Category Archives: Home & Lifestyle

Family 4th of July

Let Freedom Ring With These 4th Of July Favorites

[two_fifth]cherry blueberry pie recipe[/two_fifth]

Are you ready for the most patriotic day of the year? Whether you have a fully planned 4th of July event or still have more on your holiday to-do list than you would like to admit, add a little more red, white, and blue to your weekend with these American themed cooking and decorating ideas!

What is more American than apple pie? Red, white, and blue-themed cherry and blueberry pie! Try a twist on an American classic for an easy, delicious Independence Day dessert. Whether you are cooking for a potluck or a small event with family and friends, this mouth-watering recipe from Food Network Magazine is sure to please everyone. Preparation time is only 20 minutes, and Food Network Magazine gives this treat an “easy” level rating.

 

What You Need:

Pies:

  • 1 package double pie crust mix
  • 1 (20-ounce) can cherry pie filling
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons sugar

Blueberry Sauce:

  • 1 pint fresh blueberries, reserve 1/4 cup for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 cups vanilla ice cream

What You Do:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Prepare pie crust according to package directions. Divide into 6 equal portions, roll into balls and refrigerate covered for at least 1 hour. On a lightly floured surface, roll each into a circle about 1/4-inch thick.

For Pies:

  1. Place each of the rolled out circles onto the baking sheet. Divide cherry pie filling into the center of each of the 6 pie crusts and sprinkle each with the pumpkin pie spice. Fold the edges of the pie dough over the cherry pie filling, making sure to leave the center of the pie exposed. Place a few of the reserved blueberries on top of each pie. Brush the sides of the pies with milk and sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of the sugar. Place pies in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

For Blueberry Topping:

  1. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, stir together blueberries, sugar, and two tablespoons water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. To serve, place 1 warm pie on 6 plates, top each pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a generous drizzle of the blueberry sauce.

 

[one_third]Fireworks Display[/one_third]

 

Sometimes a delicious dessert alone is not enough. Go the extra mile with tasteful red, white, and blue DIY decorations! BrightNest’s DIY patriotic firework placemats are a simple, quick way to add a nice touch to your 4th of July event.

 

 

What You Need:

  • White, beige, or light-colored fabric placemats
  • Red and blue fabric paints
  • A kitchen scrub brush
  • A paper plate
  • Water for rinsing the kitchen scrub.

What You Do:

  1. Pour a quarter-sized amount of red fabric paint onto a paper plate; repeat for blue paint.
  2. Dip the scrub brush bristles one of the colors of paint and firmly press the bristles into the fabric to start making your design.
  3. To create the appearance of fireworks, alternate and overlap paint colors. Make sure to rinse the kitchen scrub in water between alternations to avoid overly blending your colors.
  4. Let the placemats dry in a safe place and – voila! You have your own patriotic placemats.

Tip: Want to add a little more flair to your fireworks? Use a second, smaller kitchen scrub to create smaller fireworks!

As you prepare for an all-American celebration full of potlucks, get-togethers, fireworks shows, and more, these quick Independence Day extras will add a little more bang to your weekend. Have a fun and safe 4th of July, and remember those who sacrificed for our freedom.

If you want more easy DIY decoration ideas, check out http://bit.ly/1o7EWSd. Have any other 4th of July cooking or decorating ideas? Feel free to share them below in the comments section.

 

“Interwoven as is the love of liberty with every ligament of your hearts, no recommendation of mine is necessary to fortify or confirm the attachment.”

– George Washington in his Farewell Address

iStock_000016411733Small

Last Minute Mother’s Day Gifts

Are you still looking for the perfect Mother’s Day gift? Why not consider giving your wife or mom a magazine subscription? That way, she can enjoy the gift all year long. Here are a few magazines she’s sure to love:

1.) PEOPLE: With juicy gossip about Hollywood celebrities and detailed stories about real-life heroes, PEOPLE magazine is a popular option. Filled with colorful photos, interviews, and articles focused on celebrities and pop culture, it’s the perfect place to learn about Hollywood stars and societal trends. The magazine also has sections about fashion, movies, books, recipes, and events. It is famous for its annual “100 Most Beautiful People” issue, as well as “The Sexiest Man Alive” and “The Best and Worst Dressed Celebrities.” If your mom loves celebrity gossip and human interest stories, this magazine is the perfect option for her.

2.) US WEEKLY: For more celebrity news, consider giving your mom a subscription to Us Weekly. The magazine is filled with detailed interviews, numerous photos, and interesting stories about Hollywood stars. The magazine contains several columns such as the “Just Like Us” section, which shows celebrities shopping for groceries, playing with their kids, or jogging. Another popular section is the “Fashion Police,” which highlights both the best outfits and biggest flops of the week. If your mom loves staying informed about the latest Hollywood gossip, she’ll love a subscription to Us Weekly.

3.) O, THE OPRAH MAGAZINE: O, The Oprah magazine is centered around helping women live the best life possible. It focuses on helping women achieve personal growth in health, career, and relationships. The magazine is filled with inspiring and empowering advice for women. Sections include “Live Your Best Life,” which offers tips about how to live a meaningful life and “May We Help You?” which features advice from trusted authorities such as Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz. The sections “Love That!” and “O, Beautiful!” feature style and makeup tips. The section “Reading Room” contains book suggestions from Oprah’s Book Club guide. If your mom loves health, career, and relationship advice, she would enjoy a subscription to O magazine.

4.) FOOD NETWORK: If your mom loves to cook, get her a subscription to Food Network magazine. The magazine features recipes and tips from top celebrity chefs. Recipes are accompanied by colorful photos and step-by-step instructions so that she can easily follow along. There are also sections dedicated to the best types of food in America, new restaurants, and an insider’s view of the celebrity chefs’ kitchens. Popular sections include ”Weeknight Cooking,” which highlights a week of simple dinners, and “50 Recipes Booklets,” a tear-out booklet with advice on how to make everything from burgers to fancy dinners. If your mom loves to cook, she would benefit from a subscription to Food Network magazine.

 

Asian family outdoor fun

Prepare for Summer With These Magazines

With summer just a few weeks away, it’s time to start thinking about planting gardens, planning family vacations, and perfecting the world’s best barbecue recipes. Here are several summer activities that you and your family won’t want to miss:

1.) Grilling & Barbecuing

iStock_000019533171SmallDid you know that May is National Barbecue Month? According to a poll conducted by the Hearth, Patio, and Barbecue Association, 64% of adults believe that a barbecue is the ideal way to spend time with family and friends. And 36% of adults associate barbecues with family tradition. Barbecuing is a favorite pastime for many Americans. It’s a relaxing way to enjoy quality time with friends while sharing a delicious meal. And a majority of adults polled preferred barbecuing to eating out.

“Outdoor cooking is a very popular pastime that unites friends and family with great tasting food that’s easy and affordable,” said Leslie Wheeler, HPBA Director of Communications. “Whether it’s a weekday family meal on the grill or a weekend barbecue, outdoor cooking can make preparing the meal just as easy and relaxing as enjoying the delicious food with others.” If you want to try out some great barbecue recipes, be sure to pick up a copy of one of our cooking magazines. For a wide array of trustworthy recipes, subscribe to Food Network magazine. With recipes ranging from Kansas City-style barbecue sauce to Pineapple-Ginger ribs, the magazine offers limitless options regardless of your palate. For homestyle ribs, pick up a copy of Taste of Home magazine. The simple, down-to-earth cooking will ensure you can prepare mouthwatering dishes without a lot of fuss.

2.) Baseball

baseballWhether you’re going to a Major League game or watching your grandchild play baseball, baseball is the perfect way to take advantage of the beautiful, breezy summer weather. For many Americans, summer wouldn’t be complete without concession stand hotdogs, sunflower seeds, and warm evenings spent at the baseball park. If you want to keep up with what’s happening in the world of baseball, consider subscribing to Sports Illustrated or ESPN. The sports magazines will keep you informed on the latest statistics, details, and game recaps.

3.) Gardening

gardenAre you thinking about planting a garden this summer? According to the National Gardening Association, planting a garden will reap many benefits. First, planting a garden enables individuals to eat healthier foods. If you plant a garden, you can enjoy fresh produce all summer long instead of buying it from the store. Additionally, planting a garden helps you practice practice environmental stewardship. And finally, it is a fun and rewarding activity. If you need some help planting the perfect garden, subscribe to one of our gardening magazines. They’re filled with helpful suggestions and tips that you won’t want to miss.

st. patrick's crafts

St. Patrick’s Day Ideas

St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, which means it’s time to think about festive recipes, decorations, and crafts for the special day. Here are a few of our favorite ideas:

1.) Recipesrainbow-cupcakes

Let your inner leprechaun out by creating some of these fun recipes. If you’re looking for a festive recipe to make with your kids, consider Rainbow Cupcakes. First, make a white cake mix according to package instructions. Then divide the cake batter between five bowls. Put a different color of food coloring into each bowl of batter. Spoon some of each colored batter into cupcake tins. Bake according to package directions. After the cupcakes have finished baking, they will look like the colors of the rainbow. Frost them with blue frosting. Pipe white frosting on top for clouds. Decorate them with Airhead Extremes Sour Belts for rainbows and Rolos for gold coins. Kids will love these colorful and creative cupcakes! If you want more fun recipes to make with your kids, subscribe to Yum for Kids. For a classic corned beef and cabbage dinner, combine 4 cups of water and 1 corned beef brisket with spice packet (most grocery stores carry the brisket around St. Patrick’s Day) in a pressure cooker. Close cover tightly. Turn regulator knob to pressure and select high pressure. Cook for 45 minutes. Next, cut a head of cabbage into 8 wedges. Combine the cabbage with 2 chopped red potatoes and 1 can of chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add 4 chopped carrots and 1 chopped onion. Cover and simmer 20-25 minutes longer or until vegetables are tender; drain. Release pressure cooker according to manual instructions. Remove beef to a serving platter. Discard cooking liquid. Serve beef with cabbage, potatoes, carrots and onion. This recipe serves around 4-6. You can find more classic, traditional recipes like this one from Taste of Home.

 

2.) Decorationsst. patrick's day jars

Trying to add some Irish flare to your home? For an easy-to-make decoration sure to add extra St. Patrick’s day charm to your household, use puffy paint to draw shamrocks and write sayings on Mason jars. Next, spray paint the jars green. Fill them with flowers or other decorations. You can also spray paint wooden blocks and stencil Irish sayings onto them. If you’re hosting a party at your house, consider making a green yarn wreath to stick on the front door. You could also hang a horseshoe on the door. For more simple ideas like this one, consider a subscription to Real Simple. The magazine is filled with easy decorating, craft, and recipe ideas designed to simplify life for today’s busy women.

 

3.) Craftsst. patrick's crafts

If you have young children, make finger paint rainbows with them! To complete the craft, you will need white and black construction paper, rainbow paints, glue, scissors, and gold glitter glue. Start by cutting a black “pot of gold” out of the black construction paper. Glue it onto the bottom corner of a piece of white construction paper. Then, have your child dip their pointer finger into one of the paints. Starting at the pot, make an arch across the rest of the page. Continue making arches with different colors, wiping off their finger before switching to a new color. After you’ve finished the rainbow, use the gold glitter glue to decorate the “pot of gold.” For a fun craft to give their teachers or friends, put a layer of gold-foil wrapped chocolate coins on the bottom of a Mason jar. Top the coins with a row of blue skittles, then a row of green skittles, then a row of yellow skittles, then a row of orange skittles, then a row of red skittles. Put some miniature marshmallows on top for clouds. Tie a gold ribbon around the lid. This is a cute, creative, and simple craft idea! For more details like this one, subscribe to Decorating Digest Craft & Home Projects.

May the luck of the Irish be with you!

Magazine Subscription Discounts Deals Penny Sale New Subscription Offer Extra Issues for a Penny

Add 3 Extra Issues to Select New Magazine Subscriptions for Just a Penny!

Magazine Subscription Discounts Deals Penny Sale New Subscription Offer Extra Issues for a PennyGet even more of your favorite magazine subscriptions for less! Now through Feb. 23, add three extra issues to new subscriptions to these titles (and more) for just a penny!

In this plastic age of debit cards, what good is change anymore? It accumulates in the bottoms of purses and pants pockets, eventually dumped in unceremonious piles on the dresser.

But that change can be put to good use during our Penny Sale! Now through Feb. 23, you can extend your new subscription to select magazines by three months for just one cent.

Plus, you’ll save up to 77 percent on a select group of titles that features a magazine subscription that’s perfect for almost anyone. Here’s just a small preview of what’s available:

Us Weekly: Get even more of the latest headlines about your favorite celebrities and reality stars, from the Oscars and the Kardashians. You’ll love this celebrity magazine because it gives an insightful peek into the stars’ real lives—which, in some ways, are similar to ours.

Bloomberg Businessweek: Keep up with the latest business news close to home and around the world with this weekly business magazine. In addition to features on iconic leaders and up-and-coming entrepreneurs, technology, lifestyle, and investment advice is also covered.

Tea Time: Has your love of “Downton Abbey” awakened an appreciation of tea? If so, this magazine can help you enjoy a good cup of it or an elegant afternoon party with its tea reviews, etiquette pointers, history, recipes, and everything else you can imagine.

Taste of the South: Love the South’s signature dishes? Experience everything from fried chicken to banana pudding with this magazine. Issues include recipes to prepare at home, as well as restaurant recommendations in some of the region’s top and out-of-the-way destinations.

Easy DIY Valentine’s Day Gifts for Your Guy from Pinterest

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas for Him DIY BouquetsCan’t think of a great gift for your guy this Valentine’s Day? Make your own with the help of these crafty DIY bouquets we found from, where else, Pinterest!

Roses, chocolates, jewelry—there’s an endless supply of Valentine’s Day gift ideas for her out there. But when it comes to the main man in your life, flowers and heart-shaped diamonds probably aren’t at the top of his wish list.

Thankfully, there’s some pretty crafty—and creative—gift ideas for him that you can find, and no source is more popular these days than the pinning phenomenon that is Pinterest.

Rather than settling for a gift that’ll leave him less than enthused, resort to a thoughtful gift that you can make yourself that he’s sure to love.

In the spirit of all the flowers that will be delivered this week, we limited our easy DIY gifts for him to bouquets of some of his favorite things. Here’s four of our picks from Pinterest:

Candy Bar Bouquet: Does your guy have a sweet tooth? Indulge him in all his favorite candy bars or other sugary treats with this perfectly festive presentation. This pin from Buzzfeed doesn’t overlook details like using rose cupcake wrappers to give it an authentic bouquet look.

Bacon Rose Bouquet: If the way to your man’s heart is through his stomach, then perhaps this is the way to go. In just four easier-than-you-think steps illustrated in this pin from our own Magazines.com blog, you can create a delicious and manly Valentine’s Day bouquet.

Minis Bouquet: Give your main squeeze a dozen (or more) mixers for his favorite cocktail with this drinkable bouquet. This idea from MBDesire is highly customizable, which means you can demonstrate how well you know your man and what he loves.

Themed Bouquet: Go for a themed presentation if you really want to flex your creativity. This “You Comfort Me” bouquet via Trusper combines comfy socks, undies, and Southern Comfort minis, for example. Again, personalize away to show you’re well aware of all his favorite treats and things.