I love finding clever solutions to life’s annoyances. I’ve had to use all of these little tips in the past week – here’s hoping you find them just as helpful!
- Mosquito Bites. Avoid them in the first place by taking a Vitamin B supplement BEFORE going on a camping trip or other outdoor venture. I take extra Vitamin B in the summer because I know I’ll be outside lots. Added bonus: Vitamin B increases energy! Already have a bug bite? Not to worry, apply a concoction of baking soda and water (made into a paste) directly to the bite. And here’s one you weren’t expecting: rub raw onion over the bite to ditch the itch. Who knew?
- Packing a Lunch. I’ve already shared my love of mason jars and how using them instead of Tupperware has made packing a lunch a breeze.
- Dirty Coffee Pot. A coworker of mine once told me that he bought a cup of coffee from the coffee shop each morning because brewed coffee at the office didn’t taste as good. We were using the same coffee, brewing the exact same way, so what was the problem? A dirty coffee pot!! You can find de-scaling powder anywhere that sells brewing equipment (Target, Walmart, etc). It costs a few bucks and should last a year or so. Simply add the powder and “brew” a pot of water. Run through with plain water a few times to ensure all chemical has been flushed through. You can do this with vinegar as well and avoid the chemicals altogether.
- Limp Cookies. Sub the baking powder for baking soda and watch those babies rise!
- Bean Babysitter. Cooking dried beans takes forever and I usually forget they are simmering (after baby sitting them for three hours). Use the same water to bean ratio and cook in a rice cooker instead. Because the rice cooker turns off or to “keep warm” setting after the water is soaked up, you don’t have to worry about the beans burning. Added bonus: you can leave while they are cooking! Run errands, do your thing – the beans don’t need supervision any more.
For some other clever solutions check out my Brilliant! board on Pinterest.
And for solutions to kids messes and crafts check out Come Together Kids.
Another one of life’s little annoyances is trying to get my husband, errr, my kids to eat their vegetables. I’m sick of being the dinner time Nazi and begging both my five year old son and my twenty-eight year old husband to eat things that are good for them.
The other night, I was cooking at home by myself before Nick got home with the kids. I did a really tricky thing you guys! I got out my food processor and processed together some spinach, kale and chives. I added that straight into my pasta sauce and made stove-top lasagna. I kid you not that I sat there and watched as Nick had one bowl, then another of the lasagna. I might have started creeping Nick out – there’s only so many times you can ask “so, it’s good right? You like it? You want some more?” before you start coming across as a crazy person that might have poisoned his meal.
I told him about the veggies after he finished two bowls. He admitted that this dinner was incredibly good and was surprised by the hidden vegetables. His response: “You should do that all the time.”
And so… I did it again last night! (Yep – purple mashed potatoes!)
Both of these meals – the stovetop lasagna and the grilled chicken – were phenomenal! I’ll post the recipes tomorrow
**I have to apologize for the crappiness that has been my food photos lately. I know they are never stellar but I have not been able to find the charger for my camera since we moved and that leaves me with just my phone to take pictures. Bonus points if you can tell which of the above photos comes from my phone (Windows 7 HTC) and which one comes from Nick’s phone (iPhone 4)… bonus, bonus points if you lie and tell me both photos are wonderful.
Question Time! What are your brilliant solutions? Please share! And, how do you get your kids/husband to eat their veggies?