Archives for October 2015

10.27.15

#1 Tool For Cleaning Hard Floors

Cleaning when you have the proper tools isn’t that bad. Actually it’s quite enjoyable. I’ve discovered that it’s a great way to wind down from something. I have a long list of cleaning tools that I adore but today I’m introducing you to this one.

The Swiffer Bissell Steamboost Steam Mop

Just like the other Swiffer products this requires pre moistened pads. I actually use the generic Wal-Mart brand because they work just as well for a lot less money.

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Fill your steam mop with water and plug it in. My steam mop heats up and produces steam in less than 2 minutes! The steam will help remove those tough dried spots on your hard surfaces. It’s really amazing because it takes away all the scrubbing I would have had to do. There is a trigger on the handle that releases the steam when you pull it so you don’t have to use steam all the time. It’s safe on hard wood and works great on tile. The trick on hard wood is to keep it moving. If you leave it in one spot too long you could damage the finish. The pre-moistened pads work amazing and they leave a streak free shine. I tried to make some of my own, but no matter what I tried it always left a film on my hard floors. So I shell out the money to buy the pads and it’s worth it.

Tips!

  • Use the pre moistened pads from Wal-Mart
  • Spray hard stuck on spots with a gentle all purpose cleaner before mopping
  • Mop in the direction of your floors
  • Keep the mop moving when cleaning hard wood to avoid damage
  • Change the pad when it gets dirty
  • Don’t leave the mop sitting on hard wood to heat up. Keep it on tile or tilt the mop so the steam holes aren’t sitting on the ground.

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10.27.15

Monster Ball Recipe

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SpooktacularSnacks #CollectiveBias

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Have you ever wondered what monsters eat? Well they eat Monster Balls! We leave cookies out for Santa on Christmas so why can’t we leave monster food out on Halloween?

What you need:

Makes 12 servings

Prep time – 15 minutes

You can use one type or all 3!

Count Chocula®, Boo Berry® and Franken Berry® by General Mills

Butter

Marshmallows – you can buy ANY flavor you like 🙂

Chocolate chips, melting wafers, or even almond bark – whatever you prefer

Nonstick Spray

Any topping you like! I used sprinkles

Mix together 4 cups of cereal in a bowl. I used 2 cups of Franken Berry® and 1 cup of Count Chocula® and 1 cup of Boo Berry®. You can use one flavor at a time or all 3 at the same time! My sous chef Audrey wanted to mix them all together so that’s what we did. Melt 3 TBSP butter and 4 cups of Marshmallows. To melt the marshmallows put them in the microwave for 30 second intervals. After each 30 seconds take the bowl out to mix. It only took us 60 sec total to melt ours, but it will depend on your microwave. Don’t over melt them! Once they are melted mix the butter and marshmallows into the bowl with cereal. Stir together with a spatula until its well mixed.

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You can see we used two types of mini marshmallows for our Monster Balls

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Spoon the mixture evenly into a cupcake pan. They will be super sticky, but try to mold them as much as you can with your spoon. Let them sit for 1-2 hours or until you can handle them with your hands. I used white chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate chips. Put a cup of chocolate chips in a Pyrex measuring cup to be melted. Microwave the same way as with the marshmallows. Once the chocolate is melted you can dip your cereal balls into it. Once dipped set them on a baking pan lined with wax paper or non stick spray. Now cover with whatever topping you like. My daughter wanted to use sprinkles! But you can use anything! Try nuts, candy, coconut flakes, whatever you like. Stick them in the fridge to let them harden faster.

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Now you can serve them to your little monsters! I recommend individually wrapping them in cellophane bags from the baking aisle. This way you can give them to who ever you like or even send your kids to school with them.

Time to go to Target and buy everything you need to make your Monster Balls! Get creative with your toppings and don’t forget to set them out on Halloween for all the little monsters. For more spooktacular snacks click here.

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10.21.15

DIY Fog Cooler!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TrickOrSweet #CollectiveBias
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When you think of spooky Halloween fog you think of low, creeping smoke swirling through gravestones and mossy trees. Unfortunately this is not the effect you get with regular fog machines, unless you have a way to cool the fog. This fog cooler uses ice to cool the fog as it flows through the dryer hose from one end to the other. The longer the fog is allowed to cool, the longer it will stay low to the ground. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to control the wind and that will cause the fog to lift even when it’s chilled.

Fog machines are $30-$60 and you fill them with fog juice. You have to plug them in so the machine can heat up. These machines get very hot so you have to be careful where you keep it. Once it’s heated the machine blows out fog every couple of minutes. If you don’t have a way to cool the fog it will quickly rise and within seconds it will just be smoke. Fog coolers are easy and inexpensive to make. I made this one for under $100 including the fog machine.

Here is what you need

    • Plastic garbage can – about $9 at Wal-Mart
    • Waterproof Duct Tape – Wal-Mart
    • Fog Machine $34.97 – Wal-Mart
    • Fog Juice $8 – Wal-Mart
    • Small Box
    • Spray Paint – optional
    • Dryer Hose $9/piece (usually 8ft, buy 2) – Home Depot
    • Cutting tool, we used a jig saw
    • Marker
    • Ice – about 2-3 bags

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Start by tracing a circle on each side of the trash can. This is going to be the entry and exit of your dryer hose. Trace the circle about 2-3 inches from the bottom of the trash can.

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Now use a saw to cut the holes in the trash can. I started the hole with a razor blade, but it was pretty difficult so I highly suggest using a saw. We had a jig saw that we used and that was the perfect tool. It cut through the trash can quickly and easily. Now twirl the dryer hose into the trash can. You’ll have to connect the two hoses to make one long hose. Connect the two hoses and cover the seam with waterproof duct tape. Push each end of the hose out of the plastic trash can holes you cut.

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Take your box and cut a slit into it. On the opposite side cut a hole for the dryer hose to fit into. Now you can paint your box. I just used blue spray paint I had around the house. I sprayed a quick layer then connected the box to the dryer hose. Tape the top of the box closed. Now pour your ice into the garbage can around the hose. Set the fog machine at the open end of the hose and turn it on. When the fog machine is ready let it spray it into the hose. The fog will slowly make it through the dryer hose and out the box end.

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We are keeping the cooler on our porch so when trick or treaters come to the house they have to walk through the fog to get to the candy. I’m going to cover the trash bin with faux spider webs on Halloween. You can cover it with anything you want to hide the fact that it’s a garbage can. I also have some white gossamer that I could drape over the top. I can draw eyes on it and make it look like a ghost! I bought a plastic cauldron to keep on top of the box. This will be our pot of Hershey’s candy for our trick or treaters!
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I bought the Pumpkin Trunk or Treat Variety Bags from Wal-Mart. They are HUGE! I always run out of candy on Halloween, but this won’t be happening this year. One of these bags filled up my cauldron to the very top. I also bought the huge Kit Kat/Reese’s Miniatures Variety Bags. Tom and I love Reese’s so I am guessing we will be getting into this bag before Halloween. Click here to see the variety bags Hershey’s has to offer! If you haven’t stocked up on candy this year you better head to Wal-Mart! Also keep an eye out for the Halloween orange Reese’s with ‘Boo’ written on it.

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10.15.15

Hot Chocolate Recipe For Dia De Los Muertos

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CelebrateLosMuertos #CollectiveBias
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It’s almost time for Halloween! This is the time to celebrate Halloween and Dia De Los Muertos. When we lived in Colorado we hardly ever saw decorations for Dia De Los Muertos but now that we are in Texas they are all over our H-E-B! I wanted to merge the two Holidays together for our first October in Texas. I know that Dia De Los Muertos has a lot of traditional recipes, so I recreated one for my family. I wanted to come up with something fun and tasty that families could enjoy after a long night of trick or treating. I used NESTLÉ®  products from my local H-E-B to create this recipe. I even bought my cups there! Look for a demo at your nearest HEB store, check out the list for locations and dates HERE. They will be sampling Pumpkin Cookie Butter dip with LIBBY’S 100% Pure Pumpkin and HEB Specaloos Creamy Cookie Butter!

Here is what you need:

– NESTLÉ® BUTTERFINGER®
– NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® cookies – any flavor you like
– NESTLÉ® Rich Milk Chocolate Packets
– Chili Powder
– Sugar
– Whip Cream

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Start baking the cookies by following the instructions on your packaging. We bought the Hot Chocolate and White Chip Macadamia Nut cookies. I used the Hot Chocolate cookies for this recipe. Chocolate on top of chocolate, sounds like a match made in heaven!

While they are baking you can unwrap 10 NESTLÉ® BUTTERFINGER® bars and chop them in a food processor. Go ahead and set this aside because we will use it later.

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Now you need to rim your mugs with the chili powder and sugar. Take 1 TBSP chili powder and mix it with 2 TBSP sugar. Pour it onto a plate and spread it. Take your mug and moisten it with water, then dip it into the chili powder and sugar. Make sure your mugs aren’t dripping, that will make it soggy. I just dipped my finger in water and ran it along the rim.

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Now its time to boil some water! I used NESTLÉ® Milk Chocolate Mix for the hot cocoa. You can use boiled milk or water, whatever you prefer. I already had my tea kettle of boiling water ready to go. I emptied the packet into the mug. Be careful not to get any on the rim! Now you can pour in your hot water and mix.

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Now its time to use those crunchy NESTLÉ® BUTTERFINGER® pieces! Go ahead and spoon in as much as you like. I typically use 2-3 TBSP per mug. Don’t stir it!

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Get your cookies and cut little V’s in them with a sharp knife. BE CAREFUL! Then sit them on the rim of the mug and top everything off with whip cream.

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Serve your hot chocolate with a plate of NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® cookies! For more recipes to enjoy Dia De Los Muertos with, click here! Check out your local H-E-B to buy what you need to create your next masterpiece! Make this Holiday even more special by trying this recipe with your family.

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