Fun, Fourth, Festive, Foods: Perfect for Your Cookout

Now is the time to start prepping for your Fourth of July cookout.  And whether you are hosting it or attending one it is always fun to wow your felldeviled eggs with borderow attendees with a festive take on a delicious dish.  Here are a few ideas that will be sure to make you the hit of the cookout.

* Red, White and Blue Deviled Eggs:  If you are anything like me, deviled eggs are one of the best parts of a cookout/pitch-in dinner.  You can turn these food favorites into a red, white, and blue piece of art with simple food coloring.  Hard boil, peel, and halve your eggs like usual but before adding the filling drop the egg whites into red or blue food coloring while leaving some white as well and then set out to dry.  Fill eggs as usual and then display in the pattern of a flag.  The final result is patriotic and delicious!

* Red, White and Blue Fruit Salad: This salad is as simple as it is delicious.  With the added feta crumbles this salad has a lot of depth and a bevvy of different flavors.  This is sure to be a favorite even when it is not the Fourth of July! (If you don’t want to mix together as a salad you can also display in the pattern of a fruit flag with borderflag as shown in the picture)

water with border  * Red, White and Blue Water:  Yep, you heard that correctly, your water can even sport the colors of America this year.  This works best if you have a large, see-through water pitcher.  Simply freeze blueberries and place them in the bottom of the pitcher, add a generous helping of ice next and fill 3/4 of the way with water.  Add fresh strawberries to the top and voila, a refreshing burst of patriotism and a delicious hint of flavor to your water.

*  Red, White and Blue Rice Krispie Treats: You can’t forget to bring dessert to a cookout and anyone who has ever made rice krispie treats can attest that there is not much easier than making rice krispie treats.  All you need is 6 cups of rice krispie cereal, 1 package of marshmallows, 3 TBS of butter, and red and blue food coloring.  Follow these simple instructions to get a layered patriotic dessert that will be a hit with the adults as well as the kids.

* Red, White and Blue Martini: You will surely make plenty of friends with this fun and festive red, white and blue cocktail! Plus the ingredients won’t cost you an arm and a leg.  All you need is 2 oz hypnotiq, 1 oz citrus vodka, lemon lime soda, and grenadine.  Combine the first two ingredients and a splash of soda. Shake with ice and strain into your martini glass. Carefully pour in a small amount of grenadine. This should fall to the bottom of the glass, creating a nice layered effect. Add a white garnish like shaved coconut or white chocolate. Enjoy!

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Thrifty Thursday

In today’s rebuilding economy it seems that most of us are trying to pinch pennies one way or another.  I have decided that every Thursday we will feature some of my favorite deal site finds, money saving tips, or deals around town that are focused on housing decor and housing needs.  Today’s Thrifty Thursday will spotlight a few of the best online deal site deals thvacuumat I came across.

* The first one is a hand held vacuum featured on groupon goods.   I personally have one similar to this and cannot tell you how often I use it (especially if you have kids or pets).  This way you don’t have to drag out your bulky vacuum just to sweep up some crumbs.  This also makes for a great house warming gift as well.

*My next great find was this dual AC/USB wall outlet on Eversave.   It features 2 AC Outlets but has 2 USB outlets and a built in surge protector as well.  For those of you who are constantly moving your phones and tablets around the house this is ideal!

pillow* Last but not least my third favorite deal this week comes from my new favorite deal site for home items as well as cute clothing and baby items as well, called Jane.  This week they have some super cute pillow covers for those of you looking to add a pop of color to your couch or chair.

Dips that Are Perfect for Your Upcoming Super Bowl Party

With the big game less than 2 weeks away, now is a good time to get your delicious Super Bowl menu planned.  And while pizza and wings are always a hit it seems that the food is gone by the 2nd quarter and it can be expensive to feed everyone this way.  Dips on the other hand, feed a lot of people and you can make a variety of different dips for a reasonable price.  Listed below are some of my favorite dips to serve to a crowd! I’d love to hear some of the Super Bowl recipes you plan to make this year! pizzadip

* Pizza Dip: This delicious dip goes much further than a typical pizza would.  Served with a sliced up baguette it is also just as filling as the real thing!

* Mexican Cheeseburger Dip: This is another dip that makes a wonderful substitute for the more expensive process of making cheeseburgers for everyone.

* BLT Dip: Bacon… need I say more?

* Individual 7 Layer Dips: This yummy dip is perfect if you have someone that tends to eat all the food or even worse, double dips! Plus the cute individual cups allow people to carry around their own little snack.

* Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Dip: With all the flavors and spice of the other dips having a dessert dip is a must.  You can use vanilla wafers or teddy grahams for dipping.  This is a huge hit with the kids as well!