Thursday, September 6, 2018

4 States To Visit On Your US Foodie Road Trip


If you’re someone who loves to eat, then you might want to consider going on a US foodie road trip for your next vacation. There are a few states specifically you’ll want to make sure you travel through so you can have the best experience possible.

Indulging in all of the local foods is a great way to get a taste for the local culture and better understand why people enjoy living in these areas so much. Be sure to expand your horizons when on your foodie tour and give certain cuisines a try you might not otherwise dabble in at home. 

Nevada
Not only Nevada, but Las Vegas, in particular, will have anything you’re in the mood for and is known for having celebrity chefs and some of the best restaurants in the world. You’ll be glad to know there’s more to do than gamble, which includes hitting up all of the different food spots. There’s pretty much an option for everyone and many over-the-top buffets to choose from if you can’t decide what to order. 

New York
New York is a great location to book a room for a few nights through Vacation Rentals and go exploring. If you’re on the hunt for a delicious slice of pizza, then look no further than this state. It’s also one of the main stages for chefs to show off their skills and showcase new and impressive restaurants. If you’re not up for a sit-down experience, then you can check out one of the many different food trucks that are parked along the roads in the city. There are also plenty of dessert shops if you have a sweet tooth to satisfy.

Texas
Another place to visit on your US foodie road trip is the great state of Texas. Here you’ll find plenty of BBQ and southern options you can’t get up north. There are a lot of casual dining spots so don’t feel like you need to show up in your best attire. In addition, you can choose from a variety of Tex-Mex restaurants and flavors that will have you very glad you stopped at this location on your trip.

Wisconsin
Wisconsin is known for its cheese and beer because it’s some of the best around. There’s no shortage of fried food options as well that will blow you away. Combine it all together, and you have yourself a true feast of some of the most delicious comfort foods in the country. You can even take it a step further and sign up for a tour that will allow you to taste some of the most famous cheeses and wines the state has to offer.

Conclusion
Be sure to count these states in when planning out your next US foodie road trip. As you might already realize, you won’t be disappointed with the wide variety of selections and food groups you’ll be introduced to when traveling from place to place. What you can’t be is afraid to branch out and try new foods while you’re on the tour or you may regret it later on.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Roadtrip Snacks

We are going on a road trip this coming  three-day weekend so I am thinking of  making some road trip snacks that we can enjoy while on the road.  The photos  below are usually what I prepare when we go.
These were from three years ago when we  had our road trip to Hershey, PA.  It was a  spontaneous  trip but we had a lot of fun.
Fruits are my kids favorite, especially different kinds of berries.
Some non-perishable pick-me-ups are also a great option.  When they get tired of the  fruits, they  eat some chips or crackers.
Beverages is very important, we always pack a lot of water  and tea.
Most of the times, we don't eat everything we take but it's good to have it and not need it  than needing it and not have it.
Aside from fruits and other snacks, we also love  bring trail mix or nuts.  Nuts are my favorites because it is not heavy on your tummy but fills you up.  
When you are traveling with kids, it is a must to have  food and drinks.  It is  less expensive and it makes  the trip a lot faster as you don't have to stop at a fastfood chain to buy food.
How about you, what do you normally  pack when you go on a road trip?  I need more ideas so please share yours, thank you.

3 Activities Parents Should Try with Their Kids


Quality time with kids can be moments that most parents look forward to, especially after a long, busy week at work. If you have one or more kids of your own, it’s likely that you can relate. However, finding the free time in between the many responsibilities that you’re sometimes saddled with can often be a challenge. There are many ways that you can create this necessary quality time for the kids which include taking work breaks from time to time and giving up the house chores for the day so that you have a few spare moments. If you’re reading this because you need some ideas regarding activities that you can get up to in the process, there are three that you can try with your kids below.


 

Visiting the Circus
If you’ve never been to the circus before, going with your kids for the first time may be a worthwhile adventure. A circus is a place filled with lights, cameras, and action as well as magic tricks capable of impressing both kids and adults alike. In case you don’t know much about the circus, some of the things you’re likely to see include animal acts, clowns, high-flying acrobats, and of course, lots of cotton candy as well as popcorn. Although the Ringling Bros and Barnum and Baileys Circus may have closed, there is still the option of Cirque de Soleil which frequently tours around the world with different shows in various cities.

Going to an NFL Game
In addition to going to see an exciting circus show, another idea of something parents should try with kids is going to an NFL game. Kids often enjoy high-energy and vibrant environments, so a football stadium would be the perfect place to take them for a fun day out. In case you’re worried about the cost of ticket prices, you should know that it’s possible to get affordable ones for you and the family if you check ticketsales.com. For the most part, you should find that attending a live NFL game with the kids is something they should cherish and remember in years to come.

Fishing
If you want to do something out of the ordinary as well as connect with nature, going on a fishing trip with the kids may be a lot of fun. It’s a chance for them to take a boat ride and see how to catch fish. It is also a relaxing idea for family bonding time as you’ll be out sailing the seas. In case you want to turn it into a mini vacation, some of the best places in the world to go fishing include Brazil, Australia, Brainers in the USA and Mongolia.

Keeping your kids busy and spending time with them in the process can be a good feeling. It’s an opportunity to watch your kids grow, evolve and blossom which is something that parents look forward to most. By choosing to engage in some of the activities mentioned above, you should be able to create new memories that you’ll cherish in times to come.

Friday, July 13, 2018

#BaconWrappedAsparagus + New #GrillPan from Cavetools

 For some reason, I was craving some asparagus so I asked my husband to buy me a bunch  when he went the other day.  I have a new  grill pan  here that I have to review so I thought of  grilling these babies.  I normally bake it but since it is summer, mine as well cook it outside.

I was a little worried that the asparagus will  dry out in the grill but it was still  very juicy and  the smokiness flavor really rock this  dish.
 I am glad there is still an abundant supply of asparagus from the store.  I can't wait to start harvesting  mine from the backyard, few more years and I will have some.
I was gonna make mashed potatoes but since I  am grilling outside, I decided to make potato wedges sand grilled them too.  I seasoned them with brown sugar bourbon Grillmate spices mix.  
 I normally  do single  asparagus when I bake it but since I am grilling, I put three, it was perfect.  Just a little  tip for flavoring the asparagus, before you roll the bacon, add some  dill, it made the asparagus so flavorfull.
 I was worried that I cut the potatoes a little thicker so I pan-fried them  for few minutes before putting it on the grill.
 Both the potatoes and the asparagus  turn out delicious. A lot of fat from the bacon was rendered and it almost burn  it even on a very low  heat setting.  I had to turn it off and  put foil under the  grill pan  to  stop the flame.
 I really underestimated the  fats that will come out from the bacon.  I initially thought of laying aluminum foil under the grill pan but though I could clean it easy.   WRONG!!  So my new grill pan  has a burned  part  that I am trying to  remove.   I use to be able to remove burn  stuff like this with vinegar but it did not work this time.    Any  tips on how to efficiently  remove it  with  using an abrasive cleaning  material?
Anyway, I like this grill pan because it is heavy duty, you can really  utilize it  in grilling. You can buy this  grill pan directly at Cavetools website or via Amazon.  You can use this Cave Tools Coupon Code GRILLPAN15 for a  15% Off savings.  For grilling master out there, this is a must have.  You can use it in preparing bacon and eggs for breakfast which reminds me  that this would be great when  camping.  You can use it to grill your veggies, steaks, chicken, and pork.  Aside from the burning issue which is a mistake on my part, I really  love this  pan.  

Disclosure: The owner of this blog was NOT financially compensated to write this review.  I was provided with the complimentary product/s mentioned  for testing purposes and to help me  facilitate this review but  opinions are my own.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Tips for Buying Spices

Are you planning on having some of your friends and family members over to your house for a summer cookout? If this is the case, you will need to start thinking about how all of your food will be prepared. There are many different ways that this can be done. You might want to consider using some spices to liven up the flavor of various things like steak. You might have never used spices during your cooking. Therefore, you will need to find out some good places where spices can be purchased. Here are a few tips that will help you to acquire the spices you need to make delicious food for your guests.

1.  Go to restaurants in your area to find out which spices they are using
It would be in your best interests to seek out the advice of people in the restaurant industry. These people use spices every day of their lives. Therefore, they should be able to tell you about which spice brands are considered to be the best. You should be able to get some good ideas. Go to a variety of restaurants that serve different cuisines. You should do this because people from different cultures will not use spices the same way.

2. Talk to some of your friends and family members who like to prepare food.  
You will most likely have some people in your life who enjoy cooking. Seek out these people and get their opinions about the spices they think you should use for the meals you are going to be preparing. However, you should not simply write down the names of the spices they recommend to you. You should also find out the reason why they are recommending them. They might also be able to tell you where to buy a grilling spices gift set.

3.  Go online and see which spices are getting the best reviews.  

There are many cooking blogs and other sites you can use to read reviews of spices. These reviews will expose you to spices that you might have never heard of before. You will be able to get some advice about how to use these spices when cooking specific dishes.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Father's Day 2018 Feast

We celebrated Father's Day at home and my husband had a great time.  He  is a guy whose weakness is food so home cooked meals is always a  win for  him.   I   try my best to come up with  special dish during special occasion such as Father's Day.  
We started  our celebration last Saturday by making this salmon with brown butter tomato relish.  We ate it with brown rice.  This dish is very easy to make, all you need is salmon,  grape tomatoes, garlic, butter, parsley and seasoning.
My husband  is not very fond of seafood but if you cook it right, he would like it.  He liked this dish because of the flavorful garlic and tomato relish in it.  
I wish they would cook  during Mother's Day too s o we don't have to go out lol.  I hate going out during holiday because restaurants are always packed.   Anyway, yesterday, I finally able to use  the  content of Fuego Box.
 I mentioned that this box is part of the  gifts that we gave to my husband.  He was giggling when he opened it because  he doesn't cook  but I got him this.  He also knows that  these will be used  to make  tasty dishes sdo no complain there.  In reality, this  set is for me lol.
 The box  contained the  Hot Hive Spicy honey.  I used  two tablespoon of this for the BBQ sauce that  we made for the Pork BBQ we had  yesterday.
 This organic hot sauce, blend right in to the honey as part of the BBQ sauce.  My son said it's spicy but he doesn't like spicy food so I  I expected him to  say it.
 The jalapeño and garlic was a good marinating agent  together with crushed pineapple to the pork.  My marinade also include  the serrano sauce.  I was just testing what would taste good using these sauces and  seasoning.
 I also added  a tablespoon of this Fat Cat guajillo ghost sauce to the sauce.
 The result of this experiment using the Fuego box  sauce and seasoning was  awesome.  The meat was very tender and tasty.  The chard of the  grill on the meat  give it a  little crunch factor, it was really delicious!  Fuego Box offers monthly subscription for their products so if you are interested, you can just visit the link I  have provided above. 

Now, let's talk about  the vegetable that we prepared  with this dish. I always  try to incorporate  veggies in every meal that I cook at home so we could have a good balanced meal.   We used our new  stainless steel  vegetable grill basket from Cave Tools
You can find this  via  amazon and use VEGGIE15 coupon code for a 15% savings.  Here's what you can expect from this veggie grill basket.
  • Grilled Veggie Flavor - Unlike aluminum foil, your vegetable basket lets in all the delicious bbq flavors
  • Perfect Wok for Small Foods - Grilled Fruits, Vegetables, Shrimp, Meat, and any other food that would usually fall through the grill grates
  • Sleek Curved Handle Design - Never Drop Your Finished Veggies on the Floor Again
  • Convenient Side Dishes - No more pan frying your side dishes inside while cooking the entree out on the grill. With your new vegetable basket you can cook everything in one place
 I was gonna use it for the corn, remove it's skin and grill it but I remember that my husband doesn't like when corn is directly grilled because of the  burn marks.  I didn't want to boil the corn so I thought grilling it with skin on  would do the trick too and it did.  
 I grilled some broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots using the grill basket. 
 The BBQ on the stick  turn out so juicy and  delicious.
 The great thing about this grill basket is that you can even use it as a strainer for your   vegetable  or pasta so you can use it in multiple ways.
 I can't eat meat without rice so I also had  brown rice left over on my plate while they ate  BBQ and veggies.  We had this for  lunch after  the mass.
 I made this Greek Flatbread for dinner.  This Greek Flatbread was a  light dinner, perfect to have after a heavy lunch.  This has olives, feta cheese,  mozzarella,  pepper, and arugula.
 For dessert, we had mango and  strawberry cake.  They ate  cake, I ate mango lol.   The cake was store bought, I am not good in baking so I  rely  on commercially  made/baked dessert.

How about  you, where did you celebrate? 

Disclosure: The owner of this blog was NOT financially compensated to write this review.  I was provided with the complimentary product/s mentioned  for testing purposes and to help me  facilitate this review but  opinions are my own.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

4 Ways Parents Can Help their Kids through College Financially


Sending your kids through college isn’t cheap. Over 44 million Americans currently hold nearly $1.5 trillion in student debt, which means that roughly one in four adults in the United States are currently paying off student loans. That worked out at an average debt of $37,172 per student. Ouch.

As costs continue to rise, it is leading many parents to wonder how they can help their kids through college financially. There are several strategies for this depending on how involved you want to get, ranging from creating a college saving plan when they are still in diapers to using your own retirement funds to help ease the burden.

Here are four ways parents can help their kids through college financially.

Create a college saving plan
One of the easiest ways to help your kids pay for college is by setting up a saving plan early in their lives. You can do this through a 529 college saving plan, available in all 50 mainland states and the District of Columbia, or by simply putting away a certain amount of money per month into a separate account or trust fund. Even by putting as little away as $50 a month from when your kid turns two, you’ll have saved $9600 to help towards their college costs by the time they turn 18.

Apply for PLUS or private loans
Around 3.4 million Americans currently have Parent PLUS Loans which they use to help pay for college. These allow borrowers to loan an amount that is as high as the cost of tuition and are treated like basic federal loans, although they do have a higher interestrate of 7 percent. If you have a good credit rating, you can also apply for a private student loan from a private lender or bank which may have a lower interest rate.

Look at relevant grants and scholarships
Plenty of charities and foundations appreciate the financial burden of going to college and the way it can prove to be a barrier to those from less well-off families from entering further education. That’s why they offer bursaries and scholarships to ensure that gifted students from poorer backgrounds don’t miss out on college due to financial reasons. Look at the various scholarships and grants that could help your kids through college and encourage them to apply, such as the Shawn Carter Foundation which helps individuals facing socio-economic hardships further their education at post-secondary institutions.

Tap into your retirement plans
The average “gift” from a parent to their student when it comes to financing college studies is $10,147. A fair chunk of this comes from peoples tapping into their retirement plans in order to help their kids. For people under the age of 59, early withdrawal penalties don’t occur if you are using the money to help pay for college education although it is important to consider that you might then owe tax depending on whether it’s a traditional or Roth IRA and how much money you withdraw.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

How to Paint your Nails at Home like a Pro


Before  sharing the tips on how to  paint your nails at home like a pro, let me share this cake from my birthday last year.  I'll be 45 in few days, time flies when you are having  fun!  Thanks for my husband for making my life  awesome  despite of being so far away from my family.

When it comes to having your nails done, some people just won’t even entertain the idea of doing them themselves. However, with the proper savoir-faire and equipment, anyone can get professional results from home. Here are some few tips on   how to paint your nails at home like a pro.

Use Fresh Polish

If you want to know how to do your nails like a pro, know that the process starts by using fresh nail polish. You can tell nail polish is fresh because it is thin and easy to spread. If the nail polish is gloopy, that will carry over to the polish on the nail, as well. You could try to add nail polish thinner to the nail polish, but that could create other problems. Don’t use a polish that is streaky, either. If the polish is thick and heavy, the surest bet is to throw it out.

Start with a Base Coat

While applying a base coat takes some extra time, it will give the colored polish something to stick to and helps it last longer. This layer will protect the nails underneath from staining, as well. If you’re going to apply neon nail polish, apply white or opaque polish that matches your skin tone to make the neon color pop. This also makes the sheer neon polish look thicker.

Don’t Lay It on Fast or Thick

You only need three strokes to paint your nails. Each layer of nail polish needs to be thin and spread out. This prevents both caking and smudging. Another thing to do is to take your time. Wait for the first coat to dry before you apply the second one. By waiting for the first coat to dry, the second one will dry faster and thus won’t smudge. If you apply one or two very thick layers, they’ll never dry.

Have Quick Dry Coat on the Ready

Quick dry coats are essentially an extra coat of polish you put over the manicure job. This top coat protects the polish and refreshes its shine. The “quick dry” type of polish is recommended since it will dry in a few minutes, letting you get back to work in a matter of minutes without the risk of smudging. However, you don’t want to use quick dry nail polish when you’re doing the initial manicure since this can dry out your nails.

Use Cuticle Oil

Cuticle oil hydrates your cuticles. One trick the pros recommend is to apply cuticle oil over the nails after they’ve dried. Then, if they hit something, they’re less likely to nick. Don’t cut your cuticles. The only exception is if you have a hangnail, though the odds of this happening are reduced if you’re using moisturizer.

Click off the Excess

After you’ve worn nail polish for a few days, clip off the excess. That excess is the thin white line that forms at the edge of the nail. By removing this, you eliminate the part of the nail most likely to chip or already have chipped. Top the nail off with a new fresh top coat to keep the manicure looking new. If you need to file the nails, stroke the file in one direction so you don’t tear off the tip of the nail.

Conclusion

You can do your nails at home and have them come out looking as good as if they were done by the pros. Just make sure you follow these simple tips and you should be able to achieve a professional look for a fraction of the price.

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Bon Appetit!

This blog does not focus on food only but also include different kinds of spices that affects our lives. So hang in here and explore the world of fun with us. Please bear in mind that little bit of this and a little dash of that makes a Sumptuous Life!

About Me

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A work-at-home-mom (WAHM) with  two  lovely kids and a loving husband.  Passionate in writing about  family, product reviews, and  other related articles.  A Mom, a Wife,  a Blogger/Writer, rolled into one.