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March 2009

February 2009

So Fresh and So Clean Clean

I am always looking for different ways to make my house smell good without being overpowering.  Once a fan of commercial air fresheners, now I am seeking a more natural, chemical -free version.  The commercial air fresheners are not only expensive, they hardly ever smell like what they are claiming to.  I found there are many ways to freshen your home without using harsh chemicals.  Here is my first attempt at a natural air freshener:

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Mmmmm....ahhhhh...can you smell the fresh orange rinds???  I wish you could, my house is full of this clean citrus smell.  AND I am reusing part of the oranges I ate!  I used the rinds of two oranges and covered them with water and let them simmer on the stove.  Keep filling up your water so you don't burn the rinds.  BONUS:  I swear it is clearing my sinuses!  I can't wait to do this with lemons and limes.

Here are some other natural ways to clean your air:

*A couple of drops of lemon oil in your vacuum filter or bag will scent wherever you vacuum with wonderful lemon scent

*Sprinkle your carpet with plain baking soda to absorb odors before vacuuming

*Reuse a dryer sheet by placing it in your vacuum bag to scent your home with the smell of fresh laundry

*Fill a fine mist spray bottle with white vinegar to remove any odors, once the vinegar smell goes away, so do the odors

*Use essential oils like lemon, lavender, orange, etc throughout your home.  You can place a few drops on a cotton ball and hide them.  Or mix oils with distilled water in a spray bottle and spray through the air.

*Plants also clean the air, they take in pollutants with carbon dioxide and give back oxygen

Have you discovered a natural way to scent your home that I haven't mentioned?  Do you find natural fresheners just as good or better than commercial?  I'd love to hear your ideas.

Happy Weekend!


Last Chance!

In honor of upcoming Spring and the beautiful butterfly, HostessJo.com is giving away this butterfly pitcher.  Enter for your chance to win this lovely white porcelain butterfly pitcher with purple sculpted butterfly attached to handle! 

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All you have to do is go over to HostessJo.com and pick your favorite item and tell us why you like it!  Leave your comment right here.  Contest ends Friday February 27, 2009.  Good Luck!

(retail value=$33.00, dimensions=8 1/4"H X 2"Opening, comes gift boxed)


Bravo!

Housewives-nyc

Please tell me you are as big a fan as me of the Real Housewives TV shows?!  My favorite is Orange County, but unfortunately its season just ended.  My next favorite is New York.  And my favorite lady on the show is Bethenny Frankel

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On its premiere episode I saw Bethenny's Skinny Girl cocktails featured.  You may have heard of the Skinny Girl Margarita.  So I started exploring.  Turns out she has a book coming out called Naturally Thin on March 10.  She is a health food chef and I am so glad she wrote a book.  She has an awesome figure so I will be buying the book. 

More importantly, due out later is a book of Skinny Girl cocktail recipes!  I love my cocktails and would love them even more if they didn't pack on the pounds.  A date has not been released yet.  Until the book comes out I found that she has several recipes on Ehow.com.  Here is her Skinny Girl Margarita:

Margarita-main_Full 

If you want a SKM on the rocks, it's quite simple. Add ice to a rocks glass, add 2 oz. (a two count) of White Tequila, the juice of 4 lime wedges and a splash of triple sec, Grand Marnier or Cointreau. It's that easy!

If you want a frozen margarita, combine all the ingredients in a blender; just make sure that there is 2 oz. of tequila per serving and you're ready to go! Serve in a chilled glass; and if you'd like to garnish the glass, rim it with a lime and dip in salt or sugar or both
 
There are several other recipes on the site including a Low Cal Mojito. 
 
So who's your favorite lady on the show?  Who's your least favorite?  All I have to say is "Silex" has got to go!
 
(photos from bravotv.comand ehow.com)

Happy Weekend!

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This is what I will be doing tonight...

We are having a "Camping Planning Party".  Basically all of our friends are coming over to plan a group camping trip for April.  We are roasting hot dogs and marshmallows over the fire pit on the deck to get in the mood for camping.  I'm not decorating for this one so I won't have any pics :( 

Do you have fun plans for the weekend?  Whatever you do, I hope you enjoy it!

(pic from evite.com)


Dazzling Discovery

I'm loving that yellow is big for Spring this year.  If you aren't ready to dive head first into yellow, add small touches of this sunny color to your home decor and your wardrobe.  Try yellow throw pillows for your bed or sofa.  Purchase a yellow purse.

This bird clock is a great way to add a punch of yellow into your decor. 

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Isn't this cute?  SESAME LETTERPRESS BIRD CLOCK, 5"D, $32; cursivenewyork.com.  

Country Living.com has many other ideas for adding yellow to your decor. 


Hostess Jo Giveaway!

In honor of upcoming Spring and the beautiful butterfly, HostessJo.com is giving away this butterfly pitcher.  Enter for your chance to win this lovely white porcelain butterfly pitcher with purple sculpted butterfly attached to handle! 

063886

All you have to do is go over to HostessJo.com and pick your favorite item and tell us why you like it!  Leave your comment right here.  Contest ends Friday February 27, 2009.  Good Luck!

(retail value=$33.00, dimensions=8 1/4"H X 2"Opening, comes gift boxed)


Easy Monday Night Meal

Well last Monday the cabinets were bare.  Grocery day was to be the next day or the next.  I had chicken strips and red potatoes and that was about it.  So I went straight to the internet for ideas.  I found several recipes of baked chicken and potatoes.  As always I took the ingredients that I liked from each and made up my own recipe. This was the tasty result:

Chicken and Potatoes

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1 pound chicken breast strips

2 or so pounds of red potatoes

1 Ranch seasoning packet

1/4 cup of Olive Oil

1/2 cup of Light Zesty Italian Dressing (or more depending on your taste)

Dice potatoes.  Stir together chicken, diced potatoes, oil, Ranch, and Italian dressing  in a 9 X 13 baking dish.  Cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes on 375 degrees.  Remove foil, stir and bake for 30 minutes uncovered or until potatoes are cooked through and slightly browned.

This would be great with a salad.  The sauce from it was delicious. It would be even better with some French bread for dipping.  Also a very healthy meal. Enjoy!