Posted in Home & Living

Holiday Decorating on a Budget

holiday

This time of year tends to be everyones favorite time of year, but the dread of holiday decorating may come as a burden to you. During the holiday season, we tend to spend more money so it may be a good idea to be especially frugal during this time of year. Keeping your apartment festive is easier (and cheaper!) than you may think, and a few simple tips can transform your apartment into a winter wonderland.

1. No room for a tree? Buy a mini one.

Christmas trees can be anywhere from $50 to $100, and not to mention they can take up a lot of space in an apartment. You can still achieve the Christmas feel by substituting a full sized tree for a mini one. The one I have in my apartment comes pre-decorated so I don’t have to spend more time and money decorating the tree itself.

This one’s less than $20 from Walmart.

2. Construct simple DIY decorations.

DIY crafts have the ability to transform simple items into beautiful pieces of art. I have fooled around with plenty of DIY decorations during the holiday seasons, but some of my favorite most successful projects are down below.

DIY Candy Cane Vase

DIY Pinecone Wreath

3. Transform old wine bottles.

Don’t lie, I know you have some old wine bottles laying around from last weekend! I tried this craft and it was extremely successful. Just paint the wine bottles with whatever color you prefer and cut out shapes such as antlers or buttons to transform these old wine bottles into snowmen or reindeers!

wine-bottle

4. Upgrade your kitchen table with a few splashes of festive color.

Adding something as simple as red or green placemats is a cheap and simple way to add that festive touch to your apartment. The best part? Buy them once and you never have to buy them again–just store away until next year!

Pack of 4 Placemats from Amazon for Less than $20

The holidays are supposed to be a time of bliss so don’t let the stress of decorating get to you. I hope these tricks allow you to fully get into the Christmas spirit–without breaking the bank!

Posted in Food

5 Appliances Every Kitchen Should Have

appliancs

Did you know that there’s a kitchen appliance whose sole purpose is to make smoothies? What about an appliance made specially to help you warm breakfast sandwiches? These days, there seems to be an appliance for almost everything. The question is, do you need all of these appliances to be successful in the kitchen? The answer is no, with there being only a few key essentials that will make your life drastically easier without breaking the bank.

1. Food Processor

Buying a food processor opened my eyes to a whole new world of efficiency and saving time. Preparing the food before you cook it tends to be the most tedious and difficult task while in the kitchen, and this little gadget will save you time in chopping anything from onions, to chicken, to garlic.

Try this one from Walmart for less than $10.

2. Toaster Oven

My toaster oven is so valuable in my kitchen because it serves multiple purposes. It heats up in half the time as a regular oven, making it easier to cook hand-held or frozen foods. It’s great in the fact that it works just as a regular oven, but you can also use it as a toaster. This multipurpose appliance speaks for itself, with its small structure being relatively easy to clean.

KOHLS 4-Slice Toaster Oven

3. Slow Cooker

Crock pots tend to be perfect for anyone who doesn’t have the time to slay over a stove all night. Throw all the ingredients in the cooker, and you’re done. Although you may think that this style of cooking can limit your options on dishes you can make, that’s completely false. You can make anything from dips, to soups, to stews to desserts all in this one appliance.

2 Qt. Slow Cooker from Target

4. Electric Mixer

Sure, you can spend double the time and arm power mixing that cake batter with a wooden spoon, but why would you want to? This is essential for bakers especially. The steady pulse delivered by the electric mixer allows you to better control the consistency of whatever it is you’re cooking.

Hamilton Beach Hand Mixer from Target – $10

5. Electric Kettle

A common misconception is that electric kettles are only valuable to tea drinkers. Although tea drinkers will benefit from the use of this product, regular cookers will too. Electric kettles can boil water in half the time. Not only that, but with the help of this nifty appliance, you won’t have to monitor a boiling pot of water to avoid it from boiling over. Any food items you may need to boil such as pasta or potatoes can be done so quickly and carefully.

Proctor Silex Electric Kettle from Target

By: Jessica Newman