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10 Ways To Save Money On Wedding Food – Tips and Ideas

Tue, 5/24/2016 5:01 PM

Save money on wedding food and provide a nice experience for your guests! These easy tips will help you plan your wedding menu without breaking the budget!

10 Ways To Save Money On Wedding Food
10 Ways To Save Money On Wedding Food

Planing your wedding menu can be a little bit stressful and very expensive if you’re not careful but it is possible to save money on wedding food and still provide a nice experience for your guests.

  • Plan the time of your wedding so that it falls in between meals if possible. That way if your wedding is at 2:00 in the afternoon most people will have eaten lunch and will be leaving the wedding before dinner.
  • Don’t worry if you can only afford to serve cake, punch, coffee, mints and nuts at your wedding. Having been a guest at many weddings, I have never given a second thought to what I was served. There is always that one person who will have something negative to say, but if you had had an expensive sit down dinner that person would have had something negative to say about it, too.
  • Delegate, delegate, delegate. I could never have pulled off my wedding or my daughter’s wedding if I hadn’t had a lot of help from friends and family. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. People love weddings and usually enjoy being a part of one. Pick one person to be in charge of the food, especially for the day of the wedding, and ask others to help you to prepare it.

 

Inexpensive Wedding Menus:

I will mostly be giving hints for what I call a “finger food buffet”. Finger foods are a good way to save money on wedding food, making a happy medium between just cake and punch and a sit-down dinner. Be sure to pick things that can be prepared in advance to make it easier.

The things I list are just a few ideas of things that you could use for your wedding menu. Some wedding foods will be more expensive than others. Use only what will fit into your budget.

Large platters of fruit with or without dips

  • Use in-season fruit that can be prepared ahead of time without turning brown. Strawberries, kiwi, oranges and pineapple work well.

Large platters of veggies with or without dip

  • Check out a garnish book at the library to learn how to make them special instead of just making the usual carrot sticks. You can also serve olives, pickles, pickled veggies, etcetera with your veggie platter.

Sandwiches

  • Sandwiches should be like “tea” sandwiches, with the crusts cut off and cut into shapes like triangles, circles or diamonds.
  • Most sandwiches can be made way ahead of time and frozen. Spread each side of the bread with softened butter to prevent it from becoming soggy. This really works great. Wrap well before freezing.

Cheese and Cracker Platter

  • Use a variety of cheeses. Once again, these should be cut into shapes like bells, hearts or cubes.
  • Use a variety of crackers, too, not only in various shapes (round, square or rectangle), but also different colors.

Cold Cut Platter

  • In place of sandwiches, you can have a platter of cold cuts (attractively arranged by rolling them up) and served with a variety of small rolls or breads.

Mints*, nuts or spiced nuts

Additional Wedding Food Tips:

If you want to go one step further than just finger foods, you can add in any number of different types of salads.

Everything you serve should be attractively cut, arranged on platters and garnished. You can buy some very nice silver or crystal like platters at party stores. Don’t forget to plan for decorations for the food table.

This all may seem like a lot of work but remember, you can do a good portion ahead of time, you don’t have to serve everything listed and enlist help. Also you can cut corners in some areas. For example I will be giving you a recipe for wedding mints to make but if you don’t have time for those, just substitute some of those pastel party mints that you can buy. In the same way if you don’t want the work of “tea” sandwiches, just have a cold cut platter.

      -Jill

Try this yummy Molded Party Mints Recipe!

 

The post 10 Ways To Save Money On Wedding Food – Tips and Ideas appeared first on - Living on a Dime.

Categories: Business

Plant And Grow Green Onions To Use In The House

Mon, 5/23/2016 3:50 PM

Here’s an easy how-to tip to save money growing your own green onions in the house. It’s easy to plant and grow fresh green onions and they make a great topping for many kinds of foods!

Plant And Grow Green Onions To Use In The House
Plant And Grow Green Onions To Use In The House

We love green onions around here and I’ve often grown them in the garden! Even though we are moving, I decided to throw some green onion sets in a pot and save some money.  A bag of green onion sets cost $1.49 for 80. A bunch of green onions in the store costs over $1.00.  Once they start growing you can harvest several batches of green onions and save a lot of money! 

 

Planting Green Onions To Use At Home

Just put a few onion sets one inch apart in the bottom of your pot.

Cover with soil, water and set in a sunny window. In a week you will have a great bunch of green onions to start enjoying! -Tawra

 

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Categories: Business

Free Homemade Hair Conditioner

Sat, 5/21/2016 6:37 AM

Here’s an easy and free homemade hair conditioner that will make your hair feel silky and soft like nothing else!

Free Homemade Hair Conditioner
Free Homemade Hair Conditioner

Boy, I bet that title got everyone’s attention! We love free and we especially love homemade. It’s funny– I remember when I was younger how the word homemade made everyone turn their noses up and gasp in horror. Things really have a way of coming and going with different generations.

Anyway back to the hair conditioner. There is one type of hair conditioner I rarely hear mentioned and I love it for my long hair. Of all of the products I have tried in my 60 plus (ouch) years this still makes my hair feel silky and soft like nothing else and the added bonus is, it’s free!

What is it? Rain water. Yes you read me right. When we have a downpour, I will either stick my head out and let it get rained on and/or I will set bowls out to catch the rain water for me and then I will put in a pitcher to use it.

Here are a couple of things to note about this hair conditioner:

1. Wider shallow bowls work best to catch the rain water, even something like a 9×13 pan because it is spread out over more surface area. Set out more than one container because you really don’t catch that much in one bowl. You don’t really need a huge amount because you are just coating your hair with it.

2. Use this as your very last rinse. Don’t re-rinse with regular water after you use this because it will defeat the purpose.

3. You can use this free hair conditioner in the winter too. It is even easier to use in the winter because I scoop large bowls of snow and let it melt to use later. When you use snow you can just pack it into a pitcher and let it melt in the pitcher.

4. You can save it. Just leave it in the pitcher after you’ve collected it and save it for your next shampoo.

 

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Categories: Business

Homemade Fruit Roll-Ups Recipe

Thu, 5/19/2016 8:44 PM

This homemade strawberry fruit roll-ups recipe is an easy to make alternative to store bought fruit roll-ups. Great for school lunches, picnics, road trips and more!

Homemade Fruit Roll-Ups Recipe
Homemade Strawberry Fruit Roll-Ups Recipe

3 cups fresh or frozen strawberries*
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. light corn syrup

Place strawberries in a blender and process until smooth. Measure 2 cups of strawberry puree. Stir in lemon juice and corn syrup. Line a 15×10 inch jellyroll pan with parchment paper. Pour strawberry mixture in prepared pan and spread thin, leaving 1 inch on all sides. You can adjust this to fit your dehydrator or another pan; be sure it is spread thin on the pan. Dry in an oven at 150° or a dehydrator for 7-8 hours or until surface is no longer sticky. Remove leather from pan while still warm and roll up jellyroll fashion. Cut into logs and wrap in plastic wrap. Make five 2 inch logs.

*Any other fruit may be used in place of the strawberries.

For more quick and easy recipes like this easy strawberry fruit roll-ups recipe, check out our Dining On A Dime Cookbook!

 

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Categories: Business

10 Tips To Making Homemade Cookies Easier!

Wed, 5/18/2016 1:59 PM

Homemade cookies are a yummy dessert that virtually everyone loves for any occasion! Try these easy tips that will help you make homemade cookies easier!

10 Tips To Making Cookies Easier!
10 Tips To Making Homemade Cookies Easier!
  • If you keep having trouble with your homemade drop cookies spreading badly then try using solid shortening (like Crisco) instead of margarine or butter. Not only does this help with the baking but also with the budget and I have yet to see a difference in the favor. As a matter of fact most of the old favorite recipes were originally made with shortening but we have changed them because it is easier to throw in a stick of butter then to measure the shortening.
  • Speaking of measuring shortening, here are two easy ways to do that. First you can use an ice cream scoop, which is equal to 1/4 cup, or you can use a 2 cup measuring cup with the water method. This is where you fill the cup with 1 cup of water. If you need a cup of shortening then add enough shortening to the water in the cup to make the water rise to the 2 cup mark. If you need 1/2 cup then add enough so the water line raises to 1 1/2 cups etc. After you get your amount measured just scoop it out of the water and use.
  • Here’s another idea for homemade cookies: When baking bar cookies or brownies, line the pan with foil. This not only makes clean up easier but you can lift them out of the pan when cooled and they are easier to cut. I don’t mind making the cookies — it’s the clean up I hate, so little things like this inspire me more to bake.
  • For Christmas cookies here is a tip that will save you time when December comes. Starting now, whenever you bake a batch of homemade cookies, only bake a couple of sheets. Take the batter that is left and drop it on wax paper laid on a cookie sheet as if you were going to bake them, but instead put them into the freezer. Once frozen, put them in a freezer bag to keep until you need them.
  • Closer to Christmas you will have a variety of homemade cookies that you can pop into the oven when unexpected company comes or when you discover you forgot to make treats for school. If nothing else it will save on your cookie baking time closer to Christmas.
  • Most homemade cookie doughs can be frozen and if wrapped well will keep fine for 3-4 months until Christmas so get ahead. If you are unsure about what kinds of homemade cookies can or can’t be frozen go to the grocery store and see what kinds they have in their refrigerator and freezer sections. You can freeze the same kinds, including chocolate chip cookies, sugar cookies, oatmeal cookies and others.
  • Bake your favorite pan of brownies and cut them into squares. Take a small cookie cutter, cut out the center and fill with frosting. Use a cookie cutter for each different holiday; a heart for Valentine’s Day, a four leaf clover for St. Patrick’s Day or an egg or a rabbit for Easter. You can also use the appropriate color of frosting for that holiday.
  • Make Rice Krispy treats. Using food coloring, color them red, green or pastel — once again, the colors for that holiday. When they are done, use a cookie cutter to cut them out into hearts, clovers, eggs, rabbits etc.
  • Make No-Bake Cookies for when you are in a hurry. Kids love them just as much!
  • If you are afraid that you will use too much flour for rolling out your cookies try rolling them out with powdered sugar instead. 

 

Lower Your Food Bill With Food You Family Will Love!

Would you like to serve food that will lower your grocery bill and your family will love to eat?

Click here to get the Dining On A Dime Cookbook, with tasty recipes and great tips to make your life easier and save you money!

 

The post 10 Tips To Making Homemade Cookies Easier! appeared first on - Living on a Dime.

Categories: Business

Homemade Milk Bath Recipe and Relaxing Tips

Thu, 5/12/2016 5:33 PM

This homemade milk bath recipe and homemade beauty products make it easy spoil yourself without spending a lot! Take a break with these easy recipes!

Homemade Milk Bath Recipe
Homemade Milk Bath Recipe and Relaxing Tips

Lock yourself in the bathroom, put on some soothing music and light a candle… If you are lucky, you may have 5 minutes of peace and total quiet before your hubby and kids notice you are missing. 😉

Every time I soak in the tub, I think of one of my favorite cartoons. It it shows the woman laying in a bubble bath and yelling to her husband, “We really need to get new faucets for this tub. I can’t turn these on and off with my toes.” " class="wp-smiley" style="height: 1em; max-height: 1em;" /> " class="wp-smiley" style="height: 1em; max-height: 1em;" />

Here is a recipe for a homemade milk bath and tips that will help you relax and feel better!

Milk Bath Recipe

 3 cups dry milk
 5-6 drops essential or fragrance oil

Mix ingredients and add ½ cup to your bath water. If you don’t have dry milk, try adding 2-3 tablespoons baby oil for a relaxing bath!

Tips

  • Eyes looking a little rough around the edges? Try cucumber slices or tea bags on the eyes to help reduce puffiness. Try it for half an hour while soaking in the tub.

  • To save money on manicures, don’t get them so often. Instead, use a nail buffer to shine nails between manicures.

  • Go to the local beauty school to have manicures, pedicures and facials. You can feel pampered without spending a fortune. Five bucks is a great deal for a facial!

  • After Christmas sales can offer many great deals on bath and beauty products. Purchase nail care kits after Christmas at half price. You can get several polishes and tools for $2-$4. If you family loves to receive perfume, cologne or aftershave, stock up after Christmas when gift sets are on clearance. Give for Mother’s Day, Father’s day, Birthday’s, etc.

 

For more easy recipes and tips for homemade beauty products, check out our Dining On A Dime Cookbook!

 

The post Homemade Milk Bath Recipe and Relaxing Tips appeared first on - Living on a Dime.

Categories: Business

13 Tips For Cooking Vegetables

Wed, 5/11/2016 7:00 AM

These tips for cooking vegetables include easy ideas to prepare and cook your veggies, along with great ideas for spicing up various vegetable dishes!

13 Easy Tips For Cooking Vegetables

 

13 Easy Tips For Cooking Vegetables
  • Peel broccoli stems. This makes them very tender when you cook them.
  • Leftover onion will keep better if the root is left on, so use it from the top down.
  • When you have just a few vegetables left from roasted vegetables, don’t toss them. Chop them up and use in some of your favorite casserole, chili, or meatloaf recipes. The roasted taste of the vegetables gives ordinary recipes a refreshing new taste.
  • When cooking cauliflower, add 1-2 tsp. of lemon juice or vinegar to the water. It will help keep it whiter.
  • When cooking vegetables, always remember to start anything that grows under the ground in cold water (for you city slickers like me, that includes things like potatoes, carrots and beets) and start anything that grows above the ground in boiling water (peas, beans and greens).
  • Add 1/2 tsp. of bacon grease or other grease to the water when you boil your sweet potatoes. It will help prevent that hard to remove substance that sticks to the side of the pan. This works when cooking other root vegetables, too. Those are the ones grown under ground. 😉 
  • When baking potatoes I like to microwave them for just a couple of minutes. Then I rub butter on them, salt them, wrap them in foil and toss them into the oven.
Creole Green Beans
  • Add a tablespoon of cooked onions and a couple of tablespoons of chili sauce to your regular can of green beans for a different twist.

 

New ways to make peas
  • Add a sprinkle of nutmeg and some onions to a can of peas.
  • Or crumble up some bacon to put in them along with chopped mushrooms and onion.

 

Spice up that corn!
  • Lightly saute finely chopped green and red bell peppers in butter or margarine and add them to fresh, frozen or canned corn. This is a tasty way to add a fresh flavor to your corn and is also visually appealing. You may want to saute some chopped onions and add them as well, but don’t over-do it with the onions. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • When cooking vegetables, always remember to start anything that grows under the ground in cold water (for you city slickers like me, that includes things like potatoes, carrots and beets) and start anything that grows above the ground in boiling water (peas, beans and greens).
  • When cooking cabbage, add a couple of lids of vinegar to the water to help it retain its color.

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Categories: Business
 
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