Healthy Grilling Options for the Summer

Photo by: WoodleyWonderWorks (Flickr.com)

Photo by: WoodleyWonderWorks (Flickr.com)

Everyone loves a good BBQ in the summer. However, many grilling staples are considerably unhealthy. Burgers, hot dogs, and sausage are all high in fat–not to mention the bread on which they are often enjoyed. If you would rather stay trim for swimsuit season, check out these delicious recipe ideas for healthier options.

Lemon chicken skewers

Chicken is always an easy, versatile and healthy option. Cube chicken breasts and marinate in lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and spices, skewer, grill, and enjoy!

Grilled zucchini and eggplant with Greek yogurt sauce

Eating less meat is an easy way to stay healthy–and tons of veggies do great on the grill. Zucchini and eggplant are delicious together, and both have a meaty texture that will keep you full. Slice both veggies and drizzle with olive oil, adding salt and spices if you wish. Grill until tender and serve with a creamy Greek yogurt sauce (yogurt, lemon, dill, cucumber and spices).

Old Bay shrimp kabobs

Who doesn’t love shrimp? Low in calories and high in protein, shrimp make a wonderfully nutritious and delicious meal. If you like your seafood with a little zest, cover your shrimp skewers in Old Bay seasoning before grilling.

Spicy grilled swordfish steaks

Love steak? Opt for swordfish instead of red meat for less fat and calories. Marinate the swordfish in a mixture of olive oil, lemon, Dijon mustard, onion, black pepper, Cajun spices, cilantro, and cayenne pepper. Grill each steak five to six minutes on each side and enjoy.

Grilled fruit kabobs

Add something sweet to the end of your meal by throwing some fruit on the grill!  Grilling fruit caramelizes the sugar for a decadent treat–brush the fruit with butter and skewer it. You can even season it with a little cinnamon, brown sugar, or cayenne pepper if you’re looking for a kick. Pineapple, peaches, strawberries, apricots, or plums all work well. If you don’t mind indulging just a bit, serve with whipped cream, ice cream, gelato, chopped nuts, or any other sweet topping.

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Time Saving Cleaning Tips

Time saving cleaning tips.Now that summer is well underway, who wants to spend extra time cleaning? No one. Here are a few time saving tips and hacks to get your home clean in a flash.

Pet hair, don’t care

You love Fido and Fluffy, but unfortunately the hair they leave behind everywhere  is not as worthy of your affection. Get rid of any pet hair with a damp dishwashing glove. Grab your glove, put it on and just run the water over your hands for a few seconds so it’s damp (not soaking wet). Wipe your hand across the couch to lift off the pet hair.

Squeegee power

If soap scum on your shower door has got you down, try this: before exiting the shower, grab your squeegee and get rid of excess water on the shower door. If your favorite cleaning product is within reach, go the extra step and spray before you squeegee. Then you can go about your day without thoughts of soap scum ruining it.

Lint roller to the rescue

There’s nothing more annoying than dusting. It doesn’t matter if you’re using a cloth, feather duster or even your vacuum - the dust. always. escapes. Don’t let it escape anymore! Use a clean lint roller to dust your lampshades, blinds or anything else you deem fit. We would advise you to be careful when using it on wooden furniture or anything with a finish– just in case– to prevent damage.

What’s your go-to cleaning tip to save time? Share it below in the comments!

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8 Safer Firework Alternatives

Firework AlternativesFireworks are a crucial part of any Fourth of July celebration, but they’re also incredibly dangerous. Leave the explosives to the professionals while celebrating Independence Day and implement these safer firework alternatives instead. Your fingers will thank us.

Daytime alternatives

Have some fun before heading out to your town’s firework show with these kid-friendly daytime activities.

  • Confetti balloons and canons - fill balloons with festive confetti before you blow them up and invite kids to pop them, or purchase confetti canons and poppers if you want a less time-intensive project
  • Colored powder - you can buy colored powder online (we suggest the colors of the American flag) for guests to throw in the air, creating colorful clouds that are fun for kids of all ages
  • Silly string - because who doesn’t love silly string?
  • Colored bubbles - purchase red, white and blue colored bubbles for some daytime fun

Nighttime alternatives

Once the sun sets you can pull out these fun firework alternatives!

  • Sparklers - check first to make sure sparklers are legal in your home state and use only with adult supervision
  • Glow sticks - a July 4th staple, festive glow sticks, necklaces and bracelets are a lot of fun after dark
  • Glow paint - want to glow all out (yeah, we went there)–purchase glow-in-the-dark body paint
  • A bonfire - nothing says summer like a bonfire, which is also perfect for keeping warm when the sun sets and repelling bugs–you can even buy powder to make your flames glow red, white and blue!
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