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  • Crockpot Italian Tortellini

    Today, I'm sharing one of my favorite (easy) crockpot dinners. This Crockpot Italian Tortellini is quick to throw together in a few minutes and makes a yummy dinner on a busy day. It's practically a dump-and-go meal. Perfect for a busy Winter soupy meal. Jump to recipe! Ingredients: 16 oz frozen tortellini 1 lb ground Italian sausage 5 oz spinach (or a few handfuls) 2 cans of Rotel 32 oz vegetable broth Italian seasoning (I used dried oregano and basil) 8 oz block of cream cheese. In a large pan, brown your Italian sausage. While the sausage is cooking, I start getting out my other ingredients and my crockpot. I'm a timesaver, and this is my hustle meal. In your crockpot, add in the frozen tortellini, Rotel, vegetable broth, Italian seasonings, and spinach. Once your sausage is done cooking, add that to the crockpot too. Stir to mix everything around. Top everything with a block of cream cheese. There is no need to stir at this point or chop up the cream cheese. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. Once you're ready to eat, stir in the cream cheese and serve. ** It's delicious with bread to soak up the sauce. This recipe was one that I was told by a friend when we went to a birthday party. She served it and it was amazing. I may have tweaked it over the years, I can't remember if it's exactly the same as she told it to me, or if it's been changed as I made it for my own family. This crockpot tortellini is so good. We make it year-round over here, but it's even better in the Fall and Winter when you just want a bowl of something delicious to warm you up. It's also a good one to take to someone for a meal train when they've had a baby or need a dinner delivered. It doesn't get much easier than this! We hope you like it as much as we do. Crockpot Italian Tortellini Ingredients: 16 oz frozen tortellini 1 lb ground Italian sausage 5 oz spinach (or a few handfuls) 2 cans of Rotel 32 oz vegetable broth Italian seasoning (I used dried oregano and basil) 8 oz block of cream cheese. In a large pan, brown your Italian sausage. While the sausage is cooking, I start getting out my other ingredients and my crockpot. I'm a timesaver, and this is my hustle meal. In your crockpot, add in the frozen tortellini, Rotel, vegetable broth, Italian seasonings, and spinach. Once your sausage is done cooking, add that to the crockpot too. Stir to mix everything around. Top everything with a block of cream cheese. There is no need to stir at this point or chop up the cream cheese. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. Once you're ready to eat, stir in the cream cheese and serve.

  • Best Family Games

    We have quite a collection of board and card games in our playroom and we've tried them all. Here are some of our favorites and what we consider the best family board games. Check them out for your family next family game night, gifting to friends for birthdays, or for the holidays for gifts that celebrate quality time together as a family! Best Family Games Let's jump right in and review 10 of our favorite family game night games! Disney Villainous - Great for Disney fans who love a good villain. For me, Disney villains are my favorite characters to see while visiting the Disney Parks, so I knew I wanted this game, if not just for The Evil Queen alone. Each player gets to be a Disney villain and has their own agenda that they have to accomplish to win the game. Which villain will reign victorious? Giving this as a gift? Check out our Gifts for Disney Lovers for more fun ideas! Ages: 10+ Time: 45 mins+ Mysterium - This is a fun cooperative mystery game with a ghost! The ghost gives each person "visions" to help solve clues of who, where, and with what? This is a unique and fun mystery game for families with Clue vibes but more creative! Ages: 10+ (our 8-year-old loved it) Time: 45 mins+ Saboteur - A simple stategy card game. You are miners trying to get to the gold by digging tunnels but the saboteur is trying to thwart your efforts! You must conquer busted lanterns, cave-ins, and broken pickaxes to get the hidden gold before you are sabotaged! Ages: 8+ Time: 30 mins+ Taco vs Burrito - This is a quick-to-learn wacky game kids love! You build your taco or burrito with interesting ingredients that have points. Your taco might have chocolate-covered shrimp or ice cream. But, beware, people can steal your ingredients or you might get a tummyache! Bonus, this game was created by a kid named Alex! We love supporting creative kids! Ages: 6+ Time: 15 mins+ What do you Meme Family Edition - Who can come up with the silliest caption?! One person picks a meme and then other players have to pick from their hand of cards what caption they feel like goes best with the meme. This game causes a lot of giggles! Ages: 8+ Time: 30 mins+ Disney Codenames - Our favorite codenames game is the Disney edition! It's fun for both kids and adults alike. Give one-word clues to group together Disney characters, locations, and/or items. We love playing a few quick rounds of this during dinner with our kids. Cheshire Cat Tails are fun to munch on while playing this game! Ages: 8+ (I think 5 year olds could play this too!) Time: 15 mins+ Sabobatage - Create your own boba shop and make 5 drinks before your opponents. Build drinks by layering tea, flavors, and toppings. But beware of the food inspector! This is a quick and fun game for families that love boba! Ages: 7+ Time: 20 mins+ Hogwarts Battle - A cooperative deck-building card game. You get to play as a popular Hogwarts character to defend the wizarding world for the dark arts. There are different levels you can play so the game gets more challenging. Learn spells, gain allies, and unlock magical items to prepare to battle different villans. Make our butterbeer milkshake to enjoy during this game! Ages: 11+ Time: 75 mins+ Catan Junior - a pirate-themed game of adventure. It's a kid version of the Catan board game, where you collect resources from each island (wood, goats, swords) to build ships and expand your pirate lair territory! Ages: 5+ Time: 30 mins+ Mantis - There are only two rules to this card game, steal or score. Collect matching sets of rainbow-colored mantis cards to win. Easy enough for kids to play and fun enough that the adults have a good time too! Ages: 6+ Time: 15 mins+

  • DIY Friendship Bracelet Glasses

    These DIY friendship bracelet glasses are fun to make and cute to wear! Perfect for your Eras tour outfit, Taylor Swift party, or Valentine's Day goodie for your friends or besties! DIY Friendship Bracelet Glasses Supplies: Heart-shaped glasses Beads - I used these alphabet beads and these glass beads super glue tweezers - I used some old Revlon ones I have but use whatever you have or like I liked that pack of heart-shaped glasses from Amazon because they came in 14 gorgeous colors! You could probably make a pair of glasses inspired by each of her albums. But, we only did a few for my daughter's friends and kept the Valentine-themed phrases as well. Let's get started. Instructions: Once you've gathered all your supplies, decide on what color glasses you will create and what phrase you want on there. I picked out most of my beads ahead of time. The letters and the colors I wanted to go with it to make my friendship bracelet design. Choose 3 or 4 colors to create your design. 3. You're going to decide where to start your phrase or word. I started with my "be mine" beads about here (see above) and added a small line of glue near the edge of the top of the glasses. 4. I added a few beads at a time making sure to line them up correctly. 5. Once you've placed those beads, add another small line of glue and continue building your word. 6. Once you've got your word built, it's time to create the friendship bracelet effect by gluing your smaller beads in a line across the top of the glasses. I liked to pick three or four colors to create a pattern with my beads. 7. This part was a bit more tedious and required me to use the tweezers to get the beads placed how I wanted. 8. Imagine the glue is the string and place your beads oriented as if they are on string to get the most authentic look. One tip that helped me was to only do a few beads at a time and then let them dry a little bit before trying to add more. That way if a bead was crooked as I was placing it and I tried to fix it then it didn't mess up the whole line. TIP: You do want to be careful using super glue. It dries quickly and sticks to your fingers making it hard to work if you touch it. Work in sections and be patient. You can play around with colors, patterns, words, or phrases that you like. I did my Lover-inspired glasses by winding my friendship bracelet down to the other side but then I didn't like it as much. It's still pretty but I think I would stick to making my bracelet design only go across the top. But, maybe you want to make them look like bracelets going around each heart! That could be fun. One of my favorite designs to make was this King of My Heart-themed red glasses.

  • Taylor Swift Eras Inspired Books

    Hello, fellow Swiftie bookworms! I'm here today with some book recommendations for you! Taylor is a beautiful storyteller so it only makes sense that many of us Swifties would be book lovers as well. The US leg of the Eras tour may be over but our addiction to all things Taylor hasn't. Since one of my goals for this year was to read more books, I thought it would be fun to curate some Taylor Swift Eras Inspired Books. This list contains one book that I feel fits the overarching theme of each album. I had waaaay too much fun creating this post and can't wait to dive into these Eras-inspired books. Taylor Swift Books for Each Era Let's start at the beginning with Taylor Swift aka "Debut" For Taylor Swift, we are recommending My Life As A Country Album by EJ Evans Now, I'll be honest, I know this album the least, but regardless, my overall views of it are that it's young and fresh, and you still have a wide-eyed view of the world. You yearn to be more grown-up than you are. My Life as a Country Album is about Cam, a small-town girl experiencing her first love with the boy next door. It's told in a diary-esque way and is sweet like sweet tea y'all. With first love comes a little bit of heartbreak, and you can just picture Cam signing "Teardrops on My Guitar" as you read it. Fun fact, the author stated the book was inspired by Taylor's song "Begin Again", but we still think it is a perfect "Debut" inspired read. Our Fearless TV-inspired book recommendation is Stargirl By Jerry Spinelli. Fearless is a little more about figuring things out, finding friendships, and life from a high school girl's perspective. Stargirl is about a free-spirited high school girl. She was previously homeschooled and now she's going to a public high school where she's the "quirky outcast". People call her different from them and maybe even a little weird. Stargirl however is a genuinely kind person and embraces her individuality, even when the other kids are making fun of her. We love this brave story about nonconformity! Taylor Swift has even said that Stargirl inspired her! If you like Speak Now TV, we recommend you check out When Women Were Dragons by Kelly Barnhill. Speak Now is feminine and a bit fairytale-esque with a current of trauma that runs beneath the surface. When Women Were Dragons is a tale about the changes we go through to become ourselves. It talks about the 1955 Mass Dragoning event where thousands of women turned into dragons - growing scales, sprouting wings, and taking to the skies leaving a trail of fiery destruction in their wake. The story follows a young girl as she unravels this forbidden story. Why did some women turn into dragons while others did not? This book is all about a world that wants to keep women small, and how they rise up and take up the space they deserve. Our Red TV -inspired book recommendation is My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell. To me, the theme of Red is turbulent relationships and the rollercoaster of emotions that come with them. "All Too Well 10-minute version" is a hit that stands out from this album and we think My Dark Vanessa is a good read that feels inspired by All Too Well. This book explores the tumultuous relationship between a teenage girl and her teacher, who professes to love her. But, when rumors of him abusing another student start to surface, Vanessa begins to see how much he manipulates her. How their relationship wasn't really what she thought it was. Maybe she's not unique, and maybe he's a predator. It screams "You kept me like a secret but I kept you like an oath". Whew, that last one cut deep. Let's lighten the mood with 1989 TV! Our 1989 TV- inspired book is French Kissing in New York by Anne-Sophie Jouhanneau. 1989 is very much all about big city lights, late nights on the town, rooftop bars, being young and having fun dating. French Kissing in New York is a romance novel about a young woman who moves to New York City, bustling with energy. We follow Margot on her journey to find her place as a chef in the restaurant scene. She can't stop thinking about a guy she met last year in Europe and hopes she can find him. Anything is possible in the big city! Full of food, friendship, and fate. If you like Reputation, you may enjoy Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. Reputation is giving anger, vengeance, and betrayal...and we all know the story behind "Look What You Made Me Do". The book Red Queen is set in a dystopian world of betrayal and lies, where royals have superpowers, and the world is divided by red and silver-blooded people. We follow Mare, who has been raised in poverty by the Reds. When she discovers she has powers, the Silvers want to cover this up. In this tale of treachery, she is forced to play the political game that the Silvers play. Power is a dangerous game and the only certainty is betrayal. Our Lover-inspired book recommendation is Autoboyography by Christina Lauren. The Lover Era is purple-pink clouds, fun-loving, and a bit of whimsy. Autoboyography feels like it's written perfectly for this album. Even the cover is Lover coded in my opinion. We get to know Tanner, a bisexual teen, and Sebastian a gay boy, in this touching love story. While one boy has the support of his family, society pretends they don't exist. This story is all about coming out, embracing yourself, and living your most authentic life. Everyone in this town just needs to "Calm Down". For related reads, check out our LGBTQA+ Books for Kids and Teens. Our Folklore book recommendation is Adelaide by Genevieve Wheeler. Folklore is full of romanticism, exploring yourself, and finding peace within. Adelaide, is a story about Adelaide, an American living in London who falls in love with a charming Englishman. Is he "The One? As she pours herself into their relationship, she begins to lose herself a little, as he doesn't quite reciprocate the love she's giving him. He's a good guy, but does he really love her for her? She starts to get a bit desperate for his love and it starts to become a little self-destructive. This book feels very "This is Me Trying", "Mirrorball" "August", "Exile" and "The One" all rolled into a book that takes on mental and emotional health while being highly functional. For the Evermore girlies, we think you should check out Weyward by Emilia Hart. Evermore has witchy vibes of connecting with nature in an ivy-covered cottage. In Weyward, we follow three powerful women at different points in history, as they discover the gifts that bind them and set them apart. They each battle the patriarchy and the expectations that society has put on them, and as women as a whole. They find their inner power through their connection with nature. While there are no spells, there is magic weaved into the pages of this story. It's been on my TBR list since fall when I featured it in 13 Witchy Books for Fall. I'm hoping I can get it read soon! Our Midnights-inspired book recommendation is The Lies I Tell by Julie Clark. Midnights is the album about 13 sleepless nights, but as Taylor mentions, it's also about the "floors we pace and the demons we face". The Lies I Tell is a story of two women who are seeking justice for their pasts and hope to rewrite their futures. It's a bit of "Vigilante Shit" and "Karma", as one woman is a con artist who can change who she needs to be to get the job done and the other is out for revenge. This book is a quick-paced thriller with strong protagonist female characters. If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out our other Taylor-related posts such as the popular Lavender Haze Cocktail and How to Throw a Taylor Swift Party!

  • Three Cheese Potato Soup

    My friend gave me this potato soup recipe years and years ago. I tweaked it a little over the years, however, it still remains one of our rainy-day favorites. I use heavy cream in my recipe, but you could substitute it for milk if you have it. I usually use whatever cheeses I have on hand. I usually have cheddar, swiss, and mozzarella cheeses in my fridge so that's become my base recipe. In the past, I've used a variety of different cheese combinations. That's the great thing about cooking. You can totally make changes to a recipe to suit your likes or use up things you have in your fridge. Three Cheese Potato Soup Ingredients: 1 onion, chopped 1 garlic clove, minced smoked sausage, sliced olive oil 2.5 cups chicken broth 4-5 medium potatoes 2.5 cups heavy cream or milk 1 cup cheddar cheese 1 cup mozzarella cheese 1 cup Swiss cheese Directions: 1. Start a large pot of salted water on the stove to boil and cut the potatoes into 1-inch chunks. Boil in salted water for about 10 mins or until tender. 2. Meanwhile, in a large pot sauté onions, garlic, and sausages in olive oil over medium heat until the onion is slightly browned and soft. 3. Stir in chicken broth. Dump in drained potatoes and mash with a potato masher until smooth, some lumps are okay. 4. Add in salt and pepper to taste (I've added smoked paprika before) and stir in heavy cream or milk. 5. Stir in cheeses, leaving a little for topping. 6. Feel free to adjust the milk and chicken stock if the soup is too thick. 7. Once it's heated through, scoop it into bowls, top it with cheese, and serve. These Soup Bowls are my favorite for presenting cute soups and stews! Shop them here: I like to serve my potato soup with a big German pretzel or some crusty bread and a cold beer!

  • New Year Bingo - 24 fun things to do in 2024 + 100 ideas!

    We aren't big on lofty New Year's resolutions. The truth is, we have made them in the past like "loose 30 pounds", and after a few weeks we stop going to the gym and lose all momentum. This year we decided to keep it light and fun and do 24 fun things in 2024. There is a science behind having small wins to celebrate as well. As it so happens, there are 24 spots on a bingo card (if you don't count the free space) so we thought it would be fun to create a New Year's bingo card for 2024! We will fill it with 24 random things like "try 5 new pasta shapes" and "create a secret handshake" and see if we can get BINGO by the end of the year. We made several color versions and one that just says "New Year bingo" for you to choose from. Just save the one you want below and print it on regular printer paper. I filled the page with mine so I had room to write in the boxes but you could print them smaller if you want and write tiny on them. Download Pink 2024 Bingo Card Download Purple Bingo Card Download Yellow Bingo Card Download Green 2024 Bingo Card Download New Year Bingo Card You can print it off on regular printer paper size and put it on your fridge or pin board. Color them in as you achieve each fun thing. To start you off, we are sharing 100 things to do in 2024. Hopefully, this will jump-start some fun ideas for you! Obviously, you can do a few serious ones, unique ones, and ones specific to you and your goals for the year! Just have fun with it! Here are 100 things to do in 2024! Learn a party trick Try new pasta shapes - choose how many you want to try! Learn to play an instrument - ukulele sounds fun to me! Get a different hairstyle/haircut Try a new recipe Take a day trip - Go the next city over or see what's within 1-2 hours of you and make a day of it! Go to a live sporting event Read a new book - go outside of your genre for even more fun! Visit a natural attraction - look up what is near you and start there! Plan a party - it can be a birthday, holiday, or just for fun like "paint and pasta" Listen to a new musical artist Try a new cocktail - lavender haze is a good place to start Complete a puzzle - we did a 3d puzzle last year! Go on a trip somewhere new - can't travel this year, then plan it for next year. I would love to go out of the country this year! Do a new activity - geocaching, bingo, axe throwing, crochet, so many choices! Explore your city - play tourist, try out the best yelp restaurant, and visit a fun local spot! Thrift a "new" outfit Try a new restaurant - branch out and try a new culture too if you're brave Volunteer your time - find something that inspires you Visit a forest and do some forest bathing Go to a museum - Check for free days or fun events before you go Go swimming - try a new pool, lake, or beach! Watch the sunrise Play/learn a new game - chess, board games, shuffleboard, tennis Treat somebody for no reason - it can be a stranger or someone you know Host a dinner Visit a National Park Take a tour - beer tour, ghost tour, segway tour, what sounds fun! Teach somebody something you know Take a class - cake decorating, pottery, glass blowing, whatever you like Watch the sunset Grow a new plant or plant a garden Go on a boat - paddle boat, ferry, dinner boat tour Have a picnic Do something physical - yoga and walking are great low-impact places to start Go camping - don't forget your camping gear Visit a botanical garden Start a good habit - drink a glass of water every morning, floss daily, or leave work at 5 pm. Play something with a team - I think it would be fun to do a trivia night at a local restaurant Bake your own bread Write someone a letter/card Go to a live concert Stay overnight somewhere unique - a winery, treehouse, tiny house, ice hotel Painting trend - thrift a painting and add your own touches. I did this at Halloween and had so much fun! Visit a local market - craft, produce, etc Get a massage - it can be from a significant other or book a treatment Start a journal - this can be specific like a dream, book, or travel journal Make something crafty Take an online course Print your photos - turn one into a fun photo shadow box Declutter a room/space in your house Learn a new dance - tiktok dances are great for this Watch a new TV series Redecorate a room in your house - paint it, rearrange the furniture, buy a functional piece See a live show - comedy, musical, ballet, etc Go on a walk Listen to a podcast Go on a hike Ride a Ferris wheel Go to an art gallery Ditch one bad habit - just one thing you'd like to stop doing Learn to make fancy coffee at home Try a weekly food theme like Meatless Monday or Stir-Fridays! Watch a documentary Do some self-care - I plan to focus on skincare this year Compliment strangers - If you see something you like tell them Start a gratitude jar - as the year goes on write down things you are grateful for, pull out your jar at the end of the year, and reflect Start a recipe box or journal - collect those favorite family recipes too! Go to a poetry slam - or perform at one! Create a death binder - sounds morbid but it's nice to have all your important documents in one place in case of emergency Learn to make a balloon animal or origami frog! Visit a drive-in theater Make a fun food - zombie brain sushi and Cheshire cat tails are both fun! Have a star-gazing night Build a sandcastle or fairy house Complete a challenge - reading challenge, 365 photo challenge, running challenge Go fruit picking - berries, apples, peaches, find a local farm and plan a trip Make a vision board - this is good for those bigger goals Have a fondue night - cheese, chocolate, or gravy Sing karaoke Conquer a fear - did we mention singing karaoke? Eat at a food truck - tacos, ice cream, Japanese sandwiches, there are so many fun ones! Create a blind taste test - bottled water, salsa, whiskey, whatever you want! Watch a space event - the solar eclipse is this year, can you see it where you are? Visit a neighbor - I like to take our cookies, older neighbors always have the best stories or if you have kids, see if any neighbors have kids your age and plan a playdate Host a trivia/game night Start a book club (or join one) Go to a local festival - food, book, music, flower, craft, see what your city has! Be more present - put your phone down more, engage in conversations, find the glimmers Have breakfast in bed Plan one way you can budget weekly/monthly- limit movie outings, cancel one subscription service, limit lunch out - make it achievable and try to stick to it See how many dogs you can pet - keep track on your phone, always ask first Make a birdfeeder - I would love to befriend a crow! Take a sunset picture every time you see one - share your year in sunsets at the end of the year, the 1 second a day app would be fun for this Learn to solve a Rubix cube Discover a new author Forgive someone - this one could be hard but do it for yourself Open the window every morning - get some sunlight and fresh air to start your day off Curate a playlist - even better, share it with a friend think mixed tape vibes! Create a secret handshake!

  • How to Photograph Sparklers with Your Phone

    Light painting with sparklers is so pretty and fun to do! Many people get frustrated trying to capture good sparkler photos so I'm going to try to help break it down and teach you how to photograph sparklers using your smartphone! How to Photograph Sparklers with Your Phone Decide if you want some color and details in the background of your photograph or want your photos to be darker. It's a personal preference and honestly, it can change depending on your mood or the holiday/event you are photographing. Taking photos right after dusk will allow your photos to have more background details in them, while waiting until it's later will cause the background to be darker. While I'm not a professional photographer, I do enjoy photography as a hobby and love playing around with settings to see what I can come up with. Let's get started. Camera Mode "Manual" mode or "Pro" camera mode works best when trying to capture sparklers with your phone. I have an Android phone so my instructions may be slightly different than yours, but the concept is the same. Once you're in the camera app, go to "more" to change your camera mode and then select "pro" to change your settings. My settings are along the bottom and I can click each one to change them. Keep your ISO low, mine is set to 100, to keep your background from being too grainy. Sometimes I don't mind the grainy background but a lower ISO makes your image sharper. In a digital camera, I change my f-stop, but in my smartphone, I don't change it. If you can or choose to change my photos are set to f1.8. I didn't change mine from the settings when I switched to "pro", so you might not have to either. Phone Settings What we are going to be playing around with is the "speed" setting or shutter speed setting. If you're new to photography, shutter speed basically tells your camera how long to "stay open" to capture light. For most sparkler photos, I found settings between 1/6 second and 8 seconds work the best, but let's break it down more. To capture a pretty picture of the sparkler, you'll want a setting more like 1/6 or 1 second. If you want to draw shapes and create long lines of light using your sparklers, you'll need to increase your shutter speed to more like 4-8 seconds. Sparkler Photography Now, let's look at some examples and what shutter speed I used to capture them. Shutter speed - 1/6 second I wanted this one to be her holding the sparkler and that was my focus. I didn't mind the dark background. Shutter speed - 1 second This photo was taken after the first one. You can see by increasing the shutter speed, it captured more light, and therefore the sparkler is brighter, you can see your subject more, and the background has some color in the sky. Shutter speed - 1/6 second I changed the angle a little bit and shortened the shutter speed again. Sparklers are unpredictable and this time I captured a little sparkler flair that was a fun surprise! I always recommend taking a few of the same shots because every time it's going to be a little bit different. Writing with Sparklers Writing with sparklers is fun to do by yourself or with other people. Each person can be assigned a word or number to "write" with sparklers. Or you can strike a fun pose and have a second person run around you creating the light trails or designs. When writing with sparklers and having a long shutter speed, you'll create blurry images if you aren't careful. Set your phone against something to help stabilize it or use a phone tripod. All of my photos below were created without a tripod. Shutter speed - 8 seconds Having a long shutter speed allowed me to have the time to do light writing with sparklers to write the word, love. Shutter speed - 8 seconds The kids enjoyed playing around and drew wings behind each other. Shutter speed - 4 seconds You can see the differences between this and the previous photo. We learned through trial and error that 4 seconds wasn't quite long enough to finish the design they had in mind. This was taken a few years ago but you can see the idea behind writing dates or numbers for your photos. This is fun to do while ringing in the New Year! Here are some other fun examples of playing around with light writing and creating shapes and designs. If you're doing a design with a second person, the faster that person moves, and doesn't stay still in one spot, the less you will see them. These tips will also work with smaller ground fireworks as well. Bigger fireworks are a different post for another day.

  • Meet Me At Midnight New Year's Eve Party

    "Roaring 20's tossing pennies in the pool!" "There's glitter on the floor after the party!" These are the vibes I want to bring when ringing in the new year this year. "Meet me at Midnight' is such a mood for a New Year's Eve party and what better way to celebrate New Year's Eve than with a Taylor themed party with champagne, stars, and confetti everywhere! Star and moon balloons // moon pinata // Meet me at midnight banner // moon and star garland // champagne candy // disco ice bucket // disco ball party lights // confetti poppers //disco ball headband // coupe glasses // cheers light up sign // star headband // sparklers // new year hats  // starry night plates  // cupcake new year toppers // confetti balloons Here are some other fun party ideas to celebrate the New Year! How to photograph and light paint with sparklers with your phone! You serve up some bubble drinks in your coupe glasses or make this Lavender Haze cocktail! "I'll be cleaning up bottles with you on New Year's Day"

  • Healthy Green Smoothie

    In my most recent attempt to be a healthier, I created this healthy green smoothie. It's so yummy and recently has been my favorite breakfast, even my kiddos like it! I finally got a chance to make it for Richard this week and he's a fan. It's so simple and super healthy with all that spinach! I created measurements for this post, but usually for my frozen fruits and spinach I sort of eyeball it. The measurements aren't always exact when I make it but pretty close. This smoothie is so good you don't even feel like you're eating greens. It's a wonderful way to get some green stuff into your body making your day start off healthier! Green Smoothie 1/2 cup frozen peaches 1/2 cup frozen pineapple chunks 4 ice cubes 1 cup cold water 2 fresh bananas, broken into pieces 1 fresh kiwi, peeled and sliced 3 cups fresh baby spinach 1 small container vanilla yogurt (6 oz) Blend it all together for a few minutes, stirring to ensure everything is getting mixed and enjoy! This makes about 36 ounces of smoothie.

  • Egg Nog Cinnamon Roll Bake

    Christmas is literally right around the corner. I waiver between a savory breakfast casserole and a sweet breakfast casserole. If you're looking for something sweet to serve this holiday weekend or on Christmas morning this easy egg nog cinnamon roll bake is the best! Egg Nog Cinnamon Roll Bake Ingredients: 2 rolls regular size cinnamon rolls (16 rolls) 4 eggs 1 cup egg nog 1 tsp vanilla 1 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp nutmeg Frosting: 4 oz cream cheese, softened 1/4 cup powdered sugar 2 packages of frosting that come with cinnamon rolls Directions: **Note I make this recipe and let it sit in the fridge overnight so that you can just pull it out and bake it the next morning. If you decide to do that too, just skip the oven part until ready to bake. 1. Preheat oven to 375 2. Open your cinnamon rolls and cut each roll into quarters. Place cinnamon rolls in a sprayed 9x13 glass baking dish. Set aside your frosting for later, we are going to jazz it up a bit. 3. In a medium bowl, whisk together your eggs, egg nog, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg. 4. Pour the egg nog mixture over your cinnamon rolls, evenly coating them. 5. Bake in the preheated oven for about 30-35 minutes. (or cover and store in the fridge overnight and bake the next morning. Before baking, set the casserole out for 20 minutes to bring it to room temperature before baking) **Note: While it's baking, I set out my cream cheese so it can soften. Frosting Directions: 1.In a small bowl, add your cream cheese, powdered sugar, and 2 frosting packets together and mix well. 2. Once your cinnamon rolls have cooled for a few minutes, top them with the frosting. 3. I like to add another sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg on top to make it pretty!

  • One-Pot Million Dollar Spaghetti

    Like most families, spaghetti is a staple food around our house and we usually make it a few times a month. Recently though, I changed it up. I started making what I call Million Dollar Spaghetti! I named it that because 1. It tastes like a million dollars, it's so yummy! 2. I make it with some of the pricier sauces i.e. it "cost a million dollars". Not really, but it was a joke that stuck in our family. Now, this one-pot million-dollar spaghetti can totally be made with whatever sauce your family likes the best but I've made it with a variety of sauces and we keep coming back to this flavor combination. This makes a big batch of spaghetti, perfect for a large family or leftovers because it's remarkably even better the next day! One-Pot Million Dollar Spaghetti 1 lb mild Italian sausage, ground mushrooms, sliced (I use a whole pack of fresh mushrooms but skip if you don't like mushrooms) Rao's tomato basil spaghetti sauce, 24 oz jar Rao's roasted garlic Alfredo sauce, 15 oz jar 1 box of spaghetti noodles, uncooked 8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese Serves: 8 Total cook time: 40 mins 1. In a large Dutch oven, cook your ground Italian sausage over medium-high heat until almost cooked through. 2. Add in your sliced mushrooms and cook down. 3. Mix in your spaghetti sauce and then fill the empty jar about 1/2 way with water and add that too. Stir to combine 4. Break your spaghetti noodles in half and put them on top of the sauce. Stir slightly to cover the noodles. 5. Top the noodles with a jar of Alfredo sauce. 6. Add your shredded mozzarella cheese to the top of everything. 7. Cover and cook on low, simmering, for 10 minutes. 8. Remove the lid and stir the noodles to make sure they are not clumping. 9. Cover and continue to cook on low for another 10 minutes. 10. Stir noodles again and recover for another 10 minutes. Your noodles are going to cook for a total of 30 minutes. I've tried to space it out more and only stir ever 15 minutes but I've had trouble lately with the noodles sticking so I've changed up the time a bit. 10. Stir before serving and enjoy! We serve our million-dollar spaghetti with a yummy side salad and sometimes some garlic bread.

  • Easy Breakfast Casserole

    This easy breakfast casserole has all the savory breakfast favorites, in a casserole form. I enjoy making and serving this on Christmas morning. It's perfect to make ahead and keep in the fridge until you're ready to cook it. Just make it up the day before and then it can be baking while everyone is opening presents and nobody is stuck in the kitchen cooking and missing the fun! We have made many varieties of this casserole by swapping out the meat and cheeses or adding other things like mushrooms or tomatoes. This one is a classic and one that I come back to year after year. Easy Breakfast Casserole Ingredients: 28 oz bag of frozen Potatoes O'Brien (potatoes with onions and peppers) 1 lb breakfast sausage, cooked (I used Jimmy Dean regular) 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated 8 eggs 1 1/3 cup milk 1 tsp Italian seasoning salt and pepper cooking spray Directions: Spray a thin layer of cooking spray in a 9 x13 glass baking dish or pan. On the stove, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and brown the sausage. Be sure to break up the sausage as it cooks and cook it until no pink remains. Drain off any excess grease. Add the frozen hashbrowns to your sprayed dish. Top the hashbrowns with the cooked sausage and grated cheddar cheese. In a large bowl, crack the eggs and add in the milk, salt and pepper to taste, and the Italian seasoning (or other seasoning you prefer). Whisk together well. Pour your egg mixture over the hashbrown mixture in the pan. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight. When ready to bake, set the casserole out for 30 minutes ahead of time to come to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Uncover and bake for 50-60 minutes or until middle is cooked through. I put mine on broil the last few minutes to brown the top. We served ours with a little sour cream and fresh chives. Refrigerate any leftovers. Note: This can also be created and baked immediately. You can swap the sausage for bacon or ham and can use any other type of cheese you would like to mix it up.

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