Food

It is quite rarely in this day and age to find enough time to bring everyone in the family together for a meal, and dinner is not always the best choice, because family members may have different plan. In my experience, I discovered that it is much easier for us, as a family, to get together at breakfast, since that is the only moment of the day when we are all at home, and hungry at the same time. Of course, this realization came with quite a challenge: what was I going to prepare for breakfast, without terribly long preparations?

The first idea that came to mind was to introduce good old fashioned healthy toast into our breakfasts. And the next step for me was to get a 4 slice toaster, since I needed to be quick about making toast, without waiting for 1 or 2 slices to get ready at a time. As I wake up in the morning, I go to the kitchen, I fire up my toaster and I start feeding it with slices of bread. By the time my family makes their appearance, I already have a plate filled with toast, so that no one will go to school or work hungry.

What I like about toast is that it is very healthy and has fewer calories than normal bread. The second thing I like best about it is that it basically goes with everything; you can make sandwiches, get some readymade bread spreads and spread them on your toast, or on the side, for any kind of breakfast dish that is usually served with bread. With so much versatility to enjoy, my breakfasts in the family have become quite manageable.

But let me tell you about some other ways to cook breakfast fast and easy for an entire family. An omelet always works like a charm, and since it is so packed with proteins and it is filling, it is enjoyed by everyone. Also, it is incredibly delicious and the type I make – with mushrooms and bacon – is really to everyone’s liking. My kids can be pretty fussy when it comes to food, and, in the morning, I need to make something fast, but also something they will certainly like, so I don’t have to engage in losing battles over convincing them to eat their food.

Now here is my secret weapon for the times when there is really no time to put together breakfast. I make some oatmeal the evening prior and I just reheat it in the microwave in the morning. I spread some raisins and apricots on top and everyone is certain to leave home with plenty of food in their bellies.

If you are asking me what the preferred option from all of the above is, I must say that toast with about anything is still the winner. That is why I am so proud of myself for getting a big toaster so I can make as much toast as I need for keeping my family well fed each and every morning.

 

Household

What counts as the best choice for breakfast, the best choice for dessert and the best choice for a snack? If your answer is ‘crepes’, you are just like me! I am personally a huge fan of crepes and I find them delicious and easy to make. Making crepes must be among the easiest recipes in the whole world, and, at the same time, it means that you do not have to eat junk food. Now, I am going to share with you how I make crepes the easy way.

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First things first, there are just a few ingredients you need for obtaining the tasty batter for your crepes. You need some flour, eggs, milk, salt and sugar, as well as some butter. At this point, I am only talking a bit about the batter, since the fillings can be so diverse, from sugary to savory and everything in between, that that could be an entire conversation on its own. So, here is how you can make the batter for your crepes the easy way. The content of 4 eggs must be placed inside a bowl and whisked with some salt and a teaspoon of sugar (depending on how sweet you want the batter to be, you can vary the amount of sugar you add). Add milk, again, depending on how thin or thick you want your crepes to be. I usually add a large glass. Melted butter is optional, and you can add a bit, if this is your cup of tea. At the end, I add flour, again an entire large cup, but you can add more if you want your batter to be thicker, as well as your crepes. Whisk everything together until the batter is evenly and it pours from the whisk.

 

1Now, I found the best solution for making perfect crepes. While you can struggle with a regular pan, I prefer working with a crepe maker. Before purchasing one I made my homework and went over a couple of articles which helped me to understand what is a good crepe maker.

The one I got was delivered with its own batter spreader, so I can now make perfect crepes without worrying about shape and thickness. I only need to pour some batter, spread it evenly with the spreader and the crepe maker will take care of the rest. It is an electric model and it heats up in record time, so I can make as many crepes as I like. Because it has a non-stick surface, I do not have to worry about the crepes getting stuck to the crepe maker, and washing it is really easy. I can safely say that I am basically having fun making crepes and that is why I make them so often. My family is really pleased with my new found passion, too, and I am pleased, in turn, to be able to help and offer them a tasty breakfast option. As far as fillings go, I use all kinds of stuff, from chopped veggies and shredded cheese, to fruits and fruit jams that make my crepes really the tastiest that I have ever had.

Household

 

Keeping a house clean, especially when you have kids, may seem like an ongoing endeavor that is never over. However, living in a clean environment is very important for living a healthy life. From my mother, I learned first the importance of keeping your home clean and free of clutter. She used to tell me that a person who lives in a dirty home cannot feel clean inside either. It was also her who taught me all kinds of smart things to do to keep things tidy. I combined her teachings with other new methods I have learned along the way and now I am offering you the list.

First things first, I never buy things we do not need. I know that it is inherent to developed country to spend a lot of money, but I think that waste is never a good thing. Cluttering your home with all kinds of stuff you don’t need and you don’t even like is not a good idea. So, in our house, it is a rule that no one should get or ask for things that are not meant to be used.

I always keep an eye on clutter and I prefer to clean as I go throughout the day. A comforter that does not sit straight, or a small pile of dishes waiting to be clean, can turn into a natural disaster, if you are not careful. Spending a lot of time at the end of the week to clean everything means that you are only giving yourself way too much work to do and you are also condemning yourself to live in disorganized home until cleaning day.

A thing I noticed that helps me a lot since I moved to the US is a stick vacuum cleaner. Of course, proper vacuuming should be done once or twice a week, but in the meantime a lot of dirt and dust can gather inside your home. I prefer having a stick vacuum cleaner nearby, since I can use it for small spills and I can store it away fast, without too much trouble.

Throw away things you do not need. I know that I mentioned about not getting things you do not need, but I am extending this rule right here. Old things, some that have outlived their usefulness, or things that have broken, all must be thrown away. If you are just keeping them around, with no real purpose for them, they will just end up crowding and cluttering your space.

So, these are my tips for keeping a house clean. I hope they will help you organize your cleaning habits, too. Let me know if you have other basic tips to include in this short list.