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7 Easy Snack Hacks That Everyone Should Know

7 Easy Snack Hacks That Everyone Should Know

Reaching for a bag of potato chips or a box of cookies can seem like the easiest option for those times in-between meals, but there are healthier ways to snack, even for those who hate the thought of cooking. Preparing snacks are always healthier than their store-bought counterparts, because they have less preservatives, salt, and sugar. Here are six recipes that will suit the couch potato in all of us.

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    1. Strawberry banana smoothie

    This filling frozen treat takes only a few seconds to make and is a great healthy alternative to ice cream or frozen yogurt. Add one cup of vanilla yogurt, one cup of frozen strawberries, one cup of frozen bananas and 1/4 cup of orange juice. Blend until smooth. You can also substitute different frozen fruit according to personal taste, such as this simple mango smoothie recipe for the perfect tropical treat.

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      2. Sweet bagel chips

      Do you have a few stale bagels lying around? Don’t throw them away. Instead, turn them into yummy bagel chips that will satisfy your sweet tooth. Cut the bagels in half and lay them on a baking tray. Spread butter on each half and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Bake in the oven at 325 F for 10 minutes. Flip the halves over and repeat on the other side with the butter, cinnamon and sugar. Bake for 10 minutes and let them cool a bit before you dig in.

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        3. Fruit skewers with yogurt dip

        For a delicious, healthy snack, look no further than these easy-to-construct fruit treats. Cut a variety of fruit into bite-sized pieces (strawberries, pineapple, bananas) and put them one-by-one on a wooden skewer. For the fruit dip, mix one cup low-fat sour cream and two teaspoons of brown sugar and lime juice. For a finishing touch, sprinkle the dip with cinnamon sugar.

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          4. Cheesy Chex Mix

          This recipe is a great alternative to cracker mixes that are filled with extra preservatives. Best of all, it only takes only a few seconds to prepare. Mix 3 cups of Chex cereal, 1 cup of cheese crackers, and 2 cups of mini pretzels with 3/4 cup grated parmesan, a pinch of garlic powder, and 1/2 stick of melted butter in a mixing bowl. Spread the mixture evenly on a baking pan and bake in the oven at 325 degrees F, occasionally stirring it to avoid it from getting burnt. Let it cool off a bit before eating it.

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            5. Caramel popcorn

            This delicious treat is a twist on the traditional movie night snack and is bound to please those major sweet cravings. Melt 1/3 cup butter with 1 tablespoon of honey and a dash of salt. Mix with 12 cups of popcorn and add 1 cup of pecans. Lay on a parchment-lined baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes at 325 degrees F, occasionally stirring it to avoid it from getting burnt. Make sure it cools off a bit before eating.

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              6. Pita nachos

              Nachos can be quite a calorie bomb, but this snack is a healthier alternative without sacrificing the taste. Use whole wheat pita bread instead of white pitta to be extra healthy. Cut a pita bread into 2 round halves and then divide further into smaller wedges. Broil until they turn golden brown, and then sprinkle with shredded cheddar and salsa. Broil once again until the cheese melts. Garnish with sliced scallions if desired.

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                7. Nutella egg cream

                Sometimes there’s nothing better than a cool, chocolate drink to quell a cocoa craving. This recipe is great because not only is it delicious, but it is a great source of calcium. Mix 3/4 cups of milk with 2 tablespoons of room-temperature Nutella in a glass. Stir quickly and then pour in 1/2 cup of cold seltzer.

                Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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                Last Updated on July 18, 2019

                10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                Your house is more than just a building that you live in. It should be a home that makes you feel welcome as soon as you open the front door.

                Making your house feel like a home is not something that simply happens on its own. You need to make some changes to a house when you move in, to give it that cozy, warm feeling that turns it into a true home. To help you speed the process, follow this guide to 10 small changes to make your house feel like a home.

                1. Make the Windows Your Own

                When you move into a home, they often come with boring Venetian blinds or less than attractive curtains.

                One of the best ways you can instantly warm your home and make it showcase your style is to add some new window dressing. Adding beautiful curtains not only improves your home’s appearance, but it can also help to control the temperature.

                2. Put up Some Art

                If you have a lot of bare walls in your home, it will seem sterile no matter how beautiful your paint or wallpaper is.

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                Hanging art on the walls will instantly give it personality and make it feel like home.

                3. Improve the Aroma

                A house that is not filled with inviting smells will never feel like a home. There are loads of ways you can make your home smell nice. There are tons of air fresheners on the market you can use.

                Incense and scented candles are a nice option as well. Don’t forget that baking in a home is also a great way to fill it with an aroma that instantly smells like home as soon as you open the front door.

                4. Put out Lots of Pillows and Throws

                A great way to make your home look warm and inviting is to place lots of pillows and throws out on the furniture. It is much better to have too many pillows than not enough.

                There is nothing like the feeling of sinking into a cushiony pillow that feels like a cloud to make you feel like you are at home.

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                5. Instantly Class up Your Closet

                If your closet is filled with wire or plastic hangers, it will never truly feel homey. To instantly make your closet feel classy, change out your old hangers for wooden ones.

                Not only do they look great, but they are better for hanging your clothes as well.

                6. Improve Your Air Quality

                One of the most overlooked ways to make your house feel more like a home is to improve its air quality.

                The easiest and best way to upgrade the air quality in your home is to change the old, dirty filters in your furnace regularly. Get some air filters delivered to your home so that you always have some on hand.

                7. Fill it with Plants

                Another way to improve the air quality in your home is to fill it with plants. You should have plants in every room of your home.

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                They help to improve the air quality and they look beautiful. As well as making your home appear homier, plants also help to boost your mood and lower your stress levels.

                8. Change the Doorknobs

                Most people don’t really give their doorknobs a second thought unless they are broken. That is a shame because changing your doorknobs is an easy way to add personality to your home.

                Changing your old, boring doorknobs to new ones that are works of art will instantly brighten your home.

                9. Upgrade Your Tub or Shower

                There is nothing like luxuriating in a whirlpool bath or steam shower to make the cares of the day melt away. Your family deserves a bit of luxury when they are in their bathroom.

                Install a new shower or tub today to make your bathroom worthy of a place in your home.

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                10. Fresh Cut Flowers

                You can make any room in your house feel homier by placing a vase full of beautiful flowers in it. The gorgeous look and intoxicating aroma of fresh cut flowers will immediately brighten your day when you encounter them.

                You don’t have to make all these changes at once. Try one or two a day though, and your house will feel like a home before you know it. The trick is to constantly keep adding these homey touches to make your home a place worthy of its name.

                Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-wooden-round-analog-wall-clock-on-brown-wooden-wall-121537/ via unsplash.com

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