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Random Rants

How To Store Vegetables and Fruit

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Do you want to know how to properly store vegetables and fruit so that they remain fresh for as long as possible? One of the ways that you can save money on groceries is by cutting down the amount of fruit and vegetables you throw away each week.

We had been noticing that these days the shelf life of the produce we buy seems to be getting less and less and we were wasting more and more. So we decided to do some research into how to store vegetables and fruit so that they last as long as possible without spoiling.

Photo by karimian

The first thing that you need to do is:

Get To Know Your Refrigerator

Photo by alsis35

Yes we know that this sounds a little strange. You just put things in there and they will be fine, right? Unfortunately it isn’t quite like that, but if we follow a few simple rules then we can maximize our storage of not just vegetables, but all food in the refrigerator.

It has 3 Zones. A Cold Zone, a Moderate Zone and a Humid Zone. The ‘average’ temperature will be around 37 degrees but there are variations within the different zones.

You probably won’t be surprised to learn that the Cold Zone is the coldest part of the refrigerator. It should be on the middle shelf towards the back and all areas of the top shelves.

The Moderate Zone is the bottom shelf, and the front of the middle shelf. Here the temperature will be around 37 degrees.

The Humid Zone is the crisper drawer. This keeps a humid, higher water content environment, and is best for certain types of produce to help the vegetables retain their water content (and so keep for longer with our spoiling).

Make sure that your refrigerator is set at the correct temperature and this will make a difference. It may be helpful to check that the temperature is correct with a Refrigerator Thermometer. If you are having particular problems and food seems to be going off quickly then it may be that your refrigerator is set at the wrong temperature or is not functioning properly.

Where Should You Store Vegetables and Fruit?

Photo by plumandjello

Where you store vegetables is very important for prolonging their storage life. It may surprise you that these fruit and vegetables should be stored on the counter and not put in the refrigerator:

Apples
Bananas
Cucumbers
Eggplant
Garlic
Ginger
Grapefruit
Lemons
Limes
Mangoes
Oranges
Papayas
Peppers
Pineapple
Plantains
Pomegranates
Watermelon

When you store produce on a counter top be sure that they are kept in a cool place (never in sun light) and that you keep fruit and vegetables separately.

These fruit and vegetables can be stored in the refrigerator:

Artichokes
Asparagus
Beets
Blackberries
Blueberries
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Cabbage
Carrots
Cauliflower
Celery
Cherries
Corn
Grapes
Green beans
Green onions
Leeks
Lettuce
Mushrooms
Okra
Peas
Plums
Radishes
Raspberries
Spinach
Sprouts
Strawberries
Summer squash
Yellow squash
Zucchini

Store fruit and vegetables in the warmest part of the refrigerator ideally in the crisper to keep the humidity higher. If you have 2 drawers then store fruit and vegetables separately. Fruits require a lower humidity than vegetables so if your refrigerator lets you adjust this then set is higher for the vegetables than the fruits.

How Should Fresh Herbs Be Stored?

We always found that when we bought fresh herbs they never lasted very long and we would throw most of them away. Since we started using this Prepara Herb Savor we have found that herbs can last for up to 2 or 3 weeks. As the price of fresh herbs is usually quite high this has most definitely saved us money in the long term.

Another way to store fresh herbs is to freeze them in ice cube trays. Simple chop the herbs into small pieces, mis with a small amount of water and pour into ice cube trays. You then have small amounts of herbs to use easily – just put the required amount of ice cubes into your cooking!

Remember that Shelf Life Does Vary For Fruit and Vegetables

We expect a lot of our food these days and often we buy lots of fruit and vegetables all at one time and expect it to last. We never know how long a fruit or vegetable has been on the store shelves.

Even though it is much more convenient to do one weekly shop sometimes, if you shop more frequently, particularly when sticking to meal planning for 2 or 3 days at a time, you will definitely notice those grocery bills coming down – and that you are not throwing away as much food.

Do you have any tips for how to store fruit and vegetables? We would love to hear from you. Just leave us a Comment Below

Random Rants

Top Tips for Beading on A Budget

Beading is a wonderful pastime which is growing in popularity every day. If you have ever wanted to give beading a try but have been concerned about starting off on a budget then here are some tips for you. You can break into this great hobby without breaking the bank!

Photo Credit Laineys Repertoire

Start Simply

Do not be too ambitious with your first project. Remember that you can create a beautiful beaded piece without the design being too complicated. You may want to start with a project kit before you start to start making your own designs.

If you start simply you will soon gain the confidence to move on to bigger projects very soon.

Be Organized

Make sure that you keep your beading supplies organized. As soon as you start beading you will begin to collect a large amount of beads and supplies which you need to keep organized. You can buy specialist beading boxes, but you may want to save money by using zip lock bags in a Tupperware box.

Get Design Ideas For Free

It is so easy to find inspiration online for beading designs. Also you could try your local library to find some beading books to borrow for free.

Find Great Beading Supplies

It can be so much fun browsing bead supply stores to find some fabulous beads. These days there are also lots of beading suppliers online. This can be a great way to save money, particularly if you buy your beads in bulk.

It is usually cheaper to buy beads in bulk so get together with some beading friends to make a large purchase together to save money.

Make the Finish a Good One

Make sure that your finished project lasts!

The final knot is the one that is going to hold your whole project together. One of the best ways to secure your beads is to use a square knot on the thread and apply some jewelers glue to the end. Do this before you cut the string and you will have a secure end knot.

Happy Beading!

This is a Sponsored Post. My opinions remain my own.

Random Rants

Keeping Children Safe Online – What Can Parents Do?

Keeping kids safe online is something that all parents are concerned about. The internet is an amazing resource for learning and communication but as we all know there is a darker side that we need to protect our children from. We have all heard the horrifying headlines about cyber bullying, online predators and inappropriate content. We all want to do our best for our kids so they can enjoy the benefits of the internet without being at risk.

The huge growth of mobile computing has presented even more challenges for parents. Whilst many of us really don’t want to hear this sexting is a growing problem amongst teens. This is something that your teen may encounter or already have become involved in, So have the conversation with them about it. It’s difficult but not as difficult as the possible consequences of ignoring that this really does happen.

How can we help to make sure that our kids are safe online?

The first step is to communicate with your child. The conversation will depend on how old the child is but it is important at any age for them to understand that not everything, or everyone on the internet has good intentions.

You should also establish rules about their online behavior. It is always the best idea to limit your kids use of the computer to a set time each day. And have the computer in a part of the house where you can see it – not in a child’s bedroom. Children are less likely to browse something they shouldn’t if you are close at hand. You can always check the browser history to see which sites have been accessed from the computer.

Content blockers and filters are a great idea, particularly for computers to which younger children have access. A Blocker does exactly what it says – blocks access to certain sites. A Content Filter scans text and images on a site and will block access to those where it flags the content or words as inappropriate. These Filters and Blockers are a particularly good idea for younger children. Be aware though that these Blockers and Filters are not an absolute guarantee – as with everything they can let content through or your computer savvy child could work out ways to get around them.

If you have an older child or teen then you may want to think about getting some kind of Tracking Software to monitor their online activity. There are also a number of internet based Monitoring Systems so that you can see your child’s cell phone and social network activity.

The internet and social media are only going to expand and touch our lives even more in the future. Taking some simple steps now could really make a difference. Start today with just spending a little time thinking about what you need to do to help keep your child safe online. You will be glad you did.

This is a Sponsored Post. As always our opinions remain our own.

Random Rants

The New Face of “Deal”ectible Mommies!

There is a new face here at “Deal”ectible Mommies! Some of you may have noticed that Candace is no longer writing for us. She has decided to step down as she has just made a big decision to homeschool her kids.

So who am I? My name is Alison and I have 3 children. A daughter aged 14 (who is not yet a terrible teen so here’s hoping)! and 2 very energetic boys aged 10 and 6.

I am a very lucky girl. I have been a Work at Home Mom for over 10 years. In a previous life I was a lawyer but that seems like a very long time ago now! I confess I grew up watching re-runs of LA Law and thought that was the glamorous life for me. Soon realized it wasn’t quite as glamorous as I had thought!

I started writing online a decade ago. I did have to learn how to write like a human and forget the legal speak!

You can’t tell from my blogging, but I have a very British accent (although I may sometimes mistake a soccer mom for a football one). I was born and raised there, but moved to the US in 2001.

I am very fortunate and travel a lot. I divide my time between California, Florida and England. Just got back from England and the jet lag is really kicking in! I am a self confessed Disney addict and you can find me on my other website at EverythingMouse. I also write about many topics on Squidoo

Other big passions of mine are cooking,reading (big Kindle fan), movies, ballet (I am a Dance Mom) Harry Potter, reality TV and homeschooling (not at the same time)!

Don’t worry. There won’t be many changes here at “Deal”actable Mommies. I loved how Candace ran the site and will continue her great work!

Remember that here at “Deal”actable Mommies I want to give you the deals and articles that you enjoy. So any suggestions are very welcome. Just leave me a Comment!

Look out for some great giveaways, offers and deals in the weeks and months to come. I have a lot of great things planned for you all!

Random Rants

Margaritaville Chillin’ Pour Liquor Chiller 78% Off Deal

Get ready for summer with this Margaritaville Chillin’ Pour Liquor Chiller 78% off deal. Now reduced to $44.57 that’s a saving of $155!

The Margaritaville Liquor Chiller super-chills premium liquors, shots or cocktails to an ultra smooth and refreshing 15 degrees F. No need to add ice which waters down the cocktails so with the chiller you get a better taste for your drinks!

Margaritaville Chillin’ Pour Liquor Chiller

This post may contain an affiliate link. You can read my policy here

Random Rants

Planning a Stress Free Kids Party

Sometimes when you know there is a special day coming up and you need to plan a party for your kids it can all feel a bit overwhelming. Thankfully these days there are so many resources to help you look like the perfect party hostess. Even if you have never planned a party in your life you can look like you do this kind of thing every day.

Whether you need a personalized Bar Mitzvah Invitation an idea for a party theme or a place to buy party supplies everything is online so that you can plan your party with confidence.

All good parties start with a great theme. For kids this can be anything from the ever popular Thomas the Tank Engine, Disney Princess, a spooky Halloween party, or an outdoor summer pool party. There are so many ideas out there it can be difficult to choose. Most likely your child will let you know their ideas for a theme. Involving your child from the start is all part of making this process a lot of fun.

If you are looking for a theme for your party then a great place to start is Parties for Kids which has so many
ideas and resources for planning that special party!

The next thing you have to decide is the location for your party. Do you want to host it at home or will you rent somewhere? The home option is of course the least cost option but then have to deal with the mess and disruption yourself. Paying for a location may be an easier choice but you will have to stretch the budget.

The next thing you will need to go is to find some great party supplies. It is very easy to find these online. Whether you need a Minnie Mouse balloon or a Harry Potter table cover you can easily find what you are looking for. You can often buy economical party supply kits which include things like invitations, banners, cups, plates and napkins.

Every party needs a cake. Are you going to buy this or is this something you can do yourself? There are so many products which can now make a very simple cake look like a masterpiece. I can bake a cake but decorating it is just not my thing, so I always look for ways to personalize a cake the easy way! There are lots of themed cake toppers which you can just add to a home made or store bought cake. Here are some great examples if you have a Disney Princess in your house and want to make a Tangled Birthday Cake.

Whichever theme you choose remember that the reason why you are having this party is for everyone to enjoy the experience. And that includes you! Don’t get stressed out about everything having to be perfect. Kids tend to like the simplest things like being with their friends. So make sure that you take some time out for yourself and actually enjoy the experience!

Photo credit lovemaegan

This is a sponsored post but my opinions are my own. ou can read my policy here

Random Rants

Traveling Abroad with Kids: Is It Really as Easy as they Make it Look?

Since I was very young I have always wanted to travel abroad. Funny coming from a girl who is 30,  only visited two US states, and been out of the country once…on a cruise (does that even count?). I don’t want to just travel the world and visit the “tourist” attractions, but I want to wander off the beaten path and see what life is really like in other countries around the world.

I long to see what’s happening just outside of Rome or what really goes on inside a local bakeries in Tuscany.  I want to see roofers in nottingham and gardners in leeds working hard to make a living for their families. I want to see what life is really like for the people who live in these countries, not just what the tourists get to “see”.

I subscribe to all of the travel magazines and I enjoy reading about travels through others eyes.  I’m awe inspired by those who strap their little ones to them, hop on an airplane, and backpack around Europe.  But, I wonder if it’s really as “easy” to travel with kids as they make it out to be.

My little ones are my first priority and that means that traveling abroad takes great thought and planning. Truth be told, I haven’t even considered traveling abroad since becoming pregnant with my first daughter. But now, they are finally to an age where I think that dream could finally become a reality.  I will certainly tread lightly as I begin our journeys and cross my fingers that traveling with kids is really as easy as they make it look!

Have you traveled abroad with kids in tow?  Is really as simple as they make it out to be?

 

Deals, Random Rants, Reviews, Travel

SeaWorld Debuts New Turtle Reef Exhibit + New Manta Coaster Opening in May!

Just a few weeks ago we took the family down to sunny San Diego for our annual trip to SeaWorld! This is a trip that we all look forward to each year. The kids enjoy the fun of visiting a theme park with deep sea creatures that they would otherwise never have an opportunity to get up close and personal with, and we enjoy that the girls learn more and more about our amazing world each time we visit.

This year, like all years past, brought new attractions and rides that continue to keep guests engrossed in the many wonders of the ocean. The new Turtle Reef exhibit brings the world of sea turtles right in front you. Our girls were able to get an up close and personal look at how these beautiful and endangered creatures majestically swim about in a 300,000 gallon aquarium with an amazing coral reef habitat.

After we learned about these amazing sea turtles, we stopped to play the all new educational, motion controlled game, “Race for the Beach”. This game taught our girls about the different species of sea turtles and what each type of sea turtle eats in the wild, while taking them on an amazing journey to find the shore.

As we stepped outside the Turtle Reef exhibit we were thrilled to find “Rip Tide Rescue” – a new ride where you’ll have the opportunity to board a life raft that will take you up, down, and around! Our 7 year old took three journeys on Rip Tide Rescue and has deemed it her new favorite ride.  This new exhibit is a must see and if you are planning to visit SeaWorld San Diego you must take the time to visit this attraction.

New Manta Coaster Opening in May!
Did you know that a new coaster is set to make its debut at SeaWorld San Diego in May? Manta is currently under construction and will allow guests to transition from watching rays in their underwater habitat to actually becoming one as you glide on a coaster shaped like a manta ray (keep up with Manta’s progress here). Pretty amazing right? We were able to get a sneak peek of of a “Manta Car” while visiting the park.

Of course, there’s always our personal favorites such as the amazing Polar Bear exhibit where I can get lost for hours just watching these amazing creatures. My husbands all-time favorite is the penguin exhibit, and we all love the amazing shows such as Blue Horizons (a must see!) and the ever funny Sea Lions Live, to name a few. We had another fantastic visit to SeaWorld San Diego and are looking forward to next years trip.

SeaWorld San Diego Deals & Savings

– Check out the All Day Dining Deal where you pay once and dine all day!

– Consider purchasing the SeaWorld Fun Card where you can come as often as you like in 2012 for the same price of a single ticket!

– The SeaWorld San Diego Silver Pass offers unlimited admission to the park for 12 months, plus free parking.  You’ll really benefit with the discounts on food and merchandise that this pass offers, including savings on camps and up-close animal encounters, as well as invitations to exclusive members-only events and previews

– Active-duty members of the military and up to three of their direct dependents may visit SeaWorld San Diego with a one-time free admission in 2012 through the Here’s to the Heroes program.

Thank You to SeaWorld for providing passes for our family to enjoy the park.  My thoughts and opinions remain my own.

Random Rants

Television Medical Claims – Have You Been Affected?

We cut cable in our house about 3 years ago for various reasons. The foremost being that we wanted to have complete control of what was being “sold” to our children. However, when we are on vacation I find myself flipping through the channels in an attempt to land on the Disney Channel or PBS so I can catch just a few moments of silence before heading off on our next adventure.

Within 5 minutes I have two little girls yelling “mommy, I want that”, whether it be some new Barbie, or even a “boy themed” toy that I’ve never heard of.  Then, in the background I heard it – “has your child suffered a heart related illness due to anti-depressants taken during pregnancy”?

Um, excuse me?

It seems that medical solicitors are all over the television today (of course, this is news to me), but I must admit that my heart skipped a beat when I heard that message. I took a small dose of anti-depressants while pregnant with my first daughter, and after consulting with my OB at the time, the benefits outweighed the potential risks (which I was informed were very small). Now, my daughter has no health problems, nor does she have a heart issue, however hearing those claims all of these years later certainly makes you rethink the choices that you once made.

I am aware that people make claims that are not necessarily substantial and that many of the companies handling the cases are working on a no win no fee basis, however I think it would make any mother reevaluate her choices when the threat seems so real – not that we can change those choices now.

One things for sure. I won’t be turning on the television again anytime soon!

Weigh in! Did you take medication during pregnancy that you worry could cause harm in later years?  Have you been affected by such claims?

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