Would You Eat Bugs…by Choice?

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eating crickets

Apparently the insects as protein revolution is really starting to take flight {pun intended}.  Remember when I asked you if you would be willing to eat deep fried crickets?  Well, according to this article, the Denver County Fair featured several cleverly disguised insect treats this year.  In fact, several companies are popping up in an attempt to breakdown the taboos we Americans have against consuming insects.

The “bugs as food industry” is trying to win over the public with bars, protein powders, and clever Harry Potter-esque names, like Sky Prawns and Hopper Bars.  On the upside, insects are a pretty environmentally low-impact way to get protein {when compared to livestock}, and the downside, I’ve eaten several bugs while riding my bike, and not once do I remember saying, “Oh, that was actually quite tasty.”

I have seen bug suckers at the gas station before, but I have to be honest, I thought they were a gag gift, literally.  I’m not sure if I would be willing to actually eat them–I think for now, I’ll stick to tootsie pops.

So, what do you think, would you scoop some cricket powder into your morning smoothie?

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.



Free Kindle Books, Coupons, Herbal Essences, Sewing Deals, Recipes and More

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monarch butterfly on yellow flower

Ahh Friday. I love you. :)

Have a great weekend everyone, and be sure and get a little r&r if you can.

Mavis

Amazon Gold Box Deal of the Day - Up to 85% Off “Stargate Atlantis: The Complete Collection” on DVD and Blu-ray

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Available Kindle Books I think are cool…

The prices on Kindle Books can change quickly, so grab them while you can. Don’t have a Kindle? Download the kindle app on your other devices. It’s easy!

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Get a 2 Pack of Herbal Essences Color Me Happy Color Safe Shampoo  for just $1.70 shipped when you clip the $3.00 off coupon and use the subscribe and save option at checkout. Wowza! That is a great deal! Learn About Amazon Subscribe and Save
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Get 10 Stylus Pens for your iPad or iPod for just $1.87 shipped!

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Have you ever turned trash into treasure? Check out how to Make a Recycled Wooden Garden Sign. Find more cool projects on my Arts and Crafts Pinterest Board.

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Ibotta allows you to earn cash each time you shop. Here’s how: Before shopping, choose your offers by completing tasks in the Ibotta Product Gallery. Once you complete at least one task per product offer, the product offer is automatically added to your shopping list on the Ibotta app so you can earn money for purchasing the item.


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Get a Grandparents Day Card for just $1.99 plus FREE SHIPPING when you create it online at Cardstore.com. Simply use Code: CAK4296, Valid through 8/29/14. :) Go HERE to get started!

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This Vegan Zucchini Bread w/Chocolate Chips has veggies in it so it’s totally healthy, right?? Find the recipe HERE or Pin it for later.

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Gymboree has great deals on fun Fall styles at just $5, $10, $15, and $20. Plus spend an additional 20% off any order of $100 when you use code HOORAY at checkout.

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This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Fee-Free National Parks Admission Days

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Mt.-Rainier-National-Park-waterfallYou know I love to travel, and while I’d hop a flight to London every month if I could swing it, there are so many cool places in the US I love exploring too. Some of our national parks top my list of awesome places to vacation to. I might not be much of a camper, but I love to hike. And I’ve seen some pretty amazing views while hiking through some of our national parks.

Did you know there are over 400 national parks in the US? Wowzas. Some of the best ones charge admission fees, so you’ll want to pay attention to the list of 2014 fee-free days below if you’re planning on visiting one of the fee-based national parks anytime soon:

Free National Park Admission Dates:

  • January 20- Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • February 15-17- Presidents Day weekend
  • April 19-20- opening weekend of National Park Week
  • August 25- National Park Service Birthday
  • September 27- National Public Lands Day
  • November 11- Veterans Day

Other agencies participate in fee-free days as well. See the full list and participating agency below:

Dates Event Participating Agency
Jan. 20 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Bureau of Land Management
National Park Service
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Forest Service
Feb. 15-17 President’s Day Weekend Bureau of Land Management
National Park Service
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Forest Service
April 19-20 National Park Week’s opening weekend National Park Service
June 14 National Get Outdoors Day U.S. Forest Service
Aug. 25 National Park Service’s 98th Birthday National Park Service
Sept. 27 National Public Lands Day Army Corps of Engineers
Bureau of Land Management
Bureau of Reclamation
National Park Service
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Forest Service
Oct. 12 National Wildlife Refuge Day U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Nov. 8-11 Veteran’s Day Weekend Army Corps of Engineers
Bureau of Land Management
Bureau of Reclamation
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Forest Service
Nov. 11 Veteran’s Day National Park Service

Mt. Rainier National Park vacations

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

7 Tips for Surviving a Red Eye Flight

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7 Tips for Surviving a Red Eye Flight

There’s no doubt about it, I love to travel, and when I do I actually prefer taking a red eye flight {gasp!}.

You can save time because it doesn’t cut into one of your vacation days…and obviously, you can save money.  Over the years, I’ve kind of mastered the red eye hangover.

Here’s 7 ways to survive a red eye, and still feel ready and refreshed for your vacation:

  1. I always pop a couple of ibuprofen right before take off so that I don’t get a headache from the airplane noise.  It is that whole ounce of prevention thing.
  2. Drink water or juice instead of soda or alcoholic beverages.  It’s not as fun, but believe me, your body with thank you for it.  Flying dehydrates you anyway, add poor quality sleep to the mix and you will feel like garbage.  It’s best to just avoid that altogether.
  3. Have your toothbrush handy and pop into the bathroom before you land.  That way, you don’t feel gross.  You can hit the ground running.
  4. Bring a jacket or a sweater.  If you get cold you can wear it, but a jacket/sweater = a pillow in my book.  You can wad it up and rest easy knowing you aren’t sharing drool with the last passenger from one of the shared airplane pillows.
  5. Get a window seat.  This is essential.  That way, you’ll have a wall to lean up against, and won’t have to rely on the guy that smells faintly of bologna sitting next to you. :)
  6. Dress for nappy time.  Yes, this is the time when sweats and comfy clothes are totally acceptable in public.  Being comfy will make sleeping sooooo much easier.
  7. Eat before you get on the plane.  Skip the in-flight $7 meal and try, if possible, to go straight to sleep.  This is about getting the most out of your sleep so you can enjoy your vacation.  It will also communicate silently to everyone around you that  you are not there to chit-chat.  It’s bedtime.

Do YOU take red eye flights?  What are your tips and tricks for surviving them?

~Mavis

See more of my travel tips HERE.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

James Madison’s Montpelier

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James Madison Montpelier

I was going through some photos of our trip last to Virginia and realized I forgot to share our trip to Montpelier {James Madison’s estate}.  Since we went to Monticello and Mount Vernon last time we were back east, I thought I’d better keep up the themed history lesson and check it out.

James Madison Montpelier

Quick history lesson, in case you’ve forgotten everything you learned in sixth grade:  James Madison was our fourth president.  His estate is massive, to say the least, covering about 2700 acres.

James Madison s Montpelier Barn

First off, let me start by saying, Montpelier is a MANSION.  They call it the mansion, and it definitely lives up to its name–it has something like 22 rooms.

We toured the first floor, which had the drawing room and library.  The estate was sold several times after Madison’s death, so historians have been busily trying to recreate the interior of the mansion as it might have looked during his life.  Historians are also trying to acquire original artifacts, etc. of Madison’s.

James Madison Montpelier

The estate also has a garden, called the Annie duPont Garden.  During Madison’s life, he maintained {well, probably his slaves maintained it actually} a vegetable garden of 4 acres {I wonder how many pounds of food I could grow on 4 acres?!}.  The 2 acre Annie duPont Garden is a replica of the gardens that Madison and his wife Dolly would have had during their lives.

James Madison Montpelier Garden

About 500 yards from the house, is the original homestead site called Mount Pleasant.  Madison’s grandfather originally acquired the land {about 4000 acres at the time} and built a home he called Mount Pleasant.  Madison’s father later built the framework of Madison’s house, James and Dolly continued to add onto Montpelier in phases throughout their lives, creating the mansion it is today.

James Madisons Montpelier Cemetery

The Madison family cemetery where James is buried is also on the grounds.  Dolly moved to Washington D.C. after Jame’s death and was buried there.  She has since been moved back the Montpelier cemetery.

A couple hundred yards from that lies the slave cemetery.  Madison had slaves his whole life–they ran the plantation {mostly tobacco}, maintained the gardens and house, and did some blacksmithing.  Historians at the site are trying to uncover the lives, names, etc. of the slaves that lived at Montpelier so that their stories can also be part of the estate.

James Madisons Montpelier Horses

Their is an old growth forest that is open to the public for hiking.  It is almost completely undisturbed, so it looks just as it would have during Madison’s time.

James Madisons Montpelier Slave Housing

The South Yard and Stable Quarters are framework replicas of the slave quarters that have been unearthed by archaeologists.  They have found glass window remnants near the South Yard where domestic slaves {slaves who worked in the mansion} lived, indicates that they lived a much better life than those who worked with the horses or on the estate and lived in the stable quarters {with clay floors and horse equipment}.

Overall, the estate is pretty impressive.  How nice would it be to just be gifted an automatic 2000 acres?  Life has sure changed a bit since James Madison’s time, huh?

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Free Kindle Books, Magnetic Poetry, Lego Crocs, 1800 Thread Count Sheets, Recipes, Coupons and More

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dog shadows

I was out in the garage yesterday and noticed this stain on the floor and it totally reminded me of Lucy the Puggle princess leaping through the garden. Her nose may not be as large… but how fun.

Have a great Thursday everyone,

Mavis

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Available Kindle Books I think are cool…

The prices on Kindle Books can change quickly, so grab them while you can. Don’t have a Kindle? Download the kindle app on your other devices. It’s easy! :)

magnetic poetry

These should keep the kiddos busy while your making dinner…

Teacher-Appreciation-Gift-Idea-Chalkboard-Painted-Herb-Pots

I was thinking it might be nice to give teacher’s a little gift to kick off the school year and thank them for taking on the monumental task of educating our kids. These Chalkboard Painted Herb Pots would make a perfect 1st Day of School teacher gift! Find more cool projects on my Arts and Crafts Pinterest Board.

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Zulily has boatloads of Crocs on sale today for the whole family. With savings up to 50% off who can resist! New to Zulily? Go HERE to Sign Up.

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A few of my favorite kitchen items:

Chaco Fathom Sandals

REI Outlet Deal of the Day - Woman’s Chaco Fathom Sandals

Inbox Dollars: Get paid to read emails. Just read them. I’m totally good at that! Seriously. Plus you get $5 just for signing up! Score.

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Discount Mags is offering a 1 year subscription to Bridal Guide Magazine for only $3.99 a year when you use code MAVIS at checkout. This deal will expire tonight  at midnight 8/21/14 EST so be sure and grab your subscription before then.

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These Grilled Chicken Kabobs with Spinach Quinoa make for the perfect summer meal. YUM!! Get the recipe HERE or Pin it for later.

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This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Homemade Pizza Dough Recipe

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homemade Pizza Dough Recipe

Making homemade pizza is so much better than that frozen cardboard junkity junk. Plus, it’s really not that tough once you get the crust down to a science. Below is the recipe I’ve been using for years. I love it because it’s pretty simple plus it tastes totally awesome. I found it on Allrecipes.com and only tweaked it a tiny bit.

The beauty is, once you figure out how to make the crust, you can experiment with all sorts of toppings and sauces and even baking methods. You can pretty much go crazy with your pizza!

homemade pizza dough

Ingredients
1 {.25 ounce} package active dry yeast or 2.5 teaspoons if you are using bulk yeast
1 cup warm water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
Cornmeal

making homemade pizza from scratch

Directions
Preheat oven to 425F. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the oil, sugar, salt and 1-1/2 cups flour. Mix until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a firm dough. Turn onto a floured surface; cover and let rest for 10 minutes.

Roll into a 13 inch circle {or rectangle depending on the type of pan you will be using}. Brush a 12 inch pizza pan with olive oil and sprinkle with cornmeal. Transfer dough to prepared pan, building up edges slightly. Do not let rise. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until browned. Add desired sauce and toppings and bake about 10 minutes longer.

Here is one of my favorite pizza recipe books if you are in need of some inspiration:

Pizza: More than 60 Recipes for Delicious Homemade Pizza $12.45

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Back to School: School Dress Codes

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School Dress Codes

It’s back to school time, and most of you are probably out stocking up on some back to school clothes for your students.  After reading an article on NPR a while back, I started wondering how much consideration you put into your school’s dress code when shopping for school clothes?

The article gave an overview of all of the potential dress code violations that principals and administrators typically face.  Shorts/skirts too short, shirts with violent/inappropriate images/words, overly revealing tops {which is highly subject to individual interpretation, some schools say no halters/spaghetti straps, while others say nothing sleeveless at all}, etc.  Being the total fashionista that I am, I’m all for dress codes.  I would even be for uniforms, myself, but the the article does state that most schools are trying to balance letting students express themselves as individuals, without allowing things to get out of hand.

On top of trying to establish dress codes, times are getting more complicated it seems.  Most dress codes are aimed at girls, as one district spokesperson describes, ”as for male vs. female dress codes, the general understanding (I think you’ll agree) is there are fewer options for males, therefore fewer opportunities to wear something inappropriate and/or unacceptable.”  The idea that females are “targeted” over males is causing some what of a stir in feminist groups.  And then, there is of course, the newer issue of transgender dressing:  What can be allowed within this group and what can’t, based on anti-discrimination?  Holy buckets, like is getting complicated.

I guess my point is, does your child’s school have strict dress code?  Is it enforced?  How do you feel about it?  How do your kids feel about it?

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

How to Grow Broccoli Raab {Start to Finish}

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Broccoli raab seed packet

Have you thought about your fall garden yet? This year I will be growing broccoli raab again. Why? Because it’s freakin’ delicious that’s why. ;) I don’t even really like broccoli, but broccoli raab? Oh heck ya, bring it on.

Brief description:  Broccoli raab is also known as asparagus broccoli, broccoletto, rapini, or rabe, .  It is grown for it’s asparagus-like shoots.  It can be used in salads and vegetable dishes or it can stand alone.

Where to Plant Broccoli Raab:  In a sunny location {though it will tolerate partial shade, but with lower yields}.  Plant in raised beds, containers, or garden beds.

brocolli raab seeds

Planting Seeds:   Plant seeds 1/8″ deep.  Thin to 1 every 4-6″ {or one per pot} when seedlings are about 2″ tall.

Growing Tips:  Broccoli raab uses up quite a bit of nitrogen, so regular fertilizing is best.  Manure and/or compost soil conditioners also help yields considerably.  Requires moderate, but consistent watering.

How to Grow Broccoli Raab {Start to Finish}

How to Harvest:  When plant reaches about 1 foot high, harvest buds and leaves just under buds with scissors.

Prep Tip:  Broccoli raab has a stronger taste than regular broccoli.  If the taste is too strong, you can tame it down considerable by blanching it.  {Blanch for 2-3 minutes in heavily salted water.}

regional-planting-guides

Are you ready to start your garden but you’re not sure when you should plant your seeds or set out your transplants? Head on over HERE and you’ll be taken to a handy dandy chart that is broken down into what vegetables should be planted {or transplanted} each month in your area.

Anyone can do this. Dirt + Seeds+ Water = Food!

~Mavis

Here is my Favorite Broccoli Raab recipe:  

broccoli raab salad
Chickpeas with Broccoli Raab and Bacon

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

12 Goals for the New Year – Week 33 of 52

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I came up with 12 goals I’d like to accomplish this year with the hopes of being able to cross one off my list per month to make them more manageable. I thought a great way to hold myself accountable to the things I want to accomplish this year would be to do a weekly update.

After all, we all need a little help staying motivated sometimes. Here’s how I am doing so far:

10 Tips for Cleaning Your Microwave

1. Clean, de-clutter and organize my entire home in 30 days or less. – So far this year I have cleaned my closet, organized my kitchendecluttered my bathroom, organized my office, gutted the garage, and tackled the laundry room. I don’t know about you but I sure love a clean microwave. ;)

old jeans

2. Fit into the same jeans I wore 8 years ago when we moved into our house. I lost the jeans! I was going to try them on yesterday but I couldn’t find them. Weird. Maybe it’s a sign. I found them. :(

black toms

3. Travel.   So far this year I have been to Boston, London, Paris, Portland, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia and Virginia and Victoria B.C

stack of reading books

4. Send my daughter to college without having a nervous breakdown thus spending a week in bed sobbing.  Done! I am happy to report she and I are doing great. The HH on the other hand is having a hard time even though I keep reassuring him she is having a blast and loves her roommates.

xray of teeth

5. Get 3 new teeth. – If all goes well I should have all my teeth filled and in place before Christmas.

lucy the puggle dog

6. Pay off my car. Done!

primitive hooked star rug

7. Finish this primitive folk art rug I started 4 years ago. Finished! It took me 6 months but I’m done.

stop to pee alongside the road

8. Do something together as a family ever Sunday. That moment when you are on vacation and your husband decides to exit the highway because he’s certain there is a gas station “just up the road” {even though there are no signs present. ANYWHERE. 20 minutes after driving down winding roads into the middle of nowhere, he then decides to wee alongside the road. Only to get back on the highway and find a Mc Donald’s 30 seconds away. Bahhhh haha! I’m sure that has never happened to you, right?

9.  Secret Plan #1 - Done! – I’ll tell you about it at the end August. 

10. Secret Plan #2 Making progress.

11. Secret Plan #3

open road

12. Convince the HH we should buy a Salt Box Style House in Colonial Williamsburg. Done! We didn’t buy a house in Colonial Williamsburg, but I did find us a house on the east coast and we LOVE it. This is a vacation home for us and as soon as I have the time to sort through all the pictures I’ve been taking, I’ll do a proper show and tell.

scooping up gravel

13. Spend at least 1 hour a day working in my garden. 

Someone has a new garden… and her name is Mavis. ;) I just have to scoop out about 5 yards of pea gravel before I can begin planting.

So there you have it, my goals for the new year.

How about YOU? How are your 2014 goals coming along?

~Mavis

P.S. YES, I know I wrote down 13 goals. I’m fairly certain I won’t be able to attain one of them. {gee, I wonder which one?} :) But I wanted to add it in there anyway because I believe in miracles. 

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

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