Wellness |

Delicious Summer Recipes: No Oven Required

2 minute read

Summer is a great opportunity to eat healthy because fresh produce is EVERYWHERE. We have found five healthy and delicious summer recipes for you to try using all that great fresh produce. Even better, none of these recipes require an oven!

Five Healthy and Delicious Summer Recipes

Clean Eating Quinoa Salad: This colorful dish uses simple ingredients like kale and sweet peppers to make a tasty salad that is both healthy and perfect for taking to-go. It also yields eight servings, so, hello lunch for an entire week!

Mediterranean Hummus Pizza: A no-bake pizza that only takes ten minutes? Yes, please! This pizza is so quick and easy that it’s sure to be a favorite. Not only is it fast, but it’s completely customizable. You can add or subtract any veggies you want to make it fit your family’s tastes.

Shredded Chicken and Avocado Nachos: Two words: rotisserie chicken. Picking up a tender, juicy chicken at the grocery store can save you so much time and energy. This healthy nacho recipe can be modified as much as you like, but as is, only calls for five ingredients and can come together for a nutritious lunch in a matter of minutes!

Apple, Almond, Cheddar Sandwich: It’s not just another ham and cheese. This sandwich is packed with protein and rich flavors that complement each other perfectly. And again, recipes are meant to be broken, so don’t feel like you need to stick to only the ingredients listed. Try adding some onion for a kick, or maybe use a crunchy almond butter for more texture.

Roast Beef Summer Rolls: Instead of actually roasting beef, these summer rolls use deli roast beef to make your life easier and your cooking more efficient. Who loves saving time in the kitchen? Everyone. The filling and wrapping of the rolls takes some time, but the color and flavor of this recipe is completely worth the forty minutes. Making these from scratch is a definite plus that everyone will appreciate.

 

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These Easy Summer Desserts Are a Great Way to Keep Your Cool

3 minute read

Crafts for Kids: Easy Summer Desserts to keep cool

As your family starts to settle into that summer groove, you’re surely more likely to entertain at home. And why not? From pool parties to barbecues, summer is a great time to hone your hosting skills with your favorite guests. This easy summer dessert is the perfect DIY treat for any sweltering summer occasion. Sweet, sour, and, most importantly, refreshingly cool. You can quickly and easily whip up a few Raspberry Sorbet Lemon Bowls for the entire crew this summer.

Give it a try using the instructions below. Feel free to get creative, adapting this recipe to try other flavors! We’re thinking maybe a refreshing lemon sorbet in frozen lime bowls would be delicious. You could even try using a creamy vanilla bean sorbet in zesty orange bowls for an orange creamsicle!

Don’t forget to take pictures for Instagram and tag @AprilaireCo and #KeepYourCool so we can see you and your guests enjoying these refreshing summer desserts. Your guests will love them!

MATERIALS NEEDED

Lemons

Raspberry Sorbet

Knife

Spoons

Washi Tape

INSTRUCTIONS

Step One: Cut your lemons in half in such as way that the bumpy ends of the lemon are on either side of your knife.

Step Two: Carefully cut the bumps off of your lemons in such a way that it doesn’t puncture through and cut a hole in your lemon bowl. This will serve as the base of your summer dessert so that it stands upright, and we certainly don’t want our sweet sorbet to ooze out of the bottom.

easy-summer-desserts-lemon-sorbetStep Three: Carve out the deliciously sour fruit of the lemon so that the peel itself resembles a zesty, miniature lemon bowl. Place your miniature lemon bowls in the freezer to get them nice and chilly, perfect for a hot summer’s day.

easy-summer-desserts-sorbetStep Four: While the lemon bowls freeze, wrap brightly-colored washi tape around the tops of each spoon, leaving room for a small spoon flag. If you wish, use a pair of scissors to cut notches in the flags.

easy-summer-dessertsStep Five: Scoop raspberry sorbet into your lemon bowls and place your spoon flags inside each for a brilliantly delicious display of color.

easy-summer-desserts-raspberry-sorbet

Step Six: Stick your spoon flags in your creations, serve on a hot summer day, and watch your refreshingly easy summer dessert quickly disappear!

easy-summer-desserts-raspberry-lemon-sorbet

 

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Find New Local Family Fun Activities this Summer

2 minute read

Bored? Find New Summer Activities in your Immediate Area

This summer you may find yourself in the place you’ve lived all your life feeling like you’ve explored everything there is to explore, or maybe you’re in a brand new place with endless explorations ahead and you don’t know where to start.

Either way, we guarantee you can find plenty of ways to make your summer fun fresher than ever!

Let’s start with you hometowners. Depending on the size of your city, it might be a challenge to find some new activities or sights for the summer and that’s when creativity is key. Become a “local tourist” to see your city through a new lens.

Explore

  • a local coffee shop or a downtown boutique that you’ve walked by a thousand times but never stepped foot in. Just make sure to keep an eye on the kids around the expensive breakables and hot beverages. 🙂

Check out

  • your local library. Most have a calendar full of events each summer (especially for kids and teens), and if nothing else you can find a new book. Or if reading really isn’t your thing, consider some of the other resources a library has to offer.

“Chase for an ace”

  • You decide what it is you want to “chase”; best smoothie, juiciest burger, freshest cheese curds, and order one from every place you can. Split just one order every time so you keep the cost down and your appetite up until you’ve tried every variation. Once you decide which is an absolute “ace”, you’ve found your go-to for the rest of the summer.

Visit

  • your city hall’s bulletin board or check your community’s website. Chances are, there are concerts, sports leagues, rummage sales, and more in your area that you never knew about. This is a great way to embrace your locality and get to know more of your neighbors.

New in town? Don’t even know where the city hall is, or what it is for that matter? Fear not, this is 2018 and there’s an app for that.

Apps for finding local events!

  • Meetup is the perfect app for finding friends and getting involved in your community by allowing you to create or join groups for just about any interest. Whether you’re looking for a new hobby and trying to find people to join in on your current favorites, this app does the job.
  • Hangtime is an app targeted at college students, but really anyone can use it to coordinate schedules with friends and see what events they’re attending. You can even link it with your Facebook account and it will suggest local events based on your recent activity.
  • Songkick is for the music lovers who want a heads up on any or all concerts coming to the area! You can even import your music libraries from Spotify or Apple Music to be sure you get all the updates on your favorite artists.

 

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Summertime Schedule: How to keep your kids busy and reduce stress

2 minute read

Summer chores chart keep kids busy during their break

What are your kids up to this summer?

With endless digital entertainment options at their fingertips, it can be easy for kids to barely leave the house. But with so many adventures to be had when it’s nice outside, that would be a shame. As a parent, you have an awesome opportunity to set guidelines ensuring your kids have a great summer.

Summer Routines

Children thrive on routines. While every family’s summer routine will look different, it can be helpful to have a consistent schedule to organize around.

Here are just a few of the benefits that come from having a regular routine:

  1. Consistent Sleep – When a child’s internal clock stays “on time”, it helps them fall asleep easier and get a full night’s rest (8-10 hours)
  2. Household Harmony – Predictability reduces stress and anxiety for parents and kids alike. Make sure everyone is aware of the routine and respects it
  3. Preparing For Life – From grooming to work habits, children who practice skills–like reading for thirty minutes every afternoon or brushing their teeth before bed– are better at time management and have a greater sense of self discipline as they get older
  4. Gaining Independence – When children know expectations, they don’t have to be reminded to finish work or make their bed. They can do it on their own and feel a sense of pride and confidence.

Summer Chores

A major benefit of having the kids around all summer is the opportunity to lessen your load with household duties. If they have extra free time, spreading out chores is a great way to keep them busy, teach responsibility, and keep the house clean all summer long.

Here’s a great resource for creating a Chore Chart of age-appropriate responsibilities.

And here are four more fun and creative ways to incorporate a chore chart:

  • Chore kits: This much prep work and organization might not be for everyone, but it sure seems effective. Try putting baskets in each room that needs cleaning with a list of what to do on the outside of the basket and allthe supplies needed inside the basket
  • Chore sticks: A simple and effective way to make doing chores more fun for your kids. Have them pick one to three sticks depending on their age and let the suspense get them revved up for completing the tasks
  • Chore cookie sheet: Great for helping kids that can’t yet read because it uses pictures to represent the chores that need to be done
  • Chore door hanger: Perfect way for older kids to take ownership of their expected responsibilities

Archive |

Your Summer, Stress-Free

2 minute read

When you’re a kid the countdown to summer is exciting: three months with no school to wake up for, no tests to cram for, and no heavy textbooks to haul around. But as an adult, summers can be quite the opposite: three months of activities to organize, family picnics to host, and vacations to plan.

So how to manage the stress of a hectic summer and still make it one to remember? We’ve got a few ideas for you.

Keep a routine:

A good night of sleep does wonders for stress levels. Try to keep wake-up and bedtime schedules the same as they were when school was in session. That will make it easier for you to plan and organize, and it will encourage the kids to do something active and exciting with their summer vacation.

The Sunshine Vitamin:

Spend time outside each day to soak up the sunshine and boost your Vitamin D. It’s been shown to affect mood and has other potential benefits for the body. If the forecast is blistering, try to get outside early in the morning or late at night to avoid the worst of the heat.

Summer Sales Event:

Cash in on all your spring cleaning by having a garage sale or selling your unwanted items online for some extra cash. It’s a great way to get a jump start on your winter holiday budget.

Spend Smart:

Set a firm budget and stick to it. Using only cash to pay for meals and activities on vacations is a great way to keep your spending in check.

Flex Travel:

If your schedule allows, try to travel and explore on weekdays to avoid the higher weekend prices and crowds. It’s likely that you’ll have to deal with big crowds anytime during the summer, but if you’re using all of our other tips you’ll be so stress-free that it simply won’t matter.

Get to the Beach!:

Sunshine, sand, and waves are the perfect recipe for relaxation and refreshment. Whether it’s the ocean, lake, or floating down a river, you’ll make lasting memories around the water.

While you’re enjoying your time at the beach, do your part to keep the oceans and waterways healthy! World Oceans Day, a global celebration of our magnificent oceans, is focusing on preventing plastic pollution on June 8th, 2018. And it’s easy for you and your family to get involved!

Head over to their Facebook page or check out some of their free resources. You can join the community of people and countries who are making the preservation of oceans a priority for the good of future generations and for the well-being of our planet. Here are a few tips to consider:

Healthy Home | Family |

Summer Prep For Your Home and Your Family

2 minute read

Woohoo! It’s finally warm outside and that means we can stop complaining about the cold and snow and start complaining about being hot. (A good problem, right?) With the changing temperatures, it’s important to be aware of how your home and family are impacted. So, we’ve put together a few tips on summer prep.

Summer Prep For You And Your Family

It takes time for our bodies to adjust to the rising temperatures this time of year so here are some important ways to keep cool when planning your outdoor adventures:

Drink More Water

Increase your water intake from 8-10 glasses to 12-15 glasses of water every day. Staying hydrated is important for protecting yourself from the sun and for normal functioning.

Protect Your Skin

Use this chart from Hawaiian Tropic to determine which SPF is right for you and consider a cooling sunblock with aloe.

Camping:

  • Pitch your tent in the shade or reflect the heat away with thermal survival blankets
  • Camp near water for a quick dip or wetting your bandana
  • Get a fan tent or leave your vents open to get a maximum breeze

The Beach:

  • Rock that wide-brimmed hat for constant shade
  • Eat cold treats for a quick cool down or try spicy foods which cause your internal body temperature to rise so your body naturally works to cool down
  • Target your neck, ankles, wrists, back of your knees, and armpits with ice or water to cool down your whole body without getting completely soaked

Hiking:

  • Hike early in the day and try your best to plan a shaded hike. Even if your whole hike isn’t shaded, find shaded areas to rest
  • Pace yourself; it’s important to take frequent breaks for rest and hydration
  • Cover up in lightweight, light-colored clothing since dark colors absorb the sun’s rays and make you hotter. By slowing your loss of fluids, covering your exposed skin actually keeps you cooler than wearing less clothing

Summer Prep For Your Home

Now it’s time to get your home ready for the summer. Here are a couple tips for keeping your home cool.

Air Conditioner Checkup

In order to make sure your unit is in working order, you need to test it before the temperatures become intolerable. The air filter might need to be replaced and you will need to clear any debris from around the vents and exhausts, and make sure to remove any dirt from the unit itself. If all else fails, call a professional.

Turn the Breeze Around

Did you know that ceiling fans are made to rotate with the seasons? Clockwise in the winter to help circulate heat that’s risen, and counterclockwise in the summer to increase a cool breeze downward. So rotate those blades to get maximum cooling!

Basement Prep

If your basement is completely or partially underground, it will naturally stay cooler during the summer. And if you have a finished basement, you and the family can spend more time down there during the warm months. Just make sure the electricity and plumbing are functioning and there’s no residual mold or mildew.

Healthy Home |

Summer Home Projects In A Week Or Less

2 minute read

Planning on home renovations this summer? Don’t let them steal your sunshine! Here are some easy, yet effective, summer home projects that you can complete in less than a week—perfect if you’re tight on time and want to keep your budget in check.

Five Easy Summer Home Projects

Indoor Summer Home Projects

House Cleanup: Cleaning your house takes teamwork and planning. And you can easily tidy up your home in a week if you get the whole family involved on a room-by-room cleanup schedule. One day each week, pick a room (or have everyone clean their own bedrooms) and tackle it as a family. You can end each cleanup with fun rewards like taking everyone for ice cream or going to a movie.

Update Light Fixtures: Still have the same light fixtures as when you moved into your house? Time for an upgrade! Major changes may require the help of an electrician or create the need to replace drywall, but there are some easy fixes you can make in just a few days.

  • Paint your existing light fixtures with a modern color and finish. (Ex. Go from dated brass to a sleek matte black or white.)
  • Add new lampshades with a modern shape and color.
  • Buy a conversion kit that makes it simple to go from recessed lighting to a hanging fixture.

Create a Reading Area: Having a dedicated space in your home for reading and relaxing is one of the smartest investments you can make. To start, you’ll need to find the ideal spot, somewhere that’s somewhat secluded and quiet, one that you’re not otherwise using. Usually, corners, nooks, or alcoves work great for this. Even an unused closet would be perfect. Once you have the space picked out, it’s all about making it comfortable. Buy pillows and blankets and add in some soft lighting. You can even make the lights dimmable so the space can work as a reading room or a nap area!

Outdoor Summer Home Projects

Build a Garden Bed: All of these summer home projects are not limited to the indoors. If you have the yard space (or even a small patio), it’s time to put in that garden you’ve always talked about! Once you measure out the area you have to work with, it’s easy to find a pre-made wooden frame to build your raised garden in. (They’re available and pre-treated at most home improvement stores.) Then a couple trips to the garden section for soil, seeds, and fertilizer and you’re well on your way to homegrown produce or beautiful flowers.

Pressure Wash Exterior: This one will only take a day or two, but it makes a big difference. Many home improvement stores rent out pressure washers, which use high-powered streams of water to blast away dirt and grime. You can use it on your house siding, sidewalks, decks, and other durable surfaces that need cleaning. While it’s fun and oddly satisfying to use a pressure washer, it’s important that you take safety precautions. Use eye protection and heavy-duty gloves, and start the process by spraying a detergent, which will make cleaning easier and reduce the risk of damage to your home.