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Life Hacks for the Kitchen from Cosmopolitan

Cleaning the kitchen is never going to be as fun as, say, a weekend at the beach. Or even as fun as cleaning your room. But it's gotta get done because living in a vermin-free home is an important part of being a successful adult. And even if you don't have a single cleaning product in your home, you can still totally make your kitchen sparkle. Plus, there's a certain feeling of pride you'll get when you manage to clean your oven with nothing but lemon juice and a rubber band.

Quick note on safety: Many essential oils are highly concentrated and can pose a danger to cats and dogs. If you have pets, do some research on ingredients to avoid. Here's a great place to start.

1. Natural Refrigerator Cleanser


Because it's cold enough not to smell bad, the fridge is often forgotten when it comes to keeping the kitchen clean. But that's where you keep your food, so don't let it get gross. The bad news is, yes, you will definitely have to take everything out of it. The good news? All you need to do after that is give everything a quick spray with this mixture of two parts water and one part white vinegar (plus some lemon oil to make it smell nice), and wipe it out. 

Learn how to make an easy, natural refrigerator cleanser from One Good Thing by Jillee.

2. DIY Cleansing Wipes


Disposable cleansing wipes can get pretty expensive and are bad for the Earth to boot. But it's surprisingly simple to make your own reusable ones with an old T-shirt, equal parts vinegar and filtered water, and some drops of essential oils. Bonus: They smell awesome.

To find out how, head over to DIY Natural.

3. DIY Lemon Cleanser


It's easy to make a homemade natural disinfectant with just borax, citrus peel, and vinegar. This DIY spray is good for cleaning kitchen surfaces, and does double duty in the bathroom as well.

Find out how on One Good Thing By Jillee.

4. Easy Oven Cleaner


Oven cleaning doesn't have to involve lots of harsh chemicals. In fact, all it takes is a little elbow grease with a mixture of 1/2 cup baking soda and a few tablespoons of water. 

Wear gloves!

Get the how-to from The Kitchn.

5. Deep-Clean Cutting Boards


Wooden cutting boards that see a lot of use can have a grimy build-up on the surface. To freshen up your cutting board, halve a lemon, pour a generous amount of salt on the board, and use the lemon as if it were a sponge to scrub off any old residue. Next, use a scraper to scape up the salt and lemon mixture. Finally, rinse with water and set out to dry.

Get the recipe from Jamie Oliver.

6. Refresh Your Coffee Pot


Frequent use and a narrow opening make coffee pots of all kinds hard to clean. Happily, all it takes is a quick vinegar rinse to freshen up a coffee pot and remove built-up coffee and water stains. Running a mixture of vinegar and water through your coffee maker can also freshen drip machines.

Get the how-to from The Kitchn.

7. Easy Way to Clean the Microwave


The ease with which microwaved food explodes leads to a lot of microwave messes that need to be cleaned. And since you'll be making food you want to eat in that microwave, you'll want a natural, totally easy way to clean it. And you can! Put a wet sponge inside, spray the whole inside with water mixed with essential oils, and microwave for two minutes. Let the sponge cool, use it to wipe everything up, and you're done.

Get the details from One Good Thing by Jillee.

8. Clean Cast Iron


Since you can't use soap on cast iron, clean and protect your cast iron skillet by cleaning any gunk with a mixture of olive oil and salt. Simply pour a tablespoon of olive oil into the skillet, add coarse sea salt, and scrub with a cloth. Once the skillet is clean, wipe out the salt and finish with a thin layer of olive oil.

Get the recipe from The Cookie Rookie.

9. Freshen the Dishwasher


It may not have occurred to you that your dishwasher needs to be cleaned, seeing as how it is a thing for cleaning itself, but in fact every now and again it's a good idea to freshen things up. Getting a fresher dishwasher is as simple as running a cycle with vinegar and another to rinse. Easy!

Learn the easy way to freshen the dishwasher from One Good Thing by Jillee.

10. Bon Ami and Bar Keeper's Friend


Strictly speaking, this isn't a kitchen hack since it's using cleaning products for their intended purpose (cleaning), but Bon Ami and Bar Keeper's Friend are two relatively obscure cleaners you should have in your kitchen. Bon Ami works wonders on enamel and Bar Keeper's Friend is great for stainless steel, both of which feature prominently in well-appointed contemporary kitchens.

23 Unbelievable Beauty Hacks Using Only Household Items

Elizabeth Stark is a food writer with a passion for seasonal food, great desserts, and inadvisable wine pairings. Read more on her blog, Brooklyn Supper.

Follow Elizabeth on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook.

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10 Reasons Being Single On Valentine's Day Is Awesome

  • Valentine's Day is often referred to by those who aren't in relationships as SAD -- SIngles Awareness Day. But flying solo on February 14 needn't be an unpleasant experience. Here are 10 reasons it's actually quite enjoyable, courtesy of Thought Catalog:
    1. You can buy yourself your own crappy drugstore chocolate.
    2. No stress about finding the perfect gift. 
    3. You can do literally whatever you want to do. 
    4. You can go out and get really drunk with your friends if you want to. 
    5. You can stay in and wear your pajamas all day with your hair in a dirty bun. 
    6. You can have your friends as Valentines. 
    7. You can watch every sappy romance on TV and make as much fun of them as you want to.
    8. Alternately, you can watch every sappy romance on TV and cry your guts out. 
    9. You don't have to wear uncomfortable lingerie. 
    10. You can buy lots of candy when it goes on sale on February 15.


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New "Normal" Barbie

  • New "Normal Barbie" Comes With Acne, Scars & Stretch Marks

  • An artist named Nickolay Lamm has created a "Normal Barbie" that has the body of an average American woman and comes with add-ons like acne, scars and stretch marks. The dolls, which were designed last year and are now available for purchase, are intended to show kids that everyone has flaws and that they shoud be embraced. The stickers allow children to customize their dolls by adding freckles, stitches and grass stains, among other features. Lamm also made a video that shows how second graders respond to a realistically-proportioned fashion doll. The response is overwhelmingly positive, and includes comments like "I think she's really pretty," and "She looks like my sister."

    Who do you think about "Normal" Barbie?

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People : Nickolay Lamm


Have you ever been to any of these spots?

  • The 20 Most Romantic Fall Getaways 

  • Travel and Leisure magazine has compiled a list of the 20 most romantic fall getaways. Here are the top 10 (for the full list, check out the link):

    1. Middleburg, Virginia 
    2. Willamette Valley, Oregon 
    3. Acadia National Park, Maine
    4. Greenough, Montana 
    5. Bradford, Pennsylvania
    6. Big Sur, California
    7. Charleston, South Carolina
    8. Park City, Utah 
    9. Banard, Vermont 
    10. Ashville, North Carolina


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Museums that are a must see

TripAdvisor users have named the Art Institute of Chicago the best museum in the world in the site's annual Travelers' Choice awards. The global museum list, released yesterday, ranks 25 of the world's best museums based on an algorithm that factors quality and quantity of TripAdvisor reviews over a 12-month period. The other American museums to crack the rankings' top 10 include the Getty Center in L.A. and The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Here are the top-ranked U.S. institutions on the list
  1. Art Institute of Chicago
  2. The Getty Center (L.A.)
  3. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York)
  4. National WWII museum (New Orleans)
  5. National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.)
  6. National Air and Space Museum (Washington, D.C.)
  7. USS Midway Museum (San Diego)
  8. Chihuly Garden and Glass (Seattle)
  9. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum (Tucson, Arizona)
  10. Newseum (Washington, D.C.)
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My stomach hurts just thinking about this.....

  • 23 Foods You Need to Deep-Fry Immediately

  • Ready to take gluttony to a whole new level? Then check out Buzzfeed's list of 23 foods you absolutely must try deep-fried. Here are several of their picks (see the link for the full list, as well as for recipes):

    • Cheesecake
    • Corn on the cob
    • Root-beer floats
    • Bacon
    • Baconnaise 
    • Avocado
    • Tequila-soaked cake
    • Cookie dough
    • Coca-Cola
    • Watermelon


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This is a Speech

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Do you need an energy boost in the morning?

Looking to put your coffee addiction on the backburner for awhile? Thankfully, there are other ways to energize during a workday. In fact, FastCo argues that the following six tactics are actually better for your productivity than a cuppa joe:
  1. Green tea
  2. Taking a break
  3. Power naps
  4. Hitting the gym
  5. Turning up the heat in the office
  6. Eating some chocolate and watching a funny YouTube video
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Ignore No More

New York-area mom Sharon Standifird was fed up with her kids ignoring her phone calls, so she decided to do something about it. Eventually, Standifird developed an app called Ignore No More, which enables parents to effectively lock their child's phone from afar if they won't pick up. If a kid wants the password required to regain access to her usual array of smartphone accoutrements, she has to call home to get it. “Bradley needs to call me because I’m the person that has the unlock password,” Standifird says, in reference to her son. “It takes away texting, it takes away the gaming, it takes away calling their friends.” However, the child will still be able to call 911, should an emergency arise.
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Locations : New York
People : HoweverSharon Standifird


1999----Forgot Jack Black was in this video

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