Friday, September 26, 2014

Plus Size Swimwear - Look Slimmer When You Wear It.

When you wear the right size plus size swimwear, you can actually look slimmer than you are. With plus size swimwear, ladies who are a little overweight can look their best and still enjoy the hot summer weather. Wearing swimwear that is too small shows out the bulges much more and makes them seem even bigger than they are. Plus size swimwear does not mean old-fashioned styles because plus size swimwear is available in all the latest fashions.

photo credit: plus-model-mag.com

photo credit: dailyvenusdiva.com
It is often hard to find plus size swimwear when you visit a regular department store. All you can find on the racks are the tiny bikinis that probably wouldn't fit around your leg. You start to wonder whether you are the only one that has this problem with the lack of plus size swimwear that is available.

photo credit: alwaysforme.com
There are specialty stores that do carry plus size swimwear lines for women. Because this is often a special line that the store carries each year, it is very hard to find something unique. Most of the time, the swim wear is all the same color and style. And plus size swimwear may also be very expensive and this doesn't fit in your budget. A lot of women want to find cheap plus size swimwear because they are buying it for a holiday and probably won't wear it that often when they return home. You wear plus size swimwear on holidays, bring it home with you.

photo credit: stylishdressing.com
One place where you will easily be able to find cheap plus size swimwear is at the online retailers. These retailers do not carry an inventory and most of them do not have a bricks and mortar store. When you place an order for plus size swimwear, you can get it cheap because the retailer doesn't need to have as much mark up to make a profit. One advantage of ordering your plus size swimwear online is the wide variety you have to choose from.

Online stores have plus sizes in swimwear from designers that would cost you a fortune at a regular store. This is one way you can have the latest fashions in the swim wear you choose and the prices are often so cheap, you might decide to buy two or more swimwear items. Finding plus size swimwear doesn't have to be frustrating - do it at your own pace and time by shopping online.

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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Encouragement Quotes: How to Make Your Own Positive Thinking Motivational Quote Poster and Postcards

Using encouragement quotes, quotes on positive thinking and other positive phrases to motivate yourself to take action is a great tool for success. Keeping these good quotes around you, however, is more important than most people would first guess. This article explains the importance of keeping quotes for positive thinking, positive attitude quotes and other good quotes around you, as well as tells you how to embark on making your own postcards and posters to get you going in the right direction.

photo credit: andreatheseeker.blogspot.com

photo credit: quotes-pictures.picphotos.net
The one best reason for keeping encouragement quotes, positive thinking quotes and other positive phrases around you constantly is because even when you "forget" to look at them, your subconscious mind still "sees" them. This gives you a constant input of positivity quotes that create a very positive mindset. Why? Because you are subconsciously focusing on the positive, rather than the negative.

photo credit: inspirationfeed.com
This is because whatever you see and hear gets registered in your subconscious. So, even if you're "not listening" to the television or radio, your mind is listening intently and filing away everything it hears. So, what you want to do is keep your mind focused on positive phrases and positive sayings, and one of the best ways to do this is to keep encouragement quotes, positivity quotes, hope quotes and positive attitude quotes around you so your subconscious mind "continually absorbs" them, even when you're not looking at them or thinking about them.

When using encouragement quotes to uplift your mood and spirit, it is important to choose ones that give you a physical "zing of good feeling" when you read them. Why? Because this is your emotional intelligence telling you that you will benefit greatly by having that positive motivational quote around you. Positive thinking quotes, positivity quotes and other positive sayings actually carry with them a positive energy. The stronger the "zing" you feel from your encouragement quotes, the stronger impact they can have on your energy.

photo credit: theberry.com
So, first you want to choose emotionally charged quotes that are just right for you.

Next, you want to find a good postcard template that you can fill in with your own quotes. After you download the template, you can usually put it into a computer program such as Word or Open Office, and then type in your quotes. If you don't know how to use the computer well enough to do that, you can just print out the template and handwrite onto them your own beautiful encouragement quotes, positive thinking quotes and other positive sayings.

photo credit: quotes.wishbowl.org

photo credit: mayagraceinternational.com
One suggestion would be that if you like one particular template, to download it and use it several times in different arrangements such as horizontally or vertically in a collection to showcase a variety of your encouragement quotes, positive phrases, positive attitude quotes and other positivity quotes.
You could also make up the same positive motivation quote postcard (or blow it up to a poster if the resolution is high enough) and cascade it in a set of three posters on your wall because using repetition in this fashion works well.

There are a variety of ways to use encouragement quotes, hope quotes, quotes on positive thinking and other good quotes to keep your energy uplifted and motivated. Once you have found positive sayings that have a strong emotional charge to them, a few good templates where you can put your positive quotes, and get a bit creative about decorating your walls with all of your positive quotes, you're well on your way to becoming more positive on a moment to moment basis - even when you're not thinking about it.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

How to Make Super Easy Orzo Pasta Salad

This quick and easy recipe for orzo pasta salad makes an elegant and enticing garden-fresh salad that is loaded with bright, summery color and flavor - making it the perfect summer side dish.
A sophisticated pasta salad that looks and tastes like one of those fancy gourmet deli salads, this one is miles ahead of that rubbery tri-color pasta salad we've all seen again and again.

photo credit: tastespotting.com
This no-mayo pasta salad is also safe for picnics, beach trips, boat rides and relaxing backyard BBQs with friends and family. Kid friendly too!

You can even make this one ahead as it holds up well once assembled.
Try this orzo pasta salad for your next summer fete and see if you don't get rave reviews!
This orzo pasta salad is one of my go-to recipes when I need to bring a summer salad or side dish to an outdoor event. Easy to make and beautiful to serve, this one is always a hit.

The recipe calls for orzo pasta, a small rice-like pasta that holds up exceptionally well in cold salad and absorbs the flavors of the dressing and the other ingredients without getting mushy or chewy. Ripe but firm cherry tomatoes bring a sweet summery taste. Use plenty of fresh basil and parsley for color, subtle flavor and brightness. Small bits of crumbled feta cheese add a welcome saltiness that perfectly suits the al dente pasta. A light toss with a good quality Greek vinaigrette dressing is all your need to bring the flavors together and keep the dish moist and delicious. Enjoy!

Ingredients
  • 1 lb. ( a box) of orzo pasta
  • 6-8 oz. of organic feta cheese (avoid the processed crumbles for best flavor)
  • A very large handful (2 cups) of gently torn fresh basil leaves, (don't cut it or it will bruise and turn dark)
  • A large handful (1 cup) of fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, rough chopped.
  • A pint of cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 cup of a good quality Greek vinaigrette, home made or bottled, with extra as needed.
  • Plenty of fresh-cracked black pepper
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of salt for the pasta water
Directions
photo credit: tastespotting.com
  1. Rinse the herbs and the tomatoes and set on paper towels or linen to dry completely.

  2. Put a large pot of water (4 quarts) on to boil. Place a small-holed collander in the sink.

  3. While the water is heating... tear the basil by stacking the leaves, same side up, and gently tearing off thumb-size pieces from the stack. If the leaves are small, use them whole. Set aside.

  4. Rough chop the parley leaves and set aside. Discard the stems.

  5. Slice the tomatoes in half and set aside.

  6. When the pasta water is at a rolling boil, add a generous tablespoon of salt and drop in the orzo. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Cook according to the package directions until just al dente (still firm).

  7. Drain the orzo in a collander and immediately rinse with plenty of cold running water to stop the cooking process and rinse off any starch from the pasta. Drain well.

  8. Place the drained pasta in a large bowl and gently toss with 1/2 cup of the Greek dressing until thoroughly mixed. The flavors in the dressing will be absorbed by the still-warm pasta as it cools. The oil in the dressing also keeps the pasta from sticking together.

  9. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap down over the pasta in the bowl. Allow to cool completely in the fridge.

  10. When the pasta is cold, add the tomatoes, the basil, and the parsley.

  11. Cut the feta into 1/4 inch slices and then use your fingers to crumble the feta into pea size bits. It's a messy process but worth it to use the non-processed feta! Add plenty of fresh-cracked black pepper and toss well until everything is nicely incorporated. Adjust the amounts of the ingredients to your taste. You shouldn't need to add any salt as the feta is very salty and the pasta has been flavored during cooking.

  12. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of dressing and toss well. If it is too dry, add more dressing, a splash at a time and stir it in well. Greek dressing is quite strong and it should just compliment the subtle flavors of the salad, not overwhelm it. Don't drench the salad in dressing. It should be moist but not soggy.

  13. Transfer to your serving bowl or plastic container and cover with a lid or plastic wrap. Keeps well in the fridge up to a week.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Vegetable Gardening - A Hobby for Everyone

The Rewards of Vegetable Gardening
If you love to have fresh produces in the spring and summer, you should consider creating a home vegetable garden. Growing a vegetable garden is a fun and healthy hobby that anyone can excel at.
While gardening, you may find that your troubles and stresses of the day simply float away. Home vegetable gardening relieves stress and allows you to be out in the sun. Vegetable gardening is proven to lower blood pressure and clear the mind. Also, the act of nurturing plants and watching them grow is rather soothing. And it can look good too!

photo credit: planetnatural.com
The Pros of Organic Gardening
One great aspect of home vegetable gardening is that it does not require a bunch of chemicals. Therefore, home vegetable gardening allows you to have more natural, juicy, and healthier vegetables that are also better for the environment. Using a lot of chemicals on vegetables is not only unhealthy for your body, but also takes a large toll on the environment. Growing your own vegetable garden and using less chemicals yields natural food.

Organic vegetables are always the best-tasting because they will not be picked until they are completely ripe and you are ready to pick them. One more pro of growing your own organic vegetable garden is that it will save you money. Instead of buying all your organic vegetables at the store, you will have your own selection of vegetables at your disposal whenever you want them.
Anyone can create a home vegetable garden. As long as you have dirt somewhere, you can create an outdoor vegetable garden in the solid ground. Even if you don't have a plot of dirt, you can buy a few pots and create a container garden.

photo credit: newhomesrule.com
Vegetable Gardening on Solid Ground
Before starting your vegetable garden, should keep in mind these simple thoughts: size, location, and soil.

First of all, we'll discuss the location. You must plot your garden in an area with plenty of shade and sufficient drainage. You must nurture your plants by putting them in a place that receives about 6 hours of sunlight each day. Every plant is different and requires a different amount of light, but the average is six hours a day.

Therefore, do not plot your garden in a shady place! Also, make sure that your garden has adequate draining. If you place your garden at the bottom of a hill, water will flood your plants during the wet season; this is a common mistake that many beginning planters make. By locating your gardens away from bottoms of hills and other spots where water is likely to collect, you will prevent your vegetables from drowning!

Second of all, let's talk about size. You should decide how big you want your garden to be initially. Remember that you should start out small and expand later; otherwise the size of the garden may overwhelm you. I recommend starting out with a garden space of 25 square feet or less. After you get the hang of it, you can expand your vegetable garden as much as you would like.

Third, let's talk about soil. Soil is one of the most important aspects of gardening, so it is very important to have good soil to produce a good garden. The best type of soil is slightly loose and easy to till. Therefore, stay away from soil that is hard-packed. If your yard does not have a lot of good soil in it, you can fix this problem by using mulch or compost in your garden. Alternatively you can buy good soil from your local nursery.

photo credit: winterberrygarden.com
Mulch is usually an organic covering, such as straw, leaves, compost, or peat that you can cover your garden with to enrich the soil, prevent weed growth, and prevent excessive evaporation of water. Compost consists of any organic particle, such as dead leaves, manure, or (most commonly) kitchen scraps. People put compost in their yards to improve the soil and provide nutrients for plants. Composting kills two birds with one stone; it is great for your garden and cuts down on your trash.
If you address the location, size, and soil of your garden, you will have a booming vegetable garden in no time. Also, some of these tips will also help those of you who choose to have a container vegetable garden.

Vegetable Gardening in Containers
photo credit: gardennlawn.com
Container gardening is the best type of gardening for many people. If you do not have a good plot of land to garden on, container gardening is your best bet. It is the most practical way to garden for those of us not lucky enough to have large plots of soiled land to garden on.
There are many pros to container gardening. You can place your plants wherever you want: in your living room, on your patio, etc., so that you can add color and radiance wherever you would like. With container gardening, you can easily place plants wherever they receive the best growing conditions. Another pro is that you will have fewer pests eating your plants if they are in containers rather than in the ground.

Although almost any plant will grow just fine in a container, there are some that grow exceptionally well in containers. These are: salad greens, spinach, tomatoes, eggplant, Swiss chard, radish, beets, peppers, and bush beans.

The con of container gardening is that they require more upkeep and maintenance. You must check up on and water many container plants everyday.

Most vegetable crops grow well in 5-gallon containers. No matter what size container you use, make sure it has adequate drainage to ensure a bountiful garden. You should add about 1 inch of coarse gravel in the bottom of the container to monitor drainage. Learn how to prepare the containers of each type of plant for a nice and low-cost indoor garden.

Gardening Problems You Can Tackle
There are two notorious enemies of gardening: weeds and pests. Here is some basic information and helpful hints on how to tackle each of these problems:

One problem a person may have in plant gardening is staying on top of all of the weeds. In order to prevent weeds from taking over your garden, you should go out daily and pick the weeds. Picking weeds may seem like a dull task, but if you have the right attitude, it can actually be quite relaxing and stress relieving.

Where there's a garden, there are bugs. Unless you want to use a bunch of chemicals, you must go outside and kill any damaging bugs on your plants. But make sure not to kill the good bugs, such as ladybugs or praying mantis, because they kill the bad bugs that eat your plants. In fact, you can buy good bugs at your local plant store and put them in your garden to help kill pests. Because no bugs kill big pests such as grasshoppers, you must pick off these big pests by hand.

The Love of Vegetable Gardening
Vegetable gardening is very rewarding because it makes you feel better, less stressed, and produces delicious vegetables for you to eat. If you like the fresh vegetables at farmer's market, you'll love to have a garden vegetable of your own to tend to and eat from.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Freezing Fruit

Preserving fruit by deep freezing is easy and very convenient because fruit can be frozen raw and eaten raw all the year round. Raw fruits which are low in acid content need treating before freezing to prevent discoloration on thawing. To help you identify high or low acid type fruits I have prepared and listed below:

photo credit: girllikestoeat.com
Low Acid Fruits
Raw fruits low in natural acid tends to discolor and go brown once cut. To prevent discoloration I recommend adding ascorbic acid, because it is nature's vitamin C and so we add a vitamin to the fruit.
The low acid fruits listed below should be cored, stoned and peeled (where applicable). Place fruits into acid solution, 1½ teaspoons of ascorbic acid powder to 2 pints of ice cold water. Soak for approximately 5 minutes. Drain and use either the raw fruit sugar method or the raw fruit syrup method for freezing.

Apples, apricots, avocados, bananas, cherries (sweet), nectarines, peaches, plums, pears, persimmons and quinces.

High Acid Fruits
Raw fruits high in acid content freeze particularly well, and do not require soaking in ascorbic acid before freezing, as they contain enough of their own acid to prevent discoloration on thawing.
The high acid fruits listed below can be frozen using the dry raw fruit sugar method, the raw fruit sugar method or the raw fruit syrup method. Prepare fruit as for eating ie. Peel, core or stone (where applicable). Wash berries in ice cold water, drain and dry in a clean tea towel before freezing in one of the above mentioned methods. Red and black currants are excellent frozen in the dry raw fruit method ready for making jam or pies all the year round.

Blackberries, boysenberries, cherries (sour), raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb, grapefruits, oranges, gooseberries, guavas, melon, papaya, pineapple, plums, red and black currants, passion fruit and lemon juice.

photo credit: onecharmingparty.com
Dry Raw Fruit Method
Wash fresh ripe fruit in ice cold water, drain and dry carefully. Prepare as for eating. Peel, core, or stone (where applicable). Place meal or pie-size quantities into good quality plastic or polythene bags, pat gently into a flat pack shape. Remove the air with a vacuum pump, seal with a wire twist. Alternatively, use the free flow method of packaging. To thaw, simply thaw in a refrigerator and serve chilled or use without thawing in all types of cooking.

Raw Fruit Sugar Method
Wash fresh ripe fruit in ice cold water, drain and dry carefully. Prepare as for eating. Peel, core or stone (where applicable). Use a good sized bowl and 2-3 oz of castor sugar to 1 lb of fruit. Prepare 1 lb or 2 lb lots of fruit at one time to prevent unnecessary crushing. Place fruit into bowl and sprinkle with sugar, shake bowl gently from side to side to distribute the sugar. Guard against adding to much sugar as excess will not freeze. Should extra sweetening be required it can be added after thawing. I recommend the flat pack method of packaging sugared fruits in meal-sized quantities or use any of the special plastic or wax coated containers with tightly fitting lids to seal, label and freeze. To thaw in refrigerator for 9-10 hours and serve chilled.

Raw Fruit Syrup Method
Prepare sugar syrup, approximately 2 cups water to 1 cup sugar, and leave to cool completely. Dissolve 1¼ teaspoons ascorbic acid powder in every 2 pints of cold syrup. Now wash fresh ripe fruit in ice cold water, drain and dry well. Prepare as for eating. Peel, core or stone (where applicable). Add fruit to syrup, leave to stand for 5 minutes then package in meal size quantities. Plastic or waxed containers with tightly fitting lids are ideal. Remember to leave approximately 1 inch head room for liquid to expand. Seal carefully, label and freeze. To thaw, simply thaw in unopened container in a refrigerator, serve chilled.

Cooked Fruit
Cooked fruit can also be frozen as a means of preserving. Caution on three points:
1. Do not overcook fruit to be frozen. Remember a freezer has a tenderizing effect on all foods. You will find that half the normal cooking time is ample for fruit which is to be frozen.
2. Wait until fruit is completely cold before packaging and freezing.
3. Remember to leave approximately 1 inch head room in container for expansion.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

How Plus Size Retro Dresses Help Plus Sized Women

With the evolution of plus size retro dresses, the fashion industry have instantly proven to the world that they are now more flexible and open to all types of people. Then, fashion industry only caters fashion to perfectly slim people however; as new breed of fashion designers emerged they infused the idea of letting the fashion approach people, not the people approaching to fashion. They also pushed the idea that not all people are created with perfect bodies and still people with very shapely curves could still look glamorous and beautiful just like any other people. Sometimes, it only takes a little attitude to carry one's self and look at its very best.

photo credit: plusnina.com

photo credit: chicgalleria.com
Technically, these plus size retro dresses are the bigger version of retro outfits. And they are made exclusively for people with bigger body sizes. With this, people with such sizes could now dress in accordance to fashion and feel good about themselves. Then, when the world of fashion is still strictly for slim and beautiful women only, plus sized people were left with nothing but to stick with clothes that would just simply cover their extra curves. This line of clothing would help them realize that nothing is wrong with being a plus size, rather people should celebrate their uniqueness in these one of kind piece of clothing that would further enhance those curves.

photo credit: creativefashionglee.com

Other than plus size retro dresses that are made larger, there are also retro clothing styles that could cater plus sized bodies. There are these bohemian retro dresses and shirts that could accommodate those extra mass and make people look great in them. Plus sized people just have to learn to recreate and match pieces of clothing together and definitely, they could come up with something that could make a fashion statement.

photo credit: prettypearbride.com

These plus size retro dresses are actually being sold in every local stores, shops and boutiques. People just have to take some time choosing the right one that could give them justice. These dresses comes in many different styles and designs so all they have to do is choose the coloring and that cut that would make them a little thinner than their actual weight or would help them flaunt their best features. With this, people just have to trust their instincts. Fashion of today is actually more open thus people need not have to fear about being outcast just because of the things they are wearing. Fashion has now respected the style of each person and celebrated its uniqueness that is why it now opened its doors to exclusive designs for plus sized people.

photo credit: wardrobelooks.com

photo credit: curvydivas.com
People are indeed grateful at the advent of retro fashion. Because of this fashion style, plus sized people were given the chance to explore, appreciate themselves and accept their uniqueness. Retro fashion brought these people the confidence they've lost because of those huge curves and make them a part of the human race again. These plus size retro dresses, shirts and so many more may just be a small thing for some people but for those who were deprived from being fashionable for a long time, this is a big thing.

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