Smart Kitchen Updates

Wether you’re the type that turns out elaborate, multi-pot creations, or if you primarily use your kitchen for middle-of-the-night fridge raids, the kitchen is truly the hub of the house. After all, it’s where you prepare your sustenance and create delicious memories for your family. A spot this significant deserves an upgrade or two!

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In this episode of Smart, Simple, Solved, I’ve pinpointed some kitchen gadgets that can make food shopping and cooking more fun – and clean up a breeze.

I’ll show you a fridge magnet that will change grocery list-making forever – and if you have kids, it can finally put an end to you being out of milk and not knowing it. Oh, and you can talk to it, too. There’s also a bright way to light your food beautifully (buh-bye, flickering fluorescents). And there are two tools that make sweeping so much easier on your back that spilling a little flour won’t involve a trip to the chiropractor.

With a kitchen this optimized, even non-cooks might feel inspired to break out a pan, which could add up to less take-out and less pounds on you and your family.

Now that’s some high-tech kitchen magic.

6 Tips for Packing the Perfect Cooler

If you are planning to head to the beaches of Orange County, or one of the park or stadiums near Los Angeles, chances are it will involve a cooler packed with ice cold beverages and delicious food. After spending many summer holidays camping, tailgating and boating, I’ve learned how bad cooler etiquette can crash a party. From soggy sandwiches to waterlogged potato salad, I’ve seen and done it all. Here are a few tips I’ve picked up for conquering cooler chaos.

how to pack a cooler

GET THE RIGHT COOLER.

It doesn’t have to be fancy, but make sure your cooler has either a handle that secures the lid, a latch or a zipper. The last thing you want is your cooler tipping and everything spilling out. That could be a party foul. This 28-quart cooler packs enough food and beverages for four people. Plus, it doubles as an extra seat.

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 START WITH YOUR BEVERAGES.

Whatever you decide to sip on for the day, add it first. Beverages at the bottom of your cooler will stay colder for longer, and won’t smash your food items. Try to refrigerate or buy beverages that are already cold.

ADD ICE.

You’ll want to ice down your beverages before stacking food on top. I bought one bag of ice for this cooler and it was plenty. If you’re working with warm drinks, add a little water and a dash of rock salt to chill beverages quickly.

TOP IT OFF AND ENJOY YOUR DAY.

Pack your cooler with the remaining ice, but allow enough room for breads, chips and any items that squash easily. You don’t have to add these items, but I like to have everything in one place.

Here is another great use for Ice Coolers… Make a solar powered air conditioner.