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Red White and Blue Cupcakes Recipes for the 4th of July

Red White and Blue Cupcakes Recipes for the 4th of July

Red White and Blue Cupcakes Recipes for Memorial Day
Happy Independence Day… early!  These cupcakes were going to be my Fourth of July treat, but all my nieces and nephews are coming today and I wanted them to get to enjoy them too.   So I’m a week early.  I’m pretty sure I won’t hear any complaints.

My kids were so excited over these, I barely got to frost them before their hands were reaching to snatch them away from me.  They loved biting into them and seeing all that color.  And who wouldn’t?  These are a perfect dessert to have at a Fourth of July picnic or party, don’t you think?  Make enough for the grown-ups too.  They’re hard to resist.

To help speed things along, I used a boxed cake mix.  The white cake is a good palette for the colors.  I divided the mix into thirds, and added red and blue to two bowls.  I just layered each color into each cupcake liner and voila.  I found the cute cupcake liners in the dollar section at Target, so I was lovin’ that.  Super frugal dessert with a huge presentation.  (The sprinkles were from a pack of Christmas sprinkles – I just took out the green trees that were included.)

Red, White, and Blue Cupcakes Recipe

  • 1 box of white cake mix  (I used Pillsbury)
  • Wilton red (no taste) gel
  • Wilton royal blue gel
  • buttercream icing
  • sprinkles
Red, White, and Blue Cupcakes Recipe
Follow the directions on the box to mix the cake batter.  Divide equally into three bowls.  Leave one bowl white, and add gel colorings to the other bowls to get red and blue.  Layer the batters into your cupcake liners by the spoonful.  You can be neat with flat layers or just goop it in for a more swirly effect.  Follow the box’s instructions for cupcake baking time.  (My box said I should get 24 cupcakes, but I only got 18.)

Vanilla Buttercream Icing Recipe


  • 1/2 c. unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 1/2 c. confectioners sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 5-6 Tbsp. milk

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter until light and fluffy.  Beat in confectioners sugar and vanilla.  Add enough milk to achieve desired consistency.  Yields about 3 cups
4th of July & Memorial Day Decorations You Can Make with Your Family

4th of July & Memorial Day Decorations You Can Make with Your Family

As much as you’d love to throw that Memorial Day cookout we see in glossy magazines and sales commercials, it’s tough to find the time to prepare those backyard decorations and table settings. Instead, many of us spend these days pushing through work or chores so that we can spend some meaningful time focusing on family and friends over our long holiday weekend. But if you skip the decorations now, you’ll meet the same dilemma once again come July 4th.

Good news: we've got the perfect compromise. With these seven quick and easy decoration ideas, you can leave the decorating until the very last hour, and have everything you need to ensure that you and your guests get the most out of your holiday. And the best part? All of your decorations will be ready to go for July 4th, too!























New York Style Cheese Pizza Recipe

New York Style Cheese Pizza Recipe

This New York Style Cheese Pizza Recipe features a chewy crust, sweet and tangy sauce, and plenty of gooey cheese! This pizza is almost identical to the famous slices sold on the streets of New York. And so much better than delivery!

The Best New York Style Cheese Pizza

Prep 20 mins | Cook 45 mins | Total 2 hours, 50 mins
Yield 1 Pizza

Ingredients


For the Crust:

  • 3 and 3/4 cups bread flour
  • 1 and 1/4 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups water, 110 - 115 degrees (F)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons

For the Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

For the Cheese:

  • 8 ounces low-moisture mozzarella cheese, shredded then frozen

Instructions


For the Crust:

  1. Combine the bread flour, sugar, yeast and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer; stir to combine.
  2. Fit mixer with dough hook.
  3. Turn mixer on low speed and add the water and 2 tablespoons of the oil; beat until the dough forms into a ball around the hook. If the dough is super sticky, add additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a solid ball. If the dough is too dry, add additional water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  4. Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead into a smooth, firm ball.
  5. Grease a large bowl with the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil, add the dough, cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Place the bowl in a warm area and let it double in size, about 90 minutes.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Wrap one dough well in saran wrap and place in the freezer for a later use.
  7. Place the dough you'll be using on a piece of plastic wrap and let it rest for 10 minutes.

For the Sauce:

  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-flame. Add the onion, celery and garlic and saute until soft; about 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce and tomato paste and stir until smooth.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and bring to slow simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes. Remove from heat and allow sauce to cool.
  3. Spread the sauce on pizza dough, as needed.

For the Cheese:

  1. Grate cheese, then place it in a large, clean bowl. Place bowl in the freezer for at least 20 minutes.
  2. Assembly
  3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees (F).
  4. Roll dough out to a large circle (about 12 inches). Pour a 1/4 cup of sauce in the center and spread it around evenly. Add cheese.
  5. Place pizza in the oven to bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the crust is set and the cheese is bubbling. Cut into slices and serve at once!
White Pizza Recipe

White Pizza Recipe

Think cheese pizza is boring? Try changing it up with the more sophisticated White Pizza recipe. An herb and garlic infused olive oil is spread on a pizza crust that is topped with three cheeses for a delicious, cheesy pizza.

We have been a pizza making family for many, many years now. One of my daughter’s first favorite foods was pizza. And today, pizza is my youngest’s favorite thing that I make.

But when it comes to pizza night, the kids always choose the same. Cheese for one, pepperoni for the other. Not that I think there is anything wrong with cheese pizza. Or with pepperoni pizza. But sometimes you need something a little extra. Like garlic and rosemary brushed over your crust. And then topped with 3 different cheeses. And a little red pepper flake for a hint of heat.


Ingredients

  • 1 lb pizza dough
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Crushed red pepper

Instructions

  1. Place a pizza stone in the oven. Preheat the oven to 450º-500ºF for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Lightly flour a piece of parchment paper and flatten the pizza dough into a large circle, about 14” in diameter.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, rosemary and olive oil. Brush the olive oil mixture over the crust.
  4. Dollop the ricotta evenly over the crust and gently spread it out. Sprinkle on the mozzarella and the parmesan cheeses. Sprinkle crushed red pepper over the top – you only need a little bit – less than half a teaspoon, depending on how much heat you want.
  5. Bake the pizza in the preheated oven until the edges are browned and the cheese is melted, about 10-12 minutes.
  6. Cut into slices and serve.
Homemade Sheet Pan Pizza Recipe

Homemade Sheet Pan Pizza Recipe

I can’t even tell you how many amazing memories of my childhood were brought back while making this super delicious Homemade Sheet Pan Pizza Recipe!

Regardless of what type of toppings you like, for sure this pizza dough should have you well on your way to making an amazing sheet pan pizza. Happy baking you guys!

SERVINGS : 1 large sheet pan pizza


INGREDIENTS


For the Dough:

  • 4 ½ cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
  • 1 packet of active yeast
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 2/3 warm water (110° to 115°)

For the Toppings:

  • 4 cloves of pressed garlic cloves
  • 15 ounces of canned crushed tomatoes
  • 8 ounces of shredded mozzarella
  • 8 ounce ball of sliced mozzarella
  • Pepperoni slices
  • Loose Italian sausage
  • Sliced domestic mushrooms
  • Sliced green peppers
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Shredded parmesan cheese
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 500°.
  2. Dough: Mix together the flour, salt, yeast, sugar, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and water until combined and knead for 2 to 3 minutes. Cover with a towel and rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large sheet pan and mold the dough until it fits and covers the sheet pan.
  4. Leaving ½ inch of dough around the outside for the crust evenly spread on the garlic, tomatoes, mozzarella cheeses, pepperoni, Italian sausage, mushrooms, peppers and basil. Season with salt and pepper and bake for 12 minutes or until the crusts is golden brown and the cheese is melted.
  5. Finish by adding on some shredded parmesan cheese.
Patriotic Quotes to Honor the USA on Memorial Day

Patriotic Quotes to Honor the USA on Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend typically kicks off the start of summer, and it's filled with lots of time spent outdoors and even special Memorial Day activities like cookouts featuring the best Memorial Day recipes. But while you're enjoying a summer barbecue or even visiting a lake on your day off, it's important to pay tribute to those who earned our freedom. These patriotic quotes will help get you in the mood and keep in mind the real meaning and history of Memorial Day: to honor all the men and women who have died while serving our country.

Trying to get yourself in the right mindset for the day? Add some patriotic country songs to your playlist and check out these super patriotic quotes.

Barack Obama
"In the face of impossible odds, people who love this country can change it."


John F. Kennedy
"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty."

Ronald Reagan
"All great change in America begins at the dinner table."

Theodore Roosevelt
"I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit."

Gen. Douglas MacArthur
"Duty, honor, country. Those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be."

Bob Dylan
"I think of a hero as someone who understands the degree of responsibility that comes with his freedom."

Gen. George S. Patton
"It's better to fight for something in life than to die for nothing."

Frederick Douglass
"The life of the nation is secure only while the nation is honest, truthful, and virtuous."

Benjamin Disraeli
"The legacy of heroes—the memory of a great name, and the inheritance of a great example."

Franklin D. Roosevelt
"In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved."

James Bryce
"Patriotism consists not in waving the flag, but in striving that our country shall be righteous as well as strong."

Henry James
"I think patriotism is like charity—it begins at home."

Peter Marshall
"May we think of freedom, not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right."

Robert Frost
“Freedom lies in being bold.”

Claudia Pemberton
"America without her soldiers would be like God without his angels."

Benjamin Franklin​
"Where liberty dwells, there is my country."

Harry S. Truman​
"America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination, and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand."

Oliver Wendell Holmes
“One flag, one land, one heart, one hand, one nation evermore!”

William Faulkner​
"We must be free not because we claim freedom, but because we practice it."






10 Memorial Day Activities to Plan for Your Family

10 Memorial Day Activities to Plan for Your Family

For many American families, a Memorial Day celebration includes a three-day weekend packed with picnics, a trip to the lake, backyard grilling sessions featuring Memorial Day barbecue recipes, and a red, white, and blue Memorial Day dessert to top it all off. This year's activities might be smaller in scale, but it's still important to keep in mind the history of Memorial Day.

This national holiday isn’t about sales at your favorite stores or online or an extra day off from work. It’s about remembering and honoring those who have made the greatest sacrifice for our country’s freedom and lost their lives serving in the U.S. military.

So when is Memorial Day this year? Memorial Day always falls on the last Monday in May. This year, on Monday, May 25, 2020, share your love and respect for those who have served. Or put pen to paper and write cards of appreciation to relatives and neighbors that include one of these Memorial Day quotes to make you proud to be an American. Let the kids help with this craft too! Here are some Memorial Day activities for your family that celebrate the true meaning of this national holiday.

Decorate Your House
Twirl up your house with patriotic decor and other red, white, and blue decorations that are cute and inexpensive to show your appreciation for the women and men who have served our country.

Create a Sidewalk Mural
Kids of all ages (even preschoolers) can get in on the fun of creating a giant sidewalk chalk mural of a flag. Passersby will adore this creative approach to celebrating Memorial Day.

Camp Out In Your Backyard
These backyard camping ideas will make you feel like you're in the great outdoors, including pitching a tent and making popcorn over a fire.

Plan a Backyard Barbecue
A backyard grilling session featuring these Memorial Day recipes for your weekend barbecue is an ideal—and all-American—way to usher in summer.

Set Up a Drinks and Snacks Station
If your Memorial Day includes a laid-back day playing in the yard, set up a drinks and snacks station so everyone can serve themselves. Save the fabric pinwheels and garland made of paper drinking straws for the 4th of July!

Take a Drive
Even if you're just exploring your neck of the woods, it's always nice to enjoy a wide open road with your loved ones in tow.

Listen to Patriotic Music
Crank up the volume and queue up our list of Memorial Day songs. The collection of tracks will have you bursting with American pride.

Post a Special Message on Instagram
Share your love and respect on social media with the best Memorial Day captions for your Instagram posts.

Send a Care Package
Honor the heroes of the past by sending a care package to an active duty service member.

Donate to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Whether you donate time or money, your contribution to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will be greatly appreciated.
Father's Day Gift Ideas Every Dad Will Love

Father's Day Gift Ideas Every Dad Will Love

Dad says he is easy-going and wants for nothing, but you know when it comes to his Father's Day present, it's got to be good. To help you with your Father's Day gift shopping this year, we compiled a list of one-of-a-kind and useful gifts that fit any budget. We made sure to include affordable gifts on Amazon to personalized presents you can't find anywhere else.

No matter if you're shopping for your grandpa, husband, or other special dad in your life, we hope you find something on this list that suits his personality the most. Our favorite Father's Day gift ideas includes grooming products, cheap yet thoughtful momentums, and some hilarious gifts that will make him LOL for days.

Cooling Pint Glasses

Cooling Pint Glasses
Cooling Pint Glasses

With this beer gift, all Dad has to do is pop these cooling glasses in the freezer for about two hours — from there, he can enjoy a cold one whenever he'd like!

Best Farter Ever Oops Meant Father Mug

Best Farter Ever Oops Meant Father Mug
Best Farter Ever Oops Meant Father Mug

The mug says it all. It makes a great last-minute gift, plus reviewers say that the seller ships the mug in protective packaging, and the writing doesn't fade away even after several washes in the dishwasher. 

Electric Indoor Grill and Panini Press

Electric Indoor Grill and Panini Press
Electric Indoor Grill and Panini Press

Think about it, sometimes the best memories with dad are the ones when you're sharing a meal or preparing food together. This portable grill barely takes up counter space, yet it's capable of grilling meats for the whole family to enjoy.

Vacuum Insulated Rambler

Vacuum Insulated Rambler
Vacuum Insulated Rambler

When he's camping or on carpool duty, this super durable travel mug will keep his morning beverage of choice super hot (or nice 'n' cold).

Versa Smart Watch

Versa Smart Watch
Versa Smart Watch

Fitbit's classic watch will motivate him to accomplish his fitness goals big and small. It even reminds him to get up from his desk every few hours, and go to bed on time. One of our writers deemed the Fitbit better than the Apple watch.

The Official Beard Bib Hair Clippings Catcher

Beard Bib Hair Clippings Catcher
Beard Bib Hair Clippings Catcher

There are few things worse than seeing clumps of freshly shaven hair scattered in the bathroom sink. This beard hair catcher can be worn like an apron so there's no mess, clogged drains, and best of all, no cleaning.

Carry-on Cocktail Kit

Carry-on Cocktail Kit
Carry-on Cocktail Kit

With ingredients for Bloody Mary's, Moscow Mules, and Hot Toddies, he just has to add nips for an in-flight cocktail.

SoundSport Wireless Headphones

SoundSport Wireless Headphones
SoundSport Wireless Headphones

Rev up his workout with these ear buds from Bose. The pair is made with Stay Hear+ tips that keep 'em snug, and they last six hours on a single charge, and were picked as the top performer for best in-ear headphones in our lab tests.

Compression Leggings

Compression Leggings
Compression Leggings

These longer pants will keep his legs protected during summer hikes and can be worn under his shorts for added warmth on winter runs.

Official Daddy Shark T-Shirt

Daddy Shark T-Shirt
Daddy Shark T-Shirt

This tee is going to be a game changer the next time his toddler makes a request to listen to the "Baby Shark" song.

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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