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Tips On How To Make Perfect Pie For Your Holiday Seasons

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For many people (us included). Thus, the best part of the holiday season is the plentiful bounty of holiday desserts. Hence, from cookies to cakes to truffles galore, there are sweets to satisfy every kind of sweet tooth.

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While simple slow cooker dump recipes are OK in a pinch, pies are really the quintessential kickoff to holiday dessert season. Whether you like pecan, pumpkin or apple. Thus, if you want to serve up a pie that will make your guests wish they hadn’t had that second heaping helping of stuffing. So, you’re going to need an arsenal of pie-making tips to get you started. Luckily, we’ve got you covered.

Tips For Perfect Pie Crust

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No matter what kind of pie you’re making, your pie crust is the single most important element. For desserts, you’re going for the flakiest, tastiest crust possible — and that’s not always easy to achieve. But there are a few really easy things you can do to achieve optimum flakiage and flavor.

Choose Your Fat Wisely

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Choosing the right kind of fat is key to your pie crust’s flakiness, tenderness and flavor. Shortening is the easiest to work with, but it doesn’t bring much to the pie party in terms of flavor. Instead, opt for a mix of butter and lard in around a 3 to 1 ratio — but feel free to adjust those to your taste. Butter brings the flavor and does help with tenderizing the crust. Processed lard that you buy at the grocery store is all but flavorless and adds even more tenderizing power. It also brings the flake factor you’d normally get with shortening without that weird aftertaste.

Keep It All Cold

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It’s imperative you keep your pie crust cold until it’s ready to go into the oven. You need your fat to remain as solid as possible so the flour coats it without itself being coated in fat. You need the dry flour to absorb the liquid you’ll add to develop the right level of gluten. Plus, those chunks of unmelted fat melt while baking, leading to those flaky layers you’re looking for.

Don’t Develop Too Much Gluten

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The entire reason you knead bread is to develop gluten. Strong gluten structures lead to that soft chewiness that makes bread the toothsome treat it is. But gluten is the enemy of the pie crust. It inhibits flakiness and tenderness and just makes your crust boring and tough. Some gluten-development is good for your pie crust, but anything you can do to limit it is good. It’s very unlikely you’ll underdevelop the gluten for a pie crust.

Take us to Flavortown

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Sorry for the Guy Fieri reference, but this is important. Whatever you do, don’t forget the salt. It’s the single most important ingredient in terms of flavor.

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But don’t stop there. Consider adding other liquids to your water, such as apple cider vinegar (spoiler alert: apple cider vinegar benefits your crust in other ways too).

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16+ Ugly Christmas Sweaters Ideas To Brighten Up Your Christmas

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With the holidays just around the corner. Thus, it’s time to start thinking about the perfect ugly Christmas sweater. To be fair, not all ugly Christmas sweaters are that bad.

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Some sweaters serve a purpose. So, whether it be to hold your wine bottle or to transform you into a Christmas tree. Some even have interactive games and lights. You can also go for a sweater more on the simple side that just has a fun saying or pattern. Or, if you’re feeling really crafty, you can go for a homemade ugly Christmas sweater.

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We’ve gathered some of our favorite ugly sweater ideas right here. Hence, to help you stand out at your next Christmas party. Whether you’re looking for a men’s ugly Christmas sweater, a women’s ugly Christmas sweater. Also, even something for the kids, there’s an option here for each family member. Making your ugly sweater party debut as newlyweds?

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We’ve also included a cute option for couples too. Not only will these funny DIY sweaters make your bash one for the books. But, they’ll also make great DIY Christmas presents and gag gifts. Another benefit of these sweaters? They won’t break your budget. So, there’s one in here that costs the blogger one dollar to make!.

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So whether you’re looking to buy it online. Or are getting your arts and crafts kit ready for a DIY session. Hence, there is definitely the perfect ugly Christmas sweater on this list for you.

You can only have a holly jolly holiday. Thus, if you’re dressed like Clark Griswold from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation on Christmas Eve. It’s time to break out the ugliest, most horrendously cheery Christmas apparel around. Also, we’ve found the best sweaters to help you ring in the season with all the bells and whistles (literally).

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Great Christmas Tradition For You And Your Family To Do

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There’s nothing we don’t love about Christmas! The food, the tree, the songs, the films. Hence, there are so many great traditions that we all take part in. But our favorite ones are the ones that just our family does.

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Whether it’s pajamas under the tree on Christmas Eve or a homemade tour bus to go and see the lights. Thus, we’ve tracked down some adorable new family Christmas traditions for you and the kids. Hence, to make memories with this year, and every year after that.

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With these adorable and unique Christmas traditions, a little homemade snow and a sprinkle of creativity. Thus, it’ll be your merriest, most magical Christmas yet!

Read The Christmas Story

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Amidst all of the lights and presents and sweet treats. Hence, it’s nice to be reminded that this season we are celebrating. Therefore, about love and hope at the core.

Start A Christmas Countdown Paper Chain

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Children are visual! Every day the kids ask how many days until Christmas. But it’s so much more exciting for them to get to remove a piece of the paper chain. Thus, each day and see how the day is nearing!

Go To A Christmas Concert

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Most cities have special concerts during the holiday season, and many of them are free! Bring your family to hear the beautiful songs of the Christmas season.

Go See The Nutcracker

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Last year a friend of ours was dancing in The Nutcracker. So, I reluctantly decided to buy tickets for Parker and me. I never dreamed she would love it so much! After Christmas, she said it was her favorite thing we did all December long! We are going again this year and bought this book to prepare! It’s by far my favorite book version!

Bake Treats For The Neighbors

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Parker loves to bake this time of year, but there’s only so many cookies I want lying around the house. Sweet treats are a nice excuse to pop over next door with baked goods in hand. And catch up with the neighbors!

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Great 4 Tips On Surviving Middle Seat While On Airplane

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What’s worse. Thus, sitting in the middle seat on an airplane. Or having a hole drilled in your head?. Hence, more than half of respondents to a 3M/Global Strategy Group survey a few years back. Thus, indicated would rather go to the dentist than tell a seatmate. Hence, “Excuse me; I need to go to the bathroom.”

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The survey also determined the top five airplane middle seat annoyances as follows. Hence, the survey allowed multiple answers. So, the stats below reflect the percentage of people who chose each option:

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  • Crawling over someone to get to the bathroom (83 percent)
  • Not having a place to rest your head (71 percent)
  • Having a nosy seatmate peering over your shoulder (84 percent)
  • Having an overweight seatmate on either side of you (80 percent)
  • Not being able to stretch out (83 percent)

As airlines try to maximize the number of people on each plane. Hence, continue in the old practice of overbooking. Also, reduce (or charge for) opportunities to make changes to our airline reservations. Thus, frequent travelers are almost doom to a middle seat experience at some point.

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On a typical commercial flight within the United States. Thus, about 50 unfortunate souls is going to suffer the middle seat. So, what can you do if one of those tortured passengers is you? Here’s how to survive the middle seat on a long flight.

Claim Your Territory

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Travelers get confused about proper armrest etiquette on full planes. But, my rule of thumb has worked well for me over many years and countless flights: The person in the middle seat. Hence, has priority when it comes to positioning on the armrests on both sides. If that person prefers to stake out the space closest to the seatback. Thus, he or she gets it, and other folks in more comfortable seats get the slightly less comfortable part of the armrest.

traveller

I’ve only sat next to a few folks who seemed to think they were entitled to all the space around them irrespective of seat assignments, and they had no respect for personal space of any stripe or type—I think a couple of them would have put on my headphones or eaten my food if I had allowed it.

Surrender

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If you end up in a middle seat for a flight of any duration, it will help if you accept early on that it ain’t gonna be fun, easy, or comfortable, so you might as well make the best of it. Sooner or later you will find yourself on the ground, with no one banging your elbows or slamming your knees. In other words, as the adage says, this too shall pass.

Go Before You Go

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If you do need to get up from your seat during the flight. Hence, do so before the person in the aisle seat starts watching the movie, pulls out a book, opens her laptop, falls asleep, etc. Thus, you might also want to get up and out of your seat. Hence, before the person in the window seat falls asleep, too. Therefore, giving him the opportunity to get up at the same time you do. Otherwise, not only might you get trapped inside a sleeping person in the aisle seat. But, when you finally settle in yourself, you may also be forced to get up by the person in the window seat.

Use Sleep and Comfort Aids

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By this, I mean neck pillows, eye masks, earplugs, and other products that make it possible to sleep or restfully while sitting straight up with nothing to lean on.

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Also, take advantage of your surroundings. Aside from occasionally holding a drink or a meal, the tray table doesn’t have much to do during a typical flight. Make use of it by taking an in-flight nap. No need to invest in an embarrassing Ostrich Pillow, however. Roll your jacket into a makeshift pillow, fold forward at the waistline, and snooze away. Whatever you do, though, don’t place your face directly on that petri dish of bacteria (a.k.a. the tray table), or at least disinfect it first.

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