Valentine’s Day Cheap in Fort Collins

 Beats, Scene & Heard, The Well  Comments Off on Valentine’s Day Cheap in Fort Collins
Feb 042013
 

Author: Nicole Beale

We have all heard the ‘starving college student’ stereotype a time or two, but it’s only funny because it is true for most of us. For those who have somebody special this year, but a not a special sum of money to spend, no need to fear. There are options that won’t break the bank.

Any good date begins with a good meal. Remember, this is Valentine’s Day and nothing is more romantic than a good cook. Start out the perfect date with your sweetie by cooking them something delectable. As long as you put you heart into it and make it with love, they will enjoy it.

If the first thing that came to your mind is PB&J, consider looking up some recipes. Anyone can spruce up a dining area by setting a table and adding a few candles or flower petals. It is the details that count. Dessert has always been very closely related to Valentine’s Day. Come up with a clever dessert, such as ice cream topped with crushed candy hearts.

After you have progressed through the meal, you’re ready for some romantic fun. There are cheap options to take care of the situation. Ice skating is open at Fort Fun and costs only $10 for two people. Another option is the discount movie theater, AMC Cinema Saver 6. They feature movies that have been in theaters for some time and sell tickets for $3 each. This is such a score, as it’s less than half the cost of a ticket anywhere else in town. Beware that drinks are more expensive than the tickets.  Also being featured special for Valentine’s day is Jimkata, an electro-rock band, blending heavy beats, syn-thy hooks, and big guitars to create music with both modern and timeless appeal. Just for Valentine’s Day they will be playing at the Aggie for free. Nothing is better than a free date on Valentine’s Day when you have a tight budget. Hold your sweetheart close as you groove courtesy of Jimkata.

What you choose is up to you and your Valentine. There are ways to woo your loved one and not go bankrupt at the same time. Any one of these options is guaranteed to be a good time and not break the bank. How the rest of the date goes is up to you.

Valentine’s Day Cheap in Fort Collins

 Beats, Scene & Heard, The Well  Comments Off on Valentine’s Day Cheap in Fort Collins
Feb 042013
 

Author: Nicole Beale

We have all heard the ‘starving college student’ stereotype a time or two, but it’s only funny because it is true for most of us. For those who have somebody special this year, but a not a special sum of money to spend, no need to fear. There are options that won’t break the bank.

Any good date begins with a good meal. Remember, this is Valentine’s Day and nothing is more romantic than a good cook. Start out the perfect date with your sweetie by cooking them something delectable. As long as you put you heart into it and make it with love, they will enjoy it.

If the first thing that came to your mind is PB&J, consider looking up some recipes. Anyone can spruce up a dining area by setting a table and adding a few candles or flower petals. It is the details that count. Dessert has always been very closely related to Valentine’s Day. Come up with a clever dessert, such as ice cream topped with crushed candy hearts.

After you have progressed through the meal, you’re ready for some romantic fun. There are cheap options to take care of the situation. Ice skating is open at Fort Fun and costs only $10 for two people. Another option is the discount movie theater, AMC Cinema Saver 6. They feature movies that have been in theaters for some time and sell tickets for $3 each. This is such a score, as it’s less than half the cost of a ticket anywhere else in town. Beware that drinks are more expensive than the tickets.  Also being featured special for Valentine’s day is Jimkata, an electro-rock band, blending heavy beats, syn-thy hooks, and big guitars to create music with both modern and timeless appeal. Just for Valentine’s Day they will be playing at the Aggie for free. Nothing is better than a free date on Valentine’s Day when you have a tight budget. Hold your sweetheart close as you groove courtesy of Jimkata.

What you choose is up to you and your Valentine. There are ways to woo your loved one and not go bankrupt at the same time. Any one of these options is guaranteed to be a good time and not break the bank. How the rest of the date goes is up to you.

Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies

 The Munchies, The Well  Comments Off on Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies
Feb 022013
 

Author: Nicolle Fagan

Candy Heart cookies. Photo by Nicolle Fagan.

Candy Heart cookies. Photo by Nicolle Fagan.

It’s that time of year again when grocery stores are overrun by overpriced chocolates, cheesy teddy bears, and aisles of flowers. For the average college student,

the sugary treats can be detrimental to the monthly grocery budget. So when you are browsing the aisles for an affordable delicacy, you are confronted with…

Candy hearts.

These heart-shaped candies have been given out at Valentine’s Day since you were in elementary school. Every year these “delightful” treats find their way into your life. And why? Because they are cheap and can be re-gifted (they take years to expire).

Some people love these tiny goodies and their generic Valentine’s Day sayings. Others can’t stand the chalky taste. But everyone can appreciate their affordability and versatility.

Whether you have a box leftover from a Valentine gone wrong or you have a stash of Conversation Hearts to keep you happy the rest of the year, there is an easy recipe you can incorporate these classic treats into: Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup of vegetable oil
  • Two large eggs
  • Approximately 1/3 cup of candy hearts
  • Box of vanilla cake mix

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. While the oven heats up, work on breaking up the candy hearts. Dump 1/3 of a cup of hearts into a plastic sandwich bag and use whatever tool necessary (like a textbook that the Bookstore wouldn’t buy back) to break the candies into small pieces.
  2. Empty the vanilla cake mix into a large bowl. Add two eggs, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, and the crushed candies. Mix well.
  3. The mixture is going to seem dry, but it should be. The cake mix is being transformed into cookie dough, so mix until all of the dry mix is part of the dough.
  4. Once mixed, spoon one-inch balls of the mix onto a baking sheet. Place the cookies two inches apart from one another on the sheet.
  5. Put the baking sheet(s) into the oven for 15 to 18 minutes. The cookies are done when you can see golden browning on the sides and tops of the cookies.
  6. Remove the sheets from the oven and let the cookies cool for five minutes before consumption.

And that’s it! The cookies are deliciously simple and cost only about three dollars to make. Take pride that you will finally use those candy hearts in your cupboard and gain a little appreciation for these iconic Valentine candies.

 

Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies

 The Munchies, The Well  Comments Off on Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies
Feb 022013
 

Author: Nicolle Fagan

Candy Heart cookies. Photo by Nicolle Fagan.

Candy Heart cookies. Photo by Nicolle Fagan.

It’s that time of year again when grocery stores are overrun by overpriced chocolates, cheesy teddy bears, and aisles of flowers. For the average college student,

the sugary treats can be detrimental to the monthly grocery budget. So when you are browsing the aisles for an affordable delicacy, you are confronted with…

Candy hearts.

These heart-shaped candies have been given out at Valentine’s Day since you were in elementary school. Every year these “delightful” treats find their way into your life. And why? Because they are cheap and can be re-gifted (they take years to expire).

Some people love these tiny goodies and their generic Valentine’s Day sayings. Others can’t stand the chalky taste. But everyone can appreciate their affordability and versatility.

Whether you have a box leftover from a Valentine gone wrong or you have a stash of Conversation Hearts to keep you happy the rest of the year, there is an easy recipe you can incorporate these classic treats into: Crazy 4 Candy Heart Cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup of vegetable oil
  • Two large eggs
  • Approximately 1/3 cup of candy hearts
  • Box of vanilla cake mix

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. While the oven heats up, work on breaking up the candy hearts. Dump 1/3 of a cup of hearts into a plastic sandwich bag and use whatever tool necessary (like a textbook that the Bookstore wouldn’t buy back) to break the candies into small pieces.
  2. Empty the vanilla cake mix into a large bowl. Add two eggs, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, and the crushed candies. Mix well.
  3. The mixture is going to seem dry, but it should be. The cake mix is being transformed into cookie dough, so mix until all of the dry mix is part of the dough.
  4. Once mixed, spoon one-inch balls of the mix onto a baking sheet. Place the cookies two inches apart from one another on the sheet.
  5. Put the baking sheet(s) into the oven for 15 to 18 minutes. The cookies are done when you can see golden browning on the sides and tops of the cookies.
  6. Remove the sheets from the oven and let the cookies cool for five minutes before consumption.

And that’s it! The cookies are deliciously simple and cost only about three dollars to make. Take pride that you will finally use those candy hearts in your cupboard and gain a little appreciation for these iconic Valentine candies.

 

Souled Out: Can there be religion in snow?

 Blogs, Souled Out, The Well  Comments Off on Souled Out: Can there be religion in snow?
Dec 072012
 

Author: Cassandra Whelihan

 

 

The snow falls, blanketing everything in its path in a white clothe. Suddenly, even the oldest buildings or the dirtiest streets take on an enchanting quality about them.

What is it about snow that gives the places it touches a new air about them? What would the reflection of God be in the snow?

To look at it in the eyes of a higher power, I might first note the truth that each snowflake is unique; individual to itself and never to be replicated.

Secondly, when the snow begins to fall, it is as if all falls silent. An atmosphere of hush falls around us: tranquil and serene. The stillness is a factor that invites us to recollect all the higher things in life.

The purity symbolized by the white snow is also intriguing. Without the filth in the panorama, the transparency becomes eye-opening to wonders so easily disregarded on a daily basis.

Not only does the snow symbolize purity but also innocent beauty. Coating branches, parks, houses and lakes in its shimmering hope.

According to Christine Fitzgerald, when one remembers that God, Allah or whichever deity you believe in, is the author of all creation, and has filled our world with beautiful secrets then everything becomes an exciting quest.

We know with certainty that if we open our eyes to view creation with an open mind and allow it to open our hearts, what we find will be awe-inspiring. Simply the wonders of nature are enough to strike up thought within one’s mind.

ADDITIONAL LINK FOR FURTHER READING:

Native American stories about snow: A website with stories regarding snow and the importance of nature.

A Quarter Past Beer: College Avenue’s Guide to Holiday Cocktails

 Features, The Well  Comments Off on A Quarter Past Beer: College Avenue’s Guide to Holiday Cocktails
Dec 022012
 

Author: Makenna Dubler

"Chocolate" originates from Mexico's...

“Chocolate” originates from Mexico’s Aztec cuisine, derived from the Nahuatl word xocolatl. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you like:

Hot Chocolate

Try:

Mexicocoa

Ingredients:

4 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa (not hot chocolate mix)

1 tbsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. chili powder

2 tsp. cayenne pepper

3 cups milk (almond milk preferred, can also substitute Irish Crème),

1/4 cup agave nectar, honey, or maple syrup

4 oz. silver tequila

Paprika

4 Cinnamon sticks for garnish

How to make it:

Toast cocoa powder, cinnamon, chili powder and cayenne pepper in a saucepan over low heat until spices release aromas (about two to three minutes). Slowly stir in milk with a whisk or wooden spoon.  Raise temperature to medium-high and bring to a simmer.  Stir in agave nectar and remove from heat.  Dip the rims of four mugs into a saucer of hot water, blot, and dip into a saucer of paprika. Pour in one oz tequila to each mug.  Add one-fourth of the hot cocoa mixture to each mug.  Stir with a cinnamon stick and serve.

Serves 4

 

 

Poinsettia

Poinsettia (Photo credit: flagondry)

If you like:

Punch

Try:

Poinsettia Cocktail

Ingredients:

4 cups (1 quart) vodka

4 cups (1 quart) champagne

8 cups (2 quarts) cranberry juice

Crushed ice

1 orange peel sliced into 1/4 inch wide strips, about 2 inches long

How to make it:

Combine the vodka, champagne and juice in a large punch bowl. Add crushed ice and stir until well chilled. Twist orange strips over bowl and drop into punch. Pour into glasses and serve.

Makes one big bowl of punch (16 cups or 4 quarts)

 

roasting a marshmallow

roasting a marshmallow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you like:

Fire

Try:

S’more Shooters

Ingredients:

12 large marshmallows (or 35 mini marshmallows)

1 cup half & half

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1 1/2 cups whole milk

3/4 cup amaretto

1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs (to rim shot glasses)

About 12 tbsp. Bacardi 151 or other flammable liquor

A lighter

How to make it:

In a small saucepan, bring the half & half to a boil. Place the chocolate in a medium bowl. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until melted.  Return the chocolate to the pot and whisk in milk. Over medium heat, bring to a simmer and stir in half a cup of amaretto. Pour the remaining amaretto into a small bowl. Place graham cracker crumbs on a small plate. Dip the rims of shot glasses into the amaretto, then the crumbs. Transfer the hot chocolate to a measuring cup with a spout and fill the shot glasses.  Top each with one large marshmallow (or 3 mini marshmallows) and pour a tablespoon of liquor over each glass. Ignite with a lighter to toast the marshmallow. Blow out before drinking, and serve.

Makes 12 shooters

 

Samuel Adams Chocolate Bock

Samuel Adams Chocolate Bock (Photo credit: Bernt Rostad)

If you like:

A festive beerTry:

Samuel Adams® Winter Classics Variety Pack

Includes:

White Christmas

Chocolate Bock

Boston Lager®

Winter Lager

Old Fezziwig® Ale

Holiday Porter

What it’s like:

Ranging from light to dark, this pack of six different seasonal beers is sure to spark up your holiday spirit. Like unfiltered light beers with citrus and cinnamon flavors? Try White Christmas.  Or if you prefer a rich, dark beer, try the Chocolate Bock. The Boston Lager® is a classic, with a nice balance of sweet with spicy, and the Winter Lager and Old Fezziwig® Ale are both bold and full of holiday spice flavors.  For a more hoppy brew, the traditional Holiday Porter is your drink.

Available in 12 or 24-packs

Holiday giving without all the spending

 Goods & Gear, The Well  Comments Off on Holiday giving without all the spending
Nov 202012
 

Author: Kendall Greenwood

The holiday season is here. Snow is on the ground, the lights are hung in Old Town and the careful calculations of your bank account commence. If snow or lights is not your thing, there is not much you can do to avoid them. Pinterest can help ease your bank account though.

Pinterest, a blog-like website with countless creative ideas, is a hub for do-it-yourself projects. Here are five easy and affordable do-it-yourself gift ideas from this site that will give you extra hot chocolate money.

Rein-beer

For this you get a six-pack of beer, or any other drink of your choosing, and decorate each beverage with pipe cleaners, googly eyes and a little nose. In the end, the six-pack will look like a gang of reindeer. According to Wilbur’s, the average six-pack is around ­­$9.99 and the crafty items are all available at Dollar Tree, making this an affordable gift costing you ­$12.99.

Manicure in a Jar

This gift needs a mason jar, which Walmart has available for $6.97; nail polish, $3.97 at Walmart; nail polish remover, $2.96 at Walmart; and a manicure set from the Dollar Tree. Arrange these items in the mason jar in a manner of your choosing and decorate. The nail polish color and your choice of decorations allow you to specialize this to your loved ones’ tastes.  Your complete gift totals to $14.90.

Nutella Cookies

All you need to make these cookies is a cup of Nutella, one whole egg and one cup of flour.  Combine these ingredients and bake at 350 degrees for six to eight minutes. A 26.5 oz. jar of Nutella is available at Walmart for $6.56, making this a very affordable gift idea.

Painted Wine Bottles

For the craftier, there is the painted wine bottle gift. You will need empty wine bottles (or an empty bottle of some kind) and chalkboard paint, available at Michael’s from $1.99 to $5.99. Paint the bottles with the chalkboard paint and wait to dry. Gift with chalk and your loved one will have a new kind of message board.

Hot Chocolate and Bailey’s

This gives a twist to the traditional holiday drink. Pair hot chocolate with a shooter of Bailey’s for $2.99 at Wilbur’s. You can use store bought hot chocolate for anywhere from $1.28 to $7.71 at Walmart or you can look up your own recipe. With hot chocolate from the store, this present could cost as little as $4.27. There are limitless ways to package this.

These are just a few ideas that have been posted on Pinterest for the holidays.  Liana Guerin, a freshman apparel and merchandising major, enjoys Pinterest because of its variety.

“It gives me ideas for my hair and clothes, but also things you normally wouldn’t look up,” Guerin said. “Like recipes and gift ideas. “[I am on Pinterest] about an hour a day.”

Too School for Cool: Unconventional uses for condiments

 The Well, Too School for Cool  Comments Off on Too School for Cool: Unconventional uses for condiments
Nov 092012
 

Author: Allison LeCain

Schedro_ketchup Dansk: Ketchup sælges typisk p...

Heinz Tomato Ketchup (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Look inside your fridge. I bet you have all the basic condiments – ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard.  While these are great for barbecuing, they serve many other purposes.

With just these three condiments, normally made for consumption, you can have a spa day or clean your house.

Ketchup

This condiment, most commonly used on French fries, contains a high amount of sodium, making it great for shinning pots, pans and auto parts.

It can also be used to correct the green highlights that blondes can get in their hair from spending a lot of time in chlorinated water.  Just wash your hair with ketchup instead of shampoo next time you shower.

If you’re out of shaving cream, you can use ketchup as a replacement. Just be sure to throw out the razor once you’re finished.

 

English: 48-ounce (1.42 l) jar of Duke's Mayon...

English: 48-ounce (1.42 l) jar of Duke’s Mayonnaise (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mayonnaise

Mayo is packed with fatty oils, which can be good for your skin and hair or removing sticky stuff.

If you have dry, brittle hair, try moisturizing it will mayo as a cheap alternative to hair products. Comb about a tablespoon of mayo through your scalp and leave it in for one hour. Wash it out with only a little bit of shampoo, as to not strip your hair of the moisture the mayo added.

You can also exfoliate your dry skin with mayonnaise. Put it on wherever necessary and let it sit for 10 minutes. Mayonnaise will also strengthen fingernails, making you hang-nail-free.

Mayo has the power to clean crayon marks off of walls and floors, as well as removing stickers and glue.  It will even clean water rings off wooden tables, so you can say bye-bye to the coasters.

Mustard

Plain yellow mustard has medicinal properties in it that can heal muscles and aches, as well as getting rid of bad smells.

A bottle of French's Classic Yellow Mustard

A bottle of French’s Classic Yellow Mustard (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mustard can be used to deodorize water bottles. Simply mix a little mustard with hot water, swoosh it around in the bottle, and rinse clean. This miracle condiment will also get rid of skunk stench.

Adding mustard into a warm bath can soothe sore muscles. The same affect applies to healing headaches through soaking your feet in warm mustard water for 15 minutes.

If you have a cold, mix a squirt of mustard, lemon juice and honey in a glass of warm water to sooth a sore throat. You can also apply mustard to your chest and place a hot towel over it to ease chest decongestion.

DIY Chai Pumpkin Latte

 Beats, The Munchies, The Well  Comments Off on DIY Chai Pumpkin Latte
Oct 112012
 

Author: Nicole Beale

Baristas at several coffee shops around town do art on top of their drinks. This latte art was done by Jordan Work at The Wild Boar.

Baristas at several coffee shops around town do art on top of their drinks. This latte art was done by Jordan Work at The Wild Boar. Photo by Logan Martinez

As fall comes, it brings things like beautiful autumn colors, football, comfy clothes and, of course, your seasonal pumpkin latte. There’s only one thing better than going down to the coffee shop and warming up with a traditional pumpkin latte, and that’s staying warm inside and making it yourself. Why spend over $4 on a latte when you can create your own delicious treat just as easily? So now take another fan favorite, the chai tea, and combine the similar flavors of chai and pumpkin. This recipe puts a super delicious twist on the seasonal latte.

Chai Pumpkin  Latte

— 1 chai tea bag

— 3/4 cup of strongly brewed coffee

—  1/2 cup of milk of your preference

— 1 teaspoon of Torani Pumpkin Syrup or pumpkin spice seasoning

— 1/2 -1 teaspoon of vanilla (depending on preference)

— 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

— pinch of nutmeg

— sugar to taste

 

Instructions:

1. Brew coffee

2. Add milk and blend together

3. Add tea bag— keep in the coffee for as long as you desire. The longer you leave it in, the stronger the taste will be.

4. Add pumpkin spice, vanilla and cinnamon

5. Add pinch of nutmeg at finish

6. Taste and add sugar if you desire

 

 

The mighty microwave: Cooking without fire

 Beats, Features, The Munchies  Comments Off on The mighty microwave: Cooking without fire
Aug 242012
 

Author: John Sheesley

English: Putting raisins in a microwave oven p...

Putting raisins in a microwave oven produces large quantities of smoke. Don’t do it.

Some would say that life in the dorms is easy. There are hot showers, warm beds, plenty of food, and friends all around. But anyone who has eaten three meals a day in the university dining halls knows that both vitamins and variety are lacking. But eating at restaurants all the time gets  expensive fast, and cooking in the dorms is very hard due to a pesky rule about no open coils or hot plates (something about preventing fires, it seems). So what can those without a stove top do? Turn to the almighty microwave.

Though we often think of it as only for reheating three-day-old cheeseburgers and making popcorn, the microwave was originally invented to act as a very fast, compact oven. It happens to do this very well.

Before we jump right into the exciting microwave recipes there are a few safety tips we have to cover. Like with any oven, be careful not to burn yourself, as food will be hot. Never use grocery bags, newspaper, metal, or foil in the microwave. Oven cooking bags, parchment paper and white microwave paper towels are safe for microwave use, as are glass and ceramics. Don’t microwave food in Tupperware or Styrofoam. Because microwaves vary, times are not precise, so be careful to make sure food is fully cooked.

Now that we have that straight, lets go through a day of microwave meals, made hot and fresh in the comfort of your own room with only the finest ingredients from your local grocery store.

For for a nutritious breakfast in minutes, why not try an egg sandwich. Crack an egg, or two if you’re really hungry, in a ceramic coffee mug and scramble them well with a fork, then microwave on high one minute for each egg or until fully cooked. Place the egg(s) on an English muffin with a slice of cheese and a slice of ham or turkey.

Alternatively,  make an omelet by scrambling a couple of eggs in a mug and adding some cut veggies, meat, and cheese. Microwave for two to three minutes or until done.

When lunchtime rolls around and the energy from your deliciously eggy breakfast begins to wear off, recharge with an ear of corn. Simply wrap the peeled ear of corn in a damp paper towel and microwave for about five minutes. Add a bit of butter and salt and its ready to devour.

If corn isn’t your style try an inside-out pizza. Slip some pizza sauce, cheese, and toppings between two tortillas and microwave until the cheese is a gooey, delicious mess. If you are feeling generous you can cut it like a pizza and share with your roommate. Or not.

Hard-shell taco with meat, cheese, lettuce, to...

Hard-shell taco with meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and onions. Taco! Taco! Taco!

For dinner, lets go all out and make some microwave tacos. This one is best to make for a few people (the recipe serves about 4) but it can be scaled down very easily. First get three of your closest friends and neighbors to go to the grocery store with you, since you’re cooking, maybe you can even convince them to buy the food! Get a half pound of ground beef, some chili powder, salt, garlic powder, cheese, onion, lettuce, and salsa. To make your tacos, crumble the beef into a bowl and cover it with a plate. Microwave it for about five minutes on high, then stir in about 3/4 teaspoon chili powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder. Add some water if it looks dry and cook it covered for another three to four minutes or until there is no pink left in the meat. Dice the onion and shred cheese and the lettuce, a cheese grater works well for both. Fill your tacos with the beef, veggies, cheese, and salsa and enjoy.

Whether you use your new mastery of the microwave to eat healthier, show off to your roommates, or impress the cutie down the hall, remember to always make sure food is thoroughly cooked, and it will be thoroughly delicious. For some more great microwave recipes, be sure to check out allrecipes.com.