Life Hacks for Your Best 2017

January 24, 2017

What are life hacks? Last year,  bloggers, tipsters, hipsters and experts dreamed up some remarkable ones. If you haven’t already tried them, here are a few ideas and innovations to make your life easier and more enjoyable in 2017!

Furniture Hacks

hacksIf you’ve watched Flea Market Flip on HGTV, you know a little elbow grease and creativity can turn castoffs into pretty pieces of furniture and decor. has endless ideas for turning curbside throwaways into one of a kind creations, like an old door that becomes a headboard (, a dresser that’s transformed into a children’s storage bench ( and an old trashed television reborn as a table/bookcase (

Craft Hacks

This clever idea from SewingBarefoot takes book covers from hardback bestsellers to create a façade for a storage container. For this combination craft/storage and life hack, scroll about halfway down to see Shannon’s tutorial.

Or you can make your own lava lamp, heat-sensitive color-changing slime, silly putty and star constellations right in your own Crystal Valley home. It’s all right here from STEM-conscious moms (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) looking for fun and educational DIY crafts and activities for their kids.

Kitchen Hacks

Latigo Lace on Etsy gets a big hand clap with this a practical solution for home cooks who struggle with math. This graphic decal translates cups and ounces into pints and quarts. You can order the decal for $13, or draw your own!

CookingLight offers up great tips about improvising a pastry brush and adding unique flavors to quinoa with tea (think Earl Grey and Chai), plus these timesavers.  You’ll see tips for thawing meat faster, an easier way to shred cooked chicken (besides the two-fork method), and why you should always have smoked paprika, capers and simple syrup on hand.

Rather than spend 15 minutes waiting for a big pot of water to boil, says Harold McGee, author of The Keys to Good Cooking, place the pasta in a large pan with a quart and a half of cold water over it and turn up the heat. As you stir, the pasta will cook in less time and you’ll have enough starchy water to make Cacio e Pepe!

Healthy Breakfast Hacks

If you’re always on the go and your idea of a quick and healthy breakfast is grabbing a yogurt on your way out the door, keep reading. TheYummyLife takes mason jars and packs them for the fridge the night before with yogurt, fruit and no-cook oatmeal for a bit more nutrition and fiber. and offer up another 30+ simple meals for busy mornings to get you fueled and in fighting shape for whatever the day brings.

Winter Life Hacks

This video of 10 winter life hacks is worth passing along if only for the how-to winter-proof your shoes, stop a cold draft from blowing under a door and create a Vick’s® eucalyptus balm for your shower.

Sleep Hacks

If waking up in the dark is a challenge during the winter, try following the 90-minute sleep cycle rule. The idea is to start catching Zs so that you wake up at the END of a sleep cycle (90 minutes on average) instead of in the middle when you’re in deeper sleep. If you count backwards from the time you want to wake up, that should help you set your bedtime. Here’s a sleep calculator to help you figure it out!

And to fall asleep in 30 seconds, try one of these simple scientific hacks for better sleep!

Start 2017 at Southshore!

The master-planned community of Southshore aims at making life better for everybody, especially its residents. Walk through one of the beautiful models at Village Homes, explore the new home collections from Richmond American Homes, and visit Century Communities. Each builder offers ranch and two-story models priced from the $400s to the $700s.