Crafts to Ease Summer Fatigue

With just a few weeks left of summer, the kids are showing signs of summer fatigue — and you feel it every time they utter the words “I’m bored.” They’re out of ideas on how to take advantage of these last days of summer and that means you probably are, too. But don’t get too stressed out — you need to save your energy for back to school shopping. Here are a few ideas to keep the kids busy until school starts.bead-suncatchers

Naptime Crafts The Artful Parent uses her little one’s naptime as an opportunity to do simple crafts with her older child. During one such naptime, she created suncatchers out of melted craft beads. It’s a very easy project to do with the kids, but it does require using a hot oven so they need supervision. All you need are colorful craft beads and a muffin tin and you have mock-stained glass ornaments. They’ll catch the summer sun now and bring a little sparkle to your home during the darkest days of winter (but we’re trying not to think about that quite yet).freezer-banana-pops

Mini-Treats What kid doesn’t want to make her own chocolate covered treat? These freezer banana pops from Kids Activities Blog is a scaled-down version of chocolate covered bananas you get at the county fair. The idea is so simple — cut a banana into bite-sized pieces, dip them in chocolate and sprinkles, let them chill and you have a grand, kid-sized sweet treat that isn’t so bad for the little ones.bird-feeder

Bird Treats Another simple treat keeps the kids busy for hours and keeps the neighborhood birds fed comes from Growing a Jeweled Rose. It’s a DIY bird feeder that requires next to no planning, very few supplies and minimal supervision. All it is is a toilet paper tube, smeared with peanut butter and rolled in bird seed. It takes just a few minutes to put together, but watching the birds flock to their creation, it holds kids’ attention until it’s time to go to the pool.gumdrop-bridges

Double-Duty Craft Test your kids’ engineering energy by putting them to work on a gumdrop bridge. Galileo Camps offers this idea to set your kids loose with a box of gumdrops and toothpicks and see if they can come up with a structure before they eat all the gumdrops. It tests their critical thinking skills and the gumdrops are their incentive to come up with something awesome. As a bonus, it gets their brains working again to warm up for the first day of school.bubble-paint

Bubbling with Talent If your kids have a long day of doing nothing ahead of them, perhaps some bubbles are in order. Meet the Dubiens put together a tutorial on bubble painting. Mix a little paint with dish soap, use straws to blow out a few bubbles onto paper and you have art! It’s pretty hard to mess up and the results are almost always gallery-quality art.

LTD Commodities has ideas and products to keep every member of the family busy any day of the year. From summertime crafts for the kids to Christmas gifts for your parents, shop LTD for great products and practical prices.

 

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week for Labor Day

We have less than a month until Labor Day. While we’re trying to cram last-minute summer activities to enjoy the weather and time off, we also need to start planning our last weekend of summer. Whether you’re taking off for that last gasp of summer or you’re sticking around for a cookout, we have loads of items to make your Labor Day memorable. Here is this week’s Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week for Labor Day.owl-luggage-set

Travel in Style Your young one will travel in style with the 2-Pc. Kids’ Fashion Luggage Set. They will have everything they need for a family vacation or trip to grandma’s house. The travel tote features a front pocket and an open interior for storing books, toys, a tablet and more. A 4″-16″ adjustable body strap and 2 handles makes carrying easy. The rolling suitcase features a roomy interior with elastic straps to hold everything together and a front pocket that holds miscellaneous items. A 13″ telescopic handle and 2 wheels allow for easy pulling. Both luggage pieces have secure zipper closures. trunk-organizer

Practical Travel Aids Banish messy trunks with a Collapsible Trunk Organizer with Removable Cooler. Use all 3 compartments to store maps, emergency supplies, shopping bags and more. Or, use one of the compartments to hold the removable cooler. Fully insulated, the cooler has room for snacks and drinks, a full-zip closure and a handle. The organizer has pockets on both ends. Both the organizer and cooler fold for compact storage. fishing-rod-case

Fishing on the Fly This Fishing Rod Case is a must-have organizer for anyone who loves to fish. The case holds 5 rods on the outside, plus more rods and equipment on the inside. The exterior features pockets on the bottom and padded straps with fabric-magic at the top to secure and protect the 5 rods. The rod case also features a quick fastener strap that secures gear during transport. A zipper on the side provides easy access to the large inner storage compartment. Also has a huge exterior pocket with fastener for banksticks and essentials, plus a padded adjustable shoulder strap and carrying handle. table-top-caddy
Convenient Condiments The Black Scroll Tabletop Caddy lets you organize and display mealtime extras in a convenient and portable powder-coated wire basket. The slotted handle of the Condiment Caddy holds menu cards for your events. The divided Cutlery Caddy has 4 compartments for easy utensil organization. towel-for-two

Towel for Two After taking a swim, wrap yourself up in a Colorful Dog or Cat Beach Towel. The 28″ x 58″ Towel is great for a quick dry off. The 54″ x 68″ Towel for Two is big enough to share. Fiber-reactive towels will not fade or bleed in the sun or wash.

Simplify Your Life Week: Ideas to Simplify Your Life

ClutterIt is “Simplify Your Life Week” — it’s an idea that’s great in theory, but difficult in practice only because it’s hard to know where to start and, therefore, hard to get started. But we’ve put together a list of small things you can do to make your life easier. Here are 5 ideas to simplify your life.

Declutter Decluttering is a big task, but if you tackle a little bit at a time, it can be easy. Take an hour after dinner and, armed with a garbage bag, go through your house from bedroom to bathroom and start throwing away all the things you keep “just in case.” Sometimes you can say “just in case” for years — but when you make the decision that there will be no case for keeping some items, you’ll feel just a little bit lighter.

Electronics-Free Time Take one night a week and declare it an electronics-free night. You don’t have to forgo radio or music, but turn off your cell phone, computer and television and figure out how to entertain yourself without them. It can be a liberating experience — perhaps you’ll be more productive, finish that book you’ve been trying to get through or start conquering your holiday to-do list (it’s never too early to start!). It’s amazing how much our devices distract us.

clutterShred Those documents the IRS tells you to keep for seven years have probably been in that accordion file for ten years. It’s time to start shredding. Don’t do it all at once — we want to keep it simple — just shred one year at a time. It shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes — just 15 minutes to clear out a year’s worth of junk.

Make Better Use of Your Time We work all week to relax on the weekend, but it’s not relaxing if you have to spend it cleaning. Start doing your chores during the week after work. Clean your bathroom on Mondays, do laundry on Tuesdays, clean the kitchen on Wednesdays and do all of your grocery shopping on Thursdays. You might think you’ll be too tired to do these things during the week, but with your weekends free of chores, you’ll find the energy to be able to enjoy that free time.clutter

Start Saying No Don’t take on too much. Sometimes obligations — either social or work obligations — make our lives feel more complicated and stressful than they can be. Rather than giving your time and energy to someone else, give it back to yourself. Rest, relax and enjoy your free time rather than rush from one obligation to another.

LTD Commodities strives to make our customers lives easier. From helpful hints for everyday tasks to products to simplify your chores, LTD has it all!

July Pinteresting Picks

Our Pinterest followers are taking care of business! Even as the summer starts to wind down, our followers are ramping up their home improvements. Whether they’re gardening or going on a road trip, the common theme among their favorite pins is organization.  Here are the July Pinteresting Picks.Laundry-room-Wall-Hangings

Home Organization Lighten the load on laundry day with a funny yet functional Laundry Room Wall Hanging. Each wooden sign features a visual accent that can also come in handy as you work. The Laundry sign (15-3/4″H x 7-7/8″W x 1-1/2″D) has 3 knobs to hang small articles of clothing as you fold or sort. Keep the Change (10″H x 8″W x 3-3/4″D) has a glass mason jar attached with a raffia tie that you can use to hold coins found in pockets, buttons that have come loose and other small objects left in the hamper. Lost Socks (15-7/8″H x 9″W x 1″D) has 3 clothespins to hold separated socks while you look for their mates. Each comes ready to hang.

 

solar-garden-postLight Up the Garden Put an elegant finishing touch on your home with a Solar Garden Post. This classic accent features a teardrop shape enhanced with scrollwork. The lantern at the top is solar-powered, so it needs no time-consuming installation. Glows with constant white light for up to 8 hours on a full charge. On/off switch. A metal ring near the bottom of the Solar Post with Planter holds a 6″ pot. Some assembly required; assembly hardware included. 29″ x 13-3/4″. Metal and polypropylene.folding-deck-tables

Outdoor Convenience Folding Deck Table sets up in seconds and folds down flat when not in use. This attractive wood table comes with metal clamps and brackets that easily secure it to a porch or deck railing. Great for outdoor entertaining, the folding table is also ideal for decks or balconies with limited space. Fits railings up to 6″ wide and can hold up to 50 lbs. 23-3/8″ x 19-3/8″ x 16-1/4″.

extension-cord-sealSafe Connections Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals. The case snaps around the point where the cords come together, and a rubber seal keeps out rain, snow and mud. An internal locking safety mechanism holds cords securely together. These cases are a simple solution that will prevent shorting out and eliminate the chore of reconnecting cords that have been accidentally pulled apart. 3″ dia. x 8’L. Plastic.quilted-auto-organizer

Convenient Compartments Keep everything a driver needs at hand with a 2-Pc. Quilted Auto Organizer Set. The 7-pocket car seat organizer holds maps, magazines, paperwork, snacks and more. Hang it on the front passenger seat–just slip its strap under the headrest. The dashboard organizer features 2 pockets for storing such items as a cell phone, sunglasses, pens and more. Comes with a clip for attaching it to a dashboard vent. Cotton. Imported.

 

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week for Backyard Camping

The countdown to the end of summer is on and we have a lot of summer activities to fit into our last days of freedom. At the top of the list is having a backyard camp out so we put together a list of items we think you should pack for your overnight trip in the yard. Here are this week’s Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week for Backyard Camping.Inflatable-Sleeping-Bags

Sleepy Time Make sleeping away from home more comfortable with a Licensed Inflatable Sleeping Bag. The sleeping bag has an inflatable mattress that adds extra cushioning for resting on the floor or ground. Its headrest has a slight pillow shape. The comfy cover fits perfectly over the mattress. Included manual pump makes it easy to inflate and deflate.

Weather-Radio-Flashlight

Light Up the Night The only device you’ll need in an emergency! The Weather Radio Flashlight will warn you of impending severe weather, keep you up to date on the storm’s progress and provide you with light during a power outage. Features AM/FM and NOAA weather band radio. Gives an alert signal for all National Weather Service hazard broadcasts 24/7. The flashlight offers both area illumination and emergency flashers. Includes a built-in, retractable 110V AC home charger and a hand-cranking feature that ensures you’ll never be without power. Has a phone charger socket for recharging your cell phone. Colorful-Fire-Packets

Colorful Campfire Transform your fire into a dazzling display of colors with the Set of 5 Colorful Fire Packets. Simply toss an unopened pack into your indoor/outdoor wood-burning fire and watch as the flames transform to shades of blue, green, purple and more. Size and intensity of fire determines how many packets are needed. An average fire requires 1 packet for approx. 45 minutes of color.

Camo-HoodieCover Up He’ll be nice and warm wearing this Boys’ Camouflage Fleece Hooded Jacket. The full-zip jacket features the Highland Timber(TM) camo print. The fabric is designed for maximum breathability, with an anti-pill finish that makes the jacket durable and long lasting. Has 2 front slit pockets.

hot-dog-reelGood Eats Turn the crank of the Marshmallow & Hot Dog Reel Roaster, and the skewer rotates to cook all sides evenly. Kids and adults will love to make meals and snacks over an open flame with the Reel Roaster. The stainless steel skewer is easier to use than traditional skewers and cleaner than cooking on a stick. The skewer is telescopic and the roaster extends from 16-3/4″ to 34″L, so you can control the distance you stand from the fire. Cleanup is fast and easy–simply remove the skewer from the reel to wash. Get several for your next camping trip, cookout or BBQ. The easy way to evenly roast a hot dog or create perfect s’mores.

These last few weeks of summer are going by fast! Make the most of them with LTD Commodities. From ideas for spending time outdoors to products to help keep you entertained, shop LTD for everything to close out the summer right.

Watermelon Day: 5 Unique Watermelon Recipes

watermelonAugust 3 is National Watermelon Day — it makes sense because it’s in season and taking a bite is taking a break from the heat (but we’re not complaining — we haven’t forgotten last winter!). In honor of the day we’ve picked a few watermelon recipes that are so unusual you probably haven’t tried them. Here are 5 unique watermelon recipes to celebrate National Watermelon Day.

watermelon-steakSteak The Ravenous Couple brought us this one: Watermelon Steak. It’s sweet, savory and surprisingly pretty easy to put together. The hardest part might be cutting it thick enough to stay together while it roasts. For those who aren’t into fresh, raw watermelon but want to take advantage of summer’s bounty, this might be the watermelon recipe for you.

watermelon-leatherLeather If you have kids, this one may be a good afternoon project to get ready for the school year: Watermelon Leather. It comes from Baked By Rachel — a bit of a throwback to her childhood when fruit roll-ups were a lunchtime staple. Many of us had the same experience and were probably equally curious about how it was possible to turn fruit into leather. Check out her blog, and you’ll have your answer!

watermelon-picklePickle This one might be for more adventurous eaters, but if you eat a lot of watermelon, you’ll have a lot of rinds to experiment with to make Pickled Watermelon Rind from Foodista. There isn’t a lot of work involved — mostly boiling — but it takes a day or two to get it together for the finished product. If you’re into making the most of your scraps, this is definitely worth a try.

watermelon-jerkyJerky This one is not unlike fruit leather, but it’s not like it, either. Dash of Butter brings us Watermelon Jerky. This recipe is awesome because there’s one ingredient: watermelon. What’s even more awesome are the directions: slice it and stick it in the dehydrator. If you have a dehydrator, perhaps you’d like to get an abundance of watermelon while you can so you can make fruit snacks for the kids that will last them through Halloween!

watermelon-jamJam For those afraid to stretch beyond their comfort zone, a good jam can be whipped up from your citrullus lanatus. This recipe is from Global Table Adventure. She was inspired to make this by Melon Day in Turkmenistan where they eat watermelon jam with toast and tea. If “boil and go” is all it takes, this recipe is definitely worth trying in the waning days of summer!

We make the most of every season at LTD Commodities! From kitchen tools to make your favorite watermelon recipes to decor to make your Thanksgiving celebration special, shop LTD for great products at reasonable prices.

National Mutt Day: Our Favorite Dogs of the Internet

July 31 is National Mutt Day. At LTD, we love all dogs — every size, shape and breed, but we especially love our mutts. To honor mutts for National Mutt Day, we picked out our favorite dogs of the internet to brighten your Monday.

We all think we have the best dog in the world. But this dog knows he’s the best dog in the world.

If you’ve ever had a dog, you know how much dogs love balls! Some dogs won’t stop chasing a ball until they’ve got their jaws locked on it — even when the ball is too big for its mouth. So when this pup saw a ball pit, he got a little… excited.

This dog loves to play fetch so much, he’s ditched his owner for something a little more playful. Watch that tail wag.

This dog doesn’t need a ball to have fun — just a mattress and two little girls to show him how to jump.

If you’ve ever known the pain of leaving your dog for more than a few days, you’ll know the joy this dog dad felt when he returned to his pup after being away for six months. It’ll break your heart — in the best way, of course.

Disciplining a dog is no treat for dogs or dog owners — and this pup knows what he’s gotten himself into after knocking over the garbage. But it’s hard to disappear when all eyes are on you.

Because it’s Monday, we saved the best for last. This puppy at doggy day care spots his owner and his reaction is priceless. He makes you want to get up and dance!

There aren’t many things more comforting than the love of a dog, so at LTD we try to return that love as best we can. Whether we’re shining a light on the mutts of the world for National Mutt Day or we’re providing pet beds for dog owners to keep their pups happy, look to LTD for products and inspiration to make your dog’s tail wag.

Items We Adore: LTD’s Product Picks for the Week for Christmas in July

We’re just five months away from Christmas! It seems early, but it’s never too early to get a jump on your Christmas shopping!! There are so many people to shop for (including ourselves!), it makes sense to take advantage of summer sales for our holiday gifts. We have a few products to get you started! Here are this week’s Product Picks for the Week for Christmas in July.manicure-lapdesk

Nail It Get professional nail care at home with the Manicure Lapdesk. It includes everything you need for a do-it-yourself manicure or to give one to a girlfriend. The airflow nail dryer dries wet nails quickly and has nonslip silicone-padded feet. The ergonomic sculpting tool comes with 5 interchangeable attachments for filing, buffing and shaping nails, plus a plastic storage case. The lapdesk itself gives you a hard surface to work on, with polyfoam bead padding underneath for comfort wherever you use it. It has a built-in zippered storage area to hold accessories and a cutout handle for easy carrying.Tipsy-Tower

Garden Variety Gifts Create a vertical garden with a hint of illusion with Tipsy Tower Plant Stands. Simply slide your own planter pots down the bar at an angle. Each pot will rest slightly on the one below it, creating a fun, gravity-defying look. 4-Ft. tower can be used in 4 different configurations as the upright tower rod is actually 2 pieces. It’s designed to accommodate 4 or more pots. 2-Ft. tower can be used in 2 different configurations and is designed to accommodate 3 to 5 pots.tart-warmer

Good Scents Fill your home with wonderful aromas with a 2-In-1 Ceramic Tart Warmer. It works with scented tarts or jar candles. Just plug it into any standard outlet and use the in-line toggle switch to activate it. The pretty porcelain design adds to its appeal. Butterfly’s original artwork by Lemme Studio. Willow Tree’s artwork by Teresa Kogut.photo-wall-mural

Mural Memories Customize your decor with a Photo Frame Wall Mural. Easy to apply, this imaginative mural includes several cardboard frames for adding your own photos to the piece. The adorable Owl Family includes 8 heart-shaped cardboard frames that hold photos. Show off your branch of the Family Tree with the 7 cardboard frames in this classic design. Oversized decal can be removed and repositioned without damaging walls.disney-socks

Fancy Feet Let her feet do the talking with the adorable 7-Pair Girls’ Disney Sock Set. A great stocking stuffer, this value set brings her favorite character to her feet for comfy, everyday wear.

Get ready for every holiday with LTD Commodities! From ideas to get your Christmas shopping started to products to make your Thanksgiving dinner memorable, shop LTD for great products priced for fun.

National Hot Dog Month: Best Cities for Hot Dogs

Hot-dogJuly is National Hot Dog Month — it’s no surprise because with all of the cookouts, the hot dog is at the top of the list for easiest (and tastiest) food to grill. But everyone has a different way to eat a hot dog — and some of those can’t be described as anything but interesting. Topping the dog is usually where opinions differ (opinions are quite strong if you’re talking about ketchup), but everyone is entitled to their opinions — including cities who have very strong opinions. Here are a few of the best cities for hot dogs with the strongest opinions on how they’re prepared.

Cape Neddick In Maine, they go to Cape Neddick to get their hot dog fix. The hot dogs are steamed and 90% of them are topped with mayonnaise and onion sauce. Compared to a Chicago dog, Maine hot dog toppings may be pared down, but outsiders think they’re just as weird.

Chicago In the City of Big Shoulders you get a hot dog with Big Toppings. To an outsider, having an all-beef hot dog on a poppy seed bun topped with yellow mustard, diced onions, neon green sweet pickle relish (has to be neon), a whole dill pickle spear, tomato slices, whole sport peppers and a dash of celery salt, is totally weird and totally too much. But to a Chicagoan, it tastes like home.Hot-dog

Detroit Detroiters eat Coney Island Hot Dogs or “Coneys” but they are a far cry from the brown mustard and sauerkraut people in Coney Island actually eat. A Coney is an all-beef hot dog topped with all-meat chili, raw onion and yellow mustard. The name comes from the Coney Island style restaurant, but the hot dog originated in Michigan.

Honolulu If you’re traveling to Honolulu or other parts of Hawaii, you’ll find the brilliant Hawaiian style hot dog. It’s a Hawaiian sweet bun pierced in the center – so it doesn’t have to be sliced – and a grilled Polish sausage is placed inside so the whole dog is wrapped in bread. It’s garnished with mango or pineapple relish and Hawaiian mustard or garlic lemon sauce. A Hawaiian dog with shave ice for dessert – that’s island style.

Los Angeles Dodger Dogs are what the ballpark is serving in Los Angeles. It’s a skinless, foot-long pork dog, grilled or steamed and topped however you like it. That means you can put mustard AND ketchup on it without getting any ribbing from other hot dog eaters.

New York City New Yorkers keep it simple: an all-beef hot dog, spicy brown mustard and sauerkraut or raw onions. From the carts on Central Park all the way to Coney Island, this is how you get a hot dog in New York.Hot-dog

Seattle Just when you didn’t think hot dogs could get any weirder, we arrive at Seattle. In Seattle, a Polish sausage is split down the middle, cloaked in a toasted bialy and shmeared with cream cheese. It originated in the late ‘80s, early ‘90s; much like the grunge music of the same period, it is an acquired taste.

Tucson In Tucson and in other parts of Arizona, you will find the Sonoran hot dog. Being it was created in the Southwest, this makes sense. Kind of. It’s like a taco-hot dog fusion. It has hot and cold toppings; hot: pinto beans, bacon and grilled onions; cold: diced onions, diced tomatoes, jalapeno sauce, mustard and mayonnaise. It’s a lot for a wiener to take on, but it’s a winner.

At LTD Commodities, we celebrate hot dogs in any way they’re dressed up! Whether it’s topped with cream cheese or ketchup, as long as the barbecue is bumpin’, we won’t turn down a dog.

Best Places to Camp Around the Country

campingThere is only so much time Mother Nature allows us to enjoy warm weather — so have to take advantage of summer in every way we can. Of course camping allows us to be one with the outdoors both day and night. And while we know what to do, figuring out where to go might be a challenge. Here are some of the best places to camp around the country.

Florida Not far from Cape Coral, on the Gulf Coast of Florida, cushy camping surrounded by water is best at Cayo Costa State Park where secluded beaches are lined by pine forests and swamps. The island is only accessible by ferry or private boat which means the nine mile island has hiking trails to lead you from the campgrounds to the water to snorkel and fish or watch for manatees and dolphins.

campingIllinois In the southernmost tip of Illinois, nestled between Missouri and Indiana is Giant City State Park. The park has everything you might want for an active camping trip – rock climbing, horseback riding, hiking and fishing. The campsites vary in accommodations – sites with water, electricity and showers are available for reservation, but you can also use the walk-in sites without all the amenities.

California Three hours west of San Francisco and four hours north of Los Angeles, is some of California’s most impressive landscape at Yosemite National Park. Cascading waterfalls, towering sequoias and tranquil trails attract more than four million visitors every year. There are thirteen campsites where you can pitch a tent, but motels and cabins are available for those who like a bed and bath.

New York Just north of Lake Ontario and south of Canada, Canoe-Picnic Point State Park is open for island tent camping. What makes this campground more interesting than others is it is only accessible by boat, so you have to pack accordingly and budget for boat rental. The site is great for fishing and you can cook what you catch at the picnic ground where there are communal cooking facilities.camping

Pennsylvania In eastern Pennsylvania, camping, fishing and hiking is best at Locust State Park. Hiking and biking allows you to take in the lush forest and wetlands on your own, but the park provides guided tours to examine the lake and Pennsylvania wildlife. There are lakeside campsites for those who want to swim or boat and sites to accommodate RVs and campers.

Wherever you are, you’re never too far from a great camping trip. You don’t have to drive to enjoy the great outdoors; sometimes your backyard makes the perfect campground. Near or far, shop LTD Commodities for great products to make your camping trip spectacular.