Refreshing Blackberry Iced Tea

Have you ever had blackberry iced tea? I love all kinds of tea, but this one is definitely one of my favorites! I am excited to share with you!

Refreshing, Low-Calorie Blackberry Iced Tea 

 

First and foremost, I wanted to say that this has been my most-viewed post ever!! Thank you to everyone for visiting my lil old blog! 🙂

Spring will soon arrive, which means Summer will be arriving before long! Or, maybe it’s just that I am tired of the grey skies and cold days and I am just sitting here dreaming of summertime.  And because I am so desperate for Summer these days, I feel like anytime is the perfect time to get started on your sweet tea drinking.  If you want to add a new, fruity version of sweet tea to your repertoire, check out our favorite tea recipe!

Do you want to cool down with a refreshing, low-calorie summertime drink?

HOW TO MAKE REFRESHING BLACKBERRY ICED TEA

We live on about an acre and every year in late summer we end up with an overabundance of blackberries on our property.  I have a love/hate relationship with these blackberries as I hate those thorns and wow do they like to grow, however, they are so yummy!  They actually act as the border for one side of our property. We trim them back often, but during mid-summer right when they are blooming they look beautiful with all of the white flowers.  Anyway….back to the overabundance topic. I am always looking for ways to use them up.

 

My kids and I go out and pick them in the mornings before it gets too hot during the summer days.  We eat lots of them of course, but we also freeze lots of them for later use in smoothies and milkshakes as well, but right when we pull them off the vines we make our family-famous blackberry iced tea! Here is what I do to make this delicious and refreshing beverage:

  • First, combine 2 cups of fresh blackberries and 3/4 cup Sugar.  Combine together and either mash or puree in a food processor.  We prefer to taste the fruit pieces in our drink so I simply mash ours with our fruit masher.
  • Mix with 1 gallon of unsweetened Ice Tea (I used Lipton Tea this time, but I also really like it with the Lipton Green Tea)
  • Serve over ice, garnish if desired and enjoy! 

PRINTABLE REFRESHING BLACKBERRY ICED TEA RECIPE

When I made these, I used Tall Glass Beer Steins, but I have since switched to this awesome Mason Jar Set!  It is so cute for serving tea to guests! There is just something about Iced Tea in a mason jar that makes me smile and think about my time visiting family in the South. 🙂  We have this tea on hand often during the Summer months, but I ALWAYS serve either this or this Strawberry Iced Tea during our Summertime BBQs and it’s always a hit!  (If you need some tips on throwing an awesome BBQ, check out this post)

 

refreshing blackberry iced tea from foothills mama

 

Even my husband loves this blackberry iced tea and he is not a tea drinker!

*45 calories per 8 ounce serving.


 

For full transparency, I don’t like super sweet drinks, so you may think this needs more sugar.  I love this as is though because it’s sweet and fruity and simply tastes like summertime.  I am really working on my health and fitness right now too so this is perfect for enjoying a delightful beverage without a bunch of empty calories.  I have spent a lot of time in the south though and I know how people love their sweet iced tea.  So, feel free to add as much sugar as you wish! It’s all about personal taste! 🙂

 

Other Recipes and Posts to Check Out:

Refreshing Strawberry Iced Tea

Easy Ways to Workout When You are Short on Time and Money

Frugal Fitness: Hiking, Nature’s Best Workout! My 3 Favorite Oregon Trails

How I Got Rid of My Migraines for Good!

11 Fun, DIY Backyard Projects that You Can Do This Year!

   

Do you have any big plans for your home or yard this Spring?  Do you want to spruce up your yard and/or patio for the nice weather this year? Are you wanting to try out some new DIY backyard projects? Check out these cute and (mostly) easy DIY Backyard projects and games! I think I might try a couple of these out with my kids.

Check out these 11 Great DIY Backyard Projects and Games:

1. DIY Outdoor Cinder Block Bench

I love the idea of hanging out outside with iced tea in hand, sitting on this adorable bench.

2. DIY Pallet Planter Box

I’m all about planters.  Our property is unique in that much of it is concrete.  That means that DIY Backyard projects are the norm and planters are a great way for us to plant flowers and/or veggies here!

3. Gnome Garden

Oh my goodness, this DIY Backyard gnome garden is going to be the hit of the neighborhood.

4. DIY Garden Markers

Gardening puns are life!  Okay, maybe not life, but I do enjoy a good laugh and these Puns work well on these markers.

5. Patio Bench Refinishing Project

Reduce, reuse, recycle and refinish?  I love a good refinishing project, don’t you?

6. Fairy Garden

Fairies, fairies, all about the fairies!  If you have been wanting a fairy garden of your own, here’s how you can do it!

7. Easy, DIY Splash Pad

Why load the kids up in the car for a trip to your local splash pad? This DIY Splash Pad will provide hours of entertainment and fun for the kids and doesn’t rack up your fuel bill!

8. Backyard Obstacle Course

Keep the kids busy outside with this fun backyard obstacle course! Who am I kidding?  This is going to keep the grown-ups busy too!

9. DIY Pool Noodle Games

Pool noodles can be bought at the dollar store, so not only is this diy backyard game fun and easy to make, but it is also extremely budget-friendly! I’m sure we all know how much I love to save money, so if I can buy a couple of pool noodles at Dollar Tree and create hours of entertainment for my kids, you can count me in!

10. DIY Rope Swing

When I was young we had a tire swing and a rope swing.  While I did have lots of fun on both of them, I had a particular fondness for the rope swing.  I literally would spend hours and hours on it during the summer. Sometimes swinging with my friends and siblings, sometimes just sitting and reading a book.  When I became a teenager, you could find me with my Walkman listening to my favorite songs while sitting on our rope swing. Doesn’t that make you want to build one for your kids?

11. DIY Backyard Container Garden

I have been thinking about doing a container garden this year.  It will be a great way to utilize the space that we have here.

So, if you are ready to become a DIY Backyard warrior, give one of these projects a shot! They are cute, fun, and none of them look too difficult to create and for a non-crafty person like me that is a huge bonus! I always find myself intimitated by these amazing Pinterest bloggers who can put together a beautiful project with seemingly little effort. That is not the kind of gal I am, I assure you. I am more the Pinterest-fail kind of gal, but that dosn’t stop me from trying.

What DIY backyard projects have you taken on in the past? How did it work out for you? I would love to hear your stories and see any photos for inspiration!

How to Preserve Your Zucchini Bounty

The Best Ways to Preserve Zucchini What is the goal of every gardener?  That’s right, a successful bountiful harvest!  The next question is what on earth are you going to do with that harvest?  

Squash and specifically zucchini is often a successful crop, with many gardeners begging people to take it away because there is just too much left over. Zucchini is awesome because it really just grows and grows and if you don’t pick it at just the right time, you are going to have some GIANT zucs on your hands!  If you are like many garden enthusiasts, you have tried out just about every way you can think of to So what can you do?  You don’t want it to go to waste do you?  How about preserving it?

That’s right, you can preserve your zucchini for use later in the year! Here are a few of my favorite ways to preserve zucchini:

Zucchini Bread.  Zucchini bread is hands down one of the yummiest ways to eat zucchini!  I love making lots of zucchini bread and freezing it to eat later!  I make both regular zucchini bread as well as chocolate zucchini bread and it’s always a popular treat!  You can freeze the whole cooked loaf of zucchini bread, or you can freeze just the prepared batter.  Pour them into large freezer bags and store them in your freezer to be baked later!

Pickle it.  If you like pickles, one really good way to preserve your zucchini is to pickle it!  Just use your favorite pickle recipe and use zucchini in place of cucumbers and voila’ you have pickles! 

Dry it.  Did you know that you can put zucchini in your food dehydrator?  Seriously, just slice your zucchini up into thin slices and dry it in your dehydrator.  Use the dried zucchini later in recipes, cook in oil or season then and eat like chips!

Freeze it.  Did you know that you can freeze zucchini?  It may seem impossible due to how watery zucchinis are.  If you were to freeze the zucchini whole, it would not work well.  Likely the water would expand and damage the cells of the fruit.  Luckily, there are ways around this.  

  • Use a shredder.  Break out your favorite cheese shredder and go to town shredding the zucchini!  Use a paper towel to pat  some of the excess moisture and then store flat in freezer bags.  It can be used later for use in zucchini bread recipes, pasta sauces or soups and salads.
  • Blanch then bread.  First slice the zucchini, then blanch it to prevent mushiness.   Coat the slices in your favorite breading recipe then freeze.  You can fry these up later.

Farm Stand Tuna Salad

farm stand tuna salad

I absolutely love Summer time!  I love all of the farm stands that pop up locally and all of the fresh fruits and vegetables that are available.

I picked up some fresh veggies this morning at my local non-GMO farmstand and made myself some fresh Farm Stand Tuna Salad for lunch!

I sliced some cucumbers and tomatoes, mixed in some tuna and added a little dressing and voila’ – Fresh Delicious and healthy salad!

  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Cucumber
  • 1 can/pouch Tuna fish w/water
  • 2 tbsp Italian Dressing

Mix ingredients together and serve chilled!

Gardman 4-Tier Mini Greenhouse Just $40, Reg. $60!

Do you like growing your own garden?  I love growing my own vegetables at home!  This Gardman 4-Tier Mini Greenhouse is ideal for the gardener with limited space! These are especially great for starting seedlings that you will later transfer to your garden.

For whatever reason, I struggle growing tomatoes. Everything else I can go with no problems, but tomatoes just don’t like me, so I think a Greenhouse like this might be just what I need! Amazon has it marked down to just $40 from its regular price of $59.99!

  • Small greenhouse with 4 shelves for deck, patio, or balcony
  • Ideal for seed propagation and plant growing and display
  • Sturdy shelves for pots and seed trays; plastic cover with full length roll up zipper
  • Dimensions when built: 62 by 27 by 19 inches (h x l x w); each tier is 12-1/2 inches high

Have you ever had your own greenhouse?  Was it successful?

 

Shipping is free as this item is over the $35 Super Saver Shipping amount, but keep in mind that Amazon prices can change without notice.  The prices I have posted are accurate at time of posting.

Add Some Color To Your Garden with These Seed Deals!

I am so excited for gardening season this year!  I am ready to start planting!  Check out these delicious and very colorful veggie seeds that I found on Amazon!

Purple Dragon Carrot 350 Seeds – Absolutely unique! Just $1.20 shipped!

Black Sea Man Tomato 10 Seeds – Heirloom Just $1.10 shipped!

Organic Rainbow Bell Pepper 40 Seeds, 240mg Just $1.30 shipped!

Purple Cauliflower 40 Seeds -LOW CARB!- Veggie Just $1.20 shipped!

Solar Yellow Carrot 150 Seeds – NEW – Veggie Just $1.20 shipped!

 

I love a colorful salad!

Have any of you tried these veggies?