Tag Archives: cheaper living

College Cooking On the Dime

Filed under: Health & Fitness - BookRenter Team
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Keep it cheap and easy with these mouthwatering dishes for a college student’s budget

by Guest Blogger Tiana Bouma

College is all about the cheap and easy. We students are usually on the hunt for better bargains at bars, easier classes, and quicker meals to cook. With the right recipes and some kitchen savvy, you can eat great even on a student’s budget. Here are some easy, cheap, and especially delicious recipes perfect for the student saver. They will make your taste buds jump for joy and save your wallet a few dollars along the way.

Breakfast Burritos

For a quick grab-and-go breakfast, you can make your own breakfast burritos and freeze them the night before. You will need:

by Dennis Amith

12 flour tortillas
6 eggs, scrambled
6 potatoes, diced and fried
grated cheese
cooked and diced bacon or sausage (optional)
salsa (optional)

  • Scramble the eggs and fry the potatoes in a pan until they are golden brown.
  • Soften the tortillas,  and cook or fry up the bacon or sausage.
  • Lay out the tortillas and add the filling ingredients after mixing them together. Roll up, tucking the ends in first, and freeze the extras.

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry Ramen

Using a staple food in every college student’s kitchen, make this extremely affordable dish a tad healthier with meat and tastier with flavoring that isn’t artificial.

1 package beef or spicy beef ramen noodles
2 cups water
1 lb. beef steak strips
2 tspn. oil
2 cups broccoli, cut up
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1/8 tspn. crushed red pepper (optional)

  • Cook noodles according to package directions and drain.
  • In skillet, cook brown beef and drain. Add oil, half of the seasoning packet, broccoli and onions.
  • Stir fry for five minutes. Add soy sauce and red pepper. Simmer for five more minutes. Serve over noodles, and slurp up!

Roasted Asparagus

by Elana's Pantry

Asparagus starts appearing in grocery stores around early spring, so stock up when you can! Roast this wonderful vegetable into a crisp, sweet delight.

1 lb. asparagus
2 tbsp. olive oil
½ tsp. salt

  • Clean asparagus and take each stalk in your hands. Bend the stalk and the asparagus will naturally snap at the point where it becomes tough.
  • Place the tips on a heavy baking pan and toss with the olive oil.
  • Roast at 425 degrees F for 5-10 minutes until the asparagus is tender and begins to brown.

Microwave Peanut Butter Fudge

Not into baking? Don’t be afraid! This four-step recipe only requires two ingredients.

1 (16 ounce) can vanilla frosting
1 (18 ounce) jar peanut butter

  • Empty an entire jar of peanut butter into a mixing bowl.
  • Heat vanilla frosting in its container (remember to take off the foil lining first) in the microwave for about 60 seconds or until completely melted.
  • Pour the melted frosting in the bowl with the peanut butter and mix well.
  • Quickly pour the mixture into a 9×13 pan, allow the fudge to set, cut into small squares and enjoy!

I hope these recipes will inspire you to think outside of your budget and get your stove fired up for more delicious dishes to come! What do you like to whip up in your kitchen?

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BookRenter.com Review

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By everythingcupcakes3

Check out the great BookRenter.com review!

Thank you everythingcupcakes3!

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Mike’s Top 3 Tips To Maximize Thanksgiving Break on the Cheap

Filed under: College Life - BookRenter Team
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By BookRenter Mike

By floodllama

The pilgrimage back home for Thanksgiving Break is one of my favorite times of the year. Since, I go to school so far away from home, it’s a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and see my family! That being said, I want to have as much fun as I can this week without spending a ton of money. Check out my top 3 favorite ways to enjoy Thanksgiving break without having to spend any money!

1) Enjoy a delicious home-cooked dinner at home with Family

My fraternity house has a meal plan that enables me to enjoy lunch and dinner four nights at week at a very low cost. Unfortunately, the meal plan food is less than satisfying. One of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving break is enjoying my mom’s home cooking. A family dinner always offers good laughs, plus it’ll help you rejuvenate for the upcoming finals push.

2) Attend a local event such as an High School athletic competition or Performing Arts Event

Often times these events will free or offered at very little cost to your wallet. These events will help you catch up with old friends and help you rediscover what makes home so special. Plus, there’s nothing better than watching your alma mater beat up on your local rival on the way to the state championship!

3) Give back to the community by helping out at a local food bank or soup kitchen

A lot of people say that their favorite part about Thanksgiving is the leftovers and for good reason, they are absolutely delicious! However, instead of enjoying them of Friday, why don’t you drive them over to the local food bank and drop them off to those in need? Better yet, helping out for a few hours at a soup kitchen will make you feel good and maybe help you work off some of the calories you accumulated from your Thanksgiving feast!

Since Thanksgiving is the time to give thanks, let your wallet have the opportunity to give you thanks my doing things that won’t cost you much money. What activities do you like to do when you go home that don’t cost much money?

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Top 5 Tips for Surviving Black Friday

Filed under: College Life - BookRenter Team
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By BookRenter Briana

by robholland

Black Friday… everyone looks forward to the sales, but dread the crowds. It can be a very hectic day if you aren’t prepared, so I have prepared a list of  tips so you can go out their with a little less stress.

1.      Do your research: Make sure you know what you want to buy and have a list prepared. Going into stores unprepared is like a war zone! Make sure you have your ads ready and organized. Check out bfreedom.com for a round up of all the sales and deals for your Black Friday shopping all in one place.

2.      Compare prices : check out sites like Price Grabber that can compare prices on certain products and tell you where the better deal is.

3.      Rest up and go prepared: After your Thanksgiving festivities head straight to bed. Hey,  if you are planning on hitting the stores at 3am you will need those extra zzz’s. Don’t forget to bring snacks and a water bottle. You don’t want low blood sugar and dehydration to add to the insanity.

4.      Divide and conquer & practice the buddy system. Bring family and friends with you ‘cuz its more fun and can be super helpful.  Plan your attack- have one person hold your spot in line while the others go grab the goodies.

5.      Stay home and shop on-line! – Online websites have caught onto Black Friday and have offered the public great deals right at your figure tips.

Don’t forget about Cyber Monday!

Hopefully you have gained a few tips on how to cope with shopping on Black Friday. It’s crazy out there so be prepared and try and have fun!

What do you do to prepare for black Friday?

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Tikiman Tips – Back to School All Month Long

Filed under: College Life - BookRenter Team
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Tikiman will be writing a weekly series providing tips and tricks on starting the school year off right. Every week a new topic will be covered highlighting easy and simple ways to jump to the head of the class or the line at the bar. Have an idea for a topic? Send an e-mail to Michael.Howard@BookRenter.com and he’ll be sure to answer your questions.

How to Move In to your Dorm or Apartment

So you’ve done the trips to Bed, Bath, and Beyond or Target, and you’ve successfully gathered all the stuff you think you’ll need in college. That’s great, but do you have any idea how you are going to move all of that gear into your new dorm or apartment? I didn’t think so. Thankfully, Tikiman is here to share with you some advice and tips on how to smoothly make your dorm room your new home.

Step 1: Bring Help!

Preferably someone strong and willing to haul furniture all day, even if it’s hot outside and the lemonade stand is charging outrageous prices.  But seriously, moving into college for the first time is a special moment, the literal end of an era and the start of a new adventure. Bringing help not only makes it easier to haul up that new TV you just bought, but it’s also someone to share your move-in day memories with.

Step 2: Use those Stairs!

This is a big trick, as long as it’s done correctly. Think about how much quicker you can carry your stuff up to your room when you don’t have to wait in the long elevator line. Of course if your new room is on the top floor of a ten story building, well then, I hope you brought some help! Try to use a lot of boxes or easy to carry packages, that way you won’t have to do a 360 to bring your new mega-toaster up a flight of narrow stairs.

Step 3: Eat breakfast/lunch before moving in

This is more about the negative side effects of not eating, because frankly there is nothing worse than moving in on an empty stomach. Boxes will seem twice as heavy, and you’ll swear that whoever is helping you isn’t picking up their share of the weight. So stop, eat a good meal, and then start game-planning where your new mahogany, I mean imitation wood, bookshelf should go.

Step 4: Learn the art of the meet and greet

It’s not uncommon to know only a few people when starting college and move-in day is a great opportunity to meet other people. Try to say Hi! to everybody you pass by, and always say your name at the end of any conversation. Most people are shy or nervous when first talking to a stranger, and usually they will forget your name during an introduction. Plus, maybe somebody you meet will you help bring up that new queen mattress that you just had to have.

Step 5: Trust the Experts!

Whether you brought your parents along or your RA is barking out recommendations, it would behoove you to listen to their advice. Although you might think it’s cool to loft your bed and put a seating area underneath, it’s not as fun as when your loft fails and that cool couch you just bought is crushed. Chances are your RA has already lived in your dorm, and he/she probably has a few tricks up their sleeve to maximize your set-up.

So there you go, a fool-proof guide to moving in to your spanking new dorm room. But remember, if you only follow one of these steps, then who cares! College is about experimentation and finding out what makes you tick, so if you want to carry up to flat screen TV one-handed, then by all means go for it! But just so you know, most residence buildings don’t offer freshman stupidity insurance.

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