Blog

Spring Cleaning: Decluttering Your Home

02/28/2019

Sure, you can watch Marie Kondo’s Tidying Up on Netflix for inspiration, but we’ve got your spring cleaning task list right here. Leave winter behind and start a new day with these three must-do decluttering and organizational tips.

Clean Out Messy Junk Drawers:

We all have them—junk drawers that contain miscellaneous items like pens, screwdrivers, old credit cards, bobby pins, batteries, calculators, and more stuff that we throw in there on a daily basis. Well, it’s time to get down and dirty people and clean out the junk to get ready for more junk to come in the spring! Start by emptying it out into a box or garbage bag. Then, keep what you want and throw away the rest. Suck up all the dust and dirt with your vacuum hose or dust buster, and wipe the drawer clean with disinfectant. Put the contents you want to keep back into the drawer in an organized manner. Repurpose old plastic containers, mugs or non-slip dish drawer liners to keep things from moving around.

Declutter Closets:

What better time to donate than now? Filter clothes, purses, jewelry and accessories like belts, shoes and scarves into three piles.

  • The first pile is DONATE. Get rid of anything with no meaningful value or that you haven’t worn or used in 6 months. Even things that don’t fit anymore should go. Don’t use this time as an excuse to say, “ I’ll keep these as my goal jeans and lose weight!” or “I’ll just keep these as a back up.” If you aren’t using or wearing them now, toss them.
  • The second pile is SEASONAL. If you wear and use it, but it’s for a different season, fold or organize them nicely in a box or bag and stash them in storage for now. Don’t get them out until the season begins.
  • The third pile is KEEP. Keep anything you love and has value. If you have several of the same items ( like over 10 of the same white T’s or tanks), cut it down to just three or four. FInally, take your DONATE items to Goodwill and wipe your hands clean.  Voila! Your closet is now clean and organized!

Deep clean what you use the most!

This is the perfect time to clean household items you use all the time and might not get to clean on a regular basis. Clean out your sink with soap and lemons, or toss the rinds into your disposal to freshen it up. Revive your shower curtain by throwing it in the washer or spraying and wiping it down with a yummy smelling disinfectant. Lastly, wipe down your remotes, computers and cell phones with lysol hand wipes or other safe cleaners and get rid of those nasty germs that build up every day from all the usage.

Happy cleaning everyone!

Huddle Up Indoors

2/21/2019

Saying outside is cold is an understatement. It’s more than freezing! So, instead of braving the snow, why not stay inside the comfort of your own home and have fun with your family? Here are some of the things you can do indoors and enjoy each other’s company.

Play House

Remember when you used to play house? Let your kids experience the same thing! Pick up huge boxes from your attic and stack them together to make a house. Take out those colored markers, pencils, paint, and brush and turn your kids into tiny artists. Let them put their phones down and show them that playing in real life can also be fun.

Wrestling

Do you want to blow off some steam? Maybe your kids want it, too? Clear out your living room and make sure the corners are lined with pillows so they don’t get bruised. To add more fun, let them wear your old t-shirts and stuff them with pillows. For sure, you’ll be laughing like a banshee during the match.

Blanket Fort

Take out all your blankets and build a blanket fort with your kids. Tell them your party is on a quest to protect the princess from the huge and vicious dragon invading your fort. Whatever story you can think of, it’s nice to involve them in world-building games because it unleashes their imagination and creativity.

Reading Corner

If all else fails, you can always go to books. Choose a comfortable corner in your home and let everyone read their favorite book. Enjoy the silence while having each other’s company. When you’re all done reading, you can share each other’s insights on your chosen books. Not only will you know more, but your kids get to learn how to communicate and share their own ideas as well.

Did you enjoy our tips? How did it go? Perhaps you have other indoor activities in mind. Comment below and share it with us!

Redecorate your Living Room

02/19/2019

Spring is blooming, and it’s that time to think about revitalizing a space in your home to reflect a fresh new vibe. This week, we’re focusing on the living room—one of the most forgotten rooms in a home. Get ready to entertain again in your formal living room with these new home redecorating tips!

Accessorize with Purpose

Whether it’s art, throw pillows or furniture, choose pieces that match your type of personality and make a statement.  Love books? Create a collection of your favorite classics on a bookshelf or side table with fun bookends. Need a pop of color? Add throw blankets and pillows that create a fresh, fun vibe. Go big or go home?  Search for that perfect statement piece, from sculptures to furniture, and find something that your family and guests can talk about (and that you want to look at every day!).

Add Life with Flowers and Plants

Fake or living, plants, and flower arrangements can make or break a room. If you’re having guests over, bouquets of fresh flowers with pops of vivid color are always inviting. But, having potted plants in the nooks and corners of a room can add warmth and a cozy feeling, not to mention reflect any style you want. From tropical to bamboo, a houseplant is the perfect living room addition.

Keep Color Simple

Subtle color goes a long way when it comes to the overall feel of your living room. From paint to accents, keep it simple with soft and soothing paint hues that adds warmth. We love off-white, pale grey-blue or light gray with white trim for living room wall colors. Then, your accents with pops of color, as well as the natural light will really stand out on its own.

Don’t ignore your living room decor anymore—spice it up this Spring with a fresh new vibe!

Valentine’s Day at Home

02/14/2019

It’s chilly outside. While some people spend their Valentine’s at a restaurant or not at all if they are single, warm up the air and spend yours with your loved ones at home. How do you do that? Here are some ways.

Watch a romantic movie

Inflate your air bed or scatter your throw pillows in the living room. Huddle up and watch classic romcoms together. Make a couple of microwave popcorn packs and share them around while watching your chosen romcom film. Wouldn’t that warm your heart up?

Play videogames

Set up your gaming consul in the living room and play with your family or friends. The games could range from RPG to point-and-shoot. Whatever videogame you choose, it’s sure to make you and your loved ones enjoy each other’s company. Just make sure no joysticks get destroyed in the process.

Enjoy a hot beverage with them

Sit together and enjoy each other’s company. Whether it’s in silence or with laughter, enjoy the company with a cup of hot cocoa or coffee on hand at the porch or by the fireplace.

Spa Night

Wouldn’t it be fun to spend a spa night with your hubby and kids? It may sound like kids and spa don’t go together but it can work. Put on face masks and pamper each other. Let the kids paint their dad’s nails with glitters. Just have a blast and relax.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how much money you’ve spent on Valentine’s Day. What matters is who you spent it with. Share moments together and make memories you can look back to in the future.

What do you think of our list? Have you thought of other Valentine’s Day activities? Comment below and share it with us!

Be Your Own Pancake Chef!

02/12/2019

Pancakes are best served when hot. But a fluffy and thick stack may not be enough to satisfy your breakfast or snack. With some tips on how to make the most sumptuous and delectable pancakes, you’ll get to add more to that fluffy stack and prepare it for tasty goodness!

Prepare your ingredients 

With complete ingredients, you won’t have to worry about what would lack in taste, texture, and look. Your pancake is set to perfection once done when you have these ingredients:

  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Milk
  • Melted Butter
  • One Egg
  • Vanilla Extract

Although you may use the more convenient and ready-to-mix packaged products, some who prefer the more traditional method in preparing pancakes may gather and use the ingredients mentioned above. However, achieving that perfect taste, texture, and look does not rely on the ingredients alone. Most of the times, it requires your skill. This leads to the next tip.

Be Thorough

Now that you have your ingredients, all you need to do is to be precise in cooking your pancakes. You will need to pour the exact amount of flour into a bowl, sift sugar, baking powder, and salt into the content, and then add milk, melted butter, and vanilla extract before stirring it until it mixes.

According to Stay At Home Chef, these are ingredients and their exact measurement you would need:

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 ¼ cups milk
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons of melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

This takes about five minutes in preparing. While stirring the contents, you may pre-heat and oil a pan or a griddle where you will pour the mixed contents. Try to achieve its circular shape before flipping it with a spatula. You will know once it’s done when the batter turns dry, its texture rises, or and its color changes from white to pale flesh.

Keep on pouring portions of the batter, and your stack of pancakes will grow.

Be Your Own Chef 

So, now that you’ve cooked the basics, would you eat bare pancakes without adding flavor? If you’re more comfortable with that, you may. But you may want to try something new.

Be creative with your pancakes. If you wish to add chocolate chips into the batter, you’ll have a pancake delight that looks similar to a giant chocolate-chip cookie. Or you may add fresh strawberries on top and glazed it with syrup. Strawberries may be among the options for delectable toppings. Why not try blueberries, nuts, or whipped cream? Either way, your taste best suits you.

Pancakes are generally among the most favored treats across America. Whether they serve as your meals or in-between snacks, pancakes can be styled with tastes the suit your liking. Try making one today and be your own chef!

3 Reasons to Remodel Your Kitchen

02/07/2019

The kitchen is the heart of your home. It’s where you cook the most scrumptious meals for your family and friends. It’s a place where everyone can come together and enjoy making meals  for everyone.

Much like any room in your home, it can reach a point when you  need to renovate it. Opting to do a kitchen remodel is a major decision. Here are three reasons why you should do a remodel.

 

Style Revamp

Does your kitchen have the charms of a cottage home? Want to overhaul and make it sleek and modern? Whatever theme you decide on, reach trusted home improvement contractors that serve your area and collaborate with them. Home improvement contractors are trained and experienced to do the remodeling from planning to construction. Share your vision and see it come to life!

 

Kitchen Upgrades

Check your kitchen features and see if they still serve their purpose. Your kitchen cabinets may be too small to store your stuff. Perhaps you need more stove burners now that you’re cooking a lot more than what you’re used to. When you notice capacity issues, it’s time to make upgrades.

 

Change in Lifestyle

Your kitchen’s current layout served its purpose for its previous owner, but it may not be the case for you. Perhaps your family tradition includes huddling in the kitchen for breakfast without formally sitting at the dining table. Get a breakfast nook and enjoy the more intimate feel. Make your kitchen suit your family’s rhythm.

Whatever your reasons are, kitchen remodeling can immensely change your home’s ambiance and upgrade its interior. Have you thought of other reasons to remodel your kitchen? Would you like to share it with us? Let us know and comment below!

Remembering Black History

02/05/2019

 

Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Barack Obama, Rosa Parks, Beyonce, Louis Armstrong, Kendrick Lamar – these are just some of the few well-known African-Americans whose social, political, and economic contributions have impacted not just the United States, but the entire world. Over a century ago, African-Americans weren’t celebrated and recognized this way before. Back then, it was assumed that African-Americans had little to no history at all besides slavery.

Who changed it?

And then came Carter Woodson. Carter Woodson (born December 19, 1875 – died April 3, 1950) was an African-American historian, author, and journalist who saw the need for research into the neglected African-American past. His education from the University of Chicago and Harvard University convinced him that the history of African-Americans and other cultures were being ignored or misrepresented in American history. He wasn’t the only one who noticed this. On September 9, 1915, Woodson and his peers founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASALH) in Chicago.

The Association is dedicated to the promotion, research, preservation, interpretation, and information dissemination of Black life, history, and culture to the global community. It created avenues for African-American scholars to do research and publication such as the Journal of Negro History and the Negro History Bulletin. Both of which garnered popular appeal.

How did Black History Month Happen?

It started out when the ASALH and Carter Woodson announced the 2nd week of February as “Negro History Week”. This week was picked because it fell on the birthdays of two of the most iconic figures in African-American history – Abraham Lincoln (February 12) who issued the Emancipation Proclamation and Frederick Douglass (February 14) who was an African-American social reformer, abolitionist, author, orator, and statesman.

In 1976, the celebration expanded into the entire month of February. Now, Black History Month has support from all over the country as Americans with varying ethnic and social backgrounds have conversations about the black experience. The ASALH sees this elevation as one of the most important keys in furthering Woodson’s legacy.

Black History 2019: Black Migrations

This year opens with the theme “Black Migrations.”  The ASALH believes that migration represents one of the most important aspects of America’s past. It seeks to educate America and the global community about the arrival of Africans in the Virginia Colony. It shows the story of the resilience of the African-American family, their contributions to America, and most of all, African-American perseverance over four centuries.

This month, spend time with your child and remember the African-American people and their contribution to society. Whether it’s watching Push or reading a poem by Langston Hughes, their achievements and hardships have endured throughout the years. Do you have activities to celebrate Black History month you’d like to share? Share it with us and comment below!

Pet Care for Winter

01/31/2019

Your furry friends cannot tolerate the harsh winter season. It is essential to protect them against the cold temperature as much as you would secure yourself.  Keep them warm and comfortable during the cold season by adjusting your pet care routine!

Pay attention to their diet

Some animals consume more during winter since they burn more energy to stay warm. Others would prepare to hibernate. Observe your pets’ eating habits to provide the right amount of nourishment. Don’t let your dog lick ice to stay hydrated. Replenish their water bowl whenever necessary.

Avoid skin irritation

Your furry friends are prone to skin and paw irritations due to the chemicals used to clear the snow. Paws can also be irritated from the cold temperature outside then warm temperature indoors. Use petroleum jelly on your paw pads or paw protectant to prevent any redness or damage.

Minimize outdoor time

Don’t let your dogs play outside for more extended period since they are susceptible to frostbite. When you bring them out, make sure they are on a leash. Vehicular accidents are riskier during winter.  A good rule of thumb is to take your pet outside when the sun shines. Walk your dog on late morning or early afternoon.

Groom your pet

Your pets need proper grooming to insulate themselves properly. Limit their bath time since it can reduce their fur’s natural essential oil. Moisturize them properly.

Block off heating source

It is natural for your pet to find sources of heat during winter. Protect them from potential electrical accidents by installing baseboard radiator. Consider making your fireplace pet-friendly too.

Secure their bed

Don’t let your pet sleep on the cold floor. Keep them warm and snug with a pet bed, pillow or blanket. Consider using heated pet beds and secure them in a warm spot, off the cold floor.

Harsh winter weather can put your furry friends at risk. Protect them and keep them happy with these pet care tips!

 

Indoor Houseplants for Winter

01/29/2019

Indoor houseplants give your space a vibrant and cozy vibe, but your home can be uninviting for some plants during a bleak, winter season. Fortunately, we gathered a list of low-maintenance indoor houseplants that can withstand the harsh season and help you beat the winter blues:

Lavender
Do you have trouble sleeping or are you constantly agitated? Try bringing lavender into your home! This lovely flower has a relaxing and calming effect and has been frequently used as an herb to treat fatigue and insomnia. Make sure that your lavender gets enough light by placing it near your window.  You can also mimic the sunlight by exposing your lavender to fluorescent light.


Aloe Vera
Aloes thrives during the winter and blooms beautifully. This common houseplant is best known for soothing burns or skin itches. Spider aloe vera is an interesting choice due to its unique texture and succulent spikes. Plant your aloe vera in well-drained, coarse soil. They should also be placed under bright light. Aloes don’t need much watering since they need dry soil.


Moth Orchid
Brighten up the winter season with this lovely flower. Regardless of its popularity, many still don’t know how to provide the right care for the orchids. Moth orchid is among the most loved orchids since they are the easiest to grow. It requires medium-low light and its flowers last for months. While it only blooms once a year, it can be encouraged to bloom twice.


Weeping Fig
Break away from the typical houseplant and try growing a weeping fig! This tree maintains its tree-like shape no matter their size which makes an excellent centerpiece. Make your fig look unique and stunning by braiding or twisting its pliable trunk. The weeping fig needs a bright room and requires moist soil. However, don’t let it sit in water or the leaves will fall.


Peace lily
Packed with air-purifying properties, this elegant houseplant complements your interior. The peace lily needs warmer temperature and indirect sunlight. They need evenly moist, well-drained soil and at least 55 degrees of heat. You need to re-pot them in larger containers if they wilt every three days.  


Even in the dull winter, these houseplants will surely brighten your day and add more life to your home.

5 Ts of Home Re-Decorating for Winter 2019

01/24/2019

How do you spruce up your home and make it cozier for those long winter days? The answer may be simpler than you think. With the right decoration, patterns, and textures, a few tweaks can pep up your home and keep the winter blues at bay!  

Think of a theme

A theme is crucial for your home interior update. Do you want to follow the contemporary route? How about the rustic vibe? Ever considered a minimalist style? A good rule of thumb is to complement your interior with the existing exterior.

Tackle one room at a time

A major redecoration sounds overwhelming. Come up a list of rooms that you need to prioritize. Consider decorating the biggest rooms first. This will provide you a ballpark on the possible cost that you will have to spend for the other rooms. You’ll also have more focus redecorating knowing that you’ve set your priorities straight.

Take it to Pinterest

Still clueless what themes and styles to go for? Create an account in Pinterest. This social media is a mine of wealth for DIY projects such as home designing and re-decorating. You can create a board per room and try to pin the design and styles that catch your attention. Consider your Pinterest board a mood board for your interior.

Throw in Some Greens

Skip the vases and fresh flowers. Winter is an excellent time to fill your home with vibrantly beautiful house plants. Having a greenhouse inside your home is an amazing idea if you have a wide indoor space. If your area is limited, go for tiny plants such as bonsai. Just don’t forget to give your flowers and plants some TLC.

Transform your space with a fresh coat of paint

Repainting your home is one of the cheapest ways to update your interior. You can paint your room in Living Coral to pattern your space with Pantone’s Color of the Year or go for bold, vibrant colors!

Decorating your home doesn’t have to be a major DIY project. These minor tweaks and updates can give your home a fresh, brand new vibe.