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ABC of organising any space

Friday, June 20th, 2008

For many people getting and staying organized seems next to impossible, and sometimes completely overwhelming. A cluttered home or workspace causes unnecessary stress with wasted time looking for lost items, late fees due to misplaced and forgotten bills, and what about all those piles in the garage just nagging to be dealt with.

Here is the good news - Anyone can learn organizing skills, and those basic skills will apply to any area or space that needs organizing.

I have a simple seven-step process that I apply to almost any space that I am organizingPrioritize.

1. Decide on your priorities - What is most important to you?

2. Visualize your ideal version of the space you want to organize. Keep that dream of the end results in your mind - not the job of getting there! This is also the time to consider what systems you might need to put in place to easily keep the space in order.

3. Empty - Whether it is a junk drawer, your closet, the garage, desk drawers - no matter what the space is, you need to start by emptying it so you can start with a clean slate. In some large projects you may have to work in sections, so you would empty only the section that you are working on for that day.

4. Sorting Stage 1 - Group like things together. This allows you to see what you have and makes the decisions about what to keep and what to get rid of easier.

5. Sorting Stage 2 - Now that you can see exactly what you have, create sub categories such as, Keep in this space, Keep somewhere else, Toss / Shred / Recycle, and Donate / Sell.

6. Return ONLY those items that belong in that particular space, keeping like things together. Now that you have the volume of stuff pared down, you can decide on what, if any storage accessories and/or containers you may need.

7. Dispose of the other piles right away. Find appropriate “homes” for the items that you want to keep, that belong somewhere else. If you have a large project that you are doing in sections, you may want to wait until the end to make the donations. Keep them all together in the garage, or somewhere out of the way, and have all of it picked up at the end of the project. Get the toss pile out to the garbage before it turns into another pile of clutter!

These steps tend to overlap each other a bit and, naturally, each job is a little different, but this basic process will help to clarify and simplify where to start, then what to do next.

Tips for stylish bathrooms

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008
by Sue

For most people, the bathroom is more than just a functional room now days. Many people find it to be a place of relaxation and even a stylish focal point of the home. Today there are a variety of luxurious amenities that you can add to your bathroom, including marble flooring, wonderful whirlpool tubs, and even granite counters. If you use your bathroom for relaxation and enjoyment, then you may want to consider adding some touches of luxury to the bathroom when you remodel so you can enjoy the bathroom and use it for a place to unwind. So, here are a few tips that will help you to add some luxury to any bathroom.

Colorful Candles

Colorful candles are a great luxurious addition to your bathroom. You can pick out colors that match your bathroom and find some of your favorite scents. They will no doubt make the entire bathroom smell great. However, you can also use them when you’re taking a bath. Simply light them up and enjoy the beautiful scent and the romantic glow while you are enjoying a nice, warm bath in the evenings.

Add Some Music

Music while you’re in the tub is a great idea, and it is easy to do this if you add a CD player or a radio to your bathroom. This way you can listen to your favorite CD or to the radio while you are enjoying a soothing bath. You can purchase a free standing CD player or radio, or you may even want to have one custom installed so you can have a wonderful music experience while you are having a good time in your bath.

Plush Towels

Of course for a touch of luxury, the right towels are a must as well. Go with some high quality towels that are thick and plush so you can wrap up in them when you get out of the bathtub. They are great to use, and they add a decorative element to the bathroom as well.

Towel Warmers

A towel warmer is an excellent addition to any bathroom and when you’re remodeling you may want to have one added. They are usually quite inexpensive and they warm up your towels for you for a truly luxurious experience. When you get out of the shower, you’ll then have a towel that is nice a warm for you to enjoy.

Whirlpool Tubs

Many people love the idea of soaking in a whirlpool tub, and this is a great way that you can add some luxury to your bathroom. No doubt you’ll enjoy relaxing in the bath tub with the whirlpool jets gently massaging your entire body. This is definitely the ultimate way for you to relax and enjoy yourself in the tub.

Life can be hectic and stressful, and your bathroom may be a great place to unwind and get rid of the stress of the day. So, consider these ideas to make your bathroom a place of luxury and relaxation. No doubt you’ll enjoy these luxurious amenities each and every day.

Building bathrooms for elderly people? Read this…

Monday, June 16th, 2008

If you have an elderly person in your family, it can be a bit scary to think about them alone in their bathroom. This is where many accidents take place for elderly people; however, there are things that you can do to make the bathroom a place that is safer for them. If you want to make the bathroom of your elderly loved one a place that is more easily accessible and safe, then here are some tips that will help you with this altering pursuit.

Make Room for a Wheelchair

One of the first things you need to do if you are remodeling a bathroom for an elderly person is to make sure that there is plenty of room for a wheel chair to get around in this bathroom. While they may not need a wheelchair right now, you never know when they may end up needing one, so it is best to go ahead and make it easily accessible by wheelchair.

Go with a Walk in Tub

A walk in tub can definitely be a great choice for elderly people. In fact, about 50% of accidents that occur in bathrooms occur in the bath tub. Just getting a walk in tub can really be a huge help to older people. They make it easy for them by offering a door that they walk through, instead of stepping into a tub. Also, these tubs include a nice seat that they can sit on to make it easier too. So, these are great additions that will make it easy for them to bathe and keep themselves clean without having to worry about the difficulties of dealing with a traditional tub.

Make sure there are plenty of Grab Bars

You should be sure to install grab bars throughout the bathroom in a variety of different places. If you have the tub, then install them nearby, and if you go with a walk in shower option, make sure that there are grab bars on the inside of the shower. You should also have grab bars near the toilet as well, since they may need help getting up or sitting down.

Install a Low Sink for Handicap Use

If they happen to be in a wheelchair, then you’ll need to be sure that they can use the sink. This means you need a lower sink that a wheelchair can get under. Make sure that you make the sink easily accessible, even if they are in a wheelchair.

Make Sure the Floors are all Slip ProofSlip-Proof Flooring

The floors should be made slip proof throughout the entire bathroom to help keep your loved one safe as well. Since water often gets on the floor in the bathroom, it is easy to slip and fall. However, a slip proof floor can help to keep this from happening

Tips to grow Orchid

Monday, June 9th, 2008
by Sck

The best orchid growing tip that I heard was to be selective in the sort of orchid I picked according to where I lived. Growing orchids isn’t super easy (although it isn’t super difficult either) and they can be a little more delicate than you may have been told. They do however have very specific conditions which if set properly will mean they really flourish and provide unparalleled beauty. Also, despite their delicateness, orchids are very versatile too. Following are some orchid growing tips you will definitely want to follow to get the most out of these beautiful flowers.

Orchids are definitely not plants that you simply leave to the elements while many orchids do manage in nature without human intervention. The truth of the matter is that most orchids require a significant amount of care and tending. Of course those who are truly passionate about their orchids are more than willing to take all the time they need in order to learn the best possible way in which to care for these beautiful blooms.

There are many facets common to all orchids but at the same time there is no standard solution. Each plant will require something a little different when it comes down to growing them effectively. It’s important to do a little research before you select your plant so you can get a few more orchid growing tips (this article will give you a lot).

Orchids like humidity in the air and really excel when growing in this sort of environment. A good growing tip is to use humidity trays and keep your orchids on that. To save some money you can even make your own by using a tray covered in pebbles which are kept moist or have a little water under them. I do not recommend misting the petals of your orchid, this can harm their growth and is not a good tip. Instead buy some humidity trays or make your own.

The media in your pot is also very important. Pete moss, fir bark and even charcoal are great fertilizers for orchids and should be changed fairly regularly to keep nutrients fresh. Keep a good level of fertilizer in your orchid pt will ensure the bloom are as beautiful as possible. Once the bloom has fallen, cut at the lower part of the leaves and not at the elbows. This will help the orchid grow next time.

Another of the best orchid growing tips is to give your plant light. Most orchids like light, but not too much, behind blinds is a good position in the home and try to limit it to around 4 hours per day.

The best tip when it comes to growing orchids is to take the time to learn about the specific variety you are planning to grow. There are more than 30,000 species of orchids not including all the hybrids that are available. Each species will have a few idiosyncrasies of its very own and you will need to learn the likes and dislikes of your chosen variety and cater to its every whim for some time in order to receive the maximum performance and beauty from your plant.

Before buying a home

Monday, June 9th, 2008

Are You Considering Buying a Home? Buying a home is an important decision to undertake. When buying a home to achieve success there is a requirement of a few key home buying elements stated for you in this check list guide.

Check List Guide

Home Exterior

Landscaping Grading>> Does the ground around the homes foundation slope away from the house?

>> Make sure the water does not pond in swales. To check, water the areas around the home with a hose, if possible around the homes exterior.

>> Are there signs of erosion?

>> Is large shrubbery placed at least 2-3 feet from the foundation of the home?

Roof and Gutters of the Home You Are Considering Buying

>> Are the shingles flat and tight as you look up at the home?

>> Is the flashing (Metal where roof meets home) secured?

>> Do the gutters, downspouts and splash blocks direct water away from the home?

The Homes Exterior Appearance

>> Are the windows and doors sealed and protected by weather-stripping?

(This prevents water from entering the home)

>> Are the door and window’s trim and fittings tight? Check for cracks as you check each exterior door on the home you are considering buying?

>> Does the painting of the trim cover the surface and trim smoothly as each door is checked?

>> Has landscaping been installed according to the terms of your homes contract?

Doors and Windows (Home Buying Check List)

>> Are all doors and windows sealed?

>> Do windows and doors open and close well?

>> Does any glass need replacement? Cracks or loose glass?

Checking Home Finishes (Painting and Varnishing)

>> Is the painting satisfactory? Check all rooms, closets and stairways of the home you are considering buying keeping in mind furniture locations and that closets are filled with clothes.

>> Are there spots missed by the painter needing touch up?

>> Is all trim and molding installed through the house?


>> Is the carpet tight to walls with nice seams?

>> Are there any ridges or seam gaps in vinyl tile or linoleum?

>> Are the wooden floors properly finished?

Appearance is the main factor when buying a home.

Are there a few defects? When buying the home and the price is right, consider over looking minor items.

The Homes Appliances, Fixtures, and Surfaces

>> Do your appliances work properly? Check each appliance of the home you are considering buying and each and every one of the appliances functions.

>> Are the appliances the color and model you ordered?

>> Check the faucets and plumbing fixtures. Does each one work properly including toilets and showers?

>> Check electrical fixtures and outlets.

>> Do the homes heating, cooling and water heating units operate properly? Test them to make sure.

>> Does the home have a fireplace? Do the draft and damper work properly?

>> Are there nicks, scratches, cracks or burns on surfaces that need attention of the home you are buying?

>> Does the doorbell work? Remember to also test the intercom system, garage door opener and optional items if included with the home.

Basement and Attic Check List for Buying Homes

>> Are there indications of leaks or dampness?

>> Significant cracking of floors or homes foundation walls?

>> Defects in the basement of the homes exposed components like floor joists, I-beams, support columns, insulation, heating ducts, plumbing, electrical …?

NOTE: Being strong enough to ask questions and understand the process when buying a home if very important to your home buying success!

Certificate of Occupancy Check List

>> Has your local municipality signed off on your house?

Some problems may not be readily apparent during the homes walk-through. A professional home inspector might miss a few problems. Most house warranties cover problems that are the result of faulty workmanship. However, home warranties usually exclude problems that result from owner neglect or improper maintenance.

Thank you for reading! I hope you found this home buying check list guide as useful. I personally sincerely wish you the best and Home Buying Success!

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