Tag Archives: Caring For Our Community

20 Barnard Crt. Ajax

Open House October 8, 2017 2-4 pm

$525,000

Quiet Family Court

You’ve got to see this one in person! Full of designer touches. The good life is certain in this 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath home with finished basement, hardwood floors on top level, and walk-out from kitchen to covered patio overlooking huge back yard. Enjoy carefree living with low maintenance exterior, updated windows, furnace, newer shingles and electrical panel. Enjoy the convenience of an large eat-in kitchen that has been recently updated with top of the line appliances, quartz counter-top, under the counter lighting and over sized center island with B/I dishwasher, cupboards and seating for 5. All this for only $525,000 .

 

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Weed Away!

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In our quest for a perfect, green lawn that more resembles AstroTurf than anything Mother Nature could create, we may find ourselves blasting gallons of weed killer onto our lawns throughout the summer. Instead of filling our lawns — and our lungs — with noxious chemicals, give these natural weed-eliminating methods a chance.

Crowd them out. Over-seed your grass to not only create a thick, luscious landscape, but also to ensure there’s no room for unwanted, weedy invaders.

Smother them. While not practical for weeds scattered throughout your lawn, mulch is a must for keeping weeds at bay around your flowers and vegetable beds. Keep the mulch about two inches deep to eliminate the light and air that weeds need to thrive.

Scald them. If you can boil water, you can kill weeds. For an economical and effective weed killer, carefully pour boiling water onto young weeds popping out of cracks on sidewalks and driveways.

Try vinegar and soap. Mix four cups vinegar with two teaspoons of dish soap in a spray bottle and spray weeds only (avoid grass).

Use elbow grease. Weed the garden regularly, pulling up weeds manually before they go to seed.

And if you can’t beat ’em, eat ’em! Your next plate of nutritious greens can be as close as your backyard. Young, tender dandelion and chicory leaves can be enjoyed raw, in a salad, or steamed or stir-fried as a cooked side dish. Some people even make tea with the leaves and roots. Those pesky weeds include impressive amounts of nutrients and vitamins — just be sure you know what you’re picking and that you wash them well!

The Psychology of Clean

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Does mess equal stress? An article in Psychology Today* says “yes!” But the good news is, clutter is one of the easiest life stressors to fix.

Clutter both at home and at work can stress us out on a number of different levels, making it difficult to relax, both physically and mentally. It signals to our brains that our work is never done, and creates feelings of guilt and embarrassment. Clutter also creates a feeling of frustration by preventing us from quickly locating things we need, from keys to paperwork. There’s simply nothing good about mess, so here are some tips to help you tackle it.

    • Address one area at a time, and finish de-cluttering and cleaning that one area before moving onto the next. This creates a sense of accomplishment as you fully complete one task or one room at a time.
    • When it comes to getting organized, setting up more shelves and storage areas isn’t always the answer. Downsize your belongings first by getting rid of things you don’t use or need – donate or toss as necessary, then create designated areas for the rest, ideally in closed spaces such as drawers and cabinets. Simply re-organizing things on open shelves doesn’t take care of “mess stress” as your clutter is still in sight, creating visual stimuli that your mind continuously has to process.
  • Once you get your clutter under control, keep it that way by getting in the habit — making a resolute effort every time — of putting things back where you got them. It sounds simple, but it’s a repetitive process that needs to be continuously reinforced before it becomes routine.

www.psychologytoday.com/blog/high-octanewomen/ 201203/why-mess-causes-stress-8- reasons-8-remedies

 

Stay Connected to Your Priorities

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The expression “cutting the cord” was, in the past, used to describe a young person’s departure from their parental home to the world of independence and self-sufficiency. In today’s households, cutting the cord now more often refers to the practice of canceling cable TV subscriptions and replacing them with low-cost Internet video streaming subscription services or other free video platforms. Because of that and the widespread reliance on smartphones, good wireless coverage has now rocketed to the top of the list of necessities for home-hunters.

A recent survey reveals that when moving to a new community, today’s home buyer puts more of a premium on reliable at-home wireless service than they do on home prices and decent commute times*. In fact, the survey showed that while having good hospitals in the community was key for 77 percent of respondents, reliable wireless service followed right after that on a homeowner’s list of new home priorities.

Breaking it down, 67 percent of survey respondents ranked reliable wireless service as a “must have” when considering a home, followed by good schools at 65 percent, reasonable home prices at 60 percent and good commuting times at 41 percent. It’s important to note the value of wireless service in today’s homes, with half of today’s households now wireless-only and the number of people who access the Internet using only their smartphones continuing to rise.

Good connections have never been as important as in today’s home-hunting market! That’s why it important to be connected with TheMashTeam.

Green Cleaning Tip: A Greener Cleaner!

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Why spend money on commercial cleaning products when equally effective, more natural cleaning supplies are probably already in your kitchen cupboard?

1. For a multi-purpose, everyday spray cleaner that’s effective, economical and safe around kids and pets, simply mix one part white vinegar with nine parts water in a spray bottle or bucket.

2. Create a streak-free shine with your own window cleaner. Pour one cup rubbing alcohol plus one tablespoon white vinegar into a spray bottle, spray on windows and wipe away with paper towels or yesterday’s newspaper.

3. A box of baking soda goes far in the cleaning world. Some suggestions: Use it on a damp sponge to clean sinks and scrub BBQ grates, freshen upholstered furniture and carpets by sprinkling it all over before vacuuming, and add a cup to your laundry to brighten clothes.

 and to make your home healthier try these tips. Contact me for the recipes. 

4. Use woolen Balls in your dryer instead of dryer sheets.

5. Make your own Non-Toxic Powder Laundry Detergent. All you need is baking soda, washing soda, Borax, Epsom Salts, Sunlight Bar Soap, Oxi-Clean and essential oils such as lavender or lemon.

6. Make your own deodorant.

7. Make your own face cream.

8. Make Your Own Lip Balm.

 

 

Is Your Home Affecting Your Health?

Your home is a safe haven. But, there are ways your home can damage your health.

A healthy home is a happy home. What do we mean? Well, did you know about these seven home hazards that could be affecting your health? Not to worry, our friends at Home Advisor tackle how to identify them as well as how to fix them.

#1 Mold, fungus and mildew

Aside from their smell and unsightly nature, mold, fungus and mildew can pose a serious threat to your health. If you notice any signs of these hazards (especially mold and mildew), have them removed immediately.

#2 Water-borne pollutants

Public water supplies are generally kept to a very high standard. But, it’s impossible to eliminate all water contaminants. If there is a failure in any part of your purification system, your water supply could contain dangerous pollutants. Replace your purification system to ensure your water is clean.

#3 Carbon monoxide

In sufficient quantities, carbon monoxide can kill. Carbon monoxide is difficult to detect because of its odorless and colorless nature. Address any carbon monoxide problems by ventilating your impacted space. For a long-term solution, consider installing a carbon monoxide detector.

#4 Lead

Lead causes memory loss, muscular issues and dementia. Make sure to check your paint and plumbing for lead if your home was built before 1975. If you find lead in your home, have it removed immediately.

#5 Home chemicals

Most of us have potentially harmful chemicals in our homes. These include:

  • Detergents
  • Cleaning agents
  • Bleach
  • Nail polish
  • Pesticides

Most of these substances can be replaced by safer, organic products. If not, keep your toxic chemicals out of reach of children and pets.

#6 Dust

Dust can irritate your respiratory tract. Clean any obvious dust using a damp cloth or an electrostatic wipe. Regularly vacuum curtains, upholstery and carpets. Make sure you use a HEPA filter in your vacuum cleaner. Less efficient filters allow too much dust to escape back into a room.

#7 Dampness and leaks

Moisture encourages the growth of molds and other harmful microorganisms. Eliminate any leaks in your plumbing or roofing to avoid mildew and mold problems.

Conclusion

If you feel unwell in your home, you may be suffering from a home hazard. Tackle any health problems in your home to stay healthy.

The Smartest Home Improvements for 2017

Why not add home improvements to your 2017 resolutions?

Here are a few tasks to kick off in 2017.

Replace Your Garage Door
Your garage door is one of the first things visitors and potential buyers will notice about your home. That’s why it’s important to ensure that yours is in great shape. Consider installing a new garage door if yours is damaged or showing its age.

Insulated garage doors will boost the energy savings of your home. Your garage is an open pocket of air attached to your home. As it gets colder outside, an uninsulated garage will trap cold air against your home, forcing you to spend more on energy bills. Insulated models will keep cold air out and help you eliminate extra spending on utilities.

Install Smart Locks
Smart locks allow you to control and monitor the security of your home through your smart phone. The price of smart locks will vary depending on the features. Most models come with Bluetooth connectivity and remote access.

Get a Nest Thermostat
Learning thermostats will improve the environment in your home and save you money. Smart thermostats learn your heating and cooling habits and automatically adjust your HVAC to meet your needs. You can install a smart thermostat yourself or with the help of a pro.

Complete a Minor Kitchen Remodel
Your kitchen is a busy place. Everyone loves to gather around food and enjoy good conversation while keeping the host or hostess company. If you’re dealing with a cramped kitchen, consider a minor kitchen remodel to help open up your space.

Worried about the cost of a remodel? A kitchen remodel will return 83 percent of its cost at the time of resale, making it one of the better ways to spend your money in 2017.

Update Your Bathroom
Your bathrooms are another great location for home improvements. You don’t have to overhaul the entire room to recoup the cost of your upgrades. Head to your local home improvement store and pick up any of the following items to boost the appearance of your bathrooms:

● New faucet and handles
● Modern mirrors
● New towel racks
● Floating shelves

Channel Your Inner Handyman
You can also tackle some home improvements yourself. It’s as simple as focusing on what’s already in your home rather than what it lacks. Go through your home and check for the following:

● Leaks in the shower
● Leaks in the sink
● Knicks in the drywall

Andrea Davis is the editor at HomeAdvisor, which connects homeowners with home improvement professionals in their area for free. Connect with Andrea on Google+

The Sweetest Way to Kick Off Valentine’s Day at Home

We found the best recipes for breakfast on Valentine’s Day

In case you haven’t noticed yet, Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday this year. Yuck, a Tuesday. If you are anything like me then going out for a nice dinner (or worse cooking one) after a long day at work sounds anything but romantic. That’s why this year I am flipping the script and focusing on kicking the day off with something sweet and what better way to do than with breakfast at my favorite place in the world…my home.

Last year, 11 Sweet Breakfast in Bed Ideas was one of our most popular posts in February so I decided to write a version 2.0. This year’s theme is all about Red Velvet and these recipes are sure to make breakfast on Valentine’s Day, or any other day for that matter, extra sweet. Enjoy!

Red Velvet Waffles | Go Eat & Repeat | Recipe Here

3 Words… Cream Cheese Glaze (mmmm)

Red Velvet French Toast | Cafe Delites | Recipe Here

What I love most about this picture is the fact that Karina added a few raspberries to the plate. In humble my opinion the fruit on this dish basically cancels out the rest of the calories.

red velvet pancakes valentines day breakfast

Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls | No. 2 Pencil | Recipe Here

Dessert for breakfast…yes please!
red velvet breakfast cinnamon rolls

Red Velvet Crepes | Six Sister’s Stuff | Recipe Here

Close your eyes, take a bite and imagine yourself vacationing in Paris.

Red velvet crepe

Red Velvet Pancakes | DAN 330 | Recipe Here

Short stack or full…whichever you choose will  be a delight!

red velvet pancakes

Red Velvet Donuts | Homemade Hooplah | Recipe Here

While most donuts are fried these are actually baked, so don’t feel bad when you reach for seconds.

red velvet donuts

Red Velvet Nutella Hearts | I Love to Cook | Recipe Here

N U T E L L A!!! Need I say more?!

Red Velvet “Skinny” Shake | Mom on Time Out | Recipe Here

You and your honey can satisfy your sweet tooth with this recipe for 2!

A Quiet Start to the New Year

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People tend to hibernate at home more at this time of year, often to recharge after a hectic end to the previous year. Aim for true peace, quiet and indoor tranquility with these noise-busting tips.

Close the door on squeaky door and cupboard hinges. Most squeaks can be quashed by spraying WD-40 onto the hinges and moving the door or cupboard door back and forth to work in the lubricant.

Silence your steps. Broke curfew? Planning a midnight fridge raid? Make like a ninja on de-squeaked wooden floors, courtesy of a good sprinkling of talcum powder or cornstarch. Force the powder into the floorboards to reduce the friction where the pieces of wood rub together.

Mute the mayhem. While today’s fans, dishwashers and other appliances are much quieter than they used to be, full at-home relaxation requires the muting of as many other sounds as possible. To this end, choose padded carpeting over bare floors, sound-blocking curtains and solid — not hollow core — doors. If replacing doors isn’t an option, at least apply weatherstripping or soundproofing tape around each indoor door to provide a sound barrier/seal. For a more major soundproofing effort, consider sound-blocking ceiling materials that help to block noise traveling from one floor to the next.

Have a silent night. A squeaky bed can keep you, your partner and — if you have someone living downstairs — other people awake with your every turn. If you have a metal bed frame, sometimes simply removing the mattress and tightening the frame’s screws and bolts will remedy the problem.

You can also take apart the bed frame and rub some candle wax or paraffin over the contact surfaces of the joints, or grease with WD-40 to get rid of the friction and help silence the squeaks. If screws are no longer a tight fit, take them out and wrap plumber’s tape around each one, and consider adding new washers too before screwing them back in.

If the squeaks are the result of the metal corners of your box spring interacting with the metal bed frame, you can try cushioning the spaces with old socks, t-shirts or towels.

After all that, if your bed continues to squeak you may want to try placing a sheet of plywood under your mattress to act as a buffer between the mattress and box spring. Plywood isn’t expensive, and most big box stores will cut the wood to the size of your box spring if you give them the dimensions, so it’s worth a try before taking on the expense of a new bed.

What’s that Noise in the Attic?

PhotoIf the weather outside is frightful, you may currently find yourself in hibernation mode. And if you’re not used to spending a lot of time indoors you may start to notice sounds you’ve never noticed before, including scurrying and scratching noises from inside your roof or walls.

The pitter-patter of little feet above your head could suggest that rodents have taken shelter inside your attic. Taking a peek inside your attic, evidence of an infestation can include chewed wiring, gnawed insulation, compromised wood, and droppings. Don’t wait another minute to call in a professional pest control expert to confirm what kind of invader you’re dealing with, keeping in mind that mice, squirrels and raccoons can make noises much greater than their size would suggest, especially when any noise is amplified by an unfinished attic space.

Once you confirm critters are inside your attic as opposed to on the outside of your house — perhaps using your roof as a super highway — you’ll want the pest control people to trap and remove them before they have a chance to do real damage. What you definitely don’t want to do is put poison out, as if an animal dies up in your attic you’ll find yourself dealing with a situation that literally stinks.