Archive for November, 2013
It’s fall, which means there are some unpleasant chores that need to be accomplished – namely raking leaves and cleaning out the gutters. Get your kids to deal with the leaves and handle the gutters yourself as it involves climbing up and down a ladder.
Why do we need to clean out the gutters? Leaves and other debris can build up in the gutters, clogging the downspouts. This can lead to water damage on your roof. Water pouring over the gutters can end up leaking inside your home and into your foundation.
Clean your gutters while standing firmly on a ladder. Use one bucket for gutter debris and one for tools. Use wire hooks to attach each bucket to the ladder. Clean large debris with a trowel first. Using a hose flush the gutter starting at the opposite end of the downspout. If the water doesn’t drain, check the downspout to see if it is clogged and clean as necessary.
If there is still any standing water in the gutter after it has been flushed it may not be sloped correctly. Do not ignore this problem. If the gutter doesn’t slope enough, detach the hangers and adjust the gutter to drain properly and then reattach. If you don’t feel comfortable doing that, call a professional.
This is also the time to inspect gutter sections for damage and missing parts, repair any gutter leaks and apply gutter touch up paint. You may even want to repaint all of the gutters.
While cleaning out the gutters does take some time and elbow grease, it is necessary for the health of your home.
Glass shelves are a versatile storage option for the bathroom. Glass shelves can be hung throughout the bathroom. In smaller spaces, like a bathroom, the glass will take up less visual space than a wood or painted shelf.
Glass shelves virtually disappear into the wall behind them. If you use a floating shelf design like in this bathroom, the shelf will blend in with whatever is behind it. This allows your beautiful backsplash to be uninterrupted by the shelf. This is important when you have an intricate pattern like a mosaic or border.
Tempered glass is always a good idea in a bathroom for a shelf or a shower door. Tempered glass will not shatter into shards, which can be dangerous in a bathroom with its tile or wood floor. If you have a glass shower surround, glass shelving in the room can unify the design.
Glass shelves can be hung above the toilet as well as above the vanity. You can vary the depth of the shelf depending on its use and placement in the bathroom. Thicker shelves can be used to store extra toilet paper, jars of Qtips and cotton balls, or even extra washcloths and hand towels in neat rolls. Smaller shelves can hold toothbrushes and toothpaste.
No matter the material you choose for shelves in the bathroom, make sure you secure them to the wall with the proper screws for your wall type. Going into a stud is always a good idea when hanging a shelf that will hold any weight.
There are so many already aired holiday ads, and the stores have had their winter holiday aisles up since just after Labor Day. Retailers certainly won’t let us forget that the holidays are almost upon us. Our email inboxes are already full of coupons for holiday cards and ideas for holiday meals. So, have you made your appointment for your family holiday photo yet? Are YOU ready for the holidays?
Without putting the horse before the cart, here is a checklist of items you can do now so that you are not overwhelmed as the holiday season arrives.
- Get out your holiday recipes. Check your pantry to make sure you have what you need so you don’t have to run to the store in the midst of holiday food prep.
- Plan your Thanksgiving meal. Order your turkey, if that’s what’s on the menu. Your butcher will thank you for not waiting until the last minute.
- Also plan your holiday baking. You can easily make breads and cookies now and freeze them for future use.
- Buy containers for freezer meals, holiday gifts and baked goods. The stores are full of holiday themed disposable ware.
- Take stock of your china, holiday tablecloths, serving pieces and stemware. If you need additional items you have plenty of time to look for sales.
- Review your address book. Update any changes and count how many holiday cards you need to order. It’s also not too early to start writing your holiday letter.
- Make your gift list and plan your budget. Look through your wrapping supplies and see if you need extra tissue paper, ribbons and bows.
- Make travel arrangements if you will be visiting family out of town. Service your car so that it is ready for the trek to Grandma’s house.
- If you are hosting family, check your supply of extra linens, towels and throw blankets. Schedule carpet cleaning, window washing and a professional house cleaning so that your home is sparkling.
- And finally, don’t forget to plan for a haircut, and a mani/pedi so that you start the holiday season relaxed and looking great.
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Start first with your vacuum. You can use your vacuum to dust your walls, ceilings and baseboards. One downside – if you don’t have a HEPA filter on your vacuum you may end up spewing dust back in the air.
A feather duster is another good tool. Use a feather duster to dust bookshelves without having to move everything off. Just be careful to replace your feather duster if any of the feathers break, as this may cause scratching of surfaces.
A lambs wool duster is also good at getting in small and irregular spaces. This tool tends to stir up less dust than a feather duster, but you do have to make sure to wash it periodically.
Microfiber cloths do a great job of dusting without stirring up dust. The cloths can hold quite a bit of dust and won’t scratch your furniture. They are not great, however, for dusting up high or for dusting irregular surfaces.
Electrostatic cloths are another option. They won’t stir up dust and come in disposable options so that no cleaning in-between dusting is needed. They vary in lengths and sizes and some even come with poles so you can dust up high. The main con to electrostatic dust cloths is that they are more expensive as they are not reusable.
Should you use oils or polishes? Oils and polishes can enhance the look of your wood furniture and they will help with dusting fine surfaces, however, overuse or improper use can cause buildup or cause clouding of your furniture.
Compressed air is the best way to dust electronics. It is also great to use for surfaces where cloths may snag or in small spaces where tools aren’t practical.
Do you have a bathtub? Try replacing it with a claw foot tub. The new ones have been given an update and a modern spin to make this classic look fashionable.
Faucets are going high tech. Install a hands-free action-sensor model.
Think luxury. Leather vanities with stainless steel tops were featured a recent design show. You can even customize the leather color.
Jetted tubs are out. Now you “need” a hydrotherapy tub. VibrAcoustic transducers broadcast sound waves through the water to relax and calm the body. Unlike jets, the transducers don’t interrupt the surface of the water, since they’re found below the bathtub’s shell. Who knew?
If you really want to spoil yourself you can add a shower that allows you to control the precise temperature and water pressure you want. You can even start your shower right from your cozy bed with your shower remote control.
Add the finishing touches to your updated bathroom with a patterned backsplash – think herringbone. Pair that with black Italian marble countertops and flooring and a metallic sink.
When it comes to lighting, combine pretty with practical. Sconces on either side of your mirror are good lighting for your face. Put pot lights in the ceiling and add a statement chandelier.
There you have it, design ideas to turn your bathroom into a relaxing sanctuary, a get-away from the world and a place to pamper yourself. Because after all, don’t we all need that?