Tips for Staying Stress Free this Holiday Season

Posted by Tara on

To help keep you in the holiday spirit and keep your stress level at a minimum we have some excellent tips to share.

Photo Credit - breathelhc.org

Photo Credit – breathelhc.org


Get some sun and fresh air. Being outside, taking a hike or even sitting by a large window on a sunny day helps stimulate the production of feel-good serotonin and helps relieve stress. A simple walk or run also will help clear your mind of your worries.

Spray or rub something citrus on your shirt. Citrus has been found to boost feelings of well-being and alleviate stress by increasing levels of norepinephrine (a hormone that affects your mood). You could use some type of citrus hand sanitizer or lotion as well. Read More

How to Make Your New ‘House’ into Your ‘Home’

Posted by Tara on

Photo Credit - Swamplot.com

Photo Credit – Swamplot.com

Moving into a new home makes everything seem new and refreshing, but it still feels kind of strange, like it isn’t yours yet. We want to help you turn your new house in your home!

The first and most important thing you need to do is clean from top to bottom. You can hire a professional cleaner to take care of this, or if you want to save some money then you can do a deep clean on your own! Get rid of the old resident’s smell (maybe they smoked, or burned food a lot) and their germs; a great place to start is the washer and dryer. Read More

How to Pack Artwork for Shipping

Posted by Tara on

Photo Credit - weshipbellingham.com

Photo Credit – weshipbellingham.com

Shipping artwork all starts with the preparations. Before shipping your art, you will have to pack it—you will need to pick up a flat pack or print pad, packing tape and acid free tissue paper (enough to cover both the front and the back).

Once you have your supplies ready, you will need to pack your art. Keep in mind that you don’t ever want to lift prints or canvases by the corners. You should slide a piece of cardboard underneath the artwork and carry it by the cardboard covering, not the art itself. If you need to carry the art for any reason then make sure that you use acid free tissue paper or photography gloves while handling it.

Next, add two to three layers of cardboard on the top and bottom to prevent the art from bending. Tape around the outside of the cardboard – be sure not to tape any part of the artwork. Read More

Painting Kitchen Cabinets to Make Then Look Like New

Posted by Tara on

Photo Credit - MyHomeIdeas.com

Photo Credit – MyHomeIdeas.com

All you will need is some cleaner, sandpaper, paintbrush and elbow grease. What you don’t need is a lot of money, just some time and a little creativity.

First you will need to prep your cabinets for painting. This means you will need to clean, sand and prime every part of your cabinets otherwise the paint will not stick properly.

Cleaning is an essential part of the process; the area that you want to spend the most time on. Over time cabinets collect a large amount of grease and grime, both from hands as well drips and splashes from cooking. You can remove the first layer of grime with elbow grease, but for the second layer, try a TSP substitute or a degreaser. And after the grease has been removed, you can remove the final layer with 100-grit sandpaper which not only removes grease it also will help the paint stick. Read More

The Best Timing Tips for Buying & Selling a House

Posted by Tara on

While these tips may seem random they are very helpful, so take a look to see if these tips can help you with your buying and selling process.

When is the best month of the year to make an offer on a house?

We found that the best time of the year to make an offer on a home is in January. Sellers are not getting many offers when it is cold, snowy and wet outside and many people’s bank accounts are low due to the holidays (and their credit cards are high). For many, January is a time of financial insecurity, so most sellers are willing to take lower offers to help get them out of debt. Read More

Coping with Home Buying Stress

Posted by Tara on

houseOnce you make the decision to ride the roller coaster that is buying a home, you need to be prepared both mentally and financially. Before you speak with a mortgage advisor take a look in the mirror. Write down your expenses and how much you are currently paying for your home. What will you feel comfortable paying each month and is it realistic? You need to remember that you don’t want to be house poor and living out of your means. After you come up with a monthly payment you think could work for you, then you should speak with a mortgage broker. They will tell you what you will be approved for, but keep in mind this is what the mortgage company is willing to lend you, not necessarily what you can or should afford. Read More

Bathroom Color Tips

Posted by Tara on

We want to share with you some tips to help you design and create your perfect bathroom oasis.

bathroom

The first step is to go to your local paint store and pick up a color wheel. A color wheel will help you select a color scheme by giving you a feel for what colors go together. For instance, on a color wheel you will notice that blue and green are next to each other, which means they are analogous colors. Meanwhile, purple and yellow are across from each other, making them complimentary colors. Use the wheel to help you choose three colors that work well with each other.

When you select three colors for your room try to include one neutral color, one rich color and one accent color. Then use the 70/20/10 distribution rule to choose what color goes where; this means use the lightest color for 70% of the room (i.e. the paint), the second lightest for 20% and the boldest for 10%.

You might wonder how to incorporate a color in only 10% of your bathroom. Choosing bath towels, sink accents, photos, or even in a piece of furniture are all ways to add in that “pop” of color. Read More

Tips for Creating a Moving Kit

Posted by Tara on

Let’s start with the essentials.

Photo Credit - Absorbant.rssing.com

Photo Credit – Absorbant.rssing.com

Paper and Pen – Having these handy will help you make a list of things you need to do, like what you need to purchase, reminders, etc. If you move into an apartment you should write down things you need to tell your landlord (i.e. the toilet runs constantly, holes in the wall, or stains on the carpet).
Camera – Take pictures of any damage in the apartment before you move in. This is also a great idea for decorating purposes! Take pictures of the colors in your apartment– like the color the walls and carpet—so you can match your decorations to them when you go to the store. Of course, you could also take these photos on your phone, which might make it easier when you are out shopping. Read More

What an Appraiser is Looking for in Your Home

Posted by Tara on

Here are a few tips to help increase the equity in your home and boost the return on your investment when it comes time to sell.

Photo Credit - Budgeting.thenest.com

Photo Credit – Budgeting.thenest.com


Structure

The appraiser will start outside by looking at the structure, the foundation, the roof and the siding of your home to determine the quality and the condition. The appraiser is looking for cracks, leaks and any type of damage to the structure. To help sustain the value of your home, you should have any damage to the structure fixed before they arrive.

Interior

To get a clear picture of what the appraiser is looking for on the inside of your home, you need to first imagine it without all of your furniture. Then you can take a look at the material and quality of the walls, the ceiling, flooring, windows and doors. We recommend spending the extra couple of dollars to repair and update these interior items. Read More

Happy Halloween

Posted by Tara on

Pumpkin Rice Krispie Treats

These are a very cute idea for kids, especially kids school Halloween parties. Give them a try and you can even let your kids help!
The recipe is from yummyhealthyeasy.com
PumpkinRiceKrispie
Ingredients

3 Tbsp. butter
½ tsp. vanilla extract
red & yellow food coloring or orange gel coloring
5-1/2 cups mini marshmallows
6 cups crispy rice cereal
mini tootsie rolls
andy for decorations, M&M’s, candy corn, etc.

Instructions
1.In a large saucepan, melt and slightly brown butter on medium heat. Add vanilla extract and marshmallows. Stir until marshmallows are completely melted. Add food coloring until desired orange color is reached. Add cereal and stir until completely combined. Turn off heat and let sit for a few minutes, until cool enough to handle. Read More

1 2 3 38