Chicago’s the type of city where you have options for nearly anything you could imagine. If you feel like hanging out inside a dark and quiet lounge instead of a loud, raucous bar, the city will provide you with dozens of places you’ll love. If you’d rather enjoy a pricey plate instead of a homemade meal, you can rest assured that any chef in the Windy City would be glad to make your entree.
When it comes to apartments, there are just about as many options as anything else you could think of. One great debate seems to be more present than any other: should you choose a building with a doorman or one without?
Like most things in life, there are pros and cons to each option. The building that’s best for you may not be a great fit for your friends or family members. It’s a very personal choice—one that’s best made after evaluating all the pluses and minuses available in either case.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of living in a building in Chicago that has a doorman.
Pros of Having a Doorman in Chicago
We’ll start with the positive features of doorman-guarded buildings.
Great doormen pay attention to everything. That means they’re watching who comes into and out of the building, who might be loitering on the property, and which faces look like they don’t belong. The people who are approved to go into a doorman building have been vetted by the professional person who knows how to keep his (or her) building as safe as possible.
When you’re away at work all day, it can be hard to plan your schedule around picking up packages. If you live in a building without a doorman, you might have to rely on your neighbors to keep an eye out for your boxes when they arrive. Even then, you’re leaving a bit of your package-delivery success to luck.
Doormen eliminate this unwanted shuffling of the clock. They’re there to get your packages and secure them until you’re able to pick them up. And, what if you have someone coming over to clean your place, such as a maid service, while you’re away? Don’t worry! Doormen do that duty, too. They’ll let your housekeepers in and make sure no one’s there who’s not on your list.
It’s so nice to have someone open the door for you when you have your hands full, but doormen don’t care if you’ve got anything in your hands or not. They provide the intangible service of ensuring the people in their building feel special. Having someone open the door for you makes you feel like you’re a celebrity, no matter how un-famous you are.
Doormen greet you with a kind smile and wish you a great evening when you leave. Many of them offer concierge services that’ll enable you to make the most of your city with insider tips and special reservations.
Trudging those last few steps after you’ve already hiked a few blocks with groceries in-tow can be excruciating. Coming back from a trip where you’re juggling tons of luggage poses another awkward situation in terms of getting from here to there.
There are plenty of ways people need assistance every day, and a great doorman will do his best to mitigate stressful situations when they arrive at his building. He’ll help you lug that luggage into the building and will take it upstairs for you if he’s able. He’ll open the door when you have your hands filled with groceries, and he’ll probably suggest a good recipe, too.
Whether you simply need help navigating the lobby, or your shopping excursion has taken you past the limits of carrying bags by yourself, your doorman will save the day.
Cons of Having a Doorman in Chicago
Now, let’s look at some of the reasons people choose to live in non-doorman buildings in Chicago.
1. Lack of Privacy
Doormen don’t necessarily care what you’re doing or who you’re doing it with, but they are watching. By default, their job is to no one—and nothing— comes into the building without authorized access. That means they’re paying attention to the guests you’re bringing onto the property and the packages they’re signing in your name.
If you’re a stickler for a quiet life where nobody knows what you’re doing or who you’re hanging out with, a doorman building is probably not your best option.
Doormen aren’t volunteers. They’re professionals, and most of them take their jobs very seriously. As such, they expect to be paid the type of wage worthy of someone who looks after the safety and well-being of an entire building.
While you won’t see an invoice from your doorman directly, you will incur the expenses by way of rent that’s higher than that of no-doorman buildings in Chicago. For many people, this is the trade-off cost between saving money and maybe having some extra living space or paying a higher monthly fee in favor of a bit of luxury.
If you’d prefer to forego higher rent in favor of a bit of savings in your pocket each month, you might be better off looking for a building that doesn’t employ a doorman.
3. Expense (Continued)
If you live in a doorman building, your base costs are covered by your rent or the monthly fees you pay your property manager or HOA. The expenses don’t stop there, however. A large portion of doormen’s income is derived from tips, particularly around the holidays. Although you’re certainly not required to tip your doorman, you can be certain that he is keeping tabs on the residents who have failed to show their appreciation monetarily.
If you don’t tip your doorman, he may accidentally forget to open the door for you when it’s pouring rain outside, or perhaps he won’t be there to sign for our package. Is it professional? No. Does it happen? Absolutely. It’s best to factor in the cost of a tip every now and then to ensure you’ll be getting the service you’re ultimately paying for if you choose a doorman building.
Chitchat can be a bonus for people who like to interact with a familiar face every day, but for people who’d prefer to run through the lobby and get into their homes without interacting with another human being, doorman buildings can create uncomfortable situations. By nature, doormen tend to be pretty social people who care about their residents and want to hear about their lives. If this scenario makes you cringe, you’re probably better off looking for a place that doesn’t have an attendant.
Don’t rule out individual apartments until you see them for yourself. Be sure to write down a list of pros and cons as you go exploring. If not having a doorman is a deal-breaker, tell your Realtor upfront. However, if you’re open to exploring the possibilities that could be found in buildings that don’t employ doormen, set some time aside to explore both options. You’ll probably know which place is right for you as soon as you walk into the building.
Molds can be very sneaky, and because they hide in cracks, as well as other invisible places, most of us are unaware of their existence. If they were harmless little creatures, probably none of us would really put their time into them. I mean, there’s a lot more to think about than mold. But apparently, mold in the house is not only a problem for people with asthma and allergies. Irrespective of who you are, or where you live, you need to reduce the amount of mold you are breathing in. Mold exposure can irritate your eyes, skin, throat, and lungs. A report from 2007 also stated that scientists have found a direct correlation between a high presence of mold in the household and depression. The state of your home greatly influences your mood. Think of when you have clutter lying all over, how does it feel? Additionally, molds are just a nuisance because they can live off any organic matter; this includes your leather jacket.
They can be found both indoors and outdoors. Mold can get into your home through open windows, doors, and even heat and air conditioning systems. Mostly they flourish in humid places. If you smell a musty odor in your home, it’s probably time for a cleanup. Since they are almost imperceptible for you to be searching for them clueless, we have come up with a list of places that mold could be hiding in your home.
The environment in the chimney equals an ideal place for the growth of mold. By now we know molds can grow anywhere as long as there are moisture and food. If moisture gets in your chimney (which can happen easily) maybe through damaged masonry or any other damaged component, it can make a perfect home for mold. Since chimneys are dormant most time of the year, the humidity causes a healthy amount of moisture that encourages the molds to multiply. If you are unable to see discoloration on your chimney’s wall, more often if mold is growing inside, the first indication will be a musty odor (that smell most of us relate to old-basement smell). To remove the mold, try calling in for service because it is easier that way without risking your health. Then check if there are moisture intrusion problems and get them fixed to take care of the dampness.
Washing Machine and Dishwasher
As surprising as it may be, mold can be found in the same place as both a washing machine and dishwasher. Mostly, they are found in the gasket around the door of the dishwasher and a front-loading washing machine. It often stays wet because the door is usually closed when not in use. This gives the molds the right environment to munch and multiply. To prevent this, wipe the gasket and the glass dry after any wash. If you notice molds are already there, simply run a hot water wash with some mild bleach-like chlorine. It will definitely kill any mold. Make sure both the machines are empty when you are at it.
Mold On Dishes
It might not come as a surprise if you see some molds grow on your dishes, especially if you are in the habit of leaving them dirty in the sink. You are creating an ideal environment for them with both moisture and food. Nevertheless, you will be shocked that you can also find mold in clean dishes if you give them enough time. Mostly for some, life just gets in the way and you find you ordered takeout for the whole week. In such situations, if you didn’t dry your dishes and placed them in the cabinet, you will be sure to get molds. If you do, use vinegar and warm water to clean the utensils. Thereafter wipe the cabinets with the same and completely dry the dishes as you arrange them back. A moldy dishwasher can also be a cause of quick mold growth on your utensils. Therefore clean it too.
Window Sashes and Sills
Discovering molds in your window can be a regular problem if your windows have leakage or condensation is an issue to your home. On most homes, molds begin to grow from the bottom of the window at the joint between the glass and window sash frame. As soon as you spot one, you need to get rid of it because mold seen is hardly compared to the amount that is really there. Before you begin cleaning away the mold, you want to make sure you don’t ingest dangerous spores. Therefore, find a dust mask and gloves to wear. Also, ensure there is proper ventilation by opening doors and windows where spores can go instead of being trapped inside the house. On the other hand, you don’t have to treat mold from your windows when you can prevent them. You can achieve this by reducing the amount of condensation on your windows. It can be done by setting the air conditioner thermostat above 70 degrees. It is also helpful to allow proper airflow by ensuring ceiling vents are open at all times.
The air conditioner mold should be removed as soon as possible. This is because they can be easily spread throughout the house every time you turn it on. While some homeowners prefer to deal with a household problem on their own (all you need is bleach, clean sponge or towel, and hot water), It’s probably better to call in a professional. It can be pretty difficult to access all parts of the air conditioner, but the professionals have the necessary equipment without exposing you to health risks. Definitely, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and if you can prevent the growth of mold in the first place that would be better. Keeping the air conditioner duct-free from dust by regular cleaning will go a long way in preventing mold development.
The Bottom Line
In every problem, prevention is better than cure, therefore try keeping those moist places in your home as dry as possible and allowing the free flow of air. We are hoping you will now have an easier time finding and getting rid of those molds.
Things made out of plastic are very attractive and you find yourself buying them every time you head out for shopping. However, plastics take years and years to degrade hence being an environmental hazard. Not all plastics are recycled as well so it is better to avoid using these products not only for our environment but for our own personal well-being. It is possible to have a plastic-free home. You can get some of the products to replace the plastic or ways in which you can avoid plastic around your home.
1. Kid’s Toys
Most babies and toddlers love chewing or stuffing their mouths with toys. Plastic toys could have a harmful chemical which once consumed would cause harm to the body. Look for eco-friendly toys such as wooden toys that have more natural elements. They last longer too.
2. Food Containers
Replace your plastic containers with foods that are packed in cardboard or foil paper. Avoid microwaving food in plastic as the heat will only speed up the reaction of phthalates which can transfer into your food. Go for more reusable options like tins or food bags.
3. Food Storage
Always encourage your family to store food in the fridge using mason jars, glass bowls or even steel bowls. This will help in avoiding the trouble of having to wonder where to take your plastics for recycling and will ensure a clean environment in your home. Food stored in plastic tends to go bad faster than when stored in other containers. Many homes have plastic bottles or containers stuffed in one plastic bag around the kitchen which doesn’t quite bring a pleasing picture.
4. Shopping Bags
For a longer-lasting, washable and reusable bag, get one that is not plastic. You can also do your own DIY shopping bag out of canvas or a piece of cloth that you no longer use to make sizeable bags for the whole of your family to use on grocery shopping. Plastic bags are very dangerous especially when you have kids around. They could easily harm the child in terms of suffocation as the kids are playing around with it. If you really need to have a bag or two in the house, make sure you keep it as far away from your kids as possible.
5. Home Décor
Before deciding what interior décor to use in your home, ensure that you check its material with caution as not to get anything with plastic content in it. Be keen on things like flower pots, vases, and garden gnome among others. The chemicals contained in those plastics could easily harm your dog as he chews on them. Get ceramic products instead and if you like glass, be sure to keep them in a safe place out of reach of children or pets.
6. Door Stoppers
Get rubber made door stoppers for your baby’s room as plastic could easily crack when the door is banged and leave sharp pieces on the ground which could cut your baby. Go for stainless steel door handles as well as replacement of the plastic ones. Also, ensure the baby’s entire room is plastic-free. You could replace plastic drawers with wooden ones.
7. Water Bottles
Stainless steel water bottles are much better in terms of durability and safety. If you prefer a glass made water bottle, just use a silicone sleeve to help prevent breakage. Dispose of the glass bottle once you notice some cracks to avoid cuts. It is not advisable to store hot water in even the hardest plastics.
8. Phone Cases
This is one of the most important to avoid. Sometimes our phones overheat when we are charging it or when we overuse it. The heat on the phone will gradually transfer to the plastic case which, in a severe scenario might cause burns when in contact with your skin.
9. Disposable Cups
There are these cups that we love using especially when you have events like birthday parties. They are disposable yes, but how do you make sure you dispose of all of them well and are they recyclable? Instead of having such questions, it is better getting melamine cups and plates that can be washed and used again. This is the best idea for going green and it is also cost-effective since you won’t keep going back to the store every time you have an event.
10. Buy Beauty Products Stored in Plastic-Free Containers
Things like lotions, perfumes, lip balms and foundation mostly come in plastic packages. Try getting the ones that come in metal containers or cardboard jars. If you are good at DIY, you can make a homemade lotion out of organic ingredients.
11. Carry Your Own Tin for Take-out
If you love take-out or just carrying your leftovers, consider requesting your food joint to allow you to carry your own container instead of taking with you their disposable ones. This option is also best if you need to buy prepared food or meat at a store.
12. Return Containers for Re-Use
Having to put tomatoes or fruits in a reusable bag is not the best idea as they can get crushed. Instead, get your own container and empty your stuff inside them or just have a habit of returning the plastic containers once in a while to your local organic market or store to avoid piling them in your house
13. Get Live Plants
Want to have green around your house? Go for live plants instead of the plastic ones as they also bring in the fresh air in the house. If you can’t be able to take care of a live plant because you are too busy, go for trees made out of natural materials like recycled cardboard.
The Bottom Line
Those are just a few of the alternatives to the daily things we use around the house that need to be plastic-free. Other items are like combs, blow dryers, CDs, and DVDs. All these can be very dangerous especially when in contact with heat. It is better to get rid of all of them and decide to go green with eco-friendly products that will save our environment. Eventually, your home will be fully green with everything plastic-free.
So it’s another time of the year to celebrate not because the fall has arrived; although it could be a good reason too, basically because Easter is just around the corner. You can almost feel that Easter mood in the air and everyone is up and down sprucing up their space in readiness for the Easter decorations. One of the most creative and coolest ways to decorate is to do it yourself. It is so awesome and it allows you to explore new ideas. So here are a few ideas on how to decorate using the Easter egg.
Easter Egg at the Door
Decorating for Easter is not as easy as Christmas so for this kind of decoration, you could start at the door. Make it known that you are also celebrating Easter and what a better way to do that than the door décor. So how do you do this? Well, you could start with taking something with a handle such as an old rusty watering can or even a woven pouch to act as a flower vase. Then add some eggshells made of pastels sprinkled with seasoned flowers like lilies. That is a perfect reception gesture and everyone that comes to your door will always feel welcome.
Easter Table for the Kids
Easter is another time for you to bond with your kids and what a better way to splash them with goodies than arranging an Easter table for them. A creative way is to take pieces of paper, A3 in size and draw egg shapes on them then let your kids do the decoration on them. Later you can use the pieces of paper as a mat on the table. This is a good gesture of bringing the Easter mood to the table and allows kids to take part.
Copper Coated Eggs at the Center
It’s interesting yet a bit precarious that metal can be used as décor. When it comes to Easter, the ceramic eggs coated with copper make up a very shiny and cool centerpiece. Your living room will look ten times luxurious with such decorations, especially if you put all the eggs in a clear glass trifle dish with a splash of green around it, could be mint leaves or even mosses, just perfect.
Eggshells as Vessels
This may come as a surprise but it might be one of the most genius and creative ideas of decoration. Taking the eggshells and filling them with some soil and plants is simply brilliant. How do you do this? Simple, just take an egg (extra-large or jumbo size) then using a sharp knife tap one end of the egg then tip it over to spill its contents. After emptying the shell rinse it with water carefully. Then remove some soil around the planted roots, take the roots with the left soil and place in the shell, then add some soil on top and voila, you have an egg planter. You could try out different planters just for decorative purposes and put them on one tray to get the perfect look.
The Perfect Egg Nest
The perfect way to play around with paper and to put it to good use. Play around with paper crepe and a disposable paper plate to create the perfect nest to put your eggs in. You can also use paper cut-outs or stripped ribbons (although ribbon is more preferred) of different patterns by wrapping them around boiled eggs using an adhesive to create a good décor. This is more simple and easy to make the centerpiece.
Easter Pails Centerpiece
Surprisingly these Easter pails can do the job perhaps even better than baskets. Well yes in case you were string trying to wrap your mind around this, pails can also function as baskets when it comes to Easter. It is quite simple actually; just paint, draw or even stamp a perfect shape on the pail with a good design and perfect color and add some dust-wood or Easter grass to the pail. Make sure you fill the pail almost to the brim to be able to hold the eggs, then put the eggs on top. The eggs could have some decorations too, just have some nice pattern design on paper then cut them out and wrap them around the eggs with something to adhere to a decoupage medium. The Easter pails could act as perfect Easter give away and serve as a perfect centerpiece as well.
Garland of Eggs
Give your staircase, table or mantel that Easter looks by draping it with an egg-threaded garland. How do you do this? Simple, just make holes on both ends of an egg and thread through the holes using a flexible jewelry cord or a thin ribbon with a needle attached to either of them. You could do this for approximately 20 eggs to connect them and create an adorable garland. The eggs could be dyed with your preferred color shade to make it brighter. Well, in case you wondering how to create holes in an egg without damaging it then here is how. Just create small holes on both ends of an egg using a push pin, then using a wooden skewer push through the hole to expand it and break the egg yolk. Then blow out the yolk from the larger hole to push it through the other hole. If this seems impossible to you, just purchase a plastic egg from those craft stores and make reusable garlands.
In conclusion, Easter is not Easter without Easter bunnies and Easter eggs. Getting off a cold season and into the fall cannot be done any better than this. You could start by using Easter eggs to give your home that Easter look is just one of the best ways to celebrate. The eggs could be plastic or real, as long as they are well dyed and decorated. In any household, the Easter egg will always mark as the centerpiece, make good use of that by creating yours, do it better on your own.
In as much as we would want to be healthy and eat right for prolonged life, there are some unnoticeable items that are always around us that are very toxic to our bodies and are probably the cause of our health problems no matter how much we check our diet. In order for us to be cautious of them, we need to be aware of each and everything we bring in our homes. A few of them are listed below.
1. Deodorants and Perfumes
Some of these fragrances that we use are not as friendly as the odor they have. Most of them are made up of chemicals like acetone and methylene that may cause nausea and irritation to the eyes and throat. You would think that you are just sick but the cause of your illness lies in that perfume that you love so dearly. Seek advice from your beauty consultant on more natural alternatives to toxic perfumes and deodorants.
2. Toilet Disinfectants and Bleaching Agents
Most of these products contain very harmful chemicals for them to work effectively. For instance like the smell of the bleach is very irritating to the nose and you have to wear gloves while handling it since it can cause burns when in contact with your skin. The best alternative here is to have your DIY cleaning agents. You could mix baking soda with a little vinegar to scrub your toilet bowls and sink with it.
3. Air Fresheners
In as much as we want our home smelling fresh, air fresheners can be really toxic to our environment especially if not well ventilated. You could get some really fresh flowers or plants around your home as an alternative. Another idea is to get a fabric softener and add a little baking soda in it then spray your house with it. It is less polluting to your environment. Ensure your house is well ventilated after spraying.
4. Bug Spray
It is best to try and avoid those insecticides in your house. Try cleaning your house and tidying up your kitchen to avoid bugs. In a severe case where you need to fumigate your house, it is best that you check into a hotel for a few days for the air to clear before coming back to clean your entire house just to make sure that there are no traces of the chemicals left.
5. Switches and Extension Cables
Always be checking out for loose wires or switches that have lost a screw or two. Ignoring such things can cause a major harm to your home like fires and shocks. Before you go to bed, counter check that all lights are off and that the water taps are tightly closed else you wake up in the morning to find water everywhere and when you step on the water you instantly get electrocuted because of the switches that were left on or unattended to.
6. Open Hair in The Kitchen
We all know that leaving your hair open around the kitchen is disgusting and unhygienic but it is also very dangerous. The products we use on our hair and the hair itself is highly flammable. Always have a hair net when in the kitchen just avoid harm to yourself.
7. Gas Cylinder
Be sure to check your gas knob when going out or as you go to bed. Ensure the knob is tight and check if the cylinder has any kind of crack that might cause leakage. Before you do anything in the morning, open all windows to let clean air in just as a health measure.
Burning candles in our homes especially when you want to have that inviting feeling can be harmful to your health. Most of these scented candles are made of paraffin which when lit emits some dangerous chemicals such as benzene. You can use those artificial flames from the store just to avoid any emergencies at home.
You could think of warming up your home during the winter by lighting up your fireplace. That could be a very bad idea especially if you are using charcoal. This is because charcoal emits carbon monoxide which has very slight symptoms but the effects are fatal. In some instances, inhaling too much carbon monoxide causes death.
10. Plastic Items
Avoid plastic containers, toys or water bottles around the house. They contain some elements like phthalate or are made out of PVC. Get an alternative to plastic or you could choose toys and plastic items that are labeled PVC free. Avoid plastic completely in the kitchen because they can cause quite a mess when in contact with fire and the smell of burnt plastic can also cause irritation of the nose.
11. Broken Glass
Always take a broken glass as a priority. Leave everything else and pick up the larger pieces carefully then seep the smaller pieces into a dustpan. You can then vacuum the area just to be sure that all the pieces are collected. Also, keep checking your glass utensils for any chip that could cut you as you are taking tea or water.
12. Loose Nails
On your free day, take your time to walk around the house and check carefully on your wall for any loose nails that might prick you or tear away your clothes. You could also think of replacing the nails with other safer alternatives from the store that are plastic-free.
The Bottom Line
The list is endless when it comes to anything that might cause harm to you and your family. Always be careful of anything around you and inquire about the contents of what you want to buy at the store just to make sure it doesn’t bring a long-term effect. Remember, staying healthy is one thing but living an accident-free life from the least expected things around your home is another. Have time to check around your house once in a while even for pests or tiny insects that come around your home which might be a danger to you.
You won’t even start guessing what Epsom salt can do to soothe your body, mind, and soul. It is one of those things that you should totally get as you do your shopping. You are going to know why in a moment. However, don’t confuse Epsom salt with the regular salt used at home, which is beneficial as well. Regular traditional salt is sodium-based while Epsom is magnesium-based. It is named after a bitter saline spring at Epsom in England. In actual sense, it is not salt but an occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. It has so many benefits that range from beauty to household and it can even get plenty done in the garden too.
It even gets better; studies have shown that magnesium can be readily directly be absorbed in the body through the skin. Just by that fact, the wonders that this salt can do to your life are countless. Your body will appreciate more magnesium and sulfate. For instance, magnesium helps in muscle and nerve function, prevents artery hardening. While sulfites help in improving the absorption of nutrients and help ease migraine headaches. Mark you; those are just the tip of the iceberg. Although it must be mentioned that Epsom salt is a potent laxative. Therefore, you should not take it internally without a doctor’s recommendation. Rather, it is best absorbed through the skin; better be safe than sorry. Here are some ways Epsom salt can totally transform your life.
1. Health Benefits
There are so many health benefits of using Epsom salt. Using it as part of your daily routine can add a lot of good to your life in a very effortless way. Here are some health benefits of using Epsom salt.
Relaxes the Body
Whenever you are stressed out, instead of draining the bottle and turning out more helpless and distressed, get yourself a cup of Epsom salt. All you have to do is take relaxing Epsom salt baths. The high magnesium content will make it an amazing relaxing soak. Simply add one cup of Epsom salt to your usual warm bath and soak for about 15 minutes (clearly, you can’t do it when you are late for work). For an added advantage of moisturizing your skin, you can add baby oil to the water. Did you know that stress drains the body of magnesium? When you soak, the skin absorbs the lost magnesium, hence helps to produce serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical in the brain. This creates a feeling of calm and relaxation. Bathing in Epsom water will literally make you feel better, look better and increase your energy level. Your Mondays just got better, thank me later
Yes, Epsom salt can be used to treat constipation. When taken internally, by the doctor’s instructions, Epsom can act as a detoxifying agent for colon cleansing. It acts as a laxative by increasing the level of water in the intestine, therefore, bringing temporary relief from constipation.
Improves Muscle and Nerve Function
The two components in the salt can help regulate electrolytes in the body, which ensures a proper function of nerves, muscles, and enzymes. Magnesium is a very important mineral in the body that serves as the main conductor of electric impulses in your body. By absorbing Magnesium reduces your chances of muscle and nerve failure.
You can a simple effective pedicure in the comfort of your home. Simply add Epsom salt to warm water and soak your feet. It will help relieve the symptoms of athlete’s foot and toenail fungus. The warm water and salt are able to also soothe the pain expressed if you get a sprain or bruise.
2. Beauty Benefits
Exfoliate Face and Body
Using Epsom salt is a simple way to exfoliate dead skin effortlessly. Sometimes, instead of expensive skin beauty products, all we need is to exfoliate our skin to look better. Did you also know that magnesium has the power to help firm the skin? Once in a week as you take your bath, you can take Epsom salt and some olive or baby oil and rub it smoothly on your wet skin. You will not only have good looking skin but also feel good too.
Blackheads can be such a nuisance, and you will be surprised at how easily Epsom salt can help with that. Take half a cup of boiled water and add one teaspoon of Epsom salt and three drops of iodine. Using a cotton ball, apply the mixture to the blackheads
Care For Feet
Our feet do a lot for us yet they are a very under-appreciated part of our bodies. If you have feet problems like a bad odor, rough skin, cracked heels or itching, simply soak your feet for 15 minutes in warm water mixed with Epsom salt. And you can also make magnesium feet scrub that will be a good step to having better feet.
3. Household Benefits
Cleaning Your Grout and Tile
Tiles look good when new and clean. They can become very unsightly when stained and dirty, especially the grout. If you want to clean them up without being too harsh, you can make an equal mixture of Epsom salt and dishwashing soap or detergent of your choice. Then scrub away the stain and dirt using a grout brush. Epsom can also be used to keep away slugs. After gardening or some rough work, your handwashing soap could appreciate some Epsom salt help in removing the dirt.
There’s a charm that comes with household plants. And don’t even get us talking about the health benefits. You can have healthier houseplants by boosting it with a little magnesium. Add Epsom salt as you water the plant. If you also grow roses, hands down roses love magnesium. Simply sprinkle a teaspoon of Epsom salt and watch your flowers blossom to glory.
Epsom salt can be found at your local grocery store, or if it lacks, there’s always the option of buying it online. The ones listed above are just a few of our favorites, but there’s so much more you can benefit from the salt.
It is very difficult for one to get their kids to do some chores or simple cleaning around the house without some frowning involved. The thought of entering your kid’s rooms is just tiring. Having to take a peek at their bathroom is another nightmare all by itself. However hard you think it is, it may turn out to be a walk in the park for you. No age is too young for them to start cleaning as long as you can communicate with them. Here are some very simple ways to help your kids learn how to clean your home.
It doesn’t have to be a serious ordeal.
Scolding your kids for them to do chores around the house will not help them at all. Punishing them using chores will make them hate those chores even more and in turn become rebellious. Explain to them why they have to do their chores and give them a hand as well. A good leader does not just sit around pointing out what is to be done, instead, he helps out to show that he is part of the team too.
Start your kids early.
Do not wait until your kids are teenagers so that they can start handling chores. Start with them when they are toddlers but with minimal work, as they are not strong enough to handle complicated work. You could even come up with a song for them as they are sweeping those crumbs into the dustpan. This will be fun to them and it will act as bonding time between you and them. It is not advisable that you let them work for long, as they will get bored and hate the whole experience.
Get some reward cards.
You don’t have to give tips every time your kids do chores but you could make it fun by leaving behind reward cards two to three times when they finish with their chores. Place the cards where they are visible and at the point of the end of the chore. For instance, you could hang one on your trash can outside for them to site it as they are throwing out the trash or sneak up on them as they are doing the dishes and place the card on the kitchen table. This will act as a form of encouragement for them.
Come up with a duty roster.
Just as you may have a menu for your meals, come up with a duty schedule for your whole family. Distribute the chores and divide them into daily activities. Do not overwhelm them with chores as they also have their schoolwork and playtime of their own. You could secure thirty minutes or one hour of their time for chores. Be sure to make that hour fun. As you assign the chores, make sure you don’t give the younger kids dangerous chores like cleaning the kitchen area and if you do, it should be under strict supervision to prevent accidents.
Do not be bossy about it.
There are many ways to kill a rat. Cleaning doesn’t have to be done your way. If your kid is to vacuum then wash the dishes later, do not insist on him to vacuum first then wash dishes later. Let him feel independent and choose what to begin with first. Agitating him in that way will lower his confidence or even get him angry. Assign the chores and only help if asked to since kids are different. Some children prefer doing the chores alone so give them their space to do it.
Set an example as a parent.
You cannot tell your kids to do chores whereas the same chores are difficult for you to do. Kids look up to their parents or guardians. If you are lazy, they will also be lazy. Imitation starts from when they are toddlers. You may be folding laundry and notice your daughter trying to hold her own too as she carefully observes what you are doing. Start with yourself and teach them the tradition of always cleaning after themselves. By doing so, you will not even have to assign them chores or force them to clean their rooms.
Appreciate their work.
Always have time to check on them as they work and give a cheer here and there. If at all you could be at work and come home an intact house with everything clean, show them some appreciation by praising their efforts. Make them their favorite meal or take them out for pizza. Do not do that frequently as it may imply that they will only be appreciated once they do chores. Even if you find a messy house, ask why before jumping on their necks to scold them for it
They don’t have to be perfect.
It takes time before perfecting something. You wouldn’t expect the dishes to be entirely clean after the first few washes from your child. Accept the fact that your dishes will have traces of grease, your bathroom will not be spotless and their beds will be halfway made. Kids learn as they grow and perfection is a learning process for them. Encourage them and you will notice them trying harder and harder. Encouragement acts as a motivator.
Start your kids with chores that do not require too many steps as they may get distracted along the way. Vacuuming sounds easy but for you to teach your kid how to put it on the vacuum and afterward put it off and dispose of the dirt from the vacuum bag would be very complicated for them. Switch the vacuum on for them and after they are done, help them get rid of the dirtbag. You can teach them the other steps after they get used to the first step and that is vacuuming.
All of us learned about chores from our parents or relatives and we are perfect because of their long patience. Study your child’s ability before handing them the chore. Do not assign the same chore to one of your children but instead interchange them after some time. Be sure to make it fun and accept mistakes. No one is perfect after all.
Since medieval times, fragrance has been a treasure in many societies. We all love having our households, not only smelling fresh but also sweet, with distinct unique aromas. In modern times, we have sprays and perfumes that impart the specific scents we want. However, they are not really natural and do not last long, typically not more than a day. Hence, it is crucial to know how to create a portion of organic fragrant potpourri to fill the air around your house.
Potpourri is made from a mixture of dried scented flowers and leaves whose combined aroma gives the pleasing, ‘oh so good’ smell. It is a nice, cost-effective and long-lasting solution to air your dwelling with nice smelling air. There are even recipes for potpourri that can ward off flies.
Ingredients for Your Potpourri
Scented flowers, petals or leaves
Fragrant barks, roots or woods
Fixatives – orris root, citrus fruit peels work best
You’ll also need:
Display container, especially glassware
Mixing and curing bowls, approximately three
A small hammer to pound the mixture.
The Dry Method
The dry method is the simplest one for making potpourri. The petals are collected and dried till crisp. The spices and fixatives are then ground together in a separate bowl into a fine powder mixture. The fixatives work to fix the scents away from the petals into the other mixture so the scent is more evident. Add some drops of essential oil to the dry plant matter. Then add the spice mixture to the oil mixture and mix again. Finally, add all the other dry ingredients into the same bowl and mix everything together in a bid to let out the scent.
After the agitation, close the bowl and keep the mixture in a cool, dark and dry place to cure for about four to eight weeks. Afterward, allow the aroma of the potpourri to waft across your dwelling.
The Wet Method
You only need partially dried petals for this procedure. Place a layer of partially dried petals and leaves in a jar. Proceed to sprinkle some salt. Then lay a layer of petals again and sprinkle some sugar, salt and a few drops of fragrant essential oil. Repeat this step until you fill the container.
You can then close the lid, then place in a cool, dark and dry place to allow the mixture to cure for about two months, after which you will be required to drain out the excess liquid. Add the fixatives, spices, and oils, mix the whole mixture then leave to cure again for a month.
The moist method produces potpourri that might not be pleasant-looking, but at the same time, it produces the strongest most intensive flavors of aroma. This type can last for very much longer than using the dry method.
Reviving Old or Non-Fragrant Potpourri
Add a few drops of essential oil – the oil acts to dissolve out any remaining fragrance so you can smell it more. It also energizes the mixture.
Mix – if the scent dries down, mix again all the ingredients in the bowl and the smell will come back.
Use Vodka – Vodka can help to keep scents longer since vodka will dissolve out any other fragrance for you to smell.
Remove dust from your potpourri if you want to keep it smelling fresh- put the potpourri in a sealable bag, then make holes on the side and shake. Accumulated dust should fall out leaving your potpourri clean as new.
If the potpourri fails to perform, use a spray with perfume so that the perfume can rejuvenate your mixture keeping it as good as new.
Secrets for an Aromatic Potpourri
Especially when winter is near, you want to have as many varieties of nice smelling flowers, leaves, and barks you can get. A wide variety means a wider range of flavors hence the more your place is going to smell better.
Fixatives – these important ingredients help in fixing the scents. Scents are normally locked in the petals so a fixative will likely bind to the scent-producing compounds so that it can remove them from the petal containing them. The stronger fixatives you use the better overall fragrance you attain and the shorter the curing time.
Blending – sometimes it is good to blend all the flavors together so you have one flowing nice aroma. Having different harsh aromas will irritate you and anyone likely to visit you. Blending aromas is an art. Perfect the art and you have the most arousing aromas in your house.
Charcoal briquette – add a charcoal briquette into your mixture during preparation. This briquette aids in absorbing any foul smell or liquids that might emanate from the whole solution. You are then sure of having a pure sample of good potpourri.
Add some nuts to the mixture; they improve the scent a lot.
Add more oil to the mixture if possible, especially high-quality fragrance oil, the more you add, the better the scent.
Autumn might be the best flower picking season, so utilize it for your potpourri while it lasts.
If the appearance of the potpourri is of importance, keep it out of direct bright sunlight which might bleach or fade it really fast.
Avoid using metal containers which might evoke an unwanted reaction thereby bringing up unwanted scents or diminishing the strength of the potpourri scent. Use glass, plastic or ceramics.
Make sure to keep potpourri away from children or pets, who may be tempted to eat it. It might be toxic, so keep it away from them.
Be sure to check for mold when the potpourri is curing. The whole mixture should be in a dark dry place.
When your potpourri cures you can use it in myriad ways. Like stuffing pillows with it, so your house always smells of the potpourri. Or put it in muslin bags and scent your bath with it.
Have fun exploring with your own blend of potpourri ingredients. Transform your home into this unforgettable place. A place with homely scents that your guests will forever remember.
If you are looking at organizing your home, then you should be thinking of instilling floating shelves. You not only appropriately store your stuff but also do it in a very stylish and trendy way if well instilled. Space is a challenge in most homes and if you are looking for the best way to maximize it, shelving is a perfect choice. There are a wide variety of shelves and most, if not every person’s taste is accounted for. Additionally, most modern shelves regardless of their style and shape present a clean display. They accelerate the wall in a sophisticated way and maintain neatness.
Depending on your room, you can have them instilled in even the most unlikely corners and still come up with something you’d be proud of. Shelves instilled right on top of your door create a vertical illusion, automatically making your room feel bigger. Corner shelves, though mostly ideal for bathrooms, can still fill in the vacant of your lounge walls in an unimaginable, but perfect manner. Whatever your choice might be, adds perfection to your home and spice to your vanilla walls. They enliven your overall décor and make your home look clutter-free. If being just stylish doesn’t just cut it for you, here are some more ways you can find floating shelves very beneficial.
Floating shelves can do so much more than sitting on the wall in neat lines, you can add in some function. For instance, do you have a convenient place where you can store your shoes? If not or you just want to show them off, you should get floating shelves. Install the shelves in an attractive pattern them display your collection. You can now admire your shoes even when they are not on your feet. If you also want to give your bedroom a more dynamic and open look, you can use low shelves as your nightstand. You might end up with more usable space than a regular nightstand. Furthermore, they are more affordable compared to most nightstands. A shelf that is well placed can also act as wine storage which is easily accessible plus you can show off your taste. Whatever comes to your mind, add function to your shelves. Don’t limit yourself!
Fill Up The Corners
Corners are one underutilized space, and you can change that by using floating shelves. Frankly, it is the best way you can fill up that space and leave it looking brilliant. When you have limited space, fill up the nooks with these shelves without having to sacrifice precious space someplace else. It looks best when instilled in the bathroom because even the extra toilet paper, cleaner detergent, and soap look great when arranged on a corner floating shelf. Your bathroom storage can be beautified by adding those shelves. Moreover, they give an airy and light look to your small space compared to other storage solutions you might come up with. Therefore, utilize your corners by making extra space for yourself while decorating at the same time.
Floating shelves can provide storage space as well as other storage units but without the use of bulky cabinets. This makes your space look open therefore creating an illusion of a bigger room. It is an effective way of storing books and other personal items. If you have kids, you also know how easily their toys can take control over every room, for storage, you can use floating shelves. They are not only effective in storing the toys but also keep some out of reach, therefore, regulating clutter and enables rotation of toys.
One of the most effective ways to make your house stand out from the rest and give a homey vibe is by adding some personality. Add character to your home and let your space speak volumes about the people who live there without you uttering a word. Creating a personality to your space is as good to your décor as it is to create an impression on your guests. How does it feel when you walk into a home and you feel connected to the person? It opens a doorway for a person to know more about you. A simple display of art on your floating shelf can be a good conversation starter. Therefore, share your hobbies and interest by choosing the perfect shelf to complement your lounge and collectibles.
Nothing screams messy like clutter. Clutter makes it impossible to have an organized, clean home. Therefore, bring some order to your home by designating a place for everything. A new set of floating shelves allows you to organize anything from your pantry to your living room and home office. Furthermore, when well instilled they have the added advantage of making your room look bigger. Pure frustration is when you are late for work and that’s when your car keys decide to disappear. Take care of such situations before they occur by instilling shelves to store stuff you use regularly and will be easily accessible. Take your time to organize your things in a logical way while incorporating some design aspects that have visual appeal. Your floating shelf is not a place to get overwhelming otherwise you will have nothing close to organized and airy.
Organizing Your Closet
At some point, we’ve all looked for help on how to keep our closets neat. While there are various ways to achieve organization, I have found floating shelves in closets very effective. Definitely, start by categorizing your clothes to find out what would be the best way to store them before investing in a storage system. Additional shelving in your closet wall is better if you are working with a big space. Regardless, it can convert your small closet into a space that can accommodate your entire wardrobe. It is most effectively caters to your accessories and performs storage. You can also have them to display your shoes for easy accessibility. Additionally, shelves are great for folded or rolled up clothes.
Floating shelves as you have seen provide both can function and design. Basically don’t limit yourself in utilizing your space, especially those nooks that are just bare.
People love living in houses that are spacious enough. Well, this has remained to be just a dream thanks to modern techniques of construction. Most modern apartments are not as spacious as the tenants would love. From small rooms to lower ceiling boards this has become a culture that many homeowners have been accustomed to. Ceilings add a very irresistible appeal to any house but lower ceilings make a house look squeezed and small.
Living in a house with a sunken roof may make you feel imprisoned and restricted in your own house. Since it may prove futile finding a house with a higher ceiling, there are other ways to make your lower ceiling look high. With the right set of skills and tricks, you can just have that high ceiling you have always yearned for in your house. So, how do you achieve that? Here are compiled methods that can help you create an illusion of making your ceiling appear high.
Play With Colors
If you ever want to create a different illusion of something then playing around with colors would be your first step. With the right choices of distinct and attractive colors, anything can appear totally different and unique every time it’s repainted. Having the right color coordination in your living room, your ceiling board will appear high. If what the experts advise is something to go by, then the ceiling should be brighter than the walls, this is so because the ceiling will be the center of focus. Thus, the ceiling will appear to be higher. You can opt to have a darker floor this will enhance the appearance of your ceiling.
Keep The Light Up
This is a trick that will easily create that illusion of having a higher ceiling. Lighting brightens up a room making the room look appealing. Beams of light rays hit the empty spaces of a room making the room look spacious. Mount wall lights on the corners of your living room. Don’t opt for chandeliers as they send their lights rays on the floor as opposed to wall lights. The wall lights will illuminate all over the ceiling creating an impression that your ceiling appears higher. By mounting the right wall lights your ceiling height gets enhanced.
Modern or most houses have very tall windows that make a room look attractive. Not only that but they also enable you to get a glimpse of the neighborhood from the comfort of your room. Air aeration in your room is also enhanced making the air in your room so fresh and clean. Well, these windows have another advantaged; they can make your ceiling appear high. All you need to do is have floor-sweeping curtains. These curtains are very long-running from the curtain rack to the floor. They also have artistic designs such as vertical stripes that run from up to down. These curtains are just what you need to create a different impression in your room.
Accessorize Your Walls
Having an empty wall will definitely make your low ceiling appear very low in fact. On the other hand, you wouldn’t want to add so many details on your walls as this will make your walls appear so much squeezed. Having details up on your wall will change the appearance of your ceiling. You can opt to have beautiful flowers vases mounted on the wall, beautiful and artistic photo frames, or even mirrors. All these will add an impact on your wall and in turn, your ceiling will look distinct. However, bear in mind not to overdo it, in that case, go for elegance and simplicity.
Opt For Lower Furniture
Selecting the right furniture when you have a low ceiling in your house becomes a very hectic process. It’s quite impossible to have very tall wardrobes as they may not even fit in your limited space. Since you don’t have the luxury of adequate height space, opt for low designed furniture. This includes having coaches that are low in size since your ceiling will appear to be very high. While at it, don’t go for a lot of furniture that will make your house look so much cramped and cluttered. If you can opt for multipurpose furniture the better for you. The lower the furniture the higher the ceiling appears to be.
Have you ever noticed that when a short person wears a shirt with vertical stripes they look somewhat tall? The same trick and concept can also be applied in interior design when you want your ceiling board to appear high. Vertical stripes that are running from top to bottom tend to take the focus of anyone who enters your house. These verticals also create a sense of beauty in your house making your house look elegant at all times. With these stripes, you won’t have to add so many details on your walls which would make your walls appear crowded.
Thinking vertically, figuratively speaking, is the key thing when it comes to making a low ceiling appear high. There is a lot of space vertically that you can tap in to and change the appearance of your house dramatically. You can have shelves on the walls, shelves that run from the floor upwards, you can also have drawers mounted high up the wall or even have artistic works fixed high up the wall. Basically, maximizing the vertical space pushes the ceiling up higher, illusionary.
If you want to be a happy homeowner living in a house with a low ceiling board doesn’t have to be a barrier anymore. You don’t need to reconstruct your house again neither do you have to shift to another house, all you need to do is apply a few tricks here and there. Getting creative with the design and display of your house will turn around the look of your house immensely. Everyone who steps into your house will admire your house. Besides these steps, you can always seek professional help.