Archive for the Tips Category
If any one word can describe what interior design experts are predicting will dominate 2013 it’s this: quirky.
Looking back, we can easily describe much of 2011 and 2012 design as minimalist. Black and white, simple contrasting colors, modern furniture and a severe lack of personal photos and other objects seemed to characterize every interior design photo of the last couple of years. This can be attributed to the focus on saving money while having great design and really paring down and getting rid of excess clutter. But it does look like attitudes about interior design are changing, perhaps dramatically.
Experts have predicted living rooms around the country (and even around the world) are drawing inspiration from past decades. After years of overly simplistic styles, homeowners may be looking for the exact opposite type of style now. Patterns, glorious color, and even textures are to be seen throughout 2013, and stripes and florals have begun to make their way back into mainstream interior design. Chevron patterns were very big in 2012 and seem to have given way to simpler stripes this year (albeit in more eclectic color combinations), while the reintroduction of florals into home design seems to coincide perfectly with the 2013 color of the year.
Pantone, the ultimate authority on color, has determined the 2013 Color of the Year to be vibrant emerald. The official color of the Wizard of Oz, a color symbolic of royalty, and found all over in nature, emerald seems well suited to be appointed the color of the year. Emerald is somewhat oddly both vibrant and soothing, loud and quiet, energizing and peaceful. Emerald also has the innate ability to fit into any room in the home and just about any style: pair it with your already minimalist style in bits and pieces (say with an emerald throw pillow or emerald artwork) or incorporate the lovely hue into an already colorful or whimsical design (emerald pairs well with a wide range of other colors). Emerald also does serve as a perfect color to enhance both a traditional and contemporary style, which means it can be used regardless of what style you already have. It even pairs perfectly with the 2012 color of the year, tangerine!
If emerald has piqued your fancy and you’re interested in ways to begin incorporating the color into your existing design, start with a soft introduction. Upholster your kitchen bar stools in a soft emerald fabric, choose a new area rug with emerald undertones, and add vibrant plants near windows, if you don’t have some already. Most homes have some blues, browns, and creams which pair very well with green hues and make for an easy transition. Also, homeowners looking to go green around the house can use emerald as an inspiration. When you’re ready to more fully dive in to emerald you can always paint with the color or start to buy fabrics with at least a little emerald. This is where those stripes, florals, patterns and textures will all come into play with your interior design projects this year. Get quirky with it!
One last note about our interior design predictions for 2013: this hasn’t been proven and so far no expert has made this claim, but we’re willing to bet that seeing the color green around your home will make you feel a little richer. If this does happen, we bet the association has just as much to do with feeling more freedom in your interior design choices with an improving economy as it does with being surrounded by the color of money. But it’s a fun assessment, don’t you think?
New Year, New You! That’s the goal, right? When the clock struck midnight the first day of January, people all over the world planned to wake up later that morning with certain goals in mind. If you check the polls on what most have set out to achieve in the New Year many said, “to lose weight” or “get healthy.” Easier said than done, right?
While exercise is certainly important for the body and mind, diet is just as – if not more – important. You can exercise all you want, but going home and eating ice cream afterwards is just counterproductive. Don’t fret; you can still have your ice cream, just make it healthier!
Here are a few simple ingredient swaps that will either cut calories or add more healthful benefits to your overall diet:
- Since you have ice cream on the mind now, let’s start with that. Take 2 bananas, slice them up and freeze. Once frozen, throw them into a blender until whipped, this is your ice cream base! You can keep it simple and add cinnamon or vanilla. If you are looking for more flavor, throw in some of your favorite frozen fruit. If you have a sweet tooth, add a little peanut butter or raw cocoa powder.
- So you want to sauté some vegetables and throw a chunk of butter into the pan. Cut back on that extra cholesterol and substitute coconut oil instead. It offers up good fats that the body needs, and is heart healthy too.
- When baking, lose the eggs and use apple sauce in its place. Sound too weird for you? There is a product called Ener-G egg replacer, a powder mix made precisely for the use of egg replacement.
- Other egg replacement ideas for baking include: 1 mashed banana, 1/4 cup soft tofu (pureed), or 3 tablespoons fruit (pureed).
- Simple sandwich swaps include switching out the bread for a collard wrap. Stuff it with veggies of your choosing, add some avocado and a light sauce, like balsamic for a healthful lunch with far less calories than that BLT you usually bite into.
- Opt for dairy-free milk in your coffee or cereal to reduce calories and cholesterol. Options include sugar free almond, soy, coconut, hemp, and flax milk.
- Save money and calories making your own nut butters. Store bought peanut butter often comes with added calories, fats, and salts from additional ingredients that you may not have known were in there. Soak nuts overnight; throw them into a food processor with water and mix. It will take some time, but eventually (with a little patience on your part), it will turn into nut butter! Choose your favorite nut (raw almonds are a healthy option).
And finally, don’t forget a few more important tips that you may already know: use smaller plates, which in turn offers smaller portions, and remember to slow down! Take your time chewing and enjoy your meal. Eating too quickly cause large food consumption unnecessarily. Set realistic goals for yourself and don’t forget to enjoy! Depriving yourself can often result in negative consequences.
New Year’s Resolution 2013: Get Organized!
There are popular New Year’s Resolutions that top lists every year. We talked about the resolution to be more eco-friendly, and people across the globe have also made New Year’s Resolutions to get their lives more organized, whether that means organizing personal finances, personal belongings, or even organizing personal goals and routines. Different strategies will work better for different families, but these tried and true tips can give you a great starting place to fulfill at least one New Year’s resolution!
Top home organization tips for the new year
- Decluttering your home is the best place to start. Trying to clean your whole house can be a stressful process, so take it one room at a time. Make a plan and go through each room individually. Clear out clothes you haven’t worn in the last year placing them in a box to donate to charity. This strategy can work for other areas of the house, too. If there are a lot of knick-knacks or toys around the house that don’t get used put those in a box to donate to charity as well. In each room, once you’ve removed items that you don’t need, pick a few organizational tools to corral the remaining clutter. You’ll inevitably acquire more things over the course of 2013, so it’s good to clear the way now!
- Update your home’s safety features! Make a list of all the safety precautions that are relevant to your home or family and ensure that each is in working order. Check smoke alarms, store a working fire extinguisher in an easily accessible part of the house, and clean out the vents and tubes behind your dryer. It’s a popular spot for dryer lint that could easily spark a fire, even though most families stop at simply removing dryer lint from the filter. This simple step can greatly reduce your home’s risk of a fire and keep the air around your machines cleaner.
- Maximize the available space in your home. Not everybody is lucky enough to live in an extremely spacious home, but your choice of decor can drastically change the way a space looks. Concentrating the furniture in your home in arranged patterns can make a space seem far more open than it would appear otherwise.
- Use creative storage containers! If everything has a proper place, it’s easy to stay organized. In your living room, there are fun solutions to clutter. There are plenty of furniture options that double as storage units, like ottomans with removable lids and TV cabinets with display shelves and closed drawers. In your kitchen, opt for utility driven storage containers, like fun baskets for food or steel buckets for utensils. Combine those containers with straightforward item separators for your silverware and home office, and your house will be photo-op ready in no time.
- Create a schedule. Cleaning and organizing your home for the New Year is a great first step, but it won’t keep your home clean all year. Make a cleaning schedule that you’ll use each week and include simple things like loading the dishwasher and taking the trash out every night so that you’re never facing a kitchen full of dirty dishes or a stinky trash can. Then pick a day of the week for each of your bigger tasks, such as clean the whole house on Sunday or do bathrooms on Monday, the kitchen on Tuesday, and bedrooms on Friday. There will inevitably be weeks when your schedule has to change, but do whatever you can to stick to this schedule on a weekly basis!
We could give you tons more home organization tips, but none will work without the two most important parts: planning and motivation. Envision how your home would look in an ideal world and plan a realistic schedule that achieves the next best thing. After that, just stick to it. It might be tough at first, but if you stick to your cleaning schedule for a few weeks, it’ll become another ordinary routine! We’re not suggesting going full-on minimalism in your home, just keep in mind how home staging might make your home look.
Image courtesy of Freshome
Make 2013 the year of the emerald
At the start of the new year, many families and individuals strive to be more green, or eco-friendly, but don’t always know how to get started. Pantone has selected emerald as the official Color of the Year for 2013, and with this in mind we think some green focused, eco-friendly tips are in order. Now that we’ve welcomed 2013 fresh out of the box, here are some ways you can reduce your carbon footprint at home and on the road, and make your life more environmentally friendly.
Go Green At Home
- Set up a recycling bin: If you haven’t already done this, it’s the easiest way to be more Earth friendly. A separate trash can right next to the original one makes it easy to remember to toss cans, bottles and glass separately. If you already have a recycling container, take it one step further by separating the plastic from the metals and glass.
- Invest in energy efficient appliances: You don’t have to go out and spend several thousand dollars on brand new appliances to be eco-friendly. When your next appliance wears out shop for a replacement with the Energy Star logo and ask the retailer about recycling your old appliance. If no recycling is available, try to sell or give away the appliance to someone willing to fix and reuse it. This can also be applied to things like windows and doors: when it’s time for a replacement, look into energy efficient options.
- Buy with purpose: If going green is a resolution, you might also have the resolution to save more money. Try to buy things you know for sure that you will use, rather than buying just because it’s on sale, or just because it’s convenient. For example, you can re-purpose old hand towels into reusable napkins rather than throwing out the towels and buying disposable napkins. It’s easy to buy cart fulls at giant retail stores, but keeping your buy with purpose mantra in mind can reduce your spending and help keep you eco-friendly.
- Reduce energy use at home: Washing your laundry in cold water rather than hot water saves loads (get it??) of energy and helps keep your clothes in like-new condition longer, reducing the frequency you need to buy new clothes. Also remember to turn off the lights when you’re not using them, close windows before turning on the heat or AC, and
- Rent furniture!: Discarded furniture takes up a significant portion of our landfills, and too often homeowners don’t believe others will want their discarded furniture and they don’t try to sell or donate perfectly good pieces. If this has happened to you, consider renting your furniture. You can change your mind any time you want, there’s no worrying about picking up heavy pieces, and if you really like something you always have the option of buying it.
Go Green On The Road
- Get a hotel near your destination: This may seem like an obvious one, but getting a hotel that’s within walking distance of where you’ll be spending the majority of your time will eliminate the need for transportation. San Diego has plenty of lovely hotels in our Gaslamp District, making it easy to find a room right by where you’ll be. There are also short-term apartments available which feel more like home than a hotel, and are better for saving energy in the long run.
- Find a hotel that uses eco-friendly practices: Most hotels have policies in place to reduce their energy dependence. For example, you can hang your towels up to reuse them and refuse daily sheet changing to save energy and water. You can also leave the little soaps and shampoos untouched so they can be reused, or if you use them take them home to finish the bottle. Eating in the hotel restaurant is another way to save resources.
- Take advantage of shuttle services: While it’s well known that flying is the most energy intensive form of traveling, no one expects you to give up your seat for one on a Greyhound. However, most airports have a shuttle service that make it possible to commute to your hotel. This is especially true if you’re traveling for a conference and many other people will be going to the same location.
- Telecommute: Unless absolutely necessary, try to telecommute and host meetings online. Technology makes being in the office in person far less necessary than ever before, especially if that means a plane flight and a car rental. You and your company can save money with online meeting software, and if you have a long commute in a new location ask about telecommuting and saving the gas.
- Bring reusable bags: Reusable bags fold up into tiny, lightweight packets that can clip anywhere, and having one on you at all times eliminates your need for disposable plastic bags. These bags can also be used to pad fragile items during travel.
If you love the holidays as much as the rest of us, your home is probably decked out for your favorite holiday, whether that’s Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Hanukkah. When it comes to New Year’s Eve, however, it can be tough to decorate without being too cliche. If you’re looking for some unique and festive ways to decorate your home for a killer New Year’s Eve party, we have just the thing!
The 9 Best NYE Party Tips
New Year’s Eve is the perfect time to indulge yourself in luxurious crystal, gold and silver decorations. Here are nine ways to truly transform your New Year’s party from average to stunning. These 9 ideas are some of the best tips for New Year’s Eve party accessories and will encourage your guests to have a blast ringing in the new year.
9. Decked out champagne glasses
Instead of settling for the simple champagne flutes resting in your liquor cabinet, kick things up a notch! There are hundreds of fashionable ideas to elevate your champagne flutes. Visit your local craft store, pick up some silver number stickers, and make countdown champagne flutes. If you’ll have more than ten people in attendance, just make multiple sets of ten. If that doesn’t strike your fancy, there’s truly no better design feature to incorporate into your New Year’s party than glitter. Paint some regular glue onto the sides of your flutes, sprinkle glitter atop the glue, and seal with a finishing spray to make sure the glitter doesn’t cover your guests. You can even use a stencil to initial the glasses for each of your guests!
8. Christmas leftovers!
Using leftovers in fun and creative ways is a useful part of any holiday- why not use Christmas leftovers to decorate for a New Year’s Eve party? Fill vases of different shapes and sizes with white Christmas lights for some fun, frosty lighting. Buy some inexpensive champagne flutes and fill them with metallic Christmas ornaments to use as centerpieces on your table. Champagne and gold shades will mirror a real glass of bubbly and they’ll be a great addition to your table!
7. DIY decor
Visit your local scrapbooking store and pick out cardstock in fun metallic colors and patterns. Cut circles of different shapes out of each piece of decorative paper, and connect the circles with jump rings or thin ribbons. You can leave them hanging vertically from the ceiling or hang them along the wall for inexpensive and unique decorations.
6. Update your bar
Every New Year’s Eve party needs a mix of glittery baubles and elegant hardware. If you don’t already own them, this is a great time to add some classic pieces to your bar. A silver champagne bucket (or several) to chill bubbly for the night and crystal decanters for party goers who’d rather skip the champagne will elevate the tone of the entire evening.
5. Make a trip to Forever 21
Fun clothing stores aimed at teenagers are a great way to pick up cheap bling for the night. You’ll be able to find some gaudy pieces that you can throw in a bowl by the door- everyone can choose something glittery to don for the night as a departure from their typically modest style.
4. Metallic touches
Fill the entryway or an alcove close to the party area with white, silver, and gold balloons! This is a classy and sophisticated way to incorporate balloons into your New Year’s Eve festivities, and it’ll keep the party light hearted.
3. The countdown!
With the advent of sites like Hulu and Netflix, many individuals are choosing to forego traditional cable and simply use services that offer more options. When you’re planning on watching a televised event, you have to be prepared and have several streaming options for the big countdown.
Hulu usually has several different options for New Year’s Eve broadcasts, whether you’re looking for a musical event or the traditional broadcast in Times Square. As it gets closer to December 31st, make a list of broadcasts that will air in your area and have links ready to go live on New Year’s Eve. If you don’t already have one, invest in an HDMI cable that will connect your laptop and computer to make streaming easy. You can even make a fun “menu” on a blackboard describing each of the broadcast options for your guests. (Or just play a New Year’s Eve movie – chances are your guests won’t be paying attention anyway!)
2. Technology check!
To keep the party going before and after the countdown, make sure you have fun playlists created with the New Year in mind. Whether you’re a fan of trendy dance music or classic jazz crooning in the background, you’ll want your sound to frame your festivities perfectly. If you normally settle for listening to music on your laptop or small speakers, now is the time to upgrade! Pick out a complex sound system that you can use for years, or choose a simpler fix: buying an iPod docking station will make it easy to navigate between playlists at the party, and there are docking stations for every price range.
1. Incorporate New Year’s Eve into your outfit
There are great festive options for men and women out there. Wear a shirt or tie in a fun metallic color or pattern (silver, gold, or even a combination of the two). Women have a wide arsenal to choose from, but here are some fun picks for this year: wear a fun black dress with bold silver or gold jewelry, a sequined cocktail dress, or a daringly composed dress in a shimmery white or silver shade. Throw some silver bows or rhinestone hair clips into your outfit and you’re good to go!
These tips are great for any New Year’s Eve party, and they’re easy to pull off in a housing rental, so start planning your New Year’s Eve bash today!
Ease the Stress of Holiday Traveling
This year, estimates predicted that almost 24 million people would fly somewhere to celebrate Thanksgiving. That’s 150,000 up from the numbers in 2011, and those people sometimes aren’t moving quickly! Travel strategically this year to reduce your chances of being stranded at the airport and check out our travel tips for the holidays.
Everyone should do the usual to prepare for flying: stay hydrated and have snacks on hand, arrive early (especially if you’re travelling during a peak travel time) and stay up to date on the status of your flight(s).
Traveling with Family
If you’re travelling with your family, it might seem like a daunting task to herd your whole brood onto the plane without re-enacting a scene from Home Alone and losing someone in the airport. Some tips to help you survive the chaos of holiday travel:
- Pack unwrapped presents in your checked baggage. Unfortunately, presents will likely need to be unwrapped and scrutinized at security. Not only will you have wasted wrapping paper, you’ll have delayed the entire security line as someone unwraps your perfectly benign package of socks.
- Talk to the family members you’re travelling with and have a backup plan in case there are significant airport delays. Pack enough medication for a couple of days in the bag you’ll have with you, and agree about where you’ll be staying if you’re stuck waiting for a flight overnight. Know what the airline has the right to do, and what your rights as a passenger are.
- Encourage everyone in your party to pack light- and strategically. Bring as little with you as you can, and think about where you’re packing it. It’s a great idea to bring an extra outfit in your personal bag or carry-on item in case your luggage gets lost. Most “lost luggage” will end up returned to you within a few days, but it’s nice to have something clean to wear while they look for it!
Corporate Traveling During the Holidays
If you’re travelling for work this holiday season, there are some crucial corporate travel tips to make sure that you don’t get bogged down by all of the families in the airport who are travelling for pleasure (or forced family fun time):
- The earlier in the day you fly, the less likely you are to run into delayed flights or congestion within the airport, making your trip much quicker.
- If you fly on Christmas Day as opposed to Christmas Eve, not only will tickets be cheaper, you’ll probably manage to avoid most of the holiday crowds. And perhaps you’ll be upgraded to business class!
- Smart practices like checking in online and printing your boarding pass in advance are even more important with holiday sized lines. See if your airline will let you pay for your checked bag in advance- that’s a good way to minimize your time in line and get a discount.
Remember to Relax
No matter what your travel situation is – taking the clan to grandma and grandpas or getting bumped from business class on a long international flight – understand that the holidays are a time when more people will be traveling and there will be more chances for things to go wrong. So leave a little earlier than normal, take a few moments to grab a cup of coffee and a new book or magazine, and spend some time people watching while you wait to hear if you’ll be on the next flight or spending another night toughing it out. A little perspective and zen thinking can get you through it all.
Image courtesy of USA Today.
Many people are on the road during the holidays, but not always for the typical reasons of visiting family or enjoying a yearly vacation. Some are stuck far from home in an unfamiliar city during the holidays because of a work contract while others spend much of their time traveling between multiple locations regularly for work or school. But just because a person is away from their main home during Christmas or Hanukkah doesn’t mean they can’t decorate and get into the holiday spirit!
Easy holiday decorating tips for a temporary home
While you may not want or be able to put up a full Christmas tree and string thousands of lights you can still get the feeling of real Christmas decor in your temporary home. Any one of these apartment-friendly Christmas tree alternatives can give the feeling of the season without the hassle and commitment that a live tree requires. One simple string of LED lights, a few well placed electric or scented candles, and some garland or tinsel can make any space feel all decked out. You can also buy a fresh wreath for the door or wall, which takes up very little space, requires no maintenance and can be used with existing hooks or temporary hooks. A menorah is another great decoration for a temporary home as it requires no holes in the wall and very little space; add a few more candles in nearby nooks for a cozy feeling.
Subtle holiday decorating ideas
Don’t forget about the non-visual decorations that you can do almost anywhere. Christmas music on your iPod can make your temporary house feel like home for the holidays, as can the smell of cookies baking in the kitchen. Placing some live greenery around your place, like a pine branch in a vase or leaves in a bowl, can bring the smell of the holidays to a small space. If you have a fireplace find some fragrant branches to burn, like lavender, pine and cinnamon scented pinecones. Rent (or bring with) a classic holiday movie to watch and make a traditional meal to fill your temporary home with warmth, memories and great smells.
The Christmas tradition is to get a giant, live evergreen tree to prominently display in that second living room (right in front of the oversized bay window). But we don’t all have second living rooms just like we don’t all have maids, and our first living rooms are usually filled with our furniture. There are also countless situations when a home just might not have room for a standard sized Christmas tree, or might not realistically be able to keep a large living tree – those living in apartments or temporary homes, those with major travel plans, those away at school, those planning large parties, those with small children and/or rambunctious pets… the list goes on.
But just because you don’t have the space or the lifestyle to care for a large living tree doesn’t mean you’re forced to skip out on Christmas decorating. There is a growing variety of smaller and other alternative trees to help you ring in the season in style.
5. Large artificial trees: If you don’t have the type of lifestyle that can support caring for a live tree and you don’t want to be dealing with a brown, dead tree on Christmas day, an artificial tree can be the ideal solution. Modern designs have come a long way and many now look just like the real thing. Just light a scented candle nearby so it smells like the real thing.
4. Smaller live trees: If space is the issue, a smaller live tree can give you that Christmas tree feeling without forcing you to rearrange your whole home. They don’t require as much upkeep and don’t spread as many needles around! You can even rent a Christmas tree (imagine that!), and have a small to medium sized live tree in a pot delivered and then picked up after Christmas to be planted, which both saves time and hassle and is great for the environment.
3. Table top potted trees: If space is a big issue, there are miniature “trees” that sit right on a table as a centerpiece that can be decorated with small ornaments and tinsel. These “trees” are actually rosemary bushes, grown in the shape of a fir tree. They smell great, can last for months after Christmas when cared for, and can be used in cooking!
2. Table top artificial trees: There is always a group of people who have neither space nor the ability to care for a live tree (frequent travelers, we’re looking at you). Enter the table top artificial tree. Often a small symbol of Christmas more than anything, a table top artificial tree still says Christmas without making you feel guilty for killing yet another house plant. (And this Charlie Brown replica brings back childhood memories.)
1. Wall decals: If you have absolutely no space for a tree whatsoever but still want one, a wall decal may be your saving grace. Constructed from whatever materials you have on hand (get creative!) or printed out on paper and taped together, a wall tree can get as large as the wall if you like. This non-traditional Christmas tree alternatives is sure to get some comments, but no doubt that it will be the center of your holiday festivities.
Honorable Mention for non-tree decorations: Wreaths, interior lights, garland, tinsel, candles and everything-but-the-tree decor can make your home feel as Christmas-y as ever, even if you don’t have the tree. You can also tape your holiday greeting cards in the shape of a tree! Decorate for the season as much as you can and as much as you want, but if you have to (or want to) forego the tree this year you don’t have to feel like you’re skipping Christmas.
Thanksgiving is almost here! If you’re anything like most Americans, you’ll be sitting down on Thursday to a delicious spread of your family’s traditional Thanksgiving recipes. This can mean a turkey, but it can also mean traditional menu staples from your country of origin or a tweak in the recipe that’s been followed for generations. Whether you put mushrooms or slivered almonds in your green bean casserole, have turkey or ham, cornbread or bread rolls, your feast is sure to be chock full of the foods you love.
In honor of this food-centered holiday, here’s a list of the most outrageous Thanksgiving dinner recipes. These are sure to leave you stuffed!
5. Adding bacon to anything: This first one is a bit of a cheat, since it’s not actually a recipe. But with bacon stuffing, bacon weave apple pie, and putting bacon in vegetables, there’s no shortage of ideas to add bacony calories to your Thanksgiving menu. Another great favorite is to make a leftover sandwich the next day with crispy bacon. It’s not like the vast majority of Thanksgiving dishes are super healthy, and that adding a bit of bacon is a little treat, which is why bacon toppings deserve to be on the list.
4. Candied Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes are actually quite healthy, but when they’re topped with brown sugar, butter, and marshmallows the calories just seem to pile on. Not to mention, adding sweetening toppings to sweet potatoes seems a little much.
3. Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding: Paula Deen takes the traditional bread pudding recipe and kicks it up several notches. Two dozen Krispy Kreme donuts, condensed milk, eggs, fruit cocktail and raisins make up the ingredient list on this over-the-top dish. But to really top it off, she recommends covering the whole thing in a rich butter rum sauce, which is loads of butter, sugar, and rum.
2. Cherpumple: Inspired by the Turducken, the Cherpumple is a pie in a pie in a pie in a cake. Made from several different Thanksgiving desserts, the Cherpumple is sure to please everyone (or no one at all). To create this dessert, bake a cherry pie in a white cake, a pumpkin pie in a yellow cake, and an apple pie in a spice cake and combine them together using frosting.
1. The TurBacon: This monstrosity deserves to be the #1 most outlandish Thanksgiving dinner recipe based on number of calories alone. The team from Epic Meal Time has counted more than 50,000 calories in this concoction. The TurBacon, also known as a bird in a bird in a bird in a bird in a bird in a pig, has turkey, duck, chicken, cornish hen, quail, and, of course, immense amounts of bacon, all inside a whole pig, which is topped with even more bacon. Warning: the video is not for the faint-hearted, or the vegetarian.
There’s so much that can be said about being organized around the home- besides making it easier to find things you need, a well organized home creates a calm and peaceful feeling. Clutter is also a major source of aggravation and is always the first thing your guests will notice, not the dust bunnies behind the couch. Even if you’re not planning to do any major party planning this holiday season, getting your home organized and in order for the end of the year will help you start off 2013 on the right foot (and for those of you who are, Thanksgiving is officially one week away!).
The first step to an organized home is to take stock of all of the things you have. The second step is to do a small purge – just enough to help you clear some space. Clear off counters and desk tops of junk mail, old documents and unanswered letters. Go through every room, including the bathroom and the kitchen, and take an honest stock of all of the things you keep. The best rule of thumb for organizing at any time is to make sure everything has its own place: if it doesn’t have a “home” it doesn’t need to stay.
Once you’ve cleared out belongings you don’t need to hang on to, you can get some new organizing tools. Think of things like good looking shelving for the empty space on the wall and inserts to better organize the junk drawer in the kitchen. Try to use what you already have rather than spending a lot of time and money finding and buying new things. Open shelving and display cabinets force people to be more organized and neat because disorder and uncleanliness is out in the open.
A home will look cleaner and more organized with open spaces, and if you have collectibles and other personal items spilling all over your shelves your home will look messier than it really is. Open shelves on the walls not only hold your belongings but tend to look like they’ve been artfully designed. Another good thing to keep in mind when getting organized for the holidays or any time is to keep things easy to clean. You may love your collection of vases but if you have to move them around every time you want to dust you’ll probably just let the dust accumulate. Keeping your visible things clean and as free of clutter as possible is the key to an organized home.
Image courtesy of Solutions