March Monthly Newsletter
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Somehow we skipped winter, which normally would upset me. However now spring comes early! That means more flowers, open windows, and truly being able to get the house completely clean! This year we will be running a Spring Clean Special. Which will include cleaning:
ü Behind refrigerator
ü Under all area rugs (up to 3 area rugs)
ü Move and clean under couches and sofas
All this for an add onto your current package for only $50. Also, don’t forget to add on our Wowing Windows package or our Steam it up, Clean it up package! And if you want attic organization, its better to do it in the spring and not the summer!
Charity of the Month
The month of February we donated 5% of sales to; To Write Love on Her Arms. The month of March we will be donating another 5% of sales to the Pennsylvania Environmental Council, they are one of the most important non-profit organizations in Pennsylvania to us “tree huggers”. They deal with a wide range of issues but their expertise is focused on three broad sets of issues that are central to Pennsylvania's environmental well-being and quality of life: Water Resources, Sustainable Communities, and Energy & Climate. To find out more about Pennsylvania Environmental Council, go to http://www.pecpa.org/.
Organization Idea of the Month
Is there that one place in your house every time you go into it you think in your head, “That’s still here!?” or “This is never going to get cleaned out.” For most people this is the feeling about their attic or crawl space. It’s where things go to die, to never be used again. However, it doesn’t have to be used like that, it can be a place where you hide the Christmas gifts in winter, or store your new summer clothes until the heat hits. With open space and uses above our imagination this small area can be where dreams come true if we utilize it well.
First things first, get up there before the heat comes! Once the summer comes, all bets are off. Then take a look at your stuff and Analyze. Strategize. Attack. This will be a process and will take time and many comb thru. As always if you feel overwhelmed in any of this, you can call in the professionals, us.
Analyze what the items are: memories, seasonal storage, not needed old décor, things you never used, things you used to use, or just straight garbage. You need to emotionally disconnect yourself from the “stuff” in your attic. Look at it as old emotions, old memories. Not “I think there was a good reason I kept this.”
Strategize your steps, your physical and emotional steps. Work left to right, or clock-wise. Don’t skip an inch. Categorize it first: Garbage, donation or keep. Bag all the garbage in black bags, and then bag all the donation items in white bags, so you can tell the difference. As you make your donation bags don’t forget to write down what you are putting in. This is for a few different reasons, one, so you can write out an email to your family and say “This Friday I will be dropping off all these items to the thrift store if you want any of them, come by Friday, they will be in the trunk of my car.” And the second reason is to keep this list for a tax deduction on your taxes.
Attack your belongings! As you go thru these items a second time, keep in mind you still have not made that trip to the thrift store, so you can still add to it. Categorize everything. And if it doesn’t have a category, you may not need it. Put these items in piles according to the category. Then tote these items and label it. Memories 1 box to every 5 years is the rule of thumb. Seasonal items should be only as much as you are willing to put out every year. Papers are only up to every 7 years. Old child clothes should not be kept unless you plan on having a baby in the next few years. The stale heat and cold ruin clothes, and that style won’t be “in” a few years later. And other people’s storage….they need to get their own storage unit, because if you have had it, they don’t need it, let it be their problem. Now, if these items don’t fit..DONATE!
Cleaning Idea of the Month
Lets talk kitchen. Few tips of the trade:
v Use a fresh lemon to wash and sanitize a chopping block or a wooden cutting board
v Wipe the refrigerator handle every time you wipe your counter tops
v Every time your sink is empty, just spray in your cleaner and walk away, it sanitizes without you doing anything. (FYI, your sink is the dirtiest place in your home)
v When wiping out your microwave, put a cup of water with dish detergent in it, and cook for 1-2 minutes. Then it has evaporated and you’re stuck on gunk comes up like a breeze
v Last one, use baking soda everywhere! Clean your oven with it; clean your microwave with it, your garbage can, your stove top and everything in between. Just sprinkle it on and use a wet towel with water and start to scrub! It is its own abrasive cleaning adjent!
Craft of the Month
The Easter basket is always oriented around candy, what if we oriented it around spring?! How ingenious would that be! So let’s talk flowers. Children love to work with their hands, especially when they can accomplish something on their own. This craft is easy, and can make beauty! You need:
v Tissue paper
v Pipe cleaners
v Floral tape or Scotch tape
v Pinking shears
1. Cut out five 4-inch squares of tissue paper; stack, and fold into quarters. Draw petal shapes along the two folded edges. Cut out shapes, and unfold.
2. Bend one end of a pipe cleaner to form a round nub. Use the other end to pierce a hole in the center of the stack of petals; pull it through to form a stem.
3. At the flower base, scrunch the petals closed so they resemble a loose pom-pom. Wrap floral tape around the bottom inch of the flower's base and down the stem. Pull the layers of petals apart.
4. To make another kind of flower cut out five 4-inch squares of tissue paper; stack, and fold into quarters. Draw a quarter circle along the two un-folded edges. Cut out shapes with pinking shears; unfold.
5. Bend one end of a pipe cleaner to form a round nub. Use the other end to pierce a hole in the center of the stack of petals; pull it through to form a stem.
6. At the flower base, scrunch the petals closed so they resemble a loose pom-pom. Wrap tape around the bottom inch of the flower's base and down the stem. Pull the layers of petals apart.
7. To make another kind of flower, using two different colors and the pinking shears, cut two pieces of tissue (or crepe paper) into rectangles whose lengths are 6 inches and whose widths vary (ours were 2 1/2 inches and 3 1/2 inches). Center the smaller rectangle on top of the larger one, and fold, accordion-style.
8. Pinch the folds in the middle; hook the end of a pipe cleaner over them, and twist it. Fan out the paper until the ends meet. Lift up the small layer to form the daffodil center; trim with pinking shears. Wrap tape tightly around the bottom inch of the flower's base and down the stem.
Now let’s stuff your basket, we can insert you flowers however also instead of buying “grass” for your basket, you can make it! It’s a great way to recycle wrapping, construction, or craft paper: Feed leftover sheets or scraps through an electric shredder for colorful strips to use as basket grass. Desktop paper shredders are available at office-supply stores. To transform flat strips into spirals, crumple them in your hands, or curl with scissors. Feed the short side of rolled papers through shredder to retain the curl.
Healthy Idea of the Month
Here comes the time of year that you are going to have an over abundance of eggs around your home, and a great way to use them is this! Dyed deviled eggs! I know you are thinking that is gross. But it’s not, you don’t taste the food coloring and it’s festive and you can use it all year round with different colors. You dye the peeled hardboiled egg themselves before you cut them in half to make deviled eggs.
- Hard boil the eggs and refrigerate until ready to peel. Peel under running cold water and make your Deviled Eggs. Hint: if you add salt into the boiling water (about 1/8 of a cup) the shells come completely off with no effort.
- One tsp white vinegar and 5 to 20 drops of food coloring per one cup of hot water. Make as many colors are desired.
- Peel the eggs, and dip them into the different colors. Let them sit until you've achieved a color that you like (about 7 mins). Blot dry.
- Cut in half using one of those carrot cutters that make them crinkle shaped and make your favorite deviled egg recipe!
- Then pipe the yolk back into the colored eggs! Have fun watching everyone flip over the cool eggs