Why People Like Artificial Plants

What can be done with artificial plants is just a matter of seeing it for yourself. Who knew that manipulating plastic could even turn out to look that beautiful? If you are the type who's against the destruction of the Rain Forest, who said that you should not have any green in your home? Artificial plants are odorless and the only thing they do catch is dust. Taking a damp cloth, or even having the kids spend on morning on a Saturday cleaning them, will bring back the color of the plants.

Artificial plants can resemble actual flowers and it will take a second – maybe even a third – glance to realize that they are not real. A few of the plants are available with artificial water, which adds to the look-a-like effect, and be beautiful centerpieces on the coffee table, on the mantelpiece or even on the bedside pedestal. There is nothing wrong with having plastic in your house, and if you are against it, you just have a look at a few of the artificial plants and decide for yourself. You will not be blamed if you are taken to the artificial plant section and can not tell the difference between real and plastic.

The two are very close – maybe so close that there is no fault. To tell the difference all you have to do is put your nose near each of them and smell the difference. When owning artificial plants in your home and would like to give it a fresh smell, try adding a few drops of potpourri oils on the brim of the vase. That should convince the visitors that your beautiful flowers are making the room smell so nice. Share your secret with them and tell them and then see the looks on their faces when they stand there in disbelief.

People love artificial plants for many reasons as you can see. Since they are not as delicate as real plants, they can also be easily found and purchased online. Find any artificial plants you like online and take measurements to make sure they'll be a perfect fit for your home. …

How to Maintain Sliding Windows

Sliding windows are beautiful additions to any home. However, they also require quite a bit of maintenance to keep looking their best through the years. While different types of windows don’t require such an intense cleaning schedule, sliding doors need a lot of attention and upkeep lest they become streaky and unmanageable. But figuring out how to keep your sliding windows from getting smudgy doesn’t have to be a daunting task. If you’re trying to find the best way to keep your replacement windows and sliding window frames from looking filthy, here are a few tips for maintenance.

Clean the Tracks

When you go to clean your windows, your first instinct might be to start with the window glass. But before you even think about tackling the glass itself, you’re going to have to get deep into those tracks if you want to start really making a difference. Your sliding window’s tracks accumulate a ton of gunk even over the span of a few days, let alone a few months. If you want to get really deep into the tracks and clear out any buildup, use a small tool like an old toothbrush and a bit of gentle cleaner to scrub away debris. Once you’ve scraped off a good amount of gunk, remove it with a paper towel and go back over the area with a sponge to pick up anything that’s left.

Clean the Glass

Now that you’ve tackled the tracks, you’re ready for the glass. Using window cleaner and a gentle sponge, work your way down in even strokes. Always start at the top to allow the water to drip downward, and try not to dry your window with any hard, scratchy material. Dry gently and don’t be stingy with the Windex. In fact, for the best possible clean, you might want to go through this process a few times, being careful to dry your window gently with each cycle.

Remove the Frame

Before cleaning your frame, you’ll want to make sure it’s properly and safely removed, sashes and all, from the casement. Be as gentle as you can when removing your frame, taking out the sashes and loosening the appropriate screws in order to get an easy grip on the framework. If your window sash is secured by caulking or other old weatherstripping material, take a moment to remove the excess with a scraper before proceeding.

Clean the Frame

After the glass is cleaned, the hard part begins. When it comes to cleaning your window’s frame, you don’t have to be quite so gentle. Using steel wool and an appropriate cleaner to scrub away any spatter or dirt will help restore your window’s frame to its original splendor. If you’re working with a sensitive material, be sure to use a gentler cleanser. For instance, don’t use wood soap with aluminum, and go easy on harsh chemical cleaners if you’re working with treated wood or other sensitive frameworks. When replacing the frame, be wary of smudging the glass, …

My House and Garden

A Fondue Party is ideal for an informal evening with friends. This popular dish comes from Switzerland where villagers in the mountains had to rely on local produce, like cheese, wine and home baked bread during the long winter month. The name fondue comes from the French word "fondre", which means to melt or blend. Fondue meaning melted cheese in wine. You will need a chafing dish over a spirit stove and long fondue forks. Place the heated fondue dish on the spirit stove in the center of your table and hand out a fork to all your guests. Everyone spears a piece of bread onto the long fork, dips it into the fondue, turns it once or twice before eating it. In no time the ice will be broken and the party in full swing with everyone trying not to drop the bread form the fork. The custom is that anyone who looses a piece of bread in the dish must supply a bottle of wine. Even the experts find it hard, especially after a few glasses of Kirsch. Fondue Parties in Switzerland are a lot of fun with its warm atmosphere.

Lots of other delicious variations exist now, eg Fondue Bourgignonne made with Fillet Steak accompanied with Mustard, Tatar, Bearnaise, Tomato or Curry sauce and so on.

Swiss Cheese Fondue:

Ideally a rustic wine and small glasses of Kirsch and a crispy salad are served with this. Suitable for Vegetarians.

350g (12oz) Emmenthal Cheese, grated

350g (12oz) Gruyère Cheese, grated

45cl (3/4 pint) dry white wine

3 tablespoons of Kirsch

3-4 flat teaspoons of corn starch

grated nutmeg to taste

1 clove of garlic

pepper to taste

crusty firm bread, like French bread, cut into bite size pieces

rub the fondue pan with garlic

pour in the wine and heat very gently over the cooker

when hot add a small amount of cheese at a time, stirring continuously

bring it gently to bubbling point

add the kirsch mixed with the corn starch

let it simmer for another 3 minutes, stirring continuously

now place it on your fondue stand with a lit flame and serve

Tip: corn starch is a white type thickening flour and not the yellow maize variety …

Great Tips and Info on House Painting

Painting on or in a home is one place that a novice can save loads of money on fixing up their own home. This is because other things on a home such as decorative carpentry or roofing require a certain level of experience to see the job through correctly.

If your home is a one story home then you are in luck and the job will be that much easier but you still are going to need some ladders which can be rented if you do not want to buy them. Clean your home well before you begin the job and scrape off any loose crud that you find and pay close attention to the windows and anything els that is going to be masked off so the tape will stick good.

If you are going to be using an airless spray you will also have to "roll the paint in" after it is sprayed on and it takes people to "spray and roll." A very important tip is to check out a rented airless spray carefully before you leave the rental yard with it. This is because they have to be cleaned and maintained completely after each use and rental airless sprayers can get neglected.

If you try to do your job with a "crud filled" and "gummed up" rented airless you will be left screaming cursing and dripping with paint as it will continualy clog and make the job impossible. Be extra careful when spraying paint or you may be stuck following your next door neighbor a new paint job on his car. The fine mist carries so easily in a breeze and by the time you realize what has happened it will be too late.

Good heavy canvas tarps work great but they are expensive to buy so you might think of renting some of them before you begin your job, because heavy canvas tarps are the only way to go when covering floors or patios. …

Safety First In Decorating a Baby's Room

When introducing a new little one to the house, it's always fun to decorate their new bedroom, or nursery. Most of the fun comes from the shopping – seeing all the items available from furniture to clothing to wall hangings, and mixing and matching everything together to make a perfect whole.

However, attractiveness in a baby's room must take second place to safety. So before you buy – or make – anything, make sure you check for the latest safety guidelines. Using your common sense is of course the main thing, but sometimes issues arise that had not occurred to even the most devoted parent, so it's always a good thing to do some research and see what the latest studies say.

The crib Cribs manufactured after 1974 have to meet certain safety guidelines. For example: Do not use cribs with stylish or decorative cutouts – babies can get their heads or arms stuck, corner posts – babies can hit their heads, or lead paint.

The space between slats should be no more than two inches apart – again, to make sure the baby can not get its head, or arm, between them. The baby will grow quickly, so once it's able to stand and the rails of the crib are less than three-fourths the child's height, time to get a new crib.

The mattress fit is also important – do not use a mattress covered with plastic, and make sure the mattress fits into the crib snugly, and does not slide around. Do not have large pillows in the crib, either.

Convertible cribs Kids grow so fast that they'll grow out of their first crib and soon need another. There are "convertible" cribs on the market – cribs that change and adapt as your child grows. These can be expensive to start with, but as you will not need to buy a new bed every few months … they become economic in the long run. However, make sure you know what the crib looks like once its been "converted" to make sure you like the design!

Furniture and Decorations If you're on a budget, or even if you're not, many items for a baby's nursery can be bought second hand. You simply have to use common sense and caution when examining these materials to ensure that they're still sturdy, that nothing's loose – no splinters, etc.

There are many official sites on the web that talk about crib and nursery safety: the National Safety Council has a website, as does the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. (The US CPSC has webpages in Spanish as well as English.) The American Academy of Pediatrics also has safety tips on their website.

So, have fun with your decorating, and use some common sense. And common sense dictates that you check all available material and educate yourself on what's best for your new baby. …

Family Relationships in "A Doll’s House"

Torvald Helmer, one of the main characters of the play, is somewhat “righteous.” He prides himself for earning a comfortable living for himself and his family, and for earning a high status in society, all through honest, hard work. His wife, Nora, is a moral woman, so much so that in the opening of the play, she had this childlike innocence and naivety. Her worst lie could easily have been sneaking macaroons to eat, disobeying her husband’s rules against sweets.

It is emphasized that a parent is obligated to lead a moral life to set an exemplar lifestyle for their children. Throughout their marriage, Nora and Torvald have tried to ensure to nurture their three children that type of environment. With the way they uphold their moral beliefs, it seemed that they have accomplished their parental responsibility quite well. It remained so until, Nora revealed that at the time of her father was on his deathbed, Torvald fell ill. She was forced to borrow enough money to travel south to Italy, where Torvald could nurse back his health. She committed two crimes–first, she borrowed money without her husband’s consent, and second, she had forged a signature. The second crime she was guilty of mirrored Krogstad’s, and she was likely to follow his fate. Krogstad became a moral outcast in society for his felony, and lost his career as a lawyer along with his credibility. He was left nothing but a tainted name.

To justify Krogstad’s dismissal at the bank, Torvald revealed to his wife the aversion he had with a corrupt man like Krogstad. Torvald explained how Krogstad passes his immorality to his children, “…Because an atmosphere like that infects and poisons the whole life of a home…And for years this fellow Krogstad has been going home and poisoning his own children with lies and deceit.”

Nora believed that she, too, would bring similar corruption to her children, bringing destruction to her entire home. Nora’s innocence and morality shone when she was willing to sacrifice her life or leave her home just so that her husband will not suffer the consequences of her crime, and also, in order to sustain her children’s purity. However, Torvald was blind from rage and from his sensitive concern for what society thought, therefore, he forbade her from raising their children; he could not trust them under the care of a “shiftless woman.”

In a parallel situation, Dr. Rank has fallen ill and it worsens by the minute, a disease is ravaging through his body. In the days of his prime, Dr. Rank’s father had enjoyed his many mistresses, now Rank has taken the punishment. Dr. Rank considered it an injustice to “pay for some one else’s sins. Yes, indeed, the whole thing’s a joke! My poor innocent spine must pay for my father’s amusements.” The disease he has, consumption of the spine (syphilis), is an enduring symbol of his father’s depravity and indulgence. Rank possessed the physical representation of his father’s lifestyle–it is what …

Preventing Mishaps on Stair Treads

Stair treads are one of the most abused parts of your stairs. This comes as no surprise since the other name for them is the ‘step’, meaning that they are being stepped on boundlessly every day. This is also why keeping them always safe to use is a must for every home or office. After all, you’ve already heard about many accidents that happen on the stair case. So here are some effective but simple ways to prevent mishaps with stair treads:

A good point to start with is ensuring that your stair treads are durable enough to withstand constant abuse and pressure since they take the bulk of the weight of whoever is using the stairs. Investing in stair parts that are durable will also ensure the safety of your stairs.

Start off with your material. If you are using wooden stair treads and a fully wooden staircase, it’s best to use hardwood made from a reliable supplier of stair parts/ supplies. If you are using concrete or steel, it’s also a good way to have a safe and durable staircase. Don’t forget to maintain it too. Always be on the lookout if it needs repair.

Do you have small kids in the house? Then installing some anti-slip treads should do the trick. This type of stair treads has a non-slip surface which offers great traction whenever you step on them. Trips and slips are drastically minimized when these are used. Also, never leave anything lying around near or on your stairs. Things like toys and rugs should be kept away from stairs. If it makes you feel safer, you can also install end gates for your stairs. You can put these at the topmost and the bottom end of your staircase. This is to prevent your small kid from using the staircase without your supervision.

Using high shine floor polish on your stair treads is a very bad idea, because this will be only increasing the chances of slips. Stair carpets should also be secured completely. When it comes to maintenance, it just basically involves wiping down the treads, stair railing, and balusters, just to keep dust at bay. Just keep the high shine effect on the hand railings or on the balusters.

Preventing mishaps on your stair treads is easy if you will follow the tips previously mentioned. Making sure that safety of your stairs is not taken for granted should be every homeowner’s priority.…

Selling Your House? Mow Your Lawn!

A property that has a well manicured lawn has one of the best opportunities at showing pride in ownership than any other outdoor technique.

For one thing, there is a large upswing in the priority that homeowners place in their outdoor living spaces.

Therefore, the landscaping of your front yard (especially) as well as that of your back yard should look its very best when it's selling time. Your landscaping will make a huge contribution to the resale value of your home, so make sure that it's doing its best to help you out.

In fact, studies have shown that when the landscaping of a home is in excellent condition, it can sell for about 4 to 5 percent higher, while homes with landscaping in very poor condition can sell for 8 to 10 percent less. That's a huge difference in the overall selling price of your home.

You may be wondering exactly how much time you should dedicate to sprucing up the landscape of your property. How much time and money is worth it for your sale?

Even if you put a minimal amount of money, effort, and time in to your landscaping, it will help you in selling your home, and sometimes even getting a boost in the selling price. Every effort you make will help.

However, do not overdo it. Remember that it's not a selling feature; it's only something to help the overall appeal of your property, so that the other selling features will be better appreciated.

You should keep your lawn mowed so that it is even, and neatly short. Keep it well weeded, as these will only appear as blemishes to your landscaping. Make sure to use a weed eater to do the edges, as this gives your work a superior finish touch.

If there are any "bald" patches in your lawn, buy a small bag of seed and care for the spot, filling it in. This is especially important if you have a dog who digs or who leaves "pet damage" where s / he does his or her business.

After you fill in the dead spots that your dog has left, make sure to water the areas after your dog "waters," to prevent new dead patches from forming. Watering the areas will dilute the urine to stop it from burning the grass.

This effort makes an immeasurable difference in the overall malnutrition of the house, and the impression that it will leave potential buyers. …

Selling Your House? Mow Your Lawn!

A property that has a well manicured lawn has one of the best opportunities at showing pride in ownership than any other outdoor technique.

For one thing, there is a large upswing in the priority that homeowners place in their outdoor living spaces.

Therefore, the landscaping of your front yard (especially) as well as that of your back yard should look its very best when it's selling time. Your landscaping will make a huge contribution to the resale value of your home, so make sure that it's doing its best to help you out.

In fact, studies have shown that when the landscaping of a home is in excellent condition, it can sell for about 4 to 5 percent higher, while homes with landscaping in very poor condition can sell for 8 to 10 percent less. That's a huge difference in the overall selling price of your home.

You may be wondering exactly how much time you should dedicate to sprucing up the landscape of your property. How much time and money is worth it for your sale?

Even if you put a minimal amount of money, effort, and time in to your landscaping, it will help you in selling your home, and sometimes even getting a boost in the selling price. Every effort you make will help.

However, do not overdo it. Remember that it's not a selling feature; it's only something to help the overall appeal of your property, so that the other selling features will be better appreciated.

You should keep your lawn mowed so that it is even, and neatly short. Keep it well weeded, as these will only appear as blemishes to your landscaping. Make sure to use a weed eater to do the edges, as this gives your work a superior finish touch.

If there are any "bald" patches in your lawn, buy a small bag of seed and care for the spot, filling it in. This is especially important if you have a dog who digs or who leaves "pet damage" where s / he does his or her business.

After you fill in the dead spots that your dog has left, make sure to water the areas after your dog "waters," to prevent new dead patches from forming. Watering the areas will dilute the urine to stop it from burning the grass.

This effort makes an immeasurable difference in the overall malnutrition of the house, and the impression that it will leave potential buyers. …