Simple, sustainable DIY Halloween decor

Fall has arrived, and the holiday season is right around the corner, making for the perfect time to get creative with Mission Fall Decor 2020. While you might find inspiration walking through the local home improvement or craft store, dedicating yourself to DIY decor saves you money, adds a personal sense of accomplishment and presents the opportunity to recycle or select materials that are sustainable and environmentally-friendly.

a spread of apples and pumpkins

Use products of the season 

Autumn is the season for apple and pumpkin everything, which launches a starting point for your seasonal decorating. Select glass bowls to fill with apples or gourds for an easy table centerpiece. Similarly, carve out the tops of apples or pumpkins and place a candle inside. To fill the house with the smell of cinnamon and apples, cube or slice an apple, add a cinnamon stick and some nutmeg and top with water. Allow the mixture to simmer on the stove, and keep an eye on the water level so it doesn’t boil dry.

Related: DIY fall decor using upcycled items from thrift stores

To add a cozy feel, grab a flannel blanket and drape it over a hay bale near the door to welcome guests. Top with a few pumpkins and give it a backdrop of corn stalks. After the season, everything except the blanket can go into the compost pile.

Now with your scene set, put on your crafty hat for some additional decorations easily made from home-sourced supplies.

a door wreath with small pumpkins and fall leaves

Twig wreath

Walk into a craft store this time of year, and you’ll likely see an assortment of wreaths, including a basic design with nothing more than twigs glued together. Instead of doling out the cash, make your own using natural materials. Bundle up the kids and head out for a stick-collection party. With your selections back home, scrape the sticks free of moss and dirt. Overlap them and adhere with a hot glue gun, creating a circle as you work. After completing the first layer, add additional layers for depth. Once the twigs are securely attached, you can keep the ultra-natural look or spraypaint the wreath black or even orange for a bolder display. Add a burlap bow, or glue berries, mini pumpkins or dried apples on if you desire. You can check out this tutorial from Ernest Home Co. for more guidance.

a spread of mini pumpkins and tea candles

Metal Jack-O-Lantern luminaries

Of course, a very popular fall holiday inspires specific witchy and graveyard appeal. To get started on your Halloween Decor 2020, hang luminaries with a Halloween theme, or use them to line a walkway up the driveway or through the garden.

To make, select clean, dry cans from the waste pile and remove the lids. Watch for sharp edges. Depending on the look you want, you can use anything from a large coffee can down to a tuna can (although the latter might work better with a floating candle). Spray-paint your cans black or orange. Use the opposite color of poster board to cut out a variety of facial features

Read more

Andrew Gatt’s insanely simple hack for preventing kitchen spills goes viral

Cooking up a great hack! Man’s VERY simple hack for avoiding liquid drips in the kitchen goes viral

  • TikTok user Andrew Gatt shared the trick on the video-sharing app last week 
  • After pouring the eggs into the pan, he demonstrates how to put the bowl back on the counter without any of the leftover egg dripping down the sides 
  • Instead of simply righting it, he turns it all the way upside down and rights it on the opposite side, so the egg drips back into the bowl
  • The video has been viewed 1.7 million times so far 

Amateur home cooks who are tired of kitchen messes may be relieved to learn a seriously simple kitchen hack that keeps leftover liquid from spilling onto the counter.

TikTok user Andrew Gatt shared the trick on the video-sharing app last week while frying up some scrambled eggs on the stove.

After pouring the eggs into the pan, he demonstrated how to put the used bowl back down on the counter without any of the leftover egg dripping down the sides.

Ta-da! TikTok user Andrew Gatt shared a trick on the video-sharing app last week while frying up some scrambled eggs on the stove

Ta-da! TikTok user Andrew Gatt shared a trick on the video-sharing app last week while frying up some scrambled eggs on the stove

Next steps: After pouring the eggs into the pan, he demonstrates how to put the bowl back on the counter without any of the leftover egg dripping down the sides

'If I pour this egg into this pan and turn it back this way,' he says, gesturing to indicate turning the bowl back upwards in an expected way, 'and put it down on the counter, it's gonna drip down the side'

Next steps: After pouring the eggs into the pan, he demonstrates how to put the bowl back on the counter without any of the leftover egg dripping down the sides

Andrew’s video focuses in on the stove, and as it begins, he is finishing pouring a bowl of beaten eggs into a skillet.

But before he puts the empty bowl — which just has a bit of raw egg still clinging to it — back on the counter, he pauses to narrate.

‘If I pour this egg into this pan and turn it back this way,’ he says, gesturing to indicate turning the bowl back upwards in an expected way, ‘and put it down on the counter, it’s gonna drip down the side.’

‘And it’s gonna be on the outside,’ he says.

This would me a few droplets of egg — or whatever other liquid a person might have in a bowl after pouring — would end up on the counter and need to be cleaned up.

'If I continue to turn like this, the drip will go back into the bowl,' he says

Here, he demonstrates not setting the bowl back upward, but continuing to turn it until it's entirely upside down, then righting it in the other direction

‘If I continue to turn like this, the drip will go back into the bowl,’ he says, continuing to turn it until it’s entirely upside down, then righting it in the other direction

'I can put it on the counter and I don't have an extra mess to clean up on the counter,' he says, showing how the egg doesn't spill over the rim

‘I can put it on the counter and I don’t have an extra mess to clean up on the counter,’ he says, showing how the egg doesn’t spill over the rim

But, Andrew notes, there’s another way. 

‘If I continue to turn like this, the drip will go back into the bowl,’ he says.

Here, he demonstrates not setting the bowl back upward, but continuing to turn it until it’s entirely upside down, then righting it in the other direction.

‘I can

Read more

Home Improvement: Simple ways to improve a kitchen pantry – Salisbury Post

Metro Creative

People have been spending more time at home in 2020 than in years past, and certain projects around the house have become a priority. One home improvement idea that serves the double benefit of creating organization and making cooking at home more efficient is to reimagine the kitchen pantry. A pantry is a room or closet where food, beverages and linens or dishes are stored. Pantries can be highly useful spaces that provide ancillary storage in kitchens. Many modern homes are equipped with pantries, but older homes may require some modification to create more useful pantries. Whether starting from scratch or modifying an existing pantry, these tips can help projects go more smoothly.

• Maximize vertical storage. Utilizing vertical areas can help increase storage capacity. Build in extra nooks by investing in undershelf storage baskets. These baskets can instantly create designated areas for different types of ingredients. Homeowners also can look for ways to use the inside of cabinet doors or add extra shelves on walls or in eaves.

• Consider your needs. Figure out which items you would like to store in the pantry and then shop for corresponding storage systems. For example, storage solutions may feature wine bottle racks, baskets for potatoes and other produce, shelving for small appliances, and even pull out racks for baking pans or cutting boards.

• Use clear storage. Put ingredients in clear, airtight containers of similar dimensions so that you can easily find items you need. Transfer bulky items, like cereals and baking supplies, to storage containers for uniformity.

• Store bulk items elsewhere. Bulk shopping can be cost-efficient, but bulk items can quickly eat up real estate in the pantry. Designate another area for non-perishable bulk products, like paper goods or canned items, such as in a garage or utility room.

• Pull out drawers are convenient. Pull-out drawers can reduce the need to seek and reach for items. These drawers conveniently roll out so items in the back can be accessed without disturbing foods in the front. Drawers can be custom built for any pantry space.

• Make it accessible. Think about who will be taking items from the pantry. Put children’s snacks on the bottom pantry shelf where they can reach them, and then organize other shelves for adults in the home. A pantry remodel can add valuable storage space and make one of the busiest rooms in the house operate more efficiently.

Source Article

Read more

For the birds: Simple ways to make your garden take flight for winged friends

Even before spring officially arrives, the sweet coos of mourning doves and the songs of house wrens and common yellowthroat warblers can be heard early in the morning through windows left cracked open the night before. Those first musical trills of prodigal birds, likely exhausted from their migration from as far south as Central and South America, can make us feel simultaneously relaxed and energized — and elated that a new season is within reach.

But spring isn’t the only time of year we need think about birds. Although hundreds of bird species head to warmer climates in the fall, others, black-capped chickadees, cardinals and woodpeckers among them, remain to tough out the winter, trading the perils of migration for the hazards of harsh weather and the food scarcity that accompanies it.

As our perennials go dormant and deciduous trees shed their leaves, fruits and seeds disappear with them, as do insects, most of which either die or hibernate. But birds can adapt; some insect-eaters pivot to a berry-centric diet, and some grow extra feathers, then puff them out — essentially making their own parkas, trapping air between layers to create bubbles of warmth. Still, they can use our help.

Carefully choosing native plants for your garden will beef up the food chain, feeding insects that birds, in turn, will use to feed their chicks come spring. This is important because our native insects and wildlife evolved alongside our native plants, adopting them as diet staples. Many exotic plants, on the other hand, aren’t even recognized as food by North American insects and caterpillars, according to research published by University of Delaware entomologist and author Doug Tallamy.

What to choose

Our native oak trees, for example, support more than 500 species of insects, including butterflies and moths, he asserted in his 2007 book, “Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens,” which has since become the bible of the native plant movement. When in their caterpillar stage, those butterflies and moths are the primary food source for birds. The nonnative ginkgo tree from China, on the other hand, while often prized for being “pest free,” supports fewer than five.

Tallamy, who reminds us that baby birds do not eat seeds but rely solely on insects, has found that one nestful of chickadee hatchlings needs to consume 6,000 to 9,000 caterpillars en route to maturity. Without native plants that support those insects, we simply would not have birds.

In addition to trees and perennials, consider including evergreen shrubs and ground covers in your landscape; they’ll provide shelter and cover. And bushes that retain fruit or nuts over winter offer food, as well as something nice to look at when all else is barren.

Read more

FitWaffle Kitchen’s Eloise Head, 26, shares VERY simple recipe for five-ingredient Nutella brownies

The easiest ‘no bake’ treat yet: Home cook, 26, shares her VERY simple recipe for Nutella brownies – and you can make your own with five supermarket ingredients

  • Amateur baker Eloise Head, 26, is the founder of Instagram recipe page FitWaffle
  • She posts videos of decadent desserts that take just a few minutes to prepare
  • A recent clip shows viewers how to make Nutella brownies from five ingredients
  • Ms Head uses butter, icing sugar, biscuits, chocolate and the hazelnut spread
  • She says they are subtly ‘moreish’ and ‘addictive’ for anyone with a sweet tooth

A self-taught baker who built an online following of 682,000 during coronavirus lockdown has shared her simple recipe for Nutella brownies – with no oven required.

Eloise Head, 26, is the founder of FitWaffle Kitchen, an Instagram page where she posts videos of decadent desserts that take just a few minutes to prepare.

The amateur chef from London recently shared a tutorial showing viewers how to make a tray of ‘super delicious’ brownies with five basic ingredients.

Ms Head – who says the treats are ‘quick and easy to make’, even for beginners – uses 90g of plain biscuits, 250g of icing sugar, 120g of butter, 200g of white chocolate and 300g of the iconic chocolate and hazelnut spread.

Scroll down for video

The 'super delicious' brownies (pictured) can be made with butter, icing sugar, crushed plain biscuits, white chocolate and the iconic chocolate and hazelnut spread

The ‘super delicious’ brownies (pictured) can be made with butter, icing sugar, crushed plain biscuits, white chocolate and the iconic chocolate and hazelnut spread

‘These are super sweet, but not overpowering with Nutella flavour,’ she wrote in the caption, adding they are subtly ‘moreish’ and ‘addictive’ for anyone with a sweet tooth.

First, Ms Head mixes the crushed biscuits with melted butter and icing sugar, then adds 250g of Nutella until fully combined.

Next, she spoons the mix into a dish lined with baking paper, pressing down until flat.

Then she melts white chocolate in the microwave and pours it over the base, before melting the remaining 50g of Nutella and drizzling it on top.

Using the back of a palette knife, Ms Head swirls the chocolate liquid into a decorative pattern and leaves the tray in the fridge to set.

London baker Eloise Head, 26, who built a mammoth Instagram following of 682,000 during lockdown by sharing her simple tricks for making decadent desserts

These five-ingredient Nutella brownies are her latest viral creation to take social media by storm

London baker Eloise Head (left) built a mammoth Instagram following of 682,000 during lockdown by sharing her simple tricks for making decadent desserts (right)

Eloise Head’s Nutella brownies

Ingredients

90g plain biscuits (crushed)

250g icing sugar

120g butter (melted)

250g Nutella and 50g for topping

200g white chocolate

Method

1. Mix biscuits, butter and icing sugar.

2. Add 250g of Nutella and stir until fully combined.

3. Spoon mixture into a dish lined with baking paper, pressing down firmly.

4. Melt white chocolate and pour over the biscuit base.

5. Melt remaining 50g of Nutella and drizzle on top, running a palette knife through the liquid to create a decorative pattern.

6. Refrigerate until set.

The brownies (pictured) should be decorated with a drizzle of melted Nutella then refrigerated until set

The brownies (pictured) should be decorated with

Read more

Mother shares her VERY simple solution that leaves grimy bathroom tiles impossibly shiny in minutes

Mum shares her simple cleaning trick that leaves grimy bathroom tiles impossibly shiny in MINUTES – without a drop of toxic chemicals

  • When Carey Barling moved into her new rental, the bathroom floor was filthy
  • She scrubbed the tiles with hot water, sugar soap and dishwashing liquid
  • Her efforts transformed the floor from grimy to gleaming in minutes
  • The mother-of-two shared photos comparing the difference on Facebook
  • Her post has gone viral with one woman replying: ‘Now that’s what I call a clean!’

A mother’s homemade solution that leaves dirt-encrusted tiles impossibly shiny without a drop of toxic chemicals has attracted widespread praise on social media.

When Carey Barling moved into her new rental in southeast Queensland, the bathroom floor was filthy.

The mum-of-two immediately set about scrubbing the tiles with hot water, sugar soap and dishwashing liquid – transforming them from grimy to gleaming in minutes.

Photos comparing the difference have gone viral since they were shared in an Australian cleaning group on Facebook, with one woman replying: ‘Now that’s what I call a clean!’

Scroll down for video 

A mother transformed the filthy bathroom floor of her Queensland rental

With a simple solution of hot water, sugar soap and dishwashing liquid

A mother transformed the filthy bathroom floor of her Queensland rental (left) from grimy to gleaming (right) with a simple solution of hot water, sugar soap and dishwashing liquid

Ms Barling, who is expecting her third child, said she used a handheld scrubbing brush instead of a mop to achieve the impressive sheen.

‘I used a bit of a scrubby scrub, not with a long-handled floor scrub. I feel like it doesn’t do as good of a job as I do on my hands and knees,’ she said. 

And people were quick to praise her handiwork with comments including ‘so satisfying’, ‘top job’ and ‘you should be proud, looks stunning’.

‘This is amazing! Like a completely different floor,’ one woman said.

A second said: ‘Fantastic job! Pity it was in such an awful state to begin with.’

‘What a difference a little scrubbing does – look how beautiful the grout came up,’ added a third.

The tiles gleamed after just a few minutes of scrubbing with a handheld brush

The tiles gleamed after just a few minutes of scrubbing with a handheld brush

Ms Barling’s simple solution for sparkling tiles is the latest cleaning hack to catch attention on social media, following a mother’s budget-friendly trick for stopping plastic containers flipping and filling with water in the dishwasher.

Turned upside down, $7 drying racks from Kmart keeps loose lunchboxes and other utensils in place during the cleaning cycle, putting an end to splashback and spillages on the kitchen floor once and for all.

The hack – originally shared on Reddit and reposted in a cleaning group on Facebook – has gone viral, drawing dozens of comments like ‘fabulous suggestion’ and ‘this is brilliant, thanks for sharing’.

An upside down dish rack (pictured) can be used to secure loose containers in the dishwasher, preventing them flipping and filling with water during the cleaning cycle

An upside down dish rack (pictured) can be used to secure loose containers in the dishwasher, preventing them flipping and filling with water during the cleaning cycle

People

Read more

2022 Volkswagen ID4 EV Shows Off Its Simple, Tesla-Like Interior

A few months ago, we got a glimpse at the Volkswagen ID4 EV’s somewhat vanilla exterior. Well, it looks like the new electric car’s interior follows the same simple-is-better philosophy. In fact, we rather like the clean, uncluttered look, which reminds us of the Tesla Model 3’s pared-back cabin.

Like the most modern cars, the ID4 keeps the number of physical buttons at a minimum through a reliance on digital touchscreen displays. Both the instrument display—the ID4’s key difference from the Model 3 and Model Y, which lack a formal gauge cluster ahead of the driver—and the larger central touchscreen sit above the dashboard. The steering wheel, display housings, and control panels in the doors can be had in Piano Black or Electric White, depending on the buyer’s preference. Other noteworthy details? The brake pedal features a “pause” sign, and the accelerator features a “play” sign. Cheeky.

The Volkswagen ID4 will offer a fixed panoramic glass roof giving the cabin an airy feel. Also available is ambient interior lighting with 30 color choices, which is an easy way to spice up the plain interior. There’s another feature called ID Light, which is a light strip below the windscreen that signals whether the vehicle is locked or unlocked and notifies the driver of incoming calls. It also tells drivers if they need to brake to avoid a collision. Occupants sit up high in the ID4, and there are large door openings for easy access into the cabin. When the rear seats are up, the cargo bay measures 30.3 cubic feet, more than twice the amount of space offered in the Jetta sedan.

Volkswagen will fully unveil the ID4 on September 23. Hopefully by then, we’ll know all the U.S.-market specs. The first copies of the ID4 will hit dealerships in the U.S. by the end of the year, with the initial run of the small EV crossovers being imported from Europe initially. Eventually, copies for the U.S. will come from VW’s plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The ID4 will be sold across all 50 states through more than 600 VW dealers. Stay tuned for more details coming soon.

Source Article

Read more

Simple Ways to Improve Decor in Your Home

People often put a lot of effort in decorating the house because you want to live in a beautiful and comfortable house. If you start to get bored of the decoration, you can always make it fresh and exciting by making little changes. It is essential that you feel happy and refreshed in your house. The decorations do not always have to be expensive because several affordable decoration ideas can make your place look beautiful.

Here are some useful décor ideas that will make your house look gorgeous.

Adding corner shelves:

If you have bare walls in the house and you are finding it annoying, then you can decorate the wall and add smart storage space by adding corner shelves. These are an excellent way of getting the storage space that you need. The corner is mostly considered dead spaces and often end up empty. By adding corner shelves, you will not just cover these dead spaces but get a good storage space. You can put your books and other decorations on these shelves.

Decorating the front:

The front or entry is critical because it is responsible for creating the first image of the house. The front is the representation of your style, so it is important that you pay particular attention to it. Do not clutter the foyer space and try to maximize it. You can add little decorations such as baskets where you can put mail or house keys. You can also get a foyer sized table and put some beautiful flowers on it. The mirror is always an excellent addition to the foyer area.

Updating the furniture:

The best way of making the house look fresh is to upgrade the furniture with each season. You do not always have to spend a lot of money and buy new furniture to refresh the look. The affordable and best way of changing furniture for different seasons is used covers. They are available in an extensive variety of colors, materials, styles and designs. You can experiment with different colors and options before finding the best one and most suitable one.

Changing the layout of furniture:

It is possible for you to become bored with the layout of the room then you can change it. Moving around the furniture can have a significant effect on the outlook of the place, and it does not cost anything. You need to find a focal point and change the decorations accordingly. You should also try to get rid of some items so that the place does not look cluttered. It will provide you more open space and will look tidy.

Painting the walls:

One of the most affordable ways of refreshing the look of the house is painting it fresh. You can always add an accent wall with bold colors to make the place look exciting and beautiful. You should choose a color that compliments the color of furniture and other accessories. If you are not sure about the color, then you can always …

Read more

7 Simple Interior Decorating Tips and Ideas

Interior decorating for quite some time has been a concept or task left to the interior decorator.

But because people nowadays are becoming more and more aware and involved in the interior decorating aspects of their homes, there are many homeowners that are forced into adopting their own interior decorating techniques and processes.

Home or interior decorating, as wrongly perceived by people ages ago, need not be expensive and need not requiring degrees and diplomas in the discipline.

Overall, the idea behind interior decorating is going for the basic or going for the simple. Being interiorly designed and comfortable, a home does not need to be really equipped with the most expensive devices and equipment.

Remember, the basic idea of interior decorating is functionality and usage. It is to be put above all, above the aesthetic and beauty of the home.

Interior decorating of homes can be as simple as one, two, three. Here are some practical and very simple solution on how the interior design of your home could be improved and boosted.

1. Free up spaces. Throw away unnecessary items and equipment. Old equipment that already obsolete or useless should already put to retirement.

2. The storage room is the room for decorations that are not in season or timely. Christmas decors should be kept out it is already March.

3. Make the home spacious by freeing it from useless materials and equipment. Huge sofas and tables are also a no-no if the space of your home is already limited.

4. Put out all the small figurines and picture frames that are distracting the atmosphere and scaring them, instead of awing and amusing them. Those are old-styles, the modern interior decoration go for less displays. Less is totally more this time.

5. Consider replacing carpets, or putting one in the living room if there is not already one in place. That would provide for a cozy atmosphere.

6. The kitchen should be clean and well-lighted because it is the most important area in the house. It should be painted with light to even darker colors to make up for a more appetizing atmosphere.

7. The bathroom should still be spacious. Remember functionality, uses are more than aesthetics.

Interior designing a house need not be really tedious. Just follow your instinct and remember, functions come ahead of beauty. Good luck!…

Read more

Bathroom Accessories – Simple and Elegant Solution

Bathroom accessories help you to beautify the look of your bathroom. It is a place where you spent most of your time in morning and so it needs to be pleasant and comfortable. It is important that you clearly understand how you can change the look of this place, making it more attractive and comfortable with the right products. You can keep it organized and clutter free by using proper accessories. By utilizing the available space properly, you can create storage in walls, under the sink, behind mirror and doors. Decorating your bathroom is not difficult, but you need to pay a little attention before selecting the accessories.

With the increasing demand for bathroom accessories, there are multiple choices available in terms of faucets, stands, rods, curtains, bathroom sets and other decorative units. There is great demand for contemporary units which can enhance the look of any modern washroom. There is a whole range of designs from small to large that can add style and flair to the décor. Manufacturers have realized the growing needs for these units and are trying to make every amenity within the reach of the user. The norms on which these products are designed meets today's fast paced lifestyle, where people have no excessive time for cleaning. Also these units represent the needs of the fashion conscious crowd where the look and style are very important. We all face space constrain, keeping in mind this problem these units are designed in such a way that they would not occupy too much of space and offer great functionality.

The assortment of bathroom accessories give varied uses. They come in all shapes, sizes, colors and designs which can blend with any modern to classic décor. The price spectrum of these units is as wide as the choices available. There are simple basic units which are usually made of plastic that costs less while other high end units, like designer pieces which are usually made of glass, chrome and stainless steel are expensive. It is up to you to decide what kind of units you want to buy for your home or establishment, depending on your need and budget.

They are also available with different themes to match with the theme of your bathroom. The most common ones are underwater sea creatures, corals and floral types. Many homeowners like to decorate this place by using bathroom accessories which come in sets and are usually designed with the same theme. This gives the bathroom a sense of luxury and a kind of high end appearance in more ways than one. They are also available in fun kid's design that makes it appealing for the children to carry out their morning routines. Colorful images and accessories of their favorite characters can make it attractive for the kids. There are many soap dishes and tooth brush holders found in animal shapes which are liked by most of the kids.

With the right kind of bathroom accessories like brush holders, soap dispensers, …

Read more