Archive | March, 2012

Choosing the Right Furniture for Your Child’s Room

29 Mar

When it comes to designing your child’s bedroom, fun and function should be the two primary considerations.  Furniture is a large element in any design, and there are certain things you might want to consider when picking the right pieces for your child.  Below are some excellent tips and suggestions to keep in mind…

  • Children know where they want to sleep, so when it comes to their bedroom set, narrow down the options and then let them decide.  They are the ones that will be sleeping in the bed night after night, so be sure they are comfortable and will be able to sleep well.
  • Fancy make look dandy, but until when?  Your little boy may love to sleep in a toy car bed now, but how long will that remain true?  When purchasing a bed, keep the “shelf life” in mind.  If you don’t mind buying another bed a few years down the road, let your child choose the most colorful, frilliest bed they can find.  If you’re looking for something with staying power, look for more classic designs.
  • Kids can be rowdy, so make their furniture can endure it.  Select bedroom furniture that is sturdy enough to last a long time, despite occasional rowdy play, by choosing a material that is strong and known to have staying power.
  • Keep your child’s health in mind, too!  If options are available to you, choose a material that is eco-friendly and non-toxic, so your child is not at risk of being exposed to chemically-infused materials while sleeping.
  • Colors are fun, but just be sure they match!  One of the things that is so fun about designing a child’s room is having the ability to use colors you may not normally use in the rest of your house.  Go wild….but just be sure the colors coordinate.
  • Use appropriate colors. Choose colors based on what your child will enjoy and what you think is appropriate for their age/gender.  To help you with color selection, ask your kids what color they want for their walls.  If you are designing a room for a newborn, look through magazines for nursery ideas.
  • Set a budget for your child’s bedroom. We can tend to get a little out of hand when it comes to buying things for our children because we want what is best for them and what will make them happy. However, that can leave us with empty pockets if left unbridled. Set a budget and stick to it…..it will help you maximize your money and will likely result in more creative ideas.
  • Remember safety! Ultimately, your child’s safety is the most important thing, so be cognizant of sharp edges, height, etc. when shopping for furniture.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

Edmond Youth Volunteers Hosts Animal Adoption Carnival

27 Mar

An animal adoption carnival is soon to be held in Edmond, Oklahoma to benefit not only the shelter but also the animals and, yes, the people who will be participating in the event. On April 21, Edmond Involved will be hosting an animal adoption carnival that will benefit the Edmond Animal Shelter.

Edmond Involved is a youth volunteer program in the city of Edmond where the youth in the city are given the chance to directly offer their services to assist the community at large. The volunteer program provides several community service projects like food drives and planting trees.

One of their service projects is the animal adoption carnival that will also serve as a fundraising event for the Edmond Animal Shelter. This program will not only give monetary benefit to the shelter but will also provide new homes to the lost animals and help to create long-lasting happiness for the new pet owners.

The animal adoption carnival will be held at the Hafer Park from 11 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon on April 21. There will be a raffle for those who are participating as well as drinks and snacks for purchase. Those who plan to adopt a dog or cat will need to pay a fee of $25. Animals ready for adoption are already spayed and have completed their age-appropriated vaccinations.

 

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

Tips for Disinfecting Your Home

26 Mar

Germs inside your home can become dangerous if left unaddressed because they can lead to allergies and illness in you and your family. Needless to say, it is a very important to take the time to disinfect our home in order to prevent germs from spreading.
Below are some tips on how you can create a germ-free, safe environment in your home:

  • Make cleaning a habit. Deep cleanse every area of the house at least twice each month. For places you and your family use frequently, clean two or three times each week.  In addition to using a good disinfectant, also be sure to use clean sponges and brushes.
  • Wash dirty linens immediately, especially if they have been contaminated by food.
  • Use a reliable disinfectant spray on your countertops and food preparation areas.  Scrub the contaminated area thoroughly with a sponge or soft brush and then rinse it with water to be sure chemicals aren’t remaining when food touches it the next time.
  • Replace sponges frequently. Sponges are prone to collecting germs, and the more you use them, the more germs they will gather. So, if you use an old sponge to clean a counter, you’re not actually cleaning it, but rather contaminating it.  Replace your cleaning sponges after using them a few times and put them in the trash outside.
  • Use separate sponges and cleaning agents for your kitchen and bathroom. Do not try to use the same sponge or brush for all of your cleaning activities because it will only increase the chances of cross-contamination.
  • Don’t forget to clean handles, doorknobs, and small crevices.  These are often the places where germs are most prevalent, so make it a habit to spray them with a good disinfectant spray regularly.
  • Clean your floors.  For hard surfaces, sweet and then clean with a wet mop.  Afterward, dry the floor with a rag to remove any additional dirt and prevent muddy footprints if people walk across it.  For carpet, vacuum for thorough cleaning.
  • Naturally kill germs inside the house by opening your windows and letting the sunlight to come in and the fresh air to circulate.
  • Use natural ingredients like baking soda and various oils in your cleaning agents to help disinfect the area and get rid of odors.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

Edmond And Edmond Electric Received Special Recognitions For Tree City USA

20 Mar

In Edmond, certain trees are especially important and give recognition to organizations that help to bring trees into their modern cities and developments, the Tree City USA is giving awards to selected cities, Air Force bases and public utilities that honor and follow through with the goal of planting more trees for the community. Twenty three cities, two Air Force bases and five public utilities were awarded last week as a Tree City USA in Oklahoma for this year. The city of Edmond and Edmond Electric were among the recognized cities and public utilities.

The Edmond Tree Board and the Edmond Electric Tree Board received special recognition last week at the state Capitol in Oklahoma City for their tree care programs. The city of Edmond has been designated as a Tree City USA community while Edmond Electric was recognized as the Tree Line USA utility.

For more than thirteen years, Edmond has been participating in the Tree City USA program. The City had planted around 61 trees in its Foster-A-Tree Program as well as partnering with the Edmond Land Conservancy in pushing through its green infrastructure initiatives. Edmond also sponsored a new Arbor Week poster contest and hiring a utility forester for the Edmond Electric, earning the city a special Growth Award.

For Edmond Electric, it had been dubbed a Tree Line USA utility for more than twelve years. The public utility in Edmond had also helped in sponsoring the statewide Arbor Week Celebration as well as sponsoring a Tree Voucher Tree Planting Program.

 

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

How to Keep Ants Out of Your House

19 Mar

An army of ants trailing throughout your home can present a huge problem. Many homeowners, for example, come home to their pantries to find their food swarmed by ants, and as a result, they have no other choice but to throw it all away.

If you’re battling ant problems at home, below are several effective solutions for how to get rid of them.

  • Always store your food safely in a tight container or sealed cabinet. Ants are attracted to foods that are left out and/or stored in unsecured packaging.
  • Clean your kitchen. Do not leave crumbs of bread or other food bits on your counter or lying on the floor.  Particles are open invitations for ants.
  • Keep your garbage cans outside your house because ants seek out areas with spoiled food.  If you do have garbage cans inside your house, make sure to seal them tightly and switch out the bags regularly so spoiled food doesn’t build up for extended periods of time.
  • Prevent ants from coming into your house by using mint and citrus. Ants usually avoid citrus scents, so cleaning your house with citrus oil will ward them off. You can also place mint plants around your house to accomplish the same thing.
  • Get rid of the scouts before they go back to their colony. Scouts of ants are often sent by their colonies to check for food sources. Once they see one, they will go back to their colony and lead their friends to the food using a scent trail. If you find an ant or several ants trailing each other, kill them immediately. Spray them with an all purpose cleaning solution and wipe them away.
  • Seal all possible ant entrance areas to your home. Use caulking, glue, or plaster to make sure that entry points are obstructed.
  • Occasionally sprinkle coffee beans throughout your house. Ants do not like the scent of them.
  • Trap them. You can use bait with a solution that will instantly kill the ants and their nest.  Make a small cake or pie with a mixed soap solution that will entice ants to take pieces of it to their nest. Just make sure your family members, especially the kids, know to not eat the pastry.
  • Create barriers near your food that ants cannot cross. Chalk lines are effective barriers and so are citrus oil, baby powders, cinnamon, and turmeric.

 

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

How to Increase Your Smoke Detector’s Effectiveness

15 Mar

House fires are very common.  On a small scale, they can ruin a few items, but on a large scale, they can burn your entire home to the ground.  That is a devastating thought not only because you would be temporarily homeless and lose all of your things, but there is also the risk that someone could be harmed during the fire.  It is, therefore, very important to install proper fire detection devices in your home to minimize the risk of something like that happening.

Smoke detectors are one of the simplest and most common ways to detect fire inside a home.  To ensure that the alarms on your smoke detectors are working effectively, here are some useful tips to follow:

  • Regularly check and test your smoke detectors.  You hope that they will never have to go off, but you need to be sure they will function properly to alert you should a fire occur.
  • Buy smoke detectors that are by brand names or testing laboratories that you know produce quality products.
  • Choose smoke alarms that not only project auditory alarms, but also vibrations and light warnings. This is especially important for elderly people or individuals with hearing loss, who may have troubling hearing the alarm if it goes off.
  • If possible, install a smoke detector in every room of the house.  You have no way of anticipating where a fire might start, and a smoke detector will alert you of fires in any room, including those that you may not otherwise have noticed right away.
  • Avoid installing smoke alarms in areas where there is draft. These areas typically reduce the effectiveness of the equipment.
  • Make sure your smoke detectors work 24/7. Do not attempt to borrow the batteries of your smoke detector to use in something else, even if only for a short time.
  • Do not try to remove the batteries out of your detectors when you experience a false alarm. Often, smoke alarms can be triggered by steam from the shower or from smoke while you’re cooking. It may be annoying if there is a false alarm, but just fan the smoke detector until it goes off  or use the silencing feature – do NOT disable it.
  • Replace the batteries in your smoke detector whenever the alarm starts to chirp.  That means that the batteries are dying.  Also, replace any smoke detectors that are 10 years old or more with new ones.
  • Remember to dust your smoke detectors because they are prone to dust, cobwebs, and other debris.
  • Do not install detectors in areas in which they will be covered (i.e. in a cabinet).

 

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031

Oklahoma City Residents Receive Storm Cellar Rebates

13 Mar

More than 500 residents in Oklahoma City will soon be receiving a rebate of $2,000, officials recently said. Selected homeowners are eligible for the $2,000 storm cellar rebate for their installation of storm shelter in their homes.

According to City Officials of Oklahoma City, about 504 homeowners will be notified as qualified recipients to receive a federal grant of $2,000.  Frank Barnes, City Emergency Manager, said that city officials selected homeowners that can use the money in preparation for future emergencies. The federal hazard mitigation grant money is offered by the national government to all states after disasters to aid them in preparing for future mishaps.

Nearly 3,300 residents of Oklahoma City applied for the rebates however only 504 people were chosen via a lottery. These selected homeowners were, nevertheless, distributed evenly in the eight wards of the city. Some of the applicants were not qualified because of the location of their property. These are houses that are located in designated flood plains. Others are in historic districts.

Barnes said that the $2,000 rebate will be able to pay for about 75 percent of the overall cost of the installed storm cellar. Prior to installation, homeowners were made to select the types of storm cellar or safe rooms that were already approved by the city officials and apply for permission approval for installation.

Jennifer Fields
Oklahoma City & Edmond Real Estate Agent
405.330.0031