Outfit Your Garden Area with a Potting Shed

fdzhgtfjA potting shed is an outbuilding designated specifically for gardening tasks. That includes, but certainly isn’t limited to, potting and re-potting plants, starting seedlings, hardening off seedlings before planting them outdoors, and tool storage and maintenance. While different gardeners have different gardening needs, there are a few must-have amenities that everybody should be sure to incorporate into their plans.

New or Used?
The truth is just about any structure can be turned into a good potting shed. If you’ve got an old outbuilding on your property, it’s certainly worth exploring if it can be adapted to your gardening needs. In most cases it’s a fairly easy transformation. If you’re starting from scratch, you still have several options. Any common backyard shed of the kit or pre-fabricated variety can easily be modified into a perfect garden shed. And if you like to dream big, you can have your shed custom built (or designed) to meet your every whim and desire.

Windows and Natural Light
One of the main reasons a potting or garden shed is different than that backyard Tuff Shed your neighbor owns is light. Remember, your potting shed isn’t just a storage area. The idea is to build yourself a sheltered place where you can pass hours at a time doing valuable work, whether it’s spring, summer, fall, or even winter. Make sure your shed has several large windows that let in enough light to make it inviting and functional. And if you’re interested in transforming your shed into a greenhouse of sorts, you can incorporate a plexiglass roof or wall-window into the design. Doing so will let in more light, trap in heat, and help create a shed that is at least a three season structure.

Who Says You Can’t Garden in the Dark?
If you can run electricity to your shed, do it. Once you’ve been bit by the gardening bug, you rarely want to quit when the sun sets. Having a large fluorescent fixture hung over your potting bench means you can keep going until the days chores are done, sunlight or not. And when you’re working with delicate seedlings and root balls, you’ll be glad to have the extra light even in the daytime.

7 Steps to a Backyard Playground for Kids

gfzjmgkA yard offers enough room for kids to explore and grow without being too far from supervision. Installing a home playground is one way to encourage children to exercise and have fun outdoors. As with anything, however, the best backyard playgrounds are those that have been properly planned out. When changing the landscape of your yard to be more kid-friendly, there are a few things to consider.

1. Don’t Skimp on Open Play Areas
One thing that some homeowners might forget when planning a home playground is to leave enough open space. A spacious, flat, grassy area that lends itself well to a wide range of sports and play activities is essential. You could also consider installing synthetic grass in the play area. It’s durable, designed to be realistic, and maintenance-free. Open play areas allow for a wide variety of games from badminton to tag. A few trees around the perimeter of the yard are also a plus. Besides offering some shade, trees can serve as bases, hiding places, and net supports.

2. Home Playground Containment
Fences are the most common solution for keeping children in one area and discouraging strangers from entering your yard. If your neighborhood has restrictions on fencing, consider hedges and stone or brick walls as attractive alternatives.

Fencing is essential around swimming pools and other hazards if small children are regularly playing in the yard. Fencing can also help keep toys and bikes in one area, reducing the amount of wear and tear on plants and grass throughout your yard.

3. Specialized Playground and Sport Areas
Specialized play areas can be built for relatively low costs. A wide, paved area can be made into a basketball court with the addition of a hoop. Masonry paint can convert a walkway into a shuffleboard or hopscotch court.

One of the most valuable specialized play areas is also the simplest: a small patch of plain dirt. From playing with trucks and shovels, to making mud pies, plain old dirt can be the source of countless hours of creative fun. A sandbox is an alternative to a dirt patch. Though easier on clothes, it requires considerably more maintenance.

There is a wide variety of playground equipment with slides, swings, bars, and ropes. Choose equipment that doesn’t require much maintenance. The more you spend, the more important it is to choose equipment that is compatible with the changing desires and needs of children as they progress from toddlers to pre-teens. One option for older kids is to let them design and build wooden ramps for practicing stunts on in-line skates, skateboards, or bikes.

4. Dramatic Slopes Make Home Playgrounds More Fun
Never underestimate the power of a hill when it comes to creating a home playground. If you don’t have a slope or hill, you can easily have one graded in your yard. King-of-the hill, sledding, rolling, and star-gazing are just a few of the activities inspired by a simple slope, and your kids will certainly be able to add to that list with the help of their friends and a little imagination!

5. Outbuildings and Hideaways
Another spark for the natural creativity of children is a small, enclosed, room-like structure. While a formal playhouse is great, less elaborate structures can work just as well. A carport attic, tool shed, under deck area, garage, or gazebo will do the job, though nothing quite beats a tree house for pure adventure.

6. Home Playground Durability
Creating kid-happy spaces in your landscaping is pointless if it is filled with fragile, precious plants that you worry about being damaged. So if you want some delicate or valuable plants, isolate them from the play areas. Kids are rough on grass, so plant a variety that is hearty enough to take a pounding. This may also mean extra watering, fertilizing and weed and pest control. It is also a good idea to avoid the use of toxic chemicals and take precautions to minimize exposure to even supposedly safe chemicals.

7. For Summer Playgrounds, Just Add Water
From elaborate facilities such as in-ground swimming pools to simple lawn sprinklers, a little water makes the backyard appealing even during the hottest months of summer vacation. Temporary structures like inflatable pools and “slip and slides” offer portability and eliminate the challenges of protecting equipment from the ravages of winter.

There are dozens of ways to convert even the most modest yard into a healthy home playground that will delight your children for years. All it takes is a little imagination (which your kids will happily supply) and a bit of grown-up planning.

Garage Floor Coverings

ghkuglkA garage floor covering isn’t the top floor covering priority in a home, but putting in a floor for your garage has real benefits. You may not be concerned with creating a beautiful garage floor, but the fact is your garage floor is likely to incur abuse unlike anywhere else in your home. Automotive fluids can leak from your car staining the floor and creating an unseemly smell. At the very least, snow and/or grime is probably going to begin to migrate into your garage.

Contaminated garage floors can also contribute to accidents. If you use your garage as a workshop, you may need to install a garage floor covering just to be safe and reduce the chance of slipping. Of course, you can always just lay down mats to fix this problem, but more advanced floor coverings will give you total floor coverage and a more permanent, reliable garage floor.

Paint v. Epoxy for Your Garage Floors
The cheapest garage floor covering is simply a coat of paint. Paint will provide a layer of moderate protection for your garage floor and improve its overall look, but painted garage floors, as you might imagine, don’t last very long. You should plan on repainting once a year, maybe more, to achieve any kind of consistent protection or look.

A better investment of your time and money is probably epoxy. Epoxy costs more than paint and the surface of your garage floor will have to be prepared to ensure a quality finish. Properly applied epoxy will give your garage a showroom-like finish, a greater amount of protection, and will be significantly more durable than paint. Because of the need for surface preparation, epoxy is a great idea for new garages. The potent chemical composition of epoxy requires safe ventilation and a multistage application process. Plus, you’ll need to make sure your garage doesn’t get wet if slipping is a concern.

Tile and Permanent Garage Floor Coverings
Neither paint nor epoxy can offer the benefits of a garage floor tile. Tile is going to be more expensive, but professionally installed tile should give you a garage floor you can trust for several years, at least. Interlocking tiles can decrease the cost of installation or high-end tiles can give an unmatched look to your garage. Floor tiles should be able to be laid down right on top of your concrete, so long as the concrete is in reasonable condition. The biggest difference between garage floor tiles and tiles you might use inside your home is the adhesive you use. Garage floor tiles don’t require the same additives that are frequently needed for interior home use.

Garage Renovations and Uses
Garages are typically designed to protect your automobile, but this doesn’t mean you have to use it for this. If you have a car that’s five years old and/or live in a more mild climate, you might find that there are better things you can do with your garage space than sheltering your ’03 Ford Taurus. Installing a tile floor or staining your concrete can allow you to place a small pool table, ping pong table, or card table in your garage and convert the space into an entertainment area. You might also want to upgrade your insulation, windows, lighting, or walls to create a livable space. You’ll be rewarded, as these renovations are often worth the trouble. Double garages, in particular, are good candidates for these types of conversions. By installing the right garage floor covering, you can park one or two cars in your garage for most of the week and pull them out to the driveway and setup for poker night.

Protecting Your Investment By Installing Door Alerts

When you own a business like a store, you are most likely on the go continuously when you are at work. If you are just starting out you will be limiting the number of other employees you have until you get your business off the ground. Because of this you are having to do most of the work around the store such as customer service, ordering products, stocking shelves and bookkeeper by yourself. In a situation such as this you may be in the back room getting boxes of product, or doing book work, when customers enter your store. You have no way of knowing that someone has entered so you are completely unaware of their arrival. To make sure your customers get immediate attention or to protect your safety, you may want to consider installing a door alert to let you know when someone else has arrived.

These kinds of systems come with different types of features depending on which you choose to purchase and install. One possible choice would be an electric eye laser also know as an infra red door entry alert. This type of alert is an invisible point to point that is installed across from each other. When the laser that goes between the two relays is broken by someone walking through the eye beam line, it will activate a sensor that sets off a chime or buzzer to let you know someone has entered the store. An alert will go off in a back room or anywhere you choose it to be installed. Other kinds you may choose from can be motion sensor or open door sensor. The choice of which to purchase is your decision based on your business needs.

No matter which product you choose to purchase and install, you are doing so to better your business by ensuring that a customer is not left unacknowledged for long periods of time. This same type of process can keep your employees and yourself safe from unknown intruders. Once you have purchased the product you have available to you both product support and warranty information should you have a problem during installing your new alert system. The company you purchase it from is there for you to ensure the product is working correctly and to protect your business. Be sure to contact door alert company as soon as possible for your own piece of mind.

Why the Home You Build on a Firm Foundation Might FallPrecisely Why the Place You Engineered on a Firm Foundation May well Fall

In case your residence is built having a great footing – one that will stay solid – it is going to endure eternally, supposing you care for it effectively and then total disasters not withstanding. However, apart from a leaky roofing, few things need as quick treatment in the home service department like a crumbled support foundation. In the event that adequate legitimate injury is found but not mended, the home’s genuine integrity may be breached. Warning signs of foundation damage incorporate visible splits inside the footing, walls which pooch as well as bow, windows and doors that may adhere, or humidity out of the blue appearing in a cellar or crawl space when it never was there before. In cases where you actually notice virtually any of these points, you really will likely to call out a company that actually does Foundation Repairs to help you have a look.

It can certainly appear a kind of head scratcher the way a home that did already have a sound foundation can easily get rid of it, but it is actually somewhat commonplace. In most cases, support foundation issues occur if the land surface underneath the support foundation moves. This may take place as a result of an earthquake, as a result of loss of normal amounts in the groundwater within aquifers underneath the surface of the earth become exhausted. The ground additionally moves if the soil incorporate a substantial amount of clay, and increases at times involving rain fall, and then reduces during times of drought. Additional information with regards to fundamentals along with their random need for repair at https://www.rebelmouse.com/FrankFoundation/a-foundation-repair-saved-the–484802935.html.

The Happiest Blog Site on the World Wide Web

Does it ever seem to you that every working day there exists a lot more tension, depression, heart ache and brutality in the world compared to how much there seemed to be the previous day? In the 1950’s, the very world had just emerged away from a damaging world battle, and yet that period of time, compared to our own, looks pleasant if compared to the horrible things taking place nowadays. Consider, for example, simply new media headlines – beheadings, war, droughts, shootings, gang hatred, racial worries – the list is limitless. Wouldn’t it be nice if, as opposed to logging onto your personal computer to generally be promptly swamped with all the globe’s maladies, an individual as an alternative could find the web counterpart of a lovely saved tea room where by soft tracks play, aromatic tapers burn low and absolutely everyone smiles at the other person and additionally shares just great news?

Your desires have been given as www.thelettersinnovember.com. This particular heart warming feel good website does simply that – it can make visitors feel much better. It is just a destination to visit every day as soon as your activity decelerates. Strain yourself an actual pot of green tea, get comfy using your laptop computer and then prepare to go in a milder world. Investigate an upbeat, kind and additionally nurturing blog site written by Kulasa, a female whom is wearing quite a few hats: wife of a law enforcement officer, caring mom, healer by vocation, law pupil and motivational, beneficial and encouraging blogger. Each and every category will be intriguingly marked “letters” and each area of correspondence reads like it were being composed privately for you. It would not be an exaggeration to imply that http://www.thelettersinnovember.com features a distinct feel than just about any repository regarding creating on the web. It truly is innovative, it is refreshing, and you’re going to adore it!

Are you currently a wife at home, having a heart with regard to family and home? Check out those letters. Do you find yourself, at the same time a good healer, or considering gaining better wellness? There is a area to suit your needs, too. Possibly travel can be your thing. Or perhaps searching. Or even food items! As well as, all of the above! Browsing upon www.TheLettersInNovember.com is much like going to a fabulous smorgasbord … there will be something for everybody, and its nothing but good. Best of all, it is possible to turn back for seconds, or maybe thirds … and then all the letters tend to be constantly truly being increased. Point your own favorite browser in direction of http://thelettersinnovember.com, and locate yourself a tiny something special, today!

Hair Straighteners – Choosing the Best Value

If you are looking for a hair straightener that does an effective job of straightening your hair, then you should consider royale hair straighteners. These hair straighteners are made of high quality materials, which means they are better for you hair. These straighteners also use technology that can decrease the damage to your hair. Many hair straighteners leave your hair dry and damaged, but a Royale straightener will not do that.

The reason Royale straighteners are better for your hair is that they use ionic field technology. This technology helps seal your hair’s natural oils within the hair, which keeps it from drying out and protects it from heat damage. If the straightener you are using now is leaving your hair damaged, then you need to get rid of it. Once your hair is damaged, it can be extremely difficult to repair, so it is best to stop the damage as soon as you can. Another great feature that these straighteners have is temperature control. High temperatures can be very bad for your hair, but with temperature control, you never have to worry about the temperature being any higher than you need it to be.

Overall, these hair straighteners are considered to be high quality. People love them because they can get the quality you would get from an expensive hair straightener without having to pay the price. These straighteners are affordable for the average person and last a very long time. They also give a salon quality look while also helping you maintain the health of your hair.

Choosing a hair straightener is usually not easy to do because there are so many to choose from. Unless you do your research, you could end up paying a lot of money for a straightener that simply is not worth it. Nobody wants to pay a lot of money for something that is going to end up in the trash, so it is best to buy the best in the first place. When you buy a Royale you already know the quality is going to be good, so you will not be wasting your money.

Rules To Make Interior Painting Faster and Cleaner

On your next within painting project, religiously follow these Hingham Massachusetts painter straightforward rules and that i guarantee that you simply can save a minimum of two hours. Here we tend to go!
1. Slosh Your Brush Before Painting; Clean-Up are going to be Easier.

Before painting, slosh your brush in no matter solvent you may be exploitation at the top of the day to scrub the comb (i.e., water for latex, mineral spirits for oil, etc.) it’s going to be easier to scrub once you are done.
2. Wrap Brush or Roller To Avoid cleansing.

Cleaning paintbrushes is tough work. And it’s not possible to scrub paint rollers. Some folks wash them out, however I realize this to be therefore frustrating and mussy, that I simply through them out.

If you recognize you will be returning to your paint work before long–a few hours or up to a few|a handful|some} of days–you will either do either of two things:

* Deepfreeze|electric refrigerator|fridge} Method:  Wrap the comb or roller in a very bag and place within the freezer. this could preserve the comb or roller indefinitely.
* Wrap-Only Method:  If you do not the thought of golf stroke brushes in a very food zone, you’ll be able to still wrap them in plastic and keep outside at temperature. simply check that the plastic is airtight. this could preserve the comb or roller for the remainder of the day. you would possibly even be ready to push it to the subsequent day, if the wrap is incredibly tight.

3. Latex Gloves or Lotion create It Easier to scrub Your Hands.

Latex gloves square measure nice for keeping your hands clean (especially if you are exploitation oil-based paint!). If you cannot stand latex gloves or square measure allergic, a thick application of lotion before painting can create cleansing lots easier afterward.

4. Maintain a Wet Edge To Avoid Overlap Marks.

Always keep a wet edge as you paint, and work faraway from that wet edge. If you paint over a dry edge, you may get overlap marks.
5. Avoid low cost Roller Covers and Brushes

Cheap roller covers leave fuzz on the wall. low cost brushes leave streaked brush marks. Avoid those multi-packs of rollers, 10 for a dollar.

Pay the additional few cents and obtain higher tools. it’s going to be worthwhile. Honest it’ll.
6. take a look at For Loose Paint With the adhesive tape take a look at.

Will the present painted surface take new paint? And hold it for years to come? take a look at this out by adhering a strip of adhesive tape to the present painted surface and…ripping it away. If flakes of paint quite microscopic size come back off, you will have to be compelled to scrape and sand.
7. Low-Stick adhesive tape may be a Miracle Product.

Also called “blue tape,” this tape comes off easier and does not peel off primer or existing paint. Blue tape, by itself, can prevent a minimum of Associate in Nursing hour of frustration over the old-style beige adhesive tape.
8. Rein in Your Paint opener By golf stroke a Leash thereon.

Paint will openers, those very little metal keys (you do use one, do not you?) square measure ill-famed for obtaining lost within the shuffle. Chain it to alittle chunk of wood rather like a public lavatory key. no matter you are doing, simply do not lose it!
9. Follow Painting method to create Job Cleaner.

Paint during this order:

a. Ceiling
b. Walls
c. Trim
d. Cabinets
e. Doors

And bear in mind to continually paint from top-down!

Water Damage Clean Up Tips When You Have Water Damage in Your Home or Business

If you are reading this most likely you have had or have water damage in your home or business. It may be as small as a water stain on your wall (in till in causes mold damage) or as large as a whole room, basement, whole house or a couple of floors in a building. The following tips will assist you in what to do when you have water damage. Please remember that these tips are just guidelines and good judgment should be used when trying to restore water damage. If you feel you need help contact your Cincinnati Ohio water damage restoration Company .

Here are the following more major important tips when water damage occurs:

1. Wear puncture resistant boots and puncture resistant gloves. This will protect you from electric shock and sharp objects( you will see later what I mean)

2. As soon as possible extract as much water from the area as possible( I know this is obvious but I needed to state this you don’t know who may be reading)

3. Lift all furniture from the floors on to wood blocks. Professionals use Styrofoam blocks but most readers don’t have Styrofoam available. Go to a hardware store and ask for scraps. 2 x 4 are the best to use. There may be furniture to heavy to pick up and that may be a time to contact an IICRC water damage professional.

4. Pick up any loose items on the floor (clothes, toys, etc).

5. Lift the carpet off the tacks strips very carefully. The tacks strips that hold the carpet down have sharp nails and can cut you easily (listen to the guy who has experienced this first hand). Also the tack strips have been down in many cases for years and are rusted. Rust nails can mean tetanus. Now you see what a mean by using puncture resistance gloves. Also if you take the carpet up incorrectly you may (actually most of the time) also tear the bottom of the carpet. Tearing the bottom of the carpet means you can’t reinstall the carpet later, which means you just bought new carpet.

6. After you have lifted the carpet remove the wet padding (just the wet padding and dispose of it). Why remove the padding? Because it will take days longer to dry possibly ruining the carpet and creating mold.

7. When the padding has been removed spray an antimicrobial to slow down the growth of mold and mildew microbes. Remember I said slowl down microbial growth not prevent it or remove it. Antimicrobials are designed to slow the possibility of growth, but in a short period of time those microbes and mold spores will grow again.

8. So to prevent microbial growth from growing or more important mold growth you need to completely dry out the wet effected area. Now you may think that the carpet is the only thing that is wet, but inside the drywall and behind the wall base may also be wet. Just touching the wall and the base is not enough. Your wall that looks “bone” dry may be wet behind the paint or drywall. You’ll need moisture detection equipment to see if it is wet. To do this you’ll need to purchase moisture detection equipment (quickly you only have 48 hours from the start of the water damage or mold will grow) or you’ll need to contact a IICRC water damage Restoration Company.

9. Once you have determined that the areas are wet (walls and carpet), you’ll need to bring in special designed carpet air movers and commercial dehumidifiers (a rental center will have them). Now please understand that a home residential dehumidifier and a regular house fan will not do the same. I have experimented with using these products and have found out that they do not come close to what the other machines do. The air fans are then placed under the carpet and placed to the wall (wall base removed and holes drilled under the wall base line). The commercial dehumidifier is placed in the room. Again an IICRC certified water damage Restoration Contractor has these equipments.

10. It is customary to leave the equipment for at least 3 days and then check the moisture with moisture detection equipment. You can check daily, but it usually takes three days on average to dry.

11. When everything is dry replace the wall base and reinstall the carpet. Unless you are very handy and have the right tools (and coordinated) I would suggest having a carpet installer reinstall the carpet with new padding.

Home Garden Design and Styling

The first thing to do in garden design is create a physical boundary or framework for your garden. This should include not just an exterior boundary line, but interior markers such as paths, evergreen trees, and/or small architectural structures like an arbor or gazebo. Dwarf conifers are becoming a favorite for garden evergreen trees. Their shorter height keeps them from overwhelming your garden. Unfortunately, their slow growth rate and popularity have made them relatively expensive.

Gardening Styles and Themes
While there are general garden design principles like balance, unity, and transition, there’s no wrong way to design your garden. Start with whatever you like and go for it. Gardens can be redesigned annually so there’s no risk in making a mistake. If you’re not sure where to start, consider a specific gardening style or theme.

Habitat Garden—Sometimes called a naturalistic garden, this garden is designed to attract pleasant wildlife, such as birds and butterflies. Not for every gardener or homeowner, but when properly managed, it can be an amazing addition to a home.

Formal Gardens—Examples include Mediterranean, English, and Cottage, these gardens tend to be more ambitious projects in their traditional forms. Still, design elements can be incorporated into a smaller home garden, making them more practical.

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White Garden—This garden is exactly what it sounds like—a garden that uses all white flowers. This creates a specific mood and draws attention to depth, arrangement, and the transition of a garden. When done right, the result is a truly breathtaking garden.

Children’s Garden—This garden invites exploration. It eschews strict physical boundaries and tends to include edible plants and flowers that attract wildlife. Hidden spaces that facilitate exploration and games are another common feature.

These styles are only a few common examples of gardening themes. There are countless others. You can even invent your own. Choose one of your favorite places or world cultures and design and populate your garden with those elements. Naturally, climate will play a role in this decision making. You’re not going to create a tropical rainforest garden in west Texas or similarly water barren areas.

Treat Your Garden like a Painting
As you gain more experience with your garden design skills, you’ll start to pay attention to nuances in color and texture. Many gardeners have a favorite plant or flower, but too much of anything can adversely affect your garden’s overall appeal. Too much contrast isn’t necessarily a good idea, either. A good painting tends to have a color scheme with contrasting accents. Consider more than just color. Plants and flowers have their own textures. You can have a largely monochromatic garden and still create interesting contrasts that will grab someone’s eyes. Another good analogy might be song composition where you have recurring themes and contrasting verses with their own accents.

Winter Flower Gardens

For garden enthusiasts, winter is generally thought of as the “off season”. This is especially true for the gardener who delights in growing flowers. It is a common belief that winter flowers are only grown commercially and that a winter flower garden on a residential scale isn’t feasible.

It is true that in very cold climates, winter flowers are a rarity. Very few flowers are hardy enough to poke their way through frozen earth and snow. It should be stated, however, that there are many species of flower that can survive in “cool” conditions, and a few that can live in down right “cold” ones.How Cold is too Cold?
Is the ground frozen? Then yes, it’s too cold. Next comes the tough one. Will the ground freeze again? If the answer is definitely “no”, then there are some flowers you can plant. It is, however, nearly impossible to say when the ground will stop freezing.Shrubs
The easiest way to have a winter flower garden is to plant some very hardy shrubs. Now, in mid-winter, we’re lucky to get much color at all. So some suggested winter shrubs will have brightly colored berries, and a few will have actual flowers.Witch hazel is one of the most common flowering shrubs. It is extremely hardy and will produce winter flowers in the months of December and January. Japanese pieris is another good choice and will produce flowers in the very late fall or early winter. In slightly milder climates, rosemary will bloom during winter months.Holly, with its beautiful and festive berries, will add color to your garden. Callicarpa and photinia, related species of shrub, will produce bright purple and dark red berries, respectively, that can last all winter long.

Winter Flowering Plants
There are a few flowers that, though there are no guarantees, tend to do better than others in cold conditions. Helleborus, snow drops, and winter jasmine are very hardy and some of your best bets. Some roses and lilies are also quite tough. Iris, hollyhock, poppy, and carnation have been known to thrive in cold conditions as well.

Those looking for a great variety of blooms, however, should either stick to summer months or invest in a greenhouse. There are some greenhouses on the market that are very affordable and will make it possible to grow a vast array of different flowers no matter the season.Admittedly, the amount of species of winter flower pales in comparison to the number of flowers that bloom in other seasons. Maybe that’s what makes them so special. Seeing flowers when the snow is still falling is a thrill even indoors. Imagining how hard those little blooms and berries have to work outside in the cold just to brighten your day makes their rarity almost uplifting.

Small Kitchen Solutions

Kitchen remodeling ranks among the most popular remodeling projects each year, as kitchens have become the functional and social hubs for many families.

Almost every kitchen has a design flaw or something that can be changed to make the space more workable. However, no challenge is quite as difficult as reworking a small kitchen space.

If you are on a tight remodeling budget, have building restrictions, or own a condominium where you must work with the space allotted, you do have options to transform your kitchen.

New appliances can serve to update and unify a room. All stainless steel appliances are becoming more popular, and not just in contemporary homes.

Energy efficiency is a key factor to keep in mind when purchasing home appliances, but the energy efficiency of similar appliances can vary significantly. It is usually more cost-effective to purchase household appliances with high efficiencies.

Built-in ovens, microwaves and storage for small appliances will make your kitchen appear less cluttered.

For homeowners who entertain regularly the kitchen wine refrigerator has become very popular. These appliances can accommodate from 12 to 300 wine bottles depending on the model. There are even countertop fridges to keep just a few bottles at a time properly chilled.

Counter Space
Even large kitchens are difficult to work in if there isn’t enough counter space. Plan to cover as much of the area not occupied with appliances with countertops. If the difference in floor space is a matter of a few square feet, plan your design with deeper counters.

Granite, marble and stainless steel are the most expensive options, with laminate on the lower end of the spectrum and everything else falling somewhere in between.

For homeowners who use their kitchens frequently, different materials will enable a better cooking environment. For example, marble and granite offer cool surfaces for handling dough while the butcher block allows one to easily chop and prepare food. And, if you like both, you don’t have to choose. It’s becoming more and more popular to combine counter options to create a unique look and a more functional kitchen.

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Squeeze as many cabinets into your design as possible. Think about the placement of cabinets in relation to appliances, also. Deep cabinets that can hold plates should be located near the dishwasher, and large cabinets with slide-out drawers should be placed near the oven. The fewer unnecessary steps needed to complete a task, the smoother the function of your kitchen will be.

Waist-high sliding shelves that hold mixers and toasters can quickly get small appliances out of sight, but keep them easily at hand. Built-in storage for foods like potatoes and onions, and bread storage cabinets will also give the kitchen a cleaner look.

Roll-Out Pantry
If there isn’t enough room for a closet pantry, many cabinet manufacturers now make roll-out pantries. These can be pulled out to view the items you have, but rolled back into a space about 18 inches wide and 5-1/2 feet tall. If there isn’t room for any type of pantry, consider converting a closet outside of the kitchen to a storage area for fine china, large pots and infrequently used items.

One easily overlooked design element is good lighting. Under-counter lighting and clean halogen lights can make the space appear larger and more comfortable.

A small kitchen does not have to have a small sink. A large sink will make it easier for you to clean large pots and pans, and is a great place to stash the dirty pots before you have a chance to rinse them. If you are in an apartment or a small house, a large sink in the kitchen can serve double duty as a utility sink, too.

Some other ideas to increase the efficiency of your kitchen:

  • Put a wire basket on the inside of the cabinet to hold trash bags and other frequently used items. These store-bought products are affordable and easy to install on the back of the cabinet door or under the sink.
  • Mount an instant hot water heater on the sink. This is something small that makes a big difference. Installing such a device will usually replace the sprayer or soap. This could be really useful if you indulge in a cup of tea or instant coffee each day.
  • Install a tile back splash on all the walls above the counters, stove and sink. This can quickly change the look of the kitchen and make it easier to clean.
  • Change the cabinet and drawer knobs. This is a very simple and affordable option that will give the kitchen an extra special touch. There are a lot of unique designs out there, so be prepared to use your creative side.