Get Ready for Holiday Entertaining

Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

holiday-entertainingCompany’s Coming, Get Ready for Holiday Entertaining

Company’s Coming! Put Out Your Holiday Best with help from Martens True Value.

Holiday entertaining is a big job and prepping is the hardest, most stressful part.

Reedsburg True Value hardware store can simplify your holidays with what you need to welcome guests and make them feel at home.

From quality cookware to smart table settings, even airbeds if your company is staying awhile. We’ve thought of everything so you can focus on playing holiday host.

Available In-Store and ONLINE, at True “VALUE” Prices…

deluxe-banquet-table-folding

Folding Tables and Chairs

This banquet table is the perfect size for company.

30 x 72-In. when open, folds in half for easy portability (with carry handle). Lightweight, too.

Rugged steel tube frame with powder coated finish; polypropylene surface.

29-In. high, folds To 4-3/4-In. wide for easy storage.

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queen-size-airbedAirbeds

Coleman, queen, quickbed plus airbed, includes 4d pump for quick inflation, antimicrobial sleep surface resists odor, mildew, mold, & fungus.

Comfort strong coil system provides better support all night long, leak free airtight system, doublelock valve for easy inflation/deflation, carry bag included for easy storage & transporting.

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10 Tips for the Best Thanksgiving Dinner

Monday, November 6th, 2017

best-thanksgiving-dinner-tips10 Ways to Make Thanksgiving Dinner Delicious and Easy

I love to cook. And I love to have a day off of work. But, despite the fact that preparing Thanksgiving dinner recipes is relatively easy, I’m ashamed to admit that sometimes, I dread the work involved. I just want to hang out with my family and friends, have time at some point during the meal to take a stroll on the beach boardwalk, and not have to work hard getting even a simple meal on the table. So, over the years, I’ve developed a handful of strategies that have made my Thanksgiving dinner preparation a bit easier. Hopefully, these will make your Thanksgiving dinner recipe preparation a little easier too!

1. DON’T STUFF YOUR TURKEY. While stuffing the turkey really makes the stuffing moist, there are ways to recreate the same result without stuffing it in the turkey. Who needs to worry about scooping out all of the stuffing? It just delays the meal.

So, when you trim the fat from the turkey neck and other areas, keep the fat and lay it over your stuffing and cook your stuffing in a separate casserole dish. You’ll get the benefit of the fat flavor and it will also keep the stuffing moist while it bakes.

turkey-gravy2. MAKE GRAVY AHEAD OF TIME USING THE TURKEY’S NECK AND EARLY DRIPPINGS FROM THE BIRD. There is no need to wait for the bird to finish cooking before you make your gravy. I learned how to make gravy from the Executive Chef at one of the restaurants I worked for and he made exceptional gravy. Brown chunks of carrots, onions and celery with the turkey neck in a large pot. Add stock (chicken stock is fine) bay leaves, peppercorns, sage and other spices you like. Make a roux in a separate pan using basted dripping from the bird or you can even make it ahead of time as early as you like (even the day before) by browning butter with flour (in our home, I use potato, rice and corn starch because my son must eat gluten -free). Add the roux to the broth, continue to reduce and strain completely right before serving.

3. USE OR CREATE A SECOND OVEN. If you don’t have a toaster oven, buy one now. You can find one for as little as $30 and it can work as a second oven for baking pies, side dishes etc… Along those lines, it’s fine to microwave vegetables (asparagus take about 8 minutes microwaved in water), and to make as many dishes as you can on your stovetop.

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Protect Your Family From Carbon Monoxide

Thursday, October 26th, 2017

carbon-monoxide-alarmWhat You Need To Know About Carbon Monoxide Poisoning, The Silent Killer

Carbon monoxide is a highly poisonous gas that is produced from carbon fuels like gas and oil and basically anything that burns.

You cannot see it, you cannot smell it, you cannot taste it, that’s why it is known as the silent killer.

Your home gas appliances if not maintained could leak carbon monoxide into the room they are located in.

One of the most common causes is the gas fire, they seem to get overlooked and are never maintained.

For the gas fire to burn correctly it needs to have a sufficient supply of fresh air, this is normally an air brick fitted into an outside wall somewhere in the same room. If sized properly it will supply enough air for the fire to burn correctly.

The chimney for the gas fire needs to be checked for blockages, so the products of combustion can be removed, if blocked, the products will enter the room.

The home central heating boiler is another cause of carbon monoxide if not maintained.

The most common boiler at risk is known as an open flue. This means like the gas fire it requires fresh air to combust correctly.

Another source of carbon monoxide poisoning is the barbecue.

How many times have you moved the barbecue into a closed area when the rain started falling down. Never when using the barbecue move it inside the house, it could be fatal.

What are the symptoms of Carbon Monoxide?

Some of the symptoms to look out for are feeling nausea, headaches, feeling sleepy, flu like symptoms. These are just a few to look out for.

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Halloween Pumpkin Painting

Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

Easy Pumpkin Painting: How to Guide

It’s Halloween season and time to get crafty to scare up some devilish décor.

If you’re looking to avoid the mess of carving pumpkins into ghoulish goblins and ghosts, try painting them instead with delightfully scary designs.

Follow this guide on how to paint a pumpkin and use your imagination to create a menagerie of ghastly gourds.

It’s a fun and easy holiday project for the entire family!

Here’s a list of items to have on hand to complete your pumpkin painting project:

(Available at Martens True Value Hardware Store in Reedsburg)

SHOP ONLINE for these DIY Project Supplies with Free Shipping to a participating store.

4 Tips to Clean Stainless Steel Appliances Easily

Thursday, October 12th, 2017

stainless-cleaning-tipsClean Stainless Steel Appliances With These 4 Amazing Tips

The task of cleaning stainless steel utensils and appliances used in the kitchen is something that proves too troublesome for many homeowners. Stainless steel kitchen utensils and appliances are exceptionally preferred yet sadly, many of those start showing stains & marks quite quickly and this can be an issue of worry for a lot of homeowners.

Check out these amazing tips that can work wonderfully in removing the stains & marks from utensils and appliances of your kitchen.

Cleaning Tip #1 – A pattern is usually visible on most utensils and appliances. These are the lines that can be seen easily on the surface. While doing the cleaning work, make sure you constantly clean in the same direction parallel to these lines.

Cleaning Tip #2 – To expel stains & marks you need to utilize warm water, a small amount of gentle cleaner and a delicate fabric to wash the surface. Wash the surface properly with clean water, and then dry well with a towel so water spots won’t show on the utensil.

Cleaning Tip #3 – While cleaning stainless steel to expel fingerprints, you should utilize a glass cleaning solution. Have a look at this homemade solution that can prove to be quite helpful.

Take a 500ml spray bottle, and then add 50mls white vinegar and water in it. Then, use this mixture and spray on the utensils and appliances and wipe off with clean fabric to expel fingerprints.

Cleaning Tip #4 – In case, the above mentioned tips aren’t effective on your utensils and appliances, then you need to use a stainless steel cleaner. Keep in mind to rub in the same direction as the pattern lines. Before utilizing any cleaning solution or product on your stainless items, first try it on a portion that is not visible easily. This should be done to guarantee that you get the outcome that you need and it functions properly on your stainless items.

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Snowblowers: Preparing for Winter Season

Thursday, October 5th, 2017

winter-snowblower-preparationPreparing Your Snowblower for Winter

Compared to shoveling, snowblowers offer a much faster and easier method of snow removal that saves time as well as strain on your back.

Once a snowblower is put into gear, the auger, located at the bottom of the machine, will suck snow up and into a chute. The direction of the chute can be manually controlled, thereby allowing the user to choose where the discharged snow is directed.

Having a quality snowblower, such as an Ariens, Toro, or Craftsman, can give you many winters of superior snow removal if you take the time and effort to keep your machine in good running order.

troy-bilt-snowblower-gasAfter sitting around in the garage or shed all spring, summer, and fall, when it comes time for you to pull out your snowblower for the first time during winter, you might find that you have difficulty starting it. This is especially true in cases where your area didn’t receive much snow last winter and therefore, the snowblower was not used very often.

This is why preparations should be made in advance to make sure that your snowblower is up and running when you need it to be.

Make sure to check out the important parts that might be causing an issue, such as spark plugs, as well as performing some simple routine checks before Old Man Winter really hits full force. Don’t wait until the last minute to perform a quick check up.

As part of a routine tune up to make sure your snowblower is in top running form, first check the basics such as oil and gasoline. To prevent starting problems during the current winter, you will want to have kept your gasoline level low or tank empty near the end of the previous winter.

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5 Tips for Deer Hunting Success

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

sporting-goods-crossbows-huntingFive Keys to Whitetail Deer Hunting Success

Regardless of where you are at in your whitetail deer hunting career, there are a few basic steps that you should know or perhaps review, prior to your hunting endeavors this year.

If you are new to this sport, these ideas may be new to you. If you are experienced, perhaps reviewing these will be of benefit.

hunting-clothes1. Scent Control

While this can be taken to any level of extremes, I guess you really cannot be too careful with regard to this matter. Some basic steps you can take include the following things.

Do not wear the clothes you will be in while hunting until you are heading into field.

Consider keeping your clothes in some form of scent proof bags until you get out of your vehicle (or camper, tent, cabin, etc.) and then slip them on just as you are ready to head out. Don’t get up and cook breakfast for example and then wear these clothes to the field.

Remember this for sure; do not wear the boots you will wear in the field until heading out in the field. On that point, it is pretty well established that rubber boots carry the minimal scent of any other type of boots. If you are not in a cold place, cheap rubber boots are fine. More expensive lined (thinsulate is usually the material) boots may be required in colder climates.

Scent-Lok materials are available for clothing and boots if you wish. Not required.
Also, there are laundry detergents, deodorants, and scent-blocks available and these may be advisable, but again, are not absolutely necessary

safety-vest2. Colors

When I began hunting I did not know very much about this and I really wondered.

Here’s what I have learned, and perhaps more importantly, have experienced in the field. First, do not wear blue jeans. Blue is the one color I know deer can really see.

Second, blaze orange is not a problem. No matter what you wear (as long as not blue), deer will not see you if you remain still.

3. Tree Stands

I hunt exclusively from a climbing stand and almost exclusively on public land. Here are the basics with regard to stand placement.

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Emergency Supplies to have for a Power Outage

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

led-flashlight-lanternFive Must Haves If the Power Goes Out

Power outages can happen at any point in time. The power lines can get compromised, a storm is bearing down on you or there is curfew in your area. If you are prepared for power outages, you will get the opportunity to stay away from hassle during such a situation. Here is a list of 5 things that you must include in your emergency blackout kit that comes to your survival during a power outage.

1. A light producing object
It is extremely important for you to include an object that can product light without electricity in your blackout kit. It can be an emergency light, glow sticks or few candles. You need to keep them in an area that can easily be accessed. It is better if you can attach some stickers that glow in the dark, so that you can easily find them in the middle of the night without any hassle. You should also include a matchbox and a stash of batteries in your blackout kit.

2. A first aid kit
Emergencies can happen during power outages as well and if you want to stay away from hassle during such a situation, you need to keep a first aid around the home. The first aid kit should include pain medicine, antibiotic ointments such as Neosporin, and antiseptic solutions such as hydrogen peroxide, scissors, gauze tape and bandages of different sizes.

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Fall Cleanup Tips

Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

Cleaning Up For Fall

No season lasts forever and although most people dread the end of summer, it too happens and cooler air prevails.

Of course, this means that those pretty summer flowers you planted in the garden, in the patio pots and in the hanging baskets will be stating to fade and the perennials will be starting to look a bit done.

In the late summer and early fall, gardeners all over set about their fall cleanup. It’s not all bad news though, as what you do in the fall will directly impact what you will find come spring and the new planting season.

Fall cleanup involves a bit more than simply cleaning up the fallen leaves, as you have to get rid of the annuals, dig over the dirt in the beds and cut back the perennials so they can grow back big and strong come spring.

The experts suggest you use some of the fallen leaves to use as a blanket around newer trees and shrubs to provide some warmth throughout the winter, but if your area is prone to tough winters you may want to do this around all of your trees.

You have to pick them up sooner or later anyway, so you may as well put them to good use before you do!

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Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Wednesday, September 6th, 2017

home-guttersA Green Fall Maintenance Checklist For Your Home

Just like spring cleaning, you really should get your home ready for the winter.

Here are a couple of projects that you will want to get accomplished although the weather is still nice out (or if you happen to be in the North, before the snow falls).

These projects will save energy, button up your home and prevent costly problems later on. Also included are a couple of projects that everybody thinks they should do, but you may not have too!

1. Caulk. Caulk is your friend. This could be the least high-priced way to plug leaks. It also prevents damage to wood and masonry where water has already been let in. Outside, you must get rid of the loose and/or wet materials and let the area dry out. Then use an exterior grade caulk to fix any outdoor issues.

2. Roof Drainage. You have to make sure that your gutters get a thorough cleaning in the fall. It is very important to not forget about cleaning out the S-shaped fitting under your gutter. That tends to get missed. Nonetheless, it can cause complications later on if it’s clogged.

home-office-closet-workspace3. Moisture Control. You ought to maintain a 30 to 50 percent relative humidity inside your home with a portable central system. If you aren’t, there are usually two culprits causing this: stagnant water and/or mineral deposits.

First, turn off your system and check the sponge pad. If it has calcium deposits, it is time to make a change. If the filter is clogged with deposits, scrub it using a 1-to-4 remedy of vinegar and water. To remove stagnant bacteria breeding water, use a 50-50 solution of bleach and water.

4. Air quality. Most of our properties are built tightly to save energy. Nevertheless, our homes might be so closed up that you can smell last night’s dinner for days! Changing air filters will help with odors, dust, mold spores, and pet dander.

5. Drain your water lines. In the North, you are guaranteed it will get cold enough to bust a copper pipe or even shatter plastic. In the South, you never know what weird weather will hit. How frequently do we hear about how towns shut down due to the fact they got an inch of snow?

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How to Create a Child-friendly Home

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

How to Make Your Home Child-Friendly

Babies and toddlers are a source of joy and happiness to a household, but they are very prone to accidents. They are at a phase where they can walk around and explore, but they not really aware of dangers around them.

That is why it is the responsibility of their parents or guardians to make sure that the homes toddler and babies live in are safe and child-friendly.

Here we will look into some of the common accident areas in the home and discuss how you can make them safer for your kids.

stairs-child-safetyStairs

The stairs is the first one you should inspect. The danger of being careless when using stairs needs no explanation.

Even adults easily get injured when they go up and down the stairs recklessly. And the injuries from stair-related accidents are often serious.

Here are some ways to make stairs safer.

· Adding a slip-proof matting on individual steps

· Adding a soft rubber mat on the exact spot where the stair ends on the bottom to reduce injury

· Teaching children stair safety

· Putting a non-slip grip on the stair handles

baby-proofing-your-homeElectrical outlets

Electricity is important for our modern society, but they are not supposed to come into contact with human skin because they can cause myriad injuries.

Most adults know better than to poke their bare hands inside an electrical outlet, but not children.

One of the common causes of child accidents is electrocution. So if you have children, make sure your electric outlets are safe.

· Installing power outlet covers help a lot in keeping your child safe especially if the outlet is not being used.

· Covering outlets with furniture so it is difficult to reach by children

· Renovating the house to transfer outlets higher beyond the reach of kids

Bathrooms

The danger in the bathroom is slipping. Young and old people can fall victim to the lack of friction caused by soapy wet tiles. But sometimes, there is no way around it. Bathroom tiles will get wet and slippery. Here’s what you can do.

· Place anti-slip plastic or rubber mats on the bathroom floor

· Change the tiles with anti-slip tiles through renovation

· Add some soft cushion on the corners of the sink and rubber cushion on the toilet seat to avoid injuries.

· Make sure that the soap is secured in the tray so it does not accidentally fall off and cause an accident.

Kitchen

The kitchen is the place where you cook your food, but it is not the place for children to be alone by themselves. Unfortunately, they do sometimes come to the kitchen and play with whatever they can find there including knives, forks, and other sharp objects.

· Make sure that the oven has child safety features so they can’t open it and come inside.

· Secure knives in high places so children can’t reach it.

Cabinets, Shelves, Corners of Tables and Posts

Children love to explore because for them everything is new, an adventure, but the cabinets and shelves are not places for them to try to climb.

Make sure the cabinets and shelves are secured by the wall behind so they won’t fall down in case a child does climb up on them. The corners of tables and chairs as well should have cushions in case a child hits his or her head.

By child-proofing your home, you can rest assured that your children can enjoy growing up without getting into accidents, which can put their lives in danger.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Michelle_Lamoste/2031388

DIY Project: Brick Wall Restoration

Thursday, August 24th, 2017

DIY-brick-wallHow to create an exposed brick wall

Firstly, what you’ll need:

Brick chisel and a Small crow bar

Plastic sheets and a Scrubbing brush

Brick sealer

Dust mask & eye protection

Step 1

Protective sheets. As you can imagine removing the plaster from your brick wall is messy work! This is particularly important if you have an old house with the original plaster. Whilst it may seem like a bit of work it is definitely worth using plastic sheets (painting drop sheets are perfect) and taping them to your walls and ceiling to completely seal off the area you’re working in. It is also highly recommended to wear a mask to protect your lungs from the plaster dust, and even eye protection as the dust can easily irritate your eyes.

Step 2

Pretty easy to see what’s next. Simply make a hole the plaster using your brick chisel. This is a good chance to expose a small area of the brick, perhaps somewhere hidden, to see if the quality of the brick underneath is good. Once you’ve created a hole, you can either use the chisel or a small crowbar to remove the plaster. Just tap it lightly to get behind the plaster and level it off. Be careful not to damage the bricks with the chisel or crow bar by tapping too hard. When you get to the ceiling and side walls ensure you neatly remove the plaster without damaging adjacent plaster.

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