Ice Fishing Tips & Strategies

Thursday, January 18th, 2018

ice-fishing-tipsIce Fishing Strategies – Catching More Fish Through The Ice

As the new year begins and the weather outside is “frightful” in Canada as well as the Northern United States, it means one of two things for fishermen. It’s time to catch up on your reading and/or television watching or it’s time to head out onto your favorite frozen lake and do a little ice fishing.

In this article I will outline a few ice fishing strategies that you can add to your fishing repertoire to help you catch more fish through the ice, no matter what species of fish you like to target.

One important point to make about ice fishing is that if you’ve never had the pleasure of using an ice house of some sort to go ice fishing, you should give it a try sooner rather than later. Being able to get out of the elements while you are fishing through the ice makes the entire experience of ice fishing much more enjoyable.

ice-houseWhether your ice house is permanent or inexpensive portable version, investing in an ice house is a great idea if you like to spend time “hard water”.

With that being said, let’s get down to the ice fishing strategies themselves, so that you can start catching more fish, what do you say?

Rod Sensitivity Is Key – Most species of fish are very sluggish in the winter with the extremely cold water temperatures, so detecting bites can be difficult. This is why the sensitivity of your fishing rod is a key fishing strategy when fishing through a hole in the ice. You want your rod to be as sensitive as possible, especially when targeting fish such as walleye for example.

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Why Humidify Your Home?

Thursday, January 11th, 2018

winter-tree-careDuring winter, does it often still feel chilly, even with the heat on? Are you getting shocked by static electricity? Do you have nose and throat irritation?

The heated air inside your home expands and pulls moisture away from everything it touches, and can leave your home’s interior feeling as dry as a desert.

Air moisture, also known as humidity is necessary for good health, comfortable living and more efficient home heating.

Why Humidify?

A humidifier is an appliance that increases humidity in single rooms or the entire house.

Properly humidified air feels warmer. Moist air doesn’t pull moisture away from your body, and static electricity discomfort is reduced when air is properly humidified.

When the humidity is at the recommended level, wood furniture, drywall and plaster don’t dry out and crack, and electrical appliances operate more efficiently. The proper humidity setting helps prevent nose and throat irritation.

A well-humidified home doesn’t suffer as much shrinkage during the cold months. This helps prevent outside air infiltration. In addition, humidified air feels warmer so you will feel more comfortable at a lower thermostat setting, thus saving a little on heating costs.

What is the correct level of humidity? Most humidifier manufacturers recommend a level between 35 to 45 percent as the ideal indoor humidity level.

warm-mist-humidifierChoosing a Humidifier

There are portable humidifiers, which are used to humidify single rooms, and whole house humidifiers that humidify a much larger area. Also available are “forced air” furnace humidifiers that integrate with your home’s HVAC system to provide humidity throughout the house.

Humidifier capacity is measured in gallons of water used per day. On the lower end, if you want to humidify 500 sq. ft. of space or smaller, a 2-gallon capacity humidifier is ideal. Larger spaces and whole-house units usually require a 10-gallon plus capacity.

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4 Home Heating Safety Tips

Thursday, January 4th, 2018

fireplace-maintenanceHome Heating Safety

The other day, I was cleaning his house when I found a one-inch piece of charcoal burnt into one of my couch cushions! It came from a piece of wood that popped from my fireplace to the couch.

While all that little chunk of ember did was burn a hole in the furniture, my house could have gone up in flames! I am thankful that all I have to do is turn the couch cushion around to hide the burn mark!

Most home fires happen during the winter months than any other time of year, when the cozy warmth of a fireplace is at its most inviting. Not only are fires a danger, space heaters are often used to heat rooms that need an extra boost; plus, home heating devices can produce an abundance of deadly carbon monoxide gas.

Seniors aged 65 and older are three times more likely to die or be injured in a house fire than other age groups. Not only that, but if you live in a newer home, reports are saying you may have less time to escape a fire because of synthetics.

Here are some important home heating safety tips to remember:

1) Check Your Chimney and Fireplace for Hazards
Have the chimney flue pipe checked each year if you or your loved one uses a wood-burning fireplace.

Make sure that there is a screen or glass in front of the fireplace to catch any wild sparks or moving logs. Keep flammable objects such as stockings and curtains away from the fireplace when in use.

2) Get the Proper Fire Extinguisher
Get an ABC multipurpose fire extinguisher for your home, read the manual so you and your loved ones know how to use it, and store it in a place where it is easily accessible in case of a fire.

OSHA gives some helpful tips for the workplace, hut they can apply to your home as well.

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What’s Best for Your Project, Corded or Cordless Tools?

Tuesday, December 26th, 2017

cordless-drill-lithium-batteryCorded and Cordless Tools, Which One Should You Buy?

Probably the biggest advantage of a cordless tool, regardless of type, is its portability. They can go anywhere you go, whether it be the shop, your garage or your yard, without having to find a place to plug it in or being limited to where you can go by the length of the cord.

Most of the cordless tools purchased today come with a two battery power pack. When one is low on power just simply replace it with the fully charged one. They are also very compact and can be stored out of the way easily.

When you buy them they come in kits so you can normally get a drill, a circular saw, possibly a pin nailer and a flash light, so you really have multiple tools in one.

circular-saw-master-mechanicLets compare some different tool uses where one might be better than the other. On power drills, if you are drilling a lot of holes in cement that has been aged, the corded hammer drill would be your best choice. Even though there are cordless hammer drills on the market, you would need the continuous power of a corded drill to get the job done in a reasonable length of time.

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Troy-Bilt Gas Snow Blower Preview & Sales Event

Thursday, December 21st, 2017

Troy-Bilt® Two-Stage Snow Thrower Features

Troy-Bilt’s two-stage snow throwers have several helpful features, including Touch ‘N Turn® Power Steering, Just One Hand® Operation, Heated Hand Grips, Multiple Chute Control Options, Just One Touch™ Electric 4-Way Chute Control and Extended Chute design.

troy-built-snowblowerTroy-Bilt Gas Snow Blower, 2 Stage, 208cc Electric Start Engine, 24-In. Path

This 24-inch Troy Bilt 2 stage snow thrower is powered by a dependable 208cc engine and features one hand operation, 12-inch steel serrated augers, and an extended chute.

208cc Engine
Electric start
24″ Clearing width
6 forward, 2 reverse speeds
Steel serrated augers
Single hand operation
Rugged 5″ polymer extended chute
2 year limited warranty

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Save Energy and Stay Safe with LED’s

Wednesday, December 13th, 2017

christmas-lightsHow LED’s Are Changing The Holiday Season

Every year, millions of cities, towns, villages, stores and homes get decorated for Christmas and the other holidays happening at this time of year. But did you realize that over the last decade there has been a seismic shift in how we decorate? It’s a change you might not have noticed, but is certainly affecting how we see the season nonetheless.

The change is happening due to the emergence, and new dominance of LED lighting. LED stands for light emitting diode. This technology has been around for decades, in fact, they were invented in the 1960′s and are now over 50 years old. However, it’s taken decades for them to get established as a real option for homes, businesses, governments and organizational use.

This is mainly because the technology was expensive to produce when in its infancy. However, in the last decade or so, the initially high price of LED lights has come down substantially, making it comparable to other lighting sources. Thanks to this, and the many other advantages and benefits of LED lights, like space saving, energy saving, durability and customization, LED’s have finally earned their place in the lighting arena.

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Smart Holiday Decorating

Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

holiday-lightsHoliday Decor: Spend Less & Enjoy More

Have you noticed that retailers start displaying their holiday decorations and merchandise earlier and earlier each year?

Some people welcome the early holiday cheer, while others like myself; feel there is too much Christmas to soon. A scientific poll of 1,000 American adults, 73 percent agree with the statement that “it is annoying that the holiday shopping season has gotten earlier.” Forty-eight percent strongly agree. Just 21 percent disagreed. But, if you are a gung ho ho ho shopper and into the themed holiday decorating then this time of year is definitely your best bet for great deals on all things “holiday”.

holiday-ornamentsWhat To Buy and When

Remember when the best deals came after the holiday? Obviously this is still true for items like Christmas cards and holiday wrapping paper. But now, retailers are introducing their holiday discounts early to ensure their stock is sold out by Christmas and, you don’t have to wait and purchase after the holidays only to pack them away for the next 11 months before you can use them.

Reduce, Reuse and Recycle

The holiday season with its purchasing, wrapping and celebrating substantially increases the amount of waste we generate. However, there are many opportunities for the consumer to reduce, reuse and recycle their remnants of holiday cheer.

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Wrap it Up Christmas Sale

Wednesday, November 29th, 2017

holiday-decorating-outdoors

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Wrap Up Your Holiday Decorating with True Value Christmas Sale

Sale Ends December 12, 2017 So Shop Early for Best Selection or Shop Online with Free Shipping to Martens True Value Hardware in Reedsburg!

LIVE CHRISTMAS TREES NOW AVAILABLE! Prices as low as $32.99

Featuring White Pine and Balsam Fir Trees. Shop early for best selection!!

christmas-net-lightsHoliday Wonderland Christmas LED Net Light, Micro, Multi, 4 x 6-Ft.

(Also available in white)

Holiday wonderland, 70 light, 4′ x 6′, multi, micro led net light set, green wire, uses TV #151-293 replacement bulbs, connect up to 45 sets, UL listed.

SALE $7.99Shop Online price. (Free Shipping to Store available)

In-store price & availability may vary.

holiday-rope-light-setHoliday Wonderland Christmas Rope Light Set, Multi-Color, 18-Ft. (Also available in white)

Features 216 multi-color lights in clear PVC covering. Connect up to 200′ of light strands.

Includes 18 mounting clips with screws and 18 cable ties.

SALE $8.99 Shop Online price.

In-store price & availability may vary. See more at link:

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Thanksgiving Trivia Fun

Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

What comes to your mind when you think of Thanksgiving?

The big fat golden-brown turkey? Grandma’s pumpkin pie? Or the oh-so-nice cranberries and corn-on-the-cob?

Well well, all these ARE a major part of the Thanksgiving holiday. But there’s even more to this wonderful occasion of Thanksgiving!

The holiday of Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate the beauty and bounty around us, our marvelous friends and family, the gift of their love and many more such good things that we are thankful for !

Celebrated every year on the last Thursday in November, the spirit of Thanksgiving Day sets the tone for a grand and joyous season.

Now to share some interesting trivia associated with the Thanksgiving holiday.

Like most trivia, the Thanksgiving trivia are just as much a fun read.

Check these out:

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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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