Thursday, October 30, 2014

How To Rid Your Home of MOLD

Thank you Karen for another helpful and practical post on how to get rid of MOLD in our homes!


Have you ever had mold in your home?

Sometimes it's hard to find or even decipher what that odd looking "decoration" is. The contrast in color isn't something to necessarily marvel at, but to take a deep look into, and decide if it is truly mold or not.

Mold is a type of fungus that can easily grow both inside and outside of your house. There isn't precise information about how many types of mold there are, but one thing is certain - there are more than thousand. Warmth and moisture are factors which premise the grown, spread and reproduction of molds. They can outlast dry environments which makes them a tough intruder. The problem is that people are sensitive to molds and this is a huge issue for people with allergies and respiratory diseases. Therefore any mold content in your house should be considered as a threat to your family's health. If you want to get rid of the pest, cleaning it won't be enough. You have to be sure that all the spores are removed because molds are one of the hardest opponents and they reproduce their colonies rather quickly.

In order to stop the fast reproduction of mold, you should maintain and keep the moisture level in your house as low as possible. If you have an air conditioner in your home, it would be easy to control the humidity. A cheaper and energy-efficient alternative is to get a dehumidifier. Dehumidifiers are an excellent weapon against mold infestations. They lower down the excess moisture in your home, making it more pleasant for you and less pleasant for the mold. Dehumidifiers are cheaper than air-conditioners and they use less energy for the same process.

Once you have reduced the humidity level in your home, it is time to make a direct attack against the mold. The cleaning approach is the next step, but a difficult one. Almost every type of mold and its spores can be killed with bleach. Bleach removing also prevents a second comeback. Although you can't use bleach all over your house because it is a possible threat for your children and pets and it could harm the texture of most surfaces. Still you can use bleach on tiles in your bathroom, toilet or kitchen.

Another thing which you can use is a detergent. You can clean the mold surface with a solution of detergent and warm water. Detergent cleaning is not as effective as the one with bleach but you can use it almost everywhere, according to TopDomesticCleaners London. Just make sure that you have cleaned the mold property and it shouldn't comeback.

Vinegar is the most caring product to clean mold with. The acidic character of vinegar turns it into a powerful and at the same time, a natural weapon against molds. The advantages of vinegar usage for mold cleaning is that it is safe and absolutely natural.

Bear in mind that the above mentioned will help you to clean a normal mold infestation. If you have a serious problem, consider a professional touch and look for a more energy-efficient way of removal in order to spare yourself the trouble. There are products which are specially developed to fight molds. Such mold-cleaning goods can be found in specialized stores in the form of liquid detergents or spray. Make sure to follow the instructions. The good thing is that professional anti-mold products not only remove the infestation, but also prevent the possible comeback.

When the mold problem asks for serious help it is wise to turn to another energy-efficient solution – professional mold-cleaners. There are companies which offer professional mold remediation and restoration.  Well-trained teams have better knowledge and skills and they can deal with the most stubborn molds and the scariest infestations. Don't hesitate to look for qualified assistance if you are not capable of solving the mold issue alone. 

Have you ever had mold in your home? If so, where?




CalendarsAndChores has offered one (1) Organizing Life With Less reader the chance to win a FREE calendar, with their choice of frame color, style, and font! 

  • Giveaway starts Monday, October 27, 2014 and ends Saturday, November 1, 2014 at 11:59pm.
  • One winner will be chose via Rafflecopter.com
  • Open to U.S. residents only and must by 18 years or older
  • Organizing Life With Less will email the winner and the winner has 1 week to confirm.
  • Winner will be shipped ONE CalendarsAndChores calendar, free of charge.
  • Please enter below!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Organizing Life With A Calendar + Giveaway



I love to organize my schedule{s}. For YEARS, I have bought a planner, used it for the first month, but then ended up just flipping each week over because that is what I was "supposed" to do, even though it had nothing written on it.

I then reverted back to the good ole calendar. The only thing is, the spaces for each day, were not large enough for the number of events or items I had to remember for each day. I then went to sticky notes, which ended up being strewn all over our kitchen. I knew there had to be a better way. There had to be a place where I could write down all of our events, but even add notes to the calendar, without having to resort to a planner.

That is when I was introduced to CalendarsAndChores.com.

What is unique about this calendar is that it has magnetic strips that you can peel off and reorder anytime you want. For example, you can keep a one month's outlook going, or your can erase the past week's events, bring it to the bottom, and move the new week up to the top. In other words you can completely set the calendar to how YOU would like it to look, 5 weeks at a time!


There is even a magnetic strip that has spots to write in your upcoming events, grocery list, to-dos, and notes that is available as well!


You ccould even have half of one month and half of another on the board at one time, instead of having to flip the page each time on a regular calendar, to see what is ahead.

Not only is this calendar practical and incredibly useful (as I look at our's multiple times a day), but CalendarsAndChores.com also offers customizable options as well!

There are a variety of frame options such as white, cream, black, or espresso brown, with each being 27.5" x 23.5", which is the perfect size to even use as a decorative piece in your kitchen, office, or other room in your home!

You can also choose a color and font, to make it YOURS.



Like I said, I use my calendar everyday, multiple times a day! There is even a magnetic holder available and also colored markers to add even more fun in writing up your week's events!



**You can check out CalendarsAndChores at their Etsy Shop! It will be WELL worth the purchase! Plus, your family can all be on the same schedule now, as it will sit front and center for all to see because it is that practical and appealing!

CalendarsAndChores has offered one (1) Organizing Life With Less reader the chance to win a FREE calendar, with their choice of frame color, style, and font! 

  • Giveaway starts Monday, October 27, 2014 and ends Saturday, November 1, 2014 at 11:59pm.
  • One winner will be chose via Rafflecopter.com
  • Open to U.S. residents only and must by 18 years or older
  • Organizing Life With Less will email the winner and the winner has 1 week to confirm.
  • Winner will be shipped ONE CalendarsAndChores calendar, free of charge.
  • Please enter below!

**I have received a similar product in exchange for this review/giveaway, but all opinions are completely my own.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Apple Cheesecake Dessert

With fall in full bloom, any recipe with apples, I am game! I am not even sure where I got this recipe from, but I made it for our youth group kids and they were GONE! I was able to try a bit of one and it is definitely as good as it sounds! A heart-warming, delicious, and filling dessert that all will enjoy!

Apple Cheesecake Dessert
Press dough mixture into a 9x13 pan

Mix cream cheese ingredients with a mixer

Pour over baked crust

Mix sliced apples with cinnamon and sugar

Spread over cream cheese mixture

Mix crumb topping ingredients in a bowl

Spread crumb mixture over apple/cream cheese topping

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. For the last 5 minutes, turn down the temperature to 300 degrees.
Drizzle with caramel topping. Store in the refrigerator

Ingredients:
Dough:
1 c. flour
1/2 c. butter, softened

Cream Cheese Filling:
2 - 8oz. packages cream cheese
1/2 c. white sugar
1 t. vanilla
2 eggs

Apple Filling:
2 large apples
1/2 t. cinnamon
2 T. sugar

Crumb Topping:
1/2 c. oatmeal
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. butter
1 c. flour

Topping:
3/4 c. caramel topping

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Cut the butter into flour.
3. Press flour mixture into a 9x13 pan and bake for 15 minutes.
4. Beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla.
5. Add eggs into cream cheese mixture (do not overbeat)
6. Pour cream cheese mixture over warm dough.
7. Slice apples and mix with cinnamon and sugar
8. Spread apples over cream cheese mixture.
9. Mix oatmeal, brown sugar, flour, and cut in the butter with a pastry blender.
10. Crumble over apples.
11. Bake 30 minutes and with 5 minutes left, reduce temperature to 5 minutes.
12. Cut into bars and drizzle with caramel sauce.
13. Store in the refrigerator.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Living Simply So Others Can Live


Simplify.

I hope that through this series over the past month and a half, that you have found more simple ways to live. Some of the ideas may not be right for you, but they may be right for some. Living a simple life takes energy to find, but once you find that happy medium, it is a joyous life to live.

So...

What is most important to you?

I hope that through this series, that you have been able to discover what is important to you. What you value. What are you choosing to do without? What do you need to let go of? However you answer these questions, whatever is NOT important to you, GET RID OF IT.

It is so easy to fill life with the unnecessary, the unfulfilling, and unsatisfying. Discovering what's important, helps you live a purposeful life, filled with the dreams and desires you want to accomplish, as you walk through life.

In fact, while doing this series, I ended up getting rid of 2 large boxes of items we never used. Yes, I walked this journey right along side of you. Many of them being clothes that I haven't worn in a year and would only wear out of guilt because I own them. I decided to donate them and keep only what I truly wear and appreciate. I also worked on going through our storage closets and purged of anything that I know I will never use. Some items may have been sentimental, so I put them in our keepsake bin. Making sure that each item has a place, for me, is utterly necessary when it comes to living a simple life. If I can't find a home, it doesn't belong in OUR home.

And finally, one of the biggest ways for my husband and I to live a simple life, is actually to get away. For us to truly take a break from the daily grind of life, we have to step away from it. That is why I am concludeing this series with a week's break from blogging. I was going to schedule posts throughout the week, but I don't even want to think about it.

To live simply, is being able to say no, to find true rest. It has been pretty hectic lately and we decided that before our first child arrives, that it would be a good idea to get away. So that we are! Nothing like celebrating simple living, than by staying in a studio condo, with simple amenities, in the sun of Florida! After doing LOTS of searching and finding the "simple" way of doing this vacation, we have found our answers and are looking forward to this much needed time away.

What changes have you made in your life during this series? I have decided to cut back one day of blogging, so now I am blogging 4 times a week (sometimes more, sometimes less), but I was getting overwhelmed by scheduling so many posts. So I decided to cut back on the number of posts, but hopefully improve the thoughts behind them. I also have found some time-saving ideas on how to better manage my time as a blogger. Life seems to always take some tweaking, but it is worth it in the end!

In what ways have you decided to live a more simple life? What tips do YOU have for living a simple life?

Enjoy a simpler life.

Live Simply So Others May Simply Live.

Tiny Prints thank you cars

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Do Your Commitments Line Up With Your Values?


When you look at your calendar, does your blood pressure immediately rise? Do you start to feel flush in the face, as stress starts to overwhelm you? 

It is easy to become overwhelmed with schedules as life seems to pull you in every direction. The unfortunate part is that in committing to so many things, it is just as easy to lose sight of your values.

So what really IS overcommitment? We all know the FEELING of being overcommitted, but do we really understand what it is? Merriam-Webster's Dictionary defines "overcommitment" as: to obligate (as oneself) beyond the ability for fulfillment. b : to allocate (resources) in excess of the capacity for replenishment.

Think about those words: 

To "obligate". Do you feel obligated to commit to certain activities? Do you have a hard time saying no without feeling completely guilty? Obligations in my mind are not necessarily a good thing. There is a certain point where you should stick to your commitments because that shows loyalty and trust. But when you start to realize that some of your commitments do not line up with your values, that is when you should start to reconsider them. 

Overcommitment is also doing something "beyond the ability for fulfillment". Think about that. Think about all of your commitments - do they go beyond their ability to fulfill you? Not that we should do everything out of selfish gain - in fact, we should never do something out of selfish gain, but out of a servant's heart. When you realize you are starting to lose that fulfillment, it is time to reconsider your commitments. 

Do you feel like you "allocate" yourself, to the point where you are NOT able to replenish yourself? Are you just running from one activity to another, hoping that one day, you won't burn out, and eventually feel refreshment? Do you live from one vacation to another, just hoping to stay afloat?

All questions to think about, as you look at who you are, and how much you are committed to. 

And most of all, again, do your commitments line up with your VALUES? You may feel overcommitted, but when you realize that your commitments do not line up with your values, especially those that you try to daily hold on to, it is time to maybe step down. Stepping down doesn't mean that you aren't capable or not worthy enough for it, but stepping down says you value yourself, your family, and your priorities.

Beware of overcommitment. Do not let it destroy you or even those around you. Stay true to your values.

Top Photo Source

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Problem of Following Technology Fads


How many electronic gadgets do you have? 

Why do you own the ones you do? Can you list legit reasons WHY you need that certain gadget? Or do you own it because that is what the trend is? That is what society says you should have? That is what you need in order to feel part of the "in" crowd in this world?

I would say the hot ticket item these days is an iphone. I will start off by saying that I am NOT against them. In fact, my husband has one and I can't tell you how many times it has helped us get out of a bind. Binds where we were lost and needed directions, needed to get somewhere but did not have an address, binds of needing to check information in an email, but couldn't because we didn't have a computer, but had my husband's phone. Often you hear people say "how did we ever live without that item"? I often think about that with cell phones in general. But, for every person, is an iphone needed?

That is where I get stuck. I struggle with the constant push to get the latest and greatest. To follow the technology fads and trends. What is the role of technology in life? If we bought every item that advertisers say we should buy, we would all be swimming in clutter and items that we don't need. With that said, how many items have you given in to? Do you REALLY need them? Or are they just something you WANT? Buying what you want is not necessarily bad in and of itself, but it is a trend that is hard to put a halt to. 

Do I need an iphone? I would love one. There are features about it that would be so convenient. But that's just it: convenient. I do not need to live a life of convenience. My tracfone that I pay for by the minute, suits me just fine. No, I can't check my email on demand, but I use my husband's old computer to do that. I can't always open mass text messages, but I figure if someone really needs to get ahold of me, they can call me. I can't look up directions, but a map in our vehicle typically works and so does a phone call to the destination I am trying to find. I can't play a game when I am waiting, but it gives me time to just sit and think. Read a book or a magazine. Or just soak in the world around me.

How much do we miss in life because our heads are glued to an electronic device? How often do you just sit and look outside? Sit outside and read a book? Take a look up and see someone in need? Having too many gadgets, just because of the trends you are trying to live up to, may not be as fulfilling as you think. When you see the next model coming out, do you think "I've got to have that?" If so, have you thought about those who do NOT have, so that you CAN have? Again, I am not saying that an iphone or all the time-saving gadgets are bad. I just think we need to think more about the IMPACT that they are having on our lives. Is the impact always positive? Is it helping you live the simple life that you are desiring to live?

What do you think? How do you think technology has influenced our society in a positive OR negative way?

Top Photo Source

Friday, October 10, 2014

Simplify Your Wardrobe


Do you ever stand in front of your clothes wondering what clothes to wear? 

Do you find yourself mixing and matching colors, wondering if a certain color goes with another? 

Does even the thought of getting dressed, cause you stress? I am here to tell you it should not. 

How do you view your clothes? Do they define who you are? Are they a status symbol? What if you viewed clothes as simply something to wear? 


  • We all have dreams of what we want to look like.
  • We see a picture in a magazine and think "I will look like that someday" (or dream that we will).
  • We see a manikin with an outfit on and think "I want that outfit" - yet when we try it on, it looks like anything but.
  • We dream of having a different life - one where we WOULD be wearing all the clothes we dream of wearing.

Then reality hits.

It is just a materialistic dream.


What we need to start asking ourselves is:
What do I wear everyday?
What does an average day look like and does my wardrobe reflect this average day?
Are any of my clothes falling apart?
Do all of my clothes fit?
Is each piece of clothing practical?
Is it me?

Why do you own what you own?


So where to start?
1. Find your core color. What is that you ask? 

·         Blonde hair and blue eyes - Navy
·         Dark hair and brown eyes - Black
·         Dark hair and blue or green eyes - Black or Navy
·         Red hair - Brown

2. Buy clothing that coordinates ONLY with your core color. For example, I am blonde hair and hazeled eyed (according to my driver's license). Therefore, my core color is navy. When I discovered this core color idea, I went through my closet and decided if it was worth getting rid of all of the clothing that did not coordinate with navy. I realized that I often wore black pants. That put me in a dilemma. I quickly realized that some colors went with black and navy and some did not. Some hues of purple did not go with both - so out went the purple shirts. The next time you go shopping, ask yourself if the clothing item coordinates with your core color?

3. Pick a clothing style that is YOU. Do not spend time trying to keep up with the trends. As soon as you buy that new shirt, know that in a few months it will probably go out of style because the store will have a new line of clothing in. Don't waste your time or money. By picking a style, you save yourself so much time - no decisions need to be made as to "who" you want to be that day. When you pick a clothing style that is comfortable and is you, you narrow down the choices when shopping and getting dressed. 

4. Everything coordinated? If you enjoy coordinating every accessory, more power to you. In trying to live with less, having matching accessories may not be at the top of the list. Some have a different colored purse for every outfit they own. In doing this, think about how much time is spent switching purses? Is it worth the space they take up? Is it worth the decision every morning? What about shoes? How many pairs do you need? Maybe some dressier and some casual. I steer clear of the colored shoes because I know they will only add choices (which I am trying to lessen) and add clutter to my closet.


Something to remember: no one has the same wardrobe - so why do we spend so much time trying to look like OTHER people? We see a cute outfit on someone and automatically we have cloth envy. We are trying to imitate others, instead of being ourselves.

It has taken me some time to work through these concepts. What am I most comfortable in? The clothes I have, do I own because I am trying to look like someone else? My body shape is unique to me - no one else looks like me. So why not try to be myself?

I enjoy comfortable clothes. I enjoy my thrift store purchases. I need to keep going through my clothes, but if they are not "me," I should not own them. I want to keep creating my own style because it is ME, I want to be.

Are you ready to simplify your wardrobe?