Everything You Need to Know about Recycling

Your recycling efforts are beneficial to the environment, the community, and the future of our planet. Creating a recycling plan for your household can help with the sustainability of our earth. The best part about recycling is that it is easier than many homeowners may believe. If you are a beginner, we have compiled a list of tips to help you with your recycling efforts. Let’s take a look!

  1. Know Why You Recycle. A significant part of recycling is understanding the impact waste, and greenhouse gas emissions have on our environment. Recycling can decrease the amount of waste we send to landfills, help to protect our natural resources, cut back on pollution, save energy, and it can lessen greenhouse gas emission. Recycling takes your products/materials and repurposes them.
  2. Know How to Recycle. You will need to check with your community to see what specific items you can recycle. We have compiled a list of the most common items that can be recycled but always check with your city to see if they will accept these items:
      • Paper. The United States Environmental Agency states that “30% of trash generated each year is paper. This is more than any other material.” When you recycle paper, it helps make new paper products, save our trees, and other natural resources. When you are purchasing new paper, look to see if it is made from recycled materials.
      • Batteries. Typically, communities do not recommend homeowners to throw away their batteries because they can contain heavy metals. The best choice is to recycle your batteries.
      • Plastic. The amount of plastic Americans use each year is alarming. In 2014, we used 33 million tons of plastic and only 9.5% of that was recycled according to The EPA.
      • Glass. Glass is an extremely reusable resource. It can usually be recycled at your local community curbside site.

3. Know When and Where to Recycle. Some cities offer recycling bins that can be picked up weekly at your house and other communities offer central drop off locals for homeowners to drop off their materials.

It is important to take into consideration your global footprint. How are you contributing and affecting our earth? If you do not know, that is okay! Recycling can be a great start. Recycle when you think about it then eventually you can challenge yourself to recycle more often.

The Essentials: Laundry Room Edition

Whether you are moving into a new place or starting the organization process from scratch, it is a good idea to organize your laundry room. In order to begin the organization process, you will need to make a list of everything you should have inside your laundry room. To help you get started, we made a general list of essential items. Let’s take a look. 

What You Should Have in Your Laundry Room:

1. The Basics. 

Your laundry room should have basic items like detergent, fabric softener, stain removers, bleach, dryer sheets, and other necessary things for loads of laundry. 

2. The Supplies. 

  • Extra Baskets and Bins. For optimal laundry room organization, you will need baskets for sorting and bins for storing. You may find it helpful to have a few extra baskets and containers on hand for busy days. 
  • Ironing Board + Iron. Every laundry room should contain an iron and iron board to help spruce up clothing. Whether it is a travel-sized ironing board or a full-size, be sure to incorporate one somewhere in your room to help tidy up your look. 
  • Sewing Kit. Accidents happen, and sometimes, they happen to our clothes. Be prepared with a fully stocked sewing kit to replace any missing buttons and fix any small tears. 
  • Trash Bin. You may find it helpful to store a trash bin inside your laundry room. It will make throwing away lint from the dryer easier as well as any packaging from the laundry supplies. 
  • Cleaning Supplies. If you are not storing your cleaning supplies anywhere else in the house, your laundry room can be a great area to do so. Using the laundry room can be a great, safe place to store chemicals and other cleaning aids. Just be sure to place toxic items high, away from small children and pets. 

3. If You Have Extra Room. . . 

If you are left with some extra space and money, we have listed a few additional items that you may find helpful: 

  • Clothing Bar 
  • Folding Area/Countertop
  • Mesh Bags for Delicates
  • Steamer  

What could you not live without in your laundry room? We would love to know in the comment section! 

Last-Minute Halloween Decorations

Decorating for Halloween can be a fun and creative way to spruce up your house for fall. You can probably already find Halloween decor in almost every store imaginable. But sometimes during your search for cute decor, you end up not finding what you wanted. If you are struggling to decorate your home, we have five last-minute Halloween decorations that you can make yourself. So put on your DIY pants and let us get started:

1. Ghost Lanterns.

For this project, you will want to save your finished milk jugs. Once you have accumulated three to four milk jugs, you can begin this craft with your kids. Give everyone a milk jug and a permanent marker. Instruct the kids to draw a ghost’s face on the container. After everyone is done, take ghost milk jugs outside and place holiday lights inside of them. The “ghost lanterns” can light up your porch for Halloween night. 

2. Chalkboard Pumpkin.

All you will need for this project is a spray can of chalkboard paint and a pumpkin. Afterward, you will want to write a “spooky” message on the pumpkins with chalk. You can place your chalkboard pumpkins outside on your front porch for a Halloween greeting.

3. Candy Corn Decorated Bottles.

You will want to save your empty glass bottles for this Halloween hack. Once you have your containers cleaned and dried, spray paint them in the colors white, orange, and yellow. This is a simple project for homeowners who love candy corn! Once you finish your candy corn themed bottles, you can use them as decor on your coffee table or dining room. It is simple but adds a little bit of festivity to your home’s decor. 

4. Mummy Door.

Gather white streamers and wrap them around your front door. Secure them to the door by using clear tape. Make sure you have the streamers overlapping for a mummy effect. After the door is covered, you can make eyes by cutting out large circles from white construction paper and smaller circles from black construction paper. Place them on the door and secure them with clear tape. 

5. Haunted House.

Finish your front porch off with this timeless decor idea. You will need a couple yards of cheesecloth, black tea bags, a staple gun, scissors, and poplar strips. First, you will cut cheesecloth into different heights then soak them in black tea overnight. The next morning, you will want to take them out of the black tea water and lay them out to dry. Once they are dry, you can take your staple gun and begin stapling them to the poplar strips. Lastly, you will staple the completed poplar strip to your porch’s overhang. Voila, you have a haunted house for Halloween night. 

We hope you enjoyed these last-minute Halloween decorations! Let us know your favorite last-minute decor idea below in the comment section. 

Is The Bedroom The New Living Room?

Do you find yourself spending more time in your bedroom than the living room? There is no wonder why; after all, the bedroom is our resting place and the ultimate space for comfort, safety, and solitude. Gone are the days where the bedroom was just a space to rest your head at the end of a long day. Which leads us to this question: Is the bedroom becoming the new living room?

Here are three good reasons why we are beginning to believe that the answer to that question is a “yes:”

1. Limited Space

Many people, especially city dwellers do not have an allocated living room due to the limited square footage. In fact, rental property prices have increased so much that many individuals have homes where the bedroom and living room function as both, such as in studio apartments. With clever furniture arrangements, this can easily be pulled together. Multipurpose furniture can also offer the same value as a living room, giving homeowners flexibility when it comes to space. 

2. Comfort and Casualness

These days home decor trends embrace comfort and casualness more than sophistication. People are investing in furniture that is breathable and casual like laid-back loungers as opposed to high-backed Victorian style furniture. Creating livable spaces is crucial and this same concept is often applied to the bedroom where we tend to eat, sleep, lounge and even work.  

Yes, most bedrooms have been designed to be an open sanctuary where even a guest can enter and relax. Just think, our bedrooms have almost everything we need to be comfortable. 

3. Soft Inviting Materials

From the plush pillows lining the headboard to the soft rugs on the floor, when designed correctly, our bedroom should embody coziness. Such inviting materials incite feelings of contentment, comfort and is guaranteed to make your guests feel welcomed into the bedroom.  

4. Multifunctional Furniture

It is common to see some living room-style furnishing in a bedroom. For instance, it is common to see a small sofa in the bedroom or a designated sitting area. Furnishing your room with pieces like a comfy couch and television set is bound to further create the ultimate living space. 

What are your thoughts? Are bedrooms becoming the new living room? We would love to hear what you have to think below in the comment section. Thanks for reading! 

What to Keep an Eye Out for in an Antique Store

Antique stores can have many hidden treasures available to homeowners, but with so much to look through, we can begin to feel overwhelmed. Sometimes, the biggest challenge is to know what to keep an eye out for while you are shopping. Designing your home and having a general plan on what to buy is key when shopping. To help you, we have listed four items that interior designers search for in an antique shop. Let’s take a look! 
What to Keep an Eye Out for at an Antique Store: 
1. Persian Rugs
Persian rugs are a great find in an antique shop. These high-quality rugs have beautiful woven patterns and designs that add character to any room. Make sure to keep an eye out for these hidden treasures when you are in an antique shop because these stores are the perfect spot to get a superior rug at a great buy.

2. Antique Mirrors
Antique mirrors are another item you should be on the hunt for in the antique shop. These framed mirrors look great in all styles of rooms. Antique mirrors and mirror frames can have a charm to them you do not get in mirrors today. 

3. Quality Furniture
Look for furniture with high craftsmanship skills. Some antique furniture was built to last for years and years. Take advantage and find a piece that will be a great addition to your home. Look for solid wood pieces like coffee tables, and quality-made dressers. You will be surprised how long this furniture can last in your house.

4. Multipurpose Furniture
Keep an eye out for multipurpose furniture and furniture you know will serve a use in your home. There are so many unique items in an antique shop for you to add to your home’s decor. Make sure what you are looking for pieces that will serve a purpose in your home. Finding multiple-purpose items with extra storage on dual-purpose seating can be a hidden treasure in and of itself.
Next time you go into an antique shop consider an item to look for before starting your journey. This does not have to feel like a daunting task. Antique shops are fun and a great way to add character and charm to your home’s decor. For more tips and tricks, visit us at Fulton Homes

Home Hacks

Moving into a new home is an adventure and a great opportunity.  Having a clean slate to decorate and add your furnishings is a tremendous privilege; however, there are some super simple mistakes people make, time and time again, when moving into their new homes.  Sometimes, simple home hacks and lifestyle tricks can really showcase your home. We put together three quick techniques to showcase your pride in your new home and to help keep it looking clean and dapper. Let’s take a look!
Home Hacks:
  • Wire Tuck
So many people ignore the eyesore that wires can create.  Remember to tuck away all wires running to and from electronic devices. Prevent any tripping hazards by cognitively placing furniture over or around exposed wires to lamps.  If wires have been exposed running to a television, consider getting clips to consolidate the exposed wires.  You can even paint the wires to match the wall paint to help them blend better with the atmosphere. Making sure your wires are all properly hidden in your lamps, computers, and televisions is essential to showcase that you care about your home.
  • Make Your Bed
This cost you absolutely nothing but shows your proud to be in your space.  Making your bed not only is a great style habit to develop but always leaves your room looking clean and fresh.  A tidy room will also look bigger.  So, make your mom proud by making your bed this year and keeping a neat looking bedroom.
  • No More Clutter
Minimalism is a great habit to develop.  It can keep the functionality and aesthetics of your home always in check.  For example, do not keep clutter on your tabletops or shelves. A clean, minimalistic atmosphere is ideal for allowing your homes openness and architecture designs to take the spotlight.  Limit the decor to only the essentials needed to strengthen your environment and understand that less is more.
These simple but effective habits can help your home feeling clean and always welcoming.  Try incorporating these into your home in any stage, whether you have lived there a day or a year to help strengthen the space. For more home hacks, visit us at Fulton Homes.

Fabulous Fire Pit Ideas

Whether you are hosting your family or friends, a fire pit is an excellent addition to any patio or backyard oasis.   Fires are relaxing and captivating to sit back, relax, and enjoy.  The mix of tranquility and destruction has always had a psychological effect on the mind.  Adding a fire pit to your home is the perfect way to unwind at the end of your day and experience the outdoors.  We put together a couple of our favorite fire pit designs for you to add to your home to help transform your yard into a gorgeous, welcoming outdoor haven.
  • Classic Fire Pit
The classic design can be made from traditional fire pit stones which you can purchase at your local home and gardening shop.  This round design gives you the capability of building your fire pit to the size you want.  These stones can be loose-laid or sealed to provide a more permanent feel.  Classic round fire pits are great for hosting events because they give the most freedom of seating.
  • Gravel Fire Pit
If you put your fire pit in your yard, graveling the surrounding area designates the area.   You can make the space as large or as small as you desire.  Purchase seating you think helps enhance the look that you are going for in your yard. Whickered chairs, rustic logs, and modern stools are great accessories. The freedom is yours to amplify your yard.  Contain your fire with the classic design or use some loose boulders.
  • Earthed Fire Pit
Submerge your fiery design with an earthed fire pit.  Dig a hole to the desired depth to use for your fire.  You can put red stones or reflective fire glass of your color preference to help this look.  This is a great looking design which contains the fires width as well as height impeccably!
  • Modern Concrete Bowl
Modern designs have been flooding the market.  For this look, invest in a gas fire pit or concrete bowl design. These modern designs work great on any patio. You can choose even to use mosaic tiles to add to the patio’s fire pits design.  
All fire pit designs give you the freedom to express your style.  Adding a Rustic style fire pit or a Modern themed one is your personal preference.  Adapting your yard to how you seem fit is a fun and great way to get to love your home.  So, spend some time outside this autumn, find your place of solitude or host a social gathering with a beautiful fire pit. Believe us; your fire pit will be a home investment you will use for decades to come.

Fun & Creative Halloween Pumpkin Ideas

Halloween is loved by small and big kids alike. Now is the perfect time to decorate your front entrance in preparation for that spooky night. When you visit a store selling pumpkins, make sure you let the family pick out their favorite pumpkin for their own Halloween project. It gives everyone a special role in decorating and creates a fun family activity. To help you create pumpkin masterpieces, we have listed some cute and easy ideas below for making Halloween a special holiday for you and your family. Let’s take a look!

  • Candy Corn Owl Pumpkin: Spray paint the base of your pumpkin brown or beige to represent an owl’s feathers then look for a basic owl picture and cut it out of craft felt paper. You will want to make the large owl eyes in three different colors: white, brown and black. Take your handy glue gun and glue on the felt paper eyes. Afterward, you can fill in or merely outline the felt eyes with candy corn to create a festive Halloween look. We love this particular project because you will find that your children will enjoy participating in it.
  • Stacked Pumpkins: Look for a large, medium and small pumpkin that will stack comfortably on top of each other. Removing the stalk may help with piling the pumpkins. You can traditionally carve each one, spray paint or hand paint the pumpkins according to your theme and liking. Cut a lid for the pumpkins and clean the inside if you wish to place a candle tea light inside. Make sure that the pumpkins will nest on top of each other for stackability. In no time, you will have a decoration tall enough to be seen from the street and add fall charm to your home’s exterior.
  • Spider Pumpkin: Spraypaint your pumpkin black and hand-paint or glue felt for the eyes, nose, and mouth of the spider. Add red eyes or red fangs for a dramatic, scary effect. You can even take pipe cleaners and glue them to the pumpkin for arms and legs. What fun for you and the kids!
  • Pumpkin Holes: Clean out the pumpkin and leave natural or spray paint your desired color. Take the drill and start at the top of the pumpkin and drill vertical holes evenly spaced from top to bottom. Do this over the entire pumpkin and place your tea light inside. You will be surprised at how cool and beautiful this looks when lit. Add a little glitter with glue for a sparkly spooky look.

Which pumpkin idea is your favorite? We would love to hear your thoughts below in the comment section.

Creating an Amazing Bedroom

Bedrooms are your escape from everyday life. If done properly, they can become a tranquil oasis to relax and unwind from all of the day’s stressful, overwhelming tasks.  If you are interested in captivating a calming bedroom retreat and a better night’s rest, stay tuned for six must-know tips and tricks. Let’s take a look! 
  • Unique Headboard – You will want to start with a headboard that makes the statement “this is my style!” Is your style clean and simple, dramatic, modern, rustic, or maybe artsy? When choosing your headboard, you want to keep in mind the color, material, texture, and design. The headboard can become a staple piece of the room and often times, viewed as a focal point. 
  • Sensational Bedding – Comfortable bedding can make or break an entire design. You will want to capture a cozy, chic look that gives you something to look forward to each and every night. You can even take thread-count into effect for capturing coziness. Just be sure to add plenty of layers, textures, and pillows for the ultimate paradise. 
  • Decorative Pillows – The type and number of decorative pillows on your bed are not set in stone. If you are unsure, you can never go wrong with simple, neutral tones but do not fear change or being bold. Decorative pillows are another opportunity to bring in texture and color to your blissful bedroom. 
  • Focal Point Artwork – Now this is the perfect opportunity to make your bedroom explode with your personality and style. Over the headboard, you can choose framed artwork or unusual pieces like arranged pieces of China/platters, a wooden/iron scroll piece, or hand-woven baskets. Let your imagination take over for this part of the project. Remember, do not overdo it with the artwork; less is always considered more! 
  • Mood and Task Lighting – Wall sconces, table lamps, and floor lamps are an easy and creative way to bring in another design element to your bedroom. If you are a night reader, be sure to add a directional task light next to your bedside. 
  • A Fabulous Area Rug – Rugs are the perfect opportunity to bring in texture like faux fur, natural fibers, color and adding additional coordinating patterns and prints. Do not be afraid to add an area rug to your design; area rugs help to add texture and dimension to your space. 
Which feature in your bedroom design is your favorite aspect? Let us know below in the comment section. 

Tips for Cleaning Your House

We want to share some easy tips and tricks for cleaning your home so that you spend your free time doing the things that you love. As we all know, time is a very precious commodity and anything that we can do to save time is certainly valuable. We have listed a few tips below for cleaning the home quickly that you must try:
  • Start at The Top – Always start at the top and clean your way down the room. This way dirt and dust fall to the lower-level, uncleaned surface. For example, you will want to begin by dusting your ceiling fans first, then cleaning the furniture below it. This way you do not have to do double the work in the end. Once the dirt and debris fall from your ceiling, you can wipe them away while you clean your furniture. 
  • Kitchen – In the kitchen, you will want to begin by loading the dishwasher. Fill the sink with hot soapy water and a small amount of cleaner. If your stove has burner frames, remove and put in the sink’s soapy water. Next, you will want to dust off your ceiling fans, light fixtures, and windowsills then clear off all of countertops and tabletops. After they are cleared, dip a clean sponge into the soapy water and wipe down cabinets and counters from top to bottom. Be sure to rinse the sponge in hot water, and you will be amazed at how much dirt rinses out of it. Lastly, wipe down all kitchen appliances from top to bottom. By wiping down appliances, you will help to eliminate fingerprints and remove excess dirt. 
  • Bathrooms – Cleaning all bathrooms at one time is vital. Dust light fixtures and windowsills, clear and wipe down counters, and clean the bathtub and toilet bowl with cleaner. Allow the cleaner to sit while you go to the next bathroom to clear clutter and spray down the areas. Go back to the first bathroom clean and wipe down the mirrors. You can also wipe the bathroom’s baseboards and floors before you have clean the floors to help not add extra work for yourself. After you wipe the baseboards, you can take a broom and dust away any debris. Lastly, you will want to mop the space working your way out of the room. 
  • Living & Dining Room – Clear all clutter before you begin the living room and dining. Start dusting in one corner of the room and work clockwise. Clean ceiling fans, light fixtures, and dust windowsills and all furniture from top to bottom. Use your vacuum cleaner attachment on upholstered furniture for an extra good cleaning. 
  • Bedrooms – In your bedrooms, you will want to strip bed linens, wash the sheets, and remake bed. Clear all visible clutter by placing it into a basket or its designated area. Dust ceiling fans, light fixtures, window sills, and all furniture top to bottom with dusting spray and microfiber cloth. Afterward, you will want to use a vacuum or dustpan to remove any leftover dirt and debris from the floor.
  • Floors – We recommend cleaning all of your floors of the same type at the same time. For example, you would clean hardwood floors at one time and clean tile floors at one time and so on. When vacuuming carpeted floors, work your way backward out of the room and try not to overlap with a vacuum; this eliminates dust settling in the air.
  • Steam Mop– Steam mops make cleaning floors much faster than using a basic mop and bucket. Plus, you are using water to steam away dirt and germs, instead of cleaners. We recommend investing in a steam mop to help speed up your cleaning routine. 
Do you have any cleaning hacks that you cherish? We would love for you to share your tips and tricks with other readers below in the comment section. As always, thanks for reading, and be sure to check back weekly for more expert advice.