How to Stay Protected Against the Arizona Sun

Arizona days can be incredibly hot, and while outdoor activities are in full force, you may be looking for a little extra protection from the sun. Whether you plan on going to the lake, family picnics or playing sports outside, all too often, we have seen how intense the sun can actually be. When you are exposed to too much heat, your body may experience dehydration, which can lead to heat cramps, exhaustion, and even a sunstroke/heat stroke. So that you and your family are healthy all summer long we have listed some helpful tips for staying protected:

Light Colored Clothing

Depending on how you dress, light colors can really help you stay comfortable when outside in the heat. Think about wearing white or soft neutral/pastel colored clothes made from natural fibers like cotton and linen. Since dark clothing absorbs heat and tight-fitting clothes are not made to let you sweat, you can get overheated during the summer. Your body’s natural cooling system is to sweat and evaporate; therefore, do not wear clothes that will prevent this natural cooling system from doing its thing!

Hats & Sunglasses

Buy a wide-brimmed straw or fabric hat that prevents UV (ultraviolet) rays from getting to your face and neck. Your skin will appreciate this as you age and so will you, compared to people who chose not to cover their face in the sun. Make sure you purchase sunglasses that prevent UV rays from damaging your eyes. Choose sunglasses that block ninety to one hundred percent of UV rays to stay safe.

Lip Balm & Sunscreen

Lip balm protects your lips, which are very thin and sunburn easily. Make sure you purchase a balm that has SPF (sun protection factor) of at least a fifteen. When you are outdoors who wants to ruin the fun by getting a nasty sunburn? No one does, but if you do not purchase a sunscreen with at least a fifteen SPF, you will probably be sitting on the sidelines with that nasty sunburn. If you are swimming or playing sports and sweating, be sure to purchase a waterproof sunscreen.

For children, do not forget to protect the tender areas like the tops of ears, eyelids, nose, shoulders, the head and back of the neck. We would also recommend a lip balm that is for chapped lips with an SPF of at least a fifteen to put under eyebrows and on eyelids to prevent a nasty burn. The chapped lip balm’s thick consistency will prevent the balm from running into the eyes.

Enjoy your summer, and stay healthy!

Creating a Gender-Neutral Nursery

Did you just receive the wonderful news and now you are an expecting parent? We know this is an exciting time, but we also know this can be a stressful time. You immediately start thinking of a million things to do. Many expecting parents today are choosing the option of creating a gender-neutral nursery while staying away from the traditional blue and pink palettes. This can be a perfect solution for parents waiting to find out the gender of their child at birth. If you are interested in a gender-neutral nursery, we have some suggestions that will steer you in the right direction for creating the perfect nursery. Let’s take a look!

Color Schemes & Themes

Begin by choosing your corresponding color scheme and theme to pull the room together. You do not necessarily have to pick white or beige colored walls, but selecting a neutral wall color allows you to bring in other colors, patterns, and designs wherever you see fit. Think of the walls as a blank canvas, and what you add is the actual art.

Murals & Wall Decals

You do not have to be a talented artist to create a mural that corresponds with your theme. Painter’s tape is a wonderful tool to mark off various shapes, or tape off horizontal, chevron or vertical stripes. Simply paint the taped-off design with coordinating paint colors. If you do not have the time or patience to create and paint a design, research the hundreds of peel and stick decals that are on the market. Choose themed decals like jungle scenes, nature scenes, alphabets, or numbers to liven up the room. Believe us; you will have no problem finding decals to match your theme.

Furniture

If your walls are a neutral color, and your style is traditional, white or off-white is a safe choice for furniture. You can introduce a contrasting color with your mural and decals. If you are more adventurous, choose a darker color for the walls like navy or gray that will contrast with white trim and white furniture.

Accessories

Depending on your theme and color palette, choosing accessories is always the fun part of the project. Accessories including area rugs, lamps/light fixtures, window coverings, bedding, floor pillows, and stuffed animals can be functional yet stylish pieces that add to the overall design. Introducing contrasting colors to the nursery is easily achieved with the accessories you choose.

We hope you all the best and have fun creating the perfect sanctuary for your little one! Please let us know the outcome of this very special project.

The Perfect Father’s Day Gift

Father’s Day is right around the corner on Sunday, June 16, 2019. If you are helping your kids make a gift this year, we have the perfect gift that fathers will adore. The best part is that it is inexpensive and hand-made, two of dad’s favorite adjectives. So this spring, gather the kids and the supplies and let us get started!

Supply List:

  • Wooden Picture Frame
  • Small Sticks (collected from outside)
  • Hot Glue Gun with Glue Sticks
  • White Photo Mat
  • A Family Photo
  • A Fine-Tip Permanent Marker

Step One: Gather the Twigs

Take your kids on a walk through your favorite park or the neighborhood to collect small twigs. You want to make sure that they will be easy enough to break off into smaller pieces. If they are damp, let them sit on top of a paper towel inside of the house for a couple of hours before beginning the project.

Step Two: Snap the Twigs

Gather your kids and all the supplies and head to a cleared off workspace.

  • Pro-Tip: Now is a great time to plug in your hot glue gun so that it is hot and ready for the next step.

Begin designing by either doing a horizontal or vertical placement. You want to begin by placing each twig on the top of the picture frame. Snap each twig off where it covers the frame and does not cover too much of the picture itself.

Step Three: Hot Glue the Twigs onto Your Frame

You will want to place the glue directly on the frame in small lines below each stick. Pick up a stick then run a line of hot glue and place the stick back into its spot. Push the stick down and let the glue harden before you move onto the next twig.

  • Pro-Tip: The step uses an extremely hot tool that can cause burns; therefore, we recommend letting you, the adult, handle this part to avoid any injury.

Step Four: Finishing Touches

Take your white photo mat and measure its size accordingly to your picture frame. Hot glue the corners of your family picture on top of the white photo mat and wait for it to cool. The kids can use a fine-tip permanent marker to write a message to dad on the white photo mat portion. Wait for it to dry and place the photo mat inside of the frame. You will most likely need to secure it in with tape in case it shifts. Place the frame backing on and voila, your gift is ready for dad.

We hope dad loves his gift and wish him a Happy Father’s Day from our family to yours!

Memorial Day BBQ Side Dish Ideas

You may consider Memorial Day the official marker of summertime. It is a time that we honor and remember those who served our country, and you may have decided to host a barbecue and invite a few veterans over to your home. If you are nervous about finding the perfect side dishes to match your BBQ, fear not because here are seven BBQ side dish ideas that you can use for your Memorial Day party:

Roasted Sweet Potato

Looking for something sweet to complement your protein choice? Roasting sweet potatoes is an extremely easy and tasty idea for homeowners. Plus, it is really simple! Just chop them up and drizzle them with olive oil before placing them in the oven!

CrockPot Mac N’ Cheese

Mac n’ cheese is a classic when it comes to barbecues. The best part is you can easily make it in the crockpot for a portable, fast recipe.

Fresh Fruit Salad

Nothing says fresh on a warm day like fruit salad. Plus, fruit salad is an easy, last minute idea that you can throw together. Try adding in your favorite summer fruits for customization.

Brown Sugar Grilled Pineapple

Looking for a dessert that will not show on the scale the next day? Brown sugar pineapples are easy and delicious options for your Labor Day barbecue. Bonus: there are only three ingredients (pineapples, brown sugar, and canola oil)!

Jalapeño Cornbread

If you love spice, you will love this savory side dish! You can add jalapeños into a box mix of cornbread or make them from scratch. Either way, the plate will be cleared off with this delicious side dish.

Baked Garlic Parmesan Fries

Everyone loves a flavorful french fry and adding a garlic parmesan seasoning turns your fries into the talk of the party. All you need is garlic, parsley, salt, olive oil, parmesan, and fresh potatoes to make this snack come true.

Watermelon, Feta, and Mint Salad

Running short on time? You can quickly throw together this 5-ingredient salad in no time! All you need is fresh, seedless watermelon, mint, olive oil, feta cheese, and salt for a new BBQ favorite.

We hope you enjoy your Memorial Day party and that your side dishes are a hit!

Must-See Arizona Travel Spots

Arizona is a beautiful state with so much to offer. Whether you are a snowbird or live here year around, the state has a large number of events, natural wonders, entertainment, amusements parks, and museums. From scenic road trips to epic nightlife venues, Arizona has it all, and we wanted to share our favorite must-see Arizona activities with you. Let’s take a look!

Scenic

Arizona is known for its beautiful landscape.? From its red painted deserts to stunning mountain ranges to the grandest of canyons, Arizona has a broad spectrum of scenic attractions.? Starting up north, the Grand Canyon spreads a majestic 277 miles of pure spectacular sights to see.? Enjoy the canyon by taking tours, white water rafting, or even participating in helicopter rides.? Head to the East to see the Petrified Forest.? This National Park is full of beautiful colors of petrified wood and is home to the Rainbow Forest.? However, if you are looking for a more lively forest, check out Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Garden!? This garden is a treasure of vibrant plant life for the entire family to explore.

Entertainment and Night Life

Enjoy some of the super malls featured in Scottsdale and Phoenix.? You can also check out many of the casino’s the state has to offer in Chandler, Glendale, Phoenix, and Scottsdale.? Arizona has many ways to keep locals and tourists entertained.? Are you looking for a “spooky” evening?? Head over to the Fear Farm Sports & Entertainment in Phoenix for a fright-filled evening. If you are looking for a more social evening, check out some of Arizona’s many entertainment districts like the Glendale Entertainment District for movies, dining, clubs, and more.

Outdoor Adventures

Want to get more hands-on in this desert?? Head over to Sedona for the famous Broken Arrow Pink Jeep Tour.? While in Sedona, check out some ATV rentals.? Nothing feels more invigorating than driving through this mountainous terrain.? Sedona has many gorgeous hiking trails, but do not be disappointed if you cannot make it out there because Arizona is packed with fun hiking trails, waterfalls, and a beautiful night sky.? Just make sure to take plenty of water before venturing out into this enchanted oasis.

Arizona is filled with endless activities and beautiful landscapes.? You will never get bored.?From nightlife to relaxed evenings and even adventurous days, Arizona has it all. For more local tips, make sure to check out more of our content and subscribe!

Fun in the Sun

Outdoor entertainment is an important aspect that you can add to your home if you plan on hosting guests. It is also great because entertaining guest outside does not acquire you to clean up the inside of your home frantically. To help you maximize your home’s outdoor potential, here are five great outdoor entertainment ideas to add to your home:

Pools

Pool parties create a fun, refreshing atmosphere that is fun for all ages. You will want to think of water-related games that can draw guests into the pool. Plus, pools are great investments to add to your home and add to your property value. They also make vacationing as easy as walking right into your own backyard.

Bars

Adding an outdoor bar or kitchen to your patio or garage will make your house the hotspot of the summer. Consider adding an outdoor pizza oven or an outdoor kitchen for ultimate entertaining goals. You will find that outdoor bars are great for socializing and make your space an energetic, fun environment your friends will not forget.

Games

Games can be fun for all ages. You can add a basketball hoop to your driveway for hours of fun or even set up a volleyball net. Find games that entertain you and cater to your company you are having. Perhaps, you like bocce ball or cornhole. These are great inexpensive investments that will have you and your guest entertained and coming back for more fun.

Barbecues

If you are looking for a fun activity, have people over for a cookout. Grilling and barbequing are timeless pleasures that everyone enjoys. Just make sure you have seating for your guest. Consider getting some patio furniture or setting up a table before your guests arrive. Also, do not forget to purchase condiments, plates, and beverages prior to hosting.

Hosting outside is a great way to enjoy a beautiful day with friends. Whether you host a pool party or a barbeque, you can enjoy the warm weather with people you love.

Guide for Planning The Ultimate Graduation Bash

Congratulations! You or someone you love is graduating. This is a monumental step in your life. To help make sure you have the celebration of the century, we have created a quick and easy guide for planning the ultimate graduation bash. Let’s take a look!

Location, Location, Location

Typically, graduation festivities are held at the graduate’s household, but if you are deciding to do something a little different, be sure to book in advance. Places like restaurants, party venues, and parks can serve as an excellent graduation party location, but they tend to fill up quickly. You will want to begin looking at places as soon as possible.

Let Them Eat Cake

While you are entertaining your guests, be sure to have some type of food for them to enjoy. From catering to a home-cooked meal, you will want to serve a crowd-pleasing meal for all to enjoy. You may even want to add some sort of bar area for the adults. The bar and food will help to encourage people to stay longer at the event which in essence, is more fun for all!

Memories to Last a Lifetime

Since you will most likely want to remember your graduate’s party, you should be sure to take video footage and photos of the event. This is a time of celebration, and you will not want to forget everyone’s smiling faces and laughter.

Easy Entertainment

Besides eating and catching up with the new graduate, your guests will need some activities to keep them entertained and busy. Below, you will find four affordable and fun activities for your guests:

  • Graduate-Themed Games
  • Coloring for Kids
  • Board Games/Indoor Games
  • Outdoor Games (Giant Jenga, Corn Hole, Etc.)

Dec’d

Decor can be an essential part of the overall theme. You can easily decorate the area with pictures of the recent graduate. Everyone would love to see a timeline of their education, and it can be a fun activity while people wait for food.

Get Your Groove On

Lastly, be sure to play music in the background. Music can help fill in for awkward pauses plus it always adds life to a party. Just be sure to select a playlist that is appropriate for all ages.

We hope you enjoyed these tips and tricks! Congratulations again and good luck on your future endeavors.

Fun Summer Activities for Your Kids | Part Three

Studies have shown that children today are spending more and more time indoors than ever. Since children need direction and influence, having fun activities to participate in outdoors is crucial for children growth and development. From scavenger hunts to catching frogs, there are thousands of ways for your kids to play in the sun. Here are some of our favorite fun family activities you can put together so your kids can get a little more time outside this summer:

Picnic

Pack up some food and head up to the park for a picnic. The whole experience should be part of the adventure. Write a grocery list together with your kids, and let them explore the grocery store with you to find the items they need. Next, prepare the food at home together and pack it in a basket. When you head to the park to eat it, that is the reward. It teaches your children a good work ethic. You put in time before to have the end reward. This task is simple but effective, and your children will love it.

Amusement Parks

Your kids will be in heaven when you take them to an amusement park. With so much to offer and a full day of activities, this is a great summer activity. Plus, amusement parks have very diverse entertainment selections and options available for kids of all ages. Exploring and using the map can help with their sense of direction. Amusement parks can have you entertained for hours on end. Just remember to bring sunscreen and plan ahead for eating and travel.

Zoo

Do your children love animals? Let them see their favorite creatures in real life at the zoo! Not to mention, the zoo is a learning opportunity. Discovering animal species and their habitats is always fun. Your kids will be in awe of how large some animals are and love the silly creatures as well. The zoo is an opportunity to learn what animals your children each like, and give you a safe and fun family activity.

Summer is time for fun. Make sure your children get enough time outside this summer by utilizing some of our favorite ideas and remember that you are never “too old” to have fun.

What are your favorite summer activities? We would love for you to share your thoughts with other readers below in the comment section.

Fun Summer Activities for Your Kids | Part Two

Summertime is right around the corner, and your children are probably looking forward to enjoying the outdoors. You want your children to remember all the great activities that they participated in during their childhood because this is a crucial part of their lives where activities can help them develop. Today, we are going to look at three summer activities you can do with your child to help get them outside and enjoying the Arizona warmth:

Beaches

Do not forget to bring sunscreen! The simplicity of the beach will allow their imagination to become more powerful. Your children love the beach and the opportunity to explore a new atmosphere. You do not need to bring much to enjoy the beauty this landscape has to offer. Bring some beach towels, frisbees, buckets, shovels and maybe some beachballs. Come up with some fun games or ideas for the day. If you plan on staying long, do not forget to pack snacks to eat throughout the day.

Farmer’s Market

The farmer’s market is a perfect place to help children adapt socially. They are not too crowded but go through simple skillsets of interacting in groups. Allow your kids to help with some shopping. Plus, this is an opportunity the children can be taught to say “please” and “thank you.” With the farmer’s market, you will be able to get out of the house and enjoy the sun.

Crafts

Creativity is powerful and can help the mind grow. Let your child explore their artsy side with crafts. Some outdoor crafts can be as simple as chalk drawings in the driveway. This can let your child enjoy the weather of the summer and still be crafty. Painting rocks, building a kite, and helping in the garden can all be different ways to explore creativity in your child’s life. You can even allow your kids to build their own boats and take them to water to see if they float for two summer activities combined!

Spending time outdoors this summer with your kids is essential. While children take a mental break from school, it is never time to stop developing. Remember to expand your children’s adventurous side and creativity levels by adding outdoor family fun into the plans. Make sure to check out the last part of the series to get some more fun ideas!

Fun Summer Activities for Your Kids | Part One

Every season comes with fun, entertaining activities for friends and family to enjoy. Since summer gives us longer days and more time to enjoy outside, it is always fun to find new activities and games for the kids. At Fulton Homes, we understand that childhood is a significant time in a kid’s life to explore different sports and hobbies and find their interests. To help you make the most of summer, here are the top summer activities your children should try:

Sports

Getting your children active in different sports can help develop teamwork skills. Children working towards a common goal will help with problem-solving as well. Your child can also discover that practicing a particular sport can help develop skills in life. Whether baseball, soccer, or swimming, your child will experience growth through training and practice. This can also help your child discover what they like and do not like. Plus, sports can also be a great physical activity to keep children from living sedentary lifestyles.

Water Games

Kids love water games, and in Arizona, the summers can be hot! From sprinklers to water balloon fights, water games are a blast that the whole family can enjoy. Plus, water games will help your child experience the outdoor environment more. You can invest in a slip-n-slide or go to a nearby water park. These types of activities are fun, bonding time and let your child explore many different water activities like water slides and diving boards to stay cool during the hot Arizona days.

Parks

Today, children spend much of their time indoors and have little motivation to go outside the home. Taking your children to a park has many benefits. They usually are free admission and can allow your children to explore. Plus, exploring can help with mental development. This time will help with developing a relationship with your children as you hike, explore, and create an adventure together.

Summertime is a crucial time for children to enjoy while away from school. Finding diverse activities can help your child not only socially develop but physically and mentally as well. Make sure to have fun and let your child be creative. For more ideas and adventures, make sure to check out the rest of our Summer Activities series.