Leasing-7 Tips To Find An Apartment in Southern California

Anyone who ever said apartment hunting is easy, especially in any of the major metro areas in southern California such as Los Angeles or San Diego, is incredibly naïve or never had to do it themselves. With a sprawling geographic area like southern California, and the many cites and communities within that area, an apartment search can be especially daunting. Even with the advent of rental databases, the search can be difficult as many databases may have listings that are outdated or provide inaccurate data.

However, you can be much more successful and make your apartment search a lot easier by being an apartment finder with:

    1. A realistic budget and real world expectations and dedication to managing a serious apartment search. Make sure you do a cost of living search on the internet of the area you desire to move in to, especially if you relocate from out of state. You will get a much more realistic idea of ​​what your overall rent will be and if your projected budget can handle it. Remember you will be dealing with several people, either private landlords or property managers. Try to make a good first impression – politeness and courtesy do matter. 2. A good job. Your prospect landlord wants to know, obviously, if you can afford to make the monthly rental payments. 3. Once you start your apartment hunt, make sure you stay organized. Establish your priorities and know what you are looking for before you start your search. This will help you narrow down your search to only those properties that interest you and are within your projected budget. 4. Bring along a notebook or develop a worksheet and also carry a file folder in order to place your notes and any brochures, applications, etc., that you are likely to receive in your apartment search. Make sure you keep track of each apartment's: o Number of bedrooms o Closet space o Number of bathrooms o Kitchen size o Terms of lease 5. Keep thorough notes. Keeping track of all this data from memory will be too overwhelming; however, keeping notes will allow you to evaluate what your best choices might be when you can compare all your notes and data at a later time. Do not forget to list your personal preferences. It may make the difference between two apartments that are almost exactly alike in features, price and terms of lease. 6. Consider each apartment's physical features, such as: o Flooring type o Gas and electric appliances o Separate dining rooms o Fireplace o Air conditioning o Washer and dryer o Dishwater and garbage disposal o Microwave o Refrigerator o Balcony or deck o Security system o Storage o Natural light o Parking facilities 7. Review each apartment's neighborhood and community. This will be another important factor in considering the apartment you want to live in. You'll probably want to note the apartment's public transport to: o Public transportation o Schools o Shopping centers o Your Work o

Team-Building and Expectations – Mom's Scrambled Eggs

My mom's kitchen was off limits when I was growing up. Mom viewed the kitchen as her private domain; she did all the cooking for our family and yes, all the cleaning, too. A pretty good deal for me, my brother and my dad, you say? Yeah, mostly. But looking back, it would've been nice to have had cooking experience when I was young, rather than having to teach myself how to do it as an adult. But that's all hindsight, right? At the time, I was happy to have extra play time – and fortunately, I also really liked my mom's cooking (still do).

One of the things I recall in particular from Mom's cooking is the way she had with eggs. Scrambled, to be exact. Mom's eggs always came out firm, but never over cooked, with a slight fluffiness. Beside salt and pepper, her eggs always carried a taste of something else … some mystery spice. Now, of course, when I ask her about it, Mom says, "Oh, I do not know, I just played with them until they tasted right." Well let me tell you, as an adult, I spent years trying to recreate Mom's eggs in my own kitchen! I'd try butter; I'd try margarine. I'm try cooking on high heat; I'd try saute-ing on low heat. I'm trying adding salt and pepper in advance; I've tried adding the spices at the end. I'd try adding a dollop of milk; I'd try adding a teaspoon of water. And you know what? I was never get able to get my eggs just right, the way Mom made them. How frustrating!

It's funny how our experiences from childhood shape our ideas of what is "correct" and "right" – to the point where we can dismiss the beauty of what might be happening in the present. The fact is, my scrambled eggs these days are pretty darn good! Different from my mom's, to be sure, but equally tasty. I cook 'em slowly with olive oil, add a bit of milk, and inject a variety of spices that would likely shock my mother, including thyme, dill, garlic and onion powder, oregano and even a touch of cinnamon. They taste nothing like the eggs I grow up with, but they're mine – and even my wife likes them (or so she tells me).

It's all about expectations. When leading my corporate team building activities, I find it helpful to remember that people come in with a variety of pre-conceived notions. Perhaps they recall with fondness the particular type of scavenger hunts they did as children; sometimes they are expecting a familiar brand of treasure hunt clues, a customary level of competitiveness, or a remembered quality in the prizes. I think our job as facilitators of team building exercises is to remind participants to have an open mind to what's happening in the present. Our programs are bound to be slightly different from what people are expecting, but who knows? The new …

Does Sex Really Begin in the Kitchen?

How does this idea of “sex begins in the kitchen” work? We know it doesn’t mean getting creative with the utensils and appliances, but what does a woman mean when she says romance begins elsewhere than the bedroom?

These may be difficult things for men to really understand, but that shouldn’t stop us trying. A husband with potential is the desire of just about every woman’s heart.

Ideally, on the other hand, the wife who is the desire of a man’s heart doesn’t require him to change, but supports him as he tries.

So the picture we are developing is of a husband who is committed to learning and becoming better, with a wife who is committed to extending grace, never requiring change. Those two things in tension give the marriage a substance of mutual submission.

The husband submits himself to God, and to his wife, in learning to serve her. The wife submits herself to God, and to her husband, by allowing him to grow without forcing matters.

Both are required to submit. Marriage is about mutual submission.

But let’s get back onto the subject of sex – and its imminence emerging from the kitchen.

THE KITCHEN AS AN ALLEGORY OF LOVE

Love can begin in the kitchen or in the laundry or out in the yard, simply through the act of service; the husband plies his skill and uses his humble strength to work diligently.

It may be an old-fashioned value, but women love working men; not necessarily blue-collar men, but the willingness of a man to lead his family in cheerfully doing the tasks of the home.

Tasks like ironing, washing up, cooking, vacuuming, etc, may once have been the domain of the woman. But now no more. The issue is more about the willingness of the husband to pitch in. His heart is to help.

A woman knows she’s loved when her husband seeks to please her because he loves her. This is an act of faith for the husband, because when he does nice things for his wife she is romanced. He must be genuine, committed, sincere.

The husband never does these nice things for his wife for his personal gain. He must do them sacrificially. Wives can smell a fraud from a mile off.

***

Wives desire a sincere, thinking husband, who is willing to sacrifice himself in doing tasks around the home, and being actively involved in his family. When a husband acts with such integrity his sexual relationship with his wife will usually have more mutual joy and satisfaction about it.

© 2013 S. J. Wickham.

Acknowledgement: to my wife, Sarah.…

Home Kitchen Garden – Twelve Tips to Help You Grow a Successful Organic Garden the First Time!

As a novice in home kitchen gardening, there are a few things that you must learn and understand. Here are some tips to help make sure that your attempt at gardening is successful right from the beginning.

Do …
* Look for a space that catches a lot of sunlight, plants need sunlight to produce their food to help them stay alive.
* Make sure that the soil is fertile and well cultivated, most of the nutrients are found in the soil so this is really a must.
* Plant crops that is in season, this will help you maximize your yield.
* Water the crops on a regular basis; water is needed in photosynthesis just like sunlight
* Protect your plants from stray animals by setting up defense such as gaps or walls
* Remove weeds and unwanted grass for they steal the nutrients that should be going to your plants.
* Fertilize the soil by adding natural fertilizers; this will make the soil healthier due to the abundance of nutrients.

Do not …
* Over water the plants for they may wither and die
* Eliminate all insects for most of those found in the home kitchen garden help the crops grow
* Do not use chemical based fertilizers, make your foods as safe as it can be, there are a lot of organic fertilizers that you can use as substitute
* Forget to harvest the crops regularly; this will help them become more productive
* Despair if you fail on your first try because as they say, practice makes perfect, so just keeping trying.

A home kitchen garden is very beneficial for it does not only provide fresh, healthy and safe foods on your table, it can also be a means of recreation for you and your family and a source of additional income. So, considering all of these benefits it is well worth the time and effort! …

Office Kitchen Etiquette for Every Employee

Now that Halloween is behind us, the holiday office party season will be in full swing and there is no better time like the present to review some simple office kitchen etiquette for every employee. When your current employer decided to hire you, they didn’t also hire your mother to clean up after you at work and the myth about kitchen fairies has officially been busted. As we all know, it is common courtesy to wash your own dishes, pick up your own trash, and replace the empty paper towel roll with a new one. In general, the after-hours cleaning staff does not step foot in the office kitchen, with the exception of emptying the garbage can; so it’s up to all the employees to keep it clean.

  • It’s best to wash and dry your own dishes shortly after using them. Do not let them soak in the sink for more than a couple of hours.
  • If there is not a garbage disposal, do not put food down the drain. Scrape any leftover food into the trash first before washing your dishes and rinse the sink thoroughly after washing them.
  • After doing your dishes, wipe up any excess water around the sink.
  • If you spill something on the counter, wipe it up.
  • Likewise, if you spill something on the floor, wipe it up immediately to avoid someone slipping and falling.
  • If you are cooking something in the microwave, use a plastic cover so food doesn’t splatter. If food does happen to splatter, wipe down the inside of the microwave when you are finished.
  • When using the toaster, be sure to shake the crumbs out when you are done and wipe the area around the toaster as well.
  • If you use the last of something, replace it immediately; examples are plastic utensils, paper towels, sugar, creamer, stir sticks, etc. If there are no replacements available, notify the office manager.
  • If the fridge is crowded, do not shove employees’ lunches around to make room for yours. Try rearranging items to make more room and follow the next two bullets to ensure the fridge remains in good condition.
  • Do not leave food in the fridge for more than a day. A fresh lunch should be brought in daily or taken home each night if not eaten that day.
  • If there is rotting food in the fridge, don’t be afraid to throw it away even if it isn’t yours. The employee who brought the food in has clearly forgotten about it and will not be offended if you trash it.
  • If party food needs to be stored in the community fridge, try to give employees enough notice so they can clear out the shelves to make space for large dishes, platters, or desserts.
  • Leftovers from parties or meetings are only fair game when left on the community kitchen counter or when the office manager sends an email saying to help yourself.
  • If there is not enough coffee left in the pot for at least

Natural Cleaning Products – Remove Odors From Your Kitchen

From chocolate chip cookies to baked fish, we cook many different things in the kitchen. But if the kitchen is starting to smell like chocolate chip baked fish, it's time to do some deodorizing. Baking soda is a simple and inexpensive natural cleaning product that will safely and effectively remove odors from your kitchen.

Refrigerators
This is one of the most well-known ways to deodorize your kitchen with baking soda. You can just open up a box or put some into a small dish and place it into your refrigerator or freezer. Stir the contents of the box or dish periodically to freshen it. Replace the box or dish every couple of months or when the refrigerator starts to smell like it's time for a replacement.

Drains
Keep your drains fresh by pouring some baking soda down them and flushing with water. Using vinegar instead of water will also help with a clogged drain. However do not add vinegar if you have just poured a commercial drain cleaner or bleach down the sink.

Garbage Cans
Garbage cans are notorious odor collectors in the kitchen. To keep yours clean and fresh, wash it out with a mixture of baking soda and water. You can also sprinkle some into the bottom of the can before adding a new trash bag.

Microwaves
Stuck-on food and lingering smells in the microwave can affect the entire kitchen. To deodorize your microwave and help remove stuck-on food, place a few tablespoons of baking soda into a bowl of water. Microwave this for a few minutes until boiling. Let it sit for a few minutes, and then remove the bowl carefully. This should remove odors and loosen any messes in the microwave, allowing you to wipe them away with a clean cloth. …

Get Ready For Guests

The holidays are coming up fast and for most of us that means various guests who probably have not set foot across your threshold since last year.

Whether your guests are coming just for the day or will be overnight visitors, this handy holiday home checklist will help make your space as inviting and comfortable for your visitors as possible.
Entrance

* Make sure all pathways and the drive are as free as they possibly can from ice and snow. Taking Grandma to the emergency room because you did not have time to grit or to make that phone call to get your driveway plowed is hard an auspicious start to the holidays.
* Another big safety precaution is to ensure all of your outdoor lighting actually works and gives off enough light that people will not be tripping over strange objects as they try to navigate their way to your front door.
* Establish a spot to gather everyone's cold weather armor (coats, hats, scarves, boots) once they are inside. If your coat closet is not big enough to accommodate it all consider designating a certain room as a cloakroom instead. You may also want to invest in a nice new doormat so that the amount of mud being tracked across your clean carpet is kept to a bare minimum.

Living Room

* Schedule a professional carpet cleaning before your guests arrive. Not only will your carpets look better but a newly cleaned carpet smells great too.
* Take the time to actually clean your windows – or hire someone else to do it for you – so that all those outdoor decorations you spent hours are actually able to be approved from indoors.

Bathrooms

* Make sure you give your bathrooms a good one over before the guests arrive. If the grout is really grimmy take out a toothbrush and clean it up with just a little hot water and dish soap.
* Apart from having a number of guest towels on hand in the bathroom, buy a few "emergency" supplies from the dollar store to give out to guests who may have forgotten to bring some of their overnight essentials like toothpaste, toothbrushes and certain other personal care items.

Kitchens

* The modern kitchen is often the real hub of holiday entertainment and social activity. Clear the clutter off the counter tops and encourage everyone to mingle by placing a few snacks and drinks out on a kitchen counter top or kitchen island.
* Make sure all your appliances work, especially those little ones you rarely use like that neat cappuccino thingy or the toaster. Although it may a little too late to go out shopping for a new stove, if your microwave has seen better days now is a great time to retire it and replace it with a newer, more energy efficient model.

Guest Bedrooms

* Clear out plenty of closet space so that your guests can actually hang their clothes up because no one …

Tips For Organizing Your Kitchen and Maybe Even Your Life!

You can have an organized kitchen whether it is a dream kitchen, simple eat in or galley. It's just a matter of placing the items in convenient places and the correct size spaces. What is nice is that any kitchen can work for the cook of the house; it just takes some time to sit back and first evaluate your needs and wants along with the preferences of the cook.

First start with cleaning out those cabinets: go through it all, throw out what you no longer use and put like items in piles. Next, if you are lucky enough to have a pantry, clean that out too! Time to get rid of those expired items and cook up the food you have. One positive of this process is that you use up what you have and save some money not going to the market that week. We all have so much extra hidden in those cabinets that one time I worked with a client that had enough extra flour and sugar to make cookies for the next six months.

Once you have all grouped items put the items back logically by having your glasses next to the refrigerator. The plates should be in close proximity to not only the stove but the kitchen table as well. The condiments should always be above or in a cabinet next to the stove. The baking supplies are always more accessible when grouped together along with the mixer & cookie sheets / pans nearby. Consider keeping all plastic storage bags together so you will always know where to reach them. Tupperware should be kept in one location along with the matching lids in baskets if the space allows. Trust me; one item no kitchen should be without is a pot rack. My kitchen would not be complete without one. The rack is such a space saver for those stainless lids and wide variety of pot sizes available at your finger tips. It really frees up precious storage space no matter what size your kitchen. If you happen to have a larger kitchen equipped with a desk than make that work for you as well. Keep the kids extra school and art supplies in the overhead cabinets. It is a good place to store those extra checks, keys, vet records & so on as well.

So go get started cleaning out the cabinets and pantry it will make cooking a pleasure when you are not hunting for items or worse yet buying what you already have in your home. After starting with your kitchen, you may inspired to clean the rest of your home, and who knows you may be taking small steps to organizing your life! Good luck and happy organizing. …

Home Improvement Tips For Smart Homeowners

When making improvements to your home, often times small things can make a big difference. Below are six little tips that you may not have thought about, but could be quite helpful in your next home project.

1. Pick out a suitable height for wall outlets. Although most electricians place outlets 12 inches up the wall from the floor, many people find that height is not high enough to be convenient. As an alternative, consider whether 16 inches might be a better height for less bending, and to get the most out of power cord length for tabletop electric items such as lamps.

2. Use a stainless steel taping knife. Use a tool made out of this material for your sheetrock taping to minimize the amount of cleanup time that is needed after the project is done, and to limit any possibility of having rust forming on the knife, which will make it useless for future projects.

3. Recycle old electronics and appliances. Many electronics recycling establishments are popping up all over the nation and will take your out of date electric products for free disposing that is a lot more eco friendly than putting them in the trash to be put into the landfill. If they're in working condition, see if a charitable organization will take them so that they can be used again for extended life before they're recycled.

4. Be organized. Know about every major element, each step of the way through the remodeling process. This will help you to ensure that your contractors will all arrive on the right days for tasks to continue progressing. When your electrician arrives at the correct point, for example, it means that the building team will not need to wait to put up the walls or ceiling.

5. Put in a dormer to turn your attic into livable space. By building a dormer or two into the attic space, a properly constructed attic will receive natural light and added height to make it a much more appealing room. This can give your home a whole new space like a home office, play room for the children, or even a guest bedroom.

6. Measure everything. There is no such thing as guessing or "eyeballing" a measurement when it comes to the perfect home renovation. More often than not, you'll find that the way that something looked inside a huge store is quite different than the way that it will appear in your residence. You do not want to end up getting a kitchen island that will consume every square inch of floor space, and returns are costly and time consuming. …

The Enduring Style, Quality, and Technology of Grohe Kitchen Faucets

Grohe is renamed for modern design, quality materials and durability, and Grohe kitchen faucets are no exception. The kitchen sink is the most heavily used and hard-working space in the kitchen "and the kitchen one of the busiest areas in the house, so it is worth putting some thought into the design of your sink and especially the faucet used.

Grohe quality starts with its superior design and construction, and Grohe's technology means that your kitchen will not only look incredible, but it will also function perfectly. For those who love to cook, Grohe's new K4 range includes dual spray pullout faucets for both prep and main sinks, along with a cold water pillar option to satiate your thirsty family. These pullout faucets would be the envy of any professional chef, and they take the hassle out of preparing food for your family.

If you have not remodeled your kitchen in quite a while, you'll be astounded by the range of quality products that Grohe offers. Forget about hauling heavy, water-filled pots from the sink, and instead rely on Grohe pot fillers that can be mounted on the wall or into the bench near your range.

Nothing beats the look of gleaming chrome in the modern kitchen, and Grohe faucets come in a choice of beautiful Grohe RealSteel or Grohe StarLight finishes, both offering long-lasting shine and ease of cleaning. Grohe RealSteel technology has the added advantage of solid stainless steel offering a lifetime of durability. Coupled with Grohes SilkMove technology, you can be assured that Grohe faucets will provide the smooth, efficient functionality that busy people need in the kitchen. SilkMove technology allows one finger control of temperature, making cold and warm water adjustments one fluid and effortless motion.

If you're thinking of remodeling your kitchen, chances are you already have a clear sense of the look that you want. Fortunately, Grohe offers a great range of designs to match the style that you have in mind, while upholding the highest standards of reliability and quality. For a minimalist, modern design, consider the Classic Line, LadyLux, and the new Eurostyle designs. For a look that says old world charm, consider the Ashford and Bridgford ranges.

Of course, the kitchen is the place where we use a lot of water, and environmental concerns are important to Grohe. When you purchase any Grohe 15 WaterCare kitchen faucets, which include all of the above designs, you can also save up to 30% on water use thanks to inbuilt water saving technology.

So plan your kitchen upgrade or new design carefully. With the Grohe quality name, cutting edge design and superior materials and technology, you can be assured of a product that is built to last and provides a practical and professional solution to everyday kitchen tasks. Imagine enjoying the real pleasure of cooking and sharing food with a skillfully designed faucet from Grohe. …