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Grass and All Its Health Benefits – 7 Great Reason to Appreciate Grass

 

Grass

It’s summertime and families are spending more time enjoying the outdoors, entertaining with barbecues and patio parties and playing in the backyard. Studies show that green space and landscaping contribute to health, happiness and intellect. The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (www.opei.org/stewardship), shares seven reasons to be thankful grass is part of our living landscapes.

Reason #1:

Our yards are incredible oxygen making machines and they cleanse the air too!  A grass area measuring 50 X 50 feet will produce enough oxygen to meet the daily needs of a family of four.  Research has also shown that turfgrass removes atmospheric pollutants such as carbon dioxide, ozone, hydrogen fluoride, and perosyzacetyle nitrate from the air. Grass also plays a vital role in capturing dust, smoke particles and other pollutants.

Reason #2:

Grass cools down your community and the area around your home. This is especially important in cities, where asphalt, hardscape and plastic turf radiate heat. Grass dissipates radiant heat through a process called evapotranspiration, which combats the heat island effect.

Reason #3:

Your lawn combats climate change. Grass is the largest carbon sink in the country, absorbing the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide that is warming up our planet. An average-sized home lawn has the potential to sequester 20.3 to 163.4 kg C per lawn per year. The dense canopy and fibrous root system in your lawn sequesters carbon so well, that it outweighs the carbon used to maintain the grass by as much as seven-fold.

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Reason #4:

Your lawn helps control water runoff and erosion.  Grass acts like a sponge and prevents water from “running off” into area sewer drains and carrying anything it collects along the way – like motor oil, dirt, or trash.  Grass cleans the water it collects and breaks down harmful microbes and pollutants, keeping them out of groundwater supplies. The natural filtration system in your lawn is so effective that rain water filtered through a healthy lawn is often as much as 10 times less acidic than water running off a hard surface like a sidewalk or hardscape. It also prevents flooding and soil erosion by “hanging on” to soil.

Reason #5: 

Grass reduces noise. Grass cuts down on excessive sound, a growing problem in urban areas, where hardscape and pavement reverberate noise. Grass slopes alongside lowered expressways reduce noise 8-10 decibels.

Reason #6:

Your lawn can make you happier. Research shows that knowing and experiencing nature, including grass, makes us generally happier, healthier people. Studies show that even just looking out a window at green spaces can lower our stress levels. Walking or running in green spaces, instead of synthetic environments, led to decreased anger, fatigue and feelings of depression, while increasing attention levels.

Reason #7:

Your children and pets benefit from your lawn. A usable outdoor area provides a safe place for children and pets to play, while providing a spacious living area for the entire family. Outdoor play increases fitness levels and builds active, healthy bodies, an important strategy in helping the one in three American kids who are obese get fit. Research also shows that children’s stress levels fall within minutes of seeing green spaces.

These are just a few of the reasons to be grateful for our grass. Hundreds of varieties of turf grass exist, and some of them even work well in regions affected by drought.

To get more information and tips on maintaining your lawn visit www.opei.org/stewardship.

Yard

*This is a guest post. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are that of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect my own. 

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Spring Cleaning: Making tough jobs a breeze with the power of Mean Green

 

Housecleaning

Let me tell you a secret… our place is a mess! I have been working extra hours at work, and covering for a co-worker, so I have not had time to fully clean our home from top to bottom. I have been doing spot cleaning, but as far as a really good cleaning, that has not happened yet. It’s driving me NUTS! I cannot stand having a messy house.

When it comes to cleaning I am not a big fan. I know some people are really into cleaning – as in they actually ENJOY it. Not me! I cannot stand cleaning. I do however appreciate a clean home. There is noting more satisfying than knowing our home is perfectly cleaned.

This Saturday I am going to stay home and clean each room from top to bottom. Not that I’m looking forward to it, but I am looking forward to a clean home.

When it comes to cleaning I like to use products that I can use in more than one area of our home. I also like products that do more than one thing. For example, clean and disinfect at the same time. There is such a product. It’s Mean Green Antibacterial Multi-Surface Cleaner.

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Mean Green Antibacterial Multi-Surface Cleaner does just clean tough grease and grime – it is also an antibacterial, killing harmful germs (99%). In fact, it can kill some viruses, like Salmonella and E-Coli in 10 minutes. Did I mention I’m a  “germ-o-phobe?” I’m not a crazy one where I can’t touch anything without disinfecting it first, but I do make sure to disinfect many areas of our home including door knobs and remote controls.

I appreciate that while I am cleaning up all the gunk and grime from my kitchen or bathroom, I am also disinfecting the area too. You accomplish two thing in one product.

Mean Green Antibacterial Multi-Surface Cleaner is great to use in the kitchen, bathroom and other areas of your home both inside and out. I’ve used this to clean the grime on our outside tables (how they get that dirty when we have a balcony I’ll never know).

We have pets and teenagers, so you know we have messy surfaces almost everywhere in our home. I use this product to not only clean and disinfect, but also to deodorize. The cleaner has a pleasant smell. Unlike other cleaners, this product doesn’t have a harsh, chemical scent. The product does not contain bleach, harsh acids or phosphates.

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Getting ready to tackle a messy stove top.

I have been using this product to spot clean around my home (kitchen counter tops, around the bathroom, where our pet dishes are – they can be messy sometimes). It’s great for spot cleaning. I am planning to do a MAJOR Spring cleaning this weekend (better late than never – LOL) and this product will be front and center in my tote where I store my products that I take from room to room.

Whether you are doing an intense Spring cleaning, or just touching up around your home until you have time for a deeper clean, consider using a product that not only cleans, but disinfects too like Mean Green Antibacterial Multi-Surface Cleaner. Not to mention the clean, fresh scent too.

If you would like to learn more about this and other Mean Green products, visit MeanGreenDegreaser.com. You can also check out the brand on social media. All of their links are found at the top of their website.

Mean Green products are sold at many retail locations including Walmart, Dollar General, Family Dollar and Lowes, to name a few.

Have you ever tried any Mean Green products? If so, which one/ones? What did you think about them? Feel free to share your thoughts. I always love to hear from readers.

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Kimberly

*I received free sample to review as well as compensation. The opinions expressed are entirely my own and not influenced in any way. 

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Check out this fun idea for a Summer project (or a cool Father’s Day gift idea)

 

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Now that summer is here many children are already out of school celebrating their “freedom” for the next 8-10+ weeks.

Usually the first week or two if fun and exciting, but after that many children tend to get bored and whine those infamous words most parents hate to hear “I’m bored. There is nothing to do.” I whined those very same words when I was a child. In hindsight I should have savored all those free moments. Now that I am an adult and work all the time, I dream of a day when I can do nothing at all.

What children need is a project or activity they can do that will provide them with some entertainment. It’s a bonus if that activity/project is also educational.

Here is one idea that I came up with at work. I work with children doing before/after school care with the local school district.

Some of my afternoon kids and I were outside on the playground equipment. I took a glance at the app I have on my phone to see how many steps I have done that day. I have a goal of 10,000 steps Monday through Friday. So far this week I have done four out of five days over 10,000 steps.

One of the kids asked me what I was doing and I told him. I went on to tell him (and a few other kids) that getting 10,000+ steps in daily is good for you. One of the kid was wearing a pedometer on his sock and had already done 14,000+ steps that day.

Not only did this open up a discussion about health and exercise, but the kids also wanted to take my phone and walk around to see how many steps between places.

I think giving a pedometer to a child and challenge them to get 10,000+ steps in would be a fun and educational activity for children. You could even reward them when they reach over 10,000 steps.

Another fun idea that is also educational is to plant something. Not only would the child have the fun experience of planting something, but they also get to learn about the plant and watch it grow. In addition they would need to tend to the plant, which is also an activity they can do over the summer and beyond.

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One plan suggestion would be a Venus Fly Trap.

I know some people will think that is an odd choice, but the plants are actually fascinating.

Venus Fly Traps are carnivorous plants, which mean they eat meat. Yes, that’s right – MEAT! They don’t for for steaks and hamburgers, but rather spiders, flies and other insects.

When an insect comes in contact with the Venus Fly Traps mouth it triggers something which causes the mouth to shut down on the insect, trapping it inside. Digestive enzymes then break down the victim so that the plant can consume it and it’s nutrients.

It sounds disgusting, but it really is fascinating to watch.

The website Calendars.com has a Venus Fly Trap kit you can purchase. It’s called the Venus Fly Trap Cube. It come with everything you need to grow you own Venus Fly Trap plants.

Calendars.com sent me one to review.

Kit

The kit come with the following;

  • Planting cube and lid
  • Potting soil
  • Seeds
  • Planter stick
  • Directions

Set up is easy. Simply place the potting soil disc into the planting cup and add 2 cup of distilled water (I used tap water). Once the disc dissolves you are left with very web potting soil.

Soil

Carefully remove the seeds from the packaging (the seeds are incredibly tiny!). Stick them into the oil about 1/8″ down and cover with soil.

Pop the lid on and place the container in a sunny window sill (ours is outside on a table – we don’t have a window sill).

The container helps to keep the plants warm and the humidity inside helps to keep thing moist. You can add extra water only when needed.

In about 8 weeks you’ll start to see the plants.

Venus Fly Trap

Venus Fly Traps do go dormant. The directions provide you with complete care instructions.

I wish I had known about this kit months ago. I would have suggested it for a fun summer activity a long time ago. None the less kids can still enjoy it if you purchase it now. The kit is just $16.99 on Calendars.com.

This would also make a fun gift for Father’s Day. The kids can help dad to get the seeds planted, then dad can take it to work with him and grow it on his desk or office window. Dad can have fun watching the plants feed while he’s at work. It’s certainly a more creative gift idea than a tie or mug.

Calendars.com has plenty of other gift ideas for dads and grads too (don’t forget the graduates!). The also have plenty of products that would be fun to enjoy this summer.

Here are just a few ideas.

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A fun football game dad can enjoy at the office or just about anywhere.
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My afternoon kids have this game and they LOVE it. It’s a lot of fun. They laugh a lot when they play this too. This is a game kids and parents can both enjoy.

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This is another creative gift idea for dad. I just recommend that you DON’T give it to him at work. LOL!

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Another fun game the whole family can enjoy.

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Nothing beats the classics like a Yo-Yo. If your dad is a big kid at heart he would probably enjoy this too. 201500012524

This is another fun game that could also work well for a Father’s Day gift.

If you would like to learn more about these or other great gifts ideas visit Calendars.com. You can also connect with them on social media. All of their links are found on the bottom of their website.

What do you think about these ideas? Would any of them make a great gift idea for your dad?

What about something fun to do for the summer? Would the Venus Fly Trap make a good activity for your child?

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Kimberly

*I received a free product sample to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

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Save 15% off beautiful gifts from Precious Moments

 

The other day I wrote a post about a wonderful campaign Precious Moments has going on all month long in celebration of the 35th Anniversary. The promotion is called “35 Years of Loving, Caring and Sharing.” Each day there is a special theme. With each theme comes different pieces that are available at 15% off for ONE DAY ONLY.

You can learn the “deal of the day” on the Precious Moments Facebook page. Be sure to bookmark the page or follow them on Facebook so that you don’t miss out on the daily deals. The deals end at 11:59 PM (CST) each day, so if you see a piece you are interested in and want to take advantage of the special discount, I would recommend that you don’t delay and that you order right away.

Today’s theme is “Dance.”

Dance as if no one is watching! Precious Moments’ figurines You Sparkle With Grace And Charm and Your Heart Speaks Through Dance tap into the joyful feeling of those who practice moving effortlessly to the music. Sashay over to Precious Moments to receives 15% off* this figurine and other dance inspired figurines using promo code DANCE2016.

If you would like to see what pieces are available you can visit this page.

Here are a few examples.

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I LOVE their Disney pieces. Snow White (seen above) is adorable!

Tomorrow’s theme is “Humility.” Humility means being humble. I think that is a quality that I possess. I accept compliments, but I don’t truly believe them. Just yesterday a co-worker was complimenting me on some of my photographs and told me that I was very good and my nature photos should be on the pages of National Geographic. I was grateful for her compliments and kind words, but I don’t see my photos that way.

The kids I work with and my co-workers compliment me often on my doodles and tell me I’m a good “artist.” I always tell them that I am not an artist – I’m just someone who enjoys doodling.

Here is a Shrek and Donkey one I did the other day.

Shrek

Precious Moments selected some special pieces for tomorrow’s theme (“Humility”), which is also being considered “Beautiful Wishes.”

The sale of the pieces for “Humility” / “Beautiful Wishes” is for TOMORROW (June 16, 2016). If you purchase the pieces today they will not be eligible for the 15% off discount.

The discount code for TOMORROW’S sale is BEAUTIFULWISH and is valid on JUNE 16, 2016 ONLY. I am just writing about it now to give reader’s a “heads up” so they don’t miss out on it.

Check out some of the pieces on sale this Thursday.

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Teacher

I have one of the pieces that will be on sale June 16, 2016 (Thursday). The piece is called “You Make Everyday Brighter.”

“You Make Everyday Brighter” 1

“You Make Everyday Brighter” 2

“You Make Everyday Brighter” 3

This charming little girl (fairy?) is wearing a sparkly dress (as seen in the photo). There is also a clear, diamond-like gem stone inside the Daisy flower she is holding.

You can see that a lot of effort went into the details in this piece, right down to the itty bitty Ladybug.

I have this piece on a bookcase near our sliding glass door. Some sunlight reaches it which makes her dress really sparkle and shine. It catches my eye when I walk through our living room.

It’s very colorful and reminds me of Spring/Summer. I also think it’s a “happy” piece because it makes me smile when I look at it.

There are similar pieces (girls/fairies with flowers) on sale with this piece.

Don’t forget!!! Today (June 15, 2016) the theme is “Dance” (discount code is DANCE2016). Tomorrow’s theme (June 16, 2016) is “Humility” / “Beautiful Wishes” and that discount code is BEAUTIFULWISH. 

For more information about Precious Moments visit PreciousMoments.com. You can also follow the brand on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram. Be sure to follow them on Facebook so you know what each day’s special is during the promotion. They are also hosting giveaways.

Kimberly

*I received a free product to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

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What’s in YOUR rug?

 

Vacuuming

Your home might be extraordinarily clean, but what’s lurking under your rug could surprise you, in spite of frequent vacuuming. This infographic from Ahdoot Oriental Rugs made me realize just how important it is to have your rug cleaned by professionals on a yearly basis (or more often if you have pets and kids!). Get ready for some shocking statistics, friends.

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Kimberly

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The weather is warmer… time to move things outdoors

 

Entertaining

FINALLY! The warmer weather is here. Of course I am enjoying it now because there is little humidity and the temperatures have not cracked 80 degrees – yet. The moment the thermometer starts to go past 80, and the humidity kicks in, I don’t like to be outdoors anymore. I’m not a fan of heat, humidity or sun. I’m Welsh, Norwegian, Irish and Scottish. We are not exactly known for our glowing tan. LOL!

I love to entertain. I hope and pray every day that something will happen (in a positive way) where we can finally have a house with a yard. Living in a teeny, tiny condo is no fun. It’s also not ideal for entertaining. If we have a bigger home and a yard I would want to entertain almost every weekend.

When I do get to entertain I put my whole heart and soul into it. I try and make everything look wonderful – right down to the smallest detail. I often joke that I turn into Martha Stewart when I am entertaining guests or hosting a party. I’m the type of person who loves to create “tablescapes,” music playlists for the occasion and even place setting markers so guests know where to sit.

My dream is to one day have a home with a yard so that I can utilize the yard for entertaining as well. Right now we have a rickety old wooden 6′ x 12′ balcony. At the most you can seat four people out there. We also cannot hang things up. I want to hang up outside lights to make the get together more fun.

When guests come to my home I want them to feel welcomed.

I am also a fan of personalizing things so that people won’t soon forget having dinner, lunch or brunch with me and my family. Cloth napkins with monograms, personalized stemware and coasters with family photos on them are a great way to show off your family’s pride to your guests. I personally own a few of these items.

Another wonderful way to personalize your next event is with personalized cutting/serving boards.

I recently learned about a company called Everything Etched. They offer a variety of times that can be personalized. My favorites are their wood cutting/serving boards.

Cutting board 1

I can easily picture these beautiful cutting/serving boards set out for a backyard picnic, barbecue or a fancy “grown-ups only” late night gathering with wine, cheese and fresh fruits (similar to what is displayed in the photos).

What I like about these cutting/serving boards is that they are not only serve different purposes (cutting board, serving board…) but they can easily go from an informal backyard barbecue with burgers, hot dogs and beer (similar to what is pictured above) to a fancy dinner party with wine, cheese and finger foods.

Cutting board 2

I think have personalized items at your events adds a touch of class. It also shows your guests that you are proud of you and your family and you want them all to know that your family welcomes them there.

If you are combining your efforts for one big, multi-family party, having personalized items also makes it easier to find your property. It would be easier to find a cutting/serving board with your name on it than an ordinary left over or casserole dish.

The cutting/serving boards from Everything Etched would also make a delightful gift for new homeowners, newlyweds or for those who love to entertain like me.

Everything Etched also has other personalized products that would be ideal for entertaining. Here are just a few that I picked out that I liked from their website.

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Just look how beautiful and detailed their etched products are – right down to the swirly accents.

The personalized barbecue utensil, decanter and bottle opener would make great Father’s Day gifts. They carry plenty of great gift ideas for mom too.

Aside from the lovely cutting/serving boards one of my favorite products Everything Etched carries are Wine Cork Shadow Boxes. If you entertain a lot and serve wine often, this would be great to have. Not only does it show your guests how much you enjoy being friends with them, you can also see how many gatherings you have had by the number of corks in the shadow box.

Everything Etched offers the Wine Cork Shadow Boxes with a variety of personalized options too.

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I like that you don’t have to order a lot of products. Some sites that personalize products for you require that you purchase multiple products (for example, four wine glasses). Everything Etched sells their products individually, so you order only what you want, even if it’s just one.

Everything Etched’s turnaround time for orders is very quick too. Normally items are shipped within 1-2 days after placing your order. That’s fast! Especially considering these are personalized items.

Everything Etched is a small company located in Arizona. The company also prides themselves on excellent customer service. They treat customers as people – not order numbers. They take care to make sure every design meet’s their customer’s specifications. They also have a 5 star rating with over 1000 reviews.

If you would like to check out all the products available at Everything Etched you can visit their website, www.EverythingEtched.com.

You can save 15% off your purchases until August 31, 2016 using the discount code SheScribesEE15.

Do you like to entertain?

Do you prefer casual entertaining or formal entertaining?

What do you think about the products from Everything Etched? Did something catch your eye? Feel free to tell me about it. I always love to hear from readers.

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Kimberly

*I have partnered with the brand to bring you this information. Although compensated the opinions expressed are entirely my own and not influenced in any way. 

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