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5 Quick and Easy Home Organization Tips

You can get your home organized easily by just taking a few small steps every day. Getting your house organized does not have to be overwhelming. These five home organization tips show you how to get organized in just a few minutes every day. Doing every one of these daily should not take you more than 15 minutes each time.

1. File 10 pieces of paper every day.

Now if more than 10 pieces of paper that have to be filed come into your home every day, you'll need to up this number. One of the biggest challenges in home organization is finding a place for the paper that comes into your home. You would be surprised by what a big difference it makes to take this small step daily. It will help that overflowing "to-be-filed" tray slowly shrink down and help you feel like your home is getting organized.

2. Toss one thing from your kitchen that you do not use.

Your regular everyday trash does not count here. It has to be something that has been hanging around your kitchen for a long time and is something that you know you do not use. I have included this home organization tip as a daily one because the kitchen is one of those places in the home that tends to collect things. Gadgets, spices and that great item that was on sale for such a good deal but is something that your family will never actually eat. If you do not use it or do not like it, toss it out or donate it. It is just hindering you in your home organization journey.

3. Find a permanent home for one thing in your house.

If you're like many people, getting your house organized has seemed like a big job because nothing in your home seems to "live" in one spot. Your kids' toys end up in the living room, kitchen, bedroom and sometimes even in your bed. One of the best ways to get your home organized is by just giving every item in your home a place where it "lives." Every day find a place for an item in your home that is currently homeless. And if you want to keep your home organized, then make sure that everyone in your home knows where that item's home now is.

4. Toss one item of clothing from your closet.

The closet is one of those places that seem to defy all home organization attempts. Often because there is simply too many clothes for the space. The absolute best piece of home organizing advice I can give you here is this: downsize. Every day take one thing from your closet that either no longer fits you or that you know you would not be caught dead in anyway.

5. Organize one drawer or shelf.

For this particular home organization tip, I suggest that you start small. Start off by organizing a small drawer. If you have small drawers in your bathroom, that is a great place to start. Now when you find one shelf or drawer in your home to organize, make sure that you actually organize it. Take everything out, toss what you do not need anymore and put back the things you do need in some sort of orderly fashion that makes sense for you. There will be areas where you will want to rethink how that whole area of your home is organized. Going through the drawers and shelves of that area individually will help you know what you have in that area and will help you get that part of your home organized more easily when you are ready to tackle that project later on.

 


The Benefits of High Efficiency Washing Machines

Being green is all the rage these days and with good cause. Conserving energy and water is a great way to help the environment. Best of all, these energy efficient washers have the added benefit of saving you money over time. There are lots of front load washers on the market today, and for those looking for a more traditional top loader, there are still options available.

High efficiency (HE) washing machines are available from trusted manufacturers such as Maytag, Kenmore, Whirlpool, GE and Fisher Paykel. Many models are available in a rainbow of colors to suit the décor of any household, particularly if the machine will be in a high visibility area such as the kitchen. Whether you are looking for a front load washer or a more traditional top load configuration, there are many options to choose from with a variety of capacities to suit your laundry needs.

There are several physical feature benefits of high efficiency washers. In front load models, there is a compartment for adding HE detergent, fabric softener and bleach. Top loaders generally have more traditional receptacles for these liquids. High efficiency top load washers will generally not have an agitator in the tub. The tub movement and the water, which jets to tumble the laundry, agitate the clothes. No agitator means less wear on your clothing, saving you the cost of replacing worn or torn items.

High efficiency washers must use high efficiency laundry detergent. HE detergent is available in both liquid and powder form. The difference between regular laundry detergent and HE detergent is that you use less high efficiency laundry soap and it suds less and rinses better. Because laundry soap tends not to dissolve properly in very cold water, many machines are calibrated to ensure that the water on the cold cycle is at least 30 degrees Fahrenheit. Look for the HE symbol on detergent packages.

HE washers are designed to use a minimal amount of water with each cycle. This, combined with the fact that they spin clothes much better than regular washers, means less drying time and greater energy savings. In the U.S., high efficiency washers are Energy Star compliant and your electric and water bills will noticeably drop, offsetting the slightly higher price of your washer over time. Some power companies also offer rebates when you upgrade to a high efficiency model, making HE washers even more affordable. In late 2009 or early 2010, states will also be offering consumers rebates on Energy Star compliant washers purchased once the program is in effect.

As you can see, high efficiency washers are a must when it comes to being environmentally conscious and saving money. An HE washer, over its lifetime, will pay for itself in energy and water savings. These washers also are much gentler on your clothing and decrease your dry cycle, reducing your costs even further. If you are in the market for a new washing machine, a high efficiency washer should be your first choice.

 


How to Clean Wood Furniture

If you're looking at your furniture and wondering why you ever bought it in the first place, it may just be in dire need of a good cleaning. Even if you dust your wood furniture regularly, the cleaning products you use, especially polish and waxes, can build up over time, causing a once beautiful grain to become muddy and dull looking.

Unfortunately, using even more cleaning products won't restore the wood to the glorious look that caused you to buy it in the first place. Instead, you need to give it a thorough cleaning using products that will strip off the oils, grime, waxes and dirt that have collected over the years. The first thing you should know is that every piece of wood furniture can have different cleaning requirements. So you really want to find the manufacturer's original cleaning instructions or look online to see if there's a copy there.

If you really want to get the dirt out and restore the luster, avoid commercial wood soaps. They really aren't strong enough to remove the grime that has built up. The best product out there also is less costly than commercial products. In a clean jar, create a mixture that's one part turpentine, one part vinegar and two parts linseed oil. It' OK if you make too much. Just don't make too little for the project at hand.

After stirring this mixture up, it's time to get down to the cleaning. Make sure you do this outdoors or in a well ventilated place. Turpentine fumes can really make you sick if you're not letting them vent properly. Lay down some drop cloths to catch any of the mixture that drips. This is another reason why you probably want to go outside when you're planning to clean wood furniture. Before you do the whole piece of furniture, you'll want to apply the mixture to a part that doesn't show. It's always best to test so you know what the results of your hard work will be. In some cases, especially with older furniture, a good cleaning can substantially lighten the wood. You may discover that you actually like it dirty.

If everything looks good to you, dip some fine steel wool into the mixture. Use small circular strokes to scrub the wood lightly. As you finish each section, wipe it off with a clean rag. You'll be amazed at how much dirt comes off.
Be sure you clean wood furniture a little at a time. You don't want the mixture to dry out. Continue cleaning the furniture until it has a uniform appearance. Dispose of the mix and any rags safely. Turpentine is highly flammable so treat it with respect. Now that your wood furniture is clean, you want to keep it maintained. You should regularly dust your furnishings, but don't be tempted to pour on more polish or wax. Instead, use some furniture oil and rub it into the wood to nurture it and keep it from cracking or becoming brittle.

If you notice water stains in the furniture, you can try laying a cloth over the spot and placing a warm iron over it. Or rub in some lemon oil and see if that does the trick. This also works for stains from cosmetics, medicines or alcohol, by the way. Burns can be removed with a powdered pumice/linseed oil paste. Rub it into the burn and keep repeating this until the burn is gone. Spilled milk can be removed by using a cloth that has been dipped into ammonia or silver polish. Be sure to wipe the area with a clean cloth when you're through. Whatever you do, treat your wood lovingly once you've taken the time to give it a deep cleaning. Resist the temptation to lavish it with Pledge or other commercial waxes or polishes and your love affair with your wood furniture should last a long time.

 


Why Your Marketing Plan Should Include A Blog

Blogging is a great way for a business to effectively market their product or service without spending a lot of money. There are many benefits of business blogging. Businesses that keep up with a blog can introduce their products or services to consumers and can better communicate their customers. In addition, businesses that blog can understand what their customers want and serve them better.

A blog, sometimes called Weblog, is defined as a web page that serves as a journal or diary for individuals. Most blog writers update their blog on a regular basis and writers often share what most interests them. Individuals are not the only ones that have found blogging beneficial. Businesses have learned that this new way to communicate is a good marketing tool for their products and services.

Every company should consider have a regular blog for their businesses. Larger businesses may opt to hire a several special writers with certain areas of expertise to update their blog. A smaller company may have one writer that can effectively write about their product. The idea of blogging for any size business is to get the word out to readers. A reader who frequents a certain blog is more likely to share the blog with others. Also, blogging is a great marketing tool because it allows consumers to be better informed.

When a business chooses to blog, it allows them to introduce their product or service to consumers. Keywords and search engines help consumers quickly find the blog they are looking for with ease. For example, if a company specializes in making handmade jewelry and keeps a blog that is on a search engine, then that search engine would list their blog on a search. Blogging allows customers to research the product they are looking for with ease.

Companies that keep a regular can also use their blog to communicate with their readers and customers. There are many features that a blog site can offer that will allow a reader to enter comments and contact the writer. Companies that encourage their readers to leave comments can take the comments and improve their services and products. In addition, companies can email their customers back and let them know that they are interested in what they have to say. In addition, a company that uses blogging to market their service or product should always rely on an experienced writer to update the blog. Business blogs should be polished and easy to read.

Another good reason why businesses and companies should include a blog in their marketing plan is because a blog provides a unique way to understand what customers want. Companies that are in tuned with their customer's needs and wishes can better serve them. Keeping an updated blog will initiate more customer communication that can help a company know right away how to improve. Blogs provide good public relations and are generally much cheaper to maintain than a regular web site. Also, a business that keeps a blog can reach out to other complimenting companies and link those blog sites together. This will help build readership and customers.

When setting up a blog for business purposes it is important to look for a blog-hosting site that can offer the right kind of features. Most businesses will use a site that can offer them more search engines and options to add links and URLs on their page. Free blog sites may not have the capabilities to offer as many features as the ones that charge a monthly fee. The search engine option is very important for a company that keeps a blog. This will ensure that readers can easily locate the company's blog page. Also, a company setting up a blog should always keep the links and contact information within the blog current. A customer will not want to continue using a blog page that is full of broken links or outdated contact information. If a company relies on their customers to read the blog, then those customers will always rely on the company to make their blog experience a positive one.

Blogging can be a great marketing tool for any size business. It is important for businesses to realize that blogs are not a passing fad, but a unique way to interact with customers and gain recognition in a particular field.

 


How To Decide Between Free Web Hosting And Paid Web Hosting For Your Blog

There are many choices for web hosting companies available and for blogging there are many free choices offered as well. The question that comes to mind to me is, "Is free webhosting cheap?" What I mean by that is what is it going to cost me in terms of functionality and accessibility. Let's take a look at some of the comparisons between free web hosting and paid web hosting.

Unless you have been living under a rock for the last couple of years then you know that blogging has become a formidable force on the internet and has allowed many people to get an online presence that may otherwise have been unable to do so. Many of these people are making their living by blogging and some like Jason Calcanis have become wealthy from it. Jason built a network of blogs over about eighteen months and sold them to AOL for nearly $30 million! That's a pretty good ROI. Anyway, I digress, back to our discussion on web hosting.

If you have decided that you want to operate a blog your next choice will probably be what blogging platform or software you want to use to accomplish you blogging. Relax, it's easy. Most of the blogging software out there today is open source which means it's, you guessed it, free! In this instance free is not a bad thing, I use Wordpress almost exclusively, it is free and has more options that I care to learn or use. There are other blogging software options available, but I won't go into them here because this article is about web hosting.

As far as web hosting for your blog you can choose free web hosting or paid so let's take a closer look at our choices. First off, you can choose Blogger which is owned by Google. Blogger is a good program especially for beginning bloggers because it is easy to use, it is web based, and the price is right. It's free. With that said however, if your intention is to blog professionally and possibly run a large number of blogs with automated content then Blogger is not for you. I have seen Google shut down many blogs because they considered them to be spam. If you want control over your own destiny then you want to use paid web hosting and have your blogs on your own server, or at least a shared server.

Still in the realm of free web hosting you also have a fairly new option from Wordpress who now offers a free web hosting for Wordpress blogs at their .com site as opposed to the .org site where you get the software and plug ins. The problem is that like Google, they are very restrictive with what you can put on your blogs and how you update them.

Another big issue with free web hosting is that you will usually have to display advertising of some sort which "pays" for your web hosting. This is great for the web hosting companies because it gives them tons of virtual real estate out there with their name on it, not so great for you. If you are blogging professionally, and if you are trying to make money for it then you are blogging professionally, you do not want any distractions on your site that leads visitors away from your site unless you are being paid for it like you do when someone clicks on an Adsense ad or affiliate banner.

My recommendation is that you pay for your own hosting because it gives you a wealth of choices, much more storage space, and takes almost all restrictions off of you within reason. There are still some web hosting companies that will not allow you to host gambling or porno blogs but other than that you are pretty open. Paid web hosting is not that expensive. You can get an account that will host as many blogs as most people will want to deal with a few bucks a month. So for the cost of a domain name and your hosting you will probably be around $100 a year. That is a pretty cheap investment for something that enables you to plug into all the ways of earning money on the net.

 


The Wild Ride of Online Marketing

To paraphrase Bill Gates, any business that does not have an internet presence is not going to be in business for long. There was a time when brick and mortar businesses could stand up for themselves with a little print advertising to help draw in customers.

That time has passed as the competitive world of business is spread out from serving a single community to being able to ship products anywhere in the world. As the internet has become the most popular place to search for a business consumers can conduct all the research about a product and do their comparison shopping at one time and locate the exact product that they are looking for at the best price available to them.

The internet truly is a modern marvel where every company has the need for business internet marketing. In the early days of the world wide web businesses could throw together a website, host it on the internet and forget about it, but as the internet has grown and matured web surfers have come to rely on updated and accurate information about businesses that keep the surfers coming back to revisit sites that are popular.

Strategies for developing advertising business internet marketing plans go far beyond simple website hosting. Site architecture, site mapping, keyword integration and content relevance all form the basic strategy for business internet marketing that is then enhanced to include page links to related industry sites and the constant task of submitting relevant articles about the business to reliable online publishing sources.

Beyond these business internet marketing tactics, advertising a business with internet marketing involves the steady consistency of adding supplemental web content and updates to the business website. Paid online advertising business internet marketing campaigns add to comprehensive business internet marketing plans by paying for placement in search engine results pages for relevant keyword searches that are associated with a businesses website and offerings.

Rounding out the online media mix is the element of social business internet marketing that utilizes word of mouth marketing to spread the word about a business through what is referred to as viral marketing. Viral or social business internet marketing ties back to the business website through links and is popularized among blog sites and digital video sites where internet users can go to view an array of product tie in videos that are noncommercial in appearance or appeal to social web surfers.

The success of business internet marketing is an oxymoron to traditional offline marketing strategies, however creating advertising business internet marketing takes as much if not more strategic planning and calculated execution to work effectively and to skyrocket the online business sales.

 




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