12 Essentials to Pack For Move-In Day

Packing to move can be a hassle. When you finally get the keys to your new place the last thing you want to do is be searching through boxes for essentials. If you’re scheduled to move into a new apartment with us soon, here is a list of essentials to keep in an easily-accessible (and clearly labeled) box on move-in day!

  1. Clean, dry bath towels
  2. Your toiletries (i.e. toothbrush, toothpaste)
  3. A hand soap for the bathroom
  4. Any medications you take daily
  5. A first aid kit
  6. Phone charger
  7. Sheets and pillows
  8. A shower curtain
  9. Paper plates, cups, napkins
  10. Toilet paper & paper towels
  11. Basic cleaning supplies (i.e. surface cleaner, a sponge, dish soap)
  12. Water & non-perishable snacks

 

You’ll be so glad you have these items available and nearby on your first day in your new home. We’re glad to have you as a new resident at Princeton Properties! Happy moving!

5 Tips for Caring for Poinsettias

Poinsettias are very popular in indoor, holiday decor this time of year! Many people gift them to friends and family as well. If you have some of these beautiful, red plants in your home then it’s important to know how to take care of them. Here are a few tips to consider to make your poinsettias last through the holidays!

1 – Check the soil regularly. It should not be overly wet but also not dry. It’s important to keep the soil damp.

2 – Don’t keep your poinsettias near a radiator or heating source. They will get dried out much faster this way.

3 – These beautiful, red plants prefer room-temperature water to cold water. Remember that when you’re watering.

4 – Keeping them misted regularly will help them from drying out (especially in warmer homes).

5 – If you want your poinsettia to last until next year you will need to prune it by spring time to about 10 cm. Repot it before summer and keep it in a cool, dry place until November when you can expose it to sunlight to help it bloom again.

5 Tips for Setting the Thanksgiving Table

It’s Thanksgiving week and it’s time to prepare for the big day! Before you start roasting that turkey, it’s time to think about setting the table. Here are 5 tips for setting the perfect Thanksgiving table for your guests.

 

1 – Don’t wait until Thanksgiving! Start setting your table at least one day before. Washing cutlery and ironing cloth napkins are tasks that take more time than you think. You don’t want to worry about doing those things when you need to be in the kitchen.

 

2 – Know where to place everything! Bread plates go on the left, drinking glasses on the right! Place your silverware in the order they will be used – outside to inside. Forks go to the left of the plate and knives and spoons on the right.

 

3 – Decide how you’ll serve! If your table is large consider serving your meal “family style” which means the food will go right in the center of the table. Make sure you’ve found plenty of hot plates and trivets! If you’re choosing to serve buffet-style, make sure you have a large, clean surface ready for the food (that’s not too far away from the table!)

 

4 – Decorate with a centerpiece! Many local grocery stores sell beautiful Thanksgiving centerpieces that can be picked up the day before. Rather try a DIY? Add some pumpkins, LED candles and greenery to give your table a special touch.

 

5 – Place cards are the final touch! Not only do place cards give your guests a personalized touch, they also eliminate any question or confusion as to who should sit where.

 

Enjoy and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

How to Make a Carved Pumpkin Last Through Halloween

Halloween is less than two weeks away and now is the time to think about carving those pumpkins! Whether you like a traditional jack-o-lantern or something a bit spookier, here are 5 tips to make sure your pumpkin looks great and lasts through Halloween!

 

1 – Clean the inside really well. Many carving kits come with scoops to use to scoop out all of the “guts” of the pumpkin. The seeds and guts are the part that starts to rot first. Make sure yours is as empty as possible before you start carving your design.

 

2 – Soak it in a bleach bath. After you’ve carved the perfect design, it’s time to give that pumpkin a bath. Fill a tub or bucket with water and add 1/2 cup of bleach. Let the pumpkin sit overnight (or longer if possible) before pulling it out and drying it off.

 

3 – Store is somewhere cool. When you’re not displaying your pumpkin, make room for it in your refrigerator or another cool/dry place in your home to keep it from drying out.

by: Bekir Donmez

4 – Hydrate it! Fill a spray bottle with some water and give your carved pumpkin a spray daily. This will keep is fresh and moist as well.

 

5 – Use a battery-operated candle. Flameless candles help in making the pumpkin last longer since there’s no heat drying the pumpkin from the inside. Find an LED one that flickers for a spookier effect.

 

How to Plan a New England Fall Foliage Trip

The leaves are already changing in New England and now is the perfect time to plan your day trips to see the foliage! Here are some great tips for planning a day trip this October.

 

1 – Plan your dates based on where you are headed.

Remember that foliage arrives earliest where elevation is the highest. Usually New England hits the peak foliage time during mid-October.

 

2 – Find the perfect spot.

New England offers lots of beautiful scenery including covered bridges, white churches and barns that look beautiful for foliage photography. Find some great places and snap some great shots for your Instagram!

 

3 – Bring the right footwear.

Hiking is the best way to see the most color. Wear your comfortable walking/hiking shoes so you can climb to some areas for the best views.

 

4 – Opt for a printed map rather than GPS.

Sometimes GPS doesn’t work in remote areas where the best foliage is. Also, a printed map is just more fun for a road trip!

 

5 – Stop for festive snacks.

Did someone say apple cider donuts? Hot apple cider? These are necessities for a foliage trip in New England and you’ll find plenty of farm stands that sell both!

5 Tips for Back to School Success

September is here and that means back to school! Whether you are a student, teacher or parent, going back to school can be a big change. Make the transition back to school easier in your house with these helpful tips…

 

1 – Move bedtimes up. We all get in the habit of staying up late during the summer. Now that September is here it’s important to establish a better bedtime routine (especially for kids). Move bedtime up by at least 30 minutes.

 

2 – Keep a calendar. Everyone has busy schedules in the fall with school, sports, clubs and activities. Keep a printed calendar of all of these weekday events.

 

3 – Make a kitchen command center. This is a great place to put your calendar and schedule for everyone to see. Keep hanging file folders or shelves nearby to keep important documents that the kids will need for school. (Think medical documents, permission slips, teacher’s contact information etc.)

 

4 – Meal prep. If you’re back to packing lunches it’s a great idea to meal prep on Sunday to be prepared for the week. This will save you tons of time in the morning when you’re trying to get out the door on time.

 

5 – Get caught up on laundry. There’s nothing worse than having nothing to wear while you’re running late in the morning. Take time to catch up on laundry so everyone in the house has what they need during the week clean and read to wear.

The Easiest Way to Clean Your Microwave

 

We all neglect our microwaves now and then when cleaning. It’s easy to close the door and keep the mess hidden inside. If you’ve been neglecting yours, here is a quick and easy way to remove dirt, grime, and stuck-on food!

 

1 – Fill a microwave safe bowl with water about halfway full.

2 – Add a couple tablespoons of baking soda to the bowl of water.

3 – Put the bowl in the microwave and run the microwave for about three minutes (longer if it’s really dirty).

4 – Carefully (it will be hot!) remove the bowl from the microwave.

5 – Use a damp cloth to easily wipe away all of the grime and food stains. 

 

This trick is so easy you can now clean your microwave at least once a week. Just run the microwave with the bowl of water while you’re doing other dishes and before you know it, your whole kitchen is clean!

What are some of your favorite kitchen cleaning hacks?

10 Tips For Hosting a Successful BBQ

Fourth of July is this weekend and if you’re hosting a BBQ you’re probably in full planning mode! Before Sunday arrives make sure to check out our tips below for hosting a successful BBQ with your friends and family.

 

1 – Get a headcount – You want to make sure you have enough food and drinks for your guests. Get an accurate headcount from your guest list tonight so you know what you need at the grocery store.

 

2 – Know what your guests eat – Do some guests have special dietary concerns or allergies? Make sure you have options for them so they are able to eat and enjoy themselves at your party!

 

3 – Make sure you have all the cooking supplies – No one wants to be running out to the market for missing items the day of the party. Think about condiments, ice and charcoal now!

 

4 – Make the perfect playlist – No party is complete without the perfect playlist! Music streaming services offer plenty of options and some have already put together 4th of July playlists that are perfect for your soiree.

 

5 – Have activities planned – Put out some games for your guests if you have the space! Think lawn games like cornhole or badminton for some outdoor fun!

 

6 – Think of the kids – Make sure you have food and beverage options on hand for any little ones who will be attending the party (i.e. juice, water, snacks etc.)

 

7 – Have a bad weather back up plan – Rain can certainly ruin any party. Don’t let it ruin yours! Make sure you have a backup plan and a space for guests to go if the weather doesn’t cooperate.

 

8 – Have festive accessories – Nothing says 4th of July like red, white and blue apparel! Pick up some beads, glasses or hats for your guests to wear while they celebrate!

 

9 – Prepare for the sun and bugs – Stock up on bug spray and sunscreen and have it out so guests can help themselves if needed.

 

10 – Have fun – The most important tip is to remember to have fun! Hosting a party can be stressful but if you follow these steps you should be well-prepared and able to enjoy yourself.

 

5 Ways to Keep Your Pets Safe in a Heat Wave

We haven’t officially hit the first day of summer yet and the temperatures outside are already scorching! Putting on sunscreen and drinking plenty of water are important for us during these hot days, but what about our pets? If you’re wondering what you can do for them to keep them safe and healthy in the heat keep reading.

 

1 – Make sure to offer your pet plenty of water throughout the day. If you’re going to be taking your pet outside or in the car bring water for them in a bottle that you can pour into a bowl when they need it.

2 – Be mindful of their paws! Pavement can get really hot during this time of year. If you’re going to take your pet for a walk try and do it on a grassy or shady area.

3 – Dogs can get much hotter much quicker than a human. They don’t have as many sweat glands as we do so they need chances to sit down in the shade and cool off.

4 – Never leave your dog in a car during the summer. Even with windows down, cars directly in the sun can heat up quickly. Leave your dog home while running errands if the temperatures are going to be too hot.

5 – Make sure to know the signs of overheating in a pet. If they are experiencing heavy panting, vomiting or wobbly legs they may be suffering from heat exhaustion. You can move them to a cool place, offer them water and even put a damp towel on them to cool them off.

10 Cooking Hacks to Save You Time in the Kitchen

Do you hate cooking at home and find yourself ordering out more often than you should? Start ditching the delivery and cut down time in the kitchen with these awesome tips and hacks.

 

1 – Like breakfast sandwiches but don’t want to make one every morning? You can poach a dozen eggs at once using a muffin tin. Refrigerate/freeze the eggs and pull one out to reheat on your toast each morning.

 

2 – Fast forward your fruit ripening by keeping your fruits in a paper bag.

 

3 – Making mashed potatoes? Don’t waste time peeling the skin. Instead, boil them with the skin on and it will fall off in the water. Better yet, mash them with the skins on for a more textured mash potato dish.

 

4 – Use cooking spray to coat your measuring cups. This will help keep foods from sticking to them when baking.

 

5 – Having leftover pizza? Reheat it in a skillet on your stove top rather than the oven to save time.

 

6 – Love a morning smoothie? Put your fruit and veggies into freezer bags. Put one in the fridge each night to throw into the blender the next morning.

 

7 – Put a piece of white bread in your cookie jar to keep your cookies from getting hard and eventually needing to be tossed in the trash.

 

8 – Dice up a bunch of vegetables and store them in freezer bags. These are great to use as soup starters. You can toss the pre-cut veggies in your crockpot and add your desired broth.

 

9 – Having a birthday party? Pre-scoop your ice cream and put them on cupcake liners in a muffin tin. Pull one out for each plate at cake time.

 

10 – Need to soften butter on the counter? Cut it into tablespoon sizes .The smaller pieces will soften a whole lot faster than the whole stick.