Start Planning for Summer Vacation Now With These Tips!

Memorial Day is next week which means the unofficial start to summer is almost here! Pool days and outdoor fun are in order for the whole family for the next few months. Here are some great ways you can help your family prepare for summer now so you can enjoy fun in the sun!

 

1 – Make sure you purchase new sunscreens. Sunscreen has a shelf life just as food does. Check expiration dates on yours to make sure you are keeping your family safe in the sun.

2 – Do the same for your insect repellents! If you prefer natural remedies, make sure to stock up on essential oils like peppermint to repel the bugs.

3 – Locate and wash the swimsuits and pool towels. Pack a beach bag that has towels, sunscreen, bug sprays etc. so it’s always ready for an unexpected pool day.

4 – Start making plans for summer activities. Look out for local camp signups,  community events and mark any special dates on your calendar.

5 – Prepare a summer schedule for the kids so they know what to expect. It might include chores, sports, camps and of course plenty of downtime to have fun and relax.

6 – Pack the car with beach chairs, a blanket, sand toys and an umbrella. You never know when you’ll need these items in the summer and you’ll be glad you have them!

 

We hope everyone has a safe and happy Memorial Day Weekend! Cheers to a great summer ahead.

15 Easter Egg Fillers That Aren’t Candy!

Easter is quickly approaching! If you’re planning to host an egg hunt this year you’re in the right place. We’ve put together a list of some great alternatives to candy for egg fillers. Don’t worry about jelly beans or chocolate candies melting inside of eggs at your Easter hunt!

1 – Coins

2 – Keychains

3 – Temporary tattoos

4 – Bouncy balls

5 – Stickers

6 – Mini glow sticks

7 – Friendship bracelets

8 – Balloons

9 – Sponge capsules

10 – Toy cars

11 – Rings

12 – Mini puzzles

13 – Jacks

14 – Mini pens/pencils

15 – Finger puppets

 

We hope everyone has a happy Easter!

8 Tips For Stocking Your Kitchen After Move-In

You have the keys, the movers are on their way and you don’t know where to start! How about the kitchen? The kitchen is one of the first places you should start when unpacking because it’s typically a central location of the home and let’s face it….your family is going to be hungry soon! Here are some great tips for stocking and unpacking the kitchen so you have what you need and it’s easily accessible.

1 – Grocery delivery services are a great option for that first move-in day. You can purchase the essentials and have someone else help with the shopping while you unpack the dishes and flatware.

2 – Speaking of essentials, don’t forget them! Think about oils, cooking sprays, salt, pepper, dry herbs and other condiments. Those are a staple in every kitchen.

3 – Try buying in bulk right away. Get plenty of dry goods for the pantry (think pastas, rice and canned good) and snacks for the kids.

4 – It’s not just about the food. Don’t forget to stock the sink area with soaps, cleaning supplies and sponges.

5 – Frozen vegetables, side dishes and snacks are a great way to start stocking the freezer. Have friends who want to cook for you? Say yes and stock some meals in your freezer for later in the week when you’re busy unpacking.

6 – Choose a spot for pots & pans that makes sense. Having cookware unpacked right away is important when dinner time rolls around.

7 – Paper goods aren’t a bad idea for the first couple of days. Have paper plates and napkins on hand to pull out while you decide on the perfect place to store your dishes in your new kitchen.

8 – Don’t be afraid to order takeout on your first night. You’ve had a long day and our leasing staff will be happy to give you recommendations on the best local places for dinner!

8 At Home Valentine Activities for the Whole Family

Sometimes staying in is just as fun as going out! If you’ve decided to stay in this year, here are 5 at home Valentine date ideas to try with the whole family.

 

1 – Movie Marathon. Everybody gets to choose their favorite movie (bonus if it is a love story). Spend the day watching the movies and eating fun, Valentine snacks together.

2 – Cooking Dinner Together. There are many at-home meal delivery services these days. Try ordering dinner for the family and sharing the task of preparing the meal.

3 – Decorating Treats. Whether its cupcakes or cookies, the whole family will have fun decorating some festive desserts together.

4 – Making Homemade Valentines. There is nothing better than a homemade card. Grab the art supplies and put your creative hats on to make valentines for each other.

5 – Play Valentine Bingo. You can download a fun version of Valentine bingo here. Instead of using the typical bingo markers, use conversation hearts to give it a fun, Valentine touch.

6 – Make a Valentine Playlist. Add everyone’s favorite love songs and play it all day on Valentine’s Day!

7 – Wear Matching Festive, Pajamas. Many stores are offering festive, Valentine pajamas for the whole family. Get warm, and cozy together in matching pjs this year.

8 – Drink Valentine Hot Chocolate. Pickup some cocoa bombs at the store or make yours festive by adding whipped cream and sprinkles.

 

However you choose to spend Valentine’s Day this year we hope you have a wonderful time together!

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.

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.

 

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.