CURRENT KITCHEN DESIGN TRENDS 2021 is well on its way, and a few kitchen trends have emerged as frontrunners. First up – light coloured countertops. While the beginning of 2020 saw darker countertops trending, a growing desire for a softer, uplifting vibe in the home means white, beige and grey countertops are popping up everywhere. Next – faucets. And more specifically, touchless faucets. Turn the water on with a wave of your hand to avoid spreading germs – and to avoid leaving those annoying fingerprints all over your faucet. Last up – slim appliances. Great for smaller homes, condos and people who’ve recently downsized, a variety of brands have released appliances that take up much less space. For example, while an average-sized refrigerator is 30-36 inches wide, Fisher & Paykel’s new thin fridge is only 24 inches. And it looks really beautiful too!
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DECLUTTER YOUR HOUSE WITH THESE 30 MINUTE PROJECTS Decluttering is one of the most important things a homeowner needs to do when prepping for a sale. Of course, it’s also one of the most difficult. Decluttering – especially if you’ve lived in your home for a long time – can feel very overwhelming. But thinking of the project as a bunch of small tasks instead of one big job helps it to feel much more manageable. Here are six 30-minute decluttering projects that will get your home sale-ready in no time. • Edit your books. If you’re a booklover, there’s a chance you have amassed quite the collection. Edit that collection and pass some of your books on for others to enjoy. Consider donating some to your local library. Just think about all the people who’ll get to read them! • Clear the kitchen counters. Countertops are notorious for collecting all kinds of odds and ends. Challenge yourself to clear them off almost completely, leaving out only a few of your most-used small appliances. • Go through your bedside table. If your nightstand has a drawer, it’s likely full with papers and other assorted things. Go through it and toss, recycle or donate anything you no longer want or need. Then neatly stack the rest. • Downsize your wardrobe. Almost everyone has a few pieces in their wardrobe that they no longer wear. And depending on the size of your clothing collection – you may have a lot more than a few. If you haven’t worn something in a year, it’s likely time to say goodbye. • Simplify your linen closet. How many extra towels, sheets, blankets and pillows do you actually need? Probably not as many as you have. Much like with your clothing, if you don’t regularly use your linens, you likely don’t need them anymore. • Get rid of baby clothes – at least some of them. It can be hard to give away the clothes your children wore during the first few months of their lives. But holding on to too many sweet outfits really doesn’t make sense. Pick one or two and donate the rest. AWESOME APRIL FACTS April can be pretty awesome as the winter gives way to spring flowers and showers. Here are four lesser-known facts about the month April! • April is named after the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite. • In the Roman calendar, the fourth month April is spelled Aprilis, meaning "to open.” • The birthstone for people born in April is the diamond, one of the hardest substances on earth. Diamonds are said to bring all kinds of benefits to their owners, supposedly leading the wearer to experience better relationships and an increase in inner strength. • The Elizabethan playwright William Shakespeare was born on April 23, 1564, and died on or about his April birthday at the age of 52 in England in 1616.
LOW-CARB ZUCCHINI FRITTER Courtesy of www.ehow.com INGREDIENTS: 3 medium zucchini 2 large eggs 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon dried parsley 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more for sweating zucchini 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons coconut flour 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
DIRECTIONS: 1. Wash and dice the zucchini. Add to a food processor. Pulse until shredded, scraping down the sides as needed. 2. Transfer the zucchini to a strainer or colander, then place in a large bowl. Lightly salt the zucchini and let sit (or "sweat") for 20 minutes, tossing occasionally. The salt will help draw the excess moisture out of the zucchini. 3. Wrap the zucchini in a cloth. Firmly squeeze the zucchini to remove moisture, repeating as needed. 4. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs. Combine the shredded zucchini, eggs, garlic, spices, coconut flour and Parmesan cheese in a large bowl. Stir well. If the mixture is watery, add coconut flour, one tablespoon at a time. 5. Warm oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Form 1/4 cup scoops of zucchini mixture into small patties. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining mixture, add more oil as necessary. 6. Serve warm and with sour cream, scallions and more parsley. Or enjoy all on their own!
MUST-HAVE HOME FEATURES The experts at HGTV have released a list of must-have features for all home renovation projects. And while the term “must-have” should be taken with a grain of salt, there’s a good reason these features are being touted – they’re a perfect balance of pretty and practical. Take the office-nook for example. HGTV calls a work-from-home space “essential,” but not everyone has an extra bedroom that can act as an office. Instead, a small nook underneath the stairs or in the corner of your kitchen or bedroom can provide you with everything a home office needs – in a fraction of the space. Another highly recommended feature is a good-sized, well-organized pantry. Keep in mind that “good-sized” is a relative term. If you live in a smaller home or condo, it may be a thin slice of cupboard or a small closet. It’s what you do within the space that’s important. Think multiple shelves, bins, baskets – and labels if you want to take your pantry organization one step further. Heading outdoors, HGTV experts are saying that a space to dine and hang out beyond your four walls is vital. Even if all you have is a small balcony, you can turn it into an oasis with comfortable seating, mood lighting for the evenings, and plenty of potted plants. Lastly, the trend towards living a more eco-conscious lifestyle continues to grow. And there are so many ways you can green your home. From replacing inefficient windows to investing in solar panels – even installing a DIY rain-catcher can make a difference. Keep in mind though, that the most important must-have feature in your home is that it reflects you and your family’s likes and needs.
HOW TO MAKE GARDEN POTS OUT OF NEWSPAPER An easy, thrifty and eco-friendly way to start your seeds indoors. All you’ll need is some newspaper, a pair of scissors and a clean tin can. Step 1: Take a full newspaper sheet and fold in half, then cut along the crease. Each piece makes one pot. Step 2: Fold the half pieces in half again and then fold an inch-wide lip on the open side. Step 3: Roll the newspaper around the can, leaving two inches overhang on the bottom. Fold over these two inches to make the bottom of the pot. Step 4: Slide the can out while holding the bottom of the newspaper pot and fold the lip over again inside the pot to secure the folds. Step 5: Once your seedlings are ready to be moved outside, the newspaper pots can be placed directly into the dirt!
FUNNY JOKES THAT ARE EASY TO REMEMBER
What’s the best thing about Switzerland? I don’t know, but the flag is a big plus.
Why do we tell actors to “break a leg?” Because every play has a cast.
Did you hear about the mathematician who’s afraid of negative numbers? He’ll stop at nothing to avoid them.
Hear about the new restaurant called Karma? There’s no menu: You get what you deserve.
I invented a new word! Plagiarism!
5 TIPS ON READYING YOUR GARDEN FOR SPRING Spring is such an exciting time for gardeners. Whether you’re a seasoned greenthumb or you’re just starting out, these five simple tips will set you on the right path. A path that leads you to a beautiful, bountiful garden! • Tidy up. Winter can leave behind a bit of a mess. Clean up any dead leaves, broken branches, or wilted annuals. Trim your perennials – if needed, as well as your shrubs and trees. • Get your tools ready. Get out your spades, shears, shovels and any other handy tools you have and give them a wash with soap and water. You’ll be grateful to have nice, clean tools ready at hand when it’s time to plant and maintain. • Prep your soil. Use a pitchfork or shovel to break up your soil and turn it over. Then add fresh compost in and mix well. If you don’t have your own compost pile store-bought works too. Just make sure to add the compost a couple weeks before planting so it has time to mix with the existing soil. • Start planning. The best way to plan is with a piece of paper and pencil. Draw an outline of your garden and flowerbeds and start marking where your existing perennials already are and where you’d like new perennials and annuals to go. For inspiration, browse sites like Pinterest and Houzz and visit your local greenhouses to talk to the experts that work there. • Maintain and enjoy. Taking care of a garden is an ongoing job, but that’s the fun of it! Keep on top of your weeding, but don’t spend all your time doing it. Pull just a few every day and spend more time delighting in the wonders of spring.
Use the numbers 1-9 to fill in the numbers exactly once in every row, column, and 3x3 region below.