The kitchen is the most visited and used place in the home after the bedroom, one where we love to eat and mingle with others. Many have meals and drinks there alone or in company, and for more enjoyable dining it’s good to have a well-equipped and orderly kitchen.

Useful and reliable appliances are necessary for preparing and serving great food at home. Most consumers buy a range and maybe a cooktop, a refrigerator and freezer, a dishwasher, and perhaps a microwave for the convenience. But there’s more to food preparation and service than these basic tools, and one of the more useful is the blender.

Basic unit of mix: The blender

A blender is a common appliance which buyers look to buy after kitchen basics like a range or refrigerator or microwave oven. These units are good for mixing foodstuffs and drinks, and most general-use models are good at traditional tasks like blending fruit smoothies and pureeing and whipping ingredient. If you use your blender infrequently, there are highly-rated budget models which do much of that and can also crush ice. The higher-end types tend to be more consistent at blending difficult stuff like pesto and salsa.

Blender Types

  • Heavy-duty
  • General-use
  • Single-serve
  • Handheld

Heavy-duty blenders have the power to grind flour, blend hot ingredients and heat cold ones, and puree very smooth mixes. Some can juice hard-to-pulverize leafy vegetables such as kale. The best ones last for years and are easy to use and clean.

An inexpensive, general-use blender with a few settings is good for most needs. But the pricier ones can service a wider variety of blending, mixing, and chopping tasks. For serious and frequent food preparation such as kneading flours or nut butters, a heavy-duty model would make more sense.

That said, there’s no need to invest in a heavy-duty model if you’re only looking to do basic smoothies and shakes. In that case an inexpensive single-serve blender would be great as they’re designed for quickly whipping up and consuming smoothies and shakes. Many come with packable serving cups, others feature several. Some are almost full-sized units, however a full-size, general-use blender is usually better at a bigger variety of tasks. (more…)

A lot of people in this world are suffering from allergies and it is a reality that they can start at any age. The most common comes from respiratory allergies because we cannot choose the air we breathe most of the time. The dust, smoke, dander from animals, and pollen will enter our system that will cause us to sneeze continuously, have runny nose, and eyes that will start to water. When your airway gets narrow and becomes inflamed, sever reactions occur. When there is an overproduction of mucus secretions, it will lead to congestion which can lead to bacterial infections. Allergic reactions differ and whatever it is that you have, you can choose from the best essential oils that are being sold today.

Lavender essential oil

This one is a natural antihistamine that possesses a lot of properties that battle anti-inflammatory for treating allergic reactions. It is great for rashes and headaches that will not only give you ease but to calm and relax you as well. Lavender also has a very nice scent. If you feel that fever is about to set in, rub a few drops between your palms and hold it close to your nostrils. You can carry around a container with cotton balls that were dipped in lavender oil when your allergy is very active.

Peppermint essential oil

People are not strangers to the cool and fresh smell of peppermint. Mentha piperita is where the essential oil was derived from because it is a cross between spearmint, water, and mint which has been for a long time, but only to aid in digestion. Aside from this, peppermint also has anti-inflammatory and analgesic components that are great for allergies and painful conditions because of them. When your allergy has turned into bronchitis or sinusitis, this is the essential oil you need. The main component in peppermint which is menthol helps in loosening up the thick mucus that got accumulated in the airway making it easy for you to expel the phlegm. Secondary infections will not happen because the respiratory tract is cleared.

Lemon essential oil

This is another essential oil that is also a natural antihistamine that helps in relieving mucus and cools down inflammation which is caused by an allergic reaction. To get the most out of lemon essential oil, it should be combined with peppermint and lavender oil. This essential oil has an indirect effect because it prompts the body which increases blood circulation and then clears the respiratory tract and sinuses. It works with the two essential oils to keep congestion from happening which is why asthmatics love essential oils.

Eucalyptus essential oil

This is an essential oil with a very strong smell and action because you can rely on its effect of making respiratory secretions flow continuously. This is especially effective for severe headache and sinus congestion that come from allergy attacks that were not treated before. Eucalyptus oil gives you instant relief which has been extracted from the stem and leaves that come from leaves of several species of Eucalyptus. You should not use this oil topically or internally when the strength is full. You can put a few drops in an aromatherapy diffuser or steam inhaler so that your nostrils and sinuses open up. In in case you are in a closed area while inhaling steam, to avoid irritating your eyes, hold a wet towel to your eyes. It is good to dilute it with coconut oil or other carrier oils first and then test it in a small area of your body before rubbing it to your chest or forehead. When you are using eucalyptus oil, drink a lot of warm water because the flow of mucus can later dry the airways. (more…)

A Good Can Opener for Great Kitchens

Kitchens are likely the most visited and used place other than the bedroom, where we usually eat meals and drinks alone or in company with others. For enjoyable home dining a well-equipped and laid-out kitchen is a necessity.

Good appliances are great for preparing and serving drinks and food. Most consumers would buy a range or stovetop and maybe a wall oven, a refrigerator and freezer, a dishwasher, and also a convenient microwave. We look at one of the more useful kitchen accessories, the Can Opener.

Can opener Types

  • Handheld top-cut
  • Handheld side-cut
  • Electric top-cut
  • Electric side-cut
  • Cordless electric

A can opener is a common appliance which many consider a basic like cookware. They come in top cut or side cut types, and each has pros and cons. Side-cutters produce smooth edges by cutting along the lid’s sides, lowering the risk of getting wounded from protruding sharp edges. These are popular with parents as the smooth edges produced are safer for small children. The side-cutting blades rarely touch the food and thus hardly need washing, so the process is more sanitary and the mechanism is less likely to rust than that of top-cut models.

However, it can be hard to tell if the side-cut has gone all around the can already. If this is done more than once, one runs the risk of producing sharp slivers which go into food or else cut fingers. With smooth-edged openers, durability can be suspect, and getting lids off can be a challenge sometimes. Many come with small pliers to help grab and pull the lid off.

Traditional top-cut models work well and seemingly last longer. They also tend to work more reliably due to more robust blade designs, and many come with magnets to hold the lid once cut. Most highly-rated handheld can openers are top-cutters, but there are a few good electric side-cut models.

Electric can openers automate the process with a push of a lever or button. They are especially helpful for those weak hands or limited movement, and many conveniently stop once the lid is off. Electrics are faster at opening cans than manual ones but are usually more expensive, typically double the price of manual models. They also take up some counter space and storage, and not all electric openers can handle the tallest cans. Like manual openers, electrics come in top-cut and side-cut versions, but top-cutters are still more common.

Cordless can openers have their niche, they operate like countertop electric models but readily stow in a drawer afterwards as most are only a little bigger than manual models. They do tend to get stuck in operation and can be a bit slower, so be wary.

Good can opener features

  • Stainless blades
  • Capable and heft size
  • Easy-to-clean mechanisms
  • Effortless manual turns
  • Magnetic top-cut lid holders


Purchasing a new home is almost everyone’s dream. And, when you are able to get new home of your home, you must remember that it requires you to pay careful attention in certain important things. This article would list some of such important things to do when you are moving to your new home.
moving to new home

  1. Is Your New Home Free From Pests?

I would say that this is the most important thing must look into. In order to make your new home free from pests, you can either make use of a bug bomb or call the exterminator. You may think that your new home is free from pests by mere looking. I would say that you must do this thing mandatorily even if you don’t see the bugs. This is because; pests are more likely to habitat inside the unused homes and you would find it difficult to fight them after your things arrived.

  1. Have You Changed Your Address?

This is another important thing you must do when you are moving to your new home. For this, you may just visit the post office near your old home and enquire them on what to be done. In addition to changing your address at the post office, you may have to inform your creditors about your address change. Furthermore, you need to change addresses for the magazines which you have subscribed for not missing any issue.

  1. Have You Changed the Locks?

This may sound surprising to you. But, this is really important! As soon as you got your home as your own, you must call a locksmith and install new locks for the exterior doors. This is because; there are chances that any of the following people would have the keys for your home which is dangerous: (more…)


Of all the spots in a kitchen, the sink sees the most action. A farmhouse-style sink (as opposed to a divided one) can accommodate a big roasting pan plus voluminous bunches of kale, or all your dirty dishes at the same time. Kohler’s stainless steel update on the single-bowl farmhouse sink blends traditional design and modern materials. for stores; $1,249


It’s back. Here’s why: Linoleum is hardy (Armstrong “Colorette” is commercial-grade), comes in good colors (we like Deep End), and is cheap.

Available at Linoleum City, 323-469-0063; $4 per square foot


You’re a committed cook who gets your hands dirty: When mixing a marinade or kneading dough, just tap this touch pad with an elbow or knee to turn on the faucet.

“Wi-Touch”; for stores; $550


A radio is a time-honored kitchen companion: Get one that’s simple to use and iPod-friendly, with classic design and great sound, like the PAL by Tivoli Audio. It’s weather-resistant, so you can even take it outside.; $220


Architectural salvagelike a used butcher table or pastry tablebrings hand-hewn charm, and is made for roughing up.

Salvage worktables; for more information; $850 to $3,500


Changing over to green cleaning products gives results you’ll appreciate for their food-inspired aromas and use of plant-based ingredients.

Grapefruit and green tea dishwashing liquid and lavender and aloe vera hand soap;; $3 for 16 ounces/$5 for 8.4 ounces (more…)

Textile industry officials generally approve of Fieldcrest Cannon’s plan to acquire Sure Fit, a slipcover firm that has been looking for financial backing to expand since 1992. The 80-year old Sure Fit will benefit from the influx of cash Fieldcrest plans to use to boost the business, but some industry observers are concerned that Sure Fit will lose some of its flexibility as mill officials take over for entrepreneurs.

There is a difference of opinion among executives in the table linens field when it comes to pinpointing the year’s leading design trends.

Any Design That Would Fit a Placemat

“It was the year of the damask,” says David Alden, president of Foreston Trends.

“It was the year of the sunflower,” contends David Beyda, vice president of sales for Town & Country Linen.

“It was a good year for fruit designs,” maintains Robert Montgomery, vice president of marketing for John Matouk & Co.

It seems all three of them are right. According to most industry executives, 1994 was the year for just about any design that would fit a placemat. The year’s top-selling patterns, based on interviews with 19 of the leading table linen and placemat vendors, were as varied as the crowd at a Rolling Stones concert.

If it was the year of damask, only Foreston Trends (Traditions) and Avon Home Fashions (Prima Vera Damask) were informed. Meanwhile, Town & Country (Sunny) was the only vendor to name Van Gogh’s favorite flower as its top-selling design motif.

Nevertheless, some of the industry’s staples remained the same. Harvest colors appeared in several top-selling patterns. And more table linens were sold at retail during the fall selling season due to consumers’ drive to pump up their Thanksgiving and ensuing holiday tables.

Companies that cited the harvest look for top-selling design included Bardwil (Windswept), Tobin (Golden Harvest), Homemaker Industries (Country Meadow) and John Matouk (Chateau Vineyards).

To do their best, it seems, patterns should not be linked to a specific holiday. Donald Tobin, president of Tobin Home Fashions, explains, “It’s best to have a design that doesn’t lock you into a holiday.”

Montgomery of John Matouk, cites Chateau Vineyards as a good example. “You wouldn’t look at it and say, ‘Oh, that’s Thanksgiving.’ Yet, it’s perfect for it,” he says.

Others took different roads. Park B. Smith continued its push for all-natural looks with its Eco-Ordinates line, which produced a top-selling table linens set. Others simply tried to complement dinnerware patterns. Dakotah’s Plaza was designed to work with a variety of stoneware patterns, as was Kemp & Beatley’s Hopscotch pattern from Ex-Cell Home Fashions.

This is a category where a pattern can last longer than George Foreman. Keeco’s Lancaster Crochet and Foreston Trend’s Tuxedo have been top sellers for nearly a decade.

If the table linens and placemats stopped short of breaking new design ground this year, several vendors say, it is because these products do not offer the same opportunity for margins as other home textiles merchandise. “It’s really price-sensitive,” one executive notes. “There’s not a lot of creativity beyond the basics.”

Following is a list of the 1994 top-selling table linens sets. (more…)