5 uncomplicated ways to make your home safer

The new year: the ideal time to take a look at your home security. It feels good to start in 2021, knowing that our homes and families are safe and secure.

The safety of your home might not be something that comes to mind straight away when making resolutions. Many of us are still in the clutches of winter, with dark and cold nights looming. While it’s a perfect time to make the most of hot drinks and books in front of roaring fires, no-one wants that tarnished with the stress of old locks and security systems. 

Image via Max Pixels: CC0 License

Here are some simple ways to update your home security to feel comfortable in your home through winter, and the new year ahead. 

1. Secure Doors And Windows

Your front door is the most popular way for unwanted visitors to enter. So even though making sure your front door is secure seems almost too simple, it’s the most essential thing on this list. 

Thankfully, it won’t take much effort for you to ensure the frame is strong and the locks are working. You can consider adding in a deadbolt for extra security, or a video doorbell, so you know who’s wanting to enter. If you’re relocating into a new home, it’s a great time to change the locks. That way you know the locks you put in are top of the line. 

Don’t forget your windows! The latches on windows aren’t always the most secure – if the windows are old, they’ll be even more flimsy. You can ramp up window security pretty easy with some new latches. 

Image by: PhotoMIX Company via Pexels

2. Light It Up

Suppose someone’s sneaking onto your property when they shouldn’t be. In that case, they aren’t going to appreciate being in the spotlight when your outdoor floodlights activate. This makes ample outdoor lighting another straightforward way to make your house safer by making it less appealing to burglars. 

Make sure to have lighting cover front and back yards and entry points like the front door and garage. Solar lights are brilliant as they provide just as much coverage while saving you some pennies. If you’re going for something more high tech or mains connected, make sure to hire an experienced electrician. It pays to get them installed properly – plus, expert electricians can give great advice when it comes to choosing the nest product for your needs. 

3. Top Notch Security

Whether your home is new or old, it’ll most likely already have some sort of security system in place. It’s worth taking the opportunity to see if it really gives your home enough protection. There are plenty on options out there when it comes to home security systems. The sheer variety of them means you can choose something that will meet your needs, and tech level, exactly. 

Consider whether you want to install yourself. If you’d prefer a professional installation, it can change what system’s right for you. Most importantly, choose something you’re truly comfortable with. You’ll be the one using it after all!

Image by: Pixabay via Pexels

4. Get A Safe

Again, this seems pretty simple! But that’s exactly what this list is about – straight forward, easy options for you to feel safer at home. If the worst happens and someone unwanted manages to get inside your home, having a safe will mean those things most valuable to you are protected.

Like all of these suggestions – choose something that fits your life. Think about what’s important to you and the space you’ll need to protect it. Whatever option you go for, there are 3 things you’ll want to look for. Whether the safe is fireproof, waterproof and heavy enough that it can’t just be picked up and walked away with! 

5. Be Concious 

Some of these suggestions might be a little on the expensive side. So if you’re strapped for cash, the best thing you can do is be conscious of your home and surroundings. Knowing every little nook of your home and property leaves you in a better place to protect it. 

Check the perimeter in the evenings, check windows and doors are locked before leaving and know every inch of your property. Most importantly, though, get to know your neighbours! Even if your neighbours aren’t close, they are an invaluable tool for looking out for your home when you’re not around. Plus, it helps build a real sense of community and belonging, which is wonderful to encourage!

Image by: Kelly Lacy via Pexels

Hopefully, you’ve been empowered to make positive home safety decisions. There’s a little something for everyone, and you can take out as much or as little from it as needed. Here’s to a bright, healthy and safe new year. 

** This was a contributed post.

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6 budget-friendly renovation ideas to spruce up your home interior

Having a luxurious, sophisticated home can be challenging, especially if you have a limited budget. Luckily, there are budget-friendly ways to achieve a superb look and feel for your abode.

When planning for the redesign of your home interior, consider design secrets from experts that can make your residence look stunning without breaking the bank. From getting a fresh coat of interior decorative paint to installing the latest type of flooring and window treatments, these are some affordable solutions you should know and seriously consider.

1. Add pillows

Pillows serve two primary purposes – they can add elegance and a cozy feeling to a room and provide added comfort when you use your sofa, chair or bed.

When picking out pillows, consider ones in a bigger size so you can sit and rest on them whenever you want to. Also, lavish pillow inserts filled with down are considered the best options.

2. Use crown molding

Details matter in making your home appear custom-made and high-end, and crown molding can help you achieve it. It helps bring together the walls and ceilings to attain an elegant look. This finishing touch can make a room look finished and expensive.

Luckily, crown molding is affordable and available in different sizes. But for a greater impact, consider crown molding with wider trims. Install it on high baseboards, chair rails, ceiling medallions, columns, and ceiling beams.

3. Choose interior decorative finishes

Adding or changing the paint color can immediately make your home look refreshed and good as new. And for this task, it’s best to use decorative paint finishes.

Using decorative paints has become popular over the years because of the many benefits it provides. These include:

  • Low volatile organic chemical content
  • Ability to replicate the natural look of surfaces like stone, wood, and marble
  • Can add texture and dimension to a flat surface
  • May be used to fix wall irregularities like patching holes and levelling depressions

Compared to home wallpaper, decorative finishes don’t peel off. The surface is washable, and it doesn’t have any seam lines. More importantly, the walls can breathe, so moisture won’t get trapped beneath it.

Interior painting involves several important considerations, including selecting the most suitable type of finish and color for your home. If you find it hard to cherry-pick, reputable paint companies in Dubai and around the world can help you make the right color selection.

4. Light each room adequately

Lighting makes a huge difference to home interiors. It does not just brighten up a room but can also affect your emotions. It can make you feel productive and relaxed and even lift your spirits.

It is ideal for every room to have a mix of lighting fixtures: task, accent, and overhead lights.

For instance, consider using downlights to gently wash the curtains and walls with warm brightness in your living room. Use accent lights to highlight art and position table lamps close to seating to add another layer of lighting.

As for your kitchen, bright lights are highly recommended. Install recessed lights beside the edge of the ceiling and hang overhead pendant lights over your kitchen island. Place LED light strips on the bottom area of your upper cabinets to create a well-lit counter space for food preparation.

In your bedroom, use a bedside light with a movable shade and a dimmer. This offers more flexibility should you want to redirect the light elsewhere.

Make sure you consider the orientation of every room. Install more lighting fixtures if a room does not receive direct sunlight. But don’t overdo it because this can just be a waste of your time and money. To save energy, use LED bulbs.

5. Use the right window treatments

Window treatments add elegance to your property, on top of some much-needed privacy. For curtains or drapes, stick with elegant materials like cotton, linen, and silk.

But if you don’t want draperies, consider wooden blinds or woven bamboo shades. The goal here is to dress your windows because window treatments can make your home appear well-designed and elegant.

6. Accessorize

Most homeowners think that accessorizing their property is an expensive venture, but there are ways to do it while staying within your budget.

For instance, think gold! 

Featuring gold in your home interior helps create a feeling of elegance and richness. You can accessorize with gold mirrors, gold picture frames, or gold-legged tables. However, make sure not to put too much gold-toned materials in one place as you’ll run the risk of having a home interior that looks overdone.

Indeed, there are plenty of affordable and effective ways to elevate your home’s appeal and comfort.

So, if you’re planning to redo or refresh your home interior to make it look more elegant, cozy or welcoming (or all three), make sure you implement the above tips. 

Author Bio:

Ralph El Eid is the Business Development Manager at COLORTEK – Wall & Floor Fashion. EQUIPAINT is the franchise owner of COLORTEK in Dubai (U.A.E.) and Doha (Qatar); an international paints manufacturer specializing in the widest range of decorative paints and seamless concrete & resin flooring, with a unique showroom concept, and thus an ideal destination for homeowners, consultants, architects, interior designers and paint applicators.

acreage renovation: remy’s own room


A few weeks ago, I had mentioned that Remy and Wilder now have their own rooms.

Since January 2020, we have made the unfinished guest room into a finished guest room and now into Remy’s own room. These are the changes that we made in order to do so.

We removed the armoire, rugs, plant, and pictures from the wall. In the armoire’s place we put her tent and twinkle lights from Grandma. The throw pillows are from Amazon. (I still need to buy her an alphabet rug for the tent.)

In the previous plant’s corner now sits her desk which has a daily rotation of toys- from barns to Barbies.

I wanted the wall hangings to match and to be a lighter oak colour, so where did I go? To the dollar store, of course! I do need to broaden my search one of these days, but I just love a good deal! ;-)))

Remy has always had a high shelf near the door in her bedrooms. I am not sure why, but it has sort of become her “thing.” I have always put meaningful items on this shelf. This room was no different. The pictures are from last year’s trip to British Columbia, the dolls she had since she was a baby, and the “be you” sign was one that I bought a few ago. As always, we bought a pine shelf and brackets from Home Depot.

I also hung her little collection of shells from BC. She put her few Calico Critters inside and Ty Beanie Babies on top.

Honestly, that was pretty much it! We kept the antique bed and dresser in the room because she liked how big they were. We also switched out the rugs, bringing back the one that was originally in her bedroom. I don’t think that it really cost us anything to change it from a guest room to a little girl’s room. Remy is so much happier having a place of her own, and we are happy for her.

Emory

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acreage renovation: wilder’s own room

This post could also be titled “turning a girl’s bedroom into a shared room and back into a boy’s room.” All within 6 months. Whew.

It all began here, when we made-over Remy’s room. We loved the results and they loved sharing a bedroom for the first time. Then just before the coronavirus hit, they both became extremely ill with pneumonia, bronchitis, ear infections, fevers, the flu, allergic reactions to medicine, and more. From January until March, it was two solid months of them being just so incredibly sick. As a result, Remy slept in our bed with me, and Wilder slept in their room with Geoff. We wanted to separate them at night so that they would stop passing their germs back and forth.

That was during the beginning stage of their room sharing. It was then that I was starting to doubt our decision to join their bedrooms. I thought, will I have to separate them each time they catch a cold or get sick? Then came COVID.

Aside from preschool and gymnastics ending, having to stay home 24/7 was not a big change for us. I already stay and work part-time from home. Having a four- and one-year-old meant that they also pretty much stayed home all of the time. Luckily, the weather was becoming nicer so we were able to spend more time outdoors. When we weren’t, we were playing inside. That’s when their fighting began.

Remy is still getting used to having to share her toys as Wilder is only now becoming interested in them. They are so close, loving, and gentle with one another, until it comes to toy-sharing. She was often playing in their room with her toys, and he would come in and grab them. Then she would get mad, tell him to leave, and close the door so he couldn’t get in. He would stand outside the door and bang on it. Because we couldn’t leave the house, it was driving Geoff and I insane. There were only so many times that we could break up the fights over toys, explaining to her that it is nice to share and that he has to be gentler with objects. Finally, and having a newly renovated guest bedroom, we decided to temporarily move her toys in there. That way, she could play in peace in a room by herself, and he could do the same in his.

It worked. They went back to not fighting at all, and our sanity was once again restored. Then Remy asked if she could sleep in the “big bed” at night. We agreed. One night turned into two, then three. Everything was going so smoothly that we quickly decided to make it a permanent move. The new guest bedroom would become her room, and their shared bedroom would become Wilder’s own room. We have not looked back since.

This is what Wilder’s bedroom now looks like. We did not have to modify much in order to turn it into a little boy’s room. We changed the rug, I purchased different curtains, and switched out the toys.

I also moved the crib from one wall to the other and hung his photos above the crib. I did end up buying a “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” sign, wood picture frames, and a shelf that I saw at the dollar store (of all places). The former is one of his favourite songs.

I put the little IKEA chair that was in the basement in his room, hung his “Wanted” poster that we got in BC, and made him a reading nook in the corner. He loves to read. The faux leather pillow I purchased here.

Finally, we bought him a pine shelf to replace the barn wood shelf that was originally in the room. It all suits him so well!

This parenting thing, you learn as you go along. Right?

Emory

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acreage renovation: new countertops

Before.

After.

So begins our kitchen renovation …

which is on hold until summer is over and we are finished tackling the outdoor projects. 😂 However, it’s a start (and a beautiful one at that)!

Emory

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to three (two on earth and one in heaven). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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