Love is in the air and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! What are you going to do for your sweetie this year? Whether you want to get them something special or do something special, there’s lots of options. We’re here to help make your day exceptional.
Avoid The Same Old Same Old
Do you tend to get your special someone the same thing each and every year? Maybe some roses and a box of chocolates? This is the year to break that trend and avoid the ordinary!! Check out these great gift ideas that are better than flowers and candy. It’s guaranteed to surprise the one you love:
This personalized gift is a great way to look back on your relationship. From the day you met, first date, got married, and the birth of your children.
What better way to capture each and every moment as they happen? You can treasure those moments forever. Stick them on your fridge, in a photo album or scrapbook.
Bring the spa to her! With several different scent options, you can treat your love from the comfort of their own home.
Switch up the usual with this date night bucket list. Lots of creative date night ideas, both fun and intellectual. Avoid the dreaded “What do you want to do tonight?” question.
Remember your special day in this unique way. Pick the best line from your vows and put them on display.
Satisfy their sweet tooth with a twist. So gorgeous they’ll never want to eat it… if they can resist.
You Know Them Best
When it comes right down to it, you know your love the best. This is an excuse to treat them… maybe spoil them with a spa day. Keep them grilling with a BBQ Set. Make them laugh with a silly mug. Keep them cozy with a new blanket & pillow or PJ set. Get them a little buzzed with their favorite wine. Keep things smelling fresh with a candle. Help them feel pretty with personalized jewelry. Even if it’s the classic flowers & chocolates, get them what they want.
A Night on The Town
Want to take your sweetie out on the town? Beautiful Coeur d’Alene and the surrounding area is never short on events, even for the day of love. And also some great date night ideas you could do on Valentine’s Day or any other.
Bourbon & Chocolate Paring – On February 14th at The Bee’s Knees from 4-11:30pm
Wine & Chocolate Pairing – On February 14th at The Culinary Stone from 4:30-6pm
Valentine’s Dinner For Two – On February 12th – 16th at The Coeur d’Alene Casino
Valentine’s Day Cruises – On February 14th or 15th boarding at The Boardwalk Marina, Times Vary
Sock Hop 1950’s Dance – On February 14th at Lake City Center from 6-9pm
Sweethearts Ball – On February 14th at The Best Western from 5pm-12am
Mardis Gras Murder – On Feb. 14th & 15th, 21st & 22nd at The Cd’A Cellars at 6:30pm
Ice Skating at River Front Park in Spokane – Make an entire night of it and have dinner at an elegant restaurant downtown, catch a movie, go ice skating, and then stay at a nice hotel.
Pinot’s Palette Date Night – You paint half a picture on a canvas and your partner paints the other half, making one giant gorgeous picture. Don’t forget the drinks.
Ski/Snowboard Day – Enjoy the slopes at any one of the great resorts near us!
A getaway with the one you love is needed every now and then. And what better time than Valentine’s Day? Celebrate your love together and enjoy a small vacation. You’ll still be close to home, yet in a world of your own.
Located in gorgeous Sandpoint Idaho, this is a must stay. Visitors get to enjoy astounding views of the surrounding mountain ranges and beautifully constructed log cabins. Don’t forget the horseback riding, outdoor activities, and all the history that comes with it.
The Blackwell Hotel is located in Downtown Coeur d’Alene. It’s full of elegance, history, and many unique touches. First built in 1904, it still has the original artwork. A very romantic place, a must see!
Located on the North Shore of Coeur d’Alene Lake, it’s become a top place to stay for visitors. At the resort you will never be bored with accommodations like golfing, spa, pool, restaurants, nightlife and more! Check out their lake front rooms today.
This is a one of a kind experience! Dinner & a movie, then dessert & drinks after the credits roll. Don’t forget the gambling & luxury rooms to stay in. Everything you need in one place.
Located in Downtown Spokane, Historic Davenport Hotel is right in the center of everything. With gorgeous city views, a romantic design, a spa, and even jetted tubs and fireplaces in some rooms you’ll never want to leave! Great balance of modern amenities and a historic charm.
This little bed & breakfast is located just 10 minutes from downtown. Close but away from all the crows. Very peaceful and quite location which makes it perfect for a romantic getaway.
No matter how you choose to spend your Valentine’s Day, make it memorable and celebrate your love!!
We get asked that question frequently. Or if a property is already on the market, sellers often ask if they should take it off. There are arguments as well as pros and cons for both schools of thought. We’ll break down each side to help you make the decision on if you should list your home in the winter.
1. Less Competition
It’s as simple as supply and demand. If there are fewer homes to choose from, your home will get more activity and showings, in turn, more offers for more money. Additionally, when there are fewer options, buyers tend to be less picky.
2. Buyers Are Serious
Although there are typically more buyers in the spring and summer, the serious buyers continue looking in the winter. If a buyer is truly serious, it doesn’t matter the time of year. During the warmer months, people go to open houses just for fun, but in winter only the serious ones are out. And typically they have a pressing matter that is requiring them to find and close on a house quickly.
3. Online House Hunting Is Year Round
The internet has made house hunting from the warmth of your own home easier than ever. People are constantly looking at listings online. In fact, 93% of people use the internet in their home search and that’s how most begin. The only time they have to deal with the cold is to see the shortlist of their absolute favorites.
4. Agents Are Up To The Challenge & Motivated
Since the winter months are a bit slower, most real estate agents are also slow. If you choose to sell during the winter, your agent will be able to focus more on you. But, you want to be sure you get a good agent that’s up to the challenge. There are hurdles that need to be jumped when selling in winter and a good agent will know how to adapt to the current season and market the listings accordingly. They’ll know the current market in the area and be able to provide you with tips and suggestions.
5. More From Out Of Town Are Looking
During the holiday season, many family members come from out of town to visit. So, if they are considering relocating, they would look at homes when they’re in town. This often means they need to find a home fast and have a bit more financial flexibility. Additionally, people have more time off work and they take advantage of that by looking for their next home. Lastly, more people relocate for work in the first quarter of the year.
1. Curb Appeal Is Difficult
In the spring and summer months, it’s easier to show off the curb appeal of your home with flowers, landscaping, and daylight until 9pm. Winter poses a problem since everything is covered by snow, and typically not fresh snow. Homes listed in winter are often viewed with things looking drab and worn because everything is brown and gray. You could decorate for the holidays, which will make it more appealing. On the plus side, you won’t have to spend as much time meticulously working on your yard.
House hunting in winter can be a chore for the buyers. They’ll need to bundle up and endure the cold temperatures. Fresh snow can also be a traveling hazards for potential buyers, so they may choose to stay home for the day. Also, you’ll need to make sure your driveway and walkways aren’t slick or snow covered. Those who do come to look at your home can track in salt and possibility mud, which you will then need to take extra time to clean after each showing.
3. Buyers Have Limited Budgets
Near the end of the year, many people have their money tied up in other financial obligations such as buying holiday gifts, traveling, setting aside money to pay taxes, or making sure their own home and car are winter ready. With such a tight budget, more people may not be willing to invest in a new home.
4. Buyers Have The Negotiating Power
Most sellers will get multiple offers in spring and summer because there are more buyers. When there are less, some buyers may drive a hard bargain. They may even think that a seller is desperate for any offer and so they low ball them. And often times, the seller accepts because they are worried they won’t get another offer until spring.
If you have any additional questions or concerns about selling your home, in winter or otherwise, contact us! We’re here to help, know the market, and can list your home appropriately.
North Idaho is B-E-A-U-tiful and its known for its mountains, lakes and abundant beauty. Its also known for it’s snow! There is plenty to know about snow and here are some resources to tap into that will keep you informed and prepared.
In Coeur d’Alene the average amount of snow that falls is 42 inches, comparing that to the rest of the country with only 28 inches. Keeping in mind, the farther North you go, the more snow you will see. With Spirit Lake receiving approximately 52 inches a year and Sandpoint with 61 inches. December is typically the heaviest snowfall month with an average of 11.7 inches, and second heaviest is January with 10.4 inches.
But when?? You might hear horror stories of winters in North Idaho lasting half the year, and that’s not exactly wrong. Snow in our area can start as early as November. Unless you were here the record breaking year of 2019 when we received 1.1 inches of snow on September 29th, the most in September’s history. Before that, the last time the snow fell in September was in 1926 with 1 inch of snow. But, on average, you will typically see snow in November and it could last through April.
This is all just averages, there’s no telling exactly what the North Idaho winters will do! That means we need to be ready for everything.
The Coeur d’Alene Police Department offers FREE winter driving classes. They typically begin in October and go through early December. If you’re new to driving in the snow or would like a refresher, check on the specific dates when the time comes next year.
Knowing how to drive in the snow is just part of it, you want to be sure your vehicle is ready for the snow as well. Check out our blog North Winter Driving Preparation for detailed information.
Our home is another thing we need to prepare when winter comes. Our website is always a great resource for this. Check out our Fall & Winter Home Maintenance page to prepare for winter and our blog 6 Overlooked Winterizing Tasks.
Since North Idaho is used to getting so much snow, we are more than prepared when it comes! We have both the expertise and practice on our side! Check out the detailed information on Coeur d’Alene’s snow plan here. The City of Coeur d’Alene’s website also goes into detail on the Snow and Ice Control Operations and also has a map that shows you which roads are completed, getting worked on and getting worked on next. Check out the links below for snow information in your city:
Our blog post mention earlier, North Winter Driving Preparation, also has tips on how to drive in the snow. There are many other resources on the post, such as what to do in an emergency and a video which offers additional recommendations and visuals to help with winter driving.
Snow in North Idaho, although requires much work and preparation, is also fun! We have so many area ski resorts near Coeur d’Alene, check them all out with information about the mountain on our website here under the Area Information tab. And these resorts always have events to enjoy, check them out on our blog post Snow Much Fun! Be sure to check our What’s Happening page for the events happening in the area at all times, it’s updated regularly!
Also, take a look at our Winter category on our blog post here, which has all things winter!
FOR MORE ON SNOW FROM OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL
There is no question, the theater scene is not lacking here in Coeur d’Alene! There are numerous amazing shows to attend, year round. Because there are 3 different venues just in one city, you have plenty to choose from. In addition, there are 7 different shows scheduled within the next couple of months, check them out below.
Fun Home – Lake City Playhouse in Cd’A, Showings from Jan. 17th-Feb 2nd
When her father dies unexpectedly, graphic novelist Alison dives deep into her past. She tells the story of the volatile, brilliant, one-of-a-kind man whose temperament and secrets defined her family and her life. Moving between past and present, Alison relives her unique childhood. For instance, playing at the family’s Bechdel Funeral Home, her growing understanding of her own sexuality, and the looming, unanswerable questions about her father’s hidden desires. Fun Home is a refreshingly honest, wholly original musical about seeing your parents through grown-up eyes.
WINNER! Best Musical – 2015 Tony® Awards!
WINNER! Best Score (Jeanine Tesori & Lisa Kron) – 2015 Tony® Awards!
WINNER! Best Book of a Musical (Lisa Kron) – 2015 Tony® Awards!
WINNER! Best Musical – New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award, Obie Award, Lucille Lortel Award, Outer Critics Circle Award, Off-Broadway Alliance Award
The Marvelous Wonderettes – Cd’A Summer Theatre, Showings from Jan. 24th-26th at 7pm
This smash off-Broadway hit takes you to the 1958 Springfield High School prom. There we meet Betty Jean, Cindy Lou, Missy, and Suzy, four girls with hopes and dreams as big as their crinoline skirts! As we learn about their lives and loves, the girls serenade us with classic ‘50s hits including “Lollipop,” “Dream Lover,” “Stupid Cupid,” and “Lipstick on Your Collar.” The Marvelous Wonderettes will keep you smiling in this must-take musical trip down memory lane! Dinner, dessert and no host bar included with purchase of tickets.
9 To 5 – Aspire Community Theatre in Cd’A, Showings from Feb. 7th-16th
Three unlikely friends take control of their office and learn there is nothing they can’t do, even in a man’s world.With music and lyrics by Dolly Parton and book by Patricia Resnick, is based on the seminal 1980 hit movie, and is sure to be a hit with audiences.
Peter Pan, A Musical – Kroc Center in Cd’A, Showings from Feb. 21st – March 1st
Tells the classic J.M. Barrie tale of a young boy who refuses to grow up. On a quest to find stories with which to entertain his young cohorts in Neverland — an island refuge for “Lost Boys” — Peter returns to the real world and meets Wendy, Michael, and John Darling. The Darling children accompany Peter back to the magical Neverland. They get involved in all sorts of adventures, defeat the evil Captain Hook, and are changed forever. J.M. Barrie’s masterful story shines especially bright with a rich new score. A delightful musical featuring singing pirates, daring sword fights, and fantastical make-believe. Peter Pan, A New Musical is a story that is filled with magic, delight, and just a fairy dusting of heartbreak.
These Shinning Lives – Lake City Playhouse in Cd’A, Showings from Feb 21st-March 8th
Chronicles the strength and determination of women considered expendable in their day. Exploring their true story and its continued resonance. Catherine and her friends are dying, it’s true; but theirs is a story of survival in its most transcendent sense. As they refuse to allow the company that stole their health to kill their spirits, above all, endanger the lives of those who come after them.
Matilda – Lake City Playhouse in Cd’A, Showings from April 10th-26th
You are going to love this musical! Winner of 4 Tony Awards, in addition, New York’s Critic Circle Best Musical award. Inspired by the twisted genius of Roald Dahl, Matilda The Musical is the captivating masterpiece that revels in the anarchy of childhood, the power of imagination and the inspiring story of a girl who dreams of a better life. With book by Dennis Kelly and original songs by Tim Minchin. Matilda has won 47 international awards and, for that reason, continues to thrill sold-out audiences of all ages around the world.
Tarzan – Aspire Community Theatre in Cd’A, Showings from April 17th-April 26th
Based on Disney’s epic animated musical adventure and Edgar Rice Burrough’s Tarzan of the Apes. Tarzan features heart-pumping music by rock legend, Phil Collins, and a book by Tony Award-winning playwright, David Henry Hwang. High-flying excitement and hits, like the Academy Award winning “You’ll Be in My Heart,” as well as “Son of Man” and “Two Worlds,” make Tarzan an unforgettable theatrical experience.
Are you craving some snow fun this winter? We are, since there hasn’t been much snowfall! But, there is snow up in the mountains. And you may not know, the areas ski resorts often have fun events. Check out a few below and enjoy your winter with us.
Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area
- Winter Carnival – Jan. 12th
~ Wife Carrying Contest With Cash Prices ~ 3 Legged Race ~ Egg Carrying Contest ~ Day Of Family Fun ~
- Mountain BrewFest & Kids Snowbowling – Jan. 26th starting at 11am
~ Push A Child 12 Or Under On A Sled Into Inflatable Pins ~ Prices For Winners ~ Brews & Brats Available From 11-2 ~
- Super Bowl Sunday – Feb. 20th starting at 3:30pm
~ Ski & Board The Day Everybody Stays Home ~ Passing Competition with Gloved Hands ~ Kickoff Competition ~ Great Prices ~
- Fat Tuesday on Sunday – Feb. 23rd
~ Awesome Gumbo ~ BBQ ~ Drinks ~ Party Beads ~
Schweitzer Mountain Resort
- MLK Weekend – Jan. 18th-20th All Day
~ Fun Events Scheduled All Day, Everyday ~ Yoga ~ Snowshoeing ~ Twilight Skiing ~ Live Music ~ Fireworks ~
- Winter Trails Day – Jan. 25th from 9am-3:30pm
~ Free Access To Snowshoeing and Cross Country Skiing Trails ~
- Starlight Race Series – Feb. 7th-28th
~ Race With Your Team of 5 ~ Nightly Parties ~ Prices ~ Theme is “The Great GatSKI!” ~
Silver Mountain Resort
Slopestyle & Rail Jam!! – Feb. 1st & 2nd at 8:30am
~ USASA Kicking Off Their Season At Silver ~ Slopestyles Competition on the 1st ~ Rail Jam Is On The 2nd ~
- 10 Barrel BeerCat – Feb. 22nd & 23rd from 6-10pm
~ Coolest Mobile Snow Pub Is Coming To Silver ~ Made From Putting A Mini-pub On A Snowcat ~ Enjoy Drinking On The Mountain ~
Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Park
- 4th Annual Brewfest 2020!!! – Jan. 25th from 10am – 5pm
~ Beer, Cider & Wine Tasting ~ 16 Different Breweries & Creators ~ BBQ ~ Live Music ~
- “Mountain of Love” Valentine’s Party – Feb. 14th All Day
~ Chairlift Speed Dating ~ Live Music ~
- Fat Sunday Fish Fry – Feb. 23rd from 11:30am – 2:00pm
~ Celebrate Mardi Gras ~ Buffet Style ~ Southern Menu ~ Live Band ~
- Uptown Throwdown – Radio Brewing Company in Kellogg on Feb. 1st from 6-10pm
~ Blocking Off The Roads For Skiing & Boarding ~ Judges Determine Who Has Best Slopestyles ~ Cash Price ~ Beer ~ Music ~
- Farragut Winter Duathlon with the Trail Maniacs – Farragut State Park in Athol on Feb. 1st at 8am
~ Snowshoe & Fat Bike on Professionally Groomed Trails ~ Supports a Good Cause ~
- Sandpoint Winter Carndival – Sandpoint on Feb. 14th-23rd
~ Annual Winter Carnival ~ Fireworks ~ Parade of Lights ~ K-9 Keg Pull ~ Events Continuously Updated on Website ~
- Wallace Extreme Ski-Jor – Downtown Wallace on Feb. 15th all day
~ Known as the “Wildest Event in the Rockies” ~ ATVs Tow Skiers Down a Snow Covered Downtown Street Course ~
- Silver Valley Snowbeast Snowbike Races – Hendrickson Farm Near Mullan on Feb. 15th from 9am-5pm
~ Both Pro and Amateur Motorized Snow Bikers Race ~ Watch as They Complete a Grand Prix Course Around the West and Canada ~
- Mullan Vintage Snowmobile Races – Mullan High School Ballfield on Feb 16th
~ Vintages Snowmobilers Race ~ Specially Designed Course ~
When one thinks of Idaho’s top industries, they will likely automatically go to potatoes. Although we do supply around 1/3 of the country’s potatoes, that’s not all Idaho has to offer. If you’re thinking about moving over to the great state of Idaho, but wonder if you will find a job in your industry, check out the list of top industries below.
This industry is defined by highly technical & cutting edge processes as well as the employment of skilled & higher paid employees. As it continues to grow in Idaho, it’s encompassing more and more industries and occupations within itself. Advanced Manufacturing employs 6% of the entire state’s workforce, which is more than 40,000 jobs, and contributes $7.3 billion to the state’s GDP. In the next 10 years, this industry is expected to grow at least 10%.
North Idaho is currently home to more than 6 dozen aerospace companies which perform work such as aircraft operations, maintenance, parts manufacturing and aircraft assembly. But why Idaho? We’re actually unique in a few ways which makes this industry thrive. We’re close to many large international airports, as well as Boeing production facilities & operations, the vast airspace Idaho has to offer and our technological capabilities. In the next 10 years, the aerospace industry is expected to grow 41%.
This industry is a strong driver of Idaho’s economy, in fact, over the last decade the number of high-tech companies in the state grew 61%. Idaho is the location of the only U.S. based memory chip maker company, Micron Technology. Not to mention that we’re the center of Hewlett-Packard’s imaging and printing group. And we’re home to The Idaho National Laboratory, who both designed and construction the first nuclear reactor to generate usable amounts of electricity. As this industry continues to push boundaries, promote start-ups and fuel growth and discovery, it’s no wonder it’s forecasted to grow 20% over the next 10 years.
Idaho is more than just potatoes! In fact, in the nation we are first in trout production, second in Alfalfa hay and third in cheese. Other items produced in Idaho include dairy, beef, wool, sugar beets, wheat, barley, hops, onions, seeds and several kinds of fruit. Idaho has a lot to offer. Idaho’s power costs are the lowest in the country, industrial rates are are 40% less than the national average and we have a pro-business climate, so it’s no wonder companies come here to produce their goods. Food production is expected to grow 8% in the next 10 years.
Healthcare has always been a steady and consistent industry in Idaho. But, as more and more people move to Idaho, it increases the need for medical workers. Also, our population seems to be growing older at a faster pace than the rest of the country. Elderly individuals tend to need additional health care works than the average young person. Over the last 10 years, healthcare companies have added 46% more jobs and it’s only going to grow in the future.
Idaho is best known for it’s outdoor activities. So if you are an outdoor recreational company, or thinking of starting one, there is no better location than one you could test your products right outside your door. Our business environment allows for a low cost operation and a multitude of experts in this field. The outdoor recreation industry is expected to grow 18% over the next 10 years.
In today’s world, the location of your back office services such as accounting, human resources, sales and customer service can be just about anywhere. Idaho is a great location for this industry since you can serve your customers fully but avoid the high costs of a metro area. To add to it, people love living in Idaho so they are less likely to be unhappy or complacent at work. In the next 10 years, back office/shared services is expected to grow 25%.
For many, Idaho is one of the top places to visit. This, in turn, is causing the tourism industry to grow. This industry supports business that offer outdoor recreation, lodging, fine dining and more. The Idaho Dept of Commerce says that the tourism industry brought in $3.7 billion in 2017, including $475 million in local, state and federal tax revenues. What a huge boom to our state economy! As Idaho continues to draw is tourist, this industry is only going to grow.
As mentioned in the technology & innovation industry, we’re home to The Idaho National Laboratory (INL). INL is the nation’s lead nuclear research facility that has a science-based approach. Their research yields technically achievable, economically competitive and environmentally sustainable options. To add to it, Idaho’s population is growing which creates the need for new homes and business. These new homes and business require electrical services which increases the number of jobs needed in the utilities industry. The Energy/Utility industry is expected to grow 19% in the next 10 years.
Whether you’re buying, selling, building or remodeling – it’s good to know the home features that every buyer is looking for. Especially if you’re remodeling or building and plan to resale, some of these items may make or break your real estate transaction.
What Not To Do
Let’s first start with a quick list of no-no’s. Although the idea and everyday use of some of these items may work for you, they could severely hurt you if you plan to sell you home since they’re not practical for the average buyer:
- Removing closets
- Combining two rooms
- Adding a sunroom
- A garage converted to a living space
- Adding a pool or hot rub
- Any feature that is too personalized such as wall color/texture, too much wallpaper, or lavish lighting that may look dated overtime
What To Do
Below are some home features that will increase the resale value of your home and what most all buyers are looking for.
Since they are much easier to clean, durable, long lasting, and have a contemporary look, hardwood floors are one of the top features a buyer wants. Engineered wood flooring is a good option if you’re on a budget, although it may not last as long it’s still just as easy to clean and has the same look.
Kitchens are where we spend a lot of our time, whether we’re entertaining or cooking. So this feature is obviously going to make the list. A buyer will likely be looking for a modern kitchen with an open floor plan. Specific features that are of importance is a large pantry, an area to eat separate from the dining room (either an eat-in kitchen or island with a breakfast bar), new appliances that are stainless steel & energy efficient, ample counter space & storage, and quartz or granite countertops all with a modern design.
Who wouldn’t want to save money? Buyers look for and are more likely to be interested in a home when it’s outfitted with energy efficient appliances, windows, lighting and HVAC. These items help save money in utilities each month but don’t take away from the buyer’s comfort level.
Having a dedicated laundry room is increasing in importance with buyers. Especially one large enough to sort, iron, fold and stack the laundry until it finally gets put away. The placement of the laundry room in a home is also important. Having the laundry room near bedrooms, just off the kitchen, as a laundry room/mud room combination or even a laundry chute if it’s downstairs are all considered to be good locations
Many older homes do not have the luxury of a walk in closet, but the feature is quickly gaining popularity. Although closet space in general is very important, walk in closets off the master are considered essential for most buyers when purchasing a home. Depending on how large the closet is, it provides a space to showcase your wardrobe & accessories, keeps your clothes organized, and allows for enough room for a couple to store all of their clothes & accessories.
A large 2 car or 3 car garage allows for the buyer to park their vehicle indoors plus adds storage space. Unlike an attic or basement, the garage is much more accessible to store belongings. The space could also be used as a workshop or mudroom with space to build shelves and cabinets. The possibility with a large garage is endless.
Outdoor patios are a simple way to extend the living space of your home. It’s really easy for buyers to see themselves sitting outside playing with their children or entertaining when the backyard is really nice. This is typically an easy and cheaper way to increase the value of your home.
As a homeowner, you likely already have a checklist of items you need to complete before the snow falls. But, there are a few items that you may have forgotten about. Don’t let these items go unchecked or you may have unnecessary headache and expense in the future. Below are 6 tasks that should be completed but many homeowners overlook.
Note: If you do not have a checklist of home maintenance before winter, take a look at ours here!
1. Drain Gasoline and Oil From Your Yard Equipment
Mowing your lawn may be the last thing on your mind right now. But, to ensure your power equipment still runs in tip top shape next year, drain the remaining gas and oil out. If gasoline or oil sits too long it could cause changes in the chemical composition which could lead to a number of problems. Read about how gas can go bad and how to identify it here.
2. Clean Your Window Weep Holes
There are many windows that have weep holes on the exterior bottom of the frame. Their purpose is to drain any water that collects in the frame’s bottom channel. But often times they get clogged with bugs or debris of some kind which could then spill into your house. First, test the weep hole by pouring water into the track. If it doesn’t steadily drain out, there is likely a clog. If that is the case, you could spray it out with compressed air or poke a wire hanger into the hole.
3. Drain Sediment From Your Water Heater
You should drain some of the water from your water heater every year otherwise sediment will collect at the bottom. With gas powered water heaters, this will cause hot spots that will damage the tank. With electric powered heaters, it could cause the lower heating elements to fail. So draining it once yearly will not only extend the water heaters life but also save you money on your energy bills.
If your dryer vent is plugged, it could cause your dryer to run inefficiently or even cause a house fire. Before winter arrives, be sure to clean out your vent to prevent that from happening. It may not always be lint that causes the backup, there may be pests nesting or stuck exhaust hood flappers could also be the culprit. Each year, take the vent off the back of your dryer and clean it. You could get any debris out with a wet/dry vac or use a cleaning kit that can be purchased at home centers. Inspect your exhaust hood flappers to ensure they are in proper working order as well.
5. Check For High Water Pressure
High water pressure can cause issues with pipes, connections and appliances not to mention it wastes water. It is very easy to test to pressure, you just need to purchase a pressure gauge that hooks up to spigot or tub faucet. If the pressure is too high, just change the pressure reducing valve.
6. Test Sump Pump
It’s best to test you sump pump twice a year to avoid your home flooding. It is very simple to test it, you just need to dump water into the basin to make sure it’s working. And be sure your pump has a vertical float switch.
Consider adding the above tasks to your winterizing checklist to help with any possible issues that may arise over the winter season.
It’s almost December and if you know us even a little bit, you know we love the holidays! For those of you excited for all of December’s activities as well- Here is a list of all the fun things we could find in the local area.
Happy Holidays from John & Tracey Tindall
Ensure holiday shopping benefits both people and planet by attending this weekend long international marketplace with hundreds of handmade products from around the world. Nov. 29-Dec. 1, 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Please join us for our second annual Deck the Halls Tree Gala! This lovely event raises funds for One More Time, who’s mission is to help adults with life-limiting conditions have a memorable experience…one more time. There will be a family friendly viewing Saturday November 30th from 1pm to 5pm and again on Sunday December 1st from 1pm to 5pm where you can vote for your favorite tree and enjoy live music. The main event will be Thursday December 5th from 6pm to 8pm, where we will have a live and silent auction, raffles, delicious bites and festive beverages for $25/ticket or buy 4 for $100 and get a fifth ticket free! If you are interested in being a food vendor or decorating a tree for the Gala please contact Tiffinay 208-512-0814
Everyone is welcome to our 3rd annual Breakfast with Santa! Come enjoy breakfast, raffles, Santa pictures and letters writing! Santa is known to write you back!
100% of proceeds will go to our Christmas For Kids program.
Enjoy a beautiful brunch (with a mimosa bar!) while perusing the tiny trees up for silent auction bidding. Buy a raffle ticket for a full size decorated Super Tree that you’ll love! The tiny trees are all decorated by local community leaders, non-profits and businesses.
Puppet Shows: The puppet show, “TBD,” promises to be absolutely magical — fully staged across the front of a classroom, draped in gem-colored silks, and performed by gifted teachers using handmade scenery and marionettes. The show will play three times throughout the day: 11 am, 1 pm and 2 pm.
Crystal Cave: Children are invited to enter the Cave’s secret passage into a twinkling world of wonder and leave with a sparkling reminder of the season’s magic.
Craft-Making Room: There will be face painting and craft-making available for kids and adults to do together or on their own, including dipping beeswax candles by hand.
Kids-Only Store: There will be a store stocked with donated items where the children may buy gifts for their family members with just a dollar or two per gift.
Arts and Crafts Fair: On our lower level, you’ll find over 20 local artisan and craft vendor booths. A juried show with quality gifts and treasures just in time for your holiday shopping.
Food: There will be delicious homemade soups, quiches, Caesar salad and rolls for lunch; homemade cinnamon rolls for brunch, roasted chestnuts and a gourmet dessert café featuring cookies, cakes, pies, Evans Brothers coffee, and tea to purchase for very reasonable prices. There will be plenty of tables and chairs to sit and visit as you eat.
Hot Chai Hut: Warm, spicy homemade Chai served in a little getaway location. Transport yourself for a moment of relaxation in an exotic locale.
Parents-Only Silent Auction: We’ve gathered gently used toys and treasures that we’re sure parents would love to give as gifts to their little ones this Christmas. If you are a parent or an adult, stop in to bid on these one-of-a-kind items. Bidding closes at 3:30 pm.
Sandpoint Waldorf School’s Christmas Faire and Children’s Festival is open and free to all! Tickets, which are sold for $1 a piece, are available for the puppet shows and craft-making. Plan to spend the whole day. There is so much to do and see!
Elmo discovers that magic can be found anywhere when you believe in yourself. When magician extraordinaire Justin visits Sesame Street to put on a magic show for the whole neighborhood, Elmo wants to be part of the big event but he first must learn to persevere and practice his magic. Dec. 8, 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. Tickets for meet and greets before the shows also available with purchase of corresponding event ticket.
Grab your dancing shoes & your jingle bells! The JACC is having a Christmas Swing Dance! Live Music by “The Zonky Swing Band” of Spokane. Dance lessons by “Strictly Swing” of Spokane! Cookie Contest, refreshments & more! It don’t mean a thing….. if it aint got that Swing!!
Travel on a journey through time and heritage. Tears well up and hearts are filled with respect as the USO performance takes the stage and our military is honored. Throughout the show, your favorite Christmas classics are brought to life with song and dance. Crowds are amazed by the beautifully choreographed kickline tap numbers, and children light up as we travel north to Santa’s workshop. The grand Nativity conclusion reminds us all that there is a purpose behind the celebration. Traditions of Christmas is truly an experience you won’t want to miss.
Suzuki String Academy and Allegro Dance Studio are excited to offer the Sandpoint Community a collaborative Holiday concert Celebrating music and dance. Featured performers are local student musicians and dancers from our community in an engaing interactive live performance experience. This Inagural Event will showcase a matinee at 2pm and an Evening Gala at 7pm. Evening Gala begins at 6pm. Adults tickets include 1 beverage and dessert. Children tickets include, meeting the characters and a visit to the Hot Chocolate station where they can create a customized holiday souvenir. Evening Gala Event – $35.00
FREE ADMISSION & PARKING! Don’t miss this amazing winter version of our market! Over 60 vendors selling produce, honey, breads, jams and jellies, meat, eggs, milk and cheese! Plus loads of gift items from our artisans and crafters, and even plants and Christmas decorations! We pack the Jacklin Building, and offer free parking and admission, plus free homemade cookies and beverages. Live music, too!
Head down to Emerge on Sunday, December 15 to shop from a dozen local artists all in one location selling amazing handcrafted items.
Jewelry, ceramics, felt hats & scarves, kitchen accessories, and more will be featured!
Artist vendors to be announced soon.
Want to become a vendor? Fill out the application by November 8 here: https://forms.gle/HtxzkM3uWivGejx2A
Talented student musicians who have been entertaining our Jazz at the JACC audiences. You won’t want to miss this concert. Show starts at 6:30 pm, Doors open at 6 for hot chocolate and cider. Tickets $5 – all proceeds go to support this amazing group of musicians
The Charles Dickens holiday classic comes to life as a live 1940s radio broadcast, complete with vintage commercials for fruitcake (extra-fancy), and the magic of live sound effects and musical underscoring. A handful of actors bring dozens of characters to the stage, as the familiar story unfolds: Three ghosts take Ebenezer Scrooge on a thrilling journey to teach him the true meaning of Christmas. A charming take on a family favorite that will leave no one saying “Bah Humbug!”
BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND. It’s THE Holiday Party! Join us Saturday, December 21st, 2019 for our 5th Holiday Party on Lake Coeur d’ Alene. If you’ve attended this party before, you know it’s a can’t be missed kind of event! We will be celebrating on the Mish n’ Nock boat – recently remodeled and fab!
Experience just how sweet New Year’s Eve can be with us on twinkling Lake Coeur d’Alene! Our “New Year’s Eve Dessert Cruise” takes place on December 31st and features a dessert social, champagne toast and the most breathtaking views of NYE fireworks on the lake! 🍰
We all love our garbage disposal but when it breaks down, it definitely becomes a love/hate relationship. We’ve scoured the blogs and professional opinions and we have a short list of ways to keep your disposal grinding away.
- Really think about what you’re putting in there. Most food should be alright, but take note if the food is prone to absorbing water further, if its very hard or tough or if it might get really gunked up in cool water. Heavy and hard things like bones might break the mechanical parts of your disposal. Fats and oils can solidify in cold water and clog your pipes. Foods that absorb water will eventually turn into a gunked up clog.
- Cold water is best when grinding your waste up. You can absolutely use hot water at all other times, but cold water is recommended so that oils don’t melt and then solidify in the drain plug of the disposal. I personally run hot water after to push anything lingering further on down the drain.
- Clean it up! I like to use citrus peels and some dish soap to keep the disposal clean and smell free. You can put the peel and the soap in while the disposal is running and you can tell right
- Use an allen wrench to free up the disposal. Sometimes they get bound up or maybe you over did it when cleaning out the fridge. Don’t stress! Just grab an allen wrench and hand turn according to directions. Usually that will do the trick and you won’t burn out the motor! Win!
- Experts recommend keeping your disposal blades sharp by dropping some ice cubes down the disposal. It doesn’t take a long time but it does sound a little intense. Bonus feature- it’ll act as an abrasive and clean off any built up food from the blades and the housing.
- Did you know there are disposal cleaners? There are. But they are not to be confused with your standard drain cleaner- which have caustic chemicals that can/will damage your disposal’s seals and integral parts. Don’t do that. You love your disposal too much.
- Be very vigilant and cautious when you’re getting things that fall in to the deep, dark, slimy disposal. Set up a barricade, nail the kitchen door shut- do what you must do so that you don’t turn into a horror movie character and lose your pretty fingers. Please.
We are not plumbers nor are we disposal experts, mostly just parents who have had to take care of a few household maintenance issues. But if you’re looking- we do have a plumber we can recommend. These are just our real life bits of advice and some info from the pros. Please use common sense when trying to do any work on your disposal. If you think about it- its really a sink full of spinning knives… so safe.
For more information on proper use of your disposal, click here!
For a checklist to prepare your home for the colder months, click HERE!
If you have any other disposal tips or if you can think of a topic you’d like to hear about, please let us know in the comments.
Let’s Make Awesome Happen,