It’s Time For Spring Cleaning!

Spring is in the air, so open-up those windows and let that fresh air in. Spring is the perfect time to take care of that cleaning you’ve been pushing off through the winter months. Here are some simple tips to help make your Spring cleaning a breeze!

While opening those windows, go ahead and give them a good scrub as well. The best cleaner to use is either a window spray, like Windex, or just soap and water. To make sure the cleaning solution does not dry before you’re able to wipe it clean, avoid the sun and do your window washing on a cloudy day. Another helpful hint is to purchase a window squeegee (Lowes or Walmart) to get a flawless finish.

The next things that are easily forgotten are the cabinets. Over time they can collect anything from dust to fallen food or grease particles to pet hair and anything in between. An easy way to get rid of the build-up, is to use a wash cloth or towel and a cabinet cream (try Home Depot or Amazon). Wipe down all cabinet fronts and in-between spaces and presto, your cabinets are like new!

Another area of your apartment home that probably needs some love is the carpet. The carpet is often forgotten about when cleaning. It’s a huge pain to pull out the vacuum cleaner and maneuver around the furniture, and it’s only really necessary to do a deep clean three to four times a year. So, skip the fuss and hire the pros to do your Spring carpet cleaning.

Now that the carpet has been brightened up, take a look at your closet. How long have you had that striped shirt that still has the tag on it? Have those jeans been on the shelf untouched for years? Well, there’s no time like the present! Clean out that closet and give yourself a fresh start. When putting things back, turn all your hangers the opposite direction. This will make it easier to see what you wear most often and what you should get rid of next time you thin out your clothes.

Pets of the Month!

DOG: My name is Cooper and I live at The Biltmore in Omaha, NE. I was adopted from the Humane Society a little over a year ago. I am a King Charles Spaniel and I’m 8-years-old. I enjoy long walks and long rides on my dad’s motorcycle.Squeaky duck is my favorite toy, and I love to meet new people and furry friends. My dad says I’m the sweetest guy you’ll ever meet!

CAT: My name is Kora and I am 4-years-old. I live in Houston, TX at the Lanesborough Apartments. I love to play fetch with my toy mice, and when I get tired from that, I enjoy sunbathing in the window. I love to cuddle and have my chin rubbed. When my parents fall asleep, I love to pull all of my toys out of my toy box. Sometimes I even leave a few of my toys in my mom and dad’s shoes to show them my love.

Think you have the world’s cutest pet and want everyone to know it? There’s nothing wrong with being a show off! Enter your pet in Richdale’s Pet of the Month contest for a chance to win a BarkBox or KitNipBox for your furry friend. Tell us about your furry friend and if he or she is featured, YOU win! Send pictures and a brief description to: TheLeaf@richdale.com!

Make Every Day Earth Day!

In order to keep our planet green and beautiful for all generations, we must work together. Being informed is the first step to ensuring the future of our incredible planet. The next step is to take action. There are three ways you can help.

Get involved, give to a cause and spread the word. To get involved, you can do something as simple as planting a tree or you can help reduce your ecological footprint by using less disposable plastic. You can also help by giving to a cause of your choice. Some great causes include National Geographic – helping the conservation of our precious wildlife, The Canopy Project – helping to plant trees all around the world, or the Earth Day Network – helping to educate people on the effects of global warming and how to help.
A final way you can take action is to spread the word! Take to your social media accounts and educate those closest to you about their effects on the environment and what they can do to reduce their footprint. If we all come together, we have a greater chance of conserving our beautiful home. To find out more and learn about other ways you can help, please visit earthday.org.

Carrot Patch Pudding Cups

Ingredients:

  • Pudding:
  • 1/4 C Cornstarch
  • 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1/8 TSP Salt
  • 3 C Whole Milk
  • 6 oz. Semisweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 TSP Pure Vanilla Extract

Decorations:

  • 15 Strawberries
  • 1 (12 oz.) Bag of Orange Candy Melts
  • 10 Oreos, Crushed to Crumbs

Pudding Instructions:

  • In a medium saucepan, combine the cornstarch, sugar and salt
  • Whisk in the milk slowly until fully incorporated
  • Heat over medium-low heat for 10 minutes until the mixture thickens –
    whisk occasionally to break up any clumps
  • Add the chocolate and continue to stir until smooth, about 5 minutes
  • Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla extract
  • Pour mixture through a fine-mesh strainer to remove any remaining clumps
  • Portion pudding into individual cups about 3/4 of the way full – place in
    fridge 2-3 hours

Decorating Instructions:

  • Line a cookie sheet with wax paper- Place candy melts in a microwave-safe
    bowl and heat for 30-second intervals – mixing well between each
    interval until smooth
  • Dip each strawberry in the candy melts as far up to the green as you can
  • Place the dipped strawberries on the wax paper
  • Use a spoon to drizzle more orange candy melts for a striped look
  • Place strawberries in the fridge for 5 minutes to allow the chocolate to
    cool completely*When the pudding is ready, sprinkle each cup with a layer of Oreo
    crumbs. Place a dipped strawberry in each cup, submerging the
    strawberry about halfway down. Store in the fridge until ready to serve.

February Pet of the Month

My name is Charlie. I am a Yorkie and I live in Lincoln, NE at the Lenox Village Apartments with my mom and dad, Deb and Mike. I am 11 years old. I love to walk at least 3 times a day, sometimes more. I love being able to go to work with my dad while my mom travels during the week. I love treats and expect one every time I come back in from a walk. My mom and dad love me to pieces and I love them very much too!

Recipe: Taste the Love with Red Velvet Puppy Chow!

Ingredients:
• 5 C. Rice Chex Cereal
• 3/4 C. White Chocolate Chips
• 1/4 C. Chocolate Chips
• 2 oz. Cream Cheese (room temp)
• 1 1/2 Tbsp. Milk
• 1 C. Red Velvet Cake Mix
• 1/2 C. Powdered Sugar
• Valentine Colored M&M’s
• Heart Sprinkles

Directions:
1. Measure out Rice Chex cereal and place into large bowl.
2. Place cake mix and powdered sugar into a large plastic bag or tupperware with a lid.
3. Melt chocolate chips together in the microwave for 30 second increments. Careful not to burn and stir until smooth.
4. Stir cream cheese and milk into the melted chocolate.
5. Pour chocolate over Rice Chex cereal and stir until coated.
6. Dump cereal into the bag or tupperware with powdered sugar and cake mix. Shake well.
7. Spread onto a cookie sheet and let cool.
8. Mix with M&M’s and sprinkles and serve!

Recipe from: www.yourcupofcake.com/2013/01/red-velvet-puppy-chow.html

Unique Sites For Valentine Gifts

Forget the flowers and chocolate this year! Instead, buy your valentine something unique and unexpected. Check out these cool sites for hand-made creations and other thoughtful gifts. If you can imagine it, they probably have it! Most of what you will find on these sites cannot be found in stores, which guarantees a unique gift for that special person on February 14th.

POPCHARTLAB.COM
For Her: The Compendious Coffee Chart
For Him: The Very Manly Varieties of Beer Stainless Steel Tumbler

ETSY.COM
For Him: Personalized Wooden Watch
For Her: Personalized Metal Keychain

OLIVEANDCOCOA.COM
For Her: French Grapefruit & Bergamot Spa Crate
For Him: Gentlemen’s Deluxe Shaving Set

Recipe: Life is better with fresh baked cookies!

Ingredients:
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Canola or Vegetable Oil
1 box Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate or Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix
1 bag Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips

Instructions:
1. Combine cake mix, eggs, and oil in a large mixing bowl and beat well.
2. Stir in peppermint crunch baking chips.
3. Chill dough in refrigerator for 1 hour.
4. Form 1 inch balls and drop onto ungreased non-stick cookie sheet.
5. Bake for 7-9 minutes at 350 degrees.

Recipe from: http://thefrugalgirls.com/2013/12/peppermint-crunch-dark-chocolate-cake-mix-cookies.html

5 Helpful Tips for Hosting the Holidays in Your Apartment

1. Be Mindful of the Temperature. When you entertain a large group, we recommend you lower the thermostat 2 to 4 degrees a few hours before your guests arrive. Unless you put an extra dose into your apartment before your guests arrive, your HVAC system will lag behind the unexpected demand.

2. Designate a Spot for Your Guests’ Things. When having guests over, it is a good idea to have a place in mind for them to stash their coats, gloves, hats, purses and anything else they may have brought with them. This keeps the main entertainment
space open.

3. Limit the Amount of Utensils Needed for Food. When making food for a larger group of people, it is important to be aware of the amount of dishes and utensils you need. Finger foods are fun and leave you with less clean up! Be sure to have your sink and dishwasher cleared for any incoming dishes.

4. Spread Snacks Around Your Home. Once all of the delicious snacks are ready to serve, take a moment to find places around the room to set them up. That way all of your guests are not all clumped together in one spot and it makes better use of the space.

5. Guest Suites – If you have guests in from out of town, contact the leasing office about available guest suites in your community. The suites are definitely cheaper than a hotel and will feel like a home away from home!

Voted Best in Dallas

Dallas Arboretum

The Dallas Arboretum is a spectacle as Halloween draws near. Stop by to pick out a pumpkin from the Tom Thumb Pumpkin Patch and navigate the hay bale maze. Also explore Pumpkin Village: fairy-tale houses built of pumpkins, perfect for photo ops with the family. General admission is $15 for adults, $10 for children ages 3–12; and on Wednesdays, buy one admission ticket at the gate and get one free.

8525 Garland Rd, Dallas, TX 75218             (214) 515-6615

Halls Pumpkin Farm

If you feel like visiting Grapevine, make Halls Pumpkin Farm a must-see. At this real working farm you can pick your pumpkins off the vine, or snag a pre-picked one from one of the vignettes around the farm. On the weekends, Halls offers tractor-pulled hayrides out to the two-acre corn maze. Bring food and drinks if you like; but concessions are available.

3420 Hall – Johnson Rd, Grapevine, TX 76051           (817) 991-1052