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Category Gigi’s Blog

Is it time to declutter?

Do you know when it's time to declutter? Is the item expired? Get some tips from Aim 4 Order, professional organizer.
Time to declutter?

Thanks to Cindy Bernstein of Aim4Order for this episode of Tips from the Pros with a blog – do you know when it’s time to declutter?

This is a bit of a trick question, because nearly all of us can purge a few things at any time. And most of us could declutter a lot more. But, how can you tell whether or not it’s time to declutter?

For health reasons, is it expired?

Lots of things have expiration dates other than food. Don’t risk your well being by keeping things that are past their date. People hang on to cosmetics for years, but that is not recommended, especially if it’s something you put near your eyes. If you look on the label of the cosmetics there should be an image of a little jar with a number inside or next to it...

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November Events in Baltimore

The monthly calendar will help you find activities and November events that are happening in and around the Baltimore metro area. In addition, get the details on the events by following the links in the listing.


Baltimore Camera Club Exhibition in Lutherville

Image: Baltimore Camera Club

The Baltimore Camera Club is the oldest continuously operating photographic society in the United States. The club will feature an exhibition at Gallery Unicorn. It’s located at Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Road in Lutherville. Friday, November 1 at 10:00am to 3:00pm and More dates through November 24, 2019. Contact wlevy@comcast.net for details.


46th Annual Maryland Irish Festival

Image: Maryland Irish Festival

46th Annual Maryland Irish Festival

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Diagnosing the Most Common Chimney Smells

Thanks to Clean Sweep for this episode of Tips from the Pros about how to diagnose common chimney smells.

Image: Clean Sweep Maryland

Now that the colder months are here, it’s time to prepare your chimney for cozy nights by the fire. However, sometimes you start a fire or open the fireplace only to find an unpleasant smell. At Clean Sweep, we regularly receive calls about strange and suspicious odors coming from chimneys and fireplaces.

What Are the Most Common Chimney Smells?

  1. Animals: If an animal unfortunately got trapped in your chimney and was unable to leave, it could leave behind a rotting or decaying odor. You may not notice a smell but you hear scratching, crying or scurrying from your chimney. That’s a sign that you have an animal stuck inside...
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Moveable Feast Volunteering Event

Thanks to all of my clients and business partners who attended my Moveable Feast Volunteering Event over the weekend. We enjoyed the time spent working for a good cause.

Moveable Feast serves people who have a critical and life threatening illness. In addition, these people have trouble accessing, affording or preparing appropriate meals for themselves. All of the meals are delivered right to the people in need. They delivered over 700,000 meals in 2017! 

We volunteered as Kitchen Assistants for the afternoon and helped the organization with all aspects of the meals. We helped with packaging, labeling, and sorting, chopping and seasoning the meals. While we were there, we even did some light cleaning. 

Buying or selling your home? Cont...

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Keeping your smart home safe

Keep your smart home safe

Keeping your smart home safe is important, especially if you use the home apps when you are away from your secure wifi. How you use your cell phone when you are not home is crucial in keeping your personal information secure.

Make sure you don’t use public wifi when accessing your bank account, home security or other apps that are vulnerable. Set up a VPN for extra security or wait until later to check your bank balance.

Companies like NordVPN and Cloudflare are VPN providers that can help you protect yourself and allow you to use your cellphone whenever or wherever you want without worrying about who might be watching.

When you create passwords for your accounts, this is another area that can make you vulnerable...

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Quarterly Networking at Home Again

Last night I held my quarterly Business Networking Happy Hour at Home Again. As always, it’s a nice chance to get together with my B2B partners and talk about what is happening in their businesses.

The meeting was at Home Again on October 14th. The business is a local retail shop that sells art, antiques, and decor.

We had some snacks, introduced ourselves and get to explore the treasures in the delightfully quaint shop.

Our own B2B member, Hildy Hassman, has her artwork on display at the store. It was a great opportunity to get new art or decor during the meeting and to check out all of the wonderful things in the shop.

Visit their website to get a look at what they’re all about...

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Procrastination and your clutter

Thanks to Cindy Bernstein of Aim4Order for this episode of Tips from the Pros with an article about procrastination.

Procrastination and your clutter go hand in hand.
Making lists can help eliminate procrastination.

Fear is the parent of procrastination.
Procrastination is the thief of time.
Time is money.
~ Unknown

Procrastination

Procrastination in keeping your home organized can have its roots in fear or other emotions. It leads to clutter and clutter leads to more procrastination. Once you get a handle on that, you can let it go and start the organizing process.

Sometimes clutter comes from not having enough space to put things away. Other times it comes from hanging onto things we really don’t want or need. Once the clutter starts accumulating it can suck away your energy, cause stress and depression.

Often times we...

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The green tomato dilemma; or, will this fruit get any riper?

Thanks to the University of Maryland / Maryland Grows this article on the green tomato dilemma.

Does it ripen on its own after being picked?

I was reminded on social media this morning of an article published back in June by John Porter on the Garden Professors blog. It’s about which fruits (some of which are vegetables in a culinary sense) continue to ripen after being harvested, and which don’t. Using more scientific words, which are climacteric and which are non-climacteric. There’s a useful list — bookmark it!

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Unripe Siberian kiwis in May
Image: University of Maryland / Maryland Grows

I referred to that list this summer to confirm that kiwis are among the fruits that will continue to ripen once picked. I have three Siberian kiwi plants (Actinidia kolomikta), two ...

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October Events in and Around Baltimore

The monthly calendar will help you find activities and October events that are happening in and around the Baltimore metro area. In addition, get the details on what’s happening and where.


BoStrong Musical Festival

Image: BoStrong Foundation

The 3rd annual BoStrong Music Festival at Daniel’s Restaurant & Open Air Bar will be held on Saturday, October 5, 2019 from 12:00-6:00 pm at Daniel’s Open Air Restaurant. Enjoy music, food, and prizes in support of the BoStrong Foundation.


43rd Annual Sugarloaf Crafts Festival

Image: Sugarloaf Crafts Festival

Come to the Timonium Fairgrounds for the Sugarloaf Crafts Festival on October 11-13 and meet 275+ curated artisans, like jewelry and woodworkers for example, and shop their products.


12 Annual Baltimore DIY Fest

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Creosote 101

Get a lesson about creosote and how it can be a danger to your family.
Image: Clean Sweep

Thanks to Clean Sweep for this episode of Tips from the Pros about creosote in your chimney.

Every year, there are over 25,000 chimney fires across the United States. These fires lead to over $125 million in property damage. Aside from the property damage, there are numerous lives lost and harmed as a result. One of the most notable causes of these tragic chimney and house fires is creosote build-up inside of the chimney or fireplace. What does every homeowner need to know about this hazardous substance?

What Is Creosote?

It is a corrosive and flammable substance that builds up on the inside walls of chimneys and fireplaces. This chemical is made when ash, other gases and wood particles combine on the way out of your chimney...

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