• Are “Energy Vampires” Draining Your Bank Account?

    The term “vampire appliances” refers to appliances that continue to draw energy passively, even when they are not in use. These appliances are not just a seasonal concern – items like computers, small kitchen appliances, and cable boxes will draw energy all year long. This can add up to hundreds of dollars each year on your energy bills, and wasted energy. Learn how to identify these “energy vampires” below and prevent them from draining your bank account. In the Kitchen Most of us have small appliances in our kitchens. Toasters, coffee makers, blenders, and counter-top ovens (like pizza or toaster ovens) are common. Since you use these appliances on a…

  • Home Updates That Will Stand the Test of Time

    Any major home improvement project requires planning and thought. Design, budget, timeframe for completion, and opting for “DIY” or choosing a contractor are common considerations. Something you might not consider (but should) is the update’s “universal appeal” down the road. At some point, you will likely sell your home and move to a new one. Potential buyers of your current home might not share your enthusiasm for uniquely colored walls, or a bold and trendy kitchen design. If you can’t get a good return on the investment into your home, it might not be a wise choice. Read on to learn about designs that will be appealing to a broad…

  • Tips for Virtual Learning Success

    COVID-19 has changed the way we work, learn, and live our lives. This school year is no exception, and many kids are heading back to a virtual classroom instead of a physical one. For those that suffered through technology glitches and organizational nightmares this Spring, Fall should (hopefully) be a little smoother. School districts and teachers have had time to plan this year/semester out more thoroughly and adapt curriculum, instead of scrambling to roll with the changes on short notice. Even with better planning, virtual learning can present challenges to students and parents alike. Here are some tips to help you navigate (and maybe avoid) any hurdles. Get Organized… Both…

  • Working From Home? How to Stay Productive and Sane

    Many people find themselves working remotely from home these days. Working from home can be beneficial for some (there may be fewer distractions) but it can also present challenges. It can be hard for some employees to remain productive and happy while working in extended isolation. If you find yourself struggling, these tips can help you stay on task and keep your sanity too. Have a Dedicated Space Try to avoid working from your couch, or even worse, your bedroom. If you are not fortunate enough to have a separate home office, set aside or create a space just for work. This can be a nook in your living room,…

  • Shop Local! How to Support Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19 Restrictions

    Everyone has been impacted in some way by Coronavirus and the restrictions it’s placed on our every day lives. While many of us are fortunate enough to be able to adapt and work from home, many small business owners in our communities are not so fortunate. This type of shut down could break many small businesses, and they need your help to get through our safer at home order. If you are able to, please consider supporting them. Want to know how? Here are some resources and ideas. Buy A Gift Card! Some businesses are still allowed to conduct business in a modified capacity (like restaurants still being allowed to…

  • Homebound and Bored? Check Out These Resources for The Whole Family

    Many of you are probably starting to feel the effects of our safer at home order, and you can only go for so many walks each day. This is especially challenging if you’ve got children to keep engaged and entertained too. Fortunately, several companies are doing their part to help us through this unusual time with free and reduced rate services. Several more are adding virtual access to resources that are typically only available in person. From entertainment to education, the links below should have you covered! Streaming Services HBO – for FREE! HBO is making a large selection of it’s hit shows, documentaries, and movies available to stream for…

  • Spring Cleaning Tips + Printable Checklist!

    As soon as you get your first hints of warmer weather, and fresh air makes its way back into your home, you’re likely to get the urge to do some spring cleaning. It’s easy to get overwhelmed when faced with the prospect of deep cleaning your home from top to bottom, so here are some tips to help you break up the work and stay on task. Have a Plan Take a look around your home to identify what areas need the most help. Are there rooms that get more use and abuse? Are there areas that you tend to skip during your routine cleaning? Prioritize and break up the…

  • Cold Weather Home Maintenance Tips

    Winter in Southern Wisconsin seems to have arrived with a bang this year, and our homes are working overtime to shield us from the elements. Make sure you’re taking precautions to keep you and your home safe while we weather winter’s worst (and dream of Spring). Safety First Space Heaters – Make sure you have a newer model with an auto-shut off button on the bottom to prevent fires if it is tipped over by a pet or child. Keep space heaters a safe distance from furniture, drapes, or other flammable materials, and do not run them near water (like the bath tub). Never leave a running space heater unattended. Generators –…