Miss Your Basement?

March 26, 2012

A new kind of home has opened in Florida: It’s theTransformation House in Harmony Transformation House and it comes with its own Spacement©, a flex space like no other, especially if you miss that basement you had up north.

By opening a door and stepping up to the Spacement©, you find space that can be used for air-conditioned storage (Florida basement), a bonus area (grandchildren’s space), bedroom(s), bathroom(s) or a mixture of all. This flexible space can include one or two baths and two or three flex rooms.  And no matter what configuration the homeowner selects, the static mechanical, plumbing and electrical design coincides.

 Built in the town of Harmony by Wetherington Builders, the 2,500 square-foot, energy-efficient home is being certified by Tracy DeCarlo of One Stop Green Home Certification.

For more information, visit http://www.homebuildinglessons.com/TDBlog/2012/02/20/transformation-house-energy-efficient-flexible-green-and-accessible-3/

 

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Milestones

July 15, 2011

Last weekend, Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees achieved a milestone only 27 other major league baseball players have ever done in more than 100 years of America’s Pastime — 3,000 career base hits. And he did it with a home run.  We saw the excitement in his face as he rounded the bases and, we were just as excited for him.

We are a society of milestone lovers, whether personal or otherwise. When we decide to lose 20 pounds, and we reach that plateau, we relish in that feeling of accomplishment. We also love seeing someone else succeed — Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition is a pretty riveting show.

And it does not have to be just about numerals. It can be firsts, or lasts, the latter of which we are collectively celebrating right now as the last Space Shuttle — Atlantis — completes its mission. Quite a milestone.

Other milestones have nothing to do with numerals or rankings: getting married, having a baby, buying your first home, graduating from anything. These events and others sprinkled throughout our lives make us feel good, special.  

No doubt, milestones are one of the keys to happiness. We are happy when we reach them; we are happy when others do.  

So relish those milestones. Derek Jeter did. And so did we.


Happy Mother’s Day

May 13, 2011

On Mother’s Day morning, 2011, a man on our quiet neighborhood street took his own life on his back patio. A chilling morning for many to say the least, but a more devastating one for his mom, to be sure. 

Reasons are not important, nor how it all went down. The reality is the lives of his survivors were changed forever in a single instant.  

Since Sunday, two things have weighed on my mind that should be food for thought for all of us. 

First, more of us need to watch closely for depression in our fellow man before it is too late. According to WebMD,

more than 90% of people who die by suicide have clinical depression or another diagnosable mental disorder.

And second, guns do kill people. In 2007, 34,598 people killed themselves, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Half of them used a firearm.


Giving the Gifts Of Gardening and Fitness

December 7, 2010

 

Volunteers from Get Active Orlando (GAO), the organization that acts as the City of Orlando’s link to health and fitness initiatives, announce the debut of three new community gardens in the Orlando area. Utilizing grant monies from the Blue Foundation, this year GAO funded five school- and youth-based gardens designed to teach children the importance of healthy eating.

Sunrise_Elementary_Garden
Sunrise Elementary Garden

 

The new gardens –the New Image Youth Center Garden, 

Reeves Terrace Recreation Complex Community Garden and the Sunrise  

Elementary School Garden — also promote physical activity. 

“It’s a special feeling to have these gardens up and running at a time of the year associated with bountiful feasts and giving thanks,” notes GAO Chair Leah Nash. She says two other gardens — the Fern Creek School and Community Garden and the Orlando Day Nursery Garden — are scheduled to open by the end of the year. 

 For more information or to become involved with GAO, please visit www.getactiveorlando.com.


I’m Dreaming of a Green Christmas

December 7, 2010
During the rush of the holiday season, it may be harder to beGreen ChristmasGreen Christmas the green person you strive to be throughout the year, but here are some simple ideas from Mahalo that can help us all feel a bit better.
The 2.6 billion holiday cards sold each year in the United States could fill a landfill the size of a football field 10 stories high. Send e-cards or at least reuse cards you receive to make gift tags.
 
The tree: If you love having a real live tree, try to buy your tree as close to its source as possible to cut down on fossil fuels. If you prefer the artificial kind, make sure it was made in the U.S.A.
 
Switching to LEDs for your holiday light display is 90% more efficient than incandescent lighting. 
 
The best way to eliminate waste is to give less. 

Be a giver of green gifts, i.e., items made of organic or recycled materials.  

 Skip the wrapping paper if possible. Wasting an entire roll of paper disguising a new bike is a waste. And remember to reuse bows.

 For a complete list of green tips for the holidays, visit Mahalo.


Keep Your Pumpkin From Shriveling Up

October 29, 2010

Does your pumpkin need a facelift?

Let’s face it, once you’re done removing the orange goo Jack-O-Lanternand the ritual of carving the family pumpkin is over, old Jack can start to look a little tired within a few days, especially in the South.

Here are a few tips from Articlebase.com to keep your creation still looking good for the big day:

* Put your pumpkin in cold water after it’s carved; it will soak up the water and get firm.

* If your pumpkin starts to shrivel, put it back in cold water for one to eight hours.

* Add a very small amount of unscented bleach to the water to stop premature molding.

* Put a thin coating of petroleum jelly on exposed, cut edges to keep the water from evaporating and to preserve the cuts, as well as the pumpkin.

 * Spray your pumpkin with a plant mister to keep it from shriveling.


Racism in America Lives at Rutgers and Beyond

October 1, 2010

This is not a blog about Lebron James’ recent comments about whether racism had something to do with the way he was treated when he left Cleveland for Miami. Like Lebron said, there may have been some racism involved, whether people played that card consciously or not. Indeed, racism remains one of America’s disgusting little secrets. If it didn’t exist at all, people wouldn’t be so uncomfortable talking about it.

And this is not about racism based on color, it’s about being racist in general against other people that are different than you by way of intolerance, ignorance, discrimination, and bigotry. The Rutgers student who committed suicide by jumping off the George Washington Bridge did so after allegedly being secretly filmed by his idiot, closed-minded roommate who then outed him on the internet.

Sadly, there are too many other stories of young people who took their lives in similar situations. If you haven’t seen the video posted by Ellen DeGeneres today, watch it: http://www.facebook.com/#!/video/video.php?v=592846987806&ref=mf

What is wrong with people? Why must some humans feel the need to ruin others lives because they are different from them?

What a sad reflection on a society that is supposed to be advanced. Maybe as far as technology goes, we are;  but we are far from being an advanced culture when it comes to practicing tolerance and good will toward man.