More good news for Pittsburgh’s food scene.
Good news! Weevils are harmless and the swarms we’re seeing of them now will dissipate soon.
Even though the modern world is moving more and more to digital spaces, we still have a lot of paperwork to keep track of. Especially if you’re a renter, there are a few very important documents that you need to store in a safe place. So this week, we’re offering a few tips for getting—and staying—organized.
First of all, you’ll need a filing cabinet or a file drawer inside a desk. If you’re tight on space and don’t have many documents to organize and store, consider picking up a filing box. There are a variety of styles of varying size, portability, and durability, so pick what’s right for your needs. An office supply store will have the biggest selection, but places like Walmart and Target have what you need as well. While you’re at the store, you’ll need to buy some hanging folders and file folders to fill your new box. You can go as colorful and decorative as you want, and sometimes color-coding can be a fun, simple way to further organize your papers. Ideally, you’ll want to get a box and folders that fit legal size paper so you don’t have to fold and cram to make stuff fit.
Once you’ve brought home all your supplies, it’s time to categorize your papers and label your folders. How you choose to organize the individual folders is up to you, but alphabetizing or placing things in order of importance are the two simplest ways to do it.
For example, you might label your first hanging folder “Home” and fill it with file folders that contain your lease, records of rent and utility payments, your renters’ insurance policy, pictures you’ve taken of your apartment pre-move-in as well as all your personal belongings, and any correspondences from your landlord.
Your next folder might be for your kids’ documents (birth certificates, passports, school and medical records, etc.).
If you’re a renter and pet owner, it’s also important to keep your pet’s records organized. For example, if you have any additional paperwork with your landlord permitting your pet in the rented property, you’ll want to save that either with your lease or with your pet’s vet records (or make a copy and save it in both places to be extra thorough).
The rest of the things you should file away are either pretty obvious (work papers, financial records, etc.) or unusual. By unusual we mean the instructions and manuals that come with electronics, appliances, and furniture. Why file these things? Because when you move, you’ll want to have the instructions handy for dis-assembly and reassembly of bulky furniture. Just think: you brought that entertainment center into the apartment in pieces, and if it won’t fit through the door fully assembled, you’ll kick yourself if you’ve lost the instructions in the shuffle.
Any papers that seem even a little bit important should be filed away for safekeeping. When spring cleaning time comes around, you can go back through your files and get rid of anything you definitely don’t need anymore. Just remember to shred documents that contain personal information before recycling them.
Spilled drink? No problem! The contractor who cleans the carpets here at Alvern Gardens just offered us the insider’s secret to cleaning your carpet: Dawn dish soap.
If you have a small stain from a food spill, there’s nothing better than the same soap you use for cleaning food off your dishes. Just remember it’s all about technique:
- Take a paper towel or a plain white towel or cleaning rag (nothing colorful, you don’t want the dye to transfer to your carpet) and dampen it with cold water.
- Put a couple drops of Dawn dish soap on it and lather it up a bit with your fingers.
- Gently press (don’t scrub) the towel onto the stain. Keep dabbing to lift it out of the carpet fibers. Again, gently dab, don’t rub or scrub, as that only pushes the mess deeper into the carpet.
And there you have it: a clean carpet is as easy as 1, 2, 3! Now, if you have a big mess on your hands, it’s time to rent a machine or call in a professional.
Here are a couple bonus pro tips:
- Never use bleach to clean a carpet: you’ll end up with a bleach stain!
- A dye stain will never lift out without ruining the color of the carpet, so always use a drop cloth when painting or take your DIY project outside or to the garage.
Remember: keeping your home spic and span while you’re renting it is good for your security deposit.
We’ve been scouring Pinterest for our favorite natural cleaning tips, and it’s time to share our findings.
- Because Alvern Gardens Apartments feature stainless steel kitchen sinks, we were especially excited about this cleaning regiment, though we’re not so sure about that last step of buffing with olive oil. Why waste delicious (expensive) olive oil like that? The tip of using a citrus fruit peel before tossing it is, however, genius.
- We’re especially excited to try the toaster and pan cleaning tips on this list.
- Dirty blender? Hair in your drain? Grimy grout? Dusty air vents? Dirty vacuum filter? Carpet stains? Nasty oven? Scratched ceramic? Nail polish spill? You name the job, this list will help you tackle it.
- Finally, here’s an excellent infographic that shows you how to make your own natural cleaners for every room in the house.
So why use all natural cleaners instead of the store bought stuff? First of all, it’s better for you, your family, and your pets as well as the environment to use natural products instead of harsh chemicals. Second, it’s gentler on the items you’re cleaning. If you have an acrylic tub, for example, some cleaners are so powerful that they eat away at the tub itself and do more harm than good. Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, making your own cleaning products can save you money.