Consumer Real Estate News

    • Understanding Medical Sharps and Safe Disposal Options

      13 November 2019

      (Family Features)--If you're among the millions of people in the United States who suffer from a chronic illness, you may use "sharps" to manage your medical condition at home or on the go. For example, many people with diabetes self-inject at least two insulin shots every day, and conditions including allergies, arthritis, cancer, infertility, migraines and psoriasis, among others, may also require the use of a sharp to administer medication.

      A medical term for devices with sharp points or edges that can puncture or cut skin, sharps may be used at home, at work and while traveling to manage medical conditions. Examples of sharps include:

      - Needles. Fine, slender, hollow pieces of metal used to inject medication under the skin

      - Syringes. Devices to which needles are attached in order to inject medication into or withdraw fluid from the body

      - Lancets (aka "fingersticks"). Instruments with a short, two-edged blade used to get drops of blood for testing

      - Auto injectors, including epinephrine pens. Syringes pre-filled with fluid medication designed to be self-injected into the body

      - Infusion sets. Tubing system with a needle used to deliver drugs to the body

      - Connection needles. Needles that connect to a tube used to transfer fluids in and out of the body

      Disposing of medical sharps safely may be a concern. In fact, in interviews conducted by SafeNeedleDisposal.org with sharps users, people who use needles and lancets to manage their medical conditions believe it is their responsibility to dispose of sharps safely, but lack clear, factual information on how to do so. Existing information does not always personalize disposal guidelines for people in every state or locality.

      "SafeNeedleDisposal.org helps people in the United States make sense of safe sharps disposal options nearest to their home, work or wherever is convenient," says Larry Ellingson, vice president of the National Diabetes Volunteer Leadership Council. "This resource is much needed for people who regularly use needles to manage health conditions like diabetes and want to do the right thing with their used sharps."  

      According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, sharps not disposed of properly may cause injury. Consider these three steps for safe and proper sharps disposal:

      1. Place used sharps in an FDA-cleared sharps disposal container or a strong plastic container such as an empty laundry detergent or bleach bottle.

      2. Seal the container with duct tape and label it "do not recycle."

      3. For most sharps users, place the sealed container in the household trash, never the recycling. A resource like SafeNeedleDisposal.org can be used to look up local disposal guidelines by zip code. For states that do not allow household disposal, the website provides zip code-specific information on convenient drop-off locations that will accept used sharps.

      Source: NeedyMeds

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Can You Recycle Used Paint?

      13 November 2019

      It's been a full decade since the PaintCare, a national nonprofit organization created by paint manufacturers, began providing consumers with a convenient network of locations where they can recycle postconsumer (leftover) paint, stain and varnish. Still, many homeowners don't know about this valuable outlet.

      The program is funded by a fee on sales of new paint and remitted to PaintCare by paint manufacturers to handle paint collection, transportation, processing and public education. 

      Part of that public education campaign involves providing the following tips to consumers:
      Buy right. Many people have leftover paint because it’s not easy to know how much to purchase in the first place, so get help estimating the right amount of paint needed for your projects by visiting paintsmart.org for a list of paint calculators to help you paint smarter. 

      Store right. An unopened can of paint can last for decades if it is stored in a dry, cool (but not too cold), dark place. So even if you think you will get rid of your leftovers, head to paintcare.org for tips to keep your paint in better condition so someone else can use it.

      Use it up. Using up what you have is a great way to reduce leftover paint. Visit paintcare.org for a few ideas to get you started, like using light shades as primers for other paint projects, painting a small room like a bathroom or a closet, or even the insides of drawers.

      Give it away. Have your friends or relatives commented on how much they admire the colors you selected for your home? Offer them the leftovers. Churches, schools and nonprofits that do community projects (e.g., Habitat for Humanity) may be able to use leftover paint—or consider donating it to a school or group that creates murals or does community painting projects. 

      And when you're ready to recycle, find your closest drop-off locations at paintcare.org. 

      A final tip: before dropping off paint, please call the site to check business hours and make sure they can accept the type and amount of paint you would like to recycle.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • A Time-Saving Family Meal: Mystic Mini Turkey Loaves

      13 November 2019

      (Family Features)--Leading a busy lifestyle doesn’t always leave time for spending hours in the kitchen, and these Mystic Mini Turkey Loaves can be made in advance and frozen for later use. Perfect for simplifying busy evenings, they are made with mushrooms, yellow onions, oat milk, pumpkin pie spice and almond milk yogurt.  

      Mystic Mini Turkey Loaves
      Prep time: 25 minutes
      Cook time: 40 minutes
      Serves: 8

      1     large egg
      2     pounds 93 percent lean ground turkey
      1     medium DOLE® yellow onion, finely chopped
      1/2     cup oat milk
      1/2     cup whole-wheat panko breadcrumbs
      2     teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
      1     teaspoon salt, divided
      1     tablespoon olive oil
      1/2     package (8 ounces) Dole mushrooms, sliced
      2     cups unsalted chicken stock
      3     tablespoons whole-wheat flour
      1/4     cup plain almond milk yogurt
      1/4     teaspoon ground black pepper
      1     tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

      Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line rimmed baking pan with parchment paper. 

      In large bowl, whisk egg; gently mix in turkey, onion, oat milk, breadcrumbs, pumpkin pie spice and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Form turkey mixture into eight (4-by-2 1/2-inch) loaves; place on prepared pan. Bake loaves 40 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. 

      In large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil; add mushrooms and cook 5 minutes, or until tender, stirring occasionally. In a medium bowl, whisk chicken stock and flour; add to skillet and cook 3 minutes, or until thickened, whisking occasionally. Whisk in yogurt, pepper and remaining salt. 

      Serve loaves topped with gravy and sprinkled with parsley.  

      Tip: To freeze loaves, prepare turkey loaves but do not bake; freeze 2 hours, or until frozen. Wrap loaves tightly with plastic wrap and freeze in freezer-safe, zip-top plastic bags up to 3 months. Thaw loaves in refrigerator overnight then bake on parchment-lined rimmed baking pan at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. 

      Source: Dole/Disney

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Plumbing Tips for a Multigenerational Household

      13 November 2019

      If you currently live in a multigenerational house, or plan to transition your current home to a multigen setup, you know there are dozens of intricacies.

      "Households that are made up of two or more generations have increased significantly in the last decade," says Max Rose, owner of Four Seasons Plumbing. "More baby boomers have the means to accommodate additional family members, not only aging parents, but also adult children and grandchildren."

      To help, Four Seasons Plumbing offers the following tips for homeowners who are transitioning their homes to accommodate multiple generations of family members.

      Install a toilet lid lock. If there are young children in the home, it's a good idea to install a toilet lid lock to keep them safe. Toilets can pose a drowning hazard to toddlers. A toilet lock can also protect your plumbing from crafty grandkids who flush toys and other objects down the toilet.

      Lower the water heater temperature. Always make sure to test the water temperature before placing a child in the bath. For added protection from scalding, lower your water heater temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. 

      Eliminate bathtub slipping. Add anti-skid strips or non-slip bath mats to the tub or shower to keep children and seniors safe from falling accidents. 

      Add grab bars. Install grab bars by the bath and toilet to provide mobility assistance for elderly relatives and to keep them safe from falling.

      Install cabinet locks. It's a good idea to add cabinet locks to keep children from accessing medication and cleaning products. They are an affordable and discreet way to keep children safe.

      Invest in a shower chair. Shower chairs can provide seniors more stability for bathing and allow them to rest when necessary. A transfer bench is also a great option for seniors who struggle getting in and out of the bath area.

      Install an ADA height toilet. A standard ADA height toilet is a great option for family members with limited mobility. Family members that suffer from arthritis or have had a knee or hip replacement can benefit from this toilet style.

      Source: Four Seasons Plumbing

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Utilize This Winter's 'Budget Saving Time'

      12 November 2019

      When homeowners across the nation “fell back” for Daylight Saving Time (DST), many folks were already anticipating cranking up the heat to combat the longer, colder nights in many parts of the country. However, the experts at Window World firmly believe that the sun doesn’t have to set on lower energy bills.

      To help consumers in colder climates take advantage of natural sunlight to keep energy costs in check, Window World has released its "Budget Saving Time" guide.

      The guide sums up six easy ways homeowners can cut their energy bills:

      Design with daylight. Anyone considering home improvements can maximize the sun's limited presence by "daylighting"—using windows and skylights to bring sunlight into your home. Remember these points:
      - South-facing windows allow most winter sunlight into the home.
      - North-facing windows bring in relatively even amounts of natural light.
      - East- and West-facing windows are bright sources of light during either the morning or afternoon, but they don’t contribute much to solar heating.

      Energy-efficient lighting. Choose bulbs with the ENERGY STAR® label that meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
      Also:
      - Consider using timers or dimmers that will save electricity by turning lights off automatically or offering lower light levels.
      - Get into the habit of turning the lights off whenever you leave a room.

      Save big with window coverings. Keep drapes open on South-facing windows by day and close them at night. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, when drawn during cold weather, most conventional draperies can reduce heat loss from a warm room up to 10 percent.

      Double or triple treat your windows. Consider installing double- or triple-pane windows that have high-performance glass. The air, or in some cases gas, in between the window panes acts as extra insulation.

      Look for leaks. Air leaks around windows, doors and pipes can be filled with caulk or special coverings. Additionally, ensure weatherstripping around windows and doors is in good condition and isn’t frayed or worn down.

      Get programmable. Install programmable thermostats to keep temperatures from getting too hot or cold when you’re not at home.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.