Tips For Closing Up Your Summer Home

Tips For Closing Up Your Summer Home

Are you planning on spending time out on the beach this summer? Do you have a summer home that you plan to head to for a large portion of time? We know that keeping track of one home can be hard enough as it is, but don’t forget to keep track of your summer home just as much as your own home. There are some things that you should make sure you do once you’re ready to leave your summer paradise and head back. Here are some tips for closing up your summer home.

Inspect your property. Take a walk around the property to see if there are any damages to anything, and if there are then make a checklist and see which of those things need to be fixed now and which can wait. Make sure you’re inspecting the roof, chimney, siding, foundation and any trees that might be leaning in the area.

Turn off the water. This one is important, you want to make sure that you’re cutting off the water at the main supply point in order to prevent freezing of the pipelines during winter. Even if your home is heated during the winter this is important because you never know what could happen. Bad weather could easily knock out the power and cause your furnace to fail.

Empty and clean your appliances. This one is just as important, you want to make sure that you’re cleaning out the fridge of any food that might still be in it. Not to mention you should be wiping down the surfaces of almost every appliance in your home to make sure that no mold begins to grow or that the home starts to smell.

Turn off and unplug all electronics and appliances. It should be obvious why you need to do this one. Unplug and turn off all electronics and appliances in order to avoid wracking up an electrical bill. Sometimes we forget that having things plugged in can still bring our bills up more than what we expect, so be sure that you’re checking every outlet before you leave.

These are just a few reminders for when you plan to head back from your summer home. We know that the leave can be bittersweet, but it wouldn’t help to come back only to find something happened to your home away from home, right? Take these tips into consideration and make sure that you’re checking for other important things you can do to help close up that summer home. Stay safe this summer!

Get Your Home Guest Ready In 15 Minutes

Get Your Home Guest Ready in 15 Minutes

Many of us plan on hosting parties at our homes or simply having guests over in order to catch the latest football game or maybe your children are going to have a playdate while the parents relax. No matter what your plans are it’s important to make sure that your home is ready and expectant for guests. We know that sometimes life can get the better of you and things can be a little messy around the house, so we’ve prepared some tips and tricks in order to help you get your home guest ready in 15 minutes.

Focus on cleaning up the areas your company will see. If you have plans to have your company inside of the house then spend a bit of time straightening up some of the areas you know they will see. Are there some dishes laying around in the kitchen? Maybe the bathroom could use a bit of tidying up. Spend 5 minutes on three of the most important areas in your home that they will see and straighten them up as best you can.

Have your kids put away their belongings. If you notice that there’s an abundance of shoes or jackets, maybe even some backpacks lying around the house then give your child a reminder. Let them know that you’re expecting company and that they need to bring their belongings to their room or put them in their respective places.

Make sure to shut your doors! Are there any spaces that are a bit messy that can avoid being seen? Simply shut the door to that messy office. This will make sure that no one is aware of the mess and keeping closed doors also helps if there are other children over and they get a little curious, it helps keep them away from spaces where they should not be playing.

These are just some of the small steps that you can take to make sure that your house is guest ready in 15 minutes or less. There are so many other things that you can do, so get creative with the fifteen minutes you have and get tidying!

Stay Cool: Dehydration and Heat Stroke Tips and Warnings

Stay Cool: Dehydration and Heat Stroke tips and warnings

Summer is right around the corner and that means that so many of us will be heading off to the beach or even taking the time out of our day to take a nice run in the sun. One of the things that you need to be sure of before you head out into the blazing heat is how to prevent dehydration and heat stroke. There are plenty of precautions that you can take in order to make sure that you’re staying safe in the midst of the hot weather and we’re here to give you some of the most important ones.

  • Drink fluids 30 minutes before an activity begins.
  • Make sure to take breaks 15-20 minutes between what you are doing in order to take in fluids.
  • Don’t just drink fluids before, but drink them after the activity is finished.
  • The color of urine can be determined to tell how hydrated you are. Light like lemonade usually means that you are hydrated and dark like apple juice tends to mean that you are dehydrated.

What should you do if dehydration or heat stroke is suspected?

  • Hydration should take place immediately. Depending on the severity of the situation make sure to contact 911.
  • Make sure you are in a cool area and cool the body with water.
  • Drink something cold such as a sports drink. If unable to, seek medical attention immediately.
  • Raise your legs 8-12 inches.
  • Remove any equipment or excess clothing.
  • Obtain medical clearance prior to returning to any physical activity.

These are some tips and warnings to make sure that you are taking into consideration this summer. Temperatures get up there and you want to make sure that you are prepared for anything. Not just for you, but for your spouse or even your children. Don’t head out without being appropriately dressed and taking a few drinks with you to stay hydrated!

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

August 1st: Toddler Storytime at the Library

Are you looking for something to do with the little ones during the week? Every Wednesday at the West Covina Library there will be held a story time for toddlers! This starts at 11:30AM and runs until 11:50AM as well as 12:15PM to 12:35PM.  Give them a chance to experience magical and exciting stories packed with adventures and even some lessons to help them along the way! Let their imagination run wild and give yourself a little down time as well.

August 7th: Knitting & Crocheting Club

Looking to pick up a new hobby? Maybe you’re simply looking to get out of the house and be around people that share the same enjoyment for Knitting and Crochet as you. If so, then head down to the West Covina Library on the 7th of August to join others in your community. Take some time out of your day to relax and have a knittastic time! This event will take place at 1PM, so be sure to head on down if you’re in the area!

August 11th: Summer Fest 2018

August 14th: Adult Art Activity at The Library

Why should your kids be the ones having all the fun with arts and crafts this year? If you’re a creative or artistic person then come express your talents at the West Covina Library on the 14th of August. This adult art activity will take place from 10:30AM until 11:30AM. For more information in regards to this event then please contact the library at: (626)-962-3541. Don’t hesitate to head out and get your imagination on!

August 30th: SCORE Workshop

Are you interested in growing your business or maybe you’re looking to start a business. Whether or not you’re an owner or just opening up shop this SCORE workshop is the place for you! SCORE is a non-profit association that provides free and confidential business advice to, to help start, grow and maintain a business throughout the city. This event will be held at West Covina City Hall from 9AM until 12PM. Don’t hesitate to head down and learn a little something!

Bike Safety

Bike Safety

 

Summer is the perfect time to bust out those bicycles and get out the active wear. The perfect time to start working on that workout routine that you might have been putting off until now. If you plan on heading out for a cycle around your neighborhood or are planning to teach your children how to ride a bicycle this year then there are a few things that you need to keep in mind. Safety is the most important part of any activity, so let’s talk about some of the precautions you can take to reduce a risk of injury.

 

Wear a properly fitted bicycle helmet. This one is important for obvious reasons. You want to make sure that you’re protecting your head, but how can you do that if your helmet isn’t fitted to your head properly? There’s a possibility that the helmet will fall off if it doesn’t fit correctly, and that can create many safety risks. Especially make sure that your child’s helmet is fitted before they take off!

 

Adjust your bicycle fit. Another important fit to have is to make sure that your bicycle fit is adjusted for you. There should be allowed 1-2 inches between you and and the top bar when using a road bike and 3-4 inches when using a mountain bicycle. The seat should be level front to back. The seat height should be adjusted to allow a slight bend at the knee when the leg is fully extended. The handlebar height should be at the same level with the seat.

 

Check your equipment. Something that a lot of people likely forget to do before they set out is to check their tires. Make sure the tires on your bike aren’t flat, and more importantly, check the tires on your child’s bicycle to make sure those aren’t flat either. The last thing you want is to get stuck with a flat during a ride.

 

See and be seen. Make sure that you or your child are visible to those around you and that everyone is paying attention to their surroundings. A lot of accidents can be avoided if you are aware of what is going on around you and if you are visible to others on the road. Whether it be other bikers or those in vehicles.

 

Avoid riding at night. This is especially important for children. Do not allow your child to ride their bike after sunset if not accompanied by an adult. Make sure that your bicycle is equipped with the proper reflectors at night or a light to signal that you are on the road/sidewalk. Also make sure that you wear something that can be easily seen by others.

 

There are plenty of other tips and precautions that you can take in order to prevent risk of injury. Make sure that you do the proper research in order to get the maximum safety for both you and your family.

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

July 4th: Front Row Fireworks

It’s that time of the year again! Time to bust out those lawn chairs and head out to see the fireworks with the family. You won’t want to miss this event where not only will the 4th of July be celebrated by the community, but you’ll be able to enjoy activities for the family, music, food and more! Come and join us at Evergreen Memorial Historic Cemetery on July 4th for this amazing event! Bring your own lawn chairs, blankets, picnic baskets or feel free to purchase food from the vendors there. Admission is $5 per person and children under two years of age enter for free.

July 6th: Covina Farmers Market & Family Night

July is the perfect month to head down to the Farmers Market. Not only will there be the freshest foods in season, but there will be live entertainment, pony rides and inflatables for kids, artisans and so much more! The market is located at Heritage Park and is open to the public every Friday night from 5PM to 9PM. Head down there with the family or take a stroll on your own and treat yourself. Stop down at some point this month and have a great time. It’s something you won’t want to miss.

July 10th: Business Builder Luncheon

Are you interested in running your own business or maybe you’re a small business owner already. Whether you are or aren’t, this is a chance to expand your business knowledge, share new ideas and connect with the business community. This event will run from 12PM – 1:15PM on the second Tuesday in July. Admission is $16 for members and $21 for non-members and will be held at Casa Moreno. All online reservations are required by 12PM the day before the event, and after-deadline is $25 at the door.

July 13th: E-Waste Recycling Event

It’s time to take out the recycling this month! Head down to Smart and Final for the E-Waste Recycling Event. Plenty of people have old electronics laying around that they don’t know what to do with, well bring them with you. This is a great way to recycle those old computers you have no use for or maybe one of those old printers that you just never bothered to get rid of. Here is your chance to clear out some of the stuff in the attic and help out the community! This event will run from 9AM until 4PM, so head down to Smart & Final Parking lot.

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

June 9th: Summer Charity Wine Walk

Summer is the time of year where you’re taking a break from work and a break from the kids. Maybe you want a chance to get out and enjoy a night by yourself or with your spouse. Heading out to the Summer Charity Wine Walk might be the perfect place for you! You can embark on a wine tasting journey for only $20 per person. Every shop there has a different pair of wines, so make sure that you hit every shop that you can! There’s also other foods including cheese, crackers and even chocolates while accompanied by music and one-day sales! Make sure you head on down there to get a little taste of summer.

June 12th: Business Builder Luncheon

Are you interested in starting your own business? Are you currently the owner of a small business and looking for a bit more knowledge? Then head on down to Casa Moreno for some great food and the opportunity to expand your business knowledge! There are probably some things you already know, but you’ll definitely walk away having learned a few new tips and tricks! The cost is $16 for members and $21 for non members. Online reservations are required by 12PM the day before the event, so be sure to RSVP as soon as possible!

June 20th: 8th Annual Multi-Chamber Mixer

Meet Me in Rio this year at the 8th Annual Multi-Chamber Mixer! There will be live music, lemonade, campus tours and plenty of food for you and the whole family! The great thing about this event is that it’s free and open to the public, so there’s no excuse for you to miss out on this amazing event hosted by the Haynes Family. This event will run on the 20th of June from 5PM-7PM so be sure to book a babysitter or grab the kids and bring them with you! Even if it’s just to try the food, head on out for half an hour, you won’t regret it!

June 21st: Taste of Covina

Food, Drinks, Entertainment and a Silent Auction are some of the few things you can expect when heading out to a Taste of Covina! This is an event for all ages with a little something for everyone. Book the night out on your own or bring a guest! The cost of entry is $25 and will be held from 6PM-9PM at Heritage Plaza. We know you wouldn’t give up the opportunity to let your hair down and unwind from the stressful work week you may have had. So head out on the 21st of June and have yourself some fun!

What’s Happening in Covina This Month?

 

 

 

 

May 5th: Battle at the Brewhouse

 

Are you looking for something exciting to do this Cinco De Mayo? Head down to Alosta Brewing Co. for the release of Macho Ancho and some wrestling on the side! Ticket holders are able to enter at 2PM to grab some tacos and a pint of Macho Ancho to wash it all down! There will be six matches for the evening from various EWF stars, and as an added bonus, the first 50 people to purchase tickets will receive a commemorative Macho Ancho pint glass. Tickets for the even are $25, and a portion of the events proceeds will benefit The Neighborhood Homework House in Azusa, whose mission is to partner with parents of at risk Azusa students to provide the tools to thrive academically and socially.

 

May 6th: Cupcakes and Wine

 

Cupcakes by Leanne and Rev Wines are coming together this May to bring you a spectacular event! Do you enjoy the sweet, mouth-watering taste of cupcakes and the variety of flavors that wine brings to the table? Then this is an event you won’t want to miss. Tickets are $25 and will get you five two-ounce wine pours along with scrumptious cupcake samples, and to top it all off there will be a lecture by the winemaker on proper pairing technique. Spots are limited and tickets will not be sold at the door, so make sure you get yours while you have the chance! You’ll definitely have a reason to w(h)ine if you miss this!

 

May 12th: Strawberry Lemon Marmalade

 

Do you enjoy DIY activities? Then come down to the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden to learn about making shelf stable Strawberry Lemon Marmalade! The class that you take will include a discussion on food preservation and food safety practices, and you will be hands-on throughout the marmalade making process. At the end of this class its participants will receive a recipe along with a jar of marmalade to take home and enjoy on their own. The cost of the class will also include admission to the Arboretum for the day. The cost for this sweet, creative event is only $40. Treat yourself and learn how to create something new this coming May! You deserve it.

 

May 15th: Cusines of the Foothills, Enchantment Under the Sea

 

There are a lot of food-related events this May, but who doesn’t enjoy a good meal? In recent years the Glendora County Club has taken the participants in this event to Paris, Wonderland and Under the Big Top. This year they are planning to take you on a journey under the sea, to the depths of the ocean where there will be an evening filled with live music, delicious food, fine wines, local craft beers and more! You’re sure to enjoy a tasty treat and a whimsical night by attending this event. Pre-sale tickets are $30 and will be available for $40 at the door. You must be 21 and over to attend this event. For more information on Cuisines of the Foothills contact the Glendora Chamber at (626) 963-4128 or visit the Chamber office at 224 N. Glendora Ave. Glendora. See you there!

 

May 25th: 2018 Beer Tasting Series @ Arcadia Golf Course

 

Are you a fan of golfing and a fan of enjoying a good brew every now and again? This might be the event for you. Head down to Arcadia Golf Course on May 25th to enjoy a round of golf, but that’s not the only thing you’ll be able to enjoy during your time there. There will be prizes, dinner, music and so much more! The registration and featured beer tastings will be at 2:30PM and tickets to attend range from $32-$140. Don’t fret if you miss this one, there are plenty of other opportunities to join the festivities throughout the months to come!

 

5 Ways to Plan The Perfect Family Vacation

 

 

Summer is right around the corner, approaching fast and your children are getting ready to have a break from school and maybe you have some unused vacation time that you need to get rid of. If you’re thinking about planning a family vacation then there are likely a few things that you’re worried about along the way. Maybe the weather isn’t looking so great in the days to come, maybe your children are impatient when it comes to car or plane rides, or maybe you’re just not sure where you should go. Here are a few things that you can to to try and make planning your vacation as quick and painless as possible!

 

Pick a family friendly destination. Make sure there’s a little something for everyone when you’re planning your trip. You don’t want to start off by having a good time only to realize that there’s only so much your children can do in order to keep themselves busy. There’s nothing worse than trying to take some time to relax when you have a toddler or teenager constantly at your side because they have nothing they can do. Decide beforehand what you and your family want to do, whether it be outdoor activities, indoor activities or maybe man-made diversions. Then you can select a destination based on the age range of children in your family and combined interests from there. It will not only put your mind at ease, but your family’s minds at ease if they know there will be no down-time for them to be bored.

 

Plan ahead and plot accordingly. While having an adventure with your family can be fun, it can also bring unwanted trouble in the end. Make sure that you figure out what your destination has to offer before heading there. Check the attractions around the area that you and your family plan on spending the most time in so there are no surprises when you arrive. There’s nothing worse than having to hunt for something to do which could take anywhere from minutes to hours depending on whether you think the rest of your family would enjoy them just as much as you would. Not only is it good to know what types of exciting attractions are in the area, but make sure you know what your dining options are before you arrive so that way you and the rest of your family aren’t spending time arguing over whether or not chinese sounds good or if you’d all rather grab some fast food.

 

Rent where possible. There are some things that should be considered a must have for most family vacations, but sometimes the convenience is worth it versus the stress of figuring out solutions for things that went unpacked. Many on-site places will offer rentals that you can grab right at your destination, and while it might be a bit pricier it’s often worth it in the end rather than spending your time hauling accoutrements from one airport to the next.

 

Give kids some space. Children often need just as much time to decompress as we do after a long day, especially if they’ve been sitting in a car for eight hours or sitting on a plane with only small things to keep them occupied. Don’t try to fill your entire vacation with activities, otherwise that’s set up to wear them out rather quickly and you will have to worry about making proper accommodations in order to make sure they have time to regain their energy. Rather than constantly doing activities that require a high amount of energy, try looking for things that are a little more secluded and don’t require as much excitement and stamina. Maybe taking a walk around your destination or spending a quiet afternoon on the beach would be more up their alley. Don’t jam-pack your entire vacation into a tight schedule. Give yourself, and your children, some time to truly relax.

 

Surprise and Delight. While having everything planned out beforehand is a good way to make your vacation go a lot smoother, that doesn’t mean there can’t be any surprises along the way. Try to find attractions that aren’t tourist heavy, places where there aren’t a lot of people that your family or children can enjoy. As parents, you’re always learning things about your child each and every day, try to gauge their interests and see if there’s something around that you hadn’t planned and surprise them with it. Surprise them with an attraction that wasn’t planned, or maybe by taking them to a restaurant with one of their favorite foods. There are always ways to spice up your family vacation and to keep your family engaged.

Protecting Your Home From Flooding

We can’t always prevent flooding from causing damage to our home, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try a bit of preventative maintenance. Of course, having a solid California flood insurance policy is a must.

Here are a few things you can do to lessen the impact of flood waters.

Understand Your Risk

A FEMA Flood map shows the flood zones and boundaries as well as base flood elevations for your area. You simply enter your address to access your map. It shows you whether your property has a minimal, possible, or high risk of flooding. Any building within a 100-year floodplain is at high-risk. However, this map is only your starting point.

Also ask your home insurer for a copy of your property’s C.L.U.E. ® Report. It documents any water-related claims for the property. If this is not available to you, ask your neighbors.

Order a Property Inspection

Professional home inspectors have the training experience you need to properly evaluate your property’s resistance to flood waters.

California law prohibits unethical home inspection practices and using a certified agent from the American Society of Home Inspectors ensures the inspection meets the required standards of care. A professional home inspector can pinpoint areas where water infiltration could be an issue so you can fortify your property.

Elevate HVAC Equipment, Electrical & Hot Water

Typically, you’ll find this equipment in the lowest level of a building. This means it is very susceptible to flood damage. If you live in a minimal risk area building a platform to raise the level might offer sufficient protection from flood waters.

Install a Backwater Valve

If the elevation of the lowest drain on your property is lower than street level, you may need to hire a licensed plumber to install a backwater valve.

A backwater value stops storm water from entering your home when the sewer system reaches capacity after a rainfall. Installation may require a plumbing permit and inspection after installation, but it can prevent extensive damage from street floods after heavy rains.

Regrade the Property

Under normal circumstances a property’s grade can handle rainwater. However, living in flood-prone areas can call for more drastic measures.

Increasing the slope of the property reduces the risk of water intrusion. Digging swales around the perimeter of the building can also direct storm water away. Properties with compacted soil or water puddling near a building foundation require attention during normal rainfall, never mind a deluge.

Clear Gutters, Extend Downspouts, Install a Dry Well

Clean gutter systems carry water off the roof into the yard. However, many people do not perform regular maintenance and they become clogged with debris. Clean the gutters annually to prevent this problem.

Additionally, downspouts may not direct water far enough away from the structure. Extend the downspout so that water flows away from the building and use whatever pipe length you need so it does not weep back towards the foundation.

A dry well is a perforated plastic barrel with an open bottom. It is simple to install and directs large amounts of downspout water through the ground and away from the structure.

Install a Sump Pump & Flood Alarm

Sump pumps switch on automatically when groundwater rises. They can divert thousands of gallons of water away from a structure to prevent water damage.

Installing a sump pump normally requires professionals, since it involves choosing the appropriate pump type for the property, digging holes and burying the discharge line leading to weeping tiles around the perimeter of the building. You may also want a battery-powered backup in case the property loses power.

A flood alarm is very similar to a fire alarm, but for water. They’re relatively inexpensive, automatically emit an audible tone, and can dial emergency numbers.

Buy Flood Insurance

If you live in a high-risk area or your lender demands it, you must buy flood insurance. However, flooding can occur anywhere and up to 25 percent of claims originate in areas outside of high-risk zones. The risk of flooding continues to increase, so it is now recommended coverage for renters, homeowners and businesses, because standard insurance policies do not cover flooding.

Contact your insurance agent. They will check whether you live in a National Flood Insurance Program community and can explain coverage and exclusions to ensure you’re properly protected. Most insurers offer additional coverage if you need it, as NFIP limits may not offer sufficient protection.