Living Around a Fireplace InstallationLiving Around a Fireplace Installation

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Living Around a Fireplace Installation

I happen to know a thing or two about living in a home while a new fireplace is being installed. It takes some time for the process to be completed, and the inconvenience can feel pretty intense, but there are tips and tricks you can use to make the process easier on the entire family – like turn a bedroom into the living room (if the living room is where your new fireplace is going, of course) when the construction gets a little loud. In the fifty years that I've lived in this home, I have experienced my fair share of home improvement projects. I decided that maybe some of my experience can help others who are looking to complete their own projects, like installing a new fireplace. Enjoy!

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3 Ways To Breathe New Life Into A Tired, Old Kitchen

Have you been contemplating a total overhaul to your kitchen? Whether you'd like to try a few refreshing upgrades or go for a complete kitchen remodel, there are so many ways to transform a timeworn kitchen into a modernized treasure. To help inspire you, here are a few remodeling ideas to ponder right now:

1. Protect Your Kitchen Walls and Make a Splash

A backsplash will protect your walls from moisture damage and grease splashes. Installing a new backsplash behind your kitchen sink can be more than practical, it can also enhance the appearance of your kitchen. The idea is to choose a material that is relatively low maintenance and functional, yet attractive and room-enhancing at the same time. Ideally, your backsplash should run from the area behind the sink to just above the stove.

What are your choices for backsplash materials? You have many options, and here are just a few for your consideration:

  • Peel-and-stick: This is the way to go if you want to save time, effort and possibly some money in the process. You can purchase the stick-on variety at your local home improvement center. These are made from a composite vinyl material and generally will wipe clean easily. Find them in mosaic patterns, cross-hatch, or even a simulated polished steel. Simply choose a style and color that complements your existing kitchen decor. Peel-and-stick backsplashes are very inexpensive and easy to install. They do not require the use of tools. You'll find they come prefabricated with grout, and you may even install them over your existing tile.

  • Stained Glass, Marble or Ceramic Tile: With a look of elegance and timeless charm, a glass or ceramic tile backsplash may be available in various neutral colors to match your decor. Consider mosaic designs or geometric patterns. This material is easy to clean as well.

  • Magnetic Metal Tiles: Although you may think of a metal backsplash as being suitable for an industrial or commercial kitchen, these have become favored by many home owners as well. If the metal happens to be magnetic, you may attach utensils over your sink or stove for convenience.

2. Bring the Outdoors Inside With a Bright New Garden Window

What is a garden window? Simply put, a garden window replaces an ordinary kitchen window and performs a function. A garden window projects outward from the wall and is typically box-shaped and enclosed, enabling you to grow fruits, vegetables and fresh garden herbs inside your kitchen. It's almost like a miniature greenhouse.

If you prefer, simply place small houseplants on your garden window and enjoy the beauty. The ideal location to install a garden window is a spot that receives plenty of natural sunlight. Your garden window frame may be constructed of aluminum or vinyl and you'll find various styles that are prefabricated. Vinyl is a good choice, as it won't crack, peel, chip or warp. If you're a novice, contact a professional to install the window for you.

3. Illuminate Your Kitchen With Modern Recessed Lighting

A beautiful way to brighten up a dull kitchen is to change the lighting. Recessed lighting, sometimes called down lights or canister (can) lighting, will be installed in a small recess in the ceiling. It has a very modern appeal and is ideal when above a kitchen island, stove, or anywhere extra light is preferred.

The actual fixture of the recessed lamp is known as the housing. If your kitchen ceiling is sloped, you may choose the sloped-ceiling style of housing. The only part of the lighting that will be visible will be the trim, giving your kitchen a clean look. It's a good idea to install the recessed lamps (bulbs) several feet apart for the best results. You may purchase a recessed lighting kit and make it a do-it-yourself project if you are so inclined.

As a final thought, always use common sense when remodeling your home. Be careful to avoid exposed wires, and don't leave heavy equipment or power tools within the reach of children. Make your remodeling project a safe experience for yourself and your family.

For professional tips, check out websites like