Tag Archives: bed
Post by Kyle St. Romain.
Ever thought of operating your very own mini-hotel? It may be easier than you think.
Many of us have an extra bedroom or two in our homes that go unused throughout most of the year. The extra space is certainly nice to have when your family or other guests come to visit, but what about the other 80 percent of the time? What if you could make money from your extra bedroom or guesthouse, all while meeting new travelers along the way.
The idea of renting your second home or extra bedroom to travelers looking for alternative lodging isn’t anything new. I can’t help but think this is how the first Bed & Breakfasts got started. While operating a formal B&B often requires special licensing and permits under state hospitality laws, there are a number of companies that specifically cater to the part-time hotel/landlord market, namely Airbnb (though, there are others like 9flats, HomeAway, and Travelmob — to name a few). However, you should check with your state laws before renting your space, as a New York Judge recently declared that short-term rentals violate its state hospitality laws if the owner isn’t present. Other cities, such as New Orleans, have similar laws.
What is Airbnb?
“Whether you have a spare bedroom, own a second property, have a treehouse, or just want to rent your place and pay for your travels, you can list it on Airbnb.”
In a nutshell, Airbnb is a directory/listing platform that connects homeowners with travelers. In addition to helping you find a guest for your underused space, Airbnb also manages payments and deposits. It even comes with a guarantee, covering you for up to $1,000,000 for loss or damage caused by theft or vandalism.
While it the idea of Airbnb may be a bit too novel for many would-be hotel managers/guests, it’s actually pretty easy. I’ve personally used Airbnb on a number of occasions when visiting cities for a couple days, and have nothing but great things to say about my experiences. Most recently, I used Airbnb to find a cheap apartment to stay at for a wedding trip. Not only did I save hundreds of dollars over staying in a hotel, I also got to experience the city more like a local.
How much do people actually make renting their empty beds? Well, that depends on your home and location. That said, one entrepreneur amassed over $30,000 renting out her bedroom and sofa on Airbnb, which she used as seed money to start a business. That’s way more than I’ve ever found between the sofa cushions!
What would you do with a little extra rental income? Would you ever consider listing your space as a short-term suite? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Post by Alison Hein.
Last Friday I was at my sister’s house, waiting for a washer and dryer delivery. You know the drill, right? An automated message the night before provides a 4-hour delivery window. You completely rearrange your next-day schedule, report for duty at the appropriate time, then twiddle your thumbs for three to four hours. Finally, your truck arrives.
I’m wise to this schtick, so I scouted for something to occupy my wait time. I poked around in Janet’s cabinets, shelves, and refrigerator. In search of?: a project with simple ingredients and a short, hot bake time. My quick inventory yielded the perfect answer – scones!
After searching for cinnamon for 20 minutes, I decided not to use any. Instead, I upped the amount of dark brown sugar to infuse the scones with a deep, caramel sweetness. I like to pre-score my scones before baking, to make them easy to separate without crumbling. A sugar and egg wash crisps the tops, and leaves behind a textured, crystallized taste with each bite.
18 minutes later, I took the bubbling hot scones from the oven, smeared them with lightly salted butter, and with the last of my cooling coffee, I indulged. Still only one hour into my wait time…
Don’t worry, Jan. I only ate one scone. Plenty left for you and your family to have a sleepy Saturday morning and a sugary breakfast in bed.
2¼ cups flour
½ cup dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup (one half stick) cold butter
¾ cup milk
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
Preheat oven to 425°. In large bowl, mix together flour, 6 tablespoons dark brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut butter into small pieces and cut into dry ingredients.
Combine milk, vinegar and one egg in separate small bowl. Mix well, then add all at once to dry ingredients, stirring until just mixed in.
Turn batter out onto lightly floured board. Divide into eight equal pieces and shape into balls. Press each ball into a flat round, and place scones on lightly greased cookie sheet. Cut crosses in the top of each scone, but do not cut all the way through.
Lightly beat remaining egg, and brush on top of scones. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons of dark brown sugar. Place in oven and bake for about 18 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm with butter.
Makes 8 scones.
Post by Kyle St. Romain.
With summer just around the corner, now is a perfect time for a bedroom makeover. And if you’re looking for a fresh new style for your bedroom, consider going bohemian. Bohemian design is a fun and friendly look that exudes creativity and a carefree attitude; just don’t tell anyone how hard you worked to perfect it.
What is Bohemian Style?
The original bohemians lived in the Czech province of Bohemia, which was a center for political, cultural and religious discord. Residents of Bohemia were characterized by their artistic lifestyle, unconventional and outspoken political views, and laid-back attitudes. Today, the term bohemian (“boho” or “boho-chic” for short) is used to describe a casual, creative style for both apparel and interior design.
How To Make Your Bedroom Boho-Chic
Bohemian design is limited only by your creativity. Described as a little eclectic, a little modern, but always vintage, Bohemian design can be the perfect way to create a stress-free haven in your bedroom. Since the bohemian style varies widely, the best way to get a sense of bohemian design is to look at examples. As always, Houzz has an excellent gallery of bohemian bedrooms. There are also a number of other websites dedicated to the look.
Once you have a general sense for the different ways other people have succeeded in designing a boho-chic bedroom, it’s time to connect with your inner artist and get to work. First, you need to decide on a color scheme. While bohemian design can accommodate just about any color palate, it should include a mix of neutral colors like brown and terracotta accented with jewel tones and gold.
Next, you’ll want to think about patterns and textures. Bohemian design is anything but flat, and you’ll use a lot of different patterns, textures, and styles to achieve the look. You don’t really need to plan out the patterns and textures you’ll use ahead of time, just know that more is better when it comes to bohemian design.
On that note: accessorize excessively. Artwork, pictures, thickly framed mirrors, decorative cushions, frilly throw pillows, heavy rustic rugs, eclectic light fixtures, textured window treatments, and airy canopies or baldachins are all part of the bohemian style. Flea markets and vintage stores are both great places to find accessories for your bohemian bedroom.
Finally, and most importantly: have fun. Bohemian is all about being carefree and whimsical. It’s about doing what makes you happy — a hodgepodge of everything that’s you. Don’t worry if you think you’re overdoing it, or whether a piece of furniture you like will “work” in your bohemian room. If you like it, chances are it will.
Ryan Saghian over at Haute Design Network came up with a boho-chic recipe that can serve as a useful guide if you’re still wondering how to create the look in your own space.
So what do you think: Is boho-chic for you? What do you think the most important elements of bohemian design are? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Post by Stephanie Noble.
One of the best parts of being a toddler’s parent is that something new happens every day. Most days those new things are positive: discovering fire engines, going new places, and meeting new people.
Until one day the new things are dialing 911, riding in an ambulance to the hospital and meeting ER pediatric staff. Then there is nothing but fear of what –ifs, lack of sleep worries and watching for glimpses of normal.
Sometimes, the most important part of decorating a room is making sure it’s a good place to be sick and recover. Aesthetics are pushed out the door by necessity and comfort.
Here are four things to have around to make a sick room comfy cozy.
I recommend the menthol ones. Not only do they do a great job of cleaning up a snotty nose, but they smell awesome and do a great job opening up the sinuses. And after catching my son sucking on clean wipes and saying, “Tasty,” I’m glad they are alcohol free. (And yes, they are pretty minty tasting.)
A blankie, not just a random blanket from the linen closet, but the blanket that brings the patient the most comfort. My mom made quilts for my siblings and me one Christmas. Mine is a tattered yellow mess with batting hanging out of it. But it’s the one I pull out when I’m sick and want to wrap up in something soft and warm. My brother does the same thing and says it’s like being “wrapped up in your Mama’s love.”
Comfort movies. I watch the BBC Pride and Prejudice when I’m sick, the familiar words and beautiful scenery lulls me to sleep. I’ve seen it so many times that I don’t feel badly when I fall asleep and miss and entire disc. I can wake up and pick up from wherever the story is in progress. For my son, that movie is Cars. My husband and I are no completely prepared to enter any Car’s related trivia contest. We even looked up what the Ferrari says in Italian to Guido. Losing oneself in another world temporarily can take one’s mind off feeling miserable.
Comfort food. I have made stacks of pancakes in the past week because it’s the only thing that my son would eat. I found out a friend’s choice is mashed potatoes with cheese. Another friend’s is homemade biscuits with butter and honey. My husband’s comfort food is Indian food, as spicy as he can get it. Whatever it is that appeals to your taste buds is better than not eating and getting sicker.
Thankfully, our home is now in the recovery stage. I’ve noticed that there are dishes to be done, laundry to fold, flowers to plant and some airing out to do.
Cars has been replaced by Curious George and Fireman Sam. Ham and cheese omelets were dinner last night. And the blankie has been washed.
Most importantly, our son was laughing, dancing and a bit bossy this morning. Things are getting back to normal.
Post by Mark T. Locker.
Doctor Who: the visual by DK Publishing.
As always, the books I am exposed to are strictly at the mercy of my child’s whims. I feel pretty lucky, then, that my boy has pretty good taste. I have never been forced to recount those Disney stories, like Cars or anything about the dread purple shall-not-be-named dinosaur.
Thanks to my impulse purchase of a couple little Doctor Who figurines, my kid has developed a fascination by this newly trendy BBC science fiction. Unfortunately for him, this insanely awesome, flashy, full of weird monsters and robots and aliens show is TOTALLY inappropriate for a four-year-old. The old enemy of the Doctor, those weird metallic creatures, the Daleks, (one of the figurines I got was a Dalek) are cool looking and murderous. I can’t show him alien robots killing dozens of people!
To appease him, I tracked down a song from the 80’s about Doctor Who, and picked up this visual dictionary from the library. For hardcore nerds, this might be insufficient information; it mostly focuses on the last couple seasons of the series. For normal people, this visual dictionary, full of big full-color photos and brief descriptions of just about every aspect of the show, is fun to look at and far less scary for a kid than the show. And he gets to walk around shouting, “EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE!” without being exposed to actual human extermination.