Tips to build an outdoor fireplace

April 21, 2013  //  Posted by: cooldude  //  Category: Home Improvement

build an outdoor fireplaceIf you are planning for some unique decoration for your house, then building an outdoor fireplace is the perfect thing for you. The first thing you should look for is a perfect place for building the fireplace. You should also get required permission from the civic authority before you build up the outdoor fireplace. Keep it in mind that you build the fireplace at such a place which is away from home, garden and especially from some combustible things.

You should start by building a proper platform for the fireplace. You can use concrete blocks to set up platform for the fireplace. Make sure that you build a proper chimney which is built as high as possible to increase the release the smoke as high as possible. Keep the firebox as much lower as possible so that there is little effect of wind on the fire. Once you are done with the construction, test the fireplace to check its effectiveness and to find out if any other renovation is required.

Maintaining a stone floor in your home

April 16, 2013  //  Posted by: cooldude  //  Category: Home Care

stone floor, home careIt is required to take care of your stone floor in your home even though stone floors are hard and strong. It is not very difficult to take care of your stone flooring. You just need to be a little cautious and put attention to details.

Dust mats should be put on both the sides of the door. This will prevent your floor from scratches to some extent. Along with that it will keep the dirt away from the floor. Spills occur pretty often at home. Cleaning it up immediately will block the spills entering into the floor and will also keep your floor away from getting stained. Cleaning the floor deep will keep it clean. But, it should be kept in mind that deep cleaning should not be done very frequently. It is to be carried out only once or twice in one year.

Home Baking: How to Make Cooking With Kids More Fun

April 02, 2013  //  Posted by: House Xpert  //  Category: Kitchen Design & Ware

bread bakingApparently certain reality TV shows have made baking ‘the new rock ‘n’ roll’. We’re not sure about that, but baking has always been a great way to have fun and get kids involved in the kitchen. It’s relatively simple, with ways to involve even the littlest hands and what’s more, the results are delicious – at least most of the time.

Even if you have a baking disaster, don’t let that put you off. Your cookies and cakes don’t have to be an image of perfection, as long as you have fun making them. Here are our tips to do just that:

Cookies

Most kids love cookies and they’re relatively easy to make. You can use a variety of different ingredients and flavours and also choose whatever size and shape you want. Cookie cutters are a fun way to customise biscuits, or you can help kids cut their own shapes with a knife, for ultimate individuality.

Bread

Many beginners and even more experienced cooks find the idea of baking their own bread daunting. It’s often easier than people think however and bread makers at the Co-operative can make the process even more manageable. Kids can help mix and knead the dough if you’re baking in the oven, or can help layer the ingredients into a bread maker, if you’re using these handy appliances.

Cakes

From buns to fruit loafs and gooey chocolate cakes, there are a host of options here. A fancy gateau might be a little beyond most little bakers, but kids can always help with the mixing and measuring, even if the end result is a little advanced. Cakes offer a lot of family fun, both to bake and to eat.

Cereal cakes

Cereal cakes such as corn flakes and crisped rice are perennial favourites and incredibly simple to make. The chocolate versions remain the most popular, but try syrup or honey cereal cakes for a chewy, delicious alternative.

Decorating

Whether you’ve made cakes, cookies or anything else that can be decorated, this is often the most fun stage. You can use a variety of edible ingredients including different colours of icing, individual sweets or pieces of fruit, for a healthier alternative.

You could offer suggestions and assistance for little ones who are a little unsure of what they want to do, but otherwise, this is a great opportunity to let their creative juices flow and allow their imagination to run wild.