5 Tips for Protecting Your Outdoor Space in the Offseason

Regardless of the climate you live in, protecting your patio furnishings and accessories during the colder months is crucial to maintaining a beautiful and functional outdoor living space. Protective outdoor covers can help defend against snow, sleet, wind, sun and rain, which can damage your outdoor essentials and cause them to deteriorate over time.

Consider these five ways to help ensure your outdoor space is protected from whatever weather may come your way:

Protect patio pieces – Investing in high-quality covers can help keep your outdoor furniture pieces functional for years. Look for covers that feature durable fabrics and details like adjustable straps and cord-lock closures for a quick, custom-like fit. To keep water from pooling and seeping into cushions and furnishings, use inflatable airbags to elevate covers and help repel rain, snow and debris.

Keep debris out of your AC – Air conditioning units are built to withstand rain and snow, but not to keep out debris or pests. Select a full cover with air vents to reduce inside condensation, as moisture buildup can freeze the condenser coils or create mold, causing damage over time. If you live in a milder climate and your unit is beneath trees, consider a mesh-top cover to protect your air conditioner from falling sticks and leaves.

Safeguard the grill – Whether you’re putting the grill away for the season or gearing up for winter cookouts, be sure to cover your grill when it’s not in use to help prevent rust and damage. Eliminate the hassles commonly associated with grill covers with an option like the Storigami Easy Fold BBQ Grill Cover, which folds twice as fast as standard covers and takes up one-quarter of the space when stored. Featuring looped, easy-to-grip handles and directional guide arrows to simplify the folding process, the collection allows you to continuously cover and uncover your grill whenever you want to fire it up.

Shield firewood from wind and water –If you use wood to heat your home, keep your logs burn-ready by storing them properly. Take time to stack logs neatly for proper airflow at least 20 feet from your house to prevent bugs from getting inside. Use a rack to keep the stack a few inches off the ground to protect the wood from moisture and insects. Then shield logs with a water-resistant cover with air vents that help reduce wind lofting and condensation.

Simplify storage – Streamline seasonal transitions with functional and flexible storage containers. For example, the Classic Accessories Ravenna Deck Box is a weatherproof storage solution for pool toys, gardening tools, cushions and other outdoor items. Available in three sizes, the series combines capacity with durable construction and fade-resistant materials designed to stand up to the great outdoors. These lightweight units can be easily repositioned or taken apart for convenient offseason storage.

Find more ideas for protecting your outdoor equipment at classicaccessories.com. (Family Features)

SOURCE:
Classic Accessories

Be Prepared When Natural Disaster Strikes

Emergency situations, especially those that pertain to natural disasters, can be difficult to recover from without proper planning, which is why it’s important to take small steps from the start to help protect your family.

With the change of seasons comes an increased risk of weather-related emergencies. This fall, Clorox has partnered with the American Red Cross to encourage everyone to be “Red Cross Ready.”

Consider these three actionable steps to get your household ready for an emergency:

Prepare a kit: At minimum, you should have an emergency kit assembled with basic supplies. Depending on the circumstances, you may need to evacuate versus remaining in your home, which will affect the amount of supplies you need. A good rule of thumb is a three-day supply if you are evacuating and a two-week supply if you’ll be in your home.

  • Water: Keep one gallon per person, per day
  • Food: Stock up on non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items.
  • Disinfecting bleach: After a natural disaster, water may not be safe to drink. A few drops of an option like Clorox Disinfecting Bleach can be used to make water potable and can also help clean up mold and fungi from a buildup of excess moisture. Always pay close attention to the label to be sure you are following exact dilution instructions.
  • Flashlight (and extra batteries): Having a flashlight ensures that you’re able to navigate in the dark if the electricity goes out. Always keep extra batteries on-hand to power your flashlight and other items you may need.
  • First aid kit: In cases of emergency, first-aid supplies are crucial to help keep family members as safe and healthy as possible. Make sure to stock the kit with things like bandages, gauze and antibiotic creams.
  • Multi-purpose tool: Tools with multiple functions can be used for everything from cutting wire to opening bottles.
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items: In addition to disinfecting bleach, it’s important to keep things like moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal cleanliness.

Make a plan: Discuss how to prepare with your family or household members and talk about the best ways you can respond to the types of emergencies that are most likely to happen where you live, learn, work and play. Identify responsibilities for each member of your household and how you will work together as a team. Practice as many elements of your plan as possible.

Be informed: As an emergency is unfolding, normal communication systems like phone lines may be damaged or overloaded by call volume. Consider downloading smartphone apps such as the Red Cross Emergency App for customizable weather alerts, the “I’m safe”feature and other resources. It provides instant access to information for handling common first aid emergencies. You can also get trained in first aid and CPR so you’ll know what to do in case emergency help is delayed.

After a natural disaster, a safe and healthy recovery is key. Listen to local authorities and take safety precautions in case of storm aftershocks. Only use cellular or landline phones to report life-threatening conditions, keeping lines open for emergency responders. Return to your home only when authorities advise it’s safe to do so, making sure to also have photo identification to prove residency.

Learn more at clorox.com/redcrossready. (Family Features)

SOURCE:
Clorox

Welcome to the 4th Anniversary Edition of Teen InFluential!

Happy 4th Anniversary to our multi-award winning sister publication dedicated to our teen audience, Teen InFluential!

The 4th Anniversary edition features the talented Penelope Robin on the cover complemented by an Exclusive Interview with Penelope which we’re eager for you to read.

TEEN YO.indd

Thank you, our readers, for the consistent support you give to each of our multi-award winning publications.  We hope we’ve continued to inform and inspire!

Visit our InFluential Magazine Family’s official page at www.influential-magazine.com.

7 Ways to Make Your Kitchen a More Personal Space

Written by Kevin Jefferson

Every kitchen needs to have some basic elements such as cabinets, sink, fridge, appliances, etc. and together with the necessity to boost functionality, adding a personal touch to this room can end up being a proper challenge. However, there’s always a way to make your kitchen more personal without making a mess. In case you’re interested in a personal kitchen makeover, the following ideas might come in handy.

1. Play with Colours

There are many ways you could utilise colours in your kitchen to leave traces of your personality and style. For starters, the shades you choose for your walls can make a lot of difference. In case you’re keen on keeping the main elements neutral, you can brighten up the space with vibrant chairs, cabinet hardware, cloths and towels, etc. In case you have a tile backsplash, adding patterned tiles randomly is a great decorative trick. For those of you looking for an impactful and effective yet budget-friendly backsplash solution, you can always go with waterproof vinyl wallpaper.

2. Interesting Lighting Solution

If you find it difficult to spot areas in your kitchen that have more room for personal décor, turn to your lighting. There are so many shade and cover options available on the market these days that you can turn your ordinary kitchen light fixture into a truly amazing and personal statement piece. Obviously, depending on what you want, you can make your lights stand out more or less, but still add a proper personal touch to this room.

3. The Cabinet Design

In case you find your kitchen cabinets a tad boring, you can always transform them, and your kitchen in the process, into something that truly fits your style and personality. The obvious answer is repainting them, but there’s so much more that you could do. Decoupage technique can turn out to be the ultimate makeover solution. You can also opt for an antique furniture DIY. Both of these are great for a more vintage or shabby chic look. With a self-adhesive vinyl wallpaper, you can give a completely new look to your countertops, as well. And if you feel really creative, you can draw or use stencils to add the more personal touch to your cabinetry.

4. Spice Up Your Storage

If you fancy the look of open shelves, you probably keep your spices and teas on there as well. But even if you don’t, you can start by introducing interesting containers such as jars and other personalised boxes where you would keep teas, spices, coffee, etc. instead in their usual cardboard packaging. Transparent jars are definitely the most popular trend but you can also get fully customised ceramic and plastic containers that already have an interesting design.

5. Add Art to Your Kitchen Walls

For those of you lucky enough to have free wall space, gallery walls would be the perfect addition to your kitchen. You can pretty much choose anything you want – and you definitely don’t have to stick to the typical kitchen wall art unless you want to. The eclectic style achieved with different style frames and art in general with regards to the setting is one of the most prominent and unique design ideas that has been trending lately.

6. Feel Free to Mix the Textures

If you wish to introduce more warmth to your kitchen area, mixing the textures is a great idea. The easy way out is to add decorative table cloths, chair cushions and curtains. But, if you don’t mind going all out, you can achieve a truly amazing and personal look by mixing metal, wood, tile, granite and even brick. And since it’s very important to have a functional smoke alarm and top-quality fire ducts for safety reasons, this particular trend can help you make these plain amenities more balanced and minimise the cold and impersonal vibe they tend to give off.

7. Bring in the Statement Piece

There are many items that can end up being your kitchen’s statement piece thus allowing you to add your own personal touch. Actually, statement pieces are especially great for smaller kitchens where you don’t have a lot of room to express your creativity. This can be a really unique DIY for your accent lighting cover but also an interesting piece of furniture such as a dining table if you keep one in your kitchen. Essentially, even a DIY mosaic for the window (you can use small stones and/or coloured glass pieces with glue) in your kitchen can look absolutely amazing and help you create the personal focal point for this room.

As you can see, it’s more than possible to personalise your kitchen space without having to clutter things up. However, it’s important to decide what creative addition you’re going to choose before doing anything else. After all, planning in advance will allow you to make the most out of your particular kitchen, its layout, and its size.

About Kevin Jefferson

Kevin Jefferson

Kevin Jefferson

Kevin has gone through an extensive home renovation with his son, which he has both thoroughly enjoyed, and dreaded every morning. He is now the proud owner of half his dream house (the other half has been waiting for spring). You can read more of Kevin’s work at PlainHelp.

Welcome to the July / August 2019 Edition of the Multi-Award Winning InFluential Magazine: Be on the Winning Side

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree, Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree, Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

Greetings InFluential Family & Friends:

I hope sincerely your summer has been prosperous and fulfilling.

I enjoy reading very much and take as many opportunities as possible to do just that.  Whether it be for entertainment or education, to my mind, reading is a fundamental key to living my best life.

It’s my hope your reading menu includes InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential.  With every edition, we strive to bring you rich and inviting editorials sure to complement as you strive to live your best life.

My awesome team and I are thrilled to bring to you our Exclusive Interview with Judge Tanya Acker of the hit television show Hot Bench.   She’s an insightful and very intriguing woman and we’re glad to share with you her story.

Skincare guru June Jacobs is another Exclusive Interview we share in this edition and her story is one of struggle and subsequently success and we’re thrilled to bring it to you.

All in all, we’ve done our best to bring you all things “Dedicated to the Art of Living Well”.

We wish the best and look forward to spending time with you throughout the summer and the remainder of the year.

Fondly,

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree

Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

Be on the Winning Side with the July – August 2019 Edition of InFluential Magazine

We’re thrilled to invite you into the world of the July – August 2019 Edition of InFluential Magazine.  This edition is chocked full of awesome articles and exclusive interviews including one with Judge Tanya Acker of television’s successful Hot Bench.

Be sure to connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

Visit us at www.influential-magazine.com.

Free Drinks for Dad! – Celebrate Father’s Day at Stephen F. Austin Hotel

Father’s Day is quickly approaching, and this year, the Intercontinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel is offering the perfect way to celebrate right here in Austin, TX. Stephen F. Austin’s Terrace Bar will be offering a complimentary Stephen F. Old Fashioned or a Texas Draught Beer with the purchase of any entree or sandwich for dads all day!

Located in the heart of Downtown Austin, Stephen F.’s Bar and Terrace has one of the best patios in town, complete with refreshing cocktails, bites and the most incredible view of Congress Avenue, the State Capitol, and the historic Paramount Theatre. It’s the perfect setting for the Dad that loves the city of Austin.

Old Fashioned

Old Fashioned

Stephen F.’s Bar and Terrace offers a delicious menu of truly Texas snacks the whole family can enjoy, including a Black Angus Texas Burger, Brisket Quesadillas, Steak Frites and much more. The extensive bar menu features timeless cocktails, local Texas draught beers and bottomless champagne cocktails and bloody mary’s for only $18.00 a person, for everyone to celebrate.

Welcome to the May / June Edition of InFluential Magazine

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree
Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

Looking back and going forward, with time to reflect during the summer, InFluential Magazine embraces it’s seven-year history and is excited about the future of the Magazine.

We’re thrilled about this Edition because we explore the fascinating theme, What Would Happiness Look Like to You?.  If you yearn for more excitement in your life and enjoy the benefits of living on the edge, we provide several useful tips on how to do just that.  As the weather is warmer and sunny days last much longer, many will plan to enjoy the thrill of the grill, as cooking outdoors is very much a part of a memorable summer.  Whatever it takes to ensure you enjoy a more fulfilling life we hope you know, will stay the course, and help others to do the same.

Finally, know we’re listening as we continue to improve your Magazine. Feedback we receive from you and awards received from our constituency reveal suggestions and praise, but most importantly, your feedback tells us you believe the Magazine strengthens your connection with The Art of Living Well.  Thank you for your valued feedback. We welcome your continued comments and story ideas at info@influential-magazine.com. 

As I always say, thank you to my talented international team for sharing your amazing talent. And, many thanks to you, our readers, for your support. Please subscribe, if you have not, share our magazines with friends, and above all, keep reading.

Appreciatively, 

William Jackson, MBA, GQ Insider, 2018 Folio: 100 Honoree

Founder & Chief Business Officer of InFluential Magazine, Spanish InFluential, and Teen InFluential

Save Your Way to Lower Home Insurance

If your homeowner insurance rates are creeping up even though you haven’t filed any claims, it may be time to take a look at how you can bring those prices back down.

Research, smart shopping and even some home upgrades can make a noticeable difference in your insurance premiums. Explore the cost-savings potential with these tips from the experts at CertainTeed, a leading manufacturer of exterior and interior building products:

Shop for the best rates. It’s easy to be complacent when you’ve used the same insurance company for years, but if getting the best rate is your objective, it’s a good idea to shop around. To do effective comparison shopping, have a copy of your current policy ready and contact a handful of competitors. Provide them the exact same coverage details so you can compare like rates, but also be ready to listen to information about additional coverage options that may suit your needs.

Combine homeowner insurance with other policies. Most insurance carriers offer multiple policy discounts, which they apply when you insure more than one item. For example, if your homeowner insurance carrier also insures your cars, you’re likely to save money on the rates for protecting both your home and automobiles.

Update your home’s first line of defense. Many homeowners focus on aesthetics when it’s time to make upgrades, but there are some important functional improvements that can make a difference when it comes to your insurance premiums. For example, as extreme weather becomes more commonplace, the first line of defense is often the type of roofing material chosen. Many insurance companies even offer discounts for using impact-resistant shingles. Check with your insurance provider before making a final selection, but in general, look for products that include “impact-resistant” in their name and specs, and “Class IV Impact Resistance,” the highest rating available for roofing materials.

For example, NorthGate Class IV impact-resistant shingles from CertainTeed are engineered to have a higher probability of resisting hail. These shingles are made using rubber-like polymers that offer flexibility and impact resistance, as well as crack and shrink resistance, even in cold weather. So when severe weather strikes, your home can be protected and stay looking good.

Install a home security system. An intruder alarm can provide more than peace of mind. Insurance companies often reward homeowners who take steps to minimize the chances of burglary or vandalism. After all, a well-protected home is less likely to result in a claim for losses. Some companies offer varying degrees of discounts on insurance rates depending on the type of system you install, so be sure to thoroughly research the options. For example, a system that simply emits a loud noise when triggered may generate one level of discount, while a system that dispatches emergency personnel when activated can lead to an even better rate.

Insurance rates are one place to save money on your home costs. Learn more about impact-resistant shingles and how they can save your home and wallet at certainteed.com. (Family Features)

SOURCE:
CertainTeed