The Many Reasons Log Cabins Are The Best

You may have heard that log cabins are really trending this year. They have been popular in the past, but never before has interest seemed to have reached such a peak. Maybe it is a backlash against the modern day McMansions and identical townhouses that are popping up all over the place. Or it could…

You may have heard that log cabins are really trending this year. They have been popular in the past, but never before has interest seemed to have reached such a peak. Maybe it is a backlash against the modern day McMansions and identical townhouses that are popping up all over the place. Or it could be people thinking longer term than retirement, considering generational aspects of moving down property to their family.

Whatever the case, it has never been a better time to get a log cabin. But there are many reasons that they are awesome … here are some reasons to consider getting your own.

They Are Real Estate Candy

The real estate market has never fully recovered from the bubble of a decade ago. But you can get around some of the more problematic aspects of the market by looking for the darlings of that world. Log cabins are a stable investment because everyone loves them. If you did have to sell you could have pretty much guaranteed interested buyers.

Just look at the asking prices for already existing listings out there. You can be sure that the people who originally purchased them paid far less than they are asking for now.

Log Cabins Tend to Increase In Value

Speaking of which, value is a big part of property ownership. Most homes depreciate pretty much the moment you take over the keys. You have to do upgrades, maintenance or readily on vicinity expansion or improvements in order to see an increase in property value.

Unless you have a log cabin. These are real earners on the market, probably due to the fact that they are sturdier than the average home. When you buy a wooden house you expect it to be a long term investment that can be inherited by others down the line.

Wooden Structures Look Awesome

Just the aesthetic reasons are enough for many people to want a log cabin. The richness of the wood, the way you can change the style based on your specifications, the versatility of the materials … it is all a pretty great trade off when compared to the less pleasing look of other modern homes.

Let's say you want something that looks like an old fashioned log cabin. You can build one using recycled wood that has a feel of an old timey cabin out in the woods. Or sometimes you prefer something more modern and chic. That is totally within the realm of possibility.

Wood Trumps Other Building Materials

There are some reasons that wood is a better material for building than most. For one thing, it looks great, as was said earlier in this post. But it is also more versatile, breathable and easy to work with. It is highly durable and tough, resisting extreme weather conditions. It can be sealed to trap in heat or cool air. There are many decay resistant lumber options that are easier to maintain and keep healthy.

In the end, it is the number one building material out there. Is it any wonder people have used it for so long?

Maintenance Gives You a Sense of Pride

Some people are resistant to the idea of ​​log cabins because they know they have to be maintained. That is true, you do have to take care of the wood. But anyone who has had a wooden house will tell you that they feel a real sense of pride in the work they do to keep it in tip top condition.

Luckily, it is not hard to maintain a log cabin. Every three to five years you will restain the wood to seal it. This protects it from rot, warping, cracks and wind or sun bleaching that can occur.

It Is Catnip For The House Proud

Just imagine having a gorgeous, well maintained log cabin that is your dream home. How does it make you feel when people visit? Probably pretty good. If you tend to be house proud you are going to be especially so with one of these beautiful dwellings in your possession. Just sitting in front of the fire on a cold winter day with friends or family is such a comforting image that can fill you with warmth.

If you want a house to be proud to show off, a log cabin is the way to go.

There Are So Many Styles to Choose From

You can have literal anything in your cabin. There are so many different options and models to enjoy, so many upgrades and customizations. For instance, tiny houses and mini log cabins are becoming a seriously popular option for people who were to utilize space and reduce the impact they have on the environment around them. Large scale cabins that are similar to lodges are another.

With so many homes that look exactly the same, it is nice to know you can customize things to be the way you want them.

You Can Customize or Prefabricate

So you know you can customize. But what if you do not want to? There are prefabricated log cabins that are a better option for people who want more basic styles. But there is more to it than the design: these are cheaper and faster to erect, as well.

A prefabricated cabin is one that has been created in a factory in large pieces. These are then shipped to the building location and the crew working on it will put it up bit by bit. Everything is packaged together and it can be put up within a couple of weeks.

Pricing Is Within Your Control

You can work a log cabin in to any budget. Depending on your specifications, whether it is custom or prefabricated, how big it is and the features you select, your new home can cost as little or as much as you can pay. This budget versatility is yet another reason that so many people are choosing wooden homes over the status quo.

Is not it time you bought your own log cabin?

Tips for Your Potted Plants to Enjoy Summer

Doing your bit for green cover is not just a catch phrase any more. Home gardening has come a long way from being a post-retirement hobby to an essential daily chore for the usual office-going crowd. The easiest way to contribute to the environment is to probably grow as many potted plants in your balcony…

Doing your bit for green cover is not just a catch phrase any more. Home gardening has come a long way from being a post-retirement hobby to an essential daily chore for the usual office-going crowd. The easiest way to contribute to the environment is to probably grow as many potted plants in your balcony / porch as possible. However, taking care of potted plants is no easy task. Constant monitoring is key to a lively garden. Of several issues that might crop up for a home gardener, one is how to ensure the plants are able to sustain during the scorching summer season. In many parts of the world, especially regions with tropical climate, temperatures may soar beyond 40 degrees Celsius, which is hard for humans and plants alike. Fortunately, there are a few simple tips that might help you ensure the greenery of your balcony is retained through these temperatures.

Choose your plants carefully

Similar to the concept of crop-rotation in agriculture, even potted plants need to be rotated. Knowing which plants to keep growing in summer can save you a lot of heartache from when a non-adapting plant dies of over-heat. Choose plants that are hardy by nature. Do your own research rather than relying on the version of your local nursery keeper. Some examples of hardy summer plants could be cactus, summer vegetable plants (cucumber, onions, tomatoes, chillies, pumpkin, to name a few), summer flowering plants (hibiscus, lilies, petunia, jasmine, and so on), non-flowering plants with light green or whitish leaves, any other plant that looks hardy. Be sure to plant less number of flowering plants as compared to non-flowering plants, because flowering plants in general require more care regardless of the season.

Water Judiciously

Although it is quite a no-brainer that plants need to be tailed regularly and prudently, it is surprising to find how many home gardeners get it wrong. Watering is not enough, it is important to use just the right amount and the right way to administrator it. In peak summer, constant monitoring is important, because most plants would need to be tailed twice a day, once in the morning, and once in the evening. Although the morning water is an absolute necessity, the need for watering in the evening may vary depending on the hardiness of the plant. Some plants just seem to soak up all the water you can give, while others do fine with a bit less. The key is to monitor the top of the soil for dryness and cracks. If the soil is dry, add just as much water as is needed for the surface to be wet again. If it is cracked, water a bit more deeply, because you should have ideally watered it before the cracks began to appear. Along with the soil, it is also essential to sprinkle water on the leaves every other day or so, to make up for the complete loss of rainfall.

Fertilizers

Potted plants need regular help with fertilizers in all seasons, and the summer season demands the most. It does not mean that you need to increase the frequency of supplementing with fertilizers, it just means that you need to strictly maintain your fertilizing routine without a miss. Unlike during the monsoon season, when plenty of rain ensures high frequency of fertilizers is not essential (although it does not harm), during summer, all your plants have to hold on to for nutrition are the fertilizers.

Other tips for summer gardening include providing as much shade to your plants as possible, by moving the plants around, remaining alert for pests, and regularly using chemical-free medicines in order to avoid them, and last of all, loving your plants, and spending time with them. Yes, they can feel it!

These Clay Cooking Pots Cook Non-Toxic, Nutritious Food & Are 100% Green

Food is a joy and a pleasure enjoyed by every person who has come into this planet. The people of different cultures, regions, races have always enjoyed cooking and eating from time immemorial. The interesting part is the significance of food does not end there … it is the one thing that strengthens and sustains…

Food is a joy and a pleasure enjoyed by every person who has come into this planet. The people of different cultures, regions, races have always enjoyed cooking and eating from time immemorial. The interesting part is the significance of food does not end there … it is the one thing that strengthens and sustains life inside of us more than anything else. And is also one of the most important factors that determine our health. Amongst the different pots and pans available today, the best ones that fully cater to all these 3 aspects of food are clay cooking pots – they preserve the taste, nutritional value, and health of the food. To understand these benefits, we need to compare them to what is commonly used now and the difference clay cooking pots can make in each case:

Conventional Cookware, why is it toxic and unhealthy?

Most conventional cookware these days are made from either metals or chemical laden clay called ceramics. All metals are reactive including cast iron, steel, aluminum, titanium, they leach metal ions at cooking temperature that react with food's nutrients and form toxic compounds – they are of no nutritional value in the body and keep accumulating in blood, tissues, and organs to form the foundation for a sick body and weak immune system. The ceramic pots are full of chemicals that contain metal compounds that leach metal ions like metals do. On the contrary, the right clay pot would be 100% non-toxic as the raw material is naturally inert and does not leach. It will keep the nutrients in food intact.

How do they interact with the nutrients in the food?

The harsh heat from the walls of metals and ceramics destroy essential delicate nutrients like complex carbs, phytonutrients, and vitamins. The water-soluble nutrients present as steam is constantly leaving the pot. This leaves your food nutritionally deficient in more than one way.

How are clay cooking pots different?

With clay cookware, however, the gentle heat cooks food just the way it needs to be – no nutrients are lost and the natural taste and aroma of food stay intact. Most importantly, the steam can be managed well in an ergonomically designed clay pot – all thanks to unique far infrared heat that keeps the lid at a lower temperature than the rest of the pot. So the steam condenses on the inner surface of the lid and keeps falling back into food while cooking. This not only improves the nutritional value of your food but it also makes it taste better!

How to choose the right clay cooking pots for you?

The food cooked in clay pot is a lot healthier than in metal or ceramic pots – with absolutely no toxins and improved nutritional value. But it is extremely important to choose the right clay pot because the market is full of clay pots that are made without its complete health value in mind. As the demand grows and the need to keep prices low, toxic additives are mixed to the clay. this is done in order to expedite drying or for making in slip molds – a faster making method. And the product is now being glazed with the same color as what the fired piece would have turned out to be without the glaze. This is done in order to save time with the finishing, but the same color is used so consumers can think its unglazed. A fully unglazed piece takes longer to finish and require more skill to work on but yields great benefits to cooking.

The best option for healthy clay pot cooking is using pots made from unglazed primary clay or pure clay. They are really healthy as no chemicals or glazes are used and are 100% green, unlike any other cookware. They are fully biodegradable and are equally good for the environment as they are for your health.

These 100% Eco-Friendly Pots And Pans Are Healthy Too

So many things are labeled “green” are actually quite far from being truly eco-friendly. The pots and pans labeled 'green cookware' are no different. This disguise is so great that many of the pots and pans are painted green and there are even labeled “green” or eco-friendly (type eco-friendly pots in a search engine, the…

So many things are labeled “green” are actually quite far from being truly eco-friendly. The pots and pans labeled 'green cookware' are no different. This disguise is so great that many of the pots and pans are painted green and there are even labeled “green” or eco-friendly (type eco-friendly pots in a search engine, the results include green colored pots) while the fact is the green paint itself has toxic ingredients unhealthy for the food and the environment in many ways.

What determines the eco-value of a product is, in fact, what is inside it or what it is made up of. To summarize, there are mainly 3-4 aspects that determine a product's planet-friendly worthiness:

What it's made of:

The raw material plays an important role in making an eco-friendly product. If the raw material is toxic, the product can never be called green or eco-friendly. In case of cookware, the metals conventionally used to make cookware release many toxic by-products during mining, extraction, processing, and finishing. Acquiring the raw material calls for massive deforestation to create mines and quarries (for ingredients in ceramic cookware) affecting the wildlife and the lives of people living nearby. Can this be eco-friendly? No way!

How is it made?

Even if you choose an eco-friendly raw material, the way of manufacturing may affect the environment if chemicals are used at any stage and if toxic liquid or gaseous wastes are released into the environment. It is important that the manufacturing process either affects the environment nor the health of people working in it.

How does it work?

Another determining factor is how it cooks? Most non-stick cookware release toxic fumes when heated poisoning the environment. Most metal cookware requires high heat to accomplish anything while cooking. This is because metals heat and cool at the same time and a higher amount of heat is needed to cook the same food as compared to a truly eco-friendly pot (keep reading to find out which one is).

Another aspect that's also important is what happens at the end of their life cycle: really green cookware should be fully biodegradable. Treatment of non-biodegradable waste is a challenge the whole world is struggling with and if a product is non-biodegradable it is certainly not eco-friendly.

The only pot that is green in all 4 aspects is cookware made from pure clay:

The raw material is all-natural and non-toxic . It does not affect the environment while it is harvested or processed. In fact, people working with pure clay have reported it has the therapeutic effects on their health. So the raw material is truly eco-friendly – CHECK!

Pure clay pots are made without using any chemicals. They are made in an old-fashioned way on a potter's wheel with skilled hands and that sure is not harmful to the environment. This time-honored method of making pots from pure clay makes its manufacturing process absolutely green – CHECK!

When the pots made from this healthy substance cook food, they either leach toxins nor destroy nutrients. On the contrary, they cook food with gentle, far-infrared heat that keeps the nutritional value of food intact. Also, at the end of their useful lifecycle, they can be disposed of everywhere – they will go back to the same earth from where they came from causing no harm to the environment, making them fully biodegradable and then, eco-friendly – CHECK!

Garden Cabins – How To Choose The One For Your Garden

Take a moment to imagine your garden. The birds are chirping, insects buzzing, the wind moving gently and gracefully through the plants and trees. What is missing in that picture? You sitting with the doors and windows open from your gorgeous garden cabin with a cool glass of iced tea, a book and a sense…

Take a moment to imagine your garden. The birds are chirping, insects buzzing, the wind moving gently and gracefully through the plants and trees. What is missing in that picture? You sitting with the doors and windows open from your gorgeous garden cabin with a cool glass of iced tea, a book and a sense of utter contentment, of course!

Garden cabins are the hottest home improvement and garden trend these days. Trust me, you need one.

Why In The World Would I Need a Cabin In My Garden?

People choose garden cabins for a number of reasons. For some they are a guest house, offering people a place to stay as either visitors to their home, or even renting it out as an airBNB accommodation. These usually have working bathrooms, running water and mini kitchens in the unit.

Others are less expansive. They can be workout rooms, reading nooks or just somewhere to relax and get away from the main house. Some are even greenhouses with increased functions, which is a great way to get a bit more out of things.

Garden Cabins VS Gazebos

You might be wondering why you would not just get a gazebo. After all they are the same thing … wrong! Gazebos are open, covered patios or decks that are detached from the house. Garden cabins are actual miniature versions of houses, or single room dwellings. They offer something more, like the ability to sit out in the garden on rainy or winter days.

Although a gazebo can be an awesome addition to a yard, a garden cabin really improves the value of your house. Plus they are just nicer.

The Cost of Buying and Maintaining Garden Cabins

The cost of garden cabins can vary. Some will be as little as a couple hundred for what is essentially a fancy shed. Others can be up to ten thousands for a fully functional guest house style cabin. Usually they range in the $ 3,000 – $ 6,000 range.

Maintaining them depends on what materials you use. Log cabins require restaining every three to five years, costing between $ 3,000 and $ 5,000 during that time. Other materials used probably will not need that kind of work, because it is a small price to pay for such a gorgeous extension to your home.

Examples Of Incredible Garden Cabins

There is no end to what you can do with a garden cabin. Here are ten examples of incredible ones people have made.

1. The Guest House – These people have chosen to built a guest house style of cabin that allows them to rent out to travelers who need a nice place to stay. It is in a gorgeous garden and works as an alternate form of income that offsets the initial cost of building the cabin.

2. The Japanese Garden – A touch of Japanese culture overlooks a Japanese style stone and water garden. This is another hotel accommodation that takes it a little further, offering its own deck, hot bath and more. As you can see, anything is possible that you wish to design.

3. The Low Roof Vermont – This is a cute little Vermont style cabin that has a very low roof. That may be a problem for some people, but if you are not that tall or are building it for children (garden cabins makes excellent playrooms) then it could be a great and affordable option.

4. The Summer House – This adorable summer house uses a classic country style with open windows to take advantage of the natural light during the summer months. It is similar in many ways to a solarium, an old fashioned room that was used for people to get a bit of indirect sunlight.

5. The Triangle Cabin – A unique design really makes this cabin stand out. They have made it into a little triangle that tucks it neatly into the corner of the garden while eliminating wasted space. This would not be good for a guest house, but might be nice for a little relaxation room, meditation space or home gym.

6. The Dorset Log Cabin – Have you ever wanted an office but did not want it to be stuck in your house, in that little unused bedroom in the basement? Some people are choosing mini log cabins in their garden as the place to work. Just imagine doing business with the doors open to the fresh air and sunshine. It is a great alternative!

7. The Contemporary – These contemporary log cabins are made either as primary homes, or as garden cabins in smaller forms. They are custom made for each customer but you can see examples of how they are using modern designs to make something truly in this century. So if you are a fan of today's architecture and want something that matches it these are gorgeous.

8. The Malvern – This cabin uses top to bottom glass windows that also operate as doors, swinging from the inside to let in as much light and air as you want. Open one or open them all, you have total control. The look is not quite as stylish with the gray paneling, but it gives us a general look at the design choice, which could easily be implemented into trendier blueprints.

9. The Pods – For those who want something ecofriendly, these pop-up pods are just the thing. The contemporary design is open without offering zero privacy. The roof can be seeded to add additional plants from your garden that actually grows on top of the cabin itself. They tend to be pretty small but cheaper than you would expect. Not to mention easy to erect, unlike many other styles that require full construction.

10. The English Country – This tiny but adorable garden cabin gives us a taste of the English countryside. It has a very genteel look for it, something that you would expect in a movie or novel. It has more privacy than most of the cabins on this list, though still offers windows that can be opened or closed. The double swinging doors are a nice touch that give it a bit more oomph.

LEED Building: What Is It?

LEED or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design is one of the most well-known and widely used green building certification programs in the world today. LEED building is not only beneficial for the environment, it likewise offers a number of advantages to the homeowner. As the green building movement became more and more popular these…

LEED or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design is one of the most well-known and widely used green building certification programs in the world today. LEED building is not only beneficial for the environment, it likewise offers a number of advantages to the homeowner.

As the green building movement became more and more popular these days, GreenStar, LEED, BREEAM, and many other rating systems have also come to the surface. Many local, state and national governments across the world have adopted the green building concept. Some of them even provide various incentives for its widespread development. Because of this, many developers from the private sector, public agencies, and institutional owners have also accepted the concept of green buildings.

With the number of rating systems available today, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system is considered as the game changer. Since the first decade of the 21st century, buildings and homes that were built in accordance with the LEED rating system had offered a great impact on the reduction of water consumption, material use, and CO2 emissions.

What is LEED?

The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or LEED is among the most commonly used green building certification programs or rating systems in the world. It was developed by US Green Building Council (USGBC), a non-profit organization that was established in 1993.

LEED is now universally recognized both as a symbol of excellence and as an international standard for green or environmentally sound buildings. It includes specific rating systems not only for the design of the green homes, buildings, and neighborhoods but also for their construction, maintenance, and operations. LEED was devised to help building operators and owners become more environmentally responsible and to help them utilize all sorts of resources more efficiently.

Why build a LEED building?

The earth is no longer as sustainable as it was a few decades ago. This is a fact almost all people in the world are already aware of. While many companies and government agencies are already doing their share to sustain the environment, there are also countless of private individuals today who take their part in the green movement campaign. One of the things that many people do to help save the earth is to build green homes and to live an eco-friendly lifestyle.

But a LEED certified home is not only about sustaining the environment, it also includes improving the way of living of the homeowner. Because a home constructed to LEED certification standards provides a better quality indoor atmosphere and a healthier overall environment, you are sure that you and your family will become healthier and safer against all kinds of harmful contaminants that may cause illnesses. The enhanced ventilation system also helps you feel better and enables you to breathe easier.

One other reason why you should build a LEED building is that it is much more valuable than a typical and conservative home. If you need to put it on the market, you will also be able to sell it faster than an ordinary home.

Apart from that, a LEED home can also help you save money by reducing up to 30% energy consumption and water usage. Its maintenance costs are also lower compared to a home built to the International Energy Conservation Code.

The Top 7 Reasons to Do Aquaponics Gardening

Aquaponics is an interesting concept, I never once thought you could grow a garden with fish but the popularity of this method is sky rocketing. But what is Aquaponics and what are the advantages of having one? Those questions can be answered below. What is Aquaponics? The definition of Aquaponics is a system of using…

Aquaponics is an interesting concept, I never once thought you could grow a garden with fish but the popularity of this method is sky rocketing. But what is Aquaponics and what are the advantages of having one? Those questions can be answered below.

What is Aquaponics?

The definition of Aquaponics is a system of using fish and plants together to produce an Aquaponic Garden. By using The fish waste it provides an organic food source for the plants, and the plants naturally filter the water. This concept is not new to the eastern civilization as they have been doing it for hundreds of years with rice but the idea is relatively new in the west. This is for people that are looking to grow their own natural vegetables in their backyard or garden. A great alternative!

Benefits of Aquaponics

1. Endless Supply of Organic Vegetables & Fish

First, you will have a vast supply of organic food at your disposal. Some examples of what you can grow in your Aquaponic garden are:

Cucumbers

Tomatoes

Lettuce

Peas

Beans

Broccoli

Various herbs such as basil and parsley and the list goes on …

2. No more annoying pulling out weeds

I swear this is the best part, how many times has someone dropped out weeds breaking your back only to see they are back again days later?

3. You can grow ten times as much using less space than you would with traditional gardening

You get more yield, how great is that? Especially if you have a small yard you will have an ample supply of fresh vegetables more than you would with traditional gardening.

4. It's practically automated

You do not need to spend as much time on it as you would with a traditional garden, you just sit back and monitor it and let the fish do all the work for you.

5. You do not have to worry about fertilizing it

It is always hard to keep the balance when fertilizing your garden in a traditional environment. It can make or break your garden, and then, of course, you have bugs to deal with that invade our traditional plants and are really hard to control. So at that point, many people use pesticides to get rid of the pests which are toxic and harmful to ingest.

6. Easy to build

The materials are easy to find and hardware stores and it is fairly easy to set up and if needed, easy to take down to move around.

7. It's cost-effective

You will have an abundant supply of vegetables as well as fish that would have cost hundreds to thousands of dollars. You will save a ton of money rather than going to the grocery store.

As you can see there are huge benefits to adding an Aquaponic system as it can produce and yield a mass amount of vegetables and plants for your garden as well as save you a lot of money. There is not much effort involved and when it's fully set up you will have a self-sustainable, chemical-free Aquaponics garden that you and your family can enjoy.

Can You Live Green In Prefab Log Cabins?

As we face a world affected by global warming many of us are turning to green living as a means of reducing our carbon footprint and helping to heal the planet in any ways we can. Finding the right home is a big part of that, as the wrong materials could severely damage the neighboring…

As we face a world affected by global warming many of us are turning to green living as a means of reducing our carbon footprint and helping to heal the planet in any ways we can. Finding the right home is a big part of that, as the wrong materials could severely damage the neighboring environment, or cause toxic pollution into the air.

When it comes to log cabins, there is a definite negative connotation. People remember the warnings from decades ago about fallen trees and dangerous chemicals. But times have changed and it is now not only easy to live green in a log cabin, but prefab log cabins in particular offer you some awesome opportunities to do so.

Here are ten ways that you can live green in log cabins, where you are.

Ways To Live Green In Prefab Log Cabins

  1. Look at the chemicals used when staining. For many years this was the largest concern with log cabins. The staining and sealant used on the wood was incredibly dangerous for the environment and sometimes even bad for the people living inside the home. That is no longer the case and safe, eco-friendly chemicals have taken their place. You can find green products that will keep your log cabin in tip top shape without striking out at Mother Earth. Look for cabins with the green seal of approval.
  2. Go for log cabins that use recycled lumber. The second largest environmental concern was that log cabins require the filing of trees … a lot of them. Whole forests have been cleared out in the name of building and it has waked havoc on natural beauty across the globe. Do not fret, you can find a ton of recycled lumber anywhere from lumber yards to junk yards. Many kits and prefabs now use this lumber themselves to offer greener kits that do not waste materials while also being cheaper to produce (and cheaper for the consumer).
  3. Keep critters out. How could having critters in the home be a hazard to the environment? They are not, in and of themselves. But having to use an exterminator who comes in with dangerous poisons and sprays around might be a serious problem. Not to mention certain animals can become disrupted if they become reliant on humans for things like shelter and food. Keeping them out from the start is always a better idea. Make sure the prefab you choose does not have any off gaps, unusual crawl spaces or easy access inside for anything not meant to be there.
  4. Make sure your cabin is properly sealed. Another way that we hurt the environment is by using certain resources more than we have to. Perhaps the most common examples of this is heating and air conditioning. It is easy to forget how much we are using up when we flip on the climate control in our homes. If nothing else, your bill at the end of the month will remind you. Making sure your log cabin has no leaks where air is escaping can really change that.
  5. Take care of damage quickly. Prefabs log cabins are usually made much sturdier than most of their counterparts. Logs are better equipped for handling the elements than drywall and plastic sheeting. But damage does happen, especially if the cabin has not been restained in awhile or if you live in an area that has harsher weather at certain points of the year. The faster you fix damage the less damage there will be. That means less materials to fix it.
  6. Add some enhanced features. Want to make your cabin especially eco-friendly? It may be worth adding a feature or two to make it that way. For instance, are you worried about how much energy you use? Put up some solar panels and start making the switch to a more green form of fuel. Want to use less water? Go for a prefab with low flush toilets, or add a water tank in back that captures rain water. You would be amazed at how customable prefabs can be, especially when it comes to green improvements and upgrades.
  7. Place your cabin in an urban area. This may seem like an odd one but hear me out. A log cabin does not just have to be in the country and with prefabs they can be placed anywhere. By living in a city instead of the country you can use public transportation and lessen your car use. You can find community gardens and take part in city wide efforts to less harmful environmental habits. Not to mention you can walk more, which is great for your health!
  8. Change household consumer habits. Sometimes it is not our home that sets the standard but the day to day choices we make which have the most influence over our footprint. Take a look at the items you buy. What is in them? How are they packaged? Are they local or do they have to be imported in from somewhere else? Are there ways you could change your shopping choices to better reflect your desire to be more green? Even the stores you choose can make a huge difference into what is being done to our planet, as well as the brands we choose to give our money to. Spend wisely.
  9. Recycle, recycle, recycle. Of course, recycling is a major part of keeping the world clean. As long as you are using recycled lumber, why not also go all the way and start recycling items you use in your home? Cans, plastics, even wood from projects or repairs that you take from your cabin can be passed forward. Less trash means less in the landfill and we could definitely benefit from that.
  10. Fill your home with used goods. Finally, we have items like furniture and other big ticket items. Buying used is one of the best things you can do for your green living goals. You can even get prefabs that have been owned before!

Tips For Living In a Wooden House In Winter

Wooden houses are pretty much made for Winter. Think about it: a nice, roaring fire in the fireplace. Snow falling softly outside. A twinkling Christmas tree in the corner. Everyone sipping on hot cocoa and singing carols. It is an image that is deeply engrained in the consciousness of many and for good reason. But…

Wooden houses are pretty much made for Winter. Think about it: a nice, roaring fire in the fireplace. Snow falling softly outside. A twinkling Christmas tree in the corner. Everyone sipping on hot cocoa and singing carols. It is an image that is deeply engrained in the consciousness of many and for good reason.

But you do not have to rent a ski cabin to get that feeling. You can find it in your own log cabin, a gorgeous and valuable bit of real estate that is perfect for anyone who wants that serenity and calm all year long.

Wooden houses take a bit more care through the year. So here is what you need to know before you buy your own log cabin, so it will be ready once the weather turns cold.

Take Local Weather Into Account

Not everyone has extreme weather where they live. If your Winters are not especially harsh then you can probably get away with minimal preparation and be fine. But if you live in an area that gets very wet or cold you will have to take extra care so you do not damage the lumber, something that is very easy to do without proper wood treatment.

Heat is another factor, so if you live in a very hot climate make sure you are taking the same precautions every year. The sun can be just as damaging as the damp.

Do not worry, even extreme weather can not break down the strength and beauty of wood, as long as you take care of it. With proper intervention a wooden house can be passed down for generations.

Make Sure That Fireplace Works

That roaring fire in the image above? That can be your reality but you have to make sure you fireplace is in tip top order. Any improperly maintained fireplace is, of course, a risk. But in a wooden house you have an additional threat if sparks catch, so do not skimp out!

Make sure your home is zoned for a fireplace. Keep the chimney cleaned and sweep it every year before the cold months when you are going to be using it most. Put a good dampener on that can be opened and closed easily. That will let you open it for use, but keep it closed when not in use so air does not leak out. It also stops critters like birds, bats, arachnids, insects and small mammals from wandering inside and causing a major headache.

Be Ready To Stain and Seal

A log cabin has to be restrained every three to five years to keep the wood in good condition. This is well worth the cost as your home is an investment that is worth a great deal more than what you put into the upkeep.

Failing to restain your house will lead to cracks in the wood, warping and even rot. Replacing logs is expensive and difficult, usually requiring a contractor experienced in woodwork to come and do it for you. The staining, on the other hand, is a DIY job most people can complete on their own. It can run you anywhere between $ 1500 and $ 5000 depending on the size of the house and any extensions (such as wooden garages), but for an expense every few years it is relatively low.

Weatherstripping Is Your Best Friend

Even without any gaps in the wood, leaks can happen in log cabins. Like any assuming there are drafts around windows and doors, or in attics and basements. This can be frustrating for homeowners who want to keep the chill away from their abode, but worry about the high energy costs needed to do it. Some turn to firewood to keep the warm up up, but that does nothing if it escapes through the cracks.

Weatherstripping is inexpensive and easy to do yourself. You can seal the windows and doors to keep air from leaking and keep that warm in with your family. Most hardware stores have kits with full instructions and YouTube has great information videos showing the process.

It even helps once summer comes, keeping that cool air inside!

Extra Insulation Makes For a Cozy Cottage

If you do not mind a heavier project that takes a bit more time and expertise, you may want to consider adding some extra insulation to your home. Insulation helps to keep from air escaping the way weatherstripping does. It is especially helpful in wooden homes because of drafts pushing through the logs.

The attic is one particular area where extra insulation can completely change the way your house conserves energy. Warm air tires to move upward, so if you have a drifty attic space, even if it is a small crawlspace, it can let out a lot of it. Adding in some insulation will keep it trapped inside from the leakiest part of the house, which keeps it down in the rooms where you and your family live.

Heavy Curtains Make a Big Difference

If insulation is not possible, or if you just want an additional tool to keep your house warm, heavy curtains can do the trick. Thick enough to block out the light, these babies also keep heat from going through the window. The heavier the fabric, the better the warm air will remain where it is meant to be, in your house.

You can use a lighter weight curtain if you worry about reinforcing the rods enough to keep something heavier in place. Just make sure you add a layer or two to give the highest possible barrier around your windows.

Keep Those Critters Out

Finally, you have the critter problem. Insects, arachnids, small mammals like rats, mice and even raccoons … these are all possible hazards to your wooden home. Termites can eat right through the wood and other creatures might claw and gnaw in through the lumber.

Be prepared to seal your house every Winter and consider spraying for pests before the first snow hits. That will keep the problem at bay before it ever gets out of hand.

How to Properly Prepare Your Log Cabin for Winter

Winter is coming (no, that is not a Game of Thrones reference) and it is time to start getting that lovely log cabin of yours ready for the bad weather around the corner. Wooden houses are awesome as they are high value, beautiful, sturdy and a dream home for many. Unfortunately they require a bit…

Winter is coming (no, that is not a Game of Thrones reference) and it is time to start getting that lovely log cabin of yours ready for the bad weather around the corner. Wooden houses are awesome as they are high value, beautiful, sturdy and a dream home for many. Unfortunately they require a bit more maintenance than the average house does, given the materials used to build it.

Before the snow starts to fall, make sure you have gotten these things stuck off your Winter preparation checklist.

Clean The Outside

The first step is always getting the exterior of the house prepared, because it is what will be most impacted by inclement weather. Scrubbing it down and washing off dirt with a hose is a good idea. If dirt is trapped under snow it could remain there all winter, which is not good for the wood and could lead to damage later on down the road.

You should also clean out the gutters, which can become logged with water and cause the wood to rot through the Winter. Consider getting snap on gauuter covers and an extender that releases the water further from the house. These are an inexpensive investment that will keep you from much costlier repairs or lumber replacements in the future.

For your garden it is worth getting everything cleared and prepared for the next year, such as laying down special soils to heal the soil through the coming months. It may even be a good time to get some landscaping done, as many companies have lower prices during non-peak months.

Clean The Inside

Getting the inside cleaned is just as important as the outside. Why? Think of it as pre-Spring cleaning. Washing walls and windows, getting rid of dust and dirt and just getting everything aired out is an efficient way to prepare for the months you will be spending indoors. After all, you will not be able to keep the windows open in the frigid cold.

This is a great time to get your ducts cleaned, clear out any vents, change your filters, clean the carpets and do other odds and ends that will make your house more welcome and clean.

Look For (And Seal) Any Leaks

There are several reasons to make sure there are no leaks in your house or gaps in the wood. First of all, gaps and leaks can let out precious warm air. If you have been noticed you have been using a lot more air conditioning over the Summer there is a good chance there is a leak somewhere. As the weather gets colder it is easier to find these leaks as there will be drafts in certain areas of the house.

Weatherstripping is an easy way to get rid of the more obvious places where this is happening. Air escapes around windows and doors all the time, leading to a jump in energy costs and a less comfortable climate around the house.

Another problem that may occur is warping in your wood. Log cabins can get gaps, which let in pests and undesirable critters that are best left outside. Fix these gaps as soon as possible, otherwise the problem will just grow.

Spray For Pests

Even if you do not have any infestations that you know of, it can be a good idea to spray for pests before the Winter comes. As the weather gets more cold insects and vermin of all types can make their way into crevices in your home, making nests and take shelter from the winds and rains before it turns to snow. You may not know they are there until until there are so many they can no longer be hidden. That is a common story for log cabin owners who end up finding signs of infestations come Spring.

Spend a few weeks laying down traps, poison and spraying. Pay special attention to attics and basements, as well as anywhere you may have found leaks. Spray along the outside as well as they may have not yet found a way into the house.

As Winter progresses you may have to spray again. Wooden houses are prior to certain sneakier pests such as termites, which can eat through your wood and cause damage to the exterior and interior of your house faster than you might imagine. Always be on the lookout for signs of their existence.

Put Up Energy Saving Curtains

If you have weatherstarmed, checked and sealed leaks and still want to save energy and keep the house nice and toasty, consider putting up energy saving curtains. These are the thick blackout curtains that require reinforced rods to hang.

They are heavy, dense and do not let any light into the room, making them perfect for days spent sleeping in, or those who have a night schedule and sleep during the day. These curtains also help keep the air inside from escaping so your house stays nice and warm during the colder months and nice and cool during the hotter ones.

If you do not want to go with heavy curtains there is an alternative method. Get regular curtains and put another piece of fabric between them and the window. It is not the best way to keep in heat as some will still escape through the layers. But that additional barrier will be some improvement to a single sheet.

Evaluate Exterior For Possible Restaining

Every log cabin owner knows that they need to restrain their home every three to five years to keep the wood healthy and reduce the risk of cracks, wood warping and chips. Every year before the snow falls you should take a look at the exterior to make sure the time has not already come for that new layer of stain.

One thing you might notice is that there are some areas that are more worn than others. This is usually due to sun, rain or wind exposure, which means a section could need staining before the rest. Get this done before it gets too cold, or your risk the wood rotting from the damp.

Eco-Friendly Ways to Brighten Your Home

The 21st century has certainly seen a rise in the level of awareness regarding environmental conservation and sustainability. From efficient waste disposal to water conservation, everyone is looking for ways to make sure that the earth stays green. But, if you are still wondering if switching off the lights when not in use is enough…

The 21st century has certainly seen a rise in the level of awareness regarding environmental conservation and sustainability. From efficient waste disposal to water conservation, everyone is looking for ways to make sure that the earth stays green.

But, if you are still wondering if switching off the lights when not in use is enough on your part, then think again. There are more things that you can do to not only reduce your electricity bills, but also save energy.
Here are some eco-friendly ways to brighten your home. With these tips, you can give your house a completely fresh and vibrant appeal, while at the same time reduce energy consumption significantly.

First of all, ditch those old tungsten coil bulbs. The rusty 70s look is not what you want to welcome your guests to. Prefer lighting up your living room with calm lights using LED bulbs. These are not just energy efficient, but also last probably longer than the traditional bulbs or CFLs. And the best part is, these go with everything! You can install them on the walls or ceiling, or give a creative touch to your living room with chandeliers.

Eco-friendly Ways to Brighten Your Living Room
These days, LED lamps have also become quite popular as living room accessories. These lamps provide great lighting and perfectly complement the furniture and décor of your living room. Lamps with bright shades go well for an elegant seating area, whereas bright colors blend seamlessly in more upbeat and colorful settings.

Another smart idea to save electricity in your living room is to install glass and mirror items. Such artifacts and accessories refract or reflect light, making the room look brighter and even more spacious than before. Having small lights at separate spots will help you reduce the consumption and get the perfect ambiance for all occasions.

Eco-friendly Ways to Brighten Your Bedroom
The lighting in the bedroom needs to be moderate, to give a cozy and relaxing environment. If you have a large window in your bedroom, consider only 2 or 3 LED bulbs so that you can regulate the brightness during night time. If you want more light during the daytime, then ceiling mount LED would be a great choice.

If you like to read at night, you can have a bedside tabletop or wall mount LED lamp. The table or lamp serves as extra shelf space to keep your books and other small items. Again, these serve as excellent décor accessories as well. If you think that LED lights could be too bright for your bedroom, then you can always choose dimmable LEDs that can create a much more gentle and relaxing ambiance.

Eco-friendly Ways to Brighten Your Study Room

Lighting is a critical element of a study room or home office. If you spend considering hours every day in your study or home office, then prefer wall or ceiling mount LEDs instead of the CFLs or tungsten bulbs. If you need lighting only on the desk area, install the bulb right above it or on the wall to the left or right.

The benefits of installing LEDs are many. Choose them to reduce the electricity consumption at your home and to create a bright space. Be smart and help in saving the planet.

Choosing Green Cookware? Pure-Clay Cookware Is the Best Option, Here’s Why?

Besides being healthy for you green cookware, is also “healthy” for the environment. With popular metal and ceramic cookware flooding store shelves today, I am sure you're thinking how pure-clay is the best eco-friendly option? Let's find out: Pure-clay significantly differs in many ways from what is commonly available in the market. These are discussed…

Besides being healthy for you green cookware, is also “healthy” for the environment. With popular metal and ceramic cookware flooding store shelves today, I am sure you're thinking how pure-clay is the best eco-friendly option? Let's find out:

Pure-clay significantly differs in many ways from what is commonly available in the market. These are discussed below:

The Raw Materials:

Metals are mined minerals formed under the surface of the earth millions of years ago. They are non-renewable, so once used up, there is no way to replace them. The ceramic material is a mixture of part clay (7% or so) and the rest is oxides and minerals. These are obtained through fracking. These elements separated from their natural state leach in the presence of oxygen and hydrogen. Food is fundamentally made up of oxygen and hydrogen molecules and all nutrients are bound in these molecules. Thus, these materials are unhealthy for cooking as much as they are unhealthy for the environment.

Pure-clay on the other hand is unglazed primary clay – it's nothing but earth itself in the purest form. It is harvested from the earth's surface where it's formed by natural processes. Pure-clay is renewable – once taken the earth replace it quickly. It's been used for centuries – even from before recorded history. This is likely due to its purity and health benefits.

The Making Process: Mining, Extraction & Manufacturing:

Mining and fracking cause massive deforestation. Extracting these metals from minerals and their processing leaves toxic by-products that pollute nearby waterways and the air. As a result, wildlife and human settlements get disrupted. This also ruins the ecological balance.

On the other hand, pure clay creates absolutely no by-products. You do not have to cut trees or pollute the environment in any way while harvesting or processing this material. Because of its rigidness it does not allow strong roots to go deep into the soil. At the most, this soil only allows for shallow grass to grow on it. In the making, pure-clay cookware is made using a negligible amount of energy.

Transportation:

The raw material for metal and ceramic cookware is transported long distances from the mining lands to the making factories. Many times, this could even be across the ocean. The exhaust gasses and waste from the giant ships used for this purpose pollute the sea and marine life. Also, they run at a high speed unduly killing sea creatures.

Besides these great benefits, pure-clay is the only material that's fully bio-degradable. At the end of their useful life-cycle, which could be decades long, you can re-purpose them in many ways; as plant pots, for storing water or let them simply bio-degrade naturally. They go back to the earth they came from without causing any harm to where they are treated – like a truly green material.

Pure-clay cookware is also 100% green while is use. For instance, it cooks with just the the heat compared to these other cookware.

Final Notes:

These are the reasons why this type of cookware is the best choice for green cookware . And also why they are ahead of other cookware that may claim to be green. So, when looking for “green” cookware, search with a holistic approach to find one that is truly environmental friendly in all aspects.

Why Are Specialty Surfactants So Special?

What makes a special surfactants so special? Is it the better performance? Do they also have other uses? Read along to get interesting insights! Specialty surfactants are mostly used as co-surfactants along with commodity surfactants. They are a fundamental ingredient in a number of domestic and industrial applications. Specialty surfactants remove stains and dirt from…

What makes a special surfactants so special? Is it the better performance? Do they also have other uses? Read along to get interesting insights!

Specialty surfactants are mostly used as co-surfactants along with commodity surfactants. They are a fundamental ingredient in a number of domestic and industrial applications. Specialty surfactants remove stains and dirt from the surface being cleaned. These products are used in shampoos, conditioners and body washes. They are usually extracted from petrochemical and oleo chemical sources

What are various types of specialty surfactants?

Anionic Surfactants : These products carry negative charge and are widely used in shampoos. They can be found in the form of sulphonates, sulphosuccinates, etc.

Cationic Surfactants: Cationic surfactants form one of the smallest surfactant categories in terms of volume and value. They are mainly used in rinses and hair conditioners.

Non-ionic Surfactants- These surfactants have no charge, and thus are resistant to deactivation in water with a high mineral content; since, they are particularly efficient grease removers.

Amphoteric Surfactants- These products have varied charge, based on the pH of the solution that they are placed in. They have excellent dermatological properties and are frequently used in shampoos, skin cleansers, and other cosmetics.

Why green specialty surfactants?

Specialty surfactants are facing many environmental concerns over the issues of them being biodegradable and environment friendly. The increasing consumer desire for 'green' products from the consumer have created an uncertain market.

Amphoteric surfactants, amidoamines, esters, alkoxylates and quats are some of the green surfactants that are available in the marketplace. They usually come in a combination with conventional surfactants. But the drawback faced by them is their high prices. Due to this these products are currently available in a very niche segment ie some natural brands. Instead of producing a new green surfactants many companies have adopted a policy of making the production process of their current surfactant green . This can be done by reducing the consumption on non-renewable fuels, reducing direct emissions and using enzymatic process to speed up the reaction.

A report by a market research firm estimates a moderate growth rate for global specialty surfactant market.

Specialty surfactants keep the dirt in a water solution to prevent it from being re-deposited onto the surface it was removed from. Surfactants are able to disperse non-water-soluble contaminants, which is why they are used in addition to water for cleaning purposes. Owing to the big middle class population Asia-Pacific is seen as the fastest growing region.

The main hurdles for the specialist surfactants market are; the increased popularity of using green products and environmental restrictions imposed on the manufacturing process

Is Your Food Killing You?

Approximately 300 million pounds of glyphosate are used on US crops each year. Glyphosate is sold as RoundUp. This bears repeating. The food grown in our country – that we eat – receives 300 million pounds of a deadly weed killer every year. This equates to about a pound of plant killer for every one…

Approximately 300 million pounds of glyphosate are used on US crops each year. Glyphosate is sold as RoundUp.

This bears repeating. The food grown in our country – that we eat – receives 300 million pounds of a deadly weed killer every year. This equates to about a pound of plant killer for every one of us in the United States each and every year.

Next time you are at a hardware store or garden center, look at the gallon jug of RoundUp. Now imagine that you have consumed that amount of the toxic weed killer through the last year …

A weed killer is designed to destroy. Extinguish life. So, receiving a pound of glyphosate per person each year means that we are eating poison. You would not dream of chugging a gallon of RoundUp so why would you want to eat it through your food?

Putting a weed killer on plant crops does not make sense. Would not a weed kill kill the crops? How can this be?

That is the extra crazy, straight out of science fiction reality of this situation. Glyphosate has actually been inserted into the DNA of crops. Yes, that is right. Scientists have figured out how to alter chromosomes of corn, soy, and many other crops by taking out the natural chromosomes and replacing them with chromosomes of a weed killer.

The practice of placing RoundUp DNA inside the DNA of crops mean for us to eat is known as Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs. Most industrialized countries outlaw GMOs. But not the United States.

And why on earth, would anyone want a weed killer in the DNA of food crops? Cue up the creepy background music because this is really out of a horror movie …

Let's use corn since corn is a HUGE crop in the United States. If a crop of corn is GMO and has glyphosate in the DNA, then all other weeds that grow within the crop can be sprayed with RoundUp – and not affect the corn. That is the source of the 300 million pounds of glyphosate each year.

Once the glyphosate is sprayed on the corn, it leaches into the soil. It is then picked up through the roots of the plant and becomes even more concentrated inside the corn kernels that we eat. And not just corn on the cob – it is in all corn chips, tortillas, cereals and just about everything that is sweet because much is flavored with high fructose corn syrup. Are you beginning to see how you are drinking that jug of weed killer each year?

Options are to grow your own food, only buy organic, and to speak up often and loudly so that the food industry stops this madness.

Disposable Palm Leaf Tableware

'Palm Leaf Plates'- this name really sounds odd in the beginning. Plates made of leaves, that too fallen leaves? You would be thinking how this can be possible. The leaf trend has come up with this idea. These plates are disposable and they are also eco-friendly. If you are a person who has a great…

'Palm Leaf Plates'- this name really sounds odd in the beginning. Plates made of leaves, that too fallen leaves? You would be thinking how this can be possible. The leaf trend has come up with this idea. These plates are disposable and they are also eco-friendly. If you are a person who has a great respect and also liking for nature and has a thought that you should protect the environment, then the Palm Leaf Tableware are for you exclusively.

Everybody in this world is held up in the rat race and they do not even find time to spend with their families and friends. If at all, they plan for a short outing, then they will be worried and exhausted when they think of cleaning the mess if food is served in plastic plates.

Parties and get together are always fun and it will leave some good memories behind. But … this is not the scenario in all the parties. Many parties leave behind scars also for many women which are nothing but the cleaning of the mess left behind by these parties. Right from the linens, table cloths, plates, everything needs to be cleaned and kept intact for the next party. Many women would be thinking of an alternative and here is the alternative … It is nothing but 'Disposable Palm Leaves' Made exclusively from the fallen palm leaves, these products are 100% natural and also 100% biodegradable.

Apart from that this tableware is available in different colors and also come in different shapes which will carry you away, no doubt. These palm leaf tableware also garners the attention of one and all during the parties and guests will end up discussing the plates rather than the delicious and yummy food which you serve. Highly sturdy and durable, these palm leaf plates can go with all sort of food and there will be no embarrassment when you face any kind of awkward situation.

Are you READY TO GO GREEN? Disposable palm leaf tableware helps you to go green. Available at an affordable price, these palm leaves are the most eco-friendly and also the fitting choice for parties and weddings, as well as for any other events where food is served. These plates attract one and all as it comes in unique shapes. It does not matter whether you serve two courses or six – disposable palm leaf tableware can handle them all in style. All varieties of food, sides, dessert can be served with elan in these plates.

What are you waiting for? Grab them now and enjoy the happiness longer …