Home Remodel, Renovation and Garden Shows in Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. Areas

Home & Remodeling Show DC

Photo courtesy of remodelingwashingtondc.org

 

We are in the midst of winter and the coldest months of the year. It is hard to actually think about the spring flowers, planting gardens and remodeling projects around the home. January through March are popular months for Home and Remodeling Shows throughout the Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. areas.  These shows are great opportunities to see the latest information and products and get some ideas for starting home projects.

Home and Remodeling Show Washington D.C.

The Home and Remodeling Show DC is January 23rd to January 25th at the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly, Virginia. This is the first major Home Show of the season. The show will feature all of the latest technologies, products and services for inside and outside of the home. There will be over 200 vendors who will be showcasing many home products from windows, appliances, paint, heating and air condition to roofing, doors and furniture. This year there will be special appearances by Kevin O’Connor host of This Old House on Friday and twice on Saturday. Husband and wife, John and Whitney Spinks from HGTV’s Flipping the Block will also be presenting at the Home and Remodeling Show twice on Friday and Saturday. They will give behind the scenes information about their flipping competition as well as home remodeling tips. There will also be seminars and presentations throughout the show including discussing exterior remodeling challenges and tips, lawn and garden tips, and room by room renovation demonstrations.  You can see the most updated information on the show via Facebook and Twitter.

The Capital Home and Garden Show is February 27th to March 1st at Dulles Expo Center. It is sponsored by the same company that produces the Home and Remodeling Show DC. This show focuses more on finding new ideas and great deals for landscaping and gardening projects as well as a chance to speak with experts in home remodeling, decoration and home improvement.  Jeff Devlin from DIY Network’s “I Hate My Bath” will be appearing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and Chris Lambton from HGTV’s “Yard Crashers” will be presenting yard and garden updates and tips on Friday and Saturday. Capital Remodel and Garden show also features over 3,600 square feet of feature gardens with water features, greenery, flowers and gardening accessories.

The Maryland Home and Garden Show also runs February 27th to March 1st. The show takes place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium, Maryland. This year’s theme is “Be Inspired”. There will be landscape experts, garden exhibits, home and remodeling tips and much more. This year, there will also be a petting zoo. New Features:  Petting Zoo, Tiny House, a 210 square foot hyper-efficient and sustainable home, Plant Sale, and over 300 Exhibitors to help you with spring and summer gardening and remodeling plans.

Self Storage for Home Remodeling Projects

After you have visited the different home garden and remodeling shows and received tips for your remodeling or renovation projects, it is time to start planning the projects for spring and summer. The quicker that you plan the projects, the quicker you can enjoy your new room.  Before you start your renovation project, clear the room of all furniture and personal items. Renting a self storage unit for household storage is a great way to keep the furniture and accessories protected during the renovation. If the remodeling project allows you to get new furniture, then keep the older furniture in a storage unit until you decide to sell, donate or throw away the belongings. Self storage is also a great storage option for contractors to store tools and supplies during projects.

Discover New Foods During Restaurant Week in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. Areas

Restaurant Weeks in Washington DC and Baltimore

Photo courtesy of blog.rockvillehotel.com

 

After the holidays, retail shops and restaurants experience a down time for. Most people would rather stay home for meals after the craziness of the holidays. In order for restaurants to bring in business during the slower winter months, many cities across the country offer restaurant weeks where restaurant goers get a chance to try out food at restaurants they didn’t think they could afford.  The Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas have a wide range of restaurants from casual to five-star that can satisfy any taste. During restaurant weeks, you get a chance to taste some of the great seafood that Baltimore is known for or the many culinary delights that are a part of Washington D.C. dining scene.

Restaurant Week in the Baltimore Area

Baltimore County Restaurant Week

Baltimore County kicked off the 2015 Restaurant Week season on January 9th with the special event running to January 24th. During Baltimore County Restaurant Week, restaurant goers can choose from a prix fixe (fixed price) three course lunch or dinner. The lunch price starts at $15 and the dinner prices go up to $35. The courses include appetizers, entrees, and desserts which are pre-determined by the chefs to feature their restaurant’s specialties. Beverages, tax and gratuity are not included in the prix fixe rate. The regular menus are also being offered during the special event as well. Reservations are recommended during the special event as the tables fill up quickly. There are over 50 restaurants participating in this year’s restaurant week, so you can spend the entire weekend tasting the food at different restaurants in Baltimore County! Check out the list of restaurants participating this year at the website.

Howard County Restaurant Week                                                                                               

Howard County celebrates Howard County Restaurant Week for 20 days from January 19th to February 2nd.  Over 20 Howard County restaurants are participating in this winter’s special event.  Restaurant week will feature locally grown products. The restaurants are offering fixed price special menus ranging in price from $10.15 to $40.15 depending on the time of day and the type of establishment. Make sure to make reservations early and confirm with the restaurant that they are participating in the special event. Also, a good tip is to read the menus in advance, so you know the options to choose from.

Baltimore Restaurant Week

The city of Baltimore spotlight’s its restaurants from February 15th to 28th. Baltimore Restaurant Week will offer 2 course lunches starting at $15 and 3 course meals ranging between $20 and $30 dollars. The prices do not include beverage, tax and gratuity. There will be over 55 Baltimore area restaurants participating in this year’s special event.

Washington DC and Northern Virginia Restaurant Weeks

Washington DC Restaurant Week

Washington D.C. is hosting the largest restaurant week in the area starting January 19th and running to January 25th. There will be over 200 of Washington D.C.’s finest restaurants participating is this winter’s special event. Restaurants will offer their featured dishes in a variety of styles including American, Mexican, French, Mediterranean, Italian, Southern, Seafood, Spanish, California, Pan-Asian and much more!  There will be fixed price menus for a 3 course lunch starting at $20.15 and 3 course dinners starting at $35.15. Restaurant week is a very popular event every year, so it is important to make your reservations early. Check out the menus of the restaurants on the event website to see what type of food you are in the mood for and then see if there is seating available.  Regular menu items are still available during restaurant week events, but they will not be at the special pricing. If you are in a large group of people, it is definitely recommended to make reservations early.

Alexandria Restaurant Week

January 23rd to February 1st is Alexandria, Virginia Restaurant Week. Sixty Alexandria area restaurants will be participating in this year’s event offering two specials: a 3 course fixed price dinner for $35 or $35 for dinner (only) for two. Some of the restaurants are also offering special lunch menus. Restaurant week participants can visit different Alexandria neighborhoods such as Old Town, Del Ray, Carlyle and the West End to have a great dining experience!

There are so many great restaurants in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas. Restaurant week gives you a perfect opportunity to try out a different style of food or just step outside their comfort zone without spending a lot of money. ezStorage has 46 locations in the Baltimore, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. areas that can serve all of your storage needs from household to business storage.

 

Events for Martin Luther King Jr Day in Baltimore and Washington D.C.

Martin Luther King Jr Day Events in Baltimore & Washington DC

Photo courtesy of ethicsalarms.com.

2015 Martin Luther King Day

This Monday, January 19th is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It is a day to commemorate and honor the life and lessons of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King’s actual birthday is January 15th, but it has been celebrated as a federal holiday every third Monday of January since 1986. There are many events to celebrate the civil rights leader taking place in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas. In 1994, Congress transformed the Martin Luther King Jr. Day into a National Day of Service. Volunteers participate in community service activities such as tutoring, handing out community meals, working in a food pantry, or cleaning and/or painting school buildings or community centers. President Obama and his family participate in volunteering events every year, including painting school rooms.  Last year, 58,000 children and teens were tutored by volunteers, 360,000 people received emergency food and over 38,000 veterans, military families and active duty military service personnel received assistance spearheaded by volunteers.

Martin Luther King Day Events in Baltimore and Washington D.C.

There are many events in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. area celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. taking place on January 19th.  There will be a special wreath laying ceremony at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial at 8 am. The Memorial is on a four-acre site along the Tidal Basin adjacent to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial. The focal point of the memorial is a 30 foot statue of Dr. King, carved into the “Stone of Hope” combined from two large boulders. The two boulders, the Stone of Hope and Mountain of Despair”, are words from Dr. King’s memorable “I Have a Dream” speech. The text of the famous speech is carved into the rock. There is also a 450 foot inscription wall, made from granite panels, which are inscribed with 14 excerpts of Dr. King’s sermons and public speeches.

Parades will also be held in Washington D.C. and Baltimore on January 19th.  In Washington, The 9th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Walk and Parade takes place starting at 11:30 am at 2500 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. with the parade following at noon and ending at Leckie Elementary School. Baltimore will be hosting the 15th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade presented by Forman Mills at noon. There will be over 50 groups participating in the parade including marching bands, honor/color guard, equestrian units, dance squads, civic organizations and floats. The parade kicks off at Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. and Eutaw Street and ends at Baltimore Street. The parade is produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion and The Arts. The Washington National Cathedral will host a celebration to honor Dr. King’s life from 2 to 4 pm on January 19th. There will also be a special event starting at 6 pm at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts called “Let Freedom Ring” with singer Natalie Cole.

Stop in to see how ezStorage’s 46 Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. area locations can help you with your storage needs. We offer a variety of self storage units to help with personal to business storage needs.

 

 

It is Wedding Planning Season in Washington D.C. & Baltimore

Wedding Planning TipsWedding Planning Tips

June is the most popular month to get married, but January and February are the biggest months for Wedding Shows! The holidays bring about many marital engagements and as soon as the holidays are over, the brides-to-be begin gathering wedding planning tips from many different sources. According to www.weddingstats.org, the average cost of a wedding in 2014 was between $27 to $29 thousand dollars!  And that doesn’t even include the honeymoon!  There are over 2.6 million weddings performed each year in the United States and most newlyweds end up spending more on their wedding celebrations than they intended.  Couples need to start planning now for the big-day, even if it is a year away.

Wedding Storage Solutions

Getting engaged and then married is one of life’s major events.  When you are getting married, you are combining two households. There will be duplicates of furniture, kitchen items, appliances and linens. A new home or apartment might not have available storage for all of those items.  Renting a storage unit gives renters storage solutions for small apartments until a decision can be made on what to do with the duplicate items.

Having a storage unit during the wedding planning process is also a great idea to store wedding decorations, centerpieces, extra tables, chairs and other necessities that will be needed on the big day. A storage unit is also a great place to store wedding gifts that arrive before the wedding. The gifts can take up a lot of vital storage space and might not be used until the households are combined. Having a storage unit for wedding storage will allow newlyweds a place to have all of their items in one contained place, which allows for easier organization.

 Bridal Shows in Washington D.C. and Baltimore

Washington D.C. and Baltimore are the hosts for the Wedding Experience in January and February. The Washington Wedding Experience takes place Sunday, January 18th from 11am to 5pm at the Patriot Center at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. The Baltimore Wedding Experience takes place at the Baltimore Convention Center February 7th and 8th. Both of these shows will allow the bride-to-be the opportunity to learn about the latest in wedding planning, fashions and trends. The shows will contain a fashion show featuring bridal gowns, bridesmaid dresses and formal wear for the wedding party. Show attendees can talk with and get tips from wedding professionals from planners, photographers, caterers, DJs, florists and much more. There will be exhibitions and displays on the latest in flowers, wedding cakes, table decorations, bridal gowns and much more. Show attendees will receive special gifts for attending as well as a chance to win a free honeymoon! Brides-to-be will receive all of the best wedding planning tips, so their special days will be the most memorable!

 

How to Sell and Stage a Home During the Winter

Staging a home for sale in the winter

January, February and March are the slowest months for buying and selling homes. The season for selling houses starts to warm up with the spring and is extremely busy during the summer months.  But, sometimes a job change or a change in life events requires selling your home in the winter months. Because of this situation, sellers may be more motivated to accept offers much quicker during the slower months. The seller will still need to emphasize the strengths of the home and downplay the weaknesses in order to attract the most potential buyers. In order to get more offers and sell the home quicker, realtors encourage “staging” a home for sale. Home staging is the process of decluttering, painting, re-decorating and in some cases upgrading the home to make it appeal to buyers. This can be done by the homeowner, realtor or staging companies. These companies, as well as realtors, recommend renting a self storage unit to place all of the extra items that can clutter up a home. The goal is to make the home welcoming during anytime of the year, but more so during the winter months. A clean, clutter-free home will be more attractive to potential buyers and could sell faster and for more money.

Home Staging Tips

Below are eight winter home staging tips to follow that will help your home look its best and attract the right buyer and the right price for your home:

  1. The first thing that needs to be done during home staging is de-cluttering your home. It is time to put away items that have been stacked in rooms for long periods of time. Make sure that you have the proper packing supplies on hand to properly store the excess items. This is also the time to store bulky furniture in order to create an open and inviting home.
  2. Make the home as visually appealing as possible. This involves cleaning, repairing problems, dusting, vacuuming and painting rooms. Keep up these maintenance projects, if it is taking longer for your home to sell.
  3. Realtors recommend removing personal photos and mementos in the home during home staging. However, it is a good idea to have photos (or at least a photo album) of the home during the spring and summer months, so potential buyers can see what the landscaping, flowers, patio and garden looks like during the rest of the year.
  4. The outside of the home is the first image that a potential buyer has of a home that is up for sale. If the home’s curb appeal is not up to par, that could “turn off” a buyer. It is critical to keep up with raking the leaves, cleaning out the gutters, sweeping down porches and repairing and replacing any exterior lighting problems.
  5. Keep the walkways clear of snow and ice. Shovel a clear path from the curbside (or driveway) to the front or back door of the home.
  6. Make good use of the lighting in your home. Open up the drapes and blinds to let the natural light in during daytime showings. If you have to show the home in the evening, make sure that all exterior and interior lights are functioning and are on. Replace light bulbs with a higher wattage and warmer hues to make the rooms more inviting.
  7. Keep the temperature of the home at a comfortable setting. Use battery-powered candles to add warmth and light to the room.
  8. It is recommended to make the colors of the room more neutral when you are staging your home. You can paint the walls a neutral color and have similar colors for your furniture, but add colorful seasonal accessories such as rugs, pillows and throws to give a pop to the rooms.
  9. An experienced realtor or staging company can be valuable resources for proper staging techniques.

 

 

New Year’s Resolutions to Be Healthy, Fit and Organized

NBC4 Health & Fitness Expo 2015Welcome to 2015! Have you set and started your resolutions yet?  The first week is the hardest week to keep focused on your New Year’s resolutions. According to Statistic Brain, 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions with 75% of those keeping to the resolutions during the first week, but by 6 months, only 46% of those actually kept up their resolutions!  The number one resolution in the Statistic Brain poll was losing weight with number five being staying fit and healthy. You can actually learn more about fulfilling these resolutions this weekend by attending the NBC 4 Health and Fitness Expo. Once you have developed a plan and have the fitness and sporting equipment needed for your lifestyle, then you will need a place to store these items when not in use for an extended period of time! That is where self storage comes into play!

2015 Health & Fitness Expo

NBC4 is sponsoring the 2015 Health & Fitness Expo January 10th to 11th at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington DC. The Health and Fitness Expo is the largest health and wellness event in the Washington D.C. area. The free health expo offers the latest information on fitness and health from hundreds of exhibitors, speakers and demonstrations. There will be health screenings, healthy fun family oriented activities, live exercise classes, including Zumba and dance classes, and healthy cooking demonstrations.

There will be healthy-living forums and seminars led by health exports during the Health and Fitness Expo in Washington D.C. The seminars include the wide-ranging topics such as diabetes care, post-traumatic stress, managing stress and coping with burnout, weight loss journeys and memory loss.  This year, the Health Expo welcomes three special guests for presentations: Meredith Vieira, Cynthia Bailey and Michelle Singletary.

Storing Sport and Fitness Equipment

After visiting and learning about great health and fitness ideas at the Health Expo in Washington DC, it is time to put your resolutions into action. Do you want to take exercise classes? Buy exercise equipment for your home? Create a work-out room in your home? Participate in a favorite sport?  All of these questions will require re-organization plans, time and money. You will need to know how to properly store your sporting and fitness equipment as well as find the perfect home for the equipment when not in use for extended periods of time.  You can create a gym or workout room in your home, if you have the space. The basement or mudrooms are also great places to store your fitness equipment. But, where can you store items when not in use or if they are seasonal type items? Self storage is a great home storage solution for storing your sports and fitness equipment outside of your home.

When placing your fitness or sports equipment in a storage unit, make sure that it is properly cleaned before storing. Keep weights stored on a rack with the lighter weights on top and the heavier weights on the bottom. Cover the weight rack with a canvas cover to prevent dust accumulation. Self storage is also a great place to store elliptical or treadmills when they are not in use. These fitness machines should also be covered with a canvas during long-term storage. Fitness equipment can be rotated in your storage unit for seasonal use. Storing sporting equipment in a self storage unit during their “off” seasons is a great way to relieve the home of some clutter. Hockey or lacrosse sticks, baseball bats, gloves and other equipment that you do not need year round can be stored in your storage unit. ezStorage offers a wide variety of storage unit sizes to store your fitness and sports equipment. Stop in to any of our 46 locations to find out how we can help with your storage needs!