Fresh Patch

I had a request for a article on Fresh Patch. Since this is a Carpet Cleaning Business and website, why not? 

  Many people have pee pads in their homes or their canine friends, but as carpet cleaners, we find that there is usually more urine on the carpets than on the pee pads. Now some people kennel train their dogs so that they learn to go outside, and not inside. Others think that this training is cruel, and give their pets pee pads. But this too requires training, as what dog would go on a pad, 'when there is fresh clean carpet right over there.' 

 So one company had an idea. Fresh Patch. Now if you don't know what Fresh Patch is, they're a company that delivers fresh, green, real, grass in almost like a litter box, to your door. Now this may seem like a really stupid idea, but it's not! A dog's instinct is to go on grass. Carpets are just an alternative. And Fresh Patch doesn't require training, your pets would rather go on grass than on carpets, but if they aren't trained to wait, they're gonna go when they have to go. 

  It's perfect for if you live in an apartment, or if you don't have a yard.  Dogs are gonna do what dogs are gonna do, and if you think that Kennel Training is mean, then buying or even making your own Fresh Patch would sure make your pet happier, and would save us a lot of work.

                                                    -AquaBeach

A dog using Fresh Patch in an appartment.

A dog using Fresh Patch in an appartment.

Creating a Masterpiece

Do you have a bare space of your wall that's driving you crazy? You just need to fill it, but all the paintings, and signs at the stores nearby are so expensive. Why not try to create your own masterpiece that perfect for your space. 

What type of Masterpiece: You'll need to decide on what type of masterpiece you'll make. What's the theme of your room? Use the theme to help create some ideas for your masterpiece. Is the room dedicated to family, or perhaps a place, maybe a people, such as native Americans, or is it a bright, happy, and random room. It can be realistic and defined, or whimsical, and fantasy like. Or even abstract, perfect for a random or bright room. It could be traditional or based of a certain artist, or place. If you are basing it off a place or a people, why not try to use some of their techniques. Like if you were doing Native Americans, you could paint a canvas, a rusty red, and finger paint cave paintings with your kids.

You don't have to be an artist to create a masterpiece. For example. If your room is bright and colorful, take a large canvas, with different colored paints, 3 plastic cups, and a ruler (optional). Pour a little of each paint into paper plates. Dip the open side of the cups in, and press them to the canvas. Randomize the colored rings. Then dip the long side of the ruler into some paint, it can be a different color or the same, and  press it to the canvas too. (You can also use paper plates for larger rings, or those tiny snack cups for tiny rings.)

Thank you to the person who did this. You did a beautiful job, and gave me a beautiful example for this article.

Thank you to the person who did this. You did a beautiful job, and gave me a beautiful example for this article.

Dots are great too. Paint a canvas a light color, or just leave it white, then use two different pain colors, and the ends of a two round highlighters or sharpies, to make dots. Cluster them at the top, and them spread them out more as you make your way down. 

                                                                -AquaBeach

*See the example pics below.

Dots

Dots

Signs

Signs

Abstract

Abstract

Whimsical

Whimsical

Places, People, and using their teqniques.

Places, People, and using their teqniques.

Tips to a Nice Room

I've always liked rooms that had personality. Like a room that's classy and timeless, or bright, contemporary, and edgy, the cozy rustic chic, and my favorite, the shabby chic. Here are a few ways to give your room a bit of character.

Paint: Paint can say a lot about a room. So picking the right paint will go a long ways. The lighter the color, the bigger the room will seem. It's best to decide on the theme of your room, before the color. You need inspiration. Is the room dedicated to your family, your pets, maybe an artist, or a place? My room's inspiration came from the Mediterranean Sea. I wanted the soft, peaceful, aqua that I saw gently crashing on the white sands, in pictures. I also wanted to mimic the feel of the Ocean on the Southern Oregon Coast (just a few blocks from my home). So I decided on 'Beach Breeze' by Valspar.

A Gallery: Every person has their favorite photos, memories, and paintings that they want to save and share. But many rooms have their pictures all over the place, where ever the frame fits. Why not give your room a more organized feel. A gallery wall or two is perfect for showcasing pictures. But having them in straight rows is quite boring (at least for me), why not line them up like bricks, overlapping, yet symmetrical. Why not trace your photos first, cut them out, and tape them (use a tape that doesn't peel the paint off your walls or Scotch Removable Adhesive Reusable Putty) where you think they should go, before putting the real thing up.

P.S. I did not take this photo. So thank you to the person who did. But this is a perfect example of an art gallery wall. Of course, if you wish, the more (pictures) the merrier.

Accessories: Every outfit needs accessories, whether it be a watch, a belt, or jewelry. So why not give your room some. You'll need to go back to your inspiration. Does your inspiration make you feel warm and cozy, or bright, and alive? Does it make you feel free, or make you feel loved? Perhaps all of these. Find throw pillows, blankets, vases, mirrors, clocks, anything to give your room more character. For me, my ocean themed room needed to be serene, and calm, but free, and alive too. So my accessories included sheer curtains that could flutter in the breeze if I opened my window, artistic pillows that matched my theme, a classy blue alarm-style clock, a white mirror (sanded to give it the shabby chic look I love), and pencil jars I made myself, out of mason jars, thick, brown fishnet, and rope/twine, with sea shell embellishes. And of course, rugs make everything better. (I also have a shelf that's tilted, so that my books, and binders stay neater. My dad made it for me.)

                                                                                             -AquaBeach

Orange' De Buggar Candles

You're sitting outside on a warm night with your friends and family enjoying the the fire, and the music on your patio. You'd be having such a fun time, if it wasn't for the mosquitoes bugging you. Here's a simple solution, that smells nice too.

You will need 2 candle wicks, citronella essential oil, a bag of small candles, a clean, empty can, a small cutting board, and of course... an orange.

Cut a large orange in half, and carefully scoop out the fruit until you have some nice, clean, perfect rinds.  Then fill the sauce pan with about one cup of water and place it on medium heat. Take the wicks out of the small candles (if you can't, just put them in anyways), and put them in a washed and dried, metal can. Put the can in the heated water until the wax is melted. Now put about 20 drops of the citronella essential oil (If you don't have any citronella, clove or eucalyptus are good too) in the melted wax, stir it over the heat until completely mixed. 

 Put your orange peels on the cutting board. Nestle the candle wicks in the center, and carefully pour the hot wax into the rind 'vessel'. Make sure that the wicks are standing straight and in the center. Throw your can away, and make sure that your candle cools and sets. Then take them outside, light them, and don't worry about those bugs.

                                         -AquaBeach

Winter Warmers

   Is the chill of winter starting to reach your bones? Try these winter treats to warm you and your family up.

 

   Mexican Spiced Chocolate:

  These are one of my favorites. It's basically your regular hot chocolate, but with a twist. Put one to two tablespoons of hot cocoa powder in a mug. Add a dash of your favorite creamer, half a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, and chili powder (not the mild kind). Pour your hot water in, mix well, and enjoy.

  If you prefer your chocolate richer, use melted semi sweet chocolate chips instead of cocoa powder and creamer. If you prefer it cold for a summer sweet, use chocolate syrup, and put it in the fridge for an hour or two.

Mulled Cider:

 I absolutely love this drink. It's  great for fall or winter to sit around a fire, and catch up with friends and family, sipping this warm and cozy refreshment.

Pour plain apple cider (you can find on the shelf in  juice isle) in a soup pot. Add allspice berries, or allspice, pumpkin spice, and orange peel sliced thinly. You can even squeeze a little bit of fresh orange juice into it for added flavor. Let simmer for 30 minutes, and serve. If you prefer it iced, let it cool down, and then put it in the fridge for a few hours.

Chocolate Gift Truffles:

Truffles are nice gifts for family and friends but they are also nice to eat when you need to answer to your sweet tooth. Just don't eat too many.

Cover a cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Pour 1 cup of semi sweet chocolate chips into into a glass mixing bowl. Fill a sauce pan with 2" of water, and put the bowl of semi sweet chocolates in the pan. Just to make sure you understand what I'm saying, you don't put the chocolate in the pan with the water. You put the bowl in the pan with the chocolate in the bowl. Heat it up, constantly mixing it until it's melted. Remove from heat and stir in 2 tablespoons of melted butter, stir in 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream. Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes. Stir it every so often until it's thick enough to hold a shape. Shape mixture into small balls about the size of a quarter. You can even wrap the mixture around nuts if you please. Freeze for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat another cup of semi sweet or white chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon of shortening. Stir slowly until mixture is smooth and remove from heat. Dip the truffles one at a time into the mixture and them roll them in finely chopped nuts, or cocoa powder. Put them in little boxes, wrap them up, and send them off, or if you really can't help yourself, eat them right there.

Lemon Curd:

You can put lemon curd on cakes, toast, cookies, and more. If you don't know already, here are the directions to make it. 

Zest a few lemons (5) , how many depends on how much you plan to make it. (I usually make a lot just because my family loves it so much. ) Then juice the lemons. Cut two sticks of butter (again depends how much you plan to make) into little squares, or smallish pieces. Crack your eggs (about 8) into a heat proof bowl. Whisk the egg yolks until they are frothy, add about a cup of sugar more or less depending (it's quite intense, so if you don't like things to sour, you can add a bit more sugar). Whisk for another minute or so. Add the lemon zest and juice, and mix well. Then put the bowl in a sauce pan that has about 2" of water in it. Heat up, stirring constantly until it's thick , almost like a soft jam. This can take almost 20 minutes if not more. Add the butter, one piece at a time, stirring constantly but slowly. If you want, you can run the curd through a strainer to get the zest and other lumps out. Let cool and refrigerate. Enjoy! 

                                           -AquaBeach

Computer Tips for Small Buisness - Shortcuts for Chrome Browser

 

What-   This Blog post will be about how to set up shortcuts to use within the Chrome Browser! (If you are a Chrome Browser user and especially if you use Google Docs and Apps you will love this tip!)

Why-   As much of what we do for Work, Business, Social Media, email etc has gone to online and Cloud Computing formats, we spend a large portion of our time with an Internet Browser.  One of the most used and downloaded browsers for Windows and Macs  is the Chrome Browser.  If you are a Chromebook user the integration is already there.  

    Navigating to websites that we use a lot has traditionally been done by bookmarking your pages, then trying to go find these book marks later by the navigation of the large list of bookmarks.  This can be cumbersome after a while. Also now in the age of Cloud Computing , if you use google Drive, One-drive, or Online Storage , all of our spreadsheets, word documents, presentations are s simply specific web links that point to that document.  A simpler way to open your most used web pages or online cloud documents is to use an often unknown feature in Chrome Browser which allows you to access the desired web page with one, or a few key  letters.    

 How-  

  • First, find the web page or online document that you want saved.  

  • Then simply; copy the URL or web address, go to the Chrome Browser settings, scroll down until you see the Button for “Manage Search Engines”.  

  • Click on this button and then the fields with two categories, Default and Other search settings  will appear for saving your hot keys and URL'S. You will use the “Other Search Settings” area.  

  • The 1st area coming from the left  will be the name you choose for your hot key.  This could be anything to describe the hot key like “My Chase Bank login”, “My Blog”, “My Budget Spreadsheet”, etc.  

  • The 2nd area coming from the left will be the hot keys you choose. They can be letters, numbers, a combination of both, or just one letter.   For Example, your bank login page can be just the letter “B”.  

  • The 3rd area is where you paste the Url you just copied from your Bank Login Page. Paste it in the cell and you are ready.

  • Go to new browser tab and type a “B” then hit enter.

  • Repeat the process for all of your frequently used online documents, web pages, etc.

Pet's and Carpets

What-What is the best way to Handle Fresh Pet Urine spots on the your Carpets.

Why-We all love our pets whether they be a new puppy in training or an old yeller who has been with us for years.  With the joys of having pets, come also the challenges of keeping your carpets in good condition, looking good, and also smelling good.  This Blog in particular will give tips on how to efficiently find and cleanup any pet urine before it can build up deep into the pad.

    Many Spray and wipe cleaners are advertised for this particular reason.  After cleaning hundreds of carpets with pet issues, we at Angels Carpet Cleaning  DO NOT recommend spray and wipe methods.  Methods we will recommend will be similar to what a Professional Carpet Cleaner would do if they came to your house. You can most likely mimic these methods with items you may have already in your house.  

    We will also give advice on one of the most important parts of this process, that is finding the piddles  We found this extremely important, as most pets during or after training instinctively know that urinating on your carpets is wrong. Many clients we work for will say “he only went in this area”  or “ he never goes over there.”  In reality , the truth is “ he only went in this area”  when you caught him doing it.  There will be many areas that you will overlook.  It's important to find these areas as soon as possible, to clean properly and also to be able to train your pet properly.  

How- So how do you find these area quickly and efficiently?  The best way is by purchasing a UV light.  In all 4 of our vans at Angel’s Carpet Cleaning, we carry UV lights for finding these areas. Some of the professional lights can cost up $450 dollars, but these are not needed if you do your inspection at night when you can dim the lights.  You can pick up a UV light for as little at $15 on Amazon. 

    After getting your light, simply turn off the lights, and shine it on the carpets.  Any pet Piddles will show up clear.  Mark these spots with a piece of painter's tape or something else you can use to show the spots after you turn the light on.   

    Now, after finding the fresh piddle spot, it's time to clean it properly. Not just spraying some name brand pet cleaner and wiping.  We at Angel’s Carpet Cleaning support a method of cleaning that flushes and lifts the urine of of the carpet fibers.  The tools that will be needed will be a small shop wet Vac.  ( if you have not bought one we recommend the rigid _______).  A 1 gallon spray bottle, (we really like the Chapmin 1 gallon sprayers,) they can easily be purchased at Bi Mart for around  $12.  Next, you can easily make an all natural cleaning solution using ½ gallon of water, ½ gallon of White vinegar, two tablespoons of baking soda, and a teaspoon of lemon juice for scent (optional).

    Now, simply pump up sprayer and spray the area while using the shop vac to immediately vacuum up the solution and the Pet urine that is now diluted and being flushed out with the cleaning rinse solution.  Repeat the process until you feel the area is completely cleaned and rinsed (see short Video).  This method combined with frequent UV light inspection, and most important as soon after the accident as possible, will keep your carpets in good shape.   It will also keep the urine from saturating the pad which later will require more specialized procedures by a Professional Carpet Cleaner. There is more we add to blog post but feel free to call us anytime for Free advice at 541-373-0350

Why we DO NOT use a lot of Deodorizers!

What-   Deodorizers

Why-   Why we don't use deodorizers often. When dealing with Carpets and and in some cases Upholstery, we all know that there are instances when even after cleaning , there can be lingering odors. These odors can be caused by many different reasons.  Some of these can be described as the the infamous wet dog smell, the musty smell, even worse is the Pet Urine smell.   Even after a Carpet has been Steam Cleaned in a proper way, sometimes these odors can persist after cleaning. There are several reasons why this could happen. Soils, dog dander, and other particulates can vibrate deep down into the backing area and even thru to settle between the pad and carpet backing, if vacuuming is not done often enough.  (see Pictures) (see article on “how often should I vacuum”) In other cases involving pets, young dogs in training and older dogs with loose bladders could be release their liquids into carpets.  

    Overtime, if not cleaned immediately and in a proper way, these deposit can go deep into the pad of the carpet.  After a steam cleaning, during the evaporation process, very small molecules that cause odor will be drawn to the surface of the carpet.

How-   Many Carpet Cleaning services advertise for add-on deodorization service for solving any issues for odor.  These deodorization services can help with odors but can mask still insisting issues with the carpet. We believe that if there is an odor, rather than just adding deodorizer, a 2nd or 3rd Stage of Cleaning needs to take place.  This may involve special Treatments for Pet Urine, or 2nd stage Low moisture cleaning after the initial steam Cleaning.  In some cases we like to use Natural of Oxygen by doing Ozone Shock Treatments.

    More could be written on the details of these different stages of Cleaning, but they all deal with permanently removing the molecules causing the odor, instead of temporarily masking them with deodorizer.