We have been replacing our bedding slowly this spring.  Usually the weather just turns and we are able to pull the wool comforter and flannel sheets off in anticipation of the hot summer to come.  But this year we have been cycling our bedding as the weather got warmer and then colder every couple of days.  I finally feel like we can make the change permanent (at least for a couple of months).  Summer brings changes to the house too.  We are now seeing dirty windows because of the increased sun and dust is starting to show up as it is exposed to the bright light of summer.  We only hope that our show helps keep you in front of all the chores so you can spend your free time enjoying this belated summer sun.

Organic Bedding

Organic products are hot!  People are looking to help the planet and be good stewards of the earth.  This need to be green also applies to products in the bedroom.  We paid a visit to Eclectic Home (503-224-0551) in NW Portland to learn about organic pillows and talked to Dennis Rose to learn how to find the best organic products.  The first thing Dennis did was to set us straight on the reasons for buying organic.   You should look for comfort before you look for sustainability.  Don’t just go into the store and squeeze the pillows, think about your body type and what would work well for your frame.  Also, with organic pillows, think about the material.  Pillows are made of wool, buckwheat and cotton among other materials that could help with your allergies and sensitivities.  Dennis then had David take a pillow to one of their beds to try it out.  Once David was in his normal sleeping position Dennis was able to see that the pillow didn’t help put his body in alignment.  Once again proving Dennis’s point, comfort first and then sustainability and at Eclectic Home you can get both.

Indoor Iron Furnishings

We have visited Grande Valley Ornamental Iron (503-981-6923) before to see their great line of trellis’s and arbors.  This time we stopped by to check out their selection of indoor iron furnishings and accessories.  Jan joined David to show us just a few of the different things made of iron to complement your home.  Iron has been used for centuries for inside the home.  Tables, chairs and large decorative pieces are what we usually think of when it comes to indoor applications.  These days the look and durability of iron comes in all shapes and sizes.  Wall hangings, towel bars and even wine racks are just part of the new wave of decorations that can be made out of iron.  Plus iron can fit into any décor, not just rustic or western themes.  It can be very ornate or sleek depending upon your design.  Iron can also be paired with glass, pottery, and even candles to compliment your existing décor.   Grande Valley has worked with lots of local artist too to incorporate different materials into their designs.  One thing that Grande Valley also prides themselves on is that they will custom make anything.  You just bring in your measurements and your idea and they will make it.  If you are looking for a unique iron table and chairs, or even something smaller, stop by and check them out.  They are located on Highway 99W between Aurora and Hubbard.

Iorio Clams

One of the benefits of living near the Pacific Ocean is the availability of fresh seafood.  Right now fresh clams can be harvested on the coast with a little elbow grease and some local knowledge!  Still there is that chore of cleaning your catch once you bring it home.  To get some tips on cleaning and preparing these delicacies we stopped by Iorio Restaurant (503-445-4716).  Tip number one, once you dig your clams transport them home in a bucket of sea water to keep them fresh.  Once home place the clam in a little hot water for a couple of minutes and they will open up and are easily separated from their shell.  Clip off the bi-valve and cut the clam up the ‘zipper’.  Clean out the dark parts and/or hard parts… this will leave the clam pretty much filleted.  Now you can put the clam into a breading mixture (for the complete recipe, including the breading ingredients, click here) and pan fry them in butter and oil.  They can be paired with some great locally grown vegetables.  Iorio uses lots of locally grown veggies on their menu and even offers classes so you can learn how to prepare your own special dishes!  We found the clams to be perfect!  Next time you are at the coast, try your luck digging clams.  Check with your local bait shop or hotel to find the best places to dig.  The limit is 15 per person so buy a license and go dig your dinner!  Better yet, stop by Iorio and have the whole meal! 

Naomi’s Chandelier Cleaning

One of the hardest jobs in the home is dusting and cleaning the hanging lamps and chandeliers in your home.  Anything that is above your head is a problem for most people.  It is hard to see where to clean and to see when you have done a good job.  To get some tips for cleaning these tough spaces we stopped by Naomi’s Lampshades and Lamps (503-636-1884) in Lake Grove and talked to Bea.  At Naomi’s they can cover just about anything that has to do with lights or lamps.  Bea gave us some tips for doing the job right and not damaging your lamp in the process.  The first thing you need to do to clean your chandelier is to move everything out from under the light fixture. Don’t stand on your table to clean, get a nice sturdy ladder.  If you have prisms or crystals hanging from your lamp you may want to take them off one arm at a time.  Don’t try to remove them all and do them all at once.  Wash them in a little ammonia and warm water.  Also when you are cleaning, don’t twist your chandelier, you could unscrew it from the ceiling and it will all come tumbling down.   If you have a large chandelier you don’t have to remove everything to do a good job.  There are now cleaners that you can spray on your fixture to clean it.  The one that Bea recommends is ‘Clean and Bright’.  To prepare for the spray you will need to remove the bulbs and cover the socket with plastic.  You will also want to cover the floor (or table if you didn’t move it) with plastic as well to catch the drips. 

If you have shades that need cleaning use a soft bristled paint brush and lightly ‘paint’ the dust away.  Never use the vacuum to dust your shades, they are too rough and can damage the shade.  If you need more tips for cleaning your lamps or you need any maintenance issues that need to be addressed, just stop by Naomi’s and they can help you out.

Cleaning Outdoor Furniture

It is time to head outside again.  However, the patio furniture is in need of a little cleaning and to help get the job done right we stopped by Ludeman’s (503-646-6409) in Beaverton to see what type of cleaner we should use.  They recommended ‘Feron’s 1 for All Cleaner’.   This product will clean vinyl straps, mesh, iron and even wood.  This product is also biodegradable.  When your outdoor furniture is cleaned then you can protect it with FeronFinish.  This product will help restore the original shine and make everything look like new again.  Stop by Ludeman’s and pick up these great products and then enjoy the outdoors on your clean patio furniture.


Website design and content ©2009-2011 Gustin Creative Group.  Please send website inquiries to gustingroup@comcast.net
This page last modified
July 01, 2011.