Sunday, November 6, 2016

An Unexpected Treat: Luxury Living In The Heart Of Illinois

About 45 miles northwest of Chicago you will find the charming community of Crystal Lake. Named for the lovely lake that lies just southwest of the city's downtown area, Crystal Lake is the largest suburb in the Chicago metropolitan area. Although many of the home's in Crystal Lake are typical of any Chicago suburb, there are some that are exceptional. 

The Lazy Willow
Among these luxury homes for sale in Crystal Lake, Illinois you will find the unexpected beauty of the Lazy Willow. The one-of-a-kind residence was originally built in 1930 as a log cabin and the 14.6 acres of woodland and pastoral hills were used as a hunting ground. In 1998, the home was replaced with the current 5,400 square feet luxury property residence. The enchanting luxury cottage is nestled at the end of a long driveway just past an idyllic wooden bridge. The cozy brick chalet sits atop a cascade of spectacular landscaping and is surrounded by fantastic views, ponds, and waterfalls. 

The French country interior of the home is accentuated with natural timber beams and boasts five bedroom suites, six full baths, and four fireplaces. Additionally, the home's 5,400 square feet of finished living space adjoin more than 1,000 square feet of storage, a spa room, two enclosed porches, a patio, one wrap around deck, two outside decks, waterfalls, and more than 200 acres of conservation area. The 15-acre property includes six acres of lawn for sports, four large water features. a swimming pond, and a private beach. 

Wait There's More 
It may seem strange, but the Lazy Willow is not the only luxury home located in the area. A close competitor for the title of "Most Stunning Home In The Crystal Lake Area," the home located at 9408 North Muirfield Drive is a beautifully designed waterfront estate located amid six quiet acres of private land. The large estate has an open floor plan and boasts more than 12,00 square feet of luxurious living space. 

One of the most captivating features is the home's Swarovski crystal lighting and chandeliers that illuminate the home's stunning interior. The home includes a theatre, an in-ground pool, a patio, a wrought iron gazebo, a private boat dock, and much more. 

These Rare Gems Are Awaiting An Owner
Obviously, these homes are extraordinary examples and architectural excellence within the Crystal Lake area. Nestled within the beautiful city along the lake, these special homes are just awaiting an equally unique buyer.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Make Your Company More Cutting Edge And Competitive With These Business Strategies

If you want your company to be more cutting edge and competitive, the key to success is accessing strategies that will make it happen. With that idea in mind, consider using the following techniques to take your business to a new level of prestige and power:

1. Pay Attention To Your Staff.

Your staff is one of the most important business-building assets you have. In addition to shaping your company culture, employees play an integral role in determining how prospective customers view your brand. As such, it's important to pay attention to your staff and do all that you can to facilitate their personal and professional growth. Some of the strategies you can deploy to realize this objective include:

  • offering online learning courses
  • accommodating work schedule requests 
  • promoting from within 
  • requesting feedback through questionnaires

2. Update Your Equipment.

In addition to paying attention to your staff, make sure that you update your company's equipment on a regular basis. This is a wonderful way to ensure that your daily operations are completed in a highly efficient, expedient way. Regularly updating your equipment also decreases the likelihood of work-related accidents. In the event that your company makes use of commercial freezer parts, you can obtain them from online retailers such as

3. Put Your Health First.

One final strategy you should consider deploying to get your company moving forward is to put your health first. Many business owners overlook wellness when they think about strategies that can help their companies become more cutting edge and competitive. Don't commit this oversight. When you lack energy or are chronically ill, your ability to effectively manage your company will decrease drastically. The solution is simple: access and implement health-building techniques that will keep your company moving forward. Some strategies to consider include:

  • drinking a green juice each day 
  • meditating 
  • implementing an exercise program which includes cardiovascular activity, weight-lifting, and stretching 
  • giving back to your local community 
  • keeping a gratitude journal 
  • removing all processed foods from your pantry


If you want your company to be more cutting edge and competitive than ever, you can accelerate the process by using proven growth strategies such as the ones listed above. By paying attention to your staff, updating your equipment, and putting your health first, you will likely find that you are able to see the ongoing business growth that you desire.

Bunny Softy from Socks

Each week, me and my not so little girl try to do crafts together. This is my way of bonding and spending quality time with her and an avenue for her to develop her creativity. Since we went away for the weekend during the Easter holidays, we opted to make something with an Easter theme when we got back. My daughter so loves everything cuddly and soft to the touch and I found this very great idea on Pinterest on making use of old baby socks to make bunnies out of them. So we rummaged through her closet and luckily found a few pairs that were already too small for her.

And this is what we came up with:

I did most of the sewing since it needs fine stitching. My daughter did the filling and drew on the cheeks. 

Ain't she cute? This also makes a nice gift for babies but be sure to use brand new socks. :)

If you want the detailed tutorial on how to make the sock bunny, click here.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Calculators Aid In Utility Budgeting

The calculator is one of the oldest still-useful tools people possess in their daily lives. It can be used offline in a variety of ways, from adding up bills and paying them to estimating taxes. Online calculators have almost made lives easier by estimating entire budgets and giving a full layout of what finances look like. Utility calculators remain one of the single best calculators for household budgeting. All households use water, electricity, and trash services to function smoothly. Thanks to modern calculators, you don't just get a bottom line number to work with. You have a vast array of analytics to help you budget more effectively from month to month.

Monthly budgeting

Nothing is quite as critical to a smoothly functioning household as budgeting. By knowing what you can or can't live without, you make sure that the money you need for vital services like water and electricity are there even if nothing else is. Most households live month to month or paycheck to paycheck. If money has to last for two weeks, sitting down and planning out how much bills are going to be is essential for peace of mind. Utility calculators are among the most important because no one wants to live without electricity or water. These are the things that aren't negotiable in the budget. Thankfully, online calculators help to make these easier to estimate. While no bottom line is going to be 100% accurate and you should always leave room for more than the bottom line, these can help you give an idea of where your extra money can be spent and where it must be saved.


The convenience of online calculators is well known. You plug in numbers and they give you a realistic output for what you're budgeting. Complexities vary. Some calculators will just estimate a utility charge for the month based on your current usage while others will go through 12 months of bills and give you detailed graphs and expectations for the coming year. Statistics are important because they give you expectations for the future based on the reliability of prior usage. 

Thanks to the old technology of calculators combined with the new technology of the Internet and analytics, people can budget ahead like never before. Click here to learn more about this or simply begin testing the waters.

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