July is an exciting time of year full of patriotic celebrations, abundant outdoor activities, and delicious foods. This edition of Good to Be Home features home inspiration, fresh recipes, and shopping tips that can help you have a blast this month.
Second only to hitting the beach, flea market shopping is a can’t-miss summer adventure. Before you hit the road to find your next great piece of furniture or decor, read the enclosed guide to help you navigate and negotiate your way through these massive sales.
After your shopping excursion, you might find yourself kicking back with a cold drink on your patio. However, if the sun is blazing, it could ruin the fun. Use the tips in this issue for keeping your backyard cool to block the harsh sun and feel comfortable while you relax outside.
How functional is your home? If you find yourself constantly rearranging and reorganizing your rooms, then it’s time to focus on improving your home’s functionality. The guide inside will make the process a breeze.
Summer produce like strawberries, squash, and watermelon are at their peak right now. Check out the delicious and simple recipes to take full advantage of the rich flavors of seasonal fruits and veggies.
Here’s wishing you a joyful July. As always, it’s a pleasure to send you this magazine.
Enjoying your backyard is just one of the delights summer weather offers. But if your outdoor area doesn’t offer protection from the sun, you may find yourself running back inside. Use these tips to create a haven that’s a pleasant escape from the heat.
The first step to lessening the heat in your backyard is to track how much sun it gets. You can do this by taking photos of your space from the same spot at various times on a sunny day. Pay attention to areas that get too much light where you’d like to shade. Once you know where and from what direction the sun hits most, you can plan how to best block its rays.
Man-made structures, such as arbors, gazebos, pergolas, trellises, and umbrellas, are quick ways to add shade. These structures can be made of metal, wood, or plastic, and come in a variety of styles and colors. You can also plant flowers or vines to grow on them for added shade and beauty. If you choose to install a pergola or gazebo, fit it with shade cloths, retractable awnings, or sun-blocking curtains. String a sun shade sail from your home, and attach it to trees or posts to shade large areas of your yard.
Planting trees, vines, and shrubs is a natural way to block the sun’s rays and cool your backyard. Oak and maple trees have dense, leafy canopies and are some of the best shade trees. Dwarf varieties like Japanese maple and crabapple are better choices to plant near your patio because their roots are less likely to disturb your pavers or concrete. Climbing plants, such as clematis, grapes, peas, and roses, can increase the shade produced by an arbor, pergola, or trellis and may produce flowers, fruit, and vegetables. Shrubs like boxwood and hydrangea, and tall flowers like sunflowers, can shade smaller portions of your yard.
Furniture made with dark metals and fabrics can absorb heat from the sun, making it uncomfortable to the touch on hot, sunny days. Opt for outdoor furniture made from light-colored wood, plastic, or wicker instead. If you already have dark furniture, cover it with light-colored cushions or look for outdoor pieces with built-in shade, like this wicker outdoor daybed, which has its own retractable awning.
A balcony, deck, or patio can get hot in the sun. An outdoor rug can make the surface feel cooler and softer and add color and style to your outdoor space. Rugs that are made of synthetic materials can usually be cleaned with a garden hose. If you’d like an all-natural outdoor rug, you can choose one made of jute or sisal, but these materials can fade in the sun. Rugs made with recycled materials, such as this one composed of upcycled plastic straws, are another eco-friendly option.
A swimming pool is a surefire way to cool down your backyard, but there are less expensive alternatives. You could add a drink cooler that doubles as a table, or install a misting system to spritz you and your guests with cool water. Running water can reduce the temperature of the surrounding air, so you could consider installing a fountain or a pond. Enjoy refreshing breezes with a ceiling-mounted outdoor fan or use a portable battery-operated one. You could also set up a sprinkler for kids and pets.
With a little planning, you can create a cool oasis in your yard that you can enjoy all summer.
This time of year is all about garden-fresh foods. The best fruits and vegetables are in season and abundant, making it the perfect time to feature them in your meals. These recipes from The Anti-Inflammatory Cookbook are the definition of fresh and wholesome and can help you make the most of the produce available to you this season.
What could be more simple or delicious than grilled chicken topped with vine-ripened tomatoes and fresh herbs? This recipe is a must for your summer lunch or dinner.
Ice cream is a necessity for summer, and this recipe proves it’s easy to make at home! The best part? It’s made from all-natural ingredients and plenty of fresh fruit.
Recipes and photographs from The Anti-Inflammatory Cookbook by Krissy Carbo, RD, courtesy of Cider Mill Press Book Publishers LLC. Copyright ©2021 Appleseed Press Book Publishers LLC
recipe by krissy carbo RD
photos by krissy carbo RD
This dish is delicious, refreshing, and packed with lycopene, an anti-inflammatory carotenoid that helps calm immune responses when triggered.
recipe by krissy carbo RD
photos by krissy carbo RD
We all love ice cream, but we could live without the discomfort, bloating, and aches we get after eating dairy. Here is a recipe for ice cream that you can enjoy without any worries. If you have an allergy to peanuts, you can substitute the peanut butter for almond butter.
In an ideal world, your home would be completely clean and uncluttered and every space would serve a purpose. But if mail is covering your kitchen table or, your closet is stuffed with items you don’t use, your home might not be as functional as it could be. Follow these suggestions so you can get the most enjoyment and use out of your living spaces.
A clean home is a functional home. To make cleaning easier, try sticking to a schedule. You can keep track of it on a whiteboard or notepad, or use an app such as Sweepy. Cleaning aids, such as robotic vacuums and mops, can lessen your workload, as can using your dishwasher to clean household items like vent covers, cooking range filters, and sink strainers. Clean frequently-used areas of your home more often. For example, if you wipe down your kitchen counters every evening, they’ll be ready for use the next day.
Clutter can decrease your home’s functionality. Declutter your most used spaces, and don’t overstuff closets and drawers. It can be helpful to focus on one space at a time. Recycle junk mail and old magazines, repair or throw out broken objects, and donate clothing you don’t wear. Find a new home for items that don’t belong in a certain space. For example, pick up children’s toys in the kitchen and move them to a game room or playroom, and transfer folded laundry from the sofa to dresser drawers.
Ideally, every item in your home should have a spot that makes sense. You should store toiletries in a bathroom cabinet, put pots near the stove, and place your laundry detergent by the washing machine. You can create added space when needed by installing extra shelves in a closet or by using storage baskets for a decorative but practical solution.
You can increase the functionality of your home by adding furniture that serves more than one purpose. In your family room, for example, you could include a coffee table that has hidden storage to stow away items like your TV remote and blankets. A sofa with a pull-out bed and microfiber upholstery or a washable slipcover will be easy to clean and can accommodate guests.
Strategically placed lighting, such as bedside lamps, motion-sensor lights in a stairway, task lighting over kitchen counters, and dimmable lights in a TV room, can make your home safer and easier to navigate. Layering different kinds of light can increase functionality and ambiance. You could combine ceiling lights for overall light, a table lamp for reading, and wall sconces for a soft glow in a bedroom. Don’t forget about window coverings too. Room-darkening curtains can block early morning light, while blinds will allow you to adjust the amount of natural light in a room and add privacy.
Your floors should be free of clutter and other objects. Area rugs and electrical cords are common trip hazards. Secure area rugs with gripper tape or rug pads, and keep electrical cords close to the wall—don’t run them across high traffic areas or underneath carpeting. Having uniform flooring throughout your home is the safest option. If you have various types of flooring, make sure the transitions are smooth. If your floors tend to get littered with toys or other odds and ends, keep a basket handy for containing them.
It can be difficult to use your home’s foyer or mudroom effectively if objects are blocking walkways. Put a coat rack by your doorway and have a spot to store your footwear and keys, wallet or purse, and other items. Welcome mats placed both outside and inside your door can prevent dirt from being tracked in, while a bench will give you added storage space and a place to sit while putting on or removing shoes.
Finally, storing items you don’t frequently use can make your home more functional and free up space. You could put serving plates for holidays and parties in harder-to-reach upper kitchen cabinets, for example, and off-season clothing in under-the-bed containers. You can also create extra storage in unexpected areas, such as by mounting baskets on a bathroom wall to contain towels or placing shelves above doorways to store things you use less often.
Whether your home is large or small, a few simple changes might be all you need to help it better serve your needs.
Whether you call it a swap meet or a flea market, open-air markets with discounted goods are a hard opportunity to pass up—and summer is primetime for shopping at these giant sales. However, it’s important to go into your bargain hunt equipped with the best tips and tricks so you can go home successful and happy with your finds. Remember that the point of shopping from flea-market vendors is to support them and appreciate their wares.
Every flea market will have its own variety of items for sale. Typically you can find home furnishings, clothing, and decor that mainstream retailers don’t sell. The uniqueness of each flea market means it’s important to research which vendors will be there so you don’t waste your time browsing stands for items you don’t need. An easy way to determine whether a market is worth a visit is to look at its website or social media pages to find a list of the vendors and examples of items they’ll be selling.
Flea-market-shopping requires a solid strategy if you plan on scoring great finds. But planning doesn’t have to be complicated—it just requires attention to detail and a positive outlook. These tips can help you prepare.
Like going to the grocery store, making a list before heading to the flea market can keep you focused on your priorities. The items on your list don’t need to be hyper specific, but categories such as bedroom decor and living room furniture can help you keep what you need top of mind.
Invite a friend or someone you know who enjoys shopping as much as you do. Bringing a friend can make the trip more fun but also will allow you to multiply your efforts. You can make better use of your time by dividing and conquering the grounds when you arrive and staking a claim on an item while your friend browses other stands.
The early bird gets the worm—the best deals and items, that is. Depending on the size of the flea market, it can be a good idea to arrive up to an hour early to park close, find a map of the venue, and review your shopping list one last time before entering. Be sure to lower the seats in your car, and lay out a blanket or tarp if you plan on buying big pieces.
Most flea markets put the best deals in the center booths toward the back and on the edges farthest from the main entrance. Due to less foot traffic, the vendors in these spots tend to have deeper discounts and more flexibility in negotiating prices. Resist the temptation to only browse booths that are front and center so you can get the best deals before they sell out.
The way you present yourself and how comfortable you feel can affect your shopping stamina and the type of deals you can get.
Seasoned flea market shoppers will usually suggest dressing down—way down—think running shorts, sweatpants, and t-shirts. The idea is to blend in, so leave your favorite jewelry and designer purse at home.
Chances are you’ll be making a few laps around the flea market. Due to the level of physical activity, it’s appropriate to wear sneakers or other comfortable closed-toe shoes. Keep in mind the terrain might be uneven with dirt and rocks, so protecting your feet can help prevent any mishaps that might cut your trip short.
You probably have a routine every time you leave your house: grabbing your phone, wallet, and keys. But flea market shopping calls for extra steps before you hit the road. The following steps can make your trip go smoothly.
It’s tough to know which vendors will accept cards, but almost all vendors will accept cash and appreciate not having to pay the credit card processing fees. Be sure to bring plenty of one dollar bills and quarters to help make exact change.
You’ll likely purchase more than one item during your trip, so you should bring a sizable, comfortable tote or backpack to store your purchases safely and keep your hands open to browse. Pro tip: bring a collapsible wagon for transporting heavy items. This wagon from Amazon even has cupholders to hold your coffee or water while you shop!
If you’re shopping for someone else, snapping photos of an object and texting it to them is the most efficient way to decide if you should lock in the deal or move on. Additionally, if you find something that isn’t a priority, you can take a photo of it and its location to revisit it at the end of your trip.
Don’t immediately jump on something that piques your interest. There are a things to consider before handing over your cash.
Remember that flea market finds may not be shiny and new, but you can repurpose them. Ask the vendor questions about the material, age, and special care instructions. Their response can help you decide if you can customize it to your liking.
Don’t be afraid to haggle. There are a few tried-and-true methods that you can use depending on the scenario. Always be respectful, and remember that the seller needs to make a living and puts time and effort into presenting their items.