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European Fine Hardwood Floors

Enjoy a Blessed Christmas and a Hopeful New Year

By Valera Tomescu, Founder & President of European Fine Hardwood Floors

On behalf of my family, I would like to take this opportunity to thank so many of you for your support and encouragement that has helped to make our American dream a reality. We are truly grateful – not only for the freedoms we enjoy, but also for the opportunities we have had to make our own contributions to our beloved community and our great nation.

I have many fond memories of my childhood in Europe. My grandfather, a master woodworker, shared with me the same skills that had been passed on to him – old-world skills that have been practiced in Europe for centuries and the same skills that I rely on today at European Fine Hardwood Floors. I am grateful to my grandfather for instilling in me a strong work ethic, a love for family, honesty, and integrity. At European Fine Hardwood Floors, we have combined these old-world skills I learned as a child with today’s state-of-the-art technologies.

European Fine Hardwood Floors can offer a dustless refinishing experience by using the latest in industry advances. Our high-volume vacuums are placed outside your home, directly connected to our refinishing equipment, and remove more than 99% of the dust commonly created with hardwood flooring refinishing. Our company has been recognized by Bona, the world’s most respected name in the hardwood finishing industry, as Certified Bona Craftsmen. European Fine Hardwood Floors is honored by this distinction, as very few hardwood flooring contractors have earned this much coveted designation. With our skills and the patented Bona dustless system, all we leave behind are beautiful hardwood floors!

So whether you are considering refinishing your home’s existing hardwood floors or installing new hardwood floors, I would like to personally invite you to discover the European Fine Hardwood Floors difference. Why not make a New Year’s resolution today to rediscover your home’s showcase quality hardwood floors? We can help you make this a totally dustless reality.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each of you from European Fine Hardwood Floors and the Tomescu family!

European Fine Hardwood Floors
865.640.3680
www.knoxvillehardwoodrefinishing.com

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Personal Space Construction

Let There Be Light!

The Many Benefits of Natural Light

By Susan Davis, Owner of Personal Space Construction
 
Did you know many of us spend more than 90% of our lives indoors? As winter approaches and the days get shorter, Personal Space Construction is frequently asked about the different ways to bring additional sunlight in to make our clients’ homes lighter and brighter.
 
In addition to acting as a natural disinfectant by reducing harmful bacteria, sunlight is essential to our well-being, and the health benefits are many, including boosting vitamin D, warding off seasonal depression, and improving productivity.

The “sunshine vitamin,” vitamin D – an important nutrient that prevents bone loss, reduces the risk of heart disease, weight gain, and various cancers – can only be absorbed through our skin with the help of sunlight. Thankfully, it doesn’t discriminate based on whether you get your sunlight indoors or outdoors. Those with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a very real mood disorder, can be very strongly affected by the lack of sufficient periods of natural light. And regulation of our circadian rhythms of wake and sleep intervals can also be altered by our exposure to natural sunlight.

Fortunately, there are quite a few options for ways in which natural light can be let in to our homes. If budgeting allows, you could install additional windows or replace solid exterior doors with windowed ones. Adding ceiling skylights or solar tubes is a budget-friendly way to increase your interior sun exposure. Even the selection of your interior finishes and paint colors, along with well-placed mirrors, can bring more healthful sunlight in to a space. With so many choices, it is often beneficial to have a professional help you decide which solutions are best for your home. 

As an experienced architect and licensed general contractor, we are well qualified to help you evaluate the best solutions for bringing more light in to your house to create a healthier, happier, more comfortable, and more sustainable home. From an interior design standpoint, the lighter and brighter the room, the more comfortable and inviting it is. So if you are wanting to increase your home’s value while increasing you and your family’s health benefits, contact us for sustainable home design ideas that focus on maximizing natural light.

Personal Space Construction
865.271.7998
www.personalspaceconstruction.com

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Meadow View

November in the Garden

Fall has finally arrived, and it has been lovely! Temperatures are nice, trees and shrubs are donning their fall colors, and gardeners can work in their yards without having a heat stroke.

There is a lot to be done, so let’s get started.

» Stop pruning unless we have had a hard freeze. I have probably told 50 people during the past couple of weeks that they shouldn’t prune yet, and it breaks their hearts every time. I know that when leaves start dropping it triggers this urge to start chopping, but please resist. A hard freeze will tell the plant it is time to go dormant, and wouldn’t you prefer to be asleep if someone is cutting on you?

Once we have had a hard frost, please call us or research before you start whacking. Don’t prune spring flowering plants or they won’t flower. Don’t prune Hydrangea macrophylla. Don’t commit Crepe Murder! We have handouts on pruning, or you can go to utextension.tennessee.edu and print off an info sheet. An informed pruner means happier, healthier, and prettier plants.

» Many of you are still planting, and you can keep that up. Trees and shrubs can be planted if the ground isn’t frozen. You have probably heard to “dig a $20 hole for a $5 plant,” so let’s talk about correct planting.

1. Dig your hole twice as wide as your root ball but no deeper. Put the soil on a tarp or wheelbarrow.

2. Mix the soil that comes out of the hole 50/50 with a good planting mix or soil conditioner. Why the mix? If you dig a hole in the clay and just fill with the planting mix, you have made a big clay bowl. It will hold water and the roots will hit that clay wall and turn around. A mix prevents that.

3. Use your fingers or a claw to loosen up the roots on your plant, and I do mean loosen them up! Once a root is the size of a pencil, the direction of growth has been set. If the plant is horribly rootbound, use a saw to remove the outer 1/2″ or so. For ball and burlap plants, we now suggest you remove the burlap, because some growers are using synthetics that do not decompose. You can leave the wire cage, but keep in mind that if you ever have that stump ground, the cage will destroy the grinder.

4. Place your plant into its hole and backfill with the soil mixture. Press the soil firmly around the root ball. Don’t plant too deep! It is best for the root ball to be at or slightly above the level of the surrounding soil.

5. Water your plant well and use a root stimulator to help feeder roots establish. Mycorrhizae can also help with root growth.

6. Continue watering any week that we do not get 1″ of rainfall. Rain has been abundant this year, but you cannot depend on that continuing. We have no idea what Mother Nature will send next!

7. Apply mulch no more than 3″ deep. Donuts, not volcanoes! Don’t pile mulch around the trunk or you will encourage disease, critters, and air roots.

» If you didn’t do a good cleanup of your beds last month, do that now. Clear out debris and cut back dead or dying foliage on perennials. Remove annuals that are still in place and replace them with pansies or violas. Pull up weeds and apply Preen or another pre-emergent. Make sure you are getting up any leaves that had disease or insect problems so they don’t overwinter in the soil.

» Replace annuals in containers with pansies or evergreen foliage to get ready for the holidays. There are countless good ideas in magazines, on TV, and on Pinterest for you to follow, or let us help you make good choices.

» Some of you are dealing with lots of leaves. If possible, chop them up with your mower and put the chopped leaves around your plants. It is a wonderful natural fertilizer. If it isn’t possible, get the leaves off your grass. If you can’t see the blades, your lawn is suffocating.

» Fall is a good time to gently fertilize trees and shrubs. It is best to use an organic product so you don’t shock them or simply add root stimulator. Most root growth (up to 85%) occurs during fall and winter, so a little boost is helpful.

I will finish with a reminder that we are a great source for Christmas décor. Our cut trees and greenery come from a family-owned farm in North Carolina, and our poinsettias are grown on my family’s farm in Pall Mall, TN. We have a wonderful selection of ornaments and gifts as well, so stop in and do some Christmas shopping with less traffic and fewer crowds!

Meadow View Greenhouses & Garden Center
9885 Highway 11E
Lenoir City, TN 37772
865.986.7229
www.meadowviewgreenhouse.com

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Surface Doc

Last Call for Outdoor Surface Cleaning in 2020

By Christina Fitzwilliam, Co-Owner of Surface Doc

Homeowners that really want to stomp out dirt, grime, mildew, and traffic patterns often understand that the cleaning must start outside and must be done before it gets too cold this winter. Those that neglect the outside cleaning may not truly break the cycle of soil INSIDE the home. This is because when we walk from our car or street into our home, we track soil from the outside right through the indoor areas that have just been cleaned. When ALL soil, dirt, and debris from walkable routes is removed from surfaces outside the home, noticeable traffic patterns take much longer to appear INSIDE the home, keeping it cleaner for much longer.

Almost everyone around Knoxville knows that Surface Doc is the best at cleaning tile and grout, but surprisingly, we still have clients that do not know that one of our most in-demand services is exterior surfaces. We are also experts at cleaning walkways, docks, pool decks, and composite decking. We specialize in soft wash for your home’s exterior, including cedar shakes, stucco, vinyl, brick, and roofs made of asphalt, shingles, slate, clay, and metal. Once your outdoor surfaces are clean, many areas can be sealed and protected from the abuse of Mother Nature.

A word of caution: Stay away from traditional pressure washing! Traditional pressure washing actually causes harm, and a proper mixture of the correct cleaning chemicals, appropriate heat, and adequate pressure are the only way to get real, lasting results. Each walkable surface has its own set of challenges. Sidewalks are often damaged by algae, foot traffic, or vegetation. Driveways tend to accumulate ugly oil stains and lose their luster over time. Wood and composite decking become dangerous as algae embeds deep within the pores of the wood, inviting a slip – especially when surfaces are wet. Or it can become dry and brittle if it has not been cleaned and sealed properly. But what ALL these surfaces have in common is that they can each be easily damaged by traditional pressure washing. We can’t begin to tell you how many well-meaning homeowners have inadvertently pock-marked their own sidewalks or splintered their decks trying to pressure wash them.

Each problem area requires a unique solution… inside AND outside the home. At Surface Doc, we are specifically qualified to tackle each element and the challenges they present. Please give John and his team a call today, and see the difference they will make INSIDE and OUTSIDE your home tomorrow.

Surface Doc
865.567.1986
www.surfacedoc.com

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ShelfGenie

Add Real Value to Your Home and to Your Life

The kitchen is probably the hardest working room in your home. We all want it to be beautiful, but it’s where we cook, bake, gather, and store essentials like food, supplies, and pots and pans, so it has to be functional. A well-thought out kitchen has plenty of storage to keep countertops clear and is designed so you can quickly and easily find what you need and conveniently reach it.

ShelfGenie is the true turn-key leader in kitchen innovation

At ShelfGenie, we design, build, and install custom Glide-Out™ shelves for your existing cabinets and pantries. They increase storage by up to 50% and pull out their full depth so you can access the entire shelf front to back. Each shelf can hold up to 100 lbs and is made in America using high-quality materials and superior craftsmanship. We do not use one-size-fits-all, big box store substitutes.

Our process begins and ends with the homeowner

1. Our design consultant will get to know your exact needs during our free, in-home consultation and will provide you with a free 3-D design of your kitchen so you’ll see exactly what your new kitchen space will look like.

2. Your Glide-Out™ shelves will be manufactured in our very own manufacturing facility to your exact specifications.

3. Our licensed, professional installer will then install your order in one day. Finally, your designer will reach out to ensure you’re completely 100% satisfied.    

Enjoy your innovative new kitchen

Turn frustration with your kitchen into joy. You can expect to increase storage, reduce clutter and wasted time looking for items, and avoid having to bend, twist, or reach into the backs of cabinets.

What our awesome clients have to say

“Awesome folks to deal with. Great workmanship.” – D.A., Knoxville

“We love the new shelves. They are truly life changing in the kitchen.” – R.K., Knoxville

“Great improvement to what I had and very happy with the people I worked with.” – S.O., Vonore

“I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my new kitchen pull-out shelves. Very professional.” – K.B., Powell

“Love my new pantry shelves! They are sturdy and beautifully installed. Great customer service and friendly folks.” – M.M, Loudon

To learn more or to schedule your free consultation, call 865-409-1197 or visit www.shelfgenie.com.

ShelfGenie ®
865.409-1197
www.ShelfGenie.com/East-Tennessee

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PremierGarage

Gear Up Your Garage for Winter

Winter is just weeks away, and it’s time to get prepared for colder, wet weather. PremierGarage of Knoxville offers custom solutions to make your garage more functional this winter, as well as the rest of the year. An organized garage will help your family be more comfortable and safe, protect your vehicles and belongings, and enhance your home with a combination of garage storage cabinets, wall-hanging systems, and a durable PremierOne® floor.

Garage Storage Cabinets Eliminate Clutter with Custom Organization

Garages are famous for clutter, the catchall for anything that doesn’t have a “place” or fit in the house. Stacks of random stuff take up valuable floor space – meaning parking your car outside and then scraping frost and ice off your car windows – ugh!

Custom garage storage cabinets capture unused vertical space, providing maximize safe storage for all your needs…

  • Enclosed cabinets with adjustable shelves allow you to configure your storage for exactly what you have – seasonal decorations, warehouse club bulk items, sports memorabilia, etc.
  • Optional locking doors and drawers keep toxic chemicals and dangerous tools secure from children and pets.
  • Create a mudroom at the connecting house door so wet coats and boots don’t make it inside.

Wall-Hanging and Overhead Systems Provide Even More Storage Space

Along with garage cabinets, wall-hanging systems and overhead racks make your space more efficient by getting everything off the floor so you can actually park cars in the garage – yay! Overhead storage racks are the ideal solution for seldom-used and large items like camping gear, off-season sports equipment, and holiday decorations.

Slatwall panels create wall-hanging storage that can be customized with specialty hooks, baskets, and shelves to organize large and small items

  • Panels fit perfectly over a workbench to keep tools handy or around windows and corners, providing usable storage.
  • Related items, like soccer gear or gardening tools, can be grouped in one accessible spot.
  • Specialty hooks safely and conveniently accommodate large items like bikes, golf bags, and wheelbarrows.

Garage Flooring is Functional and Beautiful

PremierOne® industry-tough garage floor coating makes your garage a more beautiful space and is extremely low maintenance. PremierOne® floor coating has a 10-year warranty and…

  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • Stands up to the heat and friction of hot tires
  • Is stain and slip resistant
  • Helps reduce allergens

PremierGarage of Knoxville is committed to helping people live better lives through better and safer organization in every area of your home.

PremierGarage
powered by Tailored Living
865.947.8686
www.TailoredLivingKnoxville.com

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Tailored Living

Plan the Perfect Pantry
An Essential in Any Kitchen

As we spend less time eating out and more time at home due to the pandemic, the coronavirus has reintroduced many of us to our kitchen. As many local homeowners have discovered, their pantry wasn’t designed to maximize the storage they need.

“While newer houses often have a larger pantry space, the size of your pantry doesn’t matter as much as organization,” said Kathryn Norton, co-owner of Tailored Living of Knoxville. “A well-designed small pantry often provides better, more convenient, and functional storage than a poorly designed larger pantry.”

No matter its size, today’s pantry should be:
» Convenient – Located at or near the area where food is prepared.
» Visible – Everything in the pantry can be seen at a glance.
» Accessible – Every item can be easily reached and removed without having to move anything else out of the way. Heaviest items, like a mixer, should be close to the floor and least-used items at the highest point.

When designing the layout of your pantry, Tailored Living believes what works best for the homeowner is a design that fits their lifestyle. Tailored Living design consultants will discuss with you how you want to utilize your pantry. Some of the questions a designer may ask are:
» What will be in the pantry besides food? Do you want to store dishes, serve ware, table linens, grilling items, or cleaning supplies in the space?
» Do you entertain a lot and need to store party supplies?
» Do you have a specific design style in mind?
» If you have the space, do you want a countertop – often called a landing area – to put bags of groceries on or, if there’s an outlet in the pantry, everyday items like a coffee maker?

Other pantry elements to consider are drawers or pull-out baskets. Incorporating baskets makes it easy for kids to see and get the food they like to eat or to store large-bulk items like onions or potatoes. Drawers are perfect for linens, grilling utensils, napkins, or any smaller items. Slide-out spice and wine racks add convenience. How much you’re able to customize depends on the size of your pantry.

Whether your pantry provides a walk-in space or is a reach-in, Tailored Living of Knoxville listens to your individual or family’s needs to design a space that works well for your lifestyle. Their job is to design and install a well-organized pantry that brings order to chaos.

Tailored Living featuring PremierGarage
865.947.8686
www.TailoredLivingKnoxville.com

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Shelf Help

Increase Your Home’s Storage Efficiency and Love Your Kitchen Again   

Whether you’ve wished your home’s existing kitchen and bath storage were more efficient, or if you’ve experienced difficulty in reaching items, Shelf Help offers the perfect solution.

At Shelf Help, we work with homeowners to plan, design, and install custom roll-out shelving and organizers that can be placed directly into your home’s existing kitchen and bath cabinets or pantries, providing you with much easier access, better organization, and maximum use of your available storage space.

And for those who may experience challenges reaching cabinets that are too low, too high, or too deep, Shelf Help allows you to make full – and far more efficient – use of your storage spaces.

Here’s how we’ve helped a few recent clients:

» Rather than having to awkwardly bend and stretch to access your lower cabinets, Shelf Help can install roll-out drawers that fully extend and bring your items to you, providing easier and safer access.

» We custom-build roll-out drawers that maximize storage and access in bathroom vanities, vertical dividers to make reaching and storing heavy glass cookware or sheet pans far easier, and offer solutions for those nearly impossible to reach corner kitchen cabinets.

» For fixed-shelving pantries where it’s not possible to reach or see all your items, we convert to easy access roll-out drawers that hold 100 lbs. per shelf and bring everything to you!

With our built for you roll-out shelving, organizers, and pantry storage systems, everyday tasks are made simpler with easier access to kitchen and bath items. And with the added advantage of optimal usage of storage space – a place for everything and everything in its’ place!

Homeowners also appreciate how affordable Shelf Help is, saving 50% or more when compared to national brands. Our clients are so pleased with the results that they say, “We should have done this years ago!” 

As experienced Knoxville-area kitchen and bath design consultants and as a locally-owned business, Shelf Help has the understanding and know-how to evaluate, design, measure, and professionally install solutions tailored to your needs – and budget.

To learn how you can better organize your kitchen, bath, or pantry, call today to request your free, no-obligation, in-home consultation. Mention this article and receive up to $250 off with a minimum purchase.

Locally owned and operated, let Shelf Help make the most of your home’s kitchen, bath, or pantry storage space.

Shelf Help

865.675.5098

www.ShelfHelpTN.com

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Undercover Systems

Create Four Full Seasons of Out-of-Door Staycation Family Fun

Set course for 12 full months of family staycation fun out-of-doors with the professionals at Undercover Systems, who can provide you with unlimited events that the entire family can enjoy all year-round, regardless of the weather.

Now is the perfect time to install the totally unique and patented underdeck ceiling system from Undercover Systems under your home’s existing raised decks. This underdeck system will ensure all of this year’s staycation events will be protected from unexpected and unwanted rain and the searing summertime sun.

“Now is a great time to weatherproof all of your out-of-door events,” said Jim Conn, owner of Undercover Systems. “Throughout the entire process, our skilled craftsmen work with you, each step of the way, until your project is completed to your satisfaction.”

Undercover’s patented underdecking system helps extend your outdoor season of enjoyment by protecting your family year-round from the sun’s potentially harmful rays and unexpected rain. You’ll also appreciate their attention to detail, which comes from years of experience, as they help you craft a seamless transition from your home’s interior to your new out-of-door living spaces using their custom made components designed to fit your home and not the generic off-the-shelf, one-size-fits-all components used by the competition.

A complaint-free member of the Better Business Bureau, Undercover Systems offers homeowners the peace of mind that they deserve in a building contractor.

Why not surprise your family with a special out-of-doors staycation gift that the entire family can enjoy all year long, and start creating a lifetime of memories today? Call Jim Conn at 423-267-0091 today and let the fun begin.

Undercover Systems

423.267.0091

www.UndercoverSystems.com

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Closets for Mckenry

Prepping for the School Year with Organization
By Carrie McConkey, www.carriemcconkey.com

“Getting organized” is something we all know we should do, but often the activity gets pushed aside to make room for more pressing priorities. Perhaps we need to move the endeavor up the list. Clearing clutter, creating systems, and developing routines can reduce stress and ward off depression – useful benefits in times such as these. And for children experiencing a very different academic school year, getting organized can be a lifesaver.

Room to Think
An environment freed of clutter allows a child to focus on the task at hand – be it schoolwork or renewing playtime. Having the space to spread out with a project creates feelings of safety, security, and clarity. And family schedules can progress smoother when storage zones are designated and regularly maintained, allowing everyone to find what they need, when they need it. Establish fun incentives for your child to regularly go through their room, backpack, etc., putting things back where they belong and discarding or donating items they no longer need or use.

All Systems Go
Creating systems is another form of organization that teaches children how to streamline regularly occurring activities. Closet organization makes it easier to get dressed in the morning, and using a calendar to keep track of assignments and special school events prevents those dreaded “day of” surprises. A whiteboard can list reminders, reachable goals, and to-dos. And encouraging your child to proactively add needed supplies, food, or other items to the family shopping list can teach them how to anticipate and plan ahead.

Step One, Two, Three
In times of uncertainty and distraction, established routines can offer a sense of peace, normalcy, and direction. Routines teach organization through a set of established steps, calming children through repetition and giving them the triggers they need to perform a task. A designated quiet place to study can ready him or her to begin their homework, just as washing their hands can prepare them for a meal. A 10-minute evening routine of tidying, making sure lunch ingredients are on hand, and laying out any needed school supplies and homework can give everyone a head start on the following day.

In this climate of upheaval and change, the simple concept of organization can provide a school year advantage for children and equip them with skills that will last a lifetime. Call Closets by McKenry for imaginative organization solutions that will benefit the entire family.

Closets by McKenry
201 Center Park Drive, #1070
Knoxville, TN 37922
865.249.6382
www.ClosetsByMcKenry.com

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