Plan in style with Blue Sky Planners

As summer starts to fill up with all sorts of fun activities, what better way to keep track of it all than with a pretty planner! Luckily Blue Sky has you covered with tons of gorgeous choices in both style and design, that start in July 2015.

Blue Sky planner with flamingo pen

I love this calendar above because it has tabs, and nice big days to write events on! It’s the perfect size for my desk too, you could say it’s the “Goldilocks” size because I find it to be “just right”!

Blue Sky offers a lot of fun choices for styles and colors in their Suzy Jack collection. The collection of planners, calendars, clipfolios and binders come in a variety of contemporary and abstract prints. I especially love the simple, nature-inspired designs. After all, a planner should be pretty as well as functional, right?

Suzy Jack planner collection with Blue Sky

I have really loved the clipfolio as a planning tool I didn’t know I needed! It’s so convenient, especially for planning special events, holidays, and projects. Being able to have recipes or any other info you need right at your fingertips is really helpful.

Blue Sky clipfolio

You can find out more and see all the pretty designs on the Blue Sky website. They are also available in stores (I saw them in my local Target).

Do you love planners? Do you like it when they start on the academic year (July-June) or do you prefer to start in January?

Disclosure: I received product for use in my review. As always, my opinion is my own.

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Homes that make a difference, a letter from the U.S. EPA

Guest post By Jonathan Passe, Director of EPA’s ENERGY STAR Residential Branch

“Home is where the heart is.” “There’s no place like home.” “Home is your sanctuary.” These are all phrases that we’re familiar with when it comes to talking about our homes. But what about the fact that when you’re relaxing in the comfort of your own home, you could also be fighting one of the most pressing issues facing our country? The threat of climate change.

The message of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan is clear: the time to act on climate change is now. With more than 17 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions coming from the energy we use to power our homes, both current and potential homeowners have an opportunity to contribute to the cause, simply by purchasing and living in more energy-efficient houses.

EPA House Graphic

Most people had no idea about the environmental impacts of their homes back in 1995 when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency first introduced ENERGY STAR certified homes. Over the past 20 years, ENERGY STAR has been a driving force of increased consumer demand for energy-efficient homes. Today, the ENERGY STAR blue label is recognized as a trusted symbol for thousands of quality products and well-built energy-efficient houses.

Homes that receive the ENERGY STAR label undergo stringent and systematic certification processes to ensure that each home meets the EPA’s strict energy efficiency requirements. These include:

  • A thermal enclosure system with comprehensive air sealing, quality-installed insulation, and high-performance windows to deliver improved comfort and lower utility bills.
  • A high-efficiency heating, ventilating, and cooling system that’s designed and installed for optimal performance.
  • A comprehensive water management system to protect roofs, walls, and foundations from moisture damage.
  • Energy-efficient lighting and appliances that keep utility bills low while providing better performance and longevity.

These energy efficient features allow ENERGY STAR certified homes to be up to 30 percent more efficient than standard new homes. As the ENERGY STAR Certified Homes program celebrates a 20-year milestone, we are granted an opportunity to look at all the program has accomplished.

On average, an ENERGY STAR certified home emits 3,700 pounds less greenhouse gas than a standard home. And in the past 20 years, homeowners have collectively saved $4.7 billion on their energy bills while reducing carbon emissions by more than 53 billion pounds. That’s equivalent to the carbon emitted from consuming 61 million barrels of oil.

If you don’t live in an ENERGY STAR certified home there are still many steps you can take to improve your home’s energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR Home Advisor is a great tool for improving energy efficiency in the way that works best for you and your specific needs. If you want to see suggested updates to make in each room of your house try the ENERGY STAR @ Home tour and see the potential for savings in common household items.

As we’ve seen, simple choices made by everyday homeowners help move us forward on our journey towards a better environment. And ENERGY STAR is here to help by making it simple for homeowners to make energy efficient choices.

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Happy Father’s Day

I just wanted to pop in real quick and give a shout out to all the awesome dads in the world. I lucked out when I got my dad. He has a fun sense of humor, and a generous heart. It’s been hard to watch him struggle with the after effects of three strokes, but we are so happy to have him with us.

Me and Dad

Me and my dad… making faces of course.

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How to make a home safer for older people

Here are some important tips to help keep a home safer for older people. There are some great tips that can be helpful if you have older loved ones, or if you want a safer home for yourself.

How To Make A Home Safe For Older People

How To Make A Home Safe For Older People [Infographic] by the team at Bluebird Care

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