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YOUR HOME   -   EXTERIOR LOOKS
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As boundaries between indoor and outdoor living areas continue to blur and the outdoor room concept grows, it's no wonder the realm of fabric choices offered to consumers has become increasingly sophisticated. You need to be picky when choosing your new cushions or umbrella to ensure it will hold up in our warm climate. Choosing the wrong material will be a costly mistake; your bright red umbrella will be a pale shade of its former self in a couple months.
Problem #1: You Need More Space but don't want to Move
Solution: by Greg Aliano of Top Construction 775-9945
When deciding between entering a struggling housing market or upgrading their existing home to work better for their family, many homeowners are selecting the second option. In these cases, "add ons" often are the solution.
Few people can muster much excitement about the process of home improvement. Images of plans, contractors, dust, hundreds of fabric swatches and new furniture dizzily circle through our heads when confronted with the potential task of revitalizing our space. Combine that potential stress with work, kids and "life" and it's no wonder why so many put off the task all together.
We live in an area where wildfires are simply a seasonal fact of life. Every year we hear about how we should do something to keep our homes safe, but it's so easy to let it slip down on the list of priorities. This year there was no avoiding the impact of those fires. Admittedly these extraordinary wind-driven fires overrode even some well-cleared areas. Sometimes, even the best preparation is not enough. But the fire department confirms that your chances of safely surviving a fire season by simply clearing brush and keeping to wise, fire-resistant planting can, indeed, tip the odds hugely in your favor. And there's another factor to consider: you can actually create a fire-resistant garden in any style that is just as beautiful as a non-resistant garden!
When's the last time your backyard party concluded with a fireworks show? If you're Marisa Robbins, you're answer would represent pretty outstanding frequency. After all, Robbins Westridge home, conveniently located on a view lot on a quiet cul de sac, provides VIP seating to Magic Mountain's nightly summer fireworks display.
If you are one of the thousands of SCV residents taking off for a night or a month away this summer, take heart - Santa Clarita residents enjoy crime rates that are well below the national average, meaning that your home and belongings are probably safe while you are gone. According to FBI statistics from 2003, the City of Santa Clarita experienced a total of 681 burglaries and 2,003 larceny or theft claims in a year.
On November 13, 2004, PFC Cole William Larsen, 19, lost his life in the Iraq war. His mother, Christi Larsen, takes comfort in the memorial garden she created in her backyard in Cole's memory. "To this day, when I am out there digging in the soil preparing to plant or scatter seeds I will unearth little green soldiers or small army trucks that my son once played with when he was a boy. It's a peaceful place for me full of happy memories," she says.
Let's face facts: Santa Clarita weather and soil aren't the perfect combination for a succulent English garden. Instead of fighting against nature, work with it. The following plants can all be grown successfully in Santa Clarita, and without a ridiculous amount of care. Choose your favorites and get planting!
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