• Best Fall Activities for the Kids

    Oct 16, 2017

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    Fall has finally arrived. It’s a special time of year, full of beautiful colours and crisp, cool air. Don’t let this short season pass you by -- Timbercreek has a list of some of the best fall activities for kids.

    Make Handprint Fall Trees

    Your kids will love making these Autumn Handprint Trees. They’re easy for kids of almost any age to make and require very little preparation. All you need is a sheet of white cardstock paper, a pencil, paint (primary colours), paper plate paint palettes, and some Q-tips. Start by tracing a faint line around your child’s hand and arm - this will form the trunk and branches of the tree. Mixing the paint is a great way to teach your kids about colours. Any kid can make brown, just mix them all together! For the leaves, experiment with mixing primary colours to get the fall shades you want. Use Q-tips, the pencil tip or even fingertips to add dots around the tree and watch it transform into something special.

    Go On A Fall Scavenger Hunt

    Getting outside and enjoying the brilliant colours and the cool air is a great way to make the most of fall. Rather than taking the kids out for a regular walk in the park, why not plan a fun Fall Scavenger Hunt! You can turn it into a chance for them to learn, too! This free printable animal camouflage scavenger hunt features frog cutouts. Your kids can colour them in fall shades and you can hide them in the fallen leaves. Set a timer and see how fast your kids can find them, while they learn about how animals avoid predators.

    Paint Some Pumpkins

    Pumpkins are a big and bright symbol of fall. Carving them into Jack O’Lanterns is fun, but not a great activity for younger kids. Put the knives away and break out the paint! The options of what to paint and how to paint your pumpkins are endless! Add some white to the top, some yellow to the bottom, and leave the middle orange for a candy corn inspired look that kids of all ages can create.

    Make Leaf Crowns

    You and your children will have a royally good time creating these Fall Leaf Crowns! All you need are some fallen leaves, a thin strip of cardboard (a cereal box will do nicely), and glue. All you have to do is glue the leaves to the cardboard and glue the cardboard into a circle! It’s fun and easy and it makes your kids feel like kings and queens!

    Timbercreek hopes that that these fall activities for kids help make your family’s fall even brighter! To find your home with Timbercreek Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • The Best Pumpkin Pie Recipes

    Oct 05, 2017

    There is a lot to be grateful for when fall rolls around. There is Thanksgiving, of course, but there’s also the cool, crisp weather, the changing colours and cozy clothes that come with this special season. Fall is also pumpkin pie season! Timbercreek Communities wants to help you savour the sweet and spicy flavour of fall with the best pumpkin pie recipes. Dig in!

    Perfect Pumpkin Pie

    This Perfect Pumpkin Pie recipe is aptly named. Pumpkin pie can be tricky to make. The crust can easily be too soggy, or too dense, and the custard filling can be too gooey, or too spicy. This pie has a light and flaky crust and a perfectly spiced filling that won’t crack when it cools. This tutorial will walk you through each and every step -- with lots of pictures to make the process as easy as pie.

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    Pumpkin Cream Pie

    You don’t have to make plain old pumpkin pie. Mix it up this season and try this Pumpkin Cream Pie. It has all the gentle spice and flavour you’re craving, with a light and lovely cream pie filling. Best of all, it’s easy to make. It requires only 30 minutes of hands-on prep time. The gingersnap cookie crust requires less than 10 minutes of baking, and the filling requires no baking at all - just let it set in the fridge for a few hours.

    Pumpkin Pie with Oreo Crust

    This Pumpkin Pie with Oreo Crust is a sweet twist on the tradition that will be adored by children and adults alike. Your kids will love to help you make it because they will get to crush a bag of Oreos with a rolling pin. Who doesn’t want to do that? Then all you do is pour melted butter into the bag and smoosh it around to make the crust. Fun and easy!

    Chai Spice Pumpkin Pie

    Put a spicy twist on tradition when you whip up this Chai Spice Pumpkin Pie. You can choose to make the Foolproof Butter Crust from scratch, or save some time with store-bought. For the filling, combine pumpkin puree, condensed milk, eggs, brown sugar, vanilla chai spices (cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, clove, nutmeg and black pepper). Beat until smooth and pour into the crust. It needs about an hour to bake and another hour to cool and set. It’s well worth the wait.

    Timbercreek wishes you a sweet, spicy and delicious fall! We hope you give these delicious pumpkin pie recipes a try. To find your home in one of Timbercreek’s Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Petiquette 101: Safer Ways to Prevent Fleas and Ticks

    Sep 25, 2017

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    Fleas and ticks are not only irritating and unpleasant for your furry friends, they can infiltrate your home and are capable of transmitting disease. Many control and treatment products contain chemicals that can be toxic to you and your pet. How do you balance the risks posed by fleas and ticks with the risks of the repellents? Timbercreek Communities want to help with our best advice for safer ways to prevent fleas and ticks.

    Talk to Your Vet

    Before making any decisions about flea and tick control, talk to your vet. They can help you make the best decision for your pet and your whole family. You may want to consider orally administered products to limit your family’s exposure to toxic compounds.

    Citrus Juice

    Fleas are not fans of citrus. Squeezing some lemon, orange, or grapefruit juice on your dog’s fur can get rid of the blood suckers. Be careful to avoid your pet’s eyes and remember that lemon juice may lighten darker hair.

    Regular Baths

    A warm bath can help get rid of fleas and prevent them from returning. Existing fleas will fall off into the water and fleas are less attracted to cleaner animals. You may want to try a peppermint shampoo for a bit of extra protection. Place your pet on a lightly coloured towel after the bath (to better see any remaining fleas), and use a flea comb dipped in soapy water.

    Clean Your Home

    Regular, thorough cleaning of your home can help control fleas and ticks. Vacuum often and change your bedding and your pet’s bedding, regularly.

    Essential Oils

    Some essential oils like geranium, lemongrass, catnip oil or neem may help repel fleas and ticks, as well as mosquitoes and other pests. Be sure to choose high quality oils that can be applied topically.

    Timbercreek hopes this post helps you make safer choices while caring for all the members of your family. To find your home in one of Timbercreek’s Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Outdoor Adventure List

    Sep 19, 2017

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    Whether it’s camping, watersports, hiking, or an intercontinental trip, outdoor adventure is good for body and soul. Adventure is about taking risks, trying new things, and diving in with both feet. Whether it’s across the globe or in your own backyard, adventure awaits. To help you discover your inner explorer, Timbercreek brings you our outdoor adventure list.

    Camping

    Camping is key. From hikes to multi-day backcountry canoe trips, camping brings you back to nature, even if it’s in a car or an RV. Fresh air, sun and wind, water and woods. They cleanse the soul and ground the spirit. And it’s the kind of thing you don’t have to venture too far for. Even city folk can drive an hour or two, set up a tent, and bask in the rejuvenating energy of nature.

    Rock Climbing

    While this point involves considerable skill and also risk of death, it’s a great way to get outside and get your adrenaline pumping. Rock climbing is a sport that involves strength, technique, planning, and courage. It makes you face your fears, try new things, test your skills, and take chances. Best of all, it’s increasingly becoming available in unexpected like indoor climbing gyms.

    Watersports

    Adventure doesn’t have to imply distance. It’s as much a mental state as a physical activity. Doing something you don’t often do, or that can be done close by or in another medium (i.e. water), can instill a sense of exploration even in the middle of the city. Windsurfing, canoeing, swimming, kitesurfing, dragon boating, or paddle boarding: they all remove you from your normal environment and call on different skill sets. They also demand an immediate connection with nature - in these cases - with wind, water, sun, and sky.

    Road Trip

    From RVing to car camping and cross country marathons, road trips are what adventure is made of. Route 66, the Trans Canada, the Dempster highway -- roads are a symbol of freedom, the unknown, exploration, and travel. And cycling definitely counts as well. Multi-day cycling adventures can be just as exciting and promote a more direct and hands-on experience of a particular area.

    Pilgrimage

    A more extensive outdoor adventure, a pilgrimage in the style of Mecca, the Camino de Santiago, or visiting Stonehenge, is an adventure with purpose. With spiritual meaning and physical, outdoor components, an adventure of this sort combines the visceral aspect of moving through a new environment, with the mental component of experiencing new and unseen vistas.

    Timbercreek hopes this article gives you a few ideas for your own outdoor adventure this year. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Best Kid-Friendly Fall Activities

    Sep 18, 2017

    To help keep your little ones smiling this fall, Timbercreek brings you this list of kid-friendly fall activities the whole family will love.

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    Nature Walk

    It’s almost always a good time to go for a walk. Even if you’re subdivision bound, there are always parks close by, or conservation areas a little further away, that can make for a great fall outing. Pack a snack or a full-on lunch, make sure to bring water, and outfit your little ones with some sturdy shoes. Also bring bags for the kids to collect nature items - twigs, rocks, leaves, bark - it can all be fun for nature collections or crafting once you get home. As fall temperatures start to drop, be sure to consider appropriate clothing and layers to make your outing disaster proof.

    Picnic

    Picnics aren’t just for summer. A fantastic fall activity, picnics are great so long as you wear and bring the right stuff along. With unpredictable temperatures, pack some hats and coats. Don’t forget to bring all the usual picnic supplies like frisbees, baseballs, blankets, PB & J sammies, drink boxes, and kites. 

    Pumpkin Carving

    While generally reserved for Halloween, pumpkins are a symbol of autumn. Harvested from September through October, they offer families a great range of activities. Going to a local pumpkin “patch” to pick a few for the house is a great afternoon outing, while carving competitions, roasting pumpkin seeds, and playing with pumpkin “slime” are all great ways to enjoy them.

    Leaf Forts

    Jumping in a pile of leaves is a classic fall activity that never gets old. For kids it’s like an invitation to play and explore. Burying, burrowing, making forts, tossing them all over each other in leaf wars: they all make for great outdoor play that can occupy kids for hours. On a safety note, while obvious, check your leaf piles (before your kid jumps in them) for branches, rocks, garbage, and other debris that can be hiding inside after raking and yard cleaning.

    Baking

    A great fall activity for kids is baking. A couple seasonal snack options are apple chips and roasted pumpkin seeds. Slice some apples in thin, full width pieces and place evenly on a baking tray. Sprinkle them with cinnamon, brown sugar, a bit of butter, and even some coarse sea salt, and bake at 340F until slightly dehydrated and/or golden brown. Let dry and refrigerate for a great snack. Almost the same process can be applied to pumpkin seeds. Clean and rinse a big handful of seeds and lay them out evenly on a baking sheet. Add coarse salt and, if desired, a dash of olive oil, and bake until firm and slightly brown.

    Make Butter

    It’s surprisingly easy to make butter and it’s also a great activity to do with kids. All it requires is heavy whipping cream and a whisk. But by using a Mason jar, two small marbles, and a bit of music, you can dance your way to whipping that cream into butter. Shake a jar (or whisk) until the cream thickens. As the fat molecules bind together, a ball of butter will form, separating from the remaining buttermilk. Once a ball has formed, drain off the buttermilk, add some salt, and voila!  Homemade butter.

    Timbercreek hopes this article gives you a few ideas for how to entertain your kids this fall. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Weatherizing For Your Rental: Keeping Warm In The Winter Months

    Oct 26, 2016

    Timbercreek Communities wants you to enjoy a warm and comforting winter in your apartment. These simple hacks for weatherizing your rental will keep you comfortable when the weather is unbearable. Get ready to get cozy.

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    Draft blockers

    Even top-quality windows and doors can’t always prevent the worst winter winds from sneaking into your apartment. Stop unwanted drafts with draft blockers. Blockers are readily available online for all types of doors and windows.

    Insulate your windows 

    While a draft blocker will cover the bottom of your windows, completely stopping cold air from entering your apartment might involve another level of insulation that covers the entire window. Bubble wrap to the rescue! Start by cutting some bubble wrap to the size of your windowpane. Next, use a spray bottle to spray a layer of water on the glass. Press the bubble wrap onto the glass, bubble side first, and you’re done. The best part of this insulation hack is that it can be easily removed and rehung, without damaging your windows. 

    Flannel sheets

    Flannel sheets are a lifesaver when it comes to keeping warm during the fall and winter months. The fibers that comprise flannel are littered with small air pockets that trap the warmth from your body. Flannel is also a very soft fabric, so you can count on being comfortable and warm through the night. Swap out your synthetic sheets for a layer or two of flannel this winter and thank us later.

    Fuzzy rugs

    If you tend to get cold feet in the winter, a fuzzy rug might be just what the doctor ordered. Save money and stay busy with a fun DIY fuzzy rug project. This pom pom rug project requires a little bit of patience to make, but the result is well worth the effort. If you don’t want to spend much time on a rug project, this braided t-shirt rug is pretty much a no-brainer.

    Electric blankets

    Electric blankets may be the best option for people who get cold easily. Grab a cup of tea, a good book and your electric blanket, and hibernate until warmer days’ return!

    Stay cozy and warm this fall and winter with these great apartment hacks from Timbercreek Communities. For more information about Timbercreek Communities and our rental properties, please visit our website.

  • 5 Fall Cleaning Hacks To Make Your Life Easier

    Oct 25, 2016

    Spring isn’t the only season for cleaning. Fall is a time of transition and is a great time to start fresh with a clean and organized space. If you plan to tackle a little fall cleaning in your apartment, you need these 5 fall cleaning hacks from Timbercreek Communities. These cleaning hacks won’t just help you clean your apartment, they’ll make your life easier too.

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    DIY deodorizing spray

    Whether you have pets or you like to cook fragrant food, a good deodorizing spray is a great addition to your cleaning arsenal. Avoid commercial deodorizing sprays (and their long list of impossible-to-say chemicals) and go natural with this incredible Woodsy, Spicy Fall Room Spray. Bring a bit of the season indoors and instantly freshen any room with this DIY five-ingredient deodorizer.

    Boot storage 101

    Fall means boots are back. Keep your boots in good condition from day one with this great hack. An everyday pool noodle helps you store boots like a pro. Measure your boot, cut the noodle to match the height, and simply insert into the boot to keep your boots upright. 

    Make the most of boxes and baskets

    After you declutter, put what you want to save into baskets and boxes. Create a cute and revisable labelling system for your storage with this DIY project. These Easy Chalk Board Basket Labels are stylish and will help you stay organized all season long.

    Say goodbye to pet hair

    Sometimes the simplest hacks make the biggest difference. Keep pet hair off of your carpet and away from your clothes by brushing your pet’s fur outside your apartment.

    Switch closets

    If you need more room for your fall wardrobe, swap your summer clothing with your fall attire. Start by diligently cleaning your summer apparel. Then pack your tank tops, shorts and flip-flops into transparent storage containers so that you can easily find what you need come spring. Be sure to leave a little room in the container -- clothes need oxygen. Now that you’ve freed up some space in your closet, it’s time to stock it with those sweaters and scarves.

    These fall cleaning hacks will help you organize your space and make life a little easier every day. Timbercreek Communities hopes today’s tips make your fall cleaning routine a little easier.

    For more information about Timbercreek Communities apartments, with locations in five provinces, please visit our website

  • 7 Pies to Bake this Fall

    Oct 20, 2016
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    The days are getting shorter, the leaves are changing colour and there is a cool bite to the morning air. Weather like this that makes you want to dig into a warm piece of homemade pie. You don’t need an excuse like Thanksgiving to bake a pie, all you need are some fresh ingredients and a little quality time in your kitchen in your Timbercreek Community.

    Let’s dig in, shall we?!


    Deep Dish Apple Pie

    Apples are in season right now. Grab a few at your local market and try your hand at baking a classic Deep Dish Apple Pie. Use a combination of tart apples like Granny Smith and sweet apples like Braeburn, or Golden Delicious for best results. Using pre-cooked apples allows you to get twice as many apples stuffed into the deep dish crust.

    Pumpkin pie may just be the perfect fall pie. When prepared well, a pumpkin pie is rich and lightly spiced with a creamy, custard texture. This video will show you how to bake a perfect pumpkin pie, every time. You’ll even learn how to prevent your pie from cracking while cooking.Pumpkin Pie

    Quebec Sugar Pie

    If you haven’t tasted a piece of Quebec Sugar Pie, you need to get on it. In Quebec, it’s called Tarte au Sucre, which means sugar pie. This super sweet treat will satisfy your sweet craving, but enjoy responsibly -- it has a lot of sugar in it!

    Caramel Pecan Pie

    Pecan pie is pretty close to perfection on a plate, but it gets better! Improve on the classic with the addition of gooey salted caramel. This Caramel Pecan Pie is rich, sweet, indulgent and bold. Enjoy a warm slice of this nutty pie with some whipped cream or ice cream and a cup of bold black coffee.

    Butternut Squash Pie

    Many people think pumpkin pie is the best fall pie around. We disagree! We love Butternut Squash Pie because it’s even smoother and creamier than pumpkin pie. It’s simple to make and tastes great on a cool fall day. It only takes about 10 minutes of prep time and about an hour in the oven and a then a few more hours in the fridge to cool.

    Southern Sweet Potato Pie

    Sweet Potato Pie is another close relative to pumpkin pie. Whipped sweet potatoes and sweetened condensed milk combine to create a decadent tasting filling. This pie is a smooth and creamy treat without any of the sharpness or bitterness of pumpkin pie. Serve it warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream on top.

    Apple Crisp

    The cool, crisp days of fall are perfect for Apple Crisp. If you love pie but are a little indifferent to crust, or you don’t have the time to bake a full pie, then crisp may be for you. All you have to do is mix sweetened apples and cinnamon in a bowl and then prepare a simple streusel topping of oats, brown sugar, cinnamon and butter and bake it all for about an hour.

    There’s almost nothing more satisfying than a warm piece of pie in the fall. Pre-heat the oven and put the kettle on. Timbercreek hopes these recipes inspire you to bake some spectacular fall pies.

    For more information on Timbercreek Rental Communities across Canada, please visit our website, today.

  • Top 5 Best Fall Hikes in Ottawa

    Oct 13, 2016

    Fall is hiking season in Ottawa. There’s no better time to experience the beauty and adventure of the great outdoors. Pack a picnic lunch, grab a water bottle and get ready to explore Ottawa starting with one of today’s top five top best fall hikes from Timbercreek Communities.
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    Stony Swamp

    There’s nowhere as ecologically diverse as Stony Swamp in the Ottawa Valley. Classes as a Provincially Significant Wetland, there are over 700 species of plants that call this conservation land home -- over 50 of which are considered extremely rare for the region. Stony Swamp is also an excellent area for birdwatchers. Located less than 20 minutes southwest of Ottawa, the park has over 40 kilometres of hiking trails to explore.

    Shirleys Bay

    The TransCanada Trail is one of the best trails for hiking in Canada. While all 20,000 miles of pathway might be a bit ambitious for the fall, you can experience a sliver of the route at various points in and around Ottawa. One great spot is Shirleys Bay, located west of the city. Shirleys Bay is the largest marshland in the area, perfect for birdwatching or an easy hike through seven kilometres of trails.

    Beaver Pond Trail

    If you’re looking for a family-friendly day trip, the hiking trails at Algonquin Provincial Park have an excellent reputation. Beaver Pond Trail is a two kilometre route that is just difficult enough and certainly beautiful enough to warrant the two-hour drive from Ottawa. This time of year, expect an incredible array of fall foliage here.

    Gatineau Park

    One of the best spots for hiking and enjoying breathtaking views of fall foliage is just a 15-minute drive from Ottawa. Gatineau Park is the perfect spot for a weekend hike. You can also check out Fall Rhapsody while you’re in the area -- an annual autumn celebration that includes family activities and exhibits. 

    Ottawa River Pathway

    You never know when you might want to take a hike -- getting out of town isn’t always an option.Winding through downtown, the Ottawa River Pathway is a great trail to explore that’s located in the heart of the city. The trail is relatively easy to navigate thanks to clearly defined paths. Expect multiple scenic lookouts and picnic spots along the way.

    Before winter catches you off guard, enjoy some time in the great outdoors. We hope you enjoy one of today’s Ottawa hiking trail suggestions from Timbercreek Communities. For more information about Ottawa’s Timbercreek Communities apartments, visit our website

  • 5 Places For You To Visit This October in London & Waterloo Area

    Oct 04, 2016
    We love how many fun places there are to visit in October! From picturesque apple orchards to terrifying fear farms, today’s list of five local destinations for fall fun includes a little something for everyone.

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    Kitchener-Waterloo Fear Farm

    Prepare to be scared. The Kitchener-Waterloo Fear Farm (936685 Blenheim Road) is not for the faint of heart — or anyone under the age of five. This terrifying destination is recommended for fearless 15+ year olds. Fear Farm is open Fridays through Sundays, 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m., all month long. If you survive one of the farm’s five terrifying haunts, treat yourself to the Creep-tastic Candy Park, The Gruesome Autumn Grill, The Freakish Fritter House or the brand-new Blood-Curdling Bakery. Check out this amazing farm early in the evening to avoid lines.

    Bingemans Screampark

    So you survived the Fear Farm, are you ready for something a little more intense? Bingemans Screampark (425 Bingemans Centre Drive) in Kitchener is just a 15-minute drive from Mooregate Apartments (50, 66 & 80 Mooregate Crescent). Last year over 7,000 guests were too scared to complete the haunt. Can you handle it?

    Clovermead Honey and Adventure Farm

    For those who prefer not to be terrified this fall but still want to enjoy a memorable daytrip, Clovermead Honey and Adventure Farm (1302 Imperial Road) is the quintessential family-friendly October outing. Their adorable slogan, “Jump, Play, and Bee Happy,” tells you just about everything you need to know about this Alymer attraction. Activities include a corn maze, wagon rides, jumping pillows and farm animals. Online reservations are encouraged to avoid long lines.

    Kustermans Fall Festival

    Located near London, Kustermans (23188 Springwell Road) is the perfect mix of family-friendly fun (during the day) and spooky festivities (at night). While the sun shines, visit Kustermans for fun for all ages including train rides, giant jumping pillows, zip lines, farmcade games and more. At night, if you dare, take part in your choice of two horrifying haunt tours. Visit Kustermans on weekends in October. The venue will also extend its opening hours on Thursday, October 27th.

    Apple Land Station

    One of the best things about fall is fresh, delicious apples. Pick your own apples, find the perfect fall pumpkin and say hello to the friendly farm animals at Apple Land Station (329 Richmond Street) -- a first-generation farm located near Thorndale. If you pay the farm a visit, be sure to take home a sweet treat from the bakery. Fall festivities run daily with different hours depending on the day. Visit the Apple Land website to learn more.

    We hope you explore these fun places near London and Waterloo this October. Best of all, they are located within a short drive from your Timbercreek Communities Apartment. Want more information about Timbercreek Communities? Simply visit our website today. 

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