• Explore Canada with the 2017 Parks Canada Discovery Pass

    Apr 19, 2017

    It’s Canada’s 150th birthday this year! Celebrate living in one of the greatest countries in the world with a free 2017 Parks Canada Discovery Pass. As part of numerous activities celebrating our century and half birthday, Canadians can enter and explore Canada’s incredible National parks coast to coast, free of charge.

    iStock-94994231To participate in this amazing opportunity, we recommend that you order your pass online before your arrival for faster entry and greater convenience. Canadians can access all of Canada’s national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas operated by Parks Canada, including historic canals and waterways (including free lockage, a pass similar to the parks pass).

    Please keep in mind that regular fees still apply for other experiences and services including the following: camping, backcountry, and other accommodations, admission to Canadian Rockies Hot Springs, boat mooring, reservation fees, guided tours and hikes, and programs not usually included with admission, firewood, and backcountry overnight use.

    With spring’s arrival, and summer just around the corner, there’s no better way to celebrate our country’s birthday than by exploring its majestic landscape with a Parks Canada pass. With 46 national parks to choose from, Timbercreek Communities brings you this shortlist of our favourite national parks to visit in Canada.

    Banff National Park

    In the fall of 1883, three Canadian Pacific Railway construction workers stumbled across a cave containing hot springs on the eastern slopes of Alberta's Rocky Mountains. From that humble beginning Banff National Park was born, Canada's very first national park. Spanning 6,641 square kilometres of valleys, mountains, glaciers, forests, meadows and rivers, Banff National Park is one of the world's premier destinations. Get more info here.

    Bruce Peninsula National Park

    Bruce Peninsula National Park is an incredibly beautiful national park in Northern Ontario. It features rocky terrain, steep cliffs and panoramic views of the bright turquoise waters of Georgian Bay. The area is home to black bears and rare reptiles. The park is full of ancient cedar trees, orchids and ferns. If you plan to camp there, you’ll get a free show from the stars above in this Dark Sky Preserve.

    Kejimkujik National Park and Historic Site

    On the southern tip of Nova Scotia lies Kejimkujik, an old growth national park and historic site. There’s a bit of a debate about the name’s meaning, ranging from the Mi'kmaq translation for "attempting to escape" or "swollen waters", and the park's official stance that Kejimkujik is a Mi'kmaq word meaning "tired muscles". Either way, Kejimkujik’s hemlock, sugar maple, and yellow aspens, quartzite shores, and white sand beaches won’t disappoint. Paddle the waters, hike the trails and discover the rich diversity of Kejimkujik this summer. Learn more here.

    Point Pelee National Park

    For central Canadians, Point Pelee National Park is not to be missed. Located at Canada’s most southerly point, Pelee boasts a lush Carolinian forest oasis, complete with canoeable marshes, miles of boardwalk, and incredible wildlife. Point Pelee is full of songbirds in the spring, and the hum of cicadas in summer, it flutters with Monarchs in the fall and is a peaceful place to retreat inn  the winter. For wine lovers, the area is also home to numerous VQA wineries. See more here.

    Forillon National Park

    Forillon National Park is arguably one of the most breathtaking national parks in Canada. It offers the best of land and sea, featuring cliffs with jaw dropping ocean views and dense forest land. Located in Eastern Quebec near New Brunswick, Park Forillon is a great place to hike or go snorkelling and watch seals play.

    Take advantage of this incredible opportunity while you can.

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

  • How to Keep Your Stainless Steel Clean

    Apr 18, 2017

    Stainless steel is beautiful, but it smudges easily. It can even, strangely, become stained. Don’t despair! It’s easy and inexpensive to keep your steel stainless and smudge-free. Timbercreek Communities has some great tips for how to keep your stainless steel clean.

    iStock-543215990Vinegar and Oil

    Vinegar and oil is not only great for salad dressing, it also leaves your stainless steel gleaming! Don’t mix them together though, you need to apply the two ingredients separately. You can use mineral oil, olive oil or other vegetable oil. The first step is to determine to determine the direction of the grain, it will either be vertical or horizontal. Go with the grain.  Pour a small amount of oil on a microfiber cloth and polish in the direction of the grain. Next, pour a small amount of white vinegar on the other side of the cloth (or use a new cloth) and wipe off any remaining smudges, again, in the direction of the grain. You’ll be left with shiny steel!

    Dish Soap and Baby Oil

    For this 2 step process you’ll need a couple of soft, non-abrasive cloths, and a little dish soap and baby oil. Dampen your first cloth and apply a little dish soap. Clean the steel along the direction of the grains. Going against the grain will not damage the steel, but you won’t get the clean, gleaming shine that you’re looking for. When you’re done cleaning the steel, wipe up any water streaks before polishing (with the grain) with a couple of drops of baby or mineral oil on a cloth.

    Club Soda

    Is there anything club soda can’t clean? Put a little club soda in a spray bottle and spray directly onto the steel, then wipe it away with a cloth in the direction of the grain. This will remove fingerprints and residue, and give your stainless steel a nice shine.

    Glass Cleaner

    A big complaint with stainless steel is all the fingerprints. You can quickly remove them by using glass cleaner, such as Windex. It’s not recommended that you spray it directly onto the appliance, as you may end up with drip marks and residue. Spray a small amount onto a cloth and apply it in a circular motion. Rinse thoroughly with water and another cloth and dry with a clean towel.

    Your stainless steel just wants to shine! Timbercreek Communities hopes these tips help you keep your stainless steel clean and bright.

    To learn more about Timbercreek Rental Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Petiquette 101: Important Pet Safety Tips For Spring

    Apr 11, 2017

    While it’s a little early for t-shirts and sunscreen, the days are getting longer and the clocks have sprung ahead. It’s important to keep our animal friends in mind as spring begins. From cleaning products to open doors and windows, spring plants, and other seasonal changes, hazards to our pets increase. To keep your pets safe and sound, Timbercreek Communities has some important safety tips for spring.

    Steer clear of standing water

    From algae to mold, dirt, oil, heavy metals, and giardia, standing water (puddles, eaves troughs, ponds, poorly draining backyards) can present a danger to pets. While their digestive systems tend to be less sensitive than humans, pets can still get sick from drinking contaminated water. Try to keep an eye on your yard, and keep an eye out for standing water pockets on your walk routes.

    Keep spring cleaning materials high up

    Cleaning products contain a ton of toxic chemicals and need to be kept out of reach of your pets. Consider keeping your cleaning stuff in a high place. If you’re like a lot of people, you keep your cleaning solutions under the sink, or on a shelf next to the laundry. For your pet’s safety, relocate any and all cleaning products to a high shelf or cabinet. Keeping them out of reach will prevent accidental ingestion (and vet bills!).

    Avoid toxic plants

    Lilies can be fatal to cats if ingested. The ASPCA also lists Azaleas, Tulips and Sago Palms as having “systemic effects on animals and/or intense effects on the gastrointestinal tract.” While both dogs and cats gnaw on grass and succulents for added vitamin content, it’s important to be aware that these and other common greens can give your pets trouble. Get more info here.

    Keep Easter chocolate out of reach

    While delicious for humans, chocolate is toxic to cats and dogs. Throw in that cute little plastic grass that comes with many Easter basket packs and you get a real pet hazard. Inform your kids about the dangers of both items. They shouldn’t have trouble keeping their chocolate safe, but remind them to keep it out of pet reach.

    Screen your windows (cat safety)

    Even indoor cats love the prospect of outdoor freedom. With spring weather comes open windows and doors, which present an irresistible seduction to the adventurous pet. Get a jump on spring by installing screens on windows to deter your cats (dogs, birds, salamanders) from roaming the neighbourhood (sad as it might be for them!).

    Watch out for fleas

    Spring is flea and tick season. Luckily for you, knowing is half the battle. The best prevention is cleaning your pet’s bed, sleeping and hangout areas, vacuuming your home, and watching your pet for telltale flea and tick behaviour (scratching, biting, licking, shaking). Click here for more info.

    shutterstock_260692589At Timbercreek Communities, we know how much you love your pets and we hope that these important safety tips for spring keep your pets happy and healthy this year.

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

  • The Best Easter Main Courses

    Apr 10, 2017

    Spring has sprung and it’s almost time for Easter! The big day falls on Monday April 17th this year. If you’re planning a feast with family and friends at your Timbercreek home, Timbercreek Communities wants to help out in the kitchen with some delicious recipes for the best Easter main courses.

    iStock-177695439Crown Roast of Lamb

    This Crown Roast of Lamb is an impressive cut of meat for a special culinary occasion. It’s perfect for an Easter dinner. It’s prepared in about 45 minutes by arranging two racks of lamb in semi-circles and cooking for 8 to 12 minutes per pound with minced garlic, fresh thyme, coriander, and rosemary. The video will help guide you along.

    Sugar Glazed Ham

    An old fashioned Sugar Glazed Ham, with it’s sweet golden brown coating, is a fabulous main course for Easter. The sweetness of the brown sugar is complemented perfectly by the mustard and vinegar. Best of all, it only takes 5 minutes to prepare, so you’ll have more time to spend with your family while it bakes for 1 ½ to 2 hours.

    Wild Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna

    This hearty Wild Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna is an excellent vegetarian Easter entree.

    It’s loaded with five pounds of fresh (or frozen) spinach and 3 pounds of wild mushrooms, and topped with a Madeira wine and parsley sauce. Frozen spinach can be used in place of fresh in this recipe.

    Salmon with Dijon Dill

    This Salmon with Dijon Dill will make a refreshing change to your Easter Holiday meal. The rich sauce is made with butter, dill, Dijon mustard, shallots and white wine. The sauce is a rich addition to the delicate flaky fish. This dish only requires 20 minutes of hands on time and another 20 minutes of cooking time.

    Lemon-Thyme Split-Roasted Turkey

    The classic pairing of lemon and thyme gives this Split-Roasted Turkey a springtime feel that is perfect for your Easter feast. The split-roasting method also saves time when compared to a traditional roast turkey. You’ll need 30 minutes of prep time and only an hour and a half to 2 hours in the oven.

    Happy Easter from Timbercreek Communities!

    To learn more about Timbercreek Rental Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Car And Bike Share Services That Make Life Easy

    Apr 05, 2017

    Car and bike sharing services have changed the way we get around. They've made transportation more accessible, and turned the concept of ownership on its head. Car and bike sharing, gives you access to convenient transportation for a few hours to go to a meeting, a dinner party, or to see the city. While having your own ride is hard to beat for maximum convenience, occasional use transportation is way more affordable. Check out this list of 5 car and bike sharing services that make life easy from Timbercreek Communities.

    Car2Go

    With Canadian locations in Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal, Car2Go is an incredible option in the care share scene. Featuring easy app booking, no surge pricing, and affordable rates, they can't be beat. Car2Go cars are two-sweaters that are easy to park and require a small amount of fuel. Learn more here.

    iStock-497639642Bike Share Toronto

    With 2,000 bikes and 200 stations, Bike Share Toronto is making an impression. BST has a fleet of incredibly solid bikes available along major city thoroughfares and subway transit stations, and presents affordable pricing programs including $7 day passes, $15/3-day passes, and a $90 annual memberships that offer unlimited 30-minute rides. Though it is still focused mainly in the downtown core of Toronto, BST is branching out to serve bigger swaths of the city. Get more info from their website.

    Enterprise Car Share

    Enterprise Car Share offers services in major Canadian cities, including Toronto, Regina, Saskatoon, and Sackville. A small annual fee in addition to hourly or monthly rates are available, in addition to a vast range of car choices. Enterprise Car Share’s rates include fuel and insurance. See more here.

    Zipcar

    With membership rates as low as $7/month or $70/year, Zipcar is an incredibly affordable care share program. Zipcar is used across Canada from London, ON., Kitchener/Waterloo, Toronto, and Ottawa. Members have access to all 10,000 vehicles including hybrids in more than 470 cities worldwide. As with most services, Zipcar’s rates include fuel and insurance. See more at Zipcar’s website.

    With so many amazing sharing options available, there's no need to own a car or bike in 2017. We hope that this list of 5 car and bike sharing services that make life easy will make your commute or unexpected errands a breeze. For even more resources and info about car and bike sharing in Canada, please check out this article.

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

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