• Decorating your Home for the Holidays

    Nov 21, 2017

    The holidays are fast approaching! Deck the halls, the walls and the table with festive holiday decor that is easy and cheap to create yourself. Timbercreek Communities wants to help put you in the Holiday spirit with some ideas for decorating your home for the Holidays.

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    Peppermint Twist

    Adorn your door or any wall in your apartment with this festive and easy-to-make Peppermint Wreath! All you’ll need is some red or white duct tape, a Styrofoam wreath form, floral wire, a few bags of peppermint candies, ribbon, tape and glue.

    Non-Electric Light Garland

    Capture the festive glow of holiday lights without electricity with this Vintage-Look Holiday Light Garland. It’s made by dipping inexpensive bulbs in craft paint to create the illusion of illumination! Wait until the paint dries, glue the bulbs to tinsel, and string it up wherever you like!

    Snow Terrarium

    In just a few minutes you can create your own Holiday Snow Terrarium! This lovely display is made by filling old Apothecary Jars with faux snow, mini-lights and decorative pieces of your choice! You’ll love the warm and festival glow they create in any room, and the glow they give to others when you give them as gifts!

    Put On a Pot of Potpourri

    This recipe for potpourri isn’t a decoration, exactly - although it’s beautiful and full of colour! Decorating your home for the holidays is all about creating a warm, cozy and inviting atmosphere. A big part of creating that atmosphere is the aroma. The smell of cinnamon and spices, vanilla, cranberry, tangerine, and pine gently warming on the stove will tie together the overall feeling you’ve created with the decor!

    Happy Holidays from Timbercreek! To find your home on one of Timbercreek’s Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Hot chocolate, 5 ways!

    Nov 20, 2017

    The weather is cool, crisp and comfortable. It’s perfect for long walks in cozy sweaters and makes cozying up with a cup of hot chocolate feel great! To keep your hot chocolate options interesting this season, Timbercreek Communities presents hot chocolate, 5 ways!

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    Nutella Hot Chocolate

    For a hazelnut twist on traditional hot chocolate, switch out the cocoa for nutella and make Nutella Hot Chocolate. It’s so easy! In a small saucepan, combine milk and nutella over medium high heat. Whisk together until smooth and creamy. For an extra creamy treat, serve with a dollop (or two) of whipped cream.

    White Hot Chocolate

    The White Hot Chocolate trend is red hot right now, and for good reason - it’s delicious and easy to make! Make your own by mixing together chopped white chocolate, your choice of milk (almond, rice, or half and half cream) with vanilla extract. If you want to go the extra mile, try this homemade vanilla extract. Stir the mixture over medium heat until it simmers -- don’t let it boil! Serve it with marshmallows and whipped cream for an over-the-top treat.

    Oreo Hot Chocolate

    Take hot chocolate to the next level with this Oreo Hot Chocolate recipe. Yes, it is as good as it sounds! We’ve all done the oreo dunk. This drink infuses every sip with that same great flavour! To make it, blend milk with sweetened condensed milk, cocoa, cornstarch and of course, Oreos! Heat more milk in a saucepan and add in the Oreo milk mixture. Whisk it together over medium low heat for a few minutes and serve.

    Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate

    Before you enjoy this amazing Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate you’ll need to prepare the Salted Caramel Sauce! Store it in the fridge and use it to make a mug at a time, and also enjoy it on ice cream, toast, oatmeal - or anything else! Mix together milk, caramel sauce and finely chopped dark chocolate and stir over medium heat. When it becomes a thick and rich liquid it’s ready to serve.

    Peppermint Hot Chocolate

    This Peppermint Hot Chocolate is cool and refreshing, and warm and relaxing, all at once! It’s made by combining milk, cream, sugar and salt in a saucepan over medium-low heat. As the mixture starts to steam, stir in finely chopped chocolate. As it thickens, add the peppermint oil and serve with whipped cream and some chocolate shavings.

    Timbercreek hopes that these  decadent hot chocolate recipes help make fall even cozier! To find your home in one of Timbercreek’s Communities, please visit our website.
  • Where to Buy a Winter Coat Suited for Canadian Winters

    Nov 13, 2017

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    Canada may be best known internationally for brutal winter weather, and it’s not a misconception. It gets super cold here! Even though temperatures across the country often dip below zero in winter months, many Canadians choose fashion over function and find themselves freezing on blustery days. Timbercreek wants you to stay warm and stylish this winter so here are a few places to score a great winter coat suited for Canadian winters this year.

    MEC

    A Canadian retail icon for outdoor wear (and much more), Mountain Equipment Co-op is unsurpassed in the country for quality and selection when it comes to winter coats and apparel. If you visit their website you will find a ton of winter coat styles, weights, colours, sizes, materials, and functions.  Their coats are made beautifully to endure all that winter throws at us. With customer-owned structure, eco-friendly buildings, and ethical practices, it also feels good shopping there.

    SportChek

    A bit of a sporting goods underdog, SportChek offers more than just running shoes and salespeople with ear pieces. Depending on the location, SportChek offers everything from boxing and MMA gear to snowboards -- not to mention a quality selection of winter coats. With all major brands represented, SportChek also does a decent job with prices, especially in pre and off-season times. It is definitely worth a look.

    The Bay

    In the spirit of Canada’s 150th, the Hudson’s Bay Company deserves a spot on our list. Almost all major brands are available at The Bay, with regular and significant sale prices and specials offered every season. Coats are no exception. Check out great coat options for men and women here.

    Roots

    Another tried and true icon of Canadian retail is Roots. They do more than just sweatshirts. From packable down jackets to cotton zip ups, leather coats, composite shells, and more, Roots is a great retailer to consider when shopping for winter wear. While their prices can be in the higher range, their products don’t skimp on quality. Learn more here.

    Winter is coming and Timbercreek hopes that this article helps you find your perfect winter coat this season. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Petiquette 101: Game of Thrones & Huskies

    Nov 07, 2017

    If you haven’t come across them, Huskies are that stunningly beautiful dog breed associated with Northern Canada, the Iditarod, and most recently “Game of Thrones”. They are medium sized, lithe, strong, and cute. The Husky breed has received a lot of attention recently due to their role in the hit HBO drama. The show features “Direwolves” -- mythical and massive wolf-like creatures. Huskies are the real-life breed that bear a striking resemblance to Direwolves. Eager fans of the series are buying huskies without thinking through the responsibilities and requirements that come with owning them. Before you buy a Husky, Timbercreek has some valuable information about the breed and the current issues facing it and potential owners.

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    Misplaced Fan Adoration

    The Direwolves featured in Game of Thrones have inspired many fans to buy Huskies. Unfortunately, they’re quickly realizing something any dog-owner comes to realize: dogs are a lot of work. They need several walks a day, food, shelter and love. Before you buy, ask yourself honestly, are you ready to be a dog owner?

    Husky Pros

    Huskies are amazing. While not the largest breed, huskies are still medium-large sized, and are athletic. They love to run and jump, and they’re agile and energetic. As their legend goes, they also love the cold weather. Romping in snow in sub zero temps is fun for a husky. They’re known to be loving, not aggressive, and are usually good natured with humans and some other dogs. See more here.

    Husky Cons

    If under-exercised or bored, Huskies are known to howl, chew things, run away, or otherwise cause damage. They also have strong chase and grab instincts, so cats, birds, rabbits beware. They shed and require constant coat maintenance, are rowdy and strong willed, and have been known to not get along with smaller dogs - so owners need to exert discipline. Find out more here.

    Bills

    Pet owners are never shy talking about food costs and vet bills. From heartworm to teeth cleaning, kibble to car cleaning, pets are a money pit. And don’t even start on middle of the night animal hospital costs. Without insurance, owning a pet can be a nightmare. 

    Adding up to reality

    Huskies are increasingly being purchased, and then abandoned, by owners who are attracted to the breed because of Game of Thrones. From England to the U.S., reports of Husky abandonment are on the rise. The work required to own any dog sometimes comes as a shock to new owners. Interestingly, the success of the "Harry Potter" franchise led to a wave of abandoned pet owls, while "101 Dalmatians" had the same effect on that breed. Would-be owners need to think first before buying any pet of any kind. Even a goldfish needs feeding. Read up, ask questions, and see if the breed might be a fit for you before getting one because you love Direwolves. You and the dog will be happier for it.

    Timbercreek hopes this article sheds some light on the beauty of Huskies, and on the real-life responsibilities of owning one. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Black Friday: How to Navigate the Crowds

    Nov 06, 2017

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    Black Friday is considered the beginning of Christmas shopping season, with major retail stores offering huge promotional sales. Since 2005 it’s been the busiest shopping day of the year! The name originally referred to the blackout of car and pedestrian traffic in city centers caused by post-Thanksgiving shopping. If you’re ready to brave the shopping storm, Timbercreek has a list of ways to navigate the Black Friday crowds like a pro this year.

    Make a List Prior to Going Shopping

    Narrowing down a set list of what you want or need can cut your shopping time in half, and reduce the amount of time you wait in lines and dodging wide-eyed shoppers. This is tough to do; one of the things with flash sales like Black Friday is not knowing exactly what will be on sale. While almost every retailer advertises incessantly before Black Friday, they still like to draw shoppers into their brick and mortar locations by offering surprise sales on items only available in-store. Stay strong, stick to your list and save yourself a headache this year.

    Don’t Take the Kids

    Let’s face it; your kids slow you down. In retail stores where space is tight and hordes of people race through the aisles and checkout lines, keeping track of your kids can be a nightmare. It might be best to shop solo on Black Friday. Even if you’re picking up items specifically for your kids, it’s easier to do it with them safely and happily at home.

    Arrive Early

    Showing up in the mid-afternoon or early evening on Black Friday is near-insanity. At the very least, you’ll be looking at empty shelves, and crowded aisles. Show up early and beat the rush. Stores tend to open even earlier on Black Friday. You might have to wait in entrance lines, but you’ll generally run into fewer people and have a better chance at snagging the items you want.

    Shop Online

    Avoid the Black Friday crowds by skipping the madness! While Cyber Monday seems like it has the online side of retail sales more or less wrapped up, Black Friday is pretty much the same. Most of the promotions and products you’ll find in the store will also be available online, and as always with e-commerce, there’s no need to negotiate crowds, deal with cash, or worry about getting your purchase home.

    Want to avoid the masses on Black Friday? We hope these tips from Timbercreek help you make the most of your shopping experience. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

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