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Credit Card in Wallet

Develop These Money-Saving Habits for the New Year

Credit Card in WalletIt’s common to make lofty financial New Year’s resolutions that don’t quite work out 12 months later. That’s why small, manageable goals sometimes make sense. Here are some money-saving ideas we hope our Promenade Crossing residents in Orlando, Florida will consider.

Reduce Subscriptions

If your coffee table looks littered with magazines that often go unread, think about culling the number down to the ones you really enjoy. Many of the topics can be found online. Similarly, TV, video games and other online expenditures add up. If you take a long look at these things, you can probably trim off $20 or so per month. That could tally up to $240 or more per year.

Be Proactive About Preventing Penalties

Late credit card fees and charges for overdrawn bank accounts can be a significant savings setback. Think about those double-digit fees and how easily they could be avoided. Some financial institutions will allow for hard limits that can prevent overdraft fees. In terms of payments, setting up deadline notifications that ring you up on your smartphone may be wise. Consider a 5-day prior notice so that you are a little ahead of the game.

Save at the Pump

Many fuel stations offer member savings, and these are terrific ways to save a few dollars at each fill-up. Some supermarkets and discount warehouse mega-stores have affiliated pumps that provide rich discounts. But beyond that, consider signing up for a credit card that offers rewards and bonus points. Why not double dip!

Boycott-Your-Wallet Weekend

Many of us think about weekends as a time to relax and catch up on a few light errands. Shopping tends to be one of them. When Friday comes, take a long look at what’s in your refrigerator and think about working with the groceries you already have. Put off buying the latest gadget, clothing item and leisure spending as well. The basic idea of a no-spend weekend is to become more cognizant of the low-cost items that we all spend more on than we really need. Try this once per month and save.

At the end of the day, by slipping small savings-oriented habits into your weekly and monthly routines, you can make realistic 12-month bank.

We hope our Promenade Crossing community members enjoy these money-saving tips. If you or a friend would like more information about our Orlando apartments, call us today.

Baking Soda

3 Cleaning Supplies to Keep in Your Apartment

Baking SodaDo you have so many cleaning products that you can’t remember what they’re all for? Do you ever wonder if they’re toxic to you or your pets? Simplify your life and go natural by using these three essentials for almost every job.

Baking Soda

Baking soda has so many uses, you’ll be left wondering why it’s in the baking aisle instead of the cleaning aisle.

  • Place an open container in the back of your closet to keep mustiness out and your clothes fresh.
  • Dust a little on your mattress to remove dirt and moisture.
  • Mix two parts of baking soda with one part olive oil for a high-powered toilet cleaning solution.
  • Add a little to a vase to keep your flowers fresh and to prevent odors.
  • Leave another open box in the back of your refrigerator to prevent odors.
  • Mix baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to eliminate grease stains.
  • Get relief from rashes and itches by mixing baking soda and water.

White Distilled Vinegar

When you need a liquid shine, vinegar steps in to save the day.

  • Fill a plastic bag with vinegar and tie it around your showerhead or faucet to cut down on residue and grime.
  • Chase a cup of vinegar with boiling water down your sink drains to eliminate odors.
  • Pour one cup into an empty dishwasher and run a cycle to remove detergent buildup and hard water stains.
  • When you have glassware in your dishwasher, add another cup of vinegar to add a shine.
  • Use a 50/50 mix with water for a more environmentally-friendly way to clean your windows.
  • Stop ants in their tracks by spraying that same 50/50 mix along their trails.

Ammonia

For heavier cleaning, ammonia is your friend.

  • Place your stove burners in a sealed plastic bag with a quarter cup of ammonia overnight to melt away grease stains.
  • Mix ammonia and water to shine your floors and lift stains out of your carpets.
  • Scrub ammonia over stained shoes and clothes before washing them to get out tough stains.

Of course, having new, easy-to-clean appliances also helps to get down on your work. Give us a call to see what our Orlando apartments have to offer.

Poinsettia

4 Flowers to Add to Winter Bouquets

PoinsettiaDressing up your apartment with a few winter bouquets helps freshen it up while also adding a touch of color. A winter bouquet can also provide the perfect centerpiece for a seasonal gathering at your home. If you’re planning on putting some bouquets together for the season, consider adding one or more of the following flowers.

Amaryllis

Amaryllis flowers provide winter bouquets with vivid colors that stand out among white or lighter-colored flowers. Whether you choose bright red, pink or both colors for your bouquet, you’ll be adding some cheer to your apartment this winter. You can include these flowers in a bouquet that features winter greenery and smaller white flowers to fill it out.

Ornithogalum

Ornithogalum, also known as Star-of-Bethlehem, flowers are smaller blossoms that work well in a simple bouquet or as part of a larger bouquet, where they serve as filler flowers. These elegant white flowers grow in clusters and can be bunched together in small or large groups. You can expect these flowers to last for about three weeks once they’re cut for your bouquet. Star-of-Bethlehem flowers are the ideal choice if you want to add filler flowers to a larger winter bouquet that has bigger and more brightly colored blossoms.

Poinsettia

Poinsettia flowers are usually seen as potted plants during the holidays, but they can be cut and used for winter bouquets instead. Having poinsettias in your bouquet can brighten up your apartment during the holidays or during the rest of the winter season. Keep in mind that red isn’t the only color that these flowers come in. You can also choose purple ones, marbled ones or orange ones for your bouquet.

Daffodil

Daffodils add a touch of gold to winter bouquets, which contrasts nicely with white flowers. These flowers can give your apartment a warm and inviting look this winter when you use them for seasonal bouquets. Just keep in mind that their sap can harm tulips, so avoid using both flowers in the same bouquet.

Our apartments in Orlando, Florida provide plenty of places where you can decorate with winter bouquets. Please give us a call to learn more about our apartment amenities.

Wine Bottle

What to Include in the Ultimate Care Package

Wine BottleSending a care package from our apartments in Orlando is a thoughtful way to show a loved one that you care. Care packages are great ideas for loved ones who aren’t able to make it home for holidays and special occasions like birthdays. They are also perfect for service people overseas, or for students away at college. Here are some suggestions to include in the ultimate care package for your loved one.

Gift Card

With a gift card, your ultimate care package recipient can shop for necessities that only they would know about. Gift cards can be from their favorite shop, which still lets them know you thought carefully about what to put in the care package, but allows them the freedom to buy what they want.

Wine

For an adult care package that will arrive in the holiday season, a nice bottle of wine will always be appreciated. Opt for a quality wine or a craft wine; something that your loved one might not usually get for themselves on a regular basis.

Caviar

Caviar is an extravagance that will make a big statement in the ultimate care package. Caviar goes perfect with crackers, so include a box of specialty crackers as well.

Book

Have you read a wonderful book lately that made a lasting impression on you? Buy a new print edition and include it in the ultimate care package. Although e-books are popular, the joys of turning the pages of a print book will never be replaced with digital, especially in the hearts and minds of book lovers everywhere.

Cozy Nightgown

Vintage cotton nightgowns are so cozy and inviting, that a gift of one makes a special addition to the ultimate care package. You can find nightgowns in vintage designs online. Just fold up neatly in beautiful tissue paper and wrap before placing it in the gift basket.

Music

A special CD of relaxing music will let your gift basket recipient know how much you care for them. Melodic, instrumental music CDs will always work, or you can include the latest CD from your loved one’s favorite band.

To put the finishing touches on your ultimate care package, place in a beautiful basket with plastic wrap and tie on a big colorful bow. For information about our available floor plans at our apartments in Orlando, Florida, please contact us today!

Grapefruits

Ways to Create Healthy Winter Habits

GrapefruitsWinter presents two problems to the health-conscious person, or to the person whose New Year’s resolution is to be more health-conscious: (1) gloomy, chilly weather; and (2) the flu coming to a neighborhood near you. This year, it is predicted to be a chillier and wetter winter than normal, which is fine if you live at Promenade Crossing, because we offer cozy rooms that can bring in the sun even when it’s raining. That said, there are a few things you can do to create healthy winter habits to counter the chill and illness.

Eat Right to Fight the Blues

If you are healthy, it does not matter if it’s rainy or sunny, your mood is probably good most of the time. To be healthy, though, you need to eat healthily. Stick to plant-based, whole foods as much as possible. Fortunately, at Promenade Crossing, you are a short drive to grocery stores, and our Florida oranges are beautiful this time of year. In addition to oranges, other seasonal fruits and vegetables this time of year include:

  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage cauliflower
  • Grapefruit
  • Mushrooms
  • Pears

Apart from purchasing and eating more fruits and vegetables, you can supplement your immune system with echinacea and elderberry or other herbs and supplements, like omegas. These herbs and supplements help support and improve your immunity and keep illness, like the flu, at bay. Make it a habit to buy smart: buy the right foods and supplements to keep the vitamins and minerals strengthening your immune system and your mood upbeat when you are out and about this winter season.

Exercise Your Way to Healthy Winter Habits

Speaking of being out and about this winter, taking in some of that chilly air can be good for you. At Promenade Crossing, we offer easy access to some beautiful parks, including Baldwin Park. You can enjoy a scenic walk around the lake. Being outside and taking in fresh air is a healthy thing to do. First, it’s kind of like meditation, easing of your mind, as you walk around the lake and take in nature. Second, it gets your heart rate up, and that’s what you want to stay healthy.

The latter is also why we offer a 24-hour fitness center. Determine what time of day works best for you, and start a healthy habit this winter by going to the gym: at Promenade Crossing, it’s open whenever you need it.

Promenade Crossing: Where Healthy Winter Habits are Made Easy

If you are one of our community members, then you know we value both our residents and their health. If you would like to make our apartments in Orlando your new home, stop by our office or call us!

Mushrooms

4 Hearty and Easy Appetizers

MushroomsInformal gatherings are a fun way to get together with friends. You just need a playlist of great music, a variety of refreshing beverages and some hearty appetizers. The following are four tasty treats for your next gathering that are also easy to make.

Garlic Herb Pinwheels

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix two cloves of garlic, two tablespoons of olive oil with a third cup of chopped mixed fresh herbs—for example, parsley or cilantro—in a bowl. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Next, unfold a sheet of thawed frozen puff pastry and place it on a lightly floured board. Spread the herb mixture on top, then roll up the pastry. Then, cut the roll into quarter-inch thick rounds. Place rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes until golden and puffed up.

Pear and Blue Cheese Toast Slices

Spread blue cheese on top of toasted baguette slices. Then, top each serving with several thin pear slices. Fast, delicious and easy.

Mini Pepperoni Pizza Muffins

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Next, spray a ten-cup muffin pan with cooking spray. Open up a ten-ounce container of refrigerated buttermilk biscuit dough, and divide the dough up evenly into ten portions. Press each biscuit portion flat and then place each into the bottom of a muffin cup. Let the dough rest and rise for about five minutes, then press down again. Add a tablespoon of pizza sauce, a tablespoon of mozzarella cheese and a slice of pepperoni to each biscuit. Cook for 10 minutes or until they are lightly browned.

Stuffed Mushrooms

Preheat broiler. Thoroughly mix an eight-ounce package of cream cheese with a 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder, bacon bits and a tablespoon of chopped green onions. Place a pound of fresh mushrooms (stems removed) on a baking pan. Stuff each cap with the cream cheese mixture and broil for about five minutes.

Of course, it’s always easier to whip up delicious appetizers and meals if you have access to a great kitchen. Our apartments in Orlando boast just that—a chef-caliber kitchen with granite-style countertops. Interested? Then please contact us so you can check out our beautiful pet-friendly apartments in person.

Red and Yellow Candles

How to Make Your Living Room Cozier for Fall

Red and Yellow CandlesWinter is knocking at the doors of our Orlando apartments, but we’re not scared! We’ve come up with a few solutions to help our residents stave off the early darkness with fall-friendly ways that will liven up their apartments and create cozy spaces. Take a look!

1. Pile on the Texture

Don’t be shy when it comes to furry feels and soft-to-the-touch textures. Embrace faux fur, plush throw pillows and ultra-soft blankets. Fall is about good feelings and very pleasant vibes; welcoming textures will do their duties when they’re readily available. Toss fuzzy blankets on the back of your couch or swap out your typical throw pillows for soft substances that enhance the senses.

2. Swap Out Your Summer Shades

If your living room is normally decorated with ocean blues and sandy-beach beiges, switch it up! Opt for accents that fall on the warm side of the color grid. Consider adding a gold-and-chocolate color palette to your pristine palace to bring a bit of fall’s rich color scheme into your living space.

3. Light It Up

There’s nothing like the smell of apple pie or toasty pumpkin when fall starts to turn into winter. Fortunately, you don’t have to stay in your kitchen all day to make these aromas prominent in your living room. Candles will do the job for you; just make sure you seek out scents that incite a bit of autumn’s essence, and your living room will easily become an inviting environment.

4. Layer Your Looks

Nobody said you have to be content with a single area rug. Layer your living room with shades and textures that invite good vibes by piling one area rug on top of another. You’ll get extra cushioning beneath your feet while enjoying a living room that’s literally designed with your own unique style in mind.

5. Warm Up Your Space With Fall Accessories

Place an artful pumpkin on an empty shelf or adorn your entryway with a leafy wreath that will wish you a good day each time you open your door.

Are you trying to get rid of the winter blues before they even appear? Start by settling into an awesome apartment community that’s filled with luxe accommodations. Stop by our apartment community near Baldwin Park so we can give you a tour!

White Pumpkin Fall Decor

5 Simple Fall Decor Ideas

White Pumpkin Fall DecorAre you looking for quick and affordable ways to spruce up your Orlando apartment for fall? These five easy DIY decorations will make your pad the envy of the neighborhood!

1. Create a Rustic Centerpiece in Minutes

Spruce up your centerpiece setting with the look and feel of fall’s splendor by creating a showstopping natural decoration. Simply gather some colorful fall leaves and use some neutral colored wire to hold them in place to create a garland strand. Situate it atop a festive fall table runner and add some votive candles to complete a warming effect.

2. White Pumpkin Wreaths

Stop by the store and pick up a pre-made grapevine or twig-style wreath, some florists picks, miniature white pumpkins and snag a few fresh fall leaves from outside of your house. Using the picks and a bit of wire, you can attach the leaves and pumpkins to the wreath and create an amazing wreath with an elegant twist.

3. Create a Gorgeous Natural Centerpiece

Start with an oval or round container with a bit of potting soil and then add a glorious mixture of succulents in the center. Then, nestle small pumpkins or gourds around the succulents. Finish off your centerpiece with fresh seasonal vegetables around the edges of the container such as radishes, eggplants, kale, and fresh herbs like rosemary and sage which can fill in any gaps. Your table centerpiece will look, smell and taste oh-so-good!

4. Pumpkin Votive Holders

Take a bunch of miniature pumpkins and use a small, sharp knife to carve a circle in the top of each one, making sure that your candles will securely fit inside the hole. Insert your tea lights and immediately have beautiful fall candle holders to spruce up your apartment for the fall season.

5. Create Floral Pieces in a Pinch

We know how fun carving pumpkins can be, but have you ever considered skipping the scary face and instead inserting some gorgeous fall flowers into them? Mums and other blooming plants can easily be placed into a carved pumpkin to complement your doorstep, entryways or create a magical centerpiece for your fall festivities.

Looking for Apartments in Orlando?

You simply will be hard-pressed to find a more warm and welcoming community than our apartments in Orlando. Contact us today to learn about our generous floor plans and stellar amenities.

Promenade Crossing Kitchen

How to Keep Your Stainless Steel Appliances Clean

Promenade Crossing KitchenDo you want to feel like you’re living in the lap of luxury? At our apartments in Orlando with high-quality amenities, you can. You’ll enjoy cooking, baking, and dining in our select floor plans with a stunning kitchen and stainless steel appliances.

Of course, even stainless steel needs to be cleaned from time to time. By following these handy cleaning and maintenance tips, your appliances will look sparkling clean like the first day you moved in.

The Ingredients

You don’t necessarily have to buy a steel cleaner. Instead, you can rely on items you likely already have in your pantry: olive oil and vinegar.

Cleaning Method

Begin by adding vinegar to a spray bottle. Apply vinegar over the entire appliance surface. Use a soft cloth to sop up the vinegar after a few moments.

Next, get a second soft cloth. Apply olive oil to this. Following the stainless-steel grain, clean thoroughly. Don’t be afraid to apply a bit of elbow grease at this stage.

With yet another clean cloth (or a clean corner of your first or second cloth), dab at the appliance. It’s important to keep some of the olive oil intact, but not enough that it’s blobbing on the surface.

Preventing Smudging

If fingerprints and smudges on your stainless steel appliances have got you down, you’ll be amazed at what a difference a bit of olive oil makes. By leaving the oil residue on the appliance, it’s more difficult for smudges and fingerprints to appear. For best results, repeat weekly.

Another great preventative method is to be careful about how you use your stainless steel appliances. If you have a steel refrigerator, then grip the handles, not the fridge itself, when in use. If it’s a stainless steel oven, again, rely on the handles. If you have a roommate, tell them to do the same. If someone does make a smudge, clean it up with a soft cloth immediately.

Do you want an apartment with stainless steel appliances? At Promenade Crossing, select floor plans get access to these appliances as well as granite-style countertops and chef caliber kitchens. Other amenities we offer are a solarium, vaulted ceilings, French doors, ceiling fans, private patio or balcony, a personal washer and dryer, walk-in closets, and garden-style bathtubs. To learn more, call our office today!

Ice Cream Cone

The Best Ice Cream Shops in Orlando

Ice Cream ConeWhen the Florida heat kicks up, it’s serious: you’ll want nothing more than to relax indoors or perhaps at the pool in your new Orlando apartment, but cooling off with some ice cream also isn’t a bad idea. Conveniently located near Fashion Square and Barry University, your new home is also near a variety of fantastic ice cream shops that are both chains and independently-owned. Here are some of our local favorites you won’t want to miss if you’re craving a cone or a shake.

The Soda Fountain

The Soda Fountain offers classic scoops, cones, sundaes, and shakes in addition to sorbet spritzers and old-fashioned egg creams. The eggnog flavored ice cream is a local favorite, but it’s the milkshakes and egg creams that keep the regulars coming back.

Twistee Treat

Set in a whimsical ice cream cone-shaped structure, Twistee Treat offers a colossal amount of flavors and mix-in choices in regular, premium, and light which has no fat or sugar. In addition to sundaes, slushies, and shakes, Twistee Treat also offers Nathan’s hot dogs.

Rainbow Sno-Cones

With a secret menu that only the locals know about, Rainbow offers a cross between the classic sno-cone and Asian-style shaved ice. In addition to classic flavors like strawberry and vanilla plus the ubiquitous rainbow color, there’s also bubblegum — but the most popular flavors are dark chocolate and coconut.

Kelly’s Homemade Ice Cream

Kelly’s serves up Florida classics like “Alligator Tracks” (orange with crunchy toppings, including dark chocolate) and unique flavors such as bright blue “Cookie Monster” ice cream. When you’re in the mood to sample a little bit of everything, try their ice cream flights, which consists of four mini waffle bowls filled with 4 flavors of your choice!

Schwab’s Pharmacy

Tucked within the Universal Studios resort, this old-fashioned drugstore is worth the trip. With actual 50’s-style milkshakes and sodas served up at the counter, Schwab’s of Orlando is a carbon copy of the Hollywood original where Lana Turner was discovered having lunch. Today, Universal Studios visitors come for the banana splits and shakes made with Ben and Jerry’s.

Just a hop and skip away from downtown Orlando, Promenade Crossing offers convenience and stellar amenities that will make you want to call it home right away. Contact us today to learn more about our apartment community!

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