Marion Cheney's Blog
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Making your own candles is a fulfilling endeavor to take. You’ll learn about the art of candle-making, get the chance to make something for your home yourself, and reap the rewards once you get to burn it and diffuse whatever (if any) fragrances you choose to use.
Many people are surprised to learn that it isn’t all that hard to make a candle. However, to make one that will burn well and smell nice can be tricky.
In this article, we’re going to walk you through how to make your own candle for your home.
In the times when households weren’t yet powered by electricity, candle-making or “chandlery” wasn’t just a fun skill to have--it was downright useful.
Since the earliest times in recorded history humans have been making candles. First from tallow, or beef fat, and then of beeswax and other animal-produced substances.
Today, however, the most common candle wax base is paraffin, due to it being the cheapest base. As a petroleum byproduct, many people are concerned with potential health risks of paraffin and have elected to use alternatives. The two most common are beeswax and soybean oil.
The wax base you choose is up to you, but you’ll likely find that soy is a good middle ground between quality and price.
Gather your supplies
Once you’ve decided on a wax, you’ll need to think about a few other ingredients--namely your wick, container, and any oils you’d like to add for fragrance. You’ll also need a way to melt the wax, such as a double boiler.
When it comes to wicks, it’s easiest to buy them pre-assembled. However, you can buy a roll of braided rope and tabs to make and cut them yourself. When cutting your wick, leave an inch or two extra so that you can cut the wick to the proper size later on.
In terms of a container you have several options, some of which might be laying around in your house at this very moment. You could reuse an old candle container, use mason jars or coffee cups, and most other heat- and flame-resistant containers. If you plan on making several, buying a pack of candle tins of mason jars online is an economical way to go.
Finally, you’ll need to choose some fragrances if you want your candle to smell like anything. There are hundreds of essential oils to choose from. However, they don’t all go nicely together. It’s best to do a bit of research and find out which oils make good pairs. Some examples: Cedarwood and bergamot, lavender and rosemary, orange and lemongrass.
Making your candle
Put water in the bottom of your double boiler and add roughly ½ lb wax to the top pan. Heat slowly until the wax melts, stirring and chopping up the larger chunks throughout the process.
Once the wax is melted, take your wick and dip the tab into the wax, then carefully press the tab into the bottom of your container. Use a pen or other tool to do this to avoid burning yourself on the wax.
Next, add your essential oils to the double boiler. A pound of wax typically requires only an ounce of oil. Then, stir it for a minute or so to distribute the oil throughout the wax.
Then, pour the wax into your container with one hand. With your other hand, keep the wick held in the center of the container.
Finally, you’ll need to keep the wick in the center of the candle until the wax dries. You can do this by tying or taping the wick to a pen or pencil and resting the pencil on top of the container so that the wick stays in the center.
If you are thinking of buying a home in the near future, there’s one three-digit number that could be oh so important to you. That number is your credit score. Read on to find out how a credit score can affect you and the steps you can take to be sure that your credit is in good standing when you head to apply for a mortgage.
What Is A Credit Score?
Your credit score is checked by lenders of all kinds. Every time you apply for a loan or a credit card, there’s a good chance that your credit score is being pulled to see if you qualify for the loan. Your credit score is calculated based on the information on your credit report. This information includes:
Length of credit history
New credit accounts opened
The areas with the most impact on your score is your payment history and your debt-to-credit ratio. This means that on-time payments are super important. You also don’t want to get anywhere close to maxing out your credit cards or loan amounts to keep your score up.
What’s A Good Score?
If you’re aiming for the perfect credit score, it’s 850. Most consumers won’t reach that state of perfection. That’s, OK because you don’t have to be perfect to buy a house. If your score is 740 and above, know that you’re in great shape to get a mortgage. Even if your score is below 740 but around 700 or above, you’ll be able to get a good interest rate on your mortgage. Most lenders typically look for a score of 620 and above. Keep in mind that the higher your credit score the better your interest rate will be.
What If You Lack Credit History?
Most people should get a credit card around age 20 in order to begin building credit. You can still qualify for a mortgage without a credit history, but it will be considerably harder. Lenders may look at things like your rent payments or car payments. Lenders want to know that you’re a responsible person to lend to.
What If Your Score Needs Help?
It doesn’t mean you’re a hopeless case if you lack good credit. Everything from errors on your credit report to missed payments can be fixed. The most important thing that you can do if you’re buying a home in the near future is to be mindful of your credit. Keep an eye on your credit report and continue to make timely payments. With a bit of focus, you’ll be well on your way to securing a mortgage for the home of your dreams.
- Install smoke detectors in strategic locations, and test the batteries several times a year (if not monthly). Your kitchen and bedroom areas are among the key spots in which smoke detectors need to be placed.
- Carbon monoxide detectors are also a vital part of any home safety plan.
- A working fire extinguisher should be available in the kitchen, as well as any other room in your home where a potential fire hazard exists. It's also a good idea to take a couple minutes to read the instructions and give members of the family a crash course on correct fire extinguisher operation.
- Reduce the chance of chimney fires by having your fireplace and chimney professionally cleaned every couple of years. The frequency depends on several factors, including how often you use your fireplace and what type of wood you burn.
- Miscellaneous home safety reminders: Other aspects of your plan may include burglar proofing your home, identifying and correcting potential electrical hazards, and reducing risks related to tripping, falling, and slipping.
Buying a condo requires hard work and patience, particularly for property buyers who are searching for a condo that they can enjoy for years to come. Thus, there are many questions that condo buyers need to ask before they purchase a property, including:
1. What Does the Condo Include?
Although a condo will feature home essentials like bedrooms and bathrooms, there are other factors that condo buyers need to consider as well.
For example, does a condo offer reserved parking? If not, where will you park your car day after day? And if you invite guests to visit, where can they park their vehicles? These are just some of the questions you'll want to consider about a condo before you submit an offer. Ultimately, you'll want to ensure that you are comfortable with everything that a condo has to offer. And if a condo fails to meet your expectations, keep in mind that other properties may be available that satisfy your needs.
2. How Much Are the Homeowners Association (HOA) Fees?
Condo owners usually are responsible for their monthly mortgage costs, along with HOA fees.
HOA fees are used to cover property maintenance costs throughout a condo community. The costs ensure that your neighborhood will feature fresh-cut lawns, clear walkways and other great features that help it stand out from other neighborhoods. At the same time, HOA fees must be considered before you purchase a condo, as these costs can add up quickly.
In many instances, HOA fees may add several hundred dollars to your monthly expenses. As such, you should find out exactly how much your HOA fees will be prior to buying a condo.
Consult with your real estate agent to learn more about a condo community's HOA fees. By doing so, you can budget accordingly.
3. What Are the HOA Rules?
HOA rules may vary from community to community, and you should get a copy of these rules to determine whether they correspond to your lifestyle.
For example, some condo communities feature quiet hours. On the other hand, various condo communities may have rules in place to prevent condo owners from renting out their properties.
Your real estate agent should have no trouble providing you with a copy of the HOA rules for a particular condo community. Examine these requirements closely before you make your purchase decision, and you can understand how the HOA rules will impact your day-to-day life in a condo community.
No one should be forced to settle for an inferior condo. Fortunately, employing a real estate agent with condo experience can help you speed up the process of finding a terrific condo.
With support from an experienced real estate agent, you can browse a broad array of condos in any city or town. Plus, your real estate agent can offer details about HOA fees and rules, along with provide expert tips to help you secure the perfect condo at a great price.
Collaborate with a real estate agent, and you can improve your chances of discovering your ideal condo.