Create Halloween magic on a shoestring budget

(ARA) – Ghoulish ghosts. Wicked witches. Things that go bump in the night. What better way to have a little Halloween fun than to decorate your home for that spooky night? Halloween decorations can be expensive if you buy them in a store, but don’t let that stop you from capturing the spirit. It’s easy

Making your first home purchase dream a reality

(ARA) – Buying a home is more than numbers, dollars and cents. The pride of owning your own home is an incredible feeling, providing a place for you and your family to come together and build memories. For many, getting through the process of buying a home can be daunting, if not downright frightening. Talk

Reclaim your garage in a weekend

(ARA) – Is your garage dingy, cluttered and in need of a facelift? Transforming it into a “showroom” for your car, reclaiming it for a workshop, playroom or man cave isn’t difficult. All it takes is a weekend and a little elbow grease. “Many homeowners view the garage as an extension of the home –

A paper check is no match for a storm

(ARA) – The United States is the most severe-weather prone country on Earth according to the National Weather Service. Hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding and other natural disasters can strike without warning and force you to evacuate your home or cause disruptions in mail service. Ensuring greater reliability of federal benefit payments during unforeseen events is one

How to protect your family from financial setbacks

(ARA) – We all know what it means to save for a rainy day. But when it comes to sudden financial storms, few of us are really prepared. Unexpected loss of income can dampen even the best financial plan, as many have learned the hard way during the recent economic downturn. That’s why having adequate

Creating a tear-free goodbye at the start of school

(ARA) -The start of school can be an anxious time for both parents and children. Whether starting in the fall or transitioning to a new school mid-year, many parents face first-day jitters from the anticipation, excitement and anxiety about what to expect, especially if they have preschoolers who are starting school for the first time.

Top things to consider for great landscaping results

(ARA) – What project can instantly update your home’s appeal and make it the shining star on the block? Landscaping can add value and curb appeal. Good landscaping doesn’t have to be time consuming or expensive. With the right plan and some creativity, you can easily be the envy of all your neighbors. Lawn: Should

Easy ways to incorporate timeless style into your home

(ARA) – Think traditional styling is only for opulent mansions and stuffy country clubs? Well, think again. Traditional design is not only extremely accessible to incorporate into any home, but according to research by the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), it’s the most popular, too. Learn how to take back traditional and customize your

How to save with college costs on the rise

(ARA) – With the cost of food, fashion and simply living steeply on the rise in the U.S., it is no surprise that college tuition costs are also greatly increasing from year to year. According to the College Board, tuition for the 2010-2011 school year increased on average by 4.5 percent at private colleges, and

How to host a girls' night in 'pairing party'

(ARA) – You can always find a good reason to organize a girls’ night in with your best friends. But why not spice up the theme of the gathering this time and host a “pairing party” featuring everyone’s favorite ingredient: dark chocolate? Pairing parties are great social events designed around the education and sampling of