Monthly Archives: May 2016

6 Fun Ideas for Your Memorial Day Staycation

Portrait of young man frying sausages and talking to his son at Memorial Day barbecueThe phrase Memorial Day usually brings images of long weekend vacations and fun; if your plans are a little closer to home, a stay at home vacation—a Memorial Day staycation—take these fun ideas to heart for an enjoyable weekend that kicks your summer off on the right foot.

Home Projects

picture of kitchen remodelWe know that some people would rather swim in rotting cheese than tackle a home project over Memorial Day.  For others it’s an opportunity to improve their home—and have the time to finish it.  We’ve given you a list of home projects to choose from, anything from installing a backsplash to putting in a DIY floor.  Get started with planning your home project now to ensure the best results (and to get lots of advice from the experts).


It’s never too early to invite all your friends and family to a bonfire.  Even if Memorial Day weekend is a cool one, a bonfire warms everyone up and gives you a fun night of hanging out and enjoying the outdoors after being stuck inside all winter.

Barbecue/Grill Out & Yard Games

summer home project front stairs with tilePull out the yard games!  If you want to spruce up your patio, choose a porcelain tile to give it a face lift and get it ready for a Memorial Day grill out.  To prepare your deck for all the traffic, pressure wash the boards to get all the winter grime off.  Then get out the bocce ball, corn hole, yard dice, and any other yard games that’ll make your Memorial Day grill out an event to remember.

Day Trip

Even if you can’t get away, find an amusement park, water park, museum, or park for a day trip.  If you want to keep your day trip cost low, pack a picnic basket and head to the park for a day of fun.  Look online for Memorial Day weekends to museums or other attractions for a bargain getaway.

Take a hike

If the weather is nice, head to a state or county park with scenic views and great hiking trails.  Make sure to bring sunscreen (you could burn easily after being inside all winter) and a good pair of walking shoes.  If you are worried about distance, map out the trails online to ensure that you don’t end up on a long trail and you don’t get lost.

Go shopping

Head out on the town to dress up your wardrobe and your home.  Stop in at your favorite stores without having to worry about heading back to work on Monday.

4 Steps for Choosing the Right Blinds & Curtains for Your Home

living room with blindsWith the days getting longer, spring is an ideal time to research the right blinds and curtains for your home.  Whether you need new blinds and curtains for blocking the light so you can sleep or watch TV, are looking for the energy efficiency of a good blind, or want to dress up your home before the fun of summer, choosing the right blinds and curtains for your home is an easy, multi-step process.

Know what you need the blinds and curtains for.

Do you need window treatments that darken the room?  Do you need blinds and curtains that can dress up a room? Will you need to see out the window often?  The first step in choosing the right blinds and curtains for your home is determining the function. If you need a dark room for sleeping, consider a blackout curtain. Need curtains or blinds that give you privacy? Order blinds that come up from the bottom of the window, allowing for light and privacy. Need a window covering for a window that you use often? Look for sheer curtains that won’t block the view.

Know your options.

man cave blindsThere are a lot of blinds and curtains on the market, so don’t be afraid to consult the experts for assistance.  To list every option, you would need a novel but here are some common kind of curtains and blinds:

Sheers.  Sheers are very light curtains that allow a large amount of light in.  Sheers are perfect for windows that need to be dressed up or that you look out often.

Blackout.  Blackout curtains are perfect for bedrooms, family rooms, man caves, and media rooms.  Made with an inner liner, blackout curtains block the light out from the room—ideal for third shifters, sleepers who don’t like the light, or family members who want to watch TV without the glare.

Drapes.  Drapes are typically floor-to-ceiling and are designed for privacy and high impact.

Insulated/fabric blinds.  These blinds are high function window treatments, giving you an extra level of privacy.  Some insulated or fabric blinds can even add energy efficiency to your home.


To determine the ideal length, use function and the aesthetic impact you want to determine the length and width of your new blinds or curtains (or both).  If you are concerned about the accuracy of your measurements, hire the professionals for advice, measurements, and installation.

If you want to make a ceiling seem taller, choose floor length window treatments that block out the light and mount the curtains above the windows. For a room that needs privacy and light, choose a blind that comes up from the bottom of the window.  If you have a window that has a table or counter under it, choose blinds or shades that darken the room when needed. For a kid’s room, choose shades and darkening curtains to make sure the sun doesn’t interrupt nap or bed time. In general, when choosing curtain height that you want to just cover the window, purchase a curtain slightly longer than the window.

Look at the whole room.

To determine whether to purchase neutral or patterned window treatments, look around the room. If the furniture items, flooring and rugs are neutral, you can purchase a bold window treatment with a pattern. However, if your room is filled with bold patterns and colors, blend the curtains into the walls to make the rest of the room pop.  Don’t be afraid to consult a designer to assist with your curtain or blind (or both) choice; a designer can help you choose a window treatment that looks great and is made from the right material that fits with your lifestyle—all the essential elements of the right curtains and blinds.

6 ‘Get Wet’ Floors that Can Take the Puddles

bathroom with tile floor that can handle waterKitchens, bathrooms, basements, mud rooms, and laundry rooms all have one key commonality: water.  From an occasional water spill to the moisture that seeps through your basement slab to a once-in-a-lifetime flooding, these spaces need flooring that can take all the humidity, puddles, and moisture that comes with a wet area.  Not all flooring is created equal in this area, however, so take special care when choosing the right floor for your ‘get wet’ rooms.

For kitchens, bathrooms, basements & laundry rooms:

Luxury Vinyl

Water, high traffic, pets, soda…this floor can take whatever life in your wet areas throws at it.  In addition to being incredibly durable, modern luxury vinyl is available in a tile or wood look, can be installed with or without grout, and can be a do-it-your-self project (depending on the product).


tile flooring in laundry that tolerates water spillsThere are so many reasons to consider tile for your wet areas: porcelain tile is water, odor and mildew resistant.  There are a ton of tile patterns and colors.  Tile can be installed as a do-it-yourself project, and can be extremely affordable.  If you’re worried about the cold feel of tile under your feet, tile can be installed over radiant floor heating.  It’s also easy-to-clean, making it perfect for any kitchen, bathroom, basement, laundry room, or mud room.

Sheet Vinyl

Sheet vinyl is just what the title says: vinyl flooring that comes, and is installed, by the sheet.  Vinyl sheet flooring is durable, can handle just about any amount of water, and comes in many different colors and choices.

For basements only:

carpet in basement that can handle basement moistureThese floors are suggested for basements that only deal with the moisture that seeps through the walls and floor—not basements that are prone to flooding.

Engineered hardwood

If you want wood floors in your basement, consider engineered hardwood.  While still a real wood floor, engineered hardwood floors are not as prone to problems with temperature changes and moisture because engineered hardwood is constructed of many layers.


Carpet is a popular choice for basements, and it’s easy to see why: it’s so soft and warmer under your feet than wood or tile (unless you have radiant floor heating).  Carpet comes in a huge selection of colors, styles, and materials, so it’s hard to find a carpet that doesn’t look great.

Carpet tiles

Carpet tiles are perfect for rec rooms and play rooms. Because you don’t install carpet tiles with a pad, they are not as soft as traditional carpet but are really easy to clean up. If a carpet square gets dirty, just pop it up, and replace it with another carpet tile.  If you want a fun décor, look for carpet tiles in a bright pattern to add interest to your area.

To check out your options for flooring that can handle water, stop in at any Y’s Way to view your ‘get wet’ floor options so you don’t have to panic every time you see a puddle. If you are installing radiant floor heating under your flooring, mention it to your salesperson when shopping.  Our flooring experts can show you your options so you can make the best choice for your wet areas.