Oklahoma City Relishes in $8 Million Budget Surplus, Plans Road Enhancements

Oklahoma City Relishes in $8 Million Budget Surplus, Plans Road Enhancements

Every city and state needs tax revenue to improve the community. Taxes are used by local government to address various projects such as beautification, health, education, safety, and public utilities. If there are enough taxes to support additional programs, the city or state can then begin to advance in terms of business, tourism, and education.

Oklahoma City will soon be enjoying the benefits of more of those types of projects because it currently has a large budget surplus of $8 million. City council is actively planning how to use it for additional important programs within the city.  According to the city council, each member will submit their own project proposals for the budget. One million dollars will be allocated to each city council member to determine where it should be used.

City council members will be using the allocated budget to build more roads or enhance existing roads within the city.  There are existing roads in the city that need to be repaved in order to maintain better traffic flow and safety among vehicles. There are also council members who have expressed their desire to put money toward other plans apart from road enhancements, including the construction of bus stop covers and the building of a quiet zone in the downtown area.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate

Citizens Caring for Children Receives Grants to Help Foster Kids

Citizens Caring for Children Receives Grants to Help Foster Kids

Every day, there are children who become orphans or are abandoned by their families. These children are then placed into foster care, which supplies them with their basic needs of food, shelter, clothing, and education. The foster care system is designed to continually support these children and see to it that they have a good future ahead of them, despite their unfortunate situations.

Citizens Caring for Children (CCC) is a non-profit organization that aims to provide children in foster care with the basic things they need, such as clothing, bags, school supplies, and shoes. The organization offers several programs and services, including their Resource Center, Joy 4 Kids, Back-to-School, and Mentoring to help kids prepare for their future.

To further support the advocacy of providing attention and care to foster kids, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation has granted a $15,000 support fund to CCC, which will be used to fund their Resource Center.  Children and young adults in foster care can come to the Resource Center four times each year to receive two new outfits, toiletry items, two books, socks, underwear, and a pair of shoes.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate

Tips on Choosing the Right Curtains for your Home

Tips on Choosing the Right Curtains for your Home

Choosing the right curtains can give new life to the overall appearance of each room inside your home. Using them comes with plenty of advantages – they can help provide great deal of privacy, they block light from entering when you’re sleeping, and they can even make your room look more spacious.

Finding the right curtains, however, takes some vision and imagination.  So, here are a few things you should take into consideration:

1.       Color. The color of your curtains should match the color of your wall. This doesn’t mean they need to be the exact same color, but they do need to complement the existing paint. The same is true for matching the rest of your decor and flooring. Gentle shades, such as creams and pale pastel colors, are always a good choice, but if you have a plain room where you would like to add some visual interest, then bold colored or patterned curtains are probably the best option.

2.       Thickness. If you want your room to look lighter and well ventilated without opening the curtains every day, then opt to go for sheer curtains.  If you’re looking for something that will allow you to sleep well without being disturbed by the sunlight, then you should opt for heavier curtains that will block the sunlight from entering your room.

3.       Design and Pattern.  There are many curtains with attractive designs and patterns, a lot of plain-colored curtains, and curtains with heavy and complicated prints. If you have a small to medium-sized room, it is best to go for curtains with simpler designs and minimal prints. Larger prints have the tendency to make a room look smaller.

4.       Size. Measure the size of your window, so you will have an idea of which sized curtains will fit most perfectly. Decide on how high above the window you would like your curtains to begin, most designers hang curtains about six inches above the window frame to give a sense of height to the room.

New curtains are a great option for freshening up your rooms and completely changing the look of your interior without spending too much money on redecorating.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate

Laundry Tips for the Working Mom

Laundry Tips for the Working Mom

Doing the laundry can be a time-consuming task. You need to gather all the dirty clothes, load them into the washing machine, the dry them, fold them, and then distribute them throughout the house.  It can be a particularly challenging task for working moms because, once they come home, they only have a few hours remaining in the day, and it can be difficult to squeeze in the entire process.

Fortunately, there are ways you can manage doing your laundry in an efficient way.  Here are a few tips:

  • Schedule your laundry. Each week, allocate a time when you can do the laundry for a few hours without compromising your work schedule. For instance, make Saturday a laundry day. This way, you can have a more relaxed chunk of time to do the laundry, and the kids can help.
  • Invest in reliable machines. Even if you do have a good plan for how to do the laundry, if your machine is unreliable, it can still take an even longer time. There are machines these days that have energy-saving features and bigger load capacities.
  • Have your family members help out. But, do not make it appear as an obligation, which will only turn them off. Instead, make it fun by creating a game during laundry, so everyone is enjoying what they do.
  • Separate your laundry from the start. Do not make it hard for yourself to organize things once you are ready to do the laundry. Sort all your clothes and separate the whites from the colored ones ahead of time, so you can easy pick up a stack and go.
  • Fold your clothes immediately. This will help avoid wrinkles and reduce your ironing time. You can fold your clothes while multi-task, such as when you’re watching TV or helping your kids do their homework.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate

Meetings to Focus on Tulsa-Oklahoma City Rail Line

The state Transportation Department has scheduled meetings for Tuesday in Tulsa, Wednesday in Stroud and Thursday in Oklahoma City to launch a series of public meetings with Oklahoma transportation officials to consider passenger rail service between Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

The first meeting is held at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at Tulsa Community College.

The state Transportation Department and the Federal Railroad Administration are evaluating how passenger rail service could improve transportation between the two cities. A corridor study will evaluate service options, costs and environmental impacts.

A meeting Wednesday will be in Stroud at Stroud High School. A Thursday meeting in Oklahoma City will be at Metrotech, Springlake Campus. Those meetings also start at 5:30 p.m.

Each meeting is scheduled to last two hours.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate

Keeping Your Kitchen Clean and Safe at All Times

Keeping Your Kitchen Clean and Safe at All Times

The kitchen is the busiest room inside a house.  It’s where we prepare all of our meals, where kids tend to hang out after school, where families gather for quality time, and where guests always seem to collect during entertaining.

With all of these busy activities inside the kitchen, it is truly a challenge to keep the room clean and tidy at all times.  Not doing so creates an unsafe, dirty, and unorganized kitchen that can lead to bacteria build up.  It can also develop an unpleasant smell and appearance, which then makes it very uninviting.

Here are a few tricks for how you can maintain cleanliness in your kitchen at all times:

  • Practice the rule of “clean as you go.”  After using your kitchen tools, clean them and put them back in their proper places. Do not let them pile up in the sink or on the counter, as it can quickly turn into a mess. If you practice this rule, you will be happy to see how you can maintain a clean kitchen without taking much time.
  • Designate stations in your kitchen. Keep one side of the counter for chopping food items and the other side as an eating area. Always put dirty dishes on one side of the sink, so they don’t overrun the entire kitchen.  If you designate specific places for certain things, it is easier to clean up because everything has a place.
  • Find the right time to clean. There is always some point in the day when you can allocate a few minutes to clean the kitchen. If you have 15-30 minutes to spare, use it to clean everything, so the dirtiness doesn’t drag out.
  • Clean your counters. Yes the kitchen serves many purposes, but your countertop is not a display shelf. Keep kitchen utensils in their proper places, as well as small appliances.  Clear your counter as much as possible because it will significantly affect the impression of a clean kitchen.
  • Don’t pile everything in the kitchen. We love to multi-task in the kitchen, like helping the kids do their homework while we cook. While this can enhance family bonding, it is important to set limitations in the room. Do not let everything pile into the kitchen as though it were a permanent storage place.  Once homework is done, put books and papers away.  Hang coats and bags where they belong, not left slung over chairs.
  • Clean spills immediately.  Small spills can make a big impact, especially if they leave a mark when they dry. If you spill anything, clean it up right then.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate Agent

Street Newspaper Offered in Oklahoma City to Help the Homeless

Street Newspaper Offered in Oklahoma City to Help the Homeless

Low income individuals, including the homeless, oftentimes belong to the lower levels of  society. This means that opportunities are limited for them and they are not able to speak out easily.  But, that doesn’t mean they have nothing to say.  In fact, these people have a lot to say, especially with regards to society and how it affects them.

In order to help the homeless and low-income individuals, the Homeless Alliance and students from Vanderbilt University and the University of Oklahoma have launched a newspaper for and by these people. The newspaper is written and sold by the homeless or low-income individuals, and trough this program, they are given employment and the chance to vocalize their ideas and be heard.

Newspapers of this nature are commonly known as street papers, and there are about 43 street papers throughout the country.  The Curbside Chronicle is the first one in Oklahoma and is being published and distributed bi-monthly.

Cindy Daniel
Oklahoma City Real Estate Agent