Susan Stivaletta - RE/MAX Executive Realty, Franklin, MA Real Estate, Norfolk, MA Real Estate


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.

Chandlery

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.


All winter we look forward to summer time... the warm weather, the sun, the outdoor activities. However, when the sun starts to dip down on the first warm night we get a reminder of the price we pay for all of those outdoor luxuries: bugs. First come the May flies, then the June bugs, and all throughout the summer we have bees and mosquitos keeping us company at every cookout, campfire, and football game we go to. Aside from being a nuisance, mosquitos can also carry dangerous and sometimes deadly diseases like West Nile virus and yellow fever. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, mosquito-born illnesses kill over a million people each year. In spite of their danger, our entire livelihood depends on insects like bees and mosquitos. Biologist Jonas Salk is reported to have said, "If all insects on Earth disappeared, within 50 years all life on Earth would end. If all human beings disappeared from the Earth, within 50 years all forms of life would flourish." What Salk meant is that insects are the bottom of the food chain on which we and other animals depend. Flies, mosquitos, bees, and other insects serve as food for other animals and as pollinators for plants. To us, they may seem like pests, but our lives actually depend on them. So, how do we protect ourselves while also protecting the species of insects we want to avoid? Read on to find out.

Responsible Insect Control

Fortunately, there are ways for us to stay safe while also looking out for insect populations. Let's go down the list, bug-by-bug, and talk about some of those methods.
  • Mosquitos  Mosquitos repellant is one option. However, as you may have heard, one of the strongest repellants, DEET, has been shown to cause health problems when used often and in large amounts. We also know that many gimmicky mosquito repellants don't work at all. Among these are "ultrasonic" repellants which claim to use sound waves to repel the bugs, and mosquito repellant wristbands. They might protect your wrist, but probably aren't strong enough to keep mosquitos away from the rest of you. There are mosquito repellants that do work and haven't been shown to have adverse effects on your health. Lemon eucalyptus is a natural mosquito repellant that is often found in bug sprays. Picaridin is a new chemical alternative to DEET that doesn't come with the health risks. And, finally, you should always wear layers and thick clothing when outdoors in mosquito territory.
  • Bees and wasps  No one wants to have a bees' nest where they walk every day. However, you might be surprised to find that those bees are keeping your flower beds blooming each year.  To protect the bees in your yard, avoid using herbicides and pesticides in your lawn and garden. In terms of bee hives, we recommend that you only move the nest if it is in a particularly inconvenient location like around your door. Otherwise, leave it be. Do some research on the type of bee or wasp you're dealing with and decide if you're really in any danger before deciding to remove the nest.
  • Other insects  Just like bees and mosquitos, when you're dealing with other insect issues, be it in your lawn or garden, it's best to avoid chemical insecticides when possible. Not only are they bad for your lawn and for the insect population, but they can also enter groundwater and become harmful to humans as well.

 When it comes to the marketability of your house, appearances are everything! If your house is up for sale or you have plans to put it on the market soon, there are a lot of details you need to attend to before prospects stop by.

Although it's difficult to make a lived-in house look immaculate all the time, the closer you can come to that high standard, the better! Whether they're actively looking for signs of cleanliness or just noticing it subconsciously, the overall condition of your home can and does make an indelible impression on prospective buyers.

The reason "curb appeal" is emphasized so strongly by real estate agents is that the initial impression you make on house hunters can impact the amount of time your property stays on the market. That's especially true in "drive by" situations in which prospects quickly check out your house from the street and make a snap judgement about whether or not they like what they see. If your house and yard look appealing to them, then they may follow up with either the listing agent or their buyers' agent. On the other hand, if there's peeling paint visible, an aging roof, or weeds growing out of cracks in the driveway, they'll probably drive on and continue their search elsewhere. As you can imagine, there's a lot riding on curb appeal, so it pays to keep your lawn looking manicured and other landscaping features well maintained.

Once prospects are inside your home, they're going to notice everything from scuffed walls and cluttered furniture to the smell of toast you burned that morning or greasy cooking odors. Pet odors can also be a major turnoff for many prospective buyers, especially if they're not dog or cat fans to begin with! A worst-case-scenario, of course, is to have a last-minute pet accident happen on the floor when prospects are touring the house. That's not just a hypothetical situation; it occurs more often than you might think. To prevent that potential "disaster," some home sellers make arrangements with friends, relatives, or pet daycare services to have their dogs or cats taken care of outside of the house when tours are scheduled. While that's not always practical or even possible, it can make a big difference in the impression your home makes on potential buyers.

The bottom line when it comes to effective home staging is that people are going to notice "the good, the bad, and the ugly." Your objective, of course, is to do everything possible to diminish the negatives and accentuate the positives. Your real estate agent can be an indispensable resource for providing you with the unvarnished truth about what needs to be repaired or cosmetically improved to present the best possible image of your home to the public.



59 Daniels St, Franklin, MA 02038

Single-Family

$569,900
Price

10
Rooms
4
Beds
2/1
Full/Half Baths
Unique well cared for sun drenched 2900 sq ft Colonial on scenic Daniels Street with a phethora of updates by current owners. Gorgeous new cabinet packed kitchen, back splash, granite counters, tile flooring & stainless appliances. Kitchen opens to dining room w/gleaming wide plank wood floors & flooring follows through to living room w/ pellet/wood stove. Large family room w/recessed lighting wall to wall and slider with mahogany steps that lead to large flat private, professionally landscaped lot. First level also has separate office & sun room. Second level has master and two other bedrooms with wide plank wood flooring lots of closet space. 4th bedroom has wall to wall. Harvey windows, new siding, interior painted, paved walkway w/granite steps, portico, new electrical and lighting 2012. Roof on house 2006, roof addition/office 2010.Back part of house/4th bedroom built 2009/2010. Large Barn with so much potential, patio area, two driveways. 5K credit at closing towards central air.
Open House
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546 Dedham St, Wrentham, MA 02093

Single-Family

$499,000
Price

8
Rooms
3
Beds
2/1
Full/Half Baths
Welcome home to this 2 year young three bedroom 2.5 bath ranch on over an acre of land. Fabulous open floor plan, cabinet packed kitchen with granite counter, stainless appliances and island. Great room with gas fireplace, first floor laundry, hardwood floors throughout main level. Master bedroom has large walking closet with closet organizers, private bath with jetted tub and tiled shower. Newly finished walk out lower level with great room and another separate room currently used as bedroom (up to you so many options). Harvey windows and hybrid water heater heat pump and water softener. Two car garage, storage shed, the list goes on...move right in pottery barn perfect property!! Showings begin immediately.
Open House
Sunday
June 11 at 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Cannot make the Open Houses?
Location: 546 Dedham St, Wrentham, MA 02093    Get Directions

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