by Madeline Pillow on December 18, 2014

 

…Especially when you give me crap like that

                            home improvement                                                                                               

 

Jeannine Miller, Moss Building & DesignBy – Jeannine Miller (jmiller@mossbuildinganddesign.com)

I know, I know, you’re thinking Man, this chick is a jerk!  While that may be true, I’m still going to put this out there. Think of it as my way of helping you not waste your money (You’re welcome).

The 5 things I don’t want for Christmas:

  1. Perfume.  Unless I tell you a specific scent I love, please do not buy me perfume.  I don’t care how popular Faith Hill, Brittany Spears, or Taylor Swift’s perfume is at Kohl’s, I will likely hate it.  Trying to pick the right perfume for another person is like trying to pick out their contact lenses — impossible.
  1. A gift card to a store where I don’t even shop.  Seriously, when was the last time you saw me in Forever 21?  Stick to Amazon and we’ll be fine.
  1. Used stuff.  I actually had a [former] relative give me a shirt that still had wrinkles from her wearing it the day before.  You know how I know she wore it the day before?  I WAS WITH HER.
  1. Clothes.  You will either buy the correct size and confirm that I look like a size I’m disgusted by OR you will buy a size too small and upset me because I can’t fit into it.  You can’t win.
  1. Tchotchkes.  There is a reason I don’t have knick-knacks all over my house:  I don’t like them.  If you buy them for me, it makes me feel bad when I put them directly into the donation pile.

Now that I’ve offended everyone who was considering giving me a gift this year, I’m off to buy the wrong presents for them…’Tis the Season!

 

And now a word from my sponsor:

For a gift sure to be appreciated, how about our Handyman For a Day deal?  Eight hours of handyman service for only $499!  Purchase via the Moss App or call us at 703-961-7707.

In addition to blogging about all things home and family-related, Jeannine Miller manages Moss Building & Design’s Community Relations Department, which includes the popular HandyMOM 101 and HandyGirl 101 workshop programs.

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HandyGirl101 NOVA

By Pam Kopiak (PKopiak@MossBuildingandDesign.com)

“No grave at Arlington National Cemetery can be purchased, each must be earned” -  Jack E. Lechner, Jr., Superintendent Arlington National Cemetery

Living in Arlington, VA and having a father buried there myself, I am all too familiar with Arlington National Cemetery.  It is usually a very somber spot with a relatively small number of people there (compared to the size of the place).  But on December 13, 2014, Arlington National Cemetery was transformed during the Wreaths Across America event.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of Arlington National Cemetery and to commemorate this, an organization called Wreaths Across America decided to provide fresh wreaths to every headstone in the entire cemetery.  That is over 230,000 freshly made wreaths.  Wreaths Across America had donated wreaths in the past but usually just for certain sections of the cemetery.  With so many wreaths to deliver, there was a call for massive amounts of volunteers.   And heed the call, we did.

Arlington cemetery

Moss Building & Design’s Community Relations Team, ever committed to being involved in our communities, set out with a purpose -  join the nearly 40,000 other volunteers at the cemetery to help lay wreaths throughout until every headstone was covered.  There were trials and tribulations getting there – train delays, boots that were creating blisters, stoppages to keep up the energy levels (Jenn’s son, Nate, came along and snacks were needed)- but we made it.  Boy, was it worth it.

The trains at Rosslyn were so crowded we ended up having to walk from the metro station to the cemetery.  The silver lining (not to be confused with the new Silver Line) was that  we got some exercise and were able to take in some sights on our way.

Arlington National CemeteryOnce we finally arrived, we noticed just how many people were there to donate their time as volunteers.  It was awe inspiring.  The place was overrun with people and with trucks filled with fresh wreaths – 69 trucks in all!

Arlington National Cemetery Arlington National Cemetery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And unlike prior visits to the cemetery, there was so much warmth.  It was a feeling I wish was there all year long.  But because it isn’t, I treasured the feeling and truly appreciated it while visiting that day.

Arlington National Cemetery

This was such a great event and I would recommend it to anyone in the future, even if it is just a section of the cemetery next time.  A good deed done while spending time with good friends – always a winning combination.  But I am warning Jenn now, this is how I am getting home next year (see photo below)!

Moss Building & Design

Pam Kopiak is part of Moss Building & Design’s Community Relations Department. If interested in planning an Arlington HandyMOM 101 or  HandyGirl 101 workshop programs contact her at PKopiak@MossBuildingandDesign.com. 

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Tips to Keep Your Home Safe and Secure in the Holiday Season      

December 17, 2014

Be Home-Safe While Traveling During the Holidays     By-Madeline Pillow (MPillow@MossBuildingandDesign.com)   It’s the most wonderful time of the year when you are taking time off from work to be with your family whether that means staying at home or traveling across the country. But no matter where you are headed for the holiday season, keep these tips below in mind to keep your home secure while you are away. Contact a neighbor, friend or family member. It never hurts to have someone know that you will be leaving for a trip. This way someone is unaware that your home will be empty or can keep an eye on your home. If someone can drop by your house they can also maintain tasks such as taking out the trash and picking up the mail which will save you from a big mess on your return. Secure doors and windows …   
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Build a Home Theater in Your Northern Virginia Finished Basement

December 15, 2014

  By – Madeline Pillow (MPillow@MossBuildingandDesign.com)  Remodeling Ideas for Your Basement At Moss, we have completed many basement home theaters for clients who wanted to have that perfect movie night experience in their home. It’s a great addition to have especially in a finished basement as the family gathering point. If you are considering a home theater in your basement, this blog will help you identify the steps you need to take. Basement Home Theater Renovation The first thing you need to decide is whether you want a home theater or a media room. The deciding factor between these two types of rooms is the amount of dedicated space you have. For example, if you have a fairly large room with no windows, then the choice favors towards a home theater. But if you have a space akin to a family room area then this space would be better suited as a media …   
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Meet Moss: Andrew Mallon

December 10, 2014

Meet Moss is our new series where we introduce an employee bi-weekly.  We’ll describe what they do here at Moss as well as some fun and interesting facts that you may have never guessed!  We’ll also share a photo so that you can put a face to the facts and get more familiar with our employees. Meet Moss Employee Andrew Mallon:   Andrew is part of a turn-key team working as a functional lead carpenter. He has been in the remodeling industry for about 14 years: starting the summer between his sophomore and junior year in high school. In his position, Andrew likes creating beautiful projects, the process of developing good solutions and ideas, and working with good people. His favorite hobby is chainsaw carving. As he says, “It is fast and fun and keeps the creative juices flowing.” You can view one of his creations in his Meet Moss photo. …   
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Meet Moss: Frank Stone

December 10, 2014

Meet Moss is our new series where we introduce an employee bi-weekly.  We’ll describe what they do here at Moss as well as some fun and interesting facts that you may have never guessed!  We’ll also share a photo so that you can put a face to the facts and get more familiar with our employees. Meet Moss Employee Frank Stone: Frank works as a plumber as part of a turn-key team at Moss and has 23 years of experience in the remodeling industry. What he enjoys about his job is meeting new customers and talking with them about their projects. His hobbies in his spare time have been taken over by his kids’ activities as he coaches various teams from baseball to softball and attends his kids’ sports games from basketball to volleyball. And even though this cuts into some serious fishing time, Frank likes sharing in his kids’ activities …   
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Kitchen Remodelers in Herndon, VA

December 3, 2014

  Kitchen Remodeling in Northern VA The kitchen is one of the more popular rooms that homeowners choose to remodel first. One reason is because of its role as a social hub. It’s the room for late-night snacks and quick goodbyes as kids and spouses run off to school and work in the morning. But with the kitchen remodel comes a number of selection choices which owners may or may not have in mind when starting the remodeling process. To get a better look of the design collaboration at Moss, let’s take a look at this recent kitchen remodel in Herndon, VA (seen above and below). Kitchen Remodeling in Herndon, VA Prior to the remodel, these homeowners knew they wanted to improve aspects of their kitchen such as lack of seating and functionality. Selections weren’t initially as important to the homeowners as these major ideas. Layout: In order to change …   
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Basement Remodeling Questions Answered by Northern Virginia’s Top Contractor Part 2

November 25, 2014

 By – Jenn Zschunke (jzschunke@mossbuildinganddesign.com) Did you know that there are over 600,000 contractors in the US? That is an astoundingly high number – and makes the idea of possibly starting a basement remodel, a bit overwhelming. Where to start? How to choose a contractor? Fortunately, Moss has been consistently rated in the top 100 contractors in the entire country; guaranteeing that our clients receive top notch service and quality remodeling. What sets us apart, besides our commitment to quality, are our unique remodeling processes. For those just considering a remodel, our experts provide more detail: What is the process when we start with Moss ? From start to finish, how much time does it take to remodel a basement? Will there be someone to help us make selections? Moss offers a free estimate and design.  When you call Moss, our Customer Care Managers will schedule an appointment for you with a …   
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Going Public

November 24, 2014

(But not in a Kardashian way) By – Jeannine Miller (jmiller@mossbuildinganddesign.com) You know that awesome feeling when your idea actually pans out like you had hoped? Yeah, I got that. We hosted our first ‘public’ HandyMOM 101 workshop and it was fantastic! Typically, our workshops are presented to women’s groups who are looking for a monthly speaker or activity. However, we often hear from individuals who don’t belong to a formal group but  would love to learn some new DIY skills. To that end, we decided to hold a workshop and invite people we have met over the years who may or may not have had the chance to be part of a group workshop. We weren’t sure what the response would be, so I was thrilled to have over 100 women interested in coming. Our guests braved a cold and rainy night to spend the evening with us and we’re …   
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What’s In It For The Girls?

November 24, 2014

by Pam Kopiak (PKopiak@mossbuildinganddesign.com) The HandyGirls that is.  Why should they join us for one of our HandyGirl 101 workshops?  There are plenty of reasons with the most important one being – they always have a lot of fun! This past Monday, Moss Building & Design traveled to Arlington, VA to meet with Glebe Elementary School’s 5th grade Girl Scout Troop #5200.  It was a BIG troop with a lot of energy!  We were prepared to help get some of the energy used up in a fun, yet productive, way. The girls learned new skills  – how to spread Speed-Set with a trowel, how to cut tile with a tile cutter,and how to spread grout with a floater.  And also very importantly – how to clean up their work with a sponge!  I tell you, I think sponges are underrated.  In this workshop, the sponge might just be the star of …   
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