This Labor Day Weekend, treat yourself and your guests to these labor-less meals. All of these meals can be prepared within 10 minutes, serve 4 people (so if you have more people, make sure you adjust the quantities), and are very easy! Do all the prep work in your apartment and then take advantage of your on-site grills to grill up these foil-meals. Summer may be winding down, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy a beautiful late-summer night on your rooftop (Park View), balcony or grill station (Carson Street Commons), or pool and patio (City View).
1. Philly Cheesesteak Foil Packs (Recipe courtesy of Delish)
Ingredients: 1 lb. flank steak, thinly sliced; 2 bell peppers, thinly sliced; 1/2 onion, thinly sliced; 2 cloves garlic, minced; 2 tbsp. Italian seasoning; 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil; kosher salt; Freshly ground black pepper; 4 slices provolone
Directions: Heat grill to medium-high. In a large bowl, toss together steak, peppers, onion, garlic, Italian seasoning, and olive oil and season with salt and pepper; Place steak mixture in foil packs. Fold up packs and grill, 10 minutes; Open packs, top with provolone, and cover grill to melt, 2 minutes; serve with rolls or without.
2. Burgers ‘n Fries Foil Packs (Recipe courtesy of Delish)
Ingredients: Cooking spray, for foil; 1 lb. ground beef; 1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce; 1 tsp. garlic powder; kosher salt; Freshly ground black pepper; 1 lb. bag frozen fries; 4 slices cheddar; Pickles, for serving; Sliced tomatoes, for serving; Ketchup, for drizzling; Mustard, for drizzling
Directions: Heat grill to medium-high and spray 4 sheets of aluminum foil with cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, Worcestershire, and garlic powder and season with salt and pepper; Form into four patties; Place each patty on a sheet of aluminum foil with frozen fries. Fold up foil packs; Grill 10 minutes, then open foil packs and top patties with cheddar. Cover grill to let melt, 2 minutes; Top burgers with pickles and tomatoes and drizzle with ketchup and mustard.
3. Chicken, Tomatoes, and Corn Foil Packs (Recipe courtesy of Delish)
Ingredients: 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts; 2 c. grape tomatoes, halved; 2 ears corn, shucked; 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced; 1/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil, divided; 2 tbsp. butter; kosher salt; Freshly ground black pepper; Fresh basil, for garnish
Directions: Heat grill to high. Cut 4 sheets of foil about 12″ long.; Top each piece of foil with a chicken breast, tomatoes, corn, and garlic. Drizzle each with 1 tablespoon olive oil and top each with a pat of butter. Season with salt and pepper; Fold foil packets crosswise over chicken and vegetable mixture to completely cover the food. Roll top and bottom edges to seal closed.
Grill until internal temperature of chicken reads 170ºF on an instant-read thermometer and vegetables tender; Garnish with basil and serve.
If you try these meals this #LDW, share your experience with us on Facebook and Instagram!
This Monday is Labor Day! Kick back, relax, and pat yourself on the back for working so hard. We’ve put together a list of 5-must do Labor Day Weekend activities that are fun for the whole family.
The Kickoff and Rib Festival @ Heinz Field / August 31- September 4
The annual Heinz Field Kickoff and Rib Fest is a favorite of Pittsburghers. Thousands attend this festival to welcome Steelers season back to the ‘Burgh with ribs, football, live entertainment, family friendly activities and more. Thanks to The Pittsburgh Steelers and Heinz Field, admission to The Miller Lite Kickoff and Rib Festival and concert is free! (Description courtesy of Visit Pittsburgh)
The Pittsburgh Folk Festival @ Schenley Plaza in Oakland
The 59th annual Pittsburgh Folk Festival brings plenty of exciting fun, food and entertainment for the entire family to enjoy. From live performances by over 500 dancers and musicians, a bazaar with an International array of arts and crafts, a cafe that serves traditional ethnic cuisine, plus educational cultural exhibits…it’s the perfect excuse for getting out of the house and enjoying the weather. (Description courtesy of Visit Pittsburgh)
18th Annual Allegheny County Musical Festival @ Hartwood Acres / September 3 @ 5 p.m.
18th Annual Allegheny County Music Festival featuring Rusted Root with special guests The Velcro Shoes, The Buckledowns and Andre Costello & The Cool Minors. $20 per vehicle requested donation benefits the Allegheny County Department of Human Services. Opening bands start start at 5:00 p.m., and Rusted Root performs at 8:00 p.m. Food trucks and Hop Farm Brewing Company craft beer will be on site with food and beverages for sale. For the complete Summer Concert Series lineup, visit www.alleghenycounty.us/summer
Il Tetto Labor Day Luau @ Sienna Mercato / September 3 @ 4 p.m.
What better way to end the summer with our 2nd Annual Labor Day Luau!? We’ll have the grill goin’ while we sip on 12 unique tropical cocktails and bask in the skyline of downtown Pittsburgh. Free admission 21+. (Description courtesy of Sienna Mercato)
Mash Bill Summer Music Festival @ Wiggle Whiskey / September 2 @ 7 p.m.
Head to Wigle’s North Side Barrelhouse and Garden for a laidback music festival vibe complete with eclectic tunes, tasty cocktails and summer-themed fare for sale from the Food Baby and Wise County Biscuits Food Trucks. On September 2 enjoy acclaimed jazz guitarist Bill Purse (description courtesy of Next Pittsburgh)
In observance of Labor Day, the Management Offices of Park View Apartments, City View Apartments, and Carson Street Commons will be closed on Monday, September 4, 2017. Share your #LDW photos with us on Facebook and Instagram!
Just because the summer is coming to an end doesn’t mean the fun should! Through the last two weekends of August and the entire month of September, the Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival is open to the public rain or shine. This is a great event if you’re interested the late Medieval period (or you enjoy watching Game of Thrones, etc.), and is family-friendly, full of performances, and complete with amazing food and artisanal crafts (which are for purchase!). Below, we’ve listed all the NEW performers for this season, and we’re sure they won’t disappoint. There are also many returning performers that have visited the festival years prior, and they can be found at the bottom of this page: https://pittsburghrenfest.com/entertainment/.
The CRAIC Show
This group brings together music, laughter, and energy. Check out their website at www.TheCraicShow.com.
Lady Amyelia the Hypnotist
Your friends (or you) become the star of the show, and nothing is scripted! Watch them get hypnotized and be ready to laugh the entire time. For more information on Lady Amyelia, visit www.amyethehypnotist.com.
The Lady Victoria
Lady Victoria performs Celtic tunes on the Hammered Dulcimer, making this performance a combination of beautiful music with an ancient instrument. Sadly, she doesn’t have a website, so you’ll just have to head on down to the festival to check her out!
If you enjoy comedy, you’ll surely enjoy these “professional fools.” They ring bells, love life, and inspire other individuals. Visit their website at http://www.foolhearty.com/.
This is a magical due who enchant guests with vocals and other talents. They’ll be playing in the lanes of the village this season, so don’t forget to look for them!
The fun doesn’t end there. During the upcoming weekends, there are specific themes, which coincide with performers’ sets and the cast of villagers. Check out the theme calendar here: https://pittsburghrenfest.com/feedback/themed-weekends/ to decide if you have a favorite, or if you want to visit them all.
Searching for an apartment brings on a lot of questions. What location would I like to be in? Will I be safe here? Is the apartment clean? But one of the biggest questions is: Where will I fit all of my stuff? Finding an apartment to fit your belongings and your budget may seem like a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be! With plenty of dual-purpose furniture and DIY projects to tackle, you’re apartment will be an organized, cozy place to call home.
Below is just the beginning of many amazing ways to transform each room of your apartment and to truly savor the space you have.
Glass Table and Plastic Chairs: A transparent table with chairs allows your kitchen/dining area to look more open and it appears that the furniture is taking up less space.
Open Kitchen Shelving: Open Kitchen Shelving are visually appealing and don’t seem to take up as much space.
*Note: this only works if you keep your kitchen organized
The Living Room
Light, floor length curtains: Hanging long, floor length curtains makes your windows appear larger and the room more open. The use of light-colored curtains allows the sun to shine into the room making the room seem more airy.
Monochromatic Color Scheme:
Monochromatic color schemes appear peaceful to the eyes and allow things to seem more spacious.
Arm Rest Table: Mini tables for your armrest save you from having to take up space with end tables.
Coffee Table Storage: Coffee tables that double as a place to keep your things give you a place for storage and a place table for your drinks.
Curtain Separator: For those of you with studio apartments, using curtains to separate your living area from your bedroom presents the allusion that they are 2 separate rooms.
Large Mirror: Large mirrors can transform any small area into a more open one. The mirror makes the room seem double the size.
Good for Any Room.
Over the Door Organizer: Over the door organizers can hang anywhere from your kitchen, to your bathroom, to your bedroom making use of space that wouldn’t usually be taken advantage of. If you are a bit messy, hang it inside your door to keep it out of eyesight!
Hang Lamps: Hanging lamps from the ceiling saves floor space and table space.
For the past year and a half, Faros Residential has partnered with the Children’s Museum to sponsor their 21+MAKEnights. From snarky valentine parties, to Star Wars-themed nights, Faros has been a proud sponsor of these events that allow adults to feel like kids again at this hands-on museum, while sipping on some alcoholic drinks and eating light fare.
This September, the Children’s Museum 21+MAKEnight theme is Murder Mystery! The museum invites you to come as a sleuth or come as a spy for a night that is guaranteed to be a mysterious one full of making, beverages, and light fare.
Here are some of the activities you can expect on September 7, 2017 from 6:30-9:30pm:
- Doll up your duds with an embroidered handkerchief or brooch. Decorate with some fancy stitch work, or sew a pin to your finished piece!
- Do you have something to hide? Create your own hidden compartmentto house your treasures, or your secrets…
- Need to go incognito? Change your appearance by making your own disguise!
- Experience mystery and intrigue as you explore our various exhibits, searching for clues to ourcoded message scavenger hun Those who solve our riddles will be entered in a raffle to win prizes!
- Make your own monocle and use it to look closely for clues.
- Print a secret message with glow in the dark ink!
- Jot down clues while exploring Calligraphy.
- Make a candle to help light the way on your path to the answers.
- Take turns tracing a silhouetteof you and your friends.
- Don’t forget to come dressed to impress, it could be your last chance…
- Enjoy a glass of bubbles kindly donated byBarefoot Wine
As part of our sponsorship, all Faros Residential residents receive $12 discounted tickets! Typically, tickets to this event run $20-$25 depending on whether you purchase online or at the door. Thankfully, as a Faros resident, you save 50%!
Tickets include light fare, non-alcoholic drinks and all activities; alcohol is complimentary of the Children’s Museum with a 2-drink maximum. This is a 21+ event.
To redeem your discounted $12 tickets, visit this link:
https://shop.pittsburghkids.org/e-commerce/ItemList.aspx?node_id=190113 and enter Promo Code: faros2016 (yes, it’s the same as last year’s!).
Buy your tickets early because this event usually sells out! We’ll see you there in September!
Who doesn’t like a sweet treat every now and then? When you’re craving something sweet – be it a brownie, cookie, cobbler, or fruit – it’s a pleasure to relieve that desire by baking or buying what you’re craving.
While you’re treating yourself to something sweet, check out these two recipes for homemade dog and cat biscuits so that you don’t have to eat alone!
Fido-Friendly Biscuits: Pumpkin-Peanut Butter Treats
Your dog will be the most appreciative recipient of these homemade biscuits. And, as an added bonus – they’re super easy to make.
Ingredients: 1 cup pumpkin (canned), ½ cup peanut butter, 2 eggs, ¼ cup oil, 2 ½ cups whole wheat flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, glaze (2 tablespoons bacon grease, melted, ¼ cup smooth peanut butter)
Directions: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees; combine pumpkin, peanut butter, eggs, and oil in a bowl; add in baking soda and whole wheat flour; stir until stiff dough forms; knead dough or mix just until flour is incorporated; roll out dough with a rolling pin and use a cookie cutter to shape (or roll into balls); bake for 15 minutes; whisk the bacon grease and peanut butter until smooth; drizzle over the treats and cool till glaze hardens (it does best in the fridge or freezer).
Recipe courtesy of “Pinch of Yum” http://pinchofyum.com/homemade-dog-treats
Feline-Friendly Biscuits: Catnip Biscuits
If you regularly feed your cat catnip, here’s a new spin – baking catnip biscuits.
Ingredients: 1 ½ cups wheat or white flour, 1 ½ teaspoons catnip, 1/3 cup powdered milk, ½ cup milk, 2 tablespoons butter (softened), 1 tablespoon honey, 1 egg
Directions: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees; stir dry ingredients together in a large bowl; mix in wet ingredietns to form a soft dough; add a little more flour if the dough is too sticky; turn out dough onto a non-stick baking sheet and roll out; carefully cut the dough into bite-sized squares; bake for approx. 20 minutes or until golden brown; remove treats from tray; let them cool on a baking rack.
Recipe courtesy of “Love To Know” http://cats.lovetoknow.com/Recipe_for_Homemade_Cat_Treats
Fido & Feline Friendly
It is important to note that while your pets may love treats, they are only good in moderation. Check out this article from the Animal Hospital of North Asheville for more information: http://www.ahna.net/healthy-treats-your-pet
Faros Perks Program
Not much of a baker? Treat your loved ones to a treat at Wagsburgh on E. Ohio Street in the North Side! This one-stop-shop has all you need for your pet. From food and toys to grooming supplies, you can use your Perks card to redeem discounts at this local shop. Visit their website for more information! http://www.wagspgh.com/
When the first few days of the month roll around, you know what that means—a whole new events blog dedicated to that entire month! There are a lot of fun events coming up in August, and they deserve celebration, because sadly this is the last month of summer. While we’re not eager to let it go, we have events listed below that are sure to end the month with a bang—why not soak up what’s left of the summer with these amazing activities?
So, without further ado, here are some events we’ve rounded up for this month’s newsletter.
EQT Water Week at the Children’s Museum
- This event runs all week, so you have plenty of time to check it out. What’s more, it’s located at the Children’s Museum, making it the perfect location for Park View and City View residents (don’t worry Carson Street, we’ve got South Side events listed). Activities during this week will focus on the “wonders of water,” with carnival games, ice sculptures, arts and crafts, and more. To discover more about this, visit https://pittsburghkids.org/events/3585/2017/8/7.
Tours at the Old Allegheny County Jail Museum
- Pittsburgh is known for its rich history, and there are various historic sites around the city that make for great day trips. One such site is the Allegheny County Jail, where one cell block was preserved as a museum in 2001. Built in 1886, this is sure to deliver some history and stories. Check out the event page at http://phlf.org/event/self-guided-tours-old-allegheny-county-jail-35/. Did we mention it’s free?
Food for Thought
- Recent Point Park University graduate Flannery Joyce is hosting her senior show at the Gallery on 43rd Street until August 19th. Joyce photographed people’s meals in the environments in which they eat, revealing personality traits and preferences. If you like art and food, this might be the event for you. Visit the Gallery’s homepage at http://galleryon43rdstreet.com to find out more.
Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play
- Starting August 3rd, a “pop culture comedy” will make its way to the stage in this post-apocalyptic Simpsons-themed performance. Rife with humor, drama, and excitement, this play will leave you thinking. Visit http://www.12peerstheater.org for more information.
Escape Room Pittsburgh
- This event takes place year-round, and if you enjoy a challenge, you’ll enjoy this. Teams are tested to use their surroundings, cleverness, and problem-solving skills to “escape the room” by hunting for clues and tools that will lead to their freedom. The different themes are Carnegie’s Millions, Tomb Explorer, Dr. Stein’s Laboratory, and Prison Escape, so you have a choice in which one you want to experience, and if you like the first one, you have three more to try! Escape Rooms have been popping up all over the country, and for good reason—they’re fun, promote teamwork, and heighten creativity. If you’re interested in giving this a try, visit https://www.escaperoompgh.com.
Are you as excited about these events as we are? Share your experience with us on Instagram @farosresidential with the hashtag #CelebrateAugust, and make sure to check our Facebook pages for more residential news at www.facebook.com/CarsonStreetApts, www.facebook.com/CityViewPgh, and www.facebook.com/ParkViewApts. Now go out there and live up the rest of your summer!
Depending on your apartment – whether it’s Carson Street Commons, City View Apartments, or Park View Apartments, you are responsible for different utilities. If you find yourself wondering if there are ways to reduce your bills whether it’s in this apartment or your next home, check out these helpful energy saving tips.
Keep your fridge full
We’re used to hearing, “Keep the fridge closed!” but there is a better way of keeping it cool in there. If you keep your fridge full, all the items in there are more likely to act as insulation, which minimizes the energy your fridge uses to keep it cool.
Line dry your laundry
It’s no secret how much energy your dryer can use . If you have a dryer in your apartment, you can use a garment rack to hang-dry your clothes instead. Save up some money by line drying your clothes.
Adjust your dish washer
Turn off the heat dry on your dish washer (if you have one). This saves up a lot of electricity that is being used to steam dry your dirty dishes. At the end of the cycle, let your load sit until it dries.
Avoid hand washing dishes
When you wash dishes by hand, gallons of water can be wasted. Instead, make sure you fill up your dishwasher and run it to save water.
Don’t defrost foods with running water.
Running your water can use up to two gallons per minute. A good way to save this water is by putting your frozen foods the night before on the fridge. This way they will defrost while you’re sleeping.
Decorate with drought resistant plants
Let’s be honest. Most of the time people forget to water their plants, but when they do, they drown then in copious amounts of water. Solve this problem by getting drought resistant plants that only required to be watered every other day. Not only will you have a plant that survives a long time but also one that is easy to take care of and saves you money.
How to Lower Your Gas Bill
Make sure vents aren’t covered
It seems like vents are always located in the most inconvenient places, usually where your furniture goes. Instead of having your couches against the vents, remember to keep at least two or three inches in between to help the air circulate.
Who doesn’t like to watch a movie all cuddled up with a bunch of blankets?
Whether you use these tips now, or in the future, it’s always good to know ways to save energy and save money.
One great perk of living at Park View, City View, and Carson Street Commons is that our apartment communities are all PET FRIENDLY! We know your pets are part of your family, and we appreciate your furry friends, no matter the size (though we do have some breed restrictions). Because many of the residents own dogs, we decided to end the week with some tips on how to dog-proof your apartment.
Let’s face it: our canine companions, while they are loyal, can also be destructive and sometimes a little bit too curious. Did Max find his food bag in the cabinet again and rip it open, only to spill kibble all over the floor? Did Daisy get into the toilet paper, causing you to come home to a mummified apartment? Well we have some remedies that will prevent these incidents from happening. Listed below are some excellent tips to keeping your furry friends out of the cabinets and away from breakables.
- Keep things out of reach that could be potentially harmful to your pet. There’s a list of plants that are potentially life-threatening to dogs, which you can find here: https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants. This also goes for cables, i.e. phone chargers or wires, that dogs could easily chew on. Put these things in a high place, like a kitchen counter top, or perhaps behind furniture, so your pet is less likely to snack on them.
- Spray furniture with no-chew spray (don’t worry, it’s non-toxic!) This will teach your pup to stop chewing the upholstery, because the spray tastes bitter, therefore making the furniture a little less appetizing.
- Baby gates make for a great containment system. Place them in areas where you don’t want your dog to go, or block off a section of a room that is strictly for your dog (like their own little play pen).
- Make sure to close doors where you don’t want your dog to go, like your bedroom. Even though we train our dogs to go to the bathroom outside, everyone has accidents, right? If you close the door to specific rooms, you can ensure these accidents won’t happen in places that may make you a little angrier than others.
- When going out, make sure to put your dog in a crate, or like suggested in #4, section off an area for him or her. Fill the enclosure with toys or something to keep your dog occupied (like a Kong© with peanut butter), and your pet will most likely keep to themselves rather than entertain (destroy) the furniture.
- Store your food wisely! We’ve known a few dogs and cats to jump on the counter when nobody is looking and take table scraps, etc., so make sure to properly contain your snacks/leftovers and place them in a high location, like on top of the fridge or in a high cabinet. This also goes for potentially poisonous items like cigarettes, coffee grounds, chocolate, and household cleaners.
Are you well-practiced when it comes to dog-proofing your apartment? Share your tips with us on Instagram @farosresidential with the hashtag #DogApproofed, or on our individual City View, Park View, and Carson Street Commons Facebook pages. If you’re a new pet owner, let us know if these tips worked by sharing pictures also @farosresidential with #DogApproofed.
We all know what “clutter” is. Though there is no one object that makes up clutter, there are many forms of it—newspapers, old clothing, shoes, pictures, books—anything in your house that just kind of sits there collecting dust. You may be ignoring the pile of junk mail on your desk, holding onto that dress from six years ago “just in case,” but no matter what the reasoning, there are simple steps to de-cluttering your apartment space, which will help you feel refreshed and ready to host that next party!
We’ve compiled some tips from different websites (and experts!) to give you varying approaches in taking care of all that…stuff. Everyone has clutter, and most of us want to get rid of it, or at least make it look like we did. Below, you’ll find lists of how to completely rid your apartment of clutter and how to better organize your space so you can find more room for yourself (or more stuff, we don’t judge).
A great way to clean out closet space is to donate anything you haven’t worn in the past six months. While this can pose as a challenge (again, some of us “save” things “just in case”), it doesn’t have to be bittersweet! In fact, it can feel refreshing. You’ll have more room for clothes you do wear, and your closet will look a whole lot bigger. In fact, you probably won’t even notice that t-shirt from last year’s marathon is missing.
Something that we tend to forget about is expired makeup. Most products have a shelf life, which is located on the packaging, and is usually no longer than six or twelve months. If you just keep piling makeup into your makeup bag, you might want to look inside and check those expiration dates. Your skin will thank you, and your bathroom sink won’t be covered in piles of old products, making your bathroom look much cleaner!
We all tend to forget about food products that we’ve bought, whether it sits in the back of the fridge in a container, or generates freezer burn over the course of a few months. Take the time to tidy up your fridge—throw away anything that looks moldy, unappetizing, or just plain mysterious. The same thing goes for products in the freezer; toss the microwavable dinners that you forgot about, and when buying new food, date each one so you can remember exactly when you bought it and therefore how old it is. This will open space in your fridge and save you from buying food you don’t need! The same thing goes for expired food in your pantry. Or, if you have any canned goods that aren’t expired, but you don’t necessarily want, why not donate them?
From I Dream of Clean:
This website is catered toward the emotional side of letting things go, which is also a huge step in going clutter-free (or at least clutter-reduced). If you don’t want to completely rid your closet of everything you haven’t worn in the past sixth months, try the one-in, one-out method. When you buy something new, take that as an opportunity to get rid of something old. That way, you aren’t adding to your closet, but instead replacing old garments with ones you’ll get use out of.
It’s recommended that you don’t keep something just because it’s sentimental. You can take a picture of it, or maybe make something useful (like a pillow out of the fabric), and that way it either takes up less space, or is repurposed.
From Becoming Minimalist:
The steps to cleaning up clutter don’t have to feel personal. Those rubber bands and extra take-out sauces in your kitchen drawer have probably just been forgotten, and all that drawer requires is a little time and dedication to have the space looking tidy again.
An important step in the process is forming habits—clean up after you cook, don’t leave dishes waiting for the next morning, put things back where they belong after using them, and finish tasks once you’ve started them. This way, the space will remain tidy, and you’ll know to keep it tidy once you form these habits.
Cleaning up clutter is a battle, and often not the most fun activity, but after tidying up, you feel so much better. Everyone has clutter, whether it’s visible or not, and you can follow the steps above to help de-clutter your life. You’ll feel a lot better, and your apartment will thank you. We’d love to see if these tips worked for you, so send us your before-and-after pictures of the clean-up! Share with us on Instagram @farosresidential with the hashtag #conquerthatclutter, and check-in with us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CityViewPgh, www.facebook.com/ParkViewPgh, or www.facebook.com/CarsonStreetApts.
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