Interview: Improve Your Home’s Energy Efficiency with HouseSmarts TV Lou Manfredini

Is your home ready for winter storms and colder weather? If you’re a home owner looking to make your home more energy efficient this season, you’re in luck! HouseSmarts TV host Lou Manfredini stopped by recently to discuss common myths about energy efficiency, and share tips on how you can make your home more energy efficient with the latest technology, new windows or even just by moving some furniture!

 

HouseSmarts TV host Lou Manfredini discusses energy efficiency. Image courtesy of HouseSmartsTV.com.

HouseSmarts TV host Lou Manfredini discusses energy efficiency. Image courtesy of HouseSmartsTV.com.

 

 


 

Candace Rose: With winter nearly upon us what can homeowners do to improve their home’s energy efficiency this season?

Lou Manfredini: “Well, one of the simplest things, Candace, that doesn’t cost anything at all is to check the arrangement of your furniture. Look, you’ve got forced air heat in your home or maybe you’re heating your home with a radiator, if furniture is covering those vents or something’s up against that radiator your system inside your home has to work harder to bring it up to the temperature that you’ve set your thermostat at. And when it has to work harder to do that, you use more energy which means it costs you money. If you can slightly rearrange the furniture or pull it away from a vent that is covered you’d be amazed at how much more comfortable you are and how much money you could save.”

Candace Rose: And how can we use technology like smartphones to improve energy efficiency?

Lou Manfredini: “Well, there’s a bunch of different thermostats that are out there now (programmable thermostats) which by themselves is great technology, but can now be hooked up to a smartphone. And the idea behind this is that you can control the temperature no matter where you are. The thermostat gets connected to your home WIFI system and then there’s a program that connects the two together, so if you’re going to head out of town or you maybe programmed it to set back at a certain temperature when you’re going to come home early you can reset it so that it gets to the temperature you want it at. It gives you better control, and if there’s ever a problem with your furnace (maybe it stops working) it’ll send you an alert so you know you need to call somebody to check it out before pipes start to freeze.”

 

Candace Rose: What are some other things homeowners can do to make an impact on energy efficiency in his or her home?

Lou Manfredini: “I want you to take a really good look at your windows and doors in your home because this is the area of greatest loss. I’ve spent the last 10 years working with the Marvin window company because I install those windows in the homes that I build and renovate because they’re problem-free for me and for my clients whose homes that they’re living in. Their wood windows (to me) give you the best value at a proposition – you can paint or stain it. The design capabilities are limitless of what you will do inside of your home. And on the exterior side with the high performance glass and the aluminum cladding, you have no worries as far as maintenance goes.

To me this is a window that 25 years from now we’re going to have a conversation about how much you still love them and how much they’re still giving you the energy efficiency that you paid for earlier and that they still operate and that they’re still working.”

 

Candace Rose: Do you have any suggestions when shopping for windows?

Lou Manfredini: “Go with brand names because brand does matter when you go to sell, and it’s that whole value added proposition. Now of course as I mentioned I work with the Marvin folks, I have a bunch of energy efficient tips that you can find at Marvin.com/Energy. And there’s even a promotion going on right now called their Smart Performance Promotion where one person can win $5,000 to put towards the purchase of new windows and doors. So that’s money savings that has nothing to do with energy, it has a direct effect on your bottom line.”

 

Candace Rose: Are there any common myths or misconceptions about energy efficiency that you’d like to dispel?

Lou Manfredini: “A lot of people think they can’t do stuff themselves – they think, ‘well, I have to have someone come in and do this’. But the fact of the matter is if you eliminate drafts coming into your home by putting in weatherstripping that you can do yourself, whether it’s a self-stick weatherstripping that you put around doors that are leaking air (this is something that anybody can do) or if you have those vents and switch plates where you feel that draft when you’re next to it. This is something anyone can do – pennies of an investment and just a little bit of time, and it’s a remarkable difference in the overall comfort in your home and your bottom line energy usage to keep more money in your wallet.”

Candace Rose: Where can viewers go for more information?

Lou Manfredini: “They can find additional tips at Marvin.com/Energy.”

Interview: Crop Artist Stan Herd Discusses his New End Of The World Project with Shock Top Beer

If the Mayans have it right, the world will soon be ending. Are you ready? Instead of panicking about it, the fine folks at Shock Top decided to commemorate the potential occasion by creating their End Of The World Midnight Wheat beer, and hiring renowned earthworks/crop artist Stan Herd to create their logo in a wheat field utilizing the same ingredients for the design as the well known beer company used for their Midnight Wheat beer. The two are celebrating the occasion at the sold out Denver Great American Beer Festival this weekend, and Stan joined me yesterday to discuss everything from what goes into his design projects to the time frame and everything in between!

Candace Rose: You’re such a talented artist, your crop art has been throughout the world. What goes into creating such a beautiful and unique work of art?

Stan Herd: “You have to start first with the right location, the right field, the right site. We like to do something off the end of the runway of an airport so we have a lot of viewers. We’re seven miles off of Denver airport. This is a wheat field. We saved the wheat and then we subtracted the image out of wheat and on this particular project it’s for Shock Top, and they’re promoting their new product called Shock Top End Of The World Midnight Wheat and it’s a wheat beer. I grew up on a wheat farm; my family for generations farmed wheat and so it was a nice tie. On this piece we actually got to incorporate some of the materials that were used in the beer, and that’s chilis, chocolate malt, and oranges and then a lot of other materials.”

Candace Rose: Can you tell us about your latest, End Of The World creation?

Stan Herd: “This piece is for the Great American Beer Festival, it’s an annual event in Denver, Colorado. It’s the largest beer festival in the United States, and Shock Top asked me to get involved. I actually created three pieces for them last year in three different states, so we decided to do something special here for the End Of The World which everybody knows is impending. We came out and found a five acre wheat field, got people involved – the ag extension agents, local farmers, the people over at Arbor Tree and we set about two months ago, carving this out and creating this design on five acres. We celebrated last night with a great party and a band. We had a choreographed group of people light up the Live Life Unfiltered at the end underneath the four helicopters, so it was a lot of fun.”


Renowned Earthwork artist Stan Herd’s beautiful Shock Top End Of The World creation!

 

Candace Rose: How long does a particular project like this, from planning to completion usually take?

Stan Herd: “We’ve been here probably about five or six months from when we first started talking with the design folks at Shock Top and my group. We go through a lot before we ever reach the field, to try to decide how we’re going to do it, where we’re going to do it, what we want it to look like, how to make it unique. Our hope is that every time we do something, it’s a little different and a little beyond what we’ve done before. As an artist that’s what inspires me is that I want to be pushing the envelope a little bit and stepping out what I’ve done before, and I think this piece mirrors that.”

Candace Rose: Do you have any additional information you’d like to share with us?

Stan Herd: “Well, the festival is happening this weekend, and if you want to see any of the imagery – I had a great crew of guys do a time lapsed video of this, so we had a 65 foot boom in the field and these guys followed us around for the last six weeks of the project and captured the whole thing. You can go to Shock Top’s Facebook page and probably see some of that today, if not very soon. I think there will be photographs on very quickly.

Then come to the Beer Festival. We’re going to be tasting the Midnight Wheat tonight, it’s a dark beer that’s really good.”

Interview: The Season’s Hottest Beauty Trends & Must Haves with Beauty Expert Ning Chao

Can you believe that October is officially upon us? By now your summer tan has probably begun to fade and your beauty routine is in dire need of change, if you haven’t altered it already. Bicoastal beauty editor Ning Chao joined me recently to chat about prepping your skin for cooler weather, how to get a beautiful faux glow, and my favorite of all, a fabulous brush that cuts blow dry time by 30%. YES, PLEASE!!! And the best part is they’re all available at the drugstore. Can’t beat that! She also dropped hints on the hottest beauty trends we’ll all be coveting this season. Bye bye neons, hello gemstone colors!

 

 

Beauty editor Ning Chao with the biggest beauty buys and top trends for fall 2012!

 

 

 



 

 


Candace Rose: With fall upon us, what are the biggest beauty must haves this season and where do we start?

Ning Chao: “Whenever the seasons change, you always want to start with skincare. It’s a good time to update your skincare routine and make changes based on what your skin needs. So now that we’re turning into fall and it’s getting a little bit colder, your skin is going to be naturally drier and a little more red and irritated, so that’s why I love the new Simple’s Facial Skincare Line. It has all the good ingredients and none of the bad. The moisturizing facial wash cleanses and nourishes the skin with pro vitamin B5. There’s also vitamin E. I love how soft it makes my face feel. It’s perfect even for sensitive skin. It’s available at Walmart for $6.99. For more information about the entire line you should go to Simple’s Facebook page.”

 

 

Candace Rose: How about for the body?

Ning Chao: “Now that summer is over you might be missing your sun kissed glow. But you can actually prolong it all year round with the Jergen’s Natural Glow collection. I actually love this because I feel a sun kissed glow makes your skin look more radiant, and makes you look younger and more healthy, and a little bit slimmer too. This is a daily moisturizer that has a built in touch of self tanner. It actually lasts longer- twice as long as other self tanning lotions. It’s packed with antioxidants, there’s vitamin E so you’re really nourishing your skin at the same time. You can replace your body lotion with it, and it’s easy to apply. It comes in two shades- there’s fair to medium, and medium to tan. My advice is that if you’re somebody who is paler or who has avoided the sun all summer to start with the fair to medium, and then you can build up your glow. Or if you naturally have darker skin or if you want to get more of an easier bronzier color you can go to medium to tan. It’s very natural, it’s a gradual self tanner.”

 

 

Candace Rose: What are the latest hair trends, and must haves for hair?

Ning Chao: “With hair for the fall, it’s really about healthy shiny hair. I have long hair, it takes forever for my hair to dry and then I have to style it, which is totally a nightmare because it takes so long. But then I discovered the Goody QuikStyle Brush Collection which has saved me time because it’s like a towel and a brush in one. You can see that it’s very unique looking- there are two types of bristles. There are ball tip bristles that detangle and smooth your hair and also these blue microfiber bristles which are like little mini sponges that actually remove water from the hair so that your hair dries faster and you don’t have to spend as much time blow drying it and putting heat on  it. It’s great because when you use it to just detangle your hair, you’re removing 30% of water while you’re just brushing your hair. That really cuts down on drying time, you don’t have to style it for as long. It comes in two types- there’s a paddle which is really big, which I like on my hair because my hair is really long and I can just detangle my hair really fast with it. There’s also the new half round styling brush which you can see has a curved shape (it’s almost like a half moon) so that shape is going to lift your hair and add body while you’re blow drying. You can literally go out of the shower when your hair is soaking wet and you detangle it with this brush, and then you put a blow dryer on it and you don’t need to use a separate styling brush, this one you can style with two. It’ll replace your round brush, you don’t have to go back in with the curling iron, you’re all ready to go and you’ve saved a lot of time in the morning.”

 


Totally convinced I need this Goody QuikStyle Brush!

 

Candace Rose: What are the top makeup trends?

Ning Chao: “For this season it’s all about a cat eyeliner. You can either go dramatic or you can go very demure with it. But it’s more of a swoop eyeliner. There’s also a lot of gemstone eye shadows that are really popular- think sapphire blue or an amethyst purple, emerald greens; and also a deeper burgundy color lip. So red lips are always in fashion for fall, but this year it’s a little bit deeper in a burgundy kind of shade.”

 

 

Candace Rose: Nails were really big over the summer. What are the top colors for nails this season?

Ning Chao: “It’s actually more about green this fall. It’s not so much a bright, bright green but almost like a teal color which I think is really beautiful.”

For more information please visit Lifeminute.tv, and be sure to check out Ning  at NingKnowsBest.com and on Twitter @NYLANing!

Interview: Football Tailgating 101 with Renowned Sportscaster Rich Hollenberg

With the Cleveland Browns taking on the Baltimore Ravens tomorrow night, and week four of the NFL season nearly upon us, renowned sportscaster Rich Hollenberg, who has covered eight Super Bowls, joined us to chat about throwing the perfect tailgate party everyone is sure to love. From cooking up a delicious meal, to great drinks and the dreaded cleanup, Rich has everything you need to ensure your tailgate party is a hit, even if your team doesn’t come out with the win!

 


Sportscaster and cooking expert Rich Hollenberg shares his must have tailgating tips! Image courtesy of RichCooks.blogspot.com

 

 



 

 

 

Candace Rose: What’s the secret to throwing a great tailgate party everyone is sure to love?

Rich Hollenberg: “Well, it’s really simple. You don’t have to go all out, you don’t have to spend a fortune, Candace. What you want to do is just be smart and keep it simple. So make sure you get to the tailgate section as early as possible, maybe give yourself three hours. Stake out a good spot, start firing up your grill then so it’s nice and hot when you’re ready to eat. Then you want to open up a bag of chips right away because everybody usually comes to a tailgate party on the hungry side. I like to use Tostito Brand tortilla chips. You can use the restaurant style or you can use any brand that you find in the supermarket from Tostito’s. They also have a salsa that’s a special tailgate edition salsa. It’s thick and chunky, and when you combine those two any time is a great time for a party. To take it up one more level, you might want to take that great salsa and add mango or some diced pineapple to it; put on a side of guac. and then everyone knows you’re not messing around, that you are a serious tailgater right from the get go.

     You fired up your grill when you first got there, so I always like to go with traditional brats. Johsonville Brats are really full of flavor, and they’re really filling, that way you don’t have to spend a fortune on concessions outside the stadium. I like to keep it traditional with buns, and ketchup and mustard, but I also like to make what I call a Reuben Brat Hoagie. It takes all those great elements of a deli Reuben sandwich and combines it with a brat, so you have your sauerkraut, your Swiss cheese, your thousand island dressing, put it all on a roll with the sliced up grilled brats, and that is a sandwich that everyone will remember long after the game is over. And if you don’t like that idea you can certainly go to Johnsonville.com or visit their Facebook page and get a lot of other recipes.”

Candace Rose: Do you have any suggestions when it comes to drinks?

Rich Hollenberg: “I do and it’s something that might be a little bit surprising for people who check out your blog, Candace- everyone talks about beer when it comes to tailgating and that’s great, but I always like to give somebody an alternative to beer. This is it- it’s called Refresh by Turning Leaf, and you have three varietals. You have the Crisp White, Moscato, and Red Moscato. They’re slightly fizzy, they’re lightly refreshing and what you can do with them is almost endless. You can put them over ice, chilled; you can use it as the base for a new cocktail, which is really interesting and they only cost about $8 a bottle so it’s affordable and it fits right inside your tailgating budget.”

Candace Rose: What can we do to ensure cleanup is a breeze?

Rich Hollenberg: “It doesn’t get any easier than this, this might be the secret tip of all- don’t clean up. What you want to do is take all the leftovers that you have, because it’s always good to have more than not enough, Candace; take them all, pack them all in a cooler. Keep them in your car, and whether your team wins or loses, you come out to the parking lot, you don’t have to deal with traffic. You can either celebrate a win or cry over the loss, but you can do that drinking good drinks and eating good food.”

Candace Rose: Do you have any additional tips or information you’d like to share?

Rich Hollenberg: “Well, if you want to find out more about any of the things we talked about, there are certain websites for Tostitos, so you can go to Frito-Lay.com. You can also go to TurningLeaf.com for the Refresh that we talked about, and you can also go to Johnsonville.com or as I mentioned, go to their Facebook page and you can find lots of great brat recipes.

Celeb Images: Actress Ashley Greene and Model Lauren Bush-Lauren Kick Off Women’s Health Run 10 Feed 10 in New York

Actress Ashley Greene, model and FEED Foundation Chairman Lauren Bush Lauren, Television correspondents Michelle Beadle (of Access Hollywood), Cat Greenleaf (of Talk Stoop) and Stephanie Abrams (of The Weather Channel); Women’s Health Publisher, Laura Frerer-Schmidt; Women’s Health Editor-in-Chief, Michele Promaulayko; kicked off Women’s Health magazine’s Run 10 Feed 10 inaugural 10k marathon to help curb domestic hunger at Pier 84 at Hudson River Park in New York City on Sunday, September 23rd. Runners were treated to a warm up with Yogi Emilie Smith and performances by Industrial Rhythm and The Students from the Elisabeth Morrow School, gifts and contests from sponsors, and a Women’s Health Inspiration Station with tattoos, sign-making materials, hair bands and more! Be sure to visit  www.RUN10FEED10.com for more information or to sign up for a race in your community.

Ashley Greene at the Women’s Health Run 10 Feed 10 start line in New York City.

 

 

Model and FEED Foundation Chairman Laura Bush Lauren and actress Ashley Greene at the Women’s Health Run 10 Feed 10 10k event in New York City.