Looking out over the Pacific Ocean, amid a lush garden and surrounded by trees, Wayfarers Chapel resides in Rancho Palos Verdes. Made almost entirely of glass, the chapel allows visitors to look through its walls and take in all the nature surrounding it, including the ocean view. Whether religious or not, the beauty of Wayfarers Chapel is for everyone to experience.
Completed in 1951, Wayfarers Chapel is the work of Lloyd Wright, son of pioneering architect Frank Lloyd Wright. It’s attributes were inspired by the theology of the Swedenborgian Church (which it is sponsored by) that focuses on connecting God’s natural world and the inner world of mind and spirit.
Wright saw the trees of the redwood forest and wanted to create a “tree chapel.” While it is known as the “glass church,” the trees surrounding the chapel are a very prominent feature and are seen through the glass, forming living walls and a roof.
It is called “wayfarers” as an attribute to the travelers who could come and rest here. Originally, when there weren’t freeways and easy road access, the travel to this church could take an entire day. It is still applicable today even though it is more easily accessed, since we are all traveler’s to get to the church. As Reverend Harvey Tafel says, we are also all traveler’s on the journey of life.
The chapel performs weddings, baptisms, and other services along with worship services. In addition, they have a garden and visitor’s center for anyone that would like to stop by and see the chapel, taking in all the beauty that resides in and around it.
The outdoor pathways and walkways of your home don’t have to be boring or ugly, only getting you from one point to another. They can be a feature that adds aesthetic value and interest to your property, blending both form and function.
Yes, you can be creative with walkways and pathways, and the results can be both beautiful and practical.
Knowing where to start with this endeavor, however, can be tough. Not only is there the design to think about, but also what materials should be used, and how it will integrate with the rest of your outdoor space. Here are a few ideas for some inspiration:
The gravel walkway. This is an easy way to bring character and easy maintenance to a natural feeling walkway or pathway. Add stone or wood edging for a more formal feel, or have varying widths with no borders, and create casual curves to incorporate all of the landscaping. Here is an idea from Houzz.com and some other examples from BHG.com.
The log look. This is a natural, rustic look that can also be visually pleasing to match your garden space. The log pathway can carry the natural feeling from the different spaces it buffers, and can be designed into any shape to fit the spaces. Here’s an example from Pinterest.
The mosaic design. Use small stones of varying colors to create a mosaic design that stands out for its aesthetic value. A curved design, like this one on Pinterest, can be pleasing to the eye and match the surrounding space, or a straight, edged version like these can create a more distinct walkway.
Use lighting to lead the way. Use lighting to help define your walkway and lead the way to where you’re going. Try rope lighting along the stone or brick edging, like this idea from Pinterest, or go way beyond the norm with glow-in-the-dark paint on your walkway.
Utilize shapes and sizes. Use eco-friendly tiles or stone slabs in similar sizes to create an elegant look that naturally leads the eye forward, like this example from Houzz.com, and incorporate curves like this example on Inthralld.com for a serpentine feel. Offset materials of different sizes to create different geometric shapes like this or this from Houzz.com.
Many homeowners prefer stone countertops for their natural beauty, longevity, and easy maintenance. But many homeowners also don’t know the do’s and don’ts of taking care of their stone countertops.
There are more than a few tips to ensure that your natural stone countertops stay beautiful and provide decades of trouble-free use. Once you know a few of the basics for maintaining stone countertops, there’s a lot less stress when one of those accidental spills occur. Here’s a primer on what you need to know about how to clean natural stone countertops.
Do clean up all spills immediately when you see them before they penetrate.
Do not allow these items on your countertops, especially without a coaster, as they can damage the surface: Drano, nail polish remover, vinegar, alcohol, citrus juices, ketchup, mustard, vinegar, rock salt, sand, shaving cream, and dishwashing soap.
Do make sure your countertops are sealed before using any type of cleaning product on them.
Do not set abrasive objects on your countertops. Grit, sand, scouring powders, and even porcelain dishes with unglazed bases, can damage the sheen of stone.
Do have your supplier seal the countertop several times as soon as it's installed and then again a year later. It is sealed properly when water forms droplets on the surface.
Do not use scouring powders or creams on your countertops, as they contain abrasives that may scratch the surface.
Do consult a professional about which sealer to use on your particular style of stone, [suggests Housebeautiful.com http://www.housebeautiful.com/decorating/organize/maintenance-stone-countertops-0508].
Do not use products that contain lemon, vinegar or other acids as their high acid content may etch the surface. Same for cleaners that contain acid such as bathroom cleaners, grout cleaners or tile cleaners.
Do try this cleaning solution from [Motherearthliving.com http://www.motherearthliving.com/mother-earth-living/good-to-know-hone-your-stone.aspx#axzz3FalRRlFI] if you want to clean your countertops naturally: 2 tablespoons biodegradable liquid soap and 3 3/4 cups water in a spray bottle. Wipe with a clean, soft cloth.
Do try using a paste made of flour and hydrogen peroxide, [suggests This Old House http://www.thekitchn.com/quick-cleaning-tip-use-flour-to-clean-stained-countertops-this-old-house-165118]. Mix and leave to sit overnight, and it will pull the stain off surface.
Do use a stain-removing poultice for bad stains, following these steps provided by marble-institute.com.
Next time you're out and about with the family in South Bay, put the Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium at the end of the Manhattan Beach Pier on your list of things to see.
The Roundhouse is a non-profit organization committed to promoting the study of the oceans, beaches and marine life of Southern California and the impact humans have on the environment. A visit is free, along with a suggested donation, and the unique experience is one kids won't get anywhere else.
The aquarium features rotating displays and exhibits, as well as a shark tank, a living reef tank and a tide pool touch tank with species native to Southern California that you actually get to touch, like starfish, sharks, eels and other fish. While the aquarium is small and quaint, it is also more than a diversion for the little ones, it's a great opportunity to learn about the world around them.
Roundhouse also hosts a number of classes, parties, field trips and community events held regularly throughout the year focused on education and learning about the environment, including festivities like a Fun Run, Coastal Cleanup Day and [Manhattan Beach Cleanup and Heal the Bay IPA Tasting http://www.healthebay.org/event/manhattan-beach-cleanup-and-heal-bay-ipa-tasting]. One of the biggest events is the eight weeks of Science Summer Camp, where kids ages 4-10 can dig for sand crabs, build sand sculptures and learn about the ocean and marine animals.
For more information visit the [Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium website http://www.roundhouseaquarium.org/index.html] and check out their [Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Roundhouse-Marine-Studies-Lab-and-Aquarium/64031319675].
Does keeping your kids productive and on track when it comes to their homework turn into work for you? It might be time to create a homework headquarters at home.
Creating and designing a specialized homework space for kids is a great step to making them more organized and productive. Take the project as far as you want it, but even just a few simple steps can lead to a warm, inviting and even motivating space. Here are tips for creating a productive homework space for your kids.
Pick the right space. Find an area of your home that is conducive to studying. It should be quiet and away from high-traffic areas, but also in a spot where they can be monitored. It doesn’t require a lot of space, but enough room for a desk, chair, and a few essentials.
Clear the clutter. Make room for the basics, but definitely get rid of everything else! Clutter and items that aren’t needed will only serve as distractions that steer your kids off track. If it’s clean and organized, it will only lead to getting homework done.
Think about organization. Along with stocking some simple supplies, a great homework space is organized with obvious areas where things belong. Try a hook for backpacks and bins for various materials. An organized space won’t encourage backpack dumping!
Keep it well lit. A space near a window and natural light is ideal, especially for reading. Any quality light will keep your student and alert and not stress their eyes.
Make it comfy. A comfortable student will be encouraged to get things done. Consider a small reading chair with pillows and blankets for reading. At a desk, take posture into account with a pillow and an ergonomically-correct chair.
Motivational ideas. The right accessories can help keep kids motivated and on track. Consider items like a vision board, a chalkboard with a schedule, motivational quotes, some of their artwork, or special homework. Perhaps a container with some small snacks could even help.