For over 30 years, 3 Day Blinds' technicians have sift through samples and unreel measuring tapes during in-home consultations, custom-fitting abodes with blinds, shutters, and shades. They handcraft and cut treatments such as faux wood blinds, vertical blinds, and flexcell honeycomb blinds that reduce light and are energy efficient. As they tailor-make each order, the staffers dress windows of all shapes and sizes, from an arch above a doorway to a misshapen wormhole in the attic. All of 3 Day Blinds’ products come with a limited lifetime warranty. After clients have made a selection, the team shows up just two days later to install the new window dressings or let customers do it themselves.
Since 1983, families have spent their holidays around the television, watching A Christmas Story and joining in the triumphs and failures of 9-year-old Ralphie as he struggles to secure a Red Ryder BB gun from Santa's bag. Although the cult-classic film showed Ralphie living in Indiana, the house in which the movie took place rests in Cleveland?and is now a museum. When MSNBC interviewed lifelong fan and A Christmas Story House & Museum owner Brian Jones, they profiled the story of how he found the house on eBay and jumped at the chance to own it. Today, he?s turned it into a year-round place of pilgrimage for fans and the site of an occasionally-held convention for Ralphies.
Jones?s restoration has returned rooms to exactly how they were in the film, letting guests gaze at the tinsel-strewn tree with its star falling off and explore the bathroom where Ralphie?s mouth was washed out with soap?a time-tested method for cavity prevention. Visitors can even attempt to hide like little Randy in the cabinet under the sink. After seeing the backyard that still houses the original shed, where Ralphie defended his family against Black Bart, fans head across the street to the A Christmas Story House & Museum. Here, original props such as the toys from the Higbee?s department-store window, Randy?s snowsuit, and Miss Shields?s classroom chalkboard join other memorabilia and hundreds of behind-the-scenes photos. Before leaving, guests drop into the gift shop to pick up a leg lamp just like the one Ralphie's old man cherished so dearly.
At Neusole Glassworks, gurus of all stripes and skill levels come together to fuse, blow, and mold glass both for independent projects and classes that explore the art form. The nonprofit facility sets the stage for inspired creation with flame-working, hotshop, and fusing studios that help the crew and their pupils transform raw materials into polished paperweights, unique pendants, and colorful new windshields. Upstairs, Neusole Glassworks invites browsers to tote pieces home from the gift shop or let their eyes feast on the myriad colors and textures at Atmosphere @ Neusole—a gallery for emerging artists and the facility’s students. In addition to welcoming anyone into its facility, Neusole Glassworks dispatches a mobile glassblowing studio to enliven street fairs and churn out slippers for palace dance parties.
Dan Hesch woke up on his 5th birthday covered in welts from more than 100 yellow-jacket stings. The day before, he had explored the woods near his house and stumbled upon some ornery wasps. What happened then doesn’t need to be spelled out. Dan looks back on the incident, and the innate curiosity that spawned it, with fondness. "It seems I was destined to pursue a career in the pest industry," he said.
Today, Dan boasts nearly 40 years of pest-control experience, which includes learning his trade in one of the country’s most insect-friendly climes, Phoenix. Dan and his team of exterminators now target creatures trespassing into homes around Toledo while being mindful of clients' health and using application techniques that minimize clients’ chemical exposure and maximize insects' pleas for mercy. He also vows to beat any competitor’s price, charging at least 10% less than any estimate homeowners can show him.
The owner of Simpatico, which means congenial in Italian, didn’t think the name would stick when it opened in 2009, but it soon came to represent Simpatico’s green mission. By showcasing furniture made with sustainable hardwoods, organic fabrics, and recycled materials, the staff aims to help their customers create healthier living spaces. The eco-friendly offerings range from coffee tables made of reclaimed elm to light fixtures that emit recycled light waves. Simpatico also has a design studio where clients can get professional guidance with furniture selection, as well as custom furniture and renovation services.
The air outside is hot and sticky. Sweat drips down your neck and you rush into the house. The second you walk through the door, a wall of cool air hits you. Air conditioning can be an instant relief in the summer. Rick's Affordable Heating & Cooling installs and repairs HVAC systems to help regulate the temperature inside homes, creating indoor oases from overwhelming weather. Aware that weather can be a burden in both summer and winter, the team's HVAC systems also keep living spaces toasty warm when the snow begins to pile up and take form as aggressive snowman armies.
For unusual problems like flash floods and lightning strikes, the team can assess issues and offer creative solutions. Their menu of products and services includes items as broad ranging as thermostats for people with impaired vision to carbon monoxide detectors to keep homes safe and comfortable.