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iving n g Smart L ivi ivin ng Weekly Save Smarter • Live Better • Rockford Region/Freeport 95¢ • April 30, 2014

Right in Our Region

Time to Plant!

By Janine Pumilia, executive editor

A

fter such a brutal winter, we’re eager to dig dirt and plant! The general wisdom is to wait until Mother’s Day to plant annuals. Most perennials, trees, shrubs and cold crop vegetables, like cabbage and cauliflower, can go into the ground now. Smart Living Weekly urges shoppers to buy plants from locally owned greenhouses and nurseries, rather than big-box stores. More money stays in our local economy that way; the carbon footprint is smaller; and locally nurtured plants are often healthier than those shipped thousands of miles by truck. Also, staff at local greenhouses actually know something about plants and offer invaluable advice. And, they’re far more likely to invest in the long-term health of your plants, something that’s not always visible to the naked eye. Continued on p. 20

• Get All the SAVINGS You Deserve from Local Businesses

Healthy Snacking • Mother’s Day Gift Ideas • Prevent Warm Weather Injuries Why Your Furnace Needs Spring Cleaning • Vacation Planning Tricks • Early Season Mowing Tips

Smart Living Weekly

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In This Issue

Right in Our Region: .....................Cover & p. 20 Time to Plant! Your Home ........................................................11 Tips for Spring Mowing Inspiration & Worship .....................................12 It is What it Is Your Kitchen .................................................... 15 Healthy Snacks Your Style ....................................................17 Personalize it for Mother’s Day Your Health ...................................................... 25 Avoid Warm Weather Injuries Your Fun ........................................................... 27 Dining Locally ................................................. 29 Tips ................................................................... 31 Easy DIY Home Projects Your Money ...................................................... 33 Prevent Furnace Repairs by Cleaning Now

Smart L iving Weekly ™

Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Bill Hughes Executive Editor Janine Pumilia

Managing Editor/Web Editor Chris Linden Associate Editor/Special Projects Editor Karla Nagy

www.classiccinemas.com

Senior Staff Writer/Promotions Coordinator Paul Anthony Arco

115 South Chicago Ave. • Freeport • 815.233.0413

Graphics Director Blake Nunes

LINDO THEATRE

Graphic Designer Samantha Ryan Contributing Writer Jim Killam and Peggy Werner General Sales Manager Brent Hughes Sales Manager Brad Hughes

Making Movies More Affordable!

Account Executives Steve Blachford, Brian Hughes Administration & Circulation Manager Lisa Hughes Website www.NWQSmartLiving.com

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Published by Hughes Media Corp. 728 N. Prospect St., Rockford, IL, 61107 (815) 316-2300, Fax: (815) 316-2301 lhughes@northwestquarterly.com

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Smart Living Weekly. Copyright 2014 by Hughes Media Corp., 728 N. Prospect St., Rockford, IL, 61107. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part of any text, photograph or illustration without written permission from the publisher is strictly prohibited.

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April 30


Dirt Dreams

Chapters of my life are marked by the gardens I’ve known and grown. And to be honest, I’ve known far more than I’ve grown – my dirt time is lacking, of late, though not for lack of interest. My fantasy is to putter in the garden, in retirement, as my own grandparents did, for the pure pleasure of it, growing foods with real flavor and flowers with real scent. In our family, Grandpa tended all things tasty; Grandma cultivated sheer beauty. No wonder Mom can coax a homebound geranium to bloom in January. Given this background, you can imagine what a chore it is for me to write articles about plants. What drudgery to stroll a greenhouse in April and learn about the new colors, textures, habits and forms of new cultivars, as well as to see familiar old plant friends we can’t live, or at least garden, without. (Do I really get paid for this?) I often wonder what Grandma, who died in the 1980s, would think of the new mildewresistant Supertunias, or prolific “million bells,” or gigantic Dragon Wing begonias. In her day, coral bells were grown for their spindly pink flowers, not their exciting foliage colors like “Buttered Rum” or “Lava Lamp” (though we did have real lava lamps back then) and sweet potato vines existed in one color and for one purpose – to produce sweet potatoes. I think Grandma would have liked the easy-care new roses like Knock-Outs, but mourned the loss of true scent, as I do. Much of life is about trade-offs, in any era. Whether you’re a green thumb or not, you’ll find something to excite you in the plant world this spring. And this is one of those times when buying from a locally owned greenhouse, instead of big-box stores, really pays big dividends, if you want healthy plants that thrive all season long. So buy local and happy planting!!

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Y H  G

Early-Season Mowing Sets Tone for Season By Jim Killam

T

hat grass you thought you’d never see again is flnally growing – quickly. Once you’ve resurrected your dormant mower, it’ll be time to tackle the lawn. Tim Kinney of Lincoln Rent-All & Lawn Equipment Sales, Inc., 3110 Auburn St., Rockford, offers advice on early-season mowing. How long, O lawn? Kinney suggests letting the grass grow a little higher than normal before cutting it for the flrst time – just to let it start thick and healthy. Walk the lawn flrst and pick up any objects that might have been left out last fall. Then mow, but not too short. “A lot of it is personal preference, but 2 ½ to 3 inches is a good range,” he says. “If you take it too short – that’s called scalping it – that’s harmful. That will allow the soil to dry out and what you have

then is a lot of weed growth. So if you do let your grass mature and get to a good length, that will keep the weeds at bay almost by itself.”

Bag it? Rake it? Mulch it?

Again, it’s personal preference. “For the flrst mowing of the year, I would suggest bagging it, just to get all the old dead stuff up off the ground,” Kinney says. “And then go into mulching after that if that’s the route you like to go. “A lot of people who put time and effort into fertilizing like to mulch, because they want to keep all the nutrients on the grass. People who have pets and kids like to bag, to keep the grass clippings up so they’re not getting dragged into the house.” Change it up. Don’t mow in exactly the same pattern every time. Eventually

the wheel tracks won’t go away, and the grass even begins to grow on an angle. Change directions every other time, Kinney advises. ❚

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I  W

Beautiful Feet S

ometimes very sincere Christians put great pressure on themselves to “grow” God’s church. After all, in Acts 1:8, Jesus’ last words on earth are “… and you will be

witnesses to me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

It’s God’s will that we share our faith. But no matter how committed we are to preaching Christ, it’s important to remember that it’s God who adds people to His church. The Christian’s responsibility is to listen to God’s voice and tell others about Christ – not to rely on human strength alone. It’s a partnership. How much effort is wasted when we try to do, by our own strength, something God has never asked for? Let’s look again at those last words of Jesus in Acts 1:8, this time in the full context of the verse. Jesus tells us to be witnesses, but he precedes those words with, “But you shall receive power after the holy spirit is come upon you: and you shall be witnesses unto me …”

God is at work inside us through holy spirit. Throughout Acts, we see that as believers act in partnership with God, miracles happen and people are added to His family. “And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” (Acts 2:47).

An eye-opening exercise is to read the entire book of Acts and make note of everyplace that God adds to his church, such as in Acts 2:41: “So those who received the

word were baptized and there were added that day about 3,000 souls.”

Doesn’t that take the pressure off? “How then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Romans 10:14-15) ❚ - Janine Pumilia

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We’ re here , fo r yo u.

Area’s best in patient safety FHN Memorial Hospital was recently recognized for a second year for our patient safety record by the world’s largest independent, non-profit product-

We at FHN are committed to a safe patient experience, and are proud that

and service-testing organization. In their second U.S. study, in which safety scores were calculated for nearly 2,000 hospitals, only 6% nationwide – and only four hospitals in Illinois – earned a score

FHN Memorial Hospital, which scored higher than any other hospital close to the communities it serves.*

as high or higher as

It is our goal to offer our communities the best possible healthcare services we can provide, and recognition such as this confirms our commitment to your confidence in our processes and capabilities. Whether you need surgery, cancer treatment or other specialty care close to home, a hand in welcoming a new baby into your life, help in handling a chronic health condition, or emergency care,

choose the best in the area for patient safety: FHN.

For more information, visit www.fhn.org or call 1-877-6000-FHN (1-877-600-0346).

* Within a 50-mile radius of Freeport

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Be Healthy, Start Snacking on Good Foods By Jinger Christal

T

he word “snacking” can have a bad reputation, especially when we think of overdoing it with our favorite sweets or salty foods that lead to weight gain. But actually taking the time for snacks is an important part of a healthy diet. Having healthy snacks can regulate blood sugar, keep our energy up during the day, and helps avoid overeating at meals, primarily dinner. Keeping our blood sugar stable throughout the day is very important for everyone because it helps in the prevention of diabetes and for those who have diabetes it stops further complications. Pairing a carbohydrate serving (15 grams) that has flber with a protein is a great way to keep blood sugars from spiking to high. Some good snack ideas are:

• 10 whole grain crackers with peanut butter • 1 small hand fruit with handful of almonds • 2 tablespoons of dried fruit with handful of nuts/seeds • Fresh veggies with hummus • 1 slice of whole grain bread with peanut butter or tuna with light mayo • ½ banana with ½ cup of low fat cottage cheese • 17 grapes with 1 piece of low fat string cheese • ¾ cup of berries with a hardboiled egg • Greek yogurt with flaxseed or nuts

Try eating every 3-5 hours to keep your metabolism and energy going throughout the day to avoid the afternoon crash and the urge to reach for the more sugary and salty snacks. Dinner tends to be the meal in which many of us are most likely to overeat, so try eating a salad before the main meal or snacking on veggies while you are cooking. It takes about 20 minutes from the time you start eating for your stomach to tell your brain you are full, so slow down and enjoy your food. ❚ Jinger Christal holds a B.S. in Nutrition and Dietetics from Northern Illinois University.

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Personalize Jewelry for a Great Mother’s Day M

other’s Day is Sunday, May 11. To help avoid the predictable shopping frenzy on Saturday, May 10, Debra Fontana has a few ideas. Fontana, Proprietor of Frank Jewelers, 19 E. Stephenson St., Freeport, says personalized items are almost always a hit with mothers and grandmothers. For instance, the popular Pandora charms and bracelets provide hundreds of options, in price ranges from $20 to more than $1,000. And the company always releases a special edition bead for Mother’s Day. “The nice thing is you can bring a little 2-year-old in who can pick out something personal for his mom, and it’s still affordable,” Fontana says. Plus, a woman’s collection of charms re‡ects her individual tastes and values. The bracelets become conversation pieces. “When somebody goes and buys it

for their mom, then that mom buys it for her mom … or the daughter buys it for the grandma,” Fontana says. “So it covers a wide age range. There are so many options and price points.” The O.W.L. – Ones We Love – collection offers even more personalization with necklaces that hold engraved charms. “We have sold many combinations of this collection, during the Christmas and Valentine seasons,” Fontana says, “and I am expecting its popularity to continue to increase, as it is such a personalized gift. Fontana’s store does a wide variety of engraving on pieces for moms: kids’ names, messages from a family or husband, symbols that may hold personal meaning … even a person’s actual handwriting that can be scanned and turned into an engraving. “Mothers have been loving this,”

Fontana says. “That makes it so special, because it is so personal and meaningful.” Other jewelry items that have gained popularity as a more-expensive Mother’s Day gift are the Rhythm of Love diamond pendants. The diamond is set so it never stops moving and sparkling. “You can see it from across the room,” Fontana says. ❚

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Spring Planting Continued from Cover

For example, family-owned Gensler Gardens adds 9-month slow-release fertilizer to every hanging basket it sells, rather than over-stimulating a plant to look great only for a few weeks of peak shelf life, as mass market retailers do. So if you’re looking for Mother’s Day hanging baskets, it’s smart living to buy good ones that won’t look frowsy by July 4th. “I want a blooming plant to have that beautiful vibrant blossom color and a slower-paced, nice green growth all season long, rather than an explosion of green growth that wears out the plant too soon,” says Scott Gensler. “Sure, it adds to our overhead expense that way, but we view it as an investment. We want our customers to enjoy their plants all season long and come back to us each year.” Gensler Gardens is at 102 Orth Road, Loves Park, and 8631 11th St., Davis Junction. Each carries the same plants.

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If you’re a little intimidated by all the options in a greenhouse, don’t worry. Most, including Gensler Gardens, offer pre-filled containers you can simply plunk into your own decorative pots at home. The plants are compatible in color, size and sun/water requirements. If you prefer to choose your own plants individually, here are a few annuals that Gensler recommends. Annual plants are one-season wonders that die with autumn frost but add tons of color and texture to any garden or container. Sunbini: “This plant blooms all season long,” says Gensler. “It loves the heat and keeps a nice, compact shape that’s ideal for containers.” Sunbini is a member of the zinnia family, with small, bright yellow, daisy-shaped flowers.

April 30

Sweetunia: The breeders of these sturdy petunias just keep spinning out remarkable new colors like Johnny Flame, a 2014 hot pink/burgundy bicolor petunia. You’ll see it paired with a lighter blue cousin and lime green foliage, in city hanging baskets this year. Diamond Frost euphorbia: It looks delicate and frilly, with its cloud of tiny white ‡owers, “but this plant is easy to grow and stands up to the worst summer heat,” says Gensler. “I love it.” White ‡owers are a welcome addition to any container because they help bright colors to “pop.” The proliflc euphorbia family boasts more than 2,000 members. Calibrachoa: One of the great stars to emerge from 1990s breeding programs, colorful calibrachoa, also called “million


R  O R bells,” are often described as “tiny petunias on steroids.” Many have good trailing habits and the selection of colors grows each year. Gensler likes the 2014 introductions Pomegranate Punch (above) and Spicy. Last year’s big hit was yellow and white Lemon Slice. “Don’t be afraid to trim these to stimulate growth and branching out,” he says. “After trimming, give them some water soluble fertilizer to support their proliflc blooming.” He likes the “Jacks” brand of fertilizers because that company “puts their money into their product, not their marketing.” Coleus: “Every year they come up with another four or flve colors and textures of coleus,” says Gensler, who often builds a container around a taller-growing variety of coleus. From velvety dark

purples to vibrant rusts, lavenders, lime greens and reds, no-fuss coleus are rapid growers that enjoy a mix of sun and shade. If they get too big, just pinch off a few inches. Succulents: “This is a very underutilized category of plant,” says Gensler. Although we associate cactus and other succulents with arid environments, they thrive wonderfully here, too, in warm weather, and provide interesting shapes and structures. “They couldn’t be easier to maintain and can go 10 days or more without needing water. How many plants can you say that about?” Pony Tail Fern: A relative of the soft and airy asparagus fern, this tall, cylindrical-shaped fern provides a nice change of pace in containers, for those gardeners who like a little novelty each year. Its slightly prehistoric, whimsical look is a good conversation starter, too. Pink Dazzle: Gensler puts this 2014 newcomer in the “wait and see” category, but it showed beautifully at a grower’s

convention he attended in Ohio this year. “It’s a member of the amaranth family and has brilliant hot pink blooms that come and go all season long,” he says. The blooms last up to three weeks outdoors and up to two months indoors as cut flowers. Oxalis Charmed Wine: Known as “the shamrock plant,” this variety with purple foliage and dainty white flowers provides a nice contrast to green plants in containers and is a well-behaved houseplant, too, come winter. A member of the wood-sorrel family, its 900 members boast various colors in foliage. “It gets along fine in shady areas and provides a good contrast color,” says Gensler. One of the great joys of springtime is making that first trip to a local greenhouse. Enjoy! ❚

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Y H

Don’t Get Hurt Playing Summer Sports By Medical Pain Management Services ing an evening stroll. ummer brings out the warm-weather Vary your activities: Endurance athlete in all of us. After long hours sports, such as running or cycling, emsitting at a desk, it’s tempting to pack phasize one set of muscle groups while evenings and weekends with as many excluding others. Follow a workout outdoor activities as possible. routine that strengthens the muscles A sudden burst of physical activity skipped over by your favorite sport. increases opportunity for injuries. RunWarm up to avoid injury: Musning, biking, golfing and swimming are cles need time to get loose. Stretchcertainly fun, but they can push our boding, touching your toes, doing jumpies harder than they’re accustomed to. ing jacks and running in place increase That’s how enjoyment turns to injuries. your heart rate, respiratory rate and blood Most athletic injuries are due to poor flow to muscles. preparation, overuse of joints or muscles, Wear properly fitting gear: Using and disregard for early warning signs. the wrong or improperly fitted equipment Weekend warriors’ battle scars — to the — like helmets, sport-specific footwear, ankles, wrists, elbows, knees and back — and wrist and shin guards — is a major are preventable. cause of injuries. Make fitness a regular part of your Know when to rest: Many injuries lifestyle: Lessen your chances of hurting occur from overworked muscles. Freyourself on the golf course or ball field by quent breaks give muscles a chance to rewalking the dog a little longer during the lax and release unnecessary tension. week, playing tag with your kids or tak-

S

Be aware of your body: Even when you’re prepared for physical activity, injuries can happen. If you feel persistent pain, have it evaluated. Remember, we like to think we’re starting this season with the same level of fitness that we ended last season. Take things slowly at first. Jumping straight into vigorous activities can be harmful. ❚

Medical Pain Management Services is located at 1235 N. Mulford Road. Learn more at MedicalPain.com.

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Y F

A Midsummer Night’s Dream May 1-3, 8 p.m. William Shakespeare’s most popular comedy portrays the adventures of four young lovers and a group of amateur actors who stumble into an enchanted forest. Beloit College Neese Theatre, 700 College St., Beloit, Wis. Call (608) 363-2755 for tickets. Love, Death & The Prom Thru May 4. These mini-plays are poignant and funny, and concern the lives of high school students. Pec Playhouse Theatre, 314 Main St., Pecatonica, Ill. (815) 239-1210. Check website for times, pecplayhouse.org. Aaron Shust Morning Rises Concert & Expo April 30, 7 p.m.; Christian music artist Aaron Shust is featured with MIKESCHAIR, Jonny Diaz and Lauren Daigle for a night of music and ministry. Pontiac Expo Center, 2809 N. Pontiac Dr., Janesville, Wis. byfaithevents.org. Celtic Women: The Emerald Tour May 1, 7 p.m. Celebrate Ireland’s spellbinding heritage through traditional Irish anthems, pop standards and more. $39 to $113. Coronado Performing Arts Center, 314 N. Main St., Rockford, coronadopac.org. First Fridays, Dowtown Rockford May 2, 5 p.m.-midnight. Various art galleries, music venues and shops welcome you each first Friday, monthly. downtownrockford.org. 11th Annual Unforgettable Art May 3, 6 p.m., featuring 50 artists who’ll tranform blank canvases into works of art. At Lou Bachrodt Auto Mall, Cherryvale North Blvd. Benefits Alzheimer’s Association Greater Illinois Chapter. Learn more at alz.org/illinois. Community Dog Walk at Klehm Arboretum May 4, 1 p.m. Bring your leashed and well-behaved canine friends to explore 155 acres of gardens and grounds. Donations to support Kibble Korner, Rockford’s pet food pantry. As families struggle with job loss, your help can spare families and pets the heartache of separation. Learn more at klehm.org. Aquin Flea Market May 4, 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Indoor flea market, antiques, crafts, coins, more. Aquin High School, 1419 S. Galena, Freeport. (815) 601-2250. Mary J. Harris Trio May 3, 8-10 p.m. at Main Street Bistro Jazz Night, 109 S. Galena Avenue, Freeport. (815) 232-2322.

The world famous Moscow Festival Ballet presents Sleeping Beauty May 4 at the Coronado.

Shelter Care Ministries Spring Luncheon May 8, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Prarie St. Brewhouse, 200 Prairie St., Rkfd. shelter-care.org. Moscow Festival Ballet: Sleeping Beauty May 4, Sunday at 3 p.m., Tchaikovsky’s timeless masterpiece. Coronado Performing Arts Center, 314 N. Main St., Rockford. Learn more at coronadopac.org. West Side Story at Coronado May 8, Thursday at 7:30 p.m. This great love story changed theater more than 50 years ago, and its Bernstein and Sondheim score is considered to be one of Broadway’s finest. Learn more at coronadopac.org. 2nd City Chorus May 10, 7 p.m. “Still Crazy After All These Years” performed at Memorial Hall, 211 N. Main St. Also performing are quartets Second Opinion and Up North Four. Tickets: (815) 9881003 or (815) 713-1643. Cruisin for a Cause May 10, 4-8 p.m. at Union Dairy, 126 E. Douglas St., Freeport. Food, fun and classic cars judged in ‘30s & ‘40s; ‘50s & ‘60s; 70s & 80s; 90s & newer. Judging closes at 7 p.m., awards at 8 p.m. Music from 3D Sound Co. Food-A-Rama May 21, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Shop a wide selection of home-made breads, strudels, coffee cakes, muffins and more at this 52nd annual fundraiser for Temple Beth-El, 1203 Comanche Dr., Rockford. Lunch served 10 a.m. to 1:30 for $9. Eat-in, carry-out and delivery. (815) 398-5020. Gardens Showcase June 18, noon to 8 p.m. Self-guided tour of eight gardens in Rockford area. Maps available at garden centers and online beginning June 9. Free. coucilofrockfordgardeners.org. ❚

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April 30

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April 30


WDL

Smart Dining Weekly Our Top Picks for Terrific Local Restaurants D Dinner, L Lunch, Br Brunch, Bk Breakfast. Cost: $ under $12.50; $$ $12.50 - $25; $$$ $25+ 2nd Cousin’s Bar & Grill  Casual/American. Full bar. 6246 E. Riverside Blvd., Loves Park, Ill., (815) 637-2660. LD M-F 11am-2am, Sat-Sun 8am to late. $. 9 East Coffee  Specialty coffees, pastries, breakfast & lunch items. 9 E. Stephenson St., Freeport, Ill. (815) 233-7300. $ abreo  Upscale-Casual. Tapas menu. 515 E. State St., Rockford, (815) 968-9463. D M-Th 5-10pm, F-Sat to midnight. Bar open late. $-$$. Amici Italian Grill  Upscale-Casual/Italian. Fresh, authentic Italian cuisine. 5506 Clayton Circle, Roscoe, Ill., (815) 623-7171. LD Sun-Th 11am-9pm, F-Sat 11am10-pm. $-$$. Bravo Pizza  Italian/American favorites, full bar. 376 Prairie Hill Road, South Beloit, Ill. (815) 624-7900. LD M-Th 11am-10pm, Fri. & Sat. 11am-11pm, Sun. 11am10pm. $. Butterfly Club  Upscale-Casual/Fine Dining. 5246 E. Co. Road X, Beloit, Wis. (608) 362-8577. LD T-Th 5-9:30pm, F 4:30-10pm, Sat 5-10pm, Sun noon-8pm. Live bands. $$. Cafe Fromage  Artisan sandwiches, soups, cheese plates, baked goods from The Cheese People. 431 E. Grand Ave., Beloit, Wis. (608) 207-3094. $ Cannova’s Pizzeria & Fine Italian Cuisine  Casual. Pizza, pasta, steak, seafood. 1101 W. Empire St., Freeport, (815) 233-0032. D T-Th, Sun 5-9pm; F-Sat 10pm. $-$$. Ciao Bella Ristorante  Upscale-Casual/ItalianAmerican. Extensive wine list; daily specials. 6500 E. Riverside Blvd., Loves Park, Ill., (815) 654-9900. LD M-F 11am-9pm, Sat 5-9pm. $$. Costa’s Italian Ristorante  Upscale-Casual. 133 Blackhawk Dr., Byron, Ill., (815) 234-4707. Open daily. D Sun-Th 4-10pm, F-Sat to midnight. $-$$. Dos Reales  Casual/Authentic Mexican. 5855 E. State St., Rockford. LD M-Th 11am-10pm, F-Sat to 10:30pm, Sun to 10pm $-. Giordano’s  Casual/Italian. Authentic stuffed pizza, salads, sandwiches, entrees, desserts. Pick-up/delivery available. 333 Executive Pkwy., Rockford, (815) 398-5700. LD Sun-Th 9am-11p.m, F-Sat to midnight. $.

JMK Nippon Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar  Upscale-Casual/Japanese. 2551 N. Perryville, Rockford, (815) 877-0505. L T-F 11:30am-2pm, Sat to 2:30pm; D M-Th 5-9:30pm, F-Sat to 10:30pm, Sun 4:30-9:30pm. $$. Joey C’ Cucina & Cocktails  Upscale-Casual/Italian. 2583 N. Mulford, Rockford, (815) 639-1200. LD M-T 4-10pm, W-Th 11am-9pm, F to 10pm, Sat-Sun 4-10pm $. Leombruni’s Italian Village Pizza & Restaurant  Casual. 110 W. 2nd St., Byron, Ill., (815) 234-2696. D T-Th 5-9pm, F-Sat to 11pm, Sun to 10pm. $. Lucha Cantina  Casual/Mexican. Fresh ingredients, no MSG, steaks, mac ‘n cheese, burgers. 1641 N. Alpine, Rockford, (815) 977-4319. LD M-Th 11am-midnight, F-Sat 2am. $. Main Street Bistro  Fine dining, full bar, live music Thurs. and Sat. nights. 109 S. Galena Ave., Freeport, Ill. (815) 232-2322. Mon.-Sat. 2p.m. to close. $$ Maciano’s Pizza & Pastaria  Casual. Italian favorites, beer & wine. 6746 Broadcast Pkwy., Loves Park, Ill., (815) 963-7869. LD Sun-Th 11am-midnight, F-Sat to 11pm. $$. Merrill & Houston’s Steak Joint  Fine Dining. Ironworks Hotel, 500 Pleasant St., Beloit, Wis. (608) 3130700 Sun.-Th 4:30-9p.m, Fri-Sat. to 10pm. $$. Mulligans  Casual/American Pub. 2212 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 963-7869. LD M-Sat 11am-2am, Sun to midnight, F-Sat to 2am. $ Murphy’s Pub & Grill  Casual/Irish-American. 510 S. Perryville Rd., Rockford, (815) 986-0950. LD M-Sat 11am2am, Sun to midnight. $-$$. Olympic Tavern  Casual/American. 2327 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 962-8758. LD M-Sat 11am-2am. $-$$. Slanted Shanty Vintage Pub  Upscale-Casual/American. Vintage/Burlesque-themed pub. 6731 Broadcast Pkwy., Loves Park, Ill., (815) 708-7879. D M-Th 3:30pm-11pm, F 11am-midnight, Sat 3:30pm-midnight. $$. This Is It Eatery  Ribs, burgers, pasta, salads. Tues.-Thurs. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. (815) 616-5449. 16 N. Chicago Ave., Freeport, Ill. $ Vito’s Ristorante  Casual/Italian. Authentic fare from family recipes. Sauces, soups, mama’s meatballs, desserts fresh daily. 1620 N. Bell School Rd., Rockford, (815) 312-5080. LD T-Th 11am-10pm, F-Sat to 11pm. $$. ❚

Visit NorthwestQuarterly.com/Dining to See Our Expanded Dining Guide Online

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April 30

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GLASS SERVICE, INC.

815-397-7211 WWW.ABILITYGLASS.COM 905 22ND STREET, ROCKFORD

Mirrors Beveled • Framed • Frameless Shower Enclosures Heavy Glass • Framed • Frameless Insulated Glass Tinted • Low E. • Argon Aluminum Storefronts Entrances

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Smart Living Weekly

April 30


T  I

A Few Easy DIY Home Projects

F

rom simple fixes to bigger projects, sometimes all you need is the right tool at the right time to get the job done. • Fix that door that won’t stay open. Try tightening the screws on the top door hinge with a power screwdriver like the new 360 Quick-Select from SKIL. • Put together a ready-to-assemble (RTA) piece of furniture: RTA furniture looks like an easy project in the store, but once you get it home it can quickly get the best of you. Using a power screwdriver can help eliminate frustration and get the project finished fast. • Give old furniture a new life. If the office desk etc.is looking shabby, give it an easy makeover. Use sandpaper to take off old varnish and help new paint adhere. Wipe off dust with a clean dry cloth, then apply 1-2 coats of fresh paint with a brush, roller or spray can. Let the paint dry thoroughly then seal with a coat of Polyurethane for a protective finish. • Update ceiling fixtures. Most of us don’t realize how ceiling fixtures can quickly change the look of a room. Always turn the power to the circuit off before changing a fixture. Remove the old fixture by unscrewing the cover plate and disconnecting the electrical wires. Reconnect the new fixture according to the directions included in the box. • Day-to-day repairs. Keeping a power screwdriver in the kitchen drawer will let you make those little repairs as they happen. So when that drawer knob or towel bar comes loose again, because the kids are forever pulling on them too hard, grab it out of the draw and do your fix on the spot. Lithium ion batteries stay charged up to 18 months, so the power screwdriver will be charged and ready when you need it. For more information about power tools, visitSKILTools.com/360 for information on the new 360 Quick-Select, and take advantage of the Where to Buy feature. ❚

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April 30

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April 30


Y M

Save Money by Cleaning Your Furnace Now By Peggy Werner xtreme wintertime temperatures force furnaces to work overtime, putting extra wear and tear on parts. That’s why it’s a good idea to give your heating and cooling system an annual maintenance check-up and cleaning,

E

preferably every spring or fall when temperatures are not too hot or cold. Mark Buckner, owner and president of Rockford Heating and Air Conditioning, knows flrsthand the importance of preventative maintenance. “People don’t realize how important it is to keep a furnace clean,” he says. “It can cost a lot of money to flx components that have worn out because a furnace wasn’t properly maintained.” Many warranties require regular maintenance of a heating system. The annual cleaning and check-up also ensures it will work at the most efflcient levels. A properly working furnace will reduce your heating costs and you’ll prevent a small problem from becoming an emergency. The technician will check fllters, the ignition system, burners, the amp draw on the motor, and clean the air condition-

er condenser, making sure no parts are wearing out. “People who ignore regular maintenance of their furnace are the ones who call us when something breaks, and it always happens in the most extreme conditions because that’s when the furnace is working its hardest. Furnaces never break down at convenient times. So, if you want to avoid paying someone overtime and/or holiday pay to make repairs, think ahead,” he says. On the average, a furnace cleaning costs about $115. Emergency calls can easily double that price. Most furnace systems are designed to handle temperatures as low as six below zero. “When we had the 15 to 20 below zero temperatures, with a minus 40 wind chill, my furnace ran for three days straight and I expect a lot of furnaces were running night and day,”too. ❚

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April 30


Register Now for Healthy Woman 2014

Keynote Speakers Laura Koch, N.P. Nurse Practitioner

Monday, May 5 at Giovanni’s FREE Health Screenings & Expo 4:30-6 p.m. Dinner 6 p.m.

Elisha Robinson, M.D. Breast Surgeon

Melissa Stenstrom, M.D. Dermatologist

Join us for Healthy Woman 2014 with three outstanding providers

from Rockford Health System. Laura Koch, women’s health N.P., discusses perimenopause and menopause; managing symptoms and maintaining good health; and causes and treatment of low libido. Elisha Robinson, M.D., speaks on cancer risk factors and prevention strategies, including eating well; exercising regularly; and getting regular mammograms. Melissa Stenstrom, M.D., addresses skin health, including recognizing the signs of skin cancer; minimizing your risks; and managing sun damage. Tickets are $20. To register, call (815) 971-1999.

Register by April 18 and you’ll be entered into an early-bird drawing for an iPad Mini.


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Issue 1

Smart Living Weekly - April 30, 2014  

Featured this week: Time to Plant! You and your family will live smarter and better lives, every week of the year, with this magazine curren...

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