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Dog Treats

3 Natural Dog Treats for Your Furry Friend

Dog TreatsThere are few things nicer than preparing a home-cooked meal for your loved ones and friends—except for maybe whipping up a few healthy treats for your furry friends! Treats are a great way to train and reward your dog but many of the pre-made options you can find on the market today are full of fillers and sugars. Luckily, making healthy dog treats is simple and easy enough that even novice cooks can do it. Check out a few of our favorite healthy dog treat recipes below.

3 Natural and Healthy Dog Treat Recipes

1. Fast & Easy Peanut Butter Bites

Peanut butter isn’t just a favorite human treat, dogs love it too! Peanut butter is high in protein and contains lots of healthy fats, vitamin E, vitamin B and niacin. For this simple recipe, you’ll only need 4 ingredients that you most likely already have in your apartment. Mix together flour, eggs and peanut butter to make a tasty and natural treat.

2. Tasty Chicken Treats

Chicken is a staple protein in many dog food recipes. Not only do dogs love the way it tastes but it’s super healthy too. If you’ve been having trouble finding a good protein that your dog will stick with, chicken may be the answer. For this treat recipe, you’ll need chicken, cooked rice, flour, 1 egg and parsley.

3. Sweet Potato Fries

If you’ve ever shared a French fry or two with your dog, you know that most flip over the idea of a salty potato treat. But drive-thru food isn’t the most healthy option for your pets. This easy sweet potato recipe will provide your dog with a low-fat treat option that has plenty of essential vitamins and will help to ease their digestive health. Simply grab a few sweet potatoes, healthy coconut oil and a few healthy spices, and you’re good to go!

Treat Your Pup to a Healthy Snack Today

Reward your dog for all the love and affection they give you with a few new tasty and natural treat recipes. Visit our office to learn more about our apartment community and be sure to take a look at the available floor plans at our pet-friendly apartments in Houston today.

Iced Tea

Ways to Make Iced Tea at Home

Iced TeaThere are plenty of ways for you to order a huge box of personal iced teas to your home, so you can enjoy one any time you want as the weather starts to heat up. But wouldn’t you rather be able to make your own iced tea so you can skip the preservatives and go straight for the good stuff? Here are ways for you to make delicious iced tea in our Houston apartments.

From Hot to Cold

This is the easiest way to make iced tea because it’s really just a matter of making regular hot tea and then cooling it off. You’ll need three to four bags of black tea to make a single pitcher. Because you’re probably going to use some ice to make it as cold as it should be, you’ll need to compensate for all the extra water by making particularly strong tea.

Fruity Iced Tea

To make fruity iced tea, you’ll need to start with black tea just as you would for regular iced tea, but you’ll also be adding sugar syrup, lemon juice, and mint. The type of fruit you choose is entirely up to you, but we recommend strawberry, blueberry, or passion fruit.

Classic Sweet Tea

Classic sweet tea consists of natural tea, white sugar, and baking soda. The process is fairly simple to follow and involves boiling two cups of water before adding in six tea bags and 3/4 cup of granulated white sugar. Place a pinch of baking soda into a heat-proof pitcher that can hold at least 8 cups and then add in six cups of cool water to complete.

Green Tea

Black tea is usually the most popular choice for iced tea, but there are plenty of reasons to try other types of tea. We recommend green tea because it’s fresh and light. And those who would prefer not to drink caffeine past 4:00 p.m. can enjoy this choice without having to worry about staying up all night.

Hot Houston days call for cold classic drinks. If you’re looking for a place where you can enjoy your summer, call Villas at Hermann Park to schedule a personal tour. Between our gourmet kitchens and outdoor amenities, we have it all for every season of the year! We look forward to speaking with you!

Colorful Cocktail

Spring Party Themes

Colorful CocktailWarmer temperatures, sunshine, and flowers are beckoning us outdoors, and now that spring has arrived, the joy that comes with the season makes it a perfect time to throw a party. Spring brings with it plenty of fun occasions and holidays to celebrate, and with the perfect spring theme, you can make the season come to life for your special event.

4 Great Party Themes for a Spring Party

Whether you’re planning a huge birthday bash, a baby shower, or simply an elegant party to celebrate the season with friends, here are some great spring party themes that will make your party something special.

Beautiful Butterfly Theme

Spring is the time of year when butterflies emerge from the cocoon, and it’s a whimsical party theme that kids or adults will enjoy. Start with butterfly shaped party invites, add lots of spring foods, have a couple butterfly-themed crafts, and use butterfly décor everywhere to set a cheerful, light mood.

Springtime Picnic Theme

Warmer weather means it’s the perfect time of year for a picnic, and a picnic theme can be fun for a birthday party or even a big BBQ bash. Go with favorite picnic foods, add picnic baskets, whip up some lemonade, and be sure to have plenty of red and white tablecloths and other picnic décor for the perfect soirée.

Baseball Themed

If you’re looking for something more masculine, a baseball-themed party is the perfect option. Baseball season kicks off in the spring, and it can be your inspiration for an exciting party. Serve foods inspired by a concession stand, such as hotdogs, nachos, and Cracker Jacks. Have plenty of baseball-themed décor, and you can even head to a local park to get together a nice game of baseball for a fun party activity.

Spring Mixed Drink Theme

Is your party adults-only? If so, a spring mixed drink party is sure to be a huge hit. Come up with some spring-themed mixed drinks that use the colors and flavors of spring. Whip them up yourself or hire a bartender for the evening. Add finger foods and you have a fab party for the adults.

Whether you head to a local park or have your party in your apartment, any of these themes are sure to be a great hit. Do you have guests looking for Houston apartments? Have them contact our office to find out which floor plans we have available today.

Villas at Hermann Park Bedroom

The Best Tips for Living With a Roommate

Villas at Hermann Park BedroomHaving a roommate in Houston, Texas, can prove to be convenient if tricky at times. The key is finding the right balance between setting the ground rules and respecting individual space. Here, find the best tips you’ll get anywhere to ensure your roommate experience turns out to be one of the better decisions you (and your roommate) have made in a while.

1. Make Sure You are Compatible

Don’t sign a lease with anyone before knowing something about that person. That could mean one year or more living with someone with whom you are not compatible. And that could mean misery. First, identify what’s important to you, and second, find out if it’s important to them as well.

Some questions to ask:

  • Do you stay up late or sleep in?
  • Do you play music loud or watch TV all day?
  • Do you clean up right away or do you wait until you feel it is necessary?
  • Do you like to socialize a lot and do you intend having many people over?

So, if you like to sleep early and don’t want to be interrupted by loud music or TV, then you need to make sure your roommate to be isn’t going to be up all night making noise. Even if you know the person, you may not know these kinds of details.

2. Have Ground Rules

You decided who will be your roommate, now, before anything else, establish ground rules. It may sound like an odd thing to do, but it’s necessary. These ground rules can be aligned in part with the questions you asked prior to lease-signing. You both want to have all your concerns out on the table and express what your expectations and roles are. This process will set the foundations for a mutually satisfying living situation. You should clarify cleaning, food, TV time, rent, among any other issue that comes to mind.

3. Have Boundaries

You have ground rules, but these rules are for practical day-to-day living. You want to make sure you are always aware of your roommate’s personal space and establish clear boundaries. For instance, you and your roommate may start getting along well and doing things together, like friends, not simply roommates. This development of a friendship does not mean you are allowed to barge into their room with some great news. You still have to knock — even if you are friends, you still need to knock and wait for the OK to come in. Have boundaries that establish the invisible boundaries. People need space to be alone just as much as they need space to socialize so keep that in mind and be respectful.

4. Find the Right Living Space to Share

You want a space that works for both of you. Living in a community that offers amenities and a great location close to shops, restaurants, and recreation may be just that. An apartment that allows you to enjoy the comfort and convenience of having a roommate and the space to enjoy your time alone also matters. At Villas at Hermann Park, you can find different floor plans that accommodate your preferences with the added benefit of awesome amenities and a great location.

If you are considering living with a roommate, remember these tips. These tips –- along with living in our community –- will go a long way toward your quality of life. Contact our apartments in Houston today to view our available floor plans.

Floral Wreath

4 Creative Spring Wreath Designs

Floral WreathThe arrival of spring is cause for celebration, but your living space might be hopelessly stuck in winter. Freshen up your surroundings with a wreath that looks just as beautiful as the budding flowers outside. While gorgeous wreaths are available for purchase, there’s nothing like a DIY project to brighten up your Houston apartment. Give one of the following creative designs a try:

4 Spring Wreaths to Brighten Up Your Apartment

  • Chalkboard Floral Wreath. If you have an important message for your roommate, you can leave it on the chalkboard center of this wreath. To create the outside of the wreath, simply use a hot glue gun to attach silk flowers to a premade frame. A central chalkboard can easily be attached, or the wreath can overlay a chalkboard already affixed to the wall.
  • Umbrella Wreath. Remove that old umbrella from your Goodwill pile and prepare to give it new life. This easy DIY project provides a prescient reminder of the saying “April showers bring May flowers.” Simply stand your umbrella upright, tie a ribbon around the middle, and fill the top with silk flowers.
  • Butterfly Wreath. Flowers are beautiful, but if you’re looking for a different take on the spring wreath concept, this design should do the trick. While you can use a variety of wreath frames to complete this project, it looks best with a grapevine wreath. Spray paint the wreath white before attaching several feather butterflies. Many feather butterflies feature wire, which allows for glue-free attachment.
  • Kite Wreath. Nothing says spring like flying a kite on a windy day. This project requires a wreath frame, fabric to cover the wreath, felt for the kite, and string. You’ll also need a hot-glue gun to attach the fabric and your handmade kite to your selected frame. Two different contrasting colors of felt (forming four total sections) will make the kite pop. Add bows for a more whimsical effect.

If you’re feeling ambitious, create a separate wreath for every room in your apartment. It’s the perfect activity to keep you entertained on one of the spring season’s days.

The Villas at Hermann Park feature spacious and beautiful apartments that are eagerly awaiting your personal touch. Contact us today learn more.

Houston NASA

Fun Spots to Learn About Houston’s Diverse History

Houston NASAThe Villas at Hermann Park are located in a Houston cultural hub near the Texas Medical District. While many people living in our Houston apartments have long roots in the community, others may want to learn about our area’s amazing history.

Houston Historic Adventures

Acclaimed Architecture

The Houston Metropolitan Research Center now occupies the historic Julia Ideson Building in the city center. Movie buffs can enjoy cinematic adventures at the 1939 Landmark River Oaks Theatre, musical performances at the former Heights Theateror performing arts at the 1894 Grand Opera House.

Air and Space

The art deco 1940 Air Terminal Museum at William P. Hobby Airport includes exhibit galleries for all ages that celebrate the city’s aviation heritage. Space Center Houston, the area’s Smithsonian Affiliate, recounts the history of NASA and the important role that the space industry has played in the region’s development.

Artful Gardens

The same Hogg family that donated the land for Memorial Park also gave us Bayou Bend, home of the Museum of Fine Arts and impressive gardens. Opened in 1871, Glenwood Cemetery offers a tranquil place to walk among ornate headstones commemorating Houston’s pioneers. Of course, we cannot overlook our own Hermann Park Conservancy that preserves one of the most beautiful green spaces in the Lone Star State. Museums near our apartments make this a true cultural venue. When downtown, enjoy beautiful Sam Houston Park.

Cultural Connections

While visiting Freedmen’s Town in the historic Fourth Ward, be sure to stop at the African American Library at Gregory School that opened in 2009 and has impressive historical collections. The Hindu Worship Society Temple in the city and the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in nearby Stafford offer a unique opportunity to experience Hindu culture. A substantial Vietnamese community in the Bellaire district, the largest east of the Rockies, offers restaurants and pagodas reminiscent of Southeast Asia.

The sites are just the beginning. A short drive over to Galveston, Lake Jackson, and other nearby communities offers many other cultural heritage locations to visit.

Our recently renovated apartments in Houston, Texas have a variety of amenities for our residents. To join us, please schedule a visit by contacting us at (833) 632-6930.

Cat Being Held

5 Reasons Cats are Awesome

Cat Being HeldIf you’ve ever seen a newborn kitten or checked out a silly cat video online, it is easy to see that cats are super cute. Cats make for great apartment living pets and are ideal companions for everyone from families to singles and seniors. Need some more reasons to fall in love with kitties? Check out our top reasons that cats are so great!

Top 5 Reasons Cats are Awesome

1. They’re Clean

Cats love a clean home and will do their part to make sure your apartment looks great by making sure their coat is always shiny and gleaming. If you do your part to keep their litter box clean and change their litter as needed, it’s easy to enjoy a comfortable and tidy apartment with a cat.

2. They Love to Play

Cats need lots of playtime to keep them happy and healthy. If you’re ever in a bad mood, simply take a few minutes to play with your cat. They’ll appreciate the exercise and attention and you’ll love all of their silly moves and funny faces.

3. They Purr

One of the best ways that cats can show their affection or let you know that they’re happy and excited is by purring. Whether they’re snuggled up on the couch or eating a tasty treat, purring is usually a good sign that they are happy and loving life.

4. They Have the Cutest Faces

With big eyes, a sweet little nose and long whiskers, cats have a unique face shape that humans naturally respond to. Cats are able to communicate quite a bit with their facial expressions and by dilating their pupils, so be sure to pay close attention to what they’re trying to tell you during your cuddle sessions.

5. They Have Personality

Cats are very different from other family pets in the sense that they maintain their own space, personality and individual quirks. While they are happy to get lots of love and attention from their owners, they also need plenty of space as well.

Find the Purrfect Apartment for Your Cat

Want to learn more about life in our pet-friendly community? Check out our newly renovated Houston apartments online today or give us a call to schedule a tour.

Recycling Bins

Recycling Tips and Tricks

Recycling BinsThat old adage of “reduce, reuse, and recycle” may sound great in theory, but it’s a lot harder to do in practice. It certainly requires more effort than just tossing something in the garbage. This type of convenience is an understandable allure at the end of the day when you can’t even remember what you ate for breakfast let alone which plastics are appropriate for recycling. To make it a little easier to be nicer to the planet, follow one (or all) of these tips to get it right.

Fixing, Buying, and Learning

One of the easiest ways to recycle is to fix what you already happen to have. Repairing something not only gives you a sense of accomplishment, it saves you money! You may also want to start buying recycled things whenever possible. Not only does this support the recycling industry, it also gives materials an expanded life-span to save our landfills from overflow. And if you’re feeling really ambitious, learn more about what’s acceptable to recycle in Houston. Every area has their own specifications, so try not to assume before you pitch something into one bin or the other.

Take It to the Limit

The next steps are a little more time-consuming, but they’re worth it. Taking your gently used items to a charity store is a good way to give your old stuff a new home with only a minor amount of effort. (Plus, you get a tax discount!) But you may also want to consider finding more people who would benefit from your trash. For example, there are probably plenty of artists who work with found objects in order to create their masterpieces. Just think of your old stuff ending up in a museum for millions to view! You should also find out where you can recycle your electronics responsibly, so you’re not contributing to the acidic pollution of the Earth’s soil and water.

Becoming a greener person is a process, so start small and work your way up. If you’re looking for Houston apartments, consider making the move to Villas at Hermann Park. Give us a call to find out more about our amenities and available floor plans.

Coffee Cake

Two Terrific Coffee Cake Recipes

Coffee CakeFor whatever reason, it seems like bagels and other breakfast eats have taken over from wonderful coffee cakes. Perhaps it’s time to revive the coffee cake tradition. We hope our Villas at Hermann Park community members in Houston, Texas, enjoy these recipe suggestions.

Blueberry-Infused Coffee Cakes

Blueberries are rich in antioxidants. Folding them into a tasty coffee cake will allow you to at least claim you’re embracing this coffee cake for health reasons. But, in reality, people favor blueberries because they are delicious!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 stick of butter (room temp)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 extra-large egg
  • 1 extra-large egg white
  • 1 1/3 cups of buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 cups of blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • Non-stick cooking spray

How to Make

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, beat vanilla, eggs, granulated sugar, buttermilk, sugars and gradually include the flour mix from the other bowl. Spray a 9-inch baking pan and spoon a thin layer of the mix evenly across the bottom. Add 1 cup of blueberries, repeat with a second layer and cup of blueberries and a topping of mix. Place the remaining ½-cup of blueberries on top and sprinkle with brown sugar. Place in the oven for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick test comes out clean. Serve warm with your favorite beverage.

Pecan-Topped Coffee Cake Muffins

This conflation of the standard muffin and coffee cake is simple to prepare and enjoys a manageable presentation. Most of all, it goes well with hot morning coffee or lattes.

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks of butter (room temp)
  • 2 1/4 cups of granulated sugar
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 dozen paper muffin baking cups
  • 1 cup of finely chopped pecans
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon

How to Prepare

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, beat the butter until soft, then gradually beat in 2 cups of sugar, eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Remove electric mixer and stir in flour, baking soda and baking powder. Fill cups to 2/3. In a separate bowl, combine nuts, 1/4 cup of sugar and cinnamon. Spoon on top of the 2/3-filled cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick can be inserted and come out clean.

We hope our community members enjoy these coffee cake recipe suggestions. If you or a friend would like more information about our Houston apartments, call us today.

Couch With Pillows

4 DIY Decor Touches for Apartment Residents

Couch With PillowsWho doesn’t enjoy returning home after a long day at work? When people feel safe and relaxed, they are more likely to contribute to the positive atmosphere found in our apartment community. Adding personal touches to your apartment home creates a space you will want to show-off to friends.

Look Up

Use the space above doors for extra shelving. Place seasonal items up out of the way without burying them in the back of your closet. Perhaps you have family heirlooms you would like to display without using valuable bookshelf space. This is an ideal space for houseplants if the shelf will receive adequate sunlight.

Opt for Multi-Purpose Furniture Pieces

A nice storage bench in the entryway can serve many purposes. It offers a place to sit as you take off shoes and set down grocery bags. Store shoes, umbrellas and outdoor gadgets, so they are easy to access when you are on the go. Beds that act as an extra closet by adding storage options also help keep clutter to a minimum. By raising a bed and adding shelves or rolling bins, you free up much-needed space elsewhere. Don’t forget about ottomans. They offer storage and additional seating for guests.

Add Pops of Color

Since most apartments limit color choices on the walls, adding color can seem daunting. Don’t be afraid to paint furniture for larger pops of your favorite colors. Chairs, end tables and storage trunks are good candidates for new paint jobs. Pillows and throw blankets make bold statements while making your apartment homier.

Gather Old Picture Frames

Old picture frames find new life as everyday items. If the glass is intact, simply paint the frame and place a solid colored piece of paper behind the glass. Voila! You have a customized dry-erase board. Replace the glass with a thin board to create visually appealing jewelry storage. Use small mug hooks to create space for necklaces, bracelets and even rings.

Your Home Should Reflect You

Our Houston apartments offer a vibrant community atmosphere with inviting indoor and outdoor spaces. Check out Villas at Hermann Park to see which available floor plan is right for you.

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