Repairing Your Asphalt Driveway

Imagine a huge crack running right down the middle of your asphalt driveway. It can potentially ruin the entire look of your driveway and dent your home’s curb appeal. If you ever find yourself facing such a problem, the recommended way out is to repair the cracks and fix any other smaller cracks before they escalate into bigger ones.

To some homeowners, driveway repair is an exercise they can do themselves although getting a professional asphalt driveway contractor is still commendable because they have the skills and the tools to do the job right.

Driveway Sealcoat Rockford

Preparation of the Asphalt Driveway

Before you begin fixing a driveway crack, you have to first prepare the surface where the repairs are to be done. The edges of the crack are cleaned not with the aim of deepening the crack, but rather to ensure the crack is filled in completely.

Professionals use chisels to get rid of any jagged pieces to create a smooth line from one end of the crack all the way to the other. Using a brush, the experts will remove the debris from the crack leaving you with a clean crevice from which to start working. If there are any fine particles remaining, they are forced out using compressed air.

Experts are of the idea that homeowners do regular sealcoating in order to slowdown the need for driveway repair. For the small asphalt cracks, they are filled in using an asphalt-based crack filler.

When filling larger asphalt cracks, crushed gravel is first poured into the crack until it is raised about 2 inches deep. Thereafter, a cold patch asphalt repair compound is poured in and a metal tamper is used to even out the area. The process is repeated until the crack is filled.

Professional Help in Driveway Repairs

The major cause of driveway cracks is water that gets in the driveway material. During the cold season, the freeze and thaw cycle exerts tremendous pressure on the driveway making it to crack. Apart from this, there are other reasons why cracks form such as poor driveway installation, tree roots growing into the driveway, too large loads driving on the asphalt surface, or even impact from dropped objects.

A professional driveway repair and maintenance contractor will help you get your driveway back to its original appeal as well as assist you in unearthing the reasons behind the cracks and preventing them from returning.

What to Look for in a Waste Disposal Company

When you have junk to be hauled and aren’t quite sure of which company to hire, it is important to have all the facts with you before making any step. You can find reliable and reputable Rockford waste removal companies that either handle a certain type of waste or every kind of disposable waste.

It is common to find some companies with just a single guy with a truck, especially startups, as well as those with a fleet of trucks of different sizes ad designs. Your needs will determine which company you should go for and which one to avoid. If you are doing this for the first time and somewhat confused, here are a few pointers to start you off.

Quick Removal Service

One of the yardsticks for a good waste disposal service provider is how fast they handle the waste removal process. The time taken from the moment the company makes contact with you as the customer up until the job gets done is an important window that can help you gauge performance. Good companies usually coordinate waste pick up within a span of 24 to 48 hours following a notification.

The Type of Waste Handled

Look for a company that won’t turn away part of your waste on the premise that they can’t handle it. The problem with partial handling of waste is that it puts you in a tricky position where you may be forced to hire another waste removal service provider to complement the efforts of the first one. In whatever shape, form, or size, your waste should be dealt with and removed from your sight.

Adequate Waste Disposal Resources

It is one thing for a company to label itself as a waste removal service provider and totally another to have the right equipment and tools for the job. Waste removal and disposal is a resource intensive service which means the company you hire should be able to deal with that satisfactorily. For larger jobs, they should provide you with a dumpster for ease of waste categorization and accumulation.

Competitive Pricing

The company should have a pricing format that is simple for you to understand. Go for Rockford, IL waste companies that use volume-based pricing because this is measurable and much clear as opposed to hourly pricing which can be confusing and open ended for you.

You should also think through and ask yourself where this company ultimately disposes your waste. Waste disposal companies need to be responsible in the manner in which they handle and dispose of waste particularly that of a hazardous nature.

Bonding – A Cosmetic Dental Procedure for Polished Teeth

Bonding refers to a cosmetic dental procedure involving the application of a composite resin to help repair a fractured, decayed, discolored, or chipped tooth. Compared to veneers which require a high degree of customization for them to fit properly, bonding is usually a simple procedure done in a single visit. The reason it is called bonding is because the applied material firmly bonds to the tooth.

Why is Bonding Necessary

Rockford DentistBonding is primarily used as a cosmetic dental procedure to improve the appearance of chipped or discolored teeth. Where the spaces between teeth are wider, this operation can also help in closing in the gaps.

The composite resin applied in bonding matches the surrounding teeth which is a plus for those seeking uniformity in the shape and color of their teeth.

Instead of going for amalgam fillings, bonding can be used as an alternative. Also, for a tooth whose root or a portion of it has been exposed by receding gums, bonding can come in handy to protect the exposed portion.

How Bonding Is Done

Unless the bonding process involves filling a decayed tooth, no preparation or anesthesia is required. The Rockford dentist will simply use a shade guide to select the matching composite resin color to that of your tooth.

Thereafter, your tooth will be prepared by etching or abrading its surface so as to roughen it. A conditioning liquid will be lightly coated on your tooth to help the bonding material stick to the tooth surface.

As pointed above, bonding doesn’t require prior customization of the resin. As a matter of fact, the dentist will mold and smooth the resin once applied on your tooth so that it can take the proper, desired shape. To harden the material, laser or ultraviolet light is directed at the applied material.

The hardening process is then followed by a further trimming and shaping of the tooth as well as polishing until it matches the rest of the teeth surface. Normally, the procedure takes roughly 30 minutes to one hour to complete. If you require bonding on more than one tooth, it is advisable you schedule several visits with your dentist in Rockford, IL.

Taking Care of Bonded Teeth

The resin just like the normal teeth surface can be stained by tea, coffee, or cigarette smoke among other substances. In order to avoid or minimize the staining, stay away from foods that can potentially stain your teeth at least during the first 48 hours after the bonding procedure.

You should also regularly brush your teeth and visit your Rockford dentist from time to time for cleaning procedures.

Factors that Determine Handyman Service Pricing

If you have a handyman project that you want done, the first step is to do a search on some of the best handyman service providers in your area. Thereafter, you have to do a cost comparison so that you can get the best handyman who can do a quality job without going over your budget. From research, a majority of homeowners in Illinois pay between $184 and $628 for handymen services.

Whether you want to install bath fans, refinish or reface cabinets, and repair tile and grout, knowing the pricing guide will help you get a deal for your project.



The Size of the Handyman Project

Larger projects generally take a longer time to complete and this has an implication on the cost. Experienced handymen will generally tell you the estimated length of time a job will take before they begin. Some handymen will charge you a flat fee for certain jobs and a graduated fee for others. This is why it is important to discuss the project in detail with your prospective handyman and establish the cost ahead of time.

There are small jobs which take between 1 and 2 hours, medium jobs which take anything from 2 to 4 hours, and large jobs which range from 4 hours to even a few days.

The Handyman Hourly Rates

This is an important factor in handymen pricing guides. On average, a handyman charges between $60 and $65. However, professional handyman services may charge you even $125 an hour. The advantage with professional services is the competence and assurance that the handyman will do a quality job.

The two main sub factors which influence the hourly rate include the experience level of the handyman and the complexity of the job.

Handyman Service Charge Schedule

Most handymen charge by the hour, but you can find some who may charge you a flat rate by the job. Some of the flat rate handyman jobs include ceiling fan or toilet installation, wall TVs mounting, hanging of chandeliers, and other such involved work.

The hourly rates depend on where you live and whether you are working with an independent contractor or one who is part of a larger company.

The beauty with handymen is that they are convenient and exceptionally skilled for small menial jobs. If you have a number of things that you want taken care of, a handyman can help you get the tasks done at an affordable price and within a short time.


I want to thank the good people at One Call Solves it All – a quality handyman in Rockford

What to Do When Your Car Breaks Down

While it is recommended that we plan for emergencies and other unforeseen situations, very few of us actually take the necessary measures. One of the common emergencies that happen to both new and experienced drivers is a car breakdown. This can happen anywhere and at any time without a preamble.

Courtesy: Areas Best Towing in Loves Park, IL
Courtesy: Areas Best Towing in Loves Park, IL

In order to sail through such rough patches, you need to know some of the things you should do immediately the emergency happens. Below is a checklist to guide you in this.

Get Your Car Off the Road

This is the first thing to do during a breakdown. The good news is, vehicles are resilient and even if they breakdown, they don’t usually stop working completely. Therefore, you can push it to the side of the road. If the emergency happens while you are stuck in traffic, do not get out of the car and leave it on the highway. Instead, turn on the hazard lights.

Call for Assistance

Unlike in the past, many drivers today have cellphones and they can quickly call for assistance. Calling a towing company is advisable because these are professionals who do not just tow your car to the garage, but have emergency skills that can help you fix your car. Some of the employees in towing companies are professional mechanics who understand most of the car systems and if the problem is not big, they can get you back on the road.

Let the Other Road Users Know You Have a Problem

In addition to hazard lights, get out of the car and place a couple of road flares about 50 feet from your car. You can also raise the hood just to alert other drivers that you have an emergency and they should be careful when approaching the spot where you are.

Stay with the Car

Instead of abandoning your car to go and look for help, it’s advisable you stay with it. This is because most road service companies including tow truck service providers cannot do anything to a car unless the owner or driver is present.

Don’t Attempt to Repair the Car if You Can’t

Unless you are a DIY expert, attempting to repair or diagnosing the possible problems could even lead to further damage. If you have never changed a tire, don’t start doing so when you face a flat tire emergency. Leave it to a professional to help you sort out the problem.

Even though every car breakdown is unique, the above tips will ensure your safety and that of your car as you await assistance.

Don’t feed the squirrels


Don’t Feed the Squirrels…

Reader Warning: If you love squirrels, if you think they are noble and deserving creatures and not zombie psychos, then content below will offend. Read at your own risk.

I met a zombie squirrel once. She, at least I think she was a she, had crooked yellow teeth and eyes that suggested she would have no problem ripping into your neck. I was eating almonds out of a small container and she came up to me, jumped on my leg and took it. She ran away with it before I could even realize what had happened. I never cussed out at animal until that day.

But that’s not when I turned on squirrels. I turned on squirrels when I was sixteen.

My parent’s backyard was filled with them. They were cute. I wanted a pet. So I became that person we all shake our heads condescendingly at: the one feeding wild animals.

I got a pet squirrel. I named it Tully.  Tully lived outside but I would feed him assorted nuts three times a day. Carrot peels sometimes (I assumed he ate anything), apple cores.

Everything was perfect until we went on vacation for two weeks. When we came back we noticed that the back door looked like it had dozens of long scratches all over it. We thought maybe a hailstorm did it. They are common that time of year.

A day later we started noticing other strange things around the house. Our gutters were poked all over. It looked like some bb gun had gotten to them. We blamed the neighbors kids.

The upstairs bathroom had a small leak, right over the tub. We blamed our old roof and the potential hailstorm.

My father called a roof repair person immediately and had her come investigate (why did you assume the roofing repair guy was an actual guy? So weird we even call it “the roofing repair guy” that’s discrimination, just sayin’. Sure, this was possibly the one roofing woman in history but still…). She couldn’t be there until Saturday. It was Thursday. That’s when Tully started torturing my family. As if he knew that he had a few days to enact his revenge.

On Thursday night we started hearing hollers from the attic. Then footsteps. And more hollers. Then scratches. I was sixteen. Not old enough to fully convince myself ghosts weren’t real and that our house wasn’t built on Native American burial ground. Honestly though, aren’t all houses buried on these holy grounds? But that’s a story for another time.

My parents kept saying maybe a scorpion got in, or a bird. Okay.  So the difference between a scorpion and a bird is huge….just sayin’. Why they didn’t just stick to bird is beyond me. I didn’t sleep all night.

On Friday, Tully knocked on the back door. Yes, knocked. I honestly wish I were kidding. That little fucker knocked on our back door. When I opened it he stood in front of me, bravely demanding food, little paw out, his eyes a bit crossed and his teeth clattering. How I thought this creature cute was beyond me.

And at that moment, with that asshole standing right in front of me, I realized. He destroyed our gutters, our roof, our attic, because I had left him unfed. Squirrels are way smarter than we think. Take this as a warning humanity. If the zombie apocalypse comes, squirrels will be the end of us. It’ll be like Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, only with squirrels.

Rockford Roofing came on Saturday ( and discovered that we needed to replace several pieces of our roof. She said she had never seen anything like it. It seemed that whatever caused the damage concentrated only on two areas: the bathroom area and my bedroom. I’m telling you that squirrel was out to get me.

When I told her my theory, she laughed but decided to check out the attic herself to see if any animal got in through the roof into the attic. She thought it improbable.

Improbable my ass.

We told her to go ahead. She went in our tiny attic and looked astonished when she came back down.  In the attic she found nuts, some odd rotting fruits, and scratches all over the walls. A squirrel’s den.

Tully had taken over our house in protest. Clever little asshole.

Estimated damages to our roof were well over two-thousand dollars.

Lesson to learn here: don’t feed the squirrels.

Bernie Sanders está Más Cerca que Nunca de la Nominación


En este momento,  y sin muchas dudas, la señora Clinton lleva una ventaja sobre Bernie Sanders, mi candidato de preferencia.

La realidad es que ninguno de los dos candidatos demócratas llegará a la convención con la cantidad de delegados suficientes para asegurarse la nominación.

Más allá de que si a Hillary la acusan formalmente de traición por el tema de los emails y el servidor, (aunque ese sería el camino más rápido para Bernie, ya que la gran mayoría de los delegados que se comprometieron a Hillary la abandonarían rápidamente).

El partido demócrata sabe que sin el apoyo de nosotros, los que votamos a Bernie, y en gran cantidad tambien la mayoría de los “INDEPENDIENTES”, Hillary no tiene los suficientes votos necesarios para ganara la elección presidencial en Noviembre.

Pero tenemos que hacerselo saber. La cada vez mas popular hashtag #bernieorbust agrupa a los que apoyamos a Bernie para hacerle saber al Partido Demócrata de que sin nuestro apoyo, Hillary no es el candidato que pueda ganerle al retrógrado Trump o al diabóllico Cruz.

Solo Bernie les gana AMPLIAMENTE a cualquiera de ellos, como lo demuestran TODAS las encuestas.

Saben por qué Hillary gana todas las primarias “cerradas” y Bernie ARRASA en todas las primarias abiertas? Porque en las abiertas permiten votar a los independientes, mientras que en las cerradas solo los que se registraron como demócratas.

En una elección general presidencial, VOTAMOS TODOS.

Es por eso que en la convención demócrata, cuando estos “superdelegados” se den por enterados de que nosotros solo votamos a Bernie, tomarán consciencia de la importancia de cambiar su voto a Bernie Sanders.

No podemos entregarnos. Hemos trabajado demasiado para apoyar a Bernie y debemos hacerlo hasta el final. Y hacerle saber al partido de que sin nuestro voto, el partido no existe.

Sigamos donando aqui:



The Curse of Tradition

Tradition. Food, behaviors… all these things that kinda bring us together as a group, family, ethic origin, country of origin. Also a way to add labels to people.

Good and bad, right?

Here’s the thing: My grandpa was Mexican. My dad was born here, but married a Mexican. So, I would say, I’m Mexican, right? Have I ever been to Mexico? NO. Do I speak Spanish? Not really. Do I have a Mexican name? Hell yeah. Do I consider myself Mexican? Hell no! I’m second generation American! But I guarantee you that if I went to a Trump rally I would be accused of stealing someone’s job or even be looked at as a criminal… But I digress… Traditions.

Last new year, some cousins I didn’t even  know I had came to visit from Arizona. Nice people. Really. Did the turkey thing, 28 different side dishes, tossed the pigskin around after dinner and watch some good American TV. Pretty standard for us all.

rosca1The weird thing happened after dinner: the Galvez’ from Arizona had gotten their hands on some massive doughnut looking thing. I’m not kidding. It was the size of an extra large pizza. With a whole in the middle.

Filled with some weird fruit and stuff, it was… meh. But I was polite and had a second slice.

Unbeknownst to me, and very much to my surprise, that second slice ended up costing me money.

Lemme explain: I bit into the darn thing and seemed to have chomped on something that wasn’t supposed to be there. Hard, non-food-like, freaky. My initial reaction was of being grossed out.

roscaAt that moment, EVERYONE in the visiting family started pointing at me, cheering and laughing. I was like… WTF? I just almost chipped a tooth, people!

Turns out that what I had just bitten into had bought them a taco feast, apparently.

You see, Mexicans have this tradition that they will bake a plastic little figurine of Jesus (yep, you read that right…) into the dough. Its placement, of course is random, and whomever ends up getting the slice that contains such religious figurine, is automatically bound and committed to hosting a huge taco party at some later date for all those present at the time. Not sure which version of the bible that’s in… but we’ll deal with that another time.

I asked if I could make it hamburgers instead, but they said it had to be tacos. WTF? I’m not even a big fan of tacos! But apparently it is bad karma if I screw this up or bail on doing it. So not only do I have to host a bunch of people I don’t know at my house this summer, but I’m gonna have to fork out some cash to pay some dude to come out and make these tacos for them! LOVE TRADITIONS. And, BTW… thanks, Jesus. You’re a pal.