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Together We’re Thankful

A great way to being a sense of unity into the workplace is around the time of Thanksgiving. Everyone is grateful for something!

Something that we like to do here at Porter’s Office Products is to make a gratitude wall. We cut out lots of yellow leaves and leave them in the breakroom for people to write on at their own time. During lunch hours, after work, before work, stopping in for a drink of water, we let people write on these leaves. We were pleasantly surprised that the leaves started filling up the bulletin board and the surrounding wall within the hour! It is continuing to fill up more and more every day.

This has been a great chance for us to reflect on the aspects of our life that we may take for granted. We are especially grateful that we are able to serve those in our community and interact with customers like you each and every day. We wish that you all have a great Thanksgiving and that you will be blessed. You have certainly blessed our lives! Happy Thanksgiving from all of us here at Porter’s Office Products.

 

Space to Yourself; Creating Getaways Within the Office

Modern office design has seen an evolution toward open, collaborative spaces.  Cubicle walls are lowering, collaborative lounge and conferencing areas are being added, and even private offices often have full glass walls to give a feeling of openness.  There has been extensive research on how accessible collaborative office design can promote productivity in the workplace, and it can be easy to get caught up in the idea of having “no walls” to prevent separation and disengagement at work.  However, while the open office has its benefits, it is still important to remember that there must be a balance between areas where team meetings and group sessions take place, and spaces where individuals can hunker down and focus or take a break.  Thus, the importance of the ‘enclave’.

“These short-term retreat spaces give workers the change of pace—and of posture—that often stimulates new ideas and leads to better conversations down the road.  And for mobile workers, a private oasis is exactly what’s needed as they grab a few minutes to prep for the next meeting.  Meike Toepfer Taylor, a former Coalesse design researcher, calls these enclaves “ready refuge places where we can hide if needed.” 

“There’s mounting evidence that the lack of privacy is causing people to feel overexposed in today’s workplaces,”said Donna Flynn, who leads Steelcase’s WorkSpace Futures research group. Along with giving people easy access to their colleagues, companies who practice collaboration also need to give workers “the time and places to focus and recharge,” she said.”

An enclave can be anything from a small nook with a table and chair to a completely separated room with lounge furniture.  Coalesse’s Massaud and Hosu lounge chairs are perfect for such a location, allowing relaxation or individual work to take place.

Others, like the Lagunitas collection from Coalesse and the Brody Lounge from Steelcase both create enclaves in and of themselves, no walls required!

Whatever it looks like, an in-between space like this may be just where you need to go to relax, take a phone call, or work on projects that require intense focus.  Everyone needs a place to get away from their desk and recharge during a hectic day.

School Supplies

 

It’s that time of year again. The pencils are getting sharpened, the notebooks are being bought in every color imaginable, and school is beginning once again. It can be hard to stay on top of everything, and Porter’s Office Products is here to help. When it comes to being prepared for the school year with all the necessary supplies there are many ways to accomplish that.

 

Make a List of Everything You Need

Making a list will ensure that you purchase what is needed and not simply what you might want. Make it as detailed as you desire; creating a plan will help make the process smoother and more enjoyable for all. Paired with this is the importance of trying to budget and plan accordingly. At http://shop.portersop.com/Browse.aspx we can help you find exactly what you are looking for, and even create a personalized favorites list for everything your child needs.

 

Involve the Kids

Involving the kids helps them to see what is needed for school and how it will directly help them. This is a great way to get the returning students excited for school and ready to learn. Help them pick out supplies in their favorite color, determine if you could help donate to a back-to-school fund for other children in need, or assist in packing their backpack the night before.

 

Personalize

Take involving the kids one step further- help them personalize their items. Whether it is stickers, labels, or their own hand-drawn designs, help them make the items their own.

 

Designate a School Supplies Area

Find a space that works for you and keep all school supplies in one centralized location. This helps relieve the stress of not knowing where to find items and makes everything organized and easy to access.

 

Finding a one-stop store for your school needs can be a definite priority at this time of year. Our store showcases all the needed school supplies for a worry-free school year. From pens and highlighters to notebooks and planners, we have it all. What we do not house in our immediate store can be ordered through our catalog and shipped overnight for next day delivery.

 

We held a design Competition!

Recently Porter’s Products held a design competition. The competition consisted of teams that came up with and created designs for our buoy chairs. The design wraps that were developed showed a great deal of creativity and really showed off the chairs. It was a good thing we had two design experts to judge the contest because their was a lot of talented people involved. Here’s a few of the photos from the event.

 

The talented judges we had for the two events were:

Kathy Goff
Interior Designer
Inside Story Interior Design

Jane Warnock, IDI
Principal Interior Designer
Caldera Design LLC

And they had some really good submissions to the competition.

 

Porter’s is the exclusive Steelcase dealer in the area and we held this event to showcase a new chair that Steelcase has recently come up with. The design competition was a huge hit and allowed some local people to show off a little and we think they turned out just great.

bouycontest_131001_3

 

 

How to Select the Perfect Lamp

Picking a Lamp

Two Important Things to Consider

Size

The size you need in a lamp has a lot to do with the space you are working with. Most office lamps will be for the desk area. The most productive and helpful way to use a lamp on a desk area is to concentrate light at the work you are focusing on. This could be a document, a book, or any number of other things. Ideally the over head light will be strong enough to move around and use things in your environment but not strong enough to focus on things like reading. So the larger the on hand working material the larger the lamp light area will need to be.

 

Bulb

Your lamp can have three different special kinds of bulbs: fluorescent, incandescent and halogen. Fluorescent is too harsh for concentrated work like reading so that’s not your best choice. Incandescent is inexpensive but doesn’t have the focus effect that you need. The bulb that offers you the best results is the halogen. It concentrates and focuses you in on your work without being too harsh and it’s bulbs lasts a long time.

Which Mouse is Best

Picking a Mouse

There are two main concerns when choosing a mouse for your computer. The way in which you hold the mouse and whether a wireless mouse or corded is best for you.

Getting a Grip

There are three types of mouse gripping types. The palm grip, the claw grip, and the fingertip grip. Some one that uses the palm grip will have their whole hand on the mouse, all the way back into their palm. For this kind of user you will want a mouse with a longer sloping back that fits comfortably into your hand. The second type is called the claw grip because your fingers are more raised up or arched then the palm grip and because of that raised action in your fingers you will need a shorter mouse with a more raised back. This allows for the natural form for your hand to happen without fighting against the mouse. The last kind of grip is all about the fingertips. You will find a shorter mouse more to your liking because the control you exert over your mouse comes from your finger tips and thumb. You won’t need a long back on it.

Cord or Cordless

Once you have found the right shape mouse you have to decide if you want to go wireless or if your needs are best met with a cord attaching you to the computer. If you are always working at the same desk and have plenty of space then there are benefits to keeping the cord. You won’t have to deal with the hassle of keeping batteries in the mouse. Also there can be some lag in the responsiveness of a wireless mouse compared to its corded counterparts.  This doesn’t mean that a wireless mouse wouldn’t be a wise choice for the desktop computer at work. There are just some down sides that have to be accepted before saying it’s the right choice for you. If you are mainly using a laptop on the go and want a mouse for that device then the wireless makes more sense because it has no cord to tangle and snag on things.

The main take away is that when choosing a mouse you have to find the right fit for your style and preferences. It’s about knowing your own habits.

Gardening is coming fast

Here, the latest tips and tricks from Paul James, host of Gardening by the Yard:

1. To remove the salt deposits that form on clay pots, combine equal parts white vinegar, rubbing alcohol and water in a spray bottle. Apply the mixture to the pot and scrub with a plastic brush. Let the pot dry before you plant anything in it.

2. To prevent accumulating dirt under your fingernails while you work in the garden, draw your fingernails across a bar of soap and you’ll effectively seal the undersides of your nails so dirt can’t collect beneath them. Then, after you’ve finished in the garden, use a nailbrush to remove the soap and your nails will be sparkling clean.

3. To prevent the line on your string trimmer from jamming or breaking, treat with a spray vegetable oil before installing it in the trimmer.

4. Turn a long-handled tool into a measuring stick! Lay a long-handled garden tool on the ground, and next to it place a tape measure. Using a permanent marker, write inch and foot marks on the handle. When you need to space plants a certain distance apart (from just an inch to several feet) you’ll already have a measuring device in your hand.

5. To have garden twine handy when you need it, just stick a ball of twine in a small clay pot, pull the end of the twine through the drainage hole, and set the pot upside down in the garden. Do that, and you’ll never go looking for twine again.

6. Little clay pots make great cloches for protecting young plants from sudden, overnight frosts and freezes.

7. To turn a clay pot into a hose guide, just stab a roughly one-foot length of steel reinforcing bar into the ground at the corner of a bed and slip two clay pots over it: one facing down, the other facing up. The guides will prevent damage to your plants as you drag the hose along the bed.

Flowerpots of Different Colors

8. To create perfectly natural markers, write the names of plants (using a permanent marker) on the flat faces of stones of various sizes and place them at or near the base of your plants.

9. Got aphids? You can control them with a strong blast of water from the hose or with insecticidal soap. But here’s another suggestion, one that’s a lot more fun; get some tape! Wrap a wide strip of tape around your hand, sticky side out, and pat the leaves of plants infested with aphids. Concentrate on the undersides of leaves, because that’s where the little buggers like to hide.

10. The next time you boil or steam vegetables, don’t pour the water down the drain, use it to water potted patio plants, and you’ll be amazed at how the plants respond to the “vegetable soup.”

11. Use leftover tea and coffee grounds to acidify the soil of acid-loving plants such as azaleas, rhododendrons, camellias, gardenias and even blueberries. A light sprinkling of about one-quarter of an inch applied once a month will keep the pH of the soil on the acidic side.

12. Use chamomile tea to control damping-off fungus, which often attacks young seedlings quite suddenly. Just add a spot of tea to the soil around the base of seedlings once a week or use it as a foliar spray.

13. If you need an instant table for tea service, look no farther than your collection of clay pots and saucers. Just flip a good-sized pot over, and top it off with a large saucer. And when you’ve had your share of tea, fill the saucer with water, and your “table” is now a birdbath.

14. The quickest way in the world to dry herbs: just lay a sheet of newspaper on the seat of your car, arrange the herbs in a single layer, then roll up the windows and close the doors. Your herbs will be quickly dried to perfection. What’s more, your car will smell great.

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Welcome Knobe’s Office Supply to our Porter’s team!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 1, 2012

PORTER’S OFFICE PRODUCTS, IDAHO OFFICE PRODUCTS DEALER, ANNOUNCES MERGER WITH KNOBE’S OFFICE SUPPLY IN JACKSON, WY

REXBURG, IDAHO—Porter’s Office Products, one of Idaho’s leading independent office products dealers since 1915, and Knobe’s Office Supply in Jackson, WY, have merged.

Knobe’s owner Chet Knobe will join the Porter’s organization and serve as account executive for its new Jackson customers.

The acquisition continues Porter’s aggressive expansion program which earlier this year saw the dealership acquire the commercial office products business of M&H Office Supply in Blackfoot, ID.

“We’re delighted to welcome Chet Knobe and Knobe’s customers to the Porter’s family and look forward to sharing with them our unique brand of Blue Cow service,” commented President Mark Porter.

Blue cows, he explained, are rare and unique, just like the outstanding customer service provided by the dealership the Porter family has operated for close to 90 years.

“We’re locally owned and proud of it,” Porter added, “but we also have the resources to meet and beat anything our big box competition might offer when it comes to pricing or breadth of product offering.”

In additionto providing free next-day delivery on over 37,000 office supply items, Porter’s also carries a broad offering of office furniture solutions, janitorial and cleaning supplies, promotional products and customizable items, as well as money-saving managed print programs.

ABOUT PORTER’S OFFICE PRODUCTS: A family-owned and operated business since 1915, with the fourth generation of the Porter family now at the helm, Porter’s Office Products is Idaho’s fastest growing office products dealer, with locations in Rexburg, Pocatello, Blackfoot, Logan, UT, and now Jackson, WY. Porter’s Office Products is the home of Blue Cow Service. Blue cows are rare, never before seen and unique, just like Porter’s. Even if a customer orders something outrageous like a blue cow, we will sit down and
think outside of the box in order to meet their needs. For more information,
visit www.portersop.com.

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WIN A FREE IPAD2!

Complete our online Scavenger Hunt to be entered to win an iPad! You will have to visit our website, Facebook, Blog, and Pinterest page and do a little searching to complete the entry form to be entered to win.

We will draw one winner on June 29th at 4pm. Only one entry per person, and all fields must be completed and requirements met for a valid entry. Good Luck!  Click here for full entry form and complete details!

1. Find all 5 of the RED COWS located throughout our website on various pages just like this one… and no this does NOT count as one location, but keep looking!

2. Follow Blue Cow on Pinterest

3. List one pin Blue Cow has pinned on Pinterest in May or June

4. Like us on Facebook!

5. Leave a comment on our Facebook page, a wall post, or picture.

6. Find one blog post we posted in May or June 

Now that you’ve made the rounds and found all the information you need, fill out the form/checklist  by clicking here!

Make sure to include your contact info! Winner will be drawn June 29th at 4pm! Click here for full entry form and complete details!

 

Top 10 Ways to Cook a Turkey

It’s finally (almost) here! Get started on your Thanksgiving preparations by starting with the most important part… the turkey! Check out the top ten most popular ways to get the bird done this year.

Roasting

 From www.butterball.com

“The most traditional way of cooking turkey is roasting it. This is also the easiest way to cook turkey as long as you have a roasting pan and oven. Start by preheating the oven to 325 degrees, then pat your turkey dry with paper towels. Place the turkey in the pan and lather it lightly with vegetable oil and add your seasonings. Place a meat thermometer deep in the thigh of the turkey. When the temperature reaches 180 degrees, it is done. Make sure to let the turkey sit for 15 minutes after you remove it from the oven so all the juices will not be lost.

Marinating

 This technique will result in a juicy turkey with intense flavor. By adding different seasoning and letting your turkey rest in it for seven to 10 hours, you will end up with a moist, flavorful turkey. After you marinate your turkey, there are a couple of different options for cooking it. You can place it into an oven bag, roast it, grill it or smoke it. It all depends on what type of crispiness and tenderness you want for your turkey.

Brining

From www.allrecipes.com

Brining is a technique foreign to most. It creates a juicy turkey because the technique calls for a lot of salt, which in turn makes the meat more absorbent. First you have to find a roasting pan your turkey can fit in and can fit in your refrigerator. Turkey brine calls for two cups of salt for every two gallons of water. When you make the brine, make sure the water is hot. You can also add other flavors and seasonings. The turkey has to sit in the brine for at least four hours, but no longer than a day. After the turkey has marinated in the brine, pour off the brine and wash the turkey with cool water. Let it dry, then get the remaining moisture out by patting dry with paper towels. Place the turkey in a roasting pan in the oven at 325 to 350 degrees until the turkey reaches 175 degrees.

Oven bag

 From www.cooks.com

The most convenient way to cook turkey is by using a turkey bag. Start off by seasoning your turkey with a dry rub or injecting with a marinade. Stuff the turkey with aromatic vegetables, and herbs like thyme and rosemary to add more flavor. Make six half-inch slits at the top, then tie the bag with a nylon tie. All you need to do is put the turkey in the bag and place in a roasting pan. Place a meat thermometer in the turkey through one of the slits on the bag. The turkey will be done once it reaches 180 degrees. Cooking time is approximately two to three hours, but varies depending on the turkey’s weight.

Smoking

 From www.fabulousfoods.com

 Smoking a turkey doesn’t require seasonings because the smoke flavors the meat. The cooking equipment is significant to this technique. You will need a smoker. There are two different types: charcoal or water. When using a smoker, make sure to choose a good wood because that will be the primary flavor. Another suggestion to intensify the flavor is to soak the wood chips in wine prior to smoking the meat. This is one of the longer processes for cooking turkey; the suggested cooking time is 20 to 30 minutes for every pound.

Steaming

From www.recipetips.com

Steaming the turkey results in softer and more tender meat because of the over-moisturizing of the turkey. The common misconception of steaming turkey is people think the turkey is placed directly into the water, but it is suspended above the water. For steaming, you will need a pot of boiling water and a collapsible basket to place the turkey in. First you will need to chop the turkey into small portions (turkey breasts are best for this cooking technique). To increase the flavor content, marinate the turkey the day before you cook it. When you are ready to steam, place the turkey in the basket and collapse the basket into the pot. When the turkey becomes opaque, you know it is done. The cooking process takes approximately 10 minutes.

Deep frying

From www.fabulousfoods.com

 This technique originated in the south and makes a moist and crisp turkey. To deep fry a turkey, a couple of irregular items are needed. For the frying process you will need a 40 to 60 quart pot with a basket to hold the turkey, a propane gas tank, a burner, oil and a thermometers (one for the turkey and one for the oil). Corn, peanut or canola oils are best because they all have high smoke points. Before putting the turkey in the fryer inject it with some flavor and rub it down with your favorite spices. To fry the turkey, let the oil reach a temperature of approximately 325 degrees. Once that is hit, drop the turkey in. The time of frying ranges for the weight of the turkey. Three minutes per pound is suggested. When you think the turkey is done, it should have reached a temperature of approximately 170 to 180 degrees.

Grilling

From www.recipetips.com

Grilling turkey results in a crisp skin and a grilled taste. If you are into barbecue, this is the best technique for you. All you will need is a grill, some type of oil, and seasonings. Once the turkey is prepared, rub it down with olive oil or vegetable oil and your seasonings. Coat the rack of the grill with olive or vegetable oil so the turkey will not stick to the rack. Make sure to have the breasts facing up when you put the turkey on the rack. Cooking time varies for propane and charcoal grills, but it will take about two to three hours. Make sure to keep a meat thermometer on hand. Once the bird reaches 180 degrees, it is done. Rotisserie From www.recipetips.com Rotisserie turkey is very similar to grilled turkey. The cooking techniques vary by one piece of equipment, which is a spit. The spit is a piece of equipment with a rod that goes through the turkey and makes revolutions around the grill. As the turkey spins above the flame, the heat is evenly distributed throughout the meat. This results in a very tender meat throughout the entire turkey.

Microwaving

From www.chef.com

 This is a valid way to cook a turkey. If done properly you may make the best turkey you have ever tried. Most microwave units come with instructions on how to cook a bird because different settings have to be used to cook the bird fully. Preparing the bird is the same as any of the other techniques: remove giblets, clean turkey, pat dry with paper towels, lather lightly with oil, rub seasonings and stuff with aromatics or stuffing. After that is done, all you need to do is find a pan large enough to fit a turkey. Cooking varies depending on wattage. Generally, nine to 10 minutes per pound according to www.ehow.com.”

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