Archadeck of Chicagoland Earns Esteemed 2015 Angie’s List Super Service Award

“It is an honor to receive this award as it represents our true commitment to providing our clients with the best quality, care, and customer service in the industry,” said David Berryhill, president of Archadeck of Chicagoland.

The Angie’s List Super Service Award reflects Archadeck of Chicagoland’s consistently high level of customer service.

Archadeck of Chicagoland has earned the service industry’s coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award, reflecting an exemplary year of service provided to members of the local services marketplace and consumer review site in 2015.

Archadeck of Chicagoland Angies List Super Service Award 2015

With showrooms in Rolling Meadows and Naperville, Archadeck of Chicagoland is a local Design & Build firm that sets itself apart from competitors by considering customer service a top priority. Continue reading “Archadeck of Chicagoland Earns Esteemed 2015 Angie’s List Super Service Award”

Memorial Day: 10 Ways To Show Your Gratitude

Our soldiers and veterans have sacrificed greatly for our country.  While we should always show our gratitude for their service, Memorial Day is a great time to do something a little extra special for our brave and faithful soldiers.

1.  Reach out to a military family in your community  

Invite them over for dinner or bring them a meal.  Something as simple as running an errand, taking a walk with them, or watching children for a few hours can mean so much to a family who has a deployed spouse.

2.  Visit an older or wounded veteran

A happy visit can brighten a day and help a veteran to know they are not forgotten.  Contact your local nursing home or VA hospital for guidance on who you may visit.  Need some inspiration?  The Walter Reed National Military Center provides plenty of creative ideas on their Facebook page.

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3.  Make patriotic cookies

A thoughtful treat and a heartfelt “Thank You” goes a long way.  You can pick a local veteran or speak to your local nursing home about passing them out to the veterans in their care.

Memorial Day Cookies

4.  Offer to do yard work or home repairs

Having a spouse or parent deployed overseas is stressful for families.  If the children are young, this time can be especially difficult for the parent at home.  Mowing their lawn, repainting a fence, helping out with home maintenance, or planting flowers will not only help the family tremendously, but can also give the deployed solider peace of mind that their family is being cared for.

5.  Volunteer to place flags on grave sites

Contact your local American Legion or VFW organization to volunteer your time.

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6.  Send a letter

AMillionThanks.org will help match you with a soldier.  Even a gesture as simple as a letter expressing your gratitude and support can brighten a soldier’s day.

7.  Grant a wish

WoundedSoldiersWish.org gives you the opportunity to help grant the wish of a wounded soldier.

8.  Fund a scholar

The Armed Forces Children’s Education Fund is a non-profit corporation that financially assists the educational needs of the surviving children of the U.S. Military men and women who lost their lives.

9.  Adopt a soldier

Why only show your gratitude on Memorial Day?  Adopt a soldier and show your support during his or her deployment.  SoldiersAngels.org will match you up with a soldier that would love your support.

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10.  Never Forget

We often view Memorial Day Weekend as a kick-off to our summer.  Beach trips, camping, and backyard barbeques will soon fill our warm summer days.  However, the real reason behind this holiday weekend is to honor, remember, and show gratitude to America’s fallen heroes.  We must never allow ourselves to forget!

Celebrating 10 Years!

I am one lucky man.  Outdoor living is my passion, and outdoor living is what we do.  It is a wonderful feeling to wake up each day knowing we are doing something we’re passionate about.  Designing outdoor spaces has long been my idea of fun.  Playing in our garden, designing our patio, and taking design classes at the Morton Arboretum were once hobbies for me.  I had built a good career for myself, but I was missing that passion I wanted to feel on a daily basis. So, I went on a search for a way to combine my career with my passion. This is when I discovered the Archadeck franchise.

Ten years ago, Integrity Enterprises Inc. dba Archadeck of Chicagoland was born.  On February 19th, we will celebrate our 10th anniversary.  It has been fantastic to go to work every day knowing we are sharing our passion with Chicagoland families.  We are creating beautiful spaces for families and friends to gather and enjoy the great outdoors.

Over that past 10 years, we have seen a lot of changes and faced a number of challenges.  We not only survived the worst economy since the great depression; we actually flourished.  Projects we build have evolved from decks, screen porches, sunrooms, and pergolas to include paver patios, front porches, and open porches.  Our team has grown and enhanced our capabilities, and our company now covers all of the Chicagoland suburbs.

Screen rooms, pergolas, decks, patios, sunrooms

When we first started building our franchise, we began in the northern counties of Lake and McHenry.  As opportunities opened up, we expanded to the west and south.  Today we service all of the Chicago suburbs.  In 2012, we moved our office and growing team out of our basement and into our current showroom close to Woodfield Mall.

Of course, this move coincided with one of our original goals.  My wife, Kristen, joined me in the business and became a Design Consultant.  We met at work 20 years ago and have since dreamed of working together again.  I know many people may think it would be difficult to work with a spouse, but we love it!  She has excelled, helping to push our company forward.  Our children often come in to hang out in my office while we meet with clients and prepare designs, giving them the opportunity to see firsthand what it means to own your own business.  Archadeck of Chicagoland is truly a family operation.

As we’ve grown, we have carefully selected great team members to add to our family.  Our very foundation is built on dedicated, hardworking, and talented carpenters and crews.  Without our crew leads like John, Chris, Sonny, and Manuel, our designs would never come to life.  Of course, our office team is no less important.  Wendy, Sarah, and Margo work hard behind the scenes to keep the operation running smoothly.  Alex, our newest Design Consultant, is creative and talented. Tim, our Construction Manager, ensures the building process runs smoothly each and every time.  Our team members are key to our ability to continue to create the stunning outdoor living spaces Chicagoland has come to expect from us.

Archadeck Team - Fun

One constant over the years has been our great clients!  The number of clients we design for has increased significantly over the last 10 years, and we have been blessed with really great people to work with.  They have allowed us to learn about their family’s outdoor plans so that we may offer our recommendations and ultimately build their new outdoor spaces.  We work hard to make sure the end result of each project is a happy client.  Consistent customer service awards and ‘A’ ratings on Angie’s List, as well as the Better Business Bureau, reinforce that we are getting good results.  Of course, the best feedback comes when our clients introduce us to their friends so we may build their new outdoor space.  We would like to express our gratitude for sharing us so often with your friends and neighbors.

Thank you for allowing us to design and build your backyard getaway for the last 10 years.  We can’t wait to create your next outdoor living space!

Outdoor Living Gift Ideas

Rain or shine, cold or warm, we at Archadeck enjoy helping you create the outdoor living space of your dreams.  Whether it’s a patio, deck, pergola, or even fun ideas for the great outdoors; we want to help you create the perfect backyard experience.  With Christmas right around the corner, here are a few gift ideas any outdoor living lover will enjoy using all year round!

Christmas Gifts for the Outdoor Living Lover

Fall 2013 Bucket List

How much fun can be had in the autumn months?  Tons!
Host an outdoor party
Go on a fall camping trip
Visit a farmers market
Enjoy hot apple cider on the deck
Roast pumpkin seeds
Jump in a pile of leaves
Go to a harvest festival
Trick-or-Treat
Go on a fall nature photo scavenger hunt
Visit a pumpkin patch
Roast marshmallows over the fire pit
Go apple picking
Have a bonfire

2013 Fall Bucket List

 

 

Chicagoland Event Calendar: September – October

Fall is on its way, and with it come the many autumn festivals.  We at Archadeck love to spend time outdoors.  Come out and enjoy the live entertainment, sip on apple cider, sample the tasty fall foods, take the kids through the pumpkin patch, and much, much more!

Chicagoland Fall Festivals

Event

Location

Date

St. Michael Fall Fest Orland Park

Sep 19-22

Oaktoberfest Oak Park

Sep 20-21

Harvest Moon Bonfire Schaumburg

Sep 21

Fall Fest & Chili Cookoff Homewood

Sep 21

Norwood Park Fall Festival Norwood Park

Sep 21

Annual Autumn Fair Geneva

Sep 21

Long Grove Apple Festival Long Grove

Sep 27-29

Franciscan Fall Festival Tinley Park

Sep 27-29

Fall Family Fun Fest River Grove

Sep 28

Rogers Park Harvest Fest Rogers Park

Sep 28

Chilympics Chili Cook-Off Downers Grove

Sep 28

Fall Fest  Oak Park

Sep 29

Oktoberfest 2013 Naperville

Oct 4-5

Autumn Harvest Festival Schaumburg

Oct 6

Highwood Pumpkin Festival Highwood

Oct 17-19

All Hallows Eve Naperville

Oct 18-19

evergreenstatefaircandyapples

Designing The 2nd Place Dream Backyard Makeover Patio

We were delighted when the Hall family, local Palatine homeowners, won second place in the national Dream Backyard Makeover, sponsored by Archadeck and Belgard.  Their existing outdoor living space consisted of a cracked concrete patio closely surrounded by large bushes.  The young family had recently purchased the home and dreamed of having a beautiful open space to enjoy with their friends and family.

Archadeck Dream Makeover Contest - Before

After making the announcement that they had won, we got together to discuss how they envisioned their new outdoor living space.  Custom design is our specialty, so together we walked through the tried and true process we use to create the best design for their family.  To do this we focused on the four most important aspects of a design:  space, function, aesthetics, and budget.

  • It was important to know about any spatial issues they might have.  Knowing ahead of time where property lines and natural easements are help us to determine how much space is available to use, or to prepare a plan of action in the case a client may want to request a variance from the village for additional space.
  • Functional needs tie into the discussion of spatial issues. If we designed too small, the Halls would not be able to use the space as they had envisioned.  If we designed to large, they would have more patio than they needed and the space would go unused. Most of us don’t build patios and decks every day, so determining how much space you need can almost feel bewildering.  In order to help the Hall family determine how much space they would need, we discussed how they planned to use the space.  Did they just want an area to sit and enjoy the sun?  A place for a table and grill?  Enough room to comfortably host an outdoor party?  Each of these require different amounts of space.  Knowing what they ultimately want to do with their patio helped us determine the amount of space that would suit their needs.
  • Discussing aesthetics is also a key element in helping us design the right outdoor living space for our clients.  We showed the Halls several pictures of previous projects we have built, asking them to point out aspects they either liked or those they did not favor.  This helped us design specifically to their taste and style.
  • At Archadeck, we design to a budget.  We don’t want to develop a design that is two or three times what our clients want to invest. Knowing an ideal budget helps us keep a design within the parameters of what they are comfortable investing in their project.  This time was no different.  The Hall family won the second prize of the Dream Backyard Makeover contest, so we worked with them to design the perfect space while remaining within the designated amount alloted by the contest rules.

Once we had the design in place, we set everything in motion to begin building.  Breaking ground was an exciting moment for both the Halls and our Archadeck team!  We began by discussing building plans with our crew, making sure every detail was addressed before we began.  The crew broke up and removed the old concrete patio and put in new drain tiles.

Breaking Ground for Dream Backyard Makeover PatioNext they put the base in, getting everything set for the new Belgard Pavers. The Halls chose a wonderful combination of Buckingham Cobble and Weston Wall for their seat wall.

With the bricks laid, we put down grass seed and green matting to fill in the dirt that is left from building the patio.

Creating the Dream Backyard Makeover Patio

The outcome was beautiful.  We enjoyed the opportunity to work with them and hope they enjoy their new patio with family and friends for many years.

Archadeck Dream Backyard Makeover - 2nd Place Winner

Miami/Cuban Salsa

Looking for something scrumptious to serve at your next outdoor party?  Kristen Berryhill has shared this delicious salsa recipe.  Fresh herbs mixed with peppers, tomatoes, and black beans will leave your mouth bursting with flavor.  Every ingredient adds its own unique flavor, so don’t leave anything out.  It’s time to fire up the grill, bring out the chips, set up your patio or deck, and wow your guests with this amazing recipe!

Miami-Cuban Salsa Recipe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Miami/Cuban Salsa

1 can (16 oz.) black beans, drained

1 box (10 oz.) frozen corn

1 red pepper, diced

1 green pepper, diced

4-6 Serrano chilies de-seeded and diced

4 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1 can (16 oz.) diced tomatoes

Juice from one fresh lime

1 bunch scallions, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

1 avocado, diced

½ to 1 small red onion, diced

 

Mix it all together and enjoy!

 

Recipe courtesy of Kristen Berryhill

10 Tips For Growing Your Own Herb Garden

Herbs are great for creating fresh, tasty recipes and add a beautiful touch to your outdoor living space. Here are 10 easy tips for growing your own herb garden so you can get started today!

The weather is finally warming up here in the Chicago suburbs, and with it, outdoor living ideas are blooming.  Have you considered planting your very own herb garden?  Herbs are great for creating fresh and tasty recipes, home remedies, and much more.  They also add a beautiful touch to your outdoor living space, whether they’re planted in a garden or pots around your patio or deck.  So how do you get started?

Growing your own herbs

1.  Just do it! Growing your own herbs is cheaper than purchasing fresh herbs from the grocery store. The convenience of having fresh herbs on hand for your meals and the gratification of spending some time outdoors in the sun growing your garden is invaluable.

2.  Pick a sunny spot with good drainage. You will find most basic herbs love the sun and don’t like being too wet. Only a few ( like cilantro, lemon balm, and mint) like partial shade. If you want to plant in a container, you can plant each herb separately or put them all together in one big bowl. You can also plant them in pots according to the recipes you like to use them for, a Tai pot, an Italian pot, a chicken dinner pot. Use a soil-less potting mix that will drain well.

3.  Speaking of mint… Mint will take over all the other herbs and take over your whole yard if you let it.  Plant it alone in its own pot.

Planting herb gardens in the chicago suburbs

4.  Start with a few plants for instant gratification. Plants such as rosemary, thyme, and oregano are especially good to buy as starters. Be sure to water them before you transplant. Grassy herbs (like chives and parsley)  grow quickly from seeds.   Start these and other seedlings right in the pot or the outside spot where they’ll be living permanently

5.  Pick a spot near the kitchen.  This allows you to step right outside and snip off a sprig without having to trek through your yard.

6.  Plant some perennials.  Try sage, thyme, lemon thyme, chives, oregano, fennel, marjoram, and mint.

7.  Try a few annuals.  Big-leafed sweet basil or Genovese basil are great all-purpose basils that make for easy growing. Plant them when it’s hot outside when you plant your tomatoes.  Dill or lemon balm are some other good annuals to try.

Decorate your patio with your herb garden

8.  Don’t over water or over fertilize.   Water every few days when the top few centimeters of soil is dry.  Over fertilizing will cause the plants to produce too much foliage and they won’t have the intense flavor that a good herb should have.  Once a month is usually enough.

9.  Harvest often. Harvesting promotes growth and keeps plants in their growing.  Stop by your garden before dinner each night and snip away. You can harvest up to a third of the foliage. If you see a flower, clip or pinch it off. Once a herb flowers it is trying to finish its life cycle.

10.  Eat and enjoy! If your recipe calls for dried herbs, double or triple the amount instructed with fresh herbs.  They are not as concentrated as dried herbs.  Freeze any that you can’t use right away.  They’ll make delicious soups when the weather turns chilly again.

Herb garden container ideas for your deck or patio

 

 

 

Chicagoland Event Calendar: May – June

Spring has sprung!  Local events are a perfect way to enjoy the warm weather with friends and family.  Whether it’s in the city or the Chicago Suburbs, you’re sure to have a blast!

Summer 2013 Events Chicago Suburbs City

Event
Location
Date
Ravinia 2013 Schedule – Enjoy spectacular concerts in the park! Chicago June 6 – Sept 15
Taste of Glen Ellyn Glen Ellyn May 16 – 19
Spring Fun Fair Des Plaines May 18
Civil War Days Naperville May 18 – 19
Free Museum Day Elmhurst May 19
Red, White & BBQ Festival Westmont May 24 – 26
Young at Heart Festival Loves Park May 24 – 27
4th Annual Barrington Art Festival Barrington May 25 – 26
Piccadilly Circus St. Charles May 25 – 27
5th Annual Millennium Art Festival Chicago May 31 – June 2
First Fridays (Museum of Contemporary Art) Chicago June 7
11th Annual Promenade of Art Arlington Heights Arlington Heights June 8 –  9
Father’s Day Barbeque Brookfield Zoo June 16
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra at The Morton Arboretum Lisle June 30
Naperville Rib Fest 2013  (Carnival, food, music, and more!) Naperville July 3 – 7
Windy City Rib Fest Chicago July 5 – 7