All Clean Softwash January 2019



A DNA Test Leads to a Magical Connection

How We Discovered Our Long-Lost Relatives

A couple years ago, I wanted to give my daughter, Justine, some extra incentive to perform well in school. Like many parents, I offered her a reward if she got all A’s over the course of a term. When I asked her what she’d like, she gave me an answer that surprised me. Most kids would probably ask for a new phone or a few extra hours to play “Fortnite” each week, but not Justine. She instantly knew what she wanted.

We talked with our mom, and she was 100 percent certain she wanted to meet her mother. We set up a family reunion of sorts to introduce everybody to one another. I have to tell you that despite our trepidations, it was magical from the first moment Janet saw Leota. There was no doubt that these two are mother and daughter. From their looks to their mannerisms, they had so

“I’d love to take one of those DNA tests,” she said, “so I can find out how Italian I really am.”

My mom and my grandma

I thought that was a pretty cool request, but I had no idea just how life-changing it would become.

much in common! It was clear to all of us that both of our families had just gotten bigger in the most unexpected and wonderful of ways.

We’ve always known that my mom, Janet, was adopted, but we never had any idea who her birth mother was. So when Justine’s test came back with possible news of a family member we didn’t know existed, my jaw hit the floor immediately. It couldn’t be — could it? After we were pretty certain that we had indeed found my mom’s birth mother, the question became what we would do next.

These days, we spend as much time as we can with Leota and her family. We have so much catching up to do, and it’s amazing how quickly we’ve meshed. Leota and her other children, Lane, Loree, and Tina, regularly attend Justine’s performances. Leota never knew that she had grandchildren, let alone

It was a momentous discovery but also something of a delicate situation. I had no idea whether my mom would want to know about her long-lost mother or whether they’d want to know about her. I called my brother, Joe, for guidance, and he suggested that we reach out to the family and get their perspectives before we proceeded.

My mom, Janet, Uncle Lane, and Aunts Loree and Tina with Grandma

great-grandchildren, and she’s been relishing every minute of it. It’s remarkable to think that these relationships all resulted from the fact that Leota and Justine took the same DNA test. As we start the new year, I hope you’ll leave some time for unplanned adventures and unanticipated surprises. You never know what life will throw at you, and often, the best discoveries are the ones you weren’t planning to make in the first place.

My Grandma, Leota, and my mom

When we first called Lane, one of the mystery relative’s children, he thought we must’ve been mistaken. He didn’t even know his mom had given up a baby for adoption. But he called us back a few days later saying that we were right and that his mom, Leota, would love to meet her daughter. What’s even crazier is that Leota only lived 20 minutes away from us, despite the fact that my mom had been adopted out of Boise, Idaho.

–Jennifer Ricca


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3 Easy Ways to Recover Quickly From a Cold

nothing more than for it to be over and done. While there is no way to completely avoid getting sick, there are ways to speed up your recovery. Next time you’re suffering from a cold, try these remedies to get back on your feet a little bit faster. Elderberry Syrup Also referred to as elderberry extract, this syrup is made from a plant called European elder. It can be purchased at many health food stores or made at home (but use caution when doing this, since raw and undercooked elderberries are toxic). Many people swear by the berries’ ability to ease congestion and relieve a number of other cold symptoms. Plus, elderberry syrup is known for having anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties, making it an ideal tool for fighting the common cold. Some research even suggests that it can shorten flu symptoms by up to three days.

eucalyptus may offer the relief you’re looking for. Available in several different forms, including syrup, oil, and dried leaves, eucalyptus can be used as an expectorant or as a way to relieve a sore throat. When you’re at home and sick, try adding a few drops of eucalyptus oil to the water in a humidifier. The results are remarkably soothing! Zinc While many people turn to vitamin C to hurry through a cold, that’s not the supplement you should be focusing on. In fact, an overwhelming number of studies show that vitamin C does absolutely nothing to help shorten a cold. Instead, take zinc. You can find it as a nasal spray or lozenge, or even as part of a vitamin C supplement. One study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that those who took zinc reduced their recovery time from a cold by half. Cold symptoms among those taking a zinc supplement lasted about four days, while symptoms among those taking a placebo lasted about eight days.

During the winter months, colds and the flu can spread like wildfire. Getting sick at least once during the season can be hard to avoid, and once you are sick, you want

Eucalyptus If you’re suffering from congestion or can’t stop coughing,

Meet John Eisel A Sales Tech With an Eye for Service

John Eisel has been a sales technician with All-Clean! for over three years. His relationship with the company first began as a customer. “Brandon and his dad used to clean the windows at my home,” John recalls. “When the opportunity arose to join All-Clean! as a team member, I jumped at it.”

simply educate them on our services and help them realize the value of working with us. Our five-star service is a big help in that regard. When you have an excellent reputation, people need a lot less convincing.” Outside of work, John enjoys spending time with Sherri, his wife of 35 years. “I’m in my 60s now, so relaxing is my favorite extracurricular activity,” John says with a laugh. “Sherri and I both enjoy the outdoors and sharing quiet moments together. I’m very lucky to spend my life with her.” John sees a bright future for All-Clean! in 2019 and the years to follow. “I think we’ve just scratched the surface of everything we can do in this industry,” John reveals. “With our attitude of constant improvement and our desire to provide the highest level of service, there’s no limit to where we can go.” It’s people like John Eisel who make the future so bright for All-Clean! His attitude toward customer service is what we seek to embody each and every day.

Prior to becoming a member of our staff, John spent many years as the owner of Gresham TV & Cellular, so he knows a thing or two about sales and customer service. “I think the level of service is what sets us apart from everyone else in the industry,” John says. “The exterior washing world isn’t known for being customer-focused and hospitality-centered, but All-Clean! is changing that. I’m proud to be a part of that revolution.” In terms of sales, John thinks All-Clean! has a secret weapon: We’re selling something customers actually need. “Every single person I talk to can benefit from at least one of our services,” he notes. “That makes selling a joy. I never have to push offers down people’s throats. I



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With Bundled Services From All-Clean! Prepare Your Home for a Great Year

recipe title pulling out leaves. And if you decide that you want something in addition to gutter work, each of these packages affords you a discount on any other service you book with us. Unfortunately, we aren’t the people to call to help you lose those pesky 10 pounds or hold you accountable for skipping a visit to the gym. But if having a beautiful home is among your resolutions this year, we can certainly help with that! Call us today to plan out a full year’s worth of expert exterior cleaning services in a package that works for you. year-long program for home maintenance, including window washing, SoftWashing, roof cleaning, and more. We’re happy to work with you to create a package that makes sense for your home and budget. Aside from lowering the cost per service, bundled packages provide you with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have a dedicated team of professionals maintaining your home throughout the year. We will schedule your suite of services however you’d like, aligning them with your calendar and the needs of your home. After all, it wouldn’t make much sense to undertake a complete gutter cleaning weeks before the leaves begin to fall. In addition to multiservice bundles, we also offer four-season, gutter protection plans at three different pricing tiers. They’re great options for homeowners who want to avoid getting up on the ladder and

You’re probably making New Year’s resolutions right about now. Most people look to health, fitness, and finances as sources of inspiration for their resolutions, but we’d like to propose a different approach entirely. Why not resolve to make 2019 the cleanest and most beautiful year ever for your home? The best part of this resolution is that the only thing you need to do to accomplish it is call All-Clean! SoftWash today. At this time of year, we field an insane number of calls for gutter cleanings. While we’re more than happy to offer gutter cleaning as a one-off service, we also offer it as part of bundled service packages that save customers money. These packages allow you to set up a

INGREDIENTS • 8 slices brioche, 1/2-inch thick • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter • 2 large eggs • 1/8 cup heavy cream • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract • 2 cups cornflakes DIRECTIONS 1. On a large baking sheet lined with wax paper, place 4 slices of brioche and spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on each. Cover with remaining slices, creating sandwiches. 2. In a pie plate, beat eggs with cream and vanilla. In another, coarsely crush the cornflakes. 3. Lightly soak sandwiches in the egg mixture, then dredge in cornflakes, pressing to adhere. Return to baking sheet. Peanut Butter & Berry French Toast


• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter • 2 cups mixed berries • Powdered sugar, to sprinkle • Maple syrup, for serving

4. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Once melted and up to temperature, add sandwiches, cooking on one side until golden and crisp, about 2–3 minutes. 5. Return sandwiches to baking sheet, add remaining butter, and repeat on other side. 6. Top sandwiches with berries, sprinkle with powdered sugar, and serve with maple syrup.


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ALL-CLEAN SOFTWASH 15717 SW 74th Ave. Suite #400

Tigard, OR, 97224





Though podcasts have been around for over a decade, they have only recently found their stride in popular culture. And they don’t all feature nerds talking about “Game of Thrones.” In this form of audio entertainment, there really is something for everyone. A number of podcasts have broken into mainstream pop culture, like “My Favorite Murder,” “This American Life,” and NPR’s “Planet Money.” But these are only the tip of the iceberg. Here are a few lesser-known podcasts that are seriously worth your time. START SOMETHING FUN: ‘SPIRITS’ The title “Spirits” is a play on the stories told and drinks enjoyed on this podcast. Co-hosts Amanda McLoughlin and Julia Schifini offer a fresh take on myths, legends, and folklore. From Greek classics to the tale of the Javanese Mermaid Queen, these lifelong friends and mythology enthusiasts examine what the stories we tell say about our culture, traditions, and values. If you’re eager to fill your year with something kinda creepy and kinda cool, you can’t go wrong with “Spirits.” Start listening at GO ON AN ADVENTURE: ‘THE FAR MERIDIAN’ Audio dramas are back and thriving in the world of podcasts. “The Far Meridian” explores the story of Peri, a lighthouse keeper whose MY FAVORITE PODCAST PAGE 4 Listen to Something New

The Best Podcasts to Start in 2019

brother disappeared long ago. Peri is terrified of leaving her home, so she’s never discovered what happened to him. That changes when her lighthouse begins to appear in a new location every morning, initiating her search for her brother. Fantastically fun and painfully real, this is a story about the courage it takes to leave home behind. Join the girl in the lighthouse at


We all need some advice. Why not get it from someone who knows what they’re talking about? Marie Forleo is an entrepreneur, writer, and philanthropist. And according to Oprah, she’s a thought leader for the next generation. Her mission is to help you become the person you most want to be. On the podcast, Marie and her guests discuss business, relationships, fear, love, and so much more. Get inspired at This list is just a start to the wealth of amazing, diverse podcasts out there. News recaps, sports history, true crime, pop-culture throwbacks, and plenty more fantastic audio entertainment awaits on your phone’s podcast app. Start listening to your new obsession today!



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