Monday, February 24, 2014

Update on Progress

Feed Sack Totes: A Great Way to Recycle
This past weekend had it share of ups and downs. First for the down: My radiator blew. It was sort of my fault and sort of not. We noticed the clip for the fan (the fan is electric) was broken when we were replacing the water pump. We should have taped it to ensure its connection, but we didn't. Anyway, I was waiting for someone so we could leave for a weekend trip. While waiting, I left the car idling. Evidently the fan had disconnected and the car overheated. The next thing you know, steam was pouring out from under my hood. $145 later, I have a new radiator installed and need to purchase a new front grill. Yes, my luck was doubly bad when the hood release failed. In order to get the latch open, we had to bust in through the front grill. Replacing that part should be another $100. Meanwhile, my Jeep has a big, black smile.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

USB Electrical Receptical - Reduce Recharging Clutter and Cords

Leviton USB Receptacle
I hate the amount of charging cords that I have plugged in around my house. Of course, like you, I plug my iPod, cell phone, camera, etc. in where it is most convenient, which means that the most convenient plug on my kitchen counter is always full and the counter always a mess. I need to reduce this clutter and find a more viable solution. My answer is USB electrical receptacles.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Homestead Ready Vehicle

The time finally arrived for me to sell my BMW and buy something more practical for use on a homestead in the sticks. I was glad to see her go in a way, but sad in another. She had high mileage and her starter was going. However, she was still a zippy little car and fun to drive.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Mason Jar Monday - A Little Bit of Change

Mason Jar Bank Round Up! 

Here are some clever ways to use Mason Jars to collect all that loose change floating around your house!

My Kind Of Crafty Etsy Store

Paige Knudsen

Credit: Unknown

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sears Kelvinator Country Kitchen Vintage Electric Range

I got it! I finally was able to score a vintage looking range for my Shouse. I found one listed on Craigslist. The gentleman that had it was moving. He was asking quite a bit more than I was able to pay so I wrote him an email with my offer. I was honest and upfront that I could not go higher, was not trying to be insulting, and was hopeful that, if he didn't have anyone else buy it, he would consider my offer. I was very fortunate that he took my offer of $300. I am so thrilled!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Best Toothbrush Ever!

Every few months I go through the ritual of replacing my toothbrush. This common, used- twice-a-day item is one that I am perplexed by each time. Looking at the variety of styles, firmness, and number of bristles is mind boggling for this most simple of hygiene items. I stand in front of the display and look over the variety, but the choice is normally influenced primarily by the bottom line. The bottom line is the price. I always figure if I don't like the one I chose, I will be replacing it soon enough so no big deal.

The other day while grocery shopping at my local whole food market, I was perusing the hygiene isle when I spotted this toothbrush. I found it intriguing. The number of bristles and the shape of the head were what caught my eye. Then I spotted the price tag. $9.99 for a toothbrush. No way would I pay that much for a toothbrush. Now, I am no fool. I know that many "natural" products or products marketed as "good for the environment" are often marked up significantly, especially at stores such as this.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Hunting for Character in Appliances

Look closely at the stoves I show here. What do you see? Look closer. Right! They are stoves that look like old-school wood burning stoves, but are, in fact, electric. How cool is that?

Monday, February 3, 2014

Keeping Lemons Longer - Store Them In Water

Will Lemons Keep Longer in the Fridge?
Happy Mason Jar Monday everyone. Today I have an experiment to share with you. I have heard tell that lemons will last 4 to 6 months if stored in the refrigerator in a jar filled with water. I have decided to try it out seeing as how lemons never last long in my house. Typically I store them in a bowl with other fruits and veggies. I rarely have them for longer than a week, maybe two, before they need to be tossed. While at the store the other day I found the most decadently smelling lemons I have found in a long time and decided to buy a bag. Knowing I won't use them before they spoil, I decided that we will use them to find out if the old wives tale is true or not.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

DIY Safe Battery Recycle Container

Recently there was a post going around on Facebook about a house that burned down due to a 9 volt battery's contacts being touched by another 9 volt battery's contacts and the resulting spark leading to fire. Evidently the two of them touching together causes an arc or spark and the recycle bin being full of other batteries and materials was ripe to fuel flames.

Having created an awesome recycle center for my new shouse, I got to thinking about recycling batteries and creating a bin for that as well. While I will be using rechargeable batteries, many products will come with batteries that will eventually need recycled. Even button batteries from watches and children's toys should not go into the regular trash.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

DIY Recycle Center - IKEA Hack

I adore shopping in the Scratch and Dent area of IKEA. Every IKEA location has one. This section of the store contains items that are slightly damaged, floor models, returns (often with not  a thing wrong but the item is already assembled), and items that are missing parts. It is also my favorite place to sit and people watch since it is by the front registers. During my last trip I found these fantastic trash cans that I had admired in the catalog.

Knodd bins are quality epoxy/powder coated steel. They come in three colors: black, galvanized, and white and have nice lids. I chose the white, although they are more of a cream color than white, which I really like. The finish is a satin finish, not a gloss. Each measures 20" high and have a diameter of 16.25", so they are not too large for most spaces. They hold 11 gallons and are ok around areas of moisture or humidity since the coating helps prevent rust. The ones they had in the Scratch and Dent section this trip were not really a scratch and dent, in fact they were not damaged at all. The bins I scored were simply missing their handles. Typically the Knodd bins retail for $24.99 each, but these ones were marked just $9 each!!