* 1/2 yd fabric (cotton works best)
* screwdriver (phillips or flathead depending on your chair)
* a can of spraypaint (I chose one with a finish in it.)
*when recovering the backrest make sure you pull the fabric tight and use a lot of staples!
When I moved out on my own last summer my mom gave me you guessed it... a folding chair. It honestly was very ugly so i had to fix it. After sitting on it for about 6 months i figured it was time to finally get gettin'.
* 1/2 yd fabric (cotton works best)
* screwdriver (phillips or flathead depending on your chair)
* a can of spraypaint (I chose one with a finish in it.)
First i had to remove the backrest, seat and caps off of the legs.
Next I brought the frame outside (make sure its a nice sunny day!) to spray paint it. After the spray paint dried i also used a clear sealer to help hold the paint on better. (It works unless your boyfriend repeatedly brushes his office chair on it.)
While your chair is outside drying you can finish up with recovering the back rest and seat!
*when recovering the backrest make sure you pull the fabric tight and use a lot of staples!
I know I haven't posted in awhile and my only excuse is I am a mom and life got crazy and i forgot. I noticed the recipe to make this on the fridge while I was cleaning out the fridge at like 8pm Saturday night. Luckily I had made this the week before for the blog post and took pictures... (Yay past me!)
* 3 Leeks
*3 cloves of garlic
*4 cups spinach
* 12 cups water
* 2 green peppers
* small bag of tortellini (I believe it was 9 oz)
Step 1: First I made the spinach broth
*Bring 12 cups of water to a boil
*4 cups of spinach
*3 garlic cloves (sliced or diced)
*1/2 T pepper
*1tsp oregano, chives & salt
*1/2 tsp curry
While this boils (about 15 mins) I cut up the other vegetables and put them into the crock pot.
After you start boiling the spinach broth you can dice up the veggies and throw them all into the crock pot.
*2 Green Peppers
Once your broth is done you can add it to the veggies in the crock pot and add the small bag of tortellini. I let my soup cook on low for about 4-5 hours and it was amazing. I'm sure you could put it on high for only an hour or two but that's one experiment left up to you!
This is a project I have waited since last summer to put my little DIY hands on, mainly because it was my boyfriends house and I didn't want to intrude. OBVIOUSLY that is not the case anymore. :)
The doors leaning against the house were the old barn/garage doors that we were hoping to sell but nobody ever got back to us. they took up A LOT of space and would have been super awkward to burn without cutting them up or tearing them apart... and boy were they HEAVY! Underneath those doors was a pile of 2x4's and 100ft of hose. I don't have much money for projects so I try to get by doing them as cheap as I can and I'm proud to say that this makeover cost us $80 and after we get an umbrella and stand it will be under $200!
Here are a few before(ish) photos
Luckily we had these bad boys on the patio so we didn't have to move them too far. First we had to tilt them onto the table to cut the bottoms off. Since my amazing boyfriend is handy thanks to his dad, he decided it would be best to nail a board to the bottom to help keep the boards from going where they shouldn't.
Next the walls went up! We (Chris and Angus) held the walls up and hammered them closer to the wall of the house and then screwed them to the side of the house.
**Be careful doing this because it will put holes in the siding! We don't care about that because the siding needs to be replaced anyways.**
Here is the patio before we put the table back. The bench and walls are finished and then we used a garden stirrup to get all of the weeds out of the cracks. I hung up some lights and headed off to make some pillows for the bench!
Here it is at night. The solar lights are just dim enough where they don't attract a lot of bugs and i also have a wine bottle torch on the table filled with citronella to help keep bugs away.
This post will lack my normal amount of pictures, mainly because my hands were very dirty and i didn't want to get it all over my phone. This idea and the supplies was given to me by my mom (Julie). Thanks mom!
Step one: gather your supplies
Step two: fill the pot with dirt, measure your fencing and zip tie the ends together (it is best if the ends overlap each other)
*my fence was bendy enough so I did not need zip ties i just bent the metal around to hold it together
Step three: set the fence cylinder on the dirt and push it down into the pot a few inches.
Step four: line the fence with landscaping cloth and then fill it with dirt!
After you do this what you want to plant in the tower depends on what you do next. I have decided I am going to be planting flowers so i will plant some on the top and in where the dirt is showing between the pot and fence. After i get the flowers I will be cutting X's in each rectangle of the fence and put one plant in each.
Step one: pull out the drawers
* I felt bad throwing away/ burning perfectly good drawers, so instead I slid them under K's bed for extra storage space!
Step two: unscrew the drawer track and bust out the interior
*I left the back support because I wasn't sure if it would mess with the structure or not... plus K can set little things on them like a shelf.
Step three: finish the interior
*paint, stain, wallpaper etc
Now this step will vary from person to person depending on how you want it to look. I stained the wood on the inside and added our old push up bar (because let's be honest... this girl doesn't do push-ups) I toyed with stapling fabric or painting... but this seemed to be the easiest. I also chose not to put a bottom on it because if I know my daughter she will be climbing in it ASAP.
Here is the almost finished product! I am still on the hunt for a smallish rectangle mirror to attach to the outside of the closet but until then it's done!
I am REALLY excited for her to see it!! :D
I decided that for my project spanning the next week or two would have to be about my new garden. I am sorry but this is my first garden and I am VERY excited. I cannot wait to be able to eat food that I planted and grew myself. I do realize that my goals are set very high and i probably won't get as much as i am hoping for... but that's okay.
Now the first step should be building your raised bed frame and then getting the dirt to fill it. The nursery we ordered our dirt from showed up two days early! (I'm guessing because we are supposed to get snow the day they dropped it off) With this in mind, I have to get my bed built AND put in the dirt BEFORE it snows.... and the race is on.
Step one: should be build your frame and then hope the dirt guys will back up far enough and dump most of the dirt into your raised bed.. but apparently for me this is not the case... either way get your dirt!
*Make sure you call ahead and get quotes as well as dates when they will drop off. One place we called was dropping off in 2-3 weeks for $180 and another would drop off the same week we called (ended up being sooner) for $190... that 2 week difference was worth the $10 in my book.
Step two: if necessary call reinforcements!! I had to get this bed knocked out and filled ASAP, plus i had no clue what i was doing! (This is where I would like to take the time to thank my grandma, grandpa and boyfriends mom Barb)
Step three: gather your raised bed boards and cut them to the size you want or need. My sizes are 10' X 6' 5" (don't ask why its not just 6' because i have no clue)
Step four: haul the boards around the garage and place them where you want for assembly.
Step five: This step may not be applicable to you but my boards were in two 10' sections so i had to attach them together. My grandpa put in the first screw to show me how to properly do it. As stated before, I haven't done this and using the power drill for something besides hanging a picture was a bit intimidating, but i did the rest of them myself.
Step six: stand up the bed walls and attach the corners. For this i used brackets from my grandpas old deck we tore up last summer. Luckily he keeps EVERYTHING because even the small boards we used in the picture above were deck boards. (Did i mention how awesome he is??!!)
Step seven: lay down and attach landscaping cloth, we used Tyvek because we didn't have anything else and like I said before this was all thrown together in one day. Thanks for doing the cloth grandma!! once that is done you can add your compost (as pictured)
Step eight: Fill the bed with your dirt! I STRONGLY suggest using a wheelbarrow. Ours had a flat tire and i thought Chris said he inflated it for me but I guess he didn't and I used it... once. After that i used a 5 gallon bucket... to fill the WHOLE thing. i got this far and got tired, but Chris has gotten a new wheel for the barrow (lol) so tomorrow if it's not snowing maybe i can finish filling up the garden!
For about 4 years now I have been making my own laundry soap. I found many different recipies on Pinterest but i never seemed to really like any of them. I FINALLY found one on http://whynotsew.blogspot.com . I still wasn't 100% thrilled with it but that is just because i am picky about my soap. I took this recipe and changed it a little to suit me.
*1 bar of soap (I use Ivory)
*1 cup of Borax
*1 cup of washing soda
*big pot ( that holds more than 2 gallons)
*BIG bowl or second pot
*4 empty gallon jugs
After your soap gets to a warmer temperature where it won't melt the container you are using go ahead and put it in. (If you let it cool too much it can be very difficult to get it into the container.) Don't forget to use a funnel!!
I use a fridge water container to hold laundry soap, and i store it on top of the washer so i can just pull open the soap drawer and pull up the little tab and that's it, no measuring cups or anything! Of course all 4 gallons of soap won't fit in this container so i keep the extra in empty milk jugs under the stairs (Make sure you label them!!)
I get about 800 loads out of 4 gallons of laundry soap. The cost to make the soap is $6, so that is $1.50/gallon and i use 1/2 cup per load which is about 5 cents!
Please leave your comments, I would love to know if this tutorial helped you make your detergent!
Today seems to be an age of instant gratification. You see so many places out there that cash your checks BEFORE payday and rent-a-centers where you can rent furniture or other household appliances. To me all of this is wasteful. Last week I wrote about ways to make money from home. While that is fine and dandy, let's be honest, making extra money for an already tight budget may just not be good enough. It could be cutting something out you didn't realize you didn't need or replacing it with a homemade version.
Get it used
There are so many different places you can get cheap items from here are a few of my favorites:
* Local Facebook garage sale sites (I may be paranoid but please bring someone with for exchanges!)
*Thrift stores (check for sale days!)
*Craigslist (again, I may be a little paranoid but ALWAYS bring someone with you)
*Your own Facebook page! (it may seem strange, but if you need something just ask because someone you know may have it!)
I know, I know. How could you EVER live without . Look at what it is you are wanting/missing and ask yourself these questions:
*Did I go without this before?
*Is it a need or a want?
*How much will it cost (and keep costing)?
*Is it good for me/us?
*Is there an alternative?
I had this issue today while standing in the store with my friend Chasity. She was ahead of me in line and I was stuck behind her staring at the snacks at the register. I saw my weakness (Funyuns) and thought "OOOH those look so good!" I almost grabbed them with my reasoning being they were only $1.29 (or so) and that I was hungry. Realizing that I didn't NEED them was easy to see, but it was very difficult to not get them anyways.
For the example I want to use, let's say it's TV service:
*Q. Did i go without this before?
A. Chances are yes you have. there are other alternatives to TV (streaming and places like Netflix or Hulu)
*Q. Is this a need or a want?
A. This is completely up to you but as for me TV is a want. (the time i'm on the TV I could be blogging, crafting, cleaning, exercising, laying with my daughter... the list goes on and on)
* Q. How much will it cost and will it cost me over and over?
A.Figure out the initial cost and if it is a one time thing and you are willing to pay it then go for it. As for something like TV you have to pay monthly. I cannot see why i should spend say $40/ month to sit on my behind, eat food and not pay attention to my life.
*Q. Is it good for me/us?
A. For me it is a no. While I am watching TV, I am not exercising and I am eating. Sometimes I even find myself on my phone. Why in the world should I even be wasting the electricity to watch TV if I am not paying attention?! I save TV for before bed to help me unwind.
*Q. Is there an alternative?
A. So instead of paying say $40 to $120/month for TV look into alternatives like
-Streaming (aka FREE...well, with SOME advertising)
-Netflix the highest plan being about $13/mo
-Hulu with the pricing being about the same
-Don't forget about a decent Antenna, you can spend $40 to $60 dollars ONCE, and get all your local network shows, a lot of sports, and news for almost FREE!
Even if you get both of those you are coming out paying about$30/month and your shows are there so you don't have to worry about missing them! (Go out and live your life!)
Please, do not scroll past this section. Yes, there are some crazy couponing, stockpiling people out there. They are addicted to finding an amazing deal and not passing it up no matter what. you can still coupon and save A LOT of money and not be like that. Go to your family, friends, neighbors or anyone else you know who gets the Sunday paper and ask for their coupons when they are done. I currently get between 3 and 5 sets of coupons from different family members. (Thank you Grandma, Aunt Cookie, Mom, Vince and Barb!) You would be surprised at how many people throw them away. (If interested please comment below and I will do another post about how to effectively coupon)
DIY! (My favorite hobby!)
I try to do projects that better my home/lifestyle in some way:
*laundry soap (for people in the area I sell this)
*body wash (this too!)
*un-paper towels (I sell these in my items for sale tab)
*un-sponges (these too!)
*wet mop refill cartridges
I could go on and on forever about all of these different money saving projects but I will stop for now and leave this for another post. Try to find things around your house you spend a lot of money on and comment them below.
Here is a challenge, I want you to go through your life and come up with all of the things you spend money on that you don't want/have to, add up your groceries etc. See how much you spend? Do you think there is a possibility that it could be cut down? This is just the beginning of a few months of different things you can make at home yourself to save a bundle. Now seriously, add up your budget because after you do these projects it will make you feel a lot better about how much you are saving.
Now in the spirit of this post it is time for me to go watch some streamed TV. (Yay free TV.!!)
This week my post has been inspired by my friend from high school Amber. I would like to congratulate her because today is her very first day as a Stay at home mom! I offered my help to her because in my short time as a stay at home mom I found myself bored, lacking money, and generally frustrated because it was not all I hoped it would be. Now that I am making another attempt at it I decided to be a WHAM (work at home mom) and so far it is going better than the last time. Every mom (or dad) should think about being at home with their children and it shouldn't not be an option unless you of course love the job you are at. Amber (and any other new stay at home moms), I would like to give you a little advice. Going into this you may have very high goals and that's okay! Try to keep them reasonable and if you don't get everything you want done or your day didn't go as planned please don't feel like you didn't do a good job. There are days where your house will be messy, or your child won't cooperate and eat their meal or take their nap. It happens and it doesn't mean you didn't do a good job.
I was reading on another blog about being a WAHM. For some reason I NEVER thought about being able to still make money AND be at home. During this post I will be talking about my personal experiences and what worked best for me. Feel free to tweak my advice to make it work in your best interest. I will only be talking about ways to make money that I have tried as I REFUSE to be one of those bloggers who writes about everything. The sites or apps I write about are ones that I have personally tried and obviously liked enough to use.
Here are the apps that can be used to make some extra money...
*EBATES: This isn't really a money making site, but it does help you save money when you buy things online. So say you need a new item, you go to ebates create your account (blah blah blah) and start searching. Once you find the store/item you are looking for you can purchase it. Ebates (according to their refund policies) will send you your”rebate” I love this because
A. I don't have to leave my house to go shopping
B. it will usually get delivered to my house
C. I get money back on an item that I was going to be buying at full price anyways
*Swagbucks: is a free site where you can earn rewards, gift cards or cash (via PayPal) On swagbucks you can do simple tasks, polls, and surveys. You won't make a living on this site, but I love doing easy stuff like this while my daughter naps or when I am sitting on the couch watching TV.
*IPSOS Isay: I wasn't a huge fan of this one but only because I use swagbucks. You can use them both at the same time to earn more but I honestly got lazy and didn't feel like it. Now that all of this is being brought up again I am definitely going to be doing it again though.
*IBOTTA: is a mobile app that you can search for stores or items and use coupons. Although you cant get the money off right away after you have a certain amount in your account you can withdraw it.
*Shopkick: This app is by far the best app I have run into. You turn it on before you go into stores and get kicks just for walking in. you can also scan items on their list around the store to earn, you can also scroll through their products and when you run into an envelope there is 1kick in it. You are not required to buy anything, but if you choose to because it is on your list you can scan your receipt and earn extra kicks. You can save all of your kicks to either enter into drawings, get gift cards or other prizes that they are currently offering.
*Receipt hog: This is a receipt app where you take a picture of your receipts and hit send... and yes that's it! After you earn points you can use them to get gift cards.
*Mechanical Turk: go to Google and type in Mechanical Turk. This is through Amazon, you can do simple tasks which only take a few minutes to watching full length movies and putting on captions or tagging inappropriate content. The pay varies, I have transcribed a receipt for 20 cents but I have also captioned a movie for $30 (not to mention I got to see a brand new movie AND get paid for it!) You can either get amazon credit or they transfer money to your Pay pal account.
These are things that I have done to make some extra money that don't require a phone or internet..
*Laundry service: If you have your own washer and dryer you can make a post or talk to your friends/family and see if anyone wants their laundry done weekly. (I did laundry when I lived in an apartment building for a couple of the older neighbors, and while I had to pay $2/load to do it I could charge $10 and still make $8) It seems silly but there are people out there that don't like to do laundry and if they are driving past your house to go to work and you can have it done so they can pick up on their way home that's a huge selling point!
*Cleaning: I clean homes for three people, I offer weekly, every other week and monthly. You want to make sure that you charge what your time is worth to you and if business starts to get busy either share your customers with other people or start an actual business. I charge $20/hr and I haven't had one person complain and have had many people tell me I should charge more. Just keep in mind that you are cleaning other peoples homes and this defeats the purpose of working from home, so you don't want more than a couple clients.
*DIY-ing: If you are crafty and it kills you when your hands aren't busy start to sell your products! Whether it's knitting, sewing, crocheting or whatever you do best see if you can make a buck doing what you love. You can sell on Facebook, Etsy, craft fairs, farmers markets etc.
*Blogging: If you start a blog and get enough traction on it you can get ads placed through google and then make money from the advertisers. You will want to pick something important to you so you are inspired and don't give up. It can take awhile to see profits from blogging, but when you get there it can be a good addition to the extra income you are making.
*Breast milk: This one is obviously only for newer moms. There are websites out there where you can sell your extra breast milk, I found one called tiny treasures that seems to be the most legit place. (obviously I have not done this one as my daughter is almost 3 but I plan to if I were to have another) This site offers $1/oz which is pretty good considering you would just be dumping it anyways! I don't know how long you can keep pumping for even if you have finished breastfeeding but I don't see why you couldn't keep selling your milk as long as your doctor and the tiny treasure reps are all okay with it.
*Baby/pet sitting: If you are at home and watching your own children why not add one to two more? When I babysat for a family friend I watched her newborn for $20/day when I was on maternity leave. She was a single mom with not a lot of money who needed a cheap sitter. Again, you don't need to follow my pricing, this is just what the baby's mom could afford. I would not recommend doing babysitting and pet sitting at the same time because other peoples children and pets shouldn't really be mixed together (I'm sure there are huge liability issues there)
As I find there ways to make money from home I will add to this post, but for now this is what I have! Next week's post will be ways to save money around your home and different things you can replace with reusable versions to help cut down costs. I hoe you enjoyed today's post and found something useful! PLEASE feel free to comment below!
This week I decided to dive into a home decor project. I was a given a few small “pallets”. I scoured the internet (mainly Pinterest) and found a fantastic coffee mug rack. In the spirit of making it my own I did not click on the link for the directions and figured it out on my own.
Step 1: Acquire or make your Pallet
Finding a pallet can be easy if you know where to look. I would suggest looking on a Facebook garage sale page or you can try asking around at local stores. Make sure you try local instead of big box because, big box stores are more apt to reuse their pallets to save money. I got my pallet from my dad so it didn't cost anything... Thanks dad!
Step 2: Prep your pallet
*sand your pallet so it's nice and smooth
*stain it (let dry overnight after desired amount of coats)
I was kind of nervous about the second part because I have not made an attempt at staining in my adult life thus far. I have previously done it but it was my moms garden fence and let's be honest...that's A LOT of fence for a young adult to stain on their own...this was a much less daunting task and far more enjoyable.
Step 3: This is where you would add your cute words you want like "coffee" or "tea" but, I chose to have more hooks than cuteness because I have a coffee mug problem. I did, however, force my boyfriend to take a picture with me of us "sipping" out of our favorite mugs, which I then had him print out and I out in a frame. I plan on hanging this in the big hole in the middle of the rack. (Did I mention how awesome he is for putting up with all of my nonsense?)
Step 4: Add hooks
*self explanatory right?
I had to ask for help with this one because apparently, my twiggle arms cannot put 12 hooks in by myself. So, a big thank you to my friend Allen and boyfriend Chris for helping me out in this department.