Thursday, August 23, 2012

Watermelon, Watermelon in My Garden

Can you see it? It is hiding there in the midst of all the leaves. Yay! We are so happy to see it. I'm wondering if there will be enough time before summer is over to harvest it.
From Wikipeida.
 Watermelon is a vine-like (scrambler and trailer) flowering plant originally from southern Africa. Its fruit, which is also called watermelon, is a special kind referred to by botanists as a pepo, a berry which has a thick rind (exocarp) and fleshy center (mesocarp and endocarp). Pepos are derived from an inferior ovary, and are characteristic of the Cucurbitaceae. The watermelon fruit, loosely considered a type of melon – although not in the genus Cucumis – has a smooth exterior rind (green, yellow and sometimes white) and a juicy, sweet interior flesh (usually deep red to pink, but sometimes orange, yellow and even green if not ripe).

We haven't tried to grow watermelon for a few years because it takes up so much room. If it turns out good, we may plant more next year.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Ten Uses (Other Than the Obvious) For Hair Conditioner

Hair conditioner has only been around for about 60 years; in the 1950's Swiss scientists developed the compound that improved hair health. Life without the married set of shampoo and conditioner in my shower would be quite a bit frumpier, but aside from the obvious use as a hair softener, there are many uses for this delightful Swiss creation.

1. Clean "Dry-Clean Only" Garments.
             Sometimes, we feel obligated to spend extra money on the upkeep of expensive things, but dropping 20 bucks at the Dry-Cleaners for our silk shirts and trousers every week can really add up. Remove this extra cost by filling up a sink with water (warm for whites and cold for colors) adding a tablespoon of hair conditioner, putting the item in the water for a few minutes, pulling it out, rinsing it, and hanging it up to dry.

2. Make That Stainless Steel Gleam.
             Avoid expensive chemicals and a trip to the store by putting conditioner onto your kitchen utensils, bathroom appliances, sports equipment, and anything else that is looking lackluster, simply rub it off with a cloth and you'll be blinded by the shine.

3. Shine Up Your House Plants.
             So your leafy little sun-sucker is looking a bit dusty? No fear! Hair conditioner is here! Put a bit of this magical substance onto a soft cloth and apply a thin layer to the leaves of your oxygen-blowing, CO2-consuming, water drinking friend.

4. Stop Your Zipper From Getting Stuck.
             It's pretty annoying to work a zipper free from the jammed teeth of it's partner only to have it get stuck the next time you try to zip up your jacket. To avoid this pain, dab conditioner along the teeth, this will act as a lubricant to stop it from getting stuck again. 

5. Keep Rust Off Tools.
             In order to prevent rust spawning on your wrenches and screwdrivers, rub down your tools with hair conditioner.

6. Oil Those Axles.
             Get rid of the annoying squeak of un-oiled skate wheels. Apply a layer of conditioner to the axles and that obnoxious noise will be obliterated.

7. Save the Shoes! 
             Winter can be a tough time in the life of a shoe, having to slosh around in icy messes, walking on salted sidewalks, and kicking through snowbanks. Protect boots and shoes by rubbing a bit of conditioner on them, who knows, you might save their lives. Plus, it also works as an excellent leather conditioner too.

8. Dismiss Razor Burn.
             Aside from the popular use of hair conditioner as shaving cream, it can also be used as a lotion to sooth razor burned legs.

9. Take Off Make-Up. 
             Don't spend 8 bucks on make up remover when you can use something you already have! Hair conditioner can be used to gently and quickly remove make-up and to smooth skin.

10. Take Off a Stuck Ring.
            So maybe trying on mom's wedding ring wasn't the best idea, and now it's stuck... great. No worries though! Simply lubricate the finger in hair conditioner, and that little piece of metal should slide right off, if not, you may have to cut off your finger. :-)

There are so many things you can do with a little bottle of hair conditioner, if you are changing conditioners consider saving the old one it for something else.

Ideas from: Reader's Digest : extraordinary uses for ordinary things


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Non-Toxic Homemade Bathtub Cleaner

 Have you ever wanted to clean your bathtub and not use that "green Stuff" that we all sang about when we were kids? (...makes your mouth turn green.....makes you vomit.....) Remember it?

Here is a great simple recipe we use in our home when we clean the tub. I change out the oils every so often and use lemon or orange for a more citrus scent.
  • 1/3 cup cup Borax
  • 1/3 cup cup Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon liquid Dish-washing Soap
  • 5 drops Rosemary essential oil
  • 5 drops Tea Tree essential oil
Stir all ingredients together to blend. It can take a couple of minutes to blend it thoroughly.  You can store this in a reusable plastic container. I make this every three months or so.

Use a sponge to scrub the tub and rinse. Voila! A clean smelling bathtub that is non-toxic and inexpensive.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Easy Recipe For Homemade Window Cleaner

Make your own non toxic cleaning supplies out of ordinary household items. Now that it is almost summer, I know I'd like to look out of windows that are clean! 
Here is a simple recipe I found that works well and is green and inexpensive to make.

1 Gallon Water
1/2 Cup White Vinegar
1/2 Teaspoon Liquid Dish Detergent ( I use Seventh Generation)

Mix it up and store in spray bottles. This mixture works as well as the glass cleaners you find in the store. They are much better for you and much easier on your pocketbook.  Make some up today and see what you think.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Home Improvements Can Be Green

Whether you only have a hundred dollars to spend on a home improvement project or thousands at your disposal, the prospect of enhancing and adding value to your home is very exciting for most people. These carefully selected home improvement tips and tricks are just the thing to get you inspired and ready for your next project.

Choose flat or matte paint for wall imperfections. If you use a flat or matte paint on a less than perfect wall, it will hide the little imperfections. This type of paint is useful for ceilings, bedrooms, and living room walls, too. Just remember that while it is easy to touch up, this kind of paint is quite difficult to clean.

If you are lucky enough to have a deck on your home, then you probably do routine cleaning such as sweeping and general removal of outdoor debris. You should also do a deep cleaning of your deck surface at least once a year. Remove everything from your deck to give yourself plenty of room to work.

When you buy new appliances to improve your home, don't just set the old ones out by the curb to take up space in the land fill. Take some time to find a local recycler if they are broken. If they still work, donate them to your favorite charity or sell them for a few dollars to someone who needs them.

There are all types of things that can be done in order to improve your home. This includes many projects which can be done by yourself. One of the easiest and most rewarding projects that a beginner can try is to build a deck. Many people have been successful with this.

When improving the outdoor of your home, replace your garage door. When someone is looking at your home from the outside, the garage door is a major feature. You can install a new garage door to provide your home with a new and good looking feature that will attract attention to your home.

Something that can be done in the way of home improvement is to theme your rooms. For example you may want to have a teddy bear theme in one of your bathrooms and have a native Indian theme in your living room. Doing this will add a level of flare and comfort to your home.

If you have the available financial resources, why wait another day to get started on your next home improvement or landscaping project? Regardless of the scope and scale of the new project, the useful information found in this article will most certainly make the process far more simple and stress-free.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Improving Your Home Tips and Tricks

If you're interested in improving your home but aren't sure how to, then look no further. This article is geared to help you learn ways to improve your house with many insightful tips. Just make sure you read and digest the information because that's the only way you're going to see any type of real change.

When looking for home improvement ideas to help your home sell, do not forget about storage space. Adding additional shelving and cabinets in the garage or custom storage to the closets are a great way to get organized, but also help in the resale of your home. Home buyers are always looking for additional storage space.

When doing upgrades on your home, make sure you do not invest much into an upgrade that cannot possibly get you a return when you sell it. For example, do not pay $30,000 to upgrade a kitchen in a home that you paid $90,000 for if most houses in the area only sell for around $100,000.

TIP! If you are forming the construction of your house, try not to put a television in the kitchen. If you love television, you will then spend more time in the kitchen.

If you hate painting and paneling, try wallpaper. Wallpapering your home is a very simple and inexpensive way to add a new look to any room. Be cautious of which paper you choose, as some are much more difficult to remove than others, in the case you may not like it in the future.

For a quick and affordable way to update the appearance of your master or guest bathroom, consider purchasing coordinated metal fixtures. Towel racks, toilet paper holders, shower curtain rods and cabinet knobs, are available in a variety of shapes and finishes. Many home improvement stores offer these fixtures as part of a complete, coordinating package, that can easily be installed in a single day.

You can easily change the look and feel of your furniture simply by purchasing distinctive new knobs, handles, and drawer pulls. These accents can be purchased individually or as part of a set for added savings, and the selection of colors, materials, and shapes is virtually infinite. This is also an excellent option to update antique or vintage furniture that is missing its original hardware.

TIP! Take a sponge to your drywall! Don't sand your drywall seams, sponge them. With practice, a wet sponge is just as effective in smoothing out the seams of a drywall job as is careful sanding.

Take a close look at your home and ideas. As with any home improvement project, you need to know where to begin. Looking through your entire home and cataloging changes you want to see if you can get the best idea of where to start out. Work through the list from necessity to wants.

Hopefully, with the information you acquired from this article, you're feeling like you have a better idea of what it is you need to do to improve your home. Now that you have this knowledge, formulate strategies for success and apply them wherever you see fit. If you do that, you should be satisfied with the results.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Interested in How You Can Add Green Energy To Your Lifestyle?

How can green energy change your life? It can do a number of things, such as reducing your need to rely on the electrical grid, lowering bills, and helping to save the environment. What ways are there for you to be involved? Read this article for simple tips on using green energy.

Buy rechargeable batteries for all of your gadgets instead of using the disposable version. Restrain from throwing any battery in the trash. The environmental impacts of such a disposal method are not good. Save yourself some money and do the environment a favor when you recharge your batteries. Choosing rechargeable batteries over traditional types will save you a lot of money over time.

Choose a green gas source to heat your home. This type of gas has a net zero impact on changes to the climate on our planet. You can often purchase this type of gas directly from your electric company, though you will pay a premium to do so. The benefits to the environment can be worth the extra cost though, and the more people who subscribe the less expensive this option will become.

When you install a solar energy system, place the batteries close to the cells. This avoids power loss in the cable. It also lowers the possibility of shading the cable cells and lessening their output capacity.

If you are not using the lights, turn them off. Lights should only be used after dusk when they become necessary. Also remember to turn off the lights when leaving a room. If you don't need them, turn lights off, like those on your porch or in your cabinets. This will decrease energy consumption.