Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sew a Quickie Cloth Camera Strap Cover

I’m going to Blissdom. I want something to identify my new black DSLR as mine because it looks like everyone else’s black DSLR camera. I don’t want someone to accidentally pick up my precious and get weirded out about the crazy amount of dog photos on my camera's memory card. What can I say? Blitzkrieg loves the camera.

I always meant to buy a wider camera strap for my Minolta and regretted it. Its thin webbed camera strap digs into my neck – ow! My Cannon has a wider strap – yay! But it’s webbed material – boo! I suspect more digging into my neck – ow!

Hey! A cloth camera strap cover would solve both of my problems. Let's do it!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Dried Sweet Potato Dog Chew Recipe

Blitzkrieg rested comfortably after his knee surgery, well, as comfortably as you can with your leg bandaged up from your hip to your foot. He’s making very good use of the little gift basket of meat flavored baby food his dog cousins gave him for Christmas. I hide Blitzkrieg’s pain medication in a spoonful of baby food and he gobbles it up as a low calorie treat. It’s important to keep his weight consistent as his leg heals. Also, he wants to keep himself svelte for da ladies

My little dog is resilient. Three days after the surgery, he was running, climbing stairs, and jumped on the sofa with his leg in cast - all against doctor's orders. It's been a stressful time for all of us. I hate hearing Blitzkrieg whimper in pain and be frustrated that he can't be the independent dog he wants to be right now.

Yesterday Blitzkrieg got his bandages off. This surgery has pushed every fear button we all worked so hard to conquer from his abused stray days. I need to give him a positive distraction from licking his stitches before they dissolve on their own. Our favorite yuppie puppy pet store did not have dried sweet potato chews (they had no idea it was an emergency) so I made them myself – and saved a bit a cash. Yay!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

How to Buy a Mattress

Husband and I need to buy a mattress for our guest bedroom. I'd like a green mattress if possible. I also want the mattress to be comfortable.  Of course, as the saying goes not too comfortable, or my guests will never leave!

Mattress shopping is nothing short of stressful. Unlike a car, you can’t comparison shop when it comes to mattresses. There isn’t anything to stop a mattress manufacturer from making the same style of mattress and putting a different name on it for every store that sells it. In fact, it’s a common practice. The price points for the same brand of mattress sold under different names vary wildly from store to store too.

That’s why mattress stores can guarantee that you won’t find a cheaper mattress at another store and if you do, they’ll give it to you free! Because you may find the same mattress brand, you won’t find the same mattress model name in another store – the individual model names are proprietary to each store.

Mattress Shopping? Prepare to Be Screwed

It gets worse. When Husband and I were shopping for a new mattress for our bed, we found that the prices were different for the same mattresses in two chain mattress stores in the same chain.

Coil counts, and other such indicators of mattress "quality" are actually bogus talking points. All coil mattresses start with enough coils to be considered good quality. The number of turns or coils in a mattress after that doesn't make much of a different in overall quality, just personal level of comfort. Besides there are only two companies that make mattress coils and if you’re buying a coil mattress, it’s going to be the same coil quality as another maker who buys coils from that manufacturer. Of course, you won't know that because they don't - and won't - tell you that.

When it comes to buying a mattress, name brands really don’t mean much either. Often the big name brands rename and sell their mattresses as no name or as private brands too. The best advice is to pick a price range, lie down on a bunch of them, decide what you like best, and hang onto your wallet.

If you notice, just like buying a car, as soon as you look at a mattress the salesperson will “lower” the sticker price than what is advertised so it looks like you are getting a deal. Some even do that “let me talk to my manager” thing too. My advice? Buy a mattress on the last day of the month when a saleperson is willing to deal and “talk with their manager” about lowering the price a little more so the mattress moves out the door and they make their commissioned sales goal for the month. The same advice goes for buying a car.

I absolutely hate being played. And that’s what happens when it comes to buying a mattress.

Mattress Shopping is Not for the Faint Hearted

Shopping for a green mattress wasn’t any better. In fact, it was a little worse because we only found one in a local brick and mortar store to try. If I’m going to spend up to a thousand dollars on something, I want to see it in person. Especially when I don’t know what kind of mattress we like or need. The mattress we were replacing at the time was very old and so worn out that it gave us back problems.

It turns out, that for our own bed, Husband and I thought we needed a soft mattress. Depending upon the store and the mattresses we tried, we sometimes liked one tagged firm, semi-firm, or soft pillowtop the best. ARGH!

Just like using baking soda as deodorant, my brain wanted a green option and my back said, “No thank you. I need a different one.” We opted for the correct firmness for us, at a price that made us comfortable, and put an allergy ban cover on it to keep flame retardants and such at bay.

Have you purchased a new mattress? Do you think they took advantage of you?

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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Five Repurposed Home Organizers

I am organized because I’m lazy. If I have a flash of inspiration I don’t want to hunt all over the house for the things I need to make my vision come to life. That is why I live by labels. It also keeps me from putting something “in a better place” and then promptly forgetting that I moved it leading to a whole house search.

As much I love wondering the aisles of the Container Store, I’m kinda cheap green. I try to repurpose what I have before I buy. If it works, I might upgrade it.  Sometimes I don’t under the if it’s not broke don’t fix it mantra.

Wood clementine boxes are fantastic for storage! I store my tea collection in two Clementine crates in my pantry. When I want a cup of tea, it’s easy to pull all of the tea from the pantry and take my pick.

 Yes I have a lot of tea. I don't have many vices, so this will have to do.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Do You Use Cloth Panty Liners?

I’m kicking off the New Year and my January One Small Green Change in an up close and personal kind of way. So if you are any of my male relatives or current or feature employers this post is probably not for you because I’m going to talk about lady bits.

Lately I’ve had the need to wear a daily panty liner. Strangely wearing a disposable panty liner has lead to a few bladder infections. Odd, since I haven’t had any issues with disposables until now.

Going without is doable but not very comfortable ifyouknowwhatImean.

I though making cloth panty liners would be a good use for my fabric stash. I searched Craftster for patterns and emailed Crunchy Chicken a few fabric and construction questions.

Epic craft FAIL.