Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How to Make a Tabletop Cornhole Game

I build a regulation size Cornhole game for Husband’s family reunion last summer.  The game works great for home. It is too big for us to take with us in our small car if we also want to take frivolous things like food to day long summer festivals and picnics.

I drew plans for a tabletop Cornhole game.

Craftsman Blogger Summit
 Build me!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Why Does My Faucet Need Batteries?

That was the first question out of my mouth when I toured the Delta faucet headquarters as part of the Delta Faucet Company DIY 2011 blogger tour.

While the Delta Touch 2O faucets are useful when your hands are covered with paint or food goo and you don’t want ick up the handles, I just couldn’t get past it is a faucet powered by batteries. Electric and water are not good friends. Given my luck with batteries failing during multi day blackouts I had visions of the batteries dying and not being able to wash my hands.

Turns out if you ignore the indicator that the batteries need changing you can still turn on the facet with the manual handle.  The batteries last up to three years.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

My Half Year 2011 Resolutions

The wonderful women of the Green Mom’s Carnival suggested we hold a carnival on how well (or not) we are keeping our 2011 Green New Year’s Resolutions.

My resolution strategy is a bit different (of course, I march to the beat of different drummer even when hanging out with a group of women who collectively march to the beat to a different drummer. They are marching to a Samba beat. Me? I’m all over the Meringue.)

Instead of making a list of resolutions in January for the New Year I make one Small Green Change a month. That way, I’m not making resolutions just because all of the other cool kids are doing it (Trust me, the Green Moms are some of the coolest women I know!) I’m less likely to break my resolutions that way. Most of my 2011 One Small Green Changes stuck unlike making blanket resolutions in years past. If it’s not broke why fix it?

It is the half way point of my One Small Green Change year. Here’s the low down.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sew a Luggage Tag from an Conference Badge Holder

I needed to replace a few luggage tags for a plane trip. I like covered luggage tags for security reasons.

I couldn’t find a style I liked and that was unique enough to distinguish my suitcase from everyone else’s  suitcase in the airport.

Pin this tutorial for your next trip or vacation!

Blitzkrieg offered to help in the bag identification and security department. I think he was trying to get a free trip and told him he couldn't go. I hate making Blitzkrieg sad. I told him he can eat any robbers that try to break into the house while I am gone. I thought that might make up for being left behind.

 I packed the most important stuff for your trip Lisa. 
By the way, you could use a luggage tag on this suitcase.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Great American Camp Out

Growing up, every childhood vacation was a camping vacation. Sometimes it was a big out of state road trip that included stops at historical sites and museums on our way to visit family or amusement parks. We also did  long weekends at a campground close to home so my Dad could drive back and forth to work during the week.

I saw parts of the country I never would have seen otherwise because camping is an affordable way to travel – we brought our hotel room with us! I love and appreciate history because my parents snuck learning in on summer vacation. To this day, I cannot walk into an RV and not immediately conserve water and electricity because of trips where we did not have full utility hookup.

Of course, you do not need such an elaborate set up as a camper to enjoy camping or an outdoor sleep out. I made many, many sheet, chair, and tablecloth tents in the backyard as a kid. Husband and I borrowed a small tent for our first camping trip the first summer we were married. We got the special sleeping porch once during a summer family reunion. A few years ago we rented a cabin because it was easier camping with Blitzkrieg in a cabin than in our tent.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Watch Condo Blues on The Craftsman Experience This Saturday!

I had a blast teaching at The Craftsman DIY Blogger Summit.


For the part when they said oh, yeah, we're going to interview you AND tape it AND tape my first session of building a table top corn hole game without a practise run or anything.


Nerve attack!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I Got Down and Dirty with Frank Fontana


Not like THAT!

I’ll write a more detailed post on everything we did and all of the new toys tools I saw at the Craftsman DIY Blogger Summit in The Craftsman Experience later. However, if I don’t post something about the event as soon as I get home my dad and father in law might explode with curiosity! 

You don't want exploding Dads so close to Father's Day, BTW.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Compost WIN and FAIL

Last summer I made two compost bins fromRubbermaid tubs and violated the warranties on the tubs to do it 'cuz I'm Danger Girl.

I threw in a shovelful of dirt in to prime the bins and diligently added a layer of shredded paper from our paper shredder to the bin for every layer of vegetable scraps that hit the bin.

Every once and awhile I locked the handles on the compost bin and turned it end over end to mix the contents. Since I use paper for my ‘browns’ everything stuck together and required breaking it up by poking at it with a shovel before I flipped the contents to mix it.

It’s a year later. Let’s see how my Compost Experiment is doing.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

10 Gifts for Men and Women DIYers

I like to give Father’s Day gifts that appeal to my Dad’s DIY side. I would not be able to do all that I do without my father. My first DIY project was building a step stool with my Dad as a toddler so I could reach the bathroom sink and brush my teeth. I’m sure I just handed him screws or something but he said we made it. A tool belt diva was born.

Cue choir of angels singing chainsaws revving.

I put together a list of my top ten DIY Father’s Day gift ideas to help you out based on things I have and find useful, have borrowed and considered not returning, or have on my own personal wish list.

Most weekend DIYers may think wearing a tool belt is overkill. Not so! Most clothing doesn’t have large enough or strong enough pockets to hold screwdrivers, hammer, pliers, and the like when you are up on a ladder trying to do something simple that requires more than one tool. I like the Style N Craft Carpenter’s tool belt  because it is sturdy with rivet reinforcements and has plenty of pockets for tools, screws, and two hammer loops to keep your hammers from hiding or wandering around the project area.

Monday, June 6, 2011

I Built a Birdhouse. It's Kinda Insane.

I’ve been sitting on this news for so long, I’m surprised I haven’t burst by now! Craftsman tools asked me to teach a group of mom and dad bloggers how to use power tools at the Craftsman Blogger Summit this week!

Little ol’ ME!?


It’s part of my lifelong campaign to get women to stop making Honey Do lists and start making Do It Yourself Honey! lists.

Blitzkrieg thinks this is a silly goal and I should put my efforts into something nobler like world domination. *sigh* I really wish he would use his powers for good and not evil. I’m trying to teach him but it’s hard…

Enough about our family drama. You want to see my birdhouse, right?

Friday, June 3, 2011

Tom’s of Maine Simply White Toothpaste Review

This review coincides with my May One Small Green Change for the whole family to use SLS free toothpaste. Shortly after that post went live, Tom’s of Maine contacted me and asked if I would like to try a sample and review their new Simply White Fluoride Toothpaste.

OK, sure. Why not?

My first impression of Simply White was,”Hey, what’s up with the plastic toothpaste tube?” Apparently, some Tom’s customers complained that their metal toothpaste tubes are hard to use although Husband and I don't have an issue with the old tubes. Take off the cap, roll the tube from the bottom, squirt toothpaste, fight about who left the cap off the toothpaste tube on the counter - easy! 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

One Small Green Change: Reusable Glass Drinking Straw

June’s One Small Green Change is to switch to a reusable glass straw.  It’s kinda big deal because I normally go without. I got used to not using a straw during summer historical performing gigs.

Beth of My Plastic Free Life and Lisa of Retro HousewifeGoes Green both rave about their unbreakable Glass Dharma straws. I thought, “That’s cool for you and straw loving people but I can mostly do without.”

However, there are times when using a straw makes life easier (Hi super thick shake! I’m talking to you.) Straws are a disposable that I can easily replace with a reusable. It will also save me money. Therefore, I kicked myself in the tush and got a Glass Dharma reusable straw.

Husband says my straw reminds him of a chemistry pipette.