[VIDEO] A Kitty Climbing Wall

You might want to call me a “crazy cat lady,” and you probably wouldn’t be too far off. I love my Mia. She’s a great companion. I work from home and she keeps me company. I was very lonely before we got her 3 years ago. With hubby working till 5pm every day, I spent my days working as well, but missing having someone to talk to…or just be around. I usually had the TV on just to hear voices and feel less alone. But then my DD suggested I get a cat. I’ve always had a cat, but when we moved to Wisconsin, I decided not to get one because I had a couple of kids who were allergic, which one of them was this DD that suggested I get one – she felt my pain. The one son who is allergic doesn’t visit often, and for the other, … Read more

Fab Fall Projects & Blog Hop 2015

A Fall Front Yard & Deck Project You Too Can Do!   NOTE: This post is from 2015. It is now 2022 and looking back, I am so thankful I decided to learn about landscaping and curb appeal. I hope this will encourage you to do the same.   We bought our house a few years ago and it was in a shambles. The yard looked like it was a backwoods farm that hadn’t been touched in years. Here are before pictures of our house just before we bought it. It was pretty sad looking.     The front was nondescript with overgrown greenery and stones full of dirt and dried up greenery. After a year of not addressing the stones in front, tons of weeds took root and made it look even shabbier.  I did manage to put up the heart my son, Andrew, bought for me years ago. … Read more

Typesetter’s Drawer Upcycle – Essential Oils Decorative Rack

We found this typesetter’s drawer for just a few dollars about 6 years ago and just never did anything with it…until last week. I have a challenge in my Blueprint member’s group that consists of 3 things: Clean up/organize your workshop. Make your workshop pretty. Do something special for yourself. I’m joining my members in the challenge and I’m: Cleaning up my office (workshop already done) Making my office pretty Cleaned up the typesetter’s drawer, stained and mounted it on the wall  of my master bedroom hallway.   Here is the “BEFORE” of the typesetter drawer: We decided to take it to the car wash and spray it down – normally you have to be very careful when getting water on old wood because it could warp. But I decided it was worth the risk since it looked like the back had already been exposed to moisture (rippled). Besides, I … Read more

Counter Top Cleaning Solutions

The 5 Types of Kitchen Countertops and Their Homemade Cleaning Solutions Aside from the living room, your kitchen is the most important part of your home. You probably spend most of your time cooking in it, preparing food on the kitchen island, and enjoying your food at the farmhouse table. Since food is prepared and cooked in the kitchen, it’s essential that you keep this space in your home clean and sanitized. People come and go in the kitchen and, because of this, there’s a great chance that it will become a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. The most critical part of the kitchen for bacteria growth is your kitchen countertop. As such, you should know about the various natural cleaning solutions for different types of kitchen countertop materials. You can read on below for that purpose. Granite Countertops You should avoid using lemon, vinegar, acidic cleaners, and any … Read more

Homemade Apple Pie Filling and Applesauce

HOMEMADE APPLE PIE FILLING   This is an oldie but goodie – I’ve brought it back since fall is here and it’s time to do some canning…   Apples. Apples. AAAppples!!!! I mentioned in a recent post that I was spending hours cutting up apples a neighbor gave us for applesauce and apple pie filling to put in our freezer. Here’s a quick recap in case you are looking at two or three bags of apples and don’t know what to do with them. First I cut up a bunch into cubes with skins on and threw them into sandwich baggies for the freezer. Rather than using lemon juice to keep them from browning, I soaked them in salt water as I cut them up instead. I had read on Pinterest that someone had tried it and it worked so I tried it – besides, it was cheaper and easier. … Read more

DIY Tomato Cages and Gardening Tips {Love My DIY Home}

DIY Tomato Cages – Save the Maters!

It’s TOMATO GROWING TIME!   We made our own tomato cages …because those tomato cages you buy at Menards are so stinkin’ expensive! We started out with the skinny wire ones that were left in the garden by the previous owners. FAIL. Then we graduated on to the heavy duty ones – but only bought two – $8 each is crazy, don’t you think? In my uber-frugal mind that is a FAIL. When you have 50+ tomato plants there is no way you can justify $400 for cages. No way. We’d already put a grand into our new garden so there was no way we would put out another $400 for cages. So we made our own…out of concrete reinforcing mesh. We cut up a big roll of the mesh and made about 35 of them.     We attempted to spray paint them, but decided not to use up … Read more

A Furniture Artisan and Videographer in the Making – 12 Year Old Isaac

A Furniture Artisan in the Making – 12 Year Old Isaac Does that sound like a title full of hype? It's all true and I'm as amazed as I promise you will be. Just keep reading…   My 12 year old grandson, Isaac, helped me put together a furniture re-design video course for kids, Creative Kids Furniture Art, by demonstrating each step – all by himself – and he did a mighty fine job to boot.   Let's Start at the Very Beginning, a Very Nice Place to Start… We set up my tripod, added my IPhone to record, and I told him what to do and he did it – start to finish.   What did he do? I had a set of matching accent tables that we bought off a FB BST site. I told him how to prep, paint and create art on the top to flip … Read more

Wicker File Cabinet Re-purposed to a Paint Cart

Here is a quick example of how you can re-purpose those garage sale finds inexpensively and easily. No muss. No fuss. Just a can of spray paint, black glaze and a sponge paint brush turned this wicker file cabinet into something useful. Wicker isn’t very popular any more and you will find wicker everything out in garage sales for just a dollar or two. I bought this one at a garage sale for $2 this summer. STEP #1 Spray with Rustoleum Painters Touch spray paint. Pick a color, any color. STEP #2 Dab, wipe or brush on glaze – all over, including the metal bars. I used Wise Owl black glaze using a sponge brush. You can use a regular sponge, brush or even a paper towel. Just use what you have on hand. No need to be particular, just have at it! I took about 30 seconds to brush … Read more

Gardening Tip – Mulching the Garden with Straw

We got a very late start in gardening – when we were in Michigan and raising kids, we tried raising a garden. I still remember that photo that we took of the one lone ear of corn. The ground was apparently empty of neutrients because nothing grew – N.O.T.H.I.N.G. Of course, it didn’t help that we had no idea what we were doing. But three years ago we bought a house on an acre of land in Wisconsin that had an old overgrown fenced in garden with grape vines along one side. We tripled it in size last year and have been working on improving the soil.  Why Mulch With Straw? 1. The straw helps keep the moisture from evaporating rapidly from the soil in the heat. 2. The straw helps keep the weeds at bay by limiting the sun exposure to the weed seeds. 3. When the straw decomposes, … Read more

DIY Pot Rack – Pendant Lights or Industrial Wood?

Caution: This is a really looonnng post – first the background story of a win/loss/win, 2 sets of before and afters and a detailed description of the final DIY project! It all started with a giveaway… I Won a Pendant Light! Back in January C.D. Loken at CD’s Country Living had a giveaway and I won: “In honor of CD’s Country Living’s blogging anniversary, Parrot Uncle generously agreed to send one lucky winner this LARGE (18.11 x 9.06) Retro-Industrial Light with Pot cover shade ($45 value)!” Best Laid Plans Today I can finally tell you about it. It was a long time in coming… Parrot Uncle asked me if I’d like to have a second pendant light for my kitchen to go along with the one I won in CD’s giveaway. After a few back and forth emails, we settled on the pair of lights that were just like C.D.s … Read more