Thursday, August 22, 2013

Tutorial on cleaning a bathtub drain

You’re standing in the shower up to your ankles in water.  After your shower or bath the tub takes F-o-r-e-v-e-r to drain or maybe there’s a funky smell in your shower that you just can’t narrow in on, and even after you clean the bathroom your nose says something still isn’t right.  Your drain has become slow and you might be thinking you need to pick up a bottle of drain-o or maybe even call in a plumber.  But wait!  Before you waste any money on this problem, why not give it a shot at fixing the problem yourself- for FREE!!  It’s not difficult, although it might be a little gross.  Some of you will find great satisfaction  in doing this.  I kinda do.
Here are the tools you will need to do the job. A screwdriver (depending on your drain you may need a phillips head instead of a flat head), A pair of skinny pliers, some baking soda(mine is from Target, and you’ve never bought your baking soda at Target, you should, the Market Pantry brand is super cheap, like .29 cents), some vinegar, and a few paper towels. 

Begin by looking at your drain.  Your plug might look different than mine, but they all pretty much are the same in that they unscrew, and then have a screw underneath  that you can remove. I start by removing the top part, that says push on it.  I simply unscrew it with my hand.
Under that it looked like this.
I put a screwdriver in and removed the insert.
Under that you will generally see a +, you may not be able to see it if there is a lot of hair built up.  This + is the  reason that hair gets caught up.  I am doing my teenage daughter’s drain today and she has really long hair.  Long hair means she uses lots of shampoo and conditioner.  Using lots of shampoo and conditioner causes a build up of gunk in the drain, along with a bunch of hair washing down together, and it’s no wonder that the water can no longer get down the drain!  Now comes the gross part.  I’m not going to lie, sometimes the hair, soap, and conditioners smell really bad when you pull them out.  They’re starting to rot. Put your paper towels down in the tub along side of the drain, and pick up your pliers.  Insert them into the drain and pinch and then pull up.  You should come up with a clump of hair.  Make a face and put it in the paper towel.  Continue doing this until the drain looks clear.  I sometimes use a combination of the screwdriver and the pliers if I can’t reach all the hair, and if you don’t have skinny pliers, you may be able to just use your screwdriver, but the pliers are easier.
Here is the grossness that I got today.

Puke right??  The sad part is I did this less than six months ago.  It’s not really anyone’s fault and has nothing to do with how clean you are or how often you clean your tub.  It just accumulates where no one can see it , and until the drain starts having trouble, you don’t really think about it. 
Moving on. . .
The next thing I do is just a great maintenance item.  I pour about a half cup of baking soda down the drain, and then pour in vinegar until it bubbles up to the top of the drain.  I leave that for about 15 minutes, and then pour really hot water (not quite to boiling) down the drain.  This will help disinfect the drain and clean it too.  That’s all there is, now reassemble your plug in reverse of what you needed to do to get it apart. 
Now turn on your water and watch it go down the drain beautifully.  Pat yourself on the back because you just save yourself some money, and by the way, Drain-o won’t clear up this type of problem anyway, it’s not a clog stuck in the drain, it’s stuck on that little + .
I know this is a little gross and if you don’t have the stomach for it, ask your hubby to give it a try before you call someone!
Now the next time your drain runs slow, you will know just what to do.  Hope you found this helpful!  I appreciate you stopping by.


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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Pallet Sign–All American Star

 pallet star a
Summer is winding down.  I can’t believe how quickly it came and went this year! Weird, wet and cool weather weather dominated around here.  I am hoping for a beautiful Fall to make up for it.  My husband had an idea to make a pallet sign this weekend while it was actually nice out.  After some brainstorming he came up with an idea to use some of our barbed wire we had picked up this spring at a  barn.  I love how the signed turned out, and really the toughest part was getting those gosh darn pallets apart!  Man, it’s like they make them to hold really heavy things or something!  After some trial and error, we came up with a good method using a brick,a cinder block, and some muscle to get them apart.

To begin we started by painting half of the slats in a watered down red and the other half in a watered down white.  Then I made a star stencil to use as our guide.

pallet star Collage 
Carefully, we bent the barbed wire around the cut-out and nailed it in place as we went. 
And that was it!  The sign is going to hang in our barn inspired basement. I really love the rustic appeal it has. 
      pallet star b
pallet star a
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Thursday, August 1, 2013

21 Dazzling DIY Bedding ideas

Bedding can really make or break a room.  The problem is that it can also make or break a bank account too!  There are so many layers to a bed, and really everyone of them is important, from the mattress protector, up to those cute throw pillows, you want to make sure they are comfortable and practical. You need to ask yourself, do I really want to pick up 9 throw pillows, 2 shams, and 4 pillows every morning when you make the bed?  If your answer is yes, then go for it!  If not, you might want to consider a cleaner less fussy look.  After all, it’s your bedroom and it needs to work for you.
Realizing that you can spend a fortune on bedding (and yes it will look like it), but there are also so many DIY ways to make your bedroom your own.  The possibilities are endless as your imagination.  That’s why I was so excited when  @HOMETALK ask me to curate a DIY Bedding idea board for their site.  Click on the picture below to be taken to my board.  There are ideas for re-making a bed skirt that is too small for your current bed, re-purposing old Vintage pillow cases as lamp shades, making pillow cases and curtains from linen towels, using dropcloth for curtains or a bedskirt, and of course a few ideas for those DIY throw pillows you will be picking up every morning.  Plus there are lots of other ideas that can help to cut the cost of decorating your bedroom. 
I was particularly excited to see the post on the drop cloth curtains with the fabric top.  It’s so similar to what I did in my own bedroom, except I was lucky enough to find valances at Target that someone had returned from an on-line purchase marked at 75% off.  Along with some curtains I had bought at #Home Goods, I cut the valances down the center and then had them sewed along the top to create a very custom curtain, all at the beautiful price of $160 (including the seamstress costs).  Did I mention that is for 3 windows or 6 curtain panels!!
  source            DSCN3494
The stencil ideas are also great because, with stenciling so popular, you can really customized any thing you can think of.  Take plain sheets and make them custom, cheap curtains from Ikea can become a show stopper with stencils, and you can choose the perfect color, which isn’t the case with store bought options.  Pillows are easy and great to stencil, and even a plain duvet or comforter can be made your own.  I hope my board gives you some inspiration to try a DIY in your room!
          DIY bedding
Once again, Thanks for stopping by!  Enjoy your day!

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