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1  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Homemade HouseCleaning on: May 22, 2009 01:58:07 PM
I'm in the process of switching from buying anything commercially made to clean my house/do laundry/unclog drains/ you know, house work related to homemade DIY type solutions. So far I'm pleased w/ my results and of course the money/plastic/chemicals I don't waste or use.  Of course there is a plethora of information available i.e. recipes for cleaning solutions and the like. 
I'm looking for more input- do you make your own household cleaners? If so what is your magic formula? 
Also I have this idea to make my own furniture wax, but I'm not all that sure about how to start experimenting. Ideally it would be a more spreadable beeswax concoction, but how do get there? the more spreadable part I mean. Any ideas?
Also- some DIY freshening (like air freshener but not as gross) ideas would be most appreciated haven't found anything I'm especially pleased with.
2  COOKING / Dessert / The money you could be saving with Geico...CAKE. on: May 12, 2009 01:49:16 PM
My son turned 4 last month & he's been entertained by Geico commercials since he could sit up. the most recent ad campaign elicits manic giggles at our house. When I asked him what kind of cake he wanted he said, "A Geico cake." At first he said he that meant the Geico logo and then it evolved into the money you could be saving with Geico. Awesome! I've been wanting an excuse to make some marshmallow fondant.  Only later did I think to make it a 4 dollar bill, since it was his fourth birthday- oh well. I'm happy with the fondant but I really need to practice my piping skills.
I hope this makes someone else as happy as the kid was!
3  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / Kenmore machine-can't even turn the wheel: not worth the repair costs? on: November 02, 2008 07:20:07 PM
I have a lovely Kenmore, almost 10 years old, model 385. Today, I though maybe it was making a slightly different noise but couldn't really hear a difference and thought maybe i was imagining it. Not long after, it stopped mid-stitch. I got it going again but only a about an inch longer and then nothing.  I couldn't even manually move the needle with the wheel.  I took the cover off to look at what wasn't moving, realized that I'm not a sewing machine mechanic and called sears. Unfortunately, the dept. i need to speak with isn't open on sunday.  Then I thought I would look online, to see if I could get either info on how I could fix it myself of more info on how big of a repair it could be. Since the only information I found advised things like cleaning the bobbin casing and what have you- I'm starting to think that maybe I could buy a new machine for what the repair will cost.
Does anyone have an advice? Or maybe links to better diy repair sites than what I found?
4  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Graham Crackers on: July 19, 2008 07:35:53 AM

These came out great! I used this recipe:
http://bakingsheet.blogspot.com/2005/04/shf-7-graham-crackers.html. Next time I want to try to substitute brown rice syrup for the honey, since I bought some and really want w/ to experiment - but I could not get that jar open.
The dough comes together really nicely

I got about 20 3 inch crackers out of this recipe

they come out of the oven a bit floppy, but crisp up nicely after they've had a chance to cool
This guy liked them and even asked for more , so I know they're kid friendly

He's a better measure of the success of a recipe since he's so picky little bunny rabbit however will eat most things, well she'll try them at least. This guy will eat only life cereal, string cheese, strawberry yogurt and pbj. I'd like to experiment w/ making these chocolate grahams in the future.
5  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / I made cheese crackers! on: July 17, 2008 03:12:55 PM
Lately I've beenthinking that I could totally make all of my kids' favortire snacks- this way i could control what they eat a lot better and probably save some money in the long run.  they looovve little cheese crackers and usually I buy the Annie's Cheddar bunnies, but @ $3 a box ( a little box that they go through in less than a week), they're not so economical.I consulted the internet for ways to make my own crackers. I'm really surprised it never occurred to me before b/c it's so easy to do- and I found a few recipes.  I sort of combined a few to come up with these-

pre baking

I meant to show you the dough but completely forgot- however I have plans to make these same crackers but instead of cheese w/ cinnamon sugar, so i might remember then.

my recipe for cheese crackers-
2 1/2 cups flour ( all purpose, but next time I"m going to use white winter wheat, I just didn't have enough this time)
3/4 cup cool water
4 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
preheat over to 425 F
combine dry ingredients and cheese, whisk to combine.  Add all of the oil and 1/3 of the water, adding another 1/3 when the previous one in combined until the water is all gone.  Knead until it comes together to nice firmish dough.  when you have a nice dough ball, divide in 1/4 ths to make it easier to manage, roll out VERY VERY thin ( i tried my best but had some thicker than i wanted, they were just a bit chewier but still fine), cut  any way you want- w/ a pizza wheel you could make regular old rectangles  or you could use a cookies cutter like I did.  the baking time will vary depending on the shape you choose ( how large or small) but they are done when they are just barely golden on the edges.  I left mine in a bit longer than i probably should have- but I don't think it made too much of a difference. All i know is- my kids asked for more, which is more than can be said for the granola bars I made.

this recipe made more than 2 pounds of these 1 inch star shapes
6  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / another vegbee peasant top on: June 24, 2008 05:24:48 AM
this isn't new, per se, but I was able to get a picutre of her in it and who doesnt love this fabric?

7  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Cherry Blossom tea towel on: June 24, 2008 05:20:33 AM
I've had this idea in my head for a long time and I'm not ashamed to say that it was inspired by Martha Stewart. I just happend to find a spare blank tea towel in my stash. Already I can think of a neater way to do it, but I like the way it turned out. 

its a little blurry here, I don't think it 's the photo- that's probably real life too. I think next time I'll carve a few potatoes long wise w/ the branch shape and stamp it, instead of using a brush. 

I'd been waiting for an apple that was a bit past it's prime...maybe I won't next time since it wasn't as firm as I wanted it to be and started to lose it's shape towards the end...
8  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / another mobile (paper cranes) on: June 24, 2008 05:07:01 AM
My daughter really needed something- but I really couldn't find anything I liked that wasnt wayyyyyy to expensive ( oh believe me , I found plenty of mobiles that I loooovved). So about an hour after purchsing some printed oragami paper- This now hangs over her bed!

9  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / ikea (sort of) hacked mobile on: June 14, 2008 05:56:51 AM
I *think* maybe this should be in toys and playthings b/c it is made from a toy - but I put it here b/c it's not meant to be played with, per se, but admired.

my friend bought these finger puppets for my kids from ikea.  I thought they were really cute, but kind of annoying since they were always scattered around and then gathered up and put somewhere where the kids couldn't get to them.  So I put them away thinking I would do something w/ them.

I wrapped embroidery floss around the inside hoop of an embroidery hoop, tied a pony bead to the end of a length of floss before threading the individual puppet on the floss.  the blue streamer things are just strips cut from a scrap of a curtain.

i love this little octopus!

this shark is really my fav. b/c it makes think of that Steve Zahn movie that came out not too long ago, about some wilderness show- they see a shark w/ all of his teeth sticking out just like this one and bust on it- it makes me giggle everytime!
anyway- the kids think its great and spend a long time ( well like 20 minutes, but that's eons when you're 3 and 18 months, right?) under it just watching the fan blow it around.
thanks for looking!
10  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / my new favorite top on: April 23, 2008 06:18:53 AM
let me preface this by saying, it's all about these shoes:

that is, I saw these shoes and knew they had to be mine.  The I set about designing the perfect outfit in my head.  I could wear them with anything really- but you know how it is- you see it in your head and nothing less will do

this is simplicity 2962
a little fabric detail- b/c I've been in love with it for a while and visited it on the Hancock's website for a while.  I actually bought from catylouquilts on esty- she rocks!

I guess it's a little blurry- but I think you get the idea.
whole outfit

hmmm...the our mirror must be much dirtier than I thought. anyway- I'm wearing these really sweet charcoal gray slim pants.  I also have this really v-necked sweater I'm re doing to wear over it if I"m chilly.
do y'all think it's fancy enough to wear to an evening wedding that specified "cocktail attire' on the invite?  I'd wear it to drink cocktails...
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