Cleaning & Organizing Tips

dry erase board. stick on dry erase board. great for learning. organizing the home

Dry erase sticker boards

Wipe off boards are so great to have! They make good chore charts. to do lists. and are even great for kids to use while learning. or even just to play! I love the large one for hanging low for preschoolers to practice writing skills.  I also think it would be a great way to do spelling words, or math problems for homework! Something different to help make learning fun.

Easy to install just peel and stick

Functional dry erase decal

Repositionable and always removable. It can be cut into smaller sheets.

Safe for walls with no sticky residues

WallPops dry erase marker included, cap has eraser on the tip

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Wallies Peel and Stick Chalkboard

Wallies Peel and Stick Chalkboard Sheet, Slate Gray, Set of 4

Chalkboard Contact Paper

Con-Tact Self-Adhesive Chalkboard Liner Just $6.99 – 18in by 6ft – Great for making your own labels #Crafty #HomeOrganization

Scotch Dry Erase Tape 6pk On Sale #Crafty

Scotch Dry EraseTape, White, 1.88-Inch x 5-Yard, 6-Pack

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backyard towel drying rack, life hacks, swimming, swim, pool, ladder, backyard organization

I was in my garage today and saw this ladder to an old loft bed that we don’t have anymore. It has been sitting in there for quite a while, and I am kind of surprised it hadn’t made its way to the thrift store or dump by now! I am sure glad it hadn’t though! Inspiration struck and my problem of a back yard pile of towels and suits was solved.

If you don’t have an old ladder, I would recommend checking craigslist, thrift stores, yard sales, or a Facebook yard sale type group. (If you aren’t in one of those, do a search for one in your town in Facebook.)

I wouldn’t recommend using a large ladder, or one that is super rickety as you will probably have a kid try to climb it and that could be bad! Look for a small size that has multiple rungs.

I plan on setting it on my patio where it is off the grass but still lets the heat dry the clothes before they get brought in to be washed.

Do you have any technique you use in the summer to keep the wet clothes at a minimum? Please share!

backyard towel rack, use an old ladder! Life hacks, backyard, organization

More tips and tricks you might like:

How to make Ice Cream In A Bag

HOW TO FREEZE STRAWBERRIES ~ 5 EASY STEPS.

GARDEN TIPS ~ USE MUFFIN TIN TO CREATE PERFECTLY SPACED HOLES FOR PLANTING

How to keep bugs out of your drink at a BBQ or picnic 

SHOE MATCHING GAME ~ HELPS KIDS GET THEIR SHOES ON THE CORRECT FOOT

HOW TO GET SHARPIE MARKER OFF YOUR SKIN ~ DIY FASTEST WAY TO REMOVE SHARPIE 

pool noodles on trampTrampoline fix for the worn out safety pad

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Make your own pour spout for spices when you up-cycle a salt bottle

Make your own pour spout for spices, by up-cycling an old salt container

Every time I make something useful out of junk that should be tossed in the trash, I giggle a little.  Why, because it proves that the apple does not fall far from the tree.  Still confused as to what I am talking about?  Well my Mom can pretty much turn anything into something useful or pretty.  So when I take something destine for the trash and re-use it, I know it got at least a little part of my Mom’s creativity.

Make your own pour spout for spices when you up-cycle a salt bottle

One way to save money is to buy your spices in bulk at WinCo in the bulk in section. Or you can can by them in a bag instead of a spice container.  If I was to buy a spice jar full of cumin it would have cost we $2-$5 depending on what brand I buy.  But this bag was less than a dollar and has 2-3 times more the spice jar had.  But leaving it in a bag is not very convenient, it tends to spill and make a mess.  Plus it does not keep the smell in very good, your whole cabinet will smell if you keep it in a bag.

Make your own pour spout for spices when you up-cycle a salt bottle

So I often put the spices in a glass jar or an empty spice jar.  But the other day as I was getting the last bit of salt out of the salt container I had and idea….. What if I put the pour spout from this empty cardboard salt container and used it as the lid for a mason jar.  If it did not work, no harm done it was destine for the trash bin anyway.

Make your own pour spout for spices when you up-cycle a salt bottle

I took the top of the mason jar, traced a circle out for the right size.  Used a sharp knife to cut it out…. popped it into the ring of the mason jar and BAM…. I had myself my very own pour spout for my cumin.  No more messy bag, no more smelly bag …. I have a easy to use pour spout!  Love it!

Make your own pour spout for spices when you up-cycle a salt bottle

You might also enjoy these recipes and tips:

How to cut a whole watermelon into cubes in just a few minutes

How to make Ice Cream In A Bag

HOW TO FREEZE STRAWBERRIES ~ 5 EASY STEPS.

GARDEN TIPS ~ USE MUFFIN TIN TO CREATE PERFECTLY SPACED HOLES FOR PLANTING

DIY - make your own popcorn in paper bag with a microwave, how to make microwave popcorn in a brown paper bag

DIY Microwave Popcorn in a paper bag

REPLACE A WORN OUT TRAMPOLINE SAFETY PAD WITH POOL NOODLES ~ EASY DIY

How to keep bugs out of your drink at a BBQ or picnic 

SHOE MATCHING GAME ~ HELPS KIDS GET THEIR SHOES ON THE CORRECT FOOT

HOW TO GET SHARPIE MARKER OFF YOUR SKIN ~ DIY FASTEST WAY TO REMOVE SHARPIE 

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organizing legos,#legos,#springcleaning, #organizing, #organizinglegos, #legostorage, #thriftyhouseholdtips

Easy, Thrifty Lego Storage

It started out innocently enough, kids love legos, so a bucket of them seemed like the perfect gift idea.  Then they requested sets for other holidays and birthdays.  Before I knew it we had a small tote full.  So full that rummaging through them was next to impossible and playing with them was a chore instead of a creative, fun time!

organizing legos, #legos,#springcleaning, #organizing, #organizinglegos, #legostorage, #thriftyhouseholdtips

I researched different ways to store them, and while I loved some of them, they weren’t practical or thrifty!  I decided on plan b; get some empty plastic shoe boxes and let each color have it’s own box.  So far it has worked great!  All 3 of my kids have spent a couple of hours on the floor creating various masterpieces.  So much better than asking to watch tv or play a video game!

organizing legos,#legos, #springcleaning, #organizing, #organizinglegos, #legostorage, #thriftyhouseholdtips

I started with 10 boxes to be safe.  I had one for each color.  As I finished organizing them, I discovered that there weren’t enough of some of the colors to need their own box.  I ended up mixing the blue and purple and the yellow, red and orange.  Apparently we have an over abundance of grey and we may have to divide it in half (thanks to the obsession for the Star Wars sets).

organizing legos, #springcleaning, #legos,#organizing, #organizinglegos, #legostorage, #thriftyhouseholdtips

I admit that I enjoyed it at first, I have a thing for organizing and with a family haven’t been able to keep things the way I would’ve in the past.  So this gave me a chance to rekindle that obsession, hobby.  If you don’t enjoy that type of thing, or even if you do, what a great way to spend some time with your kids while you let them help divide the colors into their boxes!  Finish up by labeling your boxes so that they are easy to see which one you need.  I cut labels out of vinyl in a Lego brix font I believe I got from dafont.com.  You could easily do it in different colors of vinyl to match the color in the box, or even in the coordinating color of permanent marker.

organizing legos, #legos, #springcleaning, #organizing, #organizinglegos, #legostorage, #thriftyhouseholdtips

You might like these deals too…

Brick Building Play Mat - Rollable, Two Sided Silicone Mat - Works with LEGO and Duplo - A Thrifty MomBrick Building Play Mat – Rollable, Two Sided Silicone Mat – Works with LEGO and Duplo ~ SO COOL!!

LEGO mini figuresMinifigures 10 pk just $5.29 & FREE Shipping ~ LEGO Compatible

LEGO Star Wars Republic Gunship #LEGO #GifForKids #StarWarsStar Wars LEGO Sets All Under $10.00 #LEGO #GiftForKids #StarWars

LEGO coffee mugBuild-On Brick Mug – BPA-free 12oz Coffee Mug

LEGO cake brownie mold panBuilding Brick Mini Cake Mold

Mega Brick Silicone Candy Mold-Ice Cube Tray - Lego Figures and BricksMega Brick Silicone Candy Mold-Ice Cube Tray – Lego Figures and Bricks 2pk On Sale Just $6.90!

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10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, sewing, tips and tricks, lifehacks, sewing machine, sewing supplies

10 Must Have Supplies For Learning To Sew On A Machine

For my first Christmas married (many, many years ago;)) my husband gave me a sewing machine.  I thought he had lost his mind.  I had never sewed other than the occasional button or since high school home economics class. I was terrified of that machine and didn’t want to get to know it because I was afraid of how bad I would do. Thanks to some help from my husband (thank goodness his Mom had shown him a little bit of sewing) and my mother in law, I love sewing now!  I would definitely not call me an expert, but I can sew things for my home and have even done some clothing for my daughter.  It has probably been one of the best gifts I have ever received.

My point is, if you are new to sewing, there is nothing to be afraid of!  It is relatively easy.  And, thanks to the internet, there are so many awesome tutorials and help available that there is no reason not to try!

These are the top 10 things that I use every time I sew, that are definitely something you want to have in your sewing box!

1. A good machine. Seriously.  Don’t waste your time or money on a cheap beginner machine.  My daughter was given one for her birthday one year and it didn’t work for more then a couple of stitches at a time.  Get a basic, real machine.  It will last for years and as long as you aren’t sewing quilts or denim, a basic yet good machine should be more then fine for learning.  Too complicated or expensive comes with so many options that it makes it hard to choose and gives you more choices then you need as a beginner.  *This one is similar to the one that I have.  It has been going strong for 14 years now, and works great!  This is quite inexpensive and has great reviews!

2. Good thread.  I have a lot of thread, some of it is older than I am and was my grandmothers.  I don’t use it a lot, but it is good quality thread, and much better than the cheap junk I have gotten at Walmart.  I have found that some machines don’t like the super cheap thread either.  Don’t spend a lot on it, but it is worth it to get a little better thread than have your stitches break off and have to sew it again anyway, right? I truly don’t know which kind of thread is the best, as I am thrifty and don’t like to spend a lot.  That unfortunately, is how I learned that not all thread is created equal!

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, tips and tricks,learning, sewing, lifehacks, sewing machine, sewing supplies

3. Seam ripper.  Unfortunately, my seam ripper and I are close.  I wish I could say I only used it on occasion, but I can’t.  I have to pick stitches a lot.  Pretty much every time I sew.  It seems like I am great at messing up and not so great at sewing a straight line.  Your seam ripper can save you a lot of time.  Do yourself a favor and get one you can hold comfortably.

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, tips and tricks, sewing,  sewing supplies, lifehacks, sewing machine,

4. Extra bobbins.  You should get a couple with your machine, but unless you want to have to remove thread off your bobbin to change it with another color, get extra so you can have one for any color you might need.  While you are at it, get something to store the bobbins in to help keep them from tangling. They come in metal and plastic.  I have both and find them equal.

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, sewing, lifehacks, tips and tricks, sewing machine, sewing supplies

5. Straight Pins are a must!  They are something you absolutely should use, when you are beginning and even after if you have issues with keeping things straight like yours truly does. Pinning can be the difference in a project coming out great or having to be picked and done over.

6. Paper clip HolderYes, you read that right.  This is such a great way to keep your pins by your side ready to be used!  They are magnetic and keep the pins from going everywhere.  With a little shake, the pins are right at the top ready to be grabbed without you having to stab yourself by reaching into the box to grab them.  They are super inexpensive, and quite possibly the best sewing trick I have ever used!

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, tips and tricks, sewing, lifehacks, sewing supplies, sewing machine,

7. Measuring TapeYou are going to want to measure twice cut once.  Fabric can be expensive and it is an awful feeling when you cut and then realize that you weren’t right on measurements.  Be sure to keep your measuring tape nearby to keep track of your seam allowances and hems too.  This helps insure that your product comes out looking like it wasn’t sewn by a preschooler.

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, learning, tips and tricks, sewing, lifehacks, sewing machine, sewing supplies

8. Scissors. Don’t use the same scissors that you use for cutting paper. It dulls them out and when you are cutting fabric you want those babies to be as sharp as possible to get the cleanest cut.  I have my grandmother’s sewing scissors because I just happen to be the only left handed grandchild that was interested.  They are old, but they work great and outdo my newer pair even!  If you are serious about sewing, invest in a good pair.  If this is just an occasional hobby, no need to shell out big bucks, basic sewing scissors will do.  If you aren’t the only one that will be near the fabric scissors, consider marking them in some way so that no one mistakes them for paper scissors.  I have a friend who has a tiny scrap of fabric that she ties around the handle of hers to let everyone know they are for fabric. Great idea!

10 must have supplies for learning to sew on a machine, lifehacks, sewing, tips and tricks, sewing machine, sewing supplies

9. Fabric scraps to practice on.  Either get a cut of inexpensive material, or ask around, someone is bound to have small amounts they don’t mind parting with to help you get the experience you need.  Sometimes, even now, if I am trying out a new stitch or am changing my dial to different settings I will try it out on scrap fabric first so that I don’t risk messing up and having to pick another thread.

And finally, 10. Iron and Ironing board. I hate ironing, like most of us do, but this is a must.  When I started out I didn’t realize just how much I would be ironing and how important this step was.  Not only does it help give you crisp, clean lines, it also helps you use less straight pins if your project has the seam allowance ironed down to help you follow it.  You may think you can escape this step, but trust me, your final product will turn out so much better if you take the extra time to iron your work!

So what do you think?  Are you an experienced seamstress? Are there any you agree/ disagree with?  Anything you would add?  Tell us in the comments!

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keeping track of your child's medicine doses, #medicine, #sick, #antibiotic, #child, #parenting, #medicinesafety

Keeping Track of Your Child’s Medicine Doses~ Good Advice During the Winter Season

I love pretty much everything about Fall and Winter.  I think I can count on one hand the things I dislike about the cold months; heating bills, icy roads, and kids getting sick every time you turn around.  Honestly, with multiple kids it sometimes feels like someone in our home is sick constantly the whole season!  Don’t get me wrong, I feel blessed that they are small illnesses.  Colds, ear infections and sinus infections mostly.  But with our hectic life, and sometimes multiple children on medicine at the same time, it is easy to lose track of whether or not someone got their dose that morning/evening.  And then if you add 2 parents in there, what if one of us gives the medicine not realizing that the other one already gave it to them?

Here is the solution: Use a sharpie, or put a small label on the bottle of the medicine.  I tried the Sharpie, but with the red bottle, I didn’t feel like my oldish sharpie was dark enough. My son is taking his medicine for 10 days 2 times a day starting on the 12th.  I made 2 columns, one for am and one for pm and listed the dates down the side.  Now my husband and I can keep track of  when we gave him his medicine to make sure neither of us are double dosing him and that the child is actually getting all of the doses of the medicine so it can be most effective.

keeping track of your child's medicine doses, #medicine, #sick, #antibiotic, #child, #parenting, #medicinesafety, #chart

You might also enjoy these recipes and tips:

How to cut a whole watermelon into cubes in just a few minutes

How to make Ice Cream In A Bag

HOW TO FREEZE STRAWBERRIES ~ 5 EASY STEPS.

GARDEN TIPS ~ USE MUFFIN TIN TO CREATE PERFECTLY SPACED HOLES FOR PLANTING

DIY - make your own popcorn in paper bag with a microwave, how to make microwave popcorn in a brown paper bagDIY Microwave Popcorn in a paper bag

REPLACE A WORN OUT TRAMPOLINE SAFETY PAD WITH POOL NOODLES ~ EASY DIY

How to keep bugs out of your drink at a BBQ or picnic 

SHOE MATCHING GAME ~ HELPS KIDS GET THEIR SHOES ON THE CORRECT FOOT

HOW TO GET SHARPIE MARKER OFF YOUR SKIN ~ DIY FASTEST WAY TO REMOVE SHARPIE 

Disclaimer: This post may or may not contain affiliate links.
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