Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tuesdays Notes-Out of the Ordinary Stuff.

So Today I heard a question....Do you smell your dogs paws? It is said that they smell like Popcorn or Chips! One lady said her dog's feet smell like Doritos.
Well The guy said , dogs feet are a prefect ground for Bacteria to grow and that smell is the dog body defense to fight the bacteria. Or for a better term.. It's the Bacteria breeding on your dog paws.
However the real answer is:
"Dogs also have sweat glands on the pads of their paws and on their noses that help keep these moist and functioning properly, the eccrine glands. On the paw pads, natural micro-organisms living in the surface layers contribute to the typical odor of dog paw pads, which is a little like the odor of Cheese puff snacks! This odor is much more noticeable on dogs with moist paw pads than on those with dry pads."
This is according to Veterinary Partner. so now when you smell that Frito's, Corn chip, Popcorn , Doritos or cheese puff Paws you know why.
Did you hear something out of the ordinary this week?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Summer and the Pool.

We have been working on the pool and trying to get it opened. A few years back we purchased a solar heater . Hooking it up is not an easy task. I have decided to look for a new type. Keeping in mind it must be Solar powered. Normally we do not need to heat the pool. With the temp we have been having lately the water should heat up nicely. for now ....Just think of it as an Atlantic Ocean swim. You Know the temp is cold at first then the body gets use to it. I would think that the temp will get to about 80 and maintain that for the summer. However the temp is pretty cold right now, about in the upper 70's. No one wants to get in it. Well off to search for a better Solar solution for the pools heat.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Social Parade- Vintage Sewing Room

Smart and Trendy Moms

Ever wanted to promote your blog and have some new visitors and commenter? Well here it is a Blog hop for Fridays. Each Friday just link your Post to "Smart and Trendy Moms". Join in on visiting and commenting on other bloggers. They will visit you and follow your blog commenting when appropriate. I will join this New blog hop. Why not give it a try.

You know I have been working on a New Vintage Sewing Room. Transferring the item from the Dungeon to the Bright vintage Sewing shop, has been a task! Going to my Dad's has put me back a little but I enjoy being with him. Now that my cast is off therapy has started. I am looking forward to using the arm to its' fullest. Although it has not stop my work on the Room/shop.
Here is a look at the room as it is today.

Want to see the progress of this VSR room. Click on the Auntie E's Vintage Sewing Room icon on the side bar.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

AF Question---On the Go Again

Oh yes I posted late, you see I was on the go again!!
With Father's Day this weekend, I decided to go spend time with My Dad. So off I went to Virginia Beach by Myself! Yes I left the hubby and daughter back home. The drive was not bad, I left early in the morning around 6am and arrived about 10am. Noticed that the traffic was lighter than usual. My baby brother and I are taking dad out Sunday for a Father's Day Brunch/Cookout.
Here's a question for you;

Do you celebrate Father's day? If so, what are your Plans?

Check out An Island Life for more AF Question Links.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

My Vintage Sewing Room Project.

So now the closet is in and the room is nearing completion. I was really surprised and pleased with the closet install. We chose Closet America for the closet. Our Designer came to the home and we design the closet to meet my needs. Seeing that it is a Sewing room, I needed drawers for Cloth, thread, and other notions. A hanging area for long things and a Pull out Butler Valet bar. Jeff installed the closet in about 3 hours and it went very smooth. He totally cleaned up when finished. We really love the workmanship of the built-in, it is made in America and locally for us. The hardware is of German made, that is the best in our eyes. The closet took about 53% of the budget, however that is the key to a neat sewing room. We need a place for everything.

click on each photo to enlarge.. for a closer view.

as you can see the fronts of the drawers have a running grain match.
I really love that.
click to enlarge, for closer view.

Hubby and I fell in love with Self closing drawers some time ago. So, we had to have them in this closet. It is standard with Closet America, so no added expense there.
hear the quietness of the close.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Busy Time

Well this will be a busy day and week. I am off to finish the trimming in the Vintage Sewing Room (VSR), finishing laundry for this weekend trip, and cleaning the house.
I will be going to my Dads for Father's Day, so I need to make reservations for dinner there and make sure I finish some sewing that needs to be done. I am going by myself to Dads, looking forward to the time with him.
Tomorrow the Closet folks will be installing the Closet design we have chosen. All of it was specially made for my VSR closet needs. We need to make sure the closet is reading for them to do their work. It looks like we will make the target date on the completion of the VSR. Still under budget and loving that!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Got Evidence-Products used the home

Automatic Dishwasher Detergent is used in most American homes. It has been a hand saving invention since the sixties for us Dishwashers. Is it a good thing? One would think so, huh. Over the years the detergents have gotten better at cleaning without rinsing first. Let's look at some household cleaner ingredients and see how these can effect our home environmental air and health.
When My Mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, we started asking questions. How does one get this? My Mothers always wanted to know the Whys of things. Interesting we found out that the research tended to believe that this Deadliest Cancer to women is caused by the environment. So what in our environment could cause this? The search for answers continued.
I found out that most of the products we use in our household to clean, had Carcinogenics products in them. In the next few weeks we will be looking at a few of them. Got Evidence will look at some product we use and see if they are healthy to our environment. Have the companies changed over the years to the good or are they still using Carcinogenics in their products. So come along with me in the search for those healthier Household cleaners.

Did you know that dishwashers ingredients can emit Cancer Causing Vapors in the drying cycle? I found this out a few years ago. Here is some brief info on one of the brands.

Acute Health Effects: From MSDS Route(s) of Entry: Ingestion, eye contact, inhalation, skin contact. Health Hazards (Acute and Chronic): Ingestion may cause
moderate transient gastrointestinal irritation. Heavy or prolonged exposure to breathing dust may cause transient respiratory tract irritation. Prolonged skin contact with undiluted product may result in irritation. Signs and Symptoms of Exposure: Ingestion may result in nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea. Eye contact may cause stinging, tearing, itching, swelling and/or redness. Inhalation may cause coughing, sore throat, wheezing or transitory shortness of breath. Prolonged skin contact may result in redness, itching and irritation. Medical Conditions Generally Aggravated by Exposure: Pre-existing dermatitis conditions may be aggravated by prolonged contact with the product.
Chronic Health Effects: From MSDS Heavy or prolonged exposure to breathing dust may cause transient respiratory tract irritation. Prolonged skin contact with undiluted product may result in irritation.
Carcinogenicity: The manufacturer's Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) does not state whether the ingredients are considered carcinogens or potential carcinogens.

This is just on one product I used on a regular basis. I considered it the best in dishwasher products. I will speak more about this in the next few days. so off for more research to share with you. Working toward a Healthier home environment for all.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

On the Go Again

Well we are on our way to the Eastern shore of Maryland. A little sightseeing today. Be sure to check in at Auntie E's on the Go, blog. I will be posting some real time photos. I hope the sun will play along today.
You can click on the icon to the right to go to the blog. See you there around noon today.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Aloha Friday -Summer Projects

Summer will be here on the 21st of June. Our spring project (Vintage Sewing Room) will be finished by then and the summer ones will begin. We are in the process of preparing for the Shed cleaning out. Got a new one just for the Yard and Gardening stuff. So we will be collecting the items from the Work shed and Pool Shed. Organizing is the tool for being clean and Green. Been thinking about selling some things, so here is my question for you.

What is the best way to Sell used things? Is it by Yard sale, Ebay, Craig list, Newspaper or do you have another way?

Don't forget to check out An Island Life for more Aloha Friday questions. Kailani would love for you the stop by and link your Friday question. It's a lay back day in Hawaii, Let's Surf! no I'm not in Hawaii, but boy can I surf the net! There are some great surfer buddies out there.

Thursday, June 10, 2010


We have been busy completing the Vintage Sewing Room. Finally installed the Mirror Doors, they were easier then we believed. I think Hubby and I were more concern with them breaking and the tracks being in-lined. We went with a Triple Mirrored closet door, mostly because of the design of closet drawers and hanger sections. Looking for Affordable ones was hard. The first one I found was in the thousands. All the others online were in the same ballpark. I started to rethink the Mirrored doors. Started looked at the regular closet doors in Triple at the home improvements centers. While there I just kept walking back to the Mirrored Closet Doors. Then I thought why not get a price for a Triple here, if they sale them that way. It would be a special order, and I know how that goes on Price. After checking on them, they were only a Fraction of the online cost. So for only 555 dollars we were able to order the Doors I so wanted. Was still able to stay within my budget!

As for the easiness in installing them, our thoughts were unfounded. Once we picked up the doors the thought was what did we get ourselves into. Our fear of breaking the mirror was calmed. Putting up the head and bottom rails were easy. The Doors were light and very simple to click into the track. There are many companies out there, we order from King Star.

The one negative about the install was the instructions. They were not user friendly, very hard to figure out. Most of the instruction referred to figure photos, which were not clearly marked or detailed. We were missing some hardware, therefore had to work with what we had. It wasn't hard once we figured out the process of the install. I feel the company could do a better job on their instructions. They must think no one reads them. Only the men don't read instruction, us women tend to look over them before the project. Maybe women need to write the instruction. I think I might suggest that to the company.

Some other factors to keep in mind were the track. We needed to have a triple track. In order for the doors to work for our closet layout we needed the opening flexibility. Measured to make sure we had enough head space to install the header. For the floor track install we pre-drilled the screw holes, as our bamboo flooring is very hard wood. The doors weight is on the floor track.However the weight is so light that it is fine for the floating bamboo floor. Top rack it just a guide for the doors.
We are very pleased with the Mirror doors. We did not have any full length mirrors in the home so this will be a great addition.

Monday, June 7, 2010

VSR-Mural Completed

Monica from Monica's Painterly Designs has completed the Mural.We meet at a Home-show fair , was impressed with her work. The thought came to me to have her do something in my Vintage Sewing Room project. Thinking through the idea I came up with a store front. My Granny (my Fathers Mother) worked as a Seamstress out of her home. They had a room added on the house for her business. She did alterations mostly, however she love to make things for us kids. I have a lot of her tools, material and items. throughout my life when we would visit I remember watching her work. Received a little sewing machine from her as a child, I remember sewing doll clothes on it. Years later while in High School, one of my classes was Sewing. Made a Plaid Cape as one of my class project, the teacher thought I was a little odd. She stated that plaid was the most difficult fabric to work with. Little did she know I love to sew and had the skill in my Genes! The Coat came out perfect and I received an A.
For my whole life I have dreamed of a Sewing Room. Now it is finally happening. This Store Front Mural is what I think my Granny would of loved to have.

Granny's home was Brick built in the 1950's. She would sit at the window sewing on her machine . Always seeing who was coming up to the home. Grandpa loved his garden, he would be out tending the plants. What is more fitting then to have a market with all the things he loved to grow. Tommy was so funny. My Mom loved parks, she would take my brother and I to one near by. Mom also visited Granny a lot, Granny would do some alterations for her. Granny lived on Springfield Ave and Mom was born in Berkley, Virginia. All these elements are in the Mural. Although the house is gone and Moms birth town is but a speck, each time I will go into the Sewing room, my memories of great life and times will be there. I might even be inspired from my Granny's spirit to try some new things.

In progress collage.
(you can click on the photos to enlarge)

The finished Green Mural project.
all the paints used were No or Low VOCs

We just picked up the Mirror Closet doors..Our next step to install them.
Interested in a mural for your room? Call Monica's Painterly Designs for an appointment.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Going Green together- Monthly Updates.

So we are doing well with our solar power. Feeding the grid and using what we need. Our Utility bill was closer to 104.00 this month. That means it is going down. We haven't seen that low of a bill at all the whole time we have lived here. Mr sun is still shining on us. Our lifetime production since we started in November 2009 is 3,669 KwH. Our highest production amount in a day was 36.46 kwh. We are at present time supplying about 1/2 our power by solar.We have reduced the Carbon footprint by 3,086 pounds of CO2. Planted 68 tree seedlings. and saved the air pollution and oil consumption the equivalent of driving a standard car 6,031 miles. Not bad huh?
As for the Green bag issue... doing well on that. A few times we had to take plastic bags, however we are recycling those.
Our Rain Barrels are filled and we are using the water. Our water bill comes in quarterly so I will not be able to tell how much an impact they are for a few months.
The house Green project is coming along great. We are almost done. Our complete date is set for June the 20th. Still Under budget and loving that! Stay tune for the final photos.
We are looking into getting a thermal solar unit for our Hotwater, that should reduce our dependency on the Electric company greatly. Since heating water is a costly item.
Still looking for ways to become more independent and self sufficient by retirement age.

Thursday, June 3, 2010


I mentioned RECs (Renewable Energy Credit) for the Thermal Solar heater, in a previous post. Some folks are not aware you can sell these RECs. They do not even know that Thermal Solar has RECs. Well they do. RECs are based on a RPS, Renewable Portfolio Standards , system. It varies from State to State. There are many States coming on-board to allow outsource buying of these RPS in RECs. There are some companies that will buy these RECs. One of them is S-REC TRADE AN ONLINE TRADING. This is a portion of their question and answer section.

"......Are solar thermal SRECs valued the same as solar photovoltaic SRECs sold in auction?
Yes, in DC and NC, solar thermal facilities can be approved to generate SRECs that have the same value to buyers purchasing to meet state compliance requirements. Any auction for SRECs in DC will include solar PV and solar thermal SRECs sold at the same price
Both DC and NC allow out-of-state facilities to qualify, so many states are eligible to sell into these markets. If your state is not eligible to sell into DC or NC, then the RECs produced by your facility have no value to buyers in the state compliance markets (i.e. our buyers). You may still however be able to find ways to sell the RECs in voluntary or non-solar compliance markets – also known as generic REC markets. There are companies out there that may help...."

We are with a company that will also buy our Thermal RECs based on the RPS of our system. We have a bill in our legislature right now that is on this very subject. Our hope is that Maryland will come on board and allow the companies in Maryland to buy the Thermal S-RECs.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

VSR-Flooring Completed

Over the weekend we put the floor in. We used a recycled-green friendly underlayment From Precision Components. It had its own seam tape included in the product, was easy to install. Since we were putting in a wood floor in an upstairs place, I felt we need a sound deadening underlayment. This one use both sound proof and moisture barrier , great for the Bamboo floor.
The Floor is a Stranded Bamboo with a striated pattern from Teragren. The flooring is harder than Oak and Maple. It was very easy to install. We used a carbide tip to cut, and when we used the sliding compound miter the board were cut upsided down to prevent the edges for chipping. when we used the Bench saw, also with a carbide tip blade, it was cut face up. We had very smooth edges. A scribe saw was used for the vent cut out. Still we had smooth edges.
The flooring part of the Project took us 16 hours. That included the Planning and discussion on each row lay out. Since we wanted as little waste as possible and still stay within the company's guide line on placement. The room size is 10 x 11 foot. We had one closet, one vent and a door way to maneuver.
The cost.....We went to a flooring store to get an estimate on the same flooring to be installed by them. Their cost was 2900.00. We purchased the flooring from the manufacture- Teragren- distributor. The flooring cost was 886.00. We picked it up 6 boxes, 6 panels in each box, at the Distributors Warehouse in Baltimore. The underlayment cost 90.00 at our Home Improvement store. So our savings installing it ourselves was 1924.00.
I have installed, Pergo and Shaw flooring, all click and drop floors. This Stranded Bamboo click and drop floating floor was the easiest yet to install. With the other ones once you click in the floor you can not un-click them or move them easily. With the Teragren Synergy click and drop flooring , the install was very easy and you could adjust easily. However once the floor was in it is very strong. You can not even see the length wise seems of the boards. I am very impressed with this product.
You can click on the photos to enlarge.
this is the view from the doorway looking toward the window and vent.

This is looking toward the mural and into the closet.

Another sneak peek at the mural