Decorating can be difficult when you don’t have a large budget. Where do you start? How do you make all those pieces you’ve collected along the way work together? Here’s how I took a bunch of mismatched second-hand furniture and pulled the decor together to give myself a brand new, stylish dining room.
Tips and Tricks
One major way these bugs are spread is through travel. If you are like me and my family we only get a few vacations a year if we are lucky. So we take a lot of precautions and do a lot of research to ensure a fun and memorable trip. We pack a first aid kit with about every medication we could ever need, tell friends and family where we will be going and how to reach us, check all the fluids in the family car, check the tires, check Yelp for all the must visit restaurants to visit and which to avoid, and memorize every must see destination along the way and which areas to avoid along the way as well. I’m sure everyone uses some of these ideas to ensure their vacation go’s as smoothly as possible but there is an issue that a lot of people are forgetting and it can nearly ruin a vacation and follow you home causing months or more of headache and possibly thousands of dollars to exterminate, We are talking about Bed Bugs.
Listed here are the tools that I have found the most useful in my home renovation/reparation projects. You will want to research the different brands before you buy. Some tool companies make wonderful tools that are designed to last and some use plastic parts inside the tools which tend to break easily. Good quality tools that are well made are a joy to work with. The cheaper tools are decidedly NOT fun to work with. Check out as many reviews from “real people” as you can. Get the lowdown from friends and family first.
Probably the most handy tools ever! I use my drills all the time. The cordless feature means you don’t have to worry about dragging extension cords behind you. You just pick up the drill and off you go. The set I bought came with two batteries – I highly recommend you have at least 2 batteries if you buy cordless. Those batteries always tend to run down right when you need them fully charged the most!!
I used to use a screwdriver for everything but once you get hooked on using a drill instead of a screwdriver, you will never go back to hand tools…
I also bought a complete set of drill and screwdriver bits and sockets for $30. If you can only pick one of these 6 tool recommendations, pick this one. The drills and bit set will be used again and again and again and again. You won’t regret it.
2. Random Orbital Sander
A random orbital sander combines two motions (orbital and rotary) which reduces the possibility of swirl marks on the wood. It has a round pad rather than a square pad – that’s how you can tell the orbital sander from the random orbital sander. The orbital sander has a square pad. This is the most versatile portable sander you can own. You can hook it up to a shop vac and greatly reduce the amount of dust produced as well.
I never realized how handy this tool is until I bought one. I started off with a 5 1/2″ cordless version but once I got confident using it, I bought a 7 1/4″ corded one with several blades. A cordless circular saw is fabulous if you are only going to need to use one occasionally. Once I was bit by the building bug, I used mine all.the.time. Problem is that once the batteries age a bit, they don’t hold as much of a charge as they did when new and then you don’t have as much power going to the saw blade as you need. A corded saw is a much better choice overall, in my opinion.
I confess, I bought a jigsaw on sale without researching much and I regret that so much. I threw money away. That jigsaw was poor quality, didn’t hold the blade in place properly and I couldn’t get the precise cuts I wanted. I wound up buying another jigsaw this past year and it has been a joy to work with. Lesson learned…
Tools, love em or hate em you do need em! Once you learn how to use tools, you get hooked pretty fast. It feels so great to be able to build a piece of furniture or fix something yourself – especially when you’d rather save the money for a repairman or carpenter to spend on something else.
Here are my top 5 tips to easily afford a nice set of tools: .
1. Buy New With A Zero-Interest Monthly Payment Plan
Big Box stores generally offer no interest payment plans when you spend a certain amount using their credit card. Some even offer a discount on your first purchase with their credit card. Use this to your advantage! Watch for sales around Father’s Day and Christmas where bigger discounts are available. Some websites offer the option of setting up sales alerts so that you get an email when the product you want is coming up. Canadian Tire is one store that does this. Don’t buy full price if you don’t have to! If you can combine 12-18 months to pay with no interest on sale priced tools, you’ll be able to buy more tools! The thing to remember with these no interest plans is that if you don’t pay off the full balance by the end of the term, you have to pay a horrific interest rate on the entire period of the payment plan. Be sure to divide the total price you paid for the tools by the number of months you have to pay so that you pay the balance off fully before the end of the no-interest period!!
You probably already have a bag of Epsom Salt hanging out around your house. Pretty much everyone knows you can use it in the bathtub for muscle aches, but did you know how versatile Epsom Salts really are?
Epsom salts aren’t a salt like table salt, they are a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. This combination has a multitude of benefits for health, gardening and household uses. I use them all the time in my garden and around the house. Here are just a few of the ways you can use Epsom Salts.
If there is one thing we have too much of it is stuff. More specifically, things we don’t need that have accumulated over the years. Spring cleaning is a great time to keep this problem in check, but who wants to wait all winter? Instead, I would recommend a different motive, cleaning house for charity.
Hardware for Habitat
I recently remodeled the nursery for my first child and ended up with a bunch of leftover parts. The hardware for the doors was replaced along with the overhead light and electrical fixtures. There was nothing wrong with any of these pieces. They simply did not fit the theme. To avoid being wasteful, I dropped off all these parts to Habitat for Humanity where they will go to good use. This organization either sells the items to fund operations or reuses them in projects. Either way, your leftover hardware and fixtures can be put to good use!