FB FIND OF THE WEEK #2: DIY Hair Dryer/Flat Iron Storage Stand

 

After seeing this on FaceBook, MarkdownMom found directions for this project at Pinterest This project will run you under $10 to make.

Supplies : 3x3x2.PVC Pipe – Wye Shape.   Spray paint  (in color of your choice) plus other decorating supplies.   MDM suggests add a weight at the bottom or, if attaching to a cabinet , 10 x 3/4wood screws .

Quick, Handy, and Cheap!

Facebook Finds: Great Homemade Holiday or Hostess Gift

This recipe shared on Facebook has given birth to a new category of Fabulous Facebook Finds on MarkdownMom.  This comes from the Land o’ Lakes Company® and is an easy recipe and with its’ presentation in sealed glass jars identified by chalkboard labels spells fantastic  homemade gift!

HOT FUDGE RECIPE

 

Homemade hot fudge
by land o lakes

1/2 cup Land O Lakes® Butter
1 cup real semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

Combine all sauce ingredients in 2-quart nonstick saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, 5 minutes or until butter and chips are melted and sauce is smooth. Remove from heat.

Stir in flavor variation from below, if desired.

Pour into jars or other airtight containers for gift giving. Store refrigerated. Reheat as needed.

5 of MarkdownMom's Favorite Quick & Easy Holiday Fudge Recipes Plus 1

Cookie, candy,  bars and all sorts of bite-size goodies make the holidays more festive and are great  treats to give and receive.  Here are a few of MDM’s favorite candy recipes collected from the internet:

1.  Two Minute Microwave Fudge.  Always a favorite and easy to make.

Ingredients
1 lb powdered sugar
2/3 cup cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Directions
Sift powdered sugar, cocoa, and salt into a 1 quart microwave safe bowl.
Stir in milk and vanilla.
Mix well.
Place butter on top.
Microwave on high, 2 minutes.
Beat with wooden spoon until smooth.
Stir in nuts (OPTIONAL).
Spread in 8 X 8 X 2 inch baking pan.
Chill about 1 hour or until firm.
Cut into pieces.

+1.  Crock Pot Chocolate Candy by My Fridge Food

2.  Easy Peanut Butter Cup Fudge posted by Kitchen Krafts

3.  Homemade Pumpkin Fudge by ZipList

4.  Quick and  Easy Peppermint Fudge by Food Network

5.  Super Easy Chocolate Cherry Fudge by Group Recipes

Repurposing: When Old Is New Again

Finds at flea markets, thrift stores, or backyard sales don’t have to be antiques to have value.  Designers today have found that there is money in thinking out-of-the-box when it comes to old things.  HGTV is replete with repurposing, achieving that quirky artisan look, that corner that lends interest to a room, the je ne sais quoi item that draws attention by using “old junk.”

A new development in finding these objects is the rise of retailers to include these one-of-a-kind items for sale online.  For example,, Haute Look, an outlet for Nordstrom, has  new category labeled “Authentic Vintage Curiosities & Beyond.”  Here you will find old shipping boxes with faded manufacturers names or advertising that lend themselves for storage & organization, colored bowling pins to keep stacks of books in line, or a french gymnast bar for your exercise room, just to name a few.

Another retailer dedicated to a certain style, Napastyle, has a new spin-off Barn Door, advertised as a site for  one-of-a- kind finds & deals, so you know you are dealing with limited supplies of any item.  Napastyle first started bringing in collectibles from Europe a couple of years ago where there was a plentiful supply, and now this new site has expanded to include vintage, rare, deals, and even a “Final Markdown” category that span American eras such as early homestead, depression, to mid-century. Vintage tins, furniture, and home accessories such as scales and more are part of their inventory.

You must know your antiques and collectibles to find a bargain, but these sites are good to find a particular item to complete your collection or for us bargain hunters, this is another reference point to find what is popular, or the retail prices of what we currently own.

Macy's Home Sale 2012 Begins Wednesday!

It’s finally here!  Macy’s Home Sale begins with 5 Days of Specials on Wednesday, January 25-Sunday, January 29, 2012. 

Save an extra 15% off With Macy’s Card or Savings Pass on select sales and clearance.  Text CPN or 62297 (valid through January 31, 2012).  Plus this weekend in store MarkdownMom found sales of up to 70%+ off on apparel and shoes including boots.

Tip Of The Week #71: Electrical Home Maintenance

Remodeling and updating often requires changes to the electrical system.  Some changes are easy and not prohibited by local ordinances.  DIYers can often do these changes provided that they research the project and take the necessary safety precautions.  This is especially true when dealing with electrical wiring.  Homes that are completely finish may require more than just a sensor to find where the wires are hidden in the walls.  Older homes can hide old wiring even gas lines for lighting.  And you can never be sure if the previous changes to the system met code or are safe.  MarkdownMom has found lamp cords used to extend outlets for light fixtures, junction boxes hidden in the wall, and wiring that did not follow any known schematic plan.

1.   Major renovations are those that require deconstruction to the bare walls unless you have a current electrical plan with your home plans  that is fully updated and includes any recent renovations.

2.    Outfit yourself with the necessary tools before starting any project.  Even replacing a regular outlet with a GFI can hold dangers.  Testers that will indicate if the outlet is properly grounded or “live” are a must.

3.  When in doubt about the electrical layout, MarkdownMom always shuts down the entire system at the box to insure that you won’t run into an unknown “live” wire.  It’s important to have adequateht  lighting, so be sure to have flashlights available.  A must have  light MarkdownMom prefers is one that has an elastic band and is worn on your head leaving your hands free to do the work.

4.  Take as many CEE courses offered from technical schools or  DIY stores and suppliers and  adult learning classes offered by the public schools.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  Read references books.  Old reference books can give you an idea of what you may encounter when renovating vintage properties.

5.  Draw up a plan and run it by your local expert at the hardware store or home supply store or if you’re lucky a friend with extensive knowledge and experience.

5.  Call in professionals as dictated by your local ordinances and get necessary building permits if required.  MarkdownMom views herself as a somewhat savvy diyer, but would not attempt to do projects that require dealing with the major power line coming into a dwelling and this includes providing power to a new building,  replacing an electrical box with a larger one, carrying electricity to an unattached garage or out-building, even to using 240/30A or 240/40A wire commonly used for electrical dryers and stoves.   And when necessary get the building inspector to sign-off on any of your work.

MDM Says:  Remember Safety Is Always  #1  In Cost Savings!

Quick Tip: Make a Dryer Vent Vacuum Cleaner Attachment

Make a Lint Lizard

Unless you have been hiding under a rock–you have likely seen the lint lizard advertised on TV. It is a long tube attachment for your vacuum. It is designed to fit in hard to reach places inside your dryer to suck up lint that may be clogging your dryer’s exhaust.

But you do not need to buy the lint lizard–you can make one yourself!

1. Go to the hardware store. Buy a five foot clear tubing with a 1 inch diameter. It will cost about $3.00.

2. Get some insulation tape (padded tape). And wrap it around one of the ends of the lint lizard. Keep wrapping until it makes the diamater just large enough to be slightly larger than the end of your vacuum hose.

3. The clear tubbing with the padded end should just fit snugly. You may want to tape the tube to the vacuum hose for added security.

Place the hose in your dryer to suck up the lint. Please unplug the dryer from the electrical outlet before you start.

 

Warehouse Sale

Pottery Barn has a super sale once a year and it’s happening now!  Up to 75% off.

MarkdownMom found these terrific house numbers in burnished antique bronze with a branch motif, 8.5″-10.5″ high, reg. $14, on sale $9.

MDM Says:  Supplies and selections become very limited in short order so don’t wait long to shop!

If It's Monday, It's Wash Day?

Or so it is for the super organized.  I only know that for most of us wash day is the day when you run out of clean necessities or it no longer passes the smell test and just “spotting” won’t freshen it up.

To cut down wash day travail, MarkdownMom went to the experts at The Laundress.com® and found some terrific laundry products just in time to keep those holiday special frocks fresh.

 

For example, to spot and go, the The Wash & Stain Bars are a quick fix for stains other than those from tea or wine and a great take along for travel, $6.00 for a 2 oz. bar.

Another must have is their Wool & Cashmere Shampoo for both hand and machine washing, $19.00 for 16 oz.

View these products and so much more including tips, special holiday gift packages, and specialized laundry service for vintage clothing, expensive fabrics, and difficult stain removal.