Tag Archives: diy

Keep Rodents Away from Your Warm House.

By Tia Cristy

Keep Rodents Away from Your Warm House.

 

 

When it’s cold outside, you want to stay warm. Well, so do the rodents and other pests.

Most people will say there’s not enough room in their home for both their families and pests.

If you want an organic remedy to keep mice and other creatures away from the house try putting cotton balls soaked in uncut peppermint oil along the foundation, inside crawl spaces, basements, and attics. The long-lasting smell will keep unwanted visitors out.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

Forget Interior Design! Think About The Exterior Design Of Your Home

Forget Interior Design! Think About The Exterior Design Of Your Home

It’s all too easy to consider the interior design of our homes, at the detriment of the exterior. When thinking about renovations, we consider knocking through the kitchen and the dining room to create an open plan living space, we choose to replace the avocado bathroom suite, or we consider redecorating the living room. Very rarely do our minds go to our driveway, our garden or the frontage of our dwellings. However, we should be giving our humble abodes the curb appeal that they deserve.

There’s nothing worse than having the most creative, incredible and imaginative interior and having a crummy driveway up to the front door. This doesn’t match up. You need to coif the outside of your home in the same way as you do the inside of your pad. Take a look at these simple ways that you can bring the exterior of your home up to scratch.

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Frontage

The frontage of our homes should look clean at the very least. It doesn’t matter whether you live in a condo by the beach, a townhouse or a bungalow, your home should look smart. Any flaky masonry paint, dodgy flashing or cracked window fascias can look undesirable and messy. It’s time to consider how you want your home to look.

Depending on your budget you may choose to replace your windows. Think about whether you’d like wood or uPVC fascias depending on the sort of look you want for your property. Wood looks fantastic if you have an oak front door or if you live in an older property. uPVC fascias are perfect for the more modern home. Either is energy efficient so long as you ensure you are installing double glazing to keep the heat in.

If you have pebble dash on your exterior walls and the beige hues are getting to you, just paint them white. Masonry paint is weatherproof and can actually protect the exterior of your home. The brightness you can achieve from white paint over your pebble dash will lift your home and revolutionise its look, bringing it into the twenty first century. People crave light, bright and aspirational homes. Make yours one of them.

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Gardens

If you are blessed with a large rear garden, it’s time to tackle the jungle that has somehow emerged. Cut back shrubbery, and don’t be scared to deadhead and strip right back. Starting from scratch is vital. Foliage and flowers are very resilient and will appreciate the cutting back to enable new growth.

If you have a grass area, make sure you mow the lawn. By cutting this back once a week during the warmer months, you are creating the perfect environment for healthy growth. Sprinkle some lawn-meal if needed and water your grass if you have any brown patches. Grass is resilient and will come back from the most severe of droughts, so don’t worry. You will never have to rip up a lawn and start again.

Having an area outside that can be utilized for al fresco dining is wonderful. If your ground is a tad wonky, needs leveling out, and could do with a revamp, why not consider employing patio builders to custom design a deck or patio. With a personalised approach, you can have the patio or decking of your dreams. Hardwood, composite designs or brickwork patterns can add another level of creativity to your backyard. Explore your options and enjoy using your imagination just as you would with the interior of your home.

No matter how small or large your back garden is, try and create two or three zones. This way, you have a clear purpose for your garden and can use it as a other room of your home. Have an area for dining and barbecues, an area for growing pot plants, a veggie patch, a rockery, a water feature or some lawn. You don’t have to create tens of zones, just a couple will do. Think of renovating your garden in the same way as redecorating your bedroom. By adding visual interest to your outside areas, you are bringing new life to your entire pad.

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Driveway

Some people live directly on the road with very little drive to speak of. However, most people have a small section of land to the front of their property that often gets overlooked. Weeds can grow between the crevices of brickwork, lawn can become overgrown and the hanging baskets we carefully adorn our frontages with, soon die and simply get left to hang for all eternity.

Instead of leaving everything to wallow, take some time once a month to take care of the upkeep of your driveway. Spray some weedkiller, mow the lawn and hide the bins behind your wall so that the whole world can’t see your garbage. Your driveway is the route that your visitors, friends and family take to your home, so make sure it generates a super first impression. Cleanliness and tidiness are essential. If this is spot on, then your home will harness curb appeal.

If you want to enhance the driveway to your home even further, consider installing some lighting to highlight the accompanying gardens or simply to light up the driveway in the dark. You don’t need to be spending a fortune of electronics with solar powered lights offering up an excellent energy saving alternative. Under brick lighting, pole lighting and traditional lamp lighting can lift your exterior and give that much needed curb appeal.

It’s only right that you want the interior of your home to be where you place most of your creative energy. The kitchen is the hub of your home, you spend most of your time in the evenings watching the TV in the living room with your brood, and you adore making your bedroom a haven of relaxation. However, don’t neglect the exterior of your property, as this also helps your home stand out from the crowd. Give it some much needed curb appeal and bask in your newfound and revolutionized pad.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

What Better Not to DIY In Your Home

By Guest Blogger, Patrick A.

What Better Not to DIY In Your Home

Somehow we started believing that DIY stands for Do Everything Yourself. This usually happens when the weather outside is colder and we are more focused on the interior. After all, summer is for having fun and taking a vacation from any kind of work.

But before you start DIY issues in your home, make sure you really know what you’re doing. It’s better to have bruised ego, then destroy your home or get injured, after all. However, to make it all easier for you, here is the list of things better left to the professionals.

Don’t Mess with Electricity

Electricity is no joke and it can cause serious injuries and even death if you don’t know what you are doing. Furthermore, you can endanger the lives of your loved ones and other people who are near you when you meddle with electricity. Just because you flipped a fuse switch doesn’t mean you can fix the whole electrical grid in your home. 

DIY Roof Repairs Can Cause More Damage

There are various roof problems, but most commonly you will have to deal with leaks. They are caused by broken tiles, bad insulation, rodents, and cracks, to name a few. And while some repairs may sound easy, they can be dangerous like slipping and falling off the roof.

Besides this being a risky job, you can do the repairs wrong and create more problems in the end. Cleaning gutters regularly and checking the roof for damages can prevent further damage. But waterproofing is a complex job that requires expertise and equipment, so hire professionals for that. 

Stay Away from Asbestos

Asbestos is renovation doomsday. Once it is airborne you can inhale it in your lungs and get sick from it. Professionals who deal with asbestos wear protective masks and suits and also use special measures to get rid of it.

Since this is a serious issue which can significantly impair the health of everyone in the house, you should definitely leave it to the experts. If you discover it in your home, call help immediately and leave the room.

Leave Home Appliances to Professionals

Every home appliance repair is different and there are so many things that may be wrong with a device. First of all, parts may need replacing, wiring might not be right and electronics needs assessment via special equipment. And that is not a job for someone with limited resources and knowledge.

In the end, you may cause more damage to your appliance or electrical grid during a short circuit. And in worst case scenario, you could injure yourself. So, do something fun instead and leave appliance repair to professionals.

Plumbing Is Not Fun, but Serious Business

There is not “only a small leak”, but every drop should be taken seriously immediately. While leaking faucet or shower may not be cause for immediate attention, other things are. That includes leaking pipes which if not taken care of properly can cause structural damage to the house.

If you want to try your plumbing skills, stick simple things like fixing a drain. Imagine not doing something right and overflowing a toilet or causing a flood with an unstoppable burst in a pipe. It all sounds like more work after the repair than before, so if unsure, better call a plumber to deal with the issues.

Lastly

No matter how tempted you are to show off your repair skills, some things are better left to professionals. It’s hard to resist numerous video tutorials available online, but in the end, DIY is not always a great solution. After all, it’s better to pay an expert then remedy the damage created by your amateur repairs.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram

Bio: Patrick Adams is a freelance writer and rock-blues fan. When he is not writing about home improvement, he loves to play chess, watch basketball, and play his guitar. More than anything, he loves to spend his time in his garage, repairing appliances and creating stuff from wood.

 

Is Your Home As Comfortable As You Deserve It To Be?

Is Your Home As Comfortable As You Deserve It To Be?

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A comfortable home is not something that’s simply nice to have. It’s something necessary to have. We all live relatively busy lives, we must earn our keep and we all have to put work into sustaining and creating beautiful memories with our families. You might add pets and hobbies to that list of personal obligations. At the end of the day, we are usually utterly and thoroughly spent. This is where the gentle embrace of our home should come and hug us from behind, allowing us to relax and fade into comfort. This allows us to stay sane day after day, but more than that, to feel protected, to feel actualized, as evidenced by the Maslow hierarchy of needs.

 

Is your home as comfortable as you deserve it to be? It might not be that obvious if it is. In order to take care of this circumstance, you might consider the following:

 

The Bedroom

 

The bedroom is the hub of comfort in your home. If it isn’t, it should be. The living room might be the place we can merrily discuss the day and share silly laughter with our families, but we all know then when we’re at our most tired and vulnerable, the bedroom is always there to nurse us back to refreshment. It’s unfortunate that many people neglect to decorate or prioritize this room from the beginning. Doing so can lend even more comfort to this room, and helping you relax, recharge and be close to your partner.

 

When was the last time you purchased new lighting for the room? Perhaps small LED strips under the bed will help you to gain that healthy and interesting glow. Maybe some gentle fairy lights placed around your bedhead in order to give the room some of that magical appeal will do the trick. Maybe its time to renew the carpet to be both comfortable and look beautiful. Ridding yourself of the wine stains or scuffs that can occur over years of use, can refresh your spirits. A bed that’s timeless can often give you real pause for comfort and thought, helping you rest in a long-term fixture you can feel identified with. The bedroom is one of the most excellent sleeping partners you can be in possession of, so be sure the room gently nurses the message of comfort to you, so you can rest easy.

 

The Living Room Sofa

 

The living room sofa is often something many people get wrong. This is the place you’ll relax and joke with your family, perhaps watching television on a Friday night or having your child proudly show you their new video game. But comfort is all in the sofa. A hugely, soft cushioned material isn’t always the best choice for real comfort, as there’s a difference between comfortable and comfortably supported. It might be that you’re opting for space with an L shaped sofa  or perhaps durability with leather that could support you more appropriately.

 

With these simple additions, your home is sure to take comfort into the stratosphere.

 

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

4 Great Reasons to Make Your Home Smart

By Guest Blogger, Diana S.

4 Great Reasons to Make Your Home Smart

 

It’s safe to say that technology is advancing at a rapid pace. In no more than a couple of decades, we went from corded phones to smartphones you can use to chat with your friends and shop online. Still, one of the biggest advantages the age of technology brought us is smart homes. Now you can have devices in your home like a thermostat, security cameras and a TV connected to a system you can control from your smartphone. If you’ve been thinking about making your home smart, here are 4 great reasons why you should go through with it.

Security

One of the best things about having a smart home is that it means you’ll have an advanced security system that includes cameras and motion sensors. When it comes to cameras, you can connect these to your smartphones, which will allow you to take a look at what’s happening inside of your home when you’re away. Motion sensors can be set up to send you a notification whenever someone enters your yard. Some smart homes even have fingerprint identification instead of traditional locks, and if you decide to invest in this as well, it’ll be even more difficult for burglars to get inside.

Flexibility

With more and more people deciding to make their homes smart, most new devices on the market can easily be integrated into an existing smart home system. This is a huge plus, mostly because even if you have top-notch devices, it doesn’t mean they’ll last forever, so it’s possible that you’ll need to find replacements at some point. And since you can integrate any new device into your smart home system, there’s absolutely nothing to worry about when making your home smart. Not to mention that there are all kinds of new smart devices being released and you’ll be able to add each of these into your smart home.

Remote control

We’ve already mentioned that by making your home smart, you’ll get to control all of your devices from your smartphone. It cannot be stressed enough how important this is, as it makes your life much easier. Let’s say you’re on your way home from work on a hot day. All you need to do is tap your smartphone and you’ll have your air conditioner turned on. It’s also important to mention that it doesn’t take a lot of effort to make your home controllable from far away as you can have professional CBus installers get the job done for you.

Functionality

If you’ve decided to make your home a smart home, you’ll also get to see all of your devices performing better. For example, by replacing a traditional TV for a smart one, not only will you be able to watch Netflix or YouTube on a big screen, but you’ll be able to connect it to your smartphone with just a few taps. Or, in case you choose to get a smart oven, cooking your chicken to perfection will be a real piece of cake. No matter which smart devices you opt for, your home life is guaranteed to become more enjoyable.

Smart homes sure are exciting stuff, and they’re definitely worth investing in. And with more and more homeowners deciding to turn their homes into smart homes, the biggest tech companies out there are giving their best to outdo one another. As a result, there are all kinds of smart devices available and some of these simply have to find their place in of your home. We can only expect to see more of these being released, so make sure you keep an eye on new smart home devices on the market.

 Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

Instead of Alcohol I can use lime juice? Responses from Tips

By, Tia Cristy

 

Responses from Tips

Hi M,

Thanks for reading and also thanks for the question. “Tia could you please tell me if instead of Alcohol I can use lime juice? –M” in regard to http://tipsfromtia.com/2012/11/26/how-to-remove-sticky-glue-from-labels-on-cloth.aspx


https://pixabay.com/en/background-bitter-breakfast-bright-1239267/

Lime juice probably isn’t the best way to go. I’ve never tried it, but lime juice itself has sticky properties. Not only that, it is very acidic and can bleach or weaken fabric over time. You could try a
white vinegar, it won’t change the color of the fabric.  Although remember, it’s acidic too and could weaken the fabric over time as well.

 

I would save the lime juice for a twist in a drink. But in case you didn’t know, lime is great for skin care. Lime fights bacteria and tightens pores. Don’t over use lime juice on your face. (maybe once a week, for sensitive skin) Remember, it’s like a mini acid peel at home.

 

Thanks again and keep on reading Tips from Tia. Looking good; feeling good!

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

How try dry out after the flood.

By, Tia Cristy

How try dry out after the flood.

So hurricanes can leave many in the mud and sand. I got to storms and their brutal effects up close. After Hurricane Sandy, I spent my day helping people clean up after the devastation. We were able to put many good tips to use.

Seeing soggy pictures and documents of great importance to these lovely people was heart-breaking. So I knew, I had to use my knowledge to help where I could. I took my time removing water logged photos from saturated albums full of wet sand and mud. I then showed the people how to dry them out using cornstarch. We discarded the albums themselves, but were able to save all the photos, documents and books that were of the highest significance to these people.

This process can work for most paper materials. Find a dry area to do this work. Get a cookie sheet and fill the bottom with pure cornstarch. Place the photo on top and shake some additional cornstarch on top of the photo or paper. Smooth it over with your hand gently. If the paper is very wet it will put a solid coating over the paper. Lightly knock off the excess and place flat on a surface lined with wax paper. You can do this repeatedly for all your pics and documents. Be sure to lay each thing separately, don’t stack.  Let alone for several hours. When photo is dry you will be able to rub your finger over the paper and the cornstarch will flake off. if it doesn’t come off easy it still needs drying time. If needed, add more cornstarch. Once fully dry, you can sweep off the powder with a soft paint brush. It takes a little patience for the complete process, but it’s worth doing to remove the moisture, so your important documents don’t wrinkle and curl as much as the would if they were simply air drying. Bonus tip, cornstarch kills many nasty bugs and organisms, which is great for sanitizing those flood filled documents.

As for books, paper back and hardback text books, drying them will take longer. First, lay them in a dry place; in direct sunlight is ideal. After they air dry for a day, they maybe ready for step 2.

Step 2, may sound excessive pending on the amount of books you want to dry out. Place the books in a plastic moving container, then add bags and bags of dry rice. It’s the same method as drying out electronics. Leave the books submerged in the rice for a day or two, (may need time longer depending on thickness and how saturated the books are) After the books have dried mostly then, sprinkle them with cornstarch. Again, this will kill yucky stuff that may still be on the pages.

To reuse the rice, place rice in the sun for the day and let air dry to remove the moisture that it soaked up. Use new bags of rice if you plan on drying out electronics so it is able to absorb as much moisture as possible. Electronic dry-outs can take a lot longer to get results. Have patience.

If you’ve been challenged by Sandy, Tips from Tia wishes you well. And, let us know if you need any other tips to help you get one step back to normal.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

 

What, Where, and When to Plant

What, Where, and When to Plant

Different areas of the world have different temperatures, but are you aware of the difference in soil?

Gilmour.com has come up with an incredible plant zone map that will guide you on the 3 w’s… what to plant, where to plant, and also when to plant. Click on the map and find out your zone, then on your zone to see what is best in your area. Happy planting!

 


Zone 1 | Zone 2 | Zone 3 | Zone 4 | Zone 5 | Zone 6 | Zone 7 | Zone 8 | Zone 9 | Zone 10 | Zone 11 | Zone 12

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

Decorate with A Message

By Tia Cristy

Decorate with A Message

Home décor is all about personal touch. Bare walls can feel cold and drab. Dressing up any colored wall with a splash of your own creative side can transcend your room into your masterpiece. When deciding what to place on the walls take your time to figure out what you can live with, what will make you happy to look at and what will inspire you day in and day out.

You Don’t Need to be a Business to Have a Sign

Adding a business sign to a feature wall in your home can become a great conversational piece. Place a sign that says simply ‘coffee’ in the kitchen can achieve a good mental vibe for morning. If letters are more your style, you can get individual letters to spell out your message. For the kids room, why not try large, chunky, metallic initials over the beds or dressers.

Go Neon

Neon isn’t just for the local pubs or salons. Picking up a neon sign for the man cave or placing one above the wet bar can attract just the right amount of attention.

Stay Inspired  

Placing an inspiring quote on the wall can fill a blank wall and give it a whole new life. If your not ready for the commitment on a wall, why not place a decal on a piece of old wood, and then hang the sign. Think about it, there are quotes for every room and every occasion. It’s a simple peel n’ stick method for art that will last for many years to come. If you have a wall design in your mind, but haven’t found it in the store, check out Americansignsletters.com where you can upload a picture for them to create your custom art. They even offer free shipping on every purchase, which is great for business owners too who are looking to revamp their signage.

So remember, when it comes to home décor, remember to make it your own space.

 Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.
 

How to Create a Kid-Friendly Bathroom

By Guest Blogger, Derek L.

How to Create a Kid-Friendly Bathroom

They will all tell you how beautiful it is when your little one says his first word or makes his first steps. But none of them will tell you about the horror of the darkest thoughts that will go through your head and about all that mess that waits for you to clean it up after that little one decides he no longer wants to go pee-pee with his mom, but all by himself – as the true big boy that he is. And speaking of big boys, why did you place that toilet seat so high, so he cannot climb it? And what is a little pee stain compared to the fact your child is now practically an adult? Jokes aside, there are some things that need to be done in order to save both your child and yourself from a lot of potential trouble.

Floors

Floors in a child-proof bathroom should be non-slip. In other words, opt for tiles that are small and rough (anti-slip) in order to eliminate the risk of your little loved one falling down and hurting himself. And if he still isn’t walking quite steadily, a great idea is to incorporate those non-slip mats as well. Finally, after every shower session, make sure every adult family member wipes off all the water puddles.

Fittings

Adult skin is a lot thicker than a child’s skin. And this is why you have to protect your child’s skin from getting burned with hot water. You will do this by incorporating those safe bath tub, sink and bidet thermostat fittings that can only reach a certain water temperature, and select valves with scalding protection. This way, those little hands will definitely remain protected against the heat.

Finishing

Avoid those pointy ceramics for your bathroom at all costs. In fact, you should rather opt for elegant and soft-edged bathroom supplies without any sharp corners that may hurt your child. Next, make sure that all glass areas are well secured. Also, you are more than welcome to install those invisible drawer handles and lockable cupboards that will prevent your child from grabbing the razor, a pair of scissors or a chemical product (which should, by the way, be kept as far away from them as possible – ideally, completely out of their sight and reach).

Space

If you simply aren’t blessed with a big and spacious bathroom, make sure it is always 100 percent decluttered. Use every inch of your bathroom space wisely, so it will both be aesthetically more pleasing, and safer for your child. And if, on the other hand, you do have a large bathroom, you have the luxury to install a large bathtub or shower that will allow several little ones to bathe at the same time, which is both time and money saving.

Levels

Try looking at your bathroom through your child’s eyes (and height). He will definitely need some help reaching the wash basin, so you might want to install a sturdy step-ladder in front of it. Next, keep storage levels on no more than one meter, so it is easily accessible to them as well. Install a showerhead with an adjustable height, so it fits you all. Smart showerheads are a huge trend right now. Finally, note that children quite enjoy seeing themselves in the mirror, so make sure yours is at the appropriate height.

Handling

The harsh truth is that bathroom items are made with only adults in mind – so your child’s little hands may find it quite difficult to use them. So when you go shopping for bathroom furniture, look at it through your children’s eyes. Go with easy-to-open shower doors, choose hooks instead of towel holders, invest in a solid shower caddy, etc.

Fun bathing

It is not always all about safety. What you should also do is to make this a fun experience for your little one. Let him play with his rubber and plastic toys during bath time, invest in a couple of colorful and fun accessories, as well as educational bath toys, have fun with color and maybe even consider putting a cartoon wallpaper to liven the space up a little bit.

Bathrooms can be a dangerous space for kids. And when the time comes when they can use it themselves, do your best to protect them.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.