28 June 2010

Tomatoes ----Yes!

Hello there!  So glad you stopped by Two Dogs today because I am about to burst with news.  You will think I am getting feeble minded when I tell you that news, but that's OK.  I'm smiling from ear to ear and please remember:  Only crazy, whacked out people smile all the time!  Uh huh! :-)    So what's this fabulous news?  Remember those tomato plants I put in the ground in MARCH?  Planted in-ground and covered with a Wall-o-waters?  These plants endured numerous hard freezes for several days at a time, some nice days, some downpours of rain, hail --- the whole gamut -- but mostly too-cold-for-a-garden-to-grow weather.  After all that, June finally arrived, and the weather seemed to settle down, although we did have a cold night or two beyond our supposedly frost-free date.  Those tomato plants survived although a couple of them looked pretty rugged.  The hot/cold seesaw didn't do them any favors and I had to remove a few branches that were pretty much done for.  BUT ------ almost to a plant, there are tomatoes already setting on those vines.  They aren't big, but they are there and the plants are covered with lots of blossoms.  I even have ripe tomatoes on two of them!  It is unbelievable and I just had to take a picture to show you. 

Ignore those lurking weeds!!!!
Thanks so much for stopping by today.  I hope you have a wonderful week! 

21 June 2010

My old friend vinegar

Hey there ----- good morning!  Looks like summer has FINALLY arrived and decided to stick around, so as you can imagine, I am one happy camper. 

Last week's post was on homemade dish washing detergent, and I hope you tried making your own and are happy with the results. This week I wanted to tell you about a homemade rinse agent; they go hand in hand.    Homemade rinse agents are an even bigger savings money wise.  They help get your dishes cleaner and drier but they are pretty darn expensive.  So let's "make" our own. 

You will need a bottle of white vinegar.  That's it.  Just white vinegar.  Pour it into your dishwasher's automatic dispenser for rinse agents and you're set.    Refill as needed.   You are going to love the results.  No water spots,  your dishes will dry faster because the water will sheet off, and there's no harsh  chemicals. Matter of fact, they will sparkle like you wouldn't believe.  Did I mention it will save you a lot of greenbacks?  It also helps keep your dishwasher cleaner because of its astringent nature.  But darn, you still have to put those darn dishes away yourself. . . . . . . . . .

Have a fabulous week my friends, and thank you for stopping by.

14 June 2010

Dirty dishes!

Good morning!  Thanks for stopping by. Sorry I missed last week's post.  I was busy working on that bedroom/sunroom swap and it took waaaay longer that I thought it would. Matter of fact, there are still things that need to be done to get that mess finished up, but it all just takes time.  But let's get going on this week's post which, you will be fascinated to know, involves dirty dishes.  None of us like that little chore, but it is just one of those homemaking chores that we can't eliminate; and no, letting the dog clean the dishes is NOT acceptable! :-)  Automatic dishwashers have made the chore easier, but if you are like me even that can become drudgery because once the dishes have been automatically washed they still have to be put away.  Gee, it's always something, huh?  I don't see an easy solution for that one.  I can't help you with putting your clean dishes away, but I can help you save some money.  Make your own dish washing detergent ---------  It's easy.  Really!!!
You will need that box of Borax that you bought for making your own laundry detergent (What do you mean you haven't tried that yet?  Your losing money, girl.  Get with it!!! :-)  You will also need baking soda.  I am sure you have some in your cupboard, or perhaps a small box in your refrigerator?  If all you have is that box in your refrigerator, go ahead and use some of it. Doesn't matter in the least that is has been silently sitting there on the shelf in your fridge sucking up any unpleasant odors that may have been lurking. Better yet, buy a new box for the fridge and keep the old one for use as part of your new dish washing detergent mix.  Double duty!!! I love it!  Sorry, I got carried away. The recipe is:

1 Tablespoon Borax
1 Tablespoon baking soda

That's it. Didn't I tell you it was easy?   Easy peasy to mix up a big batch of equal parts Borax and baking soda.  Fill your dishwasher's detergent compartment, close the door, and flip the switch.  You are one cycle away from clean dishes and it cost you mere pennies. Probably a percentage of a penny.  Or less!  I have not calculated the savings because it is just so obvious that this is a huge money saver.  And the best part?  THIS WORKS LIKE A CHARM.  Why does it work? Borax and baking soda are natural disinfectants and mild abrasives.  They work together to blast away stuck on food and germs. In fact, Borax is a common ingredient in many commercial detergents. So you get clean dishes without harsh chemicals, it is environmentally friendly because it is phosphate free, and you save lots of money in the bargain.  That can't be beat. So what are you waiting for?  Go do some dishes! 
And please be sure to keep your homemade dish washing detergent out of the reach of children and pets.