Craft, Home

Turn On The Lights

Well, the “throw some holiday lights in a mason jar” thing finally made it to Real Simple. Saw it while I was scanning this month’s RS in the bath and almost dropped the magazine in the water. Really, Real Simple? It took ya this long? Did one of your writers finally see it on Pinterest or something?

I decided not to be outdone by Real Simple. After my bath I marched into the kitchen, dumped all the quinoa out of the prettiest jar in the pantry, and stuffed in some blue and white LED snowflake lights that we had lying about. I’m undecided about the outcome, but glad that I got it out of my system.

A few things that came to mind after I was done (AKA five minutes later):

  • You actually need a pretty big jar with a wide mouth to stuff all those lights in there. Like not “drinking a trendy cocktail out of a mason jar-sized mason jar” but “this is going to be full of beans and heavy as hell when I lug it back from the co-op -sized mason jar.” This makes sense, but I had not thought of scale when I saw the project on others’ blogs.
  • White cords with white lights are key. Green cords look a bit messy to me in broad daylight. I suppose it comes down to taste.
  • Lights that are battery charged make the most sense for stuffing in there, but if you use wall plug in lights, just cut a hole in the top of the lid. If you’re using a Ball mason jar, you can remove the top circular part of the lid for the same look.
  • Safety is key. I’m paranoid about the heat of the lights melting the whole shebang, causing a fire or exploding the jar, leaving me permanently blinded (even though I think Mythbusters proved that was not quite possible) so I think LED lights are the way to go. Or you could just use them because they save energy.

They’re cute I guess.

Green, Home, Life

Handwashing Makes Me Happy

One of my favorite things to do during the weekends when the weather permits is to handwash a few of my “delicate” clothes. I know, it sounds incredibly domestic, doesn’t it? Well I didn’t say that I washed all my clothes this way- that would be too much work !

I like handwashing for many reasons. It saves me laundry money, it preserves my clothes longer (who are you gonna trust with your bras, you or the laundry machine across that street that’s full of gum and hair?),  and I find it very relaxing.

It sounds so corny, but it’s true: pretty much every time I hand wash my clothes I go into an instant zen meditation. I am no longer thinking. I am:

  • Adding a dash of detergent to a kitchen bowl (A sink would take too much water)
  • Filling the bowl with cool water
  • Adding my clothes
  • Swirling the clothes in the soapy water. Maybe they can sit for a minute while I make some coffee…
  • Draining the soapy water
  • Rinsing my clothes with water until the water runs clear
  • Gently squeezing out excess water from my clothes
  • Hanging my clothes outside on the clothesline
  • Saying hi to the cat that lives across the yard -“Hi Milo!”
  • Admiring my clothes fluttering in the wind while I drink my coffee

Try washing your clothes by hand, you might like it! Don’t worry, there’s really no way that you can mess this up.