Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Strawberry Moon

Tonight will be the strawberry moon.  It is a full moon and coincides with the best time to pick strawberries.  It should be pretty.  Here is a link from The Weather Channel with more details:
Strawberry Moon

The last full moon I got some pretty pictures.  I hope I get some more good ones tonight.

Steam Cleaning Floors

My downstairs has a lot of hard surfaces like tile and hardwoods.  I cleaned the tiles thoroughly with various cleaners like ammonia and white vinegar when I moved in.  The way the tiles are they have lighter and darker areas.  I wanted to get a steam cleaner to give them a deeper clean.

I decided on the Bissell Powerfresh Steam Cleaner.  It has 3 levels of cleaning and these pod things you put in that make the floors smell good. 

I chose the deepest clean setting which is very intense steam and left it in place for a bit on each tile.  They give you 2 cloths and you should use distilled water.  It is a large area and took me 4 hrs from start to finish.  I definitely feel the intense heat of the steam would kill any bacteria.  I got a lot of dirt up I didn't realize I had especially around the fireplace. 

My process was to vacuum the whole downstairs first.  I then started in the powder room and kitchen area.  I used one cloth and then took it off and used the second (as they get dirty).  Once I got those areas done I washed the cloths and let those floors dry.  I moved into the dinette area and then into the main living room.  I stopped and washed the cloths.  I then moved to the hardwoods but did them on light steam and that was much quicker.  My last area was the master bathroom.  It went pretty fast.

Overall I was happy with the process.  It was easy to use and I feel like my floors are cleaner.  The cloths do get dirty/discolored.  I guess that means I had a dirty floor....eek.  I think I will clean regularly with the Swiffer like I have and a few times a year do the steam to keep it really clean.

I like the steamer it was lightweight and easy to use. 

Laundry Room Cabinets

I have a very small laundry room.  The washer is on one side, dryer on the other.  I have the LG frontloading and they are on the stands.  There are built in cabinets above them.  I love the convenience but the cabinets almost looked yellowed to me. 

One of the projects on my list was to paint the cabinets and organize them.  It was no fun being in that small space in the heat, but it was so worth it.  Here are some pics:

I think they look much brighter and cleaner now.  I got some bins from the Dollar Tree and organized one side.  The other is mostly detergent and stuff which is big to put in bins. 
As you can tell from my blog, I like to stay positive.  Here are some good quotes.

Hope you have a great week!

Ditching cable

I am with Comcast for internet and tv.  As you guys know, they constantly raise rates and have a lot of fees.  I only get slightly higher then basic cable (no HBO etc).  They had another rate increase and I was not happy.  I have been researching alternatives to cable.

I have talked to others who have switched to Netflix, hulu or got the antenna to get basic tv.  I have also checked with Google fiber to see if they are in my area yet (Atlanta is one of the cities they have targeted to bring their super high speed internet).  They are not in my area.

My understanding is there is no one that is true a la cart channels yet.  Meaning I really only want Disney/ESPN, SyFy, TNT, FX.  I don't want to pay for anything else.  Also if you use Netflix, Roku etc you still need a good internet connection and devices for the tvs. 

So I stuck with Comcast internet and basic cable but did not agree to a 2 yr deal as I think big changes are coming in this area.  What I want is good internet speed, a la cart options or something like Netflix where you can see a lot of shows.  I just have to figure out what to attach to each tv to get Netflix (if I cancel basic cable).  I want to be able to watch shows on all my tvs so I will need some type of devices for each one.  I am looking at Roku, fire stick etc.

Hopefully the right offering becomes available soon so we can ditch cable and lower the cost for tv/internet.

Hail Storm

We had a strong hail storm here in GA which damaged plants in my garden.  It also damaged roofs so a lot of my neighbors are having roof replacement.  Here are some pictures of the size and amount of hail.

Luckily it didn't do any serious damage to my plants.  I also have a relatively new roof so I had no problems.  I was surprised by the intensity.  Mother nature has been active with all this strange weather lately.


My front porch gets direct sun for hours.  I love when people have pots on the front porch with a variety of plants.  The problem for me is anything delicate just fries in the sun and heat.  I had caladium (we would call them elephant ears) in them last year which looked great but if you didn't water them every day they wilted.

This year I tried Lantana which is a Florida plant and more hardy.  I got the one labelled pink but for some reason they are white then some of them turn slightly pink so it is a mostly white plant. 

Since then my Dad told me they are not lantana as the leaves are more fern like.  After much research we found these are Yarrow.  They look very similar to lantana.  I am ok either way I just wanted something that can handle intense sun and these are doing great.  I was told they spread fast but since they are in a container it is not a problem.

Outside in my planters by the french doors I added these cute flowers.

Hopefully they will do well and survive any insect attacks.  I believe these are Pentas and can take direct sun so hopefully they are happy.

Newest Flowers

I wanted a cute flowering plant on my kitchen counter.  I previously had a nice green plant but it was kind of blah.  I fell in love with this Dahlia as the flower was stunning. 
I saw the buds and thought this was the one.  Unfortunately it must not have gotten enough sunlight and none of the other buds bloomed.  I put it outside in partial sun under a butterfly bush hoping it would be happier.  A heavy rainstorm came in and the plant looks rough.  I will keep an eye on it.
In the meantime I had been shopping and saw a pretty Gerber Daisy.  I love them and had just given my mom a pink one for Mother's Day.  I decided to get a red one. 

So far it is happy.  I hope it thrives inside as I like that pop of red against the black granite.

Knock out rose from a cutting

I love bright pretty flowers.  I had several hibiscus flowers in containers but they didn't make it through the winter.  Since I had some knockout roses I decided to try to root some.  I cut a stem off my existing roses after the 2nd bud (branch area) and put honey on the end then put them in the middle of the new containers.  Of the 4 I planted 2 lived.  One actually got a big bloom on the tiny plant.

So far the 2 little plants are doing well.  I have tried 2 new stems for the other planters.  Hopefully they will take root and thrive.  We have had some heavy rain here in GA so that should help all the plants.