My Stump Grinding Tip – Hire Someone

To grind or not to grind?  Here is my best stump grinding tip: Hire someone to do the work!

A Few Stumps To Grind

One of the features that drew us to purchase our home 10 years ago was the number of mature trees on our lot.  Our

Image from Morguefile via dhester

house is relatively new (built in 1999), but the developer kept many mature trees.  We love this.  However, with a number of mature trees, we had to have some removed.  A few years ago, we started losing quite a few elm trees.  After the dust settled, we have a few less elm trees left, but had a few more stumps.  I wanted to get them ground out and put grass seed down, so I debated whether to do it myself or have someone do it.

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Appreciation For A Working Snowblower

Tonight we’re supposed to get our second snowstorm of the season, both coming in the period of a week.  I am feeling a lot better about this one.  Why?  Because we have a working snowblower once again!

Snowblowers Are Easy To Forget About During Warm Novembers

It’s been a few years since I’ve had the snowblower worked on.  It’s a really old but dependable unit.  I think my parents bought it in the 1980’s.  It worked great for them, and they gave it to me when they started having someone do their snow.  By that time, pretty much the entire guts of the machine had worn down, but the frame and the engine were still going strong.

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Why Don’t Timers Keep Good Time?

Timers are built into different devices that serve a variety of purposes.  You’d think that they would all have one thing in common, right?  Keeping accurate time.  After all, it’s right there in the name!

But, while this may be true for many devices, it doesn’t seem so in our house.

Four Timers, Three Fails

While we have many things that keep time, we have four timers in our house where keeping accurate time is pretty important.

  • Lamp Timers (x2) – We have one each in our living room and our family room, which of course turn lights on and off at designated times.  They’re two completely different brands of timer.
  • Thermostat – Our programmable thermostat adjusts the temperature at various points of the day, keeping us comfortable and saving us money.
  • Lawn Sprinklers – They’re currently turned off until spring, but our sprinklers water the grass overnight to keep the yard looking good throughout summer.

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I May Never Buy A GE Appliance Again

For years, I’ve followed the trials and tribulations of the front loading washing machine issues surrounding mold and mildew.  Why?  Because the GE  front loading washer that we have has been plagued with these issues since we bought it in 2007.

At the time, I thought it was great.  The community where we moved had some of the highest water rates in the area, so it was a HUGE win to save money on the water bill with the new type of machine that used significantly less water.

The honeymoon quickly wore off.

Moldy Gasket

When we first got our machine, we did what any sensible person would do and closed the door when it wasn’t in use.  Sound, reasonable, right?  Well, we quickly found out that was a bad idea when the rubber gasket around the door started getting covered in mildew.

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4 Reasons Why I Love My Smart Meter

Do an Internet search for ‘smart meter’ and the results aren’t pretty.  Most of the top results are articles or blog posts complaining about smart meters and pretty much suggesting that everybody that has one is going to get cancer.  To that, I say, hogwash.  In fact, I’ll go so far as to say that I love my smart meter.  Yes, I used the word ‘love’ and even if I’m the only person in the world, so be it, but I think as time goes on, more people will find that their smart meter is not something to complain about, but instead something to embrace.

Smart Meters 101

First of all, what is a smart meter?

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How I Easily Saved Money At Lowes

Spring is one of my favorite times of the year, but one of the things I don’t like are the inevitable costs that come about for the upkeep on the yard areas.  Flowers are exempt, because, well, flowers are awesome, but there’s always a few other things.  I had a list of items that I needed to get and decided it was time for a trip to Lowe’s.  I was pretty happy with how things turned out because I saved money at Lowes by doing a few simple things.

Our Lowe’s Shopping List

  • Garden Soil for the soon-to-be planted flower beds
  • Potting Soil for the flowers we put out on the deck
  • Top Soil to fill in a hole where a rotting tree stump used to be
  • Grass seed for the aforementioned spot
  • A new hose nozzle as I broke the handle on the old one last year by snagging it on a tree.  Oopsmb-2016-05-sandbox
  • New play sand for the kids sand box
  • A bag of mulch.  We mulched last year and most of it lasts every two years.  There’s one tree in the street that needs it more often because the lawn mower tends to chew up the mulch
  • Wasp and hornet spray.  We get at least one nest every year.

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12 Items We Always Have In Our Pantry

We don’t have a walk in pantry, but we do have some shelving downstairs at the bottom of the stairs that houses our stock-up items and overflow items.

I was taking a look and noticed that there are some things that we always have.  They either:

  • Are used in many planned meals we make
  • Can be used to throw something together

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Powered Device Not Working? Check The Battery Contacts

I’ve said this before on this blog, but the fact that it keeps happening makes it worth repeating: If you have a battery driven device that isn’t working properly, it’s important to check the battery contacts.

This just happened to us again during a recent cold spell.  This time, it was our thermostat.

I woke up and I could immediately tell that the temperature was not right.  I couldn’t see my breath or anything, but I know what the house feels like when I take that first step out of the covers, and this was colder than it should be.

For the record, the variation was only three degrees off.  We have the heat drop to 60 at night, and it was 57.

I wasn’t sure what was going on, but went downstairs to investigate.

The first thing I found was that the thermostat was the issue, as it was flashing the pretty obvious message: LOW BATT.

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Is The Quality of CFL Bulbs On The Decline?

I know many people don’t like them, but I’ve always been a supporter of CFL bulbs.  Some of the early bulbs were a bit hard to handle.  Plus,they developed a reputation early on about taking a long time to light.  Even though these have improved, many people don’t like them.  However, recent observations have made me wonder if the quality of CFL bulbs has declined.

Long Lasting Bulbs Was A Selling Point

I was really impressed with was how long they seemed to last.  It was a major selling point for CFL bulbs.The average bulb was advertised to last, on average, for around 7 years.  This would vary based on usage, and it was noted that if you frequently turn your lights on and off, the expectation would be reduced.  This made sense.

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Do You Speak Up About High Prices?

I had a situation pop up recently where I found that a price was way higher than it should have been.  I  thought it would be a good time to reflect on high prices.

Our Gutters

Our gutters in the back of the house are clogged with leaves.  I never had them cleaned out last year, and there’s one in particular that, when the runoff overflows because the hole to the downspout is plugged with leaves, will ice up the entire 20′ down the side of the house.  It happened last winter, and I figured with the damage done, I’d address it this fall.

There’s a guy that does our window cleaning that also will clean gutters, and I know that he has the right ladders and skills for the job.  We ended up calling him, but I always like to look at alternatives.

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