Friday, May 27, 2016

DIY Lawn Mower Retreads

Mowing the lawn is something I find invigorating from time to time. It gives me a feeling of accomplishment. I've had my Wal-Mart Yard Pro since 2008. So far it has given good service. When it comes to maintenance namely, changing the tires because of tread wear, it takes some work. Work that I am not willing to pay for and something I have no idea how to do. 

Right now I have an excellent yard man who does my postage stamp of a lawn.  He fertilizes, weeds and clips the shrubs.

I would like to have it done every two weeks but, that can get into money I'd like to spend elsewhere so, he comes once a month. If I can get my mower running, I can cut in between times. Mowing the lawn has always given me a feeling of accomplishment and releases my endorphins.

I found this YouTube video to be helpful. I changed things up just a bit to fit my circumstance. Some of  the videos I viewed instructed getting an old bicycle tire, cutting the circumference and gluing it on the tire with rubber cement or silicone glue. Since the stair tread below had an adhesive backing, I chose it instead.

I bought the adhesive stair tread from Harbor Freight.

Measured and cut tread.
Following is what I meant by "my circumstance." The tutorial tells you how to retread a tire but not a BALD tire. I'm adventurous in this respect so I'm willing to experiment and see what happens. After all, it couldn't get worse.
Since the adhesive wouldn't stick, I used a heavy duty stapler.  This will hold it in place until I can get the 1/2 in. sheet metal screws.

Each stair tread is about 17 in. long and  4 inches wide.  The width of my tire was 1 1/2 inches.  You can see where I've cut it to width in  picture #  one. The length would not cover the entire circumference of the wheel so I had to cut a shorter strip to fill in the gap. If you look closely at picture # three you can see where I abutted the second piece to the first.
It's important that you join the two ends together as close as possible.

I'll be following this up with the screws and removing the staples.  I'll give you an update in a future post.
That's it***

Friday, May 20, 2016

Beads, glass, keys, trinkets????

What do you do with all of the beads, broken jewelry and other trinkets in your craft stash? This is what I did.The inspiration(below) came from Crafts by Amanda   to which I subscribed for future inspirational ideas.
Copied from Crafts by Amanda

Just about all of the "stuff" I have was given to me. Once friends and acquaintances know that you enjoy crafting from "junque" (that's the fancy spelling) you will get all kinds of goodies whether you want them or not. Below is a sample of some of those goodies.
There's broken jewelry, plastic beads, glass marbles, keys, lenses from glasses,earrings.
Those paper clips are good for keeping beads in place.

The cascades are done and ready to be attached to the pitcher. I didn't want to use my store bought jump rings so I made my own from wire I already had.

I really wanted a metal tea pot or coffee pot for the cascades to hang from. Thrift stores are not as thrifty as they once were. What I wanted cost $6.99. I bought the pitcher you see for $2.99 and also got a seniors discount since it was seniors day.

The paint was left over from a 75 cent vase I'd sprayed to look like mercury glass

I had to sand it a bit so that the paint would adhere.

I'm pleased with the paint job though it didn't come out with a mirrored finish. I realized afterwards that the mirrored finish would only work on glass. (Duh?)

It reminds me of a vintage milk pitcher. I sprayed a top coat of lacquer on it also. I expect it to rust and age after being out in the weather and that will only add to the character of it.

Time to put in the holes. I probably didn't have the right bit for the drill, so I made pilot holes and then finished by using a long screw, screwing it in until  I had a decent hole and then unscrewing it counter clockwise. Thank goodness for cordless drills. I didn't soften the holes so anyone touching it may get a cut. But, no one is supposed to be examining it anyway.
I have five  holes but seven bead cascades. This is where you ask me, "How do you spell lazy?"

Yes, I know the bed needs to be weeded but that's not the focus right now.

I expect  the neighborhood cats to tear it down. It will have lasted for a short while.
That's it ***

Sunday, May 8, 2016


Streaming TV

In my quest to get free TV and rid myself of pay TV, I bought a ROKU streaming stick.

Before you give me advice on the many antennae, converter boxes and etc., let me stop you and tell you I've tried them all or investigated the possibility. None of them work to get ALL of the local stations. That's all I really want is the free stuff that we were all once entitled too.

You'd think that by paying for the local stations that would qualify me for each local station's sister station such as channels 10, 10.1, 10.2.  But no, I only get one of them.

I've watched HULU and YouTube on my desktop, for free. I wanted to take it to another level and watch those stations along with others that can be streamed through ROKU on my flat screen.

 Notice from the box all of the stations you can stream with the streaming stick. There are even more that you don't see on the box.
BUT, KNOW THIS, you must pay a monthly fee just like you do with cable, DISH,  DirecTV and any other(s) I failed to mention.

There's a free movie channel known as CRACKLE.
It's true name should be CRAP because that's what it is.  Crackle showed me  about 20 minutes of a movie before it went to commercial. I watched five ads. Three of them were the same ad. When Crackle proceeded to show me a sixth ad, I turned it off.  It was as if they were trying to hypnotize me into buying that particular product by continuously showing it to me. If I want to watch a bunch of commercials, I'll just watch regular TV.   You get what you pay for and in this case I didn't pay so I got nothing,

   If I watch vintage TV programs on HULU on my desktop, it's free, yet I can't watch the freebies through the streaming stick. I must register and pay for HULU.

The only thing I was able to get for free with clarity was YouTube. I was able to watch through ROKU the same things I watch on my desk top. The disadvantage with YouTube and ROKU is the inability to read the information (i.e. Subscribe, Show More,Views, Share,  Comments) that's beneath the movie before you watch it, to determine if you want to watch  it at all.  I was willing to accept that.

Deciding which vintage movie to watch from YouTube using the ROKU streaming stick on the flat screen.    
Overall, I'd have to say, ROKU  does what it professes. If you want more you  pay to play.

P.S.   If you're wondering why the flat screen isn't flat and at an angle, it's because it's housed in a niche, not on a swivel stand and it's a pain to turn it around to unplug DISH and plug in ROKU.  Yes, it's a pain but things could be worse.

That's All***

Monday, May 2, 2016

Kansas City, Missouri part 2

K.C. Missouri
         Just the Pictures Folks. If you want to know details, click on the links.

Kaufman Memorial Garden

AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY displays inside the museum. Lincoln School

Kansas City Chiefs stadium

Thomas Hart Benton mural over archway in Truman Library
Helzberg Hall     inside Kaufman Performing Arts Center
Atrium of the Kaufman Performing Arts Center
Muriel Kaufman theater inside the Kaufman Performing Arts Center

Muriel Kaufman Theater

Lunch at Rozzelle Court inside Nelson-Atkins Museum.

That's it ***

Kansas City, Missouri part 1

 Kansas City, Missouri

This is my second time traveling with Road Scholar. What attracts me to their tours is so much of it is all inclusive. Food, lodging, gratuities, and fees for lectures, guides and sight visitations. I only needed to arrange travel to get there and get back.

 I'm only listing some of the activities not all. I enjoy knowing the agenda has been planned and I only need to turn up. The event began Sunday, April 17, 2016.

Here's Monday's schedule
Civil War Presentation with Randy Mullis
Winstead's Restaurant
Blue Ribbon Guide Walking Tour
Truman Presentation with Ray Starzman
Dinner @ hotel
Jazz Lecture- David Basse

I was still jet lagged and so after breakfast I went back to my room and didn't reappear until it was time for the jazz lecture. I bought one of David Basse's CDs and I have been playing it repeatedly since I've returned home.

Union Station

There's been a rivalry between Bryant's and Gates as to who has the best bbq. The rivalry began between the two when one of Bryant's close business partners took his secrets to Gates and began working for the competition. Both men have since passed on but the businesses continue.

BBQ was good at both places. 
We had ribs, sausage without a casing and slaw at Bryant's. The slaw was sweet and salty. Delicious.
Arthur Bryant


Gates served us ribs,baked beans, smoked turkey, sausage and burnt ends. Both Bryant and Gates are known for their burnt ends. It's a chewy smoked part of the beef that's absolutely delectable. They are the only two places that really serve it. Others may profess to have burnt ends but they're not the real thing.
 Gates is still family owned and has multiple locations. They own quite a bit of the property in the location of their original store. One building is used to manufacture their own bbq sauce.


Two hour  Black History bus tour with Eric Stafford Black history historian. This man was a wealth of information. I wanted to hear and see even more after the tour. 


End Part 1