How I Improved My Glasses

I have long eyelashes.

How long?

When I got my first pair of glasses in second grade I trimmed them!

(It broke Mom’s heart.)

My lashes are long and curly and Mom always said they were my best feature. But, when I got glasses they got in the way. I kept ripping the glasses off to remove the spider I saw only to find it was just my eyelashes.

The problem got worse when I started wearing makeup. If I didn’t allow the mascara to dry completely, I would find myself looking through bars! Contacts solved that problem for several years until the ophthalmologist told me I could never wear them again because of allergies!

I had a terrible time picking out glasses frames. The first pair I chose had an opening between the front and sides of the glasses. My hair kept getting trapped in the opening. Ouch.

The next pair was too small for the dreaded bifocals. I tried semi-rimless frames, but they magnified any dark circles under my eyes because I am near-sighted.

The last time I purchased frames, I made sure they would mask those dark circles. I forgot that I had to have a nose piece on my glasses because of my long eyelashes. (The spiders were back.)

At the beginning of the summer, I went back to the eye doctor and asked for help. They tried adding little nose pads but they were flesh-colored and my glasses are black.

New Glasses "How I improved my glasses" frugalfish.org

We found silicone nose pads in a larger town but they didn’t stay on! I went back for more and they told me they no longer make them! My glasses cost $500.00 because of my prescription and I did not want to buy another pair.

Glasses with silicone pads "How I improved my glasses" frugalfish.org

Then I had a brainstorm – Bumpers!

Bumpers "How I improved my glasses" frugalfish.org

I had a package already that I used to keep the keyboard pedal from slipping away. They are larger than nose pads and they pushed the frames away from my lashes. The silicone keeps the frames from sliding down my nose on warm days. I have several more in the package and don’t worry about losing one. They keep my glasses firmly in place and that helps me to look out of the correct part of the glasses.

Glasses with Bumpers on them "How I improved my glasses" frugalfish.org

My Frugalfish Tip is to look around, you may have just the thing to solve a problem already on hand.

Next week is my birthday – I may take the day off – or the month. Lol

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Ottoman Rescue

I chose this ottoman with my granddaughter in mind. I used it to store her toys. But it became a problem when all the family was here. She would want to get in the ottoman to get her toys and someone would be using it! I moved her toys to bookshelves hidden behind a curtain under the TV, see here. Now I store my quilts in it.

This ottoman fits perfectly between the two reclining seats on my couch. If not in the center, it gets bumped when someone reclines. It has serviced us well for a few years and started showing its age.

I didn’t want to replace it yet and decided to do a little cosmetic surgery. You can see where the vinyl has worn away on some of the corners.

Damaged Ottoman "Ottoman Rescue" frugalfish.org

I have a love/hate relationship with the secret weapon I used. I love it for repairs and labeling but hated it when my kids got a hold of it. I still have dressers with autographs and pictures on the backs. (Like I would never see them!)

My secret weapon worked perfectly. It looks like new again!

Repaired Ottoman "Ottoman Rescue" frugalfish.org

Here’s my weapon – a Red Sharpie Pen! It “stained” the white material where the vinyl had rubbed off. I colored the worn spots and wiped off the excess with a paper towel as I went along. I let it dry a day before using it.  (Hint: you can use “Armorall” to extend the life of your vinyl furniture.)Red Sharpie Pen "Ottoman Rescue" frugalfish.org

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Artwork Repair

I recently read of a lady who kept her Easter decorations up until “Ascension Day” 40 days later. She must not decorate with any Easter Eggs. I won’t leave mine up that long but I decided to show you something before it all goes back in the box.

Easter Vignette "Lilac Easter" frugalfish.org

At the end of the hall, I had a vignette with a picture of Christ praying in the Garden of Gethsemane in the center. I even posted a photo of it. What you don’t see is the damage. It is an antique picture mounted on a slab of wood. There are tears in a few spots and a chunk was missing.

 

 

I almost gave it away a few years ago but kept it because I liked it. I got out my package of 100 markers and found shades that closely matched the damaged areas. I just colored the exposed wood with the marker. You can see the damage in this closeup photo.

Damaged Picture, "Artwork Repair" frugalfish.org

No one noticed the repair, even when they had to look behind it for an egg in my “Easter Egg Treasure Hunt!”

Related Post – Repairing Bleach Spots

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After

My Facebook feed, after last week’s post, proved my point. The first few comments were from those looking through a camera lens.Then everyone tried guessing what was different.

That’s when the magnifying glasses came out. None of the guesses were correct! (Not even my family members who live here guessed correctly!) One even decided she needed new glasses!

The problem was everyone was studying the “after” picture, not the “before” picture! I included a link to the “before” picture, but that didn’t help.

Here is my kitchen “before.”

New Kitchen "New Kitchen for Five Bucks" frugalfish.org

Do you see anything that could be improved? Here is my kitchen “after.”

My kitchen "The big Picture" frugalfish.org

Since I made you wait a week, I will tell you. I touched up the paint on the back of the stove. It was a glaring flaw to me but not to anyone else!

We see the flaws, our friends see the kitchen. If you are using your house as a reason not to entertain, forget it. Your friends will never see the flaws that you see. But if something bugs you, fix it!

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The Big Picture

How do you view your home?

  1. Through rose-colored glasses?
  2. Through a camera lens?
  3. Through a magnifying glass?
  4. Through a microscope?

When I took the photo of my kitchen cabinets after their cosmetic makeover, one thing was glaring at me. It was horrible, I was sure everyone would see it and comment.

No one noticed.

Not one.

Obviously, everyone was looking at the picture differently than I did. Those who use rose-colored glasses see everything as perfect. They overlook flaws and clutter. We do the same thing when we walk by the pile of papers on our desk and ignore it.

Those who look through a camera lens are seeing the big picture. The flaws are there, but they don’t mention them. That is how most people look at our homes. They see the pile of paper but overlook it.

We tend to look at our homes through a magnifying glass. We enlarge the flaws until those are the only things we are looking at. Through a magnifying glass, the pile of paper is spilling over the desk onto the floor. We make it a bigger deal than it is.

A microscope enlarges bacteria, and other things, that are not clear to the naked eye. One who looks at your home through a microscope will see the paper as a pile full of allergens. They look for dirt and expect to find pathogens lurking there.

To see your rooms the way most see it, take a picture of it. Study the photo. If there is anything that looks like it could use a little TLC, fix it!

That is what I did. It didn’t take any money, or elbow grease, and I only spent 5 minutes fixing it. I wonder if anyone will even notice the difference?

My kitchen "The big Picture" frugalfish.org

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Ants in Winter

Proverbs 6:6-8 The Folly of Idleness

Go to the ant, you sluggard!
    Consider her ways and be wise.
Which, having no guide,
    overseer, or ruler,
provides her bread in the summer,
    and gathers her food in the harvest.

The Holy Bible, Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Published and distributed by Charisma House.

Ants give us a great example in the summer, but I wondered, “What do ants do in the winter?”

  1. Seek warm places.
  2. Draw closer to their family.
  3. Seal the door.
  4. Eat less.
  5. Slow down.

terro.com/where-have-all-the-ants-gone

Ants have one of three roles 1) gather food, 2) repair or build the nest, and 3) feed and clean the young (larvae). (Those that gather food are the ones that die the quickest.)

I have a warm home and we are spending time with our family. Although, I could sew or read Facebook in the living room while the guys watch the ever present ball game. That way only one room would be lit!

As for sealing the door, it is insulated and I use a door draft stopper. I do need to eat less and slow down. (Nothing slows us down more than an ice storm like we had on Monday. Everyone wants to stay home!)

But, I got to thinking about the repair and building of the nest. I decided there are some repairs that are especially suited to winter. Take my flag pole.

October flag, "October Birthday Decorations" frugalfish.org

When David brought in the flag pole with the Christmas flag, the knob on the end fell off. I decided that flag needed some help. I glued the end back on and used wood filler to fill in the cracks.

Glue and wood filler used on flag pole "Ants in Winter" frugalfish.org

Then I painted it with exterior primer and gave it two coats of exterior paint.

Flag Pole "Ants in Winter" frugalfish.org

It looks like a new flag pole, but it is just repaired and repainted. Are there any “repairing projects” that you put off last summer? Now may be the best time to do them!

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Still Learning from Mom

I almost threw it away several times. It was a wide pink bow with an ivory lace overlay that at one time was attached to a barrette. I probably wore it in my hair a few times back in the 80’s. The barrette was long gone and I put the bow in my bag of miscellaneous ribbons, see here.

Mom called after a disaster with her favorite jacket. She noticed a spot on it and tried to clean it off with a wet wipe. It changed the color of the dye on that spot. She had a rust-colored spot on her tan jacket.Rust colored stain, "Still Learning From Mom" frugalfish.org

She knows I enjoy sewing, see here, and asked me if I could sew a piece of lace over the spot. We went through my collection of lace and didn’t find anything that was wide enough. Then I remembered the pink barrette.

I took the bow apart and removed the ivory lace. I laid it over the buttons on the jacket and found it was long enough. It was also wide enough to cover the discolored spot.

A week or so later, I turned on a movie and sewed the lace on the jacket by hand. I cut tiny slits in the center of the lace at each button and eased the buttons through the slits. I tucked the ends under and that piece of lace was the perfect length. It took me the entire movie to hand sew the lace on and ease the buttons through the slits, but it was a labor of love. After all, she labored to give me life!Tan Jacket with lace accent, "Still learning from Mom" frugalfish.org

I learned to never use a baby wipe or wet wipe on stained clothing! It is better to use cold water or just wait until you get home and can treat the stain properly.

See, I’m still learning from my Mom! Save those pieces of lace! You never know when it will come in handy.

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Block That Standby Light on DVD Player

I like it dark in our bedroom. I mean, pitch black. I have black, energy-efficient, light-blocking drapes and mini-blinds that I close. I have a piano book on its side in front of the TV to block the red “standby light” at its base. I turned the phone sideways to keep the standby light from shining toward the bed.

Our satellite box faces the black curtains. When it faced our white walls I would be awakened by a flash of light at 2:30 am when the updates arrived. Now the light shines into the dark curtains and is not reflected back to the bed.

My husband also likes a deep, dark bedroom. Before he turns in, he throws a black cloth over the radio alarm clock to block the glow from the time.

Imagine my disgust, when I moved a DVD player into the bedroom. It has a bright, red, standby light that is piercing. I tried duct tape, but that red light penetrated through it.Red Standby Light on DVD Player

I came up with a different solution…

Aluminum Foil Tape

Plumbers use this “peel-off tape” to block gaps in furnaces and air conditioner units. I used it around all the seams on my heat ducts and to secure the pipes under my registers to the floor.Aluminum Foil Tape on DVD Player

Now it has a new use…light blocking. I cut a tiny square off of one corner and taped it over that standby light. It worked. Not a red glow came through and I could get a good night’s sleep.No Light on DVD Player

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Repair Wheeled Desk Leg

Of all the computer desks we bought, this was my favorite. Instead of a keyboard drawer it has a nesting extension that rolls out. Unfortunately, one leg kept bending under.

It ended up in storage for a few years and I got it out when my daughter moved out. I finally took the broken leg completely apart. The nuts, that the screws were to join, had come out of the leg into the framework of the extension. No matter how much we tightened it, the leg was just barely hanging on.

I took it all apart, glued the nuts back into the leg and put a dab of glue on the screw before I inserted them. That leg is solid now.

The wheel? Not so much.

The rubber had come off of my desk leg wheel.

The rubber had come off of my desk leg wheel.

Then I remembered how I fixed the feet that kept falling off of the keyboard bench, see here. I got out my thickest rubber band and cut it open.

I slid the rubber “tire” off of the wheel and tied the rubber band around the wheel.

Rubberband tied around wooden wheel.

Rubber band tied around wooden wheel.

Then I slipped the “tire” back on. Now it is as solid as the leg and I feel like I have a new computer desk!

Repaired Wheeled leg

Repaired Wheeled leg

No Matter Where You Go, You Are Always There

I used to think “home” was where ever my family was. First “home” was where ever Mom and Dad were. Then it was where my husband was, followed by any place our children were with us.

Then my health deteriorated and I became housebound. My life stopped, but may family’s lives did not. My husband still had to go to work and the kids still had to go to school. There were still ball games, concerts, doctor appointments, and I missed most of them.

I started planning special things to do when I was home alone in the evening after being home alone all day.

  1. I made a quilt out of my oldest son’s tee shirts.
  2. I made a quilt for the baby shower of my granddaughter.
  3. I made a shadow box filled with awards from my husband’s high school days.
  4. I made a shadow box of awards from my youngest son’s high school days.
  5. I restored 2 foot high cement penguins.
  6. I painted the embellishments on picture frames.
  7. I restored Aunt Nellie’s frog collection.
  8. I made curtains.
  9. I rearranged furniture.
  10. I rearranged the artwork on the walls.

As I worked on each project, I remembered when the kids were younger. I remembered when the room was a nursery as I sewed curtains for my new office. When my second adult child moved out, I made a quiet place for me separate from the office I share with my husband.

I have learned to enjoy those times when I am home alone.

I didn’t even realize I could paint. There are 3 penguins and at least 10 frogs that prove I can.

Penguin I restored.

Penguin I restored.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of Aunt Nellie's frogs.

One of Aunt Nellie’s frogs.

 

Embellished picture frame I painted.

Embellished picture frame I painted.

 

Another picture frame.

Another picture frame.

 

Tee shirt quilt I made for my son.

Tee shirt quilt I made for my son.