Are you a weekend gardener?

Now that warmer weather is here, I find I spend more time out in my yard and garden. Finding natural and safe products can sometimes be an issue, but I have found some safe and affordable lawn and gardening care alternatives using my everyday household products.

For killing weeds.
I mix 1/4 cup Tough & Tender with 1 gallon vinegar and two cups salt. Apply to trouble spots. For stronger, hardier weeds I add 1/2 Lemon Bright dish soap. The soap is needed to break through the weed’s protective coating.
Here is a “how-to” video: https://youtu.be/tINbAl37hvo

Ridding the lawn of gnats, “no seeums” and mushrooms.
Spray the lawn with a diluted mixture of Tough & Tender in a lawn sprayer unit. It will kill the little gnats as well as mushrooms that grow in your yard. (Tough & Tender is my go-to cleaning product, It’s one thing we are never out of there are so many uses for it!)

Killing “Yard Bugs”.
Mix 1 cup of Lemon Brite dish soap and 1 cup of pre-mixed Breath-Away Mouthwash into a 20 gallon hose-end sprayer and soak your lawn, garden beds and trees to the point that the fluid is running off. Bugs HATE it!

Killing Ants.
Spray concentrated Pre-spot Plus on areas ants congregate (don’t use on wood). For heavier concentrations and black ants, combine 1 ounce of MelaMagic and 1 ounce of Sol-U-Mel in a 16 ounce spray bottle and fill with water.

Armyworm caterpillars.
Mix 1/2 cup of MelaMagic in two gallons of water to spray. Spray cocoon, nest, and any webs you see. This will also help cutdown on succeeding generations as well as with the ant invasion that follows the armyworms.

All purpose home made spray.
A safe and non-toxic bug spray can be made from a combination of ¼ cup of Sol-U-Mel, five drops of T36-C5, 1 teaspoon of Tough & Tender, and 14 ounces of water. Or you can just get the Natural Insect Repellent. (Which we happen to love!)

National No Dirty Dishes Day

Whether you’re a mother, father, sister, brother, or roommate, no one likes dirty dishes. That is why we’re celebrating National No Dirty Dishes Day today.
It’s probably a holiday most created by an upset parent, spouse or room mate fed up with cleaning up the mess. I’d like to think sinks around the world are rejoicing at the thought of having a light workload and a clear space on today. So keep sinks happy, and do your part by saying, “NO” to dirty dishes.

This is a day that gives us all a break from the regular daily routine. There are two options for this day. You can eat all meals out. If that is possible, would also be a bonus treat. Or, you can use disposable paper plates, cups and silverware. To stay earth friendly, choose ones that are biodegradable, just like my favorite dish detergent, Lemon Bright! I just love a clean sink, don’t you?

National Learn to Swim Day

National Learn to Swim Day is observed annually on the third Saturday in May. This day is dedicated to educating parents and children about water safety. Before Memorial Day Weekend and the start of summer, it is an opportunity for families to learn the importance and benefits of learning to swim. While swimming is enjoyed by all ages the year-round, summer is a time when we take to the lakes, rivers and outdoor pools. Because of the risks involved when one is in the water, safety and knowledge, from the earliest age, is vita

Strength training

Strength training involves using free weights, weightlifting machines, resistance bands, or your own body weight to make your muscles stronger. Lower-body strength training will improve your balance and prevent falls.

Strength training may help you:

  • build and maintain strong muscles as you get older
  • continue to perform activities of daily living, such as carrying groceries or moving furniture
  • keep your bones strong, which may help prevent osteoporosis  and fractures

If you are just starting out, using a weightlifting machine may be safer than dumbbells. As you get fit, you may want to add free-weight exercises with dumbbells.

You do not need a weight bench or large dumbbells to do strength training at home. You can use a pair of hand weights to do bicep curls. You can also use your own body weight: for example, get up and down from a chair.

Strength training may help you build and maintain stronger muscles as you get older.

Proper form is very important when lifting weights. You may hurt yourself if you don’t lift weights properly. You may want to schedule a session with a certified fitness professional to learn which exercises to do and how to do them safely. Check with your health insurer about whether your health plan covers these services.

If you decide to buy a home gym, check how much weight it can support to make sure it is safe for you.

Strength-training tips:

  • Aim for at least two days per week of strengthen-training activities.
  • Try to perform each exercise 8 to 12 times. If that’s too hard, the weight you are lifting is too heavy. If it’s too easy, your weight is too light.
  • Try to exercise all the major muscle groups. These groups include the muscles of the legs, hips, chest, back, abdomen, shoulders, and arms.
  • Don’t work the same muscles two days in a row. Your muscles need time to recover.