Saturday, July 27, 2013

Creative Memories Update

So, I don't really push my Creative Memories stuff here.  I'm really just not a pushy person.  However, in light of recent events over the last few months with them, I figured I'd share some information about what I know.  I'm just a lowly base-level consultant.  I do it because I love the albums and tools.  I haven't found any that are at the same quality level out there.
In any case, here's what I know as of this point:
The last chance ordering period ends July 31st.  This is for albums, pages, page protectors and tape runner refills. (These items are made in-house and they will make as many as are ordered.  It will take weeks or even a couple months for them to get everything out)
August 9 is the day when persona orders need to be in their hands.
August 21 is the last day to use product certificates, as well as the last day to order any other while supplies last product
August 31 is the day that all personal consultant sites, as well as will be taken offline
September 23 is the last day for any orders in the digital center
A new company is relaunching on November 1.  What this company will have for a product line has yet to be made known.
Now you know what I know.  I don't push it here, but if you need any product, there's a link to my site over on the sidebar on the right.  I'm still trying to determine if I'm going to stick with it when the relaunch happens.  Only time will tell.
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Friday, July 26, 2013

How to get melted crayon out of clothes

Or, more appropriately titled... "How I spent one of my vacation days!"

So, it's been a while!  I have a good excuse though.  I've been on vacation and absolutely LOVING it!  Granted, I love any day that I don't have to go to work, but vacation is extra special!  It's been busy and full, and I wouldn't change anything about it.  Well, maybe how I've spent today, but it's entirely my fault.
I finally got around to doing a load of laundry (remember, the chore that I hate?!), and when I went to pull my clothes out of the dryer this morning, I was horrified to find that I had washed and dried 5 crayons with my very full load of laundry.  That's what I get for not checking my pockets!  Both the dryer and my clothes were covered with crayon wax.  It is somewhat fitting with the streak of bad luck we've been having around here this week.  I was able to find clothes to wear today fortunately, and hubby spent some time doing a google search to see what we could do to salvage my clothes.

There were a variety of solutions that we found, and I wasn't looking forward to spending the whole day scrubbing all of my clothes to get the wax out.  I decided to try a few different solutions to see what was going to work the best, since I had a lot of clothes to work on!  I also wanted to use what I happened to have on hand here at home.  I didn't necessarily want to run out to the store.  We have plenty of cleaning supplies here.  It's just a matter of finding the right combination!
First step was to get the dryer cleaned out.  That was straight-forward, easy!  All we did for that was to clean up the big pieces of crayon that were still left in there (and also on the lint trap).  Once that was done, we ran the dryer on the highest heat setting for about 20 minutes.  I checked it after 10, because I was still sorting through my clothes at this point.  When the wax had softened enough, it was just a matter of wiping it out with a paper towel.
The next step was working on my clothes.  I'll preface these solutions with the disclaimer that I'm lazy and impatient!  Anything that took a ton of elbow grease didn't rank too highly in my efforts to continue!

First up was using the iron and a paper towel to soak up the wax.  I've heard many wonderful things about this method working out wonderfully.  Unfortunately, it didn't work worth a darn for me!  It melted the wax a little, but didn't do anything to draw it out of the clothes.  I don't know if I didn't have the setting right on my iron, or if I didn't iron long enough, but it just didn't work.
Next up was trying the baking soda/water paste mixture.  I mixed some up, and spread it on the clothes with a toothbrush and it was a big, fat, flop!  Moving on...
In several of the solutions I found, I was dumbfounded to see WD-40 was a solution.  In my head, I assumed that the stuff would leave a grease stain.  I tried it on a sock, and to my surprise it actually somewhat worked!  Spray a bit of WD-40 on the stain and let it set for a few minutes.  The next step said to rub laundry detergent into the clothing as well and then rinse it out.  Well, I didn't have the laundry soap right next to me, and I wasn't too keen on my clothes smelling like a garage!  The sock felt greasy and smelled quite strongly even after rinsing it out a lot.  Nevermind the fact that it was going to take at least 5 cans of the stuff to go through all my clothes!  I imagine that if I would have had the laundry soap next to me it may have helped with the smell and the greasy feeling.

The winner for me was to grab a bin, fill it up with HOT water, and mix in half a cup of borax and some vinegar.  (I happened to have some borax sitting around from an activity I did with the boy a couple weeks ago...remind me to post about that sometime soon!)  The first batch of clothes was a test run to see if it would work.  I threw in a few articles of clothing and let them soak for a while.  I think it ended up being around 45 minutes because I had to wash the dishes to make room in the sink!  I knew that borax is a good cleaner...I use it in my laundry detergent, and I don't have dirty clothes.  I was astonished at how well soaking my clothes in this worked though!  All it took was a tiny bit of scrubbing with a toothbrush and it mostly came right out!  The blue crayon was a bit more stubborn, but the orange pretty much disappeared!  I will say that the crayon didn't come completely out of my socks and underwear.  Truth be told, I'm not too entirely concerned about that.  No one ever sees them, so if they've still got a couple of stains on them I'm not going to sweat it.

Next step was to put the clothes all back in the wash.  Wash on the hottest setting and then inspect each piece before putting them in the dryer.  I used double the amount of detergent that I use for a normal load for good measure too.  A few clothes had to go back in through the wash a second time because the crayon didn't all come out.  Out of a whole load of clothes, I'm not going to complain about not being able to salvage all but a couple of things. (Picture of the after of a few clothes will be coming later)
In most of the solutions that I had found, it seemed that people had top loading washing machines, making it easier to let things soak.  Since I've got a front loader, it's a little more difficult to do that, hence the bin for soaking the clothes in.
Thank you, google for your many solutions for everything!  Here's another listing to add to the "how to get crayon out of clothes" search!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Counting to 100 flashcards

Who would have known that a boy would be so excited about flashcards?!  Since he's going into kindergarten in the fall (sniff, tear!), we've been working on some kindergarten prep workbooks over the summer to keep up with what he learned in preschool this last year.  While the workbooks have been great, I felt like we needed something that was smaller and that we could just pull out at any time.
I decided last night to make up some flashcards real quick, counting 1 to 100.  There was nothing difficult about this project at all...a stack of 3x5 cards, a keyring, a hole punch, and some markers!  In addition to just writing the numbers on each card, I also spelled them out.  Figured we'd keep up on the letter recognition as well as number recognition!
For about half an hour last night, all he wanted to do was go through the flashcards!  We counted to 100, spelled out a few numbers, and then had him identify random numbers.  When he was done and it was time for bed, he asked if he could take them to his room and put them by his bed so that they "could watch him sleep".  (There's a backstory to the objects to watch him sleep that I'll tell another day!)  While in the car this morning on the way to swim camp, he begged to take the flashcards along and was shouting out numbers to me the whole ride!  At some point, I'll let him practice writing his numbers on the cards too.  Here's to keeping up with education over the summer!