Category Archives: Projects

Sweet and Spicy Wings

Sweet and Spicy Wings

When it comes to dinner sweet and spicy wings are usually requested; however, I prefer to make these every so often. Anytime I host an party or attend one these wings are always a party hit. I do love my weber!

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Boogie Blue Inline Water Filter

Boogie Blue Inline Water Filter

My inline water filter from Boogie Brew came in the other day and I will be installing it tomorrow to save my soil’s biology. I am so excited! As a reminder the 40% discount is still valid so take advantage while supplies last.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Manual Rainwater Collection

Manual Rainwater Collection

What a beautiful way to start the day. The monsoon hit very well this morning and I scurried out to collect it. I was able to fill two 55 gallon containers within 20 mins. Unfortunately I have not finished the rain gutters so I had to do this manually. Turning and tilting the barrel to align the spout with the stream of the water. Believe you me, one gallon of water weighs approx. 8.34 pounds and at the rate the water was flowing these barrels got heavy quick. Approximately 458 pounds per barrel. Not to mention the rain completely flooded the backyard and softened up the ground quite a bit and that added another level of complexity when I had to move these back to where they were originally stored. Hopefully somewhere in the immediate future I will finally finalize a simple, easy on the eye water collection setup. Hope your day was a festive as ours!

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Drip Irrigation Setup

I thought I would share this in case anyone is interested in setting up a battery operated drip irrigation system. I put together this graphic to help pinpoint each component. It is really simple to do once you understand what components you need. Illustrated is the main portion of the drip system. This should help get you started!

Drip Irrigation

For a complete system you will need:

  • 3/4″ drip tubing
  • 1/4″ drip lines
  • barbs and goof plugs
  • connectors and holder stakes
  • other types of drippers depending on your irrigation needs

While you’re installing a drip system I would recommend adding a boogie brew inline water filter to help reduce/remove chlorine before it reaches your plants. If you use this link you’ll get a 40% discount off your purchase of the filter. I am a fan of John Kohler from Growing Your Greens and with his discount you can get the boogie brew water filter plus a 10 gallon compost tea all delivered for $44. That’s a great price. Take advantage while you can!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

New Stainless Steel Chimney Cap from EggWare


I received my new Stainless Steel chimney from Matt at the other day. If you own a Primo Oval XL and have fallen victim to the factory chimney closing on you when you lift open the lid, then this replacement chimney from EggWare is the answer! It came with a felt gasket to help it fit nice and snug on kamado smokers and grills like the Big Green Egg and Primo. EggWare also sells replacement gaskets should you need one. The fact that the top of the chimney comes off with ease is a major plus as it helps the temperature rise very quickly. Plus the shape of the chimney lid helps prevent water and/or snow from entering the grill when it rains or snows and that’s another win! I live in Arizona so I won’t have to worry about snow but we do get some showers and now I no longer have to worry about that.

020066163563The first thing I did was run over to Lowe’s and picked up one 12 oz can of Rust-Oleum Specialty Semi-Gloss High Heat Ultra paint for $7.29, which will provide a great sheen and protection for my new investment. Here’s the label information in case you’re interested. Before I got to painting I washed and dried my new chimney. Then I tossed on some latex gloves to prevent from transferring any oils from my fingers on to the surface of the chimney. Then I applied the first coat. Since the paint was freshly applied I had to let it dry for an hour before I could apply a second coat. Once the second coat dries I will let it sit for a few days before I attach it to the XL and cure it. I am extremely excited and cannot wait to start using this new chimney. My days of having to re-adjust after every lid opening are now a thing of the past! I’ll post a follow up once I get this new awesomeness attached and cooking (literally!).

Happy Grilling!

Updated 2013-07-14

Well it looks like I don’t have to let it sit for a few days according to the label information.

7-14-2013 8-59-10 AM

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Simple Outdoor Patio Table

I’ve been busy trying to reconfigure our backyard and especially our patio area but there’s so much to do it was difficult to decided where to start. Finally I decided that we need a fairly good size outdoor table which I hope will help everything else fall into place in terms of making it more inviting. So here’s my sketchup plans of my Simple Outdoor Patio Table. I tried to keep the cuts to a minimum to keep this as simple as possible.

Simple Outdoor Patio Table-001

Tagged , , , , ,


Well I have been researching a lot more about gardening and built a raised bed, a vertical herb planter and have been relatively successful with it. I researched aquaponics for some time and have since picked up a 275 gallon “food grade” IBC tote which can and will double as a grow bed and a fish tank. 


As I was trolling through Lowe’s I found a 36″x24″x8″ HDPE mixing tub for just over $12 in the concrete section which I will turn into a grow bed. The volume is 6912 which is 4 cubic feet of grow space. It can hold roughly 30 gallons of water.


I also picked up a few couplings and other pvc pieces (some from the electrical dept and others from plumbing) to start the bell siphon but Home Depot seems to have more sizes available. I’ll piece together a part list fully detailed with part numbers and such to make it easier in case anyone is looking to start an aquaponics system with minimal funds. Well it is off to work on the bell siphon.

Happy Father’s day!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

52 Week Savings

Are you participating in a 52 Week Savings game? I figured I would draft up a cheat sheet to help others stay on course. In addition I also calculated a second version called “Double The Week” which is a bit more aggressive but doable nonetheless, depending on your competitive spirit. If you are participating I would like to know how you are keeping focused and how are you reminding yourself.

I’m a database administrator so I decided to set up an agent job that runs every Wednesday and executes a procedure that calculates the week number, deposit amount and then it sends me a reminder via email after it records it to my [Weeks] table. I also added another table called [NotifyList] which allows me to add additional email addresses so the notifications can be sent out to my wife or other addresses I use, which hits my cell phone. It’s pretty straightforward and has been working fine. If you would like to download a copy of my little illustration just click on the image below.

Well happy savings!

52 Week Savings

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Home Gym – Push Up and Dip Station

I think I finally reached a realization that I don’t need a membership to a gym and I don’t need to be in a gym for that matter to get a great workout. After some discussions with my wife, quite a bit of research on the net and some very inexpensive purchases from Craigslist I have a solid start. I will use sand to build weights in five-to-ten pound increments, nylon duffel bags to use as dumbbells and as Bulgarian bags. I’ll piece together a pull-up bar made from galvanized steel and attach it to the beams of our attic. That’s just a few things I have lined up, but for the sake of this post I will construct a horizontal push-up and sip station out of six 2x4x96 pine. Below is the cut list and following that is the actual plans. I’ll follow-up later once I have it assembled and post pics of the finished product. Just keep in mind I am 5’8″ so I am not tall. This is sized for someone under 6′.

Push Up-Dip Station Cut List

Push Up Dip Station

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Eco Friendly Disinfectant

Deciding to be more Eco aware we searched the web for Eco friendly alternatives for disinfectants. We actually found this idea on pinterest and used peels from sour oranges given to us by “Sour Orange Steve”.

He literally has 1000s of them and offered them for free via Craigslist post. My wife purchased a case of quart size mason jars and a 1 gallon container of distilled white vinegar. The mason jars and distilled vinegar set us back a whopping $12 and we managed to fully fill nine jars.

We first started by cleaning the oranges, then proceeded to cut them in half and squeezed out the juice into a large bowl. I figured I could save the juice by freezing it so I can use it to make Moroccan chicken wings at a later time.

After squeezing out all of the juice my sister and I scrapped out the fruit to uncover the whites of the grind. Then we cut the peels into halves then quartered them. We stuffed as many as we could into each of the mason jars and then filled them with white distilled vinegar. We made sure to leave room on top to be able completely cover the peels with vinegar.

Make sure you turn the jars upside down once you have the lids on to release any trapped air. That will reveal a need for more vinegar. Again fill with vinegar to cover all of the orange peels. Once that’s done let them steep for two weeks.

After two weeks strain the solution into a spray bottle using 1 part water to 1 part solution. Essentially half water-half solution. You should end up with an Eco friendly disinfectant with a beautiful citrus fragrance. I’ve been told this works with lemons, limes and some have even added vanilla and cinnamon. I was also told that apple cider vinegar is not recommended as it attracts insects. I’m just starting out so I’ll experiment with other scents at a later time and definitely after I start to use the final product.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,