Thursday, September 9, 2010

Discount Home Improvement Supplies in Denver

My field trip last Friday was a big success.  I'm very grateful to my friend, Eileen, who joined me and was instrumental in turning me on to many of these places.  We had a fun day except for our run in with salty licorice we bought at a small deli in North Denver.  It turns out that the deli was owned by a Dutch woman and apparently that is how they like there licorice.  I won't be adding that to my list of favorite candies anytime soon.

Here is a list of the places we visited and a few comments about each place.  If you have a favorite place that isn't on my list I'd sure like to hear about it.

Habitat for Humanity Home Improvement Outlets
http://www.habitatoutlet.org/index.html
Habitat outlets are my personal favorites and usually the first place I check when I’m looking for discounted items. I like that my purchase goes towards supporting a cause that is important to me.  I find plenty of things here to use in my classes.  You have to go frequently if you want to take advantage of large quantities or new items.  The inventory changes all the time.

Denver Outlet
70 Rio Grande Blvd.
Denver, CO 80223
303.722.5863

Wheat Ridge Outlet
10625 W. I-70 Frontage Rd N.
(Between Kipling and Ward)
Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
303.421.5300

Kitchen Cabinet Superstore
buynewkitchen.com
Great selection of new, used and discontinued cabinets.  We found 2 sections of cabinets with drawers for our kitchen here that even matched the finish.  Cost was just over ½ the price of unfinished cabinets at home depot.
Friendly, helpful service.
1696 West Evans Avenue,
Englewood, CO 80110-1017
(303) 777-0182

Ron Schrantz Carpets and Flooring
ronschrantzcarpets.com
I had never been here before and I enjoyed the experience.  The staff was friendly and very helpful.  You can find good carpet at a good price.  They have remnants, too and good deals on laminate and hardwood flooring too.
1841 W Evans Ave # A,
Denver, CO 80223
(303) 937-1699 

Mr Breaker
mrbreaker.com
I was so excited to learn of this place.  Thanks to my friend Eileen for sharing this place with me.  If you have an older home with old electrical service panels and breakers, this is the place for you.  They sell re-conditioned and new electrical breakers.  The owners are wonderful people, friendly service that just can’t be matched. 
3423 W 1st Ave,
Denver, CO 80219-1407
(303) 934-4160 

Extra Building Materials
extrabuild.com
This place is a little out of the way and not easy to find but they have just about anything you might want.  If you are in the market for interior trim, doors, windows or miscellaneous building materials you should visit here first.  Plenty of friendly, helpful employees.
400 West 53rd Place
Denver, CO 80216-1625
(303) 296-8090

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Discount Home Improvement Supplies in Denver

My field trip last Friday was a big success.  I'm very grateful to my friend, Eileen, who joined me and was instrumental in turning me on to many of these places.  We had a fun day except for our run in with salty licorice we bought at a small deli in North Denver.  It turns out that the deli was owned by a Dutch woman and apparently that is how they like there licorice.  I won't be adding that to my list of favorite candies anytime soon.

Here is a list of the places we visited and a few comments about each place.  If you have a favorite place that isn't on my list I'd sure like to hear about it.

Habitat for Humanity Home Improvement Outlets
http://www.habitatoutlet.org/index.html
Habitat outlets are my personal favorites and usually the first place I check when I’m looking for discounted items. I like that my purchase goes towards supporting a cause that is important to me.  I find plenty of things here to use in my classes.  You have to go frequently if you want to take advantage of large quantities or new items.  The inventory changes all the time.

Denver Outlet
70 Rio Grande Blvd.
Denver, CO 80223
303.722.5863

Wheat Ridge Outlet
10625 W. I-70 Frontage Rd N.
(Between Kipling and Ward)
Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
303.421.5300

Kitchen Cabinet Superstore
buynewkitchen.com
Great selection of new, used and discontinued cabinets.  We found 2 sections of cabinets with drawers for our kitchen here that even matched the finish.  Cost was just over ½ the price of unfinished cabinets at home depot.
Friendly, helpful service.
1696 West Evans Avenue,
Englewood, CO 80110-1017
(303) 777-0182

Ron Schrantz Carpets and Flooring
ronschrantzcarpets.com
I had never been here before and I enjoyed the experience.  The staff was friendly and very helpful.  You can find good carpet at a good price.  They have remnants, too and good deals on laminate and hardwood flooring too.
1841 W Evans Ave # A,
Denver, CO 80223
(303) 937-1699 

Mr Breaker
mrbreaker.com
I was so excited to learn of this place.  Thanks to my friend Eileen for sharing this place with me.  If you have an older home with old electrical service panels and breakers, this is the place for you.  They sell re-conditioned and new electrical breakers.  The owners are wonderful people, friendly service that just can’t be matched. 
3423 W 1st Ave,
Denver, CO 80219-1407
(303) 934-4160 

Extra Building Materials
extrabuild.com
This place is a little out of the way and not easy to find but they have just about anything you might want.  If you are in the market for interior trim, doors, windows or miscellaneous building materials you should visit here first.  Plenty of friendly, helpful employees.
400 West 53rd Place
Denver, CO 80216-1625
(303) 296-8090 


Do-it-ur-self Plumbing & Heating Supply

plumbdummy.com
If you are in the market for antique plumbing fixtures or need a blue or green toilet or sink you’ll want to check this place out. You will probably find just what you need.  The also have a wide selection of new fixtures and parts.  I didn’t take the time to compare prices but you can always give them a call.
3100 Brighton Boulevard,
Denver, CO 80216
(303) 297-0455 


Lumber Guy
thelumberguy.net 
This place has just about anything you could want from railroad ties to interior trim.  The also had paving stone and blocks the inventory went on and on, it was a little overwhelming.  There were several downsides.  First you’ll want to bring plenty of help, to load whatever materials you are purchasing. Also it was almost impossible to find someone to help us.  Not sure I would make the trip here unless I had a very detailed list of what I needed and it was a large enough quantity to justify the extra headaches.
888 East 50th Avenue
Denver, CO 80216-2009
(303) 979-8823 

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Fall Lawn & Garden Care Tips

This article was provided by Andy Carlson of Ace Hardware - Alameda Station.  
Visit Andy's store at: 
417 South Broadway
Denver, Colorado 80209

It is September and although it can still feel like summer, cooler temperatures are just around the corner.  Here are a few of our best tips for getting your lawn and garden areas ready for Fall and Winter.
 
(1) Aerate your lawn.  This can be done with a simple step-on core aerator but many people hire a service to do it with a gas-powered aerator.
 
(2) Apply a winterizer fertilizer, with weed control if appropriate, to your lawn in September or October.  We recommend great winterizing products from Scott's or Ace that can be applied with a spreader.  If you are over seeding you should not apply a winterizing fertilizer with weed control.  The herbicides in weed control products prevent the seeds from germinating.  Our helpful associates can help you select the right product.  [Pictured:  Ace Green Turf Winterizer 5,000 Sq. Ft. $13.99]
Ace Winterizer 
(3) If your lawn is thinner than you'd like, now is a great time to over seed.  Apply seed evenly with a spreader and follow the watering instructions on your seed package.
 
(4) If you have annual flower beds, remove old plant matter from the garden and add it to your compost bin.
 
(5) Add finished compost to your soil and turn the soil with a pitch fork or rototill the soil.  This will make your Spring planting much easier.
 
(6) Plant Spring flowering bulbs such as tulips, daffodils or flowering onions before the first frost.
 
(7) You can further protect beds in winter by applying mulch.  If you have a mulching leaf vac like the Black & Decker Leaf Hog this is a great way to economically generate your own mulch.  [Pictured: Black & Decker Leaf Hog $54.99]
Leaf Hog 
(8) For perennial beds, remove old stalks and leaves and apply mulch if desired.  Cut roses back 6" - 12" and apply a mound of fresh top soil and mulch around each plant base.
 
(9) By mid-September, make sure you bring-in any houseplants you have allowed to summer outside.  Nighttime temperatures can really dip later in September and snow or frost is definitely possible.
 
(10) Reduce watering of trees and large shrubs in the Fall so they harden-off for Winter.  Once the leaves have fallen, give them a final thorough watering using a deep root waterer.  [Pictured:  Ross Root Feeder $25.99]
 
Root Feeder(11) When the weather turns cold, cover your compost bin with a tarp to prevent compost material from being blown away in winter storms.
 
If you have specific questions about your lawn or garden this Fall, please see David, Betty or Marie in the Lawn & Garden Department or ask any of our helpful associates at Ace Hardware - Alameda Station
 

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Gazebo Project - The End

The Beginning
The End

I promised there would be a celebration and it's finally here.
If you have been following this project and live in the Denver Metro area you are invited to our Labor Day BBQ!
Monday September 6th
12:00 pm - 4 pm
Bring your favorite side dish or dessert to share.
Please send me an email at judybrowne@workshopforwomen.com and I'll send you the address and directions.
I would love to have you see it in it's final form.

Judy Browne

10 Things You Must Know About Bed Bugs

As many of you may be aware there have been a number of news stories both written and on TV about the increase in the incidence of bed bugs in both public areas and homes throughout the U.S. I’m not going to rehash the stuff that was already talked about in the articles but I’ve put links below to a variety of articles and resources.
What I have done, after reading all of this information, is to summarize some of the most important pieces.  If you find yourself in a position of needing to get rid of bed bugs I urge you to spend some time reading the information linked here prior to spending a lot of money on a cure that may not work.
  1. Relax!  A bed bug infestation is NOT a cleanliness issue. Bed bugs can be found in the humblest of homes and the most extravagant mansions.  Any home can become infested.
  2. Try to discover how the infestation may have occurred. This will help prevent future infestations. Possibilities include: recent travel, adjoining apartments/condos which are infested, recent purchase of used furniture or clothing, recent visits to an infested home (sleepovers), library books, recent visit to a public place where you sit or rest for a long time (movie theaters).
  3. Bed bugs do NOT transmit disease.  “Fortunately, extensive testing has determined that bed bugs are incapable of transmitting human pathogens” (Colorado State University).  They feed on human blood, however, and each individual may react differently to a bite. (http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05574.html)
  4. To inspect for bed bugs you must be very thorough, looking for evidence of bed bugs (bites, spotting, cast skins), live adult bed bugs (oval, flat, brown, wingless insects similar to a wood tick), live immature bed bugs (smaller, colorless).   Be sure you not only look in the suspect room but all adjoining rooms, too.Consider having an inspection done by an independent contractor such as the dog described in this article http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_13034075?source=pkg  
  5. A combination of treatments and a systematic method of application are required to completely rid a home of bed bugs and it may take several applications to be successful.  You should also be prepared to quickly respond to any new infestations immediately.  
  6. Treatments: vacuuming, steam, heat, laundering at high temperatures (wash and dry temps), freezing, insecticide application and disposal of articles.
  7. If you are using a professional pest control company be sure they have experience with bed bugs and will be using a combination of treatments as described above, will return for a follow up inspection and offer some type of guarantee. 
  8. Insecticides must be used carefully following the manufacturers directions.  Be especially careful when using insecticides on your mattress or bed.  Some products mention treatment of bedding be sure they are refering to sleeping surfaces for people not just pets. 
  9. A follow up inspection should be performed about 10 days after the initial treatment to assure the bed bugs have been eliminated. Repeat treatments as required until elimination is successful.

News Articles and Reports:
Denver Public Library Story http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/21095953/detail.html
Denver Post Article http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_13034250
Denver Post Article - Dog http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_13034075?source=pkg

General Public Information:
Tri-County Health Department Fact Sheet http://www.tchd.org/pdfs/bed_bugs_fact_sheet.pdf
Denver Public Health Website http://www.denvergov.org/tabid/435054/Default.aspx
University of Minnesota – Information for Travelers http://www.ipmctoc.umn.edu/Travellers_prevent_hitchhiking_bedbugs.pdf
Bed Bug Registry http://bedbugregistry.com/ reports of hotels with bed bug problems

Detailed Inspection and Treatment Information:
Inspection Information http://www.nachi.org/bed-bugs-inspecting-house-herpes.htm
University of Minnesota – Information for Pest Control Companies-very detailed descriptions on how to remove bed bugs.  http://www.ipmctoc.umn.edu/Control_of_bedbugs_in_residences_US_Commercial.pdf
Colorado State University http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05574.html

Insecticides Purchase:

Ace Hardware http://www.acehardware.com/search/index.jsp?kwCatId=&kw=bedbugs%20insecticide&origkw=bedbugs%20insecticide&sr=1 
 
Pest Inspection and Control Experts:

Bed Bug Beagle http://www.bedbugbeagle.com/
Heat Treat Removal http://www.heattreat.biz/
Enviro Pest http://www.enviropest.com/pest-identification/bed-bugs 

Author, Judy Browne is the creator and founder of Workshop for Women. Judy is also a Certified Home Inspector with Pillar to Post-Denver.  Workshop for Women offers fun hands-on classes in basic home improvement skills especially designed for women.  Classes include: Power Tools, Carpentry, Plumbing, Electrical, Drywall Repair and more.  Visit www.workshopforwomen.com for more information about classes or www.pillartopost-denver.com for information about a professional home inspection.  You can also give her a call at 303-284-6354. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Day 23 and 24 - Remove Sod and build raised bed planters

We are finishing up the final touches on the gazebo project which also ended up including doing some landscape work on the back yard.   I posted earlier that we wanted to put in a path from our patio to the gazebo and also some raised bed planters for next year.  My husband is the gardener so those will be for him.  I like to build things but I'm not good at tending to plants, grass and flowers.  I've never found gardening to be relaxing like I hear other people say they do.

Here is a quick summary of the building of the raised bed planters and the path installation.

Raised bed planters
We first had to remove a bunch of grass.  This time we had on our thinking caps and rented a sod cutter.  We were able to remove all the grass we needed in under 2 hours.  The same amount it took us all day to remove when we did it by hand at the beginning of this project.  Who says you can't teach 2 old dogs some new tricks?!
Next it was back to Home Depot for some 6 x 6 x 8 ft lumber to make the planters.  We also arranged to have these delivered...see we learned a lot on this project.  We had to move all of these from the driveway to where we were building the planters...boy were these things heavy.  We used our dolly to move them.  It worked very well.
We built the planters using full length (8 ft) pieces for the long sides and 1/2 length pieces for the ends. We decided to go 4 high because we liked the height better.  It will sure be nice for Bill when he's out there planting and weeding:)  We used 12 inch spikes to connect the layers together.  We used a spade bit to drill some 1/2 inch holes in the top piece prior to driving in the spikes.

It took us most of the day to finish both planters, but compared to building the gazebo it was an easy day.

Day 23 and 24 - Remove Sod and build raised bed planters

We are finishing up the final touches on the gazebo project which also ended up including doing some landscape work on the back yard.   I posted earlier that we wanted to put in a path from our patio to the gazebo and also some raised bed planters for next year.  My husband is the gardener so those will be for him.  I like to build things but I'm not good at tending to plants, grass and flowers.  I've never found gardening to be relaxing like I hear other people say they do.

Here is a quick summary of the building of the raised bed planters and the path installation.

Raised bed planters
We first had to remove a bunch of grass.  This time we had on our thinking caps and rented a sod cutter.  We were able to remove all the grass we needed in under 2 hours.  The same amount it took us all day to remove when we did it by hand at the beginning of this project.  Who says you can't teach 2 old dogs some new tricks?!
Next it was back to Home Depot for some 6 x 6 x 8 ft lumber to make the planters.  We also arranged to have these delivered...see we learned a lot on this project.  We had to move all of these from the driveway to where we were building the planters...boy were these things heavy.  We used our dolly to move them.  It worked very well.
We built the planters using full length (8 ft) pieces for the long sides and 1/2 length pieces for the ends. We decided to go 4 high because we liked the height better.  It will sure be nice for Bill when he's out there planting and weeding:)  We used 12 inch spikes to connect the layers together.  We used a spade bit to drill some 1/2 inch holes in the top piece prior to driving in the spikes.

It took us most of the day to finish both planters, but compared to building the gazebo it was an easy day.