June Boom: Perfect Projects For The Start Of Summer
With the last of the chill chased away, summer is in full swing! The sun is up, school is out, and vacation time is beckoning. But while leisure may be at the top of your list, the advent of the warmest weather season is actually prime time for projects that can enhance your home, keep the kids engaged and active, and maybe even make you a little extra money.
Here are just a few suggestions to spark your summertime ingenuity:
Warm weather draws out insects, but you can help keep bugs at bay with a few simple, all-natural DIY remedies. To combat aphids and spider mites, mix 5 tablespoons of dish detergent with 4 cups of water in a spray bottle and spritz plant leaves lightly. Push a clove of garlic into the soil of your indoor houseplants to repel a variety of crawling or flying insects, including mosquitos. Make a simple trap for gnats and fruit flies by filling a small, shallow dish with apple cider vinegar and a drop or two of dish liquid. Place it near your trash or plants that have been infested to attract – and abolish – the unwelcome invaders.
The idea of a having fresh, homegrown produce at your fingertips is extremely appealing. But maintaining a large vegetable garden can be overwhelming, especially if you’re a horticultural newbie. So, start small by picking three or four easy-to-grow crops like spinach, radishes or zucchini. Limited space? Many veggies such as tomatoes, green beans or peppers grow well in pots or other containers.
Your fridge and freezer work extra hard during the hot summer season. To keep them running smoothly, clean the condenser coils that work to help the unit stay cool by releasing heat from the compressor. Make the job easier by using a vacuum and coil brush to remove buildup of dirt, pet hair and food particles.
With children out of school, a great way to mitigate TV time and media overload is to offer opportunities to create cool things. Grab a bunch of inexpensive white t-shirts, fabric paint or pens, glue and colorful add-ons (beads, sequins, etc.) and have a shirt painting party. Make homemade stepping stones for your walkway with a simple mortar mix, decorations such as shells or marbles and a mold (old pie tins work great). Create a window planter box with multihued flowers or lush green vines.
Taking care of your yard’s irrigation system can help prevent damage to your landscaping and save on your water bill. Program your sprinklers to follow any local water rationing regulations and check for leaks and drips regularly. Not sure what kind of maintenance your system needs? Call in a professional to assess your landscape – many companies offer an initial no-charge consultation.
If you’d like to clear clutter and collect some cash, a yard sale is the way to go. Do a thorough sweep of your house and garage and pile up everything you haven’t used or worn in the past year or two. Put price stickers on everything. This may seem like extra work, but many people are more likely to buy if they don’t have to ask what you’re charging or worry about haggling. You can even “think outside the yard” by extending your sale to e-commerce sites and social media.
Try tackling a few of these projects and enjoy a fun and productive summer season!