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What Is It? Cord Loops

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A continuous cord loop is a length of braided string fused together by heat and with adhesive to create and endless circle of string.

Many different types of window coverings operate with continuous, or endless, loop cord. Cellular/Honeycomb shades, pleated shades, woven wood blinds, Roman shades, roller shades, soft shades and even wood blinds can operate with cord loops.

When your cord loop breaks, it can be frustrating. But purchasing a replacement and installing it can be simple!

First, you’ll want to measure to find the correct thickness of cord loop. Fix My Blinds sells four different thickness of cord loops on our website. Measure the thickness by wrapping the loop around a pen or a pencil ten times. Then, measure the width of those ten wraps while they are on the pen or pencil. Match it to the pictures on our site here.

cordloopcellAfter you determine the thickness of cord loop your window covering needs, it’s now time to measure for the length. Simply fold the loop in half (to mimic a loop), and measure from one end to the next. We sell cord loops in whole foot increments, so you may need to round up or down a bit.

Now, that you’ve gotten the loop, how do you install it? It’s easy! The concept is the same as putting a chain back onto a bicycle. Our YouTube channel is full of instructions for replacing cord loops, as well as many other blind and shade repairs. Check it out here: YouTube.

Need Dinner Quick? Fire Up The Grill!

grillI don’t know about you, but I don’t always have a lot of time to prepare dinner. My priorities when making a meal for my family are speed and nutrition. Healthful foods don’t have to take a long time to prepare. Using your backyard (or counter top) grill is an excellent way to provide quick cooking and nutritious meals in your home!

Try to cook all (or most) of the dishes for the meal on the grill. You can easily grill veggies like corn, asparagus, bell peppers, onions, and zucchini. Give them a brush of olive oil, and place them directly on the grill. Sear them at high heat and then move them to a cooler portion of the grill to cook for a couple of minutes. They tend to cook quickly.

Nearly any type of meat can be cooked on the grill, as well. Here’s a handy cooking guide for how long different types of meats take to cook: Meat Cooking Time Guide

Don’t forget about dessert! Fruits such as peaches, pineapple and watermelon are delicious when grilled and can be a tasty finish to a healthy, grilled summertime dinner!

Southern Living’s Easy Grilling Recipes

 

 

 

 

 

Drying Fresh Herbs: Holding onto Summertime Flavors

dryherbs2-2434558C08_300Summer is the season for everything fresh and delicious! I love to grow herbs, and when fall comes, I want to preserve some of that summertime flavor. Inevitably, the floor in my dining room gets covered with drying herbs. The dry Colorado air doesn’t take too long to take them from fresh to dried. I store mine in small containers in the freezer to use all winter long. Or, if I don’t want to wait for them to dry, I snip them up into small pieces, add a little bit of water and freeze in ice cube trays. It’s easy to drop in a cube or two of herbs when cooking.

I’ve seen some people microwave their herbs to dry them. The instructions for doing that are fairly simple: Place 4-5 branches in the microwave between two paper towels. Microwave on high for 1 1/2 – 3 minutes. Be sure that the herbs are 100% DRY before using the microwave or else the herbs will cook rather than dry.

The traditional way of drying herbs is to lay them out on racks or hang them in bunches from the ceiling. Once dry, use your hands to remove them from the branches and crumble into desired size.Tarragon, bay, mint, lemon balm, lavender, rosemary and small leaved herbs such as thyme take well to air drying, so they are great for beginners.

Dried herbs can be stored for up to one year in an airtight container.

Taste of Home has a great article on this topic here.

 

How Much String Do I Need? Horizontal Blind and Shade Edition

Here’s a good formula you can use to determine how much string you’ll need to restring a horizontal blind or shade:

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This is a generous estimate that allows plenty of string to complete the job. Follow the link below for more measuring instructions:

How Much String Do I Need?

Farmer’s Markets: Best Picks for August

tumblr_nsm6p4NmUo1tg33wpo1_500One of the very best things about summer is all the fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables. My personal favorites are peaches, sweet corn, tomatoes and all of the crispy greens like Swiss chard. A visit to your local farmers market may be in order! To find a farmer’s market in your area, please click the link below:

Find a Farmer’s Market Nearby

Here’s a list of the best produce to look for in August:

Seasonal Veggies Harvested in August: 

Artichokes, Asparagus, Beets, Bell Peppers, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chile Peppers, Corn, Cucumbers, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Onions, Potatoes, Snap Beans, Spinach, Squash, Tomatoes, Zucchini

Seasonal Fruits Harvested in August:                            

Apples, Avocados, Blueberries, Cantaloupe, Fig, Grapes, Honeydew, Lemons, Nectarines, Oranges, Peaches, Pears, Plums, Raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelons

Happy shopping!

 

How Much String Do I Need: Vertical Blinds & Traverse Rods

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Determining the thickness of the string you need is critical, but it is also important to figure out how many feet of string you’ll need to restring your vertical blind or traverse rod.

When restringing vertical blinds and traverse rods, the formula used to estimate the length of string you will need is:

2 x Width + Height = Total Amount Needed

The string is one long piece. Both ends tie off inside the head rail of the track.

This video shows how to restring a standard vertical blind. Your blind may look different or stack differently.

Click here to purchase new string!

How Much String Do I Need? RV Edition

daynightshadeDetermining the thickness of the string you need for a blind repair is critical, but it is also helpful to determine how much string you need length-wise.

When repairing RV Day/Night shades, the formula for estimating the length of string you will need is:

2.5 x Width + Height = String length needed

(String length needed) x (number of strings in the shade) = Total amount of string needed

It’s fine to measure the window opening and not the shade. The shade won’t be larger than your window. Do not measure your old string, and cut the new strings the same length. The lengths never quite turn out right.

Click here to purchase new string!

The video below explains how to measure for the correct length and also shows how to restring the shade:

How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Wood

fastener-sc-02It’s frustrating when you’re trying to reattach something, but the screw hole in the wood is stripped. I had a customer ask me about how to repair this problem, aside from using a larger screw. Below are a few resources that show you exactly how to do this repair. Best of all, the items you need (glue and toothpicks) are items most of us have on hand. I’ve found it is better to pack the hole with wood rather than use wood fillers sold at home improvement stores.

How To Fix A Stripped Screw Hole

DIY Q & A about wooden screw hole repair

Involving Kids in DIY Projects

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                        Me and my son

The other day, I caught my 9-year-old son watching an HGTV program about a couple looking to purchase a mountain home. My son watched the whole episode and had an opinion about which property the couple should purchase. HGTV is probably my favorite TV channel. It provides me with so many ideas for my own home and for my job at Fix My Blinds. We’re big into DIY here, and I am glad my son shows interest in projects.

 

Over the years, my boy has helped me paint rooms, remove wallpaper, repair leaks, change faucets, plant gardens, refinish/repair furniture and make paper crafts. He is always one who wants to see what I am doing and take part. In fact, when it came time to remove the training wheels from his bicycle, he was the one who got the wrench and took them off with little help from me. He embraces the DIY spirit with gusto!

It can be frustrating, at times, to include our kids and grandkids in our projects. They are much slower than we are and aren’t always as neat and tidy as we’d like. But think of all the benefits and lessons we are sharing! Here are a few of my favorite “consequences” of inviting the kids to help:

  1. We can teach our children how things work. Understanding the basic principles of machines, tools, and physics are great!
  2. It teaches our children how to plan projects, research and see something to completion.
  3. I don’t know about you, but I feel a great deal of personal pride when I complete a project and get to show it off. Allowing our children to feel this will foster strong confidence in their abilities and ideas.
  4. It helps us grow in our patience. As the saying goes, you only really know how to do something well once you can teach another to do it. It stretches us as adults to really hone our skills and crafts.
  5. At the end of the day, life is about relationships. Working on projects together is a great way to build strong relationships with our kiddos. These memories will last a lifetime.

Go work on a project this weekend! Invite your son, daughter, grandchild, niece, nephew, or neighbor kid along. You’ll both be better for it!

 

Which Wand Do I Need?

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You’re missing a wand from a blind in your home. Maybe it broke or wasn’t there when you moved in. How do you figure out which wand you need when there isn’t one left to match? Follow these easy steps to find out!

  1. What type of blind do you have? Vertical blinds and draperies will use fiberglass or metal wands. Horizontal blinds (wood, faux wood, mini and Venetian blinds) will use plastic or wooden wands.
  2. How does the wand attach to the blinds? If there is an open hook, just about any wand will fit, but if it is a closed circle attachment, make sure the tip of the new wand has a hook or compatible attachment.
  3. How long does the wand need to be? Make sure everyone who will be operating this blind can reach the wand. You may like a longer wand if the blind is located behind a larger piece of furniture.
  4. Which color is best? Usually wands match the blinds themselves. Or, clear is always a good option!

Please visit Fix My Blinds to browse and purchase any wands that you may need! 

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