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Home > Car is dead, plus free home improvement, with pics

Car is dead, plus free home improvement, with pics

January 11th, 2016 at 09:34 am

DH's car won't start. It's got 250k miles on it. (a 1997 Honda). It cranks but won't turn over. Yay. I don't know how much it will be to get that fixed, but it's a big cloud of unknown in my already stretched budget. It serves me right. His dad and I were driving around in it at Xmas, telling DH he needed to fix all the things wrong with it. And here we are. Darn it. Stupid thing couldn't wait to break until after the house was paid for????


I'm trying really super duper hard not to spend money unnecessarily. This directly clashes with being stuck inside in winter, which is the season I want to do and complete house projects. So, I'm been looking for cheap and free home improvement projects that improve the look and function of our house. Thankfully, cleaning and organizing are mostly free.

This weekend, I redid the hall closet. It's tiny, with a tiny door, and the kids are still small, so they just throw their backpacks on the doorknob and their coats on the closet floor and call it a day. Um no... It was a mess, first thing you see in the door.

I hung a lower rod for the kids, so they can hang up their own coats. I installed a few hooks on the inside of the door for backpacks, and sorted all the hats, mittens and sunglasses into a shoe holder on the inside of the door. I also put extra backpacks, lunch bags, and scarves in bins on the top shelf.

It was a free project because I used things I already had around the house. I was already using the shoe holder in the closet. But half of it was empty, so I cut it in half and moved an underused hook from another closet onto the door for the backpacks. The lower rod used to be for the kids costumes in their closet, but they never hung them there, so it was unused. I already had the bins on the shelf. I just added a box from aldi to hold the lunch boxes. Voila. Free. And functional. I might spring for a nice basket for the bottom, though, to hold all the roller skates and winter boots.

My second free project was organizing my dresser. I wasn't planning to, but I saw a short video on apartment therapy about the virtues of storing your t-shirts and jeans vertically instead of in stacks in your drawers. Something about being able to see everything. I thought it was worth a try. Boy. So far so good! It's so easy to find what I'm looking for AND each drawer holds soooooooo many things. I used to have two drawers of pants. Now, everything fits in one! And... now I know I have too many pairs of black pants.

In other unfun house news, I spent the weekend bleaching mildew off of my bathroom walls (the last owner painted with oil-based paint, a big no no in a bathroom, so now it molds. Argh.).

6 Responses to “Car is dead, plus free home improvement, with pics”

  1. Ima saver Says:

    So sorry about the car!

  2. Livingalmostlarge Says:

    Sorry about the car. Is it even worth fixing? You can buy a lot of other beaters for $1k with more life left so I've found. Just a consideration.

  3. ThriftoRama Says:

    DH loves this car. I'd rather fix it than buy another used one. We're trying to get it to last until we are ready for our bigger family car. It's never had trouble before. Only tires all these years!

  4. creditcardfree Says:

    Maybe an alternator, which shouldn't be too costly. I bet it is repairable!

    Nice job on the organizing!

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    I'd expect it to be a pretty minor repair (for a car that just won't start), but I understand freaking out and worrying that it is worse.

  6. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I love how you repurposed things!

    Your organizing of the dresser drawers sounds like what Kon Mari suggests. It's also what I did with my clothes. Makes a big difference I think.

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