Tag Archives: green living

DIY: Tap your Tippy Tap

Tippy Tap ~ {The tippy tap is a hands free way to wash your hands that is especially appropriate for rural areas where there is no running water. It is operated by a foot lever and thus reduces the chance for bacteria transmission as the user touches only the soap. It uses only 40 millilitres of water to wash your hands versus 500 millilitres using a mug. Additionally, the used “waste” water can go to plants or back into the water table.}

I had so much fun making this project!

Tippy Tap 4

As per previous posts, you will read that we currently use an outside bathroom facility as our container home is still under construction. It houses a shower and toilet, but no hand-wash basin. This posed a health problem as we couldn’t wash our hands. For the last few months we have been washing our hands in the kitchen sink! Uhm…not ideal.

Outside bathroom

Outside bathroom

Anyhooo. It was time to improvise. I saw this cool device on a local programme, Voetspore, a few months ago. It immediately caught my attention.

In my rubbish stash, I had some old easels that would be perfect to use. I used them previously for another cool project, where I made an A-frame shelf.

I started off attaching the frame to the fence. The idea is not to make a permanent fixture. So the fence was perfect.

I leveled it and assembled it. I added a water bottle and soap.  To fully operate it needs a foot lever which you fasten with rope and tie it to the bottle neck.

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Easel

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Attach frame to fence

Tippy Tap 1

Fully assembled

Tippy Tap 2

5 liter bottle and soap on a rope

Tippy Tap 3

With foot lever

images

How to use tippy tap

The kids love this new device! It promotes good hand-washing habits and it is fun to use!

Would you use a tippy tap?

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DIY: Easel shelving unit

Easel: {An upright tripod for displaying something (usually an artist’s canvas)}

I have recently started writing for an awesome magazine: Green Home. I focus on what I love: Recycling and DIY.

The segment is aptly called “Talking Garbage”.  

Adequate storage is a much needed aspect for a good, working home. You can never have enough storage space. A working home also needs decorative elements and you can merge the two. I made

a decorative shelf for use in a private library or lounge area. I used 2 old artist’s easels and build them like a long ladder. I then used old pine off-cuts as the shelves. It looks pretty cool and is super
practical!

I love the addition to our living room! It cost me nothing but 2 hinges (R4,00 ea) and some elbow grease!

Old artist’s easels

A-frame shelf2

Take easel apart and construct it like a ladder

A-frame shelf 4

I used off-cut planks as the shelves

A-frame shelf

It is done!

* Cheerio!

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Port Elizabeth, the friendly city is growing on me…

We visited the windy city in January this year during the holidays.  If only for two nights…we really had a great time.

We visited with our friends, Timothy & Verna.  Thanks guys, we really had a great time and look forward to welcoming you in Jozi for a visit soon!

(Most pictures taken while in motion in the car)

Colonial buildings

Old Mill building

The old colonial historic mill building was produced for Premier Milling corporate client.

King Edward Hotel

King Edward Mansions open 21 November 1904.  It became a hotel in 1911 and the name was changed to “The Edward”  in 1961. Ashley and I had a very romantic weekend here in March 2008 when we attended Timothy & Verna’s wedding.

Campanile

Located near the Port Elizabeth harbour’s entrance, the Campanile was built as a memorial to the arrival of the early settlers of the region in 1820. The 52 m high Italian-style bell tower, which stands in Port Elizabeth’s Strand Street was built in 1923, and features a carillon of 23 bells which makes it the largest carillon of bells in the country.

Looove lampposts

Ferris wheel on Summerstrand

Airplane coming in

My dream vehicle...

Ashley and I have a dream of touring through Africa with the girls in 2013. We want to do it before Chelsea goes to Grade 1 in 2014.  This would be the type of vehicle we would need…vvvrrroooomm.

Bluewater Bay

I was quite surprised at the effort the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality makes to initiate greener living.

Small wind turbine

This turbine was located in Summer strand and it generated enough energy to power the grid of festive lights on the left.

Solar heaters in low-cost housing areas

We drove through quite a few residential areas where solar heaters on the roofs were the norm.

One of the most surprising experiences were the absolute state of safety our friends lived in.

Open windows

We left for a day trip to Addo National Park and they left their windows open. No burglar bars or fencing!  Our laptops and valuables were all on the dining room table and they were very relaxed about it.  I grew up in Paarl, a very safe town but still I wouldn’t leave the windows open without burglar bars!  Now living in Jozi it is even worse.  I just realised in shock how my sensible approach to safety can quickly become borderline paranoia.  The quality of life made me a bit jealous, but not enough to want to move here.

Port Elizabeth is truly a great city.  There is no rush, no traffic and then there’s the beach.  Aaaah…the beach!

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One step closer to living in a shipping container

There is nothing that makes me more excited than green living and recycling.  I’ll admit, I am not living as green as I should…but I am much more aware of my footprint on the environment than I was a few years ago.

Therefore one of my dreams is to live in a shipping container.  I proclaimed it earlier and I am sticking to my guns.  Read about it here.

As mentioned here, we had an avalanche of guests a few weeks ago.  They really made a huge difference while they were here.

Painted container

Firstly the exterior was painted.  Then the mongoose that stayed under the container was evicted.  They decided to build up the foundation.  This time I caught a better picture of him.

Mongoose

I am glad is still around though.  Maybe he can assist with decreasing the population of snakes.   I tell you God is so amazing for bringing so much balance.  Check this illustration of a food chain.

Food chain

The amazing (and scary) thing is I share my habitat with all the animals above.  I guess this is Africa baby!  Anyhow, back to the container revamp.  Here are some pictures to show you in short what they did.

Interior tiled

Living room

So, slowly we are making progress.  Although the youngsters were enthusiastic and eager, the tiles are laid a bit skew.  So we will lift and re-tile.  Also, we need to do a lot of finishing. All in good time though.  In the meantime, we are trying to get a low-cost solution to finishing the dreaded dressing room to make it mouse and snake proof…or any animal for that matter!

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