Showing posts with label diy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label diy. Show all posts

How to make a Sous-Vide Cooker !

How to make a Sous-Vide Cooker !

Want to make a juicy steak?? without all the mess and the timing stress to get the perfect cook ?  Well, the handy-guy in the household found a way to make a cheap sous-vide cooker to cook our food - saves time and tastes great !

Here's a list of materials if you want to get started on this project:

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How to reuse your old t-shirts

t shirt yarn

I didn't know this existed until a few days ago when I was browsing the web for some ideas on eco-fashion. I wanted to know if there was a way to help salvage perfectly good clothes from reaching the landfill.  We are all guilty of buying way to many clothes that we don't wear.  The evidence: the fashion industry reached almost $2,560 trillion in 2010 and the American household spent on average, $1,700 on apparel, footwear and related products and services in 2010!!

So when I saw this t-shirt yarn, it got me intrigued since only 15% of the total textile waste that is produced ends up back in the recycling depot!.  This means that 85% of used clothes goes straight to the landfill!!  I can understand that most people don't like wearing other people's used clothes (due to cleanliness and the fact that buying things makes us feel good)- the most a average person will do is send it out for donations.  But for the crafty people out there - I think this is something worth exploring !  

It is one thing to cut up a t-shrit and sew up the sides to make it bag/pouch, but how many bags/pouches do we need?? That would just end up as a side project waiting to be thrown away.  With t-shirt yarn, I think it can made it into something more useful and expressive - an perhaps less tacky.  ** Also a great idea for those shirts you get from volunteering and never wear !**

Ready to give it a try ? I found this useful YouTube video that shows how to transform your shapeless standard tee to something that can be made into anything you can image!

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Frugal wedding tip- cheap wedding veils

For the longest time I was u see the impression that I could only get my veil at a dress shop or make my own. Either I when to sacrifice money (~ $100) at the dress shop or time (find material and sew the lining of the veil).  But I have found the perfect solution today ! I went into Michaels for a browse and I stumbled upon this item in the wedding aisle.  It was just what I needed. Something simple and didn't cost me an arm and a leg. The total cost was under $30 !  I tried it on and was a bit crinkled from being Ina box but it's nothing I can't fix. It has two layers and comes down to my finger tips.  It also comes with the comb.

Best solution to my wedding veil dilemma ! What do you think ?

As a Frugal Couple supporter, please enjoy 
3 FREE wedding invitation samples from with code 3FREE
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Tercel fixes: Serpentine belts --> small tweeting sound

If your car makes this noise, you will need to replace your serpentine belt.
There are two belts in my Tercel, they are used to convert the energy from the motor to electric devices like the AC and the alternator.

The sound is a tweeting noise, mostly audible when the motor is on, you are not pressing the gas pedal. Spraying some lubricant will temporarily get rid of the sound, but in a few minutes, the sound is back.

Reading online points to the tension of the belt but the car repair shop says it is most likely the belt glazing with time. I got both changed because the effort is mostly to remove all the parts to access the belts.

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Toyota Tercel small fixes

Tercel fixing series
The Toyota Tercel is such a classic car. You still see a whole lot of them around and that is because they were so well built. However, they are starting to feel the age. Mine is a 1995 and frankly is not worth that much anymore (approximately 500-1000).
Why you'd want to do all this fixing yourself?
- the maintenance fees per year doesnt make sense anymore considering the actual worth of the car.
- only replace yourself stuff that is not critical to your safety, like light bulbs. Leave the more critical stuff to the pros
- its a fun system to play with: I've been wanting to play with robotics, rather than buying a bunch of robotics, just play with this car
- if you mess it up beyond recognition, buy a new car.
I will be posting a bunch of images and videos soon enough. Most of them were really simple things if you know the tricks but can be a lot of time trying to figure it out if not
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Gear Box light changing

It's been extremely hard to find enough information to do this. Most videos are of other cars.

The light you need is a 74 Light bulb, very small.
Buy a couple so that if you mess up, you have another one to spare because these are really fragile

Here are the steps:

- Remove the 4 screws holding the plastic part with the E-brake

- Remove the 2 plastic nails holding the plastic part covering the gear box. I actually broke them by pressing on the release pins too hard. I will be replacing them with metal screws. I ended up using M6-20mm with a washer and a nut on the other side. Doesnt have to be super tightly screwed in.

- Remove the black gear cover of the gear box by prying the 4 clips

- Remove any lady bugs from the light compartment. Considering how hard it was to get there, I have no idea how that lady bug got in there, but it could never get out.

- Rotate off the light module

- Change the light bulb. The light bulb is covered with this green cover but we wont need it. It does diffuse the light better than the bulb itself but I'll leave it out for now. Recommended: turn on your engine to test if the connection is good. I hate the way these light bulbs are designed, the terminals are so fragile, if you were to wiggle it too much or put it in and out a few times, the terminals might bend out of position and become useless.

- Put everything back by reversing these instructions

Note: these lights are not too bright so you will not see them until dark. They turn on as you turn on the engine and stay on for about 5-10 seconds after you shut down the engine so if you want to test them right after plugging the light in, you have to turn on the engine.

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Guest Post - Planning Your Wedding on a Shoe String

Planning Your Wedding on a Shoe String

It’s one of the most exciting times of your life, but can also be one of the most expensive. What are we talking about? Planning your wedding. However, if you are prepared to be creative, put in some hard work and have a few willing helpers, you can still have all the trimmings for your wedding, but save yourself a good chunk of money that you can put towards your honeymoon, house deposit or starting a family.

Create your own invitations

With so many areas in which you can save money, it can be hard to know where to start, but what better place than with your wedding invitations?  While you can pay for these to be made for you, making your own invitations, in whatever design you choose, is a good way to add your own personal touch. You don’t need to be a whizz at card-making - though if you do have previous experience it will always come in handy – as they are surprisingly easy to produce. The materials you need – card, stencils, metallic pens, sequins, glitter or whatever else you need to make the invitation your own – are also readily available. For our wedding we chose a simple design – a white card with a glitter finish, on which we mounted a pair of hand-drawn wedding bells and used transfers for the writing – but we were very pleased with the end result. If you’re struggling for ideas, have a look online for some suggestions and tips for making your own wedding invites.

Design your own tableware

Table decorations are another area where you can step in. You can let your imagination run away, but like with many things, sometimes simple ideas work best. We liked the idea of giving our guests something to take home to keep as a reminder of our day. So for each table setting we took a wine glass and with brightly coloured marker pens for glass wrote their name and added decoration. The rest of the table was decorated with red cut-out hearts in varying sizes and strewn gold and silver sequins. At other weddings I’ve seen some other interesting ideas for table decorations. One friend used the popular heart theme, but instead of using card, had found sets of heart-shaped cookie cutters in increasing sizes – it was certainly a nice gift for the children to take away with them. At another they had used spherical florist’s foam and mounted heart-shaped sweets on cocktail sticks; unsurprisingly these disappeared as the reception went on.

Something old

Although the majority of what you will use for your wedding will tend to be purchased or made for the day, it is tradition after all to have something old with you at your wedding. We dug out some old fairy lights to decorate the top table and after replacing some bulbs, they worked a treat and fixing up some lights is easier than repairing a phone.  It’s surprising what can come in useful; perhaps have a look around your home and that of your family to see what you can find.

Make your own favors

It’s a nice gesture to give your guests a favor as a little thank you for sharing your wedding day. It’s all too easy to buy these readymade, but obviously a more expensive choice. If you’re a dab hand at sewing, you can make little fabric pouches to fill with candies. Alternatively purchase small gift boxes to do the same. Perhaps bake a cookie for each guest. If you fancy having a go at origami, this might solve the problem of what to give for a favor and can also be used for additional decoration at the tables.

As a Frugal Couple supporter, please enjoy 
3 FREE wedding invitation samples from with code 3FREE

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Mighty putty

Well lets start by saying good luck pulling that truck with this bind. It does the job at fixing lightweight broken items and does well at blocking a small leak. However i think most heavier duty broken items such as the handle of my dragon boat paddle did not even last 10 strokes. Its never really hard either so you can always peel it off and it certainly doesn't bond with the surface its on too well. This make mighty putty a pretty poor glue for most applications. And it still needs a dry surface to bond on, this means if a pipe is leaking, u gotta clean the surface and put the putty on all in one second. Not really feasible and if there's water, it'll just leak out before the putty is dry.

I will be using it on a pipe that is leaking. See how that goes

So we turned off the water of the whole community garden, applied the putty. If you dont use this often, the top part of the tube will be dry and you'll have to waste it. But well, after putting it on, waiting 30minutes and turning the water back on, it seems to be a success!

My fingers were filthy from playing with the putty because you have to work it before its good for usage. Takes a lot of scrubbing to get that off.

I don't recommend it. Get a real epoxy, you'll see that the bond is better, smoother, and probably blocks leaks better, it just takes way more time to dry. We're going to have to replace the pipe anyways eventually, can this putty really last through the winter?

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{Guest Post} Do-it-Yourself Wedding Centerpieces

Here's a Guest Post on DIY centerpieces...Enjoy!


Most of us are aware that weddings can get pretty expensive. While couples can generally plan for the bigger expenses associated with a wedding ceremony (venue, dress, catering, etc.), it is the little unaccounted for purchases that can secretly build up and surprise the bride and groom with a larger-than-expected bill at the end. Luckily, do-it-yourself wedding crafts have slowly become popular among couples looking to save cash wherever they can. One wedding decoration that can easily save you money if you make it yourself is reception table centerpieces.

Here are five ideas for centerpieces you can make yourself in order to save you money:
[Photo Credit:]

Most wedding crafters will know the wonders a mason jar can do. From cups to centerpieces, a mason jar can be a key money saver for DIY wedding decorations. As a centerpiece, simply using a jar as a vase adds an artistic touch. If you have a few mason jars laying around, put them to use as a wedding decoration. Wrap the vase in burlap, fabric, or lace to match the theme and environment of your wedding.
[Photo Credit:]

For a funky twist, add fruits to a clear flower vase along with the water and flowers. If you are planning to have an afternoon or outdoor wedding reception, sliced limes or lemons brings a refreshing taste to see-through vases. It’s a great way to add some color and liveliness to a reception table.

[Photo Credit:]

This centerpiece brings elegance to a dinner or nighttime wedding reception. If you are going for a more classic and chic look, a few clear vases can do the trick. Add some pebbles or marbles to the bottom with a few dried leaves (make sure to superglue down anything that you do not want to float up) and fill it up with water. Finish the look by putting a single tea light in the vase that will lightly sit on top of the water. You can use a plain round or rectangular mirror as the vase platform to create a late-night elegant centerpiece.

[Photo Credit:]

This decoration only requires two materials per centerpiece: a cake stand and flowers. If you want to get a bit more creative, you can make pomander balls to be placed on the cake stand. Besides flowers and pomander balls, cake stands are great for creating an elevated look for centerpieces. You can place flower vases, pictures, and candles on a colorful stand to build a crafty and artsy look.


[Photo Credit:]

For a beach wedding, this decoration will be the perfect table decoration for a wedding reception. Use shallow clear vases, fill it with sand, and add little ornaments to it. These ornaments can be found at the beach and save you the cost of having to go out and purchase them. Gather some shells, twigs, and flowers to stick into the sand to mimic beach scenery.
Ideas for a wedding centerpiece do not need to be limited to these five basic craft suggestions. Mix and match ideas and materials if you want to create your own unique look. One more important thing to note is that most of the vases used for centerpieces can easily be found in local thrift stores. No need to splurge on fancy vases that will only be used for one day; buy funky, elegant, or simple vases from a second-hand store and embellish it with details to create your own signature centerpieces.

As a Frugal Couple supporter, please enjoy 
3 FREE wedding invitation samples from with code 3FREE

Author bio: Katrina Sanga is a content writer for Robert Koenig, an injury lawyer at Accident Attorneys’ Group.
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Korean BBQ... at home

Korean BBQ!!!

Have you been to Toronto??? That's pretty much the first thing and last thing you have to try if you're there. Its pretty much all you can eat for 13.95 dinner... and when they say ayce, its not like vancouver where you can only have beef... they really mean everything... beef, beef rib, chicken, pork, fish... and anything on the menu. That was a few years ago but i dont imagine they would have increased their prices that much more.

So reminiscing of acye korean bbq, we visited some joints in Vancouver... They dont really have AYCE, there were 2 places we know of, one is Dae Bak Bon Ga (but they dont do AYCE anymore and the other one is Pork Belly Beer House in downtown Vancouver. The second place is still pretty awesome, but its just pork belly and you'd need to pay more for more stuff. their beer is pretty cheap though so u can more than be full for the price. Still kinda limited sauces and stuff... so it left me craving for the Toronto experience... How is it that Vancouver is so much more asian and AYCE korean bbq hasnt become widespread???

The next best thing is to make it yourself at home. Of course, the beauty at Korean places is also the multitude of side dishes, and pretty ghetto atmosphere where if you're asian and somewhat pale skin, they assume you're korean, and will say many sentences while you give the blank look, hinting that you dont understand, yet it still keeps coming... Or maybe they just dont feel like speaking in English unless necessary.

The side dishes:
- Kimchi (i have my own way of making it, i find it a bit easier and less salty than what i've found online, depends what taste you are going for)
- Daikon (lo bok) (same as kimchi)
- seaweed (love that stuff... this video is kinda weird because she adds pollock)

- potatoes (kinda simple, just sweet sauce)
- bean sprouts (love that stuff too)

These are kinda tough to get because you are only going to eat a small quantity everytime so u'd be making a pretty big quantity of each. Worth making your own if you are going all out, but otherwise, you can go to H-Mart and pick up a small quantity of each.

- pork (kalbi sauce)
- chicken (kalbi sauce)

- beef (bulgogi sauce) --> sure, u can buy it from these guys, or you can go to TNT, it was on sale for 3$ a few weeks ago.

- beef shortrib (kalbi sauce)

The meat... you dont have to buy precut stuff... its not as fresh and its more expensive (you have no choice for shortrib cause more people i know dont own a saw they can use for cutting rib bones)

I buy the chicken from any supermarket when its on sale, frozen 3$/lb for chicken breast. Beef, you could really use anything but sirloin works well because everything is sauced u dont have to worry that much about it going dry (unless u over cook it)

Grill choice!
This is the main decision you have to make. If you've been to korean bbq, you must have noticed how your grill eventually gets to a point where u just cant grill anymore and you really should just get it swapped. At home, you dont have that luxury. I bought one that looks a lot like the one at the restaurant. The first time around, feels great, yeahhhhhhhhh  i'm at the restaurant. Tastes great. And then comes the washing part... this is where your dreams crumble down like the buildings in Inception. Look at it after two cooking sessions, and trust me... VERY hard to wash... i've tried dish washer... soaking it in water with soap... using the gas range to burn that stuff (this seemed to be the only solution really but would use a whole lot of gas to clean absolutely everything).

Its never gonna be clean, unless i spend way too much effort, which time costs more than the salary i'd make working that same time to buy a new one. So for my birthday, my fiancee bought me this non-stick one, after we watched korean TV in an LA thai joint showing korean TV. It changed my life. Its about as non-stick as you can want, while still able to char the surface of the meat (which is the problem of most non-stick pans, so Calphalon designed this "sear" collection which is non-stick and can sear).
This is how the new korean grill looks like after the damage. You know its a good sign when the sugar burnt stuff lifts up by itself. The only thing i hate is that I dont have to spend so much effort cleaning it... nooooooootttttt.

Oh yeah, i should show you the food.

Bacon is really nice on this grill!!!

Or you could use the George Foreman grill. But let me tell you... it doesnt really work for korean bbq because most of its browning power is from the top heating element and when you cut meat thin the way you like it for korean bbq... it doesnt touch the top element... sadly. But i love the non-stick surface.

Crispy and delicious meat!!! and onions that come with it. Enjoy with a beer, on a balcony, hot summer day, with the sun setting. its kind of what happened.

[This month's STAR sponsor!]
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Blogger Tutorial - Getting rid of that boarder on your pictures!

This seems to be a very common topic on Blogger, and it took me a while to find the easiest solution

Took this from another Blogger site!

If you're using the new Blogger interface: Go to Dashboard ('House' symbol) - Template - Customize - Advanced - Add CSS - paste the following code - Press enter after the last character of the last line } - Apply to Blog. 

.post-body img, .post-body .tr-caption-container, .Profile img, .Image img,
.BlogList .item-thumbnail img {
  padding: none !important;
  border: none !important;
  background: none !important;
  -moz-box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px transparent !important;
  -webkit-box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px transparent !important;
  box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px transparent !important;
 source :

[This month's STAR sponsor!]

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DIY iPhone cases - frām on Kickstarter

This weekend we discovered this new case frām on Kickstarter which will let you design your own case!  I’ve been through many iPhone cases because I get bored of my case easily and  always want to switch up the designs on it…but I end up buying all these cases that I won’t use anymore…!! (how many used cases do you have ?) (My fiance particularly likes gold-colored cases that look over the top, but hasnt been able to find THE ULTIMATE design that catches his eyes, perhaps time to create his own by putting real gold in there...)

But I think this case will finally solve my problems!
It's a really simple case design, but one you can get creative with and put your own personal touches.

All you need is the case, scissors and a nice image to put on the back! (trace – cut – insert!) (the clear backing acts as a tracer). It's kind of nice to have a reason to go and develop photos at the store again and have them physically be in our lives.

You can pretty much put anything on the back since it is designed to take the thickness of basic cardstock – that means you can also put a mini scrapbook on the back of you phone if you’d like or some really cool fabric design!

What’s so special about this case??

- textured side – non slip rubber grip (i dont think its rubber, its hard plastic with etched lines so it wont slip). After using my most recent rubber one, I found the rubber tends to deteriorate after time, it took about 6months for my rubber bumper to fall apart.
 - the edge of the case is high enough so that the screen and back won’t get scratched when it’s placed on the table. (must have for me!!) After having dropped it a couple of times, I realize how important having the raised borders is at saving the glass screen.
- comes with a handy iPhone app that will allow you to take pictures and crop your photos
- made out of polycarbonate for durability. Polycarbonate is a hard plastic so it is more resistant to scratches than the soft plastic that most cases use.

- scissors challenged? no problem! the black edge of the case is actually very forgiving if you can’t cut a straight line!

Where to get this case?

Here’s the catch.  This product is only pre-selling  on Kickstarter.

The IDEATIVE is trying to reach their goal by July 21, 2012 to fund their project.  So if you love this idea, support it!

You help them reach their goal by pre-buying/pledging their project!

Depending on how much you pledge, it will be like you are committing to buying their product if it reaches the goal and your pledge will be associated with a prize.

***Get a special pricing when you order yours on Kickstarter! – you can get a frām for only $25  - a retail value of $30 *** Additionally, you get lifetime warranty, how crazy is that???

You can contribute as much as you’d like until their deadline (July 21, 2012) or you can even back out of the deal.  Also, your credit card won’t be charged if they don’t reach their goal.

Here’s an extra incentive to help them reach their goal : with the iPhone 5 coming out, they’ll start working on the iPhone 5 version AND an ipod version if they reach $100 K !
more information about Kickstarter here .


A little bio about this project :

Tired of the daily grind, Tavis Schriefer and Ed Stanfield ditched their corporate jobs and founded IDEATIVE to pursue their passion for innovation. Inspired by problems encountered by technology users, they made some cool products like Socket Sense surge protectors, FlexUSB adapters & cables, and Revolution HDMI cables. Now they're excited to be bringing it to the crowd with frām case for iPhone.

DIY ideas -

diy iphone case.DIY iPhone Case

via via


[This month's STAR sponsor!]

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Blogger Tutorial - Google Web Fonts

During the weekend I found an awesome site (from Google of course) that they have a big data base of free web fonts available for use. 

About Google Web Fonts
Google Web Fonts makes web fonts quick and easy to use for everyone, including professional designers and developers. We believe that there should not be any barriers to making great websites.
Our goals are to create a directory of core web fonts for the world and to provide an API service so that anyone can bring quality typography to their webpages.
The API service runs on Google's servers. They are fast, reliable and tested. Google provide the service free of charge. It is possible to add Google Web Fonts to a website in seconds.
A web built with web fonts is a web that is more beautiful, more readable, more accessible and more open. - google webfonts
This websites allows you to grab fonts quickly by clicking the "Quick-use" button at the bottom of the font to grab the css code.

 This is how you install the fonts to blogger: ( it took me a while to figure it out...)

Go to template> edit html:

then search for /body

enter before the /body the Java script code
it will look something like this:

<script type="text/javascript">
  WebFontConfig = {
    google: { families: [ 'Chango::latin' ] }
  (function() {
    var wf = document.createElement('script');
    wf.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 'https' : 'http') +
    wf.type = 'text/javascript';
    wf.async = 'true';
    var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];
    s.parentNode.insertBefore(wf, s);
  })(); </script>

go to the post you are working on, and in the HTML, replace your existing font with

font-family: 'Chango', cursive;

 The one cool thing about this is is that it also shows how long it will take to load your font with their speedometer!

 Hope you found this useful!
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Blogger Tutorial– Window Live Writer


I was having trouble with adjusting the pictures on Blogger and while I was trying to find a better solution, I found this !  It’s called the Windows Live Writer.  You can pretty much write all your entries offline and there are more options for you to organize and style your blog!  The best thing I like about it is that you can import the theme of the blog and you can preview it right from the program !
No I can organize pictures side by side on a post with no problem!
Download yours here ! It will make your blogging life so much easier!

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Blogger Tutuorial - No underline links when hovering

So as people that have followed this blog knows, I've been constantly changing the layout of the blog to find what I like best since I've just started blogging (well...not really..but finally decided to commit to it)

I've been learning lots of new things about the world of blogging an I'd like to share all my blogging tips with you!

My first tip:

How to get rid of that under line when you hover over your links

This only applies to a specific post/page:

 go to template>customize>advanced>add css

add this code:

.nounder a {
text-decoration: none;
color: black;

 and then after in your page/post you are on, add this to the HTML:

<p class="nounder">
All of the <a href="somewhere">links within this paragraph</a>
will have no underlines.


 and you're done!

Now if you want to apply to all the links in your blog, then you can add this under
template>customize>advanced>add css 

a:link {text-decoration:none;}
a:visited {text-decoration:none;}
a:hover {text-decoration:none;}
a:active {text-decoration:none;}


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Mamaluv - baby gift baskets

A co-worker at my place recently had a baby and I was given the task of finding a "congratulations" present for him. 

A good suggestion was to give a catering service to the couple since the baby would take up a lot do time ... Smart thinking !

So I googled meal delivery and Li and behold a company like that already exists.

Mamaluv specializes in baby "gift baskets". You can pick a meal plan for the receiver and all they need to do is call in and order the food they liked tha package also comes with baby food and other baby gifts.

This gift idea is not only limited to new parents, and I think it would be a great gift idea for anyone that's always too busy to make their own meals.

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How to display Hello World with C#


Well, this is where it begins, C#, a HelloWorld console and Windows form application.

Microsoft has made it super easy for anybody to start programming, but this is really just the beginning. You'll find tons of sweet additions in C#, my favorite is Intellisense, which accurately predicts what I'm going to be typing simply based on a few letters and history of what I've typed. Intellisense was present in Microsoft Visual C++ but really not to this extent, it was pretty much only useful when you had a class with functions or members.

Here's a video that should guide you through how to get started in C#. It gets more interesting later on
but let's start by getting our feet wet.

I like to have a recipe for everything, that way its easier to tell where it went downhill. Watch the video to guide you through.

1- Start Microsoft Visual Studio (whichever version, it'll be the same for now). I'm using the Ultimate edition.

2- Click on New Project

3- Select Windows Console Application

4- Type in a name in the application name: I will type HelloWorldConsole

5- Type Console.WriteLine("Hello World!!!") in the main function

6- Press F5 to start debugging or Ctrl-F5 for start without debugging which will keep the screen on after the application exits.

And there you have it. Your own first program. Play around with what you can type in there as well as format just to confirm to yourself that you are in control of C#... for now.

Console applications are fun for beginners but if you want to do something commercial, it's just not awesome enough. I'd go to at least Windows form for something acceptable and make money or make someone happy. Here's a tutorial on how to do Hello World using Windows Form with C#. As you can see, its very simple and that's thanks to Microsoft (i'm a big fan).

And what's hot now are phone apps. Windows also has its own phone and the beauty of it is that the language used to program it is C#!!! Which means that all the stuff you learn from Windows Forms is reusable here, plus more. I've programmed iPhone-iPad apps before and I'll tell you, the submission procedure is so much simpler with Windows phone that I was considering switching over to Windows phone only.

Here's a hello world video on windows phone, hope you enjoy how simple it is and go from there!

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How to install a magnet knife bar

During the weekend we went to Ikea, and of course, we were inspired ! (we were actually looking for one of these before we went...and we found it !)

This is a great item to have when you want to save some counter space or gain easier access to your kitchen utensils! 

And this is how we installed it!

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How to make an espresso coffee

Espresso coffee has become really popular in the last decade. I guess people were tired of getting coffee that had been sitting in a big jug for x hours (i know because I used to work at a closed down Dunkin' donuts, at night when there are barely any customers and they don't want to wait for their coffees if they want one, you just serve them a cup a good old coffee).

When you go to Starbucks, Blenz, Second Cup, or even Tim Hortons and McDonalds, you can now get an Espresso, which is an individually brewed coffee, right on the spot for you as you order it. This coffee is different from drip coffee for one big reason: it uses pressurized water!

As usual, I like to go step by step into showing you how its done. Watch the video, it should be more revealing.

1- Buy finely ground coffee from any store. I got some fine coffee from an italian market but the same bag was available at superstore for half the price. The bags come vacuum packed so to keep the coffee freshness. Or you can go and grind your own coffee but make sure you select the fine grind.

2- Open the Espresso maker by screwing off the top.

3- put filtered water in the bottom compartment. Make sure that when you put the filter part back on, no water is seen in the coffee compartment or else there's too much water and the coffee will overflow when ready.

4- fill the coffee compartment with ground coffee, you dont need to compress the coffee, just fill it up and level it pouring the rest of the coffee away.

5- screw the top back on

6- turn your stove to max (this is going to take a few minutes depending on the power of your stove and the quantity of water). Mine is a 2 show model, and my stove is one of those with the red light. It takes about 5 minutes to make a coffee.

but not to worry, you can warm up the milk and froth it in the meantime.

I use the microwave to warm up liquids. I've tried using the stove before and I found it to be a waste of time and energy (microwave was designed to heat up water!). A whole cup can get pretty comfortably hot in 1 minute.

8- fill up a cup leaving space for the coffee with milk or chocolate milk (i like to put chocolate milk so because the quantity of sugar is perfect for me)

9- heat in microwave for 1min

10- use a frother and beat that up (there are several grades of frother and my friend uses one that warms up the milk as it froths it but its way more expensive). Mine is a 8$ one from Home outfitters

- the coffee would be nearly done at this point, you can hear it migrate to the top compartment. then the sound of migration ends... this means there's no more water at the bottom. time to take it off the fire.

11- in the video, you'll see that i was lazy and poured the coffee into the frothed milk. This kills a bit of the froth. You should pour the coffee into a cup, and the milk and froth into it.

- and there you have it, a moka latte!

- you can melt in some dark chocolate chips and have a dark moka, or mint chocolate, or just plain water to make an Americano, of whatever you want!

And best thing about this, it costs about 40c to make this coffee, tops. The coffee itself is real cheap, about 20c, the milk would cost you roughly 20c (assuming 200ml from a 2L carton at 2$).

--> really nice to enjoy one on your own balcony watching traffic on a sunday morning. After all, you're paying for that mortgage/rent!

espresso ground coffee from superstore (5$)
Frother from Home outfitters (8$)

You can buy a traditional stovetop espresso maker for about 20$ here.

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