J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Archive for the tag “guest post”

Home-Made Remedies Rule


I prefer using home-made remedies whenever possible. As A Civil War author, I have studied about herbal remedies our ancestors used, as well as little-known facts that have been eradicated over the years. One such example is the false idea that dandelions are weeds. They are actually related to sunflowers, and their flowers provide antioxidants. Another example is a home-made recipe for weed killer, which consists of white vinegar, salt and liquid dish soap.


Here is a guest post article on home-made home cleaning agents.  I hope you enjoy it!


9 Home-Made Cleaning Agents to Make Your House Spotless-Clean

When it comes to cleaning our house, we automatically assume that it requires a formulated chemical agent to get rid of stains, odor, or infestation of microorganisms. While that may be true; But there are other alternatives to it which surprisingly does the work and produces effective results.

Now, you may wonder what the alternatives are. Well, these alternatives are present in your house so fortunately, you won’t have to make a stop by the supermarket store. All you need to do is make use of it right away. Besides that, chemically formulated agents for cleaning are often not environmentally friendly. Read more to find out about DIY Cleaning products. 

Amazing DIY Cleaning Products for Easy House Cleaning!

Most of the DIY agents are in your house already but to use it as a cleaning agent, you need to formulate a mixture of it with other components. Here are some classic DIY agents that are easy for use:

1. All-Purpose Cleaner

To make an all-purpose cleaner for bathrooms, countertops, or windows, you need a glass bottle that can spray,  2 cups of white vinegar and water separately. In the mixture, you need to add 3 drops of essential oil made of lemon and another 3 drops of oil made of tea tree.

Once you’ve mixed the mixture well, put it in the glass bottle and shake it properly. Now, the agent is ready to clean the countertop and most-touched surfaces for getting rid of residual debris. 

2. Tub/Shower Cleaner

Tired of worrying about molds and germs in the bathroom? Here’s what you can do. Use one cup of water and white vinegar each and then mix them. In the same portion, add at least 3 to 5 drops of essential oil made of lemon. 

Now, stir the mixture well and put them in the spray bottle. The cleaning agent is precisely ready for cleaning the bathtub, bathroom walls, or even showerheads. Additionally, you can use the water and vinegar mixture in a plastic bag and wrap it around the showerhead. Make sure it is touching the showerhead. After a period of time, you’ll see that the showerhead is no longer clogged. 

3. Glass Cleaner

Vinegar and water act as a great cleaning agent for removing layers of dirt and dust on the surface of the glass. It is also helpful in taking out the hard grease stuck on the glass. Simply take one cup of water and one cup of white vinegar. Now, put them together and make a mixture. Once that is done, it would be advisable to use a spray bottle to spray the mixture on the glass or mirror. But, if you don’t have one, then you can use a clean cloth to do the wiping. 

That being said, it is also advisable that you let the mixture remain on the glass or mirror for at least 30 seconds. After that, using an extra clean cloth, wipe out the remaining debris.

4. Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Many people consider bleach to be an ingredient for cleaning toilet bowls instead of sold products. But, you can try something less volatile and more effective. For this mixture, you need a big vessel where you can mix the agents and a funnel to transfer it to an airtight bottle safely. 

Take ¼ of Castile soap in liquid form, use a half cup p baking soda with ¼ amount of hydroperoxide. Now, add one cup of water to it, aligned with ¼ amount of vinegar. And lastly, add at least 10 drops of essential oil made of tea tree. Mix it well and transfer it into the bottle. Now, use the mixture on the toilet bowl and scrub it. Leave the mixture for at least 10 to 15 minutes until you flush it out. 

5. Air Freshener

Have you run out of air freshener and feeling super lazy to go out? Well, you can make one in your house using simple things. Take a large cup and pour one whole cup of baking soda with one whole cup of water. Now, add essential oil worth 5 to 6 drops. Choose a variety of it based on what kind of smell you want. 

Insert the mixture in a spray bottle and shake it. Now, use it around the corners of the room or at the top of the room so that the fragrance spreads everywhere. 

6. Drainage System Cleaner

If you have a clogged washroom and kitchen sink then take a bowl and make a cleaning agent. Pour ¼ amount of baking soda with ¼ amount of sodium chloride. Now, add ¼ amount of tartar cream. Use this mixture on the drain or sink

Finally, add boiling water worth one cup onto the whole mixture. Let it remain that way for a period of time. Soon, you ‘ll see the drain is unclogging. If you see that it did not work, then apply baking soda and vinegar into the drain. Leave it overnight and wash it in the morning. 

7. Oven Cleaner

To easy clean over of stains and food residues, mix ¼ amount of castile soap, half cup of salt, one whole cup of baking soda. This will produce a paste-like texture. Use it inside the oven and apply it all over. Leave it for the night and then using warm water, remove it in the morning. Using a sponge would be advisable to absorb the residue. Finally, use white vinegar to do the last finishing of cleaning as residues can still remain inside. 

8. Sanitized Wipes

Want to make DIY reusable disinfectant wipes? Here’s what you can do. Take an empty container where you’ll put the wipes and dish towels worth 15 to 120 squares. Now, place them inside the container that you will use. 

Using one cup of water with ¼ amount of vinegar, add them in the container. Now, add 7 to 8 drops of tea tree oil, lemon oil, eucalyptus oil. Let the cloth soak in the container for a period of time. Then, you can use them as per your needs. Or, you can re-use them by putting them inside the laundry of clothes. 

9. Dishwasher Agent 

If you want to prepare a dishwashing agent by yourself, take 2  measuring cups glass containers with a half cup of baking soda powder and white vinegar. Now that you’ve repaired the items, remove the dishes from the rack. Using a clean towel, take off the remaining debris. 

Now, use the vinegar cup and place it on the bottom rack of the dishwasher, while placing the baking soda container on the first rack. Now, all you need to do is let the dishwasher run its course. Let the operation be for 20 minutes of the cleaning cycle. 

Once it is over, you’ll see It worked as a natural steam cleaning process. Lastly, wipe away the remaining mixture from the racks. 

Let’s Ease Everyday Cleaning Routine

Even using all the DIY agents, cleaning can be a tough job, especially if you have a busy life. But, there is an easy way to get it done. Getting quality cleaning services from Dubai-Cleaners can make the job easier for you. They have been imparting quality service in Dubai for many years. And, since then have earned immense trust and fame due to their credibility. So, why worry about cleaning when you can easily hire professional assistance based on your convenience. 

(Article courtesy of Mr. Sadat Hossain)

Guest Post Article

As you know, I frequently feature writers who are looking to get their blog posts published. Here is another article I found interesting, especially since my dad was into woodworking and was very good at it. His beautiful creations still grace my home. Anyway, I hope you enjoy this post by James Draper.

Dad 1

Five Reasons Why You Should Get Into Woodworking This Year

Woodworking can be much more than a profession or a hobby. It’s, for a lot of people, an art that has serious impacts on your body and mind! Many people find it a relaxing and productive activity for their overall development. Planning, starting, and finishing a project can be a major improvement for your physical health, as well as for your focus and determination.

If you’re a woodworker already, then you have plenty of reasons for loving your job. If you are brand new, or still thinking about getting into the handy craft world, here are some reasons why you should start this year:

1. Health Benefits 

Woodworking is not only good for your body but for your mental health, as well. If you suffer from stress or anxiety, this activity will certainly refresh your mind. An easy-to-do woodworking project will instantly boost your mind and self-esteem by diverting your attention from destructive thoughts. There are also plenty of studies that show that this art is perfect for slowing down depression related problems. Refinishing, for example, is an easy and very effective solution – from the first sanding process all the way up to completion, you’ll love every moment of it. Coming from a personal side, woodworking can really be a natural boost. 

2. Focus Improvement

It can, sometimes, be a dangerous activity, one that involves complex and strong power tools that require focus and extreme attention. Make sure safety is your main priority – you can easily check for tool options that regard safety and efficiency at the same time. 

But believe me, a simpler and safer woodworking project will greatly improve your focus and concentration, a benefit that will definitely help you in other areas of your personal and professional life. It will also help you gain confidence in yourself and in your skills, and change the way you look at smaller insignificant tasks of your daily life.

3. Better Planning and Organizing Skills

Truth be told, many people are not able to do proper planning of their time, which can greatly affect their quality of life, as well as their health. A woodworking DIY project requires you to follow a step by step process, in order to finish a workpiece. This way, you’re bound to think ahead, from the start, like what materials you should choose, what tools to use, among other things. If you’re able to accomplish simple tasks, you may carry on with more complicated woodworking projects and reach a point where making a wooden chair from scratch is peanuts. Transfer that improvement to your daily life, and you’ll notice how much more motivated you are in tackling boring and monotonous tasks.

4. Helps Replacing Bad Habits

We all know it is very easy to acquire a bad habit but extremely difficult to get rid of it. Since woodworking projects require dedication and a great deal of time, you won’t end up with that much mental space to think about your bad habits. A lot of rehab clinics have introduced woodworking to their patients, showing great results, especially in drug addiction situations.

5. Profitable 

Believe it or not, it’s a tremendously profitable hobby. Since you’re able to build any piece of furniture (with enough practice), you avoid purchasing one at a DIY store for a much higher price. If you build it yourself, the costs are much cheaper, and since it encourages creativity, which allows you to keep improving your skills, you’ll reach a point where the outcome’s quality is so good you can actually sell them! That way, you’ll balance the costs of materials, energy, and time and even get some extra cash. Trust me, you’ll start with a simple chair and in a couple of months, you’ll already be working on a customized table to your sister’s parents-in-law. That will not only bring satisfaction but will keep your creativity alive, so remember, the more art pieces you make, the more creative you become.


In a Nutshell 

There are a lot of reasons for liking woodworking, and there are also many benefits that this hobby brings into your life that you might not really think about. Woodworking can really turn you into a better problem-solver. It’s an activity that will make better use of your downtime, as well as making you capable of giving amazing gifts to people you love! I’m sure they will be received with much love since it comes from your own hands. 

Lastly, there is something amazing about being able to use your mind and your body to produce a project from start to end – almost like the primitive nature of our ancestors. It will surely give you the opportunity to make decisions, think, design, and change a pile of wood into something greater! Once you see that you can produce something of value with your own hands, it will fill you with excitement and the desire of accomplishing many other things. So, one question remains: What are you still doing here?

(Just a note, these are two creations that my dad made.)


Guest Post by Elizabeth Shields

Always one to help a fellow writer out, I occasionally feature blog posts written by guest bloggers. This one is quite informative, and discusses interesting aspects about Easter Sunday. I hope you enjoy it.


Easter is almost upon us and throughout the world, just like Christmas, Easter these days is commonly considered a time to be spent with family or your nearest and dearest.

We often don’t give any consideration to where the traditions, that have been carried along from generation to generation, originated from – we just go along with them, not knowing how or where they began…


Easter traditionally commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ, which is thought to have taken place around 33 AD and Easter festivals and feasts are believed to have begun during the 2nd Century.

During Medieval times, Easter was a prominent celebration where feasting, combined with music, dance and the consumption of alcohol would take place. These feasts could sometimes go on for days, similar to a Christmas celebration!

Many Easter traditions have been around for centuries but have evolved over time. It was only during the 19th century that Easter really became considered to be a time to spend with family…

Easter Sunday, for many Christians, begins with a sunrise service at church. It is believed that it was dawn when the tomb of Jesus was discovered to be empty and this is why the service is held at sunrise. It is thought to have been started in the 1700’s by the Moravians.


One of the main symbols of Easter is the Easter bunny, which is thought to have originated from the Pagans and then been brought over to America by German immigrants in the 1700’s, whilst the tradition of decorating eggs is thought to date back as far as the 13th century. The Easter parade tradition is thought to date back even further than this!

Following on with the egg theme, the Easter egg hunt is another tradition which is believed to have originated from Pagan festivals that celebrated fertility. Easter egg hunts (typically aimed at children, although I have to say, I rather still enjoy them myself!) involve eggs being hidden by the Easter bunny. Typically chocolate eggs are hidden, but they can also be eggs filled with candies and even hard-boiled eggs can be used (although I’m not sure if children would love the hunt as much with hard-boiled eggs being used!). The children go hunting for the eggs which they then put into their Easter egg basket and devour later! Kids tend to make a bit of a mess during all of the fun so keeping the house clean will be difficult to say the least! Eggs are also part of the tradition because they were banned during the period of lent in Medieval Europe which resulted in them often being eaten over the Easter period when the fasting had ended.

Hot Cross Buns

The tradition of consuming hot cross buns over the Easter period is thought to have begun with a monk during the 12th century, who decided to add the cross shape to the top of them in celebration of Good Friday.

Chocolate eggs – probably one of the most typical symbols of Easter these days – originated in France and Germany in the 19th century and then became popular throughout the rest of Europe and then the United States, where today, consuming copious amounts of chocolate seems to be the main family activity at Easter time… At least in my household! 

Guest Post: Home Improvement

Every once in a while, I like to feature guests on my blog. Although this article, sent to me by Julian Lane, isn’t associated with historical fiction or my brand, I want to feature it because I am very interested in real estate. In fact, my husband is working toward acquiring his realtor’s license, and I recently took an online course on interior design. I hope you find this article interesting and helpful. Thanks, Julian, for sending me your article!


Look before you renovate: Consider the pros and cons of DIY

It’s amazing how easy a home improvement project can look at first glance. For homeowners who think they know what they’re doing, knocking out a wall or putting in a couple of ceiling fans can turn a weekend do-it-yourselfer into multiple trips to the hardware store and a situation stressful enough to land you and your spouse in marital counseling by Monday. It’s important to assess your big remodeling plans based on your skill and commitment level, and on whether it’s safe enough to handle by yourself. Sometimes, lining up a professional contractor is just a better way to go. A determination to save money and months of binge-watching HGTV are no guarantee that you’ll pick up on the fine points of home remodeling well enough to get it right without a whole lot of help. 

Water isn’t always your friend

If you’re contemplating taking on a plumbing job, think well before you turn that monkey wrench. You can easily cause enough water damage that you’ll end up defeating the purpose of DIY by shelling out big bucks to fix what you did wrong. Putting in a new dishwasher may seem like a simple plug-and-play proposition, but there are more than enough parts and pieces to keep you scratching your head and guessing as you go. There are enough “fine points” involved to discourage the most enthusiastic homeowner from flying solo. Bear in mind that installing water and drainage lines is a lot more involved than drilling a few holes and putting in some screws. 

Having problems with your water pressure? Before you start tearing out walls and replacing pipes, consider that low water pressure can be caused by a lot of things, ranging from fractured pipes to an eroded water line. Do a little investigating before you start wrestling with your plumbing. Remember that even the most troublesome problems can have an easy fix. Try removing your aerator and cleaning out food residue. If that doesn’t do the trick, you may be looking at a project that calls for more a more experienced pair of hands than yours. 

Be a bright bulb

Electricity is extremely dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. Unless you’re familiar with electrical work, it’s probably in your best interest to call an electrician. Installing new lighting or rewiring an outlet isn’t like screwing in a light bulb. There’s a procedure that needs to be carefully followed to avoid serious injury. Unfortunately, thousands of Americans take too many shortcuts and end up getting hurt each year trying to do it themselves. Here’s a good rule of thumb: If you don’t know how to turn off your power (or if you didn’t know that you need to do so), then you should definitely let a professional handle it. Hiring an electrician will usually cost you $50 – $100 per hour.  

Weigh the cost and the time

Those sparkling model kitchens at your local home remodeling supply store look shiny and modern. Making your kitchen look like that (or something like that) makes you feel good and your home look great, but the temptation to do it yourself and save some money can easily backfire. Consider carefully whether it’s really going to be cost-effective. According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost to remodel a kitchen in Colorado Springs is just over $24,000.

About 400 years ago, Shakespeare wrote “Discretion is the better part of valor.” If you’re a prospective do-it-yourselfer, bear those wise words in mind and think carefully before spending thousands of dollars on a project if you’d be safer, and wiser, giving it to an experienced professional. 

Courtesy Pixabay.com


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