Friday, May 11, 2012

How to Potty Train Your Puppy Using Bells

Photo by TintedGlass
Training a puppy to let you know when he needs to go outside to potty doesn't have to be a hard task. You just need to train your puppy to associate ringing the bells with going outdoors.

What you will need:
Bells (small jingle bells or craft bells will work)
A length of sturdy string or ribbon to tie or sew the bells to.

Be sure that the string or ribbon is long enough for your puppy to reach with his nose or paw so that he can ring them. Sew or tie the bells firmly to the string or ribbon, you do not want them to be able to fall off and cause a choking hazard for your pet. Affix the bells to your door, being sure your puppy can reach them.

To get your puppy to associate the bells with going outdoors, be sure to ring them every time that you take your puppy outside. It will be especially helpful if you can get the puppy to ring them when you take him or her outside, however, even if you are doing the ringing, be sure that the bells are rang each time, then open the door to go out. After a few days of this, most puppies will learn what the bells mean and you will soon hear the bells ring and find your puppy waiting patiently by the door.

However, if your puppy is not learning to associate the bells with the door, he or she may need some positive affirmation in the form of treats. For more info on this visit:

Friday, May 4, 2012

How to Hang a Wind Chime

When decorating the exterior of your home, a wonderful addition to a porch or patio area is a wind chime. These beautiful ornaments are not only decorative, but create music for you and any guests with just the slightest breeze.

To hang your wind chime, you will need:
Screw Eye Hook
Metal S Hook
Length of Chain (optional)

Find the location where you want your wind chime to be located. The eaves of your home or porch is a good option, especially if they are wooden, just screw in the screw eye hook to use an anchor for your wind chime. If your home is covered with vinyl siding, you have an option of screwing the hook through the siding, or you can hang your wind chime from the gutter with an S plant hook. If you want your wind chime to hang lower, use a length of chain to attach the wind chime to the screw eye hook.

A simple project that will help add some simple beauty to your home.

Friday, April 27, 2012

DIY Super Simple Bell Bracelet and Necklace

Bells make adorable jewelry. For a super quick super simple necklace or bracelet just follow our easy instructions:

We used:
Small Liberty Bell

Bell Bracelet:

Cut enough ribbon so that it will easily tie around your wrist. Center the bell on the piece of ribbon (to keep the bell from sliding, you can tie a not around it.) Tie ribbon around your wrist and voila, you have a bell bracelet.

Bell Necklace:

Cut enough ribbon so that the necklace will hang where you want it to, and still have enough left on the ends to tie the ribbon around your neck. Center the bell on the ribbon, if you do not want the bell to slide, knot the ribbon around it. Tie the ribbon on and your bell necklace is complete.

See, we told you it was super simple. You can experiment with a variety of bell colors and shapes as well as ribbons. If you make one, let us know, we would love to see it!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Using Garden Decor Indoors

There are many beautiful garden decor items that can also double as interior decor. Wind chimes, small statues, gazing globes, even outdoor furniture can double as indoor furniture.

This works well if you want a garden feel inside your home, or want to link a sun room to the outdoors. Wind chimes can be hung where a breeze from the door opening and closing will make them chime for you. This can add a soothing feeling to coming home.

There are also many different outdoor rugs that would be a welcome addition to the inside, many of these rugs are easy to clean, which make them perfect for high traffic/high mess areas, such as a dining room or foyer. Garden statuary also makes for a nice addition to the indoors, smaller pieces can adorn bookcases or fireplace mantles, while larger pieces can greet people as they come in the door, or decorate a forgotten corner of an office or living room.

What pieces from your garden have you already brought indoors? Statues? Potted Plants? Fountains? We'd love to hear your decorating ideas!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Music on a Breeze

Bells and breezes seem to go together well. Especially when you are talking about wind chimes. Wind chimes are really nothing more than bells created in a way to catch the wind to make music for us.

Wind chimes can be created from many objects, whether you string together small cowbells or craft bells, use found objects such as seashells, or recycle objects such as aluminum cans, each material has its own sound when the wind gently rattles the pieces together to create sounds specifically for you and your world on your porch, patio, or balcony.

Spring is definitely the time of year when most people spend time on their porches, having visitors, reading a book, enjoying a barbeque, so this is also the time of year that many rush off to gather trinkets to decorate their yards with, to improve their curb appeal. Don't forget while decorating to think about the sound aspect of your yard or garden.

Friday, March 16, 2012

History of the Chuck Wagon

Chuck wagons became a necessity out west, they were mobile kitchens that fed farmhands on huge ranches, were part of wagon trains, or fed loggers on the job. The first Chuck wagon was invented in 1866, and quickly became a hub at campsites for social interaction among the men as well as a place for food.

Common equipment in a chuck wagon:
Dutch Ovens
Sour dough keg
Buck saw
Portable pantry
Graniteware Coffee Pot
Coffee grinder
Tin plates and cups
Water dippers
Burlap sacks
Pot scrubbers
Water Barrels
Dinner Bell
and whatever else the cook needed, personal or otherwise.

Most meals fixed on a chuck wagon consisted of biscuits, coffee, beans, and beef. Occasionally the cook would make desert from dried fruit.

Old Wagon Train from US National Archives

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

What was a Towncrier/Bellman

Back before we had television, radio, and internet to communicate announcements and news, towns had a town crier or a bellman that would rink a hand bell and shout out the public announcements from the court and other public facilities.

First, they would ring the bell and shout out "Hear Ye!" or "Oyez!" (Oyez also means hear ye).

These men were the main way that people were able to keep up with news and announcements in Medieval times as during those days most people were illiterate and were unable to read new papers or other types of postings. Town criers announced proclamations, local bylaws, market days, and adverts.

Some town criers also had lanterns when they would make announcements of the time or news at night:

Town Crier Lantern

Friday, January 20, 2012

Why do cows wear cow bells?

Cow bells are something that nearly everyone has heard of. Although, in the present day and time it is more likely that a cow bell will be found as a musical instrument rather than found strung around the neck of a cow. So in that case why are they called cow bells, do cows still wear them, and what point do cowbells on a cow serve?

Well today we are going to find the answers to some of those questions for you.

Why are they called cow bells?

At one point in time you would almost never see a cow that did not have the lovely adornment of a bell around her neck. Each movement she made would result in a delightful tinkle of sound that would be emitted from the bell. Since it was only cows for the most point that were wearing them they became known as cow bells, even though some farmers also used them for sheep.

Do cows still wear them?

Not as much as they used to it seems. Very rarely do we see cow bells on the cows in southwest Virginia. But we have read that they are still widely used on cows in Switzerland and out west where farmers still have much more acreage than we have here.

cowbell on cow

What point does the cow bell serve on a cow?

Especially before the days of tagging cows, a cow bell was how a farmer would identify which cows were his if they got mixed in with another farmer's herd. Also, it made wandering cows easier to locate so that they could bring them back home.

Bells are...

Bells are many things. They are often found in holiday decor, or heard at big events such as ball games or weddings. They have been around for many centuries, used in church services, or just as a reminder of where one's cattle have wandered off to.

Bells can be customized for promoting a business, event, or cause. They can also be personalized for ornaments for the Christmas tree or for wedding bell favors at someone's nuptials.

wedding bell pic

Bells have been a part of nearly every culture for thousands of years and still remain a big part of our cultures to this day. Many people have a favorite type of bell or have a story that they remember about bells. We'd love to hear your bell story.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Ringing in the New Year

Many people have heard the phrase "ring in the New Year". But what does ringing in the new year mean?

When one thinks of the term ring in, usually a bell is thought of, mainly because bells ring. So what do bells have to do with the New Year?

Most old churches in many countries have large bells on them. These bells were used to let the community know when church was beginning, and also told of events. One of these events was of course the New Year. When one heard the church bells ringing on New Years day they would say that they were ringing in the New Year.

Today, some older churches still practice the custom of ringing in the new year, but the phrase has also taken on a new meaning. Many people use the phrase to indicate that they are celebrating the New Year.

So how did you ring in 2012?

steel hand bell
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