Monday, February 7, 2011

How to Take Links out of a Watch Band, Using a Push Pin

These are your tools.  Also, you will need needlenose pliers, but I forgot to photograph them. 

This tuturial is mainly for men's watches, but some women's watches have metal links in them  as well.  If you look at the links of your watch and you see a spot for a pin on each side of several links, then this method will work for you. 

First, determine where you will remove the links.  This is pretty much up to you, but you might want to remove an even amount from each side of the clasp.  However, the watch from which I removed links had a lot more links on one side than the other, so I just took out from one side. 

Next, you need to determine the side on which you must hammer the pins.  Sorry that I don't have a photo of this step, but my big pretty camera is packed away right now and I suck at putting things back, so...
Anyway, if you look closely at the watch pin ends on each side, you will notice that one side has a line through the end of the pin that is more noticeable than the other side, which will either be smooth or have a less prominent line.  You want to pound on the side with the smooth/less prominent line.  This is because many watch pins are just longer pins folded in half, and the lined side is sometimes notched or slightly larger so it can "snap" in place.  If you pound on this side, you will be forcing the pin through a hole that is too small for one side, and your pin will bend.  Boo.  Luckily, if you screw this up, you will likely find out pretty quickly, and hey, you are removing links anyway so you have pins to spare.

Line up your pushpin with the pinhole, and make sure your watch is on a semi-soft surface to allow the pin to poke out the other side.

 Carefully tap it with your hammer, you will probably hit your fingers a few times here.  Well, I did...

If you look at my pointer finger, you can see a little stub sticking out of the side of the watch band.  Take your needlenose pliers and pull out the pin. Note the differences on the ends and make sure you know which direction you need it to go when you put it back.

Repeat this step on the other side of the link you want to remove.

 Now you have a little section of links and a long, disconnected watch band. 

 Now you want to piece the remaining links back together, and push a pin in as far as you can get it with your finger. 

 GENTLY, put your needlenose pliers on either side of the watch band and push the pin the rest of the way back into place.  Finally, enjoy your newly fitted watch and the gas and money you saved not taking it to the jeweler!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Awww, Yeah.

My Favorite Cookie Recipe

Believe it or not, these were made in a toaster oven!  They can be made in a conventional oven, but my oven sucks and it undercooks anything in the front while burning stuff in the back.  Plus, these cookies require no flour.  I'm always out of either flour or sugar, so this recipe suits me.  I made it from a combination of different recipes I've found online, and, through trial and error, made it my own.  I hope you like it!

Ashley's Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup natural peanut butter (Smuckers makes a good version)
1 cup sugar (Splenda can be substituted if desired)
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
olive oil (to grease your pan)

Preheat your oven (or toaster oven) to 350. Mix all ingredients in a bowl, in no particular order.  The batter will be a little wet.  Shape the batter as best you can into walnut-sized balls and place on a greased baking sheet, about 1 1/2 inches apart. press down slightly with a fork to make the signature peanut butter cookie imprint.  Bake for 10-12 minutes until cookies only appear slightly moist. 

You don't want to dry them out completely.  If you are cooking with Splenda, reduce your baking time by 2 minutes or your cookies will be so dry you will choke on the dust that comes off the first bite you take.  Trust me on this one.

Cool the cookies for five minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.  They will be quite fragile until they cool.  Makes about 12-14 cookies.  Enjoy!