Fire Pit Safety & Tips

Landmann Bif Sky Firepit

What’s better than sitting around a warm fire with family and friends, roasting marshmallows and relaxing? We can’t think of much! With October upon us, it’s the perfect season to light up those fire pits and get to roasting – but it’s important to make sure you and your loved ones remain safe while basking by the fire.

For National Fire Prevention Week, Waters True Value offers a few tips to help make your fire pit sessions safer than ever.



What you’ll need:

  1. location, Location, LOCATION

Whether you’re building your own fire pit or using one already assembled, you need to be sure you’re placing it in an area of your property that is safe for you and your neighbors. The wind (which our Kansas folks are used to) can blow smoke and sparks around, so don’t put the fire pit too close to doors or windows. You also want to stay up to date on any burn bans or burn ordinances that might be in effect in your area. Make sure there is plenty of space all the way around the fire pit – you don’t want it singeing any plants or fences that could be potential fire hazards. A safe distance would be to have the fire pit at least 10 feet from nearby structures.

  1. Getting Your Flames Started

First thing’s first – don’t try to start a fire with gasoline, no matter what you’ve seen in the movies. It is dangerous. You’ll want to start small and add to the fire. Place a crumbled piece of newspaper or a store-bought fire starter in the center of the pit, then stack a layer of small sticks on top and light it all with a match or multipurpose lighter. As the fire builds, continue adding larger and larger sticks. Add your firewood carefully, slowly adding more as the fire grows.

  1. Simmer Down

Never leave a fire unaccompanied! When you’re ready to call it a day, use a bucket of water or hose to drown out the flames and stir the ashes with a poker. Continue this process until everything in the pit is cold to the touch. Collect the ashes in a metal bucket used for ashes only and leave it outside overnight. Douse with water again in the morning before discarding the ashes in a trash can.

Interested in the product shown in the image above? We carry it! Order it online here or stop in your local Waters True Value store today.

Green Lights for Veterans!

There’s a movement to light up neighborhoods across the US with green in honor of veterans this November 11. We are humbled by the service of our military personnel, so we’re all about this endeavor!

Except for one small problem…it appears green lightbulbs are in short supply. So we found three easy ways to turn those green lights on at your house and in your neighborhoods…and what a great way to get your kids involved in an awesome project!

Break Out the Glue

via Barefoot Crafting

Mix up some Elmer’s Glue and green food coloring and you get a nice bright, but see through, green.


Green Glow

via A Pumpkin and a Princess
via A Pumpkin and a Princess

Mason Jars and glow in the dark paint, like this one from Rust-o-leum or this Krylon spray paint. Couple it with a battery operated tea light and the glow would be amazing!


Tissue Paper

via Etsy
via Etsy

Like the above projects, the goal is to line the jar to get its green color – this one uses tissue paper, Mod Podge and a battery operated candle.


Which project do you like the best, have another great tip? Let us know!


Pie Anyone?




To all the pie lovers out there, the bakers, the eaters…let’s all just sit for a minute and look at that yummy goodness.

These little babies have arrived just in time for the holidays. Grab yourself a pie crust, beat 3 eggs and mix with gently heated pecan mixture, follow baking instructions and voila! You just made a pie!

Perfect for entertaining, for a fun way to ‘let the kids help’, or for yourself on a lazy Sunday afternoon.

It’s also available in Chocolate Pecan. Swoon.

Happy Fall!  Sally


5 Clever Products You’ll Love

Every time I’m in one of our stores, I find something new that makes my geek meter go up.  Here are my top 5 products you’ve got to try from Waters True Value, right now.


Sugru is amazing. Hands down one of the coolest products I’ve ever seen. Its sole purpose is to fix stuff. Like duct tape, but better than duct tape. First, it’s mouldable. You can transform it into any shape – filling gaps, replace missing parts, or turn it into something standalone, like a hook or door stop. It bonds to almost anything, metal, ceramic, glass, wood and most plastics. It’s flexible like rubber and once set it’s sturdy, yet soft. It’s incredibly strong and can be used indoors and out. Their web site has a ton of examples on how to use it, from practical to awesome.


These products are the end result of years of research, which is comforting to me as I now know that the active ingredient, permethrin, is so tightly bonded to the cloth that it is supposed to provide insect repellent protection for the life of the cloth (a little awesome and freaky at the same time)! It’s odorless, safe to use, and repels all of the icky bugs you can think of (the tick is the worst I can think of and yup, it repels those.). Waters carries blankets, perfect for picnics, watching your kids play sports, or an afternoon playing outside. There are also bandanas for working in the garden, exercising outdoors or maybe you just like to relax on the deck in the evening like me. Whatever your circumstance, Insect Shield is there to provide you an insect-free time without having to douse yourself in chemicals. Score. 


A lot of these products I try not to think too deeply about how they work. It makes my brain hurt. The silicone products from Charles Viancin are a perfect example of that. I don’t know how they work, I just love that they do. They’re made of silicone and will seal to stainless steal, glass, plastic and ceramics. There are lids, strainers, bottle stoppers, and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. But those are just the facts – here’s the real skinny: they can go in your oven, microwave, and dishwasher. (You can even put the colander in a pot of boiling water with noodles, then just lift and drain!)They’re pretty, so you can relish in the admiration when you take something over to a friend’s house or while you’re entertaining. And they’re great for the environment, no more plastic wrap or aluminum foil. This is truly a revolutionary product and more people need to know about it. For real. 


Perfect for the person in your life who loves gadgets – or the one who consistently overcooks your food (ahem. You know who you are.) This device measures the temp of your food and alerts you on your phone when it’s ready.  Your days of being a slave to the BBQ are over. You can now play a game of catch, help set the table or relax while grilling.


As soon as I saw the gear tie I fell in love. When trying to clean and organize, there’s never enough container and hook options to solve every problem. I always end up with oddball objects that sort of grow into an unmanageable pile. Enter the solution: Gear Ties. Gear ties come in all sorts of sizes and strengths. They are strong and bend to any shape, they’re textured so it makes them grippy, and they can be used and reused. You’re only limited by your imagination. And if that’s not good enough, check out their web site for tips. 🙂 

The best thing about all of these items is that they serve a practical purpose. They’re not all gimmick and no follow-through, they’re something you will use over and over again. And there’s nothing that feels better than buying something that is quirky yet practical and responsible. Yay you! 

10 Reasons Renting is AWESOME.

When I think of items you can rent, well…it’s more on the mundane side. Been there, done that. Wood Floor Sander? Check. Post Hole Digger? Check. Sigh. Moving on…

But in the course of my work, I’ve happened upon a GOLD MINE of items for rent at WTV. I’m so stoked about them, I’m thinking party at my house every weekend this summer.

1. Bungee Run

I can seriously see myself as the lady on the left. Going all out…meaning business…taking no names. Pure awesome.

Bungee Run - Waters True Value Rental
Bungee Run – Waters True Value Rental Photo from

2. Sticky Wall

Oh, you had a sticky wall at your party this last weekend? No biggie. Just the MOST. FUN. EVER.

Sticky Wall Waters True Value Rental;
Sticky Wall – photo by Gary Cosby Jr. 4/18/07

3. Foam Pit

I can’t expand on the greatness of a foam pit with mere words. It’s just too amazing for that. For real.

Foam Pit Rental Waters True Value Rental
Foam Pit – Waters True Value Rental. Photo by

4. Tug-of-War

This gets my competitive blood totally boiling. The smack talk and taunting would reach EPIC levels at my house.

Tug of War Inflatable- Waters True Value Rental
Tug of War Inflatable – Waters True Value Rental . Photo by:

5. Nacho Cheese Dispenser

You don’t really need a party to enjoy this one. Nacho Cheese is a good idea anytime in my book.

Nacho Cheese Dispenser - Waters True Value Rental
Nacho Cheese Dispenser – Waters True Value Rental

6. Dunk Tank

The major perk of dunk tanks are that you get to see your friends/boss/teacher/strangers look like this:

Dunk Tank Fun & Games - Waters True Value Rental
Dunk Tank Fun & Games – Waters True Value Rental Photo by:

7.  Obstacle Course

Wait. You mean I can create my very own Total Wipeout (dry)?? Done and Done.

Obstacle Course Waters True Value Rental
Obstacle Course Waters True Value Rental

8.  Slushie Machine

The practicalities of this are obvious. Kid’s birthday parties, grown up parties…facial slushies…say no more.

Slushie Machine - Waters True Value Rental: Photo Cred: Robert Dant NY Times
Slushie Machine – Waters True Value Rental: Photo Cred: Robert Dant NY Times

9. Big Ol’ Grill

Did you ever want to be the one that manned the Big Ol’ Grill at a super duper party at your house? Yah, me neither. But if you know, you did…OWN IT on our Big Ol’ Grill. Yummy hot dog pic is just because it’s your lucky day.

Grills and Dogs. Waters True Value Rental  Photo Cred:
Grills and Dogs. Waters True Value Rental Photo Cred:

10. Wait for it…LASER TAG.

Want to whoop up on your kids? Rent this and start practicing NOW. Find their weaknesses and prepare to dominate.

Laser Tag Done the Right Way - Waters True Value Rental. Photo Cred: Tippman  Sports
Laser Tag Done the Right Way – Waters True Value Rental. Photo Cred: Tippman Sports


Who knew Waters Rental was after my very own heart? Sigh. I think I may be in love. What are you wanting to rent that you think will change your life forever?