Household Tips & Hints

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Not all of these deal with food and many people keep asking about this kind of stuff even though many sites have this information, but since everyone has asked, then I know where people are hanging out. So, if you have something you would like to include, send an email.

Tips For Surviving Severe Weather.

Recently we were at a Captain D's restaurant and I couldn't believe how greasy the food was. The older couple next to us heard my comments and said they go to this type of place once a month. They are retired and are traveling, they found out from others through the years that if you eat at a greasy spoon place once a month then when you travel to a new place and eat the food, your body won't be so shocked from mainly greasy food, food still cooked in that old bad saturated oil. I was really surprised that as popular as Captain D's is, that there food would be so greasy. This goes under one of those fact or fiction, the couple swears by it and have had no trouble while they are traveling.

Mosquito Remedy

So you don't like those pesky mosquitoes, especially now that they have the potential to carry the West Nile Virus? Here's a tip that was given at a recent gardening forum. Put some water in a white dinner plate and add a couple drops of Lemon Fresh Joy dish detergent. Set the dish on your porch, patio, or other outdoor area. Not sure what attracts them, the lemon smell, the white plate color, or what, but mosquitoes flock to it, and drop dead shortly after drinking the Lemon Fresh Joy/water mixture, and usually within about 10 feet of the plate. Check this out---it works just super!

Moisture got your salt in a block? Add some rice to your salt shaker; it will absorb moisture and, because it's larger than the holes, will stay inside. Change it periodically, especially when you refill the shaker.

When rolling cookie dough, sprinkle board with powdered sugar instead of flour. Too much flour makes the dough heavy.

When freezing cookies with a frosting, place them in the freezer unwrapped for about 2 hours - then wrap without worrying about them sticking together.

Once tofu is opened, it will keep for a week in the refrigerator, but the water must be changed daily.

A slice of bread placed into a bag of hardened brown sugar will soften it again in a couple of hours.

Potatoes will bake in a hurry if they are boiled in salted water for 10 minutes before popping into a very hot oven.

A leftover baked potato can be re-baked if you dip it in water and bake in a 350°F oven for 20 minutes.

A thin slice from each end of the potato will speed up baking time as well.

You'll shed less tears if you cut off the root end of the onion last.

No more tears when peeling onions if you place them in the freezer for 4 or 5 minutes first.

Scalding tomatoes, peaches or pears in boiling water before peeling makes it easier on you and the fruit - skins slip right off.

Riper green fruits by placing them in a perforated plastic bag - the holes allow air movement, yet retain the odorless gas the fruits produce to promote ripening.

To hasten the ripening of garden tomatoes or avocados, put them in a brown paper bag, close the bag and leave at room temperature for a few days.

When pan frying, heat the pan before adding butter or oil.

A little salt sprinkled into the frying pan will prevent spattering.

Meat loaf will not stick if you place a slice of bacon on the bottom of the pan.

Vinegar brought to a boil in a new frying pan will prevent foods from sticking.

Muffins will slide right out of tin pans if you first place the hot pan on a wet towel.

Scalded milk will not stick to the pan if you first rinse the pan with cold water.

A cup of water added to the bottom portion of a broiler pan will absorb smoke and grease.
A few teaspoons of sugar and cinnamon slowly burned on top of the stove will hide unpleasant cooking odors (and make folks think you've been baking all day!).

A lump of butter or a few ts of cooking oil added to water when boiling rice, noodles or spaghetti will prevent boiling over.

Rubbing the inside of the cooking vessel with vegetable oil will also prevent noodles, spaghetti and similar starches from boiling over.

A few drops of lemon juice added to simmering rice will keep the grains separate.

Grating a stick of butter softens it quickly.

Soften butter for spreading by inverting a small heated pan over the butter dish for a while.

A dip of the spoon or cup into hot water before measuring shortening or butter will cause the fat to slip out easily without sticking to the spoon.

Before measuring honey or other syrup, oil the cup with cooking oil and rinse in hot water.

Catsup will flow evenly out of the bottle if you first insert a drinking straw to the bottom of the bottle and remove.

If you wet the dish on which the gelatin is to be unmolded, it can be moved around until centered.

A sealed envelope - Put in the freezer for a few hours, then slide a knife under the flap. The envelope can then be resealed.

Use Empty toilet paper roll to store appliance cords. It keeps them neat and you can write on the roll what appliance it belongs to.

For icy door steps in freezing temperatures, get warm water and put Dawn dish washing liquid in it. Pour it all over the steps. They won't refreeze.

To remove old wax from a glass candle holder, put it in the freezer for a few hours. Then take the candle holder out and turn it upside down. The wax will fall out.

Crayon marks on walls? This worked wonderfully! A damp rag, dipped in baking soda. Comes off with little effort (elbow grease that is!).

Permanent marker on appliances/counter tops (like store receipt BLUE!) rubbing alcohol on paper towel.

Whenever I purchase a box of S.O.S Pads, I immediately take a pair of scissors and cut each pad into halves. After years of having to throw away rusted and unused and smelly pads, I finally decided that this would be much more economical. Now a box of S.O.S pads last me indefinitely! In fact, I have noticed that the scissors get 'sharpened'' this way!

Blood stains on clothes? Not to worry! Just pour a little hydrogen peroxide on a cloth and proceed to wipe off every drop of blood. Works every time!

Use vertical strokes when washing windows outside and horizontal for inside windows. This way you can tell which side has the streaks. Straight vinegar will get outside windows really clean. Don't wash windows on a sunny day. They will dry too quickly and will probably streak.

Spray a bit of perfume on the light bulb in any room to create a lovely light scent in each room when the light is turned on.

Place fabric softener sheets in dresser drawers and your clothes will smell freshly washed for weeks to come. You can also do this with towels and linen.

Candles will last a lot longer if placed in the freezer for at least 3 hours prior to burning.

To clean artificial flowers, pour some salt into a paper bag and add the flowers. Shake vigorously as the salt will absorb all the dust and dirt and leave your artificial flowers looking like new! Works like a charm!

To easily remove burnt on food from your skillet, simply add a drop or two of dish soap and enough water to cover bottom of pan, and bring to a boil on stove top, just to a boil, shut off and let pan sit foor about an hour, for me I can usually scrap it away and then wash.

Spray your Tupperware with nonstick cooking spray before pouring in tomato based sauces and there won't be any stains.

Wrap celery in aluminum foil when putting in the refrigerator and it will keep for weeks.

When boiling corn on the cob, add a pinch of sugar to help bring out the corn's natural sweetness.

Cure for headaches: Take a lime, cut it in half, and rub it on your forehead. The throbbing will go away.

Don't throw out all that leftover wine, freeze into ice cubes for future use in casseroles and sauces.

To get rid of itch from mosquito bites, try applying soap on the area and you will experience instant relief.

Ant problems? Well, it's said they never cross a chalk line. So, get your chalk out and draw a line on the floor or wherever ants tend to march. Check it out for yourself.

Use air-freshener to clean mirrors. It does a good job and better still, leaves a lovely smell to the shine.

When you get a splinter, reach for the scotch tape before resorting to tweezers or a needle. Simply put the scotch tape over the splinter, and then pull it off. Scotch tape removes most splinters painlessly and easily.

The popular Alka Seltzer, now for cleaning.

Clean a toilet.
Drop in two Alka Seltzer tablets, wait twenty minutes, brush and flush. The citric acid and effervescent action clean vitreous China.

Clean a vase.
To remove a stain from the bottom of a glass vase or cruet, fill with water and drop in two Alka Seltzer tablets.

Polish jewelry.
Drop two Alka Seltzer tablets into a glass of water and immerse the jewelry for two minutes.

Clean a thermos bottle.
Fill the bottle with water, drop in four Alka Seltzer tablets, and let soak for an hour (or longer, if necessary).

Unclog a drain.
Clear the sink drain by dropping three Alka Seltzer tablets down the drain followed by a cup of White Vinegar. Wait a few minutes, and then run the hot water.

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