Weekly Dollar Stretcher Tips for November 13, 2014


Nasty Wheels

I live in Wisconsin and the streets are salted more often than my dinner salad. I found that using a toilet brush works very well on the hub caps of my car, especially in the nooks and crannies. The toilet brush works well on the grill as well and won’t take the paint off.

Cleaning Stained Plastic

Did you know that hydrogen peroxide and baking soda can remove stains from plastic? Our kids have a plastic play table in the backyard. Over time, it had some stains on it (paint and markers). I used a scrub brush with a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. It took a little effort, but it cleaned up nicely!

Just Beyond DIY

My wife and I are DIYers, but occasionally we get into a project that’s beyond our comfort level. I’ve had good luck contacting my local union office and asking about one of their apprentices. Sometimes they’ll let the apprentice come out alone, but often a regular union member will supervise as part of the apprenticeship training. In either case, the cost is less than hiring a regular union worker.
Jefferson D.

Shipping Fragile?

I have a daughter in college that loves to receive care packages throughout the year. I also found a way to send her a much-needed item and save on wasted packing materials at the same time. I “lined” the box with rolls of toilet paper! The toilet paper is a great shock absorber for the trip through the mail, and it is an item she will definitely use and doesn’t add to the cost of mailing!
Lisa B. in Hopewell, VA

Easy Grill Cleaning

Many people use indoor grills. I discovered a great way to make clean-up a breeze. When you are finished cooking, turn off and unplug the grill. Place three soaking wet paper towels on the grill surface and close. The leftover heat will turn the water into steam, which will loosen any stuck-on food. After you’ve finished eating your meal, use the paper towels to wipe off the grill surface. It’s just like magic!

Cleaning a Messy Home

For many years, I was a single, working mother and learned this little tip, which saved me time and frustration. Each night after the children went to bed and I was ready for bed, I would go through the house and straighten up, pick up, and arrange things. Then when I got up in the morning, everything was neat and welcoming. I felt encouraged to start the day. I taught this to my children and they agree with me. It is discouraging to get up in the morning with the house a mess, and this method takes just a little time and leaves a person ready to start a new day.

Garbage Raiders!

My neighbors were complaining about raccoons, dogs, and other animals raiding their garbage cans. Often, they left a real mess to clean up. I told them what I do to prevent midnight garbage raids. I pour an ounce or two of ammonia into my trash container over the bags of garbage. Raiders think that another animal has ‘marked’ the territory with urine and will steer clear. It doesn’t take a lot, but it’s good to add a little on a weekly basis to keep the smell fresh. It sure beats sweeping up a bunch of scattered trash!

No Chemical Flea Control

Would you like to get rid of fleas in your home without using nasty chemicals? Try this. This time of year it’s easy to find crab or horse apples. Gather a few. Cut them in half and place the halves around the baseboards in any rooms that contain fleas.

For some reason, fleas hate the smell and will leave. And, even if your pets or kids get into the apples, the worst they’ll get is a tummy ache!

Natural Health and Beauty Care

I use baking soda as toothpaste and breath deodorizer. I keep a jar of baking soda beside my sink. I dip my toothbrush into the jar and then brush away. After I’m finished brushing my teeth, I put a little on my toothbrush and brush both the top and bottom of my tongue.

Finally, I use a little as a soft facial scrub. It works great to keep my skin super smooth!

Keep the Glow

Don’t toss that ghoulish, glow-in-the-dark nail polish your kids got for Halloween! Put the bottle in your tool kit, as it is handy around the house.

For instance, dab some of the polish on light switches, flashlights, house keys, stair rails, the fuse box, the front door lock or other things you may need when it’s dark. There will be no more fumbling around trying to locate these items when everything is pitch black, such as during power failures or times you have to get up in the night. The painted-on polish will glow, so you can easily find something.

Buy Pumpkins Now!

I cringe when I see all the pumpkins going to waste as decorations. I buy pumpkins after Halloween for a song. I wash them and poke holes in them with a knife. Then I put them in the oven on a large pan and bake until the skin turns a little brown to black. I then remove them from the oven and set them aside until they cool enough to handle. I cut them into two pieces, scoop out the seeds, and then scoop out all the pumpkin, which is extremely soft. I put it into freezer bags and freeze. I have pumpkin for pumpkin bread, pumpkin soup, pumpkin hotcakes and waffles, etc.

Last year, I bought my pumpkins from a pumpkin patch the day after Halloween. They said that I could have all I wanted for $5. My daughters and I had enough pumpkin frozen for each of us to last a year. And don’t forget pumpkin is a vegetable.
Joann S.


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