Sunday, August 28, 2011

Half a Dozen Odds and Ends

Maggie writes:
Here are just a few ways to "think outside the box." I hoped to think of more, but the baby is a Brain Vampire these days, and it is hard to be clever.

Pizza cutters are a more versatile than you may know! Don't tuck them away for the sole purpose of pizza duty. Break them out for halving just about any sort of sandwich, wraps or quesadillas! That's not all! Need to coin hot dogs or kielbasa sausages? Lay several down at once and zip on through the lot of 'em. It makes quick work of a potentially tedious task.

Get a small soap dispenser bottle, put white vinegar in it and set it by your kitchen sink. Use a squirt or two to get rid of onion and garlic smells as needed.

If you have a small child who loves small puzzles (no bigger than a pizza box), go to your local pizza place and ask for a few unused boxes. Keep all the puzzle pieces safe and sound with the work in progress.

Just got done finely grating an orange (or cheese, ginger, etc., etc...) and now you need to get everything out of the tiny holes of your grater? Take your handy dandy vegetable brush and go to town! Don't have one? Keep a spare (clean!) tooth brush handy to get into all those little nooks and crannies.

White boards aren't the only things you can use dry erase markers on! Go to your local dollar store and find posters that have been laminated (MUST be laminated!!). The ones I've seen are about the size of your standard freezer-on-top door. Stick it up there however you'd like it, and go to town with reminders, lists and doodles. My children adore the snot out of those markers, and if yours do, too, stock up at the dollar store while you're there.

Have you caught a cold and are hacking up a lung? A friend of mine told me about a whacky cure that really works! Slather Vapor Rub on the bottoms of your feet (or the sicko loved one's), put on a pair of socks and go to bed. It worked for my baby, and I've had relief from this method as well.

Well? What about you, loyal readers and fellow bloggers? Any crazy methods of Gettin' it Done that have worked for you? Do tell!

Millie chips in:

Oh, I might be able to think of a FEW:

If you use dryer sheets, use the spent sheet to clean the lint trap after each load. The fuzz will stick to the fibers and NOT to you.

Speaking of dryer sheets, use only a non-scented variety; use fragrance-free soap, as well. This serves two purposes: if someone with whom you regularly come in contact has asthma or allergies, you will not trigger an attack; and if not, the scent of your clothing will not clash with the scent of your chosen perfume.

Ditto deodorant. While we're on that subject, can we PLEASE agree that "Axe" smells like the smoky flatus of a thousand diseased yaks and somehow get that point across to the male population?

If you don't want to use harsh chemicals around kids and pets, try pouring boiling water directly onto dandelions and other weeds. That'll l'arn 'em.

Making cookies? Make twice as much and freeze half the dough for a day when you're not feeling quite as energetic.

If you can stand the look (some of us can't), let your child use a sleeping bag on top of the mattress rather than conventional linens. The kid will love it and this approach solves the "make your bed, dammit!" argument for good. Get one that's machine-washable; if your kid still wets the bed, just slide one of those big rubberized-flannel pads in under him and hope for the best.

It's too late to do it this year but next year, when you're planting those hanging baskets (we have such hope in our hearts when we're doing that, don't we?), slip a coffee filter into the bottom of the pot. This will not only keep the dirt from running out through the drain-holes, it will help hold the water in the pot just a teense longer - a big consideration considering how quickly pots and planters dry out when it's hot like it is now. I've even heard of people who slip half a sponge in the bottom of the plant, but I've never tried that one myself - have you?

1 comment:

  1. If you have one of those annoying, dry coughs that kicks in at night and won't let you sleep, here's one from my mom that's just WEIRD, but eerily effective.

    Saturate a dishcloth, bandana, or handkerchief etc. with very cold water. Wring it out and shake it to start the evaporation process. Fold it into a long strip and wrap it around your neck. Then wrap a dry towel around it and pin it so that it stays in place. Sleep soundly with out a cough. It's odd, but it works!


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