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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Homemaking Tips Assortment

Sprinkle baking soda in your veggies crisper and cover with a cloth or paper towel for crispier veggies that last longer.

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Sprinkle baking soda onto a damp sponge for cleaning out your refrigerator and counter tops without scratching.

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Dissolve a couple of tablespoons of baking soda in water in a microwave safe bowl, and then bring to the boil in your microwave. Allow to sit for a minute or two, then you should easily be able to wipe out any baked on stains, plus your oven will microwave will smell fresher too.

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Sprinkling baking soda in the bottom of rubbish bags will help to control odors as you add trash.

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To give your dishwasher a good clean, run it through a cycle and use baking soda instead of detergent.

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Baking soda can be thrown on stove fires to extinguish the flames. The carbon dioxide generated when the powder burns starves the fire of oxygen.

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Wash chemicals and pesticides off fruits and vegetables in a pot filled with water and 3 - 4 tablespoons of baking soda added.

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On a somewhat related note, here's something interesting I came across. Baking soda is sometimes used when boiling vegetables to preserve their color. That practice is not recommended as it destroys the vitamin C content of vegetables.

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Anywhere that moisture is a problem, such as cupboards under sinks, place a bowl of baking soda to help control humidity. You'll need to occasionally stir the powder for maximum effective life.

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Crayon marks on walls? Try applying baking soda/water paste on an old toothbrush and lightly brush the affected area.

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Water stains on wooden floors can be removed with a sponge dampened in a solution of baking soda dissolved in water.

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You can save money on baking soda by re-using it. For example, once it has served its purpose as a fridge deodorizer you can put it down your sink to help keep your drains clear.

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Sprinkle some baking soda into your vacuum bag to help reduce musty/pet smells being spread throughout your house when vacuuming.

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Sprinkle baking soda on rugs and carpets before vacuuming as a deodorizing treatment. Most carpet powders you buy are baking soda based! WARNING - not recommended for areas that are very humid as the baking soda may stay in the carpet.

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Mops can really stink out areas where they are stored. If your mop is getting on the nose, don't throw it out, try soaking it in a mixture of 4 tablespoons baking soda and a gallon of water for a while.

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Stains on porcelain sinks, toilets and plastics can be removed by applying a layer of baking soda and then using a damp sponge. This works particularly well on water stains in a sink that couldn't be removed otherwise without the use of heavy duty chemicals and scratching the surface.

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As an alternative to caustic soda for clearing blocked drains, throw a cup of baking soda down the drain, followed by a couple of jugs of boiling water.

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A thick paste of baking soda and water applied to bug bites can provide relief.

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Work a baking soda and water paste onto stains prior to washing to help remove them from the fabric.

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TO CLEAN A METAL RANGE HOOD OVER STOVE

Give each greasy seam, fold or corner a short blast with a hair dryer. Wipe it clean with a cloth. Finish up with a spray cleaner or a mild vinegar solution.

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CANDLE WAX ON WOOD SURFACES

Soften with a hair dryer for a few seconds then wipe with paper towels. Or use a stiff piece of cardboard to scrape off in the direction of the grain.

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KEEP CELERY FRESH

Cut the top out of a 2 liter soda bottle, fill it halfway with water, then use it to store celery in the refrigerator.

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MILDEWED GROUT

Make a paste of baking soda and warm water; apply to grout with a old toothbrush. Let sit until dry, then wipe off. If stain persists, rub with a cottonball soaked with bleach, then rinse well.

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GREASE SPOTS BEHIND STOVE

Rub with heavy duty household cleaner and a plastic scrubbing pad. When the wall is clean, apply a coat of paste wax. Future spots will come off easily.

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GREASY DIRT ON MINIBLINDS

Put on a pair of old cotton gardening gloves. Dip them into a mixture of household cleaner and warm water. Then run your fingers along each slat, top and bottom. Rinse.

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SOAP SCUM ON SHOWER DOORS

Wipe with a solution of white vinegar and warm water, or spray with laundry prewash. If scum is heavy, scour with a nylon scrubbing pad. Rinse.

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DIRTY PATIO DOOR TRACKS

Wrap a terrycloth rag around a screwdriver, spray with all purpose cleaner and make several passes along the track.

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GRIMY PORTABLE FAN

Vacuum dust off grille with brush attachment. Use a hair dryer on cool setting to blow dust off blades. If the grille comes off, wipe blades with a household cleaner and damp cloth. Dry.

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DUSTY DRAPES OR CURTAINS

Run the window treatment through the dryer on the no heat setting with a damp towel to attract the dust. Rehang immediately

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Getting Scuffmarks Off Patent Leather

Use a microfiber cloth or pencil eraser to rub off the marks. If they still remain, dip a cotton swab into rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol and swipe over the scuffed area. Then wipe off with a clean cloth.

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How to Clean Your Feather Duster

If your duster is made of real feathers like ostrich, first pour a box of cornstarch into a strong plastic bag. Push the duster into it and tightly wrap the top of the plastic around the handle. Shake it really well and the cornstarch will clean the feathers. Take outside to shake off any leftover cornstarch.

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FIDO PROOF YOUR FLOWER PATCH

By sprinkling a dash of cayenne pepper over his favorite digging spots. When Fido sticks his nose where it doesnt belong, the spice will make him sneeze.

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FRESHEN A MUSTY GARAGE

Spread a layer of cat litter in a shallow pan and place in an inconspicuous spot. The granules will soak up the moisture in the air.

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A BRILLIANT WAY TO REMOVE RUST RINGS

Simply squeeze a dollop of non gel toothpaste onto a wet washcloth and gently rub it across the rings in a circular motion. Rinse clean.

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QUICK SAVE FOR SCORCH MARKS ON FABRICS BY IRONING

Salvage then by lightly grazing the spot with a piece of sandpaper.

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A FRESHER SMELLING HUMIDIFIER

Pour 3 tsp lemon juice into the water. The juice neutralizes the odor and leaves behind a fresh citrus fragrance.

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Keep a loaf of French bread in your freezer. When you are ready to use it, just slice off the amount you need and return the rest to the freezer. It's easier to slice and butter this way and you don't leave any to dry out or get old.

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When making pancakes, waffles, or French toast, always cook all the batter or, in the case of the French toast, make a few extra pieces to place in the freezer for those hectic mornings. Just pop them in the toaster and use them like you would use the expensive ones you find in your freezer section at the grocery store.

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Do the same with extra sausage patties. Freeze them and then when you have leftover biscuits, slide one into each biscuit and freeze the whole thing for a quick sausage and biscuit sandwich to take with you.

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On those exhausting days or the days when you're too late getting home to fix dinner, have a breakfast night and let each person pick their own favorite frozen breakfast food like the ones mentioned above. If you have the strength, fry some ham or bacon and cut up some fresh fruit to go with it.

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Was watching a cooking show one day and one of the guests said to put your plastic wrap in the freezer and it would come off the roll and not stick to it's self before you could get it where you need and guess what it works!


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