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Household Tips
Bullet Ant Control:
  • Spread some ground cinnamon where you think the ants are coming in to the house.

  • Basil repels flies and mosquitoes. To deter ants, use catnip. Sprinkle it in their paths.

  • Make a mixture of 2/3 cup water, 1/3 cup white vinegar, and 2-3 Tablespoons dish soap. Spray where the ants are marching.
Bullet Natural Mosquito Repellents:
  • Splashing plain rubbing alcohol on yourself and allowing it to dry will deter mosquitoes from biting you.

  • Rub Vick's Vaporub® on your pants and legs to ward off ticks.

  • Use half vanilla (has to be pure vanilla) and half water and for a mosquito and tick repellent.

  • Dab lavender oil on your pulse points; it smells great on you but repels insects.
Bullet For Mouse Control:
  • Place USED kitty litter from a litter box in small tubs in several places around the garage. Mice think... "it smells like a cat--must be a cat - I'm outta here!".

  • Buy a mesh/net laundry bag that you would use for washing nylons and 5 boxes of moth balls. Put the moth balls in the bag and hang it in your garage near the door to get rid of mice, birds, and bugs.

  • To prevent mice from gaining entry to your garage, stop up any openings with steel wood pads. Mice will not chew through these!

  • Sprinkle ground cayenne pepper around the garage (inside & out), and especially near entry holes. Pests don't care for the smell of it.

  • Mice hate the scent of peppermint extract. Simply sprinkle *pure* peppermint extract on the items in your garage you don't want the mice in or on.
Bullet Before you wear a new garment, put a little clear nail polish on the front and back of each button. Buttons will stay on longer when their threads are sealed.
Bullet Zippers won't stick if you rub them with the edge of a bar of soap.
Bullet To remove a hem crease, sponge the material with white vinegar and press with a warm iron.
Bullet Nail polish remover removes tar and grease from white leather shoes.
Bullet White shoe polish will apply more evenly if you rub the shoes with a raw potato or rubbing alcohol before polishing.
Bullet White shoe polish won't smear if you spray the shoe with hair spray after it is dry.
Bullet Vinegar and water will remove salt stains from shoes and boots.
Bullet New white canvas shoes will stay that way if you spray them heavily with starch.
Bullet Clean rope trimmed shoes with a toothbrush dipped in rug shampoo.
Bullet For longer lasting pantyhose, try freezing them before you wear them. Just wet, wring out and toss in a plastic bag to freeze. Thaw and hang to dry.
Bullet Fresh eggs are rough and chalky . They will sink and stay horizontal on the bottom of a glass of water. The egg-white is viscous and close around the plump yolk.
Bullet Old eggs are smooth and shiny. They will float in a glass of water. The egg-white is watery and the yolk is flat in an egg roughly 3 weeks old.
Bullet Dried Herbs and spices lose their potency quickly. Buy only a small amount at a time. When using fresh herbs an spices, use 3 times the amount of the dried.
Bullet Perk up soggy lettuce by soaking in cold water with some lemon juice. To store place in a zip lock bag with paper towel to absorb moisture.
Bullet Never, never pour water on flaming fat or oil you'll spread the fire. If the fire's inside a pan, slap on the lid. If outside, turn off the heat and douse the flames by tossing on a handful of baking soda or salt.
Bullet Wax paper is endlessly useful. Use it: To catch grated cheese, to place under seasoned flour for breading or spices for blackening, to tear into strips to slip under a cake you are icing, to cover a dish you are microwaving.
Bullet Collect a large assortment of Chinese wooden paddles and spoons. Use them to save wear and tear on your good stainless steel and copper pots.
Bullet Instead of using plastic wrap to cover bowls in the microwave, cover a round heatproof glass bowl with a round heatproof glass casserole cover or with an inverted heatproof glass bowl of the same size. A heat-resistant round glass pizza pan also works well, and the overhang makes removal and recovery both safe and easy.
Bullet Use a lightweight pot for boiling pasta; water will come to its initial boil faster and will return to the boil faster, too, saving time and preventing the pasta from clumping at the bottom of the pot.
Bullet Before heating a nonstick pan, always coat it with nonstick vegetable cooking spray and never heat the pan more than 3 minutes before adding food.
Bullet To remove pesky bottle tops and jar lids, don a pair of rubber gloves. Or twist a fat rubber band around the lid, then twist open. Works like a charm.
Bullet If you store your best silver in self-sealing plastic bags, it will tarnish much more slowly.
Bullet When your cookbook won't lie flat when opened on the counter, place a glass baking dish on the pages (you can read through the glass) or secure each side with a rubber band.
Bullet Use top-quality typewriter correction fluid to cover nicks, chips, and scratches on enameled ranges and refrigerators, porcelain tiles, and sinks. Works like a charm and it comes in a variety of colors.
Bullet Never use disinfectants to clean the fridge, foods will pick up taste and odor.
Bullet When laundering clothes, add detergent to the washer first. Pouring detergent on clothing can cause fabrics to fade.
Bullet Apply spray starch to doors and to painted walls along hallways and stairways where fingerprints accumulate. The coating will resist marks better.
Bullet Place a piece of white chalk in your silver chest or jewel box to absorb moisture and help prevent tarnishing of silverware and jewelry.
Bullet Freezers run more efficiently when they're three-quarters or more full. When provisions drop, fill milk cartons or jugs with water and put them in the freezer to take up empty space.
Bullet Wiping the inside of the fridge with vinegar helps prevent mildew because acid kills mildew fungus.
Bullet For a fresh smelling fridge, keep a box of baking soda, a can filled with charcoal or dried coffee grounds or a cotton ball soaked in vanilla extract inside of it.
Bullet Crumbled newspapers lining the vegetable compartments of a refrigerator will keep veggies crisp.
Bullet Those beds of pansies will bloom more prolifically if you take a few moments to pinch out early buds. This encourages plants to bush out and, in the end, produce more flowers.
Bullet To keep your extension cords from getting tangled, insert them into a empty toilet paper roll to store.
Bullet Drain de-clogger: 1/4 cup baking soda and 1/4 cup vinegar. Pour baking soda down drain first then follow with the vinegar. Close drain and let sit until bubbling has stopped then follow with a bucket of hot boiling water.
Bullet Store eggs with the large end up to keep the yolk centered.
Bullet For perfect hard-cooked eggs, cover the eggs with cold water and bring to a boil. Then turn off the heat and let the eggs sit on the burner for 10-15 minutes.
Bullet Refrigerate candles for several hours before lighting; it will cause fewer drips.
Bullet Have you ever peeled garlic or handled it and your hands smell to high heaven? The next time that happens, take any stainless steel bowl, pan or other stainless steel kitchen gadget and rub your hands on it. It will take away the smell of garlic.
Bullet Lemon extract will remove scuff marks from luggage.
Bullet Dry Mustard will remove onion odors from your hands or cutting board. Rub in, then rinse off.
Bullet Place bay leaves in kitchen drawers and in flour and sugar sacks to keep crawling insects away.

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