At­tack nasty laun­dry odours with bo­rax

Winnipeg Free Press - Section F - - HOMES - REENA NERBAS

QUES­TION: I’m hop­ing that you can of­fer a so­lu­tion for my daugh­ter. She re­cently had her dirty laun­dry sorted on the floor of her laun­dry area in the base­ment of her home. Un­for­tu­nately, her sewer line backed up and the base­ment sewer drain is right in front of her wash­ing ma­chine. Some of her clothes ended up soaked with sewage and now she can’t get the smell out of her clothes. She washed them im­me­di­ately the con­ven­tional way, then washed them again and tried adding vine­gar to the wash­ing ma­chine — still no luck at re­mov­ing that nasty odour. I’m think­ing that us­ing ex­tra fab­ric soft­ener in the wash is only go­ing to mask the odour for a short time but not elim­i­nate it to­tally. What else could she try in or­der to sal­vage her clothes? Thanks, Sharon (Bran­don)

AN­SWER: Be­fore re­wash­ing the cloth­ing, soak them in hot wa­ter and bo­rax. Bo­rax con­tains no phos­phates and no bleach and it is won­der­ful at zap­ping hard-to-han­dle odours. If you can­not lo­cate bo­rax, use a gen­er­ous amount of Oxy Clean or tea tree oil and vine­gar or bak­ing soda. Adding vine­gar to laun­dry loads is a won­der­ful idea, but for this par­tic­u­lar in­stance you need to use straight vine­gar and tea tree oil and soak for at least two hours be­fore laun­der­ing.

QUES­TION: What is the eas­i­est and fastest way to cut an ap­ple with­out a corer? Elsie (Emerson)

AN­SWER: In my opin­ion, the eas­i­est way to cut an ap­ple is to stand it on the cut­ting board. Cut half inch from the center on all four sides of the ap­ple around the core. Al­low the sides to fall to the cut­ting board.

QUES­TION: How can I avoid get­ting freezer burn on the meat that I buy? Daniela (Foxwar­ren)

AN­SWER: All food items will even­tu­ally find them­selves with freezer burn, which is thou­sands and thou­sands of wa­ter mol­e­cules that have formed into ice crys­tals. There is a limit to how long food can be stored in the freezer. Here are a few easy steps that you can take to re­duce freezer burn. Don’t over­crowd the freezer; make sure that all meat has enough room. Do­ing this helps the freezer tem­per­a­ture stay con­stant, which re­duces freezer burn. All foods should be pack­aged cor­rectly; squeeze out air be­fore pack­ag­ing. Some peo­ple dou­ble bag meats to re­duce freezer burn. Freeze smaller por­tions and do not freeze foods when they are hot. Al­low them to cool be­fore freez­ing. Cor­rect freezer tem­per­a­ture should be set at -18C.

QUES­TION: My grand­son had gum stuck in his hair and not know­ing what to do I took a scis­sor and gave him a hair­cut! When his mother re­turned to pick him up she was mad at me for cut­ting his hair. She took him for a pro­fes­sional hair­cut and now he’s got very short hair, which doesn’t work well with such cold air. Is there any­thing I could have done to avoid the hair­cut? Pam, Winnipeg

AN­SWER: If this ever hap­pens again sim­ply take a blob of peanut but­ter and run it through his hair. Gen­tly slide the gum along his ends un­til it’s out. If peanut al­ler­gies are a con­cern, use WD-40 or cook­ing oil in­stead. Fab­u­lous Tips of the Week • Re­duce heat­ing costs in your home by 10% and clean less with this sim­ple tip. Change your fur­nace fil­ter monthly so that your fur­nace does not need to work as hard and less dust floats through the air.

• As you get ready to en­joy the fire­place in your home, re­mem­ber not to burn col­ored fly­ers or mag­a­zines. The fumes from col­ored pa­pers may be harm­ful to breathe.

I en­joy your ques­tions and tips, keep them com­ing. Missed a col­umn? Can’t re­mem­ber a so­lu­tion? Need a speaker for an up­com­ing event? Check out my brand new videos/blog/web­site: reena. ca!

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