House­hold tips: One thing leads to an­other

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

ONIONS: The next time you cut up an onion, hold an un­lit wooden match be­tween your teeth to re­duce tear­ing.

VEG­ETA­BLES: Cook green veg­eta­bles in an un­cov­ered pot for four to five min­utes in salted wa­ter. Drain veg­eta­bles such as as­para­gus, beans, Brus­sels sprouts and spinach and then im­me­di­ately im­merse them in cold wa­ter. This ex­tra step locks in colour and flavour.

GREENS: Bury a hand­ful of nails around trees with yel­low leaves. Wa­ter reg­u­larly. The plant is said to ex­tract the iron it needs from the nails caus­ing the leaves to green up.

WA­TER: Be­fore cook­ing, smear the in­side edge of the pot with oil to pre­vent wa­ter from boil­ing over the rim.

OIL: To cure a squeaky hinge, cut a cir­cle the size of a washer out of felt and soak it with oil. Re­move the hinge pin, put the washer on it and rein­sert pin.

WASHER: Af­ter pur­chas­ing new tow­els, wash them sep­a­rately four to five times be­fore adding them to other loads be­cause resid­ual dyes may ruin clothes. Tip: Do not use fab­ric soft­ener when dry­ing tow­els; it makes them less ab­sorbent. Also, for fluffier tow­els, do not dry them com­pletely af­ter wash- ing.

TOW­ELS: Ever won­der why your tow­els have small white marks on them? Bleach spots on bath tow­els and wash­cloths may be caused by whiten­ing agents in tooth­pastes, creams and soaps. Ex­tra Tip: If you have a pull on a towel, cut it off rather then rip­ping it thus ru­in­ing the tex­tile.

TEX­TILES: Pullover bibs for ba­bies can be made by cut­ting the sleeves and back off of old sweat­shirts (zig zag the edges).

BA­BIES: Use baby wipes to re­move car­pet stains. Suc­cess has been re­ported on spills such as blood, ketchup and mo­tor oil.

KETCHUP: To pol­ish cop­per and re­ally make it shine, rub ketchup on it. Let stand for 10 min­utes. Rinse un­der hot wa­ter.

RINS­ING: Clean your wash­ing ma­chine by rins­ing hoses and un­clog­ging soap scum. Pour one cup vine­gar into an empty wash­ing ma­chine and run the reg­u­lar cy­cle.

CLEAN­ING: To clean spills in the mi­crowave oven, cover the spill with a damp wash­cloth and turn the mi­crowave on high for 10-12 sec­onds. The mess will wipe away eas­ily.

MI­CROWAVE: Use the last bit of lip­stick in a tube and mix it to­gether with petroleum jelly to make lip gloss. Heat the so­lu­tion in the mi­crowave for one minute and stir. Let har­den be­fore us­ing.

HEAT: When you find pho­to­graphs stuck to­gether, heat them on a low set­ting with a hair dryer.

STUCK TO­GETHER: Keep your fin­gers from be­com­ing stuck to­gether when glu­ing or paint­ing by slip­ping small plas­tic bags over your hands (if you need to get the phone you can eas­ily re­move the bags).

I en­joy your ques­tions and tips. Keep them com­ing!

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