Dayton Daily News

Helping you save money in 2019

- Heloise Gregory Ramey

Dear Readers: Sometimes by just looking around your house, you can find ways to reduce your bills by taking some basic, simple and practical steps. Try these:

■ Turn off the lights or use timers or dimmers when you leave the room or your home.

■ Use energy-efficient light bulbs and replace them one by one so the cost won’t dent your budget.

■ Run the dishwasher only when it is full and airdry instead of using the drying cycle. If it’s not full, then add seldom-used items for a cleaning.

■ Reuse and repurpose kitchen items. Save heavyduty to-go food containers and use for storing leftovers. Plastic bread bags will hold food scraps, and gallon juice jugs are good for watering plants. — Heloise

Hostess gifts

Dear Heloise: Igoto many parties and like to bring a hostess gift, but I need some new ideas on what to bring. — Kelly in Colorado

Dear Kelly: It is customary to bring a hostess gift, and because you know your friends, you probably will know what to bring, like flowers or plants. Wine or liquor and gourmet cookies or candy are good ideas. Here are a few more suggestion­s: scented candles, aromatic potpourris, exotic coffees, teas with mugs or pretty hand towels. — Heloise

How to saute food

Dear Readers: Sauteing is a popular cooking technique in which food is cooked quickly in a skillet with oil or fat. Here are hints to get good results:

■ For crisp results, heat the oil completely before you add the ingredient­s.

■ For best browning, salt the food after it’s been sauteed, because salt prevents browning.

■ For sauteing meat, sprinkle a bit of sugar over it before putting into the pan, because the meat will brown more and taste better. The sugar caramelize­s as it heats. — Heloise

Silverfish invasion?

Dear Readers: When you notice these wingless insects invading your home, there is a reason. They are coming in to eat and to congregate in damp, warm spots like a basement. They come into your home through cracks in the walls or floors or along pipes. Check these areas and seal them from the silverfish. Here’s what else you can do to help with this problem: Silverfish will chow down on anything that is high in starch, protein or sugar, like cereals and flour. They will eat wallpaper, magazines and books, and they will consume starched clothing. So toss out piles of magazines, and keep your basement, and other damp areas of your home, dry. If your residence is clean, they will not be tempted to drop in for a visit. — Heloise

Pretty centerpiec­es

Dear Readers: Want to make fun, pretty centerpiec­es for all of your spring gatherings? When you shop at the supermarke­t, pick up extra fruit on sale and fresh flowers. If you have flowers or greenery growing in your yard, use them. Choose any of your lovely glass vases or bowls of any size or shape. Cut fresh fruit, like apples, oranges, limes or lemons, into wedges and put in the bottom. Pour in water and then stick in the fresh flowers. The fruits hold and stabilize the flower stems, too. — Heloise

Stale bread

Dear Readers: If you have bread that has gotten old or stale, don’t toss it out. Instead, make a delicious dessert treat. Dunk bread slices into sweetened condensed milk and then roll in flaked coconut. Lay slices on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until the bread is hot and the coconut is brown. — Heloise

At the end of a therapy session, a mom told me she had to rush home because “we have lots of homework tonight,” as she glanced at her 11-yearold daughter. The mom then detailed a variety of projects and tests that she had to complete with her daughter in the next few days.

I thought it was odd that mom referred to homework as something that “we have” to do. Should you be helping your kids with their homework?

Despite what you assume to be common sense, it appears that parental involvemen­t in your child’s academic life, with only a very few exceptions, has little or no effect on your student’s achievemen­t.

Sociologis­ts Keith Robinson and Angel Harris studied three decades of research, examining 63 different forms of parental engagement. They looked at factors such as volunteeri­ng in school,

 ??  ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States