Table of Contents
Chapter 1: The Kitchen
Chapter 2: The Bathroom
Chapter 3: The Bedroom
Chapter 4: Closets and General Storage
Chapter 5: Furniture, Walls, Floors, Windows, Drapes, and Doors
Chapter 5: Clothing and Laundry
Chapter 6: Garage and Yard
Chapter 7: Household Repair and Maintenance
Chapter 8: Saving Energy, Money, and Lives
Chapter 9: Your Automobile
Chapter 10: Hiring Help
Excerpt–10 Tips from Helpful Household Hints
The microwave is one of the greatest conveniences available in modern kitchens, but sometimes it’s hard to tell if your dishes are microwave safe. The best way to test a dish is to put it in the microwave with a measuring cup filled with water. Heat for one minute at the highest power. Check the temperature of each; if the dish is cold and the water hot, then the dish is microwave safe.
Old Enough to Date
It can become very confusing to try and figure out which of your leftovers are oldest and should be eaten first. This problem can be remedied by a small pieces of paper with the date that you originally cooked the dish written on it. Simply tape the piece of paper to the container in which you’re storing the leftover, and voila!
Everyone seems to think that carving a turkey is difficult, but it’s actually quite simple, as long as you follow these directions. To remove white meat, cut directly downwards until you hit bone, using the breastbone as a guide. Then turn the knife horizontal and cut outwards. Repeat for the other side. You will then have two succulent turkey breasts, which can easily be sliced on a cutting board. To remove legs and wings, pull the appendage away from the body and hunt for the joint with the tip of your knife. When you finally find the cartilage, your knife should be able to cut through it without any problem whatsoever.
Shoe Boxes Aren’t Just for Shoes
Remember how you used to keep your favorite toys in shoe boxes when you were a kid? Well, why did you ever stop using shoe boxes for storage? They’re sturdy and they come in practical sizes, perfect for holding hairbrushes, combs, spray cans, makeup, toothbrushes and toothpaste. Each member of your family can have his or her own box, and there will never again be any confusion about which item belongs to whom. And as long as you don’t lose the lid, then the shoe box can be tucked away almost anywhere in the bathroom without dirtying or damaging the things inside.
The mirror in your bathroom always fogs up after you’ve had a shower, but you can easily solve this by pointing your blow dryer at it and letting the hot air evaporate the moisture. An even better way is to simply drape a towel across it while you bathe. That way, you don’t waste any electricity, and the towel is within easy reach.
Hair has a nasty tendency to accumulate around bathroom sinks. Most products have difficulty picking up hair, as static electricity makes it cling to the porcelain. The solution is very simple: Moisten a paper towel and scrub the porcelain. The water will destroy the static charge, and the paper towel will be able to pick up all the hair. Be certain never to flush the towel down the toilet, as it will clog your plumbing.
Most people have their suitcases tucked away in the backs of their closets, just wasting precious storage space. They don’t want to put their expensive luggage in the garage, basement, or attic, for fear that some rodents might start nibbling on it. You might as well put your suitcase to good use then! Store things inside of it that you don’t use everyday. For example, during the summer, why not keep your winter clothes inside it? That way both your suitcases and the clothes within them will be kept perfectly safe.
No More Oil
Even a well organized garage seems to be plagued by the problem of oil that has dripped from your car onto the ground. The magic ingredient to make such stains disappear is cat box litter. Pour the litter very liberally over the stain, and allow it to sit for a few hours. Then scrub it in with all your might, using a brick or some other heavy and coarse object. Finally, brush away the litter, and voila! Don’t forget to get your car looked at, because the leak might be serious.
If the metal screen in your window gets a small tear in it, then you don’t have to throw it out. Simply glue the torn area back together with a strong bonding epoxy, which can be found at any hardware store. Always read the directions when using glues such as this. To clean your screen (a chore which should be done at least once a year), hose it down and scrub it with a small piece of shag carpeting.
You always seem to forget where you put the flashlight when there’s a power outage. A good way to help you find useful items such as these in the dark is to wrap them in fluorescent tape. This can also be helpful on light switches and light cords if you have to get up suddenly in the middle of the night. Also, if a fuse ever blows, have a spare one already attached to the side of the box with tape, so that you’ll always be able to turn the lights back on in a jiffy.
© 1996 Santa Monica Press LLC
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