Helpful household hints

Recycle that potting soil

A reader says that she recycles the potting soil in the fall of the year when she repots the houseplants. She says, “Instead of throwing it away, we put it around bare spots, in holes and around trees and then sprinkle on grass seed come spring. The potting soil is quite fertile and it’s a shame to waste it.

Barbecue brush danger

Most folks who use barbecue grills use wire brushes to clean off the crud. Be sure to check the grates so there are no little pieces of wire hanging up. The lady who wrote said that a young man was eating a piece of meat and got a piece of wire stuck in his throat. It was stuck to a piece of the meat and he ended up in the emergency room. So be sure to inspect those grates, top and bottom after cleaning.

Package addressing hint

A subscriber writes that a friend of hers has a good way to make sure the packages get where they are supposed to go. She puts the addresses on the package with a large black marker and then puts pieces of clear wide tape over the address and a few inches beyond. This way, the address stays legible even if the package gets wet.

Bathroom silver polish

If you discover that your silver has tarnished, looks like it has black measles and you live 100 miles from the nearest big town where a store would carry sliver polish. Do not despair—just go into the bathroom and grab the toothpaste. Use a damp paper towel to rub the toothpaste all over the silver, especially where there are any grooves, scrub it in good and then wash the toothpaste off in a sink of warm soapy water. The shine will surprise you.

Recycle a vinegar jug

Take an empty gallon vinegar jug, cut at the first ring and you have a large funnel with a handle. The bottom can be used as a small wastebasket, a toy holder of little pieces, or cut it off at the bottom ring and you have a water catcher for a houseplant.

Cleaning shower walls

A reader wrote that her family had just purchased a new to them home and are trying to get it ready for the holidays.  One of the problems was a lot of hard water deposits on the shower walls. They tried all sorts of cleaners with no success then a friend told her to get some really fine steel wool at the hardware store and rub the walls down with that. She says it worked great. The water deposits came off and the shower walls were not scratched at all.

If you have hints or ideas to share, send them to PennyWise, Box 518, Kadoka, SD 57543; or email them to [email protected]. If you send me your name and address, I’ll send you a free copy of the PennyWise Newsletter. Please mention High Plains Journal when you write.