Helpful household hints

Driest mittens

I put plastic gloves over my children’s mittens when they go out to play in the snow. This way, the mittens stay dry longer and their hands don’t get so cold.

Recycle those plastic bags

Put books to return to the library in a plastic grocery bag so if the books get dropped, they won’t be damaged.

Instead of buying boxes of bags to pack my lunch, I just take the store plastic bags and cut them to size, use clear tape, fold over the excess and then I have my bag. They can be used several times and also are easy to wash and drip dry.

Use grocery plastic bags to line small wastebaskets for bathrooms and bedrooms. When they are full, discard the whole works—bag and all.

Easy hold for little ones

If your little one has a hard time holding a glass or cup, wrap a couple of rubber bands around it. Their hands hold on to the bands and are not nearly as easy to slip off.

Burglar proof sliding doors

Someone recently tried to break in to our home through the sliding glass door to the patio but couldn’t do it because my son had taken a 1-inch dowel the width of the door—minus 1 inch—and dropped it in the track. The door will only move that one inch unless the dowel is removed. Sure saved us.

Gunky drain cleaner

My kitchen drain gets really slow after a while and I didn’t know why. Then a friend told me to take 1/2 cup of baking soda down the drain and then pour one full cup of vinegar over the top of the soda. It fizzled and bubbled for a while and then she ran the hot water down the drain for a good 3 minutes to flush out all the junk. It works great now and I didn’t have to call a plumber. This method costs less than a dollar and it works.

Magic hot pack

All you need is a damp terry cloth hand towel that you fold over in the microwave and heat for no more than 2 minutes. Be sure to check for heat before you put it on your skin. I usually wrap my hot towel in a plain cotton dishtowel before putting it on my skin. This is a moist heat pack for sore muscles and it does work, just don’t overheat the damp towel.

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.