Thursday, September 13, 2012

15 Cool Tips and Tricks I learned from Pinterest

This article is all about housekeeping on a time and money budget.  I hope sharing these tips and tricks with you will inspire you as the ideas originally inspired me.

1.   I'm bummed that this first one doesn't link back to the original blog.  BUT it works well and will probably save money, and help the environment.  Use vinegar in your rinse aid compartment on your dishwasher instead of that blue chemically stuff.

Actually, Let's talk about the dishwasher a little more.  I learned the next four tips,  from Divine Caroline in just this ONE article.  I do wish her tips were a little more verbose. Like which setting to use for each suggestion. I should mention that I rarely use the heated dry cycle to save energy (wouldn't want anything to shrink or melt). Despite the lack of certain specificity, the tips are still generally AWESOME! I'm just not sure I want to steam my salmon in the dishwasher still.

2.  Wash Shoes AND Hats in your DISHWASHER!  Place Hats in the top rack and use a little baking soda. 

3.  Wash Toys (child and pet toys) in your Dishwasher.  She doesn't mention how to contain the toys with little tiny pieces (like Lego's for example), but I tied them tightly into an old pillowcase. 

4.  Wash all those sports pads in your dishwasher.  Alice is fairly new to sparring (Tai Kwon Do), so I haven't had the need to try this one yet.  But I will - Those things can STINK!  What a great idea.

5.  Clean Tools.  Throw in the dustpan, gardening tools, even car parts like your hubcaps (separate from any dishes of course) on the pots and pans setting.  Although, if your dustpan is plastic, you might want to run it through with the toys instead.
6.  To keep up with the laundry, instead of having a "Laundry Day" do one load every morning and then fold during nap time or quiet time until your kids are old enough to take on the chore of at least sorting out the socks and beginning to fold underwear (From the Stressed Mom).  Actually, the whole article is good, if you don't already do any of these 10 things to make your life a little more sane, any of them might be considered genius!

7.  Use bread to keep cakes and muffins moist and fresh overnight while you wait to construct, decorate (or just eat) between baking the night before and enjoying the next day.  From Baked Bree.  (If, like us,  you have a crazy cat who will leave thawing chicken alone but eat pastries and bread that's left out, you may want to try this on a shelf in the cupboard).

8.  I have an old friend that, if asked how good a cook I am, would tell you I can screw up baked potatoes.  Baking was always fun for me, but cooking!  Ugh!  and then Iron Chef became popular and was quickly followed by Top Chef and a host of other competitive reality cooking shows.  I started having a lot of fun experimenting.  While I wouldn't make it a day on Top Chef, I THINK my husband would tell you I'm a better cook now, but I still had trouble with how to best cut up certain things.  Until I discovered, The  This wonderful resource has simple to follow instructions and tips for everything from peeling hazelnuts to cutting a mango and seeding a pomegranate (although I still like Rachel Ray's version of dicing an onion best).

9.  This one, from HandyFamilyman isn't really one tip, but 10 suggestions for your toughest interior cleaning jobs (make them easier and faster).  I mean, who would ever think of using a car product to repel water in your shower and preventing soap scum marks on your shower doors?

10.  While I've said it myself, kids should help with the chores (saving you time AND teaching them life skills), but I've never gotten around to writing an article about which kids can do what at any given age.  This Resource from, The Happy Housewife does just that in a glance (and saves me doing the research).  Visit her site by using the link for the printable version of the chart. 

11.  Excited by a Glamour Magazine article, Jillee from One Good Thing found out that the concoction the magazine touted worked on "everything" didn't REALLY work on everything.  She tweaked their recipe and discovered this miracle cleaner concoction gets out yellow sweat marks AND grease stains from white AND colored clothes.  1 tsp Dawn, 3-4 tsp Hydrogen Peroxide and 2 Tbs baking soda.  Scrub in, let sit (an hour or so) launder as you normally would.  Check out your stain free clothes.

Before                      After
12.  From Cookie and Clare, how to detangle your kids' dolls' hair.   DO NOT USE THE doll's brush or human brushes.  Use a wig brush and spray with laundry softener watered down.  If the hair is really tangled, quite a bit of it might still pull out, but it really does work pretty well!  It also does seem to soften the hair and possibly prevent more tangling for a little while as well  We tested it out on our own Rapunzel doll and will be using it on other dolls (and ponies) shortly.

13.  Detarnish ALL your silver ALL at once with this recipe.  Line your sink with Foil, fill with hot water.  Then add, 1/2 cup of table salt and 1/2 cup baking soda.  dump in all your silver and let soak.  Foil tarnished, silver not!  The pinner gives Susan Branch the credit, but I can't actually find the specific article with this hint in it.

14.  THIS super simple way to make your stainless steal (that isn't really completely stainless) sparkle again.  Use Creme of Tartar, a little bit of water (just enough to make it the powder into a paste) and add a small amount of elbow grease.  Thanks so much "The Real Life Housewife"!

15.  Make your old concentrated juice can lids into garden markers (what a great way to reuse AND they're beautiful too!).  The tutorial with the details is linked here.

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