SparkPeople Around The House Secrets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets-category.asp?category=around-the-house Learn some of the secrets of success for Around The House from SparkPeople members. SparkPeople Around The House Secrets http://www.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/nav_logo_v3.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets-category.asp?category=around-the-house dryer sheets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42739_dryer_sheets put a dryer sheet in a pan that has burnt food add some water and let soak over night. Fri, 15 Aug 2014 22:27:00 EST Binder clips to hold a sheer curtain behind a drape http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42727_binder_clips_to_hold_a_sheer_curtain_behind_a_drape I have drapes on my windows and sheer curtains. Rather than install a second set of screws to hold the curtains, I used binder clips on the already installed drapery holders. The smaller curtain rod easily slides through the binder clips. Tue, 12 Aug 2014 09:02:00 EST Closets by Chriss http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42692_closets_by_chriss I am writing a book Closets by Chriss. I spend a lot of time, thinking about closets, especially in rental units like apartments.I have a schedule of closet maintenance, products and put the time in to maintain what is in my closets. Mon, 28 Jul 2014 12:05:00 EST Alligator clips for instant baby bibs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42596_alligator_clips_for_instant_baby_bibs Alligator clips (like electricians use) can be kept packed in a diaper bag to provide instant bibs for your baby. Just clip a paper napkin or a wash cloth to their clothing. <br>You can also thread cord thru the ends to create a set that looks like something your dentist uses.<br> Tue, 17 Jun 2014 07:37:00 EST washing smokey walls http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42576_washing_smokey_walls use vinegar and ammonion mix, it comes right off. no more smokey walls before i did my painting. Mon, 9 Jun 2014 10:19:00 EST Keep a small rag on floor in kitchen ready to clean up spills http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42563_keep_a_small_rag_on_floor_in_kitchen_ready_to_clean_up_spills I keep a small rag pushed out of sight on the kitchen floor. If a spill occurs, I can easily use my foot to snag it and clean up the spill while continuing to multitask. Saves time, no bending, no washing hands after. Sat, 7 Jun 2014 09:27:00 EST Easy microwave cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42543_easy_microwave_cleaning To clean your microwave fast, wet a washcloth and place in microwave, turn on for 1 minute and wipe it down. <em>30</em> Sat, 31 May 2014 12:49:00 EST Use your cleaning vinegar twice http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42520_use_your_cleaning_vinegar_twice My coffee maker needs to be descaled and it takes a large amount of white vinegar. I don't trash the vinegar, I re-use it first. A cup can be tossed into the dish washer as an additive. You can heat the vinegar and then soak a shower head in it to remove scaling. You can wrap a rag or paper towel around your bathroom faucets and pour on hot vinegar. Let it soak and the shine will come back. Thu, 22 May 2014 08:06:00 EST Roll, don't fold fitted sheets -- also visually easy to find http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42501_roll_dont_fold_fitted_sheets_visually_easy_to_find_aslo I roll my fitted sheets rather than try to fold them neatly into a rectangle. That way when I need a flat sheet, I can see which ones are fitted easily and not unfold something I don't want to use. Tue, 20 May 2014 08:54:00 EST Make your own mother yogurt starter http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42387_make_your_own_mother_yogurt_starter If you make your own yogurt, you probably spend a pretty piece of change on a yogurt starter that has to be replenished pretty quickly. Well you can make your own yogurt starter that will last at least a year from chili pepper stems. Wed, 9 Apr 2014 21:49:00 EST Freshly ground peanuts won't separate for months. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42386_freshly_ground_peanuts_wont_separate_for_months I noticed when I bought freshly ground peanut butter at Whole Foods that it didn't separate at all. So I finally let a small bit sit and see how long it takes to separate -- 4 months. The moral of the story is to buy it freshly ground when possible. I've found cheaper places than Whole Foods. <em>9</em> Wed, 9 Apr 2014 21:47:00 EST no junk http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42341_no_junk no junk around the house. only have things that have 1 or 2 grams of sugar in them ( like atkins treats) that way no temptations to eat cookies, cake, brownies. they aren't here. Fri, 28 Mar 2014 11:23:00 EST Get clean and Spark Points http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42271_get_clean_and_spark_points Did you know you can track "Heavy cleaning" and "housework" in your fitness tracker? So you can get motivated to clean the house knowing you'll get extra fitness minutes! Sat, 1 Mar 2014 23:02:00 EST Do the little things when you think of them http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42254_do_the_little_things_when_you_think_of_them As you go through the day and think of things you want to do later, or tomorrow, stop and do something that is part of the task so it is done and you don't have to remember it. Example: You need to take something to work tomorrow. Put it by your car keys so it is close when you pick up your keys tomorrow morning. Or you need to call someone tomorrow. Put their name and phone number on a piece of paper and put that near your keys. Tue, 25 Feb 2014 14:55:00 EST Changing Habits http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42224_changing_habits There are some things I love doing, others I'd rather not. Sun, 16 Feb 2014 20:24:00 EST Clean something to music http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42221_clean_something_to_music Find something in your house that you don't clean on a regular basis, like lampshades, cabinet tops or doors, washing walls, etc., and put on some music and clean and sing your way to remove your stress. Sing loud and clean hard, and you'll be stress free and will have accomplished something good at the same time. Sat, 15 Feb 2014 09:18:00 EST Move around as you are Cooking http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42141_move_around_as_you_are_cooking Today while fixing lunch for my kids, I danced around the kitchen. My son asked what I was doing and I told him I was exercising during the time I was making the lunch. When the timer goes off I would have been continuously moving around for 5 to 10 minutes or more and not even realize cause I was having fun doing all types of move, like air punching, etc. And it's fun. <br><br> <em>321</em> Fri, 24 Jan 2014 15:45:00 EST TV remote http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42088_tv_remote When I find a very interesting show I put the remote next to the TV. I need to get up to change and cannot channell surf. I do my exercises in the commercials. Sun, 12 Jan 2014 21:01:00 EST Keep it Moving http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=42042_keep_it_moving I dance while doing dishes and cooking. The music keeps me motivated. I prefer dancing to salsa or reggae music. In fact whenever I have to be in the house I dance around. <em>236</em> <br> Tue, 31 Dec 2013 23:36:00 EST Kick up daily activity http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41975_kick_up_daily_activity Whenever I go up or down my flight of stairs, I stop at landing & step up for 25 steps. It has helped me keep off winter weight I tend to put on. Tue, 3 Dec 2013 17:39:00 EST Dance! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41950_dance When cooking, or cleaning, or even playing with the kids put on some of favorite music and dance. I even dance round the aisles in the supermarket! Its fun and gets you moving! Thu, 21 Nov 2013 06:34:00 EST Getting in Extra Workouts http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41947_getting_in_extra_workouts My favorite way to work in more movement is to get up and walk around throughout the day. That adds more steps to my total for the dayt. Mon, 18 Nov 2013 18:08:00 EST Standing desk? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41775_standing_desk OK, this is one I haven't tried yet, but I find it intriguing. I'm thinking of getting a standing desk, so I stand at my computer instead of sitting. I worry that my feet would get too tired but I think it would be good for me not to be sitting so much. Thu, 3 Oct 2013 13:27:00 EST How to get off the couch http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41763_how_to_get_off_the_couch Turn off the tv! Now, how simple is that. I'm gettin more excersise. My house is cleaner. I'm reading again. It's a win, win. <br> Tue, 1 Oct 2013 07:41:00 EST Dance while Cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41738_dance_while_cleaning When I clean the house, I turn on my favorite music and get some dancing moves in and also a little singing. Great way to get some exercise in. Mon, 23 Sep 2013 22:45:00 EST Your smaller plate for portion control can look like a banquet ! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41729_your_smaller_plate_for_portion_control_can_look_like_a_banquet_ Maybe you've made the move to using smaller sized plates and bowls to help cut portion size, but you don't like the look of a smaller-sized plate in front of you. Make your place setting appear more glamorous as well as LARGER, by using full size plate as a charger, or a salad plate under your smaller bowls. Thu, 19 Sep 2013 19:19:00 EST Go with the Flow, of Water that Is http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41582_go_with_the_flow_of_water_that_is I was sitting too much. I've tied moving for 2 minutes to each time I have to refill my water glass. I put 8 Ws down a note pad. Each time I finish a glass, I cross off a W and next to it I put the activity I do before I sit down with the next glass. That activity must last at least 2 minutes. If it lasts more than 2 minutes, I record that extra time, also. I enter all of that in my fitness tracker favorites as "Home Circuit" and give it calorie burn = to walking or strength training. Tue, 13 Aug 2013 17:15:00 EST Hanaging out laundry. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41404_hanaging_out_laundry On these sunny summer days, I take the extra time to hang all of my laundry on the lines outside instead of throwing it all in the dryer. The few extra steps saves some money and adds a little more movement throughout the day, (and the sheets smell fantastic) Fri, 5 Jul 2013 12:26:00 EST Making Your Own Laundry Detergent http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41339_making_your_own_laundry_detergent I make my own laundry detergent. The site says around $28 a year. Honestly, I made mine before Thanksgiving and haven't even used 2 bottles worth, so I think it could last more than a year. Also, if you're a coupon user, you can stock up on your supplies by using your coupons. Here's the link http://www.howdoesshe.com/cheaper-and-bett<BR>er-diy-laundry-detergent/ Everything you need is there. The bucket can be bought at Wal-Mart for super cheap and you can get a grater for this at Dollar Tree... Wed, 26 Jun 2013 05:12:00 EST Vinegar and Baking Soda Cleans Everything http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41338_vinegar_and_baking_soda_cleans_everything I used vinegar and baking soda to clean just about everything in my house. I keep the vinegar in a spray bottle to use as needed. It's cheap, healthy, and leaves my house smelling clean. Wed, 26 Jun 2013 05:06:00 EST HOMEMADE MOSQUITO TRAP: http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41317_homemade_mosquito_trap 1 cup of water <br>1/4 cup of brown sugar<br>1 gram of yeast<br>1 2-liter bottle HOW:<br>1. Cut the plastic bottle in half. 2. Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle.<br>3. Add the yeast. No need to mix. <br>4. Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle, taping them together if desired.<br>5. Wrap the bottle with something black, leaving the top uncovered, and place it outside in an area away from your normal gat... Wed, 19 Jun 2013 20:18:00 EST Laundry workout http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41258_laundry_workout Busy working mom finding steps and sweat where I can! I try to make up "games" to challenge myself and to change things up.<br><br>I usually use our dining room table as a clothes folding station and all bedrooms are upstairs. So I fold 10 pieces of laundry at a time, whatever my hand touches first (socks don't count). After folding 10 pieces, I put each persons clothes away separately. For every 10 pieces I may do the stairs 5 times! <em>198</em> Sun, 9 Jun 2013 22:38:00 EST Take the stairs down http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41244_take_the_stairs_down We live on the 21st floor of a high-rise - the elevator down takes 40 seconds; taking the stairs is only 2 minutes and sneaks in a few more steps - better than standing still :) Fri, 7 Jun 2013 13:24:00 EST Sparkling electric stoves http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41166_sparkling_electric_stoves After moving in my electric stove was nasty..it was caky and really grimy. <br> I have found my favorite way to clean my stove... you have to keep up on it and wipe and wash it down after every use..<br>Wash down with dawn dish soap and sprinkle baking soda on it... use a scraper or a blade to get the really bad crusty stuff off... I use a spray bottle of ammonia, vinegar and water (even parts and its what I use as a glass cleaner) and then I will spray that down... wipe down and clean. Fri, 31 May 2013 09:07:00 EST Clean blinds! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41119_clean_blinds I have found I LOVVVE using dryer sheets to clean my blinds... its like swifter.. the dust sticks to the dryer sheets and saves time and smells good too! Tue, 21 May 2013 09:56:00 EST FAVORITE CLEANER FOR ELECTRONICS AND GLASS http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41116_favorite_cleaner_for_electronics_and_glass I have found my ultimate way to clean glass...<br>I use a squeegee and coffee filters ( as paper towels) they are stronger and they last longer!<br>I use plain vinegar half and half in a spray bottle..<br>For my electronics. computers, I will use a fine mist spray bottle spray on a cloth and I will use half rubbing alcohol (first aid dept) and half water.. Tue, 21 May 2013 08:42:00 EST CAMP FIRE STARTERS! Dryer Lint and paper toilet holders http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41111_camp_fire_starters_dryer_lint_and_paper_toilet_holders LOVE camp fires and home fires and smores.. We have started recycling toilet paper rolls and the lint from the dryer...<br>We stuff the lint into the cardboard paper towel holder and then put it in a grocery plastic bag for storage.. when it gets full we store it with the firewood and our camping supplies.. We always stuff at least two in the fire with our kindling to start fires.. Its like steel wool, flamable and it works great, plus who would have known to recycle dryer lint for flint sta... Mon, 20 May 2013 16:43:00 EST Getting a groove on. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41055_getting_a_groove_on All those chores around the house are a drag. I crank the music and dance while I work and when my niece is visiting, she dances alongside. It burns calories and makes household chores a whole lot more fun! Tue, 14 May 2013 22:41:00 EST fridge access vs. craft access http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=41016_fridge_access_vs_craft_access I love crafting and eating but the only thing that is super easy to get to is my fridge. I am going to make my crafting stuff as easy to get to as the food in my fridge. If it was realistic I would store the crafting stuff in there instead of the food. <em>246</em> Sun, 5 May 2013 12:17:00 EST Getting rid of ants with Bounce http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40974_getting_rid_of_ants_with_bounce Bounce Fabric Sheets have a smell that repels ants. I always keep a packet in in my suitcase for vacations and lay it in cupboards, and drawers in any kitchen vacation time share unit that we stay in. They run away from it! Thu, 25 Apr 2013 15:00:00 EST TV lifting http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40970_tv_lifting I have my moderately heavy weights under the coffee table in the TV room so to feel less guilty about wasting time watching TV, I work my upper body while sitting on the couch. If I have more energy, I stand up and do shoulders or squats - all the while not missing a beat on my favorite show! Wed, 24 Apr 2013 14:51:00 EST KILLING ANTS ~!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40965_killing_ants_ Around this time we get ants galore, I have no idea where they come from... This is a proof method and in a few days it will work 1 cup sugar<br>3 tablespoons mules Borax<br>3 cups warm water<br><br>Mix the sugar and Boric Acic well in a mason jar. Store in jar.<br><br>Add the warm water slowly, mixing all the while so it won't be too lumpy.<br><br> Put cotton into the jar and saturate the cotton to the top. I keep old milk lids and then put the cotton ball in the milk lid. Lay down where yo... Wed, 24 Apr 2013 09:53:00 EST Killing 2 birds with one stone! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40932_killing_2_birds_with_one_stone <br>Combining house work and yard work with exercise can put a better light on exercising an being activity. Tue, 16 Apr 2013 12:47:00 EST Help I dried laundry with a tube of blistex http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40886_help_i_dried_laundry_with_a_tube_of_blistex It has melted and ran all over my clothes! Mon, 8 Apr 2013 16:33:00 EST Cleaning hairbrushes, combs, flip flops and baseball caps http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40842_cleaning_hairbrushes_combs_flip_flops_and_baseball_caps I put hairbrushes, flip flops and baseball caps in the dishwasher...run the cycle....and VOILA'....CLEAN! While I do something else. (NOT while I run dishes!) Fri, 29 Mar 2013 13:41:00 EST Making chores your exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40833_making_chores_your_exercise On days I can't fit a "workout" in, I use my daily chores around the house as my exercise, such as extra trips up and down the stairs putting things away, squats when folding clothes, you get the picture. Instead of trying to be efficient, and carrying multiple items to put away, make a separate trip for each item. Walking out to our mailbox or feeding our outside animals helps get some steps in as well. Just use whatever you have to get even a little exercise in your day. It all helps. Thu, 28 Mar 2013 10:37:00 EST Ways to move extra while spring cleaning... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40823_ways_to_move_extra_while_spring_cleaning I've started my spring cleaning today. So I decided, to get in a little extra movement on top of cleaning my butt off, instead of letting the trash bags and recycling pile up and take one big trip to the dumpster, every time, I fill up a bag, I take it down right then. And I live on the second floor too, so lots of extra movement! <em>198</em> Tue, 26 Mar 2013 17:51:00 EST Clean less inefficiently and move more. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40720_clean_less_inefficiently_and_move_more When straightening up the house, work on one room at a time and put each item that belongs in that room In its rightful place. As you find things that don't belong in that room, put them together in one spot. Then when you have finished straightening that room, empty your pile of items that belong elsewhere one item at a time. You'll walk take a lot more steps walking back and forth to other rooms. When all the items have been put up, move to the next room and straighten it the same way. Sat, 9 Mar 2013 17:49:00 EST Making laundry into exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40719_making_laundry_into_exercise When you're doing laundry you can increase the number of steps you take by taking one item at a time out of the hamper and putting it in the washer. That's a lot of walking back and forth especially if you move the hamper further away from the washer. If you are unbundling socks or checking pockets and haven't finished by the time you reach the washer, walk around in front of it until you're ready to put the item in the machine. Sat, 9 Mar 2013 17:40:00 EST Do your cleaning for the weekend on Thursday night http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40693_do_your_cleaning_for_the_weekend_on_thursday_night I used to dread weekends because it was the time I did most of my cleaning but it was also the time friends and family would drop over. Now, I take about two hours on Thursday night and clean the bathroom, do some general housework and do my laundry. Then I feel like I have more free time on the weekends to get out and enjoy life. This simple change made a huge difference in my life Tue, 5 Mar 2013 14:52:00 EST Useless products http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40675_useless_products Every so often, I like to go around the house and see what I haven't used in what seems like ages, I either donate or if possible sell on-line. I had an extra slow cooker in its original box, sold it. Had 2 extra sets of cultery, sold one with extra dishes that I don't need, and several other items I am trying to sell. Gives me extra room in the house, plus get a few extra bucks to pay down the mortgage or put towards RRSPs. Sat, 2 Mar 2013 09:38:00 EST One room per day http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40620_one_room_per_day If tacke in the whole house the same day seems overwhelming choose one day of the week for each room, bathrooms-Mon, living room-Tue.ctr... you see it's much easier this way, everything is quite nice all the time. <em>211</em> Sat, 23 Feb 2013 13:14:00 EST making unpacking after a move a breeze http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40488_making_unpacking_after_a_move_a_breeze when packing to move, take an 8x11 sheet of paper, or smaller if the box is smaller, and write on what is in the box, then tape the paper to the top of the box when you are sealing it. alternative is to use clear plastic containers whenever possible so that you can see what is in the container. try to pack like things together, ie. linens, kitchen etc. as well, use socks, scarves, shirts etc. to wrap around fragile items. happy housewarming. Tue, 5 Feb 2013 17:06:00 EST Steam away horrible carpet stains with no chemicals http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40410_steam_away_horrible_carpet_stains_with_no_chemicals If you have a nasty stain (food, pets, etc) spray liberally with a misting bottle full of water. Place a white washcloth on top, then iron it with an electric steam iron until it doesn't make fizzy noises anymore.<br>Repeat until the stain is lifted.<br><br>Can also use 1:4 mix of carpet cleaner/water for a better smell. Thu, 24 Jan 2013 13:59:00 EST Chore Chart http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40349_chore_chart I created a chore chart for my family and now everyone fights over who gets to do what chore. It makes it so easy to keep track of it and the kids can earn extra video game time, a night out, or a fun outing. Wed, 16 Jan 2013 11:44:00 EST Use your childhood habits http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40316_use_your_childhood_habits I'm a "girl" raised in the 1950s and my mother taught me to look around, scan a room and see what needs doing. To this day, I unconsciously do this, notice what is out of place but now, I often semi unconsciously ignore what I see! I'm working on getting back in the habit of deliberately sticking my head up and taking note of my environment and spending 5 minutes to make it better. Sun, 13 Jan 2013 06:51:00 EST sneaky exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40264_sneaky_exercise squats or pelvic exercise whilst washing up <em>30</em> Wed, 9 Jan 2013 10:00:00 EST Take the extra steps! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40238_take_the_extra_steps Instead of making a pile of things that need to go the the other end of the house, walk them to where they go right away - don't wait for the pile to build! Tue, 8 Jan 2013 09:34:00 EST Path of MOST Resistance http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40138_path_of_most_resistance Honestly, everyone has those days when we just don't feel like lifting a finger, much less going to the gym. I've found that on those days, a 10 minute session with my resistance band keeps my metabolism churning and calories burning! Wed, 2 Jan 2013 09:16:00 EST Ants http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40128_ants Ants hate coffee! Dump your gronds on anthills, but get out of the way! Tue, 1 Jan 2013 19:07:00 EST Coffee Grinds at Deordorizer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=40084_coffee_grinds_at_deordorizer Freshly ground coffee is an excellent deodorizer. Try leaving it on a plate in the fridge or any area that smells badly - you will be amazed how it clears out the smell. It is very effective to leave in a car that has had milk spilled in it - believe me _ i know :) <em>211</em> Sun, 23 Dec 2012 22:56:00 EST Cleaning 10 minutes at a time http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39959_cleaning_10_minutes_at_a_time When I find I have tons to do and can't figure out where to start at home, I grab my handy kitchen timer (or use the timer on my cell phone) and clean in each room for 10 minutes. You would be amazed by how much you accomplish! Take a 10 minute (timed!) break after 30 minutes or so and keep going.<br><br>Once you get through all your rooms you will feel like things are under control and you can tackle more intricate projects. Sun, 25 Nov 2012 02:36:00 EST Cleaning pots and pans http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39879_cleaning_pots_and_pans Whether you have oil marks, hard water deposits, or stubborn food...just pour in some vinegar and let set for 5 minutes. Your stains will either disappear or come off with a soft cloth. I just rinse with fresh water and dry right away when done. No scrubbing required!!! <em>302</em> Sun, 4 Nov 2012 23:22:00 EST Cleaning glass in picture frames http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39778_cleaning_glass_in_picture_frames Never use liquid as moisture can seep through, instead use methylated spirits applied to a rag or piece of paper towel which evaporates quickly. <em>104</em> Fri, 19 Oct 2012 06:45:00 EST Vinegar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39745_vinegar A nice replacement for chemicals. Fri, 12 Oct 2012 13:08:00 EST water http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39685_water I carry a water bottle and drink water through out the day Sun, 7 Oct 2012 10:02:00 EST Cleaning hair brushes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39500_cleaning_hair_brushes Why buy a gadget to clean the hair from hairbrushes? I've discovered the perfect tool: a plastic fork! The heavier weight ones work best, and just as well as the metal rake-like devices that sell for about $15. Tue, 11 Sep 2012 01:45:00 EST Removing Ink Stains http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39374_removing_ink_stains If you get ink on clothing, soak the stain in whole milk or 1/2 n1/2 - yes, it needs the fat content - the ink will come out after an hour or so. True story! (I put the milk in a saucer, and drape the stained part in it so that the entire garment does not have to be soaked in milk!) Tue, 21 Aug 2012 22:37:00 EST Cleaning your coffee grinder http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39263_cleaning_your_coffee_grinder Add a handful of uncooked rice to your coffee grinder and grind away. The chopped rice cleans out the stuck coffee grounds, oils and absorbs stale odors. Afterward, throw away the rice and wipe the grinder clean. Fri, 10 Aug 2012 13:15:00 EST Fireplace Cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39262_fireplace_cleaning Before cleaning the ashes from my fireplace, I sprinkle damp coffee grounds over them. The coffee grounds weigh the ashes down and keep dust to a minimum. Fri, 10 Aug 2012 13:08:00 EST Removing onion and garlic smells from cutting board http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39233_removing_onion_and_garlic_smells_from_cutting_board Garlic and onion smells can be removed from your chopping board by rubbing with a cut lemon.<br>Another tip - if you want to reduce the darkness of bruises<br>A cotton ball soaked in white vinegar and applied to a fresh bruise will reduce the darkness of the bruise and help it disappear earlier. Fri, 10 Aug 2012 06:47:00 EST 'Dancing' http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39186_dancing It's a embarrassing pleasure of mine, but when no one else is around, I like to wear headphones, turn up the music, and get lost in Cirque de Soleil's wonderous sounds--and then try to 'dance'. I don't know how to dance, so I just do whatever seems to fit the music. But I love it! It really is a secret pleasure of mine... :) Sat, 4 Aug 2012 13:00:00 EST Sewing tip http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39159_sewing_tip If you loose a button and need to sew it on or if you need to move a button over keep in mind as long as u have a needle you could use dental floss if you don't have any thread it works well and does the job :) <em>41</em> Sun, 29 Jul 2012 19:43:00 EST Sample Perfumes in Magazines http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39120_sample_perfumes_in_magazines After unsealing the perfume sample to smell, I put them in my kitchen and bathroom trash cans. It helps with the order. <em>40</em> Fri, 27 Jul 2012 09:30:00 EST Cleaning aluminium pans http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39098_cleaning_aluminium_pans For aluminium pans that are looking dull, just boil some apple peels in them.<br>This will brighten up the aluminium and make your house smell yummy... <em>224</em> Wed, 25 Jul 2012 06:10:00 EST Fabric Softener Sheets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39039_fabric_softener_sheets I put my fabric softener sheets in a clean diaper wipe box. You can pull them out one by one and it keeps them smelling super fresh. Sun, 15 Jul 2012 12:09:00 EST Cotton http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=39036_cotton The cotton that comes in vitamins or medications is a good thing to save. For example if you run out of cotton balls or never buy them the cotton from the medicines or vitamins is great for removing nail polish when you are doing your fingernails or toenails. It isn't wasted this way. <em>273</em> Sat, 14 Jul 2012 22:43:00 EST Drano No!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38802_drano_no I was told by a plumber that instead of using Drano or other harsh chemicals to pour baking soda down the drain, followed by vinegar, then cover the drain. It is better for the pipes too. Have been doing this for years, works like a charm and is cheap. Fri, 1 Jun 2012 15:46:00 EST Vinegar instead of Febreze http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38673_vinegar_instead_of_febreze In a spray bottle-Mix 2 parts white vinegar with 1 part water. Add 4-5 drops of your favorite essential oil. <br>Believe it or not a light mist of this mix gets rid of odors. Yes at first the vinegar will be strong but soon it disappears leaving only the scent of the oil. Its great on glass, toilet, tile floors. You can lightly mist your rugs and allow to dry. It gets rid of my dogs "doggy" smell. <br>It also gets rid of spiders.<br>You can pour some in your laundry instead of fabric softner.... Wed, 9 May 2012 20:56:00 EST Coffee pot messes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38508_coffee_pot_messes Put the cardboard from a frozen pizza under your coffee pot. It absorbs the little spills and drips from the coffee pot. It also doubles as a place for your spoon if you add creamer! Less cleanup and recycling! Mon, 23 Apr 2012 09:37:00 EST A great vinyl floor cleaner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38504_a_great_vinyl_floor_cleaner I have 2 dogs and the vinyl floor in front of their food dishes would not come clean. The dirt was ground in. <br>I sprayed Scrubbing Bubbles Tub Cleaner on the floor and let it set up for about 10 minutes. The dirt lifted right out of the tiny dimples in the vinyl! Good as new! Sun, 22 Apr 2012 15:55:00 EST de cluttering and Spring Cleaning! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38402_de_cluttering_and_spring_cleaning One day, I got so frustrated about the clutter in the house(there isnt too much but it was getting out of hand!) That I remembered what My Mom said when company was coming over. We went thought the house cleaning everything. <br><br>Well ,I decided that day, I was "company" , I started cleaning ,de cluttering ,polishing and dusting. In about 1 1/2 hrs, my house looked I was ready to entertain. So I relaxed and enjoyed it . <br>Moral - u deserve the best,sometimes U have to work for it. Fri, 6 Apr 2012 12:00:00 EST Ceiling Fan Cleaner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38318_ceiling_fan_cleaner Use an old pillowcase to clean the ceiling fan blades. Get the pillowcase a little damp and put it over the blade (like a pillow) and pull off all the dust/dirt without it going everywhere! It all stays in the pillowcase :] Mon, 26 Mar 2012 11:32:00 EST dance like nobodys watching to lose weight http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38280_dance_like_nobodys_watching_to_lose_weight I dance like I'm in the movie flash dance to all my fav 80's tunes or techno. Its so fun you dont know your getting a workout. <em>236</em> Wed, 21 Mar 2012 19:00:00 EST One thing accomplished! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=38273_one_thing_accomplished Sometimes I get overwhelmed after getting up getting the kids to school then coming home to housework. So I make it a goal that if I am going to do house work that day, to pick one thing and do that only. Like cleaning the bathroom. Its less overwhelming to tackle one thing then have to do everything. :) Mon, 19 Mar 2012 18:59:00 EST Keep Your Tulips from Drooping http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37985_keep_your_tulips_from_drooping I love love love fresh tulip bouquets this time of year.. however they seem to get droopy soooo fast. To get a little more life out of them, simply drop a penny in water of the vase and they will last much longer. Fri, 17 Feb 2012 11:43:00 EST Got Odors in your house http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37941_got_odors_in_your_house Got odors on your furniture , carpet, or animals. You can get rid of them easy. Mix equal parts of proxide, backing soda, and dawn dish soap in warm water. Sun, 12 Feb 2012 07:47:00 EST Plan your menu around your schedule http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37874_plan_your_menu_around_your_schedule I plan my weekly menu around my schedule to curb the urge to eat out. On days that I know I'll have something else to do during the time that I'm normally cooking (ex. on day's my daughter has dance until 5:30) I plan a slow cooker meal so that I know dinner will be ready when we get home and I'm not tempted to stop somewhere. On the days I know I probably just won't feel like cooking (usually Friday or Saturday) I plan something that can be prepared in under 20 minutes. Tue, 7 Feb 2012 21:42:00 EST Norwax?? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37527_norwax I don't know if I spelled that right or not.. These are the best cleaning investment I have made. All you need is water no harmful chemicals. They clean aweseom too.. It makes cleaning a breeze Fri, 13 Jan 2012 09:35:00 EST sore throat- http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37487_sore_throat have a sore throat ,,works every time. Apple cider vinegar. about and ounce, may burn going dow but it really works and my dr. says it kils strep away on contact. good luck.<br> Wed, 11 Jan 2012 02:19:00 EST "Tervis" Type Straws http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37466_tervis_type_straws I foolishly put my "Tervis" type (rigid) straw in the dishwasher. When I pulled it out it was no longer straight. To fix it (straighten) the straw back, I put 2 metal kabob skewers inside the straw and ran it back through the dishwasher. The skewers held the straw straight when the plastic was heated up. <br><br>Now I need to remember to handwash the straw! <em>52</em> Mon, 9 Jan 2012 10:46:00 EST Sticky stickers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37451_sticky_stickers Use scotch tape to remove the "glue" from clothing from a sticker that went through the wash machine & dryer. It can take awhile to do, but at least the clothes are not totally ruined. Sun, 8 Jan 2012 19:44:00 EST Save elbow grease http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37435_save_elbow_grease Is baked on grime part of the lunch leftovers? Place a dryer sheet in pots and pans, fill with water, leave to soak overnight and simply sponge off the next morning.The antistatic agent on the sheet works to weaken the bond between stuck-on food and pan surfaces. <em>250</em> Sat, 7 Jan 2012 09:31:00 EST Schedule that Task You've Been Putting Off! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37405_schedule_that_task_youve_been_putting_off Schedule an appointment to do a task you've been putting off Thu, 5 Jan 2012 07:44:00 EST Shower Caps-A new use http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=37164_shower_capsa_new_use If you happen to stay in a hotel that provides shower caps, take the unused one home in the package. Use to cover leftovers in the refrigerator. The elastic holds the plastic in place and most of these will fit larger bowls. Sun, 11 Dec 2011 18:59:00 EST Relieving Stress http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36882_relieving_stress When I feel like I want to eat something I shouldn't, I try to clean something. Get that edge off. It works for me but maybe not for everyone. Doing this helps me get organized as well. It don't have to be for very long. Clean a sink in the bathroom, sweep a floor, organize a junk drawer. Something to get your mind off of eating. Tue, 8 Nov 2011 21:35:00 EST Winterize your outside faucets and pipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36862_winterize_your_outside_faucets_and_pipes My mom gave me this genius idea. Use an inexpensive swim noodle (found at Dollar Tree for one dollar) to insulate outside pipes and faucets. Cut a length of the noodle to fit the pipe or faucet, cut a slit in the side, and slip it over the pipe/faucet. Inexpensive, and works just as good as the more expensive pipe insulation. Sat, 5 Nov 2011 15:33:00 EST adjusting to Daylight Savings Time http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36859_adjusting_to_daylight_savings_time Since my son was about a year old we've started changing our clocks on the Fri of DST weekends, it gives us all day Sat AND Sun to get used to the time change, helpful esp in the spring when you have to get up an hour earlier. Sat, 5 Nov 2011 10:58:00 EST Baking Soda in a Spice Jar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36858_baking_soda_in_a_spice_jar Place baking soda in a clean, empty plastic spice jar. Sprinkle on carpets, pillows and fabric furnishings before vaccuming for freshness. Store uncapped in your icebox or freezer to absorb odors. Later, use the baking soda as a gentle cleanser for countertops or your microwave. Sat, 5 Nov 2011 10:36:00 EST Clean microwave and kill germs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36850_clean_microwave_and_kill_germs I take my dish sponge and soak it in water then throw it in the microwave for 2 min. It kill the germs in the dish sponge and everything in the microwave wipes off very easily. Get a clean sponge and microwave all in one. Fri, 4 Nov 2011 10:08:00 EST Cut the bottom off the pumpkin instead of the top. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36848_cut_the_bottom_off_the_pumpkin_instead_of_the_top When you are about to begin carving your pumpkin I suggest you try cutting the bottom off instead. That way all you have to do to light the candle or turn on the battery candle is lift up the pumpkin off it's base. No more shoving your arm into a wet and slimey pumpkin. EW! The pumpkin lasts longer, too.<br>Happy Halloween! Fri, 4 Nov 2011 08:18:00 EST Save time http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36765_save_time Scorched pots or pans..just soak overnight with a dryer sheet.The burned on crap will wipe off like wipe off like melted butter. Wed, 26 Oct 2011 21:25:00 EST Mini-Trampoline Walks and Jumps...FUN!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36739_minitrampoline_walks_and_jumpsfun It has been fun walking and jumping while watching TV. <em>306</em> Mon, 24 Oct 2011 17:17:00 EST Pumpkin lights - no candles!!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36710_pumpkin_lights_no_candles While decorating for the Girl Scout Halloween party today, one of the leaders shared an Awesome idea. She uses those push lights (as seen on tv - those battery operated lights they sell to use in closets and such) inside her jack o lanterns instead of candles. They are much brighter than other things and no flames to worry about!!! Fri, 21 Oct 2011 14:03:00 EST Wires cannot be tamed but they can be identified! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36640_wires_cannot_be_tamed_but_they_can_be_identified Even if we organize, zip tie or tape wires, they seem to always become a mess and you can never figure out which wire goes where. We bought a package of multi-colored electrical tape & put a piece of tape around the wire at the end that goes into the TV and then put a matching piece on the back of the component , this cuts down on confusion since we have Blu Ray, stereo, a VCR & kids that pull out the wires to play video games <em>28</em> Thu, 13 Oct 2011 00:30:00 EST Roll towels when putting in linen closet http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36599_roll_towels_when_putting_in_linen_closet Instead of folding towels, roll them. They actually stack better and take up less room. Then, when someone wants the towel at the bottom of the pile, they whole pile doesn't come out either! Sun, 9 Oct 2011 16:16:00 EST Tennis balls & your dryer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36539_tennis_balls_your_dryer To decrease drying time and fluff clothes use tennis balls from the Dollar Store. Sat, 1 Oct 2011 18:48:00 EST Easily clean a crockpot with old credit card http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36514_easily_clean_a_crockpot_with_old_credit_card Crockpots are great, but they can get some baked on stuff that's hard to remove. I find that an expired credit card is great for scraping. They're flexible and will curve to fit a curve. Fri, 30 Sep 2011 15:10:00 EST To quickly chop small tomatoes, grapes etc.! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36430_to_quickly_chop_small_tomatoes_grapes_etc To quickly chop up small items for a snack or meal like cherry tomatoes or grapes take 2 lids from tupperware or the plastic take-out soup containers and place on face down on the counter, place tomatoes in the top, then turn over the other lid on top of the tomatoes and slide between the lids (keep fingers out of the way!). It works great and gets the job done quickly, and will reduce any choking hazard for little kids! Wed, 21 Sep 2011 12:07:00 EST Paper Clips http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36420_paper_clips Don't buy those snack bag clips. Instead, save $ and use those extra paper clips you have hanging around the house. Mon, 19 Sep 2011 18:12:00 EST Just clean! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36394_just_clean I know it sounds silly but living with chronic depression, I've taken just about any route i can to improve my mental health and the best thing so far funnily enough is to just clean. If i see an unwashed cup, grabbing it and cleaning it makes me feel a little better. Dusty floor? 5 minutes of sweeping and i feel a world better simply because i know i just accomplished something (even if it was small =P). One teensy tiny accomplishment in an otherwise empty day can make a world of difference ... Sat, 17 Sep 2011 09:39:00 EST Getting the family involved http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36362_getting_the_family_involved To get my kids involved in their nutrition, I challenged my children, now 14,12 and 9 to see who could come up with the most nutritional meal. Each kid gets to cook one meal per week and we have an pride wall to show off the kids favorite recipes. We've done this for 10 years and the kids love choosing some of their meals. Tue, 13 Sep 2011 20:02:00 EST Need A Boost Or Relaxation? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36340_need_a_boost_or_relaxation If you are like me and need either a little boost when you wake up or something to relax at the end of a hard day, Try showering with Palmolive Naturals. I use the Orange Blossom Shower Milk (Refreshing Moment) in the morning to give me a little kick. And then Coconut Shower Milk (Pampering Touch) to relax me in the evening, These are great!. Sun, 11 Sep 2011 17:36:00 EST make any/all bags multi faceted http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36336_make_anyall_bags_multi_faceted i never throw away a clean bag - whether it is plastic, paper, shopping, cloth, cellophane or foil. large bags comforters come in stores summer clothes. shipping bags from large items-cover lawn cushions for the winter, pillow bags are heavy mil great for garbage-line garbage cans Sun, 11 Sep 2011 14:25:00 EST BAD FOOD http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36326_bad_food Went to the grocery store and talked to the owner about the way they are packing the fresh fruits because the fruits are molding & rotting. People are eating the grapes so they tie the bag tight but the fruit can't breathe & gets crushed. I told him I won't buy it if they do that and I buy a lot of it in fruits and veggies every week but I can't take a loss in my food. He said bring it back but I am not in town every day so the food would be real bad by the time i do that. Never a dull moment... Sat, 10 Sep 2011 23:47:00 EST Helpful Tip: Greeting Cards for Hospital Patients http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36274_helpful_tip_greeting_cards_for_hospital_patients When sending a greeting card to a hospital patient ..I put the patient's home address in the return box. If they go home or transfer to a different facility before the card gets to them, it will get sent to their home rather than back to you. <em>148</em> Tue, 6 Sep 2011 15:08:00 EST What I Discovered During a Power Outage http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36270_emergency_lightsno_batteries_yikes The power is OUT! Flashlights dim? Candles too dangerous with kids/pets? No batteries left in the store? Try the little individual solar lights designed for outdoors. I bought some at a discount store for cheap. I keep a few on my sunny fencepost...they stay clean and within easy reach to bring inside for great indoor lighting in an emergency or any day to save electricity and use the sun's free energy. <br>BONUS: Our old dog needs a night light, this kept us safe & worry free. <em>67<... Tue, 6 Sep 2011 09:32:00 EST PRETTY DAY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36266_pretty_day The weather is cooling some but there will still be some hot days. I hate to see the colder weather come because I like to be outside working and you can't when it is cold. I live where we have 4 seasons and I would not trade it for anything else. With each season they have their own beauty and that is what makes it special. I will stay in little Delaware and love how it is. We have a nice, safe area to live in when it come to bad weather Smile stay happy where you are. Joyce Mon, 5 Sep 2011 23:25:00 EST LEMON STEAM YOUR MICROWAVE http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36256_lemon_steam_your_microwave Not being a lover of chemicals for cleaning around the house, I often use diluted lemon juice or white vinegar, and it is great for cleaning the microwave.<br><br>Just half fill a bowl with water, add some lemon juice (the bottled type - no need to squeeze your own). Place in microwave and blitz for a few minutes on full power - then just wipe over. <em>250</em> Sun, 4 Sep 2011 19:47:00 EST Laundering ink out of fabric http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36252_laundering_ink_out_of_fabric An inkpen 'exploded' in my son's Ref. soccer uniform pocket and there were a few more 'blots on other parts of the shirt. (He forgot to tell me - I found it in the dryer) I remembered an old treatment I had heard about but never used:<br> 1.) Dampen the area. 2.) Spray the area with hair spray!<br>3.) Pour a little dishsoap on the area 4.) Add a capful of white vinegar 5.) Blot it with a paper towel 6.) Let it sit for 30 minutes. 7.) Scrub w/a small brush (You may need to repeat this proces... Sun, 4 Sep 2011 11:41:00 EST HOLIDAY WEEKEND http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36246_holiday_weekend Everyone have a great time this holiday weekend with family and friends. Stay safe, happy and healthy while your having fun. God bless all of you each day.<br><br>Smile Joyce Sat, 3 Sep 2011 22:31:00 EST Moving On... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36231_moving_on Moving can be traumatic. It's common to do a house blessing or throw a party when you move into a new place, but I have found it really helpful when you are moving out! With family and close friends, in each room share a memory (happy, sad, or otherwise) and offer a hope for the new people who will soon occupy that place. It brings a lot of healing and helps with letting go for the whole family. Thu, 1 Sep 2011 17:42:00 EST Washing walls the easy way, (great for horizontally challenged) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36226_washing_walls_the_easy_way_great_for_horizontally_challenged I was mopping our wooden floors with the sponge head that is best for wood, and noticed a bunch of smudges on a wall. In a hurry, I simply tried the mop, with the Lemon Pine Sol, and it came off the first time. I ended up mopping all of the walls. The dust I did not see, came off really well, and the rooms sparkle. And the house smells great. I had to do extra scrubbing where there were food spots, but that was all there was to it. If you have carpet, be careful to use less water on mop. Thu, 1 Sep 2011 10:38:00 EST Reduce your Ironing Time! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=36125_reduce_your_ironing_time When I hang my clothes on the line, I hang anything that might require ironing on a coat hanger and hang it over the line! Saves line space if that's limited, and the vast majority of the wrinkles just drop out, especially if there is a breeze.<br>Jut pop a peg over the hook to secure in place and you can fit lots of things on a small line. Multipeg sox to the bottom of the hanger to save even more space. Many things dont need ironing at all, which is alright by me! <em>30</em> Fri, 26 Aug 2011 04:49:00 EST Baby Wipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35954_baby_wipes Baby wipes can be used for more things than just cleaning up after diaper changes. They make excellent stain removers for clothing/fabric, but you have to attend to the stain right way. They're also good for cleaning around the house. :)<br> <em>30</em> Thu, 11 Aug 2011 18:46:00 EST Diamond Jewelry Cleaner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35952_diamond_jewelry_cleaner A secret I learned from a co-worker that had a family member in the diamond industry (not for use on soft stones):<br><br>In a small bowl, add 1/3 cup of water, two drops of dish soap and a 1/4 cup of glass cleaner.<br><br>Microwave for 40 sec, or until hot.<br><br>Add jewelry to clean. Be careful not to use this on gems that are soft like opal and emeralds. ***use for gold, platinum and diamonds only***<br><br>soak for a 1 - 2 min. gently brush w and old toothbrush.<br><br>Rinse really ... Thu, 11 Aug 2011 15:09:00 EST Create a "laundry list" http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35945_create_a_laundry_list For all of those items that only get washed once in a while (curtains, pillows, comforters, etc.), create a list or a computer document of the washing instructions as soon as you get the item. Then if the tag comes off or fades, or if the washing instructions were printed directly on the package, you have them at easy access anytime. Wed, 10 Aug 2011 22:39:00 EST dog as cleaner, LOL http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35942_dog_as_cleaner_lol Some of you may find this gross, and I am sorry. I find it kinda funny. My dog LOVES to lick the floor of our kitchen and dining room. As long as there isn't anything toxic to the dog, I let him clean up the scraps. He does a better job than some of the cleaning products out there. Wed, 10 Aug 2011 14:22:00 EST no wrinkle clothes straight from the dryer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35919_no_wrinkle_clothes_straight_from_the_dryer Put a couple of tennis balls in your dryer - they will not hurt your clothes or other garments and your clothes will come out wrinkle free --- plus I think it has cut down my drying time some as well === just give it a try --- you'll see and wonder <br>" why didnt I think of that? " <em>244</em> Tue, 9 Aug 2011 11:55:00 EST Free Perfume/Cologne Samples http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35706_free_perfumecologne_samples What to do with those free perfume/cologne samples from magazines and mailers? Simply open them up to release the smell and insert into your clothing drawers/closets/bathroom for some new and delicious scents...his and hers. If you end up liking the smell...take the card with you and head to the store! (I got six of them in the mail today)! <em>148</em> Thu, 28 Jul 2011 13:06:00 EST House cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35676_house_cleaning <em>9</em> I at one time cleaned homes for a living for extra money. The secret tip that I used and it really helped me was tostart at the back of the house and work forward and to start on the left side of each room and work to the rt and then the middle. I felt It gave me a better perspective as to what had been done and the people involved could also see more progress. Point ,.Have a plan and work the Plan Wed, 27 Jul 2011 15:32:00 EST a clean microwave http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35669_a_clean_microwave Almost everyone uses a dish sponge to clean dishes but they get nasty so here is my trick to clean your sponge and your microwave. To sanitize your sponge microwave it for 1 minute as long as it is damp (say after cleaning dishes) it will create a steam bath and loosen the grime in your microwave. So now your sponge is clean and your microwave just needs to be wiped out to sparkle. Wed, 27 Jul 2011 11:18:00 EST LOOK AND REMOVE! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35658_look_and_remove Clearing all edible items off of everywhere in home. <br>Be it a piece of hard candy, pumpkin seeds, nuts, all grain crackers, bottle/can of juice to put in frig later, when there is room. Removing from sight, sure helps keep it from going between the lips. Wed, 27 Jul 2011 08:34:00 EST Cast-Iron Pan as Recipe Board http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35586_castiron_pan_as_recipe_board Hang a skillet on a kitchen wall and you’ll have a convenient magnetic spot to display recipes, important reminders, and anything else your brain is too, well, fried to remember. <br> <em>432</em> Sun, 24 Jul 2011 00:07:00 EST Can as Biscuit Cutter http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35545_can_as_biscuit_cutter Most biscuit cutters make overly wide biscuits, anyway&#8213;more beret than top hat. Use a tomato-paste can to achieve the proper size. First, scoop out the paste and freeze it in Tupperware or a storage bag. Then remove both the top and the bottom with a can opener and wash the interior. To prevent sticking, dip the can in flour before each cut. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 22 Jul 2011 05:19:00 EST Cake Stand as Appetizer Server http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35500_cake_stand_as_appetizer_server To cut down on waiting time for hors d’oeuvres, stack a small cake stand on top of a larger one to increase your surface area for canapés or crudités and free up precious table space. <br> <em>432</em> Thu, 21 Jul 2011 04:24:00 EST Cake Stand as Candle Holder http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35456_cake_stand_as_candle_holder Create a candle centerpiece to light up your wedding (or you dinner table) by using cake stands as platforms for votive and pillar candles in assorted sizes.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 20 Jul 2011 04:31:00 EST Coffee Beans as Pie Weights http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35394_coffee_beans_as_pie_weights When prebaking a piecrust, use beans to keep it from puffing up or shrinking into the pie plate: Line the bottom and sides of the cold dough with foil and fill to the brim with beans. <br><br> <em>432</em> Mon, 18 Jul 2011 23:21:00 EST Vase as Toilet Paper Storage http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35344_vase_as_toilet_paper_storage The perfect arrangement for helping toilet paper hide in plain sight. Guests don't have to root around for a new roll in your not absolutely, positively tidy vanity, and you always know when you're running low. <br><br> <em>432</em> Sun, 17 Jul 2011 22:44:00 EST Bundt Pan as Vertical Roaster http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35287_bundt_pan_as_vertical_roaster For a juicy bird that’s crispy all the way around, first layer potatoes, carrots, and onions on the bottom of the pan. Then season the chicken and place in the pan with the cavity over the center hole. Set the dish on a cookie sheet to collect any drippings and roast as usual. <br> <em>432</em> Sat, 16 Jul 2011 16:23:00 EST run that dishwasher http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35274_run_that_dishwasher I found that if I go ahead and run the dishwasher even if its not "full" I am less likely to get behind on dishes and the kitchen. whenever I wait to have "full" dishwasher usually I have to many dishes and have run out of clean plates. so its better to spend the extra money and run the dishwasher as is Sat, 16 Jul 2011 10:31:00 EST Ten Second Tidy...All grown up! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35246_ten_second_tidyall_grown_up On the old children's television program "Big Comfy Couch" Loonette the clown always ended the show by tackling her "big mess" with a "ten second tidy". Ten minutes before I head up to bed helps keep my "big mess" under control. You'd be surprised how much can be accomplished in such a short period of time if you stay focused. Fri, 15 Jul 2011 15:03:00 EST Mold Ice With a Bundt Pan http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35242_mold_ice_with_a_bundt_pan Give a punch bowl an elegant (and functional) touch with this floating ice sculpture. Simply fill the cake pan with water (or nonalcoholic punch), freeze, and pop out before serving. <br><br> <em>432</em> Fri, 15 Jul 2011 14:01:00 EST Helpful Around The House http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35236_helpful_around_the_house About a year ago we noticed that our son (nearly 4) really wanted to help us clean. So instead of saying no you're too little, we encourage him to help with chores that are safe for him to help with. He helps with the garbage, the laundry (changing from washer to dryer and dryer to folding), put the silverware away from the dishwasher, and gets to hold the cord while I vacuum. Everyday he keeps his room picked up, he gets $0.25 for his piggy bank. It works for us and the house stays nice and ... Fri, 15 Jul 2011 11:44:00 EST Always throwing out bread? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35207_always_throwing_out_bread Keep the bag from you last loaf of bread. Split your new loaf in half, use the saved bag and freeze half for later! Thu, 14 Jul 2011 20:23:00 EST old furniture http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35180_old_furniture Dont throw away well built wooden furniture!refinish paint or spray paint it and give it a new attractive life. Thu, 14 Jul 2011 16:49:00 EST Microwave your sponge to kill germs! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35142_microwave_your_sponge_to_kill_germs To kill germs and prolong the life of your sponge, put the wet sponge in the microwave for 30 seconds. I do this every time I use the sponge at work, and the sponge stays fresh smelling for ages! Thu, 14 Jul 2011 09:40:00 EST Safe Bubbles! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35139_safe_bubbles I have a toddler that loves bubbles but isn't the most coordinated! Sometimes when your kids are playing with bubbles, they can go into their eyes or mouth... So.. I found that the solution to that is to use her "tearless" bath soap! You can either use the shampoo or bubble bath, just make sure it's the tearless version! Thu, 14 Jul 2011 09:34:00 EST Business Card Holder as Sugar Packet Carrier http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35110_business_card_holder_as_sugar_packet_carrier Use a business card case to make packets of your favorite sweetener portable. You'll always have coffee your way&#8213;without a purse full of powder from torn packets. <br> <em>432</em> Thu, 14 Jul 2011 00:36:00 EST Baby wipes as instant stain removers (from a TV wardrobe person) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35058_baby_wipes_as_instant_stain_removers_from_a_tv_wardrobe_person I learned this trick from the wardrobe person on "Friends': A baby wipe is an excellent instant stain remover when you spill something on yourself. It's what they use on the set on taping days if an actor spills! When a spill happens, blot the stain with a napkin, then blot with a baby wipe until the stain is gone. It works on coffee and most foodstains. I find even if I can't get it out completely, it will usually still wash out! I don't have kids but I carry a small pack of baby wipes anywa... Wed, 13 Jul 2011 04:20:00 EST Club Soda http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35057_club_soda Use club soda to: Shine up a scuffed stainless-steel sink. Buff with a cloth dampened with club soda, then wipe dry with another clean cloth.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 13 Jul 2011 04:07:00 EST Make your own dishwasher detergent cheap! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=35034_make_your_own_dishwasher_detergent_cheap In a plastic container, mix 1 1/2 cup baking soda, 1 cup Borax, and 1/2 cup kosher salt. Mix well. Use in your dishwasher like powdered detergent. Tue, 12 Jul 2011 15:44:00 EST Oatmeal to clean hands http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34998_oatmeal_to_clean_hands Use it to: Scrub very dirty hands. Make a thick paste of oatmeal and water; rinse well.<br> <em>432</em> Tue, 12 Jul 2011 03:15:00 EST PREVENT A FIRE! Clean your dryer lint trap! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34996_prevent_a_fire_clean_your_dryer_lint_trap Since I spotted another poster's secret to make it easier to clean your dryer lint trap, I'll post this reminder that MANY housefires are caused by excess lint buildup in dryer lint traps. More than we know, according to the local fire fighters! Clean them faithfully before & after each use! Tue, 12 Jul 2011 01:53:00 EST Clean your dryer lint trap with a used fabric softener sheet. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34928_clean_your_dryer_lint_trap_with_a_used_fabric_softener_sheet After drying your laundry, you should always empty the lint trap. Yet when you do, it tends to fly everywhere. Take a used fabric softener sheet out of the laundry and use that to collect the lint. The anti-static properties will keep it from flying everywhere and the fibers help grab all of it in one swipe. Sun, 10 Jul 2011 15:54:00 EST Use ketchup to Remove tarnish http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34924_use_ketchup_to_remove_tarnish Remove tarnish from copper and brass cookware. Squeeze ketchup onto a cloth and rub it on pots and pans. They should go back to their coppery color in minutes. Rinse with warm water and dry with a towel. <br><br> <em>432</em> Sun, 10 Jul 2011 15:27:00 EST Salt for Hard water http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34895_salt_for_hard_water For a paste that removes hard-water stains, mix 1/4 cup salt with 2 tablespoons vinegar.<br> <em>432</em> Sun, 10 Jul 2011 06:02:00 EST Temptation Free http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34894_temptation_free I buy nothing like chocolates, cakes, biscuits, sweets etc.<br>that could possibly tempt me. So if I go to fridge, larder etc.<br>there will be nothing non-healthy in there. Friends know not to bring me food or wine, only flowers! Sun, 10 Jul 2011 03:48:00 EST Freshen your disposal by eating an orange! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34874_freshen_your_disposal_by_eating_an_orange If your garbage disposal is smelling a bit foul, turn on the water, start the disposal, and toss in orange peels one at a time. Larger peels will spin around a few times as they're chopped, helping to remove pieces stuck in there, and the smell will be replaced by the strong smell of fresh orange. When the peels are gone, keep running the disposal and the water for another minute to make sure it's all rinsed. Sat, 9 Jul 2011 16:00:00 EST Gardeners Killing the Colorado Potato Beetle Organically http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34841_gardeners_killing_the_colorado_potato_beetle_organically This works for Japanese beetles too. Go out a couple of days with a container of soapy water. Flick all the seen beetles into the water. This is the key kill the ones there directly by HAND. Then spray the plant with a solution of fresh crushed garlic and water which has sat overnight, repeat if you need to. It is working in my garden!<br>Try an organic bug killer too if you like. Sat, 9 Jul 2011 08:26:00 EST Liquid Dish Soap http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34827_liquid_dish_soap To create a single-use cleaning solution, dissolve a teaspoon of liquid dish soap in a quart of water, then add a teaspoon of vinegar. (Do not add the two at the same time; the acid in the vinegar will neutralize the alkali in the soap.)<br> <em>432</em> Fri, 8 Jul 2011 21:29:00 EST Homemade Tarnish Remover that ACTUALLY works! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34786_homemade_tarnish_remover_that_actually_works I went into a jacuzzi wearing a sterling silver necklace and it turned BROWN! I had warn this necklace for 4 years and this had never happened before! Here's how I fixed it:<br>~Take a pot deep enough to submerge what your trying to fix.<br>~Line the pot with aluminum foil.<br>~Add 1tsp of salt and 1tsp of baking soda<br>~Add enough water to cover the object<br>~Bring to a boil and "cook" for at least 3 minutes!<br>~It was a bit dull afterward so I cleaned it with toothpaste and it's good a... Fri, 8 Jul 2011 11:15:00 EST Corn starch more than a thickener http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34784_corn_starch_more_than_a_thickener If you have a spill on a carpet, first blot out what you can and then cover the stain in corn starch. The corn starch sucks up the left over liquid right out of the rug. Just sweep up and then vacuum when dry. Fri, 8 Jul 2011 10:51:00 EST Ammonia for a strong grease-cutting http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34776_ammonia_for_a_strong_greasecutting Dilute 1 tablespoon of ammonia in a pint of water for a strong grease-cutting solution.<br><br> <em>432</em> Fri, 8 Jul 2011 03:53:00 EST Power Clean http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34769_power_clean Power cleaning burns calories, targets your main muscle groups, and helps relieve that stress-inducing clutter in your home! Thu, 7 Jul 2011 23:13:00 EST laundry dryer sheets help out more than just laundry! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34755_laundry_dryer_sheets_help_out_more_than_just_laundry use a damp laundry dryer sheet ( I've found that the cheap ones work just as good as the other) to wipe the soap scum right off of shower doors it has a clean fresh smell to them and works wonders on taken off the soap scum! Thu, 7 Jul 2011 15:33:00 EST The mirracles of white vinegar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34734_the_mirracles_of_white_vinegar To remove or set a crease, use a clean cloth to moisten the area with white vinegar and press with a iron. Put a 10% solution of white vinegar in your steam iron to help prevent wrinkles as you wear your cloths. A cup of white vinegar (or more depending upon wash size) added to laundry helps rid your cloths of stubborn odors. Also works on upholstery and carpet. Thu, 7 Jul 2011 09:44:00 EST Hand Cream http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34731_hand_cream How frustrating is it to have hand cream left in the bottom of the dispenser and not be able to get it out because the pump won't reach? I get to it by cutting the plastic dispenser in half and putting the remaining hand cream in a tightly-covered plastic container. After 3 or 4 times of doing this, there are 4 or 5 ounces of hand cream to be used. Thu, 7 Jul 2011 09:02:00 EST Distilled White Vinegar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34710_distilled_white_vinegar This mild acid works on alkaline substances, dissolving scale, inhibiting mold, and cutting soap scum. It's terrific for stains such as coffee, rust, and tea. Dilute distilled white vinegar in water to cut through tacky dirt, soap scum, mineral deposits, or wax buildup. (Add a drop of essential oil to diffuse the vinegar odor.) For heavy buildup, soak a rag in vinegar, lay it over the area, leave it for an hour, and then scrub.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 6 Jul 2011 21:12:00 EST Baby Oil http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34676_baby_oil I use baby oil to clean my granite countertops, it saves money on expensive countertop cleaners, and they look Great! Just put some oil on the counter tops and wipe with clean cloth or paper towels and then wipe with a clean paper towel or cloth. Wed, 6 Jul 2011 06:41:00 EST Baking Soda http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34675_baking_soda This works best on proteins, grease, and animal messes. Because it's slightly abrasive, it can be used for scouring -- and, of course, it's a natural deodorizer. Sprinkle baking soda directly onto the soiled area and scrub with a damp cloth. For added cleaning power, mix it with water to form a paste the consistency of peanut butter, then scrub.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 6 Jul 2011 04:55:00 EST Stacked Teflon pan saver - coffee filters http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34665_stacked_teflon_pan_saver_coffee_filters I stack my frying pans (and all my other pans too) inside of each other to save cupboard space. I put a coffee filter between the pans so that they don't scratch each other up. This also helps me (and my husband) know where the clean pan goes back in the cupboard stack. Tue, 5 Jul 2011 21:31:00 EST Carpet Deodorizer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34659_carpet_deodorizer For fresher smelling carpets (and vacuum cleaner):<br>In a bowl, add up to 10 drops of essential oil to 1 C of baking soda (I like to combine grapefruit and tangerine oils.) Mix really well to distribute the oil throughout the baking soda. Sprinkle on carpets and leave for at least 15 min. Vacuum thoroughly. Tue, 5 Jul 2011 17:03:00 EST All those orphaned remotes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34646_all_those_orphaned_remotes If you have a cable box or universal remote, you end up with orphaned remotes. Use a strip of velcro and stick the remote where is won't be seen on the TV, VCR, etc Tue, 5 Jul 2011 09:08:00 EST Glass Cleaner http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34642_glass_cleaner Make your own streak-free glass cleaner by mixing a solution of 2 cups water, 2 cups rubbing alcohol, and 1/2 cup ammonia. Put the mixture in a spray bottle (32 ounces or larger) and use a clean, absorbent lint-free rag (soft cotton is ideal) to wipe the glass. The ammonia does most of the cleaning and the alcohol speeds up the drying time to help eliminate streaks.<br> <em>432</em> Tue, 5 Jul 2011 04:03:00 EST Lemon Scrubber http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34622_lemon_scrubber Dip a lemon half in borax and use it as a scrubber for the bathroom, kitchen counters, cupboards, and appliances -- any surface that is likely to have both alkali and acidic dirt.<br>To remove rust or food stains on countertops, rub a cut lemon over the spot or squeeze fresh lemon juice onto the area and let it sit for up to 30 minutes.<br> <em>432</em> Mon, 4 Jul 2011 12:54:00 EST Curtains... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34586_curtains A good use for your old shower curtain is to use as a drop cloth when painting. Sun, 3 Jul 2011 15:03:00 EST Toilet Cleaner/Deodorizer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34553_toilet_cleanerdeodorizer Sprinkle toilet bowl with 1/4 cup baking soda. Drizzle with 1/4 cup vinegar, then scour with a toilet brush.<br> <em>432</em> Sat, 2 Jul 2011 16:18:00 EST Bundt Pan as Corn Holder http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34530_bundt_pan_as_corn_holder Cut corn from the cob without the mess. Place an ear in the center of a Bundt pan. As you slide the knife down, the corn will fall right into the pan. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 1 Jul 2011 20:36:00 EST Window Cleaning Trick http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34501_window_cleaning_trick Use coffee filters to clean your mirrors and windows. They even work in the vehicle. <em>225</em> Fri, 1 Jul 2011 10:21:00 EST using old socks http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34491_using_old_socks Every month dig through your sock box- cut open the ones that don't have a match, or that are too worn to wear- our household use- cleaning! I don't feel as guilty throwing it away if I get it too soiled. We also was and reuse for cleaning until they just fall apart. Fri, 1 Jul 2011 06:57:00 EST Baking Soda as Hair Cleanser http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34488_baking_soda_as_hair_cleanser If daily use of mousse or gel is weighing down your locks, add a pinch or two of baking soda to your shampoo once a week to remove product buildup. Getting squeaky-clean strands is a piece of cake. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 1 Jul 2011 03:45:00 EST Nifty Dirt Catcher http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34457_nifty_dirt_catcher Line the bottom of mudroom cubbies or an entry closet with rimmed baking sheets. Leave wet and muddy shoes on the trays to dry; then simply pop the sheets into the dishwasher to clean.<br> <em>432</em> Thu, 30 Jun 2011 12:26:00 EST Aluminum Foil as Wrinkle Remover http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34377_aluminum_foil_as_wrinkle_remover To get wrinkles out of silk, wool, and rayon clothes that can't take direct heat, place a piece of foil on your ironing board, then lay the garment flat over it. With the steam button down, pass the iron three to four inches over the fabric several times. Wet heat radiating from the foil helps smooth out wrinkles. <br> <em>432</em> Tue, 28 Jun 2011 20:17:00 EST Stretch your laundry detergent! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34365_stretch_your_laundry_detergent Laundry detergent usually says "Fill cap to line 1," but it's impossible to see line 1, so we just fill up the cap, right? This uses 4x as much soap as you need! Take a permanent marker and mark line 1 inside the cap (you'll need a bright light to find it). Only fill to that line -- even for extra-large loads. Your clothes will get just as clean, and you'll save tons of money! Tue, 28 Jun 2011 16:16:00 EST Just 15 Minutes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34341_just_15_minutes Before I head off to bed for the night, I take a few minutes (about 15) to pick up around the house. There will be less for me to do in the morning, and at times, nothing. I can start my day with a clean house. Tue, 28 Jun 2011 10:21:00 EST Housework and Yardwork http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34334_housework_and_yardwork Doing housework is not "my thing." My profile picture is more aspirational than representative of what I love doing. Likewise with working in the yard. I took a play from the SparkGuy's playbook, and tried making a LITTLE goal. Now I do 20 min. per day of work outside, and 20 min. per day of housework. This works for me! Tue, 28 Jun 2011 07:10:00 EST Storing Leftovers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34326_storing_leftovers When storing leftovers in the refrigerator, use old butter tubs and cottage cheese containers. When its time to clean out the refrigerator you can discard the entire container. You won't have a spilled mess in the garbage can or a sink full of dirty dishes.<br><br> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 23:38:00 EST Cleaning the Microwave http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34325_cleaning_the_microwave Cleaning a microwave is easy. Fill up a cup of water and put it in there on high for a few minutes. The steam from the cup will loosen any stuck-on food, and then you can just wipe it away. It’s that simple.<br><br> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 23:34:00 EST Preventing Soap Scum in Tubs and Showers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34324_preventing_soap_scum_in_tubs_and_showers Since preventing soap scum build-up is a lot easier than cleaning it, squeegee water off shower walls and doors after every use or wipe them down with a towel. Mon, 27 Jun 2011 23:29:00 EST Cleaning Mini-blinds - Not as Hard as you Think! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34323_cleaning_miniblinds_not_as_hard_as_you_think Wipe down mini-blinds with a damp fabric softener sheet. This eliminates the static that causes dust to stick. The same trick works for TV and monitor screens.<br><br> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 23:26:00 EST Dryer Sheet as Thread Detangler http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34322_dryer_sheet_as_thread_detangler To prevent tangles, run a threaded needle through a sheet before you begin stitching.<br> <em>432</em> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 22:37:00 EST cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34319_cleaning My mother passed away in May. She lived a hoarder and I'm having a hard time into cleaning. I need to get motivated in some way. Maybe my kids will help me or I will make my mind up to get moving and clean. <em>101</em> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 22:12:00 EST Oven Cleaning Made Simple!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34314_oven_cleaning_made_simple To clean up spills in your oven, immediately sprinkle them with salt. When the oven has cooled, brush away the burnt-on food with a damp sponge. Simple. Effective. Mon, 27 Jun 2011 20:56:00 EST Sink Disposal Cleaning http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34310_sink_disposal_cleaning If you have a lemon that's a little past its prime, cut it in quarters and run it through your sink's disposal. This helps loosen the grime in the disposal and also "freshens" your drain. Mon, 27 Jun 2011 20:44:00 EST Cleaning Behind the Kids (#2) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34309_cleaning_behind_the_kids_2 Remove scuff marks, pen, and pencil from walls using a dry cloth and rubbing alcohol. Mon, 27 Jun 2011 20:38:00 EST Cleaning Behind the Kids (#1) http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34308_cleaning_behind_the_kids_1 Remove Crayon from walls using a damp sponge and colgate toothpaste. Rub carefully. Mon, 27 Jun 2011 20:37:00 EST "Listen" to a movie http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34306_listen_to_a_movie Instead of watching tv while doing housework, put in a movie that you have already seen a few times. That way, instead of being tempted to stop cleaning and going to see what's happening on the tv, you can just follow the dialogue and know already! Mon, 27 Jun 2011 20:22:00 EST Organization trick! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34289_organization_trick One way to keep a house clean - and keep yourself calm - is to clean as you go. If you see something on the floor, pick it up as you walk by - if you see something out of place, put it back as soon as you see it. This is much easier and less demanding than trying to do everything at once! Mon, 27 Jun 2011 15:21:00 EST Baby Shampoo as Lingerie Detergent http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34257_baby_shampoo_as_lingerie_detergent Baby shampoo is gentle on more than just your little one's eyes. It's perfect for lingerie too. Get the article wet, lather a pea-size amount of it into your hands and wash, as suggested, then air-dry. <br> <em>432</em> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 02:30:00 EST Always Be Polite http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34210_always_be_polite Without a doubt, in my house politeness gets me "everything" I want. Sat, 25 Jun 2011 23:53:00 EST HAVING COMPANY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34205_having_company There is not a lot of things good about being alone. Sure you need quiet time and time to do the things you want to do around the home. But 24/7 alone is not good and when friends or family come over you can laugh and have fun together. Never stay alone, join some clubs, sport events, visit friends and family you need to be around people and interact to be healthy. We are not made to be loners so live your life with people and laugh, stay healthy, smile. Sat, 25 Jun 2011 21:39:00 EST Cork as Earring Holder http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34176_cork_as_earring_holder Marry pairs of earrings. Stick the posts into a cork to keep them together.<br> <em>432</em> Sat, 25 Jun 2011 10:44:00 EST Baking Soda as Silver Polish http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34090_baking_soda_as_silver_polish To polish silver: Wash items, then place on aluminum foil in the bottom of a pot. Add a baking-soda solution (¼ cup soda, a few teaspoons salt, 1 quart boiling water) and cover for a few seconds. The result? A chemical reaction that gets the black off the gravy boat. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 24 Jun 2011 01:20:00 EST Paper Doily as Tote-Bag Art http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=34012_paper_doily_as_totebag_art Jazz up a canvas tote by securing a doily to it with adhesive spray, scalloped-side up, then gently painting over the holes with fabric paint. Remove the doily and let dry. <br> <em>432</em> Thu, 23 Jun 2011 00:13:00 EST Cleaning for Calories http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33988_cleaning_for_calories When I find myself bored and about to eat, I Clean a drawer, vacuum a floor, wipe up dust with long strokes or even clean mirrors. There is ALWAYS housework to do! Make it a game! 20 minutes of housework and I can eat that cookie! <em>225</em> Wed, 22 Jun 2011 16:17:00 EST time http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33987_time I find its easier to do things for myself when my baby is napping or down for the night. Wed, 22 Jun 2011 15:58:00 EST Repainting http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33984_repainting If you already have a great picture arrangement, but you need to repaint the room, try inserting toothpicks into the nail holes and paint right over them. After the paint dries, simply remove the toothpicks and you are then ready to rehang. Wed, 22 Jun 2011 15:29:00 EST Sock as Mason Jar Cover http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33980_sock_as_mason_jar_cover Desk upgrade. Place a Mason jar into a pretty patterned sock, then tuck excess fabric inside the jar. Fill with supplies.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 22 Jun 2011 14:35:00 EST Keep Coffee Tasting Like .....Coffee http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33927_keep_coffee_tasting_like_coffee Over time, your coffee-maker will build up a "plaque" of calcium and other minerals & gradually build up a mineral deposit that cuts off the flow of water - just like heart disease.<br><br>Make your coffee pot last up to four times longer and keep that real coffee taste. Once every 6-8 weeks add a half cup of vinegar to the water and let it cycle through.<br><br>Simply rinse with another cycle of plain water and your coffee will continue to taste great and won't get "hardening of it's arterie... Tue, 21 Jun 2011 16:12:00 EST Catch more dust and fluff with your broom http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33921_catch_more_dust_and_fluff_with_your_broom If you sprinkle a couple of drops of kerosene onto a soft broom it will collect fluff and dust better. Do this to the broom once a week. Tue, 21 Jun 2011 14:51:00 EST Eyeglasses Case as Snack Bar Holder http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33885_eyeglasses_case_as_snack_bar_holder To prevent a breakfast bar from becoming a breakfast crumble, stash it in an eyeglass or pencil case before throwing it in your bag. Or you can use it for a sewing kit. <em>432</em> Mon, 20 Jun 2011 23:10:00 EST Help with Hanging Art http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33864_help_with_hanging_art Remove the guess work from hanging pictures - Trace around the art onto newspaper or wrapping paper and cut it out. Arrange the paper on your walls until you figure where you want the art to go. Mon, 20 Jun 2011 15:31:00 EST Sunday Spring/Summer Cleaning - Music does wonders http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33845_sunday_springsummer_cleaning_music_does_wonders Time flies and the house gets cleaned with good tunes in the air...just turn on some music and start the day.<br>I managed to get so much done on Sunday I rewarded myself with a nap.<br>Music and cleaning - a match. Mon, 20 Jun 2011 11:31:00 EST Sprinkle cloves or talcum powder to get rid of ants http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33831_sprinkle_cloves_or_talcum_powder_to_get_rid_of_ants Sprinkled cloves will repel ants or try sprinkling across trails where they enter the house. Mon, 20 Jun 2011 02:10:00 EST GRAB BAG http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33816_grab_bag Today I planted flowers I got in a grab bag like I did yesterday. I have no ideal what they are and won't know till they grow. When I was planting the flowers today i saw 2 for black satin and I was going too put them in the flower garden and looked at them and thought they look like blackberry bushes and took it to the garden and compared the leaf. Then I thought I have black satin blackberries that I just picked a half of quart today. I will be fun having surprises with the flowers. Smile Sun, 19 Jun 2011 20:05:00 EST Instant Ice pack http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33813_instant_ice_pack Next time you have a picnic or BBQ with melting ice, grab a ziploc bag and bag the water and ice remains and freeze it.<br>You will have an instant ice pack ready for any household mishaps and bruises from playground! Sun, 19 Jun 2011 18:49:00 EST Repel flies using lavender oil http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33741_repel_flies_using_lavender_oil Sprinkle lavender oil on a cloth and rub around window frames and sills or anywhere flies enter. Sat, 18 Jun 2011 11:33:00 EST Apple Cider vinegar http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33738_apple_cider_vinegar Weight Loss <br>The use of apple cider vinegar as a home remedy for weight loss is centuries<br>old. D.C. Jarvis, M.D maintained that an overweight person could lose weight<br>gradually by taking 2 teaspoons of ACV in a glass of water before meals. <br><br> Sat, 18 Jun 2011 11:19:00 EST Shower Caddy as Laundry Room Storage http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33724_shower_caddy_as_laundry_room_storage Stock laundry room supplies over a doorknob so you know when to reload. Detergent, softener, and clothespins fit neatly in the dividers. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 17 Jun 2011 22:57:00 EST THUNDERSTORMS http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33723_thunderstorms Dogs and children can sleep right through a bad thunderstorm as we had last night till 3 AM and I couldn't go to bed. I checked on my 7 year old DGD and she was dead to the world.. Dogs laid under the fan and slept right on. I like quiet when I sleep and at least tonight's storm came through early. Good time to sleep tonight hope you all have one. Fri, 17 Jun 2011 22:14:00 EST Salt as Wine Stain Remover http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33668_salt_as_wine_stain_remover Lift red wine stains from washables with this fix: Stretch fabric over a bowl, cover with salt, and then carefully pour boiling water over it.<br> <em>432</em> Fri, 17 Jun 2011 00:25:00 EST Bounce Sheets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33649_bounce_sheets If you love to use dryer sheets in your laundry try keeping one in your pocket when you are outside, it helps keep mosquitoes away. Also if you have nats in your kitchen keep a couple out and the nats disappear. Also use a used dryer sheet in your hair to help eliminate static in your hair! I also put them in my boyfriends stinky shoes to help keep the stink away... My grandma shared these with me and I love all these tips!! Thu, 16 Jun 2011 15:09:00 EST Re-purpose plastic grocery bags http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33642_repurpose_plastic_grocery_bags Store plastice grocery bags in a used paper towel cardboard roll. <br>Keep one in your car to collect wrappers on road trips. Reuse bags as liners for small trash cans. <br>Knot dirty diapers in side to trap the smell. <br>AND, they work well to pooper-scooper after Fido! Thu, 16 Jun 2011 14:44:00 EST Dental Floss as Necklace String http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33640_dental_floss_as_necklace_string <br><br>Rethread the beads of a broken necklace. Slide beads onto a piece of floss one by one, leaving a few extra inches of loose string. Tie the ends to the jewelry findings from the original necklace and knot several times. <br> <em>432</em> Thu, 16 Jun 2011 14:16:00 EST Laundry time saver http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33596_laundry_time_saver Before I toss clothes in the hamper, I make sure they aren't inside out. That way, once the laundry is washed and dried, I can get right onto folding. It definitely saves a few minutes! Thu, 16 Jun 2011 00:13:00 EST FAMILY http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33583_family Even though I am not the best right now I stll love to have my children and their family come by. Right now I have 7 in my pool and I am inside letting them have fun. Then they are going to start the grill and get the food ready. My DGD is spending the night and Friday during the day since i haven't been able to get her it was better for her to come here. Enjoy your family because in a blink of an eye people can be gone and you will wish you spent time with them. Don't let that happen. Smile. Wed, 15 Jun 2011 19:32:00 EST Moving Furniture http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33556_moving_furniture If you happen to have hardwood floors, slip a throw rug under the furniture to slide easily across the floor - no strained backs and no gouged floors!<br> <em>334</em> Wed, 15 Jun 2011 09:20:00 EST Sock as Coffee Cup Sleeve http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33542_sock_as_coffee_cup_sleeve Protect your fingers from being burnt on a hot cuppa joe, by slipping a sock over the cardboard.<br> <em>432</em> Wed, 15 Jun 2011 01:17:00 EST Where's the charger?? http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33531_wheres_the_charger Do you have so many chargers and connectors to cell phones, computers, video games, cordless drills, mp3 players, etc? Well, I take a piece of sticky paper or tape and label the cord when I first get them. This way we aren't constantly asking the question. What's this charger for? It's right on the cord. <em>41</em> Tue, 14 Jun 2011 19:27:00 EST New use for tube socks http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33525_new_use_for_tube_socks I have had more than my share of "extra" socks. You know how it is, you wash, have an extra sock and the partner never shows up. I love them for dusting. Just slip it on, spray with polish, and get into those crevices you normally can not get into. Tue, 14 Jun 2011 17:00:00 EST air Freshener and tissue paper http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33515_air_freshener_and_tissue_paper I use spray air freshener to clean my windows and glass on curio cabinets etc. It is inexpensive and leaves a nice smell. Also using tissue paper instead of paper towel removes the lint factor when dusting out the curio cabinet. Tue, 14 Jun 2011 13:44:00 EST Lingerie Bag as Extra Storage http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33487_lingerie_bag_as_extra_storage Stash swimsuits or sports bras in a mesh bag, thread a hanger through one of the holes, and hang in your closet. Finding all those little bits and pieces will be a cinch. <br> <em>432</em> Mon, 13 Jun 2011 21:55:00 EST KEEP SHOWER GLASS SQUEAKY CLEAN http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33480_keep_shower_glass_squeaky_clean I use a clarifying shampoo on the shower glass at least once a week to keep the glass squeaky clean. I do not like using the harsh chemicals on the glass or the shower walls. This works great and it costs a lot less than those Cleaners on the market. I use Suave Clarifying shampoo. Mon, 13 Jun 2011 19:39:00 EST Salad Spinner as Sweater Dryer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33445_salad_spinner_as_sweater_dryer Speed the drying process for a favorite sweater. After hand-washing the garment, twirl it in the spinner to take out excess water. <br> <em>432</em> Sun, 12 Jun 2011 21:48:00 EST White hard stuff in the kettle - Home Remedy http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33435_white_hard_stuff_in_the_kettle_home_remedy Fill the kettle with water, add 1/4 cup of vinegar (you can add more), leave overnight. By morning the kettle will be shine as new. Sun, 12 Jun 2011 15:43:00 EST Bake something to warm your chilly home http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33434_bake_something_to_warm_your_chilly_home If your house is chilly on a cool spring or summer morning/day, instead of turning on the heat for a half hour or hour, bake or cook something to warm up the house. Use that day to cook large meals for freezing or bake that healthier recipe you've been wanting to try. Multi-tasking at its best - warm up a chilly house, get some cooking done without cranking up the a/c, and if it is cool outside, once the house warms up, open the windows to air out the house! Sun, 12 Jun 2011 15:05:00 EST Vinegar is a huge money saver! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33425_vinegar_is_a_huge_money_saver Vinegar is a wonderful all-purpose cleaner and deodorizer. Yes, it stinks, but it's much cheaper than store-bought cleaners and, even better, no chemicals. Some of my favorite uses for it:<br><br>--I put it in a spray bottle and clean counters with it<br>--deodorizes stinky fridges and plastic food containers<br>--dissolves lime build-up in a coffee maker<br>--if you have guinea pigs or other small animals, it will dissolve the calcified urine from the cage and clean it safely with no chemicl... Sun, 12 Jun 2011 11:24:00 EST Nail Polish as Eyeglass Screw Securer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33413_nail_polish_as_eyeglass_screw_securer Keep a loose screw secure in your eyeglass frames by dabbing it with a touch of clear nail polish.<br> <em>432</em> Sun, 12 Jun 2011 03:16:00 EST SWIM http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33402_swim Do I get my swimming exercise today or not. Pool was in the sunshine and the other side of the house was thundering. Every time I turned the pool pump on and thought I would swim boom, boom. Dogs don't like the thunder at all. So today change to other exercises and do the swim exercise inside. One way or the other I can get the exercise in. Be happy , healthy and alive. Smile Sat, 11 Jun 2011 19:56:00 EST Don't throw out old toothbrushes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33377_dont_throw_out_old_toothbrushes Old toothbrushes are great for cleaning minuscule little crevices. I use one dipped in jewellery cleaner to scrub my rings. Sat, 11 Jun 2011 10:34:00 EST Nutcracker as Cap Remover http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33359_nutcracker_as_cap_remover Clamp the nutcracker around the top of a glue, nail-polish, or beverage bottle to give you extra gripping power. Your reward: Tight caps no longer drive you nuts. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 10 Jun 2011 23:09:00 EST RAIN http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33354_rain All the plants, grass, trees and flowers are happy they finally got a drink of water and they will grow. The grass and weeds will start growing back now too. I hope everyone that hasn't had rain has gotten what they needed. Have a great weekend even if we have rain. Learn from Spark people. Fri, 10 Jun 2011 20:26:00 EST Getting a Job Done http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33351_getting_a_job_done To do a job quickly, I set a timer and try to beat it. For example, to clean the kitchen, I set the time for 20 min. It keeps me focused and you will be surprised what you can accomplish in 20 minutes. Putting clothes away? 15 minutes. Knowing I am playing beat the clock puts some fun in boring jobs. Fri, 10 Jun 2011 18:40:00 EST For the Anti Coupon Binder Couponers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33323_for_the_anti_coupon_binder_couponers Coupon Binders aren't for me. Folding coupons to fit the right way takes forever and I destroy my cuticles getting them in and out of baseball sleeves. Instead, I use a makeup case/bag...the HUGE ones Lancome, EL and Clinique put out during summer. The largest one I have holds hundreds of coupons (plus store policies and price lists). Just make sure you make a bunch of sections so you can find things quickly. It must have 2 zippers, otherwise it can open and spill. And they fit the cart sea... Fri, 10 Jun 2011 06:30:00 EST Baking Sheet as a Memo Board http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33319_baking_sheet_as_a_memo_board Set the baking sheet inside a 16-inch plate hanger mounted to the wall. Make sure the sheet is magnetic¯so good ideas will stick.<br> <em>432</em> Fri, 10 Jun 2011 01:06:00 EST Home Remedy http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33316_home_remedy Putting baking soda on a bee sting actually works! <br><br>Mix baking soda with water to form a thick paste and slap it on ASAP. "The sting is produced by an acid and if you put baking soda on as soon as you can, it neutralizes the acid.: <br><br> If you don't have don't have have baking soa, wet the effected area and rub it with an uncoated aspirin; the aspirin will help control swelling, pain, and inflammation. Fri, 10 Jun 2011 00:00:00 EST hot pack http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33308_hot_pack If you ever have a sore muscle. One thing you can do is take a regular sock and put a handful of rice. Tie the sock upp and microwave it for half a minute. It works great better than an ice pack and cheaper than a store bought hot patch. <em>100</em> Thu, 9 Jun 2011 20:18:00 EST Aluminum Foil as Fixture Protector http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33287_aluminum_foil_as_fixture_protector Protect doorknobs and hardware in the kitchen and bathroom when you're painting by wrapping foil around them to catch dribbles. The foil molds to the shape of whatever it's covering and stays firmly in place until the job is complete. <br> <em>432</em> Thu, 9 Jun 2011 13:31:00 EST Hanging out the washing http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33259_hanging_out_the_washing When you're hanging out the washing, if you have a Hills Hoist, or any height-adjustable clothesline, wind it up to a level where you have to stand on your toes and stretch to reach it. Thu, 9 Jun 2011 03:27:00 EST Organizing Temporary Storage Of Recyclables During the Day... http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33247_organizing_temporary_storage_of_recyclables_during_the_day I recycle as you probably do ,too! A method I found helpful for organizing the recyclables during the day without having to go out near the recyclable container CONSTANTLY is to have a plastic bag HANGING IN THE PANTRY CLOSET out of the way ,but across from the trash can so a person can clean up the kitchen and recycle at the same time! I then take the bag out each night to the large recyclable container and dump the contents and throw the plastic bag in the trash... Wed, 8 Jun 2011 19:07:00 EST Cooling down in the summer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33219_cooling_down_in_the_summer In the warm summer months just before finishing up in the shower, turn the water from hot to cold gradually. You would be amazed at how cold you may get the water to be and it feels great after the hot water. It also helps to cool down the bathroom from that sticky humid feeling after a shower. Standing under the cold water is good for my neck and shoulders according to my chiropractor after the hot shower. Wed, 8 Jun 2011 09:30:00 EST Aluminum Foil as Glassware Scrubber http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33213_aluminum_foil_as_glassware_scrubber To get baked-on food off a glass pan or an oven rack, use dishwashing liquid and a ball of foil in place of a steel-wool soap pad, says Mary Findley, president of the cleaning-products developer Mary Moppins. It's one way to recycle those used but perfectly good pieces of foil you hate to throw out. <br> <em>432</em> Wed, 8 Jun 2011 04:18:00 EST Your fridge http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33197_your_fridge When you're preparing a meal or setting a table, try to remember everything you'll want from the fridge (make a list if necessary) and take them out together so that you don't have to keep opening and closing the fridge door and affecting the temperature inside. Tue, 7 Jun 2011 16:37:00 EST Mop sheet substitute http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33192_mop_sheet_substitute Instead of buying expensive wet sheets for Swiffer-style mops, cut up old tee-shirts into same size pieces and tuck into the mop head and use with regular floor cleaners. They can be laundered and reused. Tue, 7 Jun 2011 13:12:00 EST Dryer Sheets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33176_dryer_sheets Put dryer sheets in emply suitcases to keep them from developing that musty smell. Tue, 7 Jun 2011 09:07:00 EST Use aluminum foil to mask off areas for painting http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33169_use_aluminum_foil_to_make_off_areas_for_painting Instead of fighting with tape and paper just smoosh some allumium foil around what ever you don't want painted like door handles, faucets, and light fixtures. Tape doesn't always stick right or is harder to get on than anticipated. :) Tue, 7 Jun 2011 06:53:00 EST Dryer Sheet as Drawer Sachet http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33166_dryer_sheet_as_drawer_sachet If fabric-softener sheets make your clothes smell nice in the dryer, just think about what they could do in your dresser. Slip a few fresh ones between folded clothes. <br> <em>432</em> Tue, 7 Jun 2011 05:00:00 EST Corkboard as Jewelry Organizer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33143_corkboard_as_jewelry_organizer Prevent necklaces from tangling in your jewlery box by hanging them on a cork board with thumbtacks.<br> <em>432</em> Mon, 6 Jun 2011 12:45:00 EST Don't Throw out dried out Wet Wipes http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33089_dont_throw_out_dried_out_wet_wipes As you use the wet wipes from the plastic bag with the hole on top, you notice they start drying out as you get to the last few...Don't throw them away. They make good nail polish remover rags. Just get it wet with the remover and use. Sun, 5 Jun 2011 00:23:00 EST Mesh Vegetable Bag as Dish Scrubber http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33084_mesh_vegetable_bag_as_dish_scrubber Repurpose the bag that held your potatoes to remove caked-on food from dishes. Wad the mesh into a ball, add soap and water, and scrub away. <br> <em>432</em> Sat, 4 Jun 2011 22:26:00 EST Kitchen grease cutter http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33073_kitchen_grease_cutter The fastest way I've found to cut the grease on stovetop and other kitchen surfaces is plain old rubbing alcohol. It won't clean, but if you clean first, then apply the alcohol, you'll have a nice grease-free shine. Sat, 4 Jun 2011 15:22:00 EST Funnel as Twine Dispenser http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33067_funnel_as_twine_dispenser Dispense yarn or twine at a craft station by placing the spool inside the funnel and pulling the end through the hole.<br><br> <em>432</em> Sat, 4 Jun 2011 11:30:00 EST Stain remover http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33050_stain_remover I took a shirt out of the washer and noticed a stain that I had forgotten to spray with stain remover. Since I keep my laundry basket in my closet I decided to keep my bottle of stain remover in the closet and spray my clothes when I put them in the laundry. This may be a nobrainer for some but it was a light bulb moment for me. <em>246</em> Fri, 3 Jun 2011 17:59:00 EST Use for berry containers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33036_use_for_berry_containers A Great use for the clear plastic containers that berries come in: start seeds in them! Before they start to come up, you can keep the lid on, to hold in the moisture. Then after the plants start poking their little heads out, cut the top of & use it put in underneith to help catch the water! Fri, 3 Jun 2011 14:26:00 EST Cleaning the stove. http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=33032_cleaning_the_stove I use Goo Gone to clean the stove top. It takes everything off and leaves a nice shine. No harsh chemicals or unpleasant scent. A little goes a long way versus some other stove cleaners. Fri, 3 Jun 2011 12:05:00 EST Whiter clothesa http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32961_whiter_clothesa To whiten white clothes: <br>Soak white clothes in hot water with <br>a slice of lemon for 10 minutes Wed, 1 Jun 2011 20:28:00 EST Clothespin as Holiday Card Display http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32960_clothespin_as_holiday_card_display Adhere a wide grosgrain ribbon to the wall with double-sided mounting tape, then attach holiday cards up and down it for a jolly–and changeable—seasonal exhibit. Both regular-size and mini clothespins will work. <br> <em>432</em> Wed, 1 Jun 2011 20:16:00 EST Staying busy http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32954_staying_busy Once you are at home always find something to do inside or outside of your home. Stay active and don't be a TV couch potato. Wed, 1 Jun 2011 17:58:00 EST Washing shower curtains http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32953_washing_shower_curtains Toss a few old bath towels in the washing machine when you wash your shower curtains. The towels will rub back and forth against the curtain, which helps remove all traces of dirt and scum. Hang shower curtains back up right out of the washing machine. They will dry quickly and the wrinkles will fall right out. Wed, 1 Jun 2011 17:53:00 EST Unfreeze disposal http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32951_unfreeze_disposal Garbage disposal hummms but stuck? Drop some denture tablets in with some hot water let soak for about 15 min. If disposal is not broken the denture tablets will unfreeze it Wed, 1 Jun 2011 16:28:00 EST Use vinegar to remove built up crud around faucets http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32931_use_vinegar_to_remove_built_up_crud_around_faucets When the minerals in the water begin to leave deposits around the faucets, soak and squeeze a rag out. Then wrap the rag around the area with deposits. <br>Take a cup of vinegar and using a microwave safe container, heat the vinegar until it's hot and near boiling. Pour the hot vinegar onto the deposits. The rag will keep the vinegar from going down the sink. When the rag cools, remove and scrape a bit. Most deposits will be gone. Repeat for deposits that are stubborn. Wed, 1 Jun 2011 10:09:00 EST Dancing http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32926_dancing Feel as if you're just too fat to go outside to let EVERYONE see you walking or trying to work on getting a better life? Work out in your home. It's summer - HUMIDITY here in Ohio, go down to the basement if you have one - put on some Gloria Estefan music (LOUD) and dance away. Without realizing it you'll be sweating - but it's a good sweat Wed, 1 Jun 2011 08:04:00 EST shout color catchers http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32915_shout_color_catchers I've been using these to wash my son's white baseball shirt along with his purple shirt - they work great! Tue, 31 May 2011 23:27:00 EST Dryer Sheet as Shoe Freshener http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32896_dryer_sheet_as_shoe_freshener Roll up one sheet per slipper, sneaker, or loafer, insert, and forget about stinky shoes. (Bonus uses: Toss them in hampers, on closet shelves, in diaper bags.)<br> <em>432</em> Tue, 31 May 2011 15:17:00 EST Cleaning trays under stove burners http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32894_cleaning_trays_under_stove_burners First I soak those catch-all trays under my stovetop burners. After I clean the rest, I take a fork and lightly scrape at all that gunk cooked on them. Most of it comes off in seconds, then I use the scrubby for a quick finish. Tue, 31 May 2011 14:56:00 EST Use a gallon plastic jug for killing weeds http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32890_use_a_gallon_plastic_jug_for_killing_weeds Need to spray weeds but worry about harming the plants around them? Cut the top (above the handle) and the bottom out of a gallon milk jug. Put the jug over the weed and spray into the milk jug from the top. Tue, 31 May 2011 13:16:00 EST Make a RECYCLED bird feeder! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32874_make_a_recycled_bird_feeder Take a gallon milk jug (make sure it's clean) cut a large hole in the flat side that's big enough for a bird to perch on. Hang the jug with twine by poking a hole in the cap of the jug and tying a knot (toward the inside) to hold it. Fill the bottom with about an inch of bird food! You can even let the kids help decorate it! Tue, 31 May 2011 08:29:00 EST Ant Problem http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32862_ant_problem <br><br>Ants hate cucumbers. <br>Keep the skin of cucumbers near the place or ant hole. <br><br> Mon, 30 May 2011 20:55:00 EST Paper Doily as a Cake Decoration http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32859_paper_doily_as_a_cake_decoration You baked the cake. Now you’re expected to frost it, too? Take a break from the sticky stuff and use a doily to stencil on a pretty sugar topping. Press a doily flat on top of a round cake and, using a fine-mesh sieve, sprinkle confectioners’ sugar liberally over the surface. Use two hands to carefully remove the doily post-dusting. <br> <em>432</em> Mon, 30 May 2011 18:38:00 EST Sooth a Bee or Wasp Sting http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32855_sooth_a_bee_or_wasp_sting My husband told me this once and I didn't believe him until I got stung. Cut an onion in half and hold on skin where you were stung...it sooths the stinging!! Mon, 30 May 2011 14:47:00 EST Packing to move http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32840_packing_to_move Use sweaters and sweatshirts to wrap up your breakable items when you are packing to move. They need to be packed too so they might as well do double duty! Mon, 30 May 2011 11:56:00 EST Straw as Ketchup Unclogger http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32827_straw_as_ketchup_unclogger Insert a straw until it reaches the bottom of the glass bottle. Shake the bottle, then pour, leaving the straw inside. The airflow provided by the straw breaks the condiment-stopping vacuum. <br> <em>432</em> Mon, 30 May 2011 05:59:00 EST how to unclog a sluggish drain http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32774_how_to_unclog_a_sluggish_drain Pour a can of cola down a sluggish drain to unclog. You'll be amazed how well this works. Sat, 28 May 2011 18:25:00 EST Clothespin as Hanger http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32772_clothespin_as_hanger Use clips to prevent silky sleeveless shirts and dresses from slipping off the hanger. And you can say goodbye to wrinkled sundresses on the closet floor. <br> <em>432</em> Sat, 28 May 2011 15:18:00 EST Dryer Lint as Modeling Dough http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32748_dryer_lint_as_modeling_dough Since you most likely have it in abundance, use it to make homemade modeling dough. Simply mix the lint with water and flour (and, if you prefer, food coloring), as directed below for an ear-resistible sculpture of Dumbo.<br>(See next page)<br> <em>432</em> Sat, 28 May 2011 04:12:00 EST DW40 http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32724_dw40 Spray DW40 to remove the black streaks on the lanoleum carpet <em>224</em> Fri, 27 May 2011 11:32:00 EST Set a Timer http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32713_set_a_timer As soon as I get home I set my oven timer for 30 minutes and get to cleaning. It keeps me focused on the task at hand, and it often turns into a race against the clock to see how much I can get done. (Usually it's a lot). Fri, 27 May 2011 07:45:00 EST Picture Frame as Dry-Erase Board http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32707_picture_frame_as_dryerase_board Let’s see—you need milk, eggs…and something to replace the stark white memo board that’s sucking all the style from your otherwise charming kitchen. Frame a pretty piece of fabric or paper, then write temporary to-dos on the glass with a dry-erase marker. <br> <em>432</em> Fri, 27 May 2011 04:07:00 EST Always rinse tub/shower at end of bathing http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32703_always_rinse_tubshower_at_end_of_bathing If you rinse shower/tub at end of every one, you will save yourself a lot of scrubbing! I still disinfect, of course, but the heavy scrubbing is much less!!! Unless, of course, you enjoy that as your exercise!! (wink) Thu, 26 May 2011 22:50:00 EST To Get Rid of Stained teacups and coffee mugs http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32689_to_get_rid_of_stained_teacups_and_coffee_mugs Fill with 1 part baking soda and 2 parts water and soak overnight; rub with a sponge and rinse.<br> <em>432</em> Thu, 26 May 2011 14:41:00 EST Cleaning the house http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32680_cleaning_the_house I love cleaning the house I feel like its good exercise Thu, 26 May 2011 11:38:00 EST Clothes with mildew http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32632_clothes_with_mildew soak clothes with mildew on them in a mixture of Wisk and water. Leave for about a 1 day or 2 if really bad and it should disappear. <em>9</em> Wed, 25 May 2011 10:40:00 EST Tube Socks as Wiper Protectors http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32615_tube_socks_as_wiper_protectors Come on¯when was the last time you wore them, anyway? Instead, slip a pair over your windshield wipers on the eve of a storm so you won’t have to deice the blades in the morning. <br> <em>432</em> Tue, 24 May 2011 22:23:00 EST Never lose a sock again http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32594_never_lose_a_sock_again Read this today on Yahoo, & had to share. One of the most frustrating aspects of doing laundry is the number of socks that suspiciously go missing. Forget putting out an APB: Simply pin each pair together before throwing it in the machine. No sorting, no matching necessary afterward. Tue, 24 May 2011 12:05:00 EST Freeze your eggs! http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32578_freeze_your_eggs My friend that has a chicken coupe let me in on a secret... You can freeze eggs! I had no idea that you could do this, and it would definitely save you money if you don't use eggs that frequently! Tue, 24 May 2011 09:13:00 EST To Clean Tarnished silverware http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32551_to_clean_tarnished_silverware Put a dab of toothpaste on a soft cloth, rub it onto the tarnish, then rinse with water and dry with a clean cloth.<br> <em>432</em> Mon, 23 May 2011 17:19:00 EST Productive Bathroom Breaks http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32546_productive_bathroom_breaks If you're drinking as much water as you should be, you're probably heading to the bathroom quite often. Before you allow yourself to sit back down in front of the TV/computer/whatever, do a quick little chore. Oh, and drink some more water. :-) Mon, 23 May 2011 14:25:00 EST To Fix a Ugly Side Table or Dresser Top http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32491_to_fix_a_ugly_side_table_or_dresser_top If you have a a nice side table but the top is messed up try taking a piece of wallpaper . Cut the wallpaper that fits the top of the table. The wallpaper stays in place by the lamp and the item you put on top. You could also put a piece of glass over the wallpaper too.<br>You can get a roll of wallpaper on sale or at garage sales for cheap.<br> <em>432</em> Sun, 22 May 2011 18:34:00 EST To Clean Piano keys http://www.sparkpeople.com/secrets.asp?tip=32460_to_clean_piano_keys Rub each key carefully with a damp cotton swab and a dollop of toothpaste. Wipe dry and buff with a clean cloth. Use plain white toothpaste (not with whiting in it).<br> <em>432</em> Sat, 21 May 2011 20:37:00 EST