Saturday, May 17, 2008

Helpful Hints......

If found these on my Dollar Stretcher website today and thought they were worth sharing. I especially like the one about the onions, since I just had to through out a couple of them for that very reason…


As you know, onions rot if you leave them in plastic bags, and they tend to go bad when they touch other onions in a bag. Here's how to keep them longer. Take an old pair of panty hose that you don't wear any longer. Cut off one of the legs. Put an onion in the bottom of the foot. Tie a knot in the hose. Then, put in another onion and tie another knot. Keep repeating. When you're done, you can tie the onions up and hang them on a nail inside of the pantry or somewhere else. You only need to cut an onion off at a time when you need them. This works in both humid and dry climates. Mary A. in Cortaro, AZ

Preventing Garden Water Waste

It's time to set gardens again. One tip I tell friends is to recycle used water or soda bottles by cutting off the bottom and using it as a funnel in the garden. As I set out my tomato
plants (this is also good for other plants as well), I place a "funnel" in the hole too, so that when I need to water (we usually have a drought during summer), it goes directly to the
roots. I use a lot less water and I am not watering any weeds. Mary R.

Cheaper Wrapping Paper

Instead of buying boxes or using flimsy brown paper, use wallpaper to solve some of your shipping and mailing dilemmas. When I need to mail oversized books that don't fit into a manila envelope, I wrap them in wallpaper. When I don't have the right sized shipping box to send gifts to family/friends across the country, I use wallpaper to wrap and seal things that already have their own (non-packing) boxes. You can find really strong, sturdy wallpaper at thrift stores for a dollar or less. It's generally heavy weight and almost untearable, even by those machines they use at the USPS. I've never had a
package arrive damaged and the recipients almost always remark on how clever (and sometimes colorful) it is. Just attach the address on a sticky label and you're set!
Glenda in Chicago

Garage Sale Discipline

Garage sale season is upon us here again in PA after a long winter. I love to get great bargains at garage sales, but I can also end up spending more money than I should. I figure out which garage sales I will go to on the upcoming Saturday (I map it out using our local Pennysaver), then I figure out a budget. I withdraw that budgeted amount from the bank and keep it in the bank envelope that it comes in. This way, I don't have to carry my purse. Instead, I just keep the envelope in my wallet and I know how much money I have left to spend.

My 3-year-old also comes with me now to the sales and we usually take $5 out of her piggy bank for her to spend. We use the same idea, except she likes carrying around a little purse. This teaches her budgeting and how to purchase an item. We also discuss an item she may be wanting. If she says she wants something with a Disney princess on it, I let her get one item like that. Michelle in Freedom, PA

Restocking My "Gift Box"

I frequent garage sales weekly during the summer. Besides buying used clothing and furniture for my family, I stretch my budget by looking for new items. Often I can buy new kitchen or other items unused still in the box or package. I've purchased new Pampered Chef items, home decor, baby items, and clothing with tags. I store these items in my "gift box" and pull them out when I need a shower gift. I was able to buy a Pampered Chef pitcher still in the plastic and in the box for $3. I also purchased a PC food chopper new in the box for $5. This adds up to considerable savings in my gift budget. Rhonda H.
Note from Lucy: I keep a gift box too, but I usually get my items when they are on sale or marked down at a good price.

Have a great week everyone!


At 1:54 PM, Blogger Jim said...

Ditto, Lucy. I love to get bargains at garage sales.

A few more hints to make these better.
1st, wash the panty hose leg before stuffing with onions. It will be more sanitary, although nothing can cover the onion smell.
2nd, double wrap the packages. First time pretty side of the wallpaper out, the second put the plain outside for shipping.
3rd (not on it you list), be sure to check out the Kraft food mag for this month, it has some Jim kind of recipes.

Was there a class yesterday? I was in Austin for graduation (UT at Austin) of our granddaughter, all day and more than half the night.
Next week I will be in Alexandria for Mrs. Jim's family reunion.

At 9:27 PM, Blogger Putz said...

why don't you want to water yoiur weeds? did you read about my dream of a field of dandilions

At 9:30 PM, Blogger Jess said...

ok..some of you guys need to start emailing me all the smart stuff.. because apparently I have no common sense at all.... I never would have thought of any of this. How wise...really

At 9:38 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

I love that onion idea!
I also like the wallpaper idea. I've never heard of either of them, but I plan to try them both.
You asked if I've ever done anything with magnets.
No, I haven't so far. I could put magnets on the back of my crosses though. They would probably look pretty on refrigerators.

Happy Weekend, my dear frugal friend.

At 8:30 AM, Blogger Cliff said...

All good stuff. I've tried the onion thing but it is important that the hose are not in use at the time.
They look funny.

At 7:13 PM, Blogger Big Dave T said...

My dad is a big fan of estate sales. He goes to them often. Also, yard sales put on by churches often yield some good buys.

Not auctions though. Prices at auctions are often bid up higher than what the item is worth.

At 11:11 AM, Blogger Fred said...

We love garage sales. The only problem is that there are some real pros out there that get out early and get all the good bargains.

Nice tip about the envelope, too. I wonder if I can get This Mussus to try that out.

At 11:23 AM, Blogger Granny Annie said...

Shortly after Ron and I were married and I joined him at his Hermit Heaven in Kansas, I came across a drawer with packages of various sizes and colors of panty hose. For his onions, he said. It took me a while, but I did believe him finally. Yes, the panty hose are great for storing onions and the old hosiery is easy to find at most yard sales.

As always, Lucy, the hints you pass on are HELPFUL!

At 3:36 PM, Blogger Oh great One said...

Great tips!

At 6:03 PM, Blogger Putz said...

lucy you sound like my farmer friends who have had tomatoes in hot houses and now bring them out when there is no gardens don't do well and to tell you the truth i use these weid designs as a excuse whrn they don't produce like the farmers does

At 6:20 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

Nothing new at Lucy's.

I'll check back again.

At 11:44 PM, Blogger Mountain Mama said...

Thanks for the great hints. I especially want to try the onion/pantyhose one. I do garage sales too and usually find some really great bargains. I love find9ng Dr Suess books to have here to read to my great grandkids. In fact I've even done "Green Eggs and Ham overnighters, when I have several if the kids come for movies & popcorn then they all sleep in sleeping bags. In the morning I make them green eggs and ham. They love it.


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