As times have changed and lives have improved, folks are building houses with huge walk-in closets and buying more ‘stuff’ to fill the space. Many times, there are extra storage rooms to contain all the overflow. It’s not just clothing; people now tend to buy the very latest gadgets for themselves and their children, toys of all kinds.

I remember my brothers having two or three matchbox cars each. Today’s kids now have a suitcase full. All this stuff gets stored somewhere.

Many times double garages are filled with cars, tools, and 4-wheelers; hence, the creation of storage sheds. Sometimes there are several such sheds in the same backyard, and when the doors are open, there is barely room to walk from one end to the other.

I think that is just too much stuff.

Remember the old saying, “One man’s trash becomes another man’s treasure”? There is a lot to be said about this quote. As I plan the work ahead on a basement project, I have to move everything. As I move the barrels and totes around, I will be sorting out stuff to go to someone else.

At the moment, there are two stacks of fabric that are destined to go to others who make quilts for relief organizations as well as a pet shelter.

I’ve come to the conclusion that I will probably never finish half of the projects I’ve intended to make over the years. Some were put away 20 years ago. I will finish those that I’ve started, but the rest of it is going to be given away to someone who can use it. I know some 4-H kids that can make up the projects.

Perhaps these ‘donations’ will resurface as an award-winning exhibit at a County Fair or even a State Fair!

This Month’s Helpful Hints

Recycle Tissue Boxes
I keep an empty tissue box by my dryer and stuff the lint that comes off the clothes and gathers on the filter inside it. When spring arrives, I take the box of lint outdoors to the tree grove and break it open for the birds to use to line their nests.
(tip submitted by MJ, SD)

Baby Wipes to the Rescue
I’m in a wheel chair and can’t get in and out of a bathtub or shower without help, which I don’t often have. A kind neighbor brought me a big package of baby wipes and told me that they would clean all areas of my body. These really helped.
(tip submitted by CM, CA)

Cleanest Cat Around
I use an old damp wash rag to rub my house cat down to take off the loose hair. He doesn’t like it much, but I don’t get all ‘’hairy” if I pet him this way.
(tip submitted by MJ, SD)
(Pennywise: I tried this as soon as I got the letter. I am ‘mom’ to a 20-year-old cat who lives outside for the most part. He doesn’t have many teeth left, so I am spoiling him with canned cat food. I figure after spending most of his life here keeping mice and other critters out of the buildings and the house, it’s the least I can do for the old fellow.
He does like to be petted and also likes to sleep on an old blanket on the back of the couch. Now he can have his naps and not get the blanket all full of hair.)

Dried Out Raisins?
If you have raisins that have hardened due to the cardboard container, simply microwave them in the same box for about 20 – 30 seconds. It made them much easier to measure.
(tip submitted by AH, SD)

White Spot Remover
To remove white spots and rings (caused by a damp glass) on wood furniture, rub the spots with a thick coat of petroleum jelly, leave it for a few days and then rub off. The spots will disappear.
(tip submitted by FC, IA)

Painting Tip
When you are painting a room, put an old pair of holey socks on over your shoes. You can then quickly wipe up any paint drips without having to bend over and use a rag.
(tip submitted by KO, MN)
(Pennywise: Great idea for those of us who’s ‘bender-overs’ don’t work quite as well as they used to.)

Dying Shag Rugs
I was given some old shag rugs that belonged to a relative and decided I was going to revive them somehow.  They were so faded and awful looking.  I went to the hardware store and bought two packages of blue denim dye. Then I filled the washer with water as directed, add the dye and added the old rugs. I left them in the washer soaking for approximately 30 minutes, starting the wash cycle a couple of times to stir them around a bit, and then finally let them spin out and rinse.
I hung them on the fence (no clothesline) for a couple of days to completely dry. They look like new rugs now!
(tip submitted by VL, SD)

Disinfecting Sponges and Dishcloths
Did you know you can put damp sponges and dishcloths in the microwave and ‘cook’ for a minute on high power? I put mine on a plate and then can remove the plate with a pot holder.
They get very hot, killing all the germs.
(tip submitted by LP, MN)

That’s the scoop for this month!

-Paula