Heloise Hints

Heloise Hints

Heloise’s Lighter Pumpkin Bread

posted by eolsen

pumpkin breadOur Thanksgiving feasts filled with delicious and highly caloric family food favorites. Here’s a delicious fall treat—with fewer calories and one my family requests every year!

HELOISE’S LIGHTER PUMPKIN BREAD

1 2/3 cups regular or whole-wheat flour (or 1/2 each type)
Note: If you are using all whole-wheat flour the bread will be dense.
10 to 12 packets (about 2 tablespoons) artificial sweetener (the kind you can cook with) or 1 1/4 cups sugar. It’s best to use about ½ sugars and the rest sweetener so there is some bulk to the bread. If you use all artificial sweetener it will be WAY too heavy.
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 to 2 teaspoons each of allspice, ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional, see note 2)
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup salad oil
1 cup pumpkin (if you use 1/2 cup more pumpkin you’ll get a stronger flavor)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease and flour 2 small loaf pans.
2. Sift the dry ingredients and add the nuts. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, oil, and pumpkin; add to dry ingredients. Pour into the prepared pans. Bake for 50 or 60 minutes.

NOTE 1: I often use half sugar and half sweetener.
NOTE 2: You can substitute bran, wheat germ, or sesame seeds.

Makes: 2 small loaves

Drying Clothes Well and Lint-Free!

posted by eolsen

washing_machineDon’t you hate it when you take out clothes from the dryer and they are either covered in lint or dampish or crumpled up? Here are the steps to take prevent this:

1. Clean out the dryer-lint screen after (or before if others use the dryer) every load. If the lint-screen is full, the buildup can cause your dryer to take much longer to do the job and create a fire-safety problem.

2. Don’t cram the dryer to the max because clothes will come our wrinkled. Plus, it will take longer for items to dry. Sort the loads. For example, don’t put lint-makers like bath towels with lint-collectors, such as synthetics and permanent press.

3. Check pockets before you place items in the washer or dryer; remove papers or tissues or crayons because they can cause a big mess.

4. Add fabric-softeners or a sheet to help lower static electricity.

Candle Safety Reminders!

posted by eolsen

fireDuring the holidays, candles provide a lovely glow and aroma all around the house. They add such a festive ambiance for parties, BUT you have to watch them carefully, so they don’t tip over or start a fire. Be vigilant and follow these Heloise Hints:

1. Have a fire emergency plan! Each family member should know exactly what to do, if there’s a fire. Practice once or twice.
2. You really should not leave a room with candles still burning. But, it’s impractical to blow one out and relight every few minutes. So, do not leave them in a room you will not be in often! Check every 5 minutes or so.
3. Never place candles in greenery (especially dried or fake) arrangements or on the tree because they can quickly catch fire.
4. Do not arrange candles in areas where there is heavy traffic flow or where they can easily be tipped over by people or dogs! Instead, put them up higher.
5. If you have lit the fireplace during a holiday party, before you go to bed, be SURE the fire and ashes are completely out.

Reducing Stress Before a Holiday Party

posted by eolsen

thanksgiving dinner tableGetting everything ready for a holiday family gathering can be stressful. We all know that! Here are several Heloise Hints to ease the stress—get the family involved and plan ahead!

1. Start a Thanksgiving/Christmas / Hanukkah file to contain lists for guests, shopping, menus and recipes. Print out homemade invitations and e-mail photos after the event.

2. Don’t buy expensive wreaths or decorations. Make a centerpiece out of the fall bounty—leaves, grapevines, gourds and pumpkins. If you can, take a walk around your yard to see what’s available!

3. Have young ones create the table decorations, including place cards and the centerpiece. Let them help setting the table (except no fine crystal or china!) and in the kitchen afterward.

4. So you aren’t worked to death, try to clean up as you cook and go along. Let pots presoak, pick up trash and put away what has been used.

Getting Rid of Dust Mites

posted by eolsen

dustWhen you notice dust in your pillows and linens, you want to eliminate/kill them right away. Here’s how to do it successfully.

1. Wash sheets, blankets, pillows (do follow the directions for type of pillow. Foam, feather down, buckwheat) and pillowcases in hot water that’s at least 130 degrees F. Make sure it’s that hot, And then dry on hot too.

2. It may be a good idea to wash bedding once a week to be sure they are gone. Also, buy mattress, box spring and pillow covers. Be sure to vacuum and dust often.

Holiday Memory Tablecloth

posted by eolsen

thanksgiving dinnerIf you want to have a tangible lasting memory of each Thanksgiving or Christmas or other family gathering, make a memorable keepsake tablecloth, so everyone at the table can participate in creating it. Here’s how:

1. Buy a plain tablecloth and lots of permanent markers, fabric paint or liquid embroidery.

2. First, you MUST place a table pad on the table and then cover with the tablecloth.

3. During the meal, let each guest decorate the cloth with his or her name, a quote, a picture, a poem or a drawing. At the end of the meal, be sure to date it.

How to Clean Leather Furniture

posted by eolsen

couchLeather sofas and chairs can last a long time in your home, if they are cared for properly. Do not place this furniture next to a fireplace or heater on in direct sunlight. This heat will dry out the leather. Here’s how to clean and keep in beautiful:

1. Use a microfiber cloth, dampened only with tap water. Wipe over the leather and it will pick up grime and dirt. Do this regularly to prevent a build up. I give the couch a once over while I’m watching an old movie!

2. If the piece needs more cleaning. Mix a tiny bit of baby shampoo with water, about 1 teaspoon per quart of water to clean it. If you see a grease or oil stain, sprinkle a bit of cornstarch or flour over the spot and pat in to absorb the stains.

3. Never scrub or use caustic or abrasive cleaners on leather! Once it is scratched or marked, it’s not going to come out, it’s been damaged.

Bowls Sticking Together?

posted by eolsen

sinkIf you’ve stacked bowls on a shelf and not used them in a while, they can get stuck, making it difficult to get them apart. Here are the Heloise Hints how to do it without damaging them:

1. Place the stack in the sink. Fill the top bowl with ice and cold tap water. Let it sit for several minutes to cool and to contract the bowl.

2. Then place the lower bowl in warm to hot water. The heat will expand the bowl.

3. Gently attempt to pull them apart.

4. If the won’t separate, pour a little bit of baby oil between or around the edges of the top and bottom bowls. It will seep down between them and then they should separate more easily.

Holiday Cleaning!

posted by eolsen

cleaning suppliesWith so many parties and events during the holiday season, it can be hard to keep everything clean. Here are some Heloise Hints to help up spiff up your home in no time:

1. Take cleaning supplies (and cell phone) and place them in a basket and then just carry it with you to the area you want to clean.

2. When you enter a room, stand in the center and look around to see exactly needs to be cleaned. Often, top cleaning, just the surfaces, will do.

3. Don’t worry about cleaning under furniture or in cabinets, your guests won’t see the dust or dust bunnies anyway. How rude if they looked!

4. Don’t stress about having your home perfectly clean. Your guests won’t be making a white-glove inspection, but rather enjoying your company!

Need Extra Table Linens?

posted by eolsen

dinner tableIf you are having large seated dinner parties and don’t have enough tablecloths, be creative. Here are suggestions for clever sub-ins:

1. Use a lovely shawl as a table runner or nicely placed cloth.

2. A serape draped over a table will add colorful drama.

3. Extra pretty sheets can be used with placemats put on top, along with a centerpiece, and no one will know!

4. If you don’t have enough napkins for a casual or outdoor party, colorful washcloths that you can buy in stacks, can add interest to the table too.

Previous Posts

Heloise’s Lighter Pumpkin Bread
Our Thanksgiving feasts filled with delicious and highly caloric family food favorites. Here’s a delicious fall treat—with fewer calories and one my family requests every year! HELOISE'S LIGHTER PUMPKIN BREAD 1 2/3 cups regular or whole-wheat flour (or 1/2 each type) Note: If you are usin

posted 8:00:28am Nov. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Drying Clothes Well and Lint-Free!
Don’t you hate it when you take out clothes from the dryer and they are either covered in lint or dampish or crumpled up? Here are the steps to take prevent this: 1. Clean out the dryer-lint screen after (or before if others use the dryer) every load. If the lint-screen is full, the buildup can

posted 8:00:23am Nov. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Candle Safety Reminders!
During the holidays, candles provide a lovely glow and aroma all around the house. They add such a festive ambiance for parties, BUT you have to watch them carefully, so they don’t tip over or start a fire. Be vigilant and follow these Heloise Hints: 1. Have a fire emergency plan! Each family m

posted 8:00:38am Nov. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Reducing Stress Before a Holiday Party
Getting everything ready for a holiday family gathering can be stressful. We all know that! Here are several Heloise Hints to ease the stress—get the family involved and plan ahead! 1. Start a Thanksgiving/Christmas / Hanukkah file to contain lists for guests, shopping, menus and recipes. Print

posted 8:00:17am Nov. 17, 2014 | read full post »

Getting Rid of Dust Mites
When you notice dust in your pillows and linens, you want to eliminate/kill them right away. Here’s how to do it successfully. 1. Wash sheets, blankets, pillows (do follow the directions for type of pillow. Foam, feather down, buckwheat) and pillowcases in hot water that’s at least 130 degree

posted 8:00:10am Nov. 14, 2014 | read full post »


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