You will want to keep your fresh flowers fresh as long as you can after you have picked them. Here are some Heloise Hints you can take to do that:
1. Try to pick them early in the morning when they are still cool. Not during the heat of the day.
2. Be sure to strip off leaves and anything that will go beneath the water line, but keep the leaves above the water line. Note: Only the freshly cut bottom of the stems, not the shaft, absorbs water. Cut at an angle so more surface is exposed.
2. Change the water every other day and also cut of ¼ inch of the stem.
3. Never put the flower arrangement, near a heat source, like the top of the TV, or in direct sunlight.
After your family has collected lovely and delicate seashells while combing the beach, you will want to bring them home safely. Do this, if you are going home right away, but if you are staying, use these cleaning and sanitizing hints right away:
1. Gather the seashells and put into sealable plastic bags.
2. When you get home, soak the shells in water that you have added a tad (about a glug or 2 to 3 tablespoons) of household bleach. Let soak for about 20 minutes, then rinse them well and let dry.
3. Let each family member pick jars or bowls to put them into for display.
If you do not want to use commercial insect repellents, here are some Heloise Hints to make your own natural ones. Here’s how:
1. Buy citronella or lavender essential oils at a drug, grocery store or online. They act as natural repellents.
2. Combine equals part of the citronella or lavender oil with carrier oils, such as sweet or almond oil. Then dab on your skin to help keep insects away.
Note: Do not apply true undiluted essential oils directly onto your skin.
3. Fill a squirt bottle with water and some mild dishwashing detergent and keep it in the kitchen. When you see flies or gnats flying around, spritz them with it and they will be done in.
If you notice that the window of your oven is greasy and yucky that’s not surprising, but you don’t want it to linger. Here’s what to do to remove it:
1. First, let the glass cool completely. Then to clean it, wipe both sides with ammonia and let it stay on for a couple of minutes. Get a plastic scraper to remove the greasy gunk. Clean with hot soapy water, rinse and dry completely.
2. If this grease has somehow gotten between the glass, the only way it can be cleaned is to take the door apart to clean the glass and seals around it. Have a repairman come to do this job. It might be covered by your warranty.
Stainless steel looks great and has a durable finish, but it needs a special kind of cleaning, so the surface won’t be scratched. Here’s how to keep it shiny and to remove fingerprints:
1. Rinse, wipe and dry stainless steel with a clean cloth or sponge frequently to maintain the surface.
2. Never use abrasive cleaners, like steel wool or steel brushes, because they can starch the surface.
3. Don’t use any cleaning products that contain chlorine (sodium hypochlorite), which includes dishwasher detergent and other spray products.
4. Make a paste of liquid soap and baking soda to remove stains. Rub with the grain of the stainless steel. Rinse, and then wipe the surface thoroughly. Put a bit of mineral oil on a paper towel to give it a shine. Then, wipe dry.
Buy your favorite apples, which are so abundant in the summer, and transform them into a tasty, healthy, crunchy dessert. Follow this recipe. First, do not peel the apples, but rust remove the cores. Then make these fillings:
1. Cut up dried apricots and almond paste and then pack this into the apples and drizzle lemon over the top.
2. Mince almonds and gingersnaps and spoon into the apples.
3. Chop walnuts and dates together and add into the apples and then pour a bit of maple syrup over the top of them.
4. Bake apples at 475 degrees for around 45 minutes.
While sprays are convenient, they also leave a yucky mess over time, if they are not cleaned well after each use. Here’s what to do:
To get rid of baked-on cooking spray from a glass baking dish, put the dish into the sink and spray liberally with oven cleaner (used for cold oven). Allow it to stay on for a couple of minutes and then scrub well. You probably will have to repeat this several times to eliminate all the sticky stuff.
Fleas abound during the summer. And your pets that are playing and running around outdoors do become the host animal because fleas feed on their blood. Here’s how to control them:
1. Bathe and comb your pet regularly.
2. Wash pet’s bedding often to get rid of fleas that may be hanging out in it.
3. Chat with your vet about products that can be used to control fleas on your pets.
4. Check your home for fleas and vacuum carpets and upholstered furniture all the time because you do not want an infestation. If you do notice a lot of them, you may need to apply an insecticide or to contact an exterminator.
Those annoying telemarketing calls seem to come just when we are sitting down to dinner. You can do something to stop them from coming into your home. Follow these steps:
1. Add your phone number to the National Do Not Call Registry by going online to: DONOTCALL.GOV or call 1-888-382-1222. When you register online, you will get an e-mail confirmation. You must click onto the link to assure that your number is added to the registry.
2. After you number has been in the registry for 3 months, most telemarketing calls should stop.
3. Not all calls will stop because some can come from companies that you do business with. If you think these calls are fraudulent, file a complaint by calling
If you have stored books in a basement, where there might be moisture, they can acquire a mildewy smell. It’s best to store books in a dry spot, like the attic. To remove that odor, try these hints:
1.First, air out the books by fanning them open several times. Then, let them sit in the sun for a while.
2.If they still smell, sprinkle baking soda over the pages and let it stay on them for a couple of days.
3. Try this also, if you still see mildew. Place one book in a zipper plastic bag, don’t shut it, and put into the freezer to kill the mildew. Repeat with remaining books.