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Helpful household tips

Please the bees: A long-time subscriber writes; with the cold weather this winter, perhaps your honey bees need a little extra help. A normal hive should have had a good 60 pounds of honey left for the inhabitants this winter, but if the winter is extra cold, that's not enough.

You can mix half white sugar and half warm water (to dissolve the sugar). Put into quart jars, punch 6 holes in the top of the lid with a nail and then invert the jar on an old saucer. Place near the entrance to the hive on warmer days when the bees are moving about. A hive will consume one or two gallons of this mix on a warmer day.

When spring arrives and there aren't many flowers blooming as yet, simply mix 2 parts of powdered sugar to 1 part solid vegetable shortening and mix well. Make into patties and put near the hive--if not all used in 3 months, replace the patties.

The shortening in the mix will kill the throat mites in the bees and the sugar will give them the needed boost to live until flower time.

Dust 'n toss: You can make a toss away duster from sections of old newspapers. Roll together a couple of good sized sections, tie in the middle with some baler twine, use your scissors to cut deep fringes on one end and dust away. I use these in the basement and attic to get down the cobwebs, nests and other debris from the 'critters' that inhabit the outbuildings. I don't like spiders down my neck when I'm trying to get an orphaned calf to drink a bottle or drink from a bucket. I tied one to a broom handle to get a large deposit of cobwebs and assorted critters from above a pen in the barn--worked great.

Frozen eggs: My hens are working overtime, and now that Christmas is over I don't need to be baking all those goodies. So, I am freezing some of the excess eggs to use this summer when they don't lay very well. I take the small sandwich sized freezer bags and put as many eggs in each one as I need for recipes--anywhere from 2 to 6 eggs. I break the yolks and add just a few grains of salt, squeeze out the air, seal and freeze on cookie sheets. When they are frozen solid, I put the bags of eggs in a larger freezer bag and store where I can find them in the freezer. Frozen eggs can keep for 6 to 8 months and I just thaw in the fridge when needed. I also freeze whites and yolks separately at times for desserts or cakes. Sponge cake for the yolks and angel food for the whites.

If you have hints or ideas to share, send them to PennyWise, Box 518, Kadoka, SD 57543; or e-mail them to If you send me your name and address, I'll send you a FREE copy of the PennyWise Newsletter. Please mention the High Plains Journal when you write.

Date: 2/18/2013


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