Paula Vogelgesang

Labor saver/time saver: My ceiling is quite tall and I have to use a big ladder to reach the ceiling and the tops of the walls over the windows. I was constantly having to crawl down and get my cleaning rags off of the floor because they wouldn’t stay put when I was moving the ladder from spot to spot.

My son was home from college a couple of weeks ago and soon solved my problem. He went to the hardware store and got a small towel holder that is screwed to the top of the ladder's top board. I can now hang my rags through the towel holder and I don’t drop them nearly as often as before. Sure has saved me lots of “ups and downs.” I wish it had been thought of years ago, but decided to share because it’s better late than never.

Longer lasting fruit: We found that storing bananas in a sealed plastic bag with an orange or two in a dark place actually allow the bananas to keep without getting overly ripe for quite a long time. We discovered it by accident on our drive to Arizona a few weeks ago. We kept some bananas with a couple of oranges in a zip-type bag on the floor of the back seat. Their ripeness did not change during a several day period.

Scouring pad saver: Another reader shared, “My grandmother taught me to keep my soap filled scouring pad in a dish that has about a teaspoon of baking soda in the bottom of it. The scouring pad won’t get rusty.” (Never figured out why, but it works.)

Painting hint: Angela shared, “Before I paint my wooden doors and windows, I take a small brush and put a little bit of petroleum jelly or Vaseline all over the metal window locks and around the door knobs and latches. When I am done with the painting job, I simply take a dry cloth and wipe away the paint smears on the metal because it cannot stick. Sure saves a lot of time during the cleanup process.”

Spout extension: Did you know that you can use a plain soda straw as an extender to your oil can spout? My dad uses them all the time to reach hard to get to places on motors, etc. Once in a while he will use one of them with the ‘bendy part’ on the top of the straw so he can get around a corner. We thought this might be useful to folks once in a while.

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

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