Monday, January 26, 2009

Household Hints From a Pro

1. If you can’t find the correct screwdriver bit, just choose one that sort of fits. It will get the job done. You might wreck the screw itself (and the screw bit) but that is a problem for another day.

2. If your kids gouge bits of paint off the walls with hockey bags (or whatever) use Wite-Out for touch-ups. It beats sanding and painting the entire area. (Available in colours other than white.)

3. If your doorbell stops working, give it at least a week before bothering to do anything about it. If it’s the same vintage as mine (the 50’s?) it will miraculously start working again on its own. And if it doesn’t, people can always knock.

4. Let a friend catch a few glimpses of the inside of your fridge. She (chances are it will be a she) might eventually and politely ask how old your bottles of salad dressing are. The shame of this will inspire you to go through the entire fridge looking for expired items. You will feel cleansed after this exercise. And if she is your best friend, she will later send you an email - “Hey, how'd you get posted on the internet so fast?! I'm pretty sure this was from your fridge,” with a link to this site. The two of you will probably have a good laugh at your expense.

5. If for some crazy reason you decide to clean behind and under the stove (say, once in a blue moon) be sure to ask your son if and when he’s going out before asking him to move the stove. Failure to do this will give you approximately one minute to tackle the brutal mess before you notice him heading out the front door leaving you with the stove in the middle of the kitchen. Holler for him to come back. He will. Have him shove the stove back. Put off the job for another day.

6. Don’t ever think it is a brilliant idea to rinse out a jar of peanut butter with boiling water left over from making a cup of tea. When you put the lid back on the jar and shake, a mixture of boiling water and peanut butter goo sprays out all over you, the sink, the counter and the backsplash. I don’t know why and I don’t plan on any future experiments in order to figure it out. Oh, yes, and while you’re cleaning up, your tea will get cold.

I actually have more helpful hints I could share but I suspect I’ve made myself look enough of a fool with the ones listed.


sherry lee said...

More more more....I've never tried #2 -- that's a MUST around here...walls don't stand a chance with hockey bags!!

She said...

You're too funny! I like # 6! I'll make sure not to do that!

Charlotta-love said...

And if you punch a hole in the wall, cover it with duct tape and paint. The wall will be softer the next time you go to punch it.

(for the record, I never did this but when I was younger, we purchased a house and the former owners had done this. There were soft spots in all the teenager rooms. I think they had some slight temper issues...)

The Bodhi Chicklet said...

Gee, I hate to laugh at your expense but...that really was funny. File under: One day we'll look back on this, laugh nervously, and change the subject. Thanks for the tip about wite-out. I'm going to troll the aisles of Staples tomorrow and see what I can find. Spring is on its way, time for a little sprucing up.

Barrie said...

Beth, thank you for the helpful tips. I just painted our office last weekend and noticed a nick in the paint. I never would have thought about the white out trick without this post! And....I'm getting offline before my tea goes cold. Although at least I'm not cleaning up peanut butter. :)

oreneta said...

The peanut butter SOUNDS like it wouldwork anyway...

Tea getting cold while doing something else? Story of my freaking life.

Beth said...

sherry lee:
More? Continuing with the hockey theme - in a pinch, hockey tape works as well as duct tape!

Glad my experience could serve as a warning. It was not a pretty sight.

Good to hear from you again!
And I wish I'd known about that trick before - there have been some holes in walls around here...

You (we) know that some day a real paint job will be necessary but what a great temporary fix!
Glad you laughed.

My pleasure - hope you enjoyed your hot cup of tea.

It did seem like an excellent idea at the time.
As for tea, I think in total I've had more tepid cups than hot. Kind of getting used to it that way.

Lainey-Paney said...

this is funny.

makes me think: avoid cleaning & just sit with a cup of tea. You'll prevent burns that way.

Memarie Lane said...

My sister tried to use a disposable plastic cup for bacon drippings and inadvertently made a coaster.

sherry lee said... oldest uses duct tape for some of the most interesting "fixes" ... the younger one goes through hockey tape like I go through tea bags!!

Dorky Dad said...

I am so going to do that boiling water-peanut butter thing as soon as somebody is awake to see it. Thanks for the hint!!

Gary said...

Thanks for all the advice :)

Casdok said...

Ive done number 1 a few times - when will i learn?!

Anonymous said...

Yeah the peanut butter thing . . . done that.

Funny how 'put off for another day' comes up more than once in your list. It's a rule I live by.

patricia said...

Eeeewwww. The peanut butter story made me cringe. Icky-poo. Better you than me! Please continue to write these tips – I may learn a thing or too.

Am seriously considering the white-out one, I must say...

We have an almost brand new doorbell. It is haunted. I can't tell you the number of times the damn thing rings when nobody is at the front door. Sometimes it gets activated even when someone is ringing a doorbell three houses down. Your doorbell sounds like the better deal.

Beth said...

Love these!!!!! heloise aint got NUTHIN onyou!!!!!

Bee said...

There is no point in cleaning behind or underneath a stove unless you are moving out of a rental home, need the deposit back, and are taking the stove with you.

Otherwise, let dust bunnies lie (I say).

My husband is perpetually bemused/despondent about the food that goes to die in the back of our refrigerator. There are always jars of lime pickle and chutney and currant jelly that I only needed once!

There's no point in wasting too much of this life cleaning.

Lisa said...

I can exactly picture my reaction if the peanut butter thing happened to me. This is why empty PB jars are handed directly to the dog, who would give anything to clean them out for me.