Make candles last longer
photo by house of sims
Trim your candlewicks each time you use them. You’ll save money because they’ll last longer and will prevent your candles from smoking. The first tip shares a simple household tool you can use.
TRIM CANDLEWICK: Just thought I’d pass along a solution I’ve discovered for trimming candlewicks so the burned wick doesn’t fall back into the candle: a nail clipper! — Jerri R., e-mail
GAME-PIECE CRAFT: Some people who play Bingo like to glue little trinkets (such as game pieces) onto a Bingo chip. They call them “lucky” and sell them at places where Bingo is played. — H.M., Michigan
REUSE PLASTIC EASTER EGGS: Make homemade play dough, and fill the eggs for party favors. I did this one year for my daughter’s class. The kids loved it. — Andrea, West Virginia
INGREDIENT REMINDER: I’m distracted easily when baking. I used to forget to add a vital ingredient because I thought I added it already. Now I have a system. I place all of my baking ingredients on my left in the order I’m going to use them. After I’ve used it, I move it to my right. — Amanda, Indiana
POPCORN TINS: I reuse them to hold toys such as Legos, pet food or as wastebaskets. Use them to hold snacks such as chips or pretzels at a party or use one to hold Christmas lights, gift bows, craft projects, bulk rice or loose change. — Ali, forums
KETTLE CORN: I love kettle corn. So the last flea market I attended, I watched them make a batch and asked questions. I came home and tried my hand at it, and it was great and so easy.
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add one corn kernel to let you know when oil is ready. Once hot, stir in the sugar and popcorn. Cover the pan, and shake it constantly to prevent the sugar from burning. Once the popping has slowed, remove the pan from the heat and continue to shake for a few minutes until the popping has stopped. Salt to taste. — Lori, Pennsylvania
RECYCLE GIFT WRAP: Last year, while trying to find perfect color basket stuffing, I bought a bunch of tissue at the dollar store and a cheap shredder (the kind that just cuts strips, not the cross-cut kind) for $8. Now I shred my own basket and package stuffings. While wrapping Christmas presents, I kept having lots of leftover scraps. I’m not frugal enough to piece together scraps and have fashioned enough gift tags out of former-year scraps to last me a lifetime. I realized that running the wrap through the shredder would make great basket stuffing. If it is off a roll of wrap, it is already wonderfully curly, so I just cut it into eight- to 10-inch sections and run it through. If your wrap is all the same color scheme, as mine is, you can just combine it all in one bag and it is complementary. Worked great! — Shelley R., Washington