April 2014 Tips, Tricks & Techniques


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In case you missed any of the daily tips posted on Facebook and Twitter, here they are on one page and grouped by category.  Enjoy.


If you can’t get control of a clutter spot in your house, consider getting rid of the spot completely (if it’s furniture) or make it impossible to pile things there.

Don’t forget to include outside areas like decks and patios on your cleaning schedule.

To freshen up my dog’s bed, I just run the vacuum over it to get rid of all the hair and dandruff. Works like a charm.

Don’t forget to clean the crumbs out of your toaster every now and then. If you don’t have time to clean it, just turn it upside down over the trash can & shake!


Don’t just record meals on your planning pages, record meal prep details like thawing meat or marinating meat or putting in crock pot.

White asparagus & green asparagus are NOT the same. The green asparagus has a sweeter flavor while the white asparagus is bitter.

When cooking, set a timer for the full amount of time the dish needs to cook & another 5 or 10 minutes earlier in case it’s done sooner.

If you need a 15-ounce can of tomato sauce but you’re out, substitute a 6-ounce can of tomato paste plus 1-1/2 cans of water.

An easy way to “crush” food like cornflakes is to put them in a zip lock bag & roll over the bag with a rolling pin. No rolling pin? Use a can.

21 graham cracker squares or 38 vanilla wafers or 21 saltine cracker squares result in 1-1/2 cups of crumbs. Now you know!

If you have leftovers you’re not going to eat in time, freeze them in individual size servings to use on a day you don’t have time to cook.

welcome matEntertaining

Buffets are a great option for entertaining when the gathering is less formal or you’re short on table space.

Home Décor/Remodeling

After a major rain storm, check your basement for leaks. Even if it’s never leaked before, there’s always a first time.


If you haven’t tried depositing checks with your smart phone, check to see if your bank offers the service. It’s awesome!!!

To stay on budget while shopping, take cash & leave your cards at home. And if you can, avoid stores that cause you problems.

Even if you don’t carry a checkbook anymore, it’s a good idea to have one or two checks in your purse or wallet – just in case!

Don’t immediately toss your receipts. If you don’t want to organize them, dump them in a box. You never know when you might need one.

medicine organizerOdds & Ends

Pay attention when you’re shopping or walking to or from your car in the parking lot. If you see anything suspicious, let someone know.

When you’re at the checkout of a store, put your phone away. It’s rude to talk on the phone while the cashier is trying to help you.

Don’t get toys for kids/grandkids that you’re not willing to play with, too. I’ve spent LOTS of time lately pushing a 4-year old in a swing.

If you wake up feeling unmotivated, don’t assume you’ll feel that way all day. Once you get up & around, you’ll probably feel better.

When you’re shopping for kid toys, don’t limit yourself to the toy aisle. My grandkids like all kinds of non-toy stuff from all over the store.



Don’t skimp when buying a kitchen trash can. You use it a LOT so get one that has features you need (like a way to hold the bag in place).

Be careful storing similar looking containers in the same space. You don’t want conditioner on your toothbrush or toothpaste in your hair.

Time Management

If you have a big project that requires a block of time (like me doing my taxes), it’s okay to let some things go temporarily in order to get it done.

“In my experience, a better way to approach your goals is to set a schedule to operate by rather than a deadline to perform by.” jamesclear.com

“Getting a few of your top tasks done is better than finishing 15 miscellaneous ones.” Time Management Ninja

If it needs to be done today, then get it done early.  Time Management Ninja.

It doesn’t matter how many tasks you complete if you’re doing the wrong ones or have them out of priority. Time Management Ninja

If you do something not on your to-do list, add it & mark it off. That gives you a record of what you did & you get to check something off.

these tips first appeared on Homemakersdaily’s Facebook and Twitter
Other monthly tips posts are available in the Tips, Tricks & Techniques Index

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Born in Kentucky, I am a wife and mom to 1 son and 2 daughters . I have an ink pen obsession, as well as a love for all things planner. I have been married for 10 years to my high school crush. I am a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

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