March 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.


It’s better to run a partially filled dishwasher than let the dishes sit too long.

Don’t forget to clean your vent covers. A quick swish with a feather duster or vacuum brush should be all you need.


Don’t dump grease down the drain – it’s bad for the pipes – save glass jars instead & put the grease in those. Toss the jar when it’s full.

Keep tortillas warm in your slow cooker. Set the temperature to low & enjoy!

If a recipe calls for lemon pepper & you’re out, substitute half the amount with pepper.

It’s grilling season! Use your meat thermometer to be sure your grilled food is done. It eliminates the guesswork.

When buying multiples at the grocery store, check EACH one. Sometimes the wrong product ends up in the wrong spot & you get the wrong product.

There’s no nutritional difference between white & brown eggs. The color of the shell depends on the breed of chicken.

Freshly shredded cheese has more moisture than bagged cheese so it melts better & retains a more pronounced flavor.

When you’re pouring something messy, like spaghetti sauce or browned beef, pour it away from you so it doesn’t splatter your clothes.

Healthy Living

If you’re not motivated to “overhaul” your diet, just try to do a little better.

Menu Planning

If you go grocery shopping on a regular schedule & keep your pantry stocked, snow storms won’t send you on an emergency trip to the grocery store.

Can’t handle menu planning for a week? Do a couple days at a time based on what’s in your pantry.

For most people, it’s not necessary to plan breakfast & lunch. Just have foods available for those meals. But definitely plan dinner.


Keep coupons in your purse or car. They won’t do you any good at home unless you’re good about planning ahead & pulling the ones you need.

Be careful taking advantage of trial offers you have no intention of continuing because before the offer ends, you have to make a phone call to cancel it.

It’s really hard to know how much money you’re spending if you’re not keeping track & keeping track doesn’t have to be complicated.

If you write a check but don’t have time to write it in your checkbook, take a photo for later when you have time to write it down.

Having spent good money on something isn’t a good reason to hold onto it.

If you have to make a mid-week trip to the grocery store, take a list so you won’t be tempted to pick up extras you wouldn’t normally buy.

Odds & Ends

Consider sending paper birthday cards, in the mail, to those who are important to you. It means a lot.

Forget perfect! Just be better!!!

Is your welcome mat worn out? Get another one or get rid of the worn out one.

If you have a home security system, check to see if your town requires a permit. If they do & you don’t have one, the police won’t come.


When you pick up a pen & discover it’s out of ink, don’t put it back, THROW IT AWAY!

Use ice cube trays to organize little stuff – like earrings or hardware.

If an area of your house is especially messy, spend just 5 minutes at a time on it. You’ll be amazed at how much you can get done & you won’t be overwhelmed.

Don’t bother buying fancy bag clips – use old-fashioned clothespins. They’re a lot cheaper and work great!

Having spent good money on something isn’t a good reason to hold onto it.

Time Management

If you have trouble with managing time & getting places when you’re supposed to, try wearing a watch!

From Kristy at “Some people think I am smart. I am. I write everything down. That is smart.”

“Work all the time you work.  Decide what it is you should be doing, and then do nothing but that.”

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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4 thoughts on “March 2014 Tips, Tricks & Techniques

  1. Did I read that correctly? “If you don’t have time to write it in your checkbook…”? I mean, I understand what you are saying, but it takes less time to write things into the checkbook register than to write the check. I have my checkbook out and ready when I go to pay for something. I have a paperclip on the register to the current page, so I write in the check number, date, payee, and add my signature. When I have the total to be entered to the check, it is entered to the register first, then I proceed to write the check. I was taught to do things that way when I got my first checking account. No missed checks in nearly 50 years. I get it. I just don’t understand why the most logical method is not used? I guess that I have just made this a habit, but I refuse to allow “The Tyranny of The Urgent” to run my life. The people in line can wait until I am done doing what I am doing. After all, I wait in line behind other people, too. What did I miss?

    1. Here’s another perspective, Dianne.

      Most people don’t keep check registers like that anymore. They keep the information on their computer or a notebook or a piece of paper. Or they don’t keep it at all and rely on the bank. I keep my register in my planner.

      People also don’t write checks much anymore. I rarely do – only if I have no other choice. So I don’t carry a checkbook. I don’t carry a single check in my purse anymore (I used to carry a couple). When I do write a check, I’m usually at my desk. I grab a book of checks and write a check. Sometimes my planner’s laying on my desk and I write it in the register immediately. Other times it’s in another room and I don’t want to go get it. So I take a photo of the check and enter it later when I’m updating my planner.

      If you carry “spare” checks, like I used to, you won’t have a register with you. In that case, taking a photo of the check before you hand it over to someone else would be very handy. My daughter-in-law did this the other day. She bought some girl scout cookies using one of her back-up spare checks and wrote it down as soon as she got home.

      My husband writes checks occasionally and he doesn’t ever write anything down. He never has. If I could get him to take a photo of the check and text it to me, that would be awesome.

      So the way you use your checks and checkbook makes perfect sense for you. And it definitely makes sense to write it in immediately. But a lot of people don’t do it that way anymore and taking a photo could be very helpful.

  2. I write about 20 checks annually now. Most of them to the PTO for school events, and my property taxes – and that’s just because those two don’t take debit cards. So I just write the basic info on the back of the check booklet, and reconcile with my computer program weekly (usually).

    I would be very careful when snapping photos of checks. Do NOT include the row of numbers at the bottom OR your signature. Phone texting and email systems are notoriously insecure, let alone if your phone gets lost/stolen.

    Recovering from bank account fraud makes credit card theft look like a walk in the park. Your bank account is NOT automatically refundable like credit card fraud is – it takes months or even years to prove you didn’t authorize those transactions and get your money back.

  3. Bree – good comment. I actually delete the photo of the check as soon as I record it so it’s not on my phone long. I definitely don’t want to deal with identity theft issues.

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