Taking the House by Storm

The trials and tribulations of the average gal trying to navigate through life, love and the pursuit of domestic bliss.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Shortcuts, Tips & Tricks

If I said I was always on the look out for a faster, better way to do things, I’d be lying. That would require effort, which everyone knows by now I’m rarely willing to exert. But if one happens to fall in my lap, I’m all for it – and happy to share.

So today I’m going to impart a few of the wisdoms I’ve recently picked up here and there.

During my parents’ visit, they had occasion to go to the grocery store without me. Generally speaking, I like to get paper bags. I feel they’re more environmentally friendly (probably wishful thinking) and I use them as a convenient means to store our recyclables inside before moving them to our outside bins.

My parents, however, get plastic. Once the groceries were unpacked, I did what I always do when I forget to ask for paper and threw all the bags in the garbage. They don’t recycle them within the city limits and I have no other use for them or the plastic produce bags. Or so I thought.

Long story long, my mom suggested I use the plastic grocery bags to dispose of dirty diapers near the bassinet. Makes sense. But the really clever idea: my mom uses the produce bags in her wastebaskets. This never would have occurred to me, but darned if they don’t fit perfectly into our bathroom garbage, without all the unsightly overhang the mini bags I buy from Sam’s creates. Plus, they’re free! Good idea, Mom. Thanks for the tip.

In the kitchen, I’ve got a ‘make it from scratch’ attitude when it comes to most things. However, my friend and faithful reader, Jean, turned me on to something I had no idea even existed – frozen chopped onions. What a brilliant idea! You don’t have to get your hands stinky and your eyes watery or watch your leftover onion halves rot in your fridge if too much time passes between home cooked meals. Smart thinking, Jean.

While watching Michael Cucaracha (Chiarello?) on Fine Living (now that I’m home all day, I’m continually finding new channels I never knew we had), I learned to chop up a potato and throw it into oil you’ve used to fry fish to get the fishy taste out so you can use it again. Clever, though I admit I can’t remember how long you leave it in there and whether or not you keep the fryer plugged in and hot while you’re doing it. Oh, well. Half a suggestion is better than none at all, right?

I know I had more tidbits to share, but can’t think of them right now. Guess I’ll take Mickey Goldmill’s advice and save something for the sequel.


  • At 6:47 PM, Blogger divaqueen said…

    Thanks for the nod about frozen chopped onions! I'm SO glad I discovered them because you know how I just LOVE onions! (yuck!)


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