Archive for the ‘Kitchen Hints’ Category

Kitchen Hint: Homemade tooth-powder

Thursday, December 10th, 2015
Cinnamon bark scrolls: True cinnamon (left); Cassia (right)

Cinnamon bark scrolls: True cinnamon (left); Cassia (right)

By Catherine Haug, December 10, 2015 (photo, right, from Wikimedia Commons)

Back in 2006 when I went to Sweden and Norway, airports were checking baggage for things that could be a bomb or other destructive device. All travelers were required to use only small containers of personal care items like hand-soap, toothpaste, shampoo, mouthwash, etc., and to put them together in a small plastic bag. My tube of Tom’s of Maine toothpaste was too big, as were other items. What to do?

I decided to make my own toothpowder, but other than using baking soda (which is what my Dad had used), I had no idea what to combine. I ended up buying a tiny bottle of Eco-Dent tooth powder for the trip. I love using a powder – I find it does a better job than toothpaste. If only I had known of the recipe below, I could have made my own. (more…)

Kitchen Hint: keeping cleaning sponges fresh with real soap

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015
Kirk's Castile bar soap

Kirk’s Castile bar soap

By Catherine Haug, Sept 30, 2015 (Photo, right, from Amazon (4))

Do you use sponges in your kitchen and bathroom for cleanup jobs? Synthetic sponges tend to get rather smelly after only a few uses, even if you rinse them well. That smell comes form bacteria living in the sponge. A NSF International survey of sponges in U.S. homes found 77 percent of the sponges and dish cloths contained coliform bacteria, 86 percent had yeast and mold, and 18 percent had Staph bacteria. These are what produces the smell.

Another NSF International study in Michigan found that kitchen and bathroom sponges are the ‘germiest’ places in the home. Next in line in the study: toothbrush holders, pet bowls, kitchen sinks -especially the drains, and the coffee reservoir where you pour the water to be heated (5). What’s the best cleaner to rid these places of bad germs?

This hint is from Cat; read on for more. (more…)

Kitchen Hint: Homemade toothpaste powder

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

By Catherine Haug, September 9, 2015

This kitchen hint comes from Dr. Mercola (1). He provides two different recipes you can make with ingredients found in your kitchen or bathroom cabinet. He also provides a list of harmful ingredients found in commercial toothpaste.

When I was a small child in the early 1950s, commercial toothpaste had not yet made it to NW Montana (neither had commercial laundry detergent or dish ‘soap’). Most people ate home-cooked food, made from scratch, a diet that was good for the teeth, leaving them naturally clean. If a bit of meat or other food got stuck between the teeth, one used a toothpick. For special occasions such as a date, you used baking soda on your fingertip to clean your teeth and freshen your breath. (more…)

Kitchen Hint: Vinegar-based solution for bathroom surfaces

Saturday, February 21st, 2015

By Catherine Haug, Feb 2015

Thanks to K. Britton for this useful hint. See also her related Kitchen Hint for Pet Urine on Carpets.

I started using the Dawn/vinegar combination when my granddaughter informed me that nothing beat window washing like a Dawn-in-dishwater-strength concentration wiped onto windows and wiped off with a janatorial-grade black squeegee.

I also use Dawn-vinegar solution on bathroom surfaces such as the window, show glass and mirror, to remove calcium spots. No rinsing is needed.  Works fabulously!  The good squeegee is important; cheap ones streak.  (more…)

Kitchen Hint for Pet Urine on Carpets

Saturday, February 21st, 2015

By Catherine Haug, Feb 21, 2015

Thanks to K. Britton for this useful hint. See also her Kitchen Hint: Vinegar-based solution for bathroom surfaces.

Dog urine (or cat?) in nice plush carpet?  This works perfectly for me with my synthetic carpet.  I certainly would NOT try it with wool or other natural fibers.

I have a dog with separation anxiety, and had to do this repeatedly.  It has never failed me.  The carpet has survived beautifully.  The commercial stuff I tried is a joke and doesn’t get the urine out of the pad.

It only takes me about 15 minutes, start to finish, and has saved me from having to replace my carpet!


Avoiding, treating mosquito bites

Saturday, August 16th, 2014
From Wikimedia commons


by Catherine Haug, August 16, 2014 (Image, right, form Wikimedia Commons)

Those dreaded bugs of summer – mosquitos – can drive you crazy and almost make you long for winter. Not only do their bites itch incessantly, but they can also spread disease like encephalitis, yellow fever, malaria, West Nile virus, and dengue. What can you do? (more…)