Kit’s Helpful Tip and Hints

WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THAT? Here you will find tips and hints on all manner of things around the house and garden.  I can’t take the credit for some these tips and hints but thought they’re too good not to pass on. Equally, I would be interested and pleased to hear some of yours.

Tips of the Day

Thickly slice and dice fresh oranges or tangerines, limes and lemons and freeze ready for use in summer drinks instead of ice cubes. I freeze and store mine in resealable freezer bags.

Going on a picnic? Make up a plastic bottle of fruit squash the evening before and pop in the freezer overnight. By the time you eat your picnic, your drink will be thawed and nicely chilled ready to enjoy.


Hull strawberries easily using a straw from below.

Rubbing a walnut over scratches in your furniture will disguise dings and scrapes.

Remove crayon masterpieces from your TV or computer screen with WD40.

Stop cut apples browning in your child’s lunch box by securing with a rubber band.

 Overhaul your linen cupboard, store bed linen sets inside one of their own pillowcases and there will be no more hunting through piles for a match.

 Pump up the volume by placing your iPhone & iPod in a bowl. The concave shape amplifies the music.

 Re-use a wet-wipes container to store plastic bags.
Add this item to your beach bag.  Baby powder gets  sand off your skin easily.

Attach a Velcro strip to the wall to store soft toys.

Use wire to store gift wrap rolls in the cupboard ceiling.

Find tiny lost items like earrings by putting a stocking over the vacuum hose.

Instant cupcake carrier – cut crosses into a box lid.

How to perfectly fold a fitted sheet.

Use magnetic strips to store hair grips, tweezers and clippers behind a vanity door.

In a suitcase, store shoes inside shower caps to stop dirty soles rubbing on your clothes. You get free shower caps in just about every hotel.

A muffin pan becomes a craft caddy.  Magnets hold the plastic cups down to make them tip-resistant.

Bread tags make the perfect cord labels.

Microwave your own popcorn in a plain brown paper bag. Much healthier and cheaper than the packet stuff.

 Install a tension rod to hang your spray bottles.

Turn your muffin pan upside down, bake cookie-dough over the top and voila, you have cookie bowls for fruit or ice-cream.

Freeze Aloe Vera in ice-cube trays for soothing sunburn relief.

Create a window-box veggie patch using guttering.

And finally today:
 Use egg cartons to separate and store your Christmas decorations.

Tip: (with thanks to Larrie Beattie) An attack of the hiccups can be really distressing. The easy way to stop them is to get a teaspoonful of malt vinegar and throw it to the back of the throat. Try it next time. Sounds pretty gross but am assured it works.

Tip: Creams and lotions are expensive to buy. Whether it be make-up or suntan lotion, toothpaste or food, with tubes, it’s often difficult to squeeze the last of it out, even when using those special tube keys you can buy. You might think the tube is empty but all too often there is still a lot left inside. Try cutting the end opposite the cap off. You’d be surprised how much is still there. To protect from drying out until you’ve used the last little drop, wrap in cling film.

Tip: Can’t open that maddeningly tight lid on a jar? Then use a can opener. No, I’ve not lost the plot. Most manual can openers have a bottle opener (see illustration). Hook this under the lid and lift as if taking off a bottle cap. This will release the vacuum in the jar and allow the lid to be unscrewed in the normal way.

Tip: Want to make a cake and recipe calls for castor sugar or soft brown and you only have ordinary or demerara? Use whatever you’ve got! Sugar is sugar no matter what form, even icing sugar will work. In fact, I prefer using demerara in all my cakes and sponges, it adds to the flavour and colour too.

Tip: Does your butter go rancid in the heat yet if you keep it in the fridge it is rock hard. Instead of putting a whole block of butter out, keep only small amounts in the butter dish, say a quarter or half block. That way, it gets used quickly and the butter is always fresh. Unless, that is, you honestly prefer the oil-based concocted whips that spread straight from the fridge or you like playing games with the microwave guessing how long the butter will take to soften before melting, and melt it usually does.

Tip: Never run out of fresh milk again by always keeping several pints in the freezer. Milk freezes well. It does look yucky when frozen but returns to normal and thaws swiftly. Other than that, you may have to buy a cow.

Tip: Love cut tulips but find they always droop after a day or so. Add copper coin to the glass. For some reason I know not what, it keeps them upright. Simples.

Kitchen Tip:
Fed up with cleaning the oven floor? All those horrible burnt on bits? The smoke? The spray cleaner fumes? A pain in the proverbial to kneel on floor to clean, even worse trying to get back up? Do what I do. Place a large, cheap or past-its-best baking tray on the oven floor and leave there. Take out and wash occasionally or chuck in dishwasher every now and again. When it gets really bad, place in dustbin and buy another tray. Sorted.

5 thoughts

  1. Thanks Sylvie – when it comes to cakes I need all the tips I can get. Having said that. always thought caster sugar ‘mattered’. Mum whizzed ordinary sugar in a grinder for a couple of seconds – cheaper than buying the real stuff, but can quickly go from caster to icing!


    1. I throw in whatever sugar I have to hand. Dave prefers my sponges made with demerara instead of caster, says it tastes better, likewise I never use unsalted butter except for butter icing!


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