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EVERYDAY CHEAPSKATE (R)- The Last Ditch Furniture Wash PDF Print E-mail
Written by MARY HUNT, Creators Syndicate   
Thursday, 24 February 2011 03:24


I have put some items through my clothes washer that were never intended for that type of cleaning, with mostly success. I figure that when it comes down to either throwing an item into the trash or giving it one lastditch effort, I'll go with the latter. I've "laundered" leather shoes, handbags, make-up bags, shower curtains and patio chair cushions. Funny, I'd never thought about washing a sofa. Until today.

OUTDOOR SOFA CLEANUP. My parents' white sofa set became dingy and spotted from water rings and cleaning stains, though it was rarely used and had been professionally cleaned. Instead of throwing it out, we decided to wash it. On a sunny day, we moved it outside, hosed it all down, soaked it with Oxyclean and then scrubbed it with laundry detergent. We left it in the sun, and at the end of the day it was completely dry and beautiful. I would never have believed this. — Lisa, California

CELL PHONE SPEAKER SYSTEM. To save money, I cancelled my land line when I became unemployed and now only have a cell phone. I didn't want to haul it around with me at home, so I purchased a baby monitor with two speakers. Now, I leave my phone next to the monitor and can hear my phone ringing anywhere in the house. The monitor does double duty because I have it placed near the television, so I can listen to the news when I'm in the kitchen or getting ready in the morning. — Mary Jo, e-mail

McCHEAP McBREAKFAST. Our family makes breakfast sandwiches faster and cheaper than the fast food places. It's easy! First, put bread or a split English muffin in the toaster. Spray a microwave-safe coffee mug or ramekin with cooking spray and break an egg into it. Scramble the egg slightly, cover the mug (I usually just use a saucer, as eggs do have a tendency to "pop") and microwave for approximately one minute. Spread bread with butter or other condiment (I like spicy mustard), and assemble the sandwich when the egg is done cooking. Even my 12-year-old can make her own breakfast without having to dirty a frying pan. — Kristen, Iowa

MULE TEAM BESTS CAT ODORS. My senior cat became confused and thought her litter box was a certain spot on my carpet. After trying four or five different treatments to no avail, I followed the directions on the side of the box of 20 Mule Team Borax for deodorizing mattresses of urine odor. The carpet is good as new after only one application! — Elaine, Pennsylvania

GIFT CARD RUNNING BALANCE. When I receive a new gift card, I write the amount on the card with a permanent marker. Then, as I use the card, I update the "amount," so I always know the balance. — Tom, Mississippi

FREEZE OUT ICE CREAM FROST. To eliminate frost from forming on the inside top of an ice cream container, store the container in the freezer upside down. — DLB, e-mail

Would you like to send a tip to Mary? You can e-mail her at mary@everydaycheapskate. com, or write to Everyday Cheapskate, P.O. Box 2135, Paramount, CA 90723. Include your first and last name and state. Mary Hunt is the founder o f and author of 18 books, including "Debt-Proof Living" and "Tiptionary 2."