Home & Leisure

Everyday Cheapskate: How to Get Rid of Rabbits Ruining Your Lawn and Garden

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

As adorable as these creatures are, rabbits can wreak havoc on a lawn and garden. Garden centers, home improvement stores and online resources offer commercial products to help gardeners protect their plants from rabbits.

But here's the problem: Commercial repellents are expensive; they require repeated applications; and some of them may ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Great Reader Tips: From Orajel to Stain Removers to VIP Treatment at the Store

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /


Our teenage daughter badly stubbed her toe, and we needed to clip the nail. Unfortunately, she wouldn't let us near it because of the pain. My wife found a tube of Orajel and covered the area using a cotton swab. It was like magic. It numbed the area well enough that I was able to take care of things. I would never ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Frozen Summer Treats Are Cool

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

In these sizzling days of summer, it's tempting to load up the freezer with pricey frozen treats. Or to duck into a coffee shop or juice bar to grab one of those decadent blended coffee chillers or a fruit smoothie. But the big price tags can make even the creamiest concoction or slushiest treat hard to swallow.

Giving up favorite cold treats ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How I Curb the Urge to Quit

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

I wouldn't tell just anyone what I'm about to tell you -- and I'm only telling you because we're like family. At least several times a week, I want to quit. Seriously. The thought crosses my mind, and it's not when things are going great. It's when I face a challenge: a tough writing assignment, a book deadline, an early morning interview or a ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Your Very Own Hedge Fund

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Several years ago, when gas prices were at their highest in Los Angeles, I paid $4.26 a gallon -- $102 to fill my Chevy Silverado.

As I write, at $1.97 a gallon, the cost for a full tank of regular-grade gasoline for my truck has plummeted by half to $48.

Regardless of where you live, it's likely that you're experiencing and enjoying the same ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Food Shopping: The Jarring Truth

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Why is it that the odds of going to the store for a loaf of bread and coming out with ONLY a loaf of bread are about 3 billion to one?

Food prices in the U.S. have climbed so dramatically in recent months that a stroll through the aisles of a typical supermarket is enough to kill your appetite.

It's no secret that supermarkets and grocery ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Cucumbers Galore? Enjoy Grandmother's Cucumber Salad Recipe

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Today, we celebrate cucumbers, which will soon be in the peak of their season and dirt-cheap! When prepared well, cucumbers are not only delicious but also packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Besides these two health benefits, they also promote hydration, may lower blood sugar, are low in calories and are easy to add to ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Removing Pine Sap and Other Useful Tips

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Whether it's removing pine sap from a new pair of summer shorts or keeping your drinks super cold, my readers are always anxious to share their best tips, tricks and ideas for ways to save time and money!


A cheap and safe way to remove pine tree sap from your car without damaging the finish is to rub it with a soft cloth ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How to Make Your Own Swiffer WetJet Refills

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

If you own a Swiffer WetJet Spray Mop, chances are you absolutely love it. But let me guess: You're not wild about how expensive it is to buy the refills -- the cleaning solution and disposable cleaning pads. Read on for everything you need to know about Swiffer WetJet refills!

Even more annoying, to the WetJet manufacturer, "refill" means ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Best Robot Vacuum, Ant Killer and Malfunctioning Oven

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

It's time, once again, to reach into my virtual mailbag to read what a handful of my Dear Readers have written.

Dear Mary: I need a new robot vacuum. Which one do you recommend? -- Hilda

Dear Hilda: My pick for Best Inexpensive robot vacuum goes to the Eufy Anker BoostIQ RoboVac 11S. It is super thin, which means it is not so prone to getting ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Why 15 Cents Matter

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

I used to think that small amounts of money didn't matter. What difference could $5 here or $10 there make when we were more than $100,000 in debt (not counting the house and cars)? So what if I increased our debt by such a small amount; it wouldn't really matter because we already owed so much. I used the same argument for not paying anything ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How to Roast a Cheap Cut of Beef

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

No matter how inexpensive a chuck or round roast may be, if it turns out so tough and flavorless it's passed to the dog, that purchase was no bargain.

And now, thanks to very extensive research and experimentation by Christopher Kimball as reported in Cooks Illustrated magazine, we can confidently purchase those cheaper cuts and expect perfect ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Rotisserie Chicken to the Rescue

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

If you're fresh out of ideas (let alone desire) to make one more home-cooked meal, but even the thought of another take-out or curbside pickup leaves you cold during these days of uncertainty and angst, I invite you to embrace these two words: rotisserie chicken.

Not exactly take-out, not completely home-cooked, think of a well-seasoned, ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Your Thoughts on Money and Happiness

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

In a previous column on the subject of money and happiness, I closed with: "In your heart, do you believe that more money would make you happier? How much would it take to make you really happy? Or have you discovered a source of true contentment and found it is not tied to money?"

I received many responses. Some of you sent single sentences; ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Household Clutter and What to Do About It

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

I have a theory that most of us would be more than willing to let go of the stuff that's cluttering our homes if we knew these things would serve a worthwhile cause or help someone else -- the good things, kitchen things, the highly useful possessions that we just don't use. Check out these worthwhile solutions for most households' seven biggest...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Great Reader Questions: Stains, Spiders, Candlewax and 529s

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Sometimes, it's the most unusual thing that turns out to be the magical solution for a household problem. Things like a hairdryer, a bottle of essential oil or a tube of toothpaste.

Dear Mary: We had a very bad, dark-pink 7-foot stain in our white fiberglass whirlpool bathtub from previous antifreeze winterizing. I'd tried many things to remove...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Join a CSA for Your Health and Your Wealth

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

The locally grown food movement has been gaining momentum. At the same time, the high cost of food is challenging all of us to find new ways to cut costs without sacrificing healthy eating.

Community Supported Agriculture programs, or CSAs, are popping up all over the country. Through a CSA, consumers can choose to buy shares in a local farm ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Free Doggy Poop Bags (and More Great Reader Tips!)

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

My readers come up with the greatest tips, tricks and ideas for how to save time and money every day. Today is no exception. From tomato paste to puppy poop and better space-saver bags -- fasten your seatbelts because we're about to cover a lot of frugal ground.


Many times, a recipe will call for a small amount of tomato ...Read more

Cheapskate Gourmet: Salad Dressings

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

If you think eating well means eating out -- home delivery, pickup or dining in -- you may be feeling the effects of restaurant dining in your wallet, as the cost of restaurant meals is now soaring in ways we've not seen before.

Just this week, I was shocked to read the new (disposable) menu at a small local hamburger joint in our town. The ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: 9 Ways to Wage War Against Mosquitoes -- and Win!

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Mosquitoes are nasty creatures. They bite, transmit terrible diseases to people and pets and, from what I read, have no redeeming value in the ecosystem.

Malaria, transmitted by the female mosquito, infects some 247 million people worldwide each year and, in 2018, killed 405,000 people. Mosquitoes spread yellow fever, dengue fever, Japanese ...Read more



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