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Everyday Cheapskate: Stuffies in the Dishwasher, Plus More Great Reader Tips

Mary Hunt on

It's been such a good week, as measured by my bulging email inbox! I just love to wade through reader mail and clever money- and time-saving tips sent in by my dear readers! Enjoy this small sampling!


I wash my children's stuffed animals in the dishwasher. I run it on a normal cycle, soap and all (although I use much less soap) and then run an extra rinse cycle. I hang the little critters out to dry on the line after they have gone through the heat cycle, as they are still wet. I've only placed these precious toys on the top rack and you need to make sure their eyes and any pieces are well attached, as they can come off during their bath. -- Pam


I've read that women use mascara to cover gray hair in between touch-ups. I've found a better way -- I use Just for Men comb-in color. It works great. One tube lasts for months because I use such a small amount at a time. -- Shirley



I got this great household tip from a plumber, who happens to be my husband. Dump baking soda down the drain (this can be done with a clogged drain or to prevent the clog) and then follow with apple cider vinegar. This will loosen and eat away any gunk clogging the drains. Allow to sit overnight, then flush the drain with hot water. This is cheaper than drain cleaner and will not harm pipes or septic systems. It's also safer to have around the house with children and animals. Be your own plumber and save time and money. -- Whitney


Put a fresh head of garlic in a plastic sandwich bag and freeze. When you need garlic, just pull off the number of cloves you need and leave the rest of it in the freezer. Let the cloves sit on the counter until thawed enough to chop or press. I've stored garlic this way for years. It really does turn out just like fresh and certainly beats the already-chopped garlic you buy in a jar. -- Jean



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