Helpful tips for October 2019
In this issue:
Articles of the day
From the pages of Donna’s travel diary
Now you can subscribe to “‘Let’s Talk Tips”‘ which is my monthly resource
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informational tips available in the areas of Technology, Nutrition, Media,
Business, and Advocacy.
Courtesy of the research team at http://www.sterlingcreations.ca
Scams of the month:
If you receive an eronious email telling you that you need to pay some sort
of court fine or that you need to appear in court to pay one;
simply ignore this email.
Delete it and do not be tempted to download the attachment.
If you make the mistake to download said attachment, then you run the risk
of allowing a hacker to do damage to your system.
If you receive an email from the Royal Bank of Canada telling you that
changes have been made to your business account, simply delete it.
This is a scam and as stated above if you make the mistake to download! You
have just given the keys away to your system to an unknown hacker.
If you receive an email telling you that you need to renew your Paypal
account because it will expire in 30 days!
Another scam to simply ignore.
Here is a useful tip about honey:
Do not refidgerate.
This would lead to your honey crystalizing.
An interesting tip as to how to determine the number of pups your dog is
It is fairly simple to do this!
Just count the number of nipples that she has hanging down close to when she
is expected to give birth.
There is 1 nipple for each pup.
Dogs usually have a maternity period of about nine weeks.
A very healthy meat to eat?
Why! It is lamb and why?
Because on the whole sheep graze off of grass!
Wet hair or dry hair?
It is easier to cut dry hair!
Because it does not stick to your scissors as much as wet hair does.
How to keep the shells to your boiling eggs hard!
Here is a great tip for you.
Boil your eggs in water and tip in a tiny amount of vinigar into the water.
This will help to harden your egg shells and make it easier for you when you
go to crack your eggs.
Tails of birds?
If a bird loses its tail then not to worry;
A bird’s tail can always grow back.
They are attracted to those wearing dar coloured clothes!
If you see one and want to chase it away then do this.
Throw a bit of salt on it.
This causes the frog to run away because its skin will start to burn from
Did you also know that frogs love to eat bees?
About drinking tea or coffee before bedtime:
Probably best to do this about four hours before you retire for the night.
Articles of the day
Chosen by the Business Desk team
A Dan Thompson contribution
Unclog a Drain Yourself Without Chemicals
a. A plugged up sink, shower or tub drain sends most people running for
either a bottle of caustic drain cleaner, or a plumber’s
phone number. But wait. This could well be a job you can do yourself
without chemicals or a big bill.
Assess the situation. Turn on taps to allow water down other drains in the
house. If everything else is flowing freely, you can be
fairly certain you have a localized clog—and probably near that clogged
drain’s opening. If this is involving other drains, you could
have a bigger problem that may well require a professional. Assuming it’s
only the one drain, let’s move on.
Boiling water. Get a large pot and boil up as much water as it will hold.
Now carefully pour boiling water down the drain slowly, in
two to three stages so that the hot water can work for a few minutes in
between each pour. This is the easiest and quickest way to
unclog a drain if it works, which usually it does with a satisfying swoosh.
Reach in. Remove the strainer that is part of the drain plug, then reach
into the drain with your fingers (latex gloves would be a
good idea here) and pull out any solids. As gross as this might be, it is
often all that’s needed to clear a slow-moving or clogged
b. Zip it. If you cannot reach the clog with your fingers, your next best
friend is this cheap plastic tool,
, available at home
improvement centers or online at
This simple tool is flexible enough to allow you to push it down into the
turns of the drain. It has teeth along each side that once
you’re in and you twist it, you’ll be able to pull out all manner of drain
offenders. Keep working at it, until you pull out as much as
you can. Now run the hot water and that should clear things up nicely.
A reader introduced me to
years ago. At under five bucks, this handy dandy tool is worth its weight in
gold. It’s great to clear
drains, but also works well to
c. maintain drains before they get clogged.
Try this Wet dry vacuum.
ArmorAll AA255 Utility Wet/Dry Vacuum, 2.5 gallon,
If you have
one of these
, it just might help you to clear the drain without having to get your hands
dirty. First, set it to “wet” so it
vacuums liquids. Cover or close the drain’s vent. Make the tightest seal you
can with the hose end of the vacuum over the drain.
Get creative with duct tape or the like. With the vacuum set to its most
powerful setting, it can be powerful enough to pull that clog
right out of the drain. No guarantees here, but it’s worth a shot.
Baking soda and vinegar. Measure out 1/3 cup baking soda and get as much of
it down the drain as you can. Follow with 1/3 cup
white vinegar. It will fizz up and make quite a show. Allow it to sit for at
least an hour, or overnight if at all possible. In the morning
following with a quart or two of boiling water.
The Secret of Financially Mature People
*30 Ways to Green Your Home (and keep some greenbacks in your pocket)
1. Switch to Energy Star-rated CFL bulbs, like GHRI fave Satco’s Mini Spiral
S6202; they use 75 percent less energy and last 10
times longer than standard bulbs. You’ll knock $30 off your electric bill
for each bulb over its lifetime.
2. Plant trees around the house strategically (on the south and west sides;
shading the air-conditioning unit, if possible) to save up
to about $250 a year on cooling and heating.
3. Install dimmer switches in the living and dining rooms and three bedrooms
to dial down electricity fees about $37 a year.
4. Since 1992 legislation, all new showerheads must have a flow rate of 2.5
gallons per minute or lower. Replace your old
showerhead and save up to $45 a month for a family of four.
5. Wrap an insulation blanket around your water heater and lower its running
cost as much as 9 percent.
6. Run a full dishwasher whenever possible — it uses half or less of the
water and energy of washing the same dishes by hand.
And don’t waste water by rinsing before loading (today’s machines are
designed to power off the mess).
7. Invest in a faucet-mounted water filter for a low $30, and use refillable
bottles like our top-rated GHRI pick, the Nalgene OTG
Everyday 24-ounce bottle. By giving up bottled water, a family of four can
save about $1,250 a year.
The goal is “reduce, reuse, recycle.”
8. Magazines. Roll up a couple of these and stick one into each of your
calf- or knee-high boots so the footwear will keep its
9. Empty paper-towel roll. Flatten,and use it to sheathe a knife kept in a
10. Small glass food jars. These make perfect see-through storage vessels
for nails, screws, nuts, and bolts.
11. Old shower curtain. Stash one in your car’s trunk to line it when
carting potentially messy paints or picnic and beach gear.
12. Used coffee grounds. Spread them over flower beds of acid-craving plants
such as azaleas or rhododendrons.
13. Plastic tub. Get the largest-size container of yogurt, sour cream, or
margarine. When done with the tub, rinse and reuse it as a
travel dish for pets or for craft-supply storage.
14. Plastic gallon milk jug. Cut off top with a utility knife just above the
handle and use as a scoop for kitty litter, birdseed, etc.
15. Foam packing peanuts. Put some in the bases of potted plants to help
16. Plastic mesh produce bag. Turn it into a no-scratch scrubber for a gunky
pot or pan. Ball up the bag, scour, then throw the
whole mess away.
Good (Enough) Ways to Go Green
Switch to a front-loading washer from a top loader. In a
recent GHRI test of front loaders, they used less than half
the water traditionally used by a top loader for a full load.
Pocket up to 25 cents for every laundry load you wash in
cold water (versus hot). Cold-wash three loads a week, and
save up to $40 a year.
Install a programmable thermostat, which can save an
estimated $150 yearly if preset to cool your home’s air or
pump up the heat (such as before you get home from
Lower your heater’s temp by 2 degrees to potentially lower
your bill about $40 a year. In warm months, set the AC at
78 degrees (at 73 degrees, you’ll pay 40 percent more!).
Upgrade two toilets made before 1992 to low-flow ones,
and turn down water costs nearly $200 a year in a two-
bathroom, four-person home.
Not in the budget to replace your toilets? Try Brondell
Perfect Flush ($79), which will convert your toilet into a
dual-flush — saving about half the water and $100 per year
Always look for the ‘organic’ label on veggies and fruit,
which means that they were produced without the use of
synthetic pesticides and fertilizers.
If buying only organic is a strain on your finances, opt for
organic versions of the items known to have the highest
pesticide levels: peaches, apples, and bell peppers.
Open windows and doors or operate window or attic fans
when the weather permits. Most heating and cooling
systems do not bring fresh air into the house.
Bring home superhero plants. Certain easy-care greens
(English ivy, mums, and peace lilies) naturally help remove
indoor air pollutants like formaldehyde and benzene.
22. Do: Recycle paper with staples, clips, or spirals intact — the metal
will be filtered out by machines later. Don’t: Include any
paper with food stains (think pizza boxes), as they can contaminate a load.
23. Don’t: Forget to remove bottle caps. They’re made of a different type of
plastic and can mess up a whole batch. Do: Return
plastic bags to stores. Find a local spot at
FOR GLASS & METAL
24. Do: Rinse out bottles, jars, and cans; throw away (or recycle) caps.
Don’t: Worry about labels — they’ll burn off at the plant.
Do: Include washed pie tins and foil, metal bottle caps, wire coat hangers,
25. Permanently place a recycling box an arm’s length from your mail bin so
you can toss any remaining junk mail pronto.
27. Pay bills online, or set up automatic check paying from your bank
account. No envelopes, no
28. Buy refillable containers Spray bottles, for example, can be refilled
from larger jugs or concentrate. Over time, you’ll buy —
and dispose of — fewer containers.
29. Choose concentrated or “ultra” cleaning products, which use 50 to 60
percent less packaging than traditional formulas while
cleaning just as thoroughly.
30. Don’t use more product than the directions indicate Pouring in extra
laundry detergent or fabric softener won’t get your clothes
any cleaner or cuddlier. Instead, follow the markings as directed on the
From the pages of donna’s diary
Three important insurance policies before you travel
Trust me when I tell you that it is of vital importance for you to have
these three insurance policies up to date before you travel abroad. If you
leave any of these out then you are very easily leaving yourself open to
heartache if anything goes wrong.
So here we go.
Cancellation insurance –
This is very important to have if you need to cancel your flight in case of
Travel insurance –
You need this in case of having to deal with any unforeseen incidents along
the way. Example, if you need to cancel your trip for any unforeseen
Medical insurance –
O yes! This one you definitely need in case you fall ill in a foreign
country and you need some medical help.
Hospitalization in a foreign country could be very expensive without
There is a visitor’s insurance policy available that you may also wish to
investigate and this type of insurance may contain a combination of
cancellation, travel, and medical insurance policies.
I’m Donna J. Jodhan enjoying my travels.
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