• Purchase a large tub of cookie dough, and when you make the first batch, go ahead and portion out the remaining dough by teaspoons onto a cold cookie sheet. Freeze as balls, and then replace them in the container they came from. Refreeze. Now you can take out only as many cookies as you want to make, and cook them straight from frozen.
• “This is a tip for painting stairs. Paint every other stair. Let them dry. Then paint the other stairs. This will make your staircase useable the whole way through your paint job.” — R.L. in Michigan
• Spray old artificial flowers with hair spray to make the look fresh and vibrant.
• Many food containers can be reused to store personal items. Glass jars can be cleaned and labels removed. Paperboard boxes can be custom trimmed and covered with leftover wrapping paper or wallpaper. Paper milk cartons can be cleaned with soap and water, dried thoroughly and then painted to hold a variety of items. Don’t overlook the many possibilities in a piece of recycling or trash.
• Use plain household vinegar to kill grass that grows in the cracks of walkways and driveways.
• “Use bathroom fans appropriately. Make sure to turn them off. They vent air to the outside, and that includes your paid-for air conditioning, too. Close the bathroom door after showering and let the fan run for about 10 minutes. Then turn it off.” — D.A. in Texas
Send your tips to Now Here’s a Tip, c/ o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475 or e-mail JoAnn at firstname.lastname@example.org. (c) 2011 King Features Synd.