Diamonds aren’t indestructible. They need to be cleaned and cared for on a regular basis. To restore the sparkle in your diamond, stir up a solution of equal parts of cold water and household ammonia. Dip your diamond into the cup and soak for 30 minutes. Lift the piece out of the cup and gently tap around the mounting with an old soft-bristled toothbrush to loosen any remaining dirt. Drain the piece on a paper towel.
If your gold ring has become dingy looking, combine 1 cup warm water, 1 teaspoon dishwashing liquid and 3-4 drops of ammonia. Dip your ring into the solution and brush it with an old, soft toothbrush. Then rinse under lukewarm water and set aside on a paper towel to dry. Buff it with a lint-free cloth and your ring will look like new.
If your house has hard water and you don’t like looking at the unsightly rust-colored water stains in your sink, fight back with a dab of toothpaste. Put a little toothpaste on an old toothbrush and gently scrub the rust stain.
If your shower curtain liner is full of mildew and dirt buildup, set your washing machine for the warm water and gentle cycle. Add the liner and 1 cup of detergent. When done, throw it in the dryer on low heat and fluff for 20 minutes.
When a recipe calls for half a can of something, what do you do with the other half? It’s times like these when your ice cube trays come in handy. Fill the compartments with leftover anything… from wine to chicken stock to tomato sauce, and freeze it. Once the cubes are frozen, pop them out and transfer to a resealable plastic freezer bag. The beauty of this is that you can remove exactly what you need without having to thaw the whole bag.
Have a cake that didn’t turn out the way it is supposed to?
You can salvage it by using the cake in pieces in a trifle. Cut the cake into cubes and put half of them in a bottom of a deep, clear bowl. Then layer: fruit, pudding, more cake. Use your imagination and your broken cake will be put to good use.
Too much salt on your meat? Don’t fret. Just pour a can of cola over it. The sweetness of the cola will take out some of the excess salt and you won’t notice the mishap.
For those of you who use onion soup mix a lot, you can make your own healthier version. Here is the recipe:
½ cup dry onion flakes
1 tablespoon parsley flakes
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tsp celery salt
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
½ tsp ground pepper
2 tsp. turmeric powder (optional)
Place all ingredients in a canning jar or container with a lid. Shake to mix. Four tablespoons equals one 1-oz packet.
Gail Hochman has been a resident of Bergen County for over 30 years and has been blessed with many grandchildren.
By Gail Hochman