Cream Of ‘Something’ Soup Mix
Condensed Cream of ‘Something’ Soup is a dry mix, so when you need some cream soup for a recipe you just add water and cook. It is much less expensive than buying the cans at the supermarket.
Mix together in a jar:
1 cup non-fat dry milk powder
¾ cup cornstarch
¼ cup bouillon powder (If you have cubes, you have to smash them up. Use whatever kind you have–beef, chicken, veggie.)
4 tablespoons dried minced onions
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried thyme (I couldn’t find thyme so I used dried parsley)
1 teaspoon pepper
For the equivalent of one can of condensed cream soup, mix 1/3 cup dry mix with 1-¼ cups water and cook until thick, then add to your recipe. If you want to add mushrooms, stir in as many as you need or want. I use about 1 cup of canned chicken in mine for cream of chicken soup.
I keep the mix in the pantry and the recipe taped to the door so I don’t lose it. This is a real dollar saver!
This hint has been around forever, but needs repeating every once in a while.
When–not if–your child gets bubble gum or any other kind of sticky mess in his or her hair, you don’t have to cut the hair off. Simply grab your jar of peanut butter and work it in, around and through the ‘gummy’ hair. There is something in peanut butter that causes the gum to break down into little rubber balls. A quick shampoo and all is well. (I’ve used this on my kids, the neighbors kids and even 4-H kids on occasion!)
Recycle Rubber Gloves
If you have access to worn out rubber gloves (some folks wear them when they do the dishes), cut off the cuff portion and then slice it into 1” wide ‘rubber bands’. They are so useful in farm shops to corral all sorts of things, like belts, hoses, etc.
My hens are working overtime, and now that Christmas is over and I don’t need to be baking all those goodies, I have eggs galore! So, I am freezing some of the excess eggs to use this summer when it’s hot and the hens don’t lay as well. I take the small sandwich freezer bags and put in as many eggs as I need for the recipes I use, anywhere from two to six eggs per bag. I break the yolks and add just a few grains of salt, squeeze out the air, seal and freeze on cookie sheets. When they are frozen solid, I put the bags of eggs in a larger freezer bag and store where I can find them in the freezer. Frozen eggs can keep for 6 to 8 months. I just take out what I need and thaw in the fridge as needed. I also freeze whites and yolks separately for the two dessert cakes I make often–12 whites to a bag for the angel food and 12 yolks to a bag for the spongecake.
Bulletin Board For Wherever You Need It
If you need a cheap bulletin board for the milk barn, farm shop, utility room or even the children’s rooms, here’s an idea from a subscriber that works really well.
Her advice: Buy a sheet of that foam insulation board at the lumber yard. Cut it into appropriate sized pieces with a sharp knife and then cover it with that sticky-backed paper that is available almost anywhere. (I found some white colored paper that has worked wonderfully well for my family in a bargain bin.) I made hangers out of wire, but a friend of mine used some lightweight chain for hers and that works too. I bought some of those erasable markers on sale, and my friend found dry-erase markers for hers. Just buy and use what you have available.
This works so well for me in the kitchen–I have four children with differing schedules. We divided the board into four sections, and each child had their own place and a different color of marker. They write down what needs to be done, and by what time (piano lessons for example) and it makes it so easy for me to check on things. –C.W., Kansas
Please The Bees
A long time subscriber writes:
With the cold weather this winter, your honey bees might need a little extra help. A normal hive should have had a good 60 pounds of honey left in it for the inhabitants, but if the winter is extra cold, that’s not enough.
You can mix half white sugar and half warm water (to dissolve the sugar), put into quart jars, punch six holes in the top of the lid with a nail and then invert the jar on an old saucer. Place near the entrance to the hive on warmer days when the bees are moving about. A hive will consume one or two gallons of this mix on a warmer day.
When spring arrives and there aren’t many flowers blooming yet, simply mix two parts of powdered sugar to one part solid vegetable shortening and mix well. Make into patties and put near the hive. If it’s not all used up after three months, just replace the patties. The shortening in the mix will kill the throat mites in the bees and the sugar will give them the needed boost to live until flower time. –F.F., California
Dust And Toss
You can make a toss away duster from sections of old newspapers. Roll together a couple of good sized sections, tie in the middle with some baler twin and use your scissors to cut deep fringes on one end and dust away. I use these in the basement and in the rafters of the barn to get down the cobwebs and dust and other debris from the critters that inhabit the outbuildings (I tied a big duster to a broom handle). I don’t like spiders crawling down my neck when I’m trying to get an orphaned calf to drink from a bottle or a pail! –A.S., North Dakota
Press ‘N Seal To The Rescue
I have had both knees and both hips replaced over the last few years and have discovered during that ‘no shower’ time after surgery, all you have to do is use Glad Press N Seal; tear off a length of it and press it over the incision site, and your bandage will stay nice and dry in the shower. I wouldn’t try it in the bathtub, but it works great in the shower. –E.E., Texas
My old pot scratcher finally bit the dust and I didn’t want to spend the $$$ for a new one. My neighbor told me to use the mesh onion bag I had just emptied. She just took it and scrunched it up into a ball and put a big heavy rubber band around it. It’s not quite as sturdy as the stainless steel one that I had, but for now it’s working great, and best of all, I’m using something I would have just tossed away. –J.C., Nebraska