Car Mats, Wastebaskets, Baseball Caps: Yes ... Gold-Trimmed Glassware: No! Car Mats, Wastebaskets, Baseball Caps: Yes ... Gold-Trimmed Glassware: No! Dear Mary: Twenty years ago I was lucky enough to receive a five-piece, service for 12, Spode Christmas Tree China (green band) from my mother. Since then, I have filled out …Read more. Sometimes You Just Gotta' Be Sneaky They don't call me the Queen of Costco for nothing. Truth be told, I love the place. And I buy large quantities of many items, but only because I'm also quite sneaky. I bring stuff home but then hide all but the minimal amount we need to get through …Read more. Get Paid to Donate Your Stuff If you itemize your tax return, you probably know that you are allowed to deduct the fair market value of items you donate to charity. But what's the fair market value of, say, a pair of shoes or a lamp? More than you might think. The law does not …Read more. What Do You Need to Be Happy? When a University of Michigan survey asked people what they believed would improve their quality of life, the answer given most often was, "More money." In their book "The Day America Told the Truth," James Patterson and Peter Kim asked, "If you …Read more.more articles
Where to Find Good Free Stuff
Every day, perfectly serviceable items find their way to landfills simply because they are no longer wanted or needed by their owners. And that's a shame because there are so many people who could really use the very items being cast off by others. There's a fabulous movement in this country that is matching up useable cast-offs with anxious users.
FIND FREE STUFF. The website FreeCycle.org is a great resource to find free furniture and all kinds of items in your local area. If you have usable items that you don't want or need anymore, instead of filling up the landfills, post them on FreeCycle and let someone else take the item for free! Anyone is welcome to sign up and post or to take free items. — Tamara W., email
TABLECLOTH STORAGE. My great hint for storing tablecloths is to fold them the long way and hang them from a hanger in the closet. They are easy to find and can be stored by the season. — Dawn W., email
OPENING A JAR. I have a great tip when a jar lid won't open. Put on a pair of leather gloves, grasp the jar and the lid and twist. The gloves give each hand some traction and make it easier to remove the lid. — Linda M., Pennsylvania
CHEAP TUB CLEANER. Keep a bottle of cheap shampoo on hand to clean your tub and sinks. Just spread the shampoo around, let set for half an hour or longer and then rinse when you are ready. This even cleaned up the rust-colored deposits of organic iron from our well water. — Linda H., email
BOWL COVERS. When we go on vacation, I always take the little unused shower caps home. I then keep them in a kitchen drawer, and when I have a bowl or cake pan that needs to be covered, I just use one of these little bowl "caps" and put it around the container. The elastic keeps it snug and the shower cap is puffy enough that it doesn't stick to the food. — Janet K., Iowa
NO-RUST STEEL WOOL. My steel wool pads (the kind with soap in them) were rusting before I could use them up. I discovered that when I put them in a plastic bag and put the bag in the freezer, I can use them for a longer time because they won't rust. I take a frozen pad, dip it in warm water, and then it's all ready to scrub. — B.C., South Carolina
Would you like to send a tip to Mary? You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to Everyday Cheapskate, P.O. Box 2099, Cypress, CA 90630. Include your first and last name and state. Mary Hunt is the founder of www.DebtProofLiving.com and author of 24 books, including her 2013 release "The Smart Woman's Guide to Planning for Retirement." To find out more about Mary and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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