Intro: Small Hacks That Might Be Useful #2
Some more small hacks that might be useful
Step 1: Communal Fridge Milk Saver
Keeping other people from stealing your milk or food can be next to impossible.
[I saw a photo of a communal fridge; someone had stuck a label on a box “I spit in this” and someone else had written underneath “So did I”. Maybe joking, but who’d want to risk it?]
I used to drink a pint of milk a day: I’d buy a pint on the way in to work and put it in the office fridge with my name on it. Oh, the times I found that my full pint had suddenly become less than full! The last straw came when I went to take my first drink of milk and found the bottle already three-quarters empty. I was not at all happy.
I’ve no idea how I came up with this solution, but … I bought some blue food colouring and put a few drops into the milk, closed the lid and swished it about to mix, then put it back in the fridge.
No one ever touched it after that.
It doesn’t change the colour of the made drink (unless you use a LOT of it! though I suppose it might a bit if you like very milky tea or coffee) and it doesn’t affect the taste. The colour is just enough to make people wary of whatever it is in that bottle. I suspect that blue and green would be the best colours to use, since they’re the “mouldy food” colours.
This only works with liquids (at least, liquids hat you don’t normally drink straight out of the bottle; I suspect that those would be safe from burglars).
I used to make my own bread, and I’d often put food colouring in the water or milk that was used in the recipe. It was just for fun, I didn’t expect to have to burglar-proof them.
But blue-and-red bread did raise some eyebrows when I got out my lunchtime sandwiches …
Step 2: Recycle Tights and Stockings Into Plant Pot Holders
Another tip that I picked up from somewhere which works for me.
Save old tights and stockings, cut them into lengths, and put plastic plant pots in them. Each size pot is kept separate, so you can find the one you want without having to sort through a pile.
And even if the wind does knock them over, they stay in one place, rather than being scattered all over the garden.
Step 3: Plant Pot Hangers
Following on from the previous …
Strings of pots can be hung handily but out of the way; fresh pots can be pulled from the bottom, and older ones popped in at the top, so they all get a chance at being used.
I’m not sure how big a pot this method can take; depends what size tights you can get hold of, I suppose! But the pantie bit is usually larger than the legs; you could cut this in half along the seam, stitch up the sides and use that for larger pots.
Step 4: Medication Clock
I have to take medication on a regular basis – not on an exact schedule [“every X hours”] but on a “no-more-than-every-x-hours” basis.
My problem was remembering when I'd took the previous ones: “was it at 3 or 4?” So I’d leave it another hour just to make sure; and then I couldn’t remember what result I’d got last time – “was it at 4 or 5?”
Finally came up with a simple solution.
1 - printable clock face and hands – there are probably hundreds of free printable dials and hands online. Just browse till you find one you like – or design your own
2 – thin card
3 – glue
4 - scissors
5 – split pin or other device to fix hands to dial but still leave them moveable
Assemble to clock and keep it with your medicines. When you take some, set the hands to that time. Then you'll know at a glance if it's okay to take the next lot.
Now my problem is: “Did I set the clock when I took my last lot of pills?”
Step 5: Shower Gel Dispenser
Put shower gel into a pump-pot soap dispenser; makes it a lot easier to get at it, rather than pick up the bottle, flip the lid, tip some gel out, flip the lid closed, put the bottle back - all with one hand cos the other's got a puddle of shower gel in it.
All you have to do is hold one hand under the nozzle, pump the handle once or twice, and hey presto, sorted.
Step 6: Half-Surgeon's Knot for Laces
Tying any sort of knot that starts with a simple overhand knot can be annoying, whether it’s gift-wrapping a parcel or your shoelaces (hence the “put your finger on that”). I discovered the Surgeon’s Knot
The extra turn on the first part of the knot holds it fast while the second part is being tied – and that doesn’t just work with sutures! Works with any kind of tie (at least, all those I’ve tried so far).
It even stands alone as a secure-ish tie – when I shop for veg, I use a half-surgeon’s knot on the plastic bag, which holds it closed until I get it home. Then I can pull it loose, so the bag is whole and reusable.