As promised, I’m trying to pick up where former Tri-State Neighbor columnist Paula Vogelgesang left off, though I’ll never fill her beloved shoes.
Ways to use leftover Peeps candies: Roast those marshmallow bunnies and chicks over a campfire. Or substitute them ounce-for-ounce for the marshmallows in recipes for popcorn balls or crispy rice treats. (Be careful when mixing colors so your goodies don’t end up an unappetizing gray.)
Bags to the rescue: P.V. in Osceola County, Iowa, offered more ways to reuse the bags that line cereal and cracker boxes. Place them under the racks of fresh baked cookies, muffins, and rolls to catch crumbs. Roll out pie dough on larger liners.
“I cut them up for dividers between the pork sausage I season and shape into patties,” P.V. added. “There are many uses - and the best part is they are tossed when finished with them.”
Counting pennies: If your family tends to empty their pockets into a jar, and if you have ever taken that jar of coins to the bank, you were probably told you must count and roll the coins yourself, which takes time. Automated counting machines usually charge a fee for converting coins to bills.
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An easy, free, and timesaving way around this is to pay with coins at any store with self-checkout lanes. A few weeks ago, I used the contents of a full coin purse to buy a few groceries at the self-checkout station. I didn’t even bother to count the coins. As I dropped them into the payment cup, the machine’s display told me exactly what I had paid and what the balance was.
Take care of your spirit: This is not a hint for the house, but do you ever feel as though the reports of world events are too discouraging to absorb? The late Rev. Vernon Severson, who led South Dakota congregations in Roberts, Minnehaha and Day counties, frequently encouraged his parishioners to be “Easter people in a Good Friday world.”
When the news around us is overwhelming, writer John Eldredge advises practicing what he calls “benevolent detachment.” In his book, “Get Your Life Back: Everyday Practices for a World Gone Mad,” Eldredge says social media overloads our capacity for empathy.
We should do what we can, where we can. But we cannot fix every woe in the world, and Eldredge suggests we have to release some of it – because we are not God. “I use the word ‘benevolent’ in referring to this necessary kind of detachment because we’re not talking about cynicism or resignation,” Eldredge wrote in his blog, wildatheart.org.
Tri-State Neighbor reader H.V., who lives in southeastern South Dakota, wrote that one antidote to worry and sleeplessness is to listen to Sioux City’s FM 103.3 FM radio.
“Just a wonderful station to focus the mind on godly things rather than all trials and stress of life,” H.V. said.
If Sioux City is too far away for your receiver, you can listen to the programs over the internet at bottradionetwork.com, H.V. wrote.
I still need your help for future “Pennywise” type columns. Please send moneysaving and recycling tips to email@example.com.
Sheri Poore grew up on a Day County dairy farm and is a former Tri-State Neighbor editor now living in Sioux Falls.