Fall is a time many of us give up on grilling season because of work and school activities that take the time we used to spend cooking out doors.
That grill needs a good cleaning before you store it away in the garage for the winter. A reader from Colorado wrote in with a tip:
“Put your black and caked up grill into a large plastic garbage bag and pour in 1 cup of household ammonia, undiluted.
“Seal the bag up tight and leave it out in a place where there is direct sunlight for a whole day.
“The ammonia will soften the gunk, even on the grill top. Then you can simply hose the whole works off with a garden hose sprayer. Just use a corner of the yard where the grease won’t bother anything.
“If there are a few tough places, one of the grill brushes will take it off in a jiffy, and you will have a “new to you” grill to put away this winter.
A South Dakota reader had a food-saving tip:
“Save those gallon plastic milk jugs or obtain some from a neighbor. Wash them well and fill them with water to freeze.
“If you need ice for a cooler full of drinks, this is just perfect because you will not have water dripping when you take a can or bottle out of the cooler.
“I freeze a lot of them in the fall of the year because this is when we get our meat for winter. If and when the electricity goes off, I don’t have to worry about all the food thawing out for a few days. It’s also a good source of water when the power is out, and it’s a lot cheaper than buying blocks and bags of ice at the store.
A while back, a reader wrote this about a cheap storage solution for yarn:
“If you are one who crochets or knits, you will have yarn – and sometimes a lot of it. I used to store mine on a closet shelf, but it kept getting knocked off and ended up on the floor.
“A friend told me to go to the grocery store and ask them for a couple of boxes that syrup comes in. It has cardboard dividers between the bottles. Some of them have up to 24 dividers, though most are for 12.
“They work great! I can see what color I want to use without having to go through the whole bag, and they stay nice and clean.
“Plus, I can store the box on the closet shelf. Of course, I had to write on the outside of the box what was in it, as there are several boxes of “stuff” on the shelves.
A Minnesota reader sent this tip for preventing scuffed doors:
To eliminate those black toe marks and scuffs on the bottom of your outside doors, you can purchase a rubber stair tread at a hardware store or even a furniture store and glue it to the bottom of the door. If you use a heavy epoxy-type glue to fasten it to the door, it will hold for years.
Paula edits the monthly newsletter, “PennyWise,” from her family’s diversified farm and ranch operation on the edge of South Dakota’s Badlands. If you have hints to share, drop Paula a line at PennyWise, Box 518, Kadoka, SD 57543-0518 or email email@example.com.