Mud

April showers mean lots and lots of mud, and when you have small children, they can carry a lot of it into the house and onto the floors.

Trying to keep their shoes clean and dry seems to be almost impossible at times – even if you have paved streets and sidewalks to the house.

A reader wrote with a hint to take an old laundry basket and cut it down to serve as a wet boot tray that can keep the “yuck” off the floors.

If you keep an old table knife just inside the door, kids and adults can scrape off the worst of the mud outside before stepping in the door.

I have also kept a few rags near the shoes, and the children can wipe off a lot of the wetness and mud once they get the worst scraped off. An old ice cream bucket can stash the rags, and you can take the whole thing to be washed between jumps.

Trying to dry several pairs of shoes overnight can be a chore, but folks have found that putting some of the shoes in front of the refrigerator works as a place to dry them. The fan that cools the motor of the fridge put out hot air right onto the floor, and it helps get rid of a lot of the moisture. I’ve also put them in front of the heating stove on a stool at the same level as the fan that blows hot air. When we lived in a trailer house, wet shoes would go upside-down on the heat vents.

A reader also wrote that she has used a hair dryer in an emergency when every single pair of shoes was wet. Whatever works for you!

If you have hints to share, drop Paula a line at PennyWise, Box 518, Kadoka, SD 57543-0518 or email pennywise@goldenwest.net.

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 pennywise@goldenwest.net.

Paula edits the monthly newsletter, “PennyWise,” from her family’s diversified farm and ranch operation on the edge of South Dakota’s Badlands.