Sunday, January 19, 2020

Things Nobody Teaches You & Other Tidbits

The older we get, my husband and I discover more and more little life improving tricks. Sometimes I call them “Duh Moments” due to how obvious they are in retrospect.

Mmm... Smell the carnations (more on this later).
For example take dental floss, of which my younger self wasted a fair amount. A few years ago I finally figured out that the ideal amount for proper teeth cleaning is just about the length of my forearm. Duh… It makes sense to get a rough measurement.

The next one was less obvious, regarding dishwasher settings. Our machine is far from new, but well advanced over what my mother used. Its option to turn off the drying cycle seemed great. Why not save electricity? Well, don’t do it, at least on a regular basis in humid Southwest Ohio. The constant moisture caused mildew buildup within that took a while for us to notice. Yuck. I now reserve that setting for rare occasions.

Don’t like drying toothpaste gunk beneath the newfangled flip-top cap? Unscrew the thing, instead. My dear man pointed that one out. Oh, and he converted this laptop to Windows 10 without incident. We didn’t have to recover a single file. Whew! His effort is much appreciated.

I, meanwhile, continue striving to exercise. Yesterday I considered getting on our NordicTrack. Then, looking around at various clutter, opted to do some tidying. I started with the kitchen before picking up things to take downstairs, especially off the hearth and mantel where I had too many tchotchkes. In case you're unfamiliar it's pronounced choch-ka(s), Yiddish for brick-a-brack (I tend to forget how regional slang tends to be). In an hour I worked up quite a sweat and felt good for neatening the downstairs a bit, as well as the main living areas.

My final tidbit is true frivolity, but also the newest idea of which I’m quite proud. Our beautiful crystal vase, a wedding gift, is way larger than I can afford to fill. While silk flowers can be nice, fresh carnations give off one of my absolute favorite fragrances. I only buy when they’re marked down, and lucked out at a $2 bunch whose petals and scent remain lovely longer than expected.

The final trick I’ll share involves flower arranging. I wanted to keep their appearance neat and stems from leaning against the glass, impossible without some sort of support (I didn’t splurge on other cut vegetation). To my pleasant surprise, a submerged shot glass fit the bill. Later, I added strands of artificial ivy, a reusable asset dressing up my fragrant display.

Surprise! The clear glass within crystal turned invisible.
But you can kind of see how it corralled the stems.
Did you know both cut and planted carnations bloom longer than nutrient gobbling roses? Do you prefer one type of flower over the other, whether in vases or gardens?



  1. Weird, but I simply cannot stand the sound of the 'snap' of the toothpaste cap, so I've been unscrewing them for awhile. Wish they made those things out of renewable materials. I've seen toothpaste tablets online, but I really need the sensitive teeth stuff.

    1. Oh, we know what you mean about sensitivity. I asked my dentist about continuing usage after reading the CYA instructions on the tube. He gave us the okay. :) Be well!

  2. My hubby and I are slow learners too :) I have always preferred carnations to roses.

  3. The best way to avoid doing something is to get busy cleaning (or straightening) the house.

  4. You are learning a lot of little life tips. Thanks for sharing them!

    1. Thank you for all the kind words of support. I really appreciate it.

  5. Well between the two flowers you mentioned I would have to say bye to the roses. I am not a fan of roses. I love sunflowers, but my fave has to be my hydrangea blooms. CRAP, as I wrote that I realized I would be moving and leaving them behind. CRAP, CRAP...I have babied them for years and years. DANG....CRAP....oh well. I will have to get some more but there again, I have some smaller ones that have come up from my bigger ones and I am thinking maybe if timing is right, digging them up and taking them with me. WOW.....Anyway moving on to dental floss, I don't like. I like the newer things that are floss on a pick like thing. I use them. I do not AIR dry in my dishwasher. CRAP...leaving that behind too. haha. We have Kroger here and if you check out the flowers they have a bunch that they mark down. I usually get some in the winter cause I don't have the blooms of outdoors, not gotten any this yr. But I love having them around so I buy the mark downs. Also, cutting the stems to different lengths makes them appear fuller in a large vase.

  6. Oh, sunflowers and hydrangea are lovely. Sad to say, our high alkaline soil is no good for the latter, nor many other beautiful plants. Azaleas are another favorite of mine. I hope you get to transplant some favorites. :) We have Kroger here, too, where I picked up those carnations. For a chain store, it's pretty good in my experience. Does your mother's home have a dishwasher? Maybe you can buy new once the ridiculous regulations are removed, making them more efficient for consumers. ~hugs~ Be well!


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