Thursday, February 19, 2009

thoughts on economy

Thank heavens, I don't have to economize drastically like my mother did during the war. When I was a girl, you needed ration stamps to buy shoes and gas and even butter. (Remember the plastic bags of oleomargarine that came out then, bags with the color capsule embedded in it? It was my job to knead the bag to make the white oleo buttery yellow. I hated this chore which William never had to do.)

We're lucky to be living when men have well-paying jobs and young families can buy houses. But that doesn't mean I don't do my part to economize. A housewife may not earn money directly, but she can add to the family income by making things stretch. Like, adding Wheaties to ground meat which I did last night when I thought Don might be bringing a guest home unannounced for dinner. (False alarm.)

Here are a few other hints:

Care for black lace lingerie by washing it in a solution of one tablespoon of ammonia to one cup of coffee. (I learned this from Francine. Have no idea why it works, but it does!)

If soup is too salty, don't throw it away. A couple of pinches of brown sugar will get rid of salty taste but won't sweeten soup.

Large seashells make great candleholders. Sally and I search for pretty shells when we go visit Daddy at the Jersey shore. I put votive candles in them to light up the powder room for parties. Festive!

Freshen day-old rolls and biscuits by tying them up in a brown paper sack that you sprinkle with water and warm in the oven. The rolls will taste fresh as if they were just brought by the bread man!

Which reminds me...have to run take my (leftover from Sunday roast) beef Stroganoff out of the oven! Do you have other tips on economizing? Drop me a line.