Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Healthy Snack


By Reena Nerbas

Cactus Fertilizer

Dear Reena,

Can you please send me an old remedy to fertilize a cactus? Betty
Dear Betty,

Cacti are hardy plants that require low nutrient care. ‘Homemade Cacti Fertilizer’ is as easy as combining 1 tbsp. Epsom salt and one gallon water. Misting plants with a spray bottle rather than pouring water into the pot is preferred. Succulents (plants with leafy tissues that conserve moisture) only need fertilizer in late spring or summer. One of the very best trade secrets for happy cacti is to add compost rich in nutrients to soil mix.

Cleaning Mirrors

Dear Reena,

The mirror attached to my dresser has a film that I cannot get off and I have tried a few things. Would the sun do this to the mirror? What should I be using? I only use water and microfiber cloths on my mirrors. Linda

Dear Linda,

It is possible that the mirror is permanently etched from the sun. However, there may be other factors such as; your water, or smokers who resided in your home (the haze may be from nicotine). In any case, here are a few solutions to try that have proven successful. Spray the mirror with shaving cream and wipe with three day old or older newspaper. Or wipe the mirror with cornstarch and water, rinse with water and dry with newspaper. Or into a spray bottle combine: 1 tsp. dish soap, one quarter cup rubbing alcohol and 2 cups vinegar. Spray mirror with contents and wipe with newspaper. Or another option; 50/50 household ammonia and water, wipe and dry with newspaper.

Restoring Leather Recliner

Hi Reena,

I have inherited a leather recliner from my aunt. I am sure that the nursing home she lived in used some sort of detergent on the chair and now everything sticks to it. Is there something I can do or use to get rid of the sticky-ness and restore the feel of the leather? It is a well-cared for and comfortable chair and I would like to keep it without recovering it. Sharron

Dear Sharron,

Restoring sticky leather is a two-step process. Step 1: Combine 1 tbsp. dish soap into 2 cups water. Wipe leather with a sponge. Rinse with water. Step 2: Using a soft cloth; apply commercial leather conditioner in a circular motion. Wait 20 minutes and using the same soft cloth, gently buff.

Skate Sharpening

Dear Reena,

My son is on the ice a few times a week for hockey training. How often should I take his skates in for sharpening? Thanks, Myron

Dear Myron,

The general rule is to sharpen skates after about 25 hours of skating. But if he walks on hard surfaces or skates on rough ice, blades will dull faster. Sharpening skates too often can reduce the life of the blades. If your son finds that he no longer grips the ice and slips or can’t properly turn, or you observe nicks in the blades, then it’s time.

Best Healthy Snack of the Week

fruit roll upBe amazed at this easy two ingredient ‘Strawberry Roll-Up’! Into a blender pour 3 cups strawberries (stems removed) and one tbsp. honey. Blend until smooth. Spread contents evenly to cover an 11×15 inch baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Bake for 2-3 hours until no longer sticky. Cool for 3 hours. Use scissors to cut parchment paper and strawberries into lengthwise strips. Roll and toss into lunches or store in an airtight container. Ready to eat? Unroll fruit, remove from parchment paper and eat!

Note: Every user assumes all risks of injury or damage resulting from the implementation of any suggestions in this column. Test all products on an inconspicuous area first.

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