Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Potatoes

By Reena Nerbas

Wrinkled Vinyl Tablecloths

Dear Reena,

When we proceeded to set the tables for our church supper we discovered that 2 of our vinyl tablecloths had been carelessly folded and put away. How do we get the wrinkles out of them? I do believe they will crack if left this way. I wondered about using a hair dryer on them or a steam iron with a damp cloth under the iron. Do you have an answer for us? Joyce

Dear Joyce,

Soak the tablecloths in the bathtub or a sink with warm water, and 1 tbsp. fabric softener or hair conditioner. Hang them to dry. Ironing the tablecloths may also work but adds more work than necessary.

Feedback from Wise Contributors

Re: Smell from wood burning stoves

The smell is likely due to negative house air pressure. The solution is to put in fresh air vents in both appliances. Also, open a window wider when drafting a wood stove but always leave it a little open. Every pound of wood requires one cubic foot of air to burn. A fire with lots of air burns cleaner and hotter. A fire burns better during a high pressure (clear sky) than a low pressure (cloudy sky precipitation soon). The actual terrain where you live can affect how your wood stove burns, and the air pressure inside. Also, every time I use the exhaust fan shower or stove I open a window (wider in the winter when the wood stove is burning). Rodney

P.S. I had a shower and opened the southeast window as I got out I smelt the unusual chimney odor. The wind was coming from the northwest and was vacuuming air out the southeast window and with the exhaust fan that changed the air pressure to be equalized by entry from the easiest point of entry. This should be avoided when burning or just after, due to C02.

Re: Repairing deep cuts in leather furniture

Read your advice to Mandy. One of the questions was – can you re-dye leather? The short answer is no but the longer answer is – you can have the leather repainted. I had this done on my BMW, seats with the color rubbed were air brushed by a pro. They looked brand new after the paint job. Did the same with an expensive living room leather chair, again looked brand new after the paint job. My car seat air brushing cost roughly $500. Tell people to call luxury car dealerships to see who they use for a good referral. Rick

This Spud’s for You

  • Have a knife with some rust spots? If you insert the knife into the potato and let it sit for a while, it will go a long way in removing the rust. Submitted by: Henry
  • I make the best stuffed potatoes you have ever tasted. My secret is to slit the potatoes a few times and microwave them for about 5 minutes. Next scoop out the potato flesh and combine with creamy alfredo sauce, cheddar cheese, chopped garlic, salt and pepper. Fill the potato skins and bake in the oven until soft. Submitted by: Dez
  • Instead of cleaning potatoes by scrubbing them with a bristled brush, I use an abrasive pad to ensure that they are very clean and free of dirt. Submitted by: Dez

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.

Reena Nerbas is a popular motivational presenter for large and small groups; check out her website: Ask a question or share a tip at

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