Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Storage Ideas

By Reena Nerbas

Scratched Laminate Floor

Dear Reena,

My light-colored laminate flooring has a lot of surface scratches, in a high traffic area. Is there any way to touch up these scratches so that they aren’t so noticeable rather than replacing the flooring? You can really see these scratches when the sun shines directly on the area and the floors have just been washed. Marsha

Dear Marsha,

Laminate flooring looks like wood because it is a photographic image of wood; it is then covered by a clear protective finish. Repair scratches with a wax crayon designed to cover small imperfections in laminate flooring, or purchase a laminate flooring repair kit. Depending on the color of the flooring, you may also be able to hide scratches with a color matched permanent marker. If this is not the case, consider replacing the floor plank in order for the floor to look nice again. Fortunately, this is achievable if you can color match your floor.

Cleaning Lampshades

Dear Reena,

What is the easiest way to remove dust and pet hair off lampshades?


Dear Marilyn,

The easiest way to clean lampshades is to press the dust attachment onto the vacuum nozzle and clean the shade. Another option is to wrap packing tape around your hand and press each area of the lampshade with tape. A lint roller is also very effective. Baby wipes are handy for removing marks from lampshades. Some lampshades may be cleaned in the bathtub, spray the shade with the showerhead and a bit of shampoo.

Lumpy Cheesecake

Dear Reena,

I baked a cheesecake and it looked and smelled great. However, when I removed it from the oven and ate a piece; it was lumpy. How can I prevent this in the future? Hilda

Dear Hilda,

Begin by making sure that the cream cheese is at room temperature. Beat the cream cheese by itself until smooth. After mixing the ingredients together; strain the mixture through a sieve to ensure that there are no lumps. If you still notice lumps, put the mixture into the food processor until smooth.

Scratched Porcelain Sink

Dear Reena,

I enjoy reading your helpful tips. How would you suggest getting surface “scratches” out of lovely, white porcelain kitchen sinks? I have tried; baking soda, Magic Eraser, bleach and vinegar but nothing works. The “scratches” are not penetrating; they are just on the surface (from pots and pans etc.). Look forward to anything you can suggest as they are only two years old. Thank you. Nick

Dear Nick,

Even if the scratches are not deep, they are still scratches and using a cleaner such as baking soda or vinegar will not erase the damage. You will need to purchase a porcelain repair kit from your local hardware store. With the color match epoxy mixed according to the directions and a sponge, you will likely end up with great results.

Storage Ideas:

I bought a big screw hook from a department store and fixed it under one of my cupboards. Now whenever I purchase bananas, I hang them on the screw and they don’t have to sit on the counter, they seem to last longer. Submitted By: Glenda

I purchased a wire shelf and positioned it vertically instead of horizontally. I then secured it inside one of my closets between two walls to create a fence. I now stand my wrapping paper rolls up between the shelf and the wall and they stay organized! Submitted by: Glenda

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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