Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Clip It!

By Reena Nerbas

Rejuvenate Markers

Dear Reena,

Do you have any tips for how to rejuvenate Sharpie markers? Radah

Dear Radah,

Soak the tip of the marker in rubbing alcohol until you see the ink start to bleed out. Remove the marker from the alcohol, and let it sit for one hour with the cap on. Test on a scrap paper before using it on your good paper.

Storing Spaghetti Noodles

Dear Reena,

I usually purchase spaghetti noodles in bags. After the bags are open, the noodles fall in my pantry, and make a mess. Any ideas for a better way to store long noodles? May

Dear May,

Here are a few options, so that you don’t have to “noodle around” your pantry collecting the mess of fallen food. After opening the bag, fold the top and close it with a bag clip or a clothes pin. In some cases, the bag rips; several stores sell long pasta storage containers. If you like the taste of Pringles chips, eat the chips, and then clean out the container with a cloth. Store spaghetti noodles in the empty container.

Greasy Kitchen Backsplash

Dear Reena,

The tile backsplash directly behind the stove has grease marks. Any solutions? Pam

Dear Pam,

There are products on the market designed specifically for cleaning beautiful tile; here are suggestions in case you do not have access to commercial products. Begin with a combination of dish soap and water, scrub with a non-scratching abrasive cloth. Next make a paste of baking soda and 3% hydrogen peroxide, scrub with a non-scratching abrasive cloth. Worst case scenario; clean the area with household ammonia (test on an inconspicuous area first).

Feedback from Reader

Re: Soggy Apple Pie Crust

In your column about soggy apple pie, I found your advice rather odd. A soggy apple pie means the pie was baked at too low a temperature. All pies should be baked at 400 degrees or higher, so the crust will bake before the juice is able to soak in. I’ve been baking pies for 60 years, without soggy crusts. I also find that Granny Smith apples do not make good pies. Macintosh, Spartan, or Rome Beauty apples are much nicer. Apple pie should have a juicy, tender filling in a crisp, browned crust. Nobody leaves the crust from my pies! Submitted by: Edna

Clip It!

  • Instead of bag clips, I close bags of frozen food that I purchase with binder clips. That way I can clip the bags onto the wire racks in my freezer. They hang on hooks in an orderly fashion, instead of lying aimlessly at the bottom of the freezer, becoming forgotten. I also close my bags of spices with binder clips. I fashioned a rod with metal hooks in the pantry, and hang the bags of spices on the rod. Submitted by: Henry
  • Use a binder clip on the end of your toothpaste. As you empty the tube, roll it and clip it with a binder clip. Makes getting the toothpaste out a whole lot easier. Submitted by: Mary
  • I purchase packages of small, colorful, metal binder clips and then use them in many of my gift wrapping projects. I usually attach a note underneath each clip. This makes the gift look extra special. Tiny clothespins also work for this purpose. Submitted by: Mary

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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