Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Prepare for Garden Weeds

By Reena Nerbas

Staining on Marble Floor

Dear Reena,

We moved into a house that has stains on the marble flooring in the bathroom. I’ve tried everything I can think of including professional products but nothing seems to work. Do you have any suggestions?  Thanks, Susan

Dear Susan,

There is a chance that the stains are permanent, and you may wish to contact a professional marble expert to grind the marble and restore it. The easiest DIY solutions is to make a thick paste of baking soda and water. Cover the stains with plastic wrap. Tape the edges of the plastic with masking tape. Leave for 12 hours and wipe. Or purchase an etching remover/marble restoration kit at your local hardware store.

100% Orange Juice

Dear Reena,

Part of my grocery bill each week is spent on premium orange juice. So, I want to confirm that 100% orange juice is made with oranges alone because the carton says “never any water or sugar added”. Is there anything at all added to the oranges? Simone

Dear Simone,

While many orange juice cartons/bottles claim to be 100% Pure Premium Orange Juice; manufacturers often add a chemical flavoring compound known as Ethyl butyrate to orange juice to enhance the flavor of the drink. The easiest observation of this may be done with your own simple experiment. Squeeze enough oranges into a cup to give yourself a few sips. Next pour yourself a cup of your favorite store bought orange juice. Smell the difference? When flavor packs are added to “fresh” orange juice, it gives consumers the illusion that the oranges are freshly squeezed. When compared side by side, most people notice a difference between fresh and store bought juice.

Experienced Reader’s Share

Re: Cleaning Stipple

Regarding the homeowner who wants to clean stipple in their home; I advise that they test the ceiling stipple for asbestos first, then remove it using hazardous waste protocols. Contact a professional or do it yourself (I have tested my own ceiling) Thanks, Robert

Re: Cleaning an Oven Safely and Easily

Read the concern Karen had about her negative experience cleaning her oven. I stumbled upon the perfect oven cleaner when turkey juice burned onto my oven. I used Dawn Ultra Platinum dish soap. I mixed one fourth cup of Dawn with 1 cup hot water, stirred it up and poured it onto the bottom of my oven, and let it set for about 30 minutes with the oven door closed. After 30 minutes, I took a plastic scrubber to it and the yuck came off like magic. I then mopped up the rest of the soapy water in my oven, wiped it down with a clean damp dish cloth to remove the soap residue. Environmentally friendly and doesn’t stink up the house. Sandra

Re: Icy Porch Steps

I read your tips in previous years for combatting icy porch steps. The following is a recipe that I use each year (multiple times) to prevent my steps from becoming dangerous slabs of ice. Into a gallon jug I add: 1 tbsp. rubbing alcohol, 1 tsp. Dawn dish soap and half gallon hot water. Pour the concoction onto cement. Within a few hours, ice turns to slush making the area safer for walking. Ruby

Prepare for Garden Weeds

  • I sprinkle cornmeal onto weeds to discourage them. Cornmeal is inexpensive and biodegradable. Submitted by: Sanjay
  • Boiling water is the easiest solution for killing weeds. If you want an extra strong solution, pour 50/50 boiling water and pickling vinegar onto weeds. Submitted by: Audrey
  • Choke out weeds by laying newspaper between garden rows. Cover with garden mulch or cedar wood chips. Submitted by: Caleb

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

, , , ,