In a few weeks, I’ll be flying to Seoul, Korea with my parents to celebrate the 70th birthday. Very much looking forward to spending the Fall weeks in one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
But until then, here are 5 tips from my syndicated column Do Just One Thing.
Have a wonderful weekend!
- Are mineral deposits in your showerhead and faucets causing clogs that force them to not function like the first day you installed them? There’s no need to uninstall them or replace them—reach for a freezer bag, rubber band and white vinegar instead. Fill the bag half full with white vinegar and submerge the showerhead in the bag; use the rubber band to secure it to the neck of the showerhead. Leave it for two hours, remove and reuse that same bag filled with vinegar for other showerheads or sink faucets. The mineral deposits will dissolve because the natural acids in vinegar work as a solvent and it’s a non-toxic way to keep them clean.
- Recent reports indicate nearly up to 40% of perfectly fresh and delicious fruits and vegetables are simply thrown away because they are too ugly. Instead of perfectly delicious produce being used to help feed people, it ends up landfilled and totally wasted. Do this one thing: overlook aesthetic beauty when choosing produce and look for the freshest and highest quality instead. When looking at irregularly shaped fruits and veggies, rely on scent to determine if it’s ripe and ready to eat. And touch your produce for skin that is firm and taut to find the tastiest of the ugliest bunch. By buying the ugliest in the bunch, produce won’t go wasted at the supermarket.
- More than $32 billion dollars worth of flower arrangements from over 15,000 local florists are sold every year in the form of congratulatory, thank you or holiday bouquets. From billions of dollars worth of arrangements come millions of glass and ceramic vases that end up stashed under the kitchen sink, in Goodwill donation bins or right into the trash can once the flowers have wilted away. If you want to find a home for your unwanted vessels, think about contacting the local florist who brought you the arrangement. Often they’ll take back the vase and reuse them to create new arrangements. It’s an easy way to reduce waste and support a local business.
- Ever wonder what to do with old metal keys you no longer need? The good news is that they are 100% recyclable since most household keys are comprised of brass with a nickel coating. All you have to do is remove any plastic covers you might have on the key and bring them to any scrap metal or recycling facility in your community and deposit them into the mixed metals bin. Old keys are recycled and melted down to make new metal products. And here’s another idea on what to do with lots of old keys: have a key fundraising drive. Ask everyone to bring old keys from their junk drawer and sell the whole lot of keys to a scrap metal dealer. Local businesses like car dealers and realtors could also done tons of keys to help you raise money, too.
- While antique and vintage furniture is the greenest way to furnish a home, sometimes you can’t find the right piece and want something new. One type of sustainable wood furniture new to market is called mango wood and it’s from the fruit bearing trees of the same name. Mango trees are fast-growing (can grow up to 100 feet in height quickly) and bear fruit for about 15 years. Once the trees stop producing fruit, they are cut down and replaced with new trees by the farmers who cultivate them. In addition to being sustainable, mango wood is stylish: it comes in beautiful natural colors ranging from blonde to a dark brown. And since they come from mango farms that quickly replenish the trees over time, mango wood furniture is affordable, too.