fresh laundry

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There’s no better feeling than having all the laundry caught up, folded, and put away. Thankfully, at the moment I feel pretty caught up in the laundry department.

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Rachel came over a week or so ago and helped me do some major cleaning in my laundry room, which also happens to be our dining room, so I’ve been able to maintain and slowly even make progress towards getting our little nest all ready to welcome the new little fella.

Vintage homemaking tip :: marketing

If it be practicable, get a friend in the country to procure you a quantity of lard, butter, and eggs, at the time they are cheapest, to be put down for winter use. You will be likely to get them cheaper and better than in the city market; but by all means put down your winter’s stock. Lard requires no other care than to be kept in a dry, cool place. Butter is sweetest in September and June; because food is then plenty, and not rendered bitter by frost. Pack your butter in a clean, scalded firkin, cover it with strong brine, and spread a cloth all over the top, and it will keep good until the Jews get into Grand Isle. If you happen to have a bit of salt-petre, dissolve it with the brine. Dairy-women say that butter comes more easily, and has a peculiar hardness and sweetness, if the cream is scalded and strained before it is used. The cream should stand down cellar over night, after being scalded, that it may get perfectly cold.

~ THE AMERICAN FRUGAL HOUSEWIFE by Lydia M. Child 1832

Vintage homemaking tip :: keep iron clean – part two

“From Chicago: I clean the outside of my iron with a damp paper towel and a small amount of toothpaste. Any brand works. Then I wipe it clean with another clean, damp paper towel. The iron must be cool to use this method. This method also shines the sides of the iron.”

~ 1962 Heloise’s Housekeeping Hints

Vintage homemaking tip :: overloading – a common fault

The most common fault, I found with my experiments, was overloading the washing machine. Naturally, clothes cannot swish around, if there are too many of them in the washer. You may have a ten pound capacity washer (some machines have only eight pounds) but you probably have no way to weigh the clothes. The way to test this is to fill your washing machine with water first (on top loaders) and then put your clothes in.

After the agitator starts, look in the machine to see if your clothes are swishing around and turning freely. If your clothes do not change position immediately, you have overloaded your machine and your clothes will never get really clean. Take some clothes out. Eventually, you will be able to judge without going through this procedure.

~ 1962 Heloise’s Housekeeping Hints

Vintage homemaking tip :: reach for the salt

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“When something spills or cooks over in your oven – just sprinkle salt immediately. When the oven is cool, use your pancake turner and pick up the burned pile of goop. Wipe with a damp sponge. Terrific!

I had scalloped potatoes boil over yesterday and what smoke and smell! I immediately grabbed my box of salts and poured it on the burned spill. Smoke died down, odors left, and I just kept cooking. After removing the food, I closed the oven door so that the heat would stay in the oven. Next morning, I just used my pancake turner and scraped up the awful mess.

I suggest that women should not try to clean up a mess like this when it happens. Close the oven door and let the heat finish your chores! There is always tomorrow…”

~1962 Heloise’s Housekeeping Hints

Vintage homemaking tip :: black-eyed peas

“I would like to suggest to wives who are low in their budget to buy dried black-eyed peas. They’re good, cheap, and they cook so quickly, too! Put them in water and add one chopped onion and a few slices of bacon. After they have cooked for a while add a little bit of celery salt and table salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. What a change from dried beans!”

~ 1962 Heloise’s Housekeeping Hints