It’s All About Saving Time, Money and Sanity

I am convinced that readers of this Everyday Cheapskate column are the most creative at saving time, money and sanity. And there are times when saving my sanity trumps time or money. Just read this latest batch of tips, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

SLEEPY-TIME WISHES. My husband works the third shift and comes home during the day to take a nap. Usually, no one is home when he naps. On his birthday, we made him a special gift. We used a plain pillowcase and fabric markers to make his special keepsake. On the pillowcase, we wrote a birthday message, traced our hands and wrote out a special goodnight prayer. He loved sleeping on such love. — Loving wife and mother, email

WOOD FURNITURE POLISH. Homemade furniture polish is better for your wood furniture than anything you buy at the store. It polishes, cleans and protects like no commercial product can. In a sturdy container with a tight-fitting lid, combine 1/3 cup each of boiled linseed oil (you buy boiled linseed oil at the hardware store — DO NOT ATTEMPT TO BOIL IT YOURSELF), turpentine and white vinegar. Shake well. Apply with a soft cloth, and wipe completely dry with a second clean soft cloth. — Pat, Michigan

SOFTEN THE STATIC ELECTRICITY. I found a practical solution for the static electricity problem that accompanies dry winter weather and causes little electrical shocks when walking on carpet. Add a tablespoon or two of liquid fabric softener into a spray bottle. Fill with water. Shake well and lightly spray over all carpeted areas. This eliminates the static electricity and makes the house smell wonderful, too. — Pam, Wisconsin

ALL-STAR COUPON LINEUP. I use a three-ring binder and plastic baseball card holders to file my coupons. I also arrange the order of my coupons according to the layout of my favorite store. Coupons are folded and put into the cardholders so the expiration date and pertinent information is visible. The binder fits nicely into the front of the shopping basket. — N.S., email

WINTER HAND SCRUB. For a great scrub for dry hands, remove rings and put 1/2 teaspoon of Vaseline in your palm, along with 1/2 teaspoon of sugar. Rub hands together for at least a minute. Be sure to rub the backs of your hands as well as between your fingers. Rinse with warm water and soap. Finish up with your favorite hand lotion. You will marvel at your soft, smooth hands. Works well on elbows and feet, too. — No name, email

CLOTHESPINS SEAL THE DEAL. I’ve never been a fan of twist-ties. A great alternative is the simple clothespin. I use them to “clothes” off bread bags, bags of spices, bags of chips and so on. There are always a few clothespins in my junk drawer, but I’m seriously considering moving them to the utensil drawer where they’ll get more respect! — NOS, email

Would you like to send a tip to Mary? You can email her at, or write to Everyday Cheapskate, P.O. Box 2099, Cypress, CA 90630. Include your first and last name and state. Mary Hunt is the founder of and author of 23 books, including her January 2013 release “Cheaper, Better, Faster: Over 2,000 Tips and Tricks to Save You Time and Money Every Day.” To find out more about Mary and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at