Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Supposed solution kicks up the dust

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QUESTION: I received a commercial duster for Christmas this year. I had seen it advertised on television and it looked like a good cleaning tool. But I am wondering how well it cleans. Do you think that commercial dusters hold onto dust and help clean as well as they say? Love your presentations; hope you come to my area again soon. Betty (Dominion City, MB)

ANSWER: Instead of me giving you my opinion, you can do the following test and determine your own result. Allow something in your home to collect dust for a few weeks. Carry the item over to the window that allows in the most sunshine. As you dust, observe whether or not dust is flying freely or actually clinging to the duster.

Okay fine, let me tell you what happened when I did this. As great as the duster looked on TV, the dust flew everywhere and only some of it clung to the commercial duster. Next time, I will dust first and vacuum last to pick-up all of the dust that landed on the floor. Vacuum attachments and good quality micro fiber clothes are powerful tools for actually getting rid of dust.

QUESTION: Can you suggest what I can do regarding my toilet bowl? It has a layer of what I describe as "calcium deposits" meaning above the water line the surface feels hard and is slightly discolored, the other toilet bowl in our house, does not have this. I am thinking the reason for the other toilet bowl being free of this is because it is flushed far more often than the one with this deposit. I have tried sprays and cleaners to no avail. Would appreciate any suggestions. Glen, Winnipeg

ANSWER: To remove stains in a toilet, purchase a pumice stone and lubricate it with either cheap shampoo or dish soap. Wet the stone and gently wipe the toilet rim to remove marks being careful not to scratch the porcelain.

Did you know? According to the Southern Nevada Water Authority, toilets consume about 25 per cent of water inside a home.

QUESTION: I am going on a winter camping trip with my grandchildren who can't stand being outside. I want a treat idea that would be fun to make outside during the trip, maybe this will get them excited about the good 'ol days. Do you have a yummy recipe? Velma (Brandon, MB)

ANSWER: I've got two words for you, Chocolate Brownies! All you need for this recipe are a few ingredients, plastic bags and water. Into a sandwich bag put: One crumbled sleeve of graham wafer crackers, one quarter cup of your favorite chopped nuts i.e. walnuts or pecans and 2 tbsp. icing sugar. Into a different large sealable bag combine: One quarter cup water, three quarter cups chocolate chips (yum) and three tbsp. dry milk. Over the fire, simmer a little pot of water. Remove from heat and dip the sealed chocolate bag into the pot of water. When the chocolate has melted add the ingredients from the first bag. Combine and knead. Eat warm or cool and enjoy brownie chunks!

I enjoy your questions and tips, keep them coming. Missed a column? Can't remember a solution? Need a speaker for an upcoming event? Check out my brand new videos/blog/website:!

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 4, 2014 F2

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