The saying, “When the student is ready, the teacher will come,” popped into my mind this week when I received today’s first tip in my email box. I was certainly ready to learn, having just experienced the heartbreak of tossing a hopelessly spoiled head of romaine into the garbage. I hate when that happens, so you can be sure there’s now a 2-gallon sized Mason jar in my refrigerator.
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Jar the lettuce. I was having a real problem keeping lettuce from either freezing or spoiling in my fridge until a friend told me to store it in a glass canning type jar with the lid applied. That seems to work so much better than plastic bags to prolong the life of any kind of lettuce. I’m not sure why this works, but I’m so glad it does. —Louise, Oklahoma Continue reading
When I was a kid, vacation meant four kids crammed into the back seat of a sedan, poking and elbowing one another while counting the miles between rest stops.
Things have changed dramatically since then. But even with onboard DVDs, spacious minivans, air travel, cruises and theme parks, family vacations can be either delightful or disastrous. It all depends on the care you devote to research and planning.
Time and money. Quality is more important than quantity. Instead of trying to stretch your available cash over the time you can be away, consider the money you have to spend first. Then divide by a reasonable daily budget to determine how many days you can be gone. Continue reading
I want to tell you about a shocking encounter I had recently at my local Rite Aid pharmacy. But first, a little background information.
For years, my doctor has prescribed two preventive type medications. Both are generics and together they have cost me about $24 for a 30-day supply for quite a few years. Given that my health insurance at the time included prescriptions, it never dawned on me to check into the details or to search for a cheaper alternative.
I changed health insurance providers recently. My new coverage does not include prescriptions, a small matter that slipped my mind as I drove through to pick up my most recent refills. The pharmacist asked if I’d changed insurance, I said yes I had and she responded with “That will be $178, please.” What?! Once I picked my jaw up off the floor, I asked her why the price was so high. She had a long explanation about my previous insurance coverage, pharmaceuticals and the high cost of meds. I could not get home fast enough to search for a cheaper place to get these meds filled in the future. Continue reading
Given that it’s rhubarb season in most parts of the northern hemisphere, I thought now would be the perfect time to ponder ways to prepare this peculiar pie filling ingredient that some people think is a fruit, but is actually an “uncommon vegetable.”
I may be in the minority, but I think the rhubarb plant is beautiful. A member of the buckwheat family, rhubarb has big, heart-shaped, crinkled leaves and red-tinted stalks. A showy plant, rhubarb is often listed in catalogs as a must-have landscape plant.
Over the next several months, you’ll find plenty of rhubarb at your local farmers’ markets and grocery stores. Look for stalks that are firm, glossy and smooth. Select medium thickness for the best texture. The color of rhubarb indicates whether it was hothouse grown or from the field. Light pink to dark red and everything in between mean lots of flavor. Rhubarb lasts almost a week in your refrigerator if it’s wrapped in plastic and left unwashed. But remember, rhubarb’s big, green leaves are poisonous, so be sure to discard them properly. Continue reading
I have many complete sets of McDonald’s Happy Meal® toys, all of them in their original sealed packaging. How do I value this collection to sell? Stan, email
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Collecting vintage toys can be very lucrative. Happy Meal® toys are a popular collector’s item, but prices can fluctuate greatly depending on where you are selling the toys. Start by following carefully the sale of items similar to yours on eBay. By tracking the price over time, you can get a sense of the range of value your pieces may have. You might want to attend a McDonald’s Collectibles convention where you can have your collection valued, or search for an online merchant like Collector’s Connection that will give you a good idea of the value of your toys. Another option is to purchase a price guide like McDonald’s Happy Meal Toy Value Guide by Terry Losonsky. Continue reading