dishwasher open to reveal clea dishes and utensils
Home & Family

14 Things That Should Never Go in the Dishwasher

Without a doubt, my least favorite household chore is hand washing dishes. That makes my dishwasher the one appliance I

Mary's 2013 homemade Madagascar vanilla extract
Food & Recipes, Gifts

Instant Pot Vanilla Extract—One Week from Start-to-Gift

For nearly a decade I’ve been making vanilla extract for Christmas gifts. And every year I find myself scrambling because

a chess board covered in US five dollar bills with chess pieces in play
Food & Recipes, Money and Finances

9 Easy Moves That Will Simplify Your Spending

Confused and stressed out about how to manage your money so you don’t run out before payday? Put these nine

Woman buried in cluttered closet.
Home & Family

25 Items Under $25 to Help Organize Your Life

Getting organized isn’t easy. But staying organized can be even harder. A place for everything and everything in its place. That’s

A pile of reloadable prepaid debit cards
Money and Finances

How to Use Up Every Last Cent on a Prepaid Debit Card

Some prepaid debit cards can be problematic because it’s nearly impossible to use it up to the last cent. That


This Homemade Silver Cleaner Removes Tarnish Like Magic

Happy Saturday, everyone!

If you’re thinking ahead to Thanksgiving the way I am, you too might be planning to pull

Home & Family

9 Ways You May Be Abusing Your Appliances

Is it possible that without knowing it, you’re making damaging even dangerous mistakes with your household appliances? As I have

girl in black dress and witch hat holding shopping bags, looking at camera and smiling

Savvy Shopper Tricks and Treats

Big Announcement

Since 1992, I’ve invited you, my dear readers to send me your favorite time- and money-saving tips so

14873611 - beautiful girl after bath touching her face skincare
Health and Beauty

6 Easy Spa Treatments You Can Do at Home to Pamper Yourself

If you don’t happen to have an extra hundred bucks to enjoy a day at the spa, don’t sweat it.

Health and Beauty

Finally the Mystery of Hair Conditioners Solved

Hair conditioners fall into general categories according to what they do and the problems they solve. Using the wrong product for

Best Inexpensive, Cleaning

The 3 Vacuums I Use Every Day and Absolutely Swear By

If you have hard flooring, carpet or flat surfaces in your home, which just about covers every possibility—there are three

Female hands typing on white computer keyboard

An Incredibly Easy Way to Save Money Shopping Online

With the year’s biggest shopping season now coming into clear view, it’s time to gather our wits, sharpen our resolve

Girl with blue wallet showing her pulling out $10 bill
Money and Finances

How to Spend Money without Feeling Guilty

When you give yourself an allowance, it’s more than just cash—you give yourself the freedom to spend without feeling guilty.

Ceramic Bakeware, Ovenware. Bakery Kit. Ruffled Pie Dish
Home & Family

7 Common Clutter Problems and How to Solve Them

Clutter. It’s a problem for lots of us and not because we’re slovenly or have hoarding issues. The problem is

Leftover pizza on a cardboard box layed out flat
Food & Recipes

Absolutely the Best Way to Store and Reheat Leftover Pizza

By some miracle, you ended up with more pizza than you could eat—or you intentionally ordered a larger pie just

Tulip muffin papers made from parchment paper
Food & Recipes

How to Make Tulip Muffin Cups

In a past post I gave away all my secrets when I taught you how to make muffins that are so

Emergency Preparedness Checklist with pencil
Home & Family

7 Things You Need to Do Now to Plan Ahead for Disaster

The idea of emergency preparedness is good. But just having an idea is not good enough. Every person—every family—needs a plan in

professional woman sitting at her desk, knitting
Money and Finances

The Secret to Staying Out of the Red and in the Black

When I am not writing about money-saving tactics, personal finance and consumer debt, I knit. Something about the gentle rhythm

Young kids in costume trick or treating during Halloween
Holidays and Special Occasions

10 Awesome Ways to Do Halloween on a Budget this Year

There’s no denying that we love Halloween. What other night do we get to eat, drink, and be scary? The

woman holding nose in stinky situation

A Simple Solution for Gross, Smelly Towels

If my inbox is any indicator of what’s going on in the world, and I believe it is, smelly towels

Soft serene bedroom with bed pillows

How to Get Yellow-Stained Bed Pillows White Again

This is the excerpt area. I am testing to see if this will show up instead … This is the

Cleaning, Home & Family

The Best Thing I Ever Bought

Of all the columns I’ve written, the one on the care and feeding of the carpet in my home has

jar with closed shaker top sitting on a table with a box of washing soda

10 Brilliant Ways to Use Washing Soda That Will Make Your Life Easier

It looks and feels for all the world like laundry detergent. White. Coarse. Powdery. Its real name is sodium carbonate,

Collage of ways to reuse coffee grounds
Home & Family

13 Remarkable Things You Need to Know About How to Reuse Coffee Grounds

If you love your morning cup of Joe, it’s a pretty good bet you’re throwing out spent coffee grounds on

Lots of hands up in the air indicating they have questions
Dear Mary

Ask Me Anything: Credit Reports, Storing Potatoes, Deadbeat Relatives and More!

I don’t really have a mailbag but it would be fun if I did. What I do have is a file

Money and Finances

Why You Need an Emergency Fund and How to Get It

Emergencies, I’ll bet that in your life you’ve had a few. Maybe a dead refrigerator—on Christmas Eve, with dinner guests

man walking on a tight rope
Money and Finances

How to Win the Credit Card Balance Transfer Game

There’s nothing fun about credit card debt. An outstanding balance of $5,000 that is subject to 19.99% interest means you’re

10 Surprisingly Awesome Things a Coffee Maker Can Do Besides Brew Coffee
Home & Family

10 Surprising Things a Coffee Maker Can Do Besides Brew Coffee

You might think your coffee maker is a one-trick pony—does anything smell more wonderful than a fresh-brewed pot of coffee?

Home & Family

11 Ways to Use Ordinary Pantry Items to Get Rid of Ants

Knowing how to get rid of ants around the house is important. But it’s also fun to know just how fascinating these

Young woman with killer credit score super happy with two fists in the air
Money and Finances

How to Help a Young Person Build a Good Credit Score

You can boost a young person’s credit by taking advantage of a little-known authorized user provision, but credit issuer policies

Household power strip with each outlet being used to power an electrical device
Home & Family

7 Things You Should Never Plug Into a Power Strip

Whether you live in a house, apartment, condo, mobile home or dorm room, having enough electrical outlets to handle all