I love to read my mail because so much of it contains great ideas and tips from my awesome EC readers. Take a look at this small sampling and tell me if this just doesn’t make you happy, too!

DIY pet meds. Trips to the veterinarian for puppy and booster shots can be very expensive. Most reliable pet stores and grooming shops sell the medications and offer instructions so you can inject your pets at home. It is easy and cheap. You can find instructional videos online that will teach you exactly how to inject your pet. Veterinarians in my area charge from $25 to $45 for each injection. The same shots from the same manufacturers purchased from grooming shops or pet stores can be more like $5 to $10 each. It is legal in most states to administer these medications to your pet. Be sure to check yours. Tracey H.


Travel light and save. It may sound like mission impossible but if you learn to travel light with only your carry-on you will save a tremendous amount of time and money. You can ride the bus instead of hiring a cab. You won’t have to tip porters to carry all your suitcases. And if your flight is overbooked, you can volunteer to get bumped (you’ll get a voucher for a free ticket), and not worry about whether you will ever catch up with your checked luggage. Joe D.

Forget the dump method. Thankfully at my house we all help with the laundry. However I noticed that my boys used way too much detergent, filling the plastic cup enclosed in the box to overflowing. I read the box to determine the amount of detergent recommended, and noted that their plastic cup held almost twice that amount! When filled to overflowing the box would hardly wash half the number of loads indicated on the box. I replaced their cup with my own 1/3 cup dry measuring cup and now we get twice as many loads per box of detergent as before. Pat W.

Turn the hanger around. When hanging suit jackets or blazers on a commercial wooden hanger that has a curved shape, place the hanger backwards with the curved side toward you. Then hang the suit jacket or blazer facing you. Placing the hanger backwards keeps the shape of the shoulders in a sturdier tighter position and that means fewer professional pressings required. Judy G. 

Tennie tune-up. I have a 2-year-old daughter who is very hard on tennis shoes. Whenever her shoes start looking a little ragged I use 1 tablespoon of Soft Scrub cleaner on a clean smooth rag and wipe the scuff marks, chewing gum, play dough and dirt from the smooth parts of shoes. (This also works well for white cloth shoes, but not colored shoes because there is a small amount of bleach in the Soft Scrub.) I add a new pair of shoelaces and that extends the useful life of her shoes I might otherwise have discarded because they looked so shabby. Sharai K.

Quick fix for static cling. In the winter season static cling is always a problem. Keep a dryer sheet in your purse (half a sheet is plenty). When your hair gets static cling lightly stroke the ends of your hair with the dryer sheet. No more cling! Works great for skirts and trousers too. Simple run that sheet across your legs and the problem will be solved. One sheet lasts for many uses, it also smells great! Nancy M.