Quips and Quotes
"We do not earn or merit anything by taking refuge in God. Hiding in something makes no contribution to the hiding place. All it does is show that we regard ourselves as helpless and the hiding place as a place of rescue." John Piper

Friday, October 31, 2008

Thinking Biblically About Homosexuality

This theme has so been upon my mind, that I would like to address it here from several different Biblical angles. Following are eight Biblical truths that I have been mulling around in my mind. These are truths we need to remember as we face the ever-increasing tide for society to not only accept, but also celebrate, homosexuality as a normal and moral sexual appetite and lifestyle.

1. The Christian's struggle is not against flesh and blood (other men and women), but against the powers of darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12). Homosexuals are not the enemy.

2. The current surge to define homosexuality as a relationship worthy of the sacred union of marriage should be a wake-up call to the church to pray for revival, that God would pour out His mercy and grace in salvation upon the individuals who are enslaved to this lifestyle that is a deviation from God's design (2 Chronicles 7:14).

3. The current trends in our country that are leading to the dissolving of religious freedoms in favor of allowing sexual freedoms are just the natural outcome of a society bent on removing God from their corporate conscience (Romans 1:18-32).

4. Homosexuality is not an unforgivable sin, nor is it a greater sin than any other sin. Jesus died for and actually redeems those caught in this sin, just as He does those whose habit it is to destroy lives through malicious gossip (1 Corinthians 6:11; Ephesians 2:1-10; Colossians 3:5-10).

5. Marriage is designed by God to be a sacred union that expresses through both one man and one woman His image. As such, God therefore designed marriage to be very specific in its conditions. This Divinely defined model of marriage has been recognized by all cultures for all time. Since it is exactly the opposite of homosexual unions, these unions (gay) cannot fulfill and therefore can never come under the universally recognized Divine definition and intent of marriage (Genesis 1:26-31; 2:18-25).

6. Committed marital love on earth, as designed by God, is also to be a picture of the wedding of the Lamb of God (Jesus Christ) to the church in eternity (Ephesians 5:22-33; Revelation 19:9). The enemy of our souls seeks to distort this picture and thus do damage to God's good design, which in turn dishonors the church and her union to Christ.

7. We are to work and pray for a society in which we have the freedom to love and obey God. Our work: As Christians, we are called to hold up God's standard of holiness, not only in our personal lives, but also in society by not taking part in the unfruitful works of darkness and by exposing those unfruitful works for what they are (Ephesians 5:11). The privilege and responsibility of voting is one way we can do this. Our praying: We are also to pray for our governing leaders so that we may lead a tranquil life in all godliness and dignity (1 Timothy 2:1-2).

8. Come what may, God is still on His throne. He sovereignly raises up and takes down nations and leaders (Dan. 2:21; Psalm 9:5 & 20; 10:16; 22:28; 33:10; 47:8; 72:11). As Christians we must do our part to hold up His standard in order to protect or bring about religious freedoms. But when the tide turns against those freedoms, we must remember that God is still in control and He is bringing about His purposes. During times of religious persecution, the church is purified and the Christian made more fervent in his love for Christ and more bold in his witness of Him.

That's it for now from me. But please watch this excellent video addressing these concerns (click here for video).

Continue reading...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Home From Hawaii

What a great time we had with our family in Hawaii! During our vacation we had our own personal live-in tour guide - our son Jeff. Though he has only lived on the island for about 6 months, he already knows it like the back of his hand. He and the rest of the family entertained us and were such wonderful hosts and hostesses. We are truly grateful for their kind attention to us.

We loved every minute. Every moment, that is, until the last day, when, as we were leaving Hanuama Bay, we discovered that Robert had lost his wedding ring while he was snorkeling. We were and still are so saddened by that. He had worn that ring for nearly 32 years. In a moment it was gone (a good picture of life itself, I guess).

Well, a picture is worth a thousand words so I am going to stop with the words and start with the photos.

We got up early to watch the sunrise from one of the most scenic spots on the island. It was a little chilly and Robert could not find his coat, so he wore his robe.
At the beach. Joy tried really hard to bury her grandpa in the sand,
but he kept popping up.
From left: Jono, Joel, Grandpa and Jake
at Shark's Cove for snorkeling.
Jeff, our son, at Shark's Cove (you
can see the coral reef under the water).
Our grandsons, Jono, Joel
and Jake at Shark's Cove.
That's me at the
Polynesian Cultural Center.
Robert on the U.S.S. Missouri during
our tour there at Pearl Harbour.
Out on the water in a
catamaran off of Waikiki.
The main sail
of our catamaran.
The catamaran cruise was at sunset.
Beautiful sight at the end of the day!
Diamond Head
from the catamaran.
The only photo of Robert and me on the
catamaran. Good likeness, don't you think?
Standing in front of one of those
crazy looking trees at Waikiki.


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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Family Controversy

Since before we went to Hawaii (got back very late last night - and that, by the way, is why there was no Tidy Tip Tuesday today), I have wanted to do a post about same-sex marriage. In California right now, same-sex marriage is legal because four California Supreme Court activist judges ruled against 4 million people to overturn marriage as defined by those people - that being a legal and moral union between one man and one woman. On November 4th, the citizens of California have the opportunity once more to preserve the definition of marriage in their state. They have the opportunity to protect marriage as it has been from the beginning of time.

I am currently watching a video that is quite lengthy (over an hour), but just from the first 15 minutes of viewing it, I have been informed of many aspects of this controversy that I was not aware of. For instance, did you know (I did not) that all legal benefits have already been bestowed on members of gay unions living in California that are currently available to traditional married couples? These same-sex unions have simply not been allowed the distinction that heterosexual unions have been allowed - that of being united legally and morally in a union called marriage. And one reason is because they cannot procreate independently in a union between themselves (it will never happen without at least a third party). Marriage has always been defined as one man and one woman who have the capacity to create new life within their union of two by the addition of children (though infertility or the choice not to bear children does not dismiss a heterosexual couple from being married for obvious reasons.)

May I beseech you to watch this video with me? It will inform you so that you can intelligently and accurately state to those who may be undecided (and even to those who have decided but are open to hear opposing aspects) just what the implications are of marriage being redefined to include gay couples. It is a message that all should hear and know even if redefining marriage is not being challenged in their state at present.

Go here to view the video and pass it on to others that you know even if they are not Californians. This is so important to the health of our society and to our religious freedoms.

God willing, I will be writing about this again soon.


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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tidy Tip Tuesday - Soap, Water, Work and Money Saving Shower Technique

This will be a brief but, hopefully helpful post. Since we are in Hawaii right now I am busy with vacation stuff and also visiting our son and his family (see post below for some photos). It rough!

Anyway, the tip I have for you today is something I have started doing just recently. You only have to remember two things when you shower to save soap, water and work (and time) and therefore money.

Step 1. Turn off the water when you lather up. I have found that by doing this, I do not need to lather my wash clothe more than once. It is as soapy by the time I reach my feet as it was when I washed my face because the shower spray is not rinsing the soap off the clothe inadvertently.

Step 2. When you do turn the shower back on, if it is the hand-held type, hold the sprayer so that as it rinses the soap off of you it flows straight down instead of at an angle. This way the water does not deposit the soap on the shower enclosure walls, so there will be far less soap scum to clean off. If your shower nozzle is not this type, angle it straight down as much as possible and stand under it to rinse off.

So, by doing these two things you will save water, soap and work thus saving money! You will buy less soap, your water bill will be reduced and you will save some money on shower cleaners. You will also save some time due to not having to scrub the shower as often.

By the way, when I do need to scrub my shower, I use the homemade soft scrub posted here on my blog. I put a little on a green scratchy scrubber and the soap scum melts away. And it is so pleasant to use.

Have a great day!!


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Monday, October 20, 2008

We're in Hawaii!

Robert and I are on a 12-day vacation right now - in Hawaii. Our son and his family live here on Oahu, on the windward (eastern) side of the island. The weather has been so cool since we arrived. And we are so enjoying being with our family.

Robert has never been here and I was here once for about a week 40 years ago. I had been telling everyone that it had been 30 years, but then my daughter-in-law reminded me that it was before our son, her husband, was born and he is 38. So, upon catching my breath after the shock, I had to admit that she
was right-on about the math. It was nearly 40 years ago! My, oh my!

Anyway, I just want to post some photos at this point.

Our oldest grandson, Jake, at the Banzai Pipeline beach.

Joy, our firstborn granddaughter, in her backyard holding the red ginger blossom she picked there.

Robert at Waikiki.

North view of family at Mokapu'u beach.

South view of family at Mokapu'u beach.

Robert, me, Julie (our daughter-in-law) and our grandson, Joel.

Our grandson Jonathan, in his snorkeling fins.

Our grandson, Joel, showing the pineapple he prepared. Yum!!!

Julie at Banzai Pipeline beach.

Robert, Joy and Joel at Waikiki.

A great looking sea turtle, basking in the sun.

Our son, Jeff, body-boarding at Waikiki.


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Monday, October 13, 2008

Rock Me, Mama!

Though I have never mentioned this before, it may interest you to know that, at 59 years of age, I am caring for a child in my home. Last year I began watching a baby while his mom was at work (it has been a necessity for her to work at this time). Riley was just under one year old when God blessed me with him. He is now just under two years of age.

He comes to my home at 5:30 in the morning, five days a week and stays till about 3:15 in the afternoon. Riley is a very happy and well behaved little boy and loves to come stay with "Granny" and "Poppy". Though he is not a grandchild, he thinks he is and we love him like he is.

I said that to say the following. Yesterday I came across a post on another website that I thought was interesting. It was about the pros and cons of allowing children to sleep with their parents in the parent's bed. Read it here if you'd like.

This idea of mom and dad and baby being in the same bed leaves me with a question: "What ever happened to the age old, tried and true rocking chair? Do mothers of young children ever use the rocking chair anymore? I now hear and read so much about this practice of having the baby in bed with the parents. I just don't get it for several reasons which I will express in the following questions:

1. How do mom and dad get adequate sleep with baby in the same bed?

2. Isn't there concern that the baby could be smothered by mom or dad if they actually do sleep soundly?

3. What ever happened to the truth that the bed is a marriage bed, not a family bed (even as far as an infant sleeping in their bed for 3 months goes)?

4. And lastly, with baby in bed with mom and dad, will this not put dad at a disadvantage since he has to go to work and earn a living? Will not his performance levels at work be affected by interrupted or inadequate sleep?

Now may I offer an alternative that may be superior to the family bed option?

From the time my children were infants till they were toddlers I rocked them. My parents rocked me to sleep. Rocking my children provided a structured time for me to cuddle with them and to sing and read to them (in other words, to teach them). This also gave me much-needed down-time to relax, though it still served as quality time with my children.

Enter Riley on the scene - I now rock him. At first he didn't like it. But I did not give up. It wasn't long before he began to love our 15-20 minutes together before his nap. I sing simple children's songs to him and he has actually learned to carry a tune and sing the words. His favorite song is Old McDonald Had a Farm which he sings as "Ol McGonnel" (so cute!!!).

We also discuss all the topics relevant and important to a toddler, such as the sounds that animals make and where his and my eyes, nose, cheeks, mouth, tongue, etc. are. Of course, I also read to him - small-sized board books. And he loves to have his "blankey" during this time. (It is the only time he has it other than to sleep with.) When Riley finally falls asleep I put him in his bed. If he wakes up when I lay him down, he knows he must stay put and go back to sleep. His nap lasts about 1 1/2 - 2 hours.

Now lest you think that this trains a child to depend upon the rocking chair to fall asleep, you need to know that when this little guy comes in the morning (at 5:30), I put him to bed without rocking him. He does not fuss at all. In fact, he smiles sweetly, kisses me and says, "Night, night, Granny." That's it! He goes right down and sleeps till at least 7 and sometimes till 7:30, which gives me time with the Lord before making breakfast. Riley has learned to adjust to my agenda and time schedule.

Rocking my children, grandchildren (and now Riley) has proven to be only beneficial. All of my little ones loved their rocking time and consistently went to bed willingly for their naps. I never had to wean them off or break them from the habit of the rocking chair. They eventually just outgrew the chair and my lap - literally. They got too big to rock. As it was uncomfortable at that point, they no longer desired to be on Mommy's lap and the feeling was mutual.

Another benefit was that when the children were too big to rock anymore, rocking time just naturally graduated into a reading time with them. Since the time was already set aside, I just moved the children into their beds and sat at the bedside and read (at night and nap time also). Thus they learned to love books and reading.

Rocking time was also advantageous in that my husband and I slept soundly at night. However, I always woke when any of my infants were hungry. I got out of bed and rocked them during their feedings. Then I was able to return to bed where I knew I could stretch out however I wanted. My husband did not have to worry about rolling over on the baby nor was he disturbed and kept awake when it was time to feed and change her. This was obviously helpful for him (we are to be helping our husbands in ways like this, are we not?) since he had to get up and go to work in the morning.

It seems to me that the rocking chair is a win-win way of nurturing babies and young children, but it seems to be a lost grace. I would be interested to know if anyone out there still rocks their children. Reiterating, I hear and read much about the bed thing, but never anything about the good old fashioned rocking chair. What a shame for this is how I remember it:

The Rock of Love

My mama rocked me in her chair.
My papa also tried,
Though on his shoulder still I laid,
My eyes were opened wide.

What tender words I heard from them,
And songs so dear and sweet.
They nestled me and whispered love,
Then rocked me fast asleep.

With fond affection I recall
The stories that they shared.
But precious more, their kind caress
In that old rocking chair.

It made for such sweet sleep and dreams,
For Christ's love was displayed.
"Now let the little children come."
It seems I heard Him say.

This habit carried on until
My feet - they reached the floor.
Though too big now for mama's lap,
She loved me like before.

I too have rocked my precious ones,
And tender words I spoke.
Yes, that old rocker, though it creaks
Still nurtures little folk.


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Tidy Tip Tuesday - Vinegar - Not Just for Salads

Since I posted some unusual uses for baking soda last week, I thought I'd like to post some uses for vinegar this week that are also somewhat out of the ordinary. So here goes.

For the following cleaning tips use white distilled vinegar.

Remove mineral deposits from a faucet by dampening a rag with vinegar and then placing it on the area on the faucet that is stained.

Sweeten the garbage disposal by making vinegar ice cubes and then grinding them in the garbage disposal.

Freshen the washing machine. Pour one cup of vinegar into the machine. Fill the washer and run on a regular cycle though without clothing. This helps to clean the hoses and remove soap scum. Repeat monthly.

Soften clothing without toxic softener sheets. Use 1 cup vinegar to a load of clothing in the rinse cycle. Clothing will be softened because vinegar removes the alkalies from the clothing that is deposited there by the detergents used to wash the clothes.

For the following kitchen tips, use unpasteurized raw apple cider vinegar.

Tenderize meat. Use vinegar to marinate meat as it both kills bacteria and tenderizes. Use 1/4 cup per 2-3 pounds of meat. Marinate meat overnight, then cook without draining or rinsing. Add herbs as desired to the vinegar marinade.

Make your own red wine vinegar. If you are out of red wine vinegar don't rush off to the store. Instead mix 2 tablespoons of vinegar with 1 teaspoon of red wine. Use as you would red wine vinegar.


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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Word-in-My-Heart Wednesday - James 1:13-14

Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. James 1:13-15

I found the following commentary by Ben Reaoch, pastor of Three Rivers Grace Church in Pittsburgh, PA. on John Piper's website. It is so thought provoking that I need not re-invent the wheel.

Twelve Sins We Blame on Others

It started in the Garden. Adam said to God, "The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate." (Genesis 3:12)
The first man, caught in the first sin, turns to blame his wife. And he extends the blame to God as well! He implies that he would have remained innocent if God hadn’t put Eve in the garden with him.

The blame-shifting in the Garden continues today. Our proud hearts send us desperately looking for someone else to point to every time we’re confronted with our own sin. There must be someone else—our spouse, sibling, parent, boss, co-worker, pastor, friend, or God, himself.
We are so desperate to justify ourselves that we become irrational. Here are 12 examples.

1) Anger
I wouldn’t lose my temper if my co-workers were easier to get along with, or if my kids behaved better, or if my spouse were more considerate.

2) Impatience
I would be a very patient person if it weren’t for traffic jams and long lines in the grocery store. If I didn’t have so many things to do, and if the people around me weren’t so slow, I would never become impatient!

3) Lust
I would have a pure mind if there weren’t so many sensual images in our culture.

4) Anxiety
I wouldn’t worry about the future if my life were just a little more secure—if I had more money, and no health problems.

5) Spiritual Apathy
My spiritual life would be so much more vibrant and I would struggle with sin less if my small group were more encouraging, or if Sunday school were more engaging, or if the music in the worship service were more lively, or if the sermons were better.

6) Insubordination
If my parents/bosses/elders were godly leaders, then I would joyfully follow them.

7) A Critical Spirit
It’s not my fault that the people around me are ignorant and inexperienced.

8) Bitterness
If you knew what that person did to me, you would understand my bitterness. How could I forgive something like that?

9) Gluttony
My wife/husband/roommate/friend is a wonderful cook! The things they make are impossible to resist.

10) Gossip
It’s the people around me who start the conversations. There’s no way to avoid hearing what others happen to say. And when others ask me questions, I can’t avoid sharing what I know.

11) Self-Pity
I’ll never be happy, because my marriage/family/job/ministry is so difficult.

12) Selfishness
I would be more generous if we had more money.

Making excuses like this is arrogant and foolish. It’s a proud way of trying to justify our actions and pacify our guilty consciences. And it keeps us from humbling ourselves before God to repent of our sins and seek his forgiveness.

Consider James 1:13-14, which leaves us with no way of escaping our own sin and guilt. We cannot blame God, for he “cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.”

Instead, we have to accept the humbling truth that “each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.” This will end the blame game, and it will send us pleading for Christ’s mercy and grace.


Continue reading...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Woman is Helper - Three Facets of the Woman's Role as Helper

Part 2 - Aiding by Complementing Godly Male Leadership

The following is a series on Biblical womanhood that I have taught both here in the states and abroad. It is universal because it is the Biblical model of the helper role and therefore applies to Christian women the world over. It will be delivered in bite-sized pieces in the following weeks. I pray that you will be encouraged as you read.
(Please find Part 1 of this series here.)

Whether you are married or unmarried, as a woman you are "helper" to godly male leadership. That would translate into being a helpmeet for your husband or, if you are not married, into being a helper for church leadership. As a helper you will basically fulfill your role in three specific ways. God has designed us, as women with distinct inclinations. Women are endowed by their Creator with specific characteristics that enable them to function as God intended when He first created woman. First of all I want to state what those three characteristics or facets are and then I will define and elaborate on each one throughout the coming weeks:

Facet 1. As helper to male leadership, woman is an aide or supporter:

A.) As an aide woman completes godly male leadership
B.) As an aide woman complements godly male leadership
C.) As an aide woman submits to godly male leadership

Facet 2. As helper to male leadership, woman is a keeper in the home.

Facet 3. As helper to male leadership, woman is a nurturer of life.

In this post I will cover what it means for woman as helper to aide godly male leadership by complementing that leadership (Facet 1B).

Though man and woman are equal in that each is an image bearer of their Creator, they are also different, are they not? We can see the obvious physical differences, but women are also different emotionally. For instance, women enjoy the intricate details of whatever it is they are involved in, while men are bottom-line creatures. We women know that the real story is in the particulars and the implications of them. We willingly get lost in the finer points.

So when I am relating an important incident to my husband, sharing the details is just second nature to me. It is then that Robert typically grows impatient with all the minutiae and says something like, "Just give me the bottom-line, Honey. I don't need to know all the small stuff." Though I don't understand that, I have given up trying to convince him otherwise. He's a man and I just need to accept the fact that God created him to be different than me. And when God finished His creation (man and woman in particular), He pronounced that His design was good, in fact, it was "very good" - even this difference between us.

God created the genders, as different as they are, to complement each other. Again we can see this illustrated with the helping hand. My left hand always complements my right hand. It never has an agenda all its own, but always identifies itself with my right hand and what it is doing and supports it. My left hand makes things easier, not harder for my right hand. It complements its counterpart, never competes with it.

The appendages on my right and left arms are equal yet different, illustrating the same thing with man and woman. Both are hands, but they are different in significant ways. The physical design of my left hand is exactly and equally opposite that of my right hand. That's equality with diversity, just as woman is equal in her humanity with man, both genders having been created in God’s image, yet woman is exactly the opposite of man in physical and emotional characteristics and in function. Though my hands are exact opposites of each other they fit together perfectly. And the only reason they fit together so perfectly is precisely because they are exact opposites. If I had two right hands or two left hands nothing much would be accomplished and the two certainly could not become one.

Feminists tell us that women must compete to become equal in all ways with men. But God designed the differences between man and woman for the purpose of complementing one another – just like the right and left hand complement each other.

My left hand is physically weaker than my right hand and so is somewhat dependent upon it for its strength, but still my left hand assists my right and adds its own independent strength to my right hand. The strength and independence of my left hand is absolutely needed by my right hand, and visa versa. The two are interdependent upon each other. Together the two are stronger than if they were alone, though one is physically weaker. This is the true nature of a complementary relationship.

And so it is with man and woman. Though she is the weaker vessel, physically, she needs man and he needs her. She is to complement him in all he does rather than pursue her own independent course.

This does not mean that she never seeks a ministry in which her husband is not involved, if she is married. It does not mean that she gives up her personality to be glued to her husband's side as if she had no individuality herself. It simply means that whatever God-glorifying thing (this could be planting a garden) her husband pursues, she is available to help him achieve it. She does not make it hard for him. She does not compete.

Think again about how the left hand complements the right hand, never working against it - always there whenever the right hand needs it, but it is so different and individual that it is called "left". It is situated on the opposite side of the body and if it had to, it could function without the right hand. I got along just fine when I had my right hand in a sling for several weeks. Though it was challenging, it was not impossible. Life went on.

The call to complement my husband has not always been something that I have embraced. There was a time when, if Robert asked for my help and wanted my undivided attention immediately, if it was something that I thought could wait, I became perturbed. Perhaps he needed my point of view for a lesson he was preparing for the Sunday morning adult training time that he was scheduled to teach in two weeks. If I was absorbed in doing something for myself, I would expect him to wait until I was finished. Philippians 2:3-4 was not my mindset:

Do nothing from selfish ambition or empty conceit, but with humility of mind, regard one another as more important than yourselves. Do not merely look out for your own personal interests but also for the interests of others.
Looking out for my husband's interests or the interests of the leadership of the church - this is part of what it means to be helper. This is the woman's assignment from her Creator. Helping godly male leadership by working alongside and complementing, never competing is a high calling that glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ.

Reiterating, woman aides by complementing male leadership, whether that is her husband's leadership in the home or the leadership of the elders in her church. And again, woman aides in this way regardless of her marital status.

For the next post we will continue to explore how woman aides godly male leadership, this time in regard to submission. And I don't want to hear any groans!

Continue reading...

Tidy Tip Tuesday - Some Unusual Uses for Baking Soda

Here are some out-of-the-ordinary uses for baking soda that I found online. Send in your ideas too!

Facial Scrub: Mix together one part baking soda and two parts ground oatmeal for a soothing facial scrub. Then add enough water to make a paste. Gently rub the paste onto your face, avoiding the eye area. Leave the facial on for a few minutes. Lastly, remove it with plenty of cool water and a wash cloth. Your face will feel noticeably soft and smooth!

Hole Filler: To fill holes in your wall (if you have no spackling compound), simply mix together some white toothpaste and baking soda. Fill the holes in completely, then allow the mixture to dry. Touch up with appropriate paint.

Car Freshener: For a safer car-deodorizer - one that does not contain respiratory toxins, use baking soda. Simply fill the ashtrays with baking soda. The soda will absorb the odors and effectively freshen the interior.

Shoe Deodorizer: For a shoe deodorizer, fill a pair of old socks with baking soda. Tie a knot in the top of each sock. Then, place the socks in a pair of shoes or slippers that need freshening!

Litter Box Deodorizer: Remedy a strong ammonia smelling cat litter box by using baking soda. Start with a clean box and pour baking soda in it until it's a couple inches full. Then, add kitty litter as usual. The soda will help absorb the ammonia smell.

Soil Tester: Many types flowers, fruits, and vegetables prefer acidic soil to grow to their fullest. If you're not sure whether the soil in an area is acidic or not, then perform this test: mix up a quarter of a cup of baking soda with two cups of water. Then, stir in a cup of the soil. If the mixture foams up, then the soil is acidic.

CD Fix: To get rid of scratches on your CD's (this is NOT for use with any DVD's, only CD's) wet a paper towel and dip the wet end into baking soda. Use this to gently rub the CD over the scratch. It will polish the edges of the scratch, and your CD will play again.

Have a great Tuesday!

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