Monthly Archives: October 2017

Vinegar for Gardening #3

Vinegar for Gardening #3

Use white distilled vinegar unless noted different.

Gardening with Vinegar


Stop mold from forming on cantaloupe by rubbing each melon with 1 teaspoon vinegar.

Climbing Frames

Clean and wipe down with 1 part vinegar and 1 part water.

Bird Nests

Need to stop birds from building nest in a certain area?  Drench area with vinegar several time over a few days.  The birds will stay away.

Animal Deterrent

Dogs, cats, deer, rabbits, raccoons, and foxes all hate the smell of vinegar, even after it dries.  Soak rags in vinegar and tie on to stakes or fencing.  Re-soak every 7-10 days.

Clay and Plastic Flower Pots

Make a solution of 1 cup vinegar and 2 cups cold water.  Soak pots over night.  Scrub clean and wash with soap and water.  Air dry.

Fresh Cut Flowers

Keep flowers fresher longer by adding 2 tablespoons vinegar and 1 tablespoon sugar to your vase of water.

Garden Furniture

To deodorize and decrease mildew growth on plastic or mesh furniture, including umbrellas.  Mix 2 cups vinegar, 2 Tablespoons detergent in a bucket of hot water.  Take a soft brush to work the solution into the grooves including pads and umbrella.  Rinse with cold water.  Place in the sun to air dry.


Pour vinegar around the sandbox to keep cats from using it as a litter box.

Rhododendrons, Gardenia, Azaleas

If you have alkaline soil and are trying to grow the above flowers, add 1 1/2 Tablespoons of vinegar to 8 cups water.  Water the ground around the flowers.

Swimming Pool

Pour vinegar around the pool to keep flies away.

Why Is My Bread Dough Not Rising

Why Is My Bread Not Rising

Several people have asked my Why Is My Bread Not Rising?  There could be several different answers to this question.

Fall has arrived and winter is around the corner.  There is nothing like the aroma of fresh bread hitting you square in the face as you enter the house.  I love  the whole process of making bread.  Combining the yeast and water, adding flour and seeing it form a dough brings me happiness.

What about those times when nothing seems to go correctly, even if you have made the same bread recipe for the last 34 years.  Here are some reasons why your bread dough doesn’t rise.

Old Dead Yeast:  Inactive dry yeast can live for years.  If your yeast is where the temperature fluctuates this can cause your yeast to die.  So if you find some yeast hiding in the back of the refrigerator just assume it is dead and buy some new yeast.

Yeast is too hot:  Most bread recipes call for the yeast to be added to some type of liquid that has been heated.  If the liquid is too hot, it will kill yeast cells.  When in doubt use a kitchen thermometer to see how hot your liquid is before adding your yeast.

Room is cold or there is a draft:  The room your dough is rising in should be between 75 and 90 degrees.  If your dough sits too long in a cold room or in a draft the yeast will go dormant and die.

Rise Time:  If your dough is taking forever to rise, it could be a cold room or your yeast has died.  Another reason is using whole grain flour which takes longer to rise.  Be patient and let your dough rise.

Pan Size:  Are you using the correct pan size?  Might be your pan is too big for the amount of dough.  8 1/2 x 4 1/2 will hold 3 cups of flour.  9 x 5 pan will hold 4 cups of flour and a 10 x 5 pan will hold 4 1/2 cups of flour.

So your dough didn’t rise.  DON’T throw that dough out.

Roll it out and make flat breads.
Roll out, cut into strips and wrap it around a cooking stick over the campfire and cook.
In your cast iron pan roll out your dough.  Melt butter and spread on top of the dough.  Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top of the butter.  Cook until done.
Roll out as thin as possible and make some crackers.  Add some herbs before baking.

Now go enjoy making some bread.  ENJOY!

Why Is My Bread Dough Not Rising.

Amish Onion Patties

Amish Onion Patties

This is an old recipe but one that you will add to the recipe file once you have made these.  Making onion rings can be somewhat of a hassle.  All that dipping and re-dipping can get very messy.  Not a problem when you make these Amish Onion Patties.

Amish Onion Patties frying in a cast iron skillet.

Amish Onion Patties

1 cup flour
2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 Tablespoon cornmeal
2 1/2 cups chopped onions
1 cup milk
1/2 cup oil for frying
Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, black pepper and cornmeal.
Add the onion and mix.
Add the milk and mix.
Drop by spoonful into the hot oil.  Cook until golden brown.  Turn over and cook the other side.

Amish Onion Patties golden brown.


Amish Onion Patties

Vinegar Cleaning #2 Kitchen/Bathroom

Vinegar Cleaning #2 Kitchen/Bathroom

Use white distilled vinegar unless noted different.

Vinegar All Purpose Cleaner

Fill a bucket with 1/2 cut white distilled vinegar, 1 cup ammonia, 1/4 cup baking soda and 1 gallon of water.  I fill a spray bottle and put the rest in a gallon jar to replenish the spray bottle when empty.  Spray on spots and stains wipe with a clean cloth.  Great for cleaning walls and painted surfaces.

Glass, Stainless Steel, Plastic and Laminate Surfaces

Fill a spray bottle with 2 cups water, 1 cup vinegar and couple drops dish washing soap.  Spray and wipe clean.

Pots and Pans

This is safe house on all metal cookware, including copper pans.  Combine equal part salt and flour.  Add just enough vinegar to make a paste.  Work the paste onto the cooking surface and around outside of pan.  Rinse with warm water and dry.

Mopping ceramic Tiles on Floor

Add 1 pint vinegar to a gallon of warm water.  Mop floor.

Ceramic Tiles on Walls

Mix 1 cup vinegar to 3 cups warm water.  Wipe tiles clean.


Keep sponges fresh by soaking overnight in 1/4 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup water.  Rinse before using.

Coffee Maker

Fill decanter with vinegar and 1 cup water.  Place filter in machine and pour mixture into the coffeemaker chamber.  Let coffeemaker run through a cycle.  Remove filter and replace with a new filter.  Run clean water through for 2 cycles.

Cutting Boards and Storage Jars

Wipe clean with full strength vinegar.

Drains deodorized and Unblock

Pour 1/2 cup baking soda down drain.  Next pour 1 cup vinegar down drain.  After foam disappears flush with hot water.  Wait 5 minutes.  Flush with cold water.  Repeat if necessary.

Glasses, Crystal, Fine Cut Glass

Add 1 cup vinegar to your sink filled with warm water.  Wash glasses.  Allow to air dry.


In a glass bowl place 1 cup water and 1/4 cup vinegar.  Place in microwave and set for 5 minutes.  When bowl has cooled use mixture to wipe out microwave.


Clean with vinegar and rag.  Wi[ing everything down.


Wash scissors in vinegar.  Keep open to air dry.

Teapot, Thermos

Fill with equal parts vinegar and warm water.  Let sit one hour.  Rinse and air dry.

Vinegar Cleaning #2 Kitchen/Bathroom


Scrub and wipe down with vinegar on sink and toilet.  Rinse with cold water.

Shower Curtain

Place couple towels and shower curtain in washer.  Add 1/2 cup liquid laundry soap and 1/2 cup baking soda.  Wash on warm water cycle.  Add 1 cup vinegar to rinse cycle.  Before washing machine spins remove shower curtain and hang to air dry.

Shower Door, Sliding Door Tracks

Fill tracks with 2 cups vinegar.  Let sit 3 to 4 hours.  If tracks are really dirty heat vinegar for 30 seconds in microwave.  Scrub tracks.  Flush with hot water.  Vinegar Cleaning #1  Laundry/Washer



Vinegar Cleaning #1 Laundry Section

Vinegar Cleaning #1 Laundry

Use white vinegar for all the laundry tips.

WARNING:  Do Not us vinegar if you have added bleach to your rinse water.  Will cause harmful vapors.

Clean Washing Machine

Once a month pour 2 cups of white distilled vinegar into washing machine.  Set to run a full cycle empty.  Helps clean out soap scum and disinfect washer.

Conditioning Fabric

Stop purchasing expensive fabric conditioners.  Add 1/2 pint of vinegar to your rinse cycle.  Keeps linens soft.

Stop Color Fading

Pour 1/2 pint vinegar into your wash cycle.  Brightens colors in each load.

Colors Running

Soak any new clothes or fabric you think might bleed into other clothes.  Soak your new clothes in 2 cups vinegar for 15 minutes before washing.

Reduce Lint

Pour 1/2 pint vinegar into rinse cycle, helps reduce lint.

Stop static cling

Pro-long life of nylons and swimsuit by adding 1/2 pint to rinse cycle.

Take Yellow Out of Clothing

Soak clothing overnight in a solution of 12 cups warm water to 1 cup vinegar.  Wash next morning.

Blankets become soft and fluffy if you add 2 cups vinegar to rinse cycle.

Whiten Those Socks and T-Shirts

Add 1 cup vinegar to 2 1/2 pints of water into a large stock pot.  Bring to a boil.  Pour solution into a bucket and drop in socks or t-shirts.  Soak over night.  Wash next day.

Remove Odor from Clothing

To remove diesel, gas spills, cigarette smoke or mildew from clothing add 1/2 pint vinegar to rinse cycle.

Remove Blood Stains

Soon as possible, before the blood dries pour vinegar on the stain.  Soak 10 minutes.  Blot with a cloth or towel.  Repeat if necessary.

Deodorant Stains

Gently rub the spot with vinegar before washing.  Next wash on hottest setting that is safe for the fabric.

Crayon Stains

Rub crayon stain with an old toothbrush soaked in vinegar.  Wash immediately.


Wet the ink stain with vinegar. Rub in a paste of 2 parts vinegar to 3 parts cornflour.  Let the paste dry completely before washing.

Dried on Stains

Pre-treat with a solution of 3 Tablespoons of vinegar, 2 Tablespoons liquid detergent and 3 cups warm water.  Rub solution into the stain, blot dry and wash normal.

Remove Stains from Collars and Cuffs

Make a paste from 2 cups vinegar and 3 cups baking soda.  Scrub area and let paste set for 1/2 hour before washing.

Cloth Diapers

In a pail or bucket mix 1/2 pint vinegar, 16 pints of water.  Helps neutralize urine and prevents staining.  Soak and wash as usual.  Vinegar Cleaning #2  Kitchen/Bathroom