Author Archives: reader

Oily rag goodwill

Nmkozik from Oamaru says she swaps home grown veges with neighbours – as well as giving surplus produce to her elderly neighbours, so they don’t go without. What a nice person Nmkozik is, and it just goes to show the good things that come from living off the smell of an oily rag.


Adrienne from Christchurch has a couple of pie recipes to share. “Here’s a recipe for those with a toastie pie gadget. Cut a pastry square in half and place on the toastie pie maker. Use leftover mince, spaghetti, baked beans or a mixture of chopped onion, bacon, 1 egg, and grated cheese. Put the other […]

DIY heater

Peedeenz from Hastings writes, “For those with welding and mechanical skills and a bit of spare time, converting old decommissioned propane cylinders into a pot belly stove for heating the shed works well. There are a number of YouTube videos showing how to do this. Since scrap metal dealers don’t want the cylinders, go to […]

Straw box cooker

Butterfly Lady from Blockhouse Bay writes, “Slow cookers are a great way of cooking casseroles/stews but who can afford to buy one? Try making your own slow cooker… it’s called a straw box. I use a strong carton or a chilly bin, which I pad with towels (or any clean insulation fabric/paper), one folded neatly […]

Winter chill

Maureen has some advice for beating the winter chill. “I have just made a draught stopper from leftover polar fleece and soft toy filler. Also in older houses check that windows and doors are closing right shut. If not buy the stick on strips for the areas where the windows and doors do not meet […]

Bathroom cleaner

Teresa from Auckland writes, “As a bathroom cleaner, I use one bar of sunlight soap and a green foam ‘scratchie’. It sits in my shower and I clean one wall every second day or so. Works a treat.”

Dehydrating Greens

Josephine from Otorohanga writes, “Dehydrating Greens. I removed the centre stalks of red cabbage HUGE TOUGH outer leaves which had NOT been sprayed.I dried them for hours in the oven on a low heat (expensive?). Next I did kale on a cake rack in the electric fry pan squashed under the high lid on the […]

DIY cleaning cloths

Gaynora from Kapiti writes, “I’m shocked re the number of disposable cleaning cloths in supermarkets. I cut up old tee shirts etc; use & reuse them. I can still have different colours for different tasks.”

Money Mates

Alicia from Whakatane writes, “I would like to share with you about the Money Mates program the Budget Services provide around the country. Money Mates is a free, confidential educational program to learn and share in a comfortable environment. A small group of persons get together to learn and share about financial topics that are […]


Essie from Auckland writes, Loquats. An easy care, pretty fruit tree which doesn’t need pruning. I steam (or boil) the big seeds until edible. They could be ground up and used to make almond biscuits with a little almond essence. (Use some flour & butter, too.) A Taiwanese lady told me loquat leaves are a […]