Category Archives: Reader tips

Soap nuts

If anyone is thinking of using soap nuts as an alternative to commercial laundry powder, be sure to remove them before the rinse cycle or you’ll end up like me with brown stains on your washing. I followed the directions on the pack precisely which included putting the nuts in the bag provided & not […]

Bitter Brussel sprouts

Last week I brought some Brussel sprouts that were really bitter so put a teaspoon of golden syrup in with them made them really sweet. Sugar did not work on these ones as they were really bitter. Cheers. Doug.

Pinging and petrol

TB from Blenheim writes, “On the face of it, then, a motorist would seem ill-advised to use regular petrol in a car with a high-compression engine. That was certainly the case in the past. But cars today have sensors that listen carefully for the knocking sound, and instantly retard the ignition system when they detect […]


Paul has this tip for frugal motorists. “There is an APP for mobile phones called ‘gaspy’. It’s a kiwi bit of software that uses the GPS on your phone to show the cheapest petrol stations near you – and the distance from your current position.” We were aware of the APP and first looked at […]

Re-knit woollen garments

G Ma from Kaikohe writes “Over 40 years ago I too used to re-knit old woollen garments into multi-colored tops for the children. The problem was they didn’t want to be seen dead in them. Sooo shameful.”

Free plants

Dandelion Farm from Whangarei writes, Most gardeners we have found are generous with plant sharing because nature provides an abundance. My husband helps prune people’s fruit trees and if they have a good variety he takes cutting material away. Often we see a plant we like which is in seed and ask the gardener for […]

Keeping to a list

SW from Christchurch writes: I have found that with online shopping I stick to exactly what is on my list so stick to my budget. Apart from the sweets/snack aisle I look at!  

Bubble wrap insulation

A piece of plastic bubble wrap package material rolled up and measuring the width of the window can work above the curtain rod as an insulator if no pelmet is available. Good when renting houses to avoid expense.  – Yn from Victoria

Smelly bones

Put meat bones/scraps in a plastic bag in the freezer. Come collection day there is no smell in your rubbish bin. – Audrey from Tauranga.

Dog buscuits recipe

The recipe I always use for dog biscuits is cut some liver (whichever kind is the cheapest) into chunks and bring to boil in water until just cooked. Then cut into small dice or mince the meat, add the cooking water, and enough wholemeal flour to make a firm dough. You can also add some […]