There has been a lot of snow, sleet, ice, wind, and just plain cold this winter. Yikes! Whatever happened to Global Warming? All kidding aside, people are really being slammed with high electric bills, gas bills, fuel oil bills, cost of food increases, and just general pocket emptying expenses. What are some simple day-by-day things you can do that will help you maximize each and every one of your resources? Let's try these on for starters:
- Laundry your clothes in COLD water. Most of the time cold water and liquid soap will clean the clothes fine. You save on heating the hot water. (Did you know that Consumer Reports recommends liquid "cold water" Tide for washing clothes?)
- Hang clothes to dry. You can do this inside on coat hangers from the shower rod for small wearables. Use a dryer rack for undies and such. Line dry sheets, etc. outside. Drying clothes inside the house during the winter will generate moisture in the air which makes a lower-set heat temperature more comfortable and also is better for your breathing.
- Use fans to circulate air during the hot weather. You can tolerate a higher set thermostat for your air conditioning if the air is moving. Floor fans, and ceiling fans work great for this.
- Avoid eating much sugar during hot weather. Your body converts the sugar into fuel which your body goes into gear to burn. So you start getting warmer.
- During the winter you can cook moisture generating soups, etc. which help to heat the house. Baking also helps to heat the house. And as an added bonus, these home made foods just simply taste so good! Double bonus: warm moist air protects your mucus membranes and help keep you well and comfortable.
- During the summer, cook large batches that need long cooking. You can rewarm these pre-cooked items quickly in a microwave. The pre-cooked meals are convenient, and one-cooking time utilizes the heat for preparing one meal but you get several meals for the heating "price" of one. During hot weather, the one-cooking time heats up only once saving on your AC and also saving on the fuel to cook. Microwaves are great for no-heat cooking.
- Cook up a batch of boiled chicken. Make chicken salad. Freeze meal portions of cooked chicken for other uses - salads, tacos, casseroles, quick-stir frys. Freeze the broth that boiling the chicken created for you. This saves the cost of purchasing broth, and is usually better for you. The broth can be used for soups, gravies, and for cooking vegetables or rice.
- Remember, to eat cold meals on hot days.
- Eat hot meals on cold days.