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It’s that time again!  Time to share a few useful tips with you.  But about what?  Seems picking a specific topic of interest that would be just right for right now….not as easy as it may sound.  I think I may need a tip or two on that subject…if anyone has any.  *snicker*

So…..My thought process for this post went something like this. Now imagine that I’m walking and moving around through the house, doing “stuff” while this self talk goes on.

“Ok, it’s time for another Tip Tuesday on the blog. What can I give tips about?  Everyone gives tips. What can I give a few tips about that is different? Lord, I don’t know!  Why is this so difficult?  Think, Ginger!  Think!  Hmmm, maybe…?  Nah, that one won’t fly. Oh!  I know! How about….?  Ummm….nah, that’s not any good either. Think, Ginger!  Gosh, it’s hot!  And the humidity nearly takes your breath!  Think! Think! Why did I start this Tip Tuesday to begin with? I musta been crazy.  Geez, the thermometer on the kitchen window says 94 degrees…and it’s not even noon yet!  Ginger, you have got to get a blog post written.  Think, girl!  Lawdy mercy! Look at my hair!  I look like I stuck my finger in a light socket!  Thank you, God, for giving me naturally wavy hair and creating humidity!  OK, there has to be a topic that is just right.  I just know it.  Oh my! The garden sure is looking a little worse for wear in this heat.  We need some rain….BADLY!  Think, Ginger! You need a topic. Oh my gosh, when will this heat end?  That’s everyone is talking about these days.  Ohhhhhhhh!  BINGO!”

Alrighty then!  How about some heat tips.  Record breaking temps have been the norm for many of us for a couple of weeks now.  Don’t let the heat get you down.  Use it to your advantage.  Laugh at the heat wave!

Make sun tea.  Place 4 family sized tea bags (I like using Luzianne brand) in a gallon sized glass jar filled with cold water.  Put on the lid and set the jar outside where it will get the full sun. Once it’s sat and steeped in the heat for a good 4-8 hours, bring it in, remove the tea bags, sweeten to taste (I like 3/4 cup pure cane sugar per gallon).   Whallah! The best darn tea EVER!

Warm up water in the sun.  Let the sun’s rays heat water for washing or cleaning and save you a little cash on your electric or gas bill.  Just set containers of water outside in the sun and let it do its thing.  Cover the container with a lid, a screen, or cheesecloth to keep debris, bugs and critters out of the water.

Dry your clothes outside.  Instead of heating up the house and running up your electric bill, hang you clothes outside in the sun to dry.  The sun, wind and hot air will dry them in a couple of hours.   Save a step in laundry duty by hanging the clothes up on hangers before hanging them outside.  For towels and undies, just hang them on a clothesline or across a deck railing.  A clothesline doesn’t have to be elaborate.  Any small, yet sturdy rope tied and strung tightly from one location to another will do the trick.  If you need instructions, just google it.

Recycle water.  Heat waves and lack of rain has put many on water restrictions. No washing cars or watering lawns and gardens.  “But what about all my veggies and flowers?  They’ll die!”  No problem.  Reuse bath water and dish water on your precious flowers and veggie plants.  Just scoop the used water out of tubs or sinks into a container after you finish washing.  Pour it on your plants.  The soap helps soften the soil and the used water is loaded with stuff that will help feed the plants.  Most plants love a gallon of water per foot of height each week.  Plant is planters or pots may need more because of faster evaporation.  *Don’t use water that has bleach in it or any other kind of chemical that could kill your plants.

Dry and highlight your hair in the sun.  Wash and condition your hair as usual.  Remove excess water, comb out to remove tangles, then go outside in the sun to let it air dry.  Your hair will enjoy the break from harsh heat styling and the sun’s rays will bring out any natural highlights in your hair, giving that sun-bleached look.

Style your hair in the heat.   Want curls?  While hair is still damp, simply twist strands/clusters of hair or wrap the strand from root to tip around your finger or several fingers for larger curls.  Pin the twists or wraps to the head with bobby pins or small plastic clips and let it hair completely dry in the outdoor heat (or inside).  When you remove the pins or clips, hair will be curled and you can style like you want.  Small twists or wraps will make smaller, tighter curls, larger twists or wraps will make larger, looser curls.  We call these pin curls around here, and like them because they tend to hold a little better and longer than when using curling irons or hot set rollers.

Want waves in your hair?  Braiding your hair in a bunch of small braids or just a few well place braids while its damp and letting it completely dry will give you a crimped wave  (from smaller braids) or loose wave (from larger braids) look.

Beat the frizzies with a tee.  Use an old cotton tee-shirt to remove water from your hair instead of a towel.  The loops on a conventional towel rough up the hair shaft, making it absorb the humidity more readily, often causing frizzies.  The smooth texture of knit cotton (like tees are made of) will help smooth the hair shaft, making humidity harder to penetrate the hair follicle and cause the dreaded frizz.  If you don’t have an old tee, go to the fabric store and buy a few yards of cotton knit fabric to use on your hair.  Oh…and you may want to ask the hubby before you take his favorite holey tee to repurpose it as a hair towel.  *smile*

Cook OUT instead of cooking IN.  Save on energy bills by cooking outside on a grill or in a BBQ pit instead of cooking meals inside using the stove.  You’ll avoid heating your home which will make your AC run less and it will reduce the power usage from the stove itself.  Cha-Ching!  Entire meals can be cooked outside and there are many sites online that you can find wonderful new recipes to try.  I love Food.com for real people recipes.

Cook foods with the sun’s heat.  I’ve read a few articles that say you can  cook foods in aluminum foil or stainless steel pots, simply by placing it (the covered food) in the hot sun, in a safe place, away from scavengers.  It takes longer but sounds interesting.  I’d like to see if one really can cook and egg on the sidewalk.  In a skillet,  of course.  I read in one article that the hood or roof of a car or truck, in the bed of a pickup truck or inside a vehicle, on the front or back dash are good places for faster cooking with this method.  I may try it sometime. Sounds like a good camping tip.  If you’ve ever cooked with the sun, I’d love to hear about it.

Dehydrate foods in the sun and heat.  I’m also reading up on how to sun dry fruits and veggies and how to solar dry foods with a solar box.  If you’ve ever bought sun-dried foods, you know they can be pricey.  How cool (and cheaper) would it be to get locally grown, in season fruits and veggies and preserve them for winter use by sun drying them?

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Well, that’s it for this Tip Tuesday Laugh At The Sun tips.  Except for this last one.

USE SUNSCREEN WHEN OUTDOORS, EVEN ON CLOUDY DAYS!  YOU’RE SKIN WILL THANK YOU IN YEARS TO COME.

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Do you have any heat tips you’d like to add?  Bring ’em on.  I’m sure we all could use a few more to beat the heat and use it to our advantage. 

Stay cool and hydrated, y’all!

Ginger

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