MckLinky Monday: What Are Your Strange Remedies?

When I was preparing to get married in 1996, my mom put together a book of our family recipes as a gift. It is written out by hand, in a special spiral bound book. Some recipes are from my mom, but many are from other family, grandmothers and great grandmothers (including my grandma's own Chocolate Gravy, which I will also share below. It's just a tad different from Mrs. Hart's). 

In the back of the book, "Household Hints" were written in some extra space.  Some of them may seem obvious. Some are a bit weird. But they work!  So, today, share with us some of your family secrets about healing, stain removal, or what have you.  Maybe we will all learn a thing or two!

Mrs. Sinclair's Tips & Tricks

1. Before washing your hands with soap: rub mustard on them to remove onion odor, after peeling and dicing.

2. Earwax will stop and cure a fever blister faster than anything you can buy.  (Yes, I know it's kind of gross. But, ask Mrs. Hart- her grandma told her too!)  I mean I was a skeptic. But, I have had SO many fever blisters in my life, about 5 years ago I was desperate & tried it. Earwax actually makes the sore feel sort of numb, and has prevented many from forming into big painful sores.  Just used this trick last month.  Whatever you do, just don't lick your lips.

3. If you chill candles 24 hours before burning them they will last longer and drip less.

4. Repair scratches on furniture with iodine.

5. To remove gum from your hair, rub it between 2 pieces of a chocolate bar.

6. Lemon juice and salt will remove stains from white linens.

7. To clean your coffee pot: run through 1/2c vinegar, 1 c water, and 1T baking soda. Then run through one batch of plain water.

8. Did you know if you are out of eggs you can sub half a banana mashed with 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (per egg)?  You can also substitute 1 c of applesauce for 1 c of vegetable oil, if you're out or to reduce calories.

Do any of those sound new or familiar?  I'll admit to never trying number 5, but only because I haven't had the need. Thank goodness.

Oh, about that Chocolate Gravy I promised:


  • 4 T cornstarch
  • 2 T cocoa
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • dash of salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 T butter, softened
  • 2 tsp vanilla


  1. Whisk the first 4 ingredients in a cold skillet until there are no lumps. Turn on medium heat, pour the milk into the mixture slowly, whisking until well incorporated. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until its consistency is similar to gravy, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir the butter and vanilla into the mixture until the butter is melted. Serve immediately over hot biscuits.

I have some of the best recipes & memories from this book, which I love dearly, even more so now. It's a little piece of our family's past and my very favorite recipe book.  Sorry, Pioneer Woman,  it even beats yours.

Link up with us today and share your tips!


All the best,
~Mrs. Sinclair~

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