Tuesday, August 1, 2017

HEARTH AND HOME Newsletter - August 2017

Greetings, Dear Friends!

Welcome to the August 2017 issue of Rebecca's HEARTH AND HOME newsletter! I trust that you had an enjoyable July and that lots of sweet summertime memories were made by you and your family. 🎾🏊🎒🎣

How was July's weather where you live? Here in Southwest Missouri most of the month was super hot with daytime temperatures topping out in the mid- to upper-90's with heat indexes well into the 100+ degrees with nights in the mid- to upper-70's. I'm hoping that August is a wee bit cooler. 🌞

August is another big birthday month for our family. Two of our sons (the oldest and the youngest) celebrate birthdays within the first week, as does one of our granddaughters; two more granddaughters and myself follow close behind. Our oldest daughter and son-in-law celebrate their 15th wedding anniversary this month also...so...Happy Birthday wishes to our boys πŸŽ‚πŸŽ‚ and grandgirls πŸŽ‚πŸŽ‚πŸŽ‚ and Happy Anniversary to our daughter and son-in-law! πŸ’“πŸ’“

Okay, Ladies, I need your help. I am really excited about getting back to blogging and putting out a regular monthly issue of the HEARTH AND HOME Newsletter, but I could sure use some extra input. If any of you have household tips, money saving ideas, recipes, or craft ideas that you'd be willing to share, I'd love to hear from you. If I end up using your submission I will credit you in the post. 

Please mail your household tips, money saving ideas, craft ideas, or recipes to me at: proverbs31heart@yahoo.com. Be sure and put HEARTH AND HOME SUBMISSION on the subject line so I don't miss it. Thank you! 😊

Okay...so are you ready to dig into this issue? If so, grab a glass of something cool and let's get going...


* Peel boiled eggs the easy way (I just discovered this and it really works!!!) - after cooking and cooling eggs, put them in a small pan with a lid and fill with water. Put the lid on and, while holding tightly in place, violently shake eggs in the pan. Shells, literally, slip right off.

* Put rubber bands around the ends of hangers to prevent clothes from slipping.

* Perk up limp lettuce leaves by soaking them in a bowl of cold water mixed with a splash of lemon juice; keep in the fridge for about an hour. They'll be as good as fresh!

* Make a dull pair of scissors like new again by simply making several cuts into a piece of fine sandpaper.

* Clean your window screens without removing them by gently wiping them every couple of weeks with an old pair of nylon stockings. The nylon scrubs off the dust without damaging screens.

* White vinegar is the simplest fabric softener there is. Try using 1/4 to 1/2 cup straight white vinegar in your final rinse load.
* To eliminate grease in your dish water, add a splash of white vinegar to every load. It disinfects, too!


"A penny saved is a penny earned." 
~Benjamin Franklin

How true this saying is and it's one of my absolute favorite quotes. It's amazing how fast little things can add up over time to make big savings! Likewise, it's amazing how fast spending a little bit here and little bit there can drain your pocketbook in no time!

One of the ways that I used to save a lot of money was by making my own cleaning products. When I started working and my dad got so sick all that stopped. I need to get back to it. It didn't take long to do and it resulted in big savings compared to what I'm doing now...which is buying pre-made products straight off the store shelves! 😞

Here are my favorite homemade cleaning supplies and every one of them works as well (or better) than their store-bought equivalent. 

Powdered Laundry Detergent

1 cup grated Fels Naptha Soap
1/2 cup washing soda
1/2 cup 20 mule team borax

Mix and store in airtight container or bag. For light loads, use 2
tablespoons. For heavy loads, use 3 tablespoons.


Mix in a spray bottle:

1 T. ammonia
1 T. liquid laundry detergent
2 cups of water

This recipe costs virtually nothing to make and, in my opinion, works as well or better than the 409 All-Purpose Cleaner that I used for years (and am using again...argghh!). 


Mix in a spray bottle:

1 cup rubbing alcohol
1 cup water
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon ammonia

This is the best glass cleaner EV-ER and it's streak-free!


1/2 cup of borax
1/2 cup of baking soda
1 teaspoon of cloves and/or cinnamon (cloves help keep moths out of the closet too)

Or, if you've got pets, instead of the spices, use about 20-25 drops of sweet orange oil (I use the spices AND the orange oil), which is a natural flea repellent; be sure to mix in the oil into powder mixture thoroughly and never use directly onto your pets.


Last December I purchased several regular-sized, red and white, felt, Christmas stockings on markdown at Walmart for a quarter a piece. I want to do something special with them this year, but I don't know exactly what. I am looking for ideas on how to use or decorate them.  

If you have any ideas to share, please, leave a comment below or e-mail me @ proverbs31heart@yahoo.com with your ideas. Please put: CHRISTMAS STOCKING IDEAS on the subject line, so I won't miss it. Thank you! πŸŽ„



1 cup flour
4 tsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 tsp. ground mustard
1/2 tsp. black pepper
8 chicken breast halves, skinned, deboned, pounded to 1/2 inch thick, cut into
1 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 c. olive oil

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a ziplock bag. Add chicken, a few pieces at a time, and shake to coat. Heat oil in a skillet; cook chicken, turning frequently, until browned and juices run clear, about 6-8 minutes. 


With an abundance of summer produce in season, it's time to pull out some of my favorite zucchini recipes!


When my friend, Sandy, (who lives in California now) and I were teenagers we used to make this a lot. Whenever I talk to her on Facebook now, she often brings up how much she enjoyed it. One night recently I made it and sent this picture to her. Maybe someday we will be able to sit down and share a plate of cheesy zucchini together again in person.

To make...

Wash and peel zucchini. Slice into 1/4 inches slices, roll in flour, and fry in skillet of hot oil. Salt and pepper, turn when browned on one side. Let cook until browned on the other, remove from skillet, and layer in a warm casserole dish. Cover zucchini slices with slices of American or Velveeta cheese. Continue to fry zucchini, adding oil as needed, then layer zucchini, cheese, zucchini, cheese, until you have as much as desired. Make the final layer cheese. Keep warm in the oven until ready to serve.


With starting Trim Healthy Mama this month I'm going to be eating a lot of these!

To make...

Use a Veggetti or some other spiral noodle maker to spiral-cut zucchini into noodles. Toss in boiling water for one minute, or saute in butter or coconut oil, if preferred. Top with sauce and eat in place of spaghetti, or top with garlic, Parmesan, and/or other seasonings of your choice. 


Blend together thoroughly with wire whisk in large mixing bowl:

2 eggs
2/3 cup honey
2 cups grated, unpeeled zucchini

Blend dry ingredients together in separate bowl:

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/4 cup unbleached white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
scant 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Blend dry and wet ingredients just until mixed. Fill muffin cups almost full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 5 minutes before removing muffins from pan. DELICIOUS!!!


PREP: 15 minutes; BAKE: 1 hour
Makes 2 loaves, 24 slices each

3 cups shredded zucchini
1 2/3 cups sugar
2/3 cup vegetable oil (I use olive oil)
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 large eggs
3 cups white or wheat flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup raisins, if desired

Move oven rack to low position so that tops of pans will be in center of oven. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottoms only of 2 regular loaf pans or 1 large loaf pan.

Mix all ingredients; pour batter in pans.

Bake 8-inch pans 50 to 60 minutes; 9-inch pans 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Well, Ladies, that's it for this time! I'll see you in September! (Wait a minute! Isn't there a song by that title???) 😲 LOL! πŸ˜†

Until Next Time...


  1. I will definitely have to make that fried zucchini and cheese dish--It looks beyond yummy--I'd probably eat the leftovers cold for breakfast to be honest :)

    1. To be honest on this end...it is beyond yummy and I wouldn't blame you a bit if you ate the leftovers cold for breakfast! Enjoy! :)

  2. It's so good to see you are writing the column again! Woo hoo! She's back!
    Someone once told me, "Always have your hand in the next meal." She meant always be preparing ahead of time. So remember to soak the beans tonight for tomorrow's meal. Cook the rice ahead of time. That kind of thing.

    God bless!

    1. I know! Two months in a row! Right??? LOL! Well...it helps having a friend who takes it upon herself to say right out loud (in the middle of a medical facility waiting room in a normal tone of voice), "Rebecca, you need to get back to blogging!" and to know that, through my blog, I had actually encouraged someone else. It fueled a fire in me that had just about gone out. Thank you! And, yes! Very good advice about always having "your hand in the next meal"! Thanks for always be so kind and for always taking the time to comment. It means a lot! Love you! <3

  3. Why am I suddenly hungry for Zucchini? I really enjoyed reading your newsletter. Interesting to read about the orange oil repelling fleas. If we ever get carpet again (hardwood floors right now), I'll have to remember that!

    1. LOL! I hear you, Jean! I'm in zucchini heaven here (we don't have a garden this, but have good friends who do). Worked up a basket-full into zucchini noodles for the freezer last night. So delicious! And, yes, the orange oil works really well. Have a great rest of the week! Blessings!


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