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Simple, easy and money-saving ideas that also do something positive for the environment:

Sharpen scissors with used foil

The next time you’re baking, save the aluminum foil to give your dull scissors a makeover. Stack seven clean and dry used pieces of aluminum foil on top of each other and cut away with your dull scissors. The blades will be sharpened the more you cut the foil, and eventually you will be left with almost-as-good-as-new scissors. And remember, the aluminum foil is still recyclable, so crumple it up into a ball and toss it in your curbside bin.


Maintain your lawn mower

Whatever kind of lawn mower you have, proper maintenance should help keep it going a decade or more. Consumer Reports offers the most common ways to have your machine humming.

Mind the deck. Built-up clippings in your mower or tractor deck will obstruct airflow, leading to uneven cutting and corrosion. Dull blades make the machine rip, not slice, the grass.

• Many walk and riding mowers have a washout port for a hose; use it after every mowing, and let it dry before stowing. If you have to wash out a riding mower manually, drive the front of the tractor onto a set of automotive ramps to elevate it for easier access.

•  If you’ve neglected the washouts, scrape clumps off with a plastic putty knife.

• Sharpen the blade three times per year. For a walk mower, having a spare lets you replace a dull blade with a sharpened one at the same time. To avoid injury when removing the blade, wear heavy leather gloves, remove the spark plug wire and jam in a short two-by-four to keep the blade from turning.


By Chuck Sheppard

Latest Religious Messages: Over Easter weekend, hundreds of people visited a gum tree in a suburb of Perth, Australia, after the tree appeared to start “weeping” on Good Friday, which the faithful took to be a divine sign. For three days, the tree continued to leak water from a branch stump, provoking people to drink the “holy” water and bathe in it. “What made it exciting yesterday, a man decided to take all his clothes off and have a shower,” remarked neighbor Jacqui Bacich to 9News. The excitement died down after the Water Corporation discovered the tree’s roots had wrapped around a cracked iron water pipe about a foot underground, and the leaking water had slowly filled up a hollow part of the trunk.

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