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Thompson: Keep your Christmas cards to use as gift tags next year
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Now that Christmas is over, don’t throw away those Christmas cards. Instead, cut them up and make hanging name tags for your gifts for next Christmas. You’re recycling and saving money!


New Year’s Eve is a few days away. Because of this, I think it’s important to remind you of this tip. When driving on a four lane highway at night, try not to spend a lot of time in the left lane. Why? Drunk drivers who drive on the wrong side of the highway will usually be driving in your left lane. (They think it’s their right lane). Odds are also good that they won’t have their headlights on. Be careful out there!

Do you know someone who suffers from arthritis in their hands? If so, share this great tip from Karl Schneider: “When you get your prescriptions refilled the child-proof caps are hard to get off as they are not “broken in” yet. Simply take the cap from the old container that is already “broken in” and use on the new container.” Let me add to Karl’s tip by suggesting the Web site: My wife, who is a physical therapist, put me onto this one. WrightStuff carries a lot of great products for people whose hand strength has been greatly diminished. They have gas cap wrenches, enlarged lamp switches and door knob grippers.

If there’s a younger driver in your house, make sure they know this. If you see a deer crossing the road, be prepared for other deer to follow it. I was following behind an experienced driver the other night when all of a sudden he slammed on his brakes. A deer went running across the road. The driver smartly decided to wait a few moments before taking off again. Good thing because two other deer came running out of the woods right in front of his car. An inexperienced driver would have had at least one of those two deer as a hood ornament.

If you have a cat, be sure to keep your bag of new kitty litter open and at the bottom of your clothes closet — preferably next to your dirty clothes hamper. The new litter absorbs odors. Also, having the kitty litter bag in the closet reminds you to change out the old litter. (Your cat will thank me for this tip).

My personal favorite tip of 2008: Leave a clear, glass measuring cup right-side-up in your dishwasher. If the cup is full of water, then you know that the dishes are clean. I love this tip and use it every week. Have a wonderful New Year’s Eve!

Tim Thompson lives in Gainesville. E-mail Tim your ideas for tips, tools or tricks.