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Every other Thursday, I do a miscellany post, full of small bits of frugal goodness that aren’t quite long enough to warrant their own post.
Let’s start with shoes.
Converse > Vans
We’ve been a Converse family for a few years now, but last time Joshua and Zoe needed shoes, they opted for Vans.
Oddly, the sole on Joshua’s vans started to separate from the shoe, and the separation was a bit more than was shoe-goo-able.
We bought him a pair of Converse, dropped the old Vans in Nike’s shoe recycling bin, and moved on. I figured maybe his feet were just slowing down growthwise and he’d finally managed to wear out a pair of shoes before outgrowing them.
But then six months later, Zoe’s Vans started doing the same thing.
Our Converse have never done this, even when they’ve been worn for a couple of years. And since we’ve had this problem with two pairs of Vans now, I’m wondering if they’re just not made quite as well.
Even though she loved her galaxy Vans, Zoe decided to pick a pair of Converse to replace them. “The Vans just seem to wear out too much, Mom.”
So, for what it’s worth, Converse seem to be longer-wearing than Vans, and if you’re waffling between the two, I’d lean toward Converse.
Oatmeal Fixes Wet Cell Phones
Lisey owns an iPhone 4S (which we bought refurbed and which used to be Mr. FG’s). It’s not in service with Ting yet, so it’s basically like an iPod for her at this point.
Anyway, she was at a friend’s house, and her phone accidentally went through the washer. The friend put it in rice right away, but it wasn’t working after a night of cozying up to the rice.
When Lisey got home, I did some googling and read that oatmeal is actually more absorbent than rice, so I put it into a dish with oatmeal and wished it well.
After a day in the oatmeal, we were able to get the phone to take a charge and we could get it to the restore screen, but we kept getting errors when we tried to restore it.
We’d kind of lost hope at this point, but we put it back in the oatmeal and forgot about it for a week or two.
Then Mr. FG tried again, and tada! It worked! Her phone went through the restore process, and she’s back in business. Nothing is malfunctioning at all, and she is quite relieved.
(Her phone was in an Otter-box-like case when it went through the wash, which was probably its salvation. Otherwise it would have gotten very wet.)
So. The most sensible thing is to not get your phone wet.
But accidents happen, and if you’re in just such an unfortunate situation, do give oatmeal a try. It’s nigh onto free and it worked for us!
A hammer fixes dented Klean Kanteens
We love our Klean Kanteens around here. They’re quite indestructible as far as water bottles go, but they do have one little flaw, which is that they dent if you drop them onto a hard surface (especially if they are heavy and full of water).
If the dents are on the bottom, this can make the kanteen rather wobbly, and several of ours were suffering from this condition.
My sister mentioned hammering hers into shape the other day, and I thought, “Ooh! What a bright idea!”
Joshua’s Kanteen was pretty wobbly on the bottom, so he got out a hammer and gently pounded it back into shape. And he fixed Zoe’s too.
A reusable Valentine option at See’s Candies
Reader Millicent emailed to tell me that when you buy the red satin heart box of See’s candies, you can save it and bring it back the next year to get refilled.
She said her husband typically gets an $11 discount, and that the satin heart box is a special tradition at their house, kind of like a manger scene is for some families at Christmas.
I love this idea! It makes a Valentine’s box of candies almost waste-free, it saves some money, AND I love that her husband can fill the box with exactly the candies he knows she likes.
We don’t have See’s candies shops here on the east coast, but I thought I’d mention it for any of you who do happen to live in See’s territory. And I know it’s the wrong time of year to share this, since Valentine’s day has passed, but hey, tuck it away for next year.
Alrighty! That wraps up this week’s edition of Frugal Miscellany.
Readers, I’m curious if any of you have experienced the same issue with Vans. And I’m also interested to hear if you have any stories of resurrecting wet cell phones, oatmeal or not.