Every house has one--a junk drawer. It’s filled with miscellaneous, often forgotten stuff that you throw in over months (or years in our case). It’s always a chore to clean the drawer out so that you know it’ll shut after you’ve retrieved what you went in there for without rearranging or stuffing everything down. You might be tempted to throw a bunch of the items away, but before you throw them out how about some alternative uses for those things, that might help you save money? I really wanted making a Rubber Band Gun to be number one on this list but my mom shot it down (no pun intended). So instead here are ten practical tips for using items you probably already have in your junk drawer.
Almost everyone has these in the junk drawer, the only question is how many can you find in there. Is your ceiling fan chain hard to reach? You can extend it with paper clips; just chain a few together and add them to the end of the chain.
Now, if you have a lot of these you should cash them in, but if you’ve just got one or two, you can check if your tires need to be replaced by using a penny. Just place a penny into one of the treads of the tire with Lincoln's head upside down. If you can’t cover the top of Lincoln’s head then your tires need to be replaced.
If we have too many pencils in the junk drawer my mom will make us take them up to our school room closet. However, if you only have a few to find another place for and you have a small plant that isn’t growing straight up you can use a pencil as a stake. Just stake the pencil into the dirt. Then gently tie the stem of the plant to the pencil with some string or old cloth. After a few weeks you can untie the pencil and remove it and your plant will no longer be growing at an angle. You can also use this trick with a ruler. Yes, we have a few of those in our drawer too.
We’ve all done it. You’re hammering in a nail and you swing a little to the side so instead of hitting the nail you hit your thumb. It hurts and it’s annoying. Well instead of using your fingers to hold the nail you can use a clothespin. If you miss you’ll hit the clothespin instead of your fingers. You could also use a pair of pliers if you find of pair of those in the drawer too.
You can also use a clothespin to clamp things together when you’re gluing them. Perhaps you’re woodworking and your clamps are just too big to use on the piece you’re gluing or maybe you’re working on a model (one of the hard ones that you have to glue together). You can hold them together with a clothespin.
Here’s two cool things you can do with corks. First, if lost your bobber last time you were fishing and don’t have any spares you can make one out of a cork. All you have to do is put a staple into the cork then pull it up a little, just enough to fit your fishing line through. Then tie it in place and you have a makeshift bobber.
The second cool trick is if you’re sewing with pins but are without a pincushion you can use a cork instead. You could also use it to store tacks if you don’t have a cork board.
When you dig these out of the junk drawer just make sure they are not used. Yeah, gross, but I have two younger brothers so, you know, it happens. Tired of the hard to reach crevices on plates or around faucets that are hard to clean? You can use a toothpick. Just dip the end of the toothpick into some cleaner or alcohol and run it through the crevices.
You can also use a toothpick if you need to apply a small amount of glue to a thin object. Just dip the end of a toothpick into some glue and then apply it to where you need it. This will help you use less glue and avoid making a mess. You can do this for crafts, models or repair work.
If you have a cat or even a dog you probably know that they like to scratch or chew your furniture and walls, especially when they are puppies. Well, you can stop them using tape. Just sprinkle some red pepper flakes on the sticky side of the tape and then attach it to wherever you don’t want them to scratch. They hate the smell and taste so it will discourage them from chewing or scratching.
Okay, so now you know what’s in our junk drawer. What’s in yours? Do you call it something a little more stylish like the drawer of miscellaneous objects or something a little more suave?