Around the house
* When painting the interior of your house, record the color and the amount used by writing the information inside a switch plate. The information will be at your fingertips when you're ready to paint again.
* Prevent plugs from pulling away from extension cords. Tie both wires together before plugging in; the more you pull, the tighter the connection.
* Keep packets of alcohol swabs on hand. Use them to clean eyeglasses and thermometers. Rid house plants of aphids by running the swabs along infected stems.
* Seal small holes in window screens with clear cement glue. The repair will be invisible.
* Get maximum efficiency from your window air conditioner. Use exhaust fans when needed to reduce demand on the unit. A light-colored roof will reflect sun, reducing heat in your attic and living spaces. Make sure the air conditioner is on the shady side of the house.
* Prevent mildew in shower. Keep windows open, avoid prolonged use of hot water and keep a squeegee in the shower stall to dry the walls.
In the garden
* Treat hosta garden for potential threat of slugs that can devour new growth in a short time. Apply a thin layer of cat litter around new foliage (beware of neighborhood cats). Check leaves periodically during early evening when slugs begin to appear. If there's an infestation, set out shallow bowls of beer between the plants. The beer will lure slugs into the bowls, where they drown.