Baking Soda for cleaning pans           Photo Credit: Homespothq via www.flickr.com 

Paper chase is getting worse

Have you noticed how much we are bombarded with paper nowadays?

When I draw out money at the bank from my bank account, even if with a check, I get a sheet of paper to sign and one to keep. When I pay a check into my account, I find the same formula.  The insurance companies advice me that I have or have not made a claim on my car insurance during the last three years.  They then send me a separate notice that my insurance needs to be renewed and then my insurance agent sends me a notice of how much the new insurance will cost. Then of course I get the insurance cover itself with about 16 pages of the policy attached. Multiply this by two cars and one home.  Now think about all the other discount offers that come with your daily newspaper.  And as I wrote in my ConsumerWatch 190 only 23% is recycled here in Israel.

Make it policy to check the facts in those insurance quotes

After receiving a car insurance quote in hebrew, I suggest that you check very carefully any policy – or offer of one – you receive.
That’s because the one I was sent contained the following errors:
■My son’s email address and not mine.
■The home address and zipcode was neither mine nor my son’s.
■The quote was for my husband’s car and not mine.
I didn’t keep the envelope but presumably they had addressed it to me correctly or it wouldn’t have arrived.
Coke have gone and bottled it this time

On the same subject, I want to congratulate Coca Cola on their new product – one liter bottles of Coca Cola.  Now there will be more empty bottles to be recycled or just thrown away.  Instead of buying a package of six bottles, now, to get the same quantity of drink I will be buying nine bottles.  What has happened to the glass bottles that could be cleaned and reused?

Bicarb a solution to cleaning those burnt saucepans

One of the best ways to clean burned food from a saucepan is to put in a couple of tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda, add a small quantity of boiling water and leave overnight to soak.

Bicarbonate of soda is sold in supermarkets in small packages of 50 gram and can cost around NIS 2–3.   In Levinsky Street, South Tel Aviv, you can buy the soda by weight and I paid about NIS 20 for a kilo.  It’s worthwhile finding out in your area where you can buy this and other spices by weight or in larger quantities.

A not-so-instagran living in the Instagram age

I now know what is an Instagram and Wikipedia has it wrong.   It is when your grandchild rings you from his smartphone when you are just opening the oven or in the middle of making a cake or having a shower.  He lets the phone ring three times and closes and does not ring again.  When you finally find out who rang you, the first question he asks is, "why didn't you answer"?  My explanation that in the summer I usually do not wear trousers and my dresses do not have pockets, and in any case I was in a situation that I could not answer, apparently is insufficient.

Discount offers add up to quite a saving 

A friend asked me if it was worth my time going through all the many discount offers to save a few shekels.  I do not remember, and I am talking about years ago, when I last paid more than NIS19.90 for a jar of 200 gram of Tasters Choice coffee which we finish in three weeks or less – the full price being between NIS 35 – 42, thereby saving NIS 338 a year on one item only. Also, consider the discount on Kleenex toilet paper which I buy when it is at NIS19.90 and recently even less: two for NIS 32.90; bottles of Heinz's Ketchup of 1kg for 12.90 and even occasionally two of 700gm for NIS 12.90.  I refer to items that we use on a more or less daily such as Java Economica 4-liter container at NIS 9 instead of NIS 17. In my monthly budget these savings add up to quite a big sum.

My smart way to keep numbers

As I am not very up to date with my Smartphone, I carry on with a system of information that I find very useful.  Several years ago, I bought a 160-paged notebook to write down all those phone numbers and recommendations that I may or may not need in the future.  I sometimes also write down who gave me the information, so that I can check it out again if necessary.  

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About the author

Naomi Ariel

Born in U.K. "within the sound of Bow Bells", Naomi Ariel was brought up in Essex. She first visited Israel for a few years in the mid 50's and lived and worked in Moshav Kfar Mordechai. She return...
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