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Substitute and Solve - Noisy woodpecker drills satellite dish

Dear Reena,

A banging sound woke me up at 5 a.m. every day this week. I now realize that a woodpecker is pecking my satellite dish. What can I do to stop him? I can’t sleep (the words BB gun come to mind). Thanks, Alfred

Dear Alfred,

Although I understand that you need your sleep and the sound is annoying (for not only you but your neighbours as well), please don’t shoot the bird. Yes, he loves hearing the tapping sound that he creates, but he will eventually go away on his own. Here are a couple of suggestions to speed up the result: Mount a plastic owl as close as possible to the dish or cover the dish with cloth, mesh or wire in a way that won’t hinder the signal. Or mount a pole near the dish with strips of garbage bags so that the strips move with the wind.

Dear Reena,

Our golden chenille-type couch had a stain on the inside of the arm. My husband wiped it off with a damp cloth. Now we can’t get rid of the water stain circle where the old stain was. Help — this is a gorgeous and very expensive couch. What can we do? Elaine

Dear Elaine,

Take an old rag and dampen it with white vinegar. Wipe the entire couch with the cloth so that it blends together. Air dry; the stain will soon be a distant memory.

Dear Reena,

Even though I always add two or three eggs, whenever I make hamburger patties for barbecuing, they fall apart. What am I doing wrong? Kurt

Dear Kurt,

Is it possible that you are purchasing lean meat such as ground sirloin? If this is the case, try something a little fattier to bind the meat together. Also, eggs are not a necessary ingredient in making hamburger patties; in fact, it sounds as though the liquid in the eggs might be another factor in your hamburger horrors. Added note: For best patty flavour, grill on medium heat and avoid flipping the burgers often. And don’t press them down with the spatula — you will lose the flavour of the juices.

Barbarian’s BBQ Sauce:

Summer is here; so load up your burger and smother your steak with this flavour-packed BBQ sauce. Into a pot combine the following: one cup balsamic vinegar, half-cup ketchup, one-third cup brown sugar, one teaspoon. fresh garlic (minced), one and a half tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, one tablespoon Dijon or regular mustard powder, pinch salt and pepper. Heat and stir on medium for 15 minutes. Brush onto pork, chicken or beef.

Reena Nerbas is a rural Manitoba home economist is a lab coat - and she’s not afraid to use it. Keep your questions coming:

» householdsolutions@mts.net

(204) 320-2757

reena.ca

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition May 29, 2014

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Dear Reena,

A banging sound woke me up at 5 a.m. every day this week. I now realize that a woodpecker is pecking my satellite dish. What can I do to stop him? I can’t sleep (the words BB gun come to mind). Thanks, Alfred

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Dear Reena,

A banging sound woke me up at 5 a.m. every day this week. I now realize that a woodpecker is pecking my satellite dish. What can I do to stop him? I can’t sleep (the words BB gun come to mind). Thanks, Alfred

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