Renovation & Design

There's more than one way to prep a baking sheet

MatThew Mead / Associated press files

These are some of the items that can help you make cookies like a baking professional.

Question: I refuse to use non-stick cooking spray, as I think it is unhealthy. Do you have any suggestions of other easy ways to grease a baking sheet?


Answer: Tear off a piece of wax paper or parchment paper. Add a dollop of grease — margarine, butter or shortening — to the pan. Smear the grease onto the bottom and sides of the pan. You can also enlist a paint or pastry brush for this task. Or if you use sticks of butter, use the paper that holds the sticks to grease pans. Add flour if you would like to add an extra barrier between the pan and the batter. Hold the pan upside down over the sink and tap the bottom to remove excess flour. Instead of greasing pans, another great option is to cover pans with parchment paper. Doing this will really increase the life of your pans. Both rolls and precut squares are available in grocery, department and dollar stores.


Question: When I drive, I like to take coffee with me. Sometimes the liquid spills out of the mug and dries inside the cup holders. Any idea how I can clean the cup holders?


Answer: A little dish soap and water will clean the holders. Dry the holders with a soft cloth. Extra tip: to prevent future spills, place silicone muffin cups inside drink holders to protect the car from suffering through any more nasty, dried-on spills. Remove the silicone muffin liners occasionally, and wash them in the sink.


Question: I have ivy growing on the side of my house. How do I get rid of all the little stem pads the plant uses to attach to the walls?


Answer: There is no one special formula to kill ivy pads. The waxy protective coating on the plant makes it very difficult to get rid of the pads as well. Herbicides are not always successful in killing the pads, but you can spray the areas you don’t want. Or use a stiff brush and dish soap to scrub the wall, and hopefully destroy the stems. Rinse with water.

Question: I just installed a new patio door and I am trying to remove the sticker from the glass. I can’t find any solutions.


Answer: All you need to do is spray WD-40 onto the glass. Wait 10 minutes and scrape with a plastic putty knife. Wash window as usual.

Note: Every user assumes all risks of injury or damage resulting from the implementation of any suggestions in this column. Test all products on an inconspicuous area first.

Reena Nerbas is a popular motivational presenter for large and small groups; check out her website: Ask a question or share a tip at



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