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Looking Back - Oct. 2, 2011

Photo by Vicki Harris

Photo by Vicki Harris

Each week Albany Herald researcher Mary Braswell looks for interesting events, places and people from the past. You can contact her at (229) 888-9371 or mary.braswellalbanyherald.com.

In honor of The Albany Herald's 120th anniversary and seeing as how today starts National Newspaper Week, here are 120 suggestions as to what to do with your newspaper -- including reading it!

  1. Read it!

  2. Share it!

  3. Shred pages of the paper and use for packing fragile items to be shipped.

  4. Place sheets of newspaper on your windshield to prevent icing.

  5. Newspapers are great for use in window cleaning.

  6. Stuff hats to help them keep their shape.

  7. Roll papers and secure in the middle with a rubber band. Fringe one end to remove cobwebs -- this can be attached to a broomstick or dowel rod to reach high places.

  8. Before storing leather purses, stuff with newspapers to keep the shape and absorb any moisture present.

  9. Gently wrap green tomatoes in newspaper to encourage ripening.

  10. Line the bottom of the bird cage.

  11. Wrap and store Christmas ornaments. It can be fun to look at the news from years gone by when decorating for the big day.

  12. By rubbing the lead on newspaper, a previously sharpened but dull pencil can get a new point.

  13. Use newspaper for paper mache creations.

  14. In a pinch, several thickness of paper will serve well as a potholder.

  15. Newspaper works wonderfully as a tablecloth liner.

  16. Use several sheets folded as the liner for a cat litter box. It will help absorb both moisture and odor.

  17. Roll and twist a few sheets to mimic kindling and help start a fire.

  18. Make a kite.

  19. Donate stacks of newspaper to the local Humane Society to use as lining in small animal cages.

  20. Cut newspaper into squares of various sizes to use for origami.

  21. Roll up a newspaper to make a megaphone.

  22. Keep color inserts for children to cut and glue into collages.

  23. Place newspaper on the floor in front of the oven when cleaning to catch any greasy drips.

  24. Make a collage of newspaper items -- words, headlines, etc. -- and take a photograph. Size to any size desired and frame. These prints are especially eye-catching with black frames on a white wall.

  25. Tack newspaper in desired thickness to the inside of the doghouse as insulation.

  26. Fill holes or cracks in sheetrock with newspaper then mud over and paint.

  27. When housebreaking a new puppy, use newspaper as pads rather than expensive store-bought ones.

  28. Crumple up several sheets of newspaper and toss them in the cooler/ice chest after each use. This will wick moisture and odors.

  29. When shampooing area rugs, place newspaper underneath to protect the floor.

  30. While you may desire something a bit more attractive in the kitchen, using newspaper as shelf and drawer liners in the garage is a great idea.

  31. When gardening, scrubbing the floor or working on the car, use newspaper to make disposable knee pads.

  32. Crumple up a few sheets and put them in the bottom of your artificial flower vase. This will support the flowers and make arranging them easier.

  33. Stuff crumpled up papers in wet shoes for overnight drying.

  34. Tape thick newspaper over a broken window pane while awaiting repair.

  35. A rolled up newspaper makes an excellent fly-swatter.

  36. Wrap water pipes and seal with tape to help prevent freezing in cold weather.

  37. Line garbage cans with 3-4 layers of newspapers to catch spills (and odors).

  38. Use newspaper to sop grease spilled in the oven or on the stovetop.

  39. Patterns for dressmaking or woodworking can be cut from newspaper.

  40. Make a hat.

  41. Newspaper can be used as a light reflector when taking photographs.

  42. Use wadded up sheets of newspaper to stuff socks for puppets.

  43. Roll papers into two cones. Ball up another piece and toss back and forth trying to catch it with the cone.

  44. Lay a single sheet of newspaper on a flat surface. With your palm flat on the paper, crumple up the paper as best you can. This exercise strengthens the hand is an simple and inexpensive therapy for hand injuries or stroke victims.

  45. Roll up the paper and place under the door to keep out cold air.

  46. Stuff wads of paper in old suitcases to remove musty smells.

  47. Cut into half page size and use with children when traveling for a word search.

  48. Wrap frozen food containers such as ice cream in newspaper when transporting.

  49. Cover workspace when crafting and or painting ... a good idea for adults and children.

  50. If your car is stuck in the mud, snow or sand, several thicknesses under the drive wheel can often provide just the needed traction to get the vehicle moving.

  51. Save the color Sunday comics for wrapping paper.

  52. Make a scrapbook for your child or grandchild. Include the wedding announcement of the parents, birth announcements and any other items relating to important people and events in the child's life.

  53. Cover the cutting board with newspaper when chopping/slicing messy food items.

  54. Need a funnel? Make one from newspaper ... but only for dry goods.

  55. When camping out, especially directly on the ground, lay several layers of newspaper under the sleeping bag. This helps with warmth and will also keep the bag clean.

  56. Transport fresh flowers in dampened newspaper to help keep them fresh.

  57. If your car has a leak, place newspaper on the floor of the garage or driveway to catch the fluid.

  58. Crumple up 2-3 small pieces of newspaper and put them in a small sock. Tie off the top for a quick and inexpensive cat toy.

  59. On a really rainy day, have a mud mat ready at the doorway to help catch the wet and muddy shoes.

  60. Place a sheet of newspaper between vinyl records when storing.

  61. Level a table with folded up newspaper.

  62. Place newspaper over the area when using a deep fryer to catch splatters.

  63. Be creative by using newspaper to create apparel or Halloween costumes.

  64. Newspaper can be used to polish furniture and leaves no lint behind.

  65. Cover windows of a vacant building and/or a building under renovation.

  66. Several sheets of paper under an area rug keep the room warmer and extend the life of the rug itself.

  67. Use newspaper as a desk blotter.

  68. A rolled up newspaper is a good dog training tool and, unless used with excessive force, will not hurt the animal. After several swats, most dogs only need to be shown the paper.

  69. Newspaper can be rolled around a baby bottle as insulation.

  70. Keep the car cleaner by putting newspaper in the floorboards on a snowy or rainy day.

  71. At an outdoor event, the newspaper can be used as a sunshade.

  72. Place a sheet or two on the snow and sprinkle bird seed for your feathered friends.

  73. Fold the paper into an accordion fan.

  74. Newspapers make fine dustpans.

  75. Outside plants can be covered by newspaper to prevent frost damage.

  76. Let a child sit on a stack of newspapers in the absence of a booster seat.

  77. Fold several thicknesses of newspaper to make a sheath for a knife.

  78. Show a child how to cut paper dolls from newspaper-what a joy!

  79. When painting window trim, dampen newspaper and stick to the glass. Once finished, remove and discard the paper.

  80. Wrap a small strip of newspaper around the base of a candle to help it fit snugly in the holder.

  81. When leaving home for an extended period, furniture can be covered with newspaper to ward of dust and even musty smells.

  82. Shape newspapers into small pot shapes-does not need to be perfect-germinate seeds then plant the entire pot.

  83. Shred newspapers and add to the compost bin.

  84. Clip recipes from the paper and create your own cookbook or one for a friend.

  85. When caught in the rain, use your newspaper as a make-shift umbrella.

  86. Line the vegetable drawers of the refrigerator. This makes for easy cleanup and absorbs food odors.

  87. Buy inexpensive finger paints and let the kids paint on newspaper.

  88. Newspaper is an excellent material to use for weed control in the garden. Place it around the base of plants and in-between rows, cover with mulch and water.

  89. Tear strips of newspaper and glue onto a cheap picture frame. Spray with a sealer or brush on a simple three-parts glue, one-part water solution. Let dry and frame a black and white photograph. Makes a great gift.

  90. Make a paper boat, or two.

  91. Make paper chains and stars for the Christmas tree.

  92. Newspaper is fine for wrapping fish -- most inks are soy-based.

  93. Several thicknesses of newspaper serve well for a cutting board, especially for onions and garlic. The entire mess can be composted and the odors are not stuck in the regular cutting board.

  94. Use folded up newspaper to separate and cushion canning jars when packing.

  95. When having a low country boil, simply cover your picnic table with newspaper and dump the food on the table. This makes for a very easy clean-up.

  96. To keep boot tops standing upright, stuff each one with rolled up newspapers.

  97. Deodorize Tupperware and Rubbermaid containers by sealing balled up newspaper inside overnight. This will also work with a Thermos.

  98. Blow up a balloon and paste strips of paper over the entire surface 2-3 layers thick. Let the balloon dry completely then pin-pop the balloon. Paint the surface as you wish then carve into a bowl or create a pinata.

  99. To clean window screens, tape newspaper to the outside of the screen then vacuum from the inside.

  100. Fold newspaper into airplanes.

  101. Buy inexpensive gift bags. Place the gift in the bag and stuff with shredded color sale ads.

  102. Clean a wax spill from carpet by laying down a layer of newspaper and gently ironing (medium heat) the paper. It may take several sheets but the wax will come up.

  103. Delicate antique glass can be gently cleaned with one part each of white vinegar and warm water. Use newspaper to wipe the surfaces.

  104. Use a few sheets of newspaper between you and those cold aluminum seats at the ball game.

  105. Always place newspaper under paper towels when draining fried foods for greater absorption.

  106. Use newspaper to wipe paint brushes before cleaning them. This will make the cleaning easier because there will be less paint left in the brush.

  107. Place a sheet in a jar lid to tighten loose seals.

  108. Lamp shades can be made from newspaper and decorated. This is an easy item to change often.

  109. If you find yourself a bit chilly in the recliner, just cover up with the newspaper for a toasty nap.

  110. Cut nine, 9-by-1/4-inch strips from a piece of your newspaper. Loop one end of a strip into the middle, and then loop in the other end. Stick the brass fastener through the center (where the two loops meet) to secure. Repeat the same process until all strips are used then spread the prongs. This is a recycled newspaper bow!

  111. Tape newspapers over cabinet doors when canning or freezing vegetables- especially when cutting corn from the cob. The paper will catch the fruit or vegetable juices and make clean up a snap.

  112. If you have a pair of leather shoes that have stretched with age, stuff them with newspaper. This will absorb moisture-often just enough for the shoes to be once again comfortable.

  113. Save comic strips, crosswords (unsolved) and/or Sudoku puzzles and glue into small notebooks. When a friend is in the hospital, these make great little gifts to help pass the time.

  114. Stretch your dollars by mixing shredded newspaper with cedar shavings in small pet cages like hamsters and gerbils.

  115. Clean smoked up glass fireplace doors with damp newspaper dipped in the ash from the fire. Once the dirt has been removed, polish with dryer newspaper for a smear free finish.

  116. For a small bleeding wound, tear off a piece of newspaper and apply it to the wound. The newspaper will stop the bleeding. Leave it on for a few minutes. Moisten with water to remove the newspaper to prevent new bleeding.

  117. Serious scrapbooking can cost hundreds of dollars for those cute precut decorations. Try cutting letters and words from the newspaper to save money.

  118. If that door just will not stay open, quickly fold up some newspaper for a makeshift door stop.

  119. While rolls of paper can be purchased at home improvement stores, putting down newspaper before installing any type of new floor will cut down on noise and add a bit more insulation under your feet.

  120. Have an old-fashioned paper drive. This has to be a well-planned project to be successful, but there are buyers out there who will pay for old newspapers!