Around the house
* Start carrying out your resolution to clean the garage during the new year. Hang less-used items on walls and ceilings. Objects that are used least should be stored overhead. Once the floor is free of clutter, the garage will look bigger and better; the same applies to basements.
* Check humidifiers. Add water, if necessary. Wide cracks in wood surfaces, wobbly furniture and static shocks are caused by a dry atmosphere.
* Brighten old paneling with a coat of paint. First, wash paneling with a heavy-duty cleanser to remove wax. When walls are dry, paint with a latex primer; paint walls with the color of your choice.
* Clean crystal and cut-glass objects. Routinely spray with window cleaner or a solution of vinegar and water and wipe dry.
* Give a stainless-steel sink sparkle. Clean and polish surface occasionally with a glass cleaner or a paste made of baking soda and water. Wipe dry between each use to avoid water spots.
In the garden
* Houseplant care: Clip trailing ivy and push back into soil. Cuttings will root and plant will have a thicker appearance. If you can't bear to cut, anchor stems in soil with U-shaped hairpins.