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Free fries at Arby's on Tax Day

ArbyfryTuesday is tax day. Would you like free fries with that?

 All Arby’s locations will give away one free snack-sized Curly Fry Tuesday.

 You’ll need a coupon, which you can find on the Arby’s website, Facebook page or Twitter feed.

 Click here to find your closest Arby's location.

 

---Samantha Maziarz Christmann

DIY laundry soap, 12 cents per gallon

Laundry

When it comes to laundry soap, would you rather buy Tide for 11 cents per ounce or make your own for 12 cents per gallon?

The choice is up to you, but if you decide to go the DIY route, here's a great, simple recipe I've used with great success. You'll get 10 gallons for $1.21.

Diysoap

   Ingredients:

   4 cups hot tap water

   1 bar Ivory Soap ($2.49 for four)

   1 cup Washing Soda ($2.89 for 55 ounces)

   1/2 cup Borax ($3.39 for 76 ounces)

  Dissolve

1.) Grate the ivory soap into a saucepan with the 4 cups water. Stir continuously over medium to low heat until the soap dissolves.

  Bucket

2.) Fill a five-gallon bucket halfway with hot tap water. Add the melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir until powder is dissolved. Fill the bucket the rest of the way with more hot water. Stir it, cover it and let it thicken overnight. This will create a concentrated "sludge."

  Sludge

3.) For ease of use, take an empty liquid detergent container and fill it halfway with sludge. Fill the other half with water. Voila! You've got laundry detergent. Be sure to shake it before you pour.

 

Use 5/8 cup for standard top-load washing machines (makes about 180 loads) or 1/4 cup for front loaders (makes about 640 loads).

 

Note: Double check that using this detergent will not void the warranty on a front-loading washing machine.


---Samantha Maziarz Christmann

Are you ready for the XP apocalypse?

Beginning Tuesday, Microsoft will no longer provide free updates or tech support for its Windows XP operating system.

To help you through what some people are calling the “XP Apocalypse,” the Geek Squad at Best Buy has some advice.

To find out if you’re using Windows XP, click here.

When Tuesday rolls around, you won’t notice a major difference. You’ll still have all the computer programs you use and they’ll still work. But without those Microsoft updates, you’ll be vulnerable to new viruses and you won’t have “patches” to fix bugs or improve performance. You’ll also have little to no support from software makers.

Depending on how old your computer is and how capable its built-in hardware is, you might be able to just upgrade to a newer version of Windows and avoid all of those problems.

To find out if your computer can handle that, download and run the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant, which will scan your computer and tell you if upgrading is an option.

If you really, really want to keep running XP, be aware of the risks and take some steps to protect yourself. PC World has some great advice here.

 

---Samantha Maziarz Christmann