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Cheap ways to freshen the house

Most people want their living spaces to smell clean and fresh. However, pets, aromas from the kitchen, cigarette smoke, and other things can make a home smell bad. Here are inexpensive ways to remedy all that.

* Find the source of the bad smell and eliminate it. This could be a garbage pail sitting in the sun or sink disposal that's filled with food debris.

* Use a chunk of cedar or sandalwood in drawers and closets for a fresh woodsy smell.

* Simmer some cinnamon sticks and water in a pot on the stove.

* Dab a favorite essential oil onto a piece of fabric and stash it wherever you want a pleasant smell -- even in the car.

* Toss a used dryer sheet in the linen closet to keep sheets and towels smelling freshly washed.

* Grow herbs in a window box. When the breeze blows, the fresh smell of basil or rosemary will come into the home.

* Keep fresh flowers or plants inside the home. They'll filter the air and provide a pleasant aroma.

* Use lemons to clean the sink and kitchen surfaces for a fresh, citrus smell.

* Bake some cookies or another dessert for a wonderful aroma.

* Place a tray of fallen pine needles on a cookie sheet sprayed with a little water into a warm oven. The pine scent will fill the house.

* Push cloves into an orange. Hang the clove-studded orange on a string and place in a corner. The orange clove scent will slowly fill the room.

* Open up the windows and let fresh air in.

* Soak cotton balls in vanilla and stash around the house.

* Bathe and groom pets frequently.

* Use a favorite-scented reed diffuser, which will lightly scent the house for weeks.

* Keep a pot of water with potpourri on a wood-burning stove or radiator for a wonderful scent.