Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about people who think they are
entitled to push others aside instead of waiting for their turn. -
“Dear Heloise: Yesterday, I was waiting at a deli counter, along with a
few other people, when a man walked up to the counter and started to rap
his large ring on the glass case to demand attention. The deli man
walked over to me to take my order (I was next in line), and the man
started to slowly shove me aside to place an order. I won’t bore you
with what I said, but I made it clear he could wait for his turn like
everyone else. If this had been a medical emergency, I wouldn’t have
minded, but it was a local deli counter. When did people start losing
their manners? Being obnoxious isn’t cute, and women don’t respect men
who act rude, crude or low-class.” - Monica N., Atlantic City, N.J.
Dear Readers: Here are a few suggestions to brighten up your home for
very little money:
Replace old cabinet doorknobs with new ones.
Buy new throw pillows for the sofa.
Paint the front door a nice, new, pretty color.
Plant flowers in the front yard.
Change out old lampshades for new ones.
Declutter your home from top to bottom.
Dear Heloise: I took my dog to the vet and discovered he had heartworms.
My dog is now on medication to kill the worms, but my vet said dogs
should be tested annually. Apparently, cats can also develop heartworms.
This is preventable! “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,”
as my granny used to say. Ask your vet if your cat or dog should be on
heartworm medication, or check with www.heartwormsociety.org for more
information. - Connie L., Tulsa, Okla.
Dear Heloise: Sometimes I’ll hear a song on the radio but don’t know the
name of it or the artist. However, if I type in a few words of the
lyrics to search on my computer or cellphone, the title, artist and
entire lyrics come up. - Myra D., Bellingham, Wash.
Donate pet supplies
Dear Heloise: When my mother’s cat died, Mom had two carriers, three pet
beds (two of which were new) and several cans of high-quality cat food.
I called a local animal shelter, which was so grateful to get the
donation of these items. Please tell your readers that animal shelters
always need supplies, and they welcome financial aid as well. So, if you
lose a pet, you can help these organizations out by donating items or
money to help them as they help animals. - Lana W., Jackson, Wyo.
Letter of laughter
Dear Heloise: After my handyman retired from his full-time job, he
thought he’d do just a little handyman work a couple of days a week to
keep busy and earn a little extra money. He came over to my house to fix
my faucet, and when he went out to his truck, he found 15 notes under
the windshield wipers from people needing his services. Retirement over!
- Patty T., Racine
June 5, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about people who ignore the need for
personal space. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: I was shopping the other day when I ran into a friend.
She’s a very nice person, but if she stood any closer, she’d have been
standing on my feet! I’ve met a number of people who don’t respect our
need for some personal space. At a deli counter last week, a woman stood
so close to me that we might have been mistaken for conjoined twins!
There’s no need to do this when talking to someone. Give others some
breathing room.” - Ellen R., Anaheim, Calif.
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for baby powder:
Use as a dry shampoo.
Use on sheets to help absorb nighttime perspiration.
Sprinkle in shoes to keep them fresh.
Sprinkle on a necklace to help untangle it.
What vaccines do my
Dear Heloise: Having worked at a veterinarian clinic for over 10 years,
I feel qualified to recommend the following vaccines for dogs and cats:
All dogs should get the DHPP vaccine to avoid distemper and parvovirus.
They also need a rabies vaccine. Rabies is contagious to all land
mammals, including humans.
All cats should get the FVRCP vaccine (to protect against three viruses,
including distemper), rabies vaccine and a feline leukemia vaccine. Even
if your cat does not go outside, it can still pick up this viral killer
from other animals.
Your pets are your responsibility, so vaccinate yearly.
Raymond D. in San Antonio
Dear Heloise: I have a nasty habit of forgetting appointments for things
like the doctor, hairdresser, dentist, etc., so I started writing a note
to myself on sticky notes and posting them on my bathroom mirror. Now I
no longer miss an appointment because the notes remind me.
Irene H., Beaverton, Ore.
Learn to swim
Dear Heloise: With warm weather here, a lot of children will be playing
around lakes, the ocean and swimming pools. While float toys are nice,
it’s far more important to teach your little ones to swim. If you can’t
teach them, then enroll them in a swim class so that they don’t panic
when in water over their heads.
Grace P., Gainesville, Fla.
Dear Heloise: Summertime is often miserably hot! In many states, it’s
illegal to leave your dog in the car in the heat. But whether it’s
illegal or not, don’t do it! Some people say that they roll the windows
down, but that is not helpful to the animal. If you can’t bring your pet
with you when you go indoors to a store, clinic, etc., then DON’T bring
Brianna F., Muncie, Ind.
P.S. Make certain your dog or cat is microchipped! This is especially
true if you travel with your pet.
Dear Readers: We are now getting into kitten season. If you find a stray
or homeless kitten, see if an animal organization can find a foster home
I'm not on call!
May 29, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about cosmetic promises that don’t
“Dear Heloise: Cosmetic companies promise women ‘rejuvenation’ of their
skin, hair and nails, and then use a 20-year-old model to illustrate how
well their products work. A young woman in her 20s does not need to
rejuvenate anything. Even then, the model is airbrushed to perfection.
This is a form of body shaming. If you’re over 40, have cellulite,
crow’s-feet or liver spots on your hands, are you less worthy of notice
“Many brilliant, smart, funny women are not great beauties, but they
have much to offer this world. I wish cosmetic companies would show real
women, not models in their 20s who are beautiful without makeup.”
- Kathy Y., Aberdeen, Md.
Dear Readers: Here are some other items you can use as bird feeders:
A large milk jug. Cut in half and use the bottom half for seeds.
A large plastic soda bottle.
An old teacup.
A plate you were planning to throw out.
Tax man cometh
Dear Heloise: I agree with the reader who said that property taxes are
getting too high, and I’m getting disgusted. Older citizens like myself
purchased our homes with the idea that we could remain there the rest of
our lives. However, with taxes going up all the time, I doubt I can
afford to stay here for much longer. There used to be a cap on property
taxes for low-income people, but not anymore. America is taxing senior
citizens out of their homes! - A Reader in Indiana
Some states freeze school taxes for people at age 65. Check with your
tax office to find out what can be done to help you reduce your property
taxes. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: To me, it’s inappropriate for someone to drop by for a
visit but spend all the time talking with another person on the phone.
It’s very rude, and people like that are never invited back.
- Helen R., Manhattan, Kan.
Helen, yes, it is rude. When visiting friends, turn off your phone.
You’re there to spend time with that person, not impress people with how
popular or important you are. - Heloise
It’s a shame
Dear Heloise: After working with an animal shelter for the past three
years, I would like to encourage your readers to spay or neuter their
They should know that a very small percentage of dogs and cats ever find
a “forever home,” and several hundred dogs and cats are euthanized every
hour in the U.S. because there aren’t enough people willing or able to
adopt a pet.
So please spay or neuter your pets! - Anne in San Diego
I'm not on call!
May 22, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about unwanted baby-sitting duties.
“Dear Heloise: My son and daughter-in-law seem to think I’m a handy baby
sitter. Please understand that I dearly love my grandkids, but I can’t
always baby-sit for them. I have a life that includes travel, getting
together with friends and a part-time job.
“Please let your readers know that being retired does not automatically
mean we can baby-sit for our grandkids. Some of us still need to work
part time, have physical limitations or don’t want to cancel our plans.
We’re not being obstinate; we simply cannot wrap our lives around our
children’s schedules. When I can spend time with my grandchildren I do,
and I enjoy it. At present, my daughter-in-law is not speaking to me
because I wouldn’t cancel a doctor’s appointment to baby-sit her three
kids. I’m not alone, either. Many of my friends have gone through the
same thing.” - Gloria in Wisconsin
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for coffee filters:
To polish silver.
As a bowl cover in the microwave.
Place under a plant to absorb moisture.
To clean a mirror or window.
Dear Heloise: I have a habit of removing my rings when I wash my hands
in a public place. To keep from losing them, I do one of two things: I
either put them in my pocket or thread them on the stem of my glasses. I
learned this the hard way when I forgot to put my rings back on until
after I had left a restaurant! Sadly, they were gone, and no one turned
them in to the management. - Beverly T., Mount Pleasant, S.C.
The brown and the
Dear Heloise: We use a lot of eggs in my home, so the only way I can
tell the fresh ones from the older eggs is to buy brown eggs one week
and white the next week. Works well for me.
- Patricia B., Tiverton, R.I.
Soaking your nibs
Dear Heloise: The writing end of a fountain pen is called a nib, and
here is one way to unclog it. Heat vinegar in the microwave for about 18
to 20 seconds, then place the nib in the vinegar and let it sit
overnight. The next morning, your fountain pen nib should be clean and
unclogged. - Harold F., Bellefontaine, Ohio
Police are there to
Dear Heloise: Recently, I saw a mother grab her very young son and
threaten him with calling the police and sending him to jail. The boy
couldn’t have been any older than 6 or 7. This may be a short-term way
to get him to behave, but he needs to learn that the police are there to
help him and keep him safe instead of making him terrified of a police
officer. - Barbara L., Boise, Idaho
Barbara, you’re correct. Children should NEVER be threatened with jail
as a form of punishment for misbehaving, or taught to be afraid to ask
for help from the police. - Heloise
May 15, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is from a schoolteacher who claims
students lack discipline:
“Dear Heloise: For over 20 years, I’ve taught school and seen a number
of policy changes that were enacted to help students but have had the
reverse effect. Students come to class without homework and tell me they
didn’t feel like doing it, or hand in sloppy work with grammatical
errors and terrible spelling. With poor grades and a lack of
self-discipline, they’ll never make it in college.
“How can we get parents more involved with their children? How can I
stress the importance of spending time (NOT money) with their children?”
- Lenore N. in Michigan
Lenore, parents need to put down the cellphone, turn off the TV and
computer, and spend time with their kids. Our children are the only
truly important thing we will leave behind. - Heloise
Dear Readers: Here are a few safety measures for the kitchen:
Always pat dry the foods you plan to fry. Hot grease and water cause
splattering, which can be both dangerous and painful.
Never leave cooking food unattended.
Always turn the handle on a pot away from the front of the stove to
avoid anyone knocking it off while walking by.
When taking a lid off a pot, always tilt it away from you.
Always keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen.
Dear Heloise: I have real wood paneling in my new home, but I’m worried
about cleaning it. I don’t want a waxy buildup from furniture polish.
What do you suggest? - Vera W., Harwood, Md.
Vera, I have a solution that cleans fingerprints, mild dirt and dust off
wood paneling, but as always, test on an inconspicuous place first.
Mix 1 part white vinegar with 2 parts water. Dip a clean rag in the
solution, wring it out to remove excess water and wipe the surface of
the wood. Dry and polish with a clean cloth.
If you want inexpensive cleaning ideas that work well without using
harsh chemicals, then you’ll enjoy my pamphlet Heloise’s Homemade
Cleaning Solutions. To order a copy, send $5, along with a stamped (70
cents), self-addressed, long envelope, to: Heloise/Cleaning Solutions,
P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Or you can order it online
at www.Heloise.com. FYI: Vinegar
alone also works great for removing price tags, cleaning the barbecue
grill and loosening burned-on foods in pots and pans. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: My job requires that I stand for long periods of time. By
the time I get home, my feet are killing me. I take a tennis ball and
place it under my foot while I’m seated and roll it back and forth. This
is an easy way to give my tired feet a massage. - Bernadette V.,
wedded bliss for this location?
May 8, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about destination weddings:
“Dear Heloise: Why have destination weddings become so popular? My niece
is getting married in Hawaii, which is thousands of miles from family
and friends. Neither the bride nor the groom lives in Hawaii, so it’s
not as though they’ve established a life there. Although I’ve received
an invitation, I can’t afford to go right now, nor can most of the
people invited. Even the girl my niece wanted as her maid of honor said
she can’t go since she just started a new job and can’t get the time
off. The bride’s parents aren’t happy about it, nor are the groom’s. Am
I wrong in thinking a destination wedding is a little selfish?”
- Nancy E., Waterbury, Conn.
Nancy, well, it’s inconvenient to get married so far away from family
and friends, but couples are entitled to the wedding of their choice.
Readers, what do you think about destination weddings? - Heloise
Dear Readers: Here are some uses for paper towel cores:
Wrap Christmas lights around for storage.
Store extension cords inside.
Hold plastic grocery bags.
Spray-paint silver and give to young kids to use as lightsabers.
Novel garden path
Dear Heloise: Everyone likes to have a unique yard, so for my garden
path, I used tree slices as steppingstones. My husband cut 2-inch slices
of a thick log. We lined the path with newspaper, wet it down with a
hose, then poured about 2 inches of fine sand over the newspaper. We
placed the wood slices on the sandy bed, then poured fine gravel in
between the slices. It’s easy and economical, and the newspaper keeps
weeds at bay. - Verity M., Sherman, Ky.
Dear Heloise: I love animals, but I’d really rather keep my neighbor’s
tomcat away from my garden. Is there anything that will deter this sweet
kitty from spraying my plants and flowers? - Lois G., Carson City,
Lois, try using vinegar around the outer edges of your garden, or a
sprinkling of chopped onions or chives also might do the trick. Most
cats do not like a strong scent. You can also try cayenne pepper, but
use that as a last resort. - Heloise
Crows vs. squirrels
Dear Heloise: Help! We have crows that are invading our squirrels’ tree.
What can I do to stop the crows from taking their peanuts? We refuse to
stop feeding our squirrels, but we need to get rid of the peanut-eating
crows. - Yvonne S., Covina, Calif.
Yvonne, there are a few things you can try. Hang wind chimes close to
the feeder or hang something shiny, such as a mirror or strips of metal.
Birds dislike both of these. You also can buy a plastic owl and hang it
close to the feeder or from a tree. Crows are intelligent birds, and
when they’ve found a place with food, they’ll be difficult to deter.
Good luck! - Heloise
value of older workers
May 1, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about the lack of employment for
“Dear Heloise: There are many experienced, capable people over the age
of 45 who want to continue to work, even if only part time, but no one
will hire them. We’ve kept up with technology, become experts at
problem-solving and have an old-fashioned work ethic that says you go to
work every day, on time, and do your best. Yet an employer never stops
to think that a great many of us are willing to work until we’re 70 or
75 because we’re in good health and want to stay engaged in the world
around us. We’ve made our mistakes years ago and can help others avoid
those pitfalls. So why won’t employers hire the older population of this
country?” - Peter and Lois D., Pontiac, Mich.
Peter and Lois, that’s an excellent question. With so much to offer, why
don’t employers hire more people over 50? - Heloise
Dear Readers: Here are some uses for junk mail envelopes:
Keep one in the glove compartment to hold receipts for parking, credit
Keep loose change in them for parking meters or toll fees.
Keep seeds in them for next season’s planting.
Place coupons in them so you won’t lose them before you get to the
Dear Heloise: Please tell your readers to NEVER flush anything down the
toilet other than toilet paper and anything created by their body’s
digestive system. So many items can clog the sewer system and cause a
backflow into the home. It doesn’t matter if you are on the city water
system or a septic tank, never put these things down your toilet:
grease or oil
tampons or pads
Freddie J., Springfield, Ill.
The latest scam
Dear Heloise: There’s a new scam going around that people need to be
aware of. This latest attempt to extort money from people comes in an
email - usually it looks like it’s from a friend - and claims you’ve
been looking at porn sites, which they will show to all your friends
because they have intercepted your email list of contacts. They demand
money (over $500) to just go away and leave you alone, promising they’ll
never contact you again.
The email I got looked as though it came from a friend who died three
years ago. Since I’ve never received mail from the great beyond, I
opened it to find a chatty letter from an illiterate hacker demanding
money. Since I don’t visit porn sites and never have, I’m not worried.
However, many people do go to those places on the web and shouldn’t fall
victim to this extortion and threats. - Norah in Providence, R.I.
April 24, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about people and their driving
habits. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: Driving a vehicle can become so familiar that some people
naturally get a little careless about using their turn signals, coming
to a complete stop at stop signs and tailgating other drivers. But those
pale when compared with cellphones: texting and answering calls. A
couple of years ago, on graduation night from high school, five young
girls were killed when the driver was texting behind the wheel. Five
young lives gone in only a few seconds; five families who had to bury
otherwise healthy, young daughters. If you are driving, DON’T answer
your phone and don’t text! Whatever the phone call or text is about, it
can wait until you’ve stopped driving.” - Joanie in California.
Dear Readers: Here are some new uses for transparent tape:
Repair hems when the thread has been pulled out.
Cover a label on a package to keep it from being ripped off.
When on a trip, attach a note on a mirror to tell your travel mate where
Tape prices on items at a garage sale.
Dear Heloise: My sister often sends me beautifully scented soaps for
gift-giving occasions. I always save the wrapper and put it inside my
shoes or in a drawer. I take it out when I wear the shoes. These
wrappers work as a free air freshener! - Joan, via email
Dear Heloise: I wanted to store some of my dad’s books for him, but I
didn’t want that “musty, old” smell that books can get. So, I used a
large plastic bin and placed the books inside. Then I took an old sock,
put some activated charcoal inside it and tied up the open end. I put
the sock with charcoal inside the plastic bin with the books. A year
later, the books were still as fresh as the day they were bought.
- Lucy L., Oakdale, Minn.
Hint from him
Dear Heloise: I have tried vinegar, and it works wonderfully, besides
being inexpensive and versatile. For window cleaning, I prefer to use a
squeegee versus paper towels or cloths.
clean towel is necessary to wipe the bottom edge. To avoid the
frustration of seeing streaks, I use up-and-down strokes (vertical) on
one side and side-to-side strokes (horizontal) on the opposite side.
This method eliminates the guesswork of going inside or outside if you
see streaks. - Rich H., via email
Dear Heloise: I scrub out my sink with a used dryer sheet. It has a
nubbly texture, which cleans things perfectly. I buff and dry with a
paper towel. - David R. in Oregon
children get a break?
April 17, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s SOUND OFF is about tax deductions. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: Why are there tax deductions for children? I love kids,
but I find it blatantly unfair that people with children get tax
deductions for having them, and child care tax credits, too. I realize
that at one point it was designed to help parents pay for the costs of
raising a child, but in an overcrowded world, should we really be
encouraging people to have more than one child? Cutting out the
deductions for children would give the government more money to work
with and create a much more impartial tax system.”
- Roger K., Falmouth, Mass.
Dear Readers: Here are some uses for leftover bread:
Cube bread and bake for inexpensive croutons.
Make into breadsticks by cutting into strips, then brushing with butter
or olive oil and sprinkling with seasonings. Bake until crispy.
Cube bread into very small pieces and use as a topping for casseroles.
Dear Heloise: I’m getting ready to do my spring-cleaning, but my biggest
problem involves my windows. I always make a streaky mess out of them.
Do you have any hints for clean and clear windows?
- Julia Y., Ellicott City, Md.
Julia, this is an easy one. Mix 1 cup of white vinegar with 1/2 gallon
of water, then put the solution in a clean spray bottle. Spray the
window liberally. Dry with crumpled newspaper. If you like this easy and
inexpensive solution, you’ll enjoy my six-page vinegar pamphlet that
includes dozens of hints, from cleaning and deodorizing things like
aluminum pots to removing pesticides from veggies.
To receive a copy, order it at
www.Heloise.com, or send $5, along with a stamped (70 cents),
self-addressed, long envelope, to: Heloise/Vinegar, P.O. Box 795001, San
Antonio, TX 78279-5001.
FYI: Though there are many types of vinegar, including balsamic, wine,
malt and apple cider, white vinegar is the cheapest and the best type
used for cleaning. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: When I recently went into the hospital, friends would call
and ask what I needed. I said I’d love any travel brochures they could
lay their hands on. This kept my mind off my impending surgery and
helped me plan for my next trip. I liked it better than reading
magazines that feature movie stars.
- Patricia D., Great Falls, Mont.
Patricia, what a great idea! You can lie back and visualize yourself on
your next adventure. It helps you make plans and takes you out of the
hospital atmosphere. - Heloise
Walking the dog
Dear Heloise: Last night, while walking my dog in our neighborhood, a
car came out of nowhere and nearly hit me. The fault, however, was mine.
I should have had reflective gear on myself and a flashing light on my
dog. I will now, but it was a close call. Please tell your readers that
many accidents can be avoided if people make themselves more visible
when they’re outside at night. - Lewis G., Fresno, Calif.
April 10, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about texting:
“Dear Heloise: It irks me when someone expects me to text an entire
conversation, wasting up to an hour of my busy life, when a simple phone
call would take care of it in less than 10 minutes.”
- Kaye S., Springfield, Ill.
Kaye, I know how you feel. I’ve seen people driving and texting, looking
down at their phones while crossing a busy street or ignoring a date
while they text someone else. Cellphones are handy, but they should not
take over our lives. - Heloise
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for back scratchers:
Reach things on high shelves.
Pull out items from the back of a cabinet.
Remove leaves from gutters.
Reach under a bed.
Lipstick on your
Dear Heloise: HELP! I went to kiss my husband and missed. I got lipstick
on the side of my husband’s shirt collar How can I get it out? -
Sherry L., Cocoa Beach, Fla.
Sherry, immediately place the stained area over an absorbent towel and
saturate with rubbing alcohol (test a hidden area first to determine
colorfastness), then dab the area with a cloth dipped in rubbing
alcohol. You also may have luck with a pre-wash spray. Rinse and launder
the shirt as usual.
In my Handy Stain Guide for Clothing pamphlet, you’ll find quick and
easy methods for getting rid of the most common stains, such as baby
formula, blood, grass, grease, wine and many more. You can get a copy by
sending a long, stamped (70 cents), self-addressed envelope, along with
$5, to: Heloise/Stains, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001.
Considering what clothing costs today, it’s always better to try
removing the stain rather than disposing of an otherwise usable garment.
Dear Heloise: My husband loves cookies, so I bake them fairly
frequently. I’ve found that if I make a lot of dough, I can form the
dough into one long roll, then freeze it. Anytime I want cookies, I cut
off the desired amount I want to bake.
Also, if your cookies end up too brown on the bottom, lightly rub the
bottom with your vegetable grater.
- Marcie H., Apopka, Fla.
Iron keeps clogging
Dear Heloise: I still iron my clothes, although my daughter says it’s
old-fashioned. However, my iron keeps clogging up. Any hints for this?
- Anne M., Bettendorf, Iowa
Anne, to keep your iron from clogging, use only distilled water, and
make sure you empty your iron after each use. - Heloise
Baby jar lids
Dear Heloise: I have a terrible time getting the lid off a baby food
jar. I’ve tried banging it on the edge of my countertop and running the
jar under hot water, but I can’t seem to get some of the jars opened.
- Emma Y., Westover, Tenn.
Emma, when a baby food jar won’t open, try puncturing a hole in the lid.
It will break the vacuum seal, and the lid will twist off easily. -
April 3, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about toll-free
“Dear Heloise: Many companies do not provide toll-free phone numbers to
call when you want to order something. They give you a website but not a
phone number. Some of us do not have computers, don’t want to order
online or don’t know how to use a computer. Please tell companies to
keep a toll-free number on their products.” - Donna in Pennsylvania
Donna, we receive many letters from people who would rather speak to a
person than place an order online. They may have questions that cannot
be answered on a website or simply enjoy the interaction with another
person. - Heloise
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for shower caps from hotels and
Cover bowls of leftover snacks: chips, pretzels and popcorn.
Cover vegetable trays made before a party.
Cover a hair dryer or shoes while packing for a trip.
Cover pet ears while bathing them.
Dear Heloise: I’ve noticed a new habit of couples who get married: They
don’t bother to send out thank-you notes. Recently, two friends and I
were invited to the same wedding, and two of us enclosed a
self-addressed, stamped thank-you note with the wedding card and money.
We both got our thank-you cards about a month later. The third person so
far has received nothing in the way of a thank-you.
- Ruth B., Fort Wayne, Ind.
Ruth, a bride should start her thank-you notes within days of returning
from her honeymoon. Thanking people for taking the time to shop for a
gift is not only the classy thing to do, it’s just plain good manners.
Dear Heloise: I went online to learn how to make fortune cookies (it’s
not difficult), and then on a piece of paper 3 inches long and 1/2 inch
in width I wrote out fortunes, such as: “Temptation is sometimes
mistaken for opportunity” or “Take a much-needed vacation to a sunny
place.” I placed the fortune cookies in a basket on the table during
dessert. It was a big hit because so many “fortunes” hit home with my
- Mia D., Bristol, Conn.
Mia, what a clever and original idea! - Heloise
Dear Heloise: When my husband passed away, I took all his Western shirts
and made pillows for my great-grandkids. I also gave each one a picture
of him wearing that shirt when he was holding them through the years. To
this day, they still treasure these pillows and the memories with him.
Each one of them got a different shirt and photo. - Lylis Nelson,
Voice of the people
Dear Heloise: Why are so many people angry and vocal these days? It
seems like no one is happy.
- Ralph T. (age 13), Darby, Mont.
Angry, vocal people make the news, but there are many happy people in
the world. Make up your mind to be one of them. - Heloise
March 20, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about people who
blatantly favor one child over another. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: My mother and father always favored my brother over me,
and it’s been a problem between the two of us all our lives. For
example, they sent my brother to college, though he barely squeaked by
in high school. I was fifth in my class of over 200, and they wouldn’t
give me a penny to go to college.
“Now my mother wants me to move home to take care of them (they don’t
need taking care of), while my brother lives three blocks from their
home. I refused, and they’re angry about it.
“Favoring one child over another child breeds lifelong resentment and
usually ruins any relationship that might have been possible between
siblings. The lingering resentment I’ve felt has made me grow closer to
my husband’s family than to my own.” - Linda in Florida
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for pool noodles:
Attach two pool noodles to the inside wall of the garage so you won’t
damage the car door when opening it.
Cut down the side and cut to fit a hanger to avoid creases in your
Cut down the side, then cut to fit over the springs of a trampoline.
Dear Heloise: I used to have the recipe for your pre-wash spray, but I
lost it in a flood. Would you please reprint it for me and others? -
Katie T. in California
Katie, this has always been popular with my readers because it’s
economical and easy to make. Here it is:|
Mix equal parts water, household ammonia and dishwashing (NOT
dishwasher) liquid. Place the mixture in a clean, labeled spray bottle.
Once you apply this spray to a stain, wash immediately. Keep this out of
reach of children and pets.
If you are looking for simple solutions to everyday laundry problems,
you will like my pamphlet Heloise’s Handy Stain Guide for Clothing. To
receive a copy, send $5, along with a stamped (70 cents),
self-addressed, long envelope, to: Heloise/Stain Guide, P.O. Box 795001,
San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Or you can order it online at
www.Heloise.com. Clothing lasts longer and looks better when properly
cared for. My pamphlet also has hints for laundering special-care items
and information on understanding care labels. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: I use a concentrated liquid detergent for laundry, and I
believe I’m wasting too much that’s left in the cap of the bottle. Is
there a solution? - Toni B., Mendenhall, Miss.
Toni, if the cap is plastic, throw it in with the laundry. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: My shower curtain won’t slide across the curtain rod. It
gets stuck, and I have to keep yanking it across. What can I do to fix
this? - Joan R., Clifton, Mass.
Joan, rub a bar of soap or baby oil on the shower-curtain rod. -
Where are the nurses?
March 20, 2019
Today’s Sound Off is about the lack of nurses in hospitals. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: I was a patient in a hospital recently and
was appalled by the lack of nurses on staff. My nurse greeted me and
told me to call her on my cellphone if I needed anything, then gave me
her number and left. What if I had fallen out of bed, couldn’t get up
and needed help or possibly had a stroke after surgery and couldn’t
“Hospitals charge a hefty amount of money for patient care, but I don’t
think we’re getting the care we need. It’s not that nurses aren’t
trained properly, there just are far too many patients for the limited
number of nurses available.
“There was a time when American medicine was the best in the world. But
is it still? I have every reason to believe it’s gone downhill.” -
Henry P. in Atlanta
Dear Readers: Here are some storage options for tiny items like beads,
sequins, snaps, etc.:
Empty pill bottles.
Foam egg cartons.
A compartment organizer for earrings.
Fishing tackle box.
Dear Heloise: Want more juice from a lemon or lime? Cut the fruit in
half, then cut off the bottom end and place in a citrus squeezer. -
Helen B., Sitka, Alaska
Dear Heloise: I put my outdoor flag in my washing machine to clean it,
and instead it was ruined. It shrank, and a little of the red color in
the stripes bled into the white stripes. How should I have cleaned it?
- Kay D., Columbus, Mo.
Kay, try to limit your flag’s exposure to the elements, such as snow,
rain and wind. Wash by hand with warm water and a mild soap. Thoroughly
rinse, and if storing, make sure it is completely dry. Inspect your flag
often. If it becomes too badly damaged to be flown, dispose of it
properly. Check with the Veterans of Foreign Wars or any veterans
organization on how to properly dispose of an old flag. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: There are a couple of old scams that your readers should
be aware of and take measures to protect themselves. The “Can you hear
me?” stunt is being used again. A caller assures the listener that this
is not a sales call and will ask, “Can you hear me?” DO NOT answer. Hang
up. They wait to hear you say “yes” and use your voice to OK credit
cards and other purchases. The second scam is to tell you that your
Microsoft license has expired. The caller will say to send a certain
amount of money or give a credit card number and all will be well. This
is a scam, and you should ignore it. Don’t speak; just hang up on them.
- Walter D., Amherst, Mass.
Purchase your pets online?
March 13, 2019
Today’s Sound Off is about hypochondria. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: Why is it
some people love to talk about their aches and pains nonstop? Two of my
friends seem to do nothing but complain about every little ache and
pain. They weren’t this way years ago, but as they’ve aged, it’s the
main source of conversation with them. I’ve tried changing the subject,
but they go right back to complaining about their health. After whining
about minor aches, they complain that their kids never visit them. They
drive people away with their complaints. There’s an old saying, ‘No one
wants to hear about your health unless it’s good.’ Even then, keep it to
a minimum and don’t exaggerate.
“Instead of looking for the negative side of life, look for the
positive, because it’s all around you. No one has a perfect life, and no
matter how much you have, there will always be problems of one kind or
another. How you handle those problems will determine how happy you are.
Complaining about them continuously will leave you lonely and isolated.”
- Margie in Houston
Dear Readers: Here are some additional uses for baking soda:
Sprinkle on carpets to deodorize before vacuuming.
Use in place of toothpaste.
Clean a stainless steel sink.
Open a box and place in the fridge to deodorize.
Off the hook
Dear Heloise: In the Daily American newspaper in Pennsylvania, I read
about a person who always got stuck hosting the big family gatherings.
Years ago, I had that problem, so after a Thanksgiving dinner with
everyone present, I announced that from now on, we would be taking turns
hosting the holiday dinners. I now host only once every five years. For
those who say they don’t have the room, I suggest they host at their
church hall or community building. That means no more excuses! - Mary
in Stoystown, Pa.
Mary, holidays are a lot of work, and everyone should pitch in and share
the work or take turns hosting the events. This is especially true with
large families. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: The mop head finally rusted through and fell off, but the
handle is still useful. I threaded a folded napkin in the top and now
use it to clean the dust bunnies out from under the refrigerator.
- Norma C., Waterloo, N.Y.
Dear Heloise: My wife died a few years back, and I now cook for myself.
I have a question about potatoes: The eyes and black spots - are they
bad for you? And how should I store the potatoes?
- Robert C., Summerfield, Fla.
Robert, first, potatoes should not be stored in a refrigerator. Ideally,
they need a cool, dry place, out of direct sunlight. As for the eyes and
black spots, cut out the black spots. The eyes won’t hurt you. The black
spots could be a bruised spot or a fungus, so cutting it out is a safety
measure. - Heloise
Purchase your pets online?
March 6, 2019
Today’s Sound Off is about buying and selling animals online. -
“Dear Heloise: The
internet has made it possible to buy and sell animals online, but there
are too many scams out there to trust these people. They will:
Show a picture of an adorable kitten or puppy, but often this animal’s
picture is from some other website.
Offer to use a ‘courier service,’ but won’t tell you which service. They
rarely show a phone number on their website.
Want money sent to them by Western Union, MoneyGram or some other
service, and they may tell you to lie about what the money is for when
Have a problem once you pay. They can’t send the pet because the carrier
demands insurance or medical clearance or some other bogus excuse.
“Please tell your readers to NEVER buy a pet online, or at least don’t
pay until you have the animal in your arms.
“For more information, go to:
.” - Michelle and Mike H., Defiance, Ohio
Dear Readers: Here are some other uses for plastic place mats:
Use to line shelves.
Use under a pet’s food dish or water bowl.
Place under the coffee maker on the counter.
Put under potted plants to keep dirt and water off the floor.
Dear Heloise: A while back, you printed a story from a woman who hated
robocalls. First of all, they take advantage of the fact that most
people are courteous. If it’s a number you do not recognize, you can
ignore the call. If you happen to pick up the phone, do not say anything
- just listen. Oftentimes, our voice activates the robocall. When you
say “hello,” the recording on the other end is signaled to start a sales
pitch. - Francis T., Lincroft, N.J.
Francis, robocalls selling all sorts of products and services have
cropped up around the country. One of the worst is the IRS scam, which
has robbed the American public of more than $300 million, according to
the Federal Communications Commission. Many of the people affected were
elderly. - Heloise
Securing her purse
Dear Heloise: Whenever I shop in a store that has shopping carts, I
always hook the child seat belts through my purse straps, just in case
someone is tempted to walk off with it. Love your hints.
- Carol C., Eatontown, N.J.
Carol, be careful. Those straps can be undone very quickly, and it
wouldn’t be difficult for someone to come along and steal your purse
when your back was turned. You’re better off with a crossbody bag that
you don’t take off and leave in a shopping cart. - Heloise
Utensils slide all
Dear Heloise: All my cooking utensils get tangled up in a drawer. How do
I prevent this?
- Carrie-Ann in Ohio
First, put a small hand towel or kitchen towel in the drawer and secure
it with thumbtacks. Next, place all utensils upside down in the drawer.
This should solve the problem. You also can use a rubberized shelf liner
in place of a towel. - Heloise
out of house and home?
Feb. 27, 2019
Today’s Sound Off is about escalating property taxes:
“Dear Heloise: All over
this country property taxes are rising. I understand the need to pay for
schools, fire stations and the police, roads, etc., but many cities are
pricing people out of the housing market. This is especially true for
seniors who live on a limited income and young married couples just
starting out in life. Yes, we can fight the increase in taxes on our
property, but I usually get a notice that my property taxes are going up
a couple of days before there’s a hearing.
“Surely I can’t be the only one who objects to the estimated value of
their home or the taxes the city feels I should be paying. I had hoped
to stay in my home until I died, but taxes may make that impossible.”
- Grace R. in Texas
Readers, got an issue with the way or amount you’re taxed? Let us know.
Dear Readers: Got leftover gift bags from the holidays or a birthday?
Try these ideas:
Reuse the bag to give a gift to someone else.
Carefully open up the side and use as wrapping paper for small gifts.
Use large ones to store blankets, pillows or quilts.
Reuse to carry lunch to work.
Windows a streaky mess
Dear Heloise: Every time I clean my windows, I end up with a streaky
mess! This is my first house, and I want it to look nice. - Imogene
B., Allendale, Mich.
Imogene, try this simple, time-tested recipe for clean and streak-free
In 1/2 gallon of water, add 1 cup of vinegar. Pour this solution into a
spray bottle and spray liberally on the windows. Be sure to dry the
windows thoroughly. Vinegar has so many uses in a home. It’s effective
and economical to use. To get my pamphlet Fantabulous Vinegar Hints and
More, with so many ways to use vinegar and some recipes on cooking with
vinegar, send $5, along with a stamped (70 cents), self-addressed, long
envelope, to: Heloise/Vinegar, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX
78279-5001. Or you can order it online at
www.Heloise.com. This solution can
also be used on mirrors. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: I placed two potatoes in my microwave oven to bake them.
When I opened the oven door after they were done, the skins popped open.
What did I do wrong? - Gale N., Jackson, Tenn.
Gale, before baking, try piercing the potato skins with a fork or making
a slit with a knife to let the steam out. This should help. - Heloise
Lost my car
Dear Heloise: I used to forget where I parked my car when I went
shopping at the mall. Now I always park in the same general area, and
that narrows it down. If I still have trouble finding my car, I use the
beeping sound of the door lock, and when I hear it go off, I follow the
direction of the sound. No more lost car!
- Jacob K. in Boston
Iron is clogged
Dear Heloise: My iron is clogged. How should I unclog it? - Loretta
K., Garner, N.C.
Loretta, pour white vinegar into the iron and let it steam for about
five minutes. Then unplug it and let it cool down before dumping out the
vinegar. Rinse the iron thoroughly by pouring water in and emptying it
wait to be asked
Feb. 20, 2019
Today’s Sound Off is about offering help without being asked. -
“Dear Heloise: Why do
friends and relatives who know they have a sick or elderly friend or
family member wait to be asked before they agree to help? They offer
thoughts and prayers. While that is very much appreciated, they seem to
forget that there are regular chores that a relative needs help with.
The relative may be too proud for his or her own good and might feel
that asking is admitting weakness. Sometimes the person wants someone to
say: ‘I see your yard needs to be mowed. Would you let me do that for
“Just open your eyes, folks, look around and see where there’s a need,
and offer to help.”
- Karol K., Troy, Ohio
Dear Readers: Out of wrapping paper? Here are some substitutions for
Use an old map or a comic section of the newspaper.
Use a bandana for smaller gifts.
Use deflated, shiny helium balloons.
Dear Heloise: I save toilet-paper centers when a roll is finished. They
provide excellent mild abrasion for things, such as scuff marks on
wooden floors (especially ones made by rubber), by rubbing the mark with
a flattened center. The centers, along with a liquid cleaner, are useful
for cleaning ceramic stovetops. Woodworkers can use them on varnished
surfaces, after all the sandpapering is finished, to produce a truly
fine surface. - Jack M., Silver Spring, Md.
Unsubscribe to mags
Dear Heloise: I keep getting magazines I did not subscribe to, with some
even "welcoming” me back! It’s next to impossible to stop this flow of
unwanted magazines in my mailbox. Is there something I can do to make it
stop? - Vicki S., Farmington, Ark.
Vicki, try this hint: Write to a magazine’s subscription department by
email or a letter, and let it know that you do not want the magazine,
you did not subscribe to the publication and you are canceling ALL
further deliveries. Include your name, address and phone number.
Also, you can register at dmachoice.org to stop unsolicited mail. Go to
the website for more information.
Dear Heloise: Here is an idea to start seeds in your kitchen and later
to transplant them in your garden: Take the bottom of an egg carton,
fill each egg slot with dirt and plant a seed in each one. The best
place for them is on a windowsill. Water them, and later transplant the
seedlings in your garden.
- Leigh H., Marion, S.C.
Feb. 13, 2019
Dear Readers: Today's SOUND OFF is about age discrimination. -
I retired last year from a job I held for over 25 years. I'm in
excellent health, and I want to work part time. Before I retired, I was
a district manager and well-respected in my field. My resume was done
professionally and mentions the awards and achievements of my career.
The problem is, no one seems to want to hire people my age.
ÒI'm not alone, because I've
heard the same thing from other retirees who want to put in an honest
day's work but can't get hired. We'll work for the money that's offered;
we'll show up on time and do the job. We have so much experience and
numerous skills, but age discrimination is our biggest problem.
Employers should really take a second look at retirees and give us a
chance to show how loyal, trustworthy and reliable a senior employee can
be when given the opportunity." - Roger H., South Bend, Ind.
Dear Readers: For those who
receive a daily paper, here are some suggestions for the plastic sleeves
that go over the newspaper:
- Use as an umbrella cover for
- Decorative outdoor banners can
be stored in them.
- Slip over golf clubs for
Improve your health
Dear Heloise: Improving your
health is as easy as brushing and flossing your teeth, or so says my
dentist. Is this really true? - Alicia V., Lincoln, N.D.
Alicia, yes, it's true. Research
has found a link between oral care and overall health. Bacteria will in
time build up in the mouth, making the gums susceptible to infection.
Before long, the infection becomes gum disease, which affects the whole
body. Your dentist can tell you more in detail.
Readers, I strongly suggest
making an appointment with your dentist for a cleaning and X-rays to
ensure you stay as healthy as possible. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: My daughter-in-law
was given a medication for my grandson, and the nurse told her to give
him 1 teaspoonful at bedtime. It's even written on the bottle's label.
The following day, I noticed half the bottle was gone! My
daughter-in-law had inadvertently overdosed my grandson, apparently
believing that if a little is good, more is even better. Please tell
your readers that it's crucial to read the prescription label, listen to
the doctor's instructions and follow them to the letter. My grandson
suffered no long-lasting harm, but not all children will be as lucky as
he was. - Y. in Texas
Dear Heloise: How can I get my
husband to remember me on Valentine's Day? He says it's a made-up
celebration so shopkeepers can make money. He doesn't even give me a
card. - Poppy in Washington
Poppy, it's time for a sit-down
with your husband to let him know it hurts your feelings when he ignores
you on Valentine's Day. Your husband will make points with you if he
remembers to buy you a box of candy or flowers, or does some thoughtful
gesture. - Heloise
work and no pay?
Feb. 7, 2019
Dear Readers: Today's Sound Off is about an unethical practice by
In 1995, I went to work as a desk clerk at a motel. All I had to do was
check people in or out and take reservations. Over the next five years,
management kept adding more and more chores, until I was folding
laundry, checking the pool chemicals, picking up the Christmas tree for
the lobby, cleaning up the breakfast area, cleaning rooms the maids
forgot to clean and even taking a co-worker to the emergency room at 2
a.m. All this with no increase in pay! It was blatantly unfair."
- Ann W., Fort Wayne, Ind.
Ann, we get many letters like yours every week. Employers depend on
loyal employees to fill gaps where additional help is needed.
Unfortunately, they sometimes neglect to increase that employee's
paycheck or offer some kind of reward for these additional tasks. That's
how they lose a valued member of their staff.
Dear Readers: Here are some uses
for plastic grocery bags:
- Use to double-bag wet kitchen
- Use outside to collect weeds
and other debris in the yard.
- Slip over your hand and use as
a pooper-scooper when walking your dog.
- Put shoes inside when packing
for a trip.
Dear Heloise: My husband takes
vitamins, and that's good, but I think he overdoes it with all the
vitamin supplements he takes daily. What do you think? - Delores T.,
Delores, too much of certain
vitamins may cause health problems. Your best bet is to consult with
your doctor on what vitamins your husband should be taking. - Heloise
Stay close to your grandkids
Dear Heloise: As a marriage and
family counselor, I see a lot of families that have drifted apart, but
none sadder than a grandparent who wants to be closer to the
grandchildren. Whether they live in the same city or a thousand miles
away, I always recommend calling the grandchildren frequently to stay in
touch. Make your questions specific rather than open-ended, and have
short calls rather than long ones, especially when the child is very
young. Video calls also are a good way to stay in contact. Just be sure
to never call after the child's bedtime or at mealtimes. - Marion B.,
Makeup makeup magic for mature women
Dear Heloise: My sister reads
your column daily, so maybe you can drop a hint for her. Her makeup
makes her look like a clown, and at 53 years of age, that's not a good
look for a professional woman.
- A Reader, Majestic, Ky.
A mature woman needs a light hand
with her makeup: Soft colors and all blush MUST be blended and
natural-looking. This really is a case of "less is more." - Heloise
Jan. 31, 2019
Dear Readers: Today's Sound Off
is a follow-up about resumes. - Heloise
"Dear Heloise: I saw a recent letter in your column about resume
mistakes. I get resumes every day here in Human Resources, and I think
about 90 percent of the ones we get are so poorly written, they're
almost funny. But the seriousness of job hunting is NOT funny. There are
thousands of people looking for work, so here are some suggestions to
avoid common mistakes:
"Misspellings and misuse: Never
misuse a word or misspell words on your resume. Example: 'There' for
'their' or 'to' for 'two.' Spellcheck is your new best friend.
"Lies: I can promise you, you'll
get caught. Employers aren't gullible, and many now do a complete
background and credit check. Didn't graduate from college? Don't say you
"Gaps in employment: Every
employer wonders what you did if there are large gaps in employment. Did
you use that time to acquire new skills or certification/training in
your field? If so, add it to your resume.
"Limit your resume: Keep it short
and to the point. One page is best, but NEVER more than two pages. Avoid
slang and humor.
"DO NOT give out references
(unless you're asked for them), list your hobbies or send a handwritten
resume. If you want the job, a well-written resume is the first step to
let your employer see your potential.
- Wade M. in New York
Dear Readers: Here are some handy
uses for tall potato chip cans:
- Store knitting needles in them.
- Keep fireplace matches in them.
- Store uncooked spaghetti
- Store beads, sequins or other
small craft items in them.
A one-dish meal
Dear Heloise: My husband came up
with this idea: Cook one box of macaroni and cheese. When done, stir in
some lean chunks of ham. It makes a great one-dish meal. - B.P.,
The Land of Lost Socks
Dear Heloise: Whenever I wash my
daughter's baby socks, they seem to get lost! Any hints on how to keep
track of them? - Ava J., Rosedale, Md.
Ava, those little items get lost
so easily! Just take a safety pin and attach them to a larger item, such
as a towel. They wash nicely and come through the dryer without getting
lost. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: Help! My closets
have a musty smell. How can I get rid of it? - Jerrie L., Raton, N.M
Jerrie, make sure your closets are well-ventilated by keeping the doors
open at night or during the day while you're at work. Never put dirty or
damp clothes in your closet, not even in a hamper. You also can try
putting baking soda in a bowl or jar without a lid and placing it in a
corner of your closet. - Heloise
Jan. 23, 2019
Dear Readers: Here's another
Sound Off about the phony calls people get. - Heloise
'Dear Heloise: I read in your
column recently about scammers, and I thought I'd add my 2 cents. It
seems like every other phone call I get is someone trying to get me to
send them money or trying to tell me I won a cruise or a free this or
that. These are all scam calls, and when I question them, they usually
hang up. I got one the other day and told them I do not make
contributions to organizations I don't know and certainly not until I
investigate them. They look for people like me whom they believe are
senile because we're retired, or in our 70s and 80s. Just because a
person is over the age of 65 does not mean he or she is unable to detect
'Please keep all bank account
information secret, and don't share information about credit cards with
people soliciting donations. Instead, ask them to send you information
about their organization.'
- Betty S., Newberry, S.C.
Dear Readers: Here are some uses
for the comics in the Sunday papers:
- Cover an old book.
- Use as wrapping paper.
- Use them to teach your child to
- It makes a terrific border for
a bulletin board.
Reader not in agreement
Dear Heloise: I don't agree with
a recent reader's letter about traveling without children and instead
leaving them with grandparents. It's nice to travel, but take the kids
with you. It's educational for them, and they enjoy time with their
Too many people today rely on
grandparents for money, baby-sitting, help fixing things, etc. My
generation managed on our own, with little or no help. - A Reader in
I can understand wanting to get away for a trip with just the two
parents and no children, and I also can understand the desire to take
the youngsters along. How do you readers feel about this? Should
children be included on every trip? Let us know. - Heloise
Dear Heloise: Regarding a recent
reader's letter, the most tactful way to handle having no children at a
wedding reception is that when your invitations are being printed, they
should say at the bottom: 'You are invited to an adults-only reception
Printers do this all the time.
- A Reader, Jacksonville, Fla.
Dear Heloise: When I put on or
take off pantyhose, I use plastic gloves. No nail snags.
Also, when I pull on or off a garment
over my head, I cover my face with a shower cap. No makeup stains.
- Gail in Los Angeles
Jan. 16, 2019
Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about scammers who use charities to
fool people. - Heloise
“Dear Heloise: Please warn your readers of the charity scams that are
now very popular with thieves. Someone calls, is very friendly on the
phone and wants you to donate to some worthy cause such as a children’s
charity, homeless animals or some medical cause, for example.
“If they want you to donate, have them mail you information on their
charity so you can think it over. Never let anyone pressure you into
giving out personal finance details. Better yet, simply say, ‘I take no
solicitations over the phone’ and hang up. Don’t listen to anything they
have to say after your refusal to discuss the matter.” - Frank H.,
Dear Readers: Here are some uses for old credit cards:
Wash and cut into strips. You can use them to scoop out face creams.
Use the strips as a replacement for collar stays.
Remove a bee’s stinger by scraping the edge of a card across the skin at
the wound site.
Scrape gum off carpet or tile after placing ice on the gum.
Dear Heloise: When my husband and I got married, we decided that we
would travel the world. We lived on his income and saved my earnings. At
the end of the year, we sat down and decided where we’d like to travel.
One year he’d pick a place, and the following year I would pick the
place. The money left over was always invested. We’ve been married over
30 years, have seen the world and have a wonderful nest egg for
recommend that all young couples who are planning to get married should
sit down, decide what they want and work out a plan to ensure their
dreams come true. Build some flexibility into your plans, and never mind
what others are doing. - Hattie in San Antonio
Dear Heloise: We all know how expensive lipstick is today. Well, I
usually scoop out what is left of my lipstick and put it in a small
plastic tub from the dollar store. I microwave the container with the
lipstick. This melts the lipstick, making it easy to blend colors. Use a
lip brush to apply the new color.
- Myrna F., Lady Lake, Fla.
Myrna, it’s an economical and clever way to use all of your lipstick.
Plastic vs. fabric
Dear Heloise: I know a lot of states and cities have banned plastic
bags, and I understand their reasoning, but I can’t say I like it. I
always reused my plastic bags, but now I’ve had to use cloth bags, which
I don’t like. I have to make sure I have enough bags with me when I
shop. I hate it. - Gloria J., Portland, Maine
Well, readers, what do you think about plastic versus cloth bags? -