2013-06-18 / Columns

Hints From Heloise


Dear Readers: Pets are important members of our families. So when one gets lost, it can be a traumatic experience for everyone, including the pet! Here are hints to help reunite you and your pet as quickly as possible:

*Call animal shelters, veterinary clinics (in your area) and animal-control centers. Give them a description so they can be on the lookout. Better yet, see if you can email or fax a photo! Visit animalcontrol centers often, even daily.

*Create a lost-pet sign and post everywhere! Your neighborhood, veterinary clinics, animal shelters, pet-supply stores, gas stations, restaurants – anywhere that will allow you to post a sign. Check local regulations on posting signs on city telephone poles and lampposts.

*Check your newspaper. Most will run lost-pet ads at no charge.

*Talk to your neighbors! Let them know your pet is missing. The more eyes that are watching, the sooner your pet can be found.

*Use the Internet. There are many lost-pet websites.

*Most important: Don’t give up! It may be weeks or months, but you still could be reunited.

– Heloise


Dear Heloise: I love the different flavored waters, but they can be expensive. My hint is to make them yourself. I use bottled water and add sliced fruit (strawberries, raspberries, grapes, pineapple, lemon and lime), cucumbers, etc. You even can add mint leaves. Place the pitcher or container in the refrigerator for at least six hours to let the “additive” infuse into the water. – Linda B. in California


Dear Readers: When is the best time to buy new tires? When they are on sale? When your current tires have 10,000 miles on them? When they are 6 years old? Well, the simple answer is: When the tread is extremely worn. However, other factors to consider are the age, cracks, bulges or any other physical defects.

The easiest way to determine if you need new tires is by checking the tread depth. Tires are now made with “wear bars” that run across the tire tread. If you can see them, your tread is at 2/32-inch depth, which most states require as the minimum.

If you can’t see the wear bars, then try this simple and classic hint: Take a penny and insert it with Lincoln’s head down into the tread. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the tread is too low, and you need new tires. Also consider the age of the tires. If they are 5 years old or older, you probably need new ones. – Heloise


Dear Heloise: I pack a small, plastic, empty spray bottle in my suitcase when I travel. When I get to my hotel, I fill it with water. If any of my clothes have wrinkles, I spray them lightly and then use the hair dryer on them to remove the wrinkles. – Kenny in Oklahoma

Good travel (and at home) “green” hint. It certainly saves water, since you don’t have to run the shower in the bathroom to create steam to “unwrinkle” clothes! – Heloise


Dear Heloise: I bought a bag of miniature marshmallows, which I stored in the pantry. I opened them three weeks later to use, and they were all stuck together in one big blob. It was a sticky mess getting them separated to use in my dessert recipe. How can I avoid this problem? – Ruth F. in Ohio

Just place them in a container with a tightfitting lid, or in a freezer safe plastic bag, and store in the freezer. Remove from the freezer and let the marshmallows warm to room temperature before using.

If the marshmallows are stuck, pour a little confectioners’ (powdered) sugar or cornstarch in the bag and shake to coat. The marshmallows should just break apart. – Heloise


Dear Heloise: Since it is summer and we will be using our deck more, could you please reprint your hint on how to clean a deck? – Nicole in Tennessee

I would be happy to reprint it! Mix 1 cup liquid laundry detergent (the regular kind) and 1 gallon hot water. Apply to the deck with a softbristled brush or push broom, and allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary. Some stains may need a little extra scrubbing.

If your deck is made of composite material, check with the manufacturer, just to be safe, for specific cleaning instructions. – Heloise


Dear Heloise: I love to bake. One of the easiest hints I have is to use a fork to make designs on cookies, cakes and lemon bars. Just by scraping the tines of the fork across the frosting

Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279- 5000, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com. I can’t answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.

(c) 2013 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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