Dear Heloise: About twice a year, I collect the address pages off my current mail-order catalogs, sit down and call each one to request removal from the company's mailing list. It takes less than a minute (average) for each one, and I think it is a win-win situation. My mailbox is not clogged with the catalogs (which I recycle), and the companies don't lose money on someone who will not order from them -- not to mention my grateful letter carrier. In years of doing this, I have never had an unpleasant experience, and most thank me and ask if they can do anything else for me. Iris Baker, Bryan, Texas
Hey, a few minutes to make life a little less stressful is worth it. Please note that many companies might send you one only during the holiday season. Heloise
P.S. My compliments to many of the customer-service reps -- they usually do a good job.
Dear Readers: When making a sandwich, if you find you don't have enough lettuce, here are some alternatives.
UShred lettuce to make it go farther.
UAdd thinly sliced cucumbers or green peppers.
UUse fresh spinach.
UCut off and use the leafy tops of celery stalks.
Dear Heloise: When the new phone book comes in, I put the old phone book in my car to use with my cell phone or to look up addresses. Norma Lyman, Coldwater, Mich.
Don't forget the business pages in case it's a separate book. Heloise
Dear Heloise: This is not a household hint, but I think it is a wonderful idea. A co-worker of mine mentioned a friend of his who recently passed away. He cut out his friend's obituary column from the paper, laminated it and used it as a bookmark for his Bible. It was the perfect size for a bookmark and a great way to remember a loved one.
I can't believe that after 53 years on this Earth, and reading Heloise for at least my adult life, I had never seen this idea nor thought of it myself. John Dunagan, via e-mail
Dear Heloise: I'm diabetic, and sugar-free lemonade is not served at most places I eat. I take a little container of sugar-free, flavored instant drink mix and put it in a plastic self-sealing bag. At the restaurant, I get a glass of water and pour some in to taste. Ray Ellen Odle, North Little Rock, Ark.
I would like to know why manufacturers of makeup pencils believe in shrink-wrap that is so tight and almost impossible to remove! Also, the molded, sturdy plastic packaging that some curling irons, electronics, etc., come in is quite a feat to open. After cutting the hard plastic, you still have to pry it open while trying not to cut yourself on the sharp, just-cut edges. Are manufacturers testing our ability to open the almost impossible? -Heloise
XSend a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, or you can fax it to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com.
King Features Syndicate