Dear Readers: Recently, when I was at the National Federation of Press Women's conference, I was handed a letter from Elizabeth Laden of Island Park, Idaho, that I'd like to share with you.
"Dear Heloise: Sometime in our early teen years, my brother Joe, now 56, and I, now 55, broke a lamp in my mother's formal parlor. It was a sacred room into which we were not allowed to tread -- unlike the more casual living rooms of today.
"The lamp was made of fine porcelain, and we knew that we were in big trouble for breaking it, and for having clowned around in that special room. Heloise was our only hope, and I remembered that my mother read her column religiously for helpful hints about managing the home.
"I went to the kitchen, found my mother's stash of Heloise clippings and searched them until I found information on repairing broken ceramics and porcelain. We were able to find the recommended glue in a repair drawer and followed Heloise's suggestions for careful gluing and filing the glued sections after the glue had dried.
"My mother never knew that we had broken that lamp. The repair saved us from being grounded and taught us how to be resourceful. But Heloise really saved us.
"Years later, we confessed to our mother, and she was surprised. She graciously accepted our apology but also apologized to us for having been such a strict parent.
"Heloise has grown with the times, adjusting her helpful information to accommodate modern families. But one thing has not changed about the column -- the caring, attentive concern for helping people live better lives."
Elizabeth, I'm glad my mom, the original Heloise, could help, and thank you for the kind words. Many old hints are still good today. Heloise
Dear Heloise: Fifteen years ago, my husband and I were blessed with twins on our birthday -- yes, all four of us have the same birthday. I stayed home with the twins, and it was impossible to get out to shop by myself.
My sweet father, as a gift, had the milkman deliver us a gallon of milk every Monday. He has never quit, even now. What a blessing and a special gift to give to a family with a new baby. Also, for struggling newlyweds, having a pizza delivered once a month would be a great gift idea as well. Kelly Epperson, Hannibal, Mo.
Dear Heloise: I sometimes have to put on a bracelet by myself. Instead of using a piece of tape to keep one end in place while I connect the clasp, I drape it across my wrist and then hold my wrist up against a wall or door to keep it from slipping while I hook it. Try it. I think you'll like it. Carol Glasscock, via e-mail
King Features Syndicate