Dear Heloise: We have photographed every item that we own by room and in the attic. This includes the hot-water heater and the heating and cooling units. We have filed these, along with paid receipts, in a folder.
If we replace an item, we remove its picture and receipt and replace it with a picture of the new item and paperwork. The removed items go into a dead file for future reference, if needed. We place the folder in our bank safety-deposit box. In the event of a loss, all we have to do is furnish the insurance adjuster with a current picture or pictures and the associated paperwork.
All important paperwork should be filed in a secure place other than in the house it pertains to. Ted and Sallie, Little Rock, Ark.
Dear Heloise: I never miss reading your column and have a suggestion for travelers. In this day of security checks at all airports and traveling locations (which I agree with), I use small mesh laundry bags for packing bras, panties, hosiery and other personal items. It makes it very easy for security checkers to see what items are in my luggage without having to remove them piece by piece, and they're easier to replace in the luggage.
I also use clear-plastic bags for cosmetics, toothpaste and brushes, and I double-bag items that might leak in transit. I have even been complimented by some security people after they checked my luggage for saving them time. B.K.H., California
Dear Heloise: This hint has helped us in many different situations. I keep two plush bath towels in each of our vehicles. I buy them to blend with the interior color of the cars. We've used them to mop spills, to double as a pillow or blanket, prop up a book, block the sun from a baby and protect things when transporting them to and from the car in the rain.
They have been used as tablecloths for the laps of my kids to keep food off the car. I've used them to keep warm at a soccer game when the wind picked up unexpectedly. When delivering meals or food trays, they help keep dishes from sliding around the trunk. They are also good for padding sharp or delicate things. Kelly Harris, via e-mail
Dear Heloise: I have extra key rings, so I use them to put on all my key-ring store club cards. I keep that separately in my purse so I don't have them all dangling with my keys. At a register, when I need to use a club card, instead of handing over all the keys, it's nice to have a separate key ring. Mary from Pennsylvania
XSend a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
King Features Syndicate