New calendar serves as planner when holidays roll around

Dear Heloise: After the holidays, when I put up my new calendar for the following year, I note on the back of the month of December what I served at Christmas parties. Too much food or not enough? Also, whether I need more Christmas wrap or boxes, and anything else I need to remember when December rolls around again. The back side of my December page is filled with notes.
It's amazing what we can forget from one year to the next, and this helps me tremendously. Ginny Winn, Huntington Beach, Calif.
Dear Heloise: For you, on your visit to The Manhattan Mercury in Manhattan, Kan., from Helen Roser, ardent reader of two generations of Heloise:
Twinkle, twinkle, kitchen sink!
Like all my kitchen, you're in the pink.
Windows sparkle where streaks once were,
Thanks to humble vinegar.
With Domestic Goddess savvy, I reign with ease.
All thanks to hints from dear Heloise!
P.S.: Even my pets, whether cloaked in feathers or fur,
Live healthier, happier lives, because of her.
Helen, thank you for the darling poem! It was such a delight to meet you and everyone else when I visited Manhattan and the newspaper. Didn't we have fun when I took people for a ride in the sidecar of my motorcycle? Folks, visit for photos and story. Heloise
Dear Heloise: When I take my 8-year-old to an amusement park, county fair or any crowded place where we might get separated, I take a photo of her with my digital camera, just inside the entrance -- one full shot showing what she is wearing, and one close-up.
It has never happened, but if she got lost, I would have an ID to give searchers. Later, the photos go into her memory book. Shirley in Central Florida
Here are two helpful hints from one great reader, Barb in New Brunswick, Canada:
It's important to keep the mesh screen on a hair dryer free of dust and lint to prevent overheating and possibly causing your dryer to quit. An old toothbrush makes it very easy to clean the lint out.
I continually roll out my biscuit dough right on the counter. If I use my dishcloth to clean up the residue, I end up with gooey globs of dough on my cloth. Now I simply take some flour, sprinkle it over the bits of dough, rub with my palm, and I'm left with little bits that I can brush into my hand and dispose of.
Dear Heloise: After shopping all over to no avail for a new gasket for my old blender, I cut the lip off a regular-size Mason jar rubber ring, and it worked perfectly! Louise Tucker, Battle Ground, Wash.
Dear Heloise: While caring for someone who had to use a bedside commode, I found that lining the bucket with a plastic trash bag was the most helpful thing. Joan P., De Witt, Ark.
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or you can fax it to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to
King Features Syndicate

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