Move the right way

Dear Heloise: Summertime is often moving season. My husband’s company is relocating us across the country. These are my favorite hints when hiring a moving company:

There are dozens of moving companies out there, but I picked three to interview. That’s enough to get an idea of what companies are offering, rates, how the industry works, etc.

So that I would be on the same wavelength as my movers, I had to understand if they were going to help me unpack, what heavy objects they would lift and if they would disassemble and assemble items.

Once I had chosen the moving company, I had them come out and look at everything that needed to be moved. They have a tool on their website for this, but nothing beats an experienced mover’s assessment.

Questions are key, especially about insurance: Is my property covered if it is damaged? Are your workers bonded? (“Bonded” means my things will be covered in the highly unlikely event of vandalism or theft.)

Moving is one of the most stressful events in a family’s life, but asking the right questions and hiring the right team will help tremendously. — Helen L. in New York



Dear Readers: Cheap hair shampoo has MANY uses around the house. Here are a few:

* Makes a good bubble bath in a pinch.

* Washes lingerie when traveling.

* Makes an adhesive strip loosen for easier removal.

* Works as a laundry pre-treater, especially for ring around the collar.

I’ve compiled my favorite clothing-stain cleaning hints into a handy pamphlet. Would you like to receive one? Visit to order, or send $5, along with a stamped, self-addressed, business-size envelope, to: Heloise/Stain, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Make sure all cleaners in your home are clearly labeled. — Heloise


Dear Heloise: I have a magnetic paper pad on my fridge along with a pen. When I make my shopping list, I write it down, but I start at the bottom of the paper and write going up.

This way, I just tear off the part of the list that I need, and conserve the rest of that long page for the next items. Why waste paper? — Rusti S. in Houston


Dear Heloise: My parents were frugal and big savers. One hint they shared with me: Plan ahead. I’m shopping now and looking around for sales and discounts on gifts for the holiday season. — Helen B. in Montana


Dear Heloise: I wish people would realize that there are some who have allergies; one of mine is to perfume. I was at a restaurant, and pretty soon my throat was burning! A tiny bit of perfume is not offensive. — Martha S., Beardstown, Ill.


Dear Heloise: My family taught me this at the dinner table: When someone says, “Please pass the salt,” pass both the salt and the pepper. They are not to be divorced!

I thought this was cute, and courteous! — Ellie S. in Arizona


Hints from Heloise run occasionally in Lifestyles. Readers may send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE, or email: Letters won’t be answered personally.