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Homemade pomanders for holiday scents

Dear Readers: One of my favorite things about the holiday season is the wonderful fun of rich fragrances that fill my home. I make my own POMANDER BALLS for ornaments for the tree, or to hang in a closet or a guest bathroom.

Here’s how to make them:

Stick rows of whole cloves in an orange or apple. After each piece of fruit is completely covered with cloves, allow it to dry in a cool place for as long as possible.

After the fruit has dried completely, make a mixture of 1 part orris root (available in drugstores) and 1 part mixed spices, such as cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg.

Coat the fruit with the spices and leave for two weeks. Shake off excess spice, and tie each fruit with ribbon, making a loop at the top for a hanger. The fragrance is phenomenal! I hope they will enrich your home as well. — Heloise

SMART SAFETY IDEA

Dear Heloise: The GPS for my car asked for my home address. Instead, I put the address of a doughnut shop down the street into my GPS system. This way, I’m protected if a thief steals my car and garage opener, because he won’t be able to access my home or know where I live. — Lisa T., Lubbock, Texas

LOSE FOR A CRUISE?

Dear Heloise: A while ago, Maggie J. in Orlando offered tips on what to pack for a cruise. She mentioned taking an extension cord and a power strip. Please let your readers know that some cruise lines do not allow these two items. This is for everyone’s safety. Contact the cruise line to find out what’s allowed and what is not. — Carol S., Dayton, Ohio

WATERY POTATO SALAD

Dear Heloise: Help! Every time I make potato salad, the next day it is watery. — Barbara F., via email

Barbara, cut up your potatoes before cooking them, and let them completely cool off afterward before adding dressing. Hot potatoes give off steam and contribute to the watery problems. You also might consider using russet potatoes, as they tend to be drier. Don’t use a “light” mayonnaise, because it usually is thinner. — Heloise

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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: Heloise@Heloise.com. Letters won’t be answered personally.

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