Switch out screw tops for flip tops

Dear Heloise: Some products such as lotions and toothpaste come with flip tops, while others come with screw tops. Most people prefer the flip tops versus the screw tops. You can replace your flip tops for some of those products that come with screw tops. The flip tops work with most screw-top products. Wash thoroughly before reusing any replacement top, though. — T.D., via email


Dear Heloise: I know this sounds like a sort of obvious suggestion, but I found that it really helps me. When I would use the oven timer for cooking or other stuff, I often wouldn’t hear it when it would go off. I am 80 and hard of hearing anyway.

So, my solution is to take my little wind-up timer with me wherever I am so that I hear and respond right away when time is up. Yeah, yeah, I know all the techies will say you can do that on your phone or watch, but that’s beyond me. So, this is a hint for us octogenarians. Cheers! — Ted Drzewiecki, Lady Lake, Florida


Dear Heloise: We have been instructed that we should not sleep with our cellphones next to our heads. A cellphone needs to be at least 3 feet away from our heads. So, I place my cellphone on the lower shelf of my nightstand that is near the carpeted floor, where the radiation can be absorbed. I can still reach my phone in an emergency, yet I am not getting all the radiation from it. — Dale, Dayton, Ohio


Dear Heloise: My nephew-in-law is from India and is a fantastic cook of Indian cuisine. But because Indian spices are very pungent, he has to rid the house of odors when he’s finished cooking. This is how he does it:

He heats up a few tablespoons of coffee grounds (before they are perked) in a small frying pan until they start smoking. Then he walks through the house with the frying pan of coffee grounds to distribute the smell. The coffee smell will be strong but will dissipate quickly, and the offensive odors will be gone.

This method also gets rid of fish, onion and other cooking smells. It works every time! — Ginny P., Barre, Vermont


Dear Heloise: Raising children is work, and that work includes their education. Public schools are fine for 70% to 80% of a child’s education, and for most of it, children can succeed without their parents’ involvement and help. But the smartest kids in school have parents who help them at home and don’t abandon all the responsibilities to the school teachers. Good parents “homeschool” their kids weekday evenings and weekends. — Roy Saldin, Moreno Valley, California


Dear Heloise: I went online and found cloth garment bags to store winter clothing. I use these instead of the plastic dry cleaner bags or a traveling garment bag. The cloth bag allows the garments to breath, but it doesn’t allow moisture to build up and cause mold or mildew to ruin a nice suit or expensive outfit. It also keeps moths out! — I.V., in North Carolina

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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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