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By Heloise

This article was published April 21, 2014 at 2:56 a.m.

DEAR READERS: Here is this week’s Sound Off:

“Why don’t drug manufacturers put their products into containers that fit? The bottles for many medications are huge, only half-full and hard to handle for people with arthritis. It seems that the price of medications would be lower if the containers were smaller.” - F.A., Lebanon, Pa.

DEAR READER: Most likely it’s because they buy the bottles in bulk, and in this case one size fits all.

DEAR READERS: Other uses for cloth wine carriers (the six-pack kind):

Store hair dryers, curling irons, etc., in them.

Keep yarn or other craft supplies separated.

Store ornaments in them for protection.

Put glasses in one when moving.

Use when grocery shopping for other bottled items.

DEAR HELOISE: I’m a real estate agent, and I have a client who has brownish stains in a fiberglass tub. Any suggestions?

  • Cathie B., Twin Falls, Idaho

DEAR READER: To clean a fiberglass tub, just use baking soda and water. Coat the tub with the mixture, let sit for an hour or so and then rinse. If you have stubborn stains, you can make a baking soda paste and scrub the stains with a brush or sponge.Make sure not to use anything rough or abrasive, because it can scratch the tub. But please note that if the stains are brownish, it’s most likely from the water, either from a well or from rust in the plumbing.

DEAR HELOISE: My father is a loyal reader and asked me to pass this on. One evening, he found a small finch flying around his bedroom and called me for counsel. We decided that his best bet to free the bird was to darken all the indoor lights, turn on the patio light and open the sliding glass door. He shined a flashlight on the ceiling. After a time, the bird became attracted to the light. The bird flitted and followed it, until he edged his way to the open doorway, then dipped and flew away.

  • Tina F., via email

DEAR HELOISE: I sew and always have bobbins from one project to another, but what a mess it makes in the drawer in my sewing machine! I took a short plastic bag, put all of the used bobbins in it, closed it and put it in the drawer.

  • A.B., via email

Send a money- or time-saving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or email

ActiveStyle, Pages 26 on 04/21/2014

Print Headline: HELPFUL HINTS


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