DEAR HELOISE: I read your column where you answered a letter on how to pack for an out-of-state move. There's one thing I need to add to your advice about marking the boxes with their contents. I have had an unpleasant experience from doing that very thing: stolen boxes due to that mistake.
One box was labeled as "Breakable, handle with care, antique perfume bottles." This box was stolen and held my collection of 30-plus years. So, I came up with this checklist. As you pack a box, write the items in a binder, one to two pages per box, and number that page, along with the corresponding number on the box. Also, take a picture of the box halfway through packing, and again when finished.
This system will help as well if and when you need to give information to insurance companies.
-- Cathy R. in California
DEAR READER: Good advice! You want to label the boxes, but not be so descriptive that thieves know the exact contents -- especially which box contains the expensive stuff!
DEAR HELOISE: Please, I would like for all parents of young children who are in diapers to make sure that plastic zippered baggies are an essential part of their diaper bag. I work in a small business, and sometimes when I open the door at work, a smell hits me that somewhere in the dozen trash cans there is a dirty diaper. When I finally find it, it's out to the trash bin with the garbage bag. Please, when you change the little one out in public, put the soiled diaper in a baggie and seal it before putting it in the trash.
-- A Reader, Overton, Texas
DEAR HELOISE: Using a credit card or knife to remove wax can scratch pewter or silver candlesticks. A method we use at church is a hair dryer and paper towels. Place the item on several folded paper towels and, with the dryer on "medium," aim it at the wax, and use more paper towels to absorb the wax as it melts. The "high" setting may cause the wax to splatter as it melts. Use caution with this method, as it will cause the items to get very hot, which is why we don't hold the item as we clean.
-- Sharyn M., via email
DEAR HELOISE: I keep a screwdriver in my kitchen. I use it for many things, but the main one is to help me open the flip-top lids that come on cans of soup, vegetables, etc. Some of them are so hard, and the screwdriver gives me the extra leverage I need.
-- A Reader in Alaska
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
Weekend on 05/08/2014
Print Headline: Helpful Hints