Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - Send a money- or time-sav­ing hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San An­to­nio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or email

DEAR HELOISE: My hus­band and I were so ex­cited about our trip to New Zealand that we posted on so­cial me­dia when we’d leave and re­turn, and promised to post pic­tures of our trip.

While we were gone, we were robbed. Bur­glars broke into the house and took our com­put­ers, jew­elry, golf clubs, ap­pli­ances and more. They man­aged to dis­en­gage the alarm sys­tem to get in­side. They broke mir­rors, sprayed ob­scen­i­ties on our walls and slashed open all the sofa pil­lows. The dam­age and theft ran into thou­sands of dol­lars. A word to the wise from the po­lice: Never, never post travel in­for­ma­tion on any so­cial me­dia un­til af­ter you re­turn, and maybe not even then.

— Henry and Eve­lyn B.

in In­di­ana

DEAR HELOISE: We have a dig­i­tal as­sis­tant, which is a voice-di­rected de­vice. Once you ac­ti­vate this de­vice with your wake-up word, re­mem­ber that it’s al­ways lis­ten­ing. (It has to in or­der to func­tion.) When you talk, it sends data into the cloud, where it could pos­si­bly be hacked. Yes, there are pri­vacy set­tings, in­clud­ing turn­ing off the mi­cro­phone, which de­feats the pur­pose of hav­ing one.

— Ja­son D., Ohio

DEAR HELOISE: What is the dif­fer­ence be­tween hos­pice and pal­lia­tive care? — Nanette B., Ham­mond, La.

DEAR READER: Hos­pice care is gen­er­ally pro­vided for pa­tients at the end of their lives, or when doc­tors be­lieve a pa­tient has six months or less to live and if the ill­ness has run its nat­u­ral course.

Pal­lia­tive care in­volves a team of med­i­cal per­son­nel who will work with the pa­tient’s doc­tor to help come up with a plan to pro­vide relief from the symp­toms of an ill­ness, re­gard­less of the di­ag­no­sis. Pal­lia­tive care can start with the first di­ag­no­sis or late in the di­ag­no­sis.

DEAR HELOISE: I’ve made three ma­jor dis­cov­er­ies in my life over the span of a 22-year mar­riage:

Life will never go ac­cord­ing to plan. No mat­ter how care­fully you set down your goals and plans, things will come up out of the blue that you never ex­pected. Learn to roll with it.

A part­ner/spouse should act like a part­ner. This may not al­ways be 50/50, but no mat­ter what, you should not do it all.

You’re not un­usual — no one has it all fig­ured out, and no one has a per­fect life.

— Mia G., Idaho

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