DEAR HELOISE: I got tired of having to clean the bathroom mirror every time I flossed and brushed my teeth. I realized that if I leaned down over the sink to do the job and didn’t watch myself in the mirror, the mirror stayed clean. An obvious solution, but one I didn’t think of for years!
— Nancy B., North Little Rock
DEAR READERS: Buying furniture is an investment. Cheap furniture is not a good purchase. Decide on a budget and how much you can spend on furniture, and ask family and friends for advice. Here are some hints to help:
On wood furniture, look for solid wood. Avoid pieces labeled “particleboard,” “pressboard” and “fiberboard.”
Dovetail joints are high-quality. Furniture put together with staples and glue is, of course, lower quality.
Drawers should close smoothly.
Cushions need to consist of a firm interior, wrapped in padding. Bare foam means the maker didn’t take the time to do quality work.
Upholstery patterns should match, and the pleating around the bottom should be weighted.
Look around your home to see what pieces can be moved and repurposed. Rearranging furniture you have can give your room a new look, and can save you money, too.
DEAR HELOISE: I have twin toddler grandchildren, and they make a mess. Can you give me some hints to keep their clothes clean? — Grandma Flo
in Louisiana DEAR READER: How wonderful to have two little grandkids. But I agree — it’s double the work. Follow the three rules of stain removal:
Attack the stain ASAP. Setin stains are harder to remove.
Give it time. Spray pre-treater and let the cleaner do the work.
Some stains are stubborn. You may need to repeat a treatment. Don’t put clothes in the dryer until you are satisfied that the stain is gone.
Don’t over-stuff the washer. Items need to move freely to get cleaner.
DEAR HELOISE: When my son was born, we took a picture of him lying on the same blanket every month on the same day. We took the picture of him in his diaper alone.
It was amazing to see his development over his first year of life.
— Bev Collin, Ohio