Dear Heloise: In your column in the Parkersburg News and Sentinel, you wrote about preserving old family pictures. Pictures will often get misplaced or lost. I take all my pictures and scan them onto my computer. That way I can preserve them from fading or getting lost.
I am able to save them into different files on my computer. I name the file with what the pictures are of. Entire pages of albums also can be scanned and saved -- no longer in danger of destruction once done. Names and descriptions of them also can be put on the files. Always include the names of the people in the pictures, since you know them, because later they will be just pictures of unknown people.
These can now be put on flash drives and given to family members, transferred to other computers or even copied to a CD. It's a great way to preserve family pictures and then be able to easily find them and know who they are. I enjoy reading your column. -- Gene Stephenson, Lesage, W.V.
Gene, with all the digital technology we have, this is an excellent suggestion to keep all your treasured photos. -- Heloise
Gasoline On Clothing
Dear Readers: Several of you have written to me about accidentally spilling gas on your slacks while fueling up. Take these steps to remove that awful odor.
Hang the gas-stained garment outside first, so the fuel will evaporate as much as possible. This could take a day or two. Then wash the pants in the hottest water that the manufacturer recommends and add a bit more detergent than normal and 1/4 cup of plain ammonia (nonsudsing) to the wash water. After washing, let air-dry, if possible. Repeat this process if smells still remain.
The key thing to remember when handling fuel spills on clothing is NOT to place them in the dryer after washing them. Fumes from the fuel could possibly cause a fire if there is a significant amount left in the material. You also can take the pants to a dry cleaner. -- Heloise
Bring Your Own Bag
Dear Heloise: Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all made an effort to bring our own bags when we go shopping? Think of the millions of plastic bags we would prevent from sitting in landfills! Encouraging recycling is probably one of the best things we can do for future generations! -- Nancy, Bozeman in Montana
Nancy, yes, recycling is a very good thing. All of us have reusable bags or totes from big-box stores. Save all these bags. In fact, one company has this printed on its fabric bag: "This bag is made to be reused. Use it and reuse it." And it gives instructions for washing and drying it on the bottom of the bag. -- Heloise
Dear Heloise: Our neighborhood recently experienced an electrical power outage. Normally, people look for flashlights and candles. I noticed when looking outside in our back-yard that the solar LED pathway lights were on. I had an a-ha! moment and brought the solar lights in the house and placed them in several rooms. We had light for eight full hours, until daylight and the power was restored. -- John Dallmann, San Antonio, Texas
John, if you live in an area prone to power outages, having some these on hand could be very useful. -- Heloise
Dear Heloise: The handiest thing I ever did was put my Medicare card, Blue Cross card, Rx card and business cards from every doctor (PCP, dermatologist, cardiologist, ENT and several others) all in a zip-top bag with my driver's license, list of prescriptions and vaccine record. I no longer have to dig for these items, and that frees up valuable space in my wallet. I have a second one for my husband. And, boy, did that come in handy at the emergency room! These "wallets" are always in my handbag. -- Garvin and Jenny, via email
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to [email protected] I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.
King Features Syndicate