Hints from Heloise

Scented cat litter will always clear away troublesome box odor

Heloise, syndicated columnist

Dear Heloise: I ordered books from a secondary seller on Amazon. They arrived smelling very moldy, but without any visible mold. I had about 1/3 of a bucket of scented clumping cat litter.

I laid a paper towel in the bucket on top of the litter, stood the books fanned out inside the bucket, closed the lid and left them for two days. All the books came out smelling great, and the cat litter was still usable. — Jan Wiley, Bakersfield, California


Dear Heloise: If you’re packing up china or other tableware, puppy training pads are an excellent choice for protecting the fragile cargo. They fold and layer easily between plates, so a single pad can protect three to four plates. You can also cut the pads in half for smaller saucers and plates. Just find the cheapest options online or at your local big-box store. — Mark Kuhnke, in Florida


Dear Readers: Instead of letting laundry pile up for one big “laundry day,” try doing one or more loads of clothing a few days during the week. This way, you won’t completely run out of clothing or have to devote an entire day to running the washer and dryer. — Heloise


Dear Readers: Planning to get your grill out for the summer, but it clearly needs cleaning? Pour or spritz white vinegar over a wad of scrunched-up aluminum foil and scrub the grill with it to get rid of leftover crud and gunk. Then, as a final step, soak the grill in hot, soapy water to finish off the cleaning. — Heloise


Dear Heloise: To Hannah M. who has a mice problem — if she’s not allergic, I suggest that she get a cat, which is nature’s solution to the problem. — Rory S., via email


Dear Readers: If you have recently decided to upgrade your iPhone or purchase a new one for yourself or a loved one, it’s important to know how to take care of it — which includes how to safely clean your new phone.

According to Apple, here’s what to do. First, unplug the phone if it’s charging and turn it off. Use a soft, lightly dampened, lint-free cloth to clean the surface. (Never use any cleaning products that contain bleach or hydrogen peroxide.)

You can use a disinfectant wipe to gently clean the exterior of the phone. Avoid getting moisture in any of the openings. Never submerge your iPhone in any cleaning agents. — Heloise

EDITOR’S NOTE: 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 Heloise@Heloise.com. I can’t answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.


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