Sending a little bit of home to our troops overseas

Dear Heloise: I read your column in The (Springfield, Ill.) State Journal-Register, and the mention of cakes baked in coffee cans is an excellent hint. I’ve been sending parcels weekly to military personnel for seven years, and now I’ve affiliated with as a means to provide support to those who need a little extra help. The treats most commented on lately have been the powdered-sugar doughnuts (individually packaged, easy to carry and a taste of home). Other items that are appreciated are music CDs and DVDs of TV shows and movies, popcorn, jerky, gum, coffee, tea and cocoa. The U.S. Postal Service has special flat-rate boxes at reduced rates for mailing to APO or FPO addresses.

All the snacks are distributed and encourage men and women to stop by to chat in a nonthreatening environment about the issues affecting them. Vaughn W. Henry, Springfield, Ill.

How wonderful to be able to send a little bit of home to our troops. I had to edit your letter for space, but the “goodie” points are all here. Heloise

Dear Heloise: I had a co-worker tell me that water was running or leaking in her toilet bowl. So, she called a plumber, who charged her $75 to replace the flapper ($70 for the call and $5 for the part!). Everyone should check the toilet flapper once or twice a year. Judy in Kentucky

Dear Heloise: I am writing in regard to a reader who nearly had a mishap while doing laundry. I have been lucky not to fall, but those laundry dryer sheets are very dangerous. They do tend to fall on the floor when you are unloading the dryer, and they can be missed. Nancy Levine, via e-mail

Nancy, dryer sheets contain fabric conditioners that are oily, and yes, they can be slippery. You can use the dryer sheet to wipe down the washer and occasionally clean the lint trap. Heloise

Dear Heloise: After reading about flannel-backed tablecloths, I wanted to share this. We invited friends and their teenage daughters to go camping in our pop-up camper and the girls in a tent. A cold front unexpectantly blew in, and after giving the sleeping bags and blankets to our guests, my husband and I struggled to keep warm with just a sheet. In the middle of the night, after racking my brain for some way to get warm, I got up and went outside, took the tablecloth off of the picnic table and placed it over us, with the flannel side toward our bodies. We slept warm as toast the rest of the night! Shari Levert, Lakehills, Texas

Dear Heloise: I buy cat litter in the bucket-type containers. After they are empty, I use them for dry cat food, dog food, birdseed and leftover fertilizer for my lawn. The lids come in different colors, and I label them with the contents so I can tell at a glance what’s inside. Lena, via fax

SBlt Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or you can fax it to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to

King Features Syndicate

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