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Hints From Heloise: Print up postcard address labels ahead

DEAR HELOISE: When getting ready to go on a trip during which I plan to mail postcards, I make computer-generated address labels for them at home. It saves me time on the trip. I think there is greater likelihood the cards will reach their destinations, and in less time than if the addresses were handwritten.

Sandra M., via email

DEAR SANDRA: You are correct about the address being printed (not scribbled in illegible writing) helping the postcard or letter reach the right place quicker. If a postal machine (like a scanner) can’t read the address or even the ZIP code, the item gets diverted to another sorter. If no luck then, it goes on to another place to be read. Heloise

DEAR HELOISE: I live in South Texas, and once in a while when we might get a freeze, the newspeople remind us to let the outside faucets drip a little so they won’t freeze.

I used to live in Minnesota, where it really froze and lasted a long time. Here in Laredo, this very rarely happens. So, to protect the outside faucets, I use foam koozies we save to “wrap” pipes. Just slit them in half lengthways, put around the pipe and secure with duct tape.

My husband kids me that if it might freeze, I wrap it! But why take a chance? We have one lone pipe that sort of peeks through the soil, so I put several old blankets and a few yard rocks on top. I’ve never had a problem!

Rose G., Laredo, Texas

DEAR ROSE: There is always a way! Living in San Antonio, it does not freeze often, and if it does, maybe for only a few hours. However, we do wrap some outside plants using old blankets and the like.

DEAR HELOISE: My son came home with a class picture. I grabbed a pen and wrote the names of his classmates on the back. In a few years, we won’t remember everyone’s names. This way, we can flip over the picture.

Tanya, via email

DEAR TANYA: Good hint. However, you might want to use a pencil next time rather than a pen. A pen can “bleed” through. Or make a copy of the photo and write on the front of the copy, then attach to the original.

DEAR HELOISE: Have you ever had difficulty removing a bunch of grapes from the stem? Instead of just pulling on the grapes, I twist them as I pull. They come off much easier this way.

Louise in Alabama

Send a great hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 79500, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com.