Dear Heloise: Travel is something I’ve always loved, especially to foreign places, but I used to go with my husband. We’re no longer together, yet I still want to travel. But to be honest, I’m scared to travel alone. None of my friends will go with me to other countries because they’re married or their careers don’t allow for too much time off. — Gigi K., Mapleton, Utah

Gigi, you can go with a group, and any travel agent can help you plan your excursion. If you decide to go by yourself, you might find you enjoy traveling on your own, or you might meet people who enjoy traveling as much as you do. — Heloise


Dear Heloise: If a telemarketer calls you, ask yourself these questions:

• What’s the hurry?

• If it’s “free,” why are they asking me to pay or give them credit card information?

• Why am I “confirming” information ... or am I handing it out?

Resist all travel packages, credit card offers, charitable causes, extended warranties and/or “free” trial offers. The majority of the time these are scams. NEVER give out financial information over the phone. If asked, just hang up the phone. Report your experience to the Federal Trade Commission online ( — Lonnie W., Ypsilanti, Mich.


Dear Heloise: My dentist is adamant about NO rinsing after brushing. If the toothpaste has fluoride, he claims that rinsing will wash it away. — Charlie S., Chambersburg, Pa.

Charlie, this is a matter for debate. Some dentists feel that rinsing out after brushing washes away the fluoride. Yet other people say that swallowing toothpaste upsets their stomach, or that rinsing cleans out bacteria and food particles that were just brushed out from their teeth. Both sides present valid arguments. — Heloise


Dear Heloise: I had a white lampshade that turned yellow with age. I hated to get rid of it because of its unique shape. A friend of mine suggested painting it with spray paint. I gave it a couple of light coats of paint, and it looked new again. Just be sure to take the shade off the lamp before spraying. — Olive R., Fairbanks, Alaska


Dear Heloise: I hate to simply toss out a paper towel if it can be reused. I rinse out the paper sheet I’ve used and, while it’s still wet, I clean the leaves of my plants with it. I have a huge rubber plant, and keeping the leaves clean not only makes it look good, it helps the plant to breathe. — Vicky T., Clarksburg, W.Va.


Dear Heloise: My husband will NOT eat sausage with the casing on it. So, I tried to peel the casing off but made a real mess of it. Then I tried using a vegetable peeler and had much better results! — Louise Y., Irving, Texas


Dear Heloise: If I’m out and about and notice I have a button coming undone, I have a fix: I dab some clear nail polish on the button, and this holds it in place until I can get home and reattach it properly. — Helen D., Monroe, La.

P.S. By the way, I’m the one in my group of friends with the BIG BAG. Anything you need, I probably have it!

Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or fax it to 210-HELOISE, or e-mail it to She can’t answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in her column.

© 2019 by King Features Syndicate Inc.

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