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Slow Cooking

Dear Heloise: Nearly every website I go to wants me to enter my email address or name or more. I might be looking for just some information, but these sites won't allow me to just enter and look around at what they are offering without getting information I'd rather not give them. 

Dear Heloise: As I've gotten older, I've found spring cleaning to be more difficult. At one time I could sail through my little home and have it over within a weekend. Now, however, I do one room a month. I've also gotten less fussy over my home as far as cleaning goes. I'll clean the windows and baseboards, shampoo area rugs if they need it, wash curtains or blinds, and vacuum all upholstered furniture, then polish all the wood furniture. Since I live alone, my home stays clean 99% of the time, and I have time to do the things I really love doing. -- Elaine V., Ocala, Fla.

Dear Heloise: How long does cornstarch last? There is no date on my box of cornstarch. My mother claims it will last for years. but I have my doubts. --Callie Y., Provo, Utah

Dear Heloise: When I go to a drive-thru at a fast food restaurant and order in the speaker, the people talk so fast and muffled that I cannot understand them. I wish they'd please slow down and speak clearly. -- Sandra K., Sugarloaf, Pa.

Dear Heloise: We have discovered a great use for last year's Christmas tree. We placed it outside, as close as possible to the birdfeeder. The birds used it as shelter between feedings. It also served as a prop for suet cake holders, which the birds love. Of course, here in New England we make sure the birdfeeders are down no later than March 31 so as to be gone before the black bears come out of hibernation. Bears love the seeds almost as much as the birds. -- Paul S., Middlebury, CT

Dear Heloise: Did you know that bread heels make great hamburger buns? I save them in a plastic bag in my freezer, then quickly thaw them out when I want to use them. I brown the cut side under a broiler for a toasty flavor. They don't leak or get soggy. -- Annie W., Macon, Georgia

Dear Heloise: All too often I see a death notice in the newspaper with the name of the church or funeral home but no address, not even a ZIP code. I see where to send donations in place of flowers, but there's no address attached. We need the full addresses of these places.

Dear Heloise: My grandson loves to save labels of various wines he liked and keeps them in a scrapbook with notations next to the labels. However, he was having a hard time with removing some of the labels after soaking the bottle for several hours. Is there an easier way to get those labels off? -- Wanda-Jo K., Dyersburg, Tenn.

Dear Readers: With most of us office workers working from home these days, there's a condition I'd like to make you aware of. And that is the danger of sitting all day.

Dear Doctor: I am 67 years old, with arthritis in my hands and feet. My daughter recently had a fall, and X-rays showed signs of arthritis in her foot. She's only 34. What are the most important things she can do to keep it from progressing, or at least slow it down?

Dear Heloise: Turn signals come with cars, so why are so many people reluctant to use them? I was out driving today and saw at least four people turn without a turn signal. One didn't bother to slow down for the turn, another slammed on their brakes just before the turn.

Dear Doctor: I heard two teenagers in line at the drug store talking about the skin microbiome and how you shouldn't use soap on your face because it wipes out the good bacteria. We hear a lot about the gut microbiome lately, but is the skin microbiome really even a thing?

Dear Heloise: With so many children at home, they naturally get bored. I decided to keep mine busy with crafts. I took some elbow macaroni, string, food coloring and some craft paint and got them started on making noodle necklaces. They want to give them out to our female guests at Easter or the Fourth of July, depending on when it's safer to have family gatherings.

Dear Heloise: I love homemade soup and so does my husband. We will sometimes just take a couple cans of tomato juice or vegetable juice from our pantry, toss in some frozen or fresh veggies, and with some thick crusty bread, we made a delicious meal for two. I like to add some beef bouillon too and a few extra spices. My husband likes to add macaroni, but either way it's always a hearty meal. It's quick and easy and very tasty! -- Patricia G., Taos, N.M.

Dear Doctor: I had trouble opening my mouth wide when I was getting my teeth cleaned, and the hygienist said it could be TMJ. But my sister, who is a chiropractor, says she thinks it's a muscle spasm. What is TMJ, anyway?

Dear Heloise: There are so many homeless people in this country, and many of them sleep on the streets and park benches in horrible weather conditions because they will not leave a cherished pet. Why are there so few shelters that will make accommodations for pets?

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