Heloise

Dear Readers: April is Autism Awareness Month. Autism is the term for a group of developmental impairments that can cause people to have difficulty interacting with others. Its symptoms can include avoiding eye contact, having sensitivity to light and sound, and exhibiting repetitive mannerisms and motions, among many others.

Early diagnosis is key; look for these behaviors in your child or grandchild. Visit www.autismspeaks.org for helpful information, resources and support. There’s also a toll-free telephone line, 888-AUTISM2 (888-288-4762), for general questions and hints to help.

— Heloise

It’s a date …

Dear Heloise: A question for your readers: When was the last time you checked the “use-by” dates on items in your refrigerator, freezer and pantry, including spices, baking goods, medicines and even makeup?

When I purchase replacements, I mark their dates on them with a permanent marker and label everything with names and dates.

— Elaine H., Port Charlotte, Florida

On the right track

Dear Heloise: A simple way to clean my sliding glass door track: I pour plain water in the track (a generous amount) and let it sit for 15 minutes. Then I take a roll of paper towels and unfurl a good amount onto the track to absorb the water. An old toothbrush can loosen any grime.

Caveats: My flooring next to the track is vinyl, not carpet, and gloves are a good idea.

Messy? Maybe, but a clean track results, just in time for spring, and no harsh chemicals are used!

 — Mary R. in Florida

Crosstown traffic

Dear Readers: When navigating the bus routes in your city, keep this in mind: The direct route usually means fewer stops and a faster trip. Check out the bus system’s website to map out yours.

— Heloise

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.

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