Do your part to reduce the use of plastic bags |

Dear Heloise: Plastic pollution is a huge problem for wildlife, not only because animals can get entangled or ingest it, but also because it breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces. These micro-plastics are found everywhere, from the depths of our oceans to our atmosphere. And they cause physiological problems in animals. Please encourage your readers to do their part to try to reduce their use of single-use plastics, including plastic grocery bags. Using reusable shopping bags helps avoid plastic waste. Thanks very much! — Julie M. in Colorado

Julie, thank you for sending this information so that we can help do our part. — Heloise

Cereals for the birds?

Dear Heloise: The clue that came out recently about putting junk breakfast cereal in the yard for the birds was not good news. The birds will fill up on this food and have no room for the food they naturally eat. Birds should not eat food designed for humans. No one should feed the ducks bread. You can easily find accurate scientific information about it online. I have always enjoyed your column. — Theresa, E., via email

Carry RX and doctor information

Dear Heloise: My husband had heart surgery and has other health issues. He now takes many pills a day (some over-the-counter, some prescription) and sees several doctors. I typed up a list of her daily pills and dosage amounts on a small piece of paper along with the date it was updated.

On the back of this paper, I printed the names and phone numbers of his doctors.

Then we laminated two sets: one for my purse, one for her wallet. I also shared the information with my adult children. It certainly makes it easier to check in at the doctor’s office, pharmacy or emergency room. —Mary, Little Rock, Arkansas

Mary, this is so important to have. You and your children can also enter this information into your smartphones for easy access. — Heloise

Unwanted calls

Dear Heloise: I read your advice in the Colorado Springs Gazette about not answering “yes” to lawyers who ask, “Can you hear me? I reply, “That’s (my first name),” rather than the usual “hello.” Once I realize the call is spam, I hang up and block the number. Also, the robocalls are activated by the word “hello”, so there is no response when I answer the phone, “It’s Vicki”. I also block these numbers. — Vicki Valdez, via email

Water conservation

Dear Heloise: Have you ever noticed that when you wash your hands, you turn on the water, lather up, and continue scrubbing and washing your hands WITHOUT using the water until you’re ready to rinse? You then rinse and turn off the water! Most of the water was not used and went down the drain. You can save gallons of water a week by getting your hands wet, then turning the water off while you’re lathering, then turning it back on when rinsing. —George U., via email

pet buddy

Dear readers: Several years ago, Archie was found tied to a fence and abandoned. He is now the king of everything he studies living with Sue and Jim Dow on 37 acres in Weare, NH

To see Archie, go to and click on “Pet of the week”. Do you have a four-legged friend to share with us? Send a photo and description to — Heloise

— Send a good hint to: Heloise, PO Box 7950000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000; fax: 1-210-HELOISE; email

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