Hints from Heloise: Space blankets a must-have

Dear Heloise >> I enjoy your column in the Pasadena Star News. I’m responding to the person who recently offered the excellent idea of keeping a sleeping bag/warm blanket in the car for an emergency, especially if one lives in colder climates. Even in the more southern parts of the country, temperatures can get dangerously cold at night.

I’d like to add a suggestion to also keep at least one “space blanket” (also known as a mylar or emergency blanket) in the car. Their design reduces the heat loss in a person’s body, which would otherwise occur due to thermal radiation, water evaporation or convection.  Their low weight and compact size before unfolding make them ideal when space or weight are at a premium.

They can be easily stored in a first aid kit and in the glove compartment. And they are inexpensive, usually between $2 to $5. Most camping stores, stores that carry camping supplies and big box stores have them readily available.

P.S.: A few years ago here in SoCal, we had an unusually frigid cold snap that killed plants. I have a container garden and wrapped the plants in space blankets, and they are all still thriving!

— M.T.S., Monrovia

Dear Heloise >> Adding to the hint of uploading all your photos to your computer, I took it a step further. After I scanned all my photos, I bought a 9-by-12-inch digital photo frame that holds a huge amount of photos that you can add to or delete from at will.

The model I have has a motion detector, so it doesn’t cycle through the photos when no one is around. It instead goes into slideshow mode when motion is detected, if you keep it on. They are a little pricey, but well worth it.

Now, I don’t have to keep a huge box of photos that sits in the closet, or even in a file on the computer that doesn’t get viewed often. The smaller ones also make excellent gifts, especially if you preload photos onto it.

— Debi Robinson, Mountain Rest, South Carolina

Dear Heloise >> I was just reading your column and saw the suggestion from Jean in Connecticut about handicap placards.

Remember to remove the placard from the mirror while driving. I see so many driving with it hanging from their mirror here in Texas. However, if you read on the placard, it specifically says to remove it while driving. The reason for this is that it causes a blind spot, and you might not see a car when pulling into a roadway, which can cause a wreck.

— Donna L., Belton, Texas

Dear Heloise >> When shopping at Sam’s, I put items in my buggy with the UPC labels facing up where they are easy to see. Then I use self-checkout and scan the items without removing them from my cart. This saves not only time but the strain of lifting items to and from the buggy multiple times. This is especially handy when buying large or bulky items.

— Ann W., Temple, Texas

Write to Heloise

P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000

Fax: 210-HELOISE

Email: Heloise@Heloise.com

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