Hints From Heloise: A new home for VHS tapes

August 11, 2012

Dear Heloise: I have more than 100 VHS tapes (movies, children’s, etc.) that I just can’t bear to toss in the garbage. I have called some charity thrift stores, but they won’t take them, nor will day-care centers, senior centers, children’s hospitals, etc. We live in a DVD world, it seems. Any suggestions? -- Terry G. in Florida

Terry, there is a group called Alternative Community Training that will take the tapes. ACT employs folks with disabilities, and they help recycle VHS tapes and other electronic products. The address is: Alternative Community Training Inc., 2200 Burlington St., Columbia, MO 65202. You can call ACT at 800-359-4607.

PET PAL

Dear Readers: Regina, via e-mail, sent a picture of her 10-year-old white poodle, Goddie, lying on one of his huge dog beds. Regina says that he has a few beds his size, but he prefers the big bed, because he thinks he is a really big dog! To see Goddie and our other Pet Pals, visit www.Heloise.com and click on “Pets.” -- Heloise

THE PROCESS OF GRIEVING

Dear Heloise: I had to put my dog to sleep because she was suffering from cancer. She had been by my side for 10 years and was truly my best friend.

When someone is grieving the loss of a pet, just be there for the person and let him or her talk. Ask questions about the animal: funny stories, any quirks or unusual habits of the animal, trips you went on, etc. LISTEN to the person talk about the pet. This is his or her time to grieve. Give the person the gift of your time.

Having you recount stories about pets you’ve lost, I’m sorry to say, is not as helpful as listening. I am very sorry about your loss, but for right now, the only thing I can think about is my own grief. -- Sharon in Texas

Sharon, it can be devastating to lose a beloved pet. I’ve been through it many times. Also, I’ve written about it in this column. To read these columns, which I hope will help you and others in this situation, you can visit my Web site, www.Heloise.com. -- Heloise

CAREFUL CRUISING

Dear Heloise: Since there is so much highway construction in the summer, please advise your readers to turn on their flashers as soon as they realize they are going to have to come to a stop or slow markedly in a work zone.

Too often, the drivers following do not realize that the car ahead has come to a stop. Having your flashers blinking will at least give you a better chance of being seen. -- Jacqueline in Denison, Iowa

Jacqueline, on first glance this sounds like a good idea. However, be aware that many states say you should NOT use emergency flashers when the car is in motion. Readers, check with your state-specific laws. -- Heloise

Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Tex. 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com. Please include your city and state.

2012, King Features Syndicate

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