Dear Heloise:

Help! The stopper in my favorite cut-glass decanter is stuck tight. I can't get it out, and it just makes me mad! Please tell me that you have a solution, because I really miss using the decanter.

Stuck in Seattle

Here's a Heloise Hint to the rescue. Pour a few drops of glycerin (found at drug stores) around the neck of the bottle. Allow the decanter to sit for a while, and then see if the stopper can be removed. If not, pour a little more glycerin and try again. It might take several days. Good luck!

Do you have a decanter that has a stain on the inside that you haven't been able to remove? Don't fret -- try the following: Fill the decanter with plain ol' white vinegar, and let it stand overnight. In the morning, add some uncooked rice and then shake, shake, shake to remove the stains on the inside. Wash with hot, soapy water, then rinse and dry.

Dear Heloise:

I just wanted to thank you for a great hint I read in the paper. I'm a church secretary, and I get frustrated when mail is returned from the hospital because the patient I've sent it to has already returned home. Your hint to put the patient's return address on the envelope is so logical! It ensures that the patient receives the card and knows the church family was thinking of him or her in a timely fashion.

Julie Young

Fredericksburg, Va.

Dear Heloise:

Hi! I recently tried to clean under my stove with my vacuum attachments. None of them fit into that small space. I didn't want to move the stove, so I took a wooden spoon (one with a fairly long handle) and used a piece of double-stick tape to hold a piece of paper towel on the handle. I think the piece of double-sided tape sucked up more dust than the paper towel. Now under my stove is dust-free.

Meg Trischitta

Staten Island, N.Y.

Dear Heloise:

Another use for rubber bands: I place bands around the top and bottom of a paperback book that I carry in my purse. This keeps the pages and cover from being torn or dog-eared.

Bette Jaeger, Stanhope, N.J.

Send a money- or time-saving 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 when faxing or using e-mail. I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.(c)2003, King Features Syndicate