Dear Heloise: This afternoon I got a call from a dear friend asking if she could wear white to my wedding. Frankly, I resent being placed in a position like that because tradition says no, but I've heard that is no longer true. What is the final word on this subject?

— Bride to Be in Pennsylvania

Bride to Be in Pennsylvania: I get this same question every spring, so here it is. NO, YOU CANNOT WEAR WHITE to someone else’s wedding. I don’t care if it’s a traditional wedding or a modern one. Unless the bride asks everyone to wear white, you should never assume it’s OK to wear white. Otherwise it’s considered rude.

Dear Heloise: I was surprised by a wedding invitation I received. The couple is having a rather large wedding with a live band, flowers, open bar and all the trimmings. However, their wedding invitation requested money instead of gifts, even going so far as to suggest a minimum of $100 from each guest. Is this a sign of changing times? Or are they just two very rude people?

— Joyce L., Salem, Ore.

Joyce L.: I’ve had a number of letters addressing this same question. Some couples ask for people to basically pay for their honeymoon because they’ve spent every penny on the wedding. The majority of letters that I receive find this distasteful; some people even going so far as to boycott the wedding. It’s up to you if you want to attend and bring a check or cash. The decision is a very personal one.

Dear Heloise: Have a space in your home that has an offensive smell? Use a one-pound can of coffee. Open it in the room and then close up the room. Leave it overnight, then in the morning, toss out the coffee and the room will smell much better. This is an old trick I learned years ago from a search and recovery team.

— Dina S., Topanga, Calif.

Dear Heloise: I live in the desert, and water is very precious to us out here. I also grow my own herbs and a few vegetables in a small garden. Whenever I run water for my shower I collect as much as I can in a bucket while I wait for the water to warm up. I use that water to water my garden, as well as any other water that is clean, such as rinse water that I use when washing my dishes. In the coming decades, clean water will become more valuable, and it's up to all of us to conserve as much as we can.

— Willie, Palms, Calif.

Dear Heloise: In the spring, I always put out cotton — the kind you find in medicine bottles. I put them out for the birds to make a nest out of this material. The birds go crazy over this soft cotton for their nests. I also cut up pieces of yarn into small lengths for them.

— Carol D., Bethesda, Md.

Heloise’s column appears six days a week at washingtonpost.com/advice. Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com.

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