Dear Heloise: I use a drip coffeemaker, and my COFFEE LOSES HEAT as it sits in the cup. So, with the first cup, I pour hot coffee into it to pre-warm the cup. I then pour that cup back into the carafe and pour a second hot cup of coffee. The coffee stays warmer longer in the preheated cup, and the first cup is reheated in the carafe. -- R.K., Columbus, Ohio

This is such a simple hint — I love it! Coffee and tea are so popular, and during the cold winter, a hot, delicious cup is the perfect treat, which is why I wrote my Heloise’s Flavored Coffees and Teas pamphlet. To receive one, simply send $3 and a long, self-addressed, stamped (65 cents) envelope to: Heloise/Coffee, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. Did you know that January is National Hot Tea Month? When you make a cup of your favorite tea, stir it with a cinnamon stick for added spice flavor! -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: Recently, I used a recipe that called for 2 tablespoons of half-and-half. That left me with a nearly full carton. Since I’m not a coffee drinker, could you tell me some other uses for half-and-half? -- Christi A., via e-mail

You can use leftover half-and-half for several things. Add it to scrambled eggs, as a substitute for cream in recipes, for chocolate ganache (an icing, decoration or glaze on desserts), or in favorite cream sauces.

You also can freeze it for up to two months. -- Heloise


Dear Readers: Here is a hint about groceries that works well in my home. When my husband or I use the last of a product, we tear off the label and leave it on the counter or put it in the clothespin attached inside the pantry door. Whoever goes to the grocery store first knows exactly what item size and brand to pick up. -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: We buy our deer corn in bags that are reinforced plastic. Very sturdy! Does anyone out there reuse these bags? We use them to store items in the workshop/garage, but I have so many and would like to do something with them. Any ideas would be appreciated. -- A Reader, via e-mail

They can be used to cover plants in the winter or collect leaves in. They are great as a stronger garbage bag. Also, they can be used as a second bag around birdseed or other animal food bags! -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: My solution for removing tea stains from cups is using lemon juice. I buy the fake lemons with juice to leave sitting on my counter. After drinking the tea, I rinse the cup, then add a few drops of lemon juice, swish with a finger and the stain is gone. This is so simple. -- Carol in Minnesota

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

2013, King Features Syndicate