Dear Readers: August is BACK-TO-SCHOOL TIME for many, and also is a great time for shopping and for sales! Transitioning from summer to fall, retailers want to get rid of summertime items, which is great for consumers! What’s going on sale right now? Look for deals on:

Back to school:

* Dorm furniture (crates, etc.)

* Bedding and linens

* Computers, especially laptops

* Backpacks

* School supplies for younger students, like paper, glue sticks and folders

* Craft supplies

* Large storage containers to help with organizing it all.

Summer items:

* Camping and outdoor athletic equipment

* Bathing suits

* Patio furniture.

-- Heloise


Dear Heloise: My mother-in-law just recently passed away, and we are working on thank-you cards for everything that was done for her service.

My hint is this: If you go to a funeral and there’s a sign-in book, PLEASE leave your address, not just your name. There are a lot of people who came to Mom’s service and did something, so we want to send them a thank-you. However, after sharing our list with other family members and looking up people online, we still don’t have addresses for some. -- Amy in Norfolk, Va.

Amy, I’m sorry for your family’s loss, and thank you for writing. Carrying address labels can make this task easier, and it saves space in the book, too. -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: I work in a library. We use flower pens so patrons do not walk off with them. Here is what you need to make flower pens:

Nonretractable pens, fake flowers and floral tape

Cut the stems of the flowers with wire cutters to about 1.5 inches long. Hot-glue each flower to its stem. (If not, the flowers will fall off with continued use).

Tear off a section of floral tape about 6 inches long. Put the flower against the top of the pen so the stem is aligned with the barrel of the pen. Tape the flower and pen together using the floral tape. Full flowers such as roses or carnations look best. -- Nanette, via e-mail

Love it! I’ve seen many of these flower pens and always thought them pretty as well as practical. -- Heloise


Hi, Heloise: My dad has passed along great wisdom. My favorite is “Always know three ways to get anywhere.” Dad grew up in war-torn Europe, where you didn’t always know if the road you intended to take would be there. But the “three ways” wisdom — which my children have now inherited — applies today when it comes to not getting stuck in traffic. That one bit of wisdom has saved each of us countless hours of otherwise wasted time at a dead stop on the interstate. — John in Universal City, Tex.

And saves gas (money), too! -- 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 Please include your city and state.

2012, King Features Syndicate