Dear Heloise: Just want to send out a little warning to anyone PICKING UP A PRESCRIPTION: Have your pills counted in front of you. We had a prescription for a narcotic. We were supposed to get 30, and received only 12. Someone enjoyed the rest of ours. Because I had no proof that the pills were missing, the pharmacy got away with this. So from now on, whenever I pick up a prescription, I will have it counted in front of me.

Another warning: Don’t be too hasty about paying bills from a medical procedure after you have paid your copay. Several times we have gotten a bill saying our insurance company had paid its part and we owed this amount. When I’ve called, they have told me to disregard this bill. -- A.C., via e-mail

It’s wise to check the medication to be sure it’s what was prescribed. You always should let the pharmacy know if pills are missing, as a safety measure. -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: If you have problems with the surface of a pie browning too quickly while baking, turn off the oven light! You’d be surprised how this will slow the browning process. Of course, it’s okay to turn the light on briefly to check the progress of the pie (be sure to use a collar on the pie crust at all times, though).

I’d also like to address the problem of “stiff laundry” as a result of line-drying. If you tumble-dry the load of laundry for about a minute in the clothes dryer before hanging it outside on the clothesline, much of the stiffness will be eliminated. -- Jo in Texas


Dear Heloise: I always save the microwave turntable plate! I use it for a work surface for hot-glue projects.

Also, grab and rescue refrigerator or freezer baskets from your broken appliance before they take it away, and use them for sturdy storage. For example, I like to use mine in the pantry for potatoes. -- Sherry G., Cecil, Ala.

Patricia F. in Huntsville, Ala., sent in this way to use an extra microwave plate. She says: “I use my discarded microwave plate as a cake plate. The edge keeps the icing from getting on the table or counter, and you can serve right from the plate.

Also, microwave plates are perfect for serving snacks at a party. The plate rotates, and no one has to reach over the plate. I read your column in The Huntsville (Ala.) Times daily. -- Heloise


Dear Heloise: I read the business-card hint. (Heloise here: The reader is referring to getting two business or doctor’s cards so you will have one handy.) I keep mine in a small, purse-size photo album. They are handy and, even better, are in alphabetical order. Keep two of the same in case you want to share. -- Sandy A., Tyler, Tex.

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