Dear Heloise: I've noticed now that my credit card bill comes with my credit score. What gives?

Helen R. in Pennsylvania

Helen R. in Pennsylvania: This is a fairly new service that some credit card companies provide. It can be easier to look for mistakes on your report when you see your score every month, but scores can vary from card to card, due to how the scores are calculated.

Even with this new service, it’s still a good idea to request your free credit report once a year from one of the major credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian or TransUnion. Here’s how:

Visit, call 877-322-8228, or write:

Annual Credit Report Request Service

P.O. Box 105281

Atlanta, GA 30348-5281

Dear Heloise: My energy company states on an insert in my bill that to save money, I should set my thermostat at 78 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer to cool, and 68 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter to warm. These are guidelines, of course; you may need to adjust for comfort.

Read your statement — there's some good information on it!

A Reader, via email

Dear Heloise: Is there anyone who still takes used greeting card fronts? Please reply in your column.

Irma B., Sioux Falls, S.D.

Dear Irma B.: St. Jude’s Ranch for Children is revamping its card program, but it is still accepting cards. Send the front of cards only (with no writing on the backs) to: St. Jude’s Ranch for Children, 100 St. Jude’s St., Boulder City, NV 89005.

Due to licensing issues, St. Jude’s cannot accept Hallmark, American Greetings or Disney cards.

St. Jude’s also graciously accepts monetary donations to help the kids, who are at the ranch because of abuse and neglect, among other reasons.

Dear Heloise: Those small, battery-operated tea lights are the solution to burning candles, not only at Christmas, but at any time.

They flicker like real flames, I never have to replace burned-out candles, and, most important, if I forget to turn them off, no big deal — no danger of fire!

Hillery, via email

Dear Heloise: It's that most wonderful time of the year — holiday gift-wrapping time. For years now, I have used my ironing board.

The height is adjustable — I move it around to where it suits me. No bending over, no sitting on the floor, no aching back.

Carolyn G., Charleston, S.C.

Dear Readers: Watching or listening to the TV is the perfect time to clean out drawers, bins and boxes of clutter.

I throw away/recycle things that are trash, donate things I can’t use, and keep what I really need. The task gets done quickly!

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

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