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HINTS FROM HELOISE

Garden City Telegram

Alone and lonely

Dear Readers: On this Christmas Eve, let's remember those of us who may be alone - alone and lonely. Loneliness is a big problem this time of year, and with COVID, the problem may be bigger than in previous years.

Our seniors can suffer a lot with loneliness, and when we are under stay at home orders, it's difficult to get out to visit them. Difficult, and possibly dangerous.

Who is in this group? Homebound folks, those with loss of mobility, those whose spouse has passed and folks who are limited with their hearing or sight.

So many people need help. What are some solutions? Bring a plate of food to a senior, call them, and here's a big one: Offer to help them set up the technology to participate in video calls with family!

Merry Christmas, everyone, and enjoy this time with your close family, but do it safely. We will get through this. - Heloise

ORGANIZATION NATION

Dear Heloise: My five grandkids were always figuring out what was in their Christmas packages under the tree by the tags, size and sounds. I decided to make it more difficult (and fun) by not putting name tags on packages.

I wrap each kid's gifts in one design of paper only. To make it harder for them to guess whose is whose, the boys' gifts may be in girl-themed paper, and the girls' gifts in "boy" paper.

Of course, I have to write down in a secret place which paper belongs to which child so I don't forget!

Then, on Christmas Day, before we pass out the presents, I give them each a card with a swatch of the paper inside that matches their gifts. It makes it more fun for them and for me to keep them guessing and to see if they guessed correctly.

It also makes handing out gifts easier; there is no need to read name tags. I read your column in the Dayton Daily News. - Christy J. in Vandalia, Ohio

WRAP IT UP ...

Dear Heloise: I enjoy your column in The Villages (FL) Sun newspaper and have a suggestion. I use all those address labels to wrap Christmas presents instead of using tape. They are a colorful addition to the wrapping paper and a reminder to our loved ones about our address. 

Also, as Christmas card season approaches, I cut the address labels from cards received to put in my address book. Happy holidays! - Linda K., via email

EGGNOG

Dear Readers: A drink synonymous with the holidays is eggnog, but how much do you know about it? Let's check it out:

-  Made from milk, cream, sugar, cinnamon or nutmeg, egg whites and egg yolks, rum or whiskey can also be added!

-  Originally developed in the U.K., eggnog is now more popular in the United States.

-  It seems to be one holiday tradition that, like fruitcake, you either love or hate! - Heloise

Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5001, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com. I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate Inc.