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DEAR HELOISE: Would you remind people that Christmas bonuses are one day's pay or one week's pay?

For years now I have cleaned homes; did over and above what is expected; never called in sick or was late. And at the end of the year I get at most $20 and no "thanks, you did a wonderful job." One woman gave me a 50-cent pair of stretch gloves. Why is it that an electrician can come, spend half an hour, charge $250 and think nothing of it?

We are the most unappreciated people on earth. I pray that people who have housekeepers read this and understand how valuable we really are.

-- Sad in Ohio

DEAR SAD: Anyone who likes a clean house should show appreciation to the one who cleans it. No one is required to give a bonus to their housekeeper or cleaning lady, although I agree that a bonus should be given, but the amount is strictly up to the person giving that bonus.


New uses for old fish bowls:

• Fill with dirt three-quarters of the way and use small plants to create an indoor garden -- a great kid's project.

• Use as an ant farm -- another interesting project for kids.

• Store marbles or other small toys in them.

• Use for crayon storage.

• Fill with soaps for the guest bath.

DEAR HELOISE: Many scammers rely on fear to force people into complying with their demands. One of the most common scams, using fear as a motivator, is telling you that your Social Security number has been used in fraudulent schemes and that you will be arrested if you don't do what the caller requests. Other popular scams center around a warrant for your arrest due to unpaid taxes, missing jury duty or that your utilities are about to be cut off for non-payment. Don't let fear make you a victim of this kind of fraud. Whenever someone tries to scare you or uses high-pressure tactics to make you do anything, hang up immediately.

--Norman in New York

DEAR READERS: When you make out your will, make sure you include instructions for the care of your pets after you're gone. Please don't assume someone will take charge of them and provide for their needs. They are beloved family members, so include them in your final wishes.

-- Heloise

Send a money- or time-saving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or email

ActiveStyle on 03/23/2020

Print Headline: Helpful Hints

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