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DEAR READERS: We're in the middle of Mental Health Awareness Week. Mental illness is a medical condition, and anxiety and mood disorders are the most common mental illnesses.

The goal of Mental Health Awareness Week is to erase the stigma and get people to talk about their mental health problems without fear of judgment. No one would judge someone who is sick with cancer or covid-19; mental health should be given the same consideration.

Don't be afraid to seek help for yourself or for someone you love.

DEAR HELOISE: I applaud your recent column on creating necessary bags for homeless people. A former homeless young woman said she really needed socks when she lived on the streets, especially in fall and winter. It's just another way to bless someone.

-- Peg, via email

DEAR HELOISE: After I dry a load of towels, I put the dryer on (while empty) for about five minutes. This blows out all the lint from the dryer and the vent leading outside.

-- Pat T.,

The Villages, Fla.

DEAR HELOISE: During all these months of quarantine, I have used many of your helpful hints. I'm hoping that you have a "recipe" for recycling my melting slivers of soap into a larger bar of soap. I have thought of microwaving the slivers with some water in a small container but was afraid to experiment.

-- Anne Hughes,

Orange, Calif.

DEAR READER: This is one of my classic Heloise hint requests. There are a few ways to do this:

• Wrap the slivers in a washcloth and wet it. Microwave for 10 to 15 seconds. Making sure the washcloth is not too hot, press tightly to form a bar. Carefully unwrap the bar and run it under cold water to set.

• Grate the slivers into an empty coffee can and add a little water. Put the can into a pan of water on the stove and heat on low until the slivers are melted. Do not leave it unattended. Pour the warm soap from the can into candy molds or muffin tins for a fun, decorative look. Then let cool.

• Put a splash of water in a bowl along with the soap slivers. Soak overnight. Pour into your blender, making sure it is less than half full. Blend on the grate setting adding water as needed until you get the consistency you'd like. You've just made liquid hand soap.

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

[email protected]

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