Dear Sun Spots: The BookReach program of the Auburn and Lewiston Public libraries is very much in need of committed, reliable volunteers to share about one morning hour per week, reading aloud to preschool children in Lewiston or Auburn. People who are reasonably sure that they’re able to share some time in this fun way, after calling and hearing about what is required, are encouraged to apply. After attending a brief orientation, each reader is matched with a licensed family child care home, where she/he reads from a different bag of books every one to two weeks.

This is a wonderful opportunity for people who would enjoy introducing young children to the wonder of stories, and who are able to give to our community in a meaningful and positive way. Please phone Kathleen Demers, BookReach Coordinator, at 784-0135, ext. 213 to learn more. – Kathleen Demers, Lewiston.

Dear Sun Spots: I read your articles, daily. The information you provide is priceless. I would like to have a recipe for vanilla whoopie pies. In searching the Web, I can get all sorts of recipes, except vanilla. – Housewife from Lewiston

Answer: In addition to responses from readers, you might like to try the following recipe:

Vanilla whoopie pies ingredients: 1 cup shortening (Crisco), 2 cups granulated sugar, ¾ teaspoon salt, 5 cups flour, 2 whole eggs and 2 egg yolks, ½ cup hot water, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 2 teaspoons baking soda, 1½ cups buttermilk (or sour milk), 1 tablespoon vanilla extract. Method: Cream shortening, sugar, salt, eggs and vanilla together. Sift flour and baking powder, add soda with water and milk. Mix together (add chips at this point after mixing and mix a bit more) bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for four to five minutes.

Filling ingredients and method: 2 egg whites, 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, 1½ cups Crisco, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract or to taste. Beat together at medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add milk or cream if needed for consistency.

Dear Sun Spots: I have newspapers to give away to local charities for paper drives. Do you know of any Boy Scouts Troop or organization that takes newspapers? Thank you for your help in this matter. – John in Auburn.

Answer: Sun Spots is not aware of any, but perhaps there are some schools or readers out there who would be willing to share this information with you.

Dear Sun Spots: I need the services of a seamstress and can’t seem to find one. I think I previously saw a list of seamstresses that you published in Sun Spots. Please publish the list again. Thank you. – Gerry Morin, Lewiston.

Answer: Contact the following seamstresses:

Dorea Fortier of Chez Dorea, 277 Lisbon St., Lewiston, second floor (783-2908, ask for Dorea); Arvena Fogg, 14 Marion Drive, Auburn (783-8666); Beal’s Cleaners & Laundromat, 51 Hampshire St., Auburn (784-8581, ask for Valerie); Alterations by Judy, 571 Sabattus St., Lewiston, (783-6201, ask for Judy). Judy says her sister Cathy of Industrial Stitching, also at the same location and number, works with leather, hemming, patching and putting in zippers. Cathy also does camping tent repairs and zippers. You can reach Cathy via the same number; Gammon Dressmakers, 35 Vernon St., Auburn (786-5617, ask for Cheryl); Caldwell’s Wedding Plus, 245 Center St., Auburn ( 784-5197, ask for Lynn); Anna Kuna, 145 Summer St., Auburn (777-5835); Stitched with Finesse, 15 Key Hill Road, Greene (946-7242, ask for Paula); Judy Goss, Megquire Hill Road, Poland (998-4273).

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be posted at in the Advice section under Opinion on the left-hand corner of your computer screen. In addition, you can e-mail your inquiries to [email protected]

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