Dear Sun Spots: I am looking for a product called Fels-Naptha, an old cleaning and laundry soap bar. Is there anyone in the area who sells this? Thank you. – Carrie, Dixfield.

Answer:
In addition to responses from readers, Sun Spots located Fels-Naptha at the Lewiston and Auburn Hannaford and Shaw’s Supermarkets. We recommend calling the store to ensure availability if you are making a special trip, but if you’re there, check the aisle with other laundry detergents.

Fels-Naptha is a product of Dial and has been used for more than 100 years. It can be used as a laundry pre-treater and stain remover as well as for general cleaning on some floors, tubs and showers. It’s also an effective way to remove poison ivy resin from clothing. The resin can remain on clothes for more than one year. Washing with Fels-Naptha will eliminate the dangerous resin from your clothing and prevent further outbreak.

Dear Sun Spots: Can you tell me how long I must keep a receipt of bills I have paid, such as tax, insurance, telephone, lights, oil, water, hospital, also prescription. Some people say five years and some say seven years. And if you live in a small apartment where do you keep all of these papers? – No Name, Lewiston.

Answer: Sun Spots checked with a variety of sources and the general consensus is to keep tax records for seven years. This will help with preparing future tax returns and if you file an amended return. Additionally, the IRS recommends keeping records indefinitely if you file a fraudulent return or you do not file a return.

Keep records of other bills for a year. After the year, go through bills and be sure to shred what you have decided not to keep. However, bills for big purchases, such as jewelry, appliances, antiques, cars, collectibles, furniture, computers, should be kept in an insurance file for proof of their value in the event of loss or damage. Always remember to shred records before discarding.

According to the book “Minimum Space, Maximum Living” by By Barty Phillips, sort your paperwork into categories such as paid bills, bank papers, insurance and hospital papers and keep them in separate folders. Use an expanding file folder to separate. You can keep file folders on a bookshelf or in a small bureau. Having dealt with this problem before, Sun Spots used an expanding file folder and stored on a closet shelf, where it was easy to get to when needed.

Dear Sun Spots: With the rising cost of home heating fuel and food, winter is going to be particularly difficult for many Maine seniors this year. In an effort to prepare seniors ahead of time, SeniorsPlus is inviting seniors across Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford counties to attend one of their Winter Survival Fairs. The events will be held in Rumford, Fryeburg, Farmington, Livermore Falls and Lewiston throughout the months of October and November. SeniorsPlus, Community Concepts, Western Maine Community Action, the Public Advocates Office, Department of Health and Human Services, Central Maine Medical Center, and the Healthy Maine Community Coalition will be on hand to assist seniors in finding cost savings and hidden money available to them to help pay for food and fuel this winter.

There will also be staff on hand to help complete Tax and Rent Rebate Forms for the Maine Circuit Breaker program, and who will also check Medicare benefits to make sure attendees aren’t paying too much out of pocket for prescription drugs. In addition to the benefits checkup, attendees will learn how to winterize their home, be trained on what to do in the event of an emergency and/or evacuation, and can also get a free health screening.

Events will be held: Oct. 22, 1 to 4 p.m. at the SeniorsPlus Lewiston Office; Oct. 23, 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fryeburg American Legion Hall; Nov. 6, 1 to 4 p.m. at the Rumford American Legion Hall; Nov. 10, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Franklin Memorial Hospital; and Nov. 14, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Murray Hall, Livermore Falls.

All events are free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. Seniors and their family members are strongly urged to attend. To RSVP call SeniorsPlus at 1-800-427-1241. – Kim Goding, SeniorsPlus.

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 www.sunjournal.com 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]


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.