"I feel if anyone can find it Reader Exchange can," asserts Arlene Smith of Palm Harbor in a recent letter. We shyly agree (shyly because our readers are the column's not-so-secret weapon, deserving of all such compliments).
So, readers, we continue with Arlene's challenge. She has looked high and low and parts between for a Hallmark puzzle, "Toys from the Attic." The search has lasted five years. The puzzle is so elusive because it has been discontinued. If you have this puzzle and care to part with it, please reward Arlene's confidence by phoning her at (813) 784-7464.
Chris Seiber of Largo would appreciate learning where to purchase custom clear plastic covers for living room furniture. If the covers aren't available in stores, might they be ordered from a specialty catalog? Chris may be reached at (813) 585-1704.
Laura Coggin of Palm Harbor was disappointed recently in a way many of our readers can understand. A TV event she wished to videotape fell prey to mechanical problems in the VCR. The occurrence she was hoping to record was Princess Diana's funeral in its entirety, so this upset admirer of the princess wonders whether any readers were more successful than she and would permit her to copy their tapes. Chances are good, one thinks, that legions of VCRs were cranking during that broadcast. If yours was one of them, Laura would love to hear from you at (813) 787-2677.
We occasionally get a request for a list of organizations wanting used greeting cards for projects. Evelyn Cerutti's is simply the latest. It's information many of us would find useful; it seems such a waste to toss out beautiful cards so carefully chosen. Evelyn's phone number in Dunedin is (813) 734-4044. (Note: the week after Christmas, the Home&Garden section prints a list of such organizations, and some of them want all kinds of cards, not just Christmas.)
Elizabeth Kadlechik of Spring Hill asks how to remove water spots on marble window sills. Send suggestions in care of this column, please.
Do you have an extra copy of Isaac Walton's classic, The Compleat Angler? Mrs. Sigmund Makofski of Clearwater would like to hear from you at (813) 796-3642.
Linda Myers of St. Petersburg is trying to complete a set of books for her son-in-law. With your help, he may find them under his Christmas tree. Known as Edge, this is a Westerns series. The books are paperbacks no longer in print and cannot be found in local bookstores. If you qualify as a Christmas elf for Linda, please call her at (813) 576-3813.
Sis Burger of Brooksville hopes someone also can help her with a special gift. Her husband, George, loves the song Moonlight Madonna, a 1934 hit played on the organ by Jesse Crawford. George has a birthday on Nov. 27, and Sis would love to be able to present the words and music of this song as a surprise. She may be contacted at (352) 796-8891, and if George answers you know what not to do!
Rrrrrring! Instruction Limbo calling about Helen Starewicz's two sewing machines, a Dressmaker portable, serial number 00593, model 295, and the Countess Portable, number 14225. Helen's number in Hudson is (813) 862-3161. You folks know the drill when Instruction Limbo calls!
Some folks interested in creating lovely things need our help. First, Rose Hough of Tarpon Springs is part of a group looking for supplies and help in learning to make cut lamp shades (those with painted cutouts). Can someone suggest a source of instruction? Please call Rose at (813) 943-9805.
Another eager student, Mildred Benner of St. Petersburg, wishes to learn about Japanese tatting. Sources, anyone? She also wants to hear from needle-tatting aficionados in our area. Needle tatting employs a 5-inch-long needle instead of a shuttle. She also would love to find a local source for needles and fine tatting thread, items she now must mail order from Illinois. Give Mildred a ring at (813) 541-2966 if you can help.
Send questions, answers and tips to Reader Exchange, Home & Garden, the Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg 33731. Only questions of general interest will be answered. Requests will be accepted only by mail; phoned requests will not be accepted. Except in unusual circumstances, readers must agree to the publication of their addresses and phone numbers to be considered for the column.