P.F. in California writes: This might be old hat to a lot of us who have spent time in the kitchen, but I watched a young person trying to scrub a crosshatched cooking rack over the holidays. I quietly mentioned that the rack has two different sides. I showed her that the “ribs” on one side go one way, then you turn it over and scrub the top ribs going the other way. She was overly pleased at how simple it became.

Martha G. writes via email: A bout with arthritis in my thumb has taught me to chop apples for cake with a pastry blender. My sister told me about chopping pecans with hers. I tried to make apple cakes for Christmas. I have an apple peeler/corer that I used, then put the apples in a bowl and chopped them with the pastry blender and saved a lot of thumb pain.

— King Features