mystery icon






































mystery icon














mystery icon














mystery icon














mystery icon


















mystery icon


















mystery icon















mystery icon


















mystery icon









mystery icon
















mystery icon


















mystery icon
































mystery icon

























mystery icon




























mystery icon































mystery icon
























mystery icon

























mystery icon






















mystery icon



























mystery icon
















Title: Barbara Colley's Fun Stuff!

Ask Charlotte!

Maid-for-a-Day - Charlotte LaRue's fictional cleaning company - We Clean Up!Due to circumstances beyond my control (nasty spammers attacking my contest entry form!) I have been forced to discontinue the Ask Charlotte contest. I apologize for doing this and hope that at some future date I can resume this fun contest. Thanks to all of you who have entered and don't forget to, "Keep it Clean!!"

Check out Charlotte's helpful answers to past contest questions.

If you would like to stay in touch, click here to join my email announcement list.

Important Notice: Charlotte LaRue is a fictional character created by Barbara Colley. All "Ask Charlotte" suggestions and hints are intended for the reader's amusement only, so enjoy... but try at your own risk! The author does not guarantee results and will not be held responsible for injury or damage.

Ask Charlotte | Charlotte's Hints | Recipes | Celebrate! | Links

Send E-Mail

Sign Barbara's Guestbook

Join Barbara's email list! You'll be among the first to hear
about upcoming books, new contests, excerpts, and other
Charlotte La Rue Mystery news!

Join Barbara's Email List!
Click to subscribe to Barbara's Email News List

Charlotte's Hints

Charlotte says...

If the inside of your microwave oven has yucky, dried-on splatters, just toss in a clean, wet cloth, microwave for a minute, and the dirt will wipe away like magic!

Cut steel wool soap/scouring pads in half before using ... it takes twice as long for them to get rusty and disgusting that way!

Simmer a little lemon or apple juice with a handful of cloves to add a fresh and pleasant smell to the house. (Be sure to set a timer and watch the pot, though... don't let it boil dry or you'll have a different kind of smell!)

Run vinegar through your coffee maker once a month to keep things running smoothly. (Be sure to run plain water through a cycle afterwards ... unless you like the taste of pickled coffee!)



mystery icon

Past Winners

For February's Ask Charlotte contest, the winning question picked by Charlotte was a bit out of her expertise, so she asked Lori Handeland, award-winning author of Rising Moon, a friend who happens to be an expert on such matters to help her out. . .

Dear Charlotte,

How do you get werewolf drool out of the carpet?

          Signed "Howling Mad"
          (Submitted by Sharon Mitchell of California)

Dear Howling:

To get werewolf drool out of a carpet, mix holy water with a pinch of wolfsbane. But be careful! Wolfsbane is poisonous to both man and beast (which is why it works so well to repel werewolves). Then apply to the stain with a silver spoon beneath the light of a full moon.

Lori Handeland, Guest Cleaning Expert and
Author of the Nightcreature series of novels.
Visit Lori at and enter her contest!

Dear Charlotte,

I've got a two-year old daughter who just loves to throw cheese on the carpet and smoosh it in with her foot. Do you have any suggestions on the best way to clean it when she does this?

Cheesy in GA
(Submitted by BJ Deese of GA)

Dear Cheesy in GA:

First, give that precious little girl a hug for me. They're so sweet at that age. I should know. Barbara's youngest granddaughter will be two in January, so I'm around her quite a bit. But I digress. Back to the problem. First, think seriously about confining your little daughter to a booster seat at the kitchen table "before" giving her cheese. If all fails, when the little darling smushes the cheese in the carpet again, scrape up as much as you can using the dull edge of a plastic knife. Then, sprinkle a bit of corn meal onto the remains, rub in well, let sit for a while, then vacuum it up. If there's still a greasy spot left, try rubbing the stain with some waterless hand cleaner. Rinse with clear water, let dry, then vacuum.

For your interesting question, I'll be sending you a genuine, personalized packet of Charlotte LaRue handwipes and a mini notebook.

Good luck and keep it clean!

Charlotte searches high and low for solutions to stubborn cleaning problems, and she found this particular solution in Graham and Rosemary Haley's book, HALEY'S CLEANING HINTS.

Dear Charlotte,

How do you get blood out of cotton? Since you solve murder mysteries I'm sure you come across this a lot. *G*

Signed "Curious Yet Harmless! in CT"
(Submitted by Melissa Lawson of CT)

Dear Curious Yet Harmless,

Hmm, are you sure about that "harmless" part? After all, I wouldn't want to be accused . . . again . . . of tampering with evidence.

And I find it really strange that you should ask this question at this particular time. If I didn't know better, I would suspect that you've been spying on Barbara while she writes my next book--MARRIED TO THE MOP-(available February 2006)? Actually, in MARRIED TO THE MOP, I do have to contend with this bloody problem. I get blood on my apron, and (gasp!) it's the victim's blood. Talk about getting me into trouble! And all because I was trying to help out a client. Why, would you believe, I end up being a suspect? Can you imagine anyone thinking that I could actually murder someone?

But I digress. Back to your question. There are several solutions to this nasty little problem*. If it's old blood, and by this time, I would assume it is, then try applying a paste of baking soda and cold water to the stain. Let the paste dry, then rinse off the paste. If that doesn't work and the stain is still there, simply rub the stain with waterless hand cleaner and rinse in tepid water. And if that doesn't work and you're getting desperate, soak the area of the stain in some hydrogen peroxide, but only if the cotton fabric is white. Now, if that doesn't work, the only thing left to do is to get rid of the icky thing, then treat yourself to a shopping spree and buy something new. :-)

Good luck, and "Keep it Clean!"

*Thanks again to Graham and Rosemary Haley's book, HALEY'S CLEANING HINTS, Charlotte was able to find several solutions to this particular bloody problem.

Dear Charlotte,

What can be done to get rid of the 'awful' odor in your cupboard when you find that 1 or 2 potatoes have spoilt and gotten rotten. There is this brown liquid that seeps out and the odor is beyond explanation; it seems to permeate everything. Thanks.

                    Signed "Overcome in Canada"
  (Submitted by Robyn Lee of SK, Canada)

Dear Overcome,

Put away the gas mask. Help is on the way.

If you haven't already done so, and I hope you have, the first chore is to remove the offending potatoes. I'd suggest using rubber gloves, a wad of paper towels, then, dumping it all in an outside garbage can. Once you've wiped up that nasty brown stuff with a couple of damp paper towels, then soak a cleaning rag in distilled vinegar, squeeze out excess moisture, and wipe down all of the insides of your cupboards. (Old washcloths or old cotton socks are great to use for this type of thing.) This should get the job done, and should take away that putrid odor as well as disinfect your cupboards too. After the cleanup, to insure a sweet smelling cupboard, open up a small box of baking soda and set it inside the cupboard for several days. Baking soda is a wonderful, inexpensive product to use to absorb offending odors. But after several days, throw the baking soda away.

Good luck, and "Keep it Clean!"

Dear Charlotte,

O.K. I've tried everything but cutting out the armpits. How do you get those stains out of t-shirts? I've tried name brand laundry pre-treat products and suggestions on websites and nothing works. They are a little better if I use a pre-treat product and also use baking soda in the wash. Is there anything better???

                Signed "All Aglow in Wisconsin"
(Submitted by Donna Leggate, New Berlin, WI)

Dear All Aglow,

If your active family members insist on sweating, try putting the stinky garments in a sink with 1 cup of vinegar and ¼ cup salt. Soak for about an hour before laundering. Or you could try soaking the offending garments in a solution of 2 tablespoons cream of tartar and 1 gallon warm water for about an hour, then launder as usual.*

Now, about that sweating. As the old saying goes, "horses sweat, men perspire, ladies get all aglow." ;-) Which reminds me of another old saying..."an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." Perhaps shopping around for a stronger anti-perspirant would help solve that sweaty problem!

Now "Keep it Clean!"

*Contrary to what everyone thinks and what Charlotte would like them to think, she doesn't know everything. Occasionally she needs a bit of help giving advice. The wonderful source she always turns to is Haley's Cleaning Hints, a compilation by Graham and Rosemary Haley. But please don't tell Charlotte I told on her.

Dear Charlotte,

How do you think up your story lines? Are they based on true events? Thank you.

                Signed "Curious in Texas"
(Submitted by Martha Crutchfield, Justin, TX)

Charlotte's Answer:

For this question, I'll have to let Barbara give the answer!

Dear Curious:

My story ideas come from anywhere and everywhere. It could be from something I saw that interested me, a haunting song that evoked an emotional response, or simply a conversation with someone about a particular subject. For example, once I was on vacation with my family in Florida. I had never been sailing and became fascinated with the idea of using a sailboat as the setting for a romantic suspense. I wouldn't go so far as to say that all of my ideas are based on true events though. After all, I write fiction. But there are true events that have sparked ideas.

In WIPED OUT, my most recent book, I became fascinated with the idea of someone being poisoned. And yes, I know that sounds a bit strange, but as a mystery writer I have to keep an open mind to all types of murder possibilities, and I needed a new method to kill someone. I'd already had someone bludgeoned to death in MAID FOR MURDER, and in DEATH TIDIES UP, and POLISHED OFF, I had the victims shot, so I thought, why not have someone poisoned!

Thanks for your question and "Keep it Clean!"


Dear Charlotte,

What's the best way to get grease marks off of clothes?

            Signed "Greasy in PA"
(Submitted by Maureen Emmons in Yardley, PA)

Dear Greasy:

Don't you just hate those tell-tale grease spots? Barbara tells me that she once had a beautiful silk suit that was ruined because she indulged in a fried catfish platter and ended up with grease spots all over the front of the jacket. Not even the dry cleaner was able to get those grease spots out. Of course I reminded her that as the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

If the grease spots are a result of careless eating habits, then might I suggest wearing a bib. If you don't happen to have a bib handy, try tucking the corner of a napkin in the neckline of your garment with the rest of the napkin spread over the front of your garment. But if the grease spot is the result of grease popping while you're cooking, then wearing an apron is a must. If you did neither, and the clothing item is washable, but you're out of one of the many stain removing products available at the grocery store, then make a paste of baking soda and water, rub it into the spot, rinse with clean water,then wash as usual.

The wonderful book, Haley's Cleaning Hints, also suggests that waterless hand cleaner rubbed into the grease stain usually works very well. Then rinse the item in clean water.

Thanks for your question and "Keep it Clean!"


Dear Charlotte:

How do I get chocolate out of my ivory crocheted bedskirt? (I was hiding it from my husband when he came into the bedroom).

              Signed "Chocoholic in KY"
              (Submitted by Cheri Oggy in Elsmere KY)

Dear Sneaky Chocoholic:

First, shame on you for eating in the bed. ;-) Seriously, though...unless you’re ill and can’t get up, one should never eat in the bed. Food crumbs, and in your case chocolate, can attract all kinds of creepy critters. It gives me the shivers just thinking about what could be crawling on you while you sleep.

Second, I would really like to address this “hiding it from your husband” business, but since I’m not a marriage counselor, I guess I should really keep my opinions to myself. ;-)

Now, about that chocolate stain. There are a couple of things you can try. Blot the stain with club soda until it’s saturated, then rinse well with a mild detergent and cold water. Or, you can try blotting it with a waterless hand cleaner.

Good luck and "Keep it Clean!"


Dear Charlotte,

I ask the same question every month. I would like to know if there is a way to remove hard water stains on my clothing. I often get rust color stain and I cannot get them out.

                    Signed "Persistent in CT"
 (Submitted by Debra Guyette of Wolcott, CT)

Dear Persistent:

This one is truly a puzzle, but of course I love puzzles. There are a couple of solutions to this dilemma that might help. People with hard water should always remember to add more detergent than usual, enough so that the water will suds up really well. You might also try adding vinegar to the water during your rinse cycle, about ½ cup should be enough. Another solution: according to my old friend, Halley’s Cleaning Hints by Graham and Rosemary Haley, sprinkle the rusty area of the clothing with cream of tartar, roll the item into a tight ball, soak in hot water, then launder as usual. Of course you should always check the washing instructions on the clothing tag first, just in case the item shouldn’t be soaked in hot water.

And finally, if none of the above work, have fun buying a new wardrobe.

Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte:

What is the easiest way to keep animal hair off furniture?

          Signed "Hairy Furniture"
          (Submitted by Christy Mckenney of Mehoopany, PA)

Dear Hairy Furniture:

If you’re talking about your husband’s hair, then I’m afraid it’s a lost cause. Just kidding!

The easiest way to keep animal hair off furniture is to train your animal to stay off of the furniture. Of course if you insist on letting animals run wild in your home, then there are several solutions. If vacuuming alone won’t remove the offending hair, then try using a lint brush—one of those roller kinds with a handle that you use on clothes to remove hair and lint—or wipe the furniture using fabric softener sheets. Another solution that you might try is to loosely wrap masking tape, sticky side out, around your hand then pat down the piece of furniture. The hair should stick to the tape.

Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte:

How (if at all) can I remove mold from a painted wall?

          Signed "Moldy in Utah"
          (Submitted by Christy Hawkes of Tremonton, UT)

Dear Moldy in Utah:

Are you psychic? How did you know ahead of time that so many people in my town would need to know the answer to this question?

Thanks to the Louisiana State University Agricultural Center there is help for this problem.

WARNING! Exposure to mold can be very dangerous to your health. Molds produce spores that spread easily through the air. I strongly urge you to wear gloves and a mask or respirator that can filter mold spores when dealing with this icky problem.

You’ve heard the old adage, “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” Even though the mold is on a painted surface, I’d be very suspicious of what’s beneath that painted surface, but then I’ve been known to be a bit paranoid. Before you start tearing out that wall, try thoroughly cleaning the mold area first. Then mix ½ cup of household chlorine bleach to a gallon of water and use as a follow-up disinfecting cleaner. After cleaning, dry thoroughly and quickly. Wait several days to see if the mold returns. If it does return, I would clean it once more, dry it, and wait again. If it still returns, then get out your sledgehammer and see what’s behind that wall that’s causing the mold.

For more detailed information for dealing with mold, visit the Louisiana State University Agricultural Center Web site.

Best of luck...and Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte:
How do you go about removing the sticky residue left on glass and plastic after removing labels or price stickers? (Water and soap don't work).

Sticky in Vancouver
(Submitted by Sue Ahn of Vancouver)

Dear Sticky in Vancouver:

Don’t you just hate this kind of thing? I mean really! You spend your hard-earned money on a product and can’t get that ding dang label or price sticker off. Even if you do succeed in scraping the label or price tag off, that yucky residue is left. But I digress.

There are actually several solutions that you can try. Though you said that water and soap don’t work, have you tried soaking the item in HOT water? Soak the item until the hot water cools, then try to remove the label or price sticker and hopefully the residue. If that doesn’t work, try nail polish remover. Soak a cotton ball with nail polish remover, blot the stubborn residue until it’s saturated, and then try rubbing it off. If neither of those work, try soaking a clean cloth in warm white vinegar, place the cloth over the residue for several minutes, then try rubbing the residue off.

If none of the above work, then take the item back to the store and demand that they remove the mess. JUST KIDDING!

Good luck and “Keep it Clean!”


Dear Charlotte,

Now that summer is getting closer, I was wondering if you could offer any tips on cleaning the grill.

Dirty Grill in Illinois
(Submitted by Kim Westgaard)

Dear Dirty Grill:

I’m shuddering just thinking about summer. Not because I don't like summertime—I do—but in south Louisiana, with summer comes those pesky mosquitos, not to mention the 95+ degree heat and humidity. And of course there are also the threat of (big shudder) hurricanes. But as usual, I digress.

There are several possible solutions to this dirty grill problem. First, there’s an old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Once you have the grill clean, save yourself the big hassle of the messy clean-up by spraying it with a non-stick cooking oil before grilling. This way, the clean-up afterwards is much, much easier.

Oops, there I go digressing again. Back to the problem of actually cleaning the dirty grill.

Along with lots of elbow grease, a good stiff wire brush is always a handy tool to have around. But, if you don't happen to have one handy—the wire brush or the elbow grease—take about 2 feet of heavy-duty foil, crumple it into a loose ball, and use the foil to dry-scrub the top side and the bottom side of the grill. Then, wash with hot soapy water and rinse. Doing this “should” loosen up most of that gunk.

Another solution is to use an oven-cleaner product. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on this one.

Yet another solution is to simply place the grill in the grass the night before you plan to grill. Sometimes, the dew overnight will help loosen the burnt gunk enough so that finishing up with hot soapy water will do the trick. Of course always rinse well afterwards, then follow up by simply turning the flame of the grill on high, closing the lid for ten or fifteen minutes, and let the heat finish burning off what’s left.

If all the above fails, then it’s time to get a new grill.

Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte,

What is the best disinfectant or "smell-well" to use for under sink garbage can? Attracting ants like crazy and can't empty every day.

              Smelly in Wyoming
              (Submitted by Ruth Pitts of Wyoming)

Dear Smelly:

I have always found it fascinating and bit horrifying the places people choose to keep their garbage, and personally, under the sink in a closed-in cabinet (I assume), in my opinion, is just asking for problems. Besides, nowadays there are so many attractive and efficient garbage cans, why would you want to hide it? Would you believe that Barbara’s daughter has a stainless steel-looking one that has a motion sensor on the lid? Then, there are those foot pedal/lever types.

Sorry, as usual I digress, so back to your problems. I suggest that you remove everything from beneath the sink, then wash the garbage can and the insides of the cabinet with distilled white vineagar and let dry. Before lining the garbage can with a new trash bag, leave just a splash of pine cleaner in the bottom of the garbage can.

For the ant problem you really should try to find the outside source and eliminate it. They usually come inside through holes around the plumbing. But you might try simply spraying the inside of the cabinet with a commercial window cleaner instead of pricey insect sprays or try sprinkling a bit of boric acid powder around the inside edges of your cabinet.

Good luck and Keep it Clean!


Dear Charlotte,

I have an antique floor lamp. The shade is huge and is made of satin. It came out of a brothel from New Orleans. The shade is dirty from cigar and cigarette smoke. What would be the best way to clean this shade?

Shady in Virginia
(Submitted by Barbara Underwood)

Dear Shady:

My goodness! The words satin, brothel, and New Orleans conjure up images I don’t even want to think about. What on earth were you doing in a brothel? On second thought, don’t answer that, and I’ll try to keep my mind out of the gutter and on the question. Since the lamp is an antique, I would prefer that you get the advice of a “professional antique dealer”. But if you insist on doing it yourself, I researched the web and found the following sites that might be helpful:

Another possible solution is to mix a small amount of dish soap, ammonia, vinegar, and warm water. Use your hand mixer and beat this mixture until frothy. Use a sponge, and apply only the froth to the lampshade. Wipe off the froth with a clean, damp cloth, and then blow-dry the lamp with your hairdryer set on cool. A word of caution. Since I’m not certain how this would work on antique satin, try this particular solution at your own risk.

Good luck and “Keep it Clean!”


Dear Charlotte:

My dear dear husband went to help his stranded sister in his favorite white shirt. You guessed it ..he ended up under the car and now has a large black spot shoulder high on the back. He insist on wearing it even though I tried to "shout it out" without good results. Can this shirt be saved...because he WILL wear it!

                    Signed "Spotty in Texas"
 (Submitted by Pam Cassel in Mesquite, Texas)

Dear Spotty in Texas:

What a sweetheart, spots and all! And what a nice brother! I always wished that I had a brother, but Barbara gave me a sister instead. Not that there’s anything wrong with having a sister, but as my readers know, my sister Madeline can be a pill sometimes.

Anyway, back to your spotty problem. If after you tried to “shout it out”, you dried it in the dryer, then the heat from the dryer probably set the spot for good. Still, there are a couple of things you can try. Try using a waterless hand cleaner as a pre-wash. If that doesn’t do it and the shirt is 100% cotton, try filling your washing machine half full, add ½ cup of bleach, then soak the shirt in the bleach and water solution for about 15 minutes. Afterwards, run your washing machine through its regular cycle.

If all the above fails, then you’re going to have to get sneaky. Buy him another white shirt just like the one with the spot on it. Wash the new one a few times to make it look old, then sneak the spotted one out of the closet and replace it with the new one. He will never know the difference.

Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte,

Really, is there any quick and pleasant way to clean the bathroom?

                    Signed "Quick & Pleasant"
 (Submitted by Audrey Larson in Bloomington, MN)

Dear Quick & Pleasant in Bloomington:

The bathroom isn’t exactly my favorite room to clean either. I don’t know about “quick”. That would depend on how fast you work. But I do have a few hints that might help make it a bit more “pleasant.”

First, I’m a firm believer in doing the worst job first, so before you begin cleaning, determine in your mind that you will clean the bathrooms FIRST. Second, put on your favorite music, preferably something snappy--you know, the toe-tapping kind that makes you want to dance. Thirdly, gather all of your cleaning supplies (For this step, you might want to consider using a small plastic bucket or one of those plastic carriers). I normally suggest you always work your way from the top down, but in the bathroom, I begin by pouring a bit of pine cleaner in the toilet and let that soak while you clean everything else. Then, clean the mirrors, followed by wiping down the countertop and sink. At this point, don’t forget to dance a little jig to that snappy music.

Next, work on the tub and/or shower. Once you’ve finished the tub or shower, scrub the toilet inside and outside. The last step is sweeping/vacuuming and mopping. Oh, and don’t forget to empty the bathroom trashcan.

Once you have the entire bathroom clean, there are some helpful things you can do to keep it that way. What’s the old saying? “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” or some such non-sense. Anyway, keep extra cleaning supplies in the bathroom, such as pine cleaner and Windex. Each morning pour a bit of pine cleaner in the toilet. Hey, you’re going in there anyway, so why not take an extra minute to do this. Also, each time you shower or bath and you’ve dried off, use the towel you dried off with to wipe down the walls of the shower or wipe out the tub. Again, this only takes a minute or so and it helps prevent a soap-scum build-up. And finally, each time after you brush your teeth, use a damp washcloth and a dab of pine cleaner to wipe out the sink. If you take these preventive measures, then the next time you clean won’t be so daunting.

Hope the above suggestions help, but above all, remember, “Keep it Clean!”


Dear Charlotte,

How do you get red permanent ink markers like Sharpie or Bic off a couch cushion?

                    Signed "Couch Potato"
 (Submitted by Karen Robinette in Fenton Missouri)

Dear Couch Potato:

There are a few things you can try, but I would suggest trying them on an inconspicuous part of the couch first. One thing that comes to mind is hairspray. Spray the stain then rub it with a bit of regular soap. Rinse with a cold damp washcloth. You can also try a dab of rubbing alcohol as well, and again, rinse with a cold damp washcloth.

If all of the above fails, you only have two, maybe three choices left. 1)Buy a new sofa, 2) buy a dustcover for your sofa, or 3) get rid of the sofa and sit on the floor.

Just kidding about sitting on the floor.

Good luck, and from now on, please try to “Keep it Clean!”


Dear Charlotte,

Is there anything you can put on your walls to stop them from getting so many finger prints? And how do kids get prints all the way up to the ceiling?

                    Signed "Sticky Fingers"
 (Submitted by Michelle Draveski from Michigan)

Dear Sticky Fingers:

Hmm, you could staple sheets on your walls or have everyone wear gloves. Or you could set up barricades just out of reach of the walls. As for how the little darlings’ prints get all the way up to the ceiling, I have no idea, but maybe you could hire them out to a circus, since they’ve learned to climb walls.


Actually, the only solution I can think of is to buy a really good brand of paint, maybe even a semi-gloss, that will hold up to being scrubbed a lot, and make sure those precious children’s hands stay clean. Of course there is an old saying, “busy hands are happy hands,” so you might try keeping the little darlings too busy to climb the walls.  :-)

Keep it Clean!

Dear Charlotte,

Cleaning house is a never ending job. I was wondering if there was a magic wand that you could wave and the house would clean it's self? By the way I would like for it to do the laundry too.

          Signed "Tired of Cleaning"
          (Submitted by Virginia Horton of Kentucky)

Dear Tired of Cleaning:

Ah, Virginia, I’m afraid there is no magic wand—thank goodness. Why thank goodness? Because, without people like you, people like me would be without a job.

Unless you have a ton of money, I’m afraid that the only solution to your problem is to hire a maid cleaning service. Now, if you do have a ton of money, I understand that you can have a “smart house” built. Though I don’t know a lot about it, one of these “smart houses” comes pretty close to a magic wand.

Oh yeah, I just thought of yet a third solution. If you have children or even a favorite niece or nephew—young or older—maybe you could persuade them to do some of that cleaning for you once in a while. Hey, it’s worth a try, and not nearly as expensive as hiring a maid or building a new house.

I usually sign my letters with “Keep it Clean!” But in your case, Virginia, I’m not so sure it would do any good, so here’s wishing you the best,



Ask Charlotte | Charlotte's Hints | Recipes | Celebrate! |Free Offer | Links

International Cleaning Lady's Day - November 8

The following is taken from an email I received from Gesine Schulz, a German writer who belongs to my Yahoo group. She also writes about a cleaning ladyKaro Rutkowskymostly short stories which have been published in German crime anthologies and one American anthology.


"I thought it might amuse you (and Charlotte) to hear that I established the Internationaler Tag der Putzfrau (International Cleaning Lady's Day) on November 8th.

Motto: A Rose for the Cleaning Lady.
A white rose, of course ;-)

Another white flower or indeed bouquet is also acceptable, I think.

Good luck with MARRIED TO THE MOP! Great title.

Best wishes, Gesine Schulz"


I'm particularly fond of white roses (so is Charlotte!), in honor of Karo Rutkowsky, Charlotte LaRue, and hard-working cleaning ladies everywhere, let's put November 8th on the calendar. Happy Cleaning Lady's Day!

Thanks for sharing, Gesine!

mystery icon


Praise, Prayers and Observations
Evan Marshall
BreakThrough Promotions Public Relations Specialists
Kensington Books
Kensington, Zebra, Pinnacle Authors - KaZaP!
Silhouette Intimate Moments/Harlequin Books
Murder She Writes
Mystery Lovers Corner
Mystery Writers of America
Mystery Writers of American Southwest Chapter
Sisters in Crime
Malice Domestic

Murder Express
Romance Writers of America
RWA Kiss of Death Chapter
Louisiana Book Festival
Novelists Inc.
Editorial Services


Barbara's Favorite Booksellers

Visit to find your local independant bookstore.

Visit the Gallery page for photos of
Barbara's signings at Barnes & Noble, Waldenbooks,
and these terrific independent bookstores!

2727 Prytania St.
New Orleans, LA 70130
phone: 504-895-2266
fax: 504-895-0111

2342 Bissonnet St.
Houston, TX 77005
phone: 713-524-8597
toll-free outside Houston area: 1-888- 4-AGATHA
fax: 713-522-7945

mystery icon

Ask Charlotte | Charlotte's Hints | Recipes | Celebrate! |Free Offer | Links

Mystery | Women's Fiction | Author | Fun/Contest | Gallery | Recipes | Excerpts | Media | Guestbook | Home


Page Designed and Maintained by:
Eclectic InterNetWorks

~ Affordable Web Pages
for Publishing Professionals ~



2004-07 Eclectic InterNetWorks
and Barbara Colley





Mystery Women's Fiction Meet Barbara Fun Stuff! Recipes Photo Gallery Excerpts Media Kit home