How Do I Keep My Buns From Being Squished?


Dear Reena,

For years I have made cinnamon buns, and they always taste delicious. The problem is the buns open as they bake, and the shape is slightly squished from cutting the dough. I would like to present restaurant-quality cinnamon buns to my family. Any suggestions? — Amelia

Dear Amelia,

Here are a few suggestions to fix this common challenge. After the dough rises, handle it as little as possible. Add filling to the rolled-out dough, being careful that one of the long edges of the dough remains free of sugar. Roll the dough and press the dough closed with your fingers. Some bakers seal the edge with a brush of egg white. Instead of cutting cinnamon buns with a knife, use dental floss. Slide the floss under the roll, and then draw the ends up cutting through the dough. The dough will not become compressed, and the round shape will remain intact.

Dear Reena,

I have a large, vinyl exercise ball that I have tried to clean, but it has sticky areas. Why would it be sticky? Is it starting to break down from age? — Deb

Dear Deb,

Absolutely. Rubber is a petroleum-based product that will eventually break down over time. High humidity or heat may also impact the life of the ball. Proper maintenance of exercise balls helps increase the life of the equipment. Wash with a cloth and Dawn dish soap, and rinse with water. If there are only a few sticky areas, clean the ball with rubbing alcohol and rinse with water.

Feedback from Wise Readers

Re: Baby Power in Cat Litter Boxes

Hello Reena, 

My mom alerted me to a hint she saw in your column recently from a contributor named Eric who suggested the use of baby powder to keep your cat’s litter box smelling fresh. I did that and paid dearly. Cancer by talcum is not limited to humans. All four of our cats developed cancer from being exposed to baby powder in their litter boxes. They all developed lung cancer (Mesothelioma), abdominal cancer, bowel cancer and lip/nasal cancer. They all died within 26 months of each other. I spent thousands of dollars on treatments, medications, surgeries and palliative care. Please, please, I beg of you, remove this “hint” from your column and advise your readers why the hint has been removed. Talcum or baby powder has been proven to cause cancer in humans and unfortunately, this includes our beloved pets. — Linda

Reena Nerbas is a popular motivational presenter for large and small groups; check out her website: Ask a question or share a tip at