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Getting ready to plant your gardens

By Karen Johnson,  U of M Extension Have you put much thought into your garden yet this year? Now is a great time to take a soil sample, consider plant placement within the garden, and to get started planting some of the cool-season germinating vegetables. Do you know what the nutrient levels are in your…

Childhood friendship

I’m going up north this week to the home of my mom and dad in Schroeder. Even though I moved from there 37 years ago, it still feels like I belong there. I’m going to visit one of my best friends since Kindergarten. She was also the Valedictorian of my graduating class. Thirteen years of…

Finding a new me

By Jill Pertler Yesterday I changed a light bulb. It was the overhead one at the entrance to our basement stairs. I had to use a stepping stool in order to reach it. That light bulb has burned out many times in the 20 years since I’ve lived in my house, but this was the…

The real guilt of grief

By Jill Pertler If grief itself weren’t bad enough, she often is accompanied by another formidable beast. I’ve encountered him lately, and his name is guilt. Before I go any further, please suppress your instinct to tell me I shouldn’t feel any guilt because I loved fully, madly, and deeply, and went above and beyond…

Toes are meant to be seen and not housed

Jill Pertler “Slices of Life My toes are always the first to come and the last to go. As the seasons change, and the weather warms in the spring, I can’t wait to get rid of my real shoes in exchange for sandals. Weeks before the warm weather actually arrives, I polish my toes in…

This is Sunshine Week

By Jean Doran Matua, Editor The weather this week may not reflect it, but this is Sunshine Week in America. Not the weather kind of sunshine, but the light that America’s newspapers shine on local government, in particular. Studies show that towns without active local newspapers tend to pay higher taxes. Why? Because there is…

Exercise your right to know, during Sunshine Week and beyond

By Ray Cooney, The Commercial Review Sunshine is great. But it only matters if you take advantage of it. The following situation has played out at public meetings recently: Concerned resident: “I’m upset because I had no idea this was going on.” Public official: “Well, we’ve had announcements on the radio. And information has been…

Let’s aim for better than ‘normal’

Jean Matua “From the Heart It’s been one year since the world shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Back then, most of us thought it would only be a few weeks of disruption to our lives. Boy, were we wrong. Whether we acknowledge it or not, the pandemic affected every aspect of our lives.…

Stepping forward

Jill Pertler “Slices of Life” I’m still struggling, but I know I have to step forward on a path I wouldn’t have considered six months ago. Because it didn’t exist six months ago. The rest of the world is business as usual. People all around me are walking on the paths of their choosing. I…

You’ve got this

By Jill Pertler “Slices of Life” We all have something that seems just out of reach, just beyond our grasp. Whatever it is – you’ve got this. To the 4 year old who just wants to ride a bike like her 6-year-old sister, but despite being in training with dad running behind for the last…

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