Commentary

Wed
06
Dec

’Tis the season for offering time, treasure to people in need

’Tis the season for giving in America and we’re reminded yet again what a difference we can make in the lives of people in need.
We are truly blessed here in Hamilton County, though you don’t have to look hard to find people who for whatever reason are struggling this time of year. Giving of one’s time or treasure is a chance to make a difference, one person, one family at a time.
Hamilton County is known for its generosity, with a history of supporting various non-profit organizations and charitable causes. That tradition is something to be proud of, and also sets the bar high for generation after generation to seek out opportunities to take care of our own.
Giving a donation that provides a holiday meal, a gift for a child who might not otherwise find much underneath the tree, or supporting causes with a pledge that will pay dividends throughout the year is what the season is all about.

Wed
29
Nov

Sunshine always coming sooner than you think

While uptown recently I entered a business and was asked, “How is your day going?” I paused and then rattled off my happenings for the day.
First I was told the automatic garage door opener wasn’t working and couldn’t be fixed for several days. The opener needed a new circuit board and the repairman didn’t have one with him and may have to order one.
Second episode came when the Betterhalf reported her automatic dishwasher had a broken tray bracket and the manufacturer does not make that model anymore.

Wed
29
Nov

Shopping at home worth your time this holiday season

It starts earlier every year!
The deluge of holiday promotions and retail advertising geared toward Christmas shoppers is in full force now, a month before friends and family begin gathering around the tree to exchange gifts and well wishes. It used to be that turkey with all the trimmings were served before that process took center stage, but those days are long gone.
Now Black Friday rings the bell as the official start of the Christmas shopping season, followed by the online Cyber Monday phenomenon. Indeed, the retail landscape has changed dramatically in recent years.
One tradition that will always be part of my routine is shopping local, whenever possible. Area retailers are working harder than ever these days to carry gift items that appeal to all the names on my list.
Here are just a few of the known benefits of what shopping local can mean to your community:

Wed
22
Nov

Political turmoil could be behind blood pressure rise

Most of us remember when our blood pressure was close to normal, or at least at a level that warranted no medication or just a slight change in our lifestyle. Of course since that time, new health guidelines now show that half of U.S. adults are plagued with high blood pressure. The newer, lowered threshold just added another 30 million Americans to those with the condition.
It is suggested most of us need a healthier lifestyle and not more medication to meet the new recommended 130 over 80 guideline. Heck, I didn’t meet the old 140 over 90 on a regular basis even with limited medication. Now I am expected to change my lifestyle at my age?

Wed
22
Nov

Opting up to Class B would have allowed NSAA picture to clarify

Would the Aurora Huskies be better suited as a little fish in a big pond or a big fish in a smaller pond? The hunter or the hunted?
That was essentially the question facing the Aurora 4R School Board last week in a meeting that in many ways represented a crossroads for our school and community. Aurora wasn’t the only community facing that decision this year, and in fact this will likely not be the last time the 4R board has to weigh in on that dilemma. Our enrollment numbers, at this point, fall right on the classification line, a frustrating fact of life.
The decision, as you know, drew a split 3-3 vote, which means the Huskies football team will take the field as a Class C1 squad for the next two years based on Aurora’s current boy enrollment. It seems other Aurora sports will remain Class B for the coming year.

Wed
15
Nov

2017 has been the best year for an optimist

We all catch ourselves thinking we’re experiencing the worst of times and this old world continues to slip deeper into despair. As for myself, I have more times than I want to admit classified myself as a pessimist.
In a recent Rotarian magazine, an article written by author and regular magazine contributor Frank Bures points out most things feel worse than they actually are.
He explains those who view the year 2016 as the worst year ever and reinforced that idea by citing celebrity deaths, election results, climate change, racial tensions, crime, etc., became unstoppable and in 2017 the decline still hasn’t stopped.
“This downbeat trend has accelerated among people of all political stripes and it is noteworthy because it goes against the strongest current in American culture: our optimism and problems are meant to be solved,” Bures noted.

Wed
15
Nov

Millennials plant seed for great idea with community garden

Though the ground is hard now and a cold Nebraska winter approaches, the seeds have been sown for a unique new project in Aurora which has all kinds of promise and potential.
Energetic members of a new Aurora Garden Club, led by millennials with a fresh perspective and lots of creative ideas, have announced plans for a community garden to take root in the spring. As reported in a story in this week’s edition, Memorial Hospital gave the concept a running start by offering a piece of land to use along Highway 34 north of the hospital, thus a health-based partnership has been born.

Wed
08
Nov

Two closet halves are never equal between husband, wife

Does “the man of the house” have too much . . . or not enough closet space in his home?
That debate between husband and wife has gone on for years in our own household and I am sure in most homes the same scene has been repeated. To those engaged in the dilemma it will come as no surprise which spouse wins the one-sided debate.
In our household with four full-sized (and full) closets plus two coat closets near our front and back doors, there is more than ample evidence the Betterhalf is the dominant head of our house. Her clothing occupies 60 percent of our joint bedroom closet; all of a guest bedroom closet; and 50 percent of my basement office closet. I should also add my “half” of the basement office closet space is confined to four shirts, two jackets, office supplies and household records.

Wed
08
Nov

Veterans, families deserve nation’s heart-felt gratitude

Thank you, veterans.
That simple, heartfelt message rings throughout America this week as we honor the men and women who are now serving our nation, as well as all those who have ever worn the uniform on our behalf. We, as a nation, simply can’t thank you enough for the sacrifices you and your families have made.
Respect and admiration for our troops, past and present, has grown noticeably stronger in recent years. Whether you are at a sporting event, community parade or small family gathering, when veterans are recognized there is a sincere sense of oneness in the air. It’s a powerful emotion, as it should be, reminding us all that we are proud to be Americans.

Wed
01
Nov

Halloween filled with treats, no tricks

Well, I’m a day late. Because I try to write a column a week early, Halloween snuck up on me. It’s not that you missed on something spectacular. But there were few of my Halloween memories that got jogged my memory. This year’s Halloween varied somewhat of Halloween’s past.
The cast for this year’s Halloween reflected some world and national situations that should be classified under the heading of a “National Halloween” and something that took away some of the luster of a genuine local Halloween and the antics of spooks and goblins. The Halloween of 2017 maybe should have been tabbed more of a “National – International Disaster” rather than fun-filled Halloween of our nation.

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