May 2020 | Vol. 20 Iss. 05
MURRAY CITY REVENUE DROPS, BUDGET TIGHTENED By Shaun Delliskave | firstname.lastname@example.org
hat started as a rosy calendar year for Murray City turned increasingly stark as forecasted revenues dropped nearly 10% due to the coronavirus pandemic. Revenue was down $4.5 million as sales tax revenues fell 15%. However, the city’s general fund maintained a positive balance of over $5 million. Mayor Blair Camp presented his fiscal budget address at the April 21 city council meeting. He noted the severity of change between his State of the City Address just three months earlier. “These are unprecedented times,” Camp said. “The fact that I am presenting this budget address to you this evening in an electronic meeting illustrates and emphasizes that reality. Budget projections for this budget have been extremely challenging.” Murray will not need to furlough employees, but they should not expect any cost of living increase this coming fiscal year. Personnel costs account for 71% of the city’s general fund expenses. The city plans to spend approximately $311,000 in general funds and $127,000 in enterprise funds (i.e., funds from Murray City Power) to support employee salary step increases. “I believe it is important to maintain this step plan as there was so much time and effort invested in its implementation, and it impacts mainly the lower-paid employees of our city,” Camp said. Two full-time positions have been eliminated: a develContinued page 18
Murray will be able to complete the construction of new Murray Park pavilions this coming fiscal year. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)
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Murray-born illustrator pays homage to the pandemic way of life By Shaun Delliskave | email@example.com
Illustrator Susan Fitch. (Photo courtesy Susan Fitch)
or years, Murray-born-and-raised illustrator Susan Meeks Fitch has drawn children’s book characters set in colorful and sometimes playful scenes. But one day during the coronavirus lockdown, she felt compelled to draw something different, something more present. “The whole thing concerns me. I guess maybe I’m afraid that we won’t take it seriously enough,” said Fitch. “We are hearing all these things in the news about people suffering and dying, but here at home, tucked away safely in my little house in Kaysville with my family, it doesn’t seem real.” Fitch has illustrated the “What If” book series (www.whatifbookseries.com) written by her friend Tim Brown. She has also created Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints-themed art for a variety of outlets. She is presently illustrating a book based on a poem written by her third great-grandfather about the story of Saint Patrick.
“I studied illustration at Salt Lake Community College and Utah State University. I haven’t ever truly pursued working professionally as an artist because I’m busy being a mom right now,” the Murray High grad said. “I have a child with special needs, which makes it hard to commit to things outside the home. I end up doing most of my drawing while sitting on the couch in front of the TV after the kids have gone to bed.” After college, Fitch made connections with various authors through friends and family. When she isn’t engaged in a book project, she posts her creativity on social media. She sells many of her drawings through her Etsy shop. However, after seeing her son’s workplace during the coronavirus quarantine, she changed her artistic direction. “My son works as a bagger at a grocery store. He wears gloves and a mask—mostly because I make him. I’m alarmed at how many people, workers and the general public alike, don’t seem to take any precautions at all,” Fitch said. Fitch dropped everything else and started sketching the first in a new gallery: life in social distancing. “We are all in quarantine, but I haven’t seen any actual evidence of the virus around me, so I think it would be easy, especially now that we’re all getting tired of being at home, to get a false sense of security. That could be really dangerous. I think it’s probably harder to do the right thing and follow the safety guidelines without seeing it around us rather than if we were in the thick of it,” Fitch said. “I don’t want our complacency to allow us to make poor choices and create more of a problem here. We might not have a problem in our neighborhood, but we aren’t immune to it, and prevention is the way we have to stay safe. I don’t think it makes you paranoid or an alarmist if you want to be careful.”
While Fitch looks forward to depicting less stressful times in her artwork, her perspective still is to convey the message that small actions matter to get the pandemic behind us. “I’m not sure what made me start posting them on social media. I think maybe I did that just because that’s the only way we can connect with others right now. I had no idea they would mean anything to anybody,” Fitch said. One group of illustrations focuses on wearing a mask, while another group show parents who are frazzled with task of distance learning. She has been encouraged to collect these drawings in a book. According to Fitch, “If my little drawings can help another person in any small way—well, isn’t that what it’s all about— helping each other? We’re all in this together, so we all do what we can. I just feel blessed that something I love doing so much can help others. It feels good to be able to do that. “I’m glad that others are enjoying them. I keep getting messages from my family and Illustrator Susan Fitch depicts the perils of distance learning during the quarantine. (Illustration courtesy friends saying how much they enjoy seeing of Susan Fitch) them every day and what a light they have been. It makes my day to hear that.” Susan Fitch’s drawings can be found online at www.Etsy.com/shop/SusanFitchDesign. l
Susan Fitch’s illustration pays tribute to all medical professionals engaged in the fight against COVID-19. (Illustration courtesy of Susan Fitch)
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State and city emergency managers cite key lessons from March earthquake By Joshua Wood | email@example.com
he Great Utah Shakeout came a month early this year with the real deal. The 5.7 magnitude earthquake that shook the Salt Lake Valley on March 18, and the many aftershocks in the weeks that followed, made all those past community earthquake drills startlingly relevant. The good news was that the March 18 quake was not “the big one” that Utahns have been taught to expect. On the other hand, officials learned that many residents still needed a lot more practice in preparedness. “It’s given us an opportunity to practice our emergency management process,” said Wade Mathews, Be Ready Utah manager with the Utah Division of Emergency Management. “We were already active for COVID-19, and it’s given us an opportunity. People didn’t quite remember what to do. We want to emphasize the importance of stay where you are, stop, drop and hold on.” Mathews cited the quake as a great learning opportunity for everyone. In the event of a much larger earthquake, the shaking would likely be too violent for people to run for cover. Even in large aftershocks, the best thing for people to do in the moment is to stay where they are, drop down, and hold on for cover. If an earthquake were to strike when people are in bed, for example,
Gov. Gary Herbert and Department of Public Safety Commissioner Jess Anderson in the State Emergency Operations Center on March 18 during the first ever level 1 activation for the 5.7 magnitude earthquake in Magna. (Photo courtesy of Wade Mathews, Utah Division of Emergency Management)
Mathews said the best thing for them to do is to stay in bed and put a pillow over their heads for protective cover. The March earthquake provided real experience for local emergency personnel to put all their drills into practice. Cottonwood Heights canceled its annual Shakeout event due to social distancing measures for the COVID-19 pandemic, but officials tentatively plan to hold a drill this fall. Lessons learned from the recent earthquake will help inform their planning. “The biggest thing that we’ve seen is
that it has brought the realization that it could happen,” said Assistant Emergency Manager Julie Sutch of the Cottonwood Heights Police Department. “That’s probably the biggest takeaway. We’re seeing more people being geared toward preparedness.” Preparedness is the primary concern for Mathews. From the state level to community organizations to each household, knowing what to do is the top priority. “We’re going to emphasize protective action more with our outreach,” Mathews said. “If we don’t know how to survive the disaster, the rest of our
plans don’t matter. We want everyone to be able to survive. That’s why we emphasize protective action so much.” Protective action during an earthquake includes: • Drop to your hands and knees to protect yourself from being knocked down • Cover your head and neck with one arm • Crawl under a sturdy desk or table if one is nearby • If no table or desk is nearby, crawl to an interior wall • Stay on your hands and knees, bent over to protect vital organs • If you get under a desk or table for shelter, hold on to a leg until the shaking stops • If not under shelter, cover your head and neck with both arms For more tips on earthquake preparedness, visit shakeout.org/Utah. The lessons of the recent earthquake, coupled with the COVID-19 pandemic, have provided real reminders of the importance of emergency preparedness. “We want to create a culture of preparedness where we live,” Mathews said. “Knowing the risks of where we live helps us have emergency preparedness plans in place.” l
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May 2020 | Page 5
Murray District names Pinnacles winners – gala on hold By Julie Slama | firstname.lastname@example.org
t was going to be an incredible night. Parent volunteer Monica Giles was to be honored with Murray School District’s Pinnacles Award as her son would be one of the students performing opening night on stage at Riverview Junior High in “Into the Woods, Jr.,” which she was producing. However, hours before the big night, Murray School District shut its doors—a day before other districts and schools statewide did—in prevention of the coronavirus spread. Before the announcement, Giles said she was in “shock” that she was being honored. “I just never once thought of it,” she said about receiving the award. “It’s what you do—you help, you volunteer. When I see a need, I just want to help.” And that’s just what she has been doing—serving on PTA boards at three different schools: vice president of legislature at Horizon Elementary, treasurer at Murray High and Reflections chair and musical producer at Riverview Junior High. She recently stepped down as co-PTA president and overseeing Horizon’s fun run for the past eight years. Giles was just one of eight people who were to have been honored in March as the 17th annual Pinnacle Awards gala. Other honorees include: Riverview Junior Hugh math teacher Randy Bodily, who has worked for the district 43 years; Longview Elementary special education teacher Sheri Heaton, who has worked for the district 28 years; Murray High art teacher Ryan Moffett, who has worked for the district 23 years; Grant Elementary fourth-grade teacher Ginger Shaw, who has worked for the district 33 years; Murray High athletic director and physical education teacher Lisa White, who has worked for the district 25 years; McMillan Elementary second-grade teacher Sheri Winn, who has worked for the district 24 years; and district technology specialist Brady Nielsen, who has worked for the district 12 years. “The individuals recognized as Pinnacle receipts this year come from all different backgrounds and represent various roles in the education profession,” Superintendent
Jennifer Covington said. “They are role models who show our students how to work hard to reach their potential. They walk into our schools each day because they love what they do and are eager to help our students recognize the best versions of themselves. Their work is critical to the success of our district and most importantly critical to the success of our students. We appreciate the opportunities each of these individuals provides to help our students learn and grow. They are a vital part of our ‘We Are Murray’ spirit.” Just being honored is something that Grant Elementary fourth-grade teacher Shaw appreciated. “I was sitting down by the projector teaching math, and all these ‘tall’ people started coming in,” she said. “I’m used to students, so I was caught off guard. I just was staring at them. It was just fun to be recognized.” Along with a bouquet of flowers, recipients are expected to receive a statute and $500 as well as a basket full of items from the local community. They also were expected to be honored at a March 12 dinner at Murray High, where each recipient would be introduced with remarks from a student. Shaw had chosen a student from a couple years ago, but she had many she could have selected from not only those who have been in her classroom over the past three decades, but also those from the 25 years she has led the after-school tutoring program. Shaw also organized and continues to oversee the student school recycling program, teaches students how to play chess and created a chess tournament, and established pen pals with at first, Long Island students, and currently, peers in Oklahoma. In her classroom, she greets students daily in different languages, but then she teaches them vocabulary in French year-round in preparation for the pretend class trip to Paris day at the end of the school year that includes boarding a plane made of desks, having passports and luggage claim tickets they read, tasting French cuisine, drawing the Eiffel Tower to scale, and singing songs in French.
One of this year’s Pinnacle award winners, Ginger Shaw, got help during her class’ annual Paris day in 2010 from then fourth-grade students Annikka Jaramillo and Stewart McKenna. (Julie Slama/City Journals)
“During the year, we learn different words in several languages—French, Farsi, German, Spanish, Somali, Portuguese, Mongolian—so they have a connection and can take the time to greet someone in their native language,” Shaw said. “We learn more French as it is one that is taught in secondary schools and this opens a door which may allow some to explore the language and culture more. It’s considered a free day, but instead of just turning on a movie, we’re still exploring and engaging in learning. We learn about geography with map assignments, art and math with drawing the Eiffel Tower, science as we learn about snail habitats before tasting escargot, history, languages and so many ways, it ties into curriculum.”
Another perk to being in Shaw’s class is that students learn through song to know the difference between adjectives and adverbs, understanding different kinds of clouds or learning how many pounds are in one ton. Shaw sets lines about those and other subjects her students are expected to learn to familiar melodies, such as “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” or “Camptown Races.” Her “Utah County Song” was even recorded and sent to the Utah State Board of Education to share on a blog three years ago. So, when Superintendent Covington sang, “‘Congratulations to Ginger, you’re a winner of the Pinnacles,’ it was just perfect since she knows I incorporate songs into my teaching,” Shaw said. “This is such a joy.” l
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Murrayites still find community during social distancing through one man’s Facebook page By Shaun Delliskave | email@example.com
CENSUS 2020 BEGINS ONLINE MARCH 12, 2020 The U.S. Census helps fund our schools, health care, roads, and other important parts of our community. It’s quick, easy to fill out and confidential.
John Park created the Murray Citizens Facebook group. (Photo courtesy John Park)
n the age of digital communication, compounded by coronavirus social distancing, one man’s Facebook page has become the unofficial town square of Murray. John Park’s “Murray Citizens” Facebook page has been the go-to place for Murrayites to notify residents of everything from new arrivals of toilet paper to concerns about crime. With an overwhelming number of social media sites and the fickle popularity of the latest community apps, Murray Citizens Facebook page continues to attract new members. Park, who founded the page in 2015, has moderated this page voluntarily. “I moved back to Murray in 2015 after growing up here. The last city I lived in was Syracuse, and we had a similar group that was there. I wanted to do the same thing for Murray since it was a nice way to connect to the community,” Park said. “The problem I saw with that group was there was just so much junk that people put in there that deterred people from participating. So, I sought to make something a little more moderated.” Park is not a web designer or marketer, but he is communications center director for Classic Air Medical. The page has been able to do what a lot of other Murray Facebook pages have not, and that is to attract followers. “I remember right after making the group and handing out postcards that it didn’t get going. “I was super bummed out because I didn’t know how to build the momentum.
It seemed like little by little people would trickle in, and I would make a request asking people to invite their neighbors. We had a few hundred people, and then it seemed like it really took off when the Murray Journal did their ‘Park Madness’ poll, where people had to vote for the best park. I got really into that and kept sharing and asking people to vote and invite people, and the group really started moving in the summer of 2018. “After that, the growth was pretty consistent, with about 30 to 50 people per week until COVID hit. Right around the beginning of March, we started seeing around 100 people a week joining, which has been crazy.” Park estimated that he spent, on average, an hour a day managing the site with no pay, and until recently no assistance. Early on, he spent his time finding articles about Murray, but now it’s more about vetting new members, moderating content to make sure that posts are within the rules, and chatting with the moderators about how to handle different posts. Since the COVID crisis, the page has increased membership from 2,910 on March 1 to 3,530 on April 1. Even though unpaid, Park has found satisfaction with managing the page. “The moment that means the very most to me was the community response to that poor family, where Cassidy Jackson and Lisa Wiley were killed. People were posting photos of the neighborhood lined in ribbons, and
tons of active fundraisers, and outreach to the elementary nearby and more. “Having been a first responder and having my friends still in various fire departments around the county, I knew that the crews that responded were taking it hard. So, I hoped to do a little fundraiser to raise $100 to buy them dinner. Well, the community had a huge outpouring of love, and we raised $500. So, we were able to buy dinner for every crew who responded, including the non-Murray fire crews. When I went to the fire station to hand it off, I happened to be there at the time they were doing their debriefing, and it was very emotional. “For them to see the community lifting them up was so inspiring. That was hands down my favorite time with this page.” Park is now stepping down from the group he founded and turning it over to a team to manage. After moderating several debates in the group, one member decided to make it personal with Park and threatened him. Even though Park created the page and the rules that the members must abide by to post, a member harassed Park after he took the post down by anonymously sending emails to his work. In his last post as administrator of the page, Park posted, “Thanks every one of you who have been a contributor to the community. You guys have made the last years exciting to see this place slowly bloom into the awesome hub it is today.” l
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May 2020 | Page 7
Amid COVID-19 pandemic, Murray plans next steps
M To the families we serve, The Larkin Mortuaries and Cemeteries are proud and honored to be assisting families and friends with their loss for the past 135 years. Given the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for you to know that we as funeral directors are taking precautions to limit exposure to the coronavirus. As we have always done, we are still operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week making certain that those entrusted to our care and the families we serve are receiving uninterrupted service and attention. In the last days and weeks, the Larkin management have been in regular contact with numerous state and federal agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control, National Funeral Directors Association and the Salt Lake County Health Department. Our continuing goal is ensuring the health and safety of the public and that the information we receive is as current and accurate as possible. These are just some of the changes we are implementing: • We are sanitizing our facilities several times daily • We are asking staff to stay home when possible • We are encouraging arrangements by phone and email • We are limiting the gathering size of our arrangement conferences, services and gravesides to meet the state and federal mandates That said, people will still be passing away and families will want to say goodbye. We still have a myriad of options. Your funeral director will explain ways that you can memorialize your loved one in a meaningful way.
By Shaun Delliskave | firstname.lastname@example.org
urray community leaders continue to make adjustments to city services and the economy as the coronavirus pandemic remains. At the March 17 city council meeting, the council approved a second Emergency Declaration; the first one expired on April 12, 2020. The second resolution will allow the local emergency to continue for longer than 30 days and enable remote city council meetings to be held. Joey Mittelman, fire marshal for Murray City and member of the Utah Emergency Operation Center, has been coordinating the city’s response. The fire department participates in a group phone call every day at 9 a.m. where they get updates. They also receive a report with constant updates on where the virus is spreading and the other impacts it’s having. Because Intermountain Medical Center (IMC) calls Murray home, the hospital and Murray’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) have collaborated in the city’s response. According to Mittelman, “Murray has a blended response with our District 2b Protocols (Salt Lake County’s EMS policy) across the Valley. Every Salt Lake Valley EMS agency has blended their protocols to be consistent with all the hospitals. IMC is part of our protocol development and assists with how we respond. Medical Director Adam Balls also serves as the department chair for IMC’s Emergency Department; he has
played a large part in assisting Murray and IMC to blend their response.” Responding to emergency calls, where exposure to the virus is always a possibility, has been challenging for Murray’s EMS and fire departments. As of mid-April, none of Murray’s first responders have had to quarantine. “EMS and fire calls don’t always offer the most protected situations. We operate as a family at the firehouse, so it’s difficult to not possibly expose an entire crew once a single crew member has been exposed. Firefighters eat, sleep, clean and much more in a similar atmosphere as your house,” Mittelman said. Mayor Blair Camp stated in the April 7 city council meeting that Murray Police Chief Craig Burnett has resorted to holding some staff meetings outside in the parking lot to comply with social distancing efforts. To date, Murray Parks and Recreation has canceled most recreation programs indefinitely and also, notably, the June Arts in the Park production scheduled for the Murray Park Amphitheatre. Salt Lake County parks, including Wheeler Farm, are also shut down. Parks department crews have also posted off limits notices at all playgrounds and pavilions, and they’ve locked restroom facilities—although the county and city parks themselves are open for visitation. Golfers, on the other hand, were in luck as both the city’s Murray Parkway Golf
If you are experiencing a cough, fever, or shortness of breath, we encourage you to not attend funeral services. Reach out to the Larkin location handling services and we will be willing to share your sympathies with the family of the deceased and they may also offer some other options to let the bereaved know that you support and care for them during this difficult time. Notes of sympathy may also be left on our website for the family to see. Every obituary on our website allows for online condolences. Sincerely, The Staff of Larkin Mortuaries and Cemeteries
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Riverview Park’s playground was posted off limits due to the coronavirus. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)
Murray City Journal
How to Sell High: Avoid These Top 3 Mistakes When Selling Your Home
Murray - When you decide to sell your home, setting the asking price is THE most important decision. Price is the first thing a buyer sees before even deciding to look at your house. Your asking price is often your home’s “first impression”, and if you want to get the most Money, you must make a good first impression. This is not as easy as it sounds. Pricing too high can be just as costly to a home seller as pricing too low. Looking at what homes in your neighborhood sold for, is only one part of the process, but not enough to help you make this critical decision. 10 years
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Murray Police Chief Craig Burnett (far left) and his officers conduct a staff meeting and display donated masks in the City Hall parking lot. (Photo courtesy Murray City)
Course and county’s Mick Riley Golf Course were open by reservation only. The Murray Senior Recreation Center serves sack lunches Tuesday through Friday for Murray-area seniors. The center has provided a phone number for patrons to call, order, and pay for their lunch a day prior, and a sack lunch is delivered to the patron’s car in front of the building. Instead of lunches, the Murray Library delivered book check-outs to patron’s cars in front of its building. Demand for books has been high, as Murray and Granite School
District children are confined to distance learning. Library staff have also posted online readings of younger children’s books for its patrons. The economic fallout from the virus has impacted many Murray families; some have lost their jobs since many businesses are closed during the pandemic. An emergency pantry was created in the former Kids Eat Pantry space near City Hall. On April 19, the Murray Children’s Pantry reported that it was running out of food and put out a request for donations of food, toilet paper, face masks, and money to meet the need. Churches throughout Murray have responded to community needs, even though they remain unable to hold services: Murray Baptist Church held a food drive, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints churches have sponsored blood drives, and the Church of Scientology has helped sanitize public safety vehicles. Local businesses have donated face masks, protective equipment and hand sanitizer to Murray’s police and fire departments. The Murray Area Chamber of Commerce announced that it was creating an economic task force with Murray City. The task force will look for ways to develop resources, come up with policies to confront the economic damage, and find ways to assist those Who is that masked man? Murray Police Chief Craig Burnett models a face mask recently donated to the facing the effects of social isolation, quarantine and shelter-in-place orders. l police department. (Photo courtesy Murray City)
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May 2020 FREQUENTLY REQUESTED NUMBERS Grant Elementary . . . . . . 801-264-7416 Heritage Center (Senior Programming) . . 801-264-2635 Hillcrest Jr. High . . . . . . . 801-264-7442 Horizon Elementary . . . . 801-264-7420 Liberty Elementary . . . . . 801-264-7424 Longview Elementary. . . 801-264-7428 Ken Price Ball Park . . . . . 801-262-8282 Miss Murray Pageant (Leesa Lloyd) . . . . . . . . . . 801-446-9233 McMillan Elementary . . 801-264-7430 Murray Area Chamber of Commerce.. . . . . . . . . . 801-263-2632 Murray Arts Advisory Board (Lori Edmunds) . . . . . . . . 801-264-2614 Murray Boys & Girls Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . 801-268-1335 Murray City Cemetery . . . 801-264-2637 Murray Community Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . 801-264-7414 Murray High School . . . . 801-264-7460 Murray Museum . . . . . . . 801-264-2589 Murray Parks and Recreation Office . . . . . . . 801-264-2614 Murray Parkway Golf Course . . . . . . . . . . . . 801-262-4653 Murray Park Aquatics Pool . . . . . . . . . .801 290-4190 Mick Riley Golf Course (SL County) . . . . . . . . . . . 801-266-8185 Parkside Elementary . . . . 801-264-7434 Riverview Jr. High . . . . . . 801-264-7446 Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation . . . . . . . . 801-468-2560 Salt Lake County Ice Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . 801-270-7280 The Park Center . . . . . . . . 801-284-4200 Viewmont Elementary . . 801-264-7438
Mayor’s Message How Quickly the State of Things Can Change Less than three months ago I presented my third State of the City address, reporting a strong economic condition for the city, boasting of our ever-popular recreation facilities and programs, lauding our cultural arts programming, and anticipating the realization of some much needed capital improvement projects. Then suddenly and almost without warning, came the new coronavirus. COVID-19, the disease we had heard about in faraway Asia, was here in our community, changing our lives almost immediately. The magnitude of the impact of the virus hit home to me on March 12 when I was informed that the Murray School District would be closing their schools “out of an abundance of caution” due to a possible exposure. The next day Governor Herbert ordered all schools closed, and Salt Lake County announced the closure of many of their facilities. That same day, March 13, I declared a local state of emergency for Murray City and closed the senior center, recreation center, library, and museum, and postponed all recreation and cultural art programs. On March 16 the Salt Lake County Health Department declared a public health emergency. On Sunday, March 29, Salt Lake County issued their public health order “Salt Lake County: Stay Safe. Stay Home.” This was a mandatory order emphasizing the importance of staying home, closing certain non-essential businesses, and requiring more stringent social distancing recommendations. This order originally was in effect until April 13 but was extended to May 1. By the time you read this message, you will know whether the order has once again been extended or if it has been relaxed. This health order caused us as a city to close most of our buildings to the public beginning April 1. This included city hall. At the time of this writing, I am planning to have the city build-
ings closed until May 1 to coincide with the County health order. Once again, you will know by the time you read this if we were able to open back up to the public. The impact of COVID-19 has MAYOR’S OFFICE been devastating to our business community. Our vibrant and dyD. Blair Camp namic Fashion Place Mall is comMayor pletely closed except for take-out email@example.com orders from some of the restaurants, car dealerships that were 801-264-2600 thriving only a couple of months 5025 S. State Street ago resemble a ghost town, and Murray, Utah 84107 all businesses where people recently gathered to socialize are now shut down. Our many small businesses are struggling. Sales tax revenues, which account for more than 50% of the city’s general fund, are being impacted dramatically. The state of the city has changed signiﬁcantly in a few short months. But here’s what hasn’t changed. We will continue to make public safety a top priority by providing outstanding police, ﬁre, and emergency medical services, as well as other critical public services. We will continue to seek out ways to continuously improve and become more efﬁcient. As we move past this devastating pandemic, our strong spirit of community will help us rebound to a place better than we were before. I ended my state of the city address with this paragraph, and I believe it is even more meaningful in our current situation. “I am optimistic about the future of Murray City. Murray will continue to be a great place to live and work, and we will continue to provide the services that make Murray the envy of other municipalities. I look forward to the future and I hope you do too.”
Murray Senior Recreation Center Currently the Murray Senior Recreation Center is closed and most programs are cancelled until further notice. The Center is serving a sack lunch meal for pickup Tuesday through Friday, 11:30 – 12:30. The meal cost is $4 and you must phone in your order 24 hours in advance (801-264-2635). Initial registration is being taken for the Senior Golf League. The cost of the league is $10 and the ﬁrst tournaments will begin in June. Further information is yet to come regarding tournament dates. Registration is also being accepted for the Walking Club. The goal is to walk to Portland, Oregon (775 mile) by the end of October. Cost is $12 and includes a monthly calendar to record steps/miles, a pedometer and a club t-shirt. Walking is a great activity to do while we are staying at home. The trip to Tuachan/Mesquite has been moved to September 28October 1. Registrations for the trip will begin July 15.
Recreation Programs and The Park Center UPDATE Currently the Murray Parks and Recreation is closed and most programs are cancelled until further notice. We are taking registrations for Fall programs online at www.mcreg.com. We hope to resume programs and activities once the Public Health Order is lifted. The Park Center is also currently closed until further notice.
Please stay healthy and safe.
C ULTURAL A RTS
Resident on Display Original artwork by Murray resident artists are displayed in the central display case at City Hall and Murray Library. John Tavoian’s artwork (see below) will remain at City Hall until the end of May. Neecholl Vass’s photography will be showcased during the months May – July.
MAY 2020 Great Utah Shake Out Murray City employees participated in the Great Utah Shake Out on April 16. While we experienced the “real thing” at 7:42 a.m., we also took the opportunity to practice again later that morning. Here is a reminder of what to do during an earthquake: DROP where you are, onto your hands and knees. 1. This position protects you from being knocked down and allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby. COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand. • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall (away from windows) • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs HOLD ON until the shaking stops. 1. Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts. 2. No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands. If there is no table or desk near you, drop to the ground and then, if possible, move to an inside corner of the room. Be in a crawling position to protect your vital organs and be ready to move if necessary. Cover your head and neck with your hands and arms. Do not move to another location or outside. Earthquakes occur without any warning and may be so violent that you cannot run or crawl. You are more likely to be injured if you try to move around during strong shaking. Also, you will never know if the initial jolt will turn out to be start of the big one…and that’s why you should always Drop, Cover, and Hold On immediately! For more preparedness tips please visit: www.shakeout.org/utah. Looking for more information about earthquakes in Utah? Visit www.earthquakes.utah.gov.
PUBLIC WORKS PROJECT UPDATE Murray City crews and contractors have begun roadway reconstruction efforts. A mill and overlay on 5600 South from State Street to 900 East is underway and mill and overlay projects on 4800 South from the Jordan River to the Union Paciﬁc tracks, 300 West from 6500 South to Midvale, Woodoak Lane from Vine Street to Executive Park Drive, and Lucky Clover Lane will follow. Full roadway reconstructions will occur on La Salle Drive, 600 West, and Jamaica Street, all south of 5987 South. 150 West off 5750 South will also have a full reconstruct which should begin within the next few weeks. Roadway reconstruction will occur on 6410 South, Joma Street, and Westridge Street once the water lines have been replaced. Non-paving maintenance projects will take place throughout the spring and summer. These include the bridge rehabilitation on Cottonwood Street over 5300 South, and 700 West over I-215 as well as sidewalk repairs in the Lucky Clover neighborhood. WASTEWATER PROJECTS We will be replacing about 600 feet of sewer line on Betty Gene and Spurrier Drive along with several manholes. This project will take approximately 30 days to complete and is scheduled to begin in July. WATER PROJECTS Water lines are being replaced on both sides of State Street from about 4300 South to 5300 South. The existing lines are over 70 years old and are beginning to fail. The project will be ongoing throughout the summer of 2020. Thank you for your patience as we work to complete these projects.
Murray City Fire Department to Participate in National Emergency Medical Services Week May 17-23, 2020 has been designated as National Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Week. EMS Week will be recognized with a proclamation at the Murray City Council meeting on May 19, 2020 at 6:30 p.m. National EMS week honors the lifesaving care EMS providers offer nationwide, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This year’s theme – “Ready Today. Preparing For Tomorrow”. To recognize EMS week, on Wednesday June 17, 2020, the Fire Department will join forces with Murray City Police and Murray Senior Recreation Center for “A Father’s Day Kickoff to Summer” event. The public is invited to stop by and meet the proud members of the ﬁre, police and senior recreation center and enjoy the activities! The members of the Murray City Fire Department are proud and excited to continue to provide the highest level of service, and continue to build on life saving programs including 12 lead data ﬁeld interpretation for heart attack victims, the latest resuscitation techniques for victims in full arrest, and management of difﬁcult airways. Those persons needing the Murray City Fire Department’s medical service experience the highest level of rapid response with emergency care and transportation. EMS Week is an opportunity for the public to learn about injury prevention, safety awareness, and emergency preparedness. The EMS professionals of the Murray City Fire Department, with the support of the Murray City Council and Mayor Camp, stand ready to meet your emergency medical needs. “Ready Today. Preparing For Tomorrow”.
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Murray schools, districts ensure students have meals during closure
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n the parking lot of Utah Virtual Academy, cases of peanut butter, ramen, macaroni and cheese, oatmeal and other canned and boxed food were being distributed to 57 families in the school community — at a safe distance. Grandmother Vikki Scarbrough, who has a third-grade grandson “who loves UTVA,” had pulled up to the online charter school’s drive-through food pantry March 26. “I work as an Uber and Lyft driver and there are no people out so it means I’m not giving anyone rides and I’m not getting paid,” she said. “We’re appreciating the help with food now.” UTVA Director Meghan Merideth said that they have found an overwhelming response to the pantry since they first provided their families food during Thanksgiving 2018. While the pantry usually is staffed by parent volunteers, on the drive-through distribution, it was Merideth and her children; volunteer Zane Shillington, who, with his wife Vicki stock the pantry; and other administrators, who filled car trunks with donations they received from the community as well as the Utah Food Bank. “We usually have monthly pick-ups in our office, but as our families have tripled during this time, and with social distancing, this made sense with how the world is now,” Merideth said. “We looked at our students, parents, and teachers to see how we could help. With whatever situations are going on, and with some empty shelves in grocery stores, this is a way we can continue to serve and help.” Parent Jacob Wooldridge, who had his security job hours reduced after sites closed, is grateful for the help for his family, which included a junior high student at the school. “A lot of can goods we can’t find in local grocery stores,” he said. “This should help us get by for several days.” Those are people the school wants to help, in addition to the regular monthly families, said Student Services Administrator LuAnn Charles. “We have families who have lost their jobs or are on pause because of the coronavirus pandemic or are struggling for whatever reason and situation, and we are here to help,” she said. “We are all in need of help at some time.” The pantry has helped up to 150 families from the start of the school year until March 26. “So many of the families are grateful, thankful they can have the basics so the family can see to other things and for students, to focus on academics,” she said. In Granite School District, spokesman Ben Horsley also recognized the need to help students.
Utah Virtual Academy Student Services Administrator LuAnn Charles helps to load food to a school family at the online charter school’s drive-through food pantry during the coronavirus pandemic. (Julie Slama/ City Journals)
“One of our biggest concerns with the home dismissal is food insecurity for many of our students,” he said. “We will continue to offer breakfast and lunch and grab and go format through the dismissal.” He acknowledged Utah Jazz shooting guard Donovan Mitchell, who while quarantined with the coronavirus, contributed funds to the school district, which serves almost 68,000 students in 88 schools, to ensure that any child under the age of 19 can show up to a designated site to get a meal at no charge. “Donovan Mitchell from the Utah Jazz has graciously donated funds to cover families that were not eligible for a grab-and-go lunch so any student who needs food can receive it at this time,” he said. Lunches will be distributed between 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and breakfasts, 8 to 9 a.m. Locations can be found: online. Murray School District also serves graband-go meals for its students, about 750 per day. The student lunch program runs weekdays from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at all schools as well as the Fireclay and Frontgate neighborhoods. Breakfast for the following day is given during the lunchtime. During Murray District’s spring break, the Boys & Girls club provided meals at the Murray location, along with Buffalo Wild Wings in Sugar House giving students meals one day. Several of the schools also have partnered with KidsEat to help students get food for the weekend, Murray District spokesman Doug Perry said. For more community food resources, Granite has compiled links on the page: www.graniteschools.org/blog/2020/03/18/ community-food-resources/ l
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Continued from front page opment services manager in the Community and Economic Development (CED) Department and an office administrator in the DEA Metro Task Force. Another office administrator position in the CED Department, which is currently vacant due to a recent retirement, is on hold. Two new general fund positions requested by Public Works, a street maintenance worker and a civil engineer, will not be filled. The city whittled down capital improvement projects (CIP). Initially, the city was planning to spend $8 million on new construction, but after revenues dived, the mayor asked department directors to cut projects, of which $2.9 million were approved. “Following the COVID-19 outbreak, I instructed our department directors to reevaluate their requests and submit only for
critical needs that cannot be postponed for whatever reason,” Camp said. “The CIP committee met on April 9 and were presented an itemized list of capital projects that, in the opinion of the department directors, can be postponed for the coming year.” The most expensive item green-lighted on the CIP list is additional funding to remodel the Murray Theater, coming in at $500,000. Salt Lake County has partnered with Murray to renovate the historic theater, which the city hopes to open in 2022. The outdoor swimming pool parking lot replacement comes in at a budgeted $300,000. The final Murray Park pavilion replacement will be completed with prior year funds. The city also budgeted $150,000 in building upgrades, including repairs to a pumphouse damaged by March’s 5.7 earthquake. Major road projects that the city plans
Murray’s outdoor pool will open with upgraded facilities and shade structures. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)
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Murray will not replace the aging pedestrian bridge by Murray High, which was torn down in April. (Shaun Delliskave/City Journals)
to begin this year include the Hanauer Road extension from 4800 South through the Murray City Center District to Vine Street. Other big road projects include a rebuild of Vinecrest Road and Cedar Streets and an overlay of 700 West. Most city departments remain budgetarily sound, except for the Murray Parkway Golf Course. Following national trends, the golf course has been losing money for the past several years, including a loss of $257,015 this current fiscal year. According to Camp, “What makes this budget so challenging is the fact that the length and extent of economic recovery are unknown at this point. In past years, our pro-
posed budget was based on clear historical data and forecasted based on predictable trends. This year has caused us to react to unpredictable conditions late in our budget development.” Murray City provides support to several independent groups by waiving fees, donating services or direct funding. The most substantial support goes to the Boys & Girls Club, valued at $100,000 (use of a city building), followed by the Light Up Navajo Project at $30,000 (donated labor) and the Murray Area Chamber of Commerce, valued at $22,700. The entire mayor’s tentative budget can be found online at www.murray.utah. gov/148/Annual-Budget. l
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Two of Murray High’s 2019-2020 MVPs By Ryanne Riet | email@example.com
hen the 2019-2020 school year abruptly ended in March due to COVID-19 concerns, some of the Murray High athletes were forced to end their seasons a bit short. There was a bright side this year for athletes like Owen Madsen and Kylie Rosengreen, who had some notable MVP achievements in their season and preseasons. In the 2019-2020 football season, Madsen was awarded All-State at safety playing
for Murray High’s football team. He is also a two-year captain and two-year all-region wide receiver. This year, he was able play alongside his team in a memorable game against Skyline. Murray claimed victory on their homefield during a playoff game for the first time since 1995. “We had finally taken the lead with two minutes left, and we pinned them deep on the kickoff,” Madsen said. Madsen uses his experience from this season and continues to focus on working hard toward his goal of starting on a Division 1 football team. To ready himself to achieve his goal he will be playing at Minnesota State Technical and Community College this coming school year. “Advice I would give the future athletes of Murray is to set big goals,” Madsen said. “Once you have those goals, set mini goals that will help you achieve the bigger ones.” Another spotlight athlete who had success this year is Kylie Rosengreen, a sophomore who was chosen to be on the Varsity All-American team at cheer camp this past summer that helped her ready for the 20192020 school season. She was the only person from Utah Murray High’s Kylie Rosengreen in 2019. (Photo asked to join the Varsity All-American team courtesy Kylie Rosengreen) and flew to Italy in December to meet with
other All-Americans and perform in the New Year’s Day Rome parade. As a member of this year’s Murray High cheer competition team, Rosengreen traveled to California with the team to compete in nationals. “This was a big accomplishment for us,” Rosengreen said. “It was a fun experience and a great bonding moment with our competition team.” This was the first year that Rosengreen has participated in cheer at Murray High. She credits her skills to her dance experience. Rosengreen’s work with dance companies such as Ballet West and Odyssey Dance Theatre over the years have successfully pre-
pared her for her high school cheer competition career. Her future goals include cheering or dancing in college, where she hopes to attend a university like Utah State or Utah Valley University. “My advice to future athletes is to get involved in school activities,” Rosengreen said. “Work hard and stay positive through the ups and downs.” Though this year has definitely had its ups and downs, these athletes at Murray High School still demonstrated MVP accomplishments. l
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Murray High’s athletes of the past, where are they now? By Ryanne Riet | firstname.lastname@example.org
he Murray High athletics program has a reputation for sending its athletes into their futures well prepared and ready for success. As the years go by, and Murray High sends scores of their athletes out into the real world, it raises the question, “Where are they now?” The success stories of three—Brandon Kee, Nicole Brambila-Kizer and Britton Johnsen—would surely make their former Murray High coaches proud. Brandon Kee, a former Murray High hockey player, graduated in 2011. He has found himself on a successful career path as a designer, patternmaker, marketing expert, and accountant for his own clothing label. “I launched my label straight out of college in 2016,” Kee said. Brandon was also featured on Bravo’s “Project Runway” in 2017, where he went on to place third in the competition. The most beneficial factor to his career that came from playing for Murray High’s hockey program is understanding how to work together as part of a team. “It taught me work ethic like I haven’t experienced before,” Kee said. One of the most memorable accomplishments that Kee recalls is the response
Brandon Kee on Bravo’s “Project Runway” in 2017. (Photo courtesy Brandon Kee)
Brandon Kee, Murray High hockey, 2011. (Photo courtesy Brandon Kee)
that his team had to an accident that took the life of their assistant coach, Dave Brown. “I can recall as a team, coming together like a family after losing our assistant
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before.” Nicole Brambila-Kizer graduated from Murray High in 2016. During her time at Murray High she played basketball, volleyball and softball. Brambila-Kizer is now an Aviation Ordnanceman third class petty officer in the United States Navy. “I think playing softball for Murray helped teach me responsibility, teamwork and that hard work eventually pays off,” Continued page 19
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MISSION STATEMENT The Murray Chamber creates synergy among professionals. We facilitate the creation of long lasting business relationships between members that are based on trust, value, and cooperation. We provide tools to connect education, service opportunities and interaction between members.
The Murray Area Chamber of Commerce wishes you success and prosperity in your business for 2020. Call the Chamber today to schedule a complimentary business consultation with the Chamber President & CEO. Nicole Brambila-Kizer, Murray High softball, 2016. (Photo courtesy Nicole Brambila-Kizer)
Brambila-Kizer said. Today, she works on and around F-18 fighter jets, loading and installing ammunition for combat missions and training. Throughout her career, Brambila-Kizer has visited five countries and has completed a seven-month combat deployment. “I think the most beneficial thing that came from playing high school sports was the confidence and work ethic that it instilled in me,” Brambila-Kizer said. “It taught me how to be independent and work hard for the things I want.” Britton Johnsen played for Murray High’s basketball program and graduated in 1997. He went from Murray’s high school basketball program to the University of Utah, and then on to the NBA where he played for the Orlando Magic and the Indiana Pacers. Johnsen credits his coaches at Murray High for some of his career success, specifically mentioning coach Gordon Kener, coach Randy Bodily and coach Tom Stokes. “I couldn’t have asked for a better head coach than Gordon Kener,” Johnsen said. “He was awesome at knowing what I was good at and putting me in the best positions on the floor to be successful. Coach Stokes was our strength and defensive coach, he was incredible off the floor at getting my body as strong as it could be.”
The Murray Chamber wishes to thank all our wonderful hospital staff, nurses, doctors, frontline workers, Police, Fire and EMT workers for their dedication during this quarantine.
YOU ARE WONDERFUL and LOVED!
United States Navy Ordnanceman Nicole Brambila-Kizer. (Photo courtesy Nicole Brambila-Kizer)
“Randy Bodily was great at the psychology of basketball and teaching us how to use what we had,” Johnsen said. “He always made me feel like the most confident player.” Today Johnsen works for General Motors as their business development manager. He is on ESPN700 sports radio and has also done radio for the Utah Jazz for the past seven years. Murray High’s athletic programs have proven that what is taught to its athletes, will not only benefit their high school sports careers, but their future careers as well, with an emphasis on teamwork, hard work and ethics. l
CHAMBER MEMBER APPRECIATION We wish to thank the following Murray Chamber members for their continued support through 2020/2021. Please remember to utilize these members when you need a service or product. They appreciate the local support. Wasatch Front Floors – Kody Sorenson Hammers Recycling – Steve Hammer Easterseals / Goodwill – Philip Labrum Farmers Insurance – Dave Hansen Thorne & Associates – Pat Thorne Les Schwab Tires – Matt LaDuke Healing Hearts Spay & Neuter – Clyde Daines Gibson Pharmacy – Scott Robinson
Britton Johnsen and Murray High’s 1997 varsity basketball team yearbook photo. (Photo courtesy Alexis Hennekes Coplin)
Britton Johnsen, Orlando Magic. (Photo courtesy Britton Johnsen)
www.murraychamber.org May 2020 | Page 21
The Social Media Scandal - What I Learned During Quarantine
Hopefully by the time this reaches your mail we are beginning to dip our big toe back into life again. Like many others, being thrust into solitary confinement, left me with some spare time to spend on social media, and thanks to my friends I learned so much about how to handle this disaster. With the vast array of opinions, I found putting it all together difficult though, but I gave it shot anyway. It’s all as clear as mud now, here’s what I learned. Working from Home: If you are able to work from home you are lucky, unless you are required to work from home, then it’s horrible and you wished you could go to work, because working from home is too much work. Keeping a Healthy Diet: In effort not to get sick we should eat well, but we should not go out to get healthy fresh food when we run out and eat whatever pre-packaged food we have on hand instead. However, we should order out at our local restaurants to help keep them in business. Then it’s okay to go out to pick up the food. Your food might be prepared by someone sick that doesn’t know they are sick, but it’s okay if you pay by credit card and take the food out of the container. However, you should avoid going to the grocery store at all costs because you might get sick. Getting Sick: Wearing a mask is not helpful, but if you get sick you should wear a mask. But, don’t go to the hospital if you’re sick, because you might get sick if you do. You might be sick and not know you’re sick,
so you should wear a mask even while driving alone in the car alone. The Press: Every article starts with a panic headline designed to shock us. But when we read the article, we find it’s not so shocking after all and perhaps even a little boring, except when our friends post these articles to social media. Then we never read the article, we just start divisive arguments based on the shocking headline instead. Politics: We are all be untied as American’s; we are proud, and this is the time we shine. But, if there’s a government action that we don’t approve of, then we are not united if we disagree with our friend. We might even be called names, because name calling on social media is okay. Huh??? Love: We love our partners so much we could not live without them, they are our everything, unless we have to live with them non-stop. Then we feel we’d rather live without them. Home Schooling: Teachers are the saints and I can no longer remember why I even had kids. Grandparents: You can’t see your grandkids, but if you’re a grandparent and work in a grocery store or pharmacy, then you can see someone else’s grandkids. You can avoid getting the virus and still see your grandkids virtually by using a computer program called Zoom but, watch out, your computer might get a virus instead.
Earthquakes: In the event of an earthquake get outside, but otherwise don’t go outside it’s not safe. Also, keep in mind that on the annual practice day called ShakeOut, there might really be an earthquake, then it’s no longer a practice day and you can go outside. In all seriousness, I hope what every person takes away from this crisis, is to be prepared financially for an emergency. At Coupons4Utah.com we have spent the last 12 years helping families save a buck. Hopefully we will all remember to put that buck in the bank for next time. For those families living without a loved one because of this virus, my deepest sympathies to you and yours. Be safe out there.l
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Tomorrow is Another Day in Quarantine
As soon as COVID-19 hovered in the air we breathe, I went into full-on “Gone With the Wind” Scarlett O’Hara mode, ripping up bed sheets to make toilet paper and stockpiling moonshine for antiseptic. Of course, Scarlett was useless in an emergency. For the majority of the Civil War, she whined and married rich men. I’m also pretty useless in emergencies. When I knew the shelter-in-place edict was coming, I didn’t stockpile food, I scurried to the library to check out all the books. After hoarding four months of library books, I told everyone in the house (my husband, my daughter and her two children, ages 3 and 8) to check their 72-hour kits. They responded, “What 72-hour kits?” Not a good start. In the shed, I located an emergency essentials bag that looked like it had housed a family of weasels. Along with 10 years of dust, it contained an expired can of roasted almonds, a box of matches, a pair of underwear and a spatula. We were doomed. Tossing my hair like Scarlett, I tied on my shopping bonnet and sang out “fiddledee-dee” as I headed to the grocery store for provisions. By the time I got there, options were limited, unless I was keen on making a casserole with canned asparagus, creamed squid and buckwheat flour. I figured we’d just be creative with dinner. (Lesson learned: 3-year-old granddaughters don’t like creative dinners.) Our meals usually consist of some type of egg for breakfast, leftover Easter candy
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for lunch and something with hamburger or chicken for dinner. Could be spaghetti, could be soup. Hard to tell. This has been the worst staycation ever. I do not recommend. Both my husband and I can work from home, so we take turns sharing the home office space. One person works in the office with a comfy chair every other day, while the other person sits on a workout ball at a TV table in the bedroom. It’s . . . complicated. And we’re adjusting to each other’s work behaviors. Husband: Can you not leave dozens of half-empty water glasses by the computer? Me: You silly scalawag! Are they half-empty? Or half-full? Anyway, our attorneys are working out the final details. My puppy, Jedi, is over-the-moon excited to have me around, LITERALLY sitting on my feet all day. She got even clingier when the earthquake rattled our home (not funny Mother Nature) and she made me carry her 60-pound furry body from room-to-room for the next week. As life was boiled down to its necessities, I realized how often (in the before-times) I would bored-shop, bored-Starbucks and bored-TV-binge. Since March, I’ve narrowed that list down to bored TV binging. (Between “Better Call Saul” and “Ozark” I definitely
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know I should avoid the Mexican drug cartel.) As warmer weather approaches, I miss shopping for new spring clothes. Looking back on how Scarlett made dresses out of her velvet draperies, I tried channeling her creative spirit again. It was tough to made clothes out of our window coverings since we only have wooden blinds. But I did my best. Pictures not available. We’re still in lock-down mode. I replenish our milk and produce once a week. We walk the dog a dozen times a day. We work and eat and read and play games and get on each other’s nerves and fight and make up and write hopeful messages on the sidewalk in colorful chalk. Like Scarlett, there are lots of things I’ll worry about tomorrow. But if we have books to read, food to eat and our family is safe, I’m very content in my little corner of the world.l
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May 2020 | Page 23
COMFORT SOLUTIONS HVAC NEWSLETTER - ASK THE PROS!
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