January 2022 Good New Paper

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January 2021




January 2022

Wedding & Party Plan ning Feature Ins ide!


January 2021

Remember When

In 1899, Sebastian Spering Kresge opened a small five and dime store in downtown Detroit named S.S. Kresge. The first Kresge store sold everything for 5 and 10 cents. The low prices were popular with customers and they expanded quickly, becoming a discount chain with 85 stores and $10 million in sales by 1912. Kresge, a firm believer in giving back, started The Kresge Foundation in 1924 to “Promote the wellbeing of mankind. By the time of his death in 1966 at the age of 99, Kresge had given the foundation over $60,000,000. The first store with the Kmart name opened in Garden City, Michigan in 1962 under the leadership of executive, Harry Cunningham. Sixteen additional Kmart stores also opened in that same year. Though the store chain continued to open Kmart branded stores, the chain was still officially called S.S. Kresge Company. The Kmart chain followed Kresge’s philosophy - offer consumer’s products they need, at prices they can afford and they’ll keep coming back. Kmart, a big box, department store, discount chain was known for home goods, apparel and sporting goods. In addition, daily deals, celebrity brands ( Jaclyn Smith, Martha Stewart, Kathy Ireland and Lauren Hutton, to name a few), and the iconic Blue Light Special, which was an in store sale promotion, advertised using a rotating blue light, in the same style

a police car used, and was announced over the store public address system with the phrase “attention Kmart shoppers” During the 1970’s, Kmart put a number of competing retailers out of business and in 1977 S.S. Kresge Company changed it name to K Mart Corporation. Kmart made its debut in the Kalamazoo area in 1975 when they opened two stores, one in Kalamazoo at 4620 Stadium Dr., (Home Goods present location) and another in Portage at 6355 S. Westnedge Ave., (Dick’s Sporting Goods present location). Another store opened at a later date in Kalamazoo at 5450 Gull Road at the corner of Sprinkle Rd. (Menard’s present location). I have fond memories of shopping


at Kmart as a child, including: the excitement of the blue light specials – you couldn’t help but chase that blue light in search of a great deal. It was special to visit the snack bar for a sub sandwich and an Icee (they would even mix the cherry flavor and Coke flavors together, if you asked nicely). Another favorite Kmart memory is when my Mom got carried away shopping and lost track of time, realizing with only a few minutes to spare that the Tom Jones Show on TV was about to begin. We raced out of the store and home as quickly as possible so she wouldn’t miss her heartthrob. We still laugh about this! Kmart was the second-largest retailer in the United States after Sears, until November 1990, when Walmart passed it. At its peak in 1994,

Kmart operated 2,486 stores globally, including 2,323 discount stores and Super Kmart Center locations in the United States. Big Kmart (commonly known as Big K) came on the scene in 1997, with the first store in Chicago, IL. The new format focused on home fashions, children’s apparel, and consumables (The Pantry). Most Kmart stores were remodeled to this format during the late 1990s and the early 2000s. Initially, the Big Kmart stores were successful, and by the end of 1997, Kmart had seen their sales numbers grow by 10% due to success of their Big Kmart stores. During the 1980s, the company’s fortunes began to change; many of Kmart’s stores were considered to be outdated and in decaying condition. In the late 1980s and into the 1990s, the corporate office shifted much of its focus from the Kmart stores to other companies it had acquired or created, such as Sports Authority, Builders Square, and Waldenbooks. Kmart acquired Sears in 2005 and formed a new parent company, Sears Holdings Corporation. Since 2019, Kmart has been a subsidiary of Transform SR Brands LLC. After 122 years in business, sadly, the iconic discount department store closed its last Michigan store, Big Kmart, located in Marshall on Sunday, November 22, 2021. Jackie Merriam

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January 2021


Poinsettias in January?

Poinsettia plants add a bright spot of color into your Christmas home. But they don’t need to be thrown out in January! I have enjoyed poinsettia plants throughout the winter and even taken them outside in late spring to enjoy! Following are some fun facts and some plant care tips about poinsettias. History: The plant’s association with Christmas began in 16thcentury Mexico, where legend tells of a girl, commonly called Pepita, who was too poor to provide a gift for the celebration of Jesus’ birthday and was inspired by an angel to gather flowers from the roadside and place them in front of the church altar. Fun Fact: The showy colored parts of poinsettias that most people think of, as the flowers are actually colored bracts, which are modified leaves.

While visiting my son and his family in Denver, Colorado, I was out for a walk,

To get the most enjoyment out of your poinsettia plant, you should give it a little attention. With these easy care steps; you will be able to enjoy it the whole winter! Light: Place your plant in indirect sunlight for at least six hours per day. If direct sunlight can’t be avoided, diffuse the light with a shade or sheer curtain. Water: Water your plant when the soil feels dry to the touch. Don’t overwater your plant, or allow it to sit in standing water. It is important to always remove water standing in the saucer. Temperature: Use a large, roomy shopping bag to protect your plant when transporting it. At near freezing or freezing temperatures, the plant is quite susceptible to cold injury. Don’t place plants near cold

when I noticed a few stately homes with attractive pedestal mailboxes at the edge of their property. This peaked my curiosity and prompted this month’s column. The decorative cast aluminum mailbox in the picture is embossed with a horse-mounted rider, reminiscent of the Pony Express. The Pony Express offered “quick” (by mid-century standards – 10 day) delivery mail service between the Atlantic & Pacific coasts. I was surprised to learn that the Pony Express was only in existence for eighteen months from1860-1861, before being replaced by the transcontinental telegraph that made it possible to transmit messages rapidly over long distances. During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, before mailboxes, letter carriers would knock on the door and wait patiently for someone to answer. Efficiency experts estimated that each

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drafts or excessive heat. Avoid placing plants near appliances, fireplaces or ventilating ducts. Ideal temperature for poinsettia plants is 68 - 70 degrees. Don’t expose plants to temperatures below 50* F. Poinsettias are very sensitive to cold. Feeding: Fertilize your plant AFTER THE BLOOMING SEASON with Schultz liquid houseplant fertilizer. They get a bad rap: There is a common misconception that the poinsettia is highly toxic. POISINDEX, a major source for poison control centers, says a 50-pound child would have to eat 500 bracts to accumulate levels of toxins found to be harmful in experiments and an American Journal of Emergency Medicine study of 22,793 cases reported to the American Association

of Poison Control Centers showed no fatalities, and usually do not result in any type of medical treatment. The most common reaction is a mild rash from coming in contact with the sap from the plant. Next year? In my opinion, keeping a poinsettia plant to enjoy year after year is not worth the time and trouble. It can be done, by keeping the plant on the dry side and storing it in a cook dark area part of the year, but I have never seen a second year plant be lush & full. Another fun fact: In Mexico the poinsettia is a perennial shrub that will grow 10-15 feet tall. Terrie Schwartz Wedel’s Nursery, Florist & Garden Center

carrier lost 1 ½ hours each day waiting for people to come to the door, which prompted the Post Office Department to mandate that every home have a mailbox or letter slot to receive mail in 1923. Motor routes for rural areas began in the 1930’s and letter carriers delivered curbside. Motor routes have continued to increase in the ensuing years because of the convenience and the speed at which the mail can be delivered. The attractive vintage pedestal mailboxes are still functional in urban areas where mail is hand delivered, however, they also make a great decorative accent on a porch, in a garden or to any outdoor area. Jackie Merriam

Graphic Designer: Lauren Ellis Editor and Publisher: Jackie Merriam (269) 217-0977 - goodnews.jackie@gmail.com Like us on Facebook! This publication does not specifically endorse advertisers or their products or services. No part of this publication may be reprinted or otherwise reproduced without the written permission from the publisher.


January 2021


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be ART ful Here we go again…Happy New Year! 2022, I have a really good feeling about you. As they say, out with the old and in with the new. This is our month to embrace the end and begin again. Make room for a fresh start full of change and new experiences. A well known quote that resonates with me is by the author, Mitch Albom: “All endings are also beginnings.” So let’s begin! January brings an opportunity to rethink and reset goals, a chance to make space for what will help you achieve a positive, more mindful and an overall happier life. I’m happy around art! I love creating it and teaching it. It brings so much joy to my life to be immersed in such an artistic, vibrant and creative community that supports its arts. And with that, here is something new that I have just begun creating and would like to share with you. Romanced by old-school style pennants for as long as I can remember, it occurred to me that now is the perfect time to make my own and you can too! Supplies needed: felt . fabric scissors . hot glue . straight pins Step 1. I found the pre-cut 9” x 12” felt squares at a local craft store and choose an assortment of colors that

would compliment each other well. You will need two triangle pieces for each pennant. One being slightly larger than the other to give it a boarder. Dimensions are completely up to you and also dependent on how many letters you use. Step 2. For my pennants, I did not use a template and instead hand cut all the letters in a freestyle format. I also realized as I was making these that I am ok with the fact that the letters are not perfect in any way. Because you are working within a tapering form, each letter will be a bit smaller than the one next to it to fit on the pennant. I like to tug on my felt letters, ties and triangles to purposely give them a whimsical shape. You will also cut out the ties. My width coordinates with my letters and the length is about 8 to 12 inches depending on the size of the pennant. Step 3. Arrange the letters and pin to the top triangle, then glue everything in place and remove the pins. Next, you will fold the two ties in half and glue about an inch underneath, close to the corners of the lettered piece of felt. Lastly, lay the top pennant to the bottom one and glue together. These word pennants are a unique way to add a fun design element to

your wall space. They not only look great displayed together, but are fantastic alone too tied onto a stick or a dowel. They definitely make me happy and hope they will for you too! Have a great January and cheers to new beginnings! xo-Bridget

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January 2021


In Search of our Super-Powers A Mother and Daughter Adventure Series

Tiny Parties Jane: Tiny houses have been a thing for a while now. I kind of get why. These miniature houses have everything necessary for living in a compact, efficient space that takes maybe three minutes to vacuum. Totally makes sense to me. Then the pandemic hit and I don’t know anyone who wishes their house was smaller. I have used every inch of every room to do things like crafts, listen to music, sleep, yoga, talk on the phone, and throw parties. Tiny parties, mind you. I am not going to be a super-spreader hostess. How does one throw a tiny party? Firstly; people can be regular size, just the party is small. My favorite

tiny parties have only one invitee and myself. Last summer, I invited my good friend to come for lunch on my screen porch. I starched the tablecloth, ironed the napkins, and polished the silver plate. We had chicken with pine nuts, Spanish tapenade, and elderflower cocktails. We dressed up, wore our favorite rings, and left all the dirty dishes in the sink. Within a month we did it all over again on her porch. A few of my tiny parties have had three people, one was as large as six but that’s the limit. We often play Euchre, occasionally cribbage, and twice we did charades. The music is never too loud for conversation because that would be silly--the key to tiny entertaining is making the guest feel special. Ellen: Since moving into our new house, Michael and I have been

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spending every free moment on home renovation projects. Some are easily completed (new curtains) and some take a lot longer (build a code-approved staircase railing from scratch). Though most of these projects have been practical, a few have been more frivolous. Take, for instance, our basement pub. When we purchased the house, it came with an odd, windowless tropical themed room complete with green shag carpet from several decades back. Neither the vibe nor the smell were working for us, so the demolition took place on the first day we took possession of the property. Figuring out what to transform it into took longer, but we eventually landed on recreating the feel of the dark, cozy European pubs we enjoy so much. It took months of work, and a lot of help from our more renovation


savvy parents, before we successfully completed the room. The dim lighting and the soft glow of the faux tin ceiling do the job of convincing us that we aren’t in a Michigan basement across from the laundry area. I called my mom after our successful first party in the space. “How many people did you have over?” she asked eagerly. “One,” I replied, “It was perfect; the new floor really cuts the chill.” “One? That’s a tiny party!” “It’s a tiny party space,” I agreed, “but we didn’t want anything bigger. Tiny parties are the new vibe.” We already have two more tiny parties planned, with regular size people, of course. Jane Knuth and Ellen Radke


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January 2021


The Baller Ballerinas inas A Novel by Rachel Kapelke-Dale (St. Martin's Press) “Delphine is returning to Paris to choreograph her own ballet. Here she meets up with her lifelong friends and fellow dancers Margaux and Lindsay. This absorbing and thrilling character-driven novel explores the world of ballet and its mysteries and secrets. Give to fans of Luster, Trust Exercise, and My Dark Vanessa.” —Terri Smith, Cornelia Library, Mt. Airy, GA NoveList read-alike: The Turn-Out by Megan Abbott

December 2021 - The top tten en books published month that library staff across countrylove love. The top books published this monththis that librarians across thethe country Beasts of a Little Land A Novel by Juhea Kim

Br Bright ight Bur Burning ning TThings hings A Novel by Lisa Harding

The C Cat at Who Sa Savved Books A Novel by Sosuke Natsukawa

(Ecco) “Hauntingly tragic and beautifully tender, the story of Jade Ahn is interwoven with the fate of Korea in the early 20th century. Jade is apprenticed to a courtesan at a young age, and her friendships there form an unbreakable bond that leads them through multiple tragedies and loves. Recommended for fans of Min Jin Lee and Amy Tan.”

(HarperVia) “A searing portrait of addiction and recovery, told in the voice of Sonya, a former actress, raging alcoholic, and mother to four-year-old Tommy. When she almost sets the house on fire, her father forces her to rehab, if not for her sake, then for Tommy's. Sonya travels the difficult road to reintegrate into society and reclaim her beloved son. For fans of Shuggie Bain and All Fall Down. ”

(HarperVia) “A used bookstore, a grieving teen with an appreciation of reading, and a talking cat! What more could you ask of a fantasy? Throw in a mission to free lost and damaged books and a bit of readers' advisory, and you have a thoughtful exploration of the truths behind the pleasures of reading. For fans of author Roselle Lim and The Little Paris Bookshop.”

—Joy Matteson, Downers Grove Public Library, Downers Grove, IL NoveList read-alike: If You Leave Me by Crystal Hana Kim

AH Hist istor oryy of W Wild ild PPlaces laces A Novel by Shea Ernshaw

The LLo ove C Con on For book by recommendations from your Seressia Glass

(Atria Books) “Travis has a gift: when he touches something, he experiences the memories associated with it. His path to find a missing author leads him to a remote commune. Then he too disappears. When one of the residents of that commune finds his truck years later, he realizes that the darkness they fled may already be in Pastoral. For fans of Saint X and The Girls.”

Kalamazoo Public (Berkley Jove) Library Staff go to www.kpl.gov/blog/ “Engineer Kenya is a finalist

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on the reality show Cosplay or No Way, but to win she needs pal Cam to pretend he’s her boyfriend. This is a fun friends-tolovers, fake dating romance that will best suit folks into cosplay, cons, or geeky pursuits. For fans of Jen Deluca and Sara Desai.”

—Alezandra Troiani, Sno-Isle Libraries, Marysville, WA NoveList read-alike: Conventionally Yours by Annabeth Albert

—Deborah Smith, Weber County Library, Roy, UT NoveList read-alike: Mr. Splitfoot by Samantha Hunt

My Dar Darling ling Husband A Novel by Kimberly Belle

Sandwich & Pasty

—Lucy Lockley, St. Charles City-County Library, St. Peters, MO NoveList read-alike: Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi

—Lisa Burris, Bear Public Library, Bear, DE NoveList read-alike: Catch Us When We Fall by Juliette Fay

(Park Row) “Atlanta restaurateur Cam Lasky seemingly haswith it all,purchase of a beverage. until a fire at his eatery a or greater value, Ofand equal terrifying home invasion expires 2/28/22 threaten to destroy he with other coupons or specials) (not all valid holds dear. With multiple perspectives adding to -gift the cards availablemystery, this 8140 is another N. 32nd St. - Richland - 629-9902 Co. clever, fast-paced thriller from Belle. For readers of Lisa Gardner and Chevy Stevens.”

Mur urder der Under Her Sk Skin in A Pentecost and Parker Mystery by Stephen Spotswood (Doubleday) “These fun throwback hardboiled mysteries feature two female sleuths in the postwar 1940s--Lillian Pentecost, an unorthodox Brooklyn detective, and her unlikely partner, circus runaway Will Parker. Their second case involves a murder at Will’s former circus, and is perfect for readers of Rex Stout and Agatha Christie.”

—Patti Cheney, Pima County Public Library, Tucson, AZ NoveList read-alike: Blood and Circuses by Kerry Greenwood

The RReplacement eplacement W Wififee by Darby Kane

True Cr Crime ime St Stor oryy A Novel by Joseph Knox

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"Elisa's best friend, fiancée to her brother-in-law Josh, has disappeared and no one else seems worried. Elisa is suspicious of Josh, especially since he already has one dead wife. Will anyone believe her before it’s too late? For readers of The Girl on the Train and other unreliable-narrator thrillers.”

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—Jayme Oldham, Highland Park Public Library, Highland Park, IL NoveList read-alike: The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave

“What happened to Zoe Nolan? She walked out of her dorm room and hasn’t been seen since. Knox weaves together interviews, emails, and police reports into an immersive missing persons case that will leave readers gasping for breath up until the last page. For fans of The Word Is Murder and the Six Stories series.” —Carol Ann Tack, Merrick Library, Merrick, NY NoveList read-alike: Chasing the Boogeyman by Richard Chizmar Made in Librar LibraryA yAwar waree - w ww ww.librar .librarya yawar waree.com

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January 2021

A Happy New Year, Good News Paper readers! We hope your holiday was spent with family while relaxing, and full of fun- we all deserve it! What a year! If you read our stories here, you know one thing for sure: we love supporting local and small businesses. What do we love even more? Supporting local and small VINTAGE businesses! Well guess what? You can now shop and support seven (7) vintage vendors, six days a week, right here in Kzoo! Where is this vintage oasis you might ask? Well, it is right on the Downtown Walking Mall at Kalamazoo Fashion House (426 S. Burdick St. Kalamazoo, MI 49007)- affectionately known to vintage fans as “KFH” this shop has a ton of finds! Shop owner Anika Johnson (who actually runs TWO (2) vintage shops in Kzoo -also check out Great Lakes Thrift at 328 S. Kalamazoo Mall Kalamazoo, MI 49007) opened doors in November 2020 on KFH, and since then has added vendors stalls for six (6) additional vintage vendors. Let me tell you what, these aren’t just any vintage vendors- inside KFH you can find a curated selection from some of the Midwest’s BEST of the BEST vintage collectors! Excited yet? Here is a breakdown of the awesome vendors inside Kalamazoo Fashion House: Kalamazoo Fashion House / Great Lakes Thrift Company IG: www.instagram.com/kalamazoofashionhouse | www.instagram.com/greatlakesthriftco We pack our racks with all kinds

of goodies: a mixture of neutrals and textures from the KFH Collection to the bold plaids and workwear from Great Lakes Thrift; we’re hoping to have a lil’ bit of everything for our vintage and thrifty friends!

Golden Roller Skate IG: www.instagram.com/goldenrollerskate Hi I’m Abbie, coming at you out of Kalamazoo, Michigan. I’ve been scouring racks and dusty corners for vintage since I was a teenager. In my shop you will find a lot of clothes with funky patterns and happy colors, as well as good quality natural fiber basics. I like to bring a large assortment of accessories to markets; my selection of silk scarves are great for wrapping small gifts. In my spare time I like to create mildly offensive cross stitch pieces and hand dyed items. J-Bird Vintage IG: www.instagram.com/jbirdvintage At J-Bird Vintage I offer affordable, high quality and unique vintage/ retro clothing and accessories for everyone. Each piece is hand-picked by me for style and condition. I am constantly updating inventory with classic vintage pieces, featuring a wide variety of eras and styles; from the 1920s to current designs. I carry items from distressed denim and collectible concert t-shirts to high-end designer handbags and clothing. You will find reasonable and fair prices while having a great time picking out just the right outfit or item to suit your needs.


Love Charles Vintage IG: www.instagram.com/ lovecharlesvintage Welcome to Love Charles Vintage! Featuring hand selected vintage clothing from the 1910s to 1980s, picked for their overall quality and condition. I tend to fall in love with shapes and textiles, and pick my inventory accordingly, I have no favorite era! I dig through old homes, basements and closets. Then begin the mending, cleaning, photographing, and measuring process. Henry the poodle keeps me company while I work. While I adore a luxurious vintage dress as much as the next collector, it is very important to me to source plenty of staple pieces for the conscientious shopper that is trying to build a wardrobe. The store is always stocked with vintage for the most casual occasion, to the fanciest. Public Eye IG: www.instagram.com/public_eyewear We are the Public Eye. Our mission: reclaim deadstock sunglasses from the depths of dusty basements and back-room shelves. Once cleaned up and returned to your faces- let these rad babies do their work! This is 80’s-90’s gas station rack vibes, but the gas station is very cool. Come find some “throwaways” you will never toss. Sizo & Peny IG: www.instagram.com/sizoandpeny Hi I’m Jodi, owner and curator of Sizo & Peny Vintage! I’m originally from Ft Wayne, IN but now reside in

Kalamazoo, MI and I love to call it home! I sell at two shops- Kalamazoo Fashion House and Old Soul Vintage in Detroit. I occasionally open my vintage studio to the public and also sell at markets all over Michigan (and beyond) and that’s my jam, I love selling in person and really enjoy styling so don’t be shy! I love to help! I enjoy clothes from all eras but have a special love for 60’s, 70’s and 90’s and I strongly focus on size and gender inclusivity. United Thrift IG: www.instagram.com/unitedthrift Hey! I’m Sadie, owner of United Thrift. I’m based in Kalamazoo, MI and started United Thrift back in 2018. I sell mostly clothing from the 50s-80s, and focus more on minimal pieces and basics. I sell a variety of clothing from mens/womens/kids and also sell home decor! My vintage go-to’s are either a good sweater, thermal, or a bandana. You can find my stuff through my Instagram, at pop ups, or at Kalamazoo Fashion House! You can catch all these AMAZING vintage vendors on the Kalamazoo Walking Mall at 426 S. Burdick St. Kalamazoo, MI 49007. ALSO, as always, you can also head down the Walking Mall and support all of Kalamazoo’s great small brick and mortar shops, and grab a bite from local restaurants. Let’s get this year started right- by supporting LOCAL!! M + P | VintageintheZoo.com

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January 2021



Some Men Feel Lonely, and Need to Foster Friendships Loneliness and vulnerability aren’t often discussed by men, but they feel lonely and vulnerable too. Men often neglect personal relationships as they focus on their careers. They may feel like they have things to say but may not have a person that they are connected with. Some men find friendships in high school or college that carry throughout their lifetime; however, they struggle to maintain these relationships as they find themselves drifting from those social circles (Weiss, 2021). Men tend to bond over sports, fishing, competition, grilling etc. However, there are many men out there that don’t share these interests and have a difficult time finding a place that they fit in, especially when they rely on their partner to create their social life. This becomes quite noticeable when men find themselves divorced or widowed. Oftentimes men would like to connect with others more, but they don’t know where to look or how to start up conversations to build more than just an acquaintance. Also, some men didn’t grow up with a father figure and are looking for a mentor to guide them through life. It seems to be more difficult for men to openly admit that they are looking for support, a mentor, or a friend.

How can a man find a mentor or friend to share their needs or feelings with? There are many ways in which one could find a mentor or friend. If you attend church, there are groups you could join. Watch the congregation to see if there is someone that you look up to or feel like you could see yourself palling around with, and reach out. Reaching out may feel scary especially if you fear rejection. If church isn’t your thing, check out your local Meetup. For the Kalamazoo area go to https://www.meetup. com/cities/us/mi/kalamazoo/. Other cities offer these groups as well. You will find groups with interests common to yours. It may be difficult

to take the first step, but finding those connections are important as relationships promote a healthier overall mental wellness. It is just as important for men to be able to have their support systems, mentors, and friendships. Research has suggested that men

that have strong relationships in their lives tend to be happier overall in their lives (Weiss, 2021). Loneliness can also impact physical health and can be a risk factor for smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and stroke (Weiss, 2021). Men that have fewer relationships have been reported to account for 80% of successful suicides (Weiss, 2021). If you feel like you are having difficulty building relationships or struggling with self esteem/confidence, reach out to a local mental health professional. Mental health professionals can help you build self esteem, confidence, and work on your communications that may allow you the confidence to foster new friendships. Remember you’re worth finding a place that you feel like you fit in. All you have to do is invest in yourself. Julie Sorenson LPC

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January 2021



Why Does My Child’s Behavior Trigger Me? Ever have one of those moments when it feels as if your child knows exactly where your buttons are and is pushing every one of them? Reacting can happen in a flash leaving one to feel guilty and uncertain of their ability to parent. Getting to the bottom of why your child’s behavior triggers you is crucial to changing this reactive pattern and creating a healthier parent/child relationship. Read on for some common reasons why you may feel triggered by your child’s behavior: Having an unidentified need: One of the most common reasons one feels triggered can be having an unmet need. Taking care of yourself as a parent is crucial to being the best parent you can be. It is difficult to recognize and meet your child’s need

if you are unable to recognize and meet your own need. Feeling moody, unsettled, or irritable, stop to check in with yourself. Have you eaten, felt rested, had a break from parenting, done something playful lately? What is it you need to feel centered and present? Not understanding behavior is communication: Children’s use of effective language isn’t established until they are eight and their brains aren’t fully onboard until the age of twenty-five. The primary way they communicate is through actions. Frustrated with a behavior and putting a lot of energy into making it go away (time outs, sticker charts, etc.)? The behavior and our frustration will only increase until we express curiosity towards what our child is telling

us with their actions. For example: is your child refusing to go to school in the morning? It is often a sign that they need more help to cope with something stressful that is beyond their skill set. It is rare for a kid to come home and say, “I am finding this overwhelming, and I am not sure what to do about it.” Instead, they will avoid it, be irritable, and maybe distract from feeling badly by engaging in unwanted behaviors. Shame, guilt, anxiety, or past trauma: Sometimes as a parent there may be wounds from one’s own childhood. Small moments of need met with criticism or invalidation or larger incidents of ongoing neglect or abuse. Over time they leave sensitive spots. It is easy to forget they exist until a child brushes up against it causing a

parent to react more intensely than is called for. If you notice these emotional sore spots leading to feeling triggered by your child’s behavior, find a therapist to help explore where that wound might be, process it and find healing. Being triggered by a child’s behavior happens to every parent. Meeting each triggering moment with curiosity and compassion can help any parent identify the cause and work to reduce their frequency and intensity. This will promote healthier and more satisfying relational experience for both the parent and the child. Christina Thomason, LMSW Acacia: A Place for Personal & Family Development

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January 2021

Wedding & Party Planning Trends

With the uncertainty and chaos A COVID brought, 2022 events that are taking on the vibe of the core beliefs of the celebrant(s) and will be as unique as they are. Here are some unique trends that experts are forecasting for the coming year to contemplate adding into your main event. Events this year will range from big production with lots of pizzazz and people, to small and intimate gatherings. These unprecedented times have created the environment to ditch specific traditions and expectations and create an event that’s entirely your own. Relaxed luxury is on trend for 2022, creating less fuss and more

fun! Think cocktail style parties, food trucks parties, dance parties and everything outside the typical. My nephew and his fiancé are opting for an outdoor wedding on her parent’s property with taco food trucks and several distinctly different styles of music throughout the evening to reflect each of their wide-ranging musical tastes. COVID led many couples to elope or marry at city hall, in backyards and virtually. So now they just want an epic party with friends to celebrate. For destination events, the trend is to keep them here in America, with sites ranging from mountains, beaches, deserts, forests, big cities and more. A friend of mine’s family rented a beautiful estate for a long

weekend for their daughter’s wedding, with room for both families to get to know one another and enjoy the momentous occasion together at the estate. Multiple generational, multiple day events are on trend. Welcome parties, boat outings, brunches and after parties are just a few examples of the ongoing festivities to bring guests together and make them feel welcome. Individual servings will continue to be a mainstay for 2022 to serve guests safely. Unique examples include: tiny charcuterie boards, mini wedding cakes, canned cocktails, individual sushi flights and even dessert platters for one. Weekday events, especially Thursday’s are becoming a trend borne out

GOOD NEWS of the 2020-21 event cancellations. There is a surge in demand for event venues and vendors for the delayed celebration that COVID caused. Bold color palettes are replacing the muted tones that have been popular for years. Consider a color scheme that inspires you, whether that’s a vibrant palette, bold monochromatic tones or unexpected pops of color. Gold tones are also making resurgence. Gold chairs, gold flatware, gold in linens, etc. Fun should be on the event agenda. People have been cooped up for a long time due to COVID and are ready to party! An element of surprise will keep guests talking about your event for years to come. Dueling pianos, live event painters or even burros serving drinks to guests from basket halters strapped on their backs. Statement details, such as floral installations and specialty rentals like neon signage, personalized wedding menus and beautiful residential chandeliers and comfortable seating with throw pillow, will bring comfort and nostalgia into the event space. Take advantage of the changing times, and feel free to go ahead and change along with them while planning your next milestone event. This will not only make your big day memorable to you, it will also be memorable to your guests for years to come. Jackie Merriam Information gathered from theknot. com, southernliving.com

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January 2021

Wedding & Party Planning


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January 2021

How do you find the perfect wedding attire? Where to start? Have you considered going vintage? The beauty of planning a wedding today is that you can wear just about anything to create that one of a kind experience. There is no such thing as having to stick with traditions or specific attire. You have the joy and luxury of making it your own, true to who you are and the person you’re choosing to share your life with. So, where do you start with all this freedom of choice? The quick answer is, “Anywhere you want!” But one way to narrow it down is to take a look back in history, is there a certain decade you are drawn to, an era that flatters and speaks to you? Let’s take a look back in time at some unique and beautiful vintage options… We’ll begin with the Flapper style dress, a huge influence of the 1920s. Waist lines were often dropped low and hem lines could daringly be above the ankles. These shorter dresses were paired with a Juliet cap veil styled after the cloche hat. They were often elegantly simple, made of silk and lace. The ‘30’s style wedding dress was more traditional and often followed Hollywood and celebrity trends.


Beautiful satin dresses with long, extravagant trains became popular in the 1930’s, partially due to the rise in media and the society weddings publicized across the world. During the 1940’s, fashion was very much effected by WW11 and rationing. The ‘Make Do & Mend’ government campaign motivated women to be creative and reduce, reuse and recycle. Women often made their own dresses out of easy to find fabric or reused entire dresses. This often brought about a more practical and tailored look, such as a proper skirt and blazer paired with a hat and accessories. Many men were married in their uniforms and the women’s attire often modeled that trend. By the late ‘40s Christian Dior created the hour glass look with cinched waist that was all the rage. This look was paired with long, full skirts and lace that accentuated the small waist and made the wedding dress a formal event. This traditional and romantic fashion trend continued throughout the 1950’s and even into the early ’60’s with the help of famous women such as Queen Elizabeth and Grace Kelly. The mini dress was the hot look in the mid1960s and had a strong influ-

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Twiggy ence on wedding fashion. This decade mixed it up when it came to wedding style! Anything from the mini to ‘Babydoll’ dresses worn by Twiggy influenced the style. Long dresses were worn, but were often more simple and decorated with flowers instead of lace. This led into the 1970’s style wedding gowns that focused on the Hippy trend with long, simple flowing wedding gowns often accessorized with beads and flowers. This style is definitely making a comeback today, using 1970’s festival style dresses as wedding gowns. In 1981 Princess Diana’s wedding dress designed by BLAH became the most famous and influential wedding gown in history! Brides wanted the extravagant over the top dresses with big sleeves, long trains and skirts, and huge flowered bouquets. Today, the

Grace Kelly, cinch waisted gown 1980s and ‘90s offers some amazing contemporary options of two and three piece suits and pantsuits. Yves Saint Laurent tuxedos are both formal and flattering and offer a unique flare to the traditional wedding wear. There are also formal ‘80s pantsuits that offer a one of a kind high style wedding look. These are just a few fashion trends spanning the last 100 years! Whatever fashion era and style you choose, make sure to follow your heart and don’t be afraid to LOVE what is right for you. May you find that perfect wedding attire and best wishes for your special day and many more in the years to come! Jayne Gulliver Owner of JBird Vintage

January 2021


Wedding & Party Planning


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Piece by Piece 14

January 2021

I will rise with the sun and braid her rays of hope into my soul – Angie Weiland-Crosby Happy New Year dear readers. Another calendar year preparing to rise with promise like the sun that greets each new day. As I write, it is a few short weeks before 2021 whispers farewell. I reflect on the puzzle pieces that have completed the picture of my year. One beautiful puzzle piece is of a young soul in her late teens who is an exchange student from Armenia spending a year in the United States through a scholarship program. Her Armenian name means “Sun”; here in the U.S., she is known as Sunny. He could not have a more appropriate name.

When our paths first intersected, our dialogue was about profound loss and grief. Sunny is from a country in which each citizen has an intimate knowledge of genocide and war. Sunny shared with

me how all the songs of her country sound sorrowful; this is purposeful to honor the significant loss, totaling 1.5 million people. I had the privilege of hearing one of the songs. In those few puzzle piece moments, I listened to a song that transcended the need

to understand words I didn’t natively speak. A song of such beauty. And such healing. We talked of purpose, of sunrises, of finding the gifts in the moments we wish wouldn’t take place. We talked of not hiding grief; by honoring the pain, speaking it, and singing it, there is a letting go to step forward. We talked of the importance of embracing an exchange program in another country, leaving home to explore, discover, offer different perspectives that might teach awareness. Or gratitude. Or both. We talked of hope. I was blessed to have my path intersect with Sunny again to talk about more puzzle pieces of Armenia. Like how it is a culture of kindness. And generosity. And love. Sunny shared how if someone is lost, people will help show that person the road they are seeking. What especially resonated was when she said without nothing to gain for [doing so]. It is a country of courage and bravery, and determination and resilience. Even when enemies with high technological warfare have invaded this small country, eighteen-year-old boys have fought, pridefully, with shovels in hand, undeterred by the mighty power looming, threatening that these boys could be the reason more poems and songs hold the verses of mourning. We talked further of hope and how

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hope is Armenia’s second religion. The culture is one of family, the family name is Armenia. Sunny shared an example of one of their national holidays where everyone celebrates outside together, splashing each other with symbolic rose water in sacred respect for one another. Armenians praise their history for the beautiful chapters it holds; their darkest times have not extinguished the light of goodness that also makes up their history. Their culture is less about hurry and competition. Their


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January 2021



Getting a Grip on Things There’s been so many challenges these last couple of years, that perhaps you’ve struggled with just trying to get through the day. That’s one kind of “getting a grip”. The other kind is the handshake type of grip.

Studies have shown your grip strength can say a lot about how healthy, or unhealthy, you are. A 2016 study, which analyzed many studies involving people 60 and older, found that grip strength has a high predic-

tive validity for decline in cognition, mobility, and mortality. In other words, it serves as a stand-in for measuring general body strength and muscle mass, which decline with age. Medical professionals say that when you are stronger and become ill, you have the reserves that you can draw on to fight the disease. Without muscle strength your odds of overcoming the illness are significantly poorer. Frailty is often considered an inevitable part of aging. With research into grip strength and how it relates


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to overall health, medicine challenges this belief. Experience has shown that many younger adults are frailer than older adults. One significant finding is that low muscle strength is associated with a higher risk of dying. Research suggests for each 11-pound decrease (as measured by a dynamometer, an inexpensive piece of equipment found in most medical offices), we have a 16% higher risk of dying from any cause. For each 11-pound decrease in grip strength, we have a 17% higher risk of dying from heart disease. Grip strength was found to be a stronger predictor of all cause and cardiovascular mortality than systolic blood pressure. It’s interesting to note that researches are not clear as why this link exists. Of course grip strength is related to the overall muscle loss process as we age. In fact, low grip strength is the main diagnostic criteria of sarcopenia (muscle loss). So when the doctor shakes your hand when he walks into the examining room, s/he is likely doing more than saying hello. Medical professionals know that grip strength will decline after age 40, even in the absence of disease. However, why this happens is less clear. Variations in grip strength were observed in a variety of ethnicities and the results have been mixed. There still remain questions of grip strength

related to factors such as genetics, environment, and diet. The general consensus is that grip strength comes down to 50% lifestyle (diet and exercise) and 50% genetics. The important take-away from the research is grip strength is similar to the “canary-in-the-coal mine” analogy. It is predictive of other significant factors. This means that just working on your grip strength and ignoring everything else is not the moral of this story. It may help you open the pickle jar but it won’t necessarily improve your overall health. The focus should be on maintaining or improving muscle mass, which greatly reduces the risk of many conditions. In last month’s issue, I wrote about healthy bones and the importance of weight-bearing exercise. It turns out that weight-bearing exercise is just the thing for minimizing the loss of muscle, too. That looks like a two-fer to me. Please accept my sincere wishes for a happy new year. May it bring many blessings to you and yours. MAKE it a good day and remember to be kind. Till next time, Ken Dettloff ACE Certified Personal and Brain Health Trainer.

January 2021

Recipes The greatest power we have to improve our heart health can be found in our forks! One of the best resolutions we can make at the top of the year is to improve our health, which makes it the perfect time to take a peek at, “The 30-Day Heart Tune-up” a book by well-known cardiologist, Dr. Steven Masley MD. Offering concise, straight-forward explanations that pair well with his pull-no-punches delivery of insightful medical information, I for one appreciate that Dr. Masley translates all the medical jargon, and the bodily processes in a way that makes it possible for us to grasp the reasons behind our health problems, and ways for us to truly reverse them. Starting right off the bat with explaining that the cause of cardiovascular disease is simple -arterial plaque- he then explains that plaque is formed when certain foods we eat combine with inflammation present in our blood. When soft plaque lesions rupture,

Stri-Fry With orange ginger sauce



30 Day Heart Tune-Up! they release inflammatory chemicals that create blood clots, which can be deadly. In fact, these ruptures cause more that 80% of heart attacks, strokes, and sudden deaths today! Fortunately, a non-invasive ultrasound test called the Intimal Medial Thickness (IMT), can measure the thickness of arterial plaque in one small spot, and since plaque grows at the same rate everywhere in our body, this one small scan can reveal how much plaque growth we have everywhere! Another subject that Dr. Masley cleverly demystifies is cholesterol. “Cholesterol is actually essential for brain function, and for moving nutrients throughout our body,” Masley said in a recent phone interview. “So, it’s really not the bad guy it’s being made out to be. We have become so accustomed to thinking of cholesterol as dangerous that most of us have lost sight of the fact that we need it. This fatty substance makes our cell walls flexible, and it constitutes the building blocks of hormones like testosterone, and nutrients, such as Vitamin D. It also helps cover our

Easy to make, delicious flavors, and colorful. To modify this recipe, substitute shrimp or firm tofu for chicken. 1 1/2 cups raw brown rice 3 cups water 1 tablespoon nut oil, almond, or walnut 1 tablespoon grated fresh gingerroot 1 medium onion, diced 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, organic, free range, cut into strips 4 medium garlic cloves, diced 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced 2 cups broccoli 2 cups snow peas 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 1/8 teaspoon red chili flakes, or to taste 1/3 cup low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

nerve cells with a myelin sheath.” I personally liked Dr. Masley’s explanation on LDL cholesterol, the kind that we call “bad.” He refers to it as a bubble that carries fat-soluble nutrients, like Vitamin E, from our intestines to the rest of our body. “LDL acts as a delivery truck when we eat nutrient rich foods,” he said. “However, when you fill your LDLs with bad fats, it transforms them from a nutrient-carrying bubble into plaque, which then lines the arteries like trash bags blocking off traffic in an alley.” HDLs, on the other hand, are “healthy” cholesterol because they act like trash collectors cruising your blood vessels, picking up all those “bad” LDL bubbles. “Ideally, the minimal goal,” Masley said, “is to have more than enough HDLs (garbage trucks) to remove the LDLs (garbage bags) from your blood stream.” What might be surprising is that Dr. Masley stated that most cholesterol doesn’t come from our diets. “Our liver makes cholesterol while we sleep,” he said. “Moderate egg consumption does not raise choles-

terol levels, and eating shrimp is safe, as far as cholesterol goes, too!” What I appreciate most about this book is that while Masley is very good at pointing out problems, he’s equally good at offering up excellent solutions that can even reverse damage simply by adding fresh vegetables and fruits –in their natural state– to the end of our forks! “Packed with anti-aging nutrients, eating just four to five cups of vegetables a day can not only reduce our risk for heart attack and stroke by 35%, but also reduce cancer risks while helping us lose weight, too!” Here now are some wonderful ways to boost your vitality with recipes from Dr. Masley’s 30-Day Heart Tune-up– Enjoy!

2 four-ounce sirloin steaks (grass fed, organic) fat trimmed or tenderloins 8 ounces shrimp, extra-large, shelled, and deveined 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 2 tablespoons olive or grapeseed oil 2 tablespoons minced shallots 2 large garlic cloves, minced 1/2 teaspoon mineral sea salt 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1/4 teaspoon black pepper Marinate steaks and shrimp in vinegar for 5 minutes, turning occasionally. Drain and pat dry with paper towels. Combine oil, shallots, garlic, and spices (save 1 tablespoon of this mixture and set aside for brushing

layer) and rub into steaks and shrimp. Let marinade for 15 minutes, turning occasionally. Prepare grill or broiler, mediumhigh heat, 400 degrees to 450 degrees. Grill steaks until cooked to desired doneness, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Grill shrimp until pink, 2 to 3 minutes per side. After turning shrimp and steaks, brush the reserved tablespoon of marinade. Transfer to a plate and serve with a double vegetable portion and a salad with balsamic vinaigrette. Approximate servings per recipe: 2.

2 medium green onions, roots trimmed and discarded, sliced 1 tablespoon grated orange rind 1/3 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed and seeds removed 1 tablespoon tamari sauce, lowsodium (or low sodium soy sauce) 1 teaspoon sesame oil 2 teaspoons cornstarch Garnish: 2 tablespoon almond slivers (or chopped cashews) toasted Bring rice and water to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer. Prepare vegetables and chicken while the rice is cooking. 15 minutes before you are ready to serve, heat wok or large sauté pan over medium- high heat. Add oil gingerroot and onion, and stir occasionally until onion becomes translucent – about two minutes. Add chicken and stir until opaque, about 4 to 5 minutes. If using

shrimp or tofu, sauté for 2 to 3 minutes until shrimp turns pink or tofu is slightly browned. To wok, add garlic, bell pepper and broccoli, snow peas, pepper, and chili flakes. Stir occasionally for 2 to 3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a bowl, mix the broth, green onions orange rind, orange juice, tamari sauce, sesame oil and cornstarch. When vegetables are brightly colored and tender-crisp, add liquid to wok and stir until chicken and vegetables are coated with the thicken sauce, 1 to 2 minutes. Toast nuts for 1 minute in a sauté pan on a medium-high and sprinkle over stirfry, if desired. Serve immediately over hot rice. Approximate servings per recipe: 4.

Laura Kurella is an award-winning journalist, recipe developer, and selfsyndicated newspaper food columnist who enjoys life in Michigan. She welcomes your comments at laurakurella@yahoo.com.

Grilled Sirloin and Shrimp

By Dr. Steven Masley

by Dr. Steven Masley


January 2021

Owner, Sarah Plucinski’s dream has come true with the opening of Time to Shine Studio. The studio is a place where adults and children can come and connect to their inner light through yoga, music, art, journaling, etc., and then shine that light out into the community. Sarah is a Registered Children’s Yoga Teacher and is also certified to teach children with special needs and autism. She has been teaching children in the area since 2020 under the name Yoga Adventures. Children learn about yoga in a fun environment, by imitating animals and nature and by using creative expression, games, music, art and storytelling. “One of the kids favorite poses is the “sleepy butterfly.” The simple pose stretches the inner thigh, groin and knee, stimulates the heart, improves circulation, stimulates abdominal organs and relieves stress,” says Sarah.

She also teaches mindfulness to kids with the “3 breath hug.” Sarah brings yoga to homes, community centers, yoga centers and schools. She can often be found at the Vicksburg Historical Society and Historic Village with an after school program for ages 3-7 and another class for 6-10 year olds. To keep up on community events, be sure to follow Sarah on Facebook: yogaadventures4kids – feel free to private message her on the Facebook page. For more information and to schedule an individual or family yoga session or a party email: yogaadventures4kids@gmail.com or call or text (858) 999-1082. Parents have left several positive reviews on the Facebook page. Here are just a few: “I’m beyond impressed with Miss Sarah’s ability to engage kids and make yoga both exciting & relaxing. This is a great activity for kids’ body & mind! My

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Sarah continues to take yoga on the road, but is happy to announce her new studio, Time to Shine Studio located in the Westwood neighborhood at Grace Harbor Church at 811 Gorham Lane in Kalamazoo. Sarah offers pop up yoga and mindfulness events for all ages! Classes to look for taught by Sarah and other instructors at the new studio include: Dream Board Workshops, Gentle Yoga, Self Care Sundays, Family classes, Mom & Teen classes and After School yoga for Kids. For the latest updates, follow her on Facebook: timetoshineyoga. For more information, email: thetimetoshinestudio@gmail.com, call or text (858) 999-1082. Start the New Year off right at Time to Shine Studio and uncover that special light within you! Jackie Merriam

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January 2021


By the Way...

“ the story of storycorps ”

David Isay, recalls a family Thanksgiving dinner when he was about 10 or 11 years old. As he enjoyed talking with his grandparents and aunts, he got a tape recorder and recorded that conversation. One of his biggest regrets is losing that tape. Isay went on to become a radio producer with numerous broadcasting awards and founder of StoryCorps— where people across America record “the stories of their lives.” StoryCorps began in 2003 as a pilot project with a recording booth in New York’s Grand Central Station. There,

everyday people went into a small soundproof booth, and with the help of a facilitator, sat down for a recording session to share their thoughts and memories. When the session ended, participants received a copy of the recording and an audio file was sent to the American Folklife Center archives at the Library of Congress–preserved in perpetuity. The pilot project was a huge success. Since that beginning in Grand Central Station, where thousands of people pass each day, StoryCorps expanded across the United States – first with a

few Airstream trailers outfitted with a recording studio to capture the stories of people of all walks of life from big city to small. Acclaim for the work of StoryCorps to capture and preserve these first-hand stories continues to grow with more than a half million narrations. In 2015, thanks to a one-milliondollar TED Prize, StoryCorps launched a smartphone app along with a special project for teachers and high school students across the U.S. to recorded interviews with family members over the Thanksgiving

holiday weekend. The StoryCorps app is free and available to this day. The app also allows for individuals to record their own stories—perhaps sharing a significant message they would like family and friends to hear in their own voice—far into the future. Each of us has wished we had asked a parent, grandparent, neighbor, friend, or even a stranger, something for which we’ll now never know the answer. The brilliance of StoryCorps is that this no longer needs to be the case. And more, these recorded conversations will be available to future generations. One does not have to be a professional interviewer to make an audio recording. StoryCorps offers tips and advice on how to conduct an interview including a list of suggested questions to get started. It is simple to use; open the StoryCorps app and turn on the recording link, ask the question, and when the interview is done, hit “stop recording.” After entering a title, the names of the individual(s) involved, date and location, click on “upload to archive” and its sent to the Library of Congress. To find out more, go to StoryCorps. org. There, anyone can search the archives and listen to outstanding interviews produced by ordinary people. You may be inspired to download the app and contribute your own narrative to the collection about any aspect of your life – lessons learned, cherished memories, obstacles overcome, and a piece of personal history that will never be lost or forgotten. James D. Coppinger

100 word story “Sorry I didn’t have time to make this letter shorter.” Versions of that paraphrased quote have been attributed to several famous people including Winston Churchill, Mark Twain, Oscar Wilde and Abraham Lincoln. It means writing something clearly and to the point takes more time and effort than writing lots of words just hoping it makes sense. In The Elements of Style, the classic text book on writing by William Strunk and E.B. White first published in 1920, it states, “A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts.” Now, 100 years later, there is a form of writing that is growing in popular-

ity; it’s called “drabble.” Drabble is a story of 100 words—no more or no less. There are many variations of this writing style including “flash fiction”, “micro fiction”, micro memoir”, and “100-word stories”, and other derivations of these. Many websites and magazines have sprung up around the concept of these very short stories. One popular site is 100wordstory.org which invites the public to submit stories. The site also provides written prompts to stimulate story ideas as well as photos or images to trigger the same. Reader’s Digest, the perennially popular magazine, provides an ongoing writing contest called Your 100-Word True Story (https://www.rd.com/100word-stories-submissions/). The magazine selects its favorites from the

monthly submissions to publish in the magazine and a $100 prize. As an example of a 100-word story, I wrote the following piece. It is exactly 100 words.

Just Desserts Two brothers often found themselves competing over who would get the last piece of pie or another food item they both enjoyed. Obviously, their parents insisted that whatever was left, no matter the size, rather than one taking all, they should share. It was the most reasonable solution to satisfy both sons. And while both agreed this was fair, they realized that equitably dividing the dessert presented a problem. Their father offered an insight for a solution to the sons’ impasse. He declared that, hence, one son would divide the dessert and the other would choose which piece he wanted. To have a bit of fun, and to inspire your creativity, I challenge you to write

a 100-word story (plus a title—title is not included in word count) based on the story you see from the picture of the fortune cookie with a partial message. Mail your 100-word story entry (one entry per person) along with your name, address and phone number to MY 100-WORD STORY CONTEST at 2917 Duchess Drive, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 postmarked no later than (DATE). Good News Paper will select a winning entry and publish it in an upcoming issue of the Good News Paper. By submitting an entry, you also agree to give Good News Paper permission to publish your story in its publication. As a bonus incentive to enter our 100-Word Contest, Sweetwater’s Donut Mill will give the writer of the winning entry a FREE dozen donuts! Writing your first small story just might be a big first step in sharing your special stories! James D. Coppinger

January 2021



let it sn0w!

If you live in Michigan, you’d better either like snow or prepare to be unhappy a fair bit of the year. For practical purposes, “snow season” begins typically in early December and is still a possibility into March, or even early April. I, for one, am still thrilled when that first, significant snowfall occurs. I love to get up early and look outside, into the darkness, to see the snow piling up on roofs and streets. As a

longtime teacher, I sometimes even performed a few snow-day rituals. You know – spoon under the pillow, pajamas on backward, ice cubes in the toilet. The punctuation of a snow-day in the middle of a busy week was always a welcome and unexpected respite. I suspect that the year-long suspension of in-person instruction due to COVID may have put a damper on the thrill of time away from classwork,

but I think most students will still enjoy a snow-day break in the routine. What better excuse to enjoy seasonal outdoor activities, like skiing, building a snowman or making snow angels? Snow serves a critical role in ecosystems and is responsible for many of the pleasures associated with living in the Midwest. According to Dr. Robert Ruhf, a researcher at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo typically receives an annual average of slightly under 76 inches of snow, compared to the national average of just under 29 inches. Why do I think this makes us lucky? Aside from the quiet beauty of a wintery morning, snow, or more correctly, snowmelt, is an excellent way of recharging our regional freshwater systems. Water from the melt flows into our local tributaries and then into the Kalamazoo River, ultimately feeding Lake Michigan. Perhaps even more important than surface water runoff is groundwater, the water that percolates down into the soil, accumulating in aquifers. These underground pools, deposited by the retreat of glaciers at the end of the Ice Age, collect this precious resource for our use as tap water. In 2019, the City of Kalamazoo Water Department pumped water from 98 wellfields to supply our local region with almost 7 billion -yes, with a “b” – gallons of freshwater for personal, business, and governmental purposes. As I watch the plight of western U.S. states that grapple with drought and water rationing, I am so grateful to live here, where water is so abundant. Michigan doesn’t, however, have an abundance of sunny days in the winter. We typically have cloudy skies due to our proximity to the Great Lakes. Here again, snowfall supplies a critical surface to reflect light, known scientifically as albedo. As the sun’s rays strike the Earth, much of that light reflects back into the atmosphere, keeping the planet’s surface suitable for life. The albedo provided by snow is a vital way to dissipate solar heat. On a global scale, the importance of this reflected light is a critical driver

of the warming of Arctic regions. Less ice and snow in those important ecosystems mean that less sunlight is being reflected back into the atmosphere. This results in continued warming of the Arctic ice shelves and less ice and snow is deposited. The end result of this loss of reflected surface is a rise in seawater in our oceans. This spells trouble for populations in coastal flood zones all around the world. Even on land, in our own yards, snow serves multiple roles in the life cycles of both plants and animals. Since about 90% of the volume of fallen snow is air, the space between the flakes slows down the transfer of cold air to the ground, much the way a puffy, down coat keeps us warm in cold temperatures. This loft makes snow an effective insulator, and small plants can be sheltered from extremes in temperature by nestling under the pile. Numerous perennial seeds require a season of wintering to soften their hard seed coats in preparation for germination in the spring, and a nice nap under a layer of snow can be beneficial insurance for spring growth. Small animals can conserve precious energy, taking advantage of snow’s insulating effects, by burrowing between leaf litter and surrounding snow deposits to build a winter home. These warm-ish dens are generally safe from predators and frequently connect a series of tunnels to form a neighborhood of sorts. If you’ve ever watched your dog pounce head first into the snow, it may be that he has perceived some of this activity. In closing, I hope that the next time you’re shoveling, whether it’s your roof or driveway, you will consider the benefits of snow to our ecosystem. Take a quiet, snowy walk, strap on snowshoes, or grab a sled. The gifts of snow are many! Cheryl Hach Retired Science Teacher Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center


January 2021


FREE january Events virtual

Museum to Host March 6

Due to Corona virus be sure to call or look online for possible event changes or cancellations. Through February 26 Around the World Reading Challenge, ages 16+ Richland Library Through February 26 Winter Movie Challenge All ages, Richland Library

Thursdays, Jan. 6,13,20,27 Preschool StoryTime, ages 0-4 1pm, Richland Library

Tuesday, January 11 Teen Advisory Group, with snacks, 6pm, Comstock Library

Thursdays, Jan. 6,13,20,27 After school fun: science, art & Games, 4-4:45, Ransom Library

Wednesday, January 12 Birds & Coffee Chats on Zoom: Birding & Mindfulness, 10-11am, register: Birdsanctuary.kbs.msu.edu

Sat., Jan. 1 – Tues., Mar. 1 Family Winter Reading Program, Comstock Library

Thursday, January 6 DIY Birdseed Cakes, 5:30pm Registration begins 12/27 Comstock Library, 345-0136

Saturdays, Jan. 1,8,15,22,29 Kalamazoo Winter Market 8am-1pm, New Location: St. Joseph Church, 930 Lake St.

Friday, January 7 Memory Café- in person, for those with mild dementia & care partners, 1030am-Noon Paw Paw District Library

Mondays, Jan. 3,10,17,24,31 Parchment Update Interview Series @parchmentlibrary.org

Friday, January 7 Teen Advisory Board, ages 11-17, Richland Library

Mondays, Jan. 3,10,17,24,31 Family Storytime, 10:30am Comstock Library

Friday, January 7 Art Hop, Downtown Kalamazoo & Vine Neighborhood, 5-8pm

Friday, January 14 Kids Craft: DIY Valentine’s Day Cards, 3pm & 4pm Registration begins 12/31

Tuesday, January 4 Preschool “Weather” Curiosity bags ready for pick up Paw Paw District Library

Saturday, January 8 Internet Users Group, 10amNoon, Paw Paw Library

Saturday, January 15 Pokemon Club, ages 6-11 10am, Richland Library

Tuesdays, Jan. 4,11,18,25 Family Storytime, 10:30am Comstock Library

Saturday, January 8 Art Detectives: Feel Teal ages 4-8, 10:30-Noon Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Saturday, January 15 Healthy & Fitness Wellness Expo, 10am – 4pm Kalamazoo Expo Center

Tuesdays, Jan. 4,11,18,25 Drop In Gaming, ages 11-17 3pm, Richland Library

Saturday, January 8 Disney Family Trivia, 11am Register, Comstock Library

Tuesdays, Jan. 4,11,18,25 Teen Tuesdays, 3-4pm Ransom District Library

Mondays, Jan. 10,17,24,31 Story Time for Children w/adult 10am, Register ahead: 657-3800 Paw Paw District Library

Monday, January 17 Teens Take Home Kit: Among Us handwarmers Paw Paw District Library

Wednesday, January 5 Mystery Club -Take & Solve Kit ages 16+, Richland Library Wednesdays, Jan. 5,12,19,26 Wednesday Wigglers, ages 3-5, Stories, songs & dancing, 10am Register ahead, Richland Library Wednesdays, Jan. 5,12,19,26 Story Time, 10:30-11:15am Ransom District Library Wednesdays, Jan. 5,12,19,26 Family Storytime, 10:30am Comstock Library Wednesdays, Jan. 5,12,19,26 Learn About eBooks, 11-12pm, Richland Library Wednesdays, Jan. 5,12,19,26 Whatever Wednesday for teens & tweens, 1:45-3pm Paw Paw District Library Thursdays, Jan. 6,13,20,27 Musical Mayhem Storytime 10:30am, Comstock Library Thursdays, Jan. 6,13,20,27 Musical Mayhem Storytime 11:30am, Comstock Library

Monday, January 10 Great Michigan Read Launch Party, 4-6pm, Parchment Library Monday, January 10 Parchment Book Group, 6pm Parchment Library Tuesday, January 11 Teen Winter Take & Make Kit Ages 16+, Richland Library Tues., Jan. 11 – Fri., Jan. 14 Winter Drop-in Crafternoons, Teens/Adults, Richland Library Tuesdays, Jan. 11 & 25 Adult Coloring Group, 10am Reserve ahead: 657-3800 Paw Paw District Library Tuesday, January 11 ARTbreak: Encounter, Noon Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Wednesday, January 12 Teen Advisory Group w/snacks 2pm, Comstock Library Wednesday, January 12 Pokemon Club, ages 6-11 3pm, Richland Library Thursday, January 13 Family Night: Dinner & Fun! 6pm, Comstock Library

Mon., Jan. 17 - Fri., Jan. 21 Adult Pop-up Craft: Pompom Penguins, Registration begins 1/17, Comstock Library Monday, January 17 Mystery Book Club, 4pm Parchment Library Tuesday, January 18 Half -Day Drop-in: Emoji Cookie Decorating, 1-3pm Comstock Library Tuesday, January 18 Mangia Mania for teens, 3pm Paw Paw District Library Tuesday, January 18 Michigan Copper: Formations & Shapes, presented by Bill Mitchell, 6pm, Parchment Library Tuesday, January 18 Master Class: Sebastian Vera, 7pm Trombone, WMU Dalton Center

Tuesday, January 11 Make a Snow Globe for kids 4:30-5:30, Paw Paw Library

Wednesday, January 19 Convocation Series: Sebastian Vera, Trombone, 1pm, WMU Dalton Center Recital Hall

Tuesday, January 11 Author Visit : Arnie Johnston & Debra Percy, 6-7pm Paw Paw District Library

Wednesday, January 19 Half-Day Drop-in: Games/snacks 1-3pm, Comstock Library

Wednesday, January 19 Book Discussion: Two Trees Make a Forest: Travels Among Taiwan’s Mountains & Coasts In Search of My Family’s Past By Jessica J. Lee, 2-3pm Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Thursday, January 20 Half-Day Drop In: Super Mario Party Showdown 1-3pm, Comstock Library Thursday, January 20 Heartbreak Book Club, 6:30 Paw Paw District Library Thursday, January 20 Movie Night! Bill Traylor: Chasing Ghosts, 6:30-8pm Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Friday, January 21 Teen Book Group, ages 11-17 3pm, Richland Library Friday, January 21 Tween Nerf Wars, Register & permission slip required pizza & snacks served, 6pm, Comstock library Saturday, January 22 Saturday Storytime, 11am Comstock Library Tues., Jan. 25 – Sat., Jan 29 Puzzle Exchange Week Richland Library Tuesday, January 25 ArtBreak: The Resonance Project, Noon – 1pm Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Tuesday, January 25 Children Make a Light-up Cup Cozy, 4:30pm Paw Paw District Library Wednesday, January 26 Show & Tell: My Copper CountryStory, presented by ThomasPayne, 6pm, Parchment Library Thursday, January 27 Trivial Pursuit Team Trivia Ages 18+, 7pm, Register: Richlandlibrary.org Sat., Jan 29- Sun. Feb. 6 Kalamazoo Craft Beverage Week 2022 Monday, January 31 Adult Craft: Plaster Flower Decorated Jar, 6pm, Register Begins 1/24, Comstock Library Monday, January 31 Valentine’s Mail for Kids – Receive a handmade card From the Youth Group, Register 345-0136, Comstock Library

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