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May 2021





May 2021

May 2021

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Hoekstra Hardware began as a small general store delivering goods in a horse-drawn covered wagon. Dutch immigrants, Jurian and Lucy Hoekstra, started L. Hoekstra Co. in 1867. Well over a century later, it became the oldest retail store in Kalamazoo and the third oldest hardware store in the state. I’m sure Jurian and Lucy never imagined their general store would continue for 149 years under the Hoekstra Hardware name. The secret to their success lay in carrying a variety of products at affordable prices. Their values, which were in part due to their Dutch heritage, included hard work, thrift, honesty and the inherent desire to help others. L. Hoekstra Co. was located at 625 Portage St. and was a small frame store with living quarters attached. When Jurian suddenly died in 1886, his wife and 6 children (5 sons & a daughter) continued the growing business, building a red, two-story building on the same site as the original frame building in 1898. In the early 1900’s the store was named Hoekstra’s Grocery and Bazaar and hardware items became a major part of the business. Around this time, the bustling Portage Street had its hardwood blocks, replaced

with more durable red bricks. In 1917, John Hoekstra, the oldest son, started his own tire rebuilding business one block north of Portage St. on Second Street. His two sons joined him and they added non-electric vacuum cleaners called Vacuette, which later became Kirby, to increase sales during slower months. They eventually dropped the tire business and became Hoekstra Sales Co., selling and servicing small and large appliances and carrying parts and accessories not available elsewhere. John died in 1942 and the business was moved in 1945 to adjoin to the hardware store at 617 Portage St., but continued as a separate entity. When Jennie Hoekstra, the last of Jurian’s children who worked at the hardware store died in 1946, no family members were interested in running the business and employee, Henry Hoogerheide, acquired the company. Two other employees, John Izenbaard and James H. Ippel, joined him later. During their heyday in the 1970’s, Hoekstra Hardware employed 14 full-time workers in their 7,500 square foot store. They sold tools, plumbing, and electrical supplies and had an extensive housewares department that I enjoyed perusing over the

years. In addition, they sold lawn and garden products, lawn mowers, snow blowers and fireplace equipment. They had a repair department for lawn mowers and small engines and offered fireplace repair services. Their service department was known far and wide and carried replacement parts not found elsewhere. Hoekstra’s prided themselves on their ability to answer customer’s questions on home projects and repairs.

The majority of their business came from individual customers, with about 20% coming from electrical, plumbing and other building products for commercial accounts. The three owners worked alongside their son’s in the hardware business and transferred the positions of power to their sons in the 1980’s when Daniel Hoogerheide, Phil Ippel and Tom Izenbaard took over the helm. Daniel Hoogerheide sold his interest in the business in 2006 due to health issues. John Izenbaard, Tom’s dad, continued working at the store until he was 91 – having worked there for more than 75 years, passing away in 2013. Ownership of the appliance store, Hoekstra Sales Co, stayed in the family and transferred over the years to two grandsons and a great grandson, Jack Hoekstra and his wife, Marian. After 149 years in business, Phil Ippel and Tom Izenbaard retired and closed Hoekstra Hardware in December 2016. Jackie Merriam

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May 2021


Pruning Your Shrubs and Helping Them Put on Their Best Flower Show Gorgeous yellow, pink, red, orange, white and purple blooms put on a show in early spring from plants like forsythia, lilac, azaleas, rhododendron, mockorange, weigela and bridal wreath spirea. Summer then greets us with bold blossoms in hues of purple, magenta, blue and red from butterfly bush, hydrangea, crape myrtle and rose-of-sharon. These deciduous shrubs provide a beautiful backdrop for the garden and most of these plants only require basic watering, fertilizing and pruning. Why not add them to your yard today? More Blooms, Better Blooms To keep your shrubs healthy and blooming prolifically, it is important to know which plants to prune at what times. Before you go chopping away, do a little research about when your shrub should be pruned. If you don’t do it at the right time, you won’t get many (or any) of those gorgeous flowers to enjoy.

Shrubs to Prune When Dormant

Shrubs that produce flowers on wood grown in the same season should be pruned in late winter or very early spring. This allows time

for the wood to grow and the current year’s buds to set to produce more beautiful blooms the next year. • Abelia • Beautyberry (Callicarpa) • Bluebeard (Caryopteris) • Butterfly Bush (Buddleia – except Alternifolia) • Cinquefoil (Potentilla) • Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia) • Hydrangea (Paniculata and Arbo rescens) • Rose • Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus) • Spirea (all species that bloom in summer)

Shrubs to Prune Immediately After Flowering

Shrubs that bloom on year-old wood and need to be pruned just after blooms fade. This allows enough time for the new branches to form next year’s buds. • Azalea • Barberry (Berberis) • Beautybush (Kolkwitzia) • Heather (Calluna) • Daphne • Deutzia • Forsythia

first week of May. These special people help each generation of kids learn about the world around them. Teachers have recently had the challenge of adapting teaching techniques from in person to online and a combination of the two. I was so impressed with my grandson’s teachers who at the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic, quickly put together learning packets, delivered learning tools to their home and checked with The month of May celebrates them on a daily basis via email – many amazing individuals that care even reminding them about gym day for children. They may be called and getting 30 minutes of exercise. teacher or Mom, but I would call The second Sunday each May, this them super heroes. At no other time year, May 9th, celebrates all mothin my lifetime have these roles been ers. Mom’s number one priority is more important or challenging. making sure that the people they Teacher appreciation week is the

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• Honeysuckle (Lonicera) • Hydrangea (Macrophylla, Seratta and Quercifolia) • Kerria • Lilac (Syringa) • Mock Orange (Philadelphus) • Pieris • Rhododendron • Scotch Broom (Cytisus) • Spirea (spring blooming varieties like bridal wreath) • Weigela • Witch Hazel (Hamamelis) Still Not Getting Any or Many Blooms? Even with proper pruning, it is possible you may not be seeing the blooms you’d hoped for. Some routine maintenance will help keep your plants healthy so they can produce those fantastic flowers. If you haven’t already done so, fertilize plants this spring with PlantTone, Holly-Tone (for those acidloving azaleas and rhododendron) or similar products. Move the mulch and sprinkle the food lightly over the soil at the outer edges of the plant, then water well. Replace the layer of mulch to help conserve moisture and

prevent most weed growth. Though an established shrub can endure a moderate drought, it will flower more reliably if you help it through the dry weather with a weekly watering. Consider a drip system to provide good water and minimize evaporation. Other reasons your shrub may not be putting on its best flower show might include improper lighting or incorrect soil conditions. If a plant does not receive enough sunlight or if the soil pH isn’t suitable for that type of plant, it will not flower, as it should. The Plant Doctors at Wedel’s can do a free soil pH test – just bring in a cup or so from near the shrub. If you’re having trouble with a particular plant, stop by or call us to help you find out why. And, remember, sometimes it just takes patience. Some plants, like wisteria, can take up to seven years to produce flowers, but will be well worth the wait for the amazing show they produce. Terrie Schwartz Wedel’s Nursery, Florist & Garden Center

love are safe sound and healthy. However, homeschool teacher has recently been added to many moms’ job descriptions. I am in awe of my daughter, who is a full time nurse, and has risen to the challenge of educating her children this past year. Her creativity is impressive and the boys are enjoying their lessons…. Well, most of them! Take the time to acknowledge the teachers & Mom’s in your life with a card, a gift or even just a “thank you” to show your gratitude. Happy Mother’s Day & Teacher’s Appreciation Week to all of you super heroes! Jackie Merriam

Photo Courtesy of Bridget Fox

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.


May 2021


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May 2021


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

A New Kind of Adventuring

Jane: For the first time in fourteen months, I am going to be in a crowd. A huge crowd made up of hundreds of people all under one roof inside a large building. Understandably, I am a bit nervous about this. I pull into the nearly full parking lot; scores of people are walking back and forth from their cars to the main entrance door. I am a little early so I breathe deeply, and looking in the rearview mirror, I put on my mask, tucking in the edges against my cheeks. My phone says it’s time so I emerge from my car and join the others walking across the pavement. Besides the grocery store, I haven’t been around strangers for over a year. It’s sure nice to see so many people! Inside the entranceway the greeter directs me toward the right where another volunteer asks how I am feeling today and if this is my first time. Both affirmative answers receive a warm smile from the lady’s eyes as she points the way to a large room with roped off lanes that keep the mass of people moving in Disney World style lines, down the

length of the room then back, six feet apart, past people of all ages, in flipflops and business suits, some in wheelchairs, and some pushing baby carriages. These are my neighbors, my townfolk, my perfect strangers, and I love their nervous fingers clutching their paperwork, love their brave jokes with the National Guard members, love their determination to stop this pandemic with courage and compassion. “Relax your arm,” the nurse says to me. “Oh, honey, that arm hasn’t relaxed for a year. I’m not sure it remembers how.” She laughs and so do I. It feels so good to laugh with this wonderful human being that I want to hug her. But I don’t. It’s only my first shot. I can wait a bit longer. Ellen: “So how did you find out how to book your appointment?” I ask the woman standing on the carefully marked X on the floor six feet in front of me. “I got a lot of tips from the Vaccine Hunters group on Facebook.” “Reddit!” She says, her glance

pinging nervously around the large stadium we are currently in. “This feels so weird, I’ve never even been to a football game here before--figures it’d be something like this to get me downtown.” “Same.” We both take a moment to survey the scene: busy Air Force officers and FEMA officials run various processing stations, keeping us moving briskly towards the vaccination booths. The two girls behind me in line are young, probably college students. “How did you guys get your spot in line?” “Tik Tok!” The taller one says and they both appear to smile behind their double masks. “Our classmate posted about how he found a time slot, so we just copied what he did. I can’t believe it worked!” I nod. My heart is racing with a combination of adrenaline and nerves, this all feels a bit surreal, it’s hard to believe that after a year of waiting and worry, here we are on the edge of a fix. “I think I’m going to cry after I get it,” the woman in front of me says suddenly. “Is that dramatic? I’m just so excited to see my grandma.”

“I totally understand,” I assure her and at that moment she reaches the head of the line and a sergeant motions her forward towards a curtained booth. “Good luck!” She smiles, and then it’s my turn. The man controlling crowd-flow points me forward towards my destination. “You ready?” he asks. “Step right down to where that man is waving.” Ready? Never readier. Ellen Knuth & Jane Knuth

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Directions 1. In a small bowl whisk together the vinegar and honey. While whisking, slowly drizzle in the Blood Orange Olive Oil. Season with 1/4 tsp. sea salt & pepper. Set aside. 2. Add the pancetta to a skillet and cook until crispy, about 5-7 minIngredients utes. Remove from the pan, leav• 2 Tbsp Strawberry Balsamic ing any renderings. Vinegar 3. Drizzle Frantoia Olive Oil in pan. • 1 tsp Honey Add the asparagus, sprinkle with • 1/4 cup Blood Orange Infused remaining 1/4 tsp. Sel Gris, and Olive Oil cook until bright green, about 3-4 • 1/2 tsp Sel Gris Sea Salt, divided minutes. • 1/4 tsp Fresh Ground Black Pepper 4. Place the greens on a large serv• 8 slices Pancetta, diced small ing platter. Toss with the dressing • 1 Tbsp Frantoia Italian Extra Virgin to coat. Olive Oil 5. Arrange the strawberries, crispy • 8 Asparagus Spears, cut into 1” pancetta, asparagus, and chopped pieces pecans on top of the dressed • 4 cups Salad Greens greens. Enjoy!

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May 2021


The IIntimac ntimacyy Exper Experiment iment by Rosie Danan (Berkley Jove) “Having built the Shameless platform to teach people how to find their own pleasure, Naomi wants to take that sex positivity to a lecture circuit, but no one will hire her. Enter Ethan, a young, handsome rabbi with a struggling synagogue. A seminar series on modern intimacy seems like a good way to build a sense of community and attract a younger congregation. What happens is their own lesson in intimacy, as two people passionate about their work and trying to make the world a better place sizzle with chemistry. Give to fans of The Roommate, The Kiss Quotient, and Meet Cute.” —Hebah Amin-Headley, Johnson County Public Library, Overland Park, KS NoveList read-alike: How to Fail at Flirting by Denise Williams

April il 2021 - The published top tten en booksthis published this that month that library staff acrossthe the country country love. TheApr top books month librarians across love Br Brok oken en (in the best possible wa way) y) by Jenny Lawson (Henry Holt & Co.) “Lawson is a hot mess of depression and anxiety. She is also funny as hell. In this book she lays herself open. She celebrates all those awkward and difficult parts of herself and invites you to celebrate your own. She will make you laugh until you cry, and then she wraps up the episode with some profound truth that catches you unaware. For readers who like David Sedaris and Ali Wong.”

S The N Night ight Alwa Always ys C Comes omes A Novel by Willy Vlautin

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"Beekeeper Alice is an older widow who is working to save her small town from big corporate greed. She forms an alliance with two young adults who both find unexpected joy in nature. For those who enjoyed Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine."

—Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI NoveList read-alike: The Love Story of Missy Carmichael by Beth Morrey

Second FFirst irst IImpr mpressions essions A Novel by Sally Thorne

—Melissa Stumpe, Johnson County Public Library, Franklin, IN NoveList read-alike: Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert

(Forever) “Jimenez hits it out of the park again. She combines real-world issues with the get-the-girl, lose-the-girl dynamics of a romance. In this case, Adrian has a good chance of losing Vanessa to ALS. They both have multiple family issues including a hoarding father, an abandoning parent, a sister with addiction issues, and a baby niece that needs attention. Give to fans of Mia Sosa and Josie Silver.”

The M Music usic of Bees

(Del Rey) “Alyce is the sole Dark Grace in Briar, a kingdom whose people love their Graces (the magical ladies who give them special elixirs). But Briar has a problem with their princesses: they die at 21 unless they kiss their one true love. Princess Aurora doesn't seem to be interested in any of the princes. This LGBTQ re-telling of Sleeping Beauty is creative and fun, with a perfect ending. For fans of Spinning Silver and Gods of Jade and Shadow.”

(William Morrow Paperbacks) "Ruthie Midona, twentyin a $7495 Strawberry Lemonade $8500something, Gardenworks Parade retirement community and feels like she fits in more with the residents than with her peers. Enter an attractive tattooed man assistant hired by the eccentric 90-year-old Parloni Sisters. This romance is filled with heart and laughter. For readers of Helen Hoang and Jasmine Guillory."

(Berkley) “Meddy’s blind date doesn't end as planned, and she now has a corpse to dispose of. Her mother’s solution: call in the three aunties. What follows is a roller coaster ride of a weekend with the Chan family trying to get rid of the body while working at a high profile wedding. A fast-paced and darkly humorous debut with sweet romantic moments throughout. For fans of My Sister, the Serial Killer and Get a Life, Chloe Brown.”

—Maggie Holmes, Richards Memorial Library, North Attleboro, MA —Laura Eckert, Clermont County Public Library, Milford, OH NoveList read-alike: Vanessa Yu's Magical Paris Tea Shop by Roselle Lim NoveList read-alike: Love Walked In by Marisa de los Santos

Malice A Novel by Heather Walter

—Carrie Minthorne, Cedar Mill Library, Portland, OR NoveList read-alike: Tangleweed and Brine by Deirdre Sullivan

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(Harper) "Lynette is trying to buy the family home from her landlord as housing prices rise around her. At the last moment, her mother says she will not cosign for the loan and Lynette does not qualify on her own. In a last-ditch effort, Lynette sets off on an odyssey of collecting old debts and a miniature crime spree. For readers who like Raymond Chandler, John Banville, and Elmore Leonard."

Chocolate Flowers for that Special Mom!

—Mary Robinson, Vernon Area Public Library, Lincolnshire, IL NoveList read-alike: Winter's Bone by Daniel Woodrell

To LLo ove and TTo o LLoathe oathe A Novel by Martha Waters

You LLo ove M Mee A You Novel by Caroline Kepnes

(Atria Books) "This enemies-to-lovers Regency romance takes Diana, Lady Templeton, and Jeremy, Marquess of Willingham, from engaging in a no-stringsattached affair to their happily ever after. For readers who love Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Jennifer Crusie (contemporary, but witty dialogue and hilarious hijinks.)"

(Random House) "In this, the third installment in the "You" series, Joe Goldberg moves to the cozy island of Bainbridge in the outskirts of Seattle and sets his sights on the town librarian, who becomes his new obsession. For fans of Behind Her Eyes and The Silent Patient."

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—Beth Morrill, Canton Public Library, Canton, CT NoveList read-alike: That's Mental: Painfully Funny Things That Drive Me Crazy About Being Mentally Ill by Amanda Rosenberg

Dial A ffor or A Aunties unties by Jesse Q. Sutanto

—Kathleen Fais, New York Public Library, New York, NY NoveList read-alike: One Good Earl Deserves A Lover by Sarah MacLean

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May 2021


Vintage Collectable Cloisonné While cloisonné is a French word, some historians surmise Egyptians invented the technique around 1800 BC. Cloisonné spread through ancient Mesopotamia and from there into Byzantium. Later it would travel along the Silk Road into Asia. The Chinese may have produced cloisonné as early as the 13th century. The craft became wide-spread a century later, during the Ming Dynasty. Cloisonné did not gain popularity in Japan until the 16th century. Outside of Asia, the art of cloisonné was practiced most notably in Tsarist Russia. The House Of Fabergé created some of today’s most sought-after pieces. The term cloisonné comes from the French word “cloisonner” meaning “to partition or compartmentalize.” Most commonly the technique involves thin strips of metal bent to form the outlines of a particular

design. The metal strips are fastened to the surface of a metal object, where they form compartments. These compartments are then filled with enamel, kiln-fired, and polished. Chinese Cloisonné became popular in Western Europe with the rise of the East India trading companies in the 17th century. Later, when Commodore Perry opened trade with Japan, the Japanese style of cloisonné took hold of the European imagination. The pieces a prospective collector will most often find at an estate sale or antique mall will have originated in China or Japan, most from the 19th century or later. A number of features differentiate Chinese and Japanese Cloisonné. Chinese pieces will generally have a blue enamel coating on the bottom. They will use a border design that resembles an upside down clover leaf.


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Later Chinese pieces often A have cloud-shaped wire cloisonnes scattered throughout larger areas of the design. Marks of origin vary depending on era. A piece made for export from 1897 to 1921 will be marked with “China” (spelling may vary) on its base. Prior to 1897, a simple imperial seal was often used. Post-1921, the mark will read “Made In China”. Later manufacturers would use paper labels. These tend to fall off with the passage of time. Chinese themes include dragons and forms inspired by nature. The base of a Japanese piece may have no enamel on the bottom. A typical Japanese border, if a border is used, consists of a series of small circles. Pieces from Japan were often unmarked, with marks of origin being applied to shipping crates only. If applied, the mark may be painted, pressed, or etched onto the enamel. It might also be in the form of a metal or wire tablet. Motifs common to Japanese pieces are cascading fabrics, flowers such as chrysanthemums, and other nature forms. When choosing a piece of cloisonné, consider the shape of the cloisonnes. Older pieces will have imperfect, handmade cloisonnes. Later machine-made partitions will

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be smooth and perfect with no flattened areas. Older pieces will tend to have deeper colors, more intricate designs, and better craftsmanship. Modern items are often made with lighter, cheaper metals and may use resin instead of enamel. Consider the weight when evaluating a piece. The price of collectable cloisonné varies with age, size, and design. Pieces dating from the Ming Dynasty can sell for tens of thousands of dollars. A pair of Chinese cloisonné vases from the Qing Dynasty (around 1850) recently sold for $5000 on Ebay. Beaded necklaces run from $15 to $300. Musical meditation balls sell for $15 to $30. Quality Japanese vases from the last century generally range from $50 to $500. No matter the era, this beautiful design technique never fails to spark the imagination and add a pop of color and a touch of glamour to any home.

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May 2021



The Bird is Flying Home for the Summer! A Reminder to Parents that Your Child is Evolving Your child left for college in the fall and may have been gone for the past several months with the occasional visit and daily or weekly phone calls. The person that they were in the fall is going to be coming home almost a year older with new sets of experiences, challenges, triumphs, and goals. Your relationship won’t be the same as it was when they left, just as it isn’t

the same as it was when they were three, five, ten, sixteen, and graduating high school. As we grow and learn, our relationships evolve and it is no different with your relationship with your child. You may want to smother them and hope to catch up on all the moments that you missed when they left. You may want to let them settle

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in and come to you when they are ready to talk. No matter your parenting style or your style as a young adult, here are some things that will help make the transition a little easier for both of you. Give them space. Remind them of the house rules, but be flexible as they have been on their own the last several months. However, they need

to understand that it is your family home and you may have some nonnegotiable rules that you may want to remind them of, like put their dishes away, call to let you know if they are not coming home, or help let the dog out. You are not their housekeeper, chef, or personal bank. Let them do their own laundry and close the door if they don’t do it the way you would. Have them be responsible by getting a job. It will give them the pride to make their own spending money. If there is time for a family trip have them help in planning for it. Allow them to take part in some decisionmaking. Take time to get to know the new them. Remember, you taught them well. They understand the values, beliefs, and morals that you have provided them. Understand they are not perfect and they are going to make mistakes, but always let them know that you are there to help them when they need re-directing those sails. Reinforce that mistakes will happen and it’s a part of growing, but be mindful of the life-altering mistakes and choose life lessons wisely. Oh, and don’t forget to have fun with them! Watch a movie, stay up late on the porch talking about dreams and goals, paint, exercise, play a game, and just add some of that good ol’ fashion family time to your summer with your ever-evolving young adult. Have an open mind as they share their college experiences with you. Julie Sorenson LPC

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May 2021


Parenting Boosting Resiliency in Kids

It is often said that “kids are resilient” and they can survive anything. Children may be able to survive tough situations, small or big traumas, and/or stressful events, but what if caregivers and loved ones could help them do more than just survive? Read on for tips on how to build resilient kids and why it matters. Resilience is the process of handling stress and recovering from trauma and adversity… the ability to gain wisdom, confidence, and fortitude from difficult situations as opposed to merely surviving them. A child who survived a traumatic medical crisis may live the rest of their life afraid to get hurt versus a child (with resiliency skills) may grow up to become a doctor helping those in similar situations. Resilience helps children become adults who have the confidence to face difficulties and tackle them building their confidence and building a better world. One step to building resilience is to


let kids experience disappointment. If a child is rescued from feeling disappointment time and time again, they will never learn the skills or confidence to handle adversity when they face it as adults. It is important to learn that sadness, defeat, anxiety and stress won’t last forever. Another step is to validate their distress, anxiety, fears or insecurity. Name the emotion, normalize that humans all feel those emotions at times. Sitting with your child in their emotion doesn’t require “fixing the problem”. When children are emotionally overwhelmed, they are unable to problem solve, not because of their ability but because of the flood going on in their body. Co-regulation will help the emotional flood settle so they can put their thinking hat back on again finding their own solution. Allow children space to take

(reasonable) risks and experience the natural consequences. Encourage kids to try new things, make mistakes, and learn from mistakes. Give them lots of opportunity to make ageappropriate choices. Some examples may include clothing choices or meal choices, etc. If it is frigid out, pants may not be an option but what type of pants can be. In this scenario natural consequence would be level of comfort, fitting in with peers, level of warmth related to the weather. If their choice doesn’t work out, express curiosity about what they liked or didn’t like, what part of their choice worked well or what they might want to do differently next time. Send the message that a choice that doesn’t work out isn’t bad or a failure, it is a time to be curious and learn some-

thing new. Tell stories, watch movies, read books about others who have faced adversity and become stronger because of it. Explore ways that person might have felt along the way and lessons they may have learned because of their journey. Children are not naturally resilient, but their grown-ups can help them build the skills that will last them a lifetime. Meeting adversity with empathy and curiosity will help every time. Be a great role model by doing so with your own stress and helping talk kids through doing the same when they are facing a difficult situation. Christina Thomason, PLLC

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Dawn Edwards is a Fiber Artist. She creates, designs and handcrafts colorful, wearable felt art. Each unique piece is hand-felted and formed, using a variety of methods, many dating back to ancient times, while others use much more modern techniques, with all producing beautiful results. Dawn’s felt creations are often recognized for their unique style and technique. Her use of vibrant colors, textures, and sculptural aspects make her pieces an excellent choice for a wide range of tastes. Her artistic works range from functional to playful, but at the heart of all of her pieces, is an eye for meticulous attention to detail. I met Dawn several years ago when we both worked at the Kalamazoo Gazette. Dawn was part of the bustling classified advertising department typing ads, Jottings and legal

notices. Dawn’s positive, upbeat, attitude, not to mention her constant smile and contagious laugh, drew coworkers to her. As a creative outlet after work, Dawn took classes at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts and other local art venues, in a variety of mediums, including: stained glass and pottery. A friend of hers suggested they take a needle felting class, which eventually led to Nuno felting that is best described as bonding loose fibers, usually wool, into a sheer fabric such as silk gauze, creating a lightweight felt. “This is where I had my light bulb moment, and I found my passion,” says Dawn. “I love making felt hats, because they are functional and sculptural,” explained Dawn. She began felt making 16 years ago and hasn’t looked back since. Felt art has not only brought much joy into her life, it has also created many opportunities. “I have always loved art, but never imagined a career in it,” Dawn exclaimed! Dawn’s felt making workshops have allowed her to fulfill a lifelong dream of being a teacher. She wanted to be sure to convey to readers the importance of trusting your instincts and getting out of your comfort zone, “You never know where each experience in life will lead you”, she said. She has also realized her love of

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travel through agreeing to teach workshops, traveling extensively in the USA and Internationally, to wonderful places like Ireland, Australia, Chile and more. Before felting and teaching workshops, Dawn never even owned a passport. “I’ve met so many amazing people that have been such a blessing, she marveled. On one of her workshop trips to Santiago, where they speak Spanish, Dawn and her host got along famously even though they could only communicate much like a game of charades. The pandemic has forced Dawn to transition her workshops to a virtual format, which has worked quite well. However, Dawn is looking forward to working alongside her students once again when it’s safe to do so. Dawn’s home studio is based in Plainwell, Michigan. Her felt art has appeared in numerous exhibitions, shows, magazines and books. Dawn also is the co-coordinator of the non-profit group, ‘Felt United’, which currently has over 7,000 members.

She is also a member of Signature Artists, a local juried group of professional artists and craftsmen, where her creations are sold through their annual gallery each December. To learn more about Dawn’s art and upcoming workshops, visit her website full of beautiful felt art at feltsoright.com, email dawn@feltsoright.com or send her a message through Facebook. Jackie Merriam Above Image: Dawn’s granddaughter Alicia Lindsey in nuno felt hat by Dawn Edwards Photographer Sallly Leone of Photographic Memories

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Local Authors Release Two New Books this May Local authors Arnold (Arnie) & Deborah (Debby) Johnston, have never let any grass grow under their feet. In addition to their many other literary endeavors, the couple has collaborated on their first children’s book, Mr. Robert Monkey Returns to New York, and Arnie has written a new novel, Swept Away. Mr. Robert Monkey Returns to New York is a story about a little boy, Bobby, and his very best friend, stuffed monkey Mr. Robert. When Mr. Robert gets lost during a family move to New York City, Bobby is devastated. Mr. Robert meets new friends and travels by plane, truck, and backpack as he makes his brave journey back home to be reunited with Bobby, where their fun begins again! Swept Away is a novel about a writer who is facing the loss of his job at a small Pennsylvania university while coping with the aftereffects of a bitter divorce. But when his alma mater, Wayne State University, offers to produce one of his plays, Swept Away, the news seems like the

band. His luck is coming at a price, and he begins to suspect he may be a pawn in a clever murder plot. The raucous and unpredictable adventure unfolds amid Detroit neighborhoods and landmarks, a page-turning story questioning America’s preoccupation with fame and fortune. Arnie realized his love of writing as a child in first grade when he became ill and had to stay home from school for a few days. His mother encouraged him to do something while lying in bed and gave him some paper and a pencil. He wrote a story about



elves, with a spider villain, which he proudly brought to school when he returned to share with his teacher. His teacher was so impressed that she took the story to the teacher in the grade above to have her look it over. Unfortunately, that y e k n o M teacher accused Arnie t Mr. Rober of having help writing, rk o Y w e N o t s which crimped his writn Retur ing excitement for a bit, Ann Percy but couldn’t stop him for and Deborah n sto hn Jo ld Story by Arno ill by Kelly O’Ne long. Illustrations If that teacher had only known that Arnie would go on to become the chairman of the English Department at Western Michigan University (1997-2007), where he solution to all of his problems. Alwas a long-time faculty member and most immediately, Dennis becomes co-founder of the creative writing involved with a beautiful married program, as well as founder of the woman, only to suddenly find himself playwriting program. He has retired mugged on a Detroit street, then from WMU to concentrate full time suspected of killing his lover’s huson writing. His poetry, fiction, non-


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fiction, and translations have appeared widely in literary journals. Arnie is also an accomplished actor-singer, and has performed in well over 100 roles on stage and radio, as well as many concerts. He is presently (April 2-11) acting as Prospero in Shakespeare’s The Tempest at the Civic Theatre. Debby explains that her writing journey

productions and readings, as well as numerous awards and publications. The couple has also

began “when I became envious and suspicious of people proudly showing me their writing journals.” She decided to create her own writing journal by writing 600 words a day, while raising her two sons. She took a few writing courses at Kalamazoo College before WMU began its creative writing program, where she earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing, under the guidance of their wonderful professors, including, Stuart Deibeck, Jamie Gordon and Arnie Johnston, who became her husband. Debby writes and publishes fiction, drama, non-fiction and drama translations. She also loves playwriting. Debby enjoyed sharing her passion for writing as the principal at Maple Street School, a Center for the Arts, in the Kalamazoo Public Schools (1997-2007), before retiring to devote to writing full-time.

As a pair, Arnie & Debby’s plays include well over 300

written, edited and translated several books. “We found early on that we could collaborate. It isn’t easy for most people, and it’s a gift in addition to our gift of writing,” mentions Debby. Arnie and Debby have produced several other local projects, including an audience-interactive holiday show, The Night Before Christmas, for the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre, and over two dozen of their radio dramas have aired on NPR’s affiliate WMUK-FM as part of the Arts Council’s All Ears Theatre series. In addition, they have produced some heart-felt plays that touch upon some very serious subjects, including: Radiation: A Month of Sun-Days, a long one-act focusing on cancer patients undergoing radiation treatments, and Steering Into The Skid, a short play about Alzheimer’s,, which appears in The MemoryCare Plays, an award- winning anthology distributed royalty-free as a teaching tool to Alzheimer’s facilities across the United States. Debby and Arnie’s new children’s book, Mr. Robert Monkey Returns to New York, published by Brandylane Publishers and Arnie’s novel, Swept Away, published by Atmosphere Press, can be purchased locally at Michigan News Agency in downtown Kalamazoo and at other local bookstores, or from online retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound. Jackie Merriam


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Kalamazoo County finalizes purchase of former Rota-Kiwan Boy Scout Camp

Future park will be renamed the Arthur E. & Mildred H. Woollam Nature Preserve Kalamazoo County Administrator Tracie Moored today announced the county has finalized the purchase of the former Rota-Kiwan Boy Scout Camp. The Texas Township camp, which opened in the 1920s, was closed by the Michigan Crossroads Council, Boy Scouts of America in 2019. The county will transform the site into a nature preserve and park. Kalamazoo County Parks has been working with philanthropist John Woollam, the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, the Parks Foundation of Kalamazoo County, and the Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy to purchase and protect the property. The purchase price for the 212 acres was $2 million and was funded entirely through private donations. In recognition of the generous gift given by John Woollam, the park will be named in honor of his parents and

will be called the Arthur E. & Mildred H. Woollam Nature Preserve. “Today is a great day for the residents of Kalamazoo County, conservationists and outdoor enthusiasts from across Michigan,” said Tracy Hall, chair of the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners. “Once open to the public, the Arthur E. & Mildred H. Woollam Nature Preserve will Phone: 269.384.8111 | www.kalcounty.com be a crown jewel in Kalamazoo County and will surely be a draw for nature lovers throughout Michigan. Also, a special thank you to our Parks Director, Dave Rachowicz, who worked so hard to coordinate this possibility. The preserve will be available for public use once Kalamazoo County completes a thorough inspection of all structures, facilities, and utilities. Fundraising efforts also continue with the goal of raising an additional

$1 million to begin the first phase of improvements. Kalamazoo County will begin a planning process soon and will seek public input on the future of the property and facilities. “I want to thank the private donors, including John Woollam, who stepped up to preserve these pristine 212 acres of land for generations to come,” Board Vice Chair, Tami Rey said. “I am glad this site will be preserved for outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy for years to come.” Donald Shepard, CEO of the Michigan Crossroads Council stated, “how delighted Scouting is to see Rota-Kiwan remain a part of the Kalamazoo community fabric and that it’s rich conservation history and natural state will be maintained for future use by the general public and the Scouting community. The Boy Scouts are looking forward to providing years of community service to accommodate the Conservancy’s mission for this iconic property.”

The Arthur E. & Mildred H. Woollam Nature Preserve features 212 acres of nature and shoreline on Bass Lake and Scouters Pond nestled in the heart of Texas Township. The former scout camp facilities offer an exciting opportunity to continue youth group camp activities with Kalamazoo area youth groups. This property is also connected to the 741 acre Al Sabo Land Preserve. Al Sabo was established in the early 1970s by the City of Kalamazoo, to protect the Atwater drinking water wellfield. Al Sabo features hiking trails, mountain bike trails and a paved non-motorized trail. In addition to becoming a County Park, the property will also be protected by a conservation easement in partnership with the Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy to protect the natural property in perpetuity. Office of the Administrator is located at 201 W. Kalamazoo Ave.

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be ART ful “A very little key can open a very heavy door.” Keys, we all have them, use them and need them. For our home, business, vehicle and more and we most likely keep them on a keychain. Did you know that keychains actually date back to 1700 BC and started out as luck tokens for ancient civilizations? Fun facts: souvenir keychains made their debut during the Chicago World Fair in 1893. Car manufacturers in the 50’s offered customized keychains. I remember growing up in the 70’s and 80’s when companies used keychains for advertising purposes. Our home had a respectable amount, which hung on multi key ring hooks by the kitchen phone. Even now they are popular and still utilitarian. The keychain with a single key is a symbol of power and a keychain with many keys represents trust, responsibility and commitment. There is something quite admirable about people who carry lots of keys and the prestigiousness of them. Practical yet sentimental, keychains are small mementos for major mo-

ments in life. Each individual key it holds is a cherished possession with a specific obligation of our dependence at a locked entry point. Our keychains are an extension of ourselves and part of our life story. I am really loving these beads and buttons with tassel keychains. They are so pretty that I want to share with you how you can make your own. Supplies needed: Embroidery Thread . Wax Twine . Split Keyring . Beads . Buttons . Scissors Step 1: Cut a piece of white wax twine about 12 inches long. Bring ends together and loop through the keyring tucking the ends back through the twine loop and pull tight. Step 2: Arrange your beads and 2 hole buttons in the order that you will string them. Thread them using both ends of the twine together. I chose beads and buttons with larger holes for the twine to go through more easily. Step 3: Make a tassel using em

broidery thread. Keep the thread in the original looped form and cut about six inches off one of the ends. Tie the two ends of the wax twine tightly around the center of the embroidery thread. Knot and cut off excess twine. Fold the two sections of thread together and tie the six inch piece you cut off around the folded thread about a half inch down. Wrap it around two or three times and tie into a knot. Lastly, snip the looped ends off the bottom of the embroidery thread, creating the tassel. I used an assortment of new as well as vintage beads and buttons. Sup-

plies can be found at craft stores, antique or second hand shops…family and friends are also great resources. Keys are important and I will leave you with these key words of wisdom from Albert Schweitzer: “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” xo ~Bridget

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My daughter came over a few weeks ago and was showing off her newly manicured nails, which were sparkly and quite impressive. She proudly announced that she did the manicure by herself with Color Street nail strips after attending an online nail party hosted by a friend. What really caught my attention was when she shared the story of the Color Street Nail Directors, mother and daughter duo, Megan and Esther Steensma, who donate all of their commissions to the orphanage in Haiti where Esther once lived and the school she is presently attending - a perfect story fit for Good News Paper! Let me begin by telling you about the awesome Color Street nail strips behind their business. They offer colors and designs that are vibrant, the finish is glossy and they easily adhere to the nail instantly. The base, color and topcoat are all in one strip with the bonus of “no drying time!” These stunning nail polish strips keep their good looks for 10 days & they’re easy to remove with any nail polish remover and are made in the USA. I had the pleasure of interviewing Megan via phone to learn more about her and Esther’s journey into the nail

strip business, which was born simply by a mother’s desire to connect and have fun with her adoptive daughter. Megan learned about the simplicity of applying Color Street nail strips from a friend and became a regular customer. Before long, she realized that she could save money on the products by becoming a nail stylist and came up with the idea to build a business with her daughter from their shared nail strip passion, while giving back by donating commissions to help two organizations that are an important part of her daughter’s life, Children of the Promise Orphanage in Haiti and Tree of Life School in Kalamazoo. “The same nail strip takes on a totally different look on each of us because of our contrasting skin colors, which has opened the lines of communication about skin color and nationality. Who knew that nail polish would allow us to have fun, embrace our nationalities and give back,” said Megan.”


Megan & Esther’s VIP Nail Bar began in December 2019. Just four months later, the Coronavirus pandemic hit, which caused the business to blossom once nail salons were closed due to the executive order in Michigan. Just a year and a half after joining Color Street, the mother daughter team has earned their esteemed title of Color Street Directors. Esther arrived in the United States to her forever home with Megan, her husband Kurt and their two sons, Connor and Kaden on Valentine’s Day in 2018, following a lengthy four year process that included two years of visits to get Esther to her home. At 4 ½ years old, she spoke very little English and was faced with the challenge of adapting to her new surroundings – even carpeting fascinated her because she had never seen it before. Esther began attending school in the fall of 2018 at Tree of Life

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School, a private, all-inclusive Christian school located in Kalamazoo. Three years later, at age 7 1/2, she is speaking and writing English and has discovered a love of reading, while reading at a 5th grade level! Esther enjoys addressing all of the sample envelopes for their Color Street business, is beloved by those attending the online nail parties and enjoys testing the product. Her favorite nail strip is Bloody Gorgeous, because she loves the name, Esther also has a fashion sense all her own, proudly flaunting Santa Claus nail strips at the beginning of spring. If you would like to try Color Street nail strips, while supporting deserving charities, please Contact Megan & Esther’s VIP Nail Bar on Facebook. Megan can also be reached by phone (269) 806-7577, or email megansteensma@gmail.com. Jackie Merriam

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One Potato, Two Potato, Three Potato, Four… Sound familiar? It did to me too, but I can’t exactly remember why. Maybe it was the ditty we used to pick up sides in a sandlot baseball game or maybe it was sung while jumping rope. Be that as it may, I guess you’re expecting this to be about potatoes and you’d be correct. For the most part, potatoes get a bad rap. The fact is they are extremely nutritious, but, if you’re a potato lover, you should probably cut back on how often you eat them. What! How can both be true? Well for starters, they’re a top source of potassium, an essential mineral for heart health. A small potato (about 5 ounces) has almost 25% of the amount you should consume every day. Plus, you get 26% of the recommended amount of vitamin B6 (important for neurological health) along with iron, vitamin C, magnesium, and fiber. It’s no surprise we eat potatoes more than any other vegetable. But there is

a down side: potatoes have a high glycemic index, meaning that they raise blood sugar rapidly after consumption. Some studies have found a link between potatoes and increased risk of cardiovascular disease, excess weight, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes, regardless of how they are cooked. So what’s a person to do? Here are some suggestions. Botanically speaking, potatoes are a vegetable but they are very high in starch which puts them in the carbohydrate category. This means that you should not substitute potatoes for other vegetables, but instead replace rice and bread with potatoes. Further research says that women should not eat more than 4 cups of starchy vegetables per week (for men 5 cups). Other starchy vegetables include corn, green peas, parsnips, and plantains. French fries, the typical sidekick to a burger, tend to be higher in sodium than in non-fried foods. More bad

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news for French fry lovers, a 2017 study of people over 50 found those who ate fries two or three times a week had a 95% increase in early death from any cause. Non-fried potatoes didn’t raise the risk. Still another 2019 analysis found eating fries every day increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 66% and hypertension by 37%. Oven-fried potatoes may be a still healthier bet. It’s really simple. Slice potatoes (preferably with skin on), drizzle them with olive oil and a little salt and bake at 425 degrees for about 25 minutes. For those of you who got air fryers for Christmas, using it for French fries is another good option. We all have heard about toppings for potatoes. Too often we mash them with cream and butter or pile bacon, sour cream, and cheese on baked potatoes. A healthier option is cut a potato in half length wise, drizzle it with olive oil and a favorite herb, and bake it at 400 degrees until almost

done. Then put it under the broiler for a few minutes until brown on top. Using Greek style yogurt instead of butter for mashed potatoes is another suggestion. Did you know that potatoes come in colors? White potatoes have antioxidants which help fight cell damage. But getting a mix of red, purple, and yellow flesh potatoes will give you a greater range of antioxidants. Your local farmers market is a good place to look for colored spuds. (Overheard at a nail salon. “I hate exercise. If God wanted me to bend down, He would have put diamonds on the floor.”) Till next time. Remember, MAKE it a good day and be kind to each other. Ken Dettloff ACE Certified Personal Trainer

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Recipes Show Mom how much you care. Serve her some of her favorite flavors mixed up into a drink as sweet as her!

Mother’s Day comes around just once a year, so it’s important that it’s made special. After all, this is the oner person whose spent your entire childhood making life special for you! This year has been an especially trying one, and with so many families struggling with illness and the uncertainty it brings, this Mother’s Day is even more special than most. For those of us who are blessed by God to still have our mothers walking the earth, this day brings with it many good causes for celebration. And, there’s no better way to celebrate than to lift a glass filled with Mom’s favorite flavors, and toast her on this uplifting day!



Mixology for Mom! I was blessed with a mother who was a teetotaler usually, but on special occasions would develop a desire for something flavorful and sweet. As a child, I recall her enjoying an occasional apricot stone sour, which is made by blending equal parts apricot brandy liqueur with lemon and orange juices. During my teens, Mom switched up to Rose wine, which prompted Dad, on occasion, to bring her one of those stoneware bottles of Lancers Rose from Portugal. Just for the fun of it, I looked it up, and they still sell Lancers Rose, but it no longer comes in that cool, stone bottle.  For that authentic, collector’s stone bottle you’ll have to turn to the secondary market, which has plenty of empty bottles that are available in the Benjamin or lower price range. Mom liked Lancers because she said it tickled her tongue, which is

likely because it is made with red grapes that are fermented apart from their skins at a temperature of approximately 60 degrees. The wine then undergoes a process known as “continuous method” which provides Lancers Rose with its touch of effervescence. Then they add a small quantity of naturally sweet grape juice to it to ensure that sweetness that she also loved. As Mom entered her senior years, her taste for bubbles and sweetness increased, drawing her to champagne, and only one would do: Martini and Rossi Asti Spumante! Not surprising, she liked this champagne alone because it was the only one that didn’t remind her of crushed aspirin! Made with sweet Moscato grapes and apples, melon, peach and grapefruit, its sweet taste and bubbly effervescence was to her a very special treat!

Since Mom would only, on rare occasion, have an occasional drink, I tried to make sure that she had exactly what pleased her, and I hope that you take a page from my handbook, and do the same for your mother, too! No matter what your mother likes to drink, any beverage can be made more special simply by being served in a beautiful or interesting glass. Doing so also shows thoughtfulness and extra attention, and It shows that you know what she really likes, too! Here now are some vibrant and flavor-filled ways to add some extra brightness and cheer to this Mother’s Day, and all recipes come with a low/ no alcohol option in parenthesis (). ENJOY! Story and photos by Laura Kurella


Berry-Thyme Bubbles Berries and champagne is a wonderful classic flavor combination perfect for brunch or celebrations. 1 bottle of champagne (or clear soda) a handful of strawberries 1.5 ounces Saint Germaine 1.5 ounces thyme-infused simple syrup 8 ounces water 1 cup sugar 5-10 sprigs of fresh thyme Begin by making thyme-infused simple syrup by dissolving sugar into water on your stovetop. Once the

sugar dissolves add 5 sprigs of thyme, and allow to barely simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. The longer the better! Pour into a glass jar and allow to cool. (You will have left over syrup for later use.) In a cocktail shaker, muddle 3-4 strawberries, then add Saint Germaine and 1.5 ounces of the simple syrup. Add ice and shake well. Strain into a chilled glass. Top with champagne (or clear soda), garnish with a sprig of thyme, and enjoy! Serves approximately 4-5.

Refreshing flavors that come together in a glass! 1/4 cup sugar 1/4 cup water 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 1 cup cold water 1 cup rosé wine (or sparkling cherry juice) In a small saucepan, combine 1/4 cup of water with sugar. Bring to a boil, and stir to dissolve sugar. Set

aside to let cool. In a quart jar or glass container, combine fresh lemon juice and 1 cup of water then pour in the dissolved sugar water and stir to blend. Refrigerate until cold. Just before serving, combine lemonade mixture with wine (or sparkling cherry juice). Divide between two glasses and serve. Serves: Approximately 2. 


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May 2021




Classic Cheesy Blintzes Batter

3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup milk, skim or favored 2 large egg whites 1 large egg 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt


16 ounces small curd cottage cheese 1 large egg white 2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1/2 cup low-fat sour cream 1/4 cup fruit preserves, applesauce or fresh berries To make batter: Combine all batter ingredients in a blender, food processor or bowl and then whisk until smooth. Coat an 8-inch nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray then heat it over medium heat. Add about 2 tablespoons of batter to the hot pan, tilting and rotating pan so that batter slowly covers the bottom of pan. Cook until the underside is

golden, about 15 to 20 seconds, then slip pancake onto a plate, cooked side down. Place a piece of wax paper on top of pancake and then repeat steps with the remaining batter. To make filling: Remove moisture from the cottage cheese by placing in a fine strainer and pressing with a rubber spatula. Place the cottage cheese in a food processor, blender or bowl along with cream cheese, egg white, sugar, lemon zest and vanilla and blend until smooth.  Turning pancakes so that they are cooked side up, spoon about 2 tablespoons of the filling into the center of each pancake. Fold bottom of pancake up over the filling then fold both sides of the pancake in toward the center to create an envelope. Roll up to completely enclose the filling, forming an envelope-like cylinder.  Wrap, refrigerate or freeze at this point, if storing for gifts or later use. To cook: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish or a baking sheet lightly with nonstick cooking spray, and then

place blintzes seam-side down on prepared bake ware. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center of a blintz feels hot. To serve, top each blintz with sour cream and preserves, applesauce or berries.

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Approximate servings per recipe: 4. Nutrition per serving: Calories 333g; Fat 8g;  Sodium 568 mg; Potassium 34 mg;  Carbohydrates 33g; Fiber 1g; Protein 25g.


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Early/Middle College Summer Camps offer

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Learn how illustration lends to a story. Campers will explore how illustrations can lead to a different conclusion than what is heard. Draw your own images to match the story YOU want to tell!


Kalamazoo Valley’s popular Early/ Middle College Explore Your Future Careers Summer Camps return in July. Designed for students entering 6th, 7th and 8th grade, the camps explore a number of different career paths on one of the college’s four campuses. Camps are led by Kalamazoo Valley instructors. Strict COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

safety protocols will be enforced, including a limited number of campers, daily self-health screenings and the use of face coverings.

1000 WORDS — THE ART OF THE STORY July 12-15 | 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Cost: $75 per camper Location: Center for New Media

July 12-15 | 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Cost: $75 per camper Location: Center for New Media This camp emphasizes creativity as well as the process and craft of writing. You will find inspiration from published authors, unique writing prompts, the world around you, and a virtual trip to the Kalamazoo Valley Museum.


July 12-15 | 1-4 p.m. Location: Center for New Media Campers will have the opportunity to learn to paint and animate digi-

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tally. Artwork will be stored on a flash drive sent home with campers at the conclusion of camp.


July 12-15 | 1-4 p.m. Location: Center for New Media Turn your selfie into a painted stencil. Campers will use Photoshop to capture their image and turn it into a stencil and a painted impression using detailed cardboard cutouts.


July 26-29 | 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Location: Food Innovation Center Campers will explore the greenhouses, plant a salad in a tray to take home, learn about microgreens, see what is in bloom and much more! Register at www.kvcc.edu/earlycollege. Limited scholarships available. Contact Dr. Deborah Coates at dcoates@kvcc.edu for more information.

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May 2021




What’s Buzzin’?

It’s been an unusually warm spring! The first few 70-degree days are upon us, and people I meet are eager to get out and plant some flowers. My spring bulbs are blooming with beautiful pastels, and life is bursting forth. Since I wrote last month about birds, it seems appropriate to pay homage to another spring symbol. No, not l ’amour! That would be for a different publication! Of course, I mean bees. With warmer weather, I am noticing the buzzing of all manner of insects, but the first to draw my attention are bees. Several years ago, I met Veronica Bolhuis from the MSU Extension Kalamazoo County 4-H program. She taught a teacher workshop about native versus non-native bees and how to encourage their survival by building “bee homes.” Her effort opened my eyes to a group of backyard visitors I’d never noticed, and I’ve vowed to make my yard as available to pollinators as possible. Bees are all in the news. Honeybees have had a tough couple of decades. Colony collapse disorder (CCD) decimated many managed populations, causing fears about crop pollination, worldwide food production, and concerns about increased pesticide use in both farmers’ fields and neighborhood backyards. The causes of CCD are complex, with disease, genetic weakness, and habitat destruction all playing roles. Honeybees are one of our oldest immigrant species, brought by colonists to provide honey as a source of sweetness and importantly, wax for candles. Bees are critical to pollinating most of the food we eat, including cherries, blueberries, corn, almonds, and tomatoes. Honeybees will fly up to five miles to find their food - nectar from flowering plants. As generalists, they pollinate many kinds of flowering plants and trees. But they are also the Marie Antoinettes of the insect world. They’re fragile, fussy, and live in a highly-organized caste system with male drones, many thousands of sterile, female worker bees, and the

queen at the top. Bees in the hive live to provide a cushy existence for the queen because, as the only individual capable of producing eggs, the whole operation is in trouble without her efforts. Native bees, on the other hand, are not show ponies. They are the workhorses of pollinators, many capable of flying only 100 meters to find food. They do not produce honey and do not live in hives. They are docile, perhaps because they have no queen and hive to protect, and some species do not even have a stinger. Whereas honeybees are most active on flower species producing many blooms at once, natives go about their business alone, close to their homes, pollinating plants with solitary blossoms. They are especially active in the early spring and the late-flowering seasons. The two groups› lifestyles are so different that they can easily cohabit in an area, so establishing a healthy habitat provides plenty of resources for both natives and honeybees. Native bees frequently nest alone or in small groups, in the ground or small hollowed tubes made from twigs or leaf litter. Females lay eggs, and young bees grow from larvae to pupae and, finally, to adults. They require very little: undisturbed space, a water source, and access to native flowering plants. In return, says a researcher at Cornell University, they are two to three times more efficient than honeybees at moving pollen from one plant to another. Because they visit multiple plants with fewer individual flowers, natives are especially useful in promoting genetic diversity within a given species. Most native bees are generalists, while others, like the squash bee, are specialists, pollinating only squash plants. Bumblebees, the large, voluptuous sort that seem to be as big as a dime, are a particular kind of native bee. They are ground dwellers, making


their homes under piles of wood or leaf litter. They are social, living in small colonies of up to a few hundred, with a dominant queen, like a smaller version of a honeybee hive. However, in late fall, instead of preparing for winter, the entire colony dies, except for the matriarch, who hibernates under-

ground and, in the spring, begins laying eggs to form a new nest. I encourage readers to think about ways to promote all bees - honeybees and natives, by making your living space friendly to these important visitors. Sean Griffin, an MSU graduate student specializing in bees, suggests these steps to promote backyard pollinators. His suggestions include (and I paraphrase):  1.) Mow less – my favorite strategy!   2.) Learn to like clover.   3.) Plant native flower species.   4.) Reduce the use of pesticides.  5.) Provide nesting materials (leaf litter, dry plant material). Please help by providing a healthy habitat for these vital guests! Get the buzz! Cheryl Hach  Retired Science Teacher  Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center

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May 2021



Enjoy KELLOGG Bird Sanctuary Zoom Programs During the Month of May

Learn about the natural world, science careers with Kellogg Biological Statioon researchers Thursday, May 6, 10am-11am – Children ages 9-14 are invited to explore the Lepidopteran world through the May program titled: Where Do Moths Carry Pollen? Learn about how moths interact with their environment, about their important role as pollinators, and how scientists are working to conserve them. The Zoom program allows children to explore with Alice Puchalsky, a Michigan State University graduate

student conducting research at the Kellogg Biological Station. Teachers and families learning from home are encouraged to participate. Registration is required to access the interactive Zoom meeting. Sessions also will be streamed via Facebook Live on the Kellogg Bird Sanctuary page. Register to receive secure meeting details at birdsanctuary@kbs. msu.edu or for questions call (269) 671-2510.

Online Birds and Coffee Chats Wednesday, May 12, 10am on Zoom – Join a group of fellow bird

lovers to share your sightings, ask questions and learn about Warblers, including the Yellow Warbler, Cerulean Warbler and American Redstart, among others. Hosted by W.K. Kellogg Biological Station educators. Next Months program on June 9th will examine grassland birds, including the Northern Bobwhite, Eastern Meadowlark, and Bobolink.

Birds and Coffee chats are free and open to the public, but donations are welcome and registration is required at birdsanctuary@kbs.msu.edu or (269) 671-2510

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Due to Corona virus be sure to call or look online for possible event changes or cancellations.

Saturdays, May 1,8,15,22,29 Kalamazoo Farmers Market 7am – 2pm, New Location: Mayors Riverfront Park

Wednesdays, May 5,12,19 Pick-up Children’s Kit & Have fun at home on FB/YouTube, Richland Library

Sunday, May 2 Virtual Rising Stars Concert: Glenn Zaleski Trio, 4pm Thegilmore.org, 342-1166

Wednesday, May 5,12,19,26 Cruise-In’s, 5-8pm Gilmore Car Museum

Mondays, May 3,10,17,24,31 Cruise-In at Dean’s Ice Cream In Plainwell, 4:30pm - Dusk Monday, May 3 Monthly Teen DIY Project & Biblio Boxes, (6-12th grade) Comstock Library 345-0136,

Thursday, May 6 Where Do Moths Carry Pollen: Children ages 9-14 can learn Science & the natural world 10am, Register: kbs.msu.edu Thursdays, May 6,13,20,27 Carrie reads from a new J Chapter book, 10am, FB/ YouTube, Richland Library

Saturday, May 8 Art Detectives on Zoom For children ages 4-8 The Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan & engage in a sunny art game, 11am Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Saturday, May 8 Mother’s Day Decoupage Flower Pots for Kids on Facebook, kit pick-up starting May 3, pawpaw.lib.mi.us Sunday, May 9 Free admission for Moms (only) 9am – 5pm, Kellogg Bird Sanctuary, Augusta, 671-2510

Monday, May 3 Adult Pop-up Craft: Tissue Paper on Canvas Comstock Library, 345-0136

Thursdays, May 6,13,20,27 Family Story Time (In person, Social distance story time) 10am, Richland Library

Tuesday, May 11 Heartbreak Book Club for Contemporary Romance readers on Zoom 10:30-11:30am pawpaw.lib.mi.us

Monday, May 3 Monthly Youth Craft Kits, Storytime Kits, & Biblio Boxes Comstock Library, 345-0136

Thurs., May 6, 13,20,27 Storytime on Facebook LIVE 10:30am, Comstock Library

Wednesday, May 12 Birds & Coffee chats: Warblers 10am on Zoom, Register: birdsanctuary@kbs.msu.edu

Tuesday, May 4 Artbreak on Zoom: On the Precipice, American Artist, Hughie Lee-Smith, Noon Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Tuesday, May 4 Virtual Memoir Workshop On Zoom, 6:30pm pawpaw.lib.mi.us Tuesday, May 4 Teen Craft To-Go: Hanging Clay Stars, Register ahead Richlanndlibrary.org Tuesdays, May 4,11,18 Video Stories Posted Weekly On FB & YouTube, 10am Richland Community Library

Friday, May 7 Memory Café on Zoom for those with Mild dementia & caregivers, 10:30-Noon pawpaw.lib.mi.us, 657-3800 Friday, May 7 Art Hop – Dwtn. Kalamazoo & Vine Neighborhood, 5-8pm

Wednesday, May 12 Kalamazoo Art League on Zoom: If Frames Could Talk 10am, Kiaarts.org Fri., May 14 – Sat. May 15 Paw Paw District Library Friends Book Sale 9am-4pm, 657-3800

Friday, May 7 State on the Street Live Music: Blue Friday, May 14 Veins, 5pm Music 5:30-8:30pm, State on the Street Live Kalamazoo State Theatre Music: Jazz & Creative Institute’s Student Large Saturdays, May 8, 15,22,29 & Small Ensembles, 5pm Texas Corners Farmers Market Music 5:30-8:30pm 8am-Noon, 375-1591 Kalamazoo State Theatre Saturday, May 8 Virtual Internet Users Group, 10am-Noon, pawpaw.lib.mi.us

Friday, May 14 In Person Teen Advisory Board Meeting, 3pm, Richland Library

Saturdays, May 15, 22,29 Otsego Farmer’s Market 9am-2pm, 112 Kalamazoo St. Sunday, May 16 Virtual Rising Stars Concert: Avery Gagliano, 4pm Thegilmore.org Sunday, May 16 Michigan Made Artisan Market, 11am-4pm, The Bellflower, 4700 W. “D” Ave.

Monday, May 17 Mystery Book Club on Zoom, 4pm, parchmentlibrary.org Tuesday, May 18 ArtBreak: FSA Photographers of the Depression Era, Noon Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Tuesday, May 18 Renovating a KVP Mill Home: Steve Rossio On Zoom, 7pm Parchmentlibrary.org Wednesday, May 19 Book Discussions on Zoom, Molly Gartland, author of The Girl from The Hermitage, Noon Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Wednesdays, May 19, 26 Richland Farmers’ Market 3-6pm, Richland Comm. Ctr. Thursdays, May 20, 27 Plainwell Farmers’ Market 3:30-6:30pm, 554 Allegan St. Thursday, May 20 Adults Books With Friends: News of the World, Register: Richlandlibrary.org, 7pm Thursday, May 20 Parchment Action Team on Zoom: A Community Forum, 7pm, parchmentlibrary.org

Friday, May 21 In Person Teen Book Club: Ms. Marvel by Kamala Khan, 3pm Register: richlandlibrary.org Friday, May 21 Online Art Class: Rainbow TreePainting, Flowers & Butterflies, 10am, FB/YouTube, Richland Library Friday, May 21 State on the Street Live Music: Minny Niiche with special guest Charlie Mench Kalamazoo State Theatre 5pm, music 5:30-8:30pm Saturday, May 22 Family Story Time: Coffee Filter Flowers, 10am Register: richlandlibrary.org

Saturday, May 22 46th Stulberg International Virtual String Competition, Noon, Stulberg.org Sunday, May 23 Stulberg String Virtual Master Classes, 12:30pm, Stulberg.org Monday, May 24 Adult Pick-up Craft: Washi Tape Birdhouse, Register: Comstorcklibrary.org or call 345-0136 Thursday, May 27 WMED Live: A First Decade Celebration, 3:30pm Opening Acts, 4pm Showtime med.wmich.edu/wmedlive2021 Sat., May 29 - Sun., Sept. 12 Exhibit: Giants, Dragons & Unicorns, 373-7990 Kalamazoo Valley Museum

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