Columns

Thu
08
Aug

Prevent illness with vaccines

No one likes getting shots. It especially can be uncomfortable for small children and their parents who bring them to the doctor – at least for a few minutes.  But getting a child properly immunized is one of the most important decisions a parent can make for the safety and welfare of his or her child.
Vaccinations are essential to decreasing the risks of serious diseases and infections. They not only help keep children safer and healthier, but they also help stop the spread of deadly, preventable diseases.

Mon
05
Aug

How much does technology cost?

How much do you spend on technology each month? Technology, and mobile devices in particular, can definitely make your life easier, but they also add to your regular expenses.

Mon
29
Jul

Spouses have a significant benefit with Social Security

Social Security can be an important financial asset for married couples when the time comes to apply for retirement benefits. In many cases, one spouse may have earned significantly more than the other,or have worked for a longer span of years. Or it could be that one spouse stayed home to do the work of raising the children or caring for elderly family members while the other focused on a career.

Mon
29
Jul

Please pardon my legalese

“Your ex parte motion for relief pendente lite is improperly brought and must be dismissed sua sponte but without prejudice.” Huh? Twenty words, six in Latin, completely incomprehensible legalese to all but Latin-speaking lawyers and judges. Surveys have shown that a significant percentage of citizens who have appeared in court, whether on a divorce matter, speeding ticket, or on jury duty, have no idea what just happened. Judge Dennis Duggan of Albany, New York, in a 2006 article entitled, “When Judges Talk, Why No One Listens” lists 100 legal terms that lawyers used in his courtroom over a three-week period. Here are a few: adjudication, consanguinity, putative, decretal, inchoate, verbatim, sequestration, pro se, presumption,prima facie, pro bono and bifurcated.

Mon
29
Jul

Minnesota schools get some payback

When I was a kid, I remember borrowing a little money from my parents who warned me that I would, of course, have to pay that money back. Being a kid and not listening much, I wasn’t too happy when I had to use some birthday money to pay them back-but I certainly learned the lesson.

Thu
25
Jul

Take advantage of parks, trails

Minnesotans have a great love for the outdoors. In the summer, anyone can drive around the neighborhood and see kids playing outside and families enjoying the beautiful weather. Walk past one of Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes and you’ll see boats and jet skis cruising the lake and people of all ages grilling, relaxing and enjoying the beach. The warm summer months allow us to forget about the cold winter that is right around the corner.
Minnesota is home to 76 state parks and recreational areas. They range from the northern tip in Minnesota (Garden Island State Park) to the Iowa border (Lake Louise State Park) from Wisconsin to the Dakotas, and everywhere in between. They feature camping, hiking, canoeing, horseback riding and any number of other activities. They offer something for everybody.
However, it isn’t necessary to travel far to find access to beautiful parks and outdoor recreation. We have a number of options right in our own backyard. Here is a list of parks in our area:

Mon
22
Jul

Reflecting on 78 years of Social Security

There are special moments when people look back and evaluate a life or an era: birthdays, class reunions, holidays, anniversaries. Time is, after all, simply the stringing together of a number of events, some small, others significant. These events can speed by quickly, but each one can have an effect on the greater whole. A lifetime of seemingly mundane events can pass in what seems like the blink of an eye … until one looks back to examine them and realizes just how much has filled the space.

Mon
22
Jul

East Side vacant homes pose perceived safety risk, also offer relief

I have lived in the Dayton’s Bluff neighborhood on the East Side for over three years and one of the first things I noticed was the abundance of vacant and abandoned houses as compared to other neighborhoods. While studying at Metropolitan State University, I wanted to study something that would benefit the community around me. Over the past three years of living in Dayton’s Bluff I have had many emotions and thoughts regarding the abundant vacant homes in the area. I began to wonder what sort of negative impacts on residents these vacant homes may have. For my master’s project I hoped to better understand how vacant homes impact different factors, such as sense of community, place attachment, community involvement, and sense of safety for those who are still living near them.

Thu
18
Jul

Talk to teens about driving — it may be a lifesaver

The ultimate goal when our kids start driving is to ensure their safety and the safety of others. That starts with establishing expectations. The good news is that by setting boundaries, we are making the roads safer for everyone.
Summer is the deadliest time of year for teenage motor vehicle accidents. If they haven’t yet, parents and their teen drivers should discuss safe driving habits such as always wearing a seatbelt, no texting while driving, and never driving while intoxicated.
Research shows teens whose parents set rules are half as likely to get in an accident, according to the the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Reducing accidents not only saves lives but also saves money through reduced insurance costs.

Mon
15
Jul

Culture change: kind of like mosquito bites


Celebrating the conclusion of pre-service training and official inauguration as Peace Corps Volunteers are Amy Baldwin of Chicago, Sinclair Cohen of Walnut Creek, Calif., Rebecca Rowe of Shoreview, Minn., and Abra Sitler of Bramwell, West Virg. (submitted photo)

I have a cousin, Andrea, who was born and raised in California. Her summer visits to Minnesota always resulted in one highly memorable feature: a large quantity of mosquito bites.
Welts from skeeters covered the majority of Andrea’s arms and legs.
A native Minnesotan, I very rarely had one nip from our unofficial “state bird.” So I wondered: what caused the mosquitoes’ great attraction to Andrea? And why did her body react so visibly?
My young mind decided it definitely had something to do with Andrea being from California. She wasn’t a Minnesotan and therefore couldn’t handle our mosquitoes.

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