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Could Arkansas 'Go Green?'

February 24, 2014

The past few years have been vitally important for supporters of legalizing marijuana. Both Colorado and Washington passed bills allowing legal recreational marijuana use in 2012 and public approval for legalization jumped above 50 percent in 2013. Sales began Jan. 1 of 2014 in Colorado and are due to start later this year in Washington. Twenty states as well as the District of Columbia already have medical marijuana laws. Alaskan voters will have their say on legalization for recreational use this summer. Oregon voters could also vote on the issue this year.

Valentine's Day stirs memories from childhood

February 18, 2014

My favorite thing about Valentine's Day is the part that involves children.
I know it's supposed to be the "day for lovers" and all that — and the flower shops revel in it, as they should — but the absolutely sweetest part of the holiday is seeing the little kids take pride in their Valentine cards.

Let the notes for the nation ring out true

February 18, 2014

By Lynda Hollenbeck

Last week, in advance of the big game, I noted that I'm not a fan of the Super Bowl. I'm in that minuscule minority of folks who had to check the newspaper to see who was playing. I didn't have a preference on the winner, so I was just as happy with the Seahawks winning as I would have been if the honor had gone to the Broncos.
That being said, I do have a verbal bouquet to pass out to the people who made the decision to ask a trained singer to do the national anthem this year.

Fat-free foods offer healthy choices for snacking, but don't mess with the chips

February 18, 2014

In Kris Elliott's column this week, she offered some healthy tips for Super Bowl snacking.
Among other things, she noted that the Calorie Control Council and Snack food Association predicted that potato chips will account for 11 million pounds of snack food for the game's viewing audience today.
That's an awful lot of potato chips.

Now let's have one more look at that smile

February 18, 2014

Among the many rites of passage that youngsters experience is the one related to teeth.
I'm not talking about routine trips for dental care; I'm referring to braces.
If you're among the fortunate few born with perfectly aligned teeth, say a prayer of thanks. You missed a time that only those of us who have been there and done that can fully understand.
There's the basic discomfort the braces cause, but there's also the embarrassment. There was a long period when I refused to smile. Or if I did allow a grin to form, it happened only behind my hand.

Learning about the birds & bees out of classroom

February 18, 2014

By Lynda Hollenbeck

Sex education at one time was a controversial issue.
Truth be told, in my growing-up years, it was practically non-existent.
When I was in school, what little was said about the facts of life was incorporated into our science and biology classes. But this was a hit-and-miss approach at best. It pretty much was a topic not dwelt on in my childhood and adolescence.

Sugar and spice can turn into an exercise in spunk

January 14, 2014

By Lynda Hollenbeck

Remember the old nursery rhyme about little girls? "Sugar and spice and everything nice ... "
We've had a lot of attention on little girls in the newsroom lately with the arrival of Josh Briggs' and wife Christa's new daughter. We got daily bulletins on Brynlee long before her birth and they have continued since that historic day.
It's been fun because as a mother of a little girl (though she's all grown up now) who has three girls of her own (plus one lone boy) — and as a former little girl myself — I know quite a bit about the species.

Gifts reach their destination thanks to post office crew

January 7, 2014

By:Lynda Hollenbeck
As predicted in a recent column, I was finishing up my Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve.
I don't plan it that way; it just happens. Even though I love her like a sister, I'm nothing like my friend Brenda in this respect because she usually finishes her shopping in time to celebrate the Fourth of July.
If she didn't have so many redeeming qualities, I would hate her, but alas I can't. She's my kindred spirit in most ways, certainly in the way we view life — i.e., sense of humor, etc.

Happy memories warm the heart at Christmastime

January 7, 2014

By:Lynda Hollenbeck
The Christmas season can be counted on to stir up memories.
I'm not alone in this. I think it's probably a pretty universal situation.
When I watch favorite old holiday movies that reflect those earlier times, I do so with more than a few lumps in the throat. But the melancholy reminiscing is tempered by recalling lots of funny things that happened through the years.
I'll never forget the year one of our cats became a Christmas ornament. Literally.
The kids came running to me, yelling "Mom, quick! Come see Leo! He's in the Christmas tree!"

Just don't try to change the unchangeable

January 7, 2014

By: Lynda Hollenbeck
Every year I say I won't do it again.
I won't be that last-minute shopper out there trying to become creative and thoughtful after all the Martha Stewart-like, organized people have picked over the finer-but-cheaper things that would have put a gleam in the eyes of my loved ones.

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