Lifestyle Columns

River City Jules: Life mirrors ‘Hunger Games’

At the urging of my husband, I recently caught up with America and read Suzanne Collins’s “Hunger Games” series. Like a citizen to the reaping, I approached the first book with trepidation. My husband and kids had zipped through them without any problem, but everyone else I knew used ...

Style Off the Cuff: Thrifting For Guys

As I got into the clothing industry, both as a consumer and on the retail and manufacturing sides, it took a serious toll on my finances. I am very interested in quality-fitting and quality-made (particularly USA-made) clothing that is going to last a long time. There are plenty of retailers ...

Garden Calendar: 10 reasons to join Master Gardeners

Douglas County Extension Master Gardeners are accepting applications for this fall’s training class, and area residents are invited to join the community service/education organization. Here are some reasons you might want to become a Master Gardener: Reason 10: Learning new lingo and ...

Boomer Girl Diary: Married to a stubborn Boy Scout

I married a Boy Scout.I don’t mean that figuratively, as in an honest, loyal and trustworthy guy who assists old ladies in crossing the street — although he is certainly all of those things. My spouse is a real Boy Scout — an Eagle Scout, to be exact — who lives and dies by the Boy ...

Faith Forum: What are your favorite religious activities to do over the summer?

The Rev. Paul Gray, senior pastor, New Life in Christ, 619 Vt.:I’m thrilled to say that I have no favorite “religious activities” any time of year! Religion, as I understand it, is any effort to gain or maintain favor with God by my efforts. I hope I never participate in another ...

Behind the Lens: Phone apps don’t lessen journalistic credibility

For anyone who thought the whole funky, camera app craze was just a fad, the April sale of Instagram to Facebook for about a billion smackaroos may suggest otherwise. Plenty have scoffed at the validity of images produced from apps like Instagram or Hipstamatic both as art but also as ethical ...

CBS unleashes summer schedule

In network television, CBS is the top dog. But with “Dogs in the City” (7 p.m., TV-PG), it’s borrowing a series idea from “The Dog Whisperer,” a show that has migrated from National Geographic to Nat Geo Wild. That only goes to prove that in television, sometimes it’s the tail that ...

Fix-It Chick: Remove a stubborn screw

Back in the good old days, it was common practice to coat the threads of a screw with a little beeswax before installing it to facilitate the screw’s removal at a later date.Then and now, with or without beeswax, screws get stuck, and it often takes ingenuity as well as elbow grease to get ...

Remnant Rehab: Cheaply frame fabric art

I love going to estate sales. Not only are there interesting finds and great deals, but often you get a glimpse of the person’s personality and interests by what they’ve accumulated.At an estate sale in Topeka, I found some paintings on fabric that I thought were interesting enough to take ...

As I See Fit: Jump into water workouts

'Tis the season. With Memorial Day upon us, I think we can all safely assume that a last sudden arctic blast will not be hitting us this year. We can pack up our winter clothing and officially make the switch to tank tops and flip-flops. Yes, it’s time. It’s time to welcome the summer ...

River City Jules: Looking back on Memorial Day

Memorial Day, originally called “Decoration Day” (not for its three-day furniture sales but for the decoration of soldiers’ graves), traces its roots back to May 1, 1865, shortly after the end of the Civil War and Lincoln’s subsequent assassination, when recently freed slaves in South ...

Garden Calendar: Manure use may pose problems in the garden

Experienced gardeners and farmers know that healthy soil is the key to healthy plants, and one way to improve soil health is to add nutrient-rich organic matter. One favorite and highly sought-after source of organic matter is animal manure, but if you use it you need to ask questions about it ...

Faith Forum: How will you observe Memorial Day?

Charles Gruber, seeker:In the past I have celebrated Memorial Day in the usual manner: beer, barbecue and good times. Last year was drastically different.Last year I spent the day in shock and grief. My twin brother, at age 66, died on Memorial Day. He served two tours in Vietnam as a copilot ...

River City Jules: Teacher appreciation

Just as Alice Cooper has promised for decades, school is nearly out for summer. For 10 blessed weeks, there will be no hurried mornings, no homework-laden afternoons and no Sunday night dread.As much as my kids look forward to the lazier days of summer, the brave and dedicated souls who ...

Fix-It Chick: How to wash a car

Washing a car may sound like child’s play, but here are a few pointers to help avoid telltale signs of a novice wash job. Start with a good-quality car wash mitt. Unlike old T-shirts, towels and rags, mitts hold lots of water and help pull dirt away from the car surface, reducing the risk of ...

Bite Sighs: Great-grandmother’s catastrophe cake

Even the best chefs have their off days, so an amateur like me shouldn’t be too shocked to have a baking session worthy of the Marquis de Sade now and then. Because of such a session, I’m no longer on speaking terms with prunes. It’s my great-grandma’s fault, really. It all started when ...

Lawrence Laundry: Maxi dresses a summer statement

Imagine wearing a blanket at all times. That’s it: just the softest blanket you could ever touch. Instead of it keeping you warm, though, it keeps you cool. It’s made out of the breeziest fabric known to man. In fact, it’s so breezy, it feels like you’re wearing nothing at all. So I ...

Garden Calendar: Black walnuts, forestry research topics of upcoming workshop

Although a single black walnut tree in an urban yard might seem to have little value for anyone but the squirrels, black walnuts are valuable for both lumber and nut production when properly managed.To share information about black walnut production, the Kansas Chapter of the Walnut Council is ...

Boomer Girl Diary: Logic doesn’t apply to luggage

“Everyone over there wears the same stuff we wear over here,” my husband said. It was his umpteenth attempt to curb my annual pre-vacation shopping spree. “Google pictures from over there and look at what people are wearing,” he continued. “They’re exactly like us.”“That’s not ...