April 20, 2014

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Should the county emergency management agency office duties be a separate office?
Local Columnists

Spend your money in Paulding County
Nancy Whitaker
Wednesday, July 17, 2013 2:18 PM

By Nancy Whitaker

Spend your money in Paulding County

Every single one of us like to get a bargain and some people will drive miles to save a few cents. Recently, I have noticed that gas prices vary, sometimes being cheaper in a bigger city. However, do you want to drive 30 miles to save 2 cents on a gallon of gas?

Price is a major factor in where and when people shop. In economically hard times, we all gravitate to the best bargains, even if it means going out of the county or out of the state to buy something.

Years ago our downtown streets were part of a bustling, thriving community. It was more difficult to travel out of town, so merchandise and supplies were purchased locally. Therefore, the small grocery stores, dress stores, hardware stores, hat shops and many more businesses were flourishing in those earlier days.

Which mouse are you?
Nancy Whitaker
Wednesday, July 17, 2013 2:17 PM

By Nancy Whitaker


I love to think back to a time when life was slower paced, families ate dinner together, kids played outside till the street lights came on and the biggest event around was the county fair.

Then I wonder, “Do I really want to go back to those days of no computers, no cell phones, no McDonald’s or no television? Is life worse now than what it ever was? Or do we just have easier access to information?”

In this modern world, we can see plane crashes as they occur and go directly to scenes of people getting robbed, murdered and raped. We can see and hear the government leaders warring over politics and can see a war as it breaks out.

Years ago, I recall having an old radio that we would sit around and listen to church music or perhaps “The Grand Old Opry.” If we did hear any news, it was generally gotten by Grandma listening in on our party line to other neighbors talking.

Sometimes, I wonder if we are better off not hearing all the bad news and just focusing on simpler things.

Today’s family life can be stressful and we get way too busy to get that special “family time.” Everyone is coming and going different places.

So which lifestyle is best? The slow paced life or life in the busy fast lane?

A story comes to mind about two mice. A country mouse invited his cousin who lived in the city to come visit him. The city mouse was so disappointed with the sparse meal which was nothing more than a few kernels of corn and a couple of dried berries.

“My poor cousin,” said the city mouse, “you hardly have anything to eat! I do believe that an ant could eat better! Please do come to the city and visit me, and I will show you such rich feasts, readily available for the taking.”

So the country mouse left with his city cousin who brought him to a splendid feast in the city’s alley. The country mouse could not believe his eyes. He had never seen so much food in one place. There was bread, cheese, fruit, cereals, and grains of all sorts scattered about in a warm cozy portion of the alley.

The two mice settled down to eat their wonderful dinner, but before they barely took their first bites, a cat approached their dining area. The two mice scampered away and hid in a small uncomfortable hole until the cat left.

Finally, it was quiet, and the unwelcome visitor went to prowl somewhere else. The two mice ventured out of the hole and resumed their abundant feast. Before they could get a proper taste in their mouth, another visitor intruded on their dinner, and the two little mice had to scuttle away quickly.

“Goodbye,” said the country mouse. “You do, indeed, live in a plentiful city, but I am going home where I can enjoy my dinner in peace.”

This story shows the lifestyle of two different mice and their preferences. One mouse did not mind the interruptions when he was eating his bountiful meal, but the other mouse preferred what little he did eat to eat it in peace and quiet.

I love computers, cell phones and McDonald’s. The busy lifestyles have replaced an era of simpler times.

Do you remember when times were quieter and days were more relaxed? Do you think that the information highway we are on is good? Let me know and I’ll give you a Penny For Your Thoughts.

Sleep study is very beneficial
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 1:00 PM

Sleep study is very beneficial

By Tom Melchor

Paulding County Hospital

My name is Tom Melchor and I am a respiratory therapist who was recently diagnosed with severe obstructive sleep apnea. The irony of this diagnosis is that I work with the sleep clinic at Paulding County Hospital. At the urging of my wife I finally had a sleep study that demonstrated I have a disordered sleeping pattern.

I am grateful to the many requests from my wife to have the sleep study. She was always telling me that I snored loudly and would hold my breath to the point that she would wake me up so I would take a breath. The sleep study revealed that I was holding my breath so long that my oxygen saturation would go as low as 67%. The normal oxygen range for sleeping is 94% to 98%, so I was basically suffocating myself when I went to sleep.

Teddy bears live forever in our hearts
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 12:57 PM

Teddy bears live forever in our hearts

Homespun/By Jim Langham

I will never forget my sixth Christmas when a new friend came to visit our house. He has been one continuous friend that I have had for a lifetime. Today, he waits for me in a small study upstairs in our home. Very few people know about him these days, but deep inside he still brings the little kid out of me. Occasionally, I sneak in, hold him, and give him a hug, known only to the heart in my space.

Teddy Bear came to visit me one cold winter night when I was in the first grade. He showed up under an old-fashioned pine needle Christmas tree with his arms open. Those arms are still open to receive the love of a “little boy” some 60 years later.

Microclimates are your friends
Kylee Baumle
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 12:54 PM

In the Garden

By Kylee Baumle

I recently spent a week in San Francisco, touring amazing public and private gardens, as well as seeing the usual tourist hot spots. With Ohio temperatures hovering around the 95-degree mark when I left, the Mediterranean climate of San Francisco was looking mighty fine to me.

As luck would have it, the bay area was experiencing an unusual heat wave and as we roamed around this garden and that one, I felt like I’d jumped from the frying pan into the fire. But unbelievable beauty was all around me, with an abundance of plants that I was unfamiliar with, due in part to San Francisco being blessed with so many microclimates.

Of course I am only 39
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 12:51 PM


By Nancy Whitaker

“Are you really a blonde?”

“Well of course I am.” (Yes, it is my hair and it is blonde.) That is kind of true.

“How old are you?”

“39!” (I was at one time.)

“How much do you weigh?”

“Well, 115 of course.” (I used to be that little.)

Do these kind of answers constitute a little white lie, an exaggeration, stretching the truth, bragging or just innocent answers?

Have you ever heard someone telling about a big fish they caught or a huge deer they bagged? Sometimes, the size of the creatures turn out to be way smaller than what was described. Is that considered a lie, a half truth or wishful thinking?

Now, we all know the story of little George Washington and how he cut down the cherry tree. When asked by his father if he had cut down the tree, young George replied, “I cannot tell a lie. I did indeed chop it down.”

George must have been an honest lad, because he risked getting a spanking to tell the truth. What would I have done? Well, first of all, my mama would have never let me play with an ax or a hatchet.

One thing I think all ladies may lie a little about is how much money they spend when shopping. I tend to round off mine to the nearest lowest dollar amount. Does that make me a liar or am I just trying to hide how much I really spent?

Is it ever really necessary to lie about something? Do you think we can always be truthful about a situation and how should we handle delicate questions without hurting someone’s feelings?

If someone has a new hair do and asks you if you like it, what do you say? What if you simply hate the new hair style, but you really do not want to hurt their feelings? What do you say?

Now, I know if I cook something different and my husband doesn’t really like it, he will say, “Well, it’s okay, but I wouldn’t want to eat it every day.” Hmmmm. Good answer.

When young children try and fix their mom’s breakfast in bed, there may be a piece of burnt toast and a glass of Kool-Aid. Do you pretend it tastes fantastic or what do you say as to not hurt your child’s efforts.

In certain scenarios, is it best to tell a white lie, ignore the subject or tell the truth and risk hurting someone's feelings?

I really don’t like the term “lie.” In fact, I don’t care much for liars. We used to say, “Liar, liar, pants on fire.”

Then there is the tale of Pinocchio, a wooden puppet whose nose grew long each time he told a lie. Is that what we need today?

It seems as if people just up and tell a bold faced lie, the truth will come out sooner or later. However, do you think that some of our discreet answers constitute a “lie?” Or perhaps, do you believe we can give answers in a way to tell the truth, but only half of it?

Have you ever told an untruth about your age or weight? If someone cooks something for you and you do not like it, what do you say? Let me know and I’ll give you a Penny For Your Thoughts.

Be neighborly this July 4th
Wednesday, July 03, 2013 1:19 PM

By Joe Shouse

Be neighborly this July 4th

I have lived in the area for eight months and although I do not live in Paulding County now, I did live here a few years ago and appreciated my time serving the community in various ways. Today, my wife and I are empty nesters living on a cul-de-sac of homes that are basically all alike, at least on the outside. I am convinced that on the inside it is a different story.

I admit, when the semi-truck full of our lifetime collection of stuff, pulled up in front of our house to unload our belongs, the first thing I should have done was visit my new neighbors offering them a hand shake and letting them know what a privilege it is to live next to them. But, I confess, I didn’t do that. No, I wanted to get the computer hooked up, the television dialed in, my clothes in the closet and locate the coffee pot. Those things just seemed important to me at the time.

Passionate or obsessed?
Wednesday, July 03, 2013 1:14 PM


By Kylee Baumle

There was a lively discussion on Facebook last week as several of us watched Nik Wallenda walk that tightrope across the Grand Canyon without a safety net or tether.  A common thought was that you’d have to be a little crazy to do what he did.

I tried to put myself in his position, a little difficult to do, but I considered his family’s legacy and the tradition of making a living by performing stupendous feats.  Few outside his family can truly understand what that is.  To be that passionate about something might border on obsession to some.

More than butter
Saturday, June 29, 2013 2:37 PM

A Penny For Your Thoughts....


This week has been a devastating one for beloved Food Network star, Paula Deen. Personally, I am just sick at the way she has been treated by her employer and her sponsors.

I am sure others may have a different opinion than I do, but when you watch these stars and let them into your your homes everyday, you feel like you get to know them. The same holds true for Deen.

I love her cooking, her Southern friendliness and her rags to riches story. Her wonderful recipes calling for a stick of butter tempts my tastebuds and encourages my creative cooking skills.

The latest saga in Paula Deen’s life stems from a gal who managed one of Paula Deen’s and her brother, Bubba’s, restaurant for five years.

The former employee claims she was subjected to racial slurs, jokes and sexual innuendoes during her five years of employment. At first, the accuser approached the Deen family and said she would settle out of court for a price.

The Deen family did not want to pay out the money and claimed that the accusations were just not true.

However, the accuser did take it to court and Deen was asked questions in her deposition, if she had ever used a racial term at anytime during her life.

Deen replied at one time she did in fact use the derogatory term. She went on to explain, it happened when she was being robbed by a man at gun point. She said she did not promote or stand for racism and she had been raised to tell the truth.

From there, the story became the focus of news reports, talking heads and the social media. Everyone jumped on the bandwagon to voice their opinions.

But then, if it wasn’t bad that Deen was being sued for an alleged racial term, her employer, the Food Network, on which she had a cooking show for the past 12 years, chose not to renew her contract.

The very people she thought were friends and coworkers did not want anything to do with this star who had brought them in a many fans and a lot of dough. (Pun intended.)

Of course, Deen and her two sons, who also have cooking shows, were devastated. Their fortune had not came easy. For years Paula was a single parent and she and her sons made money selling bagged lunches for workers during lunch hours.

Paula’s bagged lunches were so good and tasty that they became popular with the lunch crowd. She became known as The Bag Lady. Paula’s expertise was in fact cooking. She loved cooking the good old southern dishes and all of her recipes contained rich wonderful ingredients.

Paula Deen was on the “Today Show” last Wednesday, sobbing and telling of her honesty and how she had raised her boys the same way. One news outlet asked her, “You could have lied on that deposition and say that you had never used a racial slur. Why didn’t you?”

Deen replied she did not lie and that she has always believed, “If God brings you to it; he will bring you through it.”

In the past few days some of her main sponsors have dropped her products while some are sticking by her side.

A Facebook page was started and is titled “We Support Paula Deen.” Since it started just this week, it has over 500,000 fans who all support the cook, her recipes, her personality, and yes her butter.

Deen has a new cookbook set to come out in October and many of her fans called Amazon or went online to pre-order the book. The book is now climbing up the ladder and will probably be on the bestseller list.

I feel that at one time or another we have all used some derogatory word that in no longer kosher to use. It is too bad how one person can take away your livelihood, your funds, and your self esteem and all you have worked for without at least giving this lady from the south a fair shake.

People can stomp on our flag and bad mouth the government and no one says a thing. However, it is a shame to let one person who has worked hard to get where she is be turned over to a pack of judgmental wolves.

The Bible says, “He who is without sin, let him cast the first stone.”

While we all have different opinions, we are all human. How do you feel about judgmental people? How would you feel if you lost everything you worked for due to a word you might have used 30 years ago?

Let me know and I’ll give you a Penny for Your Thoughts.

Dust in the wind
Wednesday, June 26, 2013 12:58 PM

Dust in the wind

I was randomly surfing the Internet the other day when I came across a question from a major national magazine that stopped me cold, “When cleaning your home, should you vacuum first, then dust, or dust first and then vacuum? Click here to learn the correct method and dispel the myths.”

My brain was having trouble processing this headline. Is this really a major concern? Are people fretting so much over the correct order of cleaning their homes that they need an educational article on the Internet to guide them? Are there folks out there standing, dumbfounded, dust rag in one hand and vacuum in the other, waiting for a green light to proceed appropriately?