High school graduation is an exciting time in a young person's life. One chapter of life has ended, excitement for the future is at an all time high and gifts from lost relatives arrive by the truckload. Yet among the excitement and parties, nervousness came over me. Where to go, the four-year universities I was accepted to or Modesto Junior College, which was affordable, but came with a stigma.
Welcome to August and the resumption of school and a somewhat normal routine. Summer, or what months pass for summer vacation here in California, are just about over and like it or not, alarm clocks will soon be back in use.
The unusually mild summer weather (trust me, I'm not complaining at all) has made it seem like we are still waiting for the real summer to hit and it's a little difficult to fathom that classes are about to start. We'll probably get slammed with a week of 110-degree weather sometime in September, just to make ...
Today I cannot help but wonder … have I lost my mind? The good news is, I realize I am not alone and many parents wonder this on a daily basis. The bad news is, I am still really wondering if I am completely nuts.
As July comes to a close and August creeps closer, a number of important calendar events are coming for our household. Most notably, school starts quickly followed by both sons' birthdays but also, my first Silhouette Romantic Suspense novel is coming out and that's very exciting.
You may recall the trip my husband and I took to the northern coast for research two years ago. Well, the information gathered from that trip was for this book. And thus far, the reviews have been very complimentary so I think the authenticity of the location really helped give it an extra ...
The time has come for yet another unforgettable Hammond Family vacation.While I am writing this prior to the vacation happening, there is one thing I am certain of. This vacation will indeed be unforgettable. The location we will travel to this summer is not exotic, tropical or even coastal. This year the Hammond Family is headed to the hip and happening location of … Henderson, Nevada.For those familiar with the area, it is just a short distance outside of Las Vegas. Otherwise known as "Vegas Baby" by my husband and six-year-old son. We have family in Henderson, which is ...
Dear Editor,This past February I was out on a business trip when I got a call from my wife at approximately 9 p.m. She had just gotten a frightening call from her 82-year-old mother who lives alone on Tioga Avenue. She said there was a strange acting, hooded man sitting in a rocking bench on her back patio. I told my wife to call the Sheriff's Department since Tioga Avenue is just outside the city limits and in their jurisdiction. My wife said the Sheriff's Office had already been called and she was on her way ...
It's official. I'm now a Mrs. - for an entire month already.All the details came together for the wedding, which was a beautiful, memorable event - that went by very quickly. We feel blessed to have wonderful friends and family who supported us throughout this whole process.I now have a husband. I've altered my name, moved into a new home - just to name a few changes.There are some things I'm still trying to get used to. During our honeymoon, at this one restaurant while waiting to be seated I had gone to the ladies' room ...
If you have been a regular reader of the paper for any length of time, you are probably familiar with our feature that has been called a number of things, from 'Street Beat' to 'Question of the Week' to our latest moniker 'People Poll.' It typically occupies a space here on the 'Perspective' page but that, too, has changed over the years, from the bottom of the page a decade ago to the more recent right side of the page.
With this week's issue, we suspend the 'People Poll' column as a regular feature. It will appear occasionally, most ...
Words slip and slide. I discovered that a long time ago. In writing essays for high school, papers for college, accounts of trips and adventures, I found the words take over and dictate the story, not the other way around, and the story doesn't turn out the way you intended it even when you sometimes, almost by accident, choose the right word. Much is the same with life itself.
As previously mentioned, you might remember that we purchased our first home last year. It's been about six months now and we're still settling in but we've managed to unpack most of the important boxes even if we aren't entirely sure where everything ended up (I still can't find certain items that once resided in the kitchen).
A couple years ago around this time, I wrote a column about going to see the Sex And The City movie on opening night. I drove three hours to meet up with one of my partner-in-crime girlfriends from college and some of her girlfriends who held a 'Big' bash, complete with cosmopolitans (and champagne and kamikazes and…) and a limo to drive all 10 of us to the theater. It was memorable.
Knowledge is not always power.
May has given way to June and junior high has given way to - yes, that noise was me gasping - having a high school freshman daughter. Of course, she won't actually be considered a freshman until school starts in August but the simple fact of the matter is my daughter is now an eighth grade graduate, has completed her elementary and junior high school years and, I am afraid, the next four years are going to be even more of a blur than the ones since she was sitting on the couch all smiles with her Sesame Street lunch box ...
The school year is winding down. My teenage boys are moving into their junior and sophomore years respectively and my daughter is moving onto kindergarten.
It's hard not to sit back and reflect when everything has gone by in such a blur. This past year my oldest son traveled to New York with his drama club and collected priceless memories to treasure forever; my youngest son played three sports and earned his block "O;" my daughter's speech has improved immeasurably and her self-esteem is soaring.
It's a whole new world out there.
Spring is in the air and for me that means one thing. Not flowers blooming, not complaints of sneezing and watery eyes from allergies, not Easter, not even the Oakdale Rodeo.
It never fails.
Another birthday has gone by and the year is moving along at its normally quick pace. Birthdays have always been a cause for celebration in my life. We are not guaranteed a long life so every year that I reach a new age, I find myself reflecting, feeling very blessed, and thankful that I had a year filled with a lot of laughter and love.
It seems to have all of a sudden hit me that I'm in my mid-50s. With that awareness comes the oh-so-common, "Where did all the time go?" (And there's no mid-life crisis here with plans to go out and buy a corvette and cruise with a young blonde bombshell named Bambi).
Let's just say I have never been that much of a fan of 'reality' TV because in all honesty, it's probably the furthest thing from real life as you can get. Who can be 'natural' when there are lights and cameras tracking your every move?
There comes a time when you just have to part with things.
Whether you are an ardent sports fan or just a casual observer you really can't go wrong taking a few minutes out of your schedule to sit down and watch the Olympic Games. Chances are, you get one of the many channels that are carrying them, with nearly nonstop action all day, depending on where you turn.
It's bedtime at Villa Paloma and as I make my way upstairs after turning off the lights and ensuring doors are locked, comes the time where I need to make my claim on what's left of the real estate on our California king as the TV flickers the nightly news.
All right, I can tell on myself. This column and the ones our reporters periodically provide for this page are due on the Friday before the next Wednesday's paper. Typically, a 5 p.m. Friday deadline, though I have been known to let people email them to me on a Saturday as long as I know it's coming and can still get it proofread in time for the page to be built. But it has been an extremely busy time for me so I gave myself a break and put the deadline off until – yikes! – Monday. Besides, I ...
What did I get for Christmas?
Some people just aren't meant to wear heels.
It's the middle of December and I still have pumpkins on my front doorstep.
I'm taking a chance by voicing an unpopular, politically incorrect position on a contemporary issue, but from me, this shouldn't come as a surprise.
November is such a busy month, leading right up to an equally hectic December, that it literally feels like a lifetime ago I wrote my last column.
Some people may not realize it, but there are actually two ways to get Medicare benefits.