I'm a December baby. For those who follow astrology, a Capricorn to be more precise.
Here's hoping you made it through the holidays safe and sound and only a few pounds heavier.
The New Year, fast approaching, obviously calls for a column on the subject. But what's the big deal? At least Christmas brought feasting, drinking and partying; food and warmth and merriment in the middle of winter for pagans and celebration of a savior for Christians.
For those of you not yet hit by the recession and still running the race of keeping up with the Jones' - well, good for you. Personally, I find myself busy these days trying to keep up with the fat man in the red suit - that's right, Santa.
Miles away in a different time zone, where snow buries the yards and Old Man Winter takes up residence for a wintry season, the true spirit of Christmas blossomed in the bosoms of total strangers to the benefit of those close to me - my sister, nephew and brother-in-law.
Have you started the Christmas shopping yet? Or are you one of the ultra efficient types that has everything purchased, wrapped, tagged and ready to go?
It's been less than one month since Oakdale Youth Soccer League wrapped up its 2009 Season. My two-year-old is still running around with pink pom-poms asking, "Today soccer practice?" as her five-year-old brother sits in his room admiring his first trophy.
As some of you may have noticed in my previous column, I slipped in a piece of personal information without too much fanfare. That is, that I am engaged. I'm not one to really share too much of my personal life in my columns because at work I'm about business.
Black Friday has come and gone but it is still a little too early to tell if it can be classified as a success.
The saying around here has been pretty much the same from everyone. What?! How did it become December?
It goes without saying that we should always count our blessings but it's a sad fact that many of us are remiss in our appreciation for those most important in our lives or the advantages we benefit from on a daily basis until a certain time of year duly reminds us.
Now is as good a time as any - actually, probably the best since it's tradition - to take stock of your situation and offer thanks.
November 11; the day flags will fly, government offices and even schools will be closed in observation of Veterans Day. While the observances are being conducted here in the United States, many of those veterans are continuing their journey on our behalf on foreign soil, as well as here on the homefront. Even more ironic is that for the veteran who has returned home and to civilian life, this day may be like every other for them.
I recently took my first trip to Las Vegas. Astonishing, I know. Pretty much everyone has been to Vegas. It's hard to believe that it's taken me this long. I have traveled quite a bit, starting when I was fairly young, but somehow never made it to Vegas.
I'm still at the front desk.
So there's no way to deny it, I am definitely a sports fan(atic).
I could watch Brad Pitt solve a crossword puzzle for three hours.
May always makes me think of Mother's Day and flowers. And this year we added a graduation, planning for a wedding in June, and everything else in between.
As I write this, a named suspect wanted for attempted murder is on-the-lam, in a city that doesn't have any detectives to investigate its cases.
As I write this, a named suspect wanted for attempted murder is on-the-lam in a city that doesn't have any detectives to investigate its cases.
Many of our readers may recall the little yellow VW bug that became former Riverbank News editor John Branch's 'signature' vehicle. We laughed (mostly with him) at the trademark jet engine sound when he fired the bug up, shared our concern when one of the wheels literally fell off as he was turning the corner to come to the Oakdale office – luckily he was close enough to park with three wheels intact – and celebrated with him when the bug went to storage and a newer, more reliable vehicle emerged.
Who knew there would be an adjustment period to living the dream? I certainly didn't. Many of you know I published my first book in December 2006 and it's been a dream of mine for longer than I can remember to support myself solely on my fiction writing income. After many years of incredibly hard work, I managed to make that dream a reality and I left my post at The Leader to live the dream.
As I write this column, I am planning to be off work for an ROTC assignment.
Monday, April 15 did not start for me as it did my friend and running teammate Cathy McClelland or Oakdaleans Vanessa Walton and Tom Burchell, or Jesse Santana of Riverbank. I did not board a motor coach in my sneakers with a race bib pinned to the front of my shirt in anticipation of running the 117th Boston Marathon.
No need to check the calendar and this isn't an April Fool's Day joke – I am just trying to get my column schedule back 'on track' after having been haphazard about it the last couple of months. I know one ran just last week, so forgive me for the back-to-backs.
Twenty years goes faster than you think. Trust me.
More than a week past deadline, I finally have taken a few deep breaths and will try to get this column written. Typically, the 'Marg-Ins' column appears the first Wednesday of the month, which means it is running a week later than normal this time.
The Super Bowl Season is upon us as many of us gather for what is as close to an American holiday as it can get.
Hello, Escalon, Oakdale, and Riverbank. I am the new girl at the Oakdale Leader office. You may have seen my name on a few different articles, pictures, or both in various issues. Or by now, you may have even met me in person.
Happy New Year! We all survived the Mayan calendar apocalypse and the "Fiscal Cliff" – kind of started to remind me of the Y2K phenomenon 13 years ago.