By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Purging The Past
Mommy Musings 11-09-22
tham mug

There’s a major purge going on in our office. A sort of “spring cleaning” that’s well overdue, that just happens to be taking place in fall.

I share this now, because as a result, some may see some items offered up for free on social media sites, or in some cases for sale.

Truth be told, we haven’t come across much worth monetary value thus far, however there is a lot of emotion attached to some really random stuff.

Before preceding further, I feel it’s important to share: we are not closing! As a journalist there’s nothing better than dispelling a good rumor, so before our purge gets mistaken for something that it’s not, you heard it here first, the business continues.

Yes, some may have seen the “for sale” sign hanging on the front of our building and yes, the building has been sold. Our publications, however, are still very alive and well, so you may all relax and resume your weekly reading.

Some things from a business vantage point have changed over the past year. It’s all “back of the house” stuff, by and by for the most part from a staff and public standpoint, it all remains the same.

The building, however, and its contents look much different than when I first walked in over 20 (yes 20) years ago. Hence the need for the great purge of 2022.

As I type this, our staff stands strong at a staff number of eight staffers, two cats and two to three dogs on any given day. That’s a stark contrast to the staff of 18-plus, plus a press room out on Hi-Tech Parkway in Oakdale when I first joined the staff.

Keeping in mind this was a time when we still used film for our cameras, the world wide web wasn’t so wide, we still used a phone book and our paper was three sections strong. Newspapers were very much still a “thing” 20 years ago. Society wasn’t receiving breaking news on their phones or learning the latest “big” story on social media.

Yet as the song goes, “times they are a changing,” and with the power of the world wide web and smart phones, they have changed at lightning speeds.

If being completely honest, it was probably a decade ago that many of us in the business began rethinking our careers and discussing what we would do if indeed our doors did close.

Somehow however, by the grace of God and our faithful communities and readers, we are still here and going strong. Personally, I couldn’t be more thrilled as serving these great communities of ours is truly my life’s passion.

Adding the 209 Magazine a few years back, has served as a great way for us to grow our reach and share more of our 209 pride with communities throughout the Central Valley and in many cases beyond. Adding one more layer, the 209 Podcast, recently revamped by myself and colleague Virginia Still is serving to be one more layer of staying relevant with our community.

But back to the purge.

As one might imagine, going from a staff of 18 plus to eight plus pets, over the past 20 years is a significant downsize for a 4,000 square foot building. The clutter is much and the needs are little.

We just simply don’t need 20 plus desks (that may be an exaggeration), filing cabinets, bulletin boards and in boxes for a staff of less than two dozen. Why we waited until now … I truly don’t know, but for a Type A non-hoarder it feels good to release some of this stuff, not to mention see so many happy to come claim it.

We do plan on repurposing some of our “junk” which was all once necessity, but are equally thrilled to have others come by and grab an armful once it’s up for the taking. We’re doing our best to keep it all away from the landfill.

On a side and somewhat selfish note, I must share I woke to sore muscles Monday morning after spending a few hours solo in the office moving desks and consolidating more items to our give away area. Haven’t had that feeling in a minute. I love that feeling. Such a feeling of both accomplishment and ability.

So there’s the story, as well as a dispel to any rumor. We’re still here to serve you all and bring you the best that we can each week. We’re just going to try and do it in a more Zen and dust free space. Cheers to less is more.


Teresa Hammond is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. She may be reached at or by calling 209-847-3021.