Rabbitbrush Rambler: School days, school days, dear old golden...

This week I have been thinking about rural one-room schoolhouses.

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Movin' On with Nellie: Service dogs come in all shapes and sizes

Today readers might not know that service dogs can be any breed or a trained mutt from the local shelter or a seasoned Service Dog like a previously trained Labrador, for example.

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After the Fact: Smelling the cork

Dimas, my friend in DC, drinks the good stuff. His wine comes in a bottle with a cork and I doubt he ever sipped from a paper cup of Boone’s Farm.

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After the Fact: It’s a circus out there

Back in my day, and probably still, the 4-year plan for a teacher included a “block” of student teaching.

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Movin' On with Nellie: Choose bravery over continued abuse

When I heard her story, I had moved into a 1-bedroom loft after leaving my abusive husband and was working at her telecommunications company to support myself and my toddler.

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Valley Gardening: A bill for the 'Emma's' of the world

What a great fall week! Probably one of the greatest things to happen is that Wolf Creek Ski Area is opening up for the weekend!

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A Trail of Thoughts: Simplicity

I am not a complicated person.

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Still Waters: Conference/family visit are blessings

It’s always a blessing to have family visit,

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Amarah's Corner: Melanie shares painful experience at doctor’s office

I just need to get this off my chest. I went to my doctor because I am in constant pain but the way my doctor talked to me actually made me feel like the common-junkie-down-the-road - with no feelings.

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Native Writes: Sometimes one just must grow up

Just a move across town is complicated, but it can be done.

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Alamosa Landscapes: Bristlecone pines

Did you know that the Rocky Mountain bristlecone pine (Pinus aristata) has a very restricted range?

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: For everything a season…

A very wise fellow, Ben Sira, said it, while imparting deep words of wisdom about 2,100 years ago.

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Valley Gardening: Keep these folks in mind, hearts, prayers

It’s been a rough week in the neighborhood!

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A Trail of Thoughts: Fair?

Giving people the benefit of the doubt.

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Still Waters: Dizzy dame

For two or three weeks I’d been feeling dizzy.

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Amarah's Corner: 10 celebrities who have opened up about addiction

Lady Gaga “I had to stop [smoking pot],” Lady Gaga candidly revealed on the Elvis Duran radio show in November 2016.

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Native Writes: Surviving suicide

I can handle money being spent on working toward solving problems but I can’t handle throwing money at solutions that can only emerge within an individual.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Turn, turn

When I was writing about enjoying autumn foliage last week, I thought it would be nice to take another sightseeing ride about picturesque church buildings that are scattered around the Valley in isolated locations.

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After the Fact: One of those days

My son, John, calls every Sunday morning.

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Valley Gardening: Mum's the word

Life is good in the neighborhood! This fall just keeps on going and going and going—quite beautiful weather, that’s for sure.

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Still Waters: Rock throwing is unacceptable

My faithful companion the police scanner aired a report the other night of a vehicle occupied by several young people who threw rocks at a homeless person asking for money at one of the parking lot entrances to Wal-Mart.

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Amarah's Corner: Nicole shares history, goals for future

My name is Nicole and I’m 40 years old. I have two very beautiful daughters. I am a very proud grandmother of two beautiful girls and a grandson on the way.

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Native Writes: Life’s like that

Trying to come up with a topic for this column is often a gigantic challenge.

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Alamosa Landscapes: Autumn – a landscape mosaic

“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.” Stanley Horowitz

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Golden glow

For many of us, autumn is our favorite season of the year—not too hot, not too cold, just right for taking a ride around our glorious foothills before the last leaves have fallen.

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Valley Gardening: Autumn gardening

What a beautiful fall! And what a wonderful rain on Wednesday evening—unless you have your hay down.

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After the Fact: Tickle the dragon

Every year brings a new and different catalog (plus all of those that have threatened “This May Be Your Last” for years).

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Movin' On with Nellie: The tale of two businesses

After three months, my nurse contacted my son to let him know that I was in danger of breaking a hip, knee or leg with the recliner’s mechanism totally not functional.

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A Trail of Thoughts: Do something

As humans, we have two choices: do nothing or be a part of the solution.

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Still Waters: Not to be forgotten

Today is the national observance of POW/MIA (Prisoners of War/Missing In Action) Recognition Day, not a federal holiday but a national observance.

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Amarah's Corner: 10 Inspirational celebrity addiction recovery stories

1. Martin Sheen Martin Sheen is a recovering alcoholic.

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Letter to the editor: Long-time Valley resident opposed to Village at Wolf Creek

I still get water out of the Rio Grande River, and of course I very strongly oppose the Village at Wolf Creek. There are three large RV parks between the top of Wolf Creek and South Fork.

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Land, Water and People: Photographing the intimate landscape

The fall colors are here and the leaf-peepers, including me, are out in force with their cameras in hand.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: West side story, Part II

Conejos was a busy place in 1863 with its Indian agency, the church’s dedication, stores, wagons passing through from fields to the grist mill and others passing through on their way to new settlements.

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Native Writes: Love doesn't die

Someone once observed that one always remembers, even with a special affection, the neighborhood children one once played with.

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Amarah's Corner: Grandma cares for grandkids whose parents are addicts

Hey, kids like me! I received a letter from a grandmother who is raising her grandchildren who are kids like me and I wanted to share it with you.

114     0

Land, Water and People: Are you up for the black and white challenge?

I stepped out of my truck at a pullout within the Bureau of Land Management’s Rio Grande Natural Area.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Holiday Gift Guide 2017 — Comics

For the next month my column will be devoted to giving you my picks on what 2017 has to offer. First up are some of this year's best comic books.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Tomorrow’s junque

The president returned to the White House from China with the gift of a valuable gold table runner. With his penchant for gilt in his residences, a gold table runner should be just the thing.

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Valley Gardening: Taking care of puppies and business

Another beautiful week! Loved being able to take my 3-week old puppies outside on Thanksgiving.

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After the Fact: Trial and many, many errors

Buying anything that’s not manufactured in the USA requires knowledge of a foreign language or two, or three.

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Being Beautiful: Star of wonder, star of light

“Look at lights! Look at lights!”

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Native Writes: Look on the bright side

The time has come for all of us to give thanks.

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Amarah's Corner: Kids Like Me toy, food, clothing drive underway

Hey, kids like me! I can hardly believe it’s that time of year, again! What time is that? It’s time for our annual Kids Like Me Toy/Food/Warm Clothing Drive!

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Still Waters: Cherish every moment

During this holiday season — and forever — cherish time with those you love.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Putting the humor into the hero

Comics used to be silly. As a child I spent my Saturdays watching the imaginative and outlandish animated adventures of the X-Men, Batman and the Teen Titans.

114     0

Alamosa Trees: Trees are included in revamped zoning code

I am so glad that the City of Alamosa is revamping the zoning code.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Before American turkey dinners

Before supermarkets sold frozen turkey and aluminum roasting pans, the Mayans of Central America were domesticating wild turkeys.

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Valley Gardening: Of plants and Peytons

It continues to be a beautiful fall with next week temperatures in the 50’s and the nights in the balmy 20’s. So nice!

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After the Fact: Thanksgiving

Dinner with the in-laws was always preceded by a lot of heavy-duty, Southern Baptist, down-home blessing and Amen-ing.

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Still Waters: Thankfully speaking

Entering the Thanksgiving holiday, I share some thoughts from folks more profound than I am to remind us to always keep a grateful perspective.

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Being Beautiful: Does anyone have any extra fairy dust?

There are so many things I miss about Thanksgiving now that the light in my little stone cottage on Dykes Chapel Road has dimmed.

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Amarah's Corner: Judge's words provide dose of reality

I found a dose-of-reality for a ‘kids-like-me’ dad a few months ago and I believe it should be shared again.

117     0

Native Writes: Run, women, run

If reincarnation exists, I know I lived in the Victorian and Late Victorian eras, when too much was not enough.

126     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: It had a name and it made joy

Last week marked the end of an era for Colorado’s music scene. After 11 years of performing wondrous melodies, Paper Bird announced their farewell tour.

131     0

Land, Water and People: Rediscovering the Needles

It was quiet. Really, really quiet.

131     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Navajo neighbors

Readers might have noticed a recent newspaper item about The Navajo Nation’s purchase of Wolf Springs Ranch in the Wet Mountain Valley, across the Sangre de Cristo Range from our San Luis Valley.

132     0

Valley Gardening: Hemp, hemp hooray

Life is good in the neighborhood! You all know how much I love Peyton Sanchez. He’s my absolute hero!

138     0

After the Fact: Veterans’ Day

Today is Veterans’ Day. So far, I’ve started writing this column about four times.

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Still Waters: Honoring a hero

It’s just a little spot by the highway at the edge of a small town with a gas station on one side of the road and a post office on the other.

147     0

Being Beautiful: “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend…”

Well, that’s according to Groucho Marks. This much I know: the books we read while children stay with us our whole lives.

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Amarah's Corner: Pianist shares personal journey

My friend, Mr. Randy Macy, is the most awesome pianist, ever. I met him when I sang in the off Broadway play, “Opening Night” written by another special friend, Corliss Taylor Dunn!

121     0

Native Writes: Gun control is a family matter

We send our children to school believing it is a safe place and then we go to worship in a church, which also must be safe, right?

122     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: It isn't trivial

If you’ve read this column at least once before then it should come as no surprise that I’m a big nerd.

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Alamosa Trees: Have you ever barked up the wrong tree?

As I write it is very windy outside so I wandered my mind, rather than outdoors Alamosa, looking for a column idea.

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Guest Opinion: A proactive approach to forest management

This summer, scenes of catastrophic wildfires in the West dominated the news. While wildfires are not new to those of us living in Western states, these recent fires have once more triggered important conversations about the federal government’s response to these disasters and its overall forest management strategy, or lack thereof.

132     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Japanese settlement

At present, the San Luis Valley’s diverse cultural traditions are receiving increasing appreciation, thanks to this region’s Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area.

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Valley Gardening: Gardening in November

Every Thursday afternoon, for about two years now (if my memory serves me right), Jenny Kroschel has come to the Green Spot to hang out, and sometimes we even get some work done.

129     0

After the Fact: Home grown

Boys eat a lot. Boys eat prodigious amounts of food from dawn ‘til past dark.

121     0

Being Beautiful: Jesus loves me, and so did she

Birthdays are the best!

120     0

Still Waters: Drive through etiquette

It had been a long, tough week, I had been struggling with a cold, and a strawberry smoothie from McDonald’s sounded good to me.

113     0

Amarah's Corner: Randy Macy shares why music is important

Hey, kids like me! My friend, Mr. Randy Macy, is the most awesome pianist, ever!

121     0

Native Writes: My peaceful place

I was gratified to see that there will be a new office – with restrooms – at the Alamosa Cemetery.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Murder on the mind

As a genre, true crime has been around for at least a century. Yet within the past few years there has been a surge of the gruesome and grotesque tales across all media.

129     0

Land, Water and People: Deciphering the draft forest plan

The Rio Grande National Forest released its draft land management plan and environmental impact statement at the end of September.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Playing safe

When the World Series started this year, I was off base.

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Valley Gardening: B&B is not bed and breakfast for trees

What’s great about this small town is the people!

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After the Fact: Untimely ends

They say there are four seasons in the San Luis Valley: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Winter and Road Construction.

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Being Beautiful: Bubble Gum and Tootsie Rolls for Wonder Woman and the Wolf Man

My mind is a cauldron of memories bubbling over, especially appropriate for Halloween.

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Still Waters: Letter from Clem

(Ya mite wanna reed this won owt lowd.)

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Amarah's Corner: Pianist Randy Macy—Music nurtures the spirit

Hey, kids like me! My friend, Mr. Randy Macy, is the most awesome pianist, ever, and I met him when I got to sing in the off Broadway play, “Opening Night” written by another special friend, Corliss Taylor Dunn!

129     0

Native Writes: Conspiracies and facts

Seeking information about a particular “hot button” item, I received an introduction on how conspiracy theories are created.

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Alamosa Trees: Do trees sleep and hibernates?

We’re entering into the darker and colder time of the year in Alamosa. I know I’ve started pulling out warmer clothing and want to linger longer in bed in the morning greyness.

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Spooky on the small screen

Christmas has the classic flicks, Thanksgiving has football and Halloween has horror movies. Yet why limit yourself next week to only watching theatrical releases?

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: La Veta Pass

The first time I crossed La Veta Pass in 1959, I was riding on a bus that wheezed to a stop at a rustic, two-story bus station-restroom-café on top of the pass before continuing down Sangre de Cristo Creek to the San Luis Valley.

114     0

Valley Gardening: If I could vote on these ballot issues …

I’m a little nervous this week, maybe even a LOT nervous. I’m going to write about a couple of the election items for Alamosa.

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After the Fact: On my way to the forum

Over coffee the other morning at the Alamosa Sr. Center, the Golden Girls were discussing writing their “memoirs.”

116     0

Still Waters: Reputations: Fragile, handle with care

A reputation can be a lifetime in the making and a few moments in the breaking.

114     0

Being Beautiful: The price of education and the cost of not learning

My daddy was the eldest of 13 siblings born far in the backwoods of Mississippi with a hard life to navigate from his earliest days.

128     0

Amarah's Corner: Symposium provided great information

Hey, kids like me! I attended the 2017 Neonatal Substance Exposure Awareness Symposium IV in Alamosa last Thursday and Friday.

127     0

Native Writes: The truth will keep us free

Someone recently asked me what I would do if the government subpoenaed my emails.

167     0

Land, Water and People: Fall colors—New England versus Colorado

The reflection of the brilliant ruby red maple and wooden covered bridge shimmered in the smooth, slow moving river glide.

174     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Abolish the ceiling

The Harvey Weinstein news is only the latest scandal to highlight the long history of toxic masculinity and gender inequality in entertainment.

127     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Sangre de Cristo Pass

After writing about Robidoux/Mosca Pass last week, I’ll move south today to Sangre de Cristo Pass on the eastern flank of the Blanca Peak massif.

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Valley Gardening: 'Hops' to it and get involved

Last week I mentioned that we would be having a small bake sale, spaghetti dinner (Jaiden Rogers) ticket sales and free coffee and apple cider today from 10 to 2.

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After the Fact: The joys of childhood

My young friend, Teri Leep, just had her tonsils removed.

147     0

Still Waters: Thank you, Calvary Bible Chapel ‘girls’

Thirty years. That’s how long the ladies at Calvary Bible Chapel have been hosting women’s conferences in their Alamosa church.

144     0

Being Beautiful: How are you today? I really want to know…

We need more simple acts of random kindness.

155     0

Native Writes: Awakening memories

Who’s the oldest “old timer?”

175     0

Amarah's Corner: Mom wishes she could turn clock back

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction. Today is the 10th story.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Time is fleeting

As an introvert who is content with staying in and reading all day I sometimes struggle a little with making social plans.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Mosca Pass or Robidoux Pass? Part II

Throughout the 1830s and in the early 1840s, travel increased through this pass. What Spanish-speaking settlers had long called “Mosca,” but traders and trappers began to call it “Robidoux Pass” as they were using it to access Fort Uncompahgre and others places farther west.

143     0

Valley Gardening: Plants and people benefit from being outside

What a beautiful fall! I’m still working on planting shrubs into Mom’s Garden and also at Society Hall, so the moisture has been absolutely wonderful.

177     0

After the Fact: Good old golden school days

Spell-check, that computer generated censor of words it doesn’t recognize, consistently tells me that “serendipitously” is NOT a word.

181     0

Being Beautiful: With liberty and justice for all

“O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave…”

196     0

Still Waters: Sweet dreams, Boca Burger

I had already told my coworker Julia I would take the male dog she had rescued from an abusive situation but could not keep because her grandson, who lived with her, was allergic.

160     0

Native Writes: Thanks for the memories

As I grow older, I cherish more the times spent in the Alamosa schools, first with my sons and now with my grandchildren.

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Amarah's Corner: Please attend drug awareness symposium

Today would have been the 10th story with Christina, but something really important is happening in a couple of weeks and I wanted to tell you about it ahead of time in hopes you will attend!

131     0

Land, Water and People: A cold night in the mountains

“Geez, this is heavy! What do you have in your pack Miiiike?” asked my friend with his southern drawl.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Twitter doesn’t understand itself

Last week Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey revealed that their service would unshackle itself from the iconic 140-character message limit to 280 characters.

153     0

Alamosa Flowers: Where do florist flowers come from?

Our recent low temperatures and high winds have mostly wiped out the flowers in my yard.

181     0

Native Writes: Mosca Pass or Robidoux Pass? Part 1

Some historians have suggested that Mosca Pass’s Spanish name honors an explorer in Texas, Luis de Moscoso Alvarado of the 1500s.

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Valley Gardening: Keep the blooms, not the bugs

Where should I start? I guess I need to talk a little bit about the budget meeting the City of Alamosa held on this past Wednesday.

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After the Fact: Flight plans

My grandmother was a world-class backseat driver.

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Still Waters: Jamie and Joleen lead the way

Jamie Dominguez was fed up with the drug use in his community, so he did something about it.

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Being Beautiful: Tales of Ferris wheels, funnel cakes, and first cousins galore

The fair is coming to town!

161     0

Native Writes: The NFL protest isn't worth a war

I love watching football, not just any football, but the Broncos, Maroons and all SLV grid teams, along with the ASU Grizzlies.

141     0

Amarah's Corner: Amarah shares Kendra's story

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction.

155     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Fall TV doesn’t need to be good

35, 52 and 36. Those are the respective scores for television shows “Marvel’s Inhumans,” “Me, Myself and I,” and “The Orville” on Metacritic, which averages a bevy of critic’s reviews and places them on a 100-point scale.

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Rabbitbrush Rambler: Crossing Marshall Pass

With National Public Lands Day coming up on September 29, this weekend will be a good time to pause and appreciate our national forests along with our other public lands.

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Valley Gardening: Spray weeds now for a better spring

Well…the Raise the Roof Celebration last Saturday at Society Hall was wonderful, absolutely great and fun, and well organized—if I do say so myself.

171     0

After the Fact: On the back of the milk carton

With little to no interest in genealogy, I attempted an artistic interpretation of my family tree for my infant (then) daughter’s baby book.

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Still Waters: Family, friends and neighbors

I had the rare and wonderful opportunity to go to Denver last weekend to be with my two sisters.

181     0

Being Beautiful: Tethering hot air balloons, loosely

There has always been more than a little bit of Peter Pan in me.

172     0

Land, Water and People: Savoring the journey

Clusters of vibrant red berries contrasted boldly with yellowing leaves below a skeletal ceiling of spruce branches.

167     0

Native Writes: Organizing by the book

Sometimes it’s best to remain ignorant.

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Amarah's Corner: Mom: I pray my kids learn from my mistakes

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction. Today is the 8th story:

168     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: How the realest TV show features a cartoon horse

This has been the fourth summer in a row where I’ve watched a cartoon about a horse that for roughly six hours sends me on a rollercoaster of emotions. Each season I brace for melancholic impact and by the end I’m glad I took the journey.

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Alamosa Trees: Forest bathing

I had never heard the term ‘forest bathing’ until I stood in the old growth forest in MacMillan Park on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada last month.

169     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Harvest time

Several years ago in Jordan I saw a man winnowing grain as people did in ancient times.

176     0

Valley Gardening: Grateful for changing seasons

Fall is definitely coming—YAHOO! I can’t even imagine living in an area where it never freezes.

152     0

After the Fact: Abracadabra

It was advertised as “Non-Hypnotic Past-Life Regression.”

169     0

Being Beautiful: To persist or to aggravate?

Southerners know it all too well, the lush green vine that coils, winds, and climbs over everything in its path from trees to houses--Kudzu.

167     0

Native Writes: Life’s lessons

My life is a process of constant education. I learn something new every day and sometimes two or three times a day.

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Amarah's Corner: Mom: Addiction hurts everyone

I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction. Today is the 7th story:

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Geiger's Culture Counter: 13 down, 41 to go

Since graduating high school I’ve tried to summit at least one 14,000-foot mountain in Colorado, also known as a 14er, once per summer.

174     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Ag education

Although I have always been a town-dweller, I learn a lot by reading articles in the Courier about urban gardening projects in our local schools and communities and also the interesting articles written by our extension agents.

156     0

After the Fact: Observing holidays

When there are younger brothers or sisters in a family, you get to practice essential parenting skills long before you actually become a parent.

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Valley Gardening: Tough plants — and people — always come back

Wow! How did we ever even live without the Internet? And no phone service?

208     0

Being Beautiful: Heaven must surely have a special place for dogs

All dogs go to Heaven, and you will never convince me otherwise.

208     0

Still Waters: Prayer for my sister

Please bless my big sister Beth today on her birthday.

196     0

Amarah's Corner: Mom shares dreams of a better life

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction.

186     0

Native Writes: God save us all

I was fairly young when the Korean War took place; in fact, I was unaware until I became a college student that the war really never ended.

215     0

Land, Water and People: Kudos to the Saguache-Upper Rio Grande Resource Advisory Committee

Finally! Finally, the stars aligned, the moon passed in front of the sun, and the Saguache-Upper Rio Grande Resource Advisory Committee met to recommend a half million dollars’ worth of projects that will benefit the Rio Grande, San Juan and San Isabel National Forests.

173     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: The gang’s all here

Nostalgia-fueled executives are creating reboots, remakes and reunion shows left and right.

215     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: After Labor Day

After the summer fun, it’s time to get back to school or to get back to work. Or to try to find a job

197     0

Valley Gardening: Plants outwitting people & vice versa

Life is good in the neighborhood! I had a customer come in this week looking for a concrete angel.

189     0

After the Fact: Unconventional wisdom

Good writing is like great art: there are some masterpieces that simply take your breath away. It resonates with something that’s personal to you and may be entirely lost on someone else.

211     0

Still Waters: Chevy Prizm, RIP

I am the stereotypical woman when it comes to cars.

247     0

Being Beautiful: Walking a mile in someone else’s shoes

The peacock rests in shards of broken glass.

230     0

Native Writes: Good people everywhere

In the course of nearly 50 years in journalism, I have seen and covered so many instances of humans’ inhumanity to fellow humans, my ability to trust has been damaged, at best.

213     0

Amarah's Corner: Mom shares painful story

I was privileged to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail about their struggle with addiction.

242     0

'Half-Life' is dead, long live 'Half-Life'

A decade of waiting is finally over.

222     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Natural events

Last week when eclipse-chasers were zooming down the highway, I hoped that a few slowed down long enough to notice the wildflowers.

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Valley Gardening: Great time of year to spray weeds

Life is good! Be thankful for what you have, stop what you are doing and sit on the floor with your grandchild, or go see an older neighbor, or go out to the nursing home—no doubt you will know someone who would appreciate a visit. Just do it!

221     0

After the Fact: Getting around to it

“When I retire, I’m going to” (fill in the blanks here). We spend more time planning for the future than actually doing anything with it when it arrives.

237     0

Still Waters: Too many rocks

“Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone …” (John 8:7, NIV) There seem to be a lot of people in this country right now with rocks in their pockets.

248     0

Amarah's Corner: Janee shares story of struggle, hope

I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail because of their struggle with addiction. Today is the fifth story:

177     0

Native Writes: Finding myself

The young woman was sitting in a yoga position on a mountain rock as I approached.

219     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Don’t be afraid to condemn

Recently Trump was hesitant to denounce neo-Nazis and white supremacists. However, the president shouldn’t have to second-guess if he should say that Nazis aren’t good, neo- or otherwise.

235     0

Land, Water and People: The art of strolling

The pullout at the Crater Lake trailhead was full, so I drove on, turned around at a wide spot and drove back past the trailhead to another parking area near Elwood Cabin.

212     0

Guest Opinion: Legislator Valdez welcomes state fair

With less than one week to the opening of the 145th Colorado State Fair in Pueblo, we look forward to the tourists that are attracted to our city, not only from within our state but, from all over the US to participate in the agricultural and cultural events and programs.

257     0

Guest Opinion: County jail conditions are shocking

It is often said that you can judge a society by how it treats its prisoners. We are failing that test in Alamosa County, despite the concerted efforts of Sheriff Robert Jackson and county leaders.

293     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Sheep in national forest

In times gone by, when I was hiking or 4-wheeling near the Continental Divide, I sometimes saw flocks of sheep with herders and dogs or a horseman bringing supplies up to a camp.

209     0

Still Waters: Happy 65th anniversary, Mamma and Daddy

She was invited to a welcome home party for a college kid she didn’t know. Since she didn’t have other plans that night, Teresa Arlene Pointer went to the surprise party

223     0

K.C. at Bat: Must see for small businesses

Every small business owner in the San Luis Valley needs to see Creede Repertory Theatre’s latest production “General Store.”

219     0

Valley Gardening: Low EIQ is good for gardens

Where in the heck has this summer gone? Before we turn around, it will be Labor Day and the hundreds of cars for the Early Iron show will be cruising through town—less than two weeks away!

196     0

After the Fact: To sea food or to not sea food

Have I lately mentioned my granddaughter, Jordyn the Gypsy?

243     0

Movin' On with Nellie: It’s national soft ice cream day, today

According to the Internet it is national soft ice cream day today.

171     0

Being Beautiful: Turn up the radio and turn down memory lane

What has the magic power to transport us through space and time back to a moment, whether happy or sad?

234     0

Guest Opinion: Celebrating World Breastfeeding Month—One woman's heartfelt story

A breastfeeding journey brings many unforeseen circumstances.

221     0

Amarah's Corner: Amarah shares Renee's story of addiction

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers who are in Alamosa County Jail because of their struggle with addiction.

192     0

Native Writes: It's not a matter of black and white

I am constantly amazed at the attempts of well-meaning persons to revise history.

235     0

Alamosa Trees: How to kill a tree

Usually, we don’t set out to kill a tree unless we need it removed for a specific reason.

289     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: We need less streaming sites, not more

It’s not news that many people my age prefer streaming shows and movies to watching live television.

212     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Counting sheep

Looking at some of today’s communities, it’s hard to imagine the influence that sheep once had on their economies a century ago.

233     0

Valley Gardening: Good night, gentle soul

Life is good…and so fragile.

259     0

After the Fact: The last place you look

Dr. Grigsby is a terrific cardiologist at San Luis Valley Health, even if he seldom agrees with my own diagnoses.

270     0

Still Waters: Local couple change immigrant’s life

I will share more of Maria Matias’ story when I have time to do it justice, but today I want to acknowledge the influence a local couple had on her life.

235     0

Being Beautiful: My fountain of youth has run dry

Mark Twain might have said it best: “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” Well, Mark, lately it’s beginning to matter.

245     0

Native Writes: Using up the roll

The death of Glen Campbell from Alzheimer’s brought a message of mortality for many people who are aging.

286     0

Amarah's Corner: Mom in jail shares her story, advice

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers who are in Alamosa County Jail because of their struggle with addiction. Today is the third story:

257     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Why I'm thankful for the wacky and weird

Not everything needs to be a prestige television show like “Mad Men” or “Breaking Bad.” Not everything should be. I may lose my sanity if that was the case.

249     0

Land, Water and People: The perpetual spruce budworm outbreak

It’s hard to miss the impacts of the feeding frenzy currently occurring on many of the coniferous trees in the mid-elevations of the Rio Grande National Forest.

240     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Storing railcars

While some rail fans were visiting this summer, they asked me about a long string of railroad cars they had passed along U.S. 160 in Rio Grande County. I had to admit that I knew little about them, although I frequently pass them, so I’ll share a little o

265     0

Guest opinion: Mom brings awareness to sepsis threat

My name is Shawna Manzanares. With school just around the corner, and September being the official month for “Sepsis Awareness,” I would like to bring a bit of knowledge and awareness to the community about sepsis and what devastation it can and does caus

270     0

Valley Gardening: Lift up 4-H 'pool,' take down weeds

Life is good in the neighborhood! Mom’s Garden continues to take shape.

273     0

After the Fact: Hi-Yo, sister, away!

According to some studies, people in a group or in a family will accept roles either ascribed to them or fitting into a situational experience.

314     0

Still Waters: ‘Strange inheritance’ might reveal treasure – or not

My big sister and her husband turned me on to “Strange Inheritance,” a television show focusing on exactly what it says, “strange inheritances.”

275     0

Being Beautiful: Homes are where the heart is

I have always heard you can never go home again. Well, that’s simply not true, although I do understand the more subtle meaning.

251     0

Native Writes: A little old lady

A photo taken at a very happy reunion recently taught me that I may be in line for a new career.

298     0

Amarah's Corner: Jail inmate shares her story

Two of my favorite quotes are from French author Alexandre Dumas, 1844, in The Count of Monte Cristo

244     0

Alamosa Flowers: Herb harvesting

The late July rain has made our yard green and lush. I’m spending little time watering and more time weeding! But weeding isn’t the only happening. It’s herb harvest time.

232     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Farewell Adobe Flash

Last week software company Adobe announced that they’d be killing off their famous animation product Flash. While I’m glad to no longer see that annoying red square asked to be updated when it was just updated, Flash had an enormous impact on internet cul

284     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Governor McIntire

It’s Colorado Day and what better time is there to learn something about one of our state’s governors with a link to the San Luis Valley.

236     0

Valley Gardening: It's looking good in Mom's Garden

Already the end of July—Yikes! Where has this summer gone?

229     0

After the Fact: Kindergarten was better

It wouldn’t have the same barb it once had to be told “Your momma wears Army boots!”

282     0

Movin' On with Nellie: A glance at ADA Service Animal requirements

Strangers and friends sometimes stop me with my service animal/dog and ask how one trains and gets a service animal certified.

261     0

Still Waters: Inventions of the bizarre nature

I really shouldn’t be saying anything, because the news is embargoed until Wednesday, August 2, but I’m going to let the salt out of the shaker

294     0

Being Beautiful: The past is never dead; it isn’t even past

When I was a little boy, Mama told me stories of sights and wonders she had seen.

263     0

Native Writes: A demanding relationship

I just discovered I am in a long-term relationship created online.

290     0

Amarah's Corner: Amarah shares story from inmate with addiction

Hey, kids like me! I had the privilege to ask questions of some mothers in Alamosa County Jail who are there because of their struggle with addiction. Today

221     0

Land, Water and People: High Country Journal 2017—Backpacking Canyon Verde

The flash of lightning penetrated the walls of my tent and closed eyelids followed by a loud clap of thunder that rolled on and on echoing between the canyon walls. Then the rain started.

257     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Teaching with television

Educational television has existed long before I was born.

288     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Nearby Chimney Rock National Monument

Several years ago, some friends in Alamosa and I enjoyed a one-day outing over and back across Wolf Creek Pass to visit Chimney Rock.

267     0

Valley Gardening: Beware of loopers and looters

Life is good in the neighborhood! Our tire planters are looking great—and they don’t even break if someone backs into them

257     0

After the Fact: Campaign promises

My life is filled with controversy: should I have my oatmeal with or without the banana on top this morning?

280     0

Still Waters: Need a new name?

“Do I have to put my real last name?” the young man asked as I came to him in the row of children whose names I was taking down for a photo.

293     0

Being Beautiful: Remembering screen doors left unlatched

It’s hot as Hades in Mississippi and that’s even in the shade with a pitcher of ice cold lemonade.

205     0

Native Writes: Saving the memories

Talking with an old friend recently, I was reminded of the many unique places in our San Luis Valley and I had to admit I have probably been to most of them, but revisited few.

258     0

Amarah's Corner: Poem shared about heroin addiction

Hey kids like me, I found this story about the heartbreaking reality of addiction and wanted to share it with you, today. It says everything:

251     0

Alamosa Trees: Trees and shrubs for birds

“A common thread that runs through the fabric of America is our love for wildlife,” according to the Arbor Day Foundation (ADF).

224     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Comics have a universe problem

Though I haven’t seen it yet, the critical consensus of “Spider-Man: Homecoming” is that it’s another blockbuster for Marvel.

245     0

Letter to the editor: Ice cream truck runs over dog twice and keeps going

Sunday, July 11, around 7 p.m. our beloved Shitzu dog, Oscar, slipped out of the back yard and wandered a half a block down First Street and onto State Street where he was struck twice by the Alamosa ice cream truck.

237     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Fish stories

When hordes of miners and new towns appeared in Colorado Territory, the supply of native fish quickly diminished because of fouling and diverting water for prospecting and mining, town building, farming, dynamiting fish out of pools and many other events

249     0

Valley Gardening: Pizza and Portulaca

Everything is better in the neighborhood! I’m not feeling so stupid this week for leaving a door open and being robbed on the Fourth of July.

275     0

After the Fact: Climbing the ladder

“Only 32 percent of adult employees in the U.S. are motivated at and interested in their jobs.”

268     0

Still Waters: Like a secret language

Someone sitting next to me in a meeting might look over at my shorthand notes and make a comment like, “My grandmother used to do that. I haven’t seen that in years.”

231     0

Being Beautiful: Where have all the dragons gone?

It’s hard to argue with a fire-breathing dragon.

268     0

K.C. at Bat: Gaining a sixth daughter

And then there were six.

273     0

Amarah's Corner: Son of alcoholic shares his story

My friend, Jerry Moe, National Director of Children’s Programs at the Betty Ford Center, a part of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, says:

231     0

Native Writes: The Congressional soap opera

It would be nice if one could declare everything he or she didn’t like “false” and have it be so.

230     0

Land, Water and People: July is peak wildflower month in the high country

I was met with a rainbow of colors as soon as I stepped onto the trail leading to Hunters Lake.

259     0

Gieger's Culture Counter: When four wheels beats two legs

I’ve never been a car guy. However, it’s hard to deny the thrill of recreating a Jeep commercial by blasting Cat Stevens while driving over Stony Pass towards Silverton.

211     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: D&RGW

Ahead for the valiant “Baby Road,” as it was popularly called, lay receiverships and bankruptcies during the half century after its arrival at Alamosa in 1878.

318     0

Valley Gardening: Better to wilt than rot

Life is good in the neighborhood—kind of! I did something pretty stupid on the Fourth of July.

300     0

After the Fact: Bullwinkle

After a not-exceedingly pleasant experience with a man out of his element in the floral department at a local grocery store, my daughter asked, “What has happened to common courtesy?”

316     0

Still Waters: Vacationing at home

Last weekend was a mini vacation for me with two of my best friends, my older sister Beth and her husband Kevin, who has been part of our family for probably four decades now, even before they got married.

264     0

Being Beautiful: Equal parts sugar and patience, a winning recipe

Summer and homemade ice cream seem to go perfectly together.

227     0

Native Writes: The warfare on our minds is winning

Whenever someone declares that it was difficult to celebrate Independence Day this year because of real and perceived threats to our nation, I remember people in our country who still aren’t independent.

254     0

Amarah's Corner: A teacher’s point of view

Hey kids like me! I’m sharing a letter today from a retired music teacher who knows what she’s talking about! One of my goals is to stop kids from being kicked out of band/music/sports in school because, “their grades aren’t good enough,” especially if th

250     0

Alamosa Flowers: Water smart shrubs and trees

Two weeks ago I addressed some challenges of creating a sustainable landscape in Alamosa while reducing water consumption and maintenance costs.

244     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Fourth of July, 1878

When the first train officially crossed the Rio Grande River into Alamosa on the Fourth of July, the new town was ready.

264     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Ten years of tapping, pinching, swiping

Last week was the 10th anniversary of Apple’ iPhone. The 3.5-inch multi-touch screen changed the world of mobile phones and the way we communicate forever.

268     0

Guest Opinion: Famous song takes on new meaning

Linda Morrison had the kind of son of which any mother would be proud.

268     0

Valley Gardening: The sodful truth

As I write, the clouds have rolled in, and it feels wonderful You would think coming from Minnesota I would have coping skills for the heat but I don’t.

309     0

After the Fact: It seemed like a good idea

One of our neighbors, a gentleman well over 6’ tall, donned a hot pink terrycloth rabbit costume for the country club’s Easter party and egg hunt.

428     0

Still Waters: Don’t take Fido to the fireworks

I love fireworks. There’s something magical about the sparkling colors in the sky at fireworks shows like our local display at the fairgrounds.

297     0

Being Beautiful: Wouldn’t take nothing for my journey now

I awoke this morning to the unmistakable aroma of sausage frying.

285     0

Native Writes: Redesigning Ken and Barbie

Thinking about last week’s column on Mattel’s Ken and Barbie, I wondered why the pair must forever be young and never age, so I began my own design line.

323     0

Amarah's Corner: Amarah offers free Bible correspondence course

Did you know Jesus told us to, Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15, KJV)? You may be thinking, “But, I’m just a kid!” Well, I’m a kid, too, but I found a way to do it! (Thank you, Brother Erwin)!

261     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: A tale of two seasons

Media doesn’t exist in a context-less vacuum and the television show “Queen Sugar,” based on Natalie Baszile’s 2014 book of the same name, is no different.

278     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: D&RG to the mines

When mines began to open in the San Juan Mountains, the narrow-gauge Denver & Rio Grande Railway was between a rock and a hard place.

346     0

Valley Gardening: Special brew helps plants survive summer

It is so dang hot! My favorite part of the last few days is when the clouds cover the sun—even if only for a few minutes.

331     0

After the Fact: Gourmet dining

We are all guilty, at one time or another, of saying (or writing) something really stupid, foot-in-mouth events that we live to regret.

333     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Two poems about Alzheimer’s

In recognition of June as Alzheimer’s Month, I share two poems

282     0

Still Waters: A ‘forever stamp’ to hold on to

I don’t think I’ve ever been this excited about a postage stamp before and not this excited about the official release of anything since the Sand Dunes quarter.

302     0

Being Beautiful: Roll over, Beethoven

There are not many things that stir the soul quite like hearing the one you love play familiar gospel hymns on his new (well, actually used and very old) baby grand piano

304     0

Native Writes: The changing complexion of play

Today’s Associated Press reports the effort by Mattel toy maker to redesign Barbie’s 56-year-old “boyfriend,” Ken.

301     0

Amarah's Corner: Father shares heartbreaking story

Hey kids like me! Today, I’m sharing a heartfelt letter from a dear grandfather:

292     0

Alamosa Flowers: The challenge of a beautiful yard in the heat

The last two weeks of June and the first three weeks of July tend to be the hottest days in Alamosa.

307     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Know when to quit

Whenever I watch a new show I give it three episodes to hook me. A show’s pilot is designed to be engaging so I give it two more chances to see if the momentum can keep up

307     0

Guest Opinion: Creating an all-of-the-above energy future

For too long, the U.S. has operated with no comprehensive plan for meeting the inevitable increased demand for energy created by both traditional and renewable resources.

333     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Honoring San Luis

The name of the San Luis Valley and Colorado’s first permanent plaza might seem to be a puzzler.

342     0

From a mom: Lessons for my best friend

An ultrasound a little over 10 years ago wasn’t enough to convince me that I would finally have a little girl sidekick.

399     0

Valley Gardening: Grasshoppers and columnist jump all over the place

Man…it’s hot in the neighborhood! Years and years ago Mickey Widhalm and I would place bets on how hot it was going to be during the summer.

309     0

After the Fact: Dear ol’ dad

“Unit comes complete with 473 screws and (snickering in the background) 471 nuts.” Have you ever tried to assemble one of those prefabricated pieces of furniture they sell at WalMart?

332     0

Getting lost and getting found through friendship

I have always heard that friends are the family you choose. Virginia Woolf said it best: “Some people go to priests, others to poetry, I to my friends.”

329     0

Daddy, the fix it man

Even though my daddy is now well into his 80’s with some vision and hearing issues, he still is a pretty good handyman.

360     0

Land, Water & People: Remembering the Million Fire

June 19th will mark the 15th anniversary of the start of the Million Fire near South Fork.

322     0

Native Writes: Tourists in your own hometown

It’s amazing how a couple of little things can change one’s perspective on the moment at hand.

336     0

Amarah's Corner: Music makes the soul happier, brain stronger

Hey kids like me! I want to share an awesome note I received about something that means a whole lot to me:

320     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Summer beers to sip

With the train for Rails and Ales pulling out of the station this weekend now is the perfect time to ready one’s taste buds to sip glasses of sudsy beer.

323     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Honoring San Juan

In the San Luis Valley, we have few place names honoring San Juan, whether the mountains or the saint.

317     0

Valley Gardening: Gardening … and other advice

All is good in the neighborhood! Peyton Sanchez, and his family, and his customers raised over $2,000 for the Jerry Reed Scholarship Fund. Way to go Peyton—I am guessing that you slept really well for the past week.

336     0

Movin' On with Nellie: The missing shoes: An Alzheimer’s story

(In recognition of June as Alzheimer’s Month, I write this story.) Aunt Leona was 79 years old when she became 3 again.

301     0

After the Fact: Singing in the shower

While my mom was a fan of all things cultural (and a really good artist who gave up what could have been a fabulous career in favor of raising a whole bunch of wild street urchins, otherwise known as my brothers and sisters), dad couldn’t tell a Picasso f

360     0

Tips and drips from an interior decorating dropout

I doubt HGTV will be giving me my own home improvement show anytime soon, unless it would be for comic relief.

347     0

Even mama's boys should remember dad now and then

Most folks who know me would declare I am always five or ten minutes late. I have heard it said that I will probably be late for my own funeral, but if so, at least that day, I won’t get fussed at about it.

332     0

Kids Like Me: Columnist celebrates one year anniversary, thankful for answered prayers

It wasn’t that long ago when my whole world was darkness with no light at all except the hope I had that my grandma would find me and my baby sister Ava and take us home with her.

298     0

Native Writes: The real deal

Whatever happened to the good old belly laugh? You know, the one that brings tears to the eyes?

403     0

Alamosa Flowers: Roots are the problem and nyctinasty

Increasingly I have perennials (plants that live for more than two years) and shrubs (a woody plant smaller than a tree, usually having multiple permanent stems branching from or near the ground) in my flower beds.

322     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: It’s time to join the clone club

This weekend the fifth and final season of “Orphan Black” premieres on BBC America.

359     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Off to summer camp

Campfires and singing “Down in the Valley,” story time, awards ceremonies, marshmallows on sticks, poison ivy — anyone who ever attended a summer camp will have indelible memories.

353     0

After the Fact: Liar, liar, pants on fire

Telling lies used to be cause for some pretty serious punishment.

351     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Erik Mestas is a stucco artisan

Valley born and raised, Erik Mestas is an artisan of grand standards and his medium is stucco.

347     0

Valley Gardening: Lemonade and ‘Butters’

As I write, it is Friday late afternoon, and the rain is coming down! This is all so wonderful…unless you are down in Cole Park for the Summerfest on the Ri

375     0

Still Waters: Go outside and play

No one can legitimately complain that there’s nothing to do in the San Luis Valley, especially in the summertime.

404     0

Being Beautiful: All dolled up and everywhere to go

If you squinch your eyes just a little, open your imagination as far as it will go, and add a sprinkle of pixie dust if you have it handy, it’s not that hard to make them “real.”

359     0

Native Writes: Accidents present a puzzle

There have been a number of bad vehicle accidents on our roads recently and the dinner table conversation surrounded the question: Why?

404     0

Amarah's Corner: True stories of hope shared

Corliss Taylor-Dunn is back this week and shares two true stories of the lives of children who successfully came out on top in spite of rough beginnings.

386     0

'Master of None' is the show of my generation

If you read a random selection of headlines it looks like us millennials are the scourge of the earth. We’re killing malls, grocery stores, restaurants, vacations, the diamond industry and we can’t buy houses because of our avocado toast fetish. We’re bei

384     0

Land, Water and People: Summer is when the magic happens

Managing the 1.8 million acre Rio Grande National Forest is a monumental task. Hundreds of thousands of people visit every year using the Forest’s campgrounds, picnic areas, restrooms, fishing docks, parking areas, and extensive road and trail system.

381     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Smoke gets in your eyes

Full disclosure: I have never tried marijuana, so I cannot testify personally about the weed’s effects on relaxation, pain, or detachment from reality.

369     0

Valley Gardening: Just do it!

Life is good in the neighborhood! Peyton and Landon Sanchez, with their dad Charlie in tow, came by for lunch yesterday. What a wonderful family!

428     0

After the Fact: Will you still need me when I’m 64?

Our high school yearbook, with photos that would do a passport proud, featured a print version of the angst-worn teenage popularity contest.

403     0

Still Waters: Moments of sacrifice

It was only one battle but a decisive one.

401     0

Being Beautiful: A Kodak moment shared with my Daddy

I wished that moment would last forever.

463     0

Amarah's Corner: Part 2: One mom to another

This week we have Part 2 of the thoughts and feelings of a young mother regarding the fate of her friend who was recently arrested on drug charges:

387     0

Native Writes: Three generations of Maroons

The end of May is a time of new beginnings. Baby calves cry for their mothers while older calves head for new homes, bird eggs develop life in nests and children excitedly pass to a higher grade, some in brand new schools.

398     0

Alamosa Flowers: Time to divide – perennials that is

It’s time to divide some garden perennials.

391     0

Geiger's Cultuer Counter: Duality of HBO

Sundays are historically the best night in television.

392     0

K.C. at Bat: I fish, therefore I am

Great friends don’t grow on trees. And yet, like a tree, if you don’t nurture friendships they won’t grow. I’ve only known a few friendships like that as most of us probably have.

436     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Happy days, sad days

We need holidays and vacations to help us refresh and get through the realities of life that await around the next corner, so it’s little wonder that next weekend will bring an outburst of relaxation and summer fun.

415     0

After the Fact: Believe it or not

In that I will believe anything that agrees with what I already believe, I am no different than the next dozen people you’ll meet.

456     0

Being Beautiful: With all due respect to cats and hamsters, dogs rule at my house

I remember the days leading up to when she would be ours. We said a hundred names aloud to try them out in full sentences. "Mildred, welcome to your new home." "Good girl, Mabel. Good girl." "Loretta wants a treat?"

424     0

Still Waters: To the mattresses!

No, I don’t plan on going to war with the mafia, but I did “go to the mattresses” in a more literal sense this week.

467     0

Amarah's Corner: Part 1: One mom to another

This week we have Part 1 of the thoughts and feelings of a young mother regarding the fate of her friend who was recently arrested on drug charges:

460     0

Valley Gardening: Roll the dice and plant anyway

The weather this week certainly explains why I call gardening and farming, legalized gambling! I even had to move a few of my flowers at the store inside—not all of them, but things like Coleus, Impatiens, Portulaca and some of the herbs, like Basil.

460     0

Native Writes: My rebellion for the day

From time to time, I have entertained the idea of running for office. My inner “critters” have held their own “roast” each time.

478     0

Land, Water and People: Hard Tread: The impacts of illegal mountain bike trails

My first mountain bike was tank heavy, but my favorite means of traversing the vales of the Yampa Valley. Since that time I have bounced (and sometimes crashed) down miles of back road and single track

472     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: The Olympics of singing

Every May the world witnesses something great. I’m not talking about epic season finales, the coming of a beautiful summer, or hardworking students graduating. I’m talking about the international reality phenomenon Eurovision, aka the Olympics of singing.

465     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Celebrating National Egg Month

Some people may have a hard time deciding whether they want scrambles, once-over-lightlies, soft-boils, hard-boils, omelets, whatever.

507     0

After the Fact: Happy Mothers’ Day

Mothers. We all have one.

550     0

Valley Gardening: Always a good time to sow seeds of kindness

Happy Mother’s Day to everyone! My mom passed away seven years ago, (right after Mother’s Day) and I miss her every day.

454     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Mom

We posed for the formal photograph when I was in third grade.

541     0

Still Waters: Because of her

My mother raised four children, three daughters and a son. The three sisters have always been close and supportive of each other.

541     0

Being Beautiful: Musings on bridges built with love by women forged of steel

My mind is saturated with unforgettable mothers, I suppose because Mother’s Day marks our calendars once again.

458     0

Native Writes: Remembering mom

As we look forward to Sunday, Mother’s Day, thoughts turn to the women who have been responsible for populating the planet. Even test tube babies need mothers.

557     0

Amarah's Corner: Doctor shares effects of alcohol, opiates on babies

Hey kids like me, Dr. Svetlana Bresnitz is back today with very important information about the harmful effects of alcohol and opiates on babies when a pregnant mom drinks alcohol and or uses opiates.

526     0

Alamosa Flowers: Spring blooms and plants for birds

Taking a deep breath in the garden I smell rain and the scent of spring flowers.

503     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: ‘The Dark Tower’ doesn’t excite

I’ve spent the last few weeks glued to Youtube watching a variety of trailers on my computer.

529     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Conservation on a landscape scale

Contrary to what we might suppose from reading gossip magazines and political news, there really are some wealthy people who value things such as science and the environment.

528     0

Guest Opinion: Legislation will help rural hospitals

As the 2017 session winds down it appears that Colorado lawmakers are close to reaching a bi-partisan agreement on SB17-267, “Sustainability of Rural Colorado,” allowing us to avoid major cuts and closures to rural hospitals by creating the Colorado healt

512     0

Valley Gardening: Hardening off plants and people

Everything is good in my neighborhood! By that I mean, I am gardening, the grand kids are healthy and life is good

556     0

After the Fact: Keeping up with the Joneses

In the very middle of winter when there’s 20” of snow covering my sidewalk and driveway, dust accumulates.

514     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Compassion should be heart of all health care

I met Dr. Kelsey Walker at Rio Grande Hospital Clinic, Del Norte; she has experience with complicated humans, like me.

482     0

Editorial: Some growing pains with new website

The Valley Courier is excited to announce a brand new look and a whole new functionality for our website, which changes the way our readers can interact with us.

665     0

Being Beautiful: Food for the body and food for the soul

Why are we so nostalgic?

596     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: 'Samurai Jack' is back, bleak, and beautiful

This weekend I went back in time to the early 2000s. I was in my basement surrounded by my LEGOs, “Star Wars” action figures and had no care in the world. How and why did this happen? Because “Samurai Jack” was back on the air.

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Being Beautiful: Sometimes hope is all we have

This is a story of hope.

527     0

Still Waters: Friendly fire casaulties in the war on drugs

We have a drug problem in our country and in our neighborhoods. No one denies that. It is visible in spent syringes and spent lives. It crowds our court systems and our jails. It destroys bodies, families and souls.

527     0

Amarah's Corner: The awful, stinking reality of smoking cigarettes

Memories of my beautiful mother include nasty, stinking cigarettes. I can still see her with a cigarette in her mouth and exhaling the nasty smelling smoke. I still smell the awful stench and I remember being caught in the seemingly inescapable, suffocati

563     0

Native Writes: Heroes and women

I recently commented that my heroes were being claimed by death at an accelerated pace.

588     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: The comfort of the familiar

Humans are creatures of habit. If we have an outfit we enjoy, we’ll wear it a lot. We return to a favorite restaurant to order our usual dish and drink. If a classroom doesn’t have assigned seating, we still end up sitting in the same spots class after cl

523     0

Land, Water and People: Take a break from your spring chores

Spring is a time when many people are consumed with an assortment of chores around the house. The to-do list is often long and one’s mind is often stressfully thinking about the next item on the list while working on the current chore.

567     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Unearthing Summitville

It was obvious from the standing-room-only crowd at the Rio Grande County Museum on April 22 that Summitville played an important part in the life of the San Luis Valley.

565     0

After the Fact: John 11:35

Some of my best friends are Catholic. Quite a few are Jewish. There’s a smattering of Greek Orthodox and dozens of assorted Protestants.

584     0

Valley Gardening: Plant now, regret later

Farming and gardening, are just other words for legalized gambling.

585     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Patrons of Caton’s love the customer service

I’d been through the automatic car wash many times with my small car; however, I was aghast, as say, Jessica on Murder She Wrote might be, when I saw parts fly and the hood swing in the wind. The operators shut the fan off and I checked the damage with th

580     0

Still Waters: Scenes of quiet heroism

A small selfless act can be heroic, like giving up a seat on the train or paying for someone’s groceries at the checkout counter. It can be more noticeable and affect more people, like comforting others at the scene of a horrific vehicle crash when you ju

576     0

Being Beautiful: Memories, like flowers, bloom brightly in all seasons

What is it about flowers that we love so much?

595     0

Native Writes: What if I die?

Recent events have moved me into another realm of thought: What if I die?

610     0

Amarah's Corner: Don't give up on your dreams

In spite of the hurtful things our parents who are addicts say and do to us, they don’t seem to realize we still love them.

560     0

Editorial: Overdue to brand the SLV as ONE

Over the course of two years, 55-plus meetings, 2,000 volunteer hours, at least 5,000 miles of in-valley travel and 25 gallons of coffee, leaders of the San Luis Valley may be just hours away from branding the area as ONE.

587     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Remembering Reed’s room

I didn’t send any words of encouragement. I didn’t want any message to be my “last” message.

550     0

Alamosa Flowers: Alamosa Arbor Week and early blooms

There’s still time to help plant trees during Alamosa Arbor Week!

569     0

Just the Facts: Meteorite or meteor-wrong?

The oldest thing in Colorado is more ancient than Earth itself. It’s a meteorite.

625     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: ah-CHOO

In Del Norte, not far from the San Juans, every morning I’ll find that my car has a blanket of dust, blown from the Four Corners. In Alamosa, Monte Vista, Center, Mosca, and Hooper, people will close their windows while the wind blows across the Valley.

641     0

After the Fact: Smarty pants

My mom was somewhere barely short of brilliant: she had the answers to all of my questions and she read stories to me every night before I fell asleep

698     0

Valley Gardening: Low water landscaping doesn't have to be ugly

Life is good in the neighborhood—and it is almost warm enough for me to unload the flowers and vegetables out of my truck.

640     0

Still Waters: This is how it’s done

I’m so proud of our Alamosa city staff, city council and local residents for developing an ordinance amendment regarding feral cats that I think (most) everyone can live with, especially the cats.

659     0

Being Beautiful: Revision, reunion, and the joy of second chances

My favorite prefix is “re.”

649     0

Native Writes: Love lives on

When I was in college, I took a course called Thanatology, which dealt with death and dying. In fact, the instructor, James Douglass, attempted to deal with it in writing as his own death neared. I treasure a long note he wrote explaining his decision.

697     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Fight cancer with memories

My cousin Jerry is fighting liver cancer. Like so many families today, our loved ones have fought some tough battles with cancer. I wish that it could be different.

598     0

Amarah's Corner: Loving an addict

Kathy Suazo, Child Protection Supervisor, Alamosa County DHS, is my guest this month.

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Land, Water and People: Desert Journal 2017—Photographing Factory Butte

Blue-grey ridged slopes curved 1,600 feet upward, increasing in steepness the higher they went, ending with a golden, vertical sandstone cap. From my perspective, the geologic sculpture looked like an accordion lampshade.

612     0

Guest Column: You are loved

In his eulogy for his brother Robert F. Kennedy, Ted Kennedy said, “My brother need not be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life; to be remembered simply as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and

681     0

Valley Gardening: ‘Tracing’ minerals

I think it is finally spring, and you can start planting some of your seeds and plants.

666     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Moving water through acequias

It’s a short growing season for crops like corn and squash – only about 90 days or even less. Prayer and good luck might help.

650     0

After the Fact: Observing holidays

When there are younger brothers or sisters in a family, you get to practice essential parenting skills long before you actually become a parent

699     0

Movin' On with Nellie: A lesson for every story

There’s a lesson for every movie & story we watch and read.

663     0

Being Beautiful: Far across the distance and spaces between us…

I grew up with brothers, three of them, not a single girl child in our house when we were children.

651     0

Editorial: Quaff more economic growth

We believe that within the next year, the SLV will also become a target for lovers of craft beer.

653     0

Still Waters: Flawless

At the beginning of the music video, nothing is white except the lead singer’s teeth as he begins to sing the words:

747     0

Native Writes: Snow on Easter

This Easter looks to be a better one than the past, though fellow old timers have a way of reminding me that Mother Nature is, if nothing else, deceptive.

703     0

Amarah's Corner: 'Kids like me' recieve a 'terrible gift'

In Matthew 18:10 (KJV), Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

662     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: ‘Attack on Titan’ reintroduced me to anime

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of animated television shows. I’ve written about “Voltron,” “Samurai Jack,” “Steven Universe,” “Rick and Morty” and other shows in this column. However, my love for anime is a bit more reserved

668     0

Alamosa Flowers: Tree plantings, pruning, and species worldwide

Arbor Week and Earth Day are coming up. Celebrate Earth Day by helping to plant trees and shrubs at the Rio Grande Farm Park (RGFP). There will be a breakfast at 9 a.m. followed by planting and kids’ activities at 10 a.m. You will also have a chance to le

647     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Turning the other cheek

It’s time for another of my columns usually called “Going to the Movies.” The film I’ve chosen this time is “42: The Jackie Robinson Story.”

722     0

Valley Gardening: Peas could be planted

If you weren’t at the SLVCRF concert at Society Hall last week, you missed a really beautiful evening!

694     0

After the Fact: It’s a small world

There aren’t too many things that, between the daughter and I, cannot be managed in the arena of household maintenance and repair.

721     0

Land, Water and People: The challenge of managing a travel system

I think most people reading this column know people can’t ride their motorized vehicles anywhere they want on the national forest.

660     0

Land, Water and People: Protecting our investment-Knowing when to turn around

stepped out of the car into the unseasonably warm sun. The shhhh of the breeze moving through the branches of piñon pine and juniper trees dominated the soundscape. Nearby a male bluebird blended into the sky as it flitted from one tree to another. Spring

610     0

Land, Water and People: Insect populations on the decline

The 2016 forest health survey results were released a month ago and showed a decline in activity of the three forest insects that have been most noticeably impacting the Rio Grande National Forest: The spruce beetle, spruce budworm and western tent caterp

651     0

Still Waters: Emerald Isle heritage

Thanks to some expert research on the part of my maternal uncle, I now can claim Irish ancestry on both sides. We were never sure about my maternal grandmother’s heritage since she was basically left on a doorstep as a baby.

655     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Bear Dance

While cranes are making it clear that the seasons are changing, another kind of rebirth is happening, but not so readily seen by most of us. Bears are emerging from their dens after their hibernation, usually in March.

702     0

Still Waters: Renewed vision

“Give light to my eyes.” Psalm 13:3.

717     0

Being Beautiful: From Air Supply to ZZ Top and Ricky Schroeder to John Stamos

Some of the things I did as a youngster make me laugh now.

721     0

Amarah's Corner: April is Child Abuse Awareness Month

In Matthew 18:10 (KJV), Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

673     0

Native Writes: Atmosphere impeding progress

These are highly charged times and I am convinced one must choose a side and adhere stubbornly to it or risk being boiled in oil.

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Geiger's Culture Counter: Rounding up a gaggle of fools

I don’t use the internet on the first day of April as a safety precaution. If you followed suit, here are the highlights of what you missed.

645     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Cat food

A widely circulated report says that from 1.4 billion to 3.7 billion wild birds are killed annually by cats in the U.S., although an esteemed ornithologist, David Sibley, estimated a few years ago that the figure is around 500 million. At any rate statist

712     0

Valley Gardening: Grow naturally

I, and many other supporters, am VERY thankful this week! After a long, brutal YEAR of various treatments, setbacks, and more treatments Casey Kanen Martinez is cancer FREE!! It’s been almost exactly a year since Casey was diagnosed. So many of you readin

757     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Ears, we all have them

I’ve been thinking about ears lately. It started when I watched Charlie Rose’s Monday interview with Sally Fields. Her ears looked like a nautilus shell flattened like an appendage to the head. Ears offer us a lot in terms of communication and elegance.

716     0

After the Fact: No two snowflakes

My nephew David taught my grandson how to swim. They were “fooling around,” as it was later explained, by the swimming hole at the ranch. Zan, 3 years old at the time, told David he wanted to swim. So David threw him in. And Zan swam for shore like his li

698     0

Still Waters: Fool among the angels

I am so grateful that God suffers fools on April Fools Day and every other day.

689     0

Amarah's Corner: Mom in community corrections shares advice

In Matthew 18:10 (KJV), Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

627     0

Native Writes: Googling myself

A good friend asked me if I knew everything about myself.

678     0

Alamosa Trees: Trees for our parks

Twenty-two new trees will be planted in Alamosa parks and the cemetery this spring. We’ll plant many of the trees – and we hope with your help – during Alamosa Arbor Week, April 22 -28.

651     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Jordan Peele changed the horror genre

I don’t watch horror movies often, whether on my home screen or the big screen. I rarely see them in theaters because they’re almost never worth the price of admission. The last one I saw in a cinema was “Paranormal Activity 4” in 2012. Yet I knew I had t

636     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Fish facts

Even during the icy months fishermen were trying their luck at Mountain Home and Big Meadow Reservoir. And this summer, who wouldn’t love to get out and catch a nice trout from one of our streams?

704     0

After the Fact: Proper planning prevents work

“People who enjoy meetings should not be in charge of anything.” Dr.Thomas Sowell is a retired professor of economics at Stanford University and undoubtedly knows whereof he speaks.

661     0

Movin' On with Nellie: Trump-y needs Dr. Phil for Whitehouse call

This week I learned that Trump-y has some serious behavioral health (aka mental health) issues. These behaviors are manifested with his 3 a.m. tweets that are riddled with lies, fake news, and threats to build a wall.

622     0

Valley Gardening: With our compliments

I am so thankful for a day like today—Friday! The moisture is so appreciated—unless you live in San Luis or Ft. Garland because they got between 8 and 18 inches of snow—YIKES. If the weather forecasters are on their game we should get more moisture next w

670     0

Still Waters: More weird emails

Julianne Kaufman was so kind to reach out to me today. “We’ve been out of touch for a while,” she emailed. Out of touch? We’re so “out of touch,” Julianne, I don’t even know who you are.

674     0

Being Beautiful: What ever happened to Baby Jane?

Imagine with me if you can saving up your spare coins for a long time, heading off to an anniversary or birthday dinner at The Brown Derby, one of old Hollywood’s most celebrated restaurants.

614     0

Amarah's Corner: Pediatrictian addressess marijuana effects

In Matthew 18:10 KJV, Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

638     0

Just the Facts: Colorado's mass extinctions

Colorado’s full of rocks. Some bear gold, diamonds or silver. Others burble oil, gas, and water. A rare few record death itself.

687     0

Native Writes: Why then and why now?

It was a sunny afternoon when I sat watching little dust particles drifting through the air. They do that when sunbeams yield the spotlight.

652     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: The case for utopian entertainment

If I had to choose of favorite genre of fiction, I’d probably pick dystopian. It’s not the most uplifting media to consume, but the thought of how bad life could be refreshes my perspective of my current circumstances.

589     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Food for thought

Some of us have never been desperately hungry. Not even during the Great Depression was I ever hungry. Bored perhaps because, during my childhood in New England, we had too many Wheaties for breakfast and too much salt cod on toast for supper.

648     0

After the Fact: School supplies

Expectations for graduating from high school today seem significantly different than when I was a student, or maybe they just go about it in a different way.

708     0

Valley Gardening: Where there's a Willie Wade, there's a way

Life is good in the neighborhood! Is not this weather so wonderful? And so warm? Maybe too warm?

630     0

Being Beautiful: Spreading sparkles from china cabinets to petting zoos

I was just a little boy with his mama, and we had driven up Dykes Chapel Road to Miss Jessy Jean’s house, Perry County’s own petting zoo because she had at least one of every living thing created by God and known to man.

630     0

Amarah's Corner: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Part 2

In Matthew 18:10 KJV, Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

669     0

Native Writes: Thissa and thatta

My old editor, F.G. "Doc" Kirby called columns like this "thissa and thatta." They are observations from passing along the road we call life.

668     0

Alamosa Flowers: First blooms of the season

Hurray for purple Crocus (Crocus). It’s the first plant to bloom in our garden this year and is displaying four lovely blossoms. I spied the blossoms poking their heads out above the mulch in our protected, south facing garden.

649     0

After the Fact: Tragedies of Shakespearean dimension

My sister Micki had an assortment of friends about on a par with the Whitman’s Sampler box of candy, except hers was heavier on the nuts. Knot-head Mixon lived a couple of doors down and she was a typical over-indulged, spoiled only child of older parents

629     0

Valley Gardening: DE—not just for plants

Okay…before I start writing this week, I am feeling like I need to write a disclaimer. Like…what I have to say may hurt you, may cause diarrhea, may save you money, may cause suicidal thoughts, may make you want to throw up, etc.

707     0

Being Beautiful: Of Willie Vee, Victoria Ivy, and their unbroken circle of love

Let me be guilty of many things, but never of ingratitude.

621     0

Still Waters: American and proud

Saturday night provided an inspiring lesson in democracy. I attended the Lincoln Day Dinner, which was held at Adams State University’s student union building. A number of protestors gathered at the entrances with messages for the Republican leaders who a

643     0

Amarah's Corner: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Part 1

In Matthew 18:10 KJV, Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

630     0

Native Writes: The pot lifestyle

The current debate over marijuana brought back some interesting memories of The Courier newsroom in the 1970s.

679     0

Geiger’s Culture Counter: Can you separate art from artist?

Before the best picture envelope snafu, the most controversial moment at the 89th Academy Awards was Casey Affleck beating Denzel Washington for best actor. Washington delivered what some call his best performance ever in “Fences” while Affleck moved audi

650     0

Rabbitbrush Rambler: Return of the cranes

Migrating Sandhill Cranes started to arrive a month ago and now are here en masse. They have been arriving earlier each year lately to herald the news that the parade is ready to begin in the Valley, and some will be staying for a month or so.

647     0

After the Fact: Olly-olly-ox-in-free

Do you remember ever, on a summer’s day, saying, “I’m bored.” Neither do I. Growing up as the “leading edge” of the Boomer generation, we didn’t have television and our telephones were firmly attached to the wall, or to a cord that ran in through the wall

657     0

Valley Gardening: Ruthie get your gun

Let’s see…. I have not been able to find my little criminals—that’s what happens when you work for a living—you can’t just park in the neighborhood and look for them. I did find out that the same ones that stole from me more than likely also stole from a

641     0

Being Beautiful: And the greatest of these is love

“Three things will last forever: faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.”

616     0

Still Waters: Blessings from Bill's basket

Every Sabbath morning right after the offering is collected during the worship service at my church, Bill passes another basket, this one to provide rather than collect.

675     0

Amarah's Corner: Music is important to self esteem

In Matthew 18:10 KJV, Jesus said, “Take heed that ye despise not (hurt or be mean to) one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.”

613     0

Native Writes: Learning respect

I need to wean myself from Facebook.

714     0

Geiger's Culture Counter: Gaming on the go

I'm sitting at a ski shop as my dad is getting fitted for new boots. The entire process takes roughly an hour and I've killed as much time as possible by browsing the store's other wares. I pull out my phone and load up a game.

642     0

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