August 29, 2014

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There's lots to do for little or no cost
Tuesday, April 01, 2014 9:12 PM


There’s lots to do for little or no cost

By Joyce Huseby • Guest Columnist

Have you talked to anyone in the past few months that hasn’t said “I’m sick of the weather/snow”? Doubtful!

It’s easy to get moody when there isn’t any sunshine for days and you hear a lot of grumbling about it. Maybe the thing to do is break the monotony with something you don’t usually do. If you have a camera stuck away somewhere, how about walking or driving around in the county and take a few snapshots of places or people you haven’t seen for a long time. Maybe an artistic look at the view off a bridge or the scene behind the library.

Speaking of the library, if you don’t have a library card it costs just a dollar to get one. That opens up a whole world of things to do. I see posters in the elevator with programs they are having for the kids every so often. If you sign up the kids, that frees mom/dad to some free time to look around and read the local newspapers. Also, a huge variety of magazines, CDs and even DVDs are available for borrowing free of charge.


The main attraction are the hundreds (thousands?) of books from the very newest titles to the old favorites plus recorded books, and they can also help you get what you want onto your Kindle. If they don’t have the book on hand, they will gladly do an interlibrary loan, which is also free (unless you keep it too long, of course).

My main interest is going to the library and using the computers, which are also free to use. I hear a lot of negative comments about not caring about computers and not knowing how to use one, etc. I have to laugh at that since it’s just typing in what you want and then tapping your index finger on the mouse to choose what you want. Actually, the library staff gives computer classes every few months, especially for beginners. If you’re bored, it’s not the library’s fault!

The library isn’t the only place to meet and talk to people. There are always the coffee shops, such as McDonald’s where you can get a senior coffee for 70 cents and sit and visit with all the friends, neighbors and business people who come in and out at all hours. You usually see someone you know. Of course, the same goes for the Dairy Queen, which has a special every day with no coupon needed that makes it more economical for you to eat out with a friend every once in a while. Between 2-4 p.m., you get a real deal – any drink with a straw for half price, even milk shakes. That place is so neat and clean and the food is always good. It makes it a pleasure to go in.

If you really want to go talk to people, go into the Past Time Café. They always seem to have people coming and going during the day. The food is great and the portions are generous. They have specials most days, too, and the quality is good so you can call up someone to go with you and be sure they will enjoy the lunch and the friendly employees.

The Paulding County Senior Center has nice activities and programs all year long. If you are of this age group, they will be happy to help you with your questions, or join them for a meal or activity. They offer many services, many of which are free. The staff is friendly and helpful and you may find some old friends or new ones if you pay a visit to the center. They have speakers who discuss financial questions, help with income taxes, give information about Medicare, nutrition and many other topics.

There are probably lots more things to do in Paulding County that I haven’t brought up, but when the sun starts shining we seem to get more inspiration. Monroe Park will be finished before long, and there’s LaFountain Park where you can take a snack and sit in the sunshine and fresh air (soon). Think about all the ball games and the swimming pool opening.

The newspaper is always a good source of activities and new ideas. Many clubs and organizations print their meetings in the Progress and you might find something that interests you.

Maybe someone who reads this will be inspired to come up with some more things to do that don’t cost much and write a letter to the editor with their ideas to share. Letters to the editor are my favorite part of the newspaper. They don’t cost anything to have printed. It’s especially nice when they are positive and make you feel good when you read them.

Joyce Huseby is a guest columnist for the Paulding County Progress.

The opinions stated are those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper.


Pick on grandpa night
Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:53 AM

By Jim Langham

It didn’t take our little granddaughter, Kirsten, long to get my attention the other night when Joyce and I walked into the house for a special evening of babysitting with her.

Her dad had told her about an hour earlier that Grandpa and Grandma Langham were staying with her for the evening and it didn’t take her long to make sure that the evening was well planned.

First there was going to be a photo session with Grandpa, then we were going to have pizza that was going to be ordered in because “he has the money to pay for it.”

The perfumerie in the garden
Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:50 AM

By Kylee Baumle

Fragrance in some form or another makes up one of the most successful luxury industries the world has ever known. Few things that are by and large unnecessary, can boast of such popularity as the use of scent in our everyday lives.

Think of it - we don’t just use fragrance in perfumes and colognes. Cleaning supplies have it. We burn candles, plug cartridges into our walls and hang deodorizers in our cars. It’s even in our garbage bags. This makes it tough for those who are allergic to perfumes, because we live in a world that’s inundated with them.

Thank goodness I’m not adversely affected by perfumes, because I love fragrance and use it in all forms. In my garden, I grow some plants expressly for their fragrance, not because I think the plant or flowers they bear are particularly attractive.

Is our watershed healthy?
Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:45 AM

By Ryan Mapes

Paulding SWCD ditch

maintenance supervisor

A watershed is the area of land where all the water that is under it or drains off of it goes into the same place. John Wesley Powell, scientist geographer, put it best when he said that a watershed is “that area of land, a bounded hydrologic system, within which all living things are inextricably linked by their common water course and where, as humans settled, simple logic demanded that they become part of a community.”

Watersheds come in all shapes and sizes and cross county, state, and national boundaries. In the continental United States, there are 2,110 watersheds; including Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico, there are 2,267 watersheds.

Good day, bad day
Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:45 AM


By Nancy Whitaker

Everyone has “good days” and “bad days.” There are those wonderful days when things fall right into place and the whole world seems great.

Then there are days when unexpected things arise that may bring you a change of plans, tears or just plain frustration. I just experienced one of those “bad days” and am optimistically glad that all days are not like that one.

The history beneath our feet
Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:44 AM

The history beneath our feet

By Kim Sutton

President, John Paulding Historical Society

Eight days ago, I received an email from Arc of Appalachia Preserve System, a charitable nonprofit organization, who manages and stewards 14 preserves in Ohio. I signed up for their emails while on a camping trip to Paint Creek State Park. We had spent the day sightseeing and hiking trails in the area and we happened to run into the director, Nancy Stranahan, at the Highlands Nature Sanctuary. She and I hit it off immediately. Our love for nature and history evaporated any awkwardness or shyness that can occur when you start a conversation with a stranger.

American robin: Think spring
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 9:24 PM

By Mark Holtsberry

Education specialist Paulding SWCD

American robins are common sights on lawns across North America, where you often see them in the spring tugging earthworms out of the ground.

Robins are popular birds for their warm orange breast, cheery song and early appearance at the end of the winter. Though they’re familiar town and city birds, American robins are at home in wilder areas, too, including mountains, forests and Alaskan wilderness.

An Alaskan robin can produce three successful broods in one year. On average, though, only 25 percent of those fledged young survive to November. From that point on, about half of the robins alive in any year will make it till the next. The entire population turns over on average every six years.

You have been chopped
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 9:24 PM


By Nancy Whitaker

If you have access to the Food Network, perhaps you have watched the show, “Chopped.” It is one of my favorite shows and features a cooking competition.

In the beginning of the show, they bring out four contestants who are usually all connected with the food industry. Usually there are chefs, food designers, cafeteria workers, firemen and anyone else who thinks they can win $10,000 with their cooking skills.

They begin each competition by giving each of the four competitors a basket of four usually strange ingredients to use to prepare a dish. There are three rounds: appetizer, main course and dessert.

It's good to be back home again
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 9:23 PM

By Jim Langham

John Denver’s old classic, “It’s Good to Be Back Home Again,” stirred in my heart early last week as I was finally able to walk on a trail at my beloved “get away,” Limberlost Loblolly, one of the stomping grounds of famed Indiana author, Gene Stratton Porter.

“The Lob,” as I like to refer to it, has become my refuge, source of hundreds of nature pictures, learning opportunity for birding and bird calls, classroom for lessons from nature and primarily the sanctuary where I escape to be quiet, still my thoughts and totally listen to nature and its Creator.

It is the home of the, “Song of the Cardinal,” many of which I have seen this spring. Two weeks ago I saw 11 robins in one cluster.

Buds are starting to make their appearance on the prairie docs, asters and an endless flow of wildflowers that create a floral blanket that I often refer to as nature’s private prayer shawl that God drapes over my heart when I stop on a trail.

I spy with my little eye
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 9:23 PM

By Kylee Baumle

Spring is almost here.  The calendar says so, even if the weather doesn’t. But Mother Nature always shows up for the party, even if she’s late.

By this time, I’m getting anxious for all the telltale signs of her arrival and thankfully, there are many.  If I don’t see the snowdrops because they’re still buried under snow, I can look somewhere else and see the spikes of crocus poking out of the icy ground.  (How do they do that?)

The plants out in the greenhouse and in our house have started actively growing again after slowing down quite a bit during the winter.  Lots of tender new leaves are popping out and some are even flowering, due to the lengthening daylight hours.