Are We There Yet?

Are We There Yet?

Students learn 'life lesson' helping tornado victims

The day after the Nov. 17 tornado ripped through Champaign and Vermilion counties, several farmers stopped by Armstrong Township High School.

They asked if they might get some help from the student FFA group to clean up debris strewn around the fields outside Gifford. Principal Darren Loschen and his staff quickly agreed.

In the end, it's all just 'stuff'

What would you take?

With minutes — even seconds — to choose, what mementos of your life, your children’s lives, would you save?

As we prepared to take cover during last week’s tornadoes, I was more focused than usual on that question. This fast-moving storm felt different somehow, more threatening, with warnings all around us.

What a dander, er dandy, idea

We have been pet-free for several years, much to my children’s dismay.

After our last remaining cat died in 2007, we took a break.

Excuse rolled over onto excuse: We’ll get a new one when the kids are a little older ... after we get back from vacation ... as soon as we get through this busy period at work.

Truth is, I was tired of hairballs and litter boxes.

When did duct tape become an art form?

There once was a girl with a duct-tape dress. She had a matching duct-tape hat.

She sat in a duct-tape chair by her duct-tape rug. She had duct-tape flowers in her hair and duct-tape shoes on her feet and carried a duct-tape wallet in her duct-tape purse.

Fairy tale? No, it’s all too real. Just check Pinterest.

Feeling stressed? Check out 'What She Said'

So we all need inspiration, right?

Football on a smaller 'Field of Dreams'

You may remember a certain homemade baseball field I wrote about in early August, built on several empty lots in Savoy’s Prairie Fields subdivision by five enterprising Little Leaguers.

Since then, “Prairie Field” has shrunk a bit. And it’s now a gridiron.

The 'Mini-Mes' who complete us

Note: This column originally ran in the Sept. 17 News-Gazette.

I came home the other night to find my computer full of links to sports stats and online draft information.

This is not unusual; I have lived with a sportswriter for almost 20 years.

Confessions of a sentimental clutter-holic

My name is Julie, and I am a clutter-holic.

I have written several times about the clutter pileup in my life. I blame it on my work (paper-intensive), my children (megastuff), my schedule (frenetic) and life in general.

Field of dreams: Baseball the way it was meant to be

Picture this: Summer day, 70 degrees and sunny, a group of boys playing baseball on a homemade field, radio blaring in the background.

No uniforms, cleats or coaches in sight. Just a bunch of kids making up rules and running basepaths outlined in spray paint, with a plywood backstop.

Are We There Yet: A piercing dilemma

Signs that our children have entered the tween/teen years: dinner conversations include talk of piercings and tattoos.

So far it’s just curiosity. The idea of more needles poking into their skin doesn’t appeal to them. But it’s clear that pierced ears are on our horizon.