Too good to be true

Rick Perry wants to change the Constitution. The Governor of Texas announced his candidacy for president a few weeks ago, going up against Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, and many others.

When Perry was first introduced as a candidate, the media painted a pretty picture of a God-Loving, charismatic man who wanted to do something good for our great country. But once again, it is too good to be true.

Rick Perry wants to change the Constitution. I think it takes a lot of guts to even suggest something that drastic. And maybe it should be looked at, but is it really a smart way to start a campaign for the presidency of the United States?

If we look at the article that this statement appears in, we can see that some of the changes are drastic. According to Chris Moody, Perry not only wants to abolish taxes and limit terms and power to judges, he also wants to make abortion and gay marriage illegal in all 50 states.

A bit extreme?

Many people think so. Comments from this article range from agreeing with him to calling his an idiot and a hypocrite. One even person pointed out that those things he is now against he once voted on to keep.

Yes, I admit that when he first came into the spotlight there was hope that maybe this man could do wonders for our country, but I have since changed my mind. I don’t want someone as my president who is so extreme and closed-minded that he wouldn’t listen to what the people want. He is doing what so many other candidates are doing; only thinking of himself and how he thinks the country should be run. Has anyone even asked us, the people of the United States?

I think we really need to look at the backgrounds of all the candidates and see who is really for us, the people. A good website for this is at

Let’s be intelligent when we pick our next president. The future of our country depends on it.




What a week …. 14

Week 14 wasn’t nearly as difficult as it could have been.

I started classes last week. That in itself would have been enough. But then my boyfriend turned 50, which started a whole other chain of events.

He didn’t want a party or any kind of fuss made over him. I don’t think it was just because he didn’t want to be reminded that he is half a century old; he’s just naturally that way. So how could I make this birthday special?

I had to get creative, so I made him a present. I took all the skills I had learned and put them to good use. Jeff comes from a small family, with most of them living out of town. I thought fun it would be to get everyone’s help in making him a “card” for his birthday and sent out e-mails and asked for old photos and memories about him. I used InDesign to construct the card, which tuned out being more a book, decorated and had Office Max put it in booklet form.

It turned out better than I expected. And he loved it.

I also took him to the General Store Restaurant in Stone City.  The restaurant is situated on the banks of the Wapsipinicon River. The day was gray and rainy, but we didn’t care; though we couldn’t sit out on their deck, we had a great time anyway. The old building is constructed with limestone from the local quarry, giving the restaurant an interesting feel to it. The food was good and the staff was friendly. When we got home, there was a “singing” balloon and birthday cake waiting for him at his front door, courtesy of my daughter.

He told me that it was his best birthday yet. Wow … that’ll  be hard to beat next year.

Between homework and working on the Time’s website, I also worked on my own paper and website this week. I also met with the principals of the elementary schools in Hiawatha. I figured that because I’m including an education section in my paper, it would be a good idea to get to know the schools. The principals were eager to learn more about the paper and had some great ideas for content.

Matt Nesslage collects for MDA at the intersection of Boyson and Robin roads in Hiawatha. (Photo by Cynthia Petersen)

Not only was I able to get out and do some PR for the paper, I was also able to write a few articles for the website, including one about the Hiawatha firefighters.  They were out this weekend collecting money for Muscular Dystrophy. I thought it would be a good photo opportunity, so even though it was raining Saturday morning, I grabbed my camera and went out in search of a great photo. I found them, and it turned out great.

This week, I also remembered my dad, who died three years ago on Sept. 6, and attended a cheerleading practice for my 5-year-old granddaughter. It just shows me that a lot can happen in a week, all very different things, but all important, just the same.

The Hiawatha Advocate

Ice cream makes everything better

My granddaughter was a little upset that her big sister went to Adventureland with her other grandmother yesterday. After talking to my granddaughter on the phone, the solution was obvious; we need to go get ice cream.

Lily enjoys a Dairy Queen (with sprinkles!)

Ice cream is one of those things that just naturally makes everything OK. Whether it’s a skinned knee or a bruised ego, ice cream somehow takes the sting out of whatever is bothering us.

Ice cream is a great comfort food. It’s often portrayed in movies and TV shows as a cure-all for a heartache and goes well a good movie and a good cry. But ice cream is great anytime.

Ice cream goes great with cake, pie, cookies, or as a sundae. It’s good with fruit or sauce, or as my dad would serve it,  heaping high in a bowl, spilling over the sides. (My dad really liked ice cream!)

Though the rise in selection of ice creams can make it difficult to choose, vanilla is still high on many people’s list as ultimate favorite. It can be eaten as it is, or doctored up with chocolate, strawberry, or caramel syrup.

My personal favorite is blackberry ice cream, but I find that it’s getting harder to find. Ice cream companies want to add chocolate and nuts to my ice cream, but I’m more of a Plain Jane. I can do without the sprinkles and cookie bits; just give me a plain cone and I’m good to go.

Many companies have come and gone in recent years, trying to gain the king position in the ice cream world. However, there are only a few that can actually say they are worthy; Dairy Queen, Ben & Jerry’s, Blue Bunny, and Coldstone Creamery all have a place in my vocabulary.

Though I really have to watch how much ice cream I eat these days, comforting my grandkids is always a good excuse.