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TALES OF OUR TIMES: How Safe Is ‘Safe?’

on February 27, 2015 - 9:45am

New Mexico Citizens
for Clean Air & Water

How Safe is “Safe?”

Though less gripping than murder scenes, news stories often cover safety issues. The pattern is standard: The first expert claims that something is not safe and another says the safety is top-notch.

Are airlines safe? Is a new medicine safe? Are we safe from terrorists?

The two experts hammer away at their unerring, inscrutable points, then go their separate ways, having said nothing useful about safety. 

What does it mean to be safe or unsafe? Let’s begin with something as safe as walking to work.


Solo Traveler: Zoos Around The World

on February 26, 2015 - 7:57am
A coati (or coatimundi) at the zoo in Belize. Photo by Sherry Hardage
A spider monkey at the Belize Zoo. Photo by Sherry Hardage
Solo Traveler
Zoos around the World

While on a family trip to the Dallas zoo, in the late 60s, my father spotted a man cleaning out the yak enclosure. He asked if he could have a small bag of yak poop. The man looked at him in horror, as if he imagined those little round balls might end up as a joke in somebody’s spaghetti sauce.

I was in junior high at the time, and got away from that conversation as fast as I could.

Hannemann’s Music Corner: The Sustain

on February 25, 2015 - 10:29am
Hannemann’s Music Corner
Los Alamos

The Sustain

One of the truly neat things about the guitar is its natural sustain. Play a note and then sit back and listen to it roll.

There are very few instruments that have this characteristic, the two most notable being the piano and the orchestral harp. The downside to the natural sustain of the piano is that it can be thunderous.

This Week At The Reel Deal

on February 25, 2015 - 8:50am
Reel Deal Theater

We had 25 contenders and only one winner for our second annual Reel Deal Academy Award Contest. If Boyhood would have won instead of Birdman, I would have had to award about 20 six-month passes.

Birdman, the quirky but original film was a bit of surprise but maybe the Academy is looking for original, non-sequel films. This is a good thing as the days of four, five or even six sequals are getting real old.

Having said that I am also convinced the Academy is becoming more disconnected with movie patrons.

Real Estate Corner: 10 Tips To Purchasing A New Home

on February 24, 2015 - 11:33am
Real Estate Corner
10 Tips to Purchasing a New Home

Buying a new home is exciting and a big commitment, both emotionally and financially. These 10 steps of the home buying process can help you make the best decision possible so you can purchase with confidence:.

  • Step 1: Find a Mortgage Lender. Your mortgage lender can pre-qualify you for a mortgage and provide with the price range you should be looking at in your home search. A pre-qualification letter will be issued to you by your mortgage lender. 
  • Step 2: Find the right Real Estate Professional. A Realtor ® can

How The Hen House Turns—Chicken Moxie

on February 24, 2015 - 10:58am
How the Hen House Turns
Chicken Moxie
By Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.

Last week I reviewed our experience building the Hen House. What amazed me then, and still resonates now, is how the birds adapted to our ideas.

They laid eggs in the nest boxes. They entered the House at dusk and sat on the roosts to sleep. They drank from water jugs (cut down gallon plastic jugs), re-supplied their gizzards with oyster shells to grind their food (LA tuff doesn’t provide good hard pebbles for grit.), and ate their lay pellets laced with cracked corn.

Over its 40 years of intermittent occupancy,

Food on the Hill: A Lighter Eggplant Parmigiana

on February 24, 2015 - 10:37am
FOOD on the HILL

I know that if I ask the husband what he wants for dinner, he is likely to say “vegetables in curry” or “eggplant parm.” (Either answer, of course, is better than “I don’t care,” which I find annoying and unhelpful, even if his intention is to convey that he’s flexible, or something.)  

Although I’ve been cooking since I was a child, I had never prepared eggplant parmigiana before our marriage. When I did finally try to make it for dinner, I was put off by the amount of cheese, bread crumbs, frying oil and active time necessary to prepare it.

Yang: Smart Technologies…May Need Some EQ

on February 23, 2015 - 3:43pm
Yang: Smart Technologies…May Need Some EQ (Emotional Intelligence)
Los Alamos

There is always tension between wanting to be apart from others, asserting our individual identity, and desiring to belong to a collective, be it an organization or a culture. And this tension is more evident and acceptable in some societies than in others. 

For instance, in Chinese culture, the desire to be more individualistic is certainly not encouraged and often actively suppressed, whereas in the States, coexistence of individualism and belonging seems to be ubiquitous.

Smart Design With Suzette: Wall Art

on February 22, 2015 - 9:23am
Courtesy/Suzette Fox
Smart Design with Suzette
Wall Art

Thomas Merton said, “Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.” Indeed, as a society, we are moved by great pieces of art. But has anyone ever tried to hang it?

Have you heard, “Hang art so that the center of the piece or grouping is at eye level?” But eye level is different for everyone. It’s not like we are all the same size!

Hanging Height

There’s no real hard and fast rules about the height you should hang pictures on the wall, but there are some guidelines and starting places

Coaching Café: Self-fate

on February 22, 2015 - 9:07am
Coaching Café

In one of the latest Coaching Café at Legacy Now Lived™, we discussed self-mastery and how by resonating at a high level of energy, we can oftentimes attract what we really do want into our lives.

What holds us back from living the lives we desire? Some people attribute the lack of having what they want to fate – that their lives are somehow “meant to be” the way they are. Many people don’t like the concept of fate, however, because it negates free will.

Cinema Cindy Reviews 'Kingsman: The Secret Service'

on February 22, 2015 - 8:42am
Los Alamos

“Kingsman: The Secret Service” is an “R” rated, comic book style movie, featuring exquisitely dressed gentleman secret agents and an evil genius villain.

The secret agents have ingenious weapons inspired by James Bond movies. The evil genius uses cell phones in his attempt to control the world.

If you know all that before going to see the film, it might help. The “R” rating is mostly for violence, much of which is way over the top, reference to sex, and rough language. The film is not so much silly as it is absurd in its tone.

Reasons to see the film

Pastor Granillo: Prayerfully Human

on February 22, 2015 - 8:35am
Los Alamos
Praying is one those things that, if we are honest, most of us feel or have felt very uncomfortable about doing, especially in public.
I remember the first time I prayed with my wife Trina; it felt about as natural as square dancing did in junior high. Perhaps this is because we’re not exactly sure what prayer is really for or how it is supposed to be done.

I mean, if God knows everything, then why do we need to pray? And if He doesn’t, then does He really have the power to do anything anyway? What are we allowed to pray for?

PEEC Amateur Naturalist: Caring For Open Space

on February 20, 2015 - 7:05am
PEEC Amateur Naturalist
Caring for Open Space

In 1942 the Manhattan Project laboratory was located at Los Alamos on the Pajarito Plateau; there it would be desirably situated on top of a set of mesas separated by canyons. The steep canyon walls and isolated location enhanced the possibilities for secrecy and security.

The geographic isolation of Los Alamos has meant that its people live in a spectacular natural setting unspoiled by extensive commercial and residential development. The population has remained stable at approximately 18,000 since the 1980 census.


Mrs. Beadsley’s Jewel Box: Look At The Markings

on February 20, 2015 - 6:55am
Mrs. Beadsley Vintage Jewelry

This month I’d like to discuss the importance of markings on vintage jewelry. I talk to many people who own, collect and use vintage jewelry in their craft and jewelry making endeavors.

I ask them what markings they find on this jewelry and they tell me they never thought to look for markings. The markings you find on old jewelry can reveal much, such as where the piece was made, when it was created, the artist or company that made it and the metal content.

To find the markings on an old piece of jewelry generally requires a loupe

This Week At The Reel Deal

on February 18, 2015 - 7:54am
Reel Deal Theater

The Second Annual Reel Deal Theater Academy Award Contest: Any person predicting the winner in all of the following categories will win a six-month pass to the movies of their choice at the Reel Deal Theater.

The categories are: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Actress in a Supporting Role, and Best Animated Feature Film. The winner or winners must submit their predictions to me before noon MST Sunday Feb. 22 at It doesn’t hurt to try and Good Luck!

This Friday we are opening McFarland

Real Estate Corner: 10 Tips To Get Your Home Ready For Sale

on February 17, 2015 - 7:48am
Real Estate Corner
10 Tips to Get your Home Ready for Sale

Spring is nearly upon us and some of you have decided to sell your home. So now is the time for you to help potential buyers capture their vision of living in your home.

Take advantage of 10 tips that will help you put your “for sale” sign up sooner and get a better return on your investment.

The following tips will help make positive first impressions:

  1. Curb Appeal: The first impression of your home is when a potential buyer pulls into the driveway of your home.

Food on the Hill: King Cake

on February 17, 2015 - 7:09am
Food on the Hill:

On March 2, 1699, adventurer and fur trader Pierre Le Moyne D’Iberville set up camp along the Mississippi River near the present day location of New Orleans. Le Moyne D’Iberville was leading an expedition for the French crown to find the mouth of the Mississippi and build a fort to preclude use by other nations.

The next day was Mardi Gras, and the story is that Le Moyne D’Iberville introduced the festivities associated with French Carnival celebrations to the New Orleans area, where they have been observed with gusto ever since.

How The Hen House Turns: Building It

on February 17, 2015 - 7:00am
How the Hen House Turns
By Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.
Building It

In the early days, circa 1977, whenever I was feeling low, I would wander down the hill and sit in the chicken pen. The chickens didn’t mind. They knew me pretty well. After checking me out to see if I’d brought them some table scraps, they would go back to their pecking around the pen yard.

Chickens are good at accepting whatever fate hands them. They didn’t mind if I decided not to let them out into the greater back yard. They let me sit in peace.

Smart Design With Suzette: Front Door Curb Appeal

on February 15, 2015 - 11:46am
Courtesy/Suzette Fox
Smart Design with Suzette 
Front Door Curb Appeal

Whether you are selling your home or want a fresh look, your front door needs to be inviting. A buyer will judge whether they want to buy a home within 15 seconds of walking in the door. If the curb appeal doesn’t get them in the front door – your house will not sell and you’ll hurt your property value.

Taking on the entire curb appeal of your home including the lawn, landscaping and design could take up to a month or more to undertake.

Chief Stone: Precautions To Prevent Fall Injuries

on February 11, 2015 - 2:40pm
Division Chief, Emergency Medical Services
Los Alamos County Fire Department

In January, LAFD treated 140 patients and 36 of them had injuries from a fall.

According to the CDC, this is a major problem seen across the country. In 2013 2.5 million nonfatal falls among older adults were treated in the emergency room, with a direct medical cost of approximately $30 billion.

Solo Traveler: Passports And Money

on February 11, 2015 - 11:30am
Sherry Hardage with her safety first purse with zippers and a cut-proof strap. Courtesy photo
Solo Traveler
Passports and Money

My friend Monica recently wrote to me about her upcoming trip to England. It will be her first trip overseas. I couldn’t help her with suggestions about things to see or do in England since I’ve only been to Scotland. But I was able to give some advice on security.

With travel apps, travel sites, bloggers rambling on about their adventures, guide books, and a plethora of travel related magazines, it seems like any needed answer would be

Pegg: Beginning Weight Training

on February 11, 2015 - 8:20am
By Kent Pegg
Los Alamos

Whether you’re trying to rehabilitate an injury, build your bone density, lose weight, or increase your functional strength, weight training should be an essential component of your exercise routine. If you’re just starting out, consider checking with your physician, especially if you have any medical concerns, and then get started.

You’ll want to start slow. Begin performing one or two exercises for each body part and start with two sets of 12 repetitions for each exercise.

Food on the Hill: Spinach Balls

on February 10, 2015 - 8:41am
Food on the Hill

“Knife and Fork,”  “Sip and Sup,”  “Circle Supper” - all names for monthly dinner parties organized by a volunteer coordinator at the church who randomly mixes and re-mixes couples and singles into groups of 8-10. We meet at a different residence on the first Sunday evening of each month. The hosts provide beverages and appetizers; each of the other participants brings one of the other courses: entrée, bread or starch, vegetable or salad, dessert.

Smart Design With Suzette: Powder Rooms

on February 8, 2015 - 9:52am
Smart Design with Suzette
Powder Rooms

Thanks to its petite size – 4 by 5 feet on average – a powder room can be one of the least expensive rooms in the house to renovate.

Powder rooms are unique in the sense that they are not bound to any other room's design. They are a great place to experiment with bolder colors, patterns and textures. Adding some fun and personality to the powder room can create an unexpected design surprise for guests.

Photo by Suzette Fox

Here's how to remodel your powder room so you're never afraid to say, "Yes!" when someone asks, "Do

Rev. Mackey: Church Used To Be Center Of Community

on February 8, 2015 - 9:32am
Los Alamos

Church attendance in the United States has been on the decline now for about 20 years. There have been many studies conducted which have tried to solve this problem; however, there may be more than one answer.

The church used to be the center of the community. Many immigrant populations used the church as their anchor in this new world, a place to belong and restart a life which was lost moving across the ocean. The early churches in America provided familiarity in a strange land. They provided commonality and stability during times of change.