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Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023
Good morning to you!

Welcome to an extra edition of the mailbag where you will find some of the comments, questions and ideas sent recently by subscribers of this newsletter or our publications. They are edited for space and clarity.

“Shane, your article on snow boots reminded me of a carefree childhood filled with the enjoyment of fun in the snow, just like you described (Snow boots, Nov. 28, 2023). As I've gotten older, I've discovered that my enjoyment of snow has decreased proportionally with my increased need to drive in it. You might have mentioned that an industrious kid with a shovel could make a few bucks clearing sidewalks. When I was in grade school, the girls' dress code was strictly dresses. No pants. But the girls would bring a pair of blue jeans to school to wear at recess during the winter months, and remove them when they came back inside to class. We boys were sternly warned that, if we came inside from recess and our pants were wet from the snow, we would have to wear a pair of girl's jeans while ours dried out. We were usually pretty careful — it would have been the ultimate humiliation to wear a girl's jeans.” - Bob

In my efforts to avoid this sort of sexual discrimination, I often encourage my wife and daughters to shovel snow. - Shane

“In the late 1950s, our snow boots were zipped and had fake fur all around the top (Snow boots, Nov. 28, 2023). I don't remember what my boots were like when I was a little person, but I remember being covered head to toe in snow and my mother taking a floor broom all over me before she would let me in the house. Then I remember resting my wet socks, still being on me, on the top of the coal furnace's heat register. Oh, the smell of wet wool getting dried out, but it felt good.” - Margaret

Taking a floor broom all over you? Are you sure you weren’t on fire from being too close to the coal furnace? - Shane

“I say the rosary out loud (that helps me to focus by saying and hearing it) while doing stepping exercises (Habits, rituals and routines, Dec. 4, 2023). That takes me about 20 minutes, and I do it in my basement. I usually work up a sweat after about seven minutes. The reason for the basement is it is cooler most of the year.” - George

This I have to see. Send a video, please. - Shane

“For probably 25 years, I have had the same cold cereal for breakfast six days a week, but I will change given the opportunity (Habits, rituals and routines, Dec. 4, 2023). At supper time, I have a most frequent repeat snack food list but seldom eat at the same time and departing from the list or changing the time can happen almost without thought. Having shared my peculiarities, it is fair to say my wife (who does not read your column — nothing personal) is a huge creature of habit. Much of how she lives is by doing the same things, at the same time, on the same days. That said, she does not tolerate eating the same food items for meals twice in the same week. She requires variety of menu!” - Chuck

Sounds like you are venturing out a little, Chuck. Your wife needs to do the same, and she should start by reading the Daily Umbrella. - Shane

Have a thoughtful Thursday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman 

President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

View Shane Goodman's archived columns from past issues here.

CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines®
The polls have closed and a record number of readers have cast their votes in the latest CITYVIEW'S Best Of Des Moines readers' poll — the metro's original and largest poll of its kind.
Winners will be announced in the February 2024 issue of CITYVIEW!

Your Clear Mortgage forecast

Warming up the rest of the week, with breezy conditions at times. Light rain is possible Friday night and light snow on Saturday as temperatures cool through the weekend.

For help with pre-approvals or refinancing, get in touch with Originating Branch Manager Carrie Hansen at carrie.mortgage.

Featured home for sale
Attention, Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.
1324 Loomis Ave.
Des Moines, IA 50315
Run don't walk to this timeless Mid-century modern masterpiece. A two story haven where sophistication meets simplicity. Nestled on a tranquil cul de sac, this architectural gem is a must see. You will notice the brand new 25 driveway, retaining wall and front door patio, perfect place for an evening cocktail.
See More Homes For Sale

CBC reported last week that half of Canada's Christmas tree crop has been lost in the last ten years. Maybe canceling controlled burns was not Justin Trudeau's best idea? Balsam Lives Matter.

Kraft is launching a new macaroni & "not-cheese" product in several forms. It is plant based and not-dairy.

Today brings a pop up Christmas market to Wallace House (756 16th St., Des Moines) There will be lots of Iowa-grown products.

— Jim Duncan, jd91446@aol.com


FROM KCCI: Remembering Nile Kinnick on the anniversary of his iconic Heisman speech

ADEL, Iowa — It was Dec. 6, 1939, when Adel native and Hawkeyes football star Nile Kinnick received the Heisman Trophy. Kinnick delivered an acceptance speech that night at the Downtown Athletic Club in New York that has become part of Hawkeyes lore. The speech is now played over the loudspeaker before each home game at Kinnick Stadium. ... READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: Decrease in number of Christmas tree farms to cause a shortage of trees

FAIRBANK, Iowa — The drought has impacted the Christmas tree crop in two major ways, according to the President of the Iowa Christmas Tree Association. The first is a more direct effect — there not being a sufficient amount of water for the crop. ..READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: 'That's what being Hmong is about': Springing forward as Hmong New Year season wraps up

Hmong Iowans who have made history in the Hawkeye state like Doua Lor, believe Hmong history is directly connected to where the community is heading in the future.....READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

Sports highlights
NCAA Women's Basketball: Caitlin Clark surpasses 3,000 points on historic night. Iowa 67 Iowa State 58
From the Iowa Living magazines

Vehicles close to Andreas’ heart

By Rich Wicks

On a recent crisp fall day, Scott Andreas of Alleman was preparing to put two vehicles away for the winter. His 1962 Allis Chalmers tractor was headed to the backyard to be covered and protected from the elements, while his 1967 Dodge Coronet R/T was to be driven to a storage facility. But Andreas always has room in his heart for these vehicles, and he explains why.

“That tractor belonged to my wife’s grandfather. He bought it new in 1962,” Andreas says.

After his death, the family was helping to deal with the various items in the estate, and nobody wanted the tractor, so it looked to be heading for the junkyard. Andreas recalls the tractor was sitting in a backyard with a dead battery. So, he charged the battery.

“It fired right up. So, we loaded it up on a trailer, and home it came,” he says.

And it still runs.

Read the rest of the story in the North Polk Living magazine!

Weekly Fuel Report

The price of regular unleaded gasoline fell 4 cents, averaging $2.87 across Iowa according to AAA. The national average on Wednesday was $3.22, down 3 cents from last week’s price.

Retail diesel prices in Iowa fell 10 cents this week with a statewide average of $3.97. One year ago, diesel prices averaged $4.72 in Iowa. The current Iowa diesel price is 20 cents lower than the national average of $4.17.

Wholesale ethanol held steady and is currently priced at $2.16.
Propane prices rose 1 cent with a statewide average of $1.56 per gallon.

Home heating oil prices fell 19 cents, with a statewide average of $3.32 per gallon.

Natural gas prices fell 15 cents at the Henry Hub reporting site and are currently priced at $2.67/MMbtu

Tips for saving energy on the road or at home are available at energy.gov and fueleconomy.gov.

Birthdays and notables!

These celebrities were born on this date: Asian Doll, Larry Bird, Aaron Carter, C Thomas Howell, Jasmine Villegas, Yuzuru Hanyu, Terrell Owens, Emily Browning, Pete Alonso

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to: tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Morning chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:

How are golf balls like eggs? THEY ARE WHITE, COME IN A DOZEN, AND YOU HAVE TO BUY NEW ONES EACH WEEK! Or, if handled well with spawn a birdie! Rex Post. Thanks for sending in answers Gail Tomlinson, Carolyn Rogers, William Snyder.

Today's riddle

Where do owls on a budget like to go shopping?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com


To advertise in this daily newsletter, contact Jolene Goodman at jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com, or call 515-953-4822 ext. 319.

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