It may come as a shocker that I was not a big fan of “Tangled,” Disney’s last princess movie released in 2010. The music was contrived, the humor lacked the Disney flair and the moral messages were shoved down the audience’s throat with a whimsical, musical sledgehammer. When first seeing trailers for “Frozen” I was fearful that Disney Animation had a similar cinematic adventure on its hands. Read More>>>Knitting started as men's work November 30, 2013 • Robin Stroot
How often do you see a man who knits? I can honestly say that the only man I’ve ever seen knitting is in a photograph of former NFL player Rosie Grier. In the 1960s, Grier was also known for his love of needlepoint. He was famous because men just didn’t make needlepoint or knit (at least in the 1960s).Read More>>>Years later, it's coffee time again December 7, 2013 • Joyce Ore
There was a time nearly half a century ago when I met with friends several times a week in the cozy atmosphere of a kitchen to discuss the trials and tribulations of life — actually, everybody’s life.
With coffee in hand, women received an education unlike any taught in a classroom. It was around the kitchen tables of America that the wife and mother shared the secrets of white diapers, the latest tummy exercises and whose husband’s car was parked in Norma Jean’s block the preceding Tuesday afternoon. Read More>>>Official starts to Christmas season never stops December 6, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
I’m so confused. I was watching one of the TV Christmas specials a couple of nights ago. It was the one where they lit the giant Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center in New York. After the thousands of lights on the tree were illuminated, one of the hosts of the program proclaimed that they had thus “officially begun the Christmas season.” Read More>>>Pageant lights up bare-bones Christmas December 5, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
The first column in December is usually the toughest one to write. My body is still recovering from vats of food inhaled during a decadent Thanksgiving.
The house is eerily quiet after a raucous visit from family members we see far too rarely. We have yet to hunt down a Christmas tree, and commercials on every channel scream “BUY ME!” with the ring-ding-a-ding subtlety of a bomb blast. Read More>>> Sorting yarn and other craft thoughts November 30, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Should I sort yarn by color, type of fiber or yarn weight? I finally decided that yarn should definitely be sorted by weight. I knitted something and grabbed more yarn of the same color and didn’t realize it was just enough of a different weight until I had knitted several rows and realized the gauge was different than the first skein of white yarn I used on previous rows. I had to rip the mistake rows out and find another skein of the rightgauged yarn to finish the project.Read More>>>Daughters' good work impressive to mom November 30, 2013 • Denise Anderson
After 12 years of having kids in college, my girls are all educated and have started their careers. Taylor is teaching eighthgrade science in Texas, Kinley manages an Applebee’s restaurant in Lawrence, Kan., and Giselle ... well, she’s working in the agricultural field. Read More>>>Missing the leftovers November 30, 2013 • Joyce Ore
It’s the holidays when we realize how time has changed our lives. It doesn’t seem all that long ago when I was up at the crack of dawn dicing celery and onion and browning the mixture in butter before tossing it with bread cubes and herbs for the stuffing for our Thanksgiving turkey. Read More>>>'Catching Fire' even better than original 'Hunger Games' November 29, 2013 • Patrick White
Reading is becoming increasingly more difficult when the films based on the literature are so good. “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” directed by Francis Lawrence is one of the best-made young adult novel adaptations. Lawrence has captured the world that director Gary Ross (“The Hunger Games”) established, but this time around Panem is dank and grittier while the Capitol still shines with abundant colors and Seussian lunacy.Read More>>>Call me nostalgic, but don't call me collect November 29, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
Apparently, I was hit with a wave of nostalgia last week. Moods like that can hit at any time and be triggered in any number of ways. It could be looking back at the days when Black Friday occurred on a Friday — and started at a decent hour. And wasn’t pumped up with artificial shortages and huge price cuts, but instead just a desire by some to get out of the house and away from the relatives.Read More>>>Good work surface makes crafting easier November 23, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Be sure to keep a tape measure handy when shopping for a crafting table and/or chair. You can have all the right materials, patterns and pieces to your craft project. However, a good work surface can mean the difference between enjoying your craft time or deciding to give up on your favorite craft. Read More>>>A tropical Ore get-together is one for the ages November 23, 2013 • Joyce Ore
Every 40 years or so, the immediate Ore family get together. The last time was in the late ‘60s when we packed three small girls into our new Plymouth and headed to California. Earlier this month we did it again, this time we left our respective homes in Missouri, South Dakota, Colorado and Nebraska and gathered together in Kawai, that stunning paradise in the Pacific. Read More>>>Question of the day: Where were you? November 22, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
Let’s start this week by answering the question of the day. It’s a question that comes around every year, but has added emphasis this year. It was 50 years ago today that President John F. Kennedy was killed while riding in a motorcade in Dallas. It was a “where-were-you-when” moment in history. The kind of event so monumental that it’s etched in your memory where you were when you heard the news.Read More>>>Plugged pipe propels peels in perilous places November 21, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
Writer’s note: A friend has mentioned this column each fall since it ran in the Hastings Tribune on December 1, 2011. Perhaps I’m not the only one who stirs up chaos just before Thanksgiving feasters are expected to arrive. That thought brings me joy, so I’m running it again in honor of my fellow messmakers. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Read More>>> 'Thor 2' wavers between comedy, drama November 16, 2013 • Patrick White
You can either choose to accept “Thor: The Dark World” as a zany, sometimes schizophrenic piece of superhero filmmaking or dismiss it as complete nonsense. On my first view of the film I chose to look at it as the latter, but after consulting a fellow film critic, Ryan Syrek of Omaha’s The Reader, I appreciated the film for its madness and constant tonal shift from comedy-action to Shakespearean drama. Read More>>>Drop stitch way to add color November 16, 2013 • Robin Stroot
One technique of drop stitch knitting is a way to add color without carrying bobbins of color along each knitted row of your project.
You spend much of your knitting time making sure stitches are secured on the needle. Any dropped stitch must be dealt with immediately. To purposely drop the stitch and let it run down the length of the stitching was a scary endeavor for me.Read More>>>Mabel goes berserk November 16, 2013 • Denise Anderson
They always called Alvin’s wife “mildmannered Mabel.” She was the type of farm lady we all know and love.
Let’s get the debate started early this year. Well, now that I think of it, it might not be all that early, since the topic of the debate has been slowly but surely overwhelming us. Prior to hitting the keyboard to write this week’s column, I was in my usual TV-watching mode.Read More>>>Squanto saved Pilgrims, who knew squat November 14, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
Squanto is a great name, prompting an instant smile each time you hear it. Repeat it and tell me I’m wrong: Squanto. Squanto. Squanto. See? I’ll bet you’re smiling. Read More>>> 'Thor' shifts between drama, comedy November 9, 2013 • Patrick White
This weekend’s release of “Thor: The Dark World” marks the return of the god of thunder. This will be the second film released in Phase Two of the Marvel powerhouse franchise. Phase One came to an end with last year’s “The Avengers” and Phase Two was kicked off with highoctane adventure and comedy in Shane Black’s “Iron Man 3.” Director Alan Taylor (“Game of Thrones”) hopes to continue Marvel’s streak with both blockbuster gains and engaging filmmaking. You can read my review for “Thor: The Dark World” next weekend.Read More>>>Kids get crafty with fleece fringe scarves November 9, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Ihave been working with a great group of students who are eager to learn crafts. The class is an opportunity for willing students to experiment with different crafts and see which craft is one they would like to continue working on in the future. Read More>>>Livestock cloning not worth the hype November 9, 2013 • Denise Anderson
Iran into Alvin the other day, and he was raving about the latest in hog production techniques, but I couldn’t understand why he was so excited.
Following my annual flu shot, I spent the better part of the afternoon trying to remove a plastic bandage the nurse placed on my arm. My goal was to remove this with most of my skin intact. My endeavor was unsuccessful. Read More>>>Darn right it was loud after Hail Mary November 8, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
Some things are inevitable. They can’t be helped. As someone within the borders of the state of Nebraska who at least once a week subjects themselves to having writings appear in public, I believe I’m required by state law to discuss, at least in part, the topic of the week. Read More>>>Schleuterville declares bare-bones holiday November 7, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
The holidays are here. Haul out the credit card. Ring in the cheer. Box it. Wrap it. Stuff it ‘neath a tree. It’s part of being a happy family. The older I get, the more I wonder if that can possibly be true. Are the trappings, chaos and expense we endure truly necessary to experience a joyful holiday season? This year I’m going to find out. Read More>>> 'Jasmine' latest example of Allen's genius November 2, 2013 • Patrick White
Woody Allen is easily one of the most subtly versatile directors to have ever lived. While most of his films could be defined as romantic comedy, that is selling the director short. His last critically regarded film “Midnight in Paris” is an entirely different narrative tale compared to his latest, “Blue Jasmine.” While “Midnight in Paris” was an ode to the arts, literature and love, “Blue Jasmine” explores the nature of deception in a relationship and our societal struggle to adapt to a new environment.Read More>>>Start with the basics November 2, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Learning the basics of any craft starts with small steps. For my example I will use the crafts of machine sewing and knitting.
The first thing you most likely will learn is the parts of the sewing machine and how to get the thread from the spool through the thread guides, tension guide and into the eye of the sewing machine needle. The threading will also incorporate the bobbin area of the sewing machine. Read More>>>Local gossip too hard to follow November 2, 2013 • Denise Anderson
As far as farming goes, it was a beautiful morning. The soybeans were in, and it was raining, a nice drenching rain with no wind or hail involved, so the farmers got together for an impromptu gossip session over coffee at the coffee shop. Read More>>>Parents lighten up on children who arrive later November 2, 2013 • Joyce Ore
Any parent who has raised two or more children realizes that the more there are, the easier it is to ignore a situation than to meet the challenge one more time or to say “no” and explain “why not? Read More>>>Bicycling tour reveals more to NAD story November 2, 2013 • Mike Zimmerman
I knew the U.S. Naval Ammunition Depot played a significant part in the history of Hastings, including the explosion of weapons built there and the explosion in population as people came here for jobs. Read More>>>Las Vegas brings back smoky memories November 1, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
I have a fairly good recollection of the first time I heard mention of clean indoor air laws. It would have been in the late 1970s, during my college years, and I had just made a trip to the Minneapolis area. (Fear not, grieving ones, this isn’t a Minnesota football story.)Read More>>>Halloween tale of big hole, magic shoes October 31, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
“What happened?” asked the compassionate policeman. He handed me a cup of coffee that had been on the burner too long, but I was grateful for something to occupy my trembling hands. Read More>>> 'Captain Phillips' incredible movie October 26, 2013 • Patrick White
“Captain Phillips” has all the makings of an Oscar winning film similar to “The Butler,” released earlier this year, but something is rotten in the state of Somalia. “Captain Phillips” explores two livelihoods of vastly different men: one a captain of a cargo ship; the other a Somalian pirate. Director Paul Greengrass and editor Christopher Rouse create powerful parallelism by splicing scenes of Phillips with Muse, the chief Somalian pirate.Read More>>>Crafts take time October 26, 2013 • Robin Stroot
I believe that it’s the idea of perseverance and expectations that makes crafting become a lifelong pursuit instead of a few minutes of frustration interspersed by aggravation. Not that an experienced crafter can’t be frustrated or aggravated at their craft. I’m talking about getting started in any craft.Read More>>>Halloween time for creativity, imagination October 26, 2013 • Joyce Ore
Jack-o’-lanterns with evil grins and wicked glints in their flickering eyes pay tribute to their clever knife-wielding creators. Homeowners turn front yards into creepy cemeteries with ghosts lurking behind headstones and living rooms into places where Dracula would feel comfortable on the web-covered couch. Read More>>>Halloween time for creativity, imagination October 26, 2013 • Laura Beahm
My second Halloween isn’t something I remember, but I do know that it was historic. A home video of the day shows my older brother jumping through the snow as I stand just off our porch, stuck in the snow up to my arm pits. Read More>>>Squeezing in a post-vacation vacation day October 25, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
Famed motivational speaker Zig Ziglar once said that the busiest day a person has at work each year is the day before they go on vacation. You know how it is. Those little tasks you’ve left on a list or cluttered on your desk that need to get done someday, along with those that need to get done right now, all get closer scrutiny the day before you know you’re not going to be there for a while.Read More>>>Exploding air mattresses deflate camp October 24, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
I have taken a recent interest in camping, which sounds a bit goofy with winter lurking just around the corner. Blame it on the exhilarating awareness that our tuition-paying days are finally behind us. Blame it on websites that offer outrageous deals on an enticing array of gear that prompts visions of dominating a woodsy trail or scaling a rocky cliff. Whatever the reason, I have the unbearable itch to sleep unconfined by drywall and brick, under tree boughs and a blanket of stars, with the smoke of a dying campfire dancing on my face. Read More>>> Whedon's take on Shakespeare enchanting October 19, 2013 • Patrick White
Shakespeare fans, this one is for you, and those who are sick of today’s sappy romantic comedies. William Shakespeare understood the complications of romance in 1598 or 1599 and unfortunately directors and writers have veered off track. Rather than focusing in on why we experience love or the complex nature of the emotion, filmmakers go for cheap laughs and shots of abs or breasts to hold an audience. Joss Whedon, director of “The Avengers,” successfully fights for this classic style of romantic comedy in his film adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing.”Read More>>>Simple things get in the way October 19, 2013 • Robin Stroot
It’s the simple things that thwart my crafting. Sometimes it’s a really small thing (like a certain cat I own). Other times, it’s just the three of us: me, myself and I. Read More>>>55 years of for better and for worse October 19, 2013 • Joyce Ore
Fifty-five years ago today, my other half and I were asked if we vowed to stay together for better and for worse. With stars in our eyes, friends and family in church pews and ice cream and cake waiting for us downstairs, little did we know what that simple “yes” really meant. Read More>>>Keep eye out for fancy foliage, darting deer October 18, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
So, as I plop myself down in the chair to begin writing, a realization comes to me. As always, when it’s late at night and I’m home for the duration, I’m making myself comfortable. On this particular evening, that means a pair of wind pants and a slightly heavy, threequarter sleeve T-shirt. That’s when it hits me: “These are my winter lazy-around-the-house clothes!” Wasn’t it just yesterday that I was in shorts and a T-shirt? Read More>>>Schlueterville revisits the tent phase of life October 17, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
I have taken a recent interest in camping, which sounds a bit goofy with winter lurking just around the corner. Blame it on the exhilarating awareness that our tuition-paying days are finally behind us. Blame it on websites that offer outrageous deals on an enticing array of gear that prompts visions of dominating a woodsy trail or scaling a rocky cliff. Whatever the reason, I have the unbearable itch to sleep unconfined by drywall and brick, under tree boughs and a blanket of stars, with the smoke of a dying campfire dancing on my face. Read More>>> Bullock shows acting chops October 12, 2013 • Patrick White
“Gravity” is a refreshing film with a 90- minute runtime and features a total of seven actors, but only one will be remembered years later: Sandra Bullock. Bullock proves herself as a dramatic actress in director Alfonso Cuaron’s seventh film. Read More>>>Tension key to binding off October 12, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Tension is crucial for binding off stitches from your knitting needles. Bind stitches off too tight and the garment will not have any flexibility to give and take with the edges of the garment. Bind off stitches too loose and the edges will flair out. Tension and stitches need to be made just right for a fine edge to your garments and home décor items.Read More>>>Ten tips for safe harvest October 12, 2013 • Denise Anderson
“What are those papers you have laying there?” my neighbor Alvin asked as we sat in the coffee shop on a recent soggy morning. We all appreciated the rain, but it was keeping everyone away from harvesting.
Today’s topic comes to us courtesy of that often-dreaded bastion of the business world — the meeting. From the smallest of mom and pop operations to the large corporate conglomerates, I’m guessing pretty much of all us have gone to meetings.Read More>>>National Park closures leave haunting image October 10, 2013 • Tamera Schlueter
Hunka Burnin’ Hubby and I recently vacationed in the Black Hills, where we drove to Mount Rushmore on the first of October, and found the parking lot barricaded with orange cones, and guarded by sour-faced Park Rangers yelling, “Park’s closed! Keep moving!” Read More>>> ‘237’ explores ‘Shining’ theories October 5, 2013 • Patrick White
Enigmatic director Stanley Kubrick died in 1999, but still film scholars, critics and average viewers discuss the intricacies of Kubrick’s stunning filmography. A career that began with a racetrack robbery, “The Killing,” and later found Kubrick exploring deeper themes in “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “A Clockwork Orange” has fascinated many for years. One film, however — his most conventional, some might say — has the biggest cult following of conspiracy theorists and interpreters.Read More>>>Next week set aside for spinners and weavers to celebrate October 5, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Oct. 7-13 is National Weaving and Spinning Week. Many craft stores and fiber guilds across the country will hold instructional classes and sessions on the art of spinning and weaving fiber into thread/yarn.
I first fell in love with the art of spinning wool into yarn after seeing a public spinning demonstration by the late Lois Young of Minden. Several years later, I would be presented with a hand-crafted Saxon spinning wheel and have my opportunity to turn wool fiber into yarn.Read More>>>Which way will October’s gusts blow? October 5, 2013 • Joyce Ore Children at the school ground across the street are attired in an assortment of spring jackets, winter coats, sweaters of various weights, sweatshirts, T-shirts and shorts. Just like their parents, what they wear in the morning doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be comfortable in the afternoon.Read More>>>Thinking of Clancy on dark, stormy night October 4, 2013 • Russ Batenhorst
So far we’re a few days into it and I don’t think the federal government shutdown has hit me yet (at least I think I’m safe in assuming that in the 36 hours between when I write this and when it’s published, they haven’t compromised yet). Read More>>>In awesome circumstances, words fail October 1, 2013 • Laura Bernero
“I don’t have the words to explain it.” Last Wednesday, as I stood at the bottom of a gargantuan hole west of Hastings that will become the new cell of the Hastings City Landfill in a couple of months, these words crossed my mind. Read More>>>"The World's End' wraps up 'Blood and Ice Cream Trilogy' September 21, 2013 • Patrick White
With an Edgar Wright film you are in for British lunacy with a subplot that usually overpowers the original plot by the end. This is a method of storytelling not often seen in the United States, so consider it a special honor that Wright’s latest film is gracing a Hastings theater with its presence. Read More>>> Mitered corners can be used in quilting, knitting or crochet September 28, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Here is part two of my column on making corners on your craft project.
For a square or rectangular shaped craft project (e.g., a wall hanging) you can use fabric strips that have been cut along the grain of the fabric. These types of strips will give a firm edging for finishing your craft project.
Fall is the name of the season, and along with cooler nights and colorful foliage come potlucks and covered-dish dinners, which as far as I can tell, are no different other the latter sounding a little more sophisticated.
These two social encounters increases as the weather gets colder and leaves dry and blow away. The pace continues until warmer weather when we call this event a “picnic” — the same, as far as I can tell, only slightly different. I have a love/hate relationship with them all.
I don’t really think I should write a column this week. I just don’t think I have to, despite how silly a big white space in the middle of the paper might look. So, much like legitimate column writers have been known to cite inspiration for their writings, I think I have found inspiration in not doing so. I’m following the lead of Sen. Ted Cruz, although I am a little leery of looking for inspiration from a politician. And, as if that isn’t bad enough, he’s from Texas. You’ve no doubt heard or read about Sen. Cruz this week.
Life has been crazy this week, so here’s the column that ran in the Oct. 7, 2010, issue of the Hastings Tribune.
Why don’t people dance anymore? Wedding dances don’t count. After the cake is gone and the guests head home, there’s a good chance the newlyweds won’t step foot on another dance floor until their friends get married. I find that sad. Read More>>> Never too old to learn a few little things September 21, 2013 • Amy Palser Sewing is an exercise in small things.
Fine strands of thread, tiny round bobbins, presser feet like miniature snowshoes and the miniscule needle’s eye. They are itsy-bitsy items that require steady hands and sharp vision (or at least a good pair of bifocals).
And it wasn’t until last week that I had the pleasure of being introduced to this Lilliputian world — which is surprising for someone like myself who’s a bit obsessed with small things. Read More>>> Some foods stir up old memories September 21, 2013 • Joyce Ore
Cold cereal is eaten for breakfast at our house because it is quick and easy to fix. Zip zap and it is on the table ready to go. There is no emotion connected to a bowl of Cheerios or Mini Shredded Wheat other than knowing it is fulfilling a nutritional need, and if I didn’t eat it, I’d be going through the cupboards within the hour searching for a snack.
Most of us have our own special group of emotional foods. These are foods we eat or do not eat, not because of the taste or nutritional value, but because of an experience or a memory.Read More>>>
Action Comics No. 1 premiered 75 years ago and featured a colorfully dressed suave, strong man smashing a 1937 De Soto into a nearby rock. This one image gave birth to a cultural icon that has spawned thousands of comic books, television series, and six major films, including this year’s “Man of Steel.”
When looking back at the first cover with the Last Son of Krypton, people are seen running in fear of this ultimate power. One particular frightened gentleman’s emotions are reminiscent of Edward Munch’s painting “The Scream.” This theme is present throughout “Man of Steel” as humans of Earth do not understand and in many ways fear this outsider. Read More>>> Vehicles become catch-all September 21, 2013 • Denise Anderson
I had to drive my husband’s car to work the other day. Every time I get in it, I’m surprised by what he keeps in there.
Now, I know my Durango isn’t spotless. Empty soda cans and McDonald’s bags litter the floor in the back seat. I have to have a couple of extra jackets in there just in case, and I always have a small pillow and a blanket, again, just in case. My front seat usually has my work bag stuffed full of paper, and Daryl bought me a car organizer that has more papers and my business cards and such in it. The front cubby hole houses my keys, receipts, a couple of magnets and miscellaneous change. Read More>>>Finish with a flourish September 21, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Finishing techniques can make or break the final step of a craft project. Going around a curved edge or making the corner takes a little practice along with a few tips to help you make the turn on your craft project. I will use a baby-sized blanket or afghan for the example below. There are some edgings that are made with extra stitches such as around a crochet doily, to make the last few rows purposely flair in a zig-zag pattern, but let’s focus on just the flat edgings for your project. Read More>>>