A few more tips for creating a self-ruffling scarf March 8, 2014 • Robin Stroot
Here are a few more tips while creating your self-ruffling scarf.
First, I found it easier in my experience to use larger sized needles to knit the rows. Because there is no gauge, you are free to use whatever sized knitting needles you choose that will still fit through the openings of the self-ruffling yarn edge. I found it easier to hold on to a set of Size 8 (USA) knitting needles as opposed to a Size 5 or 4 (USA size) to make the scarf because the yarn is very slick and needles tend to slide out from your hand. Read More>>>‘American Hustle’ cinematic piece of art March 8, 2014 • Patrick White
David O. Russell has quickly become one of my favorite American directors in this modern age of cinema. His star continues to rise with each picture he makes. Russell’s original motion pictures carried a dark sense of humor and taboo subjects, but he’s refocused his sights on a near critique and exploration of American living and corruption in the form of drugs, mental illness, and swindling.
There’s a question that is asked quite a bit this time of year. For Christians worldwide the season of Lent began this week with the observation of Ash Wednesday. Read More>>>Banana Man verses Derelict the Despicable March 6, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
Writer’s note: I ran past three broken bottles on my writing-night run. It reminded me of a ridiculous column I wrote a few years back about the subject of derelicts and their love of flinging glass. So here’s the column that ran in the March 10, 2011, issue of the Hastings Tribune. It still applies.Read More>>>Ruffled scarves good for beginners March 1, 2014 • Robin Stroot
Ruffled scarves are a popular fashion accessory that I’ve seen lots of women wearing. I decided it was time to venture into making my own ruffled scarf.
First thing to do is select the proper yarn; well, not really a yarn but a skein of continuous fiber that is made to look like a net or piece of filmstrip. For the sake of this column, I’m going to refer to it as yarn although the self-ruffling yarn is not really yarn as we think of it in the conventional sense. It is a skein that looks like a net (with a thicker woven section along one of the long edges) or a wide piece of material that has open sections along one entire long edge of the yarn.Read More>>>Fashion vanilla my flavor March 1, 2014 • Joyce Ore
Spring is in the air and I’m inclined to browse, but the things I like or understand no longer are available. The world has moved ahead and left me feeling like the little kid holding a plain vanilla cone while his friends are at the yogurt bars choosing from a variety of creamy confections and topping them with dozens of toppings, many unfamiliar.Read More>>>There is no movie like ‘Nebraska’ February 28, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
One last day of February is upon us. March is tomorrow and none too soon. It seems every year I’m more weary of winter and ready for spring. Even though it is supposed to be lousy this weekend, it will warm me up to flip the calendar.Read More>>>Return to running is ugly, awful sight February 27, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
Be careful what you wish for. I was thinking of that shortly before sitting down to write this column. I’d just finished running three pathetic miles in 16-degree temps. My eyelids were frozen open and my nostrils sealed shut. Being a bad arse is not always pretty.Read More>>>Winning baseball but a fantasy for some February 22, 2014 • John Huthmacher
As spring approaches, this young man’s thoughts turn to fantasy baseball. For those unfamiliar with the game, it basically involves attempting to select a roster of players whose statistics turn out to be better than every other team’s statistics over the course of the season. Points are awarded in each category, such as innings pitched, strikeouts, earned run average, home runs, RBI, and so on.
Linings are pieces of smooth fabric that are attached to the inside of a garment or home décor item. Some of the purposes of lining fabric are to hide the raw edges of the outer fabric, provide warmth, ease in putting the garment on or taking the garment off and/or a comfortable finish to the garment.Read More>>>Mysteries of memory February 22, 2014 • Joyce Ore
Sandra White’s birthday is in a few weeks. That I remember the day is interesting because I haven’t seen or heard from Sandra since we graduated in the middle part of the last century.Read More>>>Changing write night would just be wrong February 21, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
I almost wrote this a day early this week. I wonder if you would have been able to tell. Wednesday is my normal day for writing this little entry each week and getting it sent off to the Tribune office. It probably is better that way. If they had it for more than one day before it had to be set up on the Friday editorial page, that would give them more time to realize maybe they should find something else to take up the space.Read More>>>Moviegoers wring fun out of rare matinee February 20, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
It was the first time we’d been to a movie since we watched Sandra Bullock defy gravity last October. I won’t tell you where we went, or what we saw, but it was in another community during a Saturday matinee. The movie was a big-deal new release billed as “the best of the year.” Aren’t they all?Read More>>>Space for reflection February 15, 2014 • Denise Andersen
Up the road from me is a barn I want. It’s one of those big, red barns with a gambrel roof and a hay mow and all the barn things that one thinks of when thinking about a barn.
After a few weeks of reviewing movies, I read one chapter from “On Writing Well” by William Zinsser about his approach to artistic criticism and column writing. In Zinsser’s book, he explains that critics should “like — or, better still, love — the medium they are reviewing.” I love film and I love writing reviews of the latest cinematic adventure, but I was starting to worry that my writing was growing stale over the years. I decided in order to reinvigorate my writing style I would see a movie along with the intended audience.Read More>>>3 crafts start small, end big February 15, 2014 • Robin Stroot
One thing in common with knit, crochet and quilt crafters is the ability to take small pieces of fiber and/or cloth and make something such as a garment or home décor item. No fiber or fabric is wasted. I would get flour in cloth sacks and after the flour was gone, I used the fabric bags as kitchen towels. I know many people whose mothers or grandmothers used the flour sacks as fabric for clothing and quilts.Read More>>>Eggs, liver, baby powder and doubt February 15, 2014 • Joyce Ore
OK, daughters. If you have lung problems, go ahead, blame me, your mother. I was just trying to keep the diaper rash at bay and be sure you smelled wonderful when family, friends, acquaintances and strangers on the street stopped to tell me what cute babies you were. Read More>>>If you can’t say anything nice, chill out February 14, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
I’ve been trying to think of what’s the worst thing I’ve ever called another person to their face. Or even from a few rows up in a crowded place. You’ve more than likely read about the Oklahoma State basketball player that shoved a Texas Tech fan near the end of a game between the two schools last Saturday. The player had dived off the court and into the seats attempting to get to a loose ball. The fan, known it seems for being a bit of a loud mouth, said something that the player didn’t take kindly to, and the quick shove ensued. Amid early speculation that it could have been racial in nature, the common consensus now is that the fan called the player “a piece of crap.”Read More>>>Love and marriage take time and humor February 13, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
Column-writing night found me in the Valentine card aisle, sifting through sad puppy/fuzzy kitten options until I found one featuring a polar bear splayed out on a glacier with his tongue hanging out. Who knew it could be so hard to find just the right card? So here’s the column that ran in the Feb. 14, 2013, issue of the Hastings Tribune. Behave yourselves and have a great week. Read More>>>‘Dallas Buyers Club’ deftly shows nature of humanity February 8, 2014 • Patrick White
“Dallas Buyers Club” had a 25-day shoot with a minimal lighting setup and managed to prove that minimalistic filmmaking, technically speaking, could be just as gorgeous and engaging as a technically complicated piece.
In “Dallas Buyers Club,” Matthew McConaughey portrays real-life Ron Woodroof, a chain-smoking, racist, homophobic electrician who gets cheap thrills riding bulls. After having unprotected sex, Woodroof discovers that he is HIV positive. Woodroof eventually reveals his disease to friends; they respond with hateful homophobic slurs and disown him. Woodroof is no pushover and refuses to go down without a fight; he embraces drugs that are not approved by the FDA. This leads to a profitable business model in which Woodroof smuggles in the unapproved drugs and sells them to HIVpositive individuals.Read More>>>Crafting terms differ around world February 8, 2014 • Robin Stroot
Patterns for knit and crochet items are easily accessible on the Internet. However, if you live in the North American part of the world, some international terms may have you confused about what technique to do on your knit or crochet craft project. There are some terms that we use in American crafting that may be totally different in other parts of the world.
Let’s start with crochet: A yarn over is taking the yarn and wrapping once around the hook. This is the basis for all stitches. In European circles, the term is listed as YRH — meaning yarn round hook. To “skip” a stitch in North America means you need to “miss” the stitch.Read More>>>My heaven has room for dogs February 8, 2014 • Joyce Ore
Every once in a while when life seems a little off kilter, I think about what I want my heaven to be like. I’m not talking about THE HEAVEN, for I have no control over that, but my own individually designed heaven. What’s in that heaven depends greatly on what mood I’m in.
Today my heaven would be filled with friendly dogs who like to be scratched behind their ears, patted on their heads and let it be known in a hundred different ways that they like me.Read More>>>Home found seven years later worth wait February 8, 2014 • Will Vraspir
It may have taken us seven years, but our family has finally moved into our home. Better late than never, I always say. For some people, it may seem odd to wait so long after looking at a house to make a bid. That’s just the way it turned out for us.
Just more than seven years ago, my wife and I started to look for a house to buy. The already kids shared a room in our apartment and our youngest was about to be born. We needed someplace to put him. I offered to move my socks out of the dresser drawer, but my wife insisted we needed more bedrooms.Read More>>>Saying goodbye to Jay and hello to games February 7, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
It has been a while since I used random, quick hitting thoughts to fill a column. At least I was thinking that in the morning hours, knowing I’d likely be up late night to finish this task. So, here are a few random, quick-hitting thoughts that I jotted down on a sticky note through the course of one day:Read More>>>Queen Dufus’ Guide to Love Letters 101 February 6, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
I frequently write about my husband. The poor guy fields a lot of Hunka Burnin’ Hubby jokes, along with the occasional “you’re not what I expected” proclamation. He gets a big charge out of those, especially the woman who stared at him squinty-eyed and deadpanned, “I thought you’d be taller.”
I often think of switching to topics that have nothing to do with my family, like politics, food, running, cats, or fungus. I’m kidding of course. I could never write a weekly column about cats. But then I remember the guy who said, “I wish my wife would say nice things about me once in a while.”Read More>>>‘Abolitionists’ fascinating look at civil rights battle February 1, 2014 • Patrick White
I had the pleasure of seeing “The Abolitionists Part III,” a 60-minute documentary screened by the Hastings Public Library. This documentary feature is part of the Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle film program beginning this week and continuing into the spring.
“The Abolitionists Part III” first screened on Monday and will screen again today in the Hasting Public Library auditorium at 2 p.m. On Sunday, Bob Amyot, Hastings College associate professor of political science and chair of the department, will lead a film discussion at 2 p.m. in the library auditorium.Read More>>>Bracelets a snap to make February 1, 2014 • Robin Stroot
Over the past few months, I’ve seen kids and adults wearing colorful key chains, necklaces, lanyards and bracelets made from small rubber bands. If you know how to fold, you can make a simple version of a bracelet or wristband with the colorful rubber bands.
The rubber bands are about the size of a nickel and come in several different colors. Included in the rubber band packages are several small S-shaped plastic pieces and a small, crochet-hook style tool called a pick tool.Read More>>>Newfangled stuff has lost its appeal February 1, 2014 • Joyce Ore
There was a time when I was ready for anything new. I looked forward to the latest in spring fashion, home appliances, decorating ideas, television shows, lipstick and mascara that promised fuller lashes.
If you doubt the existence of werewolves, wave a warm chocolate chip cookie under the nose of a woman who recently started a diet, specifically the one writing this column. Go ahead. I dare you.
If you’re feeling especially brave, wave that cookie on zero-based budget writing night. That’s worth a double-dog dare. Be prepared to pull back a bloody stub.Read More>>>Chores in PJs a first for Alvin January 25, 2014 • Denise Andersen
“Alvin, are you getting up today?” Mabel asked her husband for the third time.
January is a notoriously bad month for movies. This is the month that studios will often throw their garbage in and hope that a hit like “Paul Blart” comes out on the other end. The holiday movie season is over, Disney has released its 53rd animated motion picture and studios have presented their big Oscar contenders. In January I usually do my best to watch all the Academy Award nominees rather than going to see the “mainstream” movies available locally and this year is not an exception. I’m not all that interested in “Jack Ryan” or “Ride Along” and “The Nut Job” looks like a piece of wannabe Disney/Pixar nonsense that shouldn’t have been released.Read More>>>Different needs for each crafts January 25, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Embroidery needles come in several different sizes. Tapestry needles are used for most needlepoint and counted cross stitch projects. The needle’s eye is large enough to accommodate yarn and/or several strands of embroidery floss. The needle also has a dull point to allow the needle to go through embroidery fabric smoothly without splitting the threads of the embroidery fabric. They range in sizes from 13 to 26. The higher the number, the smaller the needle.Read More>>>Buyer's remorse – upside down January 25, 2014 • Joyce Ore
If it isn’t used for two years, get rid of it. Good advice for those who want to keep their homes uncluttered? Eons ago, when I was young, spry, full of energy and full of glorious expectations, my mother gave me a small roasting pan made of black enamel and sprinkled with white dots.Read More>>>Annual family photos an exercise in folly January 25, 2014 • Laura Beahm
The month of December is one full of generally happy mail. Between Christmas gifts arriving on a daily basis and cards and photos from friends near and far, it’s almost possible to forget about the bills buried at the bottom of the pile. Thankfully this happiness extends into January with “Happy New Year” cards sent by those who got caught up in the holiday hustle and bustle or were waiting for the whole family to pose for a photo at Christmas. Read More>>>Reset button for workplace a novel idea January 17, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
This week welcomes the first full moon of 2014. Native Americans call it a “Wolf Moon,” so named from hungry wolves howling in the biting cold by Indian villages. It’s a fitting name, as there is indeed something carnal about a cold, dark January, when spring is but a faraway dream. Read More>>> What’s different about Germany? Everything January 14, 2014 • Megan Hultquist
BANN, Germany — If you look up “different” in the dictionary, you will find the definition to be something along the lines of “not the same as.” Different is hardly adequate to describe the comparison between Germany and the United States. Everything is “different.” The food. The language. The towns and roads. Everything. Different is not always better or worse; it is just not the same.
The Golden Globes will be broadcast this Sunday, which means it’s time to take a look back at 2013 and all of the excellent films released. This was undoubtedly one of the best years in filmmaking so creating this list was nearly impossible. I give you the best films of 2013:Read More>>>Sorting through old files January 11, 2014 • Robin Stroot
It’s great to be sewing and knitting in my new craft room. More than anything, it’s great to be able to move about the room and find things.
It was cold outside and I mean, really cold. It was the result of a Polar vortex, something I had never heard of in my life. It apparently existed but I never knew what it was, except that it meant bone-snapping cold. Read More>>>Lift from getting organized may be short-lived January 11, 2014 • Joyce Ore
Now that we have gotten somewhat used to this new year, it is time to reorganize. The magazines and airwaves are full of tips of ways to make life easier, to ease stress, to look into a cupboard and immediately find the toothpicks; to check under the bed and find nothing, not even tiny fluffs of dog hair; to hear the doorbell and not hide behind the door because the house still resembles Christmas morning; to look into a child’s bedroom and actually see the floor because everything has its place. Read More>>>For Red Cloud, saying bye to ‘Mom’ tough January 11, 2014 • Tony Herrman
Like just about everyone in Red Cloud, I was blown away when I heard the news Barb Sprague died Thursday. Anytime I was in Red Cloud to cover something, Barb was there. Read More>>>It’s a long, long way to Memorial Day January 10, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
Whew, is it really Friday? I think I’ve said this before, but I think we’re at the end of the longest workweek of the year. And I don’t mean “so far.” I know we’re only 10 days into the New Year, so of course this would be the longest. I’m thinking long term.Read More>>>New Year already seems oddly familiar January 9, 2014 • Tamera Schlueter
The Schlueterville New Year began with a case of déjà vu, that crazy feeling of having experienced something before. Great things happened in 2013 — monumental, messy stuff that makes you land on your butt and ask, “Did that really happen?” Hunka Burnin’ Hubby and I were a little sad to see it end. Read More>>> ‘Secret Life of Walter Mitty’ approachable for all audiences January 4, 2014 • Patrick White
Ben Stiller brings to the screen his fifth directorial feature “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” an adaptation that explores the awkwardness of life, how a person’s individuality can change with one simple leap, and the nature of our own human imagination. Stiller’s film is not a comedy, but rather a story told within our own reality. If humor accompanies this reality then so be it.Read More>>>Stretch your stitch repertoire January 4, 2013 • Robin Stroot
Abasic sewing machine offers many different stitching techniques to suit most any general sewing project. I can remember when sewing machines first came onto the market that had pre-set stitch patterns, including an option called the stretch stitch.Read More>>>Farming resolution nebulous January 4, 2014 • Denise Andersen
Occasionally, I do the resolution thing for the New Year. I used to resolve to lose weight, eat healthier and exercise more. One year I resolved not to deal with people who were not nice. Read More>>>Resolutions short-lived since age 12 January 4, 2014 • Joyce Ore
At the risk of sounding behind the season, I’ve submitted this column to coincide with “Little Christmas,” or Epiphany, which celebrates the arrival of the three wise men bearing gifts for the Baby Jesus. Read More>>>A self-review to knock the boss' socks off January 3, 2014 • Russ Batenhorst
You might have to keep a watchful eye on me this week. It can be a problem at times when different writing assignments converge at one point in time. And, while it might not always be obvious, when it is this column, I’ll try to be creative at times — and maybe even factual. Read More>>>