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theBeat – February 2019

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theBeat
Written by Shannon Siebert

Quote of the Day“We’re out of snow shovels and sleds and don’t expect any on the truck.” I overheard this on the Walmart intercom the other day.

SNOW DAYS OF FEBRUARY     

THE STORY:  

SNOW, SNOW, & MORE SNOW….. It’s been a brutal month winter-wise with not only plenty of accumulated snow but cold temps. But let’s grow nostalgic and remember the fun side of all this snow.  Growing up in Montana and the Nebraska panhandle, I’m no stranger to long winters with blizzards and plenty of snow.  Back in Montana, when the roads stayed snow packed for an eternity and before anything like four wheelers existed, my father would attach a rope with the sled to the family Chevy and give us all a spin around the block.  That was fun!  When we lived in Sidney, Nebraska, blizzards were common and for fun we bundled up and stepped out in the backyard to see how quickly we could get lost.  Somehow we all survived.

Photo courtesy of Joni Powers

In Henderson, the traditional sledding spot was on the west end of Lakeview Park where there was the steepest hill in town.  It also helped because the City would dump excess snow there, making for a high liftoff and fast sledding down to the lake.  With the trees taking over that spot, it’s now shifted to west of the pool, right below the high dive.  It’s not as steep, but longer with a thrilling ride down with a drop off onto the frozen lake as well.  Wheeee!!!!!!!!

And then there are those magical words to those in school, “It’s a SNOW DAY!”  Sure, it may come back to haunt the kids later in May when days might have to be added because mother nature overdid it a bit, but oh well—enjoy.  

Other fun things to do with snow—

Making SNOW ice cream of course.  There’s a plethora of recipes out there, but it’s something for young and old to enjoy together without having to go through the mess of the traditional ice cream maker.  Just remember—don’t eat yellow snow!

On the bright side, it’s only with these large snowfalls that snow caves, forts, and tunnels, snowmen, snow sculptures, and snowball fights can happen.  Bring it on!

Feed the birds—This is my first winter to keep a bird feeder loaded with seeds that are attracting a variety of Finches, Chickadees, Juncos, and those flashy Red Cardinals and Blue Jays that make such a splash against the white snow.  What makes it more enjoyable is the “Birds of Nebraska Field Guide”.  This kid-friendly, easy-to-use guide is organized by colors so you can quickly identify birds you see. I suggest investing in a squirrel-proof feeder.  Those industrious squirrels still try to make an illegal entry but mostly they end up bottom feeding with the other birds that don’t fit on the feeder. Even on these cold gray days, my heart lifts a bit when I see the bird activity around my feeder.  Give it a try.

theBeat—Yeah, I’ll admit it does get a bit weary near about March when the snow just seems to keep piling up.  And for those who have livestock or who have jobs that are mucho difficult with snow accumulation, I’m sorry. But….there are only two more months with an “R” in them, and according to my mother, that means I can go barefoot!  It is staying lighter longer and good ole’ daylight savings time will kick in March 10th.  Hopefully the temps will rise and we will get a reprieve, but in the meantime, go out there and make a snow angel just for fun.

What’s everyone talking about? 

Band German Smorgasbord that never fails to disappoint!  This annual fundraiser will be held Saturday, March 16, from 5-7:30 PM.  It will be followed by a band concert at 7:45 PM.  Tickets are on sale as we speak and can be purchased through any band member or at the Heartland school office. 

If you prefer to buy online—here’s the link for brownpapertickets to buy your tickets online!  Just remember that there will be a small fee for an online purchase. 

This event has a long history (we’re talking 1955), so check out this link on the City of Henderson webpage.  It’s also a huge undertaking for a relatively small group of band parents.  Check out their need for volunteers to help with the Verenike making on Friday, March 1, 3:30 PM at the school cafeteria.  

What everyone is STILL talking about? 

It’s official!  The Henderson Home Show is rescheduled for Saturday, March 9, at the Heartland Community School.  It was a SNOW DAY back on February 23 when the HHS was originally scheduled and had to be postponed.  It’s not easy to find a suitable date, but thanks to all involved, they tried to find a date with the least amount of conflicts. Check out the link for all the details about the happenings for this great event. 

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What to Read—

Being Mortal by Atul Gawande

It’s not a fun or popular subject—how to approach one’s end of life, but Atul Gawande a practicing surgeon and writer tackles it head-on in this must read book. He shows how scientific advances have profoundly altered our human existence for which we are mighty happy about because we live longer and healthier lives than ever before.  

But he turns the table on these same scientific advances that “have turned the processes of dying and aging into medical experiences, matters to be managed by health care professionals.  And we in the medical world have proved alarmingly unprepared for it,” he writes.  His book has added meaning as he weaves the story of his own father, a successful urologist, and his difficult journey dealing with a dangerous spinal cord tumor.  

He has some tough questions to answer when facing the last phases of life:  What is most important to you right now?  How do you want to live when you need assistance?  How can we make lives meaningful even when we may be weak and frail? When is doing everything medically possible doing more harm than good? 

He explores the history of nursing homes, assisted living, geriatrics, hospice and palliative care.  He offers new ways of thinking about how we might solve the problem of how to provide safety while helping one maintain some measure of autonomy.  He emphasizes that any patient with a serious illness has “priorities (avoiding suffering, strengthening relationships, being mentally aware, not being a burden on others, achieving a sense that life is complete) besides simply prolonging their lives.” Modern medicine has failed to meet these needs he says. Life is not curable and when time is short, answering the question of what is most important should be paramount.  In the book, he argues that more time and effort should be spent on the end of life phase in order to make life more meaningful.     

Word for the day: Palliative 

pal·li·a·tive
[ˈpalēˌādiv, ˈpalēədiv]
ADJECTIVE

  1. (of a medicine or medical care) relieving pain without dealing with the cause of the condition. synonyms:  soothing, alleviating, sedative, calmative  

“She opted for palliative care when her brain tumor was inoperable.”  

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