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Picasso in my attic
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Monday, January 14, 2013 10:07 AM | Updated ( Wednesday, February 27, 2013 3:20 PM )


I spend some time watching the pawn shows, pickers and Antiques Roadshow. I’m amazed at what people find in their attics, basements and forgotten corners of their homes.

I don’t think my home has any such corners and I pretty much know what we have and it isn’t making the cut on Antiques Roadshow any time soon.

I can’t help but make the list while I watch. Aunt Gertie’s antique broach she hasn’t worn since she played dress up? It’s now worth a cool $12,000. So sold.


How I got my first deer
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Saturday, January 05, 2013 3:06 AM

So here is the story of how I got my first deer.

They say when you see a deer wait because there’s always at least one more. How true this proved to be for me the Saturday before Christmas.

I and my little family were on the way to Van Wert on Lincoln Highway just after dusk. We had Ringo in the car because we figured he could use an outing. He’s a very good traveler, often falling asleep halfway through the ride. He seems to enjoy coming with us so we take him whenever we can.

We were approaching the river bridge just east of Converse-Roselm Road and I saw it. A deer! Wait. There were more of them! Holy Cats! What am I supposed to do? They were all the way across the road. If I went left, I was hitting a deer. If I went right, I was hitting a deer. If I stayed the course forward, yup, you guessed it, I was hitting a deer.

Happy New Year and good luck
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Saturday, December 29, 2012 2:05 AM

Well, here it is that time again. The pressure’s on. Time to make a New Year’s resolution.
The top 10 most common New Year’s resolutions are:
1. Lose weight
2. Stop smoking
3. Stick to a budget
4. Save or earn more money
5. Find a better job
6. Become more organized
7. Exercise more
8. Be more patient at work/with others
9. Eat better
10. Become a better person
This sounds like what we try to do just about every day in our normal lives. So, why is it so hard to keep them?
Getting fit and healthy is the most common resolution. Every January, people resolve that this will be the year they get back into shape and sign up at a gym. But a month or two later, that resolve slips away.
Statistics indicate that two-thirds of Americans will break their New Year resolutions by Valentine’s Day. The main reason is that many people set goals that don’t work with their lifestyles, are too challenging or not based on something they really enjoy.
Who comes home from a hard day’s work and thinks, “Boy, a nice salad would be great!?”
I personally am thinking about drowning my troubles in ice cream or munching through the blues on cookies. Comfort foods — the downfall of every one of my diets. Broccoli just doesn’t have the same effect as a nice chewy brownie. I don’t get that “aaahhh” feeling from crunching my way through celery, either.
I am attempting to cross No. 2 off my list permanently. So far, so good. I’m not putting much out there on that because it is sooooo hard and many don’t make the first, second or even third time.
Sticking to a budget and making and/or saving more money seem to go hand-in-hand. The budget looks a lot better when there is more to work with. Who doesn’t want more money?
Organization is in the eye of the beholder. My mother used to have a sign on her desk at Marathon that read “Don’t touch my desk, I know where everything is!” Same seems to apply here. Every time I clean off my desk, I can’t find what I want.
So, what is my New Year’s resolution? Not to make one. That way, I can’t fail. If I work on a few things on the top 10 list throughout the year, I’ll be much better off than making a single decree and failing, like two-thirds of the rest of America.
Happy New Year!

A blessed time of year
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Saturday, December 22, 2012 2:04 AM

So here it is, the weekend before Christmas. The shopping is done; well, for gifts anyway. I wrapped the last presents on Sunday. It felt good to put all the paper and accessories away and free up that corner of the living room. Whew.

We had our gift exchange at work on Friday. Everyone seemed pleased with what they got. We may shake it up next year and play some games with the bounty.

I’m hoping we get to do a little light-gazing tonight. I want to show my hubby the house in Ottoville for sure. It’s pretty neat. If you haven’t seen it, it’s worth the drive.

We love Christmas lights and enjoy seeing how creative people are and what’s new. In our estimation, the house on the corner of Franklin and Sixth streets is the best-decorated house. It’s a personal favorite. You don’t have to agree - just drive by and give it a chance.

A few years ago, we actually stopped and knocked on the door and asked if we could look at some of their lights so we could buy them the next year. As luck would have it, we still haven’t found them. I think they have a double-secret store they shop at and they’re not giving it up.

They’ve added a star this year - very cool. Yes, that’s us sitting at the stop sign watching it to see what all it does.

The Deitering home off 309 is amazing - again. I can’t even imagine the time it takes to do all that. He must start before Halloween.

Thanks to everyone who submitted their Top 10 Christmas Songs lists. I’ll have those put together and the results will be in Monday’s paper. We may have to make that a tradition or do something similar each year. You’ll also see the coloring contest winners. Cute, very cute.

As I looked through the lists, I had to rearrange my own a little. There are just so many you forget one or two you really like and have to move things around.

So here is a little something I want everyone to do on Tuesday. First, as your feet hit the floor say a little “thank you” that your feet hit the floor. As you spend time with your families, say another “thank you” for them and the fact you can be together. Many will spend Christmas alone because they have lost loved ones or they can’t be together.

It’s a joyous time of year full of wonder and delight and a time to gather with those we love and let them know how special we think they are.

Merry Christmas! May you all feel as blessed as I know I am.

Letters to the Editor ~Jettinghoff and Ryba
Written by Staff Reports   
Wednesday, December 19, 2012 1:53 PM

Dear area residents,
We want to thank everyone who helped make the first annual “Betty Honigford” Christmas Decorating Contest a success. Thanks to all the enthusiastic and hard-working participants. We were so happy for your involvement and we admired your willingness to enter the contest in its first year. You’ve spread so much cheer in our community and we’ve heard so many positive comments about all the houses. The decorations were wonderful! Each decorated house had special elements and they were all so beautiful in their own way.
Thanks to all of our judges, for doing such a difficult job in such a thoughtful manner. We were grateful we did not have the unenviable task of selecting the winners. Thanks to Nancy Spencer for her help, encouragement and willingness to provide coverage of the event. Nancy, you went out of your way to generate interest in this event and support for us. Thanks for running all over town with us to take pictures and present prizes. Your pictures absolutely captured the artistry of the houses.
Thanks to Jennifer Moenter for inviting us to participate in the Hometown Christmas Celebration.
Thanks to Annette Brown for helping to design and make the People’s Choice banner.
Thanks to the employees of the banks and the city building for spreading the word about the contest, helping with the registration forms, and providing such a cute space for people to vote for their favorite.
Christmas isn’t always a happy time. We know we are not alone in missing someone at this time who was so central to every holiday and all the happiness associated with it. The life of one person does affect  the lives of so many others. Mom would have loved the lights! Thanks for your help in keeping her bountiful kindness and irrepressible spirit alive. We can all make a difference in the life of someone else.
Glad tidings and good cheer,
We hope to see you again next year!
Bev Jettinghoff and Meghan Ryba