Thursday, February 5, 2009

Always Thinking about the Paper

Even though the February issue of the paper just came out this week, I'm already working on the March issue.

I've found that I'm always in "paper" mode--thinking about what to put in the next issue, reading the paper, internet, magazines, etc., with the paper in mind, even listening to the radio and thinking about things that readers would enjoy. Whenever I get an idea or hear something I want to do more research on, I write it down--sometimes on a sticky note, sometimes on the back of a receipt, sometimes on whatever scrap of paper I can find.

I have also gotten into the habit of immediately tearing out articles or blurbs in the paper or magazines; if I wait until "later" it's inevitable that I either won't remember what it is I wanted to tear out, or, will remember what I wanted to tear out but won't be able to find the paper or magazine.

As a result of all of this tearing and jotting down, when I get home from work or doing errands I usually find sticky notes or scraps of paper in my pocket or purse. I often find more when I clean off my desk I find them too. Sometimes I have trouble remembering just why I wrote down a few words or a website, but when I put them in the context of the paper I usually remember.

I really enjoy having a "mission" that I'm always thinking about, even if just subconsciously. I truly feel it's a calling, something that God has led me to do . . . I am blessed to be able to do what I love!

Longer Days!

I noticed several days ago that the days are getting longer. Of course that is a misnomer; the days are always the same length, but the time it's light is getting a little longer every day.

As someone who strongly dislikes the dark days of winter where it seems to start getting dark shortly after lunch, it's like taking a deep, refreshing breath of fresh air to realize it's after 5 PM . . . and the sun is still shining!

We've had some warmer days this week . . . "only" in the 40's and 50's, but still, when I walk outside and take a deep breath . . . I can almost smell spring. :-) !!!

I'm sure we'll have some cold days, and probably a snow storm or two . . . but now that it's February, I know spring isn't too far away.

"New Year's" Resolutions . . . in February

My sister has an interesting--and good--idea for New Year's resolutions; she says that January is a "practice" month, a month to fine-tune resolutions. Then, in February, she pursues her (sometimes revised) resolutions in earnest.

I think it's a great idea! If your resolutions aren't working out the way you wanted them to, re-evaluate them. Were you too ambitious in resolving to exercise an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening, every day? Was resolving to prepare 21 low fat, high fiber, low calorie, delicious meals every week too big of a reach? Have you given up on your resolutions just because you didn't meet your goals for a day or two?

Revise your resolutions, re-commit to meeting your goals, and start your New Year's resolutions . . . on February 6th. Or 15th. Or March 1st. Or any time during the year! Improving yourself can, and should, start any time you want them to.

Reader Help Wanted!

Have you always wanted to see your name in print? Do you dream of becoming a published author someday? Here is your opportunity! I'm looking for reader input in several areas of the paper.

If you like to read and/or listen to music, consider writing a review of your favorite CD or book (Christian book, or a book with positive Christian values, please), fiction or non-fiction. Reviews are a feature of the new "room," The Playroom. Keep your review to about 150 words, and it will be considered for publication. You can mail your review to: Shelly Burke, Nebraska Family Times, 42887 G. G. Road, Genoa, NE, 68640, or e-mail it to me at

Are your children amazing, funny, and/or entertaining? Write their story for the "Your Charming Children" column. See previous issues for examples.

If your review or story appears in the Nebraska Family Times, you will recieve 10 copies of the NFT--with YOUR name in it--to share with friends and family.

Let your inner author . . . out!

February Issue of the Nebraska Family Times

The February issue of the Nebraska Family Times comes out this week!

Lori and I picked it up on Tuesday and made the Norfolk deliveries that day. It was nice to have someone along for deliveries, and not have to park and turn off and lock the vehicle at each location. It was a cold day, too, so we took turns going out into the cold to make the deliveries.

Lori packed and mailed the "big" boxes of papers today, and I mailed the bulk mailings in Norfolk this afternoon. Tomorrow I'll make the Columbus deliveries--it's supposed to be a really nice day so I'll enjoy being out.

I'm very excited about this issue of the paper. I've added a new "room"--The Playroom. These pages were previously filled with a list of sponsors. Instead of just listing sponsors, I'll be spotlighting a sponsor (or several) every month. The Playroom also contains book reviews, recipes, and other fun information and ideas.

This issue of the paper also includes the questionnaire that was in the last issue. I don't always remember to fill out and send things in the first time I see them, so thought wanted to include it again in case anyone else procrastinates like I do. Please fill out and return the questionnaire--the information will help me to fill the paper with news and information that is valuable to you!

Trip to Denver

WOW--it's been a busy few weeks!

The day after my last post we (Cody, Morgan, and I) went to the National Western Stock Show in Denver. Cody drove, and we all had fun on the way there talking and guessing the songs on the radio and the singer. Cody and I had a close battle going for awhile, but he ultimately pulled ahead and won.

We saw a lot of good friends in Denver, friends we don't see often during the year. Our family and several other families stalled together (had our cattle by each other) and everyone helped everyone else get their cattle ready. All the adults made sure the kids got to the ring on time to show, and then back to the stalls.

On Saturday the families who were working together had cattle in classes 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, and 12. There were several calves, and therefore several kids, in each class. It was quite a challenge to get everyone where they needed to be, at the right time, but it got done! We had a successful day with several calves in the champion drive.

We show with one family frequently, and the dad and two sisters came to Denver. The mom had to work and take care of the cattle at home, so was unable to come. As her daughter showed (and Morgan was in the same class) I got the inspiration to take a picture of her daughter with my cell phone and send it to her. She was thrilled to be part of the day even though she couldn't be there. I also sent pictures throughout the day to my mother-in-law. (I would have done the same for my parents, but I don't think they can get pictures on their phone). It was fun to share the day with loved ones who couldn't be there.

The show was very successful for us, and for the families who were there. It was a busy week, but one of the high points of our showing year.