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Email and text communication — six basic rules for each

In my most recent column I recapped an online article that highlighted five key points for effective interpersonal conversations.

In the same article I acknowledged that technology, which includes email and now texting, is predominately used for business communications. READ

Eliminate this food to decrease ear infections

Ear infection after ear infection was the main concern of a parent of a young boy that was recently in my clinic. READ

A letter to a daughter on her fourth birthday

Dear Sophie, I write this note to you on your 4th birthday as a letter for the future. I remember the car ride to the hospital as though it was yesterday. I was scared and excited and eager but most of all I was nervous. I was nervous because I didn’t know about girls. I didn’t know how to raise a girl. For weeks prior I had obsessed over the tiny dresses I would put you in. Washing, hand drying and hanging them on the girly pink closet hooks I had bought for that exact purpose. READ

The eulogy exercise: how do you want to be remembered

It was an odd dream. I had arrived at the funeral service late and the pews were filled. I had to sit in one of the chairs hastily lined up for overflow. READ

Attack of mean meter machines

Those dumb parking meters can see me coming a mile (1.6 kilometers) away. And what’s worse is the intrepid meter man (or in a Beatles song “Meter Maid” named “Lovely Rita”) can see me leaving from a kilometre (.6 miles) away. READ

Vinegar a good replacement for toxic cleaning products

We have a new maintenance man in the building where my clinic is located. Our last maintenance man was a great guy. He would do anything for me, change light bulbs, help me move stuff about and was always ready for good a laugh. READ

Reality sets you free from baby fever

There are moments — not often, but sometimes — when nostalgia decides to creep up on me and I get a rare case of baby fever. I will look at my nieces and nephews and think, “Oh golly gosh, [I think in terms of a 1950s housewife] a little teensy tiny baby would be so nice to have to cuddle and hold. I want a baby.” READ

A flash of insight

Have you had an epiphany so shocking you actually said out loud, “Aha!”? Recently, I had an “Aha!” moment about “Aha!” moments. “Aha!” moments are flashes of insight or enlightenment when a deeper understanding or solution to a vexing problem seems to falls into place through sudden insight. READ

Stop fungi, viruses and pests in autumn

In late spring, summer and early fall, deciduous trees and shrubs are covered in leaves. During this time, yellow leaves, dead leaves and dead branches are tell-tale signs that the plant is not healthy. READ

Energy booms often outpace infrastructure

Bakken and Eagle Ford, of course, refer to the huge shale oil fields in North Dakota and Texas, which use fracking technology to get oil and gas out of the ground. The quote is somewhat flippant, but it merely echoes what the U.S. Energy Information Agency is saying. The EIA is the government’s main cheerleader for the shale oil revolution, but even it admits that production will peak in 2021 and then go downhill from there. READ

Probiotics can change your life

It may not be what’s trending on Twitter right now, but it is certainly coming to the forefront of more people’s nutritional conversations, as it should. READ

Planning your yard with the right focal point

How much ornamentation, statues, arches, pergolas, fountains, walls, etc., should be in a yard? It depends on the size of the yard and whether plants or ornaments are the main focus of the garden. READ

How do you bee-have?

In my experience, there are three types of reactions you will find humans having when coming in contact with the ominous bee. READ

Crying babies disrupting Sunday service

Dear Annie: Quite frequently during our Sunday church services, the loud noise of a crying baby or babies makes it difficult to hear the sermon and other portions of the worship service. READ

What will our children become?

There are moments when I look upon my sweet children and am taken away to thoughts of what they will become. I want them to be respectable. I want them to be happy. I want them to be self-sufficient and above all I want them to be moral. READ

A thrilling yarn from Canadian history

The year is 1915, the war that later came to be known as The Great War had begun in the autumn of 1914, and all eyes were on Europe. Young men of Canada were anxious and willing to go overseas and defend the Empire; automobiles were becoming popular for those who could afford the $1,400 price, and the LCW (Local Council of Women) were hard at work lobbying for women’s rights. READ

Grandma should not give in to grandson’s bedtime demands

Dear Annie: I am very close to my 12-year-old grandson. His family life is not good, and since his parents live nearby, the boy is at my house more often than not. READ

Little ones learn an ugly word

We have all heard it, the age old saying, ‘Hate is an ugly word.’ I had never taken much thought to the adage before though, because I too have been guilty of using the word. READ

What’s in that bag? Soil products examined

Any time now, pallets of bagged soil products will be appearing in garden centres. Deciphering the differences and what they are best used for is a challenge. READ

From tears to hugs of love

An inaudible laugh that is small and weak escapes my lips. It is there to remind me that insanity comes in all shapes and sizes. I push it back down to the depths of wherever it came from because for now I have no time for such lunatics. READ

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