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April 2020

Features

Crisis Prep, School, and Kids

I have to admit, I’m one of those parents who hugs her child a little tighter before school every morning. My daughter is in second grade and the thought of the Newtown and Parkland shootings, among others, is always somewhere in my busy mom mind. Usually, it’s tucked way back…

More Than a Media Company

VPM – the largest media organization in Central Virginia – is a lot like other media outlets. Its content is found on television, radio, and digital platforms. It has a trained news team that reports on state and local government, education, and people and events in the community. It looks…

Columns

Playdough Parenting

“There’s a sign-up sheet on the table!” is the last thing any working parent wants to hear during back-to-school night at a preschool. If I’m completely honest, I remember being skeptical of it being called back-to-school night in the first place. Yet, here I was, surrounded by parents – most…

Just Say No to Plastic!

My aha moment for reducing plastic came at my kids’ elementary school playground when I noticed all the juice box straw wrappers. I picked up fistfuls of wrappers and threw them away and realized that when we give kids juice boxes – while they are convenient and cheap and kids…

You Are Supreme

And so, it’s time to pull away from the curb. Again. You and I drove all these hours back to campus, and then I tried to fill an hour by asking if there was anything else you needed, or if I could get you some extra snacks from the store…

An April Like No Other

This is the eleventh time I’ve written an April publisher’s note, and if I were to look back (which I never do; reading my own writing makes me cringe), I’m sure they have all started with talk of the joys of springtime and summer camp planning and the many events…

Departments

Roots of Environmental Protection

One day in early 1975, an employee at the Life Sciences Products Company in Hopewell began trembling uncontrollably. The shaking didn’t stop.  Other workers at the same chemical company previously had suffered bouts of blindness, joint pain, slurred speech, tremors, labored breathing, and chest pains. But this particular employee went…

Kindergarten Countdown Camp

When Bonnie Soto was told she was having twins in 2014, she suddenly found herself confronting a revised family budget that didn’t fit with her original plans. She had figured that after her baby was born, she would find childcare and return to her job. But when she multiplied childcare costs by…

Tax Strategies to Consider

Nothing says, “Welcome spring!” like daffodils, pollen, baby bunnies, and (perhaps) cutting a big check to the IRS. Conversely, many people purposefully overpay their taxes, so they receive a refund after filing. This is problematic as well. Even if you save (or invest) your refund, you may be inadvertently costing…

Amicable Divorce is a Thing

Television and movies often show the flashy sides of divorce by portraying heated courtroom showdowns, spouses hiding money in Swiss bank accounts, and confrontations about steamy extramarital affairs. While some of these scenes can be derived from real life, most real people going through divorce are stressed out and focused…

Kindergarten Readiness and Career Choices

My son will turn five in September, and I can’t decide if he’s ready for kindergarten. Are there any solid indicators in your opinion? The most important skill for your child is not a skill, but a healthy state of mind. Does he have the social and emotional maturity to…

GoochlandCares

Visit GoochlandCares.org for guidance on conducting a safe food drive in your neighborhood. _________________________________________________________________________________ As a single mom, Sheila Jamerson doesn’t worry about herself. She worries about taking care of her two children. That anxiety recently turned to fear when Sheila lost her job. She was able to find part-time…

Understanding Climate Change

This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of Earth Day. For five decades, engaged neighbors have come together to show their support for protecting our planet for future generations. Earth Day themes have focused on such wide-ranging topics as inefficient cars, oil spills, polluting factories, toxic dumps, pesticides, loss of wilderness,…

Low Testosterone and Men’s Health

If you spend any time with media, you know about advertising overload. And for men, a particular type of ad often piques interest. There are products and services that promise to make men more virile and improve one’s sex life. In some instances, a product may be legitimate, but often…

Your Kitchen Starter Guide

Between traditional media and digital resources – think Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook – we are inundated with beautiful photos of food, along with videos of people cooking wonderful dishes and complete meals. If you’re just starting out, it can be a little overwhelming, especially if you didn’t grow up in a…

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