Henrico County Opinions
By Patty Kruszewski, Citizen Managing Editor 11/24/2016 Family Forum
As Thanksgiving approached four years ago, I wrote in this space about how thankful I was.
At the time, only three months had passed since the death of my youngest daughter.
I was inspired to write the column, however, because another bereaved parent had said that Thanksgiving is a joke when you are grieving for a child.
After initially agreeing with him, I had to admit that I did have much to be thankful for. And now that several years have passed, I have much more. > Read more.
By Patty Kruszewski, Citizen Managing Editor 08/11/2016 Family Forum
On June 16, Richmond experienced extensive power outages after a summer storm with high winds.
Falling trees demolished cars and homes, blocked roads, and can-openered roofs -- adding water damage to structural collapse. Hospitals scrambled for extra generators. Businesses lost thousands of dollars in refrigerated and frozen goods. Insurance adjusters flocked to town from all corners of the state to handle claims. Worst of all, a Richmond resident suffered serious injuries after being hit by a falling tree -- and a beloved Godwin teacher lost his life at an intersection with non-functioning traffic signals.
As the power outage dragged on for days, the hardship stories multiplied. It seemed half the town was futilely search for ice, sweltering without air conditioning, or busting the budget eating all their meals in restaurants. > Read more.
By Patty Kruszewski, Citizen Managing Editor 05/12/2016 Family Forum
My brother Paul and I recently were discussing the “good old days,” and his belief that the Fifties was the best decade ever.
While Paul cited the era’s prosperous economy at the top of his list, he also alluded to another favorite theme of Fifties fans: the social and cultural climate. The decade was a happier time, fans say, because life was simpler, families were closer and marriages stronger. Many of my 50’s-born peers speak nostalgically of the way we romped in the great outdoors by day and shared meals with our families by night, then bonded in our ritual gathering around the TV set. > Read more.
My three girls had it so much better than I did in so many ways.
They enjoyed academic opportunities, enrichment programs, and even a choice of schools to attend that I could not have imagined in the regimented, one-size-fits-all schools of my own era. They had the chance to participate in recreational sports and school athletics that didn't exist for girls in my pre-Title-IX school years. And they had a mother who was involved in their lives and passionate about raising them to grow up to be confident, capable, compassionate young women.
There's only one way that I can say I was one-up on my daughters. > Read more.
I once thought that raising my children was the hardest work I had ever done or would ever do.
Raising my three daughters was so physically, mentally and emotionally taxing that I often fell asleep at 9 p.m. when they were young – the instant I had them tucked in bed.
By midmorning, I was always drained of mental and physical energy (quite literally "drained" in the days of nursing infants on demand), and almost crazed with exhaustion by nighttime. There was never enough sleep, and there were never enough breaks. > Read more.
The wintry weather we’ve been having lately brings to mind a popular discussion topic at playgroups and mom forums back when I had young children: cabin fever – and how to cope with it.
In Pennsylvania, where we lived when my kids were small, there was no such thing as having too many ideas on how to liven up those long dreary days of indoor confinement. Not only were winters considerably longer and snowier than Richmond’s, but it was the 1980s, and there were fewer entertainment options around.
> Read more.
'Tebow Bill' is a mistake
Just when you thought Tim Tebow was finally out of the public spotlight, his name is back in it.
The Virginia Senate this week passed the "Tebow Bill," which would allow homeschooled students the opportunity to participate in public school extracurricular activities such as sports and band, among others. The House had previously endorsed the bill as well.
But the bill, much like the short NFL career of the former quarterback whose name it bears, is a disappointment.
> Read more.
The fuss about Adrian Peterson has died down in the last month, but the case continues to bother me – and will for some time.
Like a lot of people, I was appalled to hear that Peterson, a Minnesota Vikings football player, whipped his four-year-old with a wooden switch to the point of injuring him.
But that is not what left the lingering bad taste in my mouth, and what discouraged me so much about the whole affair.
What really took me aback was how many people defended him, and how many advocate physical punishment of children. > Read more.
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Citizen Staff Reports 12/01/2016
The project:HOMES "Renew Crew" (above) recently assisted an elderly member of the Laurel Presbyterian Church in Henrico by clearing brush, trimming hedges and raking leaves in her yard.
The Renew Crew serves low-income, disabled and elderly homeowners in need of small-scale home repairs such as porch, railing and step repairs, exterior painting, clearing overgrown yards, tearing down outbuildings, wheelchair ramps and other critical repairs and accessibility modifications. > Read more.
More than 2,000 people participated in the the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Richmond Chapter's annual Richmond Walk to End Alzheimer’s Nov. 5 at Markel Plaza in Innsbrook. The event raised more than $436,000 for Alzheimer’s care, support programs and research.
The event is one of three walks that benefit the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Richmond and is held in celebration of National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month and National Family Caregivers Month.
Donations to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s will be accepted through the end of the year and can be made at http://www.alz.org/walk. In total, the three walks this year have raised more than $644,344. > Read more.
The past couple of days haven’t felt like it, but it’s finally December and this weekend is packed with holiday events. Kicking the weekend off is Glorious Christmas Nights’ production of “Finding Christmas” at West End Assembly of God. Gayton Baptist Church’s annual Jazz Nativity starts tonight. Another annual favorite is tomorrow – the tree lighting at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen. In search of Christmas concerts? The Virginians Barbershop Chorus will present its annual Christmas Show tomorrow at the Collegiate School and the Richmond Choral Society will perform Sunday at Trinity Lutheran Church. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.
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CalendarJewish Family Theatre will present “Company” Dec. 8-18 at the Weinstein JCC. From musical theatre's most renowned composer, Stephen Sondheim, “Company” is regarded as a trailblazer of the dark-comedy, modern-musical genre and is the winner of seven Tony Awards. All performances are at 7:30 p.m. except for Sunday matinees which are at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 for JCC members, $30 for nonmembers and $15 for seniors, students and groups of 10+. For details, visit http://www.weinsteinjcc.org. Full text