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How the Hen House Turns: Dogs As Bird-Sitters

on July 26, 2013 - 6:42am
How the Hen House Turns
Column by Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.

Dogs As Bird-Sitters

When our first chickens arrived in a cardboard box 40 years ago, including Peeper's mom Peeky, we had already adopted Poncho.

As a "Santa Fe Shepherd," his instincts were just about right. He helped us herd the chickens back into the pen for the night. (Chickens don't herd, but that's another story.)

We didn't try to train Poncho as a sheepdog, but we did train DeeDee and Scooter, pointer-heeler shelter dogs we adopted after the 2000 fire in Los Alamos.

Column: Fall Prevention and Improving Gait and Balance through Exercise

on July 25, 2013 - 8:07am
Fitness Column

Fall Prevention and Improving Gait and Balance through Exercise

Proper balance and gait are essential components of physical function. If a person is going to be able to perform most activities of daily living, they need to have the capacity to safely stand and walk.

There are many causes of affected gait and balance including chronic disease, muscle weakness, neurological conditions, aging, cognitive impairments, and extremity disabilities.

Balance is a person’s ability to control upright posture under a variety of conditions.

Solo Traveler: Tours

on July 24, 2013 - 8:19am
Solo Traveler: Tours

Those of us who travel independently sometimes have disdain for tours. We know how much things generally cost and think tours are often a rip-off.

I do not enjoy being taken to a restaurant the tour company has chosen, and then told what to order off a limited “tourist” menu. And I’ve come to despise being taken to a “crafts workshop” that is actually nothing more than a high priced trinket store on the pretext of a “cultural” experience.

But sometimes I opt for day-tours so I can be assured of getting to the places of interest in relative

Food on the Hill: Yeast Rolls

on July 23, 2013 - 8:32am
This Week's Recipe:
Yeast Rolls

Photo by Sue York/


  • 1 pkg. dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup lukewarm water(90-95 degrees)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup scalded milk (just until you see small bubbles on the edge of the pan)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • About 4 cups of sifted flour


Photo by Sue York/

Proof yeast: Mix yeast and warm water and 1/2 teaspoon of the sugar and set aside. Wait about 5 minutes to see small bubbles on top (then ready to use)

Photo by Sue York/

While waiting for the yeast to proof, in another large bowl add the

Scribble Works Reviews: 'DESPICABLE ME 2'

on July 23, 2013 - 8:23am

Naftali Burakovsky, left, and Lorenzo Venneri
Scribble Works Reviews

DESPICABLE ME 2: Funny, Stupid, and Quite Good

Despicable Me 2, directed by animation heavyweights Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin, follows the story of the villain-turned-father Gru (Steve Carell.) Gru’s adventure to defeat a new supervillain and discover love along the way is both hilarious and enjoyable to watch.

Since this is an animated comedy, we can’t look at it as anything more. There is little to criticize, and although Despicable Me 2 is certainly not an excellent

Column: A Novel Economic Development Model

on July 22, 2013 - 11:52am
A Novel Economic Development Model
Column by Liviu Popa-Simil and Dave Jones

We've heard about economic development in Los Alamos many times and, in our opinion, the way it’s presently conceived and practiced, it’s simply counterproductive because it is not compatible with present reality or future predictions for our community, and we badly need another business development program, supported by the community.

The present economic reality for Los Alamos is:

  • The population is continuously decreasing by >3 percent since 2000, and by 2020 the median age will be above 50, making Los Alamos

Yang: (Sometimes) Ignorance Is Bliss … Unless It’s By Design

on July 22, 2013 - 6:55am
(Sometimes) Ignorance Is Bliss … Unless It’s By Design

First, an update on the previous column, a fantasy regarding goats and bureaucracy. It could be real!

Washington Post had a story about a magician, his rabbit and bureaucracy (link listed below.) The magician had to file a “Rabbit Disaster” plan to satisfy an antiquated rule of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Evidently, the magician’s license was contingent on his rabbit rather than on his skills. My column was a pure fantasy, but maybe it was not so far-fetched?! 

Today, I want to tie “compartmentalization” and

Hannemann's Music Corner: Ain't Live Performance Fun

on July 21, 2013 - 7:39am
Hannemann's Music Corner: Ain't Live Performance Fun

Okay, for a bit of levity ...

In the late 80s to early 90s I was playing a lot in Santa Monica and I worked with some very talented musicians. We were a fairly tight group visiting each other at our various venues regularly during breaks. We traded licks, sat in with one another, borrowed strings ─ “Hey, you got a spare G string?" ─ which in my case was a bit absurd given that I was the only one playing a nylon string guitar and I got to carrying a set of steel strings in my case even though I don't use them.


Ask the Life Coach: Motivation - The Achilles Heel of Success

on July 20, 2013 - 8:48am
Ask The Life Coach: En Route to Happiness

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend doing it daily.” ─Zig Zigler

 I thought I found the perfect quote to inspire and engage summer students at the Los Alamos National Laboratory who attended my seminar about life coaching. To say their reaction was lukewarm would be an understatement. They did not laugh. They did not disagree.

 It occurred to me I must have hit a nerve as most of them admitted that motivation is their Achilles heel.

Money IQ: True Stories - A Credit Card Dispute Lost and Won

on July 17, 2013 - 9:34am

Money IQ
True Stories: A Credit Card Dispute Lost and Won
By Fidel Gutierrez

Note: This column is a real-life example of a credit card dispute commonly referred to as a “dispute of quality.” This is a dispute about the quality of goods and services received. The other type of dispute is a billing error dispute. Billing error disputes are fairly straight forward and are regulated by the Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA.) The FCBA rules and rights do not apply if you are disputing the quality of goods and services.

The Pain Free Athlete: Reduce Lower Back Pain by Increasing Hip Mobility

on July 17, 2013 - 8:23am

Jessica Kisiel
The Pain Free Athlete

Reduce Lower Back Pain by Increasing Hip Mobility

Many of my posture alignment clients suffer from painful lower back conditions - sciatica, bulging or herniated discs, SI joint dysfunction, stenosis, etc.

Upon examination I find that their hips have restricted movement. The hips and lower back are connected though the pelvis. Your hip muscles attach to the pelvis from below and the lower back muscles attach to the pelvis from above. Tight hips can lead to compensations in the back that can cause pain and injury.


How the Hen House Turns: Peeper, Hatching in a Dry Climate

on July 17, 2013 - 7:49am
How the Hen House Turns
Column by Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.
Peeper, Hatching in a Dry Climate

Ms. Ritz, the miniature Mallard, has been sitting on her eggs since June 21, so it's time to talk about our first egg-hatching adventure.
For four weeks in 1975, Peeky, a mixed-breed hen, sat in the Hen House on 12 eggs, resting on straw in a 12 by 12 by 1 inch frame.

Over her objections, we made sure she got up each day to eat and poop, and we used the time to turn and spray her eggs. Shell membranes can go dry and tough in a climate with single-digit humidity.

On the 22nd morning, a

Food on the Hill: Baked Swiss Eggs

on July 16, 2013 - 9:08am
This Week's Recipe:
Baked Swiss Eggs
Photo by Sue York/


For each person:

  • 1 tablespoon cream
  • 1 oz.-1 1/2 oz. Swiss cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • Salt and pepper
  • Non-stick vegetable spray


For each person, one small ramekin, or they can be made in muffin tins (sprayed very well with non-stick spray.) If you use a muffin tin, after they are cooked run a knife around the edge of each egg and lift them out with a spoon.

Photo by Sue York/

Spray each ramekin with non-stick spray. Put in cream, egg and cheese in that order. Add salt and pepper.

Column: Proper Posture Through Back Strengthening

on July 16, 2013 - 8:39am
Fitness Column

Proper Posture Through Back Strengthening

Proper posture is a necessary component of a person’s overall healthy lifestyle.

But an increasing number of people are experiencing posture problems. Improper posture is most often exhibited by a person having a forward lean at the waist and a forward rounding of the shoulders.

Postural problems occur and increase gradually over time. As the forward lean and rounding increase, a person’s center of gravity is moved forward as well.

Yang: A Summer Fantasy - This One Involves Goats and Bureaucracy

on July 15, 2013 - 8:11am
A Summer Fantasy: This One Involves Goats and Bureaucracy 

Author’s note: Since this is a fantasy, let’s pretend that you don’t know where I live and what organization I refer to in this piece.

A nearby community college recently purchased two goats, mother and kid, to handle the landscape maintenance on their 60+ acre campus. The groundskeeper could not keep up with the invasive trees, shrubs, and weeds. He didn’t want to use herbicides for fear of contaminating the running water.

Solo Traveler: Free Lodging, Part II

on July 14, 2013 - 9:45am
Solo Traveler: Free Lodging Part II

In the previous column, I talked about people swapping their homes for free lodging on trips.

But for those who don’t yet own a home, and/or are still energetic and adventurous, there are more interesting alternatives: WWOOF, WorkAway, and volunteer programs.

WWOOF stands for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms and WorkAway gives you a chance to work away from your comfort zone.

On both websites people who need some help with a farm, business, or home, advertise room and board in exchange for about twenty hours of work

5-Steps To A Clutter Free House

on July 14, 2013 - 8:40am
5-Steps To A Clutter Free House (that’s easier to sell)
By James Chrobocinski

Decluttering is one of the first things to do before you list your home, but the process of decluttering can be frustrating for many.

Follow these five clutter-tackling steps to increase the value of your home (and enjoy your space.)

  • Start with a small area.

Closet, shelves and cupboards are good starting points. By marking of a small and well-defined area you make it possible to finish the job in less than a half-hour and gain the satisfaction of seeing your results.

If you get frustrated with, put off dealing

How the Hen House Turns: Lucy Arrives at the Hen House

on July 12, 2013 - 7:51am

How the Hen House Turns: Lucy Arrives at the Hen House
Column by Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.

Lucy goose was raised by 4-H girls in Wyoming. When fully grown, she and two nestlings were adopted by my neighbor’s grandmother. During the first night in their new home, a Wyoming fox killed Lucy’s two companions. The next day Lucy found herself in a car with Grandma and my neighbor’s aunt, heading for New Mexico.

Since she was imprinted with human female company, Lucy greeted female humans with calm indifference. However, as we soon learned, she didn’t care for male humans.

Nutrition and Weight Management

on July 11, 2013 - 8:21am
Fitness Column
Nutrition and Weight Management

With the summer season in full swing, now might be a good time to think about your nutrition plan and the role it plays in your life.

Daily, I address this issue with people who are looking to change the way they eat and who want to develop a nutrition plan that helps them achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

Proper nutrition, combined with an exercise program consisting of muscle strengthening, cardiovascular endurance training, and increased flexibility, will help you reach your goals and enjoy a better life.

For the

Hygea Health Bite: Save Money With Easy Do-It-Yourself Household Cleaners

on July 9, 2013 - 6:35am
Hygea Health Bite: Save Money With Easy Do-It-Yourself Household Cleaners

It’s hard enough to make dinner. Why on earth would you want to spend time making your own cleaning products, you ask?

It’s a good question. Making your own anything (especially the first time) can seem daunting and like too much of a hassle. I hear you but I can tell you that it’s not only easier than you think but also incredibly worthwhile.

Benefits of DIY Cleaners…

  • Huge money-saving potential;
  • Fast and easy to make;
  • Peace of mind that your clean home is also safe; and
  • Essential oils actually

Hannemann's Music Corner: And Now, A Word From Your Instrument

on July 9, 2013 - 6:30am
Hannemann's Music Corner: And Now, A Word From Your Instrument
First, for purposes of discussion, there are five levels of instruments, to wit: beginning, student, intermediate (also referred to as step-up or performance), professional and custom. 
Generally, the first three are "production" meaning that they are manufactured to consistent specifications.

Food on the Hill: Mushroom Tart

on July 9, 2013 - 6:19am

This Week's Recipe:
Mushroom Tart
Photo by Sue York/


1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
1 egg, mixed
Parchment paper, sprayed on one side with vegetable spray
6 oz of mixed mushrooms, sliced ( I used oyster and baby bella)
3 tablespoons of butter
Vegetable spray (Pam)
1 teaspoon dried thyme
4 sprigs of fresh rosemary (2 for cooking and 2 for garnish)
2 cloves of garlic, pressed
1 tablespoon flour
1/3 cup plus 3 tablespoons cream


Photo by Sue York/

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Solo Traveler: Free Lodging, Part I

on July 8, 2013 - 9:03am

Solo Traveler: Free Lodging Part I

I have mentioned in previous columns how traveling solo over many months can be rather expensive. And I’ve talked about house sitting as an alternative to paying for expensive hotel rooms. But there is another excellent way for people to travel without paying a dime for lodging.

For those who own homes, the cheapest way to travel abroad is to trade houses with other people.

I’ve had friends express horror at the thought of strangers using their stuff, and possibly stealing or breaking their things.

Sydney's Corner: Food of the Netherlands

on July 8, 2013 - 8:08am

Sydney Frazier, 8, with Poffertjes. Photo by Jason Frazier


Introduction by Teralene Foxx of Los Alamos

I have previously updated you on the around the world travels of our daughter Kerri Foxx Frazier, Jason Frazier and their 8-year-old daughter Sydney. Every week, as part of her home schooling Sydney does a blog of something she has found interesting. Having just been in the Netherlands on a river cruise, I found this blog about her experience with food in the Netherlands delightful and wanted to share it with you.


Column: If You Want to Sell Your House ... You Have to Let Go

on July 8, 2013 - 7:02am
If You Want to Sell Your House ... You Have to Let Go

During my career as a Realtor, I have noticed a common obstacle that sellers face – they are too attached.

It’s perfectly understandable. After growing up in a house, raising children in a house, and adding countless personal touches, it becomes a “home.” Nostalgia makes it hard to see things from the buyer’s perspective.

When it is time to sell, you need to take a step back and go back to thinking of it as a house – just brick and mortar.

Here are a few ways you can disassociate yourself from your house before you