The Good Life: The orphan Thanksgiving
November 24, 2011 Lisa Betz   
There is absolutely nothing in the world more effective to help one appreciate one’s own family than spending Thanksgiving as an orphan with someone else’s.

I wish I’d kept a journal of each and every orphan Thanksgiving I’ve experienced over the years. You see, in my professional actress days, I could rarely come home for turkey day. We always had rehearsal the day before and the day after and one never, ever misses a rehearsal unless one is dead or dying.

You never realize just how normal your family is until you see how other families behave around the holiday table.

There are some archetypes and dynamics you’ll find over and over. It’s kind of fun to try to pick them out of a stranger’s family once you start to recognize them.

There’s the long suffering old maid care-giving aunt and that older uncle who never married but still lives at home. Sadly, there’s often the overweight member of the family that gets picked on. I’ve seen that too many times to count.

There’s the set of young parents who just cannot manage their bratty children, and the dog who shouldn’t be inside at all but I guess they think it’s family.

There’s the hostess who must achieve perfection at all costs, even if everyone is frazzled and unhappy. There’s the lazy daughter-in-law who never helps to do the dishes.

Then there’s that relative who always brings something odd to share, like a can of vegetables, unopened. There’s often a braggart who works really hard to impress everyone.

And there seems to always be that one relative who is horrified by uncle Bobby or Jimmy’s drunkenness. I always wondered if they put on a show for me, the stranger, or if they truly were horrified.

One year, we were invited to spend the holiday with my husband’s work friend. The moment we walked in the door they put a cocktail in our hands, even though my husband didn’t drink. They seemed baffled and awkward when he asked for a coke.

Later, after too many cocktails, two people started yelling at each other. It got downright scary and we left.

A professional Thanksgiving orphan develops serious acting chops just by responding to concerned family members when things get embarrassing. I learned that my job was to smile and pretend I hadn’t noticed whatever it was. Sometimes more sensitive family members just need to be comforted by the strange cuckoo in their midst so they can shrug and go on with their family holiday.

The worst orphan Thanksgiving I experienced was hosted by a theatre that I worked for. For some reason, they chose to serve ham instead of turkey and it was in a cold hall that felt very institutional.

Now don’t get me wrong, I was as grateful as an orphan actor can be to be included in a Thanksgiving dinner put on expressly by theatre patrons but it was a test of my acting skill when I made the horrified realization that turkey would not be a feature of the day.

Of course, that also meant no stuffing. What’s the point? I started thinking of it as a company meal, it certainly didn’t feel like Thanksgiving. But then, what is Thanksgiving? Is it feasting at a table groaning with plenty?

It isn’t supposed to be only that. We are meant to give thanks for our blessings and perhaps that disappointing orphan Thanksgiving taught me this.

Even with no turkey and no stuffing and none of mom’s German rye bread, there was a sweet potato dish to beat all I’ve ever tasted and that was something to be thankful for. I really wish I’d gotten the recipe.

No matter how many times I was an orphan at Thanksgiving, I always, always missed having leftovers. Nothing makes one feel more like an orphan than going home without Thanksgiving leftovers.

Then there are those Thanksgivings when you’re invited as an honored guest by a family you may very well become part of. That happened one year when I lived in Virginia.

They were a lovely Italian family and they were looking me over as a potential daughter-in-law.

The spread was magnificent and everyone was there, even ancient old grandma who came over from Italy but was now retired in Florida. That first moment when I took my pumpkin cheesecake into the kitchen and asked where I should put it was pretty awkward though.

You would think I had loudly passed gas and then laughed about it for the reaction I received. The women present froze. No one said anything. I stood there with the heavy plate in my hand and finally just set it down somewhere there was room.

No one ever explained it but as I discovered at dessert time, a famous pumpkin roll was the only dessert served by this family and it was one woman’s crowning glory that I had apparently trampled on. My cheesecake was never cut or commented on.

That day was cut short for me because of the telling of a racist story by the family patriarch. Nope, I realized, I’m not going to fit in with that family. I think they agreed.

One year I dined at the Washington Hotel in D.C. with a boyfriend and his mother. It was all very elegant and yet it felt hollow somehow. I understood though, my date was an only child and his father had recently passed away. I’d been through that myself. It was a very sad Thanksgiving and a small one, limited to just his remaining family and myself. I believe I was a tiny light in the midst of their sadness.

I’ve always thought my family was loud and obnoxious (in a good way, of course) but after the many, many orphan Thanksgivings I’ve experienced, I wouldn’t trade my boisterous, fun family for anyone else’s. We play cards and games after the meal and genuinely have a memorable good time with each other.

I’m the weird one who goes home when the football starts unless there’s a good game of cards on. I think we’re all a little weird but my family is my brand of weird and of course, that’s the best kind, right?

I’m visiting another branch of family for Thanksgiving this year. We know that they don’t love mom’s German rye bread so we’ll do without that this year. I may not get to enjoy my favorite oyster dressing and I have no idea whether they will do a nice turkey or plan something different. My fingers are crossed for turkey though.

I’m pretty sure that nobody will drink too much and it will be me that has the unruly dog but he is my baby after all. The little kids running all over are my sweet little cousins and they are never naughty, only completely adorable. It’s going to be a joyous Thanksgiving Day.

No matter what dishes are served at table nor how you celebrate Thanksgiving, it’s easy to take one’s family for granted. Spend a few Thanksgivings without them as an orphan at someone else’s turkey (ham?) dinner and you will find that what you can be truly grateful for is family.

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39Teen Voice: Do It Anyway
39A Stray Moment: In praise of encouragement
39Observations Only: The awful truth
39Teen Voice: Sticks and stones
39Anno Domini: On this remembering day
39Observations Only: The last goodbye
39Observations Only: The last toothpick
39Teen Voice: Cyber War
39Dear Nebraskans: Technology helps serve Nebraskans
39View of the Zoo: VIPs at RCD
39Building Bridges: Awards are only part of our success
39Lyman Review: Branding Time
39At the Library: “I Shall Be Near to You” By Erin Lindsay McCabe
39Linked Lives
39Letter to the editor
39Across The Fence: Deserters or Outcasts; Three who left. (Part I)
38From the Superintendent's Desk: School Safety and Security
38Teen Voice: Living within our means
38A Stray Moment: God Knows
38The Good Life - The worst day on record at the Citizen
38Observations Only: A matter of matter
38Observations Only: Hog wash
38Lyman Review: Something wicked this way comes
38Observations Only: Fuzzy angel
38Update From the NRD: Winter has arrived
38Totally Random: Trusting the fates
38Capitol View: Considering additional education choices
38Jane’s Secret: Jane’s Secret XLV: Gun smoke
38Washington Report: Honoring America’s heroes
37From the Superintendent’s Desk - Haig and Aurora Buildings
37From the Superintendent’s Desk: Early Childhood Education
37Teen Voice: Learning calculus more than numbers
37Observations Only: Afraid of the dark
37A Small World: Legends week promises fun for everyone
37Our View: Why rush the interlocal agreement?
37Teen Voice: Thanksgiving
37Teen Voice: What is love?
37Capital View: Can prison reform survive property tax relief?
37No-till Notes: Moving forward
37Our View: Confidentiality agreement disrespectful
36A Stray Moment : Carry the weight
36Observations Only: Sister lost
36Teen Voice: Pinning your interest
36Completely Different - The magic of spring
36Teeing Off: Mind Gym
36Life in the Rearview Mirror: Adapt and adjust
36Christmas stories from Freshman Academy students
36Teen Voice: To the future
36Why you should visit the zoo in February
36Capitol View: Legislature to tackle meatier issues
36No-Till Notes: Looking Back
36Website Resources
36Lyman Review: Sheep Royalty
36Fourth of July meetings
36No-Till Notes: "Different Approaches"
35Our View: County Manager option leads to Good Old Boys' Club
35Our View: Come home to Nebraska, but not just anywhere
35From the Superintendent’s Desk - Parent Teacher Conferences
35Observations Only: Willfulness
35No-Till Notes: Joe Franks Memorial
35Teen Voice: Hope for a New Year
35Building Bridges: Building us up to be what others see
35Nature Notes: Love is in the air
35Capitol View: The Legislature did provide tax relief
35Capitol View: There was more to the session than just the big ticket items
35College Thoughts: Rotten for the minds? Think again
35Gering ninth graders answer the questions of life
34Teen Voice: Indulge In moderation
34From the Hill: More Work Ahead
34Our View: Childcare not school district’s role
34Lyman Review: Winter's dog
34Updates from NRD: NRD promotes conservation
34Teen Voice: Inspire me
34Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Governor’s Ag Conference overview
34From the Capitol: The conduct we choose reflects our character
34No-Till Notes: Back in the field
33Life in the Rearview Mirror: Life enhancing memories
33Teen Voice: The daily struggle to a lifelong battle
33Lyman Review: Dog fun
32At the Library: March into a good book
32Capitol View: It sounded like a good idea at first
31The Good Life: A time to be proud of our ancestors
31Rural America and immigration reform
31Teen Voice: Writing love on our hearts
30Anno Domini: Ask the digital dust
30Updates from NRD: Happy New Year
30Greetings from the State Capitol
29Letter to Editor clarifies drug testing policy
29Capitol View: Yes, Virginia, the Legislature has done something, so far
29Update from the NRD: March updates from the NRD
28No-Till Notes: “Fish and Mud”
27Our View: County has some ‘splainin’ to do
17Our View: Officials should take advantage of available training
12At the Monument: Living History
10Across The Fence: Captain Silas S. Soule; The face of moral courage
Most Read News Stories of 2012
456All Points West: Coming home, a veteran’s perspective on what it means
443Building Bridges – Teens in the Driver Seat is a program for LIFE
385Jane’s Secret column on hiatus
348To whom are we thankful?
260Across The Fence: Barbecue Campbell and the XIT
243A Stray Moment: To honor them all their days
236Rotary International observes World Polio Day Oct. 24
232At the Monument: Museum collections
225A Stray Moment: Thanksgiving myths and traditions
217A Stray Moment: Football – Violence, Death, and Denial
208Support letters requested for airport
204Curiosity Corner: A Christmas with Buffalo Bill
201Across The Fence: Barbecue Campbell and the XIT
189No-Till Notes: Drilling Edible Beans, part 2
186No Till Notes: Drilling edible beans
175In the Hills: Learn the Dutch Oven
173Building Bridges: Regionalism should be focus of our core-idor
171Our View: Let the downtown revitalization begin
170Building Bridges: Help! is the key word for the holidays
166No Till Notes:
158Across The Fence: The Harmar Campaign
157Letters to the Editor
153A Stray Moment: Brand new used cars
152Across The Fence: Portugee Phillips and a horse named Dandy
152Building Bridges: Turning a space into a sense of place
152Across The Fence: Over The Edge; Niagara’s Argonauts
151At the Library: Book Review: “Landline” by Rainbow Rowell
150In the Hills: Nature for the Holidays
148No-Till Notes: Dakota Lakes Dry Land Rotations
147Teen Voice: Positive effects of social media
146Building Bridges: Cleaning up for company--or not--reveals a lot
135Across the Fence: Who was Martha Jane Canary?
131At the Monument: Where are the animals?
123Barr’s Bacon Wrapped Fantasy Picks: A rookie's guide to drafting your dream team
121Across the Fence: Before Barbed Wire
118What's the deal with organic milk?
114Across the Fence: All aboard the Transcontinental Express
114Jane’s Secret, XXXIII: Night walk
114
112
110At the Monument: So You want to be a Ranger?
106Across the Fence: Ladies First or First Ladies
102Across the Fence: Roosevelt’s campaign tour of the west
94Across The Fence: The Pawnee and human sacrifice
92Across The Fence: “…a date that will live in infamy.”
91Completely Different: New Year’s Resolutions
91The Good Life: What a wild ride it’s been
87Across The Fence: Billy Dixon; Plainsman, Hunter, Indian fighter and Scout
86Across the Fence: Bose Ikard; Texas Cowboy
86Across the Fence: Celebrating the 120th anniversary of the Chadron to Chicago Cowboy Race, part II
84Completely Different: It's all in the family
84Jane’s Secret, XXV: Mysteries
83Jane’s Secret, XXVII: Town Meeting
83Completely Different: The Disney princess debate: an exercise in the ridiculous
82Observations Only: A soul’s journey
82A Stray Moment: Robin Williams – Good night sweet prince
81Across the Fence: Ah-ho-appa (fallen leaf)
81Teen Voice: Don’t be fooled by fads
80 Across the Fence: ‘Aunt Sally’ and Dakota Gold
80Building Bridges: When ‘FAMILY’ and fellow Nebraskans are all you’ve got
79Across the Fence: Black Hills Gold and the Thoen Stone
75Across the Fence: Burnett’s Mound and the Topeka tornado
75From the Superintendent’s Desk: Thanks for the memories
74Jane’s Secret, part XII: Jane's Vow
74Totally Random: The Golden Rule
74Across the Fence - Catherine’s boys
74In the Hills: Pollinators – the buzz
74Battle of Summit Springs, part II: Warpath to White Bear Creek
73Across The Fence: The Hat Creek Outpost
72At the Library: “The Master Switch” The rise and fall of information empires By Tim Wu
71A ‘city’ kid goes to the fair
70From the Superintendent’s Desk: Welcome to new certified staff
70Teen Voice: Fifty reasons to smile
70Across the Fence: Rural free delivery
70Jane’s Secret, XXX: A new wrinkle
70Across the Fence: Battle of Summit Springs, Part I: Tall Bull Killed
68Completely Different: That’s so Pinteresting
67Jane’s Secret, part XVII : Plans gone awry
67Jane’s Secret, XXIII: Molly’s plan
67Completely Different: The Marilyn Monroe conundrum
67A Stray Moment - A night owl born to an 8 to 5 world
67Across The Fence: The Pawnee on Pumpkin Creek
67Totally Random: December 6, the day I lived
67Across the Fence; Massacre on the Marias River
67Building Bridges: Save the world, educate through agriculture
67Across The Fence: A Fourth of July Montage
67Across the Fence: Here lies Major Alexander Culbertson
67Creatures of the Night
67Across the Fence: The Battle of Hungry Hill
66The Good Life: Through my father’s eyes
66Across The Fence: By the dawn’s early light
66Teen Voice: Gleek tragedy
66Jane’s Secret, XXXII Jane’s Bad Day
66Life in the Rearview Mirror: The world is a stage
66Across The Fence: The hanging of Cornelius Donahue a.k.a. John A. Hurley
65Completely Different : Could you come down off your soap box please?
65Across The Fence: The Spanish Flu
65Across The Fence: Freedom Triumphant Over War and Peace
65Thinking about Health: Getting insurance under the Affordable Care Act
65Jane’s Secret, XLI Black widow spider
65No-Till Notes: The value of water
65At the Library: Son by Lois Lowry
64Teen Voice: What’s so great about pizza?
64Across the Fence: When Fiddler quit running
64Completely Different: The game is afoot, a look at Sherlock Holmes
64Across The Fence: Amos Bad Heart Bull
64Across The Fence: Hinhan Kaga Paha
64Teen Voice: Unexpected joys of being a sibling
64Across The Fence: Steamboats on the Missouri
63Jane’s Secret, part VIII: Molly's plan
63Across the Fence: Sioux Ordnance Depot: stories to be told
63Completely Different: It’s the end of the world as we know it
63A Stray Moment: Star Trek: Infinite diversity in infinite combinations
63Building Bridges: “It’s happening” at the Harvest Festival
63Across The Fence: Grandpa’s Grays
62Across the Fence: A Cheyenne weekend
62Across The Fence: Jules, Jack and lawless justice
62Across The Fence; ‘Johnny Appleseed’ of the Oregon Trail
62Arts Scene: Theatre West’s Les Miserables not to be missed: Anniversary production proves to be a memorable winner
61Jane’s Secret, part IX: Mrs. Huber’s chagrin
61The Good Life: Hey, I’m a winner!
61A Stray Moment: Merry Christmas – God save us all
61Across the Fence: Judge Roy Bean : Texas prizefight promoter
61Across the Fence: Discovering Ed Stemler
61The Good Life: It’s hard to believe, the Citizen is four years old
61Jane’s Secret, XXVIII: Lame Johnny
61The Good Life: Cooler breezes bring anticipation of fall
61Jane’s Secret XLX: Day’s end
61No-Till Notes: A word about weed control
60Across the Fence: The Spirit of Crazy Horse
60Across the Fence: James Butler Hickok: The thoughtful gunfighter
60Miss Movies: “Bully” a powerful documentary
60Jane’s Secret, part XIII: Blackberry pie
60From the Superintendent’s Desk
60Our view: Gering’s future needs your vote
60A Stray Moment: Now is the winter of our disconnect
60Across the Fence: Class of ’67, last remnants of home
60Teen Voice:  Body bashing and self-image
60Across The Fence: The Three Guardsmen
60Jane’s Secret, XXXX: A tale of mayhem
60Totally Random: Hemp: considering the real benefits of the miracle plant
60A Stray Moment: Goodbye old house – sorting their things
60At the Library: One Zentangle a Day
60A Stray Moment: A ‘city boy’ visits the Harvest Festival
60Building Bridges: Honoring our blessings and our leaders
59Across the Fence: Lions, wolves and bears
59Jane’s Secret, part XV: Unrequited love
59From the Superintendent's Desk: NePAS – State Accountability
59From the Superintendent’s Desk : Draft Calendar 2013-14
59Across the Fence: Dull Knife’s Quest, part 1
59Completely Different: The bucket list phenomenon
59Jane’s Secret, XXIV: The last drive
59Teen Voice: Congratulations, you’re awful
59Across the Fence: Pawnee legends in the Nebraska Panhandle
59Observations Only: A sad week
59Book Review: I Forgot to Remember By Su Meck
59A look at - and helping - the State of the Valley
59
58Across the Fence: First scalp for Custer
58From the Superintendent’s Desk: Accountability
58Jane’s Secret, part XVI: Fate takes a hand
58Teen Voice: New Year’s goals
58Across the Fence: The hand dug well
58The Good Life: Today we celebrate Global Oneness Day
58Building Bridges: Be a Destination Ambassador
58Building Bridges: Oregon Trail Days—making our present a celebrated past
58Across The Fence: New England’s Heroine Scalptress
58No-Till Notes: Enjoyable Day
57The ghost of Ayn Rand
57Across the Fence: Places near forgotten
57Life in the Rearview Mirror: Cleaning off the ‘what if’ shelf
57Totally Random: I’m a backwards reader
57Building Bridges: Five years old IS a milestone
57Jane’s Secret XLVII: A stormy afternoon
56Teen Voice: I guess it’s just a western Nebraska thing
56From the Superintendent’s Desk - Option Enrollment
56Teen Voice: Dealing with stress
56A Stray Moment: For the love of theatre
56Across The Fence: Celebrating the 120th anniversary of the Chadron to Chicago Cowboy Race, part I
56 Across The Fence: County Fair
56Jane’s Secret LII: Eavesdroppers
55Across the Fence: On The road
55Jane’s Secret, part XIV: Molly’s dream
55A Stray Moment: I love Sookie Stackhouse
55From the Pastor's Pen: Lord, teach us to pray
55Totally Random: Astrology: It’s all in the stars…
55Jane's Secret, XXXI: Sixes and sevens
55Across the Fence: The Overland Camel Company
55Across the Fence: Charles Badger Clark
55Dynasty made Gering the biggest little town in Nebraska
55Jack’s Insights: A word about weed control
54Assad’s endgame
54From the Superintendent’s Desk: Parents’ role in the educational process
54Across the Fence: Tomb of the Unknown
54Observations Only: Curious things
54Across the Fence: The Pony Express
54Our View: Pipeline not a solution to oil problems
54Completely Different: The mystery of Vivian Maier
54Across the Fence: Cynthia Ann Parker, Comanche captive
54Across the Fence: When Lady Luck sleeps
54The Good Life: The lasting effects of bullying
54Teen Voice: Silence
54Across the Fence: The Colorado Coalfield War
53Across the Fence: Submarines and railroads
53Across the Fence: Faded photos and vivid memories
53A Stray Moment: World War Two is not forgotten
53A Stray Moment: All's well that ends well, usually
53Observations Only: Sisters lost, part IV
53Across the Fence: Standing on the wagon
53A Stray Moment: Tacos! Our embarrassment of riches
53Capitol View: Lincoln Highway captures spotlight
53Teeing Off: Persistence
53Building Bridges: Chautauqua will bring out the best in everyone
53Anno Domini: We gather together
53At the Library: Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson
53Across the Fence: Six went to the gallows
53In the Hills: Nebraska Bighorn Sheep
53At the Library: “My Name is Resolute” By Nancy E. Turner
53Be kind through communications
53Building Bridges: Supporting our teachers supports our children
53Jane’s Secret LI: The telling
52Across the Fence: Wyoming settlers lay siege to the TA Ranch
52Jane’s Secret, part XI: Grand Duchess
52Life in the West: Inside the minds of serial killers
52A Stray Moment: It's a dog's life
52From the Superintendent's Desk: Election over – work begins
52Miss Movies: Ten movies for romance
52From the Superintendent’s Desk - Financial Outlook for Gering Public Schools
52A Stray Moment: A voice from the past, haunting myself
52Across The Fence: Union Pacific robbery at Big Springs
52Teeing Off: Around the Green
52The Lyman Review: I love baby ducks
52Observations Only: Reality check
52No-Till Notes: Water Funding Task Force
52Totally Random: My journey, life after living
52Anno Domini: The Textbook of Freedom
52
52No-Till Notes: Different Approaches Part II
51Five Good Reasons to Create an Investment Strategy
51Life in the Rearview Mirror: The Moments we live for
51From the Pastor's Pen: Unbelievable breaking news
51Teen Voice: The need to get away
51Completely Different: Hey there, four eyes!
51Across the Fence; Prelude to the Red River War of 1874
51A Halloween Story: The scary dream
51Across The Fence: Moc-chi, A Southern Cheyenne warrior
51Across the Fence: On the Old Chisholm Trail
51Jane’s Secret: Jane’s Secret XLIV: Jail break
51Across the Fence: Old barns and memories
51Across the Fence: David F. Cook and ‘Indian Joe’
51Jane’s Secret XLVIII: Jane’s agenda
51A Stray Moment: Time to get moving
51
50Completely Different: Your local government and you
50The Block
50Miss Movies: Ten great horror flicks for Halloween, part I
50Across the Fence: Building Barns
50A Stray Moment: Ready for the storm
50Life in the Rearview Mirror: I hate coffee
50From the Superintendent’s Desk - District purchase of building
50Observations Only: Beginnings
50Teen Voice: Remember what you have
50Observations Only: The need to understand
50Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Collegebound Nebraska
50The Good Life: A holiday recipe for peace
50Building Bridges: Serve on the school board—or say no more
50Across the Fence: Missing; Nelson Buck survey party
50In the Hills: Awesome Amphibians and Rough Reptiles
50Across the Fence: Aftermath: Part III, The Battle of Summit Springs
50Across The Fence: Scalped at Plum Creek
50
50Reach out for challenges
49Teen Voice: Respond to defeat
49Across the Fence: The Wellnitz Fire, day 1 and 2
49Teen Voice: On becoming politically active
49From the Superintendent’s Desk: Current enrollment count
49Across the Fence: A boy called Slon-Ha
49Across the Fence: Sitting Bull: The Last Surrendering Sioux
49Observations Only: Critical thinking
49Observations Only : White water
49Teen Voice: What senior year taught me
49Political Cartoon by Doug Hoevet
49Capitol View: Wild life proposal costly but worthwhile
49Teen Voice: Until we say goodbye
49The Good Life: Christina Baker’s mom: Thank you
49Jane’s Secret XXXVI:  The dream
49Across The Fence: A day For thanks
49Across the Fence: A Cowboy kind of Christmas
49Miss Movies: Miss Movies recommends her top 10 films of 2013
49Building Bridges: Love your enemies
49No-Till Notes: Last chance for North, South Dakota tour
49Building Bridges: Seeking a big win out of the 4th quarter
49Across the Fence: Deserters or outcasts; Three who left (Part II)
48A Stray Moment - Celebrating Gering's Quasquicentennial
48Observations Only: The meeting
48Teen Voice: Catfished
48From the Superintendent’s Desk: Summer School – 2013
48Across the Fence: Fort Mitchell on the Great Platte River Road
48Teen Voice: By my side until the newness wears off
48Political Cartoon by Doug Hoevet
48Teen Voice: Go ahead, make my day
48Across the Fence - Boston: April 18, 1775
48Guest Voice: If I could do it over again
48Observations Only: Temptation
48Teen Voice: Say yes to branching out
48The Good Life: We are the Valley’s emissaries
48A Stray Moment: Learning how to walk
48Across The Fence: Crow Dog, Spotted Tail’s assassin
48Jane’s Secret XXXVII: A starry night
48Teen Voice: My rebellion
48Teen Voice: Holiday horrors
48Building Bridges: Tend to 2014 and be Happy, Happy, Happy
48Across the Fence: The Blizzard of ‘49
48Building Bridges: Don’t wait to develop
48New at the Zoo: Volunteer at the Zoo
48Across The Fence: Justice in the Big Horn Basin
48Sychronicity: Thrive, don't just survive
47Life in the Rearview Mirror: I’m on a road to someplace
47Across the Fence: Consumed by fire
47Cat on a Hot Tin Roof a mixed bag
47A Stray Moment: Waiting on a train
47Guest Editorial: Fischer will see U.S. ‘living within means’
47From the Superintendent’s Desk: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
47Jane’s Secret, Part XVIV: Crystal Waters
47Across the Fence: Dull Knife’s Quest: Part 2 of 2
47Observations Only: Sisters lost, part two
47The Good Life: Mom, my partner in life
47Observations Only: A gift of serenity
47Teeing Off: Lessons learned from golf
47Anno Domini: The memorial nobody wants
47Lyman Review: Devil calf
47Teen Voice: Stress test
47Teen Voice: Is respect dead?
47Building Bridges: Being grateful for the hardships in life
47A real leaning tree Christmas
47Across the Fence: Prelude to Battle
47View from Capitol Hill: Solutions for our economy and the budget
47Fellow Nebraskans: Congratulations on graduation day
47No-Till Notes:Enjoyable meeting
47History Revisited:A Stray Moment: Life (and death) on the Oregon Trail
47Building Bridges: Fair time—learn, respect, appreciate, enjoy!
47
47
46The zombie apocalypse and you
46Teen Voice: Today’s television
46Jane’s Secret, part XVIII : Devil’s bargain
46Across the Fence: Bloody Pocket, the final battle
46Observations Only: Journey's end
46A Stray Moment: - The case for Hagel
46Completely Different: What’s speech got to do with it?
46Across the Fence: Fact, fiction or fragmented dreams?
46Observations Only: Expect the best, part II
46A Stray Moment: Earth Day, am I doing my part?
46Across the Fence: Cheyenne County, Nebraska: cattle country
46Jane’s secret, XXVI: The suitcase
46Life in the Rearview Mirror: Greensburg strong
46The Good Life: Extending grace, the lost art
46Observations Only: Divine spirit
46Across The Fence: The Heartland plague of 1874-75
46Teen Voice - On the outside looking In
46A Small World: Savoring county fair days
46Teen Voice: The rivalry
46Building Bridges: Observing bullies, abuse and pastors
46Building Bridges: Planning now for tourism season 2014
46Final Point: Golf, cross country feats headline fall season successes
46Lyman Review: Goat-chasing cardio
46No-Till Notes: Plan to attend 2014 No-Till Conference
46Coach Schadwinkel promoted strong sense of tradition
46SBNM View: Do you want to be a VIP?
46Across the Fence: John Colter, the first mountain man
46In the Hills: Arbor Day in Nebraska
46Jane’s Secret: Jane’s Secret, XLIII: Jail house rock
46Capitol View: The 103rd Legislature is history … finally
46Across the Fence: Investigation at Spring Creek
46No-Till Notes: Annual PNTP Tour
46In the Hills: Get to Know Our Feathered Travelers
45Observations Only: Little Girl Lost, part six
45Being a Nebraskan – border to border
45Observations Only: A new direction
45The hills, part 1: Mustangs
45From the Superintendent’s Desk: Get ready for Parent-teacher conferences
45Across the Fence : November 1864: Pole Creek, Politics and Patriots
45The Good Life: The best Christmas gift
45Teen Voice: Body image
45Anno Domini: Independence, an ideal worth celebrating
45Observations Only: Indifferent love
45Totally Random: Life’s ripples
45Lyman Review: One mean chicken
45Observations Only: Saint Marge
45Observations Only: The visit
45Lyman Review: The love goat
45Observations Only: Gone away
45Thinking About Health: The challenge of signing up for Obamacare
45Teen Voice: The gift of caring
45Across the Fence: New eyes on the Panhandle
45Jane’s Secret: Jane’s Secret, XLII: Sunflowers
45Building Bridges: Be American - help your candidate
45Across the Fence: Roy Bean; scoundrel with a law book
45Dear Nebraskans: Massachusetts should not determine Nebraska’s Presidential vote
45Across the Fence: Amanda
45What’s really going on with our water?
45Final Point: Citizen receives first honor for ‘Final Point’
45No-til Notes: Changing plans
45Jane’s Secret XLIX: Phillip’s agenda
45Prairie Dogs
45At the Monument: Night Sky
45Jack’s Insights: Knowing harvest
45Across The Fence: Battle of the Wabash: St. Clair’s Defeat
44Observations Only : The orphanage
44A Stray Moment: On Canada and the forgotten bicentennial
44Observations Only: Just around the corner
44A Stray Moment: In praise of silence
44Observations Only: North Powder
44Miss Movies: Ten great horror flicks for Halloween, part 2
44From the Superintendent's Desk: PLAS School
44Observations Only: Curious things, part II
44Completely Different: The good, the bad, and the remedy
44I'm falling for Tumblr?
44Observations Only: Sisters lost, part III
44Observations Only: A soul's journey, part III
44Completely Different: Do you know John Green?
44Teen Voice: Previously unwritten cell phone rules
44Teen Voice: Being a girl
44A Stray Moment: Having a blast on the Fourth of July
44A Stray Moment: Without a net
44Completely Different: I go to seek a Great Perhaps
44Teeing Off: The thing about state
44A Small World: Special guest
44
44Observations Only: The unvarnished truth
44Jane's Secret XXXIV: Gin Rummy
44Jane’s Secret XXXV: Bugs and things
44Building Bridges: Celebrating the Bulldog homecoming
44Totally Random: October, the pink month
44Jane’s Secret, XXXVIII: Bad girls
44Across The Fence: Last Christmas
44Across The Fence: Mustangs on Pumpkin Creek
44Welcome to the ‘New’ in Gering
44Across The Fence: Crazy Horse’s Last Battle
44Teen Voice: Family for all intents and purposes
44Across the Fence: The Cholera Corridor
44Religious freedom must be protected
44Capitol View: Legislature overrides gubernatorial vetoes
44Across the Fence: The Spring Creek Raid
44No-Till Notes: "Harvest"
44Building Bridges: Know DOVES and know about domestic violence
44Across the Fence: The Battle of Coon Creek
43It's a small world : Everything we do has meaning
43Completely Different: Tales from the mat
43Time keeps flowing like a river
43Jane’s Secret, part II: Gertrude’s choice
43Completely Different: The Quest
43From the Superintendent’s Desk : Thank You for another Great Year
43Teen Voice: Confessions of the financially disabled
43Miss Movies: Top Ten Holiday Films
43Across the Fence: Wasicu Wakan
43Observations Only: The shadow of error
43Observations Only: A matter of paradox
43The Good Life: Innovation and young energy enriches us all
43The Good Life: The two different types of business people
43Teen Voice: The Other Side
43Observations Only: The vision
43Across The Fence: Billy Dixon at Adobe Walls, June 1874
43Building Bridges: Following the spirit of Gering
43Our View: Community responsible for kids
43Lyman Review: Taste of boot?
43Building Bridges: Objectivity and fairness make a winning plan
43Teen Voice: Where is the love?
43Capitol View: State aid proposal just might make some sense
43Mayor’s Monthly: Moving on Gering’s momentum
43Jane’s Secret XLVI: Sour grapes
43Building Bridges: Dive into summer—dive into living
43No Till Notes: Final Stop
43Across The Fence: The Eighth Wonder of the World
42Teen Voice: Thank you, Gering Speech Team
42Across the fence: Something worth remembering
42Across the Fence: Just For the Thrill of It
42Theatre West’s Cabaret torch burns brightly
42From the Superintendent's Desk: Thank You
42Observations Only: Painting a picture
42Miss Movies: The top ten films of 2012: The year of the geek
42Teen Voice: Twitter as sleep criminal
42Our View: The elephant in the room
42The Good Life: A farm girl in my heart
42Observations Only: Good and evil
42Life in the Rearview Mirror: Experiencing life passion
42Guest Voices…
42Teen Voice: What diabetes taught me
42Observations Only: Off to the races
42Teen Voice: Saying Goodbye
42Building Bridges: “New” will become a buzzword in the Valley
42Lyman Review: Now that's a set of handlebars!
42Across The Fence: First train from Saply Grove
42Guest Editorial: The future of health care at Regional West
42Teen Voice: Nobody else can lower you
42Observations Only: A day in August
42Teen Voice: Shopping days or holidays?
42Teen Voice: My School, Their Rules
42Dear Nebraskans: Nebraska is the place for business
42Teen Voice: Footprints
42Notes from NRD: Thanks agricultural producers
42Capitol View: Delay tactics a gamble as session draws to a close
42Capitol View: Redistricting needs new procedure
42No-Till Notes: American Society of Agronomy
41Completely Different: Look around, what are you missing?
41Across the Fence: The Soldier’s Free Homestead Colony of Gibbon
41Do You Tube?
41Across the Fence: The much maligned Ms. Watson
41Completely Different: Remembering Aurora
41Across the Fence: The Great Solomon River Stampede
41Teen Voice: The more the merrier
41Teen Voice: Not just another ride
41Completely Different: Confessions of an out of shape twenty something
41A Stray Moment: Guilty pleasures
41Completely Different: Happy Hollowthanksmas
41Observations Only: Musings of an odd duck
41Teen Voice: Serendipity
41Jane’s Secret, part XXII: While the cat’s away
41Observations Only: Expect the best
41Jane’s Secret, XXIX: Fred’s debacle
41Welcome to Gering and the 92nd Oregon Trail Days Celebration.
41Observations Only: Waiting time
41Totally Random: Happy Halloween
41Teen Voice: Self-expression
41Lyman Review: The elusive farm cat
41Observations Only: The vigil
41Observations Only: Final moment
41Dear Fellow Nebraskans: We Are Proud of the Nebraska National Guard
41Teen Voice: Trouble Maker or Hard Worker?
41Across the Fence: Remembering English Joe
41Capitol View: Clock keeps tickin,’ many issues remain unresolved
41At the Zoo: Spring in to the zoo
41Support emergency services personnel
41No-Till Notes: Cheat grass
41At the Monument: Junior Rangers
41Synchronicity:What brings me back
41Letters to the Editor
41Gering freshmen introduce personalities, styles: Writing assignment encourages students to let individualism shine
40Elizabeth's top ten movie list of 2011
40A last look at the Nebraska Zone
40Lyman Review: Let’s get back to the subject of bullying
40Across the Fence: A hometown 4th of July
40Home of the Brave
40Across the Fence: Mud Springs revisited
40A Small World: Scotts Bluff Valley Fiber Arts Fair classes offer great variety
40Remembering When
40Observations Only: The two faces of poverty
40Miss Movies: Top ten holiday films, part II
40Across the Fence: Wounded Knee; December 29, 1890
40Teen: Voice : Drinking enough water
40Observations Only: Going home
40Observations Only: A soul's journey, part two
40Observations Only: A fine line
40Observations Only: Choices
40The Good Life: People of the Valley, we have a choice
40Life in the Rearview Mirror: Work is more than a four-letter word
40Observations Only: Divine prompts
40Completely Different: Perfect memories made in imperfect moments
40Teen Voice: I’ll be healthy – tomorrow
40Observations Only: A good daughter
40A Small World: Chokecherry season evokes memories of yesterday
40Observations Only: One more time
40 Across the Fence: Remembering Armistice Day
40Up The Creek Without A Paddle: The NRD wants to do what with your money?
40Lyman Review: Nudge to the Butt
40Totally Random: Where does it go?
40At the Monument: That old (historic) building
40Building Bridges: Pause a moment...save a child’s life
40Building Bridges: Asking officials to speak and work as a body
40At the Monument: Art in National Parks
40In the Hills: Explore the state parks
40Teen Voice: Home is where the heart is
40For the love of the game – best courses in the valley
40Their View: Goal post move unfair
40Teen Voice: The clock is ticking
40Building Bridges: #speaklife is a goal for students, a goal for all
39Observations only : Sisters of the world
39Teen Voice: Just ten minutes
39My mini Pen and me
39Teen Voice: Experiencing versus remembering
39Teen Voice: Let us be beautiful
39LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Gering Public Schools seeks imput
39A Stray Moment: The last time
39Observations Only: Blue chip stock
39Teen Voice: Practice makes perfect
39Teen Voice: Happy news
39Observations Only: Uneventful flight
39Life in the Rearview Mirror: Personal control of an individual response
39Jane’s Secret, part XX: Change of plans
39Teen Voice: Equality
39Jane’s Secret, part XXI: Gertrude’s Agenda
39Teen Voice: The benefits of online learning
39Teen Voice: Go ahead, make my day
39Teen Voice: Shadow art
39Teen Voice: Do It Anyway
39A Stray Moment: In praise of encouragement
39Observations Only: The awful truth
39Teen Voice: Sticks and stones
39Anno Domini: On this remembering day
39Observations Only: The last goodbye
39Observations Only: The last toothpick
39Teen Voice: Cyber War
39Dear Nebraskans: Technology helps serve Nebraskans
39View of the Zoo: VIPs at RCD
39Building Bridges: Awards are only part of our success
39Lyman Review: Branding Time
39At the Library: “I Shall Be Near to You” By Erin Lindsay McCabe
39Linked Lives
39Letter to the editor
39Across The Fence: Deserters or Outcasts; Three who left. (Part I)
38Observations Only: Little Girl Lost: Adopted
38The Good Life: Campaign ad using Jesus goes too far
38Age of reason
38Teen Voice: Sticks and stones
38It's no surprise
38From the Superintendent's Desk: Our goal: Improve student performance
38Teen Voice: The road of hatred
38Completely Different: The Hills, part 2: The Civilian Conservation Corps
38Observations Only: A strange Thanksgiving
38From the Superintendent's Desk: School Safety and Security
38Teen Voice: Living within our means
38A Stray Moment: God Knows
38The Good Life - The worst day on record at the Citizen
38Observations Only: A matter of matter
38Observations Only: Hog wash
38Lyman Review: Something wicked this way comes
38Observations Only: Fuzzy angel
38Update From the NRD: Winter has arrived
38Totally Random: Trusting the fates
38Capitol View: Considering additional education choices
38Jane’s Secret: Jane’s Secret XLV: Gun smoke
38Washington Report: Honoring America’s heroes
37Teen Voice : Leave your legacy
37Observations Only - Two ages of man
37Jane’s Secret, part V: Aggie’s complaint
37SELL-OUT!
37Jane’s Secret, part VI: Molly’s surprise
37From the Superintendent's Desk: Student transportation changes for 2012-13
37LETTER TO THE EDITOR: No tax state unrealistic
37Observations Only: Sister odyssey
37Teen Voice: An eventful homecoming
37Completely Different: How the savings stole Christmas
37Teen Voice: Eighth day of the week - Someday
37Across the Fence: Thanks for the memory
37From the Superintendent’s Desk - Haig and Aurora Buildings
37From the Superintendent’s Desk: Early Childhood Education
37Teen Voice: Learning calculus more than numbers
37Observations Only: Afraid of the dark
37A Small World: Legends week promises fun for everyone
37Our View: Why rush the interlocal agreement?
37Teen Voice: Thanksgiving
37Teen Voice: What is love?
37Capital View: Can prison reform survive property tax relief?
37No-till Notes: Moving forward
37Our View: Confidentiality agreement disrespectful
36Observations Only: Sisters lost, part I
36Our view . . .Sports Complex
36Livestock Production: My Paradigm Shift
36Seeing the works of the master
36Observations Only: Blinders aren’t just for horses
36View from the block
36Teen Voice: Not according to the plan
36The Good Life: Your dollar is a vote for what you care about
36Lyman Review: Hubby’s got my goat
36Teen Voice: Lessons I learned from my eight-year-old brother
36Observations Only: No thank you
36Completely Different: The Hills, part 3: Rediscovering the spirit
36The Good Life: Leave the quilt shop and laundromat alone
36Teen Voice: Sit back and enjoy YouTube
36Teen Voice: Outbreak of the Gamers
36A Stray Moment : Carry the weight
36Observations Only: Sister lost
36Teen Voice: Pinning your interest
36Completely Different - The magic of spring
36Teeing Off: Mind Gym
36Life in the Rearview Mirror: Adapt and adjust
36Christmas stories from Freshman Academy students
36Teen Voice: To the future
36Why you should visit the zoo in February
36Capitol View: Legislature to tackle meatier issues
36No-Till Notes: Looking Back
36Website Resources
36Lyman Review: Sheep Royalty
36Fourth of July meetings
36No-Till Notes: "Different Approaches"
35Life in the Rearview Mirror: Invisible scars have lasting effects
35We need a few good people
35Curiosity Corner : The tale of the travelling train station
35Permission to remember
35Trash cans
35Economic development update
35Observations Only: The joy of money
35Life in the Rearview Mirror: Is it possible to just drive in the 21st Century?
35Observations Only: What's in a word?
35Jane's Secret, part X: The arrival
35Observations Only: Giving up
35From the Superintendent's Desk: School year now in full swing
35From the Superintendent's Desk: Why so soon?
35From the Superintendent's Desk: State report card
35Observations Only: Scourge of violence
35Our View: County Manager option leads to Good Old Boys' Club
35Our View: Come home to Nebraska, but not just anywhere
35From the Superintendent’s Desk - Parent Teacher Conferences
35Observations Only: Willfulness
35No-Till Notes: Joe Franks Memorial
35Teen Voice: Hope for a New Year
35Building Bridges: Building us up to be what others see
35Nature Notes: Love is in the air
35Capitol View: The Legislature did provide tax relief
35Capitol View: There was more to the session than just the big ticket items
35College Thoughts: Rotten for the minds? Think again
35Gering ninth graders answer the questions of life
34Our View: Museum merger a good thing, but let’s go slowly
34Life in the west: Betting on the end of the world
34Observations Only: Little girl lost, part 3
34Letter to the Editor
34Our View... Preserve Gering’s form of government
34 Taking a big risk
34Our View: Extreme caution needed with fireworks
34Jane’s Secret, part VII Clem’s confession
34Practice safe barbecue basics
34The Good Life: Our most precious right, gagged
34Guest Editorial: Bob Kerrey is the true fiscal conservative
34Their View: Hey Gering, mind your own business!
34Teen Voice: Indulge In moderation
34From the Hill: More Work Ahead
34Our View: Childcare not school district’s role
34Lyman Review: Winter's dog
34Updates from NRD: NRD promotes conservation
34Teen Voice: Inspire me
34Dear Fellow Nebraskans: Governor’s Ag Conference overview
34From the Capitol: The conduct we choose reflects our character
34No-Till Notes: Back in the field
33Our view... Gering stands upon important threshold
33Teen Voice: March Madness
33Bright Ideas, Brighter Future: Leaving a Legacy
33Our View: Scottsbluff attitude damages future collaborations
33Life's curve balls
33Lyman Review - Tales of the renegade rooster
33Teen Voice: 'Pretty Little Liars'
33Observations Only: Extreme measures
33Silence please
33Observations Only: Counting chickens
33Observations Only: Together again
33Completely Different: The Mind Palace Memory Technique
33Observations Only: Surprises
33The Good Life: The economic footprint of one small business
33The Good Life: A very interesting meeting indeed
33Life in the Rearview Mirror: Life enhancing memories
33Teen Voice: The daily struggle to a lifelong battle
33Lyman Review: Dog fun
32A Small World: Time traveling
32Observations Only : Mission accomplished
32Our View: Mayor should insist on civility
32Social time has important benefits
32Timing makes perfect
32Pulpit of Bones: Man's best friend
32Observations Only: Spider adventure
32The Good Life: We are not separate, we are one family
32Life in the Rearview Mirror: The cumulative effects of giving
32At the Library: March into a good book
32Capitol View: It sounded like a good idea at first
31Welcome to Gering
31Observations Only: Wilkerson Pass
31Teen Voice: Making sense of the Sandy Hook tragedy
31The Good Life: A time to be proud of our ancestors
31Rural America and immigration reform
31Teen Voice: Writing love on our hearts
30Observations Only: Saturday delight
30Anno Domini: Ask the digital dust
30Updates from NRD: Happy New Year
30Greetings from the State Capitol
29Bright Ideas! Brighter Future! Common sense prevails
29Our View: Visionaries wanted
29Letter to Editor clarifies drug testing policy
29Capitol View: Yes, Virginia, the Legislature has done something, so far
29Update from the NRD: March updates from the NRD
28From the Superintendent's Desk: Elementary attendance areas
28No-Till Notes: “Fish and Mud”
27Our View: Bravo OTD committee
27Our View: County has some ‘splainin’ to do
26My Thanksgiving prayer
17Our View: Officials should take advantage of available training
12At the Monument: Living History
10Across The Fence: Captain Silas S. Soule; The face of moral courage
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