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Yet another college course on Taylor Swift makes clear: She's more than a pop star

Health / Lifestyles /

If she could talk to Taylor Swift, recent UC Berkeley grad Crystal Haryanto knows what she'd say:

"When I was a kid, I would listen to you because I wanted to learn everything about you. But as I grew up, I realized that I was listening to you because I was learning everything about me."

Though she may never get the chance to meet the pop star...Read more

Norman Winter/Norman Winter/TNS

On Gardening: Knights and Princesses offer everything for the garden

Health / Lifestyles /

As I was drifting off to sleep last night, I muttered to myself "Knights and Princesses" and it hit me like the proverbial ton of bricks. There was a cute marketing reason Proven Winners chose those names for their two series of lobularia or alyssum.

Little did I realize this had been addressed years ago, but I’m not the sharpest knife in the...Read more

Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Cruising is back. A new law has made lowriders legit

Health / Lifestyles /

LOS ANGELES — As a teenager in the 1970s, Jovita Arellano would perch in the window of her family's National City apartment to watch the candy-colored parade of lowriders cruise down Highland Avenue.

She loved how the light reflected off their chrome rims and the gleam of paint that had been meticulously polished. Cars would ride so close to ...Read more


How to finance a garage or detached structure and protect your home's value

Health / Lifestyles /

Detached structures are a great way to add space and value to your home. Whether it’s a workshop, storage space, garage or accessory dwelling unit (ADU), the presence of a detached structure to your property could positively impact its worth.

While the long-term benefits are great, detached structures are expensive to build. If you do not ...Read more


Ask Anna: Midlife malaise -- how to rediscover joy and purpose in your 40s and beyond

Health / Lifestyles /

Dear Anna,

As an accomplished 46-year-old man, I've seemingly achieved the dream of many. I have a beautiful house, a loving wife who has been a rock for many years and plenty of money — so why am I not happy? I grapple almost daily with feelings of restlessness, a gnawing emptiness that I can't seem to shake off, and a hollow discontentment ...Read more


Heidi Stevens: 'The lights are going out fast for boys.' New book points our focus on a crisis of self-loathing

Health / Lifestyles /

John Duffy wrote his new book with a hopeful, broken heart.

“Rescuing Our Sons: 8 Solutions to Our Crisis of Disaffected Teen Boys” is a plea for action based on Duffy’s 25 years as a family therapist, based on thousands of conversations, based on what he witnesses in boys’ eyes when they see and feel their own worth—and what he ...Read more

David Carson/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS

'These kids need us': 30 kids adopted in one day at courts celebration

Health / Lifestyles /

CLAYTON, Mo. — Mary Thomas fought back tears Saturday when she was asked before a packed St. Louis County courtroom if she and her husband were prepared to raise the three kids sitting by her side as their own.

"Absolutely, yes," she said with emotion. She held the youngest, Hanzi, in her arms. The 4-year-old girl dressed in a long party ...Read more

Daniel Kim/The Seattle Times/TNS

At CooperCon, D.B. Cooper is a mystery, a passion and a community

Health / Lifestyles /

SEATTLE — Have we checked the spare parachute packing card slot? What about the rip cords? Wait, the parachute, was it a 24-foot canopy or a 26-foot canopy? Is there DNA on the tie clip? And, my goodness, how did the money end up at Tena Bar?

The questions linger, they spiral, becoming ever more arcane.

If you're not versed, if you don't ...Read more

Ex-etiquette: When Thanksgiving traditions change

Health / Lifestyles /

Q: My ex and I do not have a formal holiday schedule because we both followed a religion that did not celebrate holidays. Our children have been brought up that way. Over the last year I have met and married someone who does not necessarily follow any religion but makes a huge deal out of Thanksgiving. Her family approaches it more as a family ...Read more

Sue Zezima/Jerry Zezima/TNS

Jerry Zezima: The heat is on

Health / Lifestyles /

I never thought I was hot stuff — especially when I look in the mirror to shave, a reflection that leaves me cold — but I sure am hot stuff now.

That’s because I have just tried the world’s hottest sauce. And I can proudly say, with some difficulty due to a scorched tongue, that I resisted the urge to call 911 so the fire department ...Read more


The Kid Whisperer: How to keep social media from making you feel like a bad parent

Health / Lifestyles /

Dear Kid Whisperer:

I have two questions for you.

Am I mean?

Also, am I a bad person?

I ask these questions because I have been seeking parenting advice on Facebook recently. I have been trying to get some answers from people on topics like when I should have my 7-year-old start doing dishes or if I should have my 11-year-old start mowing ...Read more


Erika Ettin: Are the holidays a good time for your partner to meet the family?

Health / Lifestyles /

In not-so-breaking news: The holidays are a crazy time of year. As lovely as the lights around town look and as exciting as your social calendar is, the period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day also brings on a lot of extra stress. And while exploring a relationship as the calendar is on its last page can be magical, mixing a new partner...Read more

Luis Santana/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

This Tampa Bay artist helped shaped the area's edgy art scene. Here's his story

Health / Lifestyles /

TAMPA, Fla. — It started as a typical opening reception at the University of Tampa’s Scarfone/Hartley Gallery.

On this Friday in October, guests gathered to view “B.A.S.K.: Because Art Should Kill,” a solo exhibition of Ales Bask Hostomsky’s recent works. They drank wine, nibbled on snacks, made small talk and listened to tunes spun ...Read more

Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Steve Lopez: An abrupt jump from living in a car to an apartment is 'almost a shock wave'

Health / Lifestyles /

LOS ANGELES – Early on the morning of Oct. 12, David Mays woke up in the Chevrolet he had been living in for two years, knowing this day would be different.

Safe Parking L.A. had been a blessing, providing a covered space in a downtown garage, with on-site security and access to a bathroom. That was better than sleeping on the street with one...Read more

Heidi Stevens: Painted rocks turn wind phone into space for communal healing. ' For me, it's been an act of love.'

Health / Lifestyles /

When Mary Leopold helped place a wind phone on hole 11 of Canal Shores Golf Course in Evanston, Illinois, she envisioned it as a place to connect with her late son, Oliver.

“I love the image of picking up this phone,” she said, “and your words are just carried off into the wind.”

She also envisioned it as a shared space, a meeting ...Read more

Norman Winter/Norman Winter/TNS

On Gardening: North Pole perfect choice for living Christmas tree

Health / Lifestyles /

The North Pole is waiting for you! I’m not talking about a geographic location or small village where Jolly Saint Nick and his crew are making toys, but a tree or shrub that will put you in the holiday spirit for this season and years to come. North Pole is a selection of arborvitae, Thuja occidentalis, that will have you singing "Rockin’ ...Read more

Ethan Daniels/Dreamstime/TNS

A historic Black church's new gospel in Oakland: Fight the high housing costs

Health / Lifestyles /

Four decades ago, during the heyday of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in West Oakland, California, hundreds would show up for worship on Sundays. The grand sanctuary of the historic Black church, with its stained glass windows and elegant wooden pews, got so full, if you arrived five minutes late it was standing room only.

These days, as many Black ...Read more

Hector Amezcua/The Sacramento Bee/TNS

'Fire is living': How this nature preserve uses cultural burning for regrowth

Health / Lifestyles /

Diana Almendariz often uses tule for basket weaving, but on this day she uses the dried bulrush wrapped around a cattail to carry fire across a narrow trail to a small field. She sets the tufted bundle down with intention to start the first of three new fires within a two-acre garden.

Minutes before, Eliud Rios attached a bright yellow bag to ...Read more

Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times/TNS

'It's just heartbreaking.' For Palestinian American businesses, a time of harassment -- and support

Health / Lifestyles /

LOS ANGELES — Last week, Fatmah Muhammad answered a phone call from someone who appeared to be an inquisitive customer.

He knew she was Palestinian American, the caller said, and he was interested in placing an order from her company, Knafeh Queens, which specializes in a sweet-and-savory dessert she learned to make from her mother.

“But ...Read more

Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post/TNS

Many grapple with the added financial burden as student loan payments resume

Health / Lifestyles /

DENVER — When Tracy Cunningham was 9, she’d walk down the street to pick up food for her family. Her mother was close with the owner of a deli in their hometown of West Milford, New Jersey, and he would leave leftovers from the day on top of a garbage can for them to eat.

Years later, as Cunningham was preparing to graduate from high school...Read more