Formulating a $31.9 billion budget for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is a big undertaking.
Putting together our annual budget is an essential part of my job as a state legislator and a responsibility I take very seriously.
A few weeks ago, I was making some toast in the toaster oven for breakfast. Little did I know, there were crumbs on the bottom just waiting to be burned.
Within a few seconds to a minute, a small flame started in the toaster oven, and I had a mini freak-out.
Not knowing exactly what to do correctly, on the spur of the moment, I unplugged the toaster oven and waited for a few seconds to see if the flame decreased. Thankfully, it did.
I wonder why when God gave us hair, he didn’t take a bit more care.
It seems as though he got confused and got mixed up with what he used!
The heads with lots of hair on top complain it’s too much work to crop,
While balding ones would surely pay to keep the hair some throw away.
The ones with natural curly hair don’t seem to want the curls up there.
Still others have to work and save to get their super-curly wave.
Red heads change their hair to black, then turn around and grow it back.
Sixteen years is a long time. I don’t think I realized just how long until I started cleaning out my office desk.
It’s been 16 years and about nine months since I first came to work for East Penn Publishing, now the Lehigh Valley Press weekly newspapers.
In a short time, I will step into a life of retirement — a season of my life which I hope will also last a long time.
In anticipation of that final day in the office, I’ve been cleaning out my desk, one file at a time, and I have come across a lot of memories.
Property taxes continue to be a top concern and an overwhelming burden for many Pennsylvania homeowners.
This onerous tax has jeopardized the American dream of homeownership for countless individuals, especially our seniors who may have paid off their home, but can no longer afford to keep it due to high property taxes.
In the latest effort to address this issue, the state legislature has passed legislation that will allow for a referendum on property tax reform to appear on the ballot during the November general election.
All I ever see each day is paperwork which comes my way.
Doctor bills and dentists, too, and special deals prepared for you.
Master Card and Visa Card are waiting to be paid;
This stack of papers over here is waiting to be read.
A form for this, a form for that, sign here and here and here.
It’s good that we can write our name, ’cause there’s forms everywhere!
Must write some checks to pay some bills, and write some letters, too.
I can’t forget to write some cards, your birthday’s coming due.
Knowing I live in downtown Allentown, people have been asking my opinion lately on the fate of the city that is the subject of so much publicity.
As a resident here for more than 50 years, after growing up in the Fogelsville area, I have experienced firsthand the rebirth of the downtown.
It looks great. It feels vibrant. Good stuff is happening here.
Sure I miss Hess’s and all the wonderful downtown stores, and I always will. Thankfully I have my sweet memories because those splendid businesses never are coming back to town.
The backpack, tags still on, and shopping bag full of folders, pencils and other supplies, are on the dining room table — next to the list of what’s left to buy.
My McIntosh-scented candle sits idle, yet ready to signal the start of another school year.
Happenings like these may be a part of your household, too — signs we need not only tradition, but also structure, in our families.
Children will head back to classes in the next week or so, a reminder to us parents of the importance of structure, organization and time management.
In the spirit of Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist and science communicator, from New York City, N.Y., here is a list of favorite songs about celestial events.
They are in no particular order of preference, however, No. 11 was a favorite while preparing this week’s piece about the solar eclipse.
1. “Heavenly,” by Harry Connick Jr.
2. “Walking on the Moon,” by The Police
3. “Stardust,” performed by Nat King Cole
4. “Fly Me to the Moon,” performed by Frank Sinatra
5. “How High the Moon,” performed by Ella Fitzgerald
Mark Twain fans may recall how a total eclipse helps protagonist Hank Morgan escape death and impress royalty and the magician Merlin when Morgan time travels to sixth century England after a blow to the head in Twain’s novel “A Connecticut Yankee in King’s Arthur’s Court.”
On Aug. 21, a total solar eclipse, visible along a path over the continental United States, inspired scientists, baffled wildlife and dazzled star gazers with its celestial show.