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British boy marvels at Kansas City’s kindness as he battles bone cancer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Nine-year-old Alexander Goodwin, a nature lover from England, considers the bone cancer inside him a parasite. He’s the unwilling host who can’t shake the organism by himself. After finishing chemotherapy this week at Children’s Mercy Hospital, he headed to the University of Kansas Hospital on Thursday to learn how doctors, and perhaps surgeons, here in America plan to attack it.

Social isolation may worsen breast cancer prospects

Patients with early breast cancer who are socially isolated have a higher risk of dying from their disease, a new study suggests. Women with fewer social ties – to friends, family, community and religious groups, as well as spouses or romantic partners – were 43 percent more likely to see their breast cancer return, 64 percent more likely to die from breast cancer and 69 percent more likely to die from any cause, according to a study recently published in the journal Cancer.

Now an active retiree, man’s heart diagnosis ultimately saves his live

Ned McNamara, center, leads a yoga class at the Spokane Valley YMCA. He also teaches at Touchmark and is very involved as a search and rescue volunteer. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)
Fit and trim, 69-year-old Ned McNamara is the epitome of active retiree — teaching yoga and fitness at the Spokane Valley YMCA and for ACT 2 classes. McNamara also stays busy as a Spokane County Search and Rescue volunteer, teaches rescue skills, and operates a home-based fitness business.

American Life in Poetry: That New

A while back we published a column in which I talked about my delight in the many names of kinds of apples, and mentioned Louise Bogan’s marvelous midcentury poem “The Crossed Apple.” Here’s yet another fine apple-name poem for my collection, by Susan Rothbard, who lives in New Jersey.

Ask the Builder: Diagonal bracing keeps walls from falling down

See that angled board nailed to the vertical wall studs? It’s a temporary diagonal wall brace used to stabilize the framing while the house is built. (Tim Carter)
DEAR TIM: Yesterday I stopped by my new house that’s under construction. I go there at the end of each day to take photos. I saw a strange board nailed across the wall studs that surely is a mistake. It ran diagonally from the bottom wall plate up the wall to one corner of the wall. I don’t see how the builder is going to install drywall over this. What’s it for, and is it important? I was tempted to remove it thinking that the carpenters made a mistake. Would you install this board as you build a new home? – Dan V., Austin, Texas DEAR DAN: I want to congratulate you on checking on the progress of your new home each day. That’s a smart idea. By doing this you can catch errors and omissions in the construction process. Taking photos, thousands of them, is also very smart. Even if you have no idea what you’re taking a photo of, do it nonetheless. These photos can be very handy down the road if someone needs to look at how your home was put together.

Family gift delivered upon burned bridge

Dear Carolyn: My husband and I just received a package that’s likely to be a Christmas gift from my brother and sister-in-law. They have been harshly critical of me over the past two years when I was doing the lion’s share of long-distance care for Mom. Very little assistance from them, but scathing insults and criticism. I don’t want their gift and don’t plan to send them one. Should I put it back in the mail marked “Return to sender”? I don’t really feel like pretending to be friendly. – Bridge Burned

New year is great time to plan for strong financial future

As you bustle about from place to place, catching up with loved ones, there’s one errand you can avoid – a visit to the Social Security office. Why take time out of your busy holiday schedule to visit an office when you can conduct most of your business online?

New superhero La Borinqueqa shows the power of Puerto Rican pride

After announcing his intentions to create an environmentally friendly Puerto Rican superhero as a part of this summer’s Puerto Rican Day Parade in New York, Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, with the collaborative efforts of several Puerto Rican artists, inkers, colorists and editors, introduced his flag-wearing heroine, La Borinqueqa, to comic-book fans Thursday.

Nostalgia in 2016, ranked: From ‘Stranger Things’ to ‘Fuller House’

Our culture has been obsessed with nostalgia for a while now, but it may have hit its peak in 2016, with a slew of remakes, reboots, revivals, sequels and homages. Which ones were the best? Nostalgia, at its core, is deeply personal – the reason it’s so powerful is that it reminds you of a meaningful time in your life. But a few of us at the Washington Post managed to agree enough to rank 10 nostalgia projects that really struck a chord with us this year.

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Weekend Wild Card — 7.22-23

Izzit just me, or are we having incredible summer evenings of late. The weather at the Riverstone summer concert was terrific Thursday evening. And it made an encore performance Friday ...

It’s almost here

Yes, the Wear Your Pajamas to the Grocery Store Weekend is almost upon us. Remember the three key rituals of the annual observance, which some in Spokane regard as a ...