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This column reflects the opinion of the writer. Learn about the differences between a news story and an opinion column.

Opinion >  Column

Huckleberries: Kids’ family size grows when the question is ‘cookies?’

So two neighborhood kids showed up at the front door of Casa Oliveria recently, asking if they could plow the driveway for money. They were about 7 and 5 years old. A brother and a sister. Their snow shovel was bigger than they were. The chances that they could handle the snow load on the driveway were slim and none. Mrs. O declined their offer, giving each a fresh-baked cookie instead. Then, Mrs. O offered to give the children a cookie for each member of their family. Their nuclear family has four people in it – Dad, Mom and the two kids. The little girl, eyes fixed on the giant chocolate kiss in the center of the cookie that she’d received, responded: “We have 29 in our family.” I’m glad Mrs O didn’t fall for that fib. Or I would have been without a cookie when I got home later in the day.

Three cheers for winter?

We interrupt our regular programming for a public service announcement about winter. Many, including the old-timers, are fed up with the 2016-17 version. But Jeanne Helstrom of Coeur d’Alene can’t think of a place she’d rather be during the winter than her hometown. She said on Facebook: “We have had snow in abundance, which will be good for the summer forests, and a few nice clear sunny days, followed by pink then bright orange and yellow sunsets. And this week the full moon has been absolutely brilliant, causing shadows on the alabaster snow cover.” Those who don’t share Jeanne’s love for winter should take heart. In two weeks, the groundhog might call the whole thing off – and we can start thinking about our gardens.


In the “You can take the boy out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the boy” department, Jimmy McAndrew, of Coeur d’Alene, was celebrating an early birthday present from his wife. A subscription to the weekly St. Maries Gazette Record. Before Jimmy moved to Coeur d’Alene to seek his fortune as a banker, he was a St. Maries Lumberjack. Seems he still is … Jim Pierce, of Coeur d’Alene, decided to hit Schweitzer Mountain recently instead of cross-country ski, per usual, because, well, he was “feeling old.” The remedy worked … Paul Amador, the new Coeur d’Alene representative, didn’t know his name sounded like “Homadore” or that his white car looks gray to others until he saw his valet ticket from the Shore Lodge in McCall, where he and wife, Julie, recently celebrated their 12th anniversary. Surmises Paul: “I need to wash my car more often” … Quotable Quote: “Football seasons are like relationships. Most of them end in heartbreak, but you pick yourself up and keep trying. And if at least one ends magically, you’ve won forever” – Bill Will, a former Priest River resident who now lives in Olympia. Words for Seattle Seahawks fans to live by.

Parting Shot

Dunno how your Monday morning started. But the morning launch this week by Bonner County teacher Rick Price is hard to beat. Rick saw eight bald eagles while crossing Long Bridge in Sandpoint.” Says Rick on Facebook: “Nice way to start a day.” And that’s why we live in North Idaho.

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