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    Covering college costs


    High school seniors and returning college students should complete their federal student loan applications and begin applying for scholarships as soon as possible, according to recommendations from local student advisers.

    Ideally, students should begin filling out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) by mid-January, said Kristina Klemens, a financial aid counselor at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

    “We recommend doing it as early as possible, because some schools, especially private institutions, may have limited funds available to give out.”


Good posture, good health


Remember when your mother told you to stand up straight?

She was right: optimal posture is good for your health. Bad posture can lead to chronic pain and strain of the lower back, shoulders, hips and knees.

Correct posture is a whole-body event, according to Julie Soyka, physical therapist for Alliant Physical Therapy, Kenosha. “When you stand, you should have correct posture alignment top to bottom.” The formula is: alignment of the head, neck and spine with each other, the ears are over the shoulders and the shoulders are over the hips.


Ethnic diversity in the grocery aisle


Garam masala powder, whole cardamom pods, tamarind chutney, canned dolmades, Vietnamese fish sauce, quail eggs and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.

For Kenoshans, it wasn’t too long ago that procuring the ingredients to make an East Indian, Greek or Asian meal meant trips to more than one store, sometimes out of state.

As recently as 10 years ago, most local grocery store offerings of Asian ingredients were limited to soy sauce and crispy noodles; Mexican foods were defined by canned chili and corn chips. And there was a time when even canned Italian pear or plum tomatoes were hard to find at the grocery store.

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    Biker chic: Decor made from bicycle parts


    Bikes have become part of hipster culture. There are bicycle-themed dining, drinking and shopping establishments from Portland, Ore., to Brooklyn, N.Y., and dozens of bike-friendly burgs in between.

    While the rides themselves are often tricked out with colored tires, swanky seats and vintage baskets, there are also those who see more than the sum of two wheels, a frame and a seat. Designers and artists are creating furnishings and art that give bicycles a whole new way to roll down Cool Street.

    Some of the best:


    Spotlight on Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church


    Church name: Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church

    Location: 7104 39th Ave., Kenosha

    Affiliation: Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


    Curling, eh?


    RACINE — To the novice, curling may seem to be a strange cross between bowling and household chores. Do not be fooled.

    Curling is that game where players run around on the ice and sweep in front of their teammates’ sliding stone. The goal is to have yours closest to the center of the target.

    The sweeping does serve a purpose. It reduces friction in front of the stone, allowing it to travel further.


    Help preschoolers learn about reading with wordless books


    Before you rush to teach your child letters and words, have you ever thought about using a wordless book to help teach your preschooler how to read?

    Wordless books are a great way for a child to develop language skills by allowing them to talk about the pictures in the book. They also help children make the connection that pictures and illustrations can provide clues to the narrative in the story.  

    Writer/illustrator Mark Pett has written two touching and thought provoking wordless books, “The Boy and the Airplane,” and “The Girl and the Bicycle.”


    Rosemont tempts O’Hare travelers


    I am a fickle consumer when it comes to airline transportation and spend way too much time weighing fares and gateways. I favor no airline but repeatedly head to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport because of often-remarkable price differences compared with Wisconsin options.

    When a deep discount means spending a night in the area because of odd flight times, I typically book cheap lodging, hold my breath and get in and out fast. Now the rejuvenated village of Rosemont, Ill., tempts travelers to consider doing more and staying longer.

    New since 2011 is a high-end outlet mall and entertainment district within a walk or quick shuttle ride from numerous hotels. These venues are two miles from O’Hare, within view of runway takeoffs and landings.

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