Daily Archive : Sunday May 14, 2017




    In this Monday, May 8, 2017 photo artist Richard Neal, of Centerville, Mass., left, talks about his multi-media constructions called "Jackie," center, and "Jack," right, at the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum in Hyannis, Mass. The art objects were created from household objects and construction materials removed during a recent renovation of John F. Kennedy's summer home. The items removed from the house were preserved and offered to Cape Cod artists who in turn fashioned them into artwork. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

    JFK home renovation castoffs are transformed into art

    What once were pieces of John F. Kennedy's home are now pieces of art

    FILE - In this Nov. 17, 2016, file photo, Dakota Access pipeline protesters form a circle as they demonstrate outside a Wells Fargo Bank branch in Bismarck, N.D. Opposition to the four-state Dakota Access oil pipeline has boosted efforts to persuade banks to stop supporting projects that might harm the environment or tread on indigenous rights. (Mike Mccleary/The Bismarck Tribune via AP, File)

    Oil pipeline opponents try going after the money

    Opposition to the Dakota Access oil pipeline has persuaded some banks to stop supporting projects that might harm the environment or tread on indigenous rights, but calling the divest movement a success might be a stretch

    In this Wednesday, May 10, 2017 photo, Ben Lieberman sits for a portrait at his home in Chappaqua, N.Y. After his 19-year-old son, Evan, was killed in a car crash in which the driver of the vehicle he was riding in was texting behind the wheel, Liberman has been working on a proposal that would allow police at accident scenes in New York to immediately examine drivers' cellphones with a device to determine if they'd been tapping, swiping or clicking. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

    New York eyes 'textalyzer' to combat distracted driving

    New York lawmakers are considering a Breathalyzer of sorts to combat distracted driving from texting

    FILE - In this May 4, 2017 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. A luxury Caribbean property Trump purchased four years ago is for sale, raising the possibility that a buyer could see it as a way to get on the president’s radar. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

    When politics invades your workplace

    Americans are talking about politics. This we knew.But while the traditional advice is to steer clear of politics at the office, more than half of American workers in a new survey by the American Psychological Association-54 percent-say they’re talking about it with their co-workers, an uptick since the thick of the campaign in September, when the number was 48 percent.About half have had post-election conversations with people who agree with them, a third with those who don’t, and 15 percent have gotten into political arguments at work, according to the survey of 1,311 part-time or full-time employees, conducted online by Harris Poll from Feb. 16 to March 18.The habit feeding this public clamor: Some 35 percent of workers report spending more time on news sites and social media to keep up with the latest political news.It’s difficult, and probably too early, to rigorously measure the impact these encounters might be having on productivity, but when asked how they were experiencing them, 40 percent of the survey’s respondents listed at least one negative outcome. That included lower productivity (14 percent), worsening work quality (13 percent), stress or tension (26 percent), increased workplace hostility (18 percent), and negative perceptions of co-workers (16 percent). A quarter have avoided co-workers altogether because of their political views.If productivity has declined, it wouldn’t be surprising, said Edward Yost, HR partner for the Society for Human Resource Management. “These are not two-minute conversations,” Yost said. “These are 20-, 30-minute, hourlong conversations when you’re truly trying to convert somebody to your standpoint.” If you’re having the conversation in a break room or another public place, you can pull in even more colleagues-and burn even more company time.It’s not only the time spent debating whether the government should guarantee health insurance or get involved in overseas conflicts. “We’re trying to work in more collaborative environments,” Yost said. “So often, people, even though they need some piece of information to complete a project, they’d rather pull their own teeth out than talk to people they don’t like.”The upside: About 30 percent of the study’s respondents reported feeling more connected to co-workers or seeing them more positively. “When people agree with each other, there is bonding around these conversations,” said David Ballard, assistant executive director for organizational excellence at the APA.While many companies might prefer that politics be left at the door, barring these conversations is a losing battle, Ballard said. “They are going to happen anyway,” he said. Better to spend the effort fostering a supportive work environment by modeling respectful behavior as managers and stepping in when an issue of intimidation, harassment, or bullying arises.“It’s not just about the election. It’s about the culture of the organization,” Ballard said. A culture of arguing will mean more arguing - about anything and everything. Employers can’t successfully dictate the topics employees can and cannot discuss, he said, but “leaders need to be clear about [what constitutes acceptable behavior], not just about politics but about how people treat each other.”There are legal implications, too. Certain conversations closely tied to politics, like paid leave and minimum wage, are legally protected, Yost said, so “a strict prohibition policy is likely not going to be compliant with those protections.” Still, he advises employees to avoid heated political conversations when possible, so as not to offend a co-worker or, even worse, a supervisor.

    What if slapping on a grin and a name badge and performing some small-talk soft-shoe to impress strangers is your idea of hell? Good news: Networking is more flexible and natural than you might think.

    Not a networking natural? Don’t sweat it

    I envy natural-born networkers: The sunny teens who know everyone within the first 48 hours of summer camp. The polished business majors smoothly chatting up professors. But what if you lack those skills? What if slapping on a grin and a name badge and performing some small-talk soft-shoe to impress strangers is your idea of hell? Good news: Networking is more flexible and natural than you might think.

    “Long-tail” side hustles — such as running a photography business — typically don’t provide any meaningful income at first and require a longer ramping-up period.

    Need to pay off debt? Find your side hustle

    Although cutting expenses is one way to free up cash to pay off student loans, you can only cut back so much. That’s why I recommend focusing on increasing income through side hustles. A side hustle is any way in which you make income beyond your 9-to-5. It can be anything from freelance writing to delivering pizzas to selling things on Etsy.

    Looking for a part-time job can help teenagers build the “soft skills” most likely to help youths succeed in the job market: communication, social skills, self-control, higher-order thinking and positive self-concept (self-awareness, not just self-esteem).

    Teenager’s job search can help build adult skills

    Looking for a part-time job can help teenagers build the “soft skills” most likely to help youths succeed in the job market: communication, social skills, self-control, higher-order thinking and positive self-concept (self-awareness, not just self-esteem).

    Does the boss who hands out extra work just before the weekend feel some kind of superiority?

    It turns out your mean boss is secretly miserable

    When we talk about someone being on a “power trip,” the idea behind it is the abuse they’re throwing around somehow makes them feel good. But a new study finds that in reality, a boss’ explosive behavior or habit of ridiculing subordinates in front of others actually makes them feel pretty awful, too.

    Some are calling it the “Silver Tsunami” — a massive shift in ownership of private companies as baby boomers, many of whom are small business owners, look to wind things down, play a little golf, move to Florida ... and exit their businesses.

    When baby boomers retire, what happens to their small businesses?

    Baby boomers are getting old. Many of them are small business owners and, over the next few years, are likely looking to wind things down, play a little golf, move to Florida, spend more time with the grandchildren ... and exit their businesses. Some are calling it the “Silver Tsunami” — a massive shift in ownership of private companies. That could be very good for the boomers. But it may not be so good for their employees.

    It’s important for employees who open or renew an FSA to review their pay stubs at the start of the year — and for employers to remind them to do so.

    The company messed up your FSA deductions. Who pays?

    Q: I just discovered that my employer failed to deduct my 2016 flexible spending account contributions from my paycheck. The employer had enrolled me, so I was still able to use the contributions (totaling $6,500 for the year) for medical and dependent-care expenses. Now they have asked me to pay back the $6,500. Does my employer have any liability in this situation?

    Identifying what you need in your work space when working from home is the next important step in making telework a success.

    Career Coach: Can working from home work for you?

    Whether working from home works for you depends on a few key elements. Your organization’s culture, the type of position you hold, the work space available to you, your schedule, and plan for career advancement will all determine what role telework should play in your overall plan for time management.

Life & Entertainment

    “Wonder Woman”

    Summer movies play it safe with sequels, prequels and remakes

    The summer movie season comes crammed with remakes, sequels, prequels, plus features based on TV shows, comic books, theme park attractions, and anything else promising a built-in audience to calm the nerves of jittery producers.

    The blue chair was originally $40; Holley Simmons had it reupholstered.

    Author fills her home with inexpensive decor

    Friends of mine would probably describe me as “crafty” and “creative.” But that’s just because they’re too polite to tell you the truth: I’m cheap.

    Moving furniture, using slipcovers or simply adding a vase of flowers can make a summer rental feel like home.

    Make a summer rental feel like home

    When staying in one place for more than a week at a time, many wonder how to make these summer vacation rentals feel more like home. Here are some tips to make your vacation rental seem like your own.

    The use of blackboard paint as a backsplash is not only economical, but adds a bit of whimsy to the kitchen.

    Sharp design skills critical to compact kitchen

    Designing your dream kitchen within budget or space confines is challenging. And when you must contend with both of these constraints at one time, sharp design skills become critical, and clever manipulation of affordable key features make the difference between a passable result and a stunning design.

    Charlie Hunnam stars in "King Arthur: Legend of the Sword."

    'King Arthur' flops, 'Guardians 2' still rules at box office

    The first major box office flop of the summer movie season has arrived. Studio estimates on Sunday say director Guy Ritchie's "King Arthur: Legend of the Sword" opened to a bleak $14.7 million, placing it behind box office leader "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" and "Snatched" at No. 2.

    FILE - In this Monday, Jan. 9, 2017, file photo, David Lynch attends the "Twin Peaks" panel at the Showtime portion of the 2017 Winter Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena, Calif. Lynch is this year's winner of the Edward MacDowell Medal in the Arts, a prize bestowed by the venerable MacDowell Colony for artists. MacDowell officials announced Sunday, May 14, that Lynch will receive the medal Aug. 13 at a public ceremony at the colony, based in Peterborough, N.H. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

    David Lynch to receive medal from MacDowell artist colony

    David Lynch is this year's winner of the Edward MacDowell Medal in the Arts, a prize bestowed by the venerable MacDowell Colony for artists


    NBC's schedule for fall TV season

    NBC's schedule for fall TV season

    Barry Manilow has canceled his performance scheduled for Wednesday at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont to rest sprained vocal chords. He’s expected to reschedule.

    Barry Manilow cancels Wednesday performance in Rosemont

    Barry Manilow’s performance scheduled for Wednesday at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont is being postponed, according to an announcement on the singer’s Facebook page.

    Tony Wiszowaty of Schaumburg jogs to the stage at the Daily Herald’s Fittest Loser Challenge finale.

    The story behind a Hail Mary Fittest Loser win

    How did a 69-year-old former Marine lose 13 pounds in one week to pull off a surprise victory in the 2017 Fittest Loser Challenge?

    See a special Mother’s Day screening of the film “Mamma Mia!” at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago. Pictured, Meryl Streep, at left, and Amanda Seyfried star in the film.

    Sunday picks: Catch ‘Mamma Mia!’ with mom

    Celebrate Mother’s Day with a special screening of the 2008 musical/romantic comedy film “Mamma Mia!” at the Music Box Theatre. More on this and other fun weekend events.

    With her new solo album, “Wrangled,” Angaleena Presley follows a wave of outlaw female artists in Nashville, including Nikki Lane, Margo Price and Sunny Sweeney who have built their own brands from the ground up and attracted a more diverse crowd of fans without the help of major label marketing budgets and country radio.

    Shunned by radio, women in Nashville embrace outlaw status

    With her new solo album, “Wrangled,” Angaleena Presley follows a wave of outlaw female artists in Nashville, including Nikki Lane, Margo Price and Sunny Sweeney who have built their own brands from the ground up.

    Fittest Loser writer Dave Gathman lost 17 pounds during the Fittest Loser Challenge.

    True confessions: What I did and didn’t do during Fittest Loser

    Writer Dave Gathman may not have conquered his preference for Mountain Dew during the 12 weeks of Fittest Loser; but, he did lose weight and build strength despite not sticking to the program exactly.

    Anna Maria Zito of Giacomo’s “Top Guns” is surprised when she was announced as the female winner of the At Work individual challenge winner during the finale of the Fittest Loser competition.

    Record-setting year for At Work Challenge

    More than 2,000 pounds were lost in this year’s Fittest Loser Challenge.

    Debra Winger and Tracy Letts turn a nearly wordless scene, sitting side-by-side on a couch drinking wine, into a funny, awkward, sad standout moment in “The Lovers.”

    ‘The Lovers’ makes the case for experience over youth

    To watch “The Lovers” is to be treated to some high-caliber performances by a couple of experienced pros. First, you’ve got Debra Winger. Then there’s Tracy Letts. The actors are so good that they turn a nearly wordless scene into a funny, awkward, sad standout moment.


    Plant perennials to create the ideal home garden
    Q. I’m very inexperienced to gardening and need to start at the beginning for my new house and yard. What is the difference between annuals and perennials?A. Great question and congratulations on your new home. The ideal home garden is most likely a mix of both perennials and annuals.Perennials are plants that survive our sometimes rough Chicago winters and grow back year after year to share their beauty. Generally, perennials will survive more than three years, some lasting much longer. When shopping for perennials, look for the plant’s hardiness zone. While many plants are labeled perennials, look for plants that thrive in Zone 5. Zone 5 perennials do best in our climate.Perennials can be planted from bulb or seed, although it is easiest to go to your local nursery and purchase perennials in the spring to plant for your summer enjoyment. Keep in mind that some perennials only bloom for a period of time, so it is a good idea to plant a variety of perennials that bloom at varying times throughout the growing season. Some common perennials that grow nicely in our area include black-eyed Susan, echinacea cone flower, roses, peonies, day lilies, bee balm, wild onion and hostas.Annuals, on the other hand, are plants that you have to replant every year. Most annuals grown in Zone 5 will be killed off by frost before they reach the end of their life cycle. I like to add annuals in bare spots in my garden among my perennials. They are bright and showy and with a little water, will do well throughout summer and into early fall. Some popular annuals include begonias, vinca, marigolds, zinnias and impatiens.My recommendation is to plant a varying assortment of perennials that bloom at different times throughout the growing season. These will oftentimes multiply, filling in your garden quite nicely. I also encourage you to add a splash of instant color to your garden in the form of annuals. What I love about adding annuals to my garden is that I can change up what type of annuals I plant each year to change the look of my garden. I should also mention annuals are great to put into containers to brighten your landscape. Whether you choose only perennials, only annuals or a combination of both, they are sure to add a little brightness to your new home garden. Happy planting! — Wendy ReinerQ. I am thinking of using floating row covers this year in my vegetable garden. Can you tell me more about them?A. Floating row covers are a great way to protect emerging or fully growing plants from the dangers of insects, frost, wind and animals. They can be laid over the plants without support, which gives the plants some of the advantages of a greenhouse without the expense and space required. You do want to anchor the covers with bricks or rocks or garden staples to ensure good coverage and to keep them from blowing away.Covers keep wind off the plants and soil so the soil stays warmer and holds moisture longer after a rain or irrigation than if the cover were not there. Covers keep plants warmer even if temperatures go down. Having a cover keeps flying insects off emerging seedlings so the plants have a better chance of not becoming larvae food. The only time you wouldn’t want to leave a cover over plants is when you are growing fruiting vegetables and the plants are flowering. Pollinators need access to those flowers.The most commonly used materials for covers are perforated polyethylene or spunbonded polyester or polypropylene. These types of covers allow water from rain or a hose to enter easily.A perforated polyethylene cover is not as good in preventing insects because it is perforated throughout with holes which are large enough to allow insects to enter under it. This type of cover still helps plants stay warm and keep soil moist so it is good for those purposes.

    Moving company associate Marilee Hepler talks with resident Wally Soderstrom at his new residence in Sheridan in Lake Bluff.

    Companies take the hassle out of address changes

    Moving companies have been trying to find ways to broaden their scope and diversify their services in order to give customers additional reasons to hire a professional mover instead of trying to make the move themselves.


    Several solutions suggested for flooded backyard

    Q. Our backyard is constantly wet. One landscaper recommended a dry well to remove the surface water. The other said French drains should solve the problem. The ground is made of clay. What would you suggest. We are talking about half an acre.


    Maria Rodriguez

    Motherhood great training ground for government leaders

    Guest Maria Rodriguez: On this Mother’s Day, give yourself a gift. Give yourself the permission to see yourself through a leadership lens.


    Removing the separation of church and state
    A Schaumburg letter to the editor: President Trump’s recent photo-op executive order blocking prosecution of political activity by religious organizations, while largely symbolic, as IRS prosecutions under the Johnson Amendment have been sparse, does possibly open an unintended door.


    Yes, we should take care of our most vulnerable
    A Prospect Heights letter to the editor: Joe Walsh said that Jimmy Kimmel’s sad story about his son doesn’t obligate him or anybody else to pay for somebody else’s health care.


    Planned Parenthood lowers costs for all of us
    A Lake Barrington letter to the editor: I am a recently retired health care executive and nurse who is so disappointed in the current administration and specifically our U.S. representative, Peter Roskam, for their continued attack on women.


    Moms should be remembered daily
    A Plainfield letter to the editor: When Mother’s Day comes around, I am reminded of my mom’s sacrifices, love, blessings and comfort. When I was young she supported me in all my educational and extra curricular pursuits. When I started college, her support extended to finishing my Master’s degree without fail.


    Work as team on high school pressure
    As an alumni of Naperville North High School and parent of three graduates, I’m very sensitive to helping create a positive change in light of recent events at NNHS.


    Madigan, Dems could learn from Trump
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: Say what you will about President Trump and the recent federal budget agreement to avert a government shutdown, the deal is in full spin mode right now by all the talking heads and politicians from both sides, but Madigan, Cullerton and other Illinois Democrats might actually learn something from President Trump.


    Yet another reason to leave this state
    An Elgin letter to the editor: Thank you Mr. Allen Drewes for your informative article May 4 about new possible taxes of 6.25 percent on home repair. This shows the total disdain Illinois politicians have for the people of Illinois.


    Today’s Opinion Page editorial cartoon
    Today’s Daily Herald Opinion page editorial cartoon


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