"Losing AC ot humidity" by: Jessica Shepard

   After nearly four days full of rain off and on, the sunshine is more than welcome. 
   And while it’s true that it doesn’t rain all the time, the weathermen would have you thinking differently. 
   From Wednesday afternoon on, we’re looking at a double whammy of rainstorms.
   This includes thunder, lightning, gusts of wind and the fear of losing power. 
   We actually lost power here at the house last Saturday night. 
   Most unfortunately for me I was in the middle of fiddling around with the theme on my personal blog. 
   The absolute worst part was losing the air conditioning.
   Luckily it was well after midnight and we had the fans going all day. 
   Still, the moment everything stopped I was immediately aware of just how humid the house could get without circulation.

"Politics, economy, trends all require investor's attention" by: John Sample

   I am attempting to drag myself into the age of Info Tech as I am writing this column on my iPhone.  
   To prove how improbable this endeavor, I must admit that my phone is of the 4 version versus the 6.  
   I tend to find something I like and then stay with it until it finally fails. This sounds somewhat like the trading theory of buy and hold. 
   Trends are changing so quickly today that investors cannot afford to sleep on their investments.  
   Companies like Kodak become insignificant overnight. 
   Lazy investors are protected from themselves by purchasing ETFs that mirror indexes such as the S&P 500 indexes. 
   These indexes are updated with new stocks added and others eliminated. 

"When we ask God's help, we should let go, allow him to handle it" by: Rosario Resendez

   “Good morning, I will be taking care of all your problems today. Relax, God.”  
   I see this saying all over the place, on coffee mugs, on wall hangers, on Facebook.  
   Today, as I was sitting and eating dinner, I looked up and saw it again on one of the posters hanging on the wall.  
   The difference was this sign added one more sentence.  
   It read, “Good morning, I will be taking care of all your problems and troubles today. I do not need your help. Sincerely, God.” 
   The sentence about God not needing our help changed the whole saying for me.  
   How many times do I go to God about things that are going wrong in my life or the troubles that I’m going through and I then try to change things on my own? 
   It reminds me of another story that I read a while back.  
   It went something like this: I took all my problems to God for Him to figure out.  

"Turn to Jesus automatically instead of the last resort" by Betsy Monico

   I have had one of those days today where I have goofed up and just laughed at it! 
   At the moment, I am on my second recipe for muffins that I have to take to school tomorrow.  
   We are doing a “Muffins Monday,” to get our staff motivated for the first day of the STARR testing.  
   I forgot to buy my muffin mix after church and decided to make them from scratch. I began with a carrot muffin recipe.  
   I tasted the first one that came out of the oven and wondered if something had happened to my taste buds? 
   The mini muffin was cute and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, but tasted like a piece of cardboard. Epic fail No. 1. 
   The first Monico kid came through and grabbed one as usual. He simply asked me if I was taking them somewhere with a puzzled look on his face.  

"Learning to know one's self" by: Jessica Shepard

      Every once in a while, a word or phrase will inspire me or stick with me for days at a time.
   A good quote from someone or a book or movie will do in a pinch, too.
   If it’s really awesome, it sticks with me for months - maybe a year!
   The best stick around for years and quite possibly my whole life. The one I’ve held onto the longest is “Know thyself.”
   I can’t take credit for it, because it’s older than me. In fact, it’s older than anyone alive today.
   Its roots can be traced through Benjamin Franklin, William Shakespeare, Alexander Pope and Thomas Hobbs - even Psalms - and finally to ancient Greece.

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"There's always opinions for every side of a stock" by: John Sample

   Last week found the various indexes climbing back toward record highs in the face of continuing concerns over employment and slow growth. 
   It will be interesting to see if the run to equities will be sustained as earnings reports for the first quarter start this week. 
   I also am curious to see if oil prices maintain their value for West Texas Intermediate above $50 a barrel. It was not that long ago that many were forecasting prices below $30. As in all cases, there are opinions for every side of the equation.
   Last week also found a large conglomerate deciding that smaller was better. 

"Find blessings in bad days (weeks) by trusting God" by: Rosario Resendez

   Talk about having a bad week.  
   This past week for me was the mother of all bad weeks! 
   Monday, on the way back to Victoria, I was crossing an overpass beside an 18-wheeler.
   The tractor-trailer rig driver thought that maybe it was too close to the edge so he decided to move over to my side.  
   There was no shoulder on that overpass so there was nowhere that I could go.  
   I had to honk my horn several times so the big rig could realize to move over. I really felt like I saw my life flash before my eyes - I knew there was no way I would have survived that accident. 

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"Like pulling weeds, you have to grab sin by its roots" by: Betsey Monico

   I spent some much needed time in my flowerbeds this weekend.  
   It is a pretty big event because I only clean them out a few times a year. 
   I have a wonderful collection of perennials that just come right back and do their thing.  
   When the weeds around them disappear and they are mulched, the rose bushes and native Texas plants I have pop! 
   I had a few helpers come out to lend me a hand. I allow the kids to carry my pulled weeks out into the pasture and bring me back my clean bucket.  
   I also love it when they get my handheld twister tool out and put it to work.  
   My husband is a gadget man and thought I had to have it last summer.  
   I wondered if it would be a deal or dud. It falls into the “deal” category because it works like a small tiller.  

"There's another side to tax cuts" by: Mike Reddell

   I certainly don’t claim to understand what the Texas Legislature does or even our state government.
   But I sure do writhe at what comes out of Austin nowadays and so should other Matagorda County and Texas voters.
   Cutting taxes apparently is the primary goal of this legislative session and let me be clear that I believe addressing education, transportation and water needs should be the top priorities.

"Some old companies deserve new looks" By: John Sample

We closed out the first quarter last week and the various indexes ended just about where they began the year.  
   It was one of the first quarters in nearly three years not to be positive.  
   While we made several runs at setting new record highs, the bears won out pulling the indexes back. 
   The markets were closed Friday and it is probably a good thing as the labor reports were none too positive.  


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