Sister’s move prompts thoughts of Oz

helena_rodriguez@link.freedom.com “I think I’ll miss you most of all, Scarecrow.” Those are the words my mom said to my 5-year-old niece, Marissa, as she hugged her goodbye when my sister Julie moved her family to Odessa, Texas, in April. Since then, Mom has referred to Marissa as her little scarecrow and that got my daughter […]

Dedication comes full circle for local mother, daughter

By Casey Peacock: PNT Staff Writer Patrice Tompkins, spent 14 years of her life caring for her mother, who was ill, while battling her own medical problems. That dedication is something, she says many people put her down for and questioned why she would waste her life caring for her mother. “I love my mom. […]

Everything’s easier with Mom around

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor If somebody accused me of returning to Portales after nearly 30 years away because I was a momma’s boy, I’d probably have to agree with them. I could tell you coming back made good sense financially or that the opportunity to pursue journalism in my home town was just […]

Having positive attitude is essential

By Anita Doberman: Columnist When I speak, and often when I write, my husband “gracefully” watches our five children, ranging in age from 6 years to 5 months old. The kids’ ages make it difficult for anyone to baby-sit, let alone for a man, my husband, to handle them for long stretches of time. When […]

All’s fair when fighting anonymity

By Kevin Wilson: Freedom Newspapers Anonymity’s a conditional thing, I’ve come to find. When I’m running errands and nobody tells how good my columns, photos and news stories aren’t, anonymity’s a good thing. On the flip side, anonymity is a bad thing when it comes from my best friend’s parents. What follows is a true […]

Friends, family remember area woman fondly

By Helena Rodriguez: PNT Staff Writer When Keri Bechthold’s older sister, Kelly, needed a car, Keri freely handed the keys to her own vehicle over to her sibling rather than trading it in. When her mom’s best friend, Susan Chambliss, was home alone, Keri would go to her house and invite her to a movie. […]

Power of suggestion can can cause optical illusions

By Baxter Black: Humor Columnist Sammi is one of those children for which parents have great expectations but a healthy dose of apprehension. In other words, her self-confidence was bound to get her into trouble now and then. As a 13-year-old ranch kid, she could rope and ride, do the chores, cook, read, shoot, and […]

Children leaving can be bittersweet

By Joan Clayton: Religion Columnist The “empty nest” brings a myriad of emotions, including memories, tears and separation anxiety. When my empty nest occurred I happened to read an article about “letting go” of children. It emphasized the fact that now they are your best friends. I thought, what are they talking about? I’m their […]

Forgetfulness can be sign of brain overload

By Helena Rodriguez: Freedom Newspapers What kind of a child forgets their own parents’ wedding anniversary? A self-centered, ungrateful, spoiled brat, right? Or in my case, a normally organized and occasionally thoughtful daughter suffering from brain overload. Yes, I’m guilty as charged. Line me up before the firing squad. But I have a perfectly justifiable […]

Perfecting art of coffee drinking takes time

By Helena Rodriguez : Freedom Newspapers I’m a novice when it comes to the art of coffee drinking. As a somewhat new sipper of this perked beverage, I’m envious of the grace and skill my parents exhibit in drinking coffee. My first attempts to become a coffee drinker in my early 30s resulted in a […]

Clippers make a hairy situation

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor Their electric buzz brings back childhood nightmares I thought I had put behind me. The dreaded hair clippers were out again at mom’s house last weekend. Like an enlistee in the armed services, my niece’s newly acquired husband surrendered himself to the barber’s stool in the dining room. His […]

Weddings create memorable moments

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor Wedding bells were ringing last weekend within our extended family as my niece said her vows in the back yard of her grandmother’s home. As an uncle, I managed to get off by doing just a few favors and offering up a wedding gift. The hard work seemed to […]

Being Julio’s daughter is enough

By Helena Rodriguez: PNT Columnist Many people mistake me for my mom, but not many have said over the years that I resemble my dad. With that said though, most people do know me as “Julio’s daughter.” I’m proud to be Julio’s daughter, the daughter of a baker, the daughter of a “musico,” the daughter […]

Villanuevas evolved from stay-at-home to working women

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By Helena Rodriguez: PNT Staff Writer Motherhood has drastically changed over the past three generations. In the 1950s, Mela Villanueva was a housewife. Today, her daughter, Corrine Gonzales, is a working mom, and next year, her granddaughter, Rebekah, will attend college before marriage and motherhood. On Mother’s Day, this Portales family serves as a vivid […]

Good mothers are nurturing

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor I gained a greater appreciation for my mom and the upbringing she provided this week. It wasn’t from anything she did for me this week it came from an experience that showed me just how blessed I’ve been compared to some youngsters growing up today. I had the opportunity […]

I’m the mom my mom warned about

By Helena Rodriquez: Freedom Newspapers Sometimes it’s the little things about Mom: That annoying tone in her voice when she wants something. That wrong-size birthday gift. That “Someday when I’m no longer here” line, which gets old. But the worse part is I’ve found myself doing and saying all of the above “mom things” to […]

Funerals replacing reunions

By Helena Rodriquez Been to any good funerals lately? These days, funerals seem more like family reunions to me because that’s the only time my mom sees some of her relatives. She was so close to them as a child, but has since grown apart due to time and space. Seeing tios, tias, primos and […]

Spring fancy turns to baseball

By Karl Terry My earliest memories of playing baseball have to do with my cousins and my brother and I playing ball on Sunday afternoon in my grandparents’ front yard. We used a huge wooden bat and a great big mushy oversized softball, which could be bare-handed without doing too much damage to your fingers. […]

Teen driver’s permit changes everything

By Helena Rodriquez What kind of a sick, twisted, teenager would voluntarily go to school at 7 a.m. every morning? Now change the question. How far will a teen go to get a driver’s license? The things teens will do these days just to get behind the wheel of a car are interesting. My 15-year-old […]

Father knew how to fly

Bob Huber: Local Columnist Dad always used holidays and birthday celebrations as an excuse to climb into his cups. One time I even heard him give a toast, “Here’s to the groundhog, God bless him.”  Hardly a 24-hour period went by without Dad recognizing some festivity or other. Dad favored that condition until one winter’s […]