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Coastal Voices: Crucial partnership between state, tribe

As the holidays near, many Americans start planning how and where they will travel to meet up with family all around the U.S.  It is a foreign concept to me.

As an indigenous person, I cannot separate myself and my family from the lifeline of our redwood forests, the Pacific Ocean and the Smith River; we are from and of the land and waters of Northern California. I am a part of the Tolowa Dee-ni’, of the Smith River Rancheria. We have fished and gathered and lived among the redwoods and on the shores of the Pacific since our genesis, and our stewardship of ocean resources like seals, salmon and seaweed resulted in the abundance Europeans found when they came to our land.


Artisan Cuisine: Candied citrus peels a nice holiday treat

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Candied citrus peels can be chopped up and added to cookies or dipped into chocoloate and given as a holiday gift. Photo courtesy of Ann Boulley
Artisan Cuisine is published monthly.

I love taking something normally thrown away like orange peels and turning it into a gourmet treat.

Yeah, instead of the compost bin, you can keep those citrus peels and make them candied and dipped in chocolate. Or, they can be added to holiday cookies for an extra zesty punch of flavor. 


House Calls: Flying out patients common

House Calls runs monthly. Today’s column is written by Wayne Bunn, a case manager at Sutter Coast Hospital.

There is so much talk in the community and through the media about the concerns of patients being transferred out of Sutter Coast Hospital.

This is not a new concern for our hospital. We regularly transport patients out of the area for specialty services or higher level of acuity needs. We also transfer patients for services that can be provided locally because not all medical specialty services have 24-hour call coverage.


Church Notebook: Plenty of local holiday services are coming soon

It’s almost Christmas.

So often, the real reason for Christmas is overlooked  as we go about our myriad chores getting ready for it. I think you all know by now that I like to use plants, pets, family situations — anything we encounter to highlight the importance of faith when I write this.

Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Christ, a miracle of birth.


Church Notebook: Complete Grace Lutheran holiday services scheduled

Times have changed!

In the early days of my nursing career, I was reprimanded more than once for making my patients laugh!

It seemed to me that some cheer would help folks who were in the hospital — but some of my supervisors did not agree.

Tuesday, I had my right hip replaced at Three Rivers Hospital in Grants Pass. I came home Thursday, a much shorter stay than that procedure used to take.


California Focus: California kids holding own in math, science

Maybe it’s time to stop the steady stream of handwringing over how poorly America’s schoolkids, and California’s in particular, perform in subjects like math and science and realize they are actually doing OK, even if there’s still plenty of room for improvement.

That’s the takeaway from 2011 test scores in the Trends in International Math and Science Study (TIMS), an exam given by some states and 46 other countries and provinces. The 2011 results, latest available, were released this fall.


Coastal Voices: Federal government is looking to own you

What if there was a simple non-invasive test that would show whether you had a propensity to get certain cancers or heart disease or kidney failure or were prone to get diabetes or Alzheimer’s disease sometime in the future and it only cost $99.

Would you order it?  This seems to be in the realm of science fiction, but actually is available today with current technology.

According to Wikipedia, 23andme Inc. has been marketing a simple test that uses a swab of the inside of the cheek and then runs the results through genetic testing to find out what your own genes reveal about you.  Using the results, a woman can find out her probability of getting breast cancer or a male can find out the chances of getting testicular cancer many years before the disease manifests itself.

In this way individuals, in consultation with a physician, can be proactive about their own health, modifying behaviors that can mitigate the chances of actually developing diseases. The term 23andme refers to the human DNA that consists of 23 pairs of chromosomes plus you, hence the name 23andme.

The company’s saliva-based, mail order test identifies over 240 genetic traits that offer clues to a person’s overall health. This test has been taken by hundreds of thousands of people. In addition to giving indications as to the probability of developing specific health issues in the future, it also gives the likelihood of negative drug reactions. Now a person can know in advance what the possibilities are that certain drugs will react negatively in the body.


California Focus: What if Jerry Brown decides he won't run?

There could be no better Christmas present for bunches of Democratic politicians than an announcement from Gov. Jerry Brown that he will not seek a second straight term in office, fourth of his lifetime.

Already the longest-serving governor in California history, Brown will be 76 if he stands for re-election next year and 77 barely three months into his fourth term, if re-elected. The question is, does he wants to?.

He’s hinted he does, of course, talking occasionally about his wish to see through the budgetary reforms he instituted after being elected in 2010 and a desire for a lasting legacy of leaving the California economy in good shape.


Coastal Voices: Board actions motivated by its survival instincts

As long-time members of this community our interest in Sutter Coast Hospital extends beyond our fiduciary responsibility as members of the Board of Directors. Preserving quality health care options for this rural region is critical to our well-being and that of our family, friends and neighbors.

On Thursday night, the Sutter Coast Board of Directors took thoughtful, decisive action designed to help ensure that Sutter Coast is financially viable and able to meet the health care needs of our community now and in the future. At the heart of this action is confirmation of Sutter Coast Hospital’s continued affiliation with Sutter Health as the best option to continue quality care for our community and retain our valued employees and physician foundation.


Church Notebook: Holiday activities pick up at various local churches

Was it ever cold!

I hadn’t gone to the window to look out Tuesday morning — I just noticed the sunshine streaming in and thought it would be a pretty nice day.

Until I stepped outside.

I was heading for my last pre-op stuff in Grants Pass, and had given no thought to any need for clearing frost from my truck windows.

And it turned out to be one hard frost to clear! (I stopped carrying a scraper ages ago!)

Grumbling to myself as I cleaned the stuff away with one of my grocery store cards so I could see to head out, I mumbled, “And I left New York to get away from this stuff!”


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