Behind Closed Doors

Heidi Clutter

"A place for everything and everything in its place." I love the concept of things being where they belong. At one point I thought I was actually good at this organizational philosophy, but the truth is I have my own adaptation of it that isn't quite so tidy. I have a style that leans more towards "A place for everything, and everything tossed haphazardly behind closed doors." And though it appears at first glance that I live in organized bliss, it's all a facade. Because I like our … [Read more...]

Former Rochester Hills resident offers seniors a way to live ‘Gracefully’

Graceful Living

In response to the growing demand for exceptional senior care, a new, innovative facility is on the verge of opening its doors in Howell, Michigan. "Graceful Living" is the fitting name of the new home, and also defines what sets this concept apart from typical elder care. The catalysts behind this new setting are two dedicated women, the joyful Grace Terry, and former Rochester Hills resident Laura Kwapis. They live with a passion for setting a new standard of a graceful, holistic, and … [Read more...]

What we do


I have an embarrassing admission, and it might gross you out. It may even change the way you look at me. Here it is: I don't ever brush my teeth in the morning… or the afternoon. I only brush them once a day, before bed. Call in the hygiene police and put on the handcuffs, because I am guilty of a voluntary brushing violation. I don't know if it's the craziness of the morning rush or the lingering over cups of coffee that hinders my dental routine. Or simply it's just that I've been … [Read more...]

Girls on the Run

Long Meadow Elementary Girls on the Run!

When it comes to the younger generations, the media often focuses on negative issues like obesity, violence, and substance abuse. But one group of girls in the Rochester area are making a difference in a beautifully positive way. Long Meadow Elementary has a team of 19 girls who participate in an organization called "Girls on the Run." Girls on the Run is a nonprofit for 8-13 year old girls, in which girls learn valuable tools to develop self-esteem, confidence in uniqueness, and how to … [Read more...]

Timber! Surviving life’s storms


Last Saturday evening, my family and I watched from our window as dark, ominous clouds rolled in. We anticipated lightning and thunder, drenching rain and hail. But all we were entertained by that night were some forcefully high winds. Blatant disrespecting the towering deciduous trees, the wind attacked for a short but potent time. The bare branches gave off the impression of vulnerability, as they threateningly waved over homes. We expected any one of them to snap under the pressure that … [Read more...]

There’s no place like home


Maybe it's just this wearisome winter or perhaps I'm growing soft with age, but I've been more emotional than an Olympic gold medalist lately. So when we recently rescued a shelter dog, speaking the words "You're home now," instantly choked me up. Call us suckers for sympathy, since the sad faces in the dog cages were all it took to convince us we could provide a good place for a homeless companion. The innocent looking tent at the Fire and Ice Festival was filled with furry friends that most … [Read more...]

Sew as you go

Sew as you go

About a year ago I was given the gift of a sewing machine. It was sleek, modern, and had pretty stitch designs already programmed in. It fashionably sat atop my desk and I loved it. The problem was I had no idea how to make it perform its magic. When I signed up for an introductory class, I arrived early, eager to learn. But the lesson was almost a disaster because the teacher assumed her students knew how to thread a bobbin and what a presser foot was. Unfortunately this pupil had not the … [Read more...]

Only the lonely

Elk Looking for Food in Snow

Last week was rough. I had been pushed to my sanity limit by a list of constant demands and overwhelming busyness that was out of my control. I found myself retreating to Facebook and Pinterest in short intervals, in an attempt to find respite in the swirl of chaos happening around me. I thought if I could connect somehow to the outside world then I would survive the day. But that prolonged testing of my patience caused a pang in me in a way I hadn't expected or noticed in awhile. I … [Read more...]

Eating for your immune system


There's vitamins, essential oils and prescriptions, oh my. When sickness strikes, we will try anything. Many of my friends have kids who are struggling to fight off stubborn infections this winter, and they just don't know what else to do. Though I don't claim to be an expert, one way our family stays healthy is by taking a proactive view of what we eat, and we do it in conscious thought of boosting our immune system. You can feel stuffed and satisfied in your belly and yet your body can be … [Read more...]