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Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023
Good morning to you!

“A place for everything, and everything in its place.”

You have likely heard this famous quote that has been associated with Samuel Smiles, Isabella Beeton and Benjamin Franklin, among others.

You may live by it, or you may despise it. I am learning there are very few people who don’t fit in one of those extreme camps or the other, but how each person defines his or her organizational skills is fascinating, at least to me.

Ask people if they are organized or not, and most will say yes — while their family members or co-workers roll their eyes.

David Belin was the senior partner in the Belin Law Firm in Des Moines and had many accolades, most notably being an attorney for the Warren Commission and the Rockefeller Commission. He was also a partner in our publishing company a few decades ago. I met him in his office in the late 1990s, and I was immediately distracted by the multiple knee-high stacks of papers he had on the floor around his desk. He looked at me and said, “I have something for you,” and he pulled a piece of paper out of the middle of one of those stacks like a magician pulling a tablecloth out from under settings of dinnerware. I was amazed.

My brain doesn’t work that way. I am more Benjamin Franklin than David Belin.

Jolene and I are in the process of moving to another home and are living out of boxes and between two places. Locating socks, silverware and screwdrivers has been a bit of a struggle, and it has me out of sorts. It will all come together soon enough, but the transition is troubling, at least for me. Jolene handles it all much better, as she does with most things. The obsessive-compulsive traits I inherited from my mother tend to rear their ugly head in times like this.

My temporary solution was to spend a few hours in my new garage, putting tools away, letting my brain unwind and giving Jolene a break from me. It worked, for a while.

Moving is never easy, and, yes, there is a mental price to pay in wanting to be organized. Even so, I am convinced there is still a place for everything, and everything in its place.

How about you? What are your personal tricks for staying organized? Send me a note and let me know.

Have a wonderful Wednesday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman
President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

View Shane Goodman's archived columns from past issues here.

CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines®

CITYVIEW announced its 2023 Best Of Des Moines® readers' choices Jan. 31. You can find all the results from the poll in the February issue of CITYVIEW magazine!

Best local museum

1. Des Moines Art Center

2. Science Center of Iowa

3. State Historical Museum of Iowa


Read More

Your Clear Mortgage forecast

A few late-day showers/storms are possible north of I-80 again today. Otherwise, it'll feel like summer again as we head into October!

For help with preapprovals or refinancing, get in touch with Carrie at carrie.mortgage.

Featured home for sale
Attention Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.
4222 Northwest Drive
Des Moines, IA 50310
Stop by and check out this wonderful 3 bedroom home in the heart of Beaverdale. Northwest Drive is a beautiful street, and the house backs to the prairie area which is teaming with wildlife. Inside you will find a beautiful living room with fireplace, refinished oak floors, built in bookshelves, and a bay window.
See More Homes For Sale

The five largest cacao producers and exporters are all nations in western West Africa. All are ahead of Brazil where great novels and record-setting telenovelas are written about cacao plantations. The most expensive cacao, however, comes from Ecuador.

In the new Smithsonian magazine, Heide Brandes reports that the most coveted and expensive cacao in history has been rediscovered and revived in the highest mountains of coastal Ecuador. Believed to be extinct for the last 20 years, Nacional cacao is being grafted and replanted, and there are high hopes that it will reforest a highland region that has lost 98% of its trees in a century. It's producing chocolate that fetches as much as $475 for a single bar.

Chocolaterie Stam, with four Central Iowa venues, is celebrating their 110th anniversary... Django (1420 Locust St., Des Moines) makes their pot de creme with an amazing dark Belgian chocolate... Alba's (524 E. 6th St., Des Moines) molten chocolate lava cake is both their most expensive and most popular dessert... El Fogon (1250 8th St., West Des Moines) makes a poblano mole with the legendary Nahuatl molli sauce. It is probably the world's most famous savory chocolate dish. This one is with chicken.

Waterfront's special today is red snapper.

— Jim Duncan, jd91446@aol.com


The power of the pipe organ
Koskamp to mark 40 years as church organist

By Becky Kolosik

Imagine making music with your entire body, hands and feet. Mark Koskamp, the organist at Trinity United Presbyterian Church says that, once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty amazing.
Koskamp began taking piano lessons in first grade and started playing organ for his church in sixth grade. At the time, the church organist gave lessons to promising young piano students and, by middle school, several were taking turns playing on Sundays.

The biggest difference between the piano and organ is playing melodic lines with both feet on the pedalboard while also playing with both hands on the keyboards.

“Most organists begin as piano students until they gain some proficiency,” explains Koskamp. “Then they add their feet into the mix without having to worry so much about what their hands are doing. However, it still takes a lot of practice and coordination to get comfortable playing with your hands and feet at the same time.”

Read the rest of the story in the latest issue of Indianola Living magazine.


FROM KCCI: Chemicals in the water? EPA says they're recommending a clean-up in Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa —The Environmental Protection Agency is seeking feedback from people in Des Moines to help decide if they will clean up a dangerous chemical in the groundwater..... READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: ARL overwhelmed with nearly 100 dogs rescued from Boone County

DES MOINES, IOWA — The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is looking for homes for dozens of dogs and puppies as well as donations to help care for them after being rescued from a licensed breeder that is being described as a puppy mill in Boone County. ... READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: Officials identify suspect who fired at deputy and hid inside hotel

Officials identified 42-year-old Scott Eugene Smith of Des Moines as the suspect who shot at a deputy and barricaded himself inside a hotel.. ...READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

Birthdays and notables!

These celebrities were born on this date: Avril Lavigne, Gwyneth Paltrow, Anna Camp, Lil Wayne, Marc Maron, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, A Martinez, Kate Mara, Jenna Fischer

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to: tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Morning chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:
How can you catch a drummer? USE A SNARE! - John Zeitler, Anne Schnurr, Gail Tomlinson, S. Hill Watkins. Or, Follow his beat! - Kris Laurson. Or Offer him/her the drumsticks at Thanksgiving dinner...then snare them! - Deb Taylor. Or,  With "stop" sticks! - Carolyn Rogers

Today's riddle

What does an orchestra need to play electrifying music?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com


To advertise in this daily newsletter, contact Jolene Goodman at jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com, or call 515-953-4822 ext. 319.

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