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Wednesday, April 25, 2023
Good Wednesday Morning to You!

Candle light. Today, those two words may conjure images of a romantic setting or a prayer service or a birthday cake. But prior to the 1930s, candles were a necessity as they were one of only a few sources of light other than the moon and stars. Unfortunately, candles were also the cause of fires, destroying many wood structures. According to the National Fire Protection Association, even in modern years of 2015-2019, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 7,400 home structure fires that were started by candles each year. Yikes.

Today, with no practical need for candles, we continue to be fascinated by them. According to the National Candle Association, the U.S. retail sales of candle products are estimated at $3.14 billion annually.

Most every child remembers learning about candles. I recall my brother, Steve, showing me how he could run his finger slowly through the flame of a candle and not be burned. I thought he was Houdini. He wanted to show me how to do the same, but I was more interested in dipping my fingers in the melted wax. (If you are curious, more than 1 billion pounds of wax are used in producing candles sold each year in the U.S.)

Years later, this candle fascination caught up with Steve. Mom and dad were out one evening, and Steve was left in charge. So, he did what many 12-year-old boys would do and broke out matches. While lighting a stick candle, he tried to look at the bottom of it, and the flame touched his curly hair, igniting it immediately. He beat his head like a set of bongos, distinguishing the flames quickly and safely, but I will never forget that sight or the smell of his burning hair. I didn’t mess with candles for years after seeing that — at least not until I was married and owned our first home.

My wife likes candles. Mostly the scents, of which the National Candle Association says are more than 10,000. As such, she would occasionally light a candle in our home, at least until a contractor told us the soot problem we had on our walls was from candles. We didn't believe it, especially after learning that the flue from our hot water heater had become disconnected in the attic (a story for another column), but we did refrain from using candles… for a while.

Today, candles come in all shapes and sizes, from tapers, votives, pillars and tealights to container and jar candles, floating candles, liturgical candles, outdoor candles, novelty candles, utility candles and birthday candles. I think we have most of them tucked away in a cupboard in our home right now. Candles are also a popular gift, with 35% of candle sales occurring during the Christmas season.

So, if you feel inclined, give a candle as a gift, or light one in your home. Just keep them away from your curly locks.

Have a wonderful Wednesday, and thanks for reading.

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

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 Store (Overall)

1. Bike World

2. Suzy’s Kitchen and Gifts

3. Many Hands Thrift Market


Read More

Your Clear Mortgage forecast from Jason Parkin

A couple of warmer days are ahead with mild conditions across central Iowa, though breezes kick in Thursday into Friday. Rain chances move in late Friday into Saturday morning, along with windy conditions and cooler weather. We may also see a shower Sunday afternoon. The breezes persist into Monday. It appears we may finally see consistent warmth starting after May 4. No, really.

For help with preapprovals or refinancing, get in touch with Jason at parkin.mortgage

Featured Home For Sale
Attention Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact jolene@iowalivingmagazines.com for details.

3810 Amick Ave., Des Moines, IA 50310

Located on Beaverdale's favorite brick paved street, this beautiful updated home is on a wooded lot on nearly a 1/2 acre, backing up to Ashby Park! Amazing landscaping in front and back, your private backyard includes a composite deck, with hot tub, firepit, gazebo with storage underneath.

See More Homes For Sale

This is how the world's largest company responds to higher wage demands, A fully automated McDonald's, with no employees, has opened in Denver. Similar stores are coming to Fort Worth and Vegas soon.

The hottest new BBQ in Iowa and the hottest new road trip from Des Moines are the same. Whatcha Smoking in Luther (just off Highway 17 on Iowa Street) is packing Q fans in, mostly from Ames and metro Des Moines from the license plates. Wednesdays bring a brisket tips special to the menu.

Grinders are Wednesday specials at Hilltop (2820 Hubbell Ave.).

— Jim Duncan

On April 26 ...

1954: Polio Vaccine Trials. On April 26, 1954, the Salk polio vaccine field trials, involving 1.8 million children, begin at the Franklin Sherman Elementary School in McLean, Virginia. Children in the United States, Canada and Finland participated in the trials, which used for the first time the now-standard double-blind method, whereby neither the patient nor attending doctor knew if the inoculation was the vaccine or a placebo.

1986: Chernobyl. On April 26, 1986, the world’s worst nuclear power plant accident occurs at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in the Soviet Union. Thirty-two people died and dozens more suffered radiation burns in the opening days of the crisis, but only after Swedish authorities reported the fallout did Soviet authorities reluctantly admit that an accident had occurred.

1984: Reagan visits China. April 26, 1984, President Ronald Reagan arrives in China for a diplomatic meeting with Chinese President Li Xiannian. The trip marked the third time a U.S. president had traveled to China since President Richard Nixon’s historic trip in 1972 (Gerald Ford visited in 1975).

Read more at History.com.


FROM KCCI: 'It's just like losing a family member': Dog shot to death in Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa — A Des Moines man is accused of shooting and killing his neighbor's dog. Ryan Krietzinger, 46, was arrested by Des Moines police on Monday on one count of animal abuse. Police tell KCCI that earlier this month, Krietzinger shot the dog, an 11-pound Coton de Tulear, while it was on the deck in a Beaverdale backyard. The dog later died at a veterinary clinic...READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: Meet Patch, the 2023 Drake Relays’ Beautiful Bulldog

DES MOINES, Iowa – A new member of royalty was crowned Monday night at the Beautiful Bulldog Contest at Drake University. Patch, reigning from Johnston, won the title and will be the mascot of the Drake Relays for the next year....READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: IDR provides update on tax error issue: Roughly 1,000 Iowans impacted

While the IDR initially totaled those impacted at approximately 300, the final total is roughly 1,000 according to a department spokesperson. Iowa Dept. of Revenue says roughly 1,000 impacted by tax error issue ...READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5


Wrestling her way to the top

Gomez wins fifth straight Iowa AAU Girls State title.

By Darren Tromblay
Emerson Elementary fourth-grader Markee Gomez has had wrestling on her mind since she was just a tiny 4-year-old watching the sport with her dad, Vinny Gomez.

The sport so endeared her that she began asking her dad when she could get out on the mat herself. Finally, one Saturday, it was time.

And she’s never looked back.

This past season, Markee won her fifth straight Iowa AAU Girls State Championship Title, topping a 29-girl bracket with two pins, a major decision and a 6-0 victory in the championship match for the medal. 

... Read more in the April issue of Indianola  Living magazine.

Birthdays and Notables!

These celebrities were born on this date: Channing Tatum, Jet Li, Giancarlo Esposito, Kevin James, Jordana Brewster, Carol Burnett, Tom Welling, Stana Katic, Luke Bracey, Pablo Schreiber, Emily Wickersham, Jason Earles, Tionne Watkins

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

Morning Chuckle

The answer to yesterday's riddle:
Oops. Apparently I forgot to include the answer to: What’s the difference between spring rolls and summer rolls? SEASON-INGS! Also getting the answer was Sharon Sorensen

What do you call a traveling nun? A ROAMING (ROMAN) CATHOLIC - Rex Post, Gail Tomlinson, Rich Hoidahl

Today's Riddle

What kind of dog do ducks keep biting?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

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