This Old Newspaper?!

Hey you! Yes…YOU. Is this newspaper headed for the recycling bin once you have finished reading it with your morning cup of coffee? Chances are you have answered ‘yes’, totally unaware that these folded sheets of community news are useful beyond your leisurely reading. This paper is a surprisingly versatile material that has the potential to be repurposed into something amazing. Clothing, art, furniture – the possibilities are endless.

The Orono Weekly Times and the Ontario Community Newspapers Association (OCNA) TRIPLE-DOG-DARE YOU to participate in the “This Old Newspaper?!” Reader Contest and recycle leftover newspaper into something new. Are you up for the challenge? Put your creativity hat on and enter for your chance to win the OCNA provincial price of $1,000.

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Tending to your inner child

It’s been 18 weeks now since the world has turned upside down. As the days and weeks pass, and as they all seem to blur together, we are seeing more of our world open. Slowly we are getting back to some normality.

A few weeks ago, I saw a picture posted on Instagram. It was of the author’s younger self that radiated joy. The caption read, “Remember her? She is still there inside you… go get her.”

It was fun reading the responses from people reminiscing about their fun, loving childhood that they felt was long gone. I had to do some digging…but I found a picture. My brother is in it – I’m about seven he is about four. It is Christmas time at my grandparent’s house. We had our own table…remember the kiddie table? There was so much joy in that picture. Which led to more joy in the form of memories – remembering the Christmases of years gone by.

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Cluck cluck

There is a petition on change.org to allow backyard chicken keeping in Clarington. As of Tuesday’s deadline, 372 have signed – the goal is 500. The petition is directed to members of council and Premier Ford.

The backyard chicken controversy isn’t new to Clarington. On November 23, 2009 council considered a request to amend the Exotic Pet By-law, By-law 93-161 to permit the keeping of chickens in urban areas within the municipality. Council referred the correspondence to the municipal clerk, the director of planning and the Agricultural Advisory Committee of Clarington for comment.

It was then debated at the March 29, 2010 General Purpose and Administration Committee meeting, Report CLD- 004-10 – Urban “Backyard” Chicken Farming. The report recommended that the request to amend the by-law 93-161 to allow for raising chickens on non-agriculturally zoned lands be denied.

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Look twice before you lock

Your car beeps if you leave a door open. It beeps if you try to lock it with the keys in the car. Why has it taken so long to beep if you have left something – or more importantly someone, in the back seat?

On Friday, June 26, 2020, a 40-year-old woman was charged with failing to provide the necessities of life after a one-month old baby was left in a hot vehicle at a plaza parking lot on Innisfil Beach Road, Innisfil Ontario around 12:50 p.m. According to Environment Canada, the outside temperature at the time was 25 C.

There is no excuse or justification for this – including COVID-19. An actual question posed to an expert – ‘I’m a single parent and I know under normal circumstances it is never OK to leave your child alone in a car. But I was wondering, now with the threat of coronavirus, is it ok for my child to wait in the car while I run into the pharmacy or grocery store to pick up a few things?’

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The ‘new normal’ is here for awhile

People wait patiently outside a business in long, spaced out, lineups. Direction arrows show customers where to move next. We have mastered physical distancing. Checkout lines seem longer than usual. Cashiers carefully disinfect their terminals before the next customer arrives. Whether we like it or not, physical distancing, masks and hand sanitizing is our new way of life if we are to stay safe.

As we navigate through Stage 2 – and hopefully before the summer is over enter Stage 3, we need to focus on how schools will reopen in September. Getting our kids back to their ‘new normal’ is paramount. By September Ontario children will have been out of class for six months. Not being in school has a devastating social, emotional and mental health impact on our kids. It is important to have a cautious restart – same as ‘opening’ the province or we will be back where we were in March.

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