Published February 15, 2017

METRO DETROIT — With studies showing that keeping your brain active prevents the onset of dementia, more and more people are looking to find ways to do just that.

The answer might be in your own neighborhood.

Aging populations have led to a proliferation of senior centers, with one in almost every community offering card groups, book clubs, knitting circles and more.

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Published February 8, 2017

METRO DETROIT — When Merissa Hudnall, of Ferndale, met her future husband for the first time, she already knew a lot about him. He liked Tom Hanks and the restaurant National Coney Island — and so did she. There wasn’t an awkward getting-to-know-you period. 

She met Jason Hudnall, originally of Clawson, on the online dating website OKCupid. She had been perusing the site for a few months before her beau reached out to her.

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Published February 1, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Once the vows have been said and the rice has been thrown, the excitement of a wedding day still isn’t over for the new bride and groom.

Opening gifts is a fun and useful way for newlyweds to start their new life together. But are all gifts created equal? Many couples say some presents have more presence in their daily lives than others.

Francesca Gonzalez, of Bloomfield Hills, said her favorite wedding gift was probably the homemade quilt she received from her neighbor. But the most useful?

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Published January 25, 2017

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — It’s a new year and a new administration. 

But will either of those have much of an impact on southeast Michigan’s economy in 2017? Experts say it’s too early to tell — but they’ve got some predictions.

During an annual economic forecast hosted by the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber of Commerce, investment strategist Daniel Haines, of Greenleaf Trust in Birmingham, discussed a mixed bag of outcomes that could be tied to the policies proposed by President-elect Donald Trump. 

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Published January 18, 2017

METRO DETROIT — With a mission to consider God’s will in what they do, educators at religious schools say they may be a great place for some children with special needs.

Meghan Evoy, principal of Our Lady of Sorrows School in Farmington Hills, said that every decision she and her staff make — big and small — is guided by their mission.

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Published January 11, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Eat a little less, move a little more. For the most part, many of our New Year’s resolutions look the same.

But do they look the way our doctors wished they did? After all, what good is making healthy changes if they’re not healthy in the eyes of a professional?

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Published December 21, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Have you ever wondered, after you scrounged your pockets for a few bucks and slipped it into that charity canister, where the money goes from there?

You’re not alone. 

While many people are happy to give back to those in need, particularly during the holiday season, it’s hard not to question whether your donation dollars are being used wisely.

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Published December 14, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Something warm, rich and sweet certainly sounds tantalizing, doesn’t it?

And no, we’re not talking about your date to the office holiday party. 

Hot chocolate is a cold-weather favorite for families around the world. And for every cup of sugary joy poured, there’s a different secret for creating the chocolatey treat.

In Clawson, Kahve House owner Ana Bureau has been brewing up holiday favorites like peppermint mocha lattes for weeks now.

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Published December 7, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Strap on your tap shoes and your jingle bells, because the holidays are back in Detroit, and there’s plenty of celebrating happening on the city’s finest stages.

Christmastime is one of the best times to get out and catch a show, according to William Wood, director of cultural affairs and community engagement for Macomb Community College. The school houses the Macomb Center for the Performing Arts, which is already in the middle of a packed holiday-themed schedule.

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Published December 7, 2016

GROSSE POINTE SHORES — Whether Mother Nature cooperates or not, the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House is determined to offer its guests a “Winter Wonderland” for the holidays.

From tours of the historic estate — decked in tasteful splendor — to the relatively new nighttime walks known as Winter Wonderland, there’s plenty of seasonal fun to enjoy.

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Published November 30, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Patrick Riley, of Madison Heights, is a recent graduate at 67 years old.

But his commencement ceremony didn’t involve a cap, a gown or a diploma. 

Instead, there was a fur-trimmed hat, shiny black boots and a scroll filled with names — some naughty, some nice.

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Published November 22, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Just as surely as holiday revelers can expect to see evergreen wreaths and sparkling strings of lights, they can count on being surrounded by a barrage of baked goods, made with love — and plenty of sugar.

Holiday treats — particularly Christmas cookies — are a tradition as old as the celebration itself. Whether you’re raiding  a stash of cookies left by the office coffee pot or toiling over an oven to bake gifts for family and friends, metro Detroiters are ready for a taste of the season.

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Published November 16, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Don’t be fooled by those warm temperatures and the sunshine we’ve enjoyed well into November. The holidays are sneaking up on us.

And if you’re ready to get into your Santa Claus gear and set out for some holiday shopping, there’s really only one place to start: the great independent stores right next door.

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Published November 9, 2016

STERLING HEIGHTS — The goal of the inaugural Hat Trick for Heroes to raise money for Michigan’s disabled vets.

Held in honor of Veterans Day, it’s also a win-win for those who also love standup comedy, classic cars and nostalgic hockey. 

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Published November 2, 2016

METRO DETROIT — With just a few days until the presidential election, many of us are ready to be done with what’s been referred to as the most contentious race in our nation’s history.

And plenty of others are just ready to drown out the hysteria with a strong cocktail. 

But looking back in history, it turns out this election isn’t all that different from other votes in the past — booze included.

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Published October 26, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Every morning at 6:30 a.m. during the week, a group of Warren senior citizens meets at the Fitzgerald High School indoor track in Warren.

Their mission is to stay as fit as possible and enjoy each other’s company.

They casually call themselves “The Fitz Walkers,” and they walk the indoor track for about an hour, warding off pounds, weight issues, health concerns and other ailments that can surface as people age. 

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Published October 19, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Nothing frightens some people more than wearing used clothing. 

But for metro Detroiters like Holly Evenson, 32, of Novi, retail clothing Halloween costume prices give her the chills — so she buys secondhand.

From giraffe baby costumes to toddler-sized fairy outfits, the mom of 2-year-old Natalie and 5-year-old Melanie learned early on that it’s smart to go secondhand.

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Published October 12, 2016

METRO DETROIT — Forget about what the kiddos are wearing this Halloween — trick-or-treating fashion is going to the dogs. And cats.

The pet supply industry is a big business, with more than $62 billion in annual spending. From food and treats to shampoos and even apparel, pet owners are throwing down big bucks on items that make their furry friend feel more like part of the family. 

And that, of course, includes holidays. 

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Published October 5, 2016

METRO DETROIT — From buying a car to getting that dream job, our credit scores play a larger role in our lives than we may think — or maybe want to admit.

The ratings that credit bureaus give us all to indicate our reliability in repaying our debts can decide how much we pay for financed purchases, whether we’re eligible for certain housing and so much more. But how we can build good credit seems more like a secret code that many customers have yet to crack.

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Published September 28, 2016

METRO DETROIT — It’s officially fall, and the campaigns for all things pumpkin spice and apple cinnamon are nearly as aggressive as the ongoing presidential election.

If you’ve been daydreaming about pecan pie, cider mill doughnuts and s’mores for weeks, you’re not alone. There are plenty of Michiganders who can’t wait to dive into the sugar-and-spice flavors of fall. But where there are treats there are calories, fat and shocking amounts of sugar.

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