Some observations from past week

The past week produced today’s observations, including the fact that I’m not alone.

In this space last Sunday, I lamented to some degree that the name Janice isn’t too wildly popular – actually not popular at all, especially the Janice spelling with the “ice” ending as opposed to the “Janis” variety.

And that lament generated two consolation communications.

One was an e-mail from a fellow Janice who said she read the article and had to chuckle because, like yours truly, she, too, is an honest-to-God Janice.

She said she never liked her name but learned to live with it despite liking her sister’s name, Judy, better.

Oddly enough, this Janice has a penpal of 50-plus years who, believe it or not, is a Janis.

Now what are the odds of that, I ask you?

So it was good to hear from this Janice and good to hear from another Janice as well, this one with whom I had a brief phone conversation.

She just wanted to let me know that there really were other gals out there named Janice and that she was one of them.

But she told me, too – and I can relate here – that it’s not at all unusual to be called Janet instead.

I guess some people think that’s close enough or that Janice and Janet are synonyms or something.

She also told me she gets called Joyce, which struck me funny because I get called Joyce, too, the name of my cousin.

Go figure again.

Now that I know for sure that there are three whole people named Janice, I feel encouraged and know I have name support whenever I?feel I need it.


I realized something about myself in the grocery store this past week.

I think I can solve life in the baking aisle.

There I was scanning shelves and contemplating ingredients and mixes to buy all with one goal in mind – to fix stuff, duh.

But I also realize that I have the mindset that I can bake away the blues or correct some of life’s letdowns by turning the oven on and cranking out a batch of brownies or some chocolate chip muffins or a yellow cake with chocolate icing.

If nothing else, the baking makes for one heck of a kitchen air freshener.


Buying red geraniums is tops on my weekend to-do list as tradition calls for them to be planted on my dad’s grave at Richmond Union Cemetery.

I know the Richmond American Legion Honored Seven Post 740 has placed a flag on his grave and the graves of other veterans there, and for that I thank them.

On this Memorial Day weekend, I also thank all veterans for their service.

(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at