Wellness in Words

Yoga teacher and certified holistic nutritionist Mandy Butera left an executive career of 20+ years in the traditional cosmetic world to bring a better vision of healthy beauty to the community. Wren and Wild is a collection of natural skincare, cosmetics and "magical elixirs."  WrenandWild.com

Bees, Please

 Article Donna Burklo  Hug a Bee  You may not love bees. You aren’t alone. The potential for a sting and the incessant buzzing-all-about are sure detriments to any relationship that otherwise might bloom.

Be Nice!

 The bumper sticker commands, ‘Be Nice, You’re in Bend.’  Let’s face it, though. It really is very important to be nice when you’re in Bend—or Central Oregon in general. Because we’re basically on an island of sorts, especially in winter. If you think about it, we’re surrounded on three sides by desert and on the fourth by a towering mountain…

How to Make a Ribbon Wreath

This is a great way to repurpose ribbons from past Christmases, making an elegant decoration for your holiday celebration. Coordinate colors with your Christmas theme or with your home’s interior design to create a festive and stylish seasonal design. Have fun and be creative!

Elf’n PJ’s

It’s Christmas Eve. My six-year-old self is sprawled out on the living room floor, staring up at the kaleidoscope of colors that make up our Christmas tree. My German Shepherd wags her tail as I rest my head on her, closing my eyes as I giddily imagine what lies underneath the ribbons and wrapping paper…

Scruffy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving can be a high expectations holiday. Family time-allotment and travel planning begins in July. A veritable arm-wrestling contest of “who’s turn is it” ensues. Pinterest overflows with crafty ways to decorate all house corners with every scrap of anything available. Mix in the preconceived notions each individual has of the “perfect” Thanksgiving and it’s a recipe for a complete…

Entrepreneurial Tips from James Gentes

Bend’s James Gentes has intimate knowledge of starting and growing a business. His resume includes a stint as chairman of the nonprofit Tech Alliance of Central Oregon, organizer of the co-working facility BendTech, and former mentor and alumni of the FoundersPad business accelerator program.

Bicycle Touring

I am a cyclist. That very fact has been ingrained in my soul since I first put my six-year-old feet to the pedals of my Schwinn Scrambler and darted off to school. It became all but solidified when my parents first took me to the BMX track. When I was 14-years-old, a cycling group rode past the park just as…

Hanging High

Driving along Highway 97 from Bend to Redmond, it’s almost impossible to miss the colorful shoe tree on the east side of the road. The barely-alive juniper stands tall with dozens of shoes of all shapes, sizes and colors adorning the branches for onlookers admiring in wonderment.

The Lightbulb Just Went Off—in Belize

My husband Michael has been rowing a drift boat down Oregon rivers as a fly-fishing guide for over two decades. He’s memorized every rock, eddy and bend in the waters that he considers his other “homes.” He has taught scores of people how to fly-fish and introduced veterans to the secret holding waters on the McKenzie, Deschutes and Rogue rivers.

Art & Music in Our Town

My wife and I moved to Bend in 2001. Our goal was to start a family in a small town, away from the problems—crime, home prices, traffic—of big-city living. We smiled at the amount of new families who flocked to Drake Park for events, enjoyed out first home on half an acre, and marveled at the fact we could get…

Hops in the Kitchen

Stout Chocolate Brownies

The Benefits of Honey

Honey is great for your skin! Did you know that raw organic honey is great for your skin too? Honey has natural antibacterial properties, so it is an effective acne treatment option, and it is loaded with antioxidants and enzymes, so it helps boost your skin’s immunity and fights free radicals to help slow down aging.

Confessions of a Non-skier in a Ski Town . . .

I live in a mountain town called Bend. In the winter, snow blankets our streets and turns our Cascade Mountains into majestic photo opportunities. People flock to our town to enjoy the slopes of Mount Bachelor or the wilderness backcountry terrain. At night, conversations center on the day’s escapades or the promise of tomorrow’s adventures.

Holiday Wish Lists for Local Nonprofits

The holidays are just around the corner. While many of us have been counting down the days with glee, others wish they could just ignore the whole thing. We have neighbors and friends here in Bend who are living with chronic disease, food insecurity, homelessness, loneliness, and sometimes just really difficult holiday memories. Reaching out to others with any kind…

Traveling With Pets

Many of us have furry friends who are considered members of the family. Canine companions and feline buddies alike fill our lives with joy and laughter in the home, the great outdoors and even on trips. While it may seem daunting at first, traveling with one’s dog or cat can be accomplished with a little foresight and preparation.

More Than Just Books

I have always been a fan of libraries. The public library was where the junior high version of myself went to read dark, macabre stories about murder and torrid love affairs, at a time when most of my peers were reading Judy Blume novels.

Little Free 

Any given day, people walk to catch a bit of exercise before work, stroll down to the nearest watering hole for a glass of wine, or simply to enjoy the views. Luckily, in a handful of Central Oregon neighborhoods, there’s a new reason to take to the streets. Little Free Libraries have begun popping up, each offering locals a chance…


One of my dear friends is a painter who sees the world through her amazing artist eyes. When she was the newbie in our neighborhood, her heart was sensitive to how to integrate her family into the community. Driving one day she noticed how birds perched on a telephone wire seemed to choose when to gather, and who to pause…