December 11, 2019

Washington is # 1 in “Overall Best States Rankings”
WA. State Capitol, Olympia
Credit: Elaine Thompson, AP file

“Study finds what we already knew: Washington is the best state”

“Washington was ranked the best state overall in the country based on a study done by the U.S. News and World Report.”

“Washington is the best state. Washingtonians already knew this, of course, but it’s nice to be reassured.

“The ranking comes from a recent study by the U.S. News and World Report. The magazine analyzed each state and measured the outcomes for citizens using 71 different metrics. The metrics considered health care, education, fiscal stability, as well as a state’s roads, bridges, internet and other infrastructure, public safety, and opportunity for its residents.”

“The data supporting these rankings were “drawn from extensive and reliable governmental and private sources,” along with a national survey of what matters most to citizens around the country, according to the magazine,” by KING-5 TV News, Seattle.

Read more

December 10, 2019

Introducing 2020 County Commission District 1 candidate Rory Summerson
Rory Summerson
Courtesy: Vote
used with permission.

Rory Summerson is running in 2020 to serve as Thurston County Commissioner (D1).

  • Editor’s note: Last week, I had the distinct pleasure to meet and sit down in Yelm for an hour conversation with Rory, learn about his platform, background, and passion for public service. I was impressed with his command of the facts, the issues, and a clear vision for working on some challenging problems. I am pleased to introduce to Yelm Community Blog readers Rory Summerson for Thurston County Commission 2020 (D1).
  • Rory shared this for Yelm Blog readers: “I come from a rural community, and know the heart they have” [referencing SE Thurston communities]. “We have a lot of big challenges ahead, everything from the Houseless to traffic. We need to be doing everything we can to strengthen Thurston’s economy in the uncertain times ahead. Working together, we can!” 

From Elect Rory Summerson:

“Hello! I’m Rory Summerson and I’m running to serve as your Thurston County Commissioner (D1). 

“I love this county and its people, so I want to ensure we preserve our history and lands, while providing a sustainable future for our children.

“I believe we need a balanced discussion with all Thurston county citizens, especially those directly inheriting the impacts of our decisions. Together, we’ll work towards what matters most to our families: Good schools for our kids, roads and public transport that get us where we need to go, and a thriving local economy focusing on green jobs. 

“So, Join me & vote Rory! 

“Let’s create positive change in our community, together!”

#allofus #aharddayswork #unity #representation #voterory #volunteerhere

Read more from

Read more from Rory’s Facebook page.

District 1 map, which covers Tenino, parts of Rainier and Yelm’s Bald Hills.

December 10, 2019

Food Prosperity Potluck this Wednesday, 6-8pm,h_600,al_c,q_80,usm_0.66_1.00_0.01/fly1.webp

Read more

Click here to register for this event.

December 9, 2019

Rep. Denny Heck’s heartfelt interview on NBC’s Meet the Press –
No wonder he is resigning, there is no bipartisan agreement on facts –
Even Attorney General Barr contradicted his DOJ’s Inspector General report!*QMJZij70urlwz9KaEj8fiw.jpeg
Rep. Denny Heck
Credit: Denny Heck

“I have fought the good fight”

“Rep. Denny Heck (D-Wash.) discusses his retirement and the impeachment inquiry with Chuck Todd,” by NBC News.

Editor’s note: I am deeply moved by the quality and caliber of a representative we have in Denny Heck. What a moving testimonial to truth!

Click here for the full interview.

“Contradicting Trump, DOJ report finds Russia probe was justified”

“The DOJ Inspector General’s report rebuts President Donald Trump’s depiction of the investigation of his campaign as a politically biased plot against him. The report concluded the FBI and DOJ were justified in launching their probe because of evidence the Russian government was trying to infiltrate the Trump campaign as part of its efforts to influence the election,” quoting MSNBC. Click here

“Inside AG Barr’s ‘frantic public relations effort’ around the IG report”

“Attorney General William Barr on Monday rejected a key conclusion of an investigation conducted by his own agency’s watchdog that a probe into Russian interference into the 2016 election was justified. Julia Ainsley joins Nicolle Wallace and details the AG’s motivations,” by MSNBC. Click here

  • Editor’s note: Barr has continued to underscore how he is not the Attorney General of the people of the United States, rather his allegiance is Trump, which is unprecedented in American history! Barr is nothing more than a sycophant to the President whose former sterling reputation lies in tatters in legal circles. Barr should be disbarred! Click here and Read more

December 9, 2019

Why is the ball being dropped in our local governments’ oversight?
Sheriff asks County Commission to cover $500,000 in overspending,
Yelm council to approve $363,375 in unauthorized Splash Park overages.
Yelm’s Splash Park
Credit: City of Yelm

“Thurston Sheriff expects to overspend budget by $500,000”

“The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office expects to overspend its roughly $19.8 million budget for law enforcement this year by more than $500,000 — and it’s requesting the Board of County Commissioners cover that overspending out of the county’s general fund balance.

“It’s the biggest request from the Sheriff for law enforcement overspending that Assistant County Manager Robin Campbell has seen in her nearly 10 years at the county.”

“Assistant County Manager Campbell confirmed that officials have known ‘for some time that the Sheriff was overspending his budget, but no action has been taken,'” by Sara Gentzler, The Olympian. Read more

Yelm’s city council set to approve $363,375 in unauthorized Splash Park/playground cost overruns

The Yelm city council agenda of December 10th has the motion to approve the splash park and playground’s unauthorized cost overruns. Councilor Carmody said on her Facebook page, “We had a presentation [Dec. 3] on the 2019-2020 budget amendments, which includes the splash park/playground overages [$363,375]. While we weren’t super happy about it, we had to balance the budget.” Click here for more on this issue.

  • In other city business set for Dec. 10th, the council is slated to approve Ordinance No. 1057 Amending Title 18 YMC Unified Development Code with changes to the city’s small-cell broadband (5G) and affordable housing codes. Read more

Bottom line: Why is the ball being dropped in our local governments’ spending authority oversight?

December 8, 2019

Yelm area’s award-winning author Bettye Johnson dies – A tribute

Image may contain: 1 person
Rainier-based award-winning author Bettye Johnson
Courtesy: Bettye Johnson, 2008

Yelm-area literary giant passes: Bettye Johnson

  • Posted by Bettye Johnson’s son, Ken Brown on Facebook:

Bettye Johnson, a long time student of RSE [Ramtha’s School of Enlightenment], passed to another new adventure today, December 7th, 2019. Bettye was a lifelong student of her spiritual quest, experiencing the wonderful, with a life of love and adventure. [Ed. note: Johnson was 90.]

Bettye was an award winning author with several of her books winning national acclaim. In her book; Secrets of the Magdalene Scrolls, Bettye wrote a passage that stated that we are each on our journey, we are here to demonstrate and experience the wisdom of life.

Bettye’s wisdom was passed down through her writings for all to experience.

Bettye is survived by her sons: Ken Brown, Mike Brown, and granddaughter Myriah Pearcey.”

About Bettye Johnson

  • Editor’s note: Ms. Johnson’s work and literary contributions to Yelm and vicinity have been noted on this blog since 2006. She was a trailblazer and one of Yelm’s internationally acclaimed titans, bringing notary to the cultural diversity of our community! I was uplifted in knowing her for over 25 years. She will be missed.

Bettye Johnson was a two time Independent Publishers Book Award winner: in 2006 for her first book, Secret of the Madeleine Scrolls and again in 2008 for her book, Mary Magdalene: Her Legacy (Living Free Press).

Bettye was named the 2013 Woman of the Year by the National Assn. of Professional Women Bettye Johnson, for Magdalena of Hy Brasil, Book 3 of the Mary Magdalene Series.

Ms. Johnson was also the founder and facilitator of Yelm’s Writers Night Out Forum, which met the first Monday of each month at Yelm’s Blue Bottle (now Pizzeria LaGitana). She also authored the book Awakening the Genie Within.

In December 2009, she spoke at the Yelm Library on the history of Christmas, the many world-wide customs of Christmas and read a portion from her book A Christmas Awakening.

Ms. Johnson shared this with the Yelm Community Blog in 2013:

“I recently published my memoir, An Uncommon Education: A Memoir. This memoir is about my years working for the American Embassy in Paris from 1952-1955. The Prologue give information about my childhood. I was age 23 when I fulfilled a dream of travelling (sic) the world. I read an article in the Houston, Texas newspaper for clerical to work overseas in the Foreign Service, U.S. State Department. From Paris I was transferred to the embassy in Tokyo where I met and married a career Marine. We had three sons and when he retired, we divorced. A year later I met the man of my dreams and we married. He passed in 2000. I live in Washington State and began serious writing in 2004.”

Ed. Note: This book touched me.

December 7, 2019

Gratitude: uniquely important to psychological well-being
Gratitude Is About the Future, Not the Past “
Credit: Huffington Post

“Giving Thanks Does Your Body Good”

  • From Dr. Joseph Mercola:

Story at-a-glance

  • Gratitude involves affirming the good in your life and recognizing its sources. It is the understanding that life owes you nothing, and that the good things in your life are gifts that cannot be taken for granted
  • Gratitude is uniquely important to psychological well-being. In teenagers, gratitude has been found to correlate with positive emotions, life satisfaction, social support and prosocial behavior
  • Gratitude lowers stress, improves depression and improves emotional resiliency; researchers have suggested gratitude practice can be used as a psychotherapeutic intervention
  • One particularly potent strategy is to write a letter of gratitude to someone whom you’ve not properly thanked for their kindness, and to hand deliver the letter to them. This has been shown to result in an immediate and significant increase in happiness that can last for up to a month
  • A dozen different strategies are reviewed, all of which can help you build and strengthen your sense of gratitude

Read more

December 7, 2019

Christmas lights in Yelm and vicinity

Courtesy: Rory Sagner Photography & Fine Art, © 2019. Used with permission.

Where to Find Christmas Lights in Olympia and Surrounding Areas”

  • By Aigner Loren Wilson, Thurston Talk:

“The cold nights and frozen walks have begun in Thurston County and with them have come the holiday light displays in Olympia and surrounding areas. Around this time of the season, people and businesses bring out their best and brightest light displays to ring in the holidays and new year. Some do it for the joy of it, others for charity, and a rare few for sport. If you are looking for some holiday cheer, check out these Christmas lights in Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater and throughout Thurston County.”


Off W Yelm Avenue toward Railway Road SE, Yelm

Off W Yelm Avenue onto SW Edwards Street, Yelm

Yelm is a city of lights. Beginning on Yelm Highway, people driving or walking through the heart of the town, can see the Christmas lights hung up on several of the local businesses on main street. Off Yelm Highway there are a few neighborhoods with flashing lights that can be seen from the main road. Notable ones are listed above.”

Read more

December 6, 2019

Rep. Denny Heck deserves our gratitude for his sincere explanation on retiring
Credit: Rep. Denny Heck’s media center

“Rep. Denny Heck gives first interview after announcing retirement from Congress”

  • From All In with Chris Hayes, MSNBC:

“Rep. Denny Heck announced this week that he is retiring from Congress. He tells Chris Hayes, ‘If we want to be better than this, it’s time to step up.'”

Click here for the heartfelt December 5th interview every voter in the 10th District should hear!

December 6, 2019

Popular ‘Dickens Carolers’ at JZ-Rose in Yelm –
Saturday, Dec. 7, 10:30am-12noon – OPEN TO THE PUBLIC!
Courtesy: JZ-Rose
  • From JZ Rose:
    “Come enjoy the sounds of Christmas this Saturday at JZ Rose 🎄🎁🎄”

“You are Invited to Join our Holiday Tradition. Bring in the Joy of the Christmas this Saturday Dec. 7th. w/ The Dickens Carolers at JZ Rose!”
Click here

The Dickens Carolers at JZ-Rose is a Yelm holiday tradition, ringing in the joy of the season!
“Adorned in elegant Victorian dress, each ‘a cappella’ quartet consists of two ladies in luxurious velvet and two gentlemen wearing handsome tailcoats and top hats. Your holiday favorites, both traditional and contemporary, are sung in beautiful four-part harmony. The sights and sounds of The Dickens Carolers are indeed a holiday treat.

“The Dickens Carolers: a professional, Victorian-costumed Christmas caroling organization performing throughout the Puget Sound since 1978.”
Read more

JZ Rose – For All Things Beautiful
207 1st Street South
Yelm, WA 98597
Telephone: 360-458-4618 or
Toll Free: 877-458-4618
Click here for the JZ-Rose story.






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