Marriage is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make, so the last thing you want to do is go in unprepared.
This week, Mandy and Tom, my former sister-in-law and brother-in-law, came to visit.
Q: What does a recent report card about lawmakers tell Iowans about your work in Congress?
Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. A day that focuses on romantic love, but is more appropriately a day to celebrate love in all its forms—with beloved friends, close relatives, even the furry members of the family.
Greetings from Capitol Hill: Supplemental State Aid and School Transportation Costs:
I sit here in disappointed wonder and, paraphrasing a Bible verse, I’m asking: “What hath mankind wrought?”

Opinions

How do we measure the value of a single life? It’s an impossible task—too subjective, individual, and too abstract. Not only would such a hypothetical analysis be fundamentally unobtainable in terms of results, but perhaps more important the very idea that anyone—even hypothetically—would want to...
Q: Why do you support the First Step Act? A: This bipartisan legislation would make historic reforms to the nation’s criminal justice system to restore fairness, strengthen public safety and reduce crime. The vast majority of prison inmates will one day be released back into our communities after...
Getting ready for the Baby Steps Dear Dave, I like your plan, and I’m ready to get control of my finances. Should I catch up on past due bills before saving $1,000 for the beginner emergency fund you recommend in Baby Step 1? Samantha Dear Samantha, This is a great question, because it gives...
    Labels. Identity. Home . . . These are abstract concepts that we all too often and unnecessarily attempt to validate via tangible documents, legal claims, or even simple declaration. Do not misunderstand—most of the time, these abstractions are harmless as they give one a better sense of self...
By Rhea Landholm Center for Rural Affairs This holiday season, will you be among 83 percent of consumers who plan to do some portion of their holiday shopping at a small, independently owned retailer or restaurant? These types of businesses are what keep our small communities thriving. Up and...
Q: How does Iowa rank for civic engagement?   A: As the launching pad for the presidential campaign trail, Iowans are an engaged electorate. In fact, unofficial numbers from the November elections suggest Iowa broke an all-time record for votes cast in a midterm election, reaching nearly 61...
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, which means holiday shopping is underway. If you’re a spender like me, your head is spinning with all the upcoming festivities. The holidays are such a magical time of year, but I think we can all agree they’re not-so-magical for our wallets. It’s easy to...
I was convinced that, this week, I was going to write a response to certain political goings-on that have been (predictably) rampant of late, but there has been something weighing heavily with my family and myself, that I just feel I needed to address (since I know they read this). It has been a...
I have something important to tell you: Stop saying “I can’t.” Yes, you can. Why am I on this rant? I came across a study that says 64 percent of millennials don’t think they’ll ever reach $1 million in retirement savings. Really? Why not? I say you can. Here’s how. Start Early Of all the age...
Retirement or debt? Dear Dave, Do you think I should lower the amount I’m contributing to my 401(k) so I can pay off my house and my truck? Jamie Dear Jamie, If you’re following my plan, the first thing you should do is set aside a beginner emergency fund of $1,000. That’s Baby Step 1. Next...

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204 N. Mill Street
Lake Mills, IA 50450

Office Number: (641) 592-4222
Fax Number: (641) 592-6397

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