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When “mini” relatives come to your home over the holidays, strive to be safe and flexible. Don’t make a scene if fancy dinners, new dresses or tight hugs are rejected.Advice in Parent to Parent five years ago continues to be appropriate now: The push and pull of who goes where and how long they stay – too short, too long – can push loved ones away. Go for a forgiving appro…

Writers are shameless when it comes to book promotion. The length they will go to is one notch shy of standing curbside with a cardboard sign that says, “Will Work for Book Sales.”I know such behavior is rampant because I recently engaged in it. I agreed to sell my latest humor book, “My Memory is Shot, All I Retain Now is Water,” at a huge Christmas Gift and Hobby show. T…

Dear Abby: I’m the proud mother of four beautiful children – a daughter, a son and 8-year-old twin boys. I am having a hard time getting people to understand that my boys, whom I rarely refer to as “twins,” are two SEPARATE people! Every year at Christmas some family members buy gifts for our daughter and our eldest son, and then ONE gift our younger boys are expected to s…

Lifestyles

While she slept, thieves struckNew York City police say thieves broke into Keri Russell’s Brooklyn home while she was sleeping and stole a laptop, jewelry and a purse.The 37-year-old star of the FX show “The Americans” was asleep when she heard footsteps and voices at about 3 a.m. Wednesday. Police say she then found a window and front door open and her belongings missing.…

By Alan Pergament If you're a regular reader of this blog, you might have wondered why I didn't write about the overblown national reports about the Western New York snowstorm last week. Truth is I was out of town, never turned on the TV and missed the reports. Forgive me for being a little late dealing with the overblown national weather reports but I was preocc…

Note: The 10-course truffle feast set for Sunday at Mike A’s at the Lafayette, and described in print editions of today’s paper, has been canceled because of problems obtaining the key ingredients.Chef Mike Andrzejewski said he learned Wednesday that he would not be able to get the prized white Italian and black French truffles the night’s menu was to highlight. The dinner…

Q: My friend and I read your column, and we have recently had a disagreement. She feels because you have been divorced, you have no right to give readers advice about maintaining a relationship. I feel because you have been divorced, you may give even better advice than someone who has never been through a breakup. So, for the record, is there any time you would say leavin…

Dear Abby: I have been with my fiance since 2006. We expected to be married in 2008, but my grandmother died a month before my wedding, and then he was arrested because of charges stemming from a sexual relationship he’d had with a 17-year-old girl he had been counseling. Since then, we have had a daughter, but through it all there has been cheating, drugs, jail, no job an…

Ask most health professionals about the most valuable thing you can do for good health, and you’re likely to be told to exercise. Regular physical activity is good for the heart, the brain and the body as a whole. It helps control weight, boosts good HDL cholesterol, improves mood, enhances sexual performance and lowers the likelihood of developing diabetes and some cancer…

Dear Carolyn: As I write, my husband is halfway across the country taking care of his ailing mother. We have had a terrible “text” fight over the past few days, and it revolves mostly around the fact that he thinks I am “compassionless” about his mother’s situation, and I am not being supportive of his decision to stay weeks with her while I fly solo holding down our famil…

Lifestyles

‘Curb Appeal’ co-host killedA co-host of the HGTV show “Curb Appeal” has been killed in a motorcycle accident in San Francisco.The San Francisco medical examiner identified 38-year-old Bill Beckwith as the victim of a crash near the city’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood Monday night. He was riding a motorcycle that was struck by a car.Beckwith was one of the three hosts of “C…

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford apparently is no longer “a sweetheart” to Channel 2 anchor Maryalice Demler.On Sunday and Monday, Demler was involved in what have to be two of the classic moments in local broadcasting history.On Sunday, Demler went on Twitter and tweeted a picture of herself with Ford, the disgraced Toronto mayor, at the Buffalo Bills game against Atlanta in the Ca…

By Alan Pergament Today is the day that Time Warner Cable's new, theme-based digital channel lineup made its debut across many areas of Western New York. The city of Buffalo, Olean and a few other WNY areas get the new lineup on Thursday. I've tried to explain it a few times before in blogs. But judging by my emails and a Channel 7 story Monday night, some people…

Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it’s officially OK to admit that you’re thinking about – and maybe even excited about – Christmas.There is a reason many think of this as the most wonderful time of the year. For many, it’s because of a happy memory that is connected to something about this season and that day. An unexpected reunion. The joy on a child’s face. That …

Time Warner Cable’s new channel lineup went into effect Tuesday for most of Western New York and will reach everyone by Thursday.What may initially seem like channel scramble is the cable provider’s new theme-based digital lineup.The lineup groups channels into themes such as “Entertainment,” “News & Info,” “Sports,” “Music,” “Kids & Teens” and “Premiums.” The cable provid…