North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL


May 22, 2013

Danielle Cater: Life goals are set during graduation

COMMENTARY — Many parents are breathing a sigh of relief this week as their teenager finally graduates from high school. It is during the next few months that these kids will be making life-altering decisions.

Some will decide to go ahead and marry their high school sweetheart while settling into the role of husband and wife. Others will blow out the summer and then head straight to college in order to further themselves and their future. And sadly, there are those who will find no direction and end up not working or going to school while living off of their parents until something more drastic than graduation takes place.

Growing up around our house, there was an understood rule that as soon as you graduated high school, you had better have a job lined up because our folks weren’t going to pay your way through life.

Apparently that was the best scenario we could have been thrown into because my siblings and I have all three turned out to be pretty decent people. I ended up getting a college degree in education; my brother has a solid job with the county and is going back to college to get a degree; and my sister has worked in education for the past 10 years and has made her mark as a wonderful mother and wife.

When I look back on my senior year of high school, it scares me more now than it did back then. Now I see how important every decision that I made was going to be. Picking a major in college and starting your first real job are things that have monumental effects on the rest of your life. But at the time, it just seems like the natural next step in life.

The important steps of choosing a career and spouse are basically thrown at these kids and I think we often forget that they are only 18 years old. Nothing drives that home harder than thinking of the young men and women who will start a military career when exiting high school. These kids aren’t old enough to buy alcohol or tobacco, but they are putting their lives on the line for our country and they are deciding to do so in their teenage years.

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  • Danielle Cater: Be strong in moments of weakness

    A sad scene took place on Sunday at a church in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The founding pastor of Calvary Chapel stepped down from his position of head pastor due to “moral failing which disqualifies him from continuing his leadership role at the church.” This church is home to over 20,000 members who worship together in 10 locations across Florida.

    April 15, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: Old dogs can learn new tricks

    You’re never too old to learn something new. I’m of the opinion that you can, indeed, teach an old dog new tricks.
    So as an old dog, I’ve been trying to pick up a new trick.

    April 7, 2014

  • Commentary: Bad vacation attitudes won't last forever

    In these photos, everyone else in the family is smiling as if this were their favorite vacation of all times, but I am huffing with my arms crossed and a literal frown on my face.

    March 26, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: I’ll never live down running out of gas

    Have you ever had one of those days where you are functioning on four hours of sleep, and yet you still have to get up at 5:45 a.m. to get the family to church by 7 a.m. on the other side of town? After church you run home to get ready for your 6-year-old’s birthday party and then head straight back to church to help with the services until after 9 p.m.? That just might be a good description of our Sunday afternoon. Whoever said “easy like Sunday morning” obviously didn’t have kids and probably didn’t go to church.

    March 20, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: Most people aren’t politically correct

    I probably work in the wrong profession to hate political correctness, but I do. I can’t stand it when I feel as if I need to walk on eggshells all the time to keep from hurting people’s feelings. I don’t try to be excessively offensive, but people are so easily offended these days, it’s almost impossible not to tick someone off by everything that you say or do.

    March 14, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: Lessons, fun times make retreats enjoyable

    I did something recently that is apparently out of the ordinary for most people. I went to a marriage conference while I was not in the midst of marital problems.

    March 6, 2014

  • Letter to the editor: Thanks to Gardendale citizens for hospitality

    We, along with many other travelers, spent the next two days and nights in your splendid center. We are of the opinion that we couldn’t have been stranded in a better place.

    February 28, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: Be sure to give your kids what they need

    Once the snow melted this week, life went back to normal and we all found ourselves busy with our regular day-to-day activities, and trying to catch up on everything we had put on the back burner during the snow days.
    Our household had a busy weekend, and among the events of the weekend, we celebrated our second birthday in three weeks. That’s right, our perfectly-blended family has given us two daughters who celebrate birthdays within three weeks of each other.

    February 18, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: Find excitement in the boring days

    Many people got to take a vacation day this past Monday for MLK Day. What this day stands for is a great cause and an issue that should be addressed, but for many people, it was just another holiday.
    Our office is like most other offices, so we were open to the public Monday. But since schools and daycares were closed, I got the privilege of staying home with the four best daughters in the world. We started off the day with the attitude of fun.

    January 22, 2014

  • Danielle Cater: One year down, rest of my life to go

    Dec. 29, 2013 has come and gone, and for many people it held no lasting significance. But for me, it marked the first anniversary of marriage to my amazing husband.

    January 9, 2014