• By Sharon Sweatt
    Chesterfield County Coordinating Council
    Guest column

    As you begin that family vacation or plan that day trip, remember to travel safe.
    Buckle up correctly using lap and shoulder belts (under 12 in the backseat). Remember to enjoy the family time. Use sunscreen (especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.), and wear shades. Forget the tanning bed!

    Guest column

    Editor’s note: This is an expanded version of a column that appeared the first week of May in The State newspaper.

    May 4 marked Gov. Henry McMaster’s 100th day in office. Since there was such a flurry of reporting about Pres. Trump’s first 100 days, it seems appropriate to look at what Gov. McMaster has achieved in his first 100 days.

    Guest column

    Through the winter months, I had been thinking about how I was going to tackle the huge project of replacing our privacy fence in the spring.
    I have built this type of fence before and those of you that are familiar with this, will understand when I say it is very hard work, especially when you are doing it by yourself.

    Guest column

    Moving into a place of your own for the first time is a huge step. I remember my first post-college apartment move. It was nothing special, but it was mine.
    It came with a few new challenges and responsibilities, and all sorts of opportunities. For the first time, I was able to decide how to decorate an entire living area and turn a blank slate into a home.

  • I’m a Dew girl, myself.

    When I have to satisfy my thirst with a cold, fizzling carbonated soda – or “pop” as my friends up north call it – I grab a Mountain Dew.

    But when it comes to the cola wars, as in Coke versus Pepsi, it really never mattered to me – until recently. To be honest, I thought there wasn’t much of a difference.


    Guest column

    About two years ago, a friend of mine got in touch with me. We had lost contact for a while because she moved from Charlotte to New York.

    We got to know each other about 18 years ago. When she moved, I tried calling her, but she never returned my calls.

    I called one particular day and the number was no longer working. I thought that’s not like her to change her number and not let me know.

  • I could write my own book on all I’ve learned over the years from self-help publications.

    Yeah, I’m a fan. Some people puke at the idea of digesting this genre, but I swallow up the concepts with a big spoon.

    And try to apply them to my life.

    Live the life you imagine.

    Start your day with positive affirmations.

    Put feet to your prayers.

    That thing you wanted to be as a child is what your true purpose is.


    Guest column

    Well folks, this is part two of my column about my well- dressed friend. Last week I ended it by mentioning that not only did a wooden doll get missing, but now I was looking for a wooden duck. Here we go.

    When the owner of the wooden duck saw that it was gone off the shelf, she asked me if I had sold it. I replied, no. We looked all over the store for this darn wooden duck. Folks, we did not find it.


    Guest column

    Well folks, I’ve been away for a few months. It seems as if my plate is always full.

    On Sept. 17, 2016, my family and I drove to Louisiana for my son, Daydron’s, wedding. He married a young lady named Bianca. She is in the Navy. He did seven years in the Navy as well. This happens to be not only something new for him, but also for me – meaning, having a daughter-in-law.


    Guest column

    Somehow, I managed to convince my husband that we needed a family photo. So, there we are, standing in front of a pair of cedars out in the field.

    My husband and our daughter are to my right, and we’re all smiling for the camera. To my left is my son, Chad, and he’s staring off to the left at something only he can see, doing that thing he does with his hands.

    It’s a good shot, and it captures our family perfectly.


    Guest column

    Many women are diligent about eating right, exercising regularly and getting their annual check-ups, which includes screenings for cervical cancer (Pap test) and breast cancer (mammograms).

    But there is one cancer that is silently killing women for which there is no screening, and many women are unaware of the symptoms: ovarian cancer.

    In fact, of the five main types of gynecologic cancers – cervical, ovarian, uterine, vaginal and vulvar – only cervical cancer has a screening test.


    Guest column

    Last week, I was sitting in my office on a dreary afternoon, tapping on the keyboard and listening to the rain blowing against the window.

    The house is quiet during the day as my writing routine commonly includes both dogs sprawled out on the hardwood floor snoring contently around my desk.

  • February is the month of love, black history and the amethyst birthstone – my favorite color.

    When we celebrate Valentine’s Day, it is the love and affection toward our significant others that we tend to express.

    But this year, I have another object of love that I want to talk about.

    Last year in early spring, a lady walked into the office of the Pageland Progressive Journal and asked if anyone wanted a cat.

  • Many people across the nation are still shocked by Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.

    Needless to say, a lot of people are also disappointed and hurt, while others are angry and taking to the streets across the country in mostly peaceful protests of Trump’s victory.

    Guest column

    Deciding to make a charitable contribution can arise from a desire to help others, a passionate commitment to a cause or the aim to give back to a group that once helped you or a loved one.
    Choosing which organizations you want to support can be difficult. There are more than a million public charities in the United States, according to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, and every dollar you give to Charity A is a dollar you might not be able to match for Charity B.

  • Many people are confused about what the “Black Lives Matter” movement involves.

    This movement originated in the African-American community in response to the deaths of black people, especially males, in killings by law enforcement officers, which appear to be unnecessary.

  • Progressive Journal editor

    Two years ago, I became a half sandwich. (Keep reading.)

    No only did I return to journalism after a six-year hiatus by serving as editor of your hometown newspaper, but I also moved back home – with mom.

    While both have presented their own challenges, a free-spirited, adventurous single woman in her prime having to tone it way down to accommodate an elderly parent wins the gold.


    Guest column

    On July 8, 2016, five policemen were shot and killed by a lone attacker, a young African-American by the name of Micah Johnson.

    The attack by Johnson stemmed from two shootings by police that killed two African-American men: Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, La., in front of a convenience store while he was already down; and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minn., who was shot and killed in front of his girlfriend and child.


    Guest column

    Last week, I did an article on the Watermelon Festival, where I took comments from visiting guests and a few of our locals.

    Just in case you did not read last week’s paper, I didn’t get a lot of good comments. That hurt my feelings because I am a part of the Chamber of Commerce and I know so many people who worked hard to make it a great festival.

  • This year makes 65 years that Pageland has been hosting the Watermelon Festival.

    I work at a store in downtown Pageland. Being on the main street, I get to interact with a lot of foot traffic during the festival. I also serve on the Chamber of Commerce board, which sponsors the festival.

    As always, new faces come into the store. This year, I asked a few of the new faces on Saturday, the last day of the festival, how they enjoyed everything?