My favorite Goodwill find

Necklaces are tricky. We love to wear them, but how do you store them without getting tangled? How do you display them so you have easy access to your jewelry options? I’ve done the ‘pins on a fabric covered bulletin board’ thing, but when I moved to a new apartment I wanted something a little different.

Enter Goodwill. One afternoon when I was browsing the thrift store for nothing in particular I came across this great wicker dream catcher. A quick coat of clear spray paint sealed up the wicker and added a little bit of shine. I picked up S hooks at the hardware store to hang the necklaces. Hanging above my dresser, the dream catcher now serves as both wall art and a clever way to store and display my jewelry.

That’s the thing with Goodwill. You never know what you’re going to find, but sometimes what you find is exactly what you’ve been looking for.

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Goodwill Omaha student is a star of the dancefloor

Marshal and Cassie at Dancing with the Omaha Stars / photo courtesy of Rod Rabe

By day, Marshal Rabe is one of the 26 Work Experience students at Goodwill’s Retail Operations Center, learning problem solving, independence, and various tasks around the facility. But by night, Marshal is a world-champion ballroom dancer!

Marshal and his dance partner Cassie Lacy were featured performers at the Omaha Ballroom’s “Dancing with the Omaha Stars” event on January 14. Marshal and Cassie danced a waltz during intermission, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd and some perfect 10 scores from the panel of judges.

Marshal has been dancing all his life. His family owns the Rabe Dance Studio in Omaha, where Marshal has trained since childhood. He is a Country Western Dance World Champion, and he teaches Hip-Hop Dance at the Rabe Dance Studio.

He and Cassie met at a play production and have been dancing together ever since. Like Marshal, Cassie has Down syndrome, and she too has been dancing all her life. In addition to the Waltz, the two also perform Tango, Swing and Cha-Cha numbers.

Marshal began working with Goodwill’s Work Experience Program in August of 2011. WE Trainer Sarah Lorsung Tvrdik said that Marshal currently works on sorting and bundling shoes, which has been his favorite task so far. Throughout the course of the year, he will also work in the e-waste / computer recycling, clerical, production, custodial, contracts and retail departments.

“He enjoys interacting with the other students and has a good sense of humor,” Sarah said.

In addition to working at the ROC, Marshal also maintains a part-time job at the Garden Café.

Congratulations Marshal. Keep up the great work, and keep on dancing!

UPDATE! – Jan 23 WOWT Channel 6 ran a story on Marshal over the weekend! In addition to getting to know Marshal and Cassie better, you can see the two in action from last week’s Dancing with the Omaha Stars event.

ANOTHER UPDATE! – Jan 27 Marshal and Cassie are both featured in a video at Kirstie Alley’s! Scroll down to the bottom under “Featured Videos.”

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And the winner of the Reserve “Name That Cover” Contest is…

…Lauren W.!

Congratulations, Lauren, and thanks to all of you who entered the Reserve “Name That Cover” Contest. Entrants had to have all six album covers correctly identified in order to be eligible for the drawing. For those interested, here are the albums:

1. Neutral Milk Hotel “In the Aeroplane Over the Sea”

Continue reading

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The Goodwill Gal stops by Reserve

Goodwill-loving thrifter and blogger The Goodwill Gal recently shared her laundry room decor, which features a piece she bought at Reserve: Goodwill in the Market. It’s safe to say that she enjoyed her visit.

This store has the most amazing vintage items all in one stop. I came away with some wonderful items but not nearly all I wanted due to luggage restraints.

Thanks for stopping by, GG, and thanks for sharing your find! If you’ve found something great at Reserve or any of our stores that you’d like to share with us, send us an email at [email protected] or post it on our Facebook wall. It’s also still not too late to enter to win a $25 Goodwill gift certificate redeemable at Reserve!

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On “Being Retarded”

Blogger Phoebe Holmes “never planned on going viral.” But in late December 2011, the mom of four wrote an entry on her personal blog about “Being retarded” — specifically, use of the word “retarded” as a synonym for “stupid” — and the Internet noticed.

Holmes is the mother of Maura, a young girl diagnosed with cognitive disabilities — or in other words, mentally retarded. And so she wrote a little about how people’s casual misapplication of that word reflects on her life and her daughter. The post, not to mention Holmes’ positivity and love and admiration for her daughter, apparently struck a chord with the people of the Internet, and her normal 50-100 hits-per-post turned into 90,000-plus as the link spread around social media networks.

For me, it’s not just any old word – it’s my daughter. My beautiful, bright, happy, loving, amazing daughter who is slow or limited in intellectual development and academic progress.

In our household, being retarded means something different.

It means not being able to fully care for yourself.

It means not understanding what the doctor is going to do to you.

It means not being able to explain what hurts when something hurts.

It means not being able to ride a two wheeler. Or read. Or ever be able to live on your own.

But ever the optimist, I also know that retarded means…

…never realizing the negativity behind the word retarded.

…never knowing the insensitivity surrounded the word’s usage.

…never realizing the ignorance of people.

…never knowing how other people view you.

Being retarded also means…

…loving unconditionally.

…finding joy in the smallest of things.

…being self-confident.

…not realizing that there are limitations.


If you haven’t seen it yet, give the whole thing a read.

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Introducing the Reserve “Name That Cover” contest!

You may have noticed some of our Reserve ads in The Reader over the past few months — they’re all tributes to classic albums. And now your ability to recognize the originals can give you a chance to win a $25 Goodwill gift certificate in our Reserve “Name That Cover” contest.

Here’s how it works:

Visit our Facebook page at Check out our gallery called Reserve “Name That Cover” Contest, which includes all six advertisements. If you think you know the album that each is based on, e-mail us at [email protected] with the artist and title of all six. We’ll collect entries this week and next, and at noon on Friday, January 13th, we’ll draw a winner from all of the correct entries.

The winner receives a $25 Goodwill gift certificate, which they can collect at Reserve: Goodwill in the Market at 13th & Howard.

Good luck!

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