"From Near Death to Living Hope"

On the night of Sept. 6, 2000, Hector celebrated his 20th birthday by partying with his friends. He drunkenly made a deal to sell a kilo of cocaine to a man in the next town over. While driving there, Hector noticed several state patrol cars trailing his car. He started to speed, attempting to flee arrest, but it didn’t work. Hector spent a year in Douglas County Jail in Minnesota, facing a conviction of up to 40 years in prison. Hector’s wife visited with their children and said that she was leaving him. It was the last time that he would ever see them. In four months behind bars, Hector lost everything.

Q&A: Vickery Meadow Local Market director Sarah Perry

It’s been about two months since the launch of the Vickery Meadow Local Market, which sets up shop in the Half Price Books parking lot each Sunday, selling locally grown food, crafts and more. Curious about the market — named for one of the most highly diverse communities in the city — I interviewed Sarah Perry, director of the Vickery Meadow and White Rock local markets, to learn more. What inspired you to start the Vickery Meadow Local Market? The Vickery Meadow neighborhood is a dynamic an

T.C. Marsh unveils new name, curriculum, for 2014-2015 school year

This week Dallas ISD students are beginning the 2014-2015 school year. And although the students, faculty, and parents of  T.C. Marsh Middle School are returning to the same campus, many new changes are already underway. Principal Nicky Niewinski, now in her second year as Marsh principal, has announced, along with DISD trustees, that Marsh is being “re-imagined” this year. This includes an official name change — Thomas C. Marsh Preparatory Academy — plus a new logo, higher academic standards,

Urban Vines brings wine to the White Rock dining scene

When Eastwood resident and wine bar owner Jennifer Rodriguez opened Urban Vines with her co-owner and fiancé, Jon Sparks, she set out to create the ideal setting to unwind. “Every time that I visited a wine bar, I always thought of what I would do differently if I was in charge, so I decided to create one of my own,” Rodriguez says. And despite the fact that Rodriguez was — and still is — busy as a full-time lawyer, Urban Vines opened just over a year ago. “We needed something like this on thi

The making of a health and wellness empire

In the 1940s, a lone brick mansion with white pillars stood on the northeast corner of Preston and Willow, surrounded by acres of cotton fields. “I remember when my dad planted the crape myrtles and stocked the ponds with perch, largemouth bass and catfish that we’d fish for,” recalls Houston Nichols, the Preston Hollow resident who grew up on the property. “The pond would attract ducks that my mom loved to watch. It was a very park-like setting.” Today, the same crape myrtles line 30 acres of

Delicious: Brunch at Woodlands American Grill

Brunch conjures up images of friends and family lingering over eggs, breakfast potatoes, bacon and, hopefully, a mimosa or two. Add some pleasant spring weather, three patio areas and impeccable service, and you just might be talking about a weekend brunch at Woodlands American Grill. The restaurant has standard brunch fare — French toast, eggs Benedict, biscuits and gravy — but with little touches that up the ante. For instance, the berries that accompany the French toast are drizzled with a pe

Top-5 Friday: Enjoy The Comforts of Home, Plus Ski Resort Perks, at these Rental Properties

While some of us despise the chilly winter winds that have been a-blowing and prefer to bundle up indoors until bikini season arrives, skiers and snowboarders alike know that the storms that blew through Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming this week (and will continue on through the northeast next week) offer the perfect, powdery platform for a fantastic weekend out on the slopes. Below, check out our top five vacation rental homes to enjoy the best of both worlds: top notch skiing paired with ameni

From Snagging Investment Properties to Calling Bluff on Naughty Realtors, Bill Petrey Believes Clients Deserve More Transparency From Agents | Candy's Dirt

Nearly 13 years ago, Bill Petrey moved to Dallas with his wife to hunt for investment properties. After earning his real estate license, Petrey’s experiences as a Realtor in the Dallas market inspired him to create his own real estate consulting company, Agent Harvest — a performance-based real estate agent rating service that matches clients with top-ranking real estate agents — based right in the heart of Dallas. Just for kicks, Petrey also developed the Really Rotten Realty blog, which is a

From 538 pounds to a marathon medal: Rick Salewske inspires new goals for 2014

When you’re a 538-pound man, there aren’t many physical activities that you can do with great ease. Simply traveling from Texas to Michigan during the holidays can be an exhausting ordeal, as Rick Salewske, who weighed just that at age 38, recalls. “When I would visit my family in Michigan, my sisters would be dating, having kids, and moving on. Every year I would just put on more and more pounds,” he says. Because the airplane safety belt wouldn’t fit around his body, Salewske had to drive fr

Life Giving Faith

How do people know that you are a Christian? Is it because they know that you go to church on Sunday, go to Bible studies, and go on retreats? Is it because you spend most of your time with other believers and avoid tempting environments? Is it because you don’t drink, smoke, or wear immodest clothing? As Christians, sometimes we are so concerned with pleasing God and appearing holy that we forget God loved us first, in our brokenness. God loves us deeply as we are and desires for us to love Him in gratitude. God wants us to share this love with others.