The LeVie-Hilton barn is just the latest in cherished places that have been lost; identifying what we value now will help preserve our remaining heritage for the future.

The crazy salad that is America is made of many distinct histories; we need the tools to claim our past in order to interpret our own experiences.

"Life is painting a picture, not doing a sum," said Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., a judge who might well have approved of the way kids at Altamont Elementary School assessed picture books.

Let's see the snowy owl as a harbinger of hope and change our ways before it is too late.

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