‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 
Monday, Jan. 17, 2022
Good Monday morning to you!

Whatever happened to conversion vans? If you are smiling right now, you probably owned one. If anything ever needed to come back, these are it.

I never owned a conversion van. I’m a bit too young for those, but my older brother had one. He also had a moustache, silk shirts and a belt with his name on it. Just saying.

If you don’t recall what a conversion van was, let me help you out. They were essentially cargo vans that were decked out, typically by a third-party company but also by a generation of do-it-yourselfers. Popular full-sized models used for the base included the Chevrolet Van, the Dodge Ram Van, the Ford E-Series and my personal favorite, the GMC Vandura.

Trendy features included shag carpet, captain’s seats, luxury lighting, 8-track players and lots of oak trim. The cool ones had fold-down beds, fiberglass bubble tops and gas stoves.

Conversion vans started to become popular in the 1960s with the hippies, and those Volkswagen models really were groovy. But the ones I recall were in the 1970s — and the more custom paint they had, the better. Think nature scenes, flames and lots of Americana. Those were the days of Evel Knievel, after all. The side windows were also a signature feature, often in small circles, rectangles or diamonds and almost always tinted.

Few things are as identifiable with the 1970s era as conversion vans. Unfortunately, they went by the wayside along with dark wood paneling, crochet throws and bean bag chairs.

Some say that the demise of conversion vans was due to the federal government and vehicle manufacturers demanding new safety guidelines be adhered to. Others say the vans priced themselves out of the market with extravagant features. In reality, the rising cost of fuel made these gas-hogs less attractive for the average American.

Regardless, conversion vans were the ultimate vehicle for road trips, and they looked really cool in the driveway. Don't call it a comeback, but you, too, may be driving one soon.

Have a marvelous Monday, and thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman
President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

Enjoy the Daily Umbrella? Try another newsletter!

If you enjoy receiving the Daily Umbrella, you may also enjoy one of our weekly emails, with updated news, features, weather and much more, delivered to your email for free. Unsubscribe at any time with one click. And, as always, unlike others, we will never sell your information.

Go to www.biggreenumbrellamedia.com and click on SUBSCRIBE.



Your Clear Mortgage forecast from Jason Parkin

We’ll melt some snow today and tomorrow before a colder air mass moves into the state Wednesday. Colder temps will stick around through Friday, with a chance for light snow on Saturday.

For help with preapprovals or refinancing, get in touch with Jason at parkin.mortgage

Things To Do

Monday, Jan. 17
Iowa Wild vs. Milwaukee Admirals, 2 p.m.
At: Wells Fargo Arena, 730 Third St., Des Moines
Just a step below the NHL, the Iowa Wild ice hockey team plays in the American Hockey League and supports the Minnesota Wild.

Featured Home For Sale
Attention Realtors, post your listings here for $50. Contact pat@dmcityview.com for details.
3848 E 29th Street
Des Moines, IA 50317
WOW Almost half acre in town. Everything on one level. Close to grocery store, Freeway and Interstate access within minutes. On bus Route. Home has an enclosed front porch, nice sized living room, and kitchen with plenty of cabinets. Laundry is just steps from kitchen and master bedroom....
Find Out More!

FROM KCCI:  Kirk Ferentz disbands diversity group created after 2020 probe

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa football coach Kirk Ferentz has disbanded an alumni advisory committee that was created after a 2020 investigation found evidence of racial bias against Black players in his program and bullying behavior by some of his assistants. The Gazette reports that Ferentz’ decision to end the committee came shortly after its leader, former offensive lineman David Porter, suggested it was time for Iowa to part ways with Ferentz. But Ferentz said he had decided to overhaul the committee last fall before Porter made his comment to other committee members in a text message.  ...READ MORE FROM KCCI

FROM WHO-TV: Gov. Reynolds defends 4% flat income tax proposal: ‘It makes us very competitive’

... Right now, there are four tax brackets for personal income tax. By 2026, Reynolds wants just one with a 4% tax rate. Iowans making $75,000 or more per year would see their taxes drop the most from 6.5% to the flat 4% rate. Iowans making $30,000 or less would see the smallest decline. Because of this, an Iowa State University economist said the flat tax rate would favor wealthy Iowans the most. READ MORE FROM WHO-TV

FROM WOI-DT Local 5: Private insurance companies must now cover the cost of at-home tests—what that means for small pharmacies

 DES MOINES, Iowa — As of Saturday, Americans can get at-home COVID-19 test kits free of charge, thanks to a new federal policy. Purchases can be billed under insurance, or buyers can submit receipts for reimbursement after the fact. However, even when tests are free, you can't buy them if you can't find them. Leslie Herron, the owner of Sumpter Pharmacy, said keeping take-home tests on shelves has been nearly impossible.... READ MORE FROM WOI-DT Local 5

CITYVIEW's Best Of Des Moines 2022

The polls have closed, the results have been tallied, and the 2022 Best Of Des Moines readers' choices will be announced soon! Watch for results in the February issue of CITYVIEW!


Meet Hanna Sanders: Enjoying the curiosity and hugs of elementary students

By TK West

After growing up in southeastern Iowa, Hanna Sanders received an undergraduate degree from Central College before pursuing a master’s degree at Creighton University. She then worked at West Central Valley Middle School before recently joining the Adel-DeSoto-Minburn Community School District. She is now in her first year with the district, working as a second through fourth grade school counselor at Meadow View Elementary School.

“This is my first year working with elementary students, and I look forward to their joyful spirits and all of their hugs, every single day. Their curiosity about the world, ability to bravely learn and try new things, and the ways they show compassion and kindness to each other is the absolute best,” Sanders says.


Read more
Hiring Event

Wednesday, Jan. 19
7am - 3pm CDT
at the West Des Moines Marriott, 1250 Jordan Creek Pkwy
Positions include: Specialized Rail Equipment Operators, Mechanics, Technicians, and more!
OJT and nationwide travel available
Click here for more info and to RSVP.



EMPLOYERS: Place your help wanted ad on our Jobs Board for FREE! For information about placing your ad in our print products, email pat@dmcityview.com.




See all jobs listings

My patio door early morning view after the snow, with frost and before the sun. Sunday, Jan. 16, 2022. — Photo by Diane Ferguson

SEND YOUR PHOTOS of favorite places to visit in Iowa! (Or, anything else of interest!)

Email to tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com to be included in an upcoming Daily Umbrella!
Digital Editions

Norwalk Living magazine is published each month and mailed to every household in the neighborhood. The January issue cover story, "Pets of a different kind" is about locals who have chosen unusual pets and what they have to say about them. Also included are other features, informational articles and local photos. Each edition, as well as the archives, may be viewed at www.iowalivingmagazines.com. Read the January issue here.

Birthdays and Notables!

Happy Birthday to these celebrities: Jim Carrey, Zooey Deschane, Michelle Obama, Steve Harvey, Dwyane Wade, James Earl Jones, Ray J, Maksim Chmerkovskiy

Betty White would have been 100 today.

SUBMIT: Send your birthday greetings and congratulatory notes to:tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com

Poll of the Week

Have you received your COVID-19 booster shot?

Not yet, but I plan to
No, and I do not intend to


Should masks be mandated in Iowa right now in an effort to stop the further spread of COVID-19?

Yes - 61%
No - 34%
Not sure - 5%

Morning Chuckle
What do we call a deer without any eye?
NO-EYE-DEER (NO IDEA). Way to go Martha Munro, Lori Bluml, Lu Anne Gafford
Or: A blinder (blind deer), from Peri Van Tassel. OR AprirateDEER from Rex Post. 


Why do male deer need braces?

Have a guess? Email tammy@iowalivingmagazines.com 


If you would like to advertise in this daily newsletter, please contact Pat Checketts at pat@dmcityview.com, or call 515-953-4822 xt. 311.

P.S. As a free newsletter, we rely on readers like you to grow our subscriber list. If you have a friend or coworker who you think would enjoy waking up to The Daily Umbrella each weekday morning, please share our newsletter sign-up page with them! Visit www.thedailyumbrella.com and click on the SUBSCRIBE link on the upper right-hand side!


This email was sent to: email@somehost.com

Big Green Umbrella Media, Inc.
8101 Birchwood Court, Suite D
Johnston, Iowa 50131