Thumbs-up: to the DMV? Yes … with an increase in online drivers license services. Now, drivers can skip a physical trip to the local DMV to renew a license, update an address, order a duplicate license or any one of a number of other services. For more information, visit myncdmv.gov or download the myNCDMV app.

Thumbs-down: to being out and about at 3:30 a.m. on a snowy day — but we’re fortunate that Watauga County Schools authorities are willing to weather such conditions to keep our students safe. By 3:30 a.m. road check teams consisting of the superintendent and other staff members physically travel roads to assess conditions as needed throughout Watauga County as part of an informational package that goes into determining whether or not classes are delayed or canceled. The average number of days schools are closed for snow and ice annually: 15.

Thumbs-up: to preventive care. It’s flu season and AppHealthCare and Appalachian Regions Healthcare System — in addition to the Centers for Disease Contral and Prevention — are encouraging people to get the flu vaccine. Flu infections in North Carolina are common from late fall to early spring with a typical peak occurring in January and February.

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