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A View to Remember

PLEASE NOTE: I’m taking a break from my blog for the rest of December, so this will be my last post until after Christmas. I hope you have a warm and wonderful holiday season!   I woke up a few days ago to a view so stunning I had to run outside – in my pajamas – to take a photo. This happens every so often, and my usual experience is that no matter how hard I try, or how quickly I move, I’m never [...]

By |December 7th, 2018|Columns, Holidays|0 Comments

Gifts that Can’t be Wrapped

The theme of our Toastmasters meeting this week was “Holiday Traditions—the Profound, the Silly, and Everything In Between.” Our Toastmaster shared a holiday tradition his family practices, which is to give each other gifts you can’t wrap. As soon as he mentioned this, my mind immediately envisioned large or odd-shaped gifts that are difficult to wrap. Or were, before the invention of gift bags. But that’s not the kind of gift he was talking about. He explained by telling us first of the grandma who [...]

By |November 30th, 2018|Columns, Family, Holidays|0 Comments

A Simple Gesture

A friend posted something on Facebook recently that really warmed my heart.  She had been in a coffee shop with several friends, discussing a difficult decision she had to make, and apparently got a bit teary-eyed while talking about it. A little later, a young woman stopped by their table on her way out, with a piece of coffeecake for my friend, telling her she hoped it would make her day a little better. I’m sure it did. And I’m going to try to keep [...]

By |November 23rd, 2018|Columns, Holidays, Making a Difference, Values|0 Comments

The Thanksgiving Question

“So— What are you doing for Thanksgiving?” It’s a common question at this time of year. With the mobile society we live in today, and with family members spread out across the country from each other, there are many more options than everyone gathering at Grandma’s house, which was a lot more common in days gone by. Not that it isn’t still an option. Many of our friends and neighbors have children and grandchildren, and for some of them, their house is where everyone comes [...]

By |November 17th, 2018|Columns, Family, Holidays, Values|0 Comments

A great day

I had the pleasure and privilege yesterday of working with a young woman to help her prepare for an upcoming speech contest. Her story is an inspiring one of some of the issues and obstacles she had to deal with while growing up, and of how she overcame them – as well as the insecurity and self-consciousness she felt because of them. She expressed gratitude for the people and organizations that helped her along the way, and described how they inspired and motivated her. She [...]

My kind of rain

“This is your kind of rain,” my husband said. “I’m surprised you’re not standing by the door watching it.” He was right – it was my kind of rain, even though I hadn’t realized I had a “kind of rain” of my own, or that he would recognize it as such. It was a strong but gentle rain – the steady, consistent kind that comes without any wind or lightning and thunder. The kind that comes straight down and bounces off the pavement after hitting [...]

By |November 2nd, 2018|Columns, Health and Well-being, Respect, Values|0 Comments

You’ve been here HOW long??

“A year and a half? You’ve only been here a year and a half? It seems like much longer.” I’ve heard that from several people just in the past few weeks, and I’m taking it as a compliment – even though I suppose it could be interpreted as, “It seems like we’ve been putting up with you a lot longer than that.” It’s actually been one year and seven months – if you want to be precise – since we moved to Georgia after 18 [...]

By |October 26th, 2018|Columns, Faith, Family, Toastmasters, Values, Writing|0 Comments

Time for Class

My class at the Georgia Writers Museum is tomorrow, and I’m really excited about it. I was there for a few hours this morning helping with set-up and getting things arranged. I’ve printed out all my handouts, and tonight I plan to bake some cookies so I’ll have some homemade snacks to serve. Everything else is pretty much taken care of. The class is a two-hour version of a full-day workshop that I presented a number of times in Minnesota, along with my friend and [...]

By |October 19th, 2018|Columns, Professional Speaking, Writing|0 Comments

Weathering Another Storm

I had an “emergency post” ready to pop in for my blog this week, in case I wasn’t able to write a regular one. Here’s how it would have started: “If you’re reading this, it means our power is out due to the hurricane – again.” Fortunately, I didn’t have to use it. Although we were in the path of Hurricane Michael, it didn’t hit us as hard as Irma did last year, knocking down trees and power lines, and leaving us without water or [...]

By |October 12th, 2018|Columns, Family|0 Comments

Is there power in knowledge? It’s debatable.

I wasn’t on my high school’s debate team, but I had enough friends who were that I knew how it worked. Every debate season, a complex issue would be presented, and the team members had to collect and document every bit of information they could about it. They had to learn as much as they could about both sides of the issue. When the actual debates took place, students needed to be able to argue whichever point of view they were assigned to present. It’s [...]

By |October 7th, 2018|Columns, Making a Difference, Respect|0 Comments