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Old and New Views

“How do you come up with things to write about week after week? Where do you go to find your ideas?” Those are questions people often asked when I was writing my newspaper column, and my answer was always the same. It still is, even after the newspaper column morphed into a weekly blog: I never go looking for ideas. I just keep my radar turned on at all times, so I stay open to things I see and hear in the world around me. [...]

By |July 18th, 2020|Columns, Toastmasters, Travel, Writing|0 Comments

Zooming Around the World

I know my blog usually comes out on Friday, but it was a long day – starting with an early-morning meeting in Minnesota, followed by a late-morning meeting in Kampala, the capital of Uganda, and an evening meeting in Lima, Peru, my first-ever visit to South America. That meeting lasted until about 10:30, and by that time I was ready for bed. I felt like I had a good case of jet lag, although I never once set foot outside of my house. Not even [...]

By |July 12th, 2020|Columns, Toastmasters, Travel|0 Comments

A celebration of friendship

“It’s amazing, after not connecting, in some cases for 20+ years, how much has changed. But in some ways, it’s stayed the same. I guess that’s friendship.” That was a statement in an email from one of my “old college buds” after we had a reunion via Zoom a few nights ago. I couldn’t have said it better myself. We were a group of friends who met in college, and stayed close even after graduating within a few years of each other in the  early- to [...]

By |May 22nd, 2020|Columns, Family, Holidays, Travel, Values|2 Comments

Old Friends, New View

I had a visit this week from a friend who lives in Canada and whom I haven’t seen in more than three years. Next week I will be visiting her in Thunder Bay where she lives. Also, if our schedules work out, next week I will also be visiting with some old friends from college. We stayed close after we all graduated, but over the years, when jobs, moves, families, and other circumstances took us in different directions – literally and figuratively – we gradually [...]

By |May 15th, 2020|Columns, Family, Travel|0 Comments

Back at Home

I’m back. And I appreciate the thoughts, prayers, and support from those who read my blog and knew nothing except that I was going out of town unexpectedly, and would not be posting any blogs for a few weeks. The suddenness of our leaving town was due to a medical emergency with my mother-in-law, who was in and out of the hospital – and back in again – in the time we were there with her. That trip led directly into another one that we [...]

By |June 9th, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel, Values|0 Comments

Tears and Prayers for Notre Dame

My first-ever trip abroad was with a tour group to Paris in 2005. We had a full and glorious itinerary, visiting the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Monet’s Garden, Sacre Coeur, and other famous and not-so-famous-but-still-wonderful sites. Sadly, Notre Dame was not among them. It was on our original itinerary, but the day we left the States for Paris was the day Pope John Paul II died. In the following days and weeks, Catholic churches around the world – including Notre Dame, of course – [...]

By |April 20th, 2019|Columns, Faith, Holidays, Travel|0 Comments

Coming home

Note from Betty: Sometimes, as I'm writing my blog, I know what I want to say but the words just won't cooperate. That's what happened last week, and by the time I got the words right it was almost time for this week's blog, so I just waited till today to post it. My apologies to those who were wondering why there was no blog post last week! “Gee, but it’s great to be back home.” That’s the opening line of a Simon and Garfunkel song [...]

By |March 15th, 2019|Columns, Making a Difference, Travel, Uganda, Values|0 Comments

A cold reception and a warm welcome

I rarely catch colds – maybe once every few years or so. So naturally, I came down with one a week before we were scheduled go visit our new granddaughter. I blame my son for jinxing me. "Be sure you're getting enough Vitamin C," he said in a phone conversation a few weeks earlier. "You don't want to get sick right before you come to see the baby." What made him even think of this was the fact that his brother-in-law had been planning to visit [...]

By |March 1st, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel|0 Comments

Warm Hearts Melt Winter’s Chill

When my husband retired and we moved to Georgia – after 40 years in the Chicago area and 18 years in Minnesota, with a few other locations in between – we often said that we’d go back to visit family and friends up north, but never in the winter. That was before our son and daughter-in-law had a baby – our first grandchild – in the middle of January, in Minnesota. We were only joking, of course – well, half-joking – when we talked about [...]

By |February 22nd, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel, Values|0 Comments

Celebrating and saying prayers

“We’re going to be a little late getting there,” Richard said as we climbed into his car and left the hotel. It was Sunday morning, and we were on our way to 8:00 Mass at the Angal Parish church in the West Nile region of Uganda. I hate arriving late anywhere, especially places like church. It popped into my head briefly that perhaps we could sneak in quietly and sit, unnoticed, in a back pew, although I knew that wasn’t very likely. For one thing, [...]