Appalachian Thursday–After the Storm

Mountain people are good in a crisis. Maybe it has something to do with how many grew up hardscrabble. Or if they didn’t, their parents and grandparents did. It’s not so much about being prepared in case of an emergency, it’s knowing if there isn’t an emergency now, there will be soon enough. These areContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday–After the Storm”

Appalachian Thursday–Summer’s End

Can you believe tomorrow is September? My grandmother was right when she told me time picks up speed as you age. She was right about a lot of stuff. When I was a kid, Labor Day weekend meant it was time for the annual wiener roast at Toad and Berle’s. Yes, his name was ToadContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday–Summer’s End”

The Curse of Free Time

Everyone’s busy these days. Busy. Busy. Busy. Remember free time? Remember complaining about being bored when you were a kid? A friend recently commented on Facebook that she was bored and asked for suggestions to end her boredom. I didn’t comment, but my first thought was that any time you’re bored you should just sitContinue reading “The Curse of Free Time”

When the world’s going to Hell in a hand-basket

I’m writing this in case today’s eclipse isn’t the end of the world. While hardly anyone seems to agree with anyone else about anything these days, I think there is an almost universal sense of good-grief-what’s-the-world-coming-to?? Politics, terrorism, violence of all sorts . . . there’s a great deal of ugliness out there these days.Continue reading “When the world’s going to Hell in a hand-basket”

Giving Kids HOPE (you can help!)

In addition to being an author, I do fundraising for a children’s ministry near Asheville, NC. We serve foster care youth from birth to college graduation. Currently, we’re developing an Apprenticeship Program that will provide hands-on training and work experience for older youth. This is such a critical need when it comes to breaking theContinue reading “Giving Kids HOPE (you can help!)”

Appalachian Thursday — Meeting Wendell Berry

I’ve never been what you’d call on the cutting edge when it comes to famous people and pop culture. My first concert was the WV Symphony Orchestra conducted by Henry Mancini when I was in high school. My second was Glenn Yarborough when I was in college. That time I asked to go backstage andContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday — Meeting Wendell Berry”

Appalachian Thursday – High School Dances

Okay. That was a trick. This could really be about high school anywhere, not just in Appalachia. But I grew up in  a small town squarely in the middle of Appalachia, so we’ll call that good enough for Appalachian Thursday. Plus, I just want to tell you this. I didn’t date much in high school.Continue reading “Appalachian Thursday – High School Dances”

My Favorite Kind of Stories

I don’t often write about movies. Maybe because I don’t watch that many. Two hour chunks of time are typically reserved for reading or writing. But this past weekend, my husband and I stumbled upon a movie called “About Time” and it was EXACTLY the kind of story I like best. The story was createdContinue reading “My Favorite Kind of Stories”

Appalachian Thursday — Making Ice Cream

One of our favorite summertime treats growing up on the farm was hand cranked ice cream. Of course, when you have a cow that delivers lots of creamy milk, the ingredients aren’t hard to come by. I suppose we made other flavors, but good ole vanilla is what I remember best. Dad would set theContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday — Making Ice Cream”

A Summer Interlude – Butterflies

Sometimes you need to step back from work and writing and family and just sit down along the trail to watch a puddle of butterflies peacefully pass what is–for them–a significant percentage of their lives. Then stand and startle them. And in the startling, find yourself in a cloud of beauty on a still, summerContinue reading “A Summer Interlude – Butterflies”