Wednesday, May 4, 2016
     

Warmest Regards

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Some time ago, HGTV had a program showing a husband and wife team building multilevel pressure-treated decks that they said would take anyone just a weekend to do.

To the viewer’s eyes, this couple never made a wrong measurement or a bad cut. Their outcry was, “look at all the money you could save by not hiring a contractor!”

Yeah, right!

The power saws, the miter saws, the router, the work bench alone that they used must have cost over a thousand dollars in addition to the all the wood and hardware necessary for the projects.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

I’m not what they call “crafty.”

I have no interest and no talent to do any craft and am seldom tempted to take any of the classes that abound in our area.

Yet, when I covered an event at a pottery studio and saw what they call a coastal colander bowl, I signed up for a one-day class to make one.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Marilyn is a beautiful woman I’ve just gotten to know.

She isn’t beautiful on the outside. In fact, when you look at her you get the immediate impression she’s a little strange, at least when it comes to appearance. I don’t know how old she is. Somewhere upward of 62, I would guess. Most times she puts her blond hair into pigtails, then tops it with an odd hat of some sort.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

It happened nearly every day.

Somewhere in the high school where I taught, a girl was missing class. She sat in the guidance office crying her eyes out because her boyfriend had found a new love.

The counselor had set up a quiet room with soft music and a candle. She sent the girl there to desensitize and detoxify her emotional pain from the breakup. Depending upon the severity of her inability to cope, follow-up sessions in the quiet room might also have been scheduled.

When I was growing up, “coping” was spelled out in eight simple words.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

rstrack@tnonline.com

We often hear that life was better “back in the day.”

People say growing up in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s was the best when kids kept their innocence until they were well into their teenage years.

For some, though, the good old days were not so good.

Johnny, the kid next door in my old neighborhood, twitched his head back and forth whenever I talked to him.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

How could she forgive him?

How could a mother forgive the man who kidnapped her 7-year-old daughter and brutalized her in the most savage way?

Last week I shared with readers the unforgettable story of Marietta Jaeger and her daughter, Susie.

Marietta and her family lived through a year of emotional torture after little Susie Jaeger was kidnapped from her tent as she slept next to her sisters at a Montana campground.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

The Wonderful Husband and I are just over 10 years into our marriage and we seem to be reaching the expiration date of some of the items that we received as wedding gifts. I’m not sure how the toaster and the bath towels know exactly how to give out at the same time, but they are not the only traitors who seem to want out of this relationship. At any rate, I am oddly sentimental about these gifts, as all of them came from cherished family and friends and I am reluctant to part with them.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

At a recent club event I went to with friends, my friend Lisa asked me to do her a favor. It was an easy favor to do.

Lisa asked me to sit with her husband, Larry, and to keep him engaged in conversation.

She told me her husband didn’t want to come to the luncheon because it’s too hard for him to make conversation with strangers. And, to him, we are all strangers, even though we are his wife’s close friends.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

See if you can tell what’s wrong with this conversation.

“How are you?” asked John.

“I just had back surgery,” said Joe.

“Oh, well I had my hip replaced last year,” said John. “It was awful.”

“Yes,” said Joe. “My doctor told me I need to stretch and exercise each day.”

“I had to go to rehab for weeks,” said John. “I still have trouble walking up stairs.”

Saturday, January 30, 2016

I just got finished reading a short essay I liked.

Lisa Kelly wrote the essay, “The Gift of the Ordinary,”based on a small snippet of life she glimpsed when she went to visit her mother in the hospital. At 84, her mother’s heart was problematic and doctors were working to stabilize it.

What Lisa noticed was that her mother and the other seriously ill patients weren’t talking about wanting a miracle to regain their health. Instead, they expressed longing for being able to do ordinary things.