Columns

The life of farm and letters

My heart sank when trucks from American Tree lined up before our house at 8:30 a.m. It wasn’t easy letting go my last two lavender fields, about 500 shrubs in a lovely flurry of mid-October bloom. “The landscapers are here!” I informed my coffee hound in the kitchen....

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Learning to face your fears

Once we hit a certain age, I think we all start to examine our lives and realize we might be at the top of the hill and there’s nowhere but down from here. I’m hoping to take a leisurely, smooth roll down from this point. At the same time, I find myself wanting to...

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Sunday morning musings

My husband slipped under the covers. “I hope the rain doesn’t wash away the seed I’ve planted.” Immersed in All Creatures Great and Small by the late James Herriot, I managed “me too,” and turned the page. An hour later, full of Herriot’s humor and the vet’s passion...

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A tribute to Gino and Marlene Mallia

Last January, I talked with Gino Mallia, husband of Marlene Mallia, President of the Lakeville Cemetery Auxiliary Society. “I don’t know if you can afford the dues,” he said. “How much are they?” “Two dollars.” I would’ve paid a higher price just to enter Milmine...

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A bitter pill to swallow

Did I or didn’t I? This was one of the questions I asked myself a few times a couple weeks ago sitting at my desk. Did I take my pills? I did, didn’t I? Or was that yesterday I am thinking of? Oh my gosh! Am I getting old or what? Or am I just so distracted that I...

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To love an onion

I was unaware Robert Farrar Capon, the late Episcopal priest and author, published The Supper of the Lamb in 1967. Furthermore, I knew nothing of Capon’s “culinary reflection” when I began housekeeping in 1970 with The Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook. I built my...

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Being kind to one another

Being kind to others has been in the forefront of the media lately due to an a recent situation in which Ellen DeGeneres and George W. Bush were sitting next to each other watching a football game. She said she received a lot of backlash from viewers and fans who were...

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Reunions a sign of hope

My mother and father were opposites: she the eldest of eight children, he the youngest of nine. Assigned to cooking family meals at age eleven, Mom cut her teeth on the cookstove. Dad grew into manhood with every bite of food handed to him. Domestic to the bone, Mom...

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Filling the dash of living

There’s nothing like visiting with old friends from your childhood that can make you wonder how time passed so quickly. Having the sad misfortune of having to say a way too early goodbye to a childhood friend has brought back so many memories. Susie was a very...

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Who’s Sweet Annie?

Years ago on a fair fall day, my sister-in-law and I wandered through a craft show in Grand Rapids with her first baby. Throughout the park, dappled light shone on vendors’ tents under old oaks and maples. The spirit of geniality triggered “nothing could be finer than...

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