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Today's Features

  • It was a tumultuous storm through which everyone on land and sea tried so desperately to take cover.

    The wind and waves blew so violently that their tiny boat rocked back and forth uncontrollably.

    Desperately, they tried to lighten the load by tossing overboard items that were no longer necessary in stormy weather.

    “Hold on!” one of the passengers cried. “The wind’s about to pick up!”

    They clutched their hands to the side of the boat, white knuckles gripping the watercraft in a desperate attempt to stay aboard.

  • Last year, I fully believed that a shopping excursion during Tennessee’s official tax-free weekend would be a plan of sheer brilliance.
    School supplies, computers and clothing­—all sans taxation?
    It seemed sublime. Turns out, it was a rather horrific experience that only the strongest of shoppers can overcome.
    Did I really need to save 9.25 percent on marker boards and glitter pencils for my home-schooled children?
    The answer is no—no I did not.

  • When I was little, my father never drove the interstate to Knoxville.
    Or, if we planned a trip to visit family for the day in Clinton, we would drive Tenn. 116 into Lake City.
    Rarely ever did we see the green dragon or the (now removed) Thacker Christmas Inn tree sign, as we were always on the other side of the dusty trail. My brother and I would cruise along in the backseat of our silver Dodge Dynasty, singing along to the latest hits on the weekly top 40 and enjoy the commentary provided by DJ Casey Kasem.

  • You turned 6 this week. Six.

    How is it possible that I have a 6-year-old?

    One minute you were snuggled deep into my arms in an itchy hospital blanket, and the next you are choosing your own bedroom paint colors.

    Then it will be braces and then college.

    But we are not even going to discuss those today.

  • JACKSBORO—Summer school students at Jacksboro Middle School planted the “Don Nance Campbell County Community Garden”—which was revealed to the community Friday.
    “It’s so good to see young people, and to see you out here and willing to be a part,” said Phyllis Clingner, who gave the program overview.
    Different vegetables—such as celery, beets, squash and tomatoes—are growing in the garden, which will be used to feed people in the community.

  •  

    There’s just something about putting in a hard day’s work that makes a man sleep better at night.

    And when you build a porch from scratch, you sleep like a baby.

    We have officially dove headfirst into home improvement projects lately, considering trips to Lowe’s with its car buggies “fun for the whole family.”

    And who knew you could cram 1x4 boards into the floorboard of a minivan?

    You learn something new every day.

    And so it began.

  •  No matter what you call her—your Mamaw, Grandma, Nana, Grammy, Mimi or Granny–she surely has the cure for what ails you. A home cooked meal. A big hug. And a good smack on the rear, if you get out of line. 

    If your mamaw is from the South, she’s likely full of folk remedies from the days when a book-learned doctor was so far away that the ill would be cured—or dead—by the time he arrived. 

  • I can remember when I was a teenager, secretly dying to be 30.
    I thought: “People would finally take me serious when I am 30.”
    Kind of like when you are in elementary school and you cannot wait to get acne—because it is a mark of age.
    Growing up, all we want to do is grow up.
    We want time to fly, years to pass, until we get to that magical age where everything comes together and life just makes sense.
    I turned 31 last weekend.
    And life still does not make any sense.

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  • Ahh, Mother’s Day. That special day reserved for the ladies who wipe noses and raise future leaders.  Who sacrifice time and energy to create an atmosphere conducive to mothering and loving little ones. Most women are adorned with flowers, sweets, lovely cards or brunch on a patio overlooking the tranquil waves of the lake.
    I got a goat.