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    Hooray for Homegrown Humor

    I might have been ten years old when my father, an upstanding circuit court judge, handed me a gift wrapped copy of Damon Runyon’s Guys and Dolls. He had read these stories to me for years and now graced me with my own personal edition. While […]

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    A Cautionary Valentine Tale

    I’m feeling conflicted about Valentine’s Day. This could be due to its dark history—the feast of Lupercalia, when those goofy Romans sacrificed goats and dogs and then flogged women with the hides. Or, maybe my debatable history in the romance department has dampened my ardor. […]

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    “Yes,” My New Favorite Word

    Recently I noticed the ease with which I’ve been saying, “No.” “No, I can’t go to a movie because it’s January, it’s cold and dark, and for Pete’s sake, this is Minnesota. No, I’d rather eat nails than order a kale and Quinoa souffle’ No, […]

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    Surprised by My Mother’s Diary — it’s about food!

    Recently, I wrote an article based on a diary tucked under old bills and newspaper clippings in an antique secretary that stands in my living room. What I discovered beneath the yellowing newsprint was not an ordinary diary but one that covered everything related to my mother’s joy […]

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    Holiday Reminiscing Gets Real

    My brother and I have been reminiscing about past Christmas celebrations. Naturally we recalled the lovely ones first – such as our glittering, nighttime, sleigh rides behind George Tollefson’s team of Belgian mares. I can still hear the harness bells jingling as the big girls […]

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    The Happiness Recipe

    Fun with June and Sandy at With perhaps the longest personal happiness recipe in the history of The Happiness Recipe podcast, Mary’s keys to a happier life will inspire you, and her Great Big Cake recipe might remind you of something you ate at […]

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    Life After November

    The poet Robert Frost often wrote of the earth’s seasons. In his poem “November,” he described the subtle beauty of late fall. The poem also captures the mood of a quiet interlude before winter, a reflective time when we start to brace ourselves for months […]

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    Bedazzled by Book Launch Day

    Here we are on Book Launch Day, and my equine muse Noah Vail sent me a text saying he needed a cold compress for his head. Apparently his new role as my official publicist for The Promise in Plan B has sparked a headache and […]

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