Did you remember your mother on Mother's Day? (05/14/13)
This past Sunday, May 12, was Mother's Day, and I hope all of you at least called dear old mom on the phone, or better yet, took her flowers or out to lunch or dinner
Mostly Cloudy ~
High: 88°F ~ Low: 71°F
Monday, May 20, 2013
Did you remember your mother on Mother's Day? (05/14/13)
This past Sunday, May 12, was Mother's Day, and I hope all of you at least called dear old mom on the phone, or better yet, took her flowers or out to lunch or dinner
An unexpected visitor on a rainy day (05/07/13)
I know a lot of you saw that snake photo of mine on the cover of the Courier News a couple of weeks ago. That is, by the way, a spotted king snake, although I have been calling them rock snakes for years.
The truth about the monkey blood (04/23/13)
A book review I will be doing in a few months brought up an interesting question for me, and was surprisingly hard to answer. And because all the information I was able to find on the Internet was absolutely bogus, I decided it was a question worth answering in this column.
Book Review: "The Thief," an Isaac Bell novel (04/16/13)
There are many wonderful writers out there in the genre of archeological and historical fiction, and Clive Cussler is one of the best.
Nationallyknown hero to help recognize local heroes (04/09/13)
The Northeast Arkansas Chapter of the American Red Cross will welcome a nationally known hero as part of the final event in its Every Red Cent Counts fundraising campaign.
Registering to vote gives you a voice (04/02/13)
Last summer, I was approached by my good friend George Hale to do some research on why Mississippi County was still selecting its jury pool from the registered voter list.
Understanding the celebration of Easter (03/26/13)
Holy Week has started, with Palm Sunday this past Sunday, and I hope your family's celebration is an uplifting and inspirational one.
Pancakes and lots of comments on the birds (03/19/13)
Well, if I had any doubt that people all over the country read my columns, those doubts were dispelled this week when I was deluged by emails concerning my column on the Ivory Billed Woodpecker. And the comments were all concerned with an error I made on the size of the bird in question...
Book Review: "The Cloud" (03/12/13)
A large percentage of the best authors out there were journalists first, and the author of the book I am reviewing this month is a proof of that rule.
The Great Arkansas Snipe Hunt ends (03/05/13)
This past year, a decision was very quietly made by a group of renowned scientists that put an end, officially, to a massive search effort in Arkansas.
St. Jude event is right around the corner (02/26/13)
No parent should have to lose a child, to watch that child grow sicker and weaker and know there is nothing they can do to help. But for the families of so many children stricken with one form of cancer or another, too often that is the case.
Time to support your local Red Cross (02/19/13)
March is, of course, Red Cross Month, and the folks at the local Red Cross office need your help to continue serving this community.
A little existentialism for Valentine's Day (02/12/13)
Although there are some wonderful poets currently struggling to have their work published and read in the world today, the vast majority of new poetry sounds, to me, like baby talk.
Why you should never eat broccoli for dinner (02/05/13)
I think the worst thing about January is that it comes immediately after December. I know, you are all rolling your eyes and thinking, "Duh!" to yourselves.
Kids, coyotes and losing a friend (01/29/13)
I cannot understand anyone who does not have pets. Really, I can't. A sterile house leads to a sterile life, but having a pet in the home, even if the result is a little bit of mess, is an infusion of love.
Gardening season is upon us again (01/22/13)
Although the whole world is brown and dead, and it is still very chilly outside, my winter vegetables are producing nicely right now, and the planting dates for early spring veggies are close at hand.
Book Review: "Someday is Not a Plan" (01/15/13)
Personal finance can be a difficult thing for anybody to understand, especially young people just starting out in a new career.
Fun with the grandkids in 2013 (01/08/13)
There is nothing like hitting the ground running at the start of the New Year, and that seems to be the way this year is starting out here at the Lendennie homestead.
Book Review: "The Man in the Iron Mask" (12/18/12)
When I was trying to decide what book to review during the holidays, I decided classic was the way to go.
Christmas dinner has not changed much over the centuries (12/11/12)
When we think of an old English Christmas dinner, many of us immediately refer back to that eaten at the table of Bob Cratchit in the Charles Dickens' classic, "A Christmas Carol," which ended with Tiny Tim's "God bless us every one."
A rose by any other name ... (12/04/12)
I have never been shy to admit to myself or anybody else that I set up a Facebook account specifically to play games. Since doing that a number of years ago, I have been able to stay in close contact with family members and former classmates with whom I had completely lost contact.
Look for changes in the workplace of the future (11/27/12)
Late last month Greg Kratz, a reporter and columnist at the Deseret News in Salt Lake City wrote a piece on a survey conducted by LinkedIn, a professional networking group. The survey asked more than 7,000 respondents to list 10 tools or practices in the workplace that likely would be replaced or would simply not be done by 2017.
Pilgrim or Puritan -- what's in a name? (11/20/12)
In a few days we will all observe the national holiday totally devoted to stuffing ourselves with turkey, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie and other foods the Native American's introduced to the first settlers of this country.
Book review: The perfect gifts for the readers on your list (11/13/12)
The holidays are upon us, and most of us are making our list, checking it twice, and trying to think of the perfect gift for those very special people in our lives.
Weather, voting and other fall tidbits (11/06/12)
Today is Election Day. If you have not voted yet, you have until 7:30 p.m. to do so. This is one of the greatest of our rights as American citizens, and our free and open election process is the one single thing that makes our nation unique among nations.
Catholic Church names the first Native American Saint (10/30/12)
I have been working for some time on research for a novel on the Native Americans of the Mississippian period, specifically regarding their contact with the treasure hunter Hernando Desoto.
Book reviews and other writing projects (10/23/12)
This is one of those weeks when I just can't find enough hours or energy to finish every project that seems to just spring to life around me. Fast approaching is something to which I have been looking forward since I heard about it -- the National Novel Writing Month...
Clearing up the Medicare Advantage question (10/16/12)
I was deeply concerned, as were many of you I am sure, while listening to the first Presidential Candidate Debate a couple of weeks ago, when I kept hearing it repeated again and again that Medicare Advantage was going to end when the Affordable Health Care Act (aka Obamacare) is fully enacted.
Book review: A little spooky fun with the kids. (10/09/12)
One of the reasons I started doing book reviews was to maybe encourage folks to read a book every now and then. I thought I would present some affordable and good quality options, as well as warning everyone away from the books I feel are a waste of time and money.
Rabies is still a threat in Arkansas (10/02/12)
As the days get cooler and shorter, many of the furry critters so common in a rural community are out in force, trying to store up food and fat for the coming winter.
Some sure signs of the changing seasons (09/25/12)
Fall, my favorite time of year, has arrived, and in the past couple of weeks that has become very apparent. The first thing I began to notice was the fact that the smaller trees in the yard were looking a little threadbare.
Book Review: "New York to Dallas" (09/18/12)
In the world of romance novels, one of the best-known authors is Nora Roberts. And perhaps some of the best novels written by Roberts are written under her alternate pen name, J.D. Robb.
Vivid memories of a very bad day (09/11/12)
There are a few days you will remember in great detail for the rest of your life.
Musings on a rainy Saturday (09/04/12)
I have to tell you, I have waited a long, hot summer to be able to use this title. It took a hurricane to bring us a couple of inches of rainfall.
Give your child the world through books (08/28/12)
Even as a child, I was a voracious reader. Oh, of course, my parents read to all of us at bedtime when we were little, but of the three of us, I am the only one who began at about the age of 8 spending all of my free time off in some corner with my nose stuck in a book.
Book Review: "War" by Sebastian Junger (08/21/12)
If the reality of war is just a little too much for you, you should not read this book. For everyone who has someone in harm's way, though, I think this is a must-read.
Peaches, roses and the dreaded Japanese beetle (08/14/12)
I really thought this would be my first year to enjoy delicious, home-grown peaches from my own tree. Boy, was I wrong.
A little digging produces answers and movement toward change (08/07/12)
In my column of May 1, I lamented the fact that Mississippi County had not implemented Arkansas Act 1404, which changes the jury pool from those people who register to vote, as it stands now, to those people with driver's licenses and state identification cards.
Trying to garden in a rainless sauna (07/24/12)
For the first 20 or so years I lived here, the summers were more or less predictable. I knew when to plant early veggies such as peas, how far into the winter I could expect to harvest tomatoes, and that onions would overwinter and be large and sweet in the spring if you planted them in the early fall.
Book Review: "Silent Music" by Adam Wyeth (07/17/12)
Once upon a time, you could distinguish a learned man from his contemporaries because he most likely carried a book of poetry with him.
"From one end of this continent to the other ..." (07/03/12)
"I believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other ..."
The lazy days of summer have arrived (06/26/12)
This summer has already become so full of activities it is hard to get them all scheduled. But at the same time, life in general has slowed to a crawl, especially in the heat of the day.
The worst book I have ever read (06/19/12)
I have a hard and fast rule are far as books are concerned, and that is if I buy it, I read it. All of it, no matter how bad it is. And I have read some stinkers. But this book I am about to review is absolutely the worst book I have ever read in my life.
Schools should teach about outstanding women (06/12/12)
I sat down to watch a movie a few days ago, one I had seen listed but which was airing too late for me to watch. So I set the DVR, and as soon as I had a chance, I sat down to enjoy it with great anticipation.
Do you know the birds in your yard? (06/05/12)
I have had a couple of calls in the past few weeks about birds people have seen in their yards, so I thought I might pass on some information about the most common (and some not so common) birds you might see at your feeder or birdbath here in this part of Arkansas.
Herbs as part of your kitchen garden (05/29/12)
Although I have been gardening most of my life, I only recently (the last 10 years or so) started growing herbs. The reason was simple: in my family, you cooked what the men wanted to eat.
Writing about absolutely nothing (05/22/12)
What is the best way to make it rain? Put off writing a column due on Sunday night until Sunday afternoon. Then you get a doozy, with strobe lightning and sound effects and the whole package. And, of course, no power.
Not seeing it does not mean it is not so (05/15/12)
A number of years ago, my ex-husband's mother died. This in itself was not unusual, although she was fairly young, in her early 60s. What was notable was that it was only two days before she passed, after she had been in a coma for weeks, when she was finally diagnosed with something she knew she had for most of her life: Lupus.
Book Review: "The Affair" (05/08/12)
Sometimes going back to the very beginning is the best way to move forward, and this latest paperback by Lee Child does that very thing times two.
Elections should be more than an inconvenience (05/01/12)
I was disappointed Saturday to see the very small number of Mississippi County residents who came out to meet and greet our candidates for the upcoming elections for the offices of state and U.S. representative, among others.
A few random springtime musings (04/24/12)
Well, the prom was all the rage on Facebook this weekend. So I got to see the children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews of all my Facebook friends as they headed out to prom this weekend.
Book review: "Escape from Botany Bay" (04/17/12)
Did you ever pick up a book almost as an after-thought and find it is one of the best reading experiences you have ever had? This was the case for me with a children's non-fiction work I stumbled across by accident, while researching something else.
The continuing search for Amelia Earhart (04/10/12)
On May 20, 1937, America's darling, Amelia Earhart, began what was to be her last monumental feat in a lifetime of such achievements.
It's not your grandmother's Red Cross (04/03/12)
Are ya bored? Well, are ya? Then have I got just the thing for you, to rid yourself of those springtime doldrums and let you do something important for your community.
Space: It is still the final frontier (03/27/12)
For those of us who are passionate or even just sort of interested in outer space, science, science fiction and what new wonders and discoveries await us in the future, this has been an extraordinary month.
Book Review: "Beyond 2012 The Omega Point" (03/20/12)
There are some authors out there who just write good books, and Whitley Strieber, author of "Beyond 2012 The Omega Point" is one of them.
Grandma, where do U.S. presidents come from? (03/13/12)
I think it would be fair to say that I am a political junky and a history geek. This past three months or so, however, have been a little more entertaining than most.
"When the world and I were young ..." (03/06/12)
For the last couple of years before my dad died at the age of 83, he would say, usually out of the blue, "I don't have any friends anymore. They all died!"
By the light of the silvery moon (02/28/12)
Since man first appeared on Earth, we have been mesmerized by and obsessed about the moon. Oh, the sun was worshipped as a greater "god" by the ancients, but the moon has always held a special place in our hearts for many different reasons.
Taking a stab at book reviews (02/21/12)
One of the things I enjoyed most but did not have many opportunities to do as a reporter with the Courier News was the book reviews.
St. Jude: The absolute gift of love (02/14/12)
Once upon a time in America, there was a young, struggling actor whose wife had a baby. The actor did not have enough money to pay the hospital to bring his wife and baby home, so being a devout Catholic, he went to church and prayed to St. Jude Thaddeus for guidance.
Blytheville loses a great animal rights crusader (02/07/12)
Blytheville has a number of wonderful nonprofit and community service organizations, and all of them depend on their dedicated volunteers to do the good work of this area. This week, we lost one of the best.
PIPA and SOPA: What all the fuss was about (01/31/12)
Toward the end of 2011, with millions of people still unemployed or underemployed, the threat of rising taxes being faced by middle and lower middle income families, and skyrocketing costs on everything from food to medicines to gasoline, our elected officials in Washington used their last weeks before the holiday break to put together two pieces of legislation and try to get them pushed through.
A couple of mixed-bag weeks (01/24/12)
The last couple of weeks have been a mixed bag of extremely good and extremely bad things, with a few oddities scattered in just for good measure.
Time to make some turkey soup (01/17/12)
Everybody always talks about depression rates climbing during the holidays. However, it is this time of the year when I find myself, at times, literally bored out of my mind.
A question from the grandkids (01/10/12)
As I was riding down the road with my grandkids earlier this week, one of them asked me a really interesting question. Actually, the 4-year-old asked the 8-year-old, who answered, and then an argument ensued which Grandma had to settle.
Vietnam veterans still fighting the effects of herbicides (01/03/12)
Those of you who attended the Mississippi County Veterans Day ceremony on Nov. 11 at the county courthouse in Blytheville heard a very informative and well presented talk by Mike Freligh on the plight of our nation's service men and women.
Time to make those New Year's resolutions (12/28/11)
Well, here we are, at the beginning of another year, at least according to the Roman calendar. Most ancient civilizations use the winter solstice (northern hemisphere)/summer solstice (southern hemisphere) on Dec. 21 as the beginning of their year, including the ancient Mayans, but that is a topic for another column...
Here we come a-caroling (12/20/11)
I truly hope all of you are having a great Christmas season, and of course that Santa brings you everything on your list.
Remember the children at Christmas (12/13/11)
Steve and I are not big partiers. As a matter of fact, we don't stay up until midnight on Dec. 31; we watch fireworks from our own back yard on July 4; and one of our biggest joys is passing out candy on our own porch on Halloween, just us and maybe a grandkid or two.
Take time to remember the fallen (12/06/11)
Dec. 7 marks a very solemn anniversary in the history of our country, and I think it would be appropriate for all of us to pause in our shopping, baking and decorating activities for just a few minutes in remembrance.
German shepherds, healthy grandkids and other blessings (11/30/11)
I hope you and yours had a blessed Thanksgiving, and that you were able to spend at least a part of it with family and friends.
The wind made me do it (11/15/11)
I had intended to do something on part of the wonderful address presented at the Mississippi County Veterans Day Ceremony at the courthouse Friday, but that was going to involve some research.
Butterflies are back ... and other things (11/08/11)
Over the past few weeks I have enjoyed my twice daily walks around our yard more than usual because of the reappearance en masse of an old favorite.
Nosy neighbors mean a safe neighborhood (11/01/11)
I received an email from a reader this week concerning the dog issue in Blytheville. So I did a little checking and have some information to pass along. However, one issue temporarily solved does not settle the whole problem.
Safety is important during the fall months (10/25/11)
All of you who read my columns know that this time of year, with the temperatures cooling and the garden finally producing, all the flowers blooming, the cotton pickers working in the fields, and the holidays about to start, is my very favorite time of year.
Hummingbirds: Little warriors of the air (10/18/11)
Those of us who plant a lot of flowers for the purpose of sitting outside and enjoying the brilliant colors and the wonderful scents usually plant at least one good big patch of flowers within sight of our favorite lawn chair or porch swing that will attract hummingbirds.
The Boo Pooh: A sure sign the holidays have arrived (10/11/11)
Well, we did not make it to the first of October, not even close. One day about two weeks into the month of September, I walked out the back door -- and there it was. Laying on the porch swing. The Boo Pooh.
United Way: more than just a funding agency (10/04/11)
As most of you probably know by now, the United Way of Greater Blytheville-hosted 31rst Annual Championship Chili Cookoff takes place Saturday, Oct. 15.
Another worthy cause in need of help (09/27/11)
Throughout the next few months I am probably going to be passing along information about various local organizations which do great work in our community and that need the help of the community to continue those efforts.
Thank your lucky stars and open your wallets (09/20/11)
We are so lucky as a community to still have a local chapter of the American Red Cross.
A little excitement on a Friday night (09/13/11)
When you live in the country, and I have lived in the country most of my life, things go on pretty well on an even keel most days.
Significant bits and pieces (09/06/11)
Today is the day after Labor Day, and since grandmas deserve to have some time off for the holiday as well, I did not do any research and am not writing a long-winded column about bugs or patriots or any other such thing.
These are a few of my favorite, uh ... things (08/30/11)
Yes, there is a photo of a very ugly bug inserted into this column, and I am going to explain that fact in just a moment.
Participation is the key to a successful county fair (08/23/11)
While you are reading this on Tuesday, I am actually writing it on Sunday, one day before I will find out what, if anything, I will have to enter in the exhibits at this year's Mississippi County Fair.
Not all elected officials were meant to be paid (08/16/11)
Our founding fathers, back in the mid-1700s, were an interesting and entirely dedicated group of fellows. They were a mishmash of societal groups, from cobblers and handymen to lawyers, doctors, pastors and bankers.
Blessings can come in all sizes (08/09/11)
When you really think about it, everything we have, everything we experience, everything that exists around us is a blessing.
Local horse shows provide good family entertainment (08/01/11)
This column falls under the category "For those who say there is nothing for kids to do in Blytheville." That statement is, of course, about as false as it can be.
Everybody deserves to have a forum (07/26/11)
There has been so much happening this week, it was really hard to pick one topic for a column. After looking at all the things about which I was receiving emails and other communications, I decided to come out in defense of Fox News Network.
Vacation Bible School more than just summer fun (07/18/11)
The grandkids were here this weekend -- Leah, Scott and Amy -- to attend vacation Bible school at the First Christian (Disciples of Christ) Church. And I think it is safe to say a great time was had by all.
It's time we ratified the Equal Rights Amendment (07/11/11)
You are a woman of a certain age, and you have worked at the same job for most of your adult life. You have a great health plan, and a good retirement plan, and only a few years to go before you can retire on that plan.
Everything changes, including food pyramid (07/07/11)
I hope everyone enjoyed their Independence Day. We certainly did. For those of you who don't know, July 4 is our anniversary. That means no matter where we are on our anniversary, they put on a fireworks display in our honor. This year we had the grandkids to celebrate with us. We swam in the pool, had watergun fights in the yard, shot off fireworks (we live out in the county), and of course barbecued as did, I am sure, most of you...
The information is there, you just have to read it (06/27/11)
For the vast majority of you who read this column each week, it may come as a surprise that, along with four of my colleagues, I was part of an online popularity contest run by the Courier News on its website last week.
Father's Day was a time for reflection (06/21/11)
Though you are reading this column on Tuesday, I am writing it on Sunday, Father's Day. In our household, the day was one more of reflection than celebration, as both of our fathers have passed from this life.
Today we honor our nation's flag (06/14/11)
Today is Flag Day, June 14, a day set aside to honor the symbol of our nation. As with many aspects of American history, there is a good deal of speculation as to the exact origins.
Listen my children and you shall hear (06/06/11)
OK, so Henry Wadsworth Longfellow took a great deal of poetic license when writing that famous poem we all had to memorize in grade school about the ride of Revolutionary War hero Paul Revere.
Lions and tigers and ... beer (06/01/11)
Boy, if there ever was a week where it would have been appropriate to use the old exclamation from the Wizard of Oz, "Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!" this would have been the one.
Birds, bugs and the end of days (05/23/11)
The first sure sign that we are well into the spring season around our house is the arrival of baby birds of all types, colors and sizes.
Something good, something bad and something bittersweet (05/16/11)
This has been a week (and a half) of extremes for us. Ups and downs are part of life, but it seems this week we lost our center altogether. Strange how that happens, and when it does, it comes in bunches.
It's only farmland, right? (05/09/11)
Those of us along the mid-Mississippi River valley are still watching the big muddy, even as its crest passes this week. It has been near or possibly even at record-high levels.
Ivey is a former staff writer of the Courier News.