• Life lessons in the mud

    Although I personally don’t get the fascination with running races through mud, these days lots of people do.

    A few years ago, my two daughters did a mud race together. My oldest daughter, Alison, said the obstacles freaked her out and she doesn’t like climbing cargo nets and was leery of leaping over fire. 

  • Keepin' mama happy

    Maybe you’ve heard the Southern saying, “If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”

    It’s one of my favorite sayings. First of all, I like saying ain’t. (It makes me happy.) 

    Second, since I truly want others to be happy, it’s good to know the way to achieve that is to make myself happy first. For the good of mankind, it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make.

  • Grace Notes 6/7/14: The problem with dating your phone

    “I love texting! It’s so much more impersonal than talking face to face.” 

    — A text from me to my friend Tara


    In the movie “Her,” a man in Los Angeles dates his smartphone.

    It’s not as far-fetched as it sounds.

  • Judi's Journal 6/7/14: Fifty years after Unisphere

    I have a photograph. It’s an old black and white taken by a Kodak instamatic camera. I remember the outfit I was wearing. It was a madras plaid blouse woven in burgundy and navy hues, and I have on a pair of navy Bermuda shorts. My mother had a blouse just like it; it was cool to dress alike back then. I am standing in front of some whimsical animals made out of car parts. I was 17 years old, and it was my idea to come to this place. It was 50 years ago and I was at the New York World’s Fair at the General Motors Pavilion.

  • Raising mine Ebenezer

    Unlike the ancient Israelites, I’m not in the habit of naming rocks. Not being judgmental, just never thought to do so.

    Apparently, the Philistines were set to slaughter the Israelites. Full-on assault, take no prisoners.

    If you recall from the story of David and Goliath, the Philistines were huge, mean and scary. 

    So, when the Israelites heard about the upcoming attack, they went to their leader, Samuel, and begged him to ask God to save them.

  • Thanks all around for efforts of volunteers

    After seven years of writing columns for the Chronicle about the Withlacoochee State Trail, my columns will now be located in the Excursions section of the paper and will normally run on the second Sunday of each month. I hope you will continue to read them and let me hear from you about the trail.

  • Stuff that looks like Jesus

    Somewhere in Citrus County, Jesus is in a tree.

    Shortly before Easter, a woman called the newsroom and left me a message about a tree in her yard and how she can see Jesus in it.

    I had taken the week after Easter off, and by the time I returned to work I had lost the woman’s number and forgot about Jesus in her tree.

  • Reveling in true colors

    We live in a world that is a true kaleidoscope of colors. Vivid hues surround creation, in the landscape, animals and in our natural surroundings. The color of the sky at sunset, the beauty of our fields here in Florida, covered by magenta Phlox, the lush, verdant horse pastures and the pink, purple and white flowering crepe myrtles transform our environment into one that is a pure delight of color.

  • Relates well with others

    Amy Lou Kingery, public relations coordinator of Seven Rivers Regional Medical Center, has been named Public Relations Professional of the Year by the Nature Coast Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association.

    In her own words, she is the storyteller of the organization. 

  • Learning the art of having a good day

    Yesterday when I was buying fish for dinner, Harry the seafood guy looked at me and said, “Today has been a good day.”

    He didn’t say why, and I suppose I should’ve asked him.

    Even so, as I drove home with my two salmon steaks and the solitary fresh, humungously jumbo shrimp with its head still on that Harry tossed in as a freebie, Harry’s words echoed in my thoughts.

    Today has been a good day.