A gentle smile and a friendly "My, me! Come see me!" Eyes that invited you to sit a spell. A soul lit from within that shared its glow with all who came into contact with it. A heart as big as all outdoors. A love of people that drew no distinction between family or friend. A faith that never waivered or doubted.
A wife. A sister. An aunt. A mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.
Words fail to adequately describe my mother, Roberta Davis.
When it's a baby, all of the "firsts" are exciting. There's the first smile, the first word, the first tooth, the first step.
It's a world of unfolding miracles. Each day is surpassed only by the one yet to come.
Then there is the other side of the picture â€” the rite of passage no one chooses â€” the one that brings the firsts you never wanted.
There's the first birthday without the one who was loved most; the first Father's Day; the first Thanksgiving; the first Christmas; the first Easter; and â€” the hardest of all â€” the first anniversary of the person's death.
Have you ever seen a belt line? They donâ€™t exist anymore, but when I was kid, our schoolâ€™s FFA chapter made the belt line part of its initiation process. Freshmen who wanted to join FFA had to learn the creed and recite it before being accepted into the chapter. Those who failed to learn the creed had a choice: Run the belt line, or wash out.
It's all about kindness.
That's at the very heart of my favorite national observance: Be Kind to Animals Week.
First off, from my point of view, the objective of this event should be that there never should be any need to have such a focus. It's a common-sense, common-decency thing.
Being kind to all of God's creatures should be second nature. Every day. Every minute of every day. On and on, ad infinitum.
Unfortunately, this utopia-like existence for those without speech isn't a reality, but many strides have been made in the movement.
â€śHow would you know? Youâ€™re too young!â€ť Just one of the many responses todayâ€™s youth get when we try to voice our opinion on an issue. It seems a growing amount of younger American citizens are putting the â€śtwo centsâ€ť into the debates happening around our country.
As a fellow American youth, I can vouch for the claim that todayâ€™s generation is very opinionated. However, there are many times when adults or even older teens reject our input because of our age.
Curiosity led me to conduct a survey within my high school. The first question was, â€śDo you know what liberal and conservative are?â€ť
One of the wonderful things about the Internet is the â€świld westâ€ť atmosphere it continues to enjoy. By that I mean this electronic frontier is a place where anyone can have an idea, present it â€“ and to quote Capt. Jean-Luc Picard â€“ â€śmake it so.â€ť
Not only that, depending on the complexity of the idea and the talent, or willingness to learn how to do it, that idea can come to fruition literally in an instant or over an extended period of time.
Have you been paying attention to local and Arkansas state politics? The Arkansas Republican controlled House and Senate are in the process of reducing income taxes for anyone making an adjusted income of $44,000 or more per year. As if that is not bad enough, they are reducing the capital gain taxes for their wealthy friends. So much for supporting Arkansas, middle class and poor residents. Arkansas Republicans campaigned promising to reduce taxes. Truth be told, that is exactly what they are doing for some.
I have one problem to deal with while writing my column today: I need lots more space - I need an entire page. Whew!
As a Republican, I am veritably jumping up and down in place, trying to encourage, urge, pester, and otherwise goad our â€śfirst Republican majority in 138 yearsâ€ť to follow through with the mission with which we entrusted them, and not be hornswoggled into caving to pressures from the establishment. They have done a good job with vital new laws to protect â€ślife, liberty, and the pursuit of happinessâ€ť.
By Lynda Hollenbeck
When Ed and I married, I had never been fishing. Not once.
That sounds weird to a lot of people, but it never bothered me.
Plainly speaking, I wasn't interested.
My brother-in-law, George, who's obsessed with the sport, would consider this grounds for commitment to a rubber room. But George, the psychologist/author, long ago elevated fishing to a religious experience. He has fished in many other lands, including a recent trip to Argentina, after which I teased him about trying to catch fish that speak with a Spanish accent.
Last year was my 30th high school reunion. I was not able to attend because of work, but about half of my graduating class of 22 showed up. A friend sent a photo of my classmates, and it was the first time I had seen most of them since graduation night in 1982.