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Tommy Hunter’s Ducks

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On Christmas Day, 1959, my brother Craig and I found 410-gauge shotguns under the tree, and we wasted no time taking our first hunting expedition through the field behind our house toward Tierra Blanca Creek. We were looking for jackrabbits, but when we found none, we decided to try our luck with ducks. If you’ve […]

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Hands Down, Biscuits and Gravy

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Had dinner last night at the Bellah Building on the corner of 15th Street and 5th Avenue in Canyon, so named because Bellah 1927 is written on a large, cement block just below the roof line. R. A. Bellah built the structure when my dad (his grandson) was four years old. He constructed it for […]

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Europe on a Budget

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“You can travel in Europe for the same amount, or even cheaper, than in the U.S.” So say Jerry and Nonette (Non) Robinson, a retired Canyon couple who have learned to do Europe on a budget. Both former teachers (Jerry was also a coach), the Robinsons’ fascination with Europe began in the late 80s when […]

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You Can’t Make Old Friends

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In 2013, country music legends Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton released what, in their minds, would be the last of their many hit duets. It was named, appropriately, “You Can’t Make Old Friends.”  Written by Ryan Hanna King, Caitlyn Smith and Don Schlitz (the latter wrote “The Gambler”), the piece spoke movingly of the kind […]

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My Green and Yellow Tractor

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So a guy stopped by who wanted to mow my lawn. Asked $75 for it. I told him “no, thanks.” “Is that too much?” was his question. How do I tell him? That I’ve waited all my life to drive a John Deere (even a miniature one). That work doesn’t feel like work when it’s […]

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Not Another Little Book on Christianity

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A friend wanted to know if I was writing a Christian book on retirement. “No,” was my first answer; then, “well, sort of.” I did not set out to write a theology of retirement. That is, I didn’t scour the Bible to see what the Scriptures said about the concept (the word isn’t used at […]

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Shoe Strings and Other Things

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A shoe string, an old phone charger cord and a bungee cord—that’s what it took to repair the shredded splash shield (protects the engine from underneath) on my Toyota Camry. Don’t laugh. It got us from Flagstaff, Arizona to the dealership in Reno, Nevada. Improvising, according to Webster, is “producing or making something from whatever […]

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Fairy Dust

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Tonight will be the last of our vacation, and I have some thoughts on the subject. Vacations, that is. As a child, we took one every summer, usually staying in a rustic cabin or camping out somewhere in the mountains of New Mexico or Colorado. We fished, hiked, roasted marshmallows and built things—forts in the […]

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John Wayne and Reader Response

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In today’s blog, I want to talk about John Wayne. But first, this: Is it possible for a reader to understand your writing better than you do? Apparently so. Read Margie Netherton’s Facebook response to my last blog (Feeling Thankful). She nailed it—better than I could. It’s what I enjoy most about reader feedback. Every […]

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Feeling Thankful

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For all my first readers and editors who made the book what it is. For the designers (both cover and inside pages) who created a wrapping that complemented my words. For those who bought the book during these first days and then shared it with friends on social media. Can’t say it enough—thank you, thank […]