Category: Blog

Just when Darcy Barry should have been enjoying her senior year of high school and looking forward to future adventures, life threw her a fast-pitch curveball.

On Dec. 23, 1981, she was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis, a condition that causes tumors to form in the brain, spinal cord and nerves.

Step by step, Darcy has gone on to live a full, beautiful ... Read More


When my son started bringing home information about his sixth-grade graduation, I thought it was cute. There would be a ceremony and a class party and even some donated prizes.

Then I found out some of the parents were giving their children gifts to celebrate the milestone.

I am all for using any excuse possible to celebrate life with ice cream, but ... Read More


I’m a pretty outgoing person. There are certainly things that heighten my anxiety, but talking to strangers isn’t one of them.

I have to remember that just because my comfort zone covers a four ZIP code-area, not everyone is wired the same way. For some people, making eye contact and sending out a genuine smile is enough to get those tummy ... Read More


Twenty-one years ago, I met a woman with a beautiful face and an even more beautiful spirit.

Her name was Kelly Roarke and she was Miss Rhode Island 1997. I was Miss Wisconsin at the time and we became friends on the stage of the Miss America pageant.

I haven’t heard from Kelly in years. I get to see updates on Facebook, ... Read More


Saul and I were young parents when the circus came to town. Only two of our three children had been born, and with both of them under the age of 5, it felt like we were living in a circus. Or at the very least, a zoo.

We hiked the steps to our seats in the upper reaches of the ... Read More


My dog is lying upside down right now on an oversized chair in my home office. It’s ridiculous to look over and see this 70-pound goldendoodle beast all sprawled out like she owns the place.
She does this almost every morning, and it always makes me smile. I never get tired of my constant companion.

There is something about a dog ... Read More


There is a woman in my town who does a lot of good. I mean A LOT. She and her husband have been blessed with a successful local business, and they are constantly pouring into the community. The thing is, they do it so quietly, unless you’re really paying attention and perhaps digging a little, you’d never know the identities ... Read More


I packed a bag lunch for my second grader this morning. Actually, he packed it for himself, but I stood guard making sure there was something other than sugar in his noontime meal. The last thing that kid needs right now is sugar. Ben is pumped so full of end-of-the-year adrenaline that I say a little prayer for his teacher ... Read More


Danette Jensen lives in Goodridge, Minn., about 70 miles from the Canadian border. She and her husband run DJ’s K9 Country, a boarding facility with more than 20 kennels and a large training room.

I guess you could say Danette is dog crazy. She is certainly an expert in the field. She has a radio show and people call in with ... Read More


I have yet to meet someone who says, “Nope. I’m not a kind person and I have no intention of changing.”

We might agree that we have a little work to be done in the kindness area, but generally people seem to think they are doing a pretty good job of treating others well.

In a study of 100 young people with ... Read More