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The Gift of Life


Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, December 18, 2000

When the phone rang at three a.m. last Monday morning, my husband Joe sat straight up out of a deep sleep, "Baby time," he said.

With one foot on the floor, he then heard me saying, "Yes, you can dry ginger and black peppers.

After a pause, I asked the man with a deep accent on the other end of the line, "Where are you calling from?"

"Tanzania."

"What time is it there?"

"Noon," he replied.

After answering his questions as best I could, I lay back down. In my Internet-based business of selling food dehydrators, books and supplies, giving advice in the middle of the night is not all that unusual.

Then a few minutes later the phone rang again. This time, we were both convinced it had to be my son, Eric, or his wife, Shayla announcing they were on their way to the hospital, but again it was the Tanzanian devil. This time he wanted to know how to dry bananas.

Everything had been ready for weeks: the crib, high chair, blankets and most importantly lots of lots of room in our hearts for unconditional love. We had talked with other first-time grandparents about the sheer joy of an absolutely fabulous, beautiful new baby.

The responsibility of being grandparents and passing down our traditions to another generation helped Joe and I acknowledge how influential our grandparents and parents have been. We remembered the cookies, the Sunday pot roasts after church, tobogganing on fresh snow and hot chocolate, the family get-togethers, the stories, and the fishing expeditions. We talked about how going to our grandparents meant there was one safe place, when the rest of the world seemed out of control and scary. They provided the rock, the foundation, and the base that we could always count on.

Since Eric and Shayla knew they were expecting a boy, my grandson has already had an identity for quite some time and I think this has helped all of us to connect with him. The wait was all that was left. One night I dreamed of a little boy standing next to the road with two older Indian men, one on each side of him. Eric dreamed of seeing his son lying in his crib, looking up with open eyes.

Then on Wednesday, December 13th at 10:59 p.m. Hunter Evans Gehrke entered this world. At the hospital, I saw Eric and Shayla instantly bond with this little buckaroo, falling into the role of parent as naturally as one breathes. I was overwhelmed with pride watching .....
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Fillmore County Pork Producers
Hoffman Stables

One of Our Own

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, December 18, 2000

When a sadistic act of violence leaves a woman dead, when a tainted piece of evidence lets her killer walk, how far would you go to see justice done? This is an excerpt from the book, A Thin Dark Line by Tami Hoag.
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The Underground

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, November 27, 2000

Earth
Day after day
Wave after wave
Where are you going? Where are you going?
Earth wounded by so many wandering men!
Earth fertilized by the bodies of so many.
But the earth is us,
We' ..... 
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Bird Brains

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday,December 11, 2000

While some may beg to disagree, I believe most birds are smart, real smart. Far more intelligent, in fact, than science ever gives them credit for. Unlike many ornithologists (bird scientists) who evaluate avian though ..... 
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Escape from America

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, December 11, 2000

I guess Im a snowbird at heart because every year about this time, once the temperature dips below zero and looks like its going to stay there awhile, I start yearning to go south. Way south. All the way down to Ecu ..... 
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The Cold Finger of Christmas

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, December 18, 2000

One afternoon, when our youngest son was even younger, he came in from playing in the snow. He tugged off his snow armor, creating small snowdrifts on the floor as he did so. He kicked his boots into a corner and walk ..... 
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Its a BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, feeling

Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Monday, December 4, 2000

Every once in a blue moon my computer will react strongly to some illegal operation I have performed and give me an output that reads: BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD. Its a total unsettling feeling.

Unfortunat ..... 
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Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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Sun, Dec 17th, 2000
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