Personal Essays

A Christmas Week Fire

A roaring fire consumed our isolated house on Dec. 21, 1972, and caused my most memorable—if not exactly my favorite—Christmas. Awakened in the night by the barking of our dog, my husband Bob and I grabbed our two children and rushed out into the country darkness to stand, shivering in the sub-freezing night, but elated
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Writing: My Bend in the River

Born on the border between Oregon and Washington, I’m proud to be a Northwest writer. The English language has fascinated me since I first deciphered “milk” on a carton. Once I realized that learning to read would allow me ready access to my Red Ryder comic books, I was hooked. Though I had always dreamed
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The peaceful green rows of my raspberry patch today stand in stark contrast to my memories of the raspberry fields of my youth. Back then, raspberries were much more to me than just fruit; they represented danger, romance, and freedom. In 1957, when I was fourteen, I landed my first real job–picking raspberries in Puyallup,
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A Perfect B&B: Primrose Grange House

Called ahead for a B&B in Sligo. Our first choice couldn’t take us because they had a wedding scheduled, so we’ll cross our fingers that our second choice, which could take us, will be of interest. It has an odd name, Primrose Grange House, but was built in 1723 and situated partway up a mountain,
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Patsy gave us 13-1/2 years of joy as she also provided a template for desirable dog behavior and temperament. From the moment Bob brought her home from the Humane Society as a 12-week-old pup, she did everything right. She brought the newspaper inside every morning, traveled with us all over the West, and didn’t bark (unless a
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