Hike with Pride this month!

June is LGBTQIA+ Pride Month as well as Great Outdoors Month and so this blog will be about both! LGBTQIA+ is an acronym that stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual and the plus is for gender fluid people - people whose gender identity changes over time or per situation. Queer is a … Continue reading Hike with Pride this month!

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

I made my first trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in 1975 when I was in graduate school at UTK in Knoxville.  Three years later, forty years ago, our family made our first hiking trip, when we participated in a church sponsored outing, which included a walk up Mount LeConte.   Since then, we've … Continue reading Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Libraries Rock this summer!

This summer the Summer Learning Program theme for children and teens is "Libraries Rock!" What a great way to think about libraries. They do rock, especially today, when the era of the silent library and the Shushing Librarian is firmly in the past. Mind you, most libraries offer quiet spaces for those who want or … Continue reading Libraries Rock this summer!

Let’s clear the air: a Vulture is not a Buzzard

  Today’s blog focuses on the Turkey Vulture, another one of the most commonly seen birds here in the Southeast. Before we talk about identifying characteristics though, I thought we could dive into the semantics of the terms vulture and buzzard, because it can be pretty confusing. Before researching this topic, whenever I heard the … Continue reading Let’s clear the air: a Vulture is not a Buzzard

Murder in Strange Places

When I am not reading non-fiction, I tend to relax with two or three good mysteries.  The past few months I've reading Kerry Greenwood's Phryne Fisher mysteries  set in Australia in the 1920s, and watching the show on PBS.   Deborah Crombie writes a series of books starring a couple of London detective inspectors and their … Continue reading Murder in Strange Places

Libraries Lead

This past week, April 8th to 14th, was National Library Week! Hooray! We hope everyone celebrated appropriately with books and movies borrowed from your library. If not, don’t worry, Governor Cooper has declared this month as Library Appreciation Month!  National Library Week was first officially sponsored in 1958, making this the 60th anniversary! This week … Continue reading Libraries Lead

“I’ve been to the mountaintop!”

Today (April 4, 2018) is the fifty year anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was to lead a march with striking city garbage workers.  The march had originally been scheduled for March 22,1968, but Mother Nature had dumped eighteen inches of snow on the city, so … Continue reading “I’ve been to the mountaintop!”

“We Gotta Get Out Of This Place,” Vietnam, Part 3

This  is the third blog  in a series about the Vietnam War and focuses on the  consequences of  the Communist Tét Offensive in the spring of 1968.  It is also the fiftieth  anniversary  of the North Vietnamese Army (PAVN)/VC attack that changed the war and influenced the political climate back in the States.    Tét is … Continue reading “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place,” Vietnam, Part 3

Truman vs. MacArthur

On June 25, 1950, the North Korean army streamed across the 38th parallel attacking the poorly equipped Republic of Korea (ROK) soldiers, driving them southward.  With the backing of the United Nations Security Council, President Harry S. Truman ordered General Douglas MacArthur to send  members of the 8th United States army, then on occupation duty … Continue reading Truman vs. MacArthur

YA Books Eclipsed by Bestsellers

Young Adult (YA) books have been in an incredible renaissance for the last few years, which only seems to be growing. Powerful topics like police brutality, Black Lives Matter, representation of disability, and more are now featured on the shelves, something that would have been a rare sight even 5-10 years ago. However, with so … Continue reading YA Books Eclipsed by Bestsellers