Sunday, February 7, 2016

Back-to-school shopping is a piece of cake with my 16-year-old son, Jon. We don't shop. And I love it.

"You just can't imagine what loneliness is," Dad confessed quietly as he eased his way off our deck that has needed new steps since we moved in (has it really been 13 years?).

My son, the country boy, is suddenly a city boy. Plucked from our farm situated near a tiny town, he is now in a city that seems to never sleep.

Every August, about silage chopping time, my mind flits back to a burning question of my youth: Given the old fashioned way we made corn silage on that southern Illinois dairy farm, were we just poor or were we just cheap?

I firmly believe that two of the most daunting - albeit well-intentioned - statements in the English language are thus: "When God closes a door, He opens a window" and "God has a plan.

Our family has never felt compelled to do "back to school" shopping like some, but since Kathie's lunch bag from last year is worn and stained, during a weak moment in Wal-Mart, I opted to pick up an insulated hot pink bag and a coordinated water bottle that slides neatly inside.

Anyone who fancies himself a writer always reads and critiques other writers' efforts, sometimes with disdain and sometimes with admiration while saying to himself, "I wish I'd written that.

It's a good thing we humans don't get to run the weather or we would be living on one mighty, mixed-up planet.

About 10 seconds after the Democrats reclaimed the House of Representatives last November, Collin Peterson, the Minnesotan who would lead the chamber's Ag Committee come January, began to think about the 2007 farm bill.

With all due respect to Dr. Dolittle, if I could talk to the animals what I would say is this: Dudes, I need my space.
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