All posts by Bette Burgess

‘Out of Africa’ and other places

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

I love watching movies. The first movie my brother and I saw was in the living room of our adopted parents’ home. I was around 5 and my brother was 3.

Our Dad pulled up the white screen with tiny white beads on it. The projector was brown and got very hot if it ran for too long. The film was in reels and about the size of a saucer. They were housed in a thin, square, cardboard box with a picture and a name on the front of the cover.

Continue reading ‘Out of Africa’ and other places

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Keep your curiosity alive

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

Last month, I visited friends in Danville, VA, who were babysitting their 4-year-old grandson.

My hostess wanted to photograph me reading my recently published children’s book to him. Since he already knew the story by heart, he whispered to me, “Pretend like you are reading the book to me.”

He was so bright, inquisitive and creative in his play that I was happy when he included me as his playmate.

Continue reading Keep your curiosity alive

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How we handle negative situations in our lives

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

Mother Nature or the Tree Elves struck when everyone was asleep.

A previous week’s rain soaked old dead limbs that no longer held leaves or acted as a chlorophyll factory for the main tree trunk of one of the many oak trees in our yard. Periodically, these rain-soaked ancient limbs fall, looking almost prehistoric with the fungus, lichen and mushroom like fans that live on them.

Continue reading How we handle negative situations in our lives

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Keeping in contact with relatives … even in July

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

July is one of the hottest months of the year and the farther south you go, the hotter it gets. Yet this is the month my late mother’s small Methodist Church in Bethel, SC, holds its homecoming.

Today I received a postcard announcing the July 19 date. They predicted a miserably hot day and for us not to bring jello molds or any salads, including tuna, potato, macaroni or slaw, that would be drenched in mayonnaise because, as we all know, this heat business and mayo can bring on salmonella and the screaming you-know-whats. Continue reading Keeping in contact with relatives … even in July

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We find things that make us very happy

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

Happiness for some people is picking strawberries and making jars of strawberry preserves to keep and to give as gifts.

Happiness for others is manning the riding lawnmower and roaring across the back forty like Mad Max in Fury Road.

For me. it was hearing about pottery starting soon at Randolph Community College. The following Monday morning, I jumped out of bed, sprinted down the hall, let my dog, Ava Gardner, out for her morning constitutional, and dialed Randolph Community College’s continuing education office. Continue reading We find things that make us very happy

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What tickles your funny bone?

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

Is it the antics of your pets? Your next door neighbor who can tell joke after joke?

Or is it the years of late nights with David Letterman who retired recently? He has been an influence on other late night entertainers. Letterman was known for his Top Ten List, Stupid Dog Tricks and Stupid Human Tricks. He continued the popular segment “Kids Say the Darndest Things,” which Art Linkletter created.

Continue reading What tickles your funny bone?

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We never forget our first jobs

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

What was your first job? Was it babysitting, a paper delivery route after school as you pedaled your bicycle through the neighborhood? Was it a job at McDonalds, Hardees or Burger King? I will venture that you learned a lot, whatever the job. Continue reading We never forget our first jobs

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Hobbies separate us from animals

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

I would venture to say that 85% of North Americans have some sort of hobby. Collecting comics, dolls and action figures, arrowheads or antique Cracker Jack toys begin in early childhood. Hunting, fishing, golfing, tennis, coin and stamp collecting are hobbies that come later.

When we lived at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, my brother began collecting arrowheads. While he was in first grade, Travis, a classmate, showed him an arrowhead that his dad had unearthed with his plow. Continue reading Hobbies separate us from animals

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Architecture is one of our influencers

Bette Burgess
Bette Burgess

We all began life as nomads, following reindeer, buffalo, rabbits, fish or whatever food was available in the region where we lived. Centuries later, we settled down into our home in the world.

It might have been a yurt, a long house for many families, a one-room log cabin, a lean-to near running water, a boat where your family lived, caught and cooked meals and traded with other boat people, or later, a hand-me-down mansion. Continue reading Architecture is one of our influencers

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