Before 2013 faded out, my intentions were to congratulate a number of local people receiving honors. And though it is late, and I'll probably overlook some important ones, I'll still tip my hat to these.
I hope each of you had a safe and wonderful Christmas and that your New Year is off to a good start. My family was blessed this past year in so many ways, and we had a wonderful holiday season. Stacie and I have a tradition of taking the girls to the mountains for New Year's, and we had a great time again this year. The girls were extremely excited to be there to see their first snow of the season.
This could be an important piece of information I am about to share with you. Whether it is or not is up to you. It depends on how much you care about the money being spent on our state's politicians. If you don't care and want to cop the "it doesn't make any difference" attitude, then I suggest you blow the dust off the ol' Funk & Wagnall and look up the word "apathy." Or go kiss a goat. Your choice.
Good grief. I just took a peek at next week's calendar. It says 2014. That can't be correct. I'm still waiting for Y2K and for all our computers to crash. I must have overslept.
The Georgia Hospital Administration and the Georgia State Medical Association are asking Gov. Nathan Deal to accept the federal government's offer of $40.5 billion for Medicaid expansion in our state.
Santa is a big part of our annual Christmas party for Friends of Recovery, but I had not met the man playing Santa this year.
There is no way I can send Christmas cards to all the wonderful people who expressed concern for me during my recent "confinement" through cards, calls, flowers, food, visits and prayers. So please accept this as my personal greeting to you. It is also a greeting to those whom I don't even know.
The mood in the galley of the research ship was gloomy. Our grand experiment had failed and we were pounding our way through the rough seas of the Gulf of Mexico bound for New Orleans.
Former South African president Nelson Mandela has received much-deserved praise following his death on Dec. 5 at the age of 95, and rightly so. South Africa could have sunk into chaos and a bloody civil war with Mandela's rise to power following 27 years of imprisonment and the end of apartheid. Instead, he preached reconciliation and forgiveness, not vengeance. For that, the world can be grateful.
It is hard to believe that 2013 is about to come to a close. It has been a productive and busy year for my family. I was blessed to be able to serve in my first session as your representative. It is a true honor to represent you at the Georgia State Capitol. With the year coming to an end, we are gearing up for the 2014 legislative session that will start on Jan. 13.
When "Dawson County, Georgia Heritage 1857-1996" was published, Dawson County Historical Society members didn't visualize that 27 years later there would be a third printing. For several years, there have been no copies available for sale, but this year they had a limited number of books reprinted and are now offering them as a Christmas special for the price of the original book, $65.
Recently Rep. Kevin Tanner wrote about how great it is to live in Georgia.
Last week, family and friends gathered in the small town of Chattahoochee Hills, south of Atlanta, to celebrate a life well-lived. Our late grandson, Zack Wansley, was honored at the dedication of "Zack's Glade," a pristine and picturesque piece of Cochran Mill Park near where he died while training for the Atlanta Marathon in 2008.
Thank you to Amicalola EMC Foundation and to each and every person who takes part in Operation Round-up on behalf of Caring Hands Ministries and each person and family the Operation Round-up grant to Caring Hands will help us help.
That statement is more a "both/and" than an "either/or."
Most young Georgians have never heard of Bo Callaway, a gentleman from Georgia.
I wish I had been there. In Jerusalem. With Jesus.
April is traditionally known for showers, blooming trees and shrubs and early flowers. We have had our share of those (including the pollen) and are enjoying the "popping out" beauty.
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Georgia, as proclaimed by Gov. Nathan Deal. Child abuse is a subject I don't like to think about, let alone write about and you would probably just as soon not hear about. But it is there and we need to acknowledge it and demand some solutions.
Last week Sen. Steven Gooch and Rep. Kevin Tanner wrote about the end of the general session and the bills they had sponsored and that had been passed. Some good was done.
If you attended the annual meeting of the Dawson County Homeowners Civic Association, you don't need to read this column. However, not many of you were there.
Even by my impossibly high standards, this has been a good week. It began with a whack upside the head from a reader in south Georgia after I opined that those who want to change the way we teach our children in public schools ought to have their kids in public schools. I was referring to the efforts led by Sen. William Ligon, R-Brunswick, to overturn the Common Core curriculum in the recent legislative session.
The 2014 legislative session came to an end March 20, when the House and Senate completed the 40th and final legislative day.
On the last day of the 2013 legislative session, a bill that would have substantially protected and enforced the Second Amendment rights of all Georgians failed to receive final legislative approval in the late night hours. Supporters of that bill, including myself, were extremely disappointed in the outcome, but we committed ourselves to making sure a stronger Second Amendment protection bill was brought back in 2014.
My high school friend in Texas stood about 5'4," yet even the biggest football players gave him a wide berth when he walked down the hall.
Since the policy of the federal government seems to be to snoop on the conversations of private citizens, I thought it would be appropriate if we turned the tables on them. So, I authorized my columnist commandos to infiltrate the White House disguised as teleprompters and get the real scoop on the latest developments in Ukraine.
My husband and I have lived in Dawson County for the last eight years. We have found it to be a very pleasant experience. However, there is one thing that could make it even more pleasant, a dog park.
One of the greatest things about serving District 51 is the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of Georgians statewide.
We returned to the Gold Dome for the ninth week of the 2014 legislative session on March 10. In that week, we focused on reviewing, debating and voting upon legislation that had already been passed by our counterparts in the Senate. Many pieces of the Senate's legislation were reviewed by committees throughout the week. Other pieces of Senate legislation made it through the committee process and on to the House floor for a vote.
I was at the sausage-making plant last week, better known as the Georgia General Assembly. I was there for a good cause. The state Senate was honoring Dick Pettys, one of the finest journalists to walk through the doors of the state Capitol, and I was asked to be a part of that special day.