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For as long as I can remember, I have either watched or performed in the Nutcracker. Going to see the Nutcracker was the first memory that I have of seeing a live performance. Most kids would have either cried, squealed or simply fallen asleep, but not me.

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By this time next week little sister will be almost a week old. We’ll call her Nellie James, short for Eleanor.

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Freedom of speech is guaranteed by the United States Constitution.  That means we have the privilege of expressing our views without reprisal from the government.  But when you exercise that right you should be aware that criticism and insults will come your way.

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A 9 year- old Ohio elementary student had his hot lunch taken away and was given a cheese sandwich because he had a lunch debt of $9.75.  It was his birthday.

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Today I took my official senior portrait. Yes–the one with the drape and pearls that gets published in the yearbook for everyone to see–that senior portrait. The circumstances were not ideal.

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Thanksgiving, oh Thanksgiving. It truly is one of my favorite holidays.

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It’s that time of year again.  The time when our attention turns to turkey, dressing, all the fixins, and reflection on being thankful for our many blessings.

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I could make a list of all the things I’m not good at, and it would fill this column space. It would include swimming, singing, cooking, and anything that requires athleticism or construction skills.

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A little while back I finally started recycling.  I always thought that doing so would lend some relief to the years of guilt I had from not starting recycling sooner. That hasn’t really been the case though.

Danielle Wallingsford Kirkland is a former Sentinel staff writer and correspondent. She can be reached at danielle.w.kirkland@gmail.com.

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I am a college football fan. Watching the Alabama Crimson Tide play is like reading a good book.  You won’t know the outcome until the last page.

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I was first introduced to digital photography in the spring of my sophomore year. That was the semester when I took the Photography I class at my high school. Before this class, I had never even used a digital camera for anything other than family photos.

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I know some people don’t like it much, but I sure am enjoying this cold spell. After a long stretch of feeling like I’m always covered in an electric blanket and freezing everyone else to death by keeping the heat on 65 I finally got chilly enough to turn it up on 68 and rest with a blanket over me today.

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The United States House of Representatives recently launched an impeachment inquiry after a federal employee claimed to have knowledge alleging that President Trump used the threat of withholding military aid to Ukraine unless that government launched an investigation into former Vice-President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.

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I’ve always heard that home is where the heart is. I guess I’ve always believed it too. But the past few days have made me reconsider this old saying.

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It used to be on Halloween that I loved to dress up and eat candy, but I also loved to watch a good scary movie. I’d be nervous in the dark for a while, but my nerves could handle it and for some reason it was fun to be scared. Sadly, my nerves just won’t allow me to indulge in fear anymore.

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SparkNotes have received an infamous reputation for offering simplified versions of works of literature. SparkNotes is a company that offers study materials for students online and in print.

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As a child, I remember Daddy saying I couldn’t climb trees in my dress or go on Cub Scout camping trips with my brother because I was a girl. It made me angry, but I also remember other times he told me that I was smart and could do anything I put my mind to.  In a child’s view, that meant t…

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Recently, I paid tribute to Chattanooga radio legend Luther Masingill on the fifth anniversary of his death, but I've never shared the story of how he got into the National Radio Hall of Fame. It wasn't easy, and it was a frustrating process. Now it can be told.

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After Mama finished telling me about some cousins of mine who hitchhiked from here to California I asked her whether or not that might be where I get my yearning for adventure from. She laughed and said it could be, as her own mama’s side of the family sometimes lived like gypsies.

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On Monday, Oct. 20, 2014, I woke up and did my daily routine.  First, I look at my phone.  I check e-mails, messages, Twitter and Facebook.  Most days I find I didn't miss anything important.

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Thank you to everyone who attended the cemetery stroll last weekend and thank you for your generous donations that will enable us to place a historical marker at the front of the cemetery. 

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Hello again readers. It’s been a while, huh?

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October marks the midpoint in the semester and like all Octobers life has become increasingly busy.

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This year’s college admission scandal resulted in parents being accused of bribing test administrators to change test scores or allow cheating.  This has resulted in some colleges re-thinking their position on the use of standardized testing in the admissions process.

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Mark Twain once wrote that “kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”

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Everyone has a hidden talent. For some it might be wiggling their ears or being able to recite the alphabet backwards. My hidden talent is Jeopardy! . Yes, the game show hosted by Alex Trebek where contestants answer trivia in the form of a question is my hidden talent.

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Someone asked me recently how I come up with a column topic each week. As I write this one, my 300th since beginning this endeavor in 2013, the answer is easy. I write about whatever is on my mind. 

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We didn't have Character Education in school when I was growing up.  Oh, we had some characters. We had boys in 11th grade who had been held back so many times, they were drawing their pension.  We had another kid who specialized in making odd noises behind the teacher's back: the sound of a…

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It was a summer, I remember. I walked into his office and he said, “I’ve been waiting on you.”

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This week, the nation will recognize Constitution Week in honor of the two hundred and thirty second birthday of the ratification of the United States Constitution.

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Most people view voting as a big deal.  They come out to the polls to cast their vote because they believe it is the only time their voice will be heard.  They don’t protest or write letters to make their point, they just do what they believe is the right thing.

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According to data provided by the nonprofit group, Gun Violence Archive, there have been 283 mass shootings this year.  Mass shooting is defined as one in which four people were shot, excluding the shooter.

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I don't usually write about sports, but since the Atlanta Braves are having such a terrific year, let's have some fun.

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College application season has once more come to terrorize the newest class of high school seniors.

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I wrote about “fixing stupid” recently, hoping we might see some progress. Unfortunately, we have a long way to go.

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Based on historical events, there are fads or trends that come along and everyone jumps on the band wagon and the next thing you know, it’s a “thing.”

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When people learn that I’m a ballet dancer one question seems to be asked more than any other; does standing on your toes hurt? Assuming that they’re talking about pointe shoes I just nod my head, smile and say yes. However, the experience of wearing pointe shoes is much more in-depth than a…