Brenda Cannon Henley's archive

Visiting a friend’s home the other day, I witnessed something that I’m not sure I will ever forget. The family had a new, furry puppy, and who doesn’t love seeing a little fellow run and play, attempt to chase his own tail, pounce on a small rubber ball, and try to mimic the big dogs in the house? This pup’s little legs were very short and he was plump, but boy, did he get around on the hardwood floors.

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I have long believed that our attitude greatly determines our level of gratitude. If we spend our time thinking about how many good things we have in our lives, we have little time to dwell on the bad or wrong things. And I suppose this is a well-traveled two-way street. If our attitudes stink, then our levels of gratitude will be low or non-existent.

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In all these long years of writing, I have tried to be honest with those that follow my columns and news coverage in various media. I have taken the advice of a faithful teacher who first pointed me to this adventure of putting my words on paper. “Write what you know best,” said Erma Nowell in the classrooms of the old Clarkston High School in DeKalb County, Georgia.

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Words are powerful things, no matter what the quote books say. “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” is simply not true. I know this from first-hand experience.

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I learned a new word today — “gaslighting.” I admit I am fascinated by words and having used them for years to make my living, I am constantly amazed at new discoveries even at my age. My good friend, Rusty Cluck, is a wordsmith, though he won’t likely admit it to many. He comes up with some real winners from time to time, and I find myself looking for them in his writings. I wonder if Rusty has come across this word, which was new for me today.

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