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400 Edition W h a t ’s

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N o r t h

May 2010

G e o r g i a

The Many Faces of a Mother FREE

May 2010 Carole Lee, Founder/Creative Design Tim Herrel, Sales Linda Merritt, Founder/Sales/Executive Editor Bob Merritt, Director of Sales Beth Snider, Founder/Sales/Creative Design Nancy Wright, Proofing

Contributing Writers: Anne Amerson

Sharon Keating

Clay Cunningham

Steven Leibel

Dr. Mark Feinsilber

Dr. Joyce Nations

Nancy Forrest

Donald Pruitt

Robin Toms Grier

Linda Ragland

Martha Hynson

Patrick Snider

Staff Writers: Rhonda Bailey

Linda Merritt

Carole Lee

Beth Snider

Bob Merritt

Nancy Wright

400 Edition is published monthly in Dahlonega, Georgia, with distribution in three counties. Viewpoints expressed by contributing writers are not necessarily those of the publishers, staff or advertisers. 400 Edition is not liable for inaccurate or erroneous information posted in advertising or event submissions. Ads must be submitted and paid in full by the 20th of every month, unless arrangements have been made in advance. Content and presentation of advertisements is subject to editorial review and modification. Ad dimensions and pricing may be obtained by calling 706-867-6455 or 866867-7557. These specs may also be viewed at Writers may submit material to editor@400edition. com. Submissions are subject to approval by the editor and may be edited for space, requirements, and style. The deadline for submissions is the 15th of each month. Contents of this publication become the property of 400 Edition and the original author and cannot be reproduced without written consent of the publisher. This publication is printed by Walton Press in Monroe, GA.

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From the Editor... T

his issue has been a lot of fun to get together. I want to thank Vanessa McBrayer for all the help she gave us this past month. She gathered so much information, interviewed mothers, and got pictures, and she deserves a lot of credit for some of the content in this issue. Go by Lava Hair and tell her thank you. I have only good memories of my mother and I know I was truly blessed. She died when she was 68 (I was 36 at the time) so I didn’t have long with her. She died in March 1976 and not a day goes by that I don’t still miss her. She loved all kinds of flowers and trees and could make anything grow. One of her favorite flowers was wild violets and we always had them by our back porch while I was growing up. Right now I have an old pot by the back deck full of the pretty purple flowers, and they are plentiful in our flower beds. Every time I go out and see them, I think about how much she would have liked them. There are so many good gifts I got from her. One of the most important ones was how she taught me to love. I raised my daughters just like she raised me (except they didn’t get the spankings I did) and they have all grown up to be loving, caring, young ladies. Mama also made me believe that I could do anything I wanted to do. That gave me a world of confidence and the desire to succeed. So to all the mothers, I wish you a

happy Mother’s Day. We also want to remember Memorial Day on May 31. This is the day we honor the men and women who have died doing their military duty to keep our country free. This holiday has been observed since the Civil War. There are usually lots of barbecues and picnics to celebrate this day. Take time to say a prayer for our military as they continue to fight to preserve our freedom. What a beautiful spring we have had. Most of the flowering trees have shed their blooms but they were pretty while they lasted. The pollen caused havoc with everyone this year, so the heavy rain was welcome and at least everything was washed clean. Until next month…stay happy!

On the Cover T

he weather forecast threatened rain on Saturday, April 17, and we had made plans to shoot this cover. Of course, it didn’t rain, it was bright and sunny and a perfect day for a photo. Vanessa McBrayer had arranged for all the ladies to meet at the Peach Brandy Cottage in Dawsonville. Vanessa even entertained the kids while their moms were posing for the pictures. Thanks to the folks at Peach Brandy for letting us use their beautiful facility. Everything was clean and manicured. Even the swans on the lake were in rare form. If you are planning an event, you will want to check their web site ( and see all the things they have to offer. Also thanks to all the mothers who gave up their Saturday morning to take part in this issue. They are (front row) Teresa Conowal, Amy Roberts, Linda Merritt, Sharon Keating, Candace Neighbours; (back row) Katie Owen, Janice Darnell, Wendy Sundgren, Dana Jones, Jessica Beck, and Lisa Bennett. Mary Otway was unable to attend the photo shoot. Thanks to Beth Snider for all the effort she put into making this a great cover. You will see all of these special ladies’ stories in this issue. I wish we could have put all our mothers on the cover; but know that we love and appreciate each one of you and wish you a Happy Mother’s Day. Last month we neglected to include the web address of our April cover artist, Connie Lynn Reilly: So take a look at her site, and let Connie know how much you enjoyed her beautiful art on our April cover. Don’t hold back; tell us how you really feel about 400 Edition. We love receiving feedback from our readers and advertisers. Call us at 706-867-6455, toll free at 866-867-7557, or send an email to


May 2010 Volume 6, Issue 12

The Many Faces of a Mother


6 Grandma’s Hands

4 Reflections

15 Happy Mother’s Day

5 Comma Momma

16 The Many Faces of a Mother

8 Leibel on the Law 8 Through a Woman’s Eyes

19 Are You Raising Your Grandchild? 20 To My Mom, Judith

9 Your Vision Source

20 You Ain’t Got Nothin’ Till You Put a Girl In It

10 Gardening Tasks: May

21 A Mother I would Choose

14 Mind & Heart

22 My Mother, Nancy King

15 To Your Health 22 Fun by 400 30 Knowing Wine 30 Good Eating – Rick Tanner’s Grille & Bar 31 Real Men Cook – Blackberry Cornbread

A list of major distribution pointsMay in North can be found online at 2010 Georgia •

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from the ground up.

Life is a mirror. We look forward, that’s the future. We look back, remember and learn—that’s a reflection.

I’ll Always Remember Momma by Bob Merritt


honestly can’t remember ever calling her any kin that could help. I write about Momma Mother; it was always Momma. I hold the term from time to time and somehow get the feeling I “Mother” in the highest of reverence, but since am a lot like her. she always answered to “Momma,” I will refer to Rarely do I ever see a house like the one we her as that. The image of Momma is with me all lived in when we moved to North Little Rock through the year, yet we set aside this special day, in the early ’40s. The closest is an old house on Mother’s Day, to honor moms in a special way. Auraria Road in Lumpkin County near Dahlonega. Many of you were raised in part or solely by your It is the most photographed house in my grandmother, so we honor them as well. It will be collection. It brings back memories of a time long almost impossible to find space that day gone, and of Momma who has been gone too in a restaurant—where for some long. I have God’s promise and know reason we feel she would rather for certain I will see her again on go, when all she wants is to that glorious day. be with her children and I don’t recall Momma Author Unknown feel their closeness and ever taking us to church. Tempted and tried, we’re oft made to wonder love. If my Momma Six of us from seven were alive, I know years old down would Why it should be thus all the day long, she would like a have been a handful While there are others living about us, fried chicken picnic for her. Daddy would Never molested, though in the wrong. under that big oak have never gone to help. Farther along we’ll know all about it, tree, surrounded by Somehow I believe Farther along we’ll understand why; her kids and grandkids. Momma was a Christian. Grandma was already I find comfort in knowing Cheer up, my brother, live in the sunshine, gone, yet she would be on her mother and father took We’ll understand it all by and by. Momma’s mind. Momma their sixteen girls and one boy (Wilma) would be wishing that to church every Sunday. Another Grandma could see what she started. telltale clue was the songs she sang. As I look around me, I continually see Momma took in washing and ironing of other young mothers who have it really good. Life has folks’ clothes, and whether she was stirring the blessed them with a child or children who are big wash pot in the yard or ironing clothes in the getting a good education, have a great life style, doorway, she sang one good old Baptist hymn and for the most part still have their grandmother. over and over. To me she sang as pretty as any Maybe that grandmother remembers when songbird I have ever heard. The song continues to times weren’t so good, food was scarce, jobs tell me a lot about Momma, her trials, tribulations, were hard to find, and the world was at war. If joys, and sorrows. Although she knew by now her mother was anything like my mother, she that all her dreams would never be, she turned her would have lived on a farm or in a small town attention to raising us kids. Momma’s life never where things were hard for a girl. My Momma got any easier and her health slipped away. We grew up on a farm in Prattsville, Arkansas. The lost Momma 70 years ago, yet a little bit of her nearest big town was the small town of Sheridan. still lives in each of us. I don’t hear her song as Momma made good grades and did well in school. much as I would like to, yet every time I pick up Grandpa Gus knew how important schooling was a hymnal I turn to the index and look for “Farther to Wilma, so he gave her a loose rein as far as Along.” her education went. She still had her farm chores Make sure that you show your mother, to do, and many fell on her as her many sisters grandmother, aunt, and that special person who married off. She went to college in Russellville, helped raise you in some special way, that you Arkansas, which was a long way from Prattsville. love them and thank them for the part they have That’s where she met my dad. I trust she really, played in your life. Do it up big, since there is no really loved him, since she paid a terrible price. guarantee of next year; for that matter, tomorrow All Momma ever wanted to do was be a teacher. isn’t promised either. Happy Mother’s Day to all Dad evidently didn’t buy into her dream. He put mothers and grandmothers. Know you are loved. stumbling blocks in her path every chance he got—mainly us six kids, stair-stepped and one after another. The Depression was going on and we seemed to move farther from her parents and

Farther Along

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May 2010 •

Comma Momma A

newspaper website recently posted a story about a man who accidentally dug up a grenade. The man called 911, and a few hours later, according to the story, “the grenade was denoted” behind the local fire station. Um…what? They denoted the grenade? Denote means to mark or indicate—obviously not the right word here. Even the most casual reader would assume that the reporter meant detonate. But how did it get to be denote, a word with a completely unrelated meaning? Here’s one scenario: Suppose the reporter typed detoned instead of detonated (easy enough to do in haste), and then hastily ran spellcheck. And then, perhaps distracted, accepted one of the spellchecker’s suggestions without really looking at it. Tah-DAH. Denoted instead of detonated. This same kind of thing happens often to those of us who use word processors; so often, in fact, that there’s a term to describe a word’s unintentional replacement by one of the wildly inappropriate suggestions offered by the spellchecker. It’s called the Cupertino effect. The name arose some years ago among writers in the European Union when they discovered the spellcheckers in their word processors were changing the word cooperation

The Cupertino Effect

(written without the hyphen) to Cupertino. This gave rise to such odd sentences as “The Cupertino with our Italian comrades proved to be very fruitful.” Why the name of a California city would have been in an EU spellchecker’s list of acceptable words back then is not entirely clear; it may or may not have anything to do with the fact that Cupertino is the home of Apple computers. In any event, the rules that spellcheckers go by have come a long way in the last ten years, and the word Cupertino itself has been removed from many spellcheckers. But the effect continues. I saw a headline on a CNBC screen last year that said, “The market wants to divulge into chaos.” Since divulge means to disclose something (usually private or secret information), that word obviously makes neither grammatical nor logical sense here. I suspect it was the Cupertino effect at work, but I’m still trying to figure out what the word should have been. Devolve, perhaps? Somewhere else I ran across pursued in a context that suggested it should have been perused. That Cupertino is easy to work out; if you type purused instead of perused, Microsoft Word’s first suggestion is pursued. I saw the word condensation in a blog entry recently, where the context clearly called

May 2010 •

by Nancy Wright

for condescension. Not sure if the writer just reached for the wrong word, or if that was a Cupertino as well. In the technical books I work on every day, the Word feature that puts the red squiggles under misspelled words is normally turned off, because the red squiggles triggered by all the programming jargon would be distracting to the reviewers. But sometimes, if I’m sufficiently bored, I’ll turn the red squiggles back on and right-click on a red-squiggled technical term just to see what Word thinks it ought to be. For example, for the word symlink, Word suggests soy milk. For the word precached, Word suggests preached. Yes, I know; no reviewer working on a technical book is going to be looking at—let alone considering—a spellchecker’s suggestions. But the lesson is unmistakable: Never let your word processor change anything automatically, and even if you go through the misspelled words manually, never ever let your mind wander. Nancy Wright formats technical books for a specialty publishing house in New York. She and her husband live in White County; you can contact her at You can visit the forums at to read some earlier columns.

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The Village Country Store


ere’s a big mountain welcome to the newest business on Highway 515 West. The Village Country Store of Blairsville is full of the old country-store smells, with a few new twists The shelves are stocked with traditional jams, jellies, and preserves, as well as cider, relishes, pickles, cheese, soups, and sauces. You will find a light-hearted and enjoyable experience as you tour the store and sample special treats. There is no end to the variety of gift ideas. Be sure you pick up a bag or two of the fresh Kettle Korn, a scrumptious popcorn delicacy. Your hosts, Candace and Mel Harris, are there to answer questions and make your visit enjoyable. They want you to remember The Village Country Store as a pleasant place to visit, and to come see them again. See their ad in this issue, and tell them you saw them in 400 Edition. The store stands out by itself, so let this map guide you. They are open from 10:00am until 5:00pm. For more information, visit

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randma, some ninety plus years, sat feebly on the patio bench. She didn’t move, just sat with her head down staring at her hands. When I sat down beside her she didn’t acknowledge my presence, and the longer I sat, the more I wondered if she was OK. Finally, not really wanting to disturb her but wanting to check on her at the same time, I asked her if she was OK. She raised her head and looked at me and smiled. “Yes, I’m fine, thank you for asking,” she said in a clear strong voice. “I didn’t mean to disturb you, Grandma, but you were just sitting here staring at your hands and I wanted to make sure you were OK,” I explained to her. “Have you ever looked at your hands,” she asked.. “I mean really looked at your hands?” I slowly opened my hands and stared down at them. I turned them over, palms up and then palms down. No, I guess I had never really looked at my hands, as I tried to figure out the point she was making. Grandma smiled and related this story: “Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they have served you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled, shriveled, and weak, have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and grab and embrace life. They braced and caught my fall when as a toddler I crashed upon the floor. They put food in my mouth and clothes on my back. As a child, my mother taught me to fold them in

prayer. They tied my shoes and pulled on my boots. They held my husband and wiped my tears when he went off to war. They have been dirty, scraped, and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. Decorated with my wedding band they showed the world that I was married and loved someone special. They wrote my letters to him and trembled and shook when I buried my parents and spouse. They have held my children and grandchildren, consoled neighbors, and shook in fists of anger when I didn’t understand. They have covered my face, combed my hair, and washed and cleansed the rest of my body. They have been sticky and wet, bent and broken, dried and raw. And to this day, when not much of anything else of me works real well, these hands hold me up, lay me down, and again continue to fold in prayer. These hands are the mark of where I’ve been and the ruggedness of life. But more importantly it will be these hands that God will reach out and take when he leads me home. And with my hands He will lift me to His side and there I will use these hands to touch the face of Christ.” I will never look at my hands the same again. But I remember God reached out and took my Grandma’s hands and led her home. When my hands are hurt or sore or when I stroke the face of my children and husband, I think of Grandma. I know she has been stroked and caressed and held by the hands of God. -Author Unknown

Leibel on the Law Children’s Injury Accidents


s school days wane, and our kids come home for the summer, concerns for children’s safety become paramount for most families. Children are often involved in accidents. These accidents can be the result of everyday living, or may be caused by the negligence of others. We handle many different types of trauma cases involving children. The majority of these are the result of car accidents, but we have also represented children injured in day care, and in schools. We have helped families in pool drowning cases. Children’s accidents are treated differently than those of adults. Although children are resilient, they can suffer more from the effects of an accident than many adults. Because children are developing, their bodies react differently to trauma and stress. Common injuries in auto accidents may be amplified in the body of a child, including brain injury. These injuries may manifest in different ways depending on the age of the child. When a baby is involved in an accident, she cannot communicate with her parents to discuss her level of discomfort, or how her thought process is altered. Her closed-head injury may not be readily apparent, but can be seen in subtle changes to her personality. A baby may become fussier. She may be cranky and not want to be held or cuddled. Her gentle personality may seem not as gentle as before. She may not be able to sleep as well as before the accident. Her developmental milestones as tested by her pediatrician no longer seem on track.

by Steven K. Leibel

When teens are involved in trauma, they are more able to tell their parents of the problems they may be facing. Problems in school work, interaction with others, and depression may occur. A child’s best indicator of brain injury is their report card. In a recent case, our client’s brain injury was documented through the changes in her school work. When a psychological assessment was performed, it was found that there was brain injury as a result of the accident. Additionally, whiplash injuries can result in disruptions to the brain stalk, where the pituitary and hypothalamus glands are located. In some cases this can affect fertility. Where parents have adequate insurance, including automobile medical pay policies, they can afford for their child to have an adequate assessment and treatment. Without proper assessment and treatment, problems can only get worse as a child becomes an adult. When a child is injured, parents also have a claim for their child’s medical expenses. These claims are governed under a two-year statute of limitations, and must be brought at an appropriate time. Children’s injury cases present special challenges for a personal injury lawyer. Rules governing the bringing of lawsuits and the settlement of claims for children are different from those governing adult claims. Claims involving children have varying statutes of limitations. Claims settled by parents on

Through a Woman’s Eyes

behalf of their children may need the approval of a court. Monies received may be placed in trusts, or put into structured settlements. Medicaid may also become involved. Oftentimes children’s claims are misjudged, and mishandled in the rush to have a case settled. Because the statute of limitations in most cases (NOT IN MEDICAL MALPRACTICE) is extended to begin running at the age of 18, there is usually no hurry to settle a claim. Thus, it is important to observe children, and not immediately resolve their cases. The need for a legal professional is paramount when it comes to dealing with all of the legal and medical issues involving children in accidents. Please see our website: Steven Leibel is a Georgia personal injury lawyer with offices in Dawson County and in Dahlonega. He currently serves as a member of the Georgia Bar Board of Governors for the Enotah Circuit. He is a Commission member of the Georgia Brain and Spinal Injury Trust Fund Commission. He is AV rated by Martindale Hubbell for his legal ability and ethical conduct. He can be reached at 706-867-7575 or 404-892-0700. Questions about his column can be sent to his email at Nothing in this column can be construed as the giving of legal advice. Legal advice can only be made through an attorney-client relationship. The statements made in this column are for general education purposes only.

by Martha Hynson

She Works With Eager Hands…


looked, bleary-eyed, at the mess around me. Scraps of cloth, snippets of thread, pattern pieces, and a pincushion lay scattered on the floor, keeping company with crayons, coloring paper, a box of baby wipes, and a variety of stuffed animals. The clock on the wall told me it was after midnight. I felt the tension in my shoulders spreading to my neck. My mother had sewn for my sisters and me and now that I had a daughter I felt I should do the same, but it was not coming very easily… Proverbs 31:13 says this about a virtuous wife: “She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands.” “Selecting the wool and flax” had been fun and I worked with eager hands—at first. My hands were not so eager after a while. There’s something about ripping out seams over and over again that makes the work a little less rewarding. My lack of sewing talent was one factor that led me to avoid studying Proverbs 31, but as I look at it now, it seems to me that the words that stand out are not wool and flax, but selects and eager. It reminds me of the following story. While on a trip several years ago, my sister and her family passed over a toll bridge, and my nieces

400 Edition

began to comment on what a boring job it would be to work in a toll booth. “My motto,” my sister told her girls, “is to find a way to have fun in any situation.” After some thoughtful consideration, her six-year-old daughter replied, “My motto is ‘shoes can make or break your outfit’!” My sister’s motto goes hand in hand with the part of the verse that says, “she works with eager hands.” But I really love my niece’s response. At six years old, she wasn’t interested in having a good attitude while doing something she found monotonous. Her thoughts were on something that interested her, and I think this goes along with the verse as well. Before we’re told that the Proverbs 31 woman works eagerly, we read that she selects her materials. I believe I’ve missed out on some opportunities God has given me through the years to do something I was created to do because I’ve felt compelled to do things I thought I should do. When I finally gave up sewing, I discovered I could save money and dress my daughter attractively by shopping at consignment sales. This discovery prompted me to do something I’d always wanted to do. I submitted an article about consignment sales to a parenting magazine. They May 2010 •

printed the article and I began writing for them on a regular basis. While the job of clothing my daughter was being accomplished more effectively than ever, I was able to devote time and energy to something for which I was much better suited. In his book, Today Matters, John Maxwell writes of the importance of focusing on your areas of strength. “Any time something seems to be all ‘trial,’ and you make a lot of mistakes, it’s probably time to move on,” says Maxwell, “but you’ve got to take the risk of failing to find your successes.” As a wife and mother, I have certain responsibilities, but God has graciously given me an opportunity to be creative in how I fulfill them. I believe He is delighted when we explore the areas of strength He has placed in us. The more I study the 31st chapter of Proverbs, the more I’m finding that it’s the very opposite of what I had assumed. Instead of narrowing the definition of a virtuous wife, these verses seem to emphasize and celebrate the unique areas of giftedness God has placed in each of us. Martha Hynson is a wife, mom, teacher, and freelance writer from Watkinsville, Georgia.

Your Vision Source! D

id you know that women are more affected by eye diseases and disorders than are men? Every year more females than males are diagnosed with cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and dry eye syndrome. According to the 2008 study conducted by Prevent Blindness America and the National Eye Institute, more than 3.6 million Americans age 40 and over have some type of visual impairment, including blindness. And of that 3.6 million, nearly 2.3 million are women. Conditions that affect women more than men are often age-related. This is due to the fact that, on average, women tend to have higher life expectancies than men. Some of the conditions that are typically agerelated are cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration. A cataract is a clouding of the vision. It affects the lens inside the eye and can be treated with eye surgery. Glaucoma is often called “the silent thief of sight.” The main cause of glaucoma is damage to the optic nerve caused by increased eye pressure. It affects the peripheral vision first and is generally not noticed by the patient until it affects the central vision. Eye pressurelowering medications can slow the progression of glaucoma. Agerelated macular degeneration affects the macula, which gives the central fine-detail part of vision; thus this disease causes difficulty in tasks such as reading and driving. Hormonal imbalances also play a part in women’s eye health. Women experience changes in their vision throughout their lives due to hormonal changes, such as those that occur during pregnancy, menopause, use of birth control medications, hormone replacement therapy, and fertility treatments. Changes in hormones can alter your eyeglass or contact lens prescription. Hormones can also cause an increase in dry eyes and swelling of the cornea, and can cause contact lens intolerance. Dry eye during pregnancy typically goes away after giving birth or after nursing. Lubricating drops or artificial tears can be used for dry eye and are perfectly safe to use while you are pregnant or nursing.

by Dr. Joyce M. Nations

Dry eyes are a very common disorder among menopausal women. Menopause causes hormone fluctuations and can disrupt chemical signals. When hormones decrease, inflammation can occur and lead to a decrease in the production of tears. A decrease in androgen and estrogen is believed to have a large impact on dry eye patients. Androgen and estrogen receptors are located in the lacrimal and meibomian glands, which are responsible for tear production. Older women who are post menopausal and receiving hormone replacement therapy may be at an increased risk for cataracts. Autoimmune disorders tend to occur more in women than in men. Dry eye syndrome can be an inflammatory condition and can sometimes be linked to autoimmune disorders. Lifestyle differences can also cause concern for women. More women tend to wear contact lenses than men. Improper care of contact lenses can cause infections and scarring of the cornea. Makeup can cause contact lens-related issues as well. Improper removal of makeup can cause deposits and possibly infections of the eye. Women who are diabetic or those who develop gestational diabetes need to keep a close check on their vision. Blurred vision can occur when blood sugar levels are elevated. Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can cause changes in eyeglass prescriptions, and also cause swelling and bleeding in the retina. Since women are more susceptible to vision-threatening diseases and disorders, it is highly recommended that all women have a yearly eye examination, especially those age 40 or older. If you have any eye disease or eye-related problems or concerns, contact your local optometrist for an evaluation. Dr. Nations practices at Cherokee Eye Group at 591 East Main Street in Canton, and at Dawson Eye Group at 5983 Hwy. 53 East, Suite 250, in Dawsonville. She received her Doctor of Optometry degree and her Masters of Public Health degree in 1993 from the University of Alabama. She is a member of the American Optometric Association, Georgia Optometric Association, and Vision Source. May 2010 •

400 Edition

Hummers Returning by Linda May

After wintering in Mexico and Central America, ruby-throated hummingbirds are appearing again in Georgia! Welcome them with some fresh sugar solution in a clean hummingbird feeder (basin style feeders are easier to keep clean than the inverted bottle kind). Just dissolve one part sugar in four parts water and cool before filling your feeder. You can also provide nutrition by planting nectarproducing flowers. Plants that have red or orange tubular-shaped blooms (like trumpet creeper, crossvine, coral honeysuckle, and salvia) are especially attractive. Hummingbirds also eat soft-bodied insects and spiders, so refrain from using pesticides in your yard if possible. Linda May is the environmental outreach coordinator with the Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division.

10 400 Edition

Gardening Tasks: May by Walter Reeves


grow in an upright tree form.

• No matter which grass, your turf will look its best if you follow a calendar of maintenance tasks. See www. for lawn care articles. • Treat for azalea lace bugs if you’ve had problems in the past. Insecticidal soap, horticultural oil, and synthetic insecticide chemicals all work well, sprayed under the leaves. • Look for tiny “toothpicks” on the trunk of your Japanese maple, Kwansan cherry, and other small landscape trees. The Asian ambrosia beetle is spreading death-dealing fungus inside the trunk. • Plant begonias, coleus, geraniums, petunias, and vinca for summer-long color in your landscape. • Fill the ruts and low spots in your lawn with a 1:1 mixture of sand and topsoil. Sweep with a broom afterwards to expose growing grass blades.


• Apply Bacillus thuringiensis to cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower to ward off cabbage looper caterpillar damage as these plants mature. • Snip off sprouts from the base and lower trunk of crepe myrtles that are being trained to

• Remove leafless limbs from shade trees. If they don’t have leaves by now, they won’t be coming back. • Dig, divide, and transplant your crowded irises to a better location, if needed, after they bloom. • Prune early-flowering azaleas now that they have finished blooming. Remove tall sprouts at their base, inside the shrub.


• Pinch out the growing tips of rhododendron limbs now that flowers are gone. You’ll get many more flowers next year. • Plant rosemary, basil, oregano, dill, and other herbs for savory summer meals.

• Place a newspaper mulch 10 sheets thick under tomato plants to prevent leaf diseases. Cover with pine straw. • Plant corn, squash, beans, and peas now that the soil is quite warm. Make another planting of corn in two weeks. • Drill a one-eighth-inch hole in the cap of a two-liter soft drink bottle. Fill the bottle, cap it, and upend it in the soil of your patio plants to slowly water them during the day.

May 2010 •


• Control fire ants by lightly scattering a bait over your lawn. Forty-eight hours later, use an insecticide on any large mounds you can see. Repeat in September. • Get in the habit of wearing a hat and sunscreen whenever you work in the sun. Skin cancer cases are on the rise. • Plants need an inch of water per week. What’s an inch of water? If rainfall or irrigation fills an empty soup can to a depth of one inch, that’s just what plants need. • Don’t put rocks in the bottom of houseplant pots. They actually decrease drainage and aeration for the plant roots. • The best time to water is between 10:00pm and 10:00am. This allows the grass to dry before nightfall the next day and prevents disease. Walter Reeves hosts a radio call-in show on WSB-AM every Saturday morning from 6:00 to 10:00am. He is the host of Your Southern Garden on GPB and writes a weekly column in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Get answers to your garden questions at www.

Summer Camps! R

egistering early will ensure your spot! Register now at the Cumming FUMC offiice: 770 Canton Hwy in Cumming, GA 30040. Download the summer camps brochure at , or call 770-887-2900 for more information. All camps are for rising grades (2010/2011 school year).

Vacation Bible School

Grades K-6: June 7-11, 9am-noon, cost: $15

dAygLo Drama Camp

Grades 1-3: June 14-18, 9am-noon, cost: $100

We Are His Hands

Grades 3-6: June 16-18, 9am-2pm, cost: $50

“I see a museum” - Great Masterpieces of Europe Art to Heart Camp

Grades K-2: June 21-25 or July 5-9 Grades 3-6: July 12-16 9am-2pm; cost: $150

Camp Extreme: He calls me Friend

Grades 3-6, July 6-10: July 6-8, 9am-2pm; Lock-in July 9 (6pm)- July10 (8am); cost: $100

Science Camp

Grades 1-6: July 26-30, 9am-3pm, cost: $215

Basketball / Cheer Camp Grades K-5: July 12-16, 9am-noon, cost: $100

Cooking Camp

Grade 3-6: July 26-28, 9am-2pm; cost: $125

Help Make Dahlonega’s 4th of July Celebration Happen in 2010!


o you remember being a child and what the 4th of July meant—hot dogs, watermelon, parades, flags waving, and fun with family and friends while you waited until it got dark enough for the fireworks? Then you sat watching the skies with anticipation as you heard the swoosh of the rocket and the ooohs and ahhhs at the burst of light and sparkles. Thanks to the 4th of July Family Day Celebration, that is what still happens in Dahlonega. The day is filled with fun activities—a pet show (we’ve had dogs, cats, pigs, and chickens in the show), a patriotic ceremony on the lawn of the Gold Museum, the annual reading of the U.S. Constitution on the courthouse steps, a watermelon cutting by the Boy Scouts, an antique auto show, and musicians filling the square with diverse sounds of bluegrass, folk, and country music. The Independence Day Parade through the historic square begins around 5:00pm and ends just in time to find a spot on the nearby drill field of North Georgia College & State University to await the fireworks. What a great way to celebrate our nation’s birthday. And we need your help. We would like for you, as part

of our community, to support this wonderful celebration. It takes finances (about $18,000) and coordination to plan this wonderful day. We are part of a committee that is spearheading this effort. Sponsorship opportunities have been established for companies and individuals. Please decide what you can do to help. We would greatly appreciate your generous financial support for this most worthy project. Together we can celebrate the birth of our great nation and build memories for our children. Don’t miss the opportunity to promote your business to visitors and locals alike during Dahlonega’s 4th of July Family Celebration. This festival, including the fireworks, brings families out from our local community as well as many visitors from Atlanta and many other North Georgia cities. To be a sponsor, please contact the Dahlonega-Lumpkin County Chamber of Commerce at 706864-3711, or Tony Owens, Chair of this community committee, at The Fudge Factory in downtown Dahlonega. We thank you in advance for your support. It takes an entire community to make these special, memorable events happen. May 2010 •

400 Edition


akota Cove’s twelve-thousandsquare-foot showroom does not sit at the base of the Teton Mountains, but it would fit right in there. Packed inside and out with furnishings that will transform your Georgia home into a showcase, it brings a bit of Wyoming to you. I believe we would all like to have at least one room dedicated to the classic design of a Wyoming ranch. Why not a whole house full? Should this be the case with you, then you’ll love shopping at Lakota Cove’s huge showroom. You may not live in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, or in Yellowstone Park, but you won’t know it until you walk outside. There are some Georgia home sites that may even require driving a little way down the road to tell the difference. What a showroom, what a shopping experience. Hopefully, these photos will pique your interest and bring you out. The lens of the camera is limited, but your eyes will be full of settings, styles, and layouts designed to

12 400 Edition

help you make your own personal selections. Make your own list, room by room, and bring it with you. Owner Linda Magness will help you work through your list, and as a professional designer, can offer help you might need. The professional staff is eager to serve you, and they ship anywhere in the United States. Yes, their reputation

is known nationwide. Being close has its advantage, and that advantage is yours. You can see the Indian influence in the surrounding settings, from paintings to dreamcatchers. The men’s restroom is designed to show you just what a painted wall mural can do to enhance something as blah as the powder room. The women’s restroom has some attention-getting ideas also. The showroom is immense, so plan on spending a lot of time, knowing that whatever you buy can be in your house on your schedule. How you welcome your friends into your home is important; it says a lot about you. I like the bears surrounding the vacant chair, because it says

May 2010 •

“welcome.” Look at the classic yard furniture, especially the chairs and benches that invite your guests to stay a little longer. If you get a little hungry, you are invited into Jim Magness’ kitchen for cookies or sandwiches with coffee, Coke, or hot apple cider. Your business is important to them, so expect to be treated like it. For email directions, call 1-770893-3495. See their ad in this issue, and tell them you saw them in 400 Edition. Check out their website at www.

Summer Basketball Camps


orth Georgia Elite Basketball will be hosting summer basketball camps for boys and girls grades Pre K-12, ages 4 to 18, at East Hall Community Center and Mulberry Park Community Center in South Hall. This will be a series of six one-week camps, teaching the kids elite skills such as dribbling, shooting, passing, footwork, and team play. Camps start June 14; register before June 1 for the early-

bird cost of $150. Each camp is limited to the first 36 players who sign up. All camps will be personally taught by current professional basketball player Adrian Penland and former University of Virginia starting point guard Chezley Watson. For more information visit www. or call Chezley Watson at 770-654-4516 or Adrian Penland at 770-598-4596.

North Georgia Youth Chorale Completes Premiere Season


he North Georgia Youth Chorale is a brand new non-profit organization that hopes to capitalize on two ideals its community holds in high regard: an appreciation for the fine arts, and supporting young people. The mission of the organization is to pursue musical excellence that enhances the life of the singer and the listener. The North Georgia Youth Chorale is devoted to the process of making quality music, but more importantly, strives to make a difference in the lives of children and young adults. Founded in January 2009 by two local music educators, the North Georgia Youth Chorale is not only committed to endorsing the arts, but also desires to nurture the true joy of singing in each child who joins. Mrs. Donna Bailey has been a music educator for over thirtyfive years and has directed chorale ensembles of all ages. Her diverse experience includes teaching and directing in public school, private school, community choirs, and church choirs. Mrs. McKenzi Fenn has been a choral director and music teacher since 2003 and has taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. She has extensive experience with community children’s choirs as both a participant and a conductor. Both directors hope to nurture in children a passion for choral music, and also want to help young singers gain solid vocal training, develop music literacy skills, and grow in their understanding of musical concepts. Additionally, they hope that artistic expression will be developed as students are taught to pursue musical excellence. Currently in its inaugural season, the North Georgia Youth Chorale consists of approximately 30 singers

from Grades 4-12. The organization presently offers one choir for children in Grades 4-8, and another choir for high school participants. Additionally, both ensembles perform together on selected numbers during each concert. The choir holds weekly rehearsals on Tuesday evenings at 6:00pm, and additionally on weekends as needed. Artistic and personal growth are celebrated at the end of each semester with a Concert Celebration, and additional performances are given throughout North Georgia. Auditions were held in the summer of 2009, and the choirs performed their first selections together on August 15, 2009, after an all-day kick-off rehearsal. In addition to their Winter Concert: Sing for Joy!, other community concerts included a performance at the Forsyth Family Fest in September of 2009, and two different concerts at White Oaks Nursing Facility in December of the same year. Concerts during the current semester have included a feature performance at Barnes & Noble during “Exceptional Children’s Week,” and singing on the center stage at Midway Park’s grand opening celebration. The choir is also scheduled to perform during a worship service for a local congregation in April, and their first season will come to a close with their Spring Concert and Celebration on May 2. This concert will be held at 3:00pm at Cornerstone Christian Church in Dawsonville. Auditions for the 2010-2011 season will be held in May. For further information concerning this spring’s auditions, contact the choir at or 770-789-1144. May 2010 •

400 Edition 13

Community College: Benefits and Pitfalls

Mind and heart mind & heart


his topic constitutes a sequel of sorts to an earlier article of mine (“Casualties of Comfort: The Lost Boys”) addressing the issue of emotional readiness for college. Recent statistics have disclosed that present economic times have resulted in an increasing number of students choosing to begin their college careers in local community colleges, many of these schools offering terminal two-year associate’s (A.A.) degrees. At that point, the student may then elect to transfer to a four-year college to complete a baccalaureate (bachelor’s) degree. Some local examples of the former institutions would be Georgia Perimeter College and Gainesville State College. There appear to be a number of sound, practical reasons for many students to begin college in this fashion. From a financial standpoint, the costs of completing the requisite “core” college course requirements that take up much or most of the first two years of college are almost universally much lower at the community college level and, if these are later transferable to a four-year college anyway, the student is not placed at any substantive academic disadvantage. Furthermore, many four-year colleges (University of Georgia, for example) are easier for some students to qualify for as a transferring sophomore or junior than as an entering freshman, highlighting the opportunity of using the first 1-2 years at a local community college to improve one’s grade point average to a more competitive level prior to entering a four-year college. Additional financial advantage can be gained by the student

14 400 Edition

electing to continue to live in his parents’ home and commute to the local community college, thereby saving considerable room and board costs and providing the experience of continuing to mature around the family of origin rather than on one’s own. To be sure, some have argued (in my opinion, accurately in many respects) that going away to college straight after high school accelerates this maturing process for many students and imparts at least a limited sense of independent living and emotional emancipation from the parents. Furthermore, as a number of my own clients have reported, the local community college option, carried out while continuing to live with one’s parents, can for some feel emotionally more like a continuation of high school than a step forward in independence and maturity. At this juncture in the discussion, the tie-in with the aforementioned earlier article about college and emotional maturity seems to be relevant. While it seems quite apparent that upon graduation from high school, many students are neither academically or financially in a position to qualify for and/or succeed at a four-year college, at least not initially, there are also important developmental and emotional considerations in play that are just as important as the academic and financial ones. Some students simply seem to need an extra year or two beyond high school to mature to the point where they can prioritize their studies, clarify future goals, perhaps continue to work part-time in the community, etc., before they are truly ready for more independent functioning. If May 2010 •

Mark P. Feinsilber, Ph.D.

handled properly by the student’s family, this option can be a safe and progressive growth experience that serves as a “maturity bridge” between high school and four-year, live-away college. In my view, it is the responsibility of the student’s parents to negotiate a pragmatic and functional living arrangement or contract with their son or daughter at this life stage; one that promotes increased responsibility, accountability, and more adult-like contribution to the running of the household. In this way, all parties concerned will be in a better strategic position to avoid the trap of extending the high school life stage beyond its proper time and thereby can create a true, distinct developmental stage for the student needing such a transition. Mark P. Feinsilber, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist with over 20 years’ experience treating adults, children, adolescents, couples, and families; and is a founding member of the Behavioral Health Association of Forsyth (BHAF). His practice is located at 6030 Bethelview Road, Suite 401, in Cumming. Appointments or other consultations can be arranged by calling the administrative office at 770-205-5760, and more detailed information can be found at

Happy Mother’s Day As an adult, I have found that I still need that motherly advice and love. I have that in a good friend, Becky Holbrook. She is the best mother, and has welcomed me as an extension of her family. Love to Becky from your adopted daughter, Vikki Condrey

NORTHSIDE HOSPITAL Every Second Counts: Learn the signs and symptoms of stroke

To Your Health

by Roshan Khaki, R.D., L.D., C.D.E., coordinator, Northside Hospital Diabetes and Nutrition Education Program Whether you are a man or woman, no matter your race, in the prime of life or enjoying your golden years, you may be at risk for a stroke. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, stroke is the third leading cause of death in Georgia. The best protection for you and your loved ones against this potentially debilitating and life-threatening event is to know the warning signs and symptoms of stroke and receive prompt medical assistance when they appear, because every minute counts.

What is a Stroke?

A stroke occurs when the brain’s blood supply is suddenly obstructed, cutting off the flow of nutrients and oxygen needed for the brain to function, and resulting in the death of brain cells. It can be brought on by a blockage or clot in the blood vessels that lead to the brain (ischemic stroke) or, less common, when a blood vessel bursts and bleeds into the brain (hemorrhagic stroke).

Warning Signs and Symptoms

Stroke is a life-threatening emergency and should be treated with the same urgency as a heart attack. The good news is that when medical attention is sought within the first three hours of the onset of symptoms, treatments are available to reduce disability and save lives. If you or a loved one experiences any of the following warning signs and symptoms, call 9-1-1 immediately. • Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding • Sudden trouble seeing with one or both eyes • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, or loss of balance or coordination • Sudden severe headache with no known cause

Free Stroke Screenings Northside Hospital is offering free screenings to determine risk for stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. Screenings will be administered by health care professionals and will include a risk assessment, blood pressure reading, total cholesterol (HDL, ratio of TC/HDL), glucose, a limited number of carotid ultrasounds, and a one-on-one consultation with a healthcare professional.

Saturday, May 8

9:00am-12:00pm Northside Hospital Outpatient Center at Meridian Mark 5445 Meridian Mark Road, Suite 100, Atlanta

Sunday, May 15

9:00am-12:00pm Northside Hospital-Forsyth, Classrooms A & B 1400 Northside Forsyth Drive, Cumming

The screenings are free, but registration is required. Call 404-845-5555 and press “0” to schedule an appointment.

May 2010 •

400 Edition 15


The Many Faces of A Mother by Vanessa McBrayer

When Linda Merritt, Editor of 400 Edition, asked me to write this article for Mother’s Day I had no idea how deeply it would affect me. Interviewing and writing about these eleven incredible mothers has inspired me more than words can express. Each one was carefully selected for a special reason, to show that there are many different faces of a mother, but the job description remains the same: to love and be loved unconditionally. Jessica Beck Jessica Beck is a patient mother of six. Their ages range from 2 to 18. She lives in Dahlonega with her husband Terry. She feels that she was always meant to have a houseful of kids running around. She says the best part of being a mother of six is that it is never boring. She loves having a large family, especially during the holidays. Easter is her favorite. She goes all out by inviting her entire family over and having the adults all pitch in to help hide up to a thousand eggs every year. Each child collects 60-150 eggs during the massive hunt. She finds ways to save money by reusing all of the plastic eggs and other holiday decorations. The children enjoy searching through the holiday bin every year for the decorations they want to use for their birthday party. She finds time for herself at the end of a long day after the kids are put to bed. This is when she recharges her batteries and prepares for the day ahead. She says the keys to keeping her household running smoothly are staying organized, keeping to a schedule, and having the children help with the household chores. Each one has his or her own designated chores appropriate to their age, and they each take pride in the job they do. Even her 2-year-old helps to put away laundry and groceries. Teaching them a sense of responsibility is one of her main goals. Her quick-thinking mom skills came into play after I was stung by a bee during her interview. She quickly grabbed a can of disinfectant spray and sprayed my knee, like a mom who had a lot of experience with scrapes and bruises! Being a full-time mom is who she is and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Lisa Bennett


Lisa is a dedicated mother of four and the Assistant Director of Special Education for Forsyth County. She oversees all of the special needs programs in the county. She has been married to Scott for 22 years and they make their home in Cumming. They have four children (three girls and one boy) between the ages of 9 and 19. One of her children was a foster child they’ve had from age 3 and adopted at age 6. They have fostered a total of nine children to date. The hardest situation that they’ve faced as foster parents occurred after taking in a 4-month-old baby and caring for him until he was 18 months old, then having to let him go. Lisa says that letting go is the hardest part of being a foster parent. She strived to do the best she could for them while they were with her and prayed that God would take care of them after they left. Lisa feels a strong urge to help children, which is why she was a special needs teacher for 20 years. Even though she is no longer in the classroom working with children, which is what she loves to do, she knows that the position that she’s in now gives her the ability to help many more children. An interesting part of Lisa’s childhood is that she grew up living in Ingram’s Funeral Home, which her family owned. She says that is where she learned compassion for others. Children with special needs inspire her with their overall optimism, innocence, and trust. She balances her time for work and home by keeping them separate so that she can give 100% to each. She says that her children have learned great life lessons from their experiences as a foster family. They’ve learned to not take certain things in life for granted because they’ve witnessed firsthand how some children are less fortunate. Through Lisa’s eyes, motherhood means molding the children that she’s been given into the best people that they can be, for themselves and for others. Lisa finds time for herself by teaching aerobics classes two or three times a week. She says that every mother needs alone time once in a while to refuel, because without it she will have nothing left to give, at the expense of her family. She says it’s like the old saying: “If momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” In the Bennett household, dinnertime is family time. Lisa makes dinner the night before and the older children are in charge of heating it up after they get home from school the next day. Lisa leans on her faith to help her through the hard times and thanks God for the patience, understanding, and ability to handle it all. Most of all she says that she is so thankful to have her perfect counterpart for a husband and couldn’t do it without him.

Teresa Conowal Teresa is an amazing mother of five boys. She and her husband Chris live in Dawsonville, where they raise their blended family. Along with being a dedicated mother, she is also a secondgrade teacher in Dawsonville, where she has taught for 17 years and was recently named Kilough Elementary’s “Teacher of the Year.” She became a teacher because she wanted to give back to her community and help create a better place for all of us to live. She says that it is hard to imagine being rewarded for doing something that she loves so much. She believes that she and her students form a classroom family. Her favorite part of being a mom is having the opportunity to raise five great men. Her favorite part of the day is coming home to be greeted by her boys, who run to her and tell her how much they missed her. She learns from them by seeing the world through five different perspectives. They’ve also taught her to love more than she ever thought imaginable. She says that the hardest part of being a mom is finding the balance between nurturing and letting go. To find time for each other, Teresa and her husband Chris who is an attorney, have to get out the calendar, mark a date, and hire two babysitters. They are partners in parenthood and best friends in everything. Dinnertime in the Conowal household leaves Teresa feeling like one of those roller-skating waitresses from the old days, who skate around making sure everyone has what they need, including the two little ones who are still in highchairs. Then comes bath time, when she feels like she is a human car wash with one dirty child after the other driving through, each one coming out clean on the other side. Teresa considers her own mother a shining example of what it is to be a mother. Teresa and Chris’ rock-solid goals are to raise happy, healthy, empathetic young men who will have compassion for others, and will embrace life with an unyielding resilience and zest that will keep their ships sailing through the rough waters that may lie ahead of them.

Jan be fam the sh the pia wh tha qu mo wi tha for Jan ea ab tha for wh ho tha sh sp sh so tha Sh to ho in tha rec wa ab


Da 5be Sh co du Af a wh to th ho th ac wa wh wa he an W du he th th lo an m th re to th ex

anice Darnell


nice is a busy mother of a teenage son and has een married to Scott for 22 years. The Darnell mily lives in Dawsonville, where Janice is e Director for Student Support, which means he coordinates various programs that support e students and schools. Janice also plays the ano at First Baptist Church of Dawsonville, here they attend every Sunday. Janice feels at she sometimes falls short of some of the ualities that make a good mother; but the ost important thing is that she loves her son ith all her heart and makes sure that he hears those words every day. She says at her son is unaccustomed to some behaviors that are considered “normal” r other moms. Homemade meals or cookies are few and far between, since nice’s job does not leave her with much time for cooking. She says that they at out probably far too often, but the time spent sitting across the table talking bout the events of the day is far more important than the meal itself. She says at because of her job, her son has spent countless hours after school waiting r her to finish up her work, or going with her to ball games and concerts in hich he was not a participant. He has had to catch a ride to his grandmother’s ouse with a coworker from school so Janice can stay late at work more times an she can count, and has spent several nights with his grandparents because he sometimes has to travel. Through all of this, she says that he has been a great port. The most difficult part of being a mother for Amy is the realization that he has made and will continue to make mistakes. The lesson that she wants her on to learn while she learns it herself is that mistakes are going to happen and at poor decisions will be made, but they do not have to determine who you are. he wants him to always know that God loves and forgives us and the best thing do is to forgive yourself, pay attention to the lesson learned, and move on. She opes that through their religion, her son will always know that he is never alone this world because God lives in his heart and will never forsake him. She says at her son is the most precious gift that she has ever been given or will ever ceive. She feels blessed to have been given her son to hold and rock when he as a baby, to teach and cheer for as he grows and matures, to always worry bout and be proud of, and best of all, to love and be loved by.

ana Jones



Sharon Keating

Sharon is a proud mother of three grown sons and the owner of Serenity Spa in Dawsonville, located behind the outlets. She is also a breast cancer survivor. She has been married nearly 27 years to Dr. Keating of Keating Family Medicine in Dawsonville, located next door to her Spa. The couple first met at a hospital in Virginia, where Sharon worked as a nurse, and were married eight short months later. The couple has lived in Dawsonville for 7 years. Sharon’s approach to raising her sons was doing anything and everything she could for them but also teaching them to stand on their own two feet. Some of her greatest joys have been experiencing life through her children’s eyes. She has learned so much about life through sharing in their accomplishments and failures. She says that having three sons was always an adventure. One of her favorite memories with them is a trip that they took to Phoenix, Arizona, during which they rented a jeep and drove through the desert down the 120-mile Apache Trail, a treacherous road carved into the mountainside and the site of many Western movies. Now that her sons are grown, most of their time together consists of family dinners a couple of times a month. All three sons help with dishes, then the family talks for hours. Helping with the dishes is something that their father taught them to do from an early age. Sharon held them responsible for their own laundry from age 10, which was part of her helping them to become self-sufficient. Sharon stayed home with her sons until the youngest one started school, and then she went back to nursing. Even then, she always made her sons her first priority, never missing a ball game. She is so thankful to have a close relationship with her sons even now that they are grown, and is also thankful to be welcoming a daughter-in-law into the family next month, and says that she will be the daughter Sharon never had but never really missed.

ana is a caring mother of her first baby, a -month-old baby boy named Carter. She has een married to Sgt. Chris Jones for 2 years. he is originally from Dawsonville. The ouple first met when Chris was on leave uring his first deployment to Afghanistan. fter he went back, they kept in touch and had long-distance relationship. She was pregnant hile he was on his second deployment o Afghanistan. The couple was extremely hankful that Sgt. Jones not only made it ome safely, but was also just in time for he birth of their son. It was a close call; he ctually arrived only one day before Carter as born. She says that she feels someone was watching over them because she doesn’t know hat she would’ve done without him there. The worst part of her husband being away at war as her constant worry for his safety, and all of the milestones throughout her pregnancy that e missed out on. He didn’t get to be there for the ultrasounds, hearing the baby’s heartbeat, nd her late-night cravings; but at least he was there to welcome their new son into the world. While Chris was away fighting the war on terror, he was wounded in action but remained on uty while he healed. The family is home for now (stationed in Fort Campbell, Kentucky) but e will have to redeploy sooner than the new family would like. They dread the separation and he worry that redeployment brings, and they hate the thoughts of Chris missing out on some of he most special times ahead. Values that the Joneses will try to instill in their son are honesty, oyalty, the importance of hard work, treating others the way that he would want to be treated, nd always having faith in God. Dana says it’s the little things that Carter does that mean the most: when he smiles, laughs, reaches his arms out to her when she walks into the room; and here’s joy in just watching him grow. To her, motherhood means knowing that she has the great esponsibility of teaching her precious son right from wrong and praying that he will grow up o be a strong-willed, good-hearted man like his father. She hopes that their son will learn from hem respect and love, the importance of having goals, and to work for what you have and not xpect something for nothing.


Mary Otway

Mary is a wonderful mother of three. She is also a grandmother, and a great grandmother. She is 107 years old. She was married to her husband Frank for 69 years and has lived in Dahlonega for 50 years. She is originally from Hell’s Kitchen, New York. Her husband was an interior designer, actor, and model, and Mary was a teacher who modeled as well but stayed home after she had her children. She says that the difference between giving birth to babies then and now is that then, it was typical for a new mother to stay in the hospital around two weeks after giving birth. She says that it was always her greatest ambition to be the best wife and mother that she could be. Her favorite memory is the birth of her first child. He was so beautiful and was what she had wanted for so long. He recently passed away at the age of 84. They were very close and she says that she still feels his presence. The doctor told her that she should not have any more children after him, but she had two more children, daughters born seven years apart, and they are still living. She says that the key to a long life is to just get up every morning. Throughout her life she has always put others first, but now she is learning to put herself first. A friend of hers who recently passed away told her that she was the best friend that anyone could ever have, but that she would hate to have her for an enemy. She told me that sometimes people make her feel like a novelty because of her age. I assured her that she was not a novelty, but an inspiration.


Amy Roberts


Katie Owen

Katie is an adoring mother of two beautiful daughters age 11 and 14. She has been married to Guy for eighteen years and they live in Cumming. They own a restaurant called “The Blue Bicycle” in Dawsonville, where they both work. Owning their own restaurant gives them the opportunity to see much more of each other and gives their daughters the chance to see firsthand how they earn “the bread on the table.” Their daughters have their own responsibilities at the restaurant. They clear and set tables, shine silverware, ring up checks at the cash register, and help make desserts. Just as with the chores at home, it takes everyone to make it happen. They spend their down time together too. They enjoy movies, go on hikes, and eat out. After a typical dinner at home, the family will oftentimes stay at the table an hour after they’ve finished eating, just talking, laughing, or playing an impromptu brain game that involves a globe or dictionary. Katie thinks the best part of being a mom is watching them grow up and make good decisions, experiencing their sense of humor, and watching their friendships evolve. The hardest part for her is having the typical “mom guilt” for buying a birthday cake instead of baking it, or trivializing a problem they had, then realizing later that it was something that really mattered to them. She hopes that her daughters will learn from her example to use their minds, not their looks; to love themselves first; to do their best and always try hard; and that being a loving, caring person is a strength, not a weakness. For Katie, family always comes first, but work is important too; therefore the Owens spend a lot of time blending the two together. Katie views motherhood as the female half of parenthood. She says that she and her husband are here to guide, advise, buffer, and filter, and then stand back—sometimes with a box of Band-Aids!

Amy is an incredible mother of one bright, outgoing son who is 9 years old. She has been married to Sam for 12 years and they live in Cleveland near beautiful Mt. Yonah. The two of them met while whitewater rafting on the Ocoee River; Sam was the guide. He later proposed during one of their exciting rafting experiences. Three years later, the couple was blessed with their son Max River Roberts. Up until his third grade in school, Amy worked as a teacher in the same school that Max attended. Last year, the couple decided to homeschool Max because he needed a faster pace and was losing his love for learning. Amy felt that in public schools, precious time is sometimes wasted on disruptive children and their discipline, and on class changes. Max’s eagerness to learn and be challenged was Amy’s incentive to bring him home, where his school is not made of bricks and mortar, but it is still a school—with the added bonus that he has time for other unique opportunities, such as acting in films and plays. Max is a well-rounded child through all of his supplemental activities, such as piano and voice lessons— and competition kayaking counts as P.E.! Amy finds time for herself on Mondays when Sam teaches science and history while she has the day off. The rest of the week Amy is Max’s mom but also his teacher. She teaches him his lessons at his own pace, moving along to something new the moment that Max “gets it,” or focusing longer on a subject that he becomes intrigued by. They take healthy snack breaks, do yoga, and garden throughout the course of a regular school day. For field trips, they visit the High Museum of Art, The Center for Puppetry Arts, and Gainesville Theatre Alliance plays. The best part about homeschooling for Max’s parents is being an influential part of his education, and being able to watch him learn new things. As a family, they feel fortunate to live near so many majestic hiking trails and rivers, and every weekend usually brings with it a new adventure. For Amy, motherhood means being there full-time because there is no time off for mothers. To respect Mother Nature, be kind to others, keep a level head in any situation, always believe in himself, and dream BIG are some of the values that Amy and Sam hope that Max will take with him while he floats along this river of life.

Mo Wendy Sundgren

Wendy is a devoted mother of two young boys. Jackson is 8 and Hudson is 4. She has been married for 15 years to her wonderful husband Chris and lives in Cumming. Her youngest son, Hudson, is severely handicapped and terminally ill. He was a healthy, happy baby until he was 6 months old, when he was diagnosed with hip dysplasia. He had surgery to repair it, then wore a cast for three months. When the cast came off, Wendy began to think something could be wrong when he did not recover normally. At 11 months, he had his first seizure. A couple of months later, he was diagnosed with Multi Complex Mitochondrial Disease. In a person with Mitochondrial Disease, the mitochondria, which exists in nearly every cell, cannot convert food and oxygen into life-sustaining energy. There is no cure for the disease and no real treatments for a case as severe as Hudson’s. He vomits and has seizures throughout every day. Hudson had a seizure during my interview with Wendy. She gently caressed his arm and talked to him in a calming voice, but there was really nothing else that she could do. The worst form of seizures that he has are called Blue Seizures, during which he stops breathing and turns blue. These are extremely disturbing to the Sundgren family and Wendy refers to them as her “blue days.” Hudson is an adorable boy but he cannot walk, talk, or move much, and is almost completely blind. He does, however, smile when spoken to in a sweet voice, and will coo when his mother says “Good morning” at the start of a new day. The doctors give Wendy and her family no hope of recovery or improvement for Hudson. To her, having no hope is the hardest part of all. Wendy devotes every bit of herself to caring for him and making him feel loved. At the end of the day, she holds him until he falls asleep on her chest and knows that he feels their connection as strongly as she does. Her older son Jackson is a healthy and bright 8-year-old who excels in school, plays lacrosse, and plays the piano. Even though her two boys are at opposite ends of the spectrum, she says that she feels the same joy when Hudson simply smiles as she does when Jackson catches a ball or does something amazing. Jackson is a great older brother and loves to help out with Hudson. He even pushes his brother’s wheelchair through the grocery store while she pushes the grocery cart. Some of her fondest moments are when she sneaks a peak in her rearview mirror and sees Jackson holding Hudson’s hand, talking to him, or giving him a kiss. She says that her experiences as a mother have made her a stronger, wiser, kinder, and more compassionate person. Regarding motherhood itself, she says that she feels like she is a mother bear that would do anything to protect her cubs. She says that it is a complete and total love beyond imagination and a beautiful sacrifice of her life. My biggest question of all for Wendy was, “How do you cope?” She said that sometimes, after an especially difficult day or after looking at pictures of Hudson as a once normal baby smiling at the camera, she does break down. She will cry in the bathtub or vent to family members. After Hudson was first diagnosed, Wendy got really depressed; but one morning she woke up and made a conscious decision to be healthy, to focus on the positive for her sons, and not to let her difficult situation define her. She knows that no matter what, as long as she does her best, that is all she can do and there is comfort in knowing that. For more information about Mitochondrial Disease visit, or to donate, visit

Candice Neighbours I saved the best for last—my own mom. Candice is a loving mother of me (28) and my brother (22). She has been married for nearly 30 years to my dad, Wayne. They live in Dawsonville, where I was born and raised. She has been a nurse for 15 years and is currently working at a cardiology doctor’s office. Being a nurse is the profession that best suits her, because she loves to take care of people. My mom has always been a working mom. I remember a period during my childhood when she went to school, worked full-time, took care of us, and took care of her sister who had cancer. Her ability to do it all and then some, and still have a smile on her face at the end of the day, has always been an inspiration to me. She has taught me that no matter what you are going through, you should never take your frustrations out on others. One of the things that I remember the most from my childhood about my mom was how she was always singing while she cooked or cleaned, or while running errands in the car. As hard as she worked and as tired as she may have been, she never let it show, because she always wanted our days to be joyful. She says that she

went back to school and worked so hard to be successful in her career in order to be a good role model for us. When I was born, I was two months premature and in 1981 it was a bigger deal than it is today. Mom says that she was so afraid that I might not make it and that I was so tiny. I was in the hospital for a couple of months and when I went home I was still so small that I could only wear baby doll clothes. She says that becoming a new mother changed her life completely, because it brought her such a sense of pride—and also the relief of letting go of all of the trivial things in life because nothing else mattered anymore except being a good mother. My brother is a specialist in the army and an Afghanistan veteran. His deployment was the hardest year of our lives. My mom remembers holding him and looking down at him after he was born and feeling thankful that the world was a safe place, and hoped that he would never be in danger. When he joined the army at the age of 19, she was so scared for him but at the same time so proud of the brave decision he had made to do something positive with his life that would help our country. She says that her favorite part of raising us was discovering each of our unique personalities while at the same time seeing herself in us. She also loved to watch us do things on our own that she had taught us to do, and to know then that she was doing a good job. She believes that motherhood is having the responsibility of making sure your child grows up to be a good person, and becoming a better person yourself in the process. She says that it is the greatest gift that God gives and it is up to us to appreciate every

minute of it. The word constant is what I would use to describe her love and care. A quotation by Tenneva Jordan perfectly describes my mom’s selflessness: “A mother is a person who, when seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.” My mom has done this so many times. My mom treasures family dinners together. She and I cook together in the kitchen, and then we all go for a walk outside afterward. I’ve learned from my mom to never take your loved ones for granted, to always have a positive attitude, and that life is what you make of it. Even though I am an adult, her mothering ways have not stopped even for a minute. She always makes sure that I am okay and wants to offer advice for every problem. The best part of having her for a mom now is the friendship that has developed between us. We love to talk about everything under the sun. We have a way of communicating that reflects our deep connection. She can make a joke and I will be the only one in the room who laughs. It’s not that her jokes are not funny. It’s just that I am the only one who truly gets them. My mom is a hardworking, resilient, intelligent woman who, without even saying anything, inspires me to always do the right thing through her example. I feel so blessed to have been given a wonderful mother to be led by and to be friends with at the same time. She is a great source of joy in my family, and my brother and I are so grateful for the life that she gave us, the life that she worked so hard to establish for us, and the life that we now share with her as adults. There’s an old saying that goes, “You can’t choose your family but you can choose your friends.” I choose her as my best friend, and if I could choose anyone to be my mother, I would choose her again.


“The moment a child is born the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed but the mother never. The mother is something absolutely new.” — Rajneesh

Are You Raising Your Grandchild? M

any of us are doing this as a result of circumstances we wish had never happened, but here we are, making the best of it. Some grandparents are often prone to hide this arrangement, with the thought that they would rather not “air their laundry in public.” Many are also likely to go it alone, feeling that they would be embarrassed to share their experience with others in similar circumstances. In both cases they are making a big mistake, for both themselves and their grandkids. One of the most important things we can do for our grandkids is to let them see that they are not alone in this situation, so that they don’t feel as if they are “different” because you are raising them, and not their parents. Sure, you’re not

as likely to be “in tune” with their generation as their parents would be, but you provide other benefits and perspectives that they wouldn’t otherwise receive. By exposing them to others in the same situation, you will help them understand that they are really not some kind of an oddity. You will benefit, as we did, by joining a group of grandparents and relatives who are raising these children. First, you will learn what others in this situation are doing and what they have done in the past. This could help in pointing out what you’ve been doing right, and also where you could improve. Second, it is a great resource for help with legal issues, from professionals and from the experiences of others.

by Michael Carbonara

Lastly, a camaraderie forms with the others in your group, who can offer their support for those going through a rough patch. Please don’t let your pride interfere with what is beneficial for your grandkids. Seek out and meet with a Kinship Care group in your area. There is no cost, and refreshments are served. For more information, contact The Legacy Link, Inc. at 770-538-2650 or at 1800-845-LINK. Visit a support group in a county near you. Share and help others who are “Parenting the Second Time Around.”

Dawson / Lumpkin 2nd Wednesday each month 10:00am – 11:30am

May 2010 •

Lumpkin County Senior Center Forsyth 3rd Tuesday each month 6:30pm (light dinner provided) Forsyth County Senior Center Banks / Habersham / White 4th Monday each month 10:00am – 11:30am Habersham County Senior Center Hall 4th Wednesday each month 10:00am – 11:30am The Legacy Shoppe at Lakeshore Mall Towns / Union 2nd Sunday each month 1:30pm – 3:30pm Mountain Presbyterian Church, Blairsville

400 Edition 19

To My Mom, Judith

by Tammi Johnson Scales

Thanks for always having my back, no questions asked! I love you!


he definition of a mother in Webster’s dictionary states that it dates back before the 12th century. 1. A female parent, a woman in authority 2. Maternal tenderness or affection 3. Something that is an extreme or ultimate example of its kind, especially in terms of scale. What one word would sum up the true meaning of a mother? A mother births, adopts, and surrogates. A birth mother – Her greatest accomplishment is to give the gift of life. Ask any mother what her greatest moment is, and she will answer, “the birth of my children.” An adoptive mother – She provides the unconditional love, and cares for that child as if she gave birth to him herself. A surrogate mother – She will give the selfless gift that provides a loving family with a child that they desperately want. Only a mother knows how important the fulfillment is. A foster mother – Provides stability for children who temporarily lose their own mothers. A mother...takes in stray children, unwanted children, and the troubled and abused ones. She loves and accepts them unconditionally and expects nothing in return. We are all mothers in one way or the other. We nurture our nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbors, and friends’ children. We all have the responsibility to protect the future generation. So what best describes a mother? She is organized; she is the one who has a baby in one arm and a diaper bag, purse, and another child in the other hand and can still grocery shop. She is the one who has baby spit-up on her shirt and tousled-looking hair, yet still manages to look beautiful. She is the one who is feeding her baby while her own food is getting cold. She is the one who is chasing a toddler down the aisle and still can carry her packages. She is the one sitting in the front row of your play, the one clapping the loudest at your graduation, the one who is drying your tears no matter what you have done wrong. She is the one who is always proud of you, even when you’re not proud of yourself. She is the one who made sacrifices for us when we didn’t even realize it. Where is a safer place than in your mother’s arms? I know all this because I am describing my own mother, Judith Johnson, the most generous person that I know. She was always there for me, she never turned her back on me, even when I was wrong. She is always in my corner, even when my plans are much different than hers. She always accepts me even when my decisions are not the ones she would have made. She is always proud of me, always accepts me, and her love is truly unconditional. She truly is the best person that I know. If I am half the mother to my children that my mother is to me, then I have done my job well. I am a better person today because of her. Take a moment today and call the woman you think of as a “MOM” and thank her by saying Happy Mother’s Day… I am dialing my mom’s number now.

20 400 Edition

You Ain’t Got Nothin’ Till You Put A Girl In It

by Monica Kingery


ou may say it’s a girl thing…or that girls just want to have fun…but you ain’t got nothing till…you put a girl in it. Then you have memories that last a lifetime. A wise person once said, “If we couldn’t all laugh together around this table, I wouldn’t be able to stand this family.” Love and laughter hold us together. Actually I think that person was my mom. After giving birth to ten children, you have a choice to laugh or cry. My mom chose to laugh. Even when life was painful, with all the disappointments and heartache that automatically come attached to life sometimes, after the tears came laughter. And sometimes they joined hands and came

together. Mom left us behind to go to her real home in April 2004, but she left her laughing gene for her family. Like most normal families, we’ve had our issues, fights, skeletons in the closet— but most importantly, forgiveness for each other’s shortcomings and mistakes. After all the kissin’, huggin’, and makin’ up, there was

laughter. In the Tardonia family we have an annual all-girls family weekend. This year all the girls in the family (18) had the ultimate girls’ slumber party at Theresa’s house in Indian Harbor Beach, Florida. The weekend was filled with Tardonia Trivia, Twister, group walk to the beach, and of course my sister and I double-dog-dared each other to dive in the ocean with our clothes on—so we had to do it. We laughed ourselves sick, and cried some during the moments when we could feel Mom’s presence and missed her so much. Our ultimate blessing of the weekend was all going to church and together worshiping our Heavenly Father who has blessed us with a family that can laugh and love. Some people take family for granted. Do they really think they will always be there? They won’t. How long has it been since you’ve picked up the phone and called your sister, brother, mom, dad, son, or daughter? Better yet, bring out the old picture box, sit around the kitchen table, and laugh.

Ready For That Final Touch


s you make your plans to beautify the part of this Earth that you call home, I want to let you know you have a friend at Sandra’s Landscape Materials on Dawsonville Highway. For that final touch in your yard design, Sandra and her crew are eager to help. With five different mulches, dirt, sand, rock, gravel, and straws, Sandra’s is ready to load up your trunk, trailer, or truck, or deliver to you. Need yard

May 2010 •

art? Sandra’s has it, whether it’s concrete fountains, statuary, or some of the metal objects you might want to use to make your yard design a little bit unusual. Located just east of GA 400 at 5114 Dawsonville Highway (Highway 53), Sandra’s is buzzing with activity; so call 678-965-6788 or take the short drive out Highway 53 and do a walkthrough of the rocks, statuary, and pottery. Let Sandra’s make you look good this year, starting now. See the Sandra’s Landscape Materials ad in this issue and tell her you saw them in 400 Edition.

A Mother I Would Choose T

hey say you can’t pick your relatives, but I suspect that if I were shopping for mothers in Macy’s, I would still pick the one God gave me. My oldest sister Rhonda (also my wisest sister) and I were just commenting on the fact that we have been amazingly blessed in our lives—with four girls total, all of us have lived generally unscathed lives and possess a confidence and sense of self that only a truly good mother can instill in a young lady. Yes, all in all, I would say I have had the perfect mom. Need proof? My mother is Linda Merritt, the editor of 400 Edition, and so much more. Many readers, most of our advertisers, and many other people in the world have discovered how easy it is to love my mother. It is impossible NOT to love Mama because she spends so much time loving everyone around her. She learned long ago from her own loving parents that love is the most important thing, and it has been the driving characteristic in her life. She will laugh when she reads this, even though she’ll have teary eyes, because what she remembers are occasions when she has also proven herself a strong-willed woman—and tough enough to not always feel like she’s loving at the time. But time has always proven that her actions, no matter how tough they may seem, are ultimately driven by love. My mother became a woman in an era when her primary expectation was

to be a wife and mother—to raise a happy household. Instead, she joined the workforce in her early thirties, filling administrative roles as did many women in the late ’60s and early ’70s. Along the way, a wise man at PepsiCo realized Mama’s intelligence, work ethic, and incredible gift for dealing with others, and promoted her to a management position. Once in that role, her career soared. At PepsiCo and Siemens, Mama achieved enterpriselevel, top management positions without benefit of a college degree—based solely upon the merit of her abilities and the favor of God. She lived a great example at a time when many did a lot of talking about the empowerment of women. With four daughters, she lived this example, but still remained a lady and a godly woman, never exhibiting the “hear me roar” mentality. All of my life, I’ve had to share my mother with my friends. Her warmth was infectious and my friends always wanted her to adopt them. One of my male college friends was truly my best friend at the time, but Mama always insisted that he wanted to be more than my friend. When I told him her theory, he replied, “Why

May 2010 •

by Beth Snider

Proverbs 31:25-28 — She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her. would I want the carbon copy instead of the original?”—meaning my mother, of course. Although some girls might have taken offense at that, I was pretty happy at the thought of being my mom’s “mini-me.” From Mama, I have learned some excellent lessons:

• Obedience to God is a requirement, and living in faith is a wonderful gift.

• Happiness is a choice you make every day. • A mother’s love knows no limit. • Friends should be there at all times—for fun and for tears.

• Success is achieved by promoting success in others, so become a personal fan of those around you.

• Life is too short to sweat the small stuff. So, many thanks to Mama, for being the originator of any good you may see in me, and an example I would choose for my life.

400 Edition 21

Fun 400 by

Mother Match-Up

Match the statement on the left with the correct “mother” on the right.

Courtesy of Answers on page 29.

1. _____ Another name for our planet.

a. Motherland

2. _____ A woman who helped the sick and the poor.

b. Motherwort

3. _____ Author of many nursery rhymes.

c. Whistler’s Mother

4. _____ The second Sunday in May.

d. Mother Superior

5. _____ She went to the cupboard and found it bare.

e. Den Mother

6. _____ The main vein of ore in a mine.

f. Mother of too many children

7. _____ Necessity is the _____________.

g. Mother Teresa

8. _____ The hard inner layer of some shellfish.

h. Mother may I?

9. _____ The name of a favorite childhood game.

i. Mother-of-pearl

10. _____ What the three little kittens called their mother.

j. Mother Dear

11. _____ An environmental mother.

k. Mother tongue

12. _____ One of the world’s most famous paintings.

l. Mother Goose

13. _____ Part of a computer.

m. Old Mother Hubbard

14. _____ The woman head of a convent.

n. Mother Earth

15. _____ One’s native language.

o. Mother-in-law

16. _____ An herb of the mint family.

p. Mother of invention

17. _____ The mother of one’s husband or wife.

q. Mother’s Day

18. _____ The country of one’s birth or ancestors.

r. Mother Nature

19. _____ A scout mom.

s. Mother lode

20. _____ The problem of the old woman who lived in the shoe.

t. Motherboard

Memorial Day Unscramble Unscramble the letters to reveal the words commonly associated with Memorial Day. 1. eilmamro _____________________

5. soseidrl _____________________

2. niolatan _____________________

6. ueaeqbrb _____________________

10. sadnb _____________________

3. ahdoyli _____________________

7. ecmeryno _____________________

11. eeecsshp _____________________

4. ebrmerme _____________________

8. sgfla _____________________

12. uctkooo _____________________

My Mother, Nancy King A

s a new mom, you start to look at everything as life lessons. How can you form this warm cuddly child into a well-adjusted and loving adult? I have to admit it is a very daunting task. But as the saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child.” My sons are so lucky to have their grandparents close by as part of their “village.” As I look at them playing together, I started to think about all of the things that my mom taught to me that I want to make sure I pass down to them. So here goes: • Teach your kids that they are not the center of The Universe but they are everything in the world to you. Give them the strength to do things on their own. Failing at a task is a learning experience that every child should go through. It teaches them how to pick themselves up, brush themselves off, and try it again. She was my gymnastics coach, my swim teacher, my brother and sister’s substitute teacher (however,

22 400 Edition

9. aeprsda _____________________

by Melissa Herrel I think the motive was to make sure they stayed out of trouble). No matter what we did, she was there to lend support and encouragement.

• Never forget where you are from and who you are. It is what defines you. No matter how long she lives in the Deep South, she is still a proud NorwegianMidwesterner from Fargo, North Dakota. If you are lucky, you can get an “Uffda,” a “Dontcha know,” or an “Oh…what a hoot” out of her. • Real friendships are not fleeting but lifelong. Nourish them and they will nourish you. She has moved well over ten times, to places that include Chicago, Singapore, and Dawsonville, Georgia. But no matter how far she goes, her potluck friends from Fargo stay in touch and they still often get together. • People usually like to tell their story, whatever that may be. It just takes a kind person to ask the right

May 2010 •

questions to get it out. It always amazes me how she does that. • If you live in a community, then be a part of that community. Take part in it. Whether it is learning about all of the different cultures and history that made Singapore unique or organizing the Spring Fling in Dawsonville, she has always adapted to her surroundings with grace, love, and infectious humor. • It is a very small world. I can’t tell you how many times family members have rolled their eyes because she has said, “I know that person” in some obscure foreign location. It is very rare when she doesn’t actually know them—and usually it is somebody from Fargo. • Live, love, and keep what is important close to your heart but give hugs freely and often. I was lucky enough to grow up in a household where love never came at a price and I always knew that I had a warm and solid place in her heart and in her hugs. • Oh…and one last lesson: Don’t stand between a grandma and her grandkids. You are likely to get run over. We love you, Mom! Happy Mother’s Day!


Tip: Keep in mind that 400 Edition is now released on or about the 1st of each month. Your event needs to be submitted via our web site 30-45 days prior to your event date and no later than the 20th of the month. We have to have all the information requested on the submission form, so be sure your form is complete. Just go to and click “Submit an Event” on the home page.

May 1- May Day May 5 - Cinco De Mayo May 8 - V-E Day May 9 - Mother’s Day May 15 - Armed Forces Day May 31 - Memorial day (observed)

Alpharetta Scottsdale Farms

May 8 and 9, 11:00am to 2:00pm. Horse and carriage rides, free smoothie for Mom at Bella Luna Cafè, children make a gift for Mom at Scottsdale Farms, no charge. For more information: Monica at 770-777-5875 or

Race to the Finish!

May 15, Mayor’s Challenge 5K/10K road race, beginning at 7:15am at the Wills Park Swimming Pool. This is a 5K/10K Peachtree Qualifier for the serious runner. A Fun Run/Walk for the whole family will start at 8:30am. Beginning at 7:30am, a pancake breakfast for all runners will be served. Proceeds from the Mayor’s Challenge support the Alpharetta Rotary. Registration fee is $20 for adults, $15 for kids 12 and under in advance; $25 for adults and $20 for kids 12 and under on race day. Complete registration on or call 678-795-0115.

Low Maintenance Gardening May 22, 10:00am to 11:00am at Scottsdale Farms. Kate Copsey, Master Gardener and writer; no charge. For more information: Monica at 770-777-5875 or

Customer Appreciation Day May 29, 11:00am to 1:00pm at Scottsdale Farms. Owners Luca and Kathy will be cooking on the grill (while supplies last) for you; no charge. For more information: Monica at 770-777-5875 or

Blairsville Cruise In

May 1, 1:00pm to 5:00pm on

the Blairsville Square. For more information:

Spring Arts & Crafts Festival

May 22-23. Art exhibits, crafts, entertainment, and good food. Over 50 artists and craftsmen around the square. Everything from paintings to jewelry to pottery is available for purchase. Food vendors (hamburgers and festival type goodies). Entertainment: the Blairsville School of Dance, classical musicians, bluegrass musicians, and barbershop quartets. For more information: Janet Hartman at 706- 994-4837.

Blue Ridge Front Row Center 2010

May 15, 7:00pm at Performing Arts Center, Fannin Co. High School. Smokie Mountain Melodies Chapter of Sweet Adelines International presents an evening of barbershop harmony and fun in its annual show. For more information: Ann Cahill at 706-835-1563 or

Canton 21st Annual Cherokee County Mother’s Day Pow Wow

May 8 and 9, Boling Park. Saturday 11:00am to 8:00pm. Sunday 11:00am to 6:00pm. Dancing for Haiti, competition Pow Wow, Indian festival, all drums welcome, Iron man competition, re-enactments, tipi encampments and competition, primitive skills demonstrations, warriors on horseback, Ray Pena (Birds of Prey), hoop dancers, Aztec dancers, live buffalo, native arts and crafts, kids activities. Benefits: Cherokee Horse Rescue and My Brother’s Keeper. Admission: Adults $9, kids $5, kids 5 years and

May 2010 •

400 Edition 23

Events, Events,

under free. For more information: or 770-735-6275.

Association. For more information:

Arts and Crafts Festival

Heritage Day Celebration

May 15 and 16 from 10:00am to 5:00pm. Artists, musical entertainment, exceptional food, a youth art exhibit, and a hands-on area for children. The Artist’s Market section hosts the finest works of the most talented artists and craftspeople from across the Southeast; mediums include oil, watercolor, fine blown glass, elegant and whimsical jewelry, decorative and functional pottery, sculpture and hand turned wood, and more. Panels and book signings by 20 to 30 Southern authors covering a variety of literary topics. Also featured: the Serenity Gardens, encompassing the art of gardening, preservation, environmental protection, and healthy living. The Festival also offers entertainment, a beer garden, and hands-on art activities for children at Camp Imagine. All funds raised benefit the Cherokee County Arts Center. For more information: Mandi Ballinger, mandiballinger@gmail.comor770-479-2020.

Cumming Cumming Celebrates Quilts!

May 7-9, 1:00pm to 5:00pm at Brannon-Heard House. For more information,: Betty Alonsious at 770-889-3086 or

Newcomer and Women’s Club May Luncheon

May 20, 11:00am at Windermere Golf Club, 5000 Davis Love Drive. Speaker will be Ms. Fiona Page, past president of the “Southern Order of Storytellers,” recipient of the Tommy Nobis Award, and Ms. Senior Georgia 2004. Fiona, who is blind, will inspire with her story, and will provide tips on how to respond when around the blind. Lunch will be served, and new officers will be installed. Make your reservation by May 13; cost is $20. For more information: Edee Scott at 770-312-4619, or

A Show of Hands

May 21, 12:00pm to 8:00pm; May 22, 10:00am to 8:00pm; May 23, 12:00pm to 6:00pm, Historic Brannon-Heard House, 111 Pilgrim Mill Road. 3-Dimensional Art Exhibit & Sale featuring original handcrafted pieces and local artist demonstrations. Free admission. Presented by the Sawnee Artists

24 400 Edition

June 5, 11:00am to 4:00pm at the Fowler Farm, 3813 Atlanta Highway, just south of Cumming. The Historical Society of Forsyth County’s Annual Heritage Day and Open House will offer farm life demonstrations, including bluegrass music, blacksmithing, heirloom gardening, basket weaving, quilting, milk churning, and the like. Tour the 10acre farm, farmhouse, and outbuildings (such as a two-story chicken house, two “modern” chicken houses), get a feel for what it was like to live and work on a farm in Forsyth County in days gone by. Antique car show, music, BBQ, tours of the Fowler Fire Station and fire truck, face painting, and more. Admission is free, although donations are accepted to help preserve Forsyth County’s historical landmarks, including the Fowler Farm. For more information: 678-779-5054 or

Family Fun Run/Walk

June 5. 5th Annual Family Fun Run/ Walk through Vickery Village. The 5K Fun Run/Walk begins at 8:00am; the Youth 1M and Tot Trot begin at 9:00am. Free to the community. Healthy Kids Day activities at the YMCA follow the run at 9:00am. Events include kid-friendly vendors, interactive demos and games, jump houses, kids’ zumba. Register for the Fun Run at the Forsyth County Family YMCA,, 770-888-2788.

Dahlonega Mother/Daughter Day Duo

May 1 and 8. Join us for our first annual Mother/Daughter Day Duo. $25.00 for each Mother/Daughter Duo. Your Mother/Daughter Day Duo package includes your nails painted, a Rodan + Fields mini microdermabrasion facial, eyebrow shaping, along with a shampoo and style. We will serve a light snack with coffee and tea. Reserve your spot today: 706-482-0541. 408 West Main St., Suite 2.

Lumpkin County High School Annual Career Fair May 6, 8:30am to 1:00pm, Lumpkin County High School, 2001 Indian Drive, Dahlonega. For more information: Mark Wall, Career

Technical Intervention Coordinator, 678-654-5882, (mwall@lumpkin. or Jeff Bearinger, Career Technical and Agriculture Education Department Head, 706-344-9021,

North Georgia Shop Hop

May 6 through 9, 9:00am to 6:00pm daily. Quilting Across North Georgia’s theme this year is “North Georgia Visits the World.” Specials and lots of door prizes. The participating shops: Fabric Center and Quilt Shop in Blairsville, Country Stitches in Blue Ridge, Log Cabin Patchworks in Hiawassee, Magical Threads in Dahlonega, Quilt Shop on the Square in Ellijay, Sew Memorable in Dawsonville, and The Common Thread in Dahlonega. For more information: or 706-864-0740.

Spring Bloom BBQ

May 8, 11:00am to 3:00pm. If you love flowers, barbecue, and a nice shady spot to enjoy it all, come to the Spring Bloom BBQ at Waypoint Nursery, 600 Seven Mile Hill Road, right off Highway 60. Barbecue plates are $7.00; proceeds benefit Waypoint Men’s Regeneration Program. For more information: Waypoint office 706-864-7110 or email Brian

“Night of Classic Hollywood”

May 8, 6:00pm, North Georgia College & State University Dining Hall. Join NOA (No One Alone) on the Red Carpet for a “Night of Classic Hollywood” at the 15th Annual Spring Gala. Your ticket includes dinner, entertainment, and a silent and live auction to raise funds for the NOA domestic violence shelter and programs. Tickets are $65 each, or a table of 8 for $500; available online at or by phone. For more information or to make reservations: Nicole, or 706-864-1306, ext 6.

Georgia Mountains Master Gardeners Garden Expo

May 15-16 from 9:00am to 4:00pm at Hancock Park north of the Dahlonega Square. Master Gardeners will hold a plant and tag sale. Programs will be presented on various topics. Also, a demonstration garden of native plants, wildflower walks, and children activities will be presented.

May 2010 •

For more information, contact Juanita Tipton at 706-867-1835 or

3rd Annual Pie Baking Contest and Pie Tasting Event

May 29 from 11:00am to 2:00pm at the Dahlonega Hancock Park/Catholic Center (one block behind Brad Walker Pottery). Enter your best pie, either a savory or dessert pie; deadline for registration is May 10. Or attend the event and sample a wide selection from the best cooks in the area. A $10 ticket buys five servings of pie of your choice. Cash prizes and 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place ribbons will be awarded in both “Savory” and “Sweet” categories. Prizes also awarded for “People’s Choice” and “Best of Show.” Music by Douglas Brake & the Sizzle, Hiss, Pop Band, and the David Brothers Band. There will also be activities and fun for the whole family. All proceeds benefit the Dolly Parton Imagination Library program in Lumpkin County, to assist in the purchase of books and with mailing costs. Presented by the Lumpkin County Literacy Coalition; for more information: or Sharon Kridel 706-864-4906.

Woman’s Club BBQ Dinner

June 4, 4:30pm, Community House, North Park Street. $7:00 tickets include a pork BBQ sandwich, baked beans, cole slaw, drink, and dessert. Purchase tickets from any Dahlonega Woman’s Club member or at the door; take-outs available. For more information: Lana Hootselle 706-864-0245 or email

Dahlonega Senior (50+) Co-ed Softball

Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. Games start at 10:30am daily. Bring your glove and come play at the Lumpkin County Parks & Recreation Field #5, 266 Mechanicsville Road (adjacent to the Senior Center). For more information: 678-343-8069.

The Mountain Flower Fine Art Festival

May 15 and 16. Features juried original fine art and fine craft of regional artists, and also celebrates the local and area mountain wildflowers. A number of fine artists and crafters— painters, potters, silversmiths, photographers, weavers—will display their original handcrafted art, and various performing artists will play on

Events, Events! the square during the weekend. The MFAF is presented by the Dahlonega Merchants Association; sponsored by the Dahlonega Arts Council.

Dawsonville Customer Appreciation Day

May 7, 10:00am to 3:00pm. United Community Bank, 400 Branch and Downtown Branch. Food, fun and free tomato plants. For more information: 706-265-3232.

Murder Mystery Dinner

May 8. Peach Brandy Cottage. Doors open at 6:00pm, dinner served at 6:30pm. Join the friends of the Dawson County Humane Society for “The Curse of the Hopeless Diamond.” Cash bar available. Donation $50 per ticket; proceeds benefit the Dawson County Humane Society (your evening of fun may be fully deductible). Seating is very limited and will sell out fast. Make checks payable to “Dawson County Humane Society” and mail or bring them to Peach Brandy Cottage, 3 Shepherd’s Lane.

Dawson Lumpkin Homebuilders Association The Dawson Lumpkin Homebuilders Association is currently looking for new members, and they don’t necessarily have to be builders and or even in the construction industry. Individuals in the fields of real estate, insurance, banking, home improvement, small business, etc., are welcome to join. The DLHBA meets the 3rd Wednesday of each month at Ryan’s in Dawsonville (Hwy 400 and 53). A full breakfast buffet is served at 7:30am; the meeting follows, from 8 to 9am. DLHBA members’ meals are complimentary; guests $5.00. There are some great speakers upcoming: Frank Norton, Jr., Senator Chip Pearson, Council for Quality Growth, Rep. Amos Amerson. For more information: 866-522-4055.

Memorial Day Service

May 31, 3:00pm. Veterans Memorial Park. To honor the memory of those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom. There will be a dedication for the Veterans Walk of Honor at 2:30pm.

Essence Women’s Conference - World Race

June 4 from 7:00pm to 9:30pm at The Father’s House - Christ Fellowship Church. Have missions in your heart but don’t know where to start? Is it

easier to start a local jail ministry than a global mission? What do you have to do to get prepared? Learn from some awesome women of God who have committed their lives to the Great Commission. Appetizers and child care will be provided. Please register at For more information, contact Beth Snider at 706-216-3248 or

the unique needs and developmental stages of kids and teens who have experienced the death of a loved one. Camp is composed of two sessions based on ages of participants. Elementary school: June 14-18, 8:30am-3:30pm, Walters Barn in Lula. Middle and high school: July 12-16, 8:30am-3:30pm, Walters Barn in

Lula. At Camp Braveheart, kids learn they are not alone in their grief, and they have a safe place to share and explore their loss with the support of counselors, volunteers, and other campers. Camp Braveheart is designed to create a meaningful growth experience through fun and creative therapies, recreational activities, and

Putting the Pieces Together

June 5, 2:00pm until 4:00pm at the Bowen Center for the Arts. A “Meet the Artists” reception hosted by the Heart in Hand Quilt Guild. Refreshments will be served. You may submit your ballot for the 2010 Viewer’s Choice. The Heart in Hand Quilt Guild meets on the second Tuesday of each month at the Bowen Center at 6:30pm. For more information: Janice Chesnik, President 706-482-2238.

Gainesville Women In Business Communication Conference

May 6, 6:00pm to 9:00pm at Featherbone Communiversity. 2nd annual Woman In Business Conference, an evening of inspiration, education, and business-to-business networking featuring over 30 local businesses. Keynote speaker, radio personality, and author Coach Kimberly Jackson and Social Media Marketer Pamela Adams will educate us on the finer points of effectively reaching your audience. Register online at ($35 for attendees, $50 for vendors) or call 770-531-5681. Seating is very limited, with a limited number of vendor tables. For more information: DeDe Gosage, 770-531-5681 or

Alzheimer’s Support Group

June 8, 1:00pm to 3:30pm at The Guest House Adult Day Care Facility. Monthly support group for the caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s. Meets the second Tuesday of each month. Come listen to speakers, receive support, and know that you are not alone. For more information: Jocelyn, 770-535-1487 or

Camp Braveheart

Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) is accepting signups for Camp Braveheart, an annual five-day camp designed to address

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400 Edition 25


supportive adult role models. Campers leave with a better understanding of grief and its impact, and various positive coping skills. Camp Braveheart is provided at no cost, but space is limited and registration is required. For more information or to register: Jen Sorrells, 770-219-8528, or

Hiawassee Arts & Heritage Festival

May 8, 11:00am to 4:00pm on the square in Hiawassee. Music, food, arts, and history. Sponsored by Towns County Historical Society.

Fire in the Mountains Chili Cook-off

May 29, 10:30am to 3:00pm on the square in Hiawassee. Sponsored by Towns County Fire Corps, to benefit T.C. Fire Department. For more information and registration form:

Jasper Tater Patch Players

June 3, 4, and 5 at 7:30pm; June 6 at 2:00pm. Tater Patch Players will present Proof. Tickets are $12 adult and $10 student at the door; $2.00 discount advance tickets available at Jasper Drugs and at Community Bank of Pickens County. At the door only, you can “Pay what you can” on June 3. All shows will be staged at the Pickens County Chamber of Commerce Community Room. Show contains adult language and content.

May 16, June 20, July 18, August 15. Join us on the third Sunday of each month from May to August for an old-fashioned ice cream social. At the end of your tour, you will be treated to a free ice cream sundae as our celebration of cool treats in the hot summer months. Barrington Hall, 770-640-3855.

Barbecue at Tillie’s Roadhouse with Mayor Jere Wood

May 23 from 5:00pm-8:00pm. Meet us at Tillie’s Roadhouse for a Southernstyle barbecue. Mayor Wood will star in a signature bow tie fashion show and the band The Bow Ties will entertain with their bluegrass sounds. Limit 48 guests; members $45, nonmembers $50. All proceeds benefit the Roswell Historical Society. For more information:770-992-1665 or visit

Sautee-Nacoochee Caroline Aiken and DeDe Vogt in Concert

May 22, 8:00pm to 10:30pm at Center theatre. Singer/songwriter duo in intimate 100-seat theatre. Gold-record and Grammy-nominated performers. For more information: Terri Edgar, 706-878-3300 or

Annual Pig-Out, Memorial Day Weekend

May 1-29 from 7:30am to 12:00pm at the Park and Ride lot near Lee Newton Park. Purchase wholesome, homegrown produce and handmade arts and crafts. Sponsored by the Pickens County Master Gardeners. For more information: Kathy Bell, 706-253-8840 or

May 29. The Sautee Nacoochee Volunteer Firefighters will be cooking up some of the best pit-cooked barbecue in the state at the Sautee Nacoochee Community Center on Hwy 255 North near the Highway 17 intersection. Serving begins at noon and continues until 5:00pm. Pork, chicken, firehouse beans, slaw, Brunswick stew, and Texas toast. Adults $10, children under 12 $5. For more information: Capt. Roger Williams, 706-878-9349 or


Stone Mountain

Mothers Feeding Others

Stone Mountain Barbershop Chorus

Jasper Farmers Market

May 9, 1:00pm to 3:00pm. Bring mom out on her special day. Treat her to a tour of Barrington Hall, Bulloch Hall, and Smith Plantation during our annual open house. Admission is free but food donations will be accepted at each house for the North Fulton Food Bank. Barrington Hall, 770-640-3855.

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Third Sundaes at Barrington

May 2010 •

June 5, 3:00pm in the sanctuary of Mountain Park United Methodist Church, 1405 Rockbridge Road. Doors will open at 2:00 pm. The Chorus will present its 2010 Spring Concert for one performance only. The show will feature performances by several of the chapter quartets, as well as


inspirational and patriotic selections performed by the entire 60-man chorus. Tickets may be ordered from or by calling 770-978-8053.

Young Harris 3rd Annual Horsin’ Around BBQ Showdown

May 29 and 30, 11:00am to 5:00pm at the Stables at Brasstown Valley Resort & Spa. This is a KCBS-sanctioned event; contestants come from across the state of Georgia and beyond to compete. Also at the Showdown: The Blairsville Cruisers will hold a car show; the All American Arts & Crafts Festival will host over 30 crafters

and live demonstrations. There will be a Kids Fun Zone, pony rides, live entertainment, great food, a Show Up and Cook contest, and a chili cookoff. At the People’s Choice event you can try over 30 different BBQ’s cooked by our teams. A portion of the proceeds from the event benefits SAFE and The Family Connection Organization. For more information or to receive e-mail information: Karen Rogers, 706-379-4606 or

That’s Entertainment

by Bob Merritt


had promised the folks at Lanier Diner that I would return on Friday night, have a good meal, and be entertained during their weekly karaoke session. Linda and I showed up and had a blast. It was fun and it was entertaining, to say the least. We sat through a number of sessions where both wannabes and pros put on a show. A few of the participants bordered on being pros. Linda and the girls have the voices in our family, with some grandsons added to the mix. There is no danger of me even trying to sing, since God made me a listener and enjoyer of anyone who tries. We met a lot of friendly people and we enjoyed ourselves. Lynda Waters is the disc jockey who emcees this event every Friday night and works at Alpha Cosmetic Dentistry in Suwanee the rest of the time. Her singing experience and passion for this production is deeply appreciated by performers and the listening audience alike. I was intrigued by a husband-and-wife team that performed separately this night. Royce Farmer impressed the whole audience with his rendition of “Man Of Constant Sorrow,” while his wife, Helen Farmer, impressed us all with her “Rocky Top.” She quieted the place with a couple of hand-clapping specials. Linda Jones did well with a

Buck Owens song, and Jerry Corwin made Willie Nelson proud. We were entertained by Mack McAdams all evening as he sang a good medley from Ray Price. A newcomer, Coley Capell, brought the house down with his song choice, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.” Coley is around five years old and not a bit shy. His mother, Crystal, participated with “Walk Away Joe.” Bill Morrison served up a few good songs; my favorite was “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” I understand this wasn’t all of the usual bunch of singers. If you have ever wanted to try your voice, you are invited to select your song disc and sing out for a audience that came to be entertained. We were just that, and we will be back. The atmosphere reminds me of the 1950s and some of the soda fountains we hung out in. The food is tasty and everything on the menu is served anytime you want it. They have separate rooms for any event you might have coming up. Thanks for the entertainment—it was just that. Karaoke starts at 8:00pm every Friday night. Lanier Diner is located at 1310 Dawsonville Highway in Gainesville. See their ad in this issue.

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400 Edition 27

Health Matters: Speaking from the Heart L

ast month in our introductory article of Health Matters we established three key principles to be used to improve our knowledge and awareness of various health concerns. Those principles are metaphorically defined by three major limbs on the Tree of Hippocrates: Knowledge, Teaching, and Service. Our goal is to develop a better understanding of wellness that will assist us in achieving a healthier and rewarding life-style. This month we will continue our series of discussions related to

coronary heart disease (CHD). The main focus of our initial article was to establish the fact that CHD is different in women than in men; that the recognition, diagnosis, and treatment outcomes of CHD are oftentimes variable and different in women…“women are special.” I feel it to be important for us to explore some of the risk factors for developing CHD. Risk factors are health conditions or habits that increase one’s chances of developing a disease or having it worsen. The risk of CHD resulting from a family history of disease or one’s age clearly cannot be changed. However, the factors one can change or control are extensive and evolving. I would imagine the majority of the readers could quickly define a number of the traditionally established major risk factors for CHD: Hypertension Elevated cholesterol (abnormal LDL, HDL, triglycerides) Diabetes Smoking Obesity

We will not attempt to play the numbers game in each category as to specific undesirable values. I do wish to address a few aspects regarding some of the traditional factors and explore some of the developing “new” risk factors that you may find of interest.

Diabetes Mellitus

Currently of epidemic proportion in the United States, type II diabetes has had an enormous impact on the prevalence and clinical outcomes of CHD. The relative risk of having a heart attack is increased threefold, and the risk of death twofold, in individuals with diabetes regardless of other existing risk factors. In those with diabetes, CHD is often more advanced at the time of diagnosis, and associated with a more unfavorable prognosis in women than in men; and having diabetes

28 400 Edition

by John P. Vansant, MD, FACC

is the equivalent of having known disease. The positive side of this story is that better control of the blood glucose leads to a decreased risk of developing CHD, decreases the chances for subsequent heart attacks, and leads to an overall better clinical outcome.

Cigarette Smoking

This is an important reversible risk factor for CHD. The incidence of a heart attack is increased sixfold in women and threefold in men who smoke at least 20 cigarettes a day, compared to individuals who never smoked. On the positive side, the risk of a recurrent heart attack in smokers who had a prior event fell by 50% within one year of smoking cessation, and decreased to that of non-smokers within two years. The benefits of smoking cessation are seen regardless of how long or how much one has smoked.

Menopause (Estrogen Deficiency)

It has long been recognized that the incidence of CHD increased in women after menopause. Until recently, the increased incidence was thought to be related to low estrogen levels and that hormone replacement treatment may have a cardio-protective effect. However, this concept was not supported by a recent and comprehensive study from the Women’s Health Initiative. The current medical position is that estrogen-progestin replacement has no cardio-protective effect and may actually be harmful.

C-Reactive Protein (CRP)

Strong evidence began to accumulate in the early 1990s that the presence of inflammation plays an important role in the development of CHD. Based upon this evidence, protein

May 2010 •

markers of inflammation found in the blood have been studied. The most extensively studied biomarker of inflammation for the presence and progression of CHD is called C-reactive protein. The risk of development and progression of CHD is greatly increased in those with elevated CRP levels. A very interesting development occurred when it was recognized that statin drug treatment for high cholesterol significantly lowered CRP levels. This suggests that the risk reduction of statin treatment may be attributed, at least in part, to an anti-inflammatory effect. This is supported by the fact the approximately 50% of individuals who have an acute coronary event (heart attack) have normal cholesterol levels. The American Heart Association now recommends obtaining CRP levels (determined by a simple blood test) in individuals who have other major risk factors for CHD. The areas I have chosen to discuss are far from inclusive regarding the development of CHD. I strongly suggest you discuss your risk assessment with your primary physician in order to better reduce or eliminate those conditions that may cost you your good health, if not your life. Next month will be our final presentation on this three-part series regarding coronary heart disease. We will look at an overview of what role(s) the various imaging studies play in the diagnosis and the prognosis of CHD. John P. Vansant, MD, FACC is Board Certified in Nuclear Medicine, Internal Medicine, and Rheumatology and is nationally recognized for his academic and clinical accomplishments in Nuclear Cardiology.

Sign Up Now For Summer Sports Camps


ummer is quickly approaching, and now is the time to sign up for summer camps. The Forsyth County Parks and Recreation Department will offer several sports camps this summer for children.

Sandlot Day Camp

The Parks and Recreation Department will host two sessions of Sandlot Day Camp at Central Park. Each day, campers will play different sports. Campers will be divided into different teams and participate in contests. Central Park is located at 2300 Keith Bridge Road (Highway 306) in Cumming. Activity 311102A: Monday-Friday, June 28-July 2,

9:00am to noon; ages 5 to 8. $110 for county residents, $132 for noncounty residents. Activity 311102-B: Monday-Friday, July 19-23; 9:00am to 3:00pm; ages 9 to 12. $130 for county residents, $156 for noncounty residents. Campers ages 9 to 12 need to bring a sack lunch. In addition to Sandlot Day Camp, summer sports camps will be held at all five Forsyth County high schools. Sports camps will include baseball, fast-pitch softball, basketball, football, cheerleading, lacrosse, soccer, volleyball, wrestling, and speed and agility. To view complete listings and details for sports camps, visit www. and click the link for the Parks and Recreation Spring & Summer Activity Guide in the Special Features section. Copies of the activity guide can also be picked up at the County Administration Building. Pre-registration is required for all camps. An activity registration form can be found on the Parks and Recreation Department page at www. Online registration is also available. To receive additional

information about summer sports camps, contact James Parks (770-781-2215).

Northeast Georgia Arts Tour June 11, 12, and 13


ith a menu that includes more than 100 artists in over 35 locations from the top of Highway 400 to Tallulah Falls, the Northeast Georgia Art Tour’s sixth Open House summer swing through the galleries, shops, studios, guilds, and performing arts venues of four mountain counties is a moveable feast. Artists and craftspeople in White, Habersham, Rabun, and—new this year—Dahlonega-Lumpkin counties will welcome visitors into their workspaces. There’ll be demonstrations, workshops, interactive events, juried art festivals, scenic Sunday brunches, and more, in this self-guided driving and walking tour showcasing the finest paintings, pottery, jewelry, fiber art, wood work, glass, mixed media, metal, photography, and handcrafted furniture available. You choose your starting point—Dahlonega to Dillard, Cleveland to Clayton—with hundreds of miles of creativity, artistic

presentation will reveal itself at every turn. Start your delectable road trip by visiting, where you’ll find downloadable maps with which to plot your course, listing artists and their locations, hours of operation, and more. Include stops at our delightful participating dining and lodging partners, also listed, along the way. This warm-weather weekend will bring out the “best in show” and where to go across Northeast Georgia. Just look for the bright yellow Art Zone signs. The Northeast Georgia Arts Tour Open House Weekend, June 1113, is sponsored by Rabun County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Dahlonega-Lumpkin County Chamber of Commerce, and in part by the White County Chamber of Commerce and Piedmont and North Georgia Technical Colleges. Art by hand, art by heart, art by the mile—this is shopping with a view.

Answers from page 22.

Courtesy of

Mother Match-Up answers 1. n. Mother Earth, 2. g. Mother Teresa, 3. l. Mother Goose, 4. q. Mother’s Day, 5. m. Old Mother Hubbard, 6. s. Mother lode, 7. p. Mother of invention, 8. i. Mother-of-pearl, 9. h. Mother may I?, 10. j. Mother Dear, 11. r. Mother Nature, 12. c. Whistler’s Mother, 13. t. Motherboard, 14. d. Mother Superior, 15. k. Mother tongue, 16. b. Motherwort, 17. o. Mother-in-law, 18. a. Motherland, 19. e. Den Mother, 20. f. Mother of too many children

Memorial Day Unscramble answers 1. Memorial, 2. National, 3. Holiday, 4. Remember, 5. Soldiers, 6. Barbeque, 7. Ceremony, 8. Flags, 9. Parades, 10. Bands, 11. Speeches, 12. Cookout

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400 Edition 29

400 Edition Wining & Dining

by Tim Herrel

Restaurant Reviews for the GA 400 Corridor Rick Tanner’s Grille & Bar

5810 Bond Street E2 in Vickery Village Cumming, GA 30040 770-205-5512 | 770-887-6176 fax | Fare: American | Price: Moderate | Atmosphere: Casual


hey’re known in four counties for their famous chicken fingers, but it’s the Cheesy Chicken Lips that will keep me coming back—and the Beef Tenderloin on top of Garlic Mashed Potatoes. From a full breakfast menu to Sunday brunches to Youth Sports Night, Tanner’s offers something for everyone. They’re located in Vickery Village right across from the Polo Fields. Rick Tanner’s first location, in Buford Village at the intersection of Buford Highway and Hamilton Mill, has been there for several years. It was a leap of faith for them to expand into the west Forsyth area for their next location, but it has paid off well. Now involved with Forsyth West High School, and featured sponsors of ASA Soccer and Midway Baseball, they are starting to leave an indelible mark on the community. Nick, the owner’s son and

a graduate of Colorado State University, offered me a glimpse into how Tanner’s is expanding its casual fare into a more evolving palate of delectable fresh products. One item gaining in popularity is the Fish Taco, featuring some of the freshest whitefish and vegetables on a pita. My father-in-law swears they’re the best he’s had! You won’t stop at just one. Also gaining in popularity are the aforementioned Cheesy Chicken Lips, a fried egg roll stuffed with fresh rotisserie chicken, Wisconsin cheeses, and cream cheese, and served with queso cheese sauce featuring the Tanner spices. Take these home by the bucket or order them for your next group outing. You’ll be the hit of the party. Also new is the ever-changing beer selection at Tanner’s. Assessing the area’s openness to experimental beers, Nick has found that different

kinds of IPA, seasonal, and local beers are growing in taste and popularity in this market. Offering 12 beers on draft, $8 Yuengling pitchers, and various New Belgium Brewing Company beers, has let Tanner’s meet the growing needs and tastes of their customers. Also new is their full breakfast menu. With fresh whipped omelets, French toast, and breakfast sandwiches, along with a Sunday brunch from 11am to 3pm featuring steak and eggs, prime rib, and pan-seared trout, you could make this the place to eat around the clock. But let’s not forget what made them famous. It is the relaxed atmosphere, great entertainment with widescreen TVs, an outdoor patio, occasional live music on the weekends, and the awesome menu

Knowing Wine

items. Depending on the event or occasion, families and singles can pick a night that’s good for them. Monday: Kids eat free; Tuesday: Youth Sports Night; Wednesday: Team Trivia starting at 8:00pm; Friday-Saturday: Occasional live music featuring local artists; and Sunday: Brunch from 11:00am – 3:00pm With dine-in, to-go, and catering services, Rick Tanner’s offers something for everyone. Breakfast begins at 7:00am Monday-Friday; 8:00am Saturday and Sunday. So whether it’s for Mother’s Day Brunch, a quick breakfast sandwich, or time with some friends, visit Rick Tanner’s Grille & Bar and tell them that you read about it in 400 Edition.

by Nancy Forrest

Picks for 2009

Tenuta delle Terre Nere, Italy, 2006: Light silky tannins with aromas of flowers. Smoke, with dark fruits.

2004 Arcadian Winery Pinot Noir Fiddlestix Vineyard, Santa Rita Hills, CA: Medium,

dense, chewy red with blackberry and cherry aromas and flavors. Licorice and smoky minerals. Let breath, drink now.

Grgich Hills Napa Valley Merlot 2002:

Strawberries and cherries, smooth tannins. Long finish.

Full-bodied ripe tannins. Well balanced and smooth. Excellent.

The Colonial Estate Explorateur Shiraz 2004:

2003 Château Pontet-Canet, France: Dark ruby with red fruit

Purple color with spicy fruits. Round mouthfeel and tannins. Velvety smooth finish. Drink well for years.

Seghesio Barolo La Villa, 2004, Italy: Nose of flowers and licorice with ripe fruit.

and vanilla. Earth with spice. Very long finish. Decant.

1999 Chateau St. Jean Cabernet Sauvignon Cinq Cépages: Earthy flavor. Long

finish. Dark cherry and currant with


Giovanni Corino Barolo Vigna Giachini 2003: Well

balanced. Strawberry on the nose. Full-bodied, chewy tannins, and long finish.

Young’s Vineyard Barbera, CA: Blackberries and tar. Fruity with round tannins.

Real Men Cook— Blackberry Cornbread

by Patrick Snider

2 cups self-rising white cornmeal 1/2 cup sugar 5 large eggs 1 (16-oz.) container sour cream 1/2 cup melted butter 2 cups fresh blackberries Preheat oven to 450°. Stir together cornmeal and sugar in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture. Whisk together eggs, sour cream, and oil; add to cornmeal mixture, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in blackberries. Spoon batter into a lightly greased 12-inch cast-iron skillet. Bake at 450° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, shielding with aluminum foil after 25 minutes to prevent excessive

browning, if necessary. Blackberry Cornbread Muffins: Prepare batter as directed. Coat two muffin pans with vegetable cooking spray; spoon batter into muffin pans, filling three-fourths full. Bake at 450° for 15 to 17 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Cool in pan on a wire rack five minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack. Makes two dozen muffins. Bake: 15 min. Cool: 5 min. Delicious with peach preserves. Yield: Makes 8 to 10 servings

Blackberry Cornbread

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400 Edition May 2010  

The weather forecast threatened rain on Saturday, April 17, and we had made plans to shoot this cover. Of course, it didn’t rain, it was bri...