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Georgia Mountain Laurel August 2021 • Volume Eighteen • Issue Eight

Hello! Whew! It’s hot and I am sweaty. Sweaty isn’t pretty on me but it makes me appreciate the air inside. I hope you are all staying cool and enjoying summer. It’ll be gone before we know it, replaced with cooler nights and shorter days. This issue features some extraordinary homes, our service professionals, good food, family and friends. We are grateful to you, our readers, for looking for our magazine each month, for taking it home with you and supporting our supporters! Our advertisers are why you have this magazine in your hands right now. Tell them thanks when you visit them. So from here join Peter for his monthly Adventure, cook with Lorie and Scarlett, laugh with Emory, be amazed by the Holloways and enjoy all of the other great articles in this issue. I’ve been thinking about my good friend Bud Attonito, I hope you had the good fortune to know and love him. Bud never finished talking with me without leaving me with God Bless so... Thanks and God Bless, Tracy

Georgia Mountain Laurel Mailing: PO Box 2218, Clayton, Georgia 30525 Office: 2511 Highway 441, Mountain City, Georgia 30562 706-782-1600 • Contributing Writers: Emory Jones, Jan Timms, Lorie Thompson, Dick Cinquina, Liz Alley, Mark Holloway, Suzanne Lynne Scott, Tricia Moore, Kendall R. Rumsey, Dr. Brad Speed, Dr. Kevin E. Hurt

STAFF Publisher/Editor - Marketing - Tracy McCoy Art Director - Dianne VanderHorst Graphics - Lucas McCoy Marketing & Office Manager - Cindi Freeman Assistant Office Manager - D’Anna Coleman Writer - John Shivers Photographer/Writer - Peter McIntosh

Copyright 2021 by Rabun’s Laurel Inc. All rights reserved. The Georgia Mountain Laurel Magazine is published twelve times per year. Reproduction without the permission of the publisher is prohibited. The publishers and editors are not responsible for unsolicited material and it will be treated as unconditionally assigned for publication subject to GML magazine’s right to edit. Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, photographs and drawings. Every effort has been made to assure that all information presented in this issue is accurate, and neither Laurel magazine or any of its staff is responsible for omissions or information that has been misrepresented to the magazine. The Georgia Mountain Laurel maintains a Christian focus throughout their magazine. Rabun’s Laurel, Inc. reserves the right to refuse content or advertising for any reason without explanation.

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Arts & Entertainment 16 20 22

The Art of Making it Home NGAG - Cathy Jowers There is Peace... A Young Woman’s Journey

Laurel Homes 26 30 34 38

Paradise in the Mountains Strike Gold with This Treasure of a Home Live the Good Life Alongside the ‘Hooch Featured Professionals

Southern Cuisine 44 48

Bon Appétit The Family Table


Faith in Christ 52 54 56 58

Rabun For the Gospel River Garden Life is a Blessing His Last Days

Just Thinking 60 62 64

All the “FEELS” of August By The Way Lovin’ The Journey

Outdoorsy 66

Adventure Out


Live Healthy and Be Well 70 72 74

Psoriatic Disease The Benefits of Christian Counseling Pet Health - Busting the Myths of Parasites

Looking Back 78


Rabun County Historical Society – A Culinary Tour of 19th Century Rabun County Foxfire – Charlie Ross Hartley

Around Town 86 88 89

R&M Heating and Air Cherokee Heritage Festival Of These Mountains Fall Marketplace

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Sometimes Mismatched Is Just What Your Home Needs

Create a reflection of your life. By Tracy McCoy

I am the worst person in the world to write a home décor article. I’ve never been considered a source for decorating ideas but there are a few things I am learning that have made a difference in my home. I am hooked on HGTV®, their show Hometown with Ben and Erin Napier. My local sources are Timpson Creek Gallery, Dogwoods Home, Reeves Furniture, Hartford House and Wood’s Mercantile! I watch what they do with their showrooms and bring ideas home. Each one of these stores offers interior decorating services I might add. I have purchased furnishings and accessories for my home at each of these locations. I truly love to shop local. The Hometown show is a favorite in our home. We’ve watched every episode at least three times, yet each time I see something I didn’t see the first time. Erin is gifted at capturing the heart of the future homeowner and incorporating some personal treasures into the décor. She also stays true to the home’s period. For instance

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if the home they are remodeling is a 1950s structure they keep what is sound and replace to match it, keeping the flavor of the decade in which it was built. Often they peel away layers of paint or sheet rock to uncover rich oak tongue and grove or they rip up flooring to find gorgeous hardwood underneath. I am so inspired to create a sanctuary for my family, thus my home is always a work in progress! Earlier I spoke of treasures. I have two that come to mind. One is a sewing box that was my mother’s. I am certain it was handed down to her from either her own mother or grandmother. It is old and one of the legs is broken. I keep thinking I’ll take it to The Furniture Barn to get it repaired but that is on that never ending list of to-dos. Inside the box were tiny spools of assorted thread, a needle threader and various size needles. I can not sew at all! So mama’s sewing box now holds ink pens, flash drives and things on

my desk at home. It spent a decade or two on the top shelf of my closet. Hidden away for safe keeping. What I have come to realize is this… that piece will not mean anything to my descendants. It will end up thrown away or put in a yard sale someday. I should enjoy it now. Another such piece is a clock that my dad received when he had 25 years in at his job at General Motors in Michigan. He was very proud to have been given the recognition for his efforts. This clock was part of my life. It sat on our console television right next to the rabbit ears throughout most of the 70s. If wound up with a tool that hung on the inside of the back door of the clock it would chime every 15 minutes. I can still hear it. That clock was a mainstay, a treasure that moved with us and always sat where my dad could see it. When Alzheimer’s disease stole many of his most precious memories and he wanted to go “home” I used his clock to assure him we were indeed already home. He would look at it and be appeased for a short while. If this clock could talk it would have many stories to tell. Today it sets in the corner of my living room in plain view. Does it match the things around it? No, but it helps to make my house a home. That is the most valuable decorating tip I have learned… above all else, make it yours! Of course you might not want a purple couch and yellow chairs but then again maybe you could pull that together. Making your home where you are happiest is what it’s all about. I have taken a fancy to throw pillows. My husband does not see the appeal but that’s ok, they make me joyful. None of them match and they all came from different places. I am not sure how many more I can fit on the sofa, but time will tell. Two came from Hobby Lobby®, one from the General Store in Tallulah Falls (handmade by a local maker), another I picked up at Reeves Furniture and the last one I found at Angel Oak Home in downtown Toccoa. Looking around my home you see things from mostly local businesses, all pieces that are different but blend together to make it home. Another place of peacefulness and rest is my porch. Again a plethora of mismatched items adorn this space. A porch swing I purchased at Reeves Hardware a decade ago and stained a rich dark pecan, an outdoor table and chairs that belonged to my step-mother and holds so many memories of dinners shared with family, and flowers that are reminiscent of my Granny Speed who loved her flowers! I have signs that remind me of my blessings and a straw rug I picked up at Madison’s on Main that defines a southern porch. The rug is imprinted with this sentiment “The Porch – sit – relax – gossip”. Not long ago while browsing a shop in Dillard called Porch and Patio I found a pitcher and peach tree branches. I loved the two together and wanted to add it to my kitchen so it ended up in the car and now brings a smile to my face each day. When it comes to selecting paint colors, fabric swatches, window treatments and floor coverings I would recommend you seek the guidance of a professional who is gifted at creating a beautiful home, but day to day, when you see that piece that speaks to you, grab it! Maybe it reminds you of a favorite memory or it just lights your fire, make it part of your sweet spot. It’s likely I’ll die with a project nearing completion, but that too makes me happy cause I am always making it homey and making it mine. Publisher’s note: For a list of some of our best home service providers and places to shop see our Guide to Professionals in this issue.

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North Georgia Arts Guild

Painted Moments: The Art of Cathy Jowers By Tricia Moore

Alabama, Cathy has called Rabun County her home for most of her adult life. Having met John Jowers, the love of her life in college, she married him and moved here to Rabun County, where he is from. She secured a position as an art teacher in the Rabun County School System and taught for four years. But then in 2086 something happened that turned her world upside down. She had a stroke - which was caused by a complication from giving birth to her second child. Recovery from that stroke was a long, hard road where she had to “relearn many skills and processes, including drawing and painting.” She points out that one never completely gets over the effects of a stroke.

Cathy Jowers is an artist who works mainly with acrylics. She loves to paint special moments in time, especially those which feature children and animals. Her two beautiful Australian Shepherds provide a great source of inspiration, as does her little Jack Russell with his cute expressive face. The wonder and delight of childhood is communicated through Cathy’s paintings of children, with her own grandchildren providing the perfect models for her work. A friend’s horse that grazes contentedly on the Jower’s eight acres figures prominently in her paintings as well. Cathy’s love for painting and affection for her subject matter is apparent in her beautiful and inviting art. Cathy states that she has loved art and being creative all her life. She can remember painting with glitter paint with her mother when she was only three years old. Her mother, being an artist herself, greatly influenced Cathy in her creative pursuits. After high school, where she took as many art classes as she could, Cathy attended Auburn University and studied Interior Design. She switched her major to Art Education earning a Bachelor’s degree in that field and later received her Masters in Art Education from Piedmont College. As idyllic as the world she paints appears, it has been a long, and sometimes arduous, journey for Cathy to get to the point in her artistic endeavors that she is today. Originally from Huntsville,

During the time Cathy was working on regaining her artistic skills, she opened her own clothing boutique in Clayton, and managed it for 13 years. She decided to go back into teaching art, and continued in this until her retirement in 2018. Due to her stroke, Cathy’s painting style changed. Before, her work was more structured and realistic. Now she describes it as ranging from “slightly painterly to more impressionistic.” While she was still teaching, she painted several murals in the schools where she taught. The larger canvas and paint strokes used in painting murals suited her better than the smaller detailed work she had done before her stroke. In the lovely home that Cathy and her husband have built and added to over the years, she has a spacious art studio where she does her painting. There is plenty of room to spread out her paints and canvases and even invite some friends in to enjoy painting with her. The room is so warm and inviting, filled as it is with art materials and Cathy’s paintings, it is difficult to not want to just stay a while and breathe it all in. It is truly a wonderful reflection of Cathy the person, the artist, wife, mother, grandmother and pet owner. Cathy’s love of art and determination as an artist led her to overcome many obstacles to create the amazingly beautiful and heartwarming art that she does today. Her artist statement sums it up well. “My journey as an artist since then [the stroke] has led me through many ups and downs. Ultimately, God has shown me new directions and discoveries as I continue to develop as an artist. My focus is on painting with acrylics or mixed media. My subjects range from flowers and landscapes to my current fascination with pets and children. I love capturing moments of life that draw the viewer into the world of the subject.” More of Cathy’s artwork can be seen on her website at www.

Tricia Moore is a retired teacher, having taught both English and art in public and private school settings. She is currently an active member of the NGAG and has held several positions on the board. With her background in both art and writing, she feels that writing the NGAG featured artist article in The Georgia Mountain Laurel is a good fit and something that she will greatly enjoy doing.

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There is peace… A young woman’s journey.

Samantha Jane Buice is an author and an artist. Attending the Savannah Arts Academy and majoring in Fine Art at Armstrong State University created an outstanding artist. Her books are a result of years of battles with “Berman”, her mental illness. The stigma that accompanies mental disorders is more disturbing than the illness itself. It is the most misunderstood illness we face. This is what prompted Samantha to share her experiences through her books. Her goal was to share first hand knowledge she has acquired along the way with others who suffer and the families who fight to understand. Samantha will not be defined by her illness rather her person as a whole, which is a beautiful young woman who is talented, enjoys producing art, writing, exploring nature and sharing her life with her husband Rush Smith and their little “dragon” Logan. Samantha shares in her books the journey one goes through while battling the highs and lows of anxiety, depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The feelings that come with being ostracized from society and labeled “crazy” because you are different. On

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this journey Jane, the character in her book, learns it is ok to be different. In fact being different can be beautiful, a life that can be lived with peace and solidarity is possible. “There’s no such thing as normal. There’s no such thing as crazy. We’re all a little in-between, and the line is very hazy.” a quote by the author that speaks great truth. Her journey has been long and torturous at times. Through therapy and medication, Samantha is no longer defined by her illness, rather today she thrives and has a beautiful life. Her illness will always be a part of who she is but it is a small piece of a large puzzle. Samantha is a woman who has taken her life back. Samantha’s books are available on her website where you’ll also find her blog ( Her books, Remember Who You Are and The Tail of a Dragon and His Girl can also be purchased at Soque Artworks in Clarkesville, Georgia. She is available for speaking engagements and is always happy to answer questions. You can e-mail her at

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Paradise in the Mountains by Lorie Thompson

This exquisite Blue Ridge Gap farm offers the safe and secure location you desire for your family with easy access from anywhere in the World. Located on the valley floor, just below the Blue Ridge Divide, the farm is a short drive to Clayton, Dillard, Lake Burton, and less than two miles from a private airstrip with a 5000’ ft paved runway. The high elevation, mountain setting brings all four seasons to the farm with moderate temperatures in the Summer and just enough Winter to keep it enjoyable! The main home, sited on top of the “Sound of Music” knoll, has panoramic views from each room. “Old-world” style combines with modern luxury in the 6200+ sq ft home. The exterior finish is real stucco, created by a master-craftsman from Romania. The fine architectural detail, combined with the elegant landscaping and the beauty of the setting, combine to create an extraordinary home!

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Upon entering, you recognize a combination of elegance and comfort. Warm hues of wood are highlighted in the vaulted ceilings with exposed beams and the wide plank wood floors. Arched doorways and floor-to-ceiling windows showcase the views of the surrounding meadows and mountains. The main level of this home provides all the living amenities required for daily life. The spacious, master suite has two separate baths, dressing areas, and closets. Floor to ceiling glass opens to the terrace with an outdoor fireplace. The kitchen is designed for beauty and ease of use, with abundant counter space and room for a family table. This Keeping Room is open to an informal family area with comfortable seating, a game table, and extensive views! There are 3 additional guest rooms in the main home with private baths, patios, and all with a view! The service areas of the home are just as nice as the entertaining areas. A large butler’s pantry, a beautiful laundry room with built-ins, and tons of storage space make everyday living easy. The oversized, finished two-car garage features an office suite above, perfect for overflow guests or a private office. This home offers a combination of elegance and comfort in beautiful surroundings. There are two log homes on the farm. One is a custom home built by Anthony McCracken. Anthony is locally well-known for his unique and high-quality log construction. The cabin sits stream-side with the babbling water as a backdrop. There are wrap-around porches with blue rockers and ferns welcoming you to sit a spell alongside the front entry. The side porch has a floor-to-ceiling, dry-stacked, stone fireplace offering a perfect spot for an Al Fresco dinner. The interior, with its fireplace and cathedral ceilings in the great room and the cozy country kitchen, makes you dream of snowy afternoons in the mountains. The third home on the farm is the antique log studio. It is an antique home that was relocated to the farm and erected using the original logs on new stone foundations. It overlooks a lovely vineyard and is centrally located on the farm. This farm has not one, but three barns including a timber frame that was moved from Upstate New York to the Blue Ridge Gap Farm. It served as a dairy barn and is reputed to have been built in the late 1700s. The joinery of the huge oak beams is incredible. This is a perfect “event” site or the perfect backdrop for an antique tractor collection. The horse barn is a treat for your equine friends. A large, sand riding ring and a multitude of trails crisscrossing the farm offer a great area for riding. There are run-in sheds scattered around the farm for the horses or donkeys. All farms need a real work barn and storage sheds and this farm has them tucked up in one of the mountain hollows. There is ample enclosed storage for mowers, tractors, and equipment. There are state-approved gasoline and diesel tanks for farm equipment use. If you are looking for a fun evening, ride your UTV to the look-out tower on the mountaintop, build a bonfire and watch the sunset over the valley. Or, try your luck fishing in one of the ponds. The attention to detail and quality here is amazing! There are multiple wells, generators, and solar power to assure that the systems for the farm are operable even in power failures. The road system is finished with a deep layer of Hiawassee “Blue” gravel. The cobble-stoned ditches and culvert heads and finished edging along the roads offer a polished look. All entrances are gated. Call Lorie Thompson at Poss Realty for more information on this legacy property. Listing film available. 706-782-2121 - office phone or on her mobile phone at 706-490-1820.

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Professionals – for your Home

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Strike Gold with This Treasure of a Home By John Shivers

The stunning orange and vibrant purple sunset views down Dick’s Creek Cove, as viewed from this Bobby McAlpine custom-designed home at 2833 Blalock Goldmine Road at Lake Burton, make picture postcards pale by comparison. What’s more, when you’re in residence at this 6,776± square foot lakeside haven, your sunrises as well as your mid-day vistas hold unmistakable promise of pristine beauty and solace of soul. You’ll feel like you’ve stumbled onto your own personal goldmine. How could it get any better? With six super-sized, luxurious bedrooms, six full baths with spa-like appointments, along with two half-baths, this tri-level home harkens toward European architectural inspiration. The home extends a warm and comfortable welcome, both by land and by lake, with a myriad of views that both satisfy and cause you to yearn for more. This property delivers and then some.

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Hospitality central in this magnificent home is the soaring, two-story living room anchored by a massive stacked stone wall containing a masonry fireplace. The adjacent raised dining room shares the same space, and takes advantage of the soaring expanses of glass that overlook the historic lake waters that have drawn so many for good times and fantastic living. Holding up its end of the deal, the chef’s kitchen shares the same white shiplap walls that predominate throughout this executive quality home, and dark-stained, antique beams overhead add to the room’s personality. An oversize multi-functional island with a walnut top, sub-zero refrigerator, two sinks, a six-burner gas cook top and double ovens set the tone for some serious cooking and entertaining. An under-counter icemaker, standard dishwasher, backed up by a set of dishwasher drawers, a walk-in pantry, appliance closet, coffee bar, and organized storage lend additional assistance to the culinary tasks. Adding yet more entertaining possibilities, the screened porch, accessed by antique French doors, opens off the kitchen. A stone fireplace, TV, lounging area, dining area and easy access to a grilling deck ramp up the hospitality options. A beautifully landscaped waterfall, one of two, creates a background of white noise, and serves up the ultimate in serenity. Elsewhere on the main level is the private owner’s suite with its own fireplace, sitting area, built-in bookcases, separate walk-in closets, en suite bath with separate vanities, jetted tub, separate shower, and water closet. Lake views are courtesy of huge windows, as well as a private balcony just off the bedroom. A similarly appointed private guest suite, and secondary sleeping quarters, plus the third floor playroom and bunk room further increase entertaining potential. The multi-windowed office has a full en suite bath and could be used as an additional bedroom. On the terrace level, two more guest bedrooms and baths, a fantastic family room with masonry fireplace, and arched windows enjoy the lake views. An extensive wet bar and adjacent wine cellar is convenient to the outdoor patio area with fireplace, and the nearby two-level, two-stall, deep water boathouse. A lower level workshop offers multiple possibilities, and includes a large garage door for easy and convenient access. Use it as a workshop, or convert it into a gym or recreation room. It could easily become another kitchen, geared to service the boathouse that features a partially covered entertaining deck with under counter refrigerator and dining, with more of those sunset views. A diving dock makes it easy and safe to enjoy an invigorating swim in the Burton waters. Contact Agent Julie Barnett at Harry Norman, REALTORS® Luxury Lake and Mountain at 404-697-3860 or at the office, 706-212-0228, for an opportunity to tour MLS #9011749. The elegant ambience of this home is worth its weight in gold.

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Professionals – for your Home

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Live the Good Life Alongside the ‘Hooch By John Shivers

Whether you’re astride your favorite steed, cantering across the rolling pasture lands with northeast Georgia’s beautiful mountains in the distance, sitting on the front porch of the main house, or casting your fishing line into the Chattahoochee River, life at 928 River Bridge Trail, Sautee Nacoochee, Georgia becomes memorable even on an ordinary day. Now, this beautifullydeveloped, well-maintained 21-acre piece of rural equestrian paradise can be yours. Take a closer look, and you’ll find country living at its best in this home located within the Nachoochee Hills neighborhood. With a 5,000± square foot three level main house, and the one bedroom, one bath apartment over the four-stall barn, there are opportunities for living in every sense of the word. Factor in that this property is less than 90 miles from Atlanta, and there can be little doubt: you just gotta be here.

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From its White County location in the scenic and historic Nacoochee Valley, a truly exceptional lifestyle and numerous recreational opportunities await. And when you need to “go to town,” Clarkesville, Helen and Cleveland are within easy driving distance. Talk about the best of both worlds! Approach the main house, located far off the public road, and you immediately know you’re in the south, thanks to the very traditional architecture of this five bedroom, four and one-half bath home. From the rocking chair front porch to the deck on the back that’s ideal for cookouts and family dining, there’s a heap of living going on in between. Beginning with the inviting two-story foyer with leaded glass sidelights, a formal dining area, light-filled two-story great room with architectural bay windows that frame and present exquisite views, spacious kitchen and a master suite, it just gets better.

The kitchen with solid surface countertops, a full complement of appliances, and an adjacent breakfast area, make feeding all the friends and family who flock to this retreat an easy task. The private main floor owner’s suite includes a sitting area, a private screened porch, and an en suite bath with a soaking tub, oversize separate shower, double vanity, and a walk-in closet. The upper floor contains two oversize bedrooms with en suite baths. On the finished daylight terrace level, two additional bedrooms bring the sleeping spaces to five. A central living area with an outside entrance on this level doubles as a media room, perfect for watching the big game on an autumn Georgia day, or for binge-watching your favorite TV program on a rainy weekend afternoon. A second kitchen and dining area, and ample storage space complete this level This property was created with the horse lover in mind, from beginner to advanced, with twelve acres of gentle, fenced pasture and a large lighted riding ring. A raised center aisle barn includes

four over-sized stalls, tack room, equipment room and two sheds. Upstairs, a spacious studio apartment with a full kitchen and bathroom can be utilized in various ways, and is heated and cooled for year-round comfort. And if horses aren’t your main interest, perhaps one thousand feet of Chattahoochee River frontage would be more to your liking. Bait your hook and fish for the beautiful trout that populate this waterway. Then there’s kayaking, paddle boarding, tubing and swimming in waters overhung with beautiful trees that only enhance the pleasure factor of a cool river on a northeast Georgia summer day. Listing agent Meghann Brackett at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Georgia Properties with offices in Clayton and Clarkesville stands ready to show this exceptional opportunity. Her cell phone number is 706-968-1870 and the office number is 706-778-4171. Her email address is Reference MLS #8990855.

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The benefit of choosing a professional cannot be overstated. How many times have you tried the DIY route only to find you spent three times as much money and then had to hire a professional to fix the mess you made? Now I know some of you are skilled at many things. My husband is pretty handy too, but there comes a time when it is necessary to leave your home repair, redesign, or project to the pros! Rabun and our surrounding counties are rich with well trained, highly skilled professionals for just about anything you need to accomplish. Literally from the ground up! Whether you need grading or hauling services, a company or contractor who can build your home or you are planning a full remodel you will find quality companies that can meet your needs. Maybe you are in the planning process and need an architect, we can recommend one. If new flooring, paint and window treatments are on your list you’ll find them here. Building, maintaining and upgrading, even protecting your home requires many services and professionals. You can rest assured that the professionals found on our list are some of the finest in our area. We encourage you to call to get the ball rolling, visit to find that perfect piece of furniture or schedule that consultation. We hope you’ll find this list offers the information you need to research and reach a qualified, licensed professional. Amrine’s Equipment Rental Address – 366 South Main Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.782.3157 Web/E-mail – site Services – equipment rental and sales, small engine repair Bill’s Aluminum Address – 3791 Highlands Road, Franklin, NC 28734 Phone – 828.524.8074 Web/E-mail – Services – porch and patio enclosures, PGT dealer, eze breeze vinyl sliding panels, screen rooms, under deck roof systems, screen and sun rooms, carport and RV covers Blossman Gas Address – 66 Rickman Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.782.8305 or toll free at 800.369.8305 Web/E-mail – Services – propane gas, appliance sales, and service Christine’s Home Decor Address – 9958 Georgia Road, Otto, NC 28763 Phone – 828.524.7007

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Web/E-mail – www.ChristinesHomeDecor. com Services – drapery, upholstery and shades Clayton Paint and Flooring Address – 135 E Savannah Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.782.2741 Web/E-mail – www.claytonpaintandflooring. com Services – Ben Moore paints and stains and other quality coatings, carpets, custom rugs, wood flooring, waterproof plank flooring, vinyl, tile, natural stone flooring and in-stock flooring available

Deal’s Appliance Address – 5418 Hwy 441, Wiley, GA 30581 Phone – 706.782.3760 Web/E-mail – www.dealsapplianceservice. com, Services – appliance sales and appliance service Dogwoods Home Address – 41 N. Main Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706-960-9232 Web/E-mail – www.shopdogwoodshome. com Services – Home furnishings and décor

Clayton Welding Address – 1265 W. Highway 76, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.782.3431 Web/E-mail – www.claytonweldingsupply. com Services – aluminum and stainless welding, welding and steel supplies, CO2, Oxygen and Acetylene gases, boat hoist, helium

Emery’s Woodworks Address – 5312 Hwy 441 S, Tiger, GA 30576 Phone – 706.982.2942 Web/E-mail – | Services – custom furniture and design, countertops, unique slab and lumber sales, millworks, beams, fireplace mantels, handcrafted signs and a mulch yard

Dakota Freeman Enterprises Phone – 706.982.4502 Web/E-mail – Find us on facebook @dakota freeman enterprises Services – driveway maintenance, gravel and dirt, skid steer and hauling needs

Eric Watson Architect, P.A. Address – Lakemont, Georgia & Seagrove, Florida Phone – 706-782-1731 | 850-213-0004 Web/E-mail – | eric@

Erwin Heating and Air Address – Clarkesville, GA 30523 Phone – 706.499.2247 Web/E-mail – Find us on facebook @ erwinheatingandair Services – Residential and Commercial HVAC installation and service Furniture Barn Address –5842 Georgia Road, Franklin, NC 28734 Phone – 828.634-4037 Web/E-mail – Services – furniture stripping, refinishing and furniture repair Georgia Mountain Home Builders Phone – 706.782.9260 Web/E-mail –  www.GeorgiaMountainHBA. com Services – find a Georgia licensed contractor Hartford House Furniture Address – 126 Anderson Circle, Alto, GA 30510 Phone – 877-223-0008 Web/E-mail – www.harfordhousefurniture. com Services – custom home furnishings, interior decorating service Jack’s Upholstery Address – 25 Peach Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.982.0933 Web/E-mail – Find us on Facebook @ jacksupholstery Services – upholstery for automotive, marine, furniture, RV and ATV Metro Water Filters Phone – 706.499.5146, 888.604.8043 Web/E-mail – Services – water filtration product sales and water filtration service Mountain Lawn Care Phone: 706-982-9215 Services - lawn maintenance services Mountain Spring Spas and Pools Address – 611 Highlands Road, Franklin, NC 28734 Phone – 828.369.2871 Web/E-mail –  www.mountainhotspring. com, Services – pool and spa care products, pool and spa repair services and spa sales

Mountain Works Phone – 706.892.7219 Web/E-mail – www.mtnworksconstruction. com,,  christy@mtnworksconstruction. Services – new custom homes, boathouses, remodeling and additions, outdoor living spaces. Northeast Georgia Heating and Air Address – 4047 HWY 441 N, Rabun Gap, GA 30568 Phone – 706.782.7825 Web/E-mail –,  info@ Services – heating, cooling, furnace and air conditioning installation, repair and maintenance Ogram Interiors Address – Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 404-931-6442 | 706-851-9923 Web/E-mail – www.ograminteriordesign. com | Services – interior design and architectural interior design Porch Living 24/7/365 Address –  118 N. Valley St., Clayton, GA, 30525 Phone – 706.576.7276 Web/E-mail –  www.rabunbuilders. com/, Services – porch enclosures, vinyl panels, homebuilder, remodeling Property Stewards Address – Tiger, GA Phone – 706.490.7060 Web/E-mail – Services – interior and exterior cleaning: housekeeping, gutter cleaning, pressure washing, ongoing property repair and maintenance R&M Heating and Cooling Address –  65 Village Way, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.490.2584 Web/E-mail–www.RandMHeatingandCooling. com Services – heating and cooling installation and services,  sell and service generators, air filtration systems, humidifiers, and dehumidifiers

Rabun C&D Address – Tiger, GA 30576 Phone – 706.490.5552 Services – rental containers and disposal for construction sites, yard waste and clearing debris Rabun Flooring Address – 57 W Savannah Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706.782.4706 Web/E-mail – Services – carpet, waterproof, laminate, wood and vinyl flooring, also carry a large selection of in-stock flooring Randy’s Gas and Steel Address – 5312 Hwy 441 S, Tiger, GA 30576 @ emery’s woodworks Phone – 706.982.0899, 706.982.2942 Web/E-mail – Services – steel and gas sales and custom metalworks Reeves Furniture Address – 16 S. Main Street, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706-782-4253 Web – | www. Services – home furnishings & accessories, interior design/decorating services Smith Ramey Plumbing Address –  260 Thornwood Circle, Mt Airy, GA 30563 Phone – 706.490.1041 Services – plumbing services Timpson Creek Gallery Address - 7142 Hwy 76, Clayton, GA 30525 Phone – 706-782-5164 Web/E-mail – | Services – custom home furnishings, Interior decorating services Tyler Services Phone – 678.316.781 Services – landscaping, lawn care, irrigation and property management Wood’s Mercantile Address -1475 North Washington Street, Clarkesville, GA 30523 Phone – 706-754-4144 Web/E-mail. - | Services - Home furnishings and accessories

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Bon Appétit

Where Has the Summer Gone? By Scarlett Cook It seems like only yesterday that school was over, but in a few weeks the school bell will ring again. I know that most parents are ready for normal school routines to start, and I think if most children were honest, they want to go back to a regular school routine as well. So take a deep breath and be thankful that routine and normal are two words that we all want to be able to use in our conversations every day.

Grilled Pork Tenderloins 3 – 4 Servings 2 Tablespoons soy sauce 2 Tablespoons dark brown sugar 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil 2 Tablespoons honey 1/2 Teaspoon garlic salt 1/2 Teaspoon nutmeg 1 1-Pound pork tenderloin or two smaller tenderloins Combine soy sauce, sugar, oil, honey, garlic salt and nutmeg in a shallow container and stir well. Add tenderloin and chill 8 hours, rotating tenderloin once during chilling. Remove tenderloin from marinade, discarding liquid. Grill for 35 minutes or until done, turning often. Let pork sit for ten minutes, then slice and serve. Optional – serve meat with Chinese mustard and / or sweet-and-sour-sauce.

Squash Casserole 6 Servings 2 Pounds yellow squash, sliced 1/2” thick 1/2 Cup chopped onion 1/2 Cup water 8 Ounces sour cream 1/2 Teaspoon salt 1/4 Teaspoon pepper 1/2 Teaspoon dried basil 1 Cup bread crumbs 1/2 Cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese 1/3 Cup melted margarine 1/2 Teaspoon paprika 8 Slices cooked bacon crumbled Preheat oven to 350˚ and grease a 2 quart casserole dish. Cook squash and onion in 1/2 cup water until tender; drain well and mash. Combine squash sour cream, salt, pepper and basil and pour into prepared pan. Combine breadcrumbs, cheese, butter and paprika and sprinkle over squash. Top with bacon and bake for 20 minutes.

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Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad 10 – 12 Servings 1 Cup mayonnaise 1/2 Cup sour cream 1 Envelope Italian salad dressing mix 1 Cup chopped Vidalia onion 2 Tablespoons minced parsley 1 1/2 Pounds fresh broccoli florets 1 Head cauliflower cute into florets 1 Cup shredded Mozzarella Combine mayo, sour cream, onion, dressing mix and parsley stirring well. Combine vegetables and cheese; add mayo mixture and blend well. Chill at least 4 hours before serving.

“Company” Bread 8 Servings 1/2 of 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened 2 Tablespoons butter, softened 1 Egg yolk 1 Teaspoon finely minced onion 1/4 Teaspoon thyme 8 -1” Slices French bread Combine cream cheese, butter, egg yolk, onion and thyme, mixing well. Spread 1 Tablespoon on each slice of bread. Place on a baking sheet and broil 2 – 3 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Strawberry Pie 8 Servings 1 Small package strawberry Jello 1 Cup boiling water 1/2 Cup cold water 1 8-Ounce container Cool Whip, thawed 1 Cup fresh strawberries 1 9” Graham cracker pie shell Dissolve gelatin in boiling water; add cold water and stir well. Chill until the consistency of unbeaten egg white. Fold in Cool Whip and strawberries. Spoon into crust and chill at least 4 hours before serving.

“August rain: the best of the summer gone, and the new fall not yet born. The odd uneven time.” Sylvia Plath August 2021 - - 45

A Taste of the Mountains 46 - August 2021

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The Family Table By Lorie Thompson

When you think of Summer, you probably think of swimming at the lake, trips to the beach, cookouts, and cold watermelon. When I think of Summer, I think of tomatoes, corn, and green beans. Like many other native mountain people, my parents grew a big Summer garden and preserved the food. So, canning, freezing, and drying food is as much a part of Summer as swimming and eating watermelon. I have spent many summer days stringing beans, shucking corn, and canning tomatoes. I was not too fond of it as a teenager, but now that my parents are gone, I realize what a treasure that time together was: Sitting on the porch, hearing old family stories being told to the rhythm of the beans snapping and hitting the old metal dishpan. Not long after Mountain Man and I married, we planted our first garden, sharing it with my Mama and Daddy. We plowed up an acre of Daddies pastureland and planted corn, green beans, tomatoes, squash, peppers and cucumbers. Daddy and Mountain Man worked in it every day, and it was very productive. When the corn ripened, the four of us spent an afternoon shucking and silking a full pick-up load of corn. We cut it off the cob, making the thick creamed corn that we loved. Mama and I had the creamed corn in big pots, cooking and carefully stirring to keep it from sticking. We finished cooking the last batch around midnight. The corn was still piping hot and could not be put into the freezer containers until it cooled. Mama told us to go on home, and she would let it cool and put it in the freezer early in the morning. I arrived at her house early the following day and knew the moment I saw her that something was wrong. The corn had soured during the night. The top layer of each pot had cooled, but it soured in the middle before it cooled. It was not salvageable. We learned a hard lesson. We now cook our corn in small batches and pour it into long shallow bowls to allow it to cool faster. Mountain Man and I gave up growing corn several years ago. We have so many bears and raccoons around our house that it is impossible to keep them out of it. Each year, just as the corn got ripe, the critters made a midnight raid and helped themselves. Now, we buy corn from Osage. I make creamed corn for the freezer and several crocks of fermented or “pickled” corn. It gives us a little taste of Summer all through the cold seasons. One of my favorites of Mama’s Summer work was her Icicle Pickles and Green Tomato Pickles. She used the same recipe for both, and they are equally great. The Icicle Pickles use overgrown cucumbers. Many neighbors would bring Mama bags of cucumbers that had gotten too big, and she made something extraordinary out of them. She peeled them, cut them in half, hulled out the seeds and pith, and then sliced them into neat sticks. You can use the same recipe

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for the cucumber sticks or with green tomato slices. If you make the cucumber pickle, make sure to cut your “sticks” to fit the length of your canning jar. The recipe is for 7 pounds of cucumbers or tomatoes. Wash them and cut them into slices for the tomatoes or sticks for the cucumbers. Add 3 cups of pickling lime to 2 gallons of water. (I made a half batch, so I mixed 1.5 Cups of lime with one gallon of water and cut the brine mixture in half.) Stir to combine and then cover the tomatoes or cucumbers. Let sit for 12 hours. Rinse using cold water until the water is clear. Drain well. Cover with ice and allow to sit for another 12 hours. Drain again, removing as much water as possible. Prepare your brine. In a large boiler, bring 5 pounds of sugar and 3 Quarts of white vinegar to a rolling boil. Add 2-3 T of pickling spice directly to the pot, or wrap the spices in a cheesecloth bundle if you prefer. Add the tomato slices or pickle sticks and continue to cook until the slices are semi-translucent—1 to 1.5 hours on medium-low to medium heat, dependent on the size of the batch. Turn off the heat and allow to sit for several hours.

When you are ready to jar them, re-heat to boiling and place the hot pickles in sterilized hot jars. Wipe any liquid off the rim before putting the lid on it. Place the jar lid on, and finger tighten the ring. Place the jar on a thick towel and cover with another towel. Allow the jars to cool naturally. After cooling, check each jar to make sure they sealed. If you have a seal fail, refrigerate and use the pickles. I love these with a sandwich, soup beans, or straight out of the jar! The icicle pickles are the star of tuna salad, deviled eggs, and so much more! If you have a surplus of cherry tomatoes, here is a beautiful appetizer to share with your family. Place tomatoes in a small black iron skillet or oven-safe dish. Drizzle olive oil all over the tomatoes, being generous. Salt the tomatoes with sea salt or Kosher salt. Add herbs of your choice; Rosemary and Dill are great. Add crushed red pepper. Roast the tomatoes at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft. Place under the broiler for 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are blistered. Remove from the oven and stir in 1 tsp of minced fresh garlic. Add a block of whipped goat cheese with herbs. Serve with flatbread or Naan heated on a griddle or black iron skillet and cut into wedges. If you don’t have a garden, buy some string beans and have your family help you string them. Enjoy the time talking and telling stories. Cook them by covering them with water. Add a couple of chunks of smoked ham hock, a dried red pepper pod, salt, and a chopped-up onion. Cook them until the water is almost cooked out, and then cover them with a lid and simmer until time to eat. Keep just enough water in the bottom to keep them from scorching. Serve them with chopped-up tomatoes, peppers from the garden, and a Vidalia onion wedge. Best food in the South! You will get pleasure from these beans two times, once sitting with your family talking while you string them and then again at the supper table. Serve up the roasted tomatoes and goat cheese while you wait for the green beans to cook. You will be a hero to your family. May your garden flourish and your family table overflow with great food and company this Summer! I wish much love to all of you!

Lorie Thompson is a REALTOR at Poss Realty in Clayton, Georgia. Her expertise in her industry is second only to her culinary talents. Lorie is a dynamo in the kitchen. Honestly if she prepares it, it will likely be the best you’ve ever had! Lorie and her husband, Anthony (Peanut), make their home in the Persimmon Community. She is the proud mother of Joe Thompson and Kendall Thompson.

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Shop - Dine - Stay Clayton, Georgia

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How Do We Relate to This Political Season? By Dr. Kevin E. Hurt, Associate Pastor, Grace Bible Church

The Normal Things We Deal With As Christians, we find ourselves dealing with the day-to-day issues of life — anger, anxiety, depression, the need to forgive, etc. And for the most part, Christians would say that God’s Word, the Bible, provides the answers we need for those things. But what about politics? In this unique and bizarre political season that we find ourselves in, do we do the same with politics? Do we, as Christians, turn to God and His Word to make sense of these political days? In the midst of these politicized times, ranging from COVID-19 and vaccines, to the role of social media and politics, LGBTQ+, Critical Race Theory, Black Lives Matter — just to mention a few — I have found on many occasions that people are becoming more anxious, depressed, and angry, as things unfold on the political front. Others have given up on the conversation, and have become lethargic and indifferent, and have completely backed out of the conversation all together. God & Politics So, how do you direct the conversation when the topic of politics arises? Do you take the position that politics is part of the world system, and we as Christians really don’t need to get caught up in it? Do you say to that person, “You need to keep your focus on God’s kingdom and not the kingdoms of this world?” Or, do you become passionate about it and urge them to be sure they do everything they can to save our country by voting for the right person and influencing legislation? Or, is there a balance between the two? How do you help someone think Biblically about God and politics? After all, the idea of government was God’s, and He is the one who establishes all governments, not just the good ones (Romans 13:1). So, if God is the one who creates governments, and is the One who ultimately places men and/or women on the throne (Daniel 2:21; Psalm 75:7), it is a Biblical matter, and we can’t ignore the conversation about this.

A Biblical View About God & Politics * Though this brief article is not able to unpack the details, I hope that it will be helpful to us to begin to think about this issue from a Biblical and God-centered perspective. And hopefully what I’ve written below will serve as a starting point for good conversations on the various issues that we as believers are facing and will continue to face as it relates to God, the Bible, and politics. Let me do this by giving you 3 common ideas and views about God and government, and then help us see how we can better understand our Biblical role and position as Christians. View #1 — We shouldn’t expect the government to establish & support a single religion (even Christianity) — This is the compulsion view. This is expecting the government to be supportive and the promoter of a single religion. We know that Christianity is the only true gospel and way to God (John 14:6). But, it is not the government’s job to establish this truth for several reasons. Jesus made a distinction between God & Caesar (Matthew 22:21). The Bible teaches us that genuine — real and true — faith cannot be forced (Luke 9:52-55). And Jesus made it abundantly clear that His kingdom was not established by earthly powers (John 18:36). The Church is called to proclaim the gospel and make Christ known to the nations. Real and lasting change is never the result of

Kevin Hurt is Associate Pastor of Grace Bible Church located at 235 Dotson Street, Mountain City, Georgia.

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governmental establishment or support of the Church. The hope of real and lasting change is the Church taking the gospel into the world, regardless of whether the government is a good or evil one. This is to be the hope of a believer as we think about the political condition of our world. View #2 — We shouldn’t seek to change the world through political process — This is the government can save the world view. This view believes that if we get the right candidate in office, maybe even a Christian, the world will be fixed. I don’t believe this view is Biblically correct. The Scriptures teach us that lasting change in a nation will only happen if peoples’ hearts (not leaders) are changed through the gospel (2 Corinthians 5:17). I want to be clear on this — The gospel and the power of God to save and change a life is where we place our hope. But that doesn’t mean that we as Christians should drop out of the conversation and abandon the role we can have as believers in relation to politics. That leads us to point number 3. View #3 — We should see the role of God’s people, as it relates to politics, as a role of “significant” influence — This is the salt and light view. As stated above, it is the heart that must be changed if the nation is to change. But, we should remember that an unbeliever’s heart can begin to be changed by changing their minds so that their moral convictions are challenged and align more closely with God’s morals standards in the Bible. If there are no moral rights and wrongs in a nation, then they will not begin to see their need of the gospel. And a non-believer’s heart and mind is more likely to be changed, and realize there are moral absolutes, when the nation’s laws change so that they more fully encourage good conduct and punish wrong conduct. With that being said, the question to ask is, “So who are the best people to influence those in politics?” Who would best help the culture think accurately — from a Biblical and God-honoring perspective — about moral issues such as life, protecting the innocent, LGBTQ+, rioting, BLM, CRT, etc.? I think the obvious answer is us as believers. From both the Old and New Testament, isn’t it God’s people who spoke up and influenced those in political positions? Think about the role, by God’s design, that Joseph, Moses, Nehemiah, Esther, Mordecai, Jeremiah, Daniel, John the Baptist, and Paul played as they had opportunity to influence the governments they were associated with. There is no doubt that they didn’t expect the government they were under to save the world, but they did see they had a role of significant influence in the lives of those in government. Let’s also be clear that “significant influence” does not mean angry, belligerent, intolerant, judgmental, red-faced, and hate-filled influence, but rather winsome, kind, thoughtful, loving, persuasive influence that is suitable to each circumstance, that always protects the other person’s right to disagree, while at the same time is uncompromising about the truthfulness and moral goodness of the teachings of God’s Word. Maybe if we, as believers, began to look at the political scene from a Biblical perspective, and allow God’s Word to govern our conversations, attitudes, and actions, we might see God’s people reflect where our true hope and confidence is placed. Just maybe we would see believers filled with true confidence, contentment, and joy regardless of what is going on with the political scene!

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9 FAITH IN CHRIST A place where new life springs forth out of despair, failure and death.

A place where God brings physical, emotional and spiritual healing to you.

You Must Be Born Again How do we become the sons and daughters of God? We must have a second birth that is a Spiritual birth! Almighty God wants you and me to be His children. He already knows that we need help and forgiveness. For this to happen, we must confess our sins to Him and ask Him to come into our life and make things right. We have to be born again into the glorious kingdom of God the Father and given new life by the Spirit of the living God. When this happens to us, He gives us a new life in Christ. This is a gift for those who ask, and it is a wonderful happening! “Being born again, not of corruptible seed [from our earthly parents] but of incorruptible, by the Word of God, which lives and abides forever” I Peter 1:23. The Apostle John wrote that when you receive Jesus Christ as Savior, you are given power to become a child of God. “But as many as received Him, to them He gave power to become the sons [and daughters] of God, even to them that believe on His name which were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God”. John 1:12-13. This is a description of the spiritual New Birth that brings with it, precious gifts and a wonderful relationship all through your life with your Father God. The Lord Jesus Christ spoke with a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews, who came to Him by night, asking questions and admitting that no one could do miracles as He did except God be with Him. “Jesus answered and said unto Him, Verily, verily I say unto you, Except a man be born again he cannot see the Kingdom of God. Nicodemus said unto Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily I say unto you, Except a man be born of water AND of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I say unto you, you must be born again. The wind blows where it listith, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell when it comes, and where it goes: so is everyone that is born of the Spirit. To be “born of the Spirit” is to be “BORN AGAIN”. This is the best day of anyone’s life! To be Born Again by the Spirit of God, and to have all your sins forgiven and to have yourself washed clean in the blood of the Lamb of God, who is the Lord Jesus Christ. All you can say is “Thank You Jesus, Thank You Jesus!” When that awful weight of the world and the weight of our unconfessed sins are completely off of you, there is nothing that ever can compare with this! Our Father God planned things for you and me, and we do not have to hide in the bushes like Adam and Eve did in the garden.

“As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the Word that you may grow thereby” I Peter 2:2 “Whosoever is born of God does not commit sin; for His seed remains in him [or her] and they cannot sin because they are born of God”. I John 3:9 “Beloved let us love one another; for love is of God; and everyone that loves is born of God and knows God”. I John 4:7 “Whosoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loves Him that begat loves Him also that is begotton (brought forth to birth) of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments” I John 5:1-2 “We know that whosoever is born of God sins not; but he that is begotten of God keeps himself and that wicked one touches him not”. I John 5:18. “Verily I say unto you, except you be converted and become as little children, you shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven”. Matthew 18:3 “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but under grace”. Romans 6:14 “My brethren, you also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ: that you should be married to another who is raised from the dead...But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter”. Romans 7:4-6 “Beloved, now are we the sons of God [because we are born again by His Spirit], and it does not yet appear what we shall be: But, we know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him: For we shall see Him as He is. And every man that has this hope in Him, purifieth himself even as He is pure”. I John 3:2-3 Call or write River Garden for ministry, prayer & information God Bless you. RIVER GARDEN P.O. Box 112, Lakemont, GA 30552 706.490.3063 • 706.782.5435

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Life is a Blessing He is Always There! by Tracy McCoy

God is a 24/7 God, not a Sunday morning God, not an “only there in a tragedy” God. He wants to be in every part of your life. He loves you more than you can fathom because you are His creation, His child. Don’t divide your life into secular and sacred; it is all sacred when God is in it. He wants to be with you at the grocery store and in the quiet place where you pray. God wants to be involved in everything that concerns you and He wants you to quit shutting Him out because you think He only cares about the major disasters and very religious things. He is your Heavenly Father and you have no idea how exciting your relationship with Him can be when you realize that He wants to be part of everything in your life. I am in no way suggesting that you treat your relationship with God casually, He is Holy but He sees you grocery shop. He watches your kids play ball, He puts people in your path at the yoga class that He wants you to reach out to and your time is so divided between “church” and “not church” that you don’t realize He is even there. Share your life with the one who knows every hair on your head and every thought that crosses your mind. Be strong in Him and rest in the intimate relationship you have with Him. When things go wrong, talk to God instead of posting it to your 800 friends on Facebook. Instead of picking up the phone go to the throne! If you are drawing your strength from your Heavenly Father you will be equipped for what comes against you and there will be wickedness that comes up. When you spend time with God you will take on His countenance, you will SHINE with the light of the Savior and the devil will not know what to do with you. He cannot come up against Christ.

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How amazing is it that this powerful God that you and I serve is so Holy and so awesome yet He loves us so much that He comes to you and meets you in your darkest hour, in your greatest joy and your biggest challenges. He wants to be with you when you go for the interview, take the test, have that baby, not just when you need him. There is no where that you go that He won’t go with you. If you are discouraged go to God. Are you angry? Go to God! But tell Him when you are happy, praise Him in all things! Yet, how many of us walk around with big frowns on our faces; we’ve frowned so much we have lines on our forehead! If you know Christ and have accepted Him as Savior of your life you have every reason to walk around with the biggest, ear to ear grin showing every tooth in your head. There is nothing too big for God and nothing that is bigger than the gift He has given you. Rejoice in the Lord and spend every minute assured He is with you. Tell Him today how sorry you are that you drag yourself through life consumed with worry and grief. Let the Holy Spirit that lives within you sing and shine brighter than it ever has. No wonder so many who don’t know God look at us, His followers, and when they see big old grouchy, grumbling people, they certainly don’t want what we have. Why would they? Let God bless your life, not with riches and earthly treasures but with goodness and mercy and this overpowering grace that is sufficient! If you are ready to change your life…tell God. If you desire to know God ask Jesus! Believe that He is who He said He is and tell Him what a mess your life is in. Ask His forgiveness where you have gone wrong and ask Him to take your life and make it what He wants it to be... I guarantee it’s better than anything you can even imagine. Let your life be a blessing!

His Last Days Returns Outdoor Musical Drama

Sat. & Sun., Sept. 4th & 5th at 7:00pm in Tallulah Falls, Georgia You don’t always know how much something means to you until it’s no longer there. That is the experience of all of the many volunteers who work together to create HIS LAST DAYS in Tallulah Falls, Georgia each year. The family of drama volunteers hadn’t missed a year presenting the faith story of Jesus’ last days until 2020. There is much joy and excitement to be back in 2021. Although we have come together since 1984 to share the story at the heart of the Gospel, this year is a new beginning. We invite folks to come celebrate with us - and even to consider being in the drama for the first hand experience. His Last Days is a one-of-a-kind happening for both audience and cast. The drama is in a large outdoor setting around a mountain lake on the property of Tallulah Falls School. The choir and narrator provide the story line for a large cast to create the Biblical scenes. There are several ways to find a whole lot more information about His Last Days: FaceBook Group His Last Days Passion Drama, visit the website, call 706-476-4939.

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All The “Feels” of August By Liz Alley

August, the month of the year that, at least for me, is the in betwixt and in between time. It’s hot as blazes with its Dog Days and according to Wikipedia, is associated with lethargy, fever, mad dogs, heat, and sudden thunderstorms. Indeed, it is the shutting down of summer amongst the staggering heat that makes everyone a little mad, including the dogs. In the words of Sylvia Plath, “it’s the odd uneven time.” In the Augusts of my youth, it was the time we prepared to go back to school. I will never forget the August that I was to start first grade. My mother took me and my siblings to Harper’s Five and Dime, formerly located in the current Claws and Paws pet supply building in Clayton. There we bought all manner of school supplies. There was no supply list to go by (thank the Lord) and mother let us pick out pretty much whatever we wanted. I was beyond excited to be included for the first time and I picked out a three ring Blue Horse notebook and a packet of 300 sheets of paper. Also, I chose a box of 50 yellow pencils, a pencil pouch, a pencil sharpener and a Scooby Doo lunch box. Little did I know I was in the beginning stages of an addiction to paper, books, journals, pencils, pens and the like. I was too young to understand why I was enamored with the smell of a sharpened pencil; I can’t say as I understand it now either but I’ve learned to embrace it. I took my supplies home and loaded my Blue Horse notebook up with the 300 sheets of paper and fifty sharpened pencils in my zippered pouch. Chip, Lisa, David and Lynn, my brothers and sisters, began to laugh, my notebook was bigger than I was. Mama gently told me I didn’t need to take all that paper to school and it would be hard for me to carry around (no silly book bags back then) but I would not be moved, me and all my paper and pencils were headed to Lakemont Elementary together. First grade was a delight for me. My teacher was Miss Lassie McCall and I loved her from

the very first day. She taught her class how to count to 100 that year by giving each of us a dime as a reward. She read the bible to us, taught us the Pledge of Allegiance, and she never said one word about the little girl who insisted on carrying her huge Blue Horse notebook everywhere, even to the lunch room. One day, on the way back from lunch, I accidentally dropped my notebook and all 300 sheets of paper fell to the floor. Lyman Deal, the janitor for the school and the nicest man on earth, sat me on a five-gallon bucket in his janitor closet while he picked up all my papers and put them neatly back into my notebook. I’m one of those people who thinks it’s a shame schools aren’t teaching cursive writing anymore. I can remember practicing my loopy letters in my notebook, my hand bearing down so hard I have a permanent blister on my finger from the wrong way I hold my pen. This was a habit Miss. Lassie tried time and again to correct to no avail. I recently took a package to the UPS store for shipping. I had the label already addressed but had to take it off and print it, the young man at the counter didn’t know how to read cursive. I left the store longing for the simple days of my youth and the conviction that the world needs a few more Miss Lassies, notebook paper and finely sharpened pencils. So August, bring it on and bring all the “feels” with you when you come! Be the Sunday of summer and the beginning of something new. Be a bouquet of sharpened pencils and a thunderstorm or two. Be the slowing of time and the longest of days. Be the indulgence of stillness because we’re too hot to move. Be the best night sky for shooting stars. Be the bittersweet of sunrises that come a little later and be our conflicting emotions about the last days of summer. Be the nudge out of our lazy days and into routine. Be the burn and glare that gives way to the cool and cozy. Be the smell of freshly cut grass and the thoughts of Friday night football. Be the memory of Blue Horse notebooks and summer’s last who-rah. Come August, in a blaze of glory and then go, so we can miss you once again.

Liz Alley was born and raised in Rabun County in the city of Tiger. She loves to write. She is an interior designer specializing in repurposing the broken, tarnished, chipped, faded, worn and weathered into pieces that are precious again. She is the mother of two daughters and has two grandchildren. She divides her time between her home in Newnan and Rabun County.

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9 JUST THINKING By The Way Floyd Collins Made History the Hard Way By Emory Jones I recently crossed “visit Kentucky’s Mammoth Cave” off my bucket list. Now, don’t get me wrong—I’m no spelunker; I don’t care what you’ve heard. No, I wanted to visit Mammoth Cave National Park to see the cave poor ole Floyd Collins got stuck inside. If you don’t remember Floyd Collins, that’s understandable. This all happened back in 1925. Unlike me, Floyd loved spelunking. In fact, he’d already discovered nearby Crystal Cave, and his family had turned that place into an almost profitable tourist attraction. However, Crystal Cave was too far back in the woods to attract as many visitors as some of the other dozen or so commercial caves nearer the highway. Trying to find a closer entrance, Floyd was crawling around in Sand Cave on a cold January day when his foot got caught between a rock and a hard place.

When Floyd didn’t come home that night, his brothers and others started looking for him. Once they found his jacket near the entrance to Sand Cave, they knew where he’d gone. One man even elbowed his way inside far enough to talk to Floyd and learn that his leg was trapped by a 25-pound rock he couldn’t reach to move. Over the next 18 days, everybody tried everything to get Floyd out. At first, there was enough room to drop food and water to him and even a light bulb for a bit of warmth. But, several days in, a rockslide between Floyd and the cave’s entrance stopped any further communication. After that, they concentrated on sinking a new shaft. Before that slide happened, a wiry 117-pound cub reporter named William “Skeets” Miller showed up. Miller was small, so he could squeeze close enough to Floyd to interview him, which he did several times. Miller prayed with him, too. His first-person accounts of the rescue attempt won him a Pulitzer Prize. Miller’s reports from the cave were soon picked up by the wire services. Newly minted broadcast radio played an even bigger role in spreading the story. The rescue effort grabbed the entire nation’s attention. They say 60,000 people showed up—so many they had to build a barbwire fence to keep folks back. The new shaft reached Floyd too late, and the family buried him on their property near Crystal Cave. In the ensuing years, books were written, ballads sung, movies made, and a museum built. Somebody even produced an off-Broadway musical about the affair. When the Collins family sold Crystal Cave in 1927, the new owners dug up Floyd’s famous body. They displayed it under glass in a coffin. (I’m not making this up.) Visitors had to pay a little extra to raise the lid, but I understand most of them did. An undertaker dropped by once a month to keep things looking sharp. Years later, souvenir hunters stole the body. When someone (hopefully not a family member) found it in a nearby field a few days later, Floyd’s left leg was missing. After that, they chained his casket to the wall. It wasn’t until after the National Park Service took over Crystal Cave that Floyd, in 1989, got a proper burial in the Mammoth Cave Baptist Church cemetery. Thank goodness. But I’m glad I finally got to pay my respects to Floyd Collins. Lord knows, he deserves it.

Emory Jones grew up in Northeast Georgia’s White County. After a stint in the Air Force, he joined Gold Kist as publications manager. He was the Southeastern editor for Farm Journal Magazine and executive vice president at Freebarin & Company, an Atlanta-based advertising agency. He has written seven books. Emory is known for his humor, love of history and all things Southern. He and his wife, Judy, live on Yonah Mountain near Cleveland, Georgia.

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Lovin’ The Journey

The Adventure of Mountains and Marriage By Mark Holloway

I was no choir boy. As the middle child, I was the peacemaker yet the adventurermischief maker. On at least three occasions, my shenanigans could have brought down my dad’s decorated and fascinating military career. At thirteen, a buddy and I went streaking at midnight across streets. We eventually dove into thick bushes attempting to evade military police and their German shepherds. The bushes belonged to the post commander at Ft. Benning. Streaking intentionally in front of a military police jeep seemed like the perfect plan...until it wasn’t. I fought the law and the law dogs won. In Hawaii at fifteen and Germany at sixteen there were other youthful mental lapses whose accounts I’ll be glad to entertain you with should you ask. Not long after graduating from Frankfurt American High School, West Germany, dad retired to Ft. Myers, Florida. The Holy Spirit kindly and soberly escorted me into the the presence of the Almighty and intimately introduced me to the Rescuer of my soul. Jesus not only changed me, he took me to new levels of adventure and thrills...without violating any more military laws. I was jetting through community college bound for the University of Florida.

wandered over to join me and my two running buddies. She told us she didn’t have a story which included the Savior. She asked us to pray with her. That night was special and her life changed forever. So did mine. Four months later I was beyond smitten by this gorgeous future cosmetologist. By the time my senior year at Florida unfolded, I was a married man. Last month we celebrated our 40th by hiking and playing along Maine’s coastline, enjoying lighthouses, exploring Acadia National Park, and summiting Mt. Katahdin. I reckon forty years is a long, long time. But we haven’t tapped out on adventure yet. The more we find, the more there seems to be waiting to be found. See you on the trail.

This is the part of the story when Carol enters the stage of my heart. She was the black sheep of her family. Her hard-partying scuba instructor / contractor dad and German mom would meet the Redeemer too and Carol wanted no part of their new lives nor the college Bible study her older sister repeatedly invited her to. Until... She relented, telling Sissy, “If you promise to never again invite me to that college group, I’ll go just one time. Our leader encouraged us to form small groups of three or four to share our stories of meeting Jesus. Carol

Mark and Carol Holloway own and are passionate about delivering excellent care to the homes and property of their clients. They are outdoor adventurers and love the thrills of rock climbing and hikes to waterfalls and exploring all of God’s creation. Mark can be reached by calling 706-490-7060.

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“Big Things Are Happening in Lakemont, Georgia” “Big things are happening in Lakemont, Georgia”, Kelly Grimsley said to me the first time I walked into Ladybug Landing, and she is correct. If you have yet to meet Kelly and shop at Ladybug Landing, what are you waiting for? Kelly is a bundle of happiness and it is contagious. I want to go see her every day. The gifts, clothing and home décor she has at Ladybug Landing is a direct reflection of her personality. You’ll want it all! Virginia McClure, owner of Lakemont Gallery has remodeled and moved her shop just next door. It is absolutely beautiful and showcases her incredible fine art oil paintings and the art of other local artists. You’ll find handcrafted woodwork, pottery and fine art. If you are looking for that one of a kind piece for your home, make sure you visit Lakemont Gallery. If you are looking to get into shape call Sandy at Lakemont Cycle and take a class with her. She has indoor cycling unique to the area. She has also moved right up the street as well. Cycling is an excellent way to improve your overall health and well being. So as you can see, big things are happening in Lakemont, Georgia. Make a point to visit, you’ll be so glad you did.

Lakemont, Georgia

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Adventure Out

Chattooga River Trail – Licklog Falls and the Chattooga River By Peter McIntosh On this adventure we’re hiking the Chattooga River trail from the Russell Bridge on SC Highway 28 to Licklog Falls at the Chattooga River. This is a fairly long hike, a little less than four miles each way, but the well maintained trail is moderate to easy, leaning more towards easy. And you might want to bring a wildflower book because there is a wide range of interesting wildflowers. From the trailhead at the Ridley Fields parking area, walk around the gate and you’ll see the footpath ascending gently up and away from the river floodplain on your left. (There’s an old faded marker reading “Foothills Trail Jct. – 3.7 miles” and Licklog Falls is 2/10 mile down from the junction of these two footpaths.) After walking about ten minutes, you’ll come to a cove and the first of many small water crossings. These moist coves are especially good wildflower spots. And remember to look up as well, there are some impressive stands of Birch Trees along this part of the trail and it’s also a nice area for bird watching.

Peter McIntosh is an accomplished professional photographer. His photography is displayed in collections across the country. His passion for nature and the outdoors is what fuels his column. His work is available as fine art prints. Peter offers one on one and small group instruction on camera operation and photography. To see more of Peter’s photos, or if you have a question or comment, visit Peter’s

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Slowly the trail climbs a bit higher on the ridge and bends around following the river far below. At times the trail is narrow and sometimes it’s wide, following an old roadbed. After about 2.5 miles the trail descends and rejoins the river. There’s a nice camping spot here if you’re thinking about backpacking. A little further on, there’s a footbridge crossing Ira Branch and there’s a trail marker here reading “Foothills Trail 1.1 miles. The pathway follows along the river some ways more and then ascends. When you reach the intersection of the Chattooga River Trail and the Foothills Trail, turn left and descend along Licklog Creek to the river. There are a pair of smaller cascades on the creek before you get to the Chattooga so take your time and enjoy these as well. Licklog Falls pours directly into the Chattooga River and there’s a small but nice sandy beach here to relax, have a picnic and maybe cool your tired feet in the water. Happy hiking! P.S. There is a river cane restoration project on the flood plain just beyond the gate. You can read about it at the information board in the parking area. This project is spearheaded by the Chattooga Conservancy. These are good folks, worthy of your support. Learn more at Getting there: From Warwoman Road in Clayton, go 16 miles until Warwoman dead ends into Hwy 28. Turn right and go just over 2 miles to the Russell Bridge. Continue a little further to the Ridley Fields parking area on the left. Licklog Falls can also be accessed from a trailhead at the end of Nicholson Ford Road off of Village Creek Road about 3 miles south of the Russell bridge.

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9 LIVE HEALTHY & BE WELL Psoriatic Disease – What A Patient Has Learned By Tracy McCoy

At first I didn’t see the tiny red spots that came up on my elbows in 1985. I mean who looks at their elbows that closely? When I did find them, because they were itchy, I wasn’t sure what in the world they were. I just knew more spots seemed to appear every day. A trip to the Doctor was in order and I was given some cream to put on them and referred to a Dermatologist. A couple weeks later, I sat in the office of Anderson Skin and Cancer Clinic in Anderson, South Carolina. Dr. Smith, an older gentleman, entered the room. He took one look at my elbows and told me that I had a classic case of plaque psoriasis. I was not at all familiar with the skin condition that I now feel qualified to write about even though I am not a physician. I am writing from knowledge I have gained in the 35 years since that day. August is Psoriasis Awareness month, so I thought I’d share some information about a disease that has taken root in my family and is present in my life daily. After my visit with Dr. Smith in 1986 I researched (no Google back then) the disease. I found out later that I had other family members with Psoriasis on BOTH sides. A double whammy! My elbows are not the only place affected by Psoriasis today. I would estimate that 40% of my skin’s surface is affected and now my joints are affected with psoriatic arthritis. PsA as it is called in the medical community is the second component of Psoriatic Disease, the first being skin involvement. So I will answer, with the help of the National Psoriasis Foundation, some questions about what is now referred to as Psoriatic Disease. I hope this might shed some light on a very misunderstood autoimmune disease. Always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatments. Q. What is Psoriasis? A. Psoriasis is a skin condition that affects an estimated 3% of the population or 7.5 million US adults, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation. It is an immune-mediated disease that causes inflammation in the body. The visible signs of the inflammation manifest themselves as plaques and scales on the skin. The overreaction of the immune system to an unidentified trigger speeds up skin cell growth. The normal process of a skin cell from growth to shedding is typically a month. This is a process you might not even notice. A person with Psoriasis sees the process happen every 3-5 days. Instead of shedding, the skin cells pile up on the skin. Blood circulation is increased to these areas to nourish the abundant skin cells, causing an underlying redness. Many people find that their skin itches, burns and stings. Others notice little irritation. Psoriasis is not contagious. Q. What causes Psoriatic Disease? A. Scientists don’t know the exact cause. They have determined that genetics and the immune system play key roles. It is a complex disease

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and things like trauma, infections and stress cause it to flare up or worsen. Triggers can be found in our diets, certain skincare products, the seasons, viruses and skin injury. Stress is a huge trigger for me and may explain why I’ve never had my skin completely clear. I have been practicing relaxation techniques and stress management. The tricky part is that what triggers psoriasis can be different from person to person. The Koebner phenomenon states that injury or harm to the skin such as sunburns, big bites, scratches and even tattoos can trigger a flare. Among the triggers mentioned add tobacco and alcohol use. Q. What types of Psoriasis exist and how are they treated? A. Psoriasis can appear on any location of the body. Sometimes it only affects the scalp or is more widespread on your extremities or just on your trunk or unfortunately it can manifest on all of these parts at the same time. It can affect your face, hands, feet and nails, skin folds and even your private parts. The five types of Psoriasis are as follows: Plaque Psoriasis – This is the most common type, affecting as many as 80% of those with the disease. Plaques are raised, red patches of inflamed, itchy and often painful skin with silvery scales. Any part of the body can be affected, but routinely you’ll see this type on elbows, knees, scalp, around the belly button and on the lower back. Plaque psoriasis is treated with topical creams and ointments that usually include cortisone, phototherapy, oral medications (some cancer drugs), and newer biologics. All of these treatments come with their own set of side effects. Your Physician will evaluate risk vs benefit and come up with a plan for you based on your symptoms and health history. Guttate Psoriasis – Roughly 8% of people living with psoriasis will be affected by guttate psoriasis. Notorious for following a strep infection, this form appears as tiny white, pus filled bumps that can be painful. Its effects are typically widespread and it is difficult to clear. Treatments are the same for guttate as for plaque psoriasis. Pustular Psoriasis – This form includes pustules like guttate but may be surrounded by inflamed or reddened skin. It affects about 3% of people living psoriasis. There are different types of pustular psoriasis. Von Zumbusch psoriasis affects a large area of the body. It can develop suddenly and progress quickly. It often is accompanied with fever, chills, severe itching, change in heart rate, fatigue and muscle weakness. You should go to the doctor immediately if you suspect you have this form of psoriasis. Palmoplantar psoriasis is when it affects the palms of your hands and soles of your feet. Acropustulosis is when it affects only the tips of fingers and/or toes. This is a very rare type. Inverse Psoriasis – The inflamed deep-red skin of inverse psoriasis is smooth, not scaly. It affects skin folds like underarms, under breasts, in the private areas and between the buttocks. It can cause severe

itching and pain and is worsened by sweating. Your doctor may treat with topicals or systemic medications or a combination. Keeping skin folds dry by way of powders and protective creams is half the battle. Erythrodermic Psoriasis – This type is very rare, affecting only 2% of people living with psoriasis. This can cause intense redness and shedding of skin in large sheets. It often affects the whole body and can be life-threatening. It can cause severe pain and itching as well as changes in heart rate and temperature. It can cause dehydration and changes in the nails such as pitting or lifting. It is critical that you see your doctor if you suspect an erythrodermic flare. Q. What is living with psoriasis like? A. As it is with any chronic condition, psoriasis affects more than your physical health. It can cause issues with your relationships, emotional health, and how you handle stress. From what clothing you wear to the products you can or can’t use on your skin, psoriasis interrupts your life. It is embarrassing and uncomfortable. I have tried every “home remedy” ever shared with me. I’ve applied creams and wrapped the areas in plastic wrap. I have rubbed banana peels on the plaques, I have used essential oils, special lotions marketed to psoriasis sufferers and carried home gallons of salt water from the ocean. I have done just about everything you can think of from super weird things (plastic wrap) to using prescription creams. I have had cortisone injections put into the plaques, which worked well in the short term but actually caused a rebound effect. I have taken every kind of vitamin known to man and some that weren’t (jk). I find some relief in sunshine or tanning but you must be careful not to get burned. Dove® soap and Curel® lotion have been good for my skin. I use topical cortisone creams and a vitamin D derivative cream that helps, both prescribed to me by my dermatologist (Current Dermatology). I have considered biologics which are said to show promise, but I have yet to take that route. I honestly forget sometimes that the plaques are there until I see someone glancing at them or someone asks about it. I am never offended, psoriasis is a skin disease that I will live with for the rest of my life. Quiet meditation, prayer, exercise and deep breathing have proven to help with stress. People with Psoriatic disease are more likely to suffer with depression. Seeking treatment for that is important as well.

Q. What is Psoriatic Arthritis and does everyone with psoriasis get that too? A. Up to 30% of people with psoriasis will get PsA. The two conditions combine to be psoriatic disease. Psoriatic arthritis is a chronic, inflammatory disease of the joints and where tendons and ligaments connect to bone. It can start at any age and even affect children. Typically it starts about a decade after psoriasis is diagnosed. You can have one without the other or both together which is the case for me. While there is no cure for PsA, the hope is that treatments can help stop disease progression, lessen the pain, protect joints and preserve range of motion. The earlier the better is the thought process for this debilitating type of arthritis. Left untreated, severe joint damage can occur in the later stages of the disease. It can develop slowly or come on quickly and be severe. Along with the pain and stiffness comes fatigue, nail changes that can result in loss of nails, eye redness and pain (uveitis). There is no diagnostic test for PsA. Your doctor will observe your condition and by process of elimination he/she will make a diagnosis. Typically it is best to see a Rheumatologist to manage PsA. Q. What does the future hold for Psoriatic disease? A. Research is being done to find effective treatment options for psoriasis and PsA. The National Psoriasis Foundation (www.psoriasis. org) offers a more in depth (believe it or not) look at the conditions, treatments, life hacks and alternative treatments that may improve one’s quality of life. Exercise, sunshine, clean eating and enjoying life to the best of your ability are key to managing this chronic condition. Good quality medical care is as important or more so. So if you think you are suffering with either condition or both, talk to your doctor. Living with it is definitely doable and most people can manage well. Hopefully we will see improved treatments coming down the pipe with fewer side effects. Cindy Lauper, Phil Mickleson and I are living proof that there is a good future for patients battling psoriasis and PsA. Keep your chin up, breathe deep, pray hard and put your best foot forward.

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Mental Health

What are the Benefits of Christian Counseling? By Chaplain Suzanne Lynne Scott Speak Comfort Counseling at Georgia Mountain Psychological Associates, Inc. The unpredictable changes we are experiencing today are overwhelming. Where can we turn when life is full of uncertainties and the familiar touchstones that have steadied us throughout our lives are rapidly disappearing? All counseling care offers a safe harbor in times of stress, discouragement, and suffering, and healing can be experienced through many types of therapy. What, then, are the benefits of participating in Christian Counseling? Like all good counselors, we Christian counselors base our therapeutic approach on a sincere desire to express empathy and compassion for our clients, along with expertise. Taking this a step further, Christian counselors understand that every person has been made in the image of God and carries within them the spark of divinity. We are keenly aware that no human being in this world is perfect, that we too have suffered and made mistakes, and that we owe our counselees the same grace, forgiveness, and encouragement that we cherish. Our job is not to judge, but to offer comfort in service to the needs of others. This perspective allows us to work with people from all walks of life from what psychologist Carl Rogers termed “unconditional positive regard” - that every person seeking help should always be met in the spirit of unconditional love and respect. Although Dr. Rogers may not have derived his theory of Client Centered Therapy from the pages of scripture, his method echoes the writings of the apostle Paul in Philippians 2:3-4, “Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too” (NIV). This is a fundamental precept of Christian Counseling and is a wonderful principle when applied to life in general. As is true for many twelve-step and recovery programs, Christian counselors are mindful that all healing is derived from the beneficial workings of a higher power, and that the love of God is available for the aid of all people. Christian counselors are called to study the art and science of counseling to prepare to meet the needs of our clients, and at the same time we humble ourselves to depend on the unfathomable wisdom of God to guide every aspect of our practice. While your Christian counselor will probably not pray with you during session time, you can rest assured that we will be praying for your needs on a regular basis.

Christian Counseling addresses the whole person, incorporating therapeutic tools for the body, mind, emotions, and spirit into counseling sessions. We are skilled at assisting clients suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress, anxiety, depression, grief, loss, overcoming addiction, recovering from abuse, and the same personal and interpersonal topics addressed by other counselors. We work with individuals, couples, and families, and are uniquely equipped to provide formal spiritual direction and share in pastoral care for those clients who request it. There are two misperceptions that keep people from seeking Christian Counseling. On one hand, many believe that one must be a Christian to participate in Christian Counseling, and on the other hand, many Christians believe that therapeutic counseling is contradictory to their faith. Neither is true, and sadly, they often prevent people in need of support from partaking in a therapy that offers hope and comfort to everyone, regardless of their beliefs. In fact, St. Paul described God as the God of all comfort, who comforts us so that we may comfort others (1 Corinthians 1:3-4), and he encouraged the Church to bear with each other’s joys and burdens, instructing us to rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn (Romans 12:15). A faithful Christian counselor will neither condemn nor reject a fellow sufferer but will be willing to speak the truth in love and ease anguish with compassion. Christian counselors may use methods grounded in Dialectical Behavior Therapy, which help balance reason and emotion; or we may draw from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, helping counselees accept what cannot be changed and discover ways to let go of destructive habits; or we may suggest Cognitive Behavior Therapy, to help clients recognize and transform limiting beliefs and behaviors. Regardless of the technical methods used in sessions, Christian counselors are alert to each client’s individual potential for minimizing harmful habits, improving interpersonal relationships, and setting and accomplishing goals to achieve insight, balance, and growth. Over several sessions, counselor and counselee will develop a rapport, a personal relationship based on trust and mutual respect, that deepens with time. This establishes a safe and confidential environment within which counselees can freely express their struggles and celebrate their triumphs. Meanwhile, your Christian counselor will be prayerfully seeking God’s blessing for your protection and success as we undertake the healing journey together.

Suzanne Scott is an ordained chaplain, certified by the International Fellowship of Chaplains. She is the owner and creator of Speak Comfort, an ad-free website ministering to Christian women in over fifty countries, including China, Turkey, Iran, and Russia. Suzanne is not a licensed counselor and her practice falls under the domain of chaplain services. She is currently completing an undergraduate degree in psychology with plans of pursuing graduate coursework and licensure in the counseling field.

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Busting the Myths of Parasites By Dr. Brad Speed Ah parasites, a subject which worms its way into our hearts and minds...(you see what I did there?) The little understood, and even less liked topic that is nevertheless so incredibly important to the health of our pets. In my 10 years of practice, I have found that parasites are one of the least understood problems our pets face. To be quite frank, a lot of that problem has to do with perception. Parasites are icky, intimidating, and gross. Most people would rather pretend they do not exist. The problem occurs when we act like they don’t exist, and then we neglect to properly protect our pets. Human perception is by far the core problem with pets and parasites. Parasites are ADAPTED to hunt down and infest your pets. That is their job, and they do it very well. Every parasite we will discuss in this article is a specialist at getting to your pet, and my main goal in this article is to convince you that they are going to succeed. That is why prevention is so incredibly important. In the spirit of science and promotion of animal health, let’s bust up some common myths about parasites: My pet doesn’t need flea/tick prevention because they are always in the house. FALSE. A lot of people like this one because it seems logical, but remember, fleas especially are ADAPTED to finding dogs and cats. A flea can crawl right under a door or through a cracked window. We see these pets ALL the time, mostly indoor cats. Owners are always shocked when we show them the fleas. Remember, a door crack is twelve feet high for a flea. My pet only goes out in the backyard. It’s fenced in. They are not at risk for parasites. FALSE. Let’s be honest, this is one where people are really stretching. Parasite eggs persist for months in the environment, and they live in grass. All a dog or cat has to do is sniff the right area in the yard to be exposed to intestinal parasites like hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms. The eggs of these worms can be carried by rainwater right under your wooden fence and right into contact with Fluffy. And what pet doesn’t go SOMEWHERE else every once in a while? My dog doesn’t need heartworm prevention because we don’t have mosquitoes. FALSE. Come on now...can all of you out there in these wonderful North Georgia mountains honestly say you’ve never seen a mosquito fly into the house? A

mosquito can be carried in on a human or pet just as easily as they can fly through an open door. Heartworms are transmitted to dogs and cats by mosquito bite, and here in Rabun County, there is no such thing as mosquito-free. Heartworm/Flea/Tick prevention is more dangerous for my pet than it’s worth. FALSE. This is the statement that bothers me the most. I can’t promise that every product is safe for every pet. There are absolutely pets out there that have problems related to individual products. You can find adverse reaction reports on any product. However, when we make blanket statements like this, we lean way too far to one side of the argument. Everything we do in Veterinary Medicine is risk versus benefit. If you choose not to give your dogs and cats prevention because the prevention is dangerous, you are then opening up your pet to a myriad of severe, potentially life threatening problems. The risk of your pet being exposed to these parasites is far greater than their risk of having a problem with the preventative. One of the saddest times for me in the clinic is when I diagnose a dog with heartworms. Heartworms are expensive and dangerous to treat, and if left untreated, they can lead to congestive heart failure, which is progressively fatal. These cases are even sadder when the owner admits that they stopped giving prevention 6 months ago, or didn’t believe in prevention. Those choices have now put the pet in a situation where it is in far more danger than anyone wanted to deal with. These cases happen regularly, and owners feel so guilty knowing that this trouble was preventable. Stop believing the myths of parasites. Indoor pets are not immune to fleas and ticks. Any pet that touches the ground is exposed to intestinal parasites. Mosquitoes that carry heartworms are endemic in the Southeast. Most of all, realize that swearing off prevention altogether is a decision that often costs the health of your pet. We don’t make these recommendations for the fun of it. If you have concerns about particular preventions, open a dialogue with your Vet about your pet’s specific needs. You can also get plenty of good tips and maybe even a product or two from the awesome staff up at Clayton Claws & Paws!

Brad is an associate Veterinarian at Rabun Animal Hospital. He graduated Rabun County High School in 2002, earned his bachelor degree in Animal and Dairy Science (2005) and then his DVM in Veterinary Medicine, both at the University of Georgia (2010). He lives in Clayton with his wife, daughter, son, and many 2, 3, and 4 legged animals.

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Dr. Wilbanks



Bright Burrell, a Confederate veteran, and his wife and daughter gather around their fireplace, circa 1890

A Culinary Tour of 19th Century Rabun County Three Sisters, Hogs Heads and Ash Cakes By Dick Cinquina

When Rabun County was founded in 1819, the local supermarket was the family farm. People ate the vegetables they grew, the animals they raised, the game they hunted and the fish they caught. Surviving in the isolated mountains of northeast Georgia was no easy task. Pork, squirrel and venison were favorite meats. Vegetables were eaten fresh, canned and preserved. Corn, the most important crop, was prepared in a multitude of ways. It was made into bread; it was fried and creamed; it was roasted on the cob; and it was served as grits and johnny cakes. The Cherokee, upon whose land Rabun County was established, were an agrarian people. A considerable portion of their diet was based upon the Three Sisters: corn, beans and squash. The Three Sisters found their way into the kitchens of the early white settlers. Scots-Irish immigrants, the predominant stock of northeast Georgia, transitioned from their European diet based on dairy, potatoes and barley to one based on the Three Sisters and, most importantly, pork. Dick Cinquina holds graduate degrees in history and journalism, making his work for the Rabun County Historical Society a natural fit for his interests. He is the retired president of Equity Market Partners, a national financial consulting firm he founded in 1981. In addition to writing monthly articles for the Georgia Mountain Laurel, Dick helped produce the Society’s new web site and is involved with the renovation of the group’s museum. After vacationing in this area for many years, he and his wife Anne moved to Rabun County in 2018 form Amelia Island, Florida.

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Eating the Entire Hog Hogs were the primary source of meat for Rabun’s early white settlers. Every subsistence farm raised hogs for good reason; virtually every part of the animal could be consumed, from the snout to the tail and everything in between. Most farmers freeranged their hogs, allowing them to fatten on the “mast” of the forest, including acorns and chestnuts. It was said that chestnuts produced the sweetest meat. Hogs were slaughtered in late November when the weather turned permanently cold, since farmers relied on winter weather to keep the pork from spoiling while it was cured. People also paid close attention to the phases of the moon. Hogs were slaughtered when the moon was “right” or full. Killing hogs during a new moon or when the full moon was waning was avoided, since it was believed the meat would shrink, leaving too much lard and grease. Curing Pork in the Smokehouse Hams, shoulders and pork belly (for bacon) were cured in the farm’s smokehouse. These cuts were thoroughly salted and smoked as soon as possible after slaughtering, preferably while the meat was still warm. When meat was needed during the winter months, the family would cut what was needed from the cured pork, wash off the salt, soak it in fresh water overnight, parboil it the next day and then cook it. Pork definitely was not a fast food.

plate. Fat and lard were rendered and used for cooking and seasoning vegetables. About all that was left of the hog was the squeal. Farming by the Zodiac

Flowers was in the first

Farming was done in accordance with the signs of the zodiac. Planting was best done in the signs of Scorpio, Pisces, Taurus and Cancer. Plowing, tilling, and cultivating were governed by Aries. were planted in Libra when the moon quarter.

Corn mistakenly planted in Leo almost certainly would yield small ears. Crops planted in Taurus and Cancer would withstand drought. And above all, nothing should be planted in the heart and head signs, since both were considered death signs. Fireplace Cookery Rabun County’s white settlers cooked their food in the kitchen fireplace, which is infinitely more difficult than on your gas range. Once a fire was started using dry kindling, green wood was laid on, since seasoned wood burns too quickly. Fireplace cooking required a bed of hot coals, and it took about an hour to produce the coals from a new fire. As the hot coals gradually died down, more wood was added to maintain a relatively constant temperature. However, this was an imprecise art at best.

When the weather turned warm in the spring, the cured pork was washed of salt and treated with black pepper and borax to keep out the “skippers,” the larvae skipper flies. Another coating consisted of brown sugar, red pepper and saltpeter. The treated pork was hung in a bag in the smokehouse for future use, although some farmers buried their pork in boxes filled with hickory ash or corn meal.

Built into many fireplaces was a fixed, horizontal iron bar that ran from side to side about three feet above the fireplace floor. Others had a bar that was hinged to one sidewall, enabling the bar to swing in and out. On these bars, cast iron pots and kettles were hung over the fire. If the fire became too hot, or if something only needed to be kept warm, the pot could be slid on the bar to the side of the fire or swung partly out of the fireplace. Meat was broiled by suspending it from the bar. For frying, pans were set directly on the hot coals.

Hogs Head Stew

Ash Cakes

No part of the hog went to waste, including the head. A nineteenth century recipe for hog’s head stew called for 1 ½ hogs heads (eyes removed), two shoulders of venison, four chickens, one peck of onions, one gallon of Irish potatoes, five half gallons of tomatoes, corn, peas and carrots and six large cans of tomato juice. The stew was seasoned with five pounds of salt and Worcestershire sauce and black pepper to taste. This stew was not meant for the Tuesday evening dinner of a small family.

Potatoes, corn, onions and nuts were roasted by burying them in ashes and then placing hot coals on top. Ash cakes were baked by wrapping the dough in cloth, placing it in a cleaned corner of the fireplace and covering the bag with ashes and coals. Fruits and vegetables were dried by the fire for several days to preserve them for winter eating.

Also consumed were the hog jowls (ground with sausage meat or cured), tongues (boiled and sliced), brains (scrambled with eggs), the snout (called the “rooter” and roasted), and the ears (boiled). Moreover, virtually all of the internal organs were eaten, including the heart, lungs, stomach and intestines of “chitlins” fame. The feet or trotters, the tail and skin also found their way onto the dinner

Later in the century, some families started using a technological innovation for cooking: the wood stove. The fire was built in the stove’s firebox, and the cooking surface typically had six “eyes” or round openings covered with iron lids. Since the heat under the lids could not be regulated, pots had to be moved from one lid to another, depending on how much heat was required. The center lids were hottest, the outside lids were the coolest. The oven, located on the right side of the stove, was heated by circulation continued page 80

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from the firebox. Oven temperatures were difficult to regulate, which made baking a challenge. Many wood stoves had two warming boxes about two feet above the cooking surface to keep food warm before serving. In an interview conducted by the Foxfire Museum and Heritage Center, a longtime user of wood stoves discussed their pluses and minuses. “They’re good in the wintertime, because they sure do warm up the kitchen. In the summer, it gets uncomfortable hot in here; ‘course we can go out on the porch every few minutes…Sometimes wind’ll blow down the pipe hard and smoke the house and the soot flies out all over the place and you have to wipe off everything. And you have to clean it out every so often and watch that sparks don’t fall on the floor…But if the electricity goes off, you’re alright if you’ve got wood.”

A farm woman in Wolffork Valley feeding her chickens

Eating what they grew, raised and hunted. Preserving as much food as possible for the winter months. Cooking in fireplaces and wood stoves. Life in the early days Rachel Kilby churning milk to make butter of Rabun County was difficult. Most of the daily activities were focused on survival in the rugged mountains. But boiled hogs heads, minus the eyeballs, were said to be quite tasty.

Learn more about our history by becoming a member of the Rabun County Historical Society. Membership and complete information about the museum are available at You also can visit us on Facebook. Following an extensive renovation and development of new exhibits, our museum at 81 N. Church St. in downtown Clayton will reopen on June 11. The Historical Society building is open from noon to 3 on Saturdays for people interested in researching county and family histories. The Society is a not-forprofit organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, making membership dues and donations tax deductible.

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Franklin and Surrounding Areas of Western North Carolina

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“Charlie Ross Hartley” Adapted from the Foxfire Magazine, Summer/Fall 1975 Original article by Ray McBride, Steve Smith, Annette Reems, Cheryl Stocky Edited by Kami Ahrens Foxfire is well-known for its collection of over 20 historic log structures, carefully dismantled and rebuilt on-site at our Mountain City property. These buildings are excellent examples of Appalachian vernacular architecture and the skills that were needed for a family to thrive in the mountains. Every home and outbuilding was carefully constructed from lumber harvested from their own property. As lumber prices now climb beyond 300% of their normal costs and as the waitlist for home building becomes longer and longer, we look back on how homes used to be built. Enjoy this interview with Charlie Ross Hartley from 1974: “Now all of these old buildings that you’ll find—all these log buildings—was built before my day. I was born in a log house over here and my brother was born there, but I don’t remember anything about living there. Now when it came to raising a house—old folks has told me this—when old folks got ready to build a house (a new man coming into the settlement or a new man got married), they’d pitch in there, get all them logs out, and get all them logs together enough to build the house. Then they would have a log rolling and get that house raised maybe in one day. I’ve talked to fellers who did them, so I guess I’ve got it pretty straight. I’ve heard one man say that he helped make a man a house out of poplar logs, and he said he split them, hewed them out, got every log ready up through the rafters, and then fifty men got in there and they laid that house up in one day. After the logs is split and cut out, there still is a lot of work to do ‘cause you have to notch them. Them notches was cut with an axe, and that was particular work back then. And I want to tell you something that I’ve had a dozen people ask me, I guess. How did them oldtimers get their house level and square? You know there was no 82 - August 2021

levels. How would you get that log level? It’s very simple now. Take a bucket of water and set it on there and stand and look Charlie Ross Hartley at that water with your eye ‘til it got practically the same all around and you had it level. It’ll work just as good as my four-foot level. Now sure enough, that’s the way they did it. There was a great many weight poles used down here in North Carolina. That’s all they had. But those weight poles held boards on. Had board roofs then. We never had no slate [roofs] here. Every row of boards, you had to have a pole. I was a board man myself. My daddy was a board man. The first boards we ever began making was three-foot boards. And at that time, they had old cut nails. My dad and me together decided it would be best to make thirty-inch board, so we cut it to thirty. I’m the last man that was a board

Cabin in process of reconstruction at Foxfire

maker living in Watauga County. My dad learned me, and my dad was one of the best board makers here. I got pretty close to him [in skill], but taking white oak, I never did get as good as he was. It ain’t much fun making boards. But you take white oak or chestnut oak, you can split a board down pretty thin. I got to where I could split a half-inch board—make them all a half-inch thick. My dad was so good he could take that and divide it again. Make two boards out of a half-inch. But that, of course, was just to show you it could be done. You don’t want a quarter-inch board for a roof. That’s entirely too thin. The half-inch board really worked the best of anything you could have. And that thirty-inch long board worked awful good. Later on, they was a few got to making twenty-four inch boards. Now that’s not a bad board. Make them twenty-four inches long and put them on shingle fashion. Board fashion, you know, you lap it six inches. Shingle fashion, you lap twothirds the length of the board. I’ve slept under them old board roofs. I’d just get up in the morning and throw snow off. Clean up the house so you could get breakfast. And chimneys—they was several stick and mud chimneys here. Now that’s a beautiful chimney. Lay your logs up and pack your mud in them. They actually had a fire in them. There was enough mud in there so you could build your fire down there and it went right on. There’s a great many of them, and I don’t know why it can’t be done today. [Later, sawmills began to produce building lumber.] I can take you back to the first old-time mill there ever was around here. The first sawmill ever put in our county was what we

Students split boards at Foxfire called a sash saw. Went up and down. Now you’ve seen bandsaws. A bandsaw goes over a pulley and comes down around another pulley and cuts always going down. A sash saw goes up and cuts as it goes back down, but it goes up and down straight. And now then they had an overshot wheel. There was nothing but the overshot wheel in it for power. They wasted a good bit of timber at those mills, but timber was millions and millions of feet. What did they care? Go out in the mountains and cut a poplar down to make something out of. If it didn’t suit them, go up and cut another and throw the other out. When the modern mills come out, they put a modern mill right by the side of that [old] one. That sash saw was powered with water though. The water came down in the flume and poured into the buckets on the overshot wheel. It was geared up with wooden cogs to pull your logs backwards and forwards. You didn’t pull that. I don’t believe they cut a log over twelve feet long on them, but that’s the way it was. And wood cogs made of hickory or black walnut. And for a drive shaft, most of them tried to get red maple. They’s a lot of this stuff that began to slip my mind until I started reading these here Foxfire papers. But all that stuff is the truth. I bet there ain’t a word in there from them old fellers what ain’t the truth. There’s so much of it I know. Now I’ve not done all of it, but they’s a lot of it that I have done. I’ve never built chimneys for log homes, but I’ve helped patch up one or two. I’ve been with a lot of different people and I’ve worked nearly everywhere.”

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R&M Heating and Cooling Comes Highly Recommended It’s hard to stop a Trane™, and it’s hard to stop Ron Baumes, the owner of R&M Heating and Cooling. Ron began his HVAC career working for Webb’s Heating and Cooling. Learning from Freddy Webb gave Ron a great start. He worked with Webb’s for years before deciding to start his own business in 2016. When he opened R&M Heating and Cooling his business model included a quality system, great customer service, well trained installation crews and a skilled repair technician. Being a Trane™ Comfort Specialist proves that the company agrees to abide by the requirements that Trane™ has established for their independent dealers, requirements that align with Ron’s business model. The company can sell and install other systems if customers request them and they service most all other brands as well. With two competent crews for installation, R&M Heating and Cooling gets the job done. Ron offers service contracts which include system checks twice a year to ensure that everything is running smoothly. When deciding on a new system for your new or existing home, Ron will come out for a consultation to assess your needs and what will work best to keep your family comfortable. Then a free quote on the system and installation will be offered up and your name will be added to their calendar. Trane™ offers a great warranty and R&M Heating and Cooling adds a one year warranty on labor. The business is truly a family owned and operated venture with Ron at the helm, his son working in the company and his wife Sabrina managing the office. This year R&M Heating and Cooling moved their office to 82 Plaza Way in Clayton. The new location in the Covered Bridge shopping center near the Northeast Georgia Food Bank offers more room and convenience for customers. A warning to Georgia Tech fans, this office is Georgia Bulldog all the way with a red and black theme and bulldog décor. They love and appreciate all of their customers no matter where their allegiance lies. For additional information please call 706-490-2584 or visit

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ENJOY life today, Yesterday is gone, & TOMORROW may never


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9 AROUND TOWN CHEROKEE HERITAGE FESTIVAL Saturday, September 18, 2021 ~10 am – 3 pm

Cherokee Homestead Exhibit 805 Hwy 64 Business – adjacent to Old Jail Museum, Hayesville, North Carolina Enjoy traditional Cherokee dancing, cultural arts demonstrations, storytelling, frybread, singing and flute music during this free festival at the outdoor 17th century Cherokee Homestead Exhibit, one of five attractions along a 2-mile Cherokee History Trail in Hayesville. Children of all ages will enjoy craft activities, practicing blowgun techniques, and a scavenger hunt with their families. Adults will enjoy plant walks through Native Botanical Gardens, led by the Hiawassee River Watershed Coalition staff. The adjacent Clay County “Old Jail” Museum will be open throughout the event. Free admission, parking and shuttle bus. Donations welcome. For additional information: 828-389-6531 or Sponsored by: Clay County Communities Revitalization Association

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The Of These Mountains Fall Marketplace By Kendall R. Rumsey

When we birthed the brand “Of These Mountains” at the end of 2018, one of our goals was to not only create a clothing brand that was designed and produced locally, in the north-Georgia mountains, but also to highlight the great artisans and makers that call our community home. As the brand has grown, we have been fortunate to share our love letter to the mountains that give us so much with customers around the country and even in foreign lands. At the end of 2020, when I did an analysis of our customer base, I was thrilled to see a tiny little brand, created, and produced in northeast Georgia had customers in 48 states and 2 foreign countries. In addition to our store, various retailers carrying the brand and our online sales, one of our favorite ways to promote Of These Mountains has been festivals. While 2020, was a booger as far as events, we have hit the ground running again in 2021 and have enjoyed visiting many areas through the southeast and our surrounding communities. By doing these festivals we have been introduced to many amazing makers and craftspeople whose passion for what they do is as great as ours. As we have participated in these festivals, it struck us that an event in Rabun County would be a great asset to our community. A place where local makers and craftspeople, along with those in surrounding communities could come and showcase their wares for our citizens and other shoppers from around the area. Thus, was born the “Of These Mountains Fall Marketplace!” Utilizing the incredible Rabun County Pavilions, located behind the Rabun County Civic Center, this November 6th, we are excited to present our first show. The pavilion spaces that were built by the Rabun County Commission are such an awesome venue and I congratulate the Commission for their foresight in building them, a gem that Rabun County is lucky to have. We are still accepting vendors for our November 6th event and if you would like to participate or know an artisan that you think should join us, please contact us at, give us a call at 706-754-8863 or visit our website, Finally, I hope you all will come out and join us for the Of These Mountains Fall Marketplace on Saturday, November 6th. The event will be FREE to the public and include some awesome artisans, food trucks, kid’s activities and entertainment, the event will be from 10am until 5pm.

Kendall Rumsey is a resident of Clayton, Georgia. He is owner of the lifestyle brand Of These Mountains and author of the blog, Notes from a Southern Kitchen.,

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Profile for The Laurel of Northeast Georgia

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Since 2003, our Laurel Magazine has set the standard in the area for editorial excellence. The Laurel of Northeast Georgia has a proven trac...

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