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Happy New Year!

from the Publisher


ere’s to a better year, welcome 2021. We can not wait to see you! If I had a magic wand or a time machine I would make 2020 much different than it was, but if I was to make a pros and cons list there are actually things I could list under pros. Here’s a short list: I am still in business, we have learned how to make the groceries last a week and I value people and paper products more than before. With the election behind us (will it ever really be over?) and the new calendar hung, I have hope that 2021 can and will offer some sort of resolution to the Covid-19 virus, perhaps it will teach us to be kinder to each other. Healing on all fronts will surely come in this new year. In this issue we are featuring some photos from a “pop-up” cover photo contest we executed through our social media page. In fact our cover image is the winner of that contest. Also Peter McIntosh again visited with the Photography class at North Georgia Technical College and is sharing some of the student’s work in his Adventure Out column. Our recipe section is full of recipes you’ll want to try and I’ll take you on a tour of Holistic Mountain Market, our community’s new health and wellness store. Ooshie is a Rabun County term for “baby it’s cold outside” and I feel sure it’ll be on the lips of all of us this month so wrap up, enjoy your Laurel, a warm beverage and stay well. You are all appreciated and in our prayers each month. Happy New Year! Tracy

January 2021 • Volume Eighteen • Issue One Georgia Mountain Laurel Mailing: PO Box 2218, Clayton, Georgia 30525 Office: 2511 Highway 441, Mountain City, Georgia 30562 706-782-1600 • Contributing Writers: John Shivers, Emory Jones, Jan Timms, Lorie Thompson, Richard Cinquina, Kathryn Revis, Mark Holloway, Liz Alley, Karla Jacobs, Gabe Southards

Publisher/Editor - Tracy McCoy Assistant Editor - D’Anna Coleman Art Director - Dianne VanderHorst Graphic Designer - Lucas McCoy Office Manager/ Account Executive - Cindi Freeman Account Executive - Melynda Hensley Photographer/Writer - Peter McIntosh

Copyright 2016 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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In This Issue

Arts & Entertainment 10

Cover Art Photo Contest Winners

Life & Leisure 16 18 20

Lovin’ The Journey By the Way Enough is Enough

Yesterdays 22

Rabun County Historical Society The Story of Mountain City

Faith in Christ 24 26 28

Rabun For the Gospel River Garden Build Bridges to a New Year

Health & Wellness

32 AGING 33 Take the Coffee Pot 34 5 Tips to Managing High Cholesterol

A Taste 36 38

Bon Appetit The Family Table

Mountain Living

44 “Enjoy” is the Mantra in this Home 48 A Private Pilot’s Dream Home

Around Town 52

Holistic Mountain Market

Outdoors 56 6

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Adventure Out

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Finding Art

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January Cover Contest – and the winner is… by Interview with Ashley


e love it when our readers share their photos with us so doing a pop-up winter photo contest to choose a cover for our January issue seemed like a great idea! On our facebook page we put out a call for photos and we had 65 entries. They were all great and told stories of favorite places and things that meant something to the person behind the lens. The comments on the photos were just as amazing. The cows submitted by Ann Houston must be a favorite of their Tiger, Georgia community. The photo of the Dillard Overlook by Judy Maney was so beautiful with a million hues of blue. Leisa Parker’s river photo was also a favorite so tranquil with the swing beside the water all covered in a blanket of snow. I could go on and on about each one. We looked over them all and narrowed the field down to a top 10 and posted them on our page and asked for your votes. We had an incredible response with nearly 2,000 votes cast. We decided to feature our top 10 in the magazine and the photo with the most votes on the cover. Not surprisingly the photo we titled “Wonder” taken by Ashley Stephens was the winner. I called Ashley and we had a nice visit on the phone. I wanted to know about this beautiful child in the photo and about Ashley’s photography. Tracy - Tell me about your youngest daughter featured in the image that won our contest. Ashley - That is Sutton otherwise known as “Sutty” and that was the first time she ever

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Ashley Stephens - Paul, Nora and Sutton saw snow. She didn’t speak, she just stared at it in amazement for the longest time. She is my little fireball. She is feisty and full of sass and imagination. She makes an impression wherever she goes. She is very loving but definitely has a will of her own. When I had my first daughter, Nora, she was so calm and sweet. In fact my friends would talk about the “terrible twos” and I thought that must just be a parenting issue cause Nora was never a problem. When Sutton came on the scene she humbled me fast! She is two and a handful! Tracy - Do you take photos for others or do you just take photos of your children?

Ashley - For a long time I thought photography would be my career. I am completely self taught so I thought the best way to learn was to just say “yes” all the time! I mean, practice makes perfect right? Working a full time job and having two little ones at home, I stretched myself too thin and got very overwhelmed. I took a step back, spent some time learning, practicing with (my favorite models) my girls and deciding what I wanted my future to be with photography. I lost my Mom at a young age. She hated the camera and would avoid it at all costs. When we were growing up not everyone had a nice camera or a cell phone to snap a picture and professional photographers were often unaffordable. Because of all these things my sister and I are left with very few pictures of/with her. That’s why I started taking pictures in the first place. I never want another family to be left without those memories because they couldn’t afford it or someone was uncomfortable in front of the camera. So while I have dialed it back quite a bit, I am happy to be offering sessions again. Anyone interested can email me - ashleystephensphotography526@ Tracy - Do you work full time? What does a day look like for your girls? What do they enjoy? Ashley - I do work in the office at Rabun County Middle School and I love it. Nora is in first grade at Rabun County Primary School and Sutty goes to Miss Brenda’s daycare or stays with her Nanny and Papa. She is very smart. In fact she came home from Miss Brenda’s speaking Spanish last week. She enjoys playing with dolls and other children. Nora is my sweet, social butterfly. A bit more reserved compared to Sutton who always makes her presence known. My husband Paul and I are blessed to have these two sweet girls. Thank you to Ashley and all who submitted images and all of you who voted. We love seeing your photos and your spot in the mountains. Here and on the folowing pages are the images that were voted on in our contest.

Judy Wilburn Maney

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January Cover Art Contest – Honorable Mention

Lorie Thompson

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Lee Parham

Ann Houston

Joi Woods

Lesia Parker

Carla Matheson

Marie Edmonds January 2021 - GML 13

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Lovin’ the Journey - The Three Legged Life W

ow!! We made it out of 2020. 20/20 is supposed to be perfect vision. Last year, maybe not.

I’m believing for a reset in 2021. . I’m a man of axioms. There are certain phrases which govern how I live. One of those sayings is so powerful, I simply had to find out who’d said it. I discovered the author of “Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.” That nugget of wisdom is from Tony Robbins. He’s a motivational influencer. We may open this new year like an exciting present or an unwanted bill. The potential of 2021 depends on my attitude. I’d like to share a rock solid principle that has changed the trajectory of my life. Life is about balance. I’ve learned there are three elements which make me whole: a developing mind, a physically fit body, and a thriving spirit. There’s a price to pay if I ignore any one of them. Imagine you’re sitting on a three-legged stool and someone kicks out one of the legs. We need all three. My life goal is to honor God and along the journey, soak up all the abundant life Jesus offers us. When I ignore my spirit, neglect my body, or fail to challenge my mind, I miss out. I know preachers who are strong spiritually but in poor physical condition. I hear folks at the gym speak as though they’ve not read a book in a long while. I have genius friends who are clueless about their personal eternity.

So, we have a challenge before us. How can we thrive in all three areas? Bruce Lee and John the Baptist both said something similar. (Here are two more axioms which make sense to me.) Bruce Lee said, “It’s not about the daily increase, but the daily decrease. So keep hacking away at the unessential.” Overlay that with John’s words, “I must decrease so that He would increase.” Keeping my spiritual house in order comes first. My mind and body follow. When the needle on my spiritual compass points true north, I can navigate accurately. Staying calibrated isn’t as difficult as we make it. If I quickly respond to the Holy Spirit when I sin and then I live out what Jesus teaches, I’m traveling in the right direction. So a healthy spirit is one leg of the stool. Another is our mental condition. I was sad when Alex Trebek passed away. He challenged me mentally. Cash Cab is another way I stay on my game. I love digging and finding out why things are. I challenge myself to always learn. Sometimes those around me are forced to hear what I’ve learned. I get it. Trivia can be trivial and not everyone wants to know the stuff inside my head. But one man’s trivia is another man’s treasure. I enjoy reading, particularly around the fire on early winter mornings. I’m not willing to get dumb as I get older. I have no plans to coast towards senility. I have friends who are older and they continue to challenge themselves. The other day I

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watched 90 year old Pat Robertson field difficult theological questions with the speed and agility of an athlete. I also am enjoying watching Andy interview his dad, Charles Stanley who turns 89 in September. My hope is to be mentally sharp like these men until my race is over. The last leg of the stool is challenging too. I love to measure my resting heart rate. There are many apps you can explore. How cool is it to simply press your finger to your cell phone’s camera lens before getting out of bed and quickly get an accurate indicator what shape you’re in. The lower the number the better you are. I’ve learned this much... the better shape I’m in, the better my prayer life, thought life, work life, and outdoor life. A strong cardio impacts my marriage, business, and relationships. In addition to distance running and mountain biking, I’ve added a new cardio activity. My daughter invited me to join her at Mark Gerrell’s kick boxing class at Your Time Fitness. Lately, I’ve been sore in places I didn’t know existed. Steady on friends. Don’t get knocked off your stool. See you on the trail. Mark and his wife, Carol, are the owners of Fresh Start, a company dedicated to stewarding the property and homes of their clients. They aspire to be your eyes, ears and hands while you are away, and your resource for anything you need, whether you are a full or part time resident of the area. Mark can be reached by calling 706-490-7060.

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By the Way – Fame doesn’t always end well for a pig. By Emory Jones


new book about some of my pet pig Cunningham’s exploits is about to come out, and I’m more than a little concerned about how he’s going to react.

Because if history teaches us anything, it’s that fame doesn’t always end well for pigs. Take ole Big Bill, for example. Bill was a Tennessee hog who, back in 1933, weighed in at 1,157 kilograms. (Before you judge somebody who uses the metric system, walk 1.609344 kilometers in their shoes.) Plus, while Americans haven’t totally embraced the metric system yet, we are inching toward it, foot by foot. But in case you don’t have a calculator handy, that’s 2,552 pounds. And, according to the latest Guinness book, that record still stands. They say ole Bill stood about five feet tall at the shoulder, which, I bet, is another record all by itself. Bill was on his way to a gig at the Chicago World’s Fair when he broke his leg and had to be put down. His owner had him mounted and charged folks a dine apiece to see him. Nobody seems to know where that stuffed pig is today, although you’d think a hog that huge would be right hard to lose. Another pig named Maude was pretty famous in her day. Maude was President Teddy Roosevelt’s pet, and they say he was quite fond of her. However, nobody knows what happened to Maude once Roosevelt left the White House. But, from what little I’ve read about Teddy, things probably didn’t end well for her. Another famous pig may have had a better outcome. In 1942, during WWII, an oinker named King Neptune helped raise more than $19 million in war bonds. Initially, he was supposed to be the, quote, “guest of honor” at a fundraising dinner, but a Navy man had a better idea. He decided to auction the pig off “in parts” to be divided up later. However, none of the kind-hearted buyers wanted the parts to be split up. So, the Navy tried again. To make a short story longer, they started auctioning him off all over Illinois. Before long, everyone wanted to buy, but not own, a piece of this pig. When “The King” died at the ripe old age of eight in 1950, the Navy gave him a military funeral with full honors. Another pig named Khanzir gained fame, although not fortune, for being the only pig in Afghanistan, a country with no hog farms. They put him on display at the Kabul Zoo, located in Kabul, as I understand it. Even though he was famous, ole Khanzir had to be one more lonesome swine.

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Of course, he didn’t have to worry about anybody eating him. Cunningham may never become as well-known as Big Bill, King Neptune, Maude, or even poor ole Khanzir. But if Cunningham does become notable, I hope he uses his fame for good. Maybe he could raise more money for the Navy. Or apply to be the next presidential pet. But, knowing Cunningham, he’ll likely head for Hollywood. He’s always had a crush on Miss Piggy. Plus, his dream is to one day meet Arnold from Green Acres. The book is called Cunningham and Other Pigs I Have Known. It should be here by Valentine’s Day. I mean, in case your sweetie loves pigs. 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 five books, including The Valley Where They Danced; Distant Voices: The Story of the Nacoochee Valley Indian Mound; a humorous history book called Zipping Through Georgia on a Goat Powered Time Machine; White County 101 and Heart of a Co-op--The Habersham EMC Story. 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.

Welcome 2021!

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Enough is Enough


ometimes, I get up early and slip outside, closing the door to the warmth of my home and enter the peace of a winter morning. If I’m on Burton, at my sister’s house, I might see the purple and pink light of dawn wrapping itself around the mountains and onto the calm of the lake below. If it’s cold enough, some icicles will capture the winter sunlight and hold it, frozen it seems, in eternity. If I listen carefully, I might hear the hoot of an owl and if I look carefully, I’ll see the outlines of the trees and how their black figures come to life in the breaking dawn. “Out there,” I think to myself, “the world awaits.” It waits for the callings of life to be fulfilled. But for now, the silence feels like the best kind of solitude. It is in this silence I realize I come to the mountains to be soothed. I have come to the mountains to put my senses back in order from the holidays and the busyness they bring. The world is such a noisy place, voices chime in from every direction urging me to do better, be better, strive more, have more, improve, hustle, grasp, and get what I can. “What if,” I wonder, “I can’t do that?” What if all that urging and striving leaves me worn out and sad? Because it does.

By Liz Alley

What if my impact in this world is just to those around me and not in far reaching places? What if I am only a good daughter, mom, grandmother, sister, friend, neighbor? What if I sponsor a child but never go on a mission trip? What if I don’t grow my business into making a lot of money? What if I only write an article but never a book? What if I’m too religious for some people but not spiritual enough for others? What if instead of a big ministry, I have a deep personal relationship with God that I share in quiet ways to those who are hurting? What if I share my insecurities with someone who is struggling, such as how I wanted to be married but had to find my life in divorce? What if I can’t keep up with the people around me that seem to have boundless energy? What if when I travel to faraway places, I find my way to cobbled streets instead of the sights to be seen. What if I am moved by the simplicity of laundry on a line or a woman closing her eyes in pleasure as she tastes the fresh cantaloupe she’s selling? What if I don’t count the steps I take but walk the trails of the mountains knowing each step is healing a small part of my soul? Is that enough? What if the balm that soothes me is not out in the world but in a book, on my table and a chair by the window? What if when I don’t know what to do or I have a lack of direction, I accept that and stop trying to force that direction to come. What if I wait to be led? What if I make room for enjoyment of all the things in my life like taking a shower and making my bed, my granddaughter’s small body next to mine like spoons in a drawer when she sleeps with me, my grandson learning to crawl? Would that count? This introverted heart needs to know, what is enough? Is this small but beautiful life enough? These are the questions I ponder. These are the thoughts I lay before the morning cold, to air them out. It is in the dawn of winter I set my intentions for the new year, to remind myself whatever they are and whatever they are not, they are enough. 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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Water Flowing East and West, a Land Speculating Sheriff and Passover:

The Story of Mountain City By Dick Cinquina


ountain City’s history is entwined with a Native American legend and a sheriff who saw the lucrative potential of a railroad.

Our story starts centuries ago in the time of Notla, son of a Cherokee chief, who wanted to marry Hiawassee, daughter of a Catawba chief. Hiawassee’s father, who had no love for the Cherokees, told Notla that the Catawba drank the waters of the east (present-day North and South Carolina), while the Cherokee drank the waters of the west (Georgia and Tennessee). If Notla could find where these waters united, then and only then, would he be permitted to wed Hiawassee. The Catawba chief was confident this mysterious place never would be found. The love-struck Notla went off on this seemingly impossible search. After months of exploration, so the legend goes, he came to a mountain valley containing a pool of water that was acting strangely. From the west end of the pool, the water flowed west. From the pool’s east end, the water flowed to the east. Notla realized he had found the spot where the waters were united before running off to the Catawabas in the east and the Cherokees in the west. Though now able to claim Hiawassee as his bride, her father was nevertheless furious at this turn of events. To escape his wrath, the couple fled to an area now known as the town of Hiawassee. Passover Founded Atop Eastern Continental Divide Fast forward to 1903 when Sheriff D. W. Johnson of Hart County, Georgia, traveled to Tennessee to return an escaped prisoner. On his way back, he passed through Rabun Gap (not the town of the same name a few miles to the north), a scenic passage through the Blue Ridge Mountains of Rabun County. Said to be taken by the beauty of this place, Johnson acquired approximately 600 acres in the valley. After having the land surveyed into lots, he incorporated the area in 1904.

Capitalizing on Tallulah Falls Railroad When Sheriff Johnson acquired the land in 1903 that became Passover, the Tallulah Falls Railroad was being built northward in stages from Tallulah Falls. It was not until 1906 that the line was extended to Passover before reaching its terminus at Franklin, North Carolina in 1907. Johnson was more than an admirer of beautiful terrain. He also was a shrewd investor, who was speculating on the coming of the railroad from the outset of his land purchases. With that apparently in mind, he built the Blue Heights Hotel in 1903. It became popular with tourists traveling by horse and buggy. He likely figured business would explode when tourists could make the journey to Passover faster and easier by train.

D.W. Johnson is on the left in a photo made in Mountain City. The Tallulah Falls Railroad was built in 1906 where the fence is in the photo.

He called his town Passover. Not to be confused with the sacred Jewish holiday, the name Passover, or Pass Over as the town was initially called, was chosen because people traveling through Rabun Gap passed over the eastern continental divide at nearly 2,000 feet. Just as Notla witnessed long ago, water on the north side of the continental divide flows west into the Little Tennessee River and then to the Tennessee River, Ohio River and Mississippi River, which empties into the Gulf of Mexico. Water on the south slope of the divide flows east into the Chatooga and Tallulah rivers, the Tugalo River and the Savannah River, before emptying into the Atlantic.

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The Blue Heights Hotel burned around 1955

Apples and Clogging In addition to tourism, Mountain City also benefited from apples, which became a significant business in the 1920s. A packinghouse able to store 20,000 bushels of apples was built in 1933 near the train depot in downtown Mountain City. Given the fact that Rabun County was the moonshine capital of Georgia, there is a strong likelihood that a certain portion of the apple crop was transformed into applejack in stills hidden in the mountain hollows around the town.

The New Rabun Hotel was later called the Colonial Lodge

1906 Land Auction To take maximum advantage of the railroad, Johnson held a land auction in 1906. A newspaper ad carried a map of Passover, surveyed into approximately 800 lots. Headlined “Big Barbecue, Land Sale at Auction, and a Railroad Celebration at Passover (Rabun Gap) on the New Tallulah Falls Railway (Rabun Gap Route),” the ad extolled the many virtues of Passover. “The construction of the Tallulah Falls Railway through Rabun County (now completed to this point) has opened up one of the most healthful and picturesque spots in all of Georgia, if not the whole South, to those who seek fortune and health. The great forests and mineral wealth of this section are already famous, and the construction of this enterprise opens fields for investments unsurpassed in the whole South. Anyone wishing to invest in these properties can do so without fear of financial loss or pecuniary doubt.”

During the 1950s and 1960’s, Mountain City was best known for its Playhouse, where crowds gathered every Saturday night for traditional Appalachian folk dancing. In addition to clogging, buck dancing and square dancing, locally-distilled liquid refreshments (possibly applejack) were said to be available to patrons in the parking lot. The Playhouse closed its doors in the early 1980s. The hotels, the apple warehouse, the applejack stills (well, most of them) and the Tallulah Falls Railroad have been gone for decades. Today, travelers on U.S. 23/441 pass through Mountain City much as they passed over the continental divide in the days of Passover, albeit at much slower speeds. And water in Mountain City continues to flow west to the Gulf of Mexico and east to the Atlantic.

Passover Becomes Mountain City In a nod to marketing his land, Johnson changed the town’s name in 1907. The Georgia legislature’s articles of municipal incorporation stated that “the village now known as Passover, located in Rabun Gap, at the highest point of the Tallulah Falls Railroad, in the county of Rabun, be…hereby incorporated under the name and style of the ‘Town of Mountain City…’ ” The document defined the corporate limits of Mountain City as “extending three-quarters of a mile from the center of the railroad, where it passes over the watershed (continental divide) of the Blue Ridge Mountains.” Johnson was appointed Mountain City’s first mayor. The new mayor took his own advice about the investmentworthiness of Mountain City. In 1907, he built his second hotel, the 40-room New Rabun Hotel. A newspaper ad said: “Our rates are very low, considering the service: ranging from $12.50 to $25.00 per week and $3.25 to $4.25 daily.” Among the hotel’s bargain-rate services was a farm-to-table dining experience. “We serve vegetables from our own garden; poultry from our poultry yard; milk from our dairy; and country ham.” The ham apparently was sourced from someone else’s hogs.

Square dancing at the Mountain City Playhouse in the 1970s Learn more about our history by becoming a member of the Rabun County Historical Society. Membership and complete information about the Society are available at You also can visit us on Facebook. Our museum at 81 N. Church St. in downtown Clayton currently is closed while undergoing an extensive renovation. However, the building is open from noon to 3 on Saturdays for people interested in researching county and family histories. The Society is a not-for-profit organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, making your membership dues and donations fully tax deductible. January 2021 - GML 23

H.O.P.E. in 2021 Rev. Gabe Southards - Head of Tennessee Baptist Church


or many, the year 2020 will be a year to which they will gladly wave goodbye and will be thankful to see in their rearview mirror, leaving behind all the memories and scars of shutdowns, schoolwork at home, sickness, sorrow, and looking forward perhaps to better things in 2021. Of course, I am sure for most there were happy days in 2020 as well, but those days and moments just seem to pale in comparison to what everyone in this world went through and are still going through today. However, there can still be HOPE in 2021 regardless of the uncertainties ahead. Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:… he humbled himself…became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Romans 5:1-5, Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. We have hope in Jesus Christ because He became a servant and was obedient to the death of the cross of Calvary. Because of the great love of God, he sent Jesus to die for our sins so that we might have this hope through faith in the wonderful work of Christ on the cross. This hope was a gift of grace to the whole world, and His obedience and willingness to become a servant to a world of sinners should be our example to follow. We should be willing to be obedient to the call of God on our lives to be servants not only to God, but to our fellow man. This will bring H.O.P.E. in 2021, and I believe we can accomplish this by doing four things: Helping, Offering, Praising, Encouraging!

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Helping: Simply put, we can help. We can help those who are struggling, no matter the reason why, realizing that there are lives within our reach that we can impact just by helping. Jesus said in John 13:34 “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” Because of the love of God toward fallen man, Jesus brought hope. So, if we love as He loved us, then we can bring hope to our fellow man, by showing them the love of Jesus by helping in their time of need. Offering: In order for us to help, we must be willing to offer. We have all been in situations that we could have helped, but just failed to offer, and then afterwards, regretted not offering to help. I have always said that God is not as interested in our ability as He is in our availability. We ought to determine in our hearts, that if a need arises, that we will make ourselves available; that we will offer. Proverbs 3:27 says, “Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.” John Wesley said of this verse, “Withhold not – Do not deny it, but readily and cheerfully impart it. Good – Any thing which is good, either counsel, comfort, reproof, or the good things of the present life. Due – That is, to all men, by that great and sovereign law of love.” In other words, offer. Offer your time, your talent, and even your treasure when the need arises, and it is within the power of your hand to do so. Praising: The Apostle Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 5:16, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” One of the greatest privileges we have as children of God is the privilege of praising God! And, one

of the greatest testimonies that a child of God can have is that, even through difficult times, they still stand and praise God. 2020 had its tough times, and I am sure that 2021, before it is over, will have its share of tough times as well, but, through all of it, keep praising God! It will renew the hope in you, and it will give hope to those around you who need it. Encouraging: Romans 15:1-2 says, “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification.” The word “edification” means to build up, or to encourage. You meet people every day who need encouragement. They need someone to breathe a little hope into their situation, and who better than you to offer a word of help and encouragement to someone who could use it! My hope and prayer this year is that we as individuals will take the hope of Jesus Christ to the world around us by Helping, Offering, Praising, and Encouraging!

Have a Happy and Blessed 2021! January 2021 - GML 25

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Building Bridges to A New Year By Karla Jacobs


urning a page on a new year has never felt so good, has it? The Year of Our Lord 2020 was a doozy for sure, and I for one am glad to see the back end of it.

A new year is a time for a fresh start, and for me it also means starting a fresh journal for the year. Some of you might go for the new desk planner or wall calendar. The technically savvy might do all their task management with an online app. For me, a new year means breaking in a new bullet journal, which is a fancy system for journaling, time management, and to-do lists all in one book. It’s my preferred method for keeping myself organized and on task, and I’ve been keeping one for about three years now. As I get myself organized each year, I like to find a quote that will be my theme for the year, and I write it on the first page of my journal so it’s easily accessible. It can be a scripture passage or something someone I admire said. My chosen quote from 2019 was surprisingly controversial, and I got a little pushback when I shared it with my friends on Facebook. It’s from one of my favorite writers, Charles Krauthammer: “You’re betraying your whole life if you don’t say what you think—and you don’t say it honestly and bluntly.” I’m a huge fan of being honest and blunt. That year I worked to be honest and forthright in all my writing—tempered with tact, of course—and it served me well.

lose my dad or that the world would be turned upside down by a deadly global pandemic. It’s been a season of grief for many. It’s been a season of isolation for some and a season of overwhelming togetherness for others working and going to school from home. It’s been a season of learning to move about in the world in new ways for all of us. As King Solomon told us, “To everything there is a season,” and The Byrds responded “Turn, turn, turn,” life keeps moving forward. Seasons come and go; the world keeps turning. This year has taught us that if nothing else. I found the quote for my 2021 journal earlier than usual this year as I was thinking about gratitude and Thanksgiving. This one is from Maya Angelou. She says, “Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer. And let faith be the bridge you build to overcome evil and welcome good.” I like that it gives a nod to the past in gratitude while looking forward to the future in building bridges. We’re going to need more bridges. If 2020 was a year of change, 2021 will be a year of transition. We expect COVID-19 vaccines to be available to all by the summer, and as the worst of the pandemic comes to a close, we will begin to see what the new normal looks like. I don’t know that we will live and work and go to school and gather the ways we did in the Before Times ever again. Technology could be cold and impersonal, but it was dang convenient. There are also things I don’t want to go back to. I’ve enjoyed the slower pace of a sparse schedule, and I don’t want back in the rat race.

If 2020 was a year of change,

This year of transition will also be a year of opportunity, a chance to build something new. In the quietness and the slower pace of the last year, we have had a chance to look closely at the things that give our lives meaning and bring us joy. Sometimes we’ve seen those things in stark relief because for a while they weren’t available to us. My prayer for all of us is that we can take what we’ve learned to cherish and build the futures that suit us and our families the best.

2021 will be a year of transition.

I knew 2020 was going to be a year of change, and my Quote of the Year reflected that. It was from Ecclesiastes 3:1, “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.” I knew old seasons would be coming to a close as my daughter graduated from high school, and new seasons would be beginning as she moved away to college. This marks the beginning of the end of our child raising season for my husband and me—we still have one in the nest—and a new season of growth and adventure for her. When I chose that quote, I did not know we were going to

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Have a happy and blessed New Year. Karla Jacobs is a freelance writer, a soccer mom, and a community volunteer with deep family roots in the North Georgia Mountains. When not writing about pop culture, policy, and politics, she can often be found hiking backcountry trails with her family. She lives in Marietta, Georgia with her husband and their two teenage children.

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Healthy and Well

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AGING… By Kathryn Revis

I’m getting so old that all my friends in heaven will think I didn’t make it.

...“there are resources available for the elderly, not the least of which is the abundant love and mercy of our God and Savior”.


remember coming home after a long day at work as a Registered Nurse and opening my mailbox only to see an invitation to join AARP. I immediately became indignant saying to myself, “I am not OLD enough to belong to AARP”! “How dare them”! Well I blinked my eyes and suddenly I WAS old enough to join AARP and to qualify for ‘Senior Discounts’. I can testify that time does seem to go faster the older one becomes! “Warp Speed”, actually! We all have witnessed the aging of a parent, grandparent, or other loved ones. Perhaps we might have declared that we were not going to be “like that” when we get old. I remember saying to myself and others, that I was going to age “gracefully”? Depending on your source, and according to the United States Census Bureau, there are over 54 million US citizens 65 years of age and older. As I am an advocate of mandatory courses on “Marriage and Relationships” being taught in high school and college; I am also an advocate of courses on AGING being taught some where along life’s way. I had plenty of nursing education on geriatric patients, but I still wake up each day and look in the mirror and see changes and think “REALLY”? I understand physiologically why I can’t do some of the things that I did when I was younger (like clean my house from top to bottom in one day) but, I don’t have to like the limitations that may arise! I can learn to adapt and learn different ways of doing things and work on ways to improve my health and safety every day. I find humor and laughing at myself helps soften the sometimes harsh reality of aging. I understand the loneliness and isolation aging adults can feel when their children move far away; and, when they watch members of their own family and friends die. I hope that my articles can educate and inform you of the aging process and help you understand what is normal and what is not and when you should seek medical advice. Most importantly, I hope I can reassure you that you are not alone and that there are resources available for the elderly, not the least which is the abundant love and mercy of our God and Savior. I ran across this post on the website “Nextdoor”. This article so elegantly and poignantly written by Richard Maffeo expresses in short and concise terms what it feels like to grow old. His beautiful Mother’s body language echos his belated perspective of her loss. I would like to thank Richard for allowing me to share his post which must have been painful for him to write. I hope younger generations will heed his wise advice. Kathryn Speed Revis is a retired Registered Nurse with a lifetime of experience teaching and practicing nursing in some of Georgia’s finest hospitals. Her articles are intended to offer practical advice on facing health conditions and living your best life.

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Take the Coffee Pot By Richard Maffeo

If you still have your parents – or parent – be glad. It will seem only a few moments and they will be gone. So, please, for their sake – AND for yours – don’t be so much a person ‘on a mission’ to get things done that you miss the subtle heartbreak of your mom or dad as a lifetime of memories – a LIFETIME of memories – slowly come to an end for them. Take the coffee pot. And the bed sheets. And the dishes. Those baubles may be unimportant to you, but to your mom or dad they represent their desperate need to give you something of their lives – and their memories. I wish someone had told me these things years ago, before she died.


took this picture in the summer of 2015. I’d flown down to Florida to move Mom from her two-bedroom condo to a studio apartment in a 55+ community near my wife and me in Georgia. In this photo, Mom is watching the movers pack what little of her life’s possessions she’d be able to take to her new place.

Richard Maffeo is a retired Navy nurse who lives with his wife of 46 years in Cumming, Georgia. He is an author, blogger, Christ-follower, an educator and student of God’s Word. We invite you to visit his blogs and

When I took the photo, I was oblivious to what SHOULD have been clear. She’s hurting. Her heart is bleeding as she helplessly watches strangers wrap and pack and stack what are much more than furniture and dishes and towels and pictures. She is watching her memories, her dreams, her hopes – her life slip from her fingers. Each time I look at the photo I regret so much not having recognized her heartbreak. But I was a man on a mission. I needed to get her close to me. She was no longer safe to live by herself. A year or so before she died in her apartment in Georgia, she began offering me odds and ends from her new place. Maybe she had a feeling her months were now numbered, and she wanted – she NEEDED – to give me something tangible of herself, things that were totally insignificant to me, but to her held special meaning. She offered me a stovetop coffee percolator. What did I need with a percolator? We own a Keurig. I politely refused. Another time she told me to take her old blanket. I declined. We have more blankets in our house than we know what to do with. Another time, “Here, take these sheets.” But what did I need with more sheets? And now she’s gone. January 2021 - GML 33

5 Tips for Managing High Cholesterol pressure, high cholesterol and if you smoke. Your diet, physical activity levels, alcohol intake and any drugs or supplements you’ve been taking factor into your risk level, as well. 2. Eat a heart-healthy diet. From a dietary standpoint, one of the best ways to lower your cholesterol is to avoid foods with saturated fat and trans fat. Limit saturated fat to 5-6% of your daily calories and avoid trans fat, which means limiting intake of processed or fatty meats and full-fat dairy products. Choose low-fat dairy products and lean proteins instead.


igh cholesterol is one of the major controllable risk factors for coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke, but typically shows no symptoms. Understanding the role cholesterol plays, potential risk factors and how to manage it are important aspects of protecting your heart health. LDL cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein) is considered “bad” cholesterol because it contributes to fat buildup in the arteries while HDL cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein) is considered “good” cholesterol as it can carry LDL cholesterol away from the arteries to be broken down and passed from the body. The LDL cholesterol level is important to monitor and is optimal when it is less than 100 for otherwise healthy people, according to the American Heart Association, which recommends adults age 20 or older should have their cholesterol and other risk factors checked every 4-6 years by their primary care physician with a simple blood test. Cholesterol management is not one size fits all, so those who have already experienced a heart attack or stroke, or have family history of high cholesterol, may need to have their cholesterol levels and risk factors checked more often and may need to make lifestyle changes or take prescribed medication to help manage cholesterol levels. Make informed decisions about managing your cholesterol levels and overall health with these tips from the American Heart Association’s “Check. Change. Control. Cholesterol” program, nationally supported by Amgen:

A heart-healthy diet emphasizes fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, whole grains, lean vegetable or animal proteins and fish while limiting things like trans fats, sodium, processed meats, refined carbohydrates and sugary foods and beverages. Eating this way may also help increase your fiber intake, which can help lower cholesterol levels by as much as 10%. 3. Be physically active. A sedentary lifestyle lowers HDL cholesterol. Just 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise a week is enough to help lower both LDL cholesterol and high blood pressure. Consider mixing up the options to keep your exercise routine engaging and prevent boredom. Try activities like brisk walking, swimming, bicycling or dancing. 4. Quit smoking and avoid secondhand smoke. Smoking lowers HDL cholesterol. What’s more, when a person with unhealthy cholesterol levels also smokes, his or her risk of coronary heart disease increases more than it would otherwise. Smoking also compounds other risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure and diabetes. By quitting, smokers can lower their cholesterol levels and help protect their arteries. Nonsmokers should avoid exposure to secondhand smoke as much as possible. 5. Lose weight. Being overweight or obese tends to raise LDL cholesterol and lower HDL cholesterol. A weight loss of as little as 10% can help improve your cholesterol numbers. Find more resources and tools to help manage your heart health and cholesterol at

1. Assess your risk. Your health care professional can help determine your risk for a cardiovascular event like heart attack or stroke and help manage your cholesterol as one aspect of preventive care. Your medical and family history and your lifestyle provide important clues about your risk level. Risk is elevated for people who have had a heart attack or stroke; blockages in the arteries of the heart, neck or legs; chronic inflammatory disease; kidney disease; or other medical concerns. Your health care professional will also consider your age, sex, whether you have diabetes, high blood

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Family Features article Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Healthy and Well

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Bon Appétit

2021 Is Finally Here! By Scarlett Cook


s I write this Covid-19 still has Rabun County and the rest of the world in its grip. But help is on the way with new vaccines arriving on the market. Nothing is more soothing than a bowl of hot soup with cornbread or crackers. These recipes should warm you up and give your usual soup recipes a rest. So put your soup on and watch another rerun (or rerun of a rerun) of your favorite show. 2021 is looking hopeful; just hang in there. Corn Chowder Serves 4 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter 2 Cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced 1 Medium onion, chopped 1/2 Fresh jalapeno, seeded and chopped* 1 Cup chicken stock 3 Cups corn kernels, fresh, frozen or canned (if canned, drained well) Salt & pepper to taste 1 1/2 Cups whipping cream Melt butter in a large saucepan and sauté the garlic and onion until tender. Stir in the jalapeno and cook a minute longer. Add the stock and corn to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Carefully place soup into a blender in batches and blend until creamy. (Or use an immersion blender in the pot.) Return soup to pot and season with salt & pepper and add the cream. Reheat but do not allow soup to boil. *If a spicer soup is desired, use a whole jalapeno. Crab Bisque Serves 6 6 Green onions, chopped 1/2 Stick unsalted butter 1/4 Cup plain flour 3 Cups milk 1 1/2 Cups half & half 2 Teaspoons salt 1/2 Teaspoon paprika Tabasco to taste 1 Pound lump crabmeat, free of shell and cartilage In a large saucepan, sauté the onions in the butter until softened 3- 4 minutes. Blend in the flour and cook over low heat for 5 minutes. Stir in the milk and half & half and cook just until warm. Stir in salt and paprika; add Tabasco to taste and stir well. Add the crabmeat; stirring slowly. Heat until soup simmers – do not boil.

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Carrot & Potato Soup Serves 4 1/2 Stick unsalted butter 1 Small onion, minced 4 Cups chicken stock 1 1/2 Pounds of carrots, peeled and thinly sliced 1 Large potato, peeled and cubed 1/2 Cup half & half Salt & pepper to taste Melt butter in heavy saucepan; add onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add stock, carrots and potatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer covered until vegetables are tender about 30 – 35 minutes. Add half & half and heat to just a simmer. Season to taste and serve hot or cold.

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The Family Table by Lorie R. Thompson


elcome to 2021! I know everyone is glad to see the beginning of a new year and the end of 2020.

A few weeks before Christmas, I saw a Facebook post requesting that friends include one of their favorite recipes in their annual Christmas card exchange. Of course, in my continual quest for new recipes to try, I copied and pasted the post to my page and, in just a few days, received my first Christmas card, including a recipe. I have enjoyed the ones I received so much! I will share some of the local recipes next month. My cousin, Andy Cambry (Ramey), sent me a lovely recipe for a bread pudding, and I would like to share it with you. January is a perfect month for bread pudding. Made with ingredients you will have on hand, it is economical, but it feels (and tastes) rich and decadent. Before I share the recipe, let me tell you about my cousins. Several years ago, my brother, James Cannon Ramey, got a phone call from a gentleman in England inquiring if Cannon might have known a Thomas Cannon Ramey from Wiley. The gentleman had found Cannon’s phone number on the internet and made a random call, hoping for a connection. My brother Cannon knew that Mom and Dad named him after Uncle Cannon, who had died a month before he was born. Thomas Cannon Ramey was born in January 1916 in Wiley, Georgia. It has been passed through our family that he was a tall, dark, and handsome man. He was well-spoken and well-liked. Cannon served in WWII. His last post was in England, where he met the love of his life, Margaret. At the end of the war, Cannon was sent home with the other troops, and Margaret was left in England. The family story has it that Cannon was working to raise enough money for Margaret and their young son Terry’s passage to the United States when he was killed in a car accident. It is so sad that he survived World War II unscathed, and after being home for only a short time, was killed almost within sight of his family home. A tragedy for the Ramey family in Wiley and Cannon’s young family in England. Cannon’s Mother, Sarah Etta Ramey (my Great Grandmother), corresponded with Margaret and Terry throughout her life. Terry recalls letters and always receiving a gift at Christmas. Sadly, they were never able to meet. In the timeframe of the 1940s and 1950s, England was a great distance from Wiley, Georgia. After Sarah Etta’s death, there was no other communication between the families. Fast forward two generations, and Terry’s son Andy (Thomas Cannon Ramey’s grandson) found Ramey Builders on the internet with a “Cannon Ramey” listed as the contact. Andy called Cannon and discovered that he had an entire clan of Ramey family in Rabun County, Georgia. Phone conversations and email exchanges led to a visit from Terry and his wife, Helen. Andy and his wife Charli surprised their Mom and Dad by showing up for a visit, too. It was thrilling to get to add more family. At long last, Terry got to meet his Dad’s side of the family! We fed them, took them sight-seeing, and fed them some more. In true southern style, we took them to visit the cemeteries and then fed them again. They love the South and their Georgia family. Andy and Charli have since visited several times, and it has been delightful to get to know our long-lost cousins. Andy read my Facebook post requesting a recipe Christmas card exchange and stepped right up with this beautiful Bread Pudding dish. Enjoy! Whisk up four eggs and two cups of milk, adding 2 tsp of vanilla and 1tsp cinnamon. Using softened butter, grease an 8x8 baking dish to prevent sticking.

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You can use brown or white bread slices. Cut each piece into quarters. Layer the bread slices upright in the baking dish making sure it is sticking out at the top. Pour the milk and egg mixture over the bread. Place glazed cherries or raisins across the whole dish and then sprinkle it all with 1T white sugar and 1T brown sugar. Add 1T honey, dripping it slowly over the bread that is still sticking out of the mix. Put in the oven at 350 for 25-30 minutes and then enjoy. The honey and sugar at the top will make sure the bread is slightly crunchy, and the rest will be delightfully stodgy and lovely. Now, let me tell you about Terry’s wife, Helen’s wonderful Yorkshire Puddings. Helen says that most English girls learn to make Yorkshire Puddings as their Mother taught them. Anytime you have pan drippings from a roast, use them for the Yorkshire Pudding or use sunflower oil. Here is Helen’s recipe: Mix 4 eggs, 3/4C plain flour, and 3/4 C liquid (half milk and half water). Whisk until bubbles form. Refrigerate batter for 30 minutes. Drizzle oil into a muffin tin. Place in a preheated 350-degree oven and allow the oil to get hot. Look for a haze on top of the oil. Add batter to the tin. The batter should sizzle in the oil. Place back into the hot oven and cook for 20-25 minutes or until the puddings are golden brown. Serve immediately with roast beef and vegetables. I am so happy to know my English cousins. I am glad that we have connected. Cousin Terry has another son, and I am hoping to meet him one day, too. Terry’s grandson, Harry, has visited, and he is a handsome young man. I am hopeful to see them all back in Georgia one day. We all look for connections. Humans were designed to need interaction with other people. Family ties are strong, but they need nurturing to maintain them. There is no better way to do that than sharing time and, of course, sharing a meal. I hope you will enjoy the Ramey family recipes from across the big pond. Happy January!

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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May every day of the new year glow with good cheer & happiness for you and your family.

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SERVICES for Your Home and Property

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Enjoy” is the Mantra in this Home

by John Shivers


hen the architect finished the plans for the home at 91 Winchester Lane on Lake Burton outside Clayton, the label “fantastic family home” must have been somewhere on those drawings. In the almost 35 years since the house was built, it has lived up to that label. Now, this pristine, well-maintained three-level “cottage” is ready to welcome a new family with new interests and activities. This is the first time this fee simple home has been on the market, and its location on a hill overlooking a quiet lake cove and the boathouse for two make this property one that you have to consider. The water is safe for swimming and there’s easy access to the main lake. It’s designed for year-round living, and is only minutes away from Waterfall Club and Clayton with its shops and many dining options. The sturdy covered timber and stone entryway greets owners and guests alike with a warm and comfortable unspoken invitation to enter and enjoy. Rough-sawn siding painted in hues complementary to the heavily wooded half-acre± lakefront lot and the many windows and dormers bid welcome, and the promise of hospitality. Inside, this essence of hospitality continues with high ceilings, hardwood floors, and a totally livable, open-concept floor plan. Inside, the stained tongue and groove ceilings create a comfortable, cozy place to chill out, sit back and relax. The steeplypitched great room ceiling gives the eye interesting angles to consider, and also opens the space up to the loft area over the kitchen that anchors one end of the great room. Spaciousness is the name of the game here, and the resident chef can cook and serve and still be in on all the activity surrounding the mountain stone fireplace at the opposite end of the room, one of four such fireplaces in the home. With generous cabinet and solid-surface countertop space, this is a galley where the serious cook and a master of the microwave alike can both function comfortably. An electric range, refrigerator, microwave / vent hood, dishwasher and trash compactor make the cook’s duties so easy, and the kitchen easily accommodates extra helpers. In addition, an island with prep space on the kitchen side and a raised breakfast bar on the other side next to the dining table, contribute to the flexibility and livability of this 3,000± square foot home. Mere steps away a screened porch running the length of the lake side of the house provides additional dining space, or just a place to sit back and enjoy the view. And there’s plenty of space to sleep all those hungry mouths who’ll eat the cook’s creations. There’s a fully-contained master suite with en suite baths on each level. A fourth bedroom is also on the walk-out terrace level. Plus, there’s a sleeping loft and two additional bunk rooms. Whether it’s a house party, or the entire family gathered for a holiday celebration, there’s always room for one more to enjoy the home. The 169 feet of waterfront is crowned by the two-level boathouse and is easily accessible from the house, thanks to a gently sloping set of steps that originate from both the home’s main level screened porch and the terrace level. Up top on the boathouse is a covered area and a large, open area perfect for getting a few sun rays, carefully of course, or just observing the beautiful surroundings that include a recreational water area that’s safely secluded from the main lake traffic. Harry Norman, REALTORS® Luxury Lake and Mountain Agent Jennifer Kyle represents this home, GMLS #8869932. Contact Jennifer at (cell) 706-968-2255 or (office) 706-212-0228 for more information and to view this property. January 2021 - GML 45

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A Private Pilot’s Dream Home

by John Shivers

In the market for a home where your dog and kids can enjoy the great outdoors? Check out the property located on three acres± at 35 Flying Ranch Drive #1 south of Clayton. How about a home where your large family or many friends can sleep and chill comfortably? This four-bedroom, two-story home on Flying Ranch Drive off Rickman Airfield Road is definitely one to check out. And if you also need a place where your private aircraft can have all the perks of home, plus easy access to the wild blue yonder right outside your door, then this home demands your attention. Talk about the best of all worlds, this house answers that criteria. And it accomplishes this with nary a cookie cutter in sight. It’s a case of custom squares itself with a design that you’ll find nowhere else. If this whets your curiosity, look no further than this unique merger of industrial, contemporary, rustic, and high as the sky architectural creativity. Think loft meets mountain lodge, nestled on a valley floor, surrounded by mountains with four-season views, remote, yet so convenient to town. Just call it a home/hangar. Or would that be a hangar/home, because where else can you find the fuselage of a BD-5 aircraft hanging from the ceiling of the great room? The wide open space, with floating dual kitchen islands, a full complement of highend appliances, centered in the great room, equates into convenient everyday living. The place is big enough to hold a dance! Large windows offer a beautiful view of the pond and the “talkative” stream that meanders through the property. When there’s snow on the ground, the vista takes on those exceptional qualities so quintessential to a Rabun winter day. Inside, reclaimed barn board and complementary finishes harken to the home’s location inside Big Creek Flying Ranch, and set the stage for some really good living on both the ground and in the air. This is a home designed for multiple needs. The master suite includes a private sitting room, a walk-in closet, and an oversize bath with spa-like qualities and a sauna shower. A second floor guest bedroom and bath includes a loft area overlooking the great room. This loft opens onto another loft in the hangar that connects to a really private guest suite. This set of rooms opens to a second-floor outdoor deck overlooking the magical wooded setting, the fire pit and outside patio. This suite includes a bath and a large office. You don’t need the office? Then make it into a fourth bedroom, or a craft or hobby room. The 42-foot by 48-foot hangar, enough space to easily accommodate two aircraft and the many tools and “toys” that go with plane ownership, includes a 13-foot by 42-foot hangar door for easy coming and going to the airstrip. A separate garage/workshop with workbench, a parts inventory room, laundry room and storage area complete this pilot-central space. Adding to the livability factor is the screened porch opening off the great room. There’s also a 510± square foot greenhouse built on a stone base, and a climate-controlled 24-foot by 24-foot craft / hobby / gardening building, with attached equipment garage and vehicle shed. Instant hot water and a generator for those occasional winter power outages add yet another check to the plus column for this great retreat, with the added privacy of a gated community. Are you up for a look-see at this phenomenal home with direct connection to the skies of Rabun County? Contact the Poss Realty Team at the office at 706-746-5962, and ask about MLS #8852788.

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Holistic MOUNTAIN MARKET A Dream Come True for All of US!


by Tracy McCoy

ome of us get a job and we just work it till retirement while others move from one profession to another looking for what fulfills them. Many people go to work each day and look at it as a job, they are unhappy and unfulfilled but stay for any number of reasons. Then there’s Dana McFarland, she is one of the few people I know with the courage to take a leap of faith and land on her feet and take off running!

Dana McFarland

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After spending six years working in the medical industry Dana felt that helping patients consisted of more than scheduling their NEXT visit. She wanted to help them reduce their visits, to feel better without pharmaceuticals, to offer alternatives to traditional treatments. The idea ruminated in her mind for a while. One night Dana and her husband Mitch were listening to a podcast that inspired her to say the words “I am going to open the store.” Always the supportive husband, Mitch responded “What store?” and Dana proceeded to share her dream with her husband. Not sure what his response would be she was not surprised when he came along side her and applauded her boldness and idea for a health food

and wellness store. She had already peeked in the window of the location she had in mind and the idea for Holistic Mountain Market began taking shape. Fast forward to mid November, after much hard work and effort, Mitch has taken his wife’s vision and together they made it reality. The doors opened and it’s been a whirlwind since. I, for one, take a plethora of supplements and so I was ecstatic when Dana told me what she had planned and I am betting you will be excited too. Holistic Mountain Market is our community’s health and wellness store. The shelves are lined with some of the finest herbs, vitamins, tinctures, ointments, teas, fermented foods and drinks that money can buy. Dana is very knowledgeable about what natural, God made ingredients can do for the human body and she is exactly where she was created to be. She has stepped into the place where she can best serve her community. When I visited the market for our interview we settled comfortably by the front window seated by fresh growing herbs. Dana took me from the first shelf to the last explaining each manufacturer and their product line and why she chose it for her customers and what benefits can be seen from the use of each product. What I witnessed was not just extensive understanding of her product lines, it was a passion for what this could mean for you and me. “I try to provide organic products when I can. I would estimate that 80-90% of the products in my store are organic.” A word often overused and misunderstood, organic is important because it means January 2021 - GML 53

that chemical processes are minimal in the manufacture of the food or supplement. The process of manufacturing supplements is as important to their effectiveness as the ingredients themselves. Bio-available is a new word we hear and that is key because if you can not absorb the vitamin or supplement you are taking they are not as effective as they could be. Dana strives to offer her customers products that she takes or would take herself. She has searched for local and regional companies who source and process whole foods and plants in such a way that they “do your body good”. Maybe you have met or heard of Stephen Sumner. Stephen is a Mycologist and he grows mushrooms and creates a cold brew rich with Reishi and Turkey Tail mushrooms. The drink called Hyphae is a ready to drink medicinal tincture. Research suggests that mushrooms have many benefits to the human body. It is impossible to eat enough to reap these benefits so a daily dose of Hyphae does the job much more efficiently. I bet you know Jimmy Addis and if not you should. His honey is some of the area’s best! Then there is Christine Major who takes organically sourced ingredients and blends her own medicinal teas. They include a variety of flowers, leaves, fruits and herbs blended with different teas to create Garden and Forage Teas. Believing that it is as important what you put on your body as it is what you put in your body, Dana welcomed HollyBeth Anderson’s organic skincare line. CBD products that address both outside (ointments) and inside (gums, drops, oils) by Georgia Hemp are also available at Holistic Mountain Market. Dana has seen the benefits of CBD for arthritis within her own family and has been astounded at the positive response to the products. Woodstock, Georgia based Ancient Awakenings has a line of Kefir, Kombucha and Cultured Vegetables that make consuming probiotics not only possible but beneficial in ways a capsule might not be. The story behind Ancient Awakenings live foods is one Dana can and will share with you. Additional lines of top-shelf supplements including North American Herb and Spice, known for enhancing immune response to viruses and everyday stressors. Natural Stacks is another company Dana trusts that has found innovative ways to offer a better working brain and we all need that, right? You’ll find a line of Holistic Mountain Market t-shirts and hats created locally at Impressed in Clayton. Local artist Ali Wilkins painted the logo that

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appears behind the counter and has just created a version of her popular 30525 zipcode art for the Westside District which encompasses the businesses located on west Savannah Street. Dana will sell Ali’s Westside District stickers in her store as well. I have saved one of the best things about Dana and Mitch’s store for the last… the smoothies! Behind the counter is a freezer stocked with pre-cut, fresh and frozen bags of vegetables and fruits. In the refrigerator is coconut cream, almond and coconut milk (Nut-pods), and more that goes into the healthiest most palate pleasing smoothies you’ve ever had. All named with a 1980s flavor these smoothies are a meal in itself. True to her nature, Dana sat down with Sam Watson, the chef at Fortify Pi in Clayton to find flavors that complement each other and then she formulated recipes for each smoothie (what do you bet Mitch was the guinea pig). There are the standbys like Mr. Spikoli (Fast Times at Ridgemont High) and then there will always be seasonal recipes that pull from the foods you associate with that holiday (peppermint and chocolate) or season like fresh melons and strawberries. You won’t believe that getting your fruits and veggies could be this easy or this TASTY! You can even drop by and pick up the pre-made recipes to make at home! Dana will be offering online ordering or phone in orders that can be delivered to your car, curbside! The future plans include more quick “grab and take” food offerings for a healthy lunch or supper. Classes to teach us how to best care for our health and possible delivery options within close proximity. For now Dana and Mitch will continue to establish the store as the valuable resource that it is and serve the community. On Saturdays Dana welcomes representatives from some of the brands to offer samples and share information with customers. If you are one of the thousands (like me) who will be changing the way you eat in the new year, Dana says she will have everything you need to begin the Whole 30 plan or one like it. Holistic Mountain Market has just made that healthier lifestyle you’ve been promising yourself or your family not only possible but convenient! In January she will be offering some incentives that can save you a few dollars on your “New Year and New You” plan. So what on earth are you waiting for? Stop or call today your body will thank you! Holistic Mountain Market is located in the Westside District of Clayton at 31 W Savannah St, Clayton, GA 30525. The number to call for info or to order your smoothie is 706-960-9501. Their website in the works but can be found at January 2021 - GML 55

Hannah Jones

Jarrod Coffey 56 GML - January 2021

Adventure Out

The Short Line Trail in Tallulah Gorge State Park by Peter McIntosh


ell 2021 is finally here and there is hope for a better year ahead. Many of us resolve to get out and get more exercise and with that in mind we’re going to revisit one of my favorite places to restart a walking/hiking regimen, the Short Line Trail in Tallulah Gorge State Park. Located across Hwy 441 but still a part of the park, the Short Line Trail is a walking/ biking trail, part of which follows the rail bed of the Tallulah Falls Railway which ran 58 miles from Cornelia, Georgia to Franklin, North Carolina. The railway reached Tallulah Gorge in 1892, spurring the tourism boom, and then reached Clayton in 1905. On this trail you can see the old concrete supports where the railway crossed the Tallulah River. It’s a 2.5 mile loop trail that’s wide, flat and easy to hike. And this article is also a chance to show off the gifted work of the students at the North Georgia Technical College School of Photography. Every fall semester, I have the privilege of speaking to the students about the fundamentals of backcountry photography and I assign them a location to practice these tips and tricks. I’d like to say I’m a really good teacher but

Brooke Ames January 2021 - GML 57

I think it’s more that the NGTC Photo School is a great program and these students are very talented. And an added plus is their caring and knowledgeable professors, Jim Loring and Melissa Henderson. Congratulations to both the students and instructors on a job well done! Enjoy their work and happy hiking! The New Year’s bell has now been rung, here’s my first poem of 2021: Let’s get out and get going, one step at a time. And take a little hike along the Short Line. With the air fresh and crisp, and the skies blue and clearer, Let’s put 2020 in the rear view mirror. Getting there: Tallulah Gorge State Park is located about 12 miles south of Clayton and is accessed via Jane Hurt Yarn Road off of US Hwy 441, just north of the Tallulah Gorge bridge. Tallulah Gorge State Park: Phone: 705-754-7981 North Georgia Technical College School of Photography:

Brianna Townsend

To see more of Peter’s photos of if you have a question or comment:

Desiree Rasor 58 GML - January 2021

Carson Sprinkle

Jessica Eash

"Congratulations to both the students and instructors on a job well done!"

Syara White

Davis White

Sophie Kovitz

Elizabeth Fry January 2021 - GML 59

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