(Howard Performing Arts Center, Michigan) Guest Cello Soloist Lara Turner composes herself before absolutely nailing German composer Friedrich Gulda’s wildly original Concerto for Cello and Wind Orchestra on April 23 at the Andrews University Wind Symphony Spring Concert. Brava, Lara. You rock!

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Decked Out

Jacqui’s been on deck a lot since we had the deck cleaned and stained.

“I stand out better with the new, lighter color.”

“But I still like my perch at the end of the deck on top of the railroad ties. You have definitely made the deck cat-friendly. Now leave me to my mice.”

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Easy Street

(Lakeside, Michigan) This is the kind of road we like to ride.

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The Owl and the Pussy-Cat by Edward Lear

Jacqui wanted us to share her favorite poem with you. It was our childhood favorite as well. Enjoy!

Source: The Owl and the Pussy-Cat by Edward Lear

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The Oak Lawn Tornado

When I took this picture of Paw Paw, Michigan in a recent rainstorm, I knew it reminded me of something. Yes, the Oak Lawn Tornado of April 21, 1967. I am a survivor, and I will always remember that day.

(Oak Lawn, Illinois) I was washing cars after school for Jack Thompson Oldsmobile on 95th Street on the afternoon of Friday, April 21, 1967 when my boss said, “You’d better head for home.” We had absolutely no business, and we had been looking out the back door at the greenest sky either of us had ever, ever seen.  Okay.  So I hopped in my parents’ big red Ford wagon and had no sooner turned east on 95th Street when life as I knew it stopped.  Came to a complete halt.  That big old hunk of Detroit steel was suddenly levitating, and though I had cranked all the windows tightly closed, hail was driving through the seams and pelting me in the face. What the?!?  Then I looked to my left and saw it—the Oak Lawn Tornado raging its destructive path on a northeasterly heading along Southwest Highway.  Forget about Wizard of Oz, this was the real thing, and it had just exacted a frightening death toll not at all far from where I was parked in my levitating station wagon.  I thought I was done for.  I was not going to live to be 17 on May 7 after all. Sweet 16 and out!  So be it.  But then, as all bad things do, it passed, eventually making its way out into Lake Michigan off the Museum of Science and Industry where I had witnessed the arrival of the U-505 some years before.  When all was finally clear, I thanked the Lord for my life and motored gingerly home to nearby Beverly where I told my family that I had just survived a tornado and that we should pray for those who had not.

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Age-appropriate Exercise

I have entered an age in which a slow ride on a comfortable bike is all one needs of an afternoon.


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Prairie Perspective

(Harbert, Michigan) I was hoping to get a photo or two of some Blue-winged Teal swimming about a flooded field, but they swam out of range, so I got this perspective from Prairie Road instead. I’ll take it.

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