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Stories by Lisa Kelley

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Holiday horror hideout

Classic films sure to scare

Subscriber onlySince downsizing to my little loft in the heart of Bentonville, I've greatly reduced the size of my holiday decor. Whereas once I had a dozen Halloween knick-knacks and 20 Thanksgiving baubles strewn about, I now have a couple -- an iron black cat and a denim pumpkin -- commanding center stage. I think the little buggers stand straighter these days, as though they know they beat out the competition. Continue reading...

Orange you difficult?

Color signals trouble ahead

Subscriber only"I don't care much for the color orange," I randomly blurted to my friend, Karen, as we sauntered through the craft fair booths. "It seems like trouble to me." Continue reading...

The open road

And finding your way home

Subscriber onlyWithout a doubt, I'm a nester. Instead of twigs and leaves, I use embroidered cotton sheets, cozy tufted chairs and hand-stitched quilts. Laptops and cell phones mingle with milk glass and century-old tables. I ride a new hybrid bicycle and drive a 1978 Ford F-100. My nest is a soothing blend of past and present woven in a gentle hope of good things to come. Continue reading...

Dream reveals all

Running naked, changing batteries

Subscriber onlyThis hallway seems vaguely familiar, with institutional green plaster and gray lockers. But it's so dimly lit I can hardly make out the numbers on the doors. That looks like a "7," but I can't be sure. What did my schedule show? Continue reading...

Tuesdays with Art

Friendship cemented over soups, sandwiches

Subscriber only"What does this say," I asked, pointing to a note scribbled in blue ink in his yearbook. Continue reading...

Worth every percent

Eclipse fulfills childhood dream

Subscriber onlyYou can tell a lot about a person by peering into their childhood bedroom. Sunny yellow shelves filled with storybooks and stuffed animals towered above orange shag carpeting in the room that raised me. A built-in desk housed pencils and stationery and the latest scribblings of unfinished poems and stories. The window was perpetually open, allowing a steady breeze to drift in from the valley. On warm summer nights, I could be found listening to both kinds of music -- country and western -- surrounded by walls drenched in an odd blend of girly trinkets, pithy quotes and fighter jet posters. I wanted to be pretty and smart and a test pilot and marry Magnum, P.I., who I hoped would move stateside because NASA wasn't based in Hawaii. Continue reading...

Dog's nose knows

Without saying a word humans say so much

Subscriber onlyEDITOR'S NOTE: Lisa Kelley is away this week. Writing in her stead is her dog, Baxter. Continue reading...

Sole-searching Southern wedding

Couple doesn’t get far from country roots

Subscriber onlyIf the shoe fits Continue reading...

Lightning bugs, manicured lawns, glowing orbs

A bit of country in the city

Subscriber onlyIf a man walks in the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer. But if he spends his days as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the earth bald before her time, he is deemed an industrious and enterprising citizen. Continue reading...

Human language exhausting

Sick habits go ‘nucular’

Subscriber onlyIt's inconceivable Continue reading...

Living beyond the edge

‘You’re so gonna break something’

Subscriber onlyI remember Skate City being a place where the cool kids scissor-crossed their skates and zoomed passed me while I stayed along the edge of the rink, trying to remain vertical. The times I managed to go backward were done by inertia and gravity, not by choice. I looked like a go-cart in the Daytona 500, but I didn't care. I was happy to be there. Continue reading...

On big hair, friendship, forgivness

Celebrating Easter southern style

Subscriber onlyMost Easters of late, I've traveled to spend time with my Uncle Ronnie. But because I'd just been there for the farm sale, I decided to stay put this Easter Sunday. I mapped my day with church and two separate gatherings at beloved friends' houses, where I'm always welcomed as a baby sister, crazy aunt or second cousin once removed. Continue reading...

John Deere beauty

A countrified fountaion of youth

Subscriber onlyThe first Saturday of this month brought the 43rd annual FFA Farm Sale to the Clay County Fairgrounds in Piggott. I'd texted Uncle Ronnie during the week to see if he'd taken a sneak peak. Continue reading...

Head down, eyes averted, don't confess

Forth time is charm

Subscriber onlyMy driver's license came up for renewal this month. When it was renewed four years ago, an elderly clerk kindly said I needn't have a new picture taken because I looked the same as I had four years prior. This year, a pubescent clerk took one look at me and pointed toward the camera. I took solace in the fact that his badge read, "Trainee," and he'd sent everyone ahead of me to get a new picture, too. Or maybe it was the fact my photo looked like a 1980s glamour shot, and I ... didn't. Continue reading...

Yesterday, when I was young

Hee Haw icon comes to town

Subscriber onlyThe audience heaved a collective sigh at seeing the performer shimmy his way to a seat at center stage. Gone were the trademark mutton chops and youthful face-filling smile. Gone were the limber fingers that tore up banjos, guitars and fiddles to the point where actors sharing scenes with him broke character in awe when he played. All had been replaced by a frail old man buried beneath a brown coat and hat. At seeing the audience, he tapped his cane on the floor and flashed a grin as the crowd rose with welcoming applause. Continue reading...

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