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LaTonya Dunn

Stories by LaTonya

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Handmade items keep on giving year after year

The holiday season is upon us once again, and we are reminded that this is the time when our focus should be on those things that really matter.

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Words should be handled with care

If you don't have anything nice to say then don't say anything at all."How often have you heard that one?

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Learning gratitude has a price

For many, this year has been full of bumps in the road, twists and turns, deadends and detours, but you are still moving. That's something to be thankful for.

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Step back, take a long look before making a decision

Sometimes, it becomes necessary in our lives that we step back from some things.

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Warning light no time to trade in

Service engine soon."Oh, no," I thought as I stared at that illuminated message in the dash.My mind raced to figure out what might have caused this warning.

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Take ordeals a day at a time

Take it one day at a time.We hear this sometimes when we are going through a tough ordeal. It reminds us that looking too far ahead may bring about unnecessary worry and stress and that often the key to our sanity is to take things in stride-"one day at a time."

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Journey is part of achieving

When my brother, sister and I were kids, to eat a delicious home-cooked meal whenever we wanted was expected. Mom would cook every day and all we had to do was eat.

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Education system fails many students

I wish that the educational system allowed for greater development of students' interests and natural abilities.

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Child abuser a false man of God

Every Sunday morning the gospel music would be blaring from the TV, but not drowning out that dreaded wake up call, "Rise and shine, give God the glory!"

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We are silent, but not immune

We are not immune to our parents getting a divorce or to the fights that led up to it. We are not immune to the fact that we grew up with only one parent in our homes.

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Don't cloud your 'you' view

Have you ever taken the time to celebrate yourself right where you are, for all that you are, just as you are?
Not surprisingly, many of us do not often.
LaTonya Dunn, features columnist

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Experiences don't just come in black and white

Imagine what a society might be if the people who made up that society could enter into constructive conversations rather than the destructive debates that happen most often?

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Gift of opportunity has no warranty

I share with you often about the things I've learned in this life. One more to add to the list is that time gives us the gift of opportunity that is only retrieved upon death, except, we do not know how much time is ultimately left.

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Hiding behind masks erodes family

If not now, then when will we begin to unmask the enemy of ignorance and hypocrisy that continues to erode our families?We are dying both mentally and emotionally because we refuse to embrace therapy as a meaningful and often necessary component of our internal healing.

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Emptying 'trash' clears perspective

What do we do when we realize that the trash in our home has gotten too full or when we realize that it smells bad?

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Life the greatest inspiration

What inspires you?I am asked that question quite often. I've always replied in a number of different ways because it is so difficult to pinpoint just one thing in particular that inspires me. Sometimes it depends on some experience I've had or someone's personal story.

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Relationships take teamwork

A good relationship is a partnership where both parties are willing to do what is necessary for the good of the team.

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Keep problems away from the inner circle

Summer is practically here and you might have plans to take the family to an amusement park of some kind.I remember being at amusement parks and city fairs as a kid. The lines would sometimes be long, and only a set number of riders were permitted on a given ride at a time.

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Free yourself, cut the strings

Cut the strings.Don't be someone's puppet all of your life.Do you find yourself responding or reacting negatively every time someone says something about you or to you that you dislike?

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Never give up on yourself

What would you say to your younger self? Most of us could probably think of a long list of things that we would say. That list would be based on the belief that "if you knew then what you know now, you would make some different decisions in life.

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Future holds promise as new doors open

The letter to the graduate:Do not pawn your values. You might find that it wasn't worth the trade you made. Stay true to who you are at your core. Your survival will come down to knowing who that is.

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People have the tools to improve life

Do you know what's in your toolbox?Sometimes you have to use what you've got to create what you want.We all have at least a couple of tools to work with, but often the problem is that we don't even know that they are there. Sometimes, though, the problem is more severe. That is, we know that they are there, but we don't know how to use them.

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Psst ... rumors can be hurtful

Psst ... rumors can be hurtfulHave you ever been the target of a rumor? Do you remember how it made you feel?

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Concentrate on the positives in life leave the negatives behind

Even if your financial bank account leaves much to be desired, you have to remember to make plenty of deposits into your "self-bank" account.

Gratitude is a life-changing vehicle

Gratitude is the attitude from which all good things come. In times where there is financial hardship and opportunities are limited, it can be difficult to stay encouraged without gratitude.

Progress starts with a single step forward

There is an old Chinese proverb that says, "A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step." It reminds us that regardless of the distance between where we are and where we would like to be, none of us can get there standing still.

Make the most of your extra daylight time this year

"Spring forward and Fall backward." That is how we remember how to turn our clocks as a part of Daylight Saving Time.

Friends don't let friends miss signs

Growing up, the street lights coming on were the warning for my siblings and I that it was time to drop whatever it was that we were doing and make a mad dash to be within viewing distance of our front door by the time that our mother was standing there.

Apologies relieve life stress

You know that you were wrong. You realize that you made a mistake. It occurred to you that "this time," someone else was right or that they were telling the truth.

Act to give your loved ones peace of mind

It can be difficult to talk about death or dying. Oftentimes such talk makes us feel uncomfortable, as if somehow by doing so we summon the "death angel" unto us.

Purge things from life that make you sick

About a week ago now, in the middle of the night, I found myself not feeling well. I could not get to sleep because I was so uncomfortable. My stomach was flipping and turning and I felt extremely nauseated.

Life's tests are taken throughout each day's journey

Close your books. Take out a sheet of paper and a pen or pencil. Put your name and date at the top and number your paper 1-10. You have a pop quiz."

Do not be affected by those who would mock you

In this country, there is a lot of frustration about the slow recovery of the economy.

You should know which trees are bearing fruit

As a child, I remember hearing the older folk say, "You'll know the tree by the fruit it bears."

It just makes sense to take part in this year's census

It just makes sense to take part in this year's censusLift your voices and be heard."I urged you to do this during the last presidential election. I talked about how we could no longer sit on the sidelines and steadily hope for the change that only we ourselves, individually and collectively can bring about.