Mark Ballard

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  • MARK BALLARD

    Life lessons from our furry friends

    I was beginning to fear for my life. Georgie, our most-of-the-time sweet, yet sometimes not, always entertaining Chihuahua has had a personality change. If he were green instead of white with a brown spot here and there, I’d be sure his little seven-pound body had been secretively invaded...

  • MARK BALLARD

    Creative Thinking: Actor’s suicide brings up painful memories

    Last week in my column, I wrote about how memories can be triggered by certain scents. All of the examples I gave were happy memories. Most of my memories are happy ones but, as we all know, life is not always pretty and perfect. I try to keep my unpleasant memories buried below the happy ones so...

  • MARK BALLARD

    BALLARD: Scents recall fond memories of loved ones

    Somewhere deep within the chambers of our minds, memories from our past reside. Most of them are happy memories that just hang out until something causes us to recall them.

  • MARK BALLARD

    Learning to breathe in my own way

    “Just breathe!” Debra always said to whoever was going through any sort of physical or mental pain. Because pain loves company, it always made me want to slap her just so I could say it back to her. Debra learned how to breathe through the pain during her days of natural childbirth.

  • MARK BALLARD

    Building memories out of tree houses

    ‘We could put it right there,” I said to Daddy, pointing up to a high branch of a very large pecan tree in our backyard. We both stared up into the stately tree, squinting to avoid the sun. You would have thought we were about to erect a grand hotel or some other elaborate building...

  • MARK BALLARD

    Sunflowers always bring smiles

    Looking across the field of sunflowers, I stood in awe. There, in front of me, as far as the eye could see, were hundreds of bright, yellow sunflowers. It was as if the heavens had opened up dropping a huge and spectacular flower arrangement into an otherwise ordinary field of dirt and Georgia clay...

  • MARK BALLARD

    Ballard: Taking a trip down memory lane

    Our minds are amazing things. Within our brains, we have the capacity to store a lifetime of memories. Like sponges, our minds soak them all up and then time decides which ones we’ll keep.

  • MARK BALLARD

    Storm leads to chance to be still

    The sun burned hot against the blue sky like a spotlight above a stage. It was muggy hot -- the kind of hot where your clothes stick to you as if your skin has been covered with a thin layer of glue.

  • MARK BALLARD

    Creative Thinking: Finding answers isn’t always easy

    The other day someone used a word I’d never heard. I certainly didn’t know its meaning, but bluffed my way through the rest of the conversation as if I did. As soon as I had a chance, I went to my iPad and carefully typed in the way I thought the word would be spelled.

  • MARK BALLARD

    BALLARD: Going against tide of sensationalism

    The other day I was traveling up Interstate 75 to Atlanta.

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