Part I: History, what’s in it for you and me?

Part I: History, what’s in it for you and me?

by Jennifer N. Fenwick, former American History teacher and author Image courtesy of Shutterstock First, we ARE history. From our genetic make-up, to the technologies we use, to the things we value and believe in, we are living products of history. Understanding the linkages between past and present is absolutely basic for a good understanding [...]

HOW CAN THEY DEFEND WHAT THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND?

HOW CAN THEY DEFEND WHAT THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND?

Jennifer N. Fenwick, former American History teacher, author, In the Eye of the Storm American History is our worst subject. Our students do not know who they are as Americans.- Dr. William Bennett, author, America: The Last Best Hope Why do I have to learn history? What’s it got to do with me? As an [...]

The Destroyer of Freedom

The Destroyer of Freedom

by JN Fenwick, author and former American History teacher Turn on your television. It’s there. In the streets of our cities. Seeping into the very fabric of our Nation. In the guise of shining a light on oppression, an oppression it manifested, not to create any true change, or to shed light on any true [...]

This Nation Wasn’t Founded by Heroes

This Nation Wasn’t Founded by Heroes

by JN Fenwick, author, former American History teacher This nation wasn’t founded by heroes. It was founded by men who were human and flawed, but who sought to create something better than themselves. Constitutional Convention, Philadelphia, 1787 | Image courtesy of Shutterstock This nation wasn’t defended by heroes. It was defended by brothers and sisters, [...]

A FIGHT TO PRESERVE THE UNION

A FIGHT TO PRESERVE THE UNION

by JN Fenwick, author and former American History teacher In the spirit of the history teacher I am and always will be, this current climate of unrest, of the attempts to dismantle our nation’s past, both literally and figuratively, of the current threat to the very life and breadth of all we are, all we [...]

We Hold These Truths

We Hold These Truths

JN Fenwick, author and former American History teacher On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The culmination of months of debate and revisions, formal adoption of the document was the official beginning of America’s fight for independence from Great Britain. Prior to this date, independence [...]

THE WILLFUL DESTRUCTION OF AMERICA

THE WILLFUL DESTRUCTION OF AMERICA

by JN Fenwick | Author and former U.S. History teacher | Feature Image by David Brickner| Shutterstock “The U.S. Constitution states that American citizens have the right to free speech and the right of the people to peaceful assembly and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. However, looting, destroying public and private [...]

I Wonder if They Know?

I Wonder if They Know?

JN Fenwick, former U.S. History teacher, author, and editor In the Eye of the Storm and In the Aftermath of the Storm All my life I’ve been a lover of history. When I was a girl, historical biographies were among my favorite books. I’d get lost in the past, but I learned as well. I [...]

I’ve Been Thinking of a Way

I’ve Been Thinking of a Way

by Nichole Fenwick I've been thinking of a way to say the things that get misunderstood. The things that go undetected. The unspoken sorrows that, yes, are a few years old, but burn so deep, they entrap me in this cyclical sadness. This sadness that surfaces year after year around the time it originally occurred. [...]

Timeless Treasures

Timeless Treasures

JN Fenwick, author, In the Eye of the Storm | In the Aftermath of the Storm A room without books is like a body without a soul. Cicero Image by Pixabay Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello, has always been one of my favorite places to visit; especially, his library. Standing in the dim room, surrounded by [...]

Prayers from the Foxhole

Prayers from the Foxhole

by JN Fenwick, Author, In the Eye of the Storm, In the Aftermath of the Storm, and Four Weeks: A Journey from Darkness How life taught me the value of spiritually walking with God daily, rather than simply seeking Him in times of need. Image by Pixabay In moments of crisis we instinctively and without [...]

Chautauqua: Working Together

Chautauqua: Working Together

by Cynthia McCauley, director and contributing author, In the Aftermath of the Storm Chautauqua is an Iroquois word meaning, ‘working together.’  Founded on the premise of learning by working together in service to others, Chautauqua Learn and Serve Charter School strives to emulate, on a pocket-sized scale, our distinguished parent organization, the Chautauqua Institution near [...]

Imperfectly Whole

Imperfectly Whole

by Jennifer N. Fenwick, author, Four Weeks: A Journey from Darkness Please know if this book has found its way to you, God's peace, passion, and power of love is a gift for the taking.Laura McManus, LCSW At the age of 19, my life changed in an unimaginable way. In a way that altered me [...]

Mercy Chefs: The Mission of Chef Gary and Ann LeBlanc

Mercy Chefs: The Mission of Chef Gary and Ann LeBlanc

by Linda Artman, contributing author, In the Eye of the Storm and In the Aftermath of the Storm A few days after Hurricane Michael, Mercy Chefs arrived in Panama City. They've returned many times since to provide meals and spread hope throughout the storm-battered region. Photo by Linda Artman The name suggests that food is [...]

Summer Showers

Summer Showers

by Sandi Klug-Lard, contributing author, In the Aftermath of the Storm "I found a massive dead rat in the shed," my husband said by way of greeting. Jesse stood in the doorway leading to our backyard, his black hair wet with humidity and sweat.  "That's disgusting." I crinkled my nose.  "Come look at it." He [...]

Michael’s Angels

Michael’s Angels

by Tracy Johnstone It started with a Facebook post 100 days after the storm. The post read like a gospel invitation.  An invitation to step forward; to take a step away from the chaos of recovery. This was a salvation call for each of us as women and for the community that we all call home.  Tracy [...]

The Wedding Dress

by Dr. Amy Boe, contributing writer, In the Aftermath of the Storm: Stories of Hope and Healing. In the Eye of the Storm, published in January, 2019 tells the story of Hurricane Michael's brutal landfall along the Panhandle of Florida on October 10, 2018. A collection of poetry, stories, and images from survivors and residents, [...]

Not Enough Buckets

by Teri Hord, contributing writer, In the Aftermath of the Storm: Stories of Hope and Healing. In the Eye of the Storm, published in January, 2018 tells the story of Hurricane Michael's brutal landfall along the Panhandle of Florida on October 10, 2018. A collection of poetry, stories, and images from survivors and residents, In [...]

One Year Later

One Year Later

Hurricane Michael, One Year Later It's been one year.One year since that day.That day we'll never forget. Our world was destroyed.Torn from its foundation.Inexplicably altered.We emerged to an apocalypse. So complete in its devastation,we immediately understood,we'd never be the same.Its been one year.One year since that day.That day that challenged us.In ways we never imagined.Our [...]

The Forgotten Coast

The Forgotten Coast

As Dorian approaches, media outlets are reporting it as "an unprecedented storm in Florida," and that Dorian "would be the strongest storm to hit Florida since 1992." Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock As I look around the barren landscape and notice the still clinging blue tarps, the vacant lots where homes and businesses used to [...]

In the Aftermath of the Storm

In the Aftermath of the Storm

When Hurricane Micheal slammed into our cities last October, he took more with him than just our trees, our businesses, our homes. He took pieces of us. Memories we’d planted long ago. The world outside has moved on. But we, we are still living in the aftermath. Like the many cities destroyed before us by [...]

We’re ALL Guilty of This, Myself Included.

We’re ALL Guilty of This, Myself Included.

In this age of social media, and instantaneous sharing, we sometimes share too much. And not necessarily in ways designed to build each other up. Instead we use the platforms, from the safety of perceived obscurity, to publicly condemn, rebuke, and chastise people whose opinions and/or choices differ from our own.  We hide behind our religion, [...]

The Lost Art of Critical Thinking

The Lost Art of Critical Thinking

I very rarely, if ever post anything that might be construed as political in nature. I find that those thoughts and opinions are usually best kept to oneself. However, in the current climate of chaos and noise and the constant barrage of talking heads and talking over one another, I was reminded of the numerous [...]

Let Freedom Ring!

Let Freedom Ring!

I taught American History for fifteen years, but have loved and studied history all my life. Some days I get discouraged when I watch the news and see how much of what was fought for by past generations is now being diluted and distilled in modern times. Yes, I do believe in progress. But not [...]

Has the Electoral College Outlived its Purpose?

Has the Electoral College Outlived its Purpose?

Perhaps the Electoral College is a victim of its own success. Most of the time it shapes American politics in ways that are beneficial but hard to see. Its effects become newsworthy only when a candidate and his or her political party lose a hard-fought and narrowly decided election.Trent England | Imprimis, June 2019 In [...]

Raindrops and Buttons

Raindrops and Buttons

I love the sound of rain. However, the sound of rain on a tin or metal roof is something else altogether. It brings to mind childhood afternoons with my Nana. My Nana, Mary Murphy Chaknis, was born in 1911 in County Cork, Ireland. Her family was poor, and by the time Nana had reached her [...]

What It’s Like to Live in the Aftermath of a Category 5 Hurricane

What It’s Like to Live in the Aftermath of a Category 5 Hurricane

Keep your head up Panama City. A feat that has proven much harder as the weeks since Michael have turned into months. Image by Sharon Owens There have only been four. Only four recorded Atlantic storms have maintained category five strength as they barreled inland. The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, with its maximum sustained [...]

Teaching: A Two-way Path to Lifelong Learning

Teaching: A Two-way Path to Lifelong Learning

Teachers are expected to reach unattainable goals with inadequate tools. The miracle is that at times they accomplish this impossible task. Haim Ginott I left teaching in 2008. As the years pass, I realize that I left a bit of myself there too. In the lives of all the students I taught and in all [...]

The Dangerous Pursuit of Rewriting History

The Dangerous Pursuit of Rewriting History

Washington, Jefferson, T. Roosevelt, and Lincoln; the unwavering image of Mount Rushmore. “Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. [...]

Logophile Life

Logophile Life

"The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library."~ Albert Einstein. My students used to tell me I was a nerd. I’d laugh and thank them, taking it as a compliment. I wasn’t ashamed of the fact that I loved books, and words, and writing and research, and well, [...]

Partisan Politics Have Left Us to Wonder “Is Anybody Out There?”

Partisan Politics Have Left Us to Wonder “Is Anybody Out There?”

“Six months since Michael, much of the Florida Panhandle is still a shambles. And residents of the most affected areas feel largely forgotten by the public and the federal government, which has not yet passed a federal disaster relief bill for areas affected by Hurricane Michael.”Emily Atkin, The New Republic | April 19, 2019 Six [...]

Category 5

Category 5

We didn’t need the confirmation. We already knew. We felt the devastating winds. Saw with our own eyes, all the storm surge swept away. We’ve lived in the aftermath. Without help. Without relief. Relentlessly. Since that day. We’ve keenly felt the deaths. The catastrophic devastation. The destruction to our homes and cities. Our livelihoods. Our [...]

Hurricane Michael: Five Things the World Should Know

Hurricane Michael: Five Things the World Should Know

“Everyone here has a story of loss they struggle to describe and recovery they cannot yet comprehend.” 1. There was no way to adequately prepare. We'd done this before, many of us, more than once; prepared for the possibility of a hurricane visiting us during the Season. We were used to Summer ushering in, not [...]