Barbara Kellam-Scott

Barbara Kellam-Scott

Writer, reader, (Presbyterian Church USA) elder, hoper-in and prayer-for Shalom. Information manager for a quarter century as freelancer, staff science writer, and now creative non/fiction writer and preacher. Lucky to live in the bears' back yard.
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BA, Ramapo College of NJ; graduate coursework Princeton Univ, Newark School of Theology, Princeton Theological Seminary. Book publishing from el-hi to sci/tech; award-winning telecomm science writer; wide-ranging freelancer; research interviewer; etc.


Relationship is what makes me human, ignites my soul, opens me to the divine.



Displaying Results 1 - 60 (of 60) for All Content
  • Can’t Buy This Love — It Adopts You
    My aunt couldn’t leave such a sweet boy to make his own way in the world. And when she died, he braved a ride of 500 miles to face birds that came to him in the treetops.
  • Hiking at the Top of New Jersey
    Between High Point and ridges developed for skiing, the Wallkill River begins its peculiar journey north amid a variety of hiking, nature, and water experiences.
  • Book Review: "Cathedral of the Wild" by Boyd Varty
    The third book, from the second generation of the family of Londolozi Game Reserve in South Africa, asks me to trust the guide to know where he’s going, and I’m not quite satisfied.
  • Not Nearly Enough from Governor Christie
    Living out on the other side of the state, I’m mostly free of concern for GW Bridge traffic. But we all have the same governor, and he owes us all a better explanation of the September Ft. Lee farce — and more respect in general.
  • Our Mostly Successful, Low-Cost, Low-Key Hippie Christmas Wedding
    In 1974, weddings themselves were not exactly fashionable. To have ours in my home church two days after Christmas seemed to let us out of a lot of the expensive processes and decision-making, and it almost worked.
  • This Year it Snowed in Newtown
    Snow brings silence. Snow sighs of peace. Snow promises fun and outside voices, giggles and shrieks of joy. Someone will reach for a hand that hasn’t been reachable for a year. But the way that hand felt can never be totally lost.
  • First Person: Sandy Steps Aside for Winter Storm Athena
    We weren't included in the coverage of Hurricane Sandy, and that was OK — few of us had lost our homes entirely. But it was no fun being last on the list for power restoration, which also means water from our wells. And now there would be snow.
  • Power Struggle
    For 12 years and about 50 weeks, I’ve been saying I came here for dark and quiet. I'm getting one, not the other, and the hard way.
  • Book Review: "Into the Forest" a Novel by Jean Hegland (Bantam 1996)
    I'm not sure how a 241-page novel can seem so long and empty, except for fear of a rich environment that the characters have willfully ignored for their lifetimes.
  • What Happens in Cataract Surgery?
    I was a little creeped out, but mostly curious, about what I might see during eye surgery. According to my doctor, I'm not the only one.
  • The "Removable Hard Drive" that Changed My Computing Life
    Hardly recognizable as a laptop today, and Apple Duo and its dock introduced me to portable computing, a relationship that looks to last a lifetime.
  • Book Review: "Standing at the Crossroads," by Charles Davis (2011, Permanent Press)
    Give the author and his narrator a chance to show how simplicity can provide refuge from an unbearable reality.
  • Book Review: The Madonnas of Leningrad by Debra Dean (2006, William Morrow)
    Marina finds beauty not only to sustain her through the siege of Leningrad, but also through the end of her life, in western comfort except for the dementia.
  • First-Bike Lessons from My Big Brother
    As a girl in the protective 1960s, I had some extra obstacles to overcome in learning to ride a bicycle. My most dramatic lesson, however, cost my brother his dignity, our Mother's wrath, and more than a little skin.
  • The 'Antiques Roadshow' Experience
    We spent almost as much as our total appraised values, and probably won't be on TV, but we've seen 'Roadshow' from the inside, and we'd go back in a minute.
  • The Appalachian Trail is Right Next Door
    Though the Jersey "Highlands" never get much higher than 1000 feet, this section makes a welcome break for through hikers and an accessible joy for locals and day-trippers.
  • It's Always a New Grand Canyon
    I first saw the Grand Canyon through the eyes of my 16-year-old son, but I wasn't prepared for the difference when I saw it from the North Rim for myself '" and neither was my son.
  • Best Dessert to Serve or Share: Ozark Pudding
    The aroma of almond draws everyone in range, and the apples keep them. It's the dessert everyone asks me about and watches for at pot-lucks.
  • Book Review: "The Tower, the Zoo, and the Tortoise" by Julia Stuart (2010 Doubleday)
    At first glance, the novel had everything to offer me, an anglophile, a fan of zoos, and particularly a lover of tortoises.
  • Best Thing I Learned from Korean Friends: Kong Jarban
    I met these black beans as a condiment in Korean restaurants, and was thrilled when my friends told me how to make them. I was even more thrilled when I used them in western-style canapes and my Korean friends approved.
  • Reorienting a Life Lived to the Next Technology
    I couldn't believe my grandparents slept through the moon landing! But is it so far from my being satisfied with an old CRT TV and a VCR?
  • The Travel Nightmare of Almost Understanding
    I thought the language immersion would come at the end of the train ride, in the language I had studied. But the people with whom I couldn't communicate understood my plight much better than those who could have talked with me and didn't.
  • Ten Favorite Books I Read with My Kids
    Picture books with just a few choice words can set the stage for a lifetime of reading, and writing, and living joyfully.
  • Personal Cell Phones Are like Any Do Not Call
    One of the latest panic-spreading e-mails warns us to "protect yourself [and your] friends-neighbors ... from telemarketers." It contains mostly unnecessarily fearful and erroneous information.
  • Celery Seed Puts the Summer in Potato Salad
    All things celery add a green, summery flavor to dishes, but the flavor's most concentrated when, as in this family recipe, it comes from the concentrated see and is given some time to develop.
  • Wallkill River NWR in Northwest New Jersey - Part 1, the Wood Duck Trail
    The Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge in northwestern NJ shelters a unique combination of wetlands, grasslands, and forests - and their inhabitants. Tour just one of the easy trails in the Refuge for now and come back for more later.
  • Health Insurance Dilemmas
    I shouldn't have to be making decisions about my health care, or my husband about when to retire, on issues of the cost of health insurance.
  • Yes, I Love My 2007 Ford Escape
    If I had a quarter for every time I've been flagged down in a parking lot and asked how I like my Ford Escape (this or its predecessor), I'll bet I could pay for one of my nearly 400-mile fillups.
  • Yahoo! Style Guide: There Are Rules and There Are Rules
    In third grade, grammar may have seemed a teacher's power trip. Now it's time to recognize the power that consistent use of the language adds to your ability to get your content read and understood to mean what you intended.
  • Yahoo! Style Guide: Writing for the World
    The purpose of writing is communication, and communication connects writer to reader only when both use the same words the same way. That depends on the writer's sensitivity to readers' feelings and self-identification.
  • How Pets Teach Us About Life -- and Death
    Penny the calico cat died at about 4AM, but she left invaluable gifts of presence in the now with her lover of 16 years.
  • Book Review: Making Rounds with Oscar, by David Dosa, M.D. (Feb. 2010 Hyperion)
    David Dosa used an extraordinary feline to suck me into learning what life is like as death approaches through dementia. I only wish he'd learned more about cats.
  • Book Review: Letter to My Daughter by George Bishop (Feb. 2010 Random House)
    If I had a 15-year-old daughter, and she stormed out at night, sharing my own life might keep me calm while I waited. But I would share something I thought might help her. Unfortunately, Bishop's character doesn't get there.
  • Voices Raised on New Jersey Black Bears
    With a change of gubernatorial allegiance, it's time for another noisy fight over whether managing NJ black bears will include a hunt.
  • Income-tax Flexibility for Haiti Donations
    Did you make a cash donation to a U.S. organization caring for victims of the Haiti earthquake? If you made it by February 28, you have the option of taking the charitable deduction against 2009 or 2010 income.
  • Presbyterian Leaders Turn to Long Term in Haiti
    In their 2nd live Webinar on response to the January 12 earthquake in Haiti, mission and relief leaders of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) began outlining longer-term plans to address what former president Bill Clinton has called "rebuilding better."
  • Book Review: Anthill by E.O. Wilson (April 2010 W.W. Norton)
    E.O. Wilson even shared a Pulitzer Prize for his definitive 1990 treatise on "The Ants." It's good of him to try to bring us all back to our "bug periods," but his best writing is still where his heart is, in those superorganism colonies.
  • Book Review: The Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, by Jamie Ford
    I wish this novel had been simply titled from the button the protagonist was forced by his father to wear from the "day that will live in infamy" to the end of World War II: "I Am Chinese."
  • Book Review: The Almost Moon, by Alice Sebold
    I'd love to read a really skilled story of mental illness and its effect on a family. But even in less than a quarter of the book, no one seems to have any redeeming or sympathetic qualities.
  • Presbyterian Mission Leaders Report Haiti Update
    Leaders of the three primary agencies of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) providing aid to earthquake-stricken Haiti spoke for an hour on Thursday, February 11, to an open meeting of church members on the World Wide Web.
  • Pray Without Ceasing for Haiti
    Just because the benefit concert has aired and the news anchors have come home doesn't mean the survivors of the Haitian earthquake don't need us thinking about and praying for them every day. We just have to do our own work of keeping them in mind.
  • Praying for Haiti Earthquake Victims
    Prayer without words works for me on the inside, and I believe that affects the outside too.
  • Movie Reviews: New Year's Eve with the Thin Man Series
    Maybe there's a good reason I never knew there were six "Thin Man" movies, made over a span of 13 years. But discomfort with the last can't dim the sparkle of the first.
  • Experimental Cocktail: Lemon-Ginger Green-tea-ni
    Watching a marathon of "Thin Man" movies called for an elegant cocktail to sip, and items (mostly) already on hand yielded a delightful solution.
  • Vacation from the Crowds
    The best way to control your travel environment and be able to relax with the partners you choose may be to make the going the destination.
  • Abortion is Always an Option
    Congress, in negotiating a health-care overhaul, acts as if it's possible to legislate away a choice that has existed almost as long as pregnancy. They would do better - for all of us - to make abortion unnecessary.
  • Text-speak is Just One More New Grammar
    Language is a living thing that changes to make communication clearer and easier. Texting grammar developed organically and will live, die, or change according to its own usefulness.
  • Fruits of the Spirit: Conclusion
    "Fruit" was more directly important, and familiar, to the writers and readers of Bible times than to us who face shelves full of processed food products.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 8 and 9: Take and Give Graciously
    The Greek words chosen by Paul to cap his list of Fruits seem to draw the two together, and in a way that seems to talk about how a community expecting imminent vindication responds short term to the surrounding world.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 7: Commitment
    The traditional translation (faith) is too ambiguous and too often the cause of discord among those trying to live in the Spirit. Loyalty and commitment seem more productive and inspiring.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 6: Goodness
    We may think it's fairly easy to be generous, and even to be good. But the fruit of the Spirit of which Paul spoke may be a lot more challenging, something we, and even Jesus, would rather leave to God.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 5: Kindness
    Paul wasn't talking about the kind of kindness Jesus taught, but a much more practical way of getting by for the short term, leaving it to God to resolve things.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 4: Long-something
    In newer versions of the Bible, it's translated "patience," and in older ones "long-suffering." But neither of these directions really gets at the Greek word that Paul called a fruit of the Spirit.
  • Memoir or Novel, Tell Me a Story
    Too many writers are more worried about defending the veracity of every word if they call it a memoir and lose sight of telling a story to draw readers in. Reference to several recent works.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 3: Peace
    Serenity and wholeness for yourself is one thing; it's a whole lot toughter in a community. It must have been especially so in 1st-c Galatia.
  • More Afraid of the Mammogram Than the Cancer
    I've had one mammogram, some 20 years ago, and I couldn't be more relieved to have federal guidelines catch up to my argument.
  • Can't Go Back to the U.S.S.R
    I went to the Soviet Union mostly on a lark, fell in love with the people, and learned things that set my life on a new track. I went back, on another track, 14 years later, as the country was itself changing. But some things stay the same.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 2: Joy
    We may have put more baggage on joy than the Bible writers intended.
  • Fruits of the Spirit 1: Beloving
    It seems we need more than the usual translation as just plain "love."
  • Fruits of the Spirit - Introduction
    This passage has been a favorite reference point for Christians wherever it is known. The article introduces ten reflections on the nine fruits of the Spirit and their individual places in the biblical tradition.

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