Okay, Listen Here

Okay, Listen Here

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Remembering the Soldiers

On Saturday I travelled to Shiloh National Military Park to observe an armament display by re-enactors. I didn’t know what to expect but I must say that I was thoroughly enthralled. The exhibitors wore uniforms from every major war that the United States has been involved in since the beginning of this great country. They had set up tables with artifacts from their time period and some even brought jeeps and trucks from WWII and Korea. It was an amazing display. The men explained their different guns and then did a firing exhibition. It was fabulous! And, of course, I took pictures.

These are the re-enactors for all the wars except Viet Nam. Most of them were veterans.

The first soldier I talked to was from the American Revolution. He was a very knowledgeable young man. What amazed me about him was his knowledge of the different types of rifles used during the Revolutionary War.

The next soldier was from the War of 1812. He told me an interesting fact - those hats came in different heights. Short people got taller hats and tall people got shorter hats - all to make everyone look the same size. It was an intimidation factor. These hats were influenced by Napoleon's army.

Moving on to a war I did not recognize: the Mexican-American War which took place from 1846-1848. Most of the generals from the Civil War were young lieutenants in this war, including Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, Ulysses Grant and Ambrosius Burnside.

Next came the Civil War soldiers - both North and South. These guys were very informative and they had some pretty neat things they brought with them to show the visitors. The thing that struck me about their uniforms were how unkempt the regular soldiers were.

Ah, the Rough Riders! The Spanish-American war. It took place in 1898.
Yes, he was this cute.

Then came World War I. This doughboy was cute and very sweet. I spent a lot of time at his table .

He gets two pictures!

World War II and all the equipment. This guy was very military and very knowledgeable about the war. He was particularly interested in my great uncle's war letters about being Patton's jeep driver during the Battle of the Bulge.

Although people call it the Korean Conflict, my dad will tell you it was definitely a war.

Viet Nam - the first war that I remember. The one war, besides the Civil War, that tore this nation apart.

The Gulf War - I remember how quickly it started and was over - one month. Those guys were ready and knew their mission - stop Iraq.

Unfortunately, I didn't get a close picture of the Afghanistan/Iraq soldier. He is pictured in the first line-up.

So there you have it - the soliders who fought for the United States and for their ideals. I took a moment to look up the casualty lists from the wars:

Revolutionary War - 6,824 KIA (Killed in Action)
The War of 1812 - 2260 KIA
Mexican/American War - 1733 KIA
Civil War - 618,963 KIA
Spanish-American War - 2446 KIA
World War I - 116,000 KIA
World War II - 405,399 KIA
Korean War - 54,246 KIA
Viet Nam War - 58,000 KIA
Gulf War - 148 KIA
Iraq/Afghanistan - 5853 KIA as of December 9, 2010

I stood in the Shiloh Methodist Church, amidst the battlefields and the immense sense of silence that pervaded the place.

Funny how battlegrounds always seem holy. And they are. These men at Shiloh and all the men who died for this nation in other wars have consecrated the ground where they died with their blood. They died for a cause and a belief that made this nation free. I thank them.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memoial Day

We hope everyone is having a restful happy holiday. Take a moment to think of those who have ensured that we are able to have restful happy holidays.

Friday, May 27, 2011


Jean is reading Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage by Jennifer Ashley.

Kathy is reading Society's Most Disreputable Gentleman by Julia Justiss.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Here Comes Summer

Summer is coming!  Summer is coming!  It is the refrain that skips happily around in my head.  As a adult it often feels as if there are events that we use to mark the passage of time...holidays, championships,  birthdays, anniversaries, and even deaths.  They are often the events that create "before" and "after" times.  You know how that is.  You say to someone, "Oh, you remember that was the summer before Precious Angel was born." Or "That was the year our team went to the state championship game!" 

As a teacher, I often mark time as you know that was before Christmas or after testing.  Since Christmas I have had huge snowfalls, flooding and tornadoes so I guess it is very understandable that getting out of school for summer would seem even more important this year because it will bring a close to the year that Mother Nature played havoc with us.  So I am embracing the idea that summer vacation is almost here!

What are some events that you use to mark the passage of time in your life?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What Do You Want Most?

I've been trying to catch up on things I've neglected in the past few months. No matter what I do, however, I just can't seem to get ahead. Isn't that always the way of it? ;)

How many of you are in the same predicament? How do you regain momentum when time seems to be against you?

I started the year off by adherring to a strict calendar template of do's and don'ts. Exercise, writing challenges, deadlines, contests, and most important family time were at the heart of my timeline. I've done better at some, than others. Did well exercising for a few months, then slacked off. Stuck to my required writing schedule more than I thought I would. But then other obligations sidelined my efforts. (Pirate! Always distracted by adventure.)

Don't get me wrong. I'm still on task, but the things I've had to focus on lately were not on my schedule. As an example: weeding my garden and planting flowers. That has been on my seasonal agenda but I had just about brushed that off. After purchasing flowers, however, I finally got the urge to see the job through. I've only got a few more plantings to do and then my garden will be ready for the season. Yay! I do love my garden. Next to the ocean, it is my fortress of solitude.

I entered the Maggie's this year and now, with the deadline looming close, must give my entries a final look-over before sending them out to contest coordinators. Thankfully, I'm on schedule here. But no matter how many times you look at writing, it always seems to change, or rather you change and see it with jaded/bejeweled eyes. Why does that happen and why is the rum always gone? ;)

I'm the luncheon coordinator for our local writing chapter, Heart of Dixie. Due to the horrific weather we had nearly one month ago, and the cancellation of our luncheon, I'm back at work trying to pick up the momentum we had up until everything went black. We've got a great team pulling this shindig together so I know it will be a wonderful afternoon for our luncheon guests. And, thankfully, our guest speaker, Kerrelyn Sparks, the venue and our local hotel were able to re-schedule us for that perfect day, next month. Many people have helped to get this event off and running and I'm indebted to them. Still... the luncheon will put a dent in my plans, as well as everyone else's as we all had other things lined up for June. Though we all want to devote our time to this, here again is something that was not on my list. (Man the braces!) ;)

This post is not meant to be a downer. I'm not about negativity. I'm excited about the things in my life. But with the many happenings/events/plans, worry often follows. I have two sons in the service, one overseas and one stationed stateside, plus one SIL-to-be in Afghanistan and a nephew holding down our Texas border, while arresting illegal immigrants and drug cartel, very dangerous indeed. My children are spread all across the world and I miss them terribly. And because of the distance between us, I'm constantly trying to fill the divide. (Rely on a compass that points to what you want most.)

Hubby and I celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary this past weekend. Woot! At a table nearby was a family with two young daughters. One look was all it took for me to recall the days we sat in a restaurant, all six of us, giggling and enjoying each other's company. Those were adventurous times! This became a precious moment, one making it all too clear I'm getting older and time matters. (Perhaps I need to journey to the fountain of youth.)

My heart is not only focused on my needs, but the collective need around us. There is a great cry for compassion in our country. We don't have to look far to hear the voices calling out to us. Tornadoes in Alabama jolted us aware. Now there is Joplin, Missouri, and Oklahoma too. So many people have made calendars they planned to follow this year, which are now null and void under the circumstances.

The point of this blog today is: you can have all the plans in the world but if you lose focus on what's important, you have nothing at all. I'm dealing with that today.

What has jolted you awake? What strides have you taken to get back on track?

(Schedules can be amended, but stay grounded by keeping a compass that points to what you want most, at the ready. :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Past is Not Dead...

The past is not dead. It isn’t even past. – William Faulkner

If you’ve ever been to Charleston, South Carolina, this quote personifies the residents and the city. I thought we, in the DEEP SOUTH, clung to our heritage like a lifeline but Charlestonians take it to a new level. They live, eat and breathe their birthrights as Southerners.

When we arrived in downtown Charleston, I was surprised to see so many lovely homes. Not just the ones you always see in the photos that sit on the Battery looking across the bay at Fort Sumter, but more elegant and refined homes tucked away in spots all over the city. My first choice to visit was the Aiken-Rhett House (Rhett seems to be an old city name – hence maybe Rhett Butler?). The house, built in 1818, is still intact as it existed. No additions, no change in the interior. The actual wallpaper and paint, though faded and damaged by Hurricane Hugo, was there for you to inspect. It actually felt like you had stepped back in time. This was what the citizens call an Urban Plantation. The term meant that the back yard contained a stable, a henhouse, a cow shed, a laundry and a spot for a small vegetable garden – all a self-contained little world. I loved the place even though other visitors thought it shabby. My favorite part was the grand entry hall made of marble, such elegance! It portrayed how those houses actually looked in their original form.

The next house we visited, The Nathaniel Russell House, was built in 1808, by a Rhode Island merchant who amassed a fortune in Charleston.

The house is built in a Federal Style, not much to look at from the exterior, but oh, when you pass through the front door, through the business parlor and into the family house, it is magnificent. There is a free-flying staircase that rises for three stories. The home has been conserved and painstakingly restored to what it was like in Russell’s time. The colors and the plasterwork are simply amazing. This is the house I would live in, hands down.

One house, which some of you might recognize from “The Notebook” and the mini-series “North and South”, is the Calhoun Mansion.

The guide, standing on the expansive steps, told us that he called this the “OMG” house. When he opened the beveled glass doors allowing us in, the first words out of my mouth was “OMG!” The dwelling is twenty-four thousand feet. It took five years to build and was completed in 1876. George W. Williams, a wealthy banker and merchant, was also a blockade-runner during the Civil War, amassing a great wealth, which he promptly put in English banks. Disliked because of this, his home was still the place to go for dinners for the impoverished gentry of Charleston. His wife, a staunch Methodist, abhorred drinking and gossip but loved to show off her house to guests. Louis Comfort Tiffany was a frequent guest and one time made a mistake of giving her a Japanese Saki set. Even though she refused the gift, Tiffany (who had done quite a bit of work in the mansion), asked what she would prefer. A chandelier for the main drawing room, she declared. Six months later, a crate arrived with the chandelier. Imagine Mrs. Williams’s horror to see that the saki set had been incorporated into the Tiffany Chandelier. If you go to the house’s website, www.calhounmansion.net, and look at slide 34, that is the chandelier (we weren't allowed to take pictures inside but do look at this slideshow to see true opulence). Evidently she knew superb craftsmanship even if it did have a saki set integrated into it because it's still hanging there. The current owner, a lawyer and avid collector, has filled EVERY available space in the house with priceless items. The pictures in the slides do not show this – I mean every square inch is covered in some type of antique glass, furniture, picture or something. It’s actually overwhelming.

Wandering around on Meeting Street you will see what looks like decorations on the sides of the houses. Some are ornate, some just plain bolts with a plate. I finally asked someone what those things were. Earthquake bolts.

It seems Charleston was hit by a devastating earthquake in 1886 which damaged quite a few of the homes. A long iron rod was inserted through the floorboards of the houses and anchored through the walls with a washer device call a gib plate. The bolt was then tightened and the house was squared up. I don’t know if this actually works but it is interesting. The person also told me that only the houses pre-1886 has them. One more minutiae I could garner.

We took a carriage ride and gawked at the beautiful houses, especially what Charlestonians called Single Houses. These houses are narrow, one room wide and have sweeping porches which they call piazzas.

The entrance is a door on the street that leads to the porches where the real door is located. Our carriage driver said that if the door was closed back in the day that meant “Do Not Disturb.” Now the owners have to keep them closed, too many tourists.

Further up the street is a lovely hotel called the Mills House Hotel. We ate lunch in its garden and thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere.

The thing that struck me, which may just be a tale that Charlestonians tell, is one about General Robert E. Lee. He stayed in the hotel at the beginning of the war and was standing on the balcony over looking Meeting Street smoking a cigar. He saw a horse and rider coming down the street at what he called a buck-trot and hailed the rider. General Lee told the rider that he had seen a similar horse back at a fair in Virginia and had almost bought it. The rider said that he had bought that horse at that fair. General Lee told him to take care of that horse. Later, in the war, the rider was wounded and couldn’t take care of the horse. He had it sent to General Lee. The horse’s name was Traveller. Ah, the romance of such a story even if it might not be true.

We wandered on to the City Market. It has gaudy items and touristy things to purchase. There are also sweetgrass baskets made by the Gullah women of the area. Very expensive at the market. I had been told to go up Highway 17N and there were stalls along the road where the baskets could be purchased at a better price. These baskets, woven from sweetgrass and stitched with palmetto leaves are quite beautiful. I came away with three.

In the main building of the market is a grand structure owned by the Daughters of the Confederacy. I had to see the inside.

The museum had many fine examples of clothing, uniforms and arms from the war. But the thing that impressed me the most was they possessed a lock of General Lee’s hair and a lock of Jefferson Davis’ hair. Those ladies in there were quite helpful and answered any question I had. At the foot of the building as I was leaving, I bought palmetto roses for my blog buddies – these were given to the soldiers as they went off to war as a sign of fidelity and the soldier was to bring it home to his sweetheart when the war was over.

And, of course, what trip to Charleston would be complete without taking the boat out to Fort Sumter?

This is the 150th anniversary of the shots fired at the Union Troops occupying the fort. The bombardment from Fort Johnson (not located in Charleston but across the bay) started at 4:25 a.m. on April 12, 1861 and continued for 34 hours. At the time the bombardment started, the fort rose three stories above the water. After, the fort was greatly diminished. (One fact Charlestonians won’t tell you is that the first shots were actually fired on January 9, 1861, by Citadel cadets at a ship trying to enter the harbor to supply Fort Sumter).

During the bombardment, the citizens sat on the piazzas, sipping drinks and enjoying the fireworks, heedless of the horror that was to later come. The Civil War took 640,000 Americans before it ended almost four years to the date it started.

I enjoyed my visit to Charleston. It’s a lovely city and I learned quite a few things while I was there.

Have you ever visited Charleston? What city would you like to see? Do you have any favorite spots to vacation? Tell us about them.

Monday, May 23, 2011

I was like, "Hand Me that Dish Rag. I Dropped Creamed Potatos on My House Coat."

If you start out, "I was, like, Oh, my God," you just are not going to be able to bring it back to eloquence. Can't be done. Language is ever changing, but there are evolutions that are not for the better. Using was like instead of said or asked is one of them—as in "I was like, are we going to the mall?"

This has bothered me for a while but it was set off anew this morning. My friend, Dr. Effervescent, and I do not see enough of each other to suit either of us. However, this weekend another friend received an award and we traveled to lay witness to the ceremony. We were grabbing a last few minutes together on the swing in front of the Comfort Inns and Suites when a woman we'd never seen before chose to join us and chat us up. We were not delighted but it is, after all, a free country and we didn't own the swing. Being polite, we talked to her.

Then she started in about our accents. I let it go on for a while but, finally, I said, "You know, we don't have accents. We are at home." This was not precisely true, of course. We were at the before mentioned Comfort Inns and Suites in Elizabethtown, Kentucky but we were in our region. She thought it was funny but I wasn't kidding. I'll take dialect but I only have an accent outside of the southeastern United Stated.

I notice that with each generation, dialects become a little more homogeneous. My mother and my aunts said forevah, nevah, and ambah—that's forever, never, and amber—but my cousins and I do not. We pronounce our er's. It can't be helped. I wouldn't even want to help it because unnatural dialect is not attractive.

But this set me thinking about the phrases and words that have changed for me since I was a child. Like the dialect changes, it was not a conscious decision. I don't know where it came from but some where along the way:

  • supper (as the evening meal) became dinner
  • dinner (as in the noon meal) became lunch
  • housecoat became robe
  • dishrag became tea towel
  • creamed potatoes became mashed potatoes
  • bathing suit became swimsuit
  • house shoes became slippers

Unlike I was like, none of these things are bad but it makes me sad. I let these perfectly good words that were part of my natural language be replaced like garter belts and stockings. (Okay, so I'm not old enough that I ever knew anything but pantyhose but you get my drift.)

But I am willful so I have made a decision: I am taking back the dishrag and creamed potatoes.

How has your language changed?

Friday, May 20, 2011


Jean is reading Lady Isabella's Scandalous Marriage by Jennifer Ashley.

Stephanie is reading Mind Game by Christine Feehan.

What are you reading?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Graduation or Commencement

Graduation or commencement? That is the question.

Today at my school we are having 5th grade graduation.  It is all around us--the  excited eager faces of the students as they prepare for the ceremony; girls nervously hugging each other and anyone else in their paths,  the guys trying to look cool and calm in their dress shirts and ties. This is the scene that is played out all across America this time of year.

At our school relatives come in from distant states as well as from within the neighborhood to support the students.  The success of the graduates is celebrated with an awards program.  Of course, there are the usual speeches but the highlight of the day is the slide show of the students' pictures and the "shout-outs" that each student gives to the people  who have been a positive force in their life.  This is usually very touching and often very, very comical!   The baby pictures are always wonderful (even if the teacher who produces the slide show has to get creative sometimes).

We call this ceremony a graduation.  Later when these same students finish the 12th grade they will participate in another ceremony that will be called commencement.  It will basically be the same ceremony: march in, sit through speeches, get awards and diplomas, be embarrassed by relatives. 

What do you think makes some of these ceremonies graduations and some of them commencements?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Something Wickedly Delicious This Way Comes

“Line up, ye scabrous dogs!”

“Watch the rocks, mate!”

“Man the braces!”

“Make way for adventure.”

“Prepare ye the way for that jack of all trades, Captain Jack Sparrow!”

You’d have to be from another planet not to know how eagerly I have been waiting for May 20th. A day that will live out in an infamous spectacle of pirates, dreds, doo-dads, pirates, mermaids, pirates, hand to hand swordplay, more pirates, a solid performance by Johnny Depp, and gads more pirates.

‘Twill be a day for the tired and forlorn to brave the tide by rowing against haggard surf to purchase a ticket to the 4th greatest romp in cinema history. The Lord is oh! so good!

First, there was Pirates of the Caribbean, Curse of the Black Pearl. Disney media frenzy called for the second film, Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Man’s Chest, closely followed by Pirates of the Caribbean, At World’s End. (Be still my heart! Somebody out there wubs me. Because as I yearned for more, my deepest desires were made manifest!)

Now I can proudly display my ravenous delight to all. Make way! Go forth, I tell you. Go to your nearest movie theatre as fast as the currents allow. Jack, that rascal, is back!

Behold I give you, Pirates of the Caribbean, On Stranger Tides!

Brave, spirited, flailing hands and tremulous shutters, inebriated antics which mask a superior mind, Jack, that pirate of all pirates, (Errol Flynn and Tyrone Power combined) emerges from the depths to claim an even deeper place in the hearts of millions everywhere as he sets sail against a fearless foe, Blackbeard, and rekindles an old flame in Penelope Cruise.

Yes, to say I am eager for this movie is putting it mildly. (My bobble-head parrot agrees! My parrot wind chime echoes an affirmative tinkle.)

Last year, Lynn Raye Harris sent me a link to the first POTC, On Stranger Tides, trailer. Jack, himself, sat before the camera providing tid-bits for fans about the latest development of his, locating the fountain of youth. Truly in earnest, I clasped my hands to my chest. Another movie?

(Cue Sally.) Yes! Yes! And, yes!

Can you tell I’m excited about this momentous day? I give you...

Are you planning on going to see POTC’s latest installment? Which of the three movies is your favorite? And, if you could be a character from the films, which one would you be?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Commando Mule

Recently, one of the boys attended Mule Days at the Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration Arena in Shelbyville, Tennessee. He was excited and told me all about it. It seems that mules have come into their own – especially gaited mules (a cross between a donkey and a Tennessee Walking horse) and are extremely expensive. One friend of mine sold his gaited mule for over $10,000.00 , quite a large amount for a STERILE animal in my opinion. You cannot go to a horse show these days without there being a mule class. I, for one, am still not convinced that these people know exactly what they are dealing with. My grandfather, a farmer, always had mules to use for plowing. His favorite quote was “A mule will live twenty years to get a chance to kill you.” If any mule aficionados ever read this, I am sure I will get hate mail because they all espouse the wonders of a mule and it’s extreme intelligence. I, for one, have to agree – they’re smart, like a fox casing a henhouse.

For general information, a mule is a cross between a donkey stallion (called a jack) and a horse mare. Hinnies (not as common) are a cross between a stallion horse and a female donkey (called a jennet – Chaucer anyone?). Male and female mules have all the correct anatomical parts but are ninety-nine percent sterile. Only one in a million mare mules have foaled and there has never been a reported case of a male mule producing an offspring. Burros are really donkeys that the Spanish brought over to Mexico (today you don’t call donkeys that unless you can show they are of that original Spanish stock – who knew?) If you ever wondered where the term “jackass” came from, well, a donkey was originally scientifically called Equus asinus (ass) and a male donkey is a jack. Hence “jackass.” This is all probably more information than you will ever want to know about mules and donkeys but I thought you might enjoy it for…well, so maybe I might be wrong.

I grew up around mules. My grandfather used draft mules to plow and pull wagons. I never gave much thought to them, not considering my love of horses. A mule was just an ugly large horse with long ears – not my cup of tea. A few years ago we purchased a farm near Arab. I thought it would be fun to get some horses (not my brightest thought) and relive my youth. Part of the package deal was that the previous owner had left a blind horse and her two-year-old baby, a mule (anyone see this coming?). I felt sorry for the mother and the mule was, well, just a mule. Or so I thought.

My first meeting with Daisey, the mule, was not pleasant. She took an instant dislike to me which she firmly adheres to, even today. She adores my husband and will not allow me to get within ten feet of him. I decided right then and there that my hubby could deal with her; I had better things called horses.

Daisey, however, was not to be denied. She knew that she deserved attention and went about getting it. She made, in her younger days, frequent jailbreaks. Getting loose was her favorite pastime and she certainly would not come to me, running around and daring me to get just close enough for my fingers to brush her halter. It crossed my mind, time and time again, just to shoot her but she knew my hubby would always save her- she was his favorite. And after all, she was, in her mind and in his, the most beautiful creature on the place. We established a wary relationship with each other – I made sure not to be near her hindquarters at any time. She had a nasty habit of trying to kick me while still looking angelic.

Daisey is not happy!

One day, I pulled in at the farm with my husband and Daisey was lying on the ground in the middle of the pasture. Just for information, horses and mules do lie down to sleep but usually kind of sitting up. Daisey, however, was sprawled out and appeared to be dead. Good, I thought, now I don’t have to deal with her and her spiteful antics. Turkey buzzards were circling, a sure sign that she had bit the Big One. Then I saw her tail twitch. I blinked and it twitched again. As I stood there watching, a buzzard landed near the “carcass.” In a flash, the mule was up and chasing the buzzard. Poor bird- it was too confused to fly because dead things just don’t get up. The bird kept running around in circles while Daisey gleefully chased it. To this day we still refer to this as the “buzzard-hunting incident.” I haven’t seen too many buzzards near the pasture any more. I’m sure word gets around.

The next year I had a mare that foaled. We kept her and the baby penned up in the paddock. I had constructed what I thought was a mule-proof fence: seven feet high (mules can jump any fence from a standing position – a rare feat but normal for them) and made of sturdy four-by-fours. However, I quickly learned, the old saying that a mule can tear up a steel ball is true. I had wanted to make sure that my nemesis did not get to the newborn filly. Imagine my surprise upon seeing Daisey lying flat on the ground, inching her way under the boards. She was halfway under the fence when I caught her. Now, this is a fourteen-hundred-pound mule and needless to say it was a tight squeeze for her. The minute I started shouting at her, she stood up, took out half the fence and continued into the paddock toward the foal. To my surprise, all she wanted to do was sniff the baby. That done, she went back to the new, rather large, hole in the fence and crawled back under. That incident earned her the moniker of “Commando Mule.” I keep looking for her weapons stash. I know it’s around here somewhere.

Daisey and I are both a lot older now. She walks more slowly and has less interest in killing me (I think). Her biggest antic these days is to fasten all the quarter horses up in their stalls and make me panic looking for them (she can actually open the stall doors, waits for them to enter looking for food and then she slams the door shut on them – so much for horses). Lately, she’s had a couple of bad incidents with her feet and has condescended to allow me to doctor her. After all, what do serfs do? They serve. I am sure, that when I die, she’ll be standing there, laughing. After all, a mule will live twenty years to kill you…

Daisey with one of her victims.

Any fond memories of the old days when farmers used mules? Any farm stories? I know a lot of us grew up around farms and I want to hear about your experiences.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Beach, Prom Breakfast, and a Dying Cat

The title sums up the last five days of my life. Of course, I will elaborate though not necessarily in that order. Did you have any doubt?

The Beach

I just returned from the beach where I spent four days with nine amazing women. We were missing a few--stuff always comes up—but we lamented their absence early and often. When you go to the beach with women, if there is:

  • No righteous indignation over someone done wrong
  • No hugs and I love yous
  • No "You cooked. We'll clean up."
  • No making more coffee after getting the last cup
then you are at the beach with the wrong women. I was not.

The Dying Cat

I returned from the beach to find that The Guy had set up a Kitty Hospice on my back porch. It isn't our cat and it's a long sad story about a sweet little stray and a neighbor who had the exterminator in. I don't want to talk about it but I am thankful I am married to this man.

Prom Breakfast

Godson's Mom and I left the beach a day before the others because Precious Angel's junior prom was Saturday night. It has become the thing to have a wee hours after prom breakfast in someone's home. I think some parents invented it so they'd know where their kids were. It was a good idea. We had it at my house because I live in town as opposed to over hill, over dale, out by the Country Club like Casa Precious Angel.

Precious Angel made the menu—waffles, bacon, biscuits, gravy, cheese grits. An odd combination, but okay. Godson's Mom and I added sausage balls, cinnamon rolls (homemade, thank you very much), virgin mimosas (Sprite make a fine stand in for champagne), and strawberries and whipped cream for the waffles. The five couples came barreling in, hot and tired from dancing, but happy and polite. They changed out of their glam togs, ate heartily, and went upstairs to watch Up. To a child, every single one of them looked all four adults in the eyes and expressed eloquent appreciation for the little party. I would like for the people who rant about "the youth of today" to meet these kids.

I think Godson's Mom, Godson's Dad, The Guy, and I were washing silver and crystal about the time my friends who were still at the beach should have been just getting back from the Beach Boys concert.

Godson's Mom and I maintain that, though we love our beach buddies, we didn't miss a thing.There will be other times and other concerts with our forever friends but you can't get Prom Breakfast back.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Exciting News!

Hello gang,
We have much to share here under the Tulip Tree today. 

As you have probably noticed by now, Pantster (Jean) is letting me do today's blog since she put something up for me last week.  I still don't have internet at home but I have electricity and I am not injured or dead so I am counting this a win.

We  are very excited to announce  that our Heart of Dixie Luncheon has been rescheduled for June 4th.  The luncheon will still be in Huntsville at the Von Braun Civic Center.  Here is the link for the  updated information:

The speaker is the fabulous Kerrelyn Sparks.  We are so excited!

Kerrelyn Sparks
We invite each of you to come on out and join us.

If you have ever attended the Heart of Dixie Reader's Luncheon, what is your favorite memory from it?