Friday Fragments From A Frazzled Woman…

Half-Past Kissin' Time

Have you ever had one of those weeks where nothing went according to plan?  That’s the kind of week it’s been for me.

My body has been struggling, all week, trying to get adjusted to the recent time change.  As a result, I haven’t been feeling my best.  Then, Monday began with the death of my pet parakeet, ‘Tweety’, and the week quickly went downhill from there.  (Thought: Perhaps ‘Tweety’ didn’t adjust well to the time change either.)

Tuesday morning I heard noise outside, and looked outside to find a dear [male] friend of Ed’s and mine, who lives out-of-town, walking through our yard.  It was 8:30 in the morning, I hadn’t even combed my hair or gotten dressed, and yet I was about to have a morning visitor!  Ha!  He said he was just passing by, and decided to stop by for a few minutes.  He does that every once in a while.

On Wednesday, I’d planned to rake pine straw and work in the yard.  Instead, my daughter called, and I ended up going on a ‘road trip’ with her and granddaughter.  Not what I’d planned, but a heck of a lot more fun than raking pine straw!

Speaking of that ‘road trip’, two strange things happened during it.  First of all, we saw a woman, in the K-mart parking lot selling doughnuts.  The lady was a dead ringer for ‘Mama June’ off of the [now canceled] show “Honey Boo Boo”!  My daughter swears it was ‘Mama June’.  We do live in the same state, so who knows?!  Ha!

The second strange thing that happened on our road trip was when we passed a car with a live Christmas tree tied to its roof!  Really?!  It’s only the first week of November.  I can only imagine how dried out that tree will be by the last week of December! Speaking of the first week of November–what’s up with all of these Christmas movies and commercials already?  When did we start going straight from Halloween to Christmas, without celebrating Thanksgiving first?

As we all know, Tuesday was election day.  Our city keeps moving our voting place, so before every election we have to figure out where to go vote.  This was the third election I’ve voted in (within four years), and I haven’t voted in the same place twice!  We were told our voting place is going to be moved again, following Tuesday’s election.  What in the world?!  

Our weather is absolutely c-r-a-z-y!  One day it’s in the 60’s, two days later, it’s back near 80 degrees, etc.  Back and forth.  Thank goodness for the climate control on the central unit!  I go to bed with the air conditioning blowing, but wake up with the heat on.  Ah, the joys of living in the south!

I can’t believe it, but Ed will be 65, next week.  His birthday is next Thursday, but I’m waiting until next Saturday night to have his birthday celebration.  It’s a shame the government went and moved the ‘full benefit’ social security retirement age to 66.  Had it not been for that, Ed could be having a double celebration!  Instead, he’ll get on medicare, whether he wants to or not, and keep on working for a while longer.

Happy House Anniversary to us!  Seven years ago, today, Ed and I moved into our second house–the house Ed built [next-door to our original house] from the ground up, during weekends and after work. Sometimes I still wonder how he managed to do that!

That’s all I’ve got for today.  I hope to spend the weekend relaxing and continuing to adjust to the new time.  Monday will be here before we know it!

I’m linking my post up @ Half-Past Kissin’ Time.



Published in: on November 7, 2014 at 7:51 am  Comments (9)  
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Looking Back and Forward, Too…

I’m a little late, but I didn’t want to get too far into the new year without taking a look back at 2012.  I began keeping this blog for my family, but as the years are quickly passing, I  find myself reading back and remembering, as well.  Some days I think I’ve forgotten more than I can remember…

The year 2012 found Ed and me trying to become more self-sufficient.  In February, we began our first garden adventure.  This adventure is still ongoing!  We planted a spring garden, followed by a fall garden, followed by a winter garden!  (After three attempts, we finally have a patch of mustard greens)  We failed at growing a few things, but had success with so many more.  Most important, though, we found a hobby that we both enjoy doing together–and the food we grow tastes fantastic!

Early spring of 2012, also found us with six baby chicks, in a box, inside of our house.  What an adventure that turned out to be!  The chirping, the feeding, the cleaning, and constant supervision–but it was so worth it!  (Of course, we eventually built a chicken coop and moved our new feathered friends outside.)  If you are bored, and need a little excitement in your life, I highly recommend getting some chickens!  I can not spend any time with the chickens without laughing–or at least smiling.  They’re always happy to see me, and they love me unconditionally.  They also lay lots of eggs.  Over 600 and counting, since July!

2012 was the year I had my first experience with jury duty.  I was chosen to serve, but the case was thrown out before we had to make a decision.  It would be my first and last experience on jury duty.  I received a second summons, about six months later, but was released from ever serving again, per my doctor’s orders.

2012 was also my first time voting in a presidential election.  After years of being complacent, letting others make the decisions, I chose to stand up and let my voice be heard.  2012 was also the first time I ever fasted and prayed during an election–or any other time for that matter.  That self-discipline would prove to be helpful during the month of December.

The summer of 2012 began much like any other summer.  Ed and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary, with our usual trip to the beach. We had a great time of celebration, and life couldn’t have been better!  However not long after our anniversary, things changed drastically for our family.

First of all, our daughter and I had a disagreement, and we ended up being estranged for over three months.  Up to this point, we’d always been inseparable and our lives were closely intertwined.  It was one of the most difficult situations either of us has been involved in.  In one way or another, the entire family became involved.  My daughter and I eventually resolved our situation, but we both came away different.  In some ways, the changes were positive, but overall, in the end, something precious was lost.

During the estrangement with my daughter, I became ill.  Now that I’m more educated, I realize that a lot of things were happening in my life, and in my body, which created “a perfect storm”.  It all began with the argument, then a radical hormonal shift, followed by a simultaneous yeast infection/urinary tract infection.  I had blood in my urine, so I was prescribed Cipro, a broad range antibiotic…and thus the cycle of uncontrollable yeast within my body began.

In the meantime, our youngest son and his wife were getting ready to make their move.  After thirty-four years of having all three of our children living within close proximity, on the family farm, one was actually moving away–and it was hard to see him go.  A little piece of my heart went with him on the day he moved, but his happiness is what matters most.

The rest of 2012 came and went in the blur of fighting this “beast” within my body–and it had literally taken over my body, but I didn’t realize it for a while.  Multiple doctor visits, medications, and home remedies seemed to provide a little improvement, but no cure.  I was quickly becoming a woman at the end of her rope.

As a last resort, I was put on a drastic “candida elimination diet”, in December, and I, also, began to do some research.  I discovered just how much this “beast” has invaded my system, and what a strong hold it has on me.  Apparently, there is no quick and easy fix for systemic yeast.  It requires stress control,  the right combination of medications, the right diet, and lots of time to break its strong hold.  It’s an ongoing process.

Christmas!  What a time to be put on a diet of any kind, much less a highly restrictive diet!  The self-discipline,  practiced during the election fast, suddenly came into play.  I shed a few tears over the holidays, but I didn’t give in, despite being surrounded by “sweets”.  I managed to lose nine pounds in December, something I needed to do.

This diet for 2013 brings me full circle, back  to where we started in 2012.  You see, the key to this particular “candida elimination diet” is lots of fresh green vegetables and proteins.  No processed foods, no additives, no sugar, only whole grains, and very few carbohydrates.  What are the chances that we’d have learned how to grow our own garden and acquire chickens last year?  Who knew these things would play such a  pivotal role in the journey to regaining my health in 2013?  Those eggs and mustard greens are now mainstays in my new diet!   It never ceases to amaze me how “all things work together for good”…

Published in: on January 4, 2013 at 1:16 pm  Comments (3)  
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Flashback Friday ~ MeMa’s Car Mishaps…

On Wednesday,  I went to visit my mother-in-law, also known in our family as “Mema”.  It had been a few weeks since I’d seen Mema, and we had a great visit.  As we sat in our rocking chairs, we began reminiscing about days gone by.

Somehow the subject of cars came  up, and we began discussing some of the ” car mishaps” that Mema has been involved in over the years.  There have been a few…

The first  car mishap took place somewhere around the late 1950’s.  My hubby, Ed,  was an older child by then, probably eleven, but his two younger brothers were still quite young.  Ed had been painting on this particular day, when he forgot and left the can of paint and brush unattended.  Ed’s little brothers found the paint and proceeded to paint all over their mother’s car with it!  Fortunately, their handiwork was soon discovered,  before it had a chance to dry and ruin the car, but Ed still got into trouble for his error!  (Above is a photo of Ed’s dad and his little brothers, along with the car)

I guess you could say Ed got his payback for the “car painting incident”, some years later, when his mother accidentally set his car door on fire by placing a  lit cigarette butt in a paper cup in the car door!  Ed and his mom were in the drug store browsing, when a person came rushing in to say that somebody’s car outside was on fire!  It happened to be mine and Ed’s!  Fortunately, the damage was minor, but Ed was still left with a hole burned into the upholstery of the door!   Ed’s mom offered to pay for the damage, but we decided not to worry about it.  We sold the car a few months later.

I happened to be involved in ” car mishap #3″.  By this time, Mema was driving a 1975, black Ford Elite.  This car was actually the first new car that Ed and I ever owned.  We bought it new, but later sold it to her.  Ed’s mom and I had been on a shopping trip and were on our way back home, when suddenly a large black cow wandered out onto the highway…  Mema applied the brakes, but wasn’t able to come to a complete stop before hitting the cow.  The car knocked the cow off its feet with a thud.  However, the cow was able to get back up on her feet and walk away, with nothing more than a few bumps and bruises. Luckily, this happened back in the day when cars were still made with sturdy metal bumpers, so it didn’t hurt the car either–not even a scratch!

Car mishap #4 involved a different car, many years later, and the car wasn’t so lucky this time!  It all began when my mother-in-law headed to work one morning, and ended up literally driving into the building where she worked!  She’s still not quite sure what happened, but somehow the car was propelled straight through the front of the building, and into the waiting room of the doctor’s office where she worked!  Fortunately, nobody was injured, but I can’t say the same for the car.  Every piece of that car was either dented or scraped!  It was a total loss.  The building didn’t look so good either!  (Somewhere we have a newspaper clipping showing this, but I’ve looked everywhere and can’t find it)

Mema’s next car was a lovely baby blue Grand Marquis.  I always loved that car!  Unfortunately, this car was involved in two–yes, two– “mishaps”!  The first accident occurred when another driver ran a red light, and plowed into the side of the car, while Ed’s parents and another couple were in it.  Nobody was seriously injured, but the car was!  The car was repaired and eventually my husband ended up owning it.

The second, and final “mishap”  involving the baby blue Grand Marquis occurred late one evening, when Ed sped off in it to see about our daughter, who called and said she thought she heard an intruder outside of her home!  Ed lost control of the car on the curve in our road, and landed upside down in the middle of the soybean field between our home and hers!  I don’t know how Ed escaped with only a broken shoulder, hurt knee,  and lots of bumps and bruises.  The car rolled several times before coming to rest on its top!  Ed’s a very lucky man–the car?  Not so lucky.  Another total loss.

MeMa  bought one final new car after the blue Grand Marquis,  a white Lincoln Town Car.  It was a beauty, and came equipped with all sorts of “bells and whistles”.  It was the nicest car she’d ever owned.  These days her car sits at her house, parked under the car port.  It only gets driven on special occasions.  It’s been nearly ten years since Mema stopped driving, which means the days of Mema’s car mishaps are a thing of the past…hopefully!

Published in: on March 29, 2012 at 9:14 pm  Comments (4)  
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My Old Neighborhood…

 Actually, I had more than one neighborhood while growing up.  My family lived in at least six different neighborhoods during my childhood!  The final house we lived in was my favorite, and I’ve always considered it my childhood home.  We moved there when I was eleven, and my parents lived there for about eight years.

Before we moved to my final childhood neighborhood, my uncle and his family were living in the house that we eventually ended up moving into.  My family and I lived one street over, so I was a frequent visitor to my cousins’ house!  My uncle had two daughters just a couple of years older than me, and we had some fun times playing at their house.  The house was already like a “second home” to me by the time we moved there. 

mama during one of those fun times...Christmas 1970!

The house was located beside the main strip of Highway 301 which runs through our town.  In those days, the teenagers rode up and down the strip of Highway 301, between Reese’s 301 Drive-In and The Dairy Queen–because there wasn’t anything else to do!  (there still isn’t!)  Teenagers weren’t supposed to loiter, so they had to keep riding!  I could see the “main drag” from my bedroom window, and it was always fun to see who was riding up and down the strip!  Teenagers love to ride, you know!  Sometimes all that riding caused excitement!

this car belonged to a friend...he actually drove his "convertible" around town!

Late one night, my future hubby and I were sitting in his car, parked in front of my house.  We did that a lot at the end of our dates.  I had to be home by 11:30, but Ed could stay later if he wanted, so we frequently sat and talked a while.  Ed’s car was  facing away from the main strip of highway.  Suddenly, we heard a very loud crash down by the highway!  It turns out that a couple, out on a date, were going way too fast, lost control of the car, and hit the light pole at the end of the road in front of my house!  Not only that, but somehow the car flipped!  The couple had some minor injuries, but no fatalities, thank goodness!

There was a small vacant lot beside our house, and a larger vacant lot across highway 301.  Eventually, someone decided that the larger vacant lot across the highway would be a great place to host the yearly carnival!  So for a week each October, the carnival was held across the street from our house!  Lights, noise, action–until 1 o’clock in the morning–for six days!  Oh, and that vacant lot beside our house?  It became the parking lot for the carnival! 

me and a friend...the small vacant lot is behind us, then Hwy 301, then the larger vacant lot where the carnival was held

The house next-door to ours was a rental house.  At one point, a mother and her teenaged daughter moved into the rental house.  The daughter was a couple of years younger than me, and looked like Cher. From that moment on, things got a lot more exciting in our neighborhood!  Before long,  the house next-door became very lively, with a never-ending stream of visitors–both male and female.  The females were young, shapely, and wore revealing clothing.  We don’t know for sure what went on in that house, but we were pretty sure a lot of  it had to do with sex and drugs.  The girl who looked like Cher?  She is now a resident in a nursing home, a victim of her lifestyle choices.

The little house across the street was a hub of excitement, as well. It was the home of a middle-aged divorced woman who led an active social life, too.  Her little house can be seen in the background of the “convertible photo”.  Between the house next-door, the house across the street, and the “main strip”, there was always plenty of activity in our neighborhood!  My parents spent a lot of time peeking out of the windows!

my parents, relaxing in the backyard...daddy's garden is in the background

I married and moved away in 1972.  I left all of the neighborhood excitement behind.  My parents bought a house in a quieter neighborhood,  a couple of streets over, in 1973.  Somehow, their new house never felt like home to me. 

I used to ride by the old house and remember…I have lots of good memories of living in that house.  Some fun family Christmases in the living room, playing with my Barbies in the floor for hours,  getting my first kiss from Ed while standing on the front porch!  Spending fun times with friends in my bedroom–while watching the cars going by on “the strip”.  Gathering vegetables from daddy’s garden or sprawling out in a lawn chair in the backyard to get a suntan.  Good times, gone but not forgotten!


Published in: on July 15, 2011 at 10:44 am  Comments (6)  
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School’s Out For The Summer?!

Oh, my!  It’s barely past the middle of May, and school is already out for the summer here.  When I went to school, we attended school until after the first of June!  Years later, when I was employed at school, we still went to school until after Memorial Day.  The twist was, we didn’t go back to school until mid to late August.  These days, school is already back in session by the end of July or the first of August!  What ever happened to  the days of summer?

When I was a kid, the fourth of July pretty much signaled that summer was officially in “full swing”.  These days, by the fourth of July, “back to school” sales are already being advertised on television.  Something about this just doesn’t seem right!

When I was a kid, I sort of hated to see the school years end.  I never seemed to get  comfortable with everything until after Christmas.  It took me that long to feel at ease with my teachers and classmates. Then the inevitable always happened–school would end, and I’d have to start all over in the fall!

While I worked as a paraprofessional at school, I felt the same way.  By the latter part of the school year, I knew each student’s strength’s and weaknesses, and we all felt like family.  I knew their behavior patterns, and how to best handle them.  I’d watched them learn and grow.  Of course, by then it was almost time for school to get out for summer–which meant starting all over again!

I always loved “post planning” days at school(the days after the children are finished, but the employees aren’t).  We could wear shorts to work, and we did lots of cleaning out and throwing away in our classrooms!  Who doesn’t love a good “spring cleaning”?  Out with the old, getting ready for the new!  We also had a couple of end-of-the-year staff luncheons, which always meant GOOD FOOD!  What a wonderful treat–no cafeteria food, and longer than twenty minutes to eat!  Pure Heaven!

After three days of post-planning, I was able to go home to be with my children for the summer.  Our family filled our summers with lots of camping trips while our children were growing up.  We had a camper, and we always took two full weeks of vacation each summer.  We would camp for a week in June, then another week in July.  We didn’t usually travel very far, because none of us liked to ride.  Our trips were usually within two or three hours of home, and included state parks, the beach, and a few area tourist attractions.

We spent many happy hours swimming, fishing, riding bicycles, telling ghost stories and roasting marshmallows around campfires, playing on playgrounds, and of course, shopping!  We always did lots of shopping, usually at Wal-mart.  We had to visit every Wal-mart along the route!

I miss those sweet days.  They passed entirely too fast.  These days, those precious children, in the photos above, range in ages from thirty-two to twenty-four!  Two of them now have children of their own.  The youngest, the little one in the little raft, will be getting married in five more weeks.

These days I’m watching my family fill the summer days with activities for their own children.  Madison’s pre-school just ended last week, and she’s already been to a t-ball game, story time at the local library, and had a playdate with some little girls at my daughter-in-law’s house.  It’s already another fun summer–and it’s only mid-May!

I’m joining Java’s Friday Follow Over 40.  If you would like to participate, click her button below.

Published in: on May 20, 2011 at 9:07 am  Comments (6)  

Flashback Friday…Prom Memories

 Linda’s not hosting “Flashback Fridays” at the moment, but I’m a creature of habit, so I’ve decided to do a “Flashback” post anyway. 

In honor of juniors and seniors everywhere, who have been experiencing “Prom Time” over the past few weeks, I’m going to take a moment and post my “Prom flashback”!  Promise not to laugh at the photo!

I think I can hear some of you laughing!  When I look at the photo above, one thing comes to mind…”Big Hair”!  I didn’t especially like that hair style.  I would’ve preferred to have my hair piled high on top of my head in curls, but there was a slight problem–I was about six inches taller than my prom date!  Needless to say, I think the stylist got more than a little carried away with the teasing comb and the hairspray!

I was fourteen years old, and it was the spring of 1969.  My date was named, Guy, and we’d been dating each other for most of the winter (too young, I know).  It was Guy’s Junior Prom, so he invited me to go with him. Guy was always a little too short for me, but oh, he was so cute!  I still have bad posture from dating him.  I developed a permanent slouch, in an attempt to look shorter!

Guy went to school in a neighboring town, so we had to drive about fifteen miles to get to his school.  Proms were still held at the school in those days.  I don’t remember what the theme of the prom was, but judging from the looks of the photo, I’d say something like a fiesta???  I see sand, a cactus, and a couple of hats hanging on the wall…What’s up with the hay on the floor???

In my opinion, Prom is overrated.  It was a lot of trouble and not very much fun.  I had to have TWO dresses for this particular prom.  I had to wear a semi-formal dress for the sit-down dinner, then I had to change into a formal dress for the dance that followed the dinner!  Can you believe that?   I still remember going to a gas station restroom, and changing my dress, because I didn’t have any place else to change!

The next problem was the fact that I didn’t know anyone at this Prom, other than my date, and I was painfully shy.  I remember sitting quietly through that horrible sit-down dinner, changing into my formal dress in a nasty gas station restroom, then going to the dance–with a boy who didn’t like to dance!  So we sat, then we sat some more!

Guy’s Uncle Harold, who was just a few years older than us, was also at the dance  Now that I think about it, I really don’t know why he was there.  He must have been somebody’s date–or not!  Maybe he was a chaperone, who knows!  Anyway, after a while, Guy’s Uncle Harold asked me to dance with him–and so I did!

That one dance with “Uncle Harold” turned out to be the highlight of the entire evening!  It was a fast dance, and we had so much fun out on the dance floor, but Guy got jealous–and then he got mad!  He pitched a fit, and we ended up leaving the dance.  We spent the rest of the evening arguing because I danced a fast dance with “Uncle Harold”!

Guy and I didn’t see each other very much after Prom.  It was the beginning of the end for us.  I met my hubby-to-be about four months later, during the summer of 1969.  Do you know what?  He didn’t especially like to dance either, but he danced with me anyway.  I guess you could say he danced his way right into my heart!

As for my prom date, Guy, he’s a confirmed bachelor…he’s never been married after all these years!  Occasionally, I’ve seen him around town, and we’ve talked a bit.  He’s aged well, but he hasn’t gotten any taller! (I, on the other hand, grew a bit more)   

I never went to another prom.  Our schools were integrated in 1970, and proms were suspended for a few years, due to fears of racial tension here in the south.  By the time proms were held again, I’d already graduated from high school.  I really didn’t mind though.  I don’t think I missed a thing!

Published in: on May 13, 2011 at 8:15 am  Comments (4)  

Friday Flashback…Wedding Memories

 Today’s Royal Wedding of William and Kate has prompted Linda to ask us to write about our wedding memories from “the good ole’ days”.  This may be a tough challenge–I don’t have a lot of other wedding experience!

First of all, my family didn’t attend many weddings while I was growing up.  I’m not sure why, but I think  it was because weddings weren’t as big of a deal back then. Oh, some people had large weddings, but I think many more had small ceremonies, or simply got married at the courthouse.

The earliest union that I remember, but wasn’t able to attend, was the wedding of my brother to his high school sweetheart.  He lived out-of-state at the time, and if my memory serves me correctly, I don’t believe our family even had a car at the time.  I was only nine years old when he got married, so I never knew any of the wedding details.  I just remember that he got married, and none of his family was present, which to me is very sad, but this story has a happy ending–My brother and his wife just celebrated their forty-seventh anniversary last October. 

The first wedding that I remember attending was that of my first cousin.  It was a large, formal, church wedding.  I attended the wedding with my husband-to-be, while we were dating.  I attended because the groom was my cousin, while my hubby-to-be attended because the bride was his neighbor!  It was a beautiful wedding, and I was in awe.  I was  devastated a few years later when the couple got divorced.

I’ve only been in one wedding, other than my own.  I was a bridesmaid for one of my girl cousins when I was a teenager.  This particular cousin and I were very close during our teen years, and our husbands-to-be were friends, too.  I was honored, but scared to death about being in her wedding. 

I can still remember the dress that I wore in the wedding.  It was a long, mint green dress, made from “dotted swiss” fabric.  It had long ribbons stitched down the front of it.  The headpiece was a little white crown with a mini veil.  

My most vivid memory of that wedding day was having to stand in the “receiving line”, and thinking that it would never end! ( I made a vow to myself that day that I would NOT be having a receiving line when I got married, and I didn’t!)  I’m pleased to announce that this couple will be celebrating their forty-first wedding anniversary in June!

The next wedding that hubby-to-be and  I attended was the wedding of a couple,  who were both friends of ours. Their wedding was a very small wedding ceremony, I think they each had one attendant.  It wasn’t anything fancy, in fact, it was very simple.  There wasn’t a lot of music, flowers, or food, but something about the ceremony impressed me so much that day! I found myself thinking, this is the kind of wedding that I want!  The day was more about the couple being joined in marriage–not  so much about attendants, flowers, or food. 

I stayed true to my beliefs, and that was the kind of wedding that my husband and I had, just two years later.  A maid of honor, a best man, two baskets of flowers, no singing, a wedding cake, some punch, and NO receiving line!  My parents spent a grand total of three hundred dollars on the wedding, and we were all happy!

Sometimes I watch a show called “Rich Bride, Poor Bride”, and I am appalled!  There seems to be no limit to the amount of money some people are willing to spend on a wedding!  I can’t help but wonder how many of those marriages actually survive past the honeymoon.  If today’s couples would put half as much effort into maintaining the marriage, as they do in planning those elaborate weddings, today’s divorce rate wouldn’t be so high!

As I watch my youngest son and his bride-to-be,  planning and preparing for their wedding, I  hope and pray that the two of them will keep firmly in mind what the wedding day is really all about.  It’s not so much about the wedding, but more about their marriage, and the beginning of their life-long journey together, as husband and wife.  I wish them much happiness and success on their journey!

Published in: on April 29, 2011 at 9:33 am  Comments (8)  

Easter Memories…

Easter is a time to reflect and remember… that through His death, burial, and resurrection, Jesus paid the price for me, a sinner, that I might have eternal life in heaven.  Attending an Easter sunrise service is a moving experience.  Watching the early morning darkness fade away, as the sun begins to rise in the East…Gathering with other believers to sing, pray, and rejoice… because He lives!  Christ Jesus lives today!  This is what Easter is really about! 

But Easter is also a time to remember all of the happy times spent in the past with grandparents, parents, and children…We soon realize how quickly children grow up, and how quickly parents grow old, and pass away.  Where does the time go?  

Easter is also a time to spend with our loved ones, making lots of wonderful new Easter memories–like visiting the nearest mall, and having a photograph made on the lap of  The Easter Bunny!

And if you’re not brave enough to sit with The Easter Bunny, you can always pose with his decorative scenery…

Easter is a time to gather at church…for the annual Easter Egg Hunt–a timeless tradition!  A chance to eat grilled hotdogs, and lots of Easter goodies…with your family!

  A chance to watch the grandchildren hunting for eggs on the same church grounds that their parents did while growing up!

Easter means gathering the family together to color Easter eggs.  God has blessed our family with a new generation, called “grandchildren”, to help color those eggs!

Coloring Easter eggs with children, also means getting as much egg dye on our hands as we do on the eggs…but it’s so much fun!

Easter can mean having someone searching for the perfect Easter outfit for you…and having your mom put it on you on Easter morning–whether you want to wear it or not!

It also means having to pose for Easter pictures…when you’re really not in the mood, because you’d really rather tear into your Easter basket… 

Easter sometimes means getting to decorate an egg tree with the neighbors–who also happen to be family!  Family makes the best kind of neighbors.  They’re always there when you need them…

Easter means stuffing and hiding lots of eggs for…the young, and the young-at-heart!  How many eggs are too many?

Easter means getting to eat all of those Easter eggs, as well as other Easter goodies!  Deviled eggs, anyone???

And last of all, Easter means that it’s time for the annual “Easter Family Photo”, and the challenge of trying to get everybody to look nice at the same time…A difficult task, at best!

See what I mean?  I told you so… Have a blessed and happy Easter, everyone  🙂

Published in: on April 21, 2011 at 11:59 pm  Comments (12)  

Flashback Friday…How Does Your Garden Grow?


Whenever I saw Linda’s topic for today was “gardening”, I knew I had to write a post!  Linda’s beginning rhyme was “Mary, Mary!  Quite contrary!  How does your garden grow?”  My answer is–“It doesn’t!”  My husband and I aren’t worth a flip at growing much of anything, but our parents loved to grow things, for as long as we can remember.  Our mothers loved growing all kinds of flowers, while our daddies grew vegetables in their gardens.  Ed’s dad was actually a farmer, and grew crops to sell in his younger years.

Oddly enough, my parents never lived on a farm when I was growing up, but always managed to live in a house, in town, that had enough space in the backyard for a vegetable garden.  Daddy always found someone with a tractor,  to “harrow up” his garden, and get it ready to plant in the spring, then daddy tended the garden using a push plow the rest of the year.  He always managed to grow enough vegetables to feed our family for an entire year.  You could say he definitely had a green thumb, and one of the prettiest gardens around!

daddy mowing the grass...his garden is to the right (early 80s)

While I was growing up, and beyond, every summer was spent picking tomatoes, all kinds of peas, butter beans, squash, green beans, and corn, then “canning” or freezing the vegetables.  We shelled our peas and beans by hand.  Sometimes my maternal grandmother, would come and help us shell our peas.  After we got our peas and beans shelled, we blanched them, and put them in our freezer.

We always put our green beans in jars, then blanched them in a large canner.  We could only do seven quarts at a time though, so it was a slow process.  Sometimes we did the same thing with tomatoes, but most of the time we just put our tomatoes in the freezer after stewing them down a bit, then letting them cool.

my grandmother and mama (see the houseplants)

I hated canning corn the most!  Removing it from the cobb is such a messy job.  The juice from the kernels goes everywhere while it’s being cut off the cobb, and corn juice is sticky!  Mama always took some corn on the cobb, blanched it, and put it in the freezer whole.  Whenever she took it out of the freezer and boiled it, the corn tasted like it had just been picked!  I’ve never been able to freeze corn on the cobb like mama could!

After I married my husband, our parents became good friends.  Both families had vegetable gardens, and  in the summer, all of us would sometimes gather and “put up” vegetables together. We’d have a great time talking and joking while getting the work done.  Our parents shared their vegetables with each other, too.  Those sure were some great times! 

Mama had a green thumb, but she used her talents to grow all kinds of plants and flowers.  She had an abundance of flowers inside and out in the yard, during her younger years.  Mama was always “rooting” something, as was my mother-in-law.  I’m sharing a photograph of me and my daughter, standing in mama and daddy’s rose garden.

me and my daughter posing in the rose garden in 1980 (garden in background)

  A couple of years ago, I ran into the woman who used to live next-door to my parents, many years ago.  She lived in the mobile home that you see in some of the photos in this post.  This woman told me how my mama had taught her how to grow plants and flowers, and how much fun she had learning from mama.  It made my heart feel good to hear her say such nice things about mama, but at the same time it made me sad.

You see, I never cared much for growing flowers as a young adult, so I missed out on that wealth of knowledge that my mama could have shared with me, as she had with her neighbor.  To this day, I can kill a houseplant faster than you can say “boo”!

My daddy’s been gone for nearly twenty years now, while mama’s been gone nearly fourteen years.  How I miss those garden fresh vegetables that he used to grow!  I also miss the good times we used to have out in the garden picking those peas and butter beans!  My mama had a habit of disappearing into the house in the middle of the bean picking–only to return about the time we were finishing up! 

Occasionally, I’ll ride by my parents old house, and remember the good old days. It’s been more than twenty years since anyone grew a garden there, and all of the rose bushes have long been gone.  That mobile home that used to be next door, isn’t there anymore.  I sure do miss the good old days…

Speaking of the good old days, today would’ve been my daddy’s birthday.  He would’ve turned 85.

Published in: on April 15, 2011 at 7:23 am  Comments (11)  
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Flashback Friday…In The News

I want to begin today’s post by thanking everyone for sharing their “hope chest” stories and thoughts on yesterday’s post.  I really enjoyed reading those!  It’s fun to share and compare our life experiences. I also want to remind you to enter my giveaway, if you’d like to, and haven’t already done so.

Today we’re talking about all things that were ” in the news”, back in the days when we were growing up.  I’ll be honest and admit–I had to google the 60’s to actually jog my memory, but once I read the top news stories, I began to remember watching the stories unfold on the news.


I grew up watching the news team of Chet Huntley and David Brinkley on one channel, or Walter Cronkite on the other!  Those were the days!  We only had two channels to choose from for a long time, then ABC came on board. 

I don’t ever remember being sheltered from watching the news.  In those days the news media used more discresion and didn’t furnish so many graphics and details. 

I never remember my parents subscribing to a newspaper of any kind though.  If something special was going to be in the local paper, they went to town and bought that week’s paper.

While I was growing up, in the sixties, I never realized what turbulent times they were.  So much social activism–civil rights movements, women’s rights movements were at the forefront.  The Vietnam War dominated the entire span of the sixties… talk of war, participation in war, protest of war.  On one hand, we had the peaceful demonstrating, dope smokin’ hippies  sayin’ “make love, not war”… Then there were those scary radical groups like the Black Panthers and the Weather Underground who used violence in attempting to bring about their agenda of social change!  Wow!

  I remember the Vietnam War always being in the news.  I remember when the draft was first started, and I remember my brother getting called up to serve in the army.  I also remember watching the nightly news to find out what was happening in the war each night while my brother was in Vietnam.  I remember the nightly “body counts” being given on the news.  Those were some tense times for our family, and it was a relief when our loved-one came home safe and sound.

On the flip side of the Vietnam War, I remember seeing the war protestors on the news, as well as the draft dodgers who burned their draft cards and fled to Canada.  I couldn’t understand how those men could desert our country, while  two of the men I loved most in the world had gone to serve…  

I remember watching as John Glen became to first astronaut to totally orbit the earth.  I think I was in the first or second grade, and I was in awe…  I was just entering high school when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, again I was in awe.  Space travel has always amazed me!

The news event that most stands out foremost in my mind was the assassination of  President Kennedy in 1963!  To this day, I remember sitting in my fourth grade classroom when the announcement was made that President Kennedy had been shot.  That would never happen in school these days.  I remember when 9-11 happened, I was working at our local elementary school.  We were instructed not let the students know that anything had happened, even though all hell was breaking loose in New York.  My how times have changed! 

In googling the sixties, I discovered one bit of news which happened that I don’t remember hearing about.  Perhaps it was on the news and I didn’t understand what they were talking about, because I would’ve only been about age six.  Remembering how discreet the media was back then, I can’t help but wonder how they broke the news of “the introduction of the birth control pill”! 

In honor of this bit of “life-changing” news for women, and in the closing of this “in the news” post, I’ll leave you with a song by Loretta Lynn.  One thing about Loretta Lynn, she tells things exactly like she sees them!  Apparently, her song caused quite a stir in its day, with some radio stations refusing to play it.!  Have a great weekend y’all…

Published in: on March 25, 2011 at 8:26 am  Comments (5)