In Memory of Pearl Harbor


Dearest Readers:

I would like to take a moment of time, a moment of silence, in memory of Pearl Harbor Day. Today, December 7, 2016 is the 75th anniversary of the attack at Pearl Harbor, in Hawaii.

I’ve visited Hawaii twice. Both times, I wanted to tour the memorial; however, it was closed for renovations, improvements, etc. The military holds a special significance inside my heart. I remember studying about the Pearl Harbor attack in history class. One of my class projects was about Pearl Harbor. Although my teacher gave me an A+, and she read my project to the class, she refused to return my project.  This was back in the days of typewriters, not computers. What is a typewriter, you might ask? Before computers and keyboarding typing was a subject in high school. I am thankful I learned to type the correct way, not the hunt, punch, pecking order most people use now.

Reportedly, according to my husband, his father was stationed on the USS Arizona. He survived. Although I met my father-in-law, never did I hear him speak about Pearl Harbor Day and his survival. He didn’t speak much at all, that is, until he was so drunk one could not understand his speech. I honestly do not know what it was like to live at that time, or to see Japanese planes attacking, burning, and destroying beautiful Hawaii, the USS Arizona and other ships and killing so many of our military. Some of the family say my father-in-law drank so much because of Pearl Harbor. I have my doubts about that statement, simply because my father-in-law was quick to blame others for any of his betrayals, deceptions and life in general.

Posted below is a site I discovered while researching about Pearl Harbor. http://www.history.com/news/5-facts-about-pearl-harbor-and-the-uss-arizona

Reading that site, I discovered Elvis Presley helped raise $50,000 in funds for the memorial back in March, 1961. Truly a site worthy of reading, just to learn a bit more about Pearl Harbor.

Twenty-three sets of brothers died on the USS Arizona. One full set of brothers, Kenneth and Russell Warriner, survived the attack. You can read about them by visiting the site: http://triblive.com/news/editorspicks/7193335-74/harbor-pearl-kralik

There is much that is written about Pearl Harbor. One interesting topic is the fact that our military veterans rarely talk about their experiences. Reportedly, “The total number of military personnel killed was 2,335, including 2,008 navy personnel, 109 marines, and 218 army. Added to this were 68 civilians, making the total 2403 people dead. 1,177 were from the USS Arizona.” https://visitpearlharbor.org/faqs/how-many-people-died-at-pearl-harbor-during-the-attack/

To all of you who know about Pearl Harbor Day, especially those who had relatives you lost due to these attacks, I would like to thank you for serving your country, or for knowing someone who served during this time. Daily, we lose World War II veterans. Some of those veterans I have had the pleasure of meeting on occasions, and when I see someone wearing a World War II Veteran cap, I give them a hug and say thank you.

Today, I honor all of them by writing a bit about Pearl Harbor Day. On December 7, 1941 at 7:55am, the attack began. East coast time was 12:55pm. I have set my IPhone to alarm me at 12:55pm today. I will share a moment of silence and prayer for the day which “began in infamy.” http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/5166

As we make plans to celebrate the holidays, let us remember Pearl Harbor…9-11… and all of the battles the USA sent our precious military to fight for our freedom, including Viet Nam. To our military, I pray for you daily. I thank you for your dedication to America. May we never forget those we’ve lost.

In memory of Pearl Harbor Day I salute and thank all of you. May God bless our country.

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The evening sunset in Hawaii

 

 

 

 

Moving On — With Weight Watchers…


Dearest Readers:

I apologize for not posting much this month. Let’s just say, it’s been a most unusual month for me, starting with getting so frustrated with weight loss, the holidays and my lack of interest in losing weight, combined with a cruise we took on the Carnival Fantasy. I promised myself I would be good on the cruise…the reality is – I’m human and I blew it big time! Arriving home from the cruise I hopped on the scales and almost cried. A ten pound gain! Yes, I beat myself up — not physically, just mentally…and then, I decided it was time to return to Weight Watchers and face the music.

From January 8 – January 13, we were cruising from the Charleston, SC port to Freeport and the Bahamas. Every day, I ate breakfast, ever so careful of what I ate. Fruit. Cheese omelet. No toast. Coffee. When I tried to log in to e-tools of Weight Watchers, I could not — unless I wanted to pay the outrageous rates for “Cellular by the sea.” I got lazy. Never writing any of my food intake in my journal. Lazy…LAZY…just downright a Lazy Lion. After all, I was on vacation! At lunch, I treated myself to cheeseburgers and fruit and — the dreaded — french fries!

I said a prayer that God would motivate me. He replied it was time for me to find my motivation, and so I did. On the cruise, I took the stairs most of the time, clocking over 500 steps in five days. Yes, occasionally, I huffed and puffed on the stairs, but I refused to stop. Breathing a bit heavily (thanks to asthma) I refused to give up. I did the jogging track, walking 15 laps – daily, with exception of the day it rained. Back at home, I hopped on the treadmill, increasing the speed and incline. I huffed and puffed my way with a newfound determination. I was so angry and disappointed with myself.

Although Weight Watchers does not encourage it, I weighed daily, watching those dreaded pounds decreasing! “Eureka,” I shouted to myself. My four-legged friends popped their heads up to see why I was so excited. Those uninvited pounds were going away! I was so proud.

Today, I decided it was time to face the music completely, get on the scales at Weight Watchers and get rededicated to my new healthy eating weight loss style. “Hello, NordicTrack…You are now my best friend.”

Using the treadmill five days last week, I think I actually heard it moaning from overworking. I suppose that treadmill had a nice rest while I was out-of-town, and now, I am a workout queen!

Arriving at Weight Watchers this morning, I could not find my weekly pass booklet, so I opened e-tools to show I was a member. Believe me, everyone at Weight Watchers knows this ‘totally shy and reserved’ woman that I am not, so they were happy to see me returning to face the music. My weight gain that was over ten pounds? Now, according to Weight Watchers, it is only a 2.2 pound gain! Think I’ll do a happy dance, just to get a few more steps and movements going!

WHAT IS IT ABOUT THE HOLIDAYS AND WEIGHT LOSS/GAINS?

According to Weight Watchers, the average gain of a person during the holidays is only one pound. Okay…So, I’m not an average person – or normal! I am me. Determined. Stubborn, Opinionated and Gregarious. I simply LOVE being the center of attention. Anyone who knows me can attest to that statement!

This year, even though I told myself I would not gain — I would lose, and on the cruise, I would not gain — I sabotaged myself! Like most women who cook during the holidays, I found myself nibbling and not counting those infamous “B-L-T’s.” BITES…LICKS…and TASTES. I baked cookies and cakes. Some of you who read my blog regularly might remember two years ago when I went on a binge with “Christmas cookies.” I do not know what caused me to be so weak during the holidays of 2014, but something certainly sent me on a downward spin. I am so happy that I had a talk with myself, telling myself I could not afford to gain ten pounds, and I could not afford to quit Weight Watchers.

Today was a good day for me. Although at Weight Watchers it appears that I only gained 2.2 pounds. The reality is since last week I have lost eight pounds!

Yes, I am using that NordicTrack and I’m certain it is a bit tired from all the workout…and I do aerobics, so I am back on the move — ready to attack this year of 2015 with a force. I do plan to make my goal weight this year and become a Lifetime member of Weight Watchers. Will I accomplish this?

Don’t laugh! Of course I will. After all, I am a stubborn, opinionated, determined woman who does not believe in the word No! Think I’ve proven that over the holidays and at the cruise. No is not an option! This I WILL achieve!

You JUST WAIT!

DREAM…

BELIEVE…

ACHIEVE…

My bracelet reminds me of this daily. After all, today is a new day…and I AM BACK!

Merry Christmas to All!


Dearest Readers:

Merry Christmas! Today is the day to give thanks to the world for our Savior and his birth. May your day be filled with many blessings. Much love, and much thankfulness.

To our troops away from home, I say thank you…for your service to our Country…thank you for dedicating your life to the missions and I hope you have a Merry Christmas while away.

I remember the Christmas my husband was away, fighting a war that America refused to support. It was a lonely, sad year for me, and the saddest of Christmas holidays. No e-mail existed. No cell phones. The only communication we had were letters that took 10 days to arrive…an additional 10 days for a reply. Somehow we survived those sad times and each year, I give thanks that we have celebrated another Christmas holiday together.

For me, it is the little things that matter during this holiday season. A smile from a stranger. A nod. A simple “Hello,” or “Merry Christmas.” Those simple, kind moments mean the world to me.

If you are alone at Christmas, make a phone call to a friend. If you have family or loved ones in nursing homes, make the time to visit. Just take one moment from the ‘busy-ness’ of the day to say three words, “I Love You!”

In life, we never know how long we will live. We awaken to a new day, procrastinating until tomorrow for simple things we should do daily. Please take the time and reach out to someone who is alone or lonely during this Christmas holiday season.

Merry Christmas, from our home to yours. God has blessed us with this day. Let us make the most of every moment at Christmas and always! Merry Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas


Dearest Readers:

This is the week of the Christmas holidays. A time to give thanks and to celebrate with friends and family. I would like to wish all of you a joyous and Happy Holiday Season — a Merry Christmas season.

This is the first Christmas season I can recall people actually saying, “Merry Christmas,” instead of “Happy Holidays” in a long, LONG time. Years ago when I worked in retail, we the employees were sent memos that we could no longer say “Merry Christmas,” since that phrase offends some people. I read the memo and tossed it in the trash.

“No one, including the company I work for will dictate to me what I can say,” so I said Merry Christmas to every customer. Never did I get a complaint.

This is The United States of America. Home of the free and brave. Home where we can speak what we wish to speak — and so I say to all reading this during the Christmas holidays — Merry Christmas.

No, I’m not officially ready for Christmas. I still have gifts to wrap. Goodies to bake. The table to set, and dinner to prepare. Church to attend. This is probably the only free moment I will have to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. As soon as I complete this blog post, I must change clothes and get the house prepared. You know the scenario — dust the furniture. Vacuum. Clean bathrooms…etc. Etc….ETC!

Tonight after dinner I am baking cookies. A tradition I broke years ago. Now those traditions are oh so important to me.

Hubby and I will have a quiet Christmas Day with two friends and of course, our special family — our pups.

To our military families, I do hope you get to speak with your loved ones who are away during this time. I can relate to the loneliness and sadness of having a loved one away since my husband was away at war during our first Christmas season. Fortunately, we’ve spent many Christmas holidays together now and we do our best to give thanks and to be appreciative of the love we share during the Christmas season.

Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones. I hope you will make the day special. Give thanks to God for all that we have, and all that we are…and above all, Please continue to say “Merry Christmas.” Such a beautiful, melodic phrase.

Merry Christmas to all…and now, I must crank up that silly vacuum cleaner. Ho Hum! If only Santa would do it, instead of me.

Merry Christmas!

Reflections…At Christmas Time


Christmas   Is…

 Dearest Readers:

Yes, it is the Christmas season. A time to give thanks and be appreciative for all that we are, and all that we have. A time to celebrate the birth of CHRIST…a time to recognize that IF we did not have the ‘birth of Christ’ as the reason for the season, we would not be celebrating Christmas.

Perhaps that is one of the reasons for this editorial. I cannot tell you how many times I hear good wishes, such as “Happy Holidays.” My response is a quick, “Merry Christmas to you too.” On one occasion while shopping, the employee look stunned at me when I said, “Merry Christmas.”

“We can’t say that,” she replied. “We can only say Happy Holidays.”

“But…this is America. The land of the free. We can express anything here in America.”

She looked down at the floor. “We can only say “Happy Holidays.”

I recall when I worked in the retail sales industry and we were told it was better to say “Happy Holidays,” than to express “Merry Christmas,” after all, we did not want to offend anyone. The philosophy at the department store was that Happy Holidays covered all of the holidays. Still, I expressed, “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,” covering both. I didn’t care that I might offend someone. If they were shopping for the holidays, then I wished them a Merry Christmas.

I remembered my grandmother and how furious she got when she read “Merry Xmas.” “That isn’t Christmas,” she expressed. “They’re leaving Christ out of Christmas.” As a child I didn’t fully understand what she was saying. Now older and wiser, I do understand and I make certain I write Christmas, not Xmas. I will not leave Christ out of Christmas.

I do not believe that I am the most religious person in the world, but I do believe in Christ and I believe I am a Christian. I do my best to be a good person, and to treat others as I wish to be treated. Of course, I am human, and at times, I am just a bit opinionated, as you will read in this epistle! Yes, I am a feminist and an advocate against domestic abuse of all types. I look for the good in everyone and I believe that everyone in life has a purpose; however, I believe that when we make mistakes, we must admit them, apologize and rise above the controversy or pain we caused to others. Everyone deserves a second chance. We must make the most of every day and live life to its fullest. I attempt to treat everyone as an equal and I do not understand that IF America is the land of the free, where we can express our words freely, then we should be able to keep Christ in Christmas, and by saying Merry Christmas, there should not be any offense to anyone.

Let’s consider Christmas:

C Christmas, a time to Celebrate and to share our love with others. Most of all, Christmas is the celebration of the birth of the Christ child. A time for change and growth within our lives.

HHope. Something our entire world needs now more than ever. Hope for the future.Hope for peace.

R –<ins Reflection. A time to reflect on who we are, where we are going, and what we are doing in our daily lives.

IIntegrity. Everyone needs to strive to have more integrity for ourselves, and for others.

SSalvation.

TTime. We need to share more of our time, especially quality time with our loved ones. We need to make time to shut down or unplug the technology and to share quality time without interruptions.

M – Making the most of each day while recognizing that life is short and we should appreciate those who are important in our lives.

AAdoration. Appreciation.

S – Simplicity.

Last year, during the Christmas holidays, I was sick. Dreadfully ill with acute bronchitis. My body lacked energy. Every breath was a struggle. My oxygen level was ‘less than 85,’ and I was told to get plenty of rest. Resting was not a problem. Throughout the day, I rested in bed, watching Lifetime and Hallmark channel Christmas movies until I could almost recite the dialogue of each movie. When the phone rang, I ignored it. I told my friends to simply let me rest. I suppose it is easy to say I basically shut the world away as I drank coffee, took my pills, coughed my head off, struggled to breathe and to rest. I was miserable. My precious schnauzers could not understand why they were tucked inside the gated community of the breakfast room while I sauntered ever so slowly towards the bedroom. Housework was ignored. My stove actually got so dusty I could write my initials on it. My Christmas holidays were a time of reflection. For weeks I wondered IF I would ever get well. What did I learn during this time?

I must say, my husband was my angel during this time. You must remember, my husband has PTSD. When things do not go as he anticipates, let’s just say, he can be a real grumpy bear of a man. Never did he ask me to do anything at home, with exception of resting and getting well. I recognized my neglect of my home and him when he asked me during the week if I could teach him how to do the laundry. He glanced at me, apologizing to bother me saying, “I’m out of clean underwear and shirts.”

Just how long had it been since I did laundry? Glancing at the calendar I realized this illness began in late October. The calendar staring back at me was December. It was time to do laundry!

Life is precious. It is to be cherished with those we love and we should make the most of every day we live. After all, we never know when the wheels of life may turn and we never know when Father Time may start ticking away. Last Christmas, I didn’t shop, at all! My life and health was in a fog, so I learned that Christmas should not be a time to rush around. It is a time to reflect and to appreciate.

Christmas time is a great time to change our lives. To celebrate and appreciate our loved ones, freedom and the belief and faith we have.

So many of us get wrapped up in the hustle, bustle of the holiday season. We rush to get to the next social event. We rush to get our families prepared for the holidays, and we rush to complete our shopping. Maybe we should slow down and appreciate life.

How many times have you seen the actions of someone during the Christmas season? The rushing in traffic. The rudeness of others? Yesterday, a driver that was behind me in a torrential rain storm decided I wasn’t going fast enough in the center lane. He drove so close to me that If I had to slam on my brakes, he would’ve rear ended me. I tapped my breaks lightly, to give him the message to back off. Instead, he swiftly changed lanes, cut me off, then tapped his break. He displayed his arrogance driving by, giving me the finger. Such a nice man!??? Perhaps a new and tormented “Mr. Scrooge!” Yes, he sent me a message and I hope wherever he was headed in the rain storm, I do hope and pray he made it without causing an accident.

It is my perception that we should slow down and appreciate life, especially during the Christmas rush season. Perhaps while shopping, we could stop and smile at someone. How many times have you noticed someone with a frown on their face? Maybe if you said hello to that person it might change their perspective. Have you ever visited a nursing home at the holidays? There are so many people there who never have a visitor and during the Christmas season they do not receive mail, phone calls, or visits. These residents deserve to have a happy holiday season. I have added a few to my Christmas letter list and I enclose a Christmas card with the letter. My hope is to put a smile on someone’s face during the holidays. After all, Christmas is the reason for the season.

My Christmas wish for all of you reading this is one of simplicity. May you appreciate your family and friends while taking the time to realize Christmas is a time to share your love to others and to man kind. May you never get so busy with the demands of your life that you forget to smile and say hello. May you not over indulge with the spirits of the season, the foods, and the gift giving that you forget the true meaning of Christmas. May you stop for a moment, inhale, exhale and say, “Merry Christmas” with a smile on your face.

Merry Christmas to all, and may God bless us – EVERYONE!

Little things mean a lot, especially at Christmas.

Thanksgiving, 2014


Dearest Readers:

Thanksgiving is celebrated in the USA in two days, Thursday, November 27, 2014. Because it is always a busy day for me, I would like to take a moment to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving.

Tomorrow I begin the process of the infamous Thanksgiving meal – prepping, baking and getting the table set with my china, crystal and silverware. After losing my dad in July 1999, I still have an emptiness deep in my heart, missing him so much. It was a tradition for us to celebrate Thanksgiving together. He enjoyed the fuss I made over him, and over Thanksgiving. I should say I make everything from scratch. I do not believe in using processed foods, and if I say so myself, I am a decent chef! Never do I use paper plates or plastic. For that special day, I enjoy the best that I have.

This year my menus is:

Roasted turkey
Cornbread dressing
Macaroni and cheese
Green bean casserole
Mashed potatoes
Gravy
Cranberry Relish

Dessert:
Pecan pie (I’ve never baked one so this will be a first!)
Cream cheese pound cake, served with fresh strawberries and Cool Whip

Today, I am busy polishing furniture, preparing for guests and cleaning the fridge — how I dread that ordeal!

What does Thanksgiving mean to you? For our family, it is a time to give thanks for all that we have, the people in our lives and a Thanksgiving to give God thankfulness and gratitude for our lives. This year is a good year for this household. Yes, we are missing a few of our loved ones, but we are happy that we’ve celebrated many Thanksgiving holidays together. Unfortunately, our first Thanksgiving as a newly married couple, I kissed my husband goodbye while knowing he was leaving me for a war zone. The next Thanksgiving, I prepared a feast, anticipating his arrival. He did not arrive until December 5, of that year, so Thanksgiving means a lot to us. It is a time to share our love with each other and with our family members. Perhaps one year we will get together with my sister in Georgia — but that is for another time. If it does happen, I will be more than happy to cook the entire meal.

How about you, readers? What do you do for Thanksgiving? I pray you will celebrate the festivities with your family and friends, and I pray that you will give thanks for all you are blessed with in life. No doubt, our extended family of five precious animals will enjoy a bit of turkey and dressing.

Let us all give thanks for the United States of America, especially to our soldiers in harm’s way. May this day of Thanksgiving bring us peace. Please, if you are traveling, be safe and if you see a soldier, please tell them thank you for their service. If you are a soldier, I say thank you and may God bless you, and all of us.

And now, I must close this and clean the fridge.

Happy, Blessed Thanksgiving to All!

Grammy’s Heavenly Homemade Biscuits – Chattahoochee Child


Yesterday while reading an e-mail from an online writers’ group, I discovered a food writing contest. The directions discussed a contest for Thanksgiving. The assignment was to share a family recipe for the holidays. Humph. I thought. I don’t have any family recipes to share.

That assignment for a contest got me thinking; nevertheless, I cannot enter the competition, simply because the recipe I would share would be Grammy’s homemade biscuits.

My Grammy was a good ole’ Southern cook, rarely did she measure anything. Her recipes were never written on index cards for others to share or to preserve for family members. A tiny woman, with long white hair, early every morning she rolled her hair up in a crochet hair bun, clipping the left and right with wavy clips. Spraying the hair with a light spray, she was ready for the day. No makeup or fancy earrings did she wear. She was a natural beauty with bright, beautiful blue eyes.

Grammy encouraged me to help her in the kitchen. “Always remember to wash your hands several times when cooking,” she said. Only 10 years old, I remember stepping up on a chair to watch her make baked goods, especially her homemade biscuits. Grammy had a special large pottery bowl only used for baked goods. In this bowl, she placed all-purpose flour, Grammy preferred Gold Medal Flour, baking powder, a bit of salt, shortening, Grammy preferred Crisco, and milk.

I watched my grandmother carefully; curious as to how she knew just the right ingredients to use to bake the light as a cloud, fluffy hot biscuits she made daily. Never did she measure the ingredients. Never did she make a mistake.

“Grammy,” I said, watching her fingers moving the ingredients into a soft, moist mixture that rolled into one soft ball of dough, ready to pinch off and pat into a cast iron skillet. “How do you know how much to use? You always make the best biscuits. They melt in my mouth.”

Grammy laughed. “I just know.”

“But you don’t measure anything. If I tried to make these, how would I know?”

Grammy laughed again, her blue eyes almost dancing with delight.

“Well child, I suppose I’ll share my recipe.”

Grammy’s Homemade Biscuits
“Use a large pottery bowl that you only use for biscuits.
Place a bunch of flour in the bowl. If you are making biscuits for our group, a family of 10, then you place a lot of all-purpose flour in the bowl.
Add a pinch of baking powder.
A dash of salt.
Shortening. I always use only Crisco, and if I’m baking biscuits for all of us, including Rusty, I use more Crisco and more ingredients.
Milk. I don’t like it real cold. I let it get a bit warmer before I use it. I let it sit out for about five minutes before I pour it in. Before I pour it in, I make a well with the ingredients with my fingers and I pour the milk into the well. Then I mix it all up.
I have the oven ready by letting it heat up a bit. The temperature is warm, about 400 degrees when I put the biscuits in the oven. My secret to get golden biscuits is to roll a bit of the dough in your hands to make the shape and size you want and place each biscuit in the pan. Pat each biscuit in the skillet with milk. That helps them to get golden brown and stay moist.”

I listened and listened while wondering what a bunch of flour was. A pinch of baking powder. A dash of salt. Enough Crisco for all of us, including Rusty? And – just HOW would the biscuit bowl KNOW it was only used for biscuits, nothing more?

I shook my head. I would never be able to bake Grammy’s homemade biscuits.

When I was a teenager, our family fell apart. My mother and father divorced. Mom moved us back to Bibb City, to live with our grandparents. Cramped together in a small brick mill house with only two bedrooms, one bathroom, and a tiny kitchen, I chose to devote my time to cooking. I asked Grammy to teach me how to bake biscuits. Following her directions, I scooped up a bunch of flour. My fingers pinched the baking powder. I shook the salt shaker, hoping to get just a dash of salt to make my biscuits as fluffy and tasty as Grammy’s. I took a large measuring cup filled with Crisco, plopping it into the well of the flour mixture. And then, my fingers worked their magic, pouring in just enough milk to make the ingredients work together into a magical ball. The ball my mixture made was lumpy and dry.

Working my fingers around the well of dough, I hoped and prayed my mixture would follow the lead of Grammy. I moved my fingers strategically, just like Grammy. The mixture refused to follow my lead.

“Grammy,” I said. “My biscuit dough doesn’t move around the bowl like yours did. What did I do wrong?”

Grammy looked at the table, noticing the measuring cups.

“I don’t measure, child. I just scoop it all up in my fingers.”

“Oh…but how…how do you know what a bunch of flour, a pinch of baking powder, a dash of salt and enough Crisco is? Did I mix too much milk in my well?”

She laughed. “You just know child. Don’t fret none. It’ll come to you.”

For two more days I attempted to learn how to bake Grammy’s homemade biscuits. On my last attempt, Grammy suggested I stick with baking my homemade pound cakes. A Betty Crocker recipe, I make those pound cakes every year, and each time I do how I wish I had my Grammy’s vintage pottery bowl.

I lost my grandmother to breast cancer in 1973. Unfortunately, her recipe for homemade biscuits vanished with her death. Today, I suppose it is to my benefit that I do not have that delicious recipe, or her magical vintage bowl. One can only imagine how such recipes require willpower, just to abstain from eating them – at every meal.

I have no idea what happened to that beautiful biscuit bowl. Never did I receive anything tangible in remembrance of my precious grandmother. I do hope someone in the family has it, although I doubt it. My mother had the tendency to take such precious items to antique shops to sell. Perhaps the next time I go ‘antiquing’ I will search for such a bowl. If my memory is correct, the bowl was an off-white color, deep with two blue bands across the width of the bowl. A bit heavy for a young child, but I cherished that bowl, along with my grandmother.

During the holidays I still crave my grandmother’s homemade biscuits. No one that I know has ever been able to equal her magic recipe. I suppose some recipes should remain secrets for the family to enjoy. The next time you eat a homemade biscuit, just pretend you are eating a light, golden brown biscuit – from Heaven, in memory of my Grammy!

Friday Reflections — Enough Said!


Dearest Readers:

Late autumn always depresses me when the sun sets so early and darkness blankets the skies, much…much too early. I enjoy evenings where I enjoy the sun setting later. Tomorrow evening is the Elks show in Murrells Inlet, SC. Since the show started traveling “on the road” with our talents, I have always attended. This show is different because I am not going. It was my decision to remain at home. Many reasons that others do not understand. Quite simply – my budget at this time of year is not one I want to stretch to the limits. Allow me to explain. Many of the casts are driving up tomorrow afternoon. After the show, they are going back to Charleston. Yes, it is true. I could go. And I could drive home late at night, but I don’t think so. Driving after 10:00 at night is just a bit testy, considering all of the drivers under the influence, and of course, the deer roaming around the highways. Then, I must consider, I would need to arrange a pet sitter to come to my house two, if not three times daily while I am gone — at the expense of $20.00 each visit. I do not believe in boarding my animals. They are most comfortable within their atmosphere of HOME. After all, my four-legged friends are rescue animals – four of them tolerated much abuse previously, and now, within our home, they are happy. LOVED. SPOILED. Considering all of the expenses of ‘going on the road’ for the Elks Lodge show, the amount of money it would cost us was just not worth it. While it is true, I could get a cheaper rate for a hotel, I think I made the right decision. I am the type of household finance manager who does not believe in tapping into the budget, squeezing it too tightly. After all, the holidays are approaching! I do wish the entire cast of the show to have a good time. I understand I was ridiculed when I said “Break a leg” to the cast. I got the distinct impression a few of them were thinking I was wishing them to ‘break a leg’ physically. Now honestly…Those of us who have been on stage, or a thespian truly understand the definition of “Break a leg.” Those who do not — well…let’s just say, while I am the type of personality defined as “Julia Sugarbaker,” never do I wish anything bad on anyone. SO, cast members, I still say, “Break a Leg!”

Next week is our show at the Elks Lodge in Charleston, and I still wish everyone to “Break a leg.” Enough said!

This week at Weight Watchers, my weigh-in showed another small gain. This time, .06 of a pound. RATS! After weigh-in, I turned to look at the magic mirror. Have you ever seen one of these? They instantly give you a 10-pound reduction. I want one for my home! Maybe I’ll tell Santa. Perhaps if I sit on his lap, maybe — just maybe — I can convince him I will make this generosity worthy of my talents! Looking in that mirror, I do see a difference. Heck…My body is shrinking, even IF that disagreeable scale says otherwise. I think I’m looking pretty good! I’ll say it again — RATS! I want that stupid scale to stop dictating who I am. Age is just a number, and so is a Weight Watchers scale! Enough said!

Looks like this epistle should be titled “Enough Said.” After all, I am free writing, and I have no idea what my fingers will pour from my soul as I write this. I am sitting at my desk. My little love bugs, Hanks the Tank, and Sandy Bear are resting next to me, curled on the pillows, probably getting warm. The weather is changing drastically…almost momentarily…The present temp is 42.8 degrees…OK…let’s round it up to 43! I am wearing a short black lace skirt with black leggings. Black boots! The temperature inside the house is only 69 degrees, but the house is warm, so I refuse to cut the heat on until later. Yes, I will turn on the electric blanket before going to bed. I simply love curling into a warm bed!

See…I told you, I am free writing. This week has been a better week than last. During that time, for three days, PTSD was dictating the behaviors of my husband. If you’ve never lived, or been around, someone with PTSD consider yourself blessed. Simple eye contact…body language…ANYTHING can ignite strange behaviors and when it happens in this house, I simply close myself away. I do not like to argue, or to be mistreated, so I am thankful this is a Friday Reflections where I can say, this has been a better week. Thank you, God.

On Friday’s, I like to give thanks to God for all that I have endured, experienced, or learned this week. When my dad was alive, and all of us lived at home, I recall him asking me, “What did you learn today?” And when he asked, I shared my lessons learned. How I miss that man. Holidays just are not the same without my dad here with us. After his death in 1999, Thanksgiving was the hardest holiday ever. I cooked the meal, set the table with linens and china, only to notice my dad’s chair was empty. The emptiness I felt was almost unbearable. This year, I feel his loss still — even though it is 15 years later. I’ve asked God, “How long does one grieve?” Funny. I’ve never heard an answer. I believe the grief process last for eternity; however, we who grieve, must learn to walk through the grief and — as my dad would tell me — Move On. That is truly a hard lesson learned.

Now that I am finally writing again, I must give thanks and be proud that the words are flowing — a bit. I still have people ask me — ‘are you EVER gonna finish your story?’

My answer — “Yes…writing takes time.” It isn’t a process where you can just sit and write. NOT ALWAYS!

And so, tonight – while it is still Friday, I am reflecting on life…gratitude…and my personal reflections for this week. My thoughts just strayed a bit while listening to the TV. Honey Boo Boo’s Mom was speaking on the network. Sorry I do not know her name…All I do know is she has two, if not three chins! Oh…my goodness…she is undoubtedly the most non-photographic woman I have ever seen. Just how she became a household name is beyond me. Not a good mother…and certainly not someone photogenic or pretty, or someone I wish to reflect on… Make up doesn’t help her at all! And most women really are glamorous with makeup. So, I suppose I shall keep the remainder of my opinion about that woman — to myself. Is that a first? Perhaps!

To those of you in Murrells Inlet at the Elks Lodge, I hope you all enjoy the show, and to the performers, I still shall say, “Break a Leg!”

Until next week…

Revising My Easter Post


Dearest Readers:

This will be another brief post since my eye is still beet red and just a bit swollen. I suppose it is time for me to make an appointment with my eye doctor, just to confirm that the redness is from the pollen. I will be so happy when this pollen ends. It is so thick this year, I can watch it blowing in the wind.

Yesterday, I wrote a brief post about Easter, describing what Easter means to me. The blessed memories of my grandmother, the celebrations we shared in church. However, I left out one important reason for the season of Easter, and that is the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

According to the website, http://christianity.about.com/od/holidaytips/qt/whatiseaster.htm
“Christians believe, according to Scripture, that Jesus came back to life, or was raised from the dead, three days after his death on the cross. As part of the Easter season, the death of Jesus Christ by crucifixion is commemorated on Good Friday, always the Friday just before Easter. Through his death, burial, and resurrection, Jesus paid the penalty for sin, thus purchasing for all who believe in him, eternal life in Christ Jesus.”

For those who read my post, I apologize for leaving this important information out. I suppose I was focusing on the memories of my grandmother and simply forgot to discuss the resurrection. Added to that, my silly eye problems.

I hope your Easter was a time to reflect and to remember why we celebrate Easter.

Happy Easter to The World!


Dearest Readers:

This will be an extremely brief post on my blog due to issues — all due to the pollen — with my right eye. If I go outside without sunglasses, my right eye is kissed with pollen — turning beet red. So, since this will be brief, please allow me to get to the point of this blog.

Today, all around the world, is Easter. A day to celebrate, appreciate, and recognize this holiday is significant since it is all related to the passing of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Today, we celebrate in remembrance of the significance of Jesus Christ.

To all of my family and friends, I wish you a joyous celebration. We will celebrate with an Easter dinner with a few of our friends. I hope all of you are remembering and enjoying this Easter Sunday. Today in Charleston, the weather is a bit ‘iffy’ with gray clouds, much wind, and I am quite certain the pollen is ‘blowing in the wind.’

I am a bit pleased that we have plans with friends since my eye is so red — AGAIN! I suppose I will have to make an eye doctor’s appointment — only to be told — ‘your right eye is allergic to the pollen!’ What do you want to bet that will be the diagnosis?!???

On this day, Easter Sunday, I like to reflect on some of the good memories I have about Easter and my childhood. Normally, our Easter Sunday was spent with my maternal grandparents. The four girls in our family received Easter baskets from the Easter bunny, until we started questioning the “Easter bunny.” Nevertheless, every Easter Sunday, we received new Easter dresses from our grandparents. How I LOVED dressing up at Easter time. Dressing up in my ‘Sunday Best’ — as good ole Southern women would whisper — wearing nylons, or tights, a beautiful, brightly colored Easter dress, and new heels. I say heels because they were the only Easter shoes I EVER desired. Those of you who know me and the high heels I wear must understand — don’t you? I LOVE nylons and high heels!

On those special Easter Sundays of my youth, I recall the church we went to would have an Easter picnic at the fellowship hall. All of us ‘little ladies’ would prance around — or would it be — priss around — to show our Easter dresses off to all of the boys. I remember spinning around, and walking as if I had a book on my head! Such a prissy little brat! The dinner contained every delicious dish you could ever imagine eating, including the Easter cakes, Southern desserts, and one little woman would bring a “Jesus birthday cake.”

Such delicious memories I have, and I confess, as an adult, I have never enjoyed Easter nearly as much since losing my grandmother. I have no idea how my sisters feel about Easter, but my memories of Grandma and Papa and our Easters at their house were the best. I remember sitting next to Grandma. She would open her Holy Bible to the scriptures, underlining these precious words with a red ink pen. No highlighters! I remember singing along with the choir, and occasionally glancing at some of the boys. When Grandma patted me on the leg, I knew — I must behave and pay attention to ‘the word of our Lord.’ How I wish I had Grandma’s Holy Bible in my collection of books. I have no idea what happened to it, but I do recall she wrote the complete and final request of how her funeral was to be in the back pages of that Bible. Her one song request, “Asleep in Jesus.” I found it at a music store and someone sang it at her funeral. How I hope and pray someone in our family still has Grandma’s Holy Bible. If I did, I would open it today to read and reminisce about those Easter Sundays with Grandma. I would look at and touch the words highlighted in red ink, knowing that many, many years ago, my Grandmother touched those same words! Maybe one day soon I’ll write a story about Grandma’s Holy Bible.

Not a bad idea!

Happy Easter, World. Let us all appreciate what this season represents.