Back when I was young…

Tonight at book club the old farts, well, older farts, got to recollecting about way back when.  Our book for the month was “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett (although a member of the club did call her Kathryn Stunkett).  And that member should take note that I did not burst out laughing even though I wanted to really badly.  Just smiled great big.  Everybody probably thought I was immensely enjoying the discussion… which I was.  Ms. Stunkett wrote about the plight of the black maids in Mississippi during the 1950’s and 1960’s.  Actually, it was more about the interactions between the women, black and white, during that time as well as the fight for and against segregation.

But, as in all books, there are a lot of other little tidbits that one can glean knowledge about or that brings back a memory.  In our case tonight, we were remembering when the zip codes first began to be used on letters, how we could just write the name and the town and the addressee would receive the mail, and the fact that people didn’t want to have to use the zip codes.  Now, of course, it’s second nature to slap it on there.

Then there were the telephone party lines.  That brought back some memories and stories!  Here’s a link to walk you down that memory road as well:  telephone party line

Some of us remembered when Medgar Evers was shot and killed for trying to make things better for African Americans in Mississippi, and we remembered Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as he did the same, and was killed for it as well.  And today we have a President, whether you  agree with his politics or not, that brings justice to those senseless deaths.

How the world changes!!!  I’m just trying to hang on by a string!

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Blog Baby

One of my favorite blogs (which is now defunct due to some apparent nasty comments or emails to the blog author that upset her to the point of forfeiting her blog writing) (such a shame because she was really good, too) had a blog one day that put her on the Freshly Pressed page.  I will never make that page.  Not just because I don’t write well enough or am not quite interesting enough but because when they sent me the little popup question “Would you recommend Word Press?” I inadvertently put never instead of yes, of course.  Which I would by the way.  It’s very easy to maneuver around on; they give great tutorials, and have a great help page.  But in my haste, only reading a smidgeon of the question, which I am want to do quite frequently, I checked the wrong box.

So I know that is why I will never be Freshly Pressed.  It has absolutely nothing to do with my boring blog or my lack of good taste or my rambling, unfocused content.

Back to my original thought before that stinking rabbit came along that I had to chase.  Another thing I do quite often:  chase stinking rabbits.  That is why I can’t get anything accomplished in a timely manner, finished completely.  I go to another room… and there is a stinking rabbit!!  My life is exhausting.  Those stinking rabbits run in circles, you know, so I must run in circles as well.

On to the blog of one of my favorite bloggers:  she wrote about the fact that her blog is her baby.  I could so relate!  Although I am better now, I still come in and check to see if there are any comments, how many hits I’ve had that day, if I can change my blog’s little clothes (heading photo), or just talk to the little darling via a post.  It’s kind of neat having a blog baby (her title).

Mine will probably never grow up because I try to keep it short and sweet, although occasionally it throws a tantrum by way of Brenda the Blogger.   It’s just a little dose of a little something to give you a break in the day.  No big thinking here; just interacting… that is, if you comment.

So enjoy your evening or your day and give my little baby blog a bottle (comment).  Or not.

Gypsy Parade

three budding gypsies

This past winter the girls and I were gypsies.  Kate loves pretending to be, well, just about anything.  And, of course, do I.  Ava will follow suit even though sometimes she refuses to wear our “designs” for play.  She’s usually rather stoic, looking at us like we are fools, with her solemn little eyes.  I can just hear those thoughts now. “Please don’t tell me you expect me to put that thing on my head!”  Although recently she has begun to enjoy pretending with us.

We traipse around town, the three of us; me pushing Ava in the stroller; Kate driving her pink Barbie car… her decorated pink Barbie car.  She usually has riders along for the ride as well.

passengers ready for a ride

I have on the worst clothes in my closet (usually short shorts that highlight my nasty thighs and a cami with stains) because we never decide to go for the ride/walk until we are outside in the middle of it, a block away from appropriate clothes before I realize I wouldn’t be caught dead in the clothes I am traipsing all over town in!  The gypsy parade:  Me in the what-kind-of-get-up-is-that, Kate in God-alone-only-knows-what-she’s-come-up-with, and Ava stained from lunch and dirty from playing; me pushing the stroller that Ava sits in with a drink in hand, doll or stuffed animal squeezed beside her with periodic yielding as I take my foot and push the back of the car that Kate has run off the sidewalk road because she is gawking at something along the route; me in flipflops with the other two gypsies barefoot.

Maybe we should call this the Redneck Gypsy Parade.

My Rainbow Day

Today was a rainbow day.  One of those days where the future looks good; the rain has gone and the promise has come, spreading joy across the sky.

Kate posing with her rainbow painting she painted on the screened-in porch

Kate wanted to paint because her Uncle Nate and I were painting the kitchen, so I mixed her up some red, green, blue, and yellow paint (made with water and a little food coloring) and gave her a paint brush.  She painted away for quite awhile, and then very excitedly ran to the kitchen door to tell me to come look what she had painted.  It was a rainbow.  A rainbow that brought a promise of happy things for my little granddaughter: a sound mind, a curiosity that will lead her to a fulfilling career, an excitement for creating, a joy that comes from God.

Her next job was photographing various objects around the house.  She’s very careful with my good camera (although I do keep saying things, like, “Be careful with my camera.”)  She had me as a photography assistant as she was doing the photo shot of her Barbie bike.  My job was to follow orders and move the handle bars just so-so in order for her to get a good shot.

the bell on her Barbie bike

the wheel of her Barbie bike

There were several close-up shots of the Barbie bike bell.  I am going to have to get a video camera in order to get her doing all this stuff.  It is just so funny.  She will take a picture, look at it on the camera, and say, “That was a good one.”

Nate and I could see the flash going off like crazy in the living room, just one after another.  I couldn’t imagine what she was photographing!  It was a big mess in there with everything from the kitchen in the living room.  Kate’s photo shoot was filled with things that caught her interest, things that she liked.  She would place them just the way she wanted them, and snap photos.  It turns out there was a whole series of my antique dishes in the chiffarobe my brother had altered into a glass-doored cabinet.

she took a picture of every shelf on each side! she loves those dishes!

Kate has a lot of her Greatgreataunt Gladys and Gigi in her. She loves fake flowers. I can envision her yard full of them now.

Kate loves jewels.  She can find them among the rocks at school.  And she finds them all over the place at my house.  Not real jewels, of course, but nevertheless, to her adventurous, imaginative little self those fake flowers, my oh-so-neat dishes and little tea spoons, her toys, my ink pens are all jewels to her.  And she is my jewel.

Kate's close-up of her jewel. She adores jewels and is always on the look-out for them.

We yelled at her to come and take our picture.

Nate getting photographed

Nate and me

There were other reasons this was a rainbow day.  Church was good; the dinner at church was delicious; getting my kitchen ready for the new flooring and appliances tomorrow was satisfying; and spending time with my son doing something constructive, with pleasant conversation, having a normal day was just rainbow.  I’ve been cheated out of those days; days that I will never get back and harbor resentment in my heart and soul that they are lost to me.  (That’s another story for another day.)

But on this rainbow day, I will rejoice in those everyday, humdrum things that people take for granted: spending a day with a child and/or grandchild, working, talking, laughing.

Locusts!

What is going on around here?  First we have a major flood, and now we have this army of locusts invading our land.  They are eating everything in sight!

my once beautiful rose bushes

I have been on the internet to find out how to kill them, but the only apparent safe way is to stomp them or hit them with a board, which is my plan of action, both things.

making their way to my rose bushes and other flowers

Insecticides aren’t an option because the birds are having a heyday with them as are the squirrels and even spiders.  The locusts must be delicious.  I had been noticing the squirrels digging in the ground and eating away where nothing to eat should be, couldn’t figure out what was going on with them.  Then the birds have been eating something as big as their heads.  Today I see what it is.

What kind of spider is this?

Today… I am so very mad at Adam and Eve for screwing up Paradise and opening up Pandora’s Box of sin with all the consequences that go with that sin… from now until the end of time.

The nasty, red-eyed, evil looking things are EVERYWHERE!

Encompassing my Essence

The apron that totally describes who I am!

My good friend, Dolores, came by one evening awhile back, quite awhile by now, and brought me this oh-so-cool apron to celebrate my blog.  I have been wanting to put it on here for ages, but for some reason didn’t. (who knows with me?)

So today I took some close-up shots of all the stickers that most aptly describe me to a T!

my favorite Scripture

I can’t tell you how many times God has lifted me up to soar above the storm that surrounded me.  I would show you my eagle, but my sis would frown at me showing, literally, my a** once again.

playing piano, singing, listening...

I love music.  It soothes my soul or peps me up to a good mood; it gives me joy to see others learning how to play or stepping out to sing at church; and, of course, I can’t dance without it.

I love summer!!! I love chatting!!!

These aren’t my best photo shots, but was trying to get close, in a hurried sort of way.  Never pays to hurry: the story of my life.  How does the time get away from me like that?  And why do I feel I always need to rush, rush, rush?  “I’m not ready!”

happy mood? sad mood?

We have a lot of issues in my family, so sometimes we have a lot of heartache.  Some days we just smile and act like everything is fine.  And some days, well, everything is fine.  What a great day!  Those are the days we cherish… and try to remember on the “other” days.

children, sisters, brother, cousins, nephews, nieces, the greats, friend family, church family

One of my very favorite things:  people.  I collect them, much to my sister’s chagrin. (look that up, girlie)  She gives me specific orders NOT to talk to anyone when we go shopping.  She has finally got me trained because I don’t remember her saying that in a while.  Now, she is the Chatty Cathy (do you remember her?) and meets all kinds of people she knows.  It’s the same with my sister-in-law, Annie.  I feel like I’m with a celebrity when I’m with her because everybody, and I mean everybody, knows her and gushes all over her and wants her attention and talks to her.  While I stand there invisible.  It’s tough.  But…

yellow circle tag! I'm almost there!

I am a celebrity in training!  “Well, isn’t that special?”  Yeah, baby, I have a blog!  Woohoo, watch out world.  Okay, okay.  So only a handful of people actually read it and less than a thimble full comment, I still have it!

I’m not quite sure what that little green thing means.  Surely, it does not mean those nasty, littlebig, ugly words that I neverever-almost neverever-wellmaybesometimes-okayonoccasion-everyday say!!

novice photographer that needs to take some lessons

Pictures are just so cool.  And since I want to be cool, I take pictures.  On occasion I even take a good one.

Thank you, my friend, for such a gift of the heart.  To know that you pay attention to someone, me in particular, enough to know the essence of who that person is brings joy to my heart.

Mission Statement

an apron gift from my good friend Dolores

The apronsandappetites Mission Statement:

1.  Write about what interests me or catches my attention or someone suggests or what I cook from my magazine recipes (I have to laugh at this one… but I really am going to do that on a regular basis soon… still laughing) or an old story or friends or…

2.  Bring a smile to someone’s face or provoke a deep thought or nudge a lighthearted one or renew memories or change a point of view or create empathy/sympathy or…

3.  Never think that because I write a blog that I am a real writer.  Perchance some real words worth reading on occasion may make their way into this little blog, but may I never perceive that as the true gift of being able to write.

4.  Enjoy myself and perhaps bring joy to others; bare my soul and perhaps bring the encouragement for others to do the same; leave a piece of me in cyberspace and bring those who comment along with me.

5.  Write on a semi-regular basis with the hope that people read on a semi-regular basis and maybe even comment on a lesser semi-regular basis (only because I know you won’t all the time, my goal).

Land Ahoy!

the rock ledge is starting to peek through

The water is receding and land is beginning to emerge.  I actually saw roads today that I hadn’t seen in a couple of weeks.  All our water is moving down to Memphis wreaking havoc on those poor people down there.  Our poor people up here are now in the throes of starting over:  either moving to a new home or tearing up floor coverings, cutting away walls, and pulling out insulation.

They are throwing away things they didn’t have time to salvage and cleaning and bleaching what they think they can.  The trash that was floating all over the place is now getting left behind on the roadways and in the yards.

a small amount of debris

Today I saw some tires, huge trees, a swimming pool, and general debris.  The trees and shrubs are all brown where they were sitting in water, and now the water has gone down.  I’m not sure if that is mud or dead leaves.

It’s going to be odd to see the Fish Dock, as we call it, the floating restaurant in the photo to the right, back down to it’s normal water level instead of eye level with the homes.  The road actually goes down a steep hill to the river, and then there is a plank that people walk down to get to the boat.  Right now it may be higher than the homes.

God speed to those who are rebuilding.

When It Starts Coming Together…

the tongue helps... really, it does

Giving piano lessons is one of the neatest things about getting the baby grand.  Of course, I wanted the grand for me, but I also didn’t want to give piano lessons on the little spinet I had.  (won’t give a brand name of the little spinet, but it’s just not a good piano)  And I did want to give lessons.  We need some new piano blood in our church.  Vickie and I aren’t getting any younger.

totally focused

Emily is eight, and I am priming her for the church pianist.  She just started a couple of months ago, serious lessons, and she’s doing great.  I love to watch her throw her hands out to the sides to calm herself down for the new pieces.  And I love to watch her when she’s really practiced hard and knows her lesson well.

now she's getting it

Today’s lesson, the new lesson, was the theme from the Mickey Mouse Club.  It looks hard at first until she plays through it a couple of times.  Then she sees that really can get it.

oh, yeah!!

And she really  likes it when we play the piece together.  We played a duet of Old McDonald today.  She was fantastic and very happy as she played it with me.

It’s just such fun when it all starts coming together.

Workin’ the Dirt

I think I did more work than Kate did

Kate and I were out planting and digging and got very dirty.  When we came in, we compared feet to see who got the dirtiest.  She says she did.  I think I did.  I even got a blister on my baby piggy!  I don’t know how that happened because I was wearing flipflops.  We used to call those thongs when I was little, but now if you say you wore thongs to the store, people look at you kind of funny.

I had to take the bottom to prove she was dirtier

Ah, feet.  Some of the most useful things around.