Friday, December 24, 2010


With Amanda and Kelvin and the grandchildren gone out of town and me not going to be able to see them until tomorrow evening, it was just me and Dan tonight at home. I decided to post a poem I wrote (and it was actually published ) back in 1987.  To my surprise, it won the GOLDEN POET AWARD that year…fancy that…the little kid from Horseshoe Bend being a ‘Poet’!


The Horseshoe Bend Kids @ 1955 at my granny’s house on Madison Highway across for the old Phelps's home place; That’s me in my rocker with my colored baby doll!     


The day had been a bad one and Christmas Eve was drawing near,

I wished my kids would quiet down … I wished I wasn't here.

I wished I were a child again, back home with mom and dad,

I wished that time would take me back, as I climbed into my bed.

I dreamed of looking through a window, and the past was there to see,

Past that window was my daddy, chopping down our Christmas tree.

In a moment’s time, the scene had changed; frost lay white on Georgia ground,

Fire was crackling in the old wood stove, as all the family gathered round.

In the corner was a Christmas tree, the one cut by loving hands

So tall it touched the ceiling as it stood on an old wood stand.

The children with their threadbare clothes,were so beautiful to see..

For they were my brothers and my sisters; and the smallest child was me!

Long gone smells of cedar mixed with oranges, came back against my will,

As our childish cries of joy and laughter and mama's singing held me still.

Look! Daddy's hugging mama and that's our Granny over there..

Oh, I longed to stay forever within this love we use to share.

From the mantle hung our stockings that were made from old used socks,

On the tree were strings of popcorn; from the bottom to the top.

But something missing from these scenes of old, kept pulling me away

I couldn't see my children, so in Christmas Past I couldn't stay,

There and then I knelt down by that window, praying "Lord, put time back in place"

"For now I've seen how fast time flies, and I have none to waste."

I awoke to cries of joys and laughter, and these not from my past,

These sounds came from my children...I WAS HOME AT LAST.


I wrote this sometime during the latter part of December of 1987. This was two years after my dear daddy had passed away. Amanda was five and Dan was 15…  I had went to sleep that night, after having had a bad day with the kids, and actually had the dream I speak of in the poem!

I use to love to write poetry…but haven’t in a long time.

Hope all my friends have a great Christmas tomorrow…remember to tell Jesus Happy Birthday!


Wednesday, December 1, 2010



What does it take to move the human spirit to show empathy? Empathy is the identification with and understanding of another's situation, feelings, and motives…so I guess one would have to had experienced at least some of what the other person is going through.

Being raised like we were,  gave me the chance to experience things that some folks haven’t had the chance to…Like being hungry because there is no more food left in the house….or the only food available for a day or two was black berries and milk…Like being cold….shivering throughout the night  because there is no heat in the house….or standing on the corner waiting on the school bus and telling your friend you are not cold because you have no coat to go back and get….and you are ashamed to admit it. Like being in school and having your shoe fall off your foot because the sole wore out…

As a child and a young adult, I use to be ashamed of the fact that we had very little coming up…I am no longer ashamed of how I was raised..I am actually thankful to GOD for that experience. Please don’t get me wrong…my parents were good people…my daddy worked two and three jobs all his life until he retired… and my mama was a stay at home mama…well most all mama’s were stay at home mamas back then in the 40’s and 50’s…and she workedoh how hard she worked to keep us going back then on Horseshoe Bend, even with very bad legs and feet. Back then, if there was a welfare system, we didn’t know it…so we made do with what we had.

Having felt cold and hunger as a small child…having had very few clothes that were already thread bare by the time I received them…makes me realize that although television today portrays our country as the land of  rich people or middle class people…there  are folks here that are dealt a bad hand in life…for whatever reason, they are down on their luck and may not  have the mental capacity to improve their situation.

I saw such a person …I watched her closely for over three weeks…I watched her fumble and fiddle with her belongings…I watched her talking to the invisible …to pure air…I watched as she blew on her fingers to try her best to warm them…and my heart broke…and I thought..BUT FOR THE GRACE OF GOD GO I…OR MY CHILDREN…OR MY GRANDCHILDREN…OR MY MAMA…

We never know what the future may hold for any of us. The way this country is going now days, this could be any one of us.

In a world that has grown cold hearted…in a world where some may  think;  ‘well, they have chosen their life’….I thank God there are still a few people left with compassion and empathyI thank GOD there are those among us with the love of CHRIST JESUS burning within them…

I thank God for the ANGELS that are placed among us to help those of us less fortunate.


Sunday, November 14, 2010



                   Boot and Shelby

I found a picture of my nephew and his sister online tonight and I decided I wanted to save that picture…so after I right clicked on it, I had to “name the file”

Before thinking about it, I automatically typed…

Boot and Sissy.

Because for nearly 19 years, it was always BOOT AND SISSY

Where you saw one, you usually saw the other. Boot had a love for his little sister like no other brother I have ever known. I have seen him, even as a very young child, intentionally cause a fuss if he thought Sissy was about to get in trouble…just to pull the attention away from her.

Only this time, it wasn’t Sissy in the was his youngest sister Shelby.  Little Shelby is one of the sweetest young ladies I have ever met…a natural ray of sunshine… so very beautiful and chock full of that Georgia southern charm.

So much like Sissy.

As I sat here looking at what I had typed, something snapped within me. I wanted to scream, to rip things up and throw them against the walls, to lie down on the floor and have a freaking all out tantrum…as I sat there sobbing like I haven’t since the day my Danny died.

I think all the tears I had stored within me for years came to the surface.

I guess I had what they call a delayed reaction.

You see…

There was a terrible car accident…

We buried Sissy over a month ago.

She was only 18 years old for gosh sake…

Sissy never got the chance to truly live her life.

Our entire family has an empty place that can never be filled and we miss her so very much.

You never know….

You just never know….

Here one minute...

Gone the next.

Rest In Peace Laura Ashley Epps…


          OUR SISSY

You will never be forgotten.


Thursday, November 4, 2010


Well, well, well…..we are finally here…

It is NOVEMBER and the weather is finally beginning to feel like fall…which is a good thing….we don’t need hot weather at this late date.

But for now…lets go back to OCTOBER…..

For Halloween, Kevin carved both Wyatt and Will’s  jack-o-lanterns and he did such a good job. He did it free-hand too! Here they are lit up!


Little will’s had a pumpkin spooky face and his name on it.


Of course, Wyatt wanted a tractor on his! His name is to the left but we couldn’t get it and the tractor in the picture.

Although  the true Halloween was Sunday, Wyatt and Will went up town Saturday and trick-or-treated at the stores which were giving out candy. Wyatt was dressed up as  a Ga. football player and William as the mascot.  Kelvin and Dan brought them by Holcomb’s before they went …


Then later on that night, they came to my house and got their little bags of candy. Wyatt thought he was staying with ‘Maw-maw’  and cried when they put him back in the car! Amanda said she bribed him with chocolate to stop the tears! lol

I know this isn’t much of a post…and the truth is…I am really not in the mood to write tonight…haven’t been in  a long time…just wanted to put down the grandbabies’ Halloween doings, so I would have it here when I … or they…want to look back.

Maybe later on, my urge to write will came back to me….

Until then….


Sunday, October 17, 2010



Wyatt loves the horsey his ‘Aunt Jady got him.

I didn’t go to church this morning. When I walked the pups before 7 am, it was cold as the dickens! I haven’t turned my old space heater on yet, so the house was chilly inside too…so I crawled back in bed under my covers!  Sure did feel good too and before I knew it, I was out like a light and the next thing I knew, it was nearly11:00! 


Wee Will…He is the embodiment of love!

Kelly came by today to see Dan. They had a good time talking out on the front porch and when they came in I had some lunch on the table…lunch being sausage, eggs, grits and biscuits…yeahbreakfast! It was pretty good and I finally convinced Kelly to eat with us! Kelly is one of the kids that came into our lives via our children….He is a good kid…yeah I know he is grown now, with children of his own,  but to me they are always our kids, no matter how old they get!


I cooked pinto beans, potato salad,hamburger helper and homemade biscuits for supper. (AND SWEET TEA) I made the cheesy enchilada hamburger helper for the first time and it was good…but I think I like the stroganoff the best . I don’t cook hamburger helper much, I usually cook regular meat dishes, but I had bought some boxes of it while it was on sale. I also had coupons for it, so I was able to save a lot…and  trust me, every bit helps.

Fall Wreath

So, I am sitting here watching SISTER WIVES. The TV just happened to be on TLC and this new show comes on. I don’t know about anyone else, but this kind of family life seems sort of crazy to me…To each his own..but when I see shows like this, I always wonder why there are no brother husbands? I mean…why is it that it is always the man that has extra wives and not the other way around?


     One morning earlier this month…

Not saying that I would agree with that lifestyle either, but it sounds to me like the men sort of get to have their cake and eat it too and the women don’t…they just have to sit around and watch their husband go out and “court” another woman and then bring her into the family. This just doesn’t seem right to me…in more ways than one. If these women want sisters…someone to share their lives and their children with…why not have a family sort of like the  TV sitcom GOLDEN GIRLS portrayed and kick the husband to the side?  Hey, since they have umpteen kids all combined, they could all pool their child support and live pretty good!!!


Seriously, I am so glad that Autumn has finally got here, me and hot weather do not get along. The leaves are falling, falling,falling and the mornings are very chilly. Every now and then, I hear the pecans from the old pecan tree out back hitting my tin roof and it ‘s a nice sound. I love the Fall… love it about as much as I love the Spring of the year.


Monday, October 11, 2010



For once; three sisters with their mama.

Is there anything more comforting than food that your mama use to cook for you? I find it so odd that the food that we had almost daily, is the exact food that I crave when the world turns upside down and I am wondering how much longer I can hold on.

Tonight I cooked blackeyed peas and cornbread for mine and Dan’s supper…I had started ‘looking’ some dry pinto beans when Dan, sitting across the table from me, said, “Mama, are those blackeyed peas???” I knew instantly that he was wanting  peas instead, so I put some water over the pinto beans to cook later on tomorrow, and began ‘looking’ the blackeyed peas.

(For those who don’t know; looking is the act of  looking through the dry beans/peas for any tiny rocks, dirt, etc. to get rid of before washing and cooking…something I was taught to do once married and cooking for my own little family)

My mama made the best blackeyed peas!  Usually when she had them for supper, she also cooked collard greens and cornbread to go along with them. Just ask Dan and he will tell you that his GRANDMA LINDSEY cooked the BEST blackeyed peas and collards!  He tells me that I come close, but hers is and always will be the BEST!  (I think ALL her grandchildren would say the same thing if asked!  That’s okay by me, because it is the truth!)

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Kay, Mama’s oldest grandchild, came home for the first time in years. Kay is not only my niece, but also my hero…a very brave and strong Christian lady.

The loss of Laura Ashley has cut our hearts and added a new scar. I can’t and won’t talk about it now, it is too sad…. but her loss has me pondering about a lot of things. If any good came out of her death,it is that it brought family back together.

I’ve been looking way back and thinking about how my life has played out so far and have been regretting the many mistakes I have made. I’ve been wondering why things happen the way they do and what I would do differently if only God would give me a chance to go back in time…

 I know that I would…

Truly honor my parents…Oh,  I learned the ten commandments back in my early childhood, but it wasn’t until I got much older, with  children of my own, that I fully understood what the word HONOR meant. I know now that it goes right along with r-e-s-p-e-c-t… and if I had the chance today, I would do al lot more honoring and respecting  and I would wrap my arms around my parents and tell them how much I appreciate all the sacrifices they made for me. Sacrifices that I didn’t even notice at the time.


Isn’t she beautiful?? My cousin; who will always be “Baby Helen” to us…thanks to my mama.

I would sit down with my Granny and both my parents and ask all about their childhoods and their lives and I would write it all down,  so that when I became my age now and my children wanted to know,  I wouldn’t have to worry about having forgot it.

I would  put my all into being a good student. Oh, I did pretty good in school…but I was so lazy when it came to putting my all into it. So, if given the chance, I would sit in every class, everyday and be a virtual sponge soaking up all the knowledge that was thrown my way….and if I didn’t understand some bit of  information, I would be brave enough to hold my hand up and ask .

I would care less of what others thought of me and strive to please GOD more. I would be brave enough to laugh in the face of those silly girls in grade school who  wouldn’t play with me or teased me about being poor….

For poor I was not…

I was rich in what mattered most.

 I had love.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010


When Danny and I first got married, he worked at the Mary Leila Cotton Mill as a doffer. He took me on a tour of his work section one day when we were dating…I was awed at how fast he had to be to keep up with those huge machines!

I remember there was cotton blowing everywhere in that room. The whole  room’s air was infiltrated with tiny loose cotton strands. No wonder Danny use to come home after work with the white fuzz all in his hair, his nose, his throat, and all over his entire body. All the workers did. His mama and his  grandmother both worked with Danny at the Mill, and would come help him catch up with his section at lunch, so they could all eat together.

When we married, we rented a little 3 room shotgun house from the Mill. It was right in front of the Mill’s front office and though empty now, it still stands. We didn’t own a car, so we walked to town to get our groceries…Back then there was very little money, so there were very few groceries to carry home! We mainly lived off beans and cornbread and only occasionally would we have meat for supper.  But we were so happy!

Back when I lived on Horseshoe Bend…we had chicken maybe once a week on Sunday morning.  Mama had to go outside and catch that chicken and kill it, scald it, pluck it, clean it and then and only then, was she able to fry it. Sometimes during the week, if daddy had time from working his two jobs to go  fishing, we would have fried catfish or bream and if it was hog killing time, we had pork…but mostly beans and potatoes or just white gravy and biscuits…Oh what I would give for mama’s good white gravy and great big fluffy cat head biscuits now!

You know, in the fifty plus years God has granted me here on this earth, I have come to understand that it is the simplest things which give us true happiness and most times, we don’t realize it until much later in life.

It is the simple things from my past that I miss the very most …like snuggling up with Danny on cold winter nights,he and I both fussing because our feet are so cold… holding each other’s hands while walking , seeing my babies take their first steps, going to get a Christmas tree with Danny and our kids, taking our babies to see their grandparents for the first time, me and Danny picking up pecans with Kathy and Donnie, and laying in bed talking with Danny.

These times in my life didn’t cost a dime, but I couldn’t and wouldn’t be able to put a price on them.

Remember the old hymn Precious Memories? 

Memories like these are priceless.


Friday, September 10, 2010


September 11, 2001


It was a beautiful morning,with bright clear blue skies as  Margaret Seeliger and her husband Bruce left their Manhattan apartment and stood in line to vote in New York's primary election. It was a sunny day and all the airports were reporting 100% visibility.

After voting, they would have walked on toward work together as usual, but Bruce had a doctor's appointment. So this morning, they kissed goodbye at the corner of 76th Street and Third Avenue. Bruce stood watching as Margaret boarded the train that would take her to her job and unknowingly, to her fate. You see, only thirty-four years old, Margaret Seeliger was employed as Head of the Student Health Division of Anon Insurance.

Which happened to be  located on the 100th floor at 2 World Trade Center in New York. 

Margaret had boundless energy, and lived her life to the fullest. She felt and often stated that "you never know how long you have here on this earth" so she  was always busy. Many of her weekends were spent in Buffalo visiting with her mom, who had fallen victim to Alzheimer's. Margaret was a very important part of her mom's care, attending to even the smallest details for her.

Since her mother was no longer able to do so, Margaret had taken over the role of being "Grandma" to her 11 nieces and nephews. She and her husband Bruce were constantly traveling to soccer games, or school plays in Rochester, California, Philadelphia and Atlanta. Looking so much like her own mom, the children had even began calling her "Grandma".

On some weekends, she and Bruce would catch a flight to Atlanta to visit with her sister Beth and her three children. It was on one of those last visits that Margaret asked Beth to hold on to the crib and baby clothes that she had in her basement...secretly confiding that she wanted to start trying to get pregnant that November.

November never came for Margaret.

On that bright and beautiful morning of September 11, 2001, Bin Laden ordered an attack on AMERICA, killing thousands of innocent people as planes crashed into the the Pentagon, an open field and… The World Trade Center Towers.

                 Where Margaret worked.

I can not imagine the fear and the panic that had to be running rampant through the buildings as people tried to flee to safety, but Margaret Seeliger bravely gave up her space on the last over crowded elevator that would leave the 100th floor of 2 World Trade Center…

So that two of her colleagues could make it out.



             YOU FAILED.



God bless you Margaret Seeliger and May Our Almighty God rest your soul….May His Holy Spirit continue to bring comfort to your family and friends.





Tuesday, September 7, 2010



Sign of the times…Fall is coming!

This past Saturday at the BBQ was our first Georgia Bulldog Game, the start of Dove hunting season, Labor Day weekend and the first week of the month, all rolled into one long day! So needless to say, we were busy! After opening at 9:00am, we sold out of meat and stew by 11:30 am and had to get more brought in.

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People were lined up in the dining area as soon as we got there for the fried pork skins and it was all we could do to weigh them and get them bagged and sell them. We sold out of ALL the pork skins within 15 minutes of opening. We had a very brisk day, selling out of meat and stew twice more before we finally called it quits at 7:30pm. 


We had some Georgia Bulldog fans ( ADULTS ) come in and sit at the long back table near closing time. On each side of that table hung up on the wall are Georgia Bulldog rugs.  In the middle of the rugs is an approximately 3ft x 4ft Georgia Tech Banner hung a little higher up on the wall in honor of my boss’ nephew ( he is also the owner’s grandson) who graduated from there. When the Bulldog Fans left, I went back to clean off their table and found the Georgia Tech Banner wadded up under the table with the chairs sitting on top of it.  Now wouldn’t you think that ADULTS would have more respect for other’s property than that?  We may have been poor little critters out there on Horseshoe Bend, but my mama taught us ALL how to have respect .


Just a moment before Will pulled his brother’s ear!

After I got off work, I headed home and took the pups out for a quick walk and then headed back over to Amanda’s house to  babysit my grandsons. It was Kelvin’s sister Liz’s birthday and they wanted to take her out to celebrate. They had a whole lot of folks, Dan included,  going along with them to Cowboy’s…a country music dance hall over in Milledgeville. My grandboys were so sweet…never had an ounce of trouble out of either one of them. Amanda and Kelvin are blessed with two good natured little tykes. Little Wyatt was so happy to see me when I come in  that he started hopping up and down and doing the happy dance!!! I asked him; “Wyatt, what are you doing?” and he said, “I happy Maw-maw!” and then he ran and put his little arms around my legs and just hugged me so tight! God have mercy, that baby can melt this old woman’s heart.


                Watching TV together!

It was around 5:00 am when Amanda, Kelvin, Liz and Dan  finally made it home and everyone seemed to have had a wonderful time! I had let the boys stay up as late as they wanted because I knew their parents would probably want to sleep late the next day…but I stayed awake the whole time. So I was more than ready to head back to my house and crawl into my bed when they all came home! I went to bed as soon as I got home and went back to bed off and on all day Sunday….and no I didn’t make it to church.


        Will took Wyatt’s pickle!


            Wyatt took his pickle back!


        So Will got his very own pickle!

Yesterday morning,  Amanda, Kelvin, the boys, Dan and I all got together and went to the Crawfordville Labor Day Fair. Kelvin’s mama and Liz came over there later on too. For it to have been so cool when I got up around 6:30, it sure did get hot during the fair! I got sunburned on my neck and face. We kept the kids in the shade and kept them well hydrated. I had heard the parade would start at 10 am but found out once there that it wouldn’t start until 2:00!  Right after the parade, we left and came home. We had a real nice time, but I missed getting me some scuttlins and muskidines….and gosh, I sure did want some.


          Keeping the fluids coming!


Watching the parade with mommy


Playground near the fair…One tired little Will

I woke Dan up this morning around 7:00am and after getting dressed, we headed to Athens to the dentist. He had to have oral surgery to remove three teeth. He was suppose to have four pulled but once there, he asked the dentist not to pull his front one yet! So the dentist said he would wait a while on that one.  I tell you what, we couldn’t have asked for a nicer dentist! Matter of fact all of the people there were very kind and tried their very best to make Dan as comfortable as could be. Of course Dan was so nervous that the dental chair was shaking violently while he sat there waiting to get it over with!


          Today at Dentist.

Right about the time I took this picture, I thought he was was going to get up and go!  It didn’t help matters that someone across the hall…a grown man…was screaming his fool head off every time the dentist stepped near him! I wanted to step over there and help him out…by knocking his butt on out…the hard way!

Man, he had Dan scared to death!

You have to understand, Dan has been terrified of doctors and dentists since he was a baby and it has always been the hardest thing to get him to go. It was so  awful when he was younger because  sometimes, we had to literally drag him into  the doctor’s office or hospital kicking and screaming. It hasn’t gotten much better either, believe me! For one thing, he is a lot bigger and hard for me to mange.

All and all, he did pretty good today and I thank God for the kindness of the dental team up there at Athens' Family Dental Clinic.

And I thank you my friends for all your kind words and prayers;  for I am sure they helped make the day a little easier…

But, I am so glad that this day is over with!


Monday, August 30, 2010



       Petting zoo at Myrtle Beach.

Three little words….

Isn’t it amazing how three little words have the power to turn your world upside down, make your heart do flip-flops and even stop the world from turning?


   At Myrtle Beach 8/2010

Wyatt came home with me a few nights ago. He had came to the BBQ with his Daddy near closing time, and wanted to ride in ‘Maw-maw’s car’ when we got ready to leave.  Though I was tired from working 11 hours, when he reached for me to hold him and those little legs wrapped tightly around my waist and he put those little arms around my neck…well…it would have taken an act of God for me to say no. After I asked permission for him to go from his parents, he quickly turned and said, “bye bye Mommy, bye-bye Daddy, and then we were on our way…to Maw Maw’s house.


Will tried to eat the beach!!!

When we got there, I fixed us some supper and after he had finished eating he wanted to go “sit on the bed”… “c'mon Maw Maw…go sit on bed” he says…It is his ritual every time he comes over. He has toys in a little woven basket that he has played with on my bed ever since he was old enough to sit up and before.


        He loved the sand!

So that night, he and I and his Uncle Dan were sitting on the bed, while he took his toys out one by one and played with each of them, as he does every time. In that old woven basket, his treasures await him.  A duck rattle/teether, a Glow worm doll, a baby doll with a milk bottle that cries if you don’t feed it, an assortment of plastic blocks, and two harmonicas…which his Maw Maw thinks he plays like Neal McCoy! Well maybe not yet…but in time…  These are his toys…that he plays on Maw Maw's bed with…this is his thing he does every time that he is at my house.


He has to have trucks and tractors!!!

Later on, he asked to play with “maw maw's blocks”, which is a wooden perpetual calendar that sits on my desk. It has little oblong wooden months that slide into the bottom and square wooden blocks that have the dates on them, that sit on top of a little shelf. I have always let him play with it and he  plays with it like a puzzle, putting the various pieces on it, making different dates.


I love this one..see their reflection in the glass?

When he had finished placing the blocks on it that night,  I looked and nearly fell off the bed …He had put in: JULY 14

Danny’s birthday!

I know… it was just a coincidence, but still…


         Will in his car!!!

He had his back to me, still playing with that calendar, when all of a sudden, he got real still and quietly turned around and looked me square in the face and said… “I love you Maw Maw”,  just as serious as he could be. He had never before said those words even around me , much less to me.  My jaw dropped open and with a lump about the size of Texas in my throat , I managed to get out;  “I love you too Wyatt”.

I was so stunned that I then turned and asked Dan, “Did you hear him?”  trying to make sure I wasn’t imagining it..and Dan said;  “yes Mama, he said I love you Maw Maw” and hearing his Uncle Dan,  Wyatt grinned like a little monkey and grabbed me around my neck and said it twice again!

“I love you Maw Maw…I love you!!!”    Wyatt at Myrtle


Now this may seem like such a trivial thing to some.

But let me tell you this…

I wouldn’t take a million dollars for those …

Three little words.


Monday, August 23, 2010


To say that today has been  “one of those days”  is an understatement. It started out like a good day. I got up early and began my day like always…walking the pups, feeding Annie ( my outside dog), walking Annie, giving her clean water, and then watering my almost dead as door nails tomato plants. Afterwards, I went inside and made my bed, swept my floors, and made out checks for my bills.
I have been wanting to paint my living room, so after I got all that over and done with, I got on line to Home Depot and checked on paint colors. I want a neutral color this time, so that it will go with any furniture or curtains, etc. Well, you wouldn’t believe  just how many neutral colors there are!  I finished up on line, and called my sister to see if she needed to go to town when I went. She did, so I told her to be ready in 30 minutes and I went and got my shower.
Oh, it felt so good taking that shower.  I felt so much better after being out in the heat and humidity this morning. I quickly threw my clothes and makeup on and actually had a little spring in my step when I walked out onto the front porch and closed the front door. I knew it as soon as I heard the door click shut and I could have just fell down and had a dang temper tantrum right then and there, had I not been on my front porch where everyone could see me.
But as it turned out, I didn’t have to worry about anyone seeing me…oh noooooooooooo…..because there was NOBODY around. For once in it’s life, my whole street was empty and as dead as a ghost town. Remember those old westerns  that use to be on TV  years ago with the tumbling weeds always blowing across the dirt roads ? Yeah…it was like that.
Luckily, I had my cell phone, so I called a couple of folks hoping that someone would be there to help me…..but oh nooooooooooooo….everybody was gone. Even my kids were gone. So here I am stuck outside in 90 plus degree heat, with no house key, no car key, nothing …. but me.
So, I walk around back and drag the water hose holder, which looks like a plastic square box,to a window. I try to get my leg up to the top of it to get on it…nope…can’t. So I lay my cloth purse down on it to cushion my old knees and get up on it . I slowly try to stand up on it and  finally got upright and started trying to take the storm window off. It wouldn’t budge. I get down and head toward the old wood shed… which is locked with one of the  keys that is inside my house.
I am able to find a pair of old rusted catfish skinners that Danny use to use, in a catch all box under the shed, so I grab those and head back to the hose box under the window. I ease myself back on on it and using the catfish skinner handles, I pry up the hateful storm window and toss it on the ground . Then I try to raise the old window (that has been in this house ever since it was built by the cotton mill eons ago)…..and of course…it doesn’t budge.  By this time, I am sweating bullets and so pissed off at myself, that, as my granny use to say,  I could whoop my own butt.     
I say a few choice and ungodly words and then go at that old window like a demon child with those skinners and it finally comes unstuck and raises. Oh…I felt so victorious…..Until… I tried to raise myself high enough to get a leg (or even my head) inside that window. There was no way on God’s green earth that I could get my leg that high and still be normal. And no way I could jump up and fly in that window like a bird either….so I step down off my  box and did what I had not wanted to do….
I called Greensboro PD.
The 911 dispatcher was nice enough considering me being the fool locked outside on Mill Street calling but she informed me that they were on a call and would be there shortly. After a good while, I see the white police car coming. The policeman walks around back with me, but he was as short as I and could not reach the window either. So he had to call back up. Well, the next one was as about as short but must have been more agile, since he was able to (after pulling off  his police tool belt) pull his weight up enough to get through the dang window.
And wouldn’t you know it…As soon as his leg went in, Hallie, my Chihuahua and the other three ( aka mini pit bulls ) go into  attack mode. It was only when the other policeman informed him that he had to go all the way through the house to the front door and unlock it, that he jokingly yelled for his tazer!
So here I am…with a policeman running through my house with four Chihuahuas nipping at his legs…Man…If embarrassment could kill you, I would be as dead as my tomato plants.
Needless to say I am so grateful to those two angels that we call cops.
This was just the beginning of my day today…there is more
I am too tired to go into that just yet.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


I have ants in my car! Yes … ants!  My car sits under a pecan tree in my front yard, so I guess that’s where the ants are coming  from. There’s nothing like driving down the highway and feeling an ant biting the blue blazes out of your foot that’s on the accelerator!   And what’s up with that anyway?  How in the heck can an ant bite that hard???  Have you ever seen an ant’s mouth??? Me neither! Heck, their heads aren’t big enough for a mouth to be on it…much less have teeth!!!  I am seriously thinking about throwing an ant bomb in the car tonight…what yall think?


Amanda, Wyatt, Kelvin and William in Helen, Ga.

I got to bring Wyatt home with me Thursday evening after I got off work. I was so tired form working all day, but yall know grandma’s are hardly ever too tired for their grandbabies. Since Wyatt was here, he helped me walk the dogs. ( He has been helping me walk the dogs since he himself first learned how to walk. )The daddy dog, Bubba, is getting a little older now, so it takes him a while to get his mind set on going wee-wee…. so, I had walked the dogs up the street and back several times…in 97 degree heat…with Wyatt walking right along by my side… when all of a sudden Wyatt  sort of does a side kick towards Bubba and says very loudly and in as stern a voice as a two year old can  muster up ,GO  PEE  BUBBA!”

Well let me tell you...I nearly fell out !!!  I didn’t know the kid could even say that, much less realize that Bubba was the reason we were going up and down the street so many times!  Not wanting to encourage his kicking at animals, I nearly choked just trying not to laugh as I told him we mustn't be mean to animals!

Amanda has a heavy metal baby gate that Kelvin’s mom gave them . It is a nice one that is real sturdy. Amanda put it in between their living room and kitchen doorway so the kids can’t get into the kitchen while she cooks.. Well, our little William has learned to crawl to the baby gate and pull himself up. Then he stands there at the baby gate holding on with one hand and jumping up and down while just a jabbering! (Amanda says he reminds her of  a little monkey when he does that! lol )

You know…there’s not much of anything that can bring a smile to your face like a baby can…and just let that baby be your grandbaby and oh my…

Suddenly your world seems a whole lot brighter.


Friday, August 13, 2010


Nothing special about my work day this morning…No funny feelings like I am sometimes known to get if something is going to happen. Just a normal day, as I headed toward the table in the corner with pen and pad in hand. It was after I had gotten their order that the lady informed me that a friend’s husband had suffered a brain aneurysm this morning. I was so shocked that my breath literally caught in my throat and it was all I could do to keep from crying.

This friend had lost her daddy a little over 6 weeks ago and had just underwent some painful oral surgery the day before. She had been through quite a rough time and had shown me just how strong she truly is.

And now this.

I am sure when she went to bed last night that she had no idea…no inkling… that her world was about to be turned upside down.

Just like that night over four years ago…when I didn’t know that my world, as I knew it, was about to end .

Sometimes I have wondered if I would have done anything or said anything different that Saturday night had I known. Oh, I am sure there would have been some things done differently on both our parts, but we pretty much had already ‘gotten ourselves in gear’ so to speak, because God had already given me and Danny the warnings. You see, there were several smaller heart attacks before the massive heart attack that finally took his life.

The weeks we spent together at Emory during his open heart surgery to replace his aortic valve was time that we spent talking about all our years together and also about what time that we hoped we had left. The night before his surgery, we stayed up all night because Danny wanted to make sure that I knew all his wishes, just in case. My heart breaking, I didn’t want to listen…but he was determined…and he was so happy when he awoke to find that he had made it through the surgery.

That was in August of 2005.

We didn’t know it then, but we only had five more months together on this earth. That Sunday morning on Jan 29, 2006 was like any other Sunday morning at our house…Matter of fact, Danny told me he felt better than he had in years.

Within two hours, he would be gone


Today, while working at the Bar-B-Que I was reminded once again how fragile life is.

How the totally unexpected can come flying from out of nowhere to smack you right in the face, when you least expect it.

So, before you go to bed tonight, if you are lucky enough to still have that special someone there with you…

Give them a great big hug and make sure that they know how much you love them…

Because you never know.



Nothing special about my work day this morning…No funny feelings like I am sometimes known to get if something is going to happen. Just a normal day, as I headed toward the table in the corner with pen and pad in hand. It was after I had gotten their order that the lady informed me that a friend’s husband had suffered a brain aneurysm this morning. I was so shocked that my breath literally caught in my throat and it was all I could do to keep from crying.

This friend had lost her daddy a little over 6 weeks ago and had just underwent some painful oral surgery the day before. She had been through quite a rough time and had shown me just how strong she truly is.

And now this.

I am sure when she went to bed last night that she had no ideano inkling… that her world was about to be turned upside down.

Just like that night over four years ago…when I didn’t know that my world, as I knew it, was about to end

Sometimes  I have wondered if I would have done anything or said anything different that Saturday night had I known. Oh, I am sure there would have been some things done differently on both our parts, but we pretty much had already ‘gotten ourselves in gear’ so to speak,  because God had already given me and Danny the warnings. You see, there were several smaller heart attacks before the massive heart attack that finally took his life.

The weeks we spent together at Emory during his open heart surgery to replace his aortic valve was time that we spent talking about all our years together and also about what time that we hoped we had left.

The night before his surgery, we stayed up all night because Danny wanted to make sure that I knew all his wishes, just in case. My heart breaking, I didn’t want to listen…but he was determined…and he was so happy when he awoke to find that he had made it through the surgery.

That was in August of 2005.

We didn’t know it then, but we only had five more months together on this earth. That Sunday morning on Jan 29, 2006 was like any other Sunday morning at  our house…Matter of fact Danny told me he felt better than he had in years.

Within  two hours, he would be gone….


Today,  while working at the Bar-B-Que I was reminded once again how fragile life is.

How the totally unexpected can come flying from out of nowhere to smack you right in the face,  when you least expect it.

So, before you go to bed tonight, if you are lucky enough to still have that special someone there with you…

Give them a great big hug and make sure that they know how much you love them….

Because you never know.


Thursday, August 5, 2010


My daddy was a school bus driver. I can remember him getting up in the wintertime before the sun came up, to get that old number 13 school bus started. That way it would heat up enough to get the ice off the windshield…I can also remember him coming back into the house and his eyebrows would actually have frost on them. Yeah…it use to be that cold in the wintertime in Georgia back in the 50’s !


We were so poor back then. Don’t get me wrong, I am poor now, but nothing like back then. I can remember going to school one day and my shoe sole coming right off my old worn out hand-me-down shoe….I also remember my daddy patching it with rubber from car tires.

There were no free lunches back then..If you didn’t have the money, you didn’t eat… unless you brought something from home. I can remember so well the teacher calling our names, one by one, to come to her desk with our lunch money, which was 30 cents a day. Oh, how embarrassed I would be to have to say, “ I don’t have it.” Now, 30 cents a day doesn’t sound like much…but it was back then…especially if you had to multiply it by 6 or 8.


Many a day, when I first started in primary, I was sent to school with a cold peanut butter biscuit wrapped in paper. Let me tell you, that cold biscuit tasted pretty dang good by lunch time to that little girl from Horseshoe Bend!

For a long time in first grade, there was a boy who would make me give him my biscuit… and even threatened me if I told…so I would end up with nothing to eat at all on those days. This went on for a good while until I, in my 6 year old mind feeling that I had no other choice, told my mama a fib. I told her that I needed two biscuits for lunch because one wasn’t enough. So, at six years old, I learned to hide one biscuit and give the other to that old biscuit thief .

William, doing what he does best!

You know, for a long time I held a deep hatred for this guy. The way I saw it; he stole my dang biscuit…which left me awfully hungry…and worse yet, it forced me to lie to my mama. When you are poor, you already don’t have much of anything… so there is nothing worse than someone stealing what little you do have from you.

So,for a LONG time, I hated him…

Until it finally dawned on me that he was probably just as poor and just as hungry as I was! Like a little stray hungry kitten that will claw and hiss and snatch…Stealing my biscuit was the only way he knew how to fill his little hungry stomach back then. So, I finally had to quit hating him.

As you can see, he doesn’t need a buzz cut!

Now here we are in 2010. I have no children in school at this point in time, but I have heard parents around here talking about the school lists and wondered what all the fuss was about. Being the inquisitive person that I am, I looked it up to see what exactly was on these lists. Maybe I am old fashioned, but in my opinion these lists are ….

Ridiculous !!!

Here is a sampling of the lists and keep in mind it is for primary school grades and kindergarten.

Ziploc bags; gallon, sandwich, and quart sizes
3 boxes of tissue ( it ranges from 1-3 )
2 bottles of glue
a whole pack of glue sticks
a 24 pack of #2 pencils
a whole pack of erasers
1 roll of paper towels
2 bottles of hand sanitizer
1 pack of Clorox wipes ( for the desks)
paper plates and paper cups

This is just a sample…some lists are longer than this one…Now tell me this isn’t ridiculous!

My first grade teacher; Miss Sally, would have have fell out of her desk chair laughing had she seen this list and then she would have gotten mad!

Miss Sally drove the same black model A ( or was it a T?) Ford car the whole time she was a teacher back in the 50’s and 60’s. So that alone should tell you she did not believe in waste such as this. This car was one that had the hand crank on the front of it.

Dear old Miss Sally…she was up in her 80’s or 90’s but she would lead us to the bathroom, where she made it her business to see that we all, one by one, washed our little hands correctly…using plain old soap and water…not hand sanitizer….and we dried them on brown paper towels supplied by the school in the bathroom.

If a child came to school with a cold and had a runny nose or such, the parents sent tissues for them…or a handkerchief…(or a rag if you were poor)….If all else failed, we went to the school bathroom and got a wad of toilet tissue. We sure as heck didn’t have to bring three boxes of tissues for Heaven’s sake!

Our desks got wiped off by the janitor, or the teacher, or kids being held after school, later… after we went home…so we didn’t bring Clorox wipes either.

Paper plates and paper cups were only for birthday parties, valentine parties or such and the parents of the child or the PTA mother and/or teacher supplied them at the time of the party.

We knew to bring a pencil, a pack of notebook paper, (or one of those FAT pencils and an ABC tablet if younger), but that was pretty much all, until we got into high school. On up in grade we did have to have composition books, rulers, folders and such too. If we happen to forget something, or gave out of paper, or say our pencil broke or the eraser fell off….well, we either borrowed one from a friend or we made do until the next day.

Of course I can see having to bring pencils, paper, and even a glue stick…but whole packs of them???? I have heard that these extra items are for the children that do not bring such. What I would like to know is….If a child comes to school without even pencil or paper or a Kleenex to blow their nose on for goodness sake, why aren’t the parents of these children contacted right then and there?

The way I see it…If there is a real need for assistance, or the child is being neglected intentionally, then maybe donations can be raised or if need be, the local family and children services contacted.

It is not right, and down right wrong to put the burden of cost for these extra supplies on parents that are already having a hard enough time furnishing clothes and supplies for their own children.

Bless your heart,
Rest on in peace Miss Sally…

Because if you were here today….

You would definitely be mad.


Sunday, July 18, 2010


There is a lady in front of me , as I walk the walkway to the front door of the nursing home. She very quickly punches in the security code, so I am spared doing so.
As I enter the lobby, I catch a glimpse of my mama rolling her wheel chair around the corner…I figure she is headed toward her room, but as I rounded the corner, I find that I had been wrong…my mama has stopped to chat with a lady. A lady  that is in a semi-comatose state. Mama is holding a pretty good one sided conversation with her as I come up behind her. I grab hold of the handles to her chair and say “Hello mama, I love you!”  She quickly turns her head to be able to see who has hold of her and says, “ Have you come to roll me back to my room?”
I stare into her blue eyes and I wait for a flicker of recognition. When it finally comes, she thinks I am her long dead cousin’s daughter…and my heart sinks.
I know this is going to be another hard visit.
I slowly roll her to her room and when we get there, we both notice that the room is cold as ice…so I quickly go and turn the air down… because my Mama is cold natured.
When I get that done, I turn and go back to her and sit on her bed. She is sitting there with the brightest smile on her face. I ask her how she has been doing and she quickly tells me about the cold she has…a cold that she has had for years…and how it is all in her chest. (Where this pretend cold came from and why it has stuck around in her mind all these years, no one knows, but I believe it is her way of knowing that she has to have help because she is sick….Through all the years that I have known her, my mama never let anyone help her, or tend to her…so I figure that in her mind, she has to be sick to stay in the ‘hospital’.)
Mama asks me who I am…and I tell her, "Mama, I am Carlene; your baby.” She thinks about that for only a  minute before her face lights up and her eyes begin to sparkle and she says, “Carlene! Are you my baby girl?” My heart lifts and just as I am saying , “Yes, mama, I am your baby”…I see her eyes begin to dull and glaze over and I know that she has already forgotten me…her baby girl. My mama has no short term memory left and what you tell her only remains for a minute before it is gone…and forgotten.
Here is part of the conversation we had today…..

Mama: “ How’s your mama?”
Me: “ She is okay”  ( I learned  a while back not to antagonize her by trying to get her to understand the truth…and my mama is okay…sort of.)
Mama: “Why don’t you come live with us? I will make sure that you have plenty to eat”  ( I don’t know yet who the ‘us’ is…but that’s my mama for you…always worried about folks going hungry…)
Me: “I can’t…I have to work”
Mama: “ What…I can’t hear you. Tell it to this ear.” ( she leans forward and points to her right ear.)
Me:I have to work!” ( leaning forward and trying to talk loudly into her ear and trying to make sure my pronunciation is clear)
Mama: “ Whaaaaaaat???? I can’t hear you…try it again” as she shakes her ear vigorously and leans forward….again.
Me: I have to work, I can’t live with you.”  ( I say this as I am groping around in my purse to find an ink pen and piece of paper…It is strange how her hearing improves when I start writing what I say down!
Mama:Please come and live with us…you won’t have no worries, no rentnothing…” She is smiling and clapping her hands now like a little girl….
Me: “ Okay mama”
Mama: “ Really!!?…My Mama loves you to death and I won’t let the kids bother you” (She is talking about her mama…Who the kids are, I don’t know…unless they are us…me and my sisters and brothers back in the past)
Mama: “ Are  you staying with your mama? How is Aunt Hallie Armour? She was my favorite aunt! Please tell her that I love her. She can come live with us too! After you left that least time,  I missed you so much. ” 
I am just nodding silently now…
Mama:  “I’ve been going to school…are you still in school too? I can quit…the way things are now…”  ( she lets the rest just hang there.
Mama: “ Why don’t you come live with us? Walt loves yall too.  Do you like the country?” ( ‘Walt’ was my daddy…my hero…the man I thought walked on water….He died in 1985. ‘The country’ is where we grew up…on HORSESHOE BEND.)
Mama: “ I don’t know when they are going to come get me…they haven’t said.” ( I don’t know what she meant by this…but it gave me an eerie feeling, since she had been talking about all those loved ones that have gone on to the afterlife…)
By this time, I am silently nodding…biting my lip and trying my damndest to swallow the ever growing lump in my throat and not  cry in front of her as I tell her I have to leave…and yes, I may be back tonight……
As I go stand out in the hall…the nurse finds me crying and asks what is wrong…when I tell her how mama doesn’t know me and how it hurts so bad….she says that maybe I should come more and more often and stay longer and longer each time I come …
Now, I know she is trying her best to be helpful, but I am thinking…
Dear Lord…Can’t she see how this is killing me????
There is no daddy anymore….
There is no granny….
 There is no home back on HORSESHOE BEND
They are all gone….
Except in her mind.