Sunday, December 8, 2013


Holidays are a time for family. This year be sure to hug people just a little bit tighter, and be thankful for every moment you have together. You never know when it may be the last time you get the chance to be together. 

My daddy passed away on Black Friday. A light went out of our lives when we lost him. Daddy had lots of friends. Everybody liked him and told me he was always joking, or had a story to tell. His friends held a procession for him at the funeral home. The memorial was this weekend.

We didn't have a memorial sooner because Colt was finishing his CAPSTONE Project which is the final class for construction management before graduating. Colt made his presentation this week. He came home with honors in Sigma Alpha Pi and Sigma Lambda Chi. He's going to look spectacular wearing his ribbon and a couple of ropes and 2 pins.

I wish Daddy could see him graduate. My parents have been banking on Colt graduating from Southern Polytechnic State University for over four years. Daddy always encouraged the boys to get a good education and make something of themselves. 

Colt took Daddy up on his offer to send him to college. We are all so proud of Colt, and Daddy was, too. Everybody said that Daddy loved to brag about the boys. We never dreamed of Daddy passing away so graduation will be bitter-sweet.

Daddy was a driving force in our lives. He will be greatly missed.

Schylar, Katie, Scout, Amanda, Kiersten, Tony, Denise, Todd, Carmen, Andy, Noody, and Carole

Diane and Larry

Albert T. Silvers, Edwadene McAllister, Delbert Callahan

Merry Christmas


Friday, November 1, 2013


Today I was sitting in Colt's room playing on his computer when I heard a big "BAM". I jumped up immediately and headed out the door as I said, "Somebody had a wreck!" Colt and Donny weren't far behind. We piled outside to see what was going on.

I could see a flame of fire on the shoulder of the road. By the time I got to the end of the driveway the fire was out but wreckage was strewn across the highway. Traffic was stopped in both directions and some people were headed to the scene of the accident. 

A motorcycle wheel was laying on the shoulder of the road beside the driveway of the church near our house. Further down the road there was a blue car in the ditch on the other side of the road. A motorcycle was laying down at the second driveway of the church.

People gathered around a man laying on the pavement. Several men and two ladies were trying to comfort him. One lady, kneeling down beside him was trying to keep him calm and awake. Another woman was on a cell phone calling 911 and the young man's father. Traffic began to back up in both directions before long.

Two guys were in the blue car. They weren't as badly hurt as the motorcyclist. One man said he was the driver. He told me he was trying to pass a car when he ran into the motorcycle head on. He admitted it was all his fault. He hadn't seen the motorcycle until it was too late. 

An ambulance came and transported the motorcycle rider to the hospital. He was in serious condition.

Soon two wreckers came and loaded up the motorcycle and the car and took them away. Finally, the road was cleared and everything looked back to normal.

With that in mind, and the holidays on the way, everybody needs to drive carefully and keep an eye out for other drivers, especially motorcyclists and bike riders. You never know when one small decision can change someone's life. Stay safe and don't speed. Five extra minutes isn't worth anyone's life.

Samantha, Dawn, and Larry

Roy and Sara



Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Happy Halloween

Resaca Cemetery
The Family Plot
The Grave Digger
Working The Night Shift
Courtesy of Scout

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

I Give Up

I give. I finally give up. I don't understand chess and I certainly don't understand politics. I never was a shrewd and savvy player. No wonder I don't understand the nuances of politics. I was sure we were headed for a war in Syria and all of a sudden the Russians (the RUSSIANS!) intervened and Syria volunteered to turn over their chemical weapons. I never saw that coming. 

Whether President Obama knew the Russians were willing to mediate with Syria about averting an American intervention in their civil war, or it was all a wonderful case of serendipity, I don't care. I'm just happy we're not getting involved in another war. 

The maneuver was a brilliant one. It was like watching a chess master tournament. Obama played the war card, one every conservative dearly loves. I bet it broke their greedy little hearts to side against war after all the wars they've led us into over the years and all the millions they have amassed. They wouldn't have hesitated if Romney was president. That is another good reason Romney wasn't elected. Anytime America enters into a war, or conflict in a foreign country our country bleeds money which gets syphoned into weapons and artillery. War is a money maker for the manufacturers of war.

President Obama hasn't been able to do anything to lead this country in a better future without fighting the Republicans every inch of the way. Mr. Obama is not a stupid man. He knows they will oppose everything he supports. They proved that in their relentless attempts to destroy Obamacare. 

I told you I give up. If every other person on the planet wants to call it Obamacare, who am I to disagree although it really is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). 

If we call it Obamacare it will be part of our lexicon and the President will always be remembered as the President who gave all Americans health care, like President Lyndon Johnson is credited with giving us medicare. That will be a wonderful legacy for President Obama. He promised to give every American insurance in memory of his mother who died of cancer and he kept that promise. 

Presidents have tried to pass some form  of universal  healthcare insurance in America as far back as 1936 by Franklin Delano Roosevelt. It took seventy-seven years and the election of a black president to finally get it done. In that one regard we can thank George W. Bush for that because he left the country in a financial meltdown. 

A social tsunami ensued and America voted for a black man, or a mulatto*, if you will, for President of the United States of America for the first time. Caucasians were no longer top dog on the social ladder in America. That gnawed at a lot of conservative and entitled white men and women. The politicians played on the majorities fears and executed a plan to block every move he makes.

President Obama always expressed a desire for bi-partisanship when making executive decisions. He repeatedly tried to reach across the aisle in an attempt to get the Republicans to work with him. He offered concessions that frankly made me furious. He suggested making some cuts in social security and welfare programs. Still, the Republicans wouldn't budge. They wanted all, or nothing. Nothing else would do for them. They tried to back him against the wall and make him look like a lackey, licking their boots and bowing to their wishes. He refused to do so. He has shown amazing stoicism and endurance. 

The President realizes the Republicans are doing everything in their power to make his presidency impotent and irrelevant by obstructing him at every turn. He is a lame duck president and doesn't have to mind him p's and q's anymore. He is calling the Republicans out on their lies and duplicity by using tactics that clearly show their hypocrisy and motives. His attempt to lure Republicans into siding with him to get involved in Syria shows the truth behind that lie. Republicans will never agree with anything the President wants. I don't know if they're more mad because they hate Democrats that much, or they're just galled to have a black man in the White House. 

I saw horrible vitriol from Republicans when President Clinton was in the White House but never as bad as this. The Republicans and Democrats worked together on the country's business. Now Washington is like a class of seventh graders who get in a tiff and refuse to reconcile. They won't agree on anything. Our country is divided and it is becoming shameful and embarrassing to watch the extremists in Washington try to steer our country off a cliff. It is even more frustrating to watch them try to strip Americans of their hard earned rights, the most valuable being their right to vote. 

We are on the precipice of the complete shutdown and defaulting on our debts and the Republicans have been playing the blame game and denying any responsibility for the shutdown although this shutdown originally started because the Republicans wanted to block Obamacare. They are willing to destroy the economy of our nation, nay, the economy of the whole fricking world just to stick it to Obama. They are pretending that they are representing their constituents but in reality are being duplicitous. They want to bring down the government.

World War II veterans descended on the Capitol after the government shutdown that closed most non-essential federal programs in America, demanding their right to cross closed barriers and exercise their rights to view the monuments. Republican congressmen and senators took advantage of the veterans visit for a photo-op and a little speechifying, don't ya' know. Veterans need to wise up and realize the Republicans are not their friend.

The Republicans are the same men who are trying to cut veterans benefits, social security benefits, meals-on-wheels, reduced lunches, food stamps, head start, and other programs our veterans and their families, and the elderly, and disabled, and the poorest among us depend on to live. Why the hell can't they understand that? I'd really like to know. Is it more important to line your own pockets and obey your corporate overlords than to represent those very people that most need real representation in the government? 

I don't know where we're going as a nation and that scares me. I don't know if Obamacare is the final answer. From the things I've been reading about socialized medicine the best healthcare is universal and the most progressive governments use the people's tax money to pay medical costs. They have a tight hand on controlling cost of medicine, doctors, tests, and administration. 

I've read stories of people from other countries who never get a bill when they have to go to the hospital. Wouldn't that be the best system in America? That is even better than the single payer plan where the government only supervises costs but the patients still pay out. Every citizen, no matter what is wrong with them, could see a doctor and be treated when necessary. People wouldn't have to endure illnesses or injuries because they couldn't afford medical care.

The Republicans have quit harping on Obamacare and are now trying to wring some kind of concession out of the Democratic party via the shutdown. I've been hearing rumblings of infighting in the Republican party with some people demanding a holdout until they get what they want, but more levelheaded members of the party trying to get them to capitulate.

I get upset with the president when he implies he is amicable to the opposition and willing to negotiate with America's social security safety net but I'm beginning to believe that the president knows they will never willingly go along with him and his best bet is to let public pressure work to influence the congressmen to behave like representatives, not obstructionists. 

Whatever happens tomorrow will affect everyone in America. If they aren't willing to raise the debt ceiling it will become worse. People have been on furlough, or working without pay, until the standstill is over. I hope they come to their senses tomorrow or the crap will hit the fan. Just when our economy gets going again the clowns in Washington are going to pull the rug out from under us all. The shutdown and a downgrade in the US economy could tilt us back into a deep recession. If this doesn't work, I'm blaming the Republicans. I hope you do, too. Remember this in 2014. I know I will.

Let's hope the Republicans are willing to capitulate and allow the government to reopen like they promised today.


*mulatto: half white and half black

Friday, October 4, 2013


We've been pretty busy around here. On Saturday the boys went to Mama's and Daddy's to help them. They are mowing so Daddy doesn't have to mow again. He's still bleeding sometimes.

Daddy doesn't trust them to do the job right so he usually walks along beside them on the riding mower telling them how to mow. I wish he would quit obsessing. You have to eventually let go and turn control over to someone else if you want help. The job may not be done exactly like you do it but at least you're getting it done.

Donny and I went to the Cracker Barrel on Sunday and met some of my Facebook friends for brunch. I think he thought they were imaginary people I always talk about since I don't have any friends in real life. We met Jennie and her husband Gary. They live in Calhoun. 

We also got to meet Piette and her husband, Paul. They live in North Carolina. She was picking up some kitties that Jennie has been caring for. They're animal rescuers. They work hard to get the animals vetted and find good homes for them.

I was full of trepidation and had a hard time sleeping the night before, thinking about meeting people I only knew on Facebook, but my fears were unfounded and I was ecstatic to finally meet Jennie and Piette in person. 

Our friend Kristie was supposed to go to the Cracker Barrel with us but I wasn't able to get hold of her that day. She lives in Calhoun. Kristie's met Jennie and me, and Jennie's met Kristie and Piette. I've never met Jennie or Piette. Kristie's never met Piette. I felt like we were going to a party.

It didn't take long before we all felt comfortable talking to each other. Jennie has three daughters. Piette also has three daughters. They were commiserating with each other about the drama of raising girls. I thought it was fascinating. I have two sons and don't know much about raising girls. I always thought boys were a handful.

Jennie and I were both surprised that the other was short. I think we're both about five feet tall. I usually assume everyone is taller than me. So much for making assumptions about people on the internet.

I've heard so much about Jennie's husband, Gary, it was nice to put a face to the name. She's so funny and descriptive when she tells tales on him, like the time he came in the house and announced he and his buddy were going to go rafting down the river, despite the fact they didn't have a boat, or canoe, or any equipment. I could just imagine one of my boys coming up with a hairbrained idea like that. 

I'd love to ride down the river but I don't think I'm brave enough to risk it. The water is muddy and you can't see rocks and rubbish in the water. If I fell into that nasty water, I'd probably die from hypochondria.

Piette and Paul came by the house to visit and saw our goat, Vinnie, before heading back home . Piette gave me oodles of chocolate and tulip bulbs. She even gave me a bottle of hot sauce. She knows me so well. Piette is such a sweet lady. 

I wasn't expecting company so I hadn't done a "dash and stash". I hope I didn't frighten her away.

I used to be a Flybaby and tried to keep my house clean. I eventually fell off the bandwagon and got into my old habits of letting the clutter overwhelm me, not knowing where to start or how to catch up. You can imagine the mess around here. I've got even more clutter now, after Colt moved back home from Marietta. 

Donny couldn't get over how nice my friends were and what a good time he had meeting them. I guess he thinks my friends would have to be annoying and cantankerous like me to get along with me. Doesn't he know opposites attract? Look at us. Donny's sweet as pie, and I'm not.

I only have a few regrets. For one thing, I was so overwhelmed, I forgot to leave a tip for the waitress. She deserved a tip for taking such good care of all of us. I also forgot to take a picture of everybody while we were at the restaurant. I can't believe in this day and age I still can't remember to take pictures when something special happens. My biggest regret is because Kristie wasn't able to join us. I think she would have enjoyed brunch with everyone. It probably won't ever happen again.

On top of all that excitement, Donny's been painting the fender on Daddy's '39 Ford Deluxe. He scraped it when he tried to back into the garage. Old people!

We also took Buddy back to the vet for his annual checkup this week. He never had any checkups until last year when he nearly died. Colt went to the vet with me to handle Buddy. He growls sometimes. Colt thumped him in the nose and distracted him. He said he saw the vet grin when he did that.

They put a muzzle on him when they did the exam. I ordered one. Maybe we can give him a bath without getting bit. I don't trust Buddy all the time.

We can put the muzzle on Buddy and let him be Hannibal Lecter for Halloween. I guess that makes me Clarice.

Joann, Shannon, Alesha, Lon, Layla, Matt, Devan, Michelle, Kelly, 
Debbie, Chase, Barry, Diane, and Summer

Kelly and Troy
Piette and Paul



Friday, September 27, 2013

Easy Asparagus

I love asparagus. Daddy used to have an asparagus bush planted beside the creek at his house. It came up every year. I didn't realize it was edible because we always let it sprout out and become a fluffy, airy bush. After we started eating it, if finally died out. I wish we still had one. They're lovely and delicate.

I never cooked asparagus because it was too long and I didn't know how to cook it. I thought it had to be cooked in boiling water. It took me years before I realized I could cook asparagus in my trusty little old blue speckle pan without cutting the stalk off. It's so good and easy, I thought I'd share my simple recipe with you all.
I washed the asparagus and set it aside to drain. I drizzled some olive oil in my blue speckle pan. I brushed it on the bottom with a basting brush. I do that instead of using cooking spray.

olive oil

I cut off a good chunk of butter and melted it in the microwave. I added an equal amount of olive oil and sprinkled salt and pepper into the butter and oil mixture.
I poured the oil and butter all over the asparagus and put the lid on the pan. I cooked the asparagus on 350 degrees for about 20-25 minutes. 
This is such an easy recipe anybody can make it. The pan is long enough I didn't even cut off the asparagus. I enjoy making asparagus now that I have a good pan to cook it in.
Like I always say, "If it ain't easy, it ain't happenin'."


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Roller Coaster

Lots of things have been going on since Daddy had to go to the emergency room a few weeks ago. He ended up staying in the hospital all week. He was passing blood and they couldn't get it to stop. On Friday they ran a camera up his urethra and looked around. The urologist called after surgery and told me nothing looked cancerous, but the bleeding was at the prostate. He didn't know why. They sent Daddy home after that. 

That was a strange week. The hospital was almost like wandering through a rabbit hole. They are remodeling and adding on a wing or something and there are places partitioned off and you practically need a map to navigate the halls. 

Mama and I went with Daddy to surgery and it was like walking through a maze. A nurse showed us an exit that came out near the emergency room, close to the elevators when they took Daddy into surgery.  We would have never found our way back to Daddy's room the way we came. Mama and I made our way back to the room to wait for him to get out of surgery. 

They finally wheeled Daddy back to the room loaded up on morphine. Daddy said it really hurt. He has a narrow urethra which made it more difficult. I hope he doesn't have to go through that again.

I was afraid Mama wasn't going to make it. She had a hard time getting around the hospital because of bronchitis. Daddy made them get Mama a wheelchair so she wouldn't have to walk down the halls. She couldn't have made it on her own. She had to stop and rest every little bit. Whenever she has trouble breathing I am afraid blood clots are in her lungs again. 

When we came to the hospital to visit Daddy she wouldn't let me find her a wheelchair to ride in. She walked all the way. Daddy fussed at her. He said they had volunteers who just loved to push people around when they couldn't walk on their own. 

Mama is stubborn. So is Daddy. And you wonder where I get it from.

I offered to mow the yard Thursday but they didn't want me to mow that day. I told Daddy to call me and let me know if he wants the yard mowed anytime. He's getting over a surgical procedure and shouldn't push himself. They had to sedate him. Daddy had finally stopped bleeding when they let him go home but he got a wild hair and decided to mow the yard that Saturday. He  started bleeding again. 

I don't know what it is about men, or people in general, but they do some of the dumbest things. One time my grandfather had back surgery to fix his discs. It felt so good, he decided he could plow the garden not long after surgery. By the time he got off the tractor he had messed his back up so bad he had back pain for the rest of his life. I tried to help Daddy avoid the same mistake.

Daddy decided to try mowing the yard again a couple of weeks later. He only rode for a little while before he allowed Mama to finish mowing. He started bleeding as bad as he did when he went to the emergency room. Fortunately, he had an appointment with his urologist the next day. The urologist didn't want to do anything else until Daddy healed from the laparoscopy surgery.

I told you Daddy is stubborn. Maybe he will finally listen to me and let me know when he wants the yard mowed.

In other news, Colt's not working with Scout anymore. He missed a couple of Monday's and Bob took it upon himself to let Colt go. I got Colt to write a letter explaining he had missed those days because he was working on his final Capstone project and had to work on it and meet teachers and other students to work on it on days that they were available. I thought Bob knew Colt had a very important semester and his classwork came first. Colt wasn't laying out. Scout never did give the letter to Bob.

Bob told Colt he needed someone full time and said Colt wasn't fulfilling his needs. Scout said that Bob never fires anyone and his excuse didn't make any sense. 

Scout doesn't even work 40 hours a week. He's lucky if he gets to work four full days a week and half a day on Friday. Forget it if it rains unless they are lucky enough to be building a barn or something. 

Scout is considered "self employed". He doesn't have any benefits. That is why I think it is so important for everyone to have health care in America. His job is dangerous and demanding. Lots of men couldn't handle working with their hands and back all day. More than one person has quit working for Bob after they found out how hard the job really is.

Scout said the new guy Bob replaced Colt with wasn't doing very good. He said the boy couldn't hammer and just piddled around, wasting time. It looks like Bob didn't get such a bargain after all.

Scout and Colt's friend, Allan, is also working for Bob. One day Scout said they had been working all day long and Allan said he had to stop and get something to eat because he was feeling sick. Bob brushed them off and said they had a couple more trailers to get up first. They were baling hay.

Allan has severe diabetes and has gone into a coma several times. Allan went to the truck and found a honey bun to eat. Scout was very upset with Bob for ignoring Allan and not giving them a lunch break. Allan wasn't able to work on Friday because he was sick.

Allan had to go to two hospitals over the weekend because of his sugar diabetes. Since Allan hasn't been working long, and he doesn't have any insurance, he can't afford his insulin. Allan is a young man. He's the same age as Scout. Every time his body goes into a coma it damages his organs. It makes me furious because people like Allan have to do without insulin to help them control their diabetes through no fault of their own. 

I can't understand how anybody would turn their backs on people who don't have insurance, or any money for health care. There's something wrong with a country that thinks it's okay as long as they get theirs but to hell with other people because they don't "deserve" health care. It especially makes me mad to think that our elected politicians feel that way.

Autumn leaves are falling and the light isn't quite as bright. I'm sorry to see another summer ending but I'm excited to see what lies ahead. 


Sunday, September 15, 2013

Polk County Burchfields

*article courtesy of Jasper E. Rogers, former principal of Valley Point High School via Roy Burchfield, aka "Daddy  Bear".

Polk County Heritage
Two Polk Burchfields Families?

by Marian Bailey Presswood, Polk County Historian & Archivist

I suppose all of you know by now that I practically drop everything to help a young person who is interested in finding out about their family.  Guess that's because so many of us have the same sad story about waiting until everyone is gone who could have easily told us the information we're now digging so desperately to find.  That's exactly how I got into this "searching for dead people stuff" back in the mid 80's because my dad, with big tears in his eyes,  said the same thing. 
"Why didn't I ask. . .?"

So that's what happened when a young man, only eighteen years old, sent me an email this week asking about his Burchfield, Norwood, Shell, Polk folks. Bet you can figure it out from there, something got sidelined - and it wasn't his request!

And that's the first time I realized there must be two Burchfield families here that either never connect, or it's somewhere around the Garden of Eden- I never could find it.  But with the naming pattern on both sides of Robert and Nathaniel "Nathan", they really must connect somewhere- I just didn't see it.  And they both came from the same general area of North Carolina to Upper East Tennessee, and lived in the very same community here in Polk County nearly all their lives.

The young man descends from James Arthur Burchfield, born 1897, who was married to Naomi Norwood, daughter of Marion Frank and Cora Ann Gardner Norwood, and they lived over in the Benton Station Community. Arthur was the son of Wilse and Mary Jane Shell and his siblings were Mike, John H., Julie, and Horace Lee. 

Both Wilse and Mary Jane are buried in the Burchfield Cemetary up in Springtown, as are both Wilse's parents, Nathan and Julia Caroline Mashburn Burchfield. This 1832/1914 Nathan's parents were William, also called "Wilse", and Nancy Elizabeth Baker, daughter of James C. and Jane Estes Baker who came out of Ashe, North Carolina to Cades Cove. One of Nathan's sisters, Juda Emaline, married Jesse Hammons, from a prominent Polk family, and another sister, Dolly, married Charles Hughes also a pioneer Polk family. One line further back is also a Nathaniel (1776-1863) and wife Nancy Anna McKinney. Some researchers have further back, but since I didn't do the research I won't go there.

Mashburn is a common name in Polk research, and Julia Caroline Mashburn is the daughter of William Mashburn and Lucinda Peel, and the granddaughter of another William (1774-1832) and Mary Ann Dinsmore. Some enumerators write that name as Washburn - maybe they're a bit hard of hearing, or at some time it really was Washburn. In any event, that looks to be what's on their marriage record, 16 February 1860 in Monroe County. Nathan and Julia Burchfield had six children, John (m. Ellen Chastain, went to AR), Betty (m. Zach Williams), Wilse (m. Mary Jane Shell), William (m. Gracie Jenkins), James (m. Docia Womack), and Nep (m. Dama Alice ?).

Moving to the 1864 Wilse Burchfield's wife, Mary Jane Shell, she was born 16 October 1872 to Howard and Lucinda Hampton Shell. Lucinda was Howard's first wife and according to those old notes kept by Uncle Jack Bates she died 23 September 1899. Howard and Lucinda are in the 1880 census with Mary Jane, Benjamin, Malissa E., James and William. Widowed Howard is in the 1900 census with Susan, Jim, Bill, Ellen, Charlie, Peter, Johnie, Lyle, and Tom. That's a lot of kids in a household with no mother, isn't it? Howard's Findagrave memorial is #8536309 in Kirkland Cemetery, later known as Butler, and you can just click on her name from there to see Mary Jane's.

Pictured is Wilse S. Burchfield, sitting on his front porch in the 1940's as he loved to do and visit with anyone dropping by. The other picture is Frank and Cora Norwood, possibly with their first child, Cleadis, born in 1908. They look really young and surely the other children, Ella Mae, Naomi and Howard, would have been included in the picture had they been born.  (Thanks to Eric Nolan for sharing the pictures.)

Next week we'll tackle the "no d" Burchfiel family, which is probably the one with which you're the most familiar.  Until then, Preserve YOUR Heritage!

*re-typed by me

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

I'm Livid

An estimated 100,000 people have died in the Syrian civil war since it began. Over 5000 children and 3900 women have been reported dead. Our government wants to get involved in the conflict in Syria since they have used poison gases to kill adults and children, totaling an estimated 1400 people. 

I hate war. If it were left up to me, America would never go into another war in the middle east again, unless it was a direct threat to Americans. The countries in the middle east are thousands of years old. There are many countries all around Syria that are strong enough to squash this insidious gassing of the Syrian people by the supposed Syrian government. They're still not sure whether the gas came from the government or rebel factions in Syria. We walked into the war in Iraq blindly following George W. Bush and it costed America over 4000 lives, not including the approximately 3000 people whose lives were lost in the 911 attack on America.

Let me break it down to you in the simplest terms I can. If 100,000 people have died in Syria from gunshots and women and children were slaughtered and we didn't intervene, how is it possible to become so outraged when 1400 people were gassed? Simply put 100,000 total, no reaction. 1400 people, time for war. 1400 people is 1.4% of the people who were killed in this slaughter. ONE POINT FOUR PERCENT!

I find it disingenuous for President Obama to suggest we engage in another war in the middle east. These people are pitiful but America has a terrible history of supporting one side against another and then being attacked and hated by the side we supported. Isn't it time we let Russia, China, and all the nations around Syria handle this problem and keep our noses out of it? Don't we realize that while Washington is flapping it's gums about attacking Syria, the world is watching these debates and will be prepared for any American involvement in their war? Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and dozens of other powerful and rich countries surround Syria. Why do WE have to be the ones to intervene? And why the hell is President Obama determined to follow in Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II's footsteps? Do all men who become president lose their mind and want to exert their power (our military might) over countries that have nothing to do with us? On another side note, why the hell is it alright to get involved in Iraq, Afghanistan, and everywhere else in the middle east but we totally blew off the deaths in Darfur and other countries?

Our troops have been at war since 1990 during the Persian Gulf War, aka the First Gulf War. They have been stressed to the max and their nerves and lives have been disrupted. It is time to quit acting like we are the only ones in the world who can do anything. Isn't that what the United Nations is for, to settle disputes and decide when the world needs to intervene? Everybody knows that the government may decide to get involved in wars and military actions around the world but when the soldiers come home and can't find employment, display mental problems because of horrific acts, and are wounded the government refuses to support them and offer assistance. They only want the soldiers to shut up or die. They sure don't want to pay for the medical help they will all need eventually.

Let's stop the charade and quit being Big Brother to the world. Use diplomatic channels to put pressure on Syria. Don't help kill more people by dropping bombs indiscriminately. Everyone knows that's a lie, too.


Monday, September 2, 2013


The flowers are looking great around the house. It has a tropical vibe. I planted some black elephant ears out front between my other elephant ears and fire poker red canna lilies. They've come a long way and are just about as big as the elephant ears I've had for years.The black elephant ears spread by a root system so it won't be long before they become a nuisance.

We still haven't finished painting the house. It's my fault. I was supposed to paint some boards before they're put on the house and I never did my job. Blame it all on me. Everybody else does.

Daddy called me today and told me to get up there. He's been passing blood and the doctor didn't know what the problem was so he sent daddy to an urologist. The urologist did some tests on him but they haven't got the results back yet. Today he was still sick and Mama was, too. Mama has been having a hard time breathing and the doctor told her she has bronchitis. She sounds like she is out of breath all the time. 

Daddy wasn't able to see the doctor today because it's Labor Day and all the doctors take the day off. Isn't that nice? When you're old and sick you just have to suck it up and try to hold out until a weekday or give in and go to the emergency room. 

You'd think doctors would be able to leave someone in charge of their patients over the holidays but instead they're hooked up to their patients via the internet. Mama talked to the doctor over the phone and had to give the doctor a list of Daddy's medicines. He took Daddy off blood thinners like aspirin and fish oil. I didn't even know that fish oil was a blood thinner.

Mama was lucky when she had to be hospitalized when she got sick. Her doctor was on vacation and another doctor was attending to his patients. The doctor diagnosed blood clots and scarring in her lungs. 

Mama's regular doctor never listens to her when she tells him about her breathing problems and always lectures her because she used to smoke, about 20 years ago! He is so fixated on making Mama feel guilty, and associates every symptom she has with her former habit, that he doesn't listen and try to find out what's really wrong with her. 

If it hadn't been for the wonderful doctor who took Mama seriously when she was complaining with shortness of breath, she might have died. Her regular doctor always diagnoses her as having bronchitis. I don't entirely trust him now since Mama has been short of breath all summer and he thinks it's still just bronchitis. Mama said she's going back to her breathing doctor soon. I hope he's able to help her. She's miserable when she can't do anything.

My idea of a great summer is when nobody gets sick, or hurt, or has any accidents. It's funny how your views change when you get older. I used to hate being bored and not having any excitement. Today I thrive on it.

Butch, Katy, Kim, Susan, Carol, Larry, Corbin, Gail, Melissa, Melody, Erin, Emily, Debbie, and Jesse

Resaca Rose

Gary McNamer, Robert Burchfield, Jack Rat

Labor Day, Rosh Hashanah*, Yom Kippur*, Autumn

*Rosh Hashanah: Jewish New Year, 4th
*Yom Kippur: Day of Atonement, 13-14th


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Cutting Back

We had some visitors today. The electric company sent tree trimmers to cut back growth touching the power lines. I usually get upset and demand they don't cut my magnolia trees back drastically. You should see some of the trees they cut around here.

Today I took the attitude of being polite for once. I told them I loved my magnolia trees and didn't want them butchered. The guys must have been here before because they promised not to damage them. They had to cut branches that were growing over the lines and into them. 

I was actually happy with the results. Magnolia trees don't grow very fast and they never look as good after being cut up the trunk of the tree. The tree trimmers tried not to damage the shape of the trees.

We have to go through the same old song and dance every few years. I live in terror of not being home one day when they come by to cut my trees. 

I read somewhere that every full grown tree increases the value of your property by $1,500. Two giant, beautiful magnolia trees in our front yard have to be worth at least that much. 

If someone hadn't cut back the limbs years ago, those limbs would be touching the ground at the base of the tree. As it is, we are able to sit under the magnolia trees in the shade during the summer. 

Can't you imagine sitting in the shade under our magnificent magnolia trees sipping on a mint julep, soaking up some southern hospitality? I can. Y'all come.

Mint Julep
1 Tablespoon Water
3 Sprigs of Mint
1 Teaspoon Superfine Sugar*
Mash until the Mint is easily Smelled
Fill with Shaved Ice
Add 3 Ounces Bourbon
Stir until Pre-chilled Collins Glass is Frosted
Garnish with Slice of Orange
Float some Sprigs of Mint on Top

(*Powdered Sugar may be used)


Friday, August 16, 2013

Hot Stuff

I've been fighting with my old second-hand gas stove for a few years. The stove didn't have the right orifices when we got it and the flames were never high. The only eye that ever got anything hot finally started getting lower and lower. Every night when I started cooking I would begin to gripe about my crappy stove. Don told me that I should get a new stove and quit complaining about it. He said I could pick out any stove I like.

I wanted to get a stove with a convection oven. My mother has one, and it's really nice. I began going to the stores around here looking at different ones. At first, I thought about getting a stainless steel stove. I even thought about getting a white stove to match my cabinets in the kitchen.

I went to Lowe's and Home Depot in Dalton and looked at them. I also went to Home Depot in Calhoun. After I saw the stove I was interested in I went back several times to try to decide which color I wanted to get. I found a five burner stainless steel GE gas stove in Dalton, but when I went to the Calhoun Home Depot I saw a GE in a new color, slate. They were both alike except for the color. Decisions, decisions, decisions.

The sales lady in Calhoun told me that the stove was on sale. 

I took Don with me to look at the stoves Saturday. He and I both agreed on the slate colored stove. I decided to go to Calhoun and order my stove on Tuesday. When I got there I found out that the stove on display was on clearance. I love a sale! I was so happy, I bought a matching over-the-stove Adora microwave. I rushed home to tell Don and he and I went back to pick up my new appliances. 

I haven't got the microwave over the stove yet. The guys are going to have to do a little renovation to make room for the new microwave. I'm tickled to death. I'm not used to such luxury. 

Every dinner is an adventure. Tonight I cooked a roast in my blue speckled pan and it turned out golden brown. I can't believe it. I made some delicious biscuits that rose like a dream. Maybe I'll begin to enjoy cooking again. It's hard to believe that something as simple as a stove can make a woman so happy. Maybe I'm becoming Betty Crocker. We'll see.

Happy birthday to me. I made out like a bandit.


Sunday, August 4, 2013


Boy! This has been a mild summer. Temperatures are usually in the 100's and everything is dried up by now. Instead, it has been milder and very humid. All in all, it makes for some lazy summer days where we all sit around hoping for a breeze. Even with all the lower temperatures, I've noticed leaves falling off the trees in the backyard. We keep inching towards autumn.

My computer is being a little witch here lately and doesn't want to let me work on anything. I'm having a devil of a time trying to get it to accommodate me. I don't know why everything inanimate is messing with me right now. Not only is my computer giving me crap, but one of my smoke detectors had been going off for days until someone finally put a new battery in it (and, hopefully, the other ones as well). Light bulbs keep blowing at such an exponential rate that I should buy stock in lightbulbs. I'd make a killing if everyone had to replace light bulbs as often as I do. I wish they'd last as long as the guarantee but they don't.

Every time I've tried to get on the computer here lately it's frozen up. That's why, if this post seems discombobulated and scattered all over the place, it's because I can't keep a thought in my head long enough to get it posted on here. I don't post a lot when Colt is home anyway because the computer is in his room. He runs me out at night so he can sleep. He is working with Scout this summer.
Last week my Facebook friend, Kristie, posted about a friend of hers who died unexpectedly. She was only 42. I read some of the sweet things people posted about her and thought she must have been a very special person to have so many friends who love her so much. I read a couple of news articles about her and her death. Her husband, John Wayne Mackay, and his mistress, Nichole Michelle Houchin, were arrested for the murder. He was a sergeant in the army at Fort Eustis. Ms. Houchin was also stationed at Fort Eustis.

I got a call from a classmate who told me that Steve Pearson, another former classmate of ours, was Dana Patterson Mackay's stepfather, the woman who had been murdered. Steve is a minister and has been serving at Meadowdale Baptist Church for over 30 years in Calhoun. He  and his family are well known in the community.

On August 3rd* Calhoun Times posted on their front page about the return of Dana Mitchell Patterson's body to Gordon County. An 80 vehicle procession led by Missionaries on Bikes (M.O.B), a church group, escorted her body from Adairsville to Thomas Funeral Home in Calhoun. 

She received front page honors as a Gordon County native, but nowhere in the article does it explain what happened to Dana. The article ignored the fact that Dana had been married, and her husband was arrested for her murder. It didn't mention that her husband conspired with his paramour to kill his wife. 

I can understand the desire to distance yourself and your loved one from the monster who took her life, but it is important not to forget the senseless way she lost her life and the details. Not yet. Not until justice is meted out for Dana. Not until Mackay and Houchin are convicted.

Dana Michelle Patterson* was listed in the August 7th edition of Calhoun Times obituaries. Still no mention about cause of death, or her husband.

What's going on with the Calhoun Times? Why the lack of coverage in the paper?

The trial date has been set. It begins in September of 2014. Patterson Trial Set*

Ashley, Tommie Lyn, Pat, Pam, Myra, Nancy, Nancy, Brenda, Chris, Randy, 
Jonnie Bell, Gloria, Blake, Bob, Justin, Cole, Jerry

Susan and Bob



* edited  8-7-13, 7-23-14 
PBS 8-4-13  Wednesday 1:47 AM EDT

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Turtle Town

Scout must think he's Turtleman. Turtleman is the guy on the Discover channel TV show, Call of the Wildman. Scout saw a turtle in the middle of the road so he stopped and picked it up. He brought it home to show us.
The turtle didn't act afraid and he didn't hide in his shell. He stuck his neck out and started pedaling with his legs as hard and fast as he could go. He looked like he was in a hurry and had places to go. Deep in his little turtle-mind he was probably screaming, "Let me go!"
Scout sat him out at the mulch pile in a shallow container with water in it. We came back inside for a while. When we went back outside . . .
. . . the turtle had disappeared. We don't know where he went. Maybe he'll show up again someday. He's some kind of striped turtle, I think.

I thought the mulch pile would be a lovely place for a turtle. It's full of grubs and worms and scraps. He wouldn't ever starve if he lived there.

We've had some other interesting visitors this year. One night we saw a raccoon swinging upside down on a tree limb eating out of the bird feeder. He looked like a crazy cat doing tricks on a monkeybar.

That could explain what happened to Larry. Oddly enough, the raccoon showed up right after Larry the rooster was found dead, headless, with his tail chewed off. Chickens must be easy pickings. Someone told Scout that 'possums reach through fences and rip chickens heads off. I have a sneaky suspicion that 'coons do that, too.

In another interesting event this summer, Mama and Daddy caught a parrot in their backyard. It's bright green and red. They bought a cage to keep it in. He sits in the den with Daddy watching TV.

I don't know what's going on but it looks like this is going to be a year of unexpected surprises. Just as long as we don't discover a swarm of killer bees, or runaway boa constrictors, it's all good. Right?

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