Thursday, February 11, 2016


Our niece Honey sent us her “Flat Traveler” last week---the newer version of Flat Stanley, made by the sender in her own self-portrait.

We were asked to make her clothing “to fit our climate and activities,” and so Sweetpea and her Mama and I sat down on Saturday and cooked her up a tee-ninecy wardrobe to befit some of the places we wanted to take her, as well as a few outfits just to represent things in our state. 

She wore her little parka to make a snowman in our backyard.

As well as to bundle up warm for the FREEZING winds of downtown on the circle for a tour of the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument:

Our wonderful Symphony Hall (wish it had been evening, for it’s splendiferous with all the marquee lights).

See how cold it was?---the buffalo fountain-spouts are frozen.  We were just trying to keep our noses from freezing in that FOUR degrees, and our little guest from flapping in the wind---it was Kick-Ice COLD, folks!

We went on a short tour out at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with Honey in her little race outfit.

With some of the 265,000 permanent seats in the distance.   Another 165,000 are set up in the infield on Race Day---can you IMAGINE being in the middle of 400,000 yelling, cheering fans as those race-cars roar around the track?

And some of her little outfits for the week in Indy.   Amazing what you can do with imagination, a little Google, a Box of 96 Crayolas, and a pair of manicure scissors.  

This last one was because we all wore our orange T-shirts on Sunday.  And because PEYTON.


Flat Honey is in the mail with her new wardrobe (and minus Stanley’s grilled cheese and toothbrush tube of milk) headed back home to show her second grade all the sights.  

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

THIS IS HOW I . . . .

This is a lot like how I look when I wake up, folks, with a big old turkey-tail of pillow-head.   Only not with the cute, alert eyes and precious face.

I look in that mirror some days and see my Mother, and other days, it’s like one of those age-progression things they do to find lost people, and I mutter to myself:

Pebbles Flintstone, AS SHE’D LOOK TODAY!!!

Stay warm this snowy day, friends.

Sunday, February 7, 2016


We’re having a little Unsuperbowl Party this afternoon---just a few snacks and some board games for a family get-together, so everyone can get home in time for THE GAME.

None of us are avid sports fans, but we do have a spot in our hearts for Peyton---our common Mississippi roots and his splendid career here in town with the Colts, as well as all his charitable work for Riley Hospital, have made him OURS in a way. 

We wish all the best today and in the future for this caring, giving, honorable GENTLEMAN, who just happens to be a genius in his field.  

Thursday, February 4, 2016


Thirty years ago tonight, Chris and I met.   We’re headed out to dinner in a bit, to celebrate such a momentous occasion, and here’s HOW WE MET.
And another little funny moment, on another ANNIVERSARY.

Saturday, January 30, 2016


The sun was streaming down the stairs when I awoke and came in here---a delightful surprise in the stretch of these iron-cold days.  We still have the screens in the top halves of the doors, and so have not had the “wooden” doors open for some time now.   The almost-Spring scent of grass and sun-warmed hedges floats in, to mingle with the aroma of the big pot of pinto beans and ham simmering on the big old Franklin.   And a lovely aura surrounds the huge bin of throwaway TREATS---all those bits and bobs and quarter-Tups of leftover staling Christmas goodies, all dumped in a dry plastic bucket to be doled out to the birdies on the lawn, for chocolate and spice and vanilla and candied peel and candy melts all mingle in this warm room like a home-style version of walking into the sanctified scents of Laduree or Godiva.

Our house when I was growing up always smelt of BOOKS. We had lots of new BOMC ones which I read much too young, all the ones from our school library, and the loads I lugged home from the little smoky-green board-and-batten library which dispensed books and a cookie now and then. And the old crumbly ones, whose pages would shatter at the corner if you didn't turn with your gentlest touch.

My own personal trove was a gift from a between-generations cousin, who was exactly ten years younger than my Mother and ten older than I. Lynnette was the Nellie Oleson of our time, an absolute terror, a hitter and pincher and tattle-tale whose parents owned one of the two little grocery stores in a neighboring town, and who had an enticing gallery of exquisitely-dressed dolls, ordered from "OFF" for her childhood Christmases and birthdays. She also had BOOKS.

“Bought” books of her own---whole series of Nancy Drew and Judy Bolton and the Maida series and the Hardy Boys and every Tarzan in print. I would look at the dolls (not allowed to touch), but I coveted those books with a grievous avarice, and when I was in third grade, we got the CALL: Come get something she was giving away.

She was putting away childish things, and my Mammaw's joy at the idea that I would be receiving all those gloriously-attired dolls was boundless. She had even discussed shelving with my carpenter Daddy, hoping to provide them with the perfect display area.

We arrived to find three huge boxes, all packed and taped, and so heavy that they required the dolly and the help of a couple of bystanders---they had BOOKS inside, and Mammaw was NOT happy. And I was absolutely mortified that my Dad was handling a big container with "KOTEX" emblazoned on the side, RIGHT THERE IN DAYLIGHT.

But the bubble of joy that displaced all the feeling in my stomach---that anticipation and pre-enjoyment is still a milestone in my life for sheer happiness. I spent the entire Summer immersed in places and lives outside my own realm; I was right there in the front seat of that roadster (in my own smart outfit and dashing hat) as Nancy sped toward the solution to the mystery.

I passed whole days up an enormous pecan tree, trekking the steaming jungles in pursuit of elephant burial grounds and wicked traders, joining in the Jane-rescue with an echoing yodel and a swift vine-swing.

Lynnette gave the dolls to the younger sisters of her boyfriend, and I have no doubt that they were soon scattered around that tatty yard, all those satins and velvets, little feathered hats and tiny, intricate shoes, trampled and whisked away in the wind, but I can still close my eyes and be up that tree in the deep Summer heat, keeping watch for dastardly poachers and angry tribesmen.

The scent of old paper, the Johnson's wax we used on the hardwood floors (my Saturday polishings were carried out to rocking music, as I put on Daddy's old socks and danced the floors shiny), the flowers which were always present, the faint scent of my Mother's Pall Mall's, the aura of Chanel and Joy and Estee Lauder wafting from her dressing area, the delicious odors from the kitchen, where we would all be chopping and cooking and baking, the Summer tang of vinegar simmering in the latest batch of pickles, plus the Coppertone richness of a thousand days in the sun---those are still the scent-memories of my life, and my own home replicates these in its own way.

We have no idea of the complexities of our own homes' personae---the scents are just one of the points which go into their makeup; a friend used to come to our house often, and several times she said, "This smells like rich folks' houses." It was just a little house on a little street in a VERY little Southern town...but she was WAY right about the rich part. Books and music and really good food and friends to visit. Wealth beyond wishes.

And what three things does YOUR house smell of, right now?