The Golden Anniversary!

On this very day 50 years ago, my parents got married. The ceremony was performed in my grandparent’s living room and attended by close family and a few friends. After cake and punch, the newlyweds left to honeymoon in New Orleans. It was a small and happy wedding and the perfect start to their lives…

All the rage in Natchez

Did you ever wonder how an idiom comes into being? I’m fixing to tell you. I’ve always said that the fashionable, popular thing was “all the rage in Natchez.” I said it because Mama always said it. And Granny always said it. And I never gave much thought to why Natchez. With all due respect…

The pearl handle pocket knife

The pearl handle pocket knife. Once Christmas long ago Granny gave Baw a pearl handle pocket knife. A gentleman’s knife, it was a fine little thing, a knife you could take to church. No, it’s wasn’t any ordinary everyday knife to scrape the dirt from under one’s nails or sharpen a pencil. It was fancy,…

Defiantly straight

16 hours. That’s how long I was in my mother’s home for a Thanksgiving visit before I found myself with not one but two different kinds of product in my hair. My limp, straight, ornery hair has been a source of consternation to my mother my whole life, and one day, by God, she will…

Murdering killers who might also be witches

When you live out in the country, isolated from neighbors, you take extra measures to keep your family and property safe.  My grandfather (“Baw” to me) was very vigilant. There was a gun behind every door, he had a pistol, and we had dogs that alerted us to any newcomer.  As an added layer of…

I love to tell the story

Storytelling runs in my family. We sit around and tell the same tales over and over and over. Somehow they never get old. Extra emphasis, a rolled eye, a dramatic pause entertains. A little extra detail here and there educates. In the retelling, heritage and history are passed down. My grandfather, “Baw,” and his brothers…

As cold as floogie

It is as cold as floogie. At least that’s how Mama describes the weather we’ve had this winter — as cold as floogie. She’s used this description for as long as I can remember, although the word “floogie” doesn’t seem to have any real meaning. It’s sort of onomatopoetic in a way. “Ooooo it’s so…

When life gives you phlegm, make phlegmonade!

The cold and flu season is upon us — at least it’s upon me in all it’s snotty, wheezing, hacking glory. As I snuffle about trying to think of something, anything to make me feel better, I can’t help but remember some of the home remedies Mama and Granny inflicted on me as a child….

Creamed things on toast

With Thanksgiving looming before us, it’s time we had a little cooking lesson. I am going to share with you the the first thing Mama taught me to cook. With this recipe she gave me the key to making most anything reasonably palatable, using up leftovers, and making the perfect gravy. Just this one basic…

Putting my face on

I need to put my face on. That’s what Granny called putting on her makeup — putting her face on. When I was little and we lived with Granny and Baw, I would lie on her bed and watch her while she stood in front of her bedroom window and put on her face. Now…