Early July Morning, Cocoa Beach, Florida

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


I love coming to Florida and visiting with my family and old friends. The other day, I had the opportunity to visit with someone I had not seen in about 27 years (give or take). Really? That sounds so long ago, but when I think back, it does not seem like that long ago.
My friend and I use to hang out at the beach a lot. When I think back on my growing up years, I will have to admit...I was very fortunate. Fortunate to live in a time when things were easier. Fortunate to live during a time of great excitement, and a place where wonderful things were happening. Growing up in Central Florida in the 60's and 70's, I really did not give it much thought, but thinking back, it was a great time and a great place.

We moved to Florida in 1967. The space program brought our family to the Sunshine State from Huntsville, Alabama. My dad was a NASA Engineer and worked on the Apollo program. I can remember many launches. We would watch it on TV and when countdown was at about 10, 9, 8,....it was time to go out in our yard and look up in the air. Pretty soon, we could see a bright light moving through the skies. Then poof! Stage one, POOF, stage two. Then the rumbling sound shook the earth. 

In 1969 when Apollo 11 headed for the moon to land the first man that would walk on its surface, I was there. Yes, I saw the actually lift off. It was a very warm, bright, sunny July day; and boy did I ever get sunburned! 
Going to the beach as a teen was a very fun thing. To this day, it is one of my favorite places to be. I love everything about it...the sun, the warmth, the sound of the waves and the birds, even the sand between my toes. Since I left for college, I have not been back for any length of time, and it saddens me. My husband and I have tried to move back, but I guess we will just have to wait until we retire, then head down like everyone else; but I will be coming back home.

Having lunch with my friend brought back a lot of fun memories. Twenty-seven years seems like a long time when you say the number, but to my friend and I, it really was not that long. You see, we just picked right back up where we had left off so many years ago. Here is hoping it won't be another 27 years before we meet up again...

Friday, August 22, 2014


I sure miss my washer and dryer. It is at home taking a rest for awhile while we await the sell of our house. I decided to spend some time with my husband in Louisiana, while friends and neighbors (and realtor) look after the house.

Doing laundry has been one of the worst hassles. We were doing it at the laundry mat, but since my son and his wife have access to a washer and dryer at their apartment, I come over during the day while everyone is at work and use them. I miss being able to do a load here and a load there. Nowadays, I wait and wind up doing six or more loads at a time. It takes ALL. DAY. LONG!!!!!

Some Awesomely Good Southern Cooking

I can't wait to try some of these recipes! Down South by Donald Link is full of yummy Southern recipes and lots of fun stories from growing up and living in the South. As a Southern girl myself, I can relate to a lot of the food and experiences he shares.

I love a cookbook with pictures, and Down South has a lot of nice photos of the food and places he talks about. Most of the recipes and stories come from the Gulf States, but Kentucky, Tennessee, the Carolinas, etc. are also represented.

Down South: Bourbon, Pork, Gulf Shrimp and Second Helpings of Everything by Donald Link and Paula Disbrowe, is a great cookbook for anyone who loves Southern food, or who wants to learn more about it.

 I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

First Time Smartphone

So, yesterday marked the end of an era, yes I caved in. I got a smartphone, yep, one of the last to do so. My daughter actually will be getting her new smartphone in a few days. She has also been fighting the smartphone craze.

Do you know how hard it is to buy what I call a "dumb phone?" Almost impossible. All my boys have a smartphone, and my husband has one for his job. Everyone has been telling me I need to get one, that I would "Love it!" Well, I am sure they are right, the point is, I don't want to be dependent on one...I have done just fine going many years without one.

I have found people automatically assume you have a smartphone, and send mass text messages or pictures asking my opinion on things. Heck, even teaching Seminary, they expect you to have all this technology at the tip of your hands...no more printed books, everything right on your smartphone or pad. What do you think would happened if there was no electricity for weeks? People would go CRAZY.

I'm not saying I don't like it....far from that. It's just I feel that our society has gotten way too dependent on it. No one can function, heck, people can't even carry on a conversation anymore.

I do like my new smartphone, but I do plan to not get too dependent on it.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad!

Fifty-eight years ago today, my parents were married. Here they are, probably their first Christmas. Boy they were young!
I was the first of three girls, and I am so happy that I was blessed to be a part of this family. For the most part, we were all very happy and had the things we needed. My parents did a great job with raising us girls.
Boy, I'm glad most 1970's styles are gone...how funny is this!?
Anyway, happy anniversary, Mom and Dad!!!


Friday, August 8, 2014

The Natural Pregnancy Book

I was so excited to get this book because I am going to be a GRANDMA!!! Yes, my daughter is going to have our first grandchild in December. As a yoga and dance instructor and vegan, our daughter is very health conscious. Since she is vegan, she has had some questions on whether or not she needs to continue this through her pregnancy. I think this book, along with her doctor's advice will be just what she needs to make some good healthy decisions.

The Natural Pregnancy Book, (third edition), Your Complete Guide to a Safe, Organic Pregnancy and Childbirth with Herbs, Nutrition, and Other Holistic Choices by Aviva Jill Romm is full of good advice from nutrition to choosing what type of health care is best for you. Jill starts out with The Basics, then helps you to learn how to be more aware of your body. She also discusses prenatal care, what to eat, and common concerns. This book is full of information that any pregnant woman would need. As a first time grandma, I find it interesting, and hope I can support my daughter in her pregnancy decisions. After I get done with it, this book is headed to my daughter's house.

The Natural Pregnancy Book went on sale August 5, 2014 and retails for $17.99.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Spicy Vegan!

Afro-Vegan Farm-Fresh African, Caribbean & Southern Flavors Remixed
By Bryant Terry

This book came in the mail, and when I first opened the package my first thought was, "What a beautiful book!" As I flipped though the pages, I noticed that the vegan recipes Mr. Terry shares look amazingly delicious. He likes to use lots of spices and other seasonings, which are right up my alley!
Bryant thinks that "people of African decent should honor, cultivate and consume food from the African Diaspora." He also mentions how many people of African decent have strayed away from their traditional foods and have adopted a Western diet, leading to many health problems such as diabetes, hypertension, etc, all of which are preventable by eating healthier. This cookbook would be a wonderful addition for anyone trying to eat healthier.
I can't wait to try some of his recipes such as Grilled Corn on the Cob and Smashed Potatoes, Peas and Corn with Chile-Garlic Oil. Doesn't that sound yummy?! Mr. Terry not only shares many exciting recipes, but he also talks a little about the different cultures that inspired many of these dishes, which makes this book not just a good cookbook, but a good read.