Saturday, March 28, 2015

A Penny for Your Cornbread!

How many of you say this little rhyme before picking up a penny.....See a penny, pick it up...all day long you'll have good luck? 

I'd said it thousands of times until one day feeling completely overwhelmed and convinced that MY world was about to crumble like an overcooked piece of cornbread, I decided to wash my car. A mindless activity as long as you have the right music thumping from the speakers and the perfect temperature outside.... allowing those cornbread crumbs to temporarily disappear!

With the assistance of Motown and a little elbow grease, the car was spotless (Dad taught me well). With Armourall in one hand and a faded red shop rag in the other, I decided to tackle the interior too.

Compliments of Al Green, Jackson Five and a little CCR,  I was one drink cup holder away from being finished. All the loose change I'd conveniently dropped into this perfect space was now …....nasty! I scooped out all the coins and placed them in the bucket of car wash suds to let them hopefully clean themselves.

I fished out all the coins, mostly pennies and started rinsing them off. I kept seeing the same words over and over again......In God We Trust.......whether a new shiny penny or laced with sticky Diet Coke drippings.....they all had the same message.....In God We Trust!
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.

How many pennies have I picked up, handed over, tossed into a fountain and ignored this message? On a penny for crying out loud and here I sit, trying to escape my crumbling life with an entire cup full of reminders.

This had nothing to do with luck, this had everything to do with God doing whatever was necessary to get my attention. I knew where I was falling short. Prayer! I believe in God and years ago put my trust in Him, but I'd allowed life's circumstances to take over and I found myself using every excuse imaginable to avoid prayer or quiet time.

Sitting right there on the concrete, eyes closed, sun shining bright and wearing my most unattractive car washing get-up, I had a long conversation with my Lord and wrapped it up with my own penny rhyme.......In God I trust....Faith, I must!

Skipping forward, I've never intentionally walked over a penny. I pick it up and remind myself that I have a God that I can go to and I must have faith in Him at all times, in every situation. Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.

Why not take it one step further and pass that penny along? Pick up the penny and pray for someone. Someone at church, in line at the grocery store, the cashier at the grocery store, a co-worker, family member, spouse......there really are no limits on who we can pray for, or how often!

It doesn't have to be a long prayer. It can be as simple as “God, I lift this person up to you in prayer and ask that you will bless their lives in a mighty way. Be with them and I pray they will seek you in all they do. Amen. “

Following your prayer, give them the penny and share with them...“Today I found this penny and I prayed for you. As you can see, there is already a reminder there for us.....In God We Trust. Have faith, I must!”

You might be wondering about my cornbread! Well, I learned to use ALL the key ingredients and sometimes that includes the cast iron skillet that needs to bonk upside my head to get my attention! Life is good and so is the cornbread!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

A Gallery of Art and One Proud Mama!

Allow me to introduce you to my son.....Andrew Fox!  Andrew with the head of curls that women pay high dollar to have.....Andrew with the facial hair that surpasses most No-Shave November attempts....Andrew with the great sense of humor and ability to debate just about anything.....and Andrew the Artist!

The last semester of school as a Sophomore, Andrew took drawing as an elective. I loved art in school and even as a little whipper-snapper drawing dinosaurs, Clone Troopers or just doodling... I knew Andrew was going to be very good.  

I've been anxiously waiting to see his portfolio and today I finally did.  It's been in his room since the end of school and I could have taken a peak, but I wanted him to show me and be proud of his accomplishments.

Let the Art Show begin........commentary by the man himself!
We had to take an object from the class and incorporate fabric into the drawing. This is some sort of Buddha thing with fabric around the bottom.
Once again, we had to draw objects in the class. This is a chess piece. (Hands are hard to draw - I think he did great!)
Here, we had to photograph items and then draw them from the photo.  It is some kind of origami paper.
This is an eraser drawing.  I used the eraser to get the lighter values.

Again, these had to be drawn from photographs.  It's different images of a copper pot.(I thought they were photographs!)
Gosh, it's hard to choose a favorite, but these last two are right up there and I've asked him if I can frame the copper pots to go in my kitchen.  I just love them.

We also had to do a self-portrait and I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out.  He drew himself from a photograph and then added the rest.
WOW!  I'm going to frame this one for his room.  

Andrew - Please don't let this talent go to waste!  Use it....use it....use it! 

I'm so proud of this young man and can't wait to see what's next! 

Love you Bud!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Is there any chrome left on that bumper?

Father's Day is approaching and I've purchased my card!  I also tried to think of a good way to remember Dad without being all mushy mushy (although just typing this will for sure bring on those kind of tears that you don't know whether you are happy or just cry.

If you knew Dad, you know he loved his vehicles.  A lot of his old stories even revolved around his love for cars and trucks.  

When I was looking for an old picture of the Red Fifty Six, Mom found a plastic pocket photo album that Dad had started and of course he'd titled it...of course you guessed it....
The contents of this booklet don't by any means capture all of his vehicles, but there are a few.  I may not be able to remember exact stories about each one, but I'll give it a shot....
I'm not certain, but this may be the car that Dad got caught drag racing.  He left home, met somewhere to race and didn't know (of course) that Pap left home shortly after just to see what the boys were up to.  As Dad pulled back in the drive-way, Pap pulled in behind him.....walked up to the car with the dreaded hand out...........the keys!
I know absolutely nothing about this vehicle.  I remember the black car next to it only because it was in more photographs.  The house it is parked in front of is where we moved to when Kathy was maybe around 1968-69ish. I love the headlights and grill.
This one looks familiar!  This is the Red Fifty Six that I drove a many miles. Another item on my bucket list......take Roy Richardson up on his offer and go photograph the truck (since he won't sell it to me). Dual exhaust, mirror shine all the time and probably a bat bag or lawn chair in the back. Ahhhh....loved that truck!
Dad bought this truck after they moved to Fenton Mill Road.  I don't quite remember the year, but thinking '49 maybe.  He also had a black '49 before this one and traded it to a guy named Jerry for a fireplace in our old house. What a trade!
Robbie was Dad's shadow and loved to ride in the trucks, working and making 'stuff' in the shop and just being boys!

A few more 'Oldies but Goodies'...and I mean the trucks!  However, you might recognize a those love-birds too.

I don't know why, but the darker blue/green truck was probably my favorite of the newer models he had.  Maybe because he had it for such a long time.  He had this truck with Bailey & Andrew were born and I always wanted to drive it! He'd wash it and then park it where it would get the most shine.

These were the last two red trucks he owned.  The license plate....IOK-RU2 moved from truck to truck.  AND....hold on to your hats because as you can see....these trucks are NOT Fords!  We all thought it would snow in July for sure when he bought something other than a Ford!  I did have the privilege to drive the Dodge.  My car was in the shop and Dad offered me the keys.  Of course, I got the look and then the talk.....Treat it like I would! (Just call me Nervous Nellie for those few days). But, I so enjoyed the roar of the mufflers and the looks on all the teenage boy's faces when they'd pull up next to me at a stop light, driving their own trucks.  I'm sure they were thinking how good the truck sounded, yada yada....Aw man, it's a woman driving....It's somebody's Mom!  That's right Eddie Haskell and I just left you behind trying to figure out what just happened!

There is one picture missing and it's the yellow Ford Fairlane convertible. Another car I had the privilege of driving while in high school.  I remember parking it at Murphy's Mart while Dana and I ran in. When we came out, it was nose to nose with a truck.  The guy was cool because there was no damage.  No damage!!! There was a scuff mark on the front bumper and I'm doomed!!!  
We went back to Dana's house and I swear I used a whole can of wax trying to buff off that scuff mark. I knew what I had to away!  Just kidding. I knew I had to tell the truth.  I drove the ride of shame home and slowly walked up the sidewalk.  Only Mom was in the house, so I told her. Daggone, she agreed that I needed to tell him. Ugh! Why can't YOU tell him?  He's outside pulling weeds, go on out there and tell him. Can I go live with Nannie & Pap?
I took a deep breath....Dad, Dana and I went to Murphy's Mart and I parked the car and I know I put it in park but when we came out the car had moved I don't know how it moved, but it just did The guy was pretty cool because there was no damage to his truck and he said more than likely it jumped out of gear because older cars do that sometimes but I just wanted to tell you the truth even after trying to buff is out a-l-l-d-a-y long........SILENCE......he never broke rhythm pulling weeds and said in a very calm voice...but it was THE voice....there's no way that car jumped out of gear!  I wanted to scream. Do you know how long it took me to get up the courage to tell the truth and my arms hurt from buffing so much.  I'm surprised there's any chrome left on the bumper! And, now you don't believe me?  I don't remember him saying much more about that car........until I backed it into a tree leaving a friend's house.  THAT caused a little more damage than a scuff.  Ummmm...sorry!

Dad......(OK, I said no mush...tough!) I feel like the luckiest girl on the planet because of the opportunities you made happen for me.  I love you and miss you terribly each and every day.  I'm not perfect and I may not be able to brag about being able to wear the same clothes I did in high school...but when someone says to me.....You are just like your Daddy!.....I smile with joy and say....I hope so!  I sure hope so!

Happy Father's Day! And a special hug to all that have heavy hearts this Sunday....Love you all!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Life would be better if we wore more tutus....

If you had told me this morning that by the end of the day, there would be a video of me on Facebook in the shower.  I would've laughed you out the door!
Melinda...I guess you are right!  Welcome to the age where you really don't care what people think!  I received the challenge from Ashley and it's for a good cause, so there you go!

To back up just a little......Nannie Bailey called me at 5:30 am to wish me a Happy Birthday and asked the same question she does every year.....Do you feel any older?  Love her to pieces.

After the boys were off to school/work ....I hit the highway, cranked the Motown on XM Radio and headed to Chesterfield to meet Cindy (aka-Melvina). We met in the parking lot, sharing a few favorite dance moves...step-shuffle, step-shuffle and of course....step-ball change!  People watched.....we did not care!

The day consisted of beautifying, lunch and what else.....a visit to The Lazy Daisy and thrifting.  My bargain of the day.......22 pieces of beautiful silver-plated silverware and 3 pieces of silver....yes ma'am, I said silver!  All for the bargain price of $3.60.  Cha-Ching!  As I was digging, and I mean making lots of noise (like Andrew when he used to dig for hours in his Lego bin) there was a man lingering and I'm sure waiting his turn.  With nothing left in the bin but stainless steel, I smiled and in my mind wanted to do a cartwheel!  Whoa-Sistah....don't even think about it! Just walk away with your loot and be satisfied with that!
Goodwill also had for the bargain price of $6.99 an adult-size tutu!  Hmmmmmm....

I arrived home to find the guys already home....I video taped myself in the shower (d'lawd!) and we left with 3 items on our list.
  1. Dinner
  2. Sweet Frog
  3. Sparklers
It really didn't matter to me where we had dinner, as long as we went to Sweet Frog after.  What a treat!  I opted for B-Dubs because it was within walking distance. I wish the sparklers were that easy.  I wanted a photo for my 50th holding sparklers.  Call me weird - I'm OK with it.  I bet I buy some and save them for 51!

Who's meeting me at the batting cage?
Thanks everyone for allowing me to share some of my bucket list with you!  I have the most amazing family and friends.  My bucket is running over with such beautiful memories....backyard dance performances, the old wooden bridge, dancing with Dad to CCR, sewing and life advice from Mom, growing up and still laughing ourselves to tears, a wonderful job that inspires me and touches my heart to the point of tears and a wonderful husband, children and grand babies!  50 years of goodness....just plain and simple goodness!  Who needs a list?

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Want a kiss?

Fab 50-Bucket List......Marry my best friend! Check!

It all started over gravy!  Henry doesn't like gravy.  How can anyone living in Virginia not like gravy?  At one of the Wednesday night dinners, I decided to give Henry a few custom packets of gravy.....Henry's Special Gravy (I just printed large labels and covered the real name).  But I wanted to give him something other than a funny gift, so I called Stephen to ask where his parents like to eat out..............the rest is history!

That sparked more conversations and on one of the Wednesday night dinners to follow (I think we'd probably been out on 2 dates) Stephen walked over to the table with a handful of chocolate kisses and just as I put a bite of food in my mouth said, "Want a kiss?".  I couldn't answer, but Dad did....."Why don't I get a kiss?"

The Emotions sing one of my favorite songs.  I do love me some Motown, so it's hard to pick just one favorite song.  But, this captures me and how I feel towards my best friend....Kevin!  (HaHa - that's another story.....I thought Stephen's name was Kevin for a long time and had to tell him the story just in case I called him Kevin-Silly girl)

Love you Babe! CYK!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Fab-50 Homegrown Yoga!

The next item on my Fab-50 Bucket List is already in motion......slloooowww yoga motion that is.

I was on the hunt for a yoga class that would not only work with my work and church schedule, but affordable too.  I thought I'd hit a brick wall when through the amazement of social media, came a post on my Facebook page.

Homegrown Yoga in Barhamsville!  Evening hours....even on weekends.....and it's by donation.  You pay what you can afford and if one week your payment is your energy....that's OK.  I couldn't buy a yoga mat quick enough!!!

Just the ride alone prepares me for this perfect hour.

So inviting!

Each class (I'm not sure what they are called...class? session?) April Wooten always greets me with a smile, offers the best cold water infused with blueberries, kiwi, strawberries, etc.  I'm also greeted by another new friend...Kiera.  
I'd take her home in a minute!

Yoga has proven to be exactly what the doctor ordered.  Because of my knee, I've been told no more Zumba. It was never pretty, but I could still hip-hop and groove with the best of them. Did you know there are a lot of skinny girls that don't have rhythm?  Sorry, just speakin' the truth! That's actually a bummer because I did love those classes.  However, I needed to do something and hoping I still had some flexibility left in I went.

We really were doing yoga here and not auditioning as back up dancers for DWTS!  
Sore?  Yep...only after the first day though.  And I learned that even the easiest of poses can make one feel like the clumsiest of a woman.  Just like this picture above.  I swore I was in a full lunge and ready for competition -ha!  The one thing I have learned from viewing these pictures....I'm slackin'. Now that I'm more comfortable with the poses, it's time to push a little more.

Afterwards, we decided to have a little fun....

Let me be the first to encourage you to attend April Wooten's Homegrown Yoga in Barhamsville (look for Homegrown Yoga in Barhamsville as her FB page) No pressure (except when she walks around and challenges your flexibility with good pressure) and if you can't do the downward dog or the pigeon...that's ok.  Now April when I'm in this pose, I don't look anything like a pigeon...but I'll take your word for it.  What's the hardest? Challenging your core muscles and of course balance. However, this is a challenge that isn't impossible and I feel absolutely wonderful when I leave.  The last few minutes, I have quiet time...just me and God.  I honestly don't think about any of the smog in my life...deadlines... I just reflect on the many blessings God has provided and then I have the wonderful greeting of a cool wet washcloth soaked in lavender - placed on my forehead.  Now THIS is the life. Thanks April!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Grammie Git 'ur Gun!

I've always been a fan of the Beverly Hillbillies but I don't necessarily think I compare to Granny....or Ellie May for that matter.  Not even Miss Hathaway - now that's funny!  

...Then one day he was shootin' at some food, and up from the ground came a bubblin' crude.  Oil that gold...Texas tea!

Honey, I've got it!  The next item on my Fab-50 Bucket List is going to make us rich!

....The next thing you know the ol' Ward's are millionaires and the kin-folk said...Y'all move away from there!  They said, Californy is the place you oughta be...but they said No thanks...and they fixed a glass a tea!  Sweet holes.....Lanexa stars!

I want to visit a firing/shooting range!  I don't even know where one is or what you have to do to set it up.  But, I'm gonna do it!

Grammie - git 'ur gun!

Isn't it funny how we remember all the words to those childhood songs like...the Ballad of Jed Clampett....Fred Flintstone....Yabadabadooo!, Scooby Do, and Lawrence Welk's Goodnight song....

Now before you start singing, you have to stand up and start swaying, just like Bobby and Sissy....Goodnight, Sleep tight and pleasant dreams to you. Here's a wish and prayer that all your dreams come true.  And now til we meet again.....Adios, Au Revior, Auf Weidersehen....Good night! (Cindy...that's for you!)

I just had a visual and a strange thought.  I wonder what Lawrence Welk would've done if ol' Granny walked onto his stage, boots clompin?!  Made me laugh.....Good night!

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