“I don’t understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little - if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that’s the day she has a date with destiny. And it’s best to be as pretty as possible for destiny.” - Coco Chanel


a favorite pic of me and my crew in New Orleans.....this was 3 summers ago...our annual mini vacation before school started...=) Posted by Picasa


Comments Make The Heart Grow Fonder

I've been asked on a few occasions, why haven't you blogged recently? (The faithful readers now know I was on a roll yesterday..hehe.) Now, of course this was posed by those near and dear to me.
I received my first comment today from an "unknown" and oh did my little heart sing! Hence, the content of this blog is to urge you to comment should you like what you see. (And also I guess if you don't like what you see.=) The comment was high propane fuel to my blogging fire.
Anyone with initials SAG wanna start?


50 Things To Do Before I Die

No, that subject is in no way morbid. What is the thing you'd love to do, but it just seems as if it will never come to fruition? There are things that flit in and out of our minds and we just don't voice them or believe they are possible. It's usually some exotic isle or adventure that seems lightyears away. Take out a favorite journal or even a sheet of paper and write at the top "50 Things To Do Before I Die". This needs to be paper that you can quickly and easily locate. Numbers 1-10 will be easy. They will be things at the front of your mind. From there on, it gets harder to fill in the blanks. Therein lies the reason you need easy accessiblity to your list. When something triggers thoughts of deep desires, grab your list start jotting. My list is over 30 now, and I've successfully checked off some things I never thought I'd achieve! Sailing around the world on a sailboat seems completely out of my reach, but it's on my list. Walking on the Great Wall of China, visiting Australia, seeing the palaces of St. Petersburg, a cooking school in southern Italy, an apartment in NYC are all far beyond my reach, but never the less something to dream about. Nothing is too extreme nor simplistic. There is no rule that you have to share your list either. It may be too personal for public viewing, or you may be like me and enjoy others seeing your dreams. Whatever the case, just make the list. Those checks beside the things you were able to make happen make for a deep abiding joy and sense of well-being.

"Sugared" Tea, Please

A fond memory of my mother, is her allowing me to make the tea. We had a large, orange Tupperware pitcher and my self-esteem, love of cooking, and psyche were developed from this very act. How proud I was to measure the sugar into that pitcher, pour the liquid off the steeped bags that I'd been instructed to "just bring to a boil", and then stir until all grains of sugar were fully melted. Then and only then was I to add water up to the rim. At that point, in my elementary brain, I felt I had helped "cook supper".
I've just returned from a mini-pre-school-starting-vacation, and nary a place had "sweet" tea. Here in the deep South, we ask for "sweet" tea, which is of course improper. Sweetened tea is correct. I have a kindred spirit that always asks for "sugared" tea, and I love to borrow that line when far into Yankee country. My pronunciation is a long drawn out "shoog-ahed tea" worthy of Elizabeth in "Old Yellar". I love the reactions of the wait staff. Without fail, the response is "What?"with a quizzical look. And I again ask for "sugared" tea. In 90% of the cases, I draw a "dumb-southerner" sneer which makes my guts smile. Tea was made to be sweetened! I simply cannot mimick the taste of tea from the South when trying to sweeten it otherwise. I settle for a Diet Coke. But oh, to return home to the land of "sweet tea", such joy is indescribable.
My former mother-in-law introduced me to hot tea. I'll never forget learning to wrap the string from the tea bag around the bowl of the spoon just from watching her. A vivid memory of hot tea was on a return flight from Seoul, Korea. It was so soothing to my weary mind, body and spirit on that never ending flight. My aforementioned kindred spirit taught me to mix a 1/2 cranberry juice and 1/2 sweet tea for a delightful drink in the fall.
Until it is not available to me, as on my vacation, I simply do not realize just how much I love it. There is a large glass of the cold "sugared" stuff sitting close at hand as I type this. Ahhhh, I just had a sip. When will the rest of the world figure it out? Tea is to be "sweet".

The Baby, My Youngest Son

Since I found out I was pregnant with this child, I have said he was to be the General Superintendant of the United Pentecostal Church or the first Pentecostal President of the United States. His conception was not possible, yet it happened. And how deeply thankful I am that it did.
My oldest sat in the stroller without stress. Tyren Millspaugh Swanner demanded to PUSH the stroller, instead of ride in it, from a very early age. I dressed him for church, and within minutes he looked as if he'd had those very clothes on for days instead of minutes. His shirt never remained tucked in, his feet found a way to the mud puddle, and ketchup was forever adorning his pants. I simply could not keep this child clean nor make him look "freshly dressed". Yet he exuded joy. When Mother's Day was celebrated in Sunday School and the 5-6 year olds were asked "What makes your Mother smile", his reply was, "When I walk in the room". I find this to be true this very minute, even though he is now 15.
His brother got a guitar for Christmas 4 years ago. It sat untouched for some time. Tyren went to church camp and a friend there showed him a few things. I don't think many days have passed since that there wasn't a guitar in his hands. Am I allowed as a Mother to say he is amazing? Am I the only Mother who can hardly breathe when her children are performing? When all 3 perform at the same time, as happens in Youth Service periodically, I am overcome with gratefulness.
There is a calmness in him that I do not possess. He has patience that I have no chance of ever achieving, yet I helped to grow him to what he is. He is faithful to help me in the yard, haul things to the attic, and remove the garbage from the house, with little resistance. Oh, of course I hear the grumbles, etc, but he always helps. I have said on many occasions, that he will be the one to insure I don't get bedsores while in the nursing home. He has a nurturing spirit that I am so proud of. He wears his suits well and is health concious, which did not come from me. I recently told him how much like his Father he was. His face had this odd look and he questioned me whether or not I liked that. (His Father and I divorced years ago.) I told him all those things of his Father that I saw in him were the exact reasons I fell in love with and married his Dad.
He makes wonderful grades and excels in school. That he is now a sophmore makes my heart heavy. In 2 extremely short years, he will be a senior. My little disheveled boy is now a young man living in a grown body. If only I could keep him with me forever. Wait, he will be with me forever, in my mind, the little one with the shirt hanging half out stomping in the only mud puddle within a 1/2 mile range.