Archive for May, 2009

Sitting Pretty

May 30th, 2009 Comments off

img_0695On my trip to MO  I was offered the chance to drive this beautifully restored 1942 John Deere  B, but I only perched myself up on the wide seat and pretended to be driving.

Yeah, I chickened out when I felt the engine of that bad boy rumbling under me like a mighty beast. (I’m a 1942 model myself, but with less horsepower)

Actually, I declined because I knew that if I  wrecked this fine machine I’d  be hitch hiking my way back to the St. Louis airport.

It is a law of the land . . . you just don’t mess with a man’s tractor, even if he does have eight more.


Jacaranda Tree

May 29th, 2009 Comments off

This is the Jacaranda tree that graces my backyard.  Each year, during May and June, it puts on a glorious show of beauty.  It rises above my house top and can be seen from a distance. The blossoms fall like purple rain and the grass beneath it becomes blanketed in a lavish splash of color.  In a city where we live too close together, it is nice to have something to distinguish my little plot of ground, even if it is just for a couple of months out of the year.






      Purple rain

      Falling from Jacaranda trees

      Lilac, lovely lavendar,

       A showering of blossoms and beauty.



Love Triangle

May 26th, 2009 Comments off

As true today as it was 100 years ago.

When love is a game of three,

One heart can win but pain,

While two between them share the joy

That all had hoped to gain.

And one in its bitter sadness

Smiles on-lest the others see,

But two in their new-found gladness

Forget ’twas a game of three.

Author Unknown

All That’s Love=ly, 1909

Tea Party

May 22nd, 2009 Comments off

tea-partyMy niece Lori visited me with five year old Devon and seven year old Hannah. After a quick hello, the girls excitedly  announced that we were going to have a tea party.

They had come prepared.  Out of their pink backpacks came little pink cups, saucers, and a matching teapot.  Thanks to Lori, who filled the teapot and supplied the cookies, we were able to set a very pleasant table indeed.

As we began our party time, the expressly feminine little girls became the ultimate in good manners and poise.  They sat taller, folded their hands and were the epitome of charm and etiquette.  Emily Post would have been proud.

I couldn’t help but think of the days when my younger sister, Linda, and I were the generation playing the role of ladies at tea.  Sitting at our red enameled table with matching chairs, we daintily lifted our pretty little tea cups and thought we were something grand.   I  smile as I relive the moment, looking at the picture of four year old me sipping imaginary tea, and giggling at my cute little baby sister.

Casting a shadow on us was probably brother-in-law Bobby, who captured many pictures of our family.  Without his interest in photography, we would have had a much smaller photo album, and I may have forgotten how lovely it was to be a little lady at tea.


And here we are a few years ago at my retirement party.  The day was made immeasurably more wonderful because she was there to share it with me.  She is not only my baby sister, but she is my friend for life.

Kris Allen: American Idol

May 20th, 2009 Comments off

Kris Allen said, “Adam deserves this.”                                                                                        

Apparently the majority of almost 100 million people disagreed with him.

Congratulations Kris!  Accept the honor and enjoy!



Rock n Roll Hwy. 67

May 19th, 2009 Comments off

Thanks to Bill Carroll for this insightful and informative view of the naming of a 55 mile stretch of  highway in Arkansas.  (See previous entry in Arkansas category).   I totally agree that the area is not what is stereotypically ‘hillbilly’.    I also know that during this era, none of us used the term Rockabilly.  We thought of it only as Rock n Roll.   So, with that in mind, I congratulate the committee on choosing the name most reflective of the area and certainly hope I can participate in some of their activities.  Arkansas is a wonderful state , with beauty and hospitality to spare.    MT

Dear Schoolmarm,

On behalf of our local preservation and heritage tourism groups, I appreciate your efforts to publicize Rock and Roll Hwy 67. Your comments on the highway’s name–Rockabilly vs. Rock and Roll are appropriate, but there are several reasons we choose the latter versus the former name.

The term ‘rockabilly’ was a derogatory term coined many years after the bands we are honoring played on Hwy 67. The band leaders still active at this time were interviewed and insist they played ‘Rock and Roll’, not ‘Rockabilly’. They point out that they always had brass back-up–not a characteristic of what’s called ‘Rockabilly’.

Arkansas has suffered for decades from the ‘hillbilly’ image. The state has invested large sums to change that image. Research shows that most travelers have a negative opinion of the state before visiting here but are very positively impressed after visiting here–the natural scenery, the attractions, the parks, the history all get a very positive reaction from visitors.

As a native of this area, I’m sure you know that the hillbilly stereotype really doesn’t fit the reality one finds here.

I hope you can return to Pocahontas for our Oct. 2 and 3 Rock and Roll Hwy 67 Music Festival here. We’re featuring many of the early stars of the genre in concert as well as many other exhibits and features.

Bill Carroll

Pocahontas, Arkansas  Office of Tourism

Arkansas Connection-American Idol

May 17th, 2009 Comments off
An email from Faye about Kris Allen:
As I am sure you all know by now, Kris has made it to the top 2 on American Idol.  This is just awesome!!!!  We really need to support him this week with our votes.  So vote, vote, vote for 2 hour Tuesday night.  We need to make this happen for him. 
My grandson, Joshua Bettencourt, is best friends with Kris.  They were able to spend some time together when  Kris was in Arkansas for his homecoming trip.  Kris also got to meet and hold my great grandson, who is his youngest fan, for the first time.  
Kris asked Joshua to come to Hollywood for the finale.  So Joshua is flying out Monday to Hollywood and will stay until Thursday.  So look for him on T.V. Tuesday and Wednesday night. 
The Fox station in Fayetteville, AR interviewed him Thursday night and he was on their 9:00 pm news show.  They are also going to Hollywood and plan to meet up with Joshua out there and interview him there also. 
You can view Joshua’s interview that was on the Fayetteville station by googling KNWA.  When it pulls up the home page, click on Fox 24.  Then you will see a link that says “Headed for Hollywood”.  Click on that and watch his interview. 
This is just the neatest thing!!!!  We are all very excited.  Of course, we want him to win this week.  But if he comes in second, he is still a WINNER and will have a music career ahead for himself.  We are very proud of him.
My love to all of you,

Cockapoo Ralphie Waits . . .

May 16th, 2009 Comments off

waiting-for-tim Where’d she go? Ralphie is confused.  She is no where to be seen.

He checks the bedrooms a dozen times and everything in between

He waits by the window.  He waits by the door.

He listens for her to drive up, and then he listens some more.

The squirrels in the backyard don’t excite him, but he barks and chases them away.

And when the carrier drops the mail in the chute, he growls and howls and bays.

But his heart really isn’t in it, he just does what comes naturally.

After his search he falls asleep, and with puppy dreams naps  peacefully.

Soon she’ll be back with him, and everything will be  right as rain,

He’ll rush to meet her, and she’ll hug him and say, “It’s good to be home again.”


Stormy Weather

May 15th, 2009 Comments off

img_0981-copy-1Missouri has been hit with weeks of rain, and terrible wind storms have left devastation in a wide swathe.   As I drive the highways with my friend, we can see trees downed, broken and snapped in half, many uprooted completely.  Blue tarps cover damaged roofs.img_0677

The people are resilient and go about the business of cleaning up, while waiting for the insurance people.

The forecast called for more stormy weather the  first night of my visit. 


I was awakened in the night and told to go downstairs, which was safer.  A huge tree had been removed from the roof just a few days before.  Debris from  fallen trees littered the grounds of the otherwise well-kept,  beautiful countryside.

I stumbled down to the family room while  lightning streaked across the sky, dramatically illuminating the woods surrounding the  home.  Nature was putting on a spectacular show of  electrical power.  It is something we just don’t see in Los Angeles. 

I am amazed that I didn’t spend the night mesmerized by the incredible fireworks exhibition (with awesome surround sound!) Instead, I fell into a deep sleep on the sofa, and slept through the whole thing.  Traveler’s fatigue had won out over my natural curiosity and fear.

Thankfully this time no damage was done to my friend’s home.  That was a relief, but there is a long summer  ahead  with potentially much more of the same.  

 If that isn’t enough to keep a person prayed up, I don’t know what is!



May 14th, 2009 Comments off

The last year I taught school I was asked to design the yearbook cover.

I decided as my ‘last hurrah’ to draw caricatures of all the teachers and administrators.  Before submitting the surprise cover, I went to each person and asked for their approval and signature.  Everyone agreed, some were  even flattered.


Every artist knows to sign her work, but I forgot.  No where in the book was it mentioned that I drew the cover.  (So much for ego -driven last hurrahs. )

I was rewarded, however, when the staff dedicated the yearbook to me, recognizing my 23 years as their Resource Specialist Teacher.  It was a lovely surprise and I appreciated the nice gesture.

Hey, maybe I got my  last hurrah, after all!


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