Monday, May 31, 2010

My Sweetgrass Baskets and Happy Memorial Day

I hope you've been enjoying this weekend surge of posts. Alas, I go back to work bright and early in the morning. A bright thought two weeks we'll begin our four day workweeks through the summer. Since I'm already going in at 7 AM and staying late, it won't be a change for me EXCEPT that I'll have Fridays off. I am doing SUCH a happy happy dance in my head right now.

I've been playing around with my new camera and took pictures of my sweetgrass basket collection. Some are displayed and others are truly used...hence the photos of the messy key basket and even messier make-up basket. (EDIT-Just realized that a photo of Lorelai holding a pair of shoes that she wants me to buy for her slipped in to the slide show...just ignore that unless, of course, YOU would like to purchase that nifty pair of Kate Spade wedges for her!!)

The making of these baskets is a true which has been passed down from generation to generation for hundreds of years. It's a dying art, not to mention that basketmakers are having a harder and harder time finding sweetgrass, which is why I try to buy one whenever I can. Maybe I'll give one away sometime. That would be a NEAT giveaway.

Happy Memorial Day...hope you're enjoying some start of the summer fun!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Ahhhhh....Chapter II AND a Recipe

We are having a wonderful time entertaining Legare's buddies from Chapel Hill. I prepared a delightful brunch this morning (if I do say so myself) and they've just headed downtown for a Spoleto Festival chamber music concert at the newly renovated Dock Street Theater.
If you've not been to Spoleto, you're missing a treat. We are so and crowded...but blessed.

I'm going on a hunt this afternoon for a dress for our neighbor's wedding. I'll drop Lorelai off to meet the boys and she'll spend the rest of the afternoon with them. I like them a lot...they are SMART boys (well young men, I suppose).

We treated our guests to dinner last night at McCrady's. (I know, I'm giving you too many links but they're all worth a look.) Every now and then it occurs to me that we sometimes take a lot of what we have here in the Lowcountry for pays to refresh one's memory occasionally.

I could NOT wait to share this recipe with you. Carolina Peach Sangria, also found in the June edition of Southern Living Magazine. We had it with our brunch this morning and there is JUST enough left for Hank and me to have one more glass late this afternoon. You need to make it a day ahead for the flavors to meld. This recipe is a keeper here in the Land of Belle.

What is my problem? Oh yeah....I'm a MOM!

So...I'm sitting here at 12:25 AM waiting for Legare and his friends to get home. What IS my problem? They are 24 year old men, for pete's sake!! Ever since he left home to go to college in 2004, I've never lost a minute's long as he isn't home, that is. When he's here I fall right back into the old habit of waiting up. I'm getting kind of sleepy...

Good grief!

I'm going to bed now...


Saturday, May 29, 2010


Ahhh...that is me releasing a heavy sigh because for the first time in WEEKS, I have a day with absolutely nothing to do but what I WANT to do. The wedding season and graduation season and "oh my gosh I have to open a new school in two months season" and (get this!) "REALLY doctor's office? I've been walking around with STREP throat but you don't call me for a WEEK after I came to your office and you told me there was nothing wrong with me but now you say the test came back positive and I need an antibiotic" season. (Good thing I didn't believe you and only waited FIVE days to drag myself to a different doctor.) Anyhow, HAPPY DAY!!

I bought myself this for Mother's Day but haven't had time to figure it out until this morning. I played around with it last night and took a couple of photos outside. Even without reading the camera guide, I can already tell you that I've never had a camera that took such good photos in the dead of night. (Seriously, it was almost 11PM by the time we finished supper and went outside for a little splash of dessert wine. There is one obvious problem, though....the reflection from the solar landscape lights put off an odd "ribbon" of across the face of the guy on the left and a lighter one to the left behind Legare. Anybody know what to do about that??

Legare is home and brought two friends who wanted to visit Charleston. One of the young men is from NC, so he's been here before. The other, a rising 3L like Legare, is from KANSAS!! YES...Kansas is REAL!!! He was here when he was three years old for his uncle's medical school graduation....oddly, he doesn't remember much about it.

They left bright and early this morning for breakfast at Henry's before heading downtown. We had a supper last night here at home. Artichoke dip, crabcakes, rosemary roasted potatoes, green beans, homemade cheese biscuits (BILL...tell Martha Lynn they were fabulous!!) and my famous caramel pecan pie.

Lorelai and her friend Julia are off for a girls' day of shopping and a movie. Hank got up this morning to take Ned to the farm for a little bit and I AM NOW GLORIOUSLY ALONE to drink another pot of coffee and blog and read and probably take a nap. Ain't life grand???
What are you up to today?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Not such a Rowdy Girl...

We'd planned a Rowdy Girls weekend at the summer house last weekend and just didn't want to cancel even though I still had a pretty good case of the crud. Louis and Sue arrived with their new boat in tow and Meg and Will got there shortly thereafter....just in time for the sunset.

You know your friends love you when they let you "be" when you're supposed to be entertaining. When I went to bed Friday night I told them where all of the brunch food was and crawled away....wasn't so sure that I wouldn't have to come home on Saturday morning and just leave them there. It was awful...darn that doctor who wouldn't give me a Zpack.

Saturday morning around 11:00, Hank checked to make sure I was still alive. About 1:30 in the afternoon he checked again and told me they were leaving in the boat for Edisto. I got up about 4:00. They got back around 5:00 and bless Hank and Meg...they took over the cooking duties for the second time that day. I stayed up until about 10:00 pm then left them all alone again.

I was useless and so disappointed that I didn't get to be ONE BIT ROWDY!! Better yet, I got downright mad...

Rest assured that I was sitting in front of the doctor's office when they opened at 8:00 AM on Monday morning. Finally, I convinced somebody to give me the antibiotic I'd needed for the better part of a week.

Feeling much better now, thanks so much.

But I'm still mad. Know what though...I still looked better than this gal. I think her rowdy days are finally over...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Happy Birthday Dear Legare...

I ran this post last year in May of 2009. Indulge me in a repeat, if you will.

Legare is 24 years old today.

Happy Birthday!!!

Legare is going to be 23 years old tomorrow. Good grief...23! I am the mother of a 23year old MAN! I'll post a few pictures but also thought I'd share the story of his birth. Legare was almost two weeks overdue. I called the doctor about 9:00 AM on Sunday morning, May 25, 1986, and he told us to meet him at the hospital. After an exam they determined that I MIGHT be in labor and that we should go walk around somewhere for a couple of hours and come back. By that time our best friend Scott had arrived. He was in his third year of med school and didn't want to miss anything. We went to the mall and walked around...everybody but me ate lunch, then we went back to the hospital about 2:30 PM. The labor hadn't progressed very much but since we were there, and they were going to induce on Tuesday anyway, the doctor decided that we might as well stay.

They hooked me up to an IV and the FUN started! After awhile they broke my water and there was lots MORE fun. Poor Hank...we didn't pay ANY attention in Lamaze class because we were so busy laughing at all of the other people. He'd try to tell me to breathe and I'd get mad. The nurse would say breathe and I would breathe. Scott left for a couple of hours to go to church. Every now and then Hank would say, Scott will be back in a little won't mind if he stays with you...he'll be right'll be OK with Scott while I go check on Mom and Dad. I know Scott is coming'll be OK, won't you?" Hank told me later that his hand and arm were sore for the longest time. Who knew I could be so strong.

Scott got back and Hank took a much needed break. The doctor came in and I grabbed him by his necktie and demanded drugs. An epidural was there el pronto and everybody calmed down. Hours went by and finally it was least everybody thought it was time EXCEPT Legare. He was apparently very comfortable and didn't see a reason to hurry. Scott was hanging right in there with us all night long but all of a sudden things got a little bit scary. Legare would slide down during the contractions and slide right back up when the contraction was over. About 2:45 AM on Monday morning, the 26th, we prepared to wheel down to the OR for an emergency c-section. I was tired and had gotten the shakes. Hank held one hand and one of the anesthesiologists held the other. At 3:27 AM, along came Legare...all 8 pounds and 6 ounces of him.

There was no crying...the baby was in a little bit of distress and they ran away with him before I could even get a look. His first Apgar score was a "2"... a few minutes later it was up to a "9" but not wanting to take any chances they took him away. I was fine, so Hank went with the baby.

I arrived in my room around 5:30 AM. Hank went home to shower and I fell asleep. At 7:00 AM, the phone in my room rang. I remember thinking...who the heck is calling me...what is WRONG with them...but I put on my brightest and best southern belle voice and had a conversation with Hank's cousin like I'd just awakened from a restful night's sleep (as opposed to having just been through HOURS of excruciating pain, emergency surgery to have a baby, and less than two hours sleep!!)

Mother arrived about 7:30 AM and immediately went to the nursery to find out when I would get to hold my sweet baby. About 8:00 AM, they finally brought him in. It was a moment of pure JOY! We got lots of flowers and had lots of company and I entertained in grand style. Actually, Hank says that I just THINK I entertained in grand style that first day. I apparently fell asleep mid-sentence with most of my visitors.

We came home four days later and as we drove away from the hospital, I recall thinking...what is wrong with the people at this could they let us LEAVE with a baby. We don't know what we're doing. WHAT WERE THEY THINKING!!

Mother and Ned stayed with us for three weeks. She slept in the nursery with Legare and only woke me during the night when he needed to be fed, thus I was able to get my strength back quickly and Hank didn't get exhausted taking care of the both of us. What a blessing.

Legare has continued to be pure joy....most of the time. Like any other kid, he had his MOMENTS! I surely can't tell you about all of them but let's see...there was the time, one February, when Lorelai was about four, that Legare told her that it was her birthday. She was SO excited. Only problem....her birthday is in July. It wasn't fun.

Did I ever tell you about the time we discovered (at the END of the day) that he'd enjoyed a BEER at 8:00 AM (before he went to school) a mere two weeks before graduation? Thank The LORD that he didn't get caught. Why would he do such a thing, you might ask? He was hot and thirsty! Well...there you go...

Legare is going to do great things in this world.

On the night you were born,
the moon smiled with such wonder
that the stars peeked in to see you
and the night wind whispered.
“Life will never be the same.”

Because there had never been anyone like you . . . ever in the world.

(excerpt from "On the Night You Were Born" by Nancy Tillman)

Son...Daddy and I love you more than you can imagine, my sweet sweet baby boy. Lorelai loves you more than you know too...she just isn't going to tell you that. There might be kids loved AS MUCH as you and your sister in this world but I guarantee that there are not any loved MORE. HAPPY BIRTHDAY...we'll see you later this week.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Yep...I'm a big talker...(or not)

1. Last weekend I got to feeling pretty good about myself what with a couple of posts over the weekend. Yesterday I had to resort to a repeat of an old "Three Quotation Thursday" so as not to feel so bad about myself.

2. I left work last Monday afternoon with a scratchy throat which turned into full blown laryngitis. Good news for the people who have to be around me. Bad news when your job involves a lot of talking.

3. I miss the days when the doctor would always write a prescription for an antiobiotic. I understand the reasons why they don't do that anymore but I paid good money on Wednesday morning for a diagnosis of "I think it's probably viral and will go away in a week to ten days. Get some chloroseptic lozenges, use afrin if you need to, and don't talk."

4. Oh YES!!! THAT will WORK!!!!

5. Lorelai has written a post for "dumb boys" go check it out.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Three Quotation Thursday...What Do You Think?

"They're certainly entitled to think that, and they're entitled to full respect for their opinions... but before I can live with other folks I've got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn't abide by majority rule is a person's conscience. " -Atticus Finch in "To Kill a Mockingbird" (Harper Lee)

Don't you wonder how some people live with themselves? Sometimes my conscience works overtime...I fret over the smallest little thing that I might have said that might have maybe sometime in the oddest little circumstance PERHAPS have given somebody the wrong impression. What is it with people who just don't seem to have a sense that other people and their feelings matter? I just can't understand it...


"Back in 2002, Edwards sent me a Ken doll dressed in bathing trunks, Rio de Janeiro Ken, with a teasing note, because he didn’t like my reference to him as a Ken doll in a column. In retrospect, the comparison was not fair - to Ken." -Maureen Dowd on John Edwards

This just makes me laugh!

"In the South, people take great pleasure in other people's lives, they consider them works of art, eccentrics are discussed and doted upon." -John Berendt

Truer words were never long as our eccentrics are of a reasonably sweet disposition they are community treasures. Is it like that in other regions? Could be... I just don't have a point of reference.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I Know...I'm On a Roll This Weekend

I just could NOT bring work home with me this weekend. I've been missing my blog world SO much and I'm going to do better. It's amazing what a comfort blogging can be, isn't it? This situation where I only have time to blog or read blogs on the weekend is going to have to end soon. The "madness" has begun in our office with people still not sure about what they'll be doing next year and others getting word that their jobs have been eliminated. People are edgy and I feel SO bad for them. It could have been me. I NEED my blogs!

Thanks to those of you who started following the new blog, Life Lessons for Dumb Boys. We'll see how it goes. The girls are excited and REALLY, if any of you my dear friends or your daughters have stories/lessons to share I'll be more than happy to publish them. Just let me can send anything you'd like to my e-mail (

We got the nicest thank you note written on a beautifully monogrammed card in the mail yesterday and I just have to share it with you. What a lovely young southern belle this friend of Lorelai's is...

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Southern...
Thank you both so much for taking us to eat at Magnolias last week while we were at the beach. You were so generous to think of us as we celebrated the end of a successful school year. The food was delicious, and we thoroughly enjoyed our evening. I am so excited that Lorelai will be living with us at Clemson next year. Our week at Edisto was great fun, so I am sure that sharing the apartment will be too! Hope to see you all again soon.
Mary Elizabeth Bradford

Receiving such nice notes from young people these days is a rarity. Both of our children...yes, even dumb boy Legare...have a ready supply of personal stationery and I always encourage them to write more than the standard "Thank you so much for the white towels. I know I will get much use from them. Sincerely, Johnny" kind of notes. I don't know about you, but I kind of take the two line notes as insincere. Sort of a "my mama made me do it" kind of thing.

I'm NOT saying that my kids haven't written those kinds of notes (and I shudder at the thought) but I'm always trying to move them in the right direction.

Don't we have an obligation to our children to make sure they go out into the great big world knowing social graces?

What do you think?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

I almost forgot..

Oh...jump over and see my new venture. Not sure whether or not it will catch on but we'll have fun with it for a time...

A New Blog...

Life Lessons for Dumb Boys

The Season for Love...and Brunch

It's wedding season here in the South Carolina Lowcountry. The beautiful young woman who grew up across the street from us (she and Legare are the same age) is getting married in June.

My next door neighbor Melanie and I decided to host a brunch. Our daughters, her Lily and Lane, and my Lorelai, were hostesses also, but it seems that Mel and I did most of the work. I did the invitations and we had the event at our house. Melanie did the flowers and food. I think I got the better end of the deal for sure. We have to thank "the dads." Hank did all of the yard work and David made lots of trips across the yard bringing food and supplies over.
The menu was broccoli and bacon quiche, chicken salad, fruit, and hot biscuits. We got our guests all "mimosa-ed up" as soon as they walked in the door and hardly had to pour a glass of sweet tea or water all morning.
It was wonderful fun. Enjoy the photos...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

You never know what you might have to do one day...

On school board meeting nights during executive session, several of us always sit around shooting the breeze. The other night we were talking about our children and one of my colleagues related the following...

One night, he and his wife, along with their eleven year old son (now a grown man) were watching television. There was a sitcom on and one of the scenes was a bit heavy on sexual innuendo and his wife mentioned out the side of her mouth that perhaps they should change the channel since the eleven year old was in the room.

The son leaned over to his dad and whispered, "I don't know what mom is getting so upset about. I'm probably going to have to have sex one day so I might as well know how it works."

Gotta give him credit for thinking ahead...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Lorelai's New Summer Job

Lorelai started her summer job at the bank on Monday morning. She had to be there at 9:30 am and got off at 5:00 pm. Today, Tuesday, she had to be there at 8:20 am and got off at 5:10 pm. She had an hour for lunch both days.

I went in to work on Monday morning around 7:00 am and got home about 6:30 pm. Today, I went in about 7:15 am and got home at 9:45 board meeting night. Legare and Hank were STILL cooking supper and Lorelai was in the bed asleep. I went upstairs and asked her about her day. She turned over, looked up and said, "Work makes me tired."

I know just what she means...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Children...Be Nice to Your Mother!

I'm not being a lazy blogger, I promise. Life is coming at me so fast and furious that the time I used to have to blog and read blogs is relegated entirely to the weekends...if then. PLEASE don't forget about me!! PLEASE!!! If I lost my blog friends I would cry!! DON'T MAKE ME CRY!!! that I have that out of my system...

Legare and Lorelai have arrived safely home for Mother's Day weekend and we're getting ready to sit down to a delicious dinner of shrimp and grits courtesy of my wonderful husband. Tomorrow will be a busy and kind of stressful day entertaining mother, Ned, Hank's mother, his aunt and his half brother. Hank's aunt is the only one who won't cause us undue anxiety at some point during the day. That's why I got a little PRE-Mother's Day special treatment.

While sitting at the table discussing tomorrow's plans, Hank made a remark that we (he and I) are going to draw up some kind of legal document so that our children don't have to go through as much unpleasantness as we have getting our mother's settled in safe places. We don't want to put our children through all of that. Legare, feeling all full of himself now that he's just finished up the "estates and trusts" exam and is now 2/3 a lawyer said, "Maybe I've already taken care of that?"

Happy Mother's Day, y'all!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


1. left ear has been giving me a fit. The Ear, Nose and Throat doctor (a cutie pie to be sure) has diagnosed me with TMJ and told me I need to "rest the jaw." My co-workers find this incredibly funny as they believe that the root cause is that I talk too much.

2. The soft foods part of the seven day treatment to see if the pain will ease off hasn't been so bad. I just ate chocolate peanut butter ice cream for supper.

3. I bought Ned an i-Pad. I'm trying it out to make sure it works OK before taking it to him. It might take awhile before I'm absolutely sure. OH who am I kidding. I just bought myself an i-Pad.