Glory Days

Do you ever think back to when you were young and remember when you had the glow of youth – when your hair was shiny and pretty      without visiting the salon, it just grew that way out of your HEAD? Do you remember  those days of white teeth and clean skin?  Do you have memories  of strong, athletic victories, of dating cute boys and wearing cute clothes, when you and your friends were just shiny, beautiful people?


Me neither.  But I DO remember hanging with my cousin, Ginger, in the heart of Zollicoffer. And that was just as awesome.

Insight into crazy

My husband is not a complainer, but if I had to pinpoint his biggest criticism, it would be that I “don’t listen”.  It’s not that I don’t WANT to hear him, it’s just that I have an entire conversation going on already in my head. For instance, the following is the a transcript from a simple trip to the library.

Hmm, why can’t I ever remember any authors? Nothing looks good. Maybe I’ll find something in the junior section. I wonder why I like books meant for teens. What does that say about me? What happened when I was 12? Maybe there’s something in the adult paperback section. Oh MAN, look at this. Billionaire’s Favorite Fantasy! That’s hilarious. What’s a billionaire fantasize about – how to be a trillionaire? What’s it say on the back? They had shared the most amazing night of passion, but Lewis knew Madeline would quit rather than have people think she slept her way to the top. So he’d have to use every negotiation trick he knew to keep her in his bedroom…and his bedroom! Yeah, I hate it when a one night stand turns out to be my billionaire boss. Oh LORD, I should get this and blog about it. Uh..but then I’d have to check it out and the librarian will think I actually LIKE this stuff. Why do I care what she thinks? If I CARE what she thinks, that’s even more reason to get it. It would be an exercise in not caring. I think everyone should do stuff like this. OK, I’ll get it. I could pretend its for someone else. No, that would be hard to work into the conversation. I’ll get some non-fiction just to show her I’m not entirely stupid. Bob Green’s The Best Life Diet? No, too vain. Greek mythology? Ugg. I’ll just throw a bunch of Rachel’s books on top. Okay, no one else is there, good time to check out. Hey, she didn’t even notice. They don’t even look at the paperbacks. Awesome. Oh darn, it fell off into the floor.

“Brooke, can you hand me Granny’s book.”


How am I supposed to hear with all of this important stuff going on in my head? BTW- turns out a billionaire’s favorite fantasy involves a long, white, politically correct faux fur coat and little else.

Now I know I’m doing something right!

Rachel has a nightly prayer list – a friend that wants a baby, a Christian husband for another, that Arumai, a baby in India, will be healed, the lost, etc. Tonight she ended with this – “and Lord, thank you for my family, my grandparents, my birth family, my birth mom, all the people that love me, and RUSH LIMBAUGH. Amen.”


I would not be embarrassed if someone wants to nominate me as Mother of the Year.

The Coupon Cartel

I love to start all my posts about my mother. She is the only person that I know for sure even reads this blog. I like to imagine her getting her morning cup of coffee, turning on the computer, and then kicking herself for ever teaching me to write.  I think my mom is cool, which is good, because I’m turning into her. See, while it may SEEM like I’ve become a member of the Coupon Cartel overnight, I actually have memories of my mother, surrounded by bags of cast off garbage, searching through them to cut off  labels for rebates. OCCASSIONALY, while at college, I’d get the random rebate check for 1.49 or .72 cents. I say occasionally, because she only sent them to me when desperate, since I always KEPT the money. Like I was going to send it to HER? I was in college!


Here are my deals for today. My favorites are the Johnson and Johnson Little Buddies soap for FREE and the Advil PM for 29 cents. Anything with PM in the title has to be good.  If you live near a Publix, go HERE to get your Advil coupon for $2 dollars off. Then when at Publix, get one of their coupon books from the front. It has a $3 coupon in it. It was 5.29 for a 20 count box.  The Little Buddies coupon HERE was for $1.00 off and they sell them at WalMart and Target for 97 cents!  (You may need to download the coupon printer first. Do it. It’s easy.)

So… Mom, do you still have that picture? You know the one, you’re sitting outside surrounded by bags and bags of trash. I think you’ve got your hair pulled up in a samurai ponytail on top of your head. Could you send it to me please? Please? No reason, just feeling nostalgic. Thanks.

Once upon a time…


a lovely young lady (with exceptionally large accessories) decided that she could not live without being married to a dashing young man with a great smile.


and so she did. *And 3 kids, 9 dogs, and 50 years later – it’s come to this.


My mom actually dated a few other people before she settled on my dad. I used to make fun of one of them. Mainly because his nickname involved his weight and he sold beer out of his garage. But then I dated a few boys myself and gave her ammunition. It’s weird to think that if they had NOT decided to marry – none of us would be here. This awesome, brilliant, completely normal family would not exist! I think the whole world owes my mom and dad a huge THANK YOU!


(*Congrats to Joseph – “3 kids, 9 dogs, and 50 years later it’s come to this” was the winning title.)

Conversations with Rachel


Rachel: I have to memorize Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8. Do you know any bible verses?

Me: The name of the Lord is a strong tower, the righteous will run to it and be safe.

Rachel: Is that the whole thing?

Me: Yes.

Rachel: Do you know any others?

Me: From the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.

Rachel: Man! You know all of the SHORT ones.

A Coupon Story in 2 Parts

Part 1.

Do you like to eat? Do you like steak? Do you live near a Target? Then go to TARGET, click on the 2$ off Sutton and Dodge  link  (the plate with a STEAK on it!) and it will bring up all of the online coupons. Unclick what you don’t want, and print the others from your computer. You can print AS MANY as you want.

Here’s what my coupon looked like –


I printed SIX. Then I went to my local Target and snagged all the cheap steak I could get. Sure, I could have found a great cut for $9 – $12 bucks, but I came to SAVE.  All I needed was something decent that JD could put in chili, or a taco, maybe on a salad. And I was really hoping to pay more like 23 CENTS.



How cool is THAT?I got 6 steaks for about 2 bucks.

Now. Part 2.

While you’re on the Target website, you could also print the Motts applesauce coupon for $1.00 off.  I printed two. Then you could go to Motts and print out the manufacturer’s coupon for .55 cents. You can print two. Then take your 4 coupons to your local Target, buy TWO packs of the Motts applesauce and they will be .11 cents each. Well, they WOULD be. Unless you run into “Christina Christina, Supervisor Hyena” who tells you that you CAN’T use both a Target coupon and a Manufacturer’s coupon at once. And when you protest that you do it all of the time, she’ll say you SHOULDN’T, in which case you’ll leave in a huff, go out to the parking lot and call the Target corporate office where they’ll tell you they most certainly DO take both coupons, put you on hold, call the store manager and tell him to enlighten his staff  ESPECIALLY “Christina, Christina, Supervisor Hyena”! Then you’ll be afraid to walk back into the store in case looks really CAN kill, and as everyone in your house has already pointed out – no one even LIKES applesauce.

I have a lot of time on my hands.

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Playing bridge today, I had an epiphany – everybody HATES me. My partner hates me because I make stupid bids that make no sense and cause us to have a ZERO, which is bad. The opponents hate me because I make stupid bids that make no sense which OCCASIONALLY end up being a TOP, which is good, because no one else in the room would ever stumble themselves into that particular contract. The Director, Meany McSweany,  REALLY hates me because instead of sitting quietly at his computer and inputting scores, he’s being called to my table every 30 seconds to rule if my hesitation/bid/lead/tone/yelp was A) illegal and stupid or B) just stupid.  I’m sure they’re having a special meeting right now to talk about ways to stop me from coming. Cause just being mean and hateful and beating me isn’t doing it. To the lady that called the Director not once, but TWICE  on one hand, your day is coming GRANDMA!

Can You Feel the Love? (and my first contest!) Scroll down for UPDATE

Ahh, true love. It’s hard to believe, (trust me, it’s hard to BELIEVE) but on Friday, March 13, 2009 my parents will have been married FIFTY years. Way to go, Margie and James! How cool is that? I’ve been talking about their anniversary for weeks now with my sister (aka: The Eldest & Wisest) and my brother (aka: The Favorite) about what to do to celebrate. My parents are annoyingly stubborn and have said they want:

No Party

No Gifts

No Trips

No Fancy Dinners out

Basically, no fun/celebration at all.

Yeah, like THAT is going to happen. We had decided to say nothing about the anniversary – make no public comments, no plans, etc. and secretly descend en mass on the mountain as a surprise. Then the storm hit.

A few weeks ago my mom called to say severe winds had taken off their porch and made holes in the living room roof. Since they were going to have to fix the roof anyway, they decided to expand the bedroom, add a new porch, and rip out the ceiling. I find it interesting that my dad has decided to do all of this NEXT WEEK, but whatever. Thus the fear of descending en mass only to find our en ass  on the street has moved us to come clean about our visit. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

We’re going to show up, with a PIG ROASTER and a camera and have a party. Whether they want one or not. We’re going to gather the Guests of Honor, their children, grand-children, grand-dogs and great, grand-child, along with anyone else that wants to claim us as relatives on the mountain for the family photo to end all family photos.

So my beautiful, crazy mom and my hilarious father (who once said, “We wanted to get divorced, but neither one of us wanted the children) will have a photograph of what their love has wrought! I get teary-eyed just thinking about it.

In the tradition of my favorite blog – The Pioneer Woman, I’ve decided to hold my first contest! A 25 dollar gift certificate to The Cracker Barrel (hey, what other restaurant is everywhere??) will go to the best answer of this question: If someone were to write a romance novel about James and Margie’s 50 year marriage, what would it be called? Just leave a comment  with your title and I’ll choose the winner. You don’t have to know them to participate, but here’s a hint – sarcasm is probably the way to go. Just saying.

Signed, The  (poor, unloved, attention-hungry)  Middle One

UPDATE: We finally accomplished something that hasn’t happened in almost 50 years, the parents are on the same side of an issue. They were united in their outrage that we’re coming. HA! All this time I thought Dad was JOKING about neither one wanting the kids. But once we promised we’d stay at least 20 miles away at the State Park, they reluctantly agreed to let us come.

To leave or read comments – click on the title of the post (CAN YOU FEEL…) and then scroll down. You should be able to go from there.