“You Can Have the Town…”

Looking back I realize we watched a lot of television when I was growing up, because I remember characters on TV as well as I remember the people I interacted with in real life. Maybe it was because television was still so new, still a novelty to my parents who were older when it first…

No Fear.

I don’t remember being afraid the day my mother and I climbed out onto the side of a mountain in Yellowstone to play in a patch of snow. But to hear my mother tell the story, I should’ve been. She claimed we nearly died that day. It was one of the summer vacations we took…

Birthday Gravy. And other things guaranteed to stick.

One year my birthday fell on a Sunday and at the age of ten, I had no idea what trouble my mother went to to pull off what I asked for that year. I wanted to eat Sunday dinner at home. I was tired at eating at Luby’s. I asked my mother to fry chicken…

A World of Difference

Six years ago my world was very different. On this day six years ago I received a phone call I won’t ever forget. I could take you to the exact spot where I dropped to my knees and wept as my dad’s voice came over the phone. “Sally, Joe Rex has been killed in a…

Friends Who Help Us Find Our Way

Sometimes it’s the simplest moments – the seemingly insignificant events of an ordinary day – that make all the difference in our lives. Like the day in high school when my friend Carolyn asked me to compete in a speech tournament. “Hey, Sally,” she said. “We need somebody to do impromptu speaking at the Old…

Remembering

Driving through Austin this weekend made me remember all the times I hauled students to the University of Texas for the U.I.L. state tournament. I drove past a hotel where we stayed one year for the state cross-examination debate tournament. That was the year that during dinner at Papasita’s, one of the guys ate a…

No Drink.

“No, we’re not getting a drink.” That’s what she told me as we walked briskly by the water fountain and into the auditorium. Quite frankly I don’t remember anything about the whole incident because I was just a toddler. But I know the story well from my mother telling it. We were traveling to a…

Catching Up With Downton Abbey

All my life I’ve heard that if you’ll just do something every day for a month that it will become a habit.

I have not found this to be true for me.

But thank God, I get to try again.

More Than a Loaded Baked Potato

My dad’s been staying with me while he recovers from back surgery and this past week we ventured out of the house for the first time for dinner. Daddy wanted a steak, but when the waitress set the plate down in front of him, all I could see was the baked potato. Cheese, bacon bits,…

Lilies after Easter

When we started to have some warmer days awhile back, one afternoon while I was letting Chester outside, I noticed something on my patio that I didn’t expect. You see, last year I bought a lily for Easter. They were selling them at my church in honor of those who had passed away during the…

Last Suppers

About this time last year, my cousin, Andy, brought a couple of guys with him to help move my parents into an assisted living facility. They left early so the guys could get back home in the same day. I’d been secretly packing things the week before, not wanting to disturb my ailing mother, both…

The Taste of Love

The sense of taste, so they say, is almost as powerful a memory trigger as the sense of smell. So last Friday night when I put the first bite in my mouth, I was instantly taken back. The smooth texture of the not-too-sweet cream cheese frosting, chock full of pecans. The crunch of carrots mixed…