Making Dreadlocks Using a Tool

Tag: Tradition



In my earliest memory, I was standing on my tip toes, trying my best to watch my mom cooking on our 70’s green counter-top. I remember being excited, hoping to sneak a taste of the cake she was making. Growing up, food was one of […]

Making Memories

When I got pregnant with our first child, my husband and I started talking about what kind of traditions we wanted to start. As DINKs, (Dual Income, No Kids) we had no traditions. We pretty much did whatever we wanted whenever we wanted. But now […]

Things girls shouldn’t do

Things girls shouldn’t do

Junk to scale.
Junk to scale.

Fifteen or so years ago (boy am I getting old) I had dreams of owning a recycling business. Reusing old scrap metals wasn’t quite as fashionable here in the midwest and neither was the idea of women driving dump trucks. Back in the day, my dad was part owner in a demolition business. I can remember going to a job site after many days of begging and pleading. You see, little girls didn’t do such things like exploring old factories. I remember one particular building we explored was an old laundry factory. It stood about three stories tall. Inside was slide that spiraled from the top floor to the ground floor about 30 feet high. Oh and I forgot to mention the fireman’s type pole. That was before OSHA and of course no one told mama.

So a couple of weeks ago I was called to recycling duty….or should I say Fred Sandford duty. How and why….just know I did. Yes, I drove a loud pick up truck to what used to be called a junk yard but what is now a recycling center. If I were single, suffice it to say there were plenty of  helpful guys, business owners, driving expensive rigs, but I digress….I saw all sorts of big boy tonka trucks, tractors, rail cars, chippers,

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Gotta keep it cute! Check them out, in the store.

etc.  The recycling centers are big business. Our recyclable metals are taken to the centers, sorted, chipped, sold to China for pennies on the dollar, while China refabricates our junk and sells it back to us.  Hmm. Just thinking.

The trip to the junk yard brought back old memories….and what ifs…

Big boy/girl toys
Big boy/girl toys
Junk pre sorted and pre- chipped.
Junk pre sorted and pre- chipped.
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Metals now sorted, chipped loaded on rail cars to be shipped to China.
Mom's drafted for the cause wearing her recycle Eath Day tee.
Mom’s drafted for the cause.
More big boy/girl toys.
More big boy/girl toys.


Yesterday I sat down with a new fashion magazine and I was reminded of when I was a little girl flipping through my mom’s copies of Essence. On occasion when her stack got too thick, my mom would bring home a couple poster boards and my […]

A Bit of My Legacy

Some of you guys live in the most wonderful places. I remember as a kid being fascinated by elves, dwarves and fairies in the enchanted forest. You know the familiar story lines of little girls and boys taking a passage through the woods to get […]


It’s about 7 when we pull up alongside of a road cut that I’ve been eyeing for the last few weeks. I had conscripted my conspirator in the dastardly deed into collecting some rock samples this Saturday morn. We, or should I say he, grabbed  about 20 good sized rocks and we scurried home. It’s hot  and sticky and here I am bent over with a hammer and a makeshift chisel splitting rocks searching for fossils. So far not one, I was just about to give up. I picked up my last rock, carefully looking for seams. I placed my screwdriver along the seam and stuck the head hard enough to separate but not cause it to crumble. The rock split perfectly. No fossils, but instead the gray stones interior revealed an unexpected iron oxide deposits with dendrites that reminded me of those beautiful sonoran desert scenes.  Instant nerdgasm.

If you know what a road cut is, you, my friend, are a nerd.
 Do you have a budding nerd in your circle of influence? Is there some special ability or talent that you can cultivate and pass on to the next generation? Start with something simple.
When my kids were very young, we would ride up to one of our favorite spots, Greasy Creek, and collect everything from rocks, crayfish, newts, fish, you name it. From there it blossomed to “speriments” in jars in the bathroom,  model rockets, building telescopes, electric cars, flying cars and on and on. Every summer I’d buy workbooks and paperback classical novels, and some new “speriment” to try. We weren’t rich, just average, so back then at least  a fancy  pair of sneakers and cable bill could pay for a lesson or two and even a summer’s  project.
Though I’m no numismatist, geologist,  nor ornithologist I enjoy sharing these light hobbies with my budding grand nerds.
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Healthy Air

I know you have all seen the articles encouraging us to share our space with house plants. Those stories typically stay by listing all the reasons for poor air quality and resulting health hazards then recommends one large plant per room.  The first thing I […]

Let’s do better

I had started to daydream as I looked out of the huge window on a perfect sun filled day enjoying my lunch. A friend walked up and we chatted awhile, I can’t remember about what really, when she asked me if I were wearing a […]

For the Fathers

For the last six weeks like many of you I’ve been riveted as we watch our nation go through this season of growing pains. I don’t know about you but for me everything is off, I’m behind in my gardening, I missed my Mothers Day post, Memorial Day celebrations have come and gone, and now Father’s Day is upon us. In a way, in this season of change is much like the spring weather here in the midwest. I’ve witness lightening while snowing, snow at easter, extreme heat, tornados, and gentle rains. But here in the MO and particularly in the land of the “big canoe” or  the “show me state” after the storm we are witnessing change and hopefully peace that comes after the storm.

This Memorial Day season I find myself reflecting back on the images I experienced as a little girl riding in the back of my dad’s old cadillac, undulating along those 2 lane highways of southern MO, Memphis, ending in Clarksdale Miss. That was in the early 60’s. I can remember as a small girl listening with my grandma on her radio and hearing the voices of King and Kennedy, but I digress…
I’ve been very fortunate, no blessed by having strong and powerful male influences as a kid. I’m not saying that I’ve arrived, heck no, but I’d just like to take a second and honor my dad. He was the son of a sharecropper, with barely an “8th grade education.” I can remember him going back to night school, working six days a week doing back breaking labor in demolition and in  steel sometimes working two jobs to feed his family. He often told us that he could teach us to work hard with our hands but he wanted us go to school and work hard with our minds. My dad had dirty jobs back in the day, when there was no OSHA. He is a man’s  MAN.
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I know some of you are doing double duty, this is not a slight against you. I’d just like to give props to the dads, the men and the fellas that are holding it down for their love one’s and making the little ones like me “daddy’s girl” or boy, or niece, or nephew, or cousin or friend…..
Be You

Be You

There it stood in front of me, one of my favorite trees in our back yard. It was summer and this particular morning I had on my obligatory denim cut off jean and my brand new red gingham blouse. I loved that tree back then; […]