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Life 101 Blog
Life Happens, and this blog takes a fresh view of the past, present and future. A true southern voice.
Too Hor For Ol' Hook
2020-07-15 22:37
It's been hellaciously hot. I only when outside to walk them early this morning, and by the end of the journey, they were weary,I'm going to go to my primary care office tomorrow to have tes… Read More
Field Of Mushrooms
2020-07-15 01:06
The temps were brutal today. I'm sure our friend Bob Miller who lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, would chuckle reading this because it was 113 degrees.The rain this that moved through at the en… Read More
2020-07-14 00:48
I went to the doc today. It seems I have an infection. The bloodwork doesn't appear to be a virus. He gave me a shot with a needle as big as a kindergarten pencil. I enjoy those so much. He… Read More
Under The Weather
2020-07-12 23:17
In year's past, summer was my favorite month. I worked and played hard. In the last several years, that philosophy caught up with me.Yesterday, I did several projects. I thought I'd spread t… Read More
More Butterfly Action
2020-07-12 00:09
I know I've posted a lot of butterfly pictures lately, but I can't help myself. This Eastern Tiger Swallowtail looks like the one that Ol' Hook almost ate a  few weeks ago.Our niece Sam… Read More
Sunflower Honeybee
2020-07-10 23:29
Jilda pointed out in her blog last night that the limoncello sunflowers had bloomed. We have sunflowers that are ten feet tall with blossoms as big as volleyballs, but they are slow to… Read More
Green Thumb
2020-07-10 01:49
Jilda and I walked over to our niece Samantha's house yesterday evening as the sun was setting. She'd never grown a garden in her life until this year. The virus put her out of work, so rath… Read More
2020-07-09 00:35
The gentleman that was to administer my test today has had cancer. He had a radiation treatment yesterday. He asked me to call this morning before I drove the two hours to his apiary.When I… Read More
Testing, Testing
2020-07-08 01:36
Tomorrow I have to drive to north Alabama to take a test that's part of my journey to becoming a beekeeper. In the last few days, I've read a new book, and reread another on the finer points… Read More
Tiger Lily
2020-07-06 00:10
The tiger lily nestles close to the southeast eve of the house. I thought it got sun only in the afternoon, but I noticed this morning that a shaft of sunlight fell on the lily and not much… Read More
Can't Wait
2020-07-04 23:58
While the coffee dripped in the carafe this morning I stepped down to the garden to check on things.Everything is showing out, except for the sunflowers. The picture below, I took a few year… Read More
Slow Down
2020-07-04 01:16
When our elderly neighbor across the road began having health issues a few years ago, I started keeping a closer check on him. His only daughter was an attorney and lived out west. When I wo… Read More
All In A Day's Work
2020-07-03 01:33
I spent most of the day writing stories for the paper. After coffee and a short walk, I was on the screen porch under a whispering ceiling fan tapping keys. After several hours, I was brain… Read More
Hot Bees
2020-07-02 01:10
We woke up this morning to the falling rain. After starting the coffee, I stepped over to the garden door and looked across the garden toward the barn. A light mist hovered just above the gr… Read More
2020-06-30 01:04
It's been years since we planted watermelons. Early in the spring, we met one of our friends to give her some eggs, she reciprocated with four heirloom watermelon plants.That afternoon, I to… Read More
2020-06-29 00:01
A few years ago, Jilda and I spent our anniversary in Fairhope, Alabama. Don't you just love that name? Fairhope is less than an hour from the Gulf of Mexico, but it's nestled on the sh… Read More
2020-06-27 23:15
The canopy over the road to our barn is so dense that very little light finds its way through to the floor.A Google search had this to say about ferns - The ferns constitute an ancient… Read More
Interesting Path
2020-06-27 01:30
One day in June of 1973I was sitting in the sand at sunset.It was a Sunday. (The time and place were written on the back of the picture.)I was on an island off the coast of Panama.Home… Read More
First Time
2020-06-26 01:40
I got an email from the Associated Press this afternoon. Last week I interviewed a local coffee house owner about them putting a student center in the shop so that nearby high school and com… Read More
The Rain Returned
2020-06-25 02:18
It has rained on and off for most of the day. We walked between showers. The dithering clouds were ash-gray one momentand white as gauze the next.The humidity was lickable. On… Read More
Stormy Day In June
2020-06-22 22:40
Last night I wrote my blog entry on my phone. It's always a little wonky, but manageable. At 11:30 p.m., the light blinked on. The AC began cooling the house down immediately.This morning, I… Read More
2020-06-21 00:30
We miss having people over. In normal years, we would have had a fish fry and several family gatherings by now. That all changed this year.But today, we had company. It was the first time si… Read More
A Place By The Water
2020-06-19 23:57
I sometimes think that Jilda and I should have saved and bought a place by the water. When I was a teenager, my dad bought a small lot on the river. My older brother and I helped my dad buil… Read More
Sharp Stick
2020-06-19 00:20
Some days the words come too fast.Some days it's more of a trickle.Some days you have to dig them outof the cranial crevices with a sharp stick. Today, the stick would have come in hand… Read More
2020-06-18 01:33
We sat on the deck before sunrise this morning and drank coffee. Jilda lit some incense to keep the skeeters at bay.When the sun came up, it painted the clouds to the south, subtle hues of p… Read More
2020-06-17 00:29
After lunch, Jilda and I stepped out onto the deck for an analog weather report. I leaned back in the wrought iron chair, closed my eyes, and turned my face to the sun.A shadow flitted… Read More
2020-06-15 23:26
Our pomegranate bush has been hit or miss over the past several years. This year we pruned it in early spring and dug in compost and horse manure around its roots. It didn't take long for it… Read More
2020-06-15 01:46
Today was decoration day, where my folks are buried. I was there before 7 a.m. to collect donations from visitors. The money we collect on decoration day goes into a fund to keep the cemeter… Read More
Whimsical Design
2020-06-14 01:21
There is not a lot of lawn management in our front yard. It stays in the shade most of the day. Early on, we had to decide on a manicured lawn or tall trees. We opted for the latter. So one… Read More
No Power
2020-06-13 03:09
It was still as a photograph outside this evening as we ate dinner. We did a trial subscription to Netflix and were watching a program when the power went off.I have the power company on spe… Read More
Stain Glass Zinnias
2020-06-12 02:23
Today was like a scripted from an enchanting story. The sky was cerulean blue with clouds that look like they were pulled from bottles of aspirin. The humidity was lower than yesterday… Read More
Mimosa Blossom
2020-06-09 01:44
Cristobal made landfall on the gulf coast today and the atmosphere here in Empire has been excited all day. One thing about getting older is, my knees can predict changes in the weather… Read More
A Better Steward
2020-06-08 02:03
I lost another beehive yesterday. I checked it last week and while it wasn't robust, I felt it would endure.The weather this spring has not been bee weather. It's been cold and rainy WAY mor… Read More
2020-06-06 22:24
The Bougainvillea started blooming today. It made it through winter on the screened porch that doubles as our greenhouse when the weather gets cold. I kept it watered, and it bloom… Read More
I Love This Dog
2020-06-06 01:24
Today was busy. Jilda and I walked early, but when we returned, we got the baskets and went back out to pick blueberries. After about an hour, we drank all the water we'd taken with us… Read More
2020-06-03 23:52
I had an opportunity to work a little in my shop today. The old place serves as a honey house and a woodworking shop. The latter is where I build beehive components and so forth. In the last… Read More
2020-06-03 01:13
Driving home this evening, I rolled down the window.  There is something hypnotic about the sound of the wind as it rushes by my window.Pulling into my drive, I knew the gardenias were… Read More
Peaceful Places
2020-06-02 00:22
I wrote on the screened porch today. The ceiling fan whispered overhead pushing a cool breeze that madethe environment feel blissful.Even when the world goes crazy,there are peacef… Read More
Stained Glass
2020-06-01 00:20
I've always loved stained glass. When I was in Panama, there was a small shop tucked between a place that sold cameras and electronics, and rug emporium was a tiny shop that sold intricate s… Read More
New Plant
2020-05-31 01:32
We have a yoga friend we haven't seen since early March. She and her husband love fresh eggs. This morning we had to deliver eggs to the produce stand and pick up some fresh veggies. Our yog… Read More
Fun Time Of Year
2020-05-28 22:52
My walking view today. One of the elderberry bushes we planted several weeks ago bloomed today. I had no idea we'd have berries our first year, but Jilda says the blossom is a good sign that… Read More
Virginia Creeper
2020-05-28 01:09
It has rained on and off for most of the day. After coffee, I moved the laptop to the screened porch to write my column for this weekend. When the clouds moved off to the north, the sun… Read More
Fresh Veggies From The Garden
2020-05-26 00:34
I usually work on Monday, but I took the holiday off. I don't feel comfortable saying happy Memorial Day, because it's a solemn holiday. I've spent time thinking about family and friends who… Read More
Gardens And Stuff
2020-05-25 02:07
Our garden is doing great. The last few nights, it has rained. When I went outside early this morning, you could almost hear stuff growing.This evening, Jilda and I walked over to her brothe… Read More
2020-05-24 01:20
Every high school in the county held graduation ceremonies last night. It's still not safe to do them indoors, so all of them were held outside on the football field at 7:30 p.m.Photographer… Read More
2020-05-23 03:00
Our nephew Haven surprised me today with a great gift. He was working at his dad's house next door and called me to come over. I was cutting grass, but a break sounded good.Call me lazy, but… Read More
Warm Day For Bees
2020-05-22 01:31
This spring has been wacky. Warm, cold, cool, hot, frosty, cold, warm, cool, hot, and so forth. The bees are kind of analog. They are either ON when it's warm or OFF when it's hot. Ther… Read More
2020-05-20 00:16
When Jilda and I first moved here in 1980, the bank next to the road had gnarly weeds that grew on it. I spent hours using a weed eater clearing that bank.Apparently, my efforts only annoyed… Read More
It's Been That Kind Of Day
2020-05-19 00:55
The weather today has been tropical. I'll never forget the day I stepped off the plane in Panama. I remember thinking, I have to get out of this jetwash. The weather was like that for almost… Read More
Rat Snake?
2020-05-18 01:19
While walking, Ol' Hook is the scout. He's out ahead looking pirates, bear, aliens, or other ne'er-do-wells lurking ahead. His job is to clear the path, and he doesn't fret the small stuff… Read More
A Good Feeling
2020-05-17 01:46
As Jilda and I drank our coffee this morning, the sun peeked through the canopy and cast a golden light on the citrus trees just outside our great room windows.  Jilda was telling me ab… Read More
Wild Hydrangeas
2020-05-15 23:38
I don't have much to say today except that the oak leaf hydrangeas are blooming. Some people call them seven bark. I've always called them wild hydrangeas. It's a beautiful pl… Read More
Another Day In Empire
2020-05-15 02:13
Jilda and I walked down and picked blueberries this evening when the sun dipped below the tree line to the west. A cool breeze came up as I picked. I could smell the freshly mown grass from… Read More
We've Been Robbed
2020-05-14 01:03
I've interviewed a half dozen high school seniors within the last few weeks. They all feel cheated by the coronavirus. The final weeks of the senior year are iconic. The prom, signing yearbo… Read More
I Miss My Critters
2020-05-13 01:04
This week is the seventh anniversary of my little friend's death. Ol' Buddy was a piece of work. I've written about him several times, but when my calendar dinged to remind me, I looked back… Read More
2020-05-12 01:17
I came across a plant this morning as I walked. It was at the edge of the yard. I wish I knew its name. I read once that to become a better writer, one should learn the names of trees, birds… Read More
Good Sight To See
2020-05-11 00:19
The weatherman said we could have frost last night. Honeybees like warm weather. When the weather is warm, then cold, then warm, then cold, they can collect much nectar and pollen.I fretted… Read More
I Can't Imagine Life Without A Dog
2020-05-10 01:50
I've walked over 13,000 steps today. The garden got tilled, beehive boxes were built, the grass was mowed, at so forth. Kodak made every step I made and more.I wish I had a Fitbit on him bec… Read More
2020-05-09 00:34
Walking yesterday, I heard Kodak barking. He seemed to be really interested in something in the tall grass. When I walked over, I saw that he was trying to get a Box Turtle to play with him… Read More
Not To Be Unwise
2020-05-08 01:45
It's been chilly at night, but the day warms up nicely. The see-sawing temps have the bees confused. I have no idea how it will affect how much honey they make. Time will tell.I will say thi… Read More
2020-05-07 01:26
I've been reading in the news for the last few weeks about an insect from Asia that somehow made its way to the state of Washington, and it's causing concerns among beekeepers. It's called a… Read More
Number 46
2020-05-06 01:12
One year ago today, Jilda and I were sitting on the bench pictured below. It was our 45th anniversary. As we sat the listening to the eternal whispering surf, we decided where we would for o… Read More
2020-05-05 00:01
The indigo treasure hunt begins.Last week, Jilda and I bothplucked ripe berries as big as our thumbs from our bushes.They were harbingers.Today, Jilda picked a handful, the birds picked more… Read More
Friend Of White Jasmine
2020-05-04 01:46
My nephew showed up before I finished my coffee this morning. I hit the plumber's lotto when he pulled my ticket. He works hard and I hate to ask him to do work for me, but this was importan… Read More
Felt Good To Be Alive
2020-05-03 00:56
It's been beautiful here today. These last several weeks, it has been remarkable. By mid-afternoon, the temperature was in the low 80s.The back deck is our starter garden. We have tomatoes… Read More
Retirement Anniversary
2020-05-02 00:47
I'm not sure how I missed it, but I did. A few weeks ago, had I remembered, I would have celebrated my 10 anniversary of my retirement from AT&T.I started out with the phone company as a… Read More
Things We've Learned
2020-05-01 01:38
Several weeks ago, I interviewed a gentleman about gardening. He was a wealth of knowledge. His words were measured. His knowledge came not only from experience but from a degree in horticul… Read More
Tulip Poplar
2020-04-30 01:34
A lite mist fell as we walked this morning.The first wave of rain had moved off to the northeast,but a second wave was less than an hour behind.We walked with a purpose...The purpose was to… Read More
Todd Hit The Lottery
2020-04-28 23:46
Lasts week, while driving back from an assignment, I got behind a pickup truck pulling a trailer. I saw something small on the edge of the road, and the next few seconds played out in what s… Read More
More Bee News And Other Stuff
2020-04-28 00:01
I wrote three stories for the paper today. I'd done the interviews over the last several days, so today I tapped keys.Mid-morning, I took a break and went to the bee yard to put the swarm I… Read More
2020-04-26 02:15
It's been an exciting week at HomeFolk Honey. Back in December, we had four healthy hives. At the end of March, we had three. I ordered a new package of bees, but the delivery date wasn't fo… Read More
Message In A Bottle
2020-04-24 22:39
The rain moved off to the east yesterday. The clouds moved out just in time for a beautiful sunset. Today has been stellar. Walking this afternoon, I came across an old bottle next to t… Read More
The Flowers Were Thankful
2020-04-24 01:29
Not much to reportExcept, that todayWas mostly cloudy.The sun came out late in the day.The flowers were thankful,And so was I.Life stories, writing, music, advice, southern, Alabama Read More
Sleep Soundtrack
2020-04-23 02:21
It was cooler today than I thought it would be. The sun was shy. We walked, but I had to go back inside on the second lap for longer sleeves.We did see some interesting grass growing. In yea… Read More
Take Aways
2020-04-22 02:14
Today was a workday here. I had a webinar on writing this morning and two interviews with high school seniors after lunch. All these assignments left me hopeful.When I got home from the inte… Read More
A Day Of Learning
2020-04-21 02:15
NOTE: This is an update on yesterday’s post.I put on my bee suit this morning as the coffee dripped and walked down to the apiary. Standing behind, I placed my hands on the sides to fe… Read More
Try And Try Again
2020-04-20 00:12
It's been an old rainy day here. We did have a short reprieve in the morning so Jild and I took advantage and walked the dogs.  Once down at the peach tree, I saw that the swarm of bees… Read More
I Need A Better Veil
2020-04-18 22:37
Jilda and I made a run to the coop today to get feed for the chickens. I donned my masks and headed in. There were only a few people there, so keeping a safe distance was easy.Once home, Jil… Read More
Road Trip
2020-04-17 01:16
I plucked another photo from the archives. This one is from the day after Thanksgiving, 1968. Jilda and I had been dating for about six months.Her daddy didn't trust me as far as he could th… Read More
Moments I Will Always Remember
2020-04-16 00:47
I played baseball until I graduated from high school. Each spring, I gathered with a group of my friends to practice on a dusty field. I wish there had been a counter on my bat because I mus… Read More
Time Machine
2020-04-15 01:39
This weekend, I was looking for senior portraits for Jilda and me. The idea was to post them on Facebook. I started to ignore it, but the idea was to share things that lifted spirits. T… Read More
The Loss Of A Musical Brother
2020-04-14 01:33
My Army bunk the first week I was in Panama in early 1972 seemed like the loneliest place on the planet. It felt as if I were a million miles from home. Thankfully, a pair of headphones teth… Read More
Dodging Storms
2020-04-13 01:21
I came across a cache of old pictures I hadn't seen in years. I came across a picture of me that was taken on Easter Sunday.I didn't dress up much, but Easter Sunday was a special day. After… Read More
Red Tip Photinia
2020-04-12 00:29
I've lost count of the days. My blog, buddy Joy has been keeping a daily journal. Since I write here each day, it's kind of a journal, but there are things I don't write here.Pulling my priv… Read More
Take Heart
2020-04-11 01:10
Jilda and I walked early this morning. It was chilly, so the kids next door opted out to spend a little more time under their warm quilts.On the first lap, I noticed the trees that line both… Read More
Take If From The Horses
2020-04-10 01:03
Social distancing. I know it's a new concept, but it wasn't hard for me to grasp.Keep a distance between each other or risk dying a horrible death.I was born and night, but not last night.&n&hell…Read More
Dog Tales And Apple Blossoms
2020-04-08 22:56
It's been an old gray day today. The rain moved out in the early morning hours, but it didn't take the clouds with it.Even though it's been cloudy, the air was heavy with humidity making it… Read More
2020-04-07 23:51
I had to cover a city council meeting today. It was closed to the public, and all the people that attended were spaced at least six feet apart. I wore gloves and a mask. It looked as if I wa… Read More
Search And Rescue
2020-04-06 00:22
When our niece Samantha was about five years old, the coal company that owns the property down behind the barn decided to cut timber.We had no right to that property, but we'd treated it as… Read More
Garden Stuff
2020-04-04 22:45
Jilda and I worked outside for most of the day. I've tried to order potting soil from our local provider because I can pay with a credit card over the phone, and the crew will load it in the… Read More
The Way My Brain Feels Tonight.
2020-04-04 00:00
Some days my brain feels like a fishing cork. Not a new spongy one, but an old one that's spent too much time in the river. Hard around the edges. Fish make fun of it.Tha… Read More
Out Of Words
2020-04-03 01:15
I've written stories for the newspaper in the last few days about how COVID-19 impacts our community. The people I interviewed were friends. Two have the virus and are in quarantine. The oth… Read More
More Important Things To Share
2020-04-01 23:39
I saw a thread on social media today bashing journalists. As a journalist, it bothered me. When I sat down a while ago to write, I wrote my thoughts on the situation.After several paragraphs… Read More
Discover Something Interesting
2020-04-01 01:24
When the rain moved out during the early hours of the morning, it left a cold front in its wake. It was over 80 degrees f one day last week, but today a warm sweatshirt felt good.Jilda walke… Read More

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