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Drink the Good Wine First

Life is short. Drink the good wine first.

My mother believed the exact opposite of this sentiment. For one, she didn’t drink and for another she strongly believed in saving everything for that elusive “someday”. She stored the “company” silverware, sets of towels to be used by guests only, the “nice” dishes, and a gorgeous set of deep red goblets. “I’ll use those someday and I don’t want any of them broken,” she told me. I had attempted to take them out of the china cabinet for Christmas Day dinner. Mom also had an amazing collection of porcelain dolls, in the hopes of decorating a granddaughter’s room someday. We had two boys, so the dolls have a home in my basement (maybe there is a granddaughter in my future).

With her best treasures stored away, she made exceptions and did display everything that anyone had ever given her. There was not a blank spot on a wall or vacant resting place anywhere in her house. My favorite was an angel collection that her dearest friends kept adding to year after year.

As the New Year rolls in again and I’m missing my momma, a particular king sized bedspread from J.C. Penney comes to mind.

I was just starting fifth grade when we moved to the house on Cleveland Street. The master bedroom was decorated in a strange combination of celery green carpet and light golden walls. Mother bought a spread in a medium shade of maroon with pale pink and red roses laying in a leafy background of green and gold, the exact shades of her new room. It was perfect and looked like the room had been decorated around the spread instead of the other way around. I helped her lay it across the bed. After we admired it for most of one morning, I helped her stuff it back into the original plastic cover and we shoved it into the top of her closet. “I’m saving it to use someday. I don’t want to get it dirty,” she told me.

Someday never arrived. My father was diagnosed with cancer and mom with heart issues, so she moved into my old room with a blue and white check spread and blue shag carpet (which they never replaced) so that Dad could rest undisturbed during his chemo treatments. To my knowledge she never did take that maroon rose bedspread from the top of her closet. Both of my parents passed away too young, leaving me, their only child, with bulging boxes of evidence that they existed from a life lived ages ago. Still in the original packaging, well protected from dust, the rose bedspread belongs to me now. Maybe I’ll use it one day. Maybe I won’t. In the meantime, pass the good wine, please and let’s toast to a New Year. I hope you realize all of your dreams in 2023.

What I’m working on…

I have several projects lined up for this year, and hopefully, a few more I haven’t thought of yet. COOKBOOK: I’m three months into the research for a second cookbook with TwoDot Publishing! END OF TRAIL EATS will feature the recipes and history of the Kansas Cowtowns. Coming early spring 2024. VET STORIES: I am editing a delightful collection of stories for an Arkansas veterinarian, who is also my husband’s childhood friend. I can hardly wait for animals lovers to read this. You’re gonna love it. JUST FOR KIDS: There is a coming-of-age story that weighs heavy on my mind set in the Texas frontier involving a Comanche brave and a mule team driver. It’s been an emotional and challenging topic that I have labored over for many, many years. I have set myself a personal goal of getting this one out into the world. My youngest son has been tasked with designing a book cover. ROMANCE: There are several ideas and drafts for more romance novels. I confess that I am a huge fan but it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to write. SHORT STORIES: Watch for a few of my short stories and novellas to be offered FREE to readers. I’m looking at several delivery options.

LIFE is short. FORGIVE quickly, KISS slowly, LOVE truly, LAUGH uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you SMILE.

Use the “company” towels and drink the best wine first!

Happy New Year!

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Bye-bye 2022 — it was good knowin’ ya…