We say grace…

We say grace. Here in the Bible belt, rarely a meal starts without someone saying grace — a prayer of devotion and gratitude — before the family dives in. We give thanks for the nourishment of our bodies and souls. We give thanks for the blessing of another day. We give thanks for family and friends. Grace … Continue reading We say grace…

Hold the sugar, Sugar

Let's get one thing straight: sugar has no place in grits. If you want to put sugar on your breakfast, eat oatmeal. Eat Cream of Wheat. Eat Ralston. But never, ever, under any circumstances, put sugar on your grits. There. I've said it. Grits are meant to be salty and buttery. Sprinkled with black pepper. … Continue reading Hold the sugar, Sugar

She’s gone to the dogs – or – Canine colloquialisms of the Deep South

Talking with a Southerner can be an entertaining, albeit sometimes confusing, venture. We love to be colorful. We delight in our colloquialisms. After all, why use just one old boring word when you can liven up the conversation with 4 or 5 or more and convey the same idea? For instance, you may see your … Continue reading She’s gone to the dogs – or – Canine colloquialisms of the Deep South

A Southern snack staple

What is so good, so delectable, so prized that a seemingly sane person will jump a police barricade and run out in front of a moving vehicle to pluck it out of the beer- and horse apple-tainted street and eat it? A MoonPie, of course! Originally intended to be a filling snack for miners, the … Continue reading A Southern snack staple

Southern hospitality – or – How are your Mama and ’em?

If there is one thing that sets Southerners apart from the rest of the country, it has to be our hospitality. Over and over people who are not from here tell me just how nice everyone is, how downright friendly. So much so that it’s almost…well, weird. Drive down any country road and you will … Continue reading Southern hospitality – or – How are your Mama and ’em?

Murdering killers who might also be witches

When you live out in the country, isolated from neighbors, you take extra measures to keep your family and property safe.  My grandfather ("Baw" to me) was very vigilant. There was a gun behind every door, he had a pistol, and we had dogs that alerted us to any newcomer.  As an added layer of … Continue reading Murdering killers who might also be witches

A Southern Belle chimes in on the Jersey Belle

"Jersey" and "belle." Not two words one usually hears together. That is until Bravo smashed them together into a hot reality mess set right here in, well, let's just say the Birmingham area (Mountain Brook, Cahaba Heights — they can't seem to decide which). I haven't watched the show. For the record, I don't watch … Continue reading A Southern Belle chimes in on the Jersey Belle

I love to tell the story

Storytelling runs in my family. We sit around and tell the same tales over and over and over. Somehow they never get old. Extra emphasis, a rolled eye, a dramatic pause entertains. A little extra detail here and there educates. In the retelling, heritage and history are passed down. My grandfather, "Baw," and his brothers … Continue reading I love to tell the story

Sook and Sarah

I stood at the foot of her grave, the bahia grass tickling the back of my knees and a cacophony of summer insects loud in my ears. I hadn't come to Monroeville looking for her, but I'd found her. Sook. Twenty-seven years ago, almost to the sweltering June day, I stood at the foot of … Continue reading Sook and Sarah

The Walk — Part 2

One step is all it takes to begin a journey, whether it's a thousand miles or only one. When I was a little girl I walked a thousand miles through Citronelle. With no one to look after me, I stayed at Mama's office. More accurately, I strayed around Mama's office. Left to my own devices … Continue reading The Walk — Part 2