top stories and wedding woes

January 29, 2022


My son’s wedding is barely a week away, and three days ago, in the middle of the night, I suddenly awoke with the sensation of a steak knife being jabbed in my eye. The doctor said I had scratched my cornea — I have no idea how, but now I look like Shrek. “Ogre of the Groom.”

Perhaps all the “looking back” I’ve been doing lately has injured my eye. “He was a skinny little teenager a few years ago — it was just yesterday he was a roly-poly little boy.” My mother’s inner-eye must have sprained a retina-thingamajig. 

It’s hard to hold my eyes open in sunlight.  I have my computer set on low-light now. Will there be sunglasses for me at the wedding?  Half my face is “swoll-up” like a butterbean. (Is “swoll-up” a new southernism for you? I remember people saying that all the time).

I was hoping to get a few good stories from  being the Mother of the Groom, but this isn’t what I had in mind. 

My friends have already come to my aid. Once, just because I was overwhelmed with a craft project for the rehearsal dinner, and later today, one has volunteered to come help sew the front of my dress together so I don't "spill out." I’d rather settle for being discussed as the mother with the “eye-thingy” than the mother who flashed the guests. Nice girls grew up with “pin” boxes close to the door so their mothers could pin them into respectability before they stepped out of the house. Old habits die hard. 

Until I can give you a full story on the wedding, whether I can actually see it or not . . . I give you my list of the top 5 stories of 2021. Ahhhh . . . the good old days. I'll fill you in later on how a dear reader helped me with my eye situation. I've always said you are the best readers, and now you've come to my rescue in a new way! - thanks Bill (and Beth). 

Before January slips away, here are the most-read stories from my blog and newspaper column for 2021. And no, the story about Clark Kent the cute little puppy who was 9 pounds when we adopted him, and grew to 72 pounds in 6 months wasn't one of them. Close . .  but no-go. Poor Clark. 

#5. The Faith of Bobby Bowden

This story was dear to my heart since I met Bobby Bowden and spent time at his house several times over the years while I was a student at FSU. It was the only story I knew of that focused on his faith and not so much his career or football. He was the coach at Samford (Howard College) while my parents were students there, and later, my son Harrison filmed him in an interview, so three generations of my family met and admired him for far more than his football knowledge. 

#4 A Perfectly Timed Love

This was a story about personal friends of mine, Karl and Erika Pellinat who died within a week of each other after living an amazing life which started with their separate escapes from communist Germany. A full page story on Valentine's Day was only the tip of the iceberg. They had so many more adventures than what I could squeeze into this story, I'm so glad you liked it and wish all of you could have met them. 

#3 The 1964 Sears Catalog

I don't blame you. I was just flipping through the catalog again the other day. It's fascinating! 

#2 Pants on Fire

Here's a fun fact - a slight majority of my blog readers are men. I don't know how the computer knows that, but I believe it's because I write about my sons so much, men of all ages can identify. This story about Harrison (yes, the one getting married) probably rings a familiar bell with many of the "grown up little boys" out there. Shame on all of you! 

#1. Still wearing white? You've been snookered

Ta-da! This story wasn't so much a lesson in Southern fashion rules as it was a lesson on, "question the source." 20-something interns wanting to make a name for themselves as "tastemakers" should be questioned. I heard from many of you who agreed, debated and wanted clarification on  loopholes (if it's corduroy or wool, it's "winter white" and approved. Linen - NO!).  Overall, you read it, shared it and loved it — or hated it, but read it anyway! Thank you! 

Thanks to all of you for your loyal readership. Although I'm no longer writing a regular weekly newspaper column, I hope to bring you more stories this coming year. You can find me reading some of my work on Wisdom Harbour Studios, speaking to groups (send me an invitation - I'll show up!)  and stay tuned for more new writing projects. I'll have lots to say about weddings! 

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