Posted in 365 Days of Writing Prompts

A Merry Heart

Today’s prompt is actually three-fold, as if to make sure we don’t skimp 🙂  I just read it and it already has quite a few thoughts running through my head. So without further adue…

Do you consider yourself funny? What role does humor play in your life? Who’s the funniest person you know?

blue flowers

I don’t really consider myself funny, but I suppose I can be at times. I have a blog post that I wrote about attempting to recreate my mother’s biscuits that actually turned out pretty funny. Well, it was more funny to me, I guess, because I was the one who had lived through it! But I attempted to portray that through my writing. I wanted you guys to actually see me with lard all over my hands hollering for someone to come and turn the water on, and then laughing about it the way I did afterwards.

As far as humor playing a role in my life, I wouldn’t really say that it does. More people would say, I think, that I’m a little more on the serious side. Maybe that I worry too much or take some things too seriously. In my honest opinion though, I consider that part of being “grown up” 🙂  I think many Facebook memes call it “adulting” and sometimes it’s fine to lay that aside. But on the overall, maybe it’s just that I’m balanced. At least in my own mind!

The funniest person I know? Well, there have been a precious handful. My brother, who died in 1988 at the too-young age of 31, was most definitely one of them. He seemed to always have a smile and never showed up without a handful of jokes. Where he got them, I never knew, but I don’t think he ever told the same one twice. Everyone liked him and I can still see his huge smile. We shared the same eyes so, like me, when he smiled really, really hard, his eyes seemed to vanish into slits. That’s when you knew he was really happy… there was no hiding it. His daughter carries on a great deal of his personality to this day, with her smile and laughter and eyes that just seems to laugh all by themselves.

start with a smile

And then we had a drummer in our band a few years ago that missed his lot in life when he didn’t become a comedian. He was from Humboldt, Tennessee and I found this out in particular when I asked him, “You ain’t from around here, are ya?”. His strong East Tennessee accent made everything he said even funnier, and keep in mind that I have an Appalachian accent myself! Not that it was something to poke fun at, rather, there were just some words that he would say that came out comical, just because they were so different from the way the rest of us said them. I can’t do them justice in print, so you’re just going to have to take my word for that one 🙂

In closing, I’ll just add a few of my thoughts that had sort of strayed off from the topic a bit…but not really. I got thinking about it from a Biblical perspective, especially the part that says a merry heart doeth good, like medicine. But I don’t ever recall there being an actual story in the Word about “humor”. And please do correct me if I’m wrong about that, because I’m certainly no Bible scholar. Maybe to understand the true Biblical meaning of happiness is about the same as humor.

But these days there are just so many different types of humor that it can draw you down the wrong path quickly. The Bible also speaks out about “coarse jesting” and I would suppose that to be along the lines of bullying someone or dirty jokes and the like.

Of course, it could be that there actually was humor in the Bible and the writer’s simply didn’t write it that way. I don’t know. It seems to me like the times were a little too serious for humor to be something that was common place. There was too much to be done and too much at stake for one to wander off into some other train of thought.

But then, that’s just me thinking. And that can go places 🙂

What do you think? About humor, and it’s place in our lives as well as in a Biblical sense. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter.

Once again, as always, thanks so much for stopping by and have a blessed day!

Also, a shout out for the amazing artist that did the smiley face and rainbow for my featured image…my daughter, Abby!  ❤  She is amazing and did that from scratch!


Posted in Musings

I Wish I Had A Nickel…


There are certain things we musicians hear or get asked on a regular basis and you can always tell they’re coming from people who have no earthly clue what “being in a band” actually means. Sometimes I laugh, sometimes I stare in utter disbelief and sometimes I just have to let the moment pass. But I wish I had a nickel for every time someone asked or said these things.

  • “Wow, it must be awesome to make that much money for just playing music for a few hours!”  Well, honey, I really wish it was! First of all, it’s never “that much money”. Back in the 80’s and 90’s, you could talk about money, if you were with the right bunch of people. Nowadays, it’s not much, if anything at all, to speak of. Then once you add in however many hours, yes HOURS, of practice you have to put in, it drives the per hour figures down immensely. And let’s not forget the real nitty gritty of setting up before you play, then tearing everything down and meticulously putting it all away after you just spent the two hours before the show setting it up and the four hours putting everything you’ve got into the show. Plus the drive home, plus pay the babysitter, then put more gas in your vehicle… it’s a good thing it ain’t about the money…
  • “Oh my goodness, you guys are great! Why aren’t you in Nashville? Do you have a cd?”        So, first of all, thank you, we really appreciate it. Why aren’t we in Nashville? Because there’s a homeless Chet Atkins on every street corner who can pick better than we can! Okay, maybe that’s a smidgen of an exaggeration, but not much. As for the cd…remember that conversation we just had about the money? Well, it takes a whole lot of money to make that cd, or to buy the equipment to make it with. If we REALLY wanted to be making money, that’s what we’d be doing! 🙂  And that’s not even to mention that it’s copyright infringement to record and sell anything you didn’t, as a musician and singer, write yourself, and we’re not all writers.
  • “Can you play Freebird?”                                                                                                               You’re wondering if we get asked that at every show, aren’t you? Yes! We do. We don’t know it but, as we always say, that won’t stop us from trying! 🙂
  • “Come on, just one more!”                                                                                                                This resounding chorus could go on all night long, and there are times it does. Now THIS is the one I’d really like to have a nickel for every time I hear it.
  • “Wow, I didn’t know girls could play bass, that’s awesome!”  Yes, and we can drive and vote now too, isn’t that crazy? HAHAHA! It’s cute, it really is, but I can’t blame the thought. There really aren’t that many female musicians, especially these days. Personally, I don’t have but a handful of memories that go back before me playing an instrument of some kind or another, so it’s just a part of who I am.

So, that’s a precious few of the things I, or we as a band, hear on a regular basis. I suppose if I wanted to sit down and really put a lot of thought into, I might be able to come up with a book’s worth. I’ve always said, it’s a crazy life. And this is part of the reason why…

Posted in Food

How To Make Biscuits Just Like Mom’s!

Step 1: Follow the recipe to a “T”, the way she told you, showed you how and wrote it down for you (at least half a million times, I swear!).

Step 2: Try your hardest to make sure to do everything the same way she did.

Step 3: FAIL!!

HAHA!  This is how my every attempt at making my mother’s perfect, light, fluffy, mouth-watering biscuits has always turned out. Of course, they don’t teach you this stuff in school!  Home-Ec never saw anything like my mother, coming or going, OR her biscuit making abilities.

I watched her all of my growing up years.  I saw how she did it, morning after morning.  I thought I was taking mental notes of her technique and I just knew I could do it.  Let’s see now, how did she describe it…?

Okay, so you take out your big old vintage McCoy bowl that Dad bought at a flea market in Knoxville…no, wait, I don’t have one of those.  Oh well, any old glass bowl will do, right? It’s not as big as the McCoy, but that’s okay. Check!  Now, fill it about half full of flour, then make a “well” in the middle, shoving all the flour up on the sides of the bowl, but don’t – under any circumstances – go all the way to the bottom of the bowl.  Leave some flour on the bottom too, so that when you put in your wet ingredients it doesn’t stick to the bowl.  Check! (This isn’t so hard, I got this!)  Now drop in some lard…

At this point I’d like to interject that I don’t believe I ever saw my mother with a measuring cup or measuring spoon in her hand.  That’s not to say she didn’t have them.  I think I remember some yellow ones that use to hang above the sink in our kitchen. On a nail. Out of reach. Dusty.

Get my drift?

Now where was I? Oh yeah, the lard. Drop some of that in.  Was it two spoonfuls or two cups? (Just picture me, if you will, standing over my own glass bowl, flour everywhere from trying to make it look like it did in Mom’s bowl, with my head cocked trying to see far enough back in my memory to that lowly lump of lard…)

Oh, sweet Jesus, a good fistful should work!!  Check!  Now how in the name of all that is sacred did she even get the milk out with that lard on her hands?? She did use two hands for the lard, right? I mean, you have to use one hand to grab that fistful, and the other hand to scrape it off of the hand that grabbed it in the first place…

Well, now it occurs to me as I’m washing my hands for the sixty-fourth time,  that maybe that was the dough she was getting off her hands after the mixing.

Have I messed up already?  Oh surely not…

Okay, back with clean hands, putting in the milk.  Oh no, how much of THAT did she use?!  Okay, be calm, just pour til you think it’s enough (I tell myself).  There.  Check!

Alright, now if memory serves me correctly, she said NOT to squeeze or dig your fingers down into the flour.  She said to just squish the lard and milk together and once that’s mixed, you take your fingers and just swirl it around and around and the wet mixture would start to collect flour off the sides of the bowl, and as you just tossed that around, eventually your dough would come together…

And hers did.

Every time.

Flawless and without fail or mess, my mother’s biscuits would just appear.  Once her dough “came together”, she would pat on it for a moment and then begin “choking off” the biscuits.

She laid each one either in a cast iron skillet or a baking sheet and put them all nice and close together.  As if she hadn’t already put magicians to shame with her ninja-bread-making skills, she bent her first two fingers and made knuckle imprints in the tops of every one of them. (Please, Lord, don’t ask, I have no idea).

And then, a few minutes later, out came the sheer perfection…


I know, right? Perfect. I never knew her to burn a batch or make a batch that didn’t get completely devoured.

What happened to mine, you ask?

Oh, haha, well, right after the whole lard and milk thing, I did try to “bring it all together”.  I’ve lost a lot of bowls that way, come to think of it.  Anyway, have you ever seen ‘Edward Scissor Hands’?  Well, you could just as well have called me ‘Stacey Dough Ball Hands’ because at about this point in my own feeble attempt to make those biscuits her way, I would inadvertently wind up standing there, dough covering both hands (none left in the bowl now) screaming at the top of my lungs for someone to “please turn the water on!!”

Annnd, out come the whop biscuits. You know, the ones in the can you have to whop on the side of the counter to bust open?  Yeah.

Hey, step 3 was “FAIL”. Might as well fail all the way.

Ahem, now I can’t exactly close here without saying that I CAN, in fact, make biscuits from scratch.  They are good and tall and fluffy and my family absolutely loves them and my heart gets all warm and fuzzy…  I found the recipe on the side of a baking powder tin and I even use measuring cups and spoons, the whole nine yards.

I can’t help but feel like I’m cheating though, especially when I take the whole lump of dough and plop it in my cast iron skillet and cut it with a knife while it’s still uncooked.  I even learned (the hard way) to brush melted butter on top before doing that, so it doesn’t make a huge mess, use up the last of my patience, and get thrown in the trash. Again.  Anyway, cutting the dough before baking means we can just tear them apart when they come out.

Ah, my nice square “not Mom’s” biscuits.  Not Mom’s, but not bad, so I guess it’s not a complete loss.

I’ll share my own recipe, with pics, a little later.  In the mean time, I’d like to thank my mom for sending me the picture of her biscuits.

I love you Mom!