Ribs Turned into a Gridiron in Hell

It’s that time of year.  Not Fall, not the turning of the seasons.  Election season.

Every four years, the talking heads claim that this election is the dirtiest ever, that the language used is harsher than in years past.  That got me to thinking.  Is that true?

I’ve been reading old newspapers at GenealogyBank.com, concentrating on the Texas Revolution and Davy Crockett.  Davy was quite a character.  He had huge numbers of admirers, but also some detractors.  I’ll discuss him more in depth in later posts. Today I want to highlight this March 25, 1835 column in a Nashville newspaper.  The original thoughts were published in the Washington City Globe, under the Union section.

Davy and Andrew Jackson fought Indians together in younger days, but parted ways by 1835.  Jackson served as president 1829-1837.  Below is a transcription of the newspaper article, as I can’t post an actual picture of the copyrighted column.

“But as Davy Crockett has now become the favorite with those Nashville journals, we must expect them to repay the northern supporters of the President with insult.  They republish the letters of the Tennessee clown, who is made to father all the silly conceits which the Jack Downing letter writers of the Bank prepare, to throw ridicule and contempt on the President and the northern Republicans.  When the Nashville prints thus openly take such a person as Crockett into alliance, – a tool of the Bank who is taught to pronounce the President a tyrant and to wish his ribs turned into a gridiron in hell, &c, &c – we think that not much confidence is to be placed on their professions of friendship to the President.  And he would certainly be unwilling that those should give tone to public opinion in Tennessee, in regard to himself, who take their key note from Davy Crockett.”

Wish his ribs into a gridiron in hell.   Today these words would probably be interpreted as a death threat and Davy would already be deep in the bowels of the Secret Service.  Also see some North and South separation creeping in, and name calling on both sides.:Tennessee Clown. President a tyrant. Tool of the Bank. Such a person as Crockett.

I’ve got some more reading to do.  Talk later.

Spay Day 2011 Online Pet Photo Contest

Spay Day 2011 Online Pet Photo Contest.

It’s Blog for Your Breasts Day

Today is the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  You know, when the world is pink-tinted and throngs of women (and some men thrown in) walk the streets of America to raise money for breast cancer research and treatment.

I bet that every reader here today can tell a breast cancer story.  You are a survivor, you had a cancer scare, you have a relative that has gone through cancer-hell, you lost your best friend to the disease.  I’ve had 5 immediate female relatives and several good friends fight breast cancer.  Some are survivors, some fought till the end.  I’ve done what I can to help but often wonder if there is more I could contribute.

About a year ago I discovered The Love/Avon Army of Women (AOW).  Here’s what they do:

“The Love/Avon Army of Women (AOW) is a unique program of the Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit breast cancer research organization. The program is funded through a grant from the Avon Foundation for Women.  The AOW provides an opportunity for men and women to take part in breast cancer research studies aimed at determining the causes of breast cancer – and how to prevent it. The AOW is a groundbreaking initiative that connects breast cancer researchers via the internet with women who are willing to participate in a wide variety of research studies.  The goal of the Army of Women is to recruit ONE MILLION MEN AND WOMEN of all ages and ethnicities, including breast cancer survivors and those who have never had breast cancer.”

So want to know what you can do?  The AOW wants all kinds of people to join with them in researching and preventing cancer. Young, old, thin, overweight, moms, singles, male, female, cancer survivors, never-had-cancer folks, all colors of the rainbow, healthy eaters, junk-food eaters, those on hormones, those not-on-hormones, menopausal, peri-menopausal, still-having-period-gals.  You get the idea.  The AOW wants YOU!  When you sign with the Army of Women, you are NOT signing up for a study.  You are volunteering to be placed in a database, to be sent invitations to participate in studies, or let others who would qualify know about the studies.  Participants will be involved in important research to discover THE CAUSE of breast cancer – how to stop it before it starts.  You are FREE to say yes or no to any study, and there is no cost to you to participate.  These are also not clinical trials.

I joined the AOW and  I get periodic emails asking questions to see if I qualify for a study or if I know someone who might be interested in participating.  Sometimes the study is just an internet study, sometimes the AOW is looking for people in a certain geographic area, sometimes the study is a physical study like a blood test or swabbing your cheek.  Here are some current studies:

The Milk Study: Using Breast Milk to Screen for Breast Cancer and Assess Breast-Cancer Risk

Sleep, Circadian Hormonal Dysregulation and Breast Cancer Survival

Yoga for Breast Cancer Survivors: Effects on Fatigue, Immune Function, and Mood

Combination of Low-Dose Anti-Estrogens with Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Prevention of Hormone-Independent Breast Cancer


The Army of Women

is asking for this many volunteers.

Please consider joining The Army of Women and spreading the news to your family, friends, co-workers, blog readers.  Here are ways for you to help:

  • Tweet for AOW using #WritePink
  • Update your Facebook status with: “I signed up to STOP breast cancer before it STARTS.  Have you?  Join today at www.armyofwomen.org, then copy and paste this status update as your own”.

Please join me by joining The Army of Women today and let’s gang-up on breast cancer.

With special love to Mom, Grandmother Ethel, Grandmother Myrtle, Pam, Aunt Adelle, Patricia, Brenda, Syl, Jill.

All writing property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

I blogged about a book written by a woman who had cancer in her family here.  And did you know there is a special cleaning service for those going through chemotheraphy, no matter what kind of cancer.

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Still Winners

The newest thing in wedding cake!

Last week, I asked my readers to go vote for my dear friends The Royers as their cafe was nominated for a big honor.

Thank you to all who voted and tweeted to help the cause.  Royers Round Top Cafe did not win the ultimate title of People’s Platelist.  That was most disappointing to me.

Royers caters weddings. This is a lip-smacking menu.

But, they are winners in my book and in my heart.  Entrepreneurial, generous, kind, loyal, bakers of the pies I love and crave.  You are WINNERS in my eyes, Royers.  (Big J, Little J & I got to sell pies in front of the cafe last Sunday, and I’m selling again this Saturday.   It’s crazy time in Round Top, otherwise known as Antique Week. I would never sneak a bite….)

Welcome to Royers Round Top Cafe

I offered to send a reader who helped with the voting a pie, and the winner is:


If you did not win a pie, I’m sorry.  I wish I could ship a pie to everyone who commented.  But YOU can order a pie and have it shipped to yourself or someone you think needs a pie *and who doesn’t*.

All photos and writing property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

Royers did not ask to do the pie giveaway and did not provide the pie that is being shipped to the winner.  I am paying for it with my very own money.

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Royers = ABC Nightline’s People’s Platelist = possible pie for you

Well, hello there. I’ve been away, having a little nervous breakdown. My virtual eyes were bigger than my virtual tummy. Just substitute Snail Mail Notes, blogging, Facebook, Twitter, work, home, couponing, start of school with sports/homework and photography for a Sunday church potluck of roast, ham, turkey & dressing, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, jello salad, homemade rolls with butter, cherry pie, peach cobbler with ice cream, chocolate cake and cheesecake, and you get the idea of how overwhelmed I was feeling. I think I will still be slow to jump right back in to the blog, but I have missed writing and hearing from you, my readers and commenters.

A Royers spread. NUM NUM!

I hate to jump right back in and ask a favor, but I have some dear friends who need your help. I’ve written about Royers Round Top Cafe (in Texas) on this blog before, and I still love ’em today. They are one of 18 finalists from around the country who are nominated for ABC Nightline’s People’s Platelist. You can vote once a day between now and Sunday. I KNOW, I am so so so behind on this. I would really appreciate you running over to the ABC site and voting for Bud Royer and Royer’s Round Top Cafe.

Royers at night

Now here’s the fun part. One of my lucky readers is going to win a fabulous Royers pie which will be shipped to you. Leave a comment below this post telling me you voted for Royers Round Top Cafe. This is ON THE HONOR SYSTEM since I can’t check, so I am trusting you!

*You can have 3 entries for voting, Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

*You can also leave more comment entries by tweeting about this contest. Be sure to come back here and leave a comment, showing when you tweeted.  Tweet something like:  PLZ Vote for Royers Round Top Cafe for ABC Nightline’s People’s Platelist. Best. Pie. Ever. http://bit.ly/aqjc1K

*One more way to enter: go to Royers website, check out their pies and come back here to comment and tell me what kind of pie you would choose if you win.

I’ll be back early next week to announce a winner, and a WINNER you will be if you get a pie delivered to your front door!
Sorry, this is US residents only.

All writing and photos property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.
I was not compensated in any way for this blog post.  The Royers do not even know I am writing this blog post, and I will pay for the giveaway pie myself.  I’m just doing this ‘cuz I love ’em.

Bud the PieMan

Winner of “What We Have” Giveaway.

Thanks to those of you who were nice enough to read my review and enter the book giveaway.  I wish I had a book to give each of you as I think you would enjoy it.  Buy your copy or check the library, but do put this on your reading list.

The winner is:

Donna Albert

I’ll be in touch on how to get your book to you.  Thanks, again, to all who entered.  Check back with LoneStarLifer as I will be having more reviews and giveaways.

All photos & writing is property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

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I {Heart} Faces Beach Fun.

This week’s I ♥ Faces photo challenge is “Beach Fun.”  We are not beach people.  Well, I’m not a beach or sun person.  Big J grew up in Florida and lived on the beach, but since moving to Texas 24 years ago, he has seen very little salt water.  The nearest beach to us is Galveston but we just don’t go there.  We have good friends in Corpus Christi and see them every year or so, so if we get to a beach, Corpus is our destination.  When I saw this week’s challenge, I knew my photo choices were purty slim.

BUT, I love this picture of Little J as this is his first time playing in the Gulf of Mexico and he was so enjoying racing the waves.  The water may not be as pretty as Florida or the Caribbean, but the smile on his face says it doesn’t matter.

See more beach fun at I ♥ Faces

All writing and photos property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

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What We Have. A Review. (With Author Q and A)

Amy Boesky was always looking over her shoulder.  She knew a sharpshooter was following her, but she could never make visual contact.  Amy wasn’t alone; her two sisters and mother were also being shadowed.  Other members of Amy’s family (their black and white pictures hanging on the wall in Amy’s home) had fallen, and Amy was aware of the tick-tock of the clock, wondering if her name was next on the list.  The novel: What We Have: One Family’s Inspiring Story about Love, Loss, and Survival.  An international spy novel?  No, a wonderful memoir by Amy Boesky, chronicling how fear of developing ovarian cancer (the sharpshooter) dictated many life decisions, and how she took back her life.   In the pages of this poignant, familial, often humorous book, we watch Amy’s transformation as she names and faces her fears, finds strengths she never knew she had, embraces the goodness around her and chooses to live her life as normally as possible.

At age 32, Amy has a great job as an assistant professor in Washington DC, a new man named Jacques and a baby on the way.  The future lies before them.  But Amy has deadlines.  She and her sisters have set age 35 as the cut-off date for having babies, afterwords having preventive surgery to hopefully protect themselves from ovarian cancer.  Amy’s mom Elaine and older sister Sara have already had the surgery and Amy is marking the calendar as each day of her life moves closer to 35.  Adding to her stress is Jacques, whose inner clock runs on an opposite timetable.  Trying to find balance between the immediate and the “it will get taken care of” is yet another plate Amy tries to keep spinning.

Boesky has an honest, authentic voice as she describes the first year of motherhood.  The exhaustion, the baby’s inconsolable crying (was it colic?), the sweet moments when everything goes right, the breastfeeding issues, the slow transition from nervous and anxious to competent and comfortable.  As Amy narrates this season of life, her descriptive, heart-felt writing kept me involved in her challenges and cheering when she achieved success. In the midst of this first year of babyhood, Amy accepts a new teaching position and the family moves to Boston, living in a rental house with green shag carpet.  Keeping in daily contact with her mother and younger sister Julie is Amy’s touchstone.

Amy shares more of  the year following the Boston move, but I want you to read the book so I’m not giving too much away.  Turning the pages through that year, I observed changes in Amy as she grows in her love for her expanding immediate family, finds a home that matches their hopes and budget, and lives through dark days with an unwanted outcome.  Boesky sees that life can be lived in fear, or it can be lived with gratitude for the gift of each day that comes to us, for the preciousness of family love and time spent together, for the unknown possibilities and surprises. As I traveled with Amy, I, too, felt that life, the good AND the bad, is to be lived and lived bravely.  I have long believed and marveled in the elasticity of the human spirit, and reading What We Have validated my trust in coming through the worst and being able to stand tall on the other side.

Reading What We Have was very personal for me.  Breast cancer is the sharpshooter in my family and Boesky echoed many of the concerns and fears I have dealt with in the past.  There are no simple answers when grappling with genetic testing, preventive measures, disclosing or staying quiet.  And as Amy points out, those decisions can change as we move along our timeline.  Combining what has gone before with what we now know, living each day deliberately, is the best we can do.  Finding peace in those decisions is up to us.

Thanks to Gotham Books (and Jess) for the opportunity to read and review What We Have.  I was provided a free copy of the book, and  would like to share the book with one of my readers, so please leave a comment and include contact information.  Comments will be closed on Wednesday, August 25 at 11:59pm and the winner announced within 24 hours of closing.

I was very fortunate to be able to have a short Q and A session with Amy Boesky.  Thank you, Amy!

Lone: Before you wrote What We Have, did you  have much discussion about this portion of your life with your girls? When the book was published, did you have to share more than you were ready to share? Or was it a good catalyst for discussion and options? Have they read the book , and what do they think?

AB: This is a great question, Paula. I did talk with them, in varying ways and at varying times, but I think writing the book (which has been happening slowly over the past 5 years or so) really did help as a catalyst, as you put it so well. The girls read drafts, especially of the prologue and conclusion, and we talked a great deal in relation to their reading.

Lone: Since the end of the story in 1993, have you seen more promising medical news/studies about ovarian cancer?  Are you involved in any kind of studies since you have had the preventive surgeries?

AB: I continue to see my doctors at the Farber, and I know they are involved in a number of promising studies. But personally, I haven’t been involved with them. I think for me a big part of having surgery was the deal I made with myself that I could live a “normal life” (whatever that means!) once the surgery was done.

Lone: For a reader who has a hereditary family disease (mine is breast cancer), what would you hope they take with them after finishing your book?

AB: Another great question. I don’t believe in “one size fits all” when it comes to living with difficult choices. But I do feel that I want to make the hard questions more public—bring this into an arena where more of us can talk about it, consider ways in which we can make hereditary cancers easier to live with for the next generation.

I was provided a free copy of What We Have for this book review.  I was asked to give an honest review and the opinions stated in this review are strictly my own.  I was given no compensation.

Writing and photos property of LoneStarLifer. 2010. (Book cover provided by Gotham Books.)

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Flashback Friday. 8-20.

Flashback Friday is the brainchild of Tia over at Christopher and Tia. Go on a flashback with me.

A very young *young is relative* mom with a very young son.  I bet we have 100 pictures of Little J before he’s two months old!  And that was before digital cameras.  I’ve been going through the pictures, sorting and throwing away the duds, getting ready to send another batch to ScanDigital for scanning.   Why did I keep dozens of bad pictures, thinking I had to keep every shot that was taken.  I kept this one because I was having a GOOD HAIR DAY!

That little baby just turned 13 and started 7th grade.

For you younger mothers, let me share something from my heart.  You are stronger than you ever imagine you could be.  You WILL get through these days of scattered toys, spilled milk, temper tantrums, too little money and too little sleep, too many diapers, putting in and taking out of the car seat.  Take every giggle, every wet smooch, every book time, every quiet moment of love, every this-little-piggy-went-to-market and tuck them away in your heart.  Pull those treasures out and run your fingers over them when you think you cannot go one minute longer.  The past 13 years have alternately sped by and drug on, but each day is 24 hours and you don’t get that time back.

Little J, I am proud and honored to be your mommy.

Flashback Friday Button

P.S. If you are ready to start digitizing your photos, please give ScanDigital a try.  And even better…here’s a coupon code to get $20 off $100 of services.  Get ready.  Here’s the code. Rf448378

All writing and photos property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

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Wordless Wednesday. 8-18.

From Answers.com: On Wednesdays all over the internet, bloggers post a photograph with no words to explain it on their blog. Hence the ‘wordless’ title. The idea is that the photo itself says so much that it doesn’t need any description.

Look for more fab Wordless Wednesday posts here:

All writing and photos property of LoneStarLifer. 2010.

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