Friday, August 27, 2010

IN THE BACKYARD...



...there is a pecan tree. As I've mentioned before, my late father started this tree from seed. He liked to do that with lemon trees, orange trees, avocado trees, grape vines, and of course, pecans.

The tree is loaded with pecans this year. See? He'd be very pleased, but as I've also mentioned before, I never get to eat any because of the squirrels. Their policy apparently is to harvest early and often. They've already started their bite and toss assessment operation, which will continue until the nuts are mature enough to suit them, at which point it's every squirrel for himself and the tree gets picked clean.

The best I can do is take a picture. (Sigh)



Sunday, August 22, 2010

LIST: 10 UPLIFTING MOVIES (Maybe)














Do I agree with the list? Are these movies "uplifting"? Well, let's see:

UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN: Yes. Very. I have the DVD and watch it often. It's one of my favorite movies mostly because it follows one of my favorite writing themes: The making of a family where no family existed before.

TOOTSIE: I can't say I remember being "uplifted." What I remember is Dustin Hoffman's amazing acting ability. Uplifted or not, it's a movie worth seeing for that alone.

SOUND OF MUSIC: Well, here's the thing. I love the song "My Favorite Things." (I have a musical globe that plays it.) But I never liked the movie. I know I'm supposed to. EVERYBODY loves SOM. But I didn't. I think it was "the Captain." He was a very scary man, and I never got over it.

SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION: Yes, on the "uplifting," and yes, on the complex and riveting plot and the stellar acting. I should get the DVD. I don't know why I haven't.

LOVE, ACTUALLY: Yes. I love this movie and I have the DVD. I make a point to watch it around Christmastime. Love the father-son relationship.

IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE: Okay, I'm not crazy about this movie, either, and for pretty much the same reason. I saw it when I was too young, and James Stewart when he was Mean Father and Husband scared me. I still don't like to watch it, even though everything turns out just fine in the end and he's not mean anymore. I'm just not the least bit "uplifted."

BABE: Yes. "Babe" is a sweet movie. The sequel, not so much.


UP, THE BLIND SIDE, and BREAKING AWAY, I haven't seen these -- but hopefully I will. I can always use a little "uplifting." Hopefully.










Saturday, August 14, 2010

We're the Mustangs, We Can Win!

What a sensation -- seeing my grandson play football for the same high school where both his dad and I went. Same field. Same bleachers. Not the same Cheryl, however. (I forgot how hard stadium seats are. Yikes.)

Want to see him? He's Number 51 (dark blue). (Go Mustangs!)


video

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SEPTEMBER






I first remember reading Rosamunde Pilchur's work -- her short stories -- in GOOD HOUSEKEEPING magazine. I didn't read any of her novels until much later, and I confess that I completely missed her Mills & Boon-slash-Jane Fraser period.

The later novels are the ones that fed my appreciation of her work. For one thing, I like "cozies," i.e., family sagas that make the reader care about what happens to the story people therein, sans the car chases, explosions, and gratuitous s-e-x.

And I like to "travel" when I read, to be transported "Somewhere Else," to feel that I'm actually there and learning new things, all the while being completely entertained.

Finally, I like the Cornwall roots, I think because of the Cornish miners who emigrated here to work the mines in Gold Hill. (As I've said before -- maybe -- two of my great-great grandfathers had dealings with with gold mines -- one as an owner, one as a miner.)

I loved THE SHELL SEEKERS, and I read WINTER SOLSTICE while keeping a vigil at my late sister-in-law's bedside.

But SEPTEMBER is the one that speaks to me most, simply because of this one passage:



"...Death is nothing at all. It does not count. I have only slipped away into the next room. Nothing has happened. Everything remains exactly as it was. I am I, and you are you, and the old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged. Whatever we were to each other, that we are still. Call me by the old familiar name. Speak of me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference in your tone. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word it always was. Let it be spoken without effort, without the ghost of a shadow upon it. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was. There is absolute and unbroken continuity. What is this death but a negligible accident? Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around the corner. All is well."

From SEPTEMBER © 1991 by Robin Pilchur, Mark Pilchur, Fiona Pilchur and Philippa Imrie.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Cheryl's Food Awards, Fast and Otherwise


Kent Bernhardt, a popular local radio personality, gave out his "Foodie" Awards recently. Since I didn't agree with any of them, I thought I'd do My Own.

Cheryl's "Foodies" go to:

Darrell's in Rockwell: The Small Hotdog, All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Hamburger Club Sandwich
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Hershey Cake (Yum!)
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Banana Pudding (Likewise)

Captain D's: Hushpuppies (They taste like real, oniony hushpuppies and not cake.)

Richard's in Salisbury: The fries
Richard's in Salisbury Again: The Small Hotdog, All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)

The Farmhouse in Salisbury: The Farmhouse Burger, No Cheese
The Farmhouse in Salisbury Again: The fries

The Cookout in Salisbury: The BLT
The Cookout in Salisbury Again: The Hotdog All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)

McDonald's: The Southwest Salad

Zaxby's: The Roadhouse Salad
(I used to like their chicken salad, but apparently they decided it would be better without garlic.) (No)

Johnny's in Rockwell: The iced tea. (Fish and crustacean-eating people tell me the seafood there is excellent. I wouldn't know.)

Taco Bell: Their original taco (Please. Don't try to "improve" it.)

I'm am a big barbecue fan and a number of these restaurants have barbecue. Unfortunately, the barbecue isn't consistent. Sometimes it's great, many times, not so much. Ergo, nobody get's Cheryl's "Foodie" Award for barbecue. Maybe later.

Cheryl's "Eeek, No" Award goes to Wendy's New Apple Chicken salad (It's the cheese. Strong blue cheese does NOT belong on that salad), Subway's Orchard Chicken Salad Sub (I won't go into detail), and Taco Bell's New Cantina Taco. (It's the wrap. And the filling.)

That's it for this time. Happy eating...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Into The Photo Archives (Again)



I've been poking around in the Reavis Family Photo Archives again and I thought I'd show you this one. This is the Reavis home place where the dh grew up. His late mother loved irises and roses, and she filled every possible space in their back yard with them. This was before my time, so I never got to see the iris-rose garden in its heyday, but I'm told people used to ride by in their cars on Sunday afternoons just to see them when they were in bloom.

She was a strong woman, my late mother-in-law. Widowed young and left with a toddler boy and two teenage daughters, she held the family together. She worked in the cotton mill, took care of her children, and she still found the time to do this. I wish I'd told her how much I admired her...