Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Count Your Blessings

"When upon life's billows you are tempest tossed.  When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost.  County your many blessings, name them one by one, and it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.  Are you ever burdened with a load of care?  Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?"  Guy Penrod

Tomorrow being Thanksgiving I thought this would be an appropriate song to reflect over the year and count my blessings.  Not that it takes Thanksgiving for me to count my blessings, but it is the holiday people recognize as the day of THANKS.

This song came to mind Monday night when I woke up during the night and couldn't go back to sleep. I was whining around, complaining because I felt bad and couldn't sleep.  I complained all day yesterday then I thought about the people that are REALLY sick.  Sick with cancer or any other disease that makes them sick EVERY day.  I thought about the people who are hungry as I was complaining that I wished I hadn't eaten so much.  I thought about the homeless as I was wrapped up in my blanket trying to get warm.  I just thought about people in general that are much less fortunate than what little I do have.

I remember singing this song as a kid but I'm sure I never stopped to think about counting my blessings.  I mean as a kid who thinks about being thankful for the food you have, the roof over your head and the clothes on your back. That's what parents are for, right?   So today, being Thanksgiving Eve I want to count my MANY blessings.  I have more than enough to eat, a house to keep me warm, clothes way more than I need and a job that allows me to buy these things. I have a family and friends that I love, both my parents are still living, and a loving God that is the reason I'm able to write this blog with a heart of gratitude and thankfulness.

Tomorrow my family will eat at my grandmother's house and there will be lots of food, catching up and laughter.   I will miss my grandparents who aren't with us anymore and this year my Aunt Mary won't be there but we still have plenty to be thankful for.  Thankful that my Aunts still have Thanksgiving for my dad's side of the family since my grandparents are gone, thankful that my mama is still able to cook turkey and dressing for us, thankful that my dad is able to come to Thanksgiving, thankful for my aunts and uncles that will be there and thankful for all the fun we will have just enjoying being together.

My lesson today is so simple it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure it out.  Count your blessings, no matter how big or small.  Count your blessings one by one.  Count your blessings money can't buy.   Count your blessings and give back if you can.  I know I will!!!!  I'm walking in a walk that cans of food is the entry fee to help with the hungry and before I have my own Thanksgiving dinner I'm serving at the local homeless shelter.  No I don't do it for the praise or recognition, I do it because I can.  I do it because I hope that for just one day, people can be hopeful and more importantly that they feel love on this Thanksgiving day.

  Love to all and Happy Thanksgiving!!!
   Sweet Southern Sass

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Let Them Be Little

"I can remember when you fit in the palm of my hand.  Felt so good in it, no bigger than a minute.  How it amazes me, you're changing with every blink, faster than a flower blooms they grow up all too soon."  Billy Dean

How many times do we hear, where did time go, it seems like yesterday you were a baby.  Well I can tell you I think it all the time.  My son is now 38 years old and it's so hard to believe he is grown, married and has children of his own.  Lord have mercy where does time go?

Sometimes when I'm alone and think about time, my mistakes and if I would do anything different I wonder if he thinks I was/am a good mother.  I was so young and didn't know a thing about being a mother but I did try.  I always gave him praise when he did good, but he also got his hiney tore up if he got in trouble.  Being a single mom there were a lot of things I did as both parents.   He was involved in every sport growing up, so that meant I was the one catching the baseball when he was learning to pitch, catching the football when he was the little squirt learning that and believe it or not I coached him when he played basketball.  I was probably harder on him than anyone because I wanted him to be the best at anything he did. 

I remember his little arms reaching up for a hug, crying because he got hurt but more importantly I remember the giggles and laughs that just warmed my heart.   Warmed my heart because I knew he wouldn't be giving those hugs forever and the giggles & laughter would turn to being grown up with responsibilities.   Now he's not little any more, he's all grown up with his own kids and I see him doing the same thing I did. I see him playing on the floor or outside with his boys when he should be cutting the grass or some  other grown-up responsibility .  I hear him laughing with his boys just like I did with him and that warms my heart as much as hearing him when he was little. So maybe, just maybe my parenting skills weren't as bad as I thought.

"So innocent, a precious soul, you turn around, it's time to let them go."  The first time he went off to basketball camp, he said don't be hugging me in front of my team.   Guess what?  I didn't listen.  But neither did the other mom's standing outside that bus watching their sons leave on a week-long trip for the first time.  That was hard but even harder was when he got married.  Bless my heart I couldn't decide on a mother-son dance song because every time I tried I cried like a baby.  So you can only imagine what happened at the wedding.  Yep, I cried like a baby the whole dance, patting him on the shoulder and holding on for dear life.  I mean he was about to leave to start a new chapter in his life and I was afraid those hugs would be fewer and further between. 

Lesson today?  "Let them be little, give them hope, give them praise, give them love every day.  Let 'em cry, let 'em giggle, let them sleep in the middle" and for goodness sake hug them every chance you get.  Let the dishes go, let the laundry wait another day, and maybe the maid might get it when she's through playing.  LOL

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Friday, November 10, 2017

American Soldier

"I'm an American soldier, an American beside my brothers and my sisters.  I will proudly take a stand when liberty's in jeopardy.  I will always do what's right.  I'm out here on the front lines, sleep in peace tonight American soldier.  I'm an American soldier."  Toby Keith

I think I will go a little different on this one.  It's Veteran's Day and we all need to thank a Veteran.
My family is full of American soldiers and that makes me proud.  My daddy was in the Army and fought in the Korean War.  He doesn't talk about it much and we don't have many pictures because that was many years ago.   But let me just say right here, this taking a knee crap doesn't set well with him.  Wait, what am I talking about, it doesn't set well with me either. 

The American soldier to me is way beyond anything I can comprehend.  They're always on duty, can't call in sick on Mondays and they work straight through the holidays.  He wants to be a good husband and father and meet the needs of everyone else.  He's not a soldier for the money because he's still unable to pay all the bills and the glory isn't a good reason because it's not always glorious. 

 Toby Keith says The American soldier is a soldier because he has to fight for the future of his family and his country.  He is aware of the risks of being a soldier and he claims he doesn't want to die for his country but if that happens he will "bear that cross with honor" because he understands the cost for the freedom we enjoy in our country.  He will fight for freedom and liberty, and if that's jeopardized then he will take a stand because that's WHY he is an American soldier.

Lesson today?  I said it in my opening statement.  Thank a Veteran today!  Thank him for the sleepless nights and missed holidays away from HIS family to protect YOUR family.  Thank him for the endless hours of being on duty to protect our great country.  Heck let's go a step further and thank their spouse too because while HER American soldier is away protecting us, she's home protecting her family without her American soldier. 

  Thank you our American Soldier,
   Sweet Southern Sass


Thursday, November 2, 2017

If You Came Back From Heaven

"I wouldn't know what to say, I wouldn't know what to do if you came back from heaven and I would look at you.  Would I fumble for the words, would I be a little shy, would I bust right out with laughter or break right down and cry."  Lorrie Morgan

WOW and WOW again, these are some powerful words.  I can think of several people what I would do if they came back from heaven.  Ya'll that have followed me know the very first one is my friend Andrew.  If he came back from heaven, I can tell you right now the first thing I would do is run and jump in his arms for one of his big ole bear hugs.  Yep I would be running 'cause he's so tall I would have to get a running start to jump that high.  I wouldn't be shy and I wouldn't fumble for words because the very first thing I would tell him is how much I miss him.  I wouldn't cry except for tears of joy but for sure within a few minutes I would be busting out with laughter because that's him.  He always made me laugh, sometimes I laughed so hard at him, tears rolled down my check.  Yep, I definitely would not be without words for him.

Being that today is my Grandpa's birthday he's the next one I'm thinking of if he came back from heaven.  I don't remember Grandpa being a hugging kinda man but I just know if he came back from heaven I would have to give him a hug.  I mean he's been gone a long time and I sure do miss him.  Just thinking about him today reminds me of his last Thanksgiving with us.  I can close my eyes right now and see him walking through the door to eat with that grin only he could do, his eyes sparkling because we are all there.   He loved us grandkids but I really think I was his favorite.  OK all ya'll other grand kids don't get all bent out of frame, we all know he didn't have any favorites but... I am the only one that could call him Grandpa, so in my book, that makes me his favorite.

Then there's my Aunt Dot.  Lord have mercy where do I start with her?  I hope God knows if he let her go I'd never send her back.  I wouldn't send her back because I miss so much about her.  I miss those calls at night, some she just wanted to talk, some she needed to straighten me out and of course there were the ones trying to get me back with that one somebody that she loved.  By the way, it's still not going to happen.  I told my mama if my Aunt Dot couldn't make it happen it would never happen.  I do know what they say about "never say never" but I'm pretty sure hell will freeze over before that particular wish of hers happens.  Bless her heart, she certainly tried.

The last person I think about if she came back from heaven is my Mama Highfield.  I saved her 'til last not because she's any less important or less missed, but because she's the grandmother and that means special attention.  I hope God knows if he let my Mama Highfield go, I'd never send her back either.  I wouldn't send her back because I want her to see my two grandsons and see what kinda grandmother I am.  I want her to hopefully see that I learned a lot from her and I hope she thinks I'm the BEST at it or at least the best that I can do.  I've never been the best at a whole lot, but I do know one thing for sure and that is that whatever I'm doing it's at 100% and giving all I got.  I'm not sure I could ever be as good at grandmother as my mama and Mama Highfield but my wish is that they see I'm giving it my best shot.

Lesson today?  Stop and think for a second who you want to come back from heaven.  Think about why you want them to come back.  Do you want them to come back because you miss them?  Because you need to say you're sorry about something?  or simply to just say good-bye because you didn't get that chance.  So with these questions asked, we all know we can't have people sent back to us from heaven and this is all pretend, so don't let that time get away that you regret not spending time with the special people in your life.   Don't wake up one morning and find out someone special in your life is gone and you're wishing you had spent more time with them or told them you love them.  Do it TODAY!

 Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Monday, October 23, 2017

Jeremiah Was a Bullfrog

"Jeremiah was a bullfrog, was a good friend of mine.  I never understood a single word he said but I helped him a-drink his wine.  And he always had some mighty fine wine singin' Joy to the word, all the boys and girls now.  Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea.  Joy to you and me. "   Three Dog Night

Ok ya'll I know for sure when you start reading this one you're thinking what in the world can she say about this, Jeremiah ain't no bullfrog and I'm sure he doesn't have mighty fine wine.  Well the Jeremiah's I know certainly aren't bullfrogs and they probably don't have mighty fine wine, but  but let's just pretend today and go to the deep blue sea with Jeremiah and find some JOY!

Since I don't have a clue what this song is about I turned to the trusty Mr. Google.  What I found was a common interpretation of the writer's bullfrog is the prophet Jeremiah from the Bible and the song represents God's desire to unite all people in happiness.  The bullfrog, with his distinctive call that stands out in nature, is God's voice.   Holy Moly whether this is right or not, I LOVE it.  I mean what a better time to write about this than right now with all that's going on in this country.  What if this tiny little bullfrog could bring joy to the all the boys and girls, joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea and joy to you and me.

This song has always made me happy or to stay in line with the song brought joy to my soul.  Reading the words "if I were king of the world tell you what I'd do" made me stop a minute and wonder if I had that power to be king (or in my case queen) what would I do.  OK since you asked here is what I would do.  I would throw away all the hate, violence, abuse, sexual assault and war.  Hate is such a strong word but unfortunately it's in this world so I would replace all the hate with JOY!  Joy to the boy and girls and joy to you and me.  I would replace all the violence, abuse, sexual assault and war with JOY too.  Give joy back to the ones affected by violence of any kind, JOY back to that person abused or sexually assaulted and JOY back to people affected by war.  Writing this I'm thinking all these things are so horrible, how in the world could a person ever have JOY in their heart.  Getting joy back in your heart is hard but if I were queen and had the power I would make all the boys and girl, men and women, fishes in the deep blue sea have JOY, JOY, JOY down in their heart.  I would have them all have the love of Jesus in their heart, down in their heart to stay.  And if the devil doesn't like it, he can sit on a tack, sit on a tack and stay!!!  Then I would be so happy, so very happy, that everyone has Joy, Joy, Joy down in their heart.

Lesson today?  Since I have you all singing about a bullfrog I think my lesson today will be for you all to google this song, turn it up loud and just let the JOY of the song take over.  Let the joy take over your heart, let it bring peace where there is hurt and let any hate you have be replaced with JOY.  Joy down in your heart, way down in your heart.  Let the devil sit on a tack, sit on a tack and let him get STUCK!!!   Once you feel all this joy I'm talking about, turn ole Jeremiah up one more time and "dance it out."  Don't worry about who's watching, they're probably not anyway.  JUST DO IT!!!

  PEACE OUT & Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Friday, October 20, 2017

If It Wasn't For A Woman

"I close my eyes and she's right there.  Barbie dolls and teddy bears, picking buttercups from the yard putting them in mason jars.  Tea parties and pecan pie make me think of her every time.  Yes sir, yes ma'am it wouldn't be who I am if it wasn't for a woman. "  Kelly Pickler

Kellie Pickler says she was inspired by her grandmother for this song.  Well this same song makes me think of my own grandmother every time I hear it.   Pecan pies aren't the only thing that reminds me of my grandmother, but she sure could make some good ones.  My sister thinks hers are as good, but come on ya'll, we all know our grandmother's makes the best EVERYTHING!!!

 I don't remember us having "tea parties" but I guess when my grandmother made her "tea" cakes it was a party because my Aunt and me watched like we were gonna learn how to make 'em but we all know how that turned out for me.  For ya'll that don't know what a tea cake is I googled the little things and found lots of descriptions but the one I like best is Divas Can Cook description.  "Tea cakes are as old-fashioned and southern as church funeral fans, make you wanna hum an old spiritual kinda thing. They aren't cakes or cookies at all.  They're kinda like a cake, cookie and biscuit all in one if that makes sense."  Some people think they should be crunchy but not me.  I like mine soft and a little sweet, just like my grandmother made them.  Sometimes she put chocolate icing and oh Lord have mercy, that was for sure a party.  Not icing from a can but the real stuff she made herself.

I'm sure we picked buttercups, but the flowers I remember most at my grandmother's was those little blue/purple ones she called thrift.    As far back as I can remember she had that stuff everywhere and we always got in trouble for picking them.  Keep in mind the little boogers didn't have stems long enough to put in a thimble, let alone put them in a mason jar, but that didn't keep us from picking it.  My favorite story about thrift was when Grandpa killed some birds.  We buried them, had funeral services and put that thrift all over their little graves.  I'm for sure we got in trouble for that because there were a lot of thrift picked that day.  Can't ya'll just see us now?  I wonder what songs we sung?

So many things I remember about my grandmother but another thing that comes to mind today is when we would get together for Thanksgiving at her house.  My favorite cake was yellow cake with her real chocolate icing and strawberries between the layers.  Oh my gosh this would make you wanna say hallelujah, praise the Lord and pass the biscuits or in this case, pass the chocolate cake.  .  Like I've said before since this is my story it's the way I remember it so what I remember is...she made that cake just for ME!!!!

Lesson today?  If you're lucky enough to still have your grandmother, take the time to go see her and make some memories.  What I would give to sit around that kitchen table again watching her make those tea cakes or to have one of those chocolate cakes only she could make.  One more Thanksgiving to look at old pictures and see her laughing at us.    Don't wake up tomorrow regretting that you didn't take time and the only thing you have left are memories.  Yes memories are wonderful but being hugged by your grandmother, well there ain't nothing like it.  I miss my Mama Highfield.

    Love to all,
    Sweet Southern Sass

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Things That I Lean On

"Psalm 23 when I'm scared to death.  A sleeping pill and my mind won't rest.  A little BB King when the thrill is gone.  These are the things that I lean on.  God's grace when I'm looking on a dangerous path.  12 steps when I need to find my way back.  My mama's voice on the telephone, these are the things that I lean on."  Wynonna Judd

This post was started back in August on the way to work after I learned heaven gained a new angel  when my dear Aunt had taken her final journey here on earth.  My uncle is a Christian man that probably turned to Psalm 23 for comfort more than one time over the past several years taking care of his sweet wife as her health declined.  But in the same sense I see her leaning on him as she was a tiny little thing and he was so big and strong.  Big and strong not only because of his stature but because of his faith and belief in God that  surely gave her more comfort than maybe he even knows.

My uncle has been gray headed as long as I can remember.  As a child I always thought anyone with gray hair was old but as I became older I realized having gray hair didn't make you old.  In my uncle's case it just made him distinguished looking that became a tired look over the years.   Reading the lyrics of this song I wonder what things he leaned on over these years and especially that last week.  I'm sure he thought many times of his mama and if he could hear her voice what comfort that would give him.  It probably wasn't a Conway song but something more like Amazing Grace or How Great Thou Art.  I doubt very seriously it was a sleeping pill to help his mind rest but a prayer that he certainly gained comfort from above. 

I'm sure during this time my uncles spirit was weak and his body breaking but he didn't stop.  He didn't need 12 steps and the devil didn't need to give him a talking to.  He had the shoulder of the man above to lean on and those shoulders are big enough to hold even my uncle so tall and strong.  God gave them many years of happiness here on earth. The days will be empty and the nights long but one day my uncle will take his journey home and they will walk hand in hand as one in heaven in the family of God.  Until then, he will be leaning on the everlasting arm of God's grace.

Lesson today?  What are the things you lean on?  Are you leaning on the things my uncle leans on or are you leaning on the pleasures of society?  Like I've said before I'm no bible scholar and don't claim to be but if you're leaning on things that would make the devil happy, maybe you need to take a look at Psalm 23 and hopefully it will help you find something better to lean on.  Something that will give you peace and a shoulder to lean on that will hold even the biggest of us.  A shoulder that will never turn away and arms that will give you comfort even in the hardest times.

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

We Are The World

"There  comes a time when we heed a certain call.  When the world must come together as one.  There are people dying and it's time to lend a hand to life, the greatest gift of all."   Michael Jackson
No need for an explanation as to why this song came to mind today.  I have no idea why this man started shooting at concert goers in Las Vegas, but WHY?  Why would he want to hurt innocent people?  People out to enjoy an evening of music with friends and family.  I'm sure we will never know the real reason but ya'll we need to come together.  Come together like the night of this shooting when people were dying and strangers were lending a hand to strangers.  
We can't go on pretending this world is not in complete and utter chaos.  We can't keep sitting back hoping that someone, somehow will soon make a change.  We are all God's big family, so we have to start with ourselves to make this world a better place.  Most people underestimate their ability to make a positive change in the world.  They're overwhelmed by the sheer number of things that need to be done, all the people that need help, and all the worthy causes that exist.  However, lots of individuals making small efforts can change the world.  I like what Edwin Osgood Grover says from The Book of Good Cheer.  "I am only one, but still I am one.  I cannot do everything, but still I can do something.  And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do."   Just imagine if we all did something, regardless of how small, to make this world a brighter place how much stronger lives would be.  
"As God has shown us by turning stones to bread, we all must lend a helping hand."  A helping hand like we have seen during the devastating hurricanes that have hit our people.  A helping hand like the strangers helping strangers during the shooting this week.  A helping hand like my friends grandson collecting socks for the Harvey & Irma hurricane survivors.  A helping hand to let those that are down and out and sees no hope that there are people who care.   We're all in this world together, we got to help complete the master's plan, stop looking on and complaining.  You know this world is unfair, but if everybody joins in the plan and lends a helping hand, we will break the hate one hand at a time.  It's right there for us all to see, it's as simple as can be, if we all stand together as one there is no way we can fall.  We are the ones to make a brighter day, so let's start today.

Lesson today?  Oh my gosh this one is simple as simple can be.  Be the light that brightens someone's day today.  Smile even if you don't feel like smiling, it might be the only one a person gets today.  Hold a door for someone, it might be the only act of kindness a person gets today.   Offer a listening ear or a shoulder to someone that might feel like no one cares, it might be the only time someone truly cares enough to listen.  Cook a meal or take food to someone in need, it might be the only hot meal they've had in a while.  I could go on and on about "lending a hand" but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out how you can help a person in need.  So go ahead...just do it and start giving.  We are the world, we are the ones to stand together as one and we can make this world a brighter place.  
  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Thursday, September 28, 2017

You Got To Stand For Something

"Now daddy didn't like trouble, but if it came along everyone that knew him knew which side that he'd be on.  He never was a hero or this county's shinin' light but you could always find him standing up for what he thought was right."  Aaron Tippin

Ok let's get this controversial topic started.  Ya'll keep in mind this is strictly MY opinion and it's not the gospel, so don't go and get all offended.  BUT...if you do, just carry on and delete me because this blog is NOT meant to offend anyone but if it does then so be it.

This first sentence said my daddy didn't like trouble.  I'm not real sure how true that was when he was younger but he certainly doesn't like it now.  Any hint that one of us kids is doing something we shouldn't or arguing amongst ourselves, he's on it.  I mean he can shake that finger at me even now that I'm an adult and I still stand up and pay attention.  This crap going on with the NFL right now, I can promise you if me or my brothers "took a knee" on the basketball court, baseball field or football field during the national anthem,  my daddy would march right out there and jerk us right up.  We might even be standing to eat (as he used to say) because we would probably get our butts torn up when we got home.

"You got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything.  Never compromise what's right and uphold your family name.  Whatever you do today you'll have to sleep with tonight."  I've always been the type to stand for what I believe.  One particular incident goes back long time when I was in high school.  A good friend of mine was killed in a car accident.  His funeral service was in the afternoon and might run into our basketball practice.   Being late to practice wasn't an option and if we were late, we had to run laps.  Well alrighty then, you would think a funeral would justify being late but it didn't.  We were like 10 minutes late and for every minute we ran a lap.  Dang I was so mad, and I paid the price with those stinking laps, but I stood for something I thought was right.

I know things are different now than they were in my daddy's younger days but I still believe what makes a man hasn't changed.  I am opinionated to a fault but I try hard to do what's right because it's what I believe and not because someone thinks it's what I'm suppose to do.  I've always beat to my own drum and nothing has ever surprised my mama at what I do.   My daddy always said to us you better not start anything but you better not let anyone run over you either.  I've never started a fight, but I think these words is what made me the little fiesty thing that I am.  I will argue to the end if I think I'm right and I've lost a few friends along the way because I spoke my mind.  But, that's OK.  I wasn't trying to change anyone's mind, I just believed one thing, they believed another and I wanted them to see my point of view.  Either way, I stood for what I believed.

My lesson today?  I believe I will go with a quote from Queen Latifah.  "It's not always easy to do the right thing.  But, doing the right thing makes you strong, it builds character, it forces you to make decisions based upon your beliefs and not what other people think.  In life, and in business, you have to stand for what you believe in and sometimes you have to stand alone.  But, what makes you a leader is having the courage of your convictions."  So go ahead, stand for something you believe, even if you have to stand alone.

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Heroes & Friends

"I ain't lived forever but I've lived enough and I've learned to be gentle and I've learned to be tough.  I've found only two things that last to the end.  One is your heroes and the other your friends."  Randy Travis

I heard this song on the way to work this morning and I thought if I were asked who are my heroes what I would say.  I'm sure you're expecting some celebrity or athlete but I'm thinking of two that are way bigger.  The first one is my mama.  Why?  It's simple, she's raised seven kids, made sure we all went to church, raised us in a Christian home, and she's worked her entire life.  Yes my daddy was there but mama seemed to always be the one in charge.  OK, ya'll know what I mean.  She's a strong woman that when she tells you something, you better pay attention.  I've never seen my mama take a day off or time to be sick until the last few years.  That's ONLY because she was in the hospital.  When she was better and we tried to get her to quit working or slow down, her response to us was "I'm not going to sit down and hold my hands, so ya'll need to just leave me alone."  Guess what?  we stopped trying to get her to slow down and we left her alone about it.

My other hero is my sister who was diagnosed with breast cancer about six years ago.  She went through her surgeries, reconstruction and all the other stuff and never complained that I know.   I never saw her cry and I never saw her feel sorry for herself.  I'm sure there were times when we weren't around all these things happened but she never let us know it.  Not even me, the one she calls every day.  She had several things that went wrong during the first year but she handled it all with dignity and grace, doing what she had to do to be strong and get through it.   I think sometimes what would I do if this happened to me.  I'm not sure what I would do but I know for a fact I wouldn't handle it like my sister did.  I would probably feel sorry for myself, get mad because it's happened to me and then throw a hissy fit just because that's how I am.

"Your heroes will help you find good in yourself. They'll stand beside you through thick and trough thin.  And that's how it goes with heroes and friends."   Yep, that's about right for these two heroes of mine.  My mama may not be as quick to find good in me because I am her hellion child, but I'm sure if someone asked her about me, she could come up with something.   My sister on the other hand, she would come up with something right away.  She would probably tell them I'm crazy, but then she would probably burst out  telling them just how crazy I am.  Maybe some day I will ask her what she would answer.  But then I may just leave it to my imagination, that way I can believe what I want.

Since this is about friends too, I have to tell ya'll about my friends that have definitely been with me through thick and thin,  I've talked about them before.  We call ourselves The Birds.  We have had other friends to try and join our tribe as they say but they never survived.  I'm not sure why, but I think probably because The Birds work at keeping our friendship strong and maybe they didn't try hard enough.   Our thoughts are you have to be a friend to have a friend.  We try to get together at least once a month and we try to do a weekend trip a couple times a year.  It is harder to get us all together now because we all have things going on, but again if we want the birds to be there in time of need, we have to be there when it's just for fun.  The phone rings both ways and the road goes both ways, and we all know that.  That's what makes our circle special.  We may not talk every day or heck even every week, but I can promise you these birds will be here for me through thick and thin.  Wait, what am I talking about, they already have stood beside me through thick and thin.

My lesson today?  Stop a minute and think who are your heroes and friends?  If I asked you this question would it be someone close to you or would it be that celebrity or athlete on TV.  Don't get me wrong I have those people I adore too, but are they really heroes?  Do they give of themselves like my mama and sister?  Are they part of a charity and give back to their community?  Do they stand for the national anthem?  Would they be there for you through thick and thin?  I don't know about ya'll but I don't have a personal relationship with any celebrity so I think probably calling them a hero would not be correct.  At least not for me.   If you're lucky enough to have friends like mine or heroes that have been strong, hold onto them.  Make sure you do what's necessary to keep them friends.  Be a friend so you can have a friend because that's how it goes with heroes and friends.

 Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Mama's Table

"We pull a chair up every night, eat and talk and joke and fight.  Us kids learned wrong from right at mama's table.  It was just some hickory wood and screws.  It's where my daddy read the news.  You didn't put your dirty shoes on mama's table."  The Oak Ridge Boys

With the recent hurricane hitting Georgia this song came to mind because I've stayed with my 86 year old daddy and 81 year old mama the last two nights.  My daddy actually sat at the table with my mama and me last night, eating by the lantern light.  As I sat there listening to them talk about the day without power I thought how blessed I am to still have them.  They crack me up bickering with each other but dang if I had been married to my daddy almost 65 years I would probably be bickering with him too.  This is probably only one of a few times I can count on my fingers daddy has actually eaten at the table.  Not because he doesn't like us, but we are so loud and all talking at once when we're all at the table, it makes him nervous.  Well that and because he doesn't eat enough to keep a bird alive.

Our table isn't hickory but my mama has had it for years.  "It has some faded spots and cracks.  A couple of burns from candle wax.  A memory in each scratch on mama's table."   I'm not sure if the marks on mama's table is from candle wax but I do know there are some white spots where someone (probably me) sat hot food on it.  There are a few cracks which I'm sure is because it's so old and the chairs are in need of repair but hey they still hold us up on Sunday's so I'm pretty sure she won't get new ones until someone falls.  That's just mama.  She's old school and doesn't get rid of anything unless it's absolutely necessary.

"It was the center of the best times I remember, sometimes the only thing that brought us all together."  We eat at my mama's every Sunday so there is always a story to tell.  There are so many of us it's hard for us all to eat at the table at the same time but the ones that get there first get the seats. So guess what?  I'm always the first one there.  (I'm sure this doesn't surprise ya'll)

 Remembering some of these times around this table, I think about making Christmas ornaments, cutting off corn to freeze, hats for the hat derby at my sister's church, Christmas dinners, and New Years Day dinner just to name a few.  I like for ya'll to close your eyes and imagine so if you want to close them right now and just imagine yourself sitting around this big ole table with kids making Christmas ornaments laughing and trying to  decide who has the best.  Of course each one thinks their ornament is the best and believe me my mama makes each one of them believe it too!  Imagine us girls cutting off that hundred ears of corn to freeze and see all the corn splatters all over us around that big ole table.  Yep, I can promise you we have more corn on us than in the bowl, but we're making memories and it's around mama's table.

One verse in this song says the table is "where my brother and I played games.  I just knew he'd gone insane the day he carved his name in mama's table."  I don't remember either of my brothers carving their name in mama's table but I can promise you if they had, they would have to stand up for a week (as my daddy says) because she would have "whooped" their butts.  LOL  However, we have played games around this table, my brothers included.  Probably because they made us because to hear the oldest brother tell it we didn't like him.  He might be somewhat right because my one sister did cry when they brought him home from the hospital.  She wanted another girl.  I mean what in the world was she thinking?  We already had four!!!  We needed a change.

One thing I know for sure about mama's table you always feel the love and one thing mama does NOT allow is arguing at the table.  Wait, what am I thinking, she doesn't allow arguing at all if we try it in front of her.   Yeah we all may be older and have our own families but let me tell you right now my mama still got the power to calm a room with just a few words.  I've heard "ya'll better not be arguing or I can still take the broom to you" as many times as an adult as I heard it growing up.  I never got the broom but my brother that claims we didn't like him, well he did.  Ya'll don't get all worked up she didn't beat him with it or anything she just whacked him across the butt.  She still threatens him with it but it would take a whole lot more than a whack for him to feel it now because he's about three times bigger than his little skinny butt back then.

Lesson today?  I think it might for ya'll to go make memories around your mama's table if you can. Don't put it off 'til tomorrow, tomorrow may never come.  Your memories may not be the same as mine but they don't have to be.  If you can't go to your mama's, just take a minute and remember being around your mama's table.  Remember what you enjoyed most around your mam's table and start your own memories at YOUR table.  Trust me your kids will appreciate it.  Maybe not now if they're young, but when they're my age, they will treasure the good times around mama's table.

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Thursday, August 31, 2017

On My Way

"I'm hard-headed, I'm stubborn.  I'm stuck in my ways.  Still learning what it means to heal my knees and pray.  But I'm on my way."   Nashville cast featuring Hayden Panettiere & Jonathan Jackson

Lord have mercy how did Nashville know who I am?  LOL  Anyone that knows me knows I'm hard-headed, stubborn and oh so stuck in my ways.  But is that really a bad thing?  I probably could get a little "unstuck" but that might mean not doing things my way and I like doing things my way.  Keep in mind my way may not always be the right way according to some, but the way I see it if I'm not hurting anyone or being disrespectful then I should be good to go with my way.

I'm sure my mama has thought many times I'm more trouble than I'm not.  But somebody has to keep her life interesting.  We all know it could be said I'm the only hell my mama ever raised, but I like to think that's not true.  I mean she does have six other childrens.   Mr. Webster says a hellion is a rowdy, mischievous, or trouble making person.  If I must fit myself in one of these categories it would probably be rowdy more than the others.  However, I have been know to be a little mischievous at times.  Oh crap what am I talking about I fit all three of them.  I'm a little mischievous when my rowdy friends come over and we cause a little trouble now and then butt....ya'll remember my statements before.  I'm not going to do anything that I have to wear orange or turn the lights out at a certain time.  Two reasons!!!  orange ain't my color and I like the lights to go out when I want too not because someone slams a door and yells "Lights out."  No, no, no, not for me!!!

Maybe Travis Tritt was talking about me when he wrote his song T-R-O-U-B-L-E.  Mercy look what just walked through that door. Well hello T-R-O-U-B-L-E.  Tell me what in the world you doin' A-L-O-N-E.  Well I smell T-R-O-U-B-L-E.   I think Mr. Travis means this kind of trouble in a good way, probably like me.   You know someone that causes a commotion just waking up in the morning.   It's definitely a commotion when I wake up, rolling myself out of bed because my back hurts or my knees don't work because of all those years on the basketball court. Hey, it's my story and I'm sticking to it.  Some mornings  I think a tow truck would work better but then I would have to pay for that.  LOL   Ya'll know that saying "be the kinda woman that when she wakes up in the morning the devil says oh crap, she's awake."    I bet the devil says that every morning I wake up, but what he don't know is I have someone bigger than him on my side.

"Ain't got it figured out.  Right now all I can say is I'm on my way."  I don't have this thing called life figured out but I do know that I've got it way more figured out than I did 20 years ago.  Twenty years ago I was married and thought it would last forever.  Well we all know that didn't work as planned and it took me LOTS of years to move on from that chapter but this book ain't finished yet.  I plan to live many more years and I plan to live them to the fullest.  It may not be the way others think I should but the one thing ya'll know about me is most of the time that doesn't stop me.  I may not have it figured out EXACTLY but I'm on my way.  I'm on my way to learning how to love again (that is if I ever find someone again) and I'm on my way to learning how to love myself.  (I mean what's not to love).  On my way, loving every step I take to being a better person.   Who knows, maybe one of these mornings I wake up I won't have to roll out of bed.  Maybe I'll just jump right up and yell...I'm awake and I feel good.  Oh Lord, another song just came to mind but I guess I'll stop here.  Well except for the lesson.

Lesson today?  I guess let's just go with if you're stuck and don't know what to do, don't give up.  Remember the saying if at first you don't succeed, try, try again.  Well come on people, giving up has never been an option for me so I don't want it to be one for ya'll either.  Keep on keeping on and don't put so much pressure on yourself that it has to be done over night.  Ya'll know Rome wasn't built in a night.  LOL.  Just take one day at a time and every morning when you wake up just say to yourself, it may not be today... but I'm on my way.

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Friday, August 25, 2017

The Dance

"Looking back on the memory of the dance we shared beneath the stars above.  For a moment all the world was right.  How could I have known you'd ever say goodbye.  And now I'm glad I didn't know the way it all would end, the way it all would go.  Our lives are better left to chance, I could have missed the pain but I'd have to miss the dance." - Garth Brooks

Alright, alright, alright this might be funny because I got in the wedding pictures this weekend from my marriage to the CHB.  I'm sorry but I can't tell ya'll what this stands for, but the people that know me, know what it means.  Don't fret to much, so did HE!!!  LOL

Looking at these pictures made me laugh because when we got divorced I cut him out of most of them.  Keep in mind we had about 300 pictures made so that was a whole lotta cuttin' going on.  I think I found two of him still in the pictures and that was because I needed something to remember how handsome he looked that day.  Yep, I said it...he was handsome as he could be in that black western tux and black cowboy hat.  At that moment "all the world was right."

"Holding you I held everything.  For a moment wasn't I the king.  But if I'd only known how the king would fall.  Hey who's to say you know I might have changed it all.  And now I'm glad I didn't know the way it all would end, the way it all would go."   I'm sure on this day he felt like the king.  I mean he was marrying me and I was a most beautiful bride.  I wonder if he knew how things would end if he would have changed anything.   Maybe I would have, but not on that wedding day because it was a beautiful day!

You always hear there are two sides of the story and of course, my story has two sides.  BUTT...since this is my story and he's "out of the picture" (get it) my side is all we will talk about.  I've been angry with him forever but around my birthday this year it was time to put that anger away.  We laughed, talked about old times and finally had closure to an unhappy ending. Yep, just like that, the cowboy rides away saying goodbye to yesterday.  The bottom line of the matter is it just didn't work and there is no reason to hold on to all that anger because it can make a heart cold and who wants a cold heart.  Not me!!!

Mr. Webster himself says left to chance means not trying to change the way something happens.  I guess that means if I'm to relate that meaning to the song I would say that this page in my life was better left to chance because being who I am, I would have tried to change the way it would end to miss the pain.  I would have missed the pain, but I  I would have missed the dance.  The dance full of fun and memories which are way better than the pain of it all.

Lesson today?   Marilyn  Monroe once said "I believe everything happens for a reason!  People change so you can learn to let go, things go wrong so that you can appreciate them when they're right.  Sometimes, good things fall apart so better things can fall together."   So go ahead...sit tall in the saddle, hold your head up high.  Keep your eyes fixed where the trail meets the sky, live like you ain't afraid and most importantly...LET IT GO!!!!

  Love to all,
  Sweet Southern Sass

Friday, August 18, 2017

Don't Blink

"I turned on the evening news, saw an old man being interviewed, turning a hundred and two today.  Asked him what's the secret to life.  He looked up from his old pipe, laughed and said..."all I can say is, don't blink."  Kenny Chesney

Ok let's get this party started.  :)  I thought about this song today since my daddy has been in the hospital the last couple of days.   It's like I blinked and he was 86 years old.

 I don't know when daddy got so old but I tell him all the time he's the oldest person I know.  Staying with him in the hospital we talked about his daddy (my grandpa) and he laughed like a kid at the stories he told.  He told a story about the preacher coming to grandpa's house and wanted some water.  Grandpa told him it was in the refrigerator.  The preacher came back and said he didn't know where that water came from but it sure was strong.  My grandmother almost fell out of her chair, the preacher had got holt of grandpa's moonshine. Come on ya'll, you know it was for medicinal purposes.  Daddy thought this was so funny and it made me giggle watching him laugh out loud talking about grandpa.  His face lit up like a fire talking about his mamma and daddy.  That my friends I love to see.

We got to watch a little TV and this is his take on everything.  The Braves (which ain't worth a flip half the time he says), the football games (kaepernick deserves what he got, not standing for the national anthem) and the news this morning (Is that channel 5, I don't like that blonde lady on channel 2 with that guy with the gap in is teeth).  Lord have mercy in case you don't know, he was talking about Kelly Rippa and Michael Strahan.  I told him Strahan was on GMA so he let me turn it over there.  Hell's bells, wouldn't you know it, Strahan wasn't on there today.  I thought you said he was on channel 2.  Well daddy I guess he's off today.

"Don't blink you just might miss your babies growing like mine did."  Daddy has seven kids and we all like to aggravate each other that we're his favorite.   We always say baby girl is his favorite and guess what?  I guess she is!!!  As I was getting his license out of his wallet for the nurse yesterday the ONLY picture he had was of baby girl in high school.  Bless his heart, she's 39 years old, he needs a new picture.  Better than that I need to give him one so I can be his favorite.  At least for a little bit, 'til baby girl gives him a new one.

"Wake up and you're twenty-five and your high school sweetheart becomes your wife."  Mama was 17 when her and daddy married so I think that makes his high school sweetheart his wife of 64 years. Daddy knew mama growing up and he tells stories about her all the time.  Again his face lights up just talking about her.  Now let me just say right here, they can say things about each other but boy hidey we better not say anything because we find out real quick who's in charge.  Speaking of being in charge.  I was first at the hospital the other day so guess what?  I got to be in charge for a whole minute.  LOL  actually it was about 30 minutes until mama got there.  Then it was over and again daddy laughed because I said that didn't last long me being in charge.  Then he had to tell the nurse all about his seven kids and mama.  He's a proud daddy!!!

"Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think."  In daddy's case 86 years have gone by way faster than I can believe.  It seems like yesterday he was coaching my brothers baseball teams and had a head full of black hair.  Now he's retired (FINALLY) and he's gray headed. But don't you guess you would be gray headed too if you raised seven kids?   Watching daddy sleeping last night I saw my baby boy (he's 38 but he'll always be my baby boy) sleeping 50 years from now.  Yep, mine is just like my daddy.  Tall, not big as a minute and a receding hair line just like daddy.  I guess if he's going to look like someone (besides me) it might as well be my daddy.  He was a handsome man in the day, looks good for his age and is a pretty smart man.

Lesson for today?  Surprise!!! I've got one!  Don't wake up one morning and wonder where time has gone.  Don't wake up with regrets.  Life is too short to be anything but happy so go ahead be crazy, be stupid, be silly, be weird, but for goodness sake "don't be boring, dress cute wherever you go.  Life is too short to blend in." - Paris Hilton

Love to all,
Sweet Southern Sass


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Back to God

"Oh have you looked around?  Have you heard the sound of Mama's cryin' or do you turn away when you see the face of the innocent dyin'?  In these darkest days are you not afraid that it's too late?"  Reba McEntire

Ok ya'll, let me just say right up front I am no bible scholar and I don't claim to be an expert on anything but with all the anger going on in this country, we gotta do something.  Some of you may not believe but I do and I think in these darkest days we gotta get down on our knees, beg, plead and keep on praying.

Turn on the news any given morning and you will see innocent lives being lost in the blink of an eye.  So many mama's crying, their child left and didn't return because of some senseless act of violence, someone not paying attention, or just simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Of course there are accidents that are beyond anyone's control but these acts of violence just make me so angry.  Why in the world can't we all just get along?  Just love each other and treat everyone with respect.
The song I learned at a very early age Jesus loves the little children.  All the children of the world.  Red and yellow, black and white they are precious in his sight.  It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure this one out he loves us ALL so people need to stop with the hatred!!!

"What the world needs now is love, sweet love.  IT's the only thing that there's just too little of.  What the world needs now is love, sweet love.  No not just for some but for EVERYONE!"  Jackie DeShannon

I wonder what it would be like if all the world knew was love for each other.  Like the song says, not just some but for everyone.  Don't you think there would be less killings, less broken families  and less children being harmed or abandoned?

Lesson today?  Let's just love each other.  Love each other more unconditionally, without judgement, and don't try to change the person for your own purposes.  Accepting love is patient and kind, even when someone does not meet your expectations.  I just heard on the radio to take pictures of loved ones because we never know when they may not return home.  This seems a little harsh, but it's oh so true.  Now let's go out and spread the love.

 Love to ALL,
  Sweet Southern Sass


Thursday, August 10, 2017

3, 6, 9 The Goose Drank Wine

Three, six, nine the goose drank wine.  The monkey chewed tobacco on the street car line.  The line broke, the monkey got choked and they all went to heaven in a little rowboat.   Shirley Ellis

Are you laughing yet?  If you vision this poor monkey on a street car, chewing tobacco it's comical to say the least.  This song got stuck in my head on the way to work this morning.  Needless to say I googled it right up and thought...OK, let's make my sassy followers laugh.

I posted this song on a friends FB page several years back.  Keep in mind he was a lot younger than me and had never heard it.  He called me up and his exact words were "where the hell did you get that song."  LOL.  I said, you've never heard it before?  Of course not goofy girl, I'm not 60 years old.  Later that afternoon he called back to say that song had been stuck in his head ALL day and he couldn't quit singing it.  That's what he gets for making fun of me.

Clap, pat, clap your hand, pat it on your partner's hand, right hand.  Pat your partner's left palm.  Pat your partner's right palm with your right palm again.  Clap, slap, clap your hand, slap your thighs and sing a little song.  We sure are doing a lot of slapping & clapping but can't you just see a bunch of people jumping around, slapping hands and singing this song?  I can and I probably will when I read this out loud and listen to the song again.   No, I haven't officially lost my mind, just having a little fun today.

I am a little curious, if the monkey gets choked and the street car breaks, how is he going to heaven in a little rowboat?   All the pictures I see of heaven, it's in the sky, so if a rowboat needs water how is that going to happen?  OK ya'll I'm being silly today but maybe you will think about it and giggle a little bit.

Lesson today?  For sure I don't know but since this is a short, silly little post don't hold back! Get up, slap around, dance like no one is watching and let me know if you figure out how that monkey's getting to heaven in a rowboat.

Sweet Southern Sass

Monday, August 7, 2017

You Find Out Who Your Friends Are

"You find out who your friends are.  Somebody's gonna drop everything, run out and crank up their car, hit the gas, get there fast.  Never stop to think "what's in it for me?" or "it's way too far."  They just show on up with that big old heart.  You find out who your friends are."   Tracy Lawrence

This thought came to mind after watching the movie Going In Style with Morgan Freeman.  Oh my gosh within five minutes I was laughing so hard my stomach hurt.   Lifelong buddies Willie, Joe and Albert play brittle old fogies who team up to rob a bank.  They were sick of sitting on the same bench in the same park every day, talking about the same things and feeding the same pigeons.  They wanted to feel young and alive once more and if they got caught, who cares?  They were probably  going to die soon anyway.

Joe comes up with the idea and convinces the other two they can do it.  Now this reminds me of someone I knew years ago who always said one of my friends at the time was why I stayed in trouble.  Well hell's bells, anyone that knows me knows I don't need anyone to "make" me do anything.  As a favorite song of mine says...Lead me not into temptation I already know the road all too well, lead me not into temptation I can find it all by myself.  I have to admit, most of the time, it was HER idea but rest her soul, she didn't have to twist my arm very hard.   I lost this friend several years ago but watching this movie made me think about her.  Not really sure why but probably because the shenanigans these three pulled reminded me of a few we did.  NO we didn't rob a bank but we probably thought about it a time or two when we were broke as Dick's hat band as they say.

The different personalities is what made this movie so funny to me.  Joe is the group's ringleader and reacts with a witty cold anger that is only heightened by age, Albert is the most hopeless until he gets caught up in a senior-citizen fairy tale romance with Annie  and Willie is the most mellow but only because he's in need of the kidney transplant.   These three scoundrels may have been different in every way but they had one thing in common and that was their friendship.  A friendship that would stand the tests of time and last forever.   A friendship that wouldn't stop short of anything to reunite them with their families and better their lives, even if it meant robbing a bank.  I'm pretty sure if I came up with an idea of robbing a bank my friends would seriously think I had FINALLY lost it.  I tell them all the time orange is NOT my favorite color and I like to turn the lights out when I want to so hopefully they will remember and put their foot down.  I do hope however if I need a kidney one of them wouldn't have to think about it but be right there saying.."Let's get this party started."

My lesson today?  Lord have mercy I might have to think a minute but let's go with the fact that nothing is impossible and you can better your life if you want to. Don't rob a bank, but motivate yourself to jump over any obstacle in your way and complete any task needed to live the best life you can.  Chase after your dreams, no matter how old you are.  And by all means, see this movie.  It might just make you laugh and we all can use a laugh now and then.

      LOVE TO ALL,
     Sweet Southern Sass

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Unanswered Prayers

"Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers.  Remember when you're talkin' to the man upstairs that just because he doesn't answer doesn't mean he don't care.  Some of God's greatest gifts are unanswered prayers."  Garth Brooks

Somehow my posts seem to always include "the man up above."  well this one ain't gonna be any different.  Think about the words of this song for a minute, have you ever wanted something so bad you couldn't think about anything else?  Of course we all have and I'm no different.  But when I read the first verse of this song and it's talking about an old flame, it takes me back a few years.  Well more like 30 years.  I had this "old flame", he was the one that I'd wanted for all times.  And each night I'd spend prayin' that God would make him mine.  If only he would grant me this wish I'd never ask for anything again.

First off, I'm sure God was laughing out loud when I said I'd never ask for anything again.  I'm sure he knew I was already thinking about the next thing I was going to ask for.  But hey, I thought that's what I'm suppose to do when  you want something so bad.   Thank goodness he knew that "old flame" wasn't what I needed and thankfully he did not answer that prayer I prayed so many times.  Unanswered prayers?  Maybe, maybe not but we didn't stay together and it's another time I'm glad God was in control and knew what was best.

Sometimes when I pray and I don't get the answer  right away, I am so quick to ask why?  Why Lord are you not answering my prayers?   Are they just hitting the ceiling and bouncing right back to the floor?  With this being said sometimes I don't understand but I've learned in my not so many years (LOL) that his way is God's way, not mine.

I can go on and on about what I think might have been unanswered prayers, but what I really think right here is that they were answered in the way God thought I needed, not my way.  Maybe I was asking for the wrong thing.  Maybe I was being selfish, thinking only of myself and not someone that needed prayer way more than me.  Maybe it wasn't God's time to give me what I wanted or maybe he knew something better was to come.  Either way, I'm glad I trust in the man above that he knows what's best.

Lesson today?  It's simple.  Yep, it's simple today.  If  you're fighting a battle of fear and you feel he's not listening, just hold on...He may be late but he's always on time.  I know, HE knows what he's doing and I know some of God's greatest gifts are all too often unanswered...because he knows what he's doing.  All the time he knows what he is doing.

Sweet Southern Sass

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Wine Into Water

"You've heard a multitude of prayers on my behalf.  I pray one more is not too much to ask.  I've tried to fight this battle by myself but it's a war that I can't win without your help."  T. Graham Brown

This one I promise will be some deep thoughts.  Luckily I've not struggled with a true addiction like alcohol  but I do have friends that have.   One particular lady I worked with years ago is who comes to mind right here.  She lost her family, her job and eventually her life.  For the life of me I couldn't figure it out.  She was the most "put together" lady I had ever met and could work circles around me, even on her worse day.  She did not drink when I first went to work with her but for whatever reason she became unhappy with her life and started.   She fought the battle by herself along with many of her friends, but she just couldn't win the war and eventually lost the the will to fight.

"So many times I've hurt the ones I love, I pushed them to the edge of giving up.  They've stood by me but how much can they stand if I don't put this bottle in your hands?"  Other friends have struggled with alcohol and others struggling with drug addiction have pushed their loved ones to the edge but we don't give up.  We don't give up praying God will take the need for whatever drug of choice it is and we don't give up loving them.  I've been called more times than I can think because a friend needed someone to talk to just because they were standing on the edge of giving up.  The worse thing a friend can do it give up on the hope that God will heal their addiction.

"I shook my fist at heaven for all the hell that I've been through.  Now I'm begging for forgiveness and a miracle from you 'cause tonight I'm as low as any man can go.  I'm down and I can't fall much further.  Now on my knees I'm turning to you Father could you help me turn the wine back into water?"  If you're fighting these demons and you're down as far as you can go, begging for forgiveness and a miracle, my prayer for you is God will hear your prayer and turn your wine into water.  I pray there is a friend that's been there for you more times than you can count, will hear your cry once again and run as fast as they can to be there for you.  I pray their hand of comfort can pull you from the edge of giving up and I pray God will turn your wine into water.

My lesson today?  Don't wait until the situation is really bad ~ reach out for help NOW!!!  If you have been thinking that you can handle it or it will get better and it hasn't.  Reach out TODAY before things become worse.  Call that friend that's always been there.  I would be willing to bet he/she would be there again because they love you.  Let them help you turn the wine to water.

    Love to all,
    Sweet Southern Sass


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Jesus Take the Wheel

"Jesus take the wheel, take it from my hands, 'cause I can't do this on my own.  I'm letting go so give me one more chance and save me from this road I'm on.  Jesus, take the wheel."  Carrie Underwood

WOW, what powerful words and where do I go with this one?   I'm not sure, but ya'll know I will give it my best shot.  This song starts with a mama going home to see her mama and daddy with a baby in the backseat.  "It had been a long hard year, she had way too much on her mind, and she didn't pay attention."  She was going way to fast when she started to skid on ice.  No time to cry she throws her hand in the air and says the words "Jesus take the wheel."

This scenario reminds me so much of my young single mother days.  So many times going to see my mama and daddy with the baby in the back seat.  Even though they only lived down the road a bit, an accident could have easily happened.  What this brings to mind for me is how careless I was during those days.  How many weekends I would leave my small child with my mama and daddy or sister or the neighbor next door.  So many weekends that I can never get back of his life.  So many things I missed because I was too busy living MY life and not taking responsibility for his.  Thinking about this now that he will be 38 years old in a few weeks, I know Jesus had the wheel all those years.  He gave me more than one chance to save me from the road I was on and thankfully that road only lasted a few years.

"She saw both their lives flash before her eyes, she didn't even have time to cry.  She was so scared she threw her hands up in the air."  Luckily and I mean ever so lucky I never had this to happen on my road to self destruction.  I never came close to an accident but only because I know Jesus had the wheel.  The wheel that would keep me safe during my crazy years and the wheel that kept me safe from an abusive relationship or two.   Maybe my mama had a hand on that wheel too because she was the one that finally said enough was enough.  She said I was a mama and I needed to act like one.  Ya'll know there was a lot more in that statement from my mama, but ya'll get the idea.

"She's a rock, she is grace.  She's an angel, she's my heart and soul.  She does it all." I hear people saying I'm starting to look like my mother does.   She sees everybody for who they really are.  I'm so thankful for her guidance.  She helped me get this far."    Lauren Alaina

My mama truly is a rock, an angel, my heart and soul.  I am so thankful for her guidance and that she had the wheel all those years ago when I didn't have sense to "act right."  I am thankful she was there holding that wheel steadfast while I went on my way to make more mistakes than I can count on both hands and feet.  There with her head bowed I'm sure asking Jesus to take the wheel.  The wheel to save me before it was too late.

Lesson today?  Don't take too long to ask Jesus to take the wheel.  Don't tarry on that road to self destruction because you might not be as lucky as me.  Hopefully if you're on that road, your mama is a praying mama and she's got her head bowed every night that Jesus take the wheel to bring you back.  Wake up before your hands are in the air, you're scared to death and maybe no time.

  Love to all,
Sweet Southern Sass

Friday, July 7, 2017

Life Ain't Always Beautiful

"Life ain't always beautiful.  Sometimes it's just plain hard.  Life can knock you down.  It can break your heart."  Gary Allen

How many times I have thought these exact words.  I can't think of any particular time right this minute, but I do believe that life ain't always beautiful and sometimes it's just plain hard.  I've been knocked down a time or two and my heart has been broken in a million pieces more than once.  But as the saying goes, you gotta put on your big girl panties and deal with it.  You can't let life knock you down and not get back up.   They say everything happens for a reason.  Well there have been things I've tried to figure out the reason and sometimes I can't figure it out so "what the hell", I just "let it go" and move on.  Yep, just sing the song with me now.  Let it go, let it go.  Yes you get it now.  Let it go...let it go...

"But the struggles make you stronger and the changes make you wise and happiness has it's own way of taking it's own sweet time."  I'm not 100% sure my struggles have made me stronger but I can say the changes that I had to make certainly made me wiser.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.  LOL  and yes, Lord yes happiness has taken it's own sweet time arriving at my door, but praise the Lord it finally found me.  No, not because I found a boyfriend or husband or heck even a significant other, but simply because I chose to be happy.  Some days are harder, but being happy feels better to me than being sad.  

Some days I miss your smile, I get tired of walking all these lonely miles and I wish for just one minute that I could see your face.  Guess I can dream but life don't work that way.
What I would give to see my Aunt Dot, my friend Andrew and many more people that have already found their wings and left this world.  But life ain't always beautiful and God didn't give me a stairway to heaven for when I need to visit or a phone to call when I need to hear a familiar voice on the other end.  So I can keep walking these miles here on earth and one day I will see all my friends and family and Oh what a beautiful ride it will be.   

No, life ain't always beautiful but I know I'll be fine.  Life ain't always beautiful but it's a beautiful ride.  What a beautiful ride.

Lesson today?  Life ain't always beautiful, but you can make it beautiful if you want.  Take the first step when you wake up in the morning and say, OK, today's going to be amazing.  Whatever other ridiculousness happened yesterday, well, that was then.  Today only happens once and by golly I declare it's going to be a good one.  And always remember:  "EVERY morning we are born again.  What we do today is what matters most."  So go ahead...Make it a beautiful day!!!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

You Can't Make Old Friends

What will I do when you are gone?  Who's gonna tell me the truth?  Who's gonna finish the stories I start the way you always do? - Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers

Ya'll better buckle up for this one, it's gonna be one to hopefully make you laugh out loud.  Ya'll know I love that kinda laugh.  The one that comes from your toes and you can't stop.  

This weekend was a girls weekend and Lord have mercy it was one for the books.  One that kept us all laughing and only one that cried.  Yeah, not me this time.  But the one that cried (my opinion) just needed her eyes washed.  I mean there is something blooming somewhere.  LOL.  

There are six of us in our group we call The Birds.  Yep, I guess you can figure that one out.  We're a flock of birds that four of us have been friends almost 40 years.  The other two birds, not really sure how many years we've been friends, but I just like to say we're all friends and the years doesn't really matter.  These ladies are the ones that gonna tell me the truth, finish my story, tell me how bad I look but most importantly how beautiful they think I am even if I don't believe it myself.  (which is usually most of the time.)  

"How will I sing when you are gone 'cause it won't sound the same.  Who will join in on those harmony parts when I call your name?"  None of us can "carry a tune in a bucket" except Mrs. Bling and she loves to sing.  Me on the other hand use to be able to sing anything I wanted but dear old age with it's menopause and crap has settled in and I truly can't carry a tune in a bucket.  SUCKS!!!  BUTT...that doesn't stop me from trying to sing a little harmony when Mrs. Bling needs help.  OK, I know it's only in MY mind she needs some help.  But on occasion she has asked me to sing a little doo whop back up.  Surely ya'll getting the picture by now.  It ain't pretty or should I say it doesn't sound pretty.   

"When somebody knocks at the door, someone new walks in I will smile and shake their hands but you can't make old friends."  Trust me there have been others who have tried to fly with this flock but for whatever reason couldn't quite get off the ground.  I'm sure there was a good reason but I'm thinking it's just as simple as Dolly and Kenny's song says.  "You can't make old friends."  Old friends that gonna hold my hand if I'm scared, old friends that's gonna build me up when I'm down, old friends that will give me a hug just because. Old friends that simply 'gonna be there because the "show must go on."  

There will come a day when St. Peter will open the gate and we will fly away from this flock of friends.  But one thing I know for sure, whoever goes first will be waiting on the rest.  Waiting on their friends who will be young again, waiting on their friends with open arms 'cause we all know, you can't make old friends.

Lesson today?  Heck, let's just run with something to make you laugh.  Don't worry about how many facebook friends you have (you probably don't know half of them any way), hold on to your old friends, hold them tight every chance you get and tell them you love them.  Go have lunch with them or better yet if you're lucky enough, have a weekend like we just did. 

Love to all,
Sweet Southern Sass