I couldn't wait for last Thursday to get here so I could go birding with Karen Franklin and her children, Anna and Nick. First off, we had lunch at Demos Steak House to whet our appetites before going on our planned journey, to visit the Old Hickory Lake area. It's much better birding on a full stomach, especially when it was lasagna and a salad.
We headed out to the Spencer Creek boat ramp in hopes of locating some wading birds. There were no fishing tournement going on to hinder access to the waters edge, this week, but there was hardly anything stiring in the air either. At Tyree's access we found a small raft of Mallards out toward the middle of the lake, and a couple of Common Loons. Vultures had made quick work of an expired dog which left little but dried skin and bones. Karen had a hard time trying to keep Anna from performing an autopsy on the remains of the deceased animal. It looks like that is a favorite dumping ground for someones dead animals, that are too lazy to use a shovel in their own yard.
Wilson Post Blogs
I was very honored today to be able to attend Wilson County Habitat for Humanity's Houses of Hope Luncheon as both a reporter for The Wilson Post and a guest of my friend Romel McMurry.
Romel was gracious enough to let me sit at his table with guest speaker, Voice of the Tennessee Titan Mike Keith. Mike is just a super nice guy! He told the audience all about his experiences volunteering on a Habitat Build in 1998 - and said he has continued to do what he can for the organization since - whether it be picking up a hammer or just lending his celebrity to the cause, as he did today.
I had met Mr. Keith about a year ago when the Titans Caravan visited Carroll Oakland School in Lebanon - so today I walked up to him and gave my typical "Hey, I interviewed you before" speech - and to my surprise he remembered me. He said yes, I met you last year during the Titans Caravan - which was cool and says a lot about his character.
Most people who are interviewed as much as Mr. Keith would not remember one single interview, but he did and I thought that was really nice. Every encounter I have had with a member of the Tennessee Titans organization has been great. It just goes to show that Tennessee really does have the BEST people. At least, that is my opinion :)
Congratulations to the award recipients today and thank you to Habitat for all they are doing to help dreams come true for folks here in Wilson County!
The full article and event photos will be in Friday's Wilson Post.
Also, be sure to check out photos in "Sabrina out on the Town" in the May/June issue of Wilson Living Magazine.
He always pronounced it Ahhpreel. Then, he would smile and spit for emphasis. He told me one time, “Boy, in da munt of Ahhpreel, you can do mose anyting.”
He always had snuff juice in the corners of his mouth and a twinkle in his eyes. He dipped Tuberose snuff and often drank Old Crow, sometimes, at the same time. I reckon he was close on to 80 when I first met him.
They opened the Augusta National Golf Course gates early Monday morning, as patrons ushered in the first day of practice rounds.
By all accounts, this year promises to be one of the most sought after Masters badges ever.
Hope you all got out and enjoyed this beautiful weekend, which seemed to be a preview of weather to come. There will be a chance of rain during the week, but the temperatures will remain in the 70's. Remember that we have to go through what us old timers call the spring winters. First off is Red bud winter, followed by Dogwood winter, then Locust winter, and finally Blackberry winter. Sometimes a cool spell after all that is called Cotton Britches winter. Some of these old sayings may die off if not for us older ones remembering the past. Good fishing ties in with some of those seasons, just ask John Sloan, our resident hunting and fishing expert.
I would like you to mark your calenders for May 3rd and 4th, which will be my bird and owl programs at the Cedars of Lebanon State Park. Friday night is a time to get together with many of the people who will be doing programs and chewing the fat. Saturday morning will kick off with Birds and more Birds, I hope at 7:00am which should have many of our migratory birds coming through on their way to their breeding grounds up north. The Owls will begin just before dark and I am in hopes of being able to call at least two species of owls like we did last year, the Screech and Barred Owls. It seems that Wayne "Buddy" Ingram is under the weather and not feeling his best, but I'm praying that he gets on his feet soon and pulls off another successful annual program like in the past.
My alarm was set for 7:00 this Good Friday morning and when my feet hit the floor, it was time to take a peak out the window to watch the rising sun. Where was the sun? I thought it was playing a bad trick on me because I had not watched the weather on television last night before climbing under the sheets. My birding trip with Karen Franklin and her children, Anna and Nick, was in serious jeopardy. A few minutes later Karen called with the dreaded news that I should pull up the radar image from News Channel 5 online. I know for a fact that Anna was not going to be a happy camper, especially since there was no school today and she was looking forward to learning a few more bird calls. She is really into birds, while her brother Nick would rather go fishing or something more "worth while" for a young lad to do.
Later in the day, I received a phone call from Bob Archer telling me that the White Pelicans were swimming around in Spencer Creek at the boat launching area and were headed north from there. After a few minutes, my old car was headed in that direction down Coles Ferry Pike hoping to see what everybody and their cousin was telling me about. Of course when I arrived there, there were no Pelicans, but plenty of Ring-billed Gulls, a couple of Great Blue Herons, and even farther out a pair of Common Loons taking were a swim in the cold water.
Sitting outside just watching the birds after filling all my feeders, the Carolina Chickadee was going in and out of it's nesting box, then all at once it give out it's alarm call. I thought he might be fussing at me until a Coopers Hark came in at full throttle and disappeared behind my small out building. Curiosity got the best of me and I walked around the corner to see what he had grabbed, fearing for my little ones safety. There was a dead Common Grackle that had been dead for a few days after flying into a window at the house to the north, which the Hawk, probably with a head cold and couldn't smell the dead bird, pounced upon his prize and flew off with it in tow. There have been times that I have watched Hawks eat road kill before it got too ripe, so any meal must be a good meal.
While doing my bird seminar a couple of weeks ago at Garrs, I was presented a bird painting from Roy Garr of the Barred Owl on an old piece of barn wood. I already have this hanging on my living room wall. These wildlife works of art were painted by Mr. Bob Sullivan, who has several for sale at Garrs Rental and Feed.
Wet on my face, little drops on my rod and line. A thick fog, the kind you can smell and taste. The kind my father called phawg. Of course, he also called the Texas Panhandle, the Texas Pothook.
The skeletal trees still standing in the warm water, kept weaving in and out of sight as they hid behind the moving, sometimes roiling blankets of thick mist. Of course, that is all fog is, mist. I once tried to catch a handful of it and mist. It can be spooky, fog. I kinda like it at times.
When Louisville guard Kevin Ware jumped in an attempt to block or alter a 3-point shot by Duke’s Tyler Thornton, he had no sense of what would happen.
Ware came down awkwardly on the floor without making any contact with Thornton, but there was a sickening sound as his leg snapped in two places right in front of Louisville’s bench.
As a proud graduate of Cumberland University, I have to promote my former professor's new play!
Dr. Michael Rex will be debuting his new play "Nice Girls Don't: A Romantic Comedy of Mistaken Identity" at Lakewood Theatre Company in Old Hickory, TN on April 19. Dr. Rex is a talented playwright and wonderful teacher.
I encourage any of you who enjoy the theatre to go see it. Here is the scoop:
Lakewood Theatre Company in Old Hickory, TN, proudly announces the World Premier of Nice Girls Don’t: A Romantic Comedy of Mistaken Identity. Produced in cooperation with Metro Nashville Arts Commission. 19 April – 5 May 2013 28 April performance will be sign interpreted for the deaf & hard of hearing.
What happens when the person you fall in love with isn’t who they claim to be? And what if the person you are not supposed to fall in love with turns out to be your soul-mate? Getting what you want rather than what you need is hard.But also really funny.
Written by local playwright, Michael Rex – professor of English & Creative Writing at Cumberland University, Nice Girls Don’t stars Treg Miles and Jennifer Bennett and is directed by Barbara S. Hartman making her Nashville directorial debut. Hartman built a reputation for directing original plays in Houston, TX before relocating to Nashville in 2011.
Nice Girls Don’t runs 19 April -5 May – Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 2:30.
Tickets available at www.ticketsnashville.com or Reservations at 615.847.0934. Lakewood Theatre is located at 2211 Old Hickory Blvd.
Cold and dreary. Just coming daylight and the woods filled with booming gobbles. This was going to be easy. I looked at Toby and he nodded. Gary Holmes, tapped my arm and pointed to the now lightening, east. “Just over that ridge.” He whispered. “Camera light soon.”
So opened turkey season in Missouri years ago.
I don’t know about you, but this NCAA Tournament has been one of the more whacked out, unpredictable tournaments in recent years.
Everyone looks for 12-seeds to upset 5-seeds. We saw three of the four 12-seeds advancing.
By BECKY ANDREWS
Wilson Living Magazine
Besides religion, politics and sex there’s one more hot button issue that should be added to that list of taboo topics never discussed in mixed company. Not war. Not equal pay. Not even the latest shocking elimination on “Dancing with the Stars.” Nope, it’s breastfeeding. I understand that because this word actually includes part of the female anatomy some would argue it falls under the “sex” category, but trust me, it’s shouldn’t.
When my oldest child was born, I had every intention of doing things the “right” way. No television, strict feeding and sleeping schedule, classical music piped in the nursery daily, cloth diapers and because all the books and medical research proved that breastfeeding would make my little genius even smarter and healthier, I would breastfeed for at least a year. After six months and six brand new razor sharp teeth emerged, I decided to quit.
A few weeks later I was out to lunch with a friend when a lady approached asking the standard questions, “How old is he? Is he crawling? Eating solids?” And out of left field, “Are you breastfeeding?” I explained that I did for “SIX WHOLE MONTHS!” With a disappointed look, she introduced herself as a member of La Leche and went on to explain how much smarter my child would have been had I continued to breastfeed. Now because of my selfishness he would probably be overweight as an adult and struggle with low self-esteem. I was crippled with fear.
Shortly after this incident, my little guy was diagnosed with an ear infection. When my dad found out, he insisted that if I’d continued breastfeeding his grandson wouldn’t be sick. He went on and on about how it was so good for the baby and how my mother enjoyed every minute of it and blah, blah, blah. When my mother explained to him that unless you possess a uterus, you have ZERO credibility in this matter, he let it go.
Four years later my youngest joined the family. I decided that nothing would stop me from breastfeeding for at least a year. I was going to prove to myself, La Leche and everyone else that I could be a weapon of mass lactation. As most of you know, when that second or third child comes along your “plans” change. Two weeks after he was born, I stopped breastfeeding.
For the next three months, when we were out at the grocery or any public place, I was prepared for strangers to ask a question whose answer would reveal my status as an unfit mother.
At his next well-baby visit my pediatrician went over all the usual items; weight, length, where he ranked compared to other babies, etc. Then she asked if he was taking a bottle or breast. That was it! I don’t care how many degrees she had, she wasn’t going to bully me into feeling bad.
“No, I’m not breastfeeding. It’s not for me. And, yes I know that this means he won’t be as smart as his peers. What is so wrong with being average? My mom breastfeed all six of my brothers and sisters for two years, and my younger brother never finished college. And so what if he’s overweight as an adult, who isn’t in America? Not that it’s any of your business, but I can bond just as well by feeding him a bottle. He coos just as much as his big brother did at this age. I also know I’d probably lose all this baby weight faster, whatever! I am so sick of people asking me about this. I’d feel more comfortable telling you who I was going to vote for in the next presidential election.”
The doctor made a quick note in the chart, looked up with a smile and said, “So… Who ARE you voting for?”
What a beautiful morning to wake up to, sun shining and the birds singing so loud that you can almost touch them. After a JD's sausage, egg and biscuit, freshly prepared from the microwave, it's time for a little exercise. I left the kitchen window open so that a fresh warm breeze could flow through. The next 20 minutes was spent trying to corner my pair of Carolina Wrens that wanted to check out the inside of my home. Birds seldom notice a pane of glass, which to them doesn't look like anything at all. After several futile attempts of bouncing off the glass, they decide to go exploring in each and every room of the house. With me hot on their heels (I'm not sure that birds have heels) the Wrens finally completed their circumnavigation of the house and zipped out the now wide open kitchen window. As soon as they reached freedom, I could hear them singing their "Teakettle, teakettle, teakettle" song, probably in defiance of me not being able to catch them. You just have to love these little clowns. I could kick myself for not grabbing my camera as one of them actually landed on a model airplane sitting on top of my upright freezer.
Anthony Gray came over this past Saturday morning in response to my pleas on his Facebook page. I needed help pouring a concrete base for my newest adventure, another Purple Martin house, from Garr's that I bought when I was doing my seminar last week. There was no way that I could have done this by myself. Digging the hole was accomplished with the help of my little friend from next door, Andrew Boyd. His mother Ashley lets him come over so he loves to help me.
It's just around the corner. Spring, can't you feel just a touch of fever, the kind that makes you want to get a little dirt underneath your fingernails? This is my favorite time of the year. Time for planting flowers, tomatoes, or if you have a true touch of southern in you, "’maters." Whatever you want to call them is alright with me.
We had a grand old time at Garr's in Mt.Julietthis past Saturday at my Bluebird seminar with a large crowd of people in attendance eager to start attracting these beautiful birds to their backyards. My good friend Carole Young marked her 3rd time to hear my talks, and of course, Karen Franklin came by for my first program. Many thanks to Karen's daughter Anna for sending me two boxes of Thin Mints Girl Scout Cookies.
They said it would rain. It did rain.
They said it would be windy. It was windy.
They did not say one word about it being dead calm some of the time and the rain ending and it getting almost warm toward hot. It did that. I have never much trusted weather forecasters. They are bad to lie.
How long has it been since Middle Tennessee State’s men’s basketball team played in the NCAA Tournament?
So long that current Blue Raider Kerry Hammonds Jr.’s father was on the last MTSU team to make the tournament field.
By ANGEL KANE
Wilson Living Magazine
I consider myself a pretty patient person. So patient, in fact, that one of my claims to fame are my outstanding blood pressure numbers.
They are incredibly low. Low enough that medical professionals sometimes find it concerning. I just smile and inform them, “Oh no, that’s just normal for me.”
But, I’m pretty certain that if I were to run by Walgreens this morning and stick my arm in that cuff, SIRENS WOULD GO OFF! (And men in white jackets would come cart me away!)
As I write this today, Brody and my three children are begging me not to tell you about the subject, or should I say subjects that have basically ruined my life.
But I have reached my limit!
It all started so innocently as I perused Pinterest and came upon the most lovely of all pantries. It was a walk in, with shelving, and on each shelf the food products were laid out; first all the tin cans, then the baking products, then the cereals and so on.
It was so ordered, so organized, so OCD, that it literally spoke to me. (Yes, I know, my family has the men in white jackets on speed dial.)
Three weeks later, I converted one of the small rooms off our kitchen into a walk in pantry. I had shelves put in and then spent an entire Saturday moving the food into the pantry, lining everything up, labeling tins, putting like food groups with like food groups …it was my own, personal heaven-on-earth.
One week later, I reached for a bag of flour and the bottom fell out!
Flour went everywhere. I was covered, my tins were covered, my walls were covered, my pretty multi-colored floor mat was covered, and as I reached down to look at the mess, I noticed the bite marks on the bag and the little black specks of…………..AGGGHHH!!!
When I’m 65 years old, and go in for my first MRI - I’m quite certain the Doctor will ask me, “Mrs. Kane it appears you’ve had a stroke sometime in your past, can you recall when that may have happened?”
And I’m going to know EXACTLY when it happened!
You see my friends, we have RATS. A word Brody can’t quite commit to.
“Would you please stop calling them rats, they are field mice. And stop telling everyone about them.”
It appears I’m not the only one who coveted my pantry. Apparently a friendly field mouse also thought it was smoking hot, so he told all the other field mice in town about it, who are now having a convention in my pantry.
Since that fateful day, I have been purging, cleaning, scrubbing, bleaching, re-bleaching, screaming, yelling, googling…fighting an all-out losing battle…against field mice.
Most evenings as Brody walks by the pantry and sees me crazed, on hands and knees, checking my traps, he says in a quiet voice …so as not to antagonize…”Field mice just come in when it’s cold. They leave in the spring. I think you’re going overboard.”
“Overboard. Overboard? Google Haute Virus or the Plague! And by the way, these are RATS…if you say the word field mice one more time, I’m going to lose my mind!” (He clutches the phone. Go ahead, call the men with the jacket, I don’t care.)
And don’t even get me started about the cashier at Lowes. I’ve been in there three Sundays in a row.
First, I started with the glue pads, six boxes of them. “They are for my son’s class project,” I said. She nodded and looked sad for me.
The next week, I got the poison. The big bag - the one with the scoop. Eyes averted, I whispered “Our neighbors have field mice. They’re getting into our shed.” She pities me, I can tell. I hate her.
This last weekend, when I went to Lowes, I spent over $150 on equipment that I read about on an online Rat Forum. These Plug-Ins emit a piercing sound that field mice hate but humans can‘t hear. I handed her eight of them to ring up.
We made eye contact. “We have Rats.” I said and smiled. She looked away.
As soon as I got home, I plugged them all in.
Oh God….I think I can hear the buzzing sound! (At least my padded room won’t be infested.)
To read more of Angel and Becky’s columns go to www.wilsonpost.com.
By Becky Andrews
It was a 1971 Ford Torino and it was mine! Who cares that it was 1992 and the new car smell disappeared around the time ‘lap only’ seat belts were replaced with those fancy shoulder belts or that the AM radio no longer worked or that every time I pressed the brake water would rush up to the pedals. It was my first car and it was new to me. The newness wore off the third time I had to take it in for repairs. Honestly, I got sick of the mechanics and their lingo.
‘She’s a classic!’
“You need to take care of her.”
I was barely old enough to vote but because she was only fed low grade gasoline and barely bathed, I was the neglectful mother of an inanimate object.
That new car smell applies to many things…jobs, homes, marriage, and yes, even those little bundles of joy who call us mommy.
That new job is perfect until you realize more money means more responsibility. That new home is perfect until that first major repair bill or you visit a friend’s house and realize you should have gone with a different floor plan. The honeymoon stage ends when your husband buys you a new vacuum for your first anniversary. Finally the new car smell of your little boy is nearly impossible to detect once they reach their teens who live in a messy room, have a smart mouth and would rather spend a week without Wi-Fi than give his mother a kiss before getting out of the car on morning drop off.
After 7 long years, more than 40 road trips, countless seasons of baseball, soccer, football, and basketball, at least 1,000 showings of Cars and Happy Feet (whoever decided to put televisions in a vehicle, I’m forever indebted to you), and ten sets of tires, the new car smell had long worn off and that meant it was time to finally retire our family car-my minivan. For me it was like giving away a very important piece of our family history. For my husband, a new car meant he would be getting respect on the roadways once again. He’s always been convinced that no one takes a man in a minivan seriously.
With a new(er) vehicle, it was my goal to keep it cleaner. At 13 and 9 years old, it shouldn’t be that hard for my boys to comply with our new rules. A few days after our purchase, it looked like my new rules were being followed. No longer would I feel embarrassed opening my car door where empty fast food containers, gum, overdue library books and loose change were peppered all over the floor. I patted myself on the back because finally they got it. About that time, my youngest shouted from the back,
“Can we get this car dirty yet? I’m hungry!”
I knew I was getting too cocky.