Betty’s Week

By Betty Shearer

  Several folks have asked if I had any visitors to come by the Herald on Carnival Weekend. I did, but, with all that was going on in last week’s column I failed to mention them. First in was D. C. Morgan of Shertz, Texas (don’t think he’s every missed a year). Also in was Bill Gafford (Carol was here, but not with him in the office) of Cypress, Texas. Missed seeing Connie and Wayne Simpson. They could not come because Connie was very sick. I was not here on Friday, so probably others stopped by. It’s always great to get in a visit with these long-time friends.

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  In for a short visit last Wednesday was Linda Kinkennon Jenkins of Tupelo. We enjoyed reminiscing about her school days and also about her father, the late Jim Kinkennon, who for many years was my first paper sale on Thursday morning and later on Wednesday. Jim was a terrific person and I always enjoyed chatting with him and still miss him. Also discussed that I did not know her mother, Hazel, very well until after Jim died.

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  Sam Forsyth (Mrs. Danny) was in to bring me a couple of cute pictures of Ed, made probably in his early 20s, and two clippings of his column “Brain Storms.” One of these was the death of the old Hudson. I’d heard about this car, even saw it in Carl and Pat Cox’s vehicle cemetery and knew this column existed. However, I’d just never looked it up in our file copy. I really enjoyed reading it and it and the pictures are appreciated so much.

    The pictures and clippings were from Mrs. Etta Mathis’ (Danny’s grandmother) things. Ed and Kenny Mathis were close friends until Kenny’s death several years before Ed’s. Friends have been so generous in sharing pictures of Ed and I really have enjoyed them, because I had so few. He was usually on the other side of the camera.

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  Bridge was played Thursday night, without me. I was so tired that I just rested—they had enough for the tables without me. I did miss the good food and great fellowship. Eilene File was hostess and she’s a great cook.

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  Got up early Friday morning, shopped at Larson’s, and then went to Bill’s and Jimmie’s. This was the big birthday weekend. We had Mom’s 95th birthday celebration on Saturday (actually her birthday).

  We cleaned and cooked all day Friday. Cooking is done upstairs and serving is downstairs at the Cole house. This means numerous trips up and down stairs with heavy (often hot) loads. I made as many of them as possible, since Jimmie was still suffering with a broken toe. After several trips, I announced that when I made my first million, I was putting in an elevator.  Then, at the end of Saturday, when I was bringing up the final load, I stopped on the landing and said, “Do you think we could design a dumb-waiter we could afford?”

  Mom had a great day, with all six of her children present, five of the seven grands, and five of her eight great-grands. Jim couldn’t make it and neither could niece Lisa, who is also an educator—they were busy getting back into school.

    Jim was glad, because he says he always hates to be the only one not there. He knows that Mam-Ma’s expression would be, “Well, if Jim were here I’d have all my grands with me.” Also with her were spouses of many of her children and grands, along with nieces, nephews, and friends.

  Highlight of the day was meeting nephew Michael’s little daughter, Grace. She is a little doll and the best baby I’ve every seen. She’d ridden in a car seat for over 300 miles, never did take a nap, and just laughed and played all afternoon. She’s a redhead—got that from her Mam-Ma and her Aunt Betty. She talks non-stop and many of her words are as clear as an adult. For a 15 month-old, she says hi, bye, thank-you. As I was watching her, she ran into the kitchen, where Jimmie had a candle decorated with different fruits. Grace put her finger on a grape, and says “grape.” She fits right into the family—loves to eat and talk.

  Didn’t realize how tired I was until I got home about 7:30. Hair didn’t get washed and kitchen is still a wreck. I just became a couch potato for the night.

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  We ate left-overs Sunday and after the dishes were done, Mom and I again took to the easy chairs. Bo and Rance came over and cut my grass. Came on home to get to church and found them loading up. I’d put Mom’s garbage in the van, intending to dump it in her can at the foot of the hill. Forgot, and so I just loaded it in the pickup and told the boys, the garbage needed an outing, but they could take it back to its Panola County home.

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  We had fresh peas for the weekend meals and they were very good. However, when I learned that they are $18 a bushel and you still have to shell them and put them in the freezer, I decided that peas out of the supermarket are just about as good. And they really are. Rance had cooked fresh purple hull peas a couple of weeks ago and I’d cook purple hull peas out of Larson’s freezer and there was very little difference. I just dumped mine in the pan and cooked them. He  had to shell, pick and wash his, and even with all that work his peas were probably three times as expensive as mine. Difference is not worth it!

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  The column is being written late Monday afternoon. I have to complete it, because I have another birthday celebration tonight. Hunter Moore is having his big people party tonight and I’m invited. This is always fun.

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