Thursday, December 30, 2010

M. I. Crooked Letter Crooked Letter I.

Crooked Letter Crooked Letter I. Hump Back Hump Back I.

Yep.  We've been there and back.  We made our semi-annual trek to Chuck's hometown in the Delta of Mississippi.  He's the only one that moved away so we see his siblings and families as well as his mother when we go.  This was the first Christmas without his father Bill, who passed away in April, so his presence was sorely missed.

As was the "Trash" Bill always made...the Chex Mix, peanuts and pretzel stuff.  He would make tons of it each year and send us home with a huge jar of it.  Rarely did it make it to the Texas border on our way home.

If I started listing all the things we ate while there for 72 hours, you would have to take a restroom and meal break.  Here's just some of what we ate: chili, chips and dip, chocolate cake, ham and cheese sandwiches, tamales, hamburgers, beef and cabbage casserole, peas, lima beans, corn, rolls, breakfast casserole, sausage balls, biscuits, scrambled eggs, bacon .........and sweet tea at every meal.  Also a pitcher of boiled custard was consumed by Chuck and Will.

Boiled custard is similar to eggnog.  But the only time I tasted it, I got a taste of tuna in the sulfurish boiled eggs that sometimes are in tuna fish salad.  That was the only time I ever tasted it.  I'll pass, thank you. Chuck and Will got their annual cholesterol intake.

On Monday, we shopped the downtown area, Chuck ran some errands for his mom and we made plans to eat at his sister's house. On the way there, we made a trip out to the cemetary to see Bill's headstone. This was very important to my mother-in-law so we did this.

We were only there for a few minutes and it felt strange to stop, see it and go.  Maybe the next time we're there, we'll have more time to spend with our thoughts. For me, Bill is not really there...but the marker and the gravesight is a tangible thing for others.

Chuck's sister, Beth, is married to a farmer and they live in the middle of nowhere on a big farm.  Well, it's "somewhere" obviously, but when you're out there.....there is nothing for miles around.

Middle of nowhere...the view from her front porch.

Beth has a beautiful home but we rarely drive out there on our visits to Mississippi...since the parents' home is our hub while we're there.  Beth usually takes down her Christmas decorations the day after Christmas, but left them up this year because we were going out to her house on Monday evening for dinner.  I took some pictures of 5 of her 8 or 9 trees. 

 Red tree with silver ornaments in her study.

 Santa Claus tree in the family room.

 Black tree with wild animal ornaments in the sun room.

 Another little tree in the safari decorated sun room.

Ole Miss tree on the kitchen table.

Beth is a huge Ole Miss fan so there was
lots of evidence of that around the house.

He donned him now his gay apparel.......fa la la la la la la la la.

An Ole Miss painting over her kitchen sink.  This is from a local artist
and the sides are covered in beer bottle caps. 
Pretty dern cute...  
even if this house pulls for Mississippi State
and of course the fighting Texas Aggies.
Maybe some of you Aggies can come up with
something like this.

I made Beth a Hotty Toddy Ole Miss photo block for her
 Christmas present per her request.
I forgot to take a picture of it before
 I wrapped it, so here's a bad picture of it
 after she opened it and put it on her desk. ha.

We did a lot of sitting around, watching football, eating, and then
 eating some more before we all got dessert.

Marmie (Chuck's mother) and Mimi (Beth's mother-in-law)
smiled for the camera.  Both of these women lost
their husbands of over 50 years this past year. 
They are strong but are certainly struggling to adapt to the change
of living alone for the first time since being 19.

Some texted. Nonstop.
Really Will?
Grrrr.  Be in the moment, mister.

 Tuesday night, we ate at Chuck's brother Michael's house. 
 Another fun night of hanging around, watching football and eating.
  When I say "watching football"...I mean others
were watching football.  I was in the room with them until I got up and wandered around with the kids and took pictures.

That bulletin board is a regular bulletin board painted.
Even the border of brown is painted on. 
 I studied it for you.  

 Little Billy Hackney

A competitive game of Wii between
 a 10 year old and a 20 year old.

 Chuck's parents on their wedding day.
Circa early 1950's.

I was taking pictures of the tree
 when the dogs starting peeping in. 
I made that Santa on the left years ago.
It made me happy to see him again. 

The majority of the Mississippi Hackney cousins
were there so I had them pose for a group shot. 

While we were sleeping, the kids grew up.

And because I'm not in any of the pictures,
 I had Will snap one of me. 
Proof I was there.
We headed home on Wednesday.

Somewhere around Lufkin, Texas.

I tried to capture the eery skyline from
 a moving vehicle with a rainy windshield.
This is all I got.  Trust me, it was spooky.
I kept thinking a tornado would drop down any moment.

The ride home was long and stormy but we arrived safely. 
Home again, home again, jiggety jig.
Nothing feels as good as my bed on the first night back.

The year is over tomorrow. 
Two thousand ten was a good year in so many ways and
a sad year in other ways.

Like a teeter-totter,
 our lives go up and down. 
The best we can hope for is to 
 remain balanced in that middle place.


  1. Great post! Beautiful homes! The dogs peeking in look like a painting.... You look adorable! Happy New Year!

  2. I agree-great photos, all!!!! Those look like funnel clouds to me...