The Welcome “Skillet” – A tribute to my Mother Joanne

You could smell the grease warming up in the skillet

As the fresh eggs were cracked and poured

Over easy or scrambled they were fried.

Perhaps you just wanted grilled cheese

Bread, butter and cheese, smells I remember so well

Permeating through to my bedroom.

Never did a friend or family member go hungry.

Hamburgers were a staple in our house.

The round buns, buttered then lightly toasted.

Sometimes served on bread not buns, but oh so good.

Lettuce and tomatoes were readily available

As well as dill pickles and cheese.

Till this day, the best hamburgers I ever ate.

Whatever was your fancy,

Took only a moments notice.

The old skillet was but a few steps away

Tucked away in the oven, ready to take on it’s new challenge.

-janis marie-

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What Next?

For the past seven years, I have devoted my time to making sure my Mother was cared for. She always told me that she didn’t want to be a burden to her children, even though, if I would have been able to care for here at my home, I would have done it. Due to her early dementia and always wanting to go home, not sure if she knew where it was, I just couldn’t risk her leaving during the night or just anytime I might have left her un-attended. You see, dementia and Alzheimer’s robs them of all reasoning and understanding and the worst, their memory.

She was a resident of an Assisted Living Facility for five years, followed by a residency in a Nursing Home for a little over two years, when she passed away in her sleep on October 17, 2017.

So many times I thought I had prepared myself for this. It was so unexpected and sudden, that I am thankful that I had done a lot of advanced planning a long time ago and was really glad that I did, because it was very surreal…like I was watching from a distance.

My birthday was two weeks after she passed away, and as I reminisced about all the times we had together, I thought mainly about how happy she was that I was her little girl, who was born on that fall day, November 3, 1956. I made it through my 61st birthday without her…the woman that had given birth to me…my Moma.

Thanksgiving came and went. I was recuperating from hand/elbow surgery… which I planned as a distraction for myself and my family…not to mourn quite so badly, our first holiday without her.

In her honor, a group of family members and friends, assembled on December 17th and made Christmas goodies, using many of the recipes that she used for her Christmas Festivities…and were written in her own handwriting, including one ingredient in particular…a 10 cent bag of miniature marshmallows.

Christmas Eve was pretty much like it had been the past, with traditional gift exchange, same traditional menu…boudin, cracklings, jambalaya and many of the sweet goodies that were Moma’s recipes. Although we didn’t mention her out loud, I know she was in our thoughts.

New Year’s Day has come and gone, and the cold winter has settled into the Deep South. I am so happy just being home, snuggled in a blanket, watching Hallmark Movies…attending to my Poshmark Boutique…but, I’m wondering what I’m going to do to fill this void…I visited her two/three times a week for the past seven years.

I’m definitely not my Moma’s daughter when it comes to crafting or yard work. Not only did my apple fall far from the tree…but it rolled down the hill, into the creek and has been floating ever since.

I need the motivation to get up off the couch to do something productive. I hope I find it soon.

I’m Not The Perfect Daughter

Some of you my think of me as the perfect daughter. I am not and was not…but in the end, I’m praying that I made a difference in the lives of my parents.

I can remember the many times growing up, that I was mean to Moma & Daddee. Most of my memories are after we got married, because at the young age of 18, I know now, I was still in the process of growing up and maturing when Ronald and I walked down the aisle.

Good memories are Daddee not being in a hurry to drive me to church…now I know why. Moma wanting everything so perfect and it was. They got up in the early morning of November 9, 1974 to get food ready for the reception. I wonder how they felt? Their only daughter was getting married?

The time, Daddee told me on Christmas Day, that I had put on a little weight! I blew up at him…regrets till this day. I’m sorry, Daddee.

The joy of holding their grandson. Moma spending the night at my home, when I came home from the hospital…only for me to yell at her, “he’s my baby, I know what to do!” Oh my God, how much that must have hurt her.

Often times, I thought about asking her if she forgave me, during her Alzheimer’s, but if there’s one good thing about it, perhaps she didn’t remember the pain I caused her.

While Daddee was in the Nursing Home, we would go see him almost every Sunday afternoon. As regular as clockwork, on Sunday night, my phone would ring at 7:00 pm. It was Moma…asking how our week had gone and what we did that day. How it must have hurt her, knowing we went see him and not her.

When the signs of dementia started with Moma, I tried to visit her at Spring Bayou more often, especially on a weekday. We had good times just sitting in the swing and watching the boats go by. She would ask me to spend the night and many times I did…but not often enough. While she was residing in Assisted Living, she would always ask me to stay the night and I said I would soon, but never did. After she moved to the Nursing Home, I spent one night with her. ONLY ONE!!! And she didn’t even know I was there. I had every intention of spending the night with her soon…now she’s gone and I can’t.

Neal and Mike grew up without me around, because they were 10 and 8 years old when Ronald and I got married. I never saw a mean or honorary intention from either of them, with Moma. “Never in my Lifetime or Hers”.

If my brothers have regrets that they didn’t do enough…they did more than I ever did…they honored their Mother.

Tomorrow, November 3, will be my first birthday without my Moma. Even if I live to be 100 years old, it will not be the same.

I love you Moma. Thank you for giving life to me.

Your only daughter, Janis.

 

I’m A Speaker

Poshmark Cliff Notes
Ready to get the ultimate cheat sheet for mapping your way through Poshmark? This
session will dive into all the things you need to know like the importance of Posh Parties, Showrooms, Posh N Sips and Sharing!

For a complete lineup of this years speakers:

http://bit.ly/PoshFest17Speakers

 

 

 

Blue “Bunny”

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We stumbled upon this ice cream in 2016. It was not as expensive as the other “Blue Brand” Ice Cream, plus if nothing else, I could re-use the plastic tub to store frozen soups.

I shouldn’t be sharing this, because I’m afraid that all of it will now be purchased, and I will never eat the “BEST ICE CREAM EVER” again, because it will be “scouped” up by all of you.

Hands down, the creamiest texture and taste. The bunnies are filled with soft caramel and the caramel swirls throughout are melted and soft…how’s this possible, in a frozen dessert?

Please don’t let the name “Salted Caramel Craze” turn you away! I promise, you will love it.  However, please save some for me!

 

 

My Makeup & Brush Boat

I had an idea today, to design a makeup & brush boat.

I found the boat (vase) at Walmart and the stones at Dollar Tree.

Now I have my brushes, lip-stick, tweezers and miscellaneous tools readily available.

Feel free to copy my idea or share one of your own.

 

 

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My Recipe for Bread Pudding

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Cut 10 slices of white or wheat bread into cubes and place into a 9″ x 13″  casserole dish.

(This is the part where, measuring makes no sense )

Take a 4 Cup Pyrex Measuring Cup and add 4 large eggs and 2 cups sugar.  Mix well by hand or mixer.

To this egg/sugar mixture add either: whole milk, 1/2 & 1/2, evaporated milk (equal parts water) to the 4 cup fill line on Pyrex Cup  (See I told you it makes no sense)

Mix well by hand or mixer.

Pour this mixture evenly over the prepared bread cubes in casserole dish. Let it rest a few minutes  (Take fork and saturate bread cubes, being careful not to mash)

Take one bar of butter (not oleo) and cut into squares or cubes. Dot butter over bread/egg/milk mixture. (Optional: Add pecan chips or cinnamon or brown sugar to taste or all three)

Preheat oven to 350˚.  Place un-baked Bread Pudding mixture into oven and bake for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour, until it resembles soufflé and not runny. It taste better when it is ‘mushy”.

Remove from oven when done. Drizzle with honey or waffle syrup or pecan flavor syrup, or basically any type syrup you like.

Best when served warm. Refrigerate leftovers

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My Little Succulent Garden

Although my Mom has the “greenest thumb” ever,  I’m like the television commercial says…”the gardening gene skipped a generation” when I was born.

Two pff’s gave me the inspiration to plant a succulent garden, Adiel & Elle.

So far, it’s in the beginning stage, but doing good.

I’ll update with photos along the way.

Happy First Day of Spring

This beautiful amaryllis was from a bulb transplanted from my mom’s beautiful garden. In honor of her, I am posting this photo on the first day of Spring 2017. IMG_1150