Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Not interested in becoming a Criminal Minds episode

I live in the Roanoke Valley and there is a lot of crime here. It ranges from murder to shootings to burglary and home invasions. Some days, it feels like an episode at Criminal Minds. For awhile, I didn't feel comfortable leaving home. But of late, crime has move to stealing of scrap metal and appliances. And it's not just abandon homes but occupied ones.

So it didn't surprise that the county I  live in has the fifth highest crime rate in the state of North Carolina. I mean we are up there with the big counties like Mecklenburg. One thing I have noticed, people are fed up. A few weeks ago,  I read a case in my newspaper that made the only newsroom go WOW!

Here's the story. Two men get into an argument at a store. Man 1 decides to go home and get a gun. Everyone urges Man 1 to leave but he refuses. Man 1 returns with gun and shoots Man 2. Now get this, Man 2, who has just been shot, proceeds to beat the crap out of Man 1. In fact at one point Man 2 stops the beating, goes into the store and has employees to call 911 for him. Man 2 comes back out and continues to beat Man 1. When the police arrive, it takes a moment for the realize who the victim. I don't condone violence. But Man 2 had a right to defend himself. Man 2 was not charged.

I am careful  and vigilant but refuse to be a prisoner in my own home. I think most of the Roanoke Valley feels the same. I admit it was so tempting when I went home for lunch to let the screen up on the backdoor and let the rain lull me to sleep. Then I remembered where I live and how I don't feel like being a Criminal Minds episode or being on the front page.


1. JJ graduated from kindergarten today!!!!

2. JJ is reading at a second grade level.

2. My son is AWESOME!!!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ending the day on a good note

It has been a good day. A GOOD DAY! Socially awkward me had lunch with a group of people. I have found I am not very good with people outside of being a reporter. Today, I did okay. The only thing was an outside of my comfort zone moment. Lunch was different but good. I had barbecued roasted chicken along with a salad with dates, strawberries, feta cheese and walnuts drizzled with a blackberry viniagrette. I  have seen meals like this in magazines and on the food network. There was no voice from ED. It was just a peaceful with good outer conversation. Dessert was cake.

Once again, it was a good day. It was good body  image day. I was wearing a cute professional khaki shorts and a cute pair of high heeled brown sandals. When I looked in the mirror, I looked good. I felt good. So after such a nice day, it was fitting I went to a town, where some of the citizens are trying to open their own library. When I arrived there at former elementary school, it warmed my heart to see thousands upon thousands of books. I love reading and libraries. As a shy, poor kid, I would have been lost without books and the library. It was a great escape. I hope JJ will grow up to love reading. He is learning how and can't wait to learn more about the various comic book heroes he loves.

It was nice to end the day with people who wanted to provide the youth and adults in the community with a library. I don't have much in life but I can write a story to inspire others to help. And even though I am just getting home from work, I feel good about spending two hours with them. As Ice Cube once said--"Today was a good day."


1. Three day weekend end coming up!

2. Homemade sweet potato pie!

3. Having an ED free day! Here hoping there are more to come!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Being a grandma's girl and other memories

I live in a neighborhood in RR with lots of kids. It warms my heart to see them playing their yards and riding bikes. These days, you don’t will see kids out and about. It could because of video games or other technology. Or because people are worried about people doing bad things. I am six years older than my brother but if I left home on my bike, he had to be with me. My grandmother’s rationale was if one of us was kidnapped, the other could be a witness for the police. I knew if that was the case, I would have been screwed. My brother would have screamed like a girl and left me. But thankfully, nothing ever happen. 

My family didn’t have a lot when I was a child but I still had a pretty good childhood in South Carolina. I was a bookworm so my grandmother would always buy me books from yard sales. She made sure there was a set of encyclopedias. With Mother’s Day upon us, I think about her and my mom a lot. I missed them both but I think of the many life lessons I learned from them. I am who I am because of those two very strong women.

We lived in the country with a huge front and back yard along with area I called the barn, where my grandmother kept her tractor and other tools. We had plenty of area to roam and play using our imagination. 

One memory that stands out was one day, I got angry about something. I was about nine. I informed my grandmother I was running away. I packed my backpack with some books, peanut butter and crackers and a change of clothes. I was going to make my way in the world. The front yard of my grandmother’s house was huge. At the end of the property was a oak tree beside a huge ditch, the mailbox and the road. I got to the tree and realized that I wasn’t allowed to leave. Now I am suppose to be running away and this is where rules are suppose to go out the window. I remember thinking if I cross this ditch, my grandmother will kill me. So I camped under the oak tree with a chair and my bag. I went a book and ate some crackers. 

At lunch time, my grandmother came out to the tree with a bag and glass of lemonade. In it was a sandwich and an apple. She told me I looked hungry and she couldn’t have a hungry runaway. Then she walked back to the house. By nightfall, I am still under the tree. My grandmother comes out and tells me dinner is ready.
Grandma: It is getting dark sweetie. Why don’t you come in and have some dinner. You get started in the world tomorrow.

The next day, there was no talk of running away. This was how she was. Sometimes, we had to learn our own lesson. Later, she admitted to me that she was scared that I was going to take off up the road. My grandmother never learned out to drive. Her plan B would have been to have a neighbor follow. But it never came to that. I am who I am because of Bessie Lowery (my grandma) and Josephine Lowery (my mom). 

Happy Mother’s Day!!!


1. I am so proud to be a mom!

2. Not cringing or freaking out when I saw video of myself!

3. It's Friday!!!!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

What would you save?

I am back after my little staycation from the world. It was nice and very restful. I had a chance to catch up on my reading,  do some cleaning and take quite a few relaxing baths.

I came across this Tumblr blog—The Burning House.” It was quite interesting and very thought provoking. It has you to answer the question of if you had a few moments to gather your most precious belongings, what would you rescue from impending destruction?

Then you submit photos of things you would save. It took me a week to answer this question.

Here is my photo of what I would save.

The items and why:

--Disney Storybook Collection: JJ loves the stories from this book.

--Prince Ombra by Roderick MacLeish: 

This is my favorite book in the whole world. I discovered it in the seventh grade.

--My mom’s sandals: These shoes remain by bed. It gives me comfort that a piece of her is near me.

--Photo of my grandmother and I: I have very few photos of my grandmother and I. This is my favorite.

--My red and black mixer: I have been in a cake baking mood and this has been a big help.

--Framed photos of my son and nephew: It seems like yesterday both were so small. 

--Stegosaurus: JJ loves dinosaurs and this is one of his favorite.

--The boots: I call these my Rihanna boots. They are awesome and empower me so much. I wear them when I am feeling good. They come in handy on a bad day too.

--Ms. Monkey: During some of my worst ED moments, Ms. Monkey has watched over me.

--Little blue book of JJ’s baby photos: Photos in this book include when he was born, first birthday and all other milestones.

What would you save? Let me know. I can tell you it wouldn’t be easy.


1. Eating an ice cream sandwich while sitting on my deck.

2. Having some sense of order after a week of cleaning.

3. Finding a gift basket full of homemade soaps and lotions from an admirer.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Writing is good for the soul

I have been trying to write more of late. I have all of these cool journals so they should be full instead of empty and attracting dust. I would like to join a writer's group that is here in the Valley. There is a story that has been in my head for about two years now.  So I am trying to get my writing skills up to par. 
I have started with list items and moving toward more longer pieces.

10 things that carry with me at all times are...
In one of my huge purses, there are ten things I always like to carry with me.
1. There is always a photo of JJ for inspiration.
2. My cell phone, which is an necessity for work and staying in contact with JJ.
3. Pens and pens and more pens--I love having a variety to chose from when covering an event.
4. Cinnamon candy--It helps me to stay awake at meetings and driving.
5. Crystal Light lemonade packet--Sometimes you want more than just plain water.
6. My wallet because unfortunately life revolves around money and identification.
7. Business cards--In three years, I have given out almost 2,000 cards. At times, I wonder who did I give all these cards to.
8. A magazine--I  hate to wait without something to read.
9. A  notebook for when inspiration strikes or to make a list like this.
10. Hand sanitzer because one's hand should always be clean.
I am taking some time off from work on Thursday and Friday. What am I doing on my break from newspaper world? I am going go through some of my stuff and decide on donate or keep. Plus, I plan to veg after a busy couple of weeks. I am feeling more at ease about the possibility of keeping my job. Today, we got cool magnetic name tags. This has got to count for something right?
1. Have a nice lunch outside at Sonic!
2. Looking cute in boots and a cute top. Soon the boots will be packed away with all the winter stuff.
3. Not feeling so exhausted.

Happy New Year!!!!

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