Saturday, January 31, 2015

Dance to the Music

Blog in my head but choosing not to blog as much on weekends---so I'll finish and post on Monday.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Around Town #3

Overton Square is on the rise.
"Thursdays Squared" was last summer's concert series and it showcased the energy that was pulsing thru this recently dubbed "Theater District." 
New restaurants there were also on everyone's culinary destination list. Babalu was my first find with their tableside "best guac on the bloc." 
Today's "find," Belly Acres, would be a "build your own burger" paradise for lovers of grain fed beef. I, on the other hand, was "rurally"enchanted by the decor and the unique street signs assigned with each order. 
I also have a quirky habit of checking out a restaurant's restroom---it's part of a  many a "lady's" dining experience. Since the restaurant's interior has been described as looking like "Willy Wonka" bought a farm," I knew checking our the restroom was a must. 
A bucket sink and straw on the walls----I was not disappointed. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Around Town #2

Delightful describes three recent happenings around "Memphis Town."
Three "events" made me smile. Smiles made even bigger because events were attended with dear friends!!
  • Chaperoning HHS English students at Opera Memphis production of Hansel and Gretel was a treat. The inventive set was an example of less is more and the hand-drawn screens, which enabled shadow play, were mesmerizing. Plus, a friend's daughter was one of the gingerbread men. Ned Canty continues his mission to bring opera to the people---from the pop-up opera introductions in the routines of our lives from farmer's mkt., Botanic Garden and Shelby Farms playground to the upcoming Midtown Opera Festival in April. Kudos to Canty who has elevated opera acceptance throughout our town.
  • Paddington, the movie, showing at several Malco theaters will make you smile, whether your are 9 or 90. So rare to find such a family type movie these days. It's worth adopting a child for a day if you need a reason to go see it. As for me, I was the youngest in our group---at an age some folks consider elderly, and I smiled---a lot!
  • TV Dinners, a lunchtime option at River Oaks. Chef José Gutierrez takes all food to the next level of delicious. Every morsel delightful. José's TV Dinner concept provides 4 small portions. Think...."Four-Course Prix-Fixe"......including salad, entree, veggie and dessert. Definitely more sophisticated than the Swanson dinners of the 50s. The warm dark chocolate cake is a favorite dessert.....
    but the creme brulee made me smile!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Moratorium on "STUFF"

How many orange Sharpie's does one need?
Oh--forsooth.......this is just the master bedroom batch.
  • It doesn't matter if I love a variety of pens......(colored and black) FriXion erasable & retractable pens, which means erasers are well as freshly sharpened pencils.
  • It doesn't matter if the pens are all on sale.
  • Ink joy, Pentel RSVP, fine line, medium point, gel point, roller ball, even "fountain" pens.
  • It doesn't matter if I have a $20 reward coupon for the $19.76 purchase.
It's all too much---thus a moratorium declared.....because.....

Organized clutter is still clutter. (Mary Anne McDonald)'s a new year and I hope to show restraint as I seek to declutter the "stuff" in  my life, even my favorite writing implements.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Pastor Taylor Park said it well---a time for grieving as well as celebrating as Terry Parlow has now left his blindness and paralysis behind and is embracing a new life in the heavenly realm. 
Whole. Complete.
Yesterday, I was privileged to share memories of Terry Parlow with his friends and family.
Terry Parlow Memorial Service 1/21/15

Many of you here have known the Parlow family longer than I have, yet we all know one thing---Terry Parlow loved the Lord.....

...and that love for the Lord “kept” Terry (Numbers 6:24)--God’s grace enveloped him in a way and with a depth that those of us on the outside could only marvel. It was that “light” which Terry had an abundance of---a light intensified by the physical darkness of his blindness, light which Terry shared with me by lifestyle example.

For a few years after Terry’s 2004 accident, I would read to him on Wednesday afternoons---he loved biographies and history----esp war stories ---civil war---World War II
A few months ago I read a book whose title spoke to me of Terry---All the Light we Cannot See, a story of a young girl who was blind from age 6--and the storyline emphasized all she was able to see and sense in relationships, even without her sight, reminded me of Terry’s “condition.” Terry “saw” spiritual truth at every turn and was willing to share with everyone---the dependence and grace necessary to live blind and wheelchair bound---all the while seeing God’s hand in it and celebrating God’s goodness. I never once saw that faith waver.

Oswald’s Chamber’s 1/19 entry in his devotional book, My Utmost for His Highest, spoke volumes to me about ”darkness being a time to listen and wait on God to send the light.” Terry would wait and then he would share what he was learning, his own personal "light"---
Being blind and paralyzed removes all self-sufficiency but there is still a choice ---bitterness or acceptance. 
Humility and acceptance were a part of Terry’s faith fabric. I never saw anything but humility and acceptance from Terry---ever trusting God throughout these past 10 years. All else paled as Terry continually “placed His confidence in God Himself, not in “blessings.”

Terry epitomized the words from Psalm 130:5. “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in His word, I hope.

Terry Parlow used his “disability platform” to shed God’s light on all of us and we were blessed for it.

Recently, one of my most memorable “Terry blessings” was the day the lift on his van broke. I was speaking at First Evan’s monthly “He Cares,” a ministry for the homebound. He was between ICU visits at the time and had said very boldly, “I’ll be there!”…..and he was. Determined, he had asked sweet Ronye, his caregiver for help and she “pushed him in his wheelchair” all the way there. What an encouragement to me. What a man of his word!

Terry loved the Lord and he loved Claudia---since Whitehaven high school days until her cancer took her home. Tt\hey were always together, outliving medical projections for both of them and celebrating their 50th anniversary just months before she died.

“His Claudia,” the ultimate caregiver, ever at his side, even at Shepherd Ctr when Terry was deemed the worst---at Shepherd’s that’s like being the worst of the worst. She kept him going. All of us seemed to say their names in tandem. A true couple.

As former neighbor Julie said that, “After moving to Memphis, Terry and Claudia embraced her like a warm blanket” ---always encouraging, guiding and sharing God’s love with her. They did it together.

Terry loved the Lord, loved Claudia, and loved sports, esp. if they wore TIGER BLUE---he taught hubby Larry and friend Terry Tippet the value of a good radio commentator --one who could make the “game” come alive for a sport’s fan. He said he could visualize every move in a Tiger game if Dave Woloshin were commentating. 
Terry made us all aware that when “listening” to TV commentators it was a LOT harder---as commentators rarely recap and spend more time giving their own opinions instead of describing an event---or saying, “Would you look at that?” “Or have you ever seen anything like that?” It’s easy to understand a “Blind Viewers” frustration.

Terry loved the Lord, loved Claudia, and loved sports ---and that competitive spirit spilled over into another love---an affinity which Terry and I shared. We both loved Jeopardy and often “watched” it together. Many days I had an unfair advantage because there would be a “visual clue” category, but somehow that seemed to bother me more than it bothered him. What chance does a “blind” man have in identifying mustaches of famous people when you can’t see the mustache, much less the face of the person.
Even if I were in another part of the condo, and the “T-h-i-s- is Jeopardy” theme music came on, he would call out to tell me it was starting. Ronye & Katherine, his God-sent caregivers, seemed to always have it on Channel 3 at 3:30 on week-days.
His memory was incredible and he would often comment on the girl from Wisconsin or some other tidbit gleaned from one of the contestants---esp. the blind gent who came back for the “Battle of the Decades” this past year.
Terry had his own rules for keeping score. Even on days we watched it separately, he would phone me with an update on the number of Jeopardy questions he answered, and the number from the double Jeopardy round. Occasionally, he would factor in the true daily double but that was harder to do since he only gave himself points and not money amounts.

But....the "Final Jeopardy" category was where Terry ruled---because if he got the Final Jeopardy answer, he considered that a real win!

Saturday January 17th Terry got the Final Jeopardy answer. Terry always knew the Final Jeopardy answer to his own life.

The question is, “Where will Terry spend eternity?”

The answer (in question form, naturally)   “Where is heaven?”

Terry “Got” the correct answer the minute he stepped into the Presence of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. That makes Terry the winner…..

I’m just grateful to have been able to be a player in his life.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

In Memory of Terry

Jeopardy is about to come on---an appropriate time to post this blog, as Terry and I share an affinity for that game show.
He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever. (Revelation 21:14)
The last time my friend Terry Parlow was coherent as I stood at his bedside, I cried.*
He cried too. But, as his face contorted in anguish, no tears came----so I shared mine, wiping them in his spiky hair.
Today was the memorial service for this godly man and longtime friend. Tomorrow I will post my remembrances for Aunt Mary and D.C. Julie to read.

*My last pic with Claudia---

Monday, January 19, 2015


Passages----Mine seemed pretty dark these past weeks and especially this week-end---- 
Life's journey is full of passages---from one season or event to the next.....until our final passage into the hereafter. 

Passing from one place to another can take on lots of meanings. Often baby boomers see aging as a passage----a prelude to their  "final" season or passage. Since December 14, I have had 7 friends or loved ones of friends enter eternity. A favorite aunt remains in hospice. 

Death is definitely a defining passage.  The life lived between the birth certificate and the death certificate identifies that final place. Knowing the Lord offers hope for one's eternal resting place and for those in the middle of the suffering it becomes a desired destination. From home to hospital to hospice to the arms of the God Himself. Those in "the shadow of death" are covered in grace and find peace as they pass over. They have the "foretaste of glory divine."

Those of us left behind are the ones who are grieving.

But God.....reminded me---be grateful for the life lived. Grateful for the end of their suffering. Grateful that our paths crossed. Grateful for the "blessed assurance" for these heirs of salvation.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Around Memphis Town #1

Choose 901 is a website for the twenty-somethings or thirty-somethings---with lots of instagrams, snapwidgets, hashtags, memes and things I don't really "get." But.... I like its positive "newsy" approach to living in Memphis.
Yesterday when I was at Muddy's Grindhouse, I recognized pottery from Paper and Clay and realized it had been featured on Choose 901---I felt "with it."
I'm too old to post or tag Choose 901 or the I love Memphis blog, tho I appreciate their events updates. But, I can share a few "new to me" places or happenings in Memphis with my "mature" readers.
A "White Tie" cupcake to take home to hubby who was busy staining and painting---after putting in  pocket door for me. He deserved a whole cake.
This cozy Cooper-Young place has tea for me, (coffee for most) and some yummy biscuits, scones, cupcakes, etc.  A "crazy good" kind of place as young folks dub it. The study bench/table near the window was also perfect for prayers with my sweet friend, Nancy Emanuel.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

In My Face 1/13/2009, 5:02 PM

Past entries are always front and center in my journal style devotional book, "My Utmost for His Highest." Some make me smile---like births, a grand's milestone or first word.
Other entries.... not so much.
Today's jotting sounds ominous and would seem one of the "harder" entries to recall.
Dr. Schneider called at 5:02 pm tonight with cancer diagnosis. (asking if I were sitting down, as I recall) ---rare microcystic adnexal carcinoma---will need to come out--deep  and major reconstruction will be required...."
....the 1/13/09 entry reminded me of a grim diagnosis with an iffy prognosis that became a year of incredible blessings and the life of abunDANCE that followed. 

Monday, January 12, 2015


The parking lot was packed at the Germantown Athletic Center this past Friday. Jane Chittick said the drivers were mostly RPs and they would be gone in about 6 weeks.
Not knowing that acronym, I raised a quizzicle eyebrow.

RPs=Resolution People. According to Jane, they are easily recognizable ---wearing all the best togs, especially shoes. The outer display is all "show" and hides the inner lack of perseverance.
First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. (Matt. 23:26)
Resolved---I do not want to be a spiritual RP---I want my insides as clean as my outsides. Inner cleansing with God's word is key, if I am to persevere in my spiritual goal of pleasing Him.