The List

By ANGEL KANE, Wilson Living Magazine There is only one thing more painful than taking a hammer and repeatedly slamming it against the tips of your fingers, over and over again. And we all know what it is…shopping for school supplies.

For this reason, every year, I promise myself that I’ll be one of those mothers who buy the pre-boxed, highly priced school supplies from the PTO. But unfortunately for all involved, I’m also one of those mothers who, every year, forgets to turn in the slip necessary to reserve said pre-boxed, highly priced school supplies. 

Ever the optimist, however, I wait in line on registration day, assuming I did turn in the slip…only to be reminded by “supermom working the PTO table” that my name is not on the list…because, once again, I have failed my children.

Which means it’s off to the races…trying to find the multitude of items on an exhaustive list after the supermoms in town have already bought all the school supplies within a 100 mile radius…just to spite me!  But this year, things are different.

First off, child number two has already reminded me that I failed to turn in the slip. Apparently, being told by supermom last year that she comes from less than perfect stock is not something she wants to relive.

And secondly, this year, when I shop for school supplies, I am taking a sacrificial lamb. So as my husband and I walked into Target, I said,

“I’m going to look for a toaster. Just take this school supply list to the back, and I’ll meet you over there when I am done. Go ahead, take it – all the supplies are in one spot.”

And the innocent lamb looked up at me and said “Ok, let’s get this done quickly, so we can go eat dinner.”

Poor thing, I thought, little did he know HE was dinner – those crazed supermoms back there were going to eat him alive!

One and a half hours later, after I had perused all the toasters Target had to offer (and then some) I sauntered back to school supplies.

The lamb no longer looked innocent, he looked crazed.

“Where have you been? I’ve been calling your phone over and over! I can’t find half the garbage on this list. Why do they need self-sharpening colored pencils? And what are accordion files? By the way, I had the last box of 24-count crayons until that so-called mother over there took them right out of my hands!”

“You see,” I cried back. “You never listen to me when I tell you that teachers are horrible people. Don’t you remember me telling you about Read-a-Thon, Field Day or Science Fair. These events are not about the children…they are a means of ruining my life and it all starts on day one with the school supply list!”

When we finally got home that evening and laid all the supplies on the counter, child number two had a complete meltdown.

“These are not self-sharpening colored pencils. I can’t be expected to use a sharpener! And the list said a BOX of Clorox wipes not the tube! Are these 7-pocket accordion files? You were supposed to get the 10 pocket ones!!”

“Stop screaming,” I said. “Daddy will go back out tomorrow and get anything we missed.”

After which I noticed my husband…reach for the hammer.

To read more of Angel and Becky’s columns go to www.wilsonpost.com and hit Columns & Blogs.

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Telling Tales – The List

By ANGEL KANE, Wilson Living Magazine There is only one thing more painful than taking a hammer and repeatedly slamming it against the tips of your fingers, over and over again. And we all know what it is…shopping for school supplies.

For this reason, every year, I promise myself that I’ll be one of those mothers who buy the pre-boxed, highly priced school supplies from the PTO. But unfortunately for all involved, I’m also one of those mothers who, every year, forgets to turn in the slip necessary to reserve said pre-boxed, highly priced school supplies. 

Ever the optimist, however, I wait in line on registration day, assuming I did turn in the slip…only to be reminded by “supermom working the PTO table” that my name is not on the list…because, once again, I have failed my children.

Which means it’s off to the races…trying to find the multitude of items on an exhaustive list after the supermoms in town have already bought all the school supplies within a 100 mile radius…just to spite me!  But this year, things are different.

First off, child number two has already reminded me that I failed to turn in the slip. Apparently, being told by supermom last year that she comes from less than perfect stock is not something she wants to relive.

And secondly, this year, when I shop for school supplies, I am taking a sacrificial lamb. So as my husband and I walked into Target, I said,

“I’m going to look for a toaster. Just take this school supply list to the back, and I’ll meet you over there when I am done. Go ahead, take it – all the supplies are in one spot.”

And the innocent lamb looked up at me and said “Ok, let’s get this done quickly, so we can go eat dinner.”

Poor thing, I thought, little did he know HE was dinner – those crazed supermoms back there were going to eat him alive!

One and a half hours later, after I had perused all the toasters Target had to offer (and then some) I sauntered back to school supplies.

The lamb no longer looked innocent, he looked crazed.

“Where have you been? I’ve been calling your phone over and over! I can’t find half the garbage on this list. Why do they need self-sharpening colored pencils? And what are accordion files? By the way, I had the last box of 24-count crayons until that so-called mother over there took them right out of my hands!”

“You see,” I cried back. “You never listen to me when I tell you that teachers are horrible people. Don’t you remember me telling you about Read-a-Thon, Field Day or Science Fair. These events are not about the children…they are a means of ruining my life and it all starts on day one with the school supply list!”

When we finally got home that evening and laid all the supplies on the counter, child number two had a complete meltdown.

“These are not self-sharpening colored pencils. I can’t be expected to use a sharpener! And the list said a BOX of Clorox wipes not the tube! Are these 7-pocket accordion files? You were supposed to get the 10 pocket ones!!”

“Stop screaming,” I said. “Daddy will go back out tomorrow and get anything we missed.”

After which I noticed my husband…reach for the hammer.

To read more of Angel and Becky’s columns go to www.wilsonpost.com and hit Columns & Blogs.

 

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Telling Tales – Summer Break is Almost Over

Can I get an AMEN!?

By BECKY ANDREWS, Wilson Living Magazine
This summer our home has been a revolving door of activity. I do believe there’s not been a single week where my boys have not had at least one sleepover (at our house). You may or may not know how hard it is to work from home during your children’s summer break. It’s not all together impossible, just challenging. And unless you’ve sat at your makeshift desk at the kitchen table talking on the phone, trying to work on your computer while your children decide to fight a blood match 12 inches away-you may not understand.

I prefer kids to stay over at our house. It actually helps me… most of the time. For the duration of the sleepover, my children forego fighting each other and instead have a wrestling match with their guest(s). If I go into my closet and shut the door, I can take business calls without interruption. The only problem is the amount of damage four boys can do to a perfectly tidy bonus room left unsupervised for 10 minutes.

Last weekend my oldest son’s best friend and his cousin stayed a couple of days with us. The boys had a blast. Playing, running, jumping, yelling, screaming, wrestling. Since the heat index was well over 100 degrees, this flurry of activity was happening inside our house.

I love that children are comfortable at our home. So comfortable in fact that they cool themselves by opening the refrigerator and staring at its contents for 10 minutes or until my husband shouts, “It’s cheaper to stand over the air conditioning vent!”

So this summer we’ve had about 30 sleepovers-give or take-, gone through 2 tubes of triple antibiotic ointment, 3 cans of sunscreen, 2 bottles of bug spray, a gross of marshmallows, 1 large box of band aids, 1,000 yards of fishing line and 4 containers of worms. We watched 5 movies at the theater, set off 8000 bottle rockets and spent enough on groceries to feed a small country. All this with ZERO trips to the emergency room, pretty good for boys I think.

We did manage to squeeze in a trip to The Frist. The boys didn’t care for the Andy Warhol exhibit. When we left they were both complaining about how they never get to do anything fun. To distract them, my sister asked if they had a good time.

Now I had just about all I could take from these little ingrates so before they could answer I said, “If you say you didn’t like it, you guys aren’t doing anything the rest of the summer!” Not my finest moment.  But if I have to live through my upstairs smelling like gym socks all summer, they will go to The Frist with me and like it; NO, they will LOVE it!

I’ve learned a few things on this break. One, summer break was created to make parents appreciate the school year. Two, kids today have no idea what it means to be bored. And three, because I think we should go back to the good ole days when children would spend at least two weeks in the summer visiting an out of town close family member, my children will be making a surprise visit to my sister’s house in Oregon next summer.

Email Becky any comments to becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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WLM - Lebanon Attorney Brody Kane at his law office

A Return to Wilson County, brings on the Good Life

By BRODY KANE

When my wife first asked me to consider writing the “Good Life’ feature for Wilson Living, I immediately thought of an old televisionWLM - Lebanon Attorney Brody Kane at his law office series she and I watched in our early married years in Memphis. It was appropriately titled “The Good Life” and, in short, told the story of a person, couple or family who decided to make changes in their life to pursue a dream or simply to shake up their lives. More often than not, it was centered around someone who picked up stakes and moved to the beaches of Hawaii, deserts of Arizona, mountains of Colorado or wherever that person perceived the good life to be.

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WLM - Blue Devil

Once A Blue Devil, Always A Blue Devil

WLM - Blue Devil Continue reading “Once A Blue Devil, Always A Blue Devil”

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WLM - Proudly staniding in front of the new outdoor showroom - L to R: Don Chambers, Glen Chambers, Kellie Mires, B.F "Jack" Lowery and Jack D Lowery

All Roads lead to Lojac Materials

A FAMILIAR NAME TAKES ON AN NEW PROJECT

By BECKY ANDREWS

WLM - Proudly staniding in front of the new outdoor showroom - L to R: Don Chambers, Glen Chambers, Kellie Mires, B.F "Jack" Lowery and Jack D LoweryWhen home sales started to slump a few years ago it forced many of us to reevaluate. Instead of buying a new ‘American Dream’ many had the bright idea to stay put and transform their current home. And transform they did…the backyard, side yard and porch. The silver lining of the real estate slump is outdoor living spaces. One local company has decided to make it easier than ever to create the outdoor space you’ve dreamed about and more affordable than ever.

Lojac, a name synonymous with road construction, brick and block products has now expanded their expertise and product line. Lojac Materials, a division of Lojac, can now also help with every aspect of creating the perfect outdoor entertainment area that will help you enhance your home and enrich your lifestyle. LoJac makes it easy for homeowners and contractors to create a beautiful outdoor living space with just the right style of stone or masonry, along with a complete selection of outdoor fireplaces, fire pits, and a complete outdoor kitchen.

On May 19th Lojac officially introduced their new product line to the public at a block party where attendees including former Tennessee Titan, Blaine Bishop got to take a hands-on tour of their outdoor living products at the outdoor showroom in their Lebanon location. This extraordinary hardscape display area is the first of its kind in Middle Tennessee, and it’s available to walk through 24 hours a day. Lojac personnel can help you customize the right outdoor living space to fit any home’s architectural style, your budget and family entertainment needs.WLM - Local Business professionals tour the Lojac Materials facility

Materials Operations Manager, Ron Bridges is excited to see Lojac at the forefront of the outdoor living boom. “This is an area of home construction and home improvement that in the past has been overlooked. But now we are realizing just how important it is to enjoy every area of our home. You take care of creating new memories with your family outside and Lojac will take care of adding an outdoor entertainment area that makes a real-world difference in the beauty and enjoyment of being at home.”

The new outdoor showroom is open to the public and is located at 1401 Toshiba Drive in Lebanon. For more information call (615) 449-1401

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WLM - Cicadas

Cicada Time in Tennessee

WLM - Cicadas
By ROY W. HARRIS

Every year Memorial Day weekend officially kicks off one of the most looked forward to times of the year – SUMMER. Nature moves into high gear with greening lawns, leafing trees and exploding color of flowering mosaics that only the fingers of God could create. This year’s announcement of impending summer brought with it something else, the arrival of an unusual insect known as the Cicada. Cicadas are not new to those of us who’ve been around middle Tennessee for more than a dozen years but to others they are strange creatures that look like a cross between a dragonfly and a grasshopper who lost his back legs.

Only the good Lord knows the reason and purpose of the Cicadas. Their lives seem to be characterized by little purpose, enjoyment or fulfillment. They come from nowhere, stick around for a few weeks, eat, breed, crawl back into the ground and are not heard from for another thirteen years.

Why mention Cicadas? Maybe there are lessons we can learn from the Cicada. Let’s give it a shot – “Lessons from the Cicadas”.

Lesson #1. Life is short. The Cicada is on this earth for a short period of time. The scriptures tell us that most people are lucky if they live to be 70 and doubly so if they reach 80. The years quickly pass and like the Cicada, we fly away. According to 2011 U.S. statistics, life expectancy for the average American is 78.3 years. Isn’t it amazing that something written thousands of years ago is still accurate today. The scriptures also compare the length of life to a vapor or wisp of steam. We seem to suddenly appear on this earth, and just as quickly disappear and are gone. Our time on earth is short. We should make our lives count for worthwhile things which have eternal value.WLM - Cicadas

Lesson #2. Life has purpose. For the life of me I cannot find a reason for the existence of the Cicada. Even though it may be hidden from us, God has purpose in everything He does, and He has a purpose and reason for the clockwork like 13-year arrival of the Cicada. The scriptures remind us that every human being is uniquely created by God and his or her clock-like arrival on this earth is an appointment with destiny prearranged by God Himself. Others may never know, and we may never fully understand what our purpose is, but we can rest in the assurance that God has a pre-designed plan for each of us.

Lesson #3. Life has choices. The Cicada male makes a sound which has been clocked at over 100 decibels. The united chorus of thousands of male Cicadas radiates like loud speakers from every tree and shrub in the neighborhood. The males sound off in an attempt to attract the attention of a potential mate. The female has an almost limitless choice of males to choose from. Who knows why she picks out that perfect one? Our lives are also filled with choices. Our choices are influenced by a myriad of voices radiating from a variety of people and circumstances. Doing the right thing is always the right thing to do. How do we make right choices? The Cicada has to rely on nature’s instinct. We have two wonderful gifts provided to help us. One is our conscience. God has placed a sense of right and wrong deep down inside each of us. The arrow our moral compass points us towards is magnetic right and 180 degrees away from moral wrong. Letting your conscience be your guide is pretty safe for most situations. God also offers wisdom from above. Solomon, considered to be one of the wisest men who ever lived, wrote a book found in the Bible called Proverbs. It provides a wealth of practical advice for our daily choices. A great way to gain wisdom for life is to read one chapter in Proverbs each day (Proverbs has 31 chapters). Reading one chapter per day will help one to gain insight into how to be healthy, wealthy and wise. Well, maybe wise anyway.

Lesson #4. Life has opportunities. The Cicadas live their short lives exhibiting a philosophy that seems far too prevalent in our world today. That philosophy is that it’s all about me. The Cicada lives his life grabbing for himself, never giving – only taking. There is no greater feeling in the world than giving. The recent flooding of those along the Mississippi River is a reminder of the great 1,000-year flood we experienced a little over a year ago in middle Tennessee. There was little self-pity or looking towards Washington for help. There was an immediate onslaught of volunteers who mobilized wanting to help those who’d been devastated by floodwaters. The spirit of giving and expecting nothing in return became the order of the day. That biblical principle that ‘it is more blessed to give than to receive’ still rings true today. We each have opportunities to give time, talent and treasure to our families, friends, church, community and nation. Another expression we’ve heard is ‘give till it hurts’. I believe a greater principle is the promise in scripture; ‘give and it will be given unto you’. Giving generates a lasting feeling of satisfaction that only taking can never produce.

The Cicadas have come and gone one more time. Maybe one of God’s purposes for sending them was to teach us another lesson or two about life. Whatever their purpose – it will be another thirteen years before we hear from them again. I must say – I’m not disappointed that they are gone.

Roy W. Harris is a marriage seminar and retreat speaker, minister, published author and journalist. He can be contacted by email at roy@royharris.info or visit his website at www.royharris.info.

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WLM - Fishing on the tailwaters of Center Hill Dam on the Caney Fork River

The Beauty of Center Hill Lake

FUN ON THE WATER DOESN'T HAVE TO BE A WORLD AWAY

By CHRIS TRAMEL

WLM - Fishing on the tailwaters of Center Hill Dam on the Caney Fork RiverSummer is here, and with it, the hot and humid temperatures that come with the harsh southern season. It’s a time for travel and vacations, but with the economic downturn felt across the nation, coupled with high gas and transportation costs, Middle Tennessee families may find a trip to the sun and surf of the Atlantic or Gulf Coasts out of their reach. Fun in the sun doesn’t have to be crossed off your family’s summer plans. Fact is, Middle Tennessee has some wonderful resources to take advantage of, and a week or more on the water can be only a few minutes and a few miles away.

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WLM - Cedars Preparatory Academy

School is in session year-round at Cedars Preparatory Academy

By ANGEL KANE

Drive down West Main Street in Lebanon these days and you will see that the school house (next to the public library) is in session.WLM - Cedars Preparatory Academy That’s because the doors of Cedars Preparatory Academy are open year round.

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WLM - Food for Thought

Food for Thought – Watermelon…. Summer’s Best Friend

WLM - Food for Thought Continue reading “Food for Thought – Watermelon…. Summer’s Best Friend”

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