Thursday, June 21, 2012

Father's Day Tribute

  On this Father's Day
              I wrote a tribute to
                       My Precious Husband and
                                  Your Dear Dad.

                  GOD'S MAN
Sunday Morning
    He sits now, in a pew with the congregation
        Hands in his lap, quiet.
He does not lead in worship,
    He is not rightly dividing the Word
        As he did  for som many  years.
He sings, the old hymns
    He follows, in his worn Word
        As it is read from the pulpit.
All those Sunday Worships he led are
    Now in the storehouse.
Time has taken it's toll on the body of
    This very strong Man of God.

His Heart still Yearns:
    For the Bride of Christ to stand     
         and be all she should be; To Be Strong!
    For the Lost, all around the world
    For the millions of children who never
         Were born because of the abomination
                of abortion.
    For the  young men, who are following
                     in the ministry
    For True Revival to sweet our land!

He Still
        Discerns The Word
        Seeks the will of God

His prayers still reach Heaven's Throne
    For those in need
        The ill, the hurt
                The lost and searching ones.
                       America and her leaders.

His Love is strong for the Church
    Praying daily for her health and restoration.
The Lord Leads
    This man is his Servant!
    He is ever open to His Father's will.

He is ever faithful
    This Elder Pastor, Shepherd, Husband
    Father, Grandfather, Teacher, Lead,



Friday, June 1, 2012

Georgia Cornbread

Who ever heard of such a thing?  I hadn't and nobody I've asked has either. 

But let me tell you, it is slap-yo-momma good! 

It doesn't look all that special.  Looks, however, can be quite deceiving.

I first encountered this delicacy at my local Farmer's Market in mid-November.  They always have all manner of goodies right at the counter where you have to look at them before you purchase the fruits and vegetables you buy to be healthy. 

I looked at the Rocket Man who was born and bred in Middle Georgia and asked if he had ever heard of it. He had not.  It doesn't look like cornbread and there was icing on it.  I have never yielded to the temptation, but the name...Georgia intrigued me that I spent $4.00 on a slice.

Y'all!  I'm telling you, it was worth it a twice the price.  Oh! My! Stars!!  As my teeth sunk in, the taste exploded in my mouth and I was in l-o-v-e! 

I came home and did some research.  I found several recipes.  This is the one I settled on.  You don't even want to know the nutritional values.  The numbers alone are enough to give you a heart attack!

Here you go.  By the way...I don't put icing on it, like the first piece I had.  Its almost overkill.

Georgia Cornbread
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar (I use dark brown)
4 beaten eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups of VERY finely chopped pecans.  Very, very finely chopped. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease and flour a 9 x 13 inch pan (I use Baker's Joy).  Or, lightly grease and flour standard muffin tins. 

Stir together the sugars, eggs and oil until smooth.
Stir in flour and vanilla till well blended.
Add finely chopped pecans and stir well until evenly mixed.

Spoon into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until done.

Be prepared to experience a taste that is pure luscious, delicious decadence.  And be sure you've taken your cholesterol medicine!

I haven't been able to find out where the name came from.  I'm wondering if it isn't called cornbread because it does have a similar texture with the chopped pecans.  Maybe pecans were easier to come by in Georgia than was cornmeal.  I just don't know.

Whatever its origin, I'm thrilled that I yielded to that particular temptation.  I'm thankful that pecans are rather costly, because it will remain a special treat.

Georgia Cornbread for my Georgia Cracker Rocket Man. 
I like that!


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Holday Stress

Seems to me that magazines, newspapers and yes! even blogs,
begin  in November with notes and instructions, tips and sure-fire ways…methods to  have a
stress-free holiday eason!

I am now a Senior Citizen---and spend plenty of time remembering Christmas Past.

The earliest stress at Christmas that I can recall was my Freshman year at Eldon High School.
   There was: {and I checked it out in the year book}

Choir at the Church Big Christmas Program
{back then teens sang in the adult choir and were expected to do more, really than the Adults}

Music Programs at School  
{Our Mixed Chorus sang at most of the churches in town... Big Program at School done twice.....Band Concert, Girls Sextet, Trio, and German Band playing at service clubs etc.   Marching Band played and marched in the  Jefferson City Christmas Parade}

Add to that Basketball Season was getting underway, and that was
big doings in Eldon!   Miss a ballgame?  Unheard of!!!  
We didn’t have football, so all eyes were on the gym.

I earned my little monies by baby sitting at that time. 
Young adults with small children were no different than now, parties call for babysitters.
You know, nothing compares to Christmas in a small town.

The next three years, more and more of the same,
but you need to add dating to the mix.  
I must admit, I liked that part!

Then there were New Years Eve  parties and I certainly did not want to miss
a single one.  I don't think I ever did, really. 

We generally had some snow at
that time of year, so there were also sledding parties,
ice skating without skates,
bon fires and hot chocolate and singing and fun.....and stress!   

I just had to be  ALL-IN all the time.  In everything!

Now let me tell you I think that is just the time I became a Stress Junkie!
I became a Mrs. when I was just 19.
Later that year, my Mr. joined the US Army.
We had a Baby Boy.
Man, that was some Thanksgiving!

Pvt. Buster was in Advanced Training and  didn’t know for sure that
 he would get any of the holidays off.
To our surprise, he was there the night after our son was born.
 He was there to take me home, in my Daddy's car, as we did not have any wheels of our own.
He even made it home on Christmas Eve.....right after local stores closed. 
Again, you gotta love a small town, because they opened up and sold him Christmas gifts for us!
That was a wee bit stressful!

That was the beginning for our family of many Thanksgiving and Christmases.
Pastoring a small country church.
Christmases on the move between Columbia, Green Grove, Eugene and Eldon.  
Celebrating Christmas with both families and our Church Family.
Getting Degree  from Missouri University

Then moving to Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky 
which brought us Christmas away from our parents and families.  
We had a big Christmas with our growing family, because the church we belonged to saw to it that there would be presents under the tree.
The second year there we had a Baby Girl to add to those two little boys.   

Now, if you want stress, here’s a formula. 
We had NO money:
Bob working nights and going to school days and I was babysitting and  taking in laundry

We had Christmas.
That was a new kind of stress!

He graduated and we moved to Pioneer Mission work.
Christmas plays-somebody had to write them-so I did.
Music-somebody had to play the piano and get kids singing- so  Rae and I did.
Decorating home and church
Making School Christmas programs
Delivering food to folks who were needy
Singing to Shut-ins
who wereliving in homes (before there were laws against such things)

Yep!  We had stress! 
 But you know what? 
 It was lovely!

Until our children all graduated from high Sshool and beyond
 there have always been Music Programs at our churches.
{There still are but I no longer sing in them}

 The children moved.
 To places in  Europe, Macedonia, Ohio, Missouri, Oklahoma
New York, Virginia, Alabama, Georgia,Tennessee, Pennsylvania etc. etc. etc.  

 I must add that we moved, the Preacher and I, to Alaska.
There,  we were REALLY separated from our children and parents.
We did not leave our church at Christmas because we needed to be there.
Our congregation was young and away from home.   
We felt they needed us.  You know what? 
It turned out they did.  

We spent those Holidays away from our blood kin,
 but oh!  the joy we had and celebrated with the Family of Christ. 

In all this there were parties, programs, plays and writing and staging and doing
and helping.    We did them all, just like when our children were the little ones. 

Our family is still scattered all over the USA.   We have little great-grands singing, acting,
playing piano, in programs in lots of states.   We are not able to be there to see them and applaud. 

So now, in this stage of life, the stress is so different.
But let me assure you, it is stress, all the same.
Now, you might say,
“Listen here, old lady! Aren’t you are retired?  You are supposed to be stress free!”
Is that what you think? 

Yeah!  Right!!!

In a way you are right.
Sure I have stress , but it is not the same type of stress.
My stress has to do with medical issues, with intangible things that come with age.

 I told my little tale above to be able to say this:
It has been my observation that we would lose something if
we did away with all holiday stress. 
 It is like being on edge.
Like letting loose the emotion that goes with the season,
with this stress comes
 happy tears
 just a bit of sadness
oooohs and  aaaahs
and that warm feeling of love
that flows over you when you behold the Christ Child in his manger bed

 Being a little edgy and being charmed  and awed anew
 with the wonder of little children in choir robes singing Silent Night.
Not being consumed with the material, but consumed with the Love of God,
the giving of the Word, the song of the angels, and the Love of God! 

You go ahead and try to make your holidays stress-free, if you like.
But, for what it’s worth, I'll take some stress and if you don't…
I think you’ll miss out on some rare emotions and blessings!!!


Saturday, June 18, 2011

On Father's Day

My Sweet Daddy. He is my first memory.  Strong, large hands reaching over the top of the crib to take me into his arms.  Holding me high up on his shoulder and singing, my chin buried into that spot where he broke his collarbone long before I was born. It made just the right little spot for me to rest my chin.  I slept in my crib in my parents' room for a long time, so this memory is probably from my toddler years.

I was born when he was in seminary and he worked nights loading trucks for Nabisco after going to school.  Mother tells that he would come home and ask if he could wake me up on occasion. He would say it had been several days since he'd seen my eyes.  She says she always agreed and he would pick me up, wake me, talk and sing to me and then rock me back to sleep.  I was a Daddy's girl from the get-go.  In fact, I have proclaimed myself to be the Queen of Daddy's girls. 

Daddy's Girl

I remember him taking me up in his arms to stand at the window during a raging storm.  I was so afriad, but he held me there and told me of God's love for me.  He assured me that God would take care of me and that he would also take care of me.  He sang, "I know whom I have believed" and he calmed me.  Now when the thunder rolls and the lightning crashes, I think of being held in My Sweet Daddy's arms and I stand at the window and know that God will care for me.  And that My Sweet Daddy loves me.

My earliest concept of God was so shaped by My Sweet Daddy. Loving. Meeting my every need. Always there in times of trouble. Expecting my best. Longing for my obedience. Swift discipline when necessary. Holding me in his arms. Providing for my safety and well being. How easy it was for me to believe in God and  that my Heavenly Father loved me when I had such an earthly father! 

As I grew older, time and time again My Sweet Daddy provided wisdom and encouragement to me. In my darkest personal hours, he was there. When a doctor told me that I probably had what he would call 'products of conception' and suggested an abortion, it was My Sweet Daddy I called. Months later, when that beautiful product of Annie...was born, My Sweet Daddy was there.

I remember when I was a military wife with my husband on a remote tour of duty, My Sweet Daddy would come and get my toddler son to go get a coke or perhaps get gas in the car.  He seldom called ahead, because I was almost always at home.  He would knock on the door and ask if he could borrow Jamie for a few hours.  And it was always when I was at my wits end with a toddler and a newborn and feeling very alone.  Silly me.  I am never alone when My Sweet Daddy is near.

I remember when my marraige was falling apart and my parents were living in Alaska!  Is there anywhere farther away from Alabama than Alaska?  Didn't seem so at the time.  My phone rang and it was My Sweet Daddy.  He was flying down for a meeting and if he added one leg to his flight, he would earn a free ticket.  Did I mind if he came and spent a few extra days with me?  Did I mind??  Just when I needed him most, there he was! 

Then, when the failed marraige ended in divorce.  I wanted to take my maiden name back.  I asked my Daddy if that would be okay with him, and he was so pleased. I have the sweetest letter that he wrote to me, telling me how proud he was of that name, and proud that it was once again mine.   In time, when I met the Rocket Man and we became seriously involved and talked of marraige, My Sweet Daddy welcomed him to the family and has been nothing but gracious and kind and inclusive both of my Rocket Man and also his girls and family.

No matter what the occasion, no matter how dark the day, no matter how wonderful the news, I still call him.  When I call and say, "Daddy?  Its Mollianne!"  he always answers, "Hello, Doll!"  Oh, how my heart is warmed and there is a peace that falls upon me.

Every man I meet is measured against My Sweet Daddy.  Very few make the mark, but some have.  Rocket Man does.  He possesses the same sort of  integrity, honor, wisdom and courage that my Daddy portrays.  I knew he was the real deal the day he reminded me of Daddy in those qualities. 

Still Daddy's Girl

Daddy's step is not so quick as it used to be.  His hands are weaker than those hands that lifted me from my crib after a night of loading boxes for Nabisco when he was in seminary.  He is learning to live with a recent diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease.  He lives with some degree of pain in his back almost all the time.  His years show more than they ever have.  But that intellect and wit and love are still there.  He is still, and always will be My Sweet Daddy.

While I won't be with him on Father's Day this year, my heart will be there.  Because there is a part of my heart that belongs to My Sweet Daddy. Him and only him.

As I write this, and think about the love we have shared, tears are falling from eyes and splashing on the keyboard.  They are tears of thankfulness for such as Daddy as mine. Tears of gratitude for the love that we share.  Tears of awe for the person he is and has been.  Tears of joyful remembrance for all the wonderful memories I have of and with him..  Tears from a tender heart of a Daddy's girl who has never known a world where he was not.  Tears of grief  for my friends and for my family whose Daddy's are no longer with us.

So I close with this.  Always this.  I love you, My Sweet Daddy.

Happy Father's Day.


One of the best things about  My Sweet Daddy is that he married My Amazing Mother!  She is a blog post, a story, a novel and a technicolor movie unto herself!  If you dont' know ought to!  What a woman.  And what a love story they share.  Father's Day isn't complete without thanking them both for showing us what a strong marriage could and should be.  I love you both!  More and more!

Monday, March 28, 2011

An Elopement Tale!

Bob and Charlotte then
That tornado went through Jackson Tennessee sounding like a huge freight train. On the third floor of Lovelace Hall, one of the woman's dorms at Union University, we were rounded up and pushed to the ground floor. We couldn't hide in the basement it was unusable. That old dorm made it, and morning dawned bright and clear. There is no place like Tennessee after a storm. Our trees were not down and the grass was so green and the mud! Oh, my! The mud!

Friday is a good day on college campuses I think. I went to two schools and we all loved Friday. I was in my room after lunch, and the monitor called upstairs [no such a thing as an intercom system in 1952] that I had a gentleman caller. I grabbed a scarf and flew down the stairs because I did not want to keep him waiting.....there were too many pretty Baptist girls looking for a Preacher-boy.

We went to the movies and walked slowly back to campus. We had already taken our pennies, nickels, and dimes and purchased our wedding rings. Plans for a Christmas wedding had been cancelled, and now it was spring, and my name was still Younger.

After spending a couple of hours in the Library, where I could go without permission, we slipped out the back door and left campus [without permission; a big no-no] and made our way, half a block to Pat and Mike's! All college kids should know a Pat and Mike...they were the best. [And could they make Boston Cream Pie!]

As we walked in Mike said: "How long are you two going to wait?" I really don't know what Bobbie said...I just walked to our favorite booth. After a few minutes we had our Boston Cream Pie and an Orange Crush. Jerry Green joined us. After some joking around, Jerry said, "If you don't marry that gal, I am going to give her a try!" Now, I am sure Jerry was just joking, but on the way back to the dorm, Bob asked me if I would like to go to Mississippi and get married…TOMORROW!!!!! I think I jumped into his arms, and hang the rules, I kissed him. For once, I was speechless!

We agreed to meet at the cafeteria at breakfast and finalize plans. You see, it was past time to be in the dorm, and I was always late and pushing the line. I sure did not want trouble now.

I thought that morning would never come. No sleep for this little eighteen year old girl. I never gave a thought to the ramifications. We were throwing caution to the wind. We were getting M-a-r-r-i-e-d! Married! That's all I really wanted.

That night, another tornado made its way across northern Mississippi, uprooting trees and laying down fences.   Saturday dawned and I was ready!

We met at breakfast. Bob had the Greyhound schedule. I had standing permission to go to Memphis to see relatives. No problem there. I had to get my white suit cleaned and there was time. Where was that Navy blouse? Need a purse to look somewhat like it belongs....details, details, details. They were not a problem...I was running on excitement!

So we boarded the bus. Oh, that bus-ride! There were folks with cages containing live chickens and hoes and rakes, and groceries of all kinds with boxes of undetermined things. It was strange to Bob but, I was born in Tennessee and lived in Oakland when it was a little country town, used to ride the bus to go to the movies on Saturday afternoon. Of course I rode the train mostly...but it contained the same sort of things.

Keep in mind a bus ride through West Tennessee and Northern Mississippi in 1952 was not even remotely as it is now. We stopped at cross roads, at lanes, at driveways, and even just on the side of road to let folks off and on. In those days, one rode the bus to grocery shop or to the doctor or just to visit because there were not so many cars. The tornado had flattened barns and out buildings and the most incredible thing.....took the feathers off chickens. It was a funny ride, and I mean "ha-ha" funny. We laughed and simply enjoyed the trip.

As we drove into Corinth we passed a beautiful columned Southern Baptist Church, I suggested we get married there. There was a big hotel on the square and we checked in. The town was FULL of folks, all the stores doing booming business and the Court House was open for business (on a Saturday!). That was a good thing!

We walked up the steps to the Court House, and some old men, "The Spit and Whittle Club" simply looked up and pointed the way to the license office. I wondered how on earth they knew what we were there for. Corinth Mississippi was known as the "marriage capitol" of the south.

Bob got a taxi to take us to the church, at 2:00 P.M. after lunch at a little hole in the wall place on the square, and change of clothes we were on our way. Did not go to the pretty brick church we saw, instead we went to the parsonage of a smaller church in town, where the taxi driver went to church. Rev. Smith performed the ceremony, with no witnesses, and in a few minutes, maybe 15, I was at last Mrs. Bobbie Buster!!

And then there was more. Eloping has its good side and then there is the other, not so good side. My Daddy had to be told, my mother had to cry. We had to tell Bob's folks, too. We couldn't tell it till we could get a room in the Married Wing of Adams Hall. That was two or three weeks later...and I cried myself out of tears, almost.

That is Part of the Story........the rest to be played out in family, and now here we are 59 years later. Those that said "It will never last" and "that Charlotte is too flighty" were just blowing in the wind. The songs of our courtship are still sweet to us. We would sing "To Each His Own", "My Happiness", but most of all we loved the song "I'd Rather Have Jesus".

I would not change a thing. The hard times, and we had some, only make the good times "gooder". At the time, what I thought was love, and it was, is absolutely nothing compared to what we have now. God has blessed us over and over. I am so thankful and grateful and full of praise at his continuous love and guidance.

Wonder what the next years hold? Cannot tell but I can guarantee that there will be love aplenty and some hard times and good times and laughter and tears and there will be Bobbie and Charlotte Buster!

Bob and Charlotte now


Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Island

Have you ever lived on an island?

I never had until January of this year.

At that time we inhabited a very nice little
island located on Sunset Strip in Eldon Missouri.
Bet ya' didn't know there is an island in Eldon.
We came to this "Island" when Bob begin a time
of weakness, virtigo, and illness.
He was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in February.
 'Nuff said about our reasons for being on our Island.

Island living is not bad. Our island is inhabited by "The Man"
and yours truly.   We have running water, TV, Cell phone
and Land line, and a PC all connected to the "main land"
and our family. That is a real plus to" Island" living.
The best part of "Island" living is
the time we have with each other...
time for "remembering" and for watching TV together,
for laughter, for Bible Reading and
prayer with lot of sleep. You would not believe how
we have solved all the world's problems.
We have access to fresh food, grocery stores
as well as the Drug Store [this is important] and Doctor's Office.

Food, you ask???? Goodness, I have baked bread, biscuits,
cornbread, cinnamon rolls, and made dressing several times.
I read my cookbooks and been on Web sites, then made lots
of new things. We have eaten well, believe me.
Course there have been breaks, like KFC
and McDonalds and Subway.
That necitates a quick trip to the "mainland"

We have had some visitors. I will admit they have been few
 and somewhat far between,however we love it when they happen in.
Our Children come when they can get their "boats" headed this way.
Since they all live on the "main land" and have jobs
and children, they are not "docking" often.
They are in daily communication,
and would be here if we needed them.

Island Living is best described as being isolated --- in some ways.
Unless we have visitors "sail in" we really
do not know what was happening in our "home town".
That is the reason I renewed our weekly "rag" a couple of weeks ago.

All our active lives, [before "real retirement"] revolved
around our Church. Bob was a Pastor/Preacher,
and I might add an excellent one!
That was completely candid,
I would not be prejudiced.
We loved our " Calling".
Seems strange to not know what is happening
down at the Church-house.
We get the weekly bulletin on the
Web, and sometimes hear from our friends, certainly is not the same.

Just a part of "Island" living.

Our goal is to make it to the "Main Land"
for more than Doctor's Visits.
Our hope and plan is to be back in Sunday School
and Church. To go out to dinner with friends.
To take rides to the places around here that we love:
Eugene, Mary's Home,
Down along the Saline,
Lake of the Ozarks, Out to "C"
and Weaver' name a few.

To go to our see our friends who are "shut-in"
and we love to visit.

Those things will come.
 And when they do----

We will leave our Island Home and once again,
live on the Main Land.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Good News from Home

We are walking down a new path in our family.  My Sweet Daddy has been diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease.  As we are collectively figuring out exactly what this means, praying from distances and often feeling every inch of the miles that separate the miles between us...Mother continues to be the glue that holds us all together. 

Daddy is not the first in our family to receive this diagnosis.  His mother, Grandma Buster, suffered with Parkinson's.  As his health declined in recent months, our concerns grew.  I was there for a week after Christmas and left with a heavy heart.  Something was wrong!.  It was more than simple aging or rebounding from radiation he received 18 months ago. 

As I talked to Mother, almost daily, and kept in close sommunication via email, my concerns grew.  Their winter was long and dreadful.  They were snowed in for days on end.  Daddy wasn't himself.  When I talked to him on the phone, he wasn't cutting up or teasing me.  Something was wrong.  And I felt and feel so powerless to do anything.

In February, I had a bit of minor surgery on my finger and as I was talking to Mother on the way home from the process, I sensed that things really were not good at all.  The next morning, I got a call to say that they had gone to see their Doctor.  Dr. Carr sent them straight to the hospital for testing. 

The initial diagnosis was Parkinson's.  Something was wrong.  But now we could arm ourselves.  Daddy with medications and the rest of us with information.  He has improved with meds and under Mother's ever vigilant care. 

This morning, something wonderful happened.  For the first time in 2 months, my Sweet Daddy went to church.  Maybe your Daddy doesn't go to church every Sunday, but my Sweet Daddy is a preacher and has spent his life in the service of the pulpit.  Not just going to worship, but leading worship.  In the past 13 years, during his retirement, he has been on staff part time at a local church.  He retired from that back in October.  And until he felt too bad to do it, he was still preaching the Word on Sundays, filling in around their town when needed.

Today, the sunshine is just a bit brighter and the songs of praise in my own church just a bit more joyful to me.  I didn't know for sure until this afternoon, but I had a sneaking suspicion that my Sweet Daddy was going to be in His Father's house for Sunday Worship.  And he was.

Here is the note that was sent from Mother, the Matriarch of us, to let us know that he had once again gone to the House of the Lord on Sunday.

This day dawned beautifully but cold. 
 But there was nothing this morning to keep us from Worship at our Church with our Friends together. Bob was in Worship this morning at First Baptist  for the first time since January 9!

 I could not keep from smiling....Folks seemed so glad to see him. When most of your life has been spent in the Meeting House" or living in close proximity, it was THE place to rejoice.

Big Daddy/ Papa/Bob is doing much better..Today marks the fifth day---in a row of feeling good. Been months since that could be said.  Still has some back problems, get another shot on Friday. The meds for that "ol Parkinsons" [Grandma Busters term] are working. Bob can tell his stories and talk without hesitation, most of the time. The Doctor has upped the med for that and it should get even better. All this is good!

God bless you and yours.