Sunday, April 16

Jesus Lives and Gives Peace, Connection to God

"Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene went to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb...."

"... now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven demons."

"....She turned around and saw Jesus standing there, and did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, 'Woman why are you weeping? Who are you seeking?'

She, supposing him to be the gardener, said to him, 'Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him and I will take him away.'

Jesus said to her, 'Mary!'

She turned and said to him, 'Rabboni,' which is to say, Teacher."

A lot of people in a variety of locations saw & spoke with Jesus after his death, burial and Resurrection.  His spirit is alive and vibrant in me, although I have never seen Him.

The Bible promises that we will, again, be mocked and persecuted for our faith in Christ.  It has begun here in America and really scares me for our future, especially that of my kids and grandkids.  But the peace that passes all understanding is comfort.

As I age, and as I come to know & experience Jesus more, I regret the years I wasted not witnessing, not telling others about Him.

"And if I weep, let it be as a man who is longing for his home."  - Rich Mullins lyrics

Thursday, March 9

Anti-Inflammatory Turmeric Tea

How are you doing with all your New Years resolutions?  Are you participating in my #52Weeks of change?  I am still participating, I just haven't been posting about it.

Around the third or fourth week, I added this anti-inflammatory tea to my morning routine.  Honestly, I haven't noticed a change in my health yet.  Add the following to your cuppa boiling water:

  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger powder
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper if you can tolerate it, I hate it
  • juice of 1/2 lemon, I usually add more
  • 2 tsp. raw honey
Google's all over this, so you can easily find alternative recipes.  You can use more ginger, but I'm not a fan, so I keep mine minimal.  Ditto with the pepper.

If you recall, on week one of my personal #52Weeks, I began Yoga.  Well, I'm still doing it, but I haven't improved much because first my son had a burst appendix and I spent a lot of time with him during his 5-day stay at the hospital.  Then I was in a bad accident on January 23rd in which I had bruised ribs, a bruised nose (I think maybe broken) and a badly sprained wrist.  The doctors thought the wrist was broken in two places and they put it in a cast at first.  Then another doctor viewed it differently and put me in a splint.  I still have another week in a wrist splint from that.  While six of us in the vehicle were injured, one friend died from her injuries five days after the accident.  It was an absolutely horrific week and I still can't believe she's gone.  It's been a tragic start to the new year for my friends and family.

In addition to the Yoga and turmeric tea, the weekly changes include being deliberate and intentional with love, forgiveness, gratitude, & releasing bitterness.  The #52Weeks of change will include abstract changes like these as well as the concrete, physical changes.  Go for it!  Join me with #52Weeks of change in 2017. 

Popinjay: Betrayal


be - 'tra (-e)l \ noun

Betrayal's root is betray, which comes from the Middle English word bitrayen — meaning "mislead, deceive." Betrayal has to do with destroying someone's trust, possibly by lying.
Synonyms:  perfidy, treachery, treason, knavery, subversiveness.

'per - fe - de \ noun

The noun perfidy means "deceitfulness" or "treachery," so it's not just being mean, but deliberately betraying a trust. The Latin root of perfidy is made up of per, or "through," and fidem, or "faith." So in order for perfidy to happen, there has to have first been a sense of faith in place, which was then broken or betrayed.

Sunday, February 12

Cleaning Up the Canoe Trail at Aiken State Park

I was thrilled to hear that my old friend Doug Busbee cleaned up the Aiken State Park Canoe Trail on the South Fork of the Edisto River again so I can kayak through again.  I went with him one time when he did this after a hurricane, I know it can be dangerous and definitely time consuming.  I am very appreciative of his efforts.

Guest Writer:  Doug Busbee, Busbee Truck Parts

It was truly a privilege and honor to have Jacob Chavious driving the boat yesterday for me as we cleared some trees out of the canoe trail on the South Edisto river at the Aiken State Park. 

Jacob is a direct descendant of the Edisto Indians that have paddled this river for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years. Jacobs family is the closest thing that I am aware to being true native Americans in Eastern Aiken County. 
At one time in the early 1700s the Edisto river and adjacent lands were deeded to the Edisto Indians by the King of England. The Edisto Indians were known for their oarsman and guiding capabilities in the black water swamps of the Edisto and brought many trading parties up the river deep into the midlands of South Carolina. 
Jacob and his family are still known locally to be some of the best fishermen, oarsmen and possessor's of infinite knowledge of the black water jewel that we call the Edisto!

If one should want to know more about the Edisto Basin's native people check out the Beaver Creek Indians that meet in Salley, SC once a month. Jacob, Thank you once again for sharing your time and teaching me the value of conservation of our most precious resource, Water! You did a great job!

More of Doug Busbee on Planet Pookie:

North Carolina's Original Hilbilly
Doug-Busbee-South-Carolina Nice-To-Meetcha
In Which Doug Baaaas Extraordinarialy Like a Sheep
In Which Doug Had to Taste the Glacier Runoff
In Which Doug Has a Slight Steering Malfunction
How to Cast Net Shrimp and Everyone Yelled at Me for Promoting Putting Lead in Your Mouth
Busbees Gatorade Duel 1
In Which Doug and I Compare Views of Alaska at 36,000 Feet

Friday, February 10

Endangered Species: surviving the attack on America's middle class, by Steve Maslar

"If history repeats itself, we are on the verge of tremendous opportunity, as people awaken to reality, becoming increasingly resolute and informed.  In other words America's, and consequently, the world's plight is serious indeed, but it need not be ruinous if we focus on the real problems.

We will endure hardship, the magnitude of which few Americans alive today have ever seen, in the near future based on actions in the past. 

We cannot avoid significant pain at this point. However, we can take the system down together, safely and intelligently, and rebuild it to something better than ever before. Alternatively, we can deny reality or muddle in despair until the psychotic ruling class destructively run the world's greatest culture into the ground and take everybody else with them."

 - From Endangered Species: surviving the attack on America's middle class, by Steve Maslar.

We are currently looking for a publisher, editor, or literary agent. 

Contact me for more information or for a copy to read. This book is not just the author's opinion, it is full of documentation and facts.

Paralysis Recovery Specialist Ken Bryant to Donate Services to Aiken County Disabled

Paralysis Recovery Specialist Ken Bryant, a well-known therapist among the spinal cord injury community, will visit Aiken, SC, March 6 – 10, 2017 to provide his healing touch, at very little expense, to those paralyzed from spinal cord injuries or strokes. 

Bryant has experienced a 100% success rate with restoring some feeling or movement among his clients.  His method involves restoring or rerouting signals from the brain to the muscles, he does not repair a damaged spinal cord.  Bryant stated that when he works on a set of muscles, it takes two to five minutes to turn the muscles back on.  “You can see the change immediately,” he said, adding, “All we’re doing is turning muscles on, then they (his clients) have to build their strength up over time.  I have a God given gift to un-paralyze people.  I’ve never once seen where it hasn’t worked.” 
Bryant’s program usually consists of a five-day program at his Pinellas Park, FL location, working only a couple of hours each day with his clients.  The clients then continue strength training on their own with a personal trainer at a gym near home.  In Aiken, he will offer one session per client, un-paralyzing one muscle or muscle group, in an effort to see as many clients as time permits.  He has previously offered this program in Oregon, Cleveland, Toledo and more.

Adrian Steele, General Manager of Workout Anytime FitnessCenter on Richland Avenue in Aiken has generously donated the use of their gym and equipment for the week Ken Bryant is here.  Bryant invites anyone with a paralysis, ages 6 months and above to come receive his touch at Workout Anytime during the week of March 6 – 10, 2017.  Limited space is available and appointments must be made by February 24.  For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call Vickie Staley at 803.571.3630. 
Bryant is volunteering his services and asking only that his travel expenses are paid and that his assistant receive her fees.  Donations and minimal client fees will go towards these expenses.  Fundraising has begun to cover the car rental, hotel fees, and meals.  Any additional funds raised will go towards reducing the client’s fee.  The Ken Bryant Project of Aiken County has been established for financial donations to cover the expenses.  The Law Office of Mr. Adrian L. Falgione has generously kicked-off the fundraising by donating $1,000. 

Vickie Staley, a Wagener resident and founder of the Ken Bryant Project of Aiken County, can testify to Ken Bryant’s success.  Staley’s son, Tyrell, became a C5-C6 quadriplegic after a car accident a few years ago.  In December of 2016, Tyrell spent a week with Bryant in Florida.  Staley reports about that visit, “Ken massaged the muscles to wake them up, he started in Tyrell’s back.  I thought ‘What is he doing?’  There were no machines, nothing electrical, it was a gift from his hands.  This man truly has a gift.”

Tyrell was not able to sit and balance himself before going to Florida, or hold the water bottle in his hand or drink from it.   He was not able to abduct or adduct his leg muscles.  After visiting Ken Bryant, Tyrell can do all of this and more.  He is now building his strength by working out weekly with Cole Lee at Workout Anytime, followed by an hour of Physical Therapy with Stephanie Vaughn at Sports Plus, Aiken.  Tyrell’s current goal is to stand up with a walker in 2017. 

Staley wants other people with paralysis to have the opportunity for healing without the huge cost associated with a week-long trip to Florida and Bryant’s in-house fees.  She invites you to join her.
There are many ways you can help.  You can spread the word to let people with spinal cord injuries or paralysis from strokes know that they have the opportunity to meet with Ken Bryant in Aiken.  You can donate the cost for a meal or a night’s stay at the hotel, or simply donate any sum to the Ken Bryant Project of Aiken County.  Contact Vickie Staley at 803.571.3630 for donation information or to schedule an appointment with Ken Bryant. 

Thursday, February 9

7 Lamps Were Burning by Linda N. Merryman

South Carolina resident Linda N. Merryman has completed her first novel which has just been released in paper book or eBook format on Amazon.  7 Lamps Were Burning, the first book in the paranormal fantasy Cloudwalker Series, is a story about hope and redemption as Sasha, a young woman of Native American and Russian descent and the steward of Pandora’s Jar, has the key to saving the Cloudwalkers, an ancient fallen race.  Can Sasha bring hope back to mankind and redemption to seven earthbound spirits while dealing with her own issues of insecurity?

Linda Merryman, a native of Houston, Texas, has been a South Carolina resident for a couple of decades.  Having raised her five children here, she is now helping out with her grandchildren. 

Always a big reader, Merryman admits to being more dreamy and creative than organized.  If she isn’t writing or reading, then she’s drawing or painting and one time she went through a singing phase, but writing is what tugs at her the most.

While carpooling to work with her daughter in 2012, Merryman began writing the Cloudwalker series on napkins at the restaurant where her daughter worked.  She graduated to writing in notebooks and finally, a computer.  The first story practically wrote itself, such was the flow of the muse.  Several minor characters demanded bigger roles and the story spilled forth into two, then three books.  

Order your copy from Amazon and you won’t have to read long before you recognize the landscape.  Fellow Carolinians will recognize the Piggly Wiggly, routes along I-20, and the Harbison area of Columbia.  In book two, Merryman promises, the Little Bake Shoppe in rural Wagener, SC will introduce us to a not-so-nice character. (I love the Bake Shoppe!)

Find out more at  Follow the series on Facebook/CloudwalkersOfficial.  Follow Linda Merryman on Twitter @DreamWeaving3 and search for her on Google+.  Merryman is a disciple of Christ in her personal life and the book is family friendly, a good read for your youth.

Sunday, January 1

Mariah Carey New Year's Eve Fail Exemplifies 2016

Mariah Carey's epic fail  (in which she lost her earpiece, couldn't hear the music, was trying to lipsync, walked around in a daze, whined about not having her own holiday, etc.) at the 2016 Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve party in NYC was to be expected, it perfectly closed out 2016 with the cliche' she graciously tweeted that best represents 2016:

We all agree:  2016 was HORRIBLE.

The saving grace of 2016, for me, was the birth of another grandchild and addition of another son-in-law.  Those two redeeming factors save 2016 for me.  I hope you have a few redeeming factors of your own.

But as we move into 2017, I remind you that changes begin with you.  With me.  Each of us have to change something to make our lives better.

Join me is making some shifts in your personal life, your spiritual life and your civic life this year.  Stick an F in Mariah's ubiquitous phrase and run with it:
  Shift Happens.

We have 52 weeks ahead of us.  Join me for the next 52 weeks by creating a positive, healthy shift in your behavior each week.  Keep it private or share it with the hashtag

My first change for week one is to start yoga.  I've spent two horrible years on the couch crocheting and crying.  I've lost almost everything.  I was a stay-at-home mom and housewife.  My kids grew up and moved out, followed by my husband.  We sold the house in which they were raised.  I'm about to lose one of my part-time jobs.  I'm 52 with little education, little experience and a chronic terminal illness.  I'm discovering most people don't want to hire me.  Yoga seems like a great place to start -- stretch, open up and strengthen my core.  My second week, I will add releasing bitterness and my third week I will revive love and forgiveness.  Beyond that, we'll see what enfolds.

Join me, please.   Because errrbody else has left me, ha!  NO, JK, simmer down, JK!! (there's that bitterness!)....  of course not, join me because you deserve it, we deserve it and America will change if each one of us makes a few shifts, baby!  (like.... 52 shifts)

Who loves you?!!

Saturday, December 24

Phone Alarm Clock Replaces Sticky Notes

I have a really good tip for you, and by you I mean Uncle Doug.

If you currently have to write everything down so you don't forget it and you have millions of sticky notes all over your house, start using your phone's alarm clock as a sticky note.

I title my alarm with whatever I would have written on a sticky note. The advantages are numerous... I create no trash, I don't lose it, the alarm factor helps me get it done...

This really has been working great except I cannot have a long title on my alarm so I have to do a lot of abbreviating.

Try it!

Saturday, October 15

FLW Norris Lake Invitational 2016 Jimmy Wilson Co-Angler

So my friend and mechanic Retired Master Sergeant Jimmy Wilson, USAF, has gone to Clinton, TN to spend the week fishing with the pros.  Not a bad gig, right?  “I’ll probably put 40 hours on my boat just this week, that’s more than most people do in a year.” Wilson told me in an interview last week.  “I’m actually pretty pumped about it,” he added.  That has to be the best 40-hour work week I’ve ever heard of.  And?  I think he’s edging for a new boat.

The FLW (Fishing League Worldwide) Norris Lake Invitational is a 3-day tournament October 20 – 22, 2016, one of seven regular season events in the FLW Tour.  The FLW Tour consists of pro-anglers and co-anglers, the best of which will proceed to the 2017 Forrest Wood Cup to be held on Lake Murray late Summer, 2017.  During the competition, the anglers will accumulate weight of the fish caught each day and the top ten on Saturday night will advance to Sunday.  The winner of that will go to the Forrest Cup.

Jimmy and Susan Wilson are spending the week on Norris Lake as he uses three days for practice, followed by the tournament.  Along with Susan, there should be around 300 – 500 spectators, many of which are looking for a photo-op or autograph with the pro-angler of their choice.  The event will present fishing seminars and vendors, very similar to a NASCAR event.
Jimmy Wilson has been fishing semi-pro since 2009 in the BFL.  He received an email invite to the FLW Norris Lake Invitational this past August.  Wilson is sponsored by Kistler Rods and P-Line and has a 2015 Triton 20 TrX boat. 

 “So,” I asked Jimmy, “do you have a pit crew to fix your boat during the competition?”
“On the BFLs, I have to fix the boat myself.” Wilson boasted, “But on the tour level, the manufacturers will be there to fix it on the spot.”  He may or may not have said “boo-ya” under his breath.  The guy was pumped and I was getting there myself.  While he won’t have a pit crew, he will have a marshal on board to keep him honest.  Each FLW angler has a marshal on board.
The FLW Walmart Tour Norris Lake Invitational will be televised on an NBC Sports Channel and it will be live streamed on  Take time to check in on Jimmy Wilson throughout the weekend, this is a pretty big deal, the weight check-ins will be live.  You can click the “Results” link at the FLW site as well and look him up by name, too.
Enjoy the rest of my interview below.
VS:  Tell me about fishing as a sport, a national sport.
JW:  It’s vastly becoming as big as NASCAR.  It’s not a slow progression, either.  Big companies are getting involved like Walmart, T-H Marine, Folgers, Tide.  I’m a little late in life to get started in this.   Most of the new guys coming into this are probably 18 – 25.  They’re starting to have college fishing teams now, too, so they’re getting recruited out of the colleges.  Clemson for the past couple of years has won the championship with their teams.
“I’ve been fishing since I was a kid.  I just love fishing, it’s relaxing,  you get to get away.  I don’t have to think about the shop, about the bills.  I get to meet pretty good people.  Most of the fishermen are down to earth, Christian, good people.  I’ve met some really good people in the fishing industry.”
VS:  What are things to consider in the sport, what affects your scoring?
JW:  The weather!  You don’t want it to be bright and sunny.  You want some cloud, a little wind.  Rain’s great.  Don’t want sun and no clouds, that makes for the toughest fishing in the world because the fish go deep, stick tight to cover, and go underneath logs and rocks.  It’s hard to catch them like that.  I can catch them, but it’s one of those days where you might get just five bites and you better catch all of them.
The skill:  Part is understanding what the fish are doing for that particular time of year.  In the springtime, when the water gets to the right temperature, the fish come up the water to spawn.  So then you know that, at that time of year, you need to fish shallow.  Well, after they’re done spawning, they go out deep.  The hotter it gets, the deeper they go.  And sometimes when it gets real hot, they come back shallow, I don’t know why, but they do.  Different times of year dictates where and how you fish and what kind of bait you use.
Now there is a little luck in there, too.  If you can’t find the fish, but you know that you can catch one, you just aren’t in the right place at the right time.  The best thing you can do is to cover a lot of water.  Stop in a spot, make a few casts, and if you don’t get a bite, it’s time to move on.  
VS:  Do you have a fish finder?
JW:  Yes, I have two fish finders.  I have two Hummingbird fish finders/gps combined.  That’s the crucial part of it:  You have to be able to find those bait fish.  You can idle around and once you start seeing those bait fish, there’s other fish there as well.  And you’re looking for different structures, you’re looking for different brush piles and piles of rock….   You can see all that.  The sonar has become so sophisticated that you can drop a car off in a lake, I can run over it in my boat, and I can see the car.  It’s pretty detailed. 
I also have an H2 Hydro Wave, its’ a bait fish mimicker.  For example, say, Clark Hill, has blueback herring.  Well, they make a certain type of splashing noise depending on what they are doing.  If they are spawning, they have a certain type of noise, if they’re schooling, they have a certain type of noise.  Well this thing is just an amplified speaker that makes the noise of those fish.  And the theory is that it will bring the other fish to where it is.  It works, I’ve watched it!  The fish swim right up to my speaker.
VS:  Is there anything you’re not allowed to use or do in the FLW Tour?
JW:  You can’t use any live bait.  You can’t troll.  If you’re sight fishing (usually that’s in the spawning period because you can see them spawning) you have to hook them inside the mouth.  Any other time, if you snag it while you’re fishing, you’re good, as long as you’re not sight fishing.  You can’t use pontoon boats; you can’t use john-boats.  It has to be a bass boat with a live well to keep the fish alive.  That’s really the most important thing – to keep them alive so we can turn them loose and let somebody else catch them.  We practice catch and release.  
VS:  Who’s the big name?  Who’s the “Arnold Palmer” of fishing?
JW:  You got Shaw Grigsby, Bryan Thrift (he just won the last tournament).   Wesley Strader -- he’s been around for years, a good man.  We’re all fishing against each other.  One on one, Mano a Mano.
VS:  Looking back, what do you wish you had done different to be more prepared for this moment?
JW:  Not gotten into drag racing and fished when I wanted to.  I got into drag racing when I was 18 years old.  I really couldn’t afford a bass boat; bass boats are expensive. 
VS:  What do you tell the little kid who is fishing and who wants to pursue it?
JW:  Follow your dreams.  Enjoy yourself and have fun with it. 
Jimmy Wilson was born in Cincinnati and raised “all over the United States.”  Wilson has three brothers, one of which is deceased, and one sister.  His mother is living in Ohio; his father is deceased.  Wilson and his wife Susan have 8 grandchildren, all of which have the fishing bug.