Monday, April 20, 2015

Aunt Rosie Deaton's All American Slum-Guillion-The Best

(book cover by ernest Matthew Mickler)

I love to look through old recipe books. Ya never know what you will find, either resulting in a "I just have to try that" - or a good laugh. Either way, recipe books can be fun, educational and even make you miss your mama's cooking.

Many years ago while living in Florida, (actually I "had to" ..... thank you U.S. Navy) I purchased a book, White Trash Cooking by Ernest Matthew Mickler.  Not only does it have some of the very best of southern cooking, it has a bevy of southern home photos by the author. Many are from "grandmother's favorites", or the best from Uncle Willie.

Thankfully, I left Florida long ago, and have my feet planted firmly in the deep south  ... and still love White Trash Cooking.

This recipe is easy and you 'll be asking for "seconds."

Aunt Rosie Deaton's All-American Slum-Guillon (The Best)

Cook some elbow macaroni - plenty. Brown minced onion (stronger the better), hamburger and/or bacon in a skillet. Add 1 cup of whole Delmonte tomatoes, salt, pepper and all the macaroni you got. Simmer til you can't stand it any more, then take off the fire and dive in. This is especially good when you're in a hurry-up day like when there's a funeral, an auction, or a flag burning at the Legion Hall.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Honoring the Unknown

Today while my husband and I were taking tombstone photos for Find a Grave, I came across something of interest.  What I presume was the oldest section of the New Hope Baptist Church Cemetery are three rows of broken tombstones. All of those tombstones, as noted in the above photo, have the top sections broken off - with only a new inches emerging from the ground. All are no longer readable, and the names of the souls are known only to God. Originally, I thought perhaps these were the foot stones - but a closer look revealed, this is what is left of the original stone. This post is to remember these people - though we do not know who they, but pray all are at rest. This cemetery is located in Clay County, North Carolina.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Downsizing and Going Paperless

I am currently "down-sizing" and clearing my genealogy office of paper notes, scraps, and census pages I have entered into my Legacy program. If you have the same problem, and feel like the "paperwork" is about to bury you - consider a general clean out. I have been amazed at the amount of junk I cleared out so far. Special thanks to Dick Eastman on this excellent reminder. 

Warning: This article contains personal opinions.
I have written a number of times about the advantages of a paperless lifestyle. Genealogists seem especially attached to paper. We often save photocopies of old records, old books, and much, much more. I once bought a four-drawer filing cabinet to store all my paper. A few years later, I purchased a SECOND four-drawer filing cabinet. I purchased probably more than one hundred dollars’ worth of file folders over the years. I photocopied and photocopied and stored all the paper in neatly-arranged folders.
Sadly, I almost never opened the drawers to retrieve anything. When I did attempt to find something, I often couldn’t locate what I wanted because the document was filed in some obscure method. For instance, the marriage record I might be seeking often was filed under the husband’s surname, not under the wife’s maiden name.

Like a recovering alcoholic, I have since broken my addiction to paper. I now live about 98% paper-free, and I love it. Almost every piece of paper that enter my house is either (1.) discarded immediately or (2.) scanned into my computer, and then the paper is discarded. I don’t ever want to go back to cluttering my life with paper. And, yes, I have multiple backups of everything worth saving; some backup copies are stored at home, and other copies are stored off-site for safety. See for some of my earlier articles about how to live a paperless lifestyle.
An article by Jura Koncius of the Washington Post takes the same concept of living paperless and expands it even further. The article says that many Americans, mostly younger adults, are not so interested in the lifestyle trappings or nostalgic memorabilia they were so lovingly raised with. Quoting from the article:
“Members of the generation that once embraced sex, drugs and rock-and-roll are trying to offload their place settings for 12, family photo albums and leather sectionals.
Their offspring don’t want them.”

The article goes on to say, “Whether becoming empty nesters, downsizing or just finally embracing the decluttering movement, boomers are taking a good close look at the things they have spent their life collecting.”

My favorite quote from the article is, “If I can’t store my memories of something in a computer, I’m probably not going to keep them around.”
Indeed, we all need to question why we need to save the bric-a-brac of our lives. Do we need our college textbooks, sports trophies or T-shirt collections? Even more important, do we need to purchase larger and more expensive homes to keep all our possessions?

Are you planning to downsize in your retirement years? Now is the time to start planning. I had exposure to downsizing when I spent two years living in a Winnebago motor home. The adjustment was difficult at first. However, once I downsized, I found that possessions were not all that important. I enjoyed the freedom of not having to deal with all my stuff. You might find the same to be true.
Yes, even genealogists can live comfortably without paper or possessions.
You can read the article by Jura Koncius at while George Carlin’s comments about stuff may be found on YouTube at
My thanks to newsletter reader Jerry Ball for telling me about the article by Jura Koncius.
(Dick Eastman)