Stuck in the '70s

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Final post on old blog


This is the final entry on this blogspot, hosted by Blogger. I now have a blog on my very own Web hoster. I'm leaving this blog up so that everyone can read all of the juicy entries I've written over the past (nearly) two years. My how things have changed -- yet stayed the same! Go to my new blog at


Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Mother's Day

Mother’s Day is coming up in a few days. Sometimes I forget I’m a mom. I wouldn’t expect my two teen-age sons to remember Mother’s Day without a little nudging. I wrote “Mother’s Day” on our dry-erase calendar last week, but mostly for my fiancé’s benefit. I’ve not met his mother yet, and I’d like to do that this year.

I’ve had a few special Mother’s Days since I’ve been a mom over the past 17 years. I remember one in particular when the boys were small and decided to make me the proverbial “breakfast in bed.” That was a nightmare. I spent most of my Mother’s Day cleaning up the kitchen. But, it’s the thought that counts, right? I can say that now.

I don’t really even remember anything special my brothers and I did for our mom on that special day. All I can recall is making some stupid coupons, stapling them into book form and giving Mom to cash in on “hugs” and crap like that. I also remember making a waste basket in kindergarten out of an empty Baskin Robbins’ ice cream container. I painted it blue, glued some construction paper flowers around the top rim and wrote “Mom” sloppily in crayon on one side. Dad still has it in use under his bathroom sink.

My mom was what we now call a “stay-at-home” mom, although she did everything but stay at home. Oh, she was always there at the house when I was – that is, unless of course, we were out shopping together. She was always there when we came home from school or on the weekends when we came in from long hikes up the creek or playing “kick the can” on a summer night.

But, by day, Mom was out and about. She would be out yard-saling with my grandma or my aunt; or she’d be helping in one of our classrooms as a “room mother.” Sometimes, she’d be gone on a club bus trip she’d arranged to Chicago or St. Louis or some other exotic destination that just happened to have a huge shopping mall. Other times, she’d be preparing for a Cub Scout meeting or teaching 4-H kids how to draw. Lots of times, she’d be out puttering in the yard, adding the touches that made it pretty, or inside, keeping the house clean and tidy, or getting the next meal ready.

Mom made camping trips seem not so far from home by bringing most of it with us. She did all the packing, and she never forgot anything.

My mom was pretty popular with the neighborhood kids, mainly because she made a sweet ice tea you could stick your sock to if you spilled some on the kitchen floor – and we always did. She’d encourage our Kool-Aid stands and usually buy half of it herself when business was slow.

If you’ve got a mom handy, just spend some time with her this Sunday. Or, if she prefers, get the heck out of her sight. It’s not the flowers you give her or the meals you try to prepare her in her domain that you and she will remember. Just spend your day treasuring her and being grateful for all she’s done for you and all she will do.

I miss ya, Ma.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Web site down temporarily

Hopefully, some of you have found your way to my blog even though Stuck in the '70s is down for the moment. I'm trying to get this worked out with Yahoo, my Web server. They take $12 a month from one of my credit card accounts, and it wasn't there to take this past month, although it is now; and I've been unable to get Yahoo to update my credit card information online. So, today at lunch, I'll be calling Yahoo to get that fixed, and the site should be back up as soon as possible. Sorry for the inconvenience. Times are tough, and money's been a bit tight.


Thursday, May 04, 2006

Welcome to T&C Shopper's First Issue

(Blogger's Note: Below is my first column for the Towne & Country Shopper, published 5/4/06. Future columns will appear on my "Reminiscin'" Link.)

Welcome to Towne & Country Shopper.

You hold in your hands our first-ever issue. Hang onto it -- you may be able to sell it on Ebay for 5 times what you paid for it several years from now.

We’re glad to be able to present this new paper to north central Arkansas, and have lots of plans for serving you in the future. Ten thousand copies of Towne & Country Shopper will be distributed in the area, including Independence, Jackson, White, Stone, Sharp, Lawrence, Cleburne and Izard counties. In addition to ads from area businesses, we’ll offer space for your display and classified ads at great prices, along with some community news and information about upcoming events in the area.

The Shopper is the brainchild of our general manager, Ted Stepanek. Ted’s got umpteen years of experience in print media sales and was behind the startup of a similar paper in Indiana. About a year ago, while Ted and I were working together at another local shopper paper, we would dream about taking our show on the road. Why, with my newspaper and graphic experience and his ability to drive sales, Ted said we could have our own paper and make it exactly what we wanted and what we saw the readers desired. We had the skills, but not the technology. Now, a year later, we’ve got all the modern equipment, to go along with our abilities, to bring you the nicest tab possible.

Of course, keep in mind, this is our first issue. So, we’re a little thin on the classifieds. That’s where you can help out. Our classified advertising rates are $2.50 per week for 30 words. Not too shabby. You’ll find a form in this paper to fill out and get us your ads.

We also welcome news of your group, church or organization’s events. You can mail them to us at 848 Harrison St., Batesville, or e-mail me at We’ll get them in here as space permits.

I’m excited to have my hands on the computer to create a weekly shopper paper and the outlet for said creativity. See, I’ve been in the media business in Batesville for 24 years now. I’ve thought several times, after having worked for every media outlet in the area, about leaving and going to another newspaper out of town or out of state. In fact, last month I went to Florida for a job interview at a newspaper there and received a pretty decent offer. However, life is complicated when you’ve got a couple of teen-agers and roots so deep in the Ozarks it’d be near impossible, if not at least painful, to tug them out. So, I’m staying here in this beautiful part of the country with its friendly people. The Shopper provides me the opportunity to get out of selling appliances at the local home improvement warehouse (where I was obviously out of my element for about 10 months) and back into my field.

Some of you may know I’ve written a column for a couple of different publications, and I’ll be doing the same here. Mainly, I enjoy writing about growing up in the 1960s and ’70s in American suburbia. But, I’ll also write about stuff that affects us in the 21st century. You won’t find any political jargon in this column, or usually anything that’s gonna rub anyone the wrong way. Hopefully, it’ll just be good fun and reflection. And, hopefully, our Towne & Country Shopper will be something you grab up each week with your iced tea, sit out on the porch and look for some good bargains or find something you’d like to do over the weekend here in our neck of the woods.