Start Again…

Dear Reader:

I realized, with a start, the other day that I never remember either of my grandmothers… not completely dressed and ready to start the day.

It was a source of pride to that generation to have someone mention, posthumously, that they had gotten up, and gotten dressed on the day they passed.

Since Grandmother Wilson was a farmer’s wife her routine never altered ( even after granddaddy died) and the farm no longer grew cotton… she was up at the crack of dawn, reading the Bible, and fixing a big breakfast…even just for herself.

Grandmother Barbour ( who lived with her daughter after her husband’s death) did the same thing. Up at the crack of dawn , read verses from the Bible, and then start fixing breakfast for the entire family.

I don’t think their generation would have had any trouble sticking to their normal routines through a pandemic. No slacking off for them! The difference-they saw each day as a gift God had given them which had nothing to do with work alone or a change in one’s daily routine.

Today psychotherapists warn us that we should stick to a routine-they consider putting on clothes to be an important part of mental and emotional hygiene during the pandemic.

Just like we set a mood for a romantic dinner with music and candles…we should also set a positive uplifting mood to set the tone of every day we live-regardless of external circumstances beyond our control.

There is certainly no harm in giving oneself a ” time out” or ” spa day” occasionally but we need to be careful not to become stuck in pj’s because we can literally become ( too easily) stuck in life and that is not healthy or productive on any level.

So until tomorrow… Wake up, listen to the birds chirping… they are up and dressed ready for a new day and so should the rest of us follow their example-with a song in our heart! Precious Life!

” Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh

I went to babysit for Walsh and Mollie yesterday while they went out to eat for their ninth anniversary! They are the last May anniversary for all my three children … starting with May 3, 6, and 13th! My children love May weddings!

… and my garden has loved the recent spring showers!

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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11 Responses to Start Again…

  1. best-ffc says:

    I think it is important to as well to stick to a routine. I told my children this and although they are remote with their education, we all get up same time, eat together, and prepare for our day. This also helps mentally as well to not get stuck in such an unhealthy habit. Great post! My dog gets up with the birds, oh how he loves to hear them sing and then chase them. 🙂

    • Becky Dingle says:

      I remember looking so forward to retirement to spend days however I wanted to spend them….but we learn very quickly that not setting routines does not make us happy ….instead of off-kilter. The garden calls me out each morning to check on it…feed it, water it, and smile like a proud mother at all my new “students.”
      So glad you are reading the blog…consider it an honor.

  2. Rachel Edwards says:

    Happy 9th anniversary…what a good looking couple…

    • Becky Dingle says:

      Thanks Gingi! May always starts out a busy month with each couple’s anniversary falling on top of the other’s….thank goodness in real life…years separated the three May weddings…but all were beautiful leaving a very happy mother so fulfilled.

  3. Sis Kinney says:

    I’m “a day late and a dollar short,” so to speak. I wanted to ask about the Mary Alice Monroe series; my cousin said she had just finished reading her series about the Isle of Palms. Is that included in this latest book?
    You also mentioned Karen White: have you read her Tradd Street series? I happened to find the 2nd book in that series at our little free-to-anyone library and got hooked on it, so read all of them! The first one is The House on Tradd Street. They brought back such memories of downtown Charleston! We loved living in Summerville and having easy access to Charleston! Miss it sometimes terribly! Anyway, there are 6 in that series and she’s indicated she’s going to write one more for that one. I haven’t read any of her others yet, but intend to. Also going to read the ones my cousin recommended – which IS the Beach House series!
    Yeah, it’s been a cool start to our Spring this year! Low last night was 36!! I am SO ready for some steady sunshine and warmth!
    Daughter Natalie is now a travel nurse and is at Mission Hospital in Asheville – only 1-1/ 2 hours from us. I am SO looking forward to going down to spend some time with her; we might meander over to Hendersonville to visit with a longtime Summerville friend of hers who lives there. It’s all so close! But for right now I am wanting to find some nice, BIG strawberries to do jam – like the ones we used to pick at Charpia’s in the ‘ville!!
    Stay well! Keep writing! Happiest of anniversaries to Walsh & Molly! (Bobby’s & mine is the 24th! (4 x theirs – 1)
    Much love,
    Much love

  4. Becky Dingle says:

    The Beach House series is my favorite…hard to believe it started in 2002 and it is still going…and I still look forward to every May for the latest story of the Rutledge generational family – they feel like part of my family now. Next month Mary Alice Monroe is publishing her first middle school book about the sea turtles and the characters are grandchildren descendants…all about age 11. Can hardly wait to get it and get Eva Cate started on it.,,,,your Emma would love it too I bet.How was Suzy?

  5. Lynn Gamache says:

    How wonderful to recall to mind memories of our grandmothers. For me this happens again yesterday as I was sorting through a few rather faded black & white photos from the early 1940’s. There are as my well-dressed (actually wearing a pretty summer dress) English grandma standing in front of a net with garden behind. And what is in her hands? My Very prim & proper maternal grandma is posing with a badminton racket!

    This made me smile & chuckle to myself. These old photos too often seem to capture people looking so stern & serious . But here my grandma looks relaxed & is smiling. I can only guess that she was one who arose early each day to read her Bible & pray; to get properly dressed before preparing br Alfa’s this for her husband & four girls. It would be work b fore play— but she would be sure to make time for fun & games too!
    And just an added note of interest. Our family circle includes several who enjoy backyard badminton— and only yesterday came a call from our daughter in Colorado asking about finding facets suitable for use by our two youngest grandsons who are just being introduced to this fun activity.

  6. Admiring your garden photos and article 👌🙏🌷

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