So what’s been happening in the many months since I blogged regularly?  Allow me to present a summary in photos….


One of my dearest friends, Shay, treated me to an unforgettable vacation.  We went to Orange Beach, Alabama, where we stayed in a spectacular hotel [with an equally spectacular breakfast buffet!] that made us reluctant to even leave our room.  Most notable about the trip was the fact that neither one of us consumed alcohol.  What a blessing to be completely sober for this period of relaxation and reflection.  I am eternally grateful that I was able to enjoy myself clear headed.  No blur of a boozy haze or drunken antics for these two.  Considering how expensive it was to eat down there– I can’t even imagine the astronomical figures we’d be looking at if our tab included adult beverages.  Us bobbing around in the ocean waves will forever be my ‘happy place.’


I fell madly, passionately, deeply in love with Reno.  My 14.  We only spent a few months together but they were some of the best of my life.  I half-jokingly referred to him as my Florence Nightingale because he saved me from a ship that was sinking fast.  He treated me like a Queen and told me– more importantly, showed me– that I deserved the best.  Never again will I settle for less.  Thank you for everything, my sweet love.  You taught me how to be a Viking.


My beloved Reno now walks the halls of Valhalla.  Mostly I linger in the ‘denial’ phase.  It just doesn’t seem real.  Or perhaps more accurately I shove it out of my mind as much as possible because it’s too damn painful.  I miss him every second of every day.  We had so many plans…with him went a piece of my heart that will never be replaced.  One day I will write about him, about this tragic loss, but right now I just can’t.  I love you, Reno.  No more pain.


Freya settled comfortably into her Germantown home.  Who would have thought that the tiny, malnourished, flea ridden pup that Reno and I rescued would have turned into such a loving, rambunctious, and spunky young dog?  I exaggerate not when I assert that this is my canine soulmate.  #freyathebrave


A brief stint in Nutbush at the glorious Pike’s Peak town homes introduced me to two women I will never forget.  Lynda, I love everything about you!  And my sweet Sherry, rest in peace.  You were truly an angel on this earth.  Even though I only knew you for a brief time you impacted my life tremendously.  There wasn’t a mean bone in your body and your sweet spirit and kind heart will live on in all who knew you.  Thank you for opening your home to me, being my friend, and encouraging me to follow my dreams.  It is comforting to look down and see the necklace you gave me.


The kids were remarkably good sports despite getting rained out of fireworks on the Fourth.  I also turned 32.  That was our July in a nutshell.


Come August, Hubble returned from a multiyear stint at summer camp.  To say I am proud of him is the understatement of the century.  He is working, clean & sober, and staying in contact daily with his offspring.  It’s been quite the journey but I can honestly say I love and respect him– and he is not only my co-parent but one of my best friends.  Keep up the outstanding work, Will!  Your family supports you 110%.


Adam‘s first day of third grade at Riverdale Elementary.


Tatum’s first day of kindergarten at Tara Oaks Elementary.


My rock.  I thought I would never find happiness again.  You found me at my weakest and nursed me back to strength.  Allen, you mean the world to me.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your compassion and understanding.  It is no exaggeration when I say you brought me back to life.


My ex, Joey, almost died after getting shot in Nutbush.  We were on horrible terms but all was forgiven after I learned just how close he was to losing his life….it’s been a tumultuous ride.  But I would never wish death on anyone.  I hope with every ounce of my being he recovers and becomes the man I know he is capable of being.


GH Mafia!  When the going gets tough, I turn to the toughest women I know.  I love you all.  Birdie and Brittany, thank you for dining with me.  I look forward to our monthly excursion.


Brittany created a miracle!  Little miss Sophia.  ❤


Holly also created a miracle!  Little miss Hadley.  ❤


Danielle and Nathan got married after many years [and three beautiful children] together.  Much love to the happy couple.  I cannot wait to visit soon.


Overall…life is good.  I am blessed.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


Posted in * R. i. P. *, Al Jizzy, Birdie, California, Da Real Homiez, Danielle- partner in crime, Dating, Death, Freya, Germantown, GH Mafia, Grief, Holidays, Love, Parenting, Pets, Relationships, Riverdale, School, Tara Oaks, Travels, Viking, Water, Will Reed | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tiny hands


It’s abundantly clear that many mops are required to mop my bleeding, liberal heart off the floor.  Regardless of where one falls on the left/right political spectrum– I think we can unanimously agree the current Commander in Chief should probably ease up on those Twitter thumbs.  Let him grab somebody else by the P….I seriously feel as though I am stumbling through the Twilight Zone.  Perchance this is Apocalypse Now.

“Trump, the man, is now is up there with Hercules and Sisyphus with his own branded adjective.  I’m not completely sure what it stands for.  But when it finally settles into the lexicon, I’m certain that it will be a disconcerting combination of petulant, preening, ignorant, shameless, vulgar, paranoid, vainglorious, reckless, imperious, impulsive, unhinged, callous, corrosive, narcissistic, intemperate, juvenile, disloyal, venal, chaotic, squalid– what have I forgotten?  Oh yes– and just mind-numbingly, epically incompetent.” ~ Graydon Carter


With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


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Five years of Taterbug

*Tatum Maris Reed*

21 February 2012 @ 12:46pm CST • 7lbs4oz & 19.7 inches

Born at the Regional Medical Center of Memphis

Looking back at the announcement of her birth feels like a million years have passed.  Only half a decade?  Surely every parent can attest to the fact that time flies when it comes to your children.  A blink of an eye brings a seemingly endless supply of memories, yet it still seems like only yesterday.  So much between now and then….


Five years with my favorite daughter

Tatum, you have been a beacon of light since you were in my womb.  Your growth these past few years astounds me.  Other than your giant blue eyes [with flecks of gold in your right iris] you don’t even look like the tiny baby I cradled in my arms at the hospital.  Watching you develop into an intelligent, confident, sassy,charismatic, loving, opinionated, silly, funny, sweet little girl.  You are everyone’s Princess!  I love you with every ounce of my being.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


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Don’t eat all my candy

Other than stocking up on sugary swag for my kiddos and no time to enjoy a delicious meal cooked and served by somebody else because you are a T4T Team Captain food specials at local eateries, Valentine’s Day was just another day.  Even though it’s nothing special to me I could not help but contemplate the 14th of February a few days after the fact.  I promise to steer clear of sappy and bypass bitter.


When asked to select his mom or dad Adam chose…his sister!

“Dear Tatum, I have many reasons why I love you.  I’m just going to give you three.  You’re so cute.  You make me feel happy.  You’re smart and it makes me feel good that you’re smart.  You’re loving and it makes me feel very loved.  Love, Adam.  P.S.  Don’t eat all my candy.”

Adam made this for Tatum at school.  Talk about making a mama’s heart melt.  I absolutely adore the fact he selected his little sister as the recipient of the sole Valentine each student made for the craft.  What a fantastic big brother!  He never ceases to amaze me.  Whenever she’s not around he’s always asking about her– if the two of us are out and about he’s constantly picking out things she would like.  I could not ask for a better sibling connection.  During a time where Adam’s overall behavior has been…less than ideal…it reassures me to see that he treats his role as a big brother with the utmost reverence.

vdUntil recently my relationship status on Facebook fluctuated weekly.  Nothing actually changed outside of social media; however, I explored various types of taken, borrowed a boyfriend [thanks Jeff!], and was even single for a brief stint.  Now I’ve settled into the ambiguous “It’s complicated” — with no name attached.  Trust me when I say this is not an attempt to be evasive or dramatic.  My love life contains a myriad of complexities but it’s not complicated.  Blasting my personal business on front street no longer serves me well.

Is there a #1 in my heart?  Without a shadow of a doubt.  I am involved with a special someone.  We are ever evolving but our dedication remains constant.  That means I have no desire for dating, fornicating, or boyfriend-ing anyone else.  It’s no secret to those who know us…yet our mutual agreement involves flying under the radar until a more appropriate time.


“Love is friendship that has caught fire.  It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving.  It is loyalty through good and bad times.  It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.” ~ Ann Landers



The collage above pays homage to the Other that is Signifcant.  He thoroughly enjoys perusing this blog when he gets the chance.  Not only does he mention it to everyone we meet but he boasts that it got me on TV.  As if my ego needed any more expansion. 😉

I am grateful for what we share.  It takes a special kind of man to want what’s best for the woman he loves.  Even if it means loving from a distance.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


Posted in Adam, Cheese, Jojo Dancer, Love, Relationships, Riverdale, Tatum, TeePee | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Time capsule and a funeral

Adam, Tatum, and I created a time capsule over the weekend per their request.  It was a spur of the moment thing but I decided to roll with it.  Easier said than done given my perfectionist tendencies and control freak self.  After all it was their project, not mine, so I gave them free reign.  I smiled, took a few deep breaths, and asked my children what they wanted to include.  Each of us enclosed a small note dated and signed, along with a few trinkets.  Several recent pictures were added to our capsule– which was housed in Adam’s old Captain America lunchbox.  Not only did he provide the structure but he also dug the hole to house it!   Before leaving the backyard a new event was added to iPhone calendar:  Open Time Capsule on 30 January 2021. 


Here lies our time capsule. Why I didn’t take a photo of the finished product prior to burial is beyond me.


Family is everything.

Yesterday I attended the funeral of one of my good friends, Warren Smith.  His funeral, held at the Methodist church of his childhood, didn’t coincide with the Warren I knew.  Of course the final service that you would plan for yourself drastically differs than the one your mother would choose for you…yet I felt a disconnect between the hymns, prayers, and eulogy from the Minister and the spirit of my friend.  Other than a few photos at the front [none of them recent], several references of his love for the outdoors, and one brief acknowledgment of “his troubles,” the personal connection seemed missing.  Cat and I could count the number of people we recognized on one hand.  A few of his friends from out of town asked me to mail them a copy of the program, but no programs were made.  I understand that everybody has different preferences when it comes to a funeral.  Grieving the unexpected loss of a loved one is difficult enough without the added responsibility of making arrangements.  More than anything his funeral seemed surreal, much like his passing.

I just saw him two weeks ago.  He greeted me with a giant bear hug, kissed my cheek, made fun of me for being antisocial, and jokingly told me to stay out of trouble.  I can’t believe he’s gone.  Warren, you will get the post you deserve.  Rest easy.


Only recently did I muster up the necessary emotions and mindset to write about Bosi. I have yet to memorialize Ron and Lacy — but I plan to start that process soon.  It was not my intention to end this post on a depressing note, so let me close by saying how grateful I am to have known these friends.  For it is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.  How thankful I am for the time I got with them and the memories I’ll forever cherish.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


Posted in * R. i. P. *, Adam, Bosi, Death, Family, Grief, Memories, Tatum | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I cling to the 9%!

Last fall I purchased a DNA kit from, hoping to shed some light on my international genetic makeup.  I spit awkwardly into a plastic test tube, made a  video to commemorate the occasion [bonus points for Adam referencing John Cena], and dropped my specimen in the mail, silently pleading with the gods to let my saliva validate what I already knew deep within my soul:  I am Russian. 

In my haste to cement my status as a maiden of the motherland I forgot to activate the kit.  Oops.  The friendly folks at Ancestry DNA impressed me with their willingness to fix the situation– best believe I scrutinize the customer service I receive over the phone– and sent out a new kit that same day.  Round two went without a hitch.  Come November the results were in, delivered to the corresponding app on my iPhone.



A basic Anglo-Saxon with 49% British DNA?!  85% Western European?!  Can I get my money back?  My aesthetician [that would be Teri Lewis of Spectacular Skin] was convinced I was black Irish because of my coloring and skin.  She called that one long before I ever provided a sample.  Thanks to her professional opinion I was able to prepare myself to accept that my forebearers might not be washing down their borsch with a double shot of vodka.  Instead I chose to cling to the glorious 9% Eastern European that comprises my genetic makeup.


Operation Biological Information follows my quest to obtain records involving my adoption.  Since I submitted the required documentation in December 2015, nary a peep has been heard from the powers that be residing in the Cordell Hull Building.  I knew this wasn’t going to be a quick process– yet over a year has passed with zero communication?  That seems a bit excessive.  I need to contact Nashville first thing on Tuesday [tomorrow being MLK Day, a federal holiday] and remind them I’m still here.  Still waiting.  Is it supposed to take this long?  Obviously I have nothing to compare it to but I feel like thirteen months of radio silence is abnormal.  Did I get lost in the shuffle?  Misplaced file perhaps?  Or maybe there was no information and I just wasn’t told?  I’ve gone 31 years without knowing anything about the biologicals.  It’s not as if I’m chomping at the bit, sprinting to the mailbox every day or frantically scrolling through the caller ID on our landline.  I purposely kept my expectations low and prepared for a snail’s pace.  Something about those DNA results invigorated my curiosity…


I may not know my family but I do know my hair looks fierce!  Massive kudos to Matt McAtee [a.k.a. My Boyfran] for transforming my all but destroyed from years of drugstore box color in half a dozen shades damaged, multicolored coif into a bold, fiery red.  I feel like a rock star!  Feisty, funky, and fun…my luscious locks finally match my personality.  Call Stella Reed Salon to book your appointment with my mane man.

With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,


Posted in Adam, Adoption, Birdie, Da Real Homiez, Family, Kids, Matt Boyfran, Megan Childers- favorite roomie, Memphis, Mother Russia, My Parents, Tennessee, YouTube | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment