Gangsters, Russian, and my biological mother

Before I dive into anything too intense, let me first bring you up to speed with my status quo.  My world these days is…calm.  We’ve settled into a routine.  Sometimes I get bored.  Dare I say it’s ‘normal?’  Nothing excites me more.IMG_1788

2 distracted & impatient children + 1 sweat drenched & exhausted mom = decent family photo

Tatum turned seven on 21 February.  Her birthdays are inextricably linked with what our family endured in California…and I’ll leave it at that.  We celebrated the following weekend with a small gathering at Urban Air.  I’ll have to post additional pictures and video footage of my little daredevil at a later date.  She swung across a zip line suspended high above the air, scaled climbing walls with ease, and even cleared a giant leap from a tall platform!  Watching her reminded me of all the adventures I had doing indoor climbing with Dad.  No doubt she has her mama’s fearlessness.

Meanwhile, Adam preferred being on solid ground.  Once he discovered the bumper cars he lost interest in all other attractions.  When asked if his little sister was going to be the brave one, he was proud to let her have the limelight.  No one cheered louder [from the safety of solid ground] than him.  My heart swelled with pride.  These two children are the reason I keep my eyes on the prize.  They deserve it.  I want my daughter to have a better understanding on an age appropriate level of the confusing things in her world, why her family is unique, and just how many people love her.


Any job where I can take two steps outside the front door and  buy manna from heaven

Recognizing the need to contribute financially, occupy my time in a constructive way, and feel a general sense of accomplishment I knew I had to find employment– jobs that didn’t depend on tips or commission for a paycheck.  Legal and legitimate businesses.  Not places where I’d be too embarrassed to admit I was on the payroll [here’s looking at you, ‘Vixen dude’]– I will not be showing up for Career Day at Riverdale Elementary as a phone sex operator/cam girl/massage entertainer.  I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.

A very exciting prospect invited me to their career opportunity event.  Lo and behold, I was offered the job!  Another huge milestone in my adulting quest.  I’ll copy and paste the press release directly from the Book of Face on 2/22/19:

🚨Announcement 📢
It is with great excitement that I announce I have joined the e-Commerce team at Kroger! 🌟 I work to ensure Click List deliveries are accurate and include fresh, high quality produce. 🥗 You’ll see me zooming around the store, keeping things running smoothly in our part of the store, and maybe even running the goods to your vehicle! 🛒 I’m doing training to be able to work in multiple store departments if needed because I’m planning to be at Store 405 [Bartlett Blvd. & Stage] for a long time and want to be able to help in a variety of ways.🏆 The benefits are amazing, their employees are treated very well, and I definitely see long term potential—maybe even climbing the ladder! 🚀 This was definitely worth the wait. 💖
P.S. They have Girl Scout cookies out front! 🍪


Donna, Allen, and Cheri

Allen celebrates his birthday four days after Tatum’s.  His mom treated us to dinner at the restaurant of his choosing.  Oysters were calling his name so I suggested Half Shell.  Surprisingly enough for somebody who salivates over seafood– and has lived in the Memphis area his whole life– he’d never been.  We split a gulf coast shrimp appetizer that was delicious and he thought his fried oysters were the  But the absolute best thing on their menu doesn’t swim….The Big Cheese.  “Havarti, brie, smoked Gouda, pepperjack, provolone and cheddar cheese with fresh basil on toasted wheat-berry bread. Served with a side of tomato jam.”  OH. MY. GOD.  Quite possibly one of the best things I’ve ever put in my mouth.  Beyond delicious.

Special thanks to Allen’s Aunt Cheri who surprised us at the restaurant for a few minutes.  She’s had some pretty serious health issues lately and is still getting back on her feet.  I know it meant a lot to Allen to see her.


“Up in the [hood] just workin’ on my fitness, he’s my witness…” 🚶‍♀️🏋️‍♂️🧘‍♀️

Despite my previous paragraph extolling the virtues of food, Baberz and I have made a team effort out of getting in shape.  Due to our lifestyle changes both of us put on a considerable amount of weight.  I gained 35lbs and he’s not liking what he sees on the scale.  Every morning we start our day with a protein packed smoothie with fresh fruit.  No more sugar laden cereals with strange ingredients and empty calories– at least not on any sort of regular basis.  I’m trying to drink a gallon of water a day [though lately I’ve been slacking with that] and eat a clean, vegetarian diet.  He’s taking gradual steps to get more nutrition but I am super proud of him for cutting back on soda.  I know that’s a difficult addiction.

We’re also walking together every day.  Our standard route is a 1.5 mile loop around the neighborhood.  Both of us have gym memberships [that are lying dormant] and want to try yoga.  Having a partner to hold you accountable and make your workouts more fun makes all the difference.  However, I have a boost in the fitness department because I walk all day at work and he sits at his desk.


I like the sound of that.

Thanks to Duolingo I am now studying Russian.  As some of you may know, being able to speak the language of the Mother Country has been a longtime dream of mine.  How nice it would be to have a native speaker with whom I could practice.  ‘Being able to speak’ jumps the gun a wee bit– the Cyrillic alphabet and guttural sounds proved far more difficult than I ever imagined.  I refuse to get frustrated; instead, I’m editing my approach to study.  How cool is it that an app exists where I can learn another language for free?

FullSizeR (1)

“Prohibition has made nothing but trouble.” – Al Capone

Recently we finished our latest binge, Boardwalk Empire.  I would include a shot from the show but I was more than a little bit conflicted because I am equally obsessed with the actors who portrayed Al Capone, Arnold Rothstein, and Nelson Van Alden.  Hence the historical document from prohibition acting as a visual.


Isn’t she glorious?

Check out Allen’s new toy.  Tax returns equal splurging on the most badass Alienware computer ever.  It’s faster than the speed of light and quite aesthetically pleasing.  Therefore it deserves a mention.


Casper [white], Nikki Coco [gray center], and Knievel [foreground]

I met Allen’s three cats in August 2017, the first time I came over to his house.  23 February 2019 marks the only time I have ever been able to get all three kibbels in one picture.  Trust me when I say this is no small feat.  So remarkable in fact, it got recognized on here.


Behold, my adoption records from the State of Tennessee…

Operation Biological Information yielded significant results.  Truth be told, I’m overwhelmed.  Never in a million years did I think it would be this…intense.  Shortly before receiving my records I discovered a half-sibling through Ancestry DNA.  We have communicated regularly over the past few weeks but they are not quite where I am on the journey of discovery– my existence shocked them and they were caught totally off guard– so I respect that.  Their privacy will never be compromised.  Hopefully we will continue to deepen our relationship and eventually they will be comfortable sharing it.

I know who my biological mother is and am pretty sure I know how to contact her.  Additionally, I have been able to discover my maternal grandparents and her ex-husband, who could possibly be my biological father.  As of now I sent her a friend request and message on Facebook.  Neither has been acknowledged but I don’t know how often she gets online, or if the message went to her ‘Other’ folder since we are not friends.  It has not been read.  I do have a phone number for her but I am still working up the courage to call it….

Going into this I thought I was pretty even keeled, even stoic.  That has not been the case.  The second I discovered my biological name was Cherish Marie King, tears rolled down my face.  Biological Mom knew I was going to another family and she gave me a name?  I don’t know if that’s a common thing but it hit me really hard.  When I saw that she left loving instructions for the family I should be placed with , I lost it.  I never felt like my adoption meant I was ‘unwanted’ but when I saw just how much I was loved and all the wonderful things that she wanted for me….no words.  I hope we can connect and pursue some sort of relationship.


With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,



About Cocktails With Hemingway

I'm blunt and opinionated. Virtually everything I say or do is a contradiction but I'm not a hypocrite. I never hesitate to speak my mind and never fail to leave an impression wherever I go. You love me, you hate me, but you'll never forget me.
This entry was posted in Employment, Family, Love, Mother Russia, Pets, Tatum and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Gangsters, Russian, and my biological mother

  1. Don’t forget I’m working on my French with Babble! Had a great lesson today!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s