Gumpa was our Weather Channel

My daddy’s old metal map of the Southeastern United States hangs with the magnets still in place from Hugo’s tract to Charleston some twenty one years ago. It is like a wall monument. I recall constantly listening to the shrill sounds of the Charleston airport weather updates during tomato and cucumber season. This was our constant companion growing up on a Lowcountry vegetable farm. The old weather radio is a far cry from the today’s sophisticated weather tracking. I imagine if we had had the Weather Channel back in the day, you may have heard something like this, “In 10 Continue Reading

Imagine That!

I spent two wonderful days in Georgetown, TX speaking to the Texas Baptist Weekday Education Association. The close to 1,000 attendees were nurturing women who deeply love children. The group had hearts as big as the Lone Star State. The conference theme was entitled, “Imagine That” based of the fabulous Christian song by Mercy Me, “I Can Only Imagine.” My transporter, Celina, was delightful and drove me to see where I was speaking. Yes, everything is bigger in Texas and proven again when I saw the Georgetown Texas Baptist Church looming in the distance. I toured the education building and Continue Reading

Spanx, False Eyelashes, and a Spray-on Tan

I opened the letter from the Miss South Carolina Organization.It read, “Join us for the 75th Anniversary of the Miss South Carolina Pageant where we will honor you for your reign……” All of this translated in my mind to….”Jane, you have to lose 15 pounds, try to erase 20 years, buy a new gown, Spanx, false eyelashes, a spray-on tan, make sure your roots are covered, get a facial, pedicure, manicure and take half a valium in case you don’t get this all together. What would I do if the weight will not come off my body? I had heard Continue Reading

Lowcountry Tides and the Changes in Life

Memorial Day weekend ushers in the official beginning of summer. Along with the obvious tribute to our brave men and women in the armed forces, the sun seems a little hotter and the water temperature is not as cool. Sunscreen, bottles of water, bread, peanut butter, etc., are all on my list to take in the boat. My daddy, a seasoned Johns Island boater, always said to never leave the shore without food and water. So with the coolers packed and boat in good shape, off we went to Abbapoola Creek to join a ka-zillion other boaters in Charleston. To Continue Reading

Families: If the Old Kitchen Table Could Talk

As I began writing my book, Bury Me with My Pearls,  I knew there  had to be a chapter on families and children.  Dusting my kitchen table gave me the perfect story since I noticed marks and scratches all over one part of its surface. On closer examination, I saw some beautiful reminders of the importance of family.  Families: if the old kitchen table could talk, it  would tell priceless stories….#pearlsbook  Enjoy an excerpt from a chapter in the book, “Children: Our Most Precious Pearls I dusted the kitchen table and saw the words, “Daniel C. Herlong” imprinted in the Continue Reading

What Happened to the Friendly Skies?

I knew better than to let Thomas book airline tickets to New York City.He will try to get the best deal like he does when he grocery shops at BI-LO.Our pantry looks like a distribution center for Southern Home products. The airline I fly most often is Delta.I have some status on that airline which comes in handy these days when the dream of the flying experience has become a nightmare. Thomas called to inform me that he got a fabulous price on an airline I will not disclose that is based out of Charlotte, NC (US hint, hint) through Continue Reading

God Bless The Good ol’ South

MI crooked letter, crooked letter I, crooked letter, crooked letter I, hump back, hump back I. Mississippi is only state I can spell with ease since there is an unforgettable way to spell its name. My impression of spending a week in Vicksburg made an indelible mark on my memory. The week was spent doing my favorites things….laughing, eating, laughing, eating, and watching extraordinary young women compete for the title of Miss America…….I mean they were all Miss America material. We stayed in a casino/hotel compete with the continuous sounds of slot machines being played 24-7. I believe Vicksburg was Continue Reading

If Only the South Had Won the War-wa

This is a story about Southern football at its finest. Tuesday before the first Clemson game, I did like every other Southern football mother/ wife and went to the grocery store to prepare for Clemson tailgating. I even Googled “tailgating foods”. “Get with it, Jane.” I told myself. “Your children are at Clemson now and you have to do the football, hotter-that-hell-temperature, cook junk food that will clog your arteries, etc. thing and pretend it is fun.” To honor the forefathers of the Herlong clan we arrived a full four hours before kickoff. Our wonderful host and hostess had not Continue Reading

My Friends are Mortified

“Jane, you are not going to write about this in the paper, are you?” “Yes I am. I just can’t help it.” I said. “Everyone, demo-graphically speaking has had one and they tell you about it. Just say the word and they will share their experience.” What is the word? The dreaded colonoscopy. I plunged/drank myself into the experience we should all heed if one cares about maintaining good health. God bless Tommy Stone when he handed me the massive plastic jug with four flavored packets. The first thing I thought of was how nice to have this plastic jug Continue Reading

Ten Tasks for a Healthy 2010

My sister, Carol Hardman, died unexpectedly on December 20, 2009. My heart is heavy for her husband and three children. To bury my mother and sister in a period of five months is surreal. My prayer is that my family will live in peace, and my sister will rest in peace. What I am sharing in this article is heartfelt from personal experience of how to live in peace regardless of circumstances. To be totally honest, I am still a work in progress. 1. Forgive. It does not matter what you story is. Don’t allow yourself to live in a Continue Reading