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Decorating, shopping, and finding the best price
Life, love and raising kids
Along with do-hickeys, what-cha-ma-call-its, and thing-a-ma-jigs
We’re just two Texas girls
Straight from the sticks
The only thing we won’t gab about
Is religion and politics!

A Blast From The Past

Ann: While doing some spring cleaning, I came across a book I’d bought many years ago, The Verse by the Side of the Road, The Story of the Burma-Shave Signs, by Frank Rowsome, Jr.

Some of you will remember this clever advertising campaign, which lasted from 1925 until 1963. The rhyming jingles for a brushless shave cream were displayed on a series of small wooden signs spaced 100 feet apart along roadways across rural America.

The company, Burma Vita Inc., was operated by Clinton Odell and his son, Allan, who suggested using the roadside idea. For the first three years, Allan and his father wrote the jingles, but when their poetic muse ran out, they sponsored a nationwide contest, awarding $100 for each of the 25 best. Some of the annual contests received more than 50,000 entries!

Some were naughty and never made it past the first round of judging. Boy, wouldn’t you like to read those entries! By today’s standards, I’ll bet they weren’t that bad!

Here’s one of the most the popular:

He had the ring

He had the flat

But she felt his chin

And that was that.


Wanna take a stab at writing one? We’re not paying any money, but it might be interesting to see a modern take on the jingle. And we’ll share the one we like the best on our next blog!

Here’s Ann’s offering:

His cheeks were covered

In five o’clock stubble

Canoodling with him

Was too much trouble.

Burma Shave

Here’s Susan’s:

Short, balding, chubby

And missing teeth

But with cheeks like baby.

He couldn’t keep the girls away.

Burma Shave.

Susan: Talking about seeing these signs reminds me of road trips I’ve taken through the years—no fun when I was growing up. Three girls crammed together in the backseat of a mustang with black interior and no a/c. You either sat behind Daddy and got singed by flying ash (he smoked) or in the middle (with him yelling at you to duck your head because he couldn’t see) or behind Mama. He didn’t play the radio. And we drove for hours without a bathroom break. If I didn’t have a book, I read all the road signs. I knew exactly how far we were from the next Stuckey’s, Dairy Queen, or souvenir shop. (Not that we ever stopped) Things changed when I got married. My husband and I used to drive up in the hill country—nothing more relaxing than traveling down those back roads, listening to music, looking at the scenery.

Don’t forget to try your hand at writing a Burma Shave jingle. Leave it in the comments!

Winner of two eBooks from a previous post is Cindy Bright! BIG congrats, Cindy, and thanks for taking the time to read and comment on our blog.

Find out more about Ann Everett/Emma Ames: https://www.anneverett.com


Memorial Day – a day we honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military

because i never knew you
nor did you me
          i come

because you left behind mother,
father and betrothed
and i wife and children
          i come

because love is stronger than enmity
and can bridge oceans
          i come

because you never return
and i do
i come

          DUONG TUONG Washington, D. C., November 21, 1995

The older I get the more I think about our country and the sacrifices some have made on its behalf. Especially on days like today. I came across this poem, wtitten by Duong Tuong, a Vietnamese writer after visiting the wall in l995. I love its touching simplicity. A child of the 60s, I witnessed daily casualty count on the evening news and saw college students protesting while others burned our flag.

The thing I remember the most was the day my high school principal came over the loudspeaker and requested a moment of silence for a former student who’d graduated only months earlier and had enlisted. He was killed shortly after he arrived in Vietnam.

I remember seeing him in the halls at school. A nice guy. Always smiling. Barely 18. Just a kid. Gone in a minute. Someone I knew. Someone my age. That’s when I realized the US was at war. And it was real.



Do you like puzzles? Solving mysteries? So does Xander. He is a lot like Peter Falk’s character in the series Columbo, because sometimes he appears to be clueless, but that’s only a ruse. He listens to what people say, along with the things they don’t.

After a late-night visit to Battington’s marketplace, Princess Mena vanishes without a trace. Merchants are frantic when King Leander calls for a curfew and postpones the Spring Festival until further notice. Certain his former constable is the man for the job: the mayor hires Xander to investigate, hoping he can solve the mystery in a hurry so things can go back to normal.

But Xander’s not so sure that’s possible, because there’s romance involved, and he knows when that happens folks who usually are very sensible seem to lose all reason. In addition to sorting out truths, half-truths, and outright lies, he must deal with gypsies, love potions, and an illegal moonshine operation before he can get to the bottom of things.

This is what Xander has to say: For the past year I’ve been trying my hand at farming. Without much success I might add. Before that I was constable for the township of Battington, a job I dearly loved. That is until Cymon, the mayor, and I had some differences which led to a parting of the ways. That’s how I got into farming…and found out it wasn’t for me.

      A few days ago I rode into town for supplies, and along came Cymon with an offer I couldn’t refuse. It’s only temporary, but he wants me to investigate Princess Mena’s disappearance. At double my former wages. With any luck I should be able to locate her, collect my wages along with the reward, and be home before harvest. Easy peasy…

I am pleased to announce Xander’s Tangled Web is available on Amazon in eBook, Kindle Unlimited and in paperback for the first time ever. Please check it out!




Need a change of scenery? An escape from reality? These days, it seems like we’re all looking for a change of pace. If you are, check out In My Own Shadow. Read all about the unexpected adventure Lara takes to another world.

Talk about the worst day ever! Lara lets her friend Carrie talk her into a blind date, only it turns out the handsome stranger waiting for Lara after work isn’t Carrie’s cousin after all. And, when they’re chased through a portal to another world, Lara realizes Rhys really is out of this world.

Lyra, her alternate in another dimension, has left clues to the whereabouts of the Book of Secrets, explaining the mystery of time travel in Lara’s subconscious.  Or so Rhys thinks. Power-hungry telepaths will stop at nothing to get it, even if it means breaking Lara’s will. To complicate matters, Lara gets tangled up in her feelings for Rhys while exploring her connection with Lyra.

With Rhys as her guardian, a bear of a man named Azle to guide her, and the spirit of Lyra haunting her dreams, Lara must find the Book of Secrets before it falls into the hands of those who want its power.  Only then can she return to her world safely.

I am very pleased to announce In My Own Shadow is available on Amazon in eBook, Kindle Unlimited and in paperback for the first time ever. Check it out!



About books, movies, cooking, and advice
Decorating, shopping, and finding the best price
Life, love and raising kids
Along with do-hickeys, what-cha-ma-call-its, and thing-a-ma-jigs
We’re just two Texas gals
Straight from the sticks
The only thing we won’t gab about
Is religion and politics!

Wonder what the heck we’re talking about? Well, May is National Hamburger Month. A staple at cookouts and greasy spoon cafes all across the nation, and the Diner lingo title to this blog is the way they used to be ordered.

“Burn one” refers to dropping the burger on the grill. “Taking it through the garden” means topping it with lettuce and tomato, and to finish it off, you pin a rose (onion), the most fragrant of flowers, on it!

Man, that diner slang just adds some fun to the order! Of course, in recent years the Fast Food King has been elevated to a ‘gourmet’ status. The origin is unclear, but burgers have been around for a long time. A recipe for a hamburger appears in a cookbook written in the 1700s, and in the 1800s, emigrants ate them on their way to America.

In 1896, the Chicago Daily Tribune mentioned a place called The Sandwich Car that offered a Hamburger steak sandwich ‘cooked while you waited on the gasoline range for a nickel.’

ANN: Hey, back in 1967, I bought hamburgers at McDonald’s in Austin, Texas for nineteen cents! Only a fourteen cents price increase from 1896!!

J. Wellington “Whimpy,” Popeye the Sailor Man’s friend, helped their popularity when he appeared in the cartoon as a hefty Lover of Hamburgers in 1930. His soft spoken and cowardly personality was in direct contrast to his willingness to do whatever it took to get one, or a billion, for free.

They come in all sizes, consisting of one or more cooked patties of ground meat; usually beef, pan-fried, grilled, smoked or flame broiled, served on a sliced bun with lettuce, tomato, red, white or grilled onions, pickles, bacon, cheese. Sliced avocadoes, peppers, mushrooms, along with condiments such as ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, or relish.

SUSAN: The best burger I ever ate? October 3, 1969. On the way to Corpus Christi, my husband and I stopped at a little café. We’d only been married a few hours, and after being too busy and too nervous to eat all day, we were starving. Boy, did it taste good.

If burgers are your favorite fast food, then you’re in good company. Bruce Springsteen loves a good diner burger. Venus Williams prefers one from Mickey D’s, while Katy Perry fancies one from In-N-Out-Burger.

SUSAN: My favorite is a well-done pattie on a toasted bun, mustard on one side, and mayonnaise on the other, grilled onions, lettuce, and tomatoes. Sometimes thin-sliced avocadoes. Sometimes melted cheese.

ANN: Just so you know, to order that well-done burger in diner lingo, the waitress would shout, “One Hockey Puck.” My favorite thing about a burger is the sauce I put on it. I mix 3 parts mayo with 1-part mustard, add lots of ground black pepper, and slather it on both buns. I love to add grilled mushrooms and onions, along with lettuce and some good ol’ East Texas maters!

What’s your fave? We’d love to know the place you like best—or, if you have a special recipe. Let us know in the comments!

Find out more about Ann Everett/Emma Ames: https://www.anneverett.com