I bake when I’m homesick.
And especially when I’m missing people I wish I could still see or talk to. My grandmothers both made cornbread so well that I would put in special requests. Good with a glass of tea, a fried chicken thigh, a mess of collard and mustard greens and plenty of butter. Or tonight: a baked pork chop, butter beans simmered in okra and slivers of salted tomato and cucumber.
I find my way back to them in the flavors and aromas they lived with and used to show love every day. Nothing fancy. And often using leftovers: a ham bone saved from a Sunday supper, a thump of bacon drippings, a sliced tomato from the yard. But served with flair on their best linen and tableware, and you felt their care in each mouthful.
If I bake or cook something for you, I care about you. Or I know you are experiencing and feeling something I have felt acutely: Loss, and longing. And so I feed you to fill that emptiness, even temporarily.
Next week: seafood gumbo.
It’s time for one of my favorite shopper-tunities: Bargain Carousel!
A 1000-family garage sale, Bargain Carousel has been labeled the “largest garage sale in Birmingham.” Through member donations, Bargain Carousel provides shoppers with quality items, including many of life’s necessities, at very affordable prices. In return, proceeds are returned directly to the Birmingham community through the Community Projects the Junior League of Birmingham supports.
It takes over 7,000 volunteer hours to produce Bargain Carousel, and there will be over 100,000 items for sale! Find out more at http://bargaincarousel.net/.
You can shop for a fabulous cause ahead of the rush at Bargain Bash on Thursday, April 25. Bargain Bash offers exclusive access to all the merchandise that will be sold at Bargain Carousel. Enjoy fabulous food and tasty beverages from local businesses, incredible auction items and private shopping at bargain prices. Be a part of this wonderful night as the Junior League of Birmingham raises awareness and funds for its 38 community projects, which have made a positive impact on the Birmingham community for over 96 years. (Items purchased at Bargain Bash are double the price marked during the weekend sale.)
TIPS: Get there early, wear comfortable shoes and bring a big tote or cart!
Check out some of my favorite finds from this year’s sale!
Want to go? Comment “Send me to bargain Carousel!” on this post, or on the associated posts on Instagram (@samechicdifferentday) and SCDD’s Facebook page!
“High Fashion” Jumpsuit: Fashion Nova | Eyewear: Ray-Ban
Do pink and red go together? Should I wear white after Labor Day? Am I too old to wear skinny jeans? Is it tacky to wear sleeveless?
These are all versions of the same questions to me: “Is this outfit too much? Are people going to think I’M too much?”
And the longer you ask those questions, the less fun you’re going to have getting dressed or doing “too much” of anything else.
Wear what you want. And get busy living.
I was an artist’s model for a minute in undergrad. I posed for hours in my swimsuit while students stared, took stock and drew. I was scared and deeply embarrassed until I saw their work and realized that what I perceived as physical shortcomings, they saw without judgment.
They made it art.
Writing about myself is much like that: scary, exhilarating and very freeing. It’s looking at my flaws and foibles as honestly as I do my freckles, gray hair or dimples: as interesting highlights on the roadmap of an unexpected but beautiful journey.
It’s seeing what is, as it is, and letting it be.
I’m getting nearly “naked” again soon, in front of an audience. (My days of posing as an artist’s model are long over, Mom.) I’m scared to death but ready to show my emotional scars and spiritual stretch marks with no shame — to interpret them for clues, search them for lessons and find the beauty in them.
I may bomb.
But I may blow up.
(Either way, Roy Wood, Jr. promised me it will be fun.)
This post is inspired by my mom, whose grace, spirituality, resilience and style have been guiding, protecting and instructing me my whole life. Right now, more than ever, I am so proud to be her daughter and walk in her footsteps.
She taught me everything I know, and she’s the reason I am who I am.
Anything I am or become begins with everything she ever gave me.
I’m going into 2019 with my roots showing. And my silver streak. It’s the Dorothy Hill in me. And maybe a little Cardi B. I used to be hyper about covering up every real or perceived flaw, but no more. I was even hyper about these outfit posts. So I took a break to find out how to be all right with them being imperfect. That’s why the ones you see in this post aren’t quite magazine worthy. But they’re me. And they may be my favorites so far. You can say what you want but you’ll never say I’m not REAL, which was my word for last year.
2018 took a bite out of me but I gave as hard as I got: new job, Beyoncé, NOLA Girls’ Trip, a documentary that I am SO SO SO proud of, rebounding after surgery, planning my class reunion, 40 pound weight loss, new skills, new friends and a new personal style (thank you Fashion Nova!). I have a new outlook on life, love, success, failure, community and most and best of all: renewed faith. I learned what happens when you give it all to God and allow Him and the best loved ones a woman could have to carry the rest.
My word for 2019? BEYOND. The new year is going to surpass anything I could’ve dreamed, hoped or prayed for. YES, I’m reading Becoming, YES: I believe a bigger life is ahead for me, and YES: I’m going for it.
Buckle up. 2019 is gonna be a ride. I’m in the driver’s seat. And I ain’t apologizing for how I’m about to move.
Thank you for sharing the journey,