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MelindaB

Reading Maketh a Full Man...

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Currently reading

The Discarded Image: An Introduction to Medieval and Renaissance Literature (Canto)
C.S. Lewis
Boys and Girls Learn Differently!: A Guide for Teachers and Parents
Michael Gurian, Terry Trueman, Patricia Henley
Ambition and Survival: Becoming a Poet
Christian Wiman
Deep River: The Life and Music of Robert Shaw
Keith C. Burris
Daring, Trusting Spirit
John De Gruchy
The Vatican Diaries: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Power, Personalities, and Politics at the Heart of the Catholic Church
John Thavis
The Whisperers: Private Life in Stalin's Russia
Orlando Figes

Being Dead Is No Excuse: The Official Southern Ladies Guide To Hosting the Perfect Funeral

Being Dead Is No Excuse: The Official Southern Ladies Guide To Hosting the Perfect Funeral - Gayden Metcalfe This book is a lighthearted read, bringing laughs and chuckles and remembrances of recipes all having to do with Southern funerals. The title indicates that "being dead is no excuse to have a poor funeral". So you should plan, be prepared, and make use of the tips and advice from these two Southern ladies. If you are from the Mississippi Delta area, or have family in the deep South, then you will find common ground laughing through chapters like "The Methodist Ladies vs. the Episcopal Ladies" and "Comfort Foods: There is a Balm in Campbell's Soup"!Advice includes what kinds of music to use or avoid (do have "O God our help in ages past", "Lift High the Cross", and "For All the saints", but avoid "The Battle Hymn of the Republic", "Beautiful Isle of Somewhere", and "On Eagle's Wings"). Wondering what flowers are appropriate? Avoid carnations with or without glitter or any eternal (artificial) flowers. Traditional bouquets of roses or a covering for the coffin woven from yardlike flowers are deemed very tasteful and appropriate for the well-bred Southerner. A last word of advice? "A good rule of thumb if you want to have a perfect Southern funeral: No hymns composed after 1940"!The section on appropriate funeral foods is really where this book made me laugh hardest. "The Eternal Pantry -- A legacy for your children" has lists of foods to have on hand so that you are ready at a moment's notice to whip up that comforting funeral food for the family left behind. A slightly different pantry is stocked by Methodist ladies (boxed cake mixes and cream soups are staples) than is stocked by the Episcopal ladies (no store bought mixes). Items include ritz crackers, yellow cake mix, green beans, cream of mushroom and chicken and pretty much ANY creamed soup, French's canned french fried onions, pimentos, and slivered almonds. A note at the end of that section indicates that "if you combine any three items of like value on this list, you're likely to have made a funeral casserole"!In each section, detailed recipes are included, which include my favorite "Vodka Cake" (prepared by the Episcopal ladies), the Methodist Ladies' Chicken Lasagna Florentine (butter pecans on top of lasagna?!?!?), poulet John Wesley (fried chicken, THE ecumenical dish), and Can't-Die-Without-It Caramel Cake.Inbetween recipes, songs to sing (or avoid), are hilarious happenings at various funerals. In many I seemed to recognize some of my own relatives, for good or ill!So I recommend this book for a good laugh and some good recipes! And I think I'll go check my pantry now to make sure I have the appropriate funeral comfort food!