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March 10, 2010 / dcwisdom

Paper Roses and the Tulip Tree

How weird, I thought.  I’m walking into Wal-Mart singing, and I mean singing where I could be heard, Paper Roses.   Not blasting, mind you, but if you just happened to walk close enough to me, you could have heard me.

Driving to Wal-Mart, my radio was off.  Walking through the parking lot, that silly song just came to my brain and off I go…

but they’re only
like your imitation love
for me
How random is that?  Have you ever wondered how things just *pop* into your mind?  Do you remember weird stuff? 
Like, I remember one boy named Steve that liked me when I was 14.  We would sit by each other at lunch, and one time on the bus, we held hands.  His fingers were short and stubby, and I remember thinking what a fat hand he had.   He also wore thick glasses.
Or the time in fifth grade when I accidentally kicked our only class soccer ball onto the building’s rooftop, and my old teacher, Mrs. Drake, who had wickedly long painted fingernails, came to me in class and pinched the beegeebees out of my arm and was mad at me all day.  She scolded, “I’ll have to ask the maintenance man to get on the roof to get the ball down!”  We didn’t know things about post-menopausal things back then, but that must have been what she suffered from.
Or the days in junior high when I would sneak my mom’s nylons from her bathroom and wear them to school under my fishnets.   At school, I would take the fishnets off and wear hose all day.  Very grown up.   Boy, those old nylons would sag at the knees and only attach with a garter belt.  But I know they made me especially beautiful, if you didn’t look at my skinny legs and boney knees.
One summer, my mom actually made my bathing suit from cotton fabric.  It was about the color of the tulip tree flowers.  The top was all right enough, but the bottoms were made like little girl panties, and they held the pool water like a water balloon.  The boys would call me ‘water butt.’  “There goes water butt!”
Or the time I ran my bike into a trailerload of canoes in a parking lot.  Don’t even ask.
My tulip tree (which is actually a type of magnolia) has opened her first spring buds.  Isn’t she beautiful!?  The willow tree has budded, too.  The paper whites are happy along with the daffodils. 
Today, I planted Chinese fringe, camelias, shrub rose, and dahlias while Mary rode her bike around the neighborhood.  Thank goodness, this time she wasn’t dog bitten. 
Paper roses
Paper roses
Oh how real those roses seem to be
See you good people in the funny papers.


  1. Noni at The Brick Street Bungalow / Mar 12 2010 9:20 AM

    LOL! Those stories are too good, Debbie!! And, your tulip trees are beautiful!!! Isn't it just amazing how everything it popping open? I love it! And, I love that billboard for Atlanta! AMEN!!Have you ever gone to the cemetery in Scottsville. It is one of my favorite places in the world. The small chapel there is exquisite… and there is an angel headstone that just makes me weep. Glad to have caught up a little!

  2. Rayanne / Mar 12 2010 5:30 AM

    I love your stories, I always feel so loved when I come to visit! Just like we have known each other forever and all the friends hear. You know me….I love flowers,oh and pink ones!!!

  3. Debbie / Mar 12 2010 3:56 AM

    It's called OCD and they have meds for that! :)You are so funny. I always say going to Walmart is like going to the circus. I think I've seen everything and then I go there and get surprised again. Wonder who you surprised with your little song. I can't believe that lady pinched you! Nice tree; and that magnolia in your other picture was huge!Debbie

  4. jerriann / Mar 11 2010 7:55 PM

    Crap girl, you are too funny. I need a daily dose of your humor. Love your post. Love your phots. The blooms are beautiful.BTW, Chemo is tomorrow, sorry I've been meaning to get over here and tell you. Sorry for letting you think it was Tuesday all week. Thank you for the prayers.

  5. Jeanette / Mar 11 2010 2:48 PM

    Debbie,Are you sure Mrs.Drake wasn't bipolar? Sounds like a mean ole biddy to me (as my Daddy would say). :o)Talking about songs in your head – what's weird is singing a stuck song, turning on the car radio and it's playing the exact line of song that you're singing. It's happened to me more than once. Can anybody say Twilight Zone?!

  6. Tara / Mar 11 2010 7:56 AM

    Your tulip tree is gorgeous. Great photos! Isn't the brain such a wonderful mystery. So odd how old memories just pop up out of no where sometimes at the oddest times. I have songs in my head all day long. I will be singing out loud too and not even realize it. Guess I am trying to keep a song in my heart at all times!Hugs,Tara

  7. Nola @ the Alamo / Mar 11 2010 7:30 AM

    Oh, I get songs in my mind like that sometimes and they are there the whole day!Haha! I remember how big a deal it was to get a garter belt; you were practically grown! Then came fishnets, and we'd wear 'em until they were all snagged and holey! Doesn't seem all that long ago, does it?

  8. Vickie / Mar 11 2010 7:20 AM

    Hey girl – I do need that photo of your Jane Magnolia blooming. I bought one last year and it was blooming and then either the summer wind dried it up or the winter wind froze it. It did not come out and it's deader'n doornail. We always have wind on Sand Flat Farm. I'd like another but I'm going to have to put it in a place where it's more protected…I'm fixin' to get me some chinese fringe, too. I love those. I may try a few azaleas & just see how they do before I buy a bunch. It's sandy and hot around our place. I'd really have to do some soil amending to take on azaleas.How 'bout I trade you some catalpa trees for some pines??? Pines prefer more clay than sand I think. We've got a couple, but mostly catalpa, hackberry and chinaberry. I don't want the sweetgums. We've got plenty of those, too, and cat-claw vine down by the pond. ugh. Tony & boys cleaned out a bunch of it last year, but it was like they pruned it and it came back even more! I hate that stuff.Oh well, the Lord made it all for a reason and I'm thankful we have any trees at all!

  9. Stacey at Living by Faith / Mar 11 2010 7:07 AM

    I enjoyed reading those little snapshots of your life. I remember my first grade teacher telling me I couldn't go to the bathroom. I really had to go, so I got up to go anyway. She grabbed my arm, and I heard my sleeve rip. No way could teachers do that now!

  10. Deb / Mar 11 2010 4:47 AM

    a fun walk down memory lane…you know teachers were mean when we were in school…they would go to jail now…lovely tree…and good song…now it is in my head….maybe I will sing it when I go to walmart today…LOL…we can start a trend…

  11. Walking on Sunshine... / Mar 11 2010 3:27 AM

    I love your tree! Very pretty. And yes, sometimes a song will just pop into my head and I'll be thinking of my life was going through when I first heard the song. Our memories are amazing! Enjoy your day!

  12. Carol Conway-Fleisher / Mar 11 2010 1:50 AM

    What fun memories. Isn't it amazing what memories a song can trigger?

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