Lost sheep, wonderers, angry people, those who hate America, snap out of it. Your shepherd is calling you. For you need guidance. America is the greatest land on the planet. Millions come here to live their dream because the blessings of hard work are rewarded.

My father was an 11th grade drop out. My mother was a teen mom who dropped out in the 9th grade. My mother-in-law never attended school after 4th grade, and she escaped a foreign land with little opportunity, because she saw the advantages of capitalism. A place where you can go from financially poor to financially rich. They all started life with many hardships, struggles, tribulations, life was unfair as some say, but they all shared something in common. They had a shepherd.

Never did they ask, “Who will feed me? Where are the government handouts? Who is going to help me?” They looked to the shepherd and he told them hard work is rewarded and you will eat. Never did they want to steal or covet what others had. They believed in the shepherd’s advice and word. They all ate well because of hard work. Sometimes it was steak, a can of sardines, a boiled egg, or a bowl of beans. The shepherd said that I provide food for all the birds, so I will provide food for you too, because you are my sheep. They had a shepherd.

My father learned a career as a machinist. Hard, demanding work, that often called for 12-hour workdays. Sometimes seven days a week. Yes, you read correctly. 84-hour work weeks. My mother earned her G.E.D. and worked as a teacher’s aide all while attending college part-time to become a teacher. My mother-in-law had many careers, because no education leaves little opportunity, but she was not a proud whiner or complainer. She was a hard worker! She found work regularly. She did well for herself considering her circumstances. They had a shepherd.

My dad often said, “I don’t give a damn what color a man is! If he does not apply himself, he will not amount to shit.” Today we often find people of color complaining about their lack of opportunity. Many are rioting. We hear the words “White Privilege.” My dad said that men who use those words are “LAZY” and looking for a “Crutch.” He also said, “Beware of people like that because they are “Hustlers and Swindlers. They will steal you blind if you don’t watch them.”  Lost sheep! They have no shepherd.

Growing up lower income white, I know that life is not fair, but I do not have time to dwell on it, because I am to busy working to make my life better. I often thought, where is this “White privilege?” My shepherd says, “Work hard.” My parents experienced more difficulty than me over their lifetime. My mother-in-law being from a foreign land knew it would be tough coming to America. She never used the words, “White Privilege.” Life is tough! My parents and mother-in-law believed in action because their shepherd told them that faith without works is useless. Hard work pays off. They had a shepherd.

In today’s word, I have little tolerance for those who use the words “White Privilege.” My dad was correct. Lazy people use those words. I have seen many people from all races do extremely well in America, and I have watched many people struggle, because they do nothing to improves themselves. They sit around like hogs at a trawl waiting for someone to sling them some slop. I will never admit to “White privilege” because like my father, mother, and mother-in-law. I have listened to the shepherd and hard work has blessed me. Color does not bless you. The shepherd and hard works bless you. Listen to the shepherd and work hard. You will be blessed. I do not care what color you are or what country you come from. These words ring true.

For my fellow brothers who say, “Yes there is white privilege.” I call on you to educate yourselves and not be brainwashed by false doctrine. The devil is trying to destroy your mind.  Never feel ashamed to be white. You are allowed to be proud of your race just as any other on the face of the Earth. If you honestly think there is “White Privilege”, I call on you to test the shepherd’s words and sit in the middle of a field doing nothing for one week. The shepherd tells us you will not eat if you do not work. If there is “White privilege” I imagine you will get three square meals a day in this field in the middle of nowhere just by chilling.

I am also an advocate and supporter of the police. The shepherd tells us to follow the authorities. Bad things happen when you fall into the trap of the lost sheep, break laws, and willfully become disrespectful. Many are angry at the police, but when you analyze the facts, almost all that have been killed, failed to abide by the law of the authorities which our shepherd says we must do. Do not bring the authorities to anger. Lost sheep! They have no shepherd.

Over time my parents who were married 49 years, who did not believe in divorce, because the shepherd advised against it, and my mother-in-law, listening to the advice of the shepherd, did well for themselves. They overcame numerous struggles. Hard work pays off. They had a shepherd.

All of them gave their children a free gift worth more than all the money on the planet. They told them sheep are lost without a shepherd. Men and women left to themselves on their own guidance are quite often a failure because we are naturally lost. We are born lost. Lost sheep! We need a shepherd.

Many lost sheep today look to their friends for answers. Often, their friends are as lost as they are. The blind leading the blind. I think I would be angry to if my advisor was a lost sheep. They have no shepherd. Their anger is directed at all sources and there is a failure to look within themselves and admit I am lost. Lost sheep! They have no shepherd.

My advice to the lost sheep is join the flock of the true shepherd. The only living God. Yes, you read that right. Jesus was not a statue, rock, stone, or whatever other things people put their faith in. He is God in the flesh. He came straight from Heaven because he knew we were lost and needed help. He left us a guide- book called the Holy Bible. It is loaded with life advice and countless examples for living. It is so thorough, that I myself, often refuse to buy any books from so called “Self-Help authors.” Many of them are lost sheep and some outright reject Jesus. Why do I want their advice? You can have an I.Q. that exceeds genius, but if you reject Jesus, and fail to read the Holy Bible through, at least one time in your life, you are an educated fool.

Second, I would advise channeling energy to learning skills and knowledge. Ask yourself when learning, “Can I use this to support myself?” You can learn much that is useless and will leave you broke. Focus on beneficial learning and stay away from those who are on the “Feel Sorry for Me” train or those who want to exploit you. I have encountered many of those along my way. They are a waste of time. Utterly lost sheep! Many of whom want no shepherd. They will just bring you to hell. Look at the riots. Perfect example. Hell. Definitely not heaven. Lost sheep!

There you have it! Free advice that will turn your life from chaos to pure joy and fulfillment. Faith in Jesus Christ and Hard work!

Are you going to continue a life of anger and frustration or channel your energy to heading down a new road of hard work and faith in Jesus Christ? The true shepherd and guide for us lost sheep.

Rip Van Winkle is a story written by Washington Irving in 1819, about a farmer who falls asleep in the Catskill Mountains of New York for 20 years, and he misses the whole American Revolution. Rip Van Winkle was played by actor Joseph Jefferson, over 4,500 hundred times, all over the world on stage. He purchased Orange Island, La in 1870 to make a hunting lodge, and to have a winter retreat. Eventually the Island was named Jefferson Island. It now has a rookery and the former home and gardens of Joseph Jefferson for tour. I enjoyed my visit tremendously! The Live Oaks and Spanish moss are worth the trip. It is beautiful! Here are a few photos from my visit including RIP’s rookery. For more information visit https://www.ripvanwinklegardens.com/

Lake Fausse Pointe State Park in St. Martinville, Louisiana is buried deep in the Atchafalaya basin. This is the place and home area to many of the swamp people you see on the T.V. show series Swamp People. It is a mystical area where wildlife abounds. As one local Cajun stated, “One doesn’t need a grocery store in these areas. We’ll survive. We have nutria, alligator, turtle, frogs, snakes, deer, hog, possum, coon (short for raccoon), honey, crawfish….and he went on. We have sugar cane, we have rice, we have all we need.” I believe this to, because the closet civilization is close to 25 miles away. Out here the night is so dark you cannot see your hands in front of you. You here sounds and movement but you cannot see. It creates much curiosity, but most of all the relaxation away from the big city is incredible. Here are a few photos from my trip. Two are outside of the park, but in the area. The bee boxes for honey and the Sugar Cane farm. For more information visit https://www.crt.state.la.us/louisiana-state-parks/parks/lake-fausse-pointe-state-park/index

Here are some random photos from my recent road trip through Louisiana. Years ago, I flew to many places, but soon learned I missed much by being stuck in a plane. Planes are necessary for certain things, but again, for me, nothing beats traveling by auto to see things I might not see otherwise. I also get a better feel for the culture and the people in the communities I visit. As you can see from the art a giant Crawfish, giant bass in Toledo Bend country, a homemade John-Deere Ice Cream machine, historical sites, beautiful Redbud trees, Pecan orchards, wide-open roads, and food you will find no place else, Louisiana is as unique as it is wonderful.

This quote by Anthony Bourdain from Parts Unknown, Season 11, Episode 7, sums up my experience, “One of the more awesome locations I’ve ever found,” Bourdain said about the grocery store. “The kind of breakfast spot I just love deeply.” For myself, I ate lunch there. I knew when I saw the Cajun pepper shaker filled with Cayenne Pepper, I was at the REAL DEAL. I could eat at Suire’s anytime, or day of the week. I had some of the best Turtle Sauce Piquant I have ever tasted in Cajun Country. I just loved how they separated my catfish, bread, and Chocolate cake with a piece of foil in my lunch box, so it would not blend with my Turtle Sauce Piquant and potato salad. You may say that is basic, but a lot of folks have no common sense, and they would mix it in many places. The owners are sister’s Joan Suire and Lisa Frederick. Two of the nicest ladies I have met. We shared conversation about Louisiana and how the long standing restaurant came into their hands. Joan told me, “I flunked out of college at 19, and my parents bought this restaurant for me, and I have been here ever since. I don’t know how to cook, but I can run a store.” Joan and her sister Lisa work together as a team to create a great Cajun atmosphere and delicious, authentic, Cajun food. Before I left, I loaded up some sweet goodies. My Blackberry Tart was exceptional in every way. I cannot wait for my next trip to Suire’s Grocery and Restaurant in Kaplan, La. Joan’s mother told her, “There will be one day when people will be just looking for us.” I was one. And that slogan,”If you want country cooking, come to the country!” So true! Thank you ladies! I’ll see you again.



My recent trip to the Cane River Historic Site was a great experience. I was able to learn many things. One of most amazing for me was the insulation methods using Bousillage. This is horse hair, Spanish Moss, and Clay mixed together to insulate and build homes. I learned that pigeons(squab) were raised for food, and if you had pigeons to eat you were wealthy. How about that? Amazing stuff! The plantation has the owners home, young family members home, overseers home, slave cabins, the store, pigeoneers house, corn crib, fattening pins, wash house, carriage house, the cook’s cabin, and well it is very complete piece of living history. I learned that some slaves enjoyed their owners and became sharecroppers after slaves were freed, while others had horrible masters. I learned that African-Americans also had plantations and even owned their own slaves. Did you know slaves were sold on the open market in Africa by fellow Africans to willing buyers? A few things I was never taught in history class. It seems I was always taught “THE ROOTS” version of history, but I don’t blame my teachers. They could only teach what they were taught, and maybe only teach what they were told to teach, but I am glad I can learn on my own. Here are a few photos from my recent trip. I hope you visit this piece of history. For more information visit https://www.nps.gov/crha/index.htm

Starting off let me say this….I love meat pies! I have heard about Lasyone’s legendary pies, service, and let me state for the record, they did not disappoint, or let me down. My Crawfish pie came out crisp and tasty. The pie seemed to have eight ounces of Crawfish tail meat in it. It was packed with Crawfish tails. The surprise was the side of jambalaya. It was so delicious! They also have excellent Po-Boys. The service was exceptional. Everywhere manners were evident. I have nothing bad to say. I’ll definitely make Lasyone’s Meat Pie Restaurant a go to stop when in Natchitoches. Here are few photos. Do have a meat pie in Natchitoches at Lasyone’s!

Kaffie-Frederick General Store, founded in 1863, is Louisiana’s oldest general store, located in Natchitoches, La. The store still has the original working elevator and cash register from 1910. Yes, you need to know how to count change. That seems to be a lost art. A trip into the store takes you back to a time when things were a litter slower and less complicated. I saw so many toys from the past. My children were amazed at the top. They had never seen one. Once I made it spin they laughed and enjoyed watching it spin. My favorite thing was buying a Coca-Cola in the bottle paying based on the honor system. For those of you who do not know, it means the store trusts you to be honest, and pay for what you take without cameras. A rarity in modern times. I include a photo of sheriff and police badges. When I was a child it was an honor to have one to wear and pretend to round up criminals with our cap guns. Today, we deal with police haters. Times have changed. Not for the better in my opinion. Here are a few photos from our visit. I hope they inspire you to travel to Natchitoches. Enjoy!

I have always wanted to visit the Historic town of Natchitoches, Louisiana, the capital of Spanish Texas (1729-1770), and part of the El Camino Real trail. Recently, I checked it off my bucket list. It is best known as the city of the filming of the 1989 hit movie Steel Magnolias. However, I must admit there is so much more, and I didn’t have enough time to spend there. The city is clean. The hospitality is exceptional. The food….is…..a….BIG….Yum! I just love it there! Here are a few photos I took around the city to share. Enjoy!

Cooking is not only a great thing to provide family or yourself something delicious to eat, but for me it provides relaxation after a day of work. For the past two years I have posted photos of some of the dishes that I have cooked that stood out to me for being a first time dish to something I just love to eat. This year I spent a lot of time playing with a Crock-Pot. There is nothing like prepping your food, dropping it in a pot, then coming home to a house filled with wonderful aromas. I also focused on my European roots when cooking dishes and dabbled with other international dishes which is common for me. The New Year’s often brings the tradition of Crock-Pot Black-Eyed Peas with Cornbread. The second photo is a Crock-Pot Chicken Apricot Tangine from Morocco. The third photo is a Japanese Okinawan dish called Goya Champura home to the most Centaurians in world. The fourth dish is Crock-Pot Beef Rouladen from Germany. The fifth dish is one of my favorite British dishes Fish and Chips with a side of peas. In Britain they often puree their peas. The sixth photo is Baked Lemon Pepper Garlic Whitefish with Tomato and Spinach on a bed of Couscous which is very Mediterranean. The seventh photo is a Crock-Pot Korean BBQ Short Ribs. The eighth photo is Italian Crock-Pot Minestrone Soup. The ninth photo is a traditional Irish Corned Beef meal. The tenth photo is Mexican Beef and Shrimp Tacos with Black Beans, Corn, and Cojita Cheese. The eleventh photo is Greek Salad with Boiled Shrimp. The Twelfth photo is Crock-Pot French Cassoulet Soup. The thirteenth photo is a German Reuben Sandwich with a side of Chips. The fourteenth photo is Beef and Chicken Kabobs with Kale and Couscous. The fifteenth photo is Chicken Fried Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Corn, Green Beans, and Pan Dripping Milk Gravy. The sixteenth photo is Four Cheese Ham and Peas Penne pasta from Italy. All of the recipes can be found readily online. I hope these photos inspire you to get in the kitchen. Bon Appetite!