Fried Green Tomatoes and Stuff

Katie and I watched Fried Green Tomatoes last night. It’s times like that when I love having a daughter. Oh, I suppose there are other times I love having a daughter, too. But chillin’ together with a chick flick is just fun.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve seen this movie, but watching it brings up such pleasant memories and emotions. Some things in life are pure Southern – things I’d never even heard of growing up in California. Things like chiggers, crawdads, fried okra, sweet tea that can pass for pancake syrup, kudzu, fried green tomatoes…

There’s a little town just east of Little Rock called Scott that reminds me of the little town in the movie. In Scott you can find a shack of a famous restaurant, the back of which is on stilts over a creek, called Cotham’s Mercantile. It was built in 1917, has been a general store, a jail and a military commissary. Regardless of how primitive, the joint is always jumping. I’ve seen it packed from wall to wall with distinguished business people from Little Rock and farmers alike.

Every time I see Fried Green Tomatoes I think of Cotham’s. They even serve – you guessed it – fried green tomatoes.

Another thing about the movie is the mythical warrior Towanda they call on for courage. When I was going through chemotherapy I was part of a wonderful on-line community of women who all started treatment in June of 2005. Towanda was a part of our kicking cancer’s butt attitude.

The day after my last treatment, November 23, 2005, my family took me to a Build-A-Bear where I was told to pick out whichever animal I wanted. I chose a white teddy bear and when we had it stuffed Todd pulled out four sound chips – one for each paw. He and the kids had recorded messages about my courage and how much they loved me.

I named the bear Towanda because she’s a symbol of how I had gone all Bruce Lee, Jet Lee and Tommy Lee on my cancer. She sits next to my glider in the sitting room and I see her every morning – assuming I get out of my pajamas. And now Katie gets why I named the bear Towanda.


Todd was out of town on business and Taylor was at a Student Leadership meeting at church last night. I had told Taylor to come tell me goodnight when he got home because I was pretty sure I’d be watching TV in bed by then. I heard him come in, heard the lock click and the porch light switch clack, heard him go into the kitchen and I relaxed. I promptly fell asleep, only to be jarred awake by this big kid jumping onto the bed to tell his mama goodnight.

As shocking as that was I must admit I loved it. Here’s my baby boy who is taller than I am; has a girlfriend; is starting to think about college and what he may want to be when he grows up; and I saw a glimpse of the little boy he used to be. We chatted for a little bit — or he chatted and I mumbled — and then he kissed me, said, “I love you”, went off to bed and I fell back to sleep with a big grin on my face.


Hangin’ and giggling with the girl and getting some mama love from the boy. Yeah. It’s good to be me.


  1. Cmommy on September 26, 2007 at 9:53 pm

    Oh, I’m so glad that you got good ‘mommy moments’ with the girl and the boy!!Your comments always encourage me. Yes, the tissues are Puffs with lotion and the chocolate is new–Russell Stover internationale German Black Forest Truffle. I have enough for everyone! 🙂

  2. Gretchen on September 27, 2007 at 12:02 am

    Thanks for this sweet post to help end my day. You are an amazing woman and mother, Jenster. You.just.are. That old cancer never had a chance against you, God, and Towanda. xxxooogretchen

  3. Becky on September 27, 2007 at 12:15 am

    Jenster, sounds like you have a wonderfully supportive family. There’s nothing better than good mom-moments with the kids…and even better is that you still have them! Some kids aren’t as fortunate to grow up in homes where they have such a rapport with their parents…but you obviously have wonderful relationships with each family member. It IS good to be you! You da mom! MMmmm…I LOVE fried green tomatoes (the movie and the food!) My grandma used to fix them for us fresh out of the garden. Good memories, good memories.

  4. Lori on September 27, 2007 at 12:21 am

    Ahhh, isn’t it the best when the boys forget how grown up they are and just be their mommy’s little boy for a few minutes? We always know they’ll go right back to our far-too-grownup young men, but I love those few minutes that come every now and again. Glad you had a great night with your kids 🙂

  5. Rosie on September 27, 2007 at 12:27 am

    How cool is that? See three hour car rides to Sonic are the ties that bind. 🙂

  6. CindyS on September 27, 2007 at 12:55 am

    Wow, you and your hubby done good with those kids 😉 Glad you got to see the little boy again tonight and watching a chick lit with another woman/girl always rocks!cindyS

  7. Dev on September 27, 2007 at 1:04 am

    Fried Green Tomatoes is one of my favorite movies ever. It’s one of those that I love to watch on a lazy day, curled up in my fuzzy blanket and flannel pajamas with a hot cup of tea.

  8. Jenster on September 27, 2007 at 7:37 am

    cmommy – Your comments always encourage me.Right back at ya!Gretchen – You’re making me all vaklemped!Becky – God is good, no??Lori – When I read about you and Jeff sometimes I think you’re me! lolRosie – Yeah!! So it wasn’t a wasted car ride after all!! :o)Cindy – I would love to take all the credit, but I have to say it’s by God’s grace. Truly. We’re just not quite that smart. lolDev – I had DVR’d the movie, but when it was over Katie said we need to buy it so we can watch it this winter when it’s cold! Great minds must think alike. :o)

  9. Terri on September 27, 2007 at 11:53 am

    One of my best memories was when my little JoJo (25 or 26 at the time)was home on leave (Marine) after a deployment. When he woke up in the morning, he stumbled down the hall to my room and crawled onto the bed with me – just like when he was little. We talked probably an hour before his younger brother came and jumped on the bed between us. Good times! Enjoy them while you can, they grow up and leave home way too fast!

  10. Monnik on September 27, 2007 at 12:37 pm

    I love this post, Jen. It’s so amazingly cheerful and thankful and all of that. You are an inspirational person, and I’m so glad I’ve found you in bloggerland.And I love your kids…Towanda. That’s freaking awesome.

  11. Judye on September 27, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    Jenster, that was a feel good story. thanks for posting it. It brought back some warms moments with my own son and daughter.God bless you. J

  12. Jenster on September 27, 2007 at 2:16 pm

    Terri – I can see it perfectly in my mind’s eye and it makes me giggle. :o)Monnik – You gotta stop, girl! You’re making me blush! lol Thank you very much for your sweet words.Judye!! Glad you stopped by and especially glad I could call up some nice memories for you. And God bless you, too!

  13. Lynilu on September 27, 2007 at 2:41 pm

    What a wonderful group of stories! It is good to love and be loved. It can kick bu** on any infliction, I believe. I’m glad you’re you, too. BTW, I love Fried Green Tomatoes, the movie AND the real thing. And fried okra. And crawdads. But you can keep the chiggers (I’m deathly allergic.), and the sweet tea (I’m already sweet enough!! giggle), and the kudzo (just because). Happy smiles!

  14. Jenster on September 27, 2007 at 3:53 pm

    Lynilu – I’m so with you on the chiggers, sweet tea and kudzu. :o)

  15. slackermommy on September 28, 2007 at 1:59 pm

    Fried Green Tomatoes is my favorite movie, ever! I love how it inspired your life.

  16. The Daily "B" on September 28, 2007 at 4:32 pm

    I love the movie Fried Green Tomatoes. I’ve never tried them myself, someday I will… That little town in AK sounds fun, I think I am going to google it.

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