Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Thursday14 6, 2010

My New Sites

Please check out my new sites at:

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Saturday13 6, 2010

No More Squidoo

Squidoo is no longer in business and its members have scattered to various sites, some have gone to buying and building their own sites. Mine are and

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Thursday13 6, 2010

Stinkin’ Thinkin’

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Saturday11 6, 2010

What’s the best way to blow off steam when you’re angry?

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Wednesday10 6, 2010

Sorrowful days

My sister Becky passed away on April 14, 2010, in Evansville, IN. In my grief I had to pack to go to the funeral,  driving all the way from Las Vegas to Indiana in about 30 hours. We cannot fly as my lung condition prevents it. I spent time with her families (kids, grandkids, great-grandkids), and found it a sad thing that we will move heaven and earth to gather together for the dead, but make no such herculean effort to gather for the living.

However, it was comforting to be with my relatives, though it hurt that she was not there, because she always was…

Had she lived, she would have been 82 years old the 14th of May. She helped raise me, as I told in my story “Putting Away Childish Things,” written in the ’90s.  Momma had a total of seven children including a set of twins (boy and girl) and a boy who died in infancy. Since I was the baby of the family, I never knew the three who died. My only knowledge of siblings were my two brothers, Bill and Calvin (known as C.W.), and my sister Becky.

With God and my sister’s spirit, I managed to speak at her funeral. I read my story about her selfless raising of her baby sister, when times were hard and Momma had to work. There were no child care organizations in those days, families helped each other. My sister was 11 years older than me, and she gave up her youth to be a second mom to me. She ran the house, cooked and cleaned, washed and ironed, and always, always, put me to bed with a hug and a kiss at night. She was 15 years old when she did all this. And believe me, it was not an easy task. Remember, this was back in the 1940’s and there were none of the  labor saving devices we have now. We lived in a Kentucky coal mine town, where we had to carry in our drinking and washing water from a spigot outside, and carry in coal by the bucket to heat our homes. There were no automatic dishwashers, or washing machines and dryers. Every dish had to be washed and dried by hand, every piece of clothing, bed clothes, blankets, quilts, etc. had to be washed in an agitator/wringer washer for which you first had to carry in and heat the water being used. Each piece was put through the washer wringer, rinsed in another tub, run through the wringer once more, into another rinse tub, and finally through the wringer to be hung outdoors on a clothesline. This was the routine, spring, summer, fall, winter, no matter how cold or hot the weather became. The only thing that postponed a regular washday was rain…that just meant you had less time to get the work done that week.

This is an example of the hard work  that was the story of my sister’s life. She raised 5 children, struggling each day to make ends meet. She lived her entire life taking care of others, and never expected anyone to take care of her. I’m so glad that during her lifetime, she managed to come to Las Vegas to visit me a few times, and we took her sightseeing  here,  and to Disneyland, Grand Canyon, and Death Valley. For probably the only time in her life, she was able to just relax and have a good time.  I’m glad that I was able to do that for her.

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Saturday10 6, 2010

Sister’s Birthday

Had she lived, today would have been my sister’s 82nd birthday. It’s still hard to believe that she’s gone. Sometimes I find my hand reaching for the phone, to call her and see how she’s doing, before I realize I can no longer do that. What do you do when a whole chunk of your life no longer exists? Well, you think back on the good times, the times you had together, the tears, the laughter, the closeness. And you realize you will always have those feelings and memories, no matter that there is no chance for new ones. Dear sister, I hope you are resting, no longer in pain, and making a place for your little sister when the time comes.

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Friday10 6, 2010

Love For Elvis Is Tender ~ written for The Las Vegas Sun, July 27, 1980

By Nancy Hardin, Assistant SUN Entertainment Director

The blue and gold days of the 50s…Crinolines, bobby sox, rock ‘n roll, Elvis Presley…In my town you either loved or hated Elvis, there was no in-between.

I was one of the legions who loved him. He was the cause of my first and only scrapbook, put together with loving care from everything about him I could get my hands on. I kept that scrapbook until long after my marriage, and when it mysteriously disappeared, I always suspected my husband. After all, how many husbands can put up with going to an Elvis movie on their wedding night, without somehow retaliating?

After moving to Las Vegas some years ago, I finally managed to see my hero in a live performance. Well…it’s true I was way up in the balcony of the Hilton, and the figure in the spotlight was awfully small, but to someone who had grown up idolizing him without a chance of actually being in the same room with him, it was pure heaven.

On vacation recently, we drove through Memphis, Tenn., and stopped to see Elvis’ home, Graceland. The mansion is surrounded by a graffiti-covered stone wall, located on busy Elvis Presley Boulevard (what else!).

At the gate, a young man was handing out cards for a free souvenir from one of the many stores across the street. We accepted ours and went through the gate.

The house sits far back on a green and shady lawn, and the single driveway splits and curves around both sides.  So beautiful and peaceful…But! There are signs warning the public to stay on the right-hand driveway, that if they are caught on the left one, they will be arrested for trespassing and all cameras and film will be taken from them.

We stayed on the allotted driveway and followed it around to the backyard. A grave-size granite square, topped by a metal plaque a few inches smaller, is buried in the ground. The plaque reads in part ~ “Elvis Aaron Presley – Jan. 8, 1935 – Aug. 16, 1977 – Son of Vernon Elvis Presley and Gladys Love Presley – Father of Lisa Marie Presley.” A similar one beside it is for Vernon Presley.

A smiling woman was having her picture taken beside the grave. Further on, an Oriental man dressed in spectacular Elvis style – down to the long-curved sideburns and sunglasses, also was having his picture taken in various strategic spots, and in poses imitating the stance of his idol.

Quietly, behind my sunglasses, I cried a little for the memory of the man who was the focus of all the hullabaloo.

My head had accepted his death long ago, now my heart had to follow. It’s just not that easy to say goodbye to your youth. But I will forever be grateful for the memories he left us, and to have lived during the same golden years as the King.

Author’s note: Graceland’s interior was not open to the public at that time, but has since been opened. Happy 75th Birthday, Elvis.

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Saturday09 6, 2010

Disrespect: When Is It Okay?

Just some thoughts about disrespect…

Joe Wilson is catching an awful lot of heat for his shout out to President Obama, “You lie.” He should’ve hid his remarks in carefully couched terms that would have been more acceptable to  the Obama rock star groupies . After all, isn’t that what they did with George W. Bush?

Disrespect? There was more than enough of that going around the nation and the media when President Bush was in office. He was laughed at, called names, depicted as a total dolt. Did anyone get upset over that? No. Did anyone get upset when a shoe (the greatest disrespect in Iraq) was thrown at him during a speech. No, we laughed and thought it was funny.

When is disrespect okay? Only when the President is not a great orator, or is not slick and witty, or doesn’t have TV star looks? Why does President Obama deserve the greatest respect for being the President, when George W. Bush did not? Do we respect the office, or the person? Let’s take Bill Clinton for example. Now there’s a man you could have disrespected for his personal lack of morals. But there wasn’t much of that. Most people said, “That’s his personal life and has nothing to do with the office.” He was also a man, like Obama,  with the personal charm and magnetism that hold the public’s attention.

In the military, there are  officers who are not liked by the enlisted personnel, but they are saluted when passed, because it’s the uniform and what it stands for being given respect, not the person wearing it.  Shouldn’t the same respect be given to the Office of the President, no matter how attractive or unattractive the person who bears that honor?

Maybe we should rethink the whole concept of the Presidency and the Constitution, and only elect handsome, dynamic men who get the public’s RESPECT, and leave the country boys who don’t have the power of oratory to the sticks where they came from. But then, where would we be without Harry Truman, and a great many of our greatest Presidents back to the first George (Washington)?  Just some thoughts to mull over about disrespect….

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Friday09 6, 2010

9.11: Fly The Flag and Never Forget

On that beautiful sunny day, I woke to my son’s frantic urgings, “Wake up Momma, we’re being attacked. Wake up!! You gotta see this!” He had the TV going full blast with the news of a plane hitting one of the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. As I stumbled out of bed, blearily rubbing my eyes, we sat down to watch. I had just said to him, something about it being a terrible accident, when we saw the second plane approach the other tower and crash into it. We both realized this was no accident. But still, I asked, are you sure this isn’t a movie? He just looked at me…then in a deadly serious tone of voice, “Mom, this is not a movie.” In silence, we watched terrified people run from the area.  And in stunned disbelief, we watched the towers disintegrate into piles of rubble. As the news continued to come in, we heard of a plane crashing into the Pentagon, then one crashing into a Pennsylvania field. We began to wonder if the world was coming to an end. What was happening and who was doing this to our country?

I know that many of you went through similar reactions the morning of 9.11.01. If you are anything like me, you cried several times before the day was over, for all the people whose lives ended that day. Here was a useless, senseless act against a nation who, throughout the years, has contributed mightily to the economy of other nations. We rebuilt entire countries from the ground up, after they were decimated by war with those who intended to annex them. We have given our best, our young men and women, to defend those countries, that they might enjoy the freedoms we have.   Now the terrorists have breached our borders and taken lives right here on our own land.

Eight years later, this is not another National Night Out, or Help Your Neighbor Day that we remember on 9.11.09.   No, this is about remembering the atrocity that happened to our loved ones, through no fault of their own. This is about a heinous attack that should burn in our hearts and minds, so that we take whatever steps necessary to prevent it  happening again. So, when someone suggests honoring 9.11 by doing community work, or donating to charity, I will tell them, “There is a time and place for those activities, and I do all those things. But 9.11.01 should never be forgotten for what it was: an unprovoked, catastrophic attack on our homeland and people. I shall fly the flag and honor them by never forgetting!”

Posted by: Nancy Hardin | J000000Monday09 6, 2010

Labor Day: Musings of past jobs

Today is Labor Day,  honoring the American worker. Well, I’m retired and have no job now,  but did my share back when. I’ve been, at various times in my life, a factory worker, a cashier, an office worker, a bartender,  a secretary,  an Independent Beauty Consultant, an advertising account executive,  a copy editor,  a newspaper staff writer,  a member of the Women’s Army Corps,  and last, but certainly not least,  a MOM.  I gave everything I had to give to each of those occupations, though there were some I enjoyed more than others.

Of them all, the best is being a Mom, and  the others that stand out are the two associated with the newspaper and the Women’s Army Corps ( the precursor to today’s unisex U.S. Army.) I’ll tell those stories another time. Today I’ll concentrate on the most difficult.

Some folks think being a mom is not a bonafide job, but believe me, anyone who has kids can tell you,  it’s the hardest you will ever work,  for the least amount of pay. But this job is not done for pay, it’s a labor of love from the time the little ones make their entrance into the world.  And in the end, the compensation is unmeasurable  in dollars and cents. My greatest “pay” is yet to come,  after I’m gone, in the accomplishments of my children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren and those as yet unborn. This is residual pay to the nth degree, that no job, past, present or future could ever offer.  Happy Labor Day to all you parents, as well as our other laborers.

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