Memorial Day is this coming Monday, May 25. Memorial Day is the last Monday in May- a day we honor men and women who died while serving in the US Military.

Although parades and big get togethers won’t be happening this year, there are things you and your family can do to honor these fallen heroes: Get the kids involved with chalk art. Draw your best patriotic pictures on your sidewalk or driveway. Decorate your front porch/lawn in red, white and blue. Watch the National Memorial Day Concert at 8 p.m. Sunday, May 24 on PBS. Post a social media tribute in honor of someone you may know who died while serving our country. Fly a flag. Thank you to those who gave their lives so that we can live in the “land of the free and the home of the brave.”

Memorial Day also marks the beginning of summer, which means a good ol’ cookout, and that first freezer of homemade ice cream.

My family has two recipes we use.

The first one is vanilla and always a favorite. My Uncle Otis (My paternal grandmother,“Mongoes”, brother) made this one a lot. It’s easy and super delicious. 1 box of powdered sugar, 1 can eagle brand milk, 1 can carnation milk, 2 eggs (well beaten), 1½ teaspoons of vanilla (I think I “accidentally” put in a bit more). Stir together, put in your ice cream freezer can, fill the rest of the way up with milk and then freeze and enjoy. Don’t forget the rock salt and ice. I’ll share the second recipe next week.

“We’re not in isolation just because we’re in seclusion,” Rev. T.D. Jakes.

Several livestock shows and fairs are making plans now to have “business as usual”. For information on dates, animal validations, etc., you can visit the following websites: East Texas State Fair in Tyler- www.etstatefair.com; State Fair of Texas in Dallas- www.bigtex.com; Harvest Festival in Longview- www.harvestfestivallivestockshow.com

For those of you who are ready for some serious “retail therapy”, Canton Trade Days is set to open May 28-31.

No details on how many vendors will be there, but it’s a great outdoor experience and I’m sure the vendors are ready to go.

If you go, find the wonderful church group that makes fried pies; definitely worth the wait in line. My favorite is the apricot!

So far, we’ve been blessed with rather mild temperatures and regular rain showers. Gardens are doing well and yards and flowers are looking beautiful, especially the daylilies (one of my favorites).

The soil is almost warm enough to seed with Bermuda if you need to put in a lawn.

For areas that are on slopes or spotty places in your established yard, sod may be the way to go.

Contact your local nursery for more information on your options.

“If you want to lift yourself up, lift someone else up”. Booker T. Washington

As we start to open up as a state and as a nation, be aware of those around you. Implement safe practices as you go out and about and one day soon, I hope, we can shake hands and hug and enjoy fellowship like we did “back in the good ol’ days!”