Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Eating In The Presence of Enemies

The following post is one of my favorite stories. It's a nod to what used to be one of my favorite restaurants in Portsmouth, VA, The Circle. It's closed now, unfortunately, but I still have many memories of meals after church on Sundays and celebrations with friends and family. I hope you enjoy the story and that it adds some laughter to your day. 

There’s nothing I enjoy more than going out to dinner to one of my favorite restaurants. There’s one in the city where I used to live named “The Circle Restaurant.”. The food there is absolutely the best. They have a great variety of selections and everything tastes like plain home cooking. On Sundays they have the best buffet in town. You can get anything from roast beef to, of course my favorite, fried chicken. There’s usually a line but it’s well worth the wait. 

One particular Sunday afternoon I remember we decided to stop at the Circle for their buffet. Robbie Lee and I waited patiently in line along with the other hungry guests for about fifteen minutes and then we were finally shown to our table. The front of the restaurant is actually shaped in a somewhat circular fashion with the tables lined up beside one another along the walls in front of a huge window. This is the only thing I don’t really like about the restaurant. The tables are too close to each other. You actually feel like you have to join in on the other party’s conversation because you can hear every word. You’re practically sitting in their laps, but I endure this inconvenience because the food is so good. 

Once we told the waitress that we were having buffet, we were off and running to the goodies spread out before us. I skipped right past the salads and made my way to the main dishes, like fish, chicken livers, roast beef, fried chicken and the best stewed tomatoes you ever put in your mouth. I filled up my plate quickly because I was about to pass out from starvation. So I headed back to my table, leaving Robbie Lee still pouring over the salads. 

I smiled at the people seated at the table next to ours as I passed them. They were already eating and they gave me just a quick and polite half smile. You know the kind that people flash at you when they have no idea who you are and the smile fades almost before you have a chance to see it. Anyway, I turned quickly to sit down, and once seated, I couldn’t believe my eyes. The people, at whom I had just smiled and who were earlier casually eating their dinner, now had glasses, plates and food turned upside down on them and all across the once nice white table cloth. I thought to myself, “I wonder what could have happened to their table in such a short time. They looked fine when I smiled at them earlier, but now their whole table is in a disaster.”  Then I noticed that they were glaring at me. “Why are they staring at me with such indignation? I didn’t do anything.” Suddenly it dawned on me. My pocketbook had a long strap on it and, apparently, as I swung around to sit down, my pocketbook swung across their table, destroying everything in sight. 

“I’m so sorry. Please, let me help you clean up,” I cried. My face felt like it was about to explode from embarrassment. Everyone was staring now. “I’ll be glad to pay for any dry cleaning bills you might have.” 

“Please, just leave us alone. We’ll take care of everything,” one of the ladies replied. 

I took my seat again, but I didn’t know what to do with myself. After all, they were seated right next to me. Of course, Robbie Lee was still lingering up at the buffet table, chatting with someone, not knowing that her sister was causing enough chaos out here to get us thrown out on our heads. “I wish she’d hurry up and come back to the table so I won’t have to endure this embarrassment alone,” I whispered under my breath. But Robbie Lee continued to linger over the food, chatting away. 

“Are you sure there’s nothing more I can do for you?” I pleaded, wanting them to let me do something to make up for the mess I had made. 

“No, please. Just leave us alone,” the woman again requested, looking at me like she wanted to knock me down in the middle of the room and beat me to a bloody pulp. So I decided it would be best to leave her be. 

I tried to begin eating, but it was so difficult with the whole restaurant staring and pointing. Finally, Robbie Lee came and sat down in front of me. 

“Hey, what happened to them? Was there a tornado or something?” Robbie Lee said loudly. 

The people at the next table just glared in my direction. 

“Shhhh! I did that. I destroyed their entire table with my pocketbook. I’m so humiliated.” 

“You did it? Oh, no. Can we do anything to help you?” Robbie Lee blurted out to the woman who had already given me a threatening look if I ever suggested that again. 

“Robbie Lee, be quiet! They don’t want our help. Let’s just eat and get out of here, please,” I said, hiding my face with my hands. 

We both tried to eat, but it felt like the whole world was watching us. 

“Your face is really red,” Robbie Lee pointed out. 

“Thank you, but I realize my face is very red because it feels like it’s on fire. Can we talk about something else, please?” 

“OK, guess who I ran into waiting in the buffet line?” Robbie Lee asked, quickly changing the subject. 


“Sherry. You remember her. I went to high school with her. She was telling me she’s married now and they live in Longwood homes.” 

“Longwood homes?” I said louder than I meant to. “Who’d she marry, a millionaire?” I asked, laughing out loud. 

Now Robbie Lee’s face was beet red. “No,” she said in a hushed tone. “She married the man sitting right next to you.” 

As Robbie Lee pointed at the man right beside me who was now staring at me even harder, I tried my best to sink underneath the table. I wished the napkin had been bigger so I could cover myself up in it and just disappear from sight. But I couldn’t. I just tried not to catch his eyes as I shoveled my food into my mouth to keep me quiet. 

But then something terrible happened. Robbie Lee got the giggles and she passed them along to me. Every time we looked at each other, we would just lose it. The people next to us were getting madder and madder because they thought we were laughing at them. I kept trying to explain in between our bursts of laughter that we weren’t actually laughing at them, but they weren’t buying it. Robbie Lee and I finally just gave up, asked for our checks and left. We screamed in laughter all the way home. I was so humiliated, but at the same time the whole thing was so comical.

If nothing else, I sure learned a lesson from that experience. Now when I go out to dinner, I always carry just a small purse in my hand, I make no sudden moves and I never look the other person in the eye. 


JOHN 9:25 



Everything in life is not so easily seen. I mean to say, there are times when we don’t have all of the pieces to the big picture and we slam right into the unexpected. It’s usually right at the time we think we have life on a string and things seem to be going our way. Maybe we get cocky and careless. We forget to look both ways, or to pay closer attention, or to pray or read our bibles. We fail to heed the warning signs and the next thing we know, we’ve been hit head on by an unidentified flying object. 

Never let yourself get to the place in your life that you think you have all the answers, or that you’re too good to take the wise counsel of a Godly friend. If you become too comfortable in your life style, and become lazy or too relaxed to pay needed attention to the spiritual details, you may find yourself heading down the wrong track and before you realize it, you’ve come face to face with something too big for you to get around. You can be stopped dead in your tracks while running on the fast lane. Don’t let it happen to you. Take the time to read the Word and to find some quiet time with God. Nurture your spiritual life so when the time comes you’ll recognize the warning signs along the way. Then, instead of crashing directly into life, you’ll be guided by the Holy Spirit around those obstructions in the roadway. You’ll have a clearer vision of where you’re going and the best way to get there. 

(Excerpt from Life is a Buffet So Save Room for Dessert: All rights reserved.)

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

My Interview on Morning Moments

I recently had the privilege of being interviewed by Andy Kirkendall on his Morning Moments program. It was loads of fun with laughs and learning about stepping out of your comfort zone. 

Check out my interview on Morning Moments by Andy Kirkendall

Friday, February 19, 2021

Is It Hot In Here to You?

            Menopause is a trying time for a woman and everyone else around her. It’s a time when mood changes, hot flashes, irritability and emotions all clash together at once and create, “The Change of Life Monster.” 

I remember going shopping in a mall with my sister, Robbie and our mom one Saturday. It was cold outside and I had worn a sweater with a t-shirt underneath. While we were looking around I started to feel my internal oven come on and the heat rising from my feet and slowly creeping up over my entire body. In the meantime, Robbie found a pair of pants she liked and called me over to take a look at them. She held them up for me to see and I told her they looked fine as I tugged at my sweater. She stood in front of a mirror, trying to decide if she wanted to go into a fitting room and try on the pants. She turned from side to side admiring them from every angle. Mom was nearby giving her opinion as well. As I waited, sweat began to roll down the back of my neck and the temperature from my internal oven had now reached an all time high. 


 Once I finally came to my senses, I realized Mom and Robbie were clinging to each other, holding on for dear life. They were staring at me like I had turned into the “Incredible Hulk” right before their eyes. 

“I’m not getting these pants,” said Robbie, quickly hanging them back on the rack. 


I took the pants off the rack and threw them back at Robbie. Mom took a precautionary step backwards. Then I got about two inches from Robbie’s face and yelled. “TAKE THE PANTS AND GO TO THE FITTING ROOM AND TRY THEM ON! NOW! 

Robbie scurried off to the fitting room looking like the cowardly lion when the Wizard of Oz screamed at him to GO! Mom headed off behind her, not wanting to be left alone with me. 

 “AAAH!” I screamed, tugging at the neck of my sweater. “WHY IS IT SO HOT IN HERE?”

I ran to the nearest store exit, pulling off my sweater as I went. I stepped outside into the freezing weather wearing only a short-sleeve t-shirt and breathed a sigh of relief. As I stood there, holding my sweater in my hand, people were rushing to get in out of the cold. They all looked at me as if I was crazy; everyone, that is except one woman. As she was going inside she caught my eye and smiled as if to say, I feel your agony, honey.

When I finally cooled down and went back inside, Robbie and Mom were standing there waiting for me. Robbie was holding a bag with the pants, which she had quickly purchased while I was outside. They were both staring at me, trying to figure out whether or not it was safe to ride home with me. I felt badly about how I had acted earlier, so I apologized to them and asked if they wanted to go and get a cup of coffee. 

“NO!” They both shouted at the same time. I guess they didn’t want to take a chance on me drinking a hot beverage for fear the monster would reappear. 

It was very quiet in the car as we drove back home. A song came on the radio and tears started to form in my eyes. The next thing I knew I was blubbering. 

“Are you okay?” asked Robbie. 

“I’m all right,” I sobbed. “It’s just such a really sad song.” 

Robbie looked at me. “It’s ‘Monday, Monday’ by the ‘Mamas and the Papas’. You’ve heard it a thousand times. It’s not that sad.” 

I snapped my head to look at her, “WELL IT’S SAD TO ME, OKAY?” Nothing else was said after that. Robbie just left me to my blubbering for the rest of the drive home. 

After some coaxing from my family I decided o see my family doctor and discovered I wasn’t going crazy after all, but I was going through a change. The doctor asked me a lot of questions and it seemed like she had been following me around for the last six months, observing all of my symptoms. 

“Do you cry easily?” the doctor asked. 

“Yes,” I answered. 

“Do you suddenly get very hot for no apparent reason?” she asked. 

“Yes, I do,” I answered again. 

And so it went with me answering yes to every question. My body was changing and I wasn’t aware of what was going on inside of me. It was actually comforting to find out I wasn’t losing my mind. 

After much discussion the doctor and I agreed on a prescription to help ease the symptoms. My family calls them my “Happy Pills.” Although I still suffer with some symptoms, the hot flashes are not as severe and I’m sleeping a little better. I’ve managed to calm the “Change of Life Monster” to a more manageable “Sometimes Irritable and Occasionally Emotional with just a Splash of Hot Flashes Kind of Woman.” 

All through our lives we experience change. Our emotions are up and down. Some days we feel good and, on others, we feel bad. We experience happiness and, unfortunately, great sadness at various seasons of our lifetime. That is why it is so important to not be led by how we feel at any given moment or to make decisions based on our emotions. 

Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” It is better to be led by Christ than by our constantly shifting and changing feelings. 

Women especially need to heed this warning because we are more emotional than men and feelings play a big role in our lives. Remember who you are in Christ instead of giving into your emotions by making life-altering decisions without trusting God to give direction and guidance. Trust the God who “does not change like shifting shadows,” as it says in James 1:17. Make your emotions the caboose, not the engine. 

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Be Careful What You Ask For

I’ve always been somewhat of a computer nerd. I like keeping up with the latest and the greatest in automation. If it makes life easier, I like to use it. But my sister, Robbie, is not so keen. She uses a computer all day long and has an updated smart phone. However, if anything goes wrong with any of her devices she comes running to me for help. She doesn’t want details about what went wrong. She just wants me to fix it and let her get on with whatever she was doing. 


One day I decided we needed to update the internet and router in our home because we weren’t getting the speed we needed. So I called our internet provider and explained what I needed. The company informed me that I needed to purchase a new router and a more up to date modem box. As we talked, the person helping me asked if the internet account was in my name. As it happened, it was set up in Robbie’s name years ago. Usually I just say I’m Robbie to avoid any chance of putting Robbie on the phone with any sort of technical person. She just glazes over and, in the end, when you ask her questions about the conversation she just gives you a blank look. However, for some reason during this call I had already said my name. The person I was speaking with insisted on talking to the person whose name was on the account. 


I put the person on hold and told Robbie she had to speak to them herself. I explained that we needed an updated router and modem box. She only needed to let the person on the phone know I had her permission to update the equipment.


As I handed the phone to Robbie she had this unusual look of confidence. She even winked at me as if to say, “don’t worry, I’ve got this.” This worried me. Now don’t get me wrong. Robbie has plenty of knowledge and confidence in various areas. It’s just that computers is not one of them.


As Robbie began to talk I found myself holding my breath. 


“Hello, this is Robin Boyette,” Robbie began. “I’m calling because we need a box of Imodium. Then she turned and winked at me with a confident smile. My heart sank. 


“Not Imodium!” I shouted. “We need a new modem box!” 


Robbie’s face turned a very bright shade of red. 


“Um, could you just put your sister back on the phone, please?” the woman on the phone asked.


Robbie reluctantly handed the phone back to me. “She wants to talk to you,” she said.


I took the phone and asked if she could please let me put her on hold for just a moment. Then I just lost it. I fell on the floor laughing so hard I didn’t think I would ever recover. “Imodium!” I kept repeating in between bouts of hysterical, uncontrollable laughter. I was incapable of talking on the phone, yet I finally found a way to control myself to finish the conversation. The woman on the other end kept it together and was very professional and polite, although I could sense a big smile on her face as she spoke. 


When I finally got off the phone I thought how fortunate it is that we don’t always get what we ask for in life. I could just imagine a giant box of Imodium arriving at our front door or the cable company wondering why these two old ladies were calling them for a box of Imodium?


A lot of times we pray and ask God for things we believe we absolutely need or want, but later we are so happy he didn’t deliver exactly what we asked for or when we thought we needed it.


God knows us better than we know ourselves. Thank goodness he looks at our hearts and he sees our future. So he knows better than anyone what we need and what we don’t need. 


“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ, Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (NIV)


God has promised to meet all of our needs. So when we pray and repeatedly ask God for something that just doesn’t seem to come, we can take heart in knowing he would provide it if we really needed it. Perhaps it’s not the right time or you only think you need something. God sees the bigger picture and is able to supply all our needs. We just have to trust him to know what is best.  Take comfort in that knowledge. Otherwise, you could end up with a whole case of Imodium. 

(Excerpt from "Life is a Buffet But What is the Recipe? by Polly D. Boyette. All rights reserved. Copyright 2020 by Polly Boyette.)

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Start Your Day Off With Laughter!


We're pleased to announce Polly's new book, "Life is a Buffet But What is the Recipe?" This book is guaranteed to start your year off with a smile, or better yet, laughing out loud. 

Have you ever wondered if there is a secret recipe for life but you just haven't discovered it yet? "Life is a Buffet But What is the Recipe?" shares my recipe for living the best life God has planned for you, even when you are facing unexpected events or a difficult season.

This book is filled with humorous stories and simple biblical teachings to illustrate there is a recipe for life and it also reminds us to look for humor in everyday life.

"Life is a Buffet But What is the Recipe?" is currently available for purchase on Amazon in paperback and e-book formats. It will also be available for direct purchase through us beginning January 18th, 2021. If you're interested in purchasing copies, just contact us with your information and whether or not you'd like your book(s) signed by Polly Boyette.

Start your day off with laughter!