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December 10, 2017


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Sandra Rose

What a beautiful picture you have painted in my mind. No snow here in Oxford, MS, but I feel the same as you do about it. Just the total peacefulness it brings. Thanks for the pause that refreshes.

Michael Russo

Dear Valerie,
I don't want this note on your blog; I was just curious... found an old photo of myself and another apartment dweller working on four cars at once, hoods up, a typical Saturday morning in the Fairmont parking lot and got to wondering, "Whatever happened to...?" and I was delighted to find not only are you still with Southern Living, you have a new book! I promptly ordered the book for my wife's birthday in two weeks - and it arrived today.
"Back in the day" we all knew this day was coming for you, when you'd have a way to tell your stories in extended form, and I expect there will be many more to come, now that that pipeline has been opened. Good for you!!!
I was going to send an email with the engaging subject line "To the Faymis Southeren Wommin Arther" but I don't do Facebook, and I can't find a way to email directly; besides, you'd doubtless figure it was someone from Texas.
If you get a moment, I'd love to hear how you are, tell me all about your husband, your work, your extended but all-in-one family I always envied; I'll fill you in on the past... I don't want to count how many years... I'm still in Waco; Diane still puts up with me, both children now grown and working in Dallas; and the Fairmont, alas, is one of them "greenspaces" now.
"And if you act soon"... I have a mint-condition Fairmont postcard to send you!
As you can, it'd be great to catch up again.
Blessings and great favor to you -
(PS: If my note does automatically appear on the blog, please remove it; I don't want this to clutter the flow. Thanks.)

Valerie Luesse

Hey, Mike Russo!
I have a copy of a pic made the day you cranked the Cougar:) Your message appears only in Comments, so no problem. Dave and I are fine. It has been a journey! Left Southern Living, came back to Southern Living, did a book for them, where I met my agent, and my first book just came out. You can email me at valerieluesse@gmail.com and we'll visit. Tell Diane I said hi!


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