Sassy & Southern

Character Interview and Yummy Cheese Grits Recipe to Celebrate DWAM Anniversary

Posted in General on March 26th, 2015 by Casey Crow

March is the anniversary of DANCE WITH A MILLIONAIRE. To celebrate, here’s a character interview and a yummy grits recipe because what’s more Southern than a girl from the deep South who can cook cheese grits?

Southern belle Campbell Layne is the rising star of the Manhattan Ballet Theatre, providing she lands an upcoming principal role. The stage heats up, however, when Rod Carrington steps in and teaches her more than she ever expected! Determined as she is to stay focused on the audition that will push her into stardom, dazzling attorney Rod Carrington still proves to be a major distraction especially when he ends up teaching the college class she’s taking in her spare time. Campbell humiliates herself on their first date, but that doesn’t stop Rod from whisking her off to Italy and turning her into quite the vixen. Too bad he also had to use his powerful influence to secure the lead for her. Now she’ll never know if her talent was real or “bought” by the man she thought was the love of her life.

Hi Campbell, can you tell our readers a little about DANCE WITH A MILLIONAIRE?
Sure, but first let me say how glad I am to be here! DWAM is about this Southern belle and rising star of the Manhattan Ballet Theatre, providing she lands the upcoming principal role. Um, yeah, that’s me. I’m totally stressing about an audition that could change my life. All I want to do is stay focused on my career, and I’ll be dog-gone, that’s when Rod Carrington steps into the picture. OMG. The man is freakin’ gorgeous and a total ego-maniac. He simply will not go away, though, as proven when he volunteers to substitute this law school class I’m taking in my spare time. (I’m on the nerdy side, and this is how I like to spend my time – don’t judge). Anyway, against my better judgment, we go to dinner. Basically, I drink too much, embarrass the fool out of myself, and assume that’s the end of it. Oh no. Rod then whisks me off to his Italian villa and helps me become quite the vixen. (No complaining here.) I’m completely smitten until I find out he used his powerful influence to secure the lead role for me. Now I’ll never know if my talent was real or “bought” by the man I thought was the love of her life.

How did you get into ballet?
The story my folks tell is that when I was about two, we were all at my uncle’s horse pasture. (I’m from this tiny town in rural South Alabama.) When Mama wasn’t looking, I climbed up onto the fence and was standing on one of the rails. She knew then that with all that balance I’d either be a ballet dancer or a tight-rope walker. The next week, she enrolled me in dance class.

What’s your favorite part of dance?
Definitely, my most favorite part is getting lost in the music. It transports me into a world all my own, like I’m in this bubble where I feel nothing but the rhythm of the orchestra. Tchaikovsky is my favorite composer and takes me to that sphere like no other. Yes, there are others, composers who reveled in the uniqueness of their music or intricacies of the composition, but no one does it for me like the great Russian magician. His sound is immediately recognizable, too. The peppy theme of The Nutcracker would put the grumpiest of Scrooges in the Christmas spirit. Sleeping Beauty’s “Waltz of the Flowers” causes me to sway in serenity while Swan Lake’s “Dying Swan” exhausts me with grief.

Tell us about your trip to Italy.
Rod, bless his heart, whisks me off on his private jet to the resort town of Bellagio, Italy, on Lake Como. The Swiss Alp Mountains, the lake, all the yellow and cream stucco buildings with orange terracotta tile roofs, and the cobblestone paths were incredible to see. Rod’s home turns out to be a mansion he’s renovating. I love it because it is warm and welcoming and “him.” Bellagio is known for upscale boutiques, antiques, and art galleries. As great as the shopping was, I have to admit, the best part was seeing how the relaxation Italy offered created this new side of Rod I’d yet to see.

Rod wine and dines at some pretty fantasy restaurants then you turn the tables and cook him a home-cooked meal. Tell us about that.
Our first date is at Jean Georges in New York City. I have sea bass and Rod has beef Wellington. Delish! When we are Italy, I think I gain ten pounds from the manicotti, tiramisu, and gelato. Mama taught me how to cook so I finally show off my culinary skills with fried chicken, cornbread, collard greens, grits, mash potatoes, and a carrot casserole. Plus, I bake an apple pie. Rod, I’m proud to say, loved it. In fact, here is my jalapeno grits recipe (as if the book isn’t hot enough):
Jalapeno Cheese Grits

2 cups quick-cooking grits
2 1/2 cups grated extra-sharp Cheddar
1 stick unsalted butter
1 tablespoon hot sauce (recommended: Tabasco)
3 large eggs, well beaten
2 jalapenos, finely diced
1/4 cup canned chopped green chiles
Garlic salt
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Cook the grits according to the directions on the back of the package. Remove from the heat and add next 6 ingredients (Cheddar through chilies). Stir well and season with garlic salt, to taste. Pour into a buttered 9-inch baking dish and bake for 1 hour. Let cool slightly before slicing and serving.

Southern Smiles,
Casey Crow
Twitter @caseyecrow and Facebook Casey Crow

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Dance with a Millionaire Anniversary

Posted in General on March 10th, 2015 by Casey Crow

DANCE WITH A MILLIONAIRE is celebrating its anniversary! Here’s an excerpt!

Southern belle Campbell Layne is the rising star of the Manhattan Ballet Theatre, providing she lands an upcoming principal role. The stage heats up, however, when Rod Carrington steps in and teaches her more than she ever expected!

Determined as she is to stay focused on the audition that will push her into stardom, dazzling attorney Rod Carrington still proves to be a major distraction especially when he ends up teaching the college class she’s taking in her spare time. Campbell humiliates herself on their first date, but that doesn’t stop Rod from whisking her off to Italy and turning her into quite the vixen. Too bad he also had to use his powerful influence to secure the lead for her. Now she’ll never know if her talent was real or “bought” by the man she thought was the love of her life.

“It leaps right off the pages and into your heart. I will remember and reread. I look forward to Ms. Crow’s storytelling in the future. I just love the sassy, Southern girl meets cool rich guy. This book is well worth the read.” My Erotic Reviews

Now for a mainstream excerpt:

“Thank you for attending the performance and for your generous donation to MBT.” His dark eyebrows shot up a notch, highlighting a definite mischievous twinkle in his eyes. Why did they have to be the exact shade of turquoise as the Caribbean Ocean at sunset? Stunning.

“That’s well-rehearsed, Miss Layne. Tell me, though, do you turn on the Southern belle charm for all your fans or only the male ones?”

Her mouth fell open, but thank goodness she had the presence of mind to snap it shut. “How dare you? First of all, I’m from Alabama which makes the accent genuine, and secondly, that’s…that’s the rudest, most ungentlemanly thing to say.”

“I never said I was a gentleman and readily admit to be undeserving of your sweet façade. I’d much prefer the real you.”

She propped her hands on her hips. “And precisely what, may I ask, do you assume to be the real me, seeing as our acquaintance has a life span of what? Thirty seconds?”

Rod glanced at an expensive-looking gold watch. “Forty-five.” He stepped closer.

She did not see that coming and stumbled back only to become trapped between the wall and his body. The hard, cold stone competed against his warm, harder presence. Damn it, the latter won out.
She ground her traitorous fingertips into her palms in an effort to prevent them from brushing away the stray curl that fell across his forehead.

The hem of his jacket brushed her hip as he moved in to splay his hand over her waist. The pressure built as he gathered her an inch closer. She caught a faint whiff of his cologne. The clean, fresh scent permeated the air and reminded her of the Southern pines back home, but this was not the time to reminisce.

“In fact, I’d like to get to know every inch of you.” Another sharp tug had her chest pressed against his rock solid form.

Her blood boiled in a delicious rhythm. Obviously, the vibrator thing was getting old if this jerk was turning her on. She made a mental note to ask her best friend, Heidi, to set her up on a date. Any man would do—as long as it was not Rod.

She flexed her fingers and pushed against his shoulders. “Let go of me, you arrogant pig.” A lion, cougar, leopard—anything powerful—seemed a more apt description though.

Rod chuckled and loosened his hold. A fraction. Enough to insert his finger between them. It followed the line of fabric at her shoulder slowly, very slowly, across her chest. As he glided over her cleavage, he said, “But, my dear, you’re mistaken. It’s confidence I possess.”

“More like cockiness.” Even as she said it, Bella couldn’t take her gaze off his finger or steer her attention from the intense hunger sweeping through her. She instinctively arched her back, lifting her breasts to silently beg for more.

“Either way, but I always get what I want, and in case you need me to spell it out”—he slid his finger up her throat to tilt her chin, forcing her to look at him—“I. Want. You.”


So obviously Rod jumps right on in there with Campbell. Is that how you like your man, or do you the slow and steady kind? I’d love to hear your stories.

DANCE WITH A MILLIONAIRE BUY NOW from Amazon or from Siren Publishing
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Because mascara is a necessity of life

Posted in General on February 26th, 2015 by Casey Crow



Today I’m jumping from author mode to another one of my jobs. That of a pageant coach for over 20 years. It’s pageant season with high school pageants, students gearing up for Distinguished Young Woman, Miss America and Miss Teen USA so I’m fairly inundated right now.

One of the most common questions I get asked is “How do I tape my boobs?” Seriously. But I’ll save that topic for another day. Another hot topic is “What’s the best mascara?”

My answer…Loreal Extend in the maroon and white tube. It’s the kind that adds tubes to the end of your lashes after using a white primer. You still have to use a volumnizing mascara over it because it’s not enough on it’s on. Sadly, I haven’t found a volumnizing mascara I love. I can tell you that Loreal Butterfly Effect in the silver tube and the Loreal False Fiber lashes in the black and gold tube are not worth the money. I’m thinking of trying Cover Girl next. Maybe the one Katy Perry advertises because she’s a celebrity, and you know how important it is to believe anything a celebrity says. LOL

I’ve used the 3D Fiber that everyone is raving about. Mom loves it. I hate it. Way too much work and clumpy thick. My lashes look better with the cheap drug store stuff versus spending $30. Dido on Lancôme. (I can say that because I worked at Lancome for a while.) Plus Loreal owns Lancôme so it’s basically the same formula minus the added fragrances.

Lastly I also use Latisse a couple times a week to maintain my long lashes.Its a miracle drug. A friends gets lash extensions so she doesn’t have to use mascara at all, but my research revealed it is harmful to your real lashes.

So there you have it. Beauty tip of the day. Do you have a favorite mascara?

Southern Smiles,
Casey Crow

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Laissez les bons temps rouler – Let the Good Times Roll

Posted in General on February 10th, 2015 by Casey Crow

It’s Mardi Gras in Mobile! Yeah, New Orleans throws a big ta-do, but since we Alabamians like to say Mobile had the first Mardi Gras, I’ll be talking about how we do it up. Purple, gold and green colors are everywhere, even on the gigantic wreath on my own front door. Parades with masked revelers throwing moonpies, beads, and huge stuffed animals are held nearly every night for about three weeks. Balls with ladies in beautiful long dresses and guys in tails wearing so many beads they look like Mr. T.

On Fat Tuesday, the Knights of Revelry ladies wear spring suits and fancy hats like you see at the Kentucky Derby. Most have on tennis shoes with those designer suits. Half the children running around wear French hand-sewn dresses and john-johns. The other half are raggamuffins with Walmart sacks filled with throws. The most serious parade goers have folding chairs, ice chests, and giant umbrellas they flip upside down to catch goodies. Plus, the bigger the umbrella, the easier for the drunk dude on a float to make the target. Folks even have those trash picker upper things to pull beads from the branches of crape mertles and enormous live oaks lining the streets. Campers fill the grassy area by the civic center for weeks on end because even if you live in Mobile, you don’t go home – especially when your attending 5 to 8 balls.
I’ve been in the parades and watched them. The first parade I watch when I was 15. I got sprayed with mace when some doofus near me got into a fight with his buddy. Luckily, I’d ridden in the Joe Cain Children’s Floral Parade earlier that day. In the middle of it, this super cute guy ran up to my float and gave ME a rose. That’s my favorite Mardi Gras memory.

Last night, I experienced MG as an adult, attending the Order of Venus ball with several girlfriends because who needs a better reason to wear a ballgown than a Girls Night Out?

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To start a ball, the calvary makes a processional followed by the court and finally the queen (or king if it’s a men’s organization). The members of the organization are wearing masks and costumes that they had on the float prior to the parade. The whole ordeal of introductions takes an hour while guests watch. Then the band comes in and everyone dances until midnight – unless you’re a badass and can party til 2:00.

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The band last night was “The Molly Ringwalds” from Europe. They plays all 1980′s cover songs. It was AWESOME!!! They were dressed like PeeWee Herman, Twisted Sister, and other icons from the 80′s. The but dress behind is one of costumes a member had. Most had their faces painted with a mask and lots of bling and rhinestones.

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The attire is “costume de rigour” meaning girls wear long dress, but some organizations like this one lets you get away with skimpy dresses (but not two pieces so I had a panel added to center of my dress). Guys are required to wear tails and a WHITE tie. This is a dear friend I ran into (along with his boyfriend – I know, right? All the cuties bat for the other team!). BTW – I came out of my heels but had brought flats for dances. Some had flipflop and a few went barefooted – gross bc there are drinks spilled everywhere. 


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Each organization member is responsible for selling tickets to her table. She also has to decorate it. Most of the money for membership dues and tickets pays for the ball and parade, but some is often donated to a charity. I’m not a member of an organization and honestly have no desire to be. Like most Mobilians, I go snow skiing and get away from all the tourists during Mardi Gras, but it sure was fun to have a little hometown rivalry last night even as the sober designated driver!

So there’s your first hand account of Mardi Gras. Here’s the official version:

Mardi Gras is celebrated in Mobile, New Orleans and other Gulf Coast cities. This festive event was started in Mobile and according to some accounts, dates back to 1703. The celebration was originally called Boef Gras (Fat Beef).

The well-known Mardi Gras in Mobile was begun by Michael Krafft. On New Years’s Eve, 1830, Krafft and his friends were reluctant to end a dinner party at the customary time. They raided a nearby hardware store, took up rakes, hoes and cowbells and proceeded to wake the town. They soon formed the Cowbellion de Rakin Society, the first of Mobile’s many modern mystic organizations. The Cowbellions presented their first parade, complete with floats and theme, in 1840.

The Civil War brought revelry in Mobile to an abrupt halt. Joseph Stillwell Cain, on Fat Tuesday of 1866, donned full Chickasaw Indian regalia, dubbed himself Chief Slacabamorinico. Cain and six friends set out to raise the morale of citizens in the defeated city. Dubbing themselves the “Tea Drinkers”, and fired up by drink much stronger than tea, they took to the streets in a decorated coal wagon pulled by a mule. Cain was a founder in the Order of Myths, the organization which today holds the final Carnival Season parade Mardi Gras night. He also helped organize many more parading societies. Cain’s role in reviving Mardi Gras is observed each year on the Sunday before Mardi Gras Day, “Joe Cain Day.” On “Joe Cain Day” thousands of Mobilians in costume and on individually designed floats parade through the streets of downtown Mobile.

The date of Mardi Gras is determined by the date of Easter. Mardi Gras Day, or “Fat Tuesday,” is the Tuesday before the Ash Wednesday which begins the 40 days Lenten season. Nighttime parades and other public festivities begin about 10 days before Mardi Gras Day. Carnival Season balls, receptions and other private functions begin in the fall and continue through Mardi Gras Day.

Laissez les bons temps rouler,

Casey Crow


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Word of the Year

Posted in General on January 28th, 2015 by Casey Crow


A couple of years ago, I noticed in Debbie Macomber’s newsletter that at the beginning of each year, she selects a word to focus on for that year. In 2013, she used “Submit”. 2014 brought on “Light” and this year it’s “Bouquet.” See her You Tube video to learn more about “Bouquet” and how “Light” played out. As someone of Debbie’s great influence tends to do, she inspired me to come up with my own words.

“Strong” was my word for 2013, as in finding inner strength since that was a very difficult time period in my life right after a messy divorce. I focused on picking myself up, starting over, and creating a new life for myself no matter what obstacles I faced, and there were plenty!

When 2014 rolled around, I was on my way to being back on my feet so I centered on the word “Empower”. I really loved rocking that word! I worked hard to get my self-confidence back and knowing I could take care of myself. There’s a lot of “Empower”-ment once that happens even when, as you invariably will, run into bumps and bruises along the way.

I figure I’ve spent the past two and half years focusing on getting myself together. Now it’s time to turn my attention to less self-centered matters. “Forgive” is my word for 2015. I’m going to be working on forgiving those who have hurt me and especially trying to forgive myself for every bad I have ever done. Somehow, I think “Forgive” just might be the hardest word of all to see to fruition! We can’t control other people, but we can adjust our expectations. There’s this great saying by John Maxwell: “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of how you react to it.” Letting go of any bitterness and/or regret you may have will ultimately make you a happier, more positive person who can accomplish anything!

Got any ideas for your 2015 Word of the Year?

Southern Smiles,

Casey Crow

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Moon Pie over Mobile to kick off 2015

Posted in General on January 13th, 2015 by Casey Crow

As many of you know, I still blog regularly with Naughty Author Chicks, but as 2015 rolls in, I plan to get back to blogging here at Casey Crow, too. So here goes….

It’s not Times Square on New Year’s, but my town of Mobile, Alabama drops a Moon Pie on December 31st and has done so since 2008. It’s  a 12-foot-tall lighted mechanical banana colored Moon Pie. We made national news again and I saw several Facebook post about what a Moon Pie has to do with Mardi Gras. Well, we are home to the ORIGINAL Mardi Gras (contrary what those folks over in New Orleans think — big rivalry, mind you).

Moon Pies have been made at the Chattanooga Bakery since 1917. Earl Mitchell Junior said his father came up with the idea for Moon Pies when he asked a Kentucky coal miner what kind of snack he would like to eat, and the miner requested something with graham cracker and marshmallow which had been dipped in chocolate. When Mitchell’s father asked how big it should be, the miner looked up in the night sky and framed the full moon with his hands.

Throwing Moon Pies originally began in Mobile, where they are still the catch of choice for the parades there. But why a Moon Pie? A lot of people that aren’t that familiar with the Mobile style should know that before 1974, food has always been involved as a throw ever since 1949, when Crackerjacks, (peanuts and caramel nuggets) were thrown by a lot of krewes as a treat for the revelers. Crackerjacks, were brought about because they were a cheap alternative to beads.

However, people kept getting beamed with the end of those rectangular boxes. Mobile city officials banned the candied popcorn about 1972. A lot treats and articles preceded the Moon Pie icon as the krewes searched for a replacement.

The first to throw of Moon Pies were the krewe of “Maids of Mirth” in 1974. Soon other krewes followed. They first came in chocolate dipped graham cracker cookies with a marshmallow center. Now, the famed cookies come in also banana, coconut, orange and vanilla. Peanut butter is pretty popular down here, too, and I hear there’s strawberry and apple.

Hope you enjoyed your Southern history lesson. (Thanks to Wikipedia and “The History of the Mardi Gras Moon Pie” by Aaron Lane, Planet Radio, copyright March 7, 2011 for the help).

Happy 2015!

Southern Smiles,

Casey Crow




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I Blog with the Naughty Author Chicks

Posted in General on October 9th, 2014 by Casey Crow

Please click the NAC icon at the right to see my latest blog post. ~ Southern Smiles, Casey

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# Literacy Matters

Posted in General on September 8th, 2014 by Casey Crow

Hey y’all! 

My literacy agency is hosting an auction with over 80 items to raise money for Literacy Council Gulf Coast. We’re giving away books, real Amish quilts, book trailers, critiques, gift baskets and more! Check it out The Seymour Agency ‘s blog. Let’s do all we can to support literacy!

Here’s a video of me being interview to support the event.

Read to be Cinderella

Southern Smiles, 

Casey Crow


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What it means to be a proper Southern Lady

Posted in General on February 15th, 2014 by Casey Crow


I ran across this article Black Belt Living, a small-press magazine that focuses on life in the Black Belt which is a stretch of land going through Central Alabama that’s known for having rich, black soil. AKA “where the cotton grows”.

The article was too cute not to share. BTW – it’s a lot easier to read if you channel your inner Scarlett O’Hara voice.

~ Casey Crow

Hello Dahlings…As you are probableh keenly awayah I’m sitting right now on my back patio havin’ my usual Sataday aftanoon Mint Julep. Rory, my dear, devoted husband, is at the country club playin’ that awful game we call golf–I declare I don’t what gets into that man. Hittin’ a little dimpled ball around and chasin’ after it, sweatin’ profusalayh and smellin’ like an old dirtah dawg. Doesn’t make a lick of sense.

I’d ratha be right where I am, out in the sun by the swimmin’ pool gettin’ a little culuh and readin’ Faulknah. Sista Mary Sayrah is comin’ ova lata for tea, if I’m not too tipsy. Did I say that? Fuhgive me…that’s not very ladylike of me. I guess it runs in the familah. You probableh know my distant cousin, Tallulah Bankhead, the actah from up at Jaspah? Let me tell you somethin’ dahlings, she was a hot mess, and I do mean a hot one! Well, I’ve tried to live my life a little bit different than my lovely cousin, dahlings. I only drink fowah cocktails a day, and I’m down to a pinch-a-snuff a week.

Now, where was I? Oh yes, what it means to be a Southun’ lady. I’ve decided ten rules that ladies of Dixie should always adheah to. Would you like to heah them? Of course you would dahling.

Numba wowun. Always, always, always turn youh fanny away from teh crowd when youh excusing yourself in a movie theatuh. You nevah want to show your hindend to innocent bystandahs.

Numba two. Nevah talk about your husand at teh beauty pahlah. Those old hens are doin’ nothin’ but looking to stir up trouble.

Numba three. Keep two feet on the flowah when you’re on the sofa. That means if you’re with a gentleman, honey or watching the home shoppin’ network.

Numba fowah. Nevah date a man that won’t open the cah dowah for you dahling. That means a man isn’t raised right. If Rory doesn’t open my dowah, well, I just stand there until he does. One time, he got all the way home befowah he realized I wasn’t in the cah.

Numba five. Nevah chew bubble gum in church. I always notice who’s a-chewin, honey during the pastoral prayah.

Numba six. Wear a girdle.

Numba seven. Always put tannin’ lotion on youwah skin, honey. You don’t wanna look like a pug when ya fowaty.

Number eight. Don’t work if you don’t have to. Life’s too short, dahling, to be piddlin’ around in some office somewheyah.

Number nine. Alway weah tennis skirts that come down past your knees, honey. The ladies these days, merciful heavens, the skirts they weyah would make a sailah blush.

And finally, dahlings, numba ten. Nevah, undah any circumstances, put an earring anywheah on ya face, dahling. Some of these girls look like theah face ran into a tackle box. Lawd.

I’m going to have one moah toddy and then I’ve got to get my beauty rest befowah high tea then dinnah.

That’s all fuh now dahlings. Ta-ta!


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Cute Jokes (and maybe a tad naughty)…

Posted in General on January 15th, 2014 by Casey Crow

Happy New Year everyone! What better way to start it off than with a chuckle or two. Thought I’d share some cute jokes. Okay, some are a tad naughty. (hehe)

I’m thinking, though, a male came up with the first one, but the females take revenge with the last one!

Southern Smiles,

Casey Crow



She was standing in the kitchen preparing to

boil eggs for breakfast, wearing only

the ‘T’ shirt that she normally slept in.

As I walked in almost awake, she turned and said softly,

‘You’ve got to make love to me this very moment.’

My eyes lit up and I thought, ‘I am either

still dreaming or this is going to be my lucky day.’

Not wanting to lose the moment, I embraced

her and then gave it my all; right there on the kitchen table.

Afterwards she said, ‘Thanks,’ and returned to the stove,

her ‘T’ shirt still around her neck.

A little puzzled, I asked, ‘What was that all about?’

She explained, ‘The egg timer’s broken.


Q: Why are men better then women in reading maps?

A: Because only a man can look at 2.5 centimeters and imagine it to be a mile.


The Man Of The House…SMILE

A husband had just finished reading a new book entitled, ‘You Can Be THE Man of Your House.
Finding new courage that he never knew he had, he stormed into the kitchen and announced to his wife, “From now on, you
need to know that I am the man of this house, and my word is the ‘Law.’ You will prepare me a gourmet meal tonight, bring it to me, and when I am done eating my meal, you will clear the dishes and serve me a scrumptious dessert.
After dinner, you are going to go upstairs with me and we will make love the way I want! Afterwards, you are going to draw
me a bath so I can relax. You will put on soothing music, wash my back, towel me dry, and bring me my robe.
You will massage my feet and hands to relieve any last bit of tension in me, so that I can sleep like a baby. Then, tomorrow,
guess who’s going to dress me and comb my hair?
The wife replied, “The funeral director would be my first guess, unless I have your ass cremated.”


And my personal favorite: