“Make a rule, and pray to God to help you to keep it: Never, if possible, to lie down at night without being able to say. I have made one human being, at least, a little wiser, a little happier, or a little better this day.” – Charles Kingsley

On his 55th birthday, Jeffrey Slavin, the mayor of Somerset, chose to honor the legends of Montgomery County. “High Tea” at The Woman’s Club of Chevy Chase, to which I received an engraved invitation, was a first-class event. The gathering was an “A-list” of Montgomery County, Maryland and D.C. political, educational and judicial power players. The legends honored were Valerie Ervin, County Council; Karen Britto, House of Delegates; Ruby Rubens, special assistant county executive and Odessa Shannon, Board of Education.

“Because I am a woman, I must make unusual efforts to succeed. If I fail, no one will say, she doesn’t have what it takes. They will say, women don’t have what it takes.”– Clare Boothe Luce

It was not lost on the guests that these four African American females were trailblazers in their field. Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and his wife Catherine were among the guests including Congresswoman Donna Edwards, Congresswoman Gwen Moore, Cambridge Mayor Victoria Jackson Stanley, Brentwood Mayor Patrella Robinson, Mt. Rainier Mayor Melinda Miles, DC Councilmember Mary Cheh, Councilmember Nancy Floreen, Milagros and Dennis McGuire of Bethesda, Irma Cuellar and Judge Sharon Burrell. The fashions worn by the “sophisticated ladies” created an elegant afternoon. The menu consisted of petite sandwiches, desserts and various teas.

Before leaving, we surprised Jeffrey by singing happy birthday and lauding him with flowers and platitudes, for his unselfishness in honoring his friends at such a marvelous event.

“The sky is falling” I survived Earthquake 2010. If you heard the rumble and felt the house shake, you were not alone. I had just drifted off to sleep at 5 a.m. after watching a movie that I had seen repeatedly. “Suddenly” I was jolted awake at 5:04 a.m., the house shaking, my dresser rocking and the lamp crystals tinkling. I was “bewildered.” I thought, “What’s going on?” Then it was over. Now I am sitting up in bed wondering did anything happen or was I dreaming. Images ran through my mind…did something hit the house? Now there is silence. I tightly pulled the covers closer and slowly laid down imagining the look on my face. You know that look you get when you know something is not right but don’t know what it is. You just can’t put your finger on it. Needless to say, “I was tossing and turning,” unable to go back to sleep. I was “all shook up” yet too startled to investigate. I think, “I’m going out of my head” finally I turned on the news and, to my delight, discovered I was not going out of my head. I had just survived an earthquake.

“I have learnt that I am me, that I can do the things that, as one might put it, me can do, but I cannot do the things that me would like to do.” – Agatha Christie??

“Extreme Home Makeover” meets extreme heat in Baltimore. Karenthia Barber, the Baltimore coordinator for volunteers for “Extreme Home Makeover” asked me to be a volunteer for the filming of the first day’s episode of my favorite show. We were to escort the bus as it announced the winners of the home makeover. When Karenthia, Marsha Robinson and I saw the bus pull up, escorted by Lt. Milton Corbett and the Baltimore motorcycle police with fire engines bringing up the rear, we forgot the extreme morning heat. When Ty Pennington and rapper Xzibit waved from the bus, we were pumped. We lined up in our blue shirts to walk behind the bus with the Excel Homes builders. When the director gave the signal to “move that bus,” we were to walk slowly behind the bus. The bus started moving and the volunteers stopped walking slowly and started running to keep up. Take II. Oh well! When the episode airs don’t look for me behind the bus, unless they show me bringing up the rear. By the time I reached the stage Ty was off the bus, the crowd was ecstatic and the girls from Boys Hope Girls Hope, the recipients of the 11,000- square-foot residential home, were screaming. The home located at 3744 Fleetwood Ave. is in need of volunteers, call 410-444-6503.

“God’s finger touched him and he slept.” Alfred Tennyson

Prayers and condolences to Christine on the death of your husband Benjamin Scott; Joann Bradley and Stanley Gordon on the death of your father Stanley Gordon; Esther Harried on the death of your husband Herman Harried Sr.; Michael Lee on the death of your brother Christopher Lee and to the family of Louis Tucker on his death.

We offer prayers and yellow roses to Iota Phi Theta Fraternity on the death of your founder Elias “Tink” Dorsey. Funeral arrangements handled by Chatman Harris.

It’s Celebration Time Come On!

Happy birthday to AFRO CEO and publisher John “Jake” Oliver, Dr. Marcia Coakley, state’s attorney Pat Jessamy, Si Salsa owner Sergei, Mercedes Griffin and my grandson Matthew Lee Packer.

“Summer summer summertime, time to sit back and unwind.” After the Frankie Beverly concert we walked to Talara in Little Italy to avoid the traffic jam leaving Pier 6. They offer a late night tapas menu and $5 drink specials. The Saturday late night happy hour starting at 10 p.m. had concert-goers ready to keep the party moving after “that golden time of day.”

“I’ll be there” Valerie & the Friday Night Bunch