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Mud&Magnolias October. November September 2018 2013

Tailgating + Fall Fashion Coach & Player Q&A ● Baton Rouge ● The Cookie Canvas ● Custom Cowbells mudandmag.com

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499 Gloster Creek Village, Ste G1 | Tupelo, MS 38801 | www.oinms.com 2

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Contents

Mud&Magnolias

pg. 45

pg. 55

pg. 64

pg. 76

Features Cowbells & Calligraphy • pg. 45

Editor’s Letter pg. 8 Tailgate Recipes pg. 11 It's that time of year again. These recipes are perfect for hanging out at your tailgate or watching the game at home. Coach & Player Q&As pg. 25 Get to know your Mississippi State and Ole Miss football players and new head football coaches.

Mississippi State fans love their cowbells. Vicki Burnett loves turning them into custom works of art.

The Cookie Canvas • pg. 55

Oxford nurse-turned-cookie-guru Sarah Hutto bakes 150 of her colorful, custom cookies each week for birthdays, weddings and special events.

Fall Fashion Catalog • pg. 64

Deep fall colors meet styles that transition from the hot Southern summer to crisp fall days.

Taylor Inn • pg. 76

A cozy getaway, Taylor Inn is far enough to escape for a weekend, but not too far from the excitement of gameday in Oxford.

Baton Rouge pg. 51 Both MSU and Ole Miss will travel to Death Valley this fall to take on the LSU Tigers. Here's how to spend a weekend in Baton Rouge. Service Station Food pg. 61 It turns out some of the best food can be found at your local service station. Our guide to North Mississippi's best. Da Bombs pg. 82 Morgan Tibbens hasn't let Down syndrome stop her from starting a business and chasing her dreams.

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Editor’s Letter

I feel old just saying this, but I can't believe it's already September. Summer ushered in a sense of rest and relaxation, but it is drying up as fall makes an entrance. Now it's go time for many of us as we have a schedule full of high school and college football games, fall weddings and the showers associated with them and extracurricular activities on top of work obligations. In many ways, I'm ready to hop on the roller coaster and this issue certainly helped me get in the spirit. We cover it all from the hottest items to have in your closet (pg.64) to tasty treats sure to make you the most popular at the tailgate or party (pg.11) to the coaches and football players you'll be watching on Saturdays (pg.25). If you've read my letters in previous tailgating issues, you know I'm an Ole Miss grad who is more likely to be in the Grove than the Junction. And I've never rung a cowbell. Which is why it nearly pains me to endorse the distribution of a (really beautiful) cowbell by Vicki Burnett (pg.45). I will say, if I were to ring a cowbell, I'd want it to be one of hers. Despite my allegiance to the Rebels, I am really thrilled to announce a cowbell giveaway happening over on our social media channels (Instagram and Facebook). Go check it out and best of luck. Afterall, if you are going to cheer for my rival, you should look good doing it!

If you have any thoughts about this issue, please email me at editor@mudandmag.com.

On the cover: Special thanks to Relics Antiques for lending us tailgating supplies as well as Jake Criss the golden retriever for being the most well-behaved model. Photo by Lauren Wood.

Over at mudandmag.com: Shop our style: Our online store features T-shirts, coffee mugs, digital prints and dish towels with art and designs by local Mississippi artists. Check out our videos on custom cowbells and sugar cookies on page 45 and 55, respectively. >> Extended fall fashion catalog (pg. 64) online. facebook.com/mudandmagnolias

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1242 S Green St. Tupelo, MS 38804 662.842.2611

Editor-in-Chief Ellie Turner

Associate Editors Shannon Johnson Missha Rogers Leslie Criss Lauren Wood Emma Kent

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Contributing Editors Cristina Carreon W. Derek Russell Sydni Dunn

Contributing Photographers Adam Robison Thomas Wells Jordan Hefler

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Mud & Magnolias reserves the right to deny any submission we deem inappropriate or simpy not in line with our overall editorial vision.

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Football Fare RECIPES

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Football whoopie pies, recipe on page 20

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the Perfect Gift

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Maroon & Wine Ingredients: 24 ounces fruity or sweet red wine 12 ounces citrus vodka 24 ounces pomegranate juice 18 to 24 ounces ginger beer, to taste fresh mixed berries and skewers, for garnish ice Directions: In a large pitcher or punch bowl, combine the red wine, citrus vodka and pomegranate juice. Stir until well combined and chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve. When ready to serve the cocktail, fill pitcher or punch bowl with regular ice and add the chilled cocktail mixture. Quickly top with the ginger beer, to taste, and give the mixture a stir. Serve in individual cocktail glasses over ice and garnish with mixed berry skewers.

Cold Toddy Ingredients: 8 ounces ginger beer 1 ounce whiskey 1 teaspoon honey or more to taste 1 lemon wedge 1 orange wedge cinnamon stick to garnish Directions: Add some ice to a copper mug or glass. Pour in the ginger beer, whiskey and honey. Stir to combine. Squeeze the lemon and orange into the drink. Garnish with cinnamon stick and another orange or lemon wedge/slice, if desired.

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Recipes FOOTBALL WHOOPIE PIES Ingredients: 6 tablespoons (3 ounces) shortening 1 cup sugar 1 large egg 1 cup milk 5 tablespoons cocoa 2 1/4 cups flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 2 teaspoons vanilla 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature 1 pound (4 cups) confectioners sugar 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together shortening and sugar. Add egg and vanilla, beating well until blended. In a bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Slowly beat in the flour mixture, alternating with milk, until blended. Using a cookie scoop, drop onto greased baking sheets. Then use a butter knife to gently create points on either side of the circle, creating the shape of a football. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until firm. Cool on racks. With an electric mixer on medium high speed, beat butter and cream cheese until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Add sugar 1 cup at a time, and then vanilla, mixing until smooth and combined, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Fill a piping bag with your cream cheese frosting. Flip one of your chocolate whoopie pies over so the bottom is facing up. Pipe frosting from edges inward. Gently press the bottom side of another whoopie pie on top, creating a sandwich. Use the remaining cream cheese frosting to pipe football laces onto the top of each whoopie pie. PIZZA PULL-APART BREAD Ingredients: 2 round or oval loaves of bread

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(something with a firm outer crust) 2-3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese 1/2 cup pepperoni slices, cut in half 1/2 cup butter 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning 2 cups marinara/pizza sauce

immediately or transfer to a slow cooker with a "warm" setting to keep dip warm and melted.

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with foil (leave enough extra foil on the sides to wrap the bread loaves) and spray with cooking spray. Use a long bread knife to slice the bread. Make long slices about 1.5 inches apart across the bread, and then in the opposite direction so that you get a checkerboard effect (be careful not to slice all the way through the bread, so you do not cut through the bottom crust). Gently stuff the mozzarella into all of the spaces in the bread. Stuff pepperoni slices into the spaces next. Melt butter in a small bowl and whisk in Italian seasoning. Drizzle or brush seasoned butter over the whole bread. Place loaves onto prepared baking sheet and wrap the loaves with the extra foil. Bake 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted and bread starts to brown lightly. Serve pull-apart bread with warmed pizza/marinara sauce for dipping.

Ingredients: Frozen mini waffles, toasted Chicken tenders or nuggets, cooked Maple syrup Toothpicks

EASY QUESO DIP Ingredients: 1 pound pepper jack cheese 8 ounces full-fat cream cheese 1/2 cup full-fat sour cream 1 10-ounce can original Rotel tomatoes with green chilies, drained 3/4 cup whole milk (if needed) 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon chili powder Directions: In a medium pot over low heat combine the cheese, cream cheese, sour cream and Rotel. Let the mixture heat until the cheeses melt and a smooth cream forms, stirring often. This should take 15-20 minutes. Add the spices. Add milk, if needed for desired consistency. Once melted, serve

MINI CHICKEN & WAFFLE SLIDERS

Directions: If using chicken fingers, slice chicken fingers into 3-4 pieces each. Break your toasted mini waffles apart. Sandwich one piece of chicken between two mini waffles. Secure with a toothpick. Drizzle with maple syrup or serve syrup on the side. MINI TURKEY BAGEL SANDWICHES Ingredients: 6 plain mini bagels, split 6 tablespoons yellow mustard 6 slices salami 6 slices deli turkey 6 slices cheddar cheese 1 avocado, sliced 6 slices tomato Directions: Split mini bagels and line bagel bottoms on a serving dish or tray. Spread mustard evenly on each bagel bottom. Top with salami, turkey, cheese, one slice of avocado and one slice of tomato. Finish with bagel top. Wrap in parchment paper and serve. M


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Meet the Coach Q&A

Matt Luke Ole Miss photos by Ole Miss Athletics

Number of seasons as head coach: first season Most recent coaching position: Interim head coach, co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at Ole Miss What are you most looking forward to this season? I’m looking forward to building on the culture that we have started, building that team chemistry and enjoying being around our players. What is your favorite spot on campus? The Grove What is your earliest memory of football? My dad’s football helmet being on our family mantle. Who is your biggest fan? My wife. What is the last book you read or movie you watched? The last book I read was "Extreme Ownership" by Jocko Willink.

Where is the best place to grab a bite to eat in Oxford? My mom’s house. What is the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome? Last season. How do you handle pregame jitters? I focus on the task at hand. What is the best part of being a coach? The relationships. If you could tell Ole Miss fans one thing, what would it be? I will do anything in my power to put a product on the field they can be proud of. What is something you like to do when you are not on the sidelines? Spend time with my family. mudandmag.com

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Meet the Coach Q&A

Mississippi State photos by MSU Athletic Communications

Joe Moorhead Number of seasons as head coach: first season Most recent coaching position: Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Penn State University What are you most looking forward to this season? Finally taking the field with our team in Davis Wade Stadium. What is your favorite spot on campus? Davis Wade Stadium. What’s your earliest memory of football? Watching my older brother’s football practice at St. Bart’s Elementary. Who is your biggest fan? My family. What is the last book you read or movie you watched? Book – “When Pride Still Mattered, A Life of Vince Lombardi.” Movie – Guardians of the Galaxy 2.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? My speed when I was an athlete. How do you handle pregame jitters? By preparing, watching film. What is the best part about being a coach? The opportunity to affect young people’s lives and help them reach their potential. If you could tell Mississippi State fans one thing, what would it be? Ring responsibly. What is something you like to do when you are not on the sidelines? Hanging out with my family and watching TV, particularly the History Channel.

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Meet the Players Q&A

DaMarkus Lodge Number: 5 Position: Wide receiver Class: Senior Hometown: Cedar Hill, Texas What’s your pregame song? "Guwup" by Young Thug. What’s your favorite gameday tradition? I eat a lot of candy before the game. What are you currently watching on Netflix? I really don’t watch a lot of TV, but when I do, I usually watch cartoons; "SpongeBob," "Family Guy." Stuff like that. What’s your earliest memory of football? I remember I got hit in pee-wee football and didn’t want to play anymore. I walked off the field and my mom grabbed me by the ear and put me back on the field. I was mad and was crying the whole day, but she obviously knew what was best. What is your favorite memory from your time at Ole Miss? The Alabama game my freshman year in which we beat them in Tuscaloosa was definitely one of the most memorable moments. How do you handle pregame jitters? I just joke around a lot. The guys in the receiver room are a lot alike. We joke around a lot and try not to take things too seriously.

What is your favorite college course? I really like my criminal justice classes. What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? The biggest challenge for me was probably just adjusting to college life when I first arrived at Ole Miss as a freshman. I had always been one of the best players on every team I played on and when I got here, I had to start from the bottom and just work my way up. What’s the main thing that attracted you to Ole Miss’ football program? It’s just a great place to be and everyone is so nice. My mom is right up the road in Jackson, so that played a big part in it. Who is your biggest fan? My grandma is probably my biggest fan. Even if she’s not able to make it to a game, she’s always sending me inspirational things. If she can’t make it, she’s always telling me, “Make that first one for Granny.” If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Definitely steak If you could tell the Ole Miss fans one thing, what would it be? This football team loves you dearly.

What is the last book you read? "Showboat: The Life of Kobe Bryant." mudandmag.com

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Meet the Players Q&A

Nick Fitzgerald Number: 7 Position: Quarterback Class: Senior Hometown: Richmond Hill, Georgia What’s your pregame song? "Adventure Club" by Superheroes Anonymous 9. What’s your favorite Game Day tradition? Dawg Walk. What are you currently watching on Netflix? "Power." What’s your earliest memory of football? Winning a flag football championship when I was six. What is your favorite memory from your time at State? My first touchdown pass to Donald Gray.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? Recovery and rehab from my dislocated ankle. What’s the main thing that attracted you to Mississippi State’s football program? Playing in the SEC and the family atmosphere of the program. What is your favorite spot in Starkville? Cotton District. Who is your biggest fan? My parents. They’ve sacrificed so much, and they are so proud no matter what I accomplish.

What is the last book you read? "Harry Potter."

If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Steak.

What is your favorite college course? Investments.

If you could tell Mississippi State fans one thing, what would it be? More cowbell!


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Meet the Players Q&A

Ken Webster Number: 5 Position: Defensive back Class: Senior Hometown: Decatur, Georgia What’s your pregame song? "Vica Versa" by Pastor Troy.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? My knee injury in 2016.

What’s your favorite gameday tradition? I go sit in the hot tub and then I go and take like a 30-minute nap.

What’s the main thing that attracted you to Ole Miss’ football program? I had every SEC offer, but I wanted to get away from both Georgia and Alabama, so I picked a school where I could play Alabama every year.

What are you currently watching on Netflix? "Queen of the South." What’s your earliest memory of football? I remember the first time I got the wind knocked out of me. What is your favorite memory from your time at Ole Miss? I will always remember the 2014 victory over Alabama when everyone rushed the field. What is your favorite college course? Theatre 260: Fundamentals of Acting.

Who is your biggest fan? My family in general are probably my biggest fans. They’re always very uplifting and always have my back. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Hot wings with lemon pepper sauce. If you could tell the Ole Miss fans one thing, what would it be? Hotty Toddy.

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Meet the Players Q&A

Jamal Peters Number: 2 Position: Cornerback Class: Senior Hometown: Bassfield, Mississippi What’s your pregame song? "Worth It" by NBA YoungBoy.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? The passing of my aunt.

What’s your favorite Game Day tradition? Dawg Walk.

What’s the main thing that attracted you to Mississippi State’s football program? Everyone being a family and loving one another.

What are you currently watching on Netflix? "Last Chance U." What’s your earliest memory of football? When I got hit by our starting linebacker while playing high school football. What is your favorite memory from your time at State? My 90-yard interception for a touchdown against Texas A&M last season. How do you handle pregame jitters? I just talk to God.

What is your favorite spot in Starkville? Starkville Cafe. Who is your biggest fan? My mom. She has been there since day one. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Sour Patch Kids. If you could tell Mississippi State fans one thing, what would it be? This is about to be a special season and one to remember. Hail State!

What is the last book you read? Our playbook. mudandmag.com

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Meet the Players Q&A

Zedrick Woods Number: 36 Position: Defensive back Class: Senior Hometown: Lake City, Florida What’s your pregame song? "Something About the Name Jesus" by Kirk Franklin. What’s your favorite gameday tradition? Bringing it up with Coach Jack in the middle. What are you currently watching on Netflix? "Friday Night Tykes." What’s your earliest memory of football? My earliest memory of football had to have been first starting to play the game when I was 6 years old. What is your favorite memory from your time at Ole Miss? Catching my first pick 6. How do you handle pregame jitters? Just listening to church music. 36

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What is the last book you read? "To Kill a Mockingbird." What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? My grandmother passing away. What’s the main thing that attracted you to Ole Miss’ football program? The landshark defense. Who is your biggest fan? My family and close friends because they’ve always supported me through the thick and thin. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Cheesecake.


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Meet the Players Q&A

Gerri Green Number: 4 Position: Defensive end Class: Senior Hometown: Greenville, Mississippi What’s your pregame song? "March Madness" by Future.

What is your favorite college course? American Government.

What’s your favorite Game Day tradition? Dawg Walk.

What’s the main thing that attracted you to Mississippi State’s football program? The brotherhood and family built by the staff and team.

What are you currently watching on Netflix? Any new Netflix Originals. What’s your earliest memory of football? Playing flag football in third grade. How do you handle pregame jitters? I sing as loud as possible. What is the last book you read? "Good to Great" by Jim Collins.

What is your favorite spot in Starkville? Where The Food At. Who is your biggest fan? My mom and my daughter. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Pizza. If you could tell Mississippi State fans one thing, what would it be? Thank you! mudandmag.com

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Meet the Players Q&A

Sean Rawlings Number: 50 Position: Offensive lineman Class: Senior Hometown: Madison, Mississippi What’s your pregame song? "Fortunate Son" by CCR.

What is your favorite college course? History with Jeff Bourdon.

What’s your favorite gameday tradition? Waking up early in the morning and watching College Gameday.

What’s the main thing that attracted you to Ole Miss’ football program? My family all went to Ole Miss and I grew up my entire life cheering on Ole Miss.

What are you currently watching on Netflix? "The Office." What’s your earliest memory of football? Playing tight end in the fourth grade and scoring a touchdown. What is your favorite memory from your time at Ole Miss? Winning the Sugar Bowl What is the last book you read? "Horse Soldiers" by Doug Stanton.

Who is your biggest fan? My biggest fans are definitely my parents. My dad played football here, but they’re both very proud of what I’ve been able to accomplish. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Sushi. If you could tell the Ole Miss fans one thing, what would it be? I’d just like them to know that I’ll always give relentless effort on the field no matter the circumstance. mudandmag.com

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We have relocated to 705 West Main St. | Tupelo Between Stone's Jewelry & Family Dollar Store

NFL Tins

Also Available

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Happy Hour 2-4 Every Day $1 Ice Cream Cones $1 Hot Dogs 1/2 Price Teas & Sodas

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Meet the Players Q&A

Elgton Jenkins Number: 74 Position: Offensive lineman Class: Senior Hometown: Clarksdale, Mississippi What’s your pregame song? "Work" by Big Boss DDG. What’s your favorite game day tradition? Getting up and preparing mentally. What are you currently watching on Netflix? "The Tortured." What’s your earliest memory of football? My first touchdown while playing tight end in Little League. What is your favorite memory from your time at State? My sophomore year when we blocked a kick on my birthday while playing in the St. Petersburg Bowl. How do you handle pregame jitters? I pray to God and talk to my grandma. What is the last book you read? Will Smith’s "Rules for Success."

What is your favorite college course? Math. What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever had to overcome? Overcame a surgery to continue to play. What’s the main thing that attracted you to Mississippi State’s football program? The atmosphere and the team bond. What is your favorite spot in Starkville? Spotlight and Touch of Luv Barbershop. Who is your biggest fan? My mom. She has been supportive since day one. If you could eat only one thing the rest of your life, what would it be? Chicken. If you could tell Mississippi State fans one thing, what would it be? Hail State! And don’t stop believing! mudandmag.com

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3242 NORTH GLOSTER STREET | 662.840.8450 TUPELO, MISSISSIPPI

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Our mission is to provide affordable, quality housing and services which reect and support independence, dignity, choice, privacy and individuality in meeting the needs and preferences of our Residents in a home-like setting. 44

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(662) 256-8406

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Cowbells & Calligraphy By Emma Kent

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Reed’s...delivering conďŹ dence, pride, and joy. Historic Downtown Tupelo 662.842.6453 | Mall at Barnes Crossing 662.842-5287 Historic Downtown Starkville 662.323.2684 | www.reedsms.com

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V

icki Burnett has always painted — since she was 12 years old, in fact — but it wasn’t until 2013 that she decided to make her love of painting a full-time gig. Except she doesn’t paint canvases for walls and frames. She paints cowbells for cheering on the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Burnett painted her first cowbell when she was in college in the 1980s. It was for her late husband, who was then just a friend. She still has the cowbell, which features an older version of MSU’s Bully mascot. “That was back when you had to sneak them into the games,” she said. Once cowbells were officially allowed back into Davis Wade Stadium, Burnett started painting them again. She would paint them to take to Bunco as prizes, and for family and friends who asked. As friends told friends, the orders began to pour in. “It has not stopped,” she said of her business. “I paint almost every single day. I get orders from Texas, Florida, Colorado — just all over the country.” Burnett takes orders and communicates with clients mostly through Facebook. She can be contacted via her Facebook page, Burnett Cowbells and Calligraphy. Burnett begins by sketching her design onto the cowbell. Then, she paints over it with acrylic paint. Before paint can be applied to the cowbell, she must prep the surface by sanding it down so the paint will stick to it. She typically uses thicker layers of paint to help her work stand the test of time. “These are keepsake cowbells, so I want them to last,” Burnett said. A recent commission is a cowbell that features a couple’s portrait in honor of their 50th anniversary. The couple’s daughter sent Burnett their photo from when they were first

See a video about Burnett's custom cowbells at mudandmag.com.

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DESIGNS FOR OUTDOOR

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married, and Burnett sketched the portrait onto a cowbell and painted it. She even translated the black-and-white photo into color. The result is a keepsake honoring the couple’s 50 years of marriage in true Bulldog style. “I’ve done proposal cowbells — that’s a lot of fun — where they tie the ring onto the cowbell,” Burnett said. MSU also commissions a lot of bells from Burnett, especially the President’s Office. Burnett’s bells are often given by the university as retirement gifts. “That’s what I love about what I do — I get to be a part of all of these celebrations,” Burnett said. Burnett earned her associate’s degree in art from Hinds Community College before transferring to MSU, where she majored in communication. She graduated from MSU in 1986. She admits now that she was trying to be practical in choosing her major, but she wishes she had continued studying art. “Whatever you’re passionate about you should do,” she said. “God is good. He has blessed the work of my hands.” In the years before she began her business, Burnett said she often painted simply for pleasure. She loves painting landscapes and other scenes using oil paints. “I don’t paint as much for myself as I used to, and I really miss that,” she said. She still makes time every now and then for her own personal development as an artist, though, attending workshops and other classes. She also takes on other projects, like a mural she is currently working on at the Claiborne Retirement Community in Starkville. “I try really hard to continue to develop professionally,” she said.

Painting cowbells has expanded her skill set in some ways. Before, Burnett admits she wasn’t confident in her ability to paint portraits. Now, after being commissioned to paint so many portraits on cowbells, Burnett feels like she’s gotten the hang of it. “I’ve been doing a lot of portraits lately,” Burnett said. “I’ve never really been a portrait artist, but I’ve realized that I love portrait painting. Every portrait grows me and expands and challenges me because it forces me to look and paint carefully.” Burnett paints anything and everything onto her cowbells — from landscapes to buildings to meaningful messages and words. One of her favorite designs is an MSU bulldog outlined in a range of bright colors against a white background. She’s painted the Chapel of Memories, Lee and McCool halls and nearly all of the athletic facilities. When the MSU baseball team made it to the College World Series in June, Burnett joined the fun by making custom bells featuring the team’s good luck charm: the rally banana. “That was so much fun to paint,” she said. “I had a lot of interest in that one.” Burnett applied to become licensed to use MSU’s trademarks shortly after starting her business, which means she can use the MSU logo, players’ images and Bully in her work. She’s gotten to paint a lot of things on a lot of cowbells, but there’s still one commission Burnett hopes to do one of these days. Onlookers ring cowbells at the winter Olympics for skiiers and snowboarders so that they can be heard by the athletes, even at the top of the slopes. “I would love to paint a cowbell for an Olympic skiier or snowboarder,” Burnett said. M

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• Explore Corinth •

We Have The Newest Styles Of Women’s Clothing (S-3X), Jewelry, Gifts, Home Goods, & A Little Something For Your Furry Friend!

1009 Taylor Street Corinth, MS 38834

622.287.3770 Tues-Fri 10-5 • Sat 10-3

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We strive to make as much as possible from scratch & serve fresh ingredients. From fresh baked sourdough

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keep items orginal to us & as fresh as possible. We also strive to keep prices affordable but with quality products. Our name is after my husband’s 1967 Pontiac Firebird Convertible in a beautiful lighter blue color.

I am on a mission to feed hungry children in the area

as I have such a heart for children, with 5 of my own. Some of the profits will go to feed children through many different organizations in the local area including the bookbag ministry.Please make sure to stop by & give us a try. You will just

love what you try!

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516 E. Waldron Corinth, MS mudandmag.com 286-5597

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Baton Rouge TRAVEL

By Sydni Dunn

Both the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Ole Miss Rebels will head to Baton Rouge this fall to take on the Louisiana State University Fighting Tigers. Whether football fans making the trip plan to cheer on their teams from stadium seats in Death Valley or bar stools at a local dive, here’s how to spend a weekend in the Red Stick without straying far from the flagship campus.

Louisiana State Capitol Building WHERE TO PLAY From rolling down Indian Mounds that predate the Egyptian pyramids to watching the university’s live mascot roam his habitat to purchasing a clear purse and other gameday gear, fans could build a full itinerary without ever leaving the oak tree-lined campus. But for those interested in playing tourist, Baton Rouge offers a diverse lineup. Visitors can explore Louisiana’s Old State Capitol, Shaw Center for the Arts or Knock Knock Children’s Museum; admire colorful Craftsman-style homes in Spanish Town and the Garden District; get lost in a maze of antiques and art at The Market at Circa 1857; browse the stacks at Cottonwood Books; stroll around the LSU lakes or through Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center; play a round of footgolf at City Park; take a boozy tour of Tin Roof Brewing Co. or Cane Land Distilling Co.; try your luck at L’auberge Casino; or experience the nightlife along downtown’s Third Street or in Tigerland.

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Old State Capitol Building

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Gov't Tacos

WHERE TO STAY The Watermark Hotel, located in the heart of Baton Rouge’s downtown near restaurants, bars and attractions, tastefully blends local heritage with modern flare. Built in the late 1920s, the art deco building stood as the city’s first skyscraper and served as the headquarters of the Louisiana Trust and Savings Bank. In 2016, the landmark was transformed into a stylish 144-room luxury hotel. For a quieter stay away from the buzz of gameday, check into The Stockade Bed and Breakfast. Tucked away off Highland Road, about 4 miles from the LSU campus, the Hacienda-style house, named after the Civil War stockade that once occupied the grounds, offers four guest rooms and one two-bedroom suite, each with a private bath, a colorful garden and a homemade Southern breakfast. WHERE TO EAT No matter what type of fare or what time of day, there’s no shortage of good eats in the Capital City. (That is, if you have room in your belly after tailgate hopping around the LSU Parade Ground).

Mississippi Riverfront

Breakfast: Grab a classic cup of joe — with chicory, of course — at Highland Coffees, a gluten-free scone at Magpie Cafe or a gourmet doughnut at District Donuts. Brunch: Find a spot on the patio to indulge in the seafood-stuffed French toast or a boudin omelet at Parrain’s Seafood Restaurant. Listen to jazz while eating grits and grillades at Beausoleil Restaurant and Bar. Sip a famous, fully-loaded “Bloody Mason” at Mason’s Grill.

Coffee Call Tinroof Brewing Co.

The Market at Circa 1857

Mason's Grill

Lunch: Order a crawfish boil elote and an artisanal taco at celebrity chef Jay Ducote’s Gov’t Taco inside the new White Star Market. Snack on crispy strips of fried catfish and add an autographed dollar bill to the ceiling at George’s under the I-10 East overpass. Go traditional with fried boudin balls and a fully dressed shrimp poboy at The Chimes. Dinner: Travel “Round the World” with family-run Fleur de Lis Pizza. Pair a specialty cocktail with a Creole entree at Bistro Byronz. Take in a panoramic view of the Mississippi River with a glass of sake and specialty sushi roll at Tsunami. Dessert: Enjoy a “Tiger Bite” of ice cream at the LSU AgCenter Dairy Store, a sweet slice of S’mores pie from Elsie’s Plate and Pie, or a plate of powdersugar-covered beignets at Coffee Call. Late Night: Biscuits or burgers — chow down at the iconic, 24-hour Louie’s Cafe. M

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Photos provided by Visit Baton Rouge, The Stockade B&B, The Market at Circa 1857 and Jordan Hefler.


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The Cookie Canvas By Emma Kent

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O

ne-hundred fifty. That’s how many cookies Sarah Hutto bakes and decorates every week. In her cookie studio in her Oxford home, she spends her days (and nights) mixing up batches upon batches of dough, which she then lovingly transforms into colorful, custom sugar cookies for her business The Cookie Canvas. It all started with a birthday party when Hutto was living in Meridian. Her eldest son was turning 1, and she was set on having custom cookies for his birthday party. The only problem was she couldn’t find anyone local to make them. “I just wanted cookies so badly for my son’s first birthday party,” Hutto said.“So I watched some YouTube videos and thought, ‘it can’t be that hard,’ but guess what? It’s really, really hard.” After some highs and lows, Hutto had made her first batch of decorated sugar cookies, and she’s been baking them ever since. Friends and family began asking her to make cookies for their parties and events, and when she and her husband moved to Oxford, she started making cookies to take to The Grove for tailgating. It took Hutto about a year to perfect her dough recipe. “It was really just a lot of trial and error,” she said. She experimented with types of butter, different extracts, baking soda vs. baking powder, oven temperature and more. The result: a cookie recipe uniquely hers. “It’s all very personal, which is weird to say about a cookie, but it is,” she said. Now, Hutto works an average of 90 hours per week baking and decorating — that’s more than her husband, an anesthesiologist, works. The process is this: bake, “flood,” ice, detail. “Flooding” is the process of creating the icing base for the detailed designs Hutto creates on her cookies. Hutto began her baking business in her KitchenAid stand mixer, making double batches of dough multiple times per week. Sometimes she would get her hand mixer out to help speed the dough-making along. Finally, she decided she needed to upgrade. Her industrial-sized stand mixer, weighing in at 400 pounds, now makes it possible for Hutto to make all the dough she needs with a lot less effort. “Basically, what I was doing five times a week I can now do in 15 minutes once a week,” she said. Hutto has a cookie studio in her home where the mixer lives along with her collection of close to 500 cookie cutters. As she began doing more and more custom cookies, Hutto decided to invest in a 3D printer to create the exact cookie cutters she needs. “I do so many custom orders, so anytime I need a cutter I just go down and print one,” she said. Hutto works with local event planners and does most of her cookies for parties and weddings. She loves trying out new shapes and designs. For Hutto, the quirkier the cookie, the better. “The one thing I am really waiting for someone to come to me with is narwhals,” she said. Hutto gets a lot of requests for the Harry Potter cookies, which are her favorite to make. However, they require more time and detail than some of her other creations. “I think the challenge of it is what makes it so fun for me,” she said. 56

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•Explore New Albany• ecor • T-Shirts • Wind Chimes • Angels • Stephen Joseph • Swan Creek Candles •

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New & Re-Newed Furniture & Accessories Fabulous Finds in quality furniture and accessories at affordable prices. Create your own style and let us help you bring it together with antiques, unique artwork, wall decor, floral arrangements and much more that you must see to appreciate!

Thank you for your continued support. we appreciate your business! God’s blessings from my house to yours!

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N E P O NOW NER

FOR DI. N 9PM 5PM TO

- SAT . 11AM TO 2PM . S R U H T I MON.-FR EST ’S B LUNCH IN’ AT IT K O O C E YL HOMEST

E EAT FRE S D I K E T WHER AY NIGH THURSD See a video about Hutto's cookie masterpieces at mudandmag.com.

Her cookie business has taken off locally, which has always been a dream for Hutto. With the help of social media, her cookies have also made their way out of state. A few years ago Hutto made "Gilmore Girls" cookies that ended up in the hands of some of the show’s cast and crew. “My first love before my husband and children is 'Gilmore Girls',” Hutto joked. A "Gilmore Girls" fan festival was held in Kent, Connecticut, and one of Hutto’s close friends was attending. The festival’s organizers reached out after seeing Hutto’s Gilmore-inspired cookies on Instagram, and she ended up making several more batches to send to the event to be used in the cast and crew’s welcome baskets. Social media has played a big role in helping Hutto connect with the community and grow her business. She’s always posting photos of new designs and videos of her decorating process on her Instagram, @thecookiecanvasmississippi. As fall approaches, Hutto will be busy making cookies for tailgates, fall weddings, and this year for the first time, Ole Miss sorority rush. She’ll be making cookies tailored to each sorority for Bid Day and to be gifted to girls throughout rush week. “I’m super excited and overwhelmed,” Hutto said. “It’s intense, so I have a high standard I have to meet.” Although she’s constantly surrounded by them, Hutto admits she doesn’t eat very many of her signature sugar cookies. She leaves that to her husband and children. “I have a little cookie bandit,” Hutto said, referring to her 4-year-old son.“I always make a few extra and taste them to make sure they taste good, but I rarely eat them. Honestly, I really prefer just a good ol’ chocolate chip cookie.” M

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on the menu:

Service Stations FOOD

Sometimes the best food is hiding in plain sight: We’re talking about your local gas station. We took a tour of some of the best food to be found in service stations across Northeast Mississippi. COCONUTS, STARKVILLE Sandwiched between Starkville’s Nash Street Historic District and Cotton District is every college kid’s dream: One place where you can buy cheap beer, find good food and fill up your gas tank. The Marathon at 601 University Drive may appear unassuming from the outside, but inside are a wealth of food options. From wings, burgers and gyros to catfish plates and chicken tenders, Coconuts is somewhat of a one-stop shop. Their specialty, though, is made-from-scratch burritos. Oh, and #TacoTuesday, when you can grab seven tacos for just $2.99. 601 University Drive, Starkville, MS 39759. Open 6 a.m. to 12 a.m. Monday through Wednesday, 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. 4 CORNERS CHEVRON, OXFORD If you’ve had a night out in Oxford, you’ve probably had chicken on a stick, and you probably got it from 4 Corners Chevron. The gas station is just a short walk from Oxford’s famous square, making it a late-night food destination for college students and a convenient spot to grab a pregame snack for football fans. Although they serve other items, 4 Corners is known for its chicken on a stick. It’s exactly what it sounds like — three pieces of fried chicken made with 4 Corners’ special breading on a sturdy skewer. The gas station sells more than 1,500 chickens-on-sticks every home game weekend during football season, and they’ve even started catering. 502 S Lamar Blvd., Oxford, MS 38655. Always open. BREWER GROCERY, SHANNON Don’t show up to Brewer Grocery for lunch if you’re not willing to wait in line. Trust us, though, it’s worth it. For the past 18 years the gas station and store has been serving up homemade Southern fare for breakfast and lunch in the Brewer community. The locals keep the store busy, with larger crowds coming on Thursdays and Fridays for the popular hamburger steak and barbecue. The lunch menu is always changing with dishes like chicken pot pie, lasagna and smoked chicken on the rotation. The store also serves cooked-to-order breakfast and offers some ready-made breakfasts for their patrons to pick up on-the-go. 403 Co Rd 855, Shannon, MS 38868. Open Monday through Saturday 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. THE STORE, SALTILLO The Store in Saltillo has been serving breakfast and plate lunches for three years, seven days a week. The store serves a fish plate every Friday, which is its most popular lunch, and chicken and burgers on the weekends. There are also homemade desserts and the popular pork chop sliders. For breakfast, The Store offers fresh fruit, parfaits, oatmeal from scratch, hashbrown casserole, chocolate gravy, sausage gravy, biscuits, eggs, fresh-baked pastries and more. The Store is walletfriendly, too, serving up specials like two pork chop sliders with a side of fries for just $4.49. 2793 Highway 145, Saltillo, MS 38866. Open 4:30 a.m. until 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Sunday. THOMAS STREET GROCERY, TUPELO Thomas Street Grocery has long been known in Tupelo as one of the best breakfast spots in town, but what some may not realize is that the store also has an impressive lunch menu. That’s probably due to the fact the store offers everything from Mexican chicken casserole to fried catfish and salmon patties to a spinach salad topped with smoked chicken and cranberries. The menu changes every day, and each entree can be accompanied by any of the grocery’s many Southern sides. Not to mention the homemade desserts and frozen casseroles, ready to take home and heat up for dinner. In the morning, hot, fresh breakfast sandwiches and biscuits are a crowd favorite. 133 S. Thomas St., Tupelo, MS 38801. Open 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.


No matter which provider you see, you will get the benefits of our specialized team approach to the highest quality of newborn and adult care.

Infant/Children/Adult and Urgent Care Services Whitney Walker, Wanda Wanda Stroupe, Haynes Shereda Cynthia CynthiaJill FNP-C DNP, FNP-BC NP-C Saint, Stroupe, Haynes, Simmons, FNP-C DNP, FNP-BC FNP-C FNP-C

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Weddings ~ Receptions ~ Luncheons ~ Rehearsal Dinners Large Open Parking/Entertainment Area Available

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GOLDEN HOUR FASHION

Fall in the South can be tricky. It’s too hot for sweaters, jeans, boots and the rest, but fall enough to want to indulge in some new clothes (and pumpkin spice lattes) for the season. So how do we deal? Transitional pieces in rich autumn hues. This fall, we’re loving shades of gold and mustard, booties that give your ankles a little bit of breathing room, and breezy fabrics like cotton and linen. To top things off, tortoiseshell accessories and lightweight neck scarves add a little flare to these fall looks. PHOTOS BY LAUREN WOOD

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George-Mary's in Starkville: relaxed crop top $29, gingham overalls $59 mudandmag.com

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L.A. Green in Tupelo: Forever Lovely jumpsuit $64.99, neck scarf $14.99, Dolce Vita Renly bootie $148.99, star hoop earrings $52.99, gold bangles $42.99 for 3

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I Just Have To Have It in Oxford: “On The Block” sweater $44, high-waist denim skirt $46


Bellissimo in New Albany: She and Sky striped top $26, Love Tree vest $30, Judy Blue dark wash skinny jeans $37, Qupid tan booties $37, fleur de lis necklace $28

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MLM Clothiers in Tupelo: Peter Millar shirt $145, 34 Heritage 5-Pocket jeans $175, socks $29.95 a pair, Martin Dingman shoes and belt, prices upon request


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Sydney's Children Boutique in Tupelo: Overalls $59.50, shirt $39.50, earrings $14, sunglasses $28, bracelets $8 each


L.A. Green in Tupelo: Maven West top $164, AG jeans $178, Dolce Vita Renly bootie $148.99, bangles $42.99 for 3


Reed's in Tupelo: Vineyard Vines Shirt $98.50, Mountain khakis $69.95, The North Face Resolve 2 Jacket $90, collegiate Belt $46, Uggs 72 Camino Boot $140 mudandmag.com l Chelsea


Must-Have Accessories Sydney's Children Boutique in Tupelo: Bracelets $8 each

MLM Clothiers in Tupelo: Marcoliani men's socks $29.95 per pair

Bellissimo in New Albany: tan crossbody purse $65, metal crossbody purse $50

L.A. Green in Tupelo: Star hoop earrings $52.99, Variant neck scarf $14.99

George-Mary's in Starkville: Enamel tortoise shell earrings $12, wood and brass earrings $10


• Buyer’s Guide • The Name That Stands For Quality

WAGES ROOFING

FAMILY OWNED & OPERATED SINCE 1972

Call Now to Schedule Your Free Consultation & Estimate 63 Carnathan Drive • Tupelo, MS 38801

Riccar • SEBO • Sirena • Maytag • Electrolux Rainbow • Kirby • Hoover • Lampe Berger • e-cloth

Reasons To Own a SEBO

Now Booking 2019 Senior Portraits!

662-840-5101

Monday thru Friday: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

www.wagesroofing.com

We will clean and service your Rolex for $300 (Parts extra)

662-213-1471 | martypettit.com

FUN. FALL.

Fashion.

• Superior Pet Hair Removal • Sealed Hepa filtration system • Commercial grade components • Incredible warranty coverage

907 Varsity Drive | Tupelo | 842.3342 www.varsityvacuums.com

Tri County Auto Repair Family Owned & Operated Japanese & Domestic

Shop our jewelry counter

•Complete Automotive Repair •Air Conditioning •Brake Service •Tire Repair Service •Computer Diagnostics •New/Used Tires

Nick Hazel & John B. Hazel

157 Hwy 178 • Tupelo 662-841-2204 (south of Sherman city limits)

425 North Gloster Street Tupelo • 842-8298 Thomas Scott, Owner scott.watch@yahoo.com Come Shop Our Selection of Diamond Jewelry!

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GIRLS: NEWBORN - SIZE 16 • BOYS: NEWBORN - SIZE 12

115 N Thomas Tupelo • Mon-Fri 10-5 & Sat 10-2


• Buyer’s Guide • Make it Special, Make it Sydney’s

Specializing in On-Site Hair and Makeup for Your Entire Wedding Party

ALLEN’S

Heating & Cooling 3498 Veterans Hwy • Pontotoc

489-7273

Photo by Laura Gibson Photography

Sales, Service and Installation Gas Lines

1114 W MAIN TUPELO, MS 662-841-2839 | 9AM - 5PM

Mississippi Bride

Lit’l Sprouts

Winner Best Mother of the Bride Attire

Customized Wedding Packages Available Call for Your Free Consultation

Kimberly Spencer Candice Tutor 662-422-8711

662-419-8122

Children’s Consignment Sizes 0-16 (Girls and Boys)

Shabby Chic

Consignment Boutique Janna Grace Carnathan

Sizes 2-26

If You Need Something To Wear To The Game Or Just A Fall Outfit, We Have It At Prices That Won’t Blow The Budget!

Locally Owned & Operated • Janice & Ken Storey, owners 404 NORTH GLOSTER TUPELO, MS

808 HARRISON STREET • TUPELO (662) 840-9909 Open Wed.-Fri. 11:00-5:30/Sat. 11:00-2:30

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BARKLEY TRAVEL TOUR PACKAGES Ozark Mountain Christmas Branson, MO November 26-29, 2018 4 Days Trip Includes: * Daniel O’Donnell - “Christmas with Daniel” * ”Samson” at the Sight & Sound Theatre * Andy Williams Christmas Starring the Osmond Brothers & Lennon Sisters * Shoji Tabuchi Christmas Show * Silver Dollar City Christmas * Branson Landing Shopping * 2 Dinners Price per person: Single $920, Double $730, Triple $670, Quad $640

A Colonial Christmas in Williamsburg, VA

November 29 – December 4, 2018 6 Days Trip Includes: * 3 Nights - The Woodlands in Colonial Williamsburg * 1 Night – Inn on the River in Pigeon Forge TN * 1 Night - Asheville NC * The Grand Illumination – Colonial Williamsburg * Ticket to Colonial Williamsburg * Ticket to Busch Gardens Christmas Town * Ticket to Smoky Mountain Opry Christmas Show * Admission to The Biltmore Estate Candlelight Tour * Dinner at Christina Campbell’s Tavern- Colonial Williamsburg, VA Price per person: Single $1600, Double $1130, Triple $975, Quad $895

Call and Book Today! 662-534-5203

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141 mudandmag.com WEST BANKHEAD ST • NEW ALBANY • WWW.BARKLEYTRAVEL.COM


THE TAYLOR INN By W. Derek Russell

T

he storied past of Taylor Inn can still be felt by guests who enter its halls. “It's a unique spot and people that have lived here their whole lives don't know what all is back here," said Paige Evans, owner of the inn. "It's just tucked back in here and you don't notice it, but it is charming. Your blood pressure goes down when you step on the property. It's just a slow-down kind of place and all of Taylor is, really." Erected in the late 19th century, the structure began as the home and office of a local physician. Two rooms on the east side were used for inpatient care and the doctor's family occupied the west side of the home, with

the center acting as an in-house office. After changing hands in the mid-1950s and again at the turn of the century, the inn represents the culture of hospitality in Taylor, Evans said. “We see it as coming full circle in its use as Taylor Inn,” she said. Currently, the inn consists of two buildings, the farmhouse and the newer small cottage called the Chicken House – both of which are available for rental. "The Chicken House started out as just that: a chicken coop," Evans said. "It just got too cute so the previous owners moved in. The Chicken House sits in a chicken run in the garden. It's tin inside and out with a loft and full kitchen and

by Carmen Cristo mudandmag.com

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1207 Nelle St. | Tupelo MS

COMPLETE COMFORT

0%

FINANCING FOR UP TO 60 MONTHS

Apply Online at www.MMHeatCool.net

FREE ESTIMATES

1255 NELLE STREET | TUPELO

Hours: wed-fri 10-5 | sat 10-3

662-844-0270

www.mmheatcool.net • Scott Mattox, Owner * All financing requires an approved credit application.

CLEAR EYES, FULL HEARTS, CAN’T LOSE! – FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS

• Thorough Eye Health Assessment • Treatment of Eye Conditions • Vision Evaluation & Diagnosis • Dry Eye, Allergy & Emergency Eye Care

L.P. Britt, PA Family Optometry lpbrittpa.com

Call 662-844-3436

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2270 W. Main, Ste A • Tupelo, MS 38801


"Taylor is a very unique little spot with unique individuals and everyone has been very supportive of us." -Paige Evans

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everyone sort of melts when they see it. It's an adult fort or playhouse. It's a cute little spot." The main portion of the inn features 2,200 square feet of nostalgia. "It's a mix of your grandmother's house, your mother's house and a lot of whimsical pieces," Evans said. "We wanted to recreate nostalgia and I think it does. People walk in the house and point to something or see something that reminds them of their own childhood. It's got a little piece of magic in it." There's also a portion of the grounds with an upstairs loft apartment that sleeps four and the Big Truck Theater venue. "(It's) not your average barn in the area of Taylor," Evans said. The barn, constructed of pine lumber, is the perfect setting for any event from weddings to receptions, offering a curtained stage that features a flatbed truck as an extension. Evans said she and her husband Glen had visited the venue many times before, which is one decision that led them to buying Taylor Inn. "That made us feel a lot more comfortable with buying the place because we loved the Big Truck Theatre," Evans said. "The owner at the time called me because he had heard from a banker friend that I loved to redo old houses." The purchase led the old farmhouse to be revitalized for the inn. "It was a prime piece of real estate to redo," Evans said. "We just sort of fell into this and didn't know what to do with the property when we got it. It was well suited for a bed and breakfast and came with a fabulous entertainment venue. So that's what we did." Evans said being off the grid is ideal. "We loved the location and loved being across the street from two very fine restaurants and thought it was a great spot and something the community could use," she said. "Taylor is a very unique little spot with unique individuals and everyone has been very supportive of us." Getting to meet people has become a bit of a hobby for the couple in their new venture, which makes owning an inn an ideal endeavor. "I have been in the hospitality industry since I graduated college," Evans said. "I'm very comfortable having people around me and carrying on conversations. I love hearing people's stories. I like that. It's a Southern thing – that whole feeling part of people's lives and hearing their stories and creating an environment where they feel comfortable letting you into their lives when they're relaxed ... it's a nice business to be in." With football season looming, the Taylor Inn's main house can be used as an abode for fans, offering full-home rental for travelers. "We started out renting rooms only during the games and it sort of evolved into people trying to get their friends and family into the house, so just this year we started advertising it on Airbnb and VRBO as a whole-house rental," Evans said. "It just seems to work better that way. It's better suited for big groups during game time. Especially when they're all rooting for the same team." Whether you're seeking Ole Miss football, the Oxford experience or the Taylor getaway, the Taylor Inn offers a little something for everyone. "We want everyone who walks through our doors to feel thankful to be in this place,” Evans said. "and leave with the feeling that they have a new home in Taylor." M 80

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Now Looking for Licensed Workers!

Cosmetologists • Nail Technicians • Massage Therapists • Estheticians • Eyelash Specialists • Braiders If interested email resume to poshnailsalonandspa@outlook.com

1811 W. MAIN STREET • SUITE C • TUPELO, MS 38801 • 662.432.4921

SAME AMAZING FOLKS GREAT NEW LOCATION • 810 ROBERT E. LEE DR. | TUPELO, MSBy38801 JB Clark Across from Midtown Pointe (Formerly Gloster Creek Village)

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Da Bombs By Cristina Carreon

ising high school senior Morgan Tibbens hasn’t let Down syndrome get in the way of her dreams. She spent the summer looking at college options and thinking about her future, all while running her own business making and selling bath bombs and soaps. Morgan, along with her mother, co-runs the bath product company, called Da Bombs by Morgan. The company has products sold in 21 stores across the United States, and the mother-daughter duo are hopeful profits from Da Bombs will allow Morgan to have a true college experience. That’s where the ACCESS program at Mississippi State University comes in. The program teaches students with special needs skills to help them become independent. It also emphasizes giving special needs students that true college experience Morgan is hoping for — but because of many of the extra services provided through ACCESS, tuition for students in the program can be expensive. Over the summer, Morgan attended a camp at MSU to learn more about the four-year ACCESS program. “We got some feedback on some things we need to work on, so that was really helpful for us, so we’re excited about that,” said Denise Tibbens, Morgan's mother. Although Morgan is active in school programs and extracurriculars, Denise said her daughter is still working on getting out of her shell a bit more. It’s something they hope the ACCESS program will help with. “We’re hoping that when we get to Mississippi State, she will make lots of friends, she’ll come out of her shell, and hopefully, they will teach them how to take the bus to go downtown, to go grocery shopping, so my hope is that she will get accepted and when she gets accepted, they also find jobs the students might be interested in,” she said. ACCESS students’ interests and hobbies are matched with 82

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on-campus jobs as well. “When she leaves Mississippi State, we hope the program will show what she has done and how she has done it, to be able to get a job that pays at least minimum wage and maybe more. My hope is she’ll be able to live on her own and that’s the kind of skills they teach,” Denise said. Morgan was invited to tailgate with ACCESS program students at football games this fall. “They have a tent and their own spot, so she’s really excited about going down there and seeing all of the people she’s already met and has become friends with, so we’re excited about doing some tailgating and going to some of the football games this year,” Denise said. Until it’s time for her to move forward with her college plans, Morgan will keep sharing her story and her light, not only through Da Bombs, but also through cheerleading, pageants and advocacy. At the end of July, Morgan and Denise spoke to representatives from the State Board of Education to encourage Mississippi to expand the Best Buddies program throughout the state. The two also visited Indiana, where Morgan attended a Best Buddies conference as the first ambassador in the program to represent the state of Mississippi. And in August, Morgan participated in the Miss Amazing pageant in Chicago, a national pageant competition for contestants with disabilities similar to the Miss America pageant. When asked if she was nervous to compete against 40 other contestants in the Miss Amazing pageant, Morgan just laughed. “She is great when she’s on that stage and she turns it on and then when she gets off the stage, she’s Morgan again,” her mother said. “It’s so great to see how her confidence has grown when she’s doing the things she loves to do; things that make her smile and feel beautiful just like everybody else.” M


Jayla Lockrige Lawhon Elementary

HOME

Is Where Your Story Begins

Jason Scruggs Owner

Gena Nolan Managing Broker

TUPELO/SALTILLO 3543 Tom Watson Dr. (662) 620-2232

NEW ALBANY 206 HWY 15N (662) 534-2377

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Mud & Magnolias September 2018  
Mud & Magnolias September 2018