Leave it to a bunch of hens …

Those garrulous girls can be heard

all around the farm.


Is a raccoon causing the ruckus?

A weasel, perhaps? Stray dog? Barn cat? Eagle? Owl?

The uproar sends me running every time,

tripping over my feet and bushes along our pathways,

to see what’s ruffling their feathers.

And more often than not,

what do I find?

Just a coop full of cachinnating chickens …

What’s so funny?


Photo by Jeff Kramer via Wikimedia Commons

Cachinnate (KAK-i-nayt): a verb meaning to laugh very loudly or immoderately.

double take

Have you ever considered how many women’s names have taken on double meanings in the English language?

If you’re scratching your head, take it from a gal who knows …

A Mary Jane, after all, isn’t a far cry from a MaryJane.

(I prefer the Butters version.)

See what I mean?

If you’re a Nellie or a Patsy, you’re nodding emphatically right now.

Unfortunately, girls named Nellie and Patsy are harder to come by these days,

thanks to popular expressions that have put a damper on their demand.

“Whoa Nellie! It just ain’t so,” said Nervous Nellie. “Don’t blame me. I refuse to be your Patsy.”

Let’s take a gander at several handles that have become noteworthy

(or even a tad notorious)

by their starring roles in our ever-evolving vernacular …

Mary Jane

My name, with a space between, doubles as the name of a …

perfectly legal …


I must say I’m pleased as punch—who doesn’t love a Mary Jane? It’s a shoe-in.


Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Plain Jane

Some Janes have it harder than others. Jane paired with plain is a term used to describe a woman of “unremarkable appearance.” With a play on words, I named my milk chocolate “Playin’ Jane.”  I quite prefer her lack of fanfare over the more complicated Janes. Divulge your favorite type of chocolate in the comments section below and this Playin’ Jane (along with her friends, Almond Daze and Mintsummer’s Day) will get mailed to you when our very own StellaJane picks your name out of our giveaway hat.gleaming_word-chocollect-milk_8959

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