There is no reason a negative can't become a positive if you were born Neale Martin. It's all in the angle. How you place your hands on the keyboard. How you see yourself and others... finding out what makes your cup of tea.

Like a tree that reaches for the sky, Neale Martin MUMSIE Bearden has a starry-eyed, yet pragmatic approach to life. As a matter of fact, her favorite expression is "It was meant to be," reports first-born daughter, Bettie.

Her roots run deep and while she has traveled the world over from Los Angeles to The Far East, Atlanta to Paris, home remains Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

Mumsie knows how to be serious as well as silly. She loves to dance, has the energy of a hummingbird and is as American as Apple Pie. However the words that resonate most came from her grandmother: "Did you meet anyone whom you think more of than yourself?"

Glamour was part of it but The Coconut Grove, where she first dated Butch Bearden, was just a place. It was people that mattered and Mumsie was not only crazy about her family but also Crazy For You, the Broadway hit for which she was an Angel Investor.

Friends have been numerous from the Joneses next door to Fannie Mae. However only those on the inside track knows what she means when she talks about "my friend."

Always dressed to the nines, Mumsie hasn't been so proper she can't rise above the highest expectations to enjoy life and its rituals.

The most important people in her life? Whoever she is with at the moment, but truly her two daughters, Bettie and Neale, her granddaughter Rachel and her son-in-law, Jonathan. And it's never a dog's life if you're Mumsie's dog.

Scarlett said, "Tomorrow is another day." Mumsie, another Southern wonder, would say "Tomorrow will be another beautiful day."

Why settle for Christmas when you can have one more party the day after?

Postscript (Bettie): There's something to be said for denial. Here's to you "Mumsie."

DIMONSCAPE by Roz Dimon, © 2005, Roz Dimon. All Rights Reserved.
Patent Pending.