Monday, September 29, 2008


Lauren, the accountant @ one of the credit unions I examine, had a very persnickety rabbit called Tootsie who ruled her home. Tootsie had her own "palace" in the house, was litter-box trained, and was really one of the family.

Well, they had never heard of, so I had to school her. Lauren ended up getting her 2 human children disapproving rabbit t-shirts and books for Christmas. They loved it, especially in light of how much disapproving Tootsie herself was capable of.

Unfortunately, they lost Tootsie a few months ago, which was very sad for the whole family, but now they have a new family star! Meet Cookie. Is she not a cutie? Lauren reports that she is the most affectionate, snuggly bunny they've ever seen, and so far she's a very good girl. I'm sure she'll be disapproving of things in no time!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


The bird that has been visiting my parents' hummingbird feeder.
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After the Crash: America in the Great Depression - John Rublowsky (1970)

This is one of the books I've read this weekend. I was following his arguments - not really AGREEING, but FOLLOWING - until the last chapter when he says that an economic crash can't happen again for various reasons which already gave me serious misgivings about this guy's sanity.

And then I read the following statement at the beginning of this last chapter and my eyes popped out and I fell over dead.

"The most obvious difference [between 1929 and now (1970)] can be seen in the existence of a powerful, well-organized labor force. In 1929 the initial impact of the depression was experienced in the form of layoffs and wage cuts by working people. This loss of purchasing power on the part of the great bulk of the population forced the economy deeper into depression in a cycle that became almost impossible to break." [ok I'm following so far]

"Labor would no longer allow itself to serve as a cushion for national disaster as it did in 1929. At that time, the labor union movement was weak and ineffective. It could not prevent the wholesale firing of production workers and the drastic cutting of wages that proved to be one of the most serious sources of weakness in the 1929 economy. Today labor unions are too strong and too well-organized to permit the same kind of mass layoffs and firings. Labor, organized into a powerful political force, provides a prop to the economy that did not exist before the 1929 crash."

SERIOUSLY?!?! Did you seriously put that thought in writing, Mr. Rublowsky?

Dog park take #4

Saturday we went back to the dog park, and this time Greta had a good time. She even ran a little bit. A little beagle goaded her into chasing him, and she went zooming. She actually left our sides for a bit to check things out on her own. Schaffer, of course, led a pack of dogs around the perimeter to check for escape hatches. More pics in an album linked to the right.
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Schaffer yells "OH THE HUMANITY"!

Schaffer is in a deep depression wondering if production of WD Dogfood, Greenies, and MilkBone dog biscuits will cease as the economy continues to tank.
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Schaffer's stressed.

Schaffer reacts to news of WaMu's failure.
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New ring

My new ring. $7 @ Belk. I think it looks like a zinnia or something. LOVE it.
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Retirement dinner

My group had a retirement party for Marie @ Zea in Metairie. I love their asian shrimp appetizer. It was fun - unfortunately due to various circumstances we were missing 4 other group members :( (Randy, Randall, Lori, and Nicole).

From left Justin, Meredith, Jon, Marie, Me, Maegan and the soon-to-arrive Group I mascot, and Tobie.
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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Thanks MER!

While Jason was teaching class last night, Meredith came over and helped me take the dogs to the dog park. Fun was had by all, except Greta, who was hot and wanted me to hold her.

Schaffer was completely uninterested in the other dogs as he patrolled the smells and the fence-line for a hole from which to escape.

This picture depicts one of the 2 times Greta actually got more than 10 feet away from me. Don't worry - she came RIGHT BACK.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

"He's not fat he's big boned"

Finally got some good shots of NM's 450 pound cat, Fyo.

"It's always messed up with kids."

Note: for those of you new to the blog, Neighborman ("NM") is my neighbor's 4 year old little boy. I don't post his real name.

As I've said before, my neighbor's kid is a T.R.I.P. Yesterday his Mom, a landscape architect, needed to work on a really cool and important up-coming project for downtown Baton Rouge. His Dad is off deep-sea fishing, so I got to spend the afternoon with him. I wish I had a tape recorder, because I'm sure I won't remember all of the funniness.

The day started at 10:30 am. When I arrived, NM wanted to show me his pictures from the "members only" event he attended at the New Orleans Zoo. As we flipped through, he told me everything he remembered about each animal:
  • NM: White Flamingos take 2 or 4 years to turn pink. ME: Why is that? NM: Because that's what they told us.

  • NM: That is a lizard. ME: That looks like a snake! NM: That is a legless lizard ("Legleth lisword"). He has a different head than a snake.

  • He also had pics of a white tiger, a mad lion, elephants eating "walermelon", rhinoceros, "jaglars", "Inabino alligators", owls, ducks, "camilllllion", a swamp monster ("but he's not real"), "Me being a sea lion" (he had his head through one of those billboard things), "Me riding a statue", a tortoise, etc. etc. He knew what every single one was.

From the aquarium, he had pics of him feeding a sting ray "but he had his stingers cut off, and I fed him a fish and I put the fish down there and he just sucked it up", a pic of him "petting a nowse shark" (nurse shark), and a picture of him with two army guys he saw there. He is ob-sessed with all things army-police-camouflage related, and the guys got a kick out of him. Of course, he himself was dressed in head to toe camo. One of the guys gave him a patch from his uniform, and his Mom has now had to sew velcro on every one of his 100 camo shirts so he can always wear the badge.

Then we were off to whole foods, along with about 4,000 other people. It was packed, but we had a good time. He's a very adventurous eater - not picky at all. He wanted to try everything that they had out to sample. I gave him a bite of some bbq tofu and the clerk said "just tell him it's chicken" - no need. He loved it. We got a pizza for lunch and he picked out a cupcake with a red iced crawfish on top for desert.

On our way out of the parking lot of whole foods we saw where they had cut up a huge tree. He said "that's from the hurricane" and proceeded, the whole rest of the way home, to list for me everything a hurricane can knock over "trees, bushes, plants, and houses, and windows, and poles, and lights, and cars, and trucks, and construction men, and bulldozers, and signs, and branches, and christmas stuff, and halloween stuff...towers....metal things... walls... people... wires... school...". It takes at least 15 minutes to get home. This was when I really wished I had a tape recorder. It was cracking me up.

Once home, "Mr. Jason" came to eat pizza with us. We chopped up a little yellow bell pepper that he picked out of his garden to go on the pizza. He ate 3 big pieces, then his cupcake, then needed to show Mr. Jason his zoo photos. Jason was astounded by the amount of knowledge he retained.

Then we were off to the park - a brand new playground next to the dog park near the house. I said "Do you think there will be other children there". He said "Yeah, it's always messed up with kids."

We stayed for almost 2 hours and then it started getting sort of drizzly and windy and tons more kids started showing up with 2 different birthday parties, so I was pretty much done. It was fun though. He played with all the different kids and let them see and play with all his gadgetry (they were all fascinated by his bling). And any time somebody walked a dog by on the way to the park he basically climbed ON TOP of my head. He is TERRIFIED of dogs. At some point during the day - I don't remember when - he said something along the lines of "maybe then Greta wouldn't be so spastic".

So then we went back to the house and I got him to put on the costume from the previous night so I could take a picture, and he took pictures of everything in his house for about an hour. His Mom got home about 4:15. This morning he brought me a picture he had drawn thanking me for taking care of him. So sweet. So funny.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Where's my camera when I need it?

I missed an awesome picture of neighborman decked out to go eat Chinese food in his LSU hat and sparkly purple lone-ranger mask along with other various accoutrements. He's spending the afternoon with me tomorrow while his Mom works. Should be fun.

Added pic: I got NM to recreate the "look" so I could take a pic. Then he spent an hour taking pictures of everything in his house.

What I did during my last work conference call...

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Me: Is that tattoo to remind you that you tend to be grumpy and that you need to try not to be so grumpy?

Jason: No. It's meant as a warning to others.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

If looks could kill

Greta expresses just what she thinks about her new kennel when Jason suggests she try it out.
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bowled peanuts

The Tuesday after the storm we went up to my parent's house, and my Daddy must have been reading my mind because he was wanting boiled (pronounced "bowled" in south Mississippi...(so I'm told)) peanuts as much as I was. He spent about two DAYS boiling the gigantic sack of them that he got, but man o MAN they were good. Wish I had some right now...
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Monday, September 15, 2008

I need a hedgehog!!!!

Don't you think? (I know, I know, Greta would try to eat it).

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I guess this is progress?

Neighborhood pick-me-up

I thought the whole neighborhood could use a pick-me-up, so I made Strawberry cupcakes. I figured they were less-calories because they are strawberry (flavored) and they have fruit on top, so they are healthy, right?

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Blessings and loss

Jason and I are back home. We have power, we have air conditioning. The dogs won't have to stay at a kennel next week. I don't have to go to Dallas.

This week has been a crazy mix of blessings and loss. We are blessed to have the family we have, that our home did not get damaged, that our neighbors are safe despite the tree on their house. We were able to spend a week with my parents. The dogs all got along. Jason helped Mom clean up all the limbs out of the yard.

At the beginning of the week, Jason and I were feeling cautiously optimistic. We were 9 weeks pregnant after many years of trying unsuccessfully. But early Saturday morning I woke up with symptoms that something was very wrong. We went to the emergency room, but things did not turn out well. We aren't pregnant any longer.

I am sad, discouraged, disappointed, scared, heart-broken....a million things. I'm so glad that I was at my parent's house when it happened. They love me and it was nice to have their support along with Jason's. They let me cry, and my Mom made me blueberry pancakes for breakfast this morning.

Last night and today I had several sessions of feeling sorry for myself, and then I looked around my neighborhood at the destruction everywhere and felt guilt for my pity-parties. I'm not ready to write more about it yet, but I decided to post another long entry from my journal from a few months ago that explains some of what's been going on for the last few years. Read it if you want, don't if you don't.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Ok - we found space for the dogs next week at a really nice, brand new animal center in Zachary right down the street from Jason's work. When we called today they already had electricity. Now if we can find a place with power for Jason to crash that would be GREAT. And ideally, we would have power before I come home next Friday...

Safe and Sound, but not @ home

Trees Trees Trees!!!!!! We watched several fall down around us, but thankfully none fell ON us. We have no damage that we can see. We will need to get a roofer to evaluate the roof just to be sure, but from all we could see it looks pretty darn good. (link to new album on right)

We are at my parent's house in Mississippi now. We came up here Tuesday after we heard that we may not have power for 3-4 weeks. We can't stay here that long, obviously (we have to go to work @ some point), but we figured maybe we could at least have power, cable, and internet access while we are trying to figure out what we are going to do.

My parent's have a built-in house generator, and then we got "real" power and cable last night.

The dogs are being pretty good. We are having to keep them separated from Matti but it's going ok so far. No major fights, no major damage, Greta hasn't tried to eat her way through any doors (yet).

Not sure what we will do yet. Entergy restored 9000 people to power last night in Baton Rouge, so we are feeling a little more hopeful today that maybe it WON'T be a month, but who knows. We have to make alternative plans for next week. Jason has to go to work, and I have to go to a conference in Dallas. We have to find a place to board the dogs, we can't leave them in the house with no air conditioner or at least not some way to move air around. Greta would croak.

So if you know of any kennel availability or anyone with space/ love/ patience for babysitting a precious mini schnauzer and a very sweet, entertaining, but high-maintenance giant schnauzer for 5 days, let us know!!