Sunday, December 19, 2010
"I know it’s late – if you don’t use it that’s ok, but I wanted to try to get something to you in case you need it.
I would like to add that this year I lost my Daddy, I lost my friend Randy (ok that was last year but close enough to this year to count), , my first niece was born and was in the NICU for a month, I lost my boss, I lived through the fear of getting a crappy boss, (I ended up getting a great one ;) ), I decided to move in 2-5 years but was offered a transfer quickly, I found a tenant for my Baton Rouge house, I bought a house in Ocean Springs, I lived through the residential lending process, I almost lost the house and ended up living in my car but the deal went through at the last minute, I had my gall bladder removed, I sprained my ankle, my husband had a mass removed from his neck because 3 doctors couldn’t figure out what it was (it turned out to be nothing bad), I had 2 dogs at the LSU vet school at two different times, (one in ICU)………..and I still only ended up taking about 1.5 xanax altogether.
In retrospect, I think maybe I should have taken MORE."
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Friday, December 3, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
"There are so many people to thank that it would take the Pike County phonebook and recite it from A-Z because it takes a great community to nourish and cherish a great artist.
McComb, Mississippi is that community and Roger Lawrence is that artist. We are very fortunate to know both and we thank you all.
We honor Roger Lawrence as he has graced us with a spectacular presence in our collective lives and hearts.
Thank You Roger.
Thank you for the rivers on our walls, the pumpkin in our library, the indian, the Topisaw, the waterfall, the still life writ large in watercolor, oil, tempera, chalk, crayon, and dust.
Thank you for the Bouge Chitto halcyon days where our summers are now reflections on water, glen and glade. Where cypress tree cathedrals conspire with kudzu under cobalt skies and golden suns.
Thank you for the back-beat at The Courtyard dances when our 'Generation' was 'New' and all the rage.
Thank you for opening your studio door that opened our hearts, minds and souls with your gentle words and passions that took fire.
Thank you for teaching our children, our mothers, fathers, sisters and sons; that we too are artists when we follow your lead.
Thank you for the stiple brushes you gave, the splatters and splashes you made with color wheels exploding into space.
But most of all thank you for this hour of bringing us together with your friends whom are not divided by time or age.
Thank You Roger Lawrence for making our world your canvas. Because of you our lives are even more beautiful and true.
Thank You Roger."
-Bill Tyler -
Last night, the town in which I grew up came together to celebrate Roger Lawrence and to help out a friend. Roger is sick, can't paint right now, can't talk without the aid of a computer, and is walking with a walker. The link to the whole story is here: http://www.enterprise-journal.com/news/article_2ff38448-e5d0-11df-9202-001cc4c002e0.html
One thing that amazes me about his art is the variety.
Watercolors in bright colors.
Oil landscapes so real you can feel the cool breezes off the river.
Pointillism portraits of familiar faces.
And the list goes on...http://www.facebook.com/pages/Friends-Of-Roger-Lawrence/123259717696999#!/album.php?aid=14383&id=123259717696999
Friday, November 12, 2010
Udda has a pool! (Thanks for reminding me Kathleen ;) )
They are already settled in Biloxi, so can send us to vets, doctors, hair salons, etc. We won't have to wade through loads of these before we find good ones.
My sister-in-law's grandmother is the oldest practicing attorney in Mississippi. And her brother is a lawyer too. Just in case we get sued for being fabulous.
A new CON also:
The Mississippi Master Gardeners want me to go back through their classes to participate in their volunteer activities, even though I've been a Louisiana Master Gardener for over 5 years. But they only have classes during weekdays. And I work.
I'm super bummed about this. But, maybe it'll be a good break, and I'm sure I'll find other ways to garden and learn and volunteer.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
I love my house
I love my neighborhood
I love my work group
Pros for moving:
My brother & Alex
Easier for my mother to visit us both in one place
My BFF Dale is there
My BFF Charlotte is there
My BCF Holly is there
Closer to other family too, plus I'll have out of town work in Jackson where the rest of my family is.
May have out of town work in Starkville and McComb
New house, with yard and room to garden, modern amenities, possibly a pool (I can't buy that where I want to live in Baton Rouge)
Comfortable, familiar job but in new surroundings, with new people and fresh challenges
I can go to Kaylin's dance recitals, take her to a random movie on a Thursday afternoon, take her to school occasionally, get to know her friends, help her with homework, but still sleep late most mornings ;)
My bean-o loves the beach
Still close enough to NOLA to go do fun stuff there
My brain feels relaxed when looking at giant expanses of water
Fresh start/ perspective/ challenges/ friends/ surroundings for Jason and me
My realtor is cool
And then in October I got a call from the Supervisor in Mississippi that he had a spot for me. And the rest is a whirlwind of trying to figure out logistics and finances and omg I don't do CHANGE well.
I mean, I'm excited, don't get me wrong, but I'm so SETTLED here. I have my nest made. I am comfortable.........yeah maybe TOO comfortable.
Jason and I have never moved together, never bought a house together. I bought the house we live in now before I met him. And I love my house. LOVE it. I can't give it up, so we are going to rent it out. I can't let go....plus I think it is a good move financially because we don't owe much on it and it should be easy to rent out.
And that's where we are at this juncture.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Left Baton Rouge early Wednesday morning. Stressed a little about work, but excited to have some Kaylin time.
Met the realtor in Ocean Springs for our first ride-around. I had only met her once in her office. LOVE her! She's awesome. Fun, she seems to "get" me. We had a blast looking at houses. There are two I did not hate. One I think I would seriously consider IF they came down about $80K HA!!!!
It's an "Ishee" house. Ishee being the Frank Lloyd Wright or A Hayes Town of the Gulf Coast. The house is cool. REALLY cool. Lots of character. And has lots of features I DO like, but...3 features that sort of weird me out.
1> It has a loft over the great room that is only accessible by a little attic-style ladder. It seemed sturdy. I went up the ladder. But...how practical would that be?
2> It has a giant tub IN the master bedroom. Which you get into by walking up three CARPETED stairs. ok um......EWWWWWWWWWW. That has to go. #1 - carpet in general creeps me out completely. And #2 - that's too much nakedness and moisture and humidity in my bedroom kthanks.
3> It has a giant unfinished 2 story garage - bigger than the one we remodeled here. And honestly I don't know WHY this garage gives me anxiety, but it does. It's great storage room. It's great potential pool house in the future. But for some reason it causes me significant concern.
So I think I would want this house if that tub was GONE and replaced by a fantastic master closet, that garage was gone or some sage was burned in it or there was an exorcism in it or something, and of course, if the price was WAY less. I'm not saying I don't think it's worth what they want for it, I just don't have that kind of $. PLUS I'd have to put a pool in myself.
I do love how it's very open in the great room but then has lots of little nooks and crannies. There's room for my piano even.
House #2 is even more promising, but it has a super-tiny plunge pool that, at first, I thought was a good feature but now I'm thinking may be a deal breaker. I want a bigger one. Not huge, but I need to be able to swim a lap. Plus, there's really nowhere for me to have a good studio.
So we keep looking. We aren't in a hurry. I haven't had the precognitive dream I usually have about this sort of huge life-change, so I'm not rushing anything. In the meantime, I'm feeling out the area and it's feeling better and better each time.
She is hilarious and I could just sit and watch her and squeeze her all day long. My brother and Alex are the best, funniest parents of all time. It is so amazing to watch them and see how much they enjoy this little girl.
She goes to bed @ 7pm, and Scot and Alex go to bed @ about 7:15 (hehee) so I left and went to Barnes and Noble to meet my Daley-Dale! On the way I texted Holly (my cuz) and she came by too. We hung out there until they closed @ 9pm (LAME), and then Holly went home and Dale and I went to Waffle house, where we sat until 10:45 peeling crayons and explaining to everybody in the Waffle House why we were peeling crayons. (It was for an art project - Dale teaches art at an elementary school).
Then I met Charlotte for breakfast at Denney's Thursday morning. Charlotte!!!! Whom I haven't seen since, oh.....1979 or something crazy like that (well it feels like that long anyway). She and her hubby are moving to the coast and looking for a house right now TOO. SEE!! I seriously feel that all lines are converging and leading me to the Mississippi Coast. But I'm taking it slow.
I have no doubt that things will all fall into place when they are supposed to.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
And I don't care. I'll deal with that as long as I need to. As long as he's still enjoying lying in the sun, sleeping next to us at night, playing with his toys, and getting excited about breakfast and dinner, I'll carry him where ever he wants to go.
Happy Birthday Bean-o! You're my #1 little buddy!!
I am so thankful that the vet @ the EBRP shelter took the time to call giant schnauzer rescue multiple times to get in touch with us. She belongs here with us.
P.S. Jason and I went to see Jamie Wax's "Goin' to Jackson" several years ago. We loved it. The "Butt Cheeks" reference is from that play. If you haven't seen it, do.
Friday, September 24, 2010
Saturday, September 18, 2010
I have just been down lately. It's been a tough year. There is so much I am thankful for, but things I'm sad about too. My Dad. Being far from family. Being 41. Watching my husband struggle with his own depression at times. And sometimes the sadness kind of bunches up on me. And then I get pictures like this of my niece, and the world seems right again:
Sunday, September 12, 2010
I have also determined that there is some sort of critter living in the walls up here. I'm having flashbacks to Dooce.com's post about the crazed racoons/ airbombing squirrels/ weird random cats living in her new house...
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
I don't really WANT to do anything...know what I mean? When I wake up in the morning, there's nothing that I'm excited about doing. Does anyone else go through times like this?
I have good ideas of what I wish I wanted to do.
I wish I wanted to write on my blog, but I don't have the words.
I wish I wanted to work on my garden, but it's too hot.
I wish I wanted to want to fix/redo/spruce up my house, but I don't know where to start, I don't want to spend any money, and....it's too hot.
I wish I wanted to paint. Well, I always want to want to paint but that's rare even in good times.
Part of it, I know, is that I haven't felt good. I sprained my ankle at the beginning of July (end of June?) and I haven't gotten back to my walks. I haven't been eating what I know I should be eating. I haven't been taking all my medication as prescribed. So yeah, it's my own fault.
So I should just suck it up, get with the program, do what I need to do. Wake up in the morning and do it. And the motivation will come back, right?
And now that I've confessed my supreme laziness and patheticness, perhaps I will be embarrassed back in to living like I'm supposed to.
And if Mr. Weather could bring us a couple of days of less than 1000 degrees, that would be helpful too.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
I'm totally psychic.
Today I played around with it. Love it! It's kind of like a spirograph with a blade. Which makes me want a spirograph. And it also makes me want a LARGE circle cutter. This only cuts circles up to 6 inches. Which is fine for starters.
Friday, August 6, 2010
ON THE BEACH (Nevil Shute) - What would you do if you knew all the bombs, the rest of the world was over, and you were just waiting around for the end? I love a good apocalyptic book. I know, weird, but I just do. 99% of these are survivor stories though. You know - there's a handful of survivors and they are huddled together trying to defend their remaining soup cans from
THE EDIBLE WOMAN (Margaret Atwood) - I think I would have had a completely different experience reading this book had I not read it directly after ON THE BEACH. I kept overlaying the premise of ON THE BEACH on the plot of THE EDIBLE WOMAN. And how would we feel about gender roles and getting married and trying to create a "normal" life if the bombs had all been dropped. So yeah - given that in my brain, the protagonist was trying to decide what she wanted to do with her life and sort of going crazy at the end of the world...it was great.
WHITE TIGER (Aravind Adiga) - I did not expect the ending here. It was good. Kind of Kite-Runner-ish but about India.
ALICE IN WONDERLAND - Movie hype got me thinking that I had never actually read the books. So I did. They were like .99cents on the Kindle.
NO ONE WOULD LISTEN - The Bernie Madoff case. And WOW this was interesting to me. The guy that wrote the book was in the same business as Madoff and realized YEARS prior that something was fishy. Tried multiple times to alert the SEC and they ignored him. I love stuff like this. The writing was not annoying, and it wasn't overly complicated. I think that most anyone could read it and understand what happened even though the mechanics of hedge funds are mind boggling.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
So yeah Lolita. Whatever. In the days of Elizabeth Smart and Jaycee whatshername that was kidnapped and found 17 years later Lolita is not all that shocking.
CLOUD ATLAS - Wow I really liked this. It was just good. And different. The whole a-butterfly-flaps-his-wings-and-500-years-later kind of thing. This is one I can actually see myself re-reading. And I never re-read books. Well.....very rarely.
And then, at about this point in the year, I lost my Dad. And then in order to cope, I lost myself in books. It's a comfort. An escape. A reminder of the blessings I do have. So I re-read THE COLOUR OF MAGIC. The 1st book in the Pratchett Discworld series. May seem inappropriate, but I knew it would make me smile, and I knew I wouldn't have to think. So it helped me through the first few days of February.
BELOVED (Toni Morrison) - Again, I just wanted to know what the hype was. And wow I was blown away. Beautiful writing. VERY surprising story. I honestly never expected either (the writing or the story). Who'd have expected supernatural occurrences in an Oprah book?
RAINBOW'S END - Ugh. It wasn't bad, but it was just sort of blah. And yet for some reason it has stuck in my head like a bad song. When I'm taking my morning walk, it sneaks up on me and all of a sudden I'm visualizing all the data I'd be bombarded with if I was "wearing".
IN THE SANCTUARY OF THE OUTCASTS - Note to self: I need to write a blog entry about my experiences @ Carville (and also the word DisEase). This is a book that was written by a guy who was in the minimum security prison at Carville at the time when half of the facility was the prison and half was still the Hanson's Disease Center. Hanson's Disease used to be called Leprosy. I have been out to Carville many times over the years to work in their credit union. It is one of the most amazing places on earth. There are several books written by patients - this one is from a different perspective. I totally get it.
ALREADY DEAD: A NOVEL - Jason had this downloaded on the Kindle so I read it. I'm sick of vampires. Sick.
MARCH (Geraldine Brooks) - Great book. Pulitzer winner 2005. Remember the March sisters from Little Women? Remember that their Dad was off to war? Will this book from HIS perspective. His commitment to the Civil War and the sad consequences of having too much pride.
ok I think that's all through about....Feb? Mar? Sometime around there.
Here's what I read up until the summer:
THE YEAR OF THE FLOOD (Margaret Atwood) - Atwood is growing on me. This one was actually pretty good, although being the nosy investigator that I am, I want to know what happened and why. This is a post-apocalyptic book. Really good. But I wanted more about the actually apocalypse I guess. I'm morbid that way.
THE CORRECTIONS ( Jonathon Franzen) - ok Franzen must be a supercool guy, right? Because David Foster Wallace was his BFF or something. And Wallace couldn't put up with just any random dumbass. And yeah, Franzen's writing style is fine. Unmemorable which is good, at least it didn't annoy me. But I don't really get they hype over this story. I didn't find it any different than the 100 stories written in that "stories of american life and poor us and our 1st world problems" John Updike / Philip Roth genre. Maybe I missed something.
MY NEW ORLEANS (essays by various authors) - I actually turned down some pages to which I could refer back. I liked some of the thoughts presented here. As with any multi-author collection, I liked some and didn't like others. Worth reading.
AMERICAN GODS - I like Neil Gaiman a lot. For some reason, I can't read his stuff back-to-back. This was the first novel of his I'd read in awhile. It was probably my favorite. If you are fan of any sort of mythology, this is one you'd get a kick from.
THE HELP - yeah yeah sometimes I get caught up in the hype of the day. This was a good one though. I can never remember character names but that one woman - you know which one I mean - is a BE-YOTCH. And so is Karma. She'll get hers.
WHY I LIVE @ THE P.O & OTHER STORIES (Eudora Welty) - Although I love Eudora Welty as much as the next Mississippi girl, her writing is not actually something I've ever just easily picked up on a whim. However, I've always wondered just WHY this woman did live at the P.O.? And so a while back, I read Mississippi Sissy. I wrote a blurb about it on this blog previously. And Mississippi Sissy made me think of Eudora Welty in a whole new way. I way that involved bourbon. So when I saw this one on the bookshelf I picked it up. And now I know why the woman lived in the P.O. And yeah, it's pretty funny.
AMERICAN PASTORAL (Philip Roth) - I was thinking this was the 70's version of The Corrections, but actually, it was a way better story with some craziness and intrigue and murder and heartbreak. Glad I read it.
UNSEEN ACADEMICALS (Terry Pratchett) - It's Terry Pratchett. I laughed. That's all I need to say about this one.
THE MOVIEGOER (Walker Percy) - ok I'm glad I read it just because it's a local guy and whatever. And yeah - I read a lot too and probably don't interact one on one with people more than I have to. Sue me.
OK that does it for 2009.
Monday, August 2, 2010
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
We agreed they SUCKED, but couldn't exactly decide why.
This (not surprisingly) led to a jaunt to the grocery store where we obtained additional mini Oreos, along with regular and doublestuffs for comparison's sake.
Returning with our bounty of chocolatey goodness, we were able to draft the assistance of my chemist husband. Experiments and documentation ensued.
And what resulted was, perhaps, the best letter ever written to a corporation. And which remained unsent, lost, and languishing in an electronic hell for 10 years.
Charlotte FOUND THE LETTER. And now, as my birthday present to you all, I will share. And hell yes, I'm sending it to Nabisco tonight too.
Baton Rouge, LA 70809
October 17, 2000
Thank you very much for making the new "Mini Oreo Bite Size.” It is a great idea. However, something in the new cookie just isn't right.
We had a theory that there was not the proper ratio of creme filling to cookie. We measured and calculated the ratio of creme filling to cookie for each of the regular, doublestuff, and mini Oreos.
First, let me say that we were thrilled to discover that indeed, the ratio of the filling to cookie in the DoubleStuff Oreos was, in fact, double that of regular Oreos. However, this test proved our theory wrong, as the ratio of filling to cookie of the mini Oreos falls in between that of regular and doublestuff Oreos. (See attached spreadsheet.)
That has led us to the following alternative theories:
1> These cookies seem crispier, perhaps “scorched”? Perhaps the small size of each wafer calls a lower cooking temperature, or shorter cooking time.
2> The concentration of cocoa in each cookie could be off? These cookies appear a smidge darker, but we did not have any Erlenmeyer Flasks with which to conduct cocoa content analysis.
3> We observed that the diameter of the creme filling in the mini Oreos can fluctuate between 2cm, and 2.2cm, which leaves almost no "lip of wafer" on which to rest America's favorite creme filling. The "lip of wafer" is a very important part of the whole Oreo experience. Without a proper lip, it is very difficult to properly separate a wafer from the creme filling (for ease of dunking, and similar).
Although our tests were inconclusive, we would still like to express our impression that the overly chocolate taste of the cookie wafers overwhelms the creme filling in the new mini Oreos. We feel that some adjustment should be made to make the taste of the mini Oreos more pleasing. Thank you very much for your consideration.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
My dream is to have a lap pool.....
BUT...For those of you who haven't been to my house, I have NO yard. My lot is 120 ft. / 40 ft. On this lot, I have a driveway that is 100 ft. long, a house, a 2 story detached double garage, a pergola, and a large deck. And an entry garden. The only place I could put a "real" pool it in the driveway.
Which I suppose is not too practical.
I have been swimming about 50 times so far. I feel better already. I'm sure my vitamin D level is up. This morning I spent about 2 hours out there reading. This pool cost us $70. It took about an hour to set up (a few hours to fill). And it may just change my life.