Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Quarter of a Century

A quarter of a centry ago, I was a different person.

I never left the house without make up, my hair fixed or without being dressed to the nines.

I was never late; I was never unprepared, I was never paniced.

But all that changed a quarter of a century ago today, at 8:28 a.m. Central time.

I gave birth to this little girl...

...and my life changed forever.
Happy Birthday Julz!
I hope today is filled with love, happiness, and limitless potential!
~ Mom

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

A Middle Eastern Flair

Because of the second round of storms, my office let us all go at 2:30 p.m. so that everyone would be out of harms way when the storms blew in.  With that extra time on my hands, I decided to try my hand at a simple Middle Eastern dish.

On tonight's menu is Kima (also known as curried beef), paired with roasted squash and broccoli. A glass of sangria rounded out the meal. The fruity wine was the perfect compliment to this spicy Pakistani dish.

You can find the basic recipe here.

I have become a fan lately of roasted vegetables. I can prepare them and pop them into the oven and they cook while I prepare the main course. I coat them with a little olive oil, garlic, oregano and red pepper and then cook them about 25 minutes at 350.

The kima, took a little prep before I was able to start cooking it. I measured out all the spices into a prep bowl, reconstituted the minced onions in another, and opened the can of diced tomatoes (a chore I prefer to leave to the professionals). 

My recipe called for much more curry, which I cut by half, and was very glad that I did. I can handle spicy food pretty well, but I can not imagine how volcanic this dish would have been had I followed the recipe to the letter! My mouth is still on fire nearly an hour later.

I used ground turkey, instead of beef, because there is less shrink, and also used black-eyed peas instead of English peas, simply because I can't stand English peas. I don't think it made much difference in the taste.  My recipe called for brown rice, but all I had was instant white rice. Once mixed in, I don't think you could tell much difference because the texture is pretty much the same.

As it cooked, it smelled heavenly!

But one pound of ground turkey went a very long way, so I will be carrying this for lunch and sharing it with some of my friends.

The only downside is that the curry stained everything it touched. My pan, prep bowl, and plate are currently soaking in the sink!

It was very tasty, and super easy to make. Next time, I bet it can do it from memory.


DING: End of Round One

Last night was probably the first really scary storm front of the season.

And I made it through with my sanity intact. Mother says it was because I had a plan and was prepared.  Whatever the case, it was a long and harrowing night.

Being prepared , even days in advance, still does not prepare one for the unknown.

When reports of storm damage in Mississippi started coming in late Monday afternoon, I worried for L/G, who was out on the road. All predictors showed the storm line passing through the state, beginning in Jackson. Not being able to get  him on the phone had me somewhat paniced.  Being in communications, he has the best of the best as far as a cell phone is concerned. But even the best cell phone is only as good as the tower it's pinging from. He finally  texted me: "In (CTown) sunny skies here. Stay Safe."  Not being familiar with locations in Mississippi, as I am with Alabama,  is proving to be a challenge. When he says, "I will be in This Town/County today" I have to go Google it. I could not imagine where (CTown) was, because all the pictures I was seeing had nearly the entire state covered in yellow and red.

I had told him that I was going to Mother's, where they had a storm shelter built in the basement.  He thought that was a good idea, and was glad I would be somewhere safe.  In the end, I did not go. (L/G if you are reading this today, I am sorry for that little bit of dishonesty)

Mother and I discussed the fact that A) if something happened at my house, I would kinda need to be there to make sure things were secure and B) what if things got bad at Mother's but were fine at my house? We decided that I should just stay put.  I occupied my time with feel-good movies like Driving Miss Daisy, The Sandlot, and Because of Winn Dixie to take my mind off the growing threat.

My cousin had posted some emergency weather tips on her Facebook page. Helpful little things like

1) put your tennis shoes on before things get bad
2) put your car keys, your cell phone (fully charged, of course) and your drivers license in your pocket
3) put your prescriptions and anything else important, in a fanny pack and wear it
4) wear bright colored clothing to aid rescuers in finding you
5) wear a whistle for the same reason
6) wear a bike helmet to protect your head from blowing debris

the list of good ideas goes on and on

I put on the a yellow March of Dimes tee shirt and the brightest pants I could find: a pair of bright green Mountain Dew themed pajama pants. I put my pocket sized flashlight and my cell phone (fully charged, thank you Mother) in the deep pockets. I hung my coaches whistle around my neck I put my prescriptions, my important papers, and my good jewelry all in a large fanny pack, that I bought specifically for this reason (though I didn't have it on when an actual tornado hit my neighborhood...imagine that) many years ago. I threw all the pillows I could find in the house, into the hallway and sat down to wait.

As things progressed, I followed posts of my friends on Facebook. I know, I know. not the most reliable weather info, but I have one life-long friend, Wilson, who is an amatuer meteorologist. He was the James Spann of our class.   Between that and the live streaming feed from the local news affiliate, i felt well informed.

My brother posted about having helmets for rent, and posted pictures of even Shelby The Supercat wearing one.  Always lighthearted and joking, even in the most serious situations. I am thankful to have a brother like that.

A weather alert that the Chief must have set on my phone back when I first got it, went off and scared ten years off my life. I know that some of my posts worried my out of state/out of the South friends. I know that I had two Oregonians praying dilligently.  The whole ordeal was testing my angina meds.

When the threat was over sometime after midnite, I felt like I could go to sleep and still get somewhere around 4 hours of sleep.


The wind began to howl and I could hear what remained of the three oak trees wipping around furiously. The house shook with each huge gust. At one point, the cat door between the garage and the kitchen flapped open and shut. I know it wasn't either of the cats, as both were buried underneath me on the couch.  For the next two hours the wind assaulted the house, and I was unable to sleep.

When I finally did doze off,  I could only sleep for two and a half hours and then had to get up for work. I woke with a jolt at 5:00 a.m.

So I sit here in my office, blearily staring at this screen. I am clean but not as perky as I usually am.  There is not enough coffee in this entire building to combat the fatigue I am battling, though our Marketing team has offered to make everyone in the office espresso shots, so it's a start.

And today, we brace for Round Two.

Stay Safe.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Weekend Experiments

Well this past weekend was a weekend full of experiments.

It started off with my cardiologist adding a new medicine to my already ridiculous prescription regime. Six pills a day...yea me! So now I have yet another pill to keep up with. I take the new pill once a day, so I am taking it with my breakfast along with the others.

New pill
The past few days I've been quite the space cadet.  There was a sticker on the bottle to avoid operating heavy equipment because it may cause drowsiness, but there was nothing about causing stupidity. I assume that a car qualifies as "heavy equipment" but it was necessary to drive it to get to the park.  It was just a short distance and I made it fine.
My day at the Miracle League park was beautiful!
"Miracle Mary", our director, broke her foot sometime last week and can't drive.  For about an hour, I was afraid I was going to be in charge. Not a good choice for my current space cadet status.  But thankfully, Pappa Smurf was able to bring her out to the park and she hardly slowed down. She tooled around on her knee-scooter and was into everything as usual.
We got a new volunteer, who was really interesting. A really nice (and hot) Irish fella from New York City. Salt and pepper hair, clear blue eyes with just a tinge of green around the edges, forty, slim, athletic build.  His Yankee accent was reminded me of Ray Liotta in Good Fellas. His reason for coming into town was somewhat vague and mysterious. He had played college baseball. He saw the field and told his family, a local family who I have known for many years, that he wanted to be a part of "the Miracle." He hung around and watched the games, just to see how we did things.
 I was able to talk to him on and off throughout the day. He told me how he played Division 2 baseball and bartended to get through college. How he had been here about 2 weeks and had sent out resumes to find a job. His specialty was customer service (no kidding) and marketing. Mary asked him if he could coach for one of our teams, to take over for another coach who had to drop out. He agreed. I handed over the jersey. Talk about jumping in with both feet!
My plans for Saturday night unfortunately fell through, but were quickly replaced by an invitation from Miracle Mary. I went to an early dinner at Logan's with her family, Pitcher Dan (our pitcher) and two players, Tom and Jennifer. We had a marvelous time!  
Sunday, I could feel the storm front moving in and all my joints stiffen. I was too miserable to move and thus skipped church.  I watched  a collection of movies I had borrowed from my brother and Cyn.
Around 4-ish, I decided to cook. Not really having a plan, I just saw what I had available and went from there.  The result was an experiment, but tasty just the same.

I talked to L/G very briefly. Still trying to nail down a weekend for his visit, but May has five to choose from. The OCD has kicked in, and I am finding all sorts of things wrong with the house itself that I am wondering if he will notice.
I nodded of very early, and woke to the music of the battle scenes from Troy playing over and over again as the menu sequence played.
And I start today, like any other Monday: waiting for the weekend.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Finally Friday!

I thought this week would never be over!

Later y'all ...

Rollin' (Air Raid Vehicle) ~ Limp Bizkit - 2000
(Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

On Tonight's Menu...


Breaded Salmon Filet with ginger sauce
 (gluten free of course...thank you Rice Chex!)
Roasted Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts and Asparagus with Bacon!
I LOVE that I can make favorite recipes with a gluten-free alternative.
I was so happy when I found that you can use crushed Rice Chex for just about any breading.
Seriously, you can not tell the difference!
I dip the salmon filet in an egg wash and dredge it in a bowl of crushed Rice Chex, seasoned with salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic flakes.
I was really excited when I saw the recipe for these roasted vegetables (with BACON!!) on Pinterest. I  never could make anything like this before, because I was the only person in the house who would eat Brussels spouts.
I added the asparagus because I wanted to use the last of what I had before it went bad. It turned out great! 
I washed it all down with a lemon-drop, because I could

3 Years Ago ...

Three years ago this week, I was shaken, but extremely grateful.

We had just been through a tornado.

I had never been more afraid in my life.
My house was damaged, but still standing.
My husband was injured, but alive.

And as the next weeks would unfold, people buried their loved ones, my family was whole. People in cities all around us, lived in tents, sifting through the ashes of their lives, I had more than enough.

I was never more thankful to God than I was then.

A reminder of that day is still in my back yard. I see it every day.
The random mystery tree, tangled up in the trees outside the kitchen window.
Still immovable.
My life has changed, but that one thing is constant.
And comforting.
A reminder that God had spared us for other things.
Now find out what

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Easter 2014

Had a wonderful Easter Sunday! The weather could not have been better!

I dashed out Saturday afternoon at the very last minute to buy my Easter dress. I found this great navy dress at Cato (full price $29.99 = frown...see what I mean about paying more when I'm unprepared)  but it was a size SIX so that made up for it. My "Easter bonnet" you may recognize from last year's Easter outfit. 

I went to church with Mother. The 8:30 a.m. service (groan) It is always decorated so nice  From the floral Easter cross out front...
to the Easter baskets on the entrance doors....

everything was beautiful and welcoming.
This year, instead of the traditional Easter lilies, the memorial flowers were mulitcolored hydrangeas. Their varied and colorful blooms were just the right touch.

After church, we had lunch at the Irondale Cafe. Now some of you may know that the Irondale Cafe is the basis of Fannie Flagg's book "Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe."  According to the Birmingham News, the Irondale Cafe is among the top ten places for Easter lunch! And when I arrived, it was obviously true. At 11:00 a.m. the line snaked out the door and around the corner!  Of course, I was having the fried green tomatoes, a menu staple, regardless of how they were breaded. Gluten be damned! But the line moved quickly and we were seated in one of the newly acquired dining spaces.

Kit-Kat overslept and missed the event, but Julz and her new beau, David, met us there for lunch.  Because he was meeting us for the first time, he brought me and my mother flowers.  Nice touch.

"It was his idea!" Julz had squealed.

He was tall and very handsome, dressed in a nice suit. I learned that he owned his own business, which prompted me to ask his age: an eyebrow raising 31.

Though only six years older than Julz, there is still something that sounds so old and mature about 31.  I later learned that his oldest sibling was my age. My mother turned to look at me, eyes wide, her expression saying "what do you think of THAT?!"

He too appeared to have been in the habit of treating the ladies in his life with good manners and respect.  He reached for her tray to carry it for her, but the waitress in her took over, and she took his instead. I noticed that he pulled out her chair for her.

We took these photos after lunch at the train platform across from the cafe.

Many other families followed suit. My Facebook was filled with similar photos of all my friends' families in the exact same spot.

I still had a great deal of the day left after lunch. Benefit of being the early bird.

I called L/G, who was home from the first week of his project. Fourteen schools. About 200 more to go.  But the project brings him close enough to home this week for him to sleep in his own bed.  We talked about the week's challenges and what we did to overcome them.  He is better at that than me.

"Can you control that?" speaking directly to the Control Freak in me, "If you can control it, then change it. If not, let it go." Easier said that done.  He reminded me that it could be done. My visit had proved that.

His philosphy is to live in a drama-free bubble: don't create drama where there isn't any; don't invite it into your life; and to hell with those who try to bring it into your life.  I laughed. I would say I am The Drama Queen, but that most definately is my grandmother. I am just a Drama Princess comparitively. He told me that he hasn't met a woman yet who didn't have some level of drama. Indeed.

He reminded me once again to let drama go,  then wished me a good week and was off to work on the boat.

Oh, I forgot about the boat. He enjoys woodworking. He has made a few pieces of furniture and is currently building a 16 foot canoe in his garage. Yeah, kinda like Gibbs from NCIS.  It is impressive. Most guys wouldn't even know where to start. He had explained how each board must be shaped and glued and clamped down to the board underneath and then sit to cure.  Eventually he will fiberglass it and it will be ready to paddle around the Rez. 

Maybe I will get to go too.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Back to the Rat Race

With his big work project looming in the very near future, Saturday evening with L/G was a quiet night watching movies.

And just who would be a perfect match for a woman who doesn't like to cook?


The fritatta that morning had been a pleasant surprise but I didn't really question it. I mean what bachelor doesn't know how to make ONE fancy dish, right?

But dinner was a diffrent story. He made stir-fried rice and shrimp with sauteed asparagus. 

He had all the right pans, including a WOK! He had all the right utensils.

He even had ghee, that he had made himself.

He wouldn't let me do anything. I watched from the doorway, amazed.

Add a little white wine, and dinner was served.

Sunday morning came quickly.  L/G made me  bacon and eggs with grits and fresh fruit drizzled in honey.  We discussed the benefits of ice cold chocolate milk.

I packed for home; he packed for his trip. 
We discussed what happens next.

I had not planned to leave until 3:00pm, but a text from Julz sped things up: "Where Are You?!"

I texted back", you KNOW where I am..."

Smart Retort: "Don't be smart. We are broke down on the interstate"


"Leaving now. Keep me informed"

I rushed my goodbye. He told me to call him when I made it home.

I was almost two hours away from where Julz and Twin G, wife, and baby, were stranded on the interstate just outside of Meridian MS. I would have to drive right by them.

As I drove toward them, I thought about how in just two days, L/G had treated me better than I had been treated in the last two years (maybe more) of my marriage. A man that had promised before God to share my life and love, raise a family together, yet took me for granted, and in the end. just threw me away like I was nothing.  L/G, on the other hand. barely knew me, yet, he opened his home to me, cooked for me, thought of things that would entertain me, and expected nothing in return. A true gentleman, in every sense of the word.

I made it into Meridian about the same time that the text came that my former in-laws had arrived on the scene, as did the tow-truck and Julz and the Twin G family were safe.  I offered to venture off the interstate to retrieve her and bring her home, but she declined.  Her new beau was already en route.

So I was free to go back to the rat race.

As I drove back into town, I drove with a new found peace.  L/G had done his best to make sure my visit was drama free.  He was decisive, analytical and logical. Everything had been planned out and executed to a tee.I didn't have to lift a finger. A truly relaxing weekend.

 As I came in, the cats were happy to see me. They fought for a spot in my lap. I called L/G, who was glad that I made it home safe and made it in really good time.  So nice to have someone who cares. We discussed his upcoming visit and all the logistics. 

Something to look forward to - I can hardly wait!

Until then...

~En-JOY reading!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Lunch at Brent's

I only had one must-do item on my visit to Jackson: Have a burger at Brent's Drugs.

Opened in 1946 by Dr. Alvin Brent, this business soon became a Jackson icon.  It is also the setting for the diner scenes in the movie, "The Help."

L/G indulged me, and after touring some of the quaint bedroom neighborhoods, we stopped by for lunch.

The interior was an interesting mix of new and old. Booths and tables in turquoise and white. Memorabilia lined the walls. The staff was equally as eclectic.  The place was packed. We took a seat at the empty book of the end.

They were very busy. The staff was somewhat stressed. They were out of cups an silverware. Two young mothers with their young children, a boy about 18 months and a girl about 3, sat down in the booth next to us.  The little girl kept making eyes at L/G over the divider between our booths. I couldn't blame her.  He is very handsome and he was all too happy to flirt back with her.

While waiting we found The Apothecary in the back, the newest edition to Jackson's night life.

The waitress didn't even blink when I ordered my burger without the bun. I ordered a side order of fries. L/G ordered the cheeseburger.  The burger was a pretty typical diner burger.

After lunch L/G took my photo
Here are a few shots from the movie for comparison
We were down here on the end in the last booth
 (to be continued)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Bold Adventurer Succeeds the Best

"The bold adventurer succeeds the best" ~ Ovid

With an invitation, and an open mind and heart, I set my course.

After a four hour drive (and not getting lost once = score!) I made it to the Mississippi home of my friend. Meanwhile, Julz was making her way to the Mississippi Gulf coast, with the former in-laws for the wedding of Twin B. That will play into the story later.

The Lifeguard was happy to see me and that I had made it safe. He was every bit as handsome as I had remembered. He said that my pictures on Facebook had not done me justice.

After settling in,  and a short drive around the Ross Barnett Reservoir , we decided on dinner at a local Asian restaurant.

As someone who was no longer used to a man opening doors for me, I was unaccustomed to that, and other kindnesses L/G was showing to me. He wanted to treat me like a lady should be treated, and it was obvious that it was his habit. I have been a "fend for myself" girl for as long as I can remember. I had never been out with anyone like this before. It was nice, even for a control freak like me.

After getting out of the truck myself, L/G gently reminded me that he would get the restaurant door for me. Remembering my gluten issue, he quizzed me on foods I could eat and what to avoid. Traditional Asian cuisine is to be eaten family style, small servings from larger plates. He not only ordered our dinner, he plated my food and served it to me. Wow,  girl could get used to this.

We talked about our work and his big project. Our waitress was the wife of one of his team members, so the service was excellent.  As we made our way back to his truck, he complimented me on how cute I looked. I never quite knew how to take a compliment, simply because I would get them so rarely. I did manage to remember to say "thank you." I was wearing my favorite "Angels and Diamonds" tee shirt and black dress pants. I had forgotten to put on my heels, still in the back seat of my car, so I was wearing the rhinestone flip-flops that I drove over wearing. We drove back through the bustling shopping area to L/G's home. As we passed both a Waffle House and a Walmart, I couldn't help but think things would be okay.

Back at his home, he showed me to my room. I changed into my lounging clothes, a Championship tee shirt and shorts. Over a few cocktails we continued our conversation that we had started at dinner. We talked about our children.  His son is also in his twenties. He showed me a photo of him, playing guitar. We could have easily talked late into the night, but after my long drive and with a big day ahead, we retired.  The bed, that I later learned was brand new, was very comfy.

The next morning I was greeted with fresh fruit and a frittata.

After running a few errands...

It was off to see a few sights.

There was a community Easter Egg Hunt going on so the grounds were crawling with little kids!

 L/G enjoys photography, a shared interest of mine.

 He carried his infrared camera, that makes everything that is green appear white in the photo.  He shot several of the same photos I have taken here. Like this one

He also took this picture of me with the enormous azaleas they had growing there.

 (to be continued...)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Nothing Ventured

It's time for the weekend recap. But to tell this story properly, I need to give a little background.

The summer of 1987, my mother carried my brother and me to a resort in Fort Walton Beach. We spent nearly a week there. This was an annual trip for us and we always enjoyed the resort. Laying out on the pool deck, my brother skateboarding all over the complex, touristy attractions within walking distance. And of course, the sugar-white sands of a Gulf of Mexico beach. Paradise just 4 hours from home.

On my second day there, while strolling on the beach, I met the two beach lifeguards on duty. Being a community lifeguard myself, we had some common ground to start a conversation. And that kids, is how I met your father.  Just Kidding. 

But, that is really where this story begins. On a beach, in 1987.  And this guy. Let's call him The Lifeguard, or L/G for short.
Flash Forward: Through the modern marvel that is Facebook, we reconnected some years back.  I told him about my family; he told me about his. Very similar stories: Marriages, divorces, children, step-children. We had both enjoyed photography, a common intrerest so long ago, but L/G had pursued it more seriously. His Facebook was filled with photos he had taken of the things around him and places he had been.  We would chat from time to time. I would post pics of my family, he would post pics of him and his girlfriend on vacation.  Once, when he was between girlfriends, I had tried to fix him up with one of my pageant friends who also lived in his area, but it didn't work out. I had told her that if I were single myself, I'd be on him like white on rice. That was the really the last time I had "talked" to him.
I'm not sure when he disappeared from Facebook, maybe a year or so ago.  But he reappeared a few weeks ago. Around his birthday. I sent him a birthday wish (don't you love Facebook?!)  And when he reappeared again, all signs of the current girlfriend were gone.
Time to step off the sideline.
I send him a PM. I tell him what has been going on. L/G tells me what has been going on. We both agree we are better off.
We chat back and forth over the next several days. He tells me about a big project at work that his is starting.  I tell him about some childish drama unfolding on  my end. He suggests that I get away from it all. He invites me to come stay with him for the weekend.  He's got the room. He'd enjoy the company. I'd have my own bedroom and bathroom. 
One of my favorite movies was filmed in his town. There is historical interest. Why not?
(To be continued...)

Friday, April 11, 2014

Working For The Weekend

Wow! Busy weekend ahead. Too busy to even blog about it.

I will try and post pics later

Meanwhile....and oldie, but a goodie

Working For the Weekend~ ( Live -Vancouver Expo 1986)
 From Get Lucky  - Loverboy

Thursday, April 10, 2014

"Rock of Ages" Probably Better as a Play

So last night I purchased "Rock of Ages" from the $5 DVD bin at Walmart.

Thank goodness I only paid $5 for it.

If I had actually gone and seen it the then we would have paid at least $10 each, plus that overpriced popcorn (that is really good if its fresh) and a drink.

The story was pretty good, easy to follow and the music would have been PHENOMENAL had it not been performed by non-musicians.  A good mix of music from across the rock genre and some pretty interesting mash-ups.

But I can say now that I know all the words to "Paradise City" because Tom Cruise enunciates them all so well where Axel just kinda slurred them.  It was kinda weird when you see your favorite actors suddenly break out in song.  It was kinda like karaoke night down down on the Sunset Strip.

Cameo appearances from the final climatic street scene included Sebastian Bach,  Debbie (or is that Deborah?)  Gibson and Kevin Cronin wearing a REO Speedwagon t-shirt. Talk about self-promotion.

I am sure "Rock of Ages" was much better as a Broadway play, and that it what the movie producers were probably thinking when it was all said and done.

As part of the special features is a clip of Def Leppard performing "Rock of Ages" and "Pour Some Sugar on Me" at the premier.  I had to laugh because suddenly Def Leppard doesn't quite sound like Def Leppard anymore. All in their fifties now, the years of singing in falsetto have taken a toll.  And who knew lead guitarist Phil Collen, the band's oldest member at 56, has a rocking body! Honey, if my abs looked like, that I'd go shirtless all the time too! 

I have caught myself humming 80's rock songs since waking this morning, but none more so than this one.

A old favorite

More Than Words ~ Extreme
Extreme II: Pornograffitti (A Funked Up Fairy Tale) 1990 (A&M)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


I know this is where I usually share my Weekly What I Wore but I've been sort of unispired of late.

But you can still take a look at some of the other interesting, inspired, thrifty,  fashionistas over here at The Pleated Poppy.

I haven't really felt like shopping for new clothes in my new smaller size. The size 8 dress pants I just bought no longer fit anymore. A coworker commented, just yesterday, about them falling off of me when I walk. But I'm afraid to buy any more until I "settle". I know that I will never be a size two, but why be stuck with a closet full of clothes I can't wear? I've already had to deal with that once this quarter.

So for now, I am suspending my Weekly What I Wore Wednesdays until things level off.

Long Cool Woman - The Hollies (Distant Light Epic Records) 1972


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Now Serving....

Gluten-Free Salmon Croquettes
Rice and Steamed Vegetables
The secret is Rice Chex!
I pulverized Rice Chex and replaced the flour in the normal croquette recipe.
It tastes great!

Intermission...You Know, When You Take A Break from the Main Event?

I guess by now you've noticed that when I'm bored, or have nothing new to say, I post music videos.

That being said, this intermission is brought to you by

Our Lady, PINK

First, a favorite

Don't Let Me Get Me - Missundaztood 2002 (Arista)

Then there is this one (snicker)

U + Ur Hand - I'm Not Dead 2006 (Laface -Zomba)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Lovely Lakeside View

...only this is not a lake. This is the street in front of my house, draining into the lot across the street.

Pray for Central Alabama, currently facing record flooding.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Great Day!

I had the best time at Opening Day!

It was so great to see all our players today, as well as meet the new ones.

Miss Mary signed up several new players and they are all precious, especially the little ones!

I came home beat and burnt! I can barely move enough to type this.

Oh and an even brighter note, someone thinks that I am worth crossing the state line for! How do you meet someone nearly 30 years ago and make such an impression on them, that they never forget you? I wouldn't let him, of course, because I had so much to do today, but the fact that he was willing to do so and all the prospects that brings, is nothing short of thrilling!

Can't wait to see where that goes.

Another blog buddy to nickname...LOL!

Until then,


Friday, April 4, 2014

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Yep....tomorrow is opening day at Moody's Miracle League!

The Miracle League is a baseball organization for individuals with special needs. We are all winners! Everyone gets a homerun and all games end in a tie. Baseball as it was meant to be....FUN!

I look forward to ball season at Miracle Field One all year long. No where else on earth do I experience unconditional love in it's purest form!  It didn't matter what crap I had going on at the office. It didn't matter what crap was going on at home. I know that I could step out on that field and the people are genuinely happy to see me. Tomorrow, I know that they will all embrace me, and I will truly be loved. Not  for any material things I can buy them, or what I can do to cater to their whims, or because I'm shelling out money.  They really love me, just for being there.

Tomorrow I will begin my ninth season with this organization.

Wanna be blessed beyond measure? Check out a Miracle League near you.  Trust me, if you only volunteer once and you will be hooked for life.

I leave you will a little something for the weekend

Here Comes The Weekend - Pink, featuring Eminem
(The Truth About Love = RCA Records 2012)

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Nothing's Gonna Steal My Joy!

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Colossians 3:12-13

New International Version (NIV)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

All Good Things Must Come To An End

Spoiler Alert: If you haven't watched this yet, don't go any further.

Well, it's finally over.

After nine seasons, How I Met Your Mother has come to an end. Nine

After following Ted's meandering story for these last several years, I am a little disappointed. 
I can't believe after all that buildup, The Mother, (who we finally find out, thanks to a lost-then-found-again yellow umbrella, is named Tracy) dies in the end.  We don't know from what, but we know they were together for seven years before they marry, and he is telling the story six years after she is gone.  And he's telling it in 2030.
Lily and Marshall wind up with three children (though they didn't tell us what the last one was) and Marshall runs for state supreme court.
Interesting plot twist. Karma catches up to Barney, the old tail chaser, and one of his conquests winds up pregnant.  Months later we see that Barney unwittingly becomes the proud papa to, of all things, a baby girl. Then we get to see a more mature, settle Barney. At Last! Who hasn't had children and was suddenly changed forever?  But one moment, almost brought me to tears, and not out of the sweetness of the moment. When he meets "Ellie" for the very first time, he says to her " All that I am and all that I have,  is yours forever." and he kisses her little forehead. But I wasn't thinking about that.
That had been part of our vows.  I remember standing in the church, looking into D/H's beautiful chocolate brown eyes, tears still glistening on his cheek from my walk down the aisle, and hearing our preacher say it.  I had been sick that day and was on all kinds of sinus medicine, and cough medicine and overcome by happiness, lost in that moment, and not quite hearing what he had said.  "All that I am, and all that I have, I give to you." Simple enough. I can say it now, but at the time it had sounded like a big ol' tongue twister. It may has well been Sally sells seashells by the sea shore right then. I turned to the preacher and said in my best Southern English "Do what?" The whole congregation had laughed.   And here I was, fifteen years later, reliving that split-second in time.  I couldn't breathe.
Funny how the littlest things bring up the biggest heartache. It was hard enough to just watch these last few months, knowing that it had been something that we had shared and enjoyed together. Recording it and watching it together each week. Trying to deduce from all the clues who the mother might be.  Little things.
But enough about that.
There were some great moments over the years and who hasn't incorporated some catch-phrases and other quirky little thoughts to their everyday lives. The Bro-Code, Pause, son of a beesh, The Slap, and of course,  It's gonna be legen...wait for it...dary!
But predictably enough, Ted winds up on Robin's doorstep, carrying the Blue French Horn, from their very first date.  These past nine seasons were getting to the fact that he was actually telling them the reasons he was thinking about Robin.  And the kids kinda knew it all along.
It was obvious throughout the years that Ted really held a torch for Robin, so I guess it was fate that we end the show almost where it had started.
And all good things must come to an end.
Now what am I going to do with my Mondays?

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

No Foolin'

Today was my grandfather's birthday.  Had he lived, he would have been 93.

Yes, April 1st for the rest of the world is April Fools Day. But for my family, it was Grandaddy's birthday.  And he deserved to enjoy his birthday, with all the respect and fun due anyone else on their birthday.

And for that reason, out of respect for him, we do not play April Fool's jokes.

Now Grandaddy enjoyed a good joke as much as anyone, but this day seemed to bring out the comedian in everyone, good, bad, or otherwise. 

Over the years, we had all heard the stories of bad practical jokes that he would endure on his birthday.  Like the pilot , on a trip back home from California,  who told a plane full of passengers that my grandfather would get to fly the plane, just because it was his birthday.  But the joke would have been on him, as my grandfather actually could fly the plane, having been a mechanic in the US Army Air Corp in World War II.  "Just like test driving a car" he used to say, " how do you think we knew we'd fixed 'em."

Grandaddy also loved a good toe-tapper, so when I heard this song this morning on The Rick and Bubba Show, I thought it'd be perfect for today.

Happy Birthday Grandaddy!

Mission Temple Fireworks Stand ~ Paul Thorn - 
(Mission Temple Fireworks Stand - Perpetual Obscurity2002)