Monday, March 31, 2008


Wild Azalea
Giant Swallowtail Butterfly on Left Bloom
I have a "Wild Azalea" in my back that is blooming now. You will note in the top picture that the blooms actually look a lot like a honeysuckle bloom, but they are pink. Honeysuckle is also a vine and this is a plant. This is what my "Master Gardener Friend" calls a "Native Plant". Native plants are naturally occurring plants that some even call weeds. We have a wide variety of wild flowers in Louisiana since this is considered an almost sub-tropic climate. Pappaw Conville found this and brought it to me a number of years ago. It has done quite well and with little or no attention. The azaleas that you buy at the nursery are prone to disease and require quite a bit of attention including spraying and feeding. I made a decision some time ago that I would not plant anymore azaleas. I prefer more low maintenance plants and do not want to spend a lot of time spraying and fighting bugs and disease.
I am slowly packing up my kitchen for the big remodel. It is amazing what gets stuck in drawers and cabinets over the years. I pride myself in keeping things culled to that which I use, but somehow some of the pots, pans, dishes, etc. have gotten a little out of hand. The most disturbing thing is the keys that you come across that you have no idea what they go to. My personal philosophy is that if I don't know what it goes to and have not used it in the last 24 years, then I probably do not need it.
We ran 5 miles this AM in the heat and humidity. The acclimation period of adjusting to the heat and humidity is tough! The adjustment curve can be steep and the pace definitely slows down. A long hot summer of profuse sweating is just around the corner!

Sunday, March 30, 2008


I remember as a younger adult looking at what I considered "Senior Adults" at that time and thinking they had it made. Their kids were all grown and out of the house, they had cute little grandchildren, and their lives seemed to be their own. They were through the years of what I refer to as "Active Parenting". No more late nights, no more expenses relating to those off-spring and they were free to live a self-absorbed life focusing upon their needs and desires.


In case all of you young moms and dads think this will be the case someday, THINK AGAIN! Those days of "In the trench" parenting are over-but the worrying-well I don't think the worrying is ever over! Even those kids that are approaching "Middle Age" are still on the radar. You are concerned about the economy, their jobs, the dangerous society we are surrounded by, the cost of educating their children . . . . . . . . . the list can go on and on.

We and some of our peers have children that are floating around trying to figure out what they want to do with their lives. This is difficult for us to understand as need was the "Mother of Necessity" when working was concerned. We wanted good jobs and aspired to good jobs but bottom line was-we did not have the luxury of not working. I am not crying in my mug nor complaining, for I feel like I am the better person for this. We desire for our kids to have jobs that they love, but also understand looking back that there are no perfect jobs; just as there are no perfect people, there are also no perfect jobs.

Bobby & I both feel like our parents did not worry about us, our kids, our jobs, our future, or any other pertinent subject. They felt like they had done their job and had us raised and then we were on our own. Perhaps worrying about adult children is a generational thing, beginning with our generation. I really don't have an explanation except to say that things are very different now.

My friend, Barbara sent me an interesting article about this subject today which was the incentive for this post. Check it out and see what you think:

I did not agree with everything the article said and definitely have no designs for our children taking care of us in the future. We used to kid Camille and tell her that we had her late in life so she could take care of us in our old age. That is certainly not our plan and we pray that we never need their help. Independence is the desire of each and every person that I know. The article does give me some comfort in knowing that I am not the only person worrying about their children.

I believe there is a scripture that states you don't add anything to your life by worrying. This is certainly "The Truth", but turning off worrying can sometimes be as difficult as turning off breathing.

Saturday, March 29, 2008


Bobby & I went for a drive this afternoon and admired all of the dogwoods blooming. They are absolutely at their peak. If you want to see a proverbial sea of dogwoods, you should drive through Lanfair neighborhood. There are literally ten or more in almost every yard in the neighborhood. It is like driving though an orchard of cotton tipped trees.

My friend, "The Hummingbird", has shown up. The hummingbirds send out scouts that come ahead of the large flocks that should arrive within 2 to 3 weeks. The first bird appeared a couple of days ago and I immediately put out my feeder. I saw him on the feeder today and he is SO SMALL. After flying all of those hundreds of miles, there is no reserve left on this the tiniest of birds. It is truly a wonder to think about these tiny birds, whose nest is the size of a quarter, fly hundreds of miles from their winter homes in South America. I would love to see that sight for myself.

The wisteria vines are in full bloom in many of the area trees. The wonderful thing about wisteria, besides the fact that it is beautiful, is the smell. Wisteria smells like Spring. A sweet smell that permeates the air when you happen by. It is always a delight to be out for a run and happen upon a tree covered by the delightful vine. You smell the flower before you see it and the scent follows long after you have passed the beautiful sight.
Larry, Susan, Mona & I ran this AM. I am thankful I had already done my weekly long run, so only 5 miles this AM. Mona has been out of action for a while and has the crud I had last week, so we went really SLOW and walked the hills. Just glad to get the exercise in.

Friday, March 28, 2008


I FINALLY figured it out! This is the same picture as below-but edited!
Red Japanese Maple-Leaves Have Opened Island Azalea Bed-In Full Bloom
White Azalea Bed-Behind Bird House

Bachelor Button-Gift from Babs
OK-a little time and a little patience and I figure the photo dilemma out! Enjoy the pics from my yard!

HEY, PICK ME!!!!!!!!!!

WHAT IS THE DEAL with these do over shows???? How in the world do you get picked for the "Do Me Over" shows? I would love a new wardrobe-a new look-a new body-better hair-whitest teeth. I think I would be the perfect candidate. I definitely could use the help. HEY-MISTER HEY-OPRAH!!!!PICK ME! When you pick me though-I don't want to look like those people that are fixing you. You know the freaky-over the top-unshaven-weird looking pros-THAT IS NOT THE LOOK I AM LOOKING FOR!

Look carefully at the picture and on top of the birdhouse. I had a "Looker" today and hopefully he will bring his "Mrs." back and set up residence. I love to have a bird family and watch them sitting on the nest, feeding the young & then teaching the babies to fly. This is right in my front yard, so I can take in all of the action.

What is the deal with these computers? I had it all down-how to edit my pictures. All of a sudden-one day-that program is gone and another-THAT I HATE-has taken its place. I try to publish pictures to my blog and they just disappear-OUT FLOATING AROUND IN CYBERSPACE SOMEWHERE. I know just enough to be dangerous. My technical advisor is my younger brother, Noel-"The Computer Guru". I would call and ask him, but then I would get that snort of laughter and smirk of disdain over his "Idiot-Technically Challenged Sister". I only call and subject myself to that when I can't get the computer to come on or work-in other words-"Totally Desperate". I tried down loading another editing program-you don't even want to know about that fiasco! I will just keep on trying and maybe someday I will chance open that editing program that I loved!

Big Kitchen remodeling starting in 1 week. I am cleaning out and boxing up. You have to get everything out to replace what is there. I am excited-NEW FROM THE CEILING DOWN. How exciting is that-even worth a couple or three weeks without a kitchen!

Thursday, March 27, 2008


Where or Where Are the Pictures????? Floating Around in Cyberspace!

All of the above are pictures from my yard. I spent the afternoon working in the yard. I have been strawing beds and moving some plants around. The only picture that I could not get to download was a "Bachelor Button" that Babs gave me to plant. She also gave me an "old fashioned phlox" and it is planted in the same site as well as a couple of elephant ears that I put in the back. I love to get new plants and enjoy planting and them watching the growth and blooming of these plants. The wonderful thing about "donor plants" is that every time I look at them I will think of Babs. Babs has a real green thumb that she inherited from her Mother that lives just down the street from her. They both have beautiful yards and give me something to strive for. You have got to love this time of the year. Renewal & regrowth of all that surrounds us. The pollen is bearable, because it comes with this BEAUTIFUL time of the year.

All of the above is definitely a sign of Spring, but one constant in our house and ALWAYS a sure sign of Spring is my need to wash windows. All of a sudden, it occurs to me that the windows are cloudy and dirty and not giving me the "Optimal View" of the beauty surrounding our home. I got busy this AM and washed all of the windows on the back of the house. Some years ago it occurred to me that all of the windows did not have to be done in one day. I am more sensible now and take a section at a time. When you look out the back windows now, you feel like you could touch the greenery and smell the wonderful scent of Spring. YES IT IS INDEED SPRING-I am inspired to have a clear view of the wonders of Mother Nature!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


I had no idea what to blog about------and then Miss Camille jogged a long ago memory.

When Camille was some where around early high school, I think, she tried to burn the old house down. She and her silly as she was friend, Sunny, were having a sleep over. Well as all sleep overs go, I am sure there was too much late night telephone talking, giggling, and stuffing their faces. Long after the late of the night and in fact in the early morning hours, I hear the smoke alarm go off. One of the curses of my life is my ability to hear the key being slipped into the door from the other end of the house-in other words- I HEAR EVERY NIGHT SOUND. Well the smoke alarm, was not exactly a muffled sound, but rather a siren in the night. My feet were on the floor and running down the hall before it even registered on me what the sound was. I began looking for which smoke alarm was sounding, but to no avail downstairs. The door to the upstairs was always kept shut, so I didn't realize we had a fire until I got all the way up there and opened the door. The bathroom is right in front of the door, between the two upstairs bedrooms. There was no light on, but the flames in the bathroom illuminated the dark. I rushed in and discovered that a candle had been left burning-THANKFULLY on the tile counter top. For some reason once the candle had burned almost all the way out, all of the wax spilled out and caught on fire. I rushed in and tried to throw it into the sink and it broke into a million pieces. I believe about this time BC made it up the stairs and helped to put the fire out. Smoke is billowing out of the room and the fire alarm is screaming. I go into Camille's room which must be about 5 or 6 feet from the bathroom door and she and Sunny are snoozing away. NEEDLESS TO SAY-I WAS JUST A LITTLE BIT OVER THE TOP IRRITATED! When questioned, Camille swore up and down she did not leave that candle burning. I guess the Devil must have done it.

If you wonder why dorms and apartments sometimes ban candles, I think you might have your answer in this little story! To this day, I am now super sensitive to the smell of a candle burning and have MANY a night gone to make sure they were extinguished after settling down for my long winter's nap.

If March winds bring April showers, then we should have a monsoon come April based upon all of the wind we have had for March.

Got up and ran our long 10 mile run this AM. This sounded like a good idea Monday after running 5 miles for the first time after a week of ailing. In case you don't already know-10 MILE IS A LONG WAY! I somehow made it, but did some walking at the end. Still ended up with a below 12 minute average, and I will be satisfied with that since I am still HACKING about half the time!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008



There seems that a woman in Kansas whose boyfriend called the police and reported that his girlfriend had not left the bathroom for two years. HUMMMM-TWO YEARS! The Sheriff arrived and immediately called for back up. Well the man was exaggerating, but the woman had been in the bathroom for two months. Not two years, BUT STILL A LONG TIME!

When the local authorities entered the bathroom they found the woman sitting on "The Throne", with her pants down a little-"in traditional manner" but fully clothed otherwise. The Sheriff reported that the woman was not glued, not tied, just physically stuck by her body. They reported that she had even slept there. The local "High Sheriff & Crew" used a pry bar to remove the seat from the toilet. The woman was then taken to the hospital with the seat still attached. The woman was treated for skin infections, nerve problems, AND WAS RECEIVING MENTAL HELP!!! DUH! Her boyfriend was charged with mistreatment of a dependent adult.

Okay let's think about this- the woman feels the call of nature-

she proceeds to attend to this in the normal fashion for us all-

upon finishing-she tries to stand back up -----AND DISCOVERS SHE IS STUCK.

At this point in time- I am sure she calls the "Wonder Boy" she is living with and asks for help.

Perhaps he even goes in and tries to help, obviously without success.

Does he call for aid or help-

OH NO- he just walks back into the living room and plops down in front of the television.

NOW FOR TWO MONTHS-I am sure she was YAPPING AWAY at this sorry excuse for a man and for two months-HE IGNORES HER!


He obviously must have provided at least water and probably food for her. All the while she is sitting-pleading-begging-imploring for help.


I told you that truth was stranger than fiction!

Monday, March 24, 2008


With the onset of Spring, we have the beginning of the "Southern Pollen Fog". Every conceivable surface is covered with the yellow-green fine powder which comes with new tree growth. The deck has turned this same color as well as the drive. My previously pristine white Explorer is now a new shade of glazed pollen. I got out this afternoon to blow off all of the decks, porches, and drives. After more than a week of hacking, I did have the good sense to wear a mask. I read a church sign that said Spring is God's postcard to his loved ones. I couldn't put it any better!

Camille wrote in her blog about her fly fishing trip with Adam. She talked of learning to "Tease the Fish". My mother told me it was not nice to tease. I do have very real memories of being unmercifully teased by older brother, Robbie. I remember once at a very difficult time in a teen's life, working on make up techniques. When finished with my eye make up, I thought I had done a great job. When he saw me, he asked was I trying to look like a clown. That could be the reason that until this day, the make up is pretty light. Words said to get a laugh or a rise, and in a "Teasing" sense, sometimes have life long effects. I love to tease my friends and family, but try to stay off of sensitive subjects and always assure them of my love. Careful what you say-some words are never forgotten by the butt of the joke!

I remarked today that I might need an iron lung if I hacked up a lung. I am really dating myself when I speak of an iron lung. A very real part of my childhood was the threat of polio. I have friends and acquaintances that were affected by this deadly virus. Polio affects your muscles and causes paralysis. In severe cases, the muscles that controlled breathing quit working. The patient was placed in the iron lung which using air pressure forced the air in and out of the lungs. The modern day ventilator is the answer to the huge and bulky iron lung. Medical science has come a long way since those scary days.

One of the myths that floated around during those days is that you got the virus in the heat of the day. We were all under mandatory nap and rest orders during the hot summer months. This is probably one of the things that helped me learn to love to read. We were allowed to read after lunch and since there was no choice but to be in the bedroom-reading it was! I always suspected that this was Momma's way to get her own nap, but she would never admit something like that.

I did get up and run 5 miles this AM. SLLLLLOOOOOWWWWW! The really interesting thing is that you don't cough, much at all, while running, BUT WHEN YOU STOP-the deluge begins!

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Ice Cream Truck
New Orleans Lucky Dog Cart
Seattle Air Stream Restaurant

Fraternity Boys Answer To Refreshments on Wheels
I have my own "Personal Meals on Wheels"-Mr C. He has made it his mission to see that I eat while under the weather. I do not have much of an appetite while coughing with every other breathe. We go for a ride to get out of the house and he starts asking me what would you like to get to eat? Usually before we head home, we have picked up a sandwich or soup. The man has a knack at making the non-hungry eat.
While thinking about Meals on Wheels, I thought of the many ways that different food articles are sold while on wheels. The New Orleans Lucky Dog cart led me to the memory of a hilarious story that niece, Ann, told me about a visit to the Crescent City. She had me rolling in the floor when she related an annoying acquaintance eating not one-but several Lucky's-barely taking the time to chew. I believe she said the girl literally inhaled the dogs. They then proceed to visit one of the Bourbon Street Notables and sample the "store special drink". After bolting the drink down-WAY TO FAST- and going back for more, disastrous results happen. The Lucky Dog is revisited-and unfortunately in almost the same form as how it went down. When the angry bouncer, begins to look for who brought the girl in, Ann quickly disavows all knowledge. The story is even better when she tells it with her flair. I never go to NO and not think of THE LUCKY DOG story! They lost a GREAT deal of their charm after that story!
We have all delighted in the tinkle of the bells as "The Ice Cream Truck" made its summer rounds. In my younger days, carnival food carts had a magical pull-corn dogs, cotton candy, taffy, candy apples, and on and on. There is just something about food that is served on wheels.
When Camille was a little girl, she decided to have the age old traditional "Summer Lemonade Stand". We live in a dead end neighborhood and at the time, we knew all of the neighbors, so it was a great thing to do. The only bad thing about a dead end neighborhood is that there is not much traffic, thus not much business. The wheels began turning and she came up with a plan. The lemonade stand became a traveling lemonade stand. She puts the entire inventory into her wagon and then goes door to door ringing bells. I believe she did quite well! Don't we miss the innocence of those days?
Meals on Wheels-a great idea-but I am ready to get back to the business of living-including cooking!

Saturday, March 22, 2008


Sno-Ball Stand is Open!
Crawfish on every corner!

Trees in full bloom!

Peach Orchard

A Promise of DELICIOUS Summer Peaches!

Up-close Peach Tree Blooms

Dogwood Tree in Full Bloom!

The True Southern Easter Flower
It is truly Easter in Ruston as the above pictures show. A late afternoon drive, to get the patient out of the house, revealed the above sights. What a glory Easter is! Not the best time to be flying at half mast, but the promise of a better tomorrow is all around. As I once heard in a wonderful sermon- "It's Friday-------BUT SUNDAY IS COMING!!!!!!" The wonderful promise of Easter! What a blessing!

Friday, March 21, 2008


After a week of hugging the couch and occasionally making it to my chair, I have new calluses as noted in the title. No work out since Monday's run, and I am getting soft and squishy sitting around. The worst thing is missing the great outdoors languishing here, coughing my guts out.

We didn't make it to Texas. More low grade fever early this AM. I have diagnosed myself with bronchitis. Between Musinex and Robitussin, we are breaking the congestion up. The only bad thing is I have just about coughed a lung up too. That which doesn't kill us, makes us stronger-or some such line of BULL!

Bobby is off today and we have enjoyed a day of March Madness. I am not much of a television sports fan, except for March Madness and Tennis. We have seen some great basketball today. Bobby does not have too many uncommitted days that he can totally chill and unwind. He needs those days since he is a hard worker in a very stressful job.

I am sad to not be with "The Boys" Sunday when the Easter Bunny visits. This will also be the first Easter ever that we have not been with Camille. WELL, I will have to work hard to not be sad this weekend. There's nothing like a "drug haze" to numb those emotions!

Camille & Easter reminds me of the time that Mr. Track gave Camille a rabbit. When someone gives you a rabbit, the cage, and the food, it is difficult to tell your daughter NO. The rabbit is fine, until Bobby leaves for a work trip. I hear all of the dogs in the neighborhood at 2 AM going crazy. I go outside and find them all trying to get Mr. Bunny, including our dog. I get the water hose and turn the water on them. Our lab thinks this is great fun and makes the game of Chase the Bunny even more fun. Finally in desperation, I bring the rabbit into the house and put her in the kitchen. I close the doors and go back to bed to try and get some sleep before work the next day. The next morning, when I open the kitchen door, -------------Well let's just say that Mr. Bunny ate lots of roughage. I solve the problem by putting the rabbit's cage in the treehouse which can only be gotten to by climbing the narrow ladder.

There comes the time that Camille loses interest in Mr. Bunny. Being the softie when it comes to my daughter and also getting sick and tired of having to nag her, Bobby begins feeding the rabbit every morning. If you know Bobby, you know he is fastidious about his dress. To keep from getting dirty or wrinkled, he would climb the treehouse in his underwear to feed the rabbit every morning. ONE OF MY BIGGEST REGRETS IN LIFE, is that I never made a picture of that cute sight. OH CAMILLE------YOU OWE YOUR DADDY BIG TIME!

Thursday, March 20, 2008


One thing I have definitely caught up with this week is my movie watching. I just watched a "sleeper" called "The Dish". This is an Australian movie concerning their part in beaming back the signal from Apollo when Neil Armstrong took his first step on the moon in 1969. This was definitely "my kind of movie"! I tend to love English movies anyway-a touch of irony-a twisted humor- in general - an odd way of looking at things. This movie is well done and helped me relive those historical days. If you don't need blood & guts-non-ending excitement-immoral activities, then you might enjoy this movie.

While watching the movie, I was taken back to the day in time that I watched the walk on the moon. I thought of the huge swelling of pride we all felt at this monumental event. At the time, it was beyond comprehension that a man would actually not only travel in space, but also take steps on the moon. It was all quite remarkable!

Bobby's Grandmother Best never believed that man walked on the moon. She instead thought it was all a Hollywood trick on the entire world. She declared that this could not have ever happened! She did believe the "Championship Wrestling" was all real. OK-we have Grandmother Best, who when she straightened up to her full height-fit nicely up under my armpit, who also never had a problem standing up to anyone that invaded her turf. She was widowed when Bobby's mother was a girl. Somehow, someway, she still managed to raise her children and meet their needs. She was known to brandish a firearm and threaten bodily harm if she felt in danger. Quite the feisty "Little Woman" On the softer side she baked a WONDERFUL chocolate pie!

We were going to leave for Austin this afternoon, but after another night of coughing, we put it off. If tonight is better-then we will leave early tomorrow. I need a visit with "The Grands"! The Easter Bunny sent a few things to Ruston to take to them. Hopefully Bobby, Sweetie, & I will hit the road early tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


"The rumors of my demise are exaggerated.", Mark Twain. I have decided to return to the land of the living. After a couple of days of running a low grade fever and every inch of me aching, my fever broke last night. I am left with this occasional racking cough from deep within my chest, but no other sign of ever being sick. When we ran early Monday morning, I knew I did not feel well, but laid it off to being tired from working in the yard all weekend. I pushed myself to run anyway and therefore had a pretty sorry run. Note to self-LISTEN TO BODY-IT MAY BE TRYING TO TELL YOU SOMETHING!

While clinging to the couch and trying not to move too much, I thought of the times when I was a very young girl that I got sick. Back in the good old days, the doctor made housecalls. CAN YOU EVEN IMAGINE! He made his appointed rounds with his large black bag. Many times it would be late in the evening before he would come, which meant he had a very long day. The small town GP, while held in very high esteem in the community, also probably worked as hard, if not harder than anyone in the area. The typical remedy, at the time, was the miracle drug of penicillin-no pills-no liquids-A SHOT IN THE REAR! To this day, I have to sike myself up for needles. They didn't know then, since it was relatively new, that overuse of the wonder drug, would also lead to an allergic reaction to it. I have had just such a reaction, but not a severe reaction. Bobby actually went into shock from the same reaction and ended up with a stay in the hospital. This could be the reason I tend to "doctor" myself now and try to get over things without a visit. Most of the time, it is a virus anyway and the anti-biotics do a virus no good.

I have peers that were actually delivered at home during those days. We have once again made the full circle and some are opting for home deliveries today. I CAN'T IMAGINE WHY-but that is their choice. It's pretty hard to believe that they had home deliveries, since Momma's tale was quite different. I believe she told me you stayed in the hospital for a week or two when you delivered and then stayed in the bed a full month. HOW IN THE WORLD did anyone have time to do that???? I personally prescribe to THE GOOD EARTH philosophy of having that baby and keeping right on going! That is another day and another blog.

Tomorrow is the first day of Spring. OH JOY! I plan to enjoy each and every minute of the promise that Spring brings with it. My azaleas are in full bloom and the trees have all begun to have their leaf buds open up. OH YES-MOTHER NATURE has come through again-Spring has Sprung!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


I am sick. Got sick yesterday after lunch. Actually do not feel like blogging and have no comment. This too shall pass!

Sunday, March 16, 2008


My sweet niece, Adrian, made a comment on Camille's blog recently about her boring life. Her sister, Ann, has often also said she reads our blogs because her life is boring. I BEG TO DIFFER! How can raising children EVER be boring????? Both sisters have 2 little ones, and when I say little-I mean no one is old enough for school yet. They definitely have their hands full! To top that off, they both are career women! Ann is a pharmaceutical rep and Adrian is a social worker at the Children's Home. So in a nut shell, let's count the hats they wear-Wife; Mother; Housekeeper;Laundress; Cook; Social, Education & Medical Director for their 2 children; Career Woman; & Excellent Niece. This is the stage of life that I call-SUPER WOMAN YEARS! I have actually walked in their shoes and while I have several descriptive words for those times, none of them every included BORED! They have my deepest and most profound admiration for keeping all of those balls in the air.

For a long time, I would reflect upon my life and think, I have not done anything great. I will not leave a mark on the world. My life is not important, by the world's standards. Recently, God gave me a wonderful insight into my life. I have made a wonderful contribution to the world. I have raised 3 wonderful children! There is nothing more important than that! My kids are kind, loving, generous, sweet, and responsible members of society. My kids are compassionate and concerned for their fellow man. They are good friends, good siblings, good daddy's & Aunts & Uncles, good children, and good citizens. In these days and times, I would say that is quite an accomplishment!

So Ann & Adrian and all the other Mothers and Daddies out in Blogging Land, your life is not boring and you are currently doing the most important job in the world. You are raising your precious and sweet children! Boring-I don't think so, but rather the most exciting life one can have.

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Bobby & I spent the morning at the Boersma's with our small group. In an ongoing effort to minister to our dear friends, we went over and did a Spring clean up on their yard. We all had a great time-while working and serving our dear friends. It does not seem like work when you have a willing heart and able assistance. In a brief couple of hours, the 12 (how apropos), that were able to come, had everything looking neat and tidy and ready for Spring.

We are in the fifth year with this "Small Group". We are able to not only study "The Word" and fellowship together, but we also through growth and familiarity have "Lived Life Together". We have had many laughs, many tears, much celebration, and mutual grief together. This is not unlike what we do as individuals as we travel down life's path. The blessing of "Community" has made each and every occasion down the path a shared burden or joy. This group has gathered together and stood along side each of us as we are met with joys and sorrows. We have all learned that the burdens as well as the rewards of life are lightened or accentuated when we have this group to share them .

After we finished with our lawn duty this morning, our faithful pastor and friend, Brother Len, came and we all participated in communion together with Dale and Helen in their constant home now-their den. Len has a sweet heart and wonderful capacity for taking this age old celebration and fitting it to today. We were honored to hear those familiar words that were spoken so long ago and once again commune together as we remember the love and grace of Jesus. What a perfect ending to a great morning of serving, in the same manner that we were and are being served by "Our Father".

In short, what I wish for each and every one of you, my friends, is this wonderful gift of "Community". A group of like spirit and belief to pull together with and live life together. The road is strewn with joys and griefs, but the path becomes clear and easily trod when you have a group to travel with. God is truly good and I am blessed and thankful for his special gift of "Community".

Friday, March 14, 2008

WELL, HAIL!!!!!!!!

If you were in Erie, you might think snow in the trees.

Across the street Pear trees in full bloom.
Bobby & I were sitting here, minding our own business, tonight, watching a SLLLLOOOOOOWWWWWW movie, when we get an excited telephone call from his sister, Kathy. It seemed we were in the direct path of a tornado! We turned on the local television station and AAAAHHHH SOOOOOOO, she is correct. When the temperature has reached the upper 80's and the southern moisture has been flowing in all day-well you have the PERFECT recipe for a tornado. We did have quarter size hail, some wind, and lots of lightning, but no tornado. We have had MUCH worse storms MANY times, but thanks for the warning. Welcome to Louisiana! Ok-let me reflect on last Friday-------Oh, Yes, IT SNOWED! This Friday at 6 AM when Babs & I start our long run, it is 68 degrees. SWEAT FEST! We ran a VERY SLOW 10 miles. We consistently have gotten slower each and every week when we run our long run. Our short 5 milers are faster, but there is something about that long run that brings out the snail in us. If we continue with this trend, we soon will be finishing our long run about the time it is to start the next week's long run. NOW That WOULD BE SLOW!
I have noticed something about Bobby, he is pretty fascinated by women that are flamboyant and flashy with lots of glitz and glitter and boisterous personalities. Basically just about the opposite of his wife. He occasionally comes in telling tales of clients with the listed traits and he seems to get a real kick out of them. His wife-well she wears the minimum make up, loves her jeans and tee shirts, and is most content after a good sweaty long run or yard session and has a low maintenance wash and dry hair style. I often tell his kids that if I bite the dust first, he will quickly have a new partner and that is alright. Don't be surprised if that happens that she is one of these women that I have described. After years of a introverted, low maintenance, low key wife, he might think a the direct opposite would be exciting for the rest of his life. DOLLY PARTONS of the world-at least wait until the hearse has driven off before you begin your pursuit of this "Hunk of Burning Love"!

Thursday, March 13, 2008


I spent the day working in the yard-or perhaps a better description would be working in the woods that surround our house. It is the time of the year to reclaim the flower beds from the wilds of the woods. Once the leaves have finally stopped falling, I clean out all of the beds and restraw for a fresh start before planting any of my annuals. The azaleas have just begun to open up and the trees are beginning to sprout baby leaves. Spring has arrived in Louisiana.

While cleaning out the beds I found a big wad of red wasps beginning to build a nest. The only thing I enjoy hunting and killing are the same red wasps. I am deadly from as much as 30 feet when it comes to shooting down any of the red fiends. I don't mind them living away from the house, but do not want my grands or any other unsuspecting guest to be ambushed by the angry little pest. I have experienced the wrath of the wasp when getting too close to a nest that I didn't even know existed, so all is fair in love and war. Their notorious anger and nasty tempers are nothing to fool around with, so if they mistakenly build a nest on my turf-THEN THEIR DAYS ARE NUMBERED!

Bobby has made the claim that he kills the red wasps with his trusty BB gun. He always get the raised eyebrow - rolled eye look from me when he makes that claim. He used to sit on the front porch with his gun and produce piles of dead wasps. He swears up and down he killed them with the BB gun. Think about it-the size of a wasp-the size of the BB-the probability of BC hitting said wasp with said BB. DO YOU WONDER THAT I ROLLED MY EYES?

I keep my eyes open when out in the yard for Mr. Jake. It is the time of the year for him to slink out of his hole and begin warming up his cold cold blood. I don't mind the non-poisonous ones, but the coral snakes and copperheads have to go. We keep the shovel and hoe handy for just when Mr. Bad Jake shows up. WE caution the boys when they are here to watch where they are walking. It pays to keep your eyes open when you live in the woods.

We love living in the woods and the perks far out weigh the downers. It is all part of the joy of living in the woods!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Babs is the Road Runner in my life and I am perpetually the Wile Coyote chasing her down the road. Just as "Poor Wile" never catches the Road Runner in the cartoon, I also am never able to catch Babs. We had a great run today and I had the best time I have had in a VERY LONG TIME! I actually finished the 5 miles in less than 50 minutes. Breaking that allusive 10 minute mile is a big deal for me. With my new Forerunner, I am able to tell what each mile's time is. The first 3 miles I ran just at a little over 10 minute pace. We then picked up the pace and I ran the last 2 miles at a 9:30 pace. I DIDN'T KNOW THESE OLD LEGS STILL HAD THAT IN THEM!

I must admit that I would not be running that fast if I weren't trying to keep up with Babs. We were running our weekly hill run today which makes this run our hardest run of the week. When we run this run, I don't count the miles, I count the hills. There are long forever climbing hills as well as shorter but really steep hills. The only mile that does not have hills is mile 4, but the other 4 miles are tough!

Our Monday run is 5 pretty flat miles with only a couple of hills thrown in. For some reason our time is usually not as good for it, but still a respectable 10:15 pace. We added a couple of walking miles after that.

I have started going to yoga again, but only once a week. At the end of the hour of posing, she wants us to stand on our head. GET REAL!!!! I am perfectly content to do the alternative pose with your legs and hips off the floor and into a touch to the floor behind your head. Sort of like a sideways V.

Friend, Sandra (One of the Big Girl Runners) was in a car accident after our run this AM. She was on her way to her daughter's when she was hit. The report is that she has several broken ribs and a gash in her head. I don't even bother to tell her that she should not be running when she is injured. She has run with broken ribs before, as well as stress fractures, and various other injuries. She is quite the runner and finished the marathon in 3rd place for her age group. IMPRESSIVE. We were all relieved that she was not injured worse. One thing is for sure-YOU CAN'T KEEP A GOOD WOMAN DOWN!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Today is Pappaw Conville's 87th Birthday. WOW-say is slow and think about it for a moment. He has been here on this terrestrial ball for 87 years-31,778 days-or 762,672 hours. A LONG TIME!

Pappaw is quite a character. Whenever the family gets together, there are always Pappaw stories. He has a very high regard of his opinion on any given subject and a endless inventory of stories and a propensity to reminisce. In short-THE MAN LOVES TO TALK and BE THE CENTER OF ATTENTION!

He often starts talking to us by saying-"Have I ever told you the story about-------fill in the blank" If you DARE to say yes, he then questions you about details of the story and if you cannot answer the questions correctly-he then proceeds to tell you the story again since obviously you don't remember it very well. We have learned to just listen to the story-again- for he is going to tell it one way or another.

At the ripe of age of 87, he still works in his barber shop for half a day, five days a week. Bobby & I often laugh to ourselves and say he just needs a few hours away from Nannie everyday. He is steadily losing his clients, as he is out-living them all. Bobby asked him this past Sunday if he wanted to retire. He once again told him, "You take care of your investing business and I will take care of my barbering business." I suspect that he will be behind that barber chair as long as he is able to stand.

This past Saturday, Pappaw was telling me that his shoulder hurt when he turned over in bed. He broke that arm this past year when he fell. I told him that I was sure he now had arthritis in it since he had broken it. He told me, " No, I don't have arthritis." When I asked how he knew he didn't have it, he pulled this buckeye out of his pocket and said, "Because I carry this buckeye and it keeps me from having arthritis." I cracked up! He didn't laugh-he is convinced he does not have Mr. Arthur and I will never prove it otherwise.

Pappaw has a very tender heart and is a "Great Man of God". He taught Sunday School at the Ruston State School (institution for mentally handicapped) for 46 years. He was a fixture on the same row, same seat at the FBC of Simsboro twice on Sundays and Wednesday night and any other time the doors were open. He is concerned about the spiritual condition of his children and grandchildren and a wonderful prayer warrior for us all. He knows where he is going when his life on this earth is over, but he will quickly tell you he is in no hurry to leave here.

One thing I have learned watching Nannie, Pappaw and Momma is that growing old is not for the faint of heart. I don't know if I have the stuff to go there, but Pappaw relishes each and every day and looks forward to the days to come. Pappaw Conville is definitely quite the man! HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Pappaw!

Monday, March 10, 2008


We received an email from our sweet daughter in law, Caroline, last night about church yesterday. I couldn't believe it when I read it, for you see yesterday at church I had this overwhelming feeling come over me that I should blog about the pull of the Holy Spirit on my life. I came home and got busy and the next thing I know I am writing about Bobby's cars. While CERTAINLY an interesting and important topic, still not nearly as important as a "God" prodded blog. Caroline's email concerned the spiritual legacy of our family and the desire that her children and grandchildren would not be just "Believers", but "Followers".

This prompted my sweet remembrance of my own path to the "Follower" status. When a small child, I have memories of Sunday School, but none of ever being in church as a family. I think the years were turbulent and for the most part I had a sick Father and angry Mother. Life had not turned out like they had hoped and the emptiness and hurt were never recognized as what they were. The absence of the Truth and reassurance of the only Hope we ever will have. For some reason-unknown to me then, I would ask to be taken to church every Sunday. My Mother or Daddy would take me to the back door and drop me off. Most Sunday's I would come home after Sunday School, for you see worship services seemed like a time for families and not young girls sitting by their self. My Mammaw and Pappaw James and my Aunt Sister were there every Sunday, but for some reason I never went with them. As I grew older and had teenage friends and friends that drove, I went to Sunday School, Worship, and Sunday night MYF meetings and Worship. I don't remember anyone else in my immediate family going, but there was a "little voice" in me always telling me I needed to be there. I can't really say I was anything, but a "Babe" in Christ for all of those years, but a prolonged adolescence in Christianity is sometimes a common thing-even for adults.

Late in high school and in college, I became rebellious and "free spirited". I was convinced that I could worship on the mountain top and there was no need for "formal church" This straying from the Truth led to many tears and much heart ache as I reaped what I was sowing. A very painful lesson from God, but a lesson well learned.

After a failed marriage, while still in this separated state, and a ugly divorce, I was once again feeling the pull. I knew where I should be and the nagging would not leave until I finally found another spiritual home. Bobby ,Scott, & I began attending a local church before we married and thus began our joint spiritual odyssey. We have had periods of tremendous growth as well as periods of roaming the spiritual wilderness. One thing has never changed-there is a vacuum that we know only one thing can fill. Bobby has faithfully prayed us through life's ups and downs. He has welcomed the mantle of "Spiritual Head" for our family. He has been the "Hound of Heaven" for each and everyone of our children and loved ones. He never hesitates to speak "The Truth" with love and concern for those he loves. Where would I be without this "Gift from God"? There is no way to tell, but I am blessed and thankful that God has faithfully pursued me all of these years and I have always felt and know the irresistible pull of His Holy Spirit.

As sweet little grandson, Cade, told his Mother yesterday after church-THE ANSWER IS ALWAYS JESUS!

Sunday, March 9, 2008


1992 Ford Mustang Convertible-Bobby's was White with Red Interior
1988 Mercedes Benz Convertible

1966 Ford Falcon-School Bus Yellow With Black Interior
My sweet niece, Ann, was outraged that I did not write about Bobby's favorite cars. The man loves cars and his only reading of the newspaper is the Thursday automobile listing. He is far too conservative to spend a lot of money on a car, but has had a couple of brief splurges in his life. He had a brief affair with a 1988 Mercedes convertible. We had a youth minister that was also a great car fixer upper. Bobby supplied the $'s and Ellis did the fixing and then Bobby sold the car for him and gave him the profit. He LOVED driving the convertible until he sold it. Cherry Red with a camel interior and a black rag top. It was quite the car!
He found a white ford mustang convertible that had been in someone's garage and driven only on sunny Spring days and for parades. HE LOVED THAT CAR! Unfortunately it is WAY TOO HOT in LA to ride without air conditioning and with the top down most days of the year. He would put the top down and ride with the air conditioning on full blast. He rented a self storage warehouse to keep the car in until he was ready for a drive. It was all perfect until I finally told him how much the insurance was. That was the straw that broke the camel's back. He finally had to end his love affair and sale his beloved mistress.
Bobby's first new car was purchased when he graduated from college, before I knew him. He bought a school bus yellow Ford falcon with black interior. Everyone knew Bobby and everyone knew Bobby's car. He drove that car for six years before buying a new car, but he kept the beloved Falcon. He let his sisters drive the Falcon and then after we were married, he drove it again. We sold the Pinto and I drove his LTD and he went back to the paid for Falcon in an effort to save money and pay off our debts. He hung on to the Falcon and eventually oldest son, Scott used it for his first car. By the time Scott drove the Falcon, he made a fascinating discovery. The steering wheel would come off the shaft if you pulled up. The first time it happened, I think he was scared half to death. He then discovered that you could pull it off and on at will. He would be riding down the road and find someone glancing over at him-he would pull the steering wheel off and give a startled look and scream. I think he must have alarmed quite a few unexpecting motorist. In the last days of the Falcon, the gears would hang up on the standard shift. This meant jumping out of the car, usually at a red light, and opening the hood to unstick them. Bobby & Scott kept a towel in the car for clean up after the greasy repair and both learned to fix the gears before the light could change again. The falcon stayed around for quite a few years, and Bobby eventually sold it to another. The guy never paid for it and drove it until the engine blew up. The unpaying buyer then sold it for scrap-MUCH TO BOBBY'S SORROW! The last time Bobby saw it-it was out in the field with a tree growing through the motor. SAD DAY!
He still scowers the ads and covets a BMW and a couple of other cars that I can't remember. The game of the search is more fun than the catch, so I just listen to the never ending quest for the next conquest!
We walked 5 miles this afternoon in the glorious Spring sunshine!

Saturday, March 8, 2008


My first memory of a car is the above car. My Daddy had a 58 or 59 Oldsmobile 98 which was hot pink on the bottom and white on the top. Just like most men, Daddy had a love affair with automobiles. I distinctly remember being out for a drive one day in a Ford Thunderbird that Daddy wanted to see if it would go 100 mph. IT DID! Men and their toys! The toys just get bigger as they get older! The last car he had before he passed away was a Ford station wagon which was brown and white-BASICALLY UGLY! This is the car that Robbie and I drove until we went to college, when we had no car. Just as today-any wheels were better than no wheels!
I spotted the truck below while taking the garbage to the dumpsters the other day. INTERESTING! How in the world do they drive this thing and not drag the pavement every step of the way? Hopefully they have several jacks in the back-JUST IN CASE!
This car below is at the grocery store, almost every morning, early. I get a chuckle everytime I see it. The driver's door is kept shut with a padlock. The front bumper has the attachments as seen. The side mirror is held on by a wooden block which I suppose is bolted to the door.

I have had a series of cars over the years. When I reflect back to my favorites, they include the VW bug-which was fun to drive, the baby blue pinto that Bobby bought me before we married-4 on the floor & hatch back (such a cute car), the cutlass that the roof lining came loose and hung down behind me as I drove (finally found someone to fix it), and my current "yard truck", which is Gabe's old truck that I inherited via Pappaw. It also is 4 on the floor and I love to drive it. Maybe my fascination with standard shift came from the fact that I learned in my Granddaddy's old "Woodie Stationwagon" that he hauled his dogs around in. He taught me to drive when I was around 12 1/2 on the oil coated roads of East Texas. I currently am driving a white Ford explorer which is about the 4th or 5th white explorer that I have had. It has a 3rd row of seats, convenient for hauling runners to racers, and the ability to put the back 2 seats flat to haul all my "stuff" around with. When you find something that works-STICK WITH IT!

Friday, March 7, 2008


WHAT IN THE WORLD! Mother Nature obviously lost her GPS and made a wrong turn with her snow and sleet. We had quite a snow mid morning until just after lunch and then it began to rain. It was never below freezing, so the snow life was short. I enjoyed sitting by the fire and watching it come down while it lasted.
After a few days in a truly cold place, we had a good laugh at how everyone goes into shut down mode here when anything white begins to fall. School is dismissed early and on and on even though there is no frozen roadways. For the most part the only closures you see are governmental institutions. What does that tell you? I have a theory, but will not share for fear of stepping on toes.
Babs & I ran our 10 miles early to make sure we were not out in the wet. It was actually great, until we turned back and headed north. The wind was SO COLD! Not too many more days of this kind of weather, after all the azeleas are beginning to bloom. SPRING-OH MOTHER NATURE- IT IS TIME FOR SPRING!

Thursday, March 6, 2008


I will not be referring to myself as old anymore! The "New" term will be "Seasoned"! We got an email from BRUTHER Len at church today about a new program they are kicking around to try. The idea behind the concept is a sort of "support group" for married couples. The email was to 8 couples in the church that will serve as "facilitators" for the program. When I glanced over the list of couples, I noticed that we were BY FAR the oldest-in fact-the only 2 with an empty nest. Then upon further reading I discovered they were trying to get a representative from all stages of marriage including "THE SEASONED". Well this is certainly an interesting way to say OLD!

When running errands this AM, I passed this 18 wheeler. This gives new meaning to "back breaking". I couldn't figure out what in the world caused the middle part of the trailer to collapse, but it was quite the sight to see.

After Babs & I walked 5 miles this AM, I spent a few hours in the yard. Made good progress on cleaning out the piles of leaves in the beds. Thankfully my trusty "stick boy", Mitch came and helped. We are about half way through and then the work of planting and restrawing will begin. You should have seen the lady's face in Erie when we went to the Nursery and I asked her for straw to put in the beds. It seems there are not pine forests in the frozen north and thus no straw for sale. They put bark in their beds. HUMMMM!

Note to Yankee Transplant-As for the problem of Antz in the South, you need to go to your local nursery or feed store and ask for a poison to kill them. You just put this on top of the ant piles and they are take it back inside and it kills the entire colony. Our ants have a ferocious bite and you want to stay out of their path. Once it begins to warm and consistently stay warm during the day, the mosquitoes will begin to get bad. Usually they are not bad in the heat of the day, it is early in the AM and late in the evening when they are the worst. I keep a bottle of Cutter's by the door and spray each and every time I am going to be outside for a while. Since we have "West Nile Virus" in the area, you have to be careful.

I was talking with a fellow runner today and he told me he had been on a trail run down the high line today. He said he had to jump over "Jake" several times during the few miles. I asked him was Jake lethargic and he replied I didn't slow down to ask! HA HA HA

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


Well occasionally the underdog-the little man-the poor state school beats the privately funded, well endowed -BIG SCHOOL! Last night the LA Tech baseball team beat the Baylor Bears IN WACO! BC & I both graduated from LA Tech and Camille and Adam graduated from Baylor. We will not laud it over them that our out-manned-out-funded, smaller school came from behind to beat the "BIG BOYS", but facts are facts! Have a piece of HUMBLE PIE BEARS!
We ran 5 miles this AM and then walked 2 more. It wasn't our best time, but wasn't too bad considering a few days off. AND THEN AND THEN-OUT IN THE YARD! Beautiful day and perfect temperature, but saw how much I have to do to get the yard and beds back in shape. I stepped into an ant bed while cleaning out a bed only to discover they are all alive, well & hungry. Ended up taking a anti-histamine after getting numerous bites. Watch where you put your feet, LORA!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


These two poses will not happen in this lifetime!!!!!

Back to the real world and my resolve to work out more. I was up at 5:20 and out the door for Yoga by 5:40. The good thing is that Tech is on quarter break, so there were only 4 of us in class today. NO YOUNG AND AGILE COEDS & ATHLETES! The teacher, Donna, was trying to be kind and purposefully took it a little slower and actually worked with me on some of the poses. Kindness though did not keep me from trembling while trying to hold some of those poses. OK-I KNOW YOU CAN'T WIN AT YOGA! I found myself in the child pose several times to catch a break. I also can't do some of the contorted poses everyone else seems to find so easy. That hour was more like a day- as Steve Martin said in "The Jerk". We seem to have brought the cold weather back with us from Erie, so I skipped walking today. Tomorrow, though, we are back at the "running game". Indeed the real world of exercise returns.
I went to the exercise terrorist(therapist) after lunch for another session of torture. My legs were actually in good shape, but my shoulders and back were knotted up. Perhaps this is from doing an hour's worth of planks, downward dogs, & chadarunga (sp?)???? After having leg length discrepancy of 1 1/2 " last time, I was actually in good shape today. I knew that going in, since I was not in pain when running. The man can find knots in your muscles that you had no idea were there. He told me to soak my foot in the hottest water I could stand, while at the same time icing a swollen knee which was bruised during a cross country skiing fall. My body will be so confused- AM I HOT OR AM I COLD????Oh- but I know-I am always HHHHHHOOOOOOTTTTT!
I have my new shoes. I AM A HAPPY CAMPER! HOT PINK & ORANGE TRIM-RADICAL! Perhaps they will make me run faster!