Saturday, January 31, 2009


We went with brother, Robbie & Laurie to eat catfish at Port au Prince on Lake Claiborne. This is without a doubt the best catfish restaurant we have EVER eaten at. The meal begins with a small bowl of bean soup, hush puppies, cold slaw and pickles. Shortly after that course, they bring you crisp catfish filets and homemade french fries. Of COURSE, a big glass of sweet tea tops the meal off. We ate until we were full to the brim, but did leave enough room for home made pie. No matter where you live, this fare is worth the drive. You just cannot top this family owned long time icon of good Southern eating!

When You Drive Up This Mail Box Greets You
The Sign Marking The Prince Family's Business
On Our Way In To Enjoy

The Sun Setting On The Lake

The Red Sun Reflecting To The East And Dusk Arriving To The West

The Men And Our Pretty Waitress

Robbie told a cute story about his granddaughter, Emma. It seems that they were discussing the Inauguration at school last week. When asked what they talked about Emma said that the new president was the first president with brown skin. When asked why he has brown skin, she said he and his family like to swim a lot. She then said, "His name is Rock Bama." I JUST LOVE KIDS!

Emma and Her Daddy

Friday, January 30, 2009


While floating around in the "Blog-a-sphere" this morning, I ran across a web-site that rates the level your blog is written on. The blog I found it on was rated college level, so I thought,
"Hey wonder where I stand." I AM SO INSULTED! It seems the brains that put together this survey have me on a "Junior High" Level. WELL!

Did I EVER even once discuss bodily functions? Have I ever been mean spirited? Have I spent all of my time running on and on and on about me-myself & I? (DON'T ANSWER THAT!) To get down to the junior high level, you have got to go REALLY basic! They have just gone from fully wet behind the ears to still damp. Could I be on that level?

I have a BS in accounting, I passed the CPA test, I AM NO DUMMY! Now perhaps I should go back and start all over and begin blogging about the complexity of inventory tracking systems or expound on the Tax Code or even HEAVEN FORBID! give another post or two on stock trading. YOU WANT TECHNICAL & HARD TO UNDERSTAND? I CAN GO THERE!

Then I reflected back on the writing courses I took while in college. Every writer knows-the KISS method. You know Keep It Simple Stupid! We don't write to impress everyone with our superior intellect, we write to tell a story, convey a thought, or entertain those that are reading. Hopefully that is just what I have done. If it is too simple or easy to understand, is that a bad thing?

INSULT ME-INSULT MY READERS! SO BLAHHHHH TO YOU, RATING SITE! You can take your rating and ------ --!

As a little side note-it was COLD this AM when we ran our 8 miles. I was red cheeked even after driving home! I dressed for the temperatures, and even took off a layer about 3 miles into the run, but your face-what do you do without sweating up a storm to keep your face wam?

Thursday, January 29, 2009


There is no loneliness like the alone you feel in the deep-dark-quiet of the middle of the night. Time never moves slowly until you are awake during those hours when the world is sleeping, but you-you are so awake. I learned about these hours at a real conscious level when my children were babies. How many nights have I sat in a rocker or a recliner holding a fretful baby? Whether illness or bad dreams, for some reason the little charge in my life is awake and the only comfort they want is to be held in their Mother's arms. Dazed by sleep deprivation, I rock and hold and watch the minutes slowly turn over. Empathy for a child and desperation for sleep crowd my mind and I watch the night pass ever so slowly. It is as if the night will be forever.

There then comes a period in your life when blissful sleep and rest are taken for granted. Oh that precious day when you get a full night's sleep! That rhythm is broken by teenage years. Long nights of waiting for the key to slip into the door, long nights of worry, and long nights of past-due projects, important tests, and late book reports with no book read enter into my life. How many nights with 15 years between oldest and youngest did I spend raising teenagers and staring at the clock in the middle of the night?

Then when you think all should be better and sleep should come, mid-life comes. Nights of tossing and turning, once again staring at the clock and wondering why my eyes will not stay shut. Long nights of counting the hours as they slowly roll over on the clock. Nights of calculating if I go to sleep now how much sleep I will get. Nights of frustration and dismay since sleep will not come.

Just as this passes and you think sleep should come-unrest comes to my life. More long nights of staring at the clock, of looking at the deep-dark of the night with a far away street light providing a glimmer of light. Nights of tall tree shadows as I gaze out the window-nights of silhouetted objects and the deep deep quiet that only comes in those ominous hours of the night. With my mind spinning at a incredible speed all day, the night often brings clarity of thought and recognition of facts that I missed during the mad spinning of my day. Nights when I am nudged awake and led to prayer as the only source of comfort and finally bringing sleep.

The wee hours of the night are a surreal world when you truly feel alone in the universe. Loneliness to a degree that is heart breaking and painful to the deep core of my being. I thank God that the sun comes up and the deep-lonely hours of the night have passed and the sleep I so desperately need have come with the early morning twi-light. There is truly no alone-ness like that which comes in the deep dark hours of the night-no loneliness is ever greater.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Somewhere along the way, some SMART doctor figured out that the way to limit the number of doctors was to name all diseases and conditions by names that are impossible to pronounce for the average layman. Why if all illnesses were called by short and sweet names such as "Cold" or "Flu", we could all be doctors. Well most of us know the correct term is "Influenza" and "Rhino Virus". How much could you charge for diagnosing a 3 or 4 letter illness? So you get the drift.

This spills over to mental health diagnosis also. We are not "Sad", we are clinically depressed. We are not crazy-we have a myriad of diagnosis that cover that 5 letter word. Back in the "Good Old Days", most of the modern day mental problems were called "Nervous Breakdowns". There was no PTSS or ADD or ADHD or OCD-just substitute any letters you like. You were either crazy or you had suffered a "Nervous Breakdown". In fairness to all of the psychiatrist out there, this field didn't really exist to any degree. The family doctor gave you a tranquilizer and sleeping pills if you were "Crazy" and put you to bed for a "Nervous Breakdown". My granddaddy had Alzheimer's, but during those days (really not that long ago), they told the family he was having "Small Strokes".

BC has always remarked that if the dentist would tell him he was having a "Butterfly" instead of a "ROOT CANAL" he could have handled it a lot better. Now the endodontist is performing an Apicoctomy. Now that has a daunting sound doesn't it?

So-long story short- (NO OFFENSE MEANT ADAM) if you have anything wrong with you good luck trying to pronounce what the condition is and good luck pronouncing the treatment or drug. These guy have got it figured out-charge by the letter and you double the fee when you go over 10 letters. PRETTY SMART!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


BC is asleep on the couch taking his favorite early evening nap before staying up for most of the night. He has the remote control in his "hot little hand", so the television is on the channel he was watching. American Idol has been on and I have been watching the contestants that are trying out for the competition. I have sat here pretty amazed that most of these people put themselves through this.

There a a handful that are really talented, BUT the most of them CANNOT sing. What is the deal? Can these people not hear themselves? When I say cannot sing-I mean cannot carry a tune, cannot sing on key, have no rhythm-on and on. Do they not have friends or family that are honest with them? Why would you let your loved one embarrass themselves like this?

I was reminded of the time that we went to see Mary Lou in a beauty contestant. One of the girls got up and sang and the only description that covers her efforts is a tom cat screeching in the middle of the night. Think of the sound of someone running their fingernails on the black board. PAINFUL! Yet on the front row sat her Mother lipping the song as her daughter embarrassed herself on the stage. Obviously she thought it was beautiful. Perhaps love is not only blind, but also deaf.

We ALL would love to be able to sing. It is a wonderful talent and we are all touched by a beautiful voice. Do us all a favor if you don't realize that you do not have a singing voice, record yourself and listen. Don't embarrass yourself and then get mad because you know you are great. How humilating must it be for the entire television watching nation to know that you cannot sing? Give us a break!

Monday, January 26, 2009


I prepared a homemade pasta meat sauce for dinner tonight. IT WAS DELICIOUS! I have no pictures, since I was not prepard to post this. I couldn't NOT post this easy and great recipe though. You could play with the spices and the longer it simmers the better. If you prefer a little sweet sauce, just add a little sugar. Try it-you will like it served over any pasta with a salad and garlic bread-YUMMY!

1 pound extra-lean ground beef
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons salt
3 teaspoons pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes (I used diced tomatos with onions and oregano)
4 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried marjoram

Place ground beef in a large deep skillet. Cook over medium heat until evenly brown. Drain excess fat. Add onion, and cook until soft and translucent add garlic for about a minute (until smells cooked). Season with salt and pepper. Stir in tomato paste, tomato sauce and diced tomatoes. Season with thyme, basil, rosemary, and marjoram. Cover, and simmer on low heat for 30 minutes or more.


Our college adoptee, Meriedth brought her laundry yesterday. I tend to forget until she shows up how college students delay doing their laundry until they are down to the last two stitches they own to wear. It looks like we have had an explosion of Gap, college printed tee shirts, blue jeans, and Banana Republic in front of the washing machine. Meriedth uses hand towels for bathing. Two for each time that she baths-they stack up when you don't do your laundry for a while. For Christmas we got her some bath sheets. I told her that she could stand a little luxury in her life. I love my bath sheets-one of life's little luxuries that make me feel special if only when I am drying off after a shower. Everyone should try one!

I am an accomplished "Laundress". Momma began teaching me how to "Properly" wash clothes when I was about 12. I took over the family laundry duties not long after that and have never looked back. My poor kids have had to endure "Laundry Lessons" from Mom on the proper way to wash clothes. I would bet you the kitchen sink they are all doing it "Their Way" now. IGNORANCE IS TRULY BLISS about certain things!

One thing is for certain, I have washed and dried an entire mountain of clothes in my lifetime. "Cleanliness is next to Godliness!"

Sunday, January 25, 2009


BC, #2, and I visited Nannie & Pappaw at the Nursing Home apartments today. Our weekly visit is usually on Saturday, but since Pappaw has been sick we are going more than once a week now. Since Gabe was home for the weekend, we decided to visit today when he started back to Austin. We had a great visit and many laughs. After leaving on the way home, BC and I decided that we should write a book about all the funny things that we have heard and seen in the last ten years that Nannie and then Nannie and Pappaw both have lived either in the Nursing Home or the "Independent (VERY IMPORTANT TERM) Living" apartments. There is a full list of characters and a great story line for if not a book for sure a "sitcom" just waiting to be put down on paper.

One of the stories involves all of the ducks that live in the pond behind the apartments. I just could not resist taking a picture of them while there. They are a great group and full of personality just like we all are.
All you have to do is pop open the back door of the apartment and they come running. It seems they have been programmed just like Pavlov's Dog to come running when they hear that door pop open. Perhaps it is because Pappaw used to throw all of his scraps out the door after his meal and they enjoyed the largess.
All was well and fine until the skunks showed up to enjoy the feast also. You see Arcadia is small town and surrounded by woods-so a skunk is not a rare thing. Pappaw said when you walked down the hall all you could smell was the skunk smell. Pappaw was banned from throwing food out the door anymore, but the ducks-well unlike some of the residents they have LONG memories and after the door is opened -here they come-looking for a handout.

We were bouncing around a name for our book or sitcom and came up with -
"Leslie Lake Loons" (In honor of the nursing home and the ducks) or perhaps
"Leslie Lake Lyrics". What do you think?
There are many cute stories and a wealth of humor to be told about Leslie Lakes and the residents. Why today alone I walked away with 3 chapters. Now to find the time to write them.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


I love to cook, but I especially love to cook when cooking with those that I love. # 2 is home for the weekend and we cooked Crawfish Etouffe together for dinner. While # 2 peeled the crawfish, I chopped the veggies. I cooked the roux while he was finishing up and then added the veggies. The last step was adding the crawfish and a little tomato paste. While that simmered we slowly added chicken stock and cooked that down for several minutes. IT WAS DELICIOUS! If you would like the recipe, let me know. Crawfish season has just begun here in LA and will continue until July. I am not fond of crawfish alone, but love them cooked in a dish such as this. We all enjoyed etouffee, salad and french bread. DELICIOUS!

Giving instructions while # 2 is stirring.
It requires a lot of stirring

Here is the roux, veggies, and tomato paste

After adding the chicken stock and before cooking down

ANTICIPATION! Our encourager and chief bottle washer

Crawfish Etouffee over rice/salad with vinaigrette (in a bottle-no less) and french bread
with a side of chardonnay.

Friday, January 23, 2009


BC & I had an appointment with one of the Federal Government agencies yesterday. I walked away once again trying to determine if the people that work there hate their jobs or just hate all of the people that walk through the door. I have NEVER seen such an unhappy appearing group. Being a retired CPA who was in public practice (Freakface says Recovering CPA-good description), I worked with the IRS for a LONG time. It took a LONG time to establish a relationship with the agents that I dealt with on an on-going basis. The "Field Auditors" were actually easier to deal with than those that worked in the office. It took hard work to get a smile and when I scored a chuckle-EUREKA!

Have they been treated badly by the public? Do their bosses make their lives miserable? Do they hate their jobs? The litany of questions always runs through my mind when I make a visit to these offices.

Perhaps I am incorrect, BUT, I believe the taxes that I pay supplies the funds that pays these folks. So in some weird-round about way, I am one of the "Bosses". For all of the funds that I supply to help make the payroll, I do not expect any say so in day to day operations nor do I want to help write policy. The ONE AND ONLY thing I expect is courtesy, maybe a kind word and perhaps even a SMILE when greeted.

REALLY-if your job is SO miserable that you can't even manage a smile-GET ANOTHER JOB! I don't expect favored treatment, but I would be delighted if when I walked out of the office I left with a smile on my face from the pleasant and kind federal employee that I had dealt with.
It really is sad that I don't dare name the agency, for fear of future repercussions from revealing the truth. My good friend, Goose Creek, works for a State of Louisiana Agency. She tells me that they treat their "Clients" with respect and kindness. Perhaps Uncle Sam should take a page from the State of Louisiana manual. We may not get many things right and we might be at the bottom of the nation in many categories, BUT we do treat people in the same manner that we expect to be treated.

HELLO, UNCLE SAM-are you listening? Do you even care?

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Looking at my calendar, I see that it is still January. We have had our usual wild and wide swings of weather here in Louisiana. Our weather necessitates you checking the Weather Channel every morning before dressing to head out the door. It is not always enough to look at the local weather the night before. You never know when a front might stall or the winds might change. Today started out in the upper 30's, but by the mid afternoon we were in the mid 70's. The sun was shining and it was a BEAUTIFUL DAY! I felt the strong pull of the outdoors and my flower beds. Unfortunately, I had a busy day and never got to fulfill that call.

Just before heading to Erie, a jet went down in the Hudson River in New York City. This does not exactly instill confidence when boarding those planes-especially when in the frozen North.

We arrived in Erie after dark, but the flight home was in the daylight (I use that term very loosely since the skies were always cloudy.) When you looked out of the plane window here is what you see. WHERE IS THE RUNWAY? How does the pilot know where to taxi and where to ramp up for the take off? This did little to instill confidence in the airplane.
And then ALL OF A SUDDEN, THE BIG ORANGE MACHINE showed up to save the day. The two plows that were operating run up and down the runways going about 30 miles per hour and throwing snow in a LONG plume. While the runway was still white, I did feel better after seeing the frantic plowing before takeoff. The orange de-icer being sprayed on the plane wings was the final touch before hurling into the sky. I am happy to say that we made it home safe and sound. Give the choice though, I would prefer our Sunny 70 degree skies any day when boarding that big silver transporter. HOW IN THE WORLD DO THOSE THINGS STAY IN THE AIR, ANYWAY?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


We did not get Baby J's nursery finished, but we have either purchased and assembled or ordered all of the essential ingridents. I will try to talk you through our visualization.









We left The Jennings with the essentials in place and a plan for the rest including wall art. When we go back for the Big Day, I will post completed pictures. Less than three months-time is flying and Baby J will be here before you know it. What a wonderful blessing!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


In case you did not realize it-IT IS VERY COLD IN ERIE AND THERE IS A LOT OF SNOW! You have to work hard at staying warm in Erie and all that hard work doesn't necessarily mean you will stay warm. The wind is bitterly cold and the snow fell almost the entire time we were there. The Jennings told me they have had double the amount of the usual snowfall for this time of the year. Today's post will give you just a glimpse of the beauty of the snow and Erie covered in a white pristine blanket. It was breath-taking and beautiful beyond words, but the cold and the snow can make life difficult. You cannot just run out the door without preparation. Travel is not easy and the plodding through the ankle deep snow is no fun! We enjoyed our weekend, but when I got off the airplane in Louisiana and the temperature was 40 degrees, I felt like it was a tropical heat wave! I will not complain again about my cold runs, I PROMISE!

Perhaps Camille Should Occasionally Start Her Car?

The Kayak Is Now Floating Snow!
A Snow View From The Front Window

The Front Yard & Where Is The Road?

The Beautiful Fir In The Front Yard Full of Snow


Piles of Snow On Top Of Everything

BC In Cold Weather Gear

The Sweet Jennings In The Snow On The Front Porch

Tomorrow-Nursery Preview!

Monday, January 19, 2009


For Camille-
"Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig"

While visiting in Erie, BC & I both had the joy of being touched by a little miracle. Camille invited us to touch her "Baby Tummy" while Baby J was awake and busy. BC has always told me that he should have taught our boys to kick the football. There was money and glory in the
Kicker" and little chance of injury. When BC was taking his turn laying his hand on the tummy, he got a KICK! No slight movement, but a WOW THAT WAS A KICK!

When my turn came, I was reminded of my many races and marathons. One of the fun parts of running these races is all of the sweet little kids that line the race route to "Give you 5!" As you run by it is not a slap, but a passing touch as you continue on down the road. When I took my turn at waiting for a touch, I got the sweetest little passing touch-JUST LIKE GIVING ME 5! I was thrilled!

More to come after I download pictures, but Baby J's Throne Room is well on its way, it was REALLY COLD, it snowed almost the entire time we were in Erie, Camille is growing, but the greatest thrill of the trip was that little thump-Nothing short of a miracle for sure!

Saturday, January 17, 2009


It has been a wonderful day in Erie!  I could not go to bed without sharing a story.

We went to Babys R Us to equip Baby J's nursery.  Being Grandparents and novice parents, we did not realize that you had to order the Baby Furniture, they do not keep it in stock.  We walked to the section with all of the beds, and C & A pointed out what they liked.  It was beautiful, but I wanted to look around (you do remember the story of looking at EVERY tree at the Christmas tree farm before making a decision).  The salesman then told us you have to order the bed and it will arrive in 7-10 days.  Disappointment!  I wanted to get this nursery together while here this weekend.  I said let's look around and talk it over. I spotted a bed that I really liked, but not in the wood they had picked out.  I then spotted a couple of flaws in the bed.  I told BC to talk with the man and see-since it had a couple of dings, if we could buy that bed and take it home with us. Even BC could not talk the salesman into that.  We resigned ourselves to ordering the furniture and the Jennings being left with the chore of putting it together without us.  The man goes to his computer to order the furniture and LOW and BEHOLD they actually have that bed and the glider we want ON HAND!  We had to order the ottoman and chest, but we had a bed, mattress, and glider to bring home.  Once again God has shown be that He cares about even the small details in my life.  By pointing me to a bed that was not ANYTHING like what they thought they wanted, they now have a bed that they love and it stands assembled (after SIL & Poppa Bob's assembly)  and ready for us to accessorize tomorrow.  WHAT A WONDERFUL REMINDER OF HOW HE CARES ABOUT THE DETAILS IN OUR LIVES!

We went to the grocery to pick up items that I would need for a little Southern cooking and one of the blog readers spotted us.  I am sorry that we did not get a chance to meet, but glad he spotted us enjoying a GREAT grocery store.  The only thing that I thought was not up to "Primo" in Wegmans was the meat department.  It was alright, but with the rest of the grocery being Superb-I was disappointed with that one section.  OH HOW I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE A GROCERY LIKE WEGMAN'S at home!

I struck up a conversation with another shopper while shopping.  I left the check out line with quite a bit of her social history.  Perhaps people are the same everywhere.  It never ceases to amaze me what people are willing to tell you, if you will just stop and listen.

I had a little teary moment when trying to tell Camille that I don't slow down long enough to know how much I miss her until I am with her.  She is a "Gem"!  Such a sweet spirit, Baby J is one lucky baby!  Her Dad got to feel a little kick tonight.  We really are going to have a Yankee Grand baby!

It has warmed up to 19, but the wind-well there are no words.  We watched it snow all afternoon, but it is warm by the fire.  Truly it is beautiful!  Pictures are coming! 


We made it all the way up here to the FROZEN NORTH.  It was COLD up here when we arrived.  It is REALLY COLD this morning.  When I finally managed to drag myself out from under the warm covers this AM, it was O outside with a wind chill of -23 degrees.  We Southerners do not understand or calculate - numbers.  When you hear the locals in the airport talking about how cold it is-WELL that is enough said.  Flying over the frozen lake is really an experience, but getting off those planes and walking through the frigid air with the wind blowing is an exhilarating experience.  We got our workout sprinting to catch our two plane changes with only minutes to make our change.  I just love to run up to the airline clerk who wants to know where you have been.

We found #1 Daughter & SIL & Powers all doing well-and some are growing!  We have a blank canvas to work with in Baby J's room and after lunch, we will commence.  While Camille is away at a shower this AM, I am making nursery lists and grocery lists.  You KNOW when Momma comes to town Momma cooks for you!  Chili & Chicken Creole are on the menu for the next two nights with a definite Texas-Louisiana twist.  GET OUT THE PEPPERS!

We have found a really good restaurant here in Erie.  A small, but quaint locally owned Italian eatery.  Our food was delicious-NO Olive Garden Fare-THE REAL DEAL!  We may have found "The Place" to eat while in Erie.

I have my layers on and I am ready for our outing.  I definitely need BOOTS-but hope to live through two days without them.  You look a little ridiculous in LA with snow boots on when the sun is shining and it it 60 degrees.


Friday, January 16, 2009



SnowLikelyHi 11°F
TonightSnowLikelyLo 6°F
SaturdaySnowLikelyHi 18°F
SaturdayNightSnowLo 16°F
SundaySnowLikelyHi 23°F
SundayNightChanceSnowLo 16°F
M.L.KingDayChanceSnowHi 22°F


TodayMostlySunnyHi 40°F
TonightMostlyCloudyLo 26°F
SaturdayMostlyCloudyHi 54°F
SaturdayNightSlight ChcShowersLo 40°F
SundaySlight ChcShowersHi 56°F
SundayNightPartlyCloudyLo 34°F
M.L.KingDayPartlySunnyHi 56°F

NOT TO WORRY-the HIGH in Erie while these Southerners are there will be 23 degrees.

NOW LET'S SEE, I FROZE WHILE RUNNING THIS AM AND IT WAS 21 degrees when I started. My feet are cold and I am in the heated house right now. I hope I don't turn into a "Dreamscicle" while up North!

Pictures will be forthcoming!

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I just cannot wait to get on the airplane tomorrow headed to Erie. REALLY! The fact that the last leg of the trip from Detroit to Erie is over Lake Erie-NOW THAT REALLY EXCITES ME!

A little information can go a LONG WAY and today's NEWS well it was really over the top.

I've got to go. I need to look for my waterwings and wet suit!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I am normally apolitical-WELL actually I do not feel the need to be vocal about politics. That's what BC is for-he is PLENTY vocal-enough for the two of us. A news report this morning while trying to thaw out after my early morning-LONELY-run was enough to put my blood temperature to the boiling point.

President-Elect Obama's Treasury Secretary pick had a large outstanding tax balance from 2001-2004. It seems he is pleading "Ignorance" about the taxes being due. Now let's review this-you had income, but you did not pay the taxes on it. He had a lame excuse that he did not realize that this was self-employed income. OK-I will give him the benefit of the doubt-PERHAPS he was ignorant!

As a retired CPA, these are the facts that I do know. IF HE went to a CPA to prepare his taxes-that CPA KNEW beyond a shadow of doubt that he owed self employment taxes. So perhaps, Mr. Geithner is SO BRILLIANT that he files his own taxes with no professional help. Within a short period of time after filing his income tax returns, he DID receive a bill for the unpaid taxes. This all began in 2001, so he filed that return-even with extensions in 2002 and then by the LATEST he got a bill early 2003 for the unpaid taxes. Ditto for the next 3 years. The IRS, I AM SURE, ultimately sent a certified letter demanding payment. AND YET-HE DID NOT KNOW!

Mr. Geithner pays the taxes DAYS before the announcement of his appointment! HOW CONVENIENT! NOW WHAT HAS GOT ME GOING IS THIS MAN WILL BE IN CHARGE OF THE IRS! So the man IN CHARGE of coming after all of us if we fail to report any of our income, failed to pay his unpaid taxes-UNTIL IT MIGHT INTERFERE WITH HIS POLITICAL ASPIRATIONS!

I SMELL A RAT! I really thought the Obama administration would be above these kind of antics! NOW-I have my eye on our Louisiana Senators & Representatives. Elections will come around again-and I will NOT LET ANYONE within my sphere of influence forget their vote IF THEY APPROVE his nomination!

SHAME SHAME SHAME! Mr. Geithner owes it to President-elect Obama and his country to withdraw his nomination.

OK-I PROMISE I am off my soapbox!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


It has been a chilly day here in Louisiana. We had a cold front blow in from the North and our high today was in the 50's and the low tonight will be 27. This allows for me to have my beloved fire burning all day. One of my jobs is to load up the log trolley and bring the wood to the back door for easy access.

Tonight when I threw one of those logs onto the fire, it seems that some type of insect had a nest in one end of the log. Obviously there was a hallow hole that they crawled into when the weather turned cold. All was well until I threw that log into the flames-OUT POURED all of these big ant looking-maybe some type of spider insects. It was like "The Attack of the Fire Insect"! I have spent the last 30 minutes alternately trying to burn them and smash them. I have killed MANY of the little crawlers-mercilessly. Hopefully I have gotten all of them-but I've got my eye out and my shoe ready!

This reminds me of the varmints that friends, Jim & Debbie, have been fighting. The squirrels have been chewing on their new deck furniture. I loaned Jim my live trap to catch those little nuisances and then take them off. Debbie, the Librarian, got on the Internet and found out that if you take them off their chances for survival are not good. Not let's see-they would shoot them and kill them, but it is illegal to discharge a firearm in the city limits. Plan #2 is the live trap and taking them off, but Debbie is concerned that they will not survive. I told her my philosophy is "That is their problem!" As long as they are not a nuisance its live and let live, but when they start destroying property-BEWARE of the Squirrel Trap!

Got to go get out several layers of clothes for tomorrow's run. Friday's run will start with the temperature at 19-BURR! That is COLD for this old Southern Girl!

Monday, January 12, 2009


Roasted Chicken with Risotto and Caramelized Onions

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
1/4 cup dry white wine
7 cups hot chicken broth
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast (I used deli chicken-but you could use grilled chicken-healthier)
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme

I played with the seasonings & also heated wine that was added to rice. BC said it was delicious and he would love to have it again. Serve with salad & bread. EASY!
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the onions and saute for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the onions are a dark golden brown. Remove from heat, stir in the balsamic vinegar and set aside.
Heat the remaining oil in a separate large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the rice and mix well. Let heat for about 2 minutes, then pour in the wine. Reduce heat to medium low and start pouring in the broth about 1 cup at a time. Add more broth as each cup is absorbed. Continue in this manner until all the broth is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 20 minutes.
Stir in the reserved onion mixture and allow to heat through. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and chicken. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and garnish each serving with fresh thyme.

Olive oil heating on the left/ onions carmelizing on the right front/broth & wine heating on back right.
Rice heating sauting with olive oil in heated skillet.

Onions almost carmelized, broth, and rice cooking in broth-1 c. at a time.
Carmelized onions with balsamic vinegar added.

Finished dish. I would suggest adding parmesan cheese before serving-personal preference.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


While speaking with #1 Daughter this morning before church, she told me that Erie was having a "Snow Emergency". What in the world is a "Snow Emergency"???? I looked it up on the "Wonderful World of Information" and found that when they have more snow than they are used to handling in the Snowy Parts of the country they call it a "Snow Emergency". They then roll into action and have prioritized plowing based upon a predetermined schedule. # 1 Daughter lives a little off the "Main Drag", but not too far. I suppose this means that once she and hubby make it to the "Main Street" they can motivate. They live on the side of a hill and since she now is beginning to be great with child, I am concerned for her "Footing" in these dangerous conditions. They do not close the business at her job-no matter what-so she has to go to work. She has bought all of the "Snow Clothing Equipment" since their move and I just trust that they are being careful.

Meanwhile, this has set me to thinking about our planned trip North to get the nursery ready for Baby J. So I go to the NWS and check out the weather for the next few days:

Friday Night: A chance of snow showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 5. Chance of precipitation is 30%.Saturday: Cloudy, with a high near 18. Saturday Night: A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a low around 12. Chance of precipitation is 30%.Sunday: A chance of snow showers. Cloudy, with a high near 24.

WELL-the high will be 24 next weekend. Our low for the next few days is 29 and that will for one of our early morning runs. We bundle up like we are having a "Snow Emergency" when we get down that low for a few hours one night. BC and I have "Thin Southern Blood" and are not used to these kind of temperatures and do not have the "prerequisite snow clothing". Should be a "Chilling Weekend"! I need to cut this post short and run up to the attic and dig out the "Ski Clothes"!

Saturday, January 10, 2009


BC & I went to see "Bedtime Stories" this afternoon. I am happy to report, it was a "Happy Movie" that you actually could take your kids to and they would enjoy it as well. It is not an Academy Award contender, but I like to go to the movie and escape and feel good when I walk out. Mission accomplished! No bad language, no sex or sexual overtures, no violence, no blood or guts-IN SHORT-HOW did Hollywood slip up and make this movie? Definitely out of the ordinary for them. The theater was full for the 2 pm showing, so I take it the word has gotten around. I enjoyed Adam Sandler in his "typical role" and the two munchkins that star are really cute. Need an escape from reality and a story that has a happy ending? Tired of life and what it can hand you-go see "Bedtime Stories" and escape to the "World of Fairy Tales" where they always live happily ever after.

Friday, January 9, 2009


As per the "Shreveport Times" today:

"A fiery wreck involving a tractor-trailer carrying bread on Interstate 20 in Bienville parish diverted traffic for hours Thursday and resulted in the driver being cited for careless operation.

_________fell asleep at the wheel about 5:45 a.m. and drove the tractor-trailer into a bridge near milepost 59, according to the state police news release.

'He was hauling bread that is now toast.' Troop G spokesman said."

I tend to forget what jewels you can find when reading Southern papers. Really-do you not see the humor in the article??? Is it just Southern papers or do you find these tidbits in all newspapers no matter what section of the country?

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Today is "The King's" birthday. In honor of this special day, I will share my favorite Elvis Story.

It seems that in the early 70's, BC and I both (not married yet) were working at a local bank. The area bankers had a monthly meeting in Monroe which was about 30 miles East of Ruston. The bank president and all of the officers rode together to the meeting-I certainly regret that none of the "women" were invited along (NOT!).

A couple of the bank employees, my age, called in sick the same day. Well these things do happen and nothing was thought about it. Turns out there was an Elvis concert in Monroe the same night as the Banker's meeting. As BC, the bank president, and all of the officers drove to Monroe on the interstate that connects our two cities, they passed a familiar car. They all looked over as they went around the car, and there they were- the two "SICK EMPLOYEES"-on their way to the Elvis concert. The bank president and all of the officers looked over and there were the girls puffing away on their cigarettes headed to see "The King". The "Girls" looked over and saw the bank officers-GOT YOU!

The next day the "sick" girls showed up for work. I am certain they spent the day dreading being called in on the carpet. The Bank President played it SOOOO cool-HE NEVER SAID A WORD! YOU HAVE GOT TO LOVE IT!

Happy Birthday, Elvis!


I've got a news flash for all of you young women and maybe even the occasional man that reads this. I do not have it "All Together"! It seems when you look from the outside and casually observe my life (and others of my generation), you have gotten the impression that I have it all figured out and are able to leap tall buildings with a single bound. NOT so-NOT so at all-I AM NOT SUPERWOMAN!

It took YEARS of work to get to this point and even now I would like to run away at times, or at least run out the door screaming. In fact, one of my prescriptions for life, is an occasional good scream! REALLY-just step out the door and let it fly-it can actually feel good!

The pressure we all feel to "Perform" and give the world the appearance that all is "Fine" can be over-whelming. I DON'T CARE WHO YOU ARE! We are all caught up in appearances and trying to make everyone think, "I'm Fine". Meanwhile your rear muscles have a grasp on the chair that will cut off the blood supply to your legs and your teeth are so on edge that your jaw is aching.

So in short-all of you out there that think the older adults in your life have it all together-DON'T LET THEM FOOL YOU! After years of practice, they have just become adapt at making it all appear to be wonderful. We do not do a very good job of exposing our brokenness or pain-thus giving you the wrong impression. So do not sweat trying to live up to what is not! We are all coping and have learned the one source of comfort, but "Got it together"-I THINK NOT!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


BC's Daddy was admitted to the hospital Sunday. We took The Thompson's and had a great visit Saturday and Pappaw was his normal self, though pale. In a mere 24 hours, things took an abrupt change. SIL Kathy found Pappaw confused and not very communicative-VERY UNUSUAL! The man loves to talk and tell his stories-so he never misses an opportunity.

Now after a battery of tests, we are still no closer to knowing what is going on. Pappaw seems a little better, but still confused. He does have a very low heart rate. Perhaps the lack of oxygen to the brain is the culprit. Anyway-we are waiting for a diagnosis.

Meanwhile, a sitter had to be found to stay with Pappaw. His confusion leads to wandering and that is not always a good thing-especially with a hospital gown on. She reminds me of General Patton-the one person that refuses to have her orders not obeyed. She is keeping Pappaw in check and in line. After I saw her countenance with him, I requested that if I end up in the hospital, I will do fine with someone a little more soft spoken. I tend to be a very compliant person (NO COMMENTS FROM THE PEANUT GALLERY!).

Today Pappaw has an upset stomach. So if you weren't sick when you went to the hospital, just wait a few days! Hopefully he will be back in their apartment and with Nannie by the weekend. You know you always make a miraculous recovery on Friday when in the hospital. Who wants to make rounds on the weekend!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Go here and look at the room that will be Baby J's nursery. We are making a trip North soon and helping to put it "All Together". I am trying to decide what we need to do with the windows. This is an old historic house built in the Tudor style and as you see the windows are not uniform in the room. The bed stuff that C & A have picked out is in brown/green colors.

NOW, what do we do with the window treatment? Don't want to follow the bedding theme-since they do outgrow that and go on to other themes. Besides a few nursery patterns go a LONG WAY! Don't want to spend a fortune-but would like cute. ANY IDEAS??????

I plan to run this by my seamstress extraordinaire friends, Helen & Rachel-BUT would love to hear any other ideas. I tend to go to Roman shades, but know there are many other choices out there.


Sunday, January 4, 2009


A sure sign that the Holidays are really over is a clean refrigerator. Today after church, the deed was done! Out went all of the Holiday leftovers and we are back to a healthy diet- Well a pretty healthy diet. I did finish off the last of the tea cakes -WHY THROW AWAY SOMETHING I LOVE SO MUCH!

The life turnover included cleaning out half the garage cabinets. It seems the refrigerator bothers me-but the garage was pushing BC's button. So since I am the yard girl and know what I need and don't, that means I have to cull or not. The rest of the cabinets will have to wait until next week.

While on a roll, we also took down all of the outside Christmas decorations. They are all neatly tucked away and waiting for another Christmas. Now just driving up, you would never know we had Christmas a mere few short days ago.

Our Sunday message was the beginning of the study of I Kings-the first chapter. A lesson in how God can nudge an infirm, old man and use him to raise up the next ordained leader of Israel. A reminder of Bethsheba who has been cast aside and silent for 20 years, and yet God uses her to influence her old lover, David. David, having promised his throne to their son Solomon, had to be reminded of the promise, but remained true to his word. The chapter is divided among those that are full of themselves and jumping on board without thought of God's plans and those that have sought God's direction and allowing themselves to be used in His plans. A great man of God, David-even on his bed of infirmity declares his praise for the One True God. A wonderful God inspired lesson and a great beginning to the study of His inspired Word and God's continual work of redemption of His people .

Saturday, January 3, 2009


As you stand on our deck, the back yard which is full of trees has a steep decline to the creek which flows at the bottom of the hill. Fed by a natural spring, the water flows year round, sometimes slowly but after a big rain like a wild torrent high in the mountains. As you glance across the creek, the terrain climbs back to the same height on the other side. There are many beautiful trees across the creek, at least up to the line where the neighbors clear cut the top of the hill. In the middle of the incline on the other side of the creek, is a majestic old oak. My favorite tree in the entire 5 acres, I love to look at that old tree. A huge fork is way up the tree and it rises from the forest floor up-up to the sky. Towering as high as any tree including the trees at the top of the hill, I often stare at that tree and reflect. A wonder of nature and a blessing of God, I love that old tree.

This afternoon as I looked across the creek while washing dishes, I spotted a little magic on the top of the hill, behind that old tree. A bride and her bridesmaids were posing for a portrait in the moments before a wedding. A beautiful bride in a long flowing white gown with many bridesmaids and flower girls surrounding her, not unlike a bed of flowers at the top of the hill. It was as if I were reading a "Fairy Tale" and seeing the "Forever After" at the end of the story. I am sure I will always remember that moment and beauty of the beauties at the top of the hill with God's perfect backdrop surrounding them and the majestic oak centering my eye's picture.
Life began together at the top of the hill at the end of the day with the majestic old oak standing watch as they said, "I Do" and lived happily everafter.

Friday, January 2, 2009


Our dear and long time friends, The Thompsons are coming up from the South for an overnight visit. I am sitting here remembering the long years of our relationship and thanking God for such a blessing. We have vacationed together since #2 was 6 months old-#2 is now 32. Prior to the vacations beginning, they were our friends before we even married. Mark worked at the bank with BC and me. I actually trained Mark so that he could then be promoted above me, since HE WAS A MAN and HAD A WIFE (HELLO, I WAS A SINGLE MOM!) When I finally clued in and went back to college-beginning with night classes, Barbara would pick #1 up at Day Care and take care of him until I got out of class. I stayed with Barbara while Mark was at Guard Camp the summer she was great with child. She stayed with my boys after # 3 was born and then when I came home. She & BC claim to have single handily saved #3 when she quit breathing for a short period of time her first night home. I have since read that this occurs in many babies, and they usually begin again on their on, but some do not-thus SIDS. I am grateful that they had her in the den together and jumped into action.

We have laughed together-a lot! We have talked through our trials and miseries-many times. We have cried together. We have mourned together. We have raised children and grandchildren together. The 200 mile separation has never stopped us from our long talks, shared wisdom & prayer requests. There will never be anyone else quite like The Thompsons in our lives. What a blessing!

We will pick up where we left off at Thanksgiving and never miss a beat. Good food, good times & good fellowship-WHAT more could you ask?

We ran 11 miles this AM in the pea soup. Babs kept getting faster and I kept getting slower-but I finished. Longest run since last January's marathon. Time to start building up that endurance again-OH WHAT FUN!

Thursday, January 1, 2009


I started the New Year by reading a book-"Same Kind of Different As Me". A true story, as told by Ron Hall & Denver Moore,it is a wonderful read. It is truly amazing that every book I have read in the last four months has pointed me to God and His love for us. The book is based in Red River Parish, Louisiana and Fort Worth, Texas-familiar grounds for this reader. The authors do a great job of drawing a verbal picture of these parts of the country. An amazing true story of two people from very different walks of life and how God converges their lives and all for His glory. A sad story, but a story of how God uses the most unsuspecting of us to serve His purpose. Redemption and sanctification run concurrently all through the pages. I was left with the desire to live my life better and the affirmed knowledge of who is in charge and who directs our lives. Denver's uneducated words ring strangely profound as God once again uses a Moses-like personality to achieve His goals.
The story starts slow, but soon I found myself unable to put the book down. Had to keep coming back, in between cooking black eyed peas and cornbread, to read the next chapter. Before I knew it, I was through the book-amid tears and smiles. A wonderful book, that Babs loaned me-I plan to buy my own copy. What greater praise than I am sure I will reread this and grow with each reading. I strongly recommend you read this and be inspired.