IT'S NOT EASY BEING A SOUTHERN BELLE-EVEN AFTER YEARS OF PRACTICE!













Friday, October 12, 2012

MUST

You MUST contact me at the email address on the previous post to get my new blog address OR if you are a friend on facebook--the links are posted on my Timeline as I post the blog.

SO---contact me by email, ask to be my friend or check my timeline if already my friend on facebook to get the new blog name and address.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

CONTACT ME

So if you want to follow the soon to be new blog about "New Beginning"---contact me at convilles@gmail.com & I will give you the site as soon as I get it going.

NOW that really IS the last post on this blog.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

NEW BEGINNINGS

I am thinking along with all the other "New Beginnings" in my life---I should give up this old blog---and start a new one.  The story of my "New Life"----fun times---trails---successes--the entire tale of moving and starting over after 46 years in the same town.  

Those friends from my Facebook Page will be able to click on the new blog, when I get it up, from that page.  If you are not my Facebook friend, and want to know the address of the new blog once I get it started, you will have to leave a comment to get the address. 

Thinking over the name as I type--so this will be my last post on this site--after 1500+ posts and well over 100,000 page views--it is time to start again.  Looking forward to turning to the next chapter and telling you all the story--

Lora  


Sunday, October 7, 2012

LIKE THE STARS IN THE SKY--

God created us all different--like the stars in the sky that the 3 year old class and I talked about this morning.  The sky is full of them---more than you could EVER count---and guess what --each one is created different---unique and special.  

One of the things which satisfies us all deeply is discovering our gifts--and then using them to fulfill our purpose.  I have more gifts than just bossiness or leadership as I like to soften it----one of the gifts that fills me with great happiness and peace is serving.  I LOVE people--love to know them--listen to them--talk with them--serve them---  

One of the problems with being a CPA is that I am very aware of how much money it takes to retire---what an extended--long life of retirement can cost and how inflation can eat into our reserves.  I am careful --cautious with my spending.  I don't really enjoy shopping--funny because I do enjoy wearing cute clothes--but just don't like the chore of looking for them.  It doesn't give me any satisfaction.  

I love to travel---have seen some glorious sights--but you cannot travel all the time---it takes a lot of money.  After a week--two at the most---I am ready to see my family and friends again.

Bottom line---I am created to be in relationships---NOTHING is more important.  A relationship with my Father---with my family--with my friends---at the end of the day that is all that truly matters.  I don't feel deprived--nor lacking--nor in want---I love them all.  I have NEVER been to a funeral where the deceased was extolled for their travels, self fulfillment, or worldly success.

SO--I am taking a brave new step---I am moving to be closer to my family---I will not be so far that I can't see my friends--AND they can come see me.  I am at peace with this move and look forward to seeing how God works in all the details.  I understand that some are created different--and different is not wrong--it is what makes the world an interesting place to live---Different is just that different.  So if you are called to travel--search for what makes you happy---move from place to place---GO FOR IT---it's just not me.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

AND I THINK YOU SHOULD----

I've had many comments on facebook about my move to Fort Worth--most are very supportive and think it is a good idea.  

And--then---there was the comment about having a home in two places at once.  Go West and rent an apartment---travel between the two towns--see if I like it.  Sounded like a wonderful plan--but the expense of two households is not particularly financially wise.

Among the reasons I will move is knowing that there will come a day when I will need some help---unless some fool runs over me and I become a grease spot on the road.  LET ME DIGRESS FOR A MOMENT----on our long run this AM---I am wearing a vest with strobe lights that you couldn't miss from a mile down the road.  STILL with NO traffic and 4 lanes that provide plenty of room to move to---SOME are inclined to not only NOT move over one inch-but actually move toward you.  I am going to look into the legality of wearing a holster with a 6 shooter on my runs----I might feel the need to occasionally take it out and wave it around---just saying --You can't be TOO CAREFUL!

OK--sorry for the rant---still fresh on my mind--after this morning's 8 mile jaunt!

ANYWAY---as I was saying--I am moving knowing that the day will come when my children may need to make decisions about my care--or I may need some help.  HOPE NOT--would love to go like my grandmother--a stroke raking the yard--but we have no guarantees.  I would like to be able to make new (but keep the old) friends and get established in the area.  Find a church, find volunteer work to do, and find a group to run/ride/exercise with.  I am still in good physical condition---so now is the time.  

I had another comment that new beginnings were overrated and I should go visit my children for a few weeks/months and then travel to Europe and pamper myself.  Not sure what planet the one that made that comment lives on--but the planet I live on does not allow extravagant spending--  AND my children would be ready to put me away if they had me in their houses for extensive visits--frankly I can be a bit much---Those that are not driven--don't really appreciate us that are.

SO---it's daunting---I am just beginning to do all the research---but I am moving.  

Thursday, October 4, 2012

SWEET ERIE IN THE FALL-



I went to Erie one October while Camille lived there.  It was the most beautiful display of Fall foliage I have EVER seen.  Camille tells me that one of the things she misses most about Erie is the true change of seasons.  Our long hot summers do not lend to a brilliant Fall display unfortunately.  The pictures I made are stored on a hard drive that I pulled off my old laptop--and I still don't have them downloaded.  I snagged the picture above off the WWW--but it does not BEGIN to do justice to the show I was treated to that memorable trip.

I SO wish some of my Erie friends would send me a gallon of the BEST apple cider I have EVER put in my mouth.  I found it in a local Garden/Gift shop while there and drank so much ---well it can have negative effects if you overdo.  Sadly---it was refrigerated or I would search out the PA orchard it came from and have some shipped to me.  OH---how I loved that sweet nectar from Heaven!

Meanwhile--here is LA---we are seeing a few slight glimpses of change---but for the most part we are still lush and green.  OH FOR FALL!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

BACK IN THE SADDLE AGAIN-WHAT WAS I THINKING!

For some strange reason, I thought it sounded like a good idea to join a spin class-on trainers--with all my REALLY IN SHAPE FRIENDS--who have biked ALL summer.  Let's see -I last put my wide load in that saddle MEMORIAL DAY---THE END OF MAY!  The "King of Torture" has a day job as a Pastor----REALLY?  He must take out all his congregational frustrations on the unsuspecting Spinners.  WHO KNEW---a pastor could be so cruel.

WELL I showed him---I CHEATED---the rest of the crew did just what he said---changed those gears as he dictated---worked like dogs---sweat pouring off them.  I showed him---I just stayed in the lowest gear---guess what still sweated like a pig and thought I was going to die.

It seemed like a good idea-in my continual quest to get into better shape---I survived---but certain body parts--that I will not mention---MAY NEVER BE THE SAME!

When I move to Fort Worth---I'm going to be a COUCH POTATO!

Monday, October 1, 2012

GOD'S NUDGES--

I am praying that God will reveal His perfect plan for me---Since I blogged about trying to decide on a time to move, I have had nothing but positive comments on Facebook about moving.  I consider these nudges from God.  God has faithfully revealed every step that I should take---Perhaps he is once again confirming the right choice.

Another sign---Camille caught the virus the boys had last week and is SICK.  Adam is back working 16 hour + days and she is SICK!  I am so thankful that Adam's parents are near and always faithful to step in to help---BUT it helps me know where I am needed.  A 3 1/2 year old,  a 2 year old and a new baby---sounds like it make take A Village!

Thank you to all my sweet friends that have commented---reassured---asked me to stay--told me to do what is best.  You have been my gift from God ---and I love you all.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

IT'S ALL ABOUT TIMING-

The kids and I have all agreed that I will move to Texas.  The question is when is the right time.  They say move now---my wise confidant say moves now---I just can't seem to make a decision.

At this time, I am young enough--active enough---in good enough health that I could move and start over.  It's just a daunting thought!  It was difficult enough to move a mile down the road--can't imagine moving all those miles.

I know Ruston---I have friends in Ruston--I know where to go--where to live--it's like my friend's really old housecoat that is in tatters---she knows how it is going to feel when she slips it on and is very comfortable in it and doesn't want to make a change with a new one.  

Recent happenings have me questioning when is the time right.  Our small group of MANY years has disbanded.  I knew these friends and they knew me--we shared struggles-deaths-divorces-marriages-births---life.  We spoke of deep theological mysteries and shared struggles in our walks with Christ.  It has been a huge blow and deeply saddens me.

My running group has dwindled down to an occasional run between a few of us.  This morning---always the biggest run of the week--there were 5 of us---which is a huge group these days.  I didn't run Thursday---I didn't have anyone to run with.

My work has dwindled down to one day a week.  I have filled the idle hours with volunteer work--but the income was helping put away money for retirement.  Perhaps it is time to go to work for someone full time and why not make that change in Texas.

On the other side of the coin---I LOVE Texas---BUT I have been looking at houses online and comparing living costs.  I can actually buy more house in Texas than I have here-BUT the property taxes are 5 times more.  There also seems to be HOA dues in many of the areas.  I have not gone much deeper yet--but know the utilities are higher too.  It has to be one of the least expensive places in the country to live in Ruston.

I like my church--I am working with the 3 year olds---working with the school ministry.  I would have to find a new church--and start all over.  You can't just walk into a school in a large town and volunteer--they have to do background checks.  

BASICALLY---it is NOT a small town where we know or know of most of our fellow citizens.  It is a big world--where you have to find your way.

LOVE my kids---and KNOW there will come a day when I will need assistance-it is NOT fair to expect them to take care of me in Ruston while they all live in Texas.  I am NOT going to do that and hope to make myself as non-intrusive as possible.

The question remains---When is the time right?


Saturday, September 22, 2012

FROM COOL TO AWESOME

Sweet Camille has driven her share of vehicles in her short driving career---

There was the first "Pony"---she rolled it over and totaled it out--thankfully not seriously hurting anyone

Then there was the next "Pony" which she drove until she finished high school and then for 4 years of Baylor.

A "Cool" SUV---

THEN she graduated from Baylor and as a graduation present her Daddy & I gave her a new vehicle of her choice---

Her Choice---a Volvo Station Wagon---I personally thought perhaps a little granola (I do LOVE granola or horse food as I affectionately call it).  She drove this the year prior to marriage ---she married and moved to Erie, PA---4 years in the snow---back to TX---with two babies in tow.

NOW with the third baby on his way---she has a new vehicle---it tells a lot about where she is in life---
LOVE IT--AND LOVE HER AND HER HUBBY AND THOSE SWEET BOYS AND ONE MORE TO COME!  She has always been AWESOME!


Friday, September 21, 2012

THE WISDOM OF C.S. LEWIS

I am quiet---I don't talk about it aloud much anymore---but God is still listening in the silence of my pain and aloneness as evidenced by this infamous quote by C.S. Lewis:


“Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”

He has listened---He has shouted where even I could hear---He still has His megaphone and it penetrates the veil of dispair.  He is near--He is faithful and He sustains me.

C.S. Lewis was a very wise man--who knew God well.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

DEAR HEALTH SUPPLEMENT TAKERS--

To my friends that are trying to sell me----some brand---of health supplement and think it is the answer to all the woes associated with our propensity to stuff our mouths with anything that gets in our path AND want me to then sell said supplements etc to all my friends---

I SAW YOU THIS MORNING AT THE DONUT SHOP WHEN FINISHING MY LONG RUN!

Now I'm just saying that no---I have in the past--but no longer take handfuls of supplements and drinks to ensure I will live to 100.  I've done it all---including drinking "Barley Green"---which is BARLEY GRASS -dried and mashed and mixed with water.  IN OTHER WORDS---YARD CLIPPINGS!  BUT has it occurred to you to maybe get out and get a little exercise?  Maybe a walk around the block on a regular basis----any kind of motion---ALL motion counts!  I don't get spending big $s on all these latest and greatest when you will not do any form of physical activity.

SO---what you want is to live a LONG LIFE in a nursing home because you have not worked at sustaining your muscles and core strength?  It ALL works together---Eating and taking the right things will not guarantee a long--ACTIVE life---you have to do SOMETHING to keep those muscles strong.  Read up on it----do you know the amount of muscle fiber we loose after 40 per year---it's staggering!  TAKE your supplements---wonderful---BUT get a little exercise too, PLEASE!

Friday, September 14, 2012

MEETING OF THE MISSIONARY SOCIETY--

WAY BACK----a LONG TIME AGO--Mamaw James belonged to the "Missionary Society" in the Methodist Church.  This organization was the fore-runner to the Methodist Women which I belonged to while a member of the Methodist Church.  Mamaw James was QUITE the character---not much on being joyful and happy--in fact slightly on the negative side.  She was ALWAYS complaining about Missionary Society.  One day someone asked her why she bothered to go if she didn't like what they did or who was in it and she stated,  "It's my only social outlet".   NOW THAT WAS FUNNY!

So today I had lunch with some of my running buddies----we all seem to be running in lots of circles these days and don't get together as much as we used to.  Today  --somehow we managed to get a few together.  An hour and a half later---we were having to pull ourselves away.  GOOD FOOD AND GOOD COMPANY---cannot beat it!

Why did I bring up the Missionary Society----Well someone stopped off at our table and asked what were we all doing together today.  It just blurted out of my mouth---"We're having a meeting of the Missionary Society"-----they quickly filed on out of the restaurant without asking any more questions!

Monday, September 10, 2012

GOODNESS--IN THE MIDST OF SORROW

We said our Earthly Goodbyes to Carol today---a sweet memorial service in which I found myself reflecting, laughing, and remembering Carol and her part in the James family. 

My sweet offspring all made the trip to say Goodbye with me.  It was a rare occurrence of having the three adult children back under my roof with only us here.  We laughed and talked until 11:30 last night---my kids have wonderful gifts of humor.  Camille and I retired for the night and then giggled and gabbed until 1:00 AM--you would have thought we were a couple of teenagers.

I have three wonderful children--who make me proud---and are a constant Blessing in my life.  Thank you, Lord---for the wonderful gift of children.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

TRIP TO LULU'S HOUSE

#3 , #4  & #4 1/2---along with  4 1/2's Carrier Pigeon all came for a visit to Lulu's house.  After ALL my talking about my new toy finds--they had to come try them out.  We all had a GREAT TIME!  

 NOT POLITICALLY CORRECT--BUT WHAT IS WRONG WITH A LITTLE BOY PLAYING COWBOYS?  NEVER COULD FIND CAPS TO GO IN THE CAP GUN---SEEMS I LIVE IN A MORE INNOCENT TIME.  NOTE THE DRUM STICK---IF HE DOESN'T GET YOU WITH THE STICK---HE'LL RESORT TO SHOOTING YOU.
 Boys will be boys----our answer to the British Double Decker Bus---climb on top of the car while brother rides below you.  We made MANY a trip up and down the drive in this little buddy---THAT I FOUND IN A TRASH PILE!  $2 AT THE CAR WASH AND LOADS OF FUN!

 "HEY, PEOPLE---can someone give me a pull???"
My Ruston Market find---look at his face----He LOVED IT!

And then the fun was over as they left town late Tuesday to avoid the storm. LOVE having my house full!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

HURRICANE PREPARATION IN NORTH LA

For all my friends and readers in the FAR North-----Ruston is in North Louisiana---300 miles from the Gulf Coast.  How does Isaac impact us you might wonder---

The greatest threat---  Tornadoes--

Reality---Power Outages----That might not sound like much BUT it's 90 + degrees and the humidity is 100%---and NO POWER means   NO Air Conditioner and MISERY!

Most of us will be fortunate and not sustain damage from tornadoes or falling trees on our houses---BUT if we loose power---WE ALL will be in misery until they get us up and going again.  The WORSE news than that BAD news---most of the repair resources have headed South----that leaves limited crews to work on getting us going again.  I break out in a sweat thinking about it!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

"THE ODD LIFE"

I went to the movie yesterday and saw "The Odd Life of Timothy Green".  WONDERFUL movie!  If you are a realist--do NOT go---if you can take some fantasy and listen to the message behind it----it's a winner.

It's what life is all about---"Giving of ourselves".  Putting behind us the expectations of others---and relishing in the pure joy of serving those around us---even when we might look like the butt of the joke to others.  Don't take yourself too seriously---LISTEN when you are talked to and hear what is being said.  Do NOT get caught in the trap of setting unrealistic goals---and living for the edification of others--be who you are.

I am learning these lessons--even now----trying to figure out just who I AM and not be the person others might want me to be.  Happiness---well happiness is short-sighted-----JOY now joy which comes from serving others---It is the REAL DEAL!  It may not be glamorous---it may not be filled with worldly success--but it is  heart filling and soul sustaining.

GREAT FLICK---listen and think about the lesson that is being taught.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

FOR THOSE THAT HAVE IT ALL---YOU CAN ALWAYS--


We are fortunate to have a site on Facebook called Ruston Merchant---you can sell or buy a WIDE variety of things on this site.  I have even found a couple of treasures---kids toys for a GREAT deal & just yesterday a trifle bowl that I had JUST decided I REALLY needed!  

Today---they have a SPECIAL DEAL for all of you out there that might THINK you already have everything you could possibly ever need---BET YOU DON'T HAVE THESE (well most of you anyway!)





Belly rings!! $10 in Ruston


All I have to say is OBVIOUSLY your belly is MUCH more attractive than mine, after 3 children, if you buy AND wear these------by the way WHERE do you buy these new anyway?

Monday, August 20, 2012

MY LAUGH FOR THE DAY

It has been a LONG day since 5 AM this morning---working, visiting shut in, banking, post office---just an ordinary day

AND THEN-

I had a conversation that kept me laughing---I mean mouth thrown open---belly laughing
Here is one excerpt to let you know how funny some people in my life can be:

Me-"Bless their heart-It sounds like they (no gender revealed) need to make friends---get out establish relationships"

Them--"Have you EVER talked to them?"


Sunday, August 19, 2012

IN SEARCH OF GUINEA PIGS-----

While on a long weekend beach trip recently, sweet friend, Margarita and I cooked for "The Girls".  We had so much fun cooking together, that we decided we would start our own little Reality bit and cook together every 3-4 weeks.  Last night was our first jump into the "Saute Pan".  When it's your turn to host--you pick the menu---SO I picked Italian.  Here are the results of our labors:

Appetizer: Asaigo Puffs


 Main Course: Manicotti Stuffed with Italian Sausage, cheese & fresh sauteed spinach
covered with layers of white sauce & fresh spaghetti sauce
Anti-pasta Salad

Garlic Bread 

 Italian Pinot Grigio

Tiramisu with Homemade Lady Fingers

LOADS of fun cooking together--and then--

                                                           Good Food & Good Company

Interested in being a "Guinea Pig"----all is required is that you LOVE good food and pat
the cooks on the back at the end of the evening!

Photos by G-Clix

Saturday, August 18, 2012

NOT FUNNY---GOD!

I have a confession to make----it does my heart good to turn over and look at that alarm clock at 4:45---and realize---IT'S RAINING!!!  OH--the shear thrill---the elation---to know   I can TURN OVER AND GO BACK TO SLEEP----no guilt trip---no tossing and turning covered in the heavy weight of shame.  Just
blissful--heavenly sleep--during those hours that we ALL know we sleep the best!  There was a time in my
life that I felt the need to rise and run---no matter WHAT the weather---rain/shine/swelter/or snow----I was up and at it.  THANKFULLY---I GOT OVER THAT!!!  

How many times have I run when it was so cold that the sweat froze on the back of my shirt---THAT IS COLD!  How many times has it been so cold that my hands were numb until I got home in the hot shower to thaw out.  BUT---I will say I am not complaining---I will take the cold over the heat ANY DAY!

In case you are NOT an early morning exerciser---let me explain the conditions to you---for some reason--while it is still dark---the humidity is often held down CLOSE to the ground by the cloud cover---OR WHATEVER .  It is TRULY like running in a sauna.  In case you have never run in a sauna---the air is so heavy with moisture--that you have a difficult time pulling in enough to keep going---GASPING would be a lack luster way to describe the gut wrenching-toenail pulling-hyper-ventilating struggle to get enough of that wet air into your lungs so it can go to your heart---.  It is just NO FUN!

WHY WHY WHY am I driven to keep running---so I won't jump off the cliff--or go over the edge---to keep those happy endorphins flowing----in short---it keeps me sane!  Coming from a LONG LINE of depressed people---I discovered a LONG time ago---running would lift the cloud---make it all OKAY...SO FOREST----I RUN!

After ALL these years of pounding the pavement---I do more walking now---only running 3 days a week and walking in between---NOW still putting in 5 miles + each time we go out--and longer on the weekend-just trying to keep at it till I finally keel over hopefully in a full run someday.  BUT on those days that I roll over and hear that rain---it's like VACATION---SNOW DAY---HOLIDAY---all wrapped into one.  I LOVE IT!

Where am I headed with this----this AM I get a text from "The Flash"--rain is coming this way are you going--I text "Short BUT Strong" and she says--I'm up---I watch the weather---SO SO FUNNY GOD---the rain is all over Shreveport an hour west---but the closer it gets to us---it just disappears.  SO we get up--we run--we walk---we make about 7 miles.   NOW IT'S NOT JUST RAINING BUT POURING-

ARE YOU UP THERE SNICKERING GOD????---Something tells me You are!

Friday, August 17, 2012

THE MAGICAL POWER IN MY LIFE

I don't really believe in "Magic"---I am a skeptic at heart-of anything that appears it is magical----WITH THE EXCEPTION---OF MUSIC...

what else has the power to transport you through time and space---beam
you into the presence of another---create a free fall of emotion---bring a tear, raise a hand, move your feet, bow your head

All kinds---all genres---all beats---all sounds----There is indeed POWER---MAGICAL POWER in music--

A Life Long---Magical Hold On My Soul----Has the Magical Power of Music...
A song in my head---a beat in my feet---a tune in my heart---My Forever Love-

Music

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

CROWN ME!


It's official-----GRAND # 5 is                 A BOY

Camille has declared herself       THE QUEEN

SO That must make me-----



THE QUEEN MOTHER

NO need to bow----a simple curtsy will suffice! 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

THE NEST

I've been in my new home for a year at the end of this week.  MY HOW TIME HAS FLOWN---and NOT FLOWN!  I was looking around today and realized I really have not done anything to the inside of the house since moving last year.  My friends came and helped me paint the part of the house that I would be "living in" and then one of the church younger small groups moved all my furniture after I moved each and every box by myself.  And then I just stopped--there are things that I said I would do---they have not gotten done--it's like I am on hold---holding for what I'm not sure!  

On the BRIGHT side--I have worked in the yard and improved it.  MAYBE---Just MAYBE---I'll get to work again----it will all come together with time.

Monday, August 13, 2012

ADVENTURE FREAK!

I am reading Lost which is a story of a solo trek of the PCT.  INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT--is an understatement.  ALONE--grueling physical trek---wilderness---hiking from Mexico to Canada.  There is WAY too much personal drama in the book for my taste---HEY I've got my own personal drama, but the sections of the book that focus on the trek---are intriguing.  Dirty beyond description----in the company of bears and mountain lions and rattlesnakes----and yet---for some bizarre reason---I started thinking---

"Could I do this?"

What's wrong with me----I should be thinking---"I'm too old to do this"---"I don't like to be that dirty"--"Bears will eat you--snakes will bite you---"Dehydrated Food-  YUCK!"

But there is still a part of me that goes---WOW--what an adventure that would be!  NEVER said I wasn't slightly crazy!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

THE EASY WAY TO TRAVEL

After the Facebook Dictator changed my format to the new "Timeline"---(I just thought I lived in a democracy!).  I began playing around with it.  Well that had this "map" thing---I thought---"Hey let's see if I can put all the places I've been!"  Turns out---they post that you are "ON THE SPOT" at that particular moment.  After a blur of about 20 map punches--I get a message from #1 Son  

"You've had a busy morning!"

SO people---you don't even have to leave the comfort of your recliner---just go to your facebook page and click away---you can tour the world in one short morning---AND never even have to pack a bag or go through security.  HOW COOL IS THAT!


Friday, August 10, 2012

ALWAYS IN THE MIDDLE

My sweet brothers---and there I am in the middle----as always!  If you comment about who is the oldest-----you will be blocked from the blog!  Robbie---the oldest---LOVES to meet a stranger when we are together and ask them "Who do you think is older?"  He is SO FUNNY!

Noel--the baby---ALWAYS was Momma's Baby---but I understand now since Camille will ALWAYS be my baby and helps to clarify why my Daddy's Mother and his siblings always called him "Baby".  It's a "Family Thing"----I finally understand!

It's not always easy being in the middle--but I would not trade them for anything!  They are sweet and supportive and they are---well they are My Brothers!  Robbie told me one time that I was "The Shepherd" of the family.  I looked at him and responded 'I don't remember applying for that job!"  It just happens----it's a birth order--gender thing.  I want us to be a family---I deeply love them and their families and would do anything for them.

We have had our share of family drama---illnesses---deaths---marriages---babies---LIFE!  So BLESSED to be on the "James Team" together!  Life is still hard---lots going on --Noel's wife is very ill----but what would it be if we didn't have each other?  We understand each other and know "Where we came from"---helps to explain who we are!

On a more serious note---I HATE to be the one to report that a CERTAIN Federal Judge could NEVER resist hitting me EVERY TIME he walked by me until he left for college!  Now HIS SIDE of the story is that I would just yell "MOMMA---he hit me!"  with NO reason--just to see him get in trouble.  Perhaps I MIGHT have done that once or twice---but I am CERTAIN he was sitting there planning his next punch--so I just beat him to the punch!  I am happy to say the physical abuse ended once we went to college---but his childish WHOOPS--I meant childlike humor remains in tact!

LOVE my brothers!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

MARION--COULD I BE A TRUCK DRIVING WOMAN?

LOTS of miles in a very short period recently!  Left Friday-2 weeks ago and drove "The Girls" to the beach-----NOT that I am a control freak or anything like that--but I insisted on driving.  NOW for all those that think girls are Sissy-s---ONE of our crew drove her Harley down there and back. GREAT TIME and I would tell you all that happened, but have taken a vow of secrecy-so I would have to kill you all.  No stories---NO pics---you'll just have to come with us next time if you want to know!

Saturday night I get a text that #1's appendix had ruptured and he is in the hospital.  I was ready to fly out---but for some strange reason they insisted I stay put.  It MIGHT be that my propensity to question doctors has gotten out---HEY  I've watched LOTS of medical reality shows!

Tuesday, I drive us back---you need to understand about being with a van load of women---we never saw a bathroom or place to eat---that didn't deserve our scrutiny!  It took a LONG time to get there and back.  When alone---I am a pedal to the metal--stop only for national emergencies---but you go with the flow when with a group.

Wednesday I get up early--go to work---leave immediately after work and drive to Austin---I needed to put my EYEBALLS on #1.  Actually stayed put Thursday---but Friday AM took #1 & #2 Grands on a road trip to see #3 & #4 in Fort Worth.  Saw "The Cousins" and out of Momma's hair for a couple of days while Dad is slowly recovering.  Drive to Weatherford Saturday for a day trip to "The Jennings Spa & Resort".  Drove the boys back to Austin Sunday and after an hour of recuperation--drove home to R.

My sweet friend, Marion is a LONG haul truck driver---she will be calling me to go to work once she reads this---NOW---I just need to come up with a "Handle" for my CB!

Monday, August 6, 2012

QUEST TO BE A FAST GIRL---

I've talked about how ALL the fast girls have pony tails----WELL    # 1 Daughter told me about an article she had read concerning the Olympics and the Fashion Statement that many of the athletes were making.  You KNOW---to be a REALLY GOOD gymnast---you need those clips to hold your hair back and a little glitter---well a LOT of glitter---on your hair---on your face---on your eyelids----JUST PUT ON THE GLITZ.  Hopefully they avoid all security check points while wearing the hair armor----

The equestrians---have the bowler helmet---long fitted coat--jodhpurs---knee high boots.  The dapper horse person would never be seen without them.

Camille pointed out that a couple of the beach volleyball girls were accused of looking like "Laundry Day at the Dorm".  You have to see it to believe it!

ANYWAY---in my quest to be a FAST GIRL---I watched the girls' races last night---SO I could go for two tone hair-----with loose waves---Lots of makeup-- and a need to constantly pull those tresses back away from my face.  SO maybe I don't need a ponytail after all just blonde/brunette hair--and the ability to high kick with my rear in the air as I place my feet on the starter's blocks!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

SHORT & SWEET

Yesterday was Momma's birthday---there's just something about those "Special Days" in our lives---I always remember---who will remember when I am gone?


Talked with my sweet baby brother today---when I got off the phone I realized one of the things I miss most now that I am alone---is someone to bounce my thoughts off of.  Trying to make wise decisions---exploring alternatives---I'll get there---but it was always helpful to have another set of ears with an objective opinion and possibly other ideas.  


He asked me why I had not been blogging---I run out of words at times---this is one of those times.

Friday, July 20, 2012

LADIES DO NOT

I spent a LOT of my formative years hearing the words:  


LADIES DO NOT


The list was LONG!  My mother was so determined to make a lady out of me!  Somewhere around the 11-12 year old age I spent a year driving an hour to a nearby town to attend
"Charm School".  WHAT you don't know what Charm School is!   You learned VERY important lessons in life---how to sit--how to stand--how to walk--how to eat---how to introduce others--ON AN ON AND ON.   WHO KNEW YOU NEEDED LESSONS FOR WHAT SEEMED TO BE A NORMAL PART OF LIVING!  


NOW---what was sad is that--I had two brothers---no girls to play with---and a father who liked for me to raise sheep/cows and ride a horse.  As a concession to Momma---I did ride English--NOT Western.  That seemed a little strange---wasn't she SO proud of her Texas roots---but that didn't mean I could be a little cowgirl---oh NO---had to be The Lady!


I must say it was VERY difficult to maintain the appearance of a lady---while shoveling poop out of the animal pins.  SO---I CAN act like a lady today---Thank You, Momma---but there will always be that Tomboy skirting around the edges and making a regular appearance!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

MOMMA'S WISDOM

Before launching into today's post---I need to clarify the last post about the Brouhaha---some things are best left unsaid---and this story is one of those.  Sorry to leave you hanging---BUT on the bright side I just LOVE words like Brouhaha and Kerfuffle---they describe themselves and you don't even have to look the definitions up.  So the next time there is a kerfuffle that leads to a brouhaha---I will restrain from posting to not cause any question.  Surely you understand what I mean?


Momma had certain rules---and those rules were to be obeyed-without question.  A stickler for cleanliness----we bathed EVERY night and she inspected you after that bath.  She always said---"Clean out your ears"----I don't know about you--but I don't spend a great deal of
time looking into other people's ears-----well unless they seem to have a lot of hair growing out of them.  I always find it amazing the places hair grows prolifically---that's another day's post.  I read a book recently called "Bearded Lady"---SO FUNNY!  I DIGRESS!


SO---what was the big deal about washing out your ears with Momma?  When my children came along---I learned never put anything larger than your elbow in their ears.  Momma never saw a Q-tip that was not meant to be rammed down your ear.  AND those washcloths that she would wrap around the point of her finger !  SO I am happy to report I had the cleanest  ears in my class---I guess---I don't really know since I never looked in anyone Else's ears.  WHAT WAS THE BIG DEAL---I don't know---she is gone---but it was a BIG DEAL!  I probably have permanent damage or wax deficiency brought on by excessive cleaning.  God would not have put that wax in there if it wasn't good for us!  But Momma golden rule was
"A clean body means a clean ear" or something like that!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

BROUHAHA

There are some words in the English language that just absolutely describe their meaning by just saying them:

BROUHAHA------Melluva hess  (Lora's def)

Today---in fact yesterday and today I was involved in a Brouhaha----I was probably the cause of the mess-

"No Good Turn Goes Unpunished"----such a true statement at times!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

TWO TO TANGO

I've been reading about friends that are having anniversaries after years of marriage and I've seen pictures this very day of friends out enjoying each others company after years of marriage.  My heart was warmed when I read of their happiness.


Years of being together brings something you cannot get from any other place---familiarity--which is NOT a bad thing.  Knowing what the other is thinking---knowing what they like---knowing before they say it what is about to come out of their mouth---knowing their likes and dislikes---that is all good.  And then the comfort of having lived life with another for a long time and walked the same road together----Good-Bad--and just Life---but always with someone to share that journey with you.  


At the end of the day----it is a blessing to have someone by your side to speak of all that there has been ---and they know and understand what you speak of.  It's not always easy to live with another---but it's very difficult to be alone.  So enjoy the blessing while you are together ---it is a gift from God -Himself.  "It is not good for man to be alone".

Saturday, July 14, 2012

ALL THE FAST GIRLS------

ALL the fast girls---have ponytails!!!  I have been watching---and it's true--they pass by with that cute little mane of hair-swishing-swishing back and forth---with their tight little rears keeping time like the pendulum on a clock---back & forth---swing swing.  They pass me by and leave me in the dust.


SO----I'm letting my hair grow out----I'm going to join the ranks of the "Fast Girls"!  It's the key----just grow those tresses----buy a package of elastic bands----


WAA LAAA

I'll join the ranks of the FAST GIRLS!

Today I am happy to report---I got my hair into a low pony tail----with the tail hanging down approximately 1/2 ".  UNFORTUNATELY---it's NOT long enough to swish/swish--

SO---I guess to be one of those pert--sassy--fast girls----it has to be longer----

SIGH---I also suffer from follicle deficiency---so don't think I will EVER have the horsey thick mane that swishes in the same cadence as those hips on most of those fast girls---

AND I did NOT notice being ANY faster today----

HOW AM I EVER GOING TO GET FASTER RUNNING????----

WAIT you thought I meant something other than RUNNING?????

SHAME ON YOU!   NEVER Occurred to me!

Friday, July 13, 2012

SUCK IT IN AND SQUEEZE!

Since # 1 daughter, hubby & #3 & #4 grands flew to the beach this year----I had to pick them up in my car.  (Don't really understand why they didn't want to drive the 13 hours and be stuck in Mobile traffic for over an hour)  ANYWAY---- this saga begins with me having to get my car seat out of the attic----re:Fireman to the rescue.  It was approximately 500 degrees (PIZZA OVEN) when I climbed those stairs and wrestled that not so light buddy down.


Then I had to put that car seat and another borrowed one in my car.  In case you wondered---not to fear---the entire car may be destroyed but those seats will not move an inch once you have hooked all those hooks and closed all those belts.  That only took a little over an hour---in my garage in the 100 degree heat!  WHAT FUN!


SO---I get to the beach a day before the Jennings crew and go pick them up early on Sunday.  I drive a small car---I knew when I bought it I was going to miss all those SUVs I've driven over the years---but it seemed the practical thing to do at the time.  Once you put the two cars seats in the back there is approximately 12" for someone to sit between them.   GUESS who got that privilege!  The SIL---a man---HAD to be in control and drive---the daughter--now expecting Grand #5 couldn't be asked to squeeze in---SO.  If you turn sideways-after crawling over a car seat to get in and hold your breath while squeezing in the widest part of your body ---it's sort of like pulling on those too tight jeans---you couldn't wear on your best day.  ANYWAY---I made it and 45 minutes later---they got the jack out of the trunk and pried me out.


When Grand # 5 comes---someone is going to have to be strapped to the roof!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A LITTLE HISTORY LESSON ON NAMES

I am currently reading an Ireland inspired book.  I learned something new---and wanted to share it with you.  The origin of the Mac, Mc, and O prefixes for names:



Irish last names reflect the long history of the island of Ireland, from the days of the Celtic High Kings through successive invaders to modern times.
Maureen O'Hara

Born Maureen FitzSimons in Dublin, the young actress
adopted the name O'Hara, an ancient Irish
last name historically found in Sligo and Antrim.




In the same article, I found that other names were derived from the occupation of the father-

The word for a blacksmith in Irish was gabhann and the occupation had long ago found its way into a common Irish last name as Mac Gabhann. A large indigenous group of Mac Gabhanns was based in Co Cavan; whether by choice or threat, their name was translated to Smith and stayed that way. Outside of Co Cavan, however, many Mac Gabhanns didn't adopt the translation. They anglicised the spelling, instead, becoming Mac/McGowans.

These names were both Irish and Scottish in origin.

SO---I guess with my Scottish/Irish roots---I should be glad the my surname is not--

Mc James-Beancounter
























They did not become hereditary, however, until the 11th century. Up to this time, and for much of the Celtic era, surnames (for want of a better term) lasted just one or two generations.
The prefix 'mac', meaning 'son of', was used. So Kieran mac Fiachra was Kieran the son of Fiachra, and his son might be Darragh mac Kieran ie Darragh the son of Kieran.
Alternatively, the prefix 'O' (or the older form 'Ua') was used to mean 'grandson of' or 'descended from'. So Kieran O'Conor was the grandson or descendent of Conor. While Oisín O'Laoghaire was a descendent of Laoghaire.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

HOW DO YOU CHANGE---

I have been thinking today about how you change your thought orientation after 40 years of being oriented a certain way.  After a long discussion about why---certain thoughts continue to reoccur----questioning thoughts---doubting thoughts---thoughts that do nothing but dredge up pain, insecurities and reinforce a negative self-image---there is no answer but time.  Perhaps time does heal all wounds---and perhaps a change in venue ------staying busy with life affirming projects----caring for those less fortunate----working harder---perhaps that is the answer.  Time will tell----God is faithful!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

JUMPING THE WAVES




I might let you stumble---

    I might let you fall-----

          But I am always there watching---

                To lend a hand and help pick you up!

Monday, July 9, 2012

FACING THE WAVES---

There are times that life is filled with waves----






We are filled with fear when looking at what is coming---and it seems we will be washed away or thrown to the bottom of the sea.  


THEN---we call for help and someone MUCH stronger reaches down and lifts us up and holds us in His arms.   Protecting us---carrying us --eventually helping us to face the wave and even enjoy the ride-----


ALL IN THE SAFETY OF HIS ARMS!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

PILLOW TALK

One of the men in my life & I had a little pillow talk one of the nights he slept with me--


"I love you, Henry."


"I love you too, Lulu.           Does that make you happy?"


"Yes--from the top of my head to the tip of my toes.   Can I put my hand on your arm?"


"I'll hold your hand, Lulu."




MELTS MY HEART!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

IT'S THE SIMPLE THINGS----









Truly it's the simple things in life-

Summer Birthday Parties With The Boys Making The Shark Cake

Reading Books

Lulu's Spaghetti

Blowing Bubbles

Shooting Water Guns

Watching the Fireworks

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

HOWLING AT THE BEACH MOON!







Day Two--the pictures say it all----WONDERFUL---only down side---SOME OF US---are up most of the night howling at the almost full moon!  

Monday, July 2, 2012

THE BEACH!!!







After NO vacation for 2 years---and NO beach for 3 years----I AM AT THE BEACH!!  My sweet friends, The Thompson's invited me and my family to their beach vacation.  Only #1 daughter and her family were able to come---but we have a BIG CREW that will be with us this week---a house full!

Here are the first day's pictures----I promise there are more with us than Adam and #3 & #4---BUT for some reason---these are the pictures that were taken.

It is Balm to my Soul to be here!