Friday, February 16, 2018


Remember man that you are dust. And unto dust you shall return.

And so it is.
I begin this Lent with personal and difficult reminders that we are but dust.
I did receive a cross of ashes on my forehead on Wednesday, the day of the horrific school shooting in a high school in Florida.

On Thursday morning I helped with a funeral of an old parishioner and friend. A former FBI agent.
His funeral was poorly attended. 
He had a nice official police escort to his burial place. 
Police cars and motorcycles. 
Several State Trooper vehicles. 
And sirens. 
Other than that and the hearse, there may have been 3 other vehicles that traveled to witness his interment. 

On Thursday afternoon I learned of the death of our church organist. She was only a few years older than me. Her only child is the age of my children. 
Shock and a heavy heart have been my companions this last 24 hours.
I will help with her funeral on Monday.

The words I used to hear when I received the ashes on my forehead on Ash Wednesday weigh heavy.
And yet...
Over years the words have morphed into something different. 
The emphasis is not on death, but on living the Gospel. 
So, life. And hope.  

Forty days in the desert.
Easter will come.


Friday, February 9, 2018

Living proof.

Our church directory proofs arrived via email today. We kinda liked them and actually purchased some. Don't remember zackly which ones we bought. But here are some samples of the sitting...

This is us. 

It may be a fun weekend. Starting out tonight - we are party hopping. Going from an annual draw down for a local retreat center to a big band dance to round out the night. (I even bought a fancy dress today that was on sale to wear to the gala tonight.) The leader of the band has been frail for going on, at least, 3 years. He actually fired Hospice and has been the energizer bunny. He just keeps going....every year we attend thinking it will be his last. And it isn't. 

Tomorrow we head south to visit Out-of-Town-Son and our wonderful DIL and sweet Cc. 
I have finished the afghan for the new baby and will deliver it. 

The weather will not dampen our spirits. 


Sunday, February 4, 2018

Football, chili, and movies.

Are you mostly satisfied with what you have? 
I can honestly say that I am. Mostly.
It doesn't mean I don't want things and stop going shopping.
But. When asked what is my favorite car, my response is "the one that is paid for". 
My current vehicle will be 10 years old to me in March of this year. It is still in very good condition.
I hope I can get, at least, 2 more years out of it. 
In the mean time, we are about to pay off Macho's truck. Yip. Ee. 
It is the best. I don't like having payments. Ten years ago, when I "retired" we hit the goal of paying off our house. That was a great feeling. 
Super Bowl Sunday.
I don't have a dog in the fight. 
Macho is pulling for the Eagles, for lack of a favorite team.
I'm leaning toward Brady and the Patriots. I haven't gotten on the "I hate the Patriots" band wagon.
Not sure I really understand all that, except for the "deflate-gate" fiasco. 
Tom needs to win and retire. Let the next hero have his day. 
Anyway, we will watch (1) the game (2) the commercials (3) halftime show...
I am cooking a big ass pot of chili. Probably the best I ever cooked. 
(I say that every time. The best pot I ever cooked = the one in front of me.)
Tomorrow the leftovers will feed some hungry people in our Loaves & Fishes soup kitchen.
Win - win. 
So, in the last two weekends I have attended 4 movies. I know right?! Like, wow! I am out there just being the movie buff. Getting caught up in the Oscar season. And. There are more I want to go see. You can say that I am helping the economy. I'm spending that tax cut money at the theater! 

I got to spend the day with Daughter yesterday. Weeks and weeks ago she suggested we see the movie "Lady Bird" together after hearing it advertised as "the movie you need to see with your mother".
After watching the trailer - I avoided watching/reading any more about it. Daughter didn't even watch the trailer. 
The movie didn't disappoint. We both felt like we lived a year during the watching. We laughed. We cried. We saw ourselves in parts of the characters - both as parent and child. 
We both left the viewing exhausted. 
Teen years, growing up, high school can be brutal. Parenting can be brutal. 
Divine guidance, soft hearts, and the right friends can ease the path. Still in all you have to make your mistakes and keep faithful to your heart. You have to figure out how to overcome rejection. You have to figure out that you can forgive, too. 

Daughter, I love you beyond measure. I made mistakes and didn't always do my best as your mother. But. I always believed in your ability to do what you set your heart and mind to. I have learned that you are incredible in your capacity to see high value in embracing diversity. I hope that I didn't damage your wings too badly and still hope that you soar to your highest height. 

Two words. 
Insomnia. Cookie. 
(Insert thumbs up here.)


Friday, February 2, 2018

Weather report.

After being warm enough to not wear a coat yesterday we are back to freezing. On Groundhog Day. I am not complaining, well I sort of am.

February came in funky. Out of Town Son hit a deer first thing yesterday morning. His truck has many miles on it. He has put off buying a new truck. He might have to out of necessity now. Sorry about that.

Beach Boy has the drama going on at his school. Head coach reassigned, without his consent. New head coach named two weeks after the reassignment, one week after the job was posted. I smell a rat.

Daughter has had a delightful week at her new job.

The afterglow from last weekend has kept me on an even keel all week. Our garden club speaker got the flu. We had our meeting anyway, and it was delightful. Sometimes impromptu works. We even sang Happy Birthday to our 92 year old member, Ms Gene. She is precious.

Enjoyed a pizza with some good friends last night. We were checking out the live music to see if it was danceable. Not so much.

Mr. Macho wants to see a western movie tonight. Tomorrow I am going to watch a coming of age film with Daughter.

For such a long time in my part of the state, the locals did not celebrate Mardi Gras. Now the Protestants are getting on board with Lent and some people actually have Mardi Gras events. 
I have brought some Mardi Gras to myveryown neighborhood. In the trees and on my mailbox! 
Let the good times roll.

I found all this money on my walk yesterday. It makes me think of my Dad, he got such a big kick out of me finding pennies on the ground so often.  As always, when I find the money, it goes into my poor box. 

Senior Mass and brunch this morning. Always a good time. I made my special muffins to contribute. 
They are so yummy and have tons of good ingredients...I start with a basic zucchini bread recipe and add carrot, apple, raisins, coconut, walnuts, lots of cinnamon. 

Happy weekend evahbody. 

Monday, January 29, 2018

Let the good times roll.

Sister Paulette celebrated 70 years last week. Her daughters manufactured a surprise party for her. Only 2 out of 9 siblings could not make the trip. 
We met in a parking lot around the corner from her house. A boom box pulled in a wagon played Mardi Gras music. We made our way to her front door and her grandchildren knocked. 
She was blown away with surprise! The surprise just kept dawning on her as she saw the faces in the crowd. She called each name with excitement and hugged the neck of each one of us. 
Then. We paraded.
On several streets and corners there were more friends to meet us.
We toasted the birthday girl in the parking lot of First Baptist Church! 
More friends and more friends joined until we ended up at the downtown venue. 

Mardi Gras decorations provided by the daughters kept us in high spirits. 
The place filled with Sister Paulette's friends. The noise and happy mood were loud. Wine and beer flowed. 
Jambalaya, muffuletta pasta salad, crawfish dip, and more were enjoyed by all. Dark chocolate cake and brownies cover in ganache topped off the meal. 
A most successful evening. 
Followed by a Sunday of catching up and visiting more with sisters.
Have so enjoyed having guests over the weekend. 
And the party isn't over. 
More fun and visiting today.
Daughter begins her new career chapter today.
She is gonna rock this. 

Shalom, y'all. 

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


A yummy meal prepared last week. Little brother gifted us some fish filets. I pan fried these and served them with broccoli and a new lemon rice recipe I found on Pinterest. I had some store bought Remoulade sauce that I served with the fish. Not sure I like the sauce, it was very horseradish-y. A bit too much. Other than that the meal was fine. 

Had to stop working on this shawl over the weekend when I ran out of yarn (of this color). I had occasion to stop by the HobLob today and replenish and will be wrapping this one up by the weekend.

More Pinterest recipes! This one was a one dish meal - Tuscan chicken mac & cheese. It was pretty good. It made a huge amount. We've eaten it twice this week with another dish full stashed away in the deep freeze.

Speaking of deep freeze. We are in it. I went to the Y yesterday morning and it wasn't snowing. 
Then it was. This was on my windshield when I finished exercising. My girlfriend lunch was cancelled and I spent the day happily cleaning bathrooms and steam mopping the back house. 
I kind of did something to my back on Monday and so wore the old back brace most of the day yesterday. It is all better. 

Hot chocolate was enjoyed on the day it snowed. 

I didn't really have any one to play with. And. There wasn't enough snow to do anything with. But I did run out and snap this picture in the morning. It snowed for most of the day but this was all the accumulation we saw. 

Snow still around today. We woke up to 8 degrees with it feeling like -6 this morning. But. 
The sun was shining today. I got to town and ran all kinds of errands. But.
It was K-O-L-D! 

I've warmed up some turkey gumbo out the freezer and added a few shrimp. 
That should warm our bellies tonight.

Peace out. 

Sunday, January 7, 2018


Life has returned to ordinary. Isn't that grand? Yes. 
Last weekend we deconstructed Christmas. All but the Nativity.
Today? The kings have arrived with their gifts. 
And. The Nativity will go back into hibernation. 

We ate in the New Year with tradition. Pork chops, cornbread, peas, and greens grown in our very own garden. These will be the last harvest. I pulled up the plants. May good health and luck and wealth be ours throughout this New Year! 
And also with you. 

Tuesday Daughter asked could the Super Carrot come for a night. Or two. 
School was out until the next Monday. 
And so.
She brought her own entertainment. We watched the movie together and then it was on.
For the next three days we sang songs from the movie every spare minute. 
She is the singing-est girl ever. There are certain musicals that she knows all the words to all the songs. Thank goodness she has her talent down for when she is in that Princess America contest!

We baked Old Fashioned Teacakes together. The first day we made them large. And very decorated.
The second day we baked the remainder of the dough and used smaller cookie cutters. 

Thursday we had fun running errands and meeting the new church secretary by the name of - wait for it - Annie! It was love at first sight. We knew we had to make cookies for her! And Fr. Jeffrey. And Ms Jennifer. We also got to spend some of the Chick-fil-A gift card that was burning a hole in her pocket. But not before a leisure trip to the Walmart and the purchase of a much coveted tiara! She wore it pretty constantly and already knew how to wave with it on! Her mom taught her. 

The cookies and personalized cards were delivered on Friday. This girl had a great time at the senior Mass and Brunch. Lots of positive attention and deviled eggs and donuts until she was sated. 
It was a win. 

She was dropped off and the half way meeting spot Friday afternoon. And she is missed. 
It is good having a little body around to tuck in at night and hug in the morning.
She is such a good house guest. 

Last week on my initial vacuum duty after putting up the decorations I discovered "the book". It is a facts of life book that Out-of-Town-Son and I have fun hiding in each other's house/car/suitcase/whatever. He never would read it while growing up...and so the game. Last time I discovered it in the freezer. The kids told me it had been in there nearly a year. While everyone was here for Christmas I had taken it out...and then it disappeared while I wasn't looking. So when I vacuumed under the chair - there it was. Who knows where it will show up next!

Yesterday I was cleaning under those same chairs and look what else was under there. 
Always fun after the crowd has been here to see what hidden treasure shows up. 

The year holds so much promise. A new life will be born into our family. A nephew will get married. Just last night a niece got engaged! Much to anticipate. Much to celebrate. 
Much to be thankful for.