Tuesday, August 30, 2011

This and That

 Stephanie and Mindy have more things on our grocery list than we do!
 Mindy's plants that she brought over for us to "babysit" about 2 months ago. She's never taken them back home, so now they are just a pain.
 Another add-on to our grocery list. 
 I meant for this picture to go with the "creepy things" post awhile back. When Sandy was here, we made the girls get their boxes out of the attic. This is something Stephanie saved----most of the boxes turned out to be hers---she saved everything. So you can tell that they are bananas that have turned black after 35 years in the attic. Now you can see below why she saved them.
My sister, Jennifer brought these from Kuwait. Of course, this was normal for her, but to us, we had never seen American products in a foreign language. Seems silly now with all the instructions today in every possible foreign language. She still wants to keep the jar, but wants us to open it and clean it out. It's been a month and the jar still sits on our counter. I don't want to do it---I'm afraid it might explode or smell really, really bad.
 See anything unusual on this sign?

While I don't even have a bucket list---although I have something I want to put on it---I want to be part of a flash mob. I can't really think of anything else to put on it. Any suggestions? In the meantime, Mindy is all excited to be able to cross another thing off of her bucket list (skydiving was the first thing). She is now a notary!

She got her "thing" in the mail today. She goes to get sworn in tomorrow. We have no idea why she wanted this. She doesn't need it for work. Who knows. 
 But then, there's this. I asked her to get a pot of water boiling for pasta last night. I came in to the kitchen and saw this cabinet open. I went to close it, but it wouldn't. I opened it to discover this:
 I immediately called her back in to the kitchen. I reminded her that this is my house. I know that if this were hers, she wouldn't care, she'd just leave it. But seriously, you knock something down and don't bother to fix it?? I do not know who raised this girl.
This is how it's supposed to look.

Lastly, I came across this store the other day. I had no idea. All I know for sure is mom would NEVER shop here!!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

AYM/2-Heritage Pages

I really messed up today on so many different levels. I met my day group to share their layouts, make their title page and pass out the kits for next month. Right off, I realized I forgot the kits. Then, as they were sharing their layouts, everyone asked Suzanne where she got a couple things she used on her page---some oval frames and then a couple decorative squares. She said they were in her kit---and insisted that was so. I swear, I never saw those things before. Either I'm really losing it---which really scares me, or she made a mistake. I hope that's it. Then, when it came time to make the title page, I was missing the embroidery floss needed. On the way home from the retreat yesterday, I realized I had cut out the wrong word for the page. I had to quick cut new titles today. I guess that's when I managed to leave the floss behind. But, all is not lost as the girls had their layouts---and they are really good! Check them out below.

 Sally had her own cabinet cards. She loves glitter and glittered her Ancestry title. The names are glittered alphabet stickers. She made 2 little books on this page that contain her journaling. The book on the page below also contains journaling and pictures.

 Suzanne has discovered a great way to solve a problem all of us scrapbookers have---and only those scrapbookers that read my blog are going to get in on it!!! She took the ovals on her layout and taped them to her computer screen---then she typed into them---printed on vellum---then cut them out. How ingenious!!! I thought of another way to carry it one step further---make a text box slightly larger than the opening in the frame. That way you won't have to tab or space across each long line. She also center aligned her journaling so it was easier to see where it needed to end on each line. I hope that makes sense.

 Kim stamped the fleur de lis. Her journaling is going to be on a transparency mounted on top. She also used stitching on the page which was the challenge this month. Suzanne stitched too, but it didn't show up very well.
These girls are no longer beginners!!! And their stories are really good!

Storytelling Sunday---Colorado Vacation

In 1986, we rented a 26ft. R.V. with Walter and Chris. Everyone said we were nuts to have 10 people in that small of a space. We went all the way to Colorado and back. I brought a spiral notebook and had each of us---including the kids---take a day to journal about our escapades. To keep everyone happy, each person got a chance to pick a restaurant. There are many fond memories---the time Walter bought ALL the things on the McDonald's menu just because Bridget had written everything down to put "tick" marks next to whoever wanted what for their family. Butch was happy to get on the receiving end of "free" food! Or the time that Butch made a scene in a restaurant because there were ants all over the high chair that we were expected to put Mindy in. Who could forget camping along side a babbling brook that was so loud we could hardly sleep---besides the fact that we were slightly on a hill, so our bodies were in a downhill position---uphill might have been better. And I'll never forget getting "crowned" by the binoculars that vibrated out of the overhead compartment. It was not a particularly comfortable ride.

To this day, the "kids"---all grown now---remember it as our best vacation. Mindy was about 18 months old. Her favorite part was the horseback riding. She rode with Butch. You wouldn't think a "baby" would really remember much, but she sure did. Every year after that, when we went on vacation, she cried that we didn't go horseback riding. It took a couple of years, but we finally figured out that she thought vacation meant horseback riding!

The only downside to that vacation was our return home. We were robbed while we were gone. Our neighbor, thinking he was "helping", nailed our back door shut. Besides the broken window, we had to have the door repaired too! Still, if was one of the best vacations ever!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday Showtunes---I Had a Dream

Who could ever forget this performance from my favorite show of all time:

This song is also one of my ringtones on  my phone. You might remember that after I purchased it, I found out that the line that plays is: "I dreamed my life would be....so different from this HELL I'm living." Of all the beautiful lyrics this is what I got. Don't get me wrong, I love that phrase in the song, but it seems wrong for me. My life is pretty darn good---most of the time anyway.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Creepy Things

 Found this floating around in my tea maker. Now I don't think the "real" thing is visible to the naked eye, but it was creepy anyway.
The only reason I call this picture creepy is because Morgan posted it on Facebook under "summer romance." When you clicked on the album, this was the first picture to pop up. If you went further, there were, of course, tons of pictures of her and Carson. Even when I responded that I thought this was creepy, she didn't get it. Now she does, but just laughed. She has a good sense of humor. Still, a little creepy!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Hey All,
Sorry to have missed our meeting, but I am having fun in St. Louis. Went on a jaunt yesterday to find my great-great-grandmother's grave in south St. Louis only to find that she's not buried there. She arrived on Ellis Island in 1912. She was rocking my grandmother who was 15 months old at the time. She had a heart attack and died before reaching St. Louis. The man at Resurrection Cemetery thinks she must be buried in New York So I'll have to figure out where I got my information and backtrack to see if I can figure it out.

Here are the layouts from yesterday. Someone needs to let me know what the new challenge is.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Storytelling Sunday---40th Anniversary

Today is my 40th anniversary. Where in the world has the time gone? I remember Butch's proposal like it was yesterday. He was working a full time night job along with his full time day job. We used to spend a lot of time on the phone late at night. One night, he said to me, "You know, I was thinking---I think two can live as cheaply as one---you want to get married?" How romantic!! Seriously, he's not all that romantic, but he has definitely had his moments over the years---especially when it really counted. Here's a little bit of romance from Christmas, 2010---etched in to my new iPod:
But, regarding his proposal, did you pick up on the "hint" of what was to come? The comment about two living as cheaply as one...he's been thrifty from the very beginning. At least he didn't get my ring out of a Cracker Jack box! And I think in retrospect, he would now disagree with his own statement. Two cannot live as cheaply as one if one of those two is ME! He still loves me even if I spend all his money and I love him for letting me!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

For Showtune Saturday, I've picked this one from Avenue Q. It is another of my favorite plays, but don't be fooled by the muppet caharacters---it is definitely NOT for children. Have a laugh!

Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Body Facial

This post could be very long. I'm going to try to keep it brief---but that's hard for me.

I purchased a 2 hour body facial via Groupon. I've never had a body facial, but I've had many regular facials. I figured it would be the same sort of thing except for the entire body.

I arrived for my 2 hr. appointment on time. They handed me a clipboard with some papers to fill out. I did that and waited a bit---about 10 minutes. Next, a woman invited me to wait in the relaxation room---another 10 minutes. My "girl" took me into the room and stepped out while I undressed---another 10 minutes---like how long do they think stripping takes? Surely no longer than a 3 minute song---not that I have first hand experience.

She returned and started on my face---cleanser first, then mask---then sitting for another 10 minutes. Clean that off, sandy scrub, another mask---10 more minutes. Cleanse, something else put on and under the steam---about 10 more minutes. I was wondering if she was reading a book or something. I thought she could be working on another part of my body while waiting, but she didn't. Also, I should mention that she was sniffling like she had a cold. I sure hope it was just allergies or I'm due for a doozie pretty soon.

One thing she really spent a lot of time scrubbing was that little "nook" where my nose meets my face. It must have been really dirty because she scrubbed it really hard about 3 separate times. Next time, if anyone notices that I'm dirty there, please tell me. Made me wonder how bad that looked.

I was starting to get pretty cold, so I asked if she had a blanket or another sheet. She said that she was going to start the body scrub soon, so that would get my circulation going. Within another minute or so, I was shivering uncontrollably. Either she didn't notice, or didn't care. She had to have heard my teeth chattering.

When she started the body scrub, it's a darn good thing I had my eyes closed. That sand was flying everywhere. She did the whole thing really fast, had me turn over and did the rest really fast too---I'd say, less than 5 minutes for my whole body. After she scrubbed me down, she told me it was time to take a shower. The shower was in the same room, but no bathroom. Let's just say that I was in a very uncomfortable position. I took the shower and dressed quickly.

When I left the room, I checked my phone. The entire thing took 1 hour and 45 minutes. Not only did I NOT get a 2 hr. body facial, I think by the time you figure out all the "hands off" time, I'd say the whole thing was about 15 minutes.

A total rip off. I'm finding out that these Groupons aren't all they're cracked up to be.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Worry Warts

I have several friends who are worriers. Pam worries about everything (and always has), but she is obsessed about the weather. She checks the weather every day. When we travel together, she gives me daily weather updates. Last week, she couldn't sleep for worrying about the threat of rain on Anna's wedding day. That's not something I ever worry about. I wake up in the morning and if it looks like rain, I figure I'll take my umbrella. By the way, the weather was gorgeous all day the day of the wedding---contrary to the weathermen's reports. I don't know how anyone could worry about our weather---our weathermen are ALWAYS wrong.

Connie is a worrier too. She says she also worries about everything. She says it's getting so bad, she might need medication. I'll drive her to the doctor!

Considering I was never a worrier, I must admit, the older I get, the more I worry. I worry about the grandkids far more than I ever worried about my own kids. I don't like it. I agree with Connie, I think it's getting worse. The only good thing for me is that I have a long way to go to catch up with my friends---since I started so late to the worry game. Whenever I start to worry, it makes matters worse that I think by worrying or even thinking about something will jinx me and it will actually happen. I try to brush the thoughts away.

A perfect example:
On Sunday night, at 10:10 p.m., the phone rang. It was Mindy, except she wouldn't answer. I could hear her tv in the background. I couldn't get her to respond. I hung up and called her back---it went to voicemail. I started imagining her laying on the floor in her apartment having been attacked by some crazy and trying to get help. This is a completely idiotic scenario as NO BAD GUY would trek the 5 steep flights of stairs to get to the top floor of her building. I'm sure he'd go for easier prey on a lower floor. Still, as I was trying to decide if I should get in the car and head to her place, the phone rang again. It was her, but still no response. I could still hear the tv. I hung up once again and redialed. This time, she answered, all sleepy and ANNOYED at ME!!!! She was sleeping and apparently "butt dialed" me. (Butt dialing is when you roll on your phone and speed dial is activated). Anyway, she was totally fine and I worried needlessly. But it's sort of like the boy who cried wolf. How many times can this happen before I will always think it's a false alarm. Then how will I ever know when she is in trouble!!

I'll say it again, I don't like it. I feel really bad for my friends that live this way all the time. At least for me, it's not a constant state.

I looked it up. The definition for worry is:
"give way to anxiety or unease;."

I saw a quote on one of the blogs I follow that really said it best:
"Worry is using your imagination in a negative way."

 I try really hard not to be negative, so I'll keep working on this. Now that's what I'm talkin' about.

PS Our friend, David Bohan said it best on our Alaskan cruise. He said that if I received a box of s**t for Christmas, I'd say, "There must be a pony around here somewhere!"

Yep, that's how I like to live---in my happy little optimistic, worry-free world.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cleo the Cat

Today I've decided to tell you the story of our cat Cleo that was the victim of the pet food poisoning a few years ago.

Everyone knows that I am in no way an animal lover. That dates back to losing our beloved boxer, Shadow, when we were kids. Maybe that's the story I should tell. Here goes---all of us kids loved Shadow. She was a good and gentle dog. I took her to Camp Hawk and entered her in the dog show. She came in 3rd for the "obedience" division.  I came home proudly with the ribbon. Dad was excited too. He asked, "how many dogs were entered?" I replied, "3",  he got a kick out of that, but I didn't really get it until I was a little older.

One Sunday, when we had some sort of family gathering---most likely someone's first Communion---Shadow was eating. Her "clipped" tail never stopped wagging. Our little cousin, Jon was trying to hold Shadow's tail when she turned around and snapped at him. He started howling---even though he hadn't been bitten. My Uncle Jules got pretty worked up. I guess it was the next day or so that dad told us we had to get rid of Shadow. He said that with so many kids in our house (there were 6 of us then) he could not take the chance that Shadow might bite one of us.

He thought that he had the perfect solution. We had a grandmotherly type babysitter (Mrs. Turco) who loved Shadow. She took her. The problem was that she lived in a subdivision. We lived in a neighborhood with an empty lot across the street. This is where Shadow was trained to "take care of business." As a result she would not "go" in the Turco's yard. It wasn't long that their neighbors started to complain. They tried tying her up behind the garage, but she just wouldn't "go." After several days, they took her down to the river where she swam, "let it loose" and ran around. When it was time to leave, they called to her, but she took off running---never to be seen again. At least this is the story that we kids were told. Who knows what really happened to our beloved Shadow. All I know is that I cried for a couple of weeks. But even at 10 years old, I remember telling myself, "this is ridiculous, it's just an animal." I think that is when I hardened my heart to animals.

We had 2 other dogs, "Jock" the poodle who puked and peed everywhere and "Butch" a really dumb mutt. Not to be confused with "my" Butch who isn't dumb at all---in fact, he's pretty darn smart. With Butch the dog, all we had to do was attach the rope to his collar (which wasn't tied to anything) and the stupid dog thought he was tied up, so never tried to leave! You can tell that I didn't care much for either of those dogs.

Which brings me to the present. Over the years, we've had our fair share of assorted "little" pets, hamsters, birds and fish. We had many outside cats. That was the best I could do. I just feel like inside pets are so unsanitary. Of course, the cats served a purpose. They kept the mice away. My friend, Nancy once observed, "Barb, even the cats have to work at your house." Yep, that's about the size of it.

Anyway, our last cat, Cleo was acting sort of funny. Of course, Butch was out-of-town. I put her in a box and took her to pet emergency. When I was filling out the medical forms, it was pretty embarrassing. I didn't even know her vet or her immunization records. I just made up stuff. I was never involved in any of that. I simply didn't care about our cats. Or at least I didn't think so. When the doctor came out to talk to me about Cleo, I started to tear up. He told me that she was in extreme kidney failure and was in shock. He started telling me what he could do and how much it would cost. Amidst my tears, I got my wits about me and tearfully said, "just let her go." I was reminded of the time that mom spent $18.00 trying to save Jeanne's guinea pig, Bruno to have him die anyway. 18 bucks back in the 60's was equal to hundreds today.

I paid to have Cleo cremated, but didn't want the ashes. On the way home, I called my friend, Linda, who has a cat. I was sobbing and said, "see, I'm not quite the animal hater everyone thinks I am. Even without interaction, I become attached. I've always said if someone told me I had to have an indoor pet, I'd choose a cat. They don't shed, they don't fart or have bad breath, they don't smell your crotch or hump your leg, or do all the other horrible things that dog owners are always telling stories about.

About a month later, Butch was reading the newspaper and came across the article about the tainted pet food. Bingo---we were feeding Cleo that same pet food. We sent a letter along with the $400 vet bill and requested reimbursement. The company responded and asked for more information. Eventually, they denied our claim. We thought that was the end of it. A couple weeks ago, we got this:
I don't know if you can read it, but we got a check for $207.21. A nice little surprise. Seems we were part of one of those class action suits.

$207. sure goes a long way in easing the pain of losing my cherished cat. Notice how Cleo became mine? It's no wonder I hardened my heart at 10! Losing pets is really painful. We haven't had another cat since. We keep telling ourselves that even an outdoor cat is a hassle. We travel quite a bit and would still have to have someone come by to feed it. But, we might have to give in soon.

The mice are back!!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Saturday Showtunes

Every Saturday, I'm going to post a showtune clip. Mindy sang this one for an audition at St. Cecilia Academy when she was in high school:


Friday, August 12, 2011

Guest Blogger

Now and then, I'm going to invite someone to be a guest blogger. My first guest is Mindy. She thought she might resurrect her blog, but she simply does not have the time. Hopefully, this will be a way for her to keep us entertained in a style that only Mindy can. Enjoy!

Once upon a business trip not too long ago…

My boss never travels with us on business. However, on one particular occasion shortly after I was hired, he came along. As luck (bad luck ,that is) would have it, his room was right next to mine. One night, upon finishing my room service dinner, I went to place my tray in the hallway like any conscientious hotel visitor.

Carefully placing the chain lock between the door and its frame so that it wouldn’t shut behind me is what any expert traveler (or anyone with an IQ greater than a desk lamp) would have done. Not me. Instead, carefully juggling the tray with a half-full water pitcher and the unnecessary amount of utensils and dishes they had given me with my meal, I slung the door open as hard as I could with my foot and then sprinted to the side to set my tray against the wall as quickly as possible so as to get back inside before the door closed… no such luck. I turned around just in time to see my hotel door shut and lock (I may or may not have also done one of those futile slow motion lunges toward it like they do in the movies—but it’s all really a blur). Rookie mistake.

I stood there stunned for a minute and then frantically began jiggling my door handle (knowing full well that it wasn’t going to open, but still unprepared to consider my other options). Only as I came to terms with the fact that I was going to have to go downstairs to the front desk to request a new key did I become fully aware of exactly what I was wearing: An extra large Indy 500 t-shirt with neon-colored race cars on it, and Victoria’s Secret pajama bottoms with 6-inch sparkly pink letters across the butt (and it goes without saying that I was also shoe-less, bra-less, and make-up-less as well). At this point I was even madder at myself for what I was wearing than I was for letting my door lock right in front of me. I don’t care what my Dad has tried to teach me for the past 26 years: screw comfort, life is a fashion show and this proves why!

All I could think about was the possibility of my boss walking out of his room at any moment and seeing me standing in the middle of the hallway in my pajamas. How would I explain myself if he did? I didn’t know if it would be better to explain that I accidentally locked myself out of my hotel room because I’m a dumbass or to say that I always roam hotel hallways in my pajamas at night. Surely he would fire me either way. Heck, at this point I was about to fire myself… from society!

As I considered the logistics of getting down to the lobby to request a new key, I stood in the doorframe of my room pressed against the oh-so-slightly recessed door hoping that I would go unnoticed if anyone (heaven forbid—my BOSS) walked down the hallway. In hindsight, even my forearm was wider than the indented doorway… and my neon t-shirt and sparkly pink pants wouldn’t go unnoticed at a Prince concert. But my Mission-Impossiblesque stance seemed like a good idea at the time.

After a few minutes of avoiding the inevitable, I knew what I had to do: I had to make a break for it. I had to get to the lobby as quickly as possible, hopefully avoid all human contact (except for the front desk clerk), get a new key and get back to the comfort of my own hotel room (without losing every last shred of dignity, if at all possible). Easy enough? Of course not.  Was my room on the 1st or 2nd floor? No, I was so high up I practically needed an oxygen tank. Even if I made it to the elevator unnoticed (which, given my luck up until this point, was entirely too optimistic), I would have to wait for the elevator to make its way to me atop Mt. Everest, and then risk stopping on any/all of the 465,372 floors on the way down. Was my room at least right next to the elevator so that I wouldn’t have to run through my entire floor to get there, even if I had a long way down once I did? No, my room and the elevator shaft were basically in different zip codes. I didn’t even know how I was going to get to the elevator without GPS. And, finally, the cherry on top of this sundae of unfortunateness was that my destination, the hotel lobby, also housed a giant sports bar that was open from all 360 degrees, and, as far as I could tell, the most “happening” place in this whole Floridian suburb.

I counted to three and then made my move. To my surprise and delight, I made it to the elevator with Chris-Johnson-like speed and agility (circa 2009/2010 season, not so much 2010/2011 season). In an even more surprising turn of events, there was a phone next to the elevator (could it be that I could actually make it through this whole ordeal without anybody but the hotel staff knowing about it?!?)! The phone had only one big red button, so I ascertained that it was some kind of emergency line. I didn’t know who it would dial, but I didn’t care: if this wasn’t an emergency, I didn’t know what was. A female answered with a concerned tone. I explained the gist of my predicament (trying not to sound as panicked or frantic as I actually was) and told her my room number. She said she would send someone right up. Great! I sprinted back to my door and again tried to hide in my doorway. There (where, as was determined earlier, I was in no way actually “hidden”), I waited for what seemed like forever (but not just normal “forever,” “forever” like if you had to spend the rest of your life watching nothing but reruns of “The Simple Life”).

Upon realizing that no one was coming, I knew I was going to have to repeat the whole mortifying process. This time, when I got to the phone, the same girl answered giggling, “oh my gosh, I totally forgot!” Seriously? She ‘forgot?’ SERIOUSLY?!? I thought of all people another female would understand the magnitude of my situation! No longer trying to sound calm and collected, I yelled, “Listen, I am barefoot, in my pajamas, bra-less, and locked out of my room ONE DOOR DOWN FROM MY NEW BOSS. Send. Someone. Now. I seriously cannot come down there!”

A few moments later, someone arrived to let me in. Against all odds I made it through the incident with minimal embarrassment. But I did learn a valuable travel lesson that will be the first one I shall bestow on you:

Mindy’s travel tip #1: Never EVER set even one foot outside your hotel room without your key in hand… and, if you do, make darn sure you are wearing something reasonably fashionable.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Geo-Caching and Antique Shopping

We decided to go to Lebanon, TN yesterday for some geo-caching and antiquing. Morgan and Carson came with us. They did the geo-caching with Butch while I did the antiquing. This is a tourist mecca for antiquing----and the prices reflected that. I was pretty disappointed, but did manage to find one thing---the blue vase shown below.

I finished before they did, so they picked me up. We went to 3 more caches before stopping for lunch. You cannot geo-cache without a "boy." They aren't afraid to stick their hands in to spidery webby, buggy, dirty type places. I need to wear gloves.
 Carson's hands were all dirty, rusty----doesn't show up so well in the picture.
 Butch left it up to us to decide where to go for lunch. I haven't had White Castles in a couple of years, so I picked---Morgan and Carson were okay with that. Since when did the burgers become sliders? Butch convinced me to combine our combos and share. He wanted fish and I wanted burgers. I got the 4 pack and gave him 2. He got the 2 pack and gave me 1. I decided that although the fish was good, it's just not right to have fish at White Castle. In the future, it will be burgers only for me.

A nice thing I noticed---Carson opens the car door for Morgan and got her drink at WC---and even offered to get her another when she didn't like the taste of the Mr. Pibb. What a nice kid! Besides that, what guy would want to spend the day with his girlfriend's grandparents? He spends a lot of time here with her and we love it!
My one and only "find." It's supposed to be a vase, but it's pretty shallow---more like a gravy boat. Now, to find a place to put it...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The garden during the dog days is....

...all a facade! Form a distance, the yard and garden looks beautiful. But it's all an illusion. When you get up close, it doesn't look so great. There's nothing much to cut and bring in the house for color. Luckily we have large flowering trees and bushes---crepe myrtles, magnolias and rose of sharon---none of which make good cut flowers. I just have to enjoy them in the yard and from the windows in the house. 

This view from the side yard looks like it would make a pretty painting. Jordan's the aspiring artist in the family. I should ask her to try her hand at this.
 On the left and in the distant middle are fuscia crepy myrtles. On the left in the rear are white crepe myrtles. On the fence are assorted clematis---already past their bloom time.
 Knock out roses from a distance.
 Looking from the pool into the shade garden. Annabelle hydrangeas under the magnolia tree on the right. Large ostrich ferns at the entrance to the shade garden.

My knot garden has some issues, but it gives me a little sense of English charm. The mirror image is on the other side of the steps. True knot gardens are made with boxwoods and herbs. In the scorching southern summers, we do the best we can with boxwoods and little sticker bushes (you can assume here that I have forgotten what they are called---that really frustrates me).
 Close up of the pond shows the "ugly" bulbous part of the water hyacinths. But if I didn't take a close up shot, you wouldn't be able to see our goldfish. We restocked them after the blue heron ate the big ones. These were tiny feeder goldfish, but they've grown pretty much. They should over-winter just fine. We'll see how many survive to next year.
 The water garden looks much prettier from a distance. And you can catch a glimpse of the window boxes in the background.
The water hyacinths are really pretty, but only bloom for one day. Luckily, we have enough that there are 4 or 5 blooms every day.

 This is what the clematis looks like close up. Not so pretty.
And the knock out roses---not so pretty close up.

 And the beautiful crepe myrtles are very messy.  That's okay by me.

This mess gets in the pool, but it really doesn't bother me that much. It's worth it to have such pretty color in the yard from July through November---when everything else is burned up.

Monday, August 8, 2011

I Have a Confession to Make

I'm watching "Bachelor Pad!" There, I've admitted it. It's a totally trashy show, but I can't resist watching it. When you've watched the "Bachelor" and "Bachelorette," you know ALL the characters on the"Bachelor Pad." I just have to watch it. All the drama---it's intriguing to see what's going to happen next. I'm sure that Vienna and Jake will be on for a long time to keep the drama going. They were engaged and had a very public break-up. The sparks are going to fly!

And in my defense, there's not a darn thing on tv anyway---even with 100+ channels.

MItchell's 'stache

I was sitting on Mitchell's right, when I noticed he had quite a 'stache going. I asked him if he shaved now. He said, "Yes, about once a week." Victoria piped up, "Mitchell, you do not. You only shaved once with dad." He responded, "Victoria, it's not like I say, 'hey everybody, I'm going to shave now.' I just do it." She said, "No you don't." He was getting exasperated with her, but just decided to ignore her. You have to do that with little sisters most of the time. As much as she might drive him crazy, he teases her too.

In order to change the subject, he said, "Hey grammy, do you like the "soul patch" action I have going?" I replied honestly, "hmmm, I can't really see it, Mitchell!" I then asked the question that I knew was the kiss of death---"can I take your picture?" He said that he would not willingly take a photo of his 'stache that I could post on my blog. Below are my efforts---to no avail! Unfortunately, by the time he realizes I'm ready to snap the shot, he has time to turn and hide. I need a quicker camera.

I caught him unawares here, but I was a little too far away. The kid is huge---probably 6ft. now, with huge hands and feet---but about as skinny as a bean pole. And he eats everything in sight. He'll be 15 in October. All of our grandkids are growing up so fast! It's so hard to believe. Kind of sad too...