Wednesday, April 28, 2010

If the Griswolds Planned a Wedding . . . .

To paraphrase Clark W. Griswold in the movie Christmas Vacation, "We did it."

But our family made the Griswolds look like amateurs in the mishap department!

She was the most beautiful, and definitely the happiest, bride ever to stroll down an aisle.

It's good to be home. Trying to regain a little adrenaline. Details to follow.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My Baby's Bittersweet Journey in the Circle of Life

These are photographs that sat on my office desk some 28 years ago until I had the privilege 3 1/2 years later of leaving the practice of law to be a stay-at-home mom full-time. (Aren't those newborn hospital photos the absolute worst?)

In four short days, this precious bald-headed baby girl will stride purposefully down an aisle in a cathedral, dressed to kill, and with a death-grip on her daddy's arm, to change her name and her life.

I wish I had volumes of words of wisdom to share with her; guidance that my mother passed on to me on my wedding day. But my mother (and her mother) had already moved to heaven before my wedding day, so I had to wing it.

Plus, I don't remember a lot about my wedding day, except looking down that long, long aisle and wondering who that handsome man was standing there, grinning at me. (To be honest, he didn't grin much, because I had gotten a serious case of the inappropriate giggles the evening before at the rehearsal and he was afraid to set me off again!)

It turns out the handsome man was that fellow I had fallen in love with, and who would share a goodly number of years with me -- nearly 32 now -- through good times, scary times, funny times, and bad ones, too. The fellow who would give me that precious baby girl.

One of the scariest times we survived was nearly losing that precious baby to meningitis at eight months of age. She spent her very first Halloween on St. Vincent's pediatric floor, hooked up to an IV instead of a trick-or-treat bag. But our family was one of the lucky ones -- we got her out of the pediatric ICU and onto the regular floor in a week's time, and then we got to take her home with us another week later. We got to take her home, and she grew up happy and healthy, with only a residual, partial hearing loss as a consequence.

In four days, she and her precious fiance will exchange vows without one of their best friends and groomsman standing beside them. Last Thursday, he became one of the unlucky ones and left this Earth before they could say, "I do." Or, "goodbye."

How do you comfort a child for that loss during the week that should be among the very happiest of her life? How do you comfort a young man you've grown to love when he has to dress as a pallbearer a week before he dons his wedding tux?

As I had to wing it at my own wedding, I'm winging it today in the comfort department, too, relying on my faith and hers -- and the overwhelming love of their circle of friends. She and SIL2B#1 are trying to view this loss as part of the Circle of Life; their friend's spot in line at the altar will remain open, and his photos will sit in a place of honor at their rehearsal dinner. They will laugh and cry and celebrate life.

Then, the next day at her wedding, I'll wing it yet again as Pepper and I try to let her go. Only this time I'll be standing in the front, watching as he walks down the aisle toward me. And I'll probably wonder who that beautiful, poised young woman is; the one who is lightly grasping the crook of his arm, nearly floating beside him.

But, when she smiles at me -- that radiant smile only worn by a young bride -- I'll know who she is: she may be becoming someone's wife, and hopefully someday she'll become someone's mother, but she'll always, always be my first-born baby girl.

And she darn well better never forget that she's my baby!

Pics to come.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Your Tax Dollars At Work?

You might recall that my sweet, sainted, southern Mama once cautioned me not to say anything at all about someone if I couldn't say something nice.

But this is so funny!

I believe I will allow the billboard speak for itself.


Besides, our son is a pharmaceutical sales rep for Botox -- gotta keep up the gross!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Stolen from a Facebook Tea Partier

I don't think Governor Palin (or even Tina Fey!) could've said it better!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Tax Day Tea Party NOLA, 2010

Having had a rather rough week or two, I've shamefully neglected my blog stalking; so I've been catching up today.

Even though Thursday was pretty trying and emotionally draining for reasons that I won't go into, I did manage to make it to the Greater New Orleans Tea Party Thursday evening after making sure that our extension was filed.

(April 15th? Who can possibly get the ninety-seven pounds of documentation gathered up in one spot to get the ol' 1040 filed by April 15th? Try October 15th! If.)

I made it to the Tea Party unescorted. Pepper had, without thinking about our civic duty, made arrangements to skip out on work a little early to play golf on Thursday afternoon. And, since the thought crossed my mind that he might try to die on me again if I insisted he cancel his golf outing, I went to party with my fellow TeaBaggers unescorted. That turned out not to be a problem because the people you meet at these events are so friendly and outgoing, you're never alone unless you choose to be.

(I'm going to have to get over this mother-henning of, and automatically deferring to, my perfectly healthy, adult husband or he'll get completely out of control!)

Anyway, here are a few pics from the 2010 Metairie Tax Day Tea Party. Like my poster? And we actually got decent press this time -- radio, tv, and print!

Well, it was decent press if you ignore the deflated number of participants reported in the Times-Pic. Five hundred in attendance -- piffle. A Tea Partier acquaintance told me that his buddy in the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office (who worked the traffic detail at the Veterans Memorial and kept track of the comings and goings) estimated that close to 1,500 folks, all told, showed up. I guess the Times-Pic gave us decent coverage so we wouldn't melt the phone lines to the editor like we did back in August.

And this is a clever video I stole over at Andy's Place. Don't you just know that Anderson Cooper regrets that he gets credit for coining that clever little attempted slur. Heh.

I think we've finally captured the attention of some of the powers that be, including, at long last, our silver-tongued Young President. Don't you sometimes just want to swat him on the behind and put him in time-out for being so self-righteously and arrogantly sarcastic? He's been "amused" by the Tea Partiers.

Amused. I mean, really.


Friday, April 16, 2010

Our Dogs Are Family

A 15 year-old, 35 pound beagle dog leaves an awfully big hole in your heart when she moves on to chase rabbits across the Rainbow Bridge. Rest peacefully, sweet Wendy Whiner.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

High-Gear Celebrating

I'm getting too old to stay up so late and to eat so many varieties of meat. And that's all I have to say about it.

I think I'll go to a party during daylight hours today.

When is the wedding?!?!?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Musings on the "Retiring" Type of Politician

I thought one needed to have a career before he could "retire." Holding an elected office was never intended to be anyone's life's work -- making one's living by ruling is a function of royalty, not of Congress.

Why couldn't Stupak have "retired" before he caved?

Have you noticed how many Congressfolk have decided that the kitchen is getting just a little too warm and are cutting and running? (Oh, excuse me -- it's not that there's too much pressure on them from conservatives -- it's that they "want to spend more time with their families.")

Of course their decision not to seek re-election means that we, their constituents, now have absolutely no weapon to use in an attempt to get them to listen to reason; there's a legitimate chance they may morph into dangerously loose cannons before they pack it in.

A little scary -- but it tells me there's hope that the fall mid-term elections may stand a better chance of returning some balance to the House. It's always easier to install someone new when there's not an incumbent in the mix.

It also tells me that there are some folks running seriously scared out there. Good. Say it once again, with gusto: Serving in Congress was never meant to be a career.

One of my Facebook friends posted this little bit of cleverness: STUPAK is K-A-P-U-Ts!


Run away, Congressfolk! Run away!

The faster, the better.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Look Who's Home!

I'm out of the doghouse!

I got Pepper home from the hospital yesterday afternoon. You'll note he eased right back into life -- within reach are his Kindle, Blackberry, tv remote control, and he's talking on the landline.

Bouie is just outside of the picture, punishing his dad for being AWOL.

God is good.

Normal is nice.

And I'm breathing again. Whew.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Moogie's Scary Day

This is my sweetheart of 30-some odd years, and my best friend.

Yesterday morning he got all cute and tried to die on me -- he thought having blood pressure and being able to communicate in comprehensible words had become somehow unnecessary.

I got sugar and fluid in him, and got him on his back, but I couldn't get his pressure up high enough, so I informed him that we were going to the ER.

They admitted him and ran a bunch of tests that showed what a wonderful, strong heart and clear carotids he has. By late afternoon, he was still weak, but otherwise pretty much back to his old self, and having a little nicotine withdrawal.

I was pretty much not his favorite person by evening, seeing as how it was all my fault that he was stuck in that hospital bed.

This morning I got a text asking if I'd bring his Kodiak to him before he killed someone.

I think he's feeling better.

I hope to have him home tonight. Bouie is not happy that his dad's not here. And our bed was not nearly full enough last night.

It was a scary, scary day. I don't want to do that again for a long, long time. If ever.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

On Bunny Patrol

It'd be kinda profane to re-post this tomorrow, so I'll do it today instead.

It's just too much of a temptation to resist -- I'm weak.

Happy Saturday before Easter!
P.S. -- that's not Bouie!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Looking Inward

Brains on the floor, brains on the floor. Feeling like a fool with my brains on the floor.

So, I guess I'll close most of my mind except for a little teensy spigot, and explore what I've been storing in there for a long time. That'll be a lot less messy.

Introspection can't be all that bad.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Successful Hunt = Happy Dog

For you non-hunters out there -- sorry about this! Skip to the next post on your blogroll.

But this is what our precious Bouie lives for -- to flush and retrieve and swim and retrieve and . . . retrieve and retrieve and retrieve. He carried one of the quail around the house forever that evening, showing it off to anyone who would look. That's a remarkable, innate characteristic of labs and other retrievers -- they love to carry things around gently in their mouths and show them off. Sometimes it can get a little annoying because they can get quite pushy in encouraging you to check it out, but they take such joy in their feat that you just have to look, smile, and praise.

These pics were taken a week ago, on a cold and rainy night in New Orleans. The intrepid hunters include Pepper, The Son, and our friend who was also Pepper's first aide de camp. They had just returned from a successful bird hunt and were cleaning the spoils on the front porch, assisted by their valiant retriever and a number of beerish substances.

While he's an experienced duck and goose hunter, Bouie had not been on a bird hunt before. The Son got a great video of him flushing (and nearly catching!) the pheasant, so it's understandable that Bouie would carefully supervise the cleaning operation in case the quarry tried to make good an escape.

We've already enjoyed a mess of quail (translation: a "mess" is a variable southern quantity, applicable to game birds, fish, and products of the garden alike), but it was Bouie who earned the pheasant egg. I fried it just until the yolk was runny and placed it atop his breakfast chow. There was no hesitating to eat on Bouie's part that morning!

Now I'm thinking pheasant for Easter dinner. Ah -- the bounty of this old Earth!

And the joy of a young black lab who has pleased his people -- nothing like it.