We went cruising through the French Quarter after dinner tonight and figured out that it’s only 4 miles from our house. Ray Ray visited a church there yesterday (I felt yucky & stayed home). We think that the French Quarter might become our new Sunday afternoon hang out. No, not for the beer and the girls — they only come out at night. Well, I’m sure you can find them in the day, but it’s less obvious. Instead, there’s all kinds of music, arts, and food.
Since moving to Louisiana, I’ve had to learn to read and write again. Nothing seems to be pronounced the way it’s spelled. Here’s a little quiz for all of you. Read the word, then try to figure out which phonetic spelling is correct. These are all place names from Northeast Louisiana (near RayRay’s hometown) or from here in the Big Easy.
1. Boeuf (It’s the name of a river)
2. Bayou Macon
a) Bye-you May-kun
b) Bye Ma-kin
c) Bay-ow Ma-co
d) Bay May-Cohn
3. Tchoupitoulas (A big street here in the Big Easy)
4. Mer Rouge (home of the yummy hot dogs)
b) Mehr Ruge
c) Mur Rude
5. Louisiana (Don’t be fooled by this one!)
I’ll post answers when I get around to it. Bonus points to anyone who can tell me what my title means without using Google or any other search engine/website. The prize: You come to see me and I’ll buy you beignets at Cafe du Monde. (That’s Ca-fay Du-Mohn in case you’re wondering. And they’re called Ben-yays.)
Bean shares a book
Here’s Beanie playing with “Da” on her birthday. Look close and you’ll see her take a little step. I also have video of her playing at the children’s museum, but you can’t see her face very well. She’s growing like a weed (so is her hair), starting to walk, talking more, and has figured out sign language. This, plus the booty-shaking equals a lot of new things to learn in one week! I can’t believe my big girl is 1!
My sweet Monkey-Pie turned 1 today. We celebrated by going to the Children’s museum. She had an absolute blast. Tomorrow we’re having the cake (it’s better for our schedules and she’s too little to notice anyway). I made the cakes today. Since we’re having people over, I made 2 cakes. One for the adults to eat and one for me to cut into a little cake for her. (We’ll eat the leftovers of that.) Also, since it was her first cake, I wanted to make it from scratch. So, to mix it all up, I had to get creative. I realized after the 2 cups of shortening, the 4 cups of flour, and the 8 eggs that my largest mixing bowl was too small. So, I used the stew pot. Hey, it worked.
Pictures and videos forthcoming….
I’ve got 4 minutes until it’s tomorrow, so I have to hurry & get this post in!
Happy Birthday, Miss Cathy! If you know her, I hope you were especially nice to her today and that you gave her cake. If you don’t know her, drive to Oak Ridge and find her. You won’t be sorry.
Happy Anniversary, Ray Ray! It’s been 8 years. This is also the second anniversary in a row that I’ve been pregnant. I am really wanting to not be pregnant next June 24th.
Beanie’s birthday is Thursday. Wow! Has it been a year? She’s started taking little steps. It’s adorable. She’s also found a new favorite book. It has the words to “If You’re Happy and You Know It.” Well, RayRay started singing it instead of reading it to her. She loves it. So, we now sing that song about 35,000 times a day. Also, she has learned a vital skill today. She learned to shake her bootie. I proudly taught her. We were dancing to music and I was shakin’ what my Mama gave me. She now shakes her little bootie every time she hears music — including when I sing “If You’re Happy and You Know It.” Adorable. I’ll work on some video footage.
One minute until tomorrow! Gotta publish now!
Tomorrow we’re taking a break from unpacking and going to the Aquarium of the Americas. I think Bean will enjoy it.
Lately she’s quit taking her good, long 2 hour naps. They’re short (about 45 minutes) or non-existent. Has this happened to any other moms out there? Advice is welcome.
In book news, I’ve been reading a chapter or so each night. This really adds up. I recently read The Secret House by David Bodanis. (Actual full title is The Secret House: 24 Hours in the Strange and Unexpected World in Which We Spend our Days and Nights. That’s a long title.) It’s an old copy from 1986 that I found on my bookshelves at home (Yes, Bubbie, it was yours. I ganked it.) and read it to pass the time. It starts with the morning and tells everything that happens in your home on a microscopic level. The parts about fungus growing on the walls and dust mites in my bed gave me the heebie-geebies, but I still think it was a rather fascinating book. Now, when I wash my hair, I know what I’m washing out and why conditioner works. If you like random information like this, I’d recommend the book. I looked on Amazon and there’s an updated edition (2003). I’d get that if you can. There was some stuff that was amazingly out of date. It made me realize how much technology has lept and bounded away since the mid-80s.
In other news, we bought a couch today. We went into the store looking for a loveseat or small sofa that was cheap. We left with a large one that was more expensive. To the saleslady’s credit, she found out our price range and wouldn’t even show us stuff that was over it. I saw this out of the corner of my eye and asked about it. We looked at the others and were going to settle, but we weren’t happy. Since we got a great deal on a portable dishwasher (our only option here other than two hands) and we also found our washer & dryer on sale, we had the extra cash-o-la in the budget. This couch wasn’t that much over what we wanted to pay and it’s something I think we’ll use happily for years. The others would have just been ok. If you’re buying something that is temporary, ok is ok. If you’re buying an investment like a couch, you might as well get what you’d like, right? Right.
Pictures will come as soon as the couch arrives (next week), I find my camera cable (who knows), and I get the place cleaned up (when kingdom comes).
Thanks for checking in as I’ve been so sporadic in blogging. Hopefully I’ll get back to regular typing about random stuff soon. And here in the Big Easy there’s a lot of random stuff to tell you about!
We now have internet. I am reconnected. And, I have a further backlog of e-mails. I am really considering deleting them all and just starting fresh. I mean, sure I could answer that note you sent me 6 months ago, but would you really remember sending it? Or, by answering would I just remind you that I’m a slacker that doesn’t do e-mail? Would it open old grumbling wounds? Yeah, I thought so.
By the way, there’s been a final decision regarding the casserole name. See the comments on this post to read the final and definitive answer. BethGun gets major points for her creativity, prose, and punctuation in her answers. Papa Steve loses points for not liking black-eyed peas. (Come on, man! You hate milk, you hate peas, what else is there? Or, should I ask what you do like to eat? Do you survive on pork rinds, carrot sticks, and orange juice? Or, are these foods also on the no-no list?)
The people here are all really really nice. Not over-the-top-always-smiling like Joel Osteen. Which is good. Otherwise I couldn’t be friends with these people because I’d always be wondering why they smiled like that. No one smiles that much. No one.
LDL, Lisa, and Tito (and any other lawyers in the bunch), does the previous paragraph open me up to a lawsuit for libel? I’m not sure if I care that it does. I just want to know so I can begin saving up for the lawyer fees. Wait. Tito, you’re my lawyer. And my daughter’s future father-in-law. You’ll represent me for free since you would hate for your son’s future wife to grow up without her mother because she’s in the clink. Oh, but you’re a business lawyer. Dangit. That plan fell through….
My house is a wreck. There’s boxes everywhere. But, we can’t seem to put anything away since we sold all of our furniture. So, I have to buy a bookshelf before I can put the books away. I still don’t have a couch. We have one really old recliner, one cool little red chair I got at an antiques store, 3 wooden chairs that you can only sit straight up in, and 2 folding chairs. That’s it. Oh, and the new computer chair. I forgot about it. It’s comfy. My butt cheeks won’t fall asleep as I type.
As for the apartment, it’s a 2 bedroom, 2 bath. It’s certainly the smallest apartment I’ve ever lived in, but it’s really wisely laid out. The kitchen is tiny, but it has a huge amount of cabinets and counter space. There’s double towel racks in all of the bathrooms. There’s a walk-in closet in our room. There’s a wide hallway that we could line with bookshelves except for the fact that little feet will be pitter-pattering up and down and up and down that hallway soon. There’s a gazillion plugs and outlets here — Anywhere you want to plug something in is no problem. There’s a plug. And, the only rooms that share walls with the neighbors are the bathrooms and the kitchen. We have a neighbor upstairs, but they are either really quiet or the insulation is great. Anyway, I’m happy. Also, I’m not moving again this year. That makes me double happy.
It’s now late and this wandering post has wandered on long enough. This wanderer has also wandered long enough and is grateful for a place to drop anchor and unpack boxes. Once I have a couch and my crap is in place, I’ll post pictures.
Well, I’m back at a computer that has internet. So, I’ll post. Aren’t you all happy?
And no, I still can’t find the cable to my camera, so you still don’t get Bean pictures.
The picnic was great and I saw no West Side Storyesque facing off between the Methodists and Baptists. In fact, they even let the Episcopals, Catholics, and non-church-attending townspeople come with nary a batted eye. It was as I expected.
The food was fabulous — they got a cotton trailer (which is a flatbed the size of an 18 wheeler) and covered it in tablecloths to put the food on. We filled it. And, to my delight, desserts made up about 50% of the fare.
We all talked, Bean was the star, and everyone complained about the gnats. It was town unity at it’s best. Instead of driving a block or so, several families showed up on golf carts. At the end of the picnic, one woman took home two elderly women in her john deere golf cart/yard utility vehicle. (It’s like a golf cart with a pick-up bed.) One woman put her walker in the back and sat down. The other woman hung off the side. I was reminded of another village get-together that the hub and I went to about a year ago. When it ended, this is the way they took one grandpa home:
In other news, we leave Monday or maybe Sunday or possibly Saturday. (Yes we are great at planning ahead.) We are headed to the Big Easy where the hub will get another degree, this time in marriage & family counseling. We’ll live on-campus in really nice housing and once we get through unloading all the boxes I hope to find that pesky camera cable and I can finally post Bean’s 10 month pictures, 11 month pictures, and a great video of her eating her first pizza. (She loved it.)
So that’s my post. Who knows when I’ll get to a computer + internet again.