Friday, September 26, 2008

Happy Birthday Molly

Today is Molly's birthday! I can't believe how fast the time has gone. It seems just a short time ago since the day she was born. My labor was loooong and preparing me for an emergency c-section the Dr. decided to try forceps first. I heard him say "I knew that was a stubborn little girl". They placed her in my arms and I remember she wasn't crying just looking at me in a bewildered sort of way. When I looked into her dark brown eyes my world and the purpose of my life changed forever.

The last couple of days the words from the song "Turn Around" has been playing in my head.

Where are you goin', my little one, little one?
Where are you goin', my baby my own?
Turn around and you're two, turn around and you're four
Turn around and you're a young girl, going out of the door.

This picture was taken on her first birthday. When I put this picture in Molly's baby album I wrote underneath "On My Way". I never knew how true that would turn out to be. Time has flown by so fast since the day she was born. She has filled our lives with joy and we are so proud of the young woman she is today.

Turn Around
Turn Around

Happy Birthday Molly!

On September 27, 1985 you got the "Birthday".

We got the "Present"!

Love You Dearly,

Mom and Dad

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Fall TV

I am going to take some time off after this blog because I am so behind in housework. I have got to get all my clutter under control and still have time for the new fall shows!

I think this picture is so funny. Actually I haven't watched CSI for a long time but may start again this year.

I am so excited that the new shows are finally starting this week. I looked at the TV schedule and it's going to be tough trying to watch and record everything I want to see. It seems that many of the shows I watch are going to be on at the same time. What a dilema!

Monday September 22nd


Heroes has been off so long I am going to have to watch the recap just to remember what happened last season. This show requires alot of brain work. Thank goodness for friends who watch it too. Alas, Dancing with the Stars is on at the same time. I do not want to miss Cloris Leachman. Then again it's on three nights in a row. That's a bit much.

The real pickle (left over from my last blog) is going to be Thursday night. Survivor, Grays Anatomy and ER are all overlapping. How to watch, record all three shows may require more brain work than watching Heroes.

I heard that my favorite Dr. Greene is going to be back on ER for their last season. I'm really looking forward to how they are going to play this out since he died of a brain tumor on the show.

Tonight the Emmys are on. I love to watch all the stars but don't always agree with the winners. So I've decided to watch something a little more exciting.


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Blog Layouts and Del Monte Pickles

Let's start with layouts. I'm getting close to finally fluffing up my blog. It's so blah right now and as soon as I get the house really clean and have a garage sale that I have been trying to do for the last year then I'll hopefully have time. I've looked at a couple of free blog sites, Pyzam and I think the other is The Cutest Blogs. I originally tried using one from Pyzam but had so much trouble with it I gave up. I found a layout I really like on the Cutest Blog Site but it looks like you end up purchasing other things you need, a header for instance. I don't mind the purchase part as long as it's reasonable. So all my creative friends and relatives do you have any advice you can give me on this? I love all of your layouts.

Why aren't there Del Monte Pickles in Dallas?

I grew up with Kosher Del Monte Dill Pickle halves. I love those pickles. Eat them straight from the jar, on sandwiches (especially peanut butter and pickle) or make little toothpick appetizers with pickle, cheese, and salami. My kids really like them as well and then quite a few years ago the stores in the Dallas area quit carrying them. I have looked at all the major grocery stores Tom Thumb, Albertsons, and Kroger. No Del Monte pickles! Target and Walmart do not carry them either. Weird thing is they all carry Del Monte canned vegetables and fruit. So what's up with the pickles?

My friend Carol who used to live across the street from us has a daughter who is one week younger than Molly. Molly and Ashlee grew up together and I guess I must have introduced her to these pickles. I didn't know how fond she was of them until this summer. Ashlee went to college at Stephen F. Austin University which is in East Texas. She graduated this summer and is now working at the same hospital I work at in Dallas as an RN. (I'm so proud of her!) She found my office one day and brought me a card and 2 jars of Del Monte Pickles. I was in heaven for the short time they survived in my house. I asked her where she got them and she told me she had to order a whole case off the Internet. Now that is love for a pickle.

I found the Del Monte web site and emailed them asking why we can't get them in Texas. I haven't heard back.

They even have Organic ones now.

But not in Texas.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Happy Birthday Steve

Brothers and Sisters

My brother wasn't real thrilled when he found out he had a new baby sister. Dad was going to visit mom in the hospital and asked Steve if he had anything he wanted him to tell mom. Steve said "Tell her I hate her." I'm sure glad you got over that and I know mom is too. In fact I think we always got along really well.

Being a "traveling" family brought many adventures for us to share.

We survived blizzards in Alaska.

Fought Cuban Rebels

Even marched on the Capital in Washington, D.C.

We survived numerous road trips in the back seat of a car that did not have air conditioning. The most memorable being a trip that started at 4 am in Winslow, Arizona and ended about 11 pm in Stockton, California. We took the scenic route passing the Hoover Dam (I think Dad pointed to it) then hitting a grocery store in Las Vegas for lunchtime bologna sandwiches. We went through Yosemite Valley which involved the scariest ride I have ever been on, Tioga Pass. This is a back road through the Sierra Nevada mountains and I just remember looking out my window at a bottomless drop from the road. I know I left hand prints on your leg that day.

We played real games like "Red light - Green light", "Mother May I" and "Freeze Tag". Hide and Seek" was a biggy but playing it in the Arlington National Cemetery at night was not a good idea. As I recall you and Bobby hid and I was the one who had to find you - for a long time. (I told mom). When we were young you were always telling me stories. I remember ghost stories (bloody bones) and adventure stories that you made up as you went along. You were quite entertaining.

You have become a devoted husband and father.

Still a teller of stories but the theme has changed from fiction to the "Word of God" and you're reaching a much larger audience now.

I'm so proud of you!


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

What Comes In The Pet Door - Part III

Things That Go Bump In The Night!

Night visitors have included some good cats and one really mean wild tom cat. He looked very similar to the one in the picture below except he was fatter. I knew I had to trap him and have him taken away or somebody was going to get hurt, including me! I was able to trap him in the garage and held him hostage until animal control could pick him up the next day. He shredded the pet door trying to get in the house that night.

Other night visitors were much more clever. Raccoons!

Note: I used the pictures below to illustrate my story. These are not the ones that were coming in my house. I'm not that camera ready.

I had no idea raccoons were fond of cat food or that they would have the audacity to come into my house. One summer fresh peaches I had put in a bowl on the counter lured them in and the mess they made was awful. Bits and pieces of peaches, juice and coffee grounds that they pulled out of the sink were all over the place. It was not an easy clean up.

Raccoon paws are like hands. They can open drawers, cupboards and love to tear things up. About a year after the peach orgy, I had another visit. I found a Hershey bar wrapper on the kitchen floor and remembered I had put one in the bottom of my purse. My purse was on the counter and all of its contents still inside but the Hershey bar. A racoon had actually reached all the way down in my purse and pulled that candy bar out without disturbing anything else. Tom refers to my purse as the black hole, especially when he is looking for the check book, so believe me this was quite a feat.

A few nights later something woke me up. I thought I saw Charlie in the doorway of our bathroom. I said "Charlie what are you doing?" (Yes I talk to my cats.) It took off running and I chased it down the hallway into the kitchen. Turning the light on I saw a very large fluffed up raccoon which hurried out the pet door.

The next morning I picked up a trap from animal control, placed it in the garage and baited it with a Hershey bar, you knew I was going to say that! That evening I caught a racoon. It was picked up by animal control the next day. I still had the cage because I had to personally return it to get my deposit back. When I went to put it in my car I found a candy bar wrapper by the pet door. One more raccoon to go. Fortunately I was able to trap it the same way.

The moral of the story is: If you have Hershey Bars in the house, eat them before the raccoons do.


Sunday, September 7, 2008

What Comes In The Pet Door - Part II

The Unwelcome Guests

The list of unwelcome guests is long. Mice, rats, frogs and one morning I heard Tom in the kitchen say "Honey is this real?" Charlie had plopped a dead garden snake at his feet! I went out of my way to trap them alive. You can buy humane traps at Home Depot. Once inside the trap they can't get back out until you let them out. I would take them outside let them loose and hope they didn't come back in. I did have one little guy sit at the front door for a long time hoping I would relent.

One morning I stepped on a rat that had been played with by one of my cats a little too roughly. It was still alive but paralyzed. I couldn't just toss it in the garbage or outside still alive so I got the bright idea of putting it in a ziplock bag thinking he would die quickly and painlessly by breathing it's own carbon dioxide. Made sense to me! I put it in the garage and kept checking on it. It took SIX HOURS! I called my friend and said "Do you know how long it takes for a rat to die in a ziplock bag?" She thought it was a joke and kept waiting for the punch line. I can't believe I told that story about myself.

Charlie found a frog pond one summer. (I hope it wasn't my neighbors). We had 5 or 6 frogs loose in the house. He didn't kill them just brought them in to play with. I would look down and there would be a little frog with dust bunnies all over it from hiding behind the dryer. Again shoebox to the rescue!

The last mouse took a while to catch.

He would sneak out from his hiding place (the dryer) and grab a little dry cat food and run back. He was becoming a little too fearless, not afraid of passing Tom on his food break. When Tom named him Scooter I decided it was time to bring out the big guns - Hershey Bars. I neglected to tell you that a little piece of a Hershey Bar has always lured these beasts to my traps.

We have been free of "unwelcome guests" for quite a while. Charlie is slowing down in his old age but I still keep a supply of Hershey Bars just in case. (You know one for me, one for you!)

Some find them a little too enticing! Coming in Part III - Things That Go Bump In the Night!

Friday, September 5, 2008

What Comes In The Pet Door - Part I

When Jackson figured out how to open the front door my indoor cats discovered a marvelous world beyond the walls of our home. Shortly after, we installed a pet door. This was great for their comings and goings but has also brought some unwanted guests into our house over the years.

Charlie our cat lived on his own in the gutter about 6 months before we officially adopted him. (Yes, he was coming in the pet door too ). Being on his own taught him to be quite a hunter. He was so grateful to have a warm, dry house to sleep in that he showered us with gifts. I know it's nature and a loving gesture on his part but I am a softy and don't deal with these events well. We've had just about everything imaginable dropped at our feet and some uninvited guests have come in on their own.

The Innocent Ones

Unfortunately birds and bunnies were tops on his list. I was forever trying to fix what he brought in (if it was still alive).

One morning I woke up to two baby blue jays in the living room. One very much alive and the other, well we won't go there. So what do you do with a baby blue jay? You go to Pet Co and buy a bird cage, wild bird formula, a special feeding syringe and now you are set to raise it to adulthood and set it free because you secretly know you are just like Snow White. I put the cage on the back porch and fed the little guy every few hours into the night. Early the next morning I go out, lift the cover off the cage and "Oh No" he is belly up, little legs sticking straight up in the air. It was very sad but the cage came in handy later.

In the springtime it's bunnies.

Living on the golf course brings a surplus of bunnies and many have ended up in my house. Happily I have saved quite a few (shoe boxes work well for trapping). One he brought in was just too tiny. I called the North Texas Rabbit Sanctuary but nobody answered. I'm serious there is one. The number is 972-285-0881. Sooo, off to Pet Co again for formula and feeder. Again I tried to save his little life but you know the outcome.

Jackson was at a tender age and quite in to what was going on. I decided a funeral was called for. We put him in a small gift box. I typed up the "All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small" verse and placed it in the box with him. We buried him in the back yard, said a prayer and Molly and friends sang Kumbaya. It was a nice touch.

I tried.

Coming soon! Part II - The Unwelcome Guests

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Why is there a golf ball in my bathtub?

The other day I walked into our master bathroom and saw some glass (actually plastic) in my sink. I looked around and there was more on the floor and lo and behold a golf ball in the bathtub. So then I looked up and there was a hole in my skylight. See what a fine job Tom did patching it up!

Cardboard, garbage bags and duct tape. No home can be without them.

It had to be a direct hit to go all the way through. I just can't quite figure out how it got past our Red Oak that covers that side of our house. We are halfway down the fairway on the right.

We moved into our house a little over 25 years ago. When we first moved in there were no trees and no patio. Initially we were getting hit a lot. At least 8 windows have been replaced, 1 french door pane, the skylight now for the second time and the patio door shattered but Molly did that when she was three with the Charlie bar so that doesn't count. The only golfer to offer to pay for their bad swing was the one that broke the french door, most of them run off in their carts as fast as they can.

Once I was sitting at the kitchen table talking on the phone and a ball came through the window past me shattering glass everywhere. Another morning about a year ago, I opened a window in the kitchen because fat Charlie (the cat) likes to go out that way because the pet door is a little tight for him. Leaving it open I sat down at the table to read the paper and a golf ball came through the open window and ping ponged all around the kitchen. Fortunately the only thing it shattered was my nerves. Woke me up!

Needless to say the glass coverage on our insurance policy was cancelled long ago. The skylight seems to be withstanding Gustov's 40 mile an hour winds. There has been no rain in Dallas because the weathermen said we were going to get rain. Instead Arkansas is getting it all.