Wondering Wednesday: the battle of cookware


I have so much to get done ~ my to-do list is a mile long ~ but instead, I’m throwing caution to the wind and writing this post. Why would I do that?

Why not?!

The washer is running, the dryer just beeped, dishes in the dishwasher need to be put away, and I have yet to pack a single thread of clothing for my trip to Kentucky – I’m leaving for Austin tomorrow afternoon and I fly out early Friday morning. I have the final night of VBS at the Fort Worth Community Center tonight too, so I’ve got TONS of time on my hands….yeah right!

It seems all I’ve been thinking about lately is food, food prep, food photography, etc. etc. etc. Quick question for you: Choose your favorite type of cookware.

If you could have just one, which would you choose and why:

All-Cladstainless steel

 

Photo courtesy of ChefsCatalog.com

or

Le Creuset cast iron

Photo courtesy of ChefsCatalog.com

Personally, I’d love to have BOTH – but that’s not one of your answer choices!

I love the durability and tradition of stainless steel, but I also love the rustic charm and festive colors available with cast iron. My dream kitchen has a variety of Le Creuset pieces placed all around….yeah, I’m a big dreamer. As far as price, holy smokes I have expensive taste! The All-Clad stainless steel cookware set retails for over $900.00 – and that’s the SALE price. The Le Creuset cookware set retails for $430.00 – that’s a sale price too. Holy snickerdoodles, that’s a lot of money for pots and pans!

I wish I could say, “Hey, leave a comment and enter for a chance to win your choice of fantastic cookware.” but I cannot. I’m sorry. Maybe ~ hopefully ~ one of these days when I’m in the Big Leagues of Bloggers, Le Creuset and All-Clad will give me their products. Until that glorious day, I’m just gonna slobber on my laptop and wish I had their cookware.

Want some random crap from my life…..here’s some completely useless information:

  1. I’m a kick-butt kind of wife. I can weld metal pipe fence, construct a portable building, assemble a carport, hammer, paint, and replace the wood flooring in a bumper-pull trailor. Yeah, I kick butt and take names…..all while smiling real big like Polly Freakin’ Anna.

    This pile of wood WAS the old trailor floor...obviously in poor condition!

    Husband and I successfully installed a NEW floor....via moonlight - how romantic?!

  2. I’ve done more errand-running the past three days than I have in my entire life. I’m tired. Mothers are my heroes, I don’t see how they do all that they do. If I had a hat on right now, I’d take it off and give it to them. However, as much as I’ve done, laundry is not finished and my suitcase for Kentucky is NOT packed.
  3. I’m really hungry for sushi.
  4. In November, I’m going to help a friend help another friend by taking pictures at a wedding. My friend was asked to take pictures of the small ceremony and I could tell she was really nervous about it. I’m by no means a professional, I don’t think I qualify as “amateur” even, but I offered to take my camera along and snap some photos too. Who doesn’t like weddings anyway? It’ll be fun, I’m looking forward to the opportunity.
  5. If you live underneath a rock, then you probably don’t realize how bad the drought in Texas is right now. When I say it’s bad, I’m not fooling around. We have not mowed our yard since the first week of May….today is July 13. I bought a set of ferns in April and promised myself that I would take care of them. I failed. Miserably.

    a bit parched, don't you think?

  6. The financial institution that had my car loan is acting like a bunch of idiots and I told them that over the phone today. I paid off my car loan in June and I was promised the process would be expedited if I paid in cash. So I did. Almost a month later and I don’t have my car’s title. WTH? Why would you send an important document (i.e. vehicle title) in the regular mail without a tracking number or delivery confirmation? I told the woman on the phone that the company she works for is ridiculously idiotic. She agreed. However, my problem of receiving my car’s title is not solved. Ughhhhhhhhhh.
  7. Another ridiculously stupid,  and idiotic company: American Airlines. I could have flown from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) airport directly to Evansville (IN), Nashville (TN), or Louisville (KY) round-trip for $500. However, if I drive two hours south to Austin and board a plane to any of these destinations, the price is $220. Guess where the connection lands……DFW. So yeah, I’m driving my Polly-Freakin’-Anna self to Austin tomorrow afternoon and staying with my best friend who’s dropping me off at the airport early Friday morning to get on a plane, fly to DFW, and board another plane to Nashville, where my Lovely Mother will retrieve me at 1:32 pm. It. Makes. No. Sense. But hey, I save at least $230 (gas to drive to Austin will cost me at least $50) in airfare alone. I’ll spend that on food instead……take the parents out to dinner and treat them nice.
  8. I ate lunch at Qdoba today and spoke with the manager about the possibility of hosting a GIVEAWAY for a gift-card. I’ll let you know what he and his Marketing Manager say. Who could so “no” to me? PUH-LEASE!
  9. After lunch, I went next door to the nail place and had them cut off the “talons” that had overwhelmed my little hands. I told my sweet friend, Erica, that I was going to Kentucky to work in my Daddy’s garden and a pretty French mani was NOT going to cut the mustard. So, she opted just to paint a light coat of acrylic on top until I return from Kentucky and Haiti. She’s a smart cookie. Aren’t they pretty? Yes, I thought so too!

    These nails are ready for working in Dad's garden.

  10. I have successfully wasted an hour blogging and playing with my camera that it’s now time to leave for church, drive the van to Fort Worth, and entertain some of the AWESOMEST kids ever. It’s been wonderful to be in fellowship with these children and share a Vacation Bible School with them. I can’t wait to share photos and stories with you.

Don’t forget to share your choice of cookware and, by all means, share a random thought from your brain too while you’re here. Might as well, I’ll be listening.

Love,

It’s 3:30 am, I (almost) peed myself


I’m trying to remember what happened approximately 17 minutes ago, but it’s difficult for me to do this during daylight hours ~ much less at 3:30 in the morning.

I was sound asleep in La-La Land, dreaming about food and cooking (doesn’t everybody dream about this?!) when, all of a sudden, I wake from my slumber and see an orange and yellow glow coming from the kitchen.

OH MY GAWDDDD, THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE!!!!!

I jump out of bed and run TOWARDS the orange-yellow glow. When I got to the living room, I heard a man’s voice,

What’s wrong?! What’s wrong with you?”

GOD BLESS AMERICA AND ALL HER ATTACHMENTS!!!!!!!!

At 3:30 am, on the ninth day of July, in the year of our Lord, I almost peed myself.

Thank goodness there was a wall behind me for support, because my legs turned to jello. Hearing my Husband’s voice almost scared the pee out of me!

Me: What are you doing?

Husband: What does it look like I’m doing?

Me: Well, hurry up – I have to pee really bad.

Husband: What’s wrong with you?

Me: I thought I smelled something burning and when I woke up, I saw a yellow glow in here.

Husband:You need to get your eyes checked.

Me: Well, you need to NOT light up the house just to pee!

From the moment I woke up thinking something was burning to attempting to see past eye-boogers, the glow in the kitchen was actually THE DAMN BATHROOM LIGHT.

Are you kidding me?! Who needs to light up the house like Times Square to pee?

 

Do all men turn on the lights when they pee? Do women turn on the lights and I just don’t know it?

 

There are lessons to be learned in the wee hours of the morning:

  1. Stop dreaming about food.
  2. Don’t drink so much water before going to bed.
  3. Get your eyes checked.
  4. If you think your house is up in flames, it could be your Husband’s in the bathroom.
  5. Change the batteries in the fire alarms ~ in case #4 is NOT happening!

Husband and I made it safely back to our bed, but as I was laying there I couldn’t help but think 1) how hilariously stupid I just looked and 2) what if something bad had really happened?! Perhaps the most important reason I couldn’t go back to sleep: I knew this ridiculously funny (and embarrassing) event had to become a blog post. I love knowing that somebody else is going to laugh out loud at my pre-dawn story of almost peeing myself.

Aren’t you glad I got out of bed and posted this for your reading pleasure?

Me too.

Now, I’d really like to get a few more hours of sleep.

Goodbye.

“frugal, festive and fabulous”


I’m stealing borrowing this “frugal, festive and fabulous” craft project idea from Kate, the Centsational Girl.

I’ve been searching for inexpensive cake plates, cupcakes stands, and general food servers for our dining room table. I found this very creative DIY post from Kate and it’s just what I was looking for. The decorative ware is colorful, inexpensive, and can be customized to fit any decor. I especially like the fact that you could have multiple colors and heights to meet your needs for a large party or buffet server. Plus, you can coordinate colors by season, holiday, or a specific occasion (i.e. Fourth of July, bridal shower, or Christmas).

My best friend, Kim, thinks I have an addiction obession to decorative textiles, specifically placemats and kitchen hand towels. You see, I have multiple sets for every major holiday and season. While our table does not currently have any place-settings, the double-ovens are adorned with festive towels for Fourth of July. They’re so purr-deee.

I digress so easily.

Back to craft project……Colorful Display Stands

As soon as I saw Kate’s DIY post about creating colorful stands from items purchased at the local Goodwill store, I was hooked. Once again, here is another prime example when I scratch my head and scream at the top of my lungs…

“WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THIS SOONER?!?!”

Lucky for me, there’s a Goodwill store just minutes from the house. I wouldn’t say I’m a frequent customer, but I will stop occasionally to scout a good bargain. I went a couple of months ago and found several pairs of work pants and t-shirts that I am taking on the Haiti mission trip next month. I love a good sale and discounted prices are one of my most favorite things in life. Who cares if it’s someone else’s trash………it’s my treasure now!

So, I’m on a mission this week to create some of these decorative pieces for all the wonderful and amazing parties I don’t host and people don’t attend. If you read my post, Hostess with the Leastest you’d understand this statement. Perhaps decorative plates will encourage people to show up ~ hahaha!!!!!

Anybody want to have a party at my house?!?!

I’ll cook……..and decorate the table all nice and pretty!

Rain, Rain, come & stay!


From the horses’ perspective:

Dearest Rainmaker,

This nonsense has to stop.

You know better than we do that our owners (King and Queen) are cheap and don’t like the excessive costs of buying and hauling hay for us to consume and poop a few hours later.

The grass in the pasture is dry and disgusting. We want our oats sweet and grass green.

Thank goodness for the Queen’s mother in Kentucky. Bless that woman’s heart for sending us bags of treats flavored with oats, apples, and sorghum. We know they’re an annoyance to the King, because we get all up in his grill and sniff his jeans pockets, but we’re looking for those deeeeee-lish treats. Please tell Mother of the Queen that she can come for a visit anytime…..or send more treats.

Anyway, we’re in need of rain in these here parts of Johnson County, Texas. PLEASE send rain to the pasture we call home. Our feet are dry and beginning to crack. Come to think of it, the Queen recently painted our toes with a conditioning treatment and the King later complained about the cost of that product too. Something’s gotta give, and it ain’t gonna be us.

One more thing, could you turn down the thermostat and slow the wind? We don’t like grazing in 40 mph winds and accidentally chewing your mane is gross. 

Sincerely,

Curtis & Blue

 

The days of green, lush grass seem to be over. The photo above was taken last spring after I had mowed the front yard. Husband was on the tractor and forgot to shut the gate leading to the pasture and barn. The horses didn’t mind – they enjoyed the freshly mowed grass.

I feel for the horses, I really do. I went to the barn earlier and they were looking at me with these awful, pitiful eyes as if to say, “Would you please stop walking and kicking up dust!”

Curtis and Blue, I’m really sorry the weather sucks and your pasture is dry. I’ve suggested on numerous occasions that I should bring you both inside the house where it’s nice and cool. I think you’d nap like rock stars if you were under a ceiling fan and soaking up the A/C. But we all know Husband won’t allow it. Y’all know how he is, he’s an ornery ol’ fart. But we love him anyway.

 

Yep, there’s Joshua, Texas. Right smack-dab-in-the-middle of a huge storm system making its way through North Texas. What a lousy load of horse manure that is. I’m just a little upset we didn’t get a decent shower from this system that FINALLY broke through the FREAKIN high-pressure cap that sits atop North Texas from mid-April to mid-forever.

I have moments of rage and times of resentment towards living in Texas.  THIS is one of those times.

I don’t remember the last time I saw rain at our house. The counties north of us got a thirst-quenching rain storm the last two nights. There were a few storms that produced large hail and damaging winds, but, to my knowledge, there have been no reports of injuries. I watched and listened to various weather reports PROMISING rain to our area but ohhhhh noooooo, it had to skirt above, below, left, and right.

Life. Is. Not. Fair.

I want rain. Not the feast-or-famine kind of rain, but soaking rains to decrease drought conditions and fire dangers, improve foliage for livestock, fill lakes and rivers, and replenish the water content needed in our home’s concrete foundation.

Honestly, I don’t ask for rain for myself. It’s not that I don’t want relief for my chapped lips or sweaty armpits, but I really want rain for our horses and pasture. My feelings are hurt when I watch them eat. Unfortunately, weather conditions are not cooperating.

I used to mow the yard twice a week or more. The last time I cranked the lawnmower, I had to use jumper-cables on the battery because it was dead. I’m willing to bet the same will be true if I ever mow again.

(stepping off soap box)

 

the importance of self-exams


I’m going out of my comfort zone today to bring you some information that I think is pertinent, relevant and potentially life-saving. As bad as I hate to admit this, it’s the truth and the purpose for this post:

I did not wear sunscreen when I was younger.

Summer is right around the corner and I doubt there’s anybody more excited than me to see this school year conclude…it’s been one helluva ride! Nonetheless, summertime usually involves reading a book on the porch, mowing the yard, watching the Husband team rope, trips to the pool or river, and hours picking corn and other produce from my parent’s garden in Kentucky. That’s a lot of time outdoors.

I played competitive junior golf for 12 years, including junior high and high school in Kentucky and collegiate golf in Texas. I spent countless hours on the golf course year-round. During the summer, I’d be on the course from dusk to dark. Before I was old enough to drive a car, Mom would drop me off at the country club on her way to work and she or Dad (or I’d bum a ride with somebody else) would pick me up after dark. During the competitive season, I’d stay on the driving range and practice green during the cool morning hours and then walk (yeah, the kind of golf that requires you to walk and carry your clubs) 36+ holes during the hottest part of the day. Stupid? Yes. Strange? Of course. Beneficial? You betcha.

Photo: The Journal Enterprise

If you saw my skin tone now, you’d think I was lying about my past. I’m fair-skinned and I’m perfectly satisfied with this. Being tanned is NOT a priority anymore. Honestly, the moment the dermatologist said she was “concerned” about a couple of places on my face, arm, and leg I immediately had this wave of regret rush over me. I used to have this great tan (the infamous “golfer’s tan” with the bright white feet) but the price I had to pay later was high. Before my 25th birthday, I had a skin cancer scare.

At 24, I had a mole removed from my back. This was eye-opening for me because my back did not get tanned, it rarely got exposed to the sun. Fortunately, the spot was lab-tested and the results were negative for melanoma.

Thank you, Lord.

However, my parents have had their own scares in recent years and two of my Dad’s tested positive. Luckily, they were removed and he had successful treatment procedures.

Thank you, Lord.

The days of being happy-go-lucky and going outside without ample amounts of sunscreen are over. DONE. I don’t play nearly as much golf as I used to and that has definitely influenced my lighter skin tone and skin-care regimen. I apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 daily under my makeup, my powder foundation includes SPF 15, I constantly apply SPF 30 lip balm, and my sunglasses are always with me and they have UVB protection as well.

The invention of spray sunscreen is wonderful. I especially love Neutrogena’s Ultimate Sport with Helioplex. The SPF is really high and it definitely provides coverage. I first used this sunscreen when I went to Mexico two years ago. I was very satisfied. I’m terrible about reapplying sunscreen, but the spray can is very convenient and useful. Plus, your hands stay clean and dry. This has proven useful when I’m outside with Kevin and he’s got me working in all kinds of dirty conditions (i.e. building/welding a fence, mowing, etc).

I’m definitely not a doctor, but I’m familiar with the ABC’s of skin-care self-exams. You should familiarize yourself with them too:

  • Is it asymmetrical?

  • Is the border irregular?

  • Is there any color variation?

  • Is it larger than 6 millimeters in diameter?

  • Is it evolving?

If you’re curious or suspicious about a blemish, mole, bump, or other skin spot, don’t hesitate to be overly cautious or concerned. Get it checked out by a doctor. I’m sure you’ve heard before, “better safe than sorry.”

For more information, check out these articles recently published on MSN.com. They have additional tips and resources for skin self-checks and dermatology.

Scan Your Skin

Will I Look Like a Monster?

A Royal Prayer


I did not watch the wedding or invest lots of time and energy dwelling into the royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton (now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge). I didn’t lose sleep to watch their pomp and pageantry in the wee hours of Friday, April 29, 2011 either.

What I can’t get untangled from the web of my mind’s thoughts is the poignant and simple prayer the royal couple wrote for their ceremony at the majestic Westminster Abbey. The prayer was read by the Right Rev. Richard Charters, Lord Bishop of London, during his sermon:

God our Father, we thank you for our families; for the love that we share and for the joy of our marriage.

In the busyness of each day keep our eyes fixed on what is real and important in life and help us to be generous with our time and love and energy.

Strengthened by our union help us to serve and comfort those who suffer. We ask this in the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Amen.

I think this is one of the best compositions ever.

I think William and Kate’s words are beautiful, timeless, and filled with thoughtfulness for the human race. I’m guilty of allowing the busyness of life to get in the way of the things (people) that matter most to me. As I’m preparing for the mission trip to Haiti in August, the ways I share my love and consume my time and energy are becoming painfully obvious.

My hope – in Haiti and everywhere I go – is that I will love, comfort, serve, and nurture those that suffer with the blessings I’ve been given while on this earth. 

to whom much is given, much is required — Luke 12:48 

This is my prayer. What’s yours?

how do you spell that?


Two weeks ago, I graded my students’ essay projects discussing life in rural and urban areas of Texas in the early 1900s. For this endeavor, I opened a new package of  red ink pens. Nine hours and 138 papers later, one pen was dry and the other was close. Students later asked if I was stabbed or in a bad mood because I was nit-picking over little details. Spelling IS a detail.

For the record: I was not stabbed. I was not trying to be a b*tch either. However, I consider spelling, grammar, and punctuation important components of writing compositions. Plus, for Pete’s sake, proper nouns (i.e. Texas) MUST be capitalized. No exceptions! Did I miss a memo about new rules for capitalization? Is this concept still taught in elementary schools? Are students still taught catchy rhymes (“i” before “e” except after “c”) and spelling techniques?

I admit that Dictionary.com and Thesaurus.com are saved as “favorites” links. My husband uses them in necessity. He calls me when Spellchecker doesn’t recognize the word he’s trying to spell. Poor guy. As a journalism major and former marketing professional, professional writing and communication are of the utmost importance to me. After all, first impressions count and misspellings are greatly frowned upon. Fortunately, my ability to write and eloquently communicate are skills I use daily in my current profession. In fact, I’ve received numerous compliments on my formal and professional language used in emails and correspondence to students, parents, and colleagues. Thank you.

When I’m in the classroom, I intentionally use a dictionary and/or thesaurus. You know, those thick books usually sitting on a dusty shelf? I almost tripped over a dictionary being used as a door-stop. *sigh* I want students to witness an adult using these resource materials. Sure, it would be easy to use my laptop and visit an online website but that would not benefit the student without Internet access readily available. I still cringe when my students ask me “what is a glossary?” or “where is the index?” Seriously? Several of my students could not answer either of those questions if asked.

I’ve compiled a list of words that I frequently check for my own writing. It might be helpful to you too.

Do you have a word or words that cause you to check a resource?

Cock-a-doodle-do


I live in a house full of cocks.

The "rooster perch" atop the kitchen cabinets.

It’s true. Well, it’s really a kitchen full of cocks. I won’t – and Kevin definitely won’t – allow the collection of roosters to overflow into other areas of our home. They are “contained” within the kitchen and that’s fine by me. I think I’ve made the statement that I collect roosters, I don’t want to be called the “Crazy Cock Lady.” Less is more, right?!

Some roosters are ceramic, others are glass, one is cast iron, and my favorite is made of barbed wire.

This little guy sets on the window ledge above the kitchen sink (nice view of the front yard and pasture too). I use his "feathers" to hold my ring while I'm washing dishes or cooking.

This collection began when we moved into our home in September of 2007. I received the first rooster, made of cast iron and painted bright red, as a bridal shower gift from the sweetest, most precious, little lady in Kentucky that wrote,

Every home needs a rooster to symbolize confidence and prosperity; and, it will watch over you and your family. Congratulations to you and Kevin, may God bless this marriage.

The one that started this collection!

 

Four years of marriage and a rooster collection later, Kevin and I are enjoying life in our rooster perch. Who would have ever thought I would have a kitchen full of cocks?!

Rooster made of recycled barbed-wire.

A funny cock story: my parents drove from Sebree, KY to Joshua, TX a few months after Kevin and I moved into our home. Dad and I were outside walking around and discussing plans for supper and suddenly realized we did not have a grill. Luckily, Wal-Mart is just down the road about 10 minutes. I went to the food section and Dad headed off to the lawn and garden department. Twenty minutes later, Dad is pushing a cart filled with a bag of charcoal, a charcoal grill and this rooster:

A gift from my Dad

Me: “Nice cock, Dad.”

The words escaped my lips before I could stop them.

Dad: “It’s a gift from ol’ Dad for your new home. Smartass.”

I don’t look at that rooster without thinking about our trip to Wal-Mart.

In between hours of teacher certification projects and lesson planning, I did some rooster research today. Roosters are interesting creatures. (Credit: www.whats-your-sign.com)

  • Roosters (male chickens, often called cockerels or cocks) guard the area where his hens are nesting, or protecting their eggs. He usually sits four or five feet above the ground and “looks out” for the flock. If predators arrive, he will sound a distinctive alarm call.
  • In Christianity, the rooster is remembered for crowing three times after Peter denied Christ. Thus, the rooster symbolizes Christ’s passion.
  • The rooster symbolizes honesty in China.
  • Sacred in Japan, roosters are allowed to roam freely amongst Shinto temples because believers think the rooster’s crow at dawn brings followers to morning prayers.
  • In dreams, roosters are considered time-keepers. Whenever you see a plumed rooster, it’s time to let others see your true self and “strut your stuff” by showing your gifts and talents.
  • The national emblem of France is the rooster.
  • Roosters are also symbols for pride, honesty, courage, diligence, strength, and watchfulness.

I’m not very knowledgable of the Chinese Zodiac (except for what I read on the placemats at the local Chinese restaurant), but the rooster is in the calendar and I thought it was relevant. According to the calendar, Kevin was born in the year of the Dragon and I was born in the year of the Pig. Geez, how ironic. Oh well, I’m a bacon lover. Oink. Oink.

Traits of someone born in the year of the Rooster include, according to www.chinesezodiac.com:

  • confident, motivated, loyal, trustworthy
  • individuals are blunt when offering their opinions
  • very sociable
  • extremely organized and keep neat homes (yeah right, here’s a big clue as to why I’m NOT a Rooster!)
  • active and in good health
  • if this person takes on too much, they become stressed and moody (who doesn’t?!)

Happy Saturday, y’all.

Cock-a-doodle-doo,

The Crazy Cock Collector

I’m (not) pregnant


But I’m seriously considering it.

But I haven’t consulted with my husband. This could be a problem.

I don’t need more problems, I’ve got enough to deal with.

I have a theory and my mother (plus a few others) agree that it might have some validity. We (mostly I) think that my allergy to dairy (cow’s milk) will go away if I become pregnant. For a brief, but oh-so-glorious, nine month period, I would enjoy the wonderful and creamy deliciousness that dairy has to offer.

At the age of 21, I was diagnosed with an allergy to cow’s milk. Please, don’t ask me if I’m “lactose intolerant.” It’s not the same. Not even close. So imagine my broken spirit when, after 21 years of consuming ice-cold 2% milk, real butter and my grandmother’s homemade banana pudding, the allergy specialists said, “I’m sorry, Nicole, but you are allergic to cow’s milk. You have to stop consumption now.”

That’s the day rain began falling on my parade. It hasn’t stopped.

Now, before you all get excited and worked up, I’m NOT pregnant. Do I want to be? Well, if it meant I would be safe from dairy products, then yes. If I sound selfish, I apologize. I don’t feel well, every square inch of my body aches, and all I really want to do is go home, put my jammies on, and lay on the couch. It’s times like this that I ask myself, “Why did I choose a career that involves speaking to teenagers?” I’m not very smart.

This week has been hell. On top of TAKS testing for middle school students (which translates into the most boring, dull experience any human being has to endure and includes pacing around a 600 square foot classroom, in silence, for 8 hours, as students complete their test and/or read or sleep), I’ve been suffering the past five days with an allergic reaction. Imagine fire and intense pain in your mouth, on your tongue, around the gum line, down your throat and esophagus, then into your stomach, intestines and beyond. By “beyond” I mean beyond. If you don’t understand, nevermind. I’m not explaining this.

Moving on……..

So, yeah, I’m in pain. I hurt. I’m not sure “pain” adequately describes this experience, but it’s a royal pain in the ass. No offense to the Queen or the newly wed couple.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Catherine, on their wedding day (04.29.11).

Speaking of the newlyweds, I did not get up early to watch the royal pageant but I admit to looking at pictures before leaving for school this morning. I really like Kate’s dress. I also love all the hats most women in attendance are wearing. It reminds me of the Kentucky Derby, which is Saturday, May 7 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.

Queen Elizabath II wearing all yellow at her grandson's wedding.

I think the photo below is my favorite. The little girl at the bottom sums my feelings towards allergic reactions. I also think her expression mimics the attitude of some around the world that are sick and tired of this royal wedding. Honestly, I’m glad it’s over. I wish the couple well, but let’s move on people.

The little girl's expression is the best. She's so over this damn wedding!

Thoughts and prayers to the families devastated by the horrific tornadoes in Alabama. My extended family in Cullman are fine, but they are still without power. Cullman is located about an hour northeast of the City of Tuscaloosa, which looks more like a nightmare than it does a college town. ROLL TIDE and God bless.

Photo courtesy of Marvin Gentry / Reuters

Haiti trip update: my airline ticket was purchased this morning. I guess the next thing is to get all of the immunization shots at the local health department. That sounds like a fun experience. OH JOY!!!!

HAIL TO THE QUEEN


Forget that the Royal Wedding is later this week (it is Friday, right?!), I’m singing “Hail to the Queen” in my own way.  Check it out!

North Texas, bless its heart, finally got a teasing rain this evening. Most people in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex experienced heavier rain and thunderstorms, but here at our humble abode we collected about a half-inch of rain and a good sprinkling of marble-size to ping-pong-ball-sized hail. Luckily, no damage. Plus, I honestly didn’t care what was busted or broken or crushed because I desperately wanted rain. I swear the grass turned three shades greener in a matter of minutes. It was thirsty.

I’ll take the half-inch and be grateful. Kevin says he’s never seen this much hail. I like celebrating these little “firsts” with him, he’s such a cutie-patootie. In 2009, Kevin had his first White Christmas. It was the coolest thing. Ever.

Hail Storm - April 19, 2011

I have a question for you:

Who spends more than $50.00 at Hallmark on birthday and Mother’s Day cards?

Me. That’s who. $57.21 to be exact.

I think my Mom, grandmothers, and other lovely ladies who are also mama’s, will be pleased with the cards (yes, plural – I send multiple cards to individuals!) I send with love. I’m a stickler for cards. I probably own half of the company’s stock and the royalty checks have gotten lost in the mail. That’s got to be the problem. I should have my people call their people and get this whole thing figured out. I might have a trust in place – with lots of zeros on the account balance – waiting for me. Wouldn’t that be lovely?

Another lovely thing is this gift I bought myself: it’s purdy. (That’s country slang for pretty, in case you didn’t know.) I was inspired by my friend and fellow-blogger, The Coastal Chicster. Miss Lisa went on an incredible Caribbean vacation in February and bought herself a fabulous piece of jewelry…click here to see her beauty. 

My gift to me, myself and I isn’t as fabulous as hers, but it’ll do in a pinch. I’m a real pinch though: it’s called being REALLY allergic to my wedding band. Yeah, that sucks BIG time. I’ve got to get it reset in platinum this summer. I’m severely allergic to the nickel elements in the white gold of my ring. It sucks. But here’s something else to add to my to-do list. The last time I wore my ring, I thought my finger would fall off after just 20 minutes. I spent the rest of the day with the symbol of my love and committment to my husband in the pocket of my pants. That was nerve-wrecking. I still have the scar from that nervous day in January. It’s like a severe burn on my ring finger. Ouch.

A Gift for Me, Myself and I

Whatcha think?

I think my nails need a manicure. Bad.

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