Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Tales From Under The Bed

While Sam spent last week at his dad's house, I tackled his room. My goal this year is to get him into an organized routine, because he suffers from ADD (inattentive, without hyperactivity) and staying organized will help him tremendously.

His little brother has been fascinated by Sam's room since he started walking seven months ago. He had all kinds of things growing, breathing, living in that room.

I decided to start under the bed, which stands over a foot off the floor.

The first couple of feet were fine, I slid and hurled clothes, shoes and garbage out from under.

Then I tummy crawled underneath. Only my below the knees were exposed, and I continued to toss piddly junk like pink beanie babies that his great grandmother from his Dad's side insist he have - WHEN HE WAS 10!!

Then, something Big, brown and hairy hopped down my shirt. I was so started, I wacked my noggin on the 2x4 attached to the bottom of the bedframe. While I checked my head for bleeding (I was sure I felt that tingly blood running down face feeling) I discovered a piece of paper. It had "Sam" written in girly girl writing with a heart outside his name.

So, being the sneaky mom, I wondered if I should open and take a look. "No One is here, I am all by myself" I was thinking just as a cold clammy hand grabbed my ankle.

So I wacked my noggin again, on the same 2x4 in the same place, for which I still had not determined the extent of the first injury.

It was Tony home for lunch, and I had Evanescence blaring on the stereo, I didn't hear him sneak in.

After we had lunch at Hunan's, I went back to my project. It took me 3 days to clean that room, closet, drawers and all.

Among the things I found:

A shopping bag full of Easter Candy and empty wrappers.... under the pillow. Sam said he had been looking all over for it.

More love notes. Lots more. Typical puppy love stuff, "wanna go out with me?" kinda stuff even though they are years from driving!!

Dead AA batteries everywhere.

I had no idea he owned 5 CD players!

Tony's missing underpants....... alrighty then!!

A Chik Fil A Sandwich, still in original foil, located inside his desk drawer. Hard as a rock and had the face of Virgin Mary on it. Well, not really, but it was hard as a rock, and I guess he thought he would save it for later??


Something happened to my weather station, the first storm that came through. We initially thought it was lightning, and so a new part was sent. The part howsomever has not solved the problem. So my new pal Brett at Davis Instruments are going to take the next step when he calls me back.

As soon as I get up and running, I will start the page and go from there.

More later, in the coming days!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Hurricane Ivan: Two Years Later

On September 16th, Hurricane Ivan slammed onto Orange Beach as a Cat 3 Hurricane, sustained winds of 130 mph. It caused tremendous damage to homes, condos, retail centers, and the roads. The vegetation was severely windburned, hardly any survived.

Fortunately no one was killed. Gov. Riley ordered everyone off the island, and rerouted I-65 southbound lanes to make them northbound lanes.

I remember this well. My Granny lives in Orange Beach, in The Pines on Wolf Bay. She moved there just months before from her Seaside Condo on the beach. God had a way of telling her she needed to go, NOW. She evacuated to my aunt's house in Wilsonville, AL. My uncle, who lives in Mobile, stayed behind and took shelter at the National Guard Armory where he was a reserve.

Traffic on I-65 on September 14 was horrific, even in Birmingham. There was no hotel, motel room to be had. It took me over an hour to get to work, which normally only took me 15 minutes. The license tags on the car were not only from Baldwin and Mobile counties, but Escambia (both FL and AL) Conecuh counties were tags that I recognized.

I had a terrible gut feeling... a feeling of doom, fear and sadness. It was like I knew my home away from home was about to change forever.

And it did.

In the early morning hours of Sept 16th, Ivan rolled ashore with furor. The aftermath was devestating. Hwy 182, was destroyed. Many condos were destroyed, and had to come down. Many popular restraunts, gone. The trees and shrubs were badly windburned. Hwy 59 was flooded - with water, furniture, appliances, and the alligators.

It was a week before my grandmother who lived in zone 13 was allowed back on the island. We feared the worst, she is 4 minutes from the beach, 1/2 block from Wolf Bay and just a few miles from the canal. We thought for sure she would be flooded out.

Fortuantely, not even a screen was out of place. She was lucky, being that she had just moved in, and didn't have hurricane shutters, and had to leave in such a hurry there was no time to get shutters, much less get one of us up here to come down and board her windows for her. The condo complex she lived in was severely damaged. The first floor was completely blown out, and the next two floors suffered serious water damage.

Two years later, most of the damaged houses are removed, and being replaced by high rise condos. Palms trees have been replaced, and restraunts have been rebuilt. You have to look really hard and know the area well to know what used to be where. The further East you go, into Florida, Perdido Beach and Pensacola, you can still see lots of damage. Florida didn't fare so well.

Playin' Catch Up!

Just in from a sunny few days in Orange Beach, AL for a visit with my grandmother.

My Granny is doing great, she has lost a ton of weight, her "drawers" won't stay up, and she has a spiky new do. Most important, she is healthy, energetic and cancer free now. I haven't seen her look this good in years.

Elijah loved the beach. This was his first time to actually touch the shoreline. He isn't afraid of the waves either, which means next time we go, I will have to get a shild safety harness with a leash to keep him from running me and everyone else silly. We fed the seagulls, and he was mesmerized by the number of birds that flew over us. I took pics, but they won't be back till next week. I forgot my camera and had to buy a disposable one.

Sam hung out on the beach. He loves surfing. Tony and me have talked many times about moving down there permanently (he is in the perfect position to transfer!) And I told Sam that he would be a surfer instead of skater. He isn't quite sure about that one though.

We discovered our favorite restraunt, Gulf Bay Seafood Restraunt on Canal Road has closed. This was a sister resturaunt to King Neptune's in Gulf Shores, only bigger and cleaner. They had a great seafood platter for two for only $50. And it was huge, full of steamed red royals, snow crab legs, blue crab legs, crab claws,raw oysters (YUCKY SLUGS), and the regular side items. Soooo.....

Tony and me discovered Cosmo's on Friday nite. Not a typical seafood place, more like a whimsical Ruby Tuesday that offers....


That is our favorite thing in the whole wide world. We were thrilled to discover this. Plus, I DID NOT go off of my diet. The whole trip. It wasn't hard. I am pretty motivated.

Speaking of which, after my next post, regarding Hurricane Ivan Recovery, I will be hitting the gym!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Changing Trends

It is about to be a different life again. A little more fun. I have purchased my weather station and it is on the way here from South Carolina. I cannot wait to get it up and running!

Tony and me went to Swamp John's in Alabaster. It is a new Catfish resturaunt that opened up a few weeks ago. I was thoroughly un-impressed. A friend told me it was like going into a dressed up Captain D's. I don't think they ate there, and that was probably a good thing too. They have nothing to choose from, just fried fish or fried shrimp. I hate anything that is fried. My french fries were cold, not even cooked all the way. The food is served in a cafeteria style buffet, you go and place your order and they place the cold fried food on a styro plate. People are friendly enough, but I give that place 6 months at the most.

Full Moon BBQ for dinner that night. I walked in to pick up our carry out, and the place smelled like heaven! Tony got a thing of ribs, and Elijah and me had bbq chicken sandwiches and coleslaw. Thumbs up!!

All this eating over the weekend has led Tony and I to have a discussion. About me. And my fat. He told me to make a lot of money on Ebay, we need that money to get me a brand new body. Sooooo... that little remark has cost him dearly. I signed up at a local gym for ladies, a luxury gym, with machines that have little fans on them, an indoor running track, massage therapy and a tanning bed. Oh and there is a sauna and steam room, a cafe with wireless internet and CHILDCARE!! Wooo!!
My personal trainer started me off today, lightly. She said in 6 weeks I will have a new body. And it will be a tanned one at that. So HA Tony! Eat your words NOW!!! In just 6 weeks, I will be going skinny dipping, while you my fat little friend will be going chunky dunkin!! And I cannot WAIT!!

Boys are gone till tommorrow. Going to go play some. More later!!

Friday, July 07, 2006

Needing An Energy Boost

I linger in the doorway
Of alarm clock screaming
Monsters calling my name
Let me stay
Where the wind will whisper to me
Where the raindrops
As they’re falling tell a story

In my field of paper flowers
And candy clouds of lullaby
I lie inside myself for hours
And watch my purple sky fly over me

~Imaginary by Evanescence

This is exactly how I feel this morning. I simply did not want to get up. Today will be a low key day. I will list a few jewelry pieces on Ebay then take it easy for the rest of the day, preferably by the pool with the kids.

I do have some incredible news though! My dear sweet husband has finally relented and has given me permission to buy what I have been wishing for for nearly a year now. It is a weather station, and not just any old kind. It is a Davis Vantage Pro 2 Wireless station, the same sophisticated instrument that our local weather team at abc 33/40 uses. I will be able to measure rainfall, by the day, hour minute and the year. Wind Speed, Dewpoint, Wind Chill and more, all from inside the house. I am one step closer to fulfilling a long, long time dream of some serious storm spotting. My friend Michael, ( also a weather geek like me ) has said he will help me get it set up when I get it, he has one too and loves it.

Next goal is getting my Amatuer Radio's License. I have the book, just need 2 weeks of peace and quiet so I can study for exams. Then I will get a hand held radio, and join spotter groups, SKYWARN and ALERT.

Coming soon to the world of blogs near you..... a weather blog for the Alabaster, AL area. I will be keeping a journal of sorts in this blog, of Alabaster storm stories, forecasts and daily readings.

So just thinking of those thing has given me the energy boost I need to get moving....

more later..... :)

Monday, July 03, 2006

More Farm Pics

More Farm Pics

Farm Pics

Here are some pics from our weekend at the farm. Be Sure to scroll down for more details.

City Slickers Go To The Farm

We had fun at my sister's farm just outside of Carthage MS.

I think I have gained 10 pounds. It shows. Tony said he could tell I ate a lot.

Because country farmer people are used to cooking on a massive scale, it is easy to overdo.

There were about 16 people there for my niece's party. Mostly my brother in law's family, who is a very lively, fun loving bunch.

We hung out outside most of the day. It is as dry in MS as it is here in Alabaster, AL. Elijah and Sarah played well, most of the time. When one of them did something the other didn't like, it turned into an inaudible screaming match between the two.

Sam, well, I hardly saw him. He was off in one pasture or the other or in the woods on the four wheelers with my nephew Aaron and his two cousins, Emily and Jennifer.

There were 76 acres of land we were on. It was so big and so peaceful. I regretted having to come home. I could live there, and never ever be bored.

Sarah had a great 2nd birthday. She got all kinds of stuff, mostly pink girly girl stuff. She likes to sing and dance, and is the prissiest thing you would ever meet.

We took Elijah to the barn to see the chickens. He didn't much like the way they smelled. But he was fascinated by the horses. Crazy Horse, who really is crazy was just as intrigued by Elijah as he was him. He stayed in the pasture across the street. Every time he saw Elijah, he would whine and come running to the fence, full speed ahead. He was really excited. But he was crazy and wild. We could never take Elijah near him.

We did put him on Daisy, a pretty grey and white horse that belongs to my brother in law. He didn't know what to think. He does want a horse though.

Sam, the last twenty minutes we were there had an accident on his four wheeler. He hit a bump while making a turn, and it slung him off the ATV like a rag doll. He has a 4 inch nasty gash on his knee that probably should have been stitched up, but we butterflied it shut. He was lucky. I am not crazy about him being on the 4 wheelers, but he is twelve, ad he needs to go and be a boy.

All in all it was a great time. I got to know some really wonderful people, and made new friends. I was really sad to leave.

Posting pictures - then got to go feed Elijah and do the shopping for groceries.

More later!!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

When The Cat Is Away, The Mice Will Play!

Tony is in Atlanta today, but he will be home tonight.

I did not do diddly squat yesterday as far as chores and such. Sam played on the computer and I played with Elijah.

Well, I did some other things. I took a package of Swarovski Crystal Jewelry to the post office, for shipping to South Africa.

I have never shipped anything to South Africa, nor have I ever seen a country with so many restrictions on what can be shipped from the USA.

Jewelry was one of them, apparently. No clue as to why, but as long as it is registered, it is ok to ship.

Upon returning from USPS, the Invisible Fence guy was at my neighbor Amy's house to repair the fence that had been struck by lightning a while back. She had told him to come and see me for any problems or questions.

Turns out, when he went to repair the electric box, he inadvertenly got into a hornet's nest and was stung a number of times on his arms and back. That poor guy then came over for some benedryl. He said he was allergic to bee stings, and was already swelling up.

So I medicated him, and checked him over for any loose stingers. (yes, he took his shirt off, and YES he was HOT!!)

After I felt he was ok to go ( I was concerned he would go into anaphylaxis and wanted be sure there were no symptoms of that) I grabbed a can of wasp spray (kind that shoots 25 feet) and gave it to him. I had already called Amy to tell her what had happened, and I needed to know where I could get the dog's electronic collar) He bravely went to the nest and sprayed, while I rifeled thru Amy's kitchen drawers for the collar.

After which the Hot Invisible Fence guy was going to test the collar to be sure the fence was working again. No need for that. I crossed the invisible line while holding the collar, and nearly electrocuted myself. I still can't feel my pinky finger!

So it was a fun afternoon. I watched Skeleton Key last night. Then dreamed I was Rachel on Friends and Chandler was hexed by some bad Voo Doo Curse.

Tommorrow we leave for Missisippi. Tony isn't going. Just me Dad and the boys. Sothat will be a few more days of fun.

More next week, I will post pictures of my family and exteneded family from the trip!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Just Stuff

Yesterday, after I finished with Ebay stuff, we went to see Granny, who is in town visiting my aunt.

She has lost so much weight from when she was sick with colon cancer. She is almost skinny! Now that she is "cured" she looks fantastic, has so much energy! It was great seeing her. I hope that when Tony goes to Mobile next week, we can come too and stay with her in Orange Beach!

Elijah started running a fever last night. I hope it isn't his ears - he has been in the water a lot and is prone to infections. If he still has a fever this afternoon, he is going back to Dr. P.

I have to list 10 items on ebay again today, I don't want to. I am so tired. But I know I have a nice break ahead, so I guess I gotta!

Got an Eagles song, Take it Easy going thru my head. I own several Eagles albums. Sam and his friend Tyler crack me up. They are really getting into the good stuff. Sam asked my dad if he had ever heard of Motley Crue. Poor man has heard more than he wanted to when I was in high school. I WORSHIPPED Tommy Lee the drummer, who Sam gets confused with Tommy Lee Jones. HUGE DIFFERENCE there! HA HA HA!!! And Tyler came into the kitchen the other night when I was prepping dinner, and asked me if I knew who the Black Crowes were. I told him that I was older than he thought, and used to like them when I was in school. I think it is really great they are listening to what Gen x'ers parents thought was horrible stuff. What is out there NOW is pretty bad! Think I will try my luck with Sam today, and bring out my Eagles CD. And some Queensryche. Now THATS an intelligent heavy metal band!!

Tony gave me some disturbing news..... the company he started working for 3 months ago has been sold. No one seems to know to whom, and MSG ain't telling. Apparently this was going on prior to his employment. So far no jobs have been lost, and Tony is as busy as ever, if not more. I can tell he is worried but he said his job there is secure and isn't going anywhere. I hope he is right.

Better go start on the Ebay stuff. Perhaps it won't take too terribly long!! I can't wait till Friday- too bad we cannot leave on Thurday night! Tony whined this morning, "but you won't see me for five whole days!!"

I just smiled.