Thursday, May 29, 2014

It Was My Off Week

As I'm sure you know, I work out with a trainer on Tuesday and Thursday nights as part of a Women on Weights Class. There are six of us girls who get together and enjoy being tortured by our trainer Josh. Actually, it's a lot of fun, a good stress reliever and one of the best parts of my week. There's a lot to be said for sweatin' to the oldies, or something like that. 

Every seventh week is our off week; although we usually end up meeting at least one of those nights for make-up classes. This week was our seventh week and we did, in fact, have one make up class scheduled. I asked the girls if we could meet on Thursday because I wanted to go to family dinner on Tuesday at my Aunt Linda's house. Everyone was kind enough to oblige me and so we scheduled our make-up session for Thursday. 

On Tuesday night, I joined my Aunt Linda and a slew of my cousins for dinner. We had BBQ and I brought dessert and we just generally had a fun time, or at least I did. Every Tuesday night this crew gets together and I hate that I am unable to be there every week because it was seriously so great for me to spend time with these fun family members of mine. We talked and laughed and really, I didn't want to leave, but The Pip needed a bathroom break I have no doubt and so I was resigned to leave about 7:30 p.m. 

Then came Thursday and honestly, I was ready. It had been (another) stressful week and I was looking forward to a good workout and sweating and laughing with the girls at the gym while I complained about all the hard stuff we had to do, but secretly enjoying it at the same time. When I walked into  work on Thursday morning, I must have been thinking about my agenda for the day because this was when I realized I had left my gym bag at home. 

I knew what was ahead of me at work and it didn't look good for going home and changing clothes before my 6:00 session. By mid-day, what had been a fairly open afternoon turned into meetings from noon through 4:30 and I realized there wasn't much hope of me getting home to change clothes. So, I decided that I would just use the evening to mow the grass instead, at least it would be some form of physical activity. Then, about 3:00 it started raining which ruled out mowing. I was striking out all over the board. 

So, I just decided to get some Big Ed's Pizza and go home and be lazy. I have felt guilty about it, no doubt because I do not like being lethargic and inactive, but there was just no way for me to get home, get changed and get to the gym on time and there was also no way for me to mow since the lawn was sopping wet and it was still raining. It is extremely rare for me to have a night with nothing going on during the week. Tuesdays and Thursdays I'm at the gym, Wednesdays are church, every other Monday I have Bible study and the off weeks always get filled with something and usually Fridays are spent mowing or hanging out with friends, or what have you. So, I resigned myself to just enjoy the evening with The Pip and I can get back to the gym next week. 

Plus, one of my favorite events of the year was on TV Thursday night and I was able to watch it with no interruptions. That's right folks, the 2014 National Spelling Bee was on TV and I enjoyed every minute of it. I am amazed at these kids and the words they spell. It is sometimes nail biting fun, especially when it gets down the the last three of four spellers. If you didn't check it out on Thursday, then you should definitely check it out next year. It is must see TV and good quality entertainment!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Second Half of Memorial Day Weekend

Sunday morning I was slated to bring breakfast for our class at church. I had decided on sausage balls and cinnamon rolls and thankfully I had the good sense to take care of the rolling and dough making on Saturday. So, Sunday morning, all I had to do was plop the rolls and the sausage balls in the oven. I left for church earlier than normal so I could carry my haul into the building. It's times like these that a husband would really be useful because carrying a large bag that contains a crockpot full of sausage balls, a Bible, notebook, and class book, utensils, and  a cooler bag of orange juice, along with a purse and holding a pan of cinnamon rolls in the other hand is no easy feat. Somehow I managed. It's also times like these that it amazes me that no one offers to help; but, hey, I survived. 

Breakfast was a big hit and class went off without a hitch. After class was over, I was in the mood for seafood, which meant Red Lobster, so I ventured out for a solo lunch of stuffed Flounder which was truly delicious and absolutely hit the spot. You will also receive fast service and quick food when you dine by yourself. I didn't even look at the menu because I knew what I wanted and as soon as the waiter came over, I ordered which probably helped. 

When my lunch was complete, I went home and attempted a nap, but that was pretty much impossible as the Pip was in a fired up mood and would not leave me alone. I even moved to the bedroom and she moved in there with me. Sometimes she just doesn't want me to rest. I went to evening service and then out to Jason's Deli with my Aunt Linda and the girls. I still had not redeemed the free meal I had won from dropping my business card in the fish bowl last December and so I redeemed that. I honestly wasn't too hungry so I ate my side salad and took my half sandwich home to eat the next day. 

I hit up the Red Box after dinner and got The Monuments Men and Dallas Buyers Club and watched one on Sunday night and one on Monday morning. Both of the movies were good and it was definitely an Oscar worthy performance for Matthew MccCnaughey and Jared Leto, both of whom should have won an award just for the massive weight loss. Good grief. 

Monday morning I had grand plans of watching the Cotton Row runners and then going to the movies, but on Sunday night I discovered a nail in my tire and I scheduled an appointment at Goodyear which conflicted with the morning movie time. As far as watching the runners, well, I was just lazy and it was hot outside so I stayed home. 

My appointment at Goodyear was at noon. I got the oil changed and asked them to check the tire which is either fine or they patched it for free, but I did see them take the tire off and check it so hopefully all is well. For all I know, I could have been looking at a flat piece of gravel that gave the impression of a nail head. Who knows? I haven't had my tire pressure light come on or anything of the sort so I guess I'm good to go for a while. 

I did make it to the movies a little bit later on. I met Jackie for Million Dollar Arm which was really good. I laughed super loud and even cried a time or two. It was a very good movie and I don't think there was much bad language if any at all so it would be a good movie to take the children to. 

The rest of Monday was spent at home which was just how I wanted it. Sometimes when you have a day off, it's nice to just be able to do what you want to do and that is exactly how I spent this holiday, which was perfect. 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The First Half of Memorial Day Weekend

I cannot even begin to tell you how welcome and refreshing this past three-day weekend was. I told Jackie that I think the next president should mandate a three-day weekend at least once a month. I know it was just one more day, but it just made the weekend that much better. Sometimes one more day is all you need and it was certainly perfect timing as far as I am concerned. 

The weekend began with Jackie coming over Friday night for some burger grilling. I had invited some of our other friends as well, but they had conflicts and so it ended up being just me and Jackie, which was fine by us. We spent about five hours catching up and talking. You would think we never see or talk to one another. We talk almost every day, but apparently we don't ever have time to get to the juicy stuff and so that's what we did on Friday. 

We sat out on the porch like old times and watched the comings and going of Five Points and let me tell you there is never a dull moment when you are people watching from your front porch in Five Points. There were various cars driving by; some of which stopped in front of a house down the street and kept backing up and then driving forward - can you say stalker? There were numerous people coming and going to and from my next door neighbor Tina's house. She always has an eclectic group of friends stopping by. There were people walking their dogs throughout the evening. However, the most interesting observance of the evening was the new guy who moved in across the street (next door to Jeff). 

The house next to Jeff has been a rental since I first moved in and I'm sure I've mentioned it before. The first tenant to live there was a woman and her son who had lived there for a while and then she got a job in DC and they moved. Since then we've had a plethora of individuals. Everyone from a women who came out in her panties to  a couple that broke up and then got back together. The house had been in need of some repairs and so after the last tenants moved out, the owner did some renovating and listed it again. It took many months this go around before a new tenant was found and it looks to be a guy in his 20s. Apparently this guy does not have a vehicle and a woman (we are assuming his mom) was driving him to and from the house. The only thing I saw him move in was a TV. I'm assuming he moved in other items while I was at work on Friday. He was not wearing a shirt and basically looked like a hoodlum. At one point, he left and came back 30 minutes or and hour later with a bag from the grocery store. Upon further observation throughout the weekend, I'm assuming this guy has moved out on his home for perhaps the first time. Either that or he has had some issues and his family is giving him another shot at living on his own. Either way, this is sure to provide loads of Mrs. Kravitz type neighborhood watching. 

On Saturday morning, I had a haircut, then hit up Target to kill about an hour before heading over to the movie theater to take in a viewing of X-Men: Days of Future Past which was seriously amazing. After the movie, I did some grocery shopping and then went home to be lazy. Saturday evening, Jackie and I went out on the town, or really just to Drake's for dinner. I had never been there and she had said the sushi was surprisingly good and it was in fact surprisingly good. We ran into various people that we know and basically felt like the most popular people in Huntsville, or something like that. 

It was a busy couple of days for the first half of Memorial Day weekend, relaxing and fun, filled with laughter and friends and that's exactly how I like it! 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

You Betcha!

It's graduation season and in Huntsville that means the traffic downtown is completely insane as people are leaving and going to the VBC. I had forgotten how crazy it gets around the VBC this time of year. Last year during graduation season, I was in California. So, it's been a while since I've had to deal with all the graduation traffic.

As I'm sure most of you know, Sarah Palin spoke at the New Hope High graduation on Wednesday night. For those of you who may not be from this area, New Hope is a small school in Madison County and so a lot of folks were surprised that this little school was able to score such a big name for commencement.

As it turns out, the grandmother of one of the graduates has developed a sort of friendship with Palin over the years after she won a dinner with Palin a few years ago. The grandmother asked Palin to come and Palin agreed, and an anonymous donor paid Palin's speaker fees. It's a really neat story I think.

Since Palin was sure to garner a lot of (perhaps unwanted) attention, it was decided that a ticket would be required for entrance to the graduation. My dad is a substitute teacher at New Hope from time to time and so he managed to get his hands on four tickets. However, since he had no one to stay with my mom for the night, he couldn't go and so that left me with four tickets. I asked about 10 different people about going with me and no one could make it for one reason or another and so I ended up just going by myself.

The service started at 8:00 p.m. and was on time, which was a pleasant surprise. There were 77 kids graduating and I think the longest part of the night was the time it took for them all to march in. In total, the service lasted about an hour and 10 minutes. Palin's speech took place towards the end of the ceremony, right before the diplomas were handed out. My dad had heard rumor that a lot of people were planning on leaving after Palin spoke, but I'm pleased to announce only a handful of people were rude enough to do that. It appeared to me that most everyone stayed for the whole service and I was glad to see that.

I was surprised that there were a ton of empty seats in the arena. The news stations had said that all tickets were taken, but it appears that a lot of people didn't use their tickets. Palin's speech was obviously geared towards the graduated but her overall message of standing up for what you believe in and making a difference in this great country of ours can be and should be taken to heart by all in attendance.

I was back home before 9:30 p.m. and I'm glad I took the time and had the opportunity to go. It was a nice evening and so special for all those graduates. Thanks to my dad for getting me the ticket, and good luck to all the graduates of 2014!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Come and Hear These Children Sing

Sunday morning I got up bright and early and put the finishing touches on my dishes for potluck, got ready for church and was out the door by 8:00 a.m. Being a single gal with many potluck dishes means multiple trips from the car to the church building so I wanted to make sure I had ample time to get everything to the kitchen and get to "my" pew. I pulled under the portico and unloaded everything in about four trips. I managed to situate all the food on hips and in arms to carry to the kitchen, but one of the dishes was very hot and so I recruited someone I ran into to help me about halfway to the kitchen. Once all the food was situated, I went back to collect the rest of my belongings and made my way to my seat. 

Our potluck was after class and it was the first time our class (which has been meeting about a year now) had ever had a potluck; so, I think we were all a little nervous about what kinds of food might show up at the potluck table. As it turns out, the potluck was a huge success. We had a variety of foods which when put together made a complete meal. We had meats, veggies, salads, desserts and bread, and we had tea and sodas to drink. It all turned out nicely and I think everyone was pleased with the outcome. 

When lunch was over, we cleaned up the serving utensils we had used from the church kitchen, put the tables away and headed our separate ways. I got home a few minutes after 1:00 p.m., let Pip out for a few minutes and then laid down on the couch to rest my eyes before the next outing on my calendar. Troy had a choir concert at his school at 3:00 p.m. which Jackie had told me about earlier in the week. I had asked her if tickets were required or if it was a come and hear these children sing type of event. No tickets were required at the door, and so about 2:30 p.m., I finally managed to get up from the sofa, put Pip in the crate and head out the door. As luck would have it, there was a lone parking spot right at the front of the school and so I snagged it and headed inside. 

The concert got started right on time if not a minute or two sooner. The children sang about five or six songs and Troy had a solo on the last song, "Why We Sing." He did a fantastic job! The concert only lasted about 30 minutes which was kind of disappointing because I was really enjoying it and honestly it expected it to last an hour or so. They also had a man (whose name I have since forgotten) play the piano to accompany the children. At one point during the show, he did a solo performance of "Alabama Jubilee" which was phenomenal! His fingers were moving so super fast! What's more is that this guy totally looked like a thinner version of Cam from Modern Family and so that gave me and Jackie a chuckle. 

After the concert, there was a reception in the cafeteria and so we stopped by there for a few minutes to chat and take some photos with the little singer. We wrapped things up around 4:00 p.m. or so and parted ways. I then headed to Publix on Whitesburg to pick up a couple of items that the downtown store didn't have on Saturday and then went to church. 

I got home from church not long after 6:00 p.m. and spent the rest of the evening watching "Call the Midwife" and "Mr. Selfridge", both of which were excellent. I love PBS on Sunday nights, y'all, and it was a great way to conclude what seemed like a super busy weekend!

"Cam" the Piano Player

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

And I Don't Even Like Goat Cheese

Saturday was a rather eventful and somewhat strange day. It went by so quickly. Seriously, one minute I woke up and then next thing I knew it was 7:00 p.m. The day started with laundry and a little cleaning and then I headed out to meet my cousins and my dad for breakfast at Galen's in New Hope. We met up around 8:00 a.m. and enjoyed some really yummy breakfast. It was my treat because my cousins (Chris and Benny) were moving a picnic table across town for me and my dad because he's my dad and goodness knows he's paid for my breakfast enough times in my life. 

We wrapped up breakfast shortly after 9:00 a.m. and headed to South Huntsville. Would you believe that it was my first time down Hobbs Island Road? As long as I've lived in Huntsville, I've never driven Hobbs Island (or ridden down it that I can recall) from New Hope to South Huntsville (or vice versa). It's a really pretty drive and there are some lovely homes along the way. Who knew? 

My co-worker had received some new patio furniture for Mother's Day and so she was getting ridw of a picnic table that she had and as it turns out I have actually wanted a picnic table for a while, but never taken the plunge to buy one. To make the deal even sweeter, the table was originally came from our church and so it has a nice story/history to go along with it. Since I don't have a truck and can't lift a table all on my own, my sweet cousins agreed to help me, and let me add that it was raining which makes their deed even nicer than if it had not been raining. 

We managed to get the picnic table back to my house and unloaded by about 10:30 a.m. and then we parted ways. I ran inside, let Pip out for a quick second and then ran back out the door to take care of a couple of things. 

My first stop was the grand opening of the Belle Chevre Cheese Shop at Clinton Row in Downtown Huntsville which was scheduled to open at 11:00 a.m.. While I was at the food truck fiasco on Friday night, the folks from Belle Chevre were out and about announcing the grand opening and inviting everyone to come out. They told us the first 100 people to come to the opening would receive a year of free cheese. For those of you who do not know, Belle Chevre is in Elkmont, Alabama (about 45 minutes from Huntsville) and they hand make artisan goat cheese. The company has really grown in recent years and I actually first found out about it when reading a Southern Living magazine back around Christmastime. Since I'm not one to pass up a good opportunity, I went downtown, noticed the line wasn't too long, found a parking spot, jumped out and got in line and was one of the lucky 100 people to get a year's worth of free goat cheese. 

To be honest, I'm not sure I've ever had goat cheese prior to Saturday; but since everyone has been raving about Belle Chevre, I figured it must be the greatest thing since sliced bread. We got a cheesecake sample while in line and I noticed it had an aftertaste that reminded me of the great outdoors, or goats and that had me a little leery of what the cheese may taste like. When I finally made it inside (about 30 minutes after opening), I grabbed a tub of coffee flavored goat cheese to try on my morning bagel. When I got to the counter, I tried the pimento cheese which was good, but then had that aftertaste. I took home the coffee cheese and tried it for breakfast on Monday. I managed to stomach about half the bagel. On Tuesday, I gave it another go and ate maybe one third of the bagel. I've come to the conclusion that goat cheese is not for me, y'all. The aftertaste is very, well, goaty, and I don't really care for it at all. So, I'll be finding someone or multiple someones to share the remainder of my year of free cheese with because I will not let it go to waste. 

When I left Belle Chevre, I headed to Publix for my weekly shopping trip. I ended up going to the downtown Publix (the new one) because I didn't want to drive over to my regular Publix on Whitesburg. As a result, I have determined that the downtown Publix is not for me and will only be used for quick grab and go runs. I felt like a nervous wreck the whole time I was there because I had no idea where anything was and I backtracked about 10 times and I truly hate backtracking at the grocery store. Miraculously, I managed to eventually find everything I needed and I was also able to register for all the giveaways that I missed on opening day. I also registered for the daily prize which is given away every 30 minutes (you must be present to win) and noticed there were no entries in the box so I felt pretty confident I would win and I did. The prize was a chocolate dessert cup which did not have a goaty aftertaste was was quite delicious. 

I finally made it back home and unloaded and put away the groceries and then laid down on the couch with The Pip and napped for a couple of hours. The rest of Saturday was spent cleaning, cooking for Sunday potluck, and doing laundry, all while wearing an apron. I looked at myself at one point and had never more felt like my Grandmamma than I did in that moment...and that's not a bad thing. Overall, it was an interesting, adventurous, and tiring day which equals a successful Saturday in my book. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

I'm Baaaack!

Y'all - first of all, I am alive. I'm sure some of you were wondering. Last week was probably the number one most chaotic week of my current professional career. I assure you I've had more chaotic weeks working in sports and also politics, but as far as my current profession, last week takes the far. I had a customer in town and about a million things going on each day and in the evenings and by the time I finally did get home each night, I literally washed my face, crawled into bed, turned on the hockey game and fell asleep. It was crazy busy and I'm so, so glad it's over; although this week has started out hectic as well but I promise to try my best and get some blogging done for you all. 

Other than work, there's not much else to write about in regards to last week. The highlight of the week was Monday night when we had our women's Bible study at my friend Leah's house. So, I'll fast forward to Friday. I had every intention of leaving work around 4:30 p.m. and finally made it out the door about 20 minutes after 5:00 p.m. It was typical and not surprising based on the week I was having. 

My plan for Friday was to go to the second Food Truck Friday and to get there early so I wouldn't have to stand in line forever like I did last month. This month instead of having the event at the Lumberyard off of Meridian Street, the even was held downtown at Fountain Circle by City Hall. I got there around 5:40 and already people were lined up at all of the trucks. I wanted to try the Rollin' Lobstah truck and have a Lobster Roll and of course, it was the longest line. I decided to go ahead and stand in line because this might be the shortest I would ever see the line for this food truck. 

I stood in line for about an hour before making it to the window. The people behind me were pretty cool and I chatted with them from time to time. The girl in front of me was a self-entitled twenty-something and when she reached the window, her friend came out of nowhere and was going to place an order as well. I tapped the friend on the shoulder and told her the line was way back the other way and she proceeded to tell me she wasn't ordering anything and then did. It was at this point I hoped she would spill her food all over the white jeans she was wearing. I shared this thought out loud with the girl who had been behind me in line and she said she was about to say the same thing. Apparently I'm not the only one who doesn't care for self entitled high maintenance twenty somethings. 

I finally got my food which was good, but not worth the hour wait and $11 that I paid for it. I ate it while sitting in my car because I was very hungry and wanted to eat it before I got home and had a dog begging at my feet. The rest of the night was spent watching TV and doing laundry and even cleaning the bathroom. I was exhausted after such a stressful week and was just glad to be home with nothing in particular to do. It was a rather nice start to a very busy weekend. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mother's Day Weekend 2014

It was a busy weekend for me and I'm sure it was for most of you too. Mother's Day tends to be busy for a lot of folks.

Friday afternoon I met Jackie for dinner at I Love Sushi. It had actually been a few months since I had been there and so I was glad she picked it as our meeting place. After dinner, she headed to Nashville to stay the night with her sister, and I went to Publix. I went to the one on Whitesburg and picked up what I needed to complete Mother's Day lunch.

Saturday morning I got up about 6:00 a.m. and immediately began cooking. I had broken the green beans the night before; so. I put those on to cook as well as the chicken and then baked a cake. Long story short, I spent the whole day cooking, doing laundry, getting some cleaning done and then, because it didn't rain I had to mow the grass as well. All week long, the weather folks had said it was going to be a torrential downpour on Saturday and it didn't rain a drop. I had been looking forward to a rainy Saturday, but it was not meant to be.

Sunday after church, I took all the food over to my parents house and fed the family for Mother's Day. We had chicken casserole, green beans, corn, salad, and chocolate cake. We just had crescent rolls because I didn't make homemade rolls. I actually had a new recipe I wanted to try but ran out of time.

When lunch was over, I took my grandmother home and then took The Pip and I home and then fell asleep on the couch. It was later in the day that I normally get home on Sundays and I forgot to set an alarm on my clock so by the time I woke, it was past time for evening worship. That's how it goes sometimes I guess. I was pretty tuckered out, and so was Pippa because she didn't move a muscle.

It was a good, productive, busy weekend. I am thankful I was able to spend some time with the family and with my mamma. Hope all you moms had a great Mother's Day and were able to spend it with the ones you love.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

My Mailbox Project

A couple of weeks ago when I got home from the gym, I do as I always do and went to check the mail. I am not even remotely kidding when I say that I opened the door to the mailbox and it literally toppled over. Now, my mailbox has always been a little wobbly, but not so wobbly that I felt it might topple over.

My first thought was that our crazy mailman had hit it and when I asked my neighbor Jeff if he had seen anyone hit it, he said no, but that it was probably the crazy mailman. Great minds think alike I suppose. Thankfully Jeff had a cinder block and I was able to rig the mailbox up via cinder block so I could still receive mail until I had time to fix it up properly.

A couple of days later, when the weekend rolled around, I got to work on the mailbox project. I had looked at possibly getting a new mailbox, but mailboxes are not cheap, y'all. So, instead, I bought some spray paint and decided to give my mailbox a makeover before sticking it back in the ground.

I got the mailbox (all but the flag) painted up and dried and then put it in the ground with some Quick Crete so that maybe it would be a little more stable than it was before. I got it painted and in the ground just in time too because it started raining the next day.

This past Friday, I finished up the mailbox project by painting the flag a bright red and if you ask my, the mailbox looks about as good as it every has since I moved in. I still have some numbers to put on it and I guess I need to do tat sometime soon, but for now it's just plain and looks nice I think.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A Year Later, There are New Beginnings

It's been a year since The Tide went on to dog heaven. A whole year. It is so hard to believe that she has been gone that long. There's not a day that goes by that I don't think about her and miss her. She was a good dog, y'all! The best really. I think she will always be the number one dog in my heart and I will always miss her.

I've thought a lot about her the past couple of days, relived the moment she collapsed, thought about how she cried out when I left her alone in the bedroom, thought about having to make the decision to put her down. There were a lot of similarities about this weekend in 2014 and the same weekend one year ago. One year ago on Saturday I saw Iron Man 3 at the movie theater. This year, I went to see Captain America. Last year on Sunday I had lunch at Casa Blanca; this year on Sunday, I did the same. I think the only real difference in the same weekend in two different years is that last year it was raining like mad and this year the weather was beautiful - like a new beginning.

I thought today, THE day, would be incredibly sad. It wasn't. I was too busy at work and church to dwell on it, which was a blessing and so there wasn't really time to dwell on the sadness of one year ago. There was, however, happiness to overshadow the sadness. The first bit of happiness was that my cousin Ashley gave birth to a beautiful and big baby boy. He was born at 12:27 a.m. - life to replace and overshadow death.

The second happy thing that happened today was that the newest friendly neighborhood Publix opened in Huntsville. This one is less than four miles from my house and sits across from the hospital at the new Twickenham Square development. I was so excited when I heard they were building a Publix there and so, of course, I had to visit on opening day.

Y'all, it was a madhouse. They built a parking garage across from it so it makes it seem like a big city grocery store. The parking garage was packed and there were people everywhere. I seriously didn't expect that many people to be there. I walked the perimeter of the store and picked up the three things I needed and left as quick as possible. I didn't even get a chance to register for all the giveaways! I'll give it another go in a week or so after all the excitement settles down and maybe it won't be as insane as it was today.

So, what could have been a terribly sad day was blessed with new beginnings. A new baby cousin and a new neighborhood grocery store - happiness to overshadow the sadness this day holds. I say happiness trumps sadness any day of the week and I'm glad this day had a silver lining.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mowing and a Trip to the Movies and a Birthday

Other than our dreadful softball loss, the rest of the weekend went rather well I think. Friday afternoon after work I went home, changed clothes and immediately began the yard work. I knew if I sat down for even one minute I might not get up again; and so I just got after it so I wouldn't be tempted to lie on the couch all afternoon. 

The lawnmower was a wee bit finicky which was not surprising in the least. I have bad luck with lawnmowers it seems and so I just kind of expect to have problems each time I'm ready to mow. This time around, the problem was that after the lawnmower started it would shut off after running for all of five seconds. You may (or may not recall) that I had this same problem last year and my cousin Chris was able to get the mower working again. Then a month or so later I had the same problem and I had someone else look at it and that time it appeared to be bad gas (no pun intended) that was causing the mower not to run after more than five seconds. This time... I have no idea. 

I got busy picking up dog poo and other things while I left my mowing frustrations subside and then got the strange idea to run with the mower after it got started so I could get five seconds of mowing in instead of no seconds. After running with the mower three or four times (and still having it stop after about five seconds) it miraculously worked better on the fifth go and as long as I ran with the mower it would keep running. I'm sure it was an interesting sight. Finally, thank goodness, after it got warmed up, it worked without my having to run behind it and I was able to mow like a normal person. I was done with all the yard work by 7:00 and even finished my little project I mentioned last week. I need to take a photo of it so I can let you all see how it turned out. 

Saturday morning I got up early and did a little cleaning and laundry and then went to the 9:45 a.m. showing of Captain America. This movie has been out for weeks, but I haven't had an opportunity to go see it until last Saturday. For a while I thought I was going to be the only one in the theater, but then a pre-teen boy and his mom came in and sat a couple of rows behind me and then a pre-teen boy and his dad came in and sat a couple of rows behind me as well, and then a pre-teen boy and his grandma came in and literally sat right in front of me. I was just as thrilled as you can imagine. Apparently Captain America is the movie for pre-teen boys. Thankfully the grandma group didn't sit in the seat directly in front of me, but the two to the left of the one in front of me and so I was still able to prop my feet up from time to time. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. It was very, very good. However I got a little perturbed at grandma on more than one occasion because not only was she was a talker, but she was a LOUD talker. I shushed her on more than one occasion. 

After the movie, I went to Publix for my weekly shopping trip and then back home to watch some TV and do some more of those chores that don't ever seem to go away. Saturday evening, I went over to my parents' house to celebrate my brother's birthday. He turned 34 on Saturday. My dad cooked a dinner of Fettuccine Alfredo with shrimp and fish and also made some sweet potato pies which my brother wanted instead of cake. (I know, he's weird.) The Pip came to the party too and learned a new trick of how to lie down. I've been practicing with her ever since and she is doing pretty good. 

When the party was drawing to an end, I took my grandmother home and then took myself home. I needed to put sheets on the bed and finish up some things around the house before calling it a night. It was another good weekend; but, as always, just not long enough. 

Monday, May 5, 2014


So, there were various activities that took place over the weekend, but today I shall tell you about our latest softball adventure. As you may recall, Jackie and I are playing softball on Sunday nights with some of our friends from church. Lately most of our games have gotten rained out, so there hasn't been much to blog about. Last night, however, we were finally able to play.

At lunch on Sunday afternoon, Jackie and I were talking about all the guys who were out of town or injured and started getting a little nervous that we might not have enough people to play. So, a group text was sent out and that didn't make anyone feel any better. We ended up with 11 people, four guys and seven girls and most of the girls are playing for the first time.

In addition to the fact that we were playing with a slim roster, we were also a little rusty. Thanks to all the rain outs, we are averaging one game a month. So, it's not like we are in the habit of playing and we don't really have practices since only a few people ever come when a practice is organized.

On top of the slim roster and the rustiness, we were also playing the best team in the league which didn't help the mentality of some of us (me, for one).

I think it probably goes without saying that the cards were stacked against us. The other team batted first and scored 18 runs in the first inning. We scored two. I'll spare you the rest of the details, but we ended up losing by a lot. So much, in fact, that I don't even know the score and they called the game with 20 minutes left to play (we play for an hour) which really made us less than happy because they could have at least humored us and let us get some batting practice in.

It was a lesson in humility, that is for sure. I did have a lot of fun, and I kept reminding everyone that we were just doing this for fun, remember? We don't have any more games until June 8 - weird, I know  - and so, we've decided that a scrimmage game is in order before our next game and we are hoping to get something scheduled for the 31st of May or 1st of June so that we might be better prepared for our next game.

It sucks to lose, I'm not gonna lie, but I'm still grateful to be having such a fun time with my friends and getting in some physical activity to boot. Here's to the Mayfair Misfits finishing out the season with nothing but Ws!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Happy May Day!

It's May first, y'all and I don't know about you, but for me, 2014 is passing by super quickly. Today was not only the first day of May, but also the first Thursday of May and that meant the opening of the Greene Street Market downtown.

In case you are not familiar with Greene Street Market, it takes place every Thursday night May-October on Greene Street across from the Church of the Nativity. There are all kinds of delicious fruits and veggies for sale. There are also a wide variety of homemade cheeses, breads, etc. and there are even vendors that have homemade soaps, art, and gourds.

I wanted to stop by after the gym and so I did just that. When I went to Food Truck Friday with Paul and Leah a couple of weeks ago, Leah brought her Piper and Leaf Mason Jar to get some tea and it was so good. I knew that Piper and Leaf was going to be at Greene Street and so I stopped by and got a Mason Jar of my own. You can bring it back for a half price refill at whatever location they are set up. I got the Front Porch tea, which is what Leah had that Friday night and it hit the spot. It was so, so good.

I had the intention of picking up something for dinner while I was there but since I was by myself I felt kind of strange meandering around and staring at all the tables. For some reason I feel a lot more comfortable with a friend by my side at these sorts of things. So, I didn't want to tarry to long for fear someone might think I am a stalker or something. Perhaps one day I will go by myself and not feel like a stalker.

I did manage to buy half a gallon of strawberries. I love strawberries and yes, locally grown strawberries are more expensive than ones you can pick up at the grocery store; but, the taste is 1,000 times better and sweeter and really worth the extra cost if you ask me.

So, from now until October the Greene Street Market will be open downtown, and I encourage you to stop by and take in what will definitely be a fun evening and supporting local farmers and companies. It's a win-win for everyone!