Monday, June 30, 2008

Lazy Weekend

The weather here has been abnormally dry. While it's never as humid (well not never, but hardly ever) as DC, we still get some of the humidity of the south. This weekend was sunny, breezy and just about perfect. On Sunday, we enjoyed the front porch, even though the floor has yet to be painted. (The "boys" are doing that as we speak.) The rest of it is brilliantly white. The hub and I took turns on the porch swing and then switched during the day to rock in one of the mistrewed rocking chairs. I wasn't about to put everything back where it belonged as I knew they would be back this morning. Yawwwwwn. Early.

While I was away, Sherrie and mom planted some pretty flowers in her yard and even a tomato plant. It's growing like gangbusters! The kid and I had bought her some hanging geraniums for Mother's Day, so the back is really looking nice. The grass is already dead, but who cares? Mom's yard still looks nice in spite of the dead grass.

I'm trying to get her to go out and sit during the day rather than sit in front of the TV all day. So, I've been going down and we've been sitting in the afternoon while the sprinkler runs. It's so relaxing. There's something about hearing a sprinkler that brings back childhood memories. The lawn mowers frazzle my brain, but the sprinkler, I love it!

When mom and I sit quietly, it's just like old times. I forget the stage she's in and we just sit and relax. She even started clapping at one point, she always loved to listen to music and always had the radio playing during the day. I miss the old mom, terribly. But she has really been in a good frame of mind since my return. I even coaxed her into putting on a short-sleeve shirt rather than her normal summer attire--several layers of turtle necks! Oooooof. We found this beautiful Tai shirt at a yard sale when she was still up and running several years ago.

I loved the look of the sun screen as it flowed in the wind. It was like a big ol' sail. So peaceful.

When I came back upstairs, Dave was enjoying the setting sun and the warm floor. Aw, summatime!

Saturday, June 28, 2008


What's everyone doing for the Fourth? We're heading back down to Riverside; but I always decorate here at home too. I have a few new items that I found in Fairhope that I will be putting out soon. I'm in search of the perfect Americana table square to use. Will keep you posted.

Gosh, yesterday afternoon when I was doing the party outfit post, I got sicker than all get out! The hub and teenager had told me they had come down with this stomach yuk while I was away; and I think that's what hit me. It started with nausea and then got really bad. I had to take a compazine, which I keep on hand to help when I get a bad case of vertigo. I don't believe I have had stomach cramps like that ev-Ver. I could almost feel the entire outline of my stomach as the cramps hit. Ouch. The comp set in and of course it knocked me out. Thank goodness. I took it easy last night and the hub and kid brought me back some wonton soup and a coke (for all that ails ya!) and I took another compazine before bed just to make sure I made it through the night. I did. Today I feel fine. I was going to meet up with Bethy but dare not give her this nasty half-day bug. Ew. She has enough on her plate right now. But it's all better today but still watching what I'm eating--ew.

Painters still here. I've been sitting with mom on and off all day so she knows that it's ok to have men all over the back yard. I can't wait for them to leave so I can go water all the flowers back there! It's actually been a gorgeous day--breezy and not humid. Yay! The house is looking good! Boy, I don't know why I put off things as long as I do. The back of the house was horrid with peeling paint and all. It's gets all the sun and weather and last summer just about did it in with the record heat. I'm so happy that it's getting done. But I will be even happier once it's finished and I don't have six million guys running around the place. I'm sure the neighbors will be happy too. With those gazillion guys come all those white trucks. Those poor guys though. I've done pickets before, and they're a bee-otch. And we have four porches of them! Ouch.

Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. I'm still trying to catch up on reading all "my" blogs.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Summer Birthday Bash

Creature Comforts is having a birthday bash complete with a delightful giveaway on June 28th. My outfit, above, compliments of, took me all afternoon to put together (at which time I could not even finish this post as I literally got a stomach ached--hehe.) My gift to Ez to help celebrate her first year in blogland is a case of Moet & Chandon (maybe two if there is a large turnout.)

Hey, we can all dream, right? The color is wrong for me, I would never "fit" into such a lovely dress nor wear such high heels; but it all looked so sweet and summery, I couldn't resist my fantasy wear. I couldn't help but think "Samantha" from Sex and the City. Yea, right, dream on girl. ha! I'm about two feet shorter and three feet rounder! But back in the day before thyroid malfunctions, kids and lots and lots of really good food . . . . perhaps.

Again, a big shout out to Ez for her first blogaversary! Wooot!

Hope to see you there!

PS I did spy some cupcakes being brought also. So, who would want to miss champagne and cupcakes? Not me!

Home Again, Home Again

Jiggitty Jig.

I've never seen so many white trucks and ladders in all my day. Of course, I arranged to get the house trim painted before I left for Riverside. It was supposed to begin next week. Then I would have had time upon my return to clean the porches off, remove the screens, etc. before they began. But nooooooo. They started on Wednesday of this week. I had also called a company to come and trim the shrubs growing through the pickets in the porch before I left, and they were supposed to come last week and get that done. When I drove up from driving seven hours, that was the first thing I noticed. I just about blew a gasket. In fact, I may have actually blown one, perhaps even two. These are the same guys who planted an entire hedgerow last spring and forgot to turn the sprinkler system on. When we arrived back from spring break, every new bush was completely DEAD. This is the same team who mulched over a landscaping light which in turn started smoldering (for over two days before the fire department could find it) and could have caught the house on fire two winters back. I don't know why I still use them. Well, actually I don't. Of course, I arrived home after 4 and only had a little time to find someone before 5 to get here first thing this morning. Ya think I have the equipment to trim? Not on your life! I've tried trimming hedges. Kind of like cutting bangs. You just keep going and keep going to get them straight and end up with barely nothing! Remember in grade school when your mom would cut your bangs the day before picture day? Lord. You should see some of mine! hehe. Anyhoo, blah blah blah. Got the hedges cut, early this morning. The painters are here with a vengeance, and the other landscapers had the gall to show up! Shoot me now.

Bella was glad to make it home. We left the Nantucket-Riverside booda dome down there. She really does like it, as you can see. Dave and Abby were glad to see us, probably not so happy about seeing Bella as she terrorizes them. Poor Dave seems to be losing weight. He goes out and prowls all night--howls all night if we don't let him out. Don't know what's going on there. Me and my cats. Geesh.

Mom is doing great. Sherrie and the boys took really good care of her in my absence, as I knew they would. She was happy to see me. There's so much going on around the house, I was worried it would mess her up; another reason why I wanted to be home before they started painting. After she thought a man was in her house, I thought it may frighten her seeing all these guys all over the yard and stuff. Not fazing her in the least. I suppose you just never know with dementia. I try so hard to make things perfect for her only to drive myself insane and then she is perfectly fine without my doing anything. It was such a relief finding her so content. Now talk to me tomorrow and it may be a whole other story. Let's hope not. (This is a tin beach pail I set up before leaving Riverside--sniffle.)

I was deeply saddened by the news while away that one of the teenager's school mates which he played football with was shot and killed in Nashville last week. He would have been a senior next year. It saddens me to the core to even fathom the loss of a child. None the less being shot in what the police think was a botched robbery while he was washing his car at a car wash. It breaks my heart to think of his parents and to see the teenager having to attend a funeral of a friend at such a young age. Just rips me apart. Never take a moment with a loved one for granted. It's these hard reminders sometimes that jolt us back into appreciating each precious minute.

Think I'll go wake the boys up with a hug. Well, maybe not. It's still early (for summer time anyway). They'd probably want to kill me if I did! "MOM!"

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Mom's" Room

Even though mom probably will never come back down to Riverside, I still consider this her room. The kid and I found these lovely paintings that fit perfectly above the beds. I love them.

I ordered some bamboo blinds for the French doors in the front of the house, some white blinds for the sidelights by the back door (way too much sun in the afternoon) and am in the midst of figuring out what kind of drapes to put in the master bedroom. All the blinds will be ready by the time we return. After that, a couple of rugs for the master and a couple spots painted, and she will be finished.

Take a look at "my" corner nook. It has the best view in the house, guaranteed. Well, at least, I think so.

We are all ready to go. House cleaned and tidied; I even caulked the sink where the pesky ants were coming in. Little buggers. Sigh. It will be hard leaving in the morning. But, at least all the heavy work is done. Even the car is half loaded. Good stuff.

Transition Day

The kid and I were supposed to head home today. We couldn't find it in our hearts to do so. We have delayed our departure from Riverside by a day. Today, I'm going to straighten up the place and do the normal "leaving Riverside" chores--vacuuming, dusting, making sure there are no food products left out (already lost a good piece of chocolate to a bunch of tiny ants!). That way when we return, it's in good shape to enjoy. I may even leave the beds made this time. Always such a pain when you're tired from a long drive. But, I'm always leery in fear of finding a critter sleeping there when I get back. Eww. Shivers down me spine. So, here I am, able to blog today.

It has become overcast, so it's the perfect weather for just puttering around the place. I took the above picture a little while ago. I love when the river is in still mode, before switching current, and it's just like a mirror. It's so peaceful. Here, the river is just beginning it's movement.

On Monday, we decided to do a little exploring of the area. I had always seen pictures of Rosemary Beach and was just dying to go and take a look at a beach named after moi (ha). I have to do a little post-fact corrections. THIS is the Escambia Bay Bridge that was damaged in Ivan. I'm still learning my way around here. The other bridge (in which I misspoke) is the Mid-Bay Bridge (I think!). Oy. Sorry to any locals who saw my mistake!

We were very happy to get off I-10 and hit the back roads to see some beach! This is the entrance to Seaside or Rosemary or one of those beaches. Bermudaesque, no? Yes!

Check out this modern little abode on the Gulf. Yowza.

Watercolor, Seagrove, Seacrest and Rosemary Beaches are all planned communities. (We're only talking a couple mile stretch here along the Gulf of Mexico.) A little too planned for my liking, but beautiful for those who like that sort of thing. I prefer a little less-planned life, myself. But, they are gorgeous and along with that comes pricey. Ooooof!

We finally made it to Rosemary Beach. It still has a long way to go, lots of construction. It was hotter than Hades but we parked the car and walked through the town "center" and made our way to the beach. This reminded us a little of Europe. Have you ever seen a 12 mph sign? Wonder why not 10? A little quirky for such a "planned" community!

One of the alleys heading to the beach. Very pretty.

Loved this door heading into the courtyard of some one's multi-million dollar pad.

Pretty. Again, Bermuda like.

When the kid and I went to the beach last week, there was only a yellow flag. We began seeing jellyfish and we left.

Thus comes the yellow flag with a purple one too. Yuk.

I admit, this is a beautiful beach. But truly not any more beautiful than where we go down in Perdido Key.

And I love having umbrellas when needed. But, these are charge-per-day (or week). I think if I paid millions of dollars for a bungalow in such a tightly planned community, I would want those umbrellas and lounges thrown in, don't you? Geesh.

Looking back towards the town.

We walked around a little and then decided to find a place for lunch. Jumped back in the car (and that a/c sure did feel good, phew!) and headed back towards Seaside. We should have stopped here but we kept on going.

Adorable. I much preferred Seaside over Rosemary any day. It's just more open and much more to do--and still very pretty. Even more so. Rosemary just didn't do anything for me.

Some beautiful places in Seaside.

As we passed Destin, we had to stop and watch the sunset. The sand here on the Gulf is just amazing. It's squeaky. It's delightful. PS Don't go to Destin unless you're a party animal. Yep, that kind of area!

I love watching the little clams wash up and quickly disappear into the sand as they hide. They are actually hard to capture on film! Poor kid just ran himself ragged trying to capture the hundreds each time they washed up--to no avail. They'd be dug in before he snapped the lens!

A beautiful dune.

Then a wonderful dinner (actually last night) at Felix's. Word up. Call ahead for dinner reservations during the week! Oooof. We had an hour's wait. But no prob, we sat in the pub and had turtle soup. It passed quickly.

I ordered the New Orleans BBQ shrimp. I think they were actual Royal Reds, they were huge! And good.

It's been a wonderful trip.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Bella, The City Cat

Bella doesn't like it much outdoors either. Look at the terror in her eyes! And the straw stuck to her whiskers by way of spider web.

"Please, please let me back in!! There's bugs out here!!

Ok, the door is going to open at any moment now. I hear the doorknob turning. Yes, yes, here it comes.

Now, that's more like it, thank you very much. And I'm so glad the woman took that nasty thing that was hanging off of my face. How embarrassing that would have been if someone saw me. Geesh."

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Pensacola, Gulf Breeze, Florida

(A borrowed map from the Emerald Coast tourist site.)

The kid and I felt like doing a little exploring yesterday afternoon so we took the scenic route along the Gulf and headed towards Pensacola. We've never been anywhere else except their airpport. It was fun. This is looking towards Gulf Breeze and the Escambia Bay Bridge.

We crossed the over bridge (one side of the bridge is on the Escambia Bay, the other on Pensacola Bay--if I had my bearings right.) We ended up in Gulf Breeze and sat and watched the sunset there for a bit.

This is where we were. Pensacola Beach is the little strand below Santa Rosa Sound. Nice. I'm not quite sure what the checkered flag is. Perhaps a restaurant we never found. ha.

Looking back towards Pensacola in Gulf Breeze.

Heading back into Pensacola with views of the old bridge. This bridge was badly damaged during Hurricane Ivan in '94 as shown left. (Why would a semi-truck try to cross this during a hurricane, I wonder?)

By the time the sun went down, we began looking for somewhere to eat--in unknown territory. After several misses trying the use the navigation system, we ended up finding a wonderful restaurant, The Atlas Oyster House right on Pensacola Bay. Just drove right to it. And, it truly was a pleasant surprise having no information on it. You know, it can be hit or miss when you just come upon a place and jump in! But, it was fabulous!

The kid's Caesar salad. What a twist.

We both ordered shrimp--blackened and pecan crusted with mac & cheese (who could resist), grits for me (or course) and dirty rice. It was so different for these parts. The places we normally frequent, food is served on paper plates! hehe. There was so much, I have half waiting for me to devour for lunch. Yum!

For dessert, we ordered the Tiramisu. Again, who could resists? The jolt of espresso gave me enough energy to drive the hour back to Fairhope (in the dark)!

We just love exploring. On Monday, we're heading back that direction and are going to look at the other beaches in Destin, San Destin, Watercolor, Seaside and Rosemary Beaches! You're getting into some fancy schmancy communities up there; but I have always wanted to see them.

Today, we're just chillin'.



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