Friday, December 26, 2008

Letters to My Family

Christmas has passed again although ours is to be held this weekend when everyone is home. We will do the Christmas Eve dinner on Saturday and the Christmas morning thing on Sunday. I was just a bit saddened because I was at work and I was not doing my regular Christmas "thing"... old habits die hard. So Christmas night on my way to the hospital I started thinking about my children and my husband and all the blessings that I do have. I want to share them.

Dear Stan
My heart was more than touched when I arrived home this morning after one of the worst nights I have had at work. I was teary eyed because it was Christmas and I was exhausted. I walked into the house and the tree was lit and the kitchen was cleaned up and the laundry done. You knew how much Christmas means to me and you lit up the house. Made me cry because it touched me that you knew the importance. Thank you for always being there for me. I am glad that you were home this morning. It made my heart smile. I love you.

Dear Josh,
I am watching you grow before my eyes. You are taking control of your life and doing a great job. It's hard for me to let go because that is my nature but know that I love you more each day and I am proud of all that you are doing. I have watched you struggle thru the years and it has awed me that you have taken that struggle and tunneled it into your passion. When you hurt, I hurt and it takes everything for me not to fix things that go wrong but it's your job as you have reminded me and you need to do the fixing. You are creative and intense, the dark and light that make you the wonderful man you are. I am blessed having you for a son. I love you.

Dear Becky,
You amaze me. This year was one filled with anguish and joy, from the death of your friend's father to your marriage. I watched as your emotions were pushed and tossed to see you finally rise above all and take control. That you are blessed with outside beauty is wonderful, but the beauty in your heart is what makes me proud. You do so remind me of Grandma Mercy in that you have her honesty and love of life. I am grateful that you listen to me and love me anyway and that your practical way of looking at things keeps me sane. I wish for you abundant joy and happiness this year because you so deserve that and more. You are my precious angel. I love you

Dear Shane,
I could not have picked a better man for my daughter than you. How wonderful it is that you are a part of our family. I am so grateful that you have a sense of humor and find joy in life. You love my daughter and make her laugh and that is a gift for any mom. I look forward to watching your own family develop and I am so glad to be part of that. I love you.

Okay well that's it. My letters to my family. I love you all and rejoice that each of you brings a piece to the family that is unique and makes us whole.
Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Poem

It was the night before Christmas, I was alone in my house,
My son was in Iowa visiting my ex-spouse,
My daughter snuggled up to her husband so near,
My husband in a camper looking for deer,
It was Demi and I, she's a faithful pooch
As long as there's food and covers to mooch.
My shopping is done, the wrapping can wait
I have a 12 hour shift to honor this date
Our Christmas will be held in just two days
When all arrive from places away.
I hope that for each of you reading this piece,
That your celebrations are awesome so these words I do speak
That you remember the Son who's birthday this is
and be kind to each other and say a prayer for bit,
For those who don't know him, to help find the way
To really honor the Savior who was born on this day.

Merry Christmas 2008
Love, Deb

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Joshua Update and Drive Through Money Making Opportunity

Joshua made the trip. He called me last night and was IRRITATED at me because I made him tense for the trip. He told me that the trip was easy, the highways were clear and nothing like what I had envisioned. He further stated that old beat up cars were zooming around him. What he is not realizing is that those road conditions were an answer to prayer. A lot of prayer.... from a lot of people. Thank you God. So don't get snappy at me..... I just prayed you a great trip.

Last night at work we got hungry and the only thing open at 2am is Burger King. I went to get three meals for the staff. First of all you must understand that they only will take one order at a time if you are paying separately. I have learned my lesson from past trips so I made my first order drove up to pick it up and told her that I was going to be driving around 2 more times. She kindly told me that since no one was behind me she would break the rules and take the new orders at the window. I paid with a credit card for one order and for mine I gave her cash. She handed me my ticket and somehow my change flew out of her hand hit my car and fell to the ground. I had to pull up and away from the window and get out and locate my 63 cents amid the muck on the ground. I hit a bonanza. I found over $1.50 extra that was not mired in dropped milkshake, food and gra-dou(that is nasty stuff that has no identifiable markers). Being in the Christmas Spirit and since she did give me my three orders without me wasting my gas, I gave her the somewhat sticky money as a tip. She was happy and I had an idea. I am going to hit the open-all-night drive thru places and check the place just below the pay window. My problem is how to get the money without being seen. I may have to contract the job out to a child or a short person because I can't squat and walk anymore and God knows I am not going to crawl thru that mess. I may need to start carrying gloves with me. I know!!!! I'll just drop my change myself and then get out and pick up all that loose silver!!!!

Remember despite how great the roads are up north, please pray for the safe return of my son.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Josh In Iowa for Christmas

It's Christmas time again and my favorite time of the year. Joshua is off for his trip to Iowa to visit dad Steve in Decorah. It's snowing. Bad. I am of course the panicky-worrywart-anxious mom. I even wrote Steve about the trip maybe being dangerous when I got a call from my sister, a fellow Iowan telling me the roads were horrible. Steve assured me that while there was snow it was safe with precautions(not his exact words)I was discussing this with my friend and remembered that I never let Joshua go anywhere at Christmas because that was MY HOLIDAY. I informed her that I felt that I had really grown up about the whole issue. She looked at me and said...... cripes he is 31 years old, don't you think he can go where he wants to when he wants to??? Well that took the air out of my self-congratulatory balloon. Yes my baby is 31 and he can go where and when he wants. What I wish is that nauseated worry feeling would abate with both my kids aging. I don't want to be one of those moms that everyone talks about but I think I am. I am the natural worrier. I packed 2 sleeping bags in the car for him just in case. He has water, snacks, his phone, presents for Steve and Peggy and his first niece. I made sure that the insurance cards for the car and his health were in the right place. I prayed over the car, sent a text message with a prayer to him, and I have covered him with angels. I HAVE to let my kids grow up and run their own lives without my interference. I keep thinking that I have and then I worry. A lot. As I recall my mother worried too. Maybe it's a genetic anomaly and then when my two have kids they will worry too. What justice. I don't sleep well when my chickens aren't near the roost but that is why they created benadryl and if that fails, Dalmane or wine, or champagne or whatever. I can only do what is the most important and that is turn them over to God and try to let him handle the situation without my interference. So here it is.... God you take care of my boy and my girl and my new son-in-law in all their daily travels. You bring them home safe and while they are gone make them an example of your love and allow them to help others in your name. AMEN

Friday, December 12, 2008

Snow and My Birthday

Stan took me out for a belated birthday dinner and I made a grand entrance at Blackberry's Restaurant. Blackberry's is located at the casino in Opelousas and is a great place to eat. Thank God that Wednesday is slow and only one other couple was dining because I fell into the restaurant. I tripped and went head first onto the floor. I know the staff was figuring that I was going to sue... believe me if I could have gotten out of there I would have but I couldn't get up off the floor. BWS: Beached Whale Syndrome is the hazard of being overweight. With the help of multiple people I was able to get off the floor, reassure the staff that I wasn't going to sue and go about my birthday dinner.
I had various aches and pains during the night and awoke early. Stan came out to walk Elizabeth and called to me. Sometime during the night snow had fallen and was still coming down. We had about an inch: our entire lawn was covered, the cars were covered, the tree limbs were covered. It was a winter wonderland and I was in awe... for about 30 seconds before it hit me that I was in Louisiana and I really hate being cold. I really lost it's appeal quickly. I slowly moved my aching body inside and sat in my recliner and covered with a blanket. As bad as I cannot stand to be cold my thoughts turned to my childhood and remember that magical moment when I looked outside and saw the first snowfall of the season. It was so white and soft looking and it sparkled. I remember going outside dressed from head to foot in snow gear to keep me warm only to throw myself in the stuff and make an angel. I remember opening my mouth for the first cold taste of clean snow. I remember snow men, snow balls, hot chocolate with marshmallows, ice skating at Westgate Park, the crunch of the snow when I walked and chains for our tires. I remember just how hot my face was when I came in from the cold. Most of all I remember hoping and praying that it would snow for Christmas. By afternoon there wasn't a hint of the snow anywhere to be found except on my camera phone. Do I miss the snow? No. I would like to visit it sometime but don't ever relish living with it for the winter months. My memories are good enough and they keep me warm.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Grandma Memory: Where's my Floor

Gosh it was fun writing about the snoring and while I was driving home this morning I remembered another funny incident with my mom. I was 15 or 16 and we didn't have a lot of money and certainly not enough to redo the ancient flooring in the kitchen. The floor was an old linoleum dated back in the 50's and it was yellowed and cracked in places. In the cracked places a wide planked wooden floor peeked thru. I got the brilliant idea to redo the floor by myself as a surprise to mom. I had it all planned out, after she went to bed I would stay up and remove the old floor, wash the wooden one and throw a spot of wax on it and the next morning she would be thrilled. I mean how hard could it be... the old floor was just lifting up by itself. Mom went to bed and I started in and discovered a problem about 2 feet into the removal. The old linoleum was affixed to the floor with a black tar like substance with the consistency of cement. I had a knife and a wall paper scraper. When I realized the problem I couldn't go back because the old linoleum broke apart as I lifted it up. I continued on hacking and scraping thru the night. My hands were a mess but I had broken piles of linoleum everywhere and managed to get them out of the house. I made very little headway on the black tar like substance and I cannot describe just how awful the kitchen looked, it was already morning and she was up. We had the old kind of coffee pot, a drip type, and I made coffee for her and sat myself at the kitchen table awaiting my fate. She came down stairs and walked into the kitchen, said good morning and went to get her coffee. She poured a cup at the stove and I can still see her beginning to drink when she just stopped and stared straight ahead. She looked down and said Oh my God someone stole my kitchen floor By this time I was weeping and she repeated Debbie someone took my floor Her tone of voice was shocked puzzlement. For that moment she really thought someone had come in and taken the whole floor. When I tell you it was a bizarre moment I kid you not. She finally realized I was crying and asked me what was wrong. Thru the hiccups, runny nose and tears I told her what I had wanted to do and showed her my hands and continued to cry. Man she was unflappable. She just hugged me and told me it was all right that she would fix it. We ended up having to have it sanded off and sure enough under the tar was the floor that I had seen in my imagination. My mom ranked right up there with the best, snoring and all. She appreciated the 'gift' for what it was and never held against me the mess that I had created. I miss her.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Memories: Grandma's Snoring and The Big Pin

Seeing as how this is my blog and I get to write what I want I have decided to occasionally start putting in memories of events that were special to me. So I will begin with Grandma and her snoring. My mom was a world class snorer. She has sleep apnea and would snore and sputter and gasp her way thru the night. She could be heard thru out the house and if you didn't get to sleep first it would keep you up for a time. Now all of us girls took turns in sleeping with her. She had the big bed and it was comforting to get to sleep next to mom... except that she snored. She was nudged, poked, prodded and awakened to stop the constant noise. We could have slept in our own rooms but the noise wasn't that much less. I read one day in a self help column(Dear Abby or Ann Landers) that you should pinch or stick the offender with something sharp. Made sense. I must have been at least 14-15 because I remember being very cocky(hard to visualize, huh) and the night I got to sleep with mom I went armed. My mother, God rest her loving soul, did not cuss. Ever. She would not tolerate anyone using our Lord's name in vain. When the snoring commenced she was on her left side and I took my weapon, a pin, and stuck her in the butt. She leaped out of bed screaming Jesus Christ something just bit me in the ass!!!
I leaped out the other side of the bed and stood there with my hip cocked and my hand on said hip with the pin in my other hand. Mom turned on the light on about the time I said (can you believe I was this stupid?) I did it, I stuck you with a pin to make you quit snoring. She slowly turned and looked at me... her face was purple but she quietly asked What did you say? Like a fool I repeated myself. She was furious... but her voice was quiet and oh so controlled and she informed me that this was her house, her room and her bed and if I didn't like what I heard I could return to my own room. That memory is so vivid but it stops there. I know she didn't beat me and I don't remember if I told her I was sorry and I also don't remember where I slept that night. I was undoubtedly traumatized from hearing her curse and from the overall lack of sleep. Folks, my mom was a saint.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday and the Shopping Frenzy

I have never, ever gone shopping on the day after Thanksgiving. I don't like going to the mall in the first place because of the daily crowds and never could get into the idea of shopping on the biggest sale day of the year. I am normally at work on Thanksgiving so honestly I have never had the opportunity to partake in the shopping event even if I wanted to. Here I was OFF on Thanksgiving and I developed the desire to see what the hoopla was all about. I woke up at 2am... I am a night person thru and thru.. and by 4am I was getting excited at the prospect of hitting the sales. I woke Stan to see if he wanted to go and we were dressed and out the door by 4:30am. Going to the mall we passed Walmart and the lot was full with people still in the drive trying to get in. It looked like sharks in a feeding frenzy. I kept saying to Stan how excited I was to finally take part in this yearly event. He was not nearly as excited. The mall was not busy and we went into Macy's first. My excitement dwindled as I expected to see massive discounts that were not in evidence. I had no plan exactly I just wanted to be hit by the 'buy-me' buzz that accompanies big discounts. We went up to housewares and I felt I HAD to buy something because I did come out after all. I bought myself a Tassimo single cup coffee maker that I had wanted. I saved 10 bucks and I had a tiny zing on the excitement scale but it didn't last. I wandered around but really nothing appealed to me. We went into Sears and there I purchased a toaster, two hand towels, a cookie sheet, and some cooking utensils for non-stick cookware. Apparently my zing-ometer was dead. I found myself bored and wanting to leave as I was waiting to pay for my purchases. The highlight of the shopping trip was standing in the pay line when we struck up a conversation with a gentleman from Canada. He moved to our area when he was recruited by Stullers. We discussed what a great company that was and moved on to the wonderfulness of Lafayette and Louisiana as a whole. To that nice gentleman's wife: you are getting a fabulous mixer and an electric grill. However the absolute best gift of all is that your husband loves you dearly and thinks that the sun rises because of you AND he is not above telling strangers what a wonderful woman you are!!! I got a great ZING out of that!!!! My overall disappointment at the sales was over shadowed by my meeting Mr. 'Canada' and hearing about his wife. I left the mall to go home feeling pretty good about the trip even though the gift buying was a bust(except what I bought for me)
Will I go again next year???..ummm no, probably not, unless I have a great shopping plan or wish to exchange airborn bacteria with the vast mulittudes looking for a bargain.

Thanksgiving 2008

Thanksgiving at the Garrards was a wonderful event. It represented the first 'family' get-together after the wedding and it was a combined effort of Shane, Becky, Benny Frances, Stanley and me.
Benny fried the turkey and for those of you who have never had a fried turkey you just don't know what you are missing. It cooks in one hour and it melts in your mouth. Becky used her new china to set a lovely table and prepared a pumpkin soup. The flavors burst in your mouth according to Benny and he was right. It was fabulous.We started with the soup then filled our plates with casseroles and topped the meal off with Pecan pie prepared by Frances.

As noted in the next three pictures, the men ate and settled back to watch the game.This year has been a wonderful year and there are many things for which I am thankful. My son is doing well in his business. There are a few glitches but I believe that things will work out. My daughter and her love, Shane got married in the 'Wedding of The Year' if I do say so myself. I am thankful for my health, my family, my new son-in-law, 'my' new in-laws Benny and Frances. I am thankful that I have family that I love and admire from Iowa to Ohio to Florida. I am thankful for my job that allows me to get to know and treat a variety of people. I am thankful for my many friendships that have blessed me over and over. I will end this entry with a prayer:
Dear God,
Thank you so much for taking care of those that I love. Thank you for our freedom paid for at a great price by our soldiers. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to take care of others and give me patience and love in dealing with all people. Thank you for your abundant mercy as we struggle in our daily lives. Thank you for my family and for the love that is always there. Thank you for my son and daughter and now my son-in law for in them I am indeed wealthy beyond measure. Thank you for Stan and protect him as he goes about his daily work. Thank you for our food and our shelter. Thank you for allowing me to see glimpses of your love and mercy in the patients that I care for and thank you most for your Son. In Jesus name I pray.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

THE FOG or Maybe I Am Just Too Tired

I went shopping yesterday. I hate to shop because it involves getting dressed on my only real day off, getting in the car, driving somewhere, getting out of the car and walking into a store. Adding to the above you have to find a place to park. I make it a mission(and give myself points) to get the closest spot available even if I have to drive round and round. God forbid I burn 2 extra calories. I had to find a wedding present. I found a pedipaws, and a Tassimo Coffee maker( I didn't buy that... I just wanted to)I found snacks for the dancing school and nearly checked out before I realized that I hadn't bought the present. I left my purchases at the counter and found the present had it gift wrapped in a grey plastic bag(a Bed, Bath, and Beyond deluxe gift wrap) and I went to get into my car. I hit the remote for my trunk and nothing happened. I did it again..... nothing. Tried the door locks with the remote and again nothing. I was getting pretty steamed and nearly kicked the damn thing. I finally hit the alarm button and some damn fool car behind me started alarming. It nearly scared the poop out of me. I turned around to give the eye to the ninny in back of me blowing the horn. Guess what I found! My car with the trunk open and the alarm on and the lights flashing. I turned back to the first car... it wasn't the same make as my car or even the same color.... It just didn't register when I was standing there. I am very very glad I didn't haul off and kick it. No I do NOT need a keeper, I just think I need more sleep.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Comfort Food

I was thinking about comfort foods tonight and it brought back 'mom' memories. Comfort food is the food you ingest that gives you feelings of well being. My earliest comfort food was Milk Toast. I can just hear the gagging from my 2 faithful readers but you don't know what you are missing. When we were sick(and not retching) mom would take 2 pieces of bread and really toast them but not burned. Then she would slather on the butter and put it into a bowl and cover it with hot milk. Salt and pepper were added last and voila... milk toast. YUM. I can still taste it. Real homemade mashed potatoes with butter also figured up in the top ten of my comfort foods. Mom also used to make fudge and I still can't find fudge made the way mom did. The fudge today is really creamy and mom's always had a grainy taste and it was a little hard. It probably wasn't very good fudge but we grew up on it and it is the best. I recall that my sister Barb said that she made a batch of mom's fudge... I need that recipe!! My other favorite comfort food is green Christmas tree cookies with white icing. Both cookie and icing are heavy on the butter. Again my sister Barb makes those and even tho I have the recipe they just aren't as good as when she makes them. Patti's contribution to the comfort food category is Czechoslovakian cookies. ...flour, butter, pecans, sugar and jam. They are so good it makes you humuuum. I made the severe mistake of making those for people at work and I have orders every year for a batch at Christmas time. I really don't make them any other time because they barely make it out of the pan. Down here in Lou-ee-z-anna it seems that comfort food starts with rice and then covered in gravy. It's pretty good. I am really curious about what makes up your comfort food. If you are reading this please put a comment in the comment section and share what it is that your mom gave to you when you were in need of comfort.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Doris Rollins

This has been a week of highs and lows at work. I like the ER because usually the chance of getting attached to a patient is pretty slim. This is pretty much true for all the big ERs but not ours. We have people who use us sometimes daily and we get to know them, their families, their diseases and they get to know us on all our good and bad days.
Years ago now I met Miss Doris. She was a delightful 70's plus year old woman who had never married but 'adopted' her son Wayne Guidry and his lovely wife Cindy. Doris smashed right thru those barriers that I normally keep up... right into my and Jill's heart. She had her Masters in social work and was in charge of Childrens Services for the state. She worked with handicapped children and wrote a handbook used in neonatal intensive care units. She was a musician and played for her Baptist Church down the road from the hospital. Cindy told me tonight that she had composed a Christian song that I have yet to hear. She is going to also get me a CD of her last years playing which I will treasure. Doris would periodically come in when her lungs would fill up with fluid and she couldn't breathe. Dr. N., Jill and I had a routine with her and over the years we got so fast at it that her condition could be corrected in a few hours. We, Jill and I, were her nurses. She loved us and we loved her. Both Jill and I lost our mothers and I know now that Doris had a seat in the part of our hearts that missed our own moms. During a hospital stay Jill and I got her yellow flowers..... you see, yellow was her very favorite....and you would have sworn we had brought her diamonds. She went to Joshua's June performance with Cindy. Joshua dedicated his solo to her. She was thrilled and he was delighted to meet her. At each visit she would ask about my kids and my answer always interested her and she would remember.
During some really bad episodes of her heart failure her church would gather in the ER and pray. She had the will of a tiger and would pull thru every time. She came in for the final time last Thursday morning and it was bad. She wasn't recovering like she normally did. Jill and I remained by her side and let her know how much she was loved. She was eventually transferred to a larger hospital and seemed to be doing better. Doris was a 'no code' and did not want heroics done to keep her alive. She died Friday with her son Wayne by her side. God was so good to Doris because even though childless she was blessed with Wayne and Cindy, who dearly loved her. God was good to Jill and I because we had Doris for the past few years and were allowed to minister to her. She was our friend and like those left behind we will miss her. Doris you blessed me so very much with your faith and your courage. I know where you are and I am so happy that you no longer struggle with the frailty of your body. You believed, you lived your life with that belief and you have been rewarded. I just know that you are walking in a field ..... and it's full of yellow flowers.


I have permission to tell this story from one of my patients and I give it to you with great blessings. Dorothy has been a patient for about 8 years. I became acquainted with her after she lost her young daughter Brandy in a childbirth on a Christmas Eve. Brandy left behind a child and her devastated mom. I can't imagine a worse heartbreak or nightmare for any mother but Dorothy despite our encouragement could not let Brandy go and mourned her daily to the detriment of her own health. She frequently came in for increasing abdominal pain and vomiting. She lost weight and the pain never seemed far away. We were treating her with narcotics and other medication so that she could go from day to day. Every time she came in the pain was etched on her face from her abdominal area and from her personal loss. She saw many specialists and never really had a diagnosis. Our hearts would break when we would ask her how she was really doing....not wanting to mention her daughter's name. Dorothy knew what we were asking and the tears would flow. Tonight she brought in a member of her family suffering from cancer and she looked wonderful. It dawned on us that we hadn't seen her in a while. She had gained weight and brought out of her pocket a piece of paper that contained the diagnosis of the problem that had plagued her for years. She had to have a mesenteric- aortic bypass. Her mesenteric artery was blocked and she was slowly starving to death. (I will bypass the reasons why this happens... it just does) They were successful in the surgery but during that time she went into a cardiac arrest(she died) and they were obviously able to bring her back. I asked her if she had seen anything and she answered "oh, yes. I saw a beautiful area with pink and white and soft blue was all bright. There were three people. Brandy was in the middle. She was moving her hands outward like 'go back.' She was beautiful." Dorothy awoke in the ICU where she stayed for 2 months and has been home now for months. She is pain free and has a peaceful look about her face. She was able to talk about Brandy without crying. " I can let her go now" I am a witness to her difference to those who scoff. Do I believe her? Oh yes. From her own brief death she awoke with the surety that Brandy is in a beautiful place and that she will see her again. Blessing to you Dorothy and to Brandy's child and to all your family. Thank you for allowing me to share.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Water is Cheap.. Take a Bath and Put on Clean Undies

I wonder sometimes if people really don't have any idea that they are dirty. In an emergency I have learned that people can show up in the ER in a variety of clothing and covered in blood and dirt. Perfectly acceptable and no one looks askance at them. A lot of ER's are now being used as a clinic and we see a high number of non-emergency cases that present to the ER in ridiculous states of dress and hygiene. The older I get the less I hesitate to tell someone that their hygiene sucks.

Oral Hygiene: Brush your teeth....sometimes. When you have green mossy plaque attached to your front teeth thick enough to plant flowers and you smile it is about all I can do not to smack you over the head with a tooth brush. THERE IS NO EXCUSE. Water is cheap and if you can't afford toothpaste try baking powder and salt. Cavities can make you sick. When you come to my ER I will address the issue with you regardless of the reason that you came.

Body Dirt: If you come to the ER (unless it is a true emergency) and you are dirty I will mention to you that you should bathe...sometimes. Especially if you are here for boils, impetigo, lice, crabs, ring worm and poison ivy. Clean skin is important. Water is cheap. I have had to bathe children at times before I could treat them for minor ailments. I have had people tell me that they don't need to bathe but every two or three days. Yes. You. Do. You smell. You have rings of dirt around your neck and that is so not attractive. You are not going to catch cold or get pneumonia if you bathe even when you don't feel good.

Attire: If you come for a non- emergency... like something you have had for weeks...look at your clothes. If you and your kids are filthy you are going to get sick. Water is cheap. We have a lot of water in Louisiana. If your water got turned off, take your clothes to the bayou and beat them on a rock. I promise you that they can't be worse off than they are now. There is no shame in being poor but there is a heap of shame for being willingly dirty. Mama always told me to wear clean underwear if I was going out. You know, just in case you got into an accident and someone other than family had to divest you of your drawers. I had a patient come stating she was pregnant and bleeding. I asked to see her pad(huge yuck factor but it is a legitimate question) and guess what, she wasn't wearing one. But don't be too upset her panties were just fine.... because she wasn't wearing them either. Just her nasty jeans and a wad of toilet paper. Apparently undies make her feel all bound up(her words). I actually couldn't speak for a moment. If you come in for say, a non-emergent recheck on your gunshot wound from a week ago, AND you are a 20 year old man, it is not cute to be in dirty moose slippers and your girlfriends pink frilly robe and boxers. You. Look. Stupid. Don't get upset if I laugh at you.

Body Odors: Some people cannot help certain body odors and I understand that having battled stinky feet for over a year(nylon allergy... alas a story for another day) I had a patient once who presented to the ER for bad breath... whoooo boy was it bad. She knew it and she couldn't help it. She brushed about 10 times a day, gargled and was going nuts. Turned out to be a stomach problem. I have had wives take me aside and ask me to include in the discharge orders that their husbands have to bathe more than once every few days. It takes some creative thinking to tie bathing into instructions for a welder's flash burn of the eye. You know what, you married him and he is yours to raise..... tell him to bathe or you won't play the mattress mambo with him. Ladies all I am going to say is that if during your routine vaginal exam your nurse and doctor have tears running down their faces it's not because your Miss Puss is the most beautiful one they have ever seen. One word... douche

Feet: Last but not least is feet. When you come to the ER please, please, please PLEASE..change the socks that you have had on non-stop for the past year and wash your feet. If your feet are clean and they stink than you probably have some kind of medical problem. When we have to peel those dirty, 'stanky' socks off your feet and you have toe nails that are curling at the top and mounds of toe jam, do not be offended when we scrub and soak your feet AND spray them with Lysol.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Well It is Finally OVER

We have a new president. It is in fact history making in that he is partially African-American. He was not my choice but NOT because of his color. I wish him well. His views are not things that I can espouse. I still strongly feel that in spreading the wealth..again my wealth, pitiful as it an initiative killer and nothing will change. I have watched people who are being given things by the government and they want and EXPECT more. I know that there are exceptions to this statement but the feeling and attitude is there and I see it every day.

We have many friends of color who are experiencing problems of a racial bent since the election. So to you sore losers in Lafayette, GROW UP. My bet is that the ones that are name calling and threatening others did not even vote. You don't like the new President??? Too bad, get involved in the political environment. I believe(I have to)that we can make a difference. Obama allegedly works for us. I have to believe that we are strong enough to make a difference. And if we can't make a difference then we have 4 years to get behind a candidate and understand what is happening in our country and our world.
The Bible says that we need to always favor Israel. I have never forgotten that and it is foremost in my mind. So Mr. President-elect, I am one, but I am watching.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Making Selfishness a Virture?

You sir are a pompous ass. You accuse me of selfishness because I want to hang on to my money WHICH you implied wouldn't be touched but now the amount that qualifies the standard of middle class has been lowered to 120,000.00 a year. You either are a liar or you do not have a handle on the people campaigning for you including your Vice Presidential selection and your friend Bill Richardson. I want to hang on to the money that I EARNED by working hard all my life. I am accused of being selfish because I don't want to give more money to people who DO NOT WORK. And before you or anyone else goes there..... I am not a racist either because these lazy, do nothing individuals cross all racial lines. I am hugely pissed off at lazy white people just like I am lazy black people, lazy Latinos, LAZY PEOPLE OF ANY COLOR!!!!I have a small cross section of people that I see coming thru my working environment every day. (please refer to May 31, 2008 blog ER Pet Peeves #2-7 - We Are Not Stupid) You want to give MY MONEY to the poor disadvantaged people to help equal out the playing field. You need to work here for about 2 weeks and then tell me with a straight face that giving MORE money is going to make these particular individuals suddenly get the urge to educate themselves, stop having repeated illegitimate children that are largely uncared for, find a job and be productive members of society. That is just like pouring money down the drain... the problem is it is my money and NOT YOURS. What might work is to tell these particular individuals that if you don't go to school,take a job(any job) and work, that their benefits will dry up like dirt and blow away. I can just hear comments.... but I have a back injury and I have been disabled since (pick an age between 20 - 50) I can' work!!!! But I can play, dance, go to the clubs, run my car all over town, ride my dirt bike all over my camp...etc,etc,etc. Well my answer to that is find them a job that involves sitting down.... like answering a phone, filing,or typing to name a few.
When my dog doesn't eat the food placed in front of him then it will stay there till he does. When my dog gets hungry enough he will eat. When people realize that the government is not their personal sugar daddy and they get hungry enough maybe they will look deeply in themselves and find the initiative to better their own lives. You sir are going to continue to remove any possibilities of finding that initiative with your increased give away programs USING MY MONEY. I love change, it opens all possibilites for the future but the change you offer chills my blood. I can only hope that the American People wake up and soon.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My Mama Always said.......(another political opinion)

My mom(God rest her soul) always told me that you are known by the company that you keep. I could bore you and give you the multiple personal examples that I myself know (verifying the truth in that adage) but I will save myself the embarrassment and just let you know that my mama was right. Another variation of that is 'you lay down with dogs and get up with fleas. And no matter how far you venture from the dog that infected you, you still got fleas, especially if you visit their dog house or run in the same park. If anyone has any trouble understanding this please comment back. Truly because it will provide me endless hours of entertainment!

Sometimes you don't need a PhD to figure out the best course of action you need a good dose of common sense.... and a wise mama

Tax Rebate Rant

The election has been a major topic of discussion in our home for weeks. Regardless of what anyone says, having watched ALL stations I still find the the FAIREST coverage presenting both sides, hands down, is Fox. But my preference of TV stations is not what I am ranting about today.
One of the candidates is going to give a LARGE number of workers a rebate... you know the Robin Hood Method..take from the rich and give to the poor. Sounds good except a vast number of people who will get this benefit don't pay taxes. This same vast number of persons DO however get the benefits of what the taxes pay for and that is schools, roads, and the basic tax paid infrastructure of the state. So if I understand this correctly a vast number of people(at least in our state)who work but do not pay taxes because of their income not only get to use all the things that we taxpayers pay for BUT we are now going to give them a check too. Wow, that seems so, so so....... democratic.
I think that we all need to be taxed at the same rate.... 5%- 10% on everything.... nobody gets a break, everyone rich or poor pays the same percentage. No deductions just an across the board tax. The people who don't work(but can and should) but get benefits from the state should be allowed the opportunity to share in the tax experience and they too can have their welfare, WIC,home subsidies, and food stamps taxed at the same rate as us working folks... after all it is income, like a paycheck. That way the rich folk pay more because they are , well... richer but the poor folk pay the same percentage... isn't that fair??? Have a nice day.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Other People's Wedding Food

We were sitting in the ER and it was quiet when the mother-in-law of one of our nurses called and said she had access to left over wedding food. Now to most people eating food left over from another wedding... of someone you don't know.. might be distasteful. Well those people who would turn their nose up at that are not ER nurses and ER doctors. The story is that the wedding reception was held at a local party place and the bride and family just walked out and said to throw the food away. They didn't even take the top of the cake. I personally don't think this wedding is going to last what with the throwing away of the cake top BUT hey I just LOVE wedding cake. YUMMMMMM. Our nurse's mom-in-law worked at said place and told us to come on down and get us some vittles. Mel brought back some decent food. Mind you it in no way was the quality of the food that we had but I was focused on the cake anyway. The cake was yum, it wasn't even in the ballpark of Becky's cake. Understanding that there is no such thing as actual bad wedding cake, on a scale of 1-10 with our cake at a 10 this was a 1.125. But hey, we were hungry and this was free food. Free food is the best kind unless it has been sitting out for several hours. So far none of us feels sick. We found out that Mel left some fried chicken because she didn't have room to carry it out. We sent Mel BACK to the reception hall with a big bowl and she returned with fried chicken and a different kind of cake. Aren't small towns great. It never occurred to us to hesitate to eat stranger's food. Can you imagine a friend calling you from somewhere in Toledo or Cincinnati saying, hey come on over here and get some free food, it's left over wedding food from people we don't know. Oh well, thanks to someone the whole hospital ate tonight and we didn't have to pay for it.... that's so ummmm democratic!!!!
Burrrrrp, have a nice day.

Sunday, October 19, 2008


You brighten my life each and every day. You are my proof that there is hope for the future. You shine with beauty inside and out and are a steadfast friend to those who know you. I am humbled because you know my failings and still love me. You make me laugh with your sense of humor. Each day before I sleep I thank God for you, my precious daughter.
Happy Birthday,
Love Mom

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Socialism? Get outta here

We were discussing at work the current election and candidates.... and of course Joe the Plumber. Well I don't know or really care about Joe personally but I do know about Debbie the Nurse and what I am hearing out of current politicians mouths smacks of socialism. Wikipedia says that "Socialists mainly share the belief that capitalism unfairly concentrates power and wealth among a small segment of society that controls capital, and creates an unequal society. All socialists advocate the creation of an egalitarian society, in which wealth and power are distributed more evenly."
That is rather scary to me. I someday plan on being really really rich. I am just not sure how I will go about it.... but that is my plan. Now after I get really really rich I will set out to help other people because that would be the absolute biggest high I could be on. I wouldn't hoard it or sit in my vault counting my dollars. Nope, I plan on giving a lot away helping other people along with having a bit of fun myself with the daily massages and on call beautician.... and the occasional bauble for my wrist. When I get all my money, I don't want some jackass in Washington telling me that because I worked hard(or won the lottery) that I need to give more to those who don't work as hard as I do. For the past 25 years I have held at least 2 jobs or one job that I worked a lot of overtime . Why???? Because I take care of my own. I have not waited for someone else to step in and give me money. Now in the past when I have had hard times my family stepped in and helped but THAT'S WHAT FAMILIES DO. If the rolls were reversed I would jump in to help someone else. I want the freedom to do that... I don't want to be told I HAVE to do it.
I am apparently in the financial zone where I will be left alone tax wise because I am not rich(yet) The powers that be are going to go after those folks a lot richer than me. You know what, whether they earned it or inherited it, the money is theirs and it should stay theirs. You want money.... go to school, take active part in your children's education, learn about discipline and take a look around you at the kids ruined by lack of it. Don't expect for me to take care of you or your kids, I am already doing too much. I am amazed the number of couples that come into the ER that have never married but have several kids.... so that they can get medicaid. They don't want to have to pay for medical insurance.....BUT they have all the recreational toys that you could want, the 'camp', and a new car every year and believe me this is not the exception. I don't want Bill Gates to have to give even more money to the 'downtrodden' (D.T)I want him to be my example and an example to young kids that if you try hard, study, apply yourself that you too can gain the financial rewards.
I got some bad news Washington... the majority of the D.T around here just want more handouts. I heard an editorial the other day.... we have created a generation of people who feel that they are entitled. The give-it-to-me society. You want some of my money then get off your butts and start to work, learn to speak English(and I am not just talking about our illegal alien brothers and sisters)improve yourself with education and most importantly take responsibility for yourself. I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU.
It's sad that most are now focused on what Joe has or has not done in his life..... listen up and understand...... the important thing about that whole exchange was the answer to the question that Joe asked. The answer was that the wealth needs to be spread around and I am here to give my opinion that, no it doesn't. You work.... you earn... its simple.
Okay, I am done for the day.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Lapp/Gagney Party

I don't fly. Rather I don't fly well or often if can help it. I am of the school that if God wanted me to fly he would have given me wings. At any rate I decided to 'man up' and fly to West Palm Beach to my friend Jojo's house for a party. Her baby, Alexis(aka Bobo) was being feted at a baby shower by her sisters. Jojo and I decided that I would come in costume to fool her two other daughters, Tonya and Aggie. I purchased stretch pants 2 sizes too small, a pink top equally too small, a long brown wig, a hideous pink striped scarf that I used as a belt. Horrible plastic jewelry and big cheap sunglasses. I wore orange, pink and white wedgie heels to walk in. I also found a great stuffed pillow catfish and carried it with me as a gift from Stanley to the baby. I traveled in my scrubs and changed into my outfit when I got to Florida. In the bathroom as I was putting on my wig one woman asked me if I was hiding or running.... I was stunned.. I said you can't be serious,dressed like this carrying a 4 foot stuffed catfish. As I went out into the lobby area I saw a man who looked like Perry, Jojo's husband and he was laughing. Let me preface this huge mistake of identity on my part by telling you I had on my contacts and cheap sunglasses that distorted my vision somewhat. I walked over to the laughing 'Perry" waved my hand down my body stating 'you want som'a dis big boy' then when I got no immediate response(which should have been a clue) I said 'or do you want me to bite your wife on the ass'? Now before you judge me about the statements I will say that you have to know Perry and that both of those comments were not out of line. The man looks over to the older woman next to him and says I don't know, let me ask her. I was beyond horrified. I pulled my sunglasses off explained I really couldn't see well and that I thought he was someone else as I was backing away... before I could get arrested for solicitation. Needless to say I did surprise Tonya and Aggie.

Above is a picture of Bobo, me, Aggie, Jojo, and Tonya.. oh and Calvin the catfish.Jojo arranging a mound of wonderful baby gifts.
Perry, the host with the most and his mom Muriel
The expectant parents.
The party was great fun with fabulous food cooked by the baby daddy mama Susie( or the paternal grandmother to be). They had an assortment of games but the best was the name tags. The girls made little diaper name tags with names associated with childbirth and conception on each 'diaper'. Names like vagina, rectal tear, meconium, mucous plug, penis, sperm, ova, breast, bloody show ... you get the drift. During the shower you had to address each person by their new name. If you used their real name you had to drop money in a basket to be collected at the end of the shower and given for the baby. Oh and we drank out of baby bottles which great gramma's Muriel and Rose felt was the best idea. You don't spill on yourself... personally I find it great for champagne.

All in all it was a great weekend, with wonderful food, great friends, and all for a happy occasion. Jojo and Perry have made their home a place where all feel welcome and part of the family. I was nostalgic as I looked at Bobo with her baby belly remembering, that I held her as a baby. I had a neon sign flashing in my head that said you are getting old. Getting old isn't so bad especially surrounded by family and friends like family. Jojo you are blessed in your children and their mates. I echo Muriel's statement to me when she said that you and Perry were made for each other. I am happy that my friend of nearly 30 years after kissing a few frogs, finally found her prince and soul mate and that he is willing to open his arms and home to your assortment of friends.... however odd!!!! I love you both.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Last Wedding Installment(I promise) The Wedding Academy Awards

Every great production deserves awards, so I have started the Wedding Academy Awards. Unfortunately I do not have pictures for all the winners because as stated earlier my camera broke and I have been dependent on others for pictures.

Award for the Best Bride and Groom of 2008: (duh...) Rebekah and Shane Garrard

Best Caterer for a evening soiree held at the Hilton Hotel in Lafayette: TWISSTED SISTERS of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Pictured above are two of the best twisted sisters you could want!!!

Best Makeup Artist in a stressful situation... the fabulous Lauren Thomas
Best Entertainment Supplied by a Duo: Brian Wesson and Rick Green(voted unanimously by all who attended... also we are going thru an adoption process so that they HAVE to come to all family reunions)
Best Looking Trio from the bride's father's side of the family: Thelma, Elaine, and Lisa

Best Sister In Law 2008: Jessica Garrard
Most Gorgeous Cousins on the Brides side of the family :Trevor, Josh, Mindy. Not pictured but included in the award are Carrie, Ben, Jeff, Kyle,Rosemary, Lance, Gavin,Lisa, Mark, Robbon, Jenny, Brandon, Chris, Jen and Jon.

Award for the Greatest Aunts and Uncles as Duos: Barbara and Bob, Patti and Jack, Elaine and Ruben

Award for the Greatest Adopted Aunts: JoJo, Tante Jill, Ruthie and missing (due to Hurricane Ike) Kay McGuire

Award for the Best In-Laws: Frances and Benny Garrard AND Debbie and Stan Higginbotham(yea!!!! I do so love to win)

Award for the Best Dancing by a Father-In-Law: Benny Garrard(sorry Stan)

Award for the Best Support: My Spanx

Award for Best Hair Stylists Lori Lemelle and Christy Stelly

Award for Best Flowers and Decorations: Ted Viator and Staff from The Gardenaire

Award for the Best Food: Chef Brian, owner of Imonelli's

Award for the BEST WEDDING CAKE EVER: The Sweet Shoppe

Award for the Best Wedding Invitations: By Invitation Only

Special Award for the Best Supporting Cast: All the bridesmaids and groomsmen

Special Award for the Best Guests: All those wonderful people who made the day so very special

Final Award for the Best Host and Hostess with the mostest Yea!!!!!!!ME and Stanley

We had a blast, and enjoyed everyone that came. Thanks for being you!!!!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Wedding Installment #5 - The Reception

The wedding was over and we all filed back to the limos... I realized that I would have 'squat-walk' more towards the front of that long limo so I opted to sit up with the driver. He told me I looked very 'lovely' probably hoping for a big tip. I was very comfortable except for my feet which were swelling at an alarming rate. I had a thought that it might have to do with my Spanx. My Florida BFF had the foresight to bring me my nasty black flip flops which I put on without a second thought.
Walking into The Crown Room I didn't know what to expect. I had the best of the best decorator Ted Viator of the Gardenaire and the owner of the party room Mark Melancon who did the tables... but I still was in for a huge surprise. It was beautiful, actually it was better than beautiful. I couldn't have imagined how lovely it was. The main hallway was decorated with potted trees and pictures of the kids as they were growing up. At the end of the hallway was a huge urn with cascades of live flowers and under that was the kid's engagement picture and the guest book. When I walked into the main party room it was breathtaking. Surrounding the room were several huge urns like in the front with similar cascading flowers. The dance floor was black and white checkerboard. Above the floor was a chandelier with flowers and gauzy material draping to the four corners. The table settings were lovely in their simplicity. Ted made the room a showplace all for my daughter and her husband. We had the wedding catered by Imonellis and the food never stopped. Brian the owner of Imonellis was there to supervise and we had a wide selection of food that was awesome. There were different food stations situated around the room. We had everything from beef to pork, seafood to pasta, fruit, shrimp, vegetables and a grit station. Grits are the southern potatoes to you people up north. These were served in martini glasses with your choice of shrimp sauce or a beef sauce. YUMMMM. We had two bars and a great DJ. After the initial bride and groom dance Becky danced with her daddy and of course he cried, bless his heart which made me cry.

Down here there is a tradition that if the younger sibling in the family gets married first the older sib has to dance with a mop if he is male or a broom for the female. I had asked my Florida BFF Jojo to make a face on a mop for me. What she brought was a fully decorated head with eyes and lips with a mop head for hair. The Mop had a hat, tu-tu, arms and shoes at the end of the stick. It even had little boobies. It was the cutest thing I have seen in a long time. Joshua was called out on the dance floor and given the mop by Becky to dance with. It was really funny.

Another tradition is the money dance in which the bride and the groom dance with others who pin money on them for the honor of dancing. I really felt that I should have gone out and let them pin money on me except that I can't dance..... maybe give me money not to dance.

I have been looking forward to wedding cake all year long. Wedding cake is better than birthday cake. My sister Barbara made me promise that I would have a butter cream icing and not that Crisco stuff or marshmallow stuff. The cake was yumm. I have it on good authority that if you have feet the size of bread loaves that wedding cake does not count against the total wedding food caloric intake. Understanding that, I had two pieces. Two large pieces with icing. The groom's cake was a carrot cake bottom with Humvee shaped cake on the top with Yoda driving. Yes, Shane loves Star Wars.
It was a grand affair. I loved the whole thing. I wish that my feet had not exploded into king size because I had just awesome shoes for the wedding. But the best thing is I got a great new son-in-law who loves my daughter and she him. And I got wedding cake.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Wedding Installment #4 - The Event - September 13, 2008

I am sure that you are wondering why I am drawing the festivities out in several blogs.... I don't know. Now moving on to the actual event. Shane had a large limo pick up all the bridesmaids, Stan and I, and of course the Bride at the hotel. We had two photographers, one with us and one following the groomsmen and groom. They took pictures of everything and I am sure of my big butt trying to get into a limo. You have to kind of squat-walk down the aisle of this stretch limo to get to the front. I thank heavens was seated in the back near the door. I just sort of fell into my seat and bounced a little because of my Spanx. The arrival at the church was lovely, no rain and a nice breeze. The prayers were answered. The bridal party was ushered into a waiting room prior to the ceremony and people would come into see the girls and to see Becky. They were a vision. Becky was magical looking. I don't know why I stuck a picture of Becky in my purse that was taken when she was three. Lord knows it was one of the dumbest things I have done because every time I opened my purse I would tear up. Adding to that, I just had to show the picture to everyone. My son Joshua looking handsome in his tux escorted me down the aisle to the wrong seat. We were sitting one row behind where we were supposed to be. Thelma didn't want to move and my daughter's future in-laws were motioning us forward so I just got up and went forward. The closer the better. Becky's concern was that people would be staring at her. She expressed this more than once and I reassured her that when she and her daddy started down the aisle that all eyes would be on her daddy because he would be crying. It really touched me to see Stan. This has to be the most special moment in most dad's lives next to watching the birth. Giving their baby girl away. Stan, bless his heart cried all the way down the aisle. The ceremony was lovely, Becky is not Catholic so they didn't have a mass but the priest did deliver a lovely message. I expected to feel differently but inside I was still the mom and she is still my baby even though she is going by a different last name.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Wedding Installment #3 - Morning of the Big Day 9/13/2008

NOTE: When I can get a disk with some pictures on it I will post in this blog so please check back on occasion.

I got up early and with my sister Barbara, my mom-in-law Thelma went to Salon Indulgence owned by my friend Christy Stelly. We got our big do's (I do so love the Big Texas Hair look)and headed back to the hotel to dress. Stan managed to get me into my Spanx with little problem and a few snickers. I put on my dress and felt that I looked pretty good. Now in the pictures that I have seen since I feel like I look like a brown stuffed sausage.... but my friends all said I looked lovely. That is what friends are for!! I shoved my bea-u-tee ful shoes on my swollen tankles and left for the brides room. Only a mom knows the feeling of the first sight of your daughter standing in her wedding dress. I was struck by how fast time as flown. It was just yesterday that a 10lb 9oz girl entered my world and my heart. It was just yesterday that we did 'eyelash' kisses and she crept into my bed dressed in her daddy's tee shirt(her favorite sleeping attire). It was just yesterday that she narrowed her eyes at me and told me "I do it" when I tried to pick out her clothes. It was just yesterday that Stan had to wash her mouth out with soap for saying 'som-a-bitch' to the neighbor at the age of three. It was just a minute ago that she met Shane and now she was preparing to enter into a pledge that will last a lifetime. Somehow she grew up in a blink of an eye. I thought I was ready.

Wedding Installment #2 - September 12 at 7pm. Party #2 in the Suite

Like I said earlier, the whole weekend was based around food..... what we ate previously, what we were currently eating and what we would eat in the next few hours. After the successful Bridesmaids and others luncheon we had the evening get together for all the guests at the hotel who were invited to the wedding. I think we had a good time. I was pretty much in a haze plus I had a swelling problem. I have been trying to think of a word to use.... if you have big ankles that are just calf extensions then we call the cankles. If your big ole ankles extend to your toes..... tankles???? Help me out here!!! At any rate I had HUGE feet probably from wine the night before at the rehearsal dinner plus a small glass of wine at the evening party. Oh I forgot my friend Ruthie made the must fabulous Sangria for the luncheon. I had a few glasses.... but in fairness the swelling started on Tuesday pre-wedding and just got worse. Thursday morning pre-parties my very thin Florida BFF tells me she thinks she is a little swollen so I give her a Lasix(we are both intelligent nurses just in case you are wondering) and I take 2 more lasix because I can't bend my toes. We set out to pick up the bridal pictures and drop them off at the florist. It dawned on us that we might have overdone it and dropped our blood pressure because she couldn't keep her eyes open and I was slightly tunnel visioned and dizzy when I stood up. Ah well, it still didn't help me as I continued to swell. Stan and I had the evening party catered by Twissted Sisters. They did a marvelous job and I would highly recomend them to anyone, anytime. I didn't have to do a thing, I mostly sat around with my feet up and just looked at all the wonderful people who blessed my daughter by coming to celebrate her wedding. I was surrounded by my sisters and their families and friends (like sisters) who have been so important to my daughters life, my Florida in-laws and their families.... life just doesn't get any better except that tomorrow we are eating WEDDING CAKE.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Wedding Installment #1 - September 12, 2008 Bridesmaid and Others Luncheon...and me with a broken camera

Well the prayers worked. The wedding was not blown away by Ike. My FBFF Jojo came in on Tuesday morning for which I am still thankful for and my mother-in-law came in that night. At the last minute our bridesmaid luncheon had to be moved to the hotel due to family illness with the hostess. I was still doing the small stuff that needed to get done and my sisters and Jojo took that duty over. The decorations and food were OUTSTANDING. We hosted all the female wedding guests that were in the hotel, and the bridesmaids. It was a good time and it would not have been nearly so good if not for my family and friends. I spent a goodly time in tears for various reasons. I was happy, I was tired, I was happy and know the most obvious reasons for tears. Ike prevented my niece Jennie and husband, Brandon from coming so I cried about that(along with her crying as well) She was greatly missed. I seemed that we moved from one eating event to another and worst of all, I had no camera with which to record all the events. My camera stopped functioning the wedding week. The pictures in this blog are thanks to my niece Carrie. The above two pics are of my sisters Patti and Barbara and the bottom one is of Ruth and Jojo. Becky gave out beautiful robes with embroidered initials for each of the bridesmaids. In the picture below is Jessica Gerrard(Shane's sister) Megan Arceneaux(H.S. Friend and European travel buddy), Becky, Leigh Billeaud(maid-of-honor and friend since 3rd grade), and April Manuel(H.S. friend) Leah her other bridesmaid was ill and could not make the luncheon. Carol Adamson and sister Frances Garrard(Becky's mom-in-law) were in attendance as wellAnd last but not least the proud mama and her baby girl

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Wedding 6 Days and Counting.... Yikes....Ike

Okay I believe in the power of prayer. Those of you who agree please start lifting Lafayette and the surrounding areas up in prayer. Ike is breathing down our neck and the wedding is still on. I will admit to being very very nervous and upset with all the stomach and bowel things that go with that. I just want to have the best time and watch my lovely daughter and her equally lovely fiance get married, eat great food, a lot of cake and drink about 30 martinis.... which if the wedding goes off without a hitch I will deserve( just plant me in a corner somewhere). Pray for our airplane travelers that they are not held up anywhere and that all will be well.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Tuesday September 2, 2008 D.A.G.(you got it.... day after Gustav)

Since my last entry things have calmed down. We got hit but not nearly as bad as it could be. We stared a twenty -four hour shift Monday morning to Tuesday am to keep the ER staffed thru the storm. All was well here, we had a small backup generator that kept the ER going and someone who is the smartest person ever, rigged up a portable air conditioner in the ER. My only problem was sleeping. I went to bed Monday morning and the day people decided that our hall where the night crew was sleeping was a corridor to see outside and came thru talking and laughing and having a good time. One unfortunate person came into my room to mop the floor. We had condensation as soon as the electricity went off. Said individual come into my room with her small chatty child with her..... and her small chatty child had toys.... they were all so very chatty until I said 'DO YOU MIND.... STOP TALKING... I AM TRYING TO SLEEP HERE'. I am sure I have the title of bitch of the year but PLEASE some consideration should have been shown. I got maybe 3 hours sleep. I went back on duty at 7pm till this am. When I left the hospital I walked down the same hall, singing and whistling, and slamming doors, just my little way of letting them know what it's like. I am back on duty at 7 pm tonight.... but before you think what a dedicated nurse I am.....I will confess that we don't have A/C at home and no running water. Work looks like a vacation to me and I get paid..... no problem deciding where I want to be!!
With in the next few days I will post pictures of the hurricane crew. Our house is in good shape but we lost a few trees and of course the yard is a mess. Oh well, small problems compared to what could have happened. Stan and Joshua pretty well secured the house with the windows boarded up and all yard items secured. Apparently a tornado whipped thru and did most of the damage down the street. Again we are blessed. Now to all of you who prayed and kept us safe.... continue with the prayers to keep Josephine and Ike away from the gulf...... we have 11 days till the wedding. I Love you all.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Sept 1 at 5:12 AM D.O.G. (Day of Gustav)

The night has been uneventful. No wind and no noise... very very still until a few minutes ago. The wind has started up... it's very gentle and pleasant. We have had a few patients but all in all it has been a quiet night and I was able to read a book and worry about my unmentionables that I put on tonight that are a size to small. It's hard to worry about a future hurricane when you have a constant wedgie.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

11:20 PM the night before Gustav

I have a question.... does food consumed during a hurricane count against your total intake? We are thinking that hurricane calories don't count and in fact if you eat standing up you end up in a negative calorie situation.

Update Sunday 7:30pm

Eerie..... that's what the I-10 corridor looks like going to work. No cars, scary clouds overhead, light rain and just a little wind. It's quiet. Breaux Bridge looks like a ghost town. Walmart is CLOSED... you really know your butt is in a sling when the local Walmart is closed. Businesses are boarded up and no one is on the street except the fool who is typing this blog.....and I was on my way to work. I have food, toothbrush, hairbrush and lipstick.... now really, I am WAY prepared. I came into work to the gentle voices of people yelling at each other over the schedule. My feeling is just shut the hell up, we have a job to do and we get paid. The upside is I have good food, toothbrush, and the prayers of many.... so I am blessed. We still have people here in Breaux Bridge that haven't left. One of my favorite patients (with permission I use her name) Doris Rollins is staying with her adopted son and his wife the Guidrys. Please say abundant prayers for them. She has breathing problems that become severe in a short time and she would never make it to the hospital during the storm. I am on a short fuse and people are still bitching about coming in. My feeling is they don't show up.....terminate their butts.
On that friendly note..... I will close and write later. Love to all.

Update on Gustav the Big BJ

Now don't get me wrong I am not trying to make light of what is headed our way by calling Gustav the big blow job... but think about it. You get all worked up he blows thru and you are left with a bad taste in your mouth. It looks like it is going to hit mid-morning tomorrow. I have been called and have to bring all my stuff to the hospital and won't be home till Tuesday AM. This has the potential of scaring the shit out of me. Stan has been cooking all day and I have food to take to the hospital and I have a toothbrush. I am worried about my family. I wish they all would go north but no go. Joshua went to the studio and got all the stuff relating to the studio just incase.... Bentley is still missing and my other dogs are restless. Well I need to go, get my hair dried and pack up and go. Keep us in your prayers

Gustav or the Big Blow Job

Well it looks like we are going to take a hit. Our patients are being evacuated today BUT the ER will remain open. It is being forecasted as a Cat 4 on landfall in Terrabonne Parrish and by the time it gets to Carencro it should be down to a 3.... boy that's a HUGE relief. I can't get Stan and Joshua to leave with the dogs and I doubt that I will be able to make it home tomorrow morning. Just in case you are wondering... the wedding is on.... on where remains to be seen......but it is still on. Bring rain slickers... Hanna is still out there. Say a prayer.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Update on Gustav

Just in case you never watch TV..... Gustav is a cat 4 now and it hasn't hit the gulf yet..... and no Gustav is not a friend of Sponge Bob. My FBFFJJ( that is Florida best friend forever JoJo) and my FBFFHP(Florida best friend forever husband Perry) called me to let me know that this is going to be a monster storm and that they were thinking about me. Well my understanding is that we will evacuate our patients this weekend to a hospital up north Louisiana BUT we will leave the ER open. Now I wish that I loved med-surg nursing. Keep Becky and me in your prayers, we will both be on duty in different ERs

Here We Go Again and Wedding Update

I am getting a little tired of hurricanes. I have been on duty for the last several big ones and it looks like by luck of the draw I get Gustav with the rest of my co-workers. We discussed what we will bring to the hospital for food in case we get stuck there all day. Hurricane food is important because it needs to provide a lot of energy and has to be portable so you can eat on the run. Things like Ding-Dongs, potato chips, cookies and Twinkies come to mind but to each his own. As of 8am this Saturday morning Gustav is a Cat 3. Oh joy. I think I am going to do a prayer march around the church and the reception place.... I may also include the restaurant owned by the caterer. I wish that the rest of you faithful 2 readers would include these areas in with your nightly prayers.. seems a bit selfish but..... well, it is a lot selfish but I really want the wedding to go off without a hitch. Please also pray for the whole state just in case, we have had enough. Everything is done for the wedding(I think) except that I don't have my shoes. If all else fails I can probably get by with just painting my toenails.... my dress is really long. Oh I almost forgot... I have to finish putting bows on the bubbles and bells and do the little wedding souvenirs( I am going to enlist my mother-in-law and my Florida BFF Jo-Jo to help with the souvenirs). The gift bags will be done by Becky and me next week. I have it on a good source from the Queen of gift bags, sister Patti, that they are going to be great!! She really didn't want to know but I wanted to make sure they were up to her standards. I have purchased the wine, beer and colas for the party Friday night and the caterer is ready with the snacks. Come for fun and bring your cameras.
Well I must go to bed... I will keep you all posted about the weather and what is happening down here in in Louisiana.

P.S. Bentley is still AWOL. I can only pray that someone nice has him.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Mr. Bentley

Wednesday morning at 5am I let my 8 year old English bulldog out to do his business. He loves to sniff and pee, sniff and pee for what seems like forever. He must investigate the whole backyard to make sure that no other dog has invaded his kingdom. He chases the neighbor's chickens that they have allowed to run free and checks out the bunnies that the neighbors have also allowed to roam. He takes his time and returns inside when all is right with his world or his dinner is ready or he is too hot. I leave the door just cracked and about 10 minutes later he comes in to go back to bed. This day he didn't come back in and I missed him about 30 minutes later. I called and whistled and shook his noise maker to no avail. I was heart sick and went out to look for him. I saw him two fields over with another dog, sniffing away and not responding to my yelling.... then he disappeared from view. He has not returned home yet and my heart is broken. He doesn't do well in the heat. I am praying that someone has found him and just can't resist those beautiful brown eyes. If you have him please note that he sleeps in your bed(usually on his back with his feet in the air), he will sit on your lap in the recliner and he loves to chase lights and noise makers. He is a gentle soul with a big heart and a stubborn streak. He has raised a boxer and another English bulldog and puts up with all kinds of dog abuse. Demi and Elizabeth are missing him. They went out the other night and stood in the back yard butt to butt and just barked... then changed direction and barked again. They both have investigated his kennel and searched the house. Elizabeth went to his kennel and whined. Bentley we are all missing you. I hope you are on a grand adventure.. but if not, know that you have my heart with you and I greatly miss the weight of you on my legs. It's not the same at home without you. Bentley, my "Mr. Man" come home.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

OH CRAP......

You cannot expect that all things will be done perfectly and according to plan when you are having a big event for instance a WEDDING. The first problem was the closing of the restaurant where the reception was to be held. That actually was a blessing in disguise because the wonderful Ted Viator found us The Crown Room and a great caterer so that problem was quickly solved. Lots of great things happened since then like I found all my 'duds' at one store within 90 minutes, we have a great cake, we have had 2 great parties, we have the hair, nail, and makeup people lined up. All was just as smooth as glass. The only thing left last week to do was the GIFT Bags (which if you read Blog 4/20/08 you will understand its' level of importance ) the wedding favors and most important the INVITATIONS. The invitations came in and we picked them up Wednesday. I went to Becky's and pulled one to take to work. I looked it over and really was thrilled at how lovely they were. I left and went on my merry way until I reached a stop light and I had a sinking feeling that I was missing something. I glanced again at the invitation and realized that it was perfect except that it was missing the TIME. Now we could send them out and people could show up at the church at 7am and just wait till the bridal party showed up or I could hand write the time on the invites or I could include a card that states the time of the event. Tammy the wonderful owner of By Invitation Only having good sense and taste, refused to allow any of the above to take place. The fact is that Tammy, Becky and I all approved the proof. Tammy made a quick call and will have the invitations ready for today in the afternoon. I have been informed by MANY people that I am way late in sending them out. Well you know what, MY BAD. So please note: The wedding of the year featuring the wonderful Rebekah and the equally wonderful Shane will be held on September 13th at 1:30pm at Our Lady of Fatima, Y'all come.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Ode to the Spanx Queen

My blogging niece requested that I place my new poem on my blogging site. I hope you all enjoy.

Ode to the Spanx Queen
One foot front of the other as I glide down the aisle,
My Spanx pulled tight, my buns in a pile
of fat squeezed together as tight as can be,
Not a whisper of space left over for me.
If I take a deep breath or do chance to fart
I am afraid that I will come busting apart
and show to the audience what I've tried so to hide,
My rippley thighs and my butt a mile wide.
The End
My friend Troy Sonnier felt that we could make some serious money. He could film me trying to pull up the spanx and put it on the internet on a pay for view venue...... hummmmmmmm

Monday, August 4, 2008

Addendum to Spanx and the Intimacy Factor

I have been married for 28 years and my husband has certainly seen it all as far as I am concerned. He has seen me "nekkid", he held my head when I have been sick, he has been a rock by my side during a few surgeries and he watched the birth of our daughter. I have never been shy but do admit to trying to disguise the fact that I have stockpiled enough fat to get me through a world class famine. Shyness is a strange thing. We are shy about certain things that given a different circumstance the shyness flies out the window. An example is giving birth. In normal circumstances no woman wants to be bare assed, legs in the air in front of a group of people.....but in the last transition of labor you don't care if the entire graduating class of medical students from John Hopkins is looking at your nether regions, you just want that baby OUT. Most people also don't like company in the bathroom either but I would sooner have done my business in the middle of field at half-time than ask my husband to help me pull my Spanx up.... which is what I had to do.
I wanted to show Stan what my wedding clothes looked like and get his approval. I put them on without my Spanx and I looked terrible. My house was cool, I was not sweating so I figured I could get my spanx on without trouble. I made it as far as my waist. I would push the fat down and pull the Spanx up on one side and the fat would pop out on the other side. I battled that bitch for about 10 minutes when my hands were cramped, I was sweating and I was exhausted. I had to get Stan to help me. I walked into the kitchen with the Spanx to just above my waist... I had the mother of all muffin tops(that's what the fat is called that over hangs your jeans)I asked Stan to help me. This had the POTENTIAL of a very caring, intimate moment when the loving husband assists the poor wife. Stan took one look at me and to give him credit, did not actually laugh out loud he just sort of turned the color of a ripe apple and started making snorting noises....... "How do you want me to help you?" I asked him to pull it up over my butt higher and hoist it up to my boob line while I grabbed the front at the same time. He nearly lifted me off the floor from behind but accomplished the deed. He suggested that this would make a great picture on my blog. Then he laughed. Briefly. It's hard giving the evil eye while I was standing there in the kitchen, in only a spanx, with sweat dripping down my face. I have decided that I have to wear this thing every day for a period of time for two reasons. First I need the practice in getting it up by all by myself and lastly I really need to learn to pee in it because once this thing is on I am not taking it down for any reason other than to go to bed.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Spanx It Ain't yo Mama's Girdle Anymore

I found my outfits for the wedding yesterday. I now have to figure out a way to pay for them but I will worry about that tomorrow. Like most woman of more ample proportions the idea is to try to hide or disguise your ample-ness. I personally was excited to discover that the Muumuu (or MOOMOO..depending on just how big you are) is back in style. This news flash is according to People Magazine. I can still see Liz Taylor back in the 70's bedecked in her jewels and her Muumuu... and she looked just wonderful. The only problem with the Muumuu is that if you have cankles(fat ankles) they still show. I remember in junior high school having to wear a girdle to hold your hose up. Man I hated those things because they rolled at the waist and they were just plain miserable. I gave up girdles in the 70's and never looked back and swore to myself that I would NEVER squeeze myself into one of those things again. Flash to the present. I tried on many dresses yesterday. I found myself looking for the long jacketed loose items that would 'disguise' the fact that I only lost about 20 lbs on my quest for the 100 that I PROMISED myself that I would lose. I was waited on by a wonderful salesperson at Dillards. Ms. Phyllis Guidry is the BOMB. She was honest about the loose fitting items and basically told me that the only person that I was fooling was myself and that I needed to wear fitted clothes that were in style. I found the courage to try on really fitted items and found the best things. She suggested that I might be more comfortable with my appearance if I would only unbend my 70's promise to myself and try a Spanx to take care of the bulges. I agreed and she brought me one. Dear God it took me at least 5 minutes to get the thing on. I have problems with my hands anyway but I had to drag that thing up my legs over my butt. The lady in the next room was giggling at my grunts and swearing. She finally laughed out loud and asked me if I needed help. I declined stating that I had to learn to do it myself because I don't have a dresser to help me at home. I swear it sounded like two pigs mating. I grunted, swore, grunted, swore and finally got it up. No joking I was broken out in a sweat and my hands were cramping. Ms. Phyllis was right it made a significant difference in how the outfits looked. Once up it was really comfortable and it goes from your knees to just under your boobs. I only have one concern.... at the wedding how am I going to pee.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I was sitting at work with my feet kicked back( no lives to save or pain to relieve) and had a genuine OH MY GOD moment. I was casually looking at the schedule and realized that the wedding is in 7 weeks or 53 days. I have not lost my 100 lbs and I think at this point it is fruitless. I am however getting my teeth bleached. Hopefully they will be so white that the glow will dim the size of my butt. Not only do we have a wedding BUT a week later Cornerstone Dance Theatre is having a performance benefiting the ALS local chapter. We are having a silent auction AND the last number of the performance is our dancers and 3 local artists... doing live paintings to offer in the auction. I have just one tiny question.... how do you run a silent auction?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Kodak and Hands Don't Lie

I have had an ongoing war with the mirror. I am able to look in the mirror and pretty much see what I want to see. I am sure that any of you have had the experience of seeing a picture of yourself and thinking(if you are honest) 'I can't believe I look this bad,fat, old,tired, etc..... you get my drift. Mirrors are a reflection of yourself colored by who you think you are, your feelings about yourself and who you want to be. But I got to tell you all, Kodak doesn't lie. Years ago when fuchsia was a big color in the 80's, Stan and I went to a party. I bought a dress that the MIRROR told me was just beautiful on me. It was a clingy fuchsia number that made me feel really good about myself. I remember Stan telling me that I looked nice. We went to the party and I had my camera in tow and someone borrowed it to take a picture. The picture was of about 10 women sitting on the back of a very long couch... basically a butt view. When I had the pictures developed they had a violet tint to them and as I was scanning thru them I stopped at the pic of all the girls with their butts up against the back of the couch. I just couldn't place who the cow was in the purple dress.... I just knew she had a HUGE butt. I took my brain about 30 seconds to process that the COW was moi. I was horrified. I was not that huge. That's when I realized that mirrors lie and as stated earlier, Kodak doesn't.
Hands are also truth givers. My sister Barb used to pinch the top of her hands and the skin would sort of stay in the pinched position before it slid back down to the top of the hand. She would lament that it was a sure sign of aging. I look at my hands and see the swollen, misshaped joints and it reminds me of my mom. My hands hurt because of arthritis and I wake up after sleep and have trouble making them work without running them under hot water. Yep, despite what my mirror says my hands let me know each morning that I am getting older. But you know something, it really isn't so bad, these misshapen hands of mine. It is a visible reminder that I have spent years taking care of my family, writing volumes of nursing notes, knitting untold numbers of blankets, taking care of the sick, easing the pain of others, holding the hands of loved ones, clapping for my offspring's achievements, and last but not least held in prayer.
When I go out of my house feeling good about myself after looking in my mirror, it okay that I see someone different than what Kodak sees. I feel good about me and that is just fine.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Elite's 2008 Summer Intensive

This year Josh and Des gathered together some of the best talent in the country to provide a meaningful summer intensive workshop for our students. They covered modern dance, hip-hop, ballet, Latin, and tumbling. The fun part for me is that I got to be the hostess to these talented young men and women. I went every day to drop instructors off and stayed to watch. The wonderful thing was watching them work with our kids and how are kids absorbed everything they were taught.

When Josh danced in New Orleans his roommate
was J. R. Kirchner. JR married Diana Stetsura a
Russian ballerina. She has
gifted us with her
instruction for 2 years and
the kids love her. Diana is prima ballerina with Milwaukee Ballet Company.

The pic above is of JR and Diana. JR works for UBS and spends his time making investments for his clients. JR still dances on a part time basis especially around Nutcracker Season. JR has been a part of our family for years and now we get to add Diana in the group! The picture on the right is Al Blackstone from New York and Diana with the senior group. Al is originally from a family of dancers from New Jersey. He taught Broadway dance to a group of very receptive students!!

This is a pic of Diana, Al, Des and Joshua mugging for the camera.

The picture on the right is of Adrenaline Dance Company's own Ryan Warren. His speciality is Hip-Hop. He spent time with Elite's Jazmyn Harmon to give her private instruction and work on her solo. Without a doubt Jaz is the best in Lafayette and we have to go out of state to find someone advanced enough to instruct her.

What can I say about Tennessee's Hip -Hop phenom Keith Fitzpatrick except that he is a wonderful house guest, a gifted teacher and an all around great guy. Keith is with Dancer's Rock and seems impressed with our crew.

The pic on the left is our first week's teachers. From left to right is Elite's tumbling instructor,Seth Aymond( Seth is a Cheerleader with UL), Dee Aubrey- Latin/Salsa instructor, Keith Fitzpatrick, Joshua and in their arms is Jessica Touchet- with Smuin Ballet Co. in San Francisco. Jessica is also an old dance mate of Joshua's.

Here is Desiree Doucet, Co-owner of Elite and her most understanding of husbands, Patrick.

On the right is a picture of Walter Hull from Houston, Texas. He is the founder of Urban Souls Dance Company and a superb Modern dancer. The girls had him last and came from the room sweating. He worked them hard but they learned so much!! Thanks Walter!!!

Keith and the juniors.

Jessica Touchet and the seniors on the right.

And when all was said and done, their feet were burning but their spirits were high. They all said that it was the best intensive yet.