Friday, May 2, 2014

A Musical Interlude....

To tide the blog over until Summer vacation, here is my friend Kimmie's husband Pepe Romero, Jr.  Not only is he a premier guitar and ukelele artisan (Luthier), he also is a damned-fine guitarist.

Around minute 19:00 Pepe Romero, Sr. strums in his signature flamenco style.  At 20:20, he convinces Pepe, Jr. to play.  The music that they make is beautiful.     Wow.



AND....
Here is a fun little session recorded in the Esquire office by Old 97s singing "Please Mr. Please" by Olivia Newton John.   Rhett Miller remains as hot as ever.  *sigh*

Thursday, April 3, 2014

A breath of fresh air...

Well, Cristina is 12 years old... 
She is my pensive, oldest daughter:  the voracious reader, the accomplished writer, and lover of animals. She is the voice of reason, albeit quiet, in an all too often chorus of chaos. Cristina is my artsy, french-horn playing, tolerator of mathematics, who, to be honest, loves a good fart joke. She is my Spring baby who is always a breath of fresh air.

Happy birthday to you, my love!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

So much...

There is so much to report, but there is so little time in which to report it.
I didn't want February to pass without reminding the world that this sweet face has turned 16 years of age.
Screenshot from video circa 2000.
Poor Jake was sick and was taking comfort in his paci, blanket, cars, and Bear.
Some photos of the sweet boy that he was and
the young man that he has become.
My heart hurts to see him so grown up....now get that license and run some errands for me. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year!

For New Year's Eve, we followed our family tradition of watching the last sunset of the year at our favorite beach.




To guarantee our luck and prosperity in the new year, we ate our traditional meal of black-eyed peas, turnip greens, ham, and cornbread.  Delicious!
  We hope that 2014 finds you all healthy, happy, and prosperous and those blessings continue throughout the coming year. *love*

Monday, December 16, 2013

What's on your shelf?

If you have kids or spend any time on Pinterest, you have no doubt heard of the ubiquitous Elf on the Shelf.  It could be described as another battle in the "Mommy Wars" wherein Moms try to surprise their kids with the whimsical, magical adventures of their Elf.

In my home, as is par for the course, we do things differently.  I present this year's Christmas card...


The kids and I had a blast setting up the situations for our Elvis dolls.  We were worried that some wouldn't "get" the card, but everyone seems to love it.  Hey, it's Elvis.  What's not to love?

Now you know why Elvis was stirring the brine.  :)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Who helps make the brine?

Elvis helps make the brine. Don't ask questions!

This is the same brine recipe that I have used since either 1998 or 1999...I can't remember.  It is the bomb-diggity and Elvis knows it. :)
Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Halloween 2013

Just a quick post to share some adorable photos of my Boo Crew, 2013.

My sweet little Vampira, Cristina

Meow...my skele-kitty, Gabriela

Daniel, the Zombie hunter


Jake, the goblin 

My dreamboat
(Even Daisy has to take a second look at his awesomeness!)

Our front door
The view from the sidewalk

The view from the street.  (Love the Scream character in Daniel's room!)
Come on up!
If you dare...








Thursday, August 15, 2013

Fore!

I am pretty proud of my little golfer Daniel.  In June, he was invited to a tournament that was hosted by North County Junior Golf Association.  He did really well!  He placed 5th in his division, which isn't bad considering this was his first tournament.

So, we were super-proud of his golf accomplishments and now we have another to add.  His golf club called yesterday and gave us some great news.  Daniel was invited to attend a luncheon and play a round of golf with some Callaway reps later in August.  They chose him because of his talent and his personality.  Fun!  I am so happy for my sweets.  What an honor for him!

Here are some shots from the June tournament...
Taking aim....
And he swings.  We couldn't walk with him, so the closest shot that
I was able to get was when he teed off from the first hole.  So adorable. 

Sweet.

Someone needed a haircut....

Tournament sign and putting practice.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Mississippi Queen

Yeah, that's correct.  I am like royalty!

My family definitely needed some Mississippi/Tennessee time this summer.  We just returned home and it was a fantastic visit.  The theme for this visit?   My husband and kids are simply too good to be true and I am freakin' unbelievably lucky to have been blessed with this family.   Theme #2?  I love my life.

Here are some pictures, in no particular order:

Did I mention that we drove?  Here the kids are in Arizona.
We stayed with my Daddy.  Love the area around his house.
His house is in Hernando.  I love Hernando's Courthouse Square.
We often had ducks as sentries.
You can never have enough kudzu.
When visiting with my daddy, there is always some of this...
And some of this...
And a lot of this.  (This is a hole in the wall place near my dad's house.) 
Did I forget this?  Dale's is the yummiest (other than home-cooked.)
These greens and purple-hull peas were a little piece of heaven.
But my favorite things are the views...




We even went by my elementary school:  Southaven Elementary School.
I did go to Hope Sullivan for a year and a half, but this was the school that I remembered most.  
Old church/schoolhouse out on Malone Rd.

Look at these adorable "churn."




Visiting my mom's gravesite.


We had to visit Graceland, of course.
So many choices for an Elvis fan.  #TCB





Sunday, January 6, 2013

Crazy Catch-Up Post v2.0-Cycling

In the last post, I caught up on the quilts that I've made since neglecting this blog.  In the post, I wanted to update you on my bike situation.  (Yes, in my opinion, it deserves its own post.)

Early in 2012, I tore my right meniscus.  Believe it or not, it happened at the gym stepping off of the treadmill.  I didn't realize that is what I had done and trying to talk myself out of any real pain (sheesh, I have had four children) I kept doing all of my normal exercising:  running, elliptical trainer, squats, blah, blah, blah...   Well, I did some serious damage.  Arghhhh.

Around that same time, my super-hot hubby decided that he would start riding regularly again.  Rene had been a hard-core mountain bike rider and cyclocross rider, but had never really been a serious road cyclist.  I love any opportunity to share pictures of my hotter than an oven-husband.  Here is a shot of him in a mountain bike race from back in the day:

Mmmmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmmm.

I digress....back to road cycling.  Since he was going to start riding road seriously he needed a bike upgrade.  You will find that, in our family, it doesn't take much coaxing to upgrade our bikes.

So, hubs bought himself a Cannondale CAAD-10 Ultegra on a super-sweet deal.  His other Cannondale was available and considering my growing frustration with my knee injury, I decided to give it a try.  I hadn't ridden (other than our beachcomber) in years, so I wasn't sure if I was going to work with my knee injury.  It did.  I could ride for miles and miles and my knee is pain-free.  Yippee.
(It is a temporary fix, but I just keep putting off the surgery because I can't imagine being immobile considering our fast-paced life.)

The only problem was that Rene's old bike was too big for me.  It was 54 cm and just not a good fit.  He finally talked me into buying a new bike for myself that actually fits.  So I went to my favorite bike shop, Nytro, and was fitted for a bike that fit my frame.  I ended up with a 2012 Carbon Fiber Cannondale Synapse 51cm.  Such a better fit!  Now, my arms don't fall asleep on long rides.  Here is my little sweetie....
Look how cute our bikes are together.  His and hers.  Sick, right?

Alright, so I could go on and on (wait...already have) but the long and short of it is that we have been riding fools.  The other awesome thing is that Jake is old enough now to babysit the younger kids and he craves money like crazy so it is win-win.

In November, Rene and I signed up for a Century Ride called Bike the Coast.  This century ride was 100 miles up and down the coast...not a race-just a participation ride with a little bit of a competitive feel.

We did it!  Obviously, Rene killed it way quicker than I did but I was so happy to have finished.  100 freakin' miles!


The Start Line at 6am.  Ick and Brrrr.
My bike at a SAG station.
Finally, the finish line!  (I think that I crossed it around 1:15pm.)
   Since then, we have been bundled up and riding in the cold, winter months.  That almost seems like a joke out here in California.  Seriously.   :)

As of the end of the year, I had ridden 2,714 miles and I only started in May.  So, this year I would like to double the number of miles and vary my routes.  (Because I am normally in a time crunch, I tend to stay on the same route.)  So excited for this year!  Rene and I are also planning on taking our bikes to Mississippi with us when we go this summer.  Should be hot and fun!  :)

So excited for this year!  Rene and I are also planning on taking our bikes to Mississippi with us when we go this summer.  Should be hot and fun!  :)

Ok, I feel pretty caught up.  One more, as soon as I get to it, about the family.