Our little dynamite of a granddaughter stayed with us from Wednesday morning till Friday morning. She loves it out here in the country and the freedom for playing that this brings!
We made peanut butter hay stacks, created love cards (since Valentines is over) for her mom, dad and dad’s girlfriend Kim. She loved the glitter paint, heart and love glue on stickers and the glue on crystals and princess crown crystals she got to use.
We went to White’s seafood for dinner Thursday and on Wednesday she and Paw Paw enjoyed a pizza while watching the movie “Enchanted”. Grannie went to a Young Living Essential Oil hand scanning that night which I’ll write about another day.
On Thursday we went fishing almost all day. The final fish count was Madisyn 3, Roy and Rosalyn 0. The excitement on her face when that first fish was caught was indescribable! That afternoon she asked the two neighbor girls to come fishing with her and that was simply too precious! She had her special ice cream time with Paw Paw each night but only because she ate healthy good food during the day. We had plenty of fruits, yogurt and other healthy food and she loved snacking on those!
The pictures below are from our time with Madisyn this week. There are a lot of pictures because I just couldn’t choose a few. They were all special in their own way. You’ll see Jake, the dog that visits us often, in these pictures. He and Madisyn became good buddies!
Well another adventure with Madisyn is over. We brought her to her mom on Friday morning and are still recovering!!!!! It’s the best kind of exhaustion a grand parent can have!
This post was published last year on Mardi Gras. It continues to be one of the top viewed posts I publish so I thought I’d post it new this year in case someone missed it last year! New 2015 pictures have been added!
2014 – I’ve been given the day off work so I’m ready for some play time! I’ve played all morning with our granddaughter Madisyn who is celebrating her 5th birthday! We had a special breakfast of waffles with fresh blueberries and strawberries on top and a fruit smoothie. Lunch was peanut butter and jelly so breakfast had to be special. Roy’s working all day today on his ad creations so it’s Madisyn and Grannie time all day!
It’s freezing cold and raining here today and unfortunately raining in New Orleans and Metairie on the Mardi Gras parades. For those who don’t know, Mardi Gras lasts for two weeks with dozens of parades nightly all around the area. Today, is Mardi Gras Day and even though the weather is terrible enough to keep some people home there are thousands still out on the streets today catching beads, doubloons, trinkets and coconuts. Yes, coconuts! The Krewe of Zulu throw coconuts that have been painted in brilliant colors by hand and are considered a huge prize to catch one from one of their floats.
Mardi Gras (in New Orleans and the surrounding cities) is 99% family oriented (acceptable viewing by all) involving massive amounts of food (mostly fried chicken and king cake and lots of BBQ), music, bead and doubloon catching and fun with family and friends. The 1% of Mardi Gras that is filled with nudity, perversion, drunkness, etc. is what the media picks up and shows the world. Never ever fear to come to Mardi Gras because of that. What you see and experience will not include that unless you choose to go there.
One very New Orleans Mardi Gras tradition is the ladders. Dads and Grandpas (yes and maybe some Moms and Grannies) make wooden boxes to attach to the ladders for the kiddies to sit in so they can see the parade over the parents heads and catch tons more goodies. My dad held me on his shoulders for many parades when I was little and I’m sure he’d have liked to have had a ladder back then when I got bigger! The ladders and boxes are painted and decorated in traditional purple, green and golds making the parade route even more colorful! Seems like someone got creative one year and figured out how to get the box to fold up and roll it all on wheels!
The New Orleans Police force knows how to do Mardi Gras and keep control over hundreds of thousands of partiers for days on end during Mardi Gras season. This video clip shows a couple of policemen getting into it with parade goers doing the Wobble. Only in New Orleans!
Here’s the policeman back on the streets this morning during the Zulu parade doing the Cupid Shuffle with the residents!
Another only in New Orleans pictures…. NOPD officers handing out free donuts to the Carnival crowd from the back of one of their squad cars.
The picture below is an old tree in New Orleans that has filled up with beads over the years and lives this way all year long!
I seem to be finding more videos of NOPD officers participating in Mardi Gras this year than usual. The one below is of an officer leading a cheer with the crowd.
Since most of the schools close here for the week of Mardi Gras a good many families traditionally take a vacation to Disneyworld, Colorado or somewhere since most American children are in school and these high traffic destinations are a lot less crowded. A bunch of people from our church in New Orleans where I grew up, Lakeview Baptist Church use to go skiing in Colorado every Mardi Gras. The church flooded terribly in Katrina, was restored and is now a new church incorporated the original membership and another churches membership so I don’t know if they still do that. But this type of tradition take a lot of people away from the city when it is it’s fullest with people from all over arriving for Mardi Gras. This morning the news reporter asked one man where he was from and he said San Diego, then the next where they were form and they said New York and the next was from Washington DC. While the New Orleanians are flying out, the rest of the world is flying in there!
There are plenty of parades before Mardi Gras day for the New Orleanians to get their fill. Just the weekend before are Endymion and Bacchus which are the two super parades with spectacular floats every year. FLOATS are professionally built and quite expensive. TRUCK FLOATS are made by organizations and families and while expensive to make don’t carry quite the huge price tag that regular floats do.
Below are some floats related pictures of floats created by Blaine Kern at Mardi Gras World. Below those are three pictures of truck floats called that because they are pulled by either tractors or trucks. In all the small towns we’ve visited when they had parades they were all pulled by trucks or tractors but none of their truck floats were like the ones in Mardi Gras parades. I loved the small town parades but Mardi Gras has it’s own brand of parade truck float making!
Here’s the Mardi Gras Food Pyramid – don’t know why fried chicken is missing though!
Okay, our little princess birthday girl just woke up from a good nap so it’s time to quit the blogging and have play time with her!!
Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!
Here’s some new pictures from this year’s Mardi Gras 2015!
“The No. 1 Muses treasure and one of the greatest trophies in all of Carnival, is the custom-decorated recycled shoe,” reports Doug MacCash. “Each year, the glitter-encrusted pumps, sandals and stilettos seem to become more elaborate and expressive.”
Watch the Endymion parade in this 2 minute time-lapse video shot on Orleans Avenue as the 3,000 men of the Krewe of Endymion roll down their traditional Mid-City route with their parade “Fantastic Voyages” on Saturday, February 14, 2015. After the first few smaller floats you’ll see some of the biggest floats in Mardi Gras. Click on the picture below to watch the video.
“The No. 1 treasure from the Krewe of Muses and one of the greatest trophies in all of Carnival, is the custom-decorated recycled shoe,” reports Doug MacCash. “Each year, the glitter-encrusted pumps, sandals and stilettos seem to become more elaborate and expressive.” Here are some examples and a picture of one of their shoe floats.
Here’s something I’ve never seen but it’s very New Orleans Mardi Gras. The Laissez Boys in Tucks. Now do they know how to parade in style and comfort, or what? Viva Naugahyde! Click on the picture below to watch the short video!
Well that wraps up this years (and last years) edition of It’s Mardi Gras Time in New Orleans!
Roy and I really like these sturdy roll up hose thingies (had to look up that word since thingy isn’t a real word but the recommended plural is thingies) and brought one with us to our new little house. Roy attached it Friday so we’re all set. He created some bolt thing made up of three or four different parts to attach to the wall without damaging the vinyl siding.
Madisyn spent the night with us Saturday and went to church with us Sunday morning to Trinity and not one picture was taken. Too much playing!
Her mom picked her up after church and we went on to Lowe’s where we purchased 26 – 50 pound bags of concrete on Sunday. Roy placed them between the ditch dirt walls and the culvert outside wall to stop dirt on the side from floating away if it gets wet. More money gone into the hole, sure hope it turns out to be worth it!
Monday, February 17, 2015 – The sheet rock guys came back to put their first layer of mud on the sheet rock. Here’s pics which may not do anything for ya’ll but I see progress in every tape and mudding! The red X in one of the pictures is where the medicine cabinet will go.
Roy is going to put the porch railings in between the columns, so he measured the distance this morning. They should be the same but they weren’t. One set was 6′ 1/2″ apart and the other was 6′ 3″ apart. Since the railings need to be the same size and the two sets of columns should be the same distance apart, Roy’s out there right now moving the columns. This man is so amazing and wants everything to be just perfect – guess ya’ll can see why he married perfect me!! hahahahahaha!
He’s on his way now to order two six foot railings from Mayeux’s in Hammond where we got all the vinyl and aluminum outside stuff from. Then onto Lowe’s to buy something to attach the columns to the cement better – yes Mr. Perfection!
DISABILITY APPLICATION UPDATE:
Social Security wants my 1983 W2 from Alliance Federal Savings and Loan but they don’t even exist any longer so that will require a lot of digging. They also want something from 2007 which may be a little more doable but still requires research since I only have tax returns back to 2008.
I needed Southeastern’s approval one of of the LASERS forms but the said I can’t apply for retirement disability since I’m already retired. I have to contact their main office in Baton Rouge to ask for an exception since when I retired I didn’t know I was disabled, just knew I had brain problems which affected my ability to do my work well. Retiring then seemed like the best way for me to relieve myself of that stress and for us to get on the road in our new lifestyle.
So I’m stuck with both avenues to disability being blocked at this time. Hopefully when Mardi Gras is over and I can reach LASERS (yes the state basically shuts down for Mardi Gras and the day before which is Lundi Gras) and when I get the SS information we can move forward.
The sheet rock guys should be back tomorrow for another coating of mud so unless something thrilling happens tomorrow I won’t be writing about construction. I have updated my 2014 Mardi Gras blog and added some 2015 photos and videos. That will be published tomorrow morning!
This has been quite a day. Yesterday we thought that there wouldn’t be any construction going on today. Man were we wrong! I have to say the following in big letters, so pretend I’m standing on the roof shouting this to the world:
I ABSOLUTELY LLLLOOOOVVVVEEEE THIS HOUSE WE ARE BUILDING!!!!!!!!!!! WOW, WOW, WOW!!
The transformation from yesterday to today (sheetrock and columns) make the house look much more finished and much more what we dreamed it would look like.
The sheet rock crew showed up early this morning,instead of Monday, and by the time I woke up already had the ceiling sheet rocked! By 2 o’clock they had the sheet rock hung in the entire house! The purple sheet rock in the pictures is where water might affect it so it’s water resistant. We can see rooms take shape and really love it even more. All of the rooms are good size and we couldn’t be happier!
The vinyl siding and columns guys game back this morning so there were trucks everywhere with every one working inside and out! Our contractor Ronnie came to check out things before he leaves for Disneyworld with his family for a week. Our concerns about the window header yesterday have been resolved. We compromised. We kept the headers which will now be painted to match the real white of the window wrapping. Also the space between the header and the large board of wrapping will be caulked to close in that space making it all look like one piece. I wanted the piece along the top of the window to be removed to but the header against the large board but that would cause a problem with water getting behind the header so like I said we compromised. Floyd our vinyl siding guy is on a plane right now heading to Colorado so the “fix” will happen when he return.
Yesterday there were sticks holding the porch up, today there are beautiful columns. I’ll say it again, I LOVE THIS HOUSE! Sure wish the sheet rock trailer wasn’t in the way but you can see how great it’s turning out!
Roy bought some 10 inch massive nails to nail into trees for hanging my new bird feeders on. I just love these feeders and hope they attract lots of happy birds to come visit us!
Madisyn will be here soon so I want to wrap this up and get ready for the fun and activity we’ll have with her! A campfire and Smores are on the agenda!!
Ya’ll have a LOVELY VALENTINES! and Ya’ll come back now, ya’ hear!
Thursday, February 12, 2015 – I went to a local wholesale nursery, where I use to work, to buy all the shrubs for the front of our house and to hide the air conditioning unit and the water well shed. I bought 6 Encore Azaleas (they flower all summer unlike regular azaleas that only flower for less than a month.) Also bought 3 Knock Out Rose bushes, 6 Camellias and 3 Adagio Grass. The Adagio Grass is the three dead looking tall grass things on the end. The grass plants be cut back shortly and will come out beautiful, green and luscious! All the bushes are all lined up on the RV’s patio waiting for the yard to be graded and beds prepared. We hope to have the grading done soon which will give the freshly planted bushes a while before we leave to take hold.
While I was out I stopped at Brown’s Bakery on Highway 16 where I purchased some bavarian cream stuffed cupcakes. Oh my what a treat that was! I also bought some decorative bird feeders to hang on the trees, including on that is shaped like an old time camper with a pink flamingo out front. That one will be hung by our RV patio!
Roy built the roof for the water well shed and installed it. Probably not something he should have tried to do by himself but he did it well. Tomorrow it should be painted and will be finished.
Friday, February 13, 2015 – The vinyl siding installers came back today. The wall insulation man also came and did his thing. Here’s pictures and a short video of the insulation guys doing their thing!
This video doesn’t exist
Lots of pictures of the vinyl siding guys. They wrapped the windows with an exterior 2 x 4 wood frame which is then covered with vinyl to match the windows. It creates a more substantial looking window than just a regular window. Only the front four at our house are being wrapped because it ain’t cheap! We’re leaving the shutters off because we really like the look we chose. You’ll see the process throughout the pictures and I warn I took lots of pictures of this!
The sun is setting now and the columns are not finished so I’ll not try to take a picture of anything now, but take them in the morning and post the finished result then in the next blog. Earlier, Roy had to ask the guys to stop putting in the window headers since they are narrower than the windows and not connected to the top of the window. They just look weird so we’ll have to wait for larger ones to come in before the whole exterior is finished. There is a picture below that has the weird looking header installed but remember it’s going away! I also took a picture of one of the side windows without the window wrapping so you could see the difference between regular and wrapped. Once the columns are finished, the house exterior will be almost finished except for the correct headers and the porch railings. Roy will be installing the railings soon.
Roy rarely just sits around lately but this morning was so cold and he didn’t want to be in the way of the workers so we built a campfire and I took a shot of him actually chillin! There is also a picture of the flower bed I created next to the RV patio with all the little clippings I brought with us from our Wardline house! There are regular azaleas, orange/yellow lantanas, gardenias, ferns and other random small plants! Most are hidden right now by the pine mulched I covered them all with. By the time we get back here later this year or next they should all be growing well. Might even happen before we leave! Check out the signs of green rye grass starting to FINALLY sprout!
00The sheet rock was just delivered ready to be hung, etc. etc. next week! Yay for walls!
There will be no building going on this weekend but we will have a special visit from Madisyn for Valentines AND she’s going to church with us Sunday! Yahoooooooo!
I attended church today at River Rock Church in Loranger with our granddaughter Madisyn and her mom Liz. For those who know our past, don’t be so shocked, yes we sat together in church and the building didn’t fall down around us!!! We both know that it’s in Madisyn’s best interest for us all to get along so we try!
I’ve been to River Rock several times over the last few years. One thing their pastor said today that I want to share is “Unless you know the Love that only God can give, you really don’t know Love. How true that is! God’s love is so big, so unconditional, so forgiving, so uplifting, so deep, so healing. and so much more. Agape love is the kind of love God has for us. It’s not a romantic love but a God love! Until you’ve given your heart and your life to Him and entered into this kind of agape love there’s just no way to truly know love.
This is where our weekend with Madisyn ended when we brought her to her mama Liz at church. We had two very special nights and a whole fantastic day playing with her yesterday. We decorated heart shaped cookies, painted rainbows, flowers and us on a piece of roofing shingle while sitting down by the pond dipping our brushes in the flowing water, practiced skipping rocks, planted flowers near the RV patio, ran around A LOT, dug dirt from the big piles and hauled it in the wheelbarrow to the plants, watered the plants, searched for colored rocks in the ditch, watched Princess Diaries, made banana and mayonnaise sandwiches (ick!), mud pies, rolled down the hills and loved on each other a lot! She is growing up so fast and is so very independent at almost 6 years old. We hope to have her some during the Mardi Gras holiday when they have a week off of school – more fun and exhaustion!!!!!!
My phone went dead (too many pictures) about this time so there’s only one more pictures – awh shucks!
Yesterday evening Roy and I took Madisyn to White’s Restaurant, not far from here. We’ve never eaten there before but always hear our friends talking about how delicious all the seafood and everything on their buffet is. Madisyn has been there before so she showed us around and picked out her snow crab claws while we filled up on fried fish, boiled shrimp, fried shrimp, onion rings, okra, boiled crabs, mushrooms, turnip greens, and on and on! Madisyn ate well and even cracked her own crab legs and got the meat out!
Yesterday morning the vinyl siding men started their work which was interesting to see how it was coming along. It took hours to do all the white trim work yesterday. Today they started the soft yellow (I call it banana cream color) siding. When I pulled up after church they were finishing for the day and hopefully will be back one day this week to finish it off. Three of the sides are done about 5/6 way up and the part over the front porch is done with the octagon shaped vent set in. I love how it looks and how the various components we chose are really coming together! The porch columns, railings, and decorative window headers will be in soon and I hope will nicely finish off the look just right.
The roofers didn’t put the drip edge on the storage building roof in the correct place so Roy had to do that himself on Saturday.
Tomorrow morning Roy Bankston will be here to start the stained cement work. I’ve never had that before but am really looking forward to seeing how it’s done!
February 4, 2015 – Not much happening here today other than more air conditioning installation this evening. Hopefully the correct size windows will arrive tomorrow and be installed – yay for rain not pouring into the windows any more! Friday we’ll have our next inspection and Saturday the vinyl siding installation will begin!
Roy spent this dreary, rainy day on the road returning some things we don’t need at Home Depot and Lowe’s and loading up on paper items at Sam’s.
I’ve spent the day catching up on creating new posts for my other two blogs, Wacky Wonderful Wednesdays (WWW) and Some Things I Learned About Alzheimer’s (STILAA) since there hasn’t been much time for that recently.
I’m closed up in my bedroom writing blog posts and jamming to Bruce Willis’ Return of Bruno (1987) one of my all time favorite CDs. Both my boys will remember us cleaning the house to his songs every Saturday morning, loud and wall thumping!! If you’ve never heard Bruce Willis sing you don’t know what you’re missing!!!!!
I’ve been asked a couple of times what happened to WWW and STILAA since some folks weren’t being notified about them any longer. What’s happened is that those folks missed the post about WWW and STILAA moving to their own sites!
This means you won’t be notified when a new one is published UNLESS you specifically go to one of the posts for that blog and click on the ‘FOLLOW” button on the right. Then enter your email address and from then on you will receive notice when a new one comes out. Easy peasy!
Here’s links to the most recent post for each of these blogs if you want to catch up or FOLLOW:
Tuesday, February 3, 2015 – Roofing material and three roofers showed up this morning at 8 am. Here’s some before and after pictures of the house and a picture of the storage building with it’s roof finished.
LATE AFTERNOON Roy and I spent many hours today at Lowe’s getting what we hope are the last things we’ll need to buy for the house. Door stops, light fixtures (for both bathrooms, master closet, master hallway, laundry room and pantry, shower rods, front and rear door locks, interior door knobs, siding for the well shed, roach killer for inside the walls, cans of foam to fill up holes, dozens of light bulbs, a broom and other miscellaneous items. You wouldn’t want to see the total of all that. So many decisions made at one time wore both of us out but it’s done!
This is Roy and Ronnie unloading our quite full truck, Boots, into the storage building. Thank goodness Roy built that building!
Here’s picture of the bathroom light fixtures. I really like both so I wanted to show you!
It’s unusual for us to hear people working after 5 but the air condition men are here installing all that. They will probably take this evening and tomorrow evening but that’s one more we can scratch off the list. This is Cory and Tory in our living room getting ready to do the A/C work!
I don’t believe anyone is coming during the day tomorrow so maybe Roy and I can get some rest.
Medical update: My neurologist ordered additional blood work to check B and D vitamins and other minerals and nutrients that I could be deficient in causing the brain atrophy. I had the blood work done this morning (6 vials of blood…. ick) and will see Dr. Shamsnia next week for him to review that and my previous MRIs compared to the most current two. Finally got the Social Security disability application finished. Took several days working on it. I’m also applying to LASERS (Louisiana Retirement) for disability through then in case I have problem getting Social Security disability due to not working in the SS system the last 10 years.
Monday, February 2, 2015 – I love waking up to the sounds of construction work going on at our new house. Our Plumber, C. Dan Wrinkles was here bright and early putting all our plumbing rough-ins in. His son Hunter was with him shadowing his dad’s work today for school. He was a very good helper for his dad and probably learned a lot today. So glad they did this at our house, it was nice to meet this fine young man!
Here’s some pictures of their work here today.
I remember when I first saw what the top part of a well looked like and I was shocked that such a sight was found by many many houses. Thankfully my honey is fixing the awful look of that sitting next to the house. Roy’s out there busy AGAIN today working on a small building to surround our well. He’s using the excess lumber we kept and came up with his own design. He’s just too smart for his own good! He plans to finish it with the same vinyl siding that’s going on the house.
The roofing material will be here Tuesday (tomorrow) morning so the roofer will start then! They will also roof the storage building so that tacky plastic covering can go away! The air conditioning will be on tomorrow’s schedule also.
The gravel Roy put at the end of the culvert by the pond seems to have survived yesterday evening’s rains. They weren’t heavy rains but I’m hopeful they will survive that as well so we can haul more of the gravel down there to finish prettying it up. If anyone has any excess larger rocks they’d like to donate to this area, we’d love to have them!
Now it’s time for me to go give the house another good sweeping so the air conditioner man can come into a clean house tomorrow. Some of the a/c equipment was just delivered from Coburns!
We have the absolute best contractor. All the work is perfectly scheduled and is going along at a great rate! Thank you Ronnie Glover for being “Da Bomb!!”