Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"the pile" has a birthday

It came to be in March of last year when the demon on a backhoe dug our gravel driveway out of 50 years worth of grass and potholes, banking it up real nice where the sides are easy weed eaten. If I had one, that is. I experimented with paying guys to do it last year but overestimated my ability to pay, so it was almost Halloween before I got square with them. But I did :) Looks like this year my brother and I will take turns doing my parents' place and share the mower three ways. Hey..we're more organized now. Thanks to all you people at Pro-Mo for giving me one summer off from yard duty. It's a bitch out here with all the orchard grass unless you've got big guns to work with. This month is going OUT like a lion with southerly wind gusts warming things up to near 80. The AC is already on because the pollen and dust are horrific and we are slaves to allergy attacks here on the hill. Anyway..the pile is still there, promised to this big old sinkhole in the pasture, formerly known as a pond. Time marches on and all that.

I work with this gal who loves animals is pimping puppies for a friend and I've met her little one named Whiskey twice. This tiny dude is a beagle/chihuahua mix but looks (and barks) mostly like a mini beagle pound puppy. He is precious and I am hopelessly in love with cute puppies so I caught myself considering one.....somebody for Sam to play with. Faith is getting middle aged and tires easy but that Sammy D surely does love to run like the wind! He played last night with Conner's dog Meko and they had a ball. As for Lily, she's still thinks she's the boss and I'm not going to expend the energy it would take to convince her otherwise. Cats are just like 13 year old girls and old ladies. Do.Not.Argue.

The deejay on my morning rock station is mean as hell and announced early this morning that it was Thursday. News guy correctly him pronto, so as not to get our hopes up that we had missed hump day in all its' glory. Any time one can see a light at the end of the tunnel known as working for corporate America, one should grab for the brass ring, so to speak. I'm just saying.

Ya'll be careful out there. And keep the faith ^j^

Saturday, March 27, 2010

first time for everything

My friend/boss and I met her hubby over at Hog Heaven the other day for lunch. Soon as we walked in and got seated Nick came over to give me a big hug and socialize with us. Bossfriend's hubby declined on the hug because guys are funny like that sometimes, especially when out in public, bless their hearts. Nothing makes my soul melt faster than seeing people who love each other show it with no regard to what other folks think. I reckon that's the peace and love thing that is the basis of all of my beliefs about life in general and relationships in particular. I do so hate petty drama. There's enough of the real life kind to go around.

BG and I spent the majority of the day cleaning and watching the Lady Vols lose to Baylor. At least Pat got to lead the duck walk at the Peabody :) Lo and behold, mama and daddy drove up for a visit in their new car! It's really been tough for them being housebound and dependent on others for a lift here and there. The gator should solve a lot of the problems stemming from daddy's cabin fever. Mama had a scarf on, an attempt to save her doo for whatever she saves it for. Beats the heck out of me!

I was absolutely torn to pieces over this WVU and Kentucky matchup because I have loyalties to both teams by proxy. Here's a high five to my fairy blogmother and a consolation prize to my KY cousin who never gave a rat's butt about sports until she moved up there and started raising chickens and herbs in her spare time.

If I live to be a hundred, I may lose the dollar store list but I'll never forget the ones who were there for me when it counted most day in and day out. Hopefully the gator will still be running and we can play ^j^

Friday, March 26, 2010

just do it

With apologies to Nike, that has become my philosophy on life. Not because I can run faster than anybody in their shoes...but because it's the only way not to miss any special moments. You know what they say about life being short and all. If, for instance, one has a passion for something and doesn't follow their heart, that person will never know what would have happened had they not taken a blind leap of faith. That's what happened to the air ambulance crew that crashed in West Tennessee yesterday morning, very close to landing safely at their base. They had successfully delivered their patient from a rural hospital to the nearest metro and were heading back in when lightning struck. All three crew members died, among them a former co-worker at the sawmill. She was a vivacious tough as nails nurse, formerly of our ER who left for greener pastures in the sky. Her nursing partner leaves a four year old behind to wonder why. The pilot was probably very close to retirement and looking forward to time with his grandchildren. All gone to heaven, in the blink of an eye. Act of Big Ernie?

We are approaching Holy Week here on the lane with high hopes of big hugs from the kid and his parents in a few days. It's been a year so he's learned a few new tricks like talking and walking. This should be interesting to say the least. Wonder how hard "aunt poopie" is to say?

I got out was forcibly taken from my safe haven to the kudzu bar yesterday evening to discuss party plans for our next shingdig which may or may not include toys for sale. This old gal will be there with bells on as there is no sign of a sugardaddy in my near future. Not even a nibble.

Ya'll have a merry fantabulous weekend ^j^

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

the long goodbye

I distinctly remember the sinking feeling that I had one day as I peered out the bathroom window at my daddy on a tractor hauling hay for the horse, in the snow of course. Out of the blue it hit me that someday he wouldn't be able to do that and I would be very sad about it. Fortunately, or perhaps by grace, my brother stepped into his shoes and used what he had learned as a farmer's son to make some very distinct improvements in the lay of the land. There has been enough heavy equipment around here to dig a hole to China and all the mud that goes with it.....

Today has been good exercise what with the monkey grass cutting and the tree transplant/pruning expedition. Most of the dead stuff is stomped on or chopped down, leaving way for spring to do its' magic. I was taking a break on the 'puter when someone pecked on the storm door. I turned around to find my daddy standing there waiting for a tour of the yard. His daily walk had led him right up the lane to where his babygirls live.

I offered to give him a lift home but he wanted to walk so I watched him as he sauntered down the lane stopping to lift his khaki work pants quite often, and pausing to stare at the sights. Thanks to the dirt mover and silo fixer, the tin has been replaced on top of the barn and it makes such a lovely picture, especially in the sun. Which we have had all day!

Often I speak of faith and grace and blessings in my own smartass way and I'm sure some tightass conservative just draws up in knots on a Sunday morning thinking about my kind of spirituality. How dare I not follow the rules? I am against war, for any reason other than homeland security as in "war on gangs" I don't like the reality of abortion, but I think that there's a kinder gentler way to approach the issue of birth control rather than shooting people. My world and yours needs to green up...and quick. Grow something and use the natural mulch that leaves such provide instead of paying some guy in a truck to dump pine in the yard. Support your local businesses and go to the farmer's market. It beats the hell out of going to megamart.

Anyway, I guess Daddy made it home with the buttercups he picked for Mama. She'll love 'em.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

baby steps

Ya'll know how I prowl all around the farm with my cheapass Kodak and post 'em everywhere and anywhere. I'm a lazy sort, so I usually load the dogs up in the old Camry and drive to where the action is. Imagine my surprise when three big fat John Deere tractors pulled up in just the right position with discs and all over in the new bean field. And damned if the batteries weren't dead in my camera. Since it's rained all freakin' night and day, I reckon they won't move before the sun comes out and I can snap a picture. Maybe with some asparagus in the foreground.

BG had church duty today since I was at the sawmill. Mama doesn't do "church in the weather" so she played hooky and Daddy sang some hymns at the top of his lungs with the men's choir. LP wasn't quite up to Mel's so they rode around and talked about life and what not while Mom listened to her book. Afterwards, she dropped by to get her blood drawn prior to an upcoming outpatient surgical procedure. I managed to get that done and swab her throat in between trips to catch the pneumatic tube that delivers all sorts of vile body fluids from you know where. Best thing I can say is that it's good exercise walking the half mile to shut the sonofabitch up.

I don't know about ya'll, but I just love it when a #1 seed goes down to some unknown little college like that one up in Iowa. I'm watching WV climb simply because my fairy blogmother is a fan from way back. Gotta love a gal who goes to reads to kids and goes to Bristol. And besides, she writes really good.

Here's a message for any of you who have ever shown up at a hospital emergency room with a sore throat or an infected cut that you failed to swipe with neosporin: The cost of healthcare in our country is directly proportional to your mentality when it comes to wellness and self care. You get shot or in a car wreck? We will smooth save your life. Heart attacks...gotcha covered. Bleeding ulcers or breech babies are routine. Just please, for the love of Big Ernie, don't show up looking for pain pills. We will have your number in a heartbeat and probably tell your mama, in spite of HIPPA.

There ain't no cure for stupid.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

almost paradise

That's exactly what my last two days were about. Since I tend to wilt during the extreme southern heat, spring is like the ONLY time I'm really perky. I spent my free time walking the yard, stopping to pinch and pull and rake to make room for the new. There are herbs planted in the back, shielded from the wind by the corner of my house. No asparagus yet, but hostas are peeking out, which always happens during march madness.

I was dreading work this morning because of a scheduled 7 hour downtime and was pleasantly surprised at how the whole thing flowed, for once. It can be tricky business to restart our interfaces in a situation like that and the IT support was great. Thanks Billy!

There has been so much wringing of hands and gloom and doom regarding my parents lately that I was tickled to hear that Daddy is buying a gator to putter around the farm. Why the heck we never thought of this before beats me but I say "go for it!" When Daddy is happy everybody's happy :) Ain't that right Mom?

I was amazed when walking barefoot in my yard at how soft moss is underfoot. The acorns? Not so much. Wasps are beginning to come out of the woodwork but they don't stand a chance with my "take no prisoners" attitude. Southern girls can kill a bug quicker than you can say bless their hearts. Snakes? Now that's a whole 'nother story.

Rain is on the way so I won't have to water what I planted. Ain't He good?


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

over the river and through the woods

Bubba stopped by and picked up me and the dogs to ride with him on a tour of the "new and improved" farm. I must say it's looking mighty landscaped and quite beautiful! The ugly trees are mostly gone making the pretty ones seem that much more special. Not a cow anywhere. We stopped to check out the view at a couple of our favorite spots like the dump and the highest ridge over that slough. He checked out the wood duck box but nobody was home. We ended up right where we on the lane. It's exactly what I needed, and Big Ernie knew that. Thanks.

I've got two days off and there are rumors that the sun is going to shine. Woooohoooooooooooooooooo!


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

heard it in a love song

Thanks to the Marshall Tucker band for today's title, and to that crack headed drummer who plays the good stuff from my favorite station. Nah..just kidding. He's a good guy....really! I've seen his band in various stages of formation, and they get better with each and every cast change. Mostly they play biker bars in the parking lot or by the water during the summer.

If the sun doesn't shine soon, I just might have a caniption fit to beat all of 'em. Not that it will do any good, but I'll feel emotionally cleansed and whatnot. Never underestimate the power of healthy anger when carefully channeled toward whomever pisses me off first. And yes...I've taken my happy pill.

I won't bore you with the details but we're steady transitioning toward the next chapter and I'm kinda smack in the middle with kids leaving and parents aging. BG shared a video with me that she saw at her conference and I was interested to read about the drug traffic on I75 from Fla through GA to TN, KY and WV. Florida pain clinics and a straight shot on the interstate result in these three states having the highest abuse rate of prescription drugs for any in the nation. What an honor! The dealers buy them for a buck or two down there then come on up in OUR 'hood to sell them for big money. I don't know about ya'll, but that just makes me want to pop a cork.

Remind me sometime to tell you the one about the Nigerian prince. You'll love it.

(to be continued)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

gloom and groom

It's overcast and cold again, a cruel reality following last week's spring teaser days. Being the "seize the moment" kind of gal that I am, it seems like a good opportunity to stay in jammies all day and play. There will be beer involved...and food. Other than that, maybe a movie or two. My brain needs a break from the real world, and my body needs some TLC in the form of total pampering with girlie things. It makes a world of difference in a smartass's attitude.

The on again off again roommate treated us to omelettes for breakfast, something that we will miss when he hits the road for work next week. BG is back from her business trip with lots of new ideas about how to make a difference, one life at a time. I love hearing about what she's learning, living vicariously through her out-of-the-box occupation while I slave away at the sawmill.

Tomorrow is breakfast at Mel's day and I picked up a little surprise for the precious waitress who remembers what we want without us telling her. She's never NOT been there, except for the one Sunday when she actually got to go to church instead of waiting tables. Mysterious ways, that Big Ernie.

I have not left the house all day, and do not intend to Lord willin' and the creek don't rise. If it does, I'll be the one you see paddling my own canoe through the swollen flood waters, keeping the faith as always ^j^

Thursday, March 11, 2010

walkin' the yard

One of my favorite things to do is to shuck off the scrubs and put on shorts for a stroll around the yard to see what's coming up. Beginning now, there will be something new every day for about four months. I planted a lot of it, but much of it was a gift from the former lady of this house, Mrs. Council. She had been dead for close to ten years when he finally moved out, so you can imagine what it looked like. Thus the six month home improvement marathon before we could even live here. We did a lot of cosmetic stuff but very little structurally, except for siding to cover up the bare wood. There has been one roof, two AC units and two wells but except for that, very little maintenance has been performed because...hey. I'm a girl and an old one at that. I know my limits and that includes not falling off a ladder to break something I might need like an arm.

Several high school friends of mine have indicated an interest in escaping real life getting away for a couple of days so we're planning a road trip soon. No beach for me this year because nobody graduated from college :) Thanks again, Mom. It was a splendid treat.

It's ladies night which means all my favorite shows are on straight in a row. I got a wild hair and ordered some of my all time favorite movies like The Big Chill, The Green Mile and The Jack Bull. Mom gave me a twice handed down player, and I'm good to go. I know, ya'll so wish you were me. I woke up during the thunderstorm last night, but drifted back over when it passed and the dogs never got up to go outside. Sweet! Maybe we can do a rerun on that tonight, ya think puppies?

Today's findings? Small green shoots of daylilies. No asparagus. Surprise lilies. Daffodils and a touch of forsythia. Things are greening up quick and I've yet to negotiate with my daddy and brother about using the mower this year.

Ya'll hang in there. It's almost Friday.


Monday, March 8, 2010

making a mess to clean one up

That's pretty much the state of how we've worked on this house over the years, exploring attic and basement for historical treasures and tossing out the dirt as we go. There was probably fifty pounds of RABBIT feed in the attic when I first got here. If I had a nickel for every item I've chunked out that attic window sliding across the back roof, I wouldn't even need a sugardaddy. Finally, after twenty odd years, it's time to decide what things are worth keeping and what needs to go to the next firepile. Most of what's left is antique furniture in need of some TLC and gardening tools. My legacy :)

The first daffodil bloomed on it's very own yesterday afternoon and now there's a whole bouquet. It's nice to see people out walking the dog and such, shaking off winter like bears out of hibernation. On the drive home, I waved at the farmer on his tractor busting up the dirt and loving it. I bet they get really bored in the winter. I know I do.

Things are stabilizing...I can feel the spiritual strength that comes from knowing that others are praying for you and your family. And something that all the money on Wall Street in China can't buy. Helps me to keep the faith. Here's a big shout-out to my cousin Debbie T who came in for a visit today. She says that reading about the lane just makes her happy. I know what she means.


Sunday, March 7, 2010

walk a mile in my shoes

That's exactly the distance from the end of my driveway to the main road. The dogs love to walk it with us and dig up critters in the soft dirt of the ditchbanks. Heading out with my favorite rock station for company, we pranced on down the pretending to be Stevie Nicks and them just being dogs. Right at the entrance to the dairy barn they found this bloody blob , probably exactly what those two hawks were circling for, and proceeded to chow down. I almost threw up breakfast from Mel's right then and there. I can't take that side of nature, ya'll.

Meanwhile, the ladybugs are making a comeback along with a stray fly or two since the doors have been wide open for two days and the screens have holes in them. life :) The garden has been burned off but not tilled yet. That will come after this week's rain. It's a full five days of early to bed early to rise for this old smartass before another day of piddle. Sometimes I feel a little sorry for people who have everything they need financially because it's so easy to forget about the value of simple things. I have a huge admiration for those who use their wealth to help others who are not as fortunate, even if there's not a tax break. I caught an interesting interview with a couple of senators on Tv this morning and it gave me hope that maybe there are those out there who can and will make a difference in Congress if only they'll let go of that stupid party stuff and think about the people who elect them. Why do we, as a nation, continue to re-hash the same issues over and over again and never fix them? Because somebody is making money. Take healthcare, for instance. The corruption and greed of insurance and pharmaceutical companies is enough to make Jesus as mad as when he flipped over those tables in the temple. I'm just saying.

There is all sorts of heavy machinery out here draining ponds and moving dirt and cutting trees preparing for crop '10. As the landscape and priorities change, so does my mood concerning living here. Times they are a'changing. I suppose it is a labor of love for my brother, and I think it makes him sad as well. See: don't own can't defend clause in the book of life.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

past and present

BG and her best friend are out shopping for bridesmaid dresses will be her first time to be the maid of honor :) These are the two who snuck out of our house at 13 and came home to the law sitting on the couch. Ha...busted! I had to be at work at six so after the 1:30 AM phone call I never went back to bed. One of her friends was just calling out of the blue, and I wondered why she didn't answer so I went to check it out. They were gone and had left body shapes under the covers with pillows just like I did at that age. Later that day we all went to see Jesus dragging the cross down the center aisle at church for the Living Last Supper and none of us had a dry eye. I wouldn't go back to having a child for ten brazillion dollars. I like their adult selves too much.

BG and I were talking the other day about how she worked the graveyard shift at the hotel and commuted to college during the day. It's all a big blur to both of us because times were so tough then. Now a college graduate about to begin work on a masters degree, she is working her way into a very successful career in social work. There's no money yet...BUT. That will come. Right now the focus is on changing things one baby step at a time. She is sooooooooo my kid.

The chores are done and the sun is shining. Sounds like time to get out there with nature and run amok. There will be pictures, of course.

Have a glorious weekend ya'll.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

the weight of the world

When I am stressed or sick, the whole thing settles in one of two my shoulders or with belly troubles. This past week I've been working diligently with a TENS unit to loosen up a trapped nerve in the right shoulder. I got a little hands on help with that yesterday afternoon and today I am SORE. My right arm was jerking involuntarily when somebody would touch just the right spot beneath the shoulder blade. It made for great fun at work! Two of my co-workers helped me out with their own special techniques. We are now at the naproxen and ice stage of treatment and I think it will all be good if I can limit computer use. No problem. I'm too tired to deal with it after tapping out numbers and right justifies and enter enters all day at the sawmill. Thank God the interfaces carry all those numbers across from the analyzers to the IT system. When it's down, we do things the hard way with paper and enter it all later. Talk about FUN!

It's still too cold for the daffodils to open up but they're sitting there not so patiently waiting for a sunny day with no breeze and a temp of fiftysomething, like what is predicted for our weekend on the lane. The cattle are being moved together slowly, as a herd, heading to auction in a week or so. You have to start early with that sort of thing, and Bubba's right on top of it. I wish I had half of his business and organizational talent. He can grow an idea like nobody I've ever seen.

Seems like everybody's got some sort of drama to deal with these days which is just life. I tend to avoid those who perpetuate it and get off playing it because life is just too short to sweat the small stuff. And it's all small, really. Like Annie sings " The sun will come up tooooomorroww!"

Ya'll smile. And call your mother ^j^

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

the ladybug massacre

I sincerely hope that the opposite of the ladybug axiom is not true because there are literally hundreds of dead ones around here. And plenty of live ones too. It happens every winter, a subtle reminder that spring is on the way but not here just yet. I've noticed a shift in the seasons this past year or two with a return to more "seasonal" temps. Normally by this time of the year West Tennessee has had at least one tornado come roaring across the Mighty Mississippi. One of the worst we ever had was in January and it flattened my friend's home church in downtown Halls. The building committee took the shards of stained glass windows and made wind chimes from them to help finance the new building! Mine are dusty, but still tinkling proudly in the doorway.

The washer and dryer are going non-stop in an attempt to get to the bottom of the pile, if only for one day. I have new teeth and the pap smear is history. It's a really odd feeling losing a week like I did from being sick. I kept going and managed to function, but I couldn't tell you anything about what I did. It's a total blur. I reckon that's Big Ernie's way of protecting the weary and ill :)

I stayed away from my parents during that time because Lord knows they don't need the epizootie or anything. We visited yesterday and today a bit . Mom has a new computer aided viewer to play with to see if she can read the church newsletter. Baby steps, for sure. And lots of wheely whirly whankum. Daddy's just focused on the menu at Aunt Bea's and his TV.

My workweek is almost half over and I've been off for two days. Sometimes it's nice to work a weekend just to get to play when everybody else is hard at it! Ya'll be careful out there. And keep the faith ^j^