Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Learning How To Walk

Actually, I'm RE-learning how to walk...correctly. And it isn't as easy as it sounds! My natural tendency is to protect that "new" knee by landing on it bent. Which is not good. But it's scary pushing it back and locking it when you step! It feels like I have no control and it's just going to fly back without stopping. It's the quad muscle that needs some serious strengthening. Where my muscle tone went, I just don't know. Before surgery, I attended some really tough spinning classes and I had great muscle tone. But it's gone AWOL. So I'm taking baby steps again...and pushing that knee back.

Today's therapy session was really pretty good. A different physical therapist was there to monitor my activities and he gave me lots of good advice. And pushed me hard! But that's all good, because I achieved 123 degrees bending of my knee. The next goal-130. Ouch. I'll get there eventually. :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

A Shopping Date

Today we did something different. Tommy and I spent the day together, without kids! Since he has off until after the New Year, and I am walking well, we decided to go shopping. After dropping Kevin off at school, we went to Target. Bought a few presents and headed to the other anchor store of the mall, Sears. Bought a few presents there too...and priced refrigerators. (Our fridge is on its last leg. It sounds like someone drilling when the compressor goes on. We had the repairman out and American Home Shield decided that they will pay what it would cost to repair it, over $600, if we want to replace it.) We really liked a 26 Sq ft. side by side by Whirlpool, but we didn't buy it yet. (Have to shop around!) Then it was time for a little rest, and treat, at Starbucks. Yum...I love their passion iced tea! Finally, it was time to head on over to the biggest and most dreaded mall. Found a spot close to the elevators at Penney's. Struck out on a suit for Tommy and new lampshades, but we did buy a few other gifts. Next, we drove over to the furniture place, Comeaux's. We're still trying to get the coffee table that we ordered. Went upstairs and drooled over the piece I want to buy next to act as our TV stand. (It's actually a media chest that goes with a bedroom set, but it's GORGEOUS and would be the piece de resistance in our family room!) Then it was time for lunch. Like a real date! Just the two of us. Adult only conversation. It was wonderful. After lunch we headed BACK to the mall and went to my favorite smelling place...Hollister's. LOL! I LOVE their fragrances. Bought a couple things there, and a GC for my niece. Then, before you know it, it was time to pick up Kevin from school! Where did the time go? Still, it was a very productive day. Besides, doing the dreaded chore of Christmas shopping is so much better when you can share the task. :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Weirdest Thing

My left leg is now at LEAST a half inch (maybe an inch!) longer than the right! First, I thought that the difference could be attributed to the large amount of swelling or that maybe the joint had to "settle" in place or something. But now I think I need to mention it to the orthopedist. Not that there's anything to be done about it (except maybe a riser in the other shoe). Of course, it COULD be evened out when I have the next knee done, but THAT'S not happening anytime soon. One day...but not now. Standing in church yesterday, I was trying to figure out just what the difference was between my limbs. I'd stand straight on the "new" knee and raise up on the other toe until my hips felt "even". It seemed like I had to flex those toes quite a bit to get to the same level. I should have been paying more attention to Mass, but this was really intriguing me how different these two legs were since surgery. LOL! When I go to see the doctor about the rash (which is finally showing signs of receding), I'll have to remember to mention this to him.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

2 steps forward, 1 step back

That's how it feels. I'll be doing great one day, working through the PT and seeing improvement, then BAM. Seems like mornings are best. I guess it's because the leg has rested all night and swelling is decreased (wearing an ace wrap to bed). Also, I usually take a pain pill in the AM to help with the backache that I wake up with. I try to sleep on my back with the leg stretched out to prevent scar tissue from forming that will hinder straightening of the knee. Inevitably I end up on my side with the knee bent...but I try. So, in the morning, I feel like super woman. By mid afternoon, not so much. When I told the PA that I was trying to cut back on the pain meds, she actually encouraged me to continue them as needed, saying that less than a month post-op, it still makes good sense to take them. Sounds good to me. And it's sure better than being miserable. Spacing them out between driving duties next week will be the trick. Although they don't make me loopy, it'd rather not have them in my system when bringing Kevin to school or picking him up. I'll refrain from taking one until AFTER I drop him at school and return home, and then not take another until after I get him home in the PM. Should work.

A new complication. Day nine of my Bactrim Rx (prescribed at my first visit post-op) I developed a rash. Minor at first, it seemed to concentrate around the inside of my left (replaced) knee and thigh. By the next day, it was more or less everywhere...most notably on the stomach and back, a little bit on the other leg. And my left foot had this itch that was driving me crazy. So now I have an appt. with the Dr. for Monday. Gosh, I hope this rash is gone by then, but I've read that antibiotic-induced rashes can last a week! Sure hope the itchy foot syndrome doesn't last that long. I took an Allegra for the itch and it seemed to help. And icing the foot after icing the knee also gives some relief.

Today, 21 days post-op, I'm going to try to attend Mass. The biggest hurdle is to find something to wear! Something that will fit over my ace-wrapped leg...ugh. I tried on one of my baggiest jeans yesterday and think they just might work. But will I be able to sit comfortably in them with my big knee??? We'll see.

Ooooo...most happy that I've found a decent PT group for my outpatient visits! Initially, when I called our insurance company, they were giving me names of small "hole-in-the-wall" PT operations. You know...a single physical therapist hangs out his/her shingle and takes patients. NOT what I want! I want a GYM! A GROUP of PTs and PTAs! A WELL-KNOWN group! When I went through the list myself, I found it. Not as close to my house as the others, but I remember picking my Dad up from PT at this place a couple of times. It was nice. Yeah! So Monday should begin a new part of my adventure, outpatient physical therapy.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Baby Steps

Not quite 3 weeks and I've graduated to a cane. (Actually, I've been walking short distances around the house without it.) Three times a week, the PTA comes to the house and pushs me with harder and harder exercises. She keeps adding more too...to the point that I need at least 30-45 minutes to do everything. And I'm supposed to do them 2-3 times a day. Whew. The good news is that I've reached 0 degree straight and 110 degrees bent.

Scar is looking better, but the knee is still HOT and tender, especially on the inside. The bruised feeling on the back of my thigh has not gone away yet. But the biggest problem is the hypersensitivity of my lower calf. Yikes. I can't stand anything to tough it. We've been having COLD weather (freezing night-time temperatures) and yet I wear shorts. To help with the swelling (and keep it warm) I wrap an ace bandage from ankle to above the knee. And then I can cover with a blanket. But if that ace slips....eeeek. Finally making some headway with the swelling. Yesterday for the first time, I actually had an ankle on the left leg.

I'll be discharged from home health and home physical therapy over the weekend. And then it's off to PT on my own. I hope I can find some pants or jeans that fit loosely enough over that leg! I'll try driving this weekend. Funny thing-Kevin doesn't want to be in the car with me the first time I drive...as if I've forgotten how. LOL!

Still a bit of pain towards the end of the day. And back pain in the morning. That should resolve itself when I can sleep comfortably on my side with my legs drawn up...my favorite way to sleep. Meanwhile, I see lots of hours on the clock. Sometimes it's Tommy's snoring that keeps me from falling asleep, but it's also the uncomfortableness of my knee. Baby steps.

Going back to the doctor's office tomorrow to meet with the physician's assistant. I have to remember to ask about this irritating discrepancy in the length of my legs since surgery. I might need a lift in one shoe to even things out...because I'm not having the other knee done anytime soon!

Friday, December 3, 2010


I'm dusting the cobwebs off of this blog to record my progress after Total Knee Replacement surgery. This is day 14. There's light at the end of the tunnel. Wish I had thought of blogging about this sooner, because I'm sure to forget a lot of what I've gone through. I think the mind does that to protect itself, because a vivid memory of those first few days would probably discourage me from ever having the second knee done.

What I remember:
Day 1-Woke up in recovery area. Not in pain. A bit later I tell the nurse that I feel bad...VERY bad. She asks if I'm nauseous. I don't know...feeling worse by the second. She hands me a container in case I get sick. Next thing I know, there are twenty people around me, calling my name, getting ready to "bag" me. I dropped the container and passed out. Heart rate dropped to 20 bpm. Thankfully I came back on my own, but that was scary, very scary. Once more I had that bad, bad feeling and my heart rate began to drop, but again I recovered on my own. These events caused me to be placed in a room on the telemetry unit, where my heart rate was monitored constantly.

Anesthesiologist thought that perhaps it was the nerve block meds that were causing the problem, so it was discontinued. They were still able to manage my pain pretty well without it.

Day 2-Now, I had another problem. Every time I would exert myself in the least (like sit on side of the bed or stand up with PT) my heart rate would jump to 150 and up. This would cause the nurses to come running to check on me. And I was tired...very, very tired. Turns out I had lost a lot of blood during surgery. A normal occurrence with knee replacement.

Days 3 & 4-Working with PT, learned to walk with a walker. Knee extremely swollen. Drainage normal. Still tired and hematocrit not rising. (Duh...with all the fluids I was receiving, it would stand to reason!)

Finally (and it took 4 days to decide this), it was determined that I needed two replacement units of blood. Since receiving blood is not without its own risks, they try not to have to resort to it. But after taking iron pills for three days, and then off the IV, hematocrit was the same. (Before surgery around 38. After surgery dropping to low 20s.)

Day 5-Going home. Took an ungodly amount of time to actually get a wheelchair and cart to take me out. But what a relief. Home at last. And I'm sure Tommy was even more relieved as he had spent each night and every day with me. We both relished being able to sleep in our own bed, sleep being a misnomer for me. I would see every hour on the clock. Not used to sleeping on my back, keeping my knee straight, I was MOST uncomfortable.

Day 6-Home health nurse, followed by PT. Gave myself my first Lovenox injection (to be given each day for 20 days to prevent blood clots). Later that evening, the bruising on my leg looked so much worse! Heel to thigh bruising. I called the nurse and asked for her advice. She didn't remember seeing that much bruising earlier, so off we went...to the ER...just to make sure everything was OK. After some blood work, they determined that it was a normal (albeit more pronounced than usual) result of the surgery. Blood that had leaked into the tissues was spreading out just underneath the skin of my thigh and calf.

Thanksgiving Day-Tommy cooked a turkey, brought it to my parents' house where the family was gathering, and brought us back the works. Yum! Probably one of the first times I have been hungry since surgery. My appetite was back.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

At The Car Wash

Ever wonder what's on a 10 year old kid's bucket list? Well, one day a couple of months ago, Kevin tells me, "Mom, do you know what I REALLY want to do one day?" I had no idea. Go to a favorite band's live concert performance? Vacation in Walt Disney World? Ride some fantastical roller coaster? "What, Kevin?" I ask. "I want to go through a car wash!" he answers. WHAT?! A car wash?! How has he not experienced this? It boggles my mind...both that he has never been through an automated car wash...and that it stands out for him as something not to be missed. LOL! So, a few days later we hop into Julie's dirty car and go. I had to take pictures of this momentous occasion and memorialize them on a scrapbook page:

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Not Again!

Another online scrapbook supply store is closing its doors. :(

What to do...what to do? How do I proceed with another DT position eliminated? Without a product to promote or technique to teach, I don't know where to begin! OK...hmmm...maybe with those hundreds of unscrapped photos? Heh-heh-heh.

Without direction, it's sometimes hard to decided what or how to scrap a photo. But these new papers from The Girls' Paperie were enough to fuel my creativity and I finally scrapped these photos from Brendan's high school graduation...May of last year. Mixing things up is my favorite way to scrap, so I was happy to find a use for some of my really old stash in the process. Those ancient letters from Making Memories began my love for chipboard. :D

If there could be a bright side to a store's closing, it would be that Serendipity Scrapbooks is now offering great discounts on remaining merchandise. Check it out HERE.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Oil in the Gulf

A widget for viewing in real time the disaster at the bottom of the gulf:

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Retro TV

"Knock it off!" Wally would say to a bothersome little brother whose favorite expression was "Swell!"

Can you guess the show?

Yep...Leave It To Beaver, a favorite of mine from "back in the day".

The weekend of May 21-23, travel back in time with the Serendipity Scrapbooks DT as we host our next cyber crop. There will be games and challenges inspired by our favorite retro TV shows and commercials. Two pre-crop challenges are already posted. Hop on over to The Serendipity Show and check them out!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

May Kit Layouts

It was such a pleasure to work with Serendipity's May "I Deserve It All" scrapbooking kit. The colors of the Crate Paper and My Mind's Eye papers are so versatile and there are embellishments galore. My favorite is the plethora of chipboard, but a close second is the really cool silk-like flower trim...in my favorite color!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Treme-a New Orleans neighborhood; an HBO TV series; pronounced with 2 syllables, accent on the second "e", which sounds like a long "a". First "e" is short. Got it?!

Always a little skeptical about TV shows and movies that attempt to depict New Orleans, I was REALLY wary of this one, set in the early post Katrina landscape. But then I watched the 2 hour premiere. Not bad. The accents don't have me cringing...too much. Now that they've gotten a Jazz Funeral out of the way, an episode about voo-doo will complete the ridiculous stereotype, and they can get on with the good drama. Hahaha. Maybe it will be a good series. Time will tell.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Monkey Business

We took advantage of the nice weather during Kevin's week off after Easter and visited the zoo...twice! Our first visit included a trek past Monkey Hill, through the Cajun exhibit and on to Jaguar Jungle, and concluded with lunch and ice cold drinks at the cafe. On our second day, we arrived just in time for the elephant show! We also got a rare treat of seeing the gorillas active after receiving a few treats from their keepers.

But the cutest thing ever was getting to see Menari, the baby orangutan!

Here's her dad, Berani, the escape artist who no longer gets to play with t-shirts in the exhibit. LOL!

These two monkeys were pretty cute too.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Kit Reveal

As the Serendipity Scrapbooks April kits go up today, the gallery is hopping with design team examples. I had the pleasure of working with the Altered Kit this month, which included the unique designer Star album of quality press board from Kaisercraft. It was a great backdrop for the photos and story of our Saints' run to and through Superbowl XXIV to emerge as champs!

Here are a few photos of my Believe album:

Four more layouts were created with the April Altered kit contents and this is my favorite. Layering an assortment of colorful strips on a white background looks downright beachy! I'm already beginning to anticipate our days in the sand.

Check out the Serendipity Kits Gallery for more projects. I find it amazing how each person creates with the same supplies, such unique and inspiring works!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Cluck, Cluck

It was a busy time, but I was able to eek out a few minutes (or hours) to complete Susan Stringfellow's Poultry Recipe Challenge at the Taste of Serendipity Crop. These were the necessary ingredients:

A Pinch of Flour--use at least one flower
2 T. of Spices--measure out 2 T. of buttons (It's more than you think!)
Chicken--paper piece the chicken presented HERE!

These photos of our post-parade gumbo were perfect! After all, chicken is a primary ingredient of CHICKEN and andouille sausage gumbo. :)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My Lists (Collected)

Lists are my friends. I make them, I add to them, I check them off, and I rewrite them. I have lists for everything!

Do you have an endless assortment of lists in your purse, on your refrigerator, or laying around on the kitchen table or counter? If you're a list maker like me, you do! I love my lists, but wanted a way to keep them together...an attractive way if possible. With a little mini notebook/assignment pad I can write my daily/weekly to-do list, grocery list, etc. and not lose them to the depths of my purse or worse. When one list is done, I can tear it out and throw it away, but the others stay put. And with a little help from my scrapbook supplies, my List Keeper is an interesting piece of collage art as well!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

My Emeril Live! Challenge

BAM! He’s done it again. On the strip in Las Vegas, at one of Emeril’s newest ventures, Lagasse’s Stadium, the famed chef has taken the average steak sandwich and kicked it up a notch. Known as the BAM’wich, it’s a mouthwatering 8 oz. of grilled prime sirloin on homemade herb focaccia, dressed with blue cheese slaw, balsamic braised red onions and Emeril’s steak sauce. YUM!

Your challenge is to make a BAM’wich as part of your layout design. Using at least 8 strips of patterned paper (each with a different design), layer them like a stacked sandwich. Tear or cut with deco scissors, space evenly or overlap, cut all the same or of varying lengths, pen-stitch or ink edges…anything goes, as long as the papers are horizontal (not vertical) and there are at least 8 different designs.

Then, just as the “holy trinity” of Cajun cuisine, bell pepper, onion, and celery make up the foundation for great Louisiana classics such as gumbo, jambalaya and étouffée, you will be required to use three of my favorite embellishments on your page: a tag, a ticket, and a journaling spot. You can use pre-made items or stamp, print, cut and make your own.

Additional embellishments are allowed, but each page must have 8 paper strips, a tag, a ticket, and a journaling spot.

Here is my page. I chose papers with colors that coordinated with those in my photo…the yellow, brown, orange, and green of the grass, with a bit of blue and white to compliment my son’s jersey. I tore one paper, cut others varying lengths and widths, and layered haphazardly underneath my photo, adding the tag, journaling spot, ticket along with a couple of leaf embellishments. The title was drawn in paint, then cut and glued directly to the picture. BAM! I love it!

Sweet Taste of Serendipity

Friday marks the start of The Sweet Taste of Serendipity online crop, a virtual crop with challenges and throw-downs inspired by The Food Network and our favorite food celebrities. As Rachel Ray would say...YUMMO! The fun and games, challenges and blue light specials will continue throughout the weekend. I wonder who will be crowned the next Top Chef?!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Typical Tuesday

This is what I do on Tuesdays. Along with a number of other moms whose son(s) attend(ed) Jesuit High School, I paint yard signs that are sold to the students/parents/grandparents of the school. The bluejay mascot is called "Jayson", and he comes in many different outfits/poses...band, cross country and track, wrestling, football, lacrosse, swimming, baseball, ROTC, golf, soccer, rugby, or diploma in hand wearing a graduation cap. It's a relaxing way to spend the day, and a great way to keep up with school gossip! :)

While I contemplated getting a cross-country Jayson for Christopher, I decided to go with the "all-purpose" pose instead.

Cute little fellow!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Map Envelopes

Make your own Map Envelope! Isn't this cool?! You enter an address or location and Google Maps finds it for you and inserts the image into an envelope template. Just print, cut out, and glue your custom envelope.

For this envelope, I didn't even need an address. I typed in Cafe Du Monde, New Orleans and there it was...making me hungry! The only thing cooler would be the capability to zoom in closer and smell the beignets. Oh well...technology has to catch up to my ideas! ;)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Best Biscotti

Ever since discovering this recipe for almond biscotti, I can't let a week (or half a week) go by without whipping up a batch. It is easy, uses ingredients that I have on hand, and doesn't break your teeth when you bite into them the next day. It makes a fair amount but disappears rather quickly in this house. Although I can't imagine a better taste, I might try dipping them in chocolate the next time I bake a batch.

Here is the recipe from Under A Blue Moon:

Almond Biscotti

1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar + 1 Tbsp.
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chopped almonds
Milk (to brush over the top)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees farenheit.

Cream the butter and 1 cup of sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs slowly and mix well. Add the extracts.

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in separate bowl (tip: use a whisk to combine).

Add flour mixture slowly to the butter/sugar mixture until combined. The dough will be sticky. Add the chopped almonds.

Using a spatula, spread the dough onto a baking pan that has been lined with either a Sil-Pat or a piece of greased foil. You can either make two narrower rectangles or one wider one. Once you have the general shape, wet your hands and smooth down the dough.

Brush with milk and sprinkle the reserved tablespoon of sugar over the top.

Bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and slide the Sil-Pat or foil, with the biscotti on it, onto a cooling rack. Turn the oven down to 300 degrees farenheit.

Cut biscotti into 1/2" wide strips and return, cut side down, to the baking pan (no Sil-Pat or foil needed at this stage). Bake for 10 minutes then flip over and bake for another 10 minutes.

Remove from oven and cool on the cookie sheet. Enjoy!

HOS Week 3

The House of Serendipity Week 3 challenge presented participants with a choice of two sketches on which to base their page. I chose the one below...

...and scrapped a photo of Brendan and his friends, gathered for a picture before one of his last Brother Martin dances.

Homecoming maybe? I'll have to ask him. (I don't even remember the name of the girl!) But his buds are Michael (with their friend Mia) and Josh (with girlfriend Sara). Wow...I know everyone but the girl that my son is taking to the dance!

Monday, March 15, 2010

POTD Puttered Out

I didn't even make it a month. Life just gets in the way of taking pictures sometimes! But that first week of photos made it onto a scrapbook page giving a glimpse into the first 7 days of the New Year:

This was also my House of Serendipity Week 2 Challenge entry. I chose the color red and worked it into parts of my page, namely the photo mats. Gathering the hodge-podge of lettering for the P, O, T, and D reminded me of how much fun it is to create these mixed up titles. They add so much interest to a page, especially when the title is so short.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

March Kit Reveal

The groundhog may have seen his shadow, but the colors and patterns of the March Serendipity Kit have me thinking spring! These were perfect papers for scrapping a class field trip to Red Bluff Farm,one of the best field trips I have ever attended with my son. There was so much to do...all hands-on. He planted that little seed and looks like he is expecting it to grow right away! :)

Pineapples are a traditional symbol of hospitality, so I created one as an embellishment for this layout about our porch redo. A Basic Grey paper was the perfect base. With stitching between the diamonds and tiny tiles in their centers, it came alive.

This page uses one of Serendipity's brand new papers for the background. The Rooftop Greenhouse papers compliment the Basic Grey collection perfectly. Directions for the ruffle flower can be found in Serendipity's Technique Forum.

On my Garden Journal, I did a little something different with the lace cardstock...turned it over and used it wrong side up! (The white contrasted better with the background paper.) Then I had way too much fun littering the spiral with all sorts of cute stuff...a birds nest with eggs, buttons, butterfly, and canvas tag.

This turned out to be my favorite project from the March kit...and it's mostly made with leftover pieces of patterned papers from the other pages. Can you see the bird peeking out from the lace cardstock?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

HOS Challenge #1

The House of Serendipity Event is in full swing, with the first challenge distributed to participants according to their answer to the following question:

What statement below best describes you.....

A- When it comes to scrapping I am well organized and have to have everything in its place at all times including my house and laundry.
B- My house is a disaster my kids need food but you will find me in my scrap room! Anyway isn't that what pop tarts are for!
C- Its been awhile since I scrapped and I still can't find my desk!
D- Scrapping????I just like to collect pretty paper.

I answered B and was given the following challenge..."to use purple in a layout". Judging by the number of pages with purple flooding the gallery recently, there are a lot of pop-tart popping kids out there. Hahahaha!

Shuffling through my paper stash, there's not a lot of purple to be found, and most had to do with Halloween, so that's where I went with it:

The HOS Event is brought to you by these fine manufacturers:

KiKi Art-a fairly new eco-friendly company with bling, chipboard, flocked papers, fun tape, and more.

Altered Pages-your one-stop shop for all your altered art needs, they carry an amazing array of vintage images and unique findings.

Cosmo Cricket-patterned paper collections, ribbon, blackboard, and the coolest spinner cards among other things.

Sassafras Lass
-eye-catching patterns and trend-setting colors, their products are amazing!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Lombardi Gras

After the trophy and team were honored by the city with their own parade on Dat! Tuesday, the Tuesday before FAT Tuesday, the moniker Lombardi Gras took over! Super Bowl MVP Drew Brees paraded as King of Bacchus. Coach Sean Payton joined the celebrity monarchs of Orpheus. Krewes everywhere paid homage to the Super Bowl champions and the new unofficial Saints anthem could be heard booming its bass up and down the parade routes. "Stand up and get crunk!" Mardi Gras was shaping up to be Saintsational! Like so many others, we donned our jerseys on Mardi Gras day, wearing them in place of costumes.

Those who did dress up in other attire often had a decidedly Saintly theme. Pigs Fly were one of the cutest groups inspired by these surreal happenings.

The Lombardi Gras "football heads" were another.

Think if I put Kevin's name on the season ticket list that maybe his kids or grandkids might benefit.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Bless You Boys!

Pigs have flown.
Hell has frozen over.
The Saints are going to the Super Bowl.

All of a sudden, there's so much to do.
We need flags for the cars. And car paint too.

When planning the food, we know we'll need these...
tons of cookies, with Fleur-de-lis!

Get out the jerseys, the scarves and the hats.
I wish we had one of those "Bring the Wood" bats.

It's time for the game. No one can sit still.
At halftime we're nervous. They can do it. They will!

An onside kick? What an ingenious play!
If they pull this out, it will be such a day!

The seconds tick down and our Saints are on top.
Listen outside as the fireworks pop!

We won!

The last minutes of the game are a blur. I'm not sure why? Maybe it's because I had my hands over my eyes...afraid to look? But when the final seconds ticked off the clock, pandemonium broke out everywhere. Phone lines were swamped. Outside...people far and wide whooping it up. Fireworks in the sky. Cars piling up at stop lights, their congratulatory honks echoing back and forth. As we neared downtown, traffic began to crawl. French Quarter exits from the interstate were blocked. The world was descending on the center of the city. We had to go too.

We exited at Canal St. Bumper to bumper traffic. Happy traffic. Kids hanging out of car windows, waving flags and umbrellas. We only made it a few blocks in before calling it quits, driving past the Superdome on our way to the I-10 onramp. Who would have believed it 4 1/2 years ago, when the roof tore open. The Saints, our home team, going to and WINNING the Super Bowl? These are the days!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

An Ordinary Day

A Team Player

For a little while now, I've been wandering the web, meandering through message boards and stores, trying to find an inspirational and welcoming new home on the internet. A few weeks ago, I found Serendipity Scrapbooks. And it just so happened that they had recently posted a design team call! So I got busy creating a couple of new pages, sent my application in for the team, and anxiously waited for word. Word came! I am happy to report that I was offered a position on the team, and can't wait to start "working" with my other very talented team members. Yippee!

Serendipity is a rocking place, with daily challenges, monthly contests, special event crops, and more. Join in the fun and sign up for the House of Serendipity Event. You won't believe where we're staying:

Edward, the butler, has been preparing the house and stocking the fridge with Chocolate and the bar with plenty of drinks to go around. Bo, the Pool Boy, has been cleaning the pool and hot tub and making sure that all there is plenty of tanning oil by the chairs so he can help the guest get a perfect tan. The house has everything that a lady could want!

I am so there! Won't you join me?!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Spread the Word

Are you drooling over all the new products being presented at the Winter CHA Show? Well, guess what! Products from Basic Grey, Cosmo Cricket, Sassafras Lass, Pink Paislee, and Tim Holtz are now available to pre order in the Serendipity Scrapbooks store!! And best of all, you can get 15% off these pre-orders by entering the code: Winterchagoodies in the code box at the very bottom of the shopping cart.

[Please review the info on how to order pre-ordered items. Also note that some papers and embellishments will be in future Serendipity kits. If a product line is slated for use in an upcoming kit, it will be mentioned on the main page for that line.]

HERE IS HOW YOU CAN WIN PRODUCT---- Post this on Facebook, Twitter it, blog on it and share on any board that doesn't have a store. Get your name entered into the Crop drawing for the Kit for each place you post, then link back HERE.

WINTER CHA 2010-Cosmo Cricket & Sassafras Lass Open thru Jan. 30th (Ships in February)
WINTER CHA 2010-Pink Paislee & Basic Grey Open thru Feb. 15th (Ships in March)

His Bucket List

Kevin: "Mom, do you know what I want to do?"
Me: "No. What do you want to do Kevin?"
Kevin: "I want to go through a car wash."
Me: "A car wash?"
Kevin: "Yeah, I've never been through one."
Me: [shocked silence]

How did that happen? In all his life, we have never taken him through a car wash!? Some kids yearn to see a professional football, basketball, or baseball game. Others desire the newest video game or gaming system. Others still will plead for tickets to see their favorite music star in concert. And what does Kevin want? To experience a car wash!

I remember when Laura was little, going through the "Big Bird car wash" was a favorite activity. (She named it after the lovable Sesame Street character whose feathers reminded her of the big plumes of cloth that whirled and scrubbed the car clean.)

So we did it. Julie's car had been showered with dirt when she parked in an area that was undergoing construction. It was in bad need of a bath. I grabbed my camera for this momentous occasion:

Looks like the ELMO Car Wash to me!

Monday, January 25, 2010


It was a great day for a birthday. The treats began after the 9:30 AM Mass with the Men's Club Donut breakfast. A favorite lunch was to follow, meatballs and spaghetti! Then the piece de resistance, the Saints defeating the Vikings for the NFC Championship and a trip to Miami for the Superbowl!

At some point during the 4th quarter, we stole a few minutes away from the game to celebrate Kevin's birthday with the most delicious King Cake from Randazzo's. No more single digits! He's ten years old!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What a Crock

First there was The Julie/Julia Project. In the book (which I am currently reading), Julie Powell gives herself a year to make every recipe in Julia Child's cookbook, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking".

365 days. 536 recipes. Did she succeed? I might just have to finish the book to know for sure, but I do know this. She succeeded in turning her cooking blog into a best-selling book, and that best-seller into a movie. Julie (and Julia's) style of cooking? Very odd French recipes. Extremely labor intensive. Not. For. Me.

Ahhh...but here's a cooking blog I find so much more appealing! In A Year of Slow Cooking Stephanie O'Dea resolves to use her crockpot EVERY... SINGLE... DAY in 2008 and shares both her recipes and her family's verdict. Dump everything in a pot and cook it all day. THAT'S my kind of cooking.

My cooking resolution: to expand my crock pot repertoire.

In 6 hours we're having beef stew.

Can't wait!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Party In The MIA!

It's going to be a long week until that NFC Championship Game on Sunday! But I believe!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Playing With Paper

Bits and Pieces

These are a few of my favorite things! Music, books, foreign films, paper arts, photography, family and travel. All done with a favorite color combo of red, black and kraft. And a few of my favorite supplies: pretty patterned paper, lace, and chipboard. I love the fleur-de-lis...and the scissors...and the "potty" person. Fun stuff.

And a few peeks at what I've been working on lately: