From dodging cows to dodging potholes

I’ve been driving since before my feet could reach the pedals. That’s the thing about country living – when there’s hay to be hauled, it’s all hands on deck. Daddy’s old farm trucks were always “granny” geared, so it didn’t matter that I couldn’t reach the pedals. Just dump the clutch, let it roll, steer toward the hay bales and don’t hit any cows.

Once my feet did reach the pedals, I became Daddy’s saving grace on many occasions. There were many afternoons I was sitting at the dining room table when I would see Daddy walking up the road, which meant only one thing. The tractor was stuck. By the time I moved out, I could have started my own Stuck-Tractor-Removal Service. Continue reading From dodging cows to dodging potholes


Sploots, Cheetos and a Corgi Butt

The trademark Corgi sploot

I have a steadfast rule: If you don’t poop outside or wipe your own butt, you can’t stay at my house. Thanks to Cheetos, our new four-legged child has not had a poop accident inside.

We have been on the waiting list for a Corgi for nearly a year when I unexpectedly learned one of my mom’s horse show friends had a litter ready to go. And it was after finals. And it was during the Christmas holidays. And we were both off work for four weeks. The timing was perfect.

We had already decided that because we were getting one of the Queen’s dogs, he had to have a pompous British name. And because I’ll never have a son to name after my dad, the puppy would have to have Harrison somewhere in the pompousness.

On December 13, we and Sir Waldorf Harrison Maupin, barn name Harry, made the six hour drive home to New Orleans from DeBerry, Texas, in the pouring rain.

I forgot that having a puppy is like having a 2-year-old kid except we can put him in the kennel for a few hours without facing repercussion of child protective services.

We are completely smitten with Sir Harry and the Corgi breed. We are all too familiar with the sploot now, and his personality is starting to really come out. From hot laps around the coffee table to pulling his toys out of the toy box, we could not be having a more fun time watching him “grow up.”

Housebreaking is even going smoothly – the secret is a kibble-size piece of a Cheeto every time he “gets busy” outside. It’s worked like a charm, though I think he’s got us figured out as he’ll do the minimum and come to me and ask for his prize.

We certainly broke Harry in during the first few weeks. Over Christmas in Pensacola, Fla., we smuggled him in and out of our hotel room in my big purse and he didn’t make a peep. Eddie’s niece carried him all over the house and even tried tuck him into her baby doll’s bed.

During New Year’s, he met horses and Weimeraners at my parents’ house. He even spent the night with my sister and 2-year-old niece. In her toddler dialect, Harry sounded more like Airey in a British accent.

During our first vet visit, the vet techs were fawning all over Harry. I told the Eddie if he ever kicks me out, he’s got the ultimate chick magnet. I am counting down until his last set of shots so we can visit the local dog parks and play fetch at the levee letting our Corgi fully Corg.

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You either attack Mardi Gras or you hide from it

So that was the advice of a friend from New Orleans. I spend a lot of time in the Big Easy, but have never been to Mardi Gras. I hate crowds (married to a cop too long). I hate parades (nothing but a traffic hassle). I hate people throwing things at me (bad experience as a nerd in P.E.).

But as a person who tries to experience everything life has to offer, I figured during this weekend’s trip – the last before Fat Tuesday – I had to go to at least one parade. We chose Endymion, one of the “super krewes”. Fortunately, I didn’t have to attack as the normal tourist. I joined my resident friends so parking was not a problem and we had a “home base” on the route for booze storage and a bathroom.

After securing the cooler, we found a spot on Canal Street. The photos show the progression of a Mardi Gras parade. Things started to get blurry when I got pelted in the eye with beads (my eye lid is still purple five days later) – and it wasn’t due to the injury.

The first rule – invest in a cooler with wheels.


Secure in our spot. I’m drinking the “c-minus” because of the first instance of alcohol abuse, aka Jack Daniels spillage, caused by another parade goer.


The crowd thickens just before parade time.


The floats are rolling. Let the fight for beads begin.


And we’re acquiring beads…


Then the selfies start to get interesting…


From the bathroom window of our home base – not sure if this was of the parade or the light pole.


Then beads can double as a shirt and you get a neon halo…


Then there’s the walk back to the vehicle… Thankfully, I had a driver.


And after that, things got so blurry I couldn’t document with photos.