New Years Eve Smoke Balls

Like kids, Peg and I have been slowly popping the fireworks I got her for Christmas; slowly building up to tonight's big backyard fireworks bash, that we are planning. I'm sure the neighbors will be busily adding to our display. We plan to ring in the new year with a bang!...several bangs, actually, and are expecting company tomorrow to feast on traditional Southern New Year goodies.

Tomorrow we are going to deep-fry another turkey, but the most important "gotta have"s are black eyed peas, cabbage, and cornbread. We will make the black-eyed peas steeped in Cajun spices and smoked ham hocks. The cabbage will be 'smothered' down with sauteed onions, again, our special Cajun spice and a local smoked sausage cut in slices. The cornbread will actually be what we call Mexican cornbread, made with chopped fried bacon, pickled jalepeno slices, whole corn, creamed corn and grated cheddar cheese. There'll be the usual assortment of snacks and drinks. Today Peg made lemon squares from the lemons in our yard, and brownies with pecans from our trees, not to mention yet another loaf of banana nut bread and orange nut bread. It sure is handy having all this fruit and nuts right out our back door.


Back Yard Cajun Fireworks

I try every year to buy Peg some fireworks. She grew up in upstate New York, and backyard fireworks have been out-lawed there for, like, forever. So she giggles like a school girl when we set off showers and candles and spinners etc., ya know; the backyard variety. Any ways, here's a video(remember we still learnin' the video camera) of some backyard fireworks fun.



Since I accidentally left my BRAND new expensive video camera and my regular camera way over in Alexandria yesterday(!!!), I have no pictures to post for you. I expect that Cappy, who gets off the boat tomorrow (hipporee!!), and I will meet up with cousin Larry someplace to retrieve them. Seeing as how I found this picture in my email box from cousin Meli, I guess I don't mind at all. Look at her beautiful children. How precious is this? They sure have grown since we last saw them. It doesn't seem like that long at all.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I know I did. All the kids called and said they loved their gifts. Son Joe was upset that his gifts hadn't gotten here, but the package came this morning. I went to pick up 'the boys'...the "Arky boys" at the kennel this afternoon. They musta been whooping it up the whole time they were there because they've slept since they've gotten home, and that's all they've done. Poor Mark's eyes look all red-rimmed and bloodshot, as if he'd cried the whole time. He's definitely a 'mommy's boy' and never lets me get out of his sight, so this last four days must have been very traumatic for him, even tho SparkyBear was there with him. The dogs and their 'dad' still have presents under the tree, so they'll open them tomorrow and take pictures on Cappy's camera.
Re-reading this, it sounds pretty bland, but I guess I'll go join 'the boys', I'm whooped, too. Stay tuned for more. Hi Aunt Gussie! I Love you, and it was sooo good hugging yore beautiful ol' neck.
P.S. Feel free to send us news...you are part of our world and we would be honored to share it here.
P.S.S. Since one of the Uncle's gifts from us got lost, then I left my cameras over there...I also misplaced the diamond cross necklace Sookie gave me, cried and cried and bawled my eyes out til I found it in my purse...cousin Larry had the nerve to ask, "You still got your drawers??" phhunny. Yes, I do. (I hadda check, after all that goings on, just to make sure...but as a matter of fact) yes, I do. ;-p


Merry Christmas 2007

This is, as close as possible, to the Christmas card we sent out this year. Because of printer problems, we didn't actually get to include the picture of the Madonna and Child. Cappy always comes up with the ideas for our cards so that all I have to do is draw them. I apologize that the top picture is crooked for some reason. I've tried correcting it, but only made it worse, so here she goes, just like she is.

Give Glory to God in the Highest
and Peace to His People on Earth.

God bless you at the Holidays, and through the year in store.God fill your life with all the Joys, that you are hoping for.God give you health and happiness, the Comfort of His Care.God Bless and keep you in His Love, ...that's our Christmas prayer.Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year,With our warmest thoughts and wishes,"Cappy and Pegody" Robin & Da Dawgs(SparkyBear, MarkyBear & Raleigh-Raleigh)

I'd also like to take the opportunity to post links to two of my most favorite Christmas songs:http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=jA9DmSfufSQand:http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=IAckfn8yiAQ


Christmas Cajun Cooking

Plans for Christmas are starting to come together, finally. I'm still baking, but want to bake a few things to mail to family or take with me to Alexandria, LA for a large gathering at Aunt Marguerite and Uncle Eugene's house. I think cousin Larry would actually faint if I showed up with some of the brownies I'm always promising to make for him. As it is, I have no idea about how many loaves of banana nut bread I've already made, since our bananas and pecans have been producing this Fall. As we 'speak', I have another loaf cooling it's heels on a rack, out there on the kitchen table. I promised that to son, Thom, up in western NY, so it'll be winging it's way in that direction tomorrow, along with a few oranges and lemons from off our trees.
Of course, Cappy, out on the boat always has something wonderful simmering away on the back burner as he's driving the boat. If he didn't put it together, then one of his crew has. The guys he has on there now with him are fantastic cooks. He's always 'braggin' on 'em', those guys. Last night, I went to meet the boat, and took them out their Christmas stockings. I sewed, among other things, stocking stuffers for each of them, which are big pot holders. They are about three sizes bigger than the ones bought in the stores. These guys have big paws, from throwing massive ropes around the timberheads, or working in the engine room. For the crew that will be on for Christmas I made more potholders for them, plus New Orleans Saints pillow cases, wrapped them and stuffed them in the stockings, too, then dumped in all kinds of candy, nuts from our yard, a toy, ...I forget what all, then topped them off with a big Satsuma orange. (and the promised 'lump of coal'...chocolate, of course...and a stern warning this time...well,...not too stern.)They each get a wrapped gift, as well, from under their scraggly little 'Charlie Brown' Christmas tree, which I also took with me last night, along with some sundry ornaments, which, handily, were on sale at Hobby Lobby.
When I pulled up at the fuel dock late last night, there were a couple of other boats, loading fuel as well, so Cappy and I had time to visit with a bunch of guys from those boats. Cappy told them that I had brought stockings for the guys on his boat. Dane, a captain from one of the other boats, said, "Oh noooooo!!!....I do NOT want to see you wearing stockings...trust me...fishnet is not a good look for you; it's cold...she shoulda brought you some long johns...the longer the better."
Cajuns. Then they always manage to bring food into most any conversation. They were talking about what they had cooked or were cooking, and how they cooked it. Although alligator is supposed to be a delicacy around these parts, Cappy's favorite is turtle. From wayyyyy back in the blog, there might be a story about squirrel stew that I couldn't get past my lips without my throat clenching shut. I'm sure it was very tasty, but ...just the thought. One time I overheard on the phone, Cappy and one of his guys talking about, "Awwww, look at the bunny rabbits frolicking over there in the tall grass...aren't they cute? Look...there's the mama, and how many babies she's got? Four? Five? Let's count." Then they started discussing which sauce goes best with rabbit. And, "If it's stewed, then, by all means, dumplings like Momma used to make...not the flat kind, but the big ol' fluffy 'cathead' dumplings". Uh...cat head?? Shhhh, I don't even wanna know.
Well, I found this link and, I'll tell you, this song had to have been written by a Cajun. Let's see what you think.


Trying to Get Things Accomplished.

Yesterday was crew change day out on the boat for Cappy's outfit. One guy got off the boat for Christmas and another got on. He never knows who the office is going to send out to replace his regular workers. Next week, for Christmas, it will be the same thing, so he'll have two temporary guys working for him.
He's having me make sure to bake some goodies and treats for the boys, no matter who's going to be there. So that's what I'm doing. Sewing and baking.
Today is our highly esteemed neighbor, Jude's birthday. We got him a little something, because they are always looking out for me, while Cappy is away. It's a wonderful thing to have neighbors like that. A sense of security. Jude's wife, Sonia, loves watching the crazy antics and goings on in our yard, by our dogs,outside her kitchen window. I don't always get to see the show, from inside our little house. She came over and told me she wishes she'd had their video camera handy the other day. Raleigh-Raleigh, who has taken up residence in the flowerbed, now wicked weed patch next to our front door, was sitting in the middle of the matted-down weeds, early one morning. I feel sorry for the poor guy, because, since he doesn't want to be in the house, and the spoiled Bichons stay in the house most of the time, he's left out there by himself and has to find ways to amuse himself. Sometimes I think he must get kind of lonely because I'll see him 'talking' and playing with the strangest things, such as candy wrappers that have blown into the yard, or his dog bones. Occasionally, SparkyBear and MarkyBear will go out and give him a little company or run around the yard with him; but only briefly. Well, on the day in question, Sonia said it was early and the sun was bright, casting a very dark shadow of Raleigh on the house next to him. He happened to notice his shadow and seemed delighted to have suddenly found himself in the presence of 'company'. I don't know what all he did that amused Sonia's attention, but she said he seemed thrilled to have another dog out there, sitting by him. Together, 'they' sat there and watched the world go by. At one point he put his paw up, in such a sweet way, to touch the other 'dog'. 'They' sat there for awhile longer, and much to our neighbor's delight, she saw Raleigh lean over and 'kiss' his new friend. Awwww. He really is a nice dog. Santa's helper got him some special toys for Christmas that might help keep him occupied and happy out there in the yard, when the sun is on the other side of the house, poor guy.
Speaking of Raleigh and elves and Cappy. I just love watching Cappy and Raleigh, made up like elves, dancing, so am bringing the link up here to the fore-front again, for those who haven't seen it or haven't waded through the labyrinth of posts we have written since we originally published it here on our blog. So...here ya go:


They Just Got So Excited, the Big Silly Boys

Well, that didn't last long. I took the 'boys'...the guys on the boat, their Christmas gifts last week. Cappy is still saving his to open Christmas morning. The other two got so excited, they made excuses why they had to open their gifts early, so I might as well show ya'll now. The one guy used to be a rodeo dude, and he's not all that interested in football, so I made him rodeo pillow cases and included a new pillow. I guess it was "too bulky and in the way" so he 'had' to open it now. Hmmm. He was all excited and said he loves it! The other 'kid' hasn't gotten Christmas or birthday gifts since he was 12, so we got him two gifts. He couldn't believe it. He kept fondling the wrappings and said since he figured out what one of them was, and "since Robert got to open his pillow cases early",he might as well go ahead and open it. Again...Hmmm. Cappy got him a very cool CD case, which will hold about 50 CD's. He really needed it, too, because he had a growing collection of CD's but no place to keep them. Cappy told him to hold off on opening the other gift from his 'den mother' (that would be me), so he would have something to open on Christmas morning. Later, when I talked with Cappy that same evening, he told me "Asa LOVES his new Saints quilt".

If I make another trip out there, it might be with Christmas stockings, and if they snoop around this time, they might find lumps of coal. (drat...knowing me, it'll be made of dark chocolate.) How could I be mad at these kids??


Quick Note Update or Much Ado 'bout Nuffin Much

Our daughter-in-law, Jessica sent us this link, which inspired me to 'elf' cappy, me and the dawgs. From left to right on this link, you'll see Jessica, son Joe, our granddaughter, Ashley and our grandson, Zachary. http://www.elfyourself.com/?id=1242375697 Too much fun!!
I'm getting ready to take SparkyBear to the vet. I usually only give the dogs a bath about every two weeks. When I was giving him and Mark their bathes last night, I removed the Invisible Fence collar, I was shocked and horrified to find an HUGE three and a half inch gash, about an inch high, all bloodied along his throat and there's even dried blood clumps! I don't know how deep it is, but it looks BAD. I couldn't see it before this because of all the fur and curls around his neck. I thought the problem was with his mouth, all this time, but couldn't see anything wrong with his teeth. I'm waiting for the Vet to open. I was going to take him there today anyhow. Now I'm just sick about it...I couldn't fall asleep til around three this morning.
The collar had gotten taken off when the kids were here, so the little hot shot took off down the street after a loping long-eared basset hound, who happened to pass by. I had the kids put the collar back on post haste. I'll keep you posted....gotta run and get this taken care of NOW. (jingle bells, jingle bells...)
Ok, all is calm, all is bright.
Cappy and I were really worried. It seems that, like the rest of us, SparkyBear had gained weight, making the collar tight in the last two weeks, and he's got an allergy to the contacts on the electric battery thingy. Dr. Crawford said she was surprised he hadn't shown symptoms way before this. Once she shaved his throat, she could see the situation an whole lot better and said she's seen worse. No consolation...it was pretty darned ugly. First, it got irritated from the allergy, then abrasion, or friction from being tight caused the bleeding. At least it wasn't deep, as I had feared, but was afraid to look. So, now I'll just hook the battery alarm to his old loose collar, and the "BEEP" he hears should be enough to stop him from meandering down the street after any other attractive ...uh...girl dog, he might see sashaying down our street.

At least SparkyBear got to see baby kitties
at the vet's, so to him the trip wasn't a total loss.


Behind the Scenes Here & Problem with our Email Thingy

This year we opted to get our Christmas cards printed professionally, because when the computer 'went down' a few months ago, it took the printer with it. Tho the printer now works, it just aint not doin' all that great. I went to Thibodaux and picked up the cards, but I still have a couple of things I want to print on the cards before I send them out. (You know...there's still time if you'd like us to send you one of our cards, free of charge...just because it's our gift...just send us your address at our email: cappy_and_pegody@yahoo.com <---that's wrong! (There's no underline for the address; the blogger keeps putting it there. So, write: cappy ,then underscore _ then 'and' then underscore_then'pegody' then @yahoo.com I hope I haven't made it too confusing.)
If you've already gotten a card from us in the past, most likely you'll be gittin' another one soon.)
So, that's what I'll be doing for the next couple of days, printing and stuffing the envelopes to head on out your way. Tomorrow I will try meeting up with Cappy to take some meds to one of the guys on the boat. It's terrible when they're way out in the country where there are no roads, and no quick way to get out, even in an emergency. I was talking with Cappy the other day and the Coast Guard radio came on, talking to people who were so far back in the swamp, where it's too hard for anyone to get to, even helicopters, and the 35 yr old captain was having a heart attack. We don't know how it ended, but we were praying fervently for the poor guy and his crew...And the Coast Guard, who were feverishly trying to come to the rescue.
Meanwhile, here at home SparkyBear is having some kind of problem with his mouth, and Cappy is kinda worried about 'his boy'. After I take the meds to Cappy's young man out on the boat, I might have to run dis dawg to the vet. I hope not. The poor little man might have to have a tooth pulled or something...I SURE hope not.
Well, that's what's been going on in our little part of the world. I only have a bit of sewing to finish, then I'm all set for Christmas. I'm feeling kind of guilty for buying these two 'pampered frizzies' (Bichon Frise's) each a doggie shirt, but nothing for Raleigh-Raleigh to wear. Cappy said, put a wreath around his neck and stick a candy cane in his mouth. Done and done.


Snow Place Like Home for the Holidays

Doug and Trish sent us this Christmas card last year. It's got real glitter scattered on the roof-top snow, the bushes and trees, the yard; everywhere. I absolutely love this picture. I couldn't wait til December, so, found it and brought it out and put it on our computer desk in October. It gives me such a warm, comforted feeling, for some reason. I think it reminds me of junior high, and high school, when I'd walk home from school in the winter(two miles...IN the cold...uphill both ways; snickering here). It would be suppertime by the time I'd start down our avenue, and by that time I was shivering, with the snow having somehow gotten down into my boots, making my feet cold and soppy. The frigid air, during the long trek home, always seeped in through the layers of my clothing, so by the time I got home, I was 'chilled to the bone', as we used to say, (and I dare to venture, they still say that up north). Just as I'd be walking through the snow down our lightly traveled street, I might be thinking I couldn't take another step, but there in the dusk, was our house, warm glowing lights streaming out through the windows, encouraging me that I could at least make it that far; to get home to family and warmth...warmth and solace lay ahead. And there was the knowledge that my Mom or Grandma would have something good cooking for supper. I knew that the minute my foot hit our front porch, I'd be able to smell something delicious waiting for me inside. Ohhhh...one of the most wonderful smells in the whole world, to me, was my mother's scalloped potatoes (with ham), especially on a cold, blustery day. My Dad would be sitting there, in from work, reading his newspaper. My brother might be up in his room practicing his drums. My aunt Bev (same age as I am), ...who knows what she'd be up to, the silly girl. The house was packed, full of love and family. Sighhhh...that's why I'm so fond of this painting; it reminds me of Home.


A Leg(s) Up on Christmas

Well, we've gotten all the Christmas gifts bought and mailed, with a few exceptions. Cappy loves his Jeep, which I couldn't hide in the neighborhood, anyhow, til Christmas. We exchanged a couple of presents, since he's going to be out on the boat. He gave me a video camera...a good one, so's I can finally, start the little 'free-lance' business, which I have dreamed about for more than 15 years. He also bought a good tripod for it, but says it still needs a few more whistles and buzzers...(wha-hoo!!) which we plan on aquiring after the holidays. Besides the Jeep, I gave him the meat grinder/sausage stuffer his little heart has longed for, for several years. He likes to tinker with recipes and come up with his own variety of anything he cooks, which is always, as he likes to say, "slap yo mama GOOD", and when he gets it just right, to his liking, we commit it to the 'most favored' recipe file.
If the man didn't love being out in the back bayous, piloting up and down the Mississippi River, or 'stirrin' up mud' along the waterways, in general, he could open his own diner,or at least a 'hole in the wall', as he calls it. 'Down the road' about 15 miles, there is a small 'shack' where folks walk up to the window to order the daily special, like oven-fried chicken and dirty rice...plus the usual stuff, such as burgers, fries, or ice cream desserts, like cones, shakes or sundaes; all pretty much homemade and 'Cajunized'...YUMMEE! I don't know why Cappy couldn't do that somewhere around our neighborhood. He could. But for now, he 'guinea pigs' his lucky crew, with his out-of-this-world concoctions. We didn't get chubby like this, just dreamin' 'bout cooking.
So, to get back to my point, we are pretty well set for Christmas. I'm hoping and praying that I can be able to meet up with his boat Christmas Day, so I won't have to spend it by myself, again, wiff just dese dawgs. In case I can't, I packed his seabag full of presents for him, and am making gifts for his crew, which I need to get finished and taken out to them in the next couple of weeks.
Soooo...Santa came early to our house, gave me a smooch, patted da dawgs and as usual, admonished them to "take care of Momma, while I'm gone", then, whoosh, he was gawn.
Now...down here in South Louisiana, there is a group headed up by a guy named Benny "Grunch" Antin, who has a CD album we love playing, called "The 12 Yats of Christmas". Some of the songs listed are: "I Got a Used Kazoo for Christmas", "Santa Put the Hurt on You","If I Won Da Lott'ry For Christmas", and "I Could See the Aluminum Tree Through the Pitcha Winda". Cappy said, "You laugh...we used to have an aluminum Christmas tree, with the colored light spinner wheel, in our picture window for all the world to see. We thought it was the height of fashion at the time, and were very proud of it". That was way back when he was a young boy, before his family began using green trees, which were then adorned with all kinds of glorious decorations, many of which his mother hand made.
Since this year he's going to be away, and no family will be visiting, plus, I stumbled upon this 4 1/2 ft. aluminum beauty at Hobby Lobby, on impulse, I got it for "him". His eyes actually welled up with tears that I would do something like that for him. Aww. I figger this way, I won't have to haul the big heavy tree, with boxes and boxes of decorations, from the attic...and for what? Just me and the dogs? And, I kinda love this little aluminum tree that's sitting in our window. I can't find the color wheel to go with it (there are plenty online...but, naw...he's already out on the boat), but he bought some small, shiny colored glass balls for it, so I think it looks downright beautiful, and told him so. He thought I was lying, but I'm not.

Sooo..."Santa" is back out on da boat, but look what he left; gifts under our trashy aluminum Christmas tree; and stocking 'chock a block' full of goodies. He even got me a brown (his fav color) coffee cup with snowmen merrily dancing around the outside, so I could enjoy it everyday during the Holiday season. As a matter of fact, I am...two days in a row, so far. "Who Dat" say dey aint no Santa Claus?


Houn' Dawg Blues

My on-line friends always ask me "Cappy, why dont ya play ya harmonica like ya used ta"? Well here's the answer.


Sparky Closes Da Door

Well, I guess ya can tell Peg got a new digital movie camera. I was on the phone with a friend of ours, who said she didn't believe me when I said Sparky closed the door for me. Usually when I come in with an armload of groceries or something, I tell Sparky (who is usually right at my feet) "Close the Door, Sparky!" and he does. So, I thought I'd film it to show her I only lie or exaggerate 'bout fish stories, not doggy ones. It proved to be quite a task, requiring several 'takes', though. I guess Sparky was used to following me in and not havin' me shout at him, from the hall, to close the door. He came through for me, though. So Trishy, now ya believe me????:P


I've Got an "X" to Grind

Since it's the Holiday Season, and more importantly for Christians, the Christmas Season, I don't mean to be gripey, especially now, in what is supposed to be one of the most Joyous times of the year, but...I'm draggggging out the old soapbox already. (tsk tsk tsk, Pegody)
This is not a lecture for You...bear with me; it's an idea. Although the shopping madness and mayhem has begun, which has not much to do with Him, but at least in the past, has been called the Christmas Season. (I'm guilty, too, of over-shopping, if it be guilt that's wanted.) It just seems that lately, so much has been done to take Him out of His own Birthday Celebration time of year. Even tho some may dispute that Jesus wasn't born this time of year, to me it dosn't matter. Just the fact that we celebrate it anytime at all is what counts.
What has always puzzled me, tho, has been this business of replacing the name of our Lord with the letter "X". I've even heard sermons saying we shouldnt' be alarmed, because the "X" stands for the Cross. Somehow it still never sat right with me. If it represents the Cross, then why is it sitting on it's side? It just seems so disrespectful to mistreat the name of the Lord that way. I dunno, maybe it's just me, but this year, I think I'm going to ask...whomever...if instead of an "X", if they feel the word is too long for their signs or patience in length of time to write the word, "Christ", please replace the letter "X" with a "t". Just turn the "X" upright, trim off a couple of the sides a little, and voila: I think I could live with this.
( Parisian Font)

My Heroes

To me, it's the little everyday miracles that mean so much. While Cappy was away, and I was way too busy to mess with it, the drip in the bathtub had gotten much, much worse, to the point that I knew $ was literally running down the drain at a pretty fast clip. I "Googled" info about how I might tackle the problem, but was afraid I'd turn a minor problem into a major catastrophe with no immediate rememdy at hand, and so, let it be. Yesterday Cappy and his 'helper' got it all fixed just like new, with not a drip or drizzle in sight. Ahhhh, what a relief!
Today my boys are sitting in the 'captain's chair' together, of course, watching the Saints play against the Carolina Panthers, while I have a pot of chicken gumbo almost ready to serve. Now all we need is another miracle for the Saints. A big bowl of gumbo and a Saints win would be a nice reward for dese two hero buddies.


Now Dat Was a Thanksgivin'

As Yall know we celebrated our Thanksgivin' Saturday. Today, (da real Thanksgivin') we decided to kinda 'chill'. At the last minute, tonight, 'fore we realized it, the pit was lit, the blues were blaring out on the patio, we had our tacky party lights on, and we were dancin' in the yard 'round a camp fire. Sounds silly, I know, but Peg and I are kinda spontaneous dat way. At da drop of a hat we threw a feast together and had BALL celebrating Thanksgivin' again. Peg had never had black iron pot smokey bbq beans before, so we stuck our ole fry pan full of beans and set 'em on the pit to simmer and drink up some smoke from a pecan log we had put on da coals. We had corn on the cob and some seasoned pork chunks to acompany said beanage and it was a meal fit for a king. Since there was no kings aroung,Peg and I (and da dawgs) ate it, washin' it down with assorted beverages . Sure hope you folks had as much fun as we did , but I doubt it. So now we are all worn out, full of supper and we're goin' to bed. C'mon Boys.


Do I Love Her, or What?

Thanksgiving Day and there I sit, hunkered down in my recliner, contentedly sipping coffee, watching the dog show, while the Packers duke it out with Detroit on the other channel. "P.W'd" (Peggy wooped) you say?? RIGHT YOU ARE.

We Give Thanks to GOD for the Bounty He Has Given Us.

The people and poochies in Cappy and Pegody's World would like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours the happiest and safest of Thanksgivings. We have truly been blest this year, and hope you have, as well. Please pause for a moment and give thanks to God , who made all this possible. Remember, as you celebrate over your turkey and trimmin's that these, like all things come from the Bounty of Christ.
(In one of the last blog postings, I mispoke and said that Cappy would be going back out on the boat today. We actually have a whole other week to spend together!!!)

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving last Saturday, complete with fried turkys, as seen above, and all it's accompinaments and side dishes. Friends came bearing goodies. We had a house full of family and we all had a wonderful time. In true South Louisiana fashion, the meal was served outdoors in warm sunshiny weather, with music blasting from outside speakers. We truly "passed a good time".


Something SPHINX in Here

Now that Cappy's den is empty of grandchildren, he has once again ensconsed himself in his 'captain's chair' (immediate foreground), for a well-deserved rest and is watching his favorite subjects on the History Channel. He is an history buff, and one of the things he loves learning about is Ancient Egypt, and more particularly, pyramids, newly discovered tombs, and mummies. Although our tastes vary widely, I think that, since he's away on his towboat for weeks at a time, with hardly any tv time, that when he's home, he should have full control of the 'clicker' and watch whatever he likes. He also loves to have something cooking on the stove while watching his programs. I was being a lovingly dutiful wife; I swear, trying to muster enthusiasm, watching the tombs being pawed over and excavated. Occasionally, I ran and stirred the thin strips of onion which were caramelizing nicely in the black iron pot, making a wonderful, dark, rich onion gravy (etouffee). I cooked some rice for the ettouffee, then made a salad. We decided to eat on tv trays, while continuing to watch. Finally, I gave him a bowl of the rice and dark brown gravy, which, by then had chunks of stew meat clustered around in it...Yummy! I took a forkful of the stringy mahogany onions and was about to put it into my mouth, but just as the fork passed in front of the television, there on the screen was the same colored close-up shot of a mummy, looking, for all the world, as though the scientist was picking up pieces of my ettouffee from off that mummy with a pair of long tweezers. The dark stuff dangling from those tweezers looked identical to the dark stuff dangling off the end of my fork. I looked at the stringy mummy...I looked at my plate of stringy onions, and swallowed a gag which had clenched in my throat. Cappy was having no problems at all, and said, "This is really good". I didn't say anything, but as discreetly as possible, I sidled out of the den and brought my dish into the computer room, while I puttered around checking my email, reading the online newspapers...stalling; waiting awhile til I thought I might be able to swallow anything ever again.
Cappy is such a sweetie and I'd never want to deprive him of something he really loves, so I watch with him as much as I can, don't when I can't...but never make etouffee while the Discovery or History Channels are on. (Giggling)...He's out there calling, "Hey, Baby! I think you'd really enjoy this!!" That's how I got the picture above...Uh Huh.


They're Gone Already??

It just doesn't seem possible that a week has passed, and they are on the plane now, tonight, winging their way back to Rochester,NY. We took this pic just as they were about to get into the SUV and head on out to the airport. This is the group left to right: Jennifer (our son Dan's wife) their gorgeous baby...my 'cher bebe' grandson Chase Steven, Dan, Melinda(Jennifer's daughter), Robert, whom I am clutching so he won't get away, who is Dan's 15 yr. old son and Manny aka "Hub", (Jennifer's son) who is a complete hoot. It was so hot out we opted to stand in the shade of our banana palms to take the picture.
SparkyBear and MarkyBear are depressed at the loss of the kids, because they spent the week playing with the boys.
Cappy and I are whooped, because it was all just so wonderful and now we are planning his remaining week home and how to spend it. Stuff needs to be taken care of in the house, stuff needs attending outside the house, and I'm sure out in the bayous, the fish are jumpin'. We need to put that boat in the water!
As we recover our senses, one or both of us will be posting pictures of our early
Thanksgiving and the people who came over. We are downtalking those who didn't. (not really) Cappy has to go back out on the boat (the real) Thanksgiving morning...but it won't seem like it to us, because as far as we are concerned, we've already had thanksgiving, and have the turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce leftovers to prove it.
When our family left this afternoon, it was almost 80 degrees. When they arrive tonight, it's a good thing they have their winter garb with them, because it appears that there is snow in the air up thataway. I think we sent enough Love with them to keep them warm, tho.
P.S. They called when they got home to let us know they safely arrived and that Manny was in the process of making a snowball.


Everybody (except Destiny aka Desi Lu) Made it Home

Well, the house if full again with sounds of family...how very nice that is. Instead of getting a chance to relax and regroup, everybody landed feet first and are off and running. Today Dan and Jennifer plan on taking in New Orleans, whilst the rest of the crew readies for tomorrow's early Thanksgiving. Cappy has two 12 lb. turkeys thawed and will soon be injecting them with his special spices then leave them overnight to marinate through and through. Tomorrow he plans on deep frying them to perfection...and folks, if you've never had deep-fried turkey...oh migosh, it's Wonderful. In our archives we have directions, which, perhaps in a few days we may repost up front here.
Please excuse me if this is short and fuzzy; I'm still sipping coffee, trying to get my bearings. We just had a diet breakfast of creamy old-fashioned grits, bacon, home fries, fried eggs,boudin, satsuma oranges and rich coffee. Now I have to haul that with me all day, around my waist, while getting a big Cajun lunch and big Cajun supper ready, and cooking for tomorrow's feast, too. Not gonna skrimp...the kids are writing reports for school on all they ate down here. They liked the beans and sucking the smoked turkey neck bones, file` gumbo, grits and boudin. I plan on having them understand the song 'Jambalaya', which we sing all the way home from the airport every time they come down, by feeding them jambalaya, crawfish pie, and drinking out of a filled fruit jar. As stated...they already had the file` gumbo.
Ok...so, we are 'off to the races'; tawk with ya'll later.


"D" Day

This afternoon is when we expect "Dan and Desi Lu" will be landing at the airport for their long-awaited visit, bringing the rest of the family with them this time. AAAAAAiEEEEE!!! (The Cajun 'joy of life' Yell) I told the dogs that Dan and Desi Lu were coming and they got so excited. I'm telling you, these crazy 'boys' understand so much that sometimes I have to spell things when talking to Cappy, lest they start to go wild and start pushing me with their noses on the back of my legs, toward the door.
The above cartoony thing is Cappy and Pegody's logo, which we put on our biz cards to keep from having to fumble around for pen/paper/pencil etc. when giving friends and aquaintences our address, etc. As of yet, I haven't added pore ol' Raleigh, but he's there, somewhere, chasing the 'Oops Guy' down the yard or something. Since our last name is Robin, we call ourselves the 'chubby robins'...which we are.The chubby Robins assume a laid-back attitude when Cappy is home off dat boat. BUT NOT THIS WEEK!!! The 'flock' is landing today, then Cappy will be getting off the boat Thursday, then it's run-run-run fun-fun-fun. Speaking of 'run'...gotta do that right now, I still got a whole lot to do...am cooking them a big Cajun supper: beans laden with smoked turkey neck bones on rice, our special coleslaw and since I know they are coming, gonna bake a cake!


Another Lovely Mother Passes

Not a couple of hours has gone by since I wrote the last post about mothers and 'kids'. I just found an email that says the mother of Sonia and Monica, two of our closest neighbors just passed today. I called Cappy and he was deeply saddened, as am I. He recalled how she used to meet him at the end of Sonia and her husband Jude's driveway and come visit for hours of pleasant talk. I can't tell you how honored I was one day when she came over to visit with me. By knowing her daughers, you could make an educated guess that their mother would have to be such a gracious Southern lady. I had always hoped she would come by again, but alas, all too soon, due to health issues, she was unable to visit anymore.
It's just so sad; many of the older people, who have learned so much, who have lived such rich lives, who could tell us wonderful stories, keep, one by one, moving along and disappearing off the long treadmill that is time. It brings to mind the poem "Thanatopsis" by William Cullen Bryant. I won't include the whole free-verse poem, but will pick out the parts that touch me the most and paraphrase:

The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
... Through the still lapse of ages.
All that tread The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom.
...yet--the dead are there,
And millions in those solitudes, since first
The flight of years began, have laid them down In their last sleep
--the the dead reign there alone.---
So shalt thou rest
--and what if thou shalt fall
Unnoticed by the living
--and no friend Take note of thy departure?
All that breathe
Will share thy destiny.
... When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care Plod on,
and each one as before will chase His favourite phantom;
yet all these shall leave Their mirth and their employments,
and shall come,
And make their bed with thee.
As the long train Of ages glide away,
the sons of men,
The youth in life's green spring,
and he who goes In the full strength of years,
matron, and maid,
The bow'd with age,
the infant in the smiles And beauty of its innocent age cut off,--
Shall one by one be gathered to thy side,
By those, who in their turn shall follow them.

So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan, that moves
To the pale realms of shade, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon,
but sustain'd and sooth'd By an unfaltering trust,
approach thy grave,
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.

I especially like the last part, which he added later. I like to think that the beautiful mothers, fathers, and all loved ones who have passed before us, are being sustain'd and soothe'd by The Lord and given pleasant rest and truly sweet dreams. God Bless you, Dear Mrs. Steib, I can't wait until it's our time to come and visit with you this time.

Well, KIDS!!!

I know my brother and I gave our parents 'fits'. One thing I remember early on, when I was about four years old (Yes, I can remember way back then) was getting so excited with a new box of crayons, that a sheet of paper just couldn't contain our enthusiasm. My father had to paint the walls in our (my brother and my) shared bedroom. He confiscated our crayon box, putting them in his bedroom on top of his dresser. The next day while he was at work, I distinctly remembering creeping in there and taking them back. (Boy oh boy...how naughty was that??!) I was just going to draw a little bit, but before I knew it, my brother and I were scrawling out the most wonderful pictures on the new apple green painted wall by my bed. I drew the most fantastic tree with a swing hanging from it....thinking, Daddy was going to be so impressed with our drawings, how could he possibly get mad. Well, he could. I just don't remember the bad part of it, whether or not we got a paddling, but the next day he had made an huge chalkboard with a big lip on it to hold all kinds of glorious colored chalk. He must have been used to that sort of goings on in his family, because most of them were artists. A few years later, after he knew he could trust us, he returned our beloved crayons. I still get all excited at the thought of brand new art supplies....even an huge box of crayons Cappy got me one time because I had told him about my brother and me loving them so much when we were younger. How nice was that.
We gave our parents 'fits' later on, too. Like my kids did me. But aha! I gave them (my kids) 'fits' right back, especially when I'd need help with the housework and whip out the much dreaded 'picka-job box'. To this day they still rankle whenever it's mentioned. It didn't help that whenver they picked out five or six slips of paper, that one or two may have included "go take a walk around the block two times to get some fresh air" or "give your sister and brothers a hug", it was the other ones that they hated. Oh sure, they might get to walk around the block a couple of times, but the toilet would be there, for instance, waiting to be scrubbed, or their stack of folded laundry needing to be put in their drawer, or drying a sinkload of dishes. This was for the teenagers, mostly...the younger kids had it a lot easier. It didn't matter; they all hated the 'picka job box'. There were five of them and picka-job by picka-job they all learned how to pull their weight, so to speak and cook...migosh, they are all fantastic cooks. But before that they mocked my 'game' by singing silly words, to the song, "Take a Chance on Me". "You can change your mind...picka job, picka job...but you can't change your job...picka job, picka job..." and it got worse, so we'll just leave it at that.
As I was working, just now, with my own 'picka-job' list of stuff to do before company gets here, Tuesday, I was 'decluttering' a particular 'paper blizzard' in the corner of this desk, and came across something interesting. A piece of paper that reminded me of a man named Zeke, whose mother I met right after moving down to South Louisiana. The poor lady was stooped over and deeply wrinkled, from having had a tough life, raising her kids alone. She'd been through the wringer. Now she lived with the son who had given her the worst time, and his wife, who seemed to care about her and treat her affectionately. Sitting at their kitchen table, Zeke regailed me with stories about when in his teens, how he, his brothers and friends had terrorized his mother, whom he called, "the Old Buzzard". His Mom just sat there, nodding stoically into her glass of iced tea, remembering, too. Horrified, I asked her, "You don't mind if they call you that???" She just looked up and said, "Oh, I got used to it", then sighed and took a sip of her tea. Zeke kept up the stories...he was so animated, I think he must have been one of those kids, and now an adult with an hyperactivity problem. I felt so bad for this dear, patient lady, who, despite it all, appeared to retain her dignity, even in the face of all she'd been through. Even tho her son told stories on himself, and all the awful things, he'd put her through, and even tho he still called her, "Old Buzzard", I got the feeling that he loved and admired her for putting up with all of it, and not killing all of them...which she must have felt like, at times. In the years that followed, I thought about her now and then, fondly, and prayed for her at those times.
About six months ago, Zeke called, looking for a phone number for an old friend that Cappy may have had. I asked him about his mother. He said she had passed. His voice softened and he said that she had been ill for some time. In the time he had sat by her bed with her, he had, had a lot of time to reflect. He said he felt bad for all the terrible things he had put her through and had told her so. He said, "You know, I learned a lot. As she got older, we knew it was wrong to call her Old Buzzard. We wanted her to know we loved her, so we stopped calling her that." Oh GOOOOD, I thought, and said so, too. I was thinking that she finally got to hear herself called 'Mother' or 'Mom',at last, the Dear Heart. "Yeah", he agreed, and continued softly, "We loved her, so we just started calling her "Buzz"... (the POOR Lady!) She probably went to her grave wishing her kids were back in their terrible two's.
I dearly miss my Mom, especially this time of year. She was always rushing around with some holiday cooking project at hand. The woman seemed inexhaustable. I couldn't keep up with her! No matter that I was an adult, I was still her kid, so I think my dawdling exasperated her. Mom has essentially passed the baton on to Cappy, who now has to put up with my puttering. As mentioned in an earlier blog, I'm working on our Christmas card. I want it to be just right, but am, perhaps, too picky with it. Well, he's coming home Thursday. Whenever somebody rushes me, I kinda panic, and that's when mistakes happen. I just don't want him to come home and find that he has to repaint the walls in here again. I guess it's just like this blog posting, which you are presently reading; I was only going to write a little something, but the thoughts just went everywhere, hither and yon...I had trouble staying inside the lines again. Some things just never change, I guess.


Pick a Card

I've kept this card around for years. When I bought it, I thought I'd send it to someone, sometime, but everytime it's found itself out of a junk trunk or box of miscellaneous stuff, I've always so thoroughly enjoyed it that I decided to keep it around for awhile longer. It's got one of those blank insides. I've always been a big fan of the cartoonist, Gary Larson, anyhow.
Presently, it reminds me that Dan and Jennifer are jumping through all the paper hoops in Rochester, getting ready to move into their new house. The reason the cartoon reminds me of that, is because I promised them that 'the Arkys' (SparkyBear and MarkyBear) wouldn't mess on their floors. They should be all moved in by Christmas, I think, and we aren't really planning on going up for a real visit til next May. When we go, I'd love to take the dogs with us again. It was surprising how much they loved the road trip, and they were so well-behaved. They did mess up at "Aunt Sookie's" house, tho, by peeing on the carpet one time...right in the middle of the floor! I don't know what the purpose of that was; we weren't there, as they were being 'babysat', while we gallavanted around town. Sookie has, or did have five cats, so I don't know whether that was a factor or not. That was no excuse. 'It was one of the nicest visits we spent in Rochester...and then they had to go and do that on the carpet!'
Dan and Jennifer & 'troop' should arrive next Tuesday afternoon; a couple of days before Cappy gets off the boat. I'm still feverishly working on getting things 'stowed' into nooks and crannies in the name of 'Organization'. Even with odds and ends going to 'da road' or 'anywhere', it feels as though a petite Cinderella(ahem...that being all the nice, pretty stuff in our little house...) has grown into a vast, tangled, oversized, ponderous, tentacled colossus trying to fit herself into a tiny ball gown, (...and that would be the house...) well, it just aint workin'. Well, dat 'prince' will be gettin' off the boat next week, too, so ol' Cinderella better excercise a whole lot more discretion. I'm workin' on it...I'm workin' on it. (I guess I kinda strangled logic somewhat on of all that, but I think you get the point.)The day before company arrives I plan on hauling big boxes to the post office and sending them off to New York. I hope the kids don't mind holding onto their Christmas gifts, in BOXES, taking up space in their houses for about a month or so.
I took a break from all that to write this blog to you. Actually, I took a break from drawing our Christmas card. You'd think after so many years, it would get easier, but it hasn't. Cappy said I'm always picking at them, even after they are finished, and that I am still touching them up and primping on them, even as they are on their way into the envelopes and the glue is all wet. Too true. As in the past, we'll post them here on the blog, (check archives) as well, so 'Yall' can see them. I am thinking that if you write and ask for one of our Christmas cards at our email: cappy_and_pegody@yahoo.com , you just might find one in your 'snail mail' box this year. (Of course, if you are already friends and family, you know yours will be finding it's way to your house again, as usual.)
Alright, it was nice 'visiting' with you just now, but, alas, back to...hey! what's that on the floor?! Why, it's two white 'pamered curlies' (bichon frise in French), just laying there, innocently snoozing, for a change. Hmm.


If This Doesn't Make You Smile, I Don't Know What in the World Could.

I suppose I could've taken lots of pictures of all the kids who came to our house for Halloween, as I usually do, but this year, all I really wanted was a few snapshots of this little guy. Dis here is the best "Charlie Brown" and his dog, Snoopy, that I've ever seen. His parents, Karlie and Jean, plus, someone I suspect may be an aunt, brought him by just before the 'throng' hit our street. I couldn't stop giggling at the sight of little Jake aka Charlie Brown and wished I had my camera out. Finally, I couldn't resist any longer and went down the street to take these pictures. He's just so darned CUTE!!


Hippy Halloween

Cappy likes to call himself an old hippy. I, myself, was always disdainful of the hippy lifestyle when it first began. To me, it represented the tearing down of moral values which were built on modesty and self-control. I thought it was just an excuse to flat-out flaunt disrespect for Mom, the flag, apple pie and the American way. To Cappy it represented openly showing people that you care about them and helping others, and he hadn't gotten into the drop out and 'dope' scene. What reminded me of all that was, yesterday when I was cleaning out the attic...or attempting to anyhow, I ran across a lava lamp. It's still in the box because it was a gift we've never opened. I've threatened to give it away several times, but he's always said, "No, I fully intend to have it running in the den one of these days; it's relaxing to watch them". I suppose they are, I wouldn't know. When I talked to him last night, he said to go ahead and give it to Goodwill or something. Yesssss. I've adopted his 'to da road' theme when it comes to 'dunging' out closets or sheds or attics or whatever anymore. It's just so...well, exhilarating...so freeing. It's less junk I have to worry about.
And the climbing up and down the attic ladder laden with stuff is pretty good excercise, too. Lord knows I need it. I still have excercise equipment in boxes, too. I was telling our friend, Trishy, that Cappy and I like watching that commercial for the AB Lounger, especially right near the end of it, where they ask, "Now...would you rather have an AB Lounger or this hamburger". Have you seen that huge hamburger? They put it on a plate and pat the bun. That bun looks so soft and the melted cheese and/or mayo sauce, or whatever it is, comes seductively oozing out the sides...oh migosh, we always yell, "The hamburger!!" and wonder where in the world they found such a gloriously decadent object of desire. Nontheless, I bought the AB Lounger with hopes of finding room in our tiny house to set it up and actually begin to use it. I never did lose all the weight I had gained (which I couldn't afford to gain in the first place) while getting off those miserable lexapro pills.
So that's pretty much what I've been doing lately. Putting the Summer clothes in the 'tupperware' bins and exchanging them for the Winter clothes, tossing stuff to da road, trying to clear out the house of 'stuff' in anticipation of all the company we'll be expecting for our Thanksgiving. Dan has the plane tickets in hand for the whole crew, and they can hardly wait to come down. Seven of them...two adults, four kids and one baby. I am just tooo excited thinking about it. I think we will be putting them up in our 'mobil bed and breakfast'. It can handle eight people, 'easily'.
Thanksgiving isn't even here and I already have all the Christmas gifts wrapped and ready to ship to NYS...emma good or what. Not really; I just know that if I wait til after Thanksgiving to rush around, buying and wrapping and figgering and sweating and packing it all in separate sturdy boxes to send to all the kids, it wouldn't probably make it there in time for Christmas. Uhhh...been there...done that. <:"> So, now I can spend time finishing up some of my Christmas sewing projects and baking. I have banana nut bread frozen, from our bananas and pecans, waiting for Thanksgiving dinner, which is going to be some kinda Cajun/Yankee production. The menu is still being worked on, going to be posted so fambly and friends can sign up for what they will make. It's goina be goooood, I do know that!
But, until then...I still have today to get through. So far, I have two big bags of Kit Kats waiting by the door for trick or treaters tonight. The only reason they are still sitting there, unmolested, is that I deliberately bought candy made with wheat in it, so I couldn't touch it. I'm still wearing Halloween candy around my hips from last year, which I hadn't had the foresight or restraint to stay out of, before the kiddies had a chance to hit our door-step. Shame shame shame, Pegody! No self-control...guess I am of the HIPPY ilk afterall...darn it! Alright, where is that AB Lounger box...and the lava lamp? (I might as well have something to look at while I'm 'Lounging').


I Got Nuttin' To Say

...But that's never stopped me.
Cappy just called. He's pushing his oil barge way over in Texas today. That's the farthest he's been from home with that thing, as long as I've been here, anyway. Because it's a new location, fraught with twists and turns and a lot of boat traffic, he and the crew have been losing sleep. He drove all night, with his "co-cappy" reading the maps to help him navigate in the dark. He said as soon as they get there and get tied up, he's gwinder take a nap.

That's what SparkyBear has been doing a lot of lately...sleeping. I took 'the boys' with me yesterday while I ran several errands. It was chilly, so I left the windows down a bit so they could get fresh air and snoop everybody who walked by. 'Course Mark barked at anyone who came near his vehicle. I got them their usual treat meal at Sonic, but Sparky didn't eat. When we got home he threw up, had 'rhea' and has just been lying around. I hope he didn't get anything at the vet's last week when Cappy and I took Mark for his shots and to check on his poor leg, (which has never gotten any better since his 'war injury' with the squirrel a few years ago). We take both the dogs whenever we go, so they won't think everytime they go to the vet's they are getting a shot or whatever, and more moral support to the other one, who is getting a shot, or perhaps worse, their temperature taken. So, I'll be keeping an eye on SparkyBear and babying him.

An update: It's been about a whole month and a half now, since I have finally gotten off those lexapro pills!!! I can actually say, I think I finally did it! It took, what...five months? During the last month, I was beginning to worry that I might not be able to really do it...that stuff fought me 'tooth and nail'. One other problem reared his ugly head tho, which began to occur once I was off them; that being, my true emotions surfacing for the first time in three years. I'd find myself crying for no apparent reason, or angry for no apparent reason, or...any kind of emotional response seemed to be overblown. My feelings had to relearn where the 'guardrails' were again, and not overreact. I think I've got an handle on it all now. It does seem nice to be able to cry over a good movie, instead of stoically sitting there wondering what's wrong with everyone else, who were watching the same movie I was, but they were bawling their eyes out over nothing. After I got off those pills, for awhile there, I was even crying over commercials; heck, if they are poinient enough, I still do.

We have a friend in Utah, who recently started writing their blog and have included pictures and funny stories. I really like it, and think you will too. Here's a link to it: http://ggizzmo.blogspot.com/

Welllll, I s'pose I'd better get a move on now, that banana nut bread aint makin' itself....and from our own yard even!! I can't tell you how excited I am about having bananas and pecans and lemons, which are also getting ripe, grapefruit (mouth drooling over these sweet ones which are huge and ripening) and oranges and little tangerine-like Satsuma oranges. I just don't have the words, but that's never stopped me before.


Breath of Fresh Air Blowin' Through

I was wondering if we'd ever see cooler weather around these parts, but yesterday afternoons's heavy rainstorms brought us the weather that permits me to sit here and write, "It's 56 degrees out!" Finally, a temperature that no longer gives me an excuse to stay inside, letting the yardwork run amok with it's poor neglected self. When Cappy was home, we managed to go out in ten minute increments and clear out a little debris from around the paw-paw trees, pull up the garden weeds, and he cut down tall woody 'weeds' from around the house, but that was it.
Presently, he's on the boat, teaching Asa, one of his young crewmen how to navigate the winding, narrow bayous in the wind. It's not easy...the wind wants to take control of the huge oil barge they are pushing. If you've seen the pictures in past blogs of how narrow some of those bridges are, and know this: slowing down while passing through them, lessens the control. Can you imagine how unnerving it must be for a novice to try keeping his speed up while passing his huge 'camel through the eye of the needle' in heavy winds? To make matters worse, the people who run the bridges are very particular, and who could blame them? If a bridge gets damaged, for whatever reason, not only might the bridge have to shut down for repairs, causing traffic chaos, but it has to be reported to the United States Coast Guard, and ...do you have any idea about all the paperwork and redtape involved with that? Over the phone I can hear Cappy encouraging the young man, telling him what a great job he is doing, and even calling him, proudly, "Captain Asa", even tho, of course, as of yet, he doesn't have his captain's license. No wonder whenever there's an opening, Cappy's phone is ringing off the wall with 'guys' wanting to come be part of his crew. What can I say...Cappy's a nice man.
Good men are hard to find. Cappy and I went to the polls and voted for someone we think is a good man. We are thrilled that he was elected outright as our new governor. I say 'outright', because in Louisiana, if the individual running for office doesn't get at least 51% of the votes, there has to be a 'run-off', and it's my humble opinion that, perhaps, that's where dirty politics gets to put it's sticky paws in and foul up the final results. Again, I'm just (still) a Yankee, and new to all of this, don't know all the intricate workings of how Louisiana politics works, but something has 'stunk in Denmark' around here, politically speaking, for some time, so that's one of my simplistic opinions of that matter. And so to that, I lift my coffee cup and toast our new governor-elect, Bobby Jindal, and say, "Here, here!...Go sic 'em boy! You have our prayers and God knows, you'll need 'em."


An AWFULLY Wonderful Two Weeks

We're alive and well, in case you were wondering about us, and, I guess, survived. Right now, I'm sitting amongst the 'ruins' and still surveying things. Before we left for Houston, we managed to somehow crash our computer and erase all the pictures and files. (Presently, am trying not to start bawling about that one.)
Cappy and I did have a fun drive over, tho, listening to CD's...especially one that our friend Linda sent us.
I'd never been to the Houston area, so when we arrived during rush hour in a rain storm, we didn't know which toll line to pull into. We shuffled back and forth til we found what we thought was the correct one, and immediately traffic pulled in behind us. Too late. The machine wanted correct change, preferably, quarters. Oh oh. Cappy was only carrying bills, so I feverishly began rifling through my purse, and glancing in the rear-view mirror at the traffic pileup behind us. One or two quarters and some tic tacs. I told Cappy I had just cleaned out my purse and put about three or four dollars worth of quarters someplace in there, then continued rummaging. Nothing. Nothing. I think horns started sounding; I dunno, maybe it was the blood rushing through my ears. I wanted the people behind us to know we were trying, so I grabbed two handfuls of my hair and pulled them up in the air like that cartoon guy Dagwood used to wear his hair. Cappy grabbed my purse, in desperation, and stuck his big paws in there trying to locate the missing quarters. He came up with a couple of pennies and a nickle. I looked out the side window for perhaps a human from one of the other toll booths to come to our aid, but there was nobody walking around in the froth of traffic swirling around the other toll booths. From here and there, under the mat, down beside the seat he came up with a hand full of change and said, "Here...just toss it all into the basket and see how close we come!" I fed the beast the fistful of coins. It needed one more quarter to make the $1.50 before it would release us so that the rest of the herd behind us could start moving, too. I could almost hear time ticking, ticking, ticking. I dove back into my purse and came up empty. Beside my seat...Thank God A Mighty... I found the quarter that would save us and tossed it in,...!?... then we were off. I wanted to get as far away ahead of what I feared would be a posse behind us. (Later, during a pit stop, looking for hand wipes, I located the neat little nest of quarters, demurely and innocently smiling up at me. I told Cappy, "Ohhh, here are my quarters". I only got a look from him.) Ah well...typical "Us".

We finally did make it to our hotel without too many other side-tracks, then to cousin Mark's house for his 50th surprise birthday party. Cousin Mark feigning surprise, and his wife, Susan. He'll also be feigning 50...cuz he said he'll take the gifts and everything, but he won't take the bein' 50. Yeah, I guess "the BIG 29th Birthday" aint the easy one. Since he is an avid golfer, we got him this sign. In our past blogs we wrote about the deep respect we have for this guy. Not to settle for having been given medals and honors, then made a Major in the Air Force, having served time leading troops in Iraq, he was recently promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel!! No wonder whenever we mention we named our dog after him, we just get a blank stare and no comment.
It was a fun evening, spending time with family and friends. Mark and Susan's daughter, Emily, is about to have her baby girl any minute now. We know she's going to be a beautiful baby...look who her new mommy is. And what a sweetie! It was great seeing our good-humored friend, Cathy and our sweet cousin Cindy.

We met a few other new (to us) faces, and enjoyed seeing Mary and cousin Kim, who not only lost about ten pounds, but what appears to be ten years in the process. (grrrr...that shoulda been me.)

I mentioned we had lost pictures on our computer...I also lost all the pictures I took. I swiped these pictures from Cousin Larry on our sister website. I had so many pictures I wanted to show 'Yall'. I think these are pretty nice, tho.

Somebody had made a washtub full of Jello shots. I had never tried any of those things before, so I ate/drank...swallowed one. Gah! Blech! Well, they must be pretty good or they wouldn't have stayed so popular all this long. Here's Aunt Marguerite downing one; she looks pretty happy about it.

The next morning we got up and rode the shuttle bus to the Texas Renaissance Festival with the rest of the family, who met us at the hotel. Mark and Susan were in period dress. They looked so coool. At some point Cappy and I would like to have costumes to wear...Cappy a pirate, and Pegody, some kind of wench...but a wench with an high neckline.
We met our friends, David and Ginger & the boys, Owen and Patrick at the front gate, and hung around with them most of the time. (Cappy and I kept wandering around like two kids, not paying attention to where we were going, and kept losing them...dang! Even with the map Cappy is studying, we still got lost.) Practically the first thing, Ginger and I got flower head wreaths, which was fun.
I'm still bemoaning the pictures I took, and SAW before they were erased. David is Cappy's childhood friend. The picture I had taken of them together made them look as though they were still 8 years old. It was the best.
The park setting was breathtakingly beautiful and so was the architecture of the buildings. The shows were hilarious. Pirate shanties, a skeleton puppet,naughty singing bar wenches, a mud pit skit, a Shakespeare parody, for instance. I tried to be inconspicuous while taking a picture of a Conquistador knight in shiny gold armor, but he saw me and came running over, knelt on one knee, took my hand and sang an absolutely bee-oootiful love song into my eyes, while Cappy laughed and snapped pictures. We rode in these swings which were festooned with long blue ribbons and hung down from about an hundred feet up in the tall trees. It was a refreshing ride because the temperature was hot that day. What I had looked forward to, because I had heard so much about him, was a Shakespearean recital by one of the regulars to the festival, who had performed there for years. I guess he wasn't on his game that day. The guy who showed up was (referring to my list of character from past blog postings), Dr./Prof. Onofrio Unctuousaur. He had no mic, quickly assembled a few picnic tables near to where he was sitting in the shade, and began a political rant, down-talking our government. Then he went into character. Ginger and I were both confused as to which character he was supposed to be at any one point...the Bard himself, or one of the characters Shakespeare had written about, such as Romeo. He spotted the confusion on my face and said, "Would you just look at the look on that woman's face...she thinks perhaps I am lying". He asked me a couple other questions during his pretend English accented diatribe, but perceiving I was a blonde dunderhead, not correctly responding, gave up on me. I still don't 'have a clue'. But I love Shakespeare, and I'll go back to reading it. The authentic him I understand.
I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful dresses that were worn throughout the park that day. As I said, the weather was hot, and as it was, in my thin, but black shirt, I was roasting. I can't even imagine how hot these costumes, many made with tapestry material and velvets...not to mention the armor and leather many of the men wore...must have been. Next time I go, it will be light-weight, light colored cotton for me. We watched a parade which wound it's way around the huge park. I'd show more photos of the parade, but suffice it to say, there was a lot of flashy flesh showing in these, Cousin Larry's, pictures. He does take nice pictures, but his interests don't, so much, lie in the architecture of the buildings or the landscape.

This is more typical of Cousin Larry's photo opps. I had to search for quite awhile to find the ones above this one. There are tons and tons of pictures like this available. Hey, it's what he likes. It's what makes him happy. I didn't notice Cappy complaining either. Personally, I didn't see all that many of the ladies dressed like this. I was was actually quite surprised Cousin Larry had found so many.

The next day we left early and wandered our way back home, listening to an audio book on CD. Once home Cappy spent hours and hours trying to get the computer up and running again. I won't even bother going into detail here. Suffice it to say, I think his beard had gotten a few more gray hairs. It was a very frustrating time for him. He did manage to cook out on 'da pit' one night. Our friend, Pam, came over and had supper with us. Cappy smoked four ducks for future gumbos, barbequed some spareribs, and of course the obligatory sausage. This pic is Cappy cutting up one of the smoked ducks. I made an andouille, chicken and smoked duck gumbo from one of the ducks. I can't believe I lived most of my life not knowing what real gumbo is. It makes me feel good when he says he taught me well. I plan on making some more of it when 'the Yankees' come down next month. We are thrilled that our bananas have gotten ripe and that we are picking pecans now. A very good year for them. He finally coaxed Raleigh into accepting his igloo dawg house, where he curls up on lots of comfy rags, especially when it's stormy and rainy. Yesterday we awoke a few hours before daylight, filled the SUV with his seabag, plus sundry other bags, ditty, and other wise, and headed for Houma, putting him back on da boat again, for another 28 days. Soooo, that's where we've been, and that's what we've been doing for the last two weeks. OH! And he said he LOVES his new Jeep! He drove it around some and can't wait til he gets off the boat the next time, so's we can take it 'over da levy' as he calls it, to go fishin'. Now. The next time he gets off the boat, Dan and his family, plus, Cappy's sister Maria and her family, friends and family, are planning on coming here for an early Thanksgiving! Anticipating that should make the days go faster for me. And now...as for me....I still have a lot of finishing up work to do on dis 'gingerbread house'.

We hope all is well with you and yours. We missed you! Hugs, Cappy and Peggy...and dese dawgs.