Musings from some former inhabitants of the sprawling metropolis that is Prudhomme City

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Saturday Superfluousness

So no big whoops in the Mottram household lately (or probably ever in the minds of most who read this blog). Thus, I present to you a list of the stuff that's been occupying my mind of late. I know, I know. You can hardly wait. No, really. You must try to curb your enthusiasm.

* The good news: the mayor survived his pacemaker placement and arteriogram. The bad news: he has to have another procedure. In the mayor's own words via email:
Wednesday is the date for the stent. They will have to go into the abdominal artery through my left groin. If the bruise colors are anything like those on my right groin, which they used for the arteriogram, I can cover up my privates and go into public places explaining these are tattoos of evening sunsets displayed in my groin areas.....the new thing in tattooing, forget the biceps!

This is an evidentiary email that proves, once and for all, from whom I inherited my cute lil' wit. Also, it makes me realize how much I hate the word groin. That is one icky word, no?

* The semester has begun, and it looks like I am in for a world of hurt. Too, too much readin' and writin'. I may have bitten off more than I can chew by taking four classes. Time will tell.

* Geography nerds unite! Two fun games to which I was alerted through many hours of randomly surfing the internets. I pride myself on the fact that, despite receiving the most dismal of edification about geography during my school tenure, I have a pretty good grasp of the relative location of lots and lots of places. These two sites shot that whole theory to s**t in a hurry. By playing this U.S. state identification game, I found out that I have no idea where any of the New England states are AND when it comes to the Four Corner states, they are, apparently, all interchangeable in my mind. But this was only a minor scrape on my geographical self-aggrandizing, for when I played this world geography location game, I found out that I have literally no concept of where any country in Africa is (except for South Africa, which a trained monkey could also probably find). But the O.J.-like stab to my sorely over-estimated knowledge of the globe was when I realized that pretty much any question that asked me to pinpoint a place located east of Africa and west of California, left me scratching my head in a Neanderthalish manner. Frightening.

* Nooooooooooooooo!!!!!! Say it ain't so, Kuccy! Sniff, sniff. I'm so depressed now.

* I'm not trying to be all judgey and stuff, but why did that masseuse who found Heath Ledger unconscious and not breathing call Mary Kate freaking Olsen THREE times before she called 911?!? Apparently, it doesn't matter as he was well past the point of resuscitation by the time she found him, but still. And, as for Heath Ledger's untimely passing, it made me really sad. I loved him in Ten Things I Hate About You, one of his first roles, so it was weird when I started to realize that quite a few people weren't even sure who he was, including Alex. All Alex knew about Heath Ledger was that he was in "that gay cowboy movie Brokeback Mountain". This makes me even more sad. Ledger's performance was incredible in that movie. Ugh, I could cry just thinking about his character in that movie. Anyway...God speed to Heath. I hope he's in a place of peace and joy.

* Thank you, Dana Jacobsen, for reminding me not to make a perfect a** of myself. I found the whole thing especially cringe-worthy since I could totally see myself having a horrible lack-of-good-judgement episode like hers. Henceforth, Alex can expect to find me muttering Don't be a Dana Jacobsen... don't be a Dana Jacobsen... to myself before entering any event where liberal imbibing of alcoholic beverages is involved lest I become the subject of a photograph such as this:

* Over my semester break, I had the chance to read my favorite type of book (fiction!) for my favorite purpose (leisure!). Somehow I ended up with a book by Harlan Coben. I don't even know where it came from, but it was on a shelf and realizing that I'd never read it, I did just that. Now, I'm not that big of a fan of thrillers, crime dramas, serial murder mysteries, or whatever you want to call them, but this Harlan Coben fella was right up my alley. I read four of the books in his series starring Myron Bolitar, a sports agent, as the protagonist. The books are chockful of wickedly funny and quirky characters and plot twists. If you're looking for some humorous, quick, and engaging reading, you'd probably enjoy this series. I highly recommend it.

That's all for now, my fave peeps! Have a fantastic weekend!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Meet Gizmo Bin Laden- Terrorist Cat

So, I've mentioned Gizmo, our cat and in-house terrorist, a few times in this here blog. Several years ago, we appended her name to Gizmo Bin Laden because she would jump out from behind doors and s**t and just randomly attack. Now she's just fat and lazy. I know this because when people come to our house, and Gizzy inevitably waddles into the room to sniff at and annoy our guests, they always say the same thing, D**n, that cat got fat, yo! Except for my mom whose most recent response to her appearance was, Oh my, Gizmo! Your head is too small for your body. Which is just the mom way of saying, Your cat is clinically obese.

This is pretty much Gizmo's schedule:
1. 6:30ish-8:00ish AM- Begin day by trying to trip female caretaker by being underfoot from bedroom to kitchen. Meow annoyingly non-stop while female fixes coffee and loud gibberish comes from the hole in her face. (Translated human mouth noises that occur with regularity: Shut up!- S**t, you almost tripped me!- Da**it, you're killin' me cat!- Shut the h*ll up!) As soon as female sits anywhere, jump on her, meow in her face, and thrust head at hands until she pets me. Continue this for as long as possible.
2. 8:00ish AM- 5:30ish PM- Sleep. Wake up occasionally for bathroom breaks, to watch birds from the back door, to meow some more at female, to demand attention, and to claw *any cloth item of any value whatsoever into oblivion. (* couch, speaker cover on TV, blanket/ comforter, human clothing [preferably male's], curtains, etc.)
3. 5:30ish- 7:00ish PM- Wait for male caretaker to arrive. Meow incessantly until male arrives. As soon as male arrives and sits, jump on him, meow in his face, and thrust head at hands until he pets me. Also, claw shirt so as to destroy it in shortest amount of time possible.
4. 7:00ish- 10:00ish PM- Sleep. Take occasional breaks to watch for the moment when either of the humans sits, jump on them, meow in their faces, and thrust head at hands until he or she pets me.
5. 10:00ish- 11:00ish PM- Follow male. Get underfoot while prepares to lie down in my bed. Once he has, lumber over and drape myself across his stomach and allow him to pet me while I drift off.
6. 11:00ish PM- 6:30ish AM- Sleep. Take occasional breaks to wander through rooms clawing humans' material items to shreds, jump on bed to walk across bodies and heads, burrow under covers, and just generally be sure to wake the humans at least once.
7. 6:30ish AM- Resume previous day's schedule.

I thought some of you may want to check out our fat cat, which, of course, you probably do not...but this is my blog. So there.


I'z shleepy cat

Friday, January 18, 2008

FoodSaver Wars

So I'm not a "gadget person". I don't, in a general sense, enjoy gadgets. Mostly this is because, like most of the particulars in my life, these things tend to go to hell in a handbasket in short order within my presence. Take my first experience with an MP3 player. Defective. Seriously. Like right out of the box. Yeah, that's me. One exception to this is cell phones. For some reason, I have an obsession with cell phones. This makes absolutely no sense at all as I hate phones. I hate talking on the phone. I only call people when absolutely necessary. If I call you just to chat, chances are the earth has slipped off its vertical axis, and it is snowing in hell. But every time I get those "Upgrade your phone for free!" offers in the mail, I'm hightailing it over to the Cingular store like my hair is on fire, and they're the only ones with water. The only other gadget that I am enthralled with is my FoodSaver. My dad gave it to me. It is my current obsession. I recently bought a bounty of Food Saver containers. My goal being to vacuum pack in bags or containers every food stuff on the shelf or in the fridge, so that I never have to go to the grocery store again. We'll have an archaeological display in the pantry. Just look at that brown sugar! I'll prounce with pride. I've had that since the turn of the century. I have tried, over the past few weeks, to vacuum pack everything. This led to an unfortunate incident with the cat, but I digress. You get my drift; the Food Saver is MY gadget.

Alex is a lover of gadgets. (Except, of course, for cell phones. If there is anyone who hates the telephone more than me, it is Zandy.) Since we got our new grill from Ted and Molly, we decided to do a trial run with ribeyes, which Alex always marinates. Thus, his beady little eyes took an interest in MY gadget for the first time. Until the grill, Alex had no interest in MY gadget. The ribeyes changed all that. Suddenly, he wanted to know "how exactly to use that thing", although I have been showing him glittering packages of my vacuum packed handiwork for months now. It's been like show and tell around here. I'd vacuum pack something and then scamper to the office, which is where Alex is invariably holed up, giggling madly and holding up my prizes. Look! I vacuum packed seventy-eight pounds of pork chops! Look! I vacuum packed nine gallons of spaghetti sauce! You get the idea. I am the master of the Food Saver, and it is MINE. It made me extremely nervous and overprotective that he wanted to lay hands on it. I hovered over him like a mother bird.

Our first battle was bag vs. container. He wanted to use a bag to marinate the steaks. No! I cried. Not bags! Containers are for marinating. You can't use bags. It'll suck the liquid into the vacuum thingy, and you'll have broken MY gadget, and then I will have to come up with a clever way to dispose of your body! Now, the thing with Alex is, when you tell him he can't do something, he just has to prove you wrong. So I was very suspect when, after a much too brief argument, he gave in and used a container. I should have known better. Later, I'll come back and turn these and vacuum them again, he told me.
Oh, but you don't need to do that, I told him. The FoodSaver is a miracle from a box. It will marinate those steaks in 4.3 seconds, and it will put all other foods you've ever marinated to shame.

Quite a bit later (he cleverly tried to wait until I was lulled into a stupor by "House Hunters"), I heard him rustling around in the kitchen. It took several minutes before alarm bells went off in my head. I flew off the couch and got into the kitchen in time to see him pouring marinade into a FoodSaver bag. Rats! Foiled! was pretty much what I got out of the look on his face. Things went downhill from there.

Me: You can't do that! I told you! No liquids! You'll break it!
Him: It's fiiiiiiiine. I'll be careful. It's just a little.
Me: No! I actually read the manual, and my daddy told me! No liquids in the bags!
Him: It's fiiiiiiine. I'll be careful.
At this point, he was closing the lid, and panic was setting in at the thought of losing my baby.
Me: Stop! Don't do this! You're going to break it! I'll never, ever forgive you! Don't make me divorce you! Don't make me kill you! Stop!

Then as his fingers hovered above the button, I realized that if I was going to stop this handcart to hell, I had no choice but to break out the big guns.

Me (now verging on hysteria and in the high-pitched voice of crazy *ss southern wives everywhere): If you break my FoodSaver, I will ...TELL MY DADDY! That's right! I'll TELL MY DADDY! My daddy got that for me! He'll hate you! He'll kill you FOR me!
Him (completely non-plussed and sadly shaking his head at me): You need medication. (presses button)

Of course, it did start to suck up the liquid, but since I was standing there wringing my hands and one step away from hanging from the rafters by my fingernails, he stopped when I shrieked. Then he slowly turned, put his hands on my shoulders, and said, Prozac. Tomorrow. Oh..and I told you I was right. If you're careful, you can use the bags. I just grabbed my Food Saver, cradled it lovingly to my chest, and murmured soothing words to it about "the bad man" and "never letting him touch you again."

Now if you'll excuse me, dear peeps, I'm off to vacuum pack sixty-four pounds of chicken breasts.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Happy Birthday, Pap-Pap

So forgive me, dear peeps, if I become a bit sentimental and sappy in the course of this post. You see, today is a special day. Way back in 1908, an incredible person was deposited on Earth, my maternal grandfather. My Pap-Pap. He was one of eight children, three girls (one set of twins!) and five boys, born to John and Margaret Green in Irvona, Pennsylvania. His full given name was Charles Leroy Green. In the handful of times that his full name came up in conversation between my very Southern friends and me, the response was always the same. They would look at me in confusion and then, hesitatingly and in hushed tones, lean in and say, " So...your" You see, the only people with the surname Green down here are African-Americans. And that name sure does sound like a solid brother's name, don't it? Bad, bad Leroy Brown, baddest man in the whole d**n town! At any rate, no one knows where my great-grandmother came up with Leroy, but I've been told that she always insisted that it was NOT pronounced Lee-Roy but Le' Roy, like the French version. Every time I hear this story, I fall in love with this woman. Of course! Le'Roy. How very continental! The other thing is it got shortened to Roy, and that's what he went by all of his life. But why did he end up being called by a shortened version of his middle name? Well, beyond the obvious lack of appreciation for Frenchie-sounding names in the mountains of Pennsylvania in the early 1900s, my Great-Grandmother and Great-Grandfather Green took turns choosing the first names of the kids. If it wasn't Great-Grandma Green's turn to choose the first name, she got to choose the middle name and vice-versa. You see where I'm going with this. Whatever name she chose for the kid is the one they got called, thus my grandpa became Roy, not Charles, the name Great-Grandpa Green had chosen. This story also makes me fall in love with my great-grandma. I can just imagine her thinking, Sure, we'll take turns choosing names, but I'll be d***ned if I'm gonna call 'em by the one you chose. Did I mention that in her youth Great-Grandma Green was a redhead? Yeah, fiery! My oldest brother's middle name is Roy. I call him Charlie Roy quite often, which he doesn't like at all, but it reminds me of my grandpa. I think it's an honor to share his name.

Here's a picture of Pap-Pap.

One of the best things about Pap-Pap was his infinite patience with people, especially my grandma who, I've heard, could be a bit...demanding on occasion. (Personally, I never experienced anything but massive spoiling by Mom-Mom.) There is a particular story, related to this, that I love. My dad tells it. One time when my parents were visiting them, Mom-Mom sent Pap-Pap and Daddy off to the store to pick up a few things. As they headed toward the door, Mom-Mom called out, "Oh, Roy!" sending them scuttling back to the kitchen to add to the list. This happened a few more times. Each time as they were headed toward the door, Mom-Mom would chirp, "Oh, Roy!" and they would go back to have her add to the list. Finally, as they headed toward the door and "Oh, Roy!" came from the kitchen, Pap-Pap snagged my dad's elbow and propelled him out the door, leaning over and muttering, "Keep walking, Charlie!" Apparently, even this great man had his limits. That story cracks me up. Pap-Pap was really devoted to Mom-Mom. He desperately wanted to experience traveling in an airplane, but she was scared to death of flying and never would get on one. They always traveled by train when they came down to Louisiana to see us. He never did get on a plane.

From the time I was a baby until I was four, Dad was still in the Air Force and was stationed at the Pentagon in Virginia, so we got to spend a lot of time with my grandparents. This is a picture of their house in Irvona. I took this on a trip to see Mom-Mom in 2005, but it still looks almost exactly the same as it did when I was a kid.

As a wee lass and unable to pronounce my L's, my mother says I would stalk over to Pap-Pap and demand of him, "Pap-Pap, yemme on your yap!" She said he loved it and would sit with me on his lap for hours. He played the piano, self-taught, and would sit and play and sing for us. He used to sing "K-K-K Katy," a song written during World War I, to me. Here is the chorus, the part I remember best:

K-K-K-Katie, beautiful Katie,
You're the only g-g-g-girl that I adore,

When the m-m-m-moon shines

Over the cowshed,
I'll be waiting at the k-k-k-kitchen door.
I remember this.

One of my first memories is of Easter in Irvona while standing in my grandparent's home and gazing out of the picture window in their dining room with my sister Jen and Pap-Pap. We were looking at a bunny sitting under a big pine tree, and Pap-Pap leaned over and pointed and said something like, "Look, girls, the Easter bunny just for you!" In my four-year-old mind, he instantly became my hero. This man had the real Easter bunny in his yard. He must be someone special!

We moved back to Louisiana when I was five, and we rarely got to see my grandparents. Visits were infrequent, one every five years or so. Then I spent part of my ninth grade year of high school living in Pennsylvania with my great-aunt and uncle. I spent a few weekends with my grandparents in Irvona. Mom-Mom was always worried about me "being bored to death up here with two old people," but I loved it. I'll never forget watching the famous Boston College vs. Miami game with Pap-Pap, the one where Doug Flutie threw his miracle touchdown. "How 'bout that, Kate!" he exclaimed. I have a special place in my heart for that game. I even Tivoed it and burned it to DVD a few years ago when it was on ESPN Classics. It makes me think of Pap-Pap. As you can see, I also keep the picture of him from above in a frame on my desk at home.

Pap-pap died of a stroke in 1993 and is buried in a graveyard in Beulah, right down the road from Irvona. This is a picture I took in 2005 from the hill above his grave site.

Mom-Mom visits Pap-Pap's grave regularly. She is now 95 years old. Fourteen years since he passed away and I don't know if she misses him any less now than she did the day after he died. I know I don't. So, on this day, here's to you, Pap-Pap. I will never, ever forget you.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Meet The Rockers!

So this little vid is pure gold. It's destined to be a source of shame and misery to a teenaged Little Man Clan, particularly Max. God, I can hardly wait!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Surprise! You Got Old!

So, tell me if I'm misinterpreting here, but it seems someone turned thirty!

All the Prudhommians (except Jen who lives up in Ohio), their spouses, and offspring made the trek down to NOLA this past Saturday to attend BDaigle's surprise 30th birthday party. Burt's actual birthday isn't until the 28th, so kudos to Melissa for choosing a date that was sure to arouse no suspicion on his part. The mayor, first lady, Alex, and I all rode down to the big city together in the Vue (which is finally out of the shop *yay!*). Now, I love a surprise party... um, let me rephrase that... I love a surprise party where the honoree is actually surprised. This was one of those. I videotaped the big reveal, and I love Burt's reaction, but the "classic Alex" moment at the :53 mark is pretty good, too. If you listen closely, right after Burt says, "I wasn't expecting this!" you can hear my dear husband say, "That's kinda the point." Sorry, ladies, he's taken.

The party was a ton o' fun. Lots of delicious food and an impromptu concert on the back deck by The Rockers (a.k.a. the Little Man Clan and Noah). I do have video of this spectacular to be uploaded at a later date. I know...the anticipation is killing you! Well, in the meantime, amuse yourself by watching a little movie I put together of Burt's celebratory event.

Happy birthday, Burt! We love you!

The party was great but even better, Mom and Dad had sprung for a hotel room for Alex and me. This was very nice as I was, apparently, the only person to over-imbibe (damn Melissa's beautiful but oversized wine glasses!) at the birthday celebration. It was nice to only have a few blocks to traverse before I could sprawl out on a bed and beg Alex to go find me a Diet Coke. The next morning Dad and I (miraculously for me) got up and went to mass at St. Ann's. Turns out that the 9:30 mass is the children's mass, so there was a lot of off-key singing by the children's choir. This was forgivable and cute since they're kids. But we had to sit behind some chick with an LSU shirt on sporting the slogan "A Southerner's dream, a Northerner's wish" or maybe it was the other way around. Whatever. I had to pray really hard for forgiveness 'cause I rolled my eyes and threw up a little in my mouth when I read it. Maybe they're referring to north Louisianians. I think that's the only way that particular slogan is believable.

Afterward we headed back to the hotel where the baby Jesus had performed some divine intervention, as Alex was not only awake, but had packed the suitcase. Ladies and gentleman, I present to you The Miracle of the Sleep Inn! Then, we headed down to Russell's Marina Grill in West End for some grub. Burt and Byron met up with us there. I loooooove Russell's! I hoovered down two eggs, two pancakes, two pieces of sausage, and two pieces of toast. My hungover tummy was sooooo happy! We had a good time visiting, especially with Burt whom I miss desperately. Ah well, all the more reason to visit NOLA, right?

After brunch, we piled back into the Vue and hit the bricks for Lafayette. My body was cursing me the whole way, and I was so tired I actually tried a RockStar energy drink to try and wake myself up. What a rip off! It tasted like crap and didn't give me a buzz at all. When we hit our little hovel in Lafayette, I was ready to curl up on the couch, but oh no! The Zandy had other plans. You see, a few weeks ago, Ted and Molly offered us a free BBQ grill. Apparently, there was some bad customer service from John Deere, and they tried to make up for it by giving Ted a free grill which he then offered to us because he doesn't like cooking with gas, and, apparently, at Burt's party Alex had asked Ted if the offer was still good to which Ted replied, "First one to get to it, gets it!" Well, this must have set off Def-Con 5 with Alex. The thought of missing out on a free grill sent him into a flurry of activity when we got home that involved me calling our friends Greg and Clelie to see if they wanted our old grill and calling Ted and Molly to see if we could come pick up the free grill. By this point, I was draggin' some serious *ss, but I bravely set off with him to Greg and Cle's to drop off the old grill. Cle offered me wine. How could I refuse? It was a California red for goodness sake! I couldn't be rude. With a slight buzz coursing through my already hungover and exhausted physique, we headed over to Ted's to pick up the grill. We pulled it off without a hitch, and for my fortitude I was rewarded with Cane's chicken fingers. Finally, it was back to the hovel, where I inhaled my Cane's takeout and stumbled off to bed shortly thereafter. All in all, a great weekend. I got my drink on, and Alex got a new grill. For now, the Mottrams are a happy bunch. Stay tuned!

Monday, January 7, 2008

What Is Going Oooooonnnn?

So, seriously, what the hell? 'Member how I wrote about my car? Yeah, the 400 bucks to fix it. Well, turns out they broke a bolt trying to fix it, and it is STILL in the shop. When will I get it back? And I quote, "Sometime next week. No idea when really." Then today, my washing machine broke AGAIN. I just spent 120 bucks fixing the b**ch like two months ago. Did I mention I have to fork over 1,725 bucks for tuition before Wedenesday? WTF?!? WTF?!? WTF?!?

That is all.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Blast from the Past-Double Dip

So, this week I got a comment on MySpace from one of my old college roommates, Todd. Todd is now an ER nurse in Baton Rouge. He's married to the awesome Bethanie, whom he met while rooming with me, and they have two cutie-patooties, Grace and Christian. He let me know he was coming down to Lafayette for a review course for his nurse practitioner board exam, and we decided to get together for lunch. We went over to Antoni's with his buddy and fellow nurse Jody. We had a great time catching up. (I was trying to think of the last time I saw him, and I think it's been over five years. Wow! Time does fly!) You know how there are certain people with whom it seems not a day has gone by since you last saw them, and you're just always super comfortable with them? Well, that's how I feel when I see Todd. I always had really good luck with roommates, but Todd was definitely my favorite. He was a totally laid back guy who loved to party with me, paid all his bills on time, and never caused any drama. He's still that great guy- handsome, funny, honest- with the addition of a beautiful wife and kids. In fact, the only character flaw I can think of is that he's allowed himself to be sucked into the LSU vortex, although he's a graduate of UL. Evidence:

WTF, Todd?!?

I'll have to chalk it up to the fact that he's living in the greater BR area and has been brainwashed. Although this is a major flaw in his otherwise stellar attributes, I'm willing to forgive and accept him, albeit grudgingly, because he's such a cool dude. And meeting up with Todd made me feel all nostalgic, so I broke out the old photo albums and, sure enough, I had a few pics of my boy from the old days on Henry Street.

Payin' the rent- on time!

Awww, cher! Those kids didn't get all their cuteness from Bethanie.

This is one of the more frequent views we had of each other when we lived together. I wouldn't remember when this was but on the back of the photo, I happened to make the helpful notation "Todd passed out after Mardi Gras- 1994." Apparently, I knew even then that frequent and massive consumption of alcohol would eventually cause large memory gaps.

After the fun luch with Todd, I had another trip down memory lane by attending the UL basketball game and watching the Cajuns whoop up on some UNO in fine style. This year's team is really coming around. They're 4-0 in conference. Hope they can keep it up. *fingers crossed* After the game, the mayor and first lady treated us to sushi at Bonsai. As always, it was delish. And speaking of the mayor and first lady, how about another trip back in time?

The 'rents on vacation in Arkansas circa 1994.

And, just a friendly warning to all of my family members, I also found some other great pictures which I will break out in the near future as archival footage. Be very afraid!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Get Ya 2008 On!

So we had a fine time over at Molly and Ted's place celebrating the New Year. For myself, nothing that looked like it might be edible was off limits. I think at one point I pulled a branch off of the Christmas tree and started gnawing on it. Yes, it was gorging on an epic scale (for me) and football, football, football- yard and boob tube versions.

The boys thinking up a game plan. Notice Byron's uncanny resemblance to Bill Belichick.

Max and JT kicking off. This is moments before John zeroes in on Nanny Kate and tries to take her legs out.

Max practicing his poses for future Heisman candidate photo shoot. Looks may be deceiving as Max's forty yard dash speed, unlike most Heisman candidates', is about that of a cement truck if it had legs.

What I imagine is Max's inner dialogue- "After I play football outside, I must come in and watch it on TV, naturally, with my fellow rabid football enthusiast and the one from whom I am cloned, Uncle Charlie."

Emily enjoying a bowl of gumbo. I looked a lot like this with my bowl...except I'm not nearly as cute, and my face was buried in it.

Mary Grace looking pretty in lavender. There is no way you will ever convince me that this is not the cutest bay EVER!

There he is. Our little LSU fan. Oh my God, my eyes! My eyes! The burning! Make it stop!

Johnny T tearin' it up on his new scooter from Santa. As he so eloquently put it, "Look, Nanny Kate! Spiderman scooter! Iz so cool!"

I just think this is one of the cutest pics of JT ever. And Sam took it!

Later, the men put on a fireworks show for all of us. Then Byron and I took all the kids (except Mary Grace) to the movies. Emily was a champion. It was like she had a Ph.D. in Advanced Kid Wrangling. We saw Alvin and the Chipmunks, quite possibly one of the worst movies ever committed to film. Words don't exist to describe it- inane? banal? suicide-inducing? All too generous. Of course, the kids loved it. Max was standing up and dancing to "the music" (and I use that term in the loosest of all possible definitions) while Gabe, Sam, and Noah were bobbing heads and clapping along. All JT was worried about was controlling the popcorn bag. After eating approximately half of it, he leaned over and said, "This is some good popcorn, Nanny Kate." Really? I guess that death grip on the bag and your face planted in it should have tipped me off, JT.
All in all, barring those unfortunate incidents with gumbo, ribs, and brownies on my part, it was a great first day of 2008. Now the second day of 2008? Well, let's just say a phone call from the Saturn dealership telling me it would cost 400 dollars to fix my car was the first clue that those patented Mottram Son of a B**CH!!! moments weren't left back in 2007. Sigh.