Thursday, November 18, 2010

Life Lessons, Big Checks, and Midnight Showings...

Today I was able to go with two of my Junior Auxiliary friends over to Waynesboro, Mississippi, where we accepted a $2,000.00 grant from Jarden Consumer Services. They make warming blankets (Sunbeam, Oster, Mr. Coffee, and CrockPot are some of their brands), so I was able to give a big thank you to all the people who've kept my toes warm over the year. You know I love my electric blanket and heating pad. I have my heating pad on my feet even as I type!

Laurel Junior Auxiliary had applied for the grant a few weeks ago, and I was one of the people who helped write it. It was really fun and really nice to meet all those great people. The employees voluntarily take out money from each of their paychecks throughout the year and then vote on different organizations to receive the grant money. Isn't that a wonderful thing, to have people giving up their money to help others?

I also learned a tough life lesson today. Its really been a lesson-in-the-works for quite some time now, but God certainly answered my doubts on this one in a huge way. I like to think of myself as a kind-hearted person-- I think everyone is a good person, deep down, and that all anyone needs is ton be loved or to experience true friendship. I guess its because I've been super blessed in the friendship department. And I also have a really good first instinct about people. I've only ever been wrong once-- someone I worked with a long time ago. Its a gift, really, and I pride myself on listening to my instincts about people. And I've learned that its a dangerous game to ignore those instincts. But some people are just people you should avoid. They aren't going to do anything in your life but bring you down. I've been lucky that I've gotten this far in life without coming into close contact with someone like that, but alas, my lucky streak has ended. I praise God for showing me this lesson before the situation got worse and I hope I won't forget it the next time I come across someone like this. All I can do now is move along with my pretty great life and try to forget what happened.

I've also learned that some people are just crappy people. I heard the Grinch Christmas song today (yes, I'm already listening to Christmas music, though not full-time, haters). And it occurred to me that there are lots of "life grinches"-- people who just suck. Some of these lyrics are very applicable to people, even when its not Christmas time! I hope that if any of my dear readers have people like these in their life, they will avoid them with every single breath! I don't like to think that God made bad people, and I know that God loves everyone, and therefore, so should I. But the Bible is littered with "bad guys" so its not like they are new or anything.

You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch.
You really are a heel.
You're as cuddly as a cactus,
You're as charming as an eel.
Mr. Grinch.

You're a bad banana
With a greasy black peel.

You're a monster, Mr. Grinch.
Your heart's an empty hole.
Your brain is full of spiders,
You've got garlic in your soul.
Mr. Grinch.

I wouldn't touch you, with a
thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole.

You're a vile one, Mr. Grinch.
You have termites in your smile.
You have all the tender sweetness
Of a seasick crocodile.
Mr. Grinch.

Given the choice between the two of you
I'd take the seasick crockodile.

You're a foul one, Mr. Grinch.
You're a nasty, wasty skunk.
Your heart is full of unwashed socks
Your soul is full of gunk.
Mr. Grinch.

The three words that best describe you, are as follows, and I quote:

You're a rotter, Mr. Grinch.
You're the king of sinful sots.
Your heart's a dead tomato splotched
With moldy purple spots,
Mr. Grinch.

Your soul is an apalling dump heap overflowing
with the most disgraceful assortment of deplorable
rubbish imaginable,
Mangled up in tangled up knots.

You nauseate me, Mr. Grinch.
With a nauseaus super-naus.
You're a crooked jerky jockey
And you drive a crooked hoss.
Mr. Grinch.

You're a three decker saurkraut and toadstool sandwich
With arsenic sauce!

Now that my soul-cleaning is done for the year, I'm getting to the better part of my day-- tonight I'm heading to HARRY POTTER!!!! Emilee and Mallory and I have tickets for the 12:02 show! Its going to be so wonderful! I love love love Harry Potter-- those books are so creative and so interesting and its like the characters are my brothers and sisters and I'm just so darn proud of them!!! I love you dear Blog-readers and I am sorry for my above ranting. Probably most of you already knew that lesson, but I'm a slow-learner and I abhor change, so it takes me a bit longer. Don't bother to call me early in the morning! I'll be napping cause its going to be a late night! Nothing like Harry and friends to cheer me up!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Life is full of interuptions and complications...

Love Actually is my most favorite holiday film. My second most favorite holiday film is "Christmas Comes to Willow Creek", starring the Duke brothers themselves, Tom Wopat and John Schneider.

I have this 1987 classic on VHS, complete with the original commercials-- taped by my granddaddy years and years ago, and given to me years later! I LOVE it! What's not to love about two brothers and one teenagers taking a truck full of gifts and supplies to a fledgling Alaskan town-- stopping along the way to fall in love, gamble in Reno, deliver a baby and meet an angel. Why are you still reading this and not on-line buying this movie right now????!!! Its the best!!!

Back to the point of my post. Love Actually. Best. Holiday. Movie. Ever. Perhaps Best Movie Ever. Certainly best cast ever! Everyone good is in this movie! It came out when I was in law school and it reminds me of a wonderful time in my life and its one of the only movies I remember watching in the theater three times (in Tupelo, nonetheless!) I love it-- I love thinking about how many different ideas of love are out there-- romantic, familial, friendship, all different types. I'm really lucky to have lots of people I love in my life (all you readers!!!!)

Last night Emilee and I had a "Date Night" and watched Love Actually in order to get in the Christmas spirit! After reading my previous blog about the Paula Deen Creamy, Dreamy Spinach and Bacon dip, Em pointed out that its not a good idea to make a new recipe for a ton of people without trying it first! Being the wonderful cousin she is, Em graciously offered to be my guinea pig and let me make the dip for her last night. I did and it was WONDERFUL!!!!!! Its a totally fantastic recipe-- it smelled so good while it was cooking that I could barely stand to wait for the timer!

Doesn't that look fine? And we used a big ole spoon to get that stuff-- as Em says, "we weren't playing!".

We ate it with corn chips and it was all we ate-- but it was a great meal! We even forgot to make the homemade hot chocolate that Em loves!

I hope that last night was the beginning of a fabulous holiday season! Em and I both love Christmas and I think this year, more so than in the past, we really want to be able to relax and enjoy this time of year, and I believe we both deserve a really fabulous Christmas. And Christmas is all about being honest and being with the people you love. I'm super blessed to have great people surrounding me, and I'm lucky that they can see me and my life much more clearly than I can. If only I'd listen to them!! So, I'll close this post by being honest about how great a person my dear cousin Em is-- she's more than a cousin to me, and I'm so proud of how wonderful and fantastic a person she is and has become. She's so incredibly strong and she's my person to lean on when I'm not so strong! I love you, Em...

Friday, November 12, 2010

Beatles, NOLA and My Penny...

Last Friday, right about lunch, I got a text message from my friend Penny, saying she has free tickets to the Beatles Tribute Broadway Musical, Rain, in New Orleans. I've posted about my love of that city and my love only grows stronger with time! Like I've said before, I never really cared for NOLA as I was growing up, when we took field trips to the Aquarium and places like that. I've been a few times as an "adult" and didn't really warm to the city those times either. But since my friend Penny moved down there two and a half years ago (wow, time flies!), I've really enjoyed exploring the city, and I only wish I could go down more often!

So, when Penny called, it only took a few minutes for me to "get a wild hair" and decide to head down there! Penny and I got all dressed up and went to a place called Slice-- its on St. Charles and I've noticed it many times, so I was excited to get to try it!

It was yummy! We split the bruschetta, and I had a slice of the salmon/capers pizza and the prosciutto/mozzarella. It was yummy. I forgot my camera so I don't have pictures!

Next we headed to the theater for the Beatles Musical. Free tickets!! We had a great time and I really enjoyed the musical-- I didn't get to take many pictures, so this is a small picture from the website. The band came out, all decked out in their Beatles outfits and sang some fabulous music! I hate to admit it but Penny and I didn't know all their music, but we had a great time dancing around with all the old people in the audience!

The next morning, we hit up a fun diner on Magazine Street.

Slim Goodies is ALWAYS super packed which is one reason we really wanted to go-- obviously its a pretty good place! We got there just in time and I've decided it is a fabulous new place for us to try when I'm down there! Here are some pictures:

Its got a cool diner atmosphere and the walls are covered in polaroid pictures of customers!

Here I am, contemplating the meaning of life and what to eat for breakfast (there were a LOT of choices and too many choices overwhelm me!!)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A clearer picture...

It is my understanding that some people don't really think that today's monster roach confrontation was that big of a deal. I believe those cynical people don't really understand the details of the situation (heh, "the situation"!). So, I've taken it upon myself to "recreate" the moment so you can all get a better idea.

The pumpkin head is my head and the little orange guy is the monster roach. This way you can see exactly how close we were to each other. Parker refused to be in the picture. She thought the lighting wasn't very flattering.

Parker > Lassie

So this morning, just a few minutes ago, Parker saved my life. It was horrible, terrible, awful. Picture it- Mississippi, 10:00 a.m., sitting on my couch, eating cold pizza for breakfast (Its Veterans Day, don't judge me-- J. Dawn Carr Law Office is closed!!), watching America's Next Top Model. Parker is, as usual, begging for food and I, like a good mom, am rewarding her with lots of scraps.

Suddenly, something catches her attention, out of the corner of her eye. She moves to the side. Looks up to the back of the couch. I, sensing something is wrong (since Parker and I are so attuned to each other), turn as well. And that's when I see it. Mere inches from my shoulder.

A HUGE ROACH. I'm not sure if it was an FR (Flying Roach, as we call it at the Carr House). I jumped up, throwing the blanket, the clicker, my phone in all different directions. Parker jumps up, I jump up, I start screaming and dancing around like an idiot. I HATE roaches. And to think this roach was was crawling AWAY from me, so it had been EVEN closer. I cannot explain the dread and disgust in my mind, even now, much later. Its a nightmare.

Luckily, I have finely honed reflexes and I was able to grab a show and kill this monster before it got away. I keep feeling phantom roaches all over me and I had to run around and scream for a few minutes afterward. I'm pretty sure Parker thought I was ridiculous!!!

This is the dead roach...


My new lucky shoe...

Readers, this isn't the first time I've had a horrible brush with a monster like this. When I first moved to Laurel, I lived with my Aunt Ju for a few months till I found an apartment. I lived in her attic bedroom, which is a super cute room with twin beds pushed against the wall. The sloping ceiling comes right above the beds, but it was perfect for me since I'm short!!

I'd seen several roaches in the attic but I'd kept my composure and killed them. No amount of begging my mean old aunt for an exterminator visit would warm her cold heart.

One night, I'm sleeping comfortably in my twin bed, and all the sudden, I feel something on my face. I brush it off, thinking it is my imagination, and I decide to get up, go downstairs to the bathroom. I come back upstairs and I cannot shake this strange feeling, so I turn on the light. And there, sitting on my pillow, right next to where my head had just been, was a huge FR. The same FR, I will go to my grave believing, had dropped onto my FACE just seconds before.

Instead of panicking, I merely screamed, jumped around, grabbed my cell and my sleep machine and ran downstairs and slept on the couch. My wicked Aunt didn't even care, and after a couple nights of sleeping on the couch, she told me I couldn't even do that anymore, it was messing up her couch and that I had to go back upstairs to my roach room. She's freaking evil. She never even offered to call an exterminator for me! I'm pretty sure when she has a bad day, this is the story she thinks of to cheer herself up.

So, dear readers, I hope your morning was better than mine. But luckily, I have the sweetest, most brave girl in the world, watching over me!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Its the most wonderful time of the year...

Its come to my attention that this blog didn't post earlier this week when I originally wrote it-- so here it is-- better late than never!!!

Hey readers! I'm busy at work today, but I'm taking time out of my busy schedule to update! Things have been busy these last couple weeks and I cannot really explain how positive and upbeat I am feeling about the upcoming weeks and months! I'm so incredibly blessed to have lots of friends and family who love me and treat me wonderfully and care about me-- I'm a lucky girl! I forget to tell you guys that sometimes, but you all mean the world to me. I'm so blessed that I can tell you guys all the stupid things I do, and, when you finish laughing hysterically at my idiot decisions, you still love me. Of course, this message is only for readers of this blog, so if you are my friend and you are NOT a blog reader, you'll never know how much you mean to me and how much I love you. And you are a total loser for not reading my blog. As Barney Stinson would say, its gotten a lot better.

Ok, enough of my rambling on and on about my wonderful friends and family.

Here are some things going on in my life.

Laurel Junior Auxiliary-- we have a lot going on in the coming weeks and I'm really looking forward to most of it! This Friday, we have the Very Special Arts Festival-- it is in conjunction with the Lauren Rogers Museum Guild and the Arts League and its so wonderful. Its a huge arts and crafts festival for children with special needs. Ellisville State School brings a lot of children, but kids come from all over South Mississippi and they really enjoy it. I think it is my favorite part of being an LJA member. Its just really uplifting, and reminds me how incredibly lucky I am and how important it is to give back to people in any way I can. I don't have a ton of money to donate (or really ANY money!) and I don't necessarily have a ton of special skills wherein I could make beautiful toys out of spiderwebs, duct tape and glitter, or nurse a person back to health or anything. I'm not even totally sure of what my special skills are. But I can hand children chalk and let them make a humongous mural on the wall, and then, at the end, sweep up all of the chalk from the floor. Even I can handle that and I can laugh when the kids laugh and hold back tears when I see how much fun they are having. I mean, even I can handle that!

We also have the Fall Social coming up next Tuesday-- my Provisional class and I will be doing all the cooking for this rather large get together of all past and current members. Yes, to be clear, that means if you are a past or current member of LJA and are planning to attend next week, you should avoid the Creamy, Dreamy, Spinach, Onion and Bacon Dip. Cause I'm making it. This is what is should look like. Its a Paula Deen recipe so it literally has a pound of bacon and 3 packages cream cheese (yuck!) and mayonnaise. So it's low-fat.

Also, in typing that last sentence, I've just realized that MAYONNAISE has two "N"'s. Is that right? I've always spelled it "mayonaise". Although, to be honest, I'm not sure I can ever remember typing or spelling it. So, maybe I don't know what I'm talking about. Ugh. Its gross.

Ok, with that totally random, unimportant last thought, I'm signing off. There is work to do.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Its November, folks...

So, its November. Um, somewhere, in my mind, its really like the end of August-- I've been in a fog the last few months, apparently, and it just doesn't seem like its November already. I'm finally coming out of my fog and realizing its getting cold, my winter clothes are still packed up, and I've not even thought about Christmas shopping!! But, this is my favorite time of the year and I fully intend to enjoy every last second of it!

A couple weekends ago, Mom, Aunt Ju and Emilee and I went to Mitchell Farms, in Collins, Ms, about 20 minutes from Laurel. We had a fabulous time!! I'm just now getting around to posting pictures but its more of a Thanksgiving-y thing than a Halloween thing, so I'm still safe.

I'd never been to Mitchell Farms before but apparently it is THE place to head during this time of the year! There is a petting zoo, corn maze, riding tour, cotton patch, corn jump for kids, food, and all sorts of other stuff, especially for kids! We had a great time, even without any kids!

We had to buy tickets, but I don't know how much they were-- ask Mom! But with the ticket, you got a free pumpkin!

Sweet cousins:

Mean moms who took off in their car and left their sweet daughters to try to find the place themselves and laughed maniacally when we missed the turn (since we'd had no idea where this place was!):

We took a tour of the whole farm-- we got to going pretty fast at one point:

The corn maze-- I'm totally isolated here-- I felt like I was at Ron's house in Harry Potter, hiding from Bellatrix LeStrange. No, actually, the corn maze, which was a great idea, was a bit of a letdown-- it was so dry and dusty and you could pretty much see everyone around you. Em is ahead of me, right around that bend, so I wasn't really alone!

There was a really pretty cotton patch! Em was impressed with my knowledge of the cotton gin and Eli Whitney. Thanks, 9th grade Mississippi History!

Em carrying two pumpkins back to the car-- it was a long, tough walk. We thought we could make it without a cart, but by the time we got to the car, we were about exhausted! Its hard carrying two big ole pumpkins!!