If you can't make it better you can laugh at it. ~Erma Bombeck


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Ike II - Lessons from a Storm

Lesson 1. When you see an Emergency Services truck from California 3 days before a storm is going to make landfall, after puzzling over why it's there and taking a moment to snap a picture, PAY ATTENTION and get ready for something bad about to come down.

Lesson 2. Remember that if you are on the dirty side of the hurricane, 100+ MPI winds will be coming at you from the north. DO NOT OPEN THE NORTH-FACING FRONT DOOR THAT YOU DIDN'T THINK ANYTHING WOULD HIT BECAUSE IT WAS PROTECTED BY THE BRICK ENTRYWAY SO YOU DIDN'T PUT A BOARD UP TO FIND OUT WHAT THAT HORRIBLE ROARING NOISE IS AND WHY WATER IS LEAKING IN AROUND THE STAINED GLASS SEAMS. YOU WILL GET KNOCKED ON YOUR BUTT. You will then have to crawl against said strong winds in order to get it closed again before your house explodes from the pressure. (Wish I'd had my camera handy for that one!)

Lesson 3. Make friends with the guy on the corner so he doesn't think you are a looter when your dog gets loose and runs into his now unenclosed back yard.


Lesson 4. TRIM YOUR TREES! If a storm comes through you could very well get burried under an avalance of branches if you don't. That is a 2-story house, folks. The debris is literally piled up to just below the second story windows. No, thank God, this is not my home.

Lesson 5. DEEP-GROUND-WATER YOUR TREES SO THE ROOTS GROW D.O.W.N. If you don't, they will grow out to the sides looking for whatever surface moisture they can find. This leaves them with very shallow root systems that won't withstand strong winds. They make a special cool waterer thingy that allows you to do that. It looks like this. Not pimping that particular product, but wanted you to know where you could find what I'm talking about.

Lesson 6. Power lines are a LOT stronger that they look.

This pole snapped off in the middle, yet the lines are still holding the cross part.

This one is leaning at such an angle that I am amazed it hasn't fallen yet, but the lines are holding. Good thing for that building! That's a small parking lot.

Lesson 7. A clothes line doesn't have to be a "line" at all. A pole, a fence, a ladder, and some hangers work just fine. The clothes are scratchy and the towels are stiff, but they are clean, by jingies!! (You cannot click to enlarge this one because I have no desire to have my undies sprawled across your whole screen. And neither should you!)

So, that's pretty much it for now. I might have some more lessons to add before we get our power back on sometime later this week... hopefully sometime later this week... PLEASE GOD! SOMETIME LATER THIS WEEK!!!
Love to all and thanks for keeping tabs on me through all of this. Your emails and text messages have kept me going.

Friday, September 12, 2008


The expression on her face and the plaque just about cover what we are all feeling right now at our house.

We are staying. The wind and rain don't scare me. The possibility of rising water does. However, we are 55 miles north of Galveston in an area that was deemed voluntary evacuation only. Most of our neighbors are staying, also. Hopefully, by the time the water gets here we won't have more than a few inches in the house if any at all. What is really strange to me is that only about 6 houses in the whole 200+ subdivision have boarded up their windows. I didn't even see any with duct tape on them to keep them from totally shattering.

I've signed up on Twitter and (if I can friggin' figure out how - geesh I feel stupid!) will try to keep updating on my phone as often as possible if we lose power so I can't do it online.

Please keep us and the whole Gulf Coast region in your prayers. This is gonna get really ugly before it's over.

And if, God forbid, the worst should happen (no I'm not expecting it to or being morbid, just covering bases), shed a few tears if you must, but then go have a party and remember how much this crazy old woman loves life and all her kids. Especially the three that are mine and the one that should have been.

Peace, Blessings, and Dry too tootsies to all.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Important Notice from the DTD

Contagious Neck Rash Identified by Dumbbutt Teenagers Department (DTD)

(Illustration only - not an actual picture of this particular outbreak)

Houston, Texas (September 9, 2008) - Damama T, Zookeeper and Warden President and Founder of the DTD, today issued a health alert to the parents of all teens. The DTD has uncovered a potential health threat to teens as evidenced by a recent and unexplained outbreak of Purple Neck Rash syndrome in the home offices of the DTD. The malady seems to primarily effect females between the ages of 17 and 18 and usually appears after bouts of exertion such as going out on a date. While males may also be effected, the DTD has not yet seen any first-hand cases.

In an effort to stem the spread of this unsightly and often painful disease, Damama T has issued official warnings to the male most recently in contact with the DTD's resident disease carrier citing the need to refrain from applying any oral pressure to the effected area thus causing further spread of the rash. Doing so could potentially result in the parent's need to take whatever steps are necessary to contain this outbreak, up to and including indefinite quarantine of the afflicted teen.

Any parent observing Purple Neck Rash syndrome should use extreme caution when examining the discoloration as the teen carrier may exhibit signs of excessive agitation. Continued attempts at examination may incite the patient to bellow that the examiner is "out of your flipping mind and too stupid to know what you are looking at! IT IS JUST A RASH!" Additionally, upon learning that the DTD intends to notify the boyfriend other potential victims of the appearance of the rash, the teen may lose total control and resolve into a fit of the hysterical screaming mimis. Parents should not take this behavior personally as it is a normal part of the progression of the disease.

The discoloration will resolve on its own within one to two weeks, usually leaving no permanent scarring, but this does not mean that the patient has acquired an immunity to the disease. Reappearance of PNR is not uncommon as teens tend to regularly cross-contaminate each other. However, with any luck the fear of future extended quarantines may provide enough behavior modification to reduce the number of outbreaks.

For additional information on why teens do what they do, the DTD highly recommends that parents read: Teenage Brain Development. This scientific article has played a huge role in the reduction in the number of murderous thoughts experienced by the staff of the DTD. Hopefully it will help others, too. (For real.. no joke. Go read it!)

Adolescence is perhaps nature's way of preparing parents to welcome the empty nest. ~Karen Savage and Patricia Adams, The Good Stepmother

Sunday, September 7, 2008

NOBama for this Mama

After Bug’s, Lady N’s, and now Lady T’s comments, I began to wonder if I’d given the topic enough consideration before publishing that last post. I have, therefore, spent a good part of the day researching the exact crux of this unsavory topic. While the questions about why Obama orchestrated the demise of the Illinois bill may never be fully understood (especially in light of his using the chicken way out of taking a stand by voting "Present" instead of Yay or Nay), there is one thing that is crystal clear: Barack Hussein Obama supports, with all his heart and soul, the ‘‘Freedom of Choice Act’’. And according to his website, he will pass it into law as quickly as is humanly possible should he become president. And the Freedom of Choice Act allows for the post-delivery murder of infants.

While I personally could never choose abortion (a fact for which Bug should be eternally grateful), I have always defended a woman’s right to make that decision for herself. With one caveat: I don’t think the option should be available past the first trimester unless there are specific, extreme, extenuating circumstances. I have always based my decision on the fact that somewhere between the 13th and 16th weeks of gestation, the tiny being, whether you want to call it a fetus, a baby or a blob, begins to feel pain (Read the first paragraph under ANATOMICAL AND FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR PAIN PERCEPTION for a quick overview of this topic). As a mother, hell as a human being, the thought of causing any other living being pain is simply unacceptable. (We even mandate the humane (pain-free) killing of animals and death-row inmates by law!) And once you understand the stages of development of a fetus, I personally can’t understand how anybody could choose abortion. Especially after the 12th week.

Even with this personal opinion, I have never judged any woman who chose to have an abortion whether out of selfishness, desperation or ignorance of other possible options. I have counseled women, some my own “kids,” while they cried and agonized, trying to decide what to do. I’ve supported them through the days, weeks and months after the abortion as they worked through the process of grieving and the reevaluation of their lives. (Yes, even the ones who knew in their hearts that they’d made the right decision for their own lives went through some sort of grieving process whether it was for the lost child or their own lost innocence.)

I’ve walked with them through what I call the Wondering Times: I wonder what he/she would have looked like in that outfit. I wonder if he would love baseball as much as my dad does. I wonder if she would have wanted to play dress-up like my niece does. I wonder... I wonder... I wonder... and on it goes even for those who KNEW they’d ultimately made the right decision for their own lives. Not that they all would have made a different decision even now, but there is still (at least for everyone I’ve worked with) a bit of pain in living with the aftermath of that final decision.

That pain is often magnified 1000 fold upon the birth of their first full-term baby when the reality of that long-ago decision blasts them full force in the heart. The only thing more painful than being the person who has to watch her suffer through the guilt and grieving process all over again is being the woman who has to live through it. But none of this is why I’m revisiting this topic. I am back here again to talk about why Obama’s stand on the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) concretes my decision to NOT vote for him.

I have a MAJOR MAJOR MAJOR MAJOR issue with the provision allowing a woman (as stated on page 8, lines 6, 7, and 8), “...(C) to terminate a pregnancy after viability where termination is necessary to protect the life or health of the woman...”

It's that word "viability" that sticks in my craw. By the document’s own definition on page 7, lines 10-15:
10 (3) VIABILITY.— The term ‘‘viability’’ means
11 that stage of pregnancy when, in the best medical
12 judgment of the attending physician based on the
13 particular medical facts of the case before the physic-
14 cian, there is a reasonable likelihood of the sustained
15 survival of the fetus outside of the woman.

Did you read that? “...there is a reasonable likelihood of the sustained survival of the fetus outside of the woman.” And this document is proposing that it should be killed even though it has a “reasonable likelihood of ... sustained survival....” And by the way, doesn’t a “fetus” become a “baby” once it’s outside the woman? Yet FOCA would allow for the post-delivery death of that baby if its life might cause some sort of problem to “the life or health of the woman...” This begs the question, WHAT HARM CAN IT DO THE WOMAN AFTER IT’S OUT OF HER that would be serious enough as to require the baby’s death??

It’s not MURDER, though, says FOCA – it’s “abortion” even though the baby was viable at the time it was removed from the uterus. Really? If it comes out alive and has a reasonable likelihood of survival, but is then allowed to lay there and die instead that's not murder?? Well then what does that say about the teenagers who give birth in bathrooms and put the baby in the trash can? What’s the difference? Is the scared, desperate teen’s act a crime simply because there was no doctor there to get paid for having induced labor so the child could be left to die? Why should these girls be raked over the coals in the press, be more traumatized and ostracized by the public outcry over their heinous choice and then sent to prison to PAY for their CRIMES, but the women who choose to pay a clinic or a hospital to kill the kid are allowed to go home and get on with the rest of their lives? Can anybody explain that to me??? WHAT. IS. THE. DIFFERENCE??? If one is OK, then they both should be. If one is not, then NEITHER SHOULD BE ACCEPTABLE!!

Second, I have a HUGE problem with the fact that they want to make this whole thing retroactive: (Starting on page 8 and continuing on page 9.
24 This Act applies to every Federal, State, and local
25 statute, ordinance, regulation, administrative order, deci-
1 sion, policy, practice, or other action enacted, adopted, or
2 implemented before (emphasis added), on, or after the date of enactment
3 of this Act.

Plus.. P.L.U.S. they want it to be enforceable by Civil action:
Page 8:
13 (c) CIVIL ACTION.—An individual aggrieved by a vio-
14 lation of this section may obtain appropriate relief (include
15 ing relief against a government) in a civil action.

Guess what, folks. If they make it retroactive and allow “relief...in a civil action” it could be interpreted to mean that any woman who feels that her civil rights according to this new document have EVER been violated can go back and sue the government. I know I'm excited about the idea of having MY tax dollars be paid out to every woman who ever made the choice to have an abortion even though it was against the law at the time. Hey, how about if we just go ahead and legalize ALL killings and then pay off the murderers who were "unlawfully imprisoned" by that bad law??? (Please note: In case you didn't notice it, the last two sentences were dripping with sarcasm when they came out of my head!)

Just one final note to all my kids: I applaud the fact that you are free thinkers and speak your mind. However, I also require that you all be polite and mindful that you (like your Damama) are not always right. As always, you are welcome to state your opinion as long as you don't go on any personal attack missions.

Ok - I'm done ranting. For tonight.
Peace, Blessings, Wisdom, Patience, and Love to all.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Military Wives deserve so much respect...

Please head over to Brandy's corner of the blogverse and read her post "What is a Military Wife?" WOW! What food for thought. It makes me so much more grateful for my life. I am awed by the sacrifices made by these men and women to ensure that the rest of us can have our dull, trying, relatively normal lives.

Thank you, Military Wives. I, for one, couldn't do it.

Peace, love and many, many blessings and prayers for the swift and safe return of your loved ones.


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