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The Love of October

I love October.  As a classic Libra, October is my month.  The stars tend to line up for me in October.  Not in any concrete, observeable way, but more in an inter-balance sort of way. 

Briscoe and I are adjusting to our new city.  Kate and Trav came to visit last weekend, and Kate and I did the Race For a Cure on Saturday morning with Susan, Jennifer, Mary Righton, Stephanie, Lauren and Meredith.  Trav and Briscoe spent the morning bonding.  I told Trav that he could tie Briscoe up outside of stores if he needed to, but just to not leave her very long. 

Trav’s first stop was the Starbucks in the Frances Marion Hotel.  He decided that Briscoe was probably fine to come inside.  So he and Briscoe stood in the long line patiently waiting for their turn.  It wasn’t until he’d been in the store for about ten minutes and made it up to the counter that anyone even noticed that he’d brought a dog inside.  He said the girl behind the counter took one look at her and said – “YOU CAN’T HAVE A DOG INSIDE THE STORE!” 

And he said, “oh, okay, can I have my coffee and we’ll leave!”

Haha.  It totally makes me laugh to think of the scene. 

Then they went to the visitors center, and Trav tied Briscoe up to the bench outside.  He said she sat down and stared at him, and a couple walking past said, wow, that is a great dog!  After Trav got all the maps of downtown Charleston he could carry and came back outside, the couple was still standing there, watching Briscoe be a great dog.  He said his biggest fear was that someone was going to steal her.  She’s adjusting to city life quite well. 

I’m also adjusting, but I’m starting to have that little homesicky feeling where you start to think of all the people you used to drink beer with on a random tuesday night or the seasonal events you are missing.  Then something tragic like a giant tree falling in your parents front yard, and you really sort of wish you were there to see it.

Crazy times, right?  Kate said she just hopes no one is trapped underneath all the limbs.  I get real sad when trees fall down!

But I’m going to an oyster roast tonight and my new kickball team had it’s first game last night, which was super fun.  We lost, but we could have won if the other team hadn’t had a coach.  A coach.  For kickball.  Come on.

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It barely rained at all this April, but we’ve had spectacular flowers anyway.  Once it did finally start raining in May, everything started growing, growing, growing.  Sprouts, shoots, branches, buds, springing up from every empty space.  Cracks in the sidewalk, the space between the slats on the porch, the nook in the tree, chinks in the concrete slab back steps, in the gutters on my neighbor’s house, the storm water gutters in the street.  There is a weed in my neighborhood that is close to two stories tall.  I think it grew up in about two weeks.  Everything is green and growing.

I’ve been making Briscoe run with me recently, partially because the puff has gotten fat, and partially because I’m out of shape, and partially because pretty soon it will be so hot that the puff won’t be able to play outside unless it involves swimming.  She gets really hot.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this blog, and blogs, and life on the internet.  I recently celebrated my sixth blogiversary, and I’ve become a very slack blogger.  I don’t necessarily mind being a bad blogger.  But I realized this morning that more importantly than me not blogging, I haven’t been writing much recently.  I stopped writing on a regular basis at some point last year, I think.  I made excuses that the writing I did at work was the reason for my lack of motivation to write.  My new job doesn’t afford much writing, and I can’t use that as a reason anymore.  And I still don’t have a lot of motivation to write, which makes me sad.

I know there are other reasons I lost my motivation last year.   And I think I know what they are, but I’m not sure they make sense.  There were times I was too miserable to write, and times when I was too happy to write, and I’m inclined to say I was also too busy.  But I hate that excuse.  I don’t care how busy you are, you make time for the things you love.  Like the people who tell me they love to read, but just don’t have time.  If you loved it that much, you would find the time.  Maybe it is simply an over use of the world love.  You can’t love an indefinite number of activities.  For instance, I like to bake, and I like to cook.  But I love to run and I love to read (and I love to drink beer and wine, but that is probably another post).  So when I come home from work, instead of going to the grocery story for lots of fun food to prepare the new recipe I just found that I’m excited about – I come home and put a leash on my dog and go for a run.

That’s not to say that I don’t ever cook, because I do, but mostly because I get hungry and have to eat something after I work out, not so much because I just love to do it.

So maybe I just don’t love writing as much as I wish I did.  It is sort of like running, in that it can feel like work, but you always feel much better afterwards, and the more you do it the more enjoyable it becomes.

In other news, the new Frosty Card is out.  For a dollar you get free frostys for six months!  The best part?  When your little card’s time runs out – you can buy another card for another dollar!  Sigh.  It’s one of the greatest things that ever happened.  Thank you MCG Children Medical Center for making my summer exceptional!

Also, I would really appreciate it if someone would go to the mall and buy me a bunch of new clothes that I would really like – I need some work clothes and some fun going out clothes and a couple of really cute dresses to wear to weddings and engagement parties this summer.  Make sure it is the right size, will be flattering for my figure, is a good color for me, will be appropriate for the occasion, is comfortable, and isn’t too expensive.  Thx.

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Y’all, I’m honestly embarrassed by how long it has been since my last post.  But I do have a few excuses.  I am also well aware that no one wants to hear excuses.  But, 2010 has been kind of crazy so far.  I left my old job, had a few panic attacks about what I was going to do next, and started a new job that I’m really happy with so far.  Somewhere in all of that, I went skiing, spent a week doing hard manual labor for the junior league attic sale (I know the best way to fill up a dumpster with trash), raked over ten huge paper bags full of leaves out of my yard, drank a few liquor drinks and washed a few sandwiches down with beer at the Masters, and celebrated Paige and Jack’s wedding!  I’ve made new friends and spent quality time with old friends, and I can say so far that this year is really shaping up. The flowers have been absolutely unbelievable this year.  I’ve never seen the azaleas show off so.  And guess what I saw today?  A HONEYSUCKLE!  My favorite jasmine of all times!  I got really excited.  Briscoe just kind of looked at me like, Lady, get a grip. You know what else has been amazing this year?  The pollen.  A week or two ago it was basically raining pollen.  There was a yellow cloudy haze hanging over the entire city.  Pollen accumulated inside my car in amazingly gross amounts.  Briscoe turned yellow.  You could literally sit and watch it fall like, like, um, I don’t want to say snow, because it doesn’t look like that, it’s more like dust falling, lighter than sand, but not like snow.  Maybe sort of like ash?  But lighter.  Someone said it looked like someone had dusted for finger prints all over Augusta.  I think that is the best analogy I’ve heard so far.  It falls, but it blows around.  I’ve never seen anything like it, and I’ve never seen it as bad it was this year.  And it turns EVERYTHING yellow.  It’s almost like a nightmare. ANYWAY, the yellow pollen is apparently not the pollen that makes you feel bad, because if it’s big enough to see, it’s too big to inhale, and the pollen you inhale is much too small to see.  The small pollen has been slowly killing me.  I’ve decided to coin this illness as the yellow lung.  No more complaints of allergies.  I’m dying of the yellow lung.  I like to think my voice sounds cooler with the deep raspy tone I’ve recently developed, but we all know I’m not rational about such things. I infinitely prefer the noise my window unit air conditioner makes to my noise machine when I sleep at night.  Like, a bazillion times over.  One day I’ll get my upstairs connected to the central air, but right now I’m sort of loving the window unit.  Is that bad?  Does recycling atone for my window unit sins? My new favorite television show is Mercy.  The people on this show are ridiculously good looking, total alcoholics, and complete trainwrecks.  But I have to say they all seem to have a super sense of humor.  I love a dark drama that also makes me cry laughing.  It happens rarely, if ever.  My other favorite show is Cougar Town.  I didn’t want to like it, but I really REALLY love it.  LOVE. I hope you all had a very pleasant Monday, and that Tuesday is an even better day.  The lamb and I are going to sleep tight.  Sweet dreams!

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Briscoe is at the salon today, getting her hair did.  Her hair was getting so long I was starting to feel neglectful.  I can’t wait to pick her up so Bobby can have a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb.

I’ve been getting some awesome blog love from Betsy and Molly, my sweet Atlanta friends who I never get to see.  But I was lucky enough to see BOTH of them this past week.  It’s amazing how long you can go without catching up with the important people in your life.  Actually, it’s amazing how fast time goes by and how quickly life seems to happen.

Speaking of which, I’m really happy that the time changed last weekend and the daylight last an hour longer every day from now on until the fall.  I love spring, and I love summer, and I’m excited.  Also, I’m starting a new job on Monday!  It’s time for new beginnings, and I’m ready for a new challenge.  Until Monday, I’m working on getting my life put together and cleaning my house for the Masters!  Did you hear that Tiger is going to make it this year?  I don’t know how I feel about it – it’s going to bring a lot more hype to the week, which can be fun, but it can also make everything more difficult for us local people.  But the golf traffic signs are up and the flowers are starting to bloom!

First the red buds were blooming, then the Japanese magnolias and now the Carolina jasmine and the blue star onion flowers have started to bloom and it’s only going to get better from here!

Soon the cherries and the dogwood and the azaleas and wisteria and the whole world will be covered in flowers and everything will smell wonderful!  I can’t wait.

Of course, all this talk of warm weather and flowers blooming ignores the reality of pollen and allergies and bugs.  After playing tennis outside last night in Waynesboro I was violently reminded of the reality of pollen and bugs.  I think the flowers and the pretty weather are worth it.

Happy Tuesday!

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12 Bands of Christmas!

Please visit The 12 Bands of Christmas website and buy a ticket to the show this Friday night and the CD!  It’s going to be awesome and benefits Pediatric Cancer research and honors seven year old Brennan Simkins who is currently battling cancer.  Brennan is an amazing kid and has a wonderful family who deserve all the support in the world!  See you there!

(I can’t get the flyer to post to the blog, I apologize, but follow the link above!  Thanks!

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Listen, just last week I was bragging on you, how awesome the month of October is, and all the wonderfulness that goes along with Fall. 

But ever since, you’ve been sort of acting out.  First you got really hot.  Like, wow.   My car said 101 in the sun one day last week.  I think it was actually only about 87 degrees, but it FELT like 101, partially because I had gotten dressed when it was 65 degrees. 

Then the rain started.  And it’s been raining a lot.  Not every single day, but on the days it has rained, it has poured. 

I haven’t seen any actual rain today, but it’s been dark and cloudy and freezing cold.  I tried to go outside with Briscoe this morning, and it was too cold for me to go outside without shoes on.  Sad.  I always hate it when it gets too cold to be barefoot. 

Today at lunch, when I was warming my numb fingers over the toaster oven while I watched the cheese on my left over pizza start to bubble, I realized that summer was actually over.  I started to seriously consider where all my favorite socks might be. 

I’m planning on the rest of October being full of sunshine and warm pine straw.  Do you hear me Fall?  Try not to ruin things. 

I bought so much candy yesterday.  I can’t even tell y’all how much money I spent on candy at target.  I went to target after work and I was wandering around like a patient in a mental ward, for some reason I was having a real hard time remembering why I was there.  But then I stumbled upon the Halloween section, and I was happy.  Candy weighs a lot.  Natalie and Erin think I’m a terrible roommate for bringing such a ridiculous amount into the house.  I think such comments border on joy stealing.  It’s Halloween!

There are lots of other things I might could tell y’all, but I think I’ll keep them to myself for right now and maybe tell y’all later.

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Happy October!

As most of you know, October is the best month of the year because it is the month I was born.  No really, it has to do with football.  Or maybe it’s the weather.  Or the leaves and the candy corn and the pumpkins (and the pumpkin candy corns) and the smells!  October smells like boiled peanuts, sawdust, burning leaves, funnel cakes, apple cider, damp mornings and warm afternoons.  The kind of afternoons where if you are standing in the sun you are hot and it is bright, but if you walk into a wooded trail  it gets dark and cool.  This is the time of year when I miss the Botanical Gardens more than you can imagine.  I have places I run here in augusta, but none of them compare to the gardens in terms of convenience, safety and pure pleasure.  Sigh.  Athens, I miss you. 

But I will be in Athens tomorrow!  Libby is flying in tonight and we are hitching a ride with Kate and Trav.  I think they will probably drop us off on North Campus with our little coolers so we can go find our friends and meet back up with them later.  Hopefully we can stop for boiled peanuts on 78.  Trav is normally agreeable to such diversions. 

I have been trying to figure out what Briscoe should be for Halloween.  She doesn’t seem to care right now, but I know when the time comes she’s going to be upset if she doesn’t have an awesome costume. 

I was driving back from Waynesboro the other day and there was a Bud Lite truck in front of me, and there was a sticker on the back of it, like where it might say – IF YOU CAN’T SEE MY MIRRORS I CAN’T SEE YOU! – except, this sticker said – HONK AND I’LL PULL OVER.  And it made me think, huh, like, if I’m feeling like a case of bud lite while I’m cruising down the highway, can I just honk and the truck will pull over and hook me up?  It is the best case scenario and the only one I wish to consider for the purpose of such a sticker. 

I’m really happy that it is Friday.  I’m going to now push my personal opinions on you. 

I love the new Spearhead cd, it makes me happy.  I think Lie To Me is the best show currently on television.  Target has great paper towels.  

I’ve been thinking about time zones and earthquakes and how I need to mow my lawn.  Hopefully these will be later posts.  I feel sad for Chicago and the death of Roberta the chickenreally upset me yesterday.  I told my mom about Roberta and she got mad at me and told me not to tell her such depressing things.    Bizzy told me about it.  I told mama it wasn’t my fault Bizzy spread such horrible stories.  Speaking of Bizzy, I’m going to DC next weekend!  Hooray!  I haven’t been to DC in years and years. 

Susan Elizabeth came in town last night and we went to Luigi’s and ate our little hearts out and drank some red wine.  We told lots of secrets and talked about the past and the future and work.  It was awesome.  Then we came home and ate pound cake and drew on the refrigerator and laughed.  Briscoe was really happy.

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The road to hell

I had great intentions of having lots of interesting and funny things to say tonight, but then I got really distracted by this blog – Strange Maps.   I love maps.  That, coupled with the fact that my laptop is on his last leg and the keyboard only works when tilted a little forward, has sort of zapped my creative energy. 

Briscoe is asleep next to me, dreaming of something, because her legs twitch every few moments, like she is running in her sleep.  She and I went on a walk today and she has been very full of herself ever since. 

Sometimes, when I’m browsing facebook, and I notice that someone has something really uncool on their profile, like a guy who lists the notebook as one of his favorite movies or lists hootie and the blowfish as one of his favorite bands (you know, those guilty pleasure books, movies, bands that most people secretly like but pretend like they don’t) I immediately wonder – Is this person really cool and confident in themselves and really doesn’t give a damn that they still listen to the first Hanson album and loves the indigo girls? Or, is this person just dweebie enough to have no idea?  Does this make me a judgmental bitch?  Really, I know people in both categories.  Either is a distinct possibility. 

Oh, I was going to post about Serena Williams and Kanye.  But I’m too tired now and I can pretty much sum it up with three letters.  Boo.  Wait, here is a longer word – Unacceptable.  Childish, immature, and sort of scary.  I feel bad for Venus, she seems much less of a diva and much cooler of a person.  I can’t believe that Serena said that she didn’t understand why the line judge felt threatened.  Really?  Serena is what, like 6’3?  She’s a really large, imposing figure.  But you know who isn’t?  Kanye.  Taylor Swift towered over him.  Do you think that is why he took the mic away from her?  Because she’s 5’11 and had on heels and he’s 5’7? 

Honestly, I’m just always disappointed when super stars misbehave and try to intimidate those around them.  I don’t like it when you pick on the little line judge or the 17 year old county music singer when you are the most imposing female tennis player ever and one of the biggest icons in the music industry.  It seems, tacky.  But I do like the way Beyonce handled it.  She is classy.  

On a happier, lighter note, fall is here.  The mornings have become consistently cool and the fall smells are here.  The warm afternoon intensifies the tea olives and the late jasmine, gardenias and hydragas.  The damp humid, cooler mornings smell of oak bark, fallen leaves and wet grass.  I’ve been drinking a lot of starbucks.  Coffee is so much more enjoyable when it doesn’t make you sweat. 

Sweet dreams children, Briscoe has now rolled over on her back and is snoring with all four feet in the air.  I think I will join her.  It is much easier to count sheep when you have a live one laying at your feet.

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I have been dog sitting for my parents for the past week.  Bo and Bella are kind of ridiculous dogs, but I love them and they have been trying to be cooperative, but mother nature has been making this very difficult. 

I went to sleep early on Monday night, and Briscoe was upstairs with me.  Bo and Bella were downstairs in the kitchen.  All the sudden I hear a CRASH!  It sounded like the baby gate we use to keep the dogs in the kitchen had fallen down.  This happens on occassion and isn’t a big deal, since the dogs are deathy afraid of the gate and won’t climb over it.  The concerning part, was that there continued to be crashing and noise from downstairs.  Not in the kitchen.  When meant, something other than the two dogs I’d left downstairs was presently enjoying the classic decor of the living room. 

I called Travers, he said he’d be right there.  I called Matt, cause he was in the cottage, and he came over to help.  Briscoe was freaking out.  She ran into the living room and I watched in horror as she chased a squirrel up the plaster wall and onto the window scounce. 

Can you see his arm and leg?

Can you see his arm and leg?

Matt got close to the window, and the damn thing fell, bounced on his back on the table, leapt onto the piano, almost knocked over every breakable object in the house before hiding behind the china cabinet.  Smart animal.  Too heavy to move, too fragile to try. 

The dogs were so traumatized.  I had to physically carry Bella into the house and drag her into the kitchen.  She knew the squirrel was still there.  She knew.  Well, two days later, after chewing through a couple of electrical and cable cords, setting the alarm off and otherwise terrorizing the dogs, I came downstairs yesterday morning to find a dead squirrel on the rug in the living room.  Sweet.  Dead things.  Well, we all know I can’t pick up the squirrel or go near it, since the last time I tried to pick up a dead squirrel he wasn’t dead and bit me. 

The dogs had had enough of me forcing them to hang out inside with a squirrel, and flat refused to come inside yesterday morning, so I left them outside.  I put water under the house and made sure they couldn’t get out anywhere.  And I found the biggest spider I’ve ever seen.  bananaspiderI freaked out, got in touch with Josh (Josh is a professor and has his phd in forestry bugs – I saw his dissertation, the man knows his bugs), and anxiously awaited his instructions.  Josh said she won’t hurt me, that it’s what they call a banana spider, they are quite common and spin really pretty webs which they use to catch beetles (read – roaches) and mosquitoes.  He further recommended that I grab a few beetles and throw them in her nest, because she will attack them and spin them into a cocoon before she eats them and that it is “neat” to watch (his words, not mine).  Sweet.  It really made me miss him.  I told Josh I appreciated his expert opinion but that I would not be throwing any beetles anywhere.  I am really pumped that she eats mosquitoes and roaches, so I’ve decided to keep her as a pet.  I’ve named her Hermione and she has been watching the dogs for me while I’ve been at work.  She is the size of my fist and I swear I can lean on her web without it breaking.  It’s like fishing line. 

My life is so national geographic.   

Other happening of note, we had a successful last minute cook out last night, with lots of tomatoes, cheese, beer, hamburgers, chicken, and french fries.  It was a victory of effortless entertaining, low stress, high enjoyment, everyone left happy and full.   Thanks to Kate and Trav for going out of town. 

I have woken up the past few mornings to a chill in the air, which has made my coffee taste better and my over all personal happiness level improve.  My imagination immediately transports me to a morning where I am getting ready to get into a car to drive to Athens for a football game, instead of driving to the office.  Of course in that scenario I would be drinking a cold beer instead of hot coffee. 

But you know what today is don’t you?  GAME DAY!  I want everyone to be watching football tonight.  I hope that everyone has been watching the HBO series Hard Knocks, which is a reality show about the Cincinnati Bengal’s training camp.  I get really sad when anyone gets cut, it’s so depressing for the players to be woken up at 5 am and sent home.  But I really really really love Chad Ocho Cinco.  Love.  Child Please.  I could say it all day long.  Child.  Please.  child.  PLEASE.  child…please.  CHILD please. 

And I know I’m never suppose to say such a thing, but I’m going to say this once and only once.  This is for Ike and Peter and Matt and Claire and Darius (I love your music Darius).  Ahem.  Um.  Give me a second.  Deep Breathes.  DEEP.  Okay.  Here goes.  go cocks!

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The Academy
The Academy
I fell down the top part of these steps one time right as school got out.  I had on a skirt and my overloaded backpack flipped over my head and dragged my down to the landing.  The only thing broken was my 15 year old spirit.

I fell down the top part of these steps one time right as school got out. I had on a skirt and my overloaded backpack flipped over my head and dragged my down to the landing. The only thing broken was my 15 year old spirit.

 

These pictures are of my beloved high school, from the front page of the Augusta Chronicle this morning.  As you can see, I went to the Academy of Richmond County.  My brother and I are 4th generation Musketeers, as is my cousin if I think about it.  This year marks the 225 anniversary of the school. 

Seriously, I love Richmond.  I don’t to be in high school again, under any circumstances, but it was a great place.  Never a dull moment. 

My ten year reunion is coming up in a few weeks and I’m not going to be able to make it because of a conflict with a wedding.  But I really wish I could be there. 

In the early summer, when my teacher friends get out of school, I have a sincerely, strong hatred for them.  It’s not fair! I stomp.  I want to sleep till noon on tuesday.  But then, when they have to go back to school, I remember why I couldn’t handle that.  I would have an extremely hard time returning to work after being foot loose and fancy for two months.  Plus, being up and ready for a class full of other people’s children at 7:30 is not my idea of a good time, although I greatly admire the people who perform this necessary service to society. 

Last night reinforced how much I love my neighborhood.  Natalie, Briscoe and I sat outside on the front porch, and Travers came over, and then Matt and Jenna stopped by, after which I wandered around the corner to see Paige and Jack, and ended up at Helga’s playing trivia with the public defenders – Travers and Natalie and Matt and Jenna were there too.  Helga’s has really awesome french fries.  Leaving trivia, I saw Ross and Caleb, who tried to peer pressure me back into the bar because they obviously had nothing to do at work today.  I held strong and didn’t not re-enter the smoky dive, and endured a few hate voice notes full of their disapproval.  I had some crazy dreams and woke up to a text message from natalie saying she was running out for a biscuit and did I want one?  Of course I do!

It was such a fun night, all so close to home and including so many of my favorite people.  There is a really cute house for rent down the street from us, don’t you want to move in?  We can grill hamburgers and spy on our drug dealing neighbors and Briscoe will lick your toes while you drink a cold beer.

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