Friday, November 30, 2007
I was doing my cool down walk when I almost stepped on a 3 foot snake that was chillin on the sidewalk outside of my house. My first reaction was a little scream that I stopped mid scream with my hand over my mouth. Yes, even this former snake handler can be startled by snakes. I handled mostly conditioned pythons, not wild Texas snakes.
My second reaction, go into the house & grab the camera!
I came back out and the snake had gone into the grass & then quickly slithered into my neighbor's shrub. So, then I had to go get the broom to coax it out of the bush for pictures. I had to take pictures! Duh! (I didn't even know at this point if it was venomous...I know, I'm an idiot.)
I'm not an expert, but it looks like a constrictor of some sort, perhaps a rat snake (not a venomous viper).
How cool is that! And no, I didn't kill it & Jen, I think it would take a MUCH bigger bird to eat this lil guy. ;)
UPDATE: I think it might be a water snake: Nerodia erythrogaster
Today they are happily married and are more and more in love with one another every day.
That couple is Hubby & me.
2. Share 7 (seven) random and/or weird facts about yourself.
3. Tag 7 (seven) random bloggers with this meme and post links to their blogs at the end of this post.
4. Let those who have been tagged know so by leaving a comment on their blog, and telling them where to find information regarding the meme they are now obliged to do.
7. I know I am a big dork & I embrace my dorkiness! But I think I am darn cute dork. P.S. I just learned that dork used to have a not-so-nice meaning: DORK.
I'm not tagging anyone on this one, but if you want to play, feel free.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
(Ack! I still have my dressers to go through....)
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Monday, November 26, 2007
Sunday, November 25, 2007
Saturday, November 24, 2007
This year, Hubby & I spent Thanksgiving with my parents, and the four of us decided to spend it doing what we had done years ago by volunteering at the Superfeast again. H-town now has two MAJOR Thanksgiving meals for the needy & we decided to again do the outside one located downtown. However, this one is heavily sponsored by Waste Management, Walmart, etc, and unfortunately, as we learned, is not very well organized. It was nice to see all the volunteers, but there were just too many of us and not enough to do. Many of those "in charge" were misguiding us.
We spent the first few hours sorting through clothes and putting stupid Waste Management stickers on hats for those who were going to be serving the food. First of all, we were glad to see how much clothes had been donated, BUT so many of the clothes were old & dirty. It made me sad (and kind of grossed me out...why do people donate used underwear? BLEH!). Hubby & I decided we are going to go through our closet this weekend and donate some of our clothes and shoes that are still WEARABLE and CLEAN. Then there was the hat situation. I can't believe part of our volunteering was spent putting stickers on hats just so WM could advertise. How does this help the poor & hungry??? Everyone already knows that WM was the major sponsor. They made it VERY obvious. After we did this we stood around for SEVERAL hours in the cold trying to get some direction on what we could help with next. We were misdirected many times and scolded several times because we were in the way or we were close to violating a health department code. Please people, give us good direction so we can be of use and HELP....that's why we are here....not to be in your way or violate codes....or to help you advertise and make you look good. That's not what this is all about. Speaking of that....
We were FINALLY told how the serving works. The numbers on our name badges (which the people at the volunteer tent had NO CLUE about what they were for) were the number they would call out when it was our time to serve the food and we would only be serving for like 10-15 minutes. My, Hubby's, and my Dad's number was in the 590s or and b/c my mom was in a another line, hers was in the 100s. So, not only would it take forever to get to our numbers, but we would be separated from my Mom, and only serve food for like 10 minutes. How ridiculous is that?
THEN, the most ridiculous part of this experience was when it was closer to the time to start serving the spent over an hour thanking WM, Walmart, this congressman, that congresswoman, this and that "Big Wig", doing WM cheers, Walmart cheers, blah-blah-blah and all the while the poor hungry & cold people were just waiting in line to eat. Again, Thanksgiving is about giving thanks for what we have and this particular occasion was for giving to those in need. It is NOT about boasting and making yourself, company, and your political party "look good." I didn't volunteer to do this to have my 10 minutes on the local news and to put a feather in my hat to make myself look good. I just simply want to help someone in need. That's it.
Many of us volunteers ended up standing around for hours cold and complaining. I decided I did not want to spend my Thanksgiving in that kind of environment and around people with poor and pompous attitudes . I'd rather go to my parents' house, eat turkey, and be thankful for what I have and remember the ethics and morals I have.
We won't be returning to that WM Superfeast again. Perhaps next time we will volunteer at a local church, food kitchen, or Salvation Army or something. And, hubby & I are going to do our charitable part this weekend and donate some clean, wearable clothes.
Anyway, our Thanksgiving Day did turn out to be a very good one. We spent the rest of the day with my parents eating yummy foods near with a fire in fire place & played a couple games of Bocce Ball in the cool, fall weather. I think that morning just made us even more thankful for what we have & for the scruples, morals, and ethics we choose to embrace. We didn't let a bad experience ruin our day or dampen our spirits. It was a learning experience & we chose to turn it into a good day.
There is much to be thankful for. Isn't there?
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
A recipe for you!
1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/3 cup water
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped pecans
- Sift flour with baking soda, salt, baking powder and all spices
- Cream sugar and oil, beat in eggs and pumpkin
- Add flour mixture (from step one) and water, alternating a little at a time
- Add raisins and nuts (* or choc. chips), and mix well
- Bake in two 4x8 loaf pans or one large loaf pan at 350 for 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean (or you can bake it in 4 mini-loaves for about 35-38 minutes, again toothpick should come out clean)
* Raisins and nuts are optional, you can also do mini-chocolate chips instead or the raisins with the nuts, or only the chips.
I am making it tonight with the choc chips!!! mmmm!!
First here are the rules:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
3. Tag 5 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are TAGGED by leaving a comment on their blog.
OK, here comes the randomness......
1. I have met 3 "famous" people thus far in my life. This is a lot of info, so I'll make it my 1-2.
The first person I met was the mailman, Mr. "Speedy Delivery" McFeely, from Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood. I was in high school & met him randomly at a New Year's city celebration in Erie, PA. I know! You are so jealous aren't you? The next famous person I met was Brendan Fraser. This is a funny story. It was when I was living in Singapore. He was there promoting his movie "George of the Jungle". I was with my parents walking to an art museum to see a Leonardo DaVinci exhibit when all of sudden my Dad says, "Hey wasn't that Brendan Fraser? You know, the guy from Encino Man?" He was referring to a man arguing with a women that we had just past on the street. I looked back, and yeah it was him. He kinda stuck out like a sore thumb in this Asian country. "Yeah, Dad, that's him!" He replies, "Well, here take one of my business cards & pen and get his autograph." I say, "But Daaa-aad, he is arguing with that woman. Maybe we should leave them alone." He replies, "Come on. You may not ever get this chance again." "Oooo-kay," I say. I then quietly walk up to him & ask. He looks at me, with shock, and says, "Not right now." "OK. Sorry for the interruption," I then walk away embarrassed. "Well," my Dad says. "Nadda." We then head into the museum and when we are done we sit outside at the museum's cafe to have some coffee & then all of sudden Brendan comes out with his entourage, sees me & stops at our table. He looks at me and says, "Would you still like that autograph?" "Sure," I say. We then chat for a few minutes and he then continues on his way. That women he was arguing with was his girlfriend and now wife.
2. The 3rd famous person I have met is my favorite of the three & also one of my heroes, so she gets her own number. I had the privilege of meeting the famous primatologist, Jane Goodall. She came to Cornell when I was a student there & gave a lecture. Her lecture was amazing! I love her stories and her work with chimps. I got to speak to her briefly after her lecture. It's pretty cool to be able to meet one of your heroes.
3. One of the scariest days of my life was when I was at a slumber party in 9th grade. I have never told my family this, mostly because I haven't thought about in forever & at the time I didn't want them to worry. I was at one of my very good friend's house with probably about 6 - 7 other girls for a slumber birthday party. Well, as we usually did we were up late playing games, watching movies, snacking, & probably talking about boys and doing what young teenage girls do. Well, someone got the idea that we should go out for a walk late that night. We all had our jammys on & snuck out while her parents were sleeping. We were walking along & giggling about who knows what when this jeep pulls up with 2 older guys we didn't know. They were obviously very intoxicated and were trying to get all of our attention. They turn off the car & come out the jeep running after us. We got scared and sprinted back to my friend's house. I don't know if I slowed down or what, but after half us went around the house one way and the other half the other way, I was the last one to go through the back door when one of the guys grabbed my T-shirt. I slammed the door & part of my T-shirt that he had a hold of was caught in the door. I quickly locked the door & begged him through the door to let my shirt go. He kept saying he wanted to talk to me, but I said no way. I didn't know him, he was drunk, older, and I didn't trust him. Finally he let go of my shirt and went away. I think I had also threatened to start yelling & wake up my friend's step-dad. (I can't believe they NEVER woke up through all of these shenanigans.) I guess I could have just taken my shirt off...no one would have seen me. I can't remember why I didn't do that. Anyway, that was very scary. Who knows what that drunk guy could have done. I was very fortunate & learned a valuable lesson that night.
4. Most of you all know this already. When I was living in Singapore, I worked as an assistant zoo keeper in the small mammal and reptile exhibits at the Singapore Zoological Gardens, now known as the Singapore Zoo. I just learned they changed their name. I wonder why they did that? Singapore Zoological Gardens sounds nicer to me, even if it is more wordy. Anywho, my daily tasks involved assisting in cleaning & helping design the exhibits, preparing and feeding the animals, and helping with the visitor photography/education hours with a python. Yes, I got to carry around the pythons they used for the photos. Very cool! My favorite animals to feed were the Giant Galapagos turtles (such gentle giants & very wise...estimated to be close to 100 yrs old), the pygmy mongoose (what a great matriarchal family that was), and most of all the Oriental small-clawed Otters & their BABIES! These babies were sooooo cute. As I approached the exhibit, I would yell, "Babies!" and they would all start squeaking and swim towards to me to be fed. So cute! I loved working there.
5. My final random thing about me is that people ALWAYS say I look like someone they know. I look like their best friend's sister, someone they grew up with, a cousin, "are you so and so's sister?" yadda-yadda-yadda (sorry, watching Seinfeld as I type this). So do I really have that universal of a look? I really didn't think so. I even have a classmate that always calls me by the wrong name at first and then apologizes and says, "you look so much like my best friend's sister!" Man, it's so weird!!!!!!!
So, there ya go! Just a few more tidbits about me you may or may not have known.
Now it's my turn to TAG 5 others:
TAG YOU'RE IT!
1. ETK: Because I know you'll have some great things to tell us & you'll have fun doing it!
2. TT: Because she is such a sweetie & I know she'll get a hoot out of it. I bet she has some great stories tell, too.
3. Sunshine: Because she needs to blog MORE!!!!
4. Bobbie: Because she also needs to blog more & needs more distractions from studying! Mwahh-ahhh-ahhh!
5. Tink: Because I just recently started reading her blog & it is now one of my favs. I am glad Jen "introduced" me to her.
Have fun!!! I am looking forward to your posts. Don't forget the rules!
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
This is Enchanted Rock.
It was at the peak of this rock where hubby proposed to me 4 years ago.
It may be inanimate, but there is much life there & it is where our life together began.
I don't really have any one thing that stands out, so I'll share several pics of mine.
It is my BF's favorite sparkling wine & also now mine.
This scary looking lady is what I believe to be a Banana Spider. She hung out in our back yard for a number of weeks, and YES, we let her stay until she disappeared one day. Spiders are good people....they eat insects like mosquitos!!! (Sorry if this picture freaked you out, but I think it is pretty amazing....says the animal loving dork.)
Have I mentioned how much I love orchids?!?!
Next week's words:
"Assortment" and "Purple"
Your turn to play!
Saturday, November 17, 2007
Friday, November 16, 2007
Thursday, November 15, 2007
"Come to [a rescue] to give, to love, to save a life -- and to mend your own spirit. For [a rescue] will reward you in ways you never thought possible. I can promise you this -- a rescue dog will make you a better person."
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Now don't be thinking I or someone I know did something BAD. I was just feeling whiny & complainy tonight & being "a girl" and was tempted to lay it out all there for some catharsis, but decided to keep it to myself (well, poor hubby had to hear it, too)!!! I had to delete it from my saved file. So, no you don't get to read it. Sorry to disappoint.
So last night I walk into the kitchen and nearly screamed. There was a little wolf spider & probably about 20 TEENIE-TINY little baby spiders spread out all around her on our kitchen floor. I have never seen such a site! Apparently wolf spiders carry their young on their abdomen for awhile after they hatch. Interesting! I don't know if maybe I accidentally kicked her & her babies spread everywhere or if that was their time to leave momma. Anyway, it was kinda cool. I decided to save momma spider & let her outside. However, I had no idea how I was going to catch the babies that were just a little bigger than a flea. How was I to save all them spread all over the floor? Well, this is the part where I would make a bad Buddhist & hopefully God will forgive me. I ended up squishing them. :( Am I a bad human/animal lover?
I know.....I am a HUGE dork. Ya don't have to tell me. ;)
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Here is a cool history lesson for those of you that care &/or like history.
"Old Red has played a vital role in the history of the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston since the school began serving the health of Texas more than a century ago. Officially known as the Ashbel Smith Building, but affectionately called “Old Red” by UTMB students, faculty, staff and alumni, the structure today serves as a grand reminder of the university’s history while supporting its modern mission of education, patient care and research."
"Old Red was completed in 1890 as the home of the University of Texas Medical Department, now known as UTMB. The Medical Department, housed entirely in the new building, opened for its first session on Oct. 5, 1891, with 23 students and 13 faculty.
Designed by renowned architect Nicholas C. Clayton, who also designed many other Galveston landmarks, Old Red was built in the Romanesque Revival style. The building’s colorful nickname comes from the construction materials Clayton chose—red pressed brick, red Texas granite and sandstone.
The Galveston hurricane of 1900, which took 6,000 lives and is still considered one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history, destroyed much of Old Red’s roof but left the main structure standing. When the building was repaired, the original decorative turrets were replaced by skylights and a simplified, less ornate roof line.
Old Red continued to house medical school departments throughout the next decades. By the 1960s, however, the building had begun to show its age. Scientific departments were moved to more modern facilities on campus. Though structurally sound, Old Red was in need of repair.
By the 1970s, caring individuals—employees, alumni and friends of the university—began securing funds to restore Old Red to its former grandeur. The restoration began in June 1982 and was completed in July 1985. The building was officially rededicated in April 1986.
Today, Old Red serves thousands of UTMB students, faculty, staff and visitors. It houses student affairs offices, the registrar’s office, the financial aid office, School of Medicine Alumni Association office, an amphitheater, and the Institute for the Medical Humanities, as well as the anatomy laboratory used in the training of future physicians (and physician assistants & physical therapists...us little guys don't always get the recognition we deserve).
But Old Red is more than an office and classroom building. It serves as a fine example of architectural excellence. Its unique brickwork, massive three-story arches, detailed masonry, arcade of small windows that finish the circular wings and main front, and the ornate portico are testaments to 19th-century craftsmanship. As the oldest medical school building in Texas, Old Red has earned true landmark status, not only through its National Register of Historic Places listing and its Texas Historical Commission marker, but in the hearts of the people who’ve worked, studied and visited it over the years."
The words for next week are:
If you haven't joined the fun, go here for details.
Monday, November 12, 2007
For the second year of the club's existence, Houston Dynamo will be playing for the championship of Major League Soccer after defeating the Kansas City Wizards 2-0 in the Western Conference Championship on Saturday evening at Robertson Stadium.
Friday, November 9, 2007
I can never friggin style my hair like they do, so I had to get a pic. This is probably the best it will ever look.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
My Favorites were from the 90's of course...Vanilla Ice, MC Hammer, Cotton-Eyed-Joe...reminded me of Middle School & High School dances. HIL-ARIOUS! What are your favorites?
Bonus sporks for "Halloween!"
AKA - "Our Italian Sports Car"
He is slowly restoring it & hopefully will look something like this someday.
Blue is MY FAVORITE color.The Alli-mobile in Sapphire Blue
The Hubby & I on our wedding day in Maui 2-12-05
My something blue was in my ring & on my toes
Blue water behind The Kiss & First Dance
More blue in the dresses. Who are these lovely people? (sorry for the wedding pics...the upcoming Maui trip is bringing back the memories)
Unfortunately no pics from this year, but LOVE this pic
My parents "Moon & Ledge" - last year's Halloween.
The words for next week are: "Architecture" & "Red"
Your turn to play!
Monday, November 5, 2007
p.s. - to all my readers...those I know & don't know...commenters & non-commmenters, please continue to read on if you wish. I just think it's interesting to have people from all over the country (and sometimes world) read my mundane blog. :)