Thursday, July 31, 2008

Lots of Lasts

Last night was our last alone in this house. Now family is trickling in and it will be busy, busy around here until the lot of us fly/drive North next Wednesday. I had lunch with Hidalgo colleagues a couple of days ago and as we were saying our goodbyes at the end of the meal, it occurred to me (and them, no doubt) that I will very likely never, ever see these two people again. Bittersweet. Even though my style of late has been to complain about this part of the world, there truly are people and things I will sincerely miss about living here. But just as I begin to get a little misty about all the "lasts" Andrew and I are about to experience this week, I will remind myself that each signifies a happy and exciting "first."

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ride the Maddie!

I'll reiterate from May 22's post: God bless these dogs.

Disclaimer: Andrew will no longer be allowed to torture Maddie go for Maddie rides, now that I have captured the moment in photos.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Been Through a Hurricane? Check.

It was a rough couple of days/nights, but we are good. If I never experience a hurricane again, it will be fine. I know Dolly's Category 2 status probably sounds like peanuts to Floridians or a select few who honeymooned in the Caribbean last August (wink, wink HL), BUT, being all alone here made things pretty scary all day yesterday and especially all night long. The intense wind, rain, tornado watches, and sound of numerous things hitting our home was extremely unsettling. Luckily, though, the morning light brought good news: no damage to us or our house!!! Neighbors on either side of us lost trees and entire sections of fences. My hibiscus is toast and we had a little garage leak, but it's all quite manageable and fine now. Andrew, the dogs and I are counting our blessings today as we try to get back on track with the original business at hand - packing! Oh, and I had to throw in that photo of our neighbor's pants on the line yesterday. Think they got dry?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Calm Before the Storm

Took this yesterday evening as all the neighbors were out making their preparations.
How could something so beautiful precede something so nasty? The rain just started here at 8:00 am CST, so here we go....

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Everyone Loves a Challenge....

Hello, Dolly!?!?!?!?!
Just in case the moving preparations weren't quite challenging enough for us, the fates have thrown a hurricane into the mix. The next couple of days/nights will be quite interesting. I plan to hunker down in our downstairs half bath with the dogs and baby. I'll post updates if there's power. Bye for now - we're off to get sandbags!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dog Biscuits: Any Nutritional Value for Homosapiens?

Our boy is becoming a quick connoisseur of dog food, and has recently expanded his palate from kibble to dog biscuits. He got the perfect opportunity to do this today as we left the bank drive-thru. The teller had sent through a couple of milkbones (brought back good memories from when I was a teller in college) and apparently Maddie left hers on the seat a moment too long. After noticing Andrew's sudden silence, I looked back to see this. Ah, fond memories of another favorite movie: Mel Gibson's milkbone-munching in Lethal Weapon.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Captain Pavement

How is it that the girl who grew up running barefoot in the hills of West Virginia (yes, that stereotype is accurate) has given birth to someone who DESPISES GRASS??? Please tell me how this is possible. Andrew adores being outside, even in this ridiculous climate, and he strongly admires dirt. However, our St. Augustine grass is not his thing. Granted, it is pretty dense and occasionally high, but he is always weirded out by it. He happily plays on our patio, including crawling around - OUCH - and then when he approaches the grass, I am quickly reminded of the scene in Field of Dreams where the doctor can't leave the field or else the fun and youth will suddenly end. Andrew stops dead in his tracks. Here are some photos I just took, humbling as they may be.....

My truck is in the grass - crap.

Um, excuse me... I am in the grass, Mom.

Ugh - grass on my foot.

Oh, the humanity!!! Keep it off my knee!

OMG!!! It touched my elbow!!!!!!!

Gotta get outta here.

Perhaps this yoga pose will help keep the grass off of me.

Forget you, truck - I am outta here.

Thank God... Captain Pavement prevails!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Good News and Bad News

Which do you want first? Since you can't really choose, I'll get the bad news out of the way. If you want the good news first, scroll down!

:O( The Bad News
In a Toyota bursting at every seam, Jon heart-wrenchingly pulled out of our driveway for the very last time this morning at 8:30. Both of us were crying. Just so sad. Andrew was blissfully oblivious, but did wave bye-bye. The dogs were mostly just concerned with breakfast at the time. The hardest part is that we don't know when we'll get to see each other again. Being away from Andrew for more than a few hours is just about enough to murder a person, so that will be especially tough on Jon. He is moving in with my cousin in York, SC and will make the 1.25 hour commute down to Blythewood almost every day, and crash on his new colleague's couch maybe a couple of days a week. When Andrew and I do sell this house, some family members will come down and help us make the trek up to SC and get settled.

Now, in the hopes of lightening the mood just a little with a segue, here are some remarks about a couple of earlier posts:
  • Jon mentioned that I am a nerd for referring to the moon as a waxing gibbous. He had never heard those words before and said that no one refers to the moon by its phases. He also pointed out that I had to look up the phase before posting, which I did. :O) BUT, I found the really cool phase thingy to add to the site, so all was not lost.

  • No, Jon was not driving in the Dad video. We were idling in an ice cream drive-thru lane! It is funny, because the video really does look as if he were driving. Ah, just another possible CPS call.

  • Thanks to everyone who weighed in on their Christmas card philosophies. The poll verdict is in: more than 70% of my blog readers allegedly do mail cards to folks with the sole purpose of sending along holiday cheer. All humanity is not lost, I suppose.

:O) The Good News WE ARE, AS WE SPEAK, UNDER CONTRACT FOR THE SALE OF THIS HOUSE!!!!! This makes things a little less dismal around here. Our realtor called this evening with the news that the folks who attended the open house last week had made an offer (one in which we DO NOT lose any money, mind you). Andrew and I dropped everything, of course (which included a toddler's dinner - a MAJOR sacrifice for all) to rush to her office and accept the offer. Since Jon is in Lafayette tonight, we faxed the paperwork to him and it's done. Now, before you get your hopes all up, the buyers still have 14 days to decide they don't like something and just plain walk away. Then there are some days after that where they can still get out of the contract for certain reasons. Yes, the nail-biting can continue for many days. We haven't really sold it until closing, which is projected at around August 13. BUT, we have no reason to believe the buyers will walk and we are just so happy and hopeful right now. Please continue to keep your fingers crossed, this time that the buyers will come through until closing. There are talks of a move way before closing and just overnighting the paperwork; I'll keep you posted on what we decide.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Almost as if it were a "going away gift" for Jon (he leaves Thursday AM), Andrew definitely said "Dad" today in the car and meant it. We were running errands during the open house.

This photo is from the flea market we hit at the end of our outing. Open house turnout was POOR, but there are rumors of a possible offer, and even though we've heard that story many times before, we all have our fingers crossed!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Boy = Noise with Dirt on It..... someone said, and I agree.... I DID manage to get a pic of tonight's waxing gibbous between those of our dirt-eating son.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Philosophy on Christmas Card Lists

I ask you to think about your Christmas card list for a moment. I know, I know... it's JULY, for Pete's sake. The reason I have been thinking about ours is twofold; we'll hopefully need to send out change of address cards soon (please, God, let it be soon) and the grand purge of stuff has extended beyond material objects to other life "extras," aka contacts we haven't heard from in years. At 42 cents a stamp, it's now time to cut ties with a few people on the list. Before you cry foul, know that we're not deleting 95-year-old Aunt Mildred or the long, lost cousin who's just a little too self-absorbed these days to send out a holiday greeting. These deletions are people we really are not close to at all anymore, and probably never were. As I have easily and mercilessly removed people from my life with the click of the delete key, I have spent a good deal of time thinking about the whole Christmas card gig in general. Please, your thoughts...

I haven't delved into the real history of Christmas cards, although I should, because I keep asking myself, "Why do we send the cards?" Right off hand, there are a few Christmas-card-sending reasons I can think of, and only a couple of them are good. These days, it seems people send Christmas cards to:

  • sincerely and simply wish friends and family health and happiness

  • pass along cute photos of their kids and dogs

  • prove to the masses what a happy family they are, complete with a photo in matching outfits for all

  • maintain professional relationships

  • offer the latest family news via a 4-page, single-spaced, extremely pretentious and boooorrring form letter printed on holiday stationery from Office Depot

  • send along a little sermon to those they think might be a little spiritually lost

I don't mean to offend anyone here; I'm not at all proud to admit that the Burbanks have definitely fallen into more than one of these categories ourselves. And don't even get me started on this scenario: "Should we send to them this year? We didn't get a card from them last year." Come on, you know you have thought it too. When did it turn into keeping score?

So, again, I ask for your guidance on this. What is your Christmas card philosophy? Thoughtful comments would be FANTASTIC but a poll vote will do, too.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Ice Cream Flavor

Took the quiz TWICE with different answers and still got the same silly results. :OP

Monday, July 7, 2008

Lesson for Today

Jon watched Andrew this am/afternoon so I could cash in a mani/pedi gift certificate that had been eating a hole in my pocket. Upon leaving the spa in a haze of total bliss, I received the following text: Just wanted 2 apologize now 4 the cupcakes. Did not know they were in the oven.
Lesson learned: Do not store cupcakes in oven overnight. Husband will fail to check oven before preheating at 375 the next day and said cakes will become twice-baked. Mani/pedi relaxed state replaced by hysterical laughter and subsequent ruined-cupcake remorse.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Here Comes the Rain Again

Two days straight, much to the dogs' chagrin. Ugh. We did need it, though. And, it still didn't ruin the 4th of July pool fun yesterday.

Friday, July 4, 2008

New Office Fan

We finished the entire second season last night and recruited another fan in the process. By the way, HAPPY 4TH!!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

World Traveler

Andrew visited another country for the first time today as we all ventured down into Nuevo Progreso, Tamaulipas, Mexico (what will very likely be the last time for Jon and me). It was a hot day (duh) but we all still managed to have a great time shopping and eating. One thing that really bothered us, though, was the strong Mexican military presence right across the border. There were literally servicemen manning machine guns perched on second stories of buildings. The military has only been that visible there for a few months, which was deemed necessary by the new president to attempt to alleviate some of the corruption caused by the drug cartels. Just another sign of the world's troubled times, I suppose. I wanted to get better pictures of those guys, but photos weren't allowed, so I sneaked the ones I did get - ssshhhh.

The Rio Grande

Crossing the Border

Dos Equis - Dressed!

Lunch at Garcia's

Quarter given to us as change at Garcia's

Shopping, shopping, shopping!

Sick and tired of shopping, parents!

Mexican Military Presence

DONE with this Country

Giggling on the Way Home