Monday, March 28, 2011

The 3 far...of Caffeine Withdrawal

As you may or may not know, I gave up caffeine for Lent.  Here's a summary of my experience so far.

Week 1

I was tired, groggy and sleepy all the time.

Week 2

That shaking hand thing that I had?  The one that made me think I was getting Parkinson's?  It's gone and I no longer have a signature like a 90 year old woman.  Also, in a weird sort of way, I have more energy.  It's not a WHOA kind of caffeine induced energy.  It's more of a sustained all day long energy.  That's boring, but kind of nice, too.  I do miss that WHOA though.

I'm also sleeping all night long with no crazy frantic dreams.  I thought I was waking up in the middle of the night because I had to go to the bathroom, but it turns out I was just going to the bathroom because I was awake.  I guess. 

Week 3

Last week, in a three day spree:

(1) I ran a red light.  I didn't even notice it was red until I was driving under it.

(2) I read my bedside clock wrong and got up at 6:00 a.m. instead of 7:00 a.m.  I made my bed and brushed my teeth before I even realized what I had done.  Since I had already made my bed, I couldn't even go back to bed.

(3) I locked my keys in the car.  Bonnie and mom and I were eating fried fish at the KC Hall when I noticed.  I had to call Terry's husband to go to mom's and bring me my extra key.

To sum up: bad week, good week, bad week.  I have three more weeks to go.  I can't wait to find out what's next.  Or can I?


Monday, March 14, 2011

St. Jude Thaddeus Bereavement Ministry

My mom sent me this bulletin from church:

Bereavement Ministry
Have you lost a loved one?

Losing a loved one eventually touches all of us.  If you have suffered the loss of a friend, parent, spouse, or child, the grieving process can be difficult at best.  Through this new ministry at St. Jude Thaddeus, we hope to help those who are struggling through the deep sorrow we all experience with the death of someone close to us.

Whether it's been some time since your loved one died or your loss is recent, please join us.

Thursdays, March 17, 2011 - April 28, 2011
6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. in Room M6
St. Jude Family Life Center
(no meeting on April 21, 2011 - Holy Thursday)

No age limit.  Open to any faith.
Meetings will be led by a licensed Professional Counselor

I am the resurrection and the life.
The one who believes in me will live,
even though they die.
                                          John 11:25

6825 Gladys Avenue
Beaumont, TX  77706

Thursday, March 10, 2011

American Idol - Season 10, Top 13

In order of my favorite performances:

Casey - Unbelievable! Great stage presence and not a note off key.

James - Perfect! Not screechy and sounded beautiful.

Thia - Like the judges, I didn't care for the middle part at all, but I think she has a beautiful voice. I see her doing a lot of animated Disney princess voice overs.

Naima - I think this would have been incredible if she hadn't been so nervous. I really like her.

Jacob - He seemed so nervous in the beginning, I thought he was going to have a meltdown. The rest of the song was beautiful though. His pants were too tight.

Stefano - Sounded great, but I found his performance to be manic. Made me nervous.

Pia - Excellent vocal, but she bores me. I find her big notes to be a little flat, but who am I to say?

Lauren - Great voice, but I thought her performance was a mess. I like her though.

Scotty - Very good vocal, but also boring for me. He has a future in the recording business no matter what happens on Idol.

Haley - I like this girl, but did not like her performance at all.

Ashthon - Doesn't do a thing for me. She looked really beautiful though.

Paul - Love him, but what the hell? I thought he was awful and I HATE to say that.

Karen - Bad, bad, bad. Unless she gets a huge block of hispanic votes, she's going home.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Laurie Fixes the Mortgage Mess. You're Welcome.

On my way to work, I listen to Market Place Morning Report on NPR. It’s not as boring as it sounds. At least once a week, Steve Chiotakis has a story about the mortgage mess. If he would call me, I would tell him what happened and how to fix it.

What happened?

The housing mess was not created by people who bought homes they could afford and ended up in foreclosure due to health problems or job losses. It was caused by people who bought houses they couldn’t afford and by the banks that encouraged such idiotic behavior.

What else happened?

Lots of the same idiots who were buying houses they couldn’t afford purchased them with adjustable rate mortgages. How could anybody (other than the banks) possibly think this was a good idea? Who would buy something with the caveat, “Oh, by the way, that mortgage payment you already can’t afford? It might go up by several hundred dollars at some point.”

Whose fault was it?

The housing mess was caused by the people who bought houses they couldn’t afford. Period. Yes, the banks were making and selling bad loans left and right, but those loans were signed for by the above-mentioned idiots.  Yes, realtors showed prospective clients properties they knew the clients couldn’t afford. However, just because they make a pair of pants in your size doesn’t mean you should wear them. The same goes for buying a house. Just because the realtor and bank says the house fits your ass, doesn’t mean you should buy it.

Okay, genius, how do we fix it?

1. Builders must start building moderately priced new housing that normal working people can afford. Every house does not need granite countertops and marble floors.

2. There is a desperate need for decent rental properties in nice areas at reasonable rates. A lot of people jump into a mortgage they can’t afford, because they are appalled that they must pay a bigger monthly rental payment for a two bedroom, one bath apartment than for a monthly house note. How can a person save money for a down payment if they’re spending all of their money on rent?

3. Realtors must stop showing people properties they know the people can’t afford.

4. Banks must stop giving loans to people who they know can’t afford them.

5. Banks should require those humongous down payments people hate. If you can’t save enough money for a decent down payment, you aren’t ready to own a house.

6. People must stop being idiots. Renting until you can afford to buy a house within your budget might be a huge pain in the ass, but I’m guessing being kicked out of your home is a much bigger pain in the ass.

Friday, March 04, 2011

Pre-Natal and Post-Natal Exercise Program...In Beaumont!

   (Photos by Beaumont Enterprise

My brilliant daughter-in-law is teaching pre-natal and post-natal exercise classes for pregnant women and babies up to 6 months old at the Christus St. Elizabeth Health and Wellness Center.  

Click here for a video. 

Free for members, $5 for non-members
Tuesday and Thursday
12:15 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Christus Health and Wellness Center
3030 North Street
Beaumont, TX  77702

For more information:
Call: 409-899-777

(Pictures by Beaumont Enterprise)

Thursday, March 03, 2011

"...or, maybe it's a rat."

When the exterminator was here the other day, he said the words, "...or, maybe it's a rat."  I'm not sure exactly what he said, because I sort of blacked out after that.

Last night, I got home from visiting my grand-fabulous-babies and noticed my rug in front of my stove was askew.  At first, I thought I moved it when I pushed my kitchen island out of the way to put my Lean Cuisine's in the freezer...the ones I bought because I left my freezer open yesterday...if you're keeping track.

So, I grabbed the rug and pulled it straight and it had been gnawed, about six inches toward the center of the rug in some parts, along the edge that had been under my stove.  Sonofabitch.  What the hell kind of varmint do I have that is strong enough to pull a rug.  Granted, it's a flexible rubber cushiony rug (that I spent $20 damn dollars on two months ago), but still.  That ain't no mouse.

I banged on the drawer to scare away whatever gnawed the rug and then pulled the drawer out.  At the back of the wall under my stove, there is a hole around the electrical wiring for the stove.  Bingo.  That's where the furry bastard is getting in.  There were pieces of the rug scattered about, but no nest, thank you Baby Jesus.

I slept last night, when I did sleep, with my bedroom door closed and a pair of blue jeans stuffed under the door. I had bad dreams all night, mostly about married people having affairs in the front seat of my car while I was driving and the people in the back seat of my car thought I was stupid to be annoyed by that.  What that has to do with vermin infestations, I do not know.

An interesting thing I discovered about having a mouse in your house is that everybody has a story.  Even the lady at the pest control place who answers the phone told me her story.  It's one of those little secrets that people don't talk about. 

When I had a ghost in my house, at first I was hesitant to tell people.  I soon found out that every single person I speak to about it has a personal ghost story.  It's comforting, in a creepy sort of way, to find out that everyone also has a "I had a gotdamn mouse in my house" story, too.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

When It Rains...yada, yada, yada

My life has a rhythm.  Things be-bop along fine for months and months, then crap happens.  My current series of crap started with mouse droppings.

I woke up yesterday morning and there was what looked like mouse turds in front of my hall closet.  The exterminator came out and said, basically, "Lady, if you had that many mice, you'd be overrun with 'em." 

He picked up my couch, he looked under cushions, he walked all over my house and searched with his little flashlight, didn't find anything and didn't charge me a penny.  It appears I brought the mouse poop into my house in a box of things I got out of my mom's garage when we were cleaning it out Sunday.  I want to marry the mouse-man, but I don't suppose his wife and three kids would approve.  (Note:  If you have insect/vermin/pest problems call Guardtech 409-813-2297.)

While doing my own mouse hunt this afternoon, I noticed my dryer vent "hose thingy" was torn and the subsequent hot air blowing under the wallpaper in my laundry room was causing the wallpaper to peel off the wall.  So, I got on the floor, patched the "hose thingy" with duct tape and ripped the wallpaper off the wall.

That was after getting home from work and finding my freezer door open.  Everything was thawed out.  Everything.  Every Lean Cuisine, every P. F. Chang meal, every damn thing.  Nice.

While I was bringing out the trash full of everything in my freezer and the old wallpaper, I noticed the sheetrock about to come down in my garage ceiling.  Seriously?  Yes, seriously. 

So, I put the garbage out, moved my car to the other side of the garage away from the threatening sheetrock, came back in the house, locked the door and sat on the couch.  That's it.  I'm done.  American Idol, it's you and me kid.  Make my day.