Sunday, August 31, 2008

Not one, but two of these beauties!

We found this one this morning.

I've always found the Black-and-yellow argiope (garden spider) fascinating. The webs they build are beautiful. After they've finished building their web, the argiope weaves a zig-zag 'stitch' in the center of the web. Some people think it's to let birds know the web is there. I haven't the foggiest idea why they do it, but it makes the web easy for me to see when I'm working in the yard.

Although the female argiope can range in size of 3/4 to 1 1/8 inches, the ones we've found are easily 2-2 1/2 inches. The argiope is a beneficial spider because they catch and eat wasps, aphids, mosquitoes, flies and bees.

And I found this lovely lady this afternoon while I was watering.

What I find interesting about these two lovely ladies is that their webs are on either side of my rosemary bush that is probably 4 feet in diameter. I didn't think that they would build their webs so close together.

Maybe they'll keep our mosquito and fly population down, so that we can enjoy our patio as the weather cools off.

P.S. We've named them Jezebel and Charlotte.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

This is SOOOO not good!

Just read an update, Gustav's winds are up to 150mph.

Please, if you live within the strike zone, heed the warnings and EVACUATE the area. I saw on the news yesterday that there are plenty of places to stay here in No. Alabama.

Come join us!

(photo courtesy of The Weather Channel)

My favorite seasons

It's my favorite season(s), fall and football.

Why fall you may ask? It's because I love the changing colors, crisp mornings (well, in a few weeks here), the kids going back to school and FOOTBALL.

This weekend kicks off the start of college football. While my absolute favorite team to watch is the Arizona State Sun Devils, I don't get to see them that often as I live in SEC country. My other favorite team is the Tennessee Volunteers - what?! The reason for this is when Hubby and I moved to No. AL in 1990, I was asked by everyone that I worked with who I was for Alabama or Auburn. Not being a fan of either, I had to think up something quick, so I chose the Vols. My answer seem to pacify my co-workers. I was thrilled that I didn't have to pick sides. Ha! As the years passed, I really did become a Vols fan. I loved to watch Peyton Manning play (still do).

So, cheer on your favorite teams. Enjoy this first weekend of football!

P.S. Wasn't the VA Tech/East Carolina game a hoot?!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Musings from the Garden...

Every year about this time, we have a visitor that comes calling at dusk.

The first time it happened, we were trying to figure out who was "doorbell ditching" - only the doorbell wasn't being rung. Someone or something was knocking on the sidelights at the front door. Very strange!

It took us a couple of nights to figure out that it was one of these.

We believe it's a female bullfrog, just trying to catch a meal. Apparently, there are some good eats at our front door. Who knew!

Anyway, last night I was checking for packages on the front porch when I spied her sitting on the sidewalk. I ran to get the camera and was going to sit on the top step to photograph her when she decided to jump at me. Screaming (don't know what I thought she was going to do to me), I jumped back and didn't get the picture. No worries, Hubby to the rescue! He "chased" her around the flower bed before being able to get her photograph.

Wonder what the neighbors where thinking - it was quite funny.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Not what I expected

We went to the OTB grand reopening. was not anything like I had pictured.

First, the brewery is NOT located in Lowe Mill. It's a about 2 miles farther down the road. They did serve FREE beer, which BTW was very good (remember, I'm not a beer drinker) and barbeque. They ran out of BBQ, which turned out to be alright with us because we had heard it was awful. We ended up with hot dogs. Not what I would've picked, but hey it was free.

Second, the artisans closed up shop at 4:00pm. I suppose it was so they could take advantage of the free beer and eats. The girl was bummed because she would've liked to spoken with some of them. We did meander through the building to check out where the artsy people worked. Yep...typical starving artist workspaces. There is, however, a woman who creates her own blown glass pieces. We intend to go back when the shop is open, in hopes of watching her create a piece. I've never seen anyone blow glass before - I think it would be fun. Hubby has - he had a German glass blower create a pair of wine glasses for us when he went to Bremen in 2006.

Third, Lowe Mill is just that an old cotton mill that is in need of refurbishing. Hopefully, the man that owns the building will continue to work on it. It has great potential.

Good beer, music and friends made for a very enjoyable evening.

Friday, August 22, 2008

OTB is reopening!

While I'm not a beer drinker, I do know several people who will be thrilled with this weekend's reopening of Olde Towne Brewery, a local microbrewery. The original brewery burned down last summer. The owners assured our community that they would rebuild, but maybe not in the same place.

Well, the time has come! OTB is reopening in the Lowe Mill area of town. The city is working on revitalizing this area of town by attracting the local artisans. I haven't been down there, yet. We're planning to go for the grand opening. I'm hoping that it'll be like a smaller (much) of downtown Chattanooga or Nashville. Lots of arts & crafts shops and cool eateries.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Well...I did it *Updated*

Yep - I turned in my letter of resignation today. It's effective August 29th. Still waiting to see what will happen - on one hand, I hope that she'll find the money to bring me back up to 6 hours/day and on the other hand, it's okay if she doesn't.

*Had a meeting today (8/19) with my boss regarding my letter. She freaked out. She asked me to give it a little more time and, because I'm too nice for my own good (and that I REALLY like my job), I said that I would. It is her hope that there will be more money coming in the next few weeks/months. We'll wait and see about that. I, also, adjusted my hours so that I'm not twiddling my thumbs between the time I drop my kids off and when I have to be at work. That makes me much happier - felt stupid showing up at 8:00am when I really needed to be there at 7:15am.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Doctor's appointments and such...

I took yesterday off to take care of some doctor's appointments. I did this last year and it worked out great. This year I managed to get in two doctor's appointments and the all-important hair appointment all before 2:00pm.

Now, I'm not one to talk about my physical appearance. Mainly because I'm very self-conscious about it. Anyway, I had a mammogram done yesterday. I'm blessed (or cursed) in the boob department and take great pains to minimize them (long story as to why). So when the mammography tech adjusted the girls on the machine and SMASHED them down, I thought to myself "damn, they're enormous and this hurts." Though, it's something I must do for my own peace of mind and it takes less than 10 minutes. Later, I was telling Hubby about it and asked him, "how in the world do the women who are petite in that area do it?" He didn't have a response. All I can say is, that I'd gladly share some of mine.

After finishing at the mammography center, I had enough time before my hair appointment to browse a store I haven't been in since we moved to the Rocket City. Lawren's is a really neat shop in the Medical District and I didn't have nearly enough time to see everything. Some of the stuff they have is more than I want to spend, but it's nice to get ideas. I did come home with a stainless steel scoop and a hand-held juicer.

Must remember to go back and shop for Christmas ideas/gifts. 'Cuz ya know it's coming up faster than we think.

Monday, August 11, 2008


I was wondering are all high school counselors unfriendly?

I've been playing phone and email tag with my daughter's counselor. I finally received a response regarding a change we wanted to make in her schedule.

Her email basically told me that H*** will freeze over before any changes could/would be made to her schedule. I thought counselors were supposed to be helpful and understanding.

Guess not...

Maybe I need to sic my husband on them.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Back to School...Already?

Actually, school started back on Wednesday. Where has the summer gone?

I'm working only 3 hours/day - not really happy about it. I feel disconnected and lost. It's hard for me to just leave work in the middle of the day when I know how crazy things can get in the afternoons. At least, I still have a job and I can move within the system if I want to if something becomes available. I'm giving this new situation until Fall Break and make a final decision then. I'm hoping something else will come available, but if nothing comes up, I'll be just as happy being a SAHM again. There is always something to do around here.

Funny dawned on me yesterday that my daughter will be graduating high school in 2011 and my son in 2013. My how time flies! The girl is wanting to go to art school and has started doing research. We have suggested a back up plan - just so that she will have a constant means of support. Not sure what she's come up with. The boy hasn't mentioned anything about what he'd like to do when he "grows" up. He is very mechanically inclined so, we're thinking some sort of engineer. We'll just have to wait and see.