Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Though he may actually lead the Rebels to victory, he will ALWAYS creep me out.

Monday, November 26, 2007

O Christmas Tree

Sunday night was Christmas tree night. Mary Beth is missing all her best ornaments (she accidentally left them in Valdosta and Oxford), but we still have more than enough.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thanksgiving Fun

We had a wonderful time in Jackson this past weekend. We played with a baby (which we then got to return), stuffed ourselves silly with good food (including green cookies, thanks to Jessica & Marvin), watched a lot of football (Go Irish!), and generally relaxed. Also, I made a pecan pie that would make Martha Stewart look like an amateur. Well, not really. But it was good, thanks to a nice frozen pie crust!

Key to a good pie? Pecans from Valdosta (check out the label!)


While Ned smiles, the baby plays with a hanger. Later, Ned plays with Madeleine's toys.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Big decision for today...

Yikes! Advent starts soon. We still don't have an Advent wreath. I've been shopping online, and here are the images of our finalists. I'm trying not to be overly obsessed about this decision, but there's a lot of pressure here. This is the wreath that we'll use FOREVER and EVER, the wreath that'll witness our off-key Christmas singing, and the wreath that our kids will fight over once we're long gone...this is an important purchase...

Monday, November 19, 2007

Home again, home again

Turtle Bay and Hawaii were beautiful. But it's good to be home. And even the Irish won on Saturday, to make our return that much sweeter...

Looking forward to a family Thanksgiving. We'll all pile together in Jackson for three days of Corona and football. Good times.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Thursday in Hawaii

Ned had the afternoon off. Yay! First we went to the Pali Lookout (pics 1 & 2), and then to Diamond Head (pics 3 & 4, plus next post). Ended the day with fabulous Greek food at a marina...

Diamond Head

This afternoon, we walked to the summit of Diamond Head, the volcanic crater on Oahu. Those stairs were killer! Thank goodness for treats at the bottom of our climb...Aleve and Hawaii Shave Ice.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Hawaii on Wednesday

Ned worked all day. I spent the morning by the pool, and the afternoon at the Audobon Nature Center, the Triple Crown Surf Competition, and shopping. Purchases were kept to a minimum: some Hawaii shave ice and a cultured pearl necklace. We ended the night with a luau at the hotel with all of Ned's work friends. It was great fun. I continue to be amazed by the places I hear Van Morrison unexpectedly (bluesman Ben Peyton, a friend, plays a lot of VM; so did the Hawaiian band last night).

Orchids grow out of the side of trees here. They're beautiful.

Don't be fooled: botanical gardens can be dangerous.

Me at the waterfall (while Ned worked, poor fella.)

Hawaii shave ice. I love it.

Behind us is the bay where i saw turtles yesterday morning.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

And more photos from Tuesday

Malasadas. I love 'em. Especially from a truck.

So I spent a long time looking at this sign and laughing in Chinatown today. It's a woman spanking a shrimp. And I stood on the sidewalk and took several close up photos of it.

And then I bothered to take four steps back for a full doorway photo, and realized it was a sex shop. Awkward for all...

Hawaii in Fast Forward

Religion on the Hawaiian Roadside, for my friend, Joe York.

Orchid farm.

Landscape from the windiest place ever.

Pork council forgot to send them their slogan before the meat market painted the sign.

I love pigs. It's the year of 'em, ya know.

Today Ned worked all day. Poor boy attended more conference sessions than I can count. I, meanwhile, took a fast forward tour of Oahu. On the agenda: windward ocean-view drive; macadamia nut farm; orchid farm; Agnes's Bakeshop for malasada #1; Zippy's (for a restroom, and to peek at loco moco in another location); Pali's Highway, the windiest point on the island; Hanauma Bay and fabulous Greek restaurant across the street; downtown Honolulu; another trip to Chinatown; a tour of the University of Hawaii; and a stop at the surfing championship and malasada truck (that's #2) on the North Shore before I headed back in time to meet Ned for sunset. I'll spare you the gushing, inadequate details and landscape photography. But it's beautiful here, trust me.

Seeing is believing

Day started well. Hiking on the resort started the morning (the maps were bad, I got lost), but I stumbled upon a sea turtle amidst the ramblings. Lunch from a shrimp truck, which would have been better, but the menu read like a Chinese restaurant in a shopping mall. Afternoon spent by the pool/beach was terrific, and the afternoon nap even better.

Then the evening began. We headed out for Mexican food (yes, in Hawaii. I love it). About a mile from our turn, we saw a brilliant flash of light which we thought to be lightning. It turned out to be a power line that fell in the road, so all traffic was turned around after a lengthy delay. We headed back east to find dinner, in a desperate effort to avoid overpriced, bland resort food, only to drive about 40 miles and pass only 3 places: one serving "island-like cuisine," the other looking sketchy, and the third--the one we picked--serving local fare. It was called J&L's Hawaiian BBQ. There was no BBQ on the menu, in case you're curious. I ordered loco moco, a genius invention of white rice topped with two hamburger patties, two eggs over easy, and the whole thing smothered in gravy. And did I mention that cold macaroni salad was tucked in the side of the container? Ned got "the mixed plate"--gravy over hamburger patty over steak over rice over (again) cold macaroni salad. He had a side of beef stew. If you're counting, that's 3 kinds of beef in one styrofoam container. Photos follow, b/c I know that no one will believe the concoctions.

Late night will include lots of Tums.

My brother, Patrick, applied to Mississippi Teacher Corps today. Keep your fingers crossed!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Hawai'i Days One & Two

So far, so good. We started (after Jackson) in the Dallas airport. I found a candy store and charged a bunch of sugar for the plane trip over, and Ned drank so much Guinness that we lost track of time and almost missed the plane. Landing was safe; hotel (the Royal Hawaiian) was very "pink" and lots of fun. Late night dinner involved pork (they wrapped the pork in greens, rather than flavoring the greens with small bits of pork, which I think is GENIUS), and then some malasadas (sp?) from Leonard's. Melissa, we know it wasn't as good as Agnes's would have been, but it was convenient. Afternoon at Pearl Harbor (very moving) and a few hours spent cursing the fact that you can't find H1 West anywhere on this island (though there are plenty of exits for H1 East, oddly). Hit the jackpot with postcards, and arrived at Turtle Bay this afternoon in time for sunset and conference mai-tais. All in all, great trip on day two. Stay tuned in for more photos.

More Hawai'i Photos

Photos in order: The pink hotel. Lunch spot where Ned's still not sure what he ordered, but we do know that it was prepared in the foyer next to a faucet. Sunset from our bacony on the North Shore.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Irish...