Monday, April 28, 2008

Highlights of today's Chicago ramblings

Broasted = broiled and roasted?
Only dirty cars live in this neighborhood.
It was closed. Total bummer.

The Windy City

I've landed safely in Chicago.  Today it's more like the cold and rainy city, rather than the windy city.  Yucky weather.  Hard to believe we have gardening weather at home, and peas sprouting in the backyard.  See them here.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Happy first birthday, Madeleine!

Today we road tripped to Baton Rouge for Madeleine's first birthday.  This kid knows how to throw a party -- there was beer for the adults, and a full cake of her own so she didn't have to share.  Who's Madeleine?  She's our niece.  Technically, she's a first cousin once removed.  But who cares about technicalities?  We're claiming her.  Especially after that throw down.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Rainy Saturday

Yesterday marked our 8th anniversary (if you count in months). And April 5 marked one full year that we've owned this house. Today, finally, we got around to hanging some pictures. We had success in the dining room. Then, in the sun room, it seems that our walls may be made of concrete. We've got to get new drill bits (we killed 3 today) in order to put up the Nixon and Carter posters. Stay tuned for news of success.

Friday, April 25, 2008

More on Test Day

It was sunny and hot.  Very hot.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Thursday's Update

Wow. It's been crazy busy. A brief update: Ned's demo of the floating causeway was yesterday. It was a proof of concept demo. They proved the concept. See Ned here with his toy: an air compressor for the floating causeway.I was allowed to tour the giant warehouse with river models inside. It feels odd to be a giant hovering over a bridge.
I spent today in Jackson, reviewing grants. Things in the garden are sprouting. More photos of all that excitement soon (just as soon as I go out and take a few pics).

Monday, April 21, 2008

My brother is a panther

Patrick's Mississippi Teacher Corps assignment came in today.  He'll be teaching American History at North Panola High School in Sardis.  And, though he's not as close to Vicksburg as I'd like, he's 34 miles from Oxford.  And you really can't beat that.  I told him today that he was headed to a football school, but Ned corrected me.  South Panola is the football school; the Sardis team plays games in a cow pasture.  Wonder if they'll have classes for air sax?   Pat could be a band director...

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Wedding weekend

Ned and I went to a wedding in Oxford this weekend.  It's the first wedding we've attended since our own.  It brought up all sorts of fun memories for us, and my trek through wedding photos revealed this one:  the happy wedding couple from this weekend, Vasser and George, dancing at our wedding.  Congrats, y'all!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The river is rising

and it's leaking out through the gaps in the levee wall.  This can't be good, can it?

Friday, April 18, 2008

The tomatoes are planted!

Yesterday we got the tomatoes in the ground. It rained all day and soaked the dirt, which means if we had procrastinated just 24 more hours, we'd have had an easier time getting them planted. Ah, well. We put in peppers this afternoon, as well as squash and zucchini. When we return on Sunday we'll put in the peas, potatoes, zinnias, and some sunflowers. Now, to wait patiently for months until they're ready. That's the hard part.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Thursday on National Street

  1. Ned came home to announce that he'd won a major award at work today.  By major award, we mean praise from his boss for a job well done and fun certificate.  Way to go, Ned!
  2. The tomatoes are planted.  We have a good mix of heirloom varieties and some regular-old-genetically-modified-seed types.  We'll have tomatoes from at least half of our plants, by this design.
  3. The mosquito trucks are out in force tonight.  That's good.  I just wish this town had dog trucks to take care of some of the canine nuisances in the neighborhood.  Ned and I just can't figure it out -- do these people leave home every night, thus never having to deal with the incessant barking that goes on in their backyards?
  4. The finches are still mobbing the birdfeeders.  Today's purchase of finch food cost more than mine and Ned's dinner.  (We had pork chops with red rice and broccoli.  The finches eat thistle.)
  5. Fun photo from the Ned Archives.  Not sure what he's doing in this photo, but it's typically messy.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Happy Birthday, Daniel!

My older/younger brother turns 26 today. That makes this picture about, what, 23 years old? Wow.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


I did something I've never done before today -- I ran 6.45 miles. I've been wanting to run a 10K for awhile now, but wasn't sure if I could make it without collapsing. Today I just went out to the military park and ran it (with a little extra distance for good measure). What was better than the feeling of satisfaction at the end of the run? The Allan Benton bacon that we ate on our celebration cheeseburgers. Yum.

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Birds

It's like an Alfred Hitchcock film on National Street though, thankfully, the birds aren't pecking us to death. Their incessant chirping is maddening, however. Check out the finches all over the bird feeders that Daniel gave us for Christmas. Look carefully at the larger photo of the tree to see the spots of yellow in the branches. At one time today, I counted 28 of those guys hovering around the feeders at once. Read about these golden fellas here.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Sunday Supper: Fred's Ribs

The day was beautiful and, for the first time since we've owned Ned's grill, we lit up the coals early enough to do all our grilling in daylight. The result was really yummy: ribs, per a recipe from our friend, Fred Thompson (not the politician). See his book in the photo. See our recipe on page 108.

Working the garden, watching the river

The river's rising, and the garden's getting started. Below, see Ned with the rented tiller, destroying even more grass in our backyard (I have a theory that this is his new method to avoid mowing -- till once, or mow 50 times...he's a smart boy, and he's figured out the math). You'll also see him with the compost...a year's worth of yard clippings and trashed vegetables, which we used to save us from buying the $60 worth of supplemental dirt that we bought for last year's beds. The last photo is of the rising river...see the flood markings on the wall behind me. I was trying to look worried in the photo, but I think I just look exhausted. That's the result of all Saturday's gardening labor. (I worked, too, despite the lack of photographic evidence.)

Saturday, April 12, 2008

A post about the weather

Usually, nothing is so boring as talk about the weather. And you may well find this post boring. But there are two interesting things to note about Vicksburg (and surrounding area) weather this week.
(1) The lows for Sunday and Monday will be in the 30s. That means that we worked all day in the garden today, tilling and what not, but we can't put plants in the ground until later in the week.
(2) The rain upstream has created all sorts of havoc with the river. It's well above flood stage. The photo above, stolen from an article in our local paper, shows how much land will be under water when the river crests at 50.5 feet next week. It'll be the worst (and only a foot under) the 1973 crest, which was the worst since the crest in the '60s, which was the worst since the '27 flood. It's all people are talking about.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Really, computers make me crazy

So I'm attempting to update my domain name so it'll direct folks straight to our blog. After my morning spent figuring out Flickr, my brain is dead. Why are these computer things so difficult? On the bright side, we sure did have fun last night at Doe's. They even let me put a steak on the grill.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Delta Diners: Vicksburg Chapter

A night at Doe's Eat Place.

For all photos, visit this site. It's amazing I got this up. Why is Flickr so difficult to understand?

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Thinking about my Grandpa today.

Amazing Amy

Today's post is meant to sing the praises of my friend, Amy Evans. Amy works with me at the Southern Foodways Alliance. She's our oral historian who records (and manages others who record) the over 300 interviews in our archive. She's a great advocate for the folks she interviews, and I aspire to be as organized as she is--she meets all kinds of crazy deadlines amidst a hectic travel schedule, and she still manages to answer my too numerous e-mails and offer thoughtful responses. Last week, when I was at the conference in Baton Rouge, it dawned on me halfway through the meetings that everything I was talking about--a good bulk of work that SFA heralds as its finest achievements--are all her doing. We don't thank her enough. In addition to all of this good stuff, she's also a gifted artist, and Ned and I are saving the wall above our fireplace for the happy day when we acquire some Amy Art. See it all here, and read her blog to find out more about her.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

On the road again...

Since March 1, I've spent 21 of 39 nights away from home. That's my excuse for still having no pictures hung on the walls of our house. Who has time for homemaking when I'm never home? Tonight I'm in Oxford, home of a state champion dogwood. To read about it, click here. This is a happenin' place.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Car Shopping Begins

The day draws near when Ned and I will need a new car. I think this is what we'll get, the 2008 Nissan Altima. In the perfect world, it would be an Altima Hybrid, but we don't live in one of the approved states -- and we can't afford a car that's worth half as much as our house. For now, this one will have to do. Now, to find it affordably... The phone shopping for competitive offers begins.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Update from National Street

The dining room paint job is finished. Finally. Note how beautifully the asparagus paint color matches the celery photo that we have hanging. Also note my husband, lingering in the background, "watching" Cardinal baseball on his computer. We still have no cable from the storm.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Happy Birthday, MA/Mom!

Today we celebrate 60 happy years for MA/Mom. Congrats!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Two 5Ks make a 10K, right?

So I'm still feeling guilty about dropping out of the Vickburg 10K run and opting for the 5K walk. But tomorrow I'm going to run in the Race for the Cure 5K in Jackson and that -- combined with the St. Patty's Day 5K in Jackson -- does make a 10K run. I just handled it a few weeks apart. Wish luck to me and my friend Liz as we race for the cure! The route is around the stadium for the Mississippi Braves. Maybe we can race to find a cure for those losing Braves (1-3) while we're out there. Thank goodness for today's rain delay.

Cooking the book

On Tuesday before Mary Beth left for the conference in Baton Rouge, we used the Christmas gift from Aunt Kay to make dinner. The book is by an Italian priest in the Mississippi Delta, Paul Canonici, and his recipes are delicious. Thanks, Aunt Kay!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Breakfast with Madeleine

Mary Beth's in Baton Rouge for a meeting this week, while Ned works at home. I'm not getting as much time with family as I'd hoped, because work obligations are time consuming, but breakfast with Madeleine was fun. She's almost one!

I feel lucky

based on the number of shamrocks in our yard.