Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Cards Sweep Reds

and the regular season is over with neither of our teams in the playoffs.

Monday, September 29, 2008

What are you gonna do?

Landscaping at ERDC strikes -- literally. Ned went out to his car this afternoon to find a rock through the back window, probably kicked up when they were doing all the yard work by the parking lots yesterday. Another day, another broken window for Team Mitchell.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Things we didn't buy at the Soulard Market

but only because we didn't have coolers! Top photo: sister Jessica & brother-in-law Marvin. Middle: us. Bottom: Dad.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Saturday's photo of the day (so far)

Ned and Jessica listen to the final moments of the Ole Miss/FLA game as Mary Beth's dad calls the play-by-play over the phone. Hotty Toddy!

Friday in St. Louis

The wrap-up: The Cardinals won in the bottom of the 9th. We ordered delicious Imo's pizza with provelle cheese for dinner. And, Mary Beth scored five free tickets for us to attend to the Taste of St. Louis from a nice guy in the hotel lobby.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Last of the garden bounty

Last year, they were non-existent. But this year, we have more peppers than we know what to do with!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Can you believe it?!?

September 24, 2008
Statement by Commission on Presidential Debates

Oxford, Miss., September 24, 2008 - “The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) is moving forward with its plan for the first presidential debate at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss. this Friday, September 26. The plans for this forum have been underway for more than a year and a half. The CPD’s mission is to provide a forum in which the American public has an opportunity to hear the leading candidates for the president of the United States debate the critical issues facing the nation. We believe the public will be well served by having all of the debates go forward as scheduled.”

The biggest campaign news of the week hit this afternoon: McCain wants out of the debate. This is political gold for the Democrats, if only they can stay on message and hammer the idea that presidents should be capable of handling multiple tasks at one time (especially given today's technology). Ned gets back from Portland in two hours (at 10 p.m.), and until then I'm madly devouring all of the news coverage (particularly Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow). Once Ned's home (which will not be soon enough), we'll have to go back to our separate news reports and silent cheering for opposite political parties.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Halloween arrives early

Found on Saturday, nestled in between our front door and the screen: a black widow. I just thought it was a spider, and wanted it removed on principle. Ned recognized it as a black widow, because of the red spots (visible in this photo) and a check with Google and National Geographic (see here) confirms. We'll let you guess who was the super-brave half of Team Mitchell. One of us walked around the house to open the screen door and stood outside repeating, "Did you get it? Did you get it?" The other one of us braved the black widow and knocked the spider and its web outside into the garden using a broom. As creepy as it was, we just couldn't bear to kill it. That is, we couldn't bear to kill it until (1) we watched the National Geographic video and (2) after giving it a free pass, it re-appeared in our doorway on Monday. Then we killed it, with no qualms.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Weekend Eats

Living in Vicksburg, we don't get out to eat much. But we at at home like royalty. (This month's credit card statement, with all its grocery store charges, proves it.) Here's a glimpse of Ned's lunch on Sunday: bbq ribs (a first recipe attempt, which will certainly be repeated), field peas (loyal blog readers will remember them from our weekend of shucking), and homemade French bread (we've mastered it now, and Atkins has no place in our diet). Not visible on the other side of Ned's plate: German potato salad (a recipe from One Potato, Two Potato) and whole wheat pita (eaten with homemade baba ghanouj in a separate container). Interestingly, these were all leftovers. Ned likes leftovers. Mary Beth hates them--both on principal (who wants to eat the same meal twice?) and because of boredom--what do I do with myself on the weekends if I'm not cooking? Today Ned leaves for a work trip. Don't worry; there will be no other boring meal posts this week, because Mary Beth will enjoy three days of an exclusive cereal diet.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The last of the zinnias

They served us well over the summer, but today the zinnias had to go. Last year, we enjoyed beautiful flowers all the way through Thanksgiving. This year, the combination of horrible heat and drought in July, followed by a wet, wet August, left us with scraggly flowers whose leaves were covered with fungus spots. Yuck. So this evening we picked all the blooms left available, and pulled up the rest of the plants as the sun set on us. Somehow, removing them in the dark seemed less tragic. I guess it's because we couldn't see all the flowers we missed at picking time.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

(L)ouisiana (S)aves (U)s...this Saturday

It was a difficult day. Things started going south when Mary Beth realized that our local ABC affiliate was going to give us the Miami/Texas A&M game instead of the Irish. A mad dash to the local sports bar ensued, followed by an afternoon of $2 PBRs (in bottles?!?) and an Irish loss to Michigan State. Then, the Cubs clinched in their game against the Cardinals. Naturally, the Rebels also lost. Ned took little consolation in the fact that Vandy beat them. I think it made it worse. The only bright spot in the day was LSU. The photo above may explain the success. Perhaps if the pope returned to the green and gold, rather than the purple and gold, my team wouldn't be 2-1 today.

Friday, September 19, 2008

SFA Ramblings in North Mississippi

Earlier this week, I went on a staff retreat with my SFA friends: Amy, Melissa, and John T. We gathered in a house with a mouse (but no cell phone reception), and plotted the future of the SFA with a couple of tall boys. And we ate lunch here, in Potts Camp. It took us about an hour to find it (because the GPS was conveniently left in the purse I didn't bring), but the visit to Flick's was well worth the drive. You could eat lunch, fill the car with gas, and even buy a cookbook at the candy register. Plus, a twelve pack of PBR in this town was just $7; we got the "no tax" special.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Vacation Dreams

If I don't get to Ireland soon, I worry that they'll run out of Guinness! I've always wanted to go, and now is the time -- pre-debt, pre-children, and when I'm still young enough to drink like an Irishman. I took the first step today: announcing to Ned that I want to go. And I took the second step tonight: ordering a travel guide online. Now that we've invested $6 in a guide book, Ned's sure to let us go...right? Updates on my pitch for Ireland to follow over the coming weeks/months. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wok On

Introducing the newest addition to our kitchen collection: the Le Creuset wok. We purchased it as an anniversary gift to ourselves when we vacationed in St. Augustine, because they have great outlet stores nearby! Now Wednesday's china night can be celebrated with real Asian food. Not pictured: free cheese grater.

Monday, September 15, 2008


Happy Birthday, Patrick!

Congratulations--your age divided by the number of sisters your mom has approximates pi! Most likely, this will never happen again, so enjoy your special day.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

What a difference a few months makes!

Check out the Black Eyed Susan vine that we planted around the bottle tree in April. It's taken off in just the last few weeks. Top photo from January.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Three happy things this Saturday

We got the ice maker attached to a water line. We finally installed a new faucet for the kitchen sink, to replace the $19.95 version that came with the house. And the third thing? Check out those game day t-shirts. Irish 35. Michigan 17.

One good thing about Selma, Alabama

We drove through Selma twice on the trip to the beach. Once through Hurricane Faye, and -- on the return trip -- in an effort to beat Hurricane Gustav to Mississippi. There was only time for a quick sign photo, but next time there'll be pancakes.

Friday, September 12, 2008

We have arrived!

Finally, Ned and I have premiered in this month's issue of Delta Magazine (at an event, ironically, held in Pontotoc). Here's the famous photo.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wish we were eating lunch here again.

The salted cured meats at Salumi's in Seattle were unbelievably good.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My husband...or is it?

When we returned from the beach, Ned hadn't shaved in over a week. He was not quite a full-beard stage (thank goodness!), but he was still pretty scruffy. We decided to try out a few new looks for him as he shaved in stages. Here are the results, prison photo style, with our verdicts. Full beard: no way. Goatee: better, but not good. 70s mustache: hysterically funny, but shaved after only 3 short minutes because it freaked us both out.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

French Bread, First Try

Without a bakery in Vicksburg, I've finally started making good use of all the bread-baking books and bowls and gadgets that my siblings gave me for Christmas two years ago. Friday night was our first attempt at French bread. It worked. We're still a bit amazed, as we've never had first-try bread work out before. Now that we've mastered Italian Ciabatta and French baguettes, we're going to work on conquering another European country's baking traditions.

Monday, September 8, 2008

The Draft, Vicksburg Style

On Wednesday, while Ned was in DC, I drafted our Fantasy Football team with friends in Vicksburg. They had arranged to take over the sports bar, and we had the computers hooked up to the overhead projectors, with ample beer on the table and even a basket or two of chicken wings. The whole scene was very intimidating. My first round draft pick was the first to elicit groans (yeah, I got a Manning), and we were thoroughly pounded in our first week of play, but at least I'm not the owner of a broken Tom Brady or a whiny Brett Favre.

In other football news, the Irish are in for a long season. See the lackluster recap from Saturday's game here.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

St. John's in Oxford

Construction is really moving along on the church. It should open this year, I think. The original building was torn down just a couple of weeks prior to Katrina in 2005. Post-storm financial contributions from Gulf Coast Ole Miss alums dried up, and it's only now (three years later) that we're nearing the construction finish line.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Lasseters at Home

And the vacation ended with a trip to Valdosta to see the 'rents. Though not everything can be seen in this frame, some key elements in the room at the time: three laptops, a TV that's recapping Hurricane Gustav, four cell phones, and two (nearly empty) glasses of whiskey.

Friday, September 5, 2008

A Savannah Side Trip

After a week in St. Augustine, we drove to Savannah to see Sarah and Brian (MB's sister and our brother-in-law), who have recently moved there from Milwaukee. They live in a very cool city. These photos are from our touring: the fellas in front of the Girl Scout House (note the Boy Scout protest salute--we didn't tell them it was the Girl Scout salute, too) and the Lasseter girls at the birthplace of Flannery O'Connor.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Our favorite things to do in St. Augustine are to eat lunch at O'Steen's and take twilight strolls on the beach. Here we are at the last lunch this week, with Leslie. You have to give your name at the window and wait for table at almost any time of day. Last year, one of our greatest wedding gifts was an open tab at this place, given to me and Ned by our friends at the SFA. Good friends, huh?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Rain, Rain -- Go Away!

It is a gray, gloomy, rainy day in Vicksburg...again. Gustav will not leave. We've had tornado watches for the past three days, a six hour power outage yesterday, and about seven inches of rain so far. In other news: Ned's in DC, so I'm home alone and moping. We have the Fantasy Football Draft tonight at the sports bar, 7 p.m. I plan to begin research in a few hours. And I found a new blog that I really like, with photos from around home. See it here. And see an older version here.

The free sightseeing continues

at the Daytona 500. The race track tour would have been cool, but not $60 cool. So, again, we settled for free outdoor photos. If you're thinking about Daytona, don't. This is the only cool thing in an otherwise blighted Florida town. Even the beach can't save it.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


We didn't pay the admission fee to see the large swimming pool with dolphins, but we were shameless in snapping photos with the free outdoor attractions.

Monday, September 1, 2008


We subscribed to the Vicksburg newspaper this spring, in an attempt to be informed citizens and support the local press. But we travel so much that it's proven problematic. Either we have to get friends to pick up our paper while we're gone (an inconvenience since we're gone so often), or Mary Beth has to contact the newspaper and ask them to suspend delivery for the days we're away. Option #2 never works. (Well, now that I think about it, once the carrier did deliver all the papers at the end of a week of saving them, but that was in addition to the fact that she threw them every day.) Since the paper staff can't figure out how to stop delivery upon request, we decided to quit subscribing...in June. Still, the newspaper is persistent with delivery.

Last week, before we left for the beach, MB again contacted them twice: once to remind them that we haven't subscribed for almost two months and to ask them nicely to quit delivering to us, and a second time to submit a vacation request. [The theory was that at least one of these tactics would stop delivery while we were at the beach.] Well, here's a photo of what we arrived home to today. It would save a lot of trees if the carrier would just post a sign in our yard reading: OWNERS AWAY. ROB NOW.

Today's VWTF moment brought to you by The Vicksburg Post, whose motto is, "Subscribe once, pay once, get a paper for life -- whether you want to or not."