Tuesday, October 26, 2010

More Octopus News

You know how it is when you get a new car? Before you purchase it, you never notice that car on the road, then afterwards, you see it everywhere. 
That is how it is with me and octopus now. Actually, it is Barry that is still telling me octopus stories. This morning he informed me that Paul, the World Cup Psychic octopus died.

Photo:REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
You may recall that he, Paul, not Barry, predicted the winners of all Germany's World Cup clashes, and then the final by selecting Spain over the Netherlands. Just before each game, the Octopus would choose one of two boxes, each loaded with a mussel food treat and marked on the outside with one of the teams. The aquarium may build a little shrine in his honor. Apparently, he already has his one iPhone app and clothing line. 
Wow, I feel the need to accomplish something now. However, octopus are one of the most intellectual animals in the sea. So I guess I have to give Paul kudos for all he accomplished in his 2 1/2 years. 

I also want to add that the octopus is the only thing concerning the World Cup that Barry cared about. He did not watch one minute of the event. 

Monday, October 25, 2010

Counting our Blessings

Here are the little, whistling cherubs asleep. 

We treasure the time we get to spend with all our grandchildren. And, why not? They are precious. Here's an example of just how precious. 

Ben was on the phone with his mom. She told him she missed him. He said he missed her, too. Then she must have said, "I miss you more." I heard him chuckle and say, "That's silly, how could a mom miss her child more than a child can miss their mom?" 

Be still my heart. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Warning to Grandparents and Parents

Do not let your cute, adorable grandchildren or children talk you into buying the  flashlights that are also a glow stick We purchased ours at Tom Thumb.  My grandson, Ben, LOVES flashlights. So, I was a sucker and bought he and my granddaughter, Scarlett, each one. 
Then we got home and found that the flashlights are also a whistle. A very LOUD whistle. 
Ben was ecstatic. Scarlett cried, because she didn’t know how to make her whistle work. (Scarlett is three, but feels she should be able to do anything that a six year old can do). After Scarlett calmed down, I showed her how to use her whistle. 
What is wrong with me? I am seriously concerned about myself. Let the whistling begin. 

I sent them out to the back porch for the sake of the cats, dogs (did I mention I have Ben and Scarlett’s dog too?) and my sanity. Then it began to thunder. So they went into the garage to play. Ben told me he would whistle if they needed something. I opened the garage door since it wasn’t raining yet, and they played and whistled away. Sorry neighbors, but it was either you or me.
After a short while the whistling was a little more constant. I looked into the garage, and Ben and Scarlett were standing on the golf cart (whistling). There were two very large dogs in the garage. I think all that whistling was calling in the neighborhood dogs, but it could have been the thunder. Luckily the dogs were very friendly and had a tag with their address on it. 

Scarlett is not crying, she is just trying to hold onto these dogs as they were trying to get into the house.
(possibly to escape the whistles?)

We tied them to the golf cart (a la wagon train style) and took them home. Ben told me he would whistle if he saw any cars. Thank you, Ben. The dogs were delivered home, and we returned to a rainy day of flashlights and whistles. 
The flashlights are in bed with Ben and Scarlett with the strict instructions that they cannot whistle. I fear I will be awakening to those whistles in the morning though. 

The good news, their parents come home tomorrow night and those flashlight/whistles are going home with them.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Has the Search for Baby Names Gone too Far?

I know that parents are searching for different and unusual names these days, but I want to go on record that I think they may have gone too far. It all came to light today when Scarlett and I were walking into Ben’s elementary school for lunch. There is a sidewalk up to the doorway that was apparently a class project. The students have their handprints and names in the cement along with the year 2004. As we walked over the 2004, Scarlett said, “that is an o.” (not a zero, but an o) Being the supportive grandmother I am, I didn’t correct her but replied, “That’s right.”  Then the conversation went something like this:
Scarlett-”O stands for ovary.”
Me-”What does it stand for?”
Scarlett- “Ovary, that is a girl’s name.”
Me- “Do you mean Avery?”
Scarlett-” No, it’s Ovary.”
Oh my. I should have just told her it was a zero not an o, but then I would have never known about the little girl named Ovary.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Octopus, Octopi, Octopod, Octopuses

Just because we have been home for a little over a month now, don’t distress that my travels with Barry are over. He has been up to some things, but those will have to wait for another post. 
However, for the past two days, he has been watching certain videos on the internet. Some wives might be worried, but Barry has shared them with me. It all started after he listened to a How Stuff Works Podcast about Octopus, Octopi, Octopod, Octopuses.

He is so fascinated with octopi now. I went to sleep hearing about octopus. Before he left for work this morning, he shared octopus information, and I watched octopus videos with him before dinner this evening. Let me share them with you:

You may not find the octopi fascinating, but this is just one of the many things that makes me find Barry enchanting.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Who's Your Daddy?

You may recognize this precious guy from a previous post. It is our great-nephew, Christian. 
Look at those blue eyes. How cute is he?

Who does he look most like? His father, grandfather, or mother?

P.S-If you want to see a beautiful brown-eyed girl check out A Beautiful Life

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010


This photo is an example of my mind today. Here are the reasons why.

First of all, I can't remember where I took it or why. I have the date on my computer, but that has not jogged my memory. None of that is important though as I am only using it as a representation of my mind today.

Part of my mind wants to be analytical and serious as there are a great many things going on in the world near and far to ponder.

Another part wants to go to the Donald Pliner Trunk Show at Stanley Eisenman. Yet, I don’t really want to spend any money. My mind tells me I could just try the shoes on and another part of my brain says “yeah, right.”

An even larger part wants to be more productive by updating a couple of websites on which I should be working. But then my mind wonders, “Could I be more productive if I had a new camera, an iTV, or new golf clubs?” I know that does not make sense. Thus the dilemma in my head today. I just thought I would share my craziness. Are there any armchair psychologist out there?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Unfortunate Incidents

It has been four days since we purchased the Miracle Blades at the Texas State Fair. Three out of the four adults have now cut themselves with the knives. Surprisingly, Brett, has NOT cut himself, although he has a long history of cutting his hand with scissors and knives. Stay away from the Miracle Blades, Brett!

Our Hands 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A Wonderful Day

Saturday was a wonderful day. It was a day spent with grandchildren, children, cousins, in general, family.
Loved it!    

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook
Create your own scrapbook - Powered by Smilebox
A digital scrapbook by Smilebox

Friday, October 8, 2010

"Our State Fair is a Great State Fair"

Big Tex
 Wednesday afternoon, Barry and I met Brett, Shannon, and the grandkids at the State Fair of Texas. First of all, let me say, there is nothing like seeing the State Fair through the eyes of a six year old. Ben loved every minute. After we met them, we went through the kids Farm Experience. This is a really cute interactive experience where they see what it is like to live on a farm. At the end, they even get to sell their crops and buy something with their money.

Farmers Scarlett & Ben
Milking the Cow

Feeding the Chickens and gathering
the eggs
Planting Okra

Isn't this the cutest little farmer?
Delivering Goods to Market

This is the apple, oh, I mean flower of my eye. Ben gets that accolade because he was the only one to get into the flower. He is pretty precious though.

We always attend the Bird Show. The birds seemed to fly
closer to people's heads then ever before to the delight of all the children.

Ben decided we should ride the Texas Star Ferris Wheel. He has never done it before, but convinced us he thought it would be fun. He even convinced Scarlett. Brett and I were in from the first, but Barry and Shannon did not go along for personal reasons. (gets sick/ afraid of heights) 
Ben & Scarlett's first time on the Texas Star


This is the only picture of me from the fair. I let Scarlett take it
on the Ferris Wheel. Do not tell Barry I let a three year old hold my
camera while dangling above the city. (Next I am going to
work on her techniques. She has got to quit photographing me from her level.)

After some more food, we headed to the buildings. 

As luck would have it a knife demonstration was 
beginning. I do believe they had Barry, Shannon, 
and Ben when they saw this swan. Brett and I were laughing so hard at them during the presentation, that at one point Ben told me to stop laughing, this was serious. 

If you don't believe how hard Brett and I were laughing, here is the picture Brett took of Barry and Shannon with their knife purchases. Laughing while photographing with an iphone does not work. 
One day, Ben will be purchasing those knives at the State Fair.
The legacy lives on. 

We said our farewell to the Texas Star and headed home with our knives, stomachs full of fair food, and more good fair memories.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I've Done It Before, I Can Do It Again

It has been recommended that one should not make goals public. However, this is a very difficult goal, and I am going to need all the encouragement I can get. Here goes: I will quit drinking Diet Coke.  At one time, I went two years without drinking Diet Coke. Don't ask me why I started again, but I did. I am not even sure why I have made the decision to stop now. For some reason it just seems like the right thing to do.
Wish me luck.

Monday, October 4, 2010

I Can See Clearly

I know this is not an award winning photo, but I am hoping that you will be more impressed when you hear that I took this through my newly cleaned windows. Yesterday afternoon and this morning, I washed all my windows, indoors and out. This beautiful weather made it a very enjoyable task. 

I am not sure if it is this nice weather, the sinus medicine I am taking, or because I just finished reading Get-It-Done-Guy's 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More 

I probably don't need to work less, but I do need to accomplish more. 

Saturday, October 2, 2010

A Must Listen

Years ago I came across the Satellite Sisters on XM radio. They are five sisters that are witty, smart, and can have a conversation even though they don't always have the same opinions. They no longer have their radio show and went their separate ways for awhile. However, they are now podcasting again, and I am oh so happy.  Sister Julie just got back from North Korea and the podcast about this trip is a must listen. Julie is a world traveler. She has lived and traveled all over the world, so she is accustomed to the customs and rules of other countries. But, even North Korea was too much for her. I urge you to listen to this podcast. It is eye opening and, of course, makes one so thankful for the USofA.
Podcast about North Korea

Then listen to the other podcast and check out their blog. You will be glad you did.

A Name Change

Barry has been taking slight offense that this blog is named after him. He is becoming paranoid that I will write about everything he does. Maybe he has a point. So I am going to rename the blog. It will now be called Inside the BrierPatch. Do not worry though, I think Barry will still give me a lot to write about.

Here he is yesterday after he came home from his eye surgery. He is on the phone with Michelle, even though he thought he was speaking with Joanie. He's a hoot!

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Three Cs of our Golf Trip

When I was in college, I wrote a paper called the Three Cs of Horsemanship. The Cs stood for Control, Coordination, and uhmmm.... I can't remember the third C. Since that is in the past, I won't dwell on trying to remember that last C.

The Three Cs from our Golf Trip stand for car, cataracts, and cat. (I'm not even going to comment on how times have changed.) When I got to Houston on Thursday, I popped my trunk, took out my suitcase, and my trunk would not close. So Friday morning, I took my car to McGinnis Cadillac near Joanie's house. They fixed the trunk latch, and I was good to go or so I thought.

Fast forward to Monday. We are now in the Woodlands and our Retired Couple Golf Tournament began. We had just completed the first hole. Barry went to write down the score and turned to me and said, "I can't see out of my left eye. It is all blurry."  We are such stellar athletes, we went on with the game and didn't let on to our partners that Barry was going blind.

After the round, Barry decided that maybe he should have his eye checked out in case it was a detached retina a stroke, or some other permanent blinding condition.  He was able to get in with an opthamologist in the Woodlands and discovered that he had a clouding behind his lens which is common after cataract surgery.

Relieved, we returned to the Drury Inn and planned on going to a movie later (even though Barry wasn't sure he could see it since his eyes were dilated).  After visiting with our fellow golfers, we went out to our car. The battery was dead. Cadillac Roadside was called and, when they arrived, they replaced the battery. We were good to go, but not to the movie. We just went to bed.

Have I mentioned what time we were getting up for golf? Breakfast was at 6:00am and we were at the course by 7:00. It was not even light! Obviously these people did not understand the meaning of retired.

Even though Barry had only one eye, and I am not a good golfer, we placed third on Monday and our teams (we were on separate teams the next day) placed First and Second on Tuesday. Our secret? Good team members!

When we arrived home Tuesday evening, Joanie's cat, Bailey, was nowhere to be found. Bailey has been living with us since they moved, so I think officially he could be our cat. Wednesday morning, I put up signs and spent the rest of the day calling Animal Control and animal clinics. Then I rode around calling for him and shaking cat food. No Bailey.

Wednesday morning at 6:00am he was at the front door. (did he think he was playing golf or something?) I imagine someone had taken him in, because he is friendly and pretty.
However, when he bit them at 5:00am to let them know he wanted to be fed, he was probably kicked out. So, I got up and went out to pick up all the signs I put out all over the neighborhood.

It is Friday evening. Barry had his eye zapped today to fix the clouding. The cat doesn't seem to be upset that he was missing for twenty four hours, and the caddy is starting. Now I would just like to be able to write about one C- a catnap for me!