The Old Gray Mare, She Ain’t What She Used to Be

Lulu needs a new car, y’all.  Case in point:

If you know me, I’m quite sure that you are deathly ill of hearing me talk about the old girl.  Slowly, but surely, she is falling apart—one small piece at a time.  Since 2001, I have been driving a 1998 Buick Century, which we gratefully inherited from GR’s aunt.  I was 31 years old at the time I started driving it—way too young to be driving such a grandmotherly car.

At the time we took possession of the car, I was driving a newly purchased 2000 Honda Accord that I cherished, adored, and swooned over.  Because we didn’t really have a need to keep both cars, our options were to either sell the Buick (which only had 19K miles at the time…practically new!), go on a fabulous vacation, and continue making payments on the Honda, or sell the Honda, take a minor hit on the balance, and be car payment free.  Obviously, we chose to sell the cherished, adored, and swooned over one.  And then I cried and started sprouting grey hairs.  My carefree days of cruising down the road with the sunroof open and stereo blasting were over.  At the age of 31, Lulu turned very old, very quickly.  I even started listening to AM radio, which I have found that I am quite fond of.

Fast forward almost 10 years, and the Buick is still running strong.  Granted, there have been minor issues along the way (not including the increase of Lulu’s grey hairs)…

  • There are no longer cup holders in the car.  They were flimsy, flip-over holders to begin with, and they have all been broken off.  Therefore, I have cola and coffee stains all over the floor carpet.
  • Windshield wipers fly off randomly.  Usually when it rains.
  • Hubcaps fly off randomly.  I have replaced all four hubcaps at one time or another.  Hence, the car has been dubbed the Ghetto Granny Mobile.  Yesterday, I had the brake pads and rotors replaced, and the technician was unsure if he could put the hubcaps back on due to the disintegrating plastic screws that hold them on to the wheel.  I lost one today, as you might have noticed in the picture above.
  • My heater no longer works.  Thank goodness for warmer weather.
  • The back driver-side window motor no longer works, causing the window to continuously slip down slightly.  At one point, GR duct-taped the window so it would stay up, but he duct-taped it on the outside of the window—adding to the appeal of the ghetto-ness of it all.  I made him remove the tape.  I’ve actually replaced the front window motor myself with instructions found on the internet, but Lulu has been too lazy to fix the back one…plus do I really want to spend $100 for the part?  I think not.  I have my eye on a bottle of Chanel Chance.
  • One of the buttons on the thermostat control has broken off due to my continued adjusting of the temperature.  One minute Lulu is hot, one minute she is cold.  A sunroof could quite possibly remedy that situation.
  • At one point, there was a leak causing water to flood my passenger-side floorboard when it rained.  I’m surprised that there’s not a hole rusted into the bottom of the car—similar to a sunroof but without the benefits.

See?  Minor issues, right?  I am currently 2K miles away from hitting the 200K mark.  That, y’all, is an accomplishment.  And now, I am contemplating the idea of putting the old girl out to pasture.  I turn 40 this year, and I have sworn that I will not go into my middle-ish-age years driving an old woman car.  Isn’t it about time for my mid-life crises to hit?  Shouldn’t I be driving this…

Sigh.  Actually, it will most likely be this…

At least it has hubcaps.


For the Love of Saturday.  And a spiraling staircase.

Gosh, it’s been like forever and a day since I’ve done a Saturday .  Yet, here I am, all caught up in it again.  For those of you who don’t know what the Saturday Photo Hunt is, just go here.  TN Chick will explain.  Basically, you post a picture each Saturday related to a theme that TN Chick picks.  Easy-peasy.

Today’s theme is spiral.  Not so easy-peasy.  At first, I thought about posting a picture of myself with a spiral perm…but then I thought better.  I’ve already taken you on Lulu’s journey of bad hair once before.  There is no need to subject you to that again.  It ain’t pretty, and I do not want to relive it.  Hence, my post involves the “somewhat” of a spiraling staircase that GR and I climbed at Amicalola Falls this past fall.

It all starts here…at the beginning of the beautiful Appalachian Trail.


After a short trek on the trail, you end up here—at this warning sign.


And then, much like my husband the health nut, you must fill your lungs with tobacco smoke and toxins to help with the strenuous walk up the 425 spiraling stairs…


And once you’ve hacked and coughed your way up the stairs…


You can take in these glorious views…


I can’t wait to go back in the spring!  Have a great Saturday, y’all!

Side note:  For those of you who truly, madly, deeply care about Lulu and have discovered that some of my past posts no longer show pictures, please note that I am still working on uploading those lost photos.  It’s a tragedy on a grand scale, but I am determined to win the battle.  Thank you.


Zoloft Island

Y’all, Lulu has tumbled into the Great Depression of Mass Proportions.  If there is such a place as Zoloft Island, somebody needs to put me on a plane there—ASAP—and I’m willing to pay my weight in Girl Scout cookies to get there.  Grab a tissue and let Lulu explain.

You see, I have been working at home for the past six months.  Count them, six torturous months.  The office building where I make a 72-mile round-trip trek to every weekday was heavily damaged during the Great Georgia Flood of 2009.  And to be honest, the damage wasn’t actually caused by the September flooding, but it sounds way more exciting than what actually happened.  We had a water pipe burst causing two inches of water to run amok and flow freely throughout the building.  Lives were not lost, people, but my soul has been deeply wounded.  I have turned into a depressed, hermitized, gluttonous, unhygienic, socially unacceptable, empty shell of a person.  Sad examples:

  • On several occasions, I have spent two straight days in a row never changing out of my pajamas—much to GR’s chagrin.
  • Some weeks, I never left the house.  God forbid, that would be cause for me to take a shower and apply makeup.  And to change out of pajamas.
  • When I do actually get out, it’s generally to the bank drive-through or Wal-Mart.  Two places where it really doesn’t matter if you wear pajamas.  In fact, it’s fairly acceptable.
  • The pantry has become my safe-haven of love and support.  Hence, the extra 6 or 7 pounds I have put on.
  • I have fallen in love with Drew Carey.  And possibly Judge Judy.
  • I spend time at my mailbox of hate waiting on the mail lady to stop by just so I can have someone to talk to.  Some days, I think that she skips my house on purpose.  I can’t understand why.
  • I have actual conversations with GR.

Quite obviously, I am not a work-at-home kind of person.  Left to my own vices, I could easily turn into the 1-ton, recluse woman who has to be crane-lifted from her home.  It’s entirely possible, y’all.

I am also severely depressed about the state of my home office.  I have no “before” picture, but let me assure you, it does not look like this:


I cringe at the mere sight of it.  A home office that actually looks like it’s used as a home office.  I am appalled.

Alas, there is good news on the horizon.  On Monday, March 22, Lulu will be freed from this prison.  I will be returning here:


And I will be burning my pajamas.  Unfortunately, they don’t exactly pass the dress code.


Mammas don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys

For the past couple of weeks (in between desperately trying to upload my lost blog pictures), I have been utilizing the creative side of my incredibly shrinking brain to help plan a baby shower for a cousin’s wife.  And let me preface this by saying that in all of my 39 (eh-hum) years, I have neither attended nor help plan as many baby showers in the span of a 6 month period—four to be exact.  If there’s something in the water, I respectfully and mercilessly request that you serve me a Corona Light with a lime instead.  Lulu does a fairly good job with other people’s babies, but is not so much in need of one of her own at this time.  Been there, done that—have the 20-year old to prove it.

For this shower, we planned a cowboy theme.  Because nothing says cute, cuddly, and baby like this…


Why, hello there Mr. Cowboy!  Unfortunately, he was not in attendance, as I am quite sure he was performing at an entirely different kind of party.  The kind of party that only exists in Lulu’s incredibly shrinking brain.  But I digress.  Our party involved this type of cute and cuddly cowboy…

Which I incorporated into the shower invitations…


I also painstakingly rubber-banded 96 tiny, newborn-size diapers in order to create this cowboy-themed diaper cake.  I’m pretty sure that I’ve lost all feeling in my right index finger and came dangerously close to snapping out an eyeball.  Don’t try this at home, people.


I made Cowboy Cookies for take-aways, which were AMAZINGLY delicious if I say so myself!  The Girl Scout cookies that are camped out in my spare bedroom ain’t got nothin’ on these babies.  Or is that the other way around?  Regardless, the recipe is apparently Laura Bush’s recipe, as posted by Helen over at Cowgirl Cuisine.  For an extra touch, I stuck them on 7″ cookie sticks (while they were still hot), decorated them with chocolate icing, wrapped them in cellophane, tied them up with matching ribbons, and yee-haw!  Cowboy cookies in a basket.


I’m thinking that I could use this idea in the future for a cookie bouquet, no?  Cute, snappy, fun.  Much like Lulu in her twenties.

And we displayed it all on a table covered with a white table cloth topped with a vase of white daisies and cowboy confetti…


Because Lulu is such a control freak and abnormally OCD about party details, I convinced Tiff (my hairdresser, dear friend, cousin’s wife, and cohort in this shower) to color-coordinate the food.  Which she did.


There was actually more food, but I’m quite sure I was spazzed out about a napkin being misaligned and forgot to take a picture.

The cake was made by a young friend of Tiff’s who is just learning pastry techniques and methods.  It was magically delicious, and I think that she did a wonderful job!


It turned out to be a beautiful shower with a fun theme.  And much to my chagrin, not a cookie was spared.  Like Lulu needs another freaking cookie…