Sunday, August 21, 2011

Some random thoughts...

I threw my back out on Saturday morning. This has happened before, but not for about four years. The first time (about ten years ago) was the worst and most painful. Back then, all I did was twist the wrong way and was in agonizing pain right at the base of my spine. While suffering through the next week, it literally took me about two minutes to go from a sitting position to standing. And getting out of bed was a real acrobatic endeavor...trying to find the least painful way to get my feet on the floor and into a vertical position...the kind of pain that takes your breath away. I went to a chiropractor back then and even though I would feel better immediately after the treatments, I really don't think it did much good. It took about two weeks to get back to normal.

So, this time, I was just putzing around in the house on Saturday morning and bent down to pick something up off the floor and BAM!!! I could feel that "ripping" in my lower back and the first thing that came to my mind was, "Shit!" I stood back up and knew that it had reared its ugly head again. It's the kind of pain where I can't bend over very far...if I need to pick up something off the floor, I need to totally bend at the knees, not over at the waist...and I can't stand up totally straight without feeling pain. Maybe I need to invest in one of these...

Anyway, this time is not nearly as bad as the first, but it still hurts. In between these bouts (which is years) I don't have any back pain whatsoever and can do just about include picking things up off the floor. Weird. I've kind of decided that it's based on stress, because the four times it's happened have been during stressful times. I think I need to unstress my life.

So yesterday I pretty much babied myself and stayed at home watching Redbox movies. I discontinued my cable a few months ago, because it was TOTALLY not worth the $100 per month. The boys hardly ever watched it and I would just watch reruns of HGTV and Food Network, so I canceled it...and haven't regretted it. Renting $1.30 Redbox movies every once in awhile is a LOT cheaper and no commercials.

I like a good scary movie, so I picked this one up...

I've always really liked Anthony Hopkins, but, boy, he sure looked older in this one. I googled it and discovered that he's 75 years old...was born in 1937!! I had no clue he was that old! Well, he still looks pretty good for that age. And I can only hope that I'm still that active at that age. (Although I don't think anyone would want to see me on the big screen.)

I also watched this movie about the surfing teenage girl who had her arm bitten off by a shark in Hawaii. Okay, so it's a totally "fluff" movie, but, that's right...I had the kleenex out. By the way, it was Carrie Underwood's debut at acting. She played the family's church activities director. (I think she should stick with offense...just saying.) Anyway, this teenage girl survives the attack and goes on to compete (and win) in surfing competitions. It totally made me feel like a woos for whining about a little back least I still have my arms.

I told you this post was definitely is. I recently read this book...and loved it. I don't think I need to explain it because it's become popular due to the movie they recently made about it.

Three work friends and I went to see it last Friday and it was really good. They did a good job of casting the characters. Out of the four of us, three read the book first. All of us agreed that the book was better because it went into more detail and was easier to follow. I'll have to say, however, that one of my favorite scenes was when Minny tells Hilly about the special ingredient in her chocolate pie, upon which Sissy Spacek (Hilly's mother) bursts into laughter. I liked the character Spacek plays and can definitely see me being there someday...haha!

I was the oldest person in our group and I told them that I was about 7 or 8 years old when this book was supposedly written. I lived in St. Louis at the time and wasn't aware of people having black maids there, but I definitely remember the racial unrest going on in the country. I can also remember sitting in second grade when I heard that John F. Kennedy was shot...and sitting with my family in the living room when the astronauts landed on the moon. That was such a crazy time during the 60s and 70s and SOOOO incredibly different than the current times. Between the hippies, the drugs, the Vietnam War and racial issues, it was a turbulent era. Everyone was so different and no one hesitated to voice their opinion or dared to be different. Now, it seems that society has become generic. While there were serious problems back then, people banded together to support whatever cause. Now everyone is content to have their flat screen TVs, granite counter tops and I-phones while ignoring everything going on around them. Okay, I'll get off my soap box now.

So when I woke up this morning, I literally rolled (very slowly) out of bed and shuffled out to the coffee maker. The pain was worse than yesterday, but that's because I had been horizontal for the previous eight hours. My son took me out to breakfast and it took me about a minute to get into and out of the car. He said, "Is this what it's going to be like when you're 80?" Haha...I raised my sons to have such a great sense of humor. (I then told him I was cutting him out of the will.)

Determined to overcome the pain, I decided to head down to New Braunfels for the Gruene Market Days. It had been a long time since I had been there and I wanted to see if they had any different vendors. One shop had these HUGE wind chimes hanging from the trees. This photograph doesn't do it justice, but the poles on this thing were literally about six feet in length. The sound it was making was really cool, but if the wind was strong, that could be a real hazard! If one of those things bopped someone in the head, that could cause some serious damage! And you'd definitely need a truck to tote one of these around....not to mention the difficulty in hanging it up. "Sold! Just toss it into the back seat of my Elantra." Haha!

I think these rain catcher thingies are really cool. I saw these for the first time on HGTV. But you need to be in a state other than Texas to see them work. No rain predicted here for the rest of the year. Kind of a waste of money here.

I remember seeing this guy playing this instrument the last time I was here. He was really good...played very smooth, jazzy kind of music. When I passed by, he was playing "Unchained Melody" by the Righteous Brothers...

...which always reminds me of the love scene between Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore in "Ghost"...a wonderful scene and a wonderful movie. It's hard to believe that Patrick Swayze is gone.

On that note, after ten minutes in 105 degree temps, back pain and nothing new at Market Days, I thought to myself, "What the hell am I doing here???" I got back into the car and headed to JCPenney to take advantage of the '$10 off a $25 purchase' coupon burning a hole in my purse...not to mention the air conditioning.

Like I said...a random post.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


So, I was bored the other day and started playing with Photoshop. I decided to try the inverse technique on some of my Mexico photos. This is amazingly simple with Photoshop, and definitely creates a unique effect.

Probably my favorite...

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I wish it would rain...

Texas weather sucks. No rain, ever...and temps over 100 degrees every single damn day. If it does rain, it lasts for about five minutes. It really makes me wonder why I moved here. Everything is scrubby brown. You walk a couple of blocks and you feel like you've walked about 100 blocks because of the heat. You walk from your house to the to to car...and back to the house because it's too damned hot to spend any amount of time outside. Your seat belt becomes a branding iron. Every day I wake up hoping I'll see some rain clouds...but nothing but blue skies and blazing temps. They say that people who live in climates that get a lot of rain get depressed. But I think it's equally true about people who live in climates where it never rains. I miss those midwestern thunderboomers where the crack of thunder is so loud you can feel it in your chest...or the days where it would just drizzle all day which makes you want to cuddle up with a book. I guess it's all about a little variety...and there's no variety in Texas. Every single day is exactly the same. Sometimes I think that one day Texas is just going to explode into a fireball because of the incredible heat with no rain.

I was watering my flowers tonight...which I do every single day otherwise they would die...and I noticed this beauty.

My yellow hibiscus doesn't bloom nearly as much as my red one does. So when the yellow one makes its appearance, I am always amazed by its perfection. Believe me, the water on the petals is not from's from my daily watering to keep it alive.

I watched a video recently about how the world is running out of fresh water. Places become so dry that when it does rain, the ground can't absorb the water so it just runs off back into the rivers and ocean...which negatively affects the whole ecosystem. That is definitely the case in Texas. Private individuals and companies are slowly purchasing water rights around the world which are going to affect each and every one of us some day. Water will probably eventually become as expensive as gas...if not more.

Okay...I'll get off my soap box. For now, I just wish it would rain.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Weekend Project

I was bored this past weekend, so I decided to make a stained glass project using my leftover pieces of glass from prior projects. There's no real rhyme or reason to it...just wanted to duplicate some of the wonderful colors of Mexico.

Here it is with the light coming through...looks a little church-like.

Anyway, my son said I should do one of my Frida print hanging in my house. Hmmm...that would be a challenge...but really cool. Food for thought.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Beautiful Bougainvillea...

When I plant flowers in the summer, I try to duplicate the ones I see in Mexico. Every time I go out or come home, I am always a little amazed by my beautiful Bougainvillea...a little reminder of my adventures south of the border. Sure, it's pretty small...

...compared to this beauty in Puerto Morelos, but I marvel at the vibrant color, especially considering the scorching rainless heat in Texas these days.

If I stood out in the sun for 12 hours every single day in 100+ temps, I guarantee I would not look this good.

I wish I was in Mexico.