Louisiana, gulf, bayous, Mississippi River, Atchafalaya River, Bayou Teche, Bayou Black, Bayou Blue, Bayou Vista, Lake Ponchatrain, Vermillionville, Breaux Bridge, Berwick, seafood, crawfish, mudbug, shrimp, oyster, crab, catfish, alligators, eagles, egrets, bear, deer, swamps, boudin, cajun, french, creole, camp house, light house, plantation, antebellum, etoufee, gumbo, po-boys, river boats, work boats, push boats, shrimp boats, tug boats, house boats, bridges, draw bridge, lift bridge, railroad bridge, oil wells, oil platforms, oil off-shore, oil spill, sugar cane, rice fields, strawberries, cabbage, sweet potatoes, okra, black-eyed peas, pecans, naval oranges, lemons, pick it yourself satsumas,  cypress trees, oak trees, spanish moss, camellias, casinos, loose slots,  Hot Sauce, Cajun Chef, Zatarains, Tony Chachere, Tabasco, Abita Beer, daquaris, beignets, Community Coffee, Chicory, football, parties, Saints, super-bowl, LSU, Mardi Gras, purple, gold, green, parties, parades, floats, parties, kings, queens, king cakes, the baby,  parties, New Orleans, Nawlans, NOLA, Jazz, French Quarter, Oak Street, street cars, Tipitinas, hurricanes, flood gates, fleur de lis, festivals, shrimp festival, po-boy festival, jazz festival, petroelum festival, strawberry festival, parties, O yea baby.....just sayin'



On a lighter note ~ we have some uninvited guests in our RV. 
Lady bugs! 
 Those sweet little critters that I loved to let crawl on my arms
 when I was supposed to be picking  Mama's garden
 or hoeing weeds in Daddy's cotton patch have invaded.
 Ted thinks his job is to count them...
I guess these gals are having a little conference.
Are they are like my Tuesday lunch bunch back at home,
catching up on all the latest?
Maybe it's a ladybug Bible Study!

Or maybe they're saying - 
"Isn't it incredible that the One who created 125 billion galaxies made us too?"

Never the less, I guess I'd better get them outside in case they are discussing their due dates!



Today I was feeling a little "lumbie"
(that's a term Harrison coined as a toddler
begging his Papa for a coke). 
It was a good afternoon to visit the lake with my folding chair, journal, camera, and questions. 
My heaviness was for so many of my friends and relatives who are battling serious health issues and will never fully recover, as well as an awareness of my own aging body. 
 I was asking God the hard stuff -
What about our prayers for these? 
What about those who faithfully serve you?
What about the one who has steadfastly believed
that he would be healed, but is now dying? 
What about the tired caretakers? 
 What about me and my mortality?

The answer was right there in front of me:
 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror;
then we shall see face to face.
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully,
even as I am fully known." 
(1 Corinthians 13:12)

There are just things I will not understand this side of heaven, and then it won't matter
 - so it must not matter now. 
But I do know that God is still on His throne,
that He loves my friends,
and that He loves me. 

And like the reflection of the gray leafless trees 
on the still water, 
 I pray that I will be a reflection of Him,
no matter what season of life I am in.


Morning Has Broken

Something in me just needs to look out the door first thing every morning.  Maybe the country girl in me just needs to see out - make sure all is still well in the world - or just feel the morning air. 

This morning I stuck my head out, grabbed my camera, pulled a hoodie over my sweats and flip-flopped my way to the lake for a better view of the sun blazing in the east. 

As I watched it change, I wondered....
How will the sky look when HE comes?
HE will come from the east, won't HE?
Will the ducks, and the ravens, and the eagles
 be praising HIM, too?
Will the majestic glory of the morning
call me outside to witness
HIM returning in all HIS majesty and glory?
I sure hope so.


Scenic Byways of Louisiana

We grabbed the leftover crawfish tails and some Louisiana Strawberries for breakfast as we headed out the door
 for a day of exploring. 

The backroads from Berwick to Breaux Bridge (Bro Bridge) are advertised as being a scenic route.  And we passed many beautiful antebellum (that means pre-civil war)  homes - but the man doesn't stop for his lady to take pictures,  This was a picture of something I thought was beautiful!

But I did manage to get a few good pictures at stop lights:

...and through the windshield

As we were driving along, we talked about building a new house - a shop building with a  kitchen, bedroom, and bath with a jacuzzi tub, and a place to park the rv.  Then we passed our dream house (and this time the man stopped for a picture):

We strolled the sidewalks of old Breaux Bridge, shopped antique stores and an ate at a wonderful french cajun cafe - Cafe Des Amis.  They tickled our taste buds with gumbo, turtle soup, shrimp & grits, and white chocolate bread pudding. So far - it's won our vote for best in Louisiana. 

From there we headed south to see what the
 Gulf of Mexico looks like in La.
We didn't seen any oil spill, but did see a lot of debris from the sugar cane harvest.

Here's a great boat in the bayou view from a bridge. 
(While driving, of course!)
 The smoke in the background is burning sugar cane fields.

But the highlight of the day must have been getting to see Louisiana Black Bear

and of course, we stopped for pictures!
It was a great day!



 I can't let this day pass without a post -
if for no other reason than today's date.

  A facebook friend in North Dakota posted that today -
1/11/11 at 1:11 the temperature was 1 degree. 
How cool is that?  Yeah - pretty darn cool as in cold...
 Here is Southern Louisiana I am freezing at 45. 
I would have never made it in the North Land!

In fact, a camillia is still blooming here in the RV park:

it started me thinking about how everyplace we've been
 has both good and bad.

Louisiana has navel oranges, satsumas, tangerines, sweet potatoes, strawberries, and camillias in the winter.
But the summers host sweltering heat with high humidity, and of course the occasional hurricane.

North Dakota has mild summers, lush rolling prairie grass, wheat fields, corn fresh from the field and chokecherries.
But they have had (so far) 55 inches of snow this winter
and below zero temps.
I wonder,what do they do with all that snow?

The RV picture window overlooked a scenic vista in New Mexico complete with antelope and jackrabbits.
But it was parked in a man camp 40 miles from anything
and the sign on the gate said,
"Watch for Rattlesnakes"

Then there's West Texas
home of the most beautiful sunsets in the world
 and beautiful lacy mesquite trees,
 and heat and cold, and wind and snakes.

But they all have wonderful folks that have stolen our hearts
and that is the best part of any place we've been.



During the Christmas Holiday we celebrated two birthdays.
Ted's was the 20th and Hannah's was the 30th.
We try to make sure the Christmas babies
don't have a Christmas birthday.
No gifts wrapped in Christmas paper.
Nothing retreived from under the tree.
Ted's favorite cake is german chocolate,
 which Harrison and I made from scratch.
Hannah's favorite is cupcakes from Gigi's.

Holly and Tommy's house is an apartment inside a barn. 
They will live there until the house is built out front.
There's not a lot of room for a big table,
 so we set up outside the house in the shop area.
Not pretty, but very functional.

There's always been a special bond between these two,
right from the beginning.

Happy Birthday Papa!
Happy Birthday Hannah!


Swamps and Bayous

Last weekend, we took a drive out Four Mile Road.
We were driving between a bayou and a swamp -
the road got a little swampy in places.

The locals say the alligators will be out on a warmer day.

Looking over a little wooden bridge

And here's a little $42,000 home for sale in the bayou.
(It's a little houseboat, recently remodeled)

Behind this gate is some guys camp house. 
A lot of local men have camps where they go on weekends
and do whatever men do at camps!
This one is right by the road,
but some are only accessible by swamp boat.

Wasn't it smart of God not to make
every place on the earth the same.?
It makes travel really interesting.


New Orleans Saints

Today we drove into New Orleans (70 miles) to catch some of the festivities at the Saints last season game.  The tickets were sold out and we were warned that scalpers sell counterfeit tickets, so we just walked around and looked at the fans.  We did find Champions Square across from the dome - the game was playing on a big screen and food was available from area restaurants.  Here's some of what we took in:

Ted in front of Champions Square

Here are some of the most interesting fans:
This guy must be a musician.
His scarf looks like piano keys.

An umbrella?
Not a cloud in the sky.

What a hat - must be a Texan!

And how about this hat?
It still had the price tag on it.

And me in front of the Louisiana Super Dome
(the same one that housed 30,000 Katrina victims)

Go Saints!
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