Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Snake in the Pantry

You've heard of Snakes on a Plane, but now I bring you....

Snake in the Pantry.

I kid you not.

Sunday night, I was getting ready for a bedtime snack of waffles (I know). I pulled out the waffle iron and then.....gasp:

See it? Look closer:

It was coiled up behind the waffle iron, on the knife sharpener. Scared the pee out of me.

I did what any self-respecting, capable and competent adult woman would do.

"Honey, there's a snake in the pantry. You have to get it out."

Y'all, my husband is a brave man. He really is. But....not so much in the snake department. Justin was, shall we say, a bit apprehensive about fetching the snake for me. My mother-in-law was there, and she also was completely useless. (I love you guys, I really do. Even if you are useless when there's a SNAKE IN THE PANTRY.)

I should clarify. Justin was willing to get the snake, but not in a manner that I was willing to endorse. He was all ready to get the hoe and start chopping, but I put my foot down. I will not, WILL NOT clean up snake blood from all over the inside of my pantry. I WILL NOT have hoe chops and blood stains on my new wood floor.

Hubby was less than enthusiastic about my proposal of BBQ tongs, so I was on my own.

Let me tell you, I got that bad boy. I was already in my bathrobe (see "bedtime" above), so I added boots and the one leather gardening glove that I could find:

(disclaimer: This picture is a reenactment, taken after the fact. Note the carefree laugh.)

I pinned him once with the tongs, but he wiggled out. He then proceeded to crawl all over the pantry, in and out of drawers, eventually settling in the corner behind the crock pot. When Justin pulled out the crock pot (with a ten foot pole), he coiled and hissed at us. Eventually I managed to pin him down with a drawer that I yanked out on his head and grabbed him with two pairs of tongs and threw him in the trash can. He was jumping around in there like crazy, trying to climb out, while I ran across the kitchen with the can, trying not to fall down in my cowboy boots. I kept knocking him back down with the tongs, and yelling "Open the door! Get out of my way! Open the door!" I threw the whole can out the back door, where the kitty Tiger took him down with relish.

Looking back, we probably could have killed it with a hoe without too much bloodshed. Maybe we'll try that next time.


Monday, September 15, 2008


the aftermath of hurricane ike has a strange feeling. we received absolutely no damage; in fact the rain was a benefit. but i have many friends who have no electricity and leaky roofs.

i just saw three black hawk helicopters fly down 290 right out my front door.

on the news i see palettes of FEMA "meal replacement equivalents" being unloaded by guys in camo in familiar areas of houston, near where i used to live. (i'm dying to know if they're any good.)

even my brenham walmart is eerily low on supplies. milk, meat, eggs, water, all completely empty. the parking lot is full of cars and RV's. all of the hotels in our area are full of evacuees.

i just saw an arial view of the energy company headquarters. they had hundreds of trucks. they're bringing crews in from out of state to try to get service back up. i saw several energy trucks going down the highway toward houston this morning. insurance company mobile units, also.

it's always a strange feeling to be on the receiving end of this sort of thing. i'm not receiving any aid or anything, but a city that i love is, and it's weird. i'm used to seeing these images on the news and thinking of them as the other side of the world. but this time they're not. they're close, and familiar.


Saturday, September 13, 2008

still hunkering

we made it just fine. no flooding or damage in our area. just some wind and rain.

houston is mostly without power. any of my houston friends are welcome to come bunk with us. not that you can read this, i guess.

stay safe.


Friday, September 12, 2008

hunker down

i haven't decided yet how i feel about the phrase "hunker down," but i just saw someone on cnn use it with a straight face.

but that's what i'm doing. we're officially in the zone for "hurricane force winds" of 75+mph. the wind is starting to pick up, and it feels weird because it's from the north. you wouldn't think that would be a big deal, but it feels all wrong. the trees look funny, like they're not used to bending that way. the animals are acting weird. the rooster has been crowing all day, and the goats are bleating and restless. justin is letting them into the backyard so they can "hunker down" on the back porch. their barn isn't built yet. this morning we had scores of birds in our pond, fleeing from somewhere.

the white zone is for the 75+ wind. we live by the "m" in brenham.

i was going to load up on flashlights, but heb was sold out of everything except "high school musical" flashlights, so i've got five of those.

it is nice to live close enough to watch houston news. it's been live coverage all day. it's strange to see galveston, where i've been a thousand times. the street that my mil used to live on is underwater; i saw her building on tv.

well, i'd better go fill up the bathtub. i'll post in the morning if i have electricity.


Monday, September 8, 2008

wish me luck

Tomorrow is the big day! My licensing exam will be tomorrow and Wednesday.

It's all computerized. The first day and a half are multiple choice, then second afternoon is case-based. It's a strange software with simulated cases. I am presented with a patient and brief history ("65 year old man presents to the emergency room with chest pain"), and then I take it from there. If I want to know vital signs, I click on "order sheet" and type "vital signs" as an order. I don't get any information that I don't ask for . Or I can type "appendectomy" if that's what is needed. (Better not do that for Mr. Chest Pain, though. That would be bad.) Simulated time passes, so if I wait too long to remember the EKG, my patient could die. It's a very odd little software program.

I'm trying to think of it as a video game.

I feel ready, though. Studying has gone well. I could learn more with more time, but I am somewhat back in shape. It feels good to use these old muscles, clear some cobwebs from my brain. The first week or two of studying I couldn't focus for more than an hour or two. But yesterday I made six hours straight with only short breaks, and I could have done lots more if it wasn't time for church. I am happy about the progress I've made.

Big thanks to everyone who's helped out during this time of studying. Thanks to Mamaw and Beth for all of the hours of babysitting so I could study. Thanks to Sandra at the cafe for the gallons and gallons of sweet tea. And thanks honey for your support. I couldn't do it without you.


"I can't do it by myself"

Listen to what my son just said to me:

Mommy, we've got to clean up this house. There's food on the floor. I'll get the vacuum.

5 minutes later, tangled up with the vacuum hose:

Mommy, can you help me with the vacuum?

10 minutes later, after successfully vacuuming the kitchen:

Mommy, we have GOT to clean up this dad-gum house. There's play-doh and toys on the floor. It's a big, big mess. You've got to help me. I can't do it by myself. I'll get the toys. Will you please put away the cereal?

I promise I'm not a slave driver. I really don't make him clean the house. I did help him after that. ; )


Saturday, September 6, 2008

school supplies

Does this make anyone else as happy as it makes me?

All that's missing is a bunch of sharp, yellow, real wood #2 pencils. But I never use pencils so I couldn't justify it.

Don't you just want to go write in a college ruled notebook?


Thursday, September 4, 2008

Into the fray

i haven't yet committed to a position in the upcoming election. there are things i like about both candidates, and dislike about both. i feel strongly about issues on both sides. but i have to put my two cents in about one issue. so many christians out there are all riled up about a woman in authority. so here's where i stand, in case anyone was wondering.

some may be confused who recall that i was a deacon at our last church. allow me to remedy that confusion. deacon in that church, and at christ church today, was not a position of authority. that authority is concentrated on the elder board. deacon is a position of service, much like a "waiter" in original context. i hope that helps for clarity.

another qualification: the council for biblical manhood and womanhood is generally a great resource. i don't agree with 100% of their writings, in particular the harshly patriarchal tone some authors take. but i like the article linked above.

Christ Church

Visit Stephanie's blog for an update on Christ Church.


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Tag....I'm It

I was never good at sports. Why does blog tag feel like a sport to me? I'm having flashbacks to 6th grade PE, playing dodgeball in the gym. (How many of my Durant friends read this? Who can be the first to name the girl we were so scared of in dodgeball? I mean, it seriously hurt when she tagged you. I remember her name, but I'm interested to see who gets it first....Beth.)

But this time I'm tagged virtually. No gym uniform, no running around in the midday sun on a playground, so I'm game.

The tagging rules:
1. Post the rules on your blog
2. Write 6 random things about yourself
3. Tag 6 people at the end of your post
4. If you're tagged, DO IT and pass on the tag

I've been stalling because I didn't think I could think of 6 random things. But I'll try. Here goes:

1. I faked gym. See above. As in, when my parents asked "How do you like soccer in PE?" My response was that it was a little harder to PRETEND you were actually playing than some of the other sports. Softball, for example: you can just stand there in left field. Of course I'm not going to catch anything. I duck from the ball like Buster Bluth. But at least I don't have to run up and down the field while I'm faking.

2. Parenting came about as naturally to me as being an astronaut.

3. I almost broke up with Justin when we had just started dating because I didn't feel "called" to be a pastor's wife. Too opinionated, too independent, too likely to seek employment.... maybe I should run for vice president.

4. In medical school, I was always the one to raise my hand and ask a stupid question. I realized I would much rather do that than get caught bluffing. I always had people say things to me later like "I'm so glad you asked that; I didn't know either but I was too embarrassed to ask." Not me. I would literally raise my hand in front of a hundred people and say "I'm sorry, but I don't understand what that picture is. Would you please explain it?"

The ability to ask lots of questions without embarrassment is one of the best things I learned in medical school. It has served me well. I ask Justin stupid Bible questions all the time, and I know I drove our builder crazy. ("I'm sorry, I don't understand these symbols on the blueprints. Will you please explain them all to me?")

5. I have always wanted to drive an eighteen wheeler. Maybe it's something to do with my maiden name.

6. I grew up on country music, and it still feels like home to me. Not the new stuff, nothing described as "young country" or "today's country". I'm talking about Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, George Jones, Willie Nelson, Patsy Cline. My first concert as a small child was Willie Nelson. (My first concert "for me" was Michael Jackson Thriller.)

Well, there's my 6. I tag:

Beth Anderson, Jen Lokey, Heather Hendricks, and Lynsey Kramer.