Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Beast Witches this Special Day!

1926 - On this date, Magician Harry Houdini dies of gangrene and peritonitis that developed after his appendix ruptured. (from Wiki)

The Colors of Death...
Lately, as I drive around our fair city, I've found myself staring at the trees-alot. Trees are among my favorites, they have so much character. They have a 'spirit', and there is just something about them that mesmerizes me. But lately, just in the last couple of weeks alone, they have taken on their fall brilliance, the reds, yellows, golden orange... look beautiful! But looking around the world, and with all the things going on with my Dad and all this weekend it began to seem so morose to me. What we pine for, what we just can't wait for, these fall colors in all their glory, became a symbol of death to me. All of the things that are alive and lush and green all summer long, become their most beautiful just before dying. It's like their 'death rattle'... we're seeing the last gasp, so-to-speak. Sounds crazy, I know... but it occurred to me. We don't see humans the same, when a person is near death they can be dreadful to look at, depending on cause of death I guess... just seems ironic and unfair... the colors of death.

Happy Halloween, or Happy Samhain depending on your culture and heritage... I will always love this time of year... no matter what. And why not bring in some good imagery in honor of death. It IS a part of life, we have to deal with it. It would be nice not to think of it in such a horrible fashion... Nobody wants to fear losing the things and people that they love, but it happens. The important part is to make sure that you have many wonderful memories to cherish, something wonderful that will allow them to live on in our hearts always.

Well, given that here is my piece of useless Halloween/Samhain trivia... please indulge yourself with caution... :)

Samhain in Modern popular culture

Also, please take a second to read some Titilating Info on Halloween at Wiki

And please, have a safe and happy All Hallow's Eve... from your Aunt Jackie ;) Here are some "special treats" too cute not to share!!!

Little Happy Things

Things I did today that made me smile:
  • Talked to my mother and sister on the phone
  • Bought some DVDs on sale at Tower Records at 30% off at lunch
  • Consequently got 'Alice and Chains - Unplugged' DVD for Mr. J, just for no reason at all but to see him smile
  • Bought some Squirrel Food at The Peanut Shoppe and fed squirrels and pigeons at the park on the way back from lunch
  • Leaned down and hand-fed one brave pigeon who took a peanut right out of my hand
  • Ate a York Peppermint Patty with my plain black coffee this afternoon
(Guess little things really do mean alot)

October Rains Down

Nearly the end here, today being the last day of this month... Bit of an absence for me, I know. Must apologize but My Father, who you can meet here if you haven't yet, was admitted to the hospital over the weekend with diabetic issues (somewhat self-inflicted). His sugar level was around 33 (which is near diabetic coma levels). He's tough. I know he is tough, but he is very hard headed and he won't do the things that he needs to do for his health; If you tell him he 'can't' do something, or he 'can NOT' have this or that, then his level of stubbornness doubles... so it has been an emotional and draining weekend. I worry about my sweet Mother, who just had a cataract removed on Wednesday, and so should've enjoyed some extra time to recuperate from that. No such luck, I guess as usual, a woman's work is never done when taking care of all of you men! You could cop us a break once in a while, especially because we take such good care of you.

Moving along, today is Halloween. It's a rainy one so far here in Memphis. It's not fun for me anymore like it used to be... I have no reason to get dressed up and go out and try to have a good time. I guess the holidays are all a bit like that anymore... Sorry to sound a bit down, maybe I should've waited to post for a few days, but isn't blogging supposed to be a bit of a journal anyway? A public one but still, a journal and an outlet, which is really why I started writing on it. Still, Fall and Winter are my favorite seasons and I will make the best of them.

**Update: I just heard from my mother & sisters that Dad can come home today. They are going to change him over from insulin shots to a pill form of medication, so I think that should be easier to administer, so he doesn't have to sit and take those shots, possibly giving himself overdoses. Maybe that will be easier on everyone, especially him... So my sister, Jeanne, is going to assist them in getting home and getting settled in properly since I had to return back to work today to play a little catch up... I'm relieved for that. My father holds much more affection for his big screen t.v. and satellite dish than he does that tiny Hospital t.v. and terrible bed. :)

I'll be back later, with a more suitable All Hallow's Eve message... but meanwhile, i'll leave you with this cute photo sent to me by a friend. Treasure your friends and loved ones everyone, and let them know how much they mean to you! -A.J.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Live Today

Not alot of time today, so I'll leave you with this quote by Pablo Picasso...
"Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone."

Friday, October 27, 2006

Green-Tinted Sixties Friday

October 27 is the 300th day of the year (301st in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 65 days remaining... Can you believe it?? Another year has passed of just like that... just like that. It's very hard to take at times, I don't know how to deal with the reality of the passing of time and the whole age thing... it scares me alot if I begin to think about it, and then I start to obscess over it. So I have to concentrate on the trivial, and the funny stuff... Guess it's why I love comedy so much... helps me forget all that stuff. Today 1958 - Simon Le Bon, English singer (Duran Duran) was born. Oh man, Duran Duran... I was sooo in love with Roger as a teen ager, and then I switched to being in love with John Taylor (so fickle huh)... I still enjoy a Duran Duran tune now and then... I have always had extremely ecclectic tastes though, I can listen to a Burt Bacharach tune, and turn around and listen to Sepultura... go figure. Well, we have a big Friday ahead of us, so let's get to it... Have a great one... enjoy yourselves!!! -Aunt Jackie

By the way, I got this song stuck in my head the other day, by "Mr. Big"... can anyone explain to me what the lyrics mean?? It's called "Green Tinted Sixties Mind"... feel free to blab--

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Memphis Manny Pulls Houdini!

This article, i'm sharing with you originally from WREG-TV Article entitled "Memphis manatee gives Sea World the slip"

OCT. 26, 2006 12:00 PM CDT
Memphis manatee gives Sea World the slip

MEMPHIS -- The Memphis manatee was supposed to go home today, but to the surprise of Sea World, the 800 lb creature has disappeared.

For the last four days the Manatee has been in Memphis swimming around Wolf River Harbor, and officials think the it swam 700 miles up the Mississippi from its original home in Florida. This morning dozens of people made their way down to the riverfront to get a glimpse of the animal and watch Sea World perform the rescue. Our own News channel 3's Melissa Moon was one of them. She just like everyone else was surprised to discover the manatee was no where to be found.

Sea World was scheduled to meet with police and Tennessee state wildlife officials around 7:00 a.m. Last night the manatee wedged himself between two barges and was swimming in a pool of water. But this morning, he was gone.

What has Sea World concerned is that the Mississippi is only 60 degrees and that is too cold for the manatee. They've never seen a manatee this far north. They tell us that the animal is probably experiencing hypothermia and as soon as they get him out of the water, they'll be wrapping him in blankets and heating him up with warmer water.

Sea World and wildlife officials have searched the area where he was last seen as well as the Wolf River Harbor area. They are now expanding the search to McKellar Lake.

(hope they find him, keep your fingers crossed)

The Others

I owe one of our special bloggers the posting of my finished tattoo (the Celtic Tree of Life that I posted a while back that is in the middle of my back), but until I can get a good shot of that, here are my others, not as much my favs--but still my skin! :)

1-Very first one I ever got (1995), ditched work at the printing company I was with at the time and spent St. Patty's day at Beale St. drinking and getting inked. Ugly one, but special memory. [located: back right shoulder]

2-Had been out all night long (1996) with my friend Jeremy, he and I stayed up til wee hours drinking coffee and chatting, and come morning we decided to go home get ready and spend the day in Memphis, ended up at Underground Art tattoos... Viola! [located: front right shoulder]

3-This was my favorite out of the three until my latest, this was in 99' with my best bud Tamra, she and I got one on the same night by the same bloodthirsty artist at Ramesses Shadow downtown, he's no longer there but the shop still thrives--best place to go. [located: lower back]

There you have it... I'll post the filled in version of #4 soon-sorry Cappy!!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Until We Meet Again

I decided to share with you one of my old poems, written 1993. It embraces the subject of "Soulmates"... Just a note: It was published in a poetry book from poetry.com, entitled "The Falling Rain", and I just now noticed that the page number that my poem appears on is the same as my husband's year of birth... numerologically, that's kind of cool (if you get into that, which I kind of do). So now, I hope you will enjoy...

"Until We Meet Again"
by Jacqueline Cutler Wood

Our souls have lived forever
and known each other well
Though hard times have stricken
leaving us in separate Hells.
Beyond the horizon,
there in the purple distance
as the Sun lowers her modest head,
I know your thoughts are with me
as I feel your heart so near...
And with a secret inner smile,
I now endure another mile...
Until We Meet Again

Morning Memphis Manatee Update

With everyone's concern over the Manatee that decided to visit this week, I thought I'd post updates whenever I was able. The spot they had found him in is in what we call 'The Wolf River'; he's just a little ways down the street from me almost... barely just north of Downtown Memphis. He seems to be attracting his share of "gawkers". I don't blame them as I know we don't see a Manatee here often (ever)! And 720 miles up the Mississippi River to Memphis in my opinion is no small feat... this must be a tough guy. However, he deserves his protection, and so far all is ok. The Tennessee Wildlife officials are keeping him guarded, and preventing his "fans" as well as boaters from getting too close. They should have a wildlife team together soon, and I think will be planning a safe mission to move him out of the chilly waters.

The surrounding waters have been around 65-70 degrees from what I understand, which are a bit too cool for the guy, but they're trying to keep him from being upset too much. Coast Guard has kept the harbor secure... I am hoping he's in all good hands. Still, i'll keep you guys posted! Glad to know we have concerned animal lovers.
More good news on 'Manny' can be found at the Save The Manatee Club After all, he is an endangered species!!

Please read this deligntfully fun slant on our Memphis visitor, "Manny" from my friend Betaille at LaughToKeepFromCrying :)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Running (almost) on Empty

Once I got home yesterday, I had one of those Boca Burgers, which are really good. Had some of my favorite yogurt, Stonyfield Farm, and then watched a bit of t.v. while I digested. Then Mr. J and I went to the park for our evening walk/run. I'm building back up o.k. I guess, i'm putting my emphasis on the walking, but running when I feel up to it. I ran about 1 1/8 miles and i'm sure walked around 2.5 or 3. The thing about running is that I have this (i'm sure 95%) mental thing that I think I cannot do well at it, but once I do some running, I feel so great afterwards. Running gives you this great rush of adrenaline, a "runner's high" if you will... I really want to do more of it and get over the stigma that I can't. But i'm proud of any progress I make, that wasn't so bad... I gotta think more and more positive. Sometimes it's tough though.

Well, in the news... We had a visitor this week here near Memphis, now that's not abnormal I guess seeing as there are a few attractions in our city, but this one wasn't human... it's a Florida Manatee. I haven't read extensively about the whole thing just yet, but I did run across the following article Here at 'The Post-Star':

[ Memphis--James Jackson and his buddy Andre Peeples reeled in a little more than they hoped for while fishing Sunday afternoon. "I was just sitting on the barge and this half a mountain, half a car just floated right by," Jackson says.

It is no mountain, or car. "Long head, knots all over. Thought it was an alligator or crocodile," Peeples says. It's the kind of thing you just have to see to believe. And we get a good look up above from News Chopper Three. A manatee swimming in the fresh waters of the Wolf River Harbor on Mud Island. "I couldn't do anything for about 15 minutes. (Reporter) Scary? (Jackson) Scary," Jackson says.

Manatees aren't from around here. They like the warm waters of Florida and Brazil. Authorities believe at 8 to 10 feet, this big boy made his way up the Mississippi River by way of Louisiana. Even Memphis Zoo curators can't believe the sea cow is so far from home. "No, I was pretty surprised, complete shock," Andy Kouba says.

Authorities with the the U-S Coast Guard, Tennessee Department of Wildlife, and Memphis Zoo spent most of the afternoon monitoring the sea mammal, while spectators tried to get a glimpse. They even tried to feed him a couple founds of cabbage, just to see if he'd bite. They also want to keep him safe until they find out what they should do with him.

Authorities here do believe he's a strong manatee, stong enough to survive the cooler temps here. They will be back here Tuesday morning to see if he is still here, but they think he may just swim back south on his own.

They're also still waiting on direction from the feds since this is a threatened species. ]

Monday, October 23, 2006

Waxing Poetic on the Mall of Memphis

[The Ghost of Malls Past...] We talk a great deal about crime around here, but I guess for good reason. It ruins everything. It takes away our favorite places and forces us to give a long hard look at the 'times they are a changin'. I'm missing so many things lately, I hate to kick a dead horse, but as I was feeling melancholy over memories, I paused bittersweet over my old 'stomping ground', now demolished,
The Mall of Memphis.

Just like most Saturdays during the late 80s/early 90s, we put all of our energy into intricate preparation for our favorite weekend event--spending the day at the Mall. In particular, we fancied the Mall of Memphis most. I'm not sure why, it was just the one we had grown most fond of, maybe because it was the first one that we'd ventured to on our own as "grown-ups". I made myself ready, and then drove over to Shiree's house where I had no choice but to wait for her to finish her bathing rituals, and then her fine attention to detail on her eyelash curling, make-up and hair spraying. Once she was finally ready, we headed out the door and on a mission to find something to eat, and then to that magical Mall we loved so much.

Saturdays were always the best... we still had the whole weekend ahead of us, and if we met-up with some cute guys (and we always hoped we would), then our weekend was deemed a success and we'd still have time to hit up a movie or something along those lines with our new-found "Mr. Right Now". In those days, Memphis was a temporary home to many marines and navy guys, and somehow the Mall of Memphis was their gravitational weekend destination as well, much to our delight.

(Memphis, Spring 1990) Full of promise, I was catapulting head-first towards my dream, to become a great Graphic Artist. I worked hard at it (sometimes)… the problem was, I had a bad habit—the habit of having a little too much fun. There was time… I had plenty of time… I had forever if I needed it (so I thought). We met at the Mall of Memphis in the food court (Dairy Queen to be exact). He was a bright, shiny Marine with big, puppy-dog eyes and hair of the finest spun gold (oh so ‘high-n-tight’ as the hairstyle boasts). He and his buddy invited themselves to sit with us, and we eventually invited them down to check out our small-town paradise. He had a girlfriend back home, but she was history. We’d been dating only a weekend, drowning in the void of careless youth. He said he knew it was sudden but that he knew he wanted to marry me. I told him I felt the same and that I would marry him and follow him anywhere. He was going to send me to art school whenever we got to the place we were going. No thoughts entered my head of my family, and when or where would I see them again. I was in love with a capital “L”, and time was on my side. I had even broken it off with the rough and raunchy “Mr. Right Now” whom I’d previously been wasting time with.

About a month and a half later, the dream ended as I awoke to a crash-course in Reality… my first real dose of it. His girlfriend back home (who was supposed to be history) had come forward with her pregnancy. He said he had no choice… he said he would never forget me. I said “Please don’t go…” I spent a week in my mother’s lap, crying. And while I definitely had some trouble letting go, and there were those incidents in between, I held up fine and eventually I moved on (To bigger and better things of course).

We had many more Mall adventures, as well as others growing up, I even had a potential "serial killer type" approach me once when shopping with my college roomate and neice, but in all I remember that place so very fondly... Parking near my favorite exit which came in right next to the Ice-Skating rink (Chalet) hearing all the popular songs bellowing through the place, and watching the skaters dancing 'round on the ice, feeling the cool waft of air as you passed by it and 'The Gold Mine', which was a big arcade, always packed full. It's hard to remember how we could pittle away an entire day there, but we did. Darkness would fall before we knew it and it was time to begin the journey of finding where we'd parked the car. I guess we thought it would never end.

But Time is a cruel vixen and she made her mark on us, this city, everything we held close to our hearts. Our lovable favorite 'hang-out' became a dangerous location, where we heard more than our share of tales of shootings and violence. Eventually, it was nicknamed the "Mall of Murder", more and more businesses closed and others opened in attempts to stay alive, "renovate" the fine establishment that was once "hopping" with trends and friends and faces. The once-proud hub of entertainment that opened in October 1981, lost the battle and closed its doors on December 24, 2003.

Now all we have left is a few photos, some of which I managed to scrape up, and a head full of misty memories. Visions come rushing, visions of laughter, frigid breeze coming off the ice chalet, tantalizing smells from the food court as we walked, shopped and "people watched"... endlessly dreaming our day away at that Mall. Yes, times they are a'changin and people are too... never again will there be a mall, or an era for that matter, quite like The Mall of Memphis... the way it was then.

For more information, please visit 'Remembering the Mall of Memphis'
Also of interest is 'Remembering the Mall of Memphis' article on Mall-Related Crime in Memphis

The Mall of Memphis, as it was
before the demolition

The Mall in the midst of its destruction.

Is It Really Monday Again?!?

Wow. The weekend just zipped by, once again I sit with whiplash for watching Saturday and Sunday go by so fast. I tried to write a bit, but came out with only a couple of pages. Maybe it can be something, we'll see.

I've been stuck in the past again lately, more than usual. I miss everything about growing up and my family all being more 'united' I guess as they all seem to have their own thing to do, or more important things to do than being close, getting together... The holidays will be here soon though, and Thanksgiving and Christmas have always been our big group get-togethers. Those aren't even close to being the same though, not by a long shot. There isn't anything I can do about it either, so I don't know why I can't just let it all go... Guess I really deep down enjoy blubbering over 'what once was'. Maybe it's my main source of creative energy. Still, I would so much enjoy my very own time machine so I could zip here and there and visit my favorite memories at will... wouldn't you?

Anyway, Monday is upon us, and i'm looking at a full five day week, so I guess I better be in the mode. Oh I found this show that I immediately got immersed in called Heroes. It's kind of a SciFi thing, Mr. J got me started on it and i'm hooked. Great. One more thing for me to waste valuable time on... haha.
Also, I found this recipe for Spicy Pumpkin Soup. In the spirit of Halloween I might just try it... looks pretty good on these chilly mornings.

Happy Day everyone, hope this finds you all well... i'll likely be back a bit later.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Trick or Treat is Near

I love this song by Siouxshe and the Banshees, it was on a Halloween Album I got a few years back, and during fall when it's cold I always have to listen to it... Halloween is my special time of the year with my best friend, Tamra and we always used to revel in the season... we don't get to do as much these days-things always seem to change, but we have some great memories... Tamra, this one's for you, for all the Halloweens past and the ones yet to be!! :) XOXO

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Just Hanging Around...

Ssshhhhhhhhh... it's still too early and Aunt Jackie has gone back to sleep... check back soon!!!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Do Yo' Friday Thang

<-That little guy definitely has the right idea!!
Guess I'd have to say that i'm happy that it is Friday, although last friday was not only the 13th but I was happy to be traveling a bit. However, I am hoping to make the most of this weekend and accomplish a few things. I need to get some house cleaning under the belt, and I have a couple projects i'd like to play with, along with playing some video games and just enjoying the weather! It has been cooler, and I love that. I don't know how it is in your neck of the woods, but here it was like 80 degrees and then all of a sudden in the 40s (fahrenheit)... Such drastic changes, no wonder everyone stays sick with sinus problems, flus, colds... our bodies can't adjust. Had a chance to walk down the street on my lunch hour, stopped off at the park on the way back to feed a few crumbs to some squirrels, who act like they're going to climb your leg if you make a certain 'clicking' noise with your mouth, which must be how most of the people that feed them on a normal basis call them. They come straight up to you, not afraid at all. There is a little nut shoppe down the streat called "The Peanut Shop", and I have half a mind to go and buy them some special treats. I'm sure they feel as though winter is on its way and they need to begin stocking up... Animals are smarter than we are most days.

One more observation about rudeness: I notice that people will come up and simply interrupt you right in the middle of conversation more and more, without regard to anything you were saying. That goes right under my subject from the other day wherein nobody has any regard for others but themselves. Could they not wait for a moment to see if you are finished? Or say "pardon me, i'm sorry to interrupt you"? Just jump right in and take over the space and the conversation... What's with everyone! I don't mean to get back on that subject, I just wish people would think for a moment instead of acting... that's all. I can hope.

Well everyone, have a great Friday, or rest of the weekend, depending on when/if you read this... be safe and happy.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The End Is Near

End of the week anyway...
It's o.k. now folks, i've had to bring myself back down to earth, as many of you reminded me again, it's what you make it. Oftentimes our own attitudes don't help us when we're feeling low or negative. It's hard but one day at the time I suppose. That day happens to be Thursday at the moment, and i've been knee-deep in technical issues today, and it's been raining and I do love a good rain. I'd much rather be watching it from my home window drinking hot cocoa and watching a good movie in peace and quiet though. That's the greatest!

It's off to band practice tonight, and then who knows what... Hope you're all well and we'll pow-wow more soon!
Aunt Jackie

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hysterical Blindness

Feeling invisible lately...The week is breezing past somewhat, and as i've watched people and the world around me, i've decided that no other human being gives a flying crap about anyone but themselves. They're all on a one-track crash course headed straight for their own private brick walls. The rudeness, apathy and sadistic nature of it all. What make-believe race are they all trying to win? The facts are that the world is spinning out of control on its axis and they're all trying to break the speed of light to get to the end? What's the prize? Time passes fast enough people, just stop and look at the world around you, and maybe find it in your busy schedules to laugh a little, make someone smile, return a "hello", acknowledge someone else's existence besides yourselves... It's all a part of the big picture you know. What ever happened to civility, kindness and human decency? It's getting thinner by the second.

Seems like everywhere I turn, there's some rotten attitude or some negative energy combating me. I try hard to stay positive myself-I really do. But sometimes I just feel like giving the whole world a great big foot in the **#!@$$!**

Filled with the Spirit

I'm sorry, I just had to bring this guy back... it's just too good for a laugh...

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Swinging from the past

I heard that today, October 17, our U.S. Population hit 300 Million... ever growing, they just keep a'coming whether by birth or boat or plane. The whole world gets too crowded sometimes. I've been out of ideas for the past couple days, wondering what to blog I guess, recuperating from the trip, for some reason it just took it out of me and I was without energy or motivation upon return. So, as I was on my way home from work, thinking about what I could post, I happened to see an old tire in a strange place and it reminded me of old-fashioned "Tire Swings". These really were before my time I guess, but my Dad had one in the back by the pond at one time, and I just remember it being so fun. It is the simplest thing really, no gadget, nothing extraordinary... just a big tractor tire roped up in a tree. We loved it, various ones of us have played on a tire swing throughout our lives, and it just struck me funny I guess, seeing an old tire like that... drudging up yet more youthful memories that are gone with the breeze... How did time speed by so fast, and we didn't even stop and look up to realize it... then it's too late, the last 10, 20+ years gone and you try relentlessly to scrape up something to show for it... Life is good, I am not saying it isn't--but it's a "different" good... nothing is ever as ecstatic for me as those magic feelings growing up, and I guess nothing will ever replace them.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Be It Ever So Humble...

Well, you know the end of that sentence don't ya? I guess it's true too. Always glad to get home, and a trip always tires me out. I did all the driving anyway, that's usually the case, i'm the driver of the family, and I am the daughter of a truck driver, so I am used to it and it's in my blood. Just a hair dissappointed that I didn't get to do all I wanted to do, but the weekend was nice just the same. Too crowded downtown when I attempted to visit the spa, so I just drove back to the lake and Mr. J (the tinman) and I proceeded to enjoy our Saturday. When I arrived back, he was playing his acoustic guitar, and then we took off to Hot Springs Mountain Tower. Mr. J has a fear of heights so he didn't go up with me, but elected to remain in the car listening to his book on CD, Angels & Demons, which turned out to be pretty riveting. So off I go, not completely in love with heights myself, I purchase a token and take the elevator straight to the top with my digital camera in hand. The view was beautiful, although better in person, I did my best to bring you a few good shots. Once I came down, Mr. J was ready to go and eat, but I tormented him with a few more photos I wanted to capture of the foilage and mountainous surroundings before the daylight escaped me. Enjoy these, sorry the quality isn't that great, but this is all I have at the moment.

First thing in the morning, the view right off our deck at the lake, where the water was still hazy with morning mist
Scenes from Hot Springs Mountain Tower (way up in the mountain)
Tried to capture some fall colors
As you can see, people do not mind the "no grafitti" requests,
and continue to let everyone know that they were indeed "there"Ironic I knowFinally, we head down the road to Chuck's Southern Barbecue, which was just a small shack on the side of the road there near our weekend "villa". You know how it goes with 'holes in the wall', they're the best places to eat. Now, let me tell you something about Arkansas. The people are all hospitable, as is famous for the 'old south', and they're not afraid to fly their rebel flags. Mississippi has experienced some trouble and had the flag stifled somewhat due to racism, but history is just that... "History", and we should be allowed to show it off proudly for the shear fact that we survived it so that we may all be here together right now, co-existing as never before... but there are many that still want to make cases of flags... merely a symbol. Chuck, however, still sports his southern pride, and his barbecue proudly.

Chuck tells it like it isOnce we ate, it was back to the lake to ready our fishing poles. We were armed and dangerous with our frankfurters (hot dogs) and our rod & reel. It was dark now, so we were apt to try this night fishing approach. Went out our back door, and down the steps right to the edge of the water. Didn't catch a fish, but I made great friends with one anonymous, cunning little finned hot-dog lover. I would bait my hook, patiently waiting for a bite, and he never failed. Stole the meat off the hook every single time. I think I was made fool of-but I didn't mind, he needed the food more than I needed to catch the fish. Wrapped up the evening with one last dunk in the Jacuzzi tub, where Mr. J, who knows no excess poured an entire bottle of foam bath and a whole box of bath salts. The scene that followed I can only describe is just short of what happened on "I Love Lucy" when the washing machine had too much detergent. Hilarious! Leave it to Mr. J, as we settled in for a romantic soak, the bubbles were engulfing us like "The Blob", and as I tried to kiss his bubble-covered face, I couldn't help but laugh at him looking like frosty the snowman. We were worried that the bubbles might never die. Well then we cut it short because he couldn't sit in the heated water long enough, and retired to a nice movie. Went to bed, woke up this morning, packed our things and began the journey home. All was safe, all went well and I'd like to go back again sometime soon, after all I have to settle the score with that fish. He owes me a package of frankfurters! ha-ha...

Hope all is well with you guys.
Ahhh, Home Sweet Home... Aunt Jackie
Oh before I forget, the wall outside Chuck's Barbecue place sported this old sign...
I had to post it-This is for Jax and Four Dinners->

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Hello, Hello, Hello... Is There Anybody In There?

Hi, it's a quick update this morning... There is no internet available here, but Mr. J found a stray network, so here I am! At this moment, i'm sitting in the little livingroom of the place i'm staying at. When I woke up this morning, I took the digital cam out on the deck, took a few photos of Lake Hamilton in the a.m. The sunrise was still in effect, sort of, and since the temperature is a bit on the chilly side, there was a fog atop the lake water... splendid! It's so nice up here. Then I took an overly-long soak in the jacuzzi tub (and got prune hands you cheeky monkeys!!) ha-ha

Just an informational note, there are plenty of liquor stores and bars around here, so Mr. J was able to have a bit of crown royal last night and a few Sam Adams, so he was his giggly self, and gave a "Cheers" to you other guys that love their brew. The only thing I am regretting is that I didn't pick up some coffee as I would have loved to sip some hot, black coffee on the deck this chilly morning and I thought of my Mother (Ms. Rie), who would be sitting there drinking it with me if I had brought her up too... She so loves the outdoors and camping type things.

Well, what to do with the remainder of my day? I contemplate doing one of the therapeutic baths in the Natural Hot Spring spa that they offer here, along with a massage... what the heck-Earthly life is but a moment (and we don't want to leave it dirty and stressed) :)

Happy Day everyone... i'll be back soon with more...

Friday, October 13, 2006

I Only Dated Him for his Mask

Happy Friday the 13th everybody!! You can click on the Friday the 13th logo there to the left, to see how it works-why some actually think of it as "unlucky". As for me, I will continue last-minute packing and get ready to head for the woods (and lake), and try my best to forget this city for a couple of days... had a dream just before waking that I was riding a motorcycle with Mr. J (I was driving of course), and we were being chased by some gang members in a bad section of Memphis... glad to wake up-really! Funny thing though, the 'gang leader' was eating a big cherry lollipop! (anyone with dream insights feel free to try that one).

Well in the Spirit of all things unholy and scary, and because it is such a beautiful cold morning (our very first frost I think), I will share with you a pic of Mr. J when he was with his former band "Legion of Divine Punishment", he is pictured here with his stage get-up, which usually consisted of a Hockey Mask and Jersey, playing lead guitar. I only went out with him because I thought he was Jason in the flesh!! Just kidding... I married him didn't I?? ha-ha Well, everyone have a safe and happy 13th...

Happiest of Birthdays goes out to JAXXXXXX! (who I'm told turns 17 on this lucky day! Hope it's o.k. to say) Rock On Jax!
It was a lucky day for the Four Dinners fam anyway! Hey wait, I thought it was ME who just turned 17... what th' hell happened? Where does the time go? The best advice Aunt Jackie can give, is to cherish every moment make the most of it and always appreciate your family, they're the only people you truly know for sure love ya, and love yourself too-in the end, you're all you got!! I'll be back soon with pictures of gorgeous Hot Springs Arkansas in tow... until then, grin and bear it.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Heading into the Forest on a Lucky Day!

Oooh it was a nice chilly morning, and I could use more of that. I guess Mr. J and I will be departing for our trip on Friday the 13th, which some folks say is not a good day, or 'unlucky' if you will, but I think that it's all in how you look at it... I happen to think Friday the 13th is cool. I am a strange moon child though... Maybe if I thought about it, I would think how we are going up into the Hills of Arkansas on such a supposedly unlucky day (which has been named for a few famous horror flicks I must say), and that Arkansas in some of its remote places can remind you of the 1972 movie, Deliverance at times... hmmm well, i'll be ready for any creepies that come my way then, as they don't want to tangle with Aunt Jackie!! Aside from that, I find the season magical, and we're starting to get that "feeling in the air", we're on our way... In that spirit, I thought I would share a cute photo I found of probably the coolest looking Jack-O-Lantern or carved pumpkin I've seen yet... This one should've won an award if it did not... Happy Thursday folks.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Wednesday, here in the River Bluff, and all is well although there are no present rainbows in sight. I'm planning (something I rarely do) the details of my little weekend trip off to Lake Hamilton in Hot Springs, Arkansas. To get out by the beautiful lake and get a bit closer to nature. I tell you, it's because I have been listening to all you guys from Nottingham! Because you've all talked about your getaways and holidays so much, I just had to go somewhere-even if it was just up to the lake/mountain for a little weekend refresher.

I guess I will take my notebook and try to relax and write a bit, I plan on taking in one of Hot Springs' wonderful mineral bath/spa treatments (yes, real hot spring water!) and a fabulous 1-hr massage (something I have never done for myself), while possibly sketching a bit and seeing some of the shops they have to offer in Downtown Hot Springs... maybe we'll even go and see the Hot Springs Mountain Tower. I don't have a very good digital camera, but I will take the one I have and i'll do my best to capture a few scenic shots. Of course i'll try to share those with you here-if any of them are worth sharing... I think i'll ask Santa Claus (rofl) for a good camera for X-mas this year... I've wondered to myself lately, why have I neglected my Art for so long anyway? What is stopping me from my photography and painting now?? I know I could get back on track if I really try. I so lack motivation... eeek!

Anywho...I tried to look up a few snapshots of what sights I may see around the area... It's looking just a little like this->

Looks pretty good to me... The temperature up there should be nice. The forecast on Weather Underground is saying highs in the mid-70s and lows in the 40s (fahrenheit)... and just now, the very moment I write this, it says 63 °F / 17 °C and "clear". Those are the makings of a very nice weekend I think, much better than last.

So those are my plans for this wonderful upcoming weekend. How about you? Anything interesting in the worlds of my beloved readers? Feel free to jabber. Oh and my friends in Nottingham, I found this curious link to a pub that they have in Maryland (USA) of all places called "Nottingham's". I guess places everywhere admire the whole Robin Hood legends and lore. Why, even here in Memphis there is a neighborhood over by a print shop I used to work for which calls itself "Sherwood Forest", sporting street names like "Maid Marrian", "Friar Tuck", and "Robin Hood Ln"... I don't know why I never thought to mention that before. Guess that will have to do until I can get over my airplane fears, as well as afford to visit the real deal someday. :)

Have a great day, wherever you are and watch out for falling stars!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Tuesday's Child

I was born on a Monday, shortly after 9:00 a.m., which puzzles me-I wonder why I am not a morning person? I'll blame it on Mom. She was always a big morning person, and probably just ordered me to arrive early. At any rate, it is Tuesday, which is named for "Tyr" (Old Norse: Týr), the god of single combat and heroic glory in Norse mythology, sometimes this naming varies, but Wiki usually has the best descriptions. So Tuesday is considered either the second or the third day of the week, between Monday and Wednesday. The word "Tuesday" comes from Middle English Twisday, rom Old English Tiwes dæg, a rendering of Latin Martis dies. The English and Scandinavian names are derived from the Nordic god Tyr (in Old English, Tiw, Tew or Tiu. In Swedish, Tisdag, Danish: Tirsdag, Finnish: Tiistai and in Norwegian: Tirsdag, Icelandic: Þriðjudagur.) Tyr was the Norse equivalent of the Roman war god Mars, hence Martis dies ("Mars's day") as taken from Wikipedia. Interesting little facts I like to read and learn a little something every day (even if it is trivial sometimes). It is also said that "Tuesday's Child is Full of Grace."

I find it so funny that most often something that is of great importance will escape me, and I can't recall to save my life, and if you quiz me on something very Trivial, I'll come through for you nearly every time! The mind is a funny thing.

So far, this week is going relatively well, had band practice last night, wrote another song (in this particular grouping, we write very well together, which excites my drummer immensely). I really like the song that we came up with... it seems as though every new song is just a little bit "looser" and better than the last. That's a good thing. We still have not settled on our band name though, which is beginning to frustrate us all. Seems to come so easy for some people, but we're hoping to narrow that down soon. Hoping to record and master a few tracks soon as well, so that should be fun.

Other than that, I don't really have much to report. I'm still feeling tired from the weekend, & i'm feeling lazy. I have the urge to sit and do absolutely nothing but play some video games or watch old movies (preferably on a rainy or snowy day-but snow, of course is highly unlikely). Guess I will tough it until near the weekend, when I am planning this Friday off and hoping to go out of town as well to Hot Springs, Arkansas to chill a bit and maybe regroup my spirit some... I really need that.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Try This Out

My sister, Nana sent me this, it's kind of fun... tells you alot of different statistics about your birthday along with a good bit of astrological data. Give it a try... you know you want to (psst all the cool kids are doin' it!)


Signs of the Times

Great one for our Memphis Drivers.
Bullet holes are never a good sign...

I seem to remember something about...

I think someone could use a swift...

That "Hooked on Phonics" program really
seems to be doing the trick!!

Here's hoping this week is definitely better than last... Be safe out there.