Friday, April 30, 2010

It Seems To Me...Elisabeth!

Hello Birthday girl...yes the sweet young lady with the big balloon! It seems to me, it's your turn to be Queen for a Day! You get treated to more than a balloon...a posting devoted completely about YOU! Are you Reaaaaaaadddddddyyyyyyyy???
You were another lucky cousin attending weddings at an early age! It seems to me someone parked you with the elderly Aunts. It seems to me I'm not far from being called an 'elderly aunt'! OH NO!!!

I know you were wishing you were hanging out with the cooler set...hey I just happen to have some pictures where you were the Belle of the Ball...the only girl in the group! Here...see...oh well, there was one other girl in the group, but, It seems to me..she wasn't willing to get down on the floor and play! 

Point of fact, it seems to me that for a while in this family you were the 'Only Girl In Town' for your male cousins. 
I am looking at all the laps and the only pink bundle is you and no pink outfits under the age of twenty are standing! How adorable, I was so envious your Mom had a baby girl and could pick out clothes with frills! You two bonded from the start, it was so much fun to watch the love reflected between you in each others eyes, or so it seems to me!
But weddings weren't the only game in town! Do you remember one of the day trips to end all day trips? The big day trip to Washington, DC? Even then your Dad was a great guide for our nation's capitol! Did you think then you would be returning for a wedding for your cousin Scott??? I do remember watching you all run up and down the bank of the Potomac River. We did have some fun times!
It seems to me...
We managed to travel to you a time or two...front and center Elisabeth! Oh, you already are! Thank you missy!
I love that the captioning Elise had under this picture she sent to me reads, 'Family Shot at Bar in NO' ! I do believe this is how the Irish do funerals...and we know this is how it is done in New Orleans! Is that how It seems to You?

We did all travel to Florida for your Grandparents Fiftieth Anniversary...that was fun...It seems...
And back to the most recent way we seem to visit...Weddings...and


Rehearsal Dinners...and of course, more...

Weddings! Elisabeth, It seems to me, that Uncle Jack....??? Oh wait different story, different day...LOL!!!
I've watched you grow...and loved every minute of it!
Whenever you spend your time with the family, you make us all happy. You have a very thoughtful way of making each one of us feel special and appreciated. Or so It seems to me!

So from the entire family...Happy Birthday...have a great Day! You are the sunshine in our day...We all love you a Bushel and A 'Peck' And A Hug Around The Neck!
Or so, it seems to me...
Loves, Loves, Loves
Aunt Susie
xoxox

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Say Soccer Ball...Trey!

Last Sunday we had a real treat! We headed out towards the land of the Blue Universities...UNC and Dooke and watched Trey play soccer. I spotted my son and grandson right away! Steve, Jr is not in the above photo he was next to me. Trey is out on the field of course! I have been told the coach's nickname for him is Iron Man. Always eager to stay and play in the game!
I love watching this age group play soccer. They are so eager and quick on the field! Trey has really advanced from his first season with soccer. He has a big kick...almost scored a goal with one big kick...just went outside the goal, shucks!


Water breaks are always a good time! My opportunity for close up pictures and some hugs from my favorite soccer star! Pop loves to get in on the action too! 
A quick smile, the whistle blows and Trey is off, smack in the middle of the action!
Protecting the goal...and of course...


Just waiting for his chance to get his defensive shot to send it back to his goal! Yay, Trey! 


We topped off the evening at one of our favorite eating establishments near the Steve, Jr household. It has a nice outside seating area and we were able to visit and enjoy the end to a wonderful afternoon!
And I just happened to bring my grandsons' carseats so Peter and Trey could ride in Sush's new hot rod! How was it guys? We even pulled down my 'monkey mirror' so I could see my two monkeys...well Aunt E was in the back seat too, so make it three monkeys in the back seat!
Thanks for a wonderful Sunday, kiddos and kidlets...see you soon! 
And Trey, I love to watch you play soccer! You are a very caring and hardworking athlete! Yay, Trey!!! Peter, won't be long and you'll be running and playing on the soccer field!


Loves, Loves, Loves,
Sush The Great!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

They Say It's Your Birthday...!!!


Happy Birthday Emily and Will! How fast those fourteen years went! How precious you are to all of the family...then and now!


You like to dance....


and have attended weddings....


and more weddings...

Don't worry...almost all of the cousins in this family are married...

Now I have a new proposition for you. I won't be having any weddings this summer. I know you like the beach. Your family stopped off at Aunt Patsy's house on the way to Dune Allen...
Perhaps in the place of a wedding...I know you are crushed at the thought of not having another of our 'family' weddings...how about joining us at the beach?
Won't be Dune Allen... we will be at Holden Beach...! Would you come out of your sand pit and play in 'my' sand?

Should I offer to bury you in the sand? Dan did it with a friend one year! I'm sure we can enlist his help...
And we even bury family members upon request...I think it is a thing with Dan!

Peter says come on and join us on the Atlantic Coast this year...

We have crabs your Dad can catch...

A pretty bridge over the coastal canal...

Trey will join you in the tidal pools-
Lily will let you use her sand pail and shovel...well maybe not? Oh, sure you will, Lil!

The beaches in North Carolina are so pretty!

We love to build sand castles...and walk on the beach at night!
Would it help if I tell you we have a house with a pool this year? I'm sure they have another house close to ours...and you can swim in the pool all day all night, anytime...

Will you come? Will you ask your parents? I know it's not a birthday present but it would sure make a week in July fun!


Hey...you're out of the pit...so does that mean you'll come?
Well, whatever you do I hope today is a wonderful birthday and know that I love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck!
xoxox
Your ever loving beach loving
Aunt Susie(and company) All my gang will be there and your young, cousinettes!


PS: This invite is open to the entire family. I can give you the name of the rental agencies we use...xoxoxo! 

Friday, April 23, 2010

The Marshmallow Test/Failed

...a woman reproduces Walter Mischel's famous experiment looking at a preschooler's ability to delay gratification in order to receive a larger reward. In Mischel's experiment, he found that children who could delay gratification and wait for the second marshmallow were considered "more dependable" later as adolescents and generally scored higher on the SATs. Mischel and colleagues also found a relationship between seconds of delay of gratification and scores of ability to deal with stress and frustration.


Well I would have flunked the marshmallow test. I don't know if any of you saw it on the news the other night but the explanation is self explanatory. You can watch a video of the kids on You Tube if you want to see it in detail. 


I found out the car was ready Thursday and I just couldn't 'delay gratification'! I reached for my 'marshmallow', and Elise and I drove out to the dealership and picked up the CR-V! And oh baby what a sweet marshmallow!!!


The dealership is close to Steve and Terri's house so, Elise drove it to their neighborhood. The traffic before you get to their neighborhood was six o'clock I-40 busy. I am not a bold young woman these days and Elise was all over getting a chance to drive! Once we got to the neighborhood we switched so I could drive up the street. And I honked and waved out my moon roof at everyone in their cul-de-sac! Trey got a big grin and Peter didn't know who it was at first. 


Peter is a car connoisseur and once he realized it was Elise and I he was very willing to explore 'Sush's new hot rod'! He calls all of our cars 'hot rods'. I think he got that from his Pop! Peter had great fun climbing up his Mom and looking out the moon roof. Trey peeked in but was very busy shooting basketballs. As it was dinnertime we spent a few minutes longer showing off the wheels and then went on our merry marshmallow way.


I actually gathered my courage and drove home from Steve and Terri's house. On I-40 and then 540, and YES, I expect a lot of 'wow, what courage' coming my way! Once, I got over my initial trepidation, I had sooooo much fun! Of course I do believe every car we passed or that passed us was ooohhhing and aaahhhing at my buggy!


I took a spin down Tim and Lisa's street but it was obvious they were entertaining. Another day another time we will be sharing the marshmallow with Lily and her parents.


We drove home and Pop hopped in the driver's seat and took us on another spin around town. We picked up dinner, ate a quick repast and then Elise wanted another turn at the wheel. Fine with me as I don't like to drive at night due to poor night vision. And off we went! Me and my gal...wind blowing in our hair, actually able to see the moon from the moon roof view!!! 


Pop opted out of the outing, but has offered to take the car to work tomorrow if I feel like driving it is too challenging. NOT!


Anyway, we have the new wheels. We love the new wheels! Keep an eye out,for a sassy brown marshmallow of a CR-V.  I just might be in your neighborhood, waving to you from the moon roof! Beep Beep!


If we stop long enough today for pictures...they will be added later!


Gotta get some shut eye so I can be ready for Sush's new hot rod!


Hugs...


BTW...I love marshmallows, so why wait????





Wednesday, April 21, 2010

THE REALLY BIG THING!

EEEEEEKKKKKKK We Did It! We finally, finally, finaaalllyyyy bought a new car! We usually rush out and buy a new car every ten years or so. It has now been twelve years since we last purchased a new car. I guess we were due! Takes a while to save up.  Oh! It is so pretty and neat and just...WOW


Elise's 'Blue Bug' is close to checking out and she needs a vehicle to use until she has worked a tad and is able to purchase one of her own.  So, really we had no other choice than to go ahead and take the plunge. We are trading the bug in. Elise inherits temporarily my 'Mom Car', the wagon. Can you guess how thrilled she is to drive the 'Mom Car'? 
Well...maybe her reaction isn't quite like that...


Pop is buying Steve Jr's 2009 Ford Fusion when he gets his 2010 Fusion later this month or the beginning of May. 


What you may ask will Sush be driving??? Why a brand new...bring her on down folks, 
Honda CR-V EX! 


We will be picking it up on Friday, they are putting some spit and polish on our rubber baby bumper buggy, along with the towing hitch Steve negotiated! Now we don't have a boat or a trailer but one never knows when we just might be in the need for a towing hitch! I was pretty amazed to see Mr Wonderful in full negotiating mode, the man was fantastic


The color is called Urban Titanium Metallic...a fancy way of saying a light metallic brown. The interior is tan and it has a MOON ROOF!!! I can open it up and feel the breeze blowing my baby fine hair all over the place! How cool is that?


Sadly, it's time to say good bye to the Blue Bug! You served us well...


Peter...Sush has a new hot rod! Wanna go for a ride??? How about it Trey, Lily?There is plenty of room for all my beautiful grandchildren and their car seats! Peter, I think you can kick your feet to the 'Saints Are Coming' and not get your feet stuck! Hop in my car???


Did I put enough words in itallics for you to tell how happy and excited I am???


PS: Steve Sr, You Da Bomb!

Monday, April 19, 2010

The House That Built Me...




I heard Miranda Lambert sing a new song of hers last night on the CMA's. Yes, I do listen to country music...and so??? I like a wide variety of music, but I digress. The song she sang has parts that spoke to me.


    "I know they say you can't go back home again...


    Ma'am I know you don't know me from Adam
    But these handprints on the front steps are mine...


    Plans were drawn and concrete poured
    And nail by nail and board by board
    Daddy gave life to Mama's dream...


    You leave home, You move on
       And you do the best you can....


    ... If I could walk around, I swear I'll leave
      Won't take nothing but a memory


    FROM THIS HOUSE THAT BUILT ME


I think I was trying to say something like that in my previous post. Our house was where our pieces seemed to always fit. I could go out in the world and be a different person to different people, but when I came home I could find me. All the pieces of me. I could be the sister, the daughter, the girl trying to find herself. And it was okay.


I was talking with Elise about 5910 and she said it was a place that was magical to her too. That there was just something about that house that was magical. I like to believe it was the love that was in the home that helped everyone feel accepted and safe.


I haven't forgotten that there were some hum-dingers of squabbles and actual times where blood was drawn. Times when teenagers were at odds in major ways with their parents. But, I do believe that bottom line, we all knew we were loved and safe within the walls of 5910. I guess I will always look at that house as my safe zone...it welcomed me home no matter the age, no matter who I returned home with. My husband and children and, if I had grandchildren when it was still a part of our family, I like to feel they would have felt happy and secure there too!


It's not that I want to go home again. Heaven knows I have led a beautifully charmed life here. Nail by nail and board by board Steve has built my dream. I know that we are doing what Mom wanted for us as Aimee so eloquently phrased it in her comments in the previous posting. I am happy, content and very thankful for all I have since I left 5910. But I will always love growing up there and miss the parents who raised and loved us. I don't wish for time to turn back...I am enjoying my journey.


Yet for all that it was and all that I still feel about it...
I loved... and will take away the memories of, The House That Built Me...


And I love all those that lived there and returned there with me.
Hugs,
Susie

Friday, April 16, 2010

5910


"Where we love is home, home that our feet may leave~but not our hearts."
~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.


This is a warning for all who would not, do not, want to see the old homestead in its renovated form. It is just the downstairs, but it is still 'our' house redone. Some of the changes are nice, but I will never understand why they closed off the living room from the family room. Really cut the flow and the missing built in book shelves are a HUGE LOSS, aesthetically speaking. The photos don't show this, I heard about that from Patsy who did tour the house during the post Katrina remodel.


I am hoping some of you have pictures of the exterior of our house pre Katrina that are attractive that I can add to this posting for a before and after. I seem to have misplaced mine. Ixnay on the lost photograph, I found one I had in that 'special' place. Bwahaha, you know the one we all have. I'll just put the picture in this 'special' spot so I'll know where it is. Never to be seen again....almost!



I know I am not the Lone Ranger missing the family homestead the way it was. It is really hard to go back to New Orleans and not have a home waiting for me...a bedroom that was once mine. All the old familiar and loved rooms and belongings that just say, "Yes, you are home and loved!" 
I know I am supposed to take comfort as Patsy suggests in the fact that the house is perhaps being loved and nurturing another family like it did ours. But when we visited the homestead and it was inhabited by the "Renters", that were definitely not up to snuff in my humble and admittedly politically incorrect opinion it just made me feel worse.


Some of what they did in the remodel I just don't like. I do like how they opened up the kitchen but it is very strange to see the appliances updated and the missing stool bar. I do admit we would have enjoyed the kitchen renovation if we were still living there!


 I have no photographs of the upstairs remodel, which I guess is for the best. I don't know how I would have handled that as just seeing the downstairs renovation did me in. I have nightmares sometimes that I go home and get lost in our new/old house trying to find all of you and Mom and Dad. Or, I confront the people who are living there in a really angry and inappropriate way, yes, Lee a Schweaggamonster way...and call them on all they have done and how they have ruined our house!


So, if you don't want to see what they have done...don't go any further. If you do, I have also included some pictures of when we were in some of the rooms for comparison. Love you all, and I miss our old 5910 and all the days spent with each and every one of my siblings and parents in our most wonderful home!


5910 pre Katrina...






5910 Post Katrina
First, for anyone reading this who has not seen the house, a quick explanation of the layout of 5910 when my siblings and I lived there.


 When you entered the house from the front door you walked directly into the foyer. To the right was the telephone room. If you go to the posting  And So She Scanned   you will see a picture of my Mom with her arms widespread. She is seated in the 'telephone room'. We called it that back when phones were stationary and in just a few special locations in a house. The closet door behind Mom is a closet she used to keep extra canned food and bottled water during the Cuban Missile Crisis. In the photo below you can see the foyer with a sidelight to the front door and behind the kids, the 'telephone room'. Years later, on the wall where you see a lamp in the telephone room, my parents added the elevator. If you continued  through the 'telephone room' to another door it brought you to the kitchen.


Trivia: we sometimes called the 'telephone room' the library. Not that books were kept there, Mom always suggested it as a 'quiet' spot to read. Nope.


Steve, jr, Timmy, Eric in foyer dressed for Aimee and Wayne's wedding
When you turned to the left  from the front door you went to the living room. 
Bill and Grams in living room...foyer and front door can be seen behind Grams
Steps leading to second story from foyer.
The stairs going to the second floor started in the foyer. 


If you went straight back in the living room you went through a double doorway that led onto the porch...or family room, more on that later. If you continued through the living room and exited right, you entered the dining room that then led to the kitchen. The kitchen also feeds to the telephone room if you go to the right when entering the kitchen from the dining room. If you continued  through the kitchen you would have a door leading to the outside patio to the left and a powder room or what people now called a half bath to the right. Continue a few steps more and you were in the laundry/storage room, a larger than you would think laundry room. More on the laundry room and the famous laundry chute later!
Photo of house during post Katrina remodel. The first bump out on the right side of the house is the elevator shaft. The next bump out shows the laundry room window (with the half shutter) and the small narrow window at bottom is half bath window. Window up top is to one of the bathrooms upstairs.That area was originally a sun porch. WE WERE NEVER ALLOWED ON THE SUN PORCH.
PS I have included the last names of some non-family members for clarity and posterity for the younger generations who might wonder what uncle or aunt I am referring to...fyi next generations we often called special family members aunt or uncle so and so...thus the last names that aren't familial. If anyone is not comfortable with this let me know and I will delete the last names of non-family members. No probs!
Previously was a carport...sight of LPSSAB family sunfish construction.
Patsy is styling in front of carport-not garage.


Tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree!
Billy...backyard oak tree...
Kitchen. Just no room for Uncle Caulk to stand next to the fridge to tell me he is plugged into the outlet behind the fridge 'cause he has to charge his battery. To left, entry to laundry room. To far right of counter, entrance to 'telephone room or library' and access to elevator.
Kinda liking this...I think Ya Ya would have loved cooking in this kitchen!
Lee, Ya Ya, Elise, Elisabeth
Uncle Perry, Aunt Sarah, Monica Doerr, Daddy, Gramma Bet, Mrs. Knight
Living Room. We used to play Train Station, pressing the 'keys' on the dentil molding that was under the mantle shelf. Lee was the conductor and when we got the go ahead we ran the complete circle or 'track' around the downstairs. Funny what entertains kids!
Church family...bc..before Billy C





Home after freshman year at LSU and loving being with the family. Base of Pyramid, Patsy, Susie, Mom (Peckie) top of Pyramid Billy, Aimee...ever watchful Filston May, 1970


Sally & Fred wedding day. l-r; Jack, Lee, Bill jr, Daddy(Bill Sr, Sally, Aimee, Steve, Susie~pregnant, Patsy~pregnant, Allan, seated- Grams(Florelle), Mom (Peckie) Fred was waiting on the riverboat



Tulane Happens! l-r Steve, Jr, Tim, Jen, Daddy (Bill, Sr), Mom (Peckie), Elise
Ya Ya, aka Marion, Elise, Mary Cynthia
Why would you close off this lovely flow? Bad Move...but happy memories!





Rear of 5910 Post Katrina remodel. Exterior porch new to house. Window on right was orientation of previous exterior door before they extended kitchen. Back wall didn't have french doors, instead it had large windows with sidelights.
This would now be called the Family Room. When we lived here it was originally a screened in porch with concrete floor. Many remodels later it was the den or still referred to as "The Porch".


Uncle Clayton Charbonnet, Daddy(Bill Sr) Allan, Michael






Mom (Gramma...Peckie), Jen, Elise
Ya Ya (Marion), Susie, Billy, Aimee, Patsy~May, 1970 Ya Ya and Me sharing a BD cake


Aimee and Steve, Sr Oh the man has moves!




Dining Room...fairly the same. Doorway to living room was not arched when we lived here.


When we were young and still a growing family we rarely ate in the dining room. We had a glass top table on the porch, where we all ate. Daddy could check our feet to make sure we didn't come to the table with bare feet. Mom, not so strict on the shoes.


Trivia: I routinely flooded the 'Porch' when I was dating my husband. Would start the bath, he would invariably call on the telephone or sometimes it would be my best friend, Darnay. I would get so wrapped up in the conversation I would forgot about the water running in the bathtub. UNTIL, I heard, "OH S***! SUSIEEEEEE!!!! Bath water poured out of the ceiling vents into the 'Porch'! I know I remember doing it three times. Mea Maxima Culpa. Cell phones and mobile phones saved my adult hide, I do believe!


Another shot of my birthday...Ya Ya's cake was at the other end! We had two cakes so Ya Ya could have a cake to bring home for her family. I think we celebrated after I finished my spring semester 1970, which would have been closer to Ya Ya's birthday. l-r Patsy, Susie, Aimee, Bill, jr


Aunt Margaret Gaudry, Katie, Michael, Aunt Adelaide Charbonnet
Grams, Uncle Fred, Ya Ya, Daddy, Mom, Bill Jr, Aimee
I miss YOU
Memories...pressed between the pages of my blog...
Loves, Loves, Loves...Sush