Saturday, March 29, 2014

A Tornado-free Week And Nine Other Thankfuls

Last week's Ten Things of Thankful was filled with wonderfulness, because it was, well, a wonderful week; I got to spend it in Nashville with my 15 year old daughter, visiting my person, Terri, and her kids. It was hard to head back home after that. Literally so, in fact, as we drove across Kentucky on I-24, only to find ourselves stopped in an inexplicable traffic jam at 3:00 on a Sunday afternoon. It took us about 40 minutes to go roughly three miles, where the source of the traffic jam was discovered: the bridge over the Tennessee River had one lane closed for maintenance work. . . .

After that delay, we continued across Kentucky to Paducah, headed west towards Missouri, crossed the Ohio River on one of the scariest, awfullest bridges EVER, prepared to turn the corner and cross the Mississippi River on the second-to-most scariest, awfullest bridges EVER and were met with a big sign saying "Bridge Closed." 

Recalculating route.

We had to turn and go north, into Illinois and through the town of Cairo (pronounced CARE-o), which, I can assure you, is nothing like the one in Egypt. We went miles out of our way, but the upside was that we crossed the Mississippi on one of those fancy interstate bridges that make it almost seem as though you aren't actually crossing a deadly waterway. 

We did finally make it home, then it was off and running for a full week of work and activities. And now it's the weekend and time for the thankfuls.

1. I got to eat at one of my favorite places while I was in Nashville not once, but twice. And which is why we got such a late start leaving town on Sunday, but it was TOTALLY WORTH IT. I heart San Antonio Taco Company.

2. And Terri and I got to have ice cream at another favorite place, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams, where I had three teeny tiny scoops: goat cheese with red cherries, Savannah buttermint, and wildberry lavender, and got to spend time laughing and talking with my Kayla.

Normal sized spoon. Teeny tiny scoops.

3. I thought I had a work day on Monday afternoon after preschool, which is a time for changing bulletin boards and exchanging the toys in the centers for different ones, etc., (in other words, manual labor, preschool-style) and instead found out I had my days mixed up and work day wasn't until NEXT Monday. And not only was it NOT work day, it was birthday lunch day! Win-win!

4. One of my pre-k boys went to Disney World (REALLY went, not like the little guy who told me he was going there, but he hadn't told his mom yet). When this boy announced to me he would be going there over Spring Break , I told him to make sure to ride Peter Pan for me, because it was my favorite ride at the park. As soon as he entered the room Monday morning, he excitedly told me he rode Peter Pan for me and "it was weally, weally fun!"

5. We had our first tornado watch of the season on Thursday, but did not end up getting any severe weather. We are jumpy in these parts when tornado watches are issued (with just cause).

6. Even though we didn't get any severe weather, we did get a small thunderstorm with some very hard rain that blew in from the south straight against the front of the house. We badly need the rain, so it was good  to get it, even though it was short-lived. And although we've had snow and freezing rain and sleet, we haven't had much in the way of rain since we got Ruby. She was ricocheting around the room as the rain hit the house, then jumped on a table and tried to "catch" it as it hit the window.

7. Beautiful sunsets like this one through the storm clouds reminds me of a quote from Robert Browning, "God is in His heaven, all's right with the world!"

Sky above North Middle School.

8. Lunch with a friend where you act stupid and take selfies to put on Twitter and embarrass your daughters. And may I add, a friend who will not only tell me I have cheese in my hair (unlike an ENTIRE DOCTOR'S OFFICE), but will take a napkin and wipe it off. 

9. I took a picture of one of my pre-k boys as he played with a toy tool bench (and was so convincing that, had he had real tools, I feel he would have completely dismantled some shelves and sawed them into pieces) and sent it to his mom, because she teaches in the public school and never gets to come by the preschool. This is her reply, which warmed my heart:

Soooo, we've been talking about vegetables this week for "V" week, and if your pre-k teacher won't tell you that asparagus makes your pee smell funny, then who will? Love that he remembers what we talk about in class and then tells his family about it.

10. This week marks the two year anniversary of my bilateral mastectomy and free tram flap reconstruction, and by all indications, there has been no further evidence of cancer. Yippeeee!!!

I am participating in the A to Z Challenge for the month of April. I have absolutely no idea what I'm getting myself into, but if you'd like to be a part of what could be a train wreck on my part, then just follow me and see for yourself.

And now, my bloggy friends, put your own list of thankfuls together and link them up here. Or for you non-bloggy people, click on any of the links below and read what some others find thankful in their lives. Some are funny, some are touching, some are heartbreaking, all are worth reading.

Ten Things of Thankful

 Your hosts


  1. Asparagus pee! Don't believe anyone who says he/she doesn't have it. It's been proved: everyone gets it, but some people can't smell it.
    Truly loved reading your anniversary post. Off and on all morning and never got a chance to comment. Thanks so much for sharing the journey since I didn't know you back then. And let's say that small package coming your way is an anniversary gift as well as a prize.
    That Robert Browning quote makes me think of Anne Shirley. A lot of famous Shakespeare (and I admit, the Bible) quotes I learned first from LM Montgomery.

    1. I may have succeeded in getting some preschoolers to try asparagus, just so they can see if their pee smells funny.
      Thank you, Sarah! I truly believe being such a Pollyanna helped, as did the ability to laugh at myself (and anyone else who came across my path).

  2. Are you in the A-Z group I'm in yet? I have a feeling you are...aren't you?

    I LOVE how fitting it is that your favourite is the Peter Pan ride. That's perfect.

    Not so keen on the storms, but AWESOME that your kid from Pre-K went home and asked about asparagus.

    Also, you got cheese on your hair AGAIN?!?!?! HOW DO YOU DO IT?

    Glad you enjoyed your (disappointingly teeny tiny) scoops, but LOOK AT THAT WAFFLE WAFER! Wow!

    If you ever make it to here, I'll take you to Sprinkles. And YES alright, I'm finally relenting on the ice-cream issue. But not on chocolate.

    And FYI, I slid along the hall floor this morning, in my socks, just for you. And I nearly fell down. And it was amazing fun.

    1. Yes, you invited me to your A-Z group, even though I don't know what it means....
      Peter Pan is am amazing ride!
      Storms suck. Any time you get to talk about fun stuff like pee in class, it's a good time. Unless it's a puddle of pee on the floor. That's not so fun.
      The waffle wafer was delish, as was the ice cream. I liked the goat cheese and cherries the best.
      I DON'T KNOW HOW I GET CHEESE IN MY HAIR. I'm an active nacho eater, I think.
      You KNOW I want to go to Sprinkles.
      Nearly falling down is what makes it more exciting!

  3. The biggest thing on your list is definitely no. 10. Yay for 2 years of being cancer-free! I saw the first German asparagus in the stores today. Soon, all of our pee is smelling funny until about mid.June, when the season is over and we're sick of it for another year :-) Have a great weekend, Dyanne!

    1. Thanks, Stephanie! I love roasted asparagus. Need to be on the lookout for fresh asparagus in the stores, now that I keep thinking about it so much!

  4. when my dyslexic alter ego first read your title I thought "what does Dyanne have against tomatoes?" idiot! ... did you know that only certain (granted the majority ) of people have the enzyme that digests asparagus in such a fashion that it makes your pee smell funny? SO some folks dont have that... I forgot the percentage but somewhere in the twentieth percentile... why do I know this stuff!? I love ruby! I dont think I have ever said that about a cat before.... true confession...
    Im doing the a to z also... gotta get my bloggy on...


    1. Actually, I hate tomatoes....
      I'm hoping 16 little kiddos want to try asparagus to see if they are part of the majority.
      Ruby trying to catch raindrops was pretty funny, especially when she did her meerkat imitation.
      AND THANK YOUUUU!!! Just hoping to keep on keeping on.

  5. congrats on that two year mark, part of the path back into the middle of the bell-curve, which, in certain situations is a very good place to be.
    surprise day offs are good
    anything involving the use of the words: tornado and warning, not so much

    1. Thanks, Clark! Yes, sometimes it is best to be in the middle of the herd, isn't it? And thankfully, it was only a watch. We have lots of those that never lead to any warnings at all. Still make you jumpy, though.

  6. For some reason I have never thought about how one would cross the Mississippi River. Of course there are bridges! Duh.

  7. It's I don't know what time it is anymore because my kid keeps waking me up before 5am...and I have a serious need to make out with that ice cream.
    Kids, aside from wake up calls, are weally weally hilarious. And parents are crazy for taking a pre-k to Disney. I am not.
    #10 is by far the best. So happy for you!!!!!!!! Dance. Dance. Dance. Shake ya booty. Dance Dance.

    1. That ice cream is SPLENDID, just like the name. And they let you try every single one of them before you decide. And give you the samples with a smile on their faces while they tell you about the Bolivian vanilla and essences of lemongrass and fancy schmancy stuff like that. And it costs $5.50 for that itty bitty bowl and WORTH EVERY PENNY.
      I wouldn't (and didn't) take our kids to Disney until they were probably too old to appreciate it - 9 and 13. But no strollers - wheeee!
      And thank you! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  8. Two years?!?!? That is fantastic news and may it keep on coming! That is the best news of the post. The rest of it was pretty darn fantastic too. I have a complete fear of bridges! I cannot stand to drive over them and I even have dreams about them. In my dreams they just go straight up....and then straight down. Terrifying!
    I wish I had a friend that would wipe food off of me. I went somewhere with my kids last week and was talking to someone, only to get back in the car and see that I had a piece of my lunch right under my eyebrow (don't ask?) and they never said a word. They actually thought it was funny and whoever I was talking to...I don't even want to know what they were thinking!
    Asparagus! Love the stuff but cannot stand that smell.
    Very glad to hear the tornado watch was nothing. I can just imagine the feeling y'all must get when you hear those words.

    1. Thanks, Sandy! Oh, I hate, hate HAAAATE bridges. The one over the Ohio is particularly heinous. I need to send you a picture. It goes straight up and straight down and is barely two lanes wide with no shoulder of any kind. My bridge nightmares have the bridge getting closer and closer to the water, until the water is covering the roadway and I'm trying to stay on the bridge without driving into the water. TERRIFYING.
      When ten people in a doctor's office see you and don't tell you that you have cheese in your hair, you wonder about their ability to treat you properly, don't you? I saw my oncologist at church this morning and told him I had a repeat with the cheese, but THIS time, my friend was kind enough to TELL me I had cheese in my hair. He said I need to figure out what I'm doing wrong that this has become a problem.
      Same with asparagus. Phewy!
      That's the only bad thing about spring is the storms. I'm sure we'll have several sleepless nights before it's all over.

  9. You are a beautiful person and your 10 just made my heart soar!!! xoxoxox!!! jean!

  10. At first I thought the "Mom doesn't know yet" boy got his wish! Oh well, I'm glad the other boy enjoyed the Peter Pan ride. I haven't been to Disney World, but if the Peter Pan ride is like the one in Disneyland, I love that, too.

    I assume your pre-K kids are familiar with beets, too, then. :-)

    I've never experienced a tornado, but I've been terrified of them ever since learning about them in 3rd grade. We used to watch the most awful natural disaster movies for science. I used to have nightmares! The movies always ended with a statement like, "Remember, tornados can strike anytime, anywhere." I was constantly on the lookout for the development of funnel clouds--which are NOT common in Oregon! (Now, earthquakes here in southern California are another matter--we've had 3 in the past 2 weeks, not counting little aftershocks.)

    #10 is terrific news!

    1. Yes, the Disney World Peter Pan is just like the Disneyland one. Loooove that ride! Just a little awkward getting on and off....

      We did not discuss beets. We do discuss bright blue food coloring and what it does to poop when you eat cupcakes with bright blue frosting. Love when they come back to school the next time and tell me, "You were right! My poop was GREEN!"

      The good thing about tornadoes is they are generally predictable. One will not drop out of a clear blue sky. They can be seen on radar, and even if one develops quickly, you're not completely caught off guard, because they are always accompanied by severe thunderstorms. Now earthquakes are another story. Having experienced both, I think I'll take the tornado. My LA friends usually disagree with me.

  11. Congrats on the two year anniversary....a tremendously important milestone!!!! And you're in my prayers, always!

  12. Yay! I didn't know you were participating in A to Z!!

    That ice cream sounds incredible :)

    1. I'm giving it a whirl. I'm thinking I'd better read the rules before Tuesday.

      That ice cream IS incredible!

  13. *whew* so glad your tornado warning was nothing to worry about. I know the word tornado strikes fear for us in tornado alley.

    #10 = HUGE THANKFUL!! *hugs* so happy for you, Dyanne!

    OMG Ruby is getting so big I can't believe it!!

    hahaha asparagus, right?

    Time with friends (and silly selfies) are the BEST.

    1. Meh, it was just a watch. Now mid-week, they are anticipating the weather will be more severe. Can't. Wait.
      And thanks so much! Every day is that much closer to the five year mark.
      Ruby SHOULD be getting big; she eats constantly.
      HATE the smell. Bleh!
      Especially if you can embarrass your 15 year olds.

  14. Ahh that sunset photo is amazing, and long live the selfie!

    1. Loved the way the sun lit up that cloud. I can only imagine what a real photographer with a real camera could do with it, since it turned out pretty well with just an iphone.

  15. My family love the Peter Pan ride too. We went on it a few times last time we were at Disney (Paris in January last year, which is cold compared to Florida!)
    Such good news about your two year anniversary and long may you continue to be healthy!
    Loved the Ruby pic, as always.

    1. It would be SO COOL to ride Peter Pan in Paris.Way better than Florida OR California!
      And thank you very much! I plan to stay healthy!
      I always think of you when I include a pic of Ruby!

  16. UGH! I hate traffic, and traveling when things do not go smoothly. Glad you had so much happy mixed in. The ice cream looks fabulous, Happy anniversary-so awesome, and three cheers for preschool teachers (and kids)

    1. All I could think of while we were sitting on the freeway like that was that it was a good thing neither of us had to go to the bathroom! Although there was a porta-potty on the bridge where the workers were. Do you think they would have minded if we'd...? Well, glad we didn't have to find out!
      The ice cream was, indeed, fabulous!
      And thank you! It's a pretty terrific anniversary!

  17. That ice cream looks SO good.

    We might have a tornado on Wednesday. Fun.

    My daughter loves that Peter Pan ride!

    1. The ice cream was soooo good. And it's available mail order, but I can't even imagine what that would cost.
      We're expecting severe weather again this week, with Wednesday the worst day. Do we live close to each other?!
      Peter Pan is da bomb!

  18. The ice cream looks and sounds amazing! We head south on Friday afternoon. Need to keep that ice cream stop in mind...I assume it's in Nashville as well??

    We had our first tornado drill at school last week. That season is upon us and of course, lasts well into fall! I love a thunderstorm so long as I know there's no risk of a twister!

    Great story about the preschooler and his veggie tales! :)

  19. Where we live now, I hardly have to ever deal with traffic and its wonderful! I'm thankful for that and the fact that Spring is finally approaching!

  20. Holy mackerel! I didn't know you were on this bridge last week! We took the exact same route in reverse just yesterday! You should have stopped at the kill billy place. It's a mile off of I-24 at exit 16, the next time you go to Nashville.