Posts tagged ‘Ike’

Seven Quick Takes (vol.6)

I am loving this four day work week! If only corporate America would adopt this into their regular schedule, that would be fantastic. I’ll keep dreaming.

Today’s edition is a little bit different, as my comments aren’t totally random. If you’d like to read more Quick Takes, go to or click on this photo.


Today is a big day for three reasons. On this day last year, we were evacuating because a monster named Ike was heading our way. On this day eight years ago, I was sitting in Biology II when a girl ran in the classroom and told us that terrorists had hijacked a couple planes and crashed into the Pentagon and World Trade Center. On this day 51 years ago, my dad was born. While there may be a lot of discussion about the first two today, I am choosing to discuss the third.

My dad is the smiliest man you’ll ever meet. “That’s not even a word!” Okay okay, he smiles the most of anyone I know. I can’t even tell you how many people have asked me, “Does your dad ever get mad?” Well, yes. Yes he does. But he mostly smiles.

My dad is one of the most Biblically smart people I’ve ever met. Well, actually he’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. But I tend to think that Biblical knowledge is superior to any other type. In fact, my dad is Jesus. And a rabbi. Or at least he played those two things in plays at church. This would be a great time for a picture… But I don’t have one. Sorry. Just imagine a 6’4 tall, skinny man with a fake beard. Here, just throw a beard and a robe on this guy.

Dad and I

He’s written his own Bible studies that are used all over the country. You can click here if you’re interested in using them, they’re free. He even records them so you can listen to them. He smiles when he’s talking too, you’ll hear it.

There is a history of weird license plates in my dad’s life and he thinks they are pretty cool. He owned a car that had the license plate: THE KAR. His initials are KAR. His truck’s plates are THE TRUK. Don’t think that’s clever? Well, his name is Kurt and “Truk” is Kurt backwards. Ahhhh.

My dad runs down the stairs sideways and at a very risky pace. One time when I was in college, I brought a boyfriend home with me. Dad ran down the stairs and fell. It was quite awkward for all involved parties. That didn’t slow him down though. He still does this. Although we think he’s slowing a bit because the stairs at the beach house are wood and slippery.

If you want to know where I get my creativity from, it may or may not be from my dad. I think we are all pretty randomly creative. Some areas we excel in, some we are just awful. My dad writes limericks. My parents have thrown a New Years Ever party every year for about 26 years and each year, my dad writes a limerick for the invitation. He writes them for random parties and cards. It’s one of his sweet skills.

He also changes the words to songs. Keep reading if you’re willing to have a common song ruined… forever.

Each Christmas there is a song that is played that I HATE. Angels We Have Heard On High. HATE it. “Blasphemy!” No, it’s true. When I was a little kid I always thought they were saying “Gloria, in ex Chelsea’s deo” instead of “Gloria, in excelsis deo.” And that’s annoying to a little kid. (Except when you’re listening to your Chipmunk’s cassette tape and they are singing Jesse’s Girl and you think they are singing “Chelsea’s Girl” just for you even though that makes it a lesbian song and the Chipmunks just aren’t down with that.) Anyways, in about 4th grade my dad made it much worse. He changed the words to “In my Chelsea’s day bed.” I have hated it ever since. Just sing it in your head right now. Awful. I’m sure I’ll talk about this again when Christmas rolls around.  You’re welcome.

One of the most important things that my dad ever taught me was this: Everyone’s favorite word is their own name. ALWAYS remember someone’s name. This is so true.

Another extremely important thing he taught me was to ALWAYS pay the church first, then pay yourself. You’ll always have enough money if you remember to pay the church first. I’ve been adhering to this since I was a little girl and got my first allowance, and he has yet to be proven wrong. The Lord always provides.

Happy birthday to my daddy! He is one of the most loving and generous people you will ever get the honor to know. If you know him, he’s touched your life. Guaranteed. I love you dad!!

And because I know many of you will be reading about 9-11 today and I don’t want you to ignore Ike, I’m posting a couple photos so you non-Houstonians/Galvestonians can see how terrible it was.

This first one isn’t so bad. This is my mom and dad cleaning up all the smaller branches in their yard.

Dad and Mom

And here is the tree that fell in our backyard. It’s this tree’s branch that punctured a hole in our bathroom ceiling. At this point, we had no idea that our bathroom was ruined.


And here is where the tree fell.


Just a few more from my neighborhood… you can click on any of them to make them bigger.


September 11, 2009 at 9:38 am 24 comments

Pictures of My Grown Up Life

Happy 090909, friends!

Remember yesterday when I talked about being a grown up? I thought I’d show you a few pictures of my grown up life.

First, here are the photos of our bathroom that I’ve owed you for quite some time. In case you forgot, our bathroom looked like this on September 12, 2008.


That’s mold. Ike hit our neighborhood pretty hard. A tree in our backyard fell on our neighbor’s garage and on the way down, a branch punctured our bathroom ceiling, resulting in mold. And this.


So we gutted our bathroom. We played around with the idea of redoing it ourselves since we’re poor. But after about 7 months and no bathroom, we decided to hire someone. We patched up the skylight because we thought it was quite ugly. We tore out the furdowns above the vanity and above the shower to open up the teeny room a bit. This is what we’ve got now.


This is the view from our bedroom. It’s a very tiny bathroom. Just a toilet, standing shower, and sink. And here is the view from the toilet.



So there you go. You waited all that time for those pictures and I’m sure you’re underwhelmed. I make no apologies.

I’m not posting photos of our painted bedroom just yet because we just bought some curtains. Once we hang those, I’ll take some photos and show you how pretty my tissue papered walls look.

Want more pictures of my adult life? This is what we did on Saturday.


Those are our disgusting wood panel walls. Actually, that is one of the built in bookshelves. The walls are real wood and are actually pretty rough so they don’t need to be sanded. But the area behind the shelves and the area around the bay window are super glossy and fake. We sanded them down so that I could prime and paint this weekend. I like how Stephen’s arm is blurry from the vibrations of the sander. That black stick looking thing is the vacuum hose. I was waving it in the air while he sanded so we could try to capture some of the dust. I’d like to think that it helped, even though our house was COVERED in tiny dust particles.

And here is a picture of me taking a sanding break to put Molly in her game day clothes and force her to take a picture with me.


It should be noted that I’m wearing a homemade shirt that says “My Buddy Has Sweet Skills.” Lyndsey and I made those shirts in college. We were in an organization called Diamonds. Long story but we did stuff for the University of Texas baseball program. We were all assigned “buddies” on the team. Our job was to be their #1 fan. I could write an entire post about my mixed feelings on that subject, but I won’t. I’ll just say that my Sweet Skills t-shirt is about 40,000 times cooler than my buddy that year. Although it did speak the truth, my buddy did have sweet skills.

Please also take a look behind me. That is our monstrous fireplace. That is one of the things about our house that I actually love. You just don’t find those in new homes. You’ll see more photos of the living room next week after I paint it.

I hope you enjoyed the quick peek into my life. I’ll leave you with one more photo of how my life is so adult.

Stephen Geese

Sometimes my husband chases geese.

September 9, 2009 at 9:12 am 16 comments

Finding Shelter From the Storm

I’ve lived in Nassau Bay since 1990. That’s 19 years (it’s Monday, we could all use a little help) minus my 4 college years and the 4 months Stephen and I lived in our Pearland apartment. I’ve experienced a lot in the neighborhood. Some good. Some bad. All exciting.


My neighborhood is known for a few things. It used to be known as that neighborhood across the street from NASA. I’ve had many people throughout my life ask me if my neighbors are astronauts. (In case you’re wondering, no, they aren’t.) Then, back in 2002, an unfortunate event changed the reputation of Nassau Bay. Clara Harris drove over her husband in the parking lot of the neighborhood Hilton, where just months before, my high school was having their prom. Of course this story made national news. As it should. What a psycho. But it would have been nice if the media would have said the hotel was in Houston. Nope, this makes better news. A little city of about 4100, just a hop away from NASA. Thank you media. Why did you have to start being accurate with this story??


I bet most of you forgot about that story. Nassau Bay is no longer defined by Mrs. Harris’ driving record. Now it’s all about storms. During Rita, The Weather Channel broadcast from Nassau Bay. I was on my couch in my dry, safe apartment in Austin. I was terrified. Once the broadcasters saw that all they were going to be able to report was miles of traffic, they moved on. But a couple short years later, they came back. Ike was sure to hit us. So dozens and dozens of reports set up camp at (where else?!) the neighborhood Hilton. I watched with my husband and parents from a hotel in Stephenville, Texas. I can remember going out to eat and having our eyes glued to the tv when we were waiting for our table. The hostess asked me, “Do yall live somewhere around there?” The terror in my eyes must have given me away. “We live there. Exactly there. That’s our neighborhood.” That was a scary week. I had a house to worry about. Nassau Bay floods. That’s not news. That wasn’t something Stephen and I were tricked into when we bought our house. We knew what we were getting ourselves into.


Now, all of a sudden, even thunderstorms are scary. We were out of town last week and didn’t see the immediate results of the downpour. Of course we saw the sewage in our backyard and the waterlines in the front yard. But that’s about it. And that’s not too scary. Friday. Was. Scary.


Stephen was out of town on a men’s retreat. My parents were in Austin so Molly was spending the weekend with Rookie and me. Dogs don’t care for thunder. Or stobe lightening. They especially don’t like it when the power goes off. Wives don’t like being home alone. Or 5 hour storms. Or leaks. They especially don’t like it when the power goes off. But I was the adult. I had to pull it together. I put cups under the leaks, put my big girl panties on, and dealt with it. I told the girls that it would all be okay.


But as my front yard looked like this,

All of the reflections should tell you that the enitre street is under water. About 3/4 of the yard was too.

All of the reflections should tell you that the enitre street is under water. About 3/4 of the yard was too.

and our backyard looked like this,

Atleast it'll wash away that sewage from last week...

The black part is water. At least it'll wash away that sewage from last week...

I wanted to look like this.

...minus the devil eyes.

...minus the devil eyes.

April 27, 2009 at 1:06 pm 4 comments

How Ike Ruined Our Lives

I’ll be generous and say that there’s nobody over the age of 18 that wouldn’t recognize the theme song to Cheers. Why is it so well known? Well, yes it’s a catchy song. (Just wait, you’ll have it in your head all day… “where everybody knows your name”…) But its the whole concept of the show that made it so popular. We loved the fact that they had “their bar.”  They were like a family. They had their seats and their drinks. And America eats this up. We all have this deep need for ownership. Just think about it. You have your grocery store, your song, your route, your nail salon, your restaurant. So we love the song. We want to go to a place where everyone knows our name. Or at least our face. 

And how do you choose these? I’m sure there are a lot of factors. Maybe you like your grocery store because it gives free cheese samples. Maybe you have your coffee shop because they make the meanest pumpkin spice latte in town. Whatever the reason, one thing is for sure: It strikes your fancy. When Stephen and I bought our house, we quickly found a place that struck our fancy. It was this little Mexican restaurant that has gone by at least 6 names since 1990, when the Rosenhagen family moved to Nassau Bay. When we bought Hurst Castle, this restaurant was going by the name The Green Tomato. We loved this place. 

Let me tell you why. 

It’s close. It takes us about 2 minutes to get there. There is never a wait. You can pick your table if you want to. They have cheap margaritas. (Let’s face it, this is the selling point!) They have fajitas for 2 for the price of 1 on certain nights. Which means we buy one order and have it for dinner and lunch the next day– 4 meals! The chips are great. The chip man rocks! He always brings us a big bowl of their green sauce because he knows we like it so much. They only have like 2 waiters. We always got the girl and she was fantastic. Basically, this was OUR restaurant. (Reread that paragraph. You’ll notice a mixture of “is” and “was”…. Hmmm…. what could that mean?!) 

Does anyone remember September 13, 2008? The coast had a visitor. He spent quite a bit of time in the little city of Nassau Bay. He came uninvited, kicked us out of our homes, knocked down our trees, punched holes in our roofs, and left sewage in our yard. He was such a jerk. Because of the damage he did, many of us weren’t allowed to come back to our homes for a while. This caused tons of problems. It made our freezer smell like …. I have no words. There’s nothing that can describe it. (Thanks MK for sneaking in and cleaning out the worst of it while we were exiled!) Due to our late arrival, we had much worse damage in our master bathroom. Sitting water does nasty things. (More on this in the coming days/weeks.) One of the worst parts of it all was that businesses suffered. They lost inventory, they lost TONS of customers for days and days. Do you see whats coming? 

Our beloved Green Tomato suffered. Word on the street is that there was some shady business going on with not paying vendors, so the owner high tailed it to California or Colorado or some other state that starts with a C. We were devastated. Stephen and I broke down in tears regularly. We cursed the idiot named Ike who ruined our lives. We dressed in black and mourned the loss of our restaurant. We turned off our phones and drew the curtains and sulked in our pity.  We refused to eat. It really sucked, but I think you get the picture. 

The restaurant is on our way home. So each day we glance over, hoping something new was coming. One day we saw some workers at the building at we were thrilled. We started daydreaming about the future. We saw visions of homemade tortilla chips, tequila, and queso. Then we started thinking… what if it’s not Mexican food. We live in Houston, TX so there are high odds that it IS Mexican… but you never know. I’m not too incredibly picky. There are only three types of restaurants I won’t go to. 1. Cajun. I just can’t do it. I’m a wimp. If I eat that food I continually reapply chapstick and want to tear out my tongue. 2. Indian. I just hate it. I hate the smells. I can’t pronounce the food. And most importantly, I hate the taste. 3. Seafood. I don’t like fish. I do like shrimp and crawfish. But since my hubby is quite allergic to shellfish, and I’m too young to be a window, we stay far away from these restaurants. 

We said our prayers and hoped for the best. Something cheap. Something yummy. Something that wasn’t a chain. But hey, beggers can’t be choosers, right? So even if it was nasty, expensive, and national we would probably still go. Maybe just the one time. But still. 

Construction on this place has been going on for a couple weeks. Each day, as we pass it, we glance over to see if they’ve put up a sign. We were so hopeful. Ignorance is bliss, right? A couple days ago, they put up the sign. I was in the middle of an extremely exciting story (I don’t remember the story, but I’m sure it was super entertaining… you read my blog, right?!) and Stephen was like, “Oh….. look.” In that moment, my world came crashing down. The pain of losing our first love came rushing back. I started wondering about the housing marketing and our home equity and if it was too quick to move to a new neighborhood. 

A neighborhood that had a cozy Mexican food restaurant. 

Not a Cuisine of India.

April 23, 2009 at 10:50 am 10 comments


June 2023


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