Lazy weekends are my favorite

There is nothing I look forward to more than a weekend where I have absolutely nothing planned. I love knowing that if I wanted to, I could just lay in bed for two days straight (other than to occasionally make sure Little Monkey isn't getting himself into too much trouble).

So far, I have planned walks with friends around the park this morning and tomorrow morning and I know I need to get in a 9 mile run. Other than that, my weekend is my own. Ahhh, no stress makes me happy!


A Streetcar Named Inspire

The YLC (Young Leadership Council) in New Orleans has commissioned 80 replica streetcar sculptures which have been painted in tons of different ways representing different aspects of New Orleans. The project is similar to the cows in Chicago, pigs in Seattle, and the previous fish in New Orleans. Click here for the press release on the project.Anyway, they are really pretty cool so I decided to start taking pics as I come across them and post them on here for y'all to see. I found these first three examples in the French Quarter last month.


Bahamian Trip Giveaway at The Tale of a Southern Belle

This expires tonight so get yourself over to Tale of a Southern Belle right now to win a trip to The Bahamas. She won the trip and can't use it so she is giving it away. Go enter and hopefully me or you may win!


Goodbye Mardi Gras... We'll see you again next year.

Well, it is with some sadness that I announce Mardi Gras will officially be coming to an end within hours. We had a great season. I can't wait until next year when Little Monkey can really enjoy it. Our weekend was jam packed with festivities. We were invited to the Bacchus Rendezvous. This is the big party that is thrown at the Convention Center as the parade wraps up. The parade snakes into the Convention Center and all attendees get to watch it inside with no interruptions. I had never been before and we had a wonderful time. We got to dress in our finest formal attire and hobnob with the Bacchus royalty.(Me showing off my best catches from the floats)(Val Kilmer, King of Bacchus)
I leave you with one of my favorite Mardi Gras songs, "Ain't No Place To Pee on Mardi Gras Day". I agree that the image of the fishtank is a bit odd and doubt it is significant in any way, but the song is great!

Back to blogging about real life tomorrow.


Mardi Gras Anticipation=Stress!

(Muses is an all women's krewe that is famous for throwing decorated shoes. You can't tell but this was a huge high-heeled shoe float with women riding in it)

Mardi Gras is now in full swing here in NOLA and with it comes stress that comes with all things Mardi Gras related. We were talking about this at work recently. It seems we all agreed that along with the excitement and anticipation of an awesome time comes an added amount of stress. There are so many decisions to be made...

which parades will I go to?
where will we park?
what will I wear?
will it be cold?
will there be a place to pee?
where will i stand? will it be too crowded?
will the baby get hit in the face with beads? should we take him at all?
how will i carry all my beads? should i bring a bag?Additionally, for us, we have a big parade that passes by the coffeeshop. It is our biggest money making day of the year and takes a bit of planning and lots of work.
But, in the end it is all worth it. Starting yesterday, the City came alive with the anticipation of the first big parades. People wander aimlessly in the streets, kids sit patiently atop ladders waiting for their stuffed animal throws, and the aroma of Popeye's Fried Chicken fills the streets!

Last night, I left LM and BM at home and joined some friends on The Avenue (that's St. Charles Ave, for those not local) and caught three really great parades, Krewe of Babylon, Krewe of Chaos, and Krewe of Muses. We had a fabulous time!Today, I joined some ladies whose husbands/male family members are in the Krewe of Hermes which rolls tonight. We went to Muriel's and as always the food was delicious.
Tonight, I decided to stay home and catch up on my blogging. More Mardi Gras news to follow.


Little Monkey does his first Mardi Gras parade right!

While in Baton Rouge this weekend, my girlfriend and I took our little ones to The Krewe Mystique de la Capitale Mardi Gras parade. We had a wonderful time. Baton Rouge parades are great because there are a lot less crowds and the parades are shorter. The Little Monkey really had no clue what was going on but he did have a great time going for a ride in the Radio Flyer red wagon.
Now, I'm totally getting psyched up for this weekend's festivities.

Happy Mardi Gras!


Was someone named Murphy running with me...

...because, whatever could have gone wrong today did on the 10k race I ran! We packed up the car and headed to Baton Rouge so we could spend some time with the family and I could get a race in for my training. The race started at 9am so I figured I could get there by 8:15 to find parking, register and get mentally prepared.

I woke up, took a look at the clock on my mom's microwave which said 6am. I thought "I've got plenty of time" and went back to sleep. Woke up at 6:40 am, took a shower, and then jumped in the car to get LM some milk at the quickie-mart. As I am heading home, I happen to look at the clock in the car which says 8:10!!! My mom's clock was an hour slow and now I am officially late, so I dump the milk off and fly towards downtown BR. Of course, I don't know the area so I couldn't find parking. Finally, the parking gods lead me to the overflow parking for the casino the race started at. I registered and finally settled in to start.

I then turn on my new Garmin, only to find the battery almost dead! (I can only blame myself. I had ample time to charge it last night, but figured it wasn't needed). Luckily, I have a stopwatch on my Ipod and I set that. So, the Garmin dies 18 seconds into the race and then I notice that my headphones are only working in one ear. So the whole race, I had music in only one ear. What a mess!

The good news, though, is that I came in with my best time ever, by far! 1:04:41! I had expected to come in at about 1:08 so I was stunned when I hit mile 1 in under 10 minutes. As I was running, I was beating my time every mile. Thank God for the Ipod stopwatch. I can not run without a timer.

So, all in all, I am really proud of myself and it motivates me to continue my training for the Half Marathon end of April.


Should Mardi Gras be declared a National Holiday?

Today, I received the following email:

News from NOLA!

Ive been reading your blog and can tell youre passionate about supporting the best New Orleans has to offer. I wanted you to know that Zatarain’s is sponsoring a petition to declare Mardi Gras a national holiday. We’d love for you and your readers to help by signing the petition at http://www.motionformardigras.com/


Liz Cron

For Zatarain’s

I have to admit I have mixed feelings about this. Lots of things make New Orleans special, but Mardi Gras is our shining star. Lots of other cities have little parties to commemorate Mardi Gras but nobody does it like New Orleans. Why would we want to dilute that by sharing it with the rest of the world? So, sorry, Zatarain's, I can't sign your petition, but I will share it with my readers and they are free to join your cause if they see fit.

BUT, I certainly love me some Zatarain's and would love to have you as an advertiser if you want to make an offer!


The Little Monkey loves his blankie

LM has never been one for comfort items. He never used a pacifier and, until now, has not ben attached to any particular stuffed animals or lovies.

Little Monkey's nursery theme was all things monkey, of course, and before LM was born we received a special gift from my step-mother, JB. It was a really cute blanket with a monkey print on the front and soft flannel on the back. For the last couple of months, LM has been put to bed with this blanket and just recently, he has become very attached to it. Unfortunately, it is way to big and he keeps tripping over it as he drags it around the house.

So, I desparately called to see if any fabric was left to make a miniature version and sure enough it looks like there may be. Can't wait to get it in the mail!


Ever wonder how Elmo came to be?

Not much exciting going on in the Monkey House this week and I'm having a bit of blogger's block, so I thought you might find this article interesting. Click on the photo to discover how the Muppets and Sesame Street characters came into being...


It's Carnival Time!?

Well, the first parade of the Mardi Gras season, Krewe Du Vieux, came and went this weekend, and I'm still not feeling the carnival spirit yet this year.

We've only have one king cake at work which is odd. Normally, there would be a continuous flow since the person who gets the baby is supposed to bring the next king cake.

Hopefully, as things pick up next weekend, I'll get more into catching fake dog poop, shiny beads, and ladies' undies!


A Rare Display of Affection

Little Monkey loves his daddy! He usually saves most displays of affection for Big Monkey, but today he ran up to me and sat in my lap and then put his head on my chest like a baby. It was very cute!


Update on half marathon training

This is my first week of half-marathon training. You can follow my progress daily on the left sidebar under my BlogHer ads. I will keep y'all updated there. I am using Hal Higdon's program for novices and am starting on week 7 since I don't have much time. I feel like I've done pretty well so far. Today I didn't have time to get in my 4.5 mile run because it was too cold this morning so I brought Little Monkey to the babysitter at the gym and tried to do it on the treadmill.

I HATE the treadmill! I can't run long distances on it and you are only allowed to go 30 minutes when people are waiting so I only got in 2.5 miles. I am going to have a rest day tomorrow and go for a 50 minute bike ride on Saturday. Sunday will be my longest run ever at 7 miles. I am a little nervous about that.


Forever Young!

The summer camp I went to for 5 years as a kid has been posting old pictures on Facebook. These pics are of me at age 8 and 12, I think.

I was trying to get a picture of The Little Monkey from the same angle as the top picture but haven't been able to yet. Upon examining this photo and photos of LM, he doesn't look as much like me as I thought. His eyes are wider and dark brown, while mine are hazel. He has a definite cleft chin like Big Monkey.

I don't know if you can tell but that is a definite perm I am sporting in the second photo, circa 1988! I look like something out of Welcome Back, Kotter.


Little Monkey Dancing in the Streets!

Little Monkey gets jiggy with it in the French Quarter!


A Beautiful Day in the French Quarter

Saturday, my father and his friend, Ms. K, came into town and BM, LM, and I joined them in the French Quarter. After coffee and beignets at Cafe Du Monde, we were still hungry for some real food so we headed to the place that invented the best sandwich in the world, The Muffaletta. Central Grocery is an awesome little Italian deli and The Muffaletta is the best mix of bread meat, cheese and olives you have ever tasted.

After we were stuffed, we took some time to just relax in Jackson Square. The sun was shining, there was a nice breeze, and it was all around just a beautiful day. Little Monkey had a great time running around and playing on the lawn.