Kathryn “Katie” Yarbrough, 1914-2011

I don’t have the eloquence to write a proper response to the death of my dear, sweet, friend Katie, or to adequately describe what knowing her was like. How do you relate what it feels like to be loved, unconditionally by someone who has no reason to care about you, but somehow does? I’ll just say this: I’ve known a lot of fine, Godly people in my life, but no one has shown me the love of Jesus, or been a living reflection of who He is, better than her.

I’m blessed to have known you, Katie. And I’ll never forget you.

AI Recap – Let the Bickering Begin

Ahh, we’re starting off with a touchy feely look back at the elimination that wasn’t.  “Hope has been Renewed!” Wow. For a second there I thought we were talking about what amounts to a musical game show. But suddenly I feel like peace will reign, politicians will do the right thing, and I’m going to drop those last 14 pounds by eating O’Charley’s rolls.

Here come our judges.  JLo is looking GOOD even with the largest earrings known to man.  I really had no idea that I was going to like her this much. Ryan has a new hairdo and looks about 12. Randy is Randy and Stephen is tranny, let’s get started!

It’s Elton John night. I like all of his music. I might have to go to Itunes and actually buy some.

First up, Scotty’s singing Country Comfort. I think he sounds respectable and the “love you Grandma” just melted hearts everywhere. Stephen says something about high-heeled cowboy boots, Jennifer says he has great instincts, Randy feels like he’s at a Scotty concert. As an expert on the hopes and dreams of silly, country girls, I say he’s making it to the top 3 based on their nimble fingers alone. I want more personality, but I’m giving him a B+.

Naima is singing a reggae version of I’m Still Standing. I LOVE reggae so she’s already making me happy. Well, it wasn’t pitch perfect but they are always harping about making it your own, and she sure DID. Jennifer says the song was a poor choice for reggae, Randy agrees and uses the “C” word – CORNY, Stephen is useless. It did border on a cruise boat reggae show and while I enjoy the “mad flavor” of reggae, I predict most people will hate it. C-

Here comes my favorite – Paul. Despite once singing Rocket Man and bombing, he’s giving it another go. Hmm. As much as I love this dude’s voice, it’s like he’s the musical version of Sominex. Could he be any more CHILL? And that last “long, long time” was just about lame. Randy says he needs to “go there”, JLo says he probably has more power than even he knows, Stephen is mentally unstable and says he won’t like it when Paul hits all the notes. Which would be a lovely thought coming from Paul’s family but not so great for a JUDGE. Sorry Paul, but I say C.

Oh joy, Pia is doing ANOTHER ballad.  I don’t care that she hit the high note -I’m starting to find her annoying. Wearing a dress that is one octave from showing the fine china, disregarding the judge’s critique, I don’t even like her hair! I guess you could say I’m over her. Stephen says he’s crying on the inside, JLo felt her more than before, Randy says she slayed it. I guess I’m outvoted. I’ll be mature and give her an A. minus.

Stephano is singing Tiny Dancer. Please be good, I love this song.  Ah, good job little Stephano, you kept your eyes open! JD is watching with me and thinks he’s killing it, in a good way. It just makes me want to go to You Tube and listen to the original. But he finally finds a way to connect with JLo by walking out and touching her. She says he was amazing, Randy complimented him on his eyes being open, (seriously, am I the only one that finds that pathetic) and Stephen says even though he’s  a bit “Broadway”, he connected with the audience. I’m still bored. B

Georgia girl, Lauren sings Candle in the Wind. I’m briefly distracted by the amount of makeup they’ve put on the girl, but as soon as she starts to sing, I’m officially on team Lauren. Randy says its her best performance so far, Stephen calls it perfect, JLo says she’s amazing and says its the best of the night. I have had high expectations since her audition, and up until tonight, I’ve been disappointed. But the girl is back! A+

James McScreamer is doing Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting. Is there a class that rockers take that tells them all how to behave? Throw the microphone, check. Set the piano on fire, check. Stephen says he’s got a great rock voice, JLo says he makes her forget this is a competition, Randy loved the fact he’s enjoying himself. It must be hard to enjoy yourself, what with staying in a mansion, getting to go to movie premiers, being styled and dressed by professionals. How DOES a young man do it? You know I don’t love him, but I understand how you might. Based on singing and not whether or not he can keep his eyes open: A+.

Next in the spotlight, young Thia. She’s going to channel her emotions for her brother and sing Daniel. Sidebar: I would love to sit next to Jimmy Iovine on a long plane ride. I get the impression when the cameras are off and he’s hanging in the studio with his buds, he’s laying some serious snark. JLo likes it, Randy said it’s pitchy and too safe, and the 3rd judge offers the same stupid nothingness. STEPHEN, where have you gone? I think I dozed off. She’s getting a D.

Hanging by a thread, here’s CASEY.  He’s gotten rid of the mountain man beard, so that’s a good start. He sings Your Song, and NAILS it. JD calls it the best of the night, so take THAT JLo. Randy says the save was a good move, and that his performance was brilliant. Stephen says the last two notes alone were worth the save, JLo says she sleeps like a baby. Um. k. I loved it. What is with me? I’m like a High School Technology teacher who coaches on the side and needs all his players to do well for the team. Solid A!

Jacob is singing Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word. Jimmy says he’ll do fine if he doesn’t over dramatize it. Who, Jacob? As IF. Do I even have to report what Stephen says anymore? JLo gives props for the arrangement and says you don’t often hear that last note, and Randy says go to the “Jacob Spot” every time. It’s hard for me to like something that I don’t like which makes as much sense as anything Stephen says. Yeah, he gets an A too.

Last and maybe least, Haley. She’s singing Benny and the Jets, the theme from The Kings Speech. Has she always been this growly or are the reports of her dating Casey true? I’m going to say this is her best performance to date. Mainly cause I can’t remember any of the others. JLo says it was amazing and a great way to end the show, Randy says it’s the best performance of the NIGHT, wow, and Stephen says she’s sings sexy. He really is like the mentally challenged brother in the room. I didn’t love it, but I liked it. A good B.

I think the two going home are Naima and Thia. So, don’t be shy. What do YOU think?

Weight Watchers Wednesday

You know, I think I’ll do something different this week. Instead of concentrating on weight lost, I’m going to focus on how many pounds until my goal weight. But before I do that – here’s a couple of things of note.

1. Yummy Treat

These giant latte bars are deLISH and only 1 point (old system)/ 2 points (new system). They’re also over $4.00 dollars a box, BUT Publix has them on sale, buy 1 get 1, until Thursday. So basically, go today.

2. The other day I was looking at my stats and noticed that another blogger linked to me because of Weight Watchers Wednesdays. She ALSO does WWW, along with other useful posts, unlike certain other people we could name. Interestingly enough, she’s from Marietta and we have a mutual friend on Facebook. Stalk, much? So you might know her, it’s a small world. If you’re interested in checking out HER Wednesday posts, go to Curious Georgi.

3. ZERO point Mexican Soup Recipe

  • 2 cups fresh green beans, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 fresh garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 small zucchini, cubed
  • 1 cup tomatillo, chopped
  • 1 medium jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 14 ounces canned Mexican-style tomatoes, Mexican-style preferred
  • 1/2 medium poblano chile
  • 1 medium Spanish onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon fresh oregano
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 roasted red peppers, packed in water
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle chile in adobo
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 Put snap beans, garlic, zucchini, tomatillos, jalapeno, diced tomatoes, green chili pepper, onion, green pepper, cumin, oregano and vegetable broth into a large soup pot.
  • 2 Puree roasted peppers with chipotle in adobo sauce in a blender or food processor, and add to soup; stir to combine.
  • 3 Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, partly covered, for about 10 minutes.
  • 4 Stir in salt, lime juice and cilantro. Serve.
  • This looks like too much work for me to actually do, but if someone would like to make it for me, I’d eat it!

    Okay, so the scale. As of today, I’m 14 pounds from my goal weight. 14  pounds until I’m strutting my stuff in a tiny bikini. Why not, Kathy Griffin did it and she’s like, fifty!

    Looking good!

    Or I might just stick to shorts.

    So, how far are you from your goal weight?

    Interrupting the Regularly Scheduled Stupidity

    My dear friend, Katie, is in ICU with pneumonia and issues related to that. If you’re a praying person, please pray for her.

    If Katie had a blog, it would be full of relationship wisdom, love for Jesus, great cooking, and bridge tips. She’s a Hebrews 11 kind of person and I need her in my life.

    Here’s hoping she’s at the bridge table soon.

    It’s Monday, M’ladies!

    Guess who went to Medieval Times? You’ve not BEEN to Medieval Times? What, do you hate history or something? Well, for those of you who aren’t fortunate enough to live just over an hour and two major interstates away from the castle, let me enlighten you. It’s a CASTLE, in a mall, where you eat chicken and ribs with your bare hands the way they did it back in the day; and you drink your tomato soup straight from the bowl like manly men did before we got all fancy and high-falutin with our spoons.

    I brought Moon so I could write it off on my taxes as a history lesson. I taught her how to bang her pewter mug and yell, “WENCH, where’s my ale??” There’s a reason it’s not called the MedFriendly period.

    While we were waiting for our chicken so we could rip the flesh from it’s bones, the king invited us to partake in a fair. Knights from various far away lands came together to compete in a family-friendly battle to the DEATH. We were on team Red/Yellow.

    He was a strapping young lad who would not throw me a flower no matter how many times I stole Moon’s banner and frantically waved it at him.

    Which made his passing a little easier to take.

    Moon LOVED it, especially the horses. I enjoyed the show, but for 70 bucks, I would prefer not to throw up my chicken a few hours later.

    Because this kingdom was located in the Land of Retail, I did some shopping. And because the Land of Retail wasn’t created yesterday, there was tons of stuff for kids.

    M’lady’s underwear was showing a bit, but other than that, I thought she did well. Telling her it was a Water Walking Death Match really helped her attitude.

    Novel Thoughts

    Most of you know I’ve written a book and that last year I signed with an agent – from NEW YORK CITY. After signing me, she sent a list of suggested revisions, and I’ve spent the last few months reworking my story. I sent it off to her a couple of weeks ago and this is her response.

    Hi Lisa,

    Just wanted to let you know that I finally have responses from all the readers and it’s unanimous – your book is a total joy to read!  Everyone has really enjoyed it.  There are some places that need a little tightening, and some questions that I have for you, but I think you’ve done the major re-work.  So, many thanks for the good, hard work you’ve done so far.  I will have a letter detailing the remaining issues for you by end of next week.


    My book is a total joy to read! Now if it were only a total joy to rewrite.

    So now you know what’s happening in the exciting life of an unpublished author. Your day should go much smoother with that knowledge.

    THIS is an American Idol recap.

    Because, why not?

    Please welcome your judges! I love Jennifer but she looks a little “twee”, kittens. Randy has ink on his chin, he’s going to be so embarrassed tomorrow. Stephen Tyler is not letting being long in the tooth bother him – he just made it into a necklace.

    First up, Casey. The producer told him to chill and be a little more constrained. Unfortunately, he only applied the advice to his hair. He growled his way through the entire song. Stephen loves it, Jennifer says there’s no one else like him on the radio now, which is supposed to be encouraging, and Randy says only Casey can do Casey. Meh. Solid B.

    Thea tries to bring the heat. I can’t help feeling like I’m at a really good performing-arts school watching their year-end review. Does this girl have a soul? I think she needs to go out and live a little, make some bad choices, date some older men, get drunk and arrested, THEN try to sing. It might not help, but at least it will make her more relatable. At least to me. Jennifer says she scratched the surface and she’s going to have to pay for that, Randy was glad she’s stepping out, but she needs to dig deeper and move up, and Stephen is good. Him, yes, her – not so much. C.

    Here comes Jacob. In a nod to Motown, Jacob is being accompanied by a dead, white guitarist. He actually delivers on this song, prompting Stephen Tyler to rush the stage and sing Hallelujah. Randy says Barry Gordy is saying OMG, and Jennifer says he made us beg for the notes. Ryan invites a group of girls to give him a hug, bringing his lifelong total of female body contact moments to three. He’s not my style, but everyone else seems to love him. A-.

    Lauren comes out with confidence, looking like a million dollars. Zebra pelt is expensive! Stephen says she ripped it another beauty mark which makes about as much sense as anything else he’s ever said. Jennifer likes what she’s wearing and her neck movement. Umm, okay. Randy says she’s got her swagger on. Does anyone have anything to say about her singing? I think she’s still missing a spark, but her pitch was great. A-

    Give it up for Stephano. He says he grew up listening to Motown then shows a family photo with someone playing the accordion. Stephano proves he can sing. And he proves he can keep his eyes open. He just can’t do them at the same time. Who cares, he sounded great! Jennifer calls him baby and wants to talk, he’s fine, he can sing, now he needs to connect. Randy agrees there’s no emotions. Stephen mumbles something about ramps. Whatever, he had me at hello. A.

    Haley is singing You Really Got a Hold on Me. Jimmy Iovine tells her to “go for it.”. Wow, I can see why he’s so good at what he does. Has there ever been a more awkward staircase descent? I like her outfit, and she and Lauren obviously shared the hair straightener beforehand. Randy says the Haley he loved came roaring back YO, Stephen feels Randy and Haley and says she doesn’t look a day over fabulous. Good LORD, does he have a book of these hidden somewhere? I’ve never been one for book burning but I could be persuaded. Jennifer insults Stephen by comparing Haley’s voice to his. I think it’s her strongest performance so far. B+

    Scotty brings the country to Motown. I think he’s another contestant that could benefit from a harder life. I like my country singers to look like they’re one DUI away from serious jail time. He sings For Once in My Life and the crowd goes wild. Stephen compares him to the King of Country – Glenn Campbell. Jennifer says it wasn’t his strongest performance, and Randy says he’s taking chances by doing the same thing week after week. I think he’s here for the long haul. B+

    Pia sings another ballad. Joy. Well, she LOOKS the part of the star. I also like the fact that she’s one of the older contestants at 22.  See what living a little can do for a person? Jennifer recycles her criticism of Stephano and tells her to stomp around, Randy loves her falsetto but is over the ballad, Stephen checks his cliche book and says she’s the closest star in the American Idol universe. Another A, but if she does a ballad next week I’m dropping her a letter grade on principle.

    Paul says Motown music makes him move which is not a good sign. This song is one of my favorites – cause people DO say I’m the life of the party. Randy applauds the lack of dancing and says to bring the tender, Stephen compares him to Dillon and Willy Nelson, his dealers, and Jennifer says he’s the complete package. Ryan says he’s going for the “cougar” vote. It’s working. Love it – A.

    Naima goes vintage funk with some serious bell-bottoms, its her most conservative outfit yet. She sounds on-key and in an effort to make Paul look like a good dancer, breaks into an African boogie. Stephen says she’s E to the Z to the Twiddly-dee. Someone needs to edit his comments into a 30 second PSA against drugs. Much more effective than Just Say No. Jennifer says she’s an exciting performer who gave her goose bumps, and Randy is glad ALL of her showed up. My friend, Mantamy, says she’s fearless. I agree – B+

    James closes the show with a little Stevie Wonder. He’s finally found a song where screaming is appropriate. Jennifer says OMG over and over, and tells him he leaves her speechless which as we just saw is not true. Randy says the beginning was rough but it ended up being unbelievable. Stephen says it takes a little bit of crazy to make a difference in this world which could be debunked with one visit to my parent’s house. I think if I liked it, rock and rollers must be voting their fingers to the nub. Another A.

    So either JD slipped some Paxil into my potatoes, or everyone really stepped up their game this week.

    Bottom three – Thea, Naima and Haley, cause life ain’t fair. But I’d send Jacob home. He bores me.

    What do you think?

    Weight Watchers Wednesday

    I went to tennis this weekend and the ladies were ALL doing Weight Watchers. It’s the the coolest thing ever for the +40 crowd. One of them recommended Apple Straws by Sensible Portions.

    Yumola! And only 3 points for THIRTY-EIGHT. I love it when I can eat 38 of something and call it a diet. Available at your local Wal-Mart.

    Last week, I didn’t really want to weigh-in because I’d eaten my normal fare of Girl Scout cookies and take-out. But somehow I managed to lose TWO pounds. I lost two pounds while eating Girl Scout cookies! Please remember this next year when the Moon is selling them again.

    This week has been a roller coaster – one day it’s a single, cheese from Wendy’s with my mom, the next day it’s baked fish and asparagus. There’s a reason there’s no fast-food franchises built around fish and asparagus.

    So here I go, up on the scale. And this week’s total weight loss – plus .5!

    Awesome. I know I’ve said this before, but really, THIS is the week. The cookies are gone, and I’ve got weekend guests to entertain. What could go wrong?

    And how did you do?

    A Day in the Life

    Mondays are typically very busy for me. I get up early, work until 10 a.m., then go to a Moms in Touch meeting. Then back home for more work until it’s time to pick up MoonPie from school. If I’ve gotten enough work done, I go to her riding lessons, then off to bridge. Today, both Moms in Touch AND bridge got canceled, so I worked and worked and worked to finish everything on my “to do” list.

    Oh wait, no I didn’t. I just followed MP around all day with the camera.

    I call this, Moon and Friend.

    It was a tough day riding and MP kept having to do the same jump over and over and over. Afterward, her trainer complimented her attitude – no complaining, no whining, no crying. So we rewarded her with ice-cream.

    Moon and Maggie Moo’s.

    Then home to enjoy the day outside.

    MoonPie in my Grill.

    MoonPie’s Dismount. The crowd goes wild.

    Earth and Moon. Photographing kids tip of the day – lay them in the grass. That was also the tip yesterday.

    Red Moon Rising. Yeah, we dressed up like Little Red Riding Hood and walked over to the water department because their trees looked more like the forest on the way to Grandmother’s house. What about it?

    I think it was a better use of my time than working. But then again, what isn’t?

    Weekend Roundup

    Here’s a visual recap of my weekend, because sometimes words are not enough.

    Friday, I watched Baby SpitFire.

    “Watched” may be putting it too strongly.

    Maybe “hung out with till Granny took over” would be more realistic. Speaking of Granny –

    After some Saturday morning yard sales, she and Aunt Fay loaded up the truck and headed home.

    It was an unsuccessful trip; I can still see a spot on the floor. I’m pretty sure they could have stuffed another pillow under the seat.

    Saturday night we went to a party.

    Kathryn is going to India. Not that I care. I’m not jealous. But if anyone knows how to say, “I’ve got cooties” in Tamil, let me know. I’m hoping to equip her with a few choice phrases for the trip. Cooties is what they call the little kids in India. What did you think I meant?

    Awesome Abhi gave the team Bollywood dance lessons so they’d be ready to impress the kids.

    The MoonPie isn’t going this time, but since I’ve arranged her marriage with a handsome, Indian 5th grader, I thought she better learn some moves.

    Sunday I played tennis. My regular partner was out of town, so I played with Kristy. Kristy who happens to coach tennis and is 17 years younger than I am. I won’t get into who served aces and who spun second serves in at 17 miles per hour, it’s a team effort, and all that matters is that we won. And I didn’t pull anything.

    Not pulling anything is pretty much the hallmark of a successful weekend in my book.