Choose Life

H1, H2, & Big Boy Life on the (L)edge

Begun in the aftermath of Katrina, this blog was a way to keep family and friends updated as the family struggled to return to a semblance of normalcy. Now, more than four years later, the memories are still strong, the family is, to some extent, scattered. However, life did go on, and this is our story.

September 29, 2008


The Houston Herricks have power!!! No internet yet.

H1 flew in Friday afternoon. Saturday evening (after a l-o-o-o-o-n-g class in Fundamental Theology) we all went to D'Itali's Pizza for supper, sans Major Dad who was working. As usual the food was great, the company equally great, and a good time was had by all!

Sunday afternoon we gathered at Major Dad/DLG's for barbecue. The man works MAGIC with a spatula, I have to say! Burgers, beans , corn, sausage!! It was ALL GOOD!! This time H2 had to work, so we missed him, but we surely enjoyed watching the Saints put the hurts to the Niners!

Sadly, H1/DIL1 had to leave early Sunday afternoon for the drive back to Houston. Hopefully they will be back in a few weeks for the new bike festival here in NOLA. We haven't had a bike fest since Steel Pony went under after Katrina, so it's good to have someone trying to establish one again.

Today our command, once again, evolved (devolved?) into another. Since I went to work many moons ago after retiring from active Navy service, I've worked for the same people. When I went to work in 1991 it was for CNRF Code 10 (the IT dept of CNRF). That evolved into NRISO (Navy Reserve Information Systems Office), which became the ITC (Information Technology Center) which was renamed SPAWAR ITC and moved under Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR). Then we morphed into Spawar Systems Center New Orleans (SSC NOLA) and today we are SPAWAR Systems Center Atlantic, New Orleans Office. Still the same people doing the same work. Kind of brings to mind the old saw, "In lieu of progress, reorganize." And "she who must be obeyed" is now the queen bee of the hive! What do you think of that, Big J??? Wish you were still here? I think NOT!!

That's about it for now. Until next time, take care and God bless!!

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September 24, 2008


The well seems to have run dry as far as blogging of late is concerned. But, since Big J has seen fit to chide me for my silence, I will attempt a posting.

H1/DIL1 are still without power in Houston, although both were able to return to work on Tuesday. Still, H1 insisted that DIL1 come to NOLA and work out of the NOLA office until power is restored, so she arrived here Thursday evening.

Molly-moo is officialy two! Her birthday was Monday and we all gathered for cake and ice cream. She was cute as a button as she opened presents, walked around hugging her stuffed toys, and eating H2's cake with him.

*continued from yesterday*
DLG has some thoughts about Molly turning two, as well as some thoughts on Ian and those teenage years. You might also notice that H1 will be in NOLA for the weekend, which should bring a smile to the face of DIL1!!

I continue to struggle with reading assignments for my Theology classes. Gustav and Ike resulted in the rescheduling of two classes which effectively eliminated the extra week between classes that was in the original schedule. Still, the classes are VERY interesting. I'm enjoying them immensely.

This has been quite a summer as far as our Ugandan friends is concerned. We've seen Fr. Deo several times as he has passed through NOLA on several occasions in between mission appeals around the country. Also, Fr. Daniel is visiting friends in NOLA so we've taken him to dinner twice. And Fr. Andrew, who is also in the U.S. doing mission appeals will be in NOLA in the next week or so, and we hope to see him as well.

One of our "kids" from Uganda, Michael, has entered a seminary in Tanzania. Another, Constant, is now in a teacher's college in Uganda. It is good to see them both doing well. Cissy is still in what is the equivalent of high school, and struggling. Please keep her in your prayers. Her future is not terribly bright if she doesn't succeed in her studies.

We're having several days of really beautiful weather, with lots of sunshine, high's in lower to mid 80s and lows around 70. Near perfect weather for two-wheeling around town.

That's about all I've got for now. Take care. God loves you!

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September 14, 2008


H1/DIL1 are now without electricity and, I presume, other utilities as well. Although they didn't experience any flooding or wind damage themselves, a neighbor in their apartment complex move her car from her designated parking place to avoid any flooding (which didn't happen) only to have a tree blow down on it.

We spoke with H1/DIL1 yesterday (Saturday) evening and they were ok. They had charged their laptop batteries the night before and were watching DVDs. H1 cooked DIL1 a birthday supper. What a way to spend your birthday!! Good thing he has a gas grill and a full propane tank.

The Galveston-Houston area has been devastated, along with many Louisiana parishes. It looks as if we didn't "dodge the bullet" as well as we had thought, as St. Bernard, Plaquemines, St. Tammany, Terrebone, and other LA parishes took major, unexpected hits off of Ike. The storm surge cut a much wider swath than was anticipated, I think. Many areas that had only recently regained power from Gustav lost it again.

Please keep H1/DIL1, and all those affected by Gustav and Ike in your prayers!

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September 12, 2008


H1/DIL1 have elected to "Hunker Down" and ride out the storm. We're praying that they don't lose power or any other utilities, at least not for any great length of time. Here in Louisiana we still have folks without power since Gustav, and some are now without power because of Ike!

We're getting a bit of rain and gusting winds as the outer bands of Ike go through. So far it's been an interesting day. This morning we drove Ian to school and Kenny to work, on our way to work. On the way Kenny got a call from Ellie saying that all the schools were closed. While trying to check it out, we continued to Ian's high school, where a line of cars were dropping their sons off, so we also dropped off Ian. About an hour later Linda got a call that Major Dad was picking up both Ian and BB from school, as all the Archdiocesan schools were closed, per their website. Arrrgghhhh!!

A short time after lunch (an excellent extra cheese pizza at Reginelli's on Harrison Blvd) we received an email from our Commanding Officer that all SSC NOLA government employees were to go home to avoid possible flooding and downed trees and power outages.

Now we're at home, the wind is whistling down the alleyway between the houses, the trees are whipping in the wind, but no rain to speak of so far.

H1 posted an update about their situation. So far, so good.

All in all, life is good for the Southern Herrick clan. We pray that the situation continues.

BTW, I didn't mention earlier, but S2 is coming for a visit in December!! We are thrilled to no end!!

Last but not least, while in H-town for G-man I got to ride one of these!! It was AWESOME!!! Oh, Yeah!!!

Take care, one and all. God bless.

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September 6, 2008


We are home, once again! We returned Thursday, taking only eight hours to get home, rather than the 12 it took to get to Houston last Satruday.

Our homes are fine. All the food in the refrigerator and freezer was ok. The DVR even taped "Closer" Monday night, so we didn't miss an episode!

One of the pear trees is leaning quite a bit, so I'll have to work on that to give it better foundation, but they are all five standing.

The entire NOLA family is now back. Last night we cooked burgers and hot dogs and sausage so DLG and kids wouldn't have to deal with dinner when they arrived late yesterday evening.

Wednesday evening in Houston, we decided to go to Pappassito's for dinner. As we're driving down the 6-lane road, in the center lane, I notice a cop car coming up behind me with his lights flashing. I move over a lane to let him pass (although I didn't think he would) and he moved over behind me. Sigh. I knew I wasn't speeding, all my lights were working, so what gives? I pulled over into the next available parking lot and sat with window rolled down. The cop came over and asked if I knew why he had stopped me. I said, "No". He said that he had noticed I didn't have a front license plate (Texas does, Louisiana does not) and couldn't tell what kind of plate I had in the back. Right. I gave him my driver's license when he asked for it, then we all sat while he went back to his police cruiser and sat down inside and probably ran my license, hoping for some outstanding warrant. Finally he came back, handed it to me and said, "Have a nice trip HOME". Subtle, huh?

At least it gave us something to talk about at dinner besides Gustav and wondering how the return to NOLA would be. Thanks for that, I guess.

And, thanks to all for prayers, and emails, and phonecalls checking on our safety and whereabouts. God bless!!

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September 2, 2008


IT appears that we did ok with Gustav. Major Dad called yesterday to say that he passed by our homes and they were ok. Even the Cleveland pear trees that we planted were still standing.

H2 suggested checking on the electricity at home by calling the house to see if the answering machine picked up. I called and got the answering machine!!

Our plans at this time are to remain in Houston for another day or so to allow some of the returning traffic to lighten up, and for some of the stores and gas stations to reopen.

Now we start keeping a watchful eye on "Ike".

Once again, our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has been praying for our safety.

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September 1, 2008


Sitting in a rented room, in a strange city, on a Monday morning, watching the hurricane batter New Orleans on network television. Eerie. Here in Houston the sun is shining, the sky is blue. Three years ago in Orlando the sun was shining and the sky was blue.

Linda is heading to Houston from Virginia. She should arrive between 2:30 and 3:00.

Next we all just sit and wait and watch and wonder what we'll be returning home to in the next day or two.

Thanks to everyone who has been praying for ours and everyone else's safety.

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