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.

May 31, 2009


Linda has been wanting another bogenvia plant, and her sister and brother-in-law gave us the monetary gift of one for our anniversay, so after church we decided we would go to a nursery in Metairie and get one. This great eatery, Central American Restaurant is close by, so we decided to lunch there. It was a toss-up between sushi and central american, but this was closer, and I'd been craving it for several weeks. We've gone there on several occasions with the family, but this time it was just Linda and me. The food was, as usual, outstanding, and we left stuffed! When I was paying the bill, the waitress commented, "Your family was here earlier." Who-da thought it? Turns out Major Dad, DLG and family met KenEllie for lunch there a little bit before we got there. It really is a great restaurant! Sorry we missed everyone.

The afternoon was a success, however. We bought the plant (THANKS, PAT and BILL!!!), then picked up snowballs for Ian, BB, Molly-moo, Linda and I, and stopped by DLG's for a bit. Good times!

Tomorrow is brother Bill's birthday, so I want to wish him a very Happy Birthday!!! Bill, here is a birthday wish just for you!!
Wishing you many, many more!!!

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May 28, 2009

R Wii Really That OLD????

When we first started attending Holy Name of Mary parish, oh so many years ago, we used to see a family there every Sunday. Father, mother (blonde), and two kids (blonde) maybe 3 and 5 years old. As time went on, a baby was born, then another and another. All blonde as all get out! Over the years we just referred to them as "the blonde family". Wasn't it a surprise when Linda and I went to BB's grandparents day and discovered that her teacher is the "blonde mom"!! This morning, BB tells Linda that Mrs. M (blonde mom) has been out all week so she could attend her son's graduation from "middle" school. DLG informed us that the son is graduating from MEDICAL school!! Oh... My... God... are we really that old??? They were so young and cute just a few years ago (or so it seems!!!).

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May 24, 2009


May we never forget nor cease to appreciate the sacrifices given by so many to keep us free!

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May 18, 2009


What a weekend!!! I'm getting too old for this!

Wednesday evening saw the arrival of the H2GF's parents, Bob and Irma, who came in for H2's graduation ceremony.

Thursday Linda and I spent some time with B&I and H2GF, starting with a late breakfast at IHOP. Then we ran errands in preparation for the next day's festivities.

Friday began bright and early with the badge pinning ceremony in front of Tulane University's McAllister Auditorium at 8am. The day was sunny and HOT, and the recruits were dressed in their long-sleeved shirts and ties, with bullet proof vests underneath. It had to be miserable!! Then at 9 the graduation ceremony began inside the auditorium. The ceremony lasted about 1 1/2 hours. Mayor Nagin and Councilwoman Cynthia Hedges-Morrell spoke. H2's friend Kenelly gave an address representing Recruit class 163 that was excellent!

After graduation Linda and I, H2, H2GF and B&I tried to go to lunch together, but after Corky's turned out to be closed for remodeling, Outback closed until 4PM, Linda and I headed home to finish up pre-crawfish boil errands. Unfortunately, the heat of the morning ceremonies and the lack of anything to eat triggered an especially severe migraine which took me out of commission for several hours.

The life savers that afternoon were Linda, H1/DIL1, Big Boy, and Major Dad. Linda and H1/DIL1 picked up all the slack and ran errands, picked up the crawfish (158 pounds!!) and helped with setup and preparations. Big Boy (Justin) and Major Dad boiled the mudbugs, which were perfection!!

Several of the newly sworn in officers were in attendance and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. It was especially great to have the whole family, H1/DIL1, H2/H2GF, KenEllie, Major Dad/DLG and family all together.

At one point in the evening, H2 surprised H2GF by dropping down on one knee and whipping out a little white jewelry box which contained an engagement ring. He asked her to marry him, and after a few moments of shock, surprise, tears welling up, she said "Yes"... well, technically she said, "Si", but you get the drift.

Saturday noon I had the privilege of baptizing little Charlie Dustin Farina, KenEllie's nephew. Then I had preaching duty at 5 o'clock Mass. After Mass we all (Linda and I, H1/DIL1, H2/H2F (fiancé, formerly GF), B&I, DLG and Major Dad, Ian, BB and Molly-moo went to Fujihana's for hibachi and sushi, along with a good bit of plum wine and hot saki!! Excellent!!

Sunday we said goodbye to B&I as they headed back home to TX. I preached again at 8am Mass. After Mass Linda and I, H2/H2F, and H1/DIL1 went to IHOP for breakfast, after which we had to say goodbye to H1/DIL1 as they, too, headed home to TX. At noon, another baptism, then the weekend was pretty much over.

Thank God for Mondays!! H2 is currently spending his first day on the job. I'm looking forward to getting home to hear how it went.

Thanks to everyone for their support, kind words, and best wishes for H2 and H2F. I'm sure I'll be keeping everyone posted as things progress...

In the mean time, may God continue to bless you all.

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May 17, 2009



She Said "Si"!!!!

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May 11, 2009


Ian is in the hospital for observation for 24 hours. As some of you may know he injured his leg last weekend. He went back for a follow up today and ended up being admitted. Apparently he could need surgery. In any case, I am asking for prayers that he does not need surgery, and that he gets better quickly.

Thanks, in advance, for your prayers!!

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Just thought I'd keep on with DIL1's theme:

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May 8, 2009


This from Fr. Dwight Longenecker:

"We celebrate Mary in May because May reminds us of Mary. The freshness, the deep down things are so alive in Mary and in May. The trees blooming and in bud, the birds chasing each other around because they are in love, the blue sky, the showers, the wet alive earth in Spring. Like Mary and May it is all alive and radiant and abundant and full of life and full of grace."

He goes on to say,

"The prayer for the May crowning says that Mary is our destiny. She shows us what we should be, shows us what we could be, shows us what we shall be if we simply follow the way, the truth and life of her Son.

Against all this the worldly old world seems so sordid and swampy and smelly and small. What, shall we indulge in the sots and thralls of lust? When we could exalt instead in the purity and power of Mary and her Son? Shall we engage ourselves in flickering screens with shallow images when we can walk in the open air and love all that is abundant in life? Shall we plunge needles in our arms, powders up our nose and bottles to our throat for cheap and degrading pleasures when we have Mary and May and all that is abundant and free and pure and radiant and good and finally full of everlasting life?

This is Catholicism. It is real. It is full. It is alive. It is abundant. It is hilarious and free and great and good.

For me... humbly trying to follow the Master, all else is illusion."

Wish I'd said that!


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May 6, 2009

9 and a Wake-Up!*

*(including today)

We're getting close people!!!

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May 5, 2009


Linda made some delicious stuffed green chile peppers a few days ago. We also cooked some beans in our new bean pot. DEE-licious!! Here's a look...

Of course, we only found out afterward that we were supposed to brown the chiles and peel off the skin so the flour would stick better. Oh, well, next time.

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May 1, 2009


Is this a "must have" for Gisselle?

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I would be remiss if I didn't mention that BB was absolutely beautiful at her First Communion last Saturday! She was so angelic!

H2, after being tased (tazed?) said it was the worst thing he'd ever experienced and he never wanted to do it again. That was, of couse, before he got "OC" (Oleoresin Capsicum)or Pepper sprayed yesterday. THAT was the worst, because the taser only lasted 5 long seconds... the spray lasted... well... a lot longer!! At least he's on the down side now. All the really tough stuff is behind him as far as the Academy goes. Only two more weeks until his graduation!! We are all so proud of him!

I am SUPER HAPPY to announce that H1/DIL1 will have their marriage "blessed", or "convalidated", on June 27th at Holy Name of Mary Church, with yours truly doing the honors of being the Church's witness to their sacramental exchange of vows. Please pray for them in a special way.

Tomorrow is my last class for the semester!! I thought it would never arrive, but it has, and I am SO relieved! At this point I don't care what my grade is, as long as I don't have to go to another class!!

Now go and enjoy the weekend. God bless!!!

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