Monthly Archives: August 2012

Elvis Rocks the Fireworks

A lotta shaking going on . . . due to a slow shutter speed.

As I’ve mentioned before, our Sugar Land Skeeters put on a great fireworks show.

Red-dy or not!

Our minor-league baseball team decided to shake things up last Friday night by making that bright display Elvis-themed. It was the Skeeters’ first game with former major-league ace Roger Clemens in uniform.

These remind me of spiders . . . red spiders.

Kind of like the King meets the Rocket. With majestic rockets bursting in air!

More spiders

The colorful, post-game display almost made up for us not seeing Clemens pitch.

Green-gold lighted streamers silhouette the scoreboard.


More greenish fireworks hover around the scoreboard

What made these Elvis-related? The nostalgic music accompanying them.

Love the rockets’ red, gold, and white glare!

There were no King of Rock and Roll sightings at the game. Maybe he left the field early.

That hound dog!!

Just Can’t Stop Believing

Ready for takeoff.

Once you take that leap of faith . . . .

Here we go!

Anything is possible!

Looking for a place to land.

No matter who . . . or what . . .

Make room!

You are!

One-Word Wednesday

There was an unusual spectator at Tom Bass Park during last night’s disc golf mini.


After determining that plastic didn’t look tasty, the big bird flies away.

The Rocket Rocks the Ballpark

Roger Clemens shares time in the dugout.

We enjoyed a bit of excitement in our small burg last weekend.

ESPN paid us a visit! Along with plenty of other national media. Little Sugar Land, 26 miles southwest of Houston, hit the big-time.

All because of our new minor-league baseball team. Oh, and some dude named Roger Clemens. Now all our opponents in the Atlantic League (as in the East Coast) actually know where in the world Sugar Land is.

Former all-star Scott Kazmir is about to deliver a pitch for the Skeeters.

When it was announced that the Rocket was going to pitch a few innings for the Skeeters last Saturday night, our community went wild. After all, the seven-time Cy Young Award winner and strikeout king posted a phenomenal major-league career.

Even though Clemens is 50 years old (a mere pup in my book), fans still believed he could deliver the goods and help our Skeeters win. Unfortunately, the game already was a sellout, thanks to the post-game performance of the Human Fireball (which actually used to be Clemens).

The Mister and I have an eight-game ticket plan. And, of course, with our luck, we had ducats for last Friday, the night before the Houston native’s appearance. But we knew we would at least see Clemens in the dugout, and that would have to suffice.

Sidebar: When I posted on Facebook that we had tried to get tickets for Saturday’s game for my younger son and a friend, one of my pals said she wasn’t going to use her pair. So the kid and Cody got to see an aging legend work three and a third innings, striking out two batters while allowing a mere hit. And the Skeeters won 1-0!

First baseman Aaron Bates starts to throw the ball around the horn after a putout.

Just as we expected, the Rocket was in the dugout during last Friday night’s game, watching what turned out to be an exciting contest with the Skeeters rallying for three runs in the eighth inning before dropping a 4-3 decision to the hated Bridgeport Bluefish. A cool breeze actually was blowing, and the Elvis-themed fireworks were much anticipated.

During the game I wondered what Clemens was thinking when he was faced with the reality that he was at a low-minors baseball game. Of course, there were lots of good plays made by both teams.

Those really are mighty big gloves!

But every half inning there’s some kind of fun and foolishness going on that’s never seen in the likes of Minute Maid Park or Yankee Stadium. Such as big-glove boxing.

Wonder who will win.

And the running lottery balls.

Play is about to start!

And, of course, my personal favorite, the race among the taco, pepper, and pitiful, always too-slow, never-winning cup.

Oh oh!

It’s enough to make a grown man who has pitched in the World Series and been an 11-time all-star ponder his place in the baseball universe.

Senior Struggles

My high school senior is home . . . and he’s mad.

I delayed writing a post today, because trying to get C.J. off to school to start his . . . gulp! . . . senior year was intensely stressful. Even though he’s been fine all summer, he had trouble sleeping last night and felt awful this morning.

Was the nightmare going to begin again?!?

Fortunately, C.J. had promised to give his friend RJ a ride, so off he went in the Fuze. My stomach was in knots all day, especially after he texted me a couple times that he was struggling to stay in class. All I could tell him was to breathe deeply and hang in there.

He returned home grumpy, as much because of chaos in the parking lot as his digestive problems. But he’s willing to see if his anxiety lessens this week, enabling him to continue at his high school.

I am praying that will be the case. And that tomorrow will be a better day for my beloved baby boy in this all-important senior year.

Saying Hi to Good, Old Sam Houston

SHSU shows pride in its longevity.

After seeing that the University of Houston has a bowling alley on campus, I thought that C.J. had locked in his college decision. How easy-breezy his last year in high school would be, as he contemplates staying close to home (albeit living in a dorm) and attending the Mister’s alma mater.

But then C.J.’s long-time pal (since kindergarten), RJ, made a fateful decision: He wants to attend Sam Houston State University to study criminal justice (it’s one of the top programs in the nation).

Sam Houston watches over his campus.

Stop the presses on that college application (as if my son has even started it)! It was time to see if another hat (preferably Stetson) needed to be thrown into the matriculation ring.

Which meant that yesterday we were on the road to Huntsville, home of the university named after the former governor of and senator from Texas (and two-time president of the Republic of Texas, as well as the governor of Tennessee). It’s about an hour and 40-minute drive from our house, which is far enough away for my son and close enough for me.

Students always know what time it is.

We had never stepped foot on campus before and weren’t sure what to expect. We discovered during our hour-plus tour of the buildings and several dorms that SHSU is a gem of a college! We both were impressed by the beautiful, well-maintained grounds (it’s very green), mix of old and new buildings, and possible majors.

Sidebar: C.J. is having trouble deciding what to major in. Am I one of the few people who knew at a young age what I wanted to be (a writer)? Which, of course, led me to get a journalism degree at the venerable University of Illinois.

An advising center JUST for my son!

As we drove home, my son and I discussed the pros and cons of U of H and Sam Houston State. Right now he’s rating them as even contenders for our dwindling college bucks, so he’ll apply to both of them and see what happens.

This was the one, pitiful photo I snapped of my C.J. Sigh!

One thing seems certain: My beloved baby boy will be some kind of cat next fall. But will it be a (UH) cougar or a (SHSU) bearkat?

Time will tell!

Howdy, Fuze!

Our 1999 Mercury Villager, driven by me and then the boys, has seen better days.

Out with the old . . .

My younger son is driving his dream car: A 2010 Ford Fusion.

. . . and in with the newish!

With our 2006 Toyota Highlander in San Antonio with our older son, and our ancient Mercury Villager becoming unreliable, the Mister and I opted to add yet another car to our fleet (the minivan will be going to a new home soon). So late last week we welcomed this 2010 Ford Fusion (only 33,000 miles) to our driveway for our younger son to drive.

Here’s hoping that the Fuze gets the kid safely everywhere he wants to go . . . especially to start his senior year of high school Monday!

One-Word Wednesday

It’s hard to hide among the melons at Walmart.


Our Household Downsizes Again

The bins and incidentals ready for the Odyssey and Highlander last Friday night.

Now there are three of us at home once more.

The kitchen has granite . . . unlike ours.

Last Saturday the Mister and I helped our older son move back to San Antonio in anticipation of his junior year (hard to believe!) at the University of Texas branch there. Even though he’s back at the same college, this starts a season of change for him.

My son picked out this cute frog shower curtain. He loves frogs. I don’t.

After two years he’s out of the dorm and in a new duplex, two-story apartment a mile or so from campus. It’s nicer than any place I’d ever lived in until we built our house. Downstairs is a lovely kitchen, living room with comfy couches, large guest bathroom, and . . . most important . . . a washer and dryer.

My big kid hated when the girls in the dorm monopolized all the laundry equipment, even going so far as taking his clothes out of the machines before he could. You would think that he would see that as an opportunity to actually meet and talk to the fairer sex, but he’s kind of a shy guy. Now he has ended the laundry war.

Upstairs my son and his roommate have their own bedrooms and bathrooms. Not much sharing going on with this duplex. That works well for my kid.

An apple a day helps keep my son healthy.

Speaking of roommates, my son will have a new one. Our neighbor Ben, his roomie of two years, will spend the fall semester studying in Italy. When he returns to San Antonio, he’ll have an apartment near UTSA’s downtown campus where all his classes are. I know my guy will really miss Ben, as will we.

We didn’t get a chance to meet Marcell, my #1 son’s pot-luck roommate, because he hadn’t fully moved in yet. But we’re looking forward to getting to know him during a future visit.

So now my son has a new place, roomie, and routine. To go along with 15 hours of business classes, none of which starts before 12:30 p.m. (definitely his idea).

My boy smiles . . . despite having bins behind him that need to be unpacked.

I hope he has an amazing school year filled with lots of learning, good grades, and wonderful experiences. We miss you, sweet boy!

“Timothy Green”: Fun Family Fare

Green socks for a “green” boy.

Here’s what you need to know about “The Odd Life of Timothy Green”: It’s a cute, PG movie that probably will make you cry.

Jim and Cindy Green yearn for a child.

The story takes place in Stanleyville, which is the pencil capital of the world. Jim (Joel Edgerton) and Cindy Green (Jennifer Garner) have reached the end of the line in their attempts to conceive a child. So they write down their hopes and dreams for a fantasy child, place the papers in a wooden box, and bury it in the garden. It rains that night . . . only in their yard.

Lo and behold, a muddy, 10-year-old boy (CJ Adams) appears in their house. His name is Timothy, and he has green leaves growing near his ankles. He’s everything his “parents” (he calls them Mom and Dad) wrote on the papers . . . but not always in the way you might think. Those were pleasantly unexpected twists.

Timothy and Joni like hanging out together.

Timothy manages to change the lives of everyone around him. He’s quite taken with Joni (Odeya Rush); their scenes together are some of the best in the movie.

This isn’t one of Disney’s finest films, but it’s definitely enjoyable, whether you see it in the theater or via DVD. I’d give it two and a half stars out of five.