The Corner That Changed the World.

Meg knows she hasn’t written in awhile, she has been busy trying to bond with her new town and state. Meg would like to thank Twisted Susan for encouraging her each time she ventures from the house and tries something new, because the Lone Star state can be just *that*. Lone.

Anyway, Meg was like Debbie the other day, and did Dallas!

Ha! Not really that way. But she did spend part of her day on the sixth floor of the Texas Book Repository staring out the window, in the exact spot where Lee Harvey Oswald shot JFK.

In a million years Meg would not have imagined visiting this spot, never mind living in Texas. But there she was, staring out the window and looking down at the grassy knoll.

Here’s the thing. Meg remembers November 23rd vividly. She can picture her mother and grandmother sobbing in the kitchen of the shitty apartment they lived in. She remembers the interminable four days of television, because all she wanted to do was watch Huckleberry Hound, not a funeral. Meg sat on the floor playing with her Jackie and Caroline paper dolls, dressing and undressing them in their elegant little outfits, staring at the TV.

Meg was all of five years old as she watched world events unfold. It was like watching the cheap but fascinating shards of glass in a cardboard kaleidoscope; there was a jumble of film clips, bold black newspaper headlines, and Walter Cronkite’s deep voice. She remembers the serene couple in the official inauguration plate staring down at her from the living room wall. She somberly watched little kids her own age, attending their Dad’s funeral on TV.

That day Meg stepped over a threshold, the one where she was no longer an innocent little kid, but an strangely wise pre-schooler.

In the months that ensued, there were giant color photos in LIFE magazine, and many hefty coffee table books that recounted the whole ordeal. It did seem the world would never be the same, and the event imprinted itself, becoming part of the collective unconscious of Meg’s generation.

And in one tiny corner in Dallas, the world was turned on it’s axis.


I Can’t Help Myself Friday. Where I Just Let Everyone Talk.

Well, Meg guesses she must talk as well. Jesus H. Christ, what a week. She finally is letting the f-bombs fly, showing some edginess, and done saying “oh my stars” when she means “what the fuck“? Cause really, that is what she means. My city is on lockdown as they corner a teenage terrorist. What the f?

It’s good to know Batman was on standby for Boston:

It did Meg good to see the Yankees fan’s singing “Sweet Caroline” which still confusingly proves NOT to be written about Caroline Kennedy, but soldiers on as the 7th inning rally song for the Red Sox:

It made her NHL heart even more bright to hear this:

I’m so proud I didn’t see anyone holding a beer. Usually I would be. Bet you didn’t know I as a hockey fan? I love a good check into the boards.

Thanks, fake husband JOn Stewart for well deserved kudos.

Stand by and pray for everyone this morning.


When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going.

They also get pissed. F**cking pissed.

Meg missed Patriot’s Day for the first time in her life, because she was 2000 miles away in Texas. She had planned to check in on Boston.com to see what was going on with the Boston Marathon, which she religiously watched every April. Also, she needed to scope out the Red Sox score for the Monday matinee game, lastly, she needed to make sure Minutemen won again in Concord, as they re-enacted the famous 1775 battle at the Old North Bridge. (Where they kicked British ass, of course.)

Meg had the privilege of growing up in the backyard of the American Revolution. History abounded everywhere; she could drive a few short miles to see the scenes of famous Revolutionary War battles, stand where Paul Revere rode his horse, and quietly walk amongst the graves of authors like Emerson, Thoreau and Hawthorne. A few miles further an there was an entire city at her feet, abundant in culture; a melting pot of distinct and unique neighborhoods. One full of sports fanatics, college students, young families and curious tourists.

One where you could always count on a native ask you:

“Hi, howahya doin’?”

The last thing she expected to see was an explosion and the streets covered with blood.

Patriot’s Day was always a special day. It was festive because spring (if we were lucky) had just arrived. Daffodils would beckon, the Public Garden had magnolia’s in bloom, the Swan Boats would make their first appearance:

Little Red Sox fans like these two eagerly awaited Opening Day at Fenway:

The North End would be packed with people carbo loading:

And you would wander back to your car by the trusty light of the Custom House Tower:

And accidentally wind up in a fine Irish bar.

I am hard pressed to even comprehend what I am reading this morning. A pint-sized 8 year old boy, dead. You killed a little kid, asshole. The one who’s Holy First Communion photo is on-line. You blew the legs off of two BROTHERS. You left a woman lifeless in the street with a reporter looking down on her:

When the first boom shattered the bliss and the haze of white smoke washed over the finish line, I could see in the eyes of the woman what had happened. She wasn’t breathing. She wasn’t moving. Her eyes appeared lifeless as she lay beside the metal barriers on the sidewalk, where dozens of people were sprawled on the concrete, their limbs mangled, blood and broken glass everywhere.

David Abel, The Boston Globe

All I know, is Bostonians came to the rescue. Medical personnel there for the Marathon ran towards the victims, and got them to world class hospitals. Random strangers created Google spreadsheets and locators so you could track loved ones or offer up your home if you happened to be stranded in the city. Rides and money were extended, as well as food and clothing, and more importantly, hugs and support.

You go Boston. Don’t let some evil a-hole wreck the day that is our pride and joy.

And keep lighting the city up like this.


Friday DIY. How to Fake People Out.

Mama Kat get sent out a slew of ideas this past week, so today I’ve decided to get crafty and show you how to fake out any guest visiting your home with your newly found skills as a talented gardener!

I have this cute collection of McCoy and Weller pots. They are adorable and colorful, but here’s the thing. I kill EVERYTHING
I put in them. I am generally good with plants; so I’m not sure what the deal is? Maybe pottery and plants life don’t really mix, but I got sick of dead ivy greeting me. Crunchy plants = not good.

Recently I took a trip to California and was inspired by some plants I saw at a gorgeous garden center:

Sweet, no?

So I decided this would be perfect for my pots, except for one thing:

Shhh! My plants are fake!

Here’s how I did it:

Pop some styrofoam peanuts into the pots, because you always have a million of them like I do. (Actually, they are awesome for
real outdoor gardening and drainage in garden pots)

Arrange the plants like this:

Add some sheet moss to cover up the peanuts:

And proudly display:

Trust me ladies, it’s the easiest DIY spring craft you will ever do.


Gettin’ Out of The House!

Meg isn’t all about the house and contractors, she’s been expanding her horizons with various activities of a cultural nature.

She visited the Dallas Arboretum last week, which was flourishing with blooms of every kind:

Orange flowers are one of Meg’s new faves. She mixes it with purple and white and loves the combination.

Lily pads usually mean my nemesis the frog is nearby. Reptiles and amphibians do not thrill Meg, ever since she had to catch her own frog out of the high school pond. And then dissect it. (No, I am NOT kidding.)

Ahh… my kind of frog!

Meg completely covets this wisteria vine. It made her feel like she was sitting under a vineyard arbor, without the messy grapes.

The other event the family attended was the Deep Ellum Arts Festival. It was really more about food, music and drinks, as the arts sections was weak, unless you enjoy oil paintings of KISS. Yes, Gene Simmons KISS. Why someone would want that hanging in their living room, she has no idea. Get some taste, poeple.

Anyway, it was a cool and funky neighborhood. I did not see any Cadillac Escalades, as this well appointed artwork ensured none of those big cars would be in the way:

Meg pounced on this concession and had the best F*()%& pizza she has eaten since she left Boston. Now she has to stalk a mobile pizza oven on Facebook to find out where they will be every weekend.


Get your ice cream!

It’s good to know you can get Girl Scout cookies anywhere:

And there is never a lack of beer, apparently:

The summer line-up is painted on the side of the venue! How cool is that?

This guy named Brandon played really good music. He kind of reminded Meg of a young Chris Issac.

On the other hand, there was this unknown singer channeling Keith (aka, Keef, right Zadge?) Richards?

He wasn’t so good, but he was having fun and was giving his CD’s away for whatever donation you wanted to pony up.

Then there was more food, including some Serious Pizza:

Told you it was serious.

All in all it was a fun day. Meg enjoyed hanging in a real hood, it was relaxing and as the family left as sunset, they knew they’d be back in Deep Ellum soon.

It’s where things are real.


Are You There God?

It’s me, Margaret.

Did you all read the Judy Blume book, “Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret?” This week Mama Kat asked us to reminisce about 7th grade and a memory we had.

Mine was certainly this classic teen angst book; best encapsulated like this:

Margaret confronts many pre-teen female issues, such as buying her first bra, having her first period, coping with belted sanitary napkins*, jealousy towards another girl who has developed a womanly figure earlier than other girls, liking boys, and whether to voice her opinion if it differs from those of her friends.

In seventh grade, all the students at Emerson Junior High had block of time called “homeroom”, which consisted of a stuffy room with 30 or so kids grouped together in alphabetical order. Each and every day you plopped your coat and books into this classroom, and got your lunchtime break to grab your brown bag and gab with your part of the alphabet. My homeroom consisted of A through D, so I sat in the last seat of homeroom, along with other A-D peeps Karen, Laura, and Betty Ann.

In 7th grade, one of us got a hold of the beloved Judy Blume book, and every day we passed the book around and read a chapter. I know this must seem positively medieval to some of you young ones, but that was how things rolled. Each of us would anxiously read a chapter and pass it to the next person like a hot potato, eager to share what we thought about it. I think we could actually claim the first known form of book club! Shit, I wish I had thought ahead in those days.

Anyway, the book was precisely what we were all going through in seventh grade. Some us us had training bras, some had the full-fledged cups. (I don’t ever remember having training wheels for mine, personally). We all related to being liked one day, and out of the clique the next. We cruised the aisles of CVS for the latest cosmetics, and swooned over Herbal Essence shampoo, which I think has been repurposed into Dawn dishwashing liquid.

I had to start the “belted sanitary napkin” reference above, because GOD HELP ME there was no such thing as an adhesive maxi-wing in the 70’s. Never mind turncoat friends, acne and awkward Friday night dances, this was truly the most tortuous experience one could go though.

And at least we had Judy Blume to confirm we weren’t crazy. And the book is still on Amazon for millions of junior high readers to connect with.

I think I could sum up the seventh grade in this word cloud

Blue eyeshadow, anyone?