Le Diner en Blanc New Orleans

 

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The worldwide phenomenon that began 25 years ago in Paris has finally hit the Big Easy. It’s part flash mob, part picnic, part gourmet and full fun and festivity.

It’s Le Diner en Blanc!

The impromptu picnic where you bring your own food and wine, you meet a lot of new people, you dance the night away and you actually have to bring your own table and chairs.

Yeah, I know it sounds like a lot of work. It’s  totally worth the effort though.

New Orleans hosted its second Le Diner en Blanc last Saturday  at the Hyatt Regency Grand Ballroom.

That wasn’t the intended location.

We were supposed to be along Bayou St.John but the weather didn’t allow for that to happen.
It rained cats and dogs the night before and if we would have been on the Bayou, it would have turned into

Le Diner en Mud.
Not too cool since we had to attend the gathering dressed in all white.

Now, I know that this is NEW ORLEANS and we’re supposed to be wayyyy too laid back to want to attend some “she-she-poo-poo” sort of thing.
Especially when we  have beaucoup festivals that we can go to for free…white linen night being one of them.
But really!
This IS New Orleans and if there’s another opportunity for us to kick back with friends  and eat a fantastic meal while listening to Big Sam’s Funky Nation bring the house down,

this born and bred New Orleanian will be all up in it!

And with over four thousand people on the waiting list hoping to get an invitation and 1600 able to get the coveted invite…

it seems to be the hottest ticket going around.

The event was lovely.

This was my first year attending. I was on the waiting list hoping to get an invite and it just so happened that a fellow Nyx Sister was already a member so, she sponsored me.

Once that happened, I received an invite immediately.
And because I attended the event, I am now a member and will receive an invite every year.

Getting the invite doesn’t mean you’ll get to go every year though. There’s a cap on how many people  attend the event so  if you receive an invite and really want to go, register early.

We had to meet at our  rendezvous spot for 6pm. That’s where the buses picked us up and brought us to the secret place of the picnic.

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We didn’t know where we were going until the last minute.

Let me rephrase that.

Uhhh, I didn’t know where we were going until the buses pulled up.

Once there, we had a bit of trekking to do. We had to get to the 2nd floor.

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Yeah, I know this looks very congested…but it beats being out there in the mud in white.

Once we were in the ballroom, everyone began setting up their tables.

Someone actually got a pic of me doing just that.

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Folks began decking out their tables. As you can see, mine is already decked. We had to move over a bit…not a problem.

My table turned out pretty nice.

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A lot of people were taking pictures of it. That’s always a good sign..lol

One of my dear friends gifted me with this beautiful cake she created. And talk about delicious!

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Once everyone had their tables set up,

it was on.

Big Sam’s  Funky Nation  had everyone jamming while we dined and danced the night away.

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Big Sam

The infamous napkin wave to begin the dinner.

The infamous napkin wave to begin the dinner.

 

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NOLA Elegance

 

So many people had beautiful tables.

So many people had beautiful tables.

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A lot of folks were going all out with their attire!  I loved it!

A lot of folks were going all out with their attire!
I loved it!

 

Moi with my Nyx Sister

Moi with my Nyx Sister

 

Life is for the living!

Life is for the living!

Just another great event in the Crescent City!

And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Is This Thing On?

Helllooooooooo!

I’m back!
Finally!
My computer bit the dust and it took me a minute to get around getting a new one.

Actually, the hubby got tired of me not blogging and gave me a new computer and camera for Mother’s Day.

How sweet is that?!

Annnnd… I can see the letters on this darned computer!!

This must be a computer for geriatric eyes…lol

I really considered putting this ole’ blog to rest. It was more than missing mojo, it just wasn’t fun anymore. It started to feel like work. At first I thought it was because I was running out of topics to blog about.
Then I realized, it was more than that.

I had begun to edit myself.

That’s something I did not do when I started blogging 6 years ago.
I just wrote whatever I wanted and it felt great.

Somewhere along the way, I began editing my material. And I know that as bloggers, we don’t put everything out into the universe but, I found myself not blogging about things I would have otherwise told you all about.
I think it’s because a few people who I used to work with found my blog.  I didn’t want to give up too much information about myself (which is weird because my brother reads my blog and knows more about me than anyone.)
However, I never wanted any information that I put on here about myself (or anything that wasn’t NOLA related) to suddenly end up being “water cooler gossip” and so I began the editing process.

Well…no more of that dumb shit.

Not only was it blocking my blogging flow, I wasn’t being true to who I really am.
I think a lot of people who read my blog, come around because the ole’ bayoucreole just lays it on the line…at least I try to.
Heck, you all know what happened when I lost my virginity so, it’s safe to say…you all know a lot about me…lol

And I love that.

Hopefully, this blog will still be in the universe long after I’m gone.

So…what’s the dillio?

Well, the city has been busy. We’re in the midst of festival season. I went to the French Quarter Fest but, I didn’t take any pics because I knew I wouldn’t be blogging it. The Jazz Fest ended last weekend. I didn’t go this year…and the weather was beautiful the entire fest.  Go figure. It usually rains, but because I didn’t go…clear skies.

Saturday, I attended a fairly new event in the city, Le Diner en Blanc.

It’s  like a flash mob picnic in white. This was its second year in NOLA, ya’ll know I’m going to tell you all about it!

This weekend is Bayou Boogaloo!

I love this event!

Sitting along the Bayou…eating,drinking and listening to great music…that’s me all day!

The following weekend is The Food and Wine Experience.

I didn’t go last year… I’m ready to go this year though!!

I’ll be blogging’em  so, stay tuned!

What else I got?

OH!

The beginning stage of Mardi Gras has begun. The part where members of carnival krewes renew their membership and/or invite new members into the krewe. I’ve renewed my membership with Nyx!

Yay!

I think the krewe will hit around 1500 members this year.

That’s a lot of women riding!

Mardi Gras is my favorite time of  year in the city…can’t wait for it to roll around.

Y’all know I love me some king cake…lol

And two new carnival krewes are trying to get permits to roll in 2015…both of them are all female krewes. The Mystic Krewe of Femme Fatale and the Krewe of Athena. It’s going to be interesting to see if they get a permit to hit the streets. And, I’m really curious to see how these two krewes are going to be compared to the other all female krewes.

One of them is about to create history as the first all female, majority black krewe. Zulu is majority black, but it’s all men. There has never been one with all females.The more I think about it,The Mystic Krewe of Femme Fatale is actually the first since they were established last year and they’ve already held their inauguration gala. They just need to get a permit to roll.

I’m loving the empty nest syndrome….NOW.

Although, I can’t lie, it took me a hot minute to get used to it. I was so accustomed to ripping and running with my kids that when I didn’t have to do it anymore, I went through some emotional stuff. The house is quiet and that in itself took some adjusting to. Also, I had to adjust my mother role to becoming more of a mentor and advisor than the person calling all the shots cuz…

they grown now y’all! *sniff,sniff*

YellowJacket will be 20 in 2 months and PurpleKnight will be 22 this week.

Lawd, where did the time go?

I think we’ve all reached the point where we can co-exist without driving each other batty.

It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be though. I fully appreciate what my mom went through each time one of us left the nest.

Ok, what else?

Y’all know how I love my lil birdies right? I still have parrots and blue jays coming in the yard.

But, did I tell y’all that I have BALD EAGLES around the corner from me?!!

Yep! And they mated and so, I have babies…well, if you can call those huge big birds babies…lol

The nest has been around for while but, once I began researching  eagles and watching eagles nests throughout the nation via webcams, I noticed that, all the eagles were laying eggs and the eggs were hatching around the same time…March and April. So,I decided to check to see if I could spot a chick or two in the nest by me. At first I couldn’t but, when the hubby purchased a camera for me and I was able to get a fantastic view of the nest and I was able to spot the lil bugger!

baby eagle There are actually two chicks in the nest,

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Here’s a pic of mom and dad keeping watch and the babies are in the nest,

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She was looking dead at me...daring me to get closer...lol I didn't.

She was looking dead at me…daring me to get closer…lol I didn’t.

Having an eagle’s nest around the corner from the house is pretty darned amazing. Don’t cha think? Although, I can see why they picked the location. I’m one mile away from Lake Pontchartrain  and Industrial Canal is right here as well. And here’s the  where the nest is located,

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I don’t blame them for building a nest there…. I’d live there too! They have all the fish they can handle around here!

What else?

My health.

I’ve been a bad Bayoucreole. I’m really having a hard time turning my diet around. I’ve tried to eat better but…it’s harder than I thought.

It’s the sweets. I have to find a substitute. Something that will kill the cravings.

And I need to exercise more.

I’ve been lazy lately… I need to walk more.

Not too long ago I was walking 3 miles a day. Somewhere along the way, I fell off and I haven’t been able to get back on the horse.

I guess I need to get my walking mojo back as well.

I’m trying…I’m trying.

I need to pick a day and blog about it so I can keep track of my progress…

or lack thereof.

Well y’all, that’s all I got for right now.

Gotta get out in this city and give you good people something to read…lol

Love you guys…have a good one!

 

 

 

 

 

The Scoop and the Skinny…A Day of Nyxcitement.

I had thee best time Wednesday! Sit down a spell and I’ll tell you all about my pretty darned awesome experience riding with the Mystic Krewe of Nyx.

me in all my nyx splendor!!

me in all my nyx splendor!!

My riding experience actually began Tuesday with float loading. All of the floats are pulled out of the barn and brought to a place undisclosed to the public. We’re given a 3 hour window to load and/or check our throws. You could feel the excitement around the floats as the sisters were busy getting their throws ready for the big night.  The men were just as awesome as ever….checking to see if anyone needed help carrying throws or putting bike hooks up (we use them to hold throws). We just needed the rain to hold up.

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float loading

float loading time!

float loading time!

some of my nyx sisters getting ready to ride.

some of my nyx sisters getting their float together.

Navy Seal getting my area  hooked up for me!

Navy Seal getting my area hooked up for me!

My nyx sister on the float we'll be riding.

nyx sister on our float.

Moi

Moi

The weather wasn’t looking all that great for us. It rained Tuesday and light showers were expected around our time to roll.

But remember, I said it wouldn’t rain on Nyx the year I rode with them.

And the rain held up!

Wednesday morning  began with a light breakfast at home. I had some last-minute float things to do which took some time so I stayed pretty close to  home until it was time to leave.  Around 10:30 a.m. I dressed in full gear and headed out to the float loading area once again to drop off my decorated purses.

The pre-party began at noon. I arrived around that time and checked  in to enter the hall. Security is very tight at the pre-party and you have to show identification to enter. Once checked in, I received my wristband and I was good to go! The pre-party was off the chain! It was held at Generations Hall … they did a wonderful job. The staff was excellent and there was more than enough food and spirits to keep over 1200 women happy!

Mardi Gras  music filled the hall as the ladies  talked, laughed and enjoyed  being around other nyx sisters.

Our totally amazing Captain and Nyx Sisters.

Our totally amazing Captain and Nyx Sisters.

pre-party fun!

pre-party fun!

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me and my nyx sisters

me and my nyx sisters

A Seas of Sisters

A  Sea of Sisters!

After a while, we could hear the sound of brass in the building. Well, with a brass band in the house, only one thing was  going to happen…

time to second line!

Did you notice all the different color wigs and headdresses? That’s because every year, there is a headdress competition. Each float comes up with an idea that’s related to the theme of their float and create headdresses to wear. There were some pretty spectacular  headdresses…there’s a lot of creativity in the krewe.

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representing my float, CHICKEN CORDON BLEU!  YEAH BABY!!!

representing my float,
CHICKEN CORDON BLEU!
YEAH BABY!!!

The pre-party was about 4 hours long. I enjoyed every last-minute of it. It was wonderful being around so many happy women who were eager to spread that happiness on to the City of New Orleans.  Shortly after the headdress competition, we were called to board the floats. Each float had a designated sister  holding a sign and we followed that person to the float.

That’s when it really hit me!

The waiting patiently to  receive  an invitation to join,  all the hard work and  dedication it takes to create purses..its all been for this moment,

TIME TO RIDE!

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making our way to the floats!

making our way to the floats!

My float mate showing us the way!

My float mate showing us the way!

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Float 16 rocked the night!

A few of float 16 riders with our driver.

Once boarded up  and ready to go, we were escorted by the New Orleans Police Department to the staging area. During this time riders began organizing more of their throws or  just took a minute to take it all in.

I took it all in.

Here’s a short clip I created of the ride and how the floats move to the staging area.

floats at staging area

floats at staging area

This is where the bands and dancing troupes  are waiting to “fall in line” with the floats.

Once we reached the staging area and the band  scheduled to march in front of us fell in line,

IT WAS ON!

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nyx coming down the street.

nyx coming down the street.

Here’s  a clip of the parade coming down the street

We began to throw like crazy to the crowd!  You go through sensory overload with so many people screaming for throws for 5 miles, but I enjoyed every single second of it.

The joy that you see when you give someone a throw is priceless. I particularly loved giving decorated purses to those who did not think they would get one from me.

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The crowd was very gracious!

Posters for purses were everywhere! It was spectacular!

A sinus attack kicked in on me around Lee Circle and by the time I made it to the end of the route, I was toast.

I’d do it all in a heartbeat though…sinus attack and all.

It was just that fabulous!

Thanks to all my wonderful friends,family and readers who came out in the cold to support me and the krewe.  It means so much to me that you were there for my inaugural ride.

The city showed the Krewe of Nyx so much love that night.

I’m  looking forward to many years of riding

with this wonderful krewe,

in this fabulous city.

photo courtsey of Streetcar PR.

photo courtsey of Streetcar PR.

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The Lucky 30 and Her Friends

TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT!!   Hail Nyx! We’re rolling tonight at 7!

I’m excited,tired,sad and happy all at the same time. Happy I’m riding, sad that I have to now part with my babies.

What babies you ask?

Why the decorated purses I’ve created throughout the year. It’s our signature throw and if you catch one, you indeed have a prized possession. The purses take many “people hours” to create and a lot of love and attention go into making them. Most of my purses were purchased from thrift stores. I’d often find the most torn and tattered ones and give them new life. We’re only allowed to bring 30 on the float, but we can create more than 30 and give them out to family and friends.

It’s been rainy and it’s supposed to be cold tonight. Hopefully, the rain will be finished by the time we roll…otherwise you all will see a soggy Bayou Creole on the webcam.

I’ll post about my day (which I’m sure will be one of the most amazing days of my life) sometime tomorrow…hopefully.

I gotta go…busy…busy…busy.

Here are some of my creations that I’ll  either throw tonight or have given to friends.  Some are simple, some are not. All have a part of me in them.

I hope you enjoy!

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And So It Begins!

The first big weekend of Mardi Gras is officially underway! I’m super hyped about it this year because,

I ride in 4 days!!

I’ve been really busy finalizing a lot of things for my inaugural ride. I do have my float position though!

Float 16, sidewalk side (that’s passenger side for non NOLA folks),bottom level, 5th person.

Make sure you get my attention so I can hook you up . My blog peeps are my most favorite folks, so I have something special for you all in addition to getting one of our beautifully hand decorated purses. It’s gonna be one awesome night. The ladies in the krewe are all excited about riding and plan to throw like crazy!

I’ll put a post up about my inaugural ride on Thursday (hopefully) with pictures. That way you all will have an idea of what goes on  inside of carnival krewes and what it’s like being on a float. I may even do a 60 sec video and post it. On Tuesday, I will post photos of all the decorated purse that I plan to throw and the ones that I made to go to some friends.

Hopefully, they’ll receive them before I post…lol

Now, on to other Mardi Gras info,

The first big weekend has already begun with the Krewes Oshun and Cleopatra rolling along the uptown route. I wasn’t able to attend. In fact, I’m going to miss being out there for all the parades this weekend. I plan to catch them on  various webcams.

The link for NOLA.com parade cam is here.  This webcam is located at St. Charles Ave. and Napoleon. This is near the beginning of the route and a good one if you are catching the parades near their scheduled time to roll.

If you go into the link now, you should see whatever is happening at the intersection of St. Charles and Napoleon.

*The Krewe of Nyx will be streamed on all webcams. NOLA.com’s webcam is on the sidewalk side so, if you want to try to catch  a view of ole’ Bayou Creole on the float, this is the webcam to watch. If I don’t get too caught up in the moment, I’m going  to wave at the camera!

WWLTV will also stream live. Their camera is located at Gallier Hall. You can find the link here. It will take a while for the parade to get to Gallier Hall. I think Gallier Hall is a little more than half of the parade route.

Here’s the 2014 Mardi Gras Schedule,

February 22 2014

Uptown
Pontchartrain 1:00 p.m.
Choctaw 2:00 p.m.
Freret 2:30 p.m.
Sparta 6:00 p.m.
Pygmalion 6:45 p.m.
 
February 23 2014
Uptown
Carrollton Noon
Alla 1:00 p.m.
King Arthur 1:00 p.m.
French Quarter
Barkus 2:00 p.m.
February 26 2014
Uptown
Druids 6:30 p.m.
Nyx 7:00 p.m.
February 27 2014
Uptown
Babylon 5:30 p.m.
Chaos 6:15 p.m.
Muses 6:30 p.m.
February 28 2014
Uptown
Hermes 6:00 p.m.
D’Etat 6:30 p.m.
Morpheus 7:00 p.m.
March 1 2014
Uptown
Iris 11:00 a.m.
Tucks Noon
Endymion 4:15 p.m.
French Quarter
Lafcadio 2:00 p.m.
March 2 2014
Uptown
Okeanos 11:00 a.m.
Mid-City 11:45 a.m.
Thoth Noon
Bacchus 5:15 p.m.
March 3 2014
Uptown
Proteus 5:15 p.m.
Orpheus (O) 6:00 p.m.
March 4 2014
Uptown
Zulu 8:00 a.m.
Rex 10:00 a.m.
Elks Orleans Follows Rex
Crescent City Follows Elks Orleans
For all of my Purple Knights, St. Aug will be marching in the following parades,
 
Pontchartrain,Alla,NYX,Muses,Hermes,Endymion,Mid City,Bacchus,Orpheus and Zulu.
*They were also in Cleopatra but that parade has already rolled.
 
Here’s a clip of Aug in Cleopatra under the bridge.
 
 
 
I’m on a bandhead forum with all the band directors and they have their bands ready to bring the heat this year!
It’s gonna be an amazing season. We just need the weather to coöperate. I said that  it wouldn’t rain the year I got to ride with Nyx and none is expected so far.
 
I  just hope it stays that way.
 
 
That’s all I have for now. I’ll be posting video clips of parades as I go to them. I won’t be going out on Mardi Gras day though. We’ve decided to stay home this year. If the weather’s really nice, I’ll go out and see the Indians, but I plan to catch everything on the television and hibernate on the couch this year.
 
Let the good times roll!
 
I’m ready to get it in!
 
Have a great weekend y’all!
 

 

     

Nyx Myx Masquerade Ball 2014

The Third Annual Krewe of Nyx Masquerade Ball was held Saturday at the Hilton Rivergate in the grand ballroom.

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It was spectacular!

Last year,I attended as a sister-in-waiting.

This year I attended as a full-fledged member!

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Whoo-Hoo!

It’s a formal affair with tux, full-length gown and masks required.

To keep the blog post short, I’m going to let the pictures tell most of the story.

The event began at 7 pm. Navy Seal and I got there around 6:45 because I knew they’d have a lot of people checking in to enter the ballroom.

And man, did they ever!  The krewe is now 1, 224 women strong and they were ready to party!

Waiting to check in.

Waiting to check in.

Lovely centerpieces adorned each table

Lovely centerpieces adorned each table

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Grand ballroom

Grand ballroom

Navy Seal and I enjoying the company of a friend.

Navy Seal and I enjoying the company of a friend.

Nyx Captain, Julie Lea; Nyx Goddess III Heather Nichols and Board of Directors

Nyx Captain, Julie Lea; Nyx Goddess III Heather Nichols and Board of Directors

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Warren Easton Marching Band

Warren Easton Marching Band

The Sirens performed for us again! They are always so wonderful to see!

The Sirens performed for us again! They are always so wonderful to see!

NOLA Nyxettes made their debut and will be dancing in the parade.

NOLA Nyxettes made their debut and will be dancing in the parade.

A historical moment. The meeting of the courts between the Krewe of Nyx and Zulu for the first time.

A historical moment. The meeting of the courts between the Krewe of Nyx and Zulu for the first time.

Captain Jullie Lea, Nyx Goddess Heather Nichols, Queen Zulu Georgette Mims and King Zulu Garren Mims Sr.

Captain Jullie Lea, Nyx Goddess Heather Nichols, Queen Zulu Georgette Mims and King Zulu Garren Mims Sr.

The Zulu Warriors entered the ballroom after the meeting of the courts and brought the house down!

The Zulu Warriors entered the ballroom after the meeting of the courts and brought the house down!

Zulu Warriors

Zulu Warriors

2nd lining with Zulu

2nd lining with Zulu

Dinner

Dinner

Dessert

Dessert

At 1 a.m. there was a breakfast buffet

At 1 a.m. there was a breakfast buffet

After dinner, it was on and popping! Time to hit the dance floor and party!

After dinner, it was on and popping! Time to hit the dance floor and party!

Ole' BayouCreole and Navy Seal on the dance floor!

Ole’ BayouCreole and Navy Seal on the dance floor!

Joy was the emotion of the night!

Joy was the emotion of the night!

Nyx Sisters know how to party!

Nyx Sisters know how to party!

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These beautiful ladies are my float mates. I just love them to pieces!

These beautiful ladies are my float mates. I just love them to pieces!PicsArt_1391427516481

A night filled with fun family and friends.

A night filled with fun, family and friends.

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Zulu Warrior with Nyx Sisters

Zulu Warrior with Nyx Sisters

It was truly an amazing night!!

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Lets Catch Up!

I know its been a while,but I haven’t given up blogging just yet. I’m trying this blogging by phone stuff so, bear with me if you see typos.

A lot has been going on.

A few weeks ago,I almost lost my brother. He was on his motorcycle and was hit by a car. The accident left him with a broken femur.

We were all amazed that,that was all he had. He had a few scratches but to say he was thrown about 40 feet and didn’t hit his head,we were grateful that he only had a broken leg.

Until the next day,

when he began to have trouble breathing.

The respiratory failure was the beginning of a series of events that led him to be put on a ventilator,

and having multiple strokes all throughout his brain.

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Between the strokes and anoxia (lack of oxygen)my brother was in a state of semi consciousness. He could hear us and understand us,but he couldn’t move anything below the neck

and he couldn’t open his eyes.

I would visit him 4 times a day. Visiting hours in ICU are only 4 times a day for 30 minutes a visit.

We would let him know that we were there. Often times I’d see a tear in the corner of his eye and wipe it away,

reassuring him that I had him and he would be alright.

Because he wasn’t able to make any decisions,I had to make all decisions about his care. And I had to be real aggressive about it.  Doctors tend to think you’re going to agree with everything they want to do simply because they’re the doctors.

I don’t take my 20 years of nursing lightly.And when someone I love is depending on me to keep him alive,

I’m not going to agree with everything.

Once his brain had time to heal,he came back to us.

He’s now  home and receiving therapy. Prognosis for complete recovery is excellent.

I have permission to use the pics.

Since my brother is home and doing so well,I’m able to get into the festive mood that’s in the air.

IT’S CARNIVAL TIME!!!

Last night,I went to the Krewe of Nyx 12th night meeting/party.  It was fabulous! King Cake and drinks flowed,we found out the krewe’s theme, our float number and had a great time reconnecting with fellow sisters.

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I’m on float number 16!

I don’t know what side or position yet but,I’ll post it when I find out.

I’m grinding out purses for the ride, but a few are for friends.

Like this Mardi Gras Indian inspired one.

indian purse

I’m also making a few wreaths.  I made this one for myself.

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Who knew I had the creative gene?!

Next month,I’ll post pics of all the purses I’ve decorated.

Since this is carnival season, I’m going to try to post more often.

I’m glad to be back.

I’ve missed you guys.