Thursday, February 18, 2010

Then and Now THURSDAY

It was THEN: February 18, 1984
...that I met the love of my life, my future husband and the future father of my two children and future grandfather of our grandchildren...I mean at this point, grandchild.
[This photo was actually taken a few months later before my high school graduation, May 1984.]

This is NOW: February 7, 2010.

Yes, today is our Meetaversary. It was 26 years ago today, February 18, 1984 that Randy and I met for the first time. Twenty-one months and 11 days later we were married in a small church right down the road from my home. The end of this year we will celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. I am hoping and praying that we have a better financial year so that we can celebrate it some grand fashion, but if not, I still love him more than I did on that day, November 29, 1985. Last year, Feb. 18, 2009, I blogged about our Meetaversary Day and did a tribute post to him. Click HERE if you missed it. I listed 25 (because it had been 25 years) reasons why I love him. So I think this I am going to add #26.
26. I love that he has lived up to all my expectations and then some.
He has recently made a stronger committment to Christ than he has ever made in the past. I can honestly tell you that I am more in love with him than ever before. I keep thinking "what I have done to deserve such a man". Nothing...just one of my richest, sweetest blessings in my life.
I love you, Hunny! I look forward to the next 26 years and beyond. I have a feeling it will be even better than the first 26.

Monday, February 15, 2010


Yes, I tried to titled like I so often here this man's name, Drew Breeeeezzzzz. My family has been a Saints fans before they ever had their first attempt at the playoffs in 1987. Yes, they had one in 1987 the year before we had our first child. I even dug our the 1987 Saints Playoff sweatshirt that I bought my husband, Randy, for Christmas that year. It was a VERY BIG DEAL! So if that was a big deal, how much more so this year has been with the Saints winning season and at least it was for the first 13 or 14 games or so. As stated before, I am NOT a big sports fan. I am an LSU fan and a SAINTS fans by default and I am really loving being a Saints fan now because of a hero like this guy! How awesome was this: Win the Super Bowl, Make Sure you have Your Little Guy in your Arms and the FIRST WORDS out of your mouth were GOD IS GREAT! The State of Louisiana really needed a hero like this.
I just love his boyish grins and the sincerity that see written all his face and the love that he has for his family, our state and above all God.

A week ago yesterday, my family's beloved team, the New Orleans Saints, won the Super Bowl. Click HERE to read my blog post on Natalie's World as to how we celebrated in New Orleans. The next day on our way home we decided to go to the airport to welcome them home. Click HERE to view that post on this same blog. We were very disappointed to learn that we weren't going to see the leader of this great team, Drew Brees, MVP of the Super Bowl. We quickly heard through the discussion in the crowd the reason he was not coming home with the rest of the team was because he would begin making appearances immediately as MVP of the Super Bowl. So as soon as all the press conferences were over and the rest of the team, were getting ready to fly by home to New Orleans, Drew was headed to Disney World. Yes, I was bit jealous of my good friend, Nicki. She photographed these at the DISNEY WORLD the same day at the "Disney Parks: CELEBRATES SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS" parade at Disney World the next day, Feb. 8, 2010. Click HERE to view her complete post.

Thanks, Nicki, for these photos...

I thought it was quite neat that Drew is wearing the same Saints Fleur de Lis beads that Brittany had picked up for us to wear to the Super Bowl party. See I keep finding more reasons to like this guy.

The next appearance this day was at the David Letterman show. I almost fell asleep waiting for his appearance, but my eyes immediately popped open once he made his appearance.
When we were so tired from driving/riding home, we were thinking at least we'll get home in time to see him with Dave.

While I am not much into Mardis Gras, I really loved this article and I think it really put many of my thoughts and so many people from the state of Louisiana in perspective. Please read this Thank You to Drew post from If you are even bit touched by the Saints pulling this win off, I think this will make you cry too.

Before I read the above article, I found this on facebook fan page (I think) called, "Saints QB Drew Brees talks about Jesus".
EDITTED TO ADD THE MORE DETAILED VERSION OF THIS VIDEO (sent to me via email by Randy) This one is the same as the first link, but it instead:
[Okay, I am having problems getting it to link. Go to YouTube and just do a search to find it. It is called SVT Interview with Dree Brees. I am sure it will come up. Be sure to do this. I think you'll enjoy it.]
It is so refreshing to see a MAN OF GOD represent the state of Lousiana, NFL football team and the winning Super Bowl Quarter Back. Thank you, Drew, from the Ainsworth Family.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


Friday, aka SNOW DAY HERE (02.12.10), I posted this image on facebook. I had NOT blogged or posted images on facebook book about our snow in December just two months previously. So I quickly worked up this little photo comparison to show the difference.

Since there were so many posts that day on facebook with everyone posting images and all the status updates over everyone obvious enthusiasm for snow in the Miss-Lou Region, I thought someone may have easily overlooked this photo and felt it was worth blogging about it.

Just think, we just thought that was a snow day, but right at 10 weeks later, we really had a snow day! Who would have believed one Winter we had two snow days! What a great memory!


Saturday, February 13, 2010

FIRST THE SAINTS WIN THE SUPER BOWL and the Snow in Central Louisiana... what's going to happen next!
A really big Saints Fan, say Cari Ainsworth, write "WHO DAT?" in the snow.
I think soo...

Cari's car as seen from the front porch. Photographed yesterday a.m. around 7ish when I let Precious outside
No, she wasn't foud of this thick white stuff at all!
She seemed to strategically make way down the steps and back up...completely different paths.

Cari and Randy's Snowman. No, I didn't help at all. I was too busy photographing the scenery. And if you didn't see enough of snow on this blog post and if your are a facebook friend of mine, check it out because there were many, many more!
He seems to be saying "Go that way..." or with his other hand, "High Five!"

Looks like we needed a snow gauge rather a rain gauge. We did, however, estimate about 5 inches more or less. If the ground had been frozen when it started (like even 32 degrees), we probably would have had twice that much because much of it melted quickly. Most of the accumulation came during the night and then it continued to snow until early afternoon the next day (02.12.10).
One of my favorites images of Cari. It was actually a little over exposed and what do I often do with over exposed images...yes, play! I love, love this as a black and white.

Cari's car from another angle, photographed after I got out in the yard. Remember the first one was photographed when I was letting Precious out (while I was still in jammies) from the porch.

Randy's truck...
My vehicle did not get any snow photographs since it was safe under the garage/house.

Silly Cari catching snow with her tongue...

Cari and I...

Randy and Cari...

Randy and I....
It quite a fun SNOW DAY experience here at home in Frogmore. While I didn't make a snowman or do snow angels, I did thoroughly enjoy the scene and capturing some of it through photographs. I did, however, after taking the last posed photographs, have fun in snowball throwing fight!


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

How many Saints fans does it take to WELCOME HOME THE SAINTS?

...apparently a lot. Reports estimated 10,000 to 30,000. I have no idea how they get this estimate, but either way that's a bunch!

Yes, that's Cari and Randy mixed in among the crowd. Randy is visiting with this older gentleman that we met who has lived in New Orleans for over 40 years, but is original for the Alexandria area. We enjoyed visiting with him over the next few hours. I don't know if we would have sought out this adventure if we would have realized just what we were getting ourselves into, but I am glad that we did.
Several games away from the Super Bowl, Cari asked her dad if they made it to final game, could she go welcome them back home at the airport. I assume that she has seen this on TV before and thought it would be neat to do that especially if they made it this far. I even asked her if she would still want to if they didn't win. She still did. So when they won the next day, Randy made some phone calls and we made the decision to go to NOLA. CLICK HERE to view SUPER BOWL DAY AT NATALIE'S WORLD as viewed through my eyes, (of course).

We had heard (even before we left for NOLA) that they would not be coming home that night, but didn't know anything for sure. Since they did win, they DID HAVE TO STAY for press conferences. And did not have any actually plans of going to the airport. However, we ate breakfast/lunch at IHOP and were in the car on our way home listening to more Saints radio, of course. It was about 12:15 as we were trying to get on Interstate to head home. We heard the radio annoucer say that the Saints were expected to arrive at 1:30. Since we were very near the aiport exit, we couldn't the opportunity to at least check it out.

By the time we found our way down Veteran's Blvd where so many were already lined up with their cars, we had to leave our by the overpass and walk over and find a place to wait. At this point, it should have only been another hour. If I had to guess, I would say about 1/3 of the crowd was there when we arrived. More and more people continued to accumlate. It mind boggling to believe this many people would show up for this.

This is what the crowd looked like to begin with. The tall building in the background is near the airport. We were still a good distance from it. People were lined all the way to the airport to the overpass and past.

This is when the traffic was still flowing on both sides of the curb. We chose the right side in hopes that the players and coaches would be driving their vehicles.

Now the owner of this vehicle was a very serious fan.

See what I mean...

Cari and I liked this girl's sign: DAT'S DAT!

In sequence of event (the first image of Cari, Randy and many others)...

Traffic was beginning to slow down and only a few cars were coming through at this point.

I don't think this was the exact plane, but it looked just like it (that is if it was the one that we thought...of course when this was photographed we thought this was it).
I included this photo rather than the other one because I liked the flag/pennat that was flying in the bottom of the image.

This guy playing the drum visited with us too. He came from California to see the Super Bowl from NOLA. Howver, he was orginally from New Orleans. I don't know the other guys story, but I think they met the day before on Bourbon Street. They played When the Saints Go Marching In. They really boosted the morale of the crowd and made it more intersting.

Finally a few cars started coming. I am not sure if this was the "official" group yet, but you gotta admit, that looks like a New Orleans Saints car. It also reminded me of a car my dad had when I was a kid. My dad's car wasn't this cool!

See the people lined up on the overpass. The police ran them off several times, but they finally gave up on that.
Also notice this fence. They put up the wobbly-portable fence. The told us that this fence would be on our side and a cop car would go side by side on the other side. So as sad as I was that we were going to be viewing this through a chain-link fence, I knew that was better than not seeing at all because of the cop car. didn't go that way.

See I told you those people came back and then some.

They removed the fence and the cop cars did NOT go beside them. The players, coaches and even owners (in the next photo, Rita Benson Leblanc) could barely drive there cars through. The people were so thick the cars just had to ease through to avoid running over people. Cari turned paparazzi on us and fought other women with point and shoot cameras and camera phones the Saints members as they slowly drove through. Some of the were very friendly and still seemed very excited. A few didn't even put their dark tinted windows down. SNOBS! But most of them, were at least, very accommodating and gave high fives...okay maybe not HIGH FIVES, but had their hands out sort of like a cross between giving five and hand shaking...kind of the baseball teams at the end of the game with each other. Needless to say, it was nice gesture. I know they had to be getting tired of the attention and probably just wanted to go home to sleep or rest.
Many of the people we didn't recognize. After all, they didn't have their jerseys on with their names and numbers. But I was told that this was Rita Benson LeBlanc. I did look up the Saints roster that included players, coaches and mangers, which confirmed that information. I plan to post many more images on facebook. I would love to hear who recognizes them either because they really knew who it was or could identify them from their photo on the website. As I looked through it, I recognized many of the faces Cari photographed, but I do not have the time or desire to match all of them and list their names.

Most of the photos that Cari took were very close. She had to literally be on top of them. If she allowed any space someone would be in front of her in heartbeat. In fact, she did end up getting many camera phones and peoples' heads in her images too. I am sure many of them popped in just as she was snapping.

Again I was told this was the defensive coach, Greg Williams. The WEBSITE confirmed.

Even I recognized the Owner of the Saints, Mr. Benson.

Who recognizes this guy? I will give you hint. He made the winning 3 points in the game against the Minnesota Vikings on the 24th.

There it is, the LOMBARDI TROPHY, and the man himself, Sean Peyton, HEAD COACH OF THE NEW ORLEANS SAINTS.

I think Cari was especially proud to have captured this one.

Now doesn't this player seem to be enjoying this as much as the crowd enjoyed seeing them?
Do you know who he is?
I think I do...according to the ROSTER, this is Thomas Morstead, #6.

This was quite an adventure and I am glad that Cari and Randy had to opportunity to do this. I know they both got a kick out of it. It was a little trouble, but I think it meant a lot to the Saints and everyone who made them who they are from coaches to staff. But what would they be without their fans.
Oh I almost forgot. I will have one more mini post about the Saints. We did not get to see MY FAVORITE PLAYER, Drew Brees. I will do another post on that and why we didn't.
For now, I think this is it. If you happen to be a Saints fan and would like to see some of the close-up photos that Cari captured at the airport as the Saints were going one, please look me up on facebook. I plan to post them in a day or so.


Friday, January 1, 2010

GOODBYE 2009; HELLO 2010

Okay, I finished another year not blogging as well as intend to or would like to, but I had the best intentions. And I wished starting the brand new year (right at 9 hours into it) with a new blog post would mean that I am going to be better at documenting my life and those I love the most. But I know this year will probably be as busy as ever and will be quite overwhelming at time (as usual), all I can do is put my best foot forward, love God, love my family and all the rest should fall into place. HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!

I hope you enjoy our New Year's Greeting. I've been saying for years that I may drop Christmas Cards and do these because my life is always so busy during the holidays. In fact, that was my plan last year, but then the family photo in front of the tree before we opened gifts was not even in scratch that idea. My plan had been to send a New Year's Card along with the Christmas Cards and letters (the one that I recently edited, printed and included with 2009 cards), but since it didn't work out last year, I was glad to do it this year. I only ordered a few. I really don't like sharing an image of myself with the extra weight that seems to cling to me these days (plan to do some about that soon--sort of a new years resolution) which is why I put it here and not one of my blogs that gets more hits. Even though I think I look very plump, I love that we are ALL in one photograph and that we look so happy. I want to remember that and that's what this blog has been all about!