Sunday, December 27, 2015

My Christmas Vacation

Banana Foster at Brennan's Restaurant in New Orleans
Christmas 2015
What I did on my Christmas Vacation...
OK, I know it is a cliche elementary school writing assignment title, right? This could alternately be called my Post-Christmas Prattle -But Wow! Eleven days vacation -you would think I'd have time to do everything I needed/wanted to do. You'd be wrong.  Not so.  Oh very not so, but it was a great trip.

Chris Roberts-Antieau Fabric Creations Collage
Chris Roberts-Antieau's Fabric Creations
First leg, New Orleans - need I say more! How inspiring!  Music - we found a really cool jazzy swing sort of band in the Frenchman district. Libation - um, a bit too much one night.  I've a new favorite drink though, the Perfect Storm with ginger beer.  Yum!  Feasting - Flaming Bananas Foster table side at Brennan's, such fun!  Then there was the people watching, architecture gawking, and gallery hopping!

Lots of Christmas Shopping was done since I couldn't bring much on the plane from Key West.  Along Royal Street, I was able to pick up a small sculpture by Cathy Rose at the Lucky Rose Gallery for my brother David, an adorable bust of a little boy in a striped top sticking out his tongue. Also believe it or not, I picked up some fun little gifts at the French Quarter Post Office. Who'd of thought.  Oh, and I am totally lusting for one of Chris Roberts-Antieau's fabric creations from the Phantom Limb series.  Of course, I want the most expensive one hanging in the gallery.  Simply Exquisite! Not in the budget this year but one day (soon?)

New Orleans Christmas
New Orleans Christmas 2015
Next it was on to Fairhope and my glorious bathtub. Oh sweet bathroom -airy and light, room to twirl, twist, and truly spread out! The new shower was all done with lots of jets and sprays. Awesome indeed, but dear tub, you are what I've missed and are still my delight (I'm already going through withdrawal)

Well my Fairhope days passed quickly, mostly visiting friends and family.  We did a pre-Christmas Christmas -actually several; one with my brothers, one with my cousins, then an early Santa with my girls and Pete.

I even got in a quick trip to Mississippi to see my Mam-maw. She is 98 years young and her mind is still amazingly sharp.  Unfortunately her sight, hearing and sense of touch are not so good.  (You can imagine how frustrating this must be)  Mam-maw thoroughly enjoyed the visit and the car ride allowed for interesting discussions with Robby, David, and Megan who also came along.

Christmas 2015

I didn't get as much done at the 404 Oak Avenue House as I'd hoped.  We have it listed on  If you ever want to come stay a while in Fairhope, please check it out.  The location is great (and you too could bath in bliss, LOL)

I bought blow dryers, a couple pillows, printer paper, end table, iron & iron board, etc - niceties for the house.  Then laid tile out for the outdoor kitchen countertop mosaic.  I didn't have time to grout it but Pete can do that in the next couple weeks.  I couldn't believe I had just the right amount of tile saved up in the shed  The colors were an ideal blend of mottled earthy hues with golden, red and green accents, perfectly picking up the colors of the house exterior.  The tiles are all upcycled (don't you just love that word) from discontinued lines and previous project samples that the WAV office was purging.  Truly serendipitous!

Key West Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
I wasn't sure if going to Fairhope would trigger a nostalgic homesickness but while I loved being back (especially seeing friends & family) I wasn't sad.  Still somewhat "between" sensation but not in a bad way.  More like both Fairhope and Key West feel like home.  I'm curious how my life will play out. An adventure, for sure!  As they say in New Orleans, Laissez les bons temps roulez!

Quick add: Christmas Eve back in Key West, I did the Christmas Eve candlelight service at the Big Pine Key Vineyard Church then Christmas Morning service at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Key West.  Both were wonderful in their own way. The Vineyard has as my brother would say "Jesus Rock" while St. Paul's building is gorgeous, very historic and traditional with impressive vaulted stained wood ceilings and intricate stained glass windows. 

Totally had a laid back Christmas day, read the "Precious One", an interesting bit of chic lit told through alternating POVs on my back porch then sipped a piƱa colada over looking Duval Street before catching the fun play, "Fools" by Neil Simon at the Red Barn Theater.  (Reminded me of my Dad back in his Laurel Little Theater days) Naturally I missed my family but all in all, still a very nice way to celebrate JESUS's birthday!  

Double Music for Today: 
The Voice winner, Jordan Smith's version of "Great is Thy Faithfulness" & "Set Fire to the Rain"

Pentatonix's version of "Little Drummer Boy" & "Mary did you know"