Monday, June 5, 2006

I'm Baa-aaack!......Did You Miss Me?

I didn't really have time to post anything on my blog before I left, but I went with my sister, Donna, (aka zztop here in my comments) to Mountain View, Arkansas to visit my niece over the weekend. I had so much to do around the house, shopping and getting ready to go that I didn't have time to blog about the trip and let everyone I'd be in-blog-nito for the weekend. These photos aren't mine, I Googled them for eye candy. I took a few pictures with my faithful digital camera, but most of them were from the moving vehicle and aren't exactly professional quality. In other words, they make like a Hoover, and are only fit for my viewing. I did get a couple of my great-niece and great-nephew that are pretty good, so I'll share those here.
That's Jon on the left, and Luci on the right. I'm just a little bit partial to them, but not any more than I am to the other great-nieces and nephews. Luci can't pronounce Diane plainly, so she calls me Di-nan. It's cute, and I've been called a lot worse over the years.

That picture below and left is of me and Tami. She was about Luci's age now, maybe 3 or 4. They favor quite a bit, I think. I know I'm dating myself, but it's fun to compare the mother/daughter pics, I think.

Thanks to my niece Tami and Ron for their hospitality, and to Donna for inviting me to go along with her. I got to do several of my favorite things this weekend: Travel; sight-see; go to the Ozark Mountains; go catfishing; and listen to live music on the square in Mountain View. They are well-known for their musical heritage, especially country music, bluegrass, gospel, folk and instrumental. We had good weather for it, too. Mostly sunny and hot in the daytime, but not too hot, and cool at night but not too cool. We didn't even need the air conditioner at night, although I did use my little fan I took along with me. If you've never been to the Ozarks, I highly recommend you visit. There's everything from camping to cabins to bed and breakfasts to the big chain hotels, according to where you go and your personal preferences.

Here's a couple of maps to show
where I live, and where to find Mountain View. On the map to the left, if you'll look on the right side, you'll see Memphis, Tennessee, and just above it, Jonesboro, Arkansas. Just southeast of Jonesboro, you'll see Bay, Arkansas, where I live. Also, notice Batesville, Arkansas. On the next map, below right, it's zoomed in a little more on Batesville and the surrounding area.

Mountain View is where the red star is in the center of the map. I had a grand time, but, Mercy, I was give out when I got home! I don't recall having fun taking so much out of me when I was younger. Or maybe that was because I WAS younger.......Anyway, all that fun whupped me real good, and I'm still recovering. For anyone who might not know, mountains seem to have a lot of rocks, and are very steep, whether you're trying to walk up, or down. Arthritis and rocks, steep, up and down make for a very stiff and painful Diane. :-( But I'm ready to go back tomorrow if I get the chance. :-)

Ticks......I can report that there is an especially good crop of these things this year. I found one crawling up my bare leg, but so far I haven't found any actually stuck and biting me. The people, pets, livestock and wildlife who live around there battle them every year. That is one thing I don't like about the mountains, but we have ticks here in the Delta, too.

Another thing I saw an over-abundance of was this: Poison ivy, there climbing the tree on the left, and Poison oak, on the right. I don't know how I managed to avoid it, but so far I have escaped the itchy rash that informs you that you rashly got too up-close and personal with the offensive herbage. Poison oak I can treat at home and wear out with home remedies, but the only time I had poison ivy, which attacked me when I was cutting wood, I had to go to the Doctor to free myself from the bondage of THE ITCHING......OH, THE ITCHING!! And did I mention the itching? Oh. My. Word. I have NEVER ItChEd in my life like I did with poison ivy. So I scratched.......and I scratched........And when I wasn't scratching, I ITCHED just for more practice. I got to be an expert at itching and scratching, let me tell you.

Another thing I seem to have escaped this time is an infestation of chiggers. Chiggers are teeny tiny red mites that bite, and are smaller than the head of a pin.If you've never had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of a pack (?) of chiggers, you should stop reading this blog right. now. and offer thanks to God in Heaven for His blessings on you thus far in your sheltered life. In my experience, you don't usually have just one or two chiggers......They attack in squadrons, and in some VERY sensitive places at times. It's just not polite to scratch where chiggers like to set up their itchy housekeeping, folks. Chiggers make itchy, unsightly, huge honkin' bumps. Anybody who's ever had one can spot one on somebody else from halfway across Walmart, usually on the Calamine lotion and Hydrocortisone Cream aisle. Now if you want to talk about true misery, let's talk about having poison oak/ivy and chiggers together. Now there's a recipe for misery, and I've been the proud recipient of that mix several times in my checquered past. Hunting, fishing, walking in the woods or just sitting on an innocent looking rock can render you inflicted and infected in just few minutes time.

I got home late Sunday afternoon, then had to go get groceries Monday morning. Sue and Cecil came up to visit Monday afternoon and play games, then I barbecued some country-style ribs on the grill, and grilled some yellow squash. It was good stuff, if I do say so myself. If you like squash, you have to try it grilled. I brush it with a little oil, salt to taste, and grill till tender crisp. I like portabella mushrooms grilled, too, or any mushrooms for that matter.

As I said, I'm still recovering from my weekend trip, and man, I'm tired! So, I will post this and try to catch up on some of your blogs that I fell behind on reading. I'm not as lucky as some, I don't have a laptop. Not that it would have mattered, I probably wouldn't have had internet access anyway. My niece has internet through their subscription TV provider, though. Tami, I will try to send you some of those pics I took while I was there as soon as I can get to it, okay? You, too, zztop. You can right-click on these on the blog to save these if you want them. Okay, I'm through playing now. Love and blessings to all my blogger friends and family. Have a great week, everyone! :-) :-)


BooMama said...

Well, I was about ready to put out an APB. :-)

Glad you had a good time - a little road-trippin' is good for the soul.

We were in Memphis over the weekend...talked to a friend of my SIL's who has a cabin in Hardy, AR. Is that close to you?

Get some rest - and I have some fresh squash, so I think I'll try them just like you mentioned. It's a GLORIOUS time of year for cooking, isn't it? So many fresh goodies.

Nasty Nashe said...

D!!! i was like totally wondering and wondering (and wondering)where you been. heh hehz. you have been brutally missed.

I've never been near poison ivy or bitey miteys before (i don't think so anyway) so i prolly can't imagine how you itched.. hhahaha.... that was funny, im sorry!
but wh00, i'll be sure to stay far far away from the big bad ivy from now on. haha...

my leg's been bitten by red ants for like, the third time already. It's unsightly, i tell you.

Diane said...

Hey, BooMama,
Glad to hear A. is feeling better, :-)
And Hardy is about 60 miles from Bay. I've been there LOTS of times, most recently about 6 weeks ago to see the dogwoods and redbuds in bloom. I love it up there.
Yes, I love the fresh garden goodies, especially the TOMATOES!!
There's something almost spiritual about the first ripe tomato of summer, LOL. ;-)

Diane said...

I'm touched that you missed me, really I am. :-)

I went fishing last week and I STILL have ant bites on my legs. Yep, unsightly is a good word for it, LOL. ;-)

I don't know, do you even HAVE poison oak or ivy in S'pore?

momteacherfriend said...

thanks for looking out on the poison oak. I took a good look at your pictures then called in miss sue. She said that it was Kutsue (sp??) she would of had us out of there in a minute if it would have been any poisous. Believe you me, I know full well the itch of poison ivy. Did you know that they used it in war to bring down the defenses of the enemy? Who wants to hold their gun when they are itching uncotrollably? You made me itch at just the thought of it.

"The Glenifer" said...

Your trip sounds fun. Ryan and I have been trying to decide on a place for a family trip somewhere up there near the mountains. Our dad and stepmom are going to treat us all to a cabin this fall if we can find one big enough for six adults and the two boys. I want a lake view and some caves nearby. Glen wants to try horseback riding again. We all love to fish.

I noticed Mountain Home on your map. Our neighbors have some granddaughters from there, and they should be in town for a visit any day now.

Have a nice day!

Sue said...

So glad you're back! Your posts are like sitting down and chatting with a dear friend. Glad you had the chance for a little getaway. Those always make for good blog material :-)
PS And yes, I missed you!!!

Dick said...

That sounds like a good weekend. I am hoping my brother will drive over this weekend from Spokane. On the "Today" show this morning it looks like all of Arkansas is going to be getting rain pretty much all over the state today. Those nation wide satellite views are fantastic! It did look like the tornados would be farther west than you.

We have poison oak on our side of the mountains and there are ticks in Eastern Wash. There are rattle snakes over on east side. But of those pests you mentioned that is about all we have here and there are not usually many problems with them. Probably part of the problem west of the Cascades is that we are too wet.

Praying for your Prodigal said...

WELCOME HOME!!!! Don't EVER go away for so long again!

Enjoyed your are so technically gifted!

:) Diane

Mike Goodwin said...

Nice pics, Diane. I'll have to admit, I've never had the pleasure of ticks or poison ivy. I do know, however, the joy of chiggers. It's funny, but when I lived in Chicago, no one even knew what a chigger was. Either they don't have them, or they don't know what they are.

Luci's little name for you reminds me of my sister Nancy. It all started when 8 year old Zack was little. He couldn't pronounce Nancy, so he called her Nanny. That name stuck with everyone. Even I call her Nanny to this day. Kids are so cute. :-)

Sue said...

You've been tagged :-)

green eyed girl on planet earth said...

Hello Diane
I have missed you , love this post sounds like a lot of fun and you are all tuckered out from your trip ,nice to get away isnt it .
I said the little thank you you said to say if I never seen a chigger , I wonder if they are like teeny tiny red ants ? There bites are like you said chiggers were. you made me itch girl while reading about the itchyness you had ,,haha .Glad your having fun , wish I could share it wioth ya , take care friend

Connie and Rob said...

So glad you got to get away and enjoy yourself. I haven't been to the Ozarks for years except to go to the outlet mall and come back. You did the trip like it was meant to be.

Can't wait to see your pictures. Get some rest.

Take care,

Brenda said...

So glad you're back. You have been missed! I've never been to Mountain View, but I've been close.

If you look on that first map, the black star is where I grew up, and if you follow Hwy 67 N to Ward (not on the map, but about halfway between LR and Searcy), that's where I lived before I moved to Georgia. My sister lives in Springdale, which is over there next to Fayetteville (Go Hogs!)

I had chiggers once after picking blackberries. Itchy, itchy, owie. I'm not allergic to poison ivy as far as I know, but my mom and sister are. I think the only thing I am allergic to is mosquitoes. If there's one within a 50-mile radius, it'll come after me and bring all its cronies with it.

Lisa said...

I hear ya on the Poison Ivy! And I do believe I found Poison Oak here as well. They said it had something to do with the mild winter we all had. I don't know, but I hate it!

Get some rest! :)

Anonymous said...

i wus wondering how yu got to go with zztoper to the mountins. i ask her to let me go and she said "why take a hotdog to a banquet". i ain't figured that one out yet. do ya thank she lakes me? i sure hope so. you shud put that picter of her talking to me on the blogger page so everybody can see how much she lakes me. oh well. i shure am glad yr back cause i shur did miss reading you tiping. thanks fer letin me tipe on your paper. bye

Andre said...

Hey Lady, Di! Now that you've returned to the dizzying, eye-straining world of cybernetic weblogging, I can call off the search party.

From the sounds of it, I'd say that you had a pretty busy and...well...itchy...week. But, I'm glad you had a chance to get away from stuff.

But, now that the euphoria has faded, you're stuck with me again.

Duh, duh, duuuunnnn....

Good to hear from you!

Faith said...

Sounds like you had fun!! Poison ivy -- yuck, ouch, scratch and all that!!!

Peace said...

Hi Diane, a million thanks to you for your sincere comments and taking your trouble to explain to me about Cebest's condition. You have such a great blog here! This is my first time seeing Poison Ivy, though I always heard of it, thanks again for your great help.

HolyMama! said...

those kids are so cute! i can see why you're partial.

and ick to the crop of ticks. ew!

welcome home!