September 20, 2005
Back home with baby
Tonight is our first night back home with our new addition. The kids are in bed, the wife is in bed with the new baby and all is well. Candice had a c-section and thus needs and will need a great deal of assistance for some time to come, but she is already doing well about getting around and seems to be listening to us when we tell her "Don't do that, let me get it". Baby boy never had any misconception about what breastfeeding was all about, he was getting collustrum from the first day and milk yesterday. We are taking him in for his circ on Thursday(good thing he doesn't know what that is) and that should do the doctor visits for about a week.
My boss has given me most of the week off and the family is very glad for it. The boys and I are going to do some tree trimming tomorrow in preparation for Rita...just in case. Aside from that, it's keep mommy comfortable and play with the boy.
Life is good.
We have a new addition to our family. Jesse Lee Marsalis was born at 4:17am on Saturday morning. He is doing well as is mommy.
September 06, 2005
Are you reading this right now from your home or office? If so, you must have electricity. If you have electricity, you probably have water and sewer service, air conditioning, fresh food, and a place to sleep. How many people have you seen in the past week on television(or in person) that no longer have any of those things? Feel like complaining? Look around...you have no reason, really, to do so. Take a moment and count your blessings and give thanks for what you have, especially your loved ones.
September 05, 2005
Back from Covington
My boys and I, along with a friend from church, went to my parents' house again today and finished patching the roof. The boys and Chris continued the cleanup of the yard. We currently have a pile of limbs and debris along the roadside that is 4 feet high and 25 feet long. There is still a lot more to clean up. On the way out today, we drove through the neighborhood and looked up and down a lot of streets I don't usually go down just coming and going. Trees down everywhere. Trees in peoples garages, dining rooms, backyards, frontyards...entire trees through peoples' homes...like all the way to the ground through their home. And the amount of trucks and support that is on I-10 and I-12...it's like something from a movie. There is so much, it's just surreal. We can look up and see the TC-130s refueling the helicopters in midair over Covington, Mandeville. There aren't nearly as many today as their were the past several days, but there is still a great deal of activity. I've never seen this much military presence, even when I was in the military. It's just so unbelieveable...and yet, in the midst of all of this, people are still doing those everyday things in my parents' neighborhood- they are visiting, out walking, kids are riding their bikes, people are cleaning up, life is going on.
September 04, 2005
Yesterday, I went into Mandeville where my parents live to get a tree off of their house and out of their roof. The amount of destruction I saw was unfathomable. I had no idea, not really, how much damage had been done. Now, before I went, I contacted a friend whose mother works for St Tammany and I insured that I would not be getting in the way of any service or rescue and recovery personnel. I was told that if I was going to a private residence to begin cleanup, that was fine. I was told to be "cautious" and it was suggested that I take steps "to ensure my safety". So, yes, I was packing. When we reached Hammond, you started seeing the destruction. Trees down, roofs peeled off, Highway signs GONE, and debris everywhere. I'll post more later, we're going to church right now.
September 02, 2005
Would someone please evacuate Mr Jackson?
This is sickening to listen to and watch. Mr. Jackson is turning this whole thing into a big political commercial from himself. Listening to him, it sounds like the fault of every white person out there. He is such a disgrace to the title of Reverend, I just want to vomit.
Can we please get him out BEFORE he causes a riot?
September 01, 2005
St Tammany Parish
For those of you from St Tammany Parish thinking about going back to take a look at your homes, please don't go. There is nothing you can do right now. It's dangerous, there are electrical lines on the ground, trees all over the roads...every road. You will wind up getting in the way more than you help. Besides this, the Sheriff's department is not allowing people to exit I-12 in St Tammany.
Please take the time to help
I want to encourage all of you to take just a few minutes, or hours, and go to a local shelter to volunteer in the next few days. Take the time to sit down and talk to a mom and her kids. They probably don't have a home to go back to, or if they do it's probably badly damaged. Find an older person that has experienced life, and bring them a cup of coffee and listen to them tell about what they've been through. Invite one of them, or a whole family, over for a meal. Show them you care, even if you feel like it's not enough. This people are uprooted from their homes, their friends, their families, their lives. Take some time from yours and help them to remember that it's going to be all right. If you were in their position, you'd want someone to do the same for you.
Just typing after Katrina
Just a week ago we were watching a class 2 hurricane in the southern Gulf of Mexico. One week ago none of us ever imagined the destruction and death that would follow in this storm's wake in just 4 days. Amazing, how quickly the things that really matter are put into sharp focus when placed against the backdrop of this kind of destruction and tragedy. My entire family is safe. None of our homes were destroyed, even Candice's parents house wasn't damaged in Ocean Springs. My mom and dad's house in Covington(Mandeville) likely received some wind and limb damage, but no flood waters. None of my family members died. My children are asleep in their beds. Our lights are on, are water is working, our roof is sound. There are no trees down in our yard, we haven't had to fill up our gas tanks since last Friday and we are able to open our home to those of Candice's family that have been uprooted from their homes. I'm typing this as the washing machine is going into spin cycle. I'm drinking a glass of ice water(I don't have to boil it first) and I can hear my wife and her mother laughing in the living room. The air conditioner is on right now and I can feel the air move the hair on my forehead. We are comfortable, and as I sit here, I can't help but wonder why. We do not deserve this comfort. I'm certainly no better than anyone else, yet we were spared. I am grateful for His Grace and His Mercy, yet as Shannon said so well on a post earlier, "And once again, my life and loves are all safe and sound. Warm, dry, fed, and clothed. Once more, I have been passed over, and others have not. Relief mingles with guilt." Thank God that I can feel that.
I was on the phone today with the Red Cross. The amount of people they are helping is simply mind boggling. The amount of people yet to help is mind boggling. The lady said as I got off the phone with her, "We could use any help you can offer us".
Sounds like a really good way to say thank you, just help someone else.