Tag Archives: Louisiana

Real Life


Trip to Urgent Care (an hour away) – $206.50
Diagnosis – Influenza B
Trip to Pharmacy on way home – 156.32
Tamiflu & Prednisone

Gary on the mend………………….Priceless!

After two days of Gary feeling crummier and crummier, we finally made our way (reluctantly, I confess – going to the Dr. when we’re on the road is really low on our list of things to do!) to the closest Urgent Care we could find. Yes, it was an hour away, and yes, we did wait for an hour and a half in the waiting room (not really bad for an urgent care) and yes, we did wait for another hour + in the examination room. (Did you know they have TVs in those waiting rooms now? WoW! Whatever happened to last year’s Good Housekeeping?) Then there was the hour at Walmart waiting for the prescriptions. And the hour ride home. Almost 7 hours from time of departure to time of return makes for a long day when you’re feeling punk, but Gary did get a couple of naps in during those waiting room spells. And the good news (unrelated to the flu) is that we found gas for $3.18 while we were in Lake Charles!

Wait. Did I just say that gas for $3.18 was Good News? It’s all in the perspective, isn’t it? It’s 3.79 on the corner here in Dry Creek!

We’re praying that we got the flu diagnosis early enough for the Tamiflu to be be effective, and that the predisone works its magic and Gary is on the mend. We’ll keep him away from folks (and there only will be kisses on the forehead from me) for the next couple of days, but we’re still hopeful that we can pack up and hit the road Friday morning. We’ve got places to go, and people to see! 🙂

But if you’ll excuse me, right now I need to go wash my hands!

Wrapping things up, in a random sort of way!

We still have three days left here at Dry Creek, but with the Big Fence Job done it really feels like the project is winding down.  The guys have moved on to building up the berm behind the rifle range and some other miscellaneous maintenance chores and tomorrow we ladies will be working on a 3000 piece mailing that looks like it will keep us busy for the rest of the week.  And Thursday we’ll all be helping with the Community Fish Fry that the camp hosts – about 300 folks from ’round here come for a catfish lunch with all the fixins’.  We get to enjoy the meal and then help serve the guests.  And then, for a final Cajun culture blast, we’ll be treated to a Crawfish Boil.  Been lookin’ forward that for a couple of weeks! So, while there are still busy days ahead, this week has that definite “last week” feel. So as I was taking a look through some of my pictures I thought I’d share a couple of random photos from our time here at Dry Creek.

This is Todd. He’s the camp director and this picture was taken as he was sharing about duck hunting during devotions one morning. (Honest, there was a spiritual side to the devotion, too!) Needless to say, this is a man who takes his duck hunting seriously. As he said, those ducks have to fly past a lot of rednecks before they get to Southern Louisiana, so he needs to make sure he’s good and ready for them! He’s a great guy – and has been a wonderful host to us SOWERS.

This is Bill Linger (blowing out the candles) and his wife Marilyn (on the left). Jim turned 80 earlier this month, and he and Marilyn have worked over 100 projects! We truly have been working with SOWER legends!

This is ALL of us! We snagged this picture one morning before work, and promised ourselves that we’d take another one when we were a bit more “cleaned-up”. Well, one of the couples had to leave due to a family situation, so it looks like this will be our “official” picture. Don’t we look like a hard working crew! 🙂

DCC Flowers
Spring is bursting out all over down here –
When we arrived….
Taken today…..
Even with just my phone camera – it’s easy to see Spring!
Like I said, somebody's got to do it!
This is me, dusting again. 🙂
GDO DryCreek-1
This is downtown DeRidder, about 30 miles from Dry Creek and our closest “center of commerce”. We had a lovely Ladies’ Day Outing one day last week, where we enjoyed the company of some of the staff for a visit to a sweet local museum and a yummy lunch out.
GDO DryCreek-3
The museum had an extensive doll collection and of all the thousands of dolls on display, this one caught my eye –
GDO DryCreek-2
Can you see why?

Oh, and on a slightly more random note – have I mentioned that by this time next week, I’ll actually be hugging that little cutie? OK, so she’s 4 years older and I’ll probably have to catch her first, but still……

Double Saturdays

One of the nicest perks of the “SOWER Life” is that we work 4 day weeks. And that means we get double Saturdays. So while one Saturday is almost always full of laundry and cleaning and other chores, it always leaves one for ‘sploring or just playing. This past Friday  Saturday One was just that!
I had wanted to visit a new SOWER project, Acadian Baptist Center, located about 50 miles away in the town Eunice, Louisiana. We enjoyed a tour of the facilities, reconnecting with some friends that have been working there and meeting the director. It’s a great campus, but I especially loved the pond on the property.
Acadian Bible Center
Guess it didn’t hurt that the azaleas were in bloom, eh?
And this one, of the row of cypress –
Acadian Baptist Center-6
is my favorite! Won’t that be spectacular when they leaf out?
Since we were in Eunice we made a quick stop at the Jean Lafitte Museum (aka Prairie Acadian Cultural Center),
Acadian Culture Center-2
before we headed south toward the Gulf and one of the many National Wildlife Refuges.
We ended up at the Lacassine NWR, and more specifically the Lacassine Pool Loop.
It was a lovely day for a drive, and the drive itself was quite lovely!
Lacassine Road-4
Lacassine Road-1
All along the way were shallow waterways, filled with waterfowl.
Although we saw many egrets and a heron or two, none were close enough to get a really good picture. So, I stayed busy with all of the ducks! Now, I am not a birder by any stretch of the imagination, so feel free to correct any of my identification attempts!
Lacassine Birds-1
Pied-Billed Grebe
Lacassine Birds-2
American Coots
Lacassine Birds-4
Common Moorhen
Lacassine Birds-5
Lacassine Birds-6
Immature white-faced ibis
and my favorite….
Lacassine Birds-8
Greater Scaup (love the blue beak and the bright yellow eyes!)
Most of these are dabbling ducks
Lacassine Birds-7
and most of my shots captured them doing just that – dabbling! 🙂
I also saw this lone bird in a small tree, and I have yet to figure out what it is –
Lacassine Birds-3
Not very spectacular and it almost looks like a cowbird, but it just didn’t seem to be the location for a cowbird. It was fairly large – bigger than a robin, not quite as big as a pigeon.  Any thoughts?
Also caught this young fellow along the edge of a canal –
Can you see him?
There he is! Hiding in the tall grass! I was surprised that I spotted him as we drove along!
We were there for the first day of motorized boat fishing, but even though there were plenty of boat trailers in the parking lots, we saw very few boats actually on the water.
(For you fishermen, there was rumor of a 13# Bass catch! We cannot confirm.)
Mostly, these were our views –

Such a lovely drive!

We ended the day by meeting up with our SOWER friends in Lake Charles for dinner –
Lake Charles-1
(That’s not where we had dinner, that’s Lake Charles (the lake!) 🙂 )
and then it was homeward bound.
Lake Charles-2

Since this was not only our Saturday One, but also the last opportunity (this trip) to do any sightseeing, I’m so glad we got back to that area – it was wonderful to take a more lingering drive through that beautiful refuge and see a bit more of the SW Louisiana countryside.
And what did our Saturday Two look like?


(Honest, I did a bit more than document him working. Honest.)

There are a couple more pictures of Louisiana Drive HERE if you’d like to see them!

Hope you all had a great Saturday(or two) too!

The A Team

That would be the Fence A Team.

Let’s see, just where were we (regarding the Fence Project)? By the end of last week, all the posts (well, except for a half dozen around one of the gates) were in place.
Everyone was Very Pleased.
First job for the new week was installing the top bar all the way around the fence line.
From there it was on to the actual fencing.
Oh, my – there were rolls and rolls and rolls of fencing. But the guys got right to it –
And stuck with it.

And by the end of today (actually just a bit after lunch) IT WAS COMPLETE!
Here’s the whole team –
12 guys (ages 35 – 80), 12 8(!) picture perfect 6 hours days, 2500 ft. of fence DONE!
These guys are AMAZING – and saved the camp about $40,000. Really.
And here’s Gary celebrating –
Yes, it was a good week for the A-Team!

Crawfish Farming

Whether you call them crawfish or crayfish or crawdads or even mudbugs, here in SW Louisiana they’re a Big Thing. Right now it’s prime crawfish season, and while I haven’t actually enjoyed an official Crawfish Boil, I was excited to be able to visit a small crawfish operation in the nearby town of Iowa. (Please, that is pronounced I-O-WAY, doncha know!).
Here are a couple of kids giving each other high fives since they made it OUT of the boat!
And this guy wasn’t taking any time to celebrate – he was just getting back home!

OK – back to the farming lesson.
This is what the crawfish pond/field looks like now.
But long before it looks like this, it’s just a regular old rice field that gets plowed and planted like all the others. And all the while it’s just a regular looking field, those little crawfish are down in the mud (hopefully) doing what all young crawfish should be doing – reproducing. Come September, you flood the field, and while the rice is growing the crawfish are growing right along side. When it’s time for the harvest, you put out your traps (baited with hunks of fish),
give it a day or two and and then get started hauling dem little guys in!
Here’s the boat – not too much to look at, but it does the trick.
The wheel on the back is what pushes the boat through the muddy bottom. As the boat moves down the row of traps, the boat driver/crawfish farmer (Prentiss) grabs a trap, empties it onto the sorting station, re-baits it and puts it back in the pond just in time to grab the next trap.
The crawfish in the sorting station either fall through the slats to return to the pond to live another day, or are too big to fit through and instead get pushed into the purple sacks.
And off to market they will go!
I know we really slowed Prentiss down as he took the time to take us out, two at a time, to watch him in action.
He graciously answered all our questions and it was very interesting see the whole process in action.

Aren’t the fields beautiful?

Here’s a little video I took of Prentiss in action –

Turns out our new friend Prentiss is a pretty talented guy off the boat too –


So, there you have it. An layman’s introduction to Crawfish Farming. (Remember, this is a blog, not a How-to!) Big Thank-yous to our camp hosts, Todd and Aaron, for making it happen, and to Prentiss for taking time out of his harvest to explain the process to a bunch of northerners. Yummmm…a Crawfish Boil IS in my future!

Guess what? There are a couple more pictures of the day HERE!