March 2010

I’m just testing a new feature on WordPress which allows us to display pictures as a slide-show.  I wanted to see how it looks through email.  For this example, I used Kara’s school pictures going from 1st grade all they way to 12th grade.

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We had the opportunity to travel during Kara’s 2010 spring break (and for her birthday).  For this excursion, we journeyed to the French Quarter of New Orleans to indulge in Jazz and Blues music, street artists, and lots of Cajun/creole food.  It was a very good trip, with decent weather, good tasting water, and many things for us to experience and enjoy.

We were able to find a pretty good deal on a one-bedroom condo with a full kitchen that was right in the midst of the main activity of the Quarter. There was enough activity within the Quarter that we never had a need to leave the area (although we did one afternoon to ride a trolley and to visit the Garden District) so we were on foot the entire time.

Some of our highlights include

  • Sampling Pralines at Aunt Sallie’s Praline Shop
  • Lunch amidst the bustle of the French Market
  • French Quarter walking tours
  • Live outdoor music
  • Listening to wonderful jazz/bluegrass music performed by Steamboat Willie at the outdoor Music Legends Park
  • Audubon Park
  • Visiting Frenchman Street
  • Wandering the streets at night
  • Sitting in the sunshine along the Mississippi
  • Kara’s birthday dinner at The Alpine
  • Cajun cooking class
  • Eating beignets at Cafe du Monde at 1 AM and again at 11 AM
  • Eating fresh seafood nearly every day in a wide variety of ways
  • The taxi cab ride to the airport (got great cooking tips from our driver on how to make Gumbo “the correct way”)

As usual, we have put together a video with other pictures from the trip.  It is an 18 minute video, but is very much worth the tim to watch!!

In an effort to reduce a consumerist-based lifestyle, Nicolas and I (Kara) are attemping to get rid of two-thousand ten things in the year 2010.  This all began for us by a challenge that someone else proposed to live on just 100 things.  Even if we do not succeed, we will have succeeded by learning to live on so much less so that we can generously give to others.

You may say that eliminating 2010 things is hard to do, and you are right, it is hard.  So we are counting everything individually – for example, instead of “old pictures” being one thing, we will count each picture.  Or if we get rid of a framed picture, the photo, matte, and frame will count as 3 items.  However, basic necessities do not count, like using up a roll of toilet paper or eating a can of soup.   Additionally, replacing items do not count, like replacing a pair of shoes that have worn out.

Hopefully this is an encouragement to those of you who have thought of doing something like this but feel that it is daunting or impossible or that everything is somehow necessary.

You can watch our progress on a webpage we created specfically for this task.  We are already over 200 items so far!