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11th August 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

9th August 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

8th August 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

7th August 2017

7:36pm: One more cup of coffee...
I've got the White Stripes eponymous debut LP on the turntable and coffee next to me. We had another Screen Free Sunday, leading me to post on Monday evening. April made a delicious breakfast scramble from the Pioneer Woman - I was able to pick enough cherry tomatoes from our garden to include. We haven't had nearly the warm weather this Summer as we have in the past, which has been very nice, I assure you, but it means vegetables that were growing like mad a couple years ago have been much slower to come around this year. Fresh, homegrown tastes so much better than store bought.

The annual Coast Guard Festival was last week in Grand Haven. I've posted many times about it, sometimes with loathing, but I've made my peace with it. We actually went down last Tuesday because the local Elks club hosted a food truck rally and I was able to have some of the best BBQ I've ever tasted. We avoided the hooplah of the parade and carnival on Saturday by getting out of town. April and the kids went to Dave & Buster's while I went to a record store in Grand Rapids. There I bought two White Stripes LPs (thus completing their discography on vinyl in my collection) and All Night Long, the quintessential Junior Kimbrough album on vinyl. We went out for Mexican food here in town that night and were one of only three tables in the place. I raked and mowed the lawn in the late evening while watching people saunter toward downtown for the fireworks (we live nine blocks away and people parked in front of our house and three more blocks down the road).

Yesterday was a good day, we went to a pot luck for lunch clebrating Madison and the kids who went on the mission trip a couple weeks back. A slideshow of the week's pictures was on a big screen, kids shared meaningful and humorous stories, and we were so proud to learn the staff there spoke so well of our kids and their behavior and work ethic.

Work came crashing on me today, but it's been made better the last two weekends by not having to work a second job. I miss a few of the people at Home Depot and the work was good, but man, is it nice to have two full days off!

A new blog post: http://brettbilledeau.blogspot.com/2017/08/musical-ghosts.html?m=1

I hope everyone is doing well. Take care. 

28th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets
  • Thu, 22:17: Listening to #RoyClark, who deserves far more recognition than modern "country music" gives him. So much talent it's ridiculous.

26th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

18th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

16th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

12th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

11th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

9th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets
  • Sat, 18:37: Listened to #ElvisPresley's "How Great Thou Art" album of all Gospel songs today. Some of, if not the, best music he put out post-1958.

6th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

4th July 2017

12:00pm: My tweets
8:35am: Happy Birthday, America!
Or as Her Majesty might put it:

Image may contain: 1 person, hat

I couldn't stop giggling when April shared that the other day so I had to as well :)

I wrote a blog post for some great Americana albums to put in the CD player / on the turntable for the holiday (or any time):
http://brettbilledeau.blogspot.com/2017/07/great-americana-albums-for-americas.html

This is Day Four away from Automatic Spring and I feel decompressed. I worked Sunday at Home Depot and have to put in six hours today but I'm not worried. Management is grilling out for us for lunch and it's 10:00am to 4:00pm, a perfect midday shift. We're going over to my folks' for a cookout tonight, too.

Dad is going through a rough patch health-wise again. His lungs are giving him trouble and he spent time in the E.R. again on Saturday. Any well-wishes and good vibes sent his way are greatly appreciated.

The weekend has been mostly good, only brought down by the limitations April has from recovery. We were hardly able to do anything Saturday when we dropped Elijah off with his other dad in Grand Rapids, but I did manage to shop in Trader Joe's. She had a follow-up appointment yesterday and all is going well, thankfully, it's just that she's got no stamina yet so even walking a couple blocks downtown in Holland yesterday was taxing to her. We had coffee and desserts at J.P.'s Coffee House before heading to lunch at the Curragh Irish Pub Restaurant. It's a nice enough place but a pub, well, it is not. The breakfast fry-up I had was decent, though.

People have been shooting off fireworks all weekend here, which has kept Daisy riled up. It's illegal here in town more than 24 hours from a holiday but the police don't treat it as a serious offense. I can understand some smaller ones, but people are launching mortars, something I find rather dangerous on top of being annoying. I like fireworks, don't get me wrong. But I haven't gone to the display on the riverfront in years because I just can't take the huge crowds anymore. Every year I try and talk myself into it but I know I won't go.

I hope all is well. Take care. 

28th June 2017

4:58pm: I'll Remember You...
I have Elvis' Aloha From Hawaii album on the stereo upstairs as I'm typing this mid-week update. My second (half) pot of coffee is made, too.

I took a half day from work yesterday and all of today off because April had surgery on her sinuses. She was supposed to be under the knife by 1:45pm but, as is typical of our local hospital, she didn't get until after 3:15pm. It went very well, though. Her recovery was a bit rough thanks to being given several pills on an empty stomach but we finally made it home around 7:30pm. Her friend Andria made us a chicken pot pie so we didn't have to cook for dinner which was very nice.

She woke up feeling better than expected after a solid nights' rest, although the day has been touch and go, but that's normal for what she had done. Her face is a bit sore but nothing outrageous. I'm just very grateful she's done so well.

I've puttered around the house, watering the lawn / garden and painting cabinet doors for our kitchen. The previous owners took them down when re-painting and never replaced them; over two years later we've decided they should go back up, so I'm painting them to match the rest of the kitchen from when we re-painted late this winter.

I finally got two records I ordered from discogs.com a couple weeks ago - Raw Delta Blues by Son House and The Alan Lomax Recordings by Fred McDowell. They've turned out to be my two favorite acoustic Bluesmen and I was excited to get the albums. The former is comprised mostly of 1941-42 recordings from when Son was arguably at his peak and the latter are the first recordings from 1959 when Lomax took his "Southern Journey" to record unknown artists from Texas to Virginia. If you're interested at all in old acoustic Blues, I cannot recommend them highly enough.

Two more work days and then it's four more off from Automatic Spring. I do work Friday night and both Sunday and Tuesday (July 4) at Home Depot but tha's okay. Having had nearly two weeks off, I'm refreshed atready to go back. It was getting too much but I enjoy the job itself.

I hope everyone's good halfway through this week. 

27th June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

26th June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

24th June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets
  • Fri, 16:35: Beyond disappointed, @raywylie Hubbard is coming to Grand Rapids and tickets sold out before I even heard about it. This really sucks.

23rd June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

18th June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

4th June 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

29th May 2017

12:00pm: My tweets

24th May 2017

12:00pm: My tweets
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