Mardi Gras 2015

Well another Mardi Gras has come and gone and I must say it was a totally different experience this year what with being pregnant and sober and all.  This post is also coming to you almost a week after the fact because I got sick on Ash Wednesday and let me tell you, being pregnant and sick sucks!  There is almost nothing you can take for relief.  I’ve been using essential oils, the neti pot, and all of my other favorite homeopathic remedies and I’m just now starting to feel better so…yeah it’s been great.

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Anyway, carnival time!  Nate ended up going offshore and so he was only in for Krewe du Vieux and that’s the one picture we took that night that you see above.  For the rest of the season, I decided not to march with my Bearded Oyster sisters this year as 5 miles was just too much for me and my aching back to think about.  Instead I focused my creative energies into Barkus and my Mardi Gras day costume.  It’s been three or four years since I last did Barkus, the dog parade, and it’s always a great time whenever we do participate.  We came up with the idea for our float last year but couldn’t get out shit together in time to do it.  We went off theme this year (it was Bark-wars) and did a dog spin on a local celebrity, Mr. Okra.  Mr. Okra drives around in his truck selling produce so Mr. Bone-kra, his doggie counter part, drives around and sells the “freshest treats in the hood.”  It was a BIG hit.  The locals loved it and we gave out a crap load of treats.

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Amanda, who owns Queork, was the mastermind behind the whole idea.  It was a collaborative effort in the building of the float.  The first day we put our two wagons together and built a wooden frame for the foam board to adhere to.  I was off the next two days so Amanda did all of the foam board cutting and putting together of the structure.  I then came in and paper mached the edges and did all of the painting.  All in all, it took us about a week to put together.  Amanda’s bulldog, Popeye, played the part of Mr. Bone-kra and Gypsy, Carlos, and my sister’s dog Hank were his veggie friends.  In true Shannon procrastination fashion I was sewing the dog’s costumes together until about midnight the night before and then I had to actually put the veggies on the shirt the next day.  Cutting it a little close but I got it done.

I watched most of the parades that came by the house this year.  I LOVE a parade.  It’s been about four years since I watched Muses, instead of marching in it.  It’s easily one of the most crowded of the parades and what everyone wants is a shoe.  I got two shoes, admittedly both from friends, but it’s so exciting when they hand them to you off of the float.  How insanely gorgeous is the butterfly clog that my friend Jane made?  The handmade throws are where it’s at.  Don’t get be wrong, when you get a big ass string of beads it’s really exciting too, but the handmade throws are what I cherish.

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Mardi Gras day was COLD again this year but fortunately it wasn’t raining like last year.  I woke up with a tickle in my throat and thought about skipping Zulu but it’s not Mardi Gras day with out a Zulu coconut, am I right?  Plus I had made my costume and who knows if I’ll be pregnant during Mardi Gras again?  I’ve always loved the zombie baby popping out of the belly costume and so I did a King Cake spin on it.  I made the king cake pillow out of felt and did the icing in paint and the sugar is glitter, obviously.  I also made my headdress and between the King Cake and that I got glitter ALL OVER the house.  I had the baby parts laying around and I made the little speech bubble out a paper clay.  I had to bundle up so my belly wasn’t quite as prominent as I would have liked but it was still a hit all around.

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I got my coconuts and called it a day.  Until next year, Mardi Gras and holy crap, next year will be baby’s first carnival!  He’s obviously going to love parades as much as his mama does.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

It’s St. Patricks Day and I’m Irish as hell, y’all.  My family has always celebrated this holiday and I love that New Orleans is big on it too!  The weekend’s festivities started off with my favorite Bearded Oyster march of the year, the Molly’s at the Market St. Pat’s parade!  Two of my sisters are erstas as well so we donned our usual white and silver with the addition of some green and orange and partied through the quarter.  Erin’s boyfriend was in town all week and was a shucker for the night!  We did some serious jigging that night!Image

Saturday was the Irish Channel parade which is just the BEST.  It’s also become an annual crawfish boil thrown by some of our friends that live just off of the route.  Heaven, you guys.  Seriously, it’s heaven.  Nate has missed this day the past two or three years in a row now and it was so fun having him here.  ImageImageImageImageImageImage

I’m sitting in my shop now.  It’s a surprisingly chilly day in New Orleans, especially for March, but I’m still rocking my green.  Best outfit of the day definitely goes to my neighbor Peter though.  Once quitting time is here I’ll be heading home for some corned beef, cabbage, and soda bread.  

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Public Art

I’ve been busy!  Can you tell by the lack of blogging?  Well because I’m a glutton for stress, I agreed to do a public art project.  My goal is to have it painted by the beginning of December.  I’m doing it as a collaboration with my good friend Jen.  She’ll be doing ceramic pieces for us to mount onto this oyster sculpture.

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This isn’t my first rodeo when it comes to public art.  If you’ve been following my blog since the beginning then you’ve seen references to the bead dog I painted for the LASPCA’s Paws on Parade.  So far this sculpture has been much easier to paint.  It’s for the Jefferson Parish CVB’s Louisiana Oyster Trail.  What’s cool about this piece is that it won’t go to auction.  It’s already been purchased by The Galley Restaurant where it will stay.  I’ll keep y’all updated on the progress!  Before I go, a couple pictures of Alphie, the Alpha Dog.  

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ImageImageOh and speaking of Alphie, he made it on Buzzfeed!  What?!  

 

Demo Update: We’re Almost Done!

We are SO close to being done with demolition, upstairs anyway.  I’m so happy because it’s messy, tedious (I have pulled hundreds of nails out of baseboards and picture rails), and it takes a lot out of you.  Nate is offshore, so on Wednesday Ben and Bernardo and I did a full day of work as a final push.Image

We started the day out with a trip to the scrap yard.  Six hundred and eight pounds of bulk scrap metal, baby.  Too bad they only pay five or six cents a pound!  Still, it’s like free money and it was my first trip to the scrap yard with out Nate.  ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

Like I said, dirty work.  As you can see we still need to take some doors and their frames out, pull up the linoleum tile, and there are still some window treatments that need removing but all and all it’s looking and feeling really good.  

CHAIRISH the Children Party

As a thank you for donating a chair for the Louisiana Children’s Museum fundraiser, they gift you with two tickets to the event.  At $75 a pop, those babies aren’t cheap and we were thrilled to go!  Nate was on the beach, which was so nice because he usually ends up missing these kinds of things.  My friend Jen of Nola Potter also decorated a chair so she and her date (our friend Sarah) joined us as well.

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It was a fun evening filled with food and drinks.  I think our favorite part was the photo booth.  It wasn’t just your average photo that prints out a strip of photos, it records a 7 second video and then turns your pictures into a flip book.  It was SO fun.  I thought the way the auction was held was a little odd.  There was a VERY small amount of time to bid so my chair went for $180, Jen’s went for $90, and our friend Ally’s went for $80.  I think the LCM could have made much more on each of them but those who purchased them got them for a steal!  I’ll definitely be making something for the festival of tress in December!  

Feeling Nervous

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Two days ago, my neighbor, Peter, walked in and told me it was a sad day. Why, I asked? Because James (my landlord) had called him to tell Peter that he would be showing our building to a potential buyer. What!? I didn’t even know they were thinking of selling it.

Well it’s Monday and that walk through just happened. I had a hard time acting nice. After my initial shortness, I tried to warm up a bit but what will this mean for me and for my shop? If these people do buy, will I be allowed to stay or will I be kicked out? I can almost GUARANTEE you that my rent will be raised, but how much? By nature, I am a worrier. I know I shouldn’t get ahead of myself, but I can’t help myself. I guess we will just have to wait and see what happens.