Cousins and Chaos

Cleaning makes me cranky.

I spent the better part of the weekend dusting, polishing, mopping, picking up, putting away and doing laundry. I even managed to vacuum and clean out a few closets. ( I should really do that more often.) I don’t normally clean like this, truly, I don’t. Just ask anyone who lives here. It’s just, that, well this week we are having lots of cousins over, and extended cousins, and their children and their parents and some friends and it is absolutely the most out of control wonderful chaos that was ever known to man. And I wouldn’t trade it for anything. In fact, that is what we call this family gathering – Cousins and Chaos.

I can’t imagine Thanksgiving without my cousins and the chaos.

The Senator can’t imagine life without ‘Cousins and Chaos’. He likes a clean house and he likes to watch me clean it, the stinker! Did I mention that cleaning makes me cranky?

Oklahoma History, Part II

Just a few observations from the Gallery on the swearing in ceremony the other day. Reflected in the photo below are the members at their desks. I am sure they are listening intently. The Pro Tem had to quiet them only once during the session.

Did you know that the during the ceremony, the members gave a standing ovation roughly twenty four separate times. Yes, I counted, I kid you not. Each time someone introduced their family, the members rose to clap. Each time someone finished speaking, the members rose to clap. Each time a dignitary in the audience was introduced, the members rose to clap.

I was glad my children were present. Maybe they will try this at home! See, here they are standing up and clapping fervently.

After the ceremony adjourned, hearty congratulations were extended. Wait, oops. Look at that photo below. The right side of the room is living in the moment, celebrating, pat on the backs, high fives, fist bumps…but, where is the left side of the room? In the past, it was the left who were euphoric, anxiously anticipating yet another legislative session. Not anymore. On this historic day, they were simply, well, just gone.

I guess they have their first taste of what it feels like to serve in the minority. Yeah, not fun.

Oklahoma History

This is the Oklahoma State Capitol. Today, history was made in the marble palace when the newly elected members of the Legislature were sworn into service. In the 101 years of Oklahoma State history, this is the first time members of the Republican party have held a majority of the members in the State Senate. Did I mention they also hold a majority in the House of Representatives? Well, they do. Did I mention how much I love Oklahoma? Where else can you find an oil rig on the grounds of the Capitol building?

This is the entrance to the Senate Chamber. I can’t go through that secret door but my Senator can. It leads to his desk in the Senate Chamber. During session if you listen carefully, you can hear lots of interesting conversations in that reception area. They speak softly and for good reason.

This is the fourth floor of the Capitol Rotunda and what I refer to as the Lion’s Den. The Lion’s Den is where the lobbyists hang out during the legislative session plotting and planning how to pass legislation, kill legislation or resurrect a piece of legislation from the dead. I like lobbyists, I really do. They are nice people… most of the time.

The acoustics in the rotunda are horrible unless you are trying to hear someone’s conversation. Then you just have to hang in the middle and keep your ears open. People have receptions here and get married here. But, I digress. A warning to all you citizens out there – unless you have an L (for lobbyist) branded on your forehead – beware of the lion’s den next time you head out to the Capitol to talk to your legislator. Avoid it like the plague. It’s a feeding frenzy.

This is the Senate Chamber. It looks quiet and peaceful and empty.

This is what the Chamber looks like full of people. On special days like today, family and friends are abundant. So are elected officials from all three branches of government. The Lieutenant Governor was on hand, the State Supreme Court’s Chief Justice administered the oath of office, former State Senator’s were in the chamber as well as many, many campaign volunteers and friends. The Governor was conspicuously missing. I wonder if he overslept?

Below are the new members becoming new members and old members, well, being sworn in to another term as members.

Meanwhile, back in my Senator’s office, the Senator’s children find the contents of his desk much more interesting. And, that my friends, is worthy of its own blog post.

Love, the Senator’s Wife