Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Flowers and Feathered Friends

My momma and her friend Bob sent these flowers to my hubby and myself today. There's a really cool tulip on the side that doesn't show up well in the photos because it's mostly white. The large pink rose in the front actually smells like a rose too. Amazing.

This is a wren nest on one of our walk way over hang supports. Wrens will make a nest in all kinds of things. We found one once in a shirt pocket out in our tractor shed. And once when we left a plastic Christmas wreath hanging on our back door too long (OK, way too long) a wren made a nest in it. That one didn't end well. A snake crawled up the door and got the babies.) I've also read that wren males make several nests and then entice the female to look them over trying to win her from the other possible suitors. If she likes the nest, she'll pick the male who made it. Click on the picture of the nest and you can see the baby bird peaking out. I love all the beautiful, colorful birds, but I think wrens are my favorite. They just make me smile.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Final Elly Update

We just found Elly's body in a ditch with high grass by our house. We had looked there no less than 6 times, but just couldn't see her until we almost walked on top of her. My hubby and I found her together. I saw buzzards circling across the highway when I came home from the store. That's what made us look more closely in the high grass and low places. We hadn't done it before because there are just so many of them. Now, of course, I have so many regrets about not doing it sooner.


My hubby, our white German Shepherd dog Barkley and I are all showing signs that we're starting to get dispirited about Elly. We've been hopeful, even though we've been brutally honest with each other about the possibilities of what could have happened to her. As each hour passes, hope diminishes. We're becoming more sad, grumpy and restless. It's not really fun at our house today.

Elly had her red collar on when she went missing. She did not have on tags. Of course, I know better than this and that should not have been the case. She does have a micro-chip. I've called the AKC Companion Animal Recovery folks (her chip is registered with them) and the Home Again folks (they made the chip and she's registered with them again now too). They notify vets and pet related businesses within a 25 mile radius and a 50 mile radius, I do believe.

Today, I took fliers to several gas stations, restaurants and one trucker stopped on the side of the road. They were all very kind. One lady at a gas station more than 7 miles from our house said she had seen a large, black dog walking on the side of the highway just a little while ago. I got the direction the dog was headed in and took off. I didn't see hide nor hair of Elly.

Driving around to these different places gave me ideas for other places to go. Of course tomorrow I'll take fliers to the local vets, groomers, the Walmart across the lake and any businesses that were closed today or that I flat out missed. I also realized that some unscrupulous person could have purposely snatched our dog with the purpose of trying to sell her in Canton at the First Monday Trade's Day, which just happens to be next weekend. I think it actually starts on Thursday, but I'll double check to be sure. I also realized that I could put fliers on the cars in the church parking lots next Sunday. I would have done it today if I'd had enough of them with me or time to get more. I'll be calling to put ads in the newspapers also, tomorrow.

If you're reading this and you think of any other places I can try, please leave a comment.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


As I sit here on this rainy Saturday morning, eating cold pizza for breakfast, our Elly dog has been missing for more than 29 hours. My hubby let the dogs out to potty yesterday morning and Elly did not return with Barkley. Hubby later found a hole in the fence.

Elly will leave the yard, but she is a homebody and has always returned very quickly. She doesn't like to be outside for long stretches of time if it's hot or raining. She likes to lay down after her drink of water and cool off. I guess it's all of that thick, black hair.

She has a slight limp in her right back leg at the moment. It started when I was in CA and was much worse then. I think it started on the weekend (when our vet is closed) and by Monday had started to improve, so hubby decided not to take her in to have it checked out. I keep thinking that she and Barkley ran around enough to aggravate that leg and she was limping more. Then she was probably either hit by a car on the highway or someone stopped and picked her up because she looked injured. We have driven up and down the highway, about 7 miles in each direction and don't see her. The problem is that there is a lot of tall grass this time of year because of the wildflowers growing. Most of it won't be mowed until the flowers have gone to seed.
Elly being hit by a car is the worse case scenario, but if we could find her body, we'd at least know what happened. The other possibility, someone picking her up -- at that time of morning, the only people I can think of driving down the highway would be going to work, travelers or truckers. I can't imagine anyone being able to take her to work. If she was picked up by someone traveling or a trucker, then Lord only knows where she is by now.
I've called the Humane Societies around here and a neighbor who rides horses and asked him to keep an eye out for her. We'll call the newspapers and put an ad in and we'll put up fliers. At this point, all we can do really, is hope. I've got a headache from worry and I'm so sad I can't even believe it. She's a loud, bossy thing, but sweet as can be. I love her and miss her. Hug your pets today and give them a little treat.

Friday, April 24, 2009

photo week 3 of 39 -- Candlelight

When I started this, I looked over all of the themes and visualized what I might be able to photograph if the theme came up at certain times of the year. So far, the luck of the draw has not worked to my benefit. Maybe that will work to get my creativity flowing more at some point.
This is a photo of my father as a small boy with his mother's father (my great grandfather Williams). I had hoped to take "candlelight" in a church near Christmas, since that was not the case, I made my own shrine type setting for this favorite photo of these two important men in my life.
My Great-granpa Williams passed when I was 5 or 6, can't remember for sure. I do remember him coming to visit once when my sister and I were very small and I have a photo of him visiting when we were even smaller. There are only two memories I really have of him, other than just knowing that he was kind and loving. He drank his coffee out of a saucer. I asked about that at some point later and was told that it was because he was used to boiling his coffee and it cooled quicker in the saucer so that he could drink it. The other memory is of Granpa Williams saying that he needed to take his teeth out and put them in a glass so that he wouldn't bite us in his sleep! He must have had to share the bed with my younger sister and I. Bless his heart. I can't imagine he got much sleep, since I just tried two nights of that with my own granddaughters in the last week or so. Funny memory.
Next week's photo theme is "harvest".

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Busy Week

I can't believe how many times I've been to Dallas this week or how busy I've been since I've returned home from CA. The good thing about being out and about so much is that the weather has been great and the bluebonnets have been even thicker, seemingly daily. I've put the radio on and sang along in all of my toneless glory. Fortunately, I traveled alone and no innocent persons were hurt by my singing. Believe me, that has not always been the case. Just ask my friends, if you happen to meet them at some point. They'll tell you.

I had my hair trimmed on Monday. I had hoped that it would be long enough after the trim, to cut and donate to Locks of Love. It wasn't. Looks like I have to grow it at least three more inches in order to have it long enough for me not to end up looking like a plucked bowling ball after the cut.

I've had blood work done and been to doctors for a check up. I've been to the dentist for an extremely overdue cleaning, only to find out that I need 5 crowns! I apparently grind or clench my teeth in my sleep you see, and after years of it, there is hell to pay as I have cracked all these teeth that need to be crowned. Somehow, it doesn't make me feel like a queen. There is also a little day surgery coming up next week, so I had some pre-op stuff to take care of. Thankfully, that's all taken care of and I can get back to taking care of the house. I feel like a little spring cleaning before it gets hot. Maybe I'll get some of it done in the next week or so.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Sweet Smell of Spring in Texas

I don't live in a particularly pretty part of Texas. I don't think it's ugly, mind you, just not something to write home about. Or write you about -- normally -- that is. It's home and it's where I live. Now, Texas as a whole, I think it can hold it's own against just about any state, but that's native pride talking. And our land and home, when it's all cleaned up and company ready, shines like a new penny and is as pretty as a speckled pup! But that is definitely not the same as the area in which I live. Despite the fact that it's not spectacularly beautiful, it has a certain charm and I like it.

I was driving into Kaufman to have some blood work done when I spotted this field of bluebonnets in Kemp. I'm sure that field wasn't filled with bluebonnets when I left for CA two weeks ago. I did a little colorful wordplay under my breath because I remembered my camera and also remembered that I had not remembered to change the low batteries. I made a u-turn anyway and went back to see if I could take a few pictures. At the very least, I'd enjoy seeing them for myself.

I didn't remember that bluebonnets had such a nice scent! Oh my! The sun felt so nice. The temperature was perfect. At that time of morning, it was in the low 70's. There was this sweet, soft breeze in the air. Part bluebonnets and part "clean" from all the recent rain washing a lot of the pollens away. It was truly a gift to be there. Wish you had been with me.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Home again, home again

I enjoyed every minute with my grandkids. I loved being with the family. It had been so long since I'd seen them all! I got lots of hugs and kisses. My grandson, JT had a new name for me almost daily. "My my-momma" or Gramma were the most used. CL started calling me some pet name that started with an M that I can't recall at the moment. I've got a call in to her to get it, so I can document it and not forget it again. CV just stuck with Gramma.  *The "M" name was Muriel.

We had a lot of fun! One of the things we did was buy and work on "Wreck this Journal" by Keri Smith. I saw it mentioned on a blog. Unfortunately, I don't remember which one it was. If I find it again, I'll post it. We all loved wrecking this book! It's really mine, so they loaned me crayons and gave me little ideas, which I suggested they use most of on their own since they also requested their own copy! So, I told them I'd get each of them one by the time they come see me in July.

All of that being said, I was extremely glad to get back to Texas. I missed the bluebonnets and my own bed!

The theme for next week....

...was picked by my granddaughter CL. It is "candlelight".


Friday, April 17, 2009

photo week 2 of 39 -- Cookery

Will be posted when I return from CA on Saturday night 4/18 or on Sunday 4/19 if I have no energy when I get home late on Saturday. Please forgive the delay.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Oh, to be the perfect mother and gramma

But that will never be, because I am, after all, human. I am not exactly tactful. Just ask anyone who really knows me. My sister-in-law, Charmaine knows this first hand. So, does my son and my husband  is painfully aware of it. I think this problem of mine comes from not really knowing how to tackle difficult subjects. I'll act like a bull in a china shop and dive right on in, no preface, not paying attention to who else might be in the near vicinity or hearing distance, not even choosing my words wisely. Just getting the words I need to say out and done with. Then Lord help us all! Because it is going to hit the fan with the speed of light and the velocity of a sonic boom before I even realize I've screwed up -- once again. It sometimes takes weeks or months to fix the relationships I've deeply bruised after one of my "little talks", but usually we do end up closer.

The other thing on my mind today is that I wish I was never in a bad mood when I am with my grandchildren. I get to spend so little time with them that it just stinks that I get tired or sleep deprived and grumpy. It hurts my feelings even more than theirs, I think. There should be some sort of cosmic rule that if you only get so many hours in any given year or so, that it's physically impossible to be grumpy around them, even if you are up for 48 hours straight! Your Fairy Godmother will take on the grumpy for you or something. Alas, being human, we don't really have Fairy Godmother's. It just flat stinks. This is one of those things I forget about between trips. Somewhere into the second week or rolling into that 10th or 12th day, the wheels start to come come off. I still enjoy my time with them, but I start to act like the grandmother who lives next door and not the one who is visiting. I'll be a Disciplinarian with a capital D instead of a little d and some how, I'm just not as much fun, I don't think. That makes me sad and I really don't know how to fix it other than come home earlier and spend even less time with them. Don't know that I'm willing to do that.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

My Son

My son. He's a good man. He's a Staff Sargent in the Air Force. He went into the Air Force right out of high school because he wanted to get married and knew it was the only way to support a wife right then. They started having kiddos and ended up with three of them. Their son is autistic. M developed many health problems. He's decided to make the military a career. He's got a lot on his plate for a 28 year old. Many of his friends are only just now getting married or are single. I would guess that many of them, even in these economic times, are living the good life, and still have disposable income. My son probably doesn't remember what that is, if he ever knew. His life, in the military, is always uncertain. He could be uprooted and shipped off somewhere else to live and work or be deployed at any time. Depending on the area of the job, his family may or may not get to go with him. Needless to say, I'm proud of him. I'm proud of who he has grown up to be. Of the father and husband he is. Of the man he is.

M (new picture)

I've been looking, literally for WEEKS, for a picture of M. I have put the ones of her on here when she has just given birth, but that is not what I wanted. Of course now I'm here in CA with her and I can take pictures of her (when she is unaware because she doesn't like having her picture taken). I took several that I liked. This is my favorite so far. Her playing with JT So here it is.....

Friday, April 10, 2009

CV's Award

On Wednesday, my son and I got to go to the school to see CV accept a Spirit Tree award. She didn't have any idea that she was getting this award. She had brought home a note from school on Monday informing us all of the upcoming ceremony and her parents didn't tell her what the note said. When she walked into the room on Wednesday and saw her dad and I, I'm sure she was surprised, but I was so busy looking for her, that I missed actually seeing her, despite her father telling me "there she is".

When they called her name to come up and get her award, she didn't move. All of her friends sitting around her starting telling her to go on up on the stage. CV had that deer caught in the headlights look and just sat for a few more seconds. When the adults also told her to go up, she finally did, but she looked like she was sure she'd be in trouble any second. I was lucky to get the picture of her getting the award. People started walking in front of me just as she got to the stage. I clicked the picture just as someone walked past and was sure I had a picture of them. Then I saw that I got it! I had to wait a few minutes for her look back at us again to get the close up of her sweet little face.

photo week 1 of 39 -- OPEN

CL and CV welcoming me with open arms!

An open doorway.

The open sign at the Airman's Attic. I love the lace curtain.

Next Time, I'm Renting a Car

I've taken three photos to show "open". I hope to post them this afternoon, which for most of you will be tonight, I guess. Of course to be able to post them, my son or daughter-in-law will have to drive me somewhere to buy a thingee that lets me download my photos from my camera to the computer. Fortunately, I've got the proper name written down so that I don't sound like a nut when I get to the electronics department of whatever store I end up in.

I had forgotten what a pain the rear it is to depend on someone else to take you somewhere. That is a definite disadvantage to visiting my son who lives on an extremely large Air Force Base and who has only one car. I told him yesterday, that I will rent myself a car for future visits. I truly hate feeling dependant on someone for my transportation, necessities or fun.

All things considered, the car thing has been one of the few downsides to the visit. We won't go into the others. Personalities are bound to clash at times. After all, you're basically blending two households. I know that my son and daughter-in-law have gone out of their way to make me welcome and at home and believe me, I do appreciate it. I'm trying to make myself useful and be helpful and I know that they appreciate that as well.

The girls start spring break when school lets out today! It's going to be fun for all of us. I plan for us to take walks to the park and take pictures. Each of the girls has tried her hand with my camera. They both love to take silly pictures. In fact, that brings me back to why I started this post. Cutting all the 365 possible themes and putting them in a bag was another pain the rear. So, I've just started having people pick a number for me. My hubby picked the number that lead to "open" for this week's photos. CV picked the number for today which will give us the photo/s for next week -- #65 cookery. CL has picked the theme for the next week.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


My granddaughters are talented. Their talents are very varied too. CV  is an eight year old artist. She draws lovely birds, horses and many other things. CV is in the second grade and reads on a sixth grade level. CL is a 6 year old, very lady like little girly girl who happens to be able to pull up a burp on demand that a trucker would proud of! This is not something I can do -- burp on demand -- and I'm in awe that my granddaughter has been doing it from the age of five. She loves jewelry and dress up clothes, tiaras and other sparkly things. CV likes those things too, but she's more artistic and free spirited. I see her as the athlete and CL as the beauty contestant.

Now, I know that CL has other talents that I have not discovered yet. Just today CV told me that CL couldn't draw as well as her. I told CV that we all have different talents and CL's talents will be different than hers. I so look forward to knowing these girls more as they grow up.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Opening Day -- or Baseball is back!!!

You probably won't believe this. I know I didn't when I realized it. I bought tickets to the Texas Rangers opening day game against the Cleveland Indians after I already had tickets to go to CA. Of course I didn't look at dates for any of this when I was doing it. I was just so excited to get the opening day tickets! Then it hit me. Opening day was April 6th and I was leaving for CA on April 4th. Well crap! I had just spent about $90 for tickets and valet parking. Hubby had no desire to go with a buddy. He's not much of a baseball fan. Can you believe that? So, I started hunting for friends who might want to buy the tickets. Luckily I found someone quickly and they were thrilled to get them.

Then the mourning period for missing the game started. I was sure I wouldn't be able to see the game in CA. After all, I love the Rangers, but they really haven't done all that well over the last few years, so they aren't a big TV draw. In fact, toward the end of the some seasons, they aren't all that big of an in person draw.

So, today, opening day, I decided to see what game I could watch. I had decided to watch the Boston Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays. Hoping, of course, that Boston would get the Sox beat off of them. Can you tell that Boston usually beats the Rangers? And they have (in my very humble opinion) extremely rude fans! I have even begun to like the Yankees and their fans over the Sox and their fans. But, I digress. I turned on the TV and to my sheer amazement -- the TEXAS RANGERS were playing!!!! The Sox vs. the Rays had been rain delayed! I got to see my Rangers win 9 - 1 against the Indians on opening day! Oh what a beautiful day! I think it's the red uniforms. I can't wait to get a new hat! Sorry about the horrible picture. I discovered later that if I had been several feet away, it would have turned out good, but this was the first pitch and I didn't have time to move!

Sunny California

Well, here I am in California, visiting my son, daughter-in-law, granddaughters - CV and CL and my grandson JT! The problem -- because there are always problems in life -- is that I forgot that little gizmo that I put my photo card in, that I then put into the computer to download photos into the computer so I can share them with y'all and email them to friends and family! I am so unhappy about that! I guess I need a master list of things to pack for trips. So, my next two weeks of blog postings are going to be quite photo free. I hate that. I love to add photos to my postings! To me, they are as important as the words. One of the things I'd like to work on is the quality of my photos for my postings.

The other problem is that I won't be able to post my photo challenge photos until I return home! By the way, y'all are more than welcome to join in on the challenge in any way that you would like to. If you do, please let me know that you are doing so. You don't have to do this, of course, but I'd love to see what you photograph, so I'd appreciate it if you would. It would make me happy.

Friday, April 3, 2009

My Photo Project

I was getting no feedback on needing ideas for my photo project. (Really people, where's the love?) So, I googled "photo challenge". Got all kinds of hits for that! Read through page after page and found one that I really liked. Julie Mcleod has a theme list for 365 days of photos on her blog! After contacting her, I've decided to cut them apart, put them in a paper sack (easier to travel with) and pick (at least) one out each week to photograph as my challenge. No telling what I'll get. I am hoping I don't get something pertaining to winter or lots of rain in the middle of August though! That could be really tough in Texas.

I'll pick my theme each Friday and post the photo as soon as I can get it taken. This week's theme will be....#212 OPEN. Hummmm. Lots of possibilities for that.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Another Journal is Born

I've been trying to remember the name of a book I read some time back. I wanted to recommend it to a blog friend. I can't remember the book's title or the author, but I can remember that it was about a young woman in a wheel chair who inherited a flower farm from either her aunt or her grandmother. She couldn't handle the farm by herself so she got several roommates to live with her and help with the farm. I know one of the ladies was a cowgirl and one was HIV positive (she may have been the African American character, but they may have been two separate characters also). I can't remember if she had three or four roommates, but I'm leaning toward four. She was also in love with the UPS guy. If this book happens to sound familiar and you know the name, PLEASE tell me the title. This is making me a little nuts! In fact, in an effort not to go through this again, I'm going to start a "books read" journal.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

No Foolin' -- 49 Things

As I said in an earlier posting, I've abandoned my 101 Things in 1001 Days list because it felt more like a " to do" list than a list of things I wanted to actually do. I've made a new list of goals I'd like to accomplish. The goal to finish this list is my next birthday, January 7th, my 50th birthday, to be exact.

1. Dance -- daily and with joy!!

2. photo project (to be named soon) -- Photo of the week challenge

3. donate hair to Locks of Love -- Did it! 6/4/2009

4. Start a savings account for each of my grandchildren

5. open an etsy shop Done! As of July 2, 2009

6. donate blood (as soon as the anemia is under control)

7. leave a $100 tip for a waitress at a mom and pop type restaurant

8. take a water color painting class

9. ride a Harley

10. learn to knit a scarf

11. plant a red bud tree for CV

12. plant a pomegranate tree for CL

13. plant a fruit bearing mulberry tree for JT

14. make myself a summer quilt (no batting)

15. continue to help organize a Nathaniel Hawthorne reunion XXX I've backed out of this project

16. talk to son and M about a Christmas trip to Santa Fe

17. stay in another haunted hotel with mom

18. pay for a soldiers meal

19. have a 50th birthday weekend with my best friends -- postponed, but still planning
 20. donate a bicycle at Christmas

21. take my grandchildren roller skating when they visit this summer we did it!

22. organize and thin out my Christmas ornaments started

23. write a history on the ornaments that I give to my grandchildren got the books to write it in

24. label, repair, photograph and make a storage bag for each of my quilts

25. get a new ipod it's not an ipod but I got a new mp3 player

26. donate to Kiva done

27. donate to the SPCA of TX or the HSCCL done

28. donate to Habitat for Humanity

29. make a 25 block black and batik miniature pineapple

30. finish Angie's baby quilt working on it

31. somehow get a photo made of myself that I actually like

32. get my feather weight machine repaired

33. learn how to use a chain saw

34. make fiber postcards for Debbie (and Frieda) at the post office

35. decide how to celebrate weight loss goals and post them on my wall

36. put together a dance mix to play

37. take a stained glass class

38. make a "quote" quilt done

39. make a self portrait quilt

40. make a totally abstract art quilt done

41. get the painting done of my dogs

42. adopt a cat XXX Not going to happen, I'm allergic :(

43. go to the Dallas Farmer's Market

44. Go see Keith Urban in July XXX Not going to happen

45. paint my metal swing frame

46. go to the House of Blues for the Gospel Brunch

47. make myself a lariat necklace with my African Christmas beads

48. make myself a totally unique Anglican rosary that is long enough to wear

49. buy a sandal wood Mala or olive wood beads to make a rosary from