Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 is coming to an end

So the party's over and now to prep for Christmas but wait..... How about a quick get away? Works for me. So we took off for San Antonio to stay on the Riverwalk but first we stopped at Fredericksburg and Sisterdale Winery. In Fredericksburg we stopped at the sign store first where I bought David 4 large old oil n gas signs, Mobile, Sinclair, Gulf and Texaco for his birthday that happens to be on Christmas Day. He has a place all picked out to hang them but right now he has them tucked away safely in the garage so I can't take a picture of them. Then we stopped at a place called E Way. They have furniture and house hold decor of all kinds. 
It was here that we saw the old time looking camera made of all wood. David bought it for me for Christmas to display. I'm trying to find the perfect spot for it. He also found a Humble gas sign to add to the collection.

May try to arrange my curio cabinet to put it on top on maybe inside with the rest of my camera collection. May have to move the antique sewing machine.

Eventually I hope to have Family pictures and a few pictures of Friends on the wall but I need to paint the frames I have first. I've edited down all the pictures I used to have down the stairway hall at the other house to a few and plan to add newer pictures to the grouping.. Maybe I'll get that done by next Christmas.
Then we headed off to Sisterdale to the Sister Creek Winery where we bought some wine for me and Pamela. weee weeee weeeeeeee. Down the hill we go.... The Hill Country is so pretty. My picture doesn't do the scenery justice. Of course before buying I had to do a tasting of 4 wines to make sure there wasn't something I might like better. 

Next stop The Valencia Hotel. We stayed there last year when all the Bell Gang got together to hang out for a weekend. Very nice hotel but the get away is slightly tainted.... Unfortunately David was feeling slightly under the weather but still wanted to go. 
The Riverwalk was packed with people. Everyone must have had the same idea as us to get away with family and friends and see the lights. Took the next couple of pictures with my phone camera. Not bad not great but you get the idea.

The is a picture just outside our hotel Sunday morning. There's no shops on this end of the river so there's no crowd. From here we went in search of food. Since we slept in but wanted lunch and of all places we ended up at the Hard Rock Cafe. Normally we don't eat at a franchise place but we tend to pick places unique to the area but we decided what the heck. I had their special local burger. It's made with jalapeno cream cheese sauce and a grilled jalapeno on top. Wow and Yum. Depending on the jalapeno it's either warm or really spicy warm and lucky me got the really spicy. A little to much for me so I pulled the jalapeno off so I could eat with out my mouth and stomach being on fire. Overall it was tasty. 
For the most part of this trip we stayed in or close to the hotel. Poor David just couldn't muster the energy to walk around much since his cold was getting the better of him which was fine with me. We'd worked so hard prepping for the party that I think we were both pooped. But the party was a success so it was worth it.

On Monday we headed home to prep for Christmas Eve and Christmas. Christmas Eve we go to my parents for a small get together of us and them. Every year Pamela receives the little rainbow doll that her Mimi found on the roadside one day (of course she gave it a good bath first)and somewhere in or on the doll Pamela finds some money usually.  
Mimi and Poppy also found 
her an Aggie Picture Frame that was really cute and Pamela loved it!
And every year David sits on the same end of the couch and I think I capture him in the same position for every picture.Even though he still wasn't feeling his best he had fun and hung in there.

We began Christmas morning with Pamela in her new Christmas PJ's.

Little Miss Sophie checked out the gifts one by one. 
 She gave up and jumped up on the couch with Pamela and as you can see on the right Dexter just curled up on his bed and went to sleep. Too much going on for him.
We hosted the family Christmas dinner this year. I cooked the usual turkey, ham, dressing, broccoli cheese n rice and 2 lemon ice box pies. Thelma (David's mom)started a tradition of making lemon ice box pies and a hard fudge. Well I was able to replicate the pies but not the fudge. None of us learned how and we never found a recipe. My sister in laws Lynn, Glenda and my mom brought other sides and desserts to share. Everything was so Tasty good!!. We were not in short supply of food that's for sure.
After dinner the kids opened their presents and we all sat around talking and laughing. Someone was always giving someone else a bad time. 
And of course I had my camera ready to capture a few memories. David's brother Gary and his whole family.

This is David's Sister Glenda and her youngest son Kevin.
 The oldest one Phillip didn't join us this year. Hopefully next year.

Pamela thought it only fair that she took a close up of me. I got so busy that I never put on makeup that morning. Oh well. 
Well here's hoping that you're stockings were filled with joy and the spirit of the season and that your hearts are filled with love and glad tidings.

Hope you were able to spend time with Friends and Family and create memories to reflect upon next year. Hugs everyone.

Until next Blog...Hope you had a Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

HO HO HO Merry Christmas!!

 Hope Santa slid down your chimney with ease and brought you happiness and joy.

Hope you're enjoying time with family and friends!

Until next blog.....
"Though I've grown old, the bell still rings for me as it does for all who truly believe." ~excerpt from the Polar Express


Monday, December 16, 2013

Tis the Season...

Warning Photo heavy

Pamela came in the weekend of the 6th so we could go shopping that Saturday trying to finalize our Christmas shopping or at least put a pretty good dent in the process. Well she finished and I have just a couple more items I'd like to get to put under the tree for Mr. K and I think I can finish this week. Cross my fingers anyway. Yours too okay for extra good luck!

Pamela and I put up the tree. No Elf  tree/Christmas bush this year thank goodness. It was a really pretty tree but looked dwarfed in the hall with the high ceilings. LOL. This year David found a tree all by him self when he went to Home Depot His home away from Home. He did really good. Pamela picked us up a new Aggie ornament so it got a good spot on the tree. 
And now I need to put up/out the last of the decorations that I use in various locations. I'm not as good as my friend Linda in Dallas. If you click on her name it will take you to her blog. She is an awesome person with a zest for life. She has one whole wall of Santa's she herself painted over the years and every room is decorated. It is sooo pretty. I don't know how she does it. She is the Harvest Queen when it comes to fall decorating. She's always decorating, painting, crafting or handy work. On the Handy Work side I better give credit to the love of her life LD. These two are models for the energizer bunny.

Last year my Elf was just called Elfie but he wanted a better name so it's now Vinny since he's a vintage elf. He's as old as I am. As always he watched over the the tree decorating, 
hung out on the barn one day, Saturday nite he hung out in the kitchen where are the food was for a Christmas party 

then he checked out my reading shelf and found that I was a naughty reader.

Should I be blushing? Naaa
He only found 2 books because a friend borrowed Book 1 and Book 3 is about to travel down the road to another friend who wants to know how the series ends. 
Obviously I have several naughty friends too. LOL

This morning I found Vinny sniffing the wine corks. May have driven him to it after  reading excerpts from 50 Shades of Grey.

Several of David's co-workers had been asking when we were going to have a party so they could see the house and hang out on the patio but we were never quite ready to host a party. You know how that want things to looks good, there's lots of prep work involved and then how do you choose who to invite. So David asked what if we had a party for the holidays and I said sure. About a week before the party date he got angry with me because I didn't seem excited. Yikes I'm sorry but I always fret and worry internally about will people enjoy themselves, will they get along, will we have enough food, and does the house look okay.... So we invited all his co-workers and team along with 8 of my co-workers that I call the Lunch Bunch, a few of our very closest oldest personal friends, and a couple of family members. Well I got excited when everyone got there, I think everyone enjoyed themselves, no one looked bored and everyone was talking and I personally think the house looked just fine. YAY! Oh we had plenty of food!! Thanks to EVERYONE who contributed a tasty side, a desert or appetizer. And especially to our special Chef. Chef Kris deep fried up a mean batch well I should say batches of chicken. The seasoning was awesome and the chicken was cooked just right. One of my co-workers who doesn't particularly like fried chicken was "Wow this chicken is really good." So all the worry was worthless but the work was worth it.

Now we could have used less wind (20 mph wind gusts) and more heat for a party on the patio. David bought one heater and borrowed 2 from our friend Matt. THANKS Matt. The heaters worked like a charm. After everyone had left David and I were ready to collapse when I saw a present under the tree. 

Apparently a two little Elves put something under the tree. How Sweet! Aren't these bowls cute? Thanks Dave and Susan.

Until next Blog.... May all the sweet magic  Of Christmas conspire  To gladden your hearts
And fill every desire


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Giving Thanks

I give Thanks to God for my family, friends and co-workers. Life is good. Oh sure it has it's ups and downs but that's all part of it.
Wednesday I went to the eye doctor and got a great report. My right eye is better than 20/20 and the left is 20/20 and was told my eyes look very healthy. Couldn't ask for anything better. Other than maybe being able to see better in dim light but I was told not going to happen. No harm in asking. Then with my dilated eyes I ran 2-3 more errands and then headed home to get cleaned up and ready to go out for the evening...
Yep we went out the night before Thanksgiving. Not cooking made it easy to sneak out for the evening. We started out the Thanksgiving Holiday right by going to Puffabelly's to hear Jesse Dayton and Davin James.
They rock! These boys have known each other for a long time and even roomed together so put them on stage with a guitar in their hand and you'll be provided some great guitar pickin and entertainment..

Pamela came in for Thanksgiving and was able to stay until Friday. 
For Thanksgiving we went to my sister in law
Glenda's home. She had set the most beautiful table this year.  My picture doesn't do it justice. And there was plenty of food. 
Everyone did a great job of prepping food and Glenda's turkey was 
really moist and juicy. 
It was all yummy delicious.  

Pamela and my mom head towards the food line. 

My sister in law Glenda our hostess, My niece Shelby and Pamela
I hope everyone had a blessed time with family and friends on Thanksgiving. I know I did. Time to go back to work. Darn. I have enjoyed my time off and still have plenty of things to get done before this year is over... 

So until next blog... The fragments of our lives and make. Out of life's remnants, as they fall. A Thing of Beauty, after all. ~Douglas Malloch~


Thursday, November 28, 2013


                                     LET THE SHOPPING BEGIN                   

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Baby It's Cold Outside

Wow can’t believe our weather. Normally we’re running our AC but not right now. This past weekend was a stay inside kinda weekend. It was wet and cold. Cold for Houston.  Saturday and Sunday was loaded with football and unfortunately none of my teams won. Grrrrr Now the Saturday after Thanksgiving is suppose to be in the 70's. And I wonder why I have sinus issues or get colds........

So I've been to a Baby Shower of a high school friend 
and fellow water polo player. 
Kelley is the cutest Little Momma to Bee. Got to see several folks I hadn't seen since Kelley's wedding. In fact I think that was the last time I saw Kelley
but I keep up with her on the social media Face book.
Then following weekend I went to a bridal shower for my daughters long time friend from elementary school. It's hard to image these girls growing up and getting married and having babies but it's happening.  It was a really nice shower. Here's the beautiful bride Marlaina with her beautiful Grandmother and Mom.

Since the quilt retreat I have been in sewing and pick up mode. Houston she found the floor again in the sewing room. I had tubs, baskets, fabric, and paperwork all over the floor. I had a path from the door to my desk and and even narrower path to my sewing table. I’m trying to reorganize my shelving and put things away. Of course that doesn't mean it will stay that way long or that I’ll be able to find it when I want it but it’s worth a try.
I managed to make Dexter a new place mat for his food and water bowl. I made it long enough so when Sophie comes to visit her bowl will fit too. Nothing fancy and not perfect but it looks much better than the white lament placement he's had for 16 years.
I also managed to complete a Christmas tree skirt for
 Pamela. Hope she likes it.  Dexter likes it. Nothing fancy or quilted but It does has a fun side with penguins and a more trendy side of black and white should she ever feel the need for a more trendy type skirt. I’m not sure trendy is the right word or should I say fancy, whatever.  The ruffle is toile with sparkles. Well those sparkles are glitter and guess where it’s at now.  ALL OVER THE HOUSE! Everywhere I walked glitter fell which was no good for the husband. He was rather upset because we had the all the tile floors cleaned the day before. 

And speaking of the tile.....OMG my tile and grout look like NEW. Glitter will vacuum up but not fast enough for David. I can’t mop for a week.I have used a swifter but glitter kept appearing off my clothing.

I still need to get two quilt tops quilted and work on 2-3 other quilts plus throw in some other sewing projects and I may actually put a dent in my stacked up projects.

So until next Blog post....... I'm a quilter (sorta) and my house is in pieces.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Did someone say Quilt Time?

First I've been properly scolded for not posting sooner but I haven't had much to write about. I know very unusual seeing how David and I are taking advantage of being empty nesters to the max lately. Friends of ours had a Halloween party that I went to while David went fishing with his buddies from high school a couple of Saturday's ago.  
And Pamela went to Las Vegas that weekend for long time friends
girls weekend before she gets married. L-R My daughter, Christine, Marlaina Bride to Be and Diana the mother of the bride. What happened in Vegas stayed in Vegas. LOL

And here I am with a quilter's dream of quilts. Well a quilter wanna be. So begins my quilting adventure.
A week ago Friday I took a day of vacation and went to the Houston International Quilt Festival. It's always so overwhelming when you walk into the George Brown Convention Center. The minute you walk through the doors you're hit with the buzz of excitement, color and textures galore. You can't ignore all the vendors. Row after row booth after booth of vendors with sewing, quilting gadgets, beads, lace thread, scissors, other types of cutting tools, tables, cabinets and scarves oh my. The list can go on and on. 

The look of the quilts this year was more on the artsy side which is okay 
but I still wanted to see
some of the more traditional quilts. 

My favorite display was the cow theme Play on the word

I did run across a guild member quilts hanging in the show. Three Cheers for Lyndy Spenser. How awesome is that?

 Several guild members were working in a booths at the show selling quilting machines or promoting Quilts of Valor.
If you want to see all my pictures from the day you can click here.

Now for more fun I became a Bossy Pushy Organizer of a Quilt Retreat of my own. I went to my first retreat last year and I loved it and I wanted to go on another one so I decided to organize one of my own. I sent out an email to many many folks to see if anyone would go with me and finally got my minimum number to go. The retreat was Monday through Wednesday but everyone decided to take advantage of an early
check in at Retreats by Margie in LaGrange for a small fee and drove up on Sunday. Some of us took in the Texas Quilt Museum where each quarter they feature a different type of quilt. This quarter it was Star Quilts. Then we went next door to the Quilted Skein where we found lots of bright and colorful fabric. Imagine right? And one wall was full of every color and type of yarn a knitter could dream of. I'm not a knitter but I was in awe of all the yarn. By going up on Sunday it gave us extra time to set up before the retreat actually began. 

Once everyone had arrived the girls corned me and hand me this bag.
That bag was filled with all kinds of goodies as a 'thank you' for organizing the retreat. I couldn't believe it. This was so awesome and sweet. What a great bunch of girls to spend time quilting, laughing, talking, and maybe enjoy an adult beverage or 2... We even managed to watch a movie that Monday and Tuesday evening. 

 No one wasted any time getting to work on an unfinished projects.That's why we came right?  Tuesday night some of us were having such a good time we were up until 2am quilting and laughing. 

One thing I didn't do and meant too was have everyone introduce themselves and 
  • tell something about themselves
  • and how they knew me and for how long
Of all the girls Denise is the one I've know for 21 years, and have been in a book club with 16 1/2 of those years. She is the one who helped me get started in quilting. Her mom Dolores came and helped Denise by sewing the binding on a quilt and some cutting for a Christmas stocking.
At the Guild Quilt retreat last year I met Janet, Cindy and Judy. They belong to the guild but with 300 members and me usually running around taking pictures I might not have ever met them. Janet also blogs where she shows off her many talents. Go check her out by clicking here.
Deborah is quilter/fabric artist. I know there's a better description but I'm drawing a blank. She dyes her own fabric. I met her at the Quilt guild and eventually by accident became her neighbor. 
Pat worked with me at the Middle school I worked at then she moved over to our central office, retired and I got lucky enough to take her job. She is also in the guild and we went to the same quilting bee.
Donna V. - I met her at the quilt guild and found out she actually works right down the hall from me in the district. And we've been friends ever since.
Then there was Sandy. She is from College Station. Sassy little thing trust me. LOL I met her on a Quilt Shop Bus tour last year where we hit 6 shops in two days in SW Texas. She happened to be sitting behind me when she noticed what I was reading in between shops.... Fifty Shades of Grey. Of course that got a conversation going and a friendship was formed. We email back and forth and she follows my blog.
And there was Donna M. well some of you may recognize her from Donna's Lavender Nest blog. I had never met her in person but knew she was a quilter and lived somewhere not too terribly far from Houston area so asked if she'd like to join us and her answer was Yes. Oh and guess what her favorite color is.....  So glad she made it and that I got to know her.

I had invited a wide diverse group of ladies but we all had one thing in common we love the act and art of quilting. I had ladies that I had either known for a long time or for a very short time if at all. Most of them met first time. 
We all had a blast! The fabric was flying and the machines were
humming. I was pleased that everyone got along and it was like we all had been long time friends.
Sandy and Pat were the first to finish a quilt top the first day.

We even had a special guest Ralph who wanted to join us at the retreat. But I told him he wasn't allowed inside and he might cause someone have a heart attack.
So he stayed outside on the porch. 

I was able to finish one quilt that I can't picture here yet, started 2 more, sewed up a pretty grocery bag holder to hang in the pantry for my daughter, complete my 2 year and 15 minute table runner, okay it was suppose to be a 10 minute table runner but it took me 2 years and 15 minutes. 

And I'm trying a new technique on how to make a double diamond book mark. I can't show the quilt picture of the finished quilt top until I get it quilted and mailed to the intended. But here's what I can show you if you Click HERE to see other pictures from the retreat

Check on Donna M.'s oops that's Donna V's quilted posted card that she was working on our last day. Looks a lot like the retreat.

Here's everyone before we headed home. Thanks Jim for taking the picture for us. You and Margie made our stay awesome.

The retreat was homey and our dinners were very tasty. 
Thanks to the girls we had plenty to eat for lunch and Thanks to
Janet who decided to become our Chef one morning and whipped up a yummy breakfast.
We enjoyed ourselves so much that we are going to meet up again in the Spring for another retreat. Plus we added a day. Gives us more time to get into trouble and complete more projects.

And guess how I ended my vacation. Got home just in time to head up to Main Street Crossing in Tomball with David to listen to Max and Heather Stallings. Love listening to Max sing. Heather chimes in with her alto voice and plays a mean fiddle.

Couldn't ask for a better ending.

So until next Blog....“There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate.  ~Linda Grayson