Monday, December 30, 2013

It's A Dog's Life

I think it is no secret that I enjoy Home Tours. On a recent one, I was a bit amazed by this room. Located where a mud room would be in most northern homes, was what  I would call "The Doggie Spa". This tiny bed....for a tiny dog.

Appropriate decorations on the wall

an even a doggie bath. I thought this all a bit extravagant. Then on second though, it seemed a bit practical.
What are your thoughts?
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Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas

I Hope that you are celebrating the Holiday season with family and friends.
These festive Santa cookies were made by my talented niece Kristin
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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

It's a Compromise

As some of you know, we are building a new house. One thing I wanted, other than the master bedroom being on the first floor, was a formal dining room. Okay, so maybe there were a few other things on my list.
The time has come for making lighting selections, so we spent the good part of a day at this store.

This was Tom's idea of a fixture for the dining room.
and, of course I was thinking more along these lines.

Willing to compromise, we are pretty sure this will be it.  (a computer image) It has some metal for him and some crystals for me. I am hoping it will look grand in our formal dining room.
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Monday, December 16, 2013

It's Almost Christmas

Christmas feels a bit different for us this year. When we moved to north Texas, this past February, we stored all of our belongings, thinking we would buy a house and be settled before summer. Well, we didn't find the place we wanted to buy, and instead bought a lot... and started the slow process of building. Above. is a recent photo of the construction site. Only thing that has changed this week, is the front door is on.

So, we are still in our furnished apartment and our Christmas decorations are all packed away in storage. My sister Polly came to the rescue though with this tiny  (prelit) Christmas tree complete with little fake gifts and being guarded by a couple of festive snowmen. Don't feel too sorry for us, as we are headed to the east coast this week where we will see three of our five daughters. (and five of our nine grandchildren)

I hope that you have plans with family (and or friends) this holiday season. How are you celebrating the holiday?
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Saturday, December 7, 2013

Another Home Tour

Tom and I signed up to be docents for a Holiday Home Tour this past weekend

It was one of the beautiful old homes on Elizabeth Boulevard

The house has been lovingly restored

The photos on the piano are of the orginal home owners. The house was completed in 1915

and it was all dressed up for Christmas

All of the rooms looked very festive

The home was a wedding  gift to this young woman from her parents. A graduate of Vassar University, she had three children in this house, living here for nine years (1915-1924). 

Before marrying in 1915. Mamie, the first homeowner toured Europe coming home with a pet monkey.

The current  home owners dog wasn't concerned about all of this history. He just liked the comfortable sofa!
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Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Seven Ice Cube Orchid Saga

Some of you may remember the blog about the "ice" orchid.-Here I told about the plant that came with this rental apt.I shall try and explain: It actually belonged to Linda, the previous owner of this apt., who passed away last year. Her daughter sold this house containing two apts. that were completely furnished a good friend....and with it came the orchid. Linda loved this plant, and left strict instructions to give it seven ice cubes every Monday.

Well, I did that from February to May when we left for Colorado for the entire summer. I was so worried about the plant when we left....since the apt. would be empty. My sister Nancy did come by once a week until July when she left for the mountains, and I guess then the land lady came by on occasion and watered it (hopefully on a Monday). But, with the summer heat and the air conditioner virtually turned off....the plant suffered.
So, when we returned in October the plant didn't have a bloom on it....

But look closely...since I have been taking care of it for a good month, there are several buds on the end of the stem!
Also look in the mirror. See that piece of art hanging across from it in the stairwell? (sort of like that game...can you find the differences?) Well, our landlord who loves to buy art...seemingly  from Texas artists....hung a newly acquired piece of art, while we were gone. And guess what it is?!
A lithograph of a white Texas born Tommy Tune. Tommy Tune is an award winning Broadway actor/dancer who has also taken up painting.More on Tommy here Okay, that is my seven ice cubes on Monday white orchid story :)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Centerpiece

I would like to show you a centerpiece that my sister Polly made. Yes, I have mentioned my talented sister before. She is the one who made the scones in baking school  :) Actually, she is a very good cook. Are you wondering how she made this? By the way, the fruit is real.
Several years ago, our Dad made all five of us girls this wooden frame with nails in it. (he was crafty too). He had seen an apple tree decoration in a magazine. They also had shown an example of how they made it on a cone shaped piece of wood, that had nails in it. The top had four nails sticking straight up, and the idea was to impale a whole pineapple there. I still have my cone too. We always make my apple tree at Christmas....a tradition at our house. Tom's grand kids love to help.

Well, Polly changed hers up a bit by using a variety of colorful fruit, and crowning it with just the top of a pineapple..Then, she filled it in with holly sprigs from  her yard , and  made the whole thing shiny by spraying it with cooking spray. Amazingly, it will last a long time, especially if you replace any over ripened fruit. In the end, you can sit it out backyard for the birds to enjoy. It certainly was beautiful on our family Thanksgiving buffet.

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Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Fall Hike

Tom and I enjoy hiking in Colorado all summer. So we were delighted to be ask to go in a hike in Ft. Worth with my sister, her husband, another couple ...and Lulu their dog.

They wanted to see the Fall colors  at Eagle Mountain Lake northwest of Ft. Worth, Texas

They knew that a cold front was coming in this weekend, and the leaves would fall off of the trees

The hike is on the north end of Eagle Mountain Lake, where the is a large park with five miles of hiking trails and picnic pavilions. The cactus reminding us we are in the west

I also thought these Juniper berries were pretty

Some of the trees were unbelievably colorful

and the picnic was unbelievably delicious!

Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate this holiday. I hope that you are sharing food with family and friends and that you have a lot to be thankful for. I sure do!
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Sunday, November 17, 2013

A New Bridge

Ft. Worth, Texas had a celebration this week commemorating the opening of a new bridge
This beautiful new bridge (which replaced one that was 100 yrs. old)  connects the downtown area of Ft Worth with the culture area.
On Friday night the bridge was blocked for a special party....right on the bridge
There were bands for dancing and several food stations.

Fort Worth is very proud of this bridge, which not only handles four lanes of traffic, but has both bike and pedestrian lanes. Another of the reasons that we are so pleased to call this our new hometown.

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Sunday, November 10, 2013

Indian Territory

On a foggy cool morning we were driving through eastern Oklahoma last week, which was called Indian Territory, before it became a state. I love getting off of the freeway and exploring small towns. We stopped in the tiny town of Atoka, Oklahoma (population around 3,000), where an old Phillip 66 gas station has been re- purposed  and is now the Chamber of Commerce.

Atoka was named after a Choctaw Indian Chief. Chief Atoko,  one of the signers of *The Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, a treaty between the Choctaw Indian Tribe and the United States Government . The Indians signed over 11 million acres of the Choctaw Nation, which is now part of the state of Mississippi in exchange for 15 million acres in Indian Territory, which is now the state of Oklahoma. A large percentage of the Choctaws were then relocated . Sounds like a reasonable trade to me...until you realize that both areas already belonged to the Indians.

We were headed to Chicago...where we are now. Spending some quality time with my new granddaughter Hannah.

Just had to show you my bee-tiful little bee on Halloween

*I might add that my ancestors were some of the early Mississippi settlers that entered the state in the 1840's....after that treaty.

*all of my genealogy records are in storage, so I do not have the exact date. .

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Sunday, November 3, 2013

Don't Eat The Scones

I couldn't wait to eat these delicious scones, with our morning coffee, that my multi- talented sister Polly  had dropped by (one of the  many treats of living near family).

Polly (on the right), is a successful professional, a talented crafter, short story writer and fabulous photographer.
So, I am not sure how she has also found the time to take cooking lessons. Sometimes, I think some people have more hours in their day than I do! This weekend, she signed  up for a cooking class at an Artisan Baking Co. to hone her skills at making pie crust, biscuits and scones.

Polly had a ball. She was doing a lot of talking and picture taking and didn't hear the correct instructions for  the scones........ which were: "add  three teaspoons of baking soda" She thought she heard " add three tablespoons baking soda." The story has a happy ending though...she quickly sent me the following text::
Have you ever had a cooking disaster?
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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Halloween Luncheon

  Last week,  as I explained in my previous blog, we drove down to Houston for a Rotary Reunion.... Tom also scheduled a dental visit and I was able to accept an invitation.....
to attend a Halloween luncheon hosted by my old friend, Brenda, in The Wine Cellar of Tony's Restaurant.

Brenda and Yours Truly
Actually, she doesn't look that old.

I had just been to my hair dresser, who suggested low lights for my hair. I said yes, although I had no idea what low lights were? Now I do. My hair is much darker...and the jury is still out.

Brenda's invitation said: "Make sure your witches hat matches your shoes". A couple of gals took her literally and wore witch's hats!

I had a wonderful time...a lot more fun than poor Tom (at the dentist) ....and I didn't even keep him company  on the 200+ miles driving  home. Not sure if it was the glass of wine, or that cheesecake... but I slept like a baby!
We are back in North Texas and there are signs of Fall everywhere (a neighbors steps), but we are packing again and are off to Chicago. If our children don't come see us in Colorado, then we go see them in the Fall. We are headed to see my darling granddaughter Hannah (and her family).
If you celebrate.....Have a fun Halloween!
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