Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Napkin

Well, no one asked me if I folded all of those napkins.
Remember I was going to fold twenty three of these for our Christmas party?

and...I guess everyone was too nice to tell me that I had done it wrong. Look at this, compared to the top one. The flaps should be turned under. I finally figured it out. That's okay, because instead

I used these paper ones.
Maybe next time I will try the others. I think instead of a knife for the trunk, maybe a candy cane and a peppermint for the star on top. It would be a lot of work but, after all, Rose from Oz  has so generously offered to come and help ....oh Oz is short for Ozstralia (which we apparently call Australia).

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Day Break

Yesterday morning I was making coffee, and  I saw a glow in the sky while standing at the kitchen sink. So, I stepped out onto my little morning porch.
To the east the sun was coming up. I thought well, this is lovely.... I will just drink my coffee out here. Didn't stay too long though. We have had a cold front, and it is very chilly here in north Texas! Our mornings have been hovering somewhere in the thirty's the last few days. How is your weather?

Monday, December 29, 2014


Our youngest daughter, and husband are moving this weekend, so we are keeping little two and a half year old Hannah for four days. I had to laugh at the number of shoes her Mother packed for her,
mainly because Hannah's Mother has always had a love affair with shoes. I personally think she is now passing that along to her little one. What is that saying "The Apple Does Not Fall Far From The Tree".

Do any of you have a love affair with shoes? (a nicer way to ask instead of: do you have a shoe fetish)?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

The Surprise

Back in the Fall, I ran across a Picasso numbered print that I fell in love with. I really really wanted it and whined about it on this very blog. I kept reminding myself (and so did my husband), that we have many needs (with this new house), and shouldn't give in to wants. Oh, but it was so neat, a self portrait (sketch) by Picasso, and fellow artist Jaume Andreu Bonson in Paris, late winter of 1901. You could see the Eiffel tower faintly in the distance. I have to confess, I did go back a couple of weeks later, and thought,...if it is still there that means I should buy it. Sadly, it was GONE!
Well, the reason it was gone is because of this blog. One of my sisters read my post.... whining about it, and contacted two of my daughters. She then went over and bought it so that they could surprise me with it for Christmas! Talk about shock! I was floored.

Thank you sister Polly and daughters Stacy and Katy.
I love it.

Saturday, December 27, 2014


I hope that all of you are having a wonderful holiday season. I had to laugh today. All of the television commercials now...... have a theme of weight loss. I wonder why?
I promised to show you the dessert table from our family Christmas party. My niece Kristin who is not a professional baker, but teacher, made these delicious cookies.

Then there was this tray of goodies. Yes, I made a couple of these. Okay, as if that weren't enough... there were also a couple of cakes and ice cream ....I don't know about you, but I have gained five pounds just looking at this!

Remember, I was  so concerned about the six children that were coming...and bought little cups with lids. Well, here at five of the six at the kids table. They were so careful, and no one spilled a drop of anything.

I think this though, was my favorite part of the whole evening. All twenty three adults and six children gathered around the kitchen island, holding hands...pausing to give thanks. A feeling of gratitude washed over me. It is having each other that is the true blessing.

*thanks for the photos Polly

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Happy Holidays

I have been busy enjoying my family this holiday season...but wanted my blogger friends to know that I wish you the happiest of holidays...You have been an important part of my life this year.....
In our house we make cookies for Santa Claus
Meet my helper...two and a half year old Hannah, who had a ball until she fell off of that little stool she was on!
She is fine...and the cookies are ready. Hope you are ready at your house too.

Celebrate!....and stay safe...Janey

Sunday, December 21, 2014


I don't know about you, but all of the rushing about.. is almost over around here. All I  need to do is pick up fresh fruits and veggies closer to the holiday. To tell the truth I have settled into a feeling of calm.
I have even been playing around with napkin folding. I saw this trick on the Internet (that is supposed to resemble a Christmas tree). Problem is, I have twenty three adults coming. I do have twelve green napkins and twelve red I may just do this. I need a bit of practice though. Wonder if I could get Tom involved?...I'll let ya know.

I also panicked (I do that a lot), when I realized I had six little ones coming, and a living room full of new furniture. So,I went out looking for Santa Claus cups with lids...but gave up after three stores. These will have to do. I am making  a kiddie a very light color!

I wish you were here to help me cook! I made fudge this morning, and will also make some orange/coconut balls on Tues. The day of, I will bake a pork loin coated in ground peppercorns, shredded parmesan cheese and rosemary. ...Along with it I will heat up a honey spiral sliced  ham; both for making little sandwiches on soft rolls. A pasta salad and fruit salad on the side. My sisters are bringing the appetizers. I will  make sure and photograph the dessert table for you :)

It is our custom to all (I have four sisters in the area), get together Christmas night....after all of the festivities in our own homes, or at our in laws, is over . It will all be very casual (except for my fancy napkins). Our daughter number five is in charge of figuring out some games to play. She is skiing in Aspen this weekend...I am keeping my fingers crossed that she doesn't get snowed in!

Are you busy this weekend? Tell me about your preparations!

Friday, December 19, 2014


I have been doing a lot of pitching and tossing, since we moved into our new home....Isn't it amazing the things we hang on to? I found a stack of old letters that my Dad had written to me, and sat down and read them...They brought tears to my eyes...but that is another long story.

A fun thing I found, is an old suitcase full of memorabilia of when I was an airline stewardess. Yes, that is what we were called back then. I flew for a Local Service Carrier, Central Airlines (in operation from 1949-1967). Central flew in the six central states of the U. S. I was based in Ft. Worth, Texas, but actually lived in Dallas.
This was graduation day (from Stewardess Training) July of 1965. Yes, there were only three in our class. That is me on the far right, with my natural color hair. Isn't it amazing that my hair, instead of turning gray, has turned blond? (believe that and I have a bridge to sell you). I wish I could identify everyone in the picture. I do know the man on the back row, Bud Herring (1923-2011) President of Customer Service.

 The next gal was assistant Chief Stew. I am struggling for her name. Lady in black is Thelma Doyle...There is no way I could forget her. I have never been so frightened of any human being in my life. I need to dedicate a whole blog to her!
The gentleman behind me is Lamar Muse (1920-2007). He was President and CEO from 1964-1967. Lamar had a long career with many carriers. I feel sure that some of you may have heard of Southwest Airlines?....Well, he was a co-founder, President and the early days.

Nancy, on the front left was the dearest of friends . She died suddenly of an aneurysm in her early fifties,while playing golf. Nancy actually taught me to play golf. Jeanne, in the center...who had beautiful red hair, is still flying.

Central Airlines merged with the Old Frontier Airlines in 1967. Then Frontier was bought by Continental Airlines, which has now become part of United Airlines. Last I heard, Jeanne was so senior that she was only working a very few days a month. I actually was a passenger on her flight a few years ago (1999) Paris to Houston. She was serving me a drink, and I had a deja vu moment. I had not seen her in 31 years. You can't imagine the shock when we realized how we knew each other!!

Thanks for going down memory lane with me. Wonderful years of my life! Oh...
To prove I hang onto important things. This is the uniform I had on in that picture :)
Do you have a memory box?
* Word Verification always been turned off on this blog. I have had a complaint that it is happening.? Has anyone else experienced this?

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Brick Wall

Our new winter residence in Fort Worth is in the city. Having always lived in suburbia, we are thrilled by our new location. Our house is what they call a zero property line home.... Which mean our neighbors live just ten feet from us on both sides. One of the houses, is still being constructed, but their wall ..near our entrance is finished.
Our place is the gray place to the right. We are going to ask our new neighbors if they mind if we landscape our side of their wall.
Our landscaper said he can arrange vines to grow in this pattern on the fence, giving us some greenery , and a more pleasant view when we come out the door. Stay tuned.

Linking today to : Good Fences

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


I went to lunch yesterday with two girlfriends. No, I still don't have any "go to lunch friends" in my new town. These are two gals that also spend their summers in the little mountain town that we do, and happen to also live in Texas in the winter. We sure did have fun! I decided instead of photographing our food...It would be fun to show you our jewelry.
Kerry, who happens to be the youngest of the group (and very stylish I might add) Had on an eye catching necklace with three (faux) diamond  broaches. I think she said it was from J. Crew.

Betty, who loves anything vintage, had a custom made Christmas tree pin by San Antonio designer. It is made using tiny antique buttons....sorry about the blurry photo.

Then there is plain Jane (me) with my little jingle bell pin from Walmart. You know, we don't all have to be alike to be friends! Merry Christmas

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Concert

We attended a  Christmas concert at the beautiful Episcopal Church, that is just down the street from us.
Yumiko Endo Schlaffer was a visiting harpist, and the  evenings star performance.
She has a masters degree from the prestigious Julliard School of music New York, and is the  recipient of numerous awards, including first Prize in the Japan International Harp Competition. She was also honored to be asked to perform at the Imperial Palace for Her Majesty The Empress and Her Royal Highness.
She is an extraordinary harpist with a long list of credits, and a sweet very approachable young lady. Thanks for posing for my blog Endo.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Party Time

This is the time of year when your calendar is usually full. Although, we are new in town, and don't know a lot of people, other than family. So, we were very excited to be invited to a party this week.
Summer friends, who are neighbors in Colorado,  invited us to their holiday party here (in Texas).
Betty, in the red, is the gal I recently wrote about.....featuring her wreath made of wine corks.
Last night was Saturday ..and usually a very social time in the month of December. ...but again there was nothing on our calendar ...since  are the new kids on the block. The Kimball Art Museum was having a party free to members (yep, we joined). Appetizers, a cash bar, band and  tours on the Impressionist Exhibit (from the d'Orsay  in Paris). So, we dressed up, put smiles on our faces, and braved the crowd. Tom and I laughed that these were the people who weren't invited to any other parties (us included)
and there really wasn't a crowd, although very few seats. I kept offering seats at our table to strangers looking for a place to sit. Met a young couple who had also just moved here: they were nice to talk to. Two friends...ladies about our had grown up in Poland...and another couple that sat down, but weren't interested in talking. 
This has been a very unusual holiday season ...But, we are going to get through it.
Alone in a sea of faces.... Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 13, 2014


I don't know about you...but I am a very confused hostess. Use to you  had one, maybe two, showing up at a party that were vegetarian. To further confuse matters, some of those vegetarians were also vegan.

Then there was the low fat crowd followed by an army of gluten free folks....Now, there are folks who only eat Paleo. I have been scouring through recipes...and I am stumped. Do I just serve a plate of apples...Wait is it Paleo's  that don't eat white?...isn't an apple is white inside. Me oh my, what is a hostess to do?!

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Perfect Tree

Are you tired of putting up your Christmas tree every year...year after year?
The perfect tree for all of my very literate friends!

as seen on facebook

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Adobe Wall

It is not unusual  to see adobe walls surrounding homes in our neighboring state of New Mexico,
but not so common here in Fort Worth, Texas. These walls are high, and you can't even get a glimpse of the house on the other side, which I guess is the purpose. I do think it makes for a rather pretty entrance though.

Linking today to :  Good Fences

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Crafty People

I am sure you know some, or maybe you are one yourself? I am talking about crafty people.
My friend Betty made this pretty wreath out of wine bottle corks. Betty is also an expert knitter, a fabulous cook ...can climb a mountain, and or drive a four wheeler over it. Let's not forget she can entertain like Martha...oh and you don't want to go fishing with her either.....Did I mention she also likes wine.
Then there is my sister Polly, who whipped this up in one evening. She is also a great cook, entertains with ease, is an expect photographer, and a sleuth of a bargain shopper. Known for her humorous short stories....In her spare time, she is writting a book.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Sweet Voices

I don't seem to shop much at malls anymore. I prefer little specialty shops, and do a lot of buying online; but I did run by the Mall yesterday. Yes, I ran, or at least walked fast after parking my car. Everyone seems to be in a hurry around here, actually just short of  a panic. I even saw a sign that advertised: For You Last Minute Shoppers' Hey guys ....this is NOT last minute!.....and then I heard music.
 and it stopped me in my tracks. There was a children's choir singing Christmas music. Such pretty little voices. The music not only caused me to pause, but brought back memories of my own children preforming at this time of year. Are any of you feeling rushed this time of year?

Sunday, December 7, 2014

I'm Back!

Sorry, I haven't been posting as usual. We had an unexpected early arrival.
Little Miss Abigail weighing in at 5 lbs. 7oz arrived one month ahead of schedule.
Since she arrived in North Carolina, Tom and I hit the road.
I am happy to report that mother and baby are doing just fine.So is Dad...they are all just a little sleepy.

We sure do have a lot of grandchildren. Tom has eight and I have two.
So together we have ten. Five boys and five girls.
Oops I almost forgot, Tom also has three great grandchildren.
We feel blessed.

I will try my best to get back to blogging....but I am about ten days behind schedule this holiday season, and playing catch up.. I will bet that you busy this time of year too?  Janey

Thursday, December 4, 2014

View from the Fence

The welcome center at Vicksburg Mississippi, sits of a bluff above the Mississippi River
and through the fence you can see the river below, both the vehicle and train bridges, and a display of Civil War cannons.The old Vicksburg bridge, on the right, now has a single rail track across it. Back before 1998, both vehicles and trains  shared this bridge.
 For a large selection of other fences from around the world go to: Good Fences

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Magnolia State

If you are driving through the state of Mississippi, you will surely notice the magnolia trees. They are along the sides of the road, and even in the median in places.
This evergreen  tree ,with it's dark waxy green leaves is the state tree . It has large white flowers on it in the Spring and Summer, that are not only pretty, but fragrant.......and the state flower.

My great grandmother was born and raised in Mississippi. Her daughter (my grandmother), was born in Texas, but when she married in 1919 she chose a set of dishes with a beautiful magnolia blossom on it.
 I have her large platter.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Welcome to the South

Vicksburg, sitting on  cliff above the mighty Mississippi River is the first town you come to in this beautiful state;on Interstate 20 from Louisiana. We always enjoy stopping at their welcome center. It is a good place to stretch your legs, get a warm greeting, and a free cup of coffee.
There is a fireplace near the front door adorned by a manikin in what appears to be some sort of a Civil War Uniform,
and a parlor with yet more manikins, a lady and her beau.
Vicksburg was the site of a major civil war battle. The siege, forty seven days long, was a turning point in the war. The Union Army led by General Grant, captured Vicksburg, gaining control of the Mississippi River.