Sunday, February 28, 2010


This particular post is all about giving my dear friend Angela a little bump. She has been creating some adorable little clothes for children. I just wanted to share her shop with you here on Etsy.

If you are interested or know anyone that is, make sure you check back often for new items.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Girls Gone Wild

I am sitting here in my "office" hiding out at the moment. Hiding out from 3 females ranging in the ages of 9 to 11 years. I almost can't take it.

My son always had friends over. I don't ever remember feeling frazzled when they were over. Thinking back, I don't ever recall ever seeing any of them when they were all together for a sleepover or whatever.

These girls are driving me crazy with screaming, dramatics, and overall annoyance. I suggested maybe they play a board game or watch a movie.....I guess that's not what kids do these days...

Let me give you a little backround. Summer knows that I don't allow sleepovers for her yet. That rule is just biding my time with her. I did allow my son sleepovers at her age and younger. There is a reason for this.... son was public school educated and I worked a full time job. I delighted in the time I was with him. Kid annoyance didn't bother me back then because I wasn't around kids 24/7 like I am with Summer. There is a big difference between spending all day long with your child as opposed to 3 or 4 hours.

Nowadays by the time 7:00 p.m hits I am DONE with of every color and shape.

While raising my son I had the luxury of being at work for 8 hours a day. Let's face it folks, there is a reason the general population doesn't mind shipping their kids off to school daily. Working a full time job will ALWAYS be less stressful than than enduring kids all day long. That is, unless you are truly a kid person...

My point is, I don't mind being with my daughter 24/7. I am used to that and rather enjoy it most of the time. But after being with her round the clock I don't feel like dealing with somebody elses kids "after hours". I am ready to be "off duty" with my offspring by 10:00p.m.

I know this may sound selfish. I even think it's selfish but...

So tonight, knowing the sleepover rule, she asked if her neighborhood friends could stay over until 10:00p.m. Reluctantly for her sake I agreed. After all, I know she needs to feel like a "normal" kid sometimes.

Growing up, I can remember my mom being the same way. I never felt comfortable inviting my friends over and very rarely had sleepovers. When I did have friends over I always felt if I were walking on eggshells. My family liked their privacy...and so do I.

Although I am hating on this whole thing, I know that her friends will be my demise from this day on. The days are numbered that I will be able to keep our household friend free.

Just yesterday I realized my little girl is growing up. She no longer is interested in the toy section at Walmart nor does she play with any of her "toys". I did a "spring cleaning" of her bedroom yesterday and realized that she has not played with any of her "toys" in over a year.

We are slowly changing as a family. It's a bittersweet thing. Toby and I look forward to the day we can be an "us" again. Even so, I will miss the "us" as Summer goes from being an "us" into a "her".

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Little of the White Stuff

Every so often the weather can give us a little surprise. Today in our little Central Texas corner of the world we got snow...actual SNOW. I knew snow was in the forecast for today when I went to bed last night, but I have learned that what the forecasters say may or may not manifest.

I awoke around 7:00a.m this morning to the sound of tiny ice balls hitting the windows. I was not impressed. If the weather was going to ruin my outdoor activity for the day I at least wanted it to be noteworthy.

Today was Toby's day off and we usually have errands or have fun stuff planned. Before the snow even started I had already decided that Austinites drive bad enough in good weather conditions. Seeing all the ice on the street made me decide I would rather stay indoors all day long than be rear-ended by a speed demon not fathomed by the weather conditions.

Around 10:00a.m I glanced out the window and saw those big pretty fluffy flakes we had been promised. I have to say I was impressed.

While living in Alabama I had experienced snow once or twice but nothing as spectacular as what I witnessed today. The snow fell continually for 4 or 5 hours. I probably would not have been so much impressed other than the fact those flurries stayed with us all day long. Considering the part of the U.S. I live, it felt kinda weird to look out my window and see snowflakes falling from the sky.

We spent a good bit of time outside in the middle of it. I wasn't about to let the day go by without plenty of evidence of Summer's first snow experience and my first real snow experience in years.

We were all soaked to the bone. We don't own winter gear. Summer was wearing socks as gloves and her shoes are canvas. Toby and I don't even own a pair of gloves and our jackets are fairly lightweight...certainly not extreme weather apparel.

Here are some snowy pics....

Ordinarily I would have been freezing my ass off roaming around outside in "frozen water". I guess the adrenaline of taking pics and basking in snow flurries kept my inner body warm.

I enjoyed the experience and took at as an "experience". I do have to say that after today I am looking forward to the warmer dryer temps forecasted for tomorrow.

For today...I will mark it as an enjoyable memory in my large filing cabinet of memories. :-)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Observing The "Lord Jesus"

It was a beautiful day today....temps in the mid 70's, sun shining brightly. Summer and I took a bike ride to the school park and hung out for awhile. After a little while our tummies started to rumble.

We decided to take a trip up the road to the local Subway. $5 footlongs sounded like a good deal to me.

Even though it was way past lunch time there seemed to be an unusual amount of "traffic" in the Subway. Ahead of us in line was a black family that obviously had just been "released" of their Sunday morning service. It was 1:30p.m.....that was a longer service than I would have liked to have to endure.

Anyway, they were obviously very pumped up about their morning sermon. I eavesdropped on their lively banter as they stood in line in front of me.

They spoke about how wonderful "God" and "Jesus" were. About how "Jesus" would "save" them. About how "God" is wonderful and how "he" "tells" them what they need to do to be "righteous".

The whole time they were "Amening" each other they made sure they were taking time out to holler and curse their many kids that were obviously trying to exert some of their pent up energy from having to sit still in a pew for hours on end.

Watching this family made me realize how the majority of humankind practice religion, yet so few of us practice spirituality....

Execution Style

I bought a Sunday newspaper today. I hardly ever read the newspaper and rarely watch the evening news unless I am inquiring about the weather. I am just not a news person. I find the news media to be dramatic and mostly only half-true.

The purpose in my Sunday newspaper purchase was for the weekly coupons. I just can't seem to make the couponing thing worth my while. I bought a Sunday paper for $2 and only clipped a couple of coupons. According to my calculations my savings was zilch because by the time I bought the paper and clipped the coupons they didn't add up to much more than what I had bought the paper for.

Anyway, I figured since I had spent my $2 I was going to make use and read the newspaper.

Not much interesting stuff in there. I read about the guy flying his plane into the IRS building in Austin and his reasons for it. You can check it out here if you like. I have no opinion on that one but was a bit intrigued....

There was one thing I saw that sticks out in my mind. There was an article on a lawyer from Texas that has wrote a book on Capital Punishment in Texas. As an inset in the article there was a picture of an execution room...

If you notice in the pic there is a pillow on the execution table. I found it to be very odd there would be a pillow on the table. If you are about to electrocute someone to death why in the world are you going to make them comfortable enough for a pillow????

I have no strong opinions on Capital Punishment - other than I think the Universe balances out right and wrongs and it's not up to us to be the vigilantes - but I did find it odd to have a comforting object like a pillow on the table of someone that was just about to be singed to death....

Friday, February 19, 2010

You Teach People How to Treat You

For the past couple of weeks I have been thinking about relationships. All sorts of relationships...marriage, sibling, parent, friendship, etc.

My recent contact with my extended family got me to thinking about family relationships. What is it that makes a family close??? What gives a family the desire and commitment to keep in contact and maintain a meaningful relationship outside of special occasions???

I can remember growing up we would get together with grandparent's, cousins, aunts and uncles but as we kids got older those times seemed to be fewer and fewer. Even so, our family was never the close-nit type.

Only in the past few years have I been able to get close to my brother. We grew up in the same household and only now 40 years later have we maintained a real relationship. My youngest brother is still hit and miss...we may talk on the phone once a year only at my initiation.

On a more personal level this is more what I was thinking about. As my mother was weakening with cancer and on her death bed I can remember not being comfortable at all with touching her or showing my emotion. I wanted to. I wanted to wrap my arms around her and cry. I wanted wipe her tears of physical pain. I wanted to get in her bed with her and snuggle up and tell her how much I loved her and how much I hated seeing her in pain. Instead, I stood around looking dumb not knowing what to do.

I WANTED to do all those things a daughter should be able to do for her dying mother but I couldn't. It was not the sort of relationship my mother and I had. It's not the sort of way she taught me to treat her. She may have even wanted me to do that and didn't know how to ask.....I don't know.

Growing up I can't ever remember my mother embracing me. As I got older she did manage to give me a stiff hug and a pat on the back every so often. Only in extreme circumstances did I ever hear the word "I love you" she did hours before her death.

I never doubted that my mother loved me. I don't think she was ever all that crazy about me, but she did love me as I did her.

When I had my son 21 years ago I decided I didn't want that cold distant relationship that I had with my parents. I wanted my kids to feel physical affection from me. I wanted them to feel natural and comfortable with me. I don't want to be on my death bed and my kids to feel if I am a stranger.

After all is said, I think back on my mom and I am glad that she was the way she was. If she were not, I could not be the mom I am today..


Monday, February 15, 2010

A Walk in the Park

As you have probably guessed by my lack of posts, I am either uninspired of any idle chit chat or not much has been going on. Both have been true.

Unlike last week, this week the weather was a little chilly but tolerable for outdoor activities. With us being out of town last week it took us two days to make up our errands this week.

Last night I got an e-mail from Angela requesting that we go hiking today. The weather was forecasted to be perfect and Toby and I had already planned on some outdoor activity anyway. No sense in wasting a beautiful day.

Angela...I love her. She is much younger than I am and is in a totally different "season" of life than I, but she is a trooper and inspires me. She is one of the very few people that I know that I can relate to AND she enjoys nature and being outdoors as much as I do.

We started off on the trail with 2 little ones in tow, 2 big kids, and one very extraordinary hubby who is willing to endure all of us females on a two mile hike.

The trail is about a 4 mile loop trail. Since Toby and I had already walked one side of the trail before we decided to start at the other end of the loop trail. Somehow the trail we took was not the loop trail but the neighborhood trail.

We walked through neighborhoods peeking through privacy fences and at barking dogs and swimming pools. We passed by an elementary school full of recessing school kids -I wondered what the girls thought about them being caged behind a fence while they were out walking around freely.....

Because we were not on the loop that we thought we were, we were totally lost. There were so many different paths to take and we were making split decisions as we ventured. We finally decided that if we were ever going to get back to the park we should stop at one of the neighborhood homes and ask directions.

Toby and the older girls volunteered to go knock on a door and ask which way back to the park.

We finally made it back to the park. Despite our mishap of being on the wrong trail we had a good time.

Although I had my camera I was having so much fun walking and enjoying my walking companions that I didn't take but one pic. Here are the older girls and Toby being statues right before we made it back to the park....

As we were walking around I couldn't help but think how blessed I was. A beautiful day with good kids, a great friend, a wonderful husband in a great city. I couldn't ask for anymore than what I received today. :-)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

San Antone, Tejas

Long story made short, Toby had a side welding job he was asked to do in San Antonio this week. We opted to do this "side job" on his regular days off. We decided that since the weather was extremely cold and wet that we didn't mind if he generated a little extra money on the side.

Since we were going to be in SA for more than a day, I decided this was a perfect chance to visit my aunt and uncle who live in SA that I have not seen in several years.

We left Austin early Wednesday morning and arrived in SA around 9:30.

This was the beginning sunrise as we were leaving the house. I thought it was pretty. I am usually not up early enough in the mornings to see sunrises.....

Once we got to the hotel we were told they did not have the room ready yet..figures. Toby had to get to work so that left Summer and I lingering around SA in the icey rain without a place to chill out.

Luckily when I called my aunt she was more than happy to come pick us up and take us home with her. She does not live far from where we were staying-now how convenient was that???

Summer and I had a wonderful day hanging out with my Aunt and Uncle catching up on memories, family members, and playing the Wii.

Uncle Fred also delighted in showing Summer the ropes of golf. Summer ironically has been expressing a great interest in golf lately so it was a special treat for her to have a golf tutor.

The only reason I don't have any pics of them playing golf is because I was not "man" enough to brave the weather and go outside and take pics.

Summer also enjoyed helping my Aunt Sharon cook our evening meal. I can remember years ago when I stayed with them in Sequin, Texas my Aunt trying to get me to help her cook. I was clueless......

After we prepared dinner we headed to pick up Toby from work. I had my aunt drop me off at the hotel so I could pick up my car and grab Toby from work.

After I picked Toby up from work we all drove back to their house and had the most delicious spaghetti dinner I have eaten in a while. My aunt is a pro at throwing together a last minute meal.

The next day after I dropped Toby off at work Summer and I headed to Aunt Sharon's again. The weather was even worse than it was the day before but we were determined to get out and enjoy the city.

Uncle Freddy wasn't up for the challenge of getting out and navigating cold, rain, and horrible Texas drivers so he stayed home.

Our first stop was the Riverwalk. Unfortunately we weren't able to walk outside like we would have all loved too, but we did stay inside the mall and "window shop".

After the Riverwalk we hopped on the trolley and headed to the Mexican Market. I had never been there before. If I wasn't so frugal I could have spent a fortune in that place!!!

After we "shopped" around for awhile we grabbed a bite to eat at some famous restaurant there at the Market. I can't remember the name of it. It was a festive place. There were Mariachi bands and lots of food and treats....

We didn't have much time to be out and about. I had to pick Toby up from work at 4:00p.m. so we caught the trolley back to the car. Before we got to the garage Aunt Sharon pointed out the Menger. Since we were right there at it I wanted to go in and check it out for a sec.....

Despite the bad weather we all had a good time. Here is a pic of my Aunt and Uncle I took before we uncle is my mother's brother. We were grateful for their hospitality while we away from home.

I am looking forward to more visits in the future.

Valentines Party 2010

We have had a busy week this week. A Valentine Party at Angela's started the week off. The weather was not cooperative so Angela was nice (and brave) enough to offer to have it at her house.

Everyone had a good time. I say "everyone", but our party consisted only of me, Angela, Linh, and our kids.

We did some crafts..

Exchanged Valentines and ate cupcakes....

The littlest ones just roamed around like little ones do doing their thing....

We had a good time. It will be cataloged in my life's memories in my brain...or wherever intangible place we store all that information. :-)

Monday, February 1, 2010


I was born in raised in Alabama but I have a few family members that reside in Texas. Most of my family members that live in Texas I have not seen in many, many years..literally.

We don't have strong family ties outside of our immediate family but since moving to Texas I have felt an urge to re-establish my relationship with my family members here. After all, we need all the family and friends we can get here in the Lonestar State. I love Texas and plan on spending the rest of my days here, but at times "I" feel a little isolated from family connections.

Thanks to FB I have been able to get in contact with my family members here in Texas. As many drawbacks as technology has, there are perks that come along with it.

Yesterday I got to spend the day with my second cousin and her husband. As with all people it's always a gamble when you meet them. With family all you can do is hope for the best.

I have to say after meeting my Texas cousin for only the second time in my life - last time was around 20 years ago - I was impressed. I certainly wasn't ready to scoot them out the door, which is always a good sign for me. :-)

We had a good time gossiping about family members and sharing family experiences and memories. I look forward to being able to spend more time with them in the future.

There has been alot going on lately in my mind, but I have not really had the chance to sit down at the computer and blog about them. Hopefully in the future I will be able to catch up with all of our goings-on.

Tomorrow we are headed to San Antonio for a couple of days for "work" purposes. I should specify that Toby will be the one doing the "work" while Summer and I spend some time with my aunt and uncle that reside in San Antone. I am looking forward to it......