Thursday, January 29, 2015

Spare Time

I'd like to say that I crochet in my spare time, but honestly sometimes I forgo things like laundry and cleaning toilets to manipulate those beautiful colors of string into works of art.

This is a soap holder/washcloth duo that I whipped up for a friend who makes homemade soaps. In turn I received some heavenly smelling soaps for my baths.

Before Christmas my cousin contacted me about making her a matching tree skirt for her white Christmas tree. I scrounged around my healthy yarn stash for the colors she was looking for and I yarned my days away until I finished it and presented it to her as an early Christmas gift.

This afghan I started from an inspiration I saw on Pinterest. Skye eyed it the whole time I worked on it so I gave it to her.

I'm a big fan of small crochet projects. I love the idea of starting something and finishing it up the same day. This little gingerbread boy was a nice addition to my tree this past Christmas.

This is another one of my Pinterest inspired projects. I LOVED working on this granny square cat because it was a little different than my usual creations.

While Lucas and Emily were here for Christmas Emily loved the striped afghan I had made for Skye and expressed an interest in having one for their sofa. I just finished it up the other day and plan to mail it out to them soon.

I plan on spending more time on smaller projects in the future just because I tend to get bored working on the same project for weeks at a time.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Zoo, a Bike Ride, and Some News

This week the weather has been warm and sunny so we took advantage with some outdoor activities.

On Tuesday we met up with friends at the Austin Zoo. We haven't been there in a few years and since it's a rescue zoo I don't feel so bad about spending money there...

Toby always enjoys talking to the animals....

We also road the train....

On Wednesday Toby and I took the bikes out for a ride along the Pflugerville Trail System. We rode approximately 8 1/2 miles along the trail....

A portion of the trail rambles along Willow Creek. With the recent rain, the creek was flowing nicely...

It was such a peaceful ride with plenty to see. I don't get many pictures when I'm riding because I don't like to stop my momentum on the bike.

And the news....

Lucas and Emily set their wedding date for April 25 so it looks like we will be taking a trip to South Alabama in a couple of months.

I almost have a sense of dread about the trip. I have never taken out the time to analyze my feelings about it, but every time I think about going to Alabama I get an anxious, sick feeling. It feels like I'm taking a step back in time.... like I'm scared I'll get stuck there and never be able to escape again.

The only thing that excites me about it is seeing some family members and watching my son get married so in that case I will make the best of it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Biking Town Bird Lake aka Lady Bird Lake

Toby bought me a new bike for Christmas and I've been itching to give it a proper christening. With its blue skies and balmy temps, today was the day.

We loaded up the bikes and headed to downtown Austin.

We unloaded the bikes and just started peddling. There is no end to biking and hiking trails in Austin so we pretty much just rode randomly around.

I couldn't believe how much fun I was having.  I always prided myself on enjoying a brisk walk, jog, or a hike but biking the trails sent me to new levels of enjoyment. On the bike we could cover a lot of ground in a shorter amount of time, which meant getting to know the city a little better.

My legs were like jello and I admit I had to hop off my bike a couple of times and walk it up some inclines, but in time I'm pretty sure I'll master those small hurdles.

Even though it was a little harder to take pictures riding a bike, I did stop off to get a few shots of our ride....

Lou Neff Point

We also came up on Governor Greg Abbot's innauguration celebration.  I'm not into politics but that was intriguing. I'm always about new experiences.

It was nice to be able to manuever around and about without fighting traffic or finding limited and sometimes very expensive parking in a vehicle....

The past several weeks have been so cold, gray and gloomy that I was beginning to get a little depressed. Today definitely lifted my spirits.

Monday, January 12, 2015


Today while channel surfing on this cold, gloomy January day, I came across a special on 60 minutes on the legalization of marijuana in Colorado. According to the special the legalization has had positive effects. Crime has gone down and the economy has been stimulated.

There has been much controversy over the legalization of marijuana. Currently, I don't smoke "weed" nor have I gotten high since way before the birth of my daughter almost 14 years ago...not that I can recall anyway.

Once upon a time I found great joy in smoking pot. I don't remember exactly the first time I ever smoked a "joint" but I do remember as an older teen spending many a weekend night in the early 1980's getting high with my best friend Anna at McNally Park.  Alas, those were the days when teens could hang out drinking beer and getting high in a park without being unnecessarily interrogated by the "Po Po". Freedom still reigned back then and we all managed to survive.

After getting high at the park we would then venture to the local McDonald's to order a .50 cheeseburger, and a large coke and fries. Was McDonald's GMO back then? Who knows. Those days we could eat a hamburger in peace without the fear mongers and health enthusiasts putting crazy ideas into our heads via Facebook and other various mind numbing news feeds.

After we we ordered our meal through the drive thru I would park my 1970-ish baby blue Dodge Demon facing the DI Parkway in order to be able to see what friends were headed to the park while we munched heartily on our grub laughing hysterically at our own lame jokes. Food never tasted so good nor was life ever more relaxed.

This was before the days of cell phones and texting. If you wanted to catch up with your friends you put yourself in the area you knew they would be or sought out a pay phone. It was always a hit and miss but it made life more interesting and challenging in regards to socialization.

Fast forward to my first marriage a couple of years later. Me and my husband Frank enjoyed partaking. It was our thing we did together to relax in the evenings. There was a little old black lady who lived down the road from us that sold joints for a dollar. Every evening after work Frank would drive down and get us one of Miss Hattie's joints and we'd smoke it while we watched a movie. Since I have never been a TV person pot always made sitting in front of the mindless TV more tolerable.

So how do I really feel about the legalization of marijuana?? I don't smoke it so I really don't have much of an opinion. Even though I'm a drinker, I do feel that on a general level smoking marijuana is the lesser of the two evils.

Why don't I smoke anymore? Because I don't want to get as big as a house in a munchie fest (bread and butter was my favorite), I have too many constructive things to do these days to feel "lazy", I don't need anymore bad habits that will eventually need to be broken, and the most obvious reason is my daughter is such a goody two shoes that she would probably turn me over to the authorities.

Sadly, I think most people have so much emotional baggage it's hard not to choose one or the other..or something even worse.

Friday, January 9, 2015

My Take On January

I have this feeling unless life brings me some surprises my little online life journal will be pretty sparse again this year. BUT once again, for the sake of my journaling, I will trudge on with my memories.

Lucas and Emily came for a couple of days after the New Year. It was a short but nice visit.

On January 8th Toby and I celebrated our 15 year wedding anniversary with some homemade Margarita's made in our Vitamix. I have to say they were pretty darned good!

Still going strong......

A rare shot of me and the elusive teen.....

I love these Post Oaks at the park. Their branches remind me of veins.....

So far,  2015 is going well.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

A Year in the Life

Time flies. Everyone says it and everyone knows it but yet everyone says it like it's a new discovery.

Like every other year - aside from the ones where I was anticipating the age of 18 or trapped in a dysfunctional marriage, this one was no different. Time flew.

It wasn't a bad year at all. Nothing exciting or extraordinary, but luckily nothing devastating either.

Looking back on the year.....

* Skye started her menstrual cycle - She's growing up fast

* A few mini vacations and a camping trip - These little getaways are rejuvenating for my otherwise
   mundane existence

* Lucas got engaged - It makes me happy that he found someone to share his life with

* Toby turned 40 - ...and para sailed with Skye at South Padre

* I turned the big 50 - Getting older and wiser

* I quit running - I somehow injured/fractured my foot so now I have reduced myself to power
   walking. Interestingly enough, I have maintained my weight even though I toned down my
   morning exercise routine.

I look forward to another year of the day and the life.