16 February 2012

25 August 2006

Continued from last post...

Thank you Blogger for the interuption...
Anyway, even Dottie got into the Luau fun

Getting back to the summer recap...we're still hoping to take a small excursion in the RV we just got, maybe to a lake or river spot or maybe even the gulf coast. The summer has been so hot in TX (last 3 weeks-every day in the three digits) that we are desperately looking toward some cooler temps and ANY kind of rain.

24 August 2006

Your first assignment is...

Remember how the first assignment when we went back to school included some variation on the theme..."what did you do this summer?" Well here it is...

I do enjoy the kids being home for summer but I must admit the peace of being alone is extremely refreshing. They just went back a couple days ago and already I feel 100% more productive. Because I've been working throughout the summer we didn't get to do much vacationing but we did fit in some special activities.
The highlight of the season for us is always our summer Bible Convention near Austin. Unfortunately the pictures all contained me and I erased them from the camera expeditiously. We all enjoy the hours of Bible talks, demonstrations, experiences and especially the Bible Drama. This year it was a reenactment of
1 Kings chapter 13. Very thought provoking. DQ and MC especially enjoy the fancy hotel and pool and exercise room. After 4 evenings of swimming and exercising they are ready to come home though. A fun side to the trip is seeing friends from all over TX that we only see during the Conventions.
DQ, the recently turned teen and I, planned a LUAU sleepover for her and her friends. I don't know who had more fun, her or me. We went all out and spent hrs on the internet getting ideas for decor, food, drinks, games, etc.
A centerpiece

Of course we did the limbo dance and competed at hula hoops. Each of us had name tags with our Hawaiian names, (DQ and I are "Leikeli" and "Keli.") We made beaded ankle bracelets, did makeup and hair makeovers with "glamour shots"

The make up artist


and next morning we made a scrapbook with computer copies of the pics we took the day before as we sipped our pina colada smoothies.


After the make overs
For some reason blogger won't let me add any more pics so I'm posting this first then I'll post a couple more pics when I continue...

02 June 2006

Creative Blockbuster List Friday

Honestly, I am so busy that I seldom have time to think about or even be concerned about what's blocking my creativity. Actually, altho I'm not creative in what may be thought of as the traditional ways, I try to use everything in my life as a creative outlet. You know, "how can I be creative while I'm trying to fill up my property vacancies?" or "while I'm mowing this field, what can I create?" or "when I write this late rent notice, can I put a new slant on an old concept?" or "what creative thing can I plann for DQ and MC for this summer so I don't hear the dreaded 'I'm bored?' These may sound mundane but they keep me sane, (I think.) I can even look back at menial tasks with a sense of accomplishment which makes the monumental things really feel creative.
But, putting all that to the side, there are some things that really inspire me to be creative, even in the traditional sense. I think an important thing for me is to not feel stressed. Altho sometimes stress can be a motivator, ideally I like to be free of it. I do this in several ways:
1. Finish my list of "to do's" for the day. Not the whole week but start early and get the "day" list done. This means keeping the list "do-able" within a day. OR
2. Put on some music and belt out the lyrics. Especially Broadway tunes. It worked for Maria, from Sound of Music and Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady. They just burst out in song in the middle of an argument or while walking down the street, and they never look stressed. I just recently saw the Musical "Lion King" so at any moment I might be dancing around to the tune and words of "Hakuna Matata" like I was strolling the Serengeti itself. (This also works with a song from Queen-Bohemian Rhapsody or We are the Champions.) Once the stress is gone-creativity can flourish easier.
But, a single thing that really has brought out the creative juices in me is reading about others' endeavors at it in their blogs. Whether it's the creative outlet of writing and journaling, creating with your hands through sewing, quilting and pottery, drawing or painting, gardening, the art of raising children or being financially creative on a budget, one of your blogs has inspired me. From the smooth lines and bright, crisp colors of her paintings, witty banter and amusing illustrative stories and emotional, thought provoking musings of Mrs. Pom to the beautiful handiwork and family stories of a Soul Sistah, to an illusive blackbird from Tuvalu who is so gifted at making the everyday matters of life a creativity in and of themselves to the currently vacationing Mistress of Merryville and her beautifully Victorian images and a garden of fancy as well as the often deep, always honest and insightful and sometimes even refreshingly politically incorrect, essays of the beautiful Eldonna. You are some of the inspirations to me that keep me feeling creative. I send a humble Thank you.

20 May 2006

Palabras de ?Sabiduria? to the Princess

This weeks List Friday Challenge from Mrs Pom:
***She, "the Princess Graduate," could use a good list of reasons to be glad that college is over and life is beginning.
So for List Friday, please write a list of sound/funny/silly/advice for college graduates. What would you do again or wish you had done or would never do again?***

Well, much of what I did worked OK for me but I don’t know as I would advise others to follow my course. Obviously, if I knew then what I know now there would be much done differently but I will say that I learned many valuable lessons from the paths I chose. So, without further ado I will attempt to compile a list of “winsome, witty AND wise” things that I could have benefited from hearing upon graduation from college.

1. Don’t rush into anything. There’s plenty of time. Since you have the benefit of a peaceful home, use it to meditate on the possibilities available to you without having to be immediately immersed into the stress of supporting yourself and adjusting to a new life all by yourself.
2. If there is a significant other in the picture, consider carefully how much they affect any long-term decisions you make. (I did not do this.)
3. If you have any dreams, don’t feel they need to be fulfilled overnight but think about them and what direction you should be pointed in order to get there some day. In my case, I didn’t have any dreams that I was aware of. (Sounds like I was sort of shallow, huh?) In retrospect, though, my dream was to be self-sufficient, not having to depend on others for anything. Unconsciously I sauntered toward that end and eventually felt pretty self-sufficient- only to realize that maybe that really wasn’t my dream after all. Depending on others is an art I have only recently discovered the benefit of. (Even though you can do something "better" doesn't mean someone else doesn't have anovel slant to the task, right?) Still trying to cultivate the ability to practice this quality.
4. Until 20 years ago I didn’t realize either, the value of having God involved in all my decisions. I believed in God and was brought up to know the difference between right and wrong but when it came right down to it-when I would consider my steps- I didn’t even have a fleeting thought as to how God would feel about it. Often I made good decisions by chance but could have alleviated much heartache if I meditated on how my actions would affect God.
5. Don’t take yourself too seriously.

6. Attempt to be balanced.
7. Listen to all opinions but follow your own after careful thought.

I just read some of the other lists and wish I had read them when I graduated. I'd like to read a list from Mrs Staggs whose insight I adore. And Mrs. Pom...your advise is as sage and practical and at the same time feeling and loving. Maybe different advise than what you may have given when we made the step to graduation ourselves but I sense the same qualities behind the words.

12 May 2006

Bloomin' List Friday

  • There's no way to keep this list to ten. Mrs. Pom evidently was in the same quandry so decided to expand her list. I don't even know if I have only one favorite TYPE of garden. I do love those Victorian cottage gardens but am always drawn to the impossible to duplicate beauty of a Japanese garden. Then there's the geometric uniqueness of the English garden complete with topiary and loaded with round and square box elders.
    I get particular joy from flowers that are difficult for me to grow. They have differed over the years as varied climates I've lived in changed the species that were difficult. However the dainty
    Clematis vine is one I've always had difficulty with and each time they exude a flower from their delicate vine I get a lump in my throat.
    Purple irises also thrill me, especially when they first begin to bloom and the little purple heads just peep out of the strong, tall stems. I also love the smooth, porcelain-like bark of the
    Crepe Myrtle and it's tender clusters. Along around March, Texas splendor appears in the fragrant
    Mountain Laurels. They line my driveway and the perfume is intoxicating every time you walk outside.

    Receiving very honorable mention (no pics available) are:
  • Pansies, johnny-jump-ups, violas, with their perky colorfulness. The stoney look of
  • Hens and chicks. The fragrant, discreet flowers of the
  • Mock Orange shrub. The summer blooming
  • Fire Bush and it's red trumpet-like flowers and the papery bracts of the
  • Bouganvilla. And finally, #10, the tropical look of the
  • Hibiscus, in it's array of assorted colors and varieties.

I'm not at all sure these are my favorites but I do like 'em! And this list has done it's job because thinking of them has kept a smile on my face the whole time I've been trying to recall each beautiful one. Except for the moments, three to be exact, where the blogger program glitched and I had to start over.

06 May 2006

List Friday

Too busy to post this on Friday so here's my list on Saturday:
OK Mrs Pom, here's my faves from yesteryear:

(Remember that teen years are long and many changes occur from 13 to 19 so what I hated or liked at 13 often changed drastically when I was 19)

  • a tweed, green mini skirt. It first belonged to my MOM but once she grew into the size I have now grown into, she passed it on to me. In 9th grade I would wear it at least once a week but would have to roll up the waist once I left the house. Then I'd roll it back down once I got home.
  • cut off jeans and jean shorts.
  • Platform shoes, real high. I'm still only 5 foot tall so I still like high shoes, although now I prefer a thinner heel.
  • Clogs. I love how you can just slip them on, no straps to buckle or laces to tie. Am I lazy or what?
  • Danskin leotard, off the shoulder with no bra.
  • My SUNY college gym shorts. My daughter is still wearing them and recently commented on their deplorable condition. Not bad though for being 32 years old.
  • Peasant blouses and ruffled peasant skirts. I still like them.

I'll probably think of more later but that's all I can think of now.

26 April 2006

Use What You Have

Since April is "Use what you have" month, I thought I'd share what my back yard friends have recycled. This close up of their nest shows up beautifully red-speckled eggs.
Backing up for perspective you can see they've used an antique oil/gas can that I have displayed on a lattice fence as the nursery for the new babes. And here is the proud mom/dad Carolina Wren. They visit the nest daily while I watch from the window but I've never got a glimpse of mom sitting on the eggs. I hope to be a witness to the emergence of the babes and their first efforts at flight. However I also love cats and will have my work cut out for me trying to keep my seven felines from being curious about these new ones.

18 April 2006

I Think Therefore I Meme

I'm not sure how these memes work, if you need an invitation or not- but I'm picking this up from Blackbird and passing along my version.
I AM: busy.
I WANT: a house on the side of a mountain with a creek in my back yard
I WISH: I would stop aging.
I HATE: when people are presumptuous.
I MISS: being slender.
I HEAR: birds chirping and the fish tank water falling into the tank.
I WONDER: what my kids will do/be like when they are adults.
I REGRET: not having a relationship with God sooner in my life.
I AM NOT: a quiet person.
I DANCE: anything but the marangue (too much twirling.)
I SING: show tunes (to my kids chagrin.)
I CRY: seldom.
I AM NOT ALWAYS: calm.
I MAKE WITH MY HANDS: gardens, birdhouses, jewelry.
I WRITE: a blog for my campground, this blog(not very often) and 100's of emails.
I CONFUSE: many.
I NEED: an employee I can trust to spot me for a vacation now and then.
I SHOULD: think before I speak (rather, yell).
I START: each morning with a list of "things to do".
I FINISH: 25% of the list-more on a productive day.
I TAG: jamais.

04 April 2006

Tiptoe Through the Tulips

Since I've been so busy with work I've barely had time to enjoy the explosion of spring blooms. RV'ers from all over Canada and the US have been bombarding San Antonio, which makes me happy but overly occupied with the mundane and unable to drink in the wonders of the season. Spring flowers and Spring birds are some of my favorite associations with the vernal season but the interaction with the growth process makes flowers so satisfying. I took pictures (no scent included, unfortunately) so I could revel in the things about spring that I long for all winter long. Thought I'd share. The TX drought has been very damaging to many of the wildflowers here but some have refused to stay entombed and others have been the beneficiary of the common household hose. A good imagination might fill your olfactory with joy. Wild Lantana (pungent, minty leaves)
Spiderwort (beds of these bloom in the midday sun but appear as mere grass when their purple heads sleep in the early morn and eve.)

A xeriscape succulent with summer-long lupine blooms. Don't know the name.
Most recognize these state of TX flowers. Bluebonnets sneak up threw the grass all over TX and the highways are loaded with large splotches of purpley-blue. I call this ranch cactus, grows right out of the rocks.
Even plain old photinias have an intricate blossom.
A lady Bank's rose. Not a very good pic but the little pink roses smell like heaven.
An iris bed just beginning to come alive.
A patch of scarlet amaryillis halfway thru it's short life of bloom. These aloe vera's bloom in yellow and orange but I prefer the yellows.
Not sure where this yucca plant got it's nickname but it's called Adam's Needle. This one's got a double bloom. Flowers are wonderful sauteed in butter.

Well, sorry, no tulips and I'll save the bird pics for another time. I apologize if I named a plant erroneously. Let me know if I have.

22 March 2006

F.A.M.I.L.Y.

I read a real simple poem today that really hit home with me. Thought I'd pass it along with my thanks to it's anonymous writer for making me meditate on my actions.
I ran into a stranger as he passed by,
"Oh excuse me please" was my reply.
He said, "Please excuse me too;
I wasn't watching for you."
We were very polite, this stranger and I.
We went on our way and we said goodbye.
But at home a different story is told,
How we treat our loved ones, young and old.
Later that day, cooking the evening meal,
My son stood beside me very still.
When I turned, I nearly knocked him down.
"Move out of the way," I said with a frown.
He walked away, his little heart broken.
I didn't realize how harshly I'd spoken.
While I lay awake in bed,
God's still small voice came to me and said,
"While dealing with a stranger, common courtesy you use,
but the family you love, you seem to abuse.
Go and look on the kitchen floor,
You'll find some flowers there by the door.
Those are the flowers he brought for you.
He picked them himself: pink, yellow and blue.
He stood very quietly not to spoil the surprise,
you never saw the tears that filled his little eyes."
By this time, I felt very small,
And now my tears began to fall.
I quietly went and knelt by his bed;
"Wake up, little one, wake up," I said.
"Are these the flowers you picked for me?"
He smiled, "I found 'em, out by the tree.
I picked 'em because they're pretty like you.
I knew you'd like 'em, especially the blue."
I said, "Son, I'm very sorry for the way I acted today;
I shouldn't have yelled at you that way."
He said, "Oh, Mom, that's okay.
I love you anyway."
I said, "Son, I love you too,
and I do like the flowers, especially the blue."
It's been said:
The word FAMILY means:
FAMILY = (F)ATHER (A)ND (M)OTHER (I) (L)OVE (Y)OU
And that's all I have to say about that.