Thursday, March 31, 2011


This has been an exhausting day! Last night at 9:00 I put Lucy in her kennel after taking her on a good long walk. NOW time to play with our 'new' 6 year old cat, Maggie! We found her lying under the baby grand piano in the den.....stretched out like she had always lived here! GREAT! We settled down for a TV program and while I WANTED to pick up Maggie and pet her.....Louis Dean said to let her get used to us and just BE for awhile. OK. At 9:30 I checked and she was still under the piano.

At 10:00 I decided to brush her since she has been declawed on ALL FOUR paws! She was NOT there. I searched high and low. Under things, behind things. I used a flashlight.......which is NOT a good idea since I was unprepared for all the filth I found in my very own house! Dust, dirt, debris and dead bugs. Under and behind the furniture everywhere. In every room. UGH!! Alas, no kitty cat! I was freaking out thinking she had slipped outside! And NO claws to protect herself! Well, Louis Dean reassured me we had NOT even been out the door since I had last seen her under the piano. SO she HAD to be here somewhere. I THOUGHT I heard her in our bedroom ......which is a disaster area since we are redoing my bathroom and everything is piled up everywhere! Lots of hiding places but she was not in any of them!  We went to bed.

Every time I got up in the night I looked for her. No cat. Got up this cat. I could not help myself......I started crying which gave me a head ache. Amber called to congratulate me on our new cat....and I cried all the more! She also said she HAD to be here someplace and she had been through this very same thing with Snowball and July multiple times.  We called the pet place and the lady suggested we put out some tuna or salmon. She also said this was not uncommon and Magenta was simply scared and hiding. She would come out when she was hungry. We sat in the gazebo where we could watch the dish of salmon juice through the glass door and waited. We did our Bible reading and books and prayed. No cat.
By this time it was about 1:00 in the afternoon! Nothing much had been accomplished except looking for Maggie!

Then we decided to take the drawers out of my dresser which has been damaged and one end is sitting on a brick. No sign of her BUT we HEARD something!! We quickly cleared the stuff off the dresser and Louis Dean....being the big strong Knight in Shining Armor that he is......TILTED the entire dresser forward and
THERE SHE WAS!!!! Bless her heart! She had crawled under there and then couldn't get out!! I took her up in my arms and I was SO HAPPY!!!  We decided to put litter box, food, bed...the whole works in the guest room where we could keep her safe and secure. We go in to check on her and play with her until she gets used to being here.

While Maggie was resting the rest of the day in the comfort of her very own private bedroom.....
I was as busy cleaning house like a mad woman!
I now have TWO clean rooms.......and one extremely loved cat!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Meet Miss Magenta!!

Isn't she a beauty? We have been missing Amber's cats since they went home with her this past December and have had it in our minds to get one of our very own......when the time was right.

So today - as if we did not have enough projects to work on - I took down all the garland and lights and coffee cups and chickens from the shelf above the kitchen French doors and prepared to paint the wall paper. I had already done some of the kitchen last spring.......the parts you can see easily. I wanted to replace the lighted garland with some ivy and sun flowers so I figured I might as well get that area painted while I was at it. Louis Dean was hanging mirrors in my bathroom.....we like to stay busy!

While I was  minding my own business I had this overwhelming compulsion to check out the Seniors for Seniors Program a friend told me about at our Music Jam Session on Monday night. Seniors can adopt a pet that is at least 6 years old...for FREE!

That's when I found Magenta......or 'Maggie' as we call her.
I took one look and knew THIS was THE cat for me! SO I called and she was still available.
That was at 4:45 and they were open til 5:30. I called for Louis Dean to come look - QUICK!
I threw on some clothes (I had on my painting ones and looked awful!) grabbed a cap for my hair and he got a shirt and we were OUT OF HERE!!

We loved her immediately! Filled out the papers and then came the catch!!!
I am a senior but not an old ENOUGH senior! Good thing I am married to an older man!
We traded his info for mine and the adoption was complete!
Maggie had been a beloved pet but her owners moved and they had to give her up.
I was shocked to discover that she had been declawed....ALL FOUR PAWS!
That is SO not right! We will take very good care of this little lady!
I am so happy God whispered in my ear......check this out!
HIS timing is PERFECT!

Now that we have the cat all settled in I better get back to my painting!
Hope my brush hasn't dried out too much!!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Just in the Nick of Time!

My four year old grandson came to visit Saturday afternoon. We had him a full 24 hours and he came just in the nick of time! Louis Dean and I have been working so hard on the bathroom project.....for DAYS now....and really and truly needed a  break! So we worked steady all Saturday morning and afternoon then cleaned up to greet  my son when he brought Levi. I think four is just about THE most precious age EVER!!! This little guy is simply adorable and witty and smart and charming......can you tell I am a grandmother? Or, in this case, a Mimi? We call the cute little things he says 'Levi-ism's.'  He was exactly what we needed this weekend! A little bit of LEVI TIME!

The first order on our agenda was the Saturday evening service at Fellowship Church in Grapevine. We are loving this church! We took Levi with us to the Family Worship Room and he was SO good! As long as he has something to hold in his hands he can use his imagination and entertain himself for a goodly amount of time.  We walked the 1 mile nature walk around Fellowship Lake after the service......just as the weather was being very TEXAS in nature and sliding from an 80 something degree afternoon down into the 40's!

Louis Dean and I walked the one mile. Levi got about THREE times that in! I would pause for a photo op and he would automatically turn and pose......and then HOLD that pose while I finally fiddled with the camera and captured it!

He bubbles over with personality!

Our next stop was McDonald's for a Happy Meal! It has been a LONG time since I actually ATE at McDonald's! They have some healthier choices these days. At least I THINK they are healthier! The chicken snack wrap was pretty good - which is what I had. AND a Diet Coke! Had not had one of THOSE in ages!! Louis Dean didn't want to waste his calories so he had an ice cream cone. Levi ate a six piece chicken nugget Happy Meal.....which came with fries which he DIDN'T LD and I ate them for him!
Dessert was a Shamrock Shake with 3 spoons and 3 straws! Minty GOOD!
Levi said, "I have something NEW to hold in my hands!"
 ....speaking of the toy figure that came with the Happy Meal.

Last stop before heading home was the TNL Asian market on Beltine at Rochelle St. in Irving. They have inexpensive but GOOD produce.....and a huge selection of unusual veggies. The fish market is huge and smells so strong that we refer to this place as 'The STINKY Store!' Levi was very impressed and after taking a whiff of the air said, "Can I just say....PEW Wheeeeee!"
He had been talking about Ramian Noodles and since they had an entire isle devoted to these I let him choose a package. He said, "I know what, Mimi!! Like Batman and ROBIN noodles!!"

We ended our evening with popcorn and Walt Disney's Peter Pan.
Louis Dean enjoyed Levi as much as I did!

We stay up late and sleep late as a general rule so we were DELIGHTED when Levi stayed up late and slept til 8:30! He and I snuggled in bed and I read him some of the same books I once read to his dad.

Ramien Noodles were served for breakfast and after a couple of bites he decided he wanted to try the Rice Krispies. I served him hot chocolate in a tiny cup.....which I refilled several times!
 He poured his own milk from a small pitcher.

Then he bent down to listen to the 'Snap, Crackle and POP' sounds!

It was surprisingly COLD so Levi spent the rest of the morning playing in front of the fireplace with a bucket of cars I keep on hand for little boys! He has such an imagination!

Sunday afternoon we shopped Petsmart for some goldfish to put in Granddad's pond.
Levi looked at every single critter in the store from cats (they had no dogs for adoption that day) to birds to snakes to lizards to fish! We enjoyed our trip there but by that time it was obvious Levi was getting a cold. It could have been the change in weather - who knows?
I asked him if he had a cold and he said, "No, Mimi. I have MUCUS!"
SO after stopping at Home Depot and letting Granddad get some more supplies for the bathroom project...

we took Levi home and put him to bed. Which is where he was when his mother picked him up late that afternoon. Bless his heart! She said, "Levi, are you sick?"
He said, "NO! I'm just TIRED!"

I close with this pic my son took when he dropped Levi off.
We had a blast with him. Four year olds are so easy to entertain and are impressed with just about anything you do for them. They do not ask for much.....mainly they just want attention.
And THAT is something Grandparents are good at giving!
I hope Levi comes back to see us real soon!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Sights and Sounds of SPRING in TEXAS!

It is SPRING in TEXAS! Yesterday Lucy and I went for an early evening walk through the neighborhood and I was savoring all the sights, sounds and smells of SPRING! All along our walk it simply smelled so GOOD! Fresh! As if everyone in the neighborhood were using the same fragrant dryer sheets! You know? The ones that smell so GOOD!

Not only the sights and the smells but the SOUNDS! Bird song fills the air!
The picture on the left bottom is Louis Dean's newest water fountain. It is in the area where the old spa was. The birds are loving it! The sound of a water fountain has GOT to be one of my favorite in all the world! This fountain is still a 'work in progress.' It is made of concrete and gravel and he used 'found' parts. The part you can see he made using an oil pan for a form. I am thinking of buying some 4 inch ceramic tile and putting THAT around it!
The stem of the fountain is a section of black drain he had leftover from a project. It is a real 'Red Neck' creation and I will show a pic of the whole thing once I 'redeem' it and it is not so ugly! I have an idea!!

The birds abound in our back yard! We love watching them and keep a book where we jot down the dates of when we see the different kinds.
The dianthus are doing well having survived our unusually severe winter.

The wisteria belongs to my neighbor, Stephanie, and is just left of our back yard. I LOVE it! SMELLS so good!!

The bottom right pic is of the now huge honeysuckle bush the birds planted for me several years ago. That was the year life was pretty  hard for me and I asked God for a sign of encouragment. He sent me flowers by way of a bird! Special delivery!
It gave off ONE bloom the first year I noticed it growing out in the front bed. I taped it to my journal page and even went back to look at it and prove to myself that it DID, indeed, BLOOM! Because for the next two years it did NOT! Then last year it started really blooming out! Enough for bouquets to mix in with the roses! Honeysuckle is my all time faorite flower.

Another sure fire sign of spring is when the little green geckos begin visiting us in our gazebo!
Last Monday was the very first visit for this year.
Louis Dean calls them 'Insurance Salesmen.'

So where ever YOU are today.....
I hope you find a moment to stop and look at the signs of SPRING all around you!

“Never cut a tree down in the wintertime. Never make a negative decision in the low time. Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods. Wait. Be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come.”

Robert H. Schuller

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Jack Pot Tuesday!!

I really hit the jack pot today! BIG TIME!
To start with - Louis Dean took me to the movies!
The Rite with Anthony Hopkins. That's the only reason he went.
He LOVES Anthony Hopkins and 'good acting.'
Whatever THAT means!!
It was a thought provoking film and I am glad we stayed to the end.
LD and I will be talking about this for a long time.
Starplex on Tuesday was a perfect place for us to go.
We needed a break from all the dust and pollen...
INDOORS as well as out!

Afterwards we hit up Walmart to get a few things.
 I bought some baskets to put in my bathroom cupboard to hide all my 'stuff.'
Then to Home Depot for more supplies.

As we headed down Beltline for home I remembered it is Senior Citizen Day at the Goodwill!
We HAD to drop in and look for a few treasures!

I found the perfect globes for my bathroom!
The ones I bought last week from a different thrift store were too small.
$2.99 each! YES!

I picked up this quilt and sham from Pottery Barn Kids for Raynie's first birthday!
What a deal! $7.99 for the quilt and $0.99 for the sham!

Now to wait til June for her birthday!
 I have tucked it away in a bag underneath the guest room bed.
Hope I don't forget it's there!
I hope to find some great gifts for ALL my grandkids this year!
Keeping my eyes open!

Three garlands crammed into a good size basket for $4.99
The sun flower will go in my kitchen.

I used this one on the back wall of the house facing the gazebo.
My motto is -
"MORE is always BETTER!!"

A bonus to our afternoon was a visit from two pretty ladies!
This is Lana who is a 4 year old cutie!
I have known Marie all her life. It is thrilling to watch young people grow up!
She is an absolutely AMAZING young woman!
I am certain her daughter will be as well!

She kind of liked Louis Dean!
Wish I could show you a picture of the ugly water fountain
he made for the new pond.
Lana noticed a dead goldfish in the back pond.
She told him he should get some UGLY fish to go with his ugly water fountain!!
I have GOT to find a way to redeem this fountain.
It is solid concrete and the ugliest thing you ever saw!
Even Louis Dean agrees!
"NOT one of my better ideas," he said.

Marie brought ten pair of jeans for me to turn into denim quilts.
I am joining a group of ladies at Fellowship Church to make quilts for children in the hospital.
This stack of jeans will provide the fabric for several!

As I write this tonight I now have WALLS!!!
The Sheetrock is UP!
Even the stuff you do to the seams is done!
Just need to sand it all down and we are ready to go on to paper and flooring and fixtures!
AND I am STILL painting and sanding my cupboard!
I think I can see a bathroom for me in the not too distant future!

This has been a JACK POT of a Tuesday!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Shabby Chic? or Rustic Red Neck??

There is a fine line between Shabby Chic and Rustic Red Neck!
I am looking for that line and cannot figure out which side I am leaning towards but I have a sneaking suspicion it is NOT the chic one! There are still two more colors......a beige and a work with in here. Perhaps that will help. This is my bathroom cupboard tucked behind my shower and next to the toilet. I wouldn't worry so much about the inside except for the fact I am hanging mirrors on the opposite wall. Of course I will have baskets FULL of my STUFF on these maybe you won't be able to see them anyway! Hopefully I will be way or another...with this portion of the project by Thursday.

So........shabby it IS! But is it 'CHIC?'

Time will tell........

Friday, March 18, 2011

Our Do It Yourself Adventures.....Red Neck Style!!

Louis Dean and I have a very unique lifestyle! Part class, part hillbilly, part country, part pioneer, part red neck. The Red Neck part seemed to come into play the most today! We did not have to get up and head to Fort Worth as we usually do on Friday mornings to take my mother to the beauty shop. On her Perm/Color days my sister, Deanie, sees that she gets there. SO......since I have been yearning for my bathroom remodel to move forward (since we started this in OCTOBER, remember??) we decided to devote the whole day to
Get 'R DONE!
Well, the best laid plans of mice and men, Love! You know how THAT goes! We had coffee in the gazebo and made it a shorter 'sit and stupor' kind of morning. Louis Dean proceeded to gather up his materials and tools for whatever he needed to do to prepare for putting up that all important first piece of Sheetrock! (I think it had to do with plumbing since he turned the water off!) While HE did THAT.....I proceeded to paint the first coat of white on my bathroom well as take out the trash, feed and water the dog, make beds, vacuum and do the dozens of small but necessary tasks that need to be done each and every day just to keep a home running rather smoothly!

I fried potatoes and onions together for lunch....
I never fail to think of my younger son, Ben, when I cook this. When he was a teenager I would keep boiled potatoes in the fridge ready for frying. He LOVED them and ate them on a regular basis!
They are best fried up in bacon grease as when I would make them for Ben. Now I use a little olive oil as Louis Dean has heart disease....and let's face it! Nobody but teenagers can eat things fried with bacon grease and get away with it!

To go with our potatoes I made us some old fashioned
Bacon/Lettuce/Tomato Sandwiches WITH slices of sweet onion and real mayo! (I KNOW! I should NOT use real mayo!)

We took a lunch break and rested a bit before LD went back to
'Gathering up his tools.'

At 3:30 this afternoon he shut off the water and at 4:05 we FINALLY trundled the first 4 X 8 foot piece of Sheetrock OFF the open truck bed where he had cut out all the little holes and rectangles for the water and electric things.

This went relatively well. We had to go through the gate and an area of our yard that looks like 'Sanford and Son' on a BAD day!! We have a door to our bedroom from the back patio and we made it INSIDE the house! After a lot of maneuvering and positioning and calculating......we discovered what we should have known in the first place! You CANNOT get a full piece of Sheetrock through a small door opening and upright into a very small scale bathroom!

We had to cut it! Or LOUIS DEAN had to cut it! Now you know all this construction really messes up one's house! That's why I have paid special attention to keeping everything as clean as possible since this whole remodel has taken so long. Remember The RED NECK BATHROOM at Christmas? When I covered the walls with red checked sheets and table cloths and even put up garland and a tiny Christmas tree?
However dusty everything is and no matter how tracked the carpet has become.....I still make up the bed every morning complete with all the pillows and shams! SO? Just GUESS where Louis Dean cut this whole 4 X 8 foot Sheetrock?? On our BED! He said, "There is NO way I am hauling that thing back out and in again!" SO he cut it then and there and PUT IT UP! DONE DEAL!

He is a Man Among Men!!!

Tomorrow our adventure will begin once more! But now I must close this post, pour him a glass of wine and proceed to tell him how amazingly WONDERFUL he is!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Spring Fever!!!

Also known as Allergies!!
Just about the time the weather lures us outside I am zapped with ALLERGIES!
It doesn't help that as soon as we get up in the mornings we open up the two sets of French doors as well as our bedroom door and often times our front door as well!
I love hearing the sounds of life! Birds, squirrels, the wind blowing......
It is all worth the sneezing!

These are the cute little tissues Summer bought for me at Tuesday Morning .....
on Tuesday afternoon!
She came over straight from work and we headed out to do a bit of thrift store shopping.

I picked up several books......
plus I bought Summer a copy of James Dobson's 'Parenting is Not for Cowards.'
She is on an exciting journey in life....parenting a baby girl!
She will do well.

I think I am buying books faster than I can read them!

Once read, I either give them to someone else to read,  list them on eBay or
donate them to the library at Heritage Senior Citizens Center.

Summer and I returned home with our appetites ready for Tortilla Soup.
This is straight from the jar (HEB brand) with some sour cream and bits of rotisserie chicken added.

Topped with chips and avocado.......delicious!!

Then we kicked back and watched this movie!
We had BOTH been wanting to see it and missed the theater showing.
A wonderful Tuesday and I so enjoy spending time with my oldest daughter.
Since she has a baby now....
'Tuesday at Mom's' is an excellent opportunity for her to get a good night's sleep!

Today was perfect weather for working in the yard.
Topping out at 80 degrees!
I love this perpetual calendar Louis Dean and I bought at the Cracker Barrel last year!
I am torn between trying to get my bathroom done or getting a handle on the weeds that are THRIVING!

I decided to do some of BOTH!
Most of the house plants I brought in for the winter are nearly dead now!
Hope to bring some back to life and then give them away next fall.

This English Ivy USED to be a houseplant!
I love having it as ground cover and planted another pot from the house this afternoon.

My mirror is done and ready to hang as soon as I get walls in my bathroom!

So is this cupboard! Parts of my bathroom to be are scattered all over the house!

The ceiling is a done deal!!
Although the light 'globes' I bought do not fit.
I paid forty-five cents apiece for them!
Louis Dean made fun of me for putting them up anyway....
the bulb is holding them in place!
But they will have to do until I find something that will actually fit!

THIS is the cupboard I am working on now....
as soon as I get this blog posted!
We have stripped it, sanded it, primed it, and then Louis Dean had to use wood putty
to fill in some holes. Now to sand it - again - and prime it - again -
then I will FINALLY get to put on the first coat of paint!

LD put insulation on the wall that separates the bathrooms.
We have lots of building materials literally laying around the place.
Hope we use up a lot of it on the projects we plan to do this year.

At days end we will retire to the gazebo where we began our day.
I will journal and read and sip some herbal tea,
 listen to the birds as they do their courting songs about dusk time.
I am reading aloud to Louis Dean a biography on Willie Nelson.
It is such a good book that every time we take a break we try to get a few more pages read.

In the spring,
at the end of the day,
you should smell like dirt.

 Woman's Day Magazine, Apr. 1, 2007