Sunday, July 18, 2021

Family Visits in the Country!

 Friday morning we got up early to have coffee before going down to pick up Dean and Sherry.
It was shortly after 9:30 when we stopped for donuts and sausage rolls at Mart Donuts on Texas Ave.
Then we drove an hour and a half or so to Hamilton, Texas. That's where Sherry's hospitable parents live - and even though they spend their summers up North on church building missions - they still offer their home as a half way meeting place for when Roy and Ruth Ann come down to visit with Dean and Sherry, and in this case, US as well!

Louis Dean and Ruth Ann go way back to when she was just 15 years old.
Ruth Ann is the sister of Ellen, Louis Dean's beloved first wife.

We were all so glad to see each other!

Sherry's parents have such good neighbors to watch after their place when they are away for so long.
This is Ken and his wife is Linda and they joined us for a good visit and lunch!

Louis Dean and Ken are both musicians and we were totally enthralled when Ken started playing the harmonica!
Such an interesting couple. Ken is from Indiana and met Linda when stationed here in Texas in the military. They have had a fascinating life! And as it turned out, Linda and Ken were neighbors with Les and Jean when they all lived in Irving back in the 70's! Good neighbors make good friends!

We all brought offerings to the is Ruth Ann slicing up some onions and her heirloom tomatoes in Jean's country kitchen!

We ate lunch country style at the country table!

And the food was country GOOD!!!
I didn't have room in the collage for all the pictures!
There was veggies, crackers, dips and chips.
Dean made his smoked ribs......
Sherry made her potato salad, and famous deviled eggs!
See the beautiful plate of Ruth Ann's tomatoes?
She also brought pinto beans and drinks and home made ice cream!
Linda contributed a zucchini casserole that was delicious along with her home canned pickled beets and dill pickles.
I brought brownies and Caesar Salad.

Country eating at its finest!!!

After our meal and clean up, the menfolk visited and we ladies gathered around the Bernina Bernette Serger that my friend, Dee, gave me last year. I've never used one before but both Ruth Ann and Sherry have. They worked well over an hour and got it all threaded properly and sewing.
I will take it in to be serviced next week and then they will give me lessons on how to use it!

We had such a good visit......
but I was so sleepy the entire time.
It was like I had been drugged!

We cleaned up their house and left it as we found it and loaded up for our trip back to the ranch and Roy and Rith Ann back to Breckenridge.

The lay of the land is so different just 100 miles away.
I nodded off so many times my head would jerk me awake as it fell.
We stopped for a plumbing part, a bathroom break and Home Depot before arriving back at the ranch shortly after 7:30. I was in bed asleep by 8:00 and stayed in bed until well after 9:00 Saturday morning!
I must have been really and truly tired!

Good morning, Kitties!!

These two are great company for one another and stay pretty much together all day.
I got in the habit of sending Amber daily pictures of Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dum!
They will going off to visit with her for a week or two in August.

We did our normal routine this morning and then prepared for an impromptu visit from Nita and Mike, and Lonnie and Michele! We were so excited!

We did some serious front porch sitting sipping our Texas ice tea -SWEET tea for Nita and Mike!
They like real sugar so I pulled out my honeysuckle simple syrup. That worked!

Then we went down to check out the critters.

Mike and Dean did some 'car engine' talking.

We looked at all the chickens in the various pens and some roosters and chickens that were running around.
Before they got the mops - aka Great Pyrenees - the chickens all roamed free during the day.
That's when they noticed the dogs liked to eat them!

These dogs do great in watching the goats and keeping the coyotes off the ranch!

Lonnie enjoyed seeing everything.

It was so good to see him!

He uses a cane but gets around really well.
He does have some vision problems they are working on.
I loved watching Lonnie and Michele together.
Seeing them was a loving reminder of how important it is to be gentle with each other as well as with yourself. Lonnie does not have much in the way of short term memory - but recalls long term well. 
He knows he loves his 'Beautiful Bride' as he calls Michele and it shows in how he speaks to her and looks at her. I want to be more like Michele.

All too soon it was time to say goodbye!

What a blessing it is to visit with family!

We went back to our projects after they left.....
Louis Dean organizing his tools and planting the three rose bushes we bought yesterday.
I fed and watered all my flowers and herb garden, fixed us a good supper of fajita soup I had brought frozen from home along with cornbread muffins.
Then I finished up with my oil painting for this trip, cleaned my brushes and put all that away and prepared the table to do water based painting projects tomorrow.

I have just one more session on the Santa Express and then glazing before it is DONE!

I do believe this has been the most enjoyable canvas I have painted in a very long time.
No labor or anxiety at all!
This is a large painting and I find them so much easier than small ones.
Details on them are not nearly as hard for me.
I worked on a small canvas - another Christmas scene - but this one is from a photo I took back in 2015. I work on it a little while at a time. Tiny details really get to me!

Tomorrow Sherry and I hope to capture another swarm hive at a neighbor's place nearby.
We have two more days before we leave for home on Tuesday!

It's really GOOD to be in the country!!


I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I'd say you really do live the good life there and with the addition of family and friends have all you need. It's good others can share in some of your country life.

MadSnapper said...

It's great that you have that house that's halfway so that you can meet and not have to drive 200 miles instead of 100 miles. It's that way here in Florida to you can drive 6 to 10 Mile and Telegraph France in the way things look and if you go ninety to a hundred miles it's really different

Arlene @Nanaland said...

What a blessing to see Lonnie at the farm and doing so well after all he has been through. God Bless Michelle...good care givers are so important. Loved seeing you with the extended family and how nice to have a place to meet up. Looking forward to seeing your serger projects.

Changes in the wind said...

How wonderful you all could meet up and share a dinner and it looked delicious. Nice to see Lonnie and that he is doing better. The Santa express is fantastic:)

Ginny Hartzler said...

I actually think my favorite here is your photo of the two kitties looking at each other, how sweet! What lots of fun visits you have been having! And the food looks wonderful. Chicken eating dogs is something new to me!

photowannabe said...

There is nothing like good fellowship with friends and family.
You have surrounded yourselves with the very best it seems.
Every meal you show looks like a banquet to me...
Love your Santa Express...a real work of art.
Great photos of "Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dum..(:0)
Sue of photowannabe

Carole said...

Strange you were so tired - did you double check your pills?? Cheers

Deanna Rabe said...

You thrive in the country! I'm so glad you have that place there on the ranch! Glad you have so many good times with family and friends, too!

Debbie said...

looks like a great spot for a halfway point visit and a great place to visit with everyone!! it was nice to see lonnie!!

and all that food, YUM!!

Vee said...

What a nice family gathering. Lonnie is looking well. It is good to see after all his troubles back along. What I love about your family is that everyone on all sides gets along and enjoys one another. It's wonderful. I hope the bee gathering has gone well.