Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Starting Off a New Week!

Monday was a busy day as we wanted to get a bit more done on putting the dining room back together. As I was working in there, I went out through the sewing room to get some things I'd stored in the gazebo - and the door would only open part way. Louis Dean had propped the overhang up with a sturdy post some months back but now it really needed some very intentional repair work. And Louis Dean got right on it and worked pretty much all day using hammer and nails and that hard putty stuff with the strong man's arms on the front of the can.

He did it and the door opens now and he repaired where the wood had pulled away from the house! We will paint it when we get back from the country!

The living room was already done and it's my favorite room to sit in right now!

I think the doll cases look so good!
Everything is so clean it sparkles!

Starting with the doll case on the right......

These are Louis Dean's I Love Lucy dolls - purchased with Granddaughter Chandy in mind.

Still in the box!

The Indian doll collection.....

featuring Little Reaoma in the front and center!

The two lower shelves hold the Karate Gis - all embroidered by Ellen.

The doll case on the left has all his Little House dolls on the top shelf.

Amber and I barely got them all in there!

Then the Victorian dolls of which the one in blue velvet was Amber's - she has dark hair and blue eyes.

Finally the Oriental collection!

Louis Dean dearly loves looking at all of his 'dollies' as he calls them.
He has the papers on all the Little House ones.

We needed Monday - he to fix the back of the house and me to rest and recover.
I didn't feel well and went to bed at 7:00!

I woke up Tuesday feeling much better and we managed to pack up and get on the road by 1:30!

We had been away from the ranch for 3 weeks and 3 days!

It was so good to be back!

While I love them, they are in front of the deck and block Louis Dean's view of his garden.
They may not be here much longer! 
Plus some sunflowers are growing smak dab in the middle of his garden and they will need to be removed! We weren't here 10 minutes before he was out mowing and pulling up weeds.

I went out and took a few pics......I think these are his black eyed peas.

Some kind of squash which we did not plant but apparently they blew over from Dean's garden. Win! WIN!!

I'm a bit discouraged about my gardening abilities - or lack  thereof!
I planted sunflowers around the perimeter of the garden - and they did not come up where I put them but seem to have wandered all over the places coming up here and there.

The fig tree our master gardener friend, Sheryl, gave us is looking wonderful!

Bits of wildflowers growing here and there......

I love the flowers!

Look who is here visiting!!
Roy and Ruth Ann drove down last Thursday from Breckenridge and have their RV over at Riesel in a RV Park.
Grandson Robert arrived earlier on Tuesday and is visiting with Dean and Sherry.
So we had our own mini-reunion!
Roy and Ruth Ann were going back to their RV and Louis Dean was staying at the ranch  while Dean, Sherry, Robert and I went to out Waco bee meeting.

There was a little trouble with a tire on the way so our beekeeper sister Rosie met us at the junction of Highway 31 and 84. She and I went on to Bellmead to have dinner at El Conquistador while Dean and Sherry and Robert dealt with the car trouble.

It's not a Tuesday bee meeting night without Mexican food!
Margaritas are a given!
I had lots of compliments on my hair from where I posted on Facebook and I really appreciate the kind words. I have been working through this thinning hair situation and have purchased a couple of wigs and several 'hair toppers' that I used to call 'wiglets' back in the 70's.
The wigs are hot and I tend to keep pulling them down but they do look nice. 
Probably best worn in cold weather.
I have a lace front 'topper' that works well and a couple of others I wear from time to time.
The one I'm wearing here is now my favorite.
While not a dense hairpiece, it has enough 'extra' to blend in.
It features a honeycomb base where you pull your own hair through with a crochet hook.
When it arrived I had just had my hair cut super short - all over!
I had to wait a month before I had enough hair to pull through the cap!
This was the second time I've worn it and I am loving the feeling of hair again!!

Do any of y'all follow the glamorous 97-year-old grandma named Doris?
She's Sassy Gran Doris and I have so much fun watching her!
Her grandson has made her famous!

Well, Rosie and I had a good time talking and catching up with each other before we went on to the bee meeting and met up with Dean, Sherry and Robert.
They ended up having to drive back to the ranch and getting Robert's car.
A storm blew in and Robert did a great job driving us home!

Louis Dean and I sat outside on the deck watching the storm in all its glory!
But when lightning struck first to the right and then straight down over at Mr. Jackson's place - I said it was time to go in!
So we lingered a little longer in the front room listening to the wind and the rain before calling it a night.

I do so love a good storm!!!

Monday, May 23, 2022

I'm Loving My Life!!

My carpet arrived bright and early on Thursday morning!
I knew it would!
I put my phone beside me when we went to bed on Wednesday and told Louis Dean not to be surprised if they called at 8:00 and sure enough they did!
Or HE did! 
ONE carpet man!
He spoke with a heavy Mexican accent so when he said he'd be here in what I thought was 50 minutes was really15 minutes!!

Louis Dean went to the door to let him in.
He was a bit overwhelmed when he saw the two rooms and a hall he was to do and at first didn't think we'd ordered enough while I got myself put together....he measured and found out he had the right amount,

Then he questioned if he could do the job by himself or go find a helper.
Wall to wall furniture and it was all HEAVY! Even after I'd emptied all the shelves and drawers.
Not to worry! He figured iut how to move every single piece out and that was quite a feat!
Louis Dean helped him a little but but not a lot.
We were so impressed.
I'll call him the Carpet Guy because I never got his name, well, he said it would take all day to do the two rooms and hall!

And sure enough - it did!!

This amazing man worked steady from 8:30 - 5:00!
The kitchen and sewing rooms were packed tight and it's a good thing we had back doors because I had to go out the bedroom door, walk around and come in the kitchen.

While he worked, Louis Dean and I sat outside on the driveway and had coffee.
Later we even took anap!

Once he got the dining room done, he moved all the living room pieces in there.

We were so impressed and I intend to call the carpet company in the morning and tell them what a great job he did! All by himself!!

I left at 4:15 to go up and get that sonogram on my carotid arteries and when I got back he was packing up. What a blessing he was and I am so sorry I don't even know his name!
Maybe I can find out when I call the store tomorrow.

I walked around smiling so big as I started putting a few things back in the living room.
It took awhile to clear the pathways where we had piled up all the debris.
It was a lot of hard work getting ready for the carpet and now it was going to be even harder to put it all back! Everything needed to be cleaned and organized.

Amber came over Friday and helped me with the doll cases.
Her dad had stayed up long after I'd gone to bed cleaning the glass and mirrors.
She and I worked non stop for over 2 hours putting the glass shelves back in after Amber had cleaned them and then filling the cases back up with his dollies!
After Amber went back to Dallas to pick the kids up from school, I worked on for over four more hours! Just on the doll cases!

I'll take pics of them soon but they have never looked prettier!
The top shelf on the left case holds the Little House on the Prairie dolls.
The second shelf has Victorian ones and the third one is all his Oriental doll collection.
The bottom shelve is not full but it has some patriotic things plus all of Louis Dean's awards and keepsakes from his Home Depot days.

The top shelf of the case on the right has his I Love Lucy dolls.
They have never been displayed as prominently before and we are loving looking at them.
He bought them years ago with Chandy in mind so she will inherit this collection.

The second shelf features all the Indian dolls of which one is mine - made by Reaoma and gifted to me by her daughter, Pam. 
The third shelf is other collectables including some clowns I have with the bottom shelf holds all the karate gis he's kept - many of which feature his beloved Ellen's embroidery work.

By the end of the day Friday, the living room was done!

All clean and decorated and candles lit!!

Louis Dean was sitting on the driveway when Jesse came home.

Look what he found on the curb up the street!!
The neighbor had just set it out 30 minutes before.
Jesse walked up to the door to make sure it was okay to get it and the fellow said there was absolutely nothing wrong with it other than a little 'wear and tear' AND it has a Queen pull out so it's a sleeper sofa!
Win! WIN!!!
Jesse and I had just been talking on Thursday night about him needing a couch!
God was listening. God is always listening.

Saturday morning Louis Dean and I were still marveling at how beautiful the carpet is!
Before I started putting the dining room back together, I needed to do some laundry and clean the kitchen. 

Amber sent me a text that this was opening day at Hawaiian Falls - just in case we wanted to come out and join them!

The timing was perfect!

We needed a break and I'm so glad we went!

I love the way Louis Dean looks at me!

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than with family??

Amber and Benjamin grew up with Friday night Popcorn, Cokes and Movies throughout the year and every day possible in the summer at Hurricane Harbor!
It's only natural that Amber has continued these dearly loved traditions with her own family!

And true to form - Louis Dean went to the pool in his overalls!!!
He says next time he'll wear a swim suit!
We both now have season passes!

He was wanting a hot dog and I wanted a cold drink so I went off to join a long line at concessions!  After nearly 40 minutes I was up at the window ordering a Hawaiian Falls souvenir cup for $14.99 with FREE refills the day of purchase and $1.50 refills the rest of the season. Win! WIN!!! Plus I upgraded his request to a chili cheese dog with fries!

When I got back to our loungers - he was GONE!
But he came back a few minutes later ( after I had snacked on a few of his fries ) carrying not one but TWO hot Dogs!
He wasn't in the same place I had been - that's for sure!
Apparently there was more than one place to get hot fogs and he had just walked up and ordered them. No line. Not fair!

It was a great day to be out in the sun and fun and water!
I walked the Lazy River and did some time in the Wave Pool and enjoyed watching the Hawaiian videos on the big screen.

The park closed at 5:00 and by 6:00 I had showered and shampooed and started working on the dining room. Finding the glass shelves for the case that holds my crystal and glasses was a trick! We still can't find the three small ones for the curio cabinet!

We spent Saturday evening in the gazebo with our wine and a book by Pearl S. Buck.
The weather has been such a gift!
I turned the AC off, opened up the doors and turned on the attic fan when we got home from Hawaiian Falls. What a blessing to have this coolness at this time of the year in Texas!

Jesse got home and decided to roast some coffee beans so we would all have some really fresh coffee for Sunday morning!

He has a coffee roaster and made himself a cooler for the beans.
I had no idea how important it was to cool the beans immediately after roasting.
Here he is measuring out the beans.

You can plainly see that they are green!
Did you know that coffee is a seed from a kind of cherry?


They start popping and Jesse was moving quickly so they wouldn't burn!

This is the cooling machine he made.

The roasted beans!
Notice the darker color now.....

And then to celebrate this Saturday night.....
a perfect cup of coffee!

I woke up early this Sunday morning and started making a good breakfast - biscuits, bacon and scrambled eggs!

Amber had saved seats for us when we got to church!

I made a salad sampler to have along with the leftover goulash I had made on Friday.
This is the corn salad I made from Estelle's!
I adlibbed a bit since I didn't have the exact same vegetables but it was still very good!

And that's a wrap from the weekend!
We had meant to leave for the country tomorrow but now it will be Tuesday morning as we just didn't quite have our act together!
I pretty much took the day off and had myself a nice long nap this afternoon!

I'll take tomorrow to put some of the dining room back together while Louis Dean gets the truck all loaded and ready.

We will stop on our way Tuesday at Amber's and pick up our cats.

This was Samantha two years ago!

And Tabitha!

What joy they have brought to our lives!
For the last six weeks or so they have been over at the Bells who love them every bit as much as we do. Louis Dean has been especially missing them so I thought we'd just take them to the country with us and then bring them back to Amber until mid June when Jesse gets into his apartment. Then we will have our cats back - but I can tell you right now I will be missing my son! This is the most we have been able to be together since he graduated from college.
I'm not ready to give this time up yet!!!

There's this boy that holds my heart and he calls me Mom.

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Prepping For Carpet, Doctor Visits and Tuesday Treasures!

 Monday! Monday!!!
Amber normally shops for her weekly groceries at Target on Monday.
This is not really a dreaded chore for her - although I have to tell you it IS a huge undertaking to shop for groceries and all other household needs for her family of six!
She, however, has made that her own personal time to BE!
She enjoys shopping and is a genius with her Target app getting the very best buys possible on her everyday needs.

However, she did her shopping on Sunday afternoon so she could come over here and help me pack up the living room in preparation for the carpet which is coming  TOMORROW!
'Tomorrow' being Thursday, May 19th!

The dining room was the hardest.
All the China, crystal and and every drawer and cupboard had to be emptied.
I carried most of it out load by load and armful by armful to the deck box outside the kitchen French doors. Louis Dean carried out the six or seven FULL tubs of heavy things.

The living room wasn't hard but it was not a one woman job.
Louis Dean's huge doll collection had to be handled carefully and packed accordingly.
I had already moved all the debris out from the tables and under the tables.

The dining room is a done deal and it feels NAKED in there!!

Amber and I work together good as a team and when we were done, she gave me a lesson on how to access the Firestick on the TV enabling us to watch Paramount +, Netflix and more.
How exciting!!!
And Jesse is hooking us up to a thing that will extend out Internet to all parts of the house!
This is going to be so nice!!
Sometimes I want to do my journal entry in the den to keep Louis Dean company - but the signal drops and I have to  go back to the sewing room where our router is,
Once Jesse does this for us - we can have quality reception for the Internet all the way from the sidewalk in front of the house to the back fence behind the house and all the rooms in between! 

Just as we finished the doll cases - my sweet neighbor, Tamara, dropped off three fresh burger patties and four hot dogs + potato salad and coleslaw! And buns!!
I went right out and put them on the grill!
Win! WIN!!!
It was perfect timing!!

Thank you, Tamara and Jim!!

We ate and visited, and Amber left and I took a little nap.
My stomach has been upset lately for no good reason.

I rallied around and freshened up my hair and makeup and drove over to pick June up for this month's Eat Love Pray meeting at First Christian Church.
Normally, I am in the country at this time of the month but, due to doctor appointments, I was able to attend!

June looked especially pretty and I loved catching up with all my friends - but I did not get my head in the game and take any pictures. Not even ONE!
What is WRONG with me?
I blame it on my stomachache.
It was a salad supper and the food looked amazing and I had a fleeting thought to take a pic - but then I started talking to a friend...... 

I will share this one I snagged off of Pastor Deb's Facebook page.
She and her husband, James, celebrate 50 years of marriage this week and the church surprised them with a party after church on Sunday!
I'm just sorry I didn't know about it or I would have been there applauding their love and commitment to one another.
Deb is as beautiful inside as she is here in her stunning black and white dress with the red top!

Last time I took June to an Eat Love Pray meeting, it was winter and the night was dark and my friend, Virginia, drove her home.
She was so pleased that I not only picked her up - but I took her home, too.
We sat long in her driveway talking after we got there.
She wears a cochlear implant but still stills has a hard time hearing - so I told her all about the prayer requests of the evening.

I love that the Eat Love Pray gatherings focus on the needs we ladies have.
the prayer requests are typically not for others - but for ourselves. Lady to lady - we pray for one another. Pastor Deb led out in the share time and a few others followed, voicing their personal requests. There was maybe 5 who shared out of the more than 20 in attendance. 
You know how we are.....we keep quiet and for whatever reason .....we keep our needs to ourselves. I was doing the very same thing.
 Just as Deb was about to close up - I jerked my hand up and said, "Okay!! I do have a request....."
Maybe I feel a little bit shy in asking for prayer since I am not a member of this group. 
But I do love these ladies and I know they love me......
Last time I was there I asked prayer that I would be the wife Louis Dean needs.
That proved to be a good request as I have needed prayers and I do believe those prayers were answered,
This night I asked prayer that I would have the wisdom I need to be a parent to my grown children. My oldest son and daughter. Jesse and Summer.
Some of you may have read between the lines of my journal posts and discerned that Jesse is in the middle of some important life changes.
I have been there and done that myself.
I had a life threatening event happen to me that prompted me to take a serious look at myself and where I was and where I was heading.
The same kind of thing happened to Jesse.
I try not to tell anything but my own story so I'll not say more but I do desire prayers that I can be a support and comfort to him.
And Summer is 58 years old and still my little girl.
I am naturally concerned about her - her life, her health, her welfare......
I don't know of many books written on how to parent adult children.

I think - bottom line - I need to love them, accept them and their decisions, listen to them, comfort and support them in whatever manner I can....and above all ....pray for them.

I came home feeling so much better than when I left!
Louis Dean wanted me to come out and see the moon.
We missed the eclipse the night before but granddaughter Chandy sent us some great pics! 

We sat out for an hour or more enjoying the time together.

And every time we sit at this table - we thank the Lord and ask him to bless Dean and Lynn.
They are the friends who gifted us this great outdoor living set when they moved to Florida.
They could have sold it for hundreds of dollars - and yet they gave it to us.
Someday I hope to gift someone with something special like they did for us.

Tuesday morning we had our quiet time in the gazebo.
The living room is not comfortable and the den is crowded with all the debris brought in so we are hanging out more and more in the gazebo these days.
This plant is called cow parsley and I could not bring myself to pull it up!
It's so pretty! 

Louis Dean had an appointment with his cardiologist Tuesday afternoon and I took him
I am just now wrapping my mind around the fact that I am a caretaker.
He often gets lost these days even when he's going someplace he frequents.
And he can't remember what the doctor tells him so it's just best for me to take him and go in with him. Here we are waiting ....

I have next to NO hair so I am trying out all kinds of hairpieces - 
this one has a honeycomb base that you pull your own hair through.
I'm so thankful for all the things available - from makeup to hair pieces to joint replacements to clothes to dental care to you name it! Growing old gracefully requires a certain amount of research and work!

It was 3:30 when we got back from his cardiologist.
 He got a fairly good report. His heart is beating slow that Dr. Uppalapatti was concerned and has scheduled him to wear a heart monitor. We will do that on June first.

I dropped him off and headed up to the thrift store to meet Brenda.
I told her for two seconds I considered not going. Then I decided that in order to be a good caretaker of Louis Dean, I need to take care of myself.
So off I went and I had such a good time visiting, shopping and having tea with Brenda!
She's my best friend and we have known each other for such a long time.
She and Billy love me and they love Louis Dean. Even when he's stubborn and irritable.
They still love us after our Alaskan cruise together where I'm not sure we got more than a couple of pictures of Louis Dean smiling!

So here are my Tuesday Treasures!

This is a housewarming gift for me son, Jesse.
 He will be in his new apartment in June and will be needing lots of basics.

You can tell this was never used!
AND it was half price! Green tags were the 50% off color that day!

Everyone needs a mixer and this is a vintage Sunbeam Mixmaster!
Chrome with brown trim and I just could not pass it up!
Will be perfect for Jesse!

So will this Rachel Ray olive oil ceramic thing.

Now for my favorite treasure of the day!!!

Talk about shabby chic!!!
I LOVE this!!!
You want to know a secret?
It was a 2X....but I am supposing it must have shrunk!
My friend, Teresa, and her mom are attending the opening of the new Downton Abbey movie tonight and if I lived closer to them, I would wear this and go with them!

Brenda is my own personal shopper!
As she is looking for her jeans and pants - she finds some for me as well!!

Books for $0.75 less the senior discount.

I love the distressed marble coasters! $1 each - less the discount!

I'm a sucker for signage! 
This is hanging in our bedroom where I can see it as soon as I open my eyes in the mornings.

Speaking of mornings......

I was up early this Wednesday morning for my primary care check up!
I got a good report and and the lab results so far have been good with no flags.
Still waiting on the results from one more.
I had one of those TIA strokes back in February and I told the doctor about it.
I remember exactly where and when it was.....
02-22-@ 2:22
I recovered within hours after it happened so that was good.
Dr. Abraham has ordered a test to make sure my carotid artery is not blocked.
I do that tomorrow at 4:15.
Perfect timing since the carpet people are coming in the morning and they will be done by then!

I came home to find Louis Dean working in the back yard!
He's got this water fountain all fixed up and added blue and green coloring to the water!

This is his new project and we are both so excited about it!
That 'box' was where I had a spa back in the day.
Then we turned it into a sandbox.
Soon it will be a flower box. Or a shrub box. It's semi shade so I will figure it out.

This area has not been pretty in over 20 years!

But that's about to change!

Louis Dean has a plan and you know how much he loves a good project!

I love it when Louis Dean can go outside and play in the dirt!!