Sunday, August 27, 2017

Sunday after Harvey...

Just a thank you for all your comments on my previous post concerning Hurricane Harvey. Yes, our families in the hill country and south of Houston faired well. Daughter had some flooding at their place, but nothing that they couldn't handle. She said that the animals (horses, chickens, dogs, cats) were freaked, but they all survived it. Haven't talked to BIL in Pearland (South of Houston) this morning yet... but yesterday, they were fine too.

Seems like some areas were hit hard, others barely hit. The pictures look awful along the coast, but these were probably the hardest hit. They will definitely need help and prayers to get through the next few weeks or months.  

My daughter told me a strange story this morning. She said that they were preparing for the hurricane Friday evening (getting the dogs inside, making sure the chickens and horses were Ok, etc.) and she was on the phone when their cat 'Cocoa' (who is brother to our cats, Tux and Julie) suddenly started howling loudly in the doorway. Then he ran at her, grabbed her leg, and bit her. She dropped the phone and pushed him away. (He is usually a very sweet calm cat - same age as our cats - 14) He ran off and then came back and did the same thing. It was like he was freaked by something. Later he was fine... acting perfectly normal. I told her that animals sometimes sense things... and apparently the incoming storm was responsible? I don't know. Possibly the eclipse and the storm affected him??? 

(Cocoa is the white 'siamese looking' kitten in the pictures on the right sideline of this blog. My grand daughter is holding him... but this is an old pic -14 years ago)

Anyway, to get off that subject and onto another: I made a new recipe for buttermilk biscuits this morning. DH has been after me to try it. He loves biscuits. So I did... and it was a keeper. I'm posting a picture of the magazine it came from, the biscuit pic in the magazine, and the recipe for any who might want to try it. I don't think it's an unusual biscuit recipe, but I don't make biscuits often, so am happy to find one we like.

magazine recipe came from...
picture of the buttermilk biscuits
might have to enlarge to read

I will say that I halved this recipe since I was only cooking for DH and myself. It still made about 7 medium sized biscuits.

And the Fall semester pottery classes resumed this week. It was good to be back. After a whole summer of not working with clay, I wondered if my muscle memory would work when I got back on the pottery wheel. Luckily it did. Now next week is Labor Day weekend and the campus will be closed... so I hope to get a few days in the studio later on this week to finish what I started yesterday. 

Have a good week... stay safe, and please keep those who were affected by Hurricane Harvey in your thoughts and prayers. 


Friday, August 25, 2017

Thursday... pre-Hurricane Harvey

It's Thursday evening here in Texas and the news today is all about Hurricane Harvey in the Gulf. It seems that it has suddenly gone from a tropical storm to a hurricane with the potential of causing havoc due to the possibility of it hanging around over the area for a few days.

I just spoke to my daughter in the hill country and she said that people are acting crazy and buying out the grocery stores - almost all the bottled water was gone when she stopped by on her way home from work. 

Their area does have flooding problems so there is cause for some concern. Lots of road closures due to flooding is an issue.  We are a bit worried as not only is there a problem for the next few days, but we had all planned to go down next week for our grandson's Air Force Basics Graduation in San Antonio. I really hope the weather stations are exaggerating and giving worse case scenarios that won't come true.

But since Harvey is supposed to reach landfall this evening (it's Friday morning here now), I guess we will know soon enough. I truly hope that those on the coast have evacuated, but knowing the South that I grew up in, many will not. 

Please keep all this area in your thoughts and prayers... 

Saturday, August 19, 2017

need to laugh? Try these...

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at the Vet

I love this last one as it looks like the black ferals 
around our neighborhood...

OK, just a few more

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OK, that's it. After hearing some of the news this evening, I desperately needed a distraction. And although many of these are probably ones you've seen before, they are still funny... 

 And this was our last year's calendar we had on the kitchen wall:

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Photos that speak... and other things

Have you ever noticed that certain photos seem to capture a feeling, or a moment? Something someone wrote recently made me think of this. So..oo I went through some of my old photos trying to find examples of this and here is what I found:

Ghost holdup in her favorite spot

Ghost helping me read
Ghost as a kitten in the front window
my work station in front room (with Tux)

Jack on top of ship shelf

Photo taken after our slate floors were put in 2005

cats in computer room

Rose in blinds' shadow

Now I realize that possibly these may only speak to me - but I thought I'd share anyway.

And for those of you who enjoy tea and teacups (which I do also) here's a few more - usually taken at teatime here at home (which is also reading time).  

 First a poster that says it all...


As you can see, I like tea cups... and have collected quite a few which I use daily. However, I also have some others that I don't use as much anymore because they have the gold or platinum trim that cannot go into the microwave. I do use them for company on occasion, but the occasions have become fewer as time goes on.  

But I will show you my MIL's tea service that I had given her years ago, and was returned to me after she passed. It's one of my very favorites. She and I were probably the only ones who ever used it when I visited.

Post note: the books that you see in the photos with the teacups are not necessarily good reads (of course 'some' were), but my dear friend keeps me with a constant supply of books since she knows I read daily (in the afternoon and at bedtime... as well as anytime I'm stuck somewhere with time to spare).  However, I did just read one that surprised me... because I didn't care for the cover... but the book itself was very good. It was "The Shoemaker's Wife" by Adriana Trigiani.

Have a wonderful rest of the week and hopefully I didn't bore you too much with things that possibly 'only speak to me' but...

Perhaps you have photos that 'only speak to you' that you might like to share??


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Quilt show... my favorites... and other stuff

Today was the first day of the Plano Quilt Show. Both my dear friend and my DIL make beautiful quilts. I make quilts, but just for the fun of it... functional quilts that serve as cat quilts for sofas, or baby quilts, or possibly quilt throws for covering up when chilly. I don't make anything that takes fancy stitching or anything big enough to cover a bed... although I do like quilts on beds and have several that both have made for me.

There were dozens of beautiful quilts at the show. However, I only took pics of my 2 favorites.

This dragonfly quilt was my all time favorite...  and next is a closeup of the quilting.

And this parrot quilt was just wonderful...

I consider these "Art"... not meant to be used as a throw or bed cover, but hung on a wall. Just beautiful!

So that's how I spent my Friday - enjoying the quilt show and having coffee after at Starbucks with my friend. 

I did make a fresh peach torte this week using the peaches from Ham's Peach Orchard. The variety was O'Henry and they were extremely sweet and juicy. And Central Market had their Hatch Chili Peppers on sale this week! We bought roasted Hatch Chilies, Hatch stuffed chicken breasts, Hatch crab cakes, Hatch Chili sauce, Hatch cheese, Hatch tortillas, etc. As you can see, we like them... (I do use the mild, not the hot).

And the  bell pepper from my container garden did finally turn red. I picked it when it was starting to turn - just to see if it would continue to turn when placed on my window sill. It did. And when I took it off the window to take a picture, I just stuck it on top of some cookbooks in the hall.... and got this pic.

Believe it or not... I didn't set the pepper up to look like that. After I took the pic and looked at it, I had to show it to DH... it looks like John is actually holding the pepper in his hands! How serendipitous!

I really hope that all of you out there in blogging land have been enjoying your summer.  School has already started in some places and summer is coming to an end. Before we know it Fall will be upon us. This summer seems to have passed extremely fast... maybe it's age or maybe it's been especially busy with my appendectomy, kids moving, and family visiting. All I know is that time is flying by. 

Fall is always welcome, but winter (even though we don't have it half as bad as some of you) not so much. With winter comes cold weather, icy roads, broken pipes, colds and flu. We always get our flu shots, but they aren't totally effective. Of course the thought of hot home-made casseroles and soups as well as hot chocolate by a warm cozy fire sounds good. The cats and I will hibernate by the fire-place or the Aga. At the moment the 3 of them are hibernating on our bed.

And I'm going to close with a picture of this plant that turned up out front. I'm sure it's wild... and probably a gift from the birds, but I don't know what it is. It has the soft furry leaves of lambs ear... 

What do you think?

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Favorite photos of Texas... and recent ones of Hawaii

Big Texas Sky

I had to take this picture as DH and I were driving home from the grocery this week. The sky was so pretty and the green grass and yellow hay bales just made a terrific photo.

Here are a few others of my favorite photos of Texas:




Texas Hill country 

It is HOT here in the summer... but Texas has it's own appeal!

Now... our oldest son who only recently moved to Hawaii has been sending us beautiful pictures of the area that they are in. I will share a few of them here:

 Sky, Sea, and Sand...

and from the look of this next one... contentment !

Sorry I had to use such large photos, but you really don't get the effect with smaller ones. Hope they aren't a problem on your blog.

These photos may not be of any interest to you. There are so many beautiful places in this world... but Texas has it's moments... and it's nice to be able to share. 

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Ham's peach orchard in Terrill, TX...

the train that runs by Ham's in Terrill, TX

This past Friday we made our annual visit to Ham's Peach Orchard in Terrill.  DH's brother and his wife are visiting from Houston and this is one of the places on their "must go" list.  I took several pictures so you could see why.... but the fresh home-made peach and strawberry ice-cream is the principle draw. 

They also have peach (and other fruit) pastry, pies, cakes, salsas, ciders, etc. We have a few favorite things we get each visit, but we also pick up a few things to try... and haven't been disappointed yet. 


Strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries, fresh and in jars

fresh peaches - 2 varieties

fruit ciders (I love the peach cider!)

      pastries, pies,cakes, and cobblers

fresh veggies

and  that first picture at the top is of the locomotive that runs on the tracks right in front on Ham's. We've been there when the train has stopped.. and we watched two people get off,  pick up some fresh peach ice-cream cones, and head back on out. Didn't happen this time... and don't know if it's a normal practice, but thought it was an interesting event.

And those of you that are familiar with our cats may know that Tux and Julie are black and white DSH siblings that are an integral part of our house-hold. Well, these two are particularly fond of going into our office or computer room - mainly because we keep that door closed most of the time and a closed door is just too much for their curiosity. Well, today after our company left, I came in here to work on my blog and decided to let them in while I worked. They are in hog heaven. Both have curled up on the bed in here... just as content as can be. 

Tux and Julie

And lastly, our youngest grand daughter (at 4) is a big fan of Spider-man. Well, DH's brother (who was visiting) brought her a Spider-man T-shirt and she decided that it made a great Spider-man nightie.

You can't actually see the Spider on the front... but it is there!

Hope you all have a fantastic week!  It's supposed to be in the middle 80's for the next few days here... if the weatherman is right! For August in Texas, this is pretty wonderful.