Monday, July 30, 2018

the fun of traveling... and the pitfalls of flying

Tea at The Peach Tree

Just back from a week in the Hill Country visiting my daughter and her family. Must start at the beginning... which was a bit shaky.

Tuesday I arrived at the airport at 2pm with a 3:20 departure schedule. 

First thing that happened was for the first time in a long time I didn’t get TSA preboarding on my boarding pass... so I needed to do all the ‘remove shoes, liquids in plastic bag, etc’. OK, I can handle that. 

Then they sent my plastic cartons containing my stuff (carry-on, purse, cell phone, etc.) down one aisle and made me and the rest of the people behind me move to another line! 

Then when I went to retrieve my cartons, my carry-on bag was missing. Well, apparently they confiscated it because the X-ray showed 2 cans (one Godiva dark chocolate pretzels and one tin of Kona coffee flavored macadamia nuts from Hawaii). I was bringing these to my daughter. So the TSA agent had to unpack my bag and check out those items (but didn't confiscate them).

Then... my flight was delayed (twice).

Finally- we boarded and were on the plane seated about 5 minutes when they came over the intercom and said that there was a maintenance problem and we needed to deplane (Great). 

Then we waited in the terminal until they took the first plane away and found us a new plane which we reboarded (of course - from a different gate)

I'm really not complaining about it all... (although it does sound like it). It's just that an hour's quick trip to San Antonio turned into a 6 hour ordeal. (not anyone's fault - just did). But I have to say that the next day I unexpectedly received an email apology from Southwest as well as a $100.00 voucher to be used at a later date. (How about that?)

Wednesday - I got to watch my grand daughter ride at an indoor arena where they're boarding one of their horses and 

Thursday - we headed out to Fredericksburg to spend the night and walk the cute little shops and restaurants there. 

me in our airbnb in Fredricksburg

Visited my favorite German kitchen store (Der Kuchen Laden) and had lunch at the Peach Tree Cafe and Tea room! Visited more shops, then back to our Airbnb to rest. Then off to the Fredericksburg Brewing Company for dinner. After dinner we headed to Old Tunnel State Park to watch the bats emerge from their cave (old railroad tunnel). The Park Ranger gave us the history of the old railroad tunnel and general information on bats while waiting for them to fly out... which they did around 8:30pm.

Friday morning - we hit Java Ranch coffee shop (really cute), walked town a bit, back to pack up and check out... then brunch at The Herb Farm - toasted faccacia bread with butter and jams, biscuits with white gravy and sausage, and English tea with cream! 

Then back home to daughter’s house (about an hour away).

daughter's house and land

Sunday - we visited the little German town of Gruene... just to walk the shops and have coffee... too hot outside to stay long. Home again to nap!

Her mama chicken and baby chick (lone survivor of rat snake that got her siblings) are very friendly. Mama jumped in my lap to get some French fries...

Pushy mama and her chick

And Moose (daughter’s new Great Dane) is a sweetheart.


That's Moose sitting on grand daughter's lap. He has a very nice profile....

Flight home was delayed also, but only once... and the rest was uneventful (thank goodness).

Cats are happy for me to be back home!

See how excited they are to see me back...

Now catching up on all the blogs I missed...

Monday, July 16, 2018

Julie hanging out...


While I was dusting the front room today, Julie was hanging out watching me. Cats are very good at watching others work. I often tell them they should be doing something constructive... but to them that only means 'playing, eating, or napping'. They are good at those things... and at 'comforting'.

The little Siamese feral kittens (and their black sibling) are growing up... but still nursing their mama. They are very playful and I would like to get them friendly to people, but their mama has taught them well. As soon as that door opens, they scatter.

Mama and her 3 kits

another view

The kittens are growing up... but still nursing. She's a fantastic mom... watches them like a hawk. We saw her hiss and chase off one of the raccoon babies that was getting too close to a kitten. I think it just wanted to play... but mama said 'no way'.

DH and I had a fun 2 weeks of birthdays... (his is 9 days after mine).  Oldest son and his family flew in from Hawaii and we had a nice family gathering on Sunday. I made a ton of food as I wasn't sure how many would be at the house... but we almost finished most of it. 

Unfortunately the weather has been really hot. Supposed to hit 104 - 105 F later this week. And the 'haze' due to the Sahara sand blowing in doesn't help. 

I may be 'out of pocket' this next week, but will try to catch up ASAP.  

Have a great week! And try to keep 'cool'....

Friday, July 6, 2018

Find Elmo... no, find the feline in the pic!

Find Elmo! No... Find the feline in the tree!

I've always liked this picture. Thought I would share it with you. There's a feral cat up in that tree. Can you find it?

I also wanted to share a video of the little feral Siamese looking kittens in our yard. But I'm not sure how to upload it. Going to try...
So far, no luck.

So here is a pic of 2 of my daughter's 3 dogs. Moose is the Great Dane on the left and Willow is a rescued lab mix on the right. Willow is up in age, Moose is 3.

DH and I had dinner with some old friends this week. The guys grilled outside while my friend and I sat with our feet in the pool and talked. As hot as its been around here, it really wasn't too bad that evening. They have lots of trees around their pool and there was a breeze.  Later we had dessert and coffee inside... and talked some more.  It was great fun spending time with them. DH and I are not very social... meaning we don't do a lot of socializing - parties, clubs, travel, etc. So when we do get together with old friends, it means a lot.

And another dear friend took me out to lunch for my birthday yesterday. We went to Whiskey Cake... and it was really fun. I tried to put some pictures here, but it didn't work, but you can google Whiskey Cake Kitchen and Bar and see pictures. It is an interesting place. Everything they use there is fresh and local.  She and I split a bacon cheeseburger with home-made chips and a side order of fried green tomatoes with a dipping sauce. It was fabulous. Also we had coffee and split a whiskey cake that is covered with some sort of whiskey caramel sauce... with a cup of freshly whipped heavy cream on the side. Delicious!

I guess this is my post for the day. Reading a good book by Rhys Bowen. Think I'll go and make myself a cup of tea and pick up where I left off last night. 

Have a great weekend!

Monday, July 2, 2018

a hot weekend in Texas...

Timber Rattlesnake

My friend who lives out in Anna, TX (about 45 mins. from Dallas) caught this Timber Rattlesnake in a trap a few days ago. They were trying to catch a possum or raccoon that was after their chickens, but caught this instead. She emailed me the picture and her husband called my son who is the Curator of the Herpetology Dept. at the Dallas Zoo.  He drove to her place and picked it up. 

Mama raccoon and her 2 kits in our backyard 

This mama raccoon brought her 2 babies to our backyard this past week.  The 3 feral kittens were fascinated with the raccoon kits.

And there's no getting around it... it's HOT! We hit triple digits this week and are continuing to go there. There is some news that perhaps we will have rain on the 4th which will lower the temp just a bit. The feral cats have been laying under the fan on the back porch and we make sure that there's plenty of water out there.

I think the comments notification is fixed... or at least partially. Some come to my email now... and some don't.  But I guess some is better than none. 

And I'm posting a pic of a mug I threw using a new glaze (new for me). I like the way it looks on Spectacular clay (which is a red speckled clay). Trying it this week on T-mix (which is white). 

Blue Rutile glaze on Spectacular clay

This is the only pottery pic I will post here. I think the glaze is interesting, but those of you that would like to see more can click on my pottery blog (and if you do, please leave a comment so I'll know if that blog notification needs fixing too). I have more 'chickens in progress' pics posted there. Pottery blog is at top right under text: New Blog!

And I hope to post again for the 4th! But if not, know that I wish you all a Happy Safe 4th of July ! (and since my birthday is on the 6th... I'm happy to have made it to another year!!

As always, thanks for reading...