Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Missing My Muse

There is a part of me that would love to blame my lack of posting on the disappearance of my Muse, or maybe I could explain it as my Muse left when my husband retired and she felt her services were no longer needed among the talk and laughter and coffee drinking that goes on in a house with a happy retired couple. There may be some truth to that, my life has gotten crowded, not a bad thing, I just don't have much time for thinking...

My bowl painting has continued. 

One of the bowls I designed and painted for the
Tarrant Area Food Bank
on display at the Empty Bowls Event 2014.
More bowls from the 2014 Empty Bowls Event.  The green
bowl at the top and the striped bowls are "my" dog dishes. 
And I am still painting in the house. 

Will this madness ever end?  You make one little change,
which leads to another little change, then another, and...
I enjoy visiting with my family and friends. I get a little crazy when they tell me they follow my blog - they know what I'm doing and I have no clue what's going on in their life - they read my blog... They are too busy to tell me what they are up to.  I'm not too bitter. 

I'm still reading blogs - o.k., some days I'm so busy I just look at the pictures... Just wanted to say a word of thanks to all you clever bloggers out there. Thanks! ... And if you should spot my Muse somewhere out in this great, big world, maybe you could tell her she's welcome to come home anytime.


Friday, September 12, 2014

Well, that didn't take long...

Our kitchen remodel is almost complete. In an old house like ours, once you make a change it inspires you to make another change, and another...

Coffee and a bit of whipped cream.

Once we got the counter top in I decided the wallpaper would have to be changed - - - Mr. J&C suggested that it be eliminated.  I begged him to let us get rid of the old wainscoting that screamed 1966. Stalemate.

A day or two later our neighbor, Terry, walked in and asked when were we getting rid of the old, ugly paneling and when I told him how right he was and wouldn't the room look better with when I got it all wallpapered, he looked at me like I was nuts and announced that wallpaper went out in the 1950s. After he left, we picked ourselves up, decided to go for broke, and ripped out the paneling and the wallpaper. Sigh. Sounds quick and easy. We were lucky that there was sheetrock, this was the summer we got to learn about "mud" and "tape and bedding." Then we had to put texture on the wall - I would redo that in a heart beat, and probably should, but for now it will do.

Almost done...
If it's Friday, the plumber is scheduled to come back and properly attach the dishwasher to the countertop. Also, we have wood trim to put up around the floor and the windows and the door - - - did I mention we took out a door, jamb and all, and now I've got to go to the lumber yard to get trim and ...

Someday this will be done. During our two months of construction we've had house guests, friends over for drinks, and friends over to play Mahjong (I'm learning a new game!).  Life has not been all play and no work or all work and no play. The dust has not yet settled but we think we are going to like our new old kitchen.


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Waiting, Working, Waiting

Our kitchen remodel continues, happily so does our marriage.  We are both ready to get this done.  Not in a sad way, an "Oh this is terrible, I wish I was through with it!" way.  But in a happy "I can't wait to see what we've created!" way.  Still, I don't care for the waiting part of this redo...

Right this minute I would like to be playing with or reading to my grand daughter...

Or playing (hiding) in the garden like Rodney...

Not now, not today, there's work to be done...

Moving furniture to make room for the coming destruction and reconstruction of the kitchen...

Waiting with all our new cabinets...

that are still in the boxes... waiting for Tuesday... and it is Thursday.


Wednesday, June 11, 2014


The winner of my book give away is:

a fun blog about life in Texas and Colorado. 

On this fine day I've got lots to do.  The new hot water heater failed the city inspection so we will wait for the plumbers to return and make things all better. We can take hot showers so life is still good, it just the whole pass/fail thing.  *Sigh*

In Kitchen Remodel News:  We have learned that we can't take down the wall between the kitchen and the family room, still we will carry on, somehow.  *Sob* I would love to open up all the space, take down this wall that blocks my view -- but since this particular wall is holding up my house and it would cost more than I care to spend -- the wall stays.  *Sigh*

Mr. J&C has reminded me (more than once) we don't want to put a $1,000 radio in a $300 car.  That balance of old and new is a bit tricky but I think we can make it work.

Right now, I'm going to finish my coffee and then I'm going outside for a walk.  It's a beautiful day in my corner of the world, whether there are ants...

or flowers in the sidewalk, life is good. 

Tomorrow, I'll deal with the plumbers and sweep the sidewalk.


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Book Club Adventure

As I type this I am humming the Sesame Street song, "One of These Things Doesn't Belong Here..."  Can you guess which picture was not taken at my house? 

The past two weeks in my garden...

That's right - The Butterfly.  In March, my book club read Flight Pattern by Barbara Kingsolver and we had our meeting during the first week in April at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden - lunch and a tour of the butterfly exhibit. We visited just before the Asian butterflies left town.  A good time was had by all.

This exhibit was amazing.
The butterflies were beautiful.  I wasn't allowed to touch them or bring one home with me. It's just as well, we are getting really serious about our kitchen redo. So serious that I am trying to make room in the house for all the kitchen stuff that has to be moved during the remodel.  No room for the odd butterfly or two and, to show my husband I can "get rid of things," I am giving away my copy of our March book.

If you would like to own Flight Pattern it just so happens I have a copy that I would love to send it to you. Just let me know in the comment section and I'll put all the names in mixing bowl and let Mr. J&C do the honors. 

The winner will be chosen the next time I post a blog or next Wednesday - which ever comes first.  Chances of winning are if-y to a sure thing depending on how many / if anyone comments and if I can find a mixing bowl.  I'll contact the winner to get your mailing address and send it to you - yes, I'll even send it to far away places like Dallas or New Zealand...

I made these photo collages using iPiccy - the version I use is free and it has been updated to include ready made sizes like Facebook Cover and Twitter Picture. I used iPiccy to create my header and that's also how I 'signed' the pictures in this post...

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What Day Is It?

Spring is busting out all over here in Fort Worth.  Lots of buds and blooms and grass growing and leaves sprouting and, well, here's something I don't see every day.

Spring - time for a young lizard to look for love


maybe just a place in the sun.
Happy Wednesday!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Perfectly Good Home

I am enjoying the benefits of grand motherhood. Once a week I travel 30 miles to the west to visit the most beautiful and intelligent baby in the world. Sigh. Life is good.

Sometimes you have to look around to find a place to call home.

For a few weeks Mr. J&C and I toyed with the idea of moving to the other side of town. It was a good time to look around and see what is out there because after a year of retirement we want to make a few changes in our home (the kitchen). Why put the money into this house when there might be a perfect house just down the road?

Sometimes all it takes to make a place your home is adding a few touches of your own.

There is no perfect house. 

I really hate that. 

On the other hand, getting out and looking at a few houses has given me new appreciation for what I've got. So this weekend I will happily weed in my garden in the morning and in the afternoon I'll continue to look for clever ideas and inspiration for our kitchen remodel.

Sometimes we realize our house has become our home because of who shares it with us.

We are keeping the same 'footprint' just changing the wallpaper, moving the fridge, changing out the cabinets, getting a new sink, knocking out a wall between the kitchen and family room... Shouldn't be too hard, right? 


Thursday, February 27, 2014

That's What Friends Are For

My friends and neighbors are in estate sales. I know that their job is lots of hard work and dust and grease and tears (parting with worldly possessions can be heart breaking. Or the classic "will Momma know I loved her if I get rid of these three chipped water goblets that I'm sure she and Daddy got for a wedding present in 1937?"). They are able to sort, clean, deal with the clients and shoppers, and make money for their clients and themselves. This week they let me come visit them early and see what they had to sale.

Mr. J&C and I went over Tuesday morning and 'found' a breakfast room table, it's perfect and it was the right price. So, naturally, I asked if I could come back again with a friend of mine, known for her clever decorating, quilting, and the ability to spot treasures almost anywhere - the Colorado Lady.

Many thanks to whoever made these wonderful items.

Suzanne came away with all kinds of things (check out her Thursday post Vintage Thingy Thursday).  I got a quilt and a few baskets... a couple of embroidered table runners... and a child's apron... did I mention my quilt?

My new picnic quilt.

Thing is, I would have had fun even if I had not found this lovely blue quilt all because a friend was with me. I hope you have people in your life who help you through the tough times, cry with you, laugh with you, eat & drink with you, and, of course, shop with you.  That's what friends are for...


Sunday, February 9, 2014

New Life, New Love

I have fallen in love with someone new.
Dark hair, blue eyes.
She's gorgeous!

Makenzie, less than 2 hours old, wearing
traditional newborn hospital ensemble.

I am a grandmother. 
I think I'm going to like this adventure. 
I want to spend more time with her but I'm
smart enough to wait until I'm invited -
I believe her parents get to be Number One
in her life right now.  I keep reminding 
my daughter "I'm here whenever you need me!" 
I'm always looking forward to our next visit. 
I've even contemplated moving to her side of town...

This was taken the night Makenzie was born, the first time
I got to hold her, and it was love at first sight.
(This watercolor picture was made possible by a handy
little iPhone app called Waterlogue,  I learned about
 it from a post by Rosemary at Content in a Cottage.)

This could be the beginning
of a beautiful friendship.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Comfort and Joy

For the past 365 days Mr. J&C and I have explored the brave new world of retirement. This year has been a period of adjustment for us.  Learning we don't have to live by the clock.  Making a list of fun things to do and actually having the time to do (some of) them. We are also finding new things to do to keep our brains young happily middle aged. There has been lots of togetherness, so much that some days we just make time to be away from each other.  Still, my favorite way to start the morning and end the day is with him.

A perfect gift from my mom.
Mr. J&C still belongs to his professional society which meets once a month. He has also joined a group of retirees (many of whom he worked with) and they meet once a month. He's slowly getting back into golf (very slowly, he hurt his elbow weeding in the flower beds - I told him gardening was tough). He goes to lunch every now and then with his friends. He likes the outdoors and hunting (visiting with family and friends). He's taken 3 different BBQ classes and (I'm happy to report) his cooking gets better and better.

I still visit with my girlfriends (we call it shopping - it's really more talking and having lunch and talking with a little shopping thrown in). Took a pottery class in October.  And (this is big) I've joined a book club - it's a delight, one of my smartest moves in years. We meet once a month, taking turns to be hostess and choose the book and, if we're lucky, our hostess will theme her lunch menu around the book. The month we read The Great Gatsby our hostess welcomed us into a 1920's cocktail party. I'm planning on doing future posts to describe the books we've read and the meals we've shared. This group of eight women is amazing and the books they have me reading (no pictures! I'm talking serious reading here!) have been entertaining.

I guess the point of my post today is to let the world know we are surviving, even thriving, in retirement. Still learning about each other and the world around us.  Always on the lookout for our next adventure.

Happy New Year!