It is the small simple things of life that bring us peace.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wednesday 07.23.2014

Astrodome/NRG Stadium at twilight

Friday, July 18, 2014


That's right, whew!  I feel like a bear that's emerging from hibernation.  After a long winter of sleep she's coming out into the light, blinking, looking around, taking deep refreshing breaths and thinking oh, that's right, this is the world. A few stretches and it is time to go back into the bear routine.

I think I went somewhat underground while finishing up one of my last classes.  While I enjoyed writing the paper on genetically modified food and doing the presentation on Enron's fall, I had to focus every minute of non-work, non-sleep time on them.  No time to write posts and no time to read posts, or anything else for that matter.  I barely even glanced at the news, but I got both assignments done and got the A!  But while I focused on them I neglected other things and found myself absolutely absorbed into doing the work. 

Creative conversion of the crate into a grooming table!
I did manage to show Bentley at two local shows last weekend, with bathing and grooming occupying my thoughts briefly.  Then it was back to finishing up the presentation.  Monday night the class was over and I had to then quickly prepare for the Thursday night class and submit assignments.  I faced a busy week at work and preparing to head to Houston for more dog shows (no showing, just steward work) again filled my thoughts. 

After a bleary-eyed drive to Houston last night I was up early this a.m. and ringside at 7 a.m.  But it was a good day, especially since for the first time I was working at the ring where the long haired dachshunds were showing!  So, the bear has come out of hibernation and remembers that yes, there is a life out here.  She yawns, stretches, and lumbers off ready to find a comfortable place for a good nights sleep.  Time to resume all those other activities tomorrow.
Ready, set, show!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wednesday 07.09.2014

Art Deco
Briscoe Western Art Museum
(originally San Antonio's first Public Library and later, home to the Hertzberg Circus Collection)

Friday, July 4, 2014

Celebrating the Fourth of July

Here's what was on my grill tonight!  I've spent the day working on a paper about the ethical issues of bioengineered food and I'm fairly sure that everything (except maybe the tomato) is a product of genetic modification!

I can hear the pop pop pop of fireworks right now and know that American's are celebrating our freedoms!  I'm thankful that I'm an American and live in the land of the free and the brave!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Wednesday 07.02.2014

Detail of leather saddle, South Texas Heritage Center, Witte Museum

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Little Rainbows and Big Blooms

I'm in the final weeks of school, set to graduate in August.  Plans for more school?  Maybe, but tonight was my short class and we all bolted out the door at 8 p.m.  While I was in the building the wind had picked up sharply and the clouds had changed from light and fluffy to dark and fragmented.  As I got in the car I decided that since it was still early that it might be prudent to fill the car with gas tonight.  So I pulled into the station by my neighborhood.

As I started the pump I stood gazing across an open field, over the rooftops of houses, wondering about the weather.  The wind was still blowing strong. Then I saw it, just the end of a very light rainbow stretching from clouds to the rooftops. Usually these appear when there is rain, but these clouds were not rain clouds so I was puzzled.  It was faint, but I kept my eyes on it while watching first the small strip of yellow color dominate, then the pink and then the green.  Rainbows always remind me of God's promise to Noah and to mankind that never again would he destroy the earth. 

The normally boring, time consuming task of putting gas in the car was no longer tedious.  The exhaustion of the day seemed to disappear during those few minutes I spent peacefully watching the rainbow's color display, feeling the evening breeze on my face, and loosing myself in thought.  God's promise/God's love/so refreshing!

No, I don't have a picture of the little rainbow, but I do have this crepe myrtle to share.  Since we've had rain recently the crepe myrtle's have just exploded with color.  In all my driving around it has been fun to spot them, white, pink, purple, red showing off their colors. This one is in the front of the building where I go to school.  Last week before class I took the point and shoot camera out and walked back outside to make pictures; I'm glad I did because yesterday morning we had torrential rains and tonight there were very few blooms left.  Not to worry, I had almost 5 inches of rain in the rain gauge after the storm, so I'm sure in a few days the blooms will reappear.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wednesday, 06.25.2014

Produce (and dog treats) from the Farmers' Market at the Pearl Brewery

Friday, June 20, 2014

Summer Friday Night

Mow the yard and smell the fresh cut grass.  Light the grill and let the aroma drift all over the neighborhood.  Watch the food finish cooking in the almost darkness.  Summer night at its finest!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Wednesday 06.18.2014

footbridge, - The University of the Incarnate Word

Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Slow and Easy Way to Cook

I recently bought a second crock pot.  That sounds extravagant, but it made sense and I'm glad I did.  I originally had an avocado green crock pot (can you date it?) that was a wedding present.  It worked great and I cooked many wonderful meals in it.  When I began on my second life I bought a new crock pot, one that the crock lifted out and was easy to clean.  I've used it a lot, but it cooked way too fast, even on the low setting.  I think that had an effect on the food, too.  So my solution was to buy another crock pot.  Plus it made sense to have two so that I could use both at the same time to do a complete meal if I wanted to. When I went shopping I knew that I wanted one that would really cook on low and would turn itself onto a "warm" mode when the meal was done.  And, I got exactly what I wanted!

I made baked beans on my first use, and they were delicious! Today I put in a roast and it was perfect.  I didn't get a picture of it, since we were busy helping plates so we could commence to eating, so here is the empty pot waiting to be cleaned (yes, the crock and the top go in the dishwasher!).  I put in potatoes with the roast, made fresh green beans, coleslaw, rolls and we had some mighty fine eating! 

Following is the recipe I like to use for crock pot roast.  It is in Southern Sideboards published by the Junior League of Jackson, Mississippi.  The dear lady that submitted the recipe is Mrs. W.W. Westbrook, Jr. and I give her all the credit!

Slow and Easy Chuck Roast

3-4 pound lean boneless chuck roast, that has the fat trimmed off as much as possible
Sprinkle Cavender's Greek Seasoning, lemon pepper seasoning, and one package of onion-mushroom dry soup mix over both sides of roast and place in crock pot.  Add 1/2 cup water and cook on low for 8-10 hours.  The gravy can be thickened, if needed, with flour or cornstarch.  Serves 6.

I added potatoes on top and you could also add carrots if desired.  The chuck roast is a cheaper (budget friendly) cut of meat, but cooks up nicely.  

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Friday, June 6, 2014

70 years ago today

Early on the morning of June 6, 1944 the Allied Forces invaded the beaches of Normandy in the largest seaborne invasion in history.  Of the 150,000 soldiers, half were American.  General Eisenhower told them before their departure, "We will accept nothing less than full victory"; D-day is regarded as the turning point of World War II.

It still isn't known exactly how many soldiers gave their lives that day. The Army estimates that there were 9,000 killed or wounded; there were many who would be listed as missing in action. It would be weeks before their families knew of their loss, something that is hard to understand in our world of instant communication.  The news reels would bring the story weeks later, too. Germany would surrender on May 8, 1945.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
(Francis Scott Key, The Star Spangled Banner,1814, 4th stanza)