Tuesday, February 23, 2016

February 23, 2016

A Very Nice Tuesday
February 23, 2016

Another photo from Saturday at the island.

This was another very good day.  I was up earlier than I had been in recent weeks.  After getting my breakfast, I got my shower and prepared to go to the office, and arrived at a good time.  Ron said he had been very busy yesterday after I left and I think he was a little busy this morning before I arrived. 

I spent the morning on business paper work.  I helped with customers when Ron got busy.  He went out on some errands and a job and it was quiet most of the time he was gone.  Our schedule this week will be different due to Charro Days.  The three Charro Days' parades form at our corner with bands and walking units along with some floats, coming out of the stadium, and down our side street.  Meanwhile most floats line up on both sides of the street in front of the office.  Then the parade is put together at the corner.  We can't get in and out and neither can our customers.  We have found it easiest to just close for those three days.  So that is our plan.

Late in the afternoon I started paying some bills, but didn't finish so I will need to take care of that in the morning.  When we closed, we went to meet our friends for supper.  We are avoiding Charro Days.  We had a good supper together.  I used the Cochlear Mini Mic and it did work pretty well. 

We got home about 7:00 and I must say, the traffic is crazy!  I saw two near accidents on the way home.  Both times people were changing lanes without looking and nearly ran into another car.  The week of Charro Days just seems to bring out that type of behavior; people hurrying to parties, and events, and having trouble finding parking places.  I was glad to be in my little house all safe and sound.
Black-necked Stilt
Speaking of sound, did any of you read the article in the paper a day or two ago about the astronauts hearing music while they were on the back side of the moon on Apollo 10, 40 years ago?  They kept it secret for 40 years.  I don't know why, but it made me wonder if it was anything like the music in my head since they were out of communication with NASA at the time and things were quiet.  They could communicate with each other and they talked about if they should tell NASA or not.  I just found it interesting.
 Little blue Heron

Monday, February 22, 2016

February 22, 2016

Hello, Monday!  
You Sure Got Here Fast!
February 22, 2016

Another miniature rose I picked this morning

For being a Monday morning, I was up early and actually got to the office at least an hour earlier than I have been lately.  I had a good day, and accomplished a lot of things.  I worked on boxing up more papers from last year and actually saw the surface of my desk for the first time in two or three weeks.  Not all of the desk, but the area where I normally work, is now clear.

When I arrived at the office, Ron said I had just missed my sister and her husband as they were out taking a long morning walk (over 3 miles).  Sorry I missed them.

Ron was busy during the morning so I had to help often with customers.  They kept us both busy for a while.  After I had lunch, Ron left on some errands and a couple of jobs.  I had expected him to be out the rest of the day, but it was not too long until he was back.  One of the jobs, the people did not show up so he could do the job.

After Ron got back, he said he would be in the office the rest of the day, so I could leave.  I went to Wal-Mart to get some groceries and came home and fixed meatloaf and potatoes for supper.  I ate and Ron still had not shown up when I finished.  Some friends stopped by for a while.  Then I spent most of the evening reading, after starting the dishwasher.

Our youngest son called and I was able to use the Cochlear Wireless Phone Clip.  We had a good conversation with less requests for him to repeat things, than usual.  That phone clip makes a big difference. 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

February 21, 2016

A Sick Hubby
February 21, 2016

This was the face that greeted me this morning in the backyard.  
Such a beautiful bird.  A Great Egret.
Ron had not been feeling well for several days.  Then he was sick all last night, so he made it to class to teach this morning, but I brought him home after Sunday School.  We had a good group for class, 25, and he brought a very good lesson.

Before we went to church I spent about 30 minutes in the yard watering some plants and filling a couple of bird baths.  Several birds were around the yard out by the water, or swimming past.  There was a Great Egret, a Green Heron, a Cormorant, a family or Moor Hens, and some Grebes, but I didn't get to see what kind they were. 

Once we got home from the church, it was not too long before Ron was sleeping.  I had a little lunch and after reading a bit, I went to sleep for about 3 hours.  When I woke up I had a snack, cleaned the kitchen and then read again for a while.

When Ron woke up he went by his mom's house for a couple of things.  I did a little cleaning while he was gone and then spent time during the evening working on the flip-flop quilt in progress.  I have almost finished quilting it on my sewing machine.  It is not perfect, but it will be fine.

I had tried to make arrangements today to take our oldest two granddaughters to the quilt show, but their mom already had plans to take the girls to a ballet this afternoon.  

Saturday, February 20, 2016

February 20, 2016

Wonderful Saturday!
February 20, 2016

White Ibis with black wing tips, and Roseate Spoonbill
This was a delightful day and one I think I really needed.  I got up about 8:00 and made blueberry muffins for breakfast.  Ron was getting ready to leave to finish the job he worked on until late yesterday.  After I cleaned the kitchen, I got ready and about 10:00 drove to South Padre Island to attend the Rio Grande Valley Quilt Show at the convention center on the island.
Background: Black necked Stilts; foreground: White Ibis, Little Blue 
Heron, White morph of Reddish Egret, and Roseate Spoonbill.
There were lots of vendors at the show and many I had not heard of before.  I did some buying, a lot of looking and talked to a lot of the vendors.  It seems that more and more quilt supply vendors are turning to selling on line because running a shop is too expensive.  Since we run a business, I fully understand that problem.  One lady has a warehouse in McAllen and you can call for an appointment and she will meet you there.  She prefers that you gather some friends to come along.  She sells online.  Several told me that they only sell at shows and online.  The way of the future?  I do like to touch the fabric before I buy it.
Laughing Gulls taking flight with Black-necked Stilts in the background
While at the quilt show, I ran into most of the ladies from our Tuesday night group.  They were all having a good time looking at the display quilts and at the items available at the vendor booths.  When you bought your ticket at the door, one portion went into a drawing and you were to go check later to see if you had won a door prize.  I won one!  It was a package with two books in it.  One was thin and paper back and the other was a great hard back scrap quilt pattern book.
Common Moor Hen
It was probably about 1:30 before I left the convention center and I went to a Pizza Hut and had a quiet lunch.  The waiter was overly helpful.  He kept coming by the table about every 4 minutes to see if I needed anything.  Eventually I asked for a refill of my drink and when he brought it he had refilled it with the wrong soda.  Then, he quit stopping by (when I needed him to stop by).  When he finally did stop by, I asked for the bill and told him he had gotten the soda wrong, so he fixed me a correct one in a take out cup and did not charge me for my drink with the meal as an apology.  He got a nice tip.
Black-necked Stilt
It was getting too late to go to the birding center.  I would only have had about an hour and did not want to pay the price for such a short visit, so I returned to the convention center and took the boardwalk in that area.  There was a great cluster of various birds not too far from the boardwalk and I was able to get some photos.
Setting for the Winter Texan Banquet this evening
Around 4:00 I headed back to town.  Ron was getting cleaned up to go to the Winter Texan Banquet at the church.  For several years I had headed up that project, but the hearing limitations made it too hard for me to do that any longer.  I am so thankful that the church staff has taken over that project.  They are doing a good job and they are getting more people involved in helping than I was able to do.
After I got ready we went to the church for the banquet.  It was a mystery dinner and the setting was a wedding with the reception.  My hearing prevented me from being able to follow the story line, but I did enjoy the decorations and the food was fit for a wedding reception complete with wedding cake.  Mom and my sister were there and were at our table as was Ron's sister and two other ladies.  We helped cleanup after the event was over.
View across the gym
It has been a long day, but a very good one.  I always feel that a trip to the island allows the salt air to blow the cobwebs out of my brain.  It was very windy when I arrived, but the winds had died down by mid afternoon.
Heather taking part in the mystery play
At the banquet, I tried using my Cochlear mini mic, but again it cut in and out and then just totally went out.  I need to time how long the battery lasts.  I think it is far too short.  While it was working, it was great.
 The wedding couple in the play

Friday, February 19, 2016

February 19, 2016

Friday Was a Nice Day
February 19, 2016

This morning I picked a couple more miniature roses
This morning, I was up just before time for Ron to wake me.  I had breakfast and then got my shower and got dressed.  I was to pick my sister up at the airport at 10:55.  I noticed I had a text message telling me her flight had been delayed; that left some time for reading.  Soon I was asleep.  Oops!  I woke up at 10:55 and her flight was due in at 11:15 after the delay.  When I arrived at the airport, she was waiting on the sidewalk.

We all see the cartoons about old folks sitting around talking about their ailments.  My sister and I have become those cartoons.  She is 10 years younger than I am, but we have some similar ailments like thyroid problems (although our thyroid problems are not the same), etc., so on the way to Mom's we discussed reactions to medications.  We both agree that sometimes the reactions can be worse than the problem.  We are thankful that medications can often help, but sure wish they didn't cause other things to deal with.

Mom was waiting for my sister's arrival, and I just dropped her off and went to the office.  I took care of some bookkeeping chores and then Ron left on a job for the rest of the day.  I spent some time reading during the afternoon.  We have commented before that Friday afternoons are our slowest time normally.  It was true today. 

After I locked up at the office, I met Mom and my sister for supper.  We had a good time and missed Ron, but he was still working on his job.  At supper I used the Cochlear Mini Mic and it worked fine, allowing me to hear Mom clearly.

Following supper, I went to Kohl's and shopped for a little while before coming home.  Shortly after I got home, Ron arrived.  He had not been feeling good and had a little supper and went to sleep.  I am trying to decide what to do tomorrow.  I was hoping to go to the island for some bird photos, but late this afternoon it got real cloudy, so I am not sure what the weather is doing.  There is also a quilt show at the island that it would be nice to see.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

February 17 & 18, 2016

Two Similar Days
February 17 & 18, 2016

Miniature pink rose
Both Wednesday and Thursday, I didn't make it to work until almost 11:00.  I just get later and later.  The boss still won't fire me!  Today Ron woke me at 8:15, I turned over and went back to sleep until 9:00.  Yesterday I spent some time in the yard before going to the office, but not today.  I also spent some time in the yard yesterday after I got home. 

We were not real busy either day, but Ron had some desk work to keep him busy.  I paid bills yesterday and took care of some of the paperwork for the day.  I prepared a deposit and took it to the bank yesterday afternoon.

Late in the morning, I went by to talk to my mom.  I had seen online, that a good friend of ours had passed away and although we all knew it was coming, it was sad.  I went to be sure Mom had seen the news; she had not.  We talked a little about the man and his family and we knew the last few months had been very hard for him.  He loved the Lord and took time to tell others how they could know for sure they were going to Heaven when they died.  Gary Adams will be missed.

Back at the office, I had enough to keep me busy.  I went through a stack of flyers and sale catalogs and got rid of a bunch.  Those things stack up so quickly.  Today I packed a couple of boxes to mail out and left the office a little early to get them to the post office.

Last night Ron stayed late working on taxes and I came home, fixed supper and then worked in the yard while it cooked.  Tonight we met friends for supper. 

Tuesday night I had spent time working on machine quilting that Flip-Flop quilt and have spent some time each of the last two days doing a little more on it.  It is coming along nicely and I am glad it is almost finished.  Sadly, it has been 8 to 10 years since I started it.
The ivy is taking over!
Tonight at supper I tried the Cochlear mini mic but again it cut in and out some.  I may need to write to the company and see what to do.

There is a story about that rose at the top and bottom of the page.  I had picked it a couple of days ago and 4 or 5 petals were open, but the rest of it was a very tight bud that looked like it was not going to open.  I decided I had nothing to lose, so I peeled off the next layer of petals and over the next 30 minutes, the rose opened into a beautiful, full bloom.  I wished I had a camera to take timed photos while it opened.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

February 16, 2016

A Day Off!
February 16, 2016

A foggy morning

Since my car was still with the mechanic, last night my husband asked me if I wanted to go to work early and take him to work, or did I want to drive him to work and take the day off?  Decisions, decisions!  After a bit, I told him if he was serious, I wanted the day off.  He said he was serious.

Ron woke me this morning and eventually I managed to drag myself out of bed after a bad night of tossing and turning with acid reflux.  I had fallen asleep in the recliner and woke at 2:00 a.m. and tried the bed, but in about 10 minutes I was back in the recliner.  Taking him to work was a foggy challenge.  I understand the fog was much thicker in some parts of town, but thick enough in our part to mean you really had to pay attention driving.

After taking Ron to work, I went by Walgreen's to get milk, ice, and bread.  Once I got home I spent a while in the back yard filling ponds and birdbaths.  The feeders were still full from the previous day.  I wanted to try getting some photos of spider webs with the dew on them from the fog.  I got a few, but nothing spectacular.

After taking a few more photos, I returned to the house and spent time in the sewing room reading and cleaning.  Then I started working on the cleaning in the dining room.  The kitchen was the last room I tackled today.  I did some laundry and again sorted through some of the unfinished quilt projects to see where I was in the process.  I have several ready for the quilter, but they are currently working on some other quilts that will be given away.

While in the sewing room, I enjoyed watching the few birds that were out and about today.  I spotted one in a tree in the neighbor's yard and could tell she was one I was not familiar with by her jumping and short flying characteristics.  Eventually, she landed in a tree by the window I was using and I was able to get several shots of what turned out to be a female Yellow-rumped Warbler.
Yellow-rumped Warbler
I had a very late lunch so I did not have supper until after the quilt group left later in the evening.  We had a good time at quilting.  There were five besides myself and it was just a relaxing evening.  I worked on machine quilting a small quilt I started about 10 years ago.  I continue to try to finish some of those forgotten projects.

My car was returned to Ron during the day and they said nothing is wrong.  I hope they are right.  We will see how it does over the next few days.

Sunday when Ron and I went to the Sprint Store to have them work on our phones, apparently they lost the programming my son had done to make my Cochlear wireless mini mic and phone clip work.  I will need to reprogram them and it will take a little time.  I miss them.
Current quilting project.  
I am doing the machine quilting on this on my sewing machine.

February 15, 2016

Hello, Monday!
February 15, 2016

This Monday was a little different than most.  I woke up before my alarm went off.  Got the sheets changed on one bed and stripped from another one, folded a couple of loads of laundry and put another load in the washer and started it.

Ron wanted to take my car in to see about the fuel pump, so about 7:45 we left and I followed him to the repair place.  He left my car at the repair shop, and I took him to work before I returned home for a while.  Once I got home, I moved the laundry to the dryer and went to work in the yard for about an hour.  I hauled all the stuff I cut yesterday and all the palm fronds that have blown down lately from the high winds.  I took them to the back of the yard and threw them over the fence to the brush pile that should be picked up in the next few days.

Then it was time for a shower and while my hair dried I put away some clean dishes in the kitchen and ate a little breakfast.  It was getting close to 11:00 before I got to the office so I made a side trip and picked up some tamales for lunch.  The lady just had the first batch ready and Ron and I ate some of them when I got to the office.  They were so good!

I finally got all the things ready for the accountant and they will go out in tomorrow's mail.  I worked on a few other chores at my desk, but it was very slow at the office.  A large percentage of our customers are banks and government offices and with today being a legal holiday, it was very slow at work.  I read for a while and then went to the drug store.  They had been calling that some prescription was ready.  When I got there, they said none were there.  After I got back they called to say it was time to renew some of them.

Ron and I were riding together since my car was still at the mechanic's place, so we left the shop together and ate a quick small supper at Chick-fil-A on the way home.  The mechanic had called to say he could not find a problem with the car.  Ron asked him to drive it and take it home this evening to see if the problem showed up.  He will probably bring it back tomorrow afternoon either way. 

These days I don't have a housekeeper and I may just stay home tomorrow and clean and sew.  It is hard for me to stay caught up on the cleaning.  We will see what works, but I may take a day off every other week and catch up - may have to be each week, but I don't think so.

Monday, February 15, 2016

February 14, 2016

It's Valentine's Day
February 14, 2016

 White Ibises

It seems a long time since Valentine's Day fell on a Sunday.  I liked it. For Valentine's Day Ron had a nice ring for me with my birthstone. At church the pastor preached on faithful love in marriage.  In Sunday School one of the ladies passed out chocolate heart candies to everyone.  In class we had a good crowd and a good lesson.

When I went to get Mom between Sunday School and Worship service, I spotted these 10 white ibises (at the top of the page) wandering through her neighborhood.  She had seen me pull over at the end of her street and thought I was having car trouble.  No, just photographing the birds.

During the worship service one of the staff members and his wife shared of their recent visit to see their son and his family on the other side of the world serving the Lord in a country with few Christians.  It was good to hear a report of their trip and the work being done there.

After church, Ron and I went to the Sprint store.  Both of us had been having problems with our phones and the young lady there quickly solved our problems.  Then we picked up some lunch and came home for a relaxed visit over lunch.
Pretty little rose from my rose flowerbed. 
Ron slept the afternoon away while I worked in the backyard for a couple of hours watering, raking leaves, and cutting back a couple of bushes right by the back door.  It was very windy, so I did not try to carry all of the palm fronds and cuttings to the brush pile, but did take the leaves to the pile.  I picked the one rose bud that seemed about ready to open.

After I came in it was time for a bath.  I then read for a while and did a little cleaning in the sewing room.  I baked over 12 dozen cookies to send to some special people.  I did a little laundry and went to sleep a little early after talking to our son in New Mexico.

Sunset after a long busy day.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

February 13, 2016

Celebrations Continue
February 13, 2016

We were all invited to our son's home in McAllen for supper.  Ron and I had planned to go early in the morning since he would be pulling a pop-up tent trailer.  I got up about 6:00 and started working on Mom's quilt again.  Ron was working on the lights on the trailer and on getting it hooked up to my SUV.  We left late in the morning and about 1/3 of the way there, we started having car trouble.  Ron finally decided it was the fuel pump going out.

The fuel pump problem meant we had to drive between 30 and 40 mph the rest of the way, making it a much longer trip than anticipated.  Ron turned off the A/C to reduce strain on the car and thankfully the day was in the 70s.  By the time we finally arrived, it was starting to get hot.

Ron and Jeff set up the trailer while Barb, the three girls and I went birthday shopping.  We saw lots of pretty things, but didn't spend too much.  I had given the grandchildren Valentine money and the girls were eager to use theirs to buy gifts for other people.  They selected cookie cutters for me: a ballerina from the youngest of the girls and a humming bird and a large butterfly from the other two.

I saw a cute little quilted bird and Barb picked up three of them for me.  I know I will enjoy them for years to come in the spring decorations around the house.  They are so whimsical.

Back at the house, Mom and my brother and his wife had arrived.  Barb stuck supper in the oven, while the kids played out in the trailer.  One of the younger boys had taken it upon himself to fix lunch for the guys while we were gone and had made them all peanut butter and jelly sandwiches which they ate in the trailer.

It seemed like everyone helped get supper ready.

The 5 younger kids decided they would eat supper out in the trailer, so the rest of us had the dining room to ourselves.  Just before supper, I gave Mom her gift.  She was delighted.  I know she will use it for keeping warm.  She tends to get chilled easily.  She loved wrapping up in it.

It is always a treat to spend time with family.  I went to the kitchen after we ate and did dishes.  The dining room was still noisy and I could not pull out individual conversations.  So in the kitchen I was able to spend some time with some of the grandchildren and they were in  and out getting food and helping with the dishes.  They were all having a wonderful time.
Mom with Jeff's children
After a great supper and dessert, we all headed home.  My brother and his wife were returning to Corpus and since we were not pulling the trailer, we were able to make better time coming home.  The car will still go to the repair place Monday.

On the way home I was able to use the Cochlear wireless phone clip and have a good conversation with our son in San Antonio.  We took Mom home and then Ron and I came home.  We were tired, but it had been a very nice day.  Our son was spending the night in the camper trailer with the younger children.  They were so excited.

February 12, 2016

Mom's Birthday
February 12, 2016

This photo was actually taken on Saturday,
 when Mom was opening my gift to her.

Mom turned 93!  We are so blessed that she is in such good health.  She has finally recovered for the back injury from a year and a half ago.  At the time one of the doctors had told her it could take 2 years and she was so discouraged.  It has taken a long time and there are still minor problems from it, so maybe he was right about the 2 years.

I went to the office and again spent the day on paperwork.  I am so eager to get caught up.  It is just a never ending cycle of keeping up on the papers.  There were a lot of customers in during the day and we both kept busy helping them.  Ron went out on a couple of jobs.

For lunch I had the leftovers from supper the evening before.  In my spare time I worked some on Mom's quilt.  My brother and sister-in-law were in town and going out to supper with Mom.  I was not feeling great, so Ron and I didn't go.  I was asleep very soon after I got home.  Then I woke at 2:00 and couldn't get to sleep until 3:00. 

February 11, 2016

Happy Birthday to Me!
February 11, 2016

 Yes, I turned 70 this week!
What a nice birthday I had.  There were no marching bands or fireworks, but there were several cards from friends far and wide and phone calls from our sons.  Ron had told me I could stay home, except for during the lunch hour.  He was going to be tied up then, so he left me sleeping.  When I got up there was a gift bag on the dining table with some jewelry in it for me for my birthday.  

I spent a little time in the yard and had a relaxing morning before going to the office.  It was good to be able to take my time before going to work.

I ended up spending 3 hours at the office doing assorted bookkeeping chores and preparing a bank deposit, then taking it to the bank before returning home.  At home I was working on the binding on the quilt for Mom's birthday.

I picked Mom up a little after 5:00 for supper at Jason's to celebrate my birthday.  We do get in a rut about where we go out to eat, but I need a place that is rather quiet and the choices for that are very limited these days. 

Restaurants seem to see how much noise they can create.  The floors are concrete, the walls are often metal, the ceilings are high and rustic.  They have televisions on playing sports or news, often the kitchen is open to the eating area so that all those noises carry.  I miss affordable,  quiet restaurants.  I am finding that fast food places are often quieter than restaurants.

We had a nice visit at supper and it was rather quiet and then some people came in and set up for a birthday party next to us and were moving furniture, decorating for about 20 people and talking loudly.  I took Mom home and returned home to work on the binding for her quilt. 

The quilt was a surprise for her.  I had bought the fabric last summer and when she saw it she fell in love with it as I had.  She said it would be great as a whole cloth piece, not cut up into pieces.  I knew how much she loved it, so I set it aside to make for her.

It was a good day.  I can't believe I am 70.  I think I feel the way I expected to feel at 50.  Yes, there are some joints that ache a little but all in all, I don't feel like I had assumed a 70 year old would feel.  Does that make sense?  Ron and I thank God often for our good health.  Yes, we have a variety of problems, but they don't slow us down too much.  We see people younger than us who are really suffering.  We are thankful for our health.

Some of the wonderful cards I received.  
I appreciate each one of them.