Friday, July 31, 2009

Peachy Keen

Tonight, I fully planned to begin the official grieving period for summer. Because, I only have one week left. One week. And, I totally wasted this week. Wasted. With a capital W.

But, next week is just that, next week. And, it is a new week. However, it is also a full week. As in full of workshops, eye doctor appointments and hair appointments. Oh, and a last trip to Florida over the weekend ... Torrey will be spending 10 days with the grandparentals.

So, I sat down to blog and to write what was sure to be a post about feeling sorry for myself ... yada yada yada. And, then I brewed myself a cup of this ...
Green Mountain's summer special edition ... The Perfect Peach. And, it truly is just that ... PERFECT! It is yummy. It is delicious. Right up there with Wild Mountain Blueberry. Or, even, dare I say, Spiced Pumpkin? And, smiles to Mom and Jen ... I will share with you when I come next weekend.

Which reminds me ... Jen, I'm sure Caroline forgot to tell you, but she promised to bring me back something from your trip to Alaska. She said something about a towel buddy. I told her what I really wanted was a diamond necklace. And, she agreed ... we are swapping ... one webkinz for a diamond necklace. Seemed fair to the both of us ... especially me!

And, because summer is really almost over ... Torrey and I are working to finish her summer reading. We are reading this ...
we started it together. It has some grown up themes (I read it in 10th grade ... she is going in 8th ... she really loves to tell people that!), and some grown up words. We are working really hard to read it so that we can watch the movie before we leave to go to Florida. Yes ... the movie.

And, after we watch the movie we will drink us some peach coffee and read the cliff notes.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Keep on Praying

Tonight my heart is full as I think of kiddos that I know and love who are at a crossroads with their health. My heart is full, too, for stranger kiddos here and here who I will never know but am praying tonight live a full and God pleasing life.

Tonight, Gracyn is back at Shand's fighting a virus. Please pray that it is only a virus. This little girl prayed that God would be glorified with her life ... the road certainly has been twisty and turny, but God certainly has been glorified.

And, then tonight I got a message from a friend in Orlando. Her son, S. is having an MRI tomorrow. When S. was born (as one of 3 itty bitty triplets) he contracted an infection that went to his brain. He had 8 abscesses in his brain, one the size of a golfball. He was not expected to live ... but, God has bigger plans for him.

And, if you think this sweet boy doesn't know that God holds him in His hands, please think again ... he stood in front of my Kindergarten class on his first day and not only shared his story with his new friends, but also gave the gospel message. His idol is Billy Graham. Oh, yes, God has big plans for him.

And, just to make you giggle ... I taught S. in Kindergarten, his brother L. in 1st (oh yes, we all "promoted" together ... although it felt like a demotion to me!) and then moved back to Kindergarten and picked up the littlest brother, B. Heading into 1st grade, L. crowed over and over again how he got me. Finally, S. could take it no more and said, "We all know you got her. But, she loved me first."

Yes, indeedy. And loving him didn't stop with the end of that sweet Kindergarten year. So, tonight I find my heart a thousand miles away, praying for a boy. Praying that his brain will be fine. Praying for peace and comfort for a family I adore. Praying that in the midst of the noise of the machinery he will "be still and know that I am God." (Psalm 46:10)

Because It's Been Awhile

So, what have we been up to? NOTHING! Ah, the glory days of summer! Torrey just asked if we were doing anything special tomorrow ... and was thrilled when I said, "No." We spend a lot of time away from our house during the school year ... which is hard for homebodies ... so we enjoy us some good ole' home staying during the summer.

But, that's not to say we haven't been doing a lot of this ...
swimming in Linda & Paul's pool. Which lead to my worst sunburn of the year. Sunscreen is a good thing. Forgetting sunscreen is not.

We are heading back to Linda & Paul's on Sunday to swim and see these cuties ...
or should I say cutie? Paul Andrew is coming to town with the kids. I am sure I will be terribly saddened when I see how big they are ... which is a sure sign I am getting old. Sigh.
I have also been drinking a lot of this ... which is probably why I am suffering from a case of insomnia lately. I heart my keurig machine. So much I have talked many other people into getting one. You are welcome Mom & Dad (and Jen who drinks more than her share of coffee when she is at their house). And Ronnie & Debby. And Linda & Paul. Let me see ... anyone else?

However, I can't take credit for the discovery of the keurig machine. In the summer of 2006, Robin told me about the keurig while we were at the beach house. I kept asking her about it. And asking her about it. And, still I was surprised when I arrived in Houston in July and Dean had ordered me my very own keurig machine. Sweet.

I think he was hoping to stop a mental breakdown from the move from Florida before it happened. A keurig can cure most anything ... but, ya'll, the move was hard ... it really isn't a miracle machine!
And, finally, the duck problem. I am afraid to type this, but I think our last duck has flown away from our house. I really didn't think those BB's hurt ... until Dean showed me the watering can. Nice work, hon. For the record, there are several holes in the watering can ... Dean used it for target practice. He still enjoys shooting off the gun ... much to the annoyance of our neighbors.

And, now you know when I say we have been up to nothing, I mean it. Happy Wednesday! Wait ... I forgot this is supposed to be "Wordless Wednesday". Dern.

I Am a Geek

Or so that is what Torrey thought today. When I used the word "redonculous" in a text message to my sister. She was mostly upset because I was using her new phone to send the text message with "redonculous" in it. She wanted me to sign my name. I wouldn't.

Sweet Torrey, there are some lessons to be learned from your getting upset from my usage of the word "redonculous" ...

First, when your cell phone is better than mine, that is the price you pay.

Second, at least I didn't use it in front of any of your friends ... but, I can since I now know how much you love the word.

Third, you should know that I will embarrass you many, many times in my career as your mother. It is just part of my job ... and, oh how I love it!
And, what is worse? Using "redonculous" (correctly I might add) or hanging spoons from your nose?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

And He's Off!

My dad is "off" again this week. Or, should I say "out"? As in "out" of the country. Or, as in "out" of contact. But, thankfully, not "out" of God's care! Please pray for my dad as he travels to Cameroon on Friday to minister to the people there. And Torrey thought San Antonio was hot!

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20

Random Acts of Kindness

Tonight, sleep won't come. It always happens this time of year. I have two weeks left until I go back to school. Two weeks. My mind races with all that I still have to accomplish in the next two weeks. My mind races with all that I hope for this school year. My mind races with thoughts of new little strangers who will soon become my friends.

Well, that is how it usually is. Tonight my mind is a thousand miles away.

When we were still living in Southbridge (see ... I told you it was a thousand miles away ... maybe I should have also said it was a decade ago, too!), my dad was all set to preach one Sunday when he started to not feel well. He was rushed to the local hospital. By the time we got there, plans were being made to transport him to a bigger hospital in a bigger town.

And, tonight I am remembering what I was feeling in those moments. Dean was with Torrey. And he was the only person I wanted to talk to in those moments of rising panic. He was the only person I needed to talk to in those moments of rising panic.

I was living in a time before cell phones. My only option was the hospital pay phone. And, I did not have a quarter to make the call. As I was digging looking for a quarter, some stranger placed one in my hand.

And, tonight I was trying to remember if that person was a man or a woman. I cannot remember. I just remember thanking them profusely for a random act of kindness to a stranger.

Did they know how much that quarter meant to me? Did they know how they helped to ease my heart in that moment? Or, was it done and for them forgotten?

And, tonight I can't forget. I have actually thought of that moment often over the years. Wondering what I would have done had the shoe been on the other foot. Wondering if I have shown kindness to someone in the moment they needed it most. Wondering if I would have even realized there was a need right before me.

My dad, by the way, is fine today. He was fine then. Tests were run and whatever was seen in the beginning was healed. Not a surprise to us ... just a surprise to the doctors. He heads off this week to Cameroon on another mission trip ... how different this world would have been had that day ended differently.

And, so tonight I can't sleep. The start of a new school year is soon. Um, I am not finished beating myself up over last year. I have asked myself many times did I love enough? Did I love too much? If only ...? Why didn't I ...? Did the ones I was called to love know that I loved Him first and foremost? When they are my age will they look back on last year and think, "She loved me. She loved Jesus." ....

And, so tonight I sit up in the wee hours of the morning thinking of a stranger who was kind to me with out knowing me. Was kind to me just because. Wondering if I would have done the same for a stranger. Wondering if I would have done the same for someone I knew, someone I loved. Wondering if in the moment that someone needed it most was I too busy to know that God was prodding me to act. Wondering if in that moment that God was prodding me to act was I too wrapped up in myself or my world that I missed it. Wondering.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Jill and Kevin Got Married!

Jill and Kevin got married ... and, while I don't know Jill and Kevin, I know this one truth about them ... they did not get married in a Baptist church. Why? Because we don't dance ... and, don't even try the whole "David danced before the Lord" thing ... I am the daughter of a Baptist minister. It doesn't work. I know this other truth about Jill and Kevin ... they know how to make an entrance. And, as I watched, I laughed, and then wished I had been there. And, then it hit me ... every wedding should begin like this ... as a celebration of what is to come. Joyful. Full of life. Overflowing with exuberance. And, then I knew one more truth about Jill and Kevin ... they got it right. (Oh, and they know how to party!) Congratulations Jill and Kevin!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

How Things Can Go Terribly Wrong in a Matter of Minutes

Or, perhaps I should subtitle this post "Why My House Smells Like Smoke".

Friday nights are usually pizza nights. (Ok, so since this blog is about honesty, so are the nights I don't feel like cooking.) Zack (the dog) was being especially persnickity Friday night and was convinced that he was going to get him some pizza. His jumping on the cabinets to try for the pizza was really annoying me. So, I fixed his wagon and put the pizza box in the oven.

And, in the process I about fixed my wagon, too.

Fast forward to Monday night. I actually cooked. (Insert "Hallelujah" chorus here ... and a loud shout of "Amen!" from Dean.) My cooking involved the oven. I turned on the oven to preheat, much like I have a billion times since I have been married. (I do like to cook, it just isn't always my favorite thing. I am no Emeril.) I went about my cooking. And, suddenly smelled smoke.

And, here is why I can't be on the arson squad. I thought the smoke was coming from Dean's laptop, which he was using on the kitchen island. I was actually convinced. Then, I thought perhaps the garbage was on fire. Why? Who knows. Dean looked at the oven and in an instant we both thought the same thing. (Which sometimes happens when you have been married for 17 years.)

The pizza box!

I opened the oven door and a billow of smoke came out. Dean rushed to action. I turned in circles ... which probably means my dreams of being a firefighter are out too. He grabbed the smoking pizza box and ran it outside.

Meanwhile, Torrey was in with Gram. As she sat on her bed, she had a front row view of Dean putting out the pizza box on the driveway. She said, "Gram, would you look at Daddy!" ... and, went back to watching TV with Gram. Which gives the impression we have burning pizza boxes in our house a lot. We don't.

It has been 24 hours and the downstairs still smells a little of smoke. I told Dean it smelled like someone was lighting matches this morning and he said, "Yeah, a thousand matches."

But, we are OK. And, lessons have been learned. Like why didn't the smoke detectors go off? And, where ARE the smoke detectors? And, don't leave pizza boxes in the oven ... EVER! And, perhaps I should take some fire safety classes. And, when starting the oven, just make sure nothing is inside the oven. And, maybe a little pizza for Zack isn't so bad .... well, maybe it is. Sorry Zack!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Linky Linky Linky

As I blogstalk, I occasionally come across some things that are too good to keep to myself. And, so tonight I have a few things that I must share. Enjoy!

First, enjoy this sweet Gotcha! video of a stranger baby from TN. She was born in Ethiopia and traveled around the world to reach her forever family ... I warn you ... the women who cared for her loved her ... you will weep when they tell her goodbye.

And, here is some information of our Gracyn. She continues to do well ... and gives God all the glory. Oh, and here is a video of her singing at FBC/O ... you will weep.

And, finally, pray for this little stranger girl ... Kate McRae. Less than 3 weeks ago she was diagnosed with brain cancer. Her parents are praying for a miracle and living every parents worst nightmare. But, God has not left them. He does care. And in the midst of their sorrow He did this (from Kate's mom, Holly) ...

I wanted to share a story that happened yesterday (this is one of many.) We were in the waiting area, passing time, and I saw what I thought to be a goldendoodle dog. I asked the ladies if my daughter could see the dog. You see a little over a month ago we moved into our home in Gilbert. Kate was convinced this meant we were buying a dog. She was relentless in her pursuit of getting a dog. She even tried to get her dad to buy me one for Mother's Day. We kept putting her off, but discussed options anyway, knowing she would eventually win. Goldendoodles were at the top of the list (they are a cross between a golden retriever and a poodle.) So, when I saw the dog in the hospital, I thought she might like to see her. When I told the ladies Kate's name, they said they were actually coming to see her! I told them of Kate's interest in Goldendoodles and the woman smiled. She said that she had a breeder who would love to give one of her Goldendoodles to a child in need. The breeder told this woman that she would know when she met the right child. And then there was Kate. So today she offered our dear Kate her very own Goldendoodle. Why do I tell you this? Let me say, it does not lessen the pain of Kate's condition. It does not ease the ever present ache in our souls. However, it is a reminder that God sees. He sees our child's pain. He sees our suffering. And, right in the midst, in different ways, He has not forgotten and not forsaken us. Our tears still fall, and our hearts still break, but we know our God is near.

I have pondered these words since I read them - with tears coursing down my cheeks. I cannot imagine this sweet family's pain. I would not want to walk their path. But, in this moment of their sorrow, their pain, their heartache, they are living a sermon to the world. God is good. God is good. God is good.

Rite of Passage

It just happened. And, it made me laugh. The fan light switch was turned off and Dean called Torrey to come downstairs to turn it on for us. That would be the fan light switch in the family room. Which would be where we were sitting. The switch was a mere 3 feet behind me. We actually discussed whether or not we should call her down to flip the switch. And we decided we would. And, boy, did it feel good.

And for tomorrow's trick, we will make her move piles of bricks around the backyard!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A Week of Serving

Home Again Home Again Jiggity Jig

Torrey is home. (Insert Hallelujah chorus here.) The vans pulled in around 8:30 last night. God giggled when her van was the last one to get there ... boy! did we miss her!

We live about 45 minutes from church ... it took her the entire ride home to tell us about her week. Well, we got most of it on the ride home ... she keeps sharing with us things she did and things she learned. It was a great week!

We asked her if it was hot. She said it was, but it didn't bother her because she was having a blast. Thank you for praying.

Her group went to 3 different places ... staying mostly at Strong Foundation and Daily Bread. They did put gravel on a new playground at Valley High Baptist Church ... which my mom was tickled to tell Torrey was the church we attended when we lived in San Antonio (when I was born.) Torrey's week was spent building fences, feeding the hungry, loading and unloading. She nearly squealed when she told us that she made cement. Cement. And, she dug holes to build a fence. She took ownership of that fence ... more than once she called it "Our Fence". As we heard about all that she saw and did, we were pleased ... but, more importantly, God was pleased.

She came home tired. She slept today until 12:33. We are grateful for the opportunity she had this week to get her feet wet in missions. I am sure it is just the start of her mission trips!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I Heart Chick-fil-a

I love living in the South. I was born in the South. I will die in the South. And, if I don't, please just throw my body in someone's old pick up truck and drive me to the Mason Dixon line. Please.

One of the sweet joys of living in the South is Chick-fil-a. How you people live up north without its delicious chicken I do not know. You say you won the Civil War? Seems to me you are the big losers.

And, now for your viewing pleasures ... the Chick-fil-a song. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Almost Wordless Wednesday

This picture more accurately displays what the kids were like when they left for San Antonio on Sunday. I am sure right now they are 6 different degrees of tired. We could finally take it no more and Dean emailed back and forth with one of the Pastors to see if he had heard anything. No real word on Torrey specifically, but they are there and they are all fine (although one of the leaders fell as soon as they got there and tore her Achilles tendon ... we think that is what happened) It is a cool 104.7 in San Antonio right now. There has actually been a heat advisory posted for the San Antonio area that will be in effect until Thursday night at 8. Please continue to pray.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Jury Duty Schmury Duty

I was a good citizen today. I went to Jury Duty for the first time in my life. I had to be there at 12:30. When I got there, they had us make a line. Outside. Outside in Texas. I suddenly had the feeling that today wasn't going to go the way I hoped. We were seated (there were well over 100 people there ... maybe closer to 150) We were given the chance to go before the judge and ask for a postponement. I thought about it, only because I have a couple of workshops to go to next week. I decided to take my chances.

They pulled 28 people and sent them to the real courthouse to go through a jury pool. And, then they made us wait. A long time. They could have at least put on Michael Jackson's funeral for us ... since we are a nation in mourning, after all.

And, after waiting for 90 minutes, the clerk came up and said this to us:

Knock, Knock
Whose there?
Lucky who?
Lucky you ... you get to go home

And a comedian was born ... and 100 people ran from the courthouse before they had a chance to change their minds!

I did dvr Michael Jackson's funeral. I am obviously not proud. It is summer. What can I say? There isn't anything good on TV. I had to stop it before it even began ... when the gospel choir started to sing "Soon and very soon we are going to see the King ..." and then his casket was wheeled in. The circus is coming to Los Angeles tomorrow ... evidently it got started one day early. Good grief.

For those of you wondering ... it was 100.9 in San Antonio today. Still no word from or about Torrey. No news is good news.

Monday, July 6, 2009

In a Bit of a Funk

I am ... I am. It is weird to not have Torrey home ... although I didn't feel this way when she went to camp. Odd. Wish we had thought to have someone twitter while they were in San Antonio. Got to love technology ... what did we do before cell phones, text messages, or twitter? How did we get in contact with those we loved ... oh, yes, I remember ... snail mail. We should go back to mailing letters ... we are losing a true art form. In a letter you would never say "talk 2 u soon!" ... you would actually write the words.

And, so, while the house was being cleaned, I tried to amuse myself at Target and Hobby Lobby. Did not work. I found the flip flops Torrey wanted in her size and I cried. And I bought them for her. Had to. They were in her signature colors. I texted Dean about 32 times ... he didn't respond. I decided against a pedicure and headed home. Missing my girl. Knowing she is fine and NOT missing me. She will come home and read this and think I am being silly.

I am supposed to go to jury duty tomorrow (couldn't come during the school year!) ... please let me get out of it, please let me get out of it, please let me get out of it. Can you tell I am looking forward to it? Tonight we are going to watch an episode or two of 24 ... we have 10 hours to go (we didn't have time to watch it during the regular season ... what did we do before dvr's?!) I am working on school stuff. I have a little project I am going to try to pull off. I am praying for my girl. And, praying that Friday comes quickly ... what am I going to do when she goes to Florida for 10 days in August?!

And, it is 102 in San Antonio today ... but, they are predicting it will only be 97 tomorrow!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

San Antonio Bound

This afternoon, Torrey left for a week long mission trip to San Antonio, Texas. She is with a group of middle school students from our church ... and 7 brave, brave, brave adults!
I would say she was excited to go, but that word isn't exciting enough. We are thrilled that she has this opportunity to go and be a part of something great. And, we are even more thrilled that this is something she desires to do and isn't being made to do.
Torrey and her gaggle of girls. It is nice they are taking such a quiet group to San Antonio ... HA!
Torrey and her girl, Marissa. Such sweet friends!
And, here is the group ... ready and excited to go. I think they were taking 40 this year ... which is 50% more than went last year. God is definitely up to something!
Torrey's van. And, now for the rest of the story. Torrey is in group one (there are 2 groups ... an "outside" group and an "inside" group ... Torrey is in the "outside" group) When they were telling the kids which vans they could go in, Torrey's group had the option to go in 2 vans, one of which the youth leader was driving. Do I really need to say that his van was packed to the gills with kids and the other van only had 4 in it? They told the kids that some of them had to move to the other van .... and the kids did not give any eye contact. They finally got it worked out, but it made us giggle.

6 of "Group One" girls ... Lindsay is the older looking girl on the far left (top row) ... she is a summer intern who has given up her summer to spend it with our kids. The girls love her ... and we love that she loves Jesus and is pouring Him into these girls!

And, after this picture (and a final "You can go now, Mommy!") they were off. We do not do well with the whole putting her into someone else's care thing. Camp was OK ... they were contained, but this ... this is altogether different. This morning in Sunday School we were praying for our kids who are heading out on mission trips this week and one of our pastors said "I always assume they will be safe" ... and it was like he was talking to me. So, I will spend this week assuming she will be safe and instead pray that God reveals Himself to her in an amazing way.

Please pray with us for our girl. Also pray for the weather ... we are in the midst of heat wave ... they are expecting temperatures to go as high as 115 this week. Little girl will be spending her week OUTSIDE ... please pray for gentle breezes so that the weather won't become what they remember of this week. And, as you pray for this group in San Antonio, our church has teens in Chile and San Diego this week as well. We know God is doing something great in the lives of these kids!

Happy July 4th (on July 5th)

Happy July 4th! It wouldn't be a summer holiday without a trek to Pinehurst to spend the day with Linda and Paul ... it was scorching outside (well over 100 ... for the umpteenth day in a row) ... the pool was perfect. The food was perfect. The fun was perfect. The day was perfect.My morning started early. We were in charge of snacks for Sunday School, and I have been wanting to try this recipe ... but, I needed to make them when I was cooking for a lot of people since the recipe makes 7 pans. That's right ... SEVEN pans of mouthwatering goodness. They were yummy. Very yummy!
Steve ... this pan was yours. Was would be the operative word since they are no more. We really did miss you in Sunday School this morning!
You have got to love a cute girl wearing a patriotic bathing suit. We have gotten a lot of wear out of that suit ... oh, Gap, how we love you!
And, you have got to love a cute guy in a patriotic shirt. You should also notice the date on his shirt. 2001. If ever there was a year to be patriotic, it was 2001. Seems like a lifetime ago some days and like just yesterday other days. May we never forget the men and women who put their lives in front of ours to make sure there is never again a September 11th!
Oh, and here is Gram with her Grandogter, Gussi ... is it just me or do they sort of look alike?
Ahh, this is the life ... just floating around, not a care in the world, relaxing in a pool you don't have to clean. Although, you may want to look up Dean ...
Linda and Paul had friends visiting them from Louisiana. Torrey and the girls enjoyed jumping off the bridge. Who needs a diving board when you have a bridge?
Dean and Torrey spent about 20 minutes trying to get on this raft together ... once they were on, Torrey decided they should sit "criss cross applesauce" ... and, then they were off. Just like that. Here they are in mid fall (actually, only Torrey went under ... Dean was able to hang on!)
And, when I saw Hatti sleeping I had to get a picture. Hatti is Linda and Paul's new puppy and she NEVER sleeps when we are there. She gets bigger every time we go over ... I think they should change her name to Clifford!
This is what I usually see when Hatti is around ... she has yet to learn the wonder of personal space!
But, isn't she adorable?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Torrey ... Your Mother is Watching!

In the middle of June, Torrey spent 5 fun days here ... we sent her there to learn about Jesus ... and then I found this picture ...
Torrey would be the one with her tongue sticking out. Tor, you should smile for every picture that is taken of you because you never know what will appear on my blog!

(In a side note ... she did learn about Jesus, and the girls above are some of the sweetest girls and her "gang" who she is real with!)

Friday, July 3, 2009


On June 27th, Dean and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary. We went to San Antonio to celebrate. When we got to our hotel we realized the temperature was ...
102 degrees. I'm sorry, it should never be allowed to get that hot. It is not right. It is just not right.
We checked out our room, turned the AC way down, and grabbed some water bottles so that we could head out to the balmy San Antonio weather. But, first some pictures from the balcony ...
this was the view looking straight out. Not sure what the buildings were ... looks like a hotel and a parking garage. Nothing but the best for us!
And this is the view straight down ... the San Antonio river walk! There was a little stage and the audience sat across the "river" to watch. We saw a group of dancing, sweaty girls, there was a "fiesta" at night, and in the morning, the color guard was out to sing "The Star Spangled Banner" and salute the flag. Quite moving because the audience was young (YOUNG!) airmen/airwomen.
A picture for Linda and Paul. The week before they were in California and were able to see the giant sequoia trees. They sent us amazing pictures of the trees. We were jealous. So, we made our own picture of the trees in San Antonio. Not the same.
The is one of the little bridges that goes over the river walk. Did I mention it was hot that day? Well, it was a little warm. That night for dinner we ate on the river walk at Paesano's. It was delicious. So delicious I forgot to take a picture. We have eaten there before when we went with Torrey ... we took a risk going back. Sometimes the second time isn't what you remembered the first time to be. Not so this time. It was fantastic!
The next morning we ate breakfast at Schilo's. Which is a German delicatessen. Which should be obvious by my beer stein of orange juice.
And, here I am waiting for my breakfast. I am willing to take a risk at times. And today was one of those days. I ordered "potato pancakes" because the waitress said they would be just like regular pancakes. For the record, Lydia is a liar. A big, fat liar. Because those potato pancakes were not like regular pancakes served with syrup ... they were more like very flat hash browns. Served with apple sauce. Big mistake on my part ... to order the potato pancakes and to listen to Lydia.
And, what trip to San Antonio is complete without a trip to Texas' most honored shrine, The Alamo. 189 brave men died for the state of Texas as they tried to hold onto the mission during the war with Mexico to win Independence. Although all were lost, they held out long enough to allow Sam Houston to gather troops and supplies for the battle at San Jacinto, which was won by Texas and caused them to win the war. Sam Houston went on to become the first President of the Republic of Texas, although he believed it was his sole responsibility to keep the republic safe until he could see it become a true state in the Union. Also, did you know that Texas is not a state. We are a republic. Which means not only are we special, but we can also fly our state flag at the same height as the United Sates flag. Only Texas. We are very proud of that fact. Very proud. And, that my friends is your Texas history lesson for today.
On the way home we stopped at the outlets in San Marco. We went through small town after small town to get back to I-10 ... one of which was Luling, Texas. (As I was telling my dad he reminded me he once lived in Luling ... he was excited to hear it was actually "Watermelon Thump Day" as we drove through Luling. Got to love a small town. Got to love Texas.)

It was a fun trip. Spent with my favorite person. Who happened to tell me he wants to celebrate our 20th in Italy. Um, I think we will be celebrating our 20th next year!

Busy Busy Busy!

It is the day before the 4th and since the 4th falls on a Saturday Dean had the day off. By the time today rolled around, we had a ton of things we wanted to get accomplished. We did hang around the house for a while this morning ... mainly because Torrey didn't get much sleep at her "Princess Training Camp" ... oh, I mean "Mission Training Camp" ... and we were nice and let her sleep in. I am surprised this didn't wake her up though ...
... the duck hunt of July 3rd. They keep coming back. I thought ducks were smarter than that ... oh, wait. They are birds. Which means this will be going on all summer. We watch the ducks fly to our neighbor's houses and high five each other ... because they are no longer our problem. Don't you wish you had neighbors like us?!
We started the morning by going to JC Penney's to return this bed because we got this ...
instead. We are aware they look similar ... but, they are not even close. The finish was coming off the other bed as we were putting it together, so we broke down and went back to our beloved Pottery Barn Teen for this beauty. Oh PB Teen, we will not stray again ... we have learned our lesson!
After that we ran into this store. If you aren't from Texas you have no idea what this store sells ... I thought it was a teacher store. Um, no. That would mean the name made sense. It is actually a sporting good store. Torrey was in need of some running shorts. She is sporty like that. Not sure who she got it from ... definitely not me!
Then it was off to Raising Cane's for lunch. They make the most delicious chicken strips. And, only chicken strips. So, don't go there looking for a burger. You will be disappointed. But, the chicken is oh-so good.
And, then we came here to buy school supplies (waaaaahhhh!) because it is our employee discount weekend. We only get them 4 times a year and we really, really love them. A lot. And, you should know that it IS a big deal that we are at a Houston Staples to buy our school supplies ... because up until last year we had to order everything online because there wasn't a Staples in Houston. That's right. There wasn't a Staples in the 4th largest city in the country. It was a very exciting day when they finally came to Houston. A very exciting day indeed.

After this we went to HEB (our grocery store ... they try to say that it stands for "Here Everything is Better", but I know the truth. It is the initials of they guy who started HEB. His name would be "Howard E. Butts". I guess "Here Everything is Better" is better.) It wasn't a fun fun experience, so there are no pictures. Torrey is now doing summer reading, Dean is napping and I am making dough to make homemade cinnamon rolls for Sunday and I made a Texas Sheet Cake to bring to Linda's tomorrow. Surprise Linda ... I forgot to tell you!