Monday, April 23, 2012

Closet Cleaning

The closet in Betsy's bedroom hasn't been really cleaned since she left home to attend Baylor University in 1995.  Before I retired it was on my "Summer To Do List" each year.  Somehow I just never got around to taking care of this task.  When I retired last June  it was moved to the top of my "To Do List".  But our summer was busy with visits from our girls and their families, so I told myself, "Just wait until things calm down in the fall."  When fall came I was enjoying myself so much......sleeping a little late, sitting on the porch drinking my coffee and reading the newspaper.  Rick and I had a fall vacation planned to the Smoky Mountains and it came really fast.  We had a wonderful time. The fall foliage was awesome. We returned home just in time to get things ready for our family to come for Thanksgiving. Of course everyone knows once Thanksgiving is over it is time to begin planning and decorating for Christmas.  Rick and I love all the special activities during the Christmas Season at our church. It is always a very busy time. The closet cleaning was now moved to my after Christmas "To Do List". 
However, after Christmas I chaired the committee to plan the 75th Anniversary of Procter Baptist Church.  The celebration was Sunday, March 5th.  Immediately after the anniversary celebration the girls had Spring Break. March 13th was Steffi and Tad's seventh wedding anniversary and they planned a trip to New Orleans and ask if we would keep Beau.  Of course we wanted to keep Beau and enjoy some special time with  him.  Betsy also came home during the week and when Steffi and Tad returned from their trip we celebrated Rick's birthday and the closet still hadn't been cleaned.
After everyone left and things were somewhat back to normal I created another "To Do List" once again placing "Clean Betsy's Closet" at the very top.  I was really tired from all the anniversary celebration and having the kids home, so I talked myself into taking a few days to just rest and relax.  But those few days turned into about two weeks.
Then a group of our friends talked us into taking a cruise with them at the end of April. The Monday after Easter Rick left for a trip to West Texas to turkey hunt.  I was ready!  This was the week I would clean the closet and I did begin.  This closet is really more than Betsy's is in her bedroom but it is a large walk in closet and in the last ten years it has become a storage closet for everything that didn't have a place.  This was going to be a BIG JOB......but I began.  It took  an entire day to just remove the boxes so I could walk into the closet.  Then each box had to be sorted and some of the items re-boxed.  I made piles of things which belonged to the girls which I did not know if they wanted to keep or not. I worked non-stop for three days, I was making head way but the task was far from done.  Then Rick called and told me the turkeys weren't cooperating and he was coming home on Thursday.  He had an agenda for Friday and Saturday which didn't include working on the closet project.
I am still not finished with all of the sorting and going through boxes. I am working on the project.  Each box holds memories. Letters from the girls while they were attending camp, school projects and papers, items from Rick's parents home and memos and honors my dad received from many organizations he was involved with during his lifetime.  Baby blankets make for my girls by my grandmother, Mama Pat.  I've laughed and I've cried. Some finds just had to be shared with my mother ( who lives with us).  It's been a walk down memory lane.
We leave Saturday, April 28th, for our cruise and I must have the "Clean Betsy's Closet" marked off my "To Do List" before the boat sails....
Wish me luck.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Easter Pictures

Top picture: Beau playing with his Easter goodies.

Middle picture: Beau, our daughter Steffi and her husband Tad.

Bottom picture: Rose and Bud with Beau.

The only thing missing is our younger daughter Betsy.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


The past two weeks have been very busy.  I went to Tyler to visit Betsy.  We shopped until the money ran out.  Took time to visit some of the beautiful gardens while in town.  Spring time is really lovely in East Texas. I returned home via Dallas.  I enjoyed a day with Beau, my grandson.  Got home just in time to get things ready for Easter.
Easter was wonderful.  Church, egg hunting and lunch with my mother, sister and her husband, oldest daughter and her family and of course my husband, Rick. We missed our youngest daughter Betsy who could not be with us. Thank you God for our Risen Savior, for spring time and the renewal of our earth and for my family.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Flower Planting Time


I love to work in my yard.  I come by it honestly, both my grandmothers loved their flower gardens.  Since the danger of any frost is long gone  I have begun my annual planting of new varieties of roses and other plants.  I enjoy being outside and getting my hands dirty while listening to the sweet chirping of the birds.  As much as I love this kind of work my body does not have the endurance it once did and I am finding everything is taking longer to complete.  I have been working on the project for three days now; Saturday, Monday and today (Tuesday).  I should finish in at least two more days.  When the project is complete and everything is blooming I will post some pictures of my labor. 
Planting reminds me of the cycle of our seasons.  I love Spring when the earth is bursting forth with newest and rebirth.  It helps prepare my heart for Easter which for Christians is a time of  great celebration and a reminder  of the  new life we can have in Christ Jesus.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Spring time in East Texas and Dewberries

I love spring time in East Texas.  The beauty of the azaleas and dogwoods are an awesome sight. It would be great if we could just freeze this time of year and not have to endure the hot humid summer which always follows.  Today, Rick and I went to his Deer Lease which is about 35 miles north of our home. Rick keeps a travel trailer there for his home away from home during hunting season.  The purpose of our trip was to close everything up, clean up and bring items home which he (Rick) will need for an upcoming turkey hunt to West Texas.  After we left the main highway and drove deeper into the Big Ticket we began seeing bushes with little white flowers along the one lane road.  These white blooms are the beginning of what will become dewberries.  It brought back memories of my childhood in Woodville.  Our house was not far from the cemetery where all of the neighbor kids gathered to play.  In May the fence around the cemetery was covered with dewberry brambles.  I can remember how good those berries tasted as we filled our bellies.  Of course when we got home it was no secret what we had been doing because of the color of our mouths and also the bluish-purple smears on our clothing.  When my grandmother was visiting she would send us back with a large plastic mixing bowl to gather what was left.  Then she would make us a Dewberry Clobber.  (The recipe follows.)
 The berry brambles we saw today won’t yield their harvest until mid-May.  Rick said we needed to mark our calendar so we won’t forget to go back and pick enough for a clobber. Maybe you can find some dewberries and make your own clobber. 
Dewberry Cobbler
Crust ingredients:                                                                         
1/2 stick of butter (2 oz.)
1 cup of flour (6 oz.)
1/2 cup sugar (3 oz.)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup of buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon salt
Filling ingredients
4 cups dewberries or blackberries
1/2 cup sugar (3 oz.)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place the rinsed berries in a large cast-iron skillet or nine-inch round cake pan, and toss the berries with the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and lemon juice. Let them sit for 20 minutes.
To make the crust, melt the butter on low in a pan, and then add the other ingredients. Dough will be slightly sticky, moist yet pliable.
Pat out the dough and place it over the berries.
Bake 40 minutes or until light brown and bubbling.
Serves six

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A Rainy Day

It has been raining here all day.  I love the sound of rain and if I don't have to leave the house it really isn't bad.  My "to do" list is long and I really should have done something worthwhile, but I decided to treat myself and do absolutely nothing.  I can't remember when I have taken a day off from my busy schedule. Tomorrow is another day and I'll get back to my list of things to do. If Beau were here he would be singing, "Rain, rain go away little Beau wants to play.....".   But just for today I will sit and listen to the falling rain.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Happy Birthday to the one I love!

Today is my husbands birthday.  Happy Birthday, Rick.  I love you more than words can say. I was thinking earlier about how many of Rick's birthdays I have celebrated with him.  I think it is 46 this year.  I can't remember all of them but I do remember some.  When the girls were younger and still at home they really liked to make dear old dad feel special. I remember several cakes they baked and decorated.  The last few years of Rick's mom's life she was here with us and added to his birthday celebration.  The plans this year weren't anything too grand.
I took him to lunch in Beaumont. Then to Cavender's Boots to purchase a new pair of his favorite shoes (they are like a cowboy boot without the tall top part).  If you know Rick you will understand about the shoes, because except for Sunday he wears them constantly. Once back home we made coffee, sat on the porch talked and listened to the wind, which is really blowing here today.  While the girls were here last week we had a early celebration.  Beau wanted cupcakes so that is what Rick got instead of a cake.  Last night a group of our dear friends from our church took him out for Mexican food and homemade lemon squares.  Maybe I will start now planning something really BIG for celebration #47.