Friday, October 23, 2015


Yesterday was a really big day. We got up early to meet son Austin and fiance Areej in Kyle, then headed over to the Texas Institute of Cultures in San Antonio, on the Hemisfair park grounds.

Why were we there? Because, after 15 years of being a "permanent resident",  this girl was about to make it official, and become a gen-u-ine "American Woman"!

The participants had to be there a couple of hours early to complete paperwork and get the lowdown on how the ceremony would be conducted. That left their loved ones plenty of time to wander around the museum which, by the way, is awesome.

They've got amazing displays for just about every ethnic group that helped to settle Texas.

The ceremony began with this little Army band playing everything from Sousa to Guns & Roses (seriously?!)...

and ended with a moving slide show and Lee Greenwood's ever popular Proud To Be An American song which, despite its stale overuse, almost always manages to make me teary-eyed. Especially on this day.

And, of course, there was a celebration afterwards involving mass quantities of food.

At Boudro's, on the River Walk

When asked how she felt about being an official U.S. Citizen, Areej rubbed her hands together in glee and said "Finally, I can VOTE!"

Wednesday, October 21, 2015


SPOILER ALERT: Geoff & Jessica, Don't Look!

Well, I've just been having waaaay too much fun pulling together a baby present for the little grand-nephew who's soon to make his arrival up in Ohio, and may need the occasional reminder of his father's Texas roots.

It all started with this spill-proof baby plate that I spotted at Paper Bear, over in San Marcos.

Unfortunately, they had already sold out of the sippy cups and bibs that went with it. But then a few weeks later, when the Muses and I were in Dripping Springs eating crêpes, I spotted these at Cowgirls & Lace.

Woohoo! I had me a theme going! Next up,  since I'm a bit fanatical about reading to one's kids, came these.

Last, but certainly not least, Li'l Buckaroo had to have some jeans, right?

That oughta do 'im, at least for the first year, dontcha think?

AHEM! Geoff? Jessica? I thought I told you not to look!!!

Monday, October 19, 2015


I spotted these guys at the garden center yesterday. Are they gorgeous, or what?

I've planted several of these expensive hybrid varieties in their eight dollar, one-gallon pots over the last few years. Unfortunately, they haven't proven to be very hardy or prolific, if they come back at all. As for the original native variety, well, I threw out a few cent's worth of seeds, and every year they just get better and better!

And yet, these guys are terribly tempting...

are they not?

Sunday, October 18, 2015


Found yet another well-written, attention-grabbing novel in the YA section of our little library this week.

Gotta love a book that, in addition to being a page-turner, also teaches you a thing or two. For instance, did you know that "by the end of April 2014, there were over two thousand U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan and nearly twenty thousand service members were wounded in action. In 2012 alone, there were more suicides in the military than deaths in combat, and most of those suicides were young men between eighteen and twenty-four years old, (and) more than half of the 2.6 million veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq struggle with physical or mental health problems related to their service. The VA continues to be underfunded, and many veterans fail to receive the quality care they need"? 

This book, written by Heather Demetrios -- granddaughter of one and daughter of two U.S. Marines -- tells what it's like to love someone who has actually been to Hell and back.