Monday, December 31, 2012

The Day After

Sitting here on this December 26th morning enjoying the play of sun and shadows on the fireplace while reflecting on the good times of Christmas 2012. 
This year was a combination of old and new traditions.
Friday night we had chili and decorated sugar cookies.  There was one major departure from tradition; Josh did not make any inappropriate sugar cookies.  His creativity must have been limited because there were no bear or ginger man shaped cookies to be bloodied and mutilated.  Or perhaps it was because Sara beat him to the punch with her three dimensional teachers love winter break but miss their students cookie.  :)
Since Teresa and Charlie moved to the Lake of the Ozarks there will be no more Christmas Eves spent at their Lexington home.  Their new lake home was not quite ready for occupation so they rented a five bedroom home with plenty of room for everyone to gather. 
We joined them for the weekend. 
Heading out on a bright and sunny Saturday morning.      
Whether it's her own home or a rental house Teresa does Christmas magic to perfection!
Here it was a playhouse tent set up in the corner of the living room.  The playhouse was in constant use while we were there; as an overnight sleeping space for Clara, or a hiding spot and play spot for Lucas and Eli, or an afternoon nap spot for a tired college student!  FUN! 
A large table for everyone to gather and visit. 
And everyone's favorite foods being prepared in the kitchen.
Evan with a soon to be upside down Lucas!
Charlie enjoying the sunshine and 50 degree temps in his KC Chiefs snuggie he stole from Stephen in the gift exchange! 
This picture of Lucas and Eli was taken after we left but it was so cute I just had to steal it from Jenny's Facebook page!
We headed back home Sunday evening.
Christmas Eve afternoon we had runzas for lunch, exchanged gifts and had a good visit before the kids headed off to the Lawhorn's and the Rapp's for more food and fun!  Josh had to work Christmas day. Sara and Evan joined us for leftovers and a competitive game of Scrabble where Bobby got 64 points for the word 'jihad'!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

More Fall Colors

A rainy Saturday morning, the leaf colors are so vibrant and the trunks of the trees stand out dark against the flashy colors!  
Life is good!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Keeping Score - The Fall Version!

The friendly competition continues:

Spring = NCAA Tournament March Madness
Fall = Fantasy Football

I should have posted this screen shot last week when my team was in 5th place not 7th!
Thanks Josh for setting us up with a league of our own!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Panoramic View

The new version of the iPhone operating system allows the camera to take panaramic shots!
I think that's pretty darn cool!
Bobby put down 1,000 pounds of fertilizer and 400 pounds of grass seed last weekend  and you can't tell from this shot but baby grass is starting to fill in some of the bare spots.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Birds & Blooms

Most of the flowers are still hanging in there after this long hot and dry summer.  Luckily we've gotten some nice soaking rains in the past week, the grass is even starting to green back up!

 Filling the humming bird feeder has become a twice a day job.  Normally there are 4-5 birds at the feeder at all times, and sometimes the number increases to 9-10!  It's kind of crazy and fun to watch! 

Friday Night Fishing

A new tradition seems to be developing around these parts; Friday Night Fishing.  The first week it was Bob, Sara, Evan, Josh & Susan.  The next week it was Bob, Josh, & Susan.  Plans are being made for another trip some time this week too!
 Medium Fish
 little fishy
Fun times at Lone Star Lake!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Funniest Griff Story Ever

Tonight we returned home after dark and my gentleman of a husband let me out of the truck at the garage and then backed his truck up into the parking spot next to the shed.  Meanwhile I went inside and brought Griffy out to potty.  While we were waiting outside under the full moon, Griffy found a cicada to play with.  Next thing we know, she has the cicada in her mouth and is running off to the other side of the driveway with the cicada chirping loudly from INSIDE her mouth!  We kept trying to get her to drop it, and chasing her around!  She is so dang hard headed there is no way she was letting her prize cicada go free.  Even when I offered her a treat she refused and kept running away from us, all the while chirping!  We got fed up with the game, left her outside and went inside to watch TV.  Then the standoff began, her looking in the back door, and us ignoring her while watching the Olympics.  Finally she laid down in the grass and after a bit I let her inside.....but she was torn, she would stop and sniff her cicada, come halfway to the door, go back and sniff some more.  And apparently cicadas are salty because Griffy has had several drinks of water since she came inside! 

What a funny, stubborn, chirping puppy!  

And on a side note.  Tonight was the inaugural appearance of team 'The Password is Taco' in the 23rd Street Brewery weekly live trivia contest.  We made a respectable showing and landed in 6th place after going for the gold and betting 20 points on the final question.  Highlights of from the evening included learning that Alaska, not Montana, is the state with the largest border shared with Canada.  And Knox is former president James K. Polk's middle name, not Karl!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Houston - from beginning to end

When Sara lived with us, each evening when she arrived home from work Bobby would jokingly say to her; 'how was work, start at the beginning and don't leave anything out'.  After awhile it became the standard humorous saying around here when asking someone anything!

So in the spirit of starting at the beginning and not leaving anything out.....

Sara has been fortunate to have the opportunity to attend five professional conferences during her first year of teaching!  Three of the conferences have been this summer.  Usually when she attends a conference she has to share a hotel room with another teacher and sometimes there are even events in the evening to keep the attendees busy.  But her latest conference was in Houston and she had a room to herself, plus the conference ended on Thursday and they didn't schedule her flight home until Friday evening, the Friday of her birthday no less!  So what's a mom to do but fly to Houston and hang out with her daughter on her 25th birthday!

Sara left for Houston on Sunday and I flew down to join her on Tuesday.  She was still in class when I arrived so I sent her the picture message below to let her know I had arrived (upon receiving the picture I'm sure Sara thought it was going to be a long four days!) The whiskey glass prop in the picture was borrowed from her hotel room bar, which was complete with a mirrored wall, small sink, refrigerator, glass shelves, and drink glasses of every shape and size!  Sweet suite, it even had an extra 1/2 bath right inside the door!
This is the view from her room on the 15th floor.  This side of the hotel faced a very nice residential area next to Rice University with tree shaded streets and backyard pools.  The other side of the hotel faced a downtownish area of Houston called the Houston Medical Center and Museum District.  There are 49 medical institutions in this area including the world renowned MD Anderson Cancer Center.  You can see the other Houston downtown area in the distance.    
We had a great view of the Rice University stadium.  I bet this is a popular hotel during football season!

Once Sara got 'home' from class we headed to the Galleria for an evening of shopping!  It was a really large mall so we decided to do it justice we would need to come back the following evening!  This picture is from an outdoor shopping area up the road from the Galleria where we stopped for a cupcake at Sprinkles (of Oprah fame) and to do a bit more window shopping!

Wednesday while Sara was busy learning new stuff at her conference I went to the Holocaust Museum and learned a few new things too.  A portion of the building was designed to resemble a brick chimney from a crematorium, a very sobering visual reminder of the atrocities that were committed.  I was fortunate to be able to follow along behind a group of teenagers who were being given a tour by a survivor of the holocaust, his commentary added so much to the museum experience.  
(The picture below is from the museum's website.) 
Wednesday evening was Galleria Round 2 where Sara found some great back-to-school clothing bargains!  After shopping we watched ice skaters at the Galleria ice rink!

Thursday morning I hung around the hotel room finishing one book and starting another.  I did venture out at lunch time to try a neighborhood restaurant for a sandwich.  There were no tables available inside so I ate outside on the patio where I had to keep a close eye on my food so this little pigeon fella and his friends wouldn't help themselves to my lunch!  Not exactly the relaxing lunch that I had envisioned!  After lunch I hit up a few of the nearby shops including a well stocked toy store!  I had planned on spending the rest of the afternoon at the MFAH Museum of Fine Arts Houston to take advantage of the free admission on Thursdays, but when I got to the museum parking lot I was one of five or six cars circling trying to find a parking spot, I gave up and headed back to the hotel to continue reading!  And to have a short nap!  

While I was fighting pigeons and napping Sara was spending her time here at Rice University, she took a couple of pictures of their pretty campus!
Thursday evening we headed out for more shopping, this time to hit up the annual Mardel teacher supply sale!  This had been a pre-planned destination once Sara found out the annual sale was happening the week she was going to be in Houston she googled and found three Mardel stores there!  We had even planned ahead and packed an extra soft sided travel bag in case she found lots of bargains (gotta love that Southwest Airlines is still not charging for checked bags!) 
After stocking up on fun teacher stuff and having dinner we decided to catch a late showing of the new Ice Age movie!
Sara ready to dig into her birthday breakfast at Cafe Express!

On the way to breakfast we made a quick stop to take a picture in front of Rice Stadium (Sara and Evan have a travel tradition of taking their picture in front of college stadiums!)

After breakfast we went to the Fine Arts museum that I had bailed out on the day before.  We spent several enjoyable hours there before heading to the airport.  We were treated to a wide variety of art including several Remington paintings and this statue.  
From Remington, Rembrandt, and Tiffany to this turquoise sequined Buddha it was a great way to spend our last hours in Houston!

Off to the airport for our 6:30 flight and a few birthday drinks at the airport Buffalo Wild Wings!

If you've made it this far in my travelogue you deserve a cookie, or a cupcake!  Wish I had one of these pretty and yummy Houston cupcakes to give you!

P.S.  Thanks Josh for lending me your Garmin to help us find our way around Houston, it sure made rush hour traffic bearable!