Friday, September 29, 2023

Finally Friday - Fall is Here?

Fall is in the air.  Well, it's a dream concept this year in Texas.  Still 90s as I write this post.  But evening temps are lowering and we've had a few drips of rain. That cools the pool a lot. 
Still too hot for fall mums. So, I planted a gnome instead. 

" Sweater " weather indeed - no not the sweatshirt or a "jumper" as my UK friends call it.  Here in Texas we are still perspiring - ha!

I am playing an old Hall & Oates tune - "Fall in Philadelphia"  It allows me to sense the cooler tinge in the air, see the bright reds, golds, and oranges in the leaves, and smell a fireplace burning. 

Happy Fall Y'All!   Are you rich enough to afford a pumpkin this year?

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Wednesday Whatever - jujitsu, toes, and remember

I did not do an official post on Monday 9-11. It was a day of remembrance, of solemn vows, and it's hard to believe it has been twenty two years.  I am saluting  that day and I do believe this should be taught in school. It is a day of history that was a pivotal turning point for America.  

Meanwhile - here's our future. Two kick butt little girls who did great in  a jujitsu tournament. Skylar on the left got silver. Dakota on the  right got gold.  These are Kevin and Maria's youngest. Well rounded - they do well in school. And they are fearless. 
And here's the joy  that is in America.  Yes - Ray chose a Dallas Cowboy football salute for  this pedicure. We had a fun time with Chris and Krystal. I only got  blue. 

Crazy whatever Wednesday. 

Monday, September 25, 2023

Monday Moments - Cocktails for Three by Madeleine Wickham

 As bubbly as a bottle of champagne, Cocktails for Three by Madeleine Wickham is a silly quick poolside read. It has no redeeming value and I paid only fifty cents at a library book sale. But I was amused. 

Back cover:   Roxanne - glamorous, self-confident, with a secret lover - a married man

Maggie - capable and high achieving, until she finds the one thing she can't cope with - motherhood

Candice - honest, decent, or so she believes - until a ghost from her past turns up

These three ladies meet every month at a swanky bar for cocktails. Of course they all work at a glossy fashion magazine. Of course they travel, live well, and are dressed for success. They are best friends and having the time of their lives. But all three have a secret. Friendship unravels for awhile as this romantic tale with a splash of scandal plays out.

Sometimes you just have to kill time with a ridiculous book. 

Friday, September 22, 2023

Finally Friday - The Five Star Weekend

 This is a classy junky read.  I really enjoyed The Five Star Weekend by Elin Hilderbrand as brain candy.

It's just fun. Total poolside read with no redeeming value. and that's okay in the summertime/fallish time. 

Four friends are gathered for a ridiculous weekend in Nantucket.  So many interconnected stories. So much dirt. I loved it. 

Who's cheating on whom?  The daughter filming this - she digs deep  and learns a lot about  her  mother. 

What  is the price of success?

This book is trashy in all of the right ways.  Perfect for an end of summer read.  Go for it!

Drink something crazy while you read it.       Trust me.   It helps.  

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Wednesday Whatever

 'Nuff said.  I am so disgusted with Texas schools. 


My mother  knew what I was reading.  That's up to families.  Don't keep the general public, kids, etc, from reading what  they want.  Was I ahead of my age?  Yes?  Did I totally get The Thorn Birds, for example?  Probably not.  But my mother (extremely modest) allowed it and I thank her. 

Allow kids, people to READ!!!!!!

I am going to say it - Jesus Christ.  What is wrong with people today?  

All this crap about "woke" or whatever.  Stop.  Just stop. 

And more power and respect to all teachers.   They are working so hard and being thwarted in so many directions.  I can understand why so many are bailing just when they are needed the most. 

All of the above is strictly my opinion.   

Monday, September 18, 2023

Monday Moments - The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

 The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah is almost as sprawling as the setting in Alaska. 

cover blurb  It's 1974 and the Allbrights are a family in crisis. They are alone, living off the grid, in a harsh and unforgiving wilderness. 

Ernt is volatile ever since his return from Vietnam. He can't hold a mechanic's job, distrusts America, and is impulsive.  Cora loves her husband madly, deeply and will follow him anywhere. Leni, age thirteen, is caught in the middle. 

Now - Alaska. That's going to be the answer for their lives. Ernt is convinced they can make a new life in this wild free land on property given to him by a Vietnam buddy who didn't make it back. The three months of summer seem promising. But alas, darkness and winter comes and stays and stays. The peril from wild animals - some outside, some in your own home. 

Kristen Hannah explores human frailty and resistance. Her story will chill you as you watch Leni grow into her destiny as a kid in 1974 to a young woman with a baby in 1986. Alaska is wild and wonderful  in this well written family saga. 

Friday, September 15, 2023

Finally Friday - A Castle in the Backyard

A  Castle in the Backyard by Betsy Draine and Michael Hinden was a very fun read.   Perigord in the Dordogne district of France has castles everywhere.  This couple  fell in love with a stone house that became their summer home  and it  was in the shadow of a castle. 


so romantic. So perfect.  Their story of dealing  with realtors  in France.  Of actually finding this dream home and then making it work is  amazing. 

You will love the locals.  You will want to  eat at every restaurant they visit.  You will want to love this whole region as they did. 

A Castle in the Backyard - the Dream House in  France is a very fun read.  I was ready to move there at the word croissant!


Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Whatever Wednesday - Kinsey and Me - Sue Grafton

 Sue Grafton     RIP

Kinsey Millhone    ABC Murder cases. 

She was an awesome writer.   This book has  some of her beginning stories - just crafting the Kinsey character.  It also involves some autobiographical material

Insights into the woman behind a HUGE bestselling series. 

Thank you Sue Grafton.  'Nuff said. 

Monday, September 11, 2023

Monday Moments - Crooked Hearts by Lissa Evans

 Crooked Hearts  by Lissa Evans was a tricky little  read. I spent fifty cents at the library  book sale  for this and it was totally worth it. I wasn't convinced at first that I liked the characters, but then I was hooked. Poor Noel - age 10, no  family is evacuated from  London to a northwest suburb. It's WWII.  Vera Sledge takes him in. Her  life is a mess and she  needs this smart young man to help her collect money for "widows", or whomever folks will fall for.  The two of them scheme. Let the games begin. 

I won't give away more.  Let's just say this is a very unconventional story in the middle of a very serious war. They are bombed.  They are skirting the law. It's amusing, touching, and a really good story.  Thumbs up. 

Friday, September 8, 2023

Finally Friday - I Love the 80s

Well it was actually Sunday August 20th when Ray and I attended an I Love the 80s concert at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth.  What the heck!  Fun flashback and live music. 

Dang it was mostly "old" people at the concert.  The good thing is we all pretty much sat to enjoy the music, and stood for the big numbers at the end of a set.  I never did want to stand through a whole concert, even back in the day.

Tommy Tutone opened at exactly 7:30 pm.  He was amusing and of course we could  all sing along - Jenny, Jenny 867-5309

Paul Young was a UK dude and I only knew one  song. His set was the  weakest. The man lost his voice and his looks. His big number was an old Daryl Hall song - Every Time You Go Away.  

Next up - Hooters - a Philly band. They still sounded great and were tight. Lots of great songs and energy.  And We Danced,  All You Zombies, Day by Day     I really enjoyed them after all of these years. 

Finally - our star, Rick Springfield. He's 74 but looks great - lean with  the leather coat, long hair. He's lost a bit of the voice, but still adequate. He talked, had videos playing of himself back in the day of pretty boy, General Hospital, etc. You can tell he was having a blast and could also laugh a bit at his image. And the finale song was Jessie's Girl - he had his shirt off, sang like crazy, and really ended on a high note. 

A friend sent me this photo - apparently sometime he was at a liquor store signing rum bottles. He and Sammy Hagar are in on a product.  He did put in a plug onstage and swigged some rum. 

Fun time all around and Ray was a good sport for taking me. He knew some lyrics too!

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Whatever Wednesday - Leonardo Drew # 235T at the Amon

Fort Worth's Amon Carter Museum.  Leonardo Drews   No. 235T  This is an original art installation in a very cool entry of this museum.  It might look a bit messy at first and then it is very cool.  I stood in the middle and just observed, digested, and  appreciated the artist vision. 

 He draws his materials by "weathering them through oxidation, molding, and carving.  He refers to  anchor planets and then  stars."  It's  all very organic and just damn cool. 

At first I was overwhelmed.  And then I stood in this gallery and let my eyes adjust and appreciate his vision. 

The Amon Carter Museum is awesome.   They have also interspersed Avedon's pieces - photos of the west throughout their gallery.  I love Avedon photos.  So personal and full on tricky. 

My Saturday of Art was fun.  Plus a yummy lunch at the Modern. Very flavorful.  

Monday, September 4, 2023

Labor Day Monday Moment - Maya Art

Finally visited the Kimbell Art Museum last week for their Maya Divinity Art exhibit.  Truly amazing. 
Ancient art that is in glorious form. So many symbols and artistic tradition on display.  The hieroglyphs are fantastic - Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico.   Ancient civilizations that flourished and that were brilliant. 
Just look 
We look at the lives of the gods. The balance of the Sun and the Moon.  Kings. Goddesses. So many sculptures, vessels, and ornaments.  This was organized from the Met in NYC and the Kimbell.  We are so fortunate locally to have the expertise and eye to pull this together.  Thank you!

Friday, September 1, 2023

Finally Friday - Happy Anniversary

Here we are on the beach in Pensacola FL.   Wedding  vows were said by  Chris and  Krystal on 7/31/2023.    

Thirty Four (!) years ago, Ray and  I both said "I Do" in front of a Justice of the Peace in Arlington. 

We've had a lot of adventures since then, and have had a lot of just drudgery days too.  That's marriage.  Good/ bad, better/  worse, Fun/ sad - the full gamut of emotions.  

When you look at the history backdrop of 34 years -  9/11, Covid, and more - it's  all a bit daunting. 

But, somehow we've always found beach time,  pool time, or just  plain old hang out time. 

On paper,  we are an  odd couple.  In real life - we do have fun.  He  laughs at the crap that comes out of my mouth.  He's a keeper!

Love ya Ray