Archive | June, 2013

Wednesday: Words of Wisdom

20 Jun

When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for the moment. I want to give that world to someone else. Most people in the city rush around so, they have no time to look at a flower. I want them to see it whether they want to or not. – Georgia O’Keeffe

I spend a lot of time in the backyard with the dogs…in and out…in and out. Today, I noticed that the Crepe Myrtle trees were bursting with blooms after the well-needed rain. As I walked around to take some pictures, I was amazed at all the other brilliant colors and vivid blossoms. Even the grass was strikingly lush and green. This is Texas! I figured I better take some pictures now, while the earth is happy and colorful. July and August are not quite so amicable. It’s kinda fun to see beauty in your own backyard. It’s right there for the lookin’.

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Crepe Myrtles are so colorful.

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The Magnolia trees have a beautiful flower, but for such a short time. Kinda like life, enjoy it while you can.

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The Knockout roses are in full bloom and even the tall weeds are happy and bursting through the garden. Hey, the weeds are enjoying the rain too. Why not? (Maybe I’ll get to those weeds, maybe not!)

Tuesday Tips and Tricks: Peanut Butter Anyone?

19 Jun

A puppy is but a dog, plus high spirits, and minus common sense.
Agnes Repplier

Nothing calms a fussy child like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, but what do you do with a wild and crazy puppy? Why, grab a jar of peanut butter. The pet stores sell these large rubber dog toys called “Kongs” that are hollow in the middle with a small opening to put treats, cheese or peanut butter inside. The dog then spends endless hours licking the inside and playing with the toy…NOT!

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Old Prince was happy to play with his Kong for about five minutes, but Buck lasted less than five seconds. After adding peanut butter to each toy three times, the jar was just about empty. “Light bulb moment!” I gave Buck, the persnickety puppy, the entire peanut butter jar. (It was almost empty, but still had some left on the sides and bottom.) I took him outside where he could make a mess and bounce around. This new amusement entertained him for at least twenty minutes. Eureka! Now, I need to buy four hundred jars of peanut butter.

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Monday in McKinney: Neighbors Making a Difference

18 Jun

A community came out to support one of their own. Officer John Libby served on the McKinney Police Department from 2007 until May 27, 2013, when he was lost in an off-duty motorcycle accident. Officer Libby left behind a wife and two young children.

Sicily’s Pizza and Pasta in McKinney hosted a fundraiser today at 1502 W. University Drive. Owners Eddie and Merita sponsored this special event at their restaurant, which is normally closed on Mondays. They are donating 100% of all proceeds to the Libby family. Local police officers and firefighters volunteered as servers to help with the constant crowds. Neighbors, friends, and strangers stopped by for a great meal and to support the Libby family. People who couldn’t stop by to eat, phoned in donations or dropped off cards and cash. The restaurant was packed from 11am till 8pm.

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When I arrived around 4:30, the place was pretty full. I saw a young man sitting alone, so I asked if I might join him. His name was Jacob Sample from Frisco. He said that an email was sent to all the employees where he works about the fundraiser. Jacob had never been to Sicily’s, nor did he know Officer Libby, but he felt compelled to pay his respects and make a donation for the family. That’s what happens here in North Texas. People help strangers all the time. But actually, there are no strangers, just a lot of extended family. Y’all know what I mean!

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Jacob Sample from Frisco

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Eddie thanked each and every patron personally. Thank you, Eddie!

Sitting Around Sunday: Citizen Kane

17 Jun

Another lazy Sunday. While the remote control flipped back and forth from “Monk” to “Murder She Wrote” episodes, (Yes, another marathon with Jessica Fletcher solving murders all day) I stumbled upon a movie I hadn’t seen in years. “Citizen Kane” is an award winning 1941, American classic, starring and directed by the talented Orson Welles. I’d forgotten all the intricate flash backs and symbolism woven within the black-and-white scenes. But, I did remember “Rosebud.”

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CITIZEN KANE: After Kane’s death…
Female reporter: If you could’ve found out what Rosebud meant, I bet that would’ve explained everything.
Thompson: No, I don’t think so; no. Mr. Kane was a man who got everything he wanted and then lost it. Maybe Rosebud was something he couldn’t get, or something he lost. Anyway, it wouldn’t have explained anything… I don’t think any word can explain a man’s life. No, I guess Rosebud is just a… piece in a jigsaw puzzle… a missing piece.
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Charles Foster Kane went from rags to riches, acquiring phenomenal wealth and power, but never finding true happiness. He ended up alone and miserable, with only the word “Rosebud” whispered in his final breath. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it? If all the money and power in the world can’t bring you happiness, then what can? Maybe, looking everywhere for happiness and love is the problem, because it’s already there inside of you. You have to be able to give love to find love.

I didn’t want to give away the “Rosebud” symbolism in case you hadn’t seen the movie. If you are one of the five people on the planet who hasn’t seen it yet, put it on your bucket list of classic movies to see. It’s an oldie but a goodie.

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Saturday on the Square

16 Jun

The skies were overcast and the temps only in the 80’s this morning. A slight breeze made it a perfect Texas day. With no plans on my calendar, I headed off to the Square in downtown McKinney. I had a lovely breakfast at Snug, bumped into a few friends, and sat with my iPad, checking emails and Facebook. At 11am, the cutest little singer/songwriter played her guitar and belted out several of her own original songs. She is 13 year old Dori Grace, with the voice of an angel and the schedule of Justin Biener.

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Photo: Dori Grace Facebook page

After taking up space for two hours inside Snug, I sat outside and did a little drawing. I often take paper, pencils, watercolors, brushes, etc. when I spend the day on the Square, just in case I get inspired. All the coffee drinkers made me think of coffee cups. Here’s a drawing I started with watercolor pencils. I’ll show you when I finish it.

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Then, I did my good deed for the day. As I sat outside, I noticed three men talking by their motorcycles. They were parking their bikes on the striped lines next to a handicap parking spot. I have a dear friend,(you know who you are) who got a $400 parking ticket for parking her bike in the very same spot. So, I walked over and informed the three friends about the possible violation. 3 times $400 would have been a costly $1,200 day on the Square. They were very appreciative and moved their motorcycles down the street.

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Now, I’m home watching endless episodes of “Murder She Wrote” on the Hallmark Channel. Oh no! Someone just pushed Jessica down a flight of stairs. Note to self: Never invite Jessica Fletcher over for dinner or visit her in Cabot Cove. Someone always dies, five murders in five hours!

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Friday Friends: Sharing and Pairing

15 Jun

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Photo: sethsnap.wordpress.com
Sharing Seth’s beautiful photo and my original poem. His photos are most inspirational.

Sunlight peeks through emerald trees
Twinkling golden with each breeze
Shadows play along the walk
And echo smiles as people talk
Spring reveals her timeless veil
Upon the earth with colors pale
Rustling leaves dance in the sky
While songbirds chant their sweet reply.

Theme Song Thursday: Something’s Coming

14 Jun

There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.
William Shakespeare

The self-fulfilling prophecy is a statement that alters actions and therefore comes true. For example, a person stating “I’m probably going to have a lousy day,” might alter his actions so that such a prediction is fulfilled by his actions. This may be an unconscious gesture. A person who might espouse a self-fulfilling prophecy in a positive way “I’m going to have a great day,” might act in ways that will actually make this prediction true.
http://www.wisegeek.org

I’ve been listening to my “West Side Story” CD in the car. Of course, I always sing along while I’m driving. One song in particular has resonated strongly with me. I like to think I am an extremely positive person, but when I’m belting out the words to this song, something takes control of my brain, making me believe that something great is going to happen. I wake up every morning and say to myself, “What a wonderful day! I can’t wait to see what happens!” A self-fulfilling prophecy? Perhaps! Try it…you’ll like it!

SOMETHING’S COMING from West Side Story
Could be
Who knows?
There’s something due any day
I will know right away
Soon as it shows
It may come cannonballin’ down through the sky
Gleam in its eye
Bright as a rose!
Who knows?
It’s only just out of reach
Down the block, on a beach
Under a tree
I got a feeling there’s a miracle due
Gonna come true
Coming to me
Could it be?
Yes it could
Something’s coming
Something good
If I can wait
Something’s coming I don’t know what it is
But it is
Gonna be great!
With a click
With a shock
Phone’ll jingle
Door’ll knock
Open the latch!
Something’s coming, don’t know when
But it’s soon
Catch the moon
One handed catch
Around the corner
Or whistling down the river
Come on – deliver
To me
Will it be? Yes it will
Maybe just by holding still
It’ll be there!
Come on, something, come on in
Don’t be shy
Meet a guy
Pull up a chair
The air is hummin’
And something great is coming
Who knows
It’s only just
Out of reach
Down the block, on a beach
Maybe tonight
Maybe tonight…

[ From: http://www.metrolyrics.com/somethings-coming-lyrics-westside-story.html ]

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Wednesday:Words of Wisdom

13 Jun

When we are unable to find tranquility within ourselves, it is useless to seek it elsewhere.
Francois de La Rochefoucauld (1613 – 1680)

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The morning sun added to the already sultry morning. I sat outside with the dogs for only a few minutes before we all decided to slither back inside and enjoy the air conditioning. A cup of green tea and a couple of magazines were calling my name. What better way to start my day!

A leisurely lunch with good friends at Snug on the Square, and a drop in visit at Town Square Buzz made for a fun afternoon. When I got into my car around 3, it was a “little warm” in my car. That was the temporary heat from the sun on the windshield, it was only about 95 degrees in real life. Welcome summer in Texas!

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Now for a relaxing evening watching the Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Bruins. Not!!! Go Hawks!!! No tranquility in this house until the game is over, and a lot of cussin’ if Chicago doesn’t win tonight. So much for words of wisdom! I hope YOU can find inner tranquility. Have a great day!

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Tuesday Tips: Chocolate Covered Cheesecake Bites

12 Jun

When I bake, I always double my recipe. (This is a good tip.) This way, I can put something in the freezer to use in a pinch. Today was a pinch. I made brownies yesterday for our tennis party and didn’t feeling like baking again today for McKinney Creative Community pot luck.

A few weeks ago, I made mini cheesecakes and had extra batter. I baked the batter without a crust and popped it in the freezer. It’s pretty easy to cut when it’s frozen. So, I removed it from the freezer, melted some chocolate chips and poured over the crust. (Tip: next time I’ll cut pieces first, then dip in chocolate.)

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When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you chocolate, lick your fingers.(Best tip ever!)

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More Monday Madness

11 Jun

It’s Monday in McKinney. I got home late last night. Chicago was fun, but it’s always great to be home and sleeping in your own bed. So, now back to my old routine, and “back in the saddle again.” That’s just a figure of speech. Last time I rode a horse was many years ago and I thought I was going to die.

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My crazy, wild and whacky life is what keeps me going, what keeps me happy. I got up early to make brownies for our end of the season tennis party. Yes, I saw another funny face in the brownie mix. This time, there were a few small tomatoes on the counter. Of course, I needed a nose. Maybe a clown face? The red bowl inspired a hat, and the rest is photographic history. When you make brownies, you have to crack a couple eggs and a couple jokes.

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The tennis party was fun. All the gals brought something wonderful to eat, and the day was glorious out on the patio. Thanks, Robin, for your gracious hospitality. I am so blessed to have the greatest friends. Such a lovely talented and tenacious tennis team. (Alliteration fetish.)

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Life is good…ahhhh…back in the saddle!

The depressing thing about tennis is that no matter how good I get, I’ll never be as good as a wall.
Mitch Hedberg