Archive | November, 2014

Some More Saturday on the Square: Home for the HolidaysPart II

30 Nov

“Music is the great uniter. An incredible force. Something that people who differ on everything and anything else can have in common.”
― Sarah Dessen, Just Listen
Today was even more gorgeous than yesterday. After a long morning walk, an even longer chat with my neighbor, Kathy, across the street, I went back to the Square for the second day of Home for the Holidays. It was actually t-shirt weather in the afternoon. I had so many “Likes” on my Facebook page for my picture with the Grinch, that I took another picture today.

Oh yes, I stopped at SPARC for their open house, where Steve Macias was demonstrating some pottery making techniques. I also had the pleasure of bumping into his parents joe and Virginia.

Here are a few more sights and sounds from my adventures.



The streets were filled with families, couples, children running around and giggling, but there were also plenty of handsome men in blue, firemen and policemen, keeping everyone safe. The handsome young officer in the middle is Officer Wilkerson. I went to his and Mandy’s wedding just a couple of months ago. Small world.

Then, there was plenty of music all around the Square. Miss Kathy over at Sweet Spot sang some beautiful Christmas songs. She sings like an angel.

On my way back to my car, I sauntered past the band stand and had to stop to enjoy the music, take a few videos and tap my toes.

A very nice way to start off the holidays in McKinney.

Friday Night Lights and Festivities

29 Nov

“The holidays drape us in magic and give us the hope that we can do better than we have done in the past
~Toni Sorenson
McKinney was hosting their Home For the Holidays festivities this weekend. The Square was teeming with visitors. I had to drive around quite a while to find a place to park. A nice long walk around the busy streets packed with people, kids and strollers. After snapping a lot of pictures, I took a break at Sweet Spot for a double scoop of ice cream,

After visiting with my friend, the Grinch, I found a comfy seat inside Sweet Spot and did a lot of people watching until the tree lighting ceremony at 6pm. The weather was cool, yet perfect for that holiday feeling.

I’ve never seen so many people on the Square. I had a chance to chat with Mayor Brian Loughmiller and his wife, Donna. That’s what I love about McKinney, everyone knows everyone.

I was standing right in front of the Christmas tree for the lighting. Perfect photo op position.

It was a beautiful evening. The holidays begin!


Thankful Thursday:Happy Thanksgiving

28 Nov

“Those blessings are sweetest that are won with prayer and worn with thanks.”
― Thomas Goodwin
Today is Thanksgiving, a day we set aside to be thankful for our blessings, our families, and our friends. I try to be thankful every day, but it’s nice that we set aside a special day every year, make it a national holiday, and force people to eat massive quantities of turkey, dressing and pumpkin pie. Just kidding. I don’t think anyone is forced.

I spent the day talking to friends and family on the phone and took a couple of walks. It was such a beautiful sunny day, it was a shame not to take advantage of it. Old man winter is not far behind. My special holiday meal was a big bowl of Greek yogurt with apples, bananas, and granola. Not as yummy as my usual Snug on the Square yogurt parfait, but pretty close.

So, here are some cool pics of what I see every day on my walks. You can see why I am thankful for my new house, new friends, and new neighborhood.

The horses were enjoying their Thanksgiving meal.

This little pond and fountain is a favorite spot to visit.

One of my little duck friends was quacking and taking a swim.

I started out my day the way I’ll end my day, talking to friends and family, writing, sipping a cup of tea, and being thankful.


Wednesday : Watercolors Created By Nature

27 Nov

No form of Nature is inferior to Art; for the arts merely imitate natural forms
~Marcus Aurelius quotes
My morning walk was more like a walking art show. The colorful moist leaves had created beautiful stains on the concrete sidewalks. They were as intricate and fascinating as a detailed watercolor. Nature…God’s artistic canvas. I couldn’t have painted it any better myself. Oh, that’s right, the original artist is a little more talented than I am.




Aren’t these beautiful? I just may have to try and paint these someday.


Tuesday: Tall Shadows and Two Sunsets

26 Nov

The brightest flame casts the darkest shadow.”
― George R.R. Martin, A Clash of Kings
I started off the day with my 8:30 Zumba class. After that, I’m pumped for the rest of the day. Exhililerating! Breakfast at Snug on the Square, visit friends at Sweet Spot Bakery, home for a long walk, a couple of hours of serious painting of ornaments, another long walk. On my final walk, I was mesmerized by my long, tall shadow. Photo op!

I’m not really ten feet tall. Well, maybe I am.

When I walked in the door, more interesting shadows on the wall. Snap, snap.


Now, here are the two sunsets. Always breathtaking.




The brightest flame casts the darkest shadow.”
― George R.R. Martin, A Clash of Kings

Montage Monday: A Week in a Peek

25 Nov

“So. Monday. We meet again.

We will never be friends—but maybe we can move past our mutual enmity toward a more-positive partnership.”
― Julio Alexi Genao
The days fly by like leaves in a tornado. Keeping busy is my mantra. Hmmm!

A week in a whirlwind peek.

Monday, again?


Sunday Sermon, Some New Friends, and Sunny Skies

23 Nov

“A man should not be judged by his fame, power, or money, but rather by how much love he gives to others.”
― Sandranil Biswas
Today’s Gospel was about how kindnesses we have done for others, is the same as if we did those things for The Lord. Then at our final judgement, He will chose the righteous on His right side and punish the wicked on His left.

I rather be a good person and be kind to others, not for the fear of punishment or hopes of a reward, but rather because it’s the right thing to do and it makes me feel good. I like that old quote, “When I die, I’d rather be a good person and find out there is no heaven, than be a bad person and find out there is.”

Gospel MT 25:31-46
…For I was hungry and you gave me food,
I was thirsty and you gave me drink,
a stranger and you welcomed me,
naked and you clothed me,
ill and you cared for me,
in prison and you visited me.’
Then the righteous will answer him and say,
‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you,
or thirsty and give you drink?
When did we see you a stranger and welcome you,
or naked and clothe you?
When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’
And the king will say to them in reply,
‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did
for one of the least brothers of mine, you did for me.’
After Mass, the Knights of Columbus group at St. Gabriel’s was hosting a pancake breakfast. I’ve been wanting to sit and visit with my new friends Virginia and Joe, and this was a perfect opportunity to have a cup of coffee and chat a while. They are the nicest couple, and we usually just say hello or wave after Mass, so it was nice to sit and share a meal and some time with them.


When I got home, it was soooo gorgeous and sunny out, (gloomy and rainy all day yesterday) that I changed and went for a two hour walk, enjoying the sun on my face and the beautiful skies overhead. (T-shirt weather)


Aren’t those amazing?



Saturday:Special Sisters and Such

23 Nov

A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life. ~Isadora James

Sisters are a special blessing. Growing up, sisters are like friends that sleep over and don’t have to go home before dark. You play school, store, and restaurant, not to mention Monopoly marathons. Well, sometimes it’s like that, sometimes not. But, I remember those things.

If you weren’t blessed with actual blood line sisters, your best friends can become sisters. I’ve been blessed with both. I can’t even count all the wonderful women who have come into my life and I can consider a sister. I would do anything for them and they would do the same.

I had a few “sisters” over last night to see my new house and have a few snacks. I called it “Chocolate and Cheap Wine.” I served my infamous chocolate ice cream Black Russians, brownies, cheap wine, and snacks.



After everyone went home, I just piled the dishes in the sink to soak. This afternoon. Liz and Mandy insisted on coming over to help me clean up and eat up a few left overs. No Black Russians though, it was only noon. Darn!


I love my sisters!!!


Furious Friday

22 Nov

“Treasure the wisdom of old age.
Learn from elder people and be wise.”
― Lailah Gifty Akita
When I checked my email today, I saw this letter from the Social Services Director at Towne Creek where I volunteer. I was outraged. Our seniors are neglected, disrespected, and taken for granted. What can we do? This can happen to our loved ones. This could happen to us!

Mary is 92 and was told this week would be her last ride on the TAPS McKinney Fixed Routes. Mary lives independently at Towne Creek Apartments and has no family. She uses the TAPS to do her grocery shopping, errands and visits to the McKinney Senior Recreation Center. As of Monday, November 24th, she will have to depend on friends for transportation. Juanita is 97. She uses TAPS two to three times a week to visit the McKinney Senior Center to stay active since her son works during the day. These are only two of the lives that independence will be diminished at Towne Creek Apartments.

Residents at Towne Creek Apartments, a Retirement Housing Foundation Community, located at 506 S. Graves Street in McKinney just found out that they will not be on the TAPS McKinney Fixed Route any longer. Seniors have used the TAPS Route 100 since the inception of the McKinney City Routes.

Towne Creek is the only subsidized housing in McKinney for low-income senior citizens who are 62 years of age or older and/or those who are 18 years and older who are mobility impaired. (Subsidized under the HUD 202/8 program.)

The average age of residents who reside at Towne Creek living independently is 76 years old. Two of the residents who use TAPS most frequently are over 92 years old. 71% of our elderly residents are frail and at risk. We were told by TAPS that our residents could catch the bus at the stop which is 5 blocks away on Virginia (in front of the First Baptist Church). What adds further to the difficulty is that there are no sidewalks between our building on S. Graves and Rockhill, so seniors will have to use the street with their walkers and wheelchairs.

For most of our senior residents TAPS is the only means of transportation and they depend on this transportation everyday. The City Route affords these seniors transportation at no cost to go to the grocery store, pharmacy, senior center, etc. The average annual income of residents is $12,300.00. Without the City Route, the seniors would have to use the Demand Response which will cost $1.00 each way, but $2.00 could mean not be able to get their prescription; $10.00 could mean less for groceries; $40.00 could mean not being able to pay their electric bill.

On behalf of residents Towne Creek Apartments, staff has been in contact with TAPS representatives since this summer when the announcement of proposed changes was made. Staff has been told on numerous occasions that no changes would be made to Route 100. Towne Creek had a community Health Fair on October 2, 2014 where TAPS was a vendor present. No information of the change was given to the residents or staff. TAPS representatives made an education presentation at Towne Creek on October 21, 2014 and again no word on the changes coming. In fact, on the day of the presentation, TAPS representative provided Towne Creek with a flyer showing the daily times of the Route 100 stops at Towne Creek. After information was requested again last week, the only changes to the Route that Towne Creek staff was informed of was that TAPS would be extending the hours of operation of the routes from 5 am – 10 pm, not that the routes would no longer run down South Graves.

No advance notification has been given to Towne Creek Apartments residents. Residents who rode the TAPS bus this week were told the news by TAPS drivers. Not only is this change detrimental to the financial well-being of the residents of Towne Creek, but also the independence of said residents. The ability to continue to live independently is of utmost importance in maintaining a quality of life. One of the greatest aspects of moving to Towne Creek Apartments has been the access of public transportation weekly.

Please reconsider the route change.

Christy Sadler
Social Services Coordinator


Theme Song Thursday:Stormy Weather

21 Nov

“When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”
― Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore
It was a beautiful day today. But, a storm is on the way. Here is the calm before the storm.

A beautiful sunset on my evening walk.

Here are the clouds rolling in. We can use the rain, for sure.

Don’t know why there’s no sun up in the sky…stormy weather. A classic.

Waiting to come out of the storm.