Archive | August, 2018

Friday:) Friends, Funny Faces and More Friendly Firemen

11 Aug

Friends are like walls, sometimes you lean on them and sometimes it’s good just knowing they’re there.


Finally, some rain and relief from the summer heat. I was able to get a nice walk in this morning without the sun baking my skin. Ah, clouds! I love clouds. Then, I had a lunch date with my neighbor, Diane, to celebrate her birthday. We’ve been friends since I moved to my new house four years ago. We look out for each other. That’s what friends are for.

On our way to lunch, we stopped at Fire Station 9 to take some brownies and some of Miss Pat’s cookies. Miss Pat gave me a bunch of cookies to share with our local firemen. She’s such a great baker. We call her the Cookie Lady.

No, we weren’t drinking. This is an old picture. I just wanted to share a picture of sweet Miss Pat.

The guys over at Station 9 appreciated the cookies and brownies. They were just about to have lunch, so dessert was just in time.

Miss Pat’s awesome cookies. Oh, yesterday was karaoke at the VFW, and that’s when she gave me the cookies. I love my karaoke friends. We sing and dance and laugh, and the second Thursday of the month, we have a potluck dinner, so good food.

I have been blessed with so many good friends. Oh, and I’ve been blessed with a weird sense of looking at the world, too.

When I went for my evening walk, I couldn’t help but think of all the wonderful friends and people in my life. Then, I saw a possible face on one of the sprinkler covers in the grass by the pond. With a little imagination and nearby natural embellishment, I created a funny face. Another friendly face in my world.



9 Aug

“Art is standing with one hand extended into the universe and one hand extended into the world, and letting ourselves be a conduit for passing energy.”

~ Albert Einstein


This morning was our first Art Club of McKinney monthly meeting after our summer break. We are very proud to be the oldest continuing art club in the state of Texas. Way back, in the day, members had to be invited artists, and their possible membership was voted on by the members. Today, anyone and everyone is welcome to join or just visit the group. All are welcome. You don’t have to be an artist, or even a student of art. You just need to enjoy friendship, camaraderie, and learning and sharing wonderful art.

The first meeting of the season is my favorite. I like to call it “show and tell.” Members are asked to bring a few examples of their art and talk a little bit about their work.

So, I’m just going to “show and tell” with some photos from this morning…

Now, a few of my artistic friends…

I’m sure you can see that we have quite a talented community of artists. Come join us sometime and share in the fun.

Wednesday:) Words of Wisdom From the Heart

9 Aug

“I think it’s important to have a dream and to follow your heart.”

~Austin Butler


This afternoon, I decided to go for a walk. The clouds and a little breeze brought a brief relief from the scorching summer Texas heat. As I walked, I remembered the many times that I would notice so many heart-shaped symbols on the sidewalk or in the street. I was trying to think of what to write today for my Wednesday blog, so I decided to take pictures of the dozens of heart shapes that I normally came across on my walk. I like to think of it as “following my heart.”

Wouldn’t you know it, the more I searched for them, the fewer I found. I smiled to myself. I thought, isn’t ironic? It’s just like in real life. The heart ❤️ is a symbol for love. The harder you look for love or a heart ❤️, the more difficult it is to find.

I did find a few, but instead of twenty or thirty, I only found six today. The more I searched, the fewer I found. My personal advice… just stop desperately searching for ❤️, because the harder you look, the less you find. The best things happen when you’re not looking.

My hearts ❤️ I found today.

Follow your heart.

Tuesday:) Toni Taking Tasty Treats To My Terrific Friends

8 Aug

“There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.”

Jane Austen


I’m sure you all know by now that I love to bake, and I love to share with friends and neighbors. I usually try to give away all but one or two of my sweet concoctions to avoid personal temptation.

My last baking marathon Saturday was my mini cupcake baking frenzy. I can best describe it with visuals.

Chocolate cherry.

Lemon with lemon pudding filling.

Cream cheese frosting with my 43 year old harvest gold General Electric mixer.

All done and ready to share.

First stop, Fire Station 9. No one answered the hall phone, so I walked to the back bay doors. Captain Turner said they were trying. He said, “Thank you. That’s so nice. I’m going to give my trainee who’s back there rolling up hoses and extra cupcake.”

I stopped over at a couple of neighbors’ houses with small plates. No photo op.

Next stop…My good friend Karri over at Papa Murphy’s Pizza.

Saving the best for last…my dear friend Sherri Murphy and family. Not only did I share, but I was invited to stay for dinner and we had pizza and pasta. Win-win!

I love to bake. I love to share. I love my friends.

Montage Monday:) A Week in a Peek

7 Aug

“I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often.”

~Brian Tracy


Another fun busy week.

A week in a perk…..

Sunday Sermon and Other Stuff

5 Aug

“God gives us the ingredients for our daily bread, but he expects us to do the baking!”

~Chip Ingram


Another fine Sunday, hot as usual, but always nice to see friends at Mass. a lot of hugs this morning. Many of my CRHP sisters were at Mass and going to brunch afterwards. I had a very beautiful memorial service to attend and wouldn’t miss it for the world.

Today’s Gospel was about Jesus telling His followers that God was the true bread of life, and just as He sent down manna from heaven to the Israelites, He will sustain us in our need.


JN 6:24-35……

“Amen, amen, I say to you,

you are looking for me not because you saw signs

but because you ate the loaves and were filled.

Do not work for food that perishes

but for the food that endures for eternal life,

which the Son of Man will give you.

For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.” ….

So they said to him,

“Sir, give us this bread always.”

Jesus said to them,

“I am the bread of life;

whoever comes to me will never hunger,

and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”


My take on it… It’s true, man does not live by bread alone. I love the quote above. God gives us the ingredients, we have to do our own baking. I like that! I like to bake. I like to bake more than cookies and brownies and cupcakes. I like to take the ingredients God gave me, and make friends and relationships, nourishing both body and spirit.

Yesterday, I took a few cupcakes over to my friend Karri over at Papa Murphy’s Pizza. I usually stop I. At least once a week for a hug, a friendly smile and a chat. She had mentioned something about wanting to stop at the bakery for cupcakes when we were talking baking. I told her next time I made some, I’d bring some by. She was pleased and I was excited to share my baking talents. Man does not live by pizza alone… although I probably could.

When I got back to my car, look what was waiting for me right by the driver’s side. Yep! A lucky feather.

I didn’t notice it when I got out of my car. Hmm?

Saturday:) Some Talented Artist You Should Know

4 Aug

“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work.”

Émile Zola


McKinney has a marvelous artist community, and pretty much every artist knows the other. You know why? Because this very supportive, close-knit community rallies together, shares their time and talent, and loves one another like family.

This weekend, there is another great art exhibit at The Cove, an innovative gallery/cooperative located at 402 N. Tennessee, just north of the downtown Square. I visited last night after volunteering at Towne Creek, so I was already in an artistic frame of mind.

My very talented friends Jeni Tomlinson and Cate Robbins are features in an exhibit called H.I.T. Show…Hanging In There. The subject are mainly loose works on paper, very creatively displayed and best of all, very affordable. If you are a collector of local artist’s work, this is a great show to visit. (I picked up a little something of Cate’s that appealed to me.

Jeni Tomlinson’s work is just luscious. She paints in all mediums, watercolor, oils, acrylics, and also she and her husband Charlie work wonders restoring old furniture, making it come to life anew.

Cage Robbins has mastered the art of hand-made paper, and cleverly creates collages of expressive pieces.

And look how clever the hanging of her work is displayed. Artists just have a different way of looking at things, and aren’t we lucky that they do? What a dull milk-toast world we would have without the artists.

The show is going on tonight from 3-9 p.m., so you still have a chance to scoot over there and check it out.

Friday Friends, Fine Art and Fun Food

4 Aug

“Old age may have its limitations and challenges, but in spite of them, our latter years can be some of the most rewarding and fulfilling of our lives.”

~Billy Graham


Today was my first Friday visit with my senior artist friends at Towne Creek Apartments. My car was filled to the brim with donations from my friends and neighbors for their upcoming auction. When I stopped at Mr. Mike’s this afternoon to pick up my ice cream and pizza, ( he stores my extra frozen food in his freezer because mine is jammed) I told him about the auction and he gave me a bunch of paintings, art work and a really nice big metal clock. Kelly, the director was overwhelmed with the generosity of my friends.

It was wonderful to see Miss Nelma. She has been very ill and wasn’t sure if she’d be able to come down to join us, but her care giver, Miss Patsy, helped her come down with her heavy oxygen machine. We started out with chatting and root beer floats. Then, I put the pizza in the oven, cooked the hot dogs, and poured out the Doritos. There were donuts and danish for dessert. We all held hands while Miss Nelma led us in a prayer of thanks, and then we had our feast.

For our art project, I told them the idea of making special cards to share with people who are sick or depressed or sad. I had seen a video on YouTube where people anonymously slipped notes of encouragement or kind words to people in need of smile. What a great project idea for our group. There are so many lonely, sad or ill people right there at Towne Creek. They loved the idea.

We used chalk, colored pencils, markers, stencils and stamps to create the cards. My favorite mantra is

“You are amazing,” so that was a good quote to start with. We put a saying on one side and art on the other side.

They loved the idea. While they worked on their project, I went up to Miss Kathy’s apartment. I saw her when I arrived. She had just come from the doctor and was resting in the hall until she gathered enough energy to go upstairs. Poor Miss Kathy loves our art time, but said she was exhausted and wouldn’t join us, so I took up a card and a little gift. She didn’t answer the knock on the door, so I just slipped in and left the gift by the door. She’ll feel loved when she sees it.

The ladies had fun and did a great job,

Miss Nelma’s cards.

Miss Bonnie. Look at that smile.

Miss Connie.

Another fine Friday with my senior friends at Towne Creek. They always thank me profusely for my visit, when in fact, I am the one who is blessed. With age comes wisdom.

Theme Song Thursday:) That’s what friends are for

3 Aug

“I think if I’ve learned anything about friendship, it’s to hang in, stay connected, fight for them, and let them fight for you. Don’t walk away, don’t be distracted, don’t be too busy or tired, don’t take them for granted. Friends are part of the glue that holds life and faith together. Powerful stuff.”

~ Jon Katz


I truly have the best friends in the world. Last week I mentioned to a few friends that I was collecting donations for my dear friends over at Towne Creek Senior Apartments. I’ve been volunteering there, teaching arts and crafts for nearly 11 years now. The directors decided to come up with an incentive plan to get some of the more sedentary and isolated seniors out of their tiny apartments, and down to the community room to join in some of the activities. So, Christy and Kelly are promoting participation by handing out play money to the residence, and in September, they will have an auction, where they can purchase items. What a clever idea!

Many friends have offered to donate, but Miss Pat and the gals from karaoke and Single Mingle came through right away with all kinds of fun gifts, beautiful jewelry, scarves, soaps, holiday items, etc. I’ll show you just some of the cute things they’ve donated.

I put together a little spa basket with a few fun items, and I’ll have to find some cute gift bags and boxes for all the pins, belts, earrings, etc.

Don’t I have the best, kindest, most generous friends! And there’s more coming in.

Thanks everyone!!!

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Good Lookin’?

1 Aug

“When everything looks unusual around you, your eyes and your mind mostly need anything usual! Unfamiliar disturbs us; familiar comforts us! But for the wise man, unusual is more precious than the usual because it offers us a new way, a new vision, a new idea, a new world!”

Mehmet Murat ildan


If it isn’t a couple of pans of marshmallow brownies, or 144 mini cupcakes taking turns in and out of the oven, well it must be something unusual. Unusual for the average person, but not for the weird artist type person.

Yep, another dozen wine glasses just finished baking at 350 for 30 minutes. Doesn’t everyone bake hand-painted wine glasses every now and then? No? Funny, it’s a very common event in my kitchen. You can’t eat them, but you can drink from them, and their so darn pretty.

Creating, painting, baking, and just doing unusual things makes me smile.

I’ll be painting more and posting more. Stay tuned…