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Sunday Service, Snug on the Square, Santa and Scrumptious Cookies

16 Dec

When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.
Mahatma Gandhi
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Starting out with an inspirational Sunday service was a great way to begin my day. Then, I scooted off to the Square to meet some friends for breakfast at Snug. Well, I didn’t eat, but had some iced tea. Just not too hungry these days. But, being able to laugh and spend times with friends is always wonderful.

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I stopped over at Sweet Spot bakery to pick up a hot chocolate before heading over to the DFW Toys for Tots Motorcycle Run at Freedom Power Sports in McKinney. Mr. And Mrs. Santa chatted with David Marks, co-founder of the annual event, before the 47 mile run. Many toys and donations were collected.

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Did I mention there were handsome, charming Marines collecting toys?

Just when I thought my day couldn’t get better, my friend Blynda had invited friends to a family
cookie tasting challenge at her home. Tasting cookies…say no more! I ran into some old friends and made some new friends.
The cookies were scrumptious and endless.

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Now, doesn’t that sound like a perfect Sunday?

Friday: Friends, Feasts and Firemen

14 Dec

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turn what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, chaos into clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.
Melody Beattie
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Let’s start with the firemen. Yesterday, I stopped at Station #5 to drop off my annual hand-painted ornament. This should be the 9th one now. They didn’t have their tree up yet, so it didn’t get to adorn the tree. But, I’ll be back when I do my massive cookie baking next week, (I hope) and get a picture. Captain Steve answered the door when I stopped by and when I asked to take a photo for my blog! he said, “Let’s go out by the truck.” Thanks Captain Steve.

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Today, we celebrated miss Eleanor’s birthday at Towne. The sweet ladies at the Art Club of McKinney let me take the left over food from our Thursday luncheon to take over to our senior art group. Thus, we had a feast on Friday, compliments of my Thursday friends. So cool to have friends everywhere. Especially friends who share.

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Now, here’s a fun little photo. Miss Nelma was working on painting a candle for her Christmas cards. She was working on painting the flame and double-loading her brush. When I looked over at her palette of paint, I noticed an interesting shape that formed when the red had been dipped in the gold. I had to get a photo. It was a happy little accident.

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Theme Song Thursday: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

13 Dec

Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy is to have the real spirit of Christmas.
Calvin Coolidge
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Today, the Art Club of McKinney had their annual Christmas luncheon at the heard-Craig Gallery. We were serenaded by the fabulous McKinney High School Harmony Group.They were amazing.

We were so inspired by the young voices that we had our own little sing-a-long after our ornament exchange and before our wonderful meal.


OK, we are bad singers, but we have a real good time. I was the lucky recipient of a beautiful ornament made from watercolor painted shaped flowers. Forgive me, I forgot the name of the charming and talented artist that created it, but here she is. She said it took her over ten hours to create.

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Then, the “TOTS,” Table Of Talent Sisters, met at Snug on the Square to celebrate Gail’s, Lynne H.’s, and Della’s birthday. What a busy December! Isn’t it grand? Life is good!

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Tuesday:Tips, Tasty Treats and Time Travel

10 Dec

The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.
Abraham Lincoln
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FINALLY! Most of the ice has melted from the roads, and my weather inflicted exile is at an end. Four days of housebound insanity with endless-mindless television and cups and cups of hot tea. But alas, the sun came out this morning…oops…almost found myself bursting into song. “The sun will come out tomorrow…” I threw on my gym shoes and exercise clothes and headed to the YMCA for the 8:30 Zumba class. I knew it didn’t look good when only five or six cars were in the parking lot. My friends Karen, Mercedes and Mary Beth arrived and were equally disappointed.

So, instead of drooping our heads and going home, we went into the back yoga room, I plugged my iPhone into the mini-boom box, and Mary Beth led us in some exercise and Zumba alternatives. (It kinda looked like geriatric Zumba.) After an hour of giggling and wiggling, we drove over to Market Street to get some coffee. It was fabulous to be able to leave the house, drive on the street and see other human beings again. I was delighted.

Later, I went to the post office to mail a couple packages. Tip #1: during the holidays, you must be patient when waiting in long lines. Thus the the term, “Going Postal.” I passed the time away by chatting with the lady in front of me for about twenty minutes.

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Then, I came home to bake my brownies for our McKinney creative Community gathering. Tip #2: Tasty treats are more fun when you make funny faces first.

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Last but not least: Time travel. Well, I didn’t go back in time or into the future, but being cooped up for so long made me appreciate every little moment of time I get to spend with friends and going places. I will never take it for granted again. Well, maybe until it gets to be too hot, 105 degrees and I refuse to leave the house.

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Montage Monday: A Chilly Week in a Peek

9 Dec

Weather forecast for tonight: dark. ~George Carlin
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We had a weather week from “The Twilight Zone.” One day it was 78 degrees and the next, I was looking for my ice scraper. Crazy! I’ve been sitting in the house for four days, going stir crazy. If it’s not better by morning, I’m gonna put on my skates and bust outa here. Just kidding…I don’t own any skates.

A week in a peek…cold and bleak…frozen creek…

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Wednesday Words of Wisdom

5 Dec

Caroling, caroling through the snow. Christmas bells are ringing. Joyous voices sweet and clear, sing the sad of heart to cheer.
-Nat King Cole Caroling, Caroling
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Music is the shorthand of emotion.
Leo Tolstoy
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The Fairmont Hotel in Dallas was offering a Christmas Caroling Series this week. Karen, Mercedes and I enjoyed the beautiful music and the ambience of the delightfully decorated hotel. Today’s performance was provided by the DFW Actors Give Back.

The wonderful thing about music and singing is, your spirits are lifted and your day is brightened. Christmas songs remind us of happier days, family and friends. Words of wisdom for the holidays… Honor Christmas in your heart.
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I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. – Charles Dickens

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Tuesday: To Tree, or Not to Tree, That is the Question.

4 Dec

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful. ”
― Norman Vincent Peale
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I couldn’t decide whether to put up my Christmas tree this year. It’s been a very challenging year and I’m not feeling too festive these days. It’s not a big, elaborate tree, but it has special meaning. So, I decided to take the plunge. My dear friends, the TOTS- Table of Talent Sisters- collaborated a few years ago to decorate a tabletop tree for a high school fundraiser. Everyone made dozens of beautiful handmade ornaments. We ended up buying our own tree and dividing up the ornaments. I was the lucky one who got to keep the actual tree. Every year, I’ve added more handmade ornaments made by friends. I call it my TOTS tree. Yes, I needed my tree!
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To tree or not to tree, that is the question:
Whether ’tis Nobler in the mind to suffer
The Glitz and Glitter of outrageous Fortune,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of decorations
And by opposing end them: to tinsel, to sleep
No more; and by a sleep, to say we end
The Heart-ache, and the thousand Chocolate chip cookies
That Flesh is heir to? ‘Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To bake, to sleep,
To sleep, perchance to Dream; (Visions of sugarplums) Aye, there’s the rub,…

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Montage Monday: a Week in a Peek

3 Dec

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
Harriet Tubman
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From Thanksgiving to giving thanks, from Home for the Holidays on the Square to just staying home, here is a week in a peek.

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Saturday on the Square: Home for the Holidays

1 Dec

Christmas waves a magic wand over the world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.
Norman Vincent Peale
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Downtown McKinney celebrated Home for the Holidays this weekend. There were train rides for the children, live entertainment, skating, food and art vendors, and a gorgeous carousel. Of course, Santa was on hand for photos and to listen to the requests of the children for Christmas morning. Even the Grinch who stole Christmas was in a good mood. It was a fabulous Fall day on the Square.

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Santa was the star of the show.

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Chris and I sang, “You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch,” but this was a penitent Grinch. Very friendly.

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Miss Jan and Miss Lynda dressed in old-time costumes represented Imaging on the Square and the Art Club of McKinney. Lovely hand-made costumes.

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The charming carousel sparkled in the afternoon sun.

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A cup of hot tea and an ooey-gooey bar at Sweet Spot bakery ended the visit and a spectacular sunset guided our way home.

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Wednesday: Welcome To My World

21 Nov

I try to apply colors like words that shape poems, like notes that shape music.
Joan Miro
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My world is filled with colors and words. What a lovely world to live in!

Just a quick glance at my studio, or “crap room” as I like to call it.

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What’s your world like?