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Thursday:) This Is My Little Town~ McKinney

12 Aug

“I live in my own little world. But its ok, they know me here.” ― Lauren Myrac

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This morning was the first Art Club of McKinney meeting  after our summer break. I love the August meeting because it’s Show and Tell day. Each member or guest introduces themselves, tells what art mediums they use, and brings some examples to talk about. A few of my favorite artist friends…


After our meeting, a large contingent from the meeting went over to The Pantry Restaurant    On the square.for more food and socializing. There’s always a little shopping on the way back to your car.

I always stop at the Visitor’s Center to say hello to Miss Beth. She’s such a sweetie and always has her finger on the pulse of McKinney. If Miss Beth doesn’t know about it…it ain’t happenin’.


This is not a natural stance. I make her pose this way…my open arms request. It’s an inside joke. 

My good friends at Sweet Spot Bakery are always baking up something sweet and special. 


It’s difficult for me to resist a quick stop at the Samaritan Inn Thrift Store on my way home. I generally find several treasures. A beautiful hand painted ceramic plate, two pale pastel purple wine glasses to paint, and a lovely glass candy dish. (My buddy, Miss Bella, looking on in admiration of my bargain hunting skills.)


I stopped to visit my neighbor, Diane, before rounding the corner home. My good friend, Karen, stopped by this evening to drop off her little fishy, Baby. I’m fishy sitting for her for a couple of days. I am the “Pet Whisperer” of McKinney. Dogs, cats, now fish. I’m amazing!


So many friends, so many things to do, this is my little town. I love it here!

“I live in my own little world. But its ok, they know me here.” 

― Lauren Myrac

Oh yes, it was pretty hot here today. It’s Texas…it’s summer…it’s hotter than 

H-E- double hockey sticks.

Monday:) My Momentous Manifesto

12 Jul

“You can live with the lie, but you die with the truth.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukatis

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“A lie is an affront to the soul, as well as an insult to the intelligence of the person to whom one lies.” 
― Judith McNaught

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ONE year ago today, July 11, 2015, I was dancing at my son’s wedding. The mother/son dance was Carole King’s, “Child of Mine.” https://youtu.be/0bDrB47giqs It was the perfect song. I sang in his ear and cried. I’ll always remember that dance. I toasted the happy couple and danced all night. Today is their first wedding anniversary. A day I will always remember. Happy anniversary Joe and Lindsay. 7/11, a lucky day for them.


TWO years ago today, July 11, 2014, I was having a garage sale. I had to pack up nearly 40 years of my life, prepare to leave my home that I loved and lived in for ten years. My husband was already gone, moved out, shacked up with his girlfriend. The divorce almost final, and I was a mess. He left with a handful of clothes, a desk, a bookcase, and moved into a brand new townhouse. He bought all new furniture, appliances, clothes, and threw out all his old junk, including his wife. A day I will always remember. 7/11/14. Not a luck day for me.


THREE years ago today, July 11, 2013, “A day that will live in infamy.” My husband came home drunk again. He said he was having drinks with the guys from the club. I confronted him about his affair with the slut waitress from Craig Ranch TPC. He denied it, said I was crazy, I gave him proof, we fought, he said she meant nothing. I had found all the emails, photos, hotel reservations, texts and more. She wanted my husband, my life, the big house, and a new sugar daddy. She set him up to get caught, all the sneaking around, secret sexual rendezvous, lying, and cheating. He got caught with his pants down. She got her wish. He got what he deserved. He’s stuck with the slut now. A day I will always remember.. 7/11/13. The worst day of my life.


THIS IS MY MANIFESTO, borrowed from Brendon Burchard. 



Today, July 11, 2016, I couldn’t get 7/11 out of my head all day. I went to the doctor for my 6 month check up, went for a walk, talked to some neighbors, tried to take a nap, went for another walk, and tried to get this day out of my head, but I couldn’t. I just called my son to wish him a happy anniversary. This is a new beginning for them. This is a good day for a new beginning for me. It’s been a long hard work in progress. But, they say,  if you proclaim something out loud, put it in writing, and declare it to the world, you can make it happen. I will make it happen. I’ve already started.

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 From now on, this will be a good day. This will be the day that I formally declare, “I simply choose to be happy now, to be grateful now, to be a source of love and light for others. I am whole. I am ready. This is my day.”

7/11/16 THIS IS MY DAY

Tuesday:) Telling Tales and Sharing Dreams 

4 May

You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows that they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift.
~Erin Morgenstern

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I enjoy writing every day, sesrching for something interesting, clever, beautiful or heartwarming to share. In the course of blogging every day, you become friends and followers of other writers with fascinating stories. I know I’ll probably never meet any of these wonderful writers, but I feel we have become friends, as we have opened up our lives, our stories, and our hearts to one another. 

This morning, I started reading a short story that really moved me. The words flowed like a gentle stream, and the story was heartwarming. So much so, that I decided to share this story instead of boring you with my mundane life today.

A story by Kim

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The Bible camp lay down a long dirt road that left our car brown by the time we arrived. We had packed for the week and waited in line, luggage in tow for our cabinet assignments. The scent of the horses was down wind from where we stood but we could hear them neighing and […]

Into the sunset

nature, life, poetry, story, thoughts, self, photo, writing, memories, beauty, human, childhood

https://zipsrid.wordpress.com/2016/05/03/into-the-sunset/

Tuesday:) Toni Tales~True Stories

9 Mar

Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” ― Desmond Tutu

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I generally don’t like to toot my own horn…wait a minute…yes I do! It’s not really tooting, it’s more like sharing warm and uplifting stories from my notebook that I call my life.

Yesterday, I was coming home from my walk, strolling up my driveway, when I saw the mail truck two houses down. I figured I’d just wait a few seconds and grab my mail. I didn’t have quite enough time to run into the house to get a Dr. Pepper or some cookies. Usually, if I see the mail truck close by, I’ll run in and get something for the carrier. They put in a long day, and I like to show my appreciation. Last week, I had time to run and get a Dr. Pepper for the mail lady, a different one, not our usual Miss Penny. I hadn’t seen this lady before. She was on the phone, so I just gave he a wave, and she nodded and mouthed the words thank you. 

So, after putting the mail in the box, she pulled up to my driveway and said, “I wanted to thank you for the Dr. Pepper the other day. I apologize. I was on the phone with my brother in Louisianna, and I didn’t get a chance to thank you properly. That was so nice. I feel bad.” 

We talked a few minutes, and she told me about her family. Her brother rarely calls her, and she needed to talk to him. I asked her where Miss Penny was and she said, Penny got transferred to Fairview, but trained her on the route, and calls her every day to see how it’s going. She said, “I told Penny that this nice lady gave me a Dr. Pepper the other day, and I felt terrible that I didn’t get a chance to thank her.” 

Then, I smiled when she said that Penny told her,”Oh, that’s Toni! She’s always doing nice things. She’d bring me cookies or brownies or something to drink. She’s a real nice lady. You’ll love her.” Well, I was honored that Miss Penny remembered me by name, and that I made her day a little brighter. Now, Miss Desra is my new mail lady, and now she knows my name, too. 

It’s funny how just a small act of kindness or a simple hello, can really make a difference in someone’s day. Do you know your mail carrier’s name, or the guys who mow your lawn, or the cashier at the grocery store? 

  
   
 

Sunday Sermon and Some Sidewalk Sketches

7 Mar

“It’s never too late to say you’re sorry. But first, you  have to say it, then more importantly, you have to mean it. Otherwise, it’s just more lies.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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“You never depart from us, but yet, only with difficulties do we return to You.” 

― Saint Augustine, Confessions

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Today is the Fourth Sunday of Lent. We had a different Gospel at 9 o’clock Mass than all the other Masses, so we didn’t hear the Prodigal Son story. I always liked that one, so I’ll give you my view on it. The prodigal son returns home after taking off, and squandering away his inheritance, while the other son remained home, faithfully working hard for his father. The father rejoiced and prepared a feast for the repentant, starving son, and the good son was mad. So here’s the thing. A father can’t help but love his children. The prodigal son was very sorry, repentant, and knew how wrong he was. There’s the key…he was sorry. Unless you are sorry and repentant, I don’t think you can be forgiven. Just sayin’.

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The Gospel is from St. Luke 15:1-3, 11-32.

 This reading recounts the parable of the Prodigal Son, one of Jesus’ most beautiful parables. It teaches us once more that God is a kind and understanding Father. 

This is what he tells the faithful son…

He said to him,
‘My son, you are here with me always;

everything I have is yours.

But now we must celebrate and rejoice,

because your brother was dead and has come to life again;

he was lost and has been found.’”

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After Mass, I took a two hour walk around the neighborhood. It’s a good time to think. I do a lot of thinking. I do a lot of walking. But, I’m never too contemplative to ignore the beauty along the way. I love when I stumble upon fun things like kids drawing on the sidewalk with chalk. It’s refreshing to see budding artists sharing their masterpieces.

   
   
 
Very talented children. 

  

Fantabulous Friday:) 50, 000 Views and Counting

5 Mar

” I never thought I’d get 500 views on my blog, much less 50,000. Now, I believe anything is possible.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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“What the mind can conceive and believe, and the heart desire, you can achieve.” ― Norman Vincent Peale

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My goal when I first started writing my blog on January 1, 2013 was to see if I could write a blog every day for one entire. Well, I haven’t missed a day yet, more than three years later, I haven’t run out of things to say. Blog writing is like a drug. Once you start, you get hooked and can’t stop. 1,168 consecutive posts, hundreds of followers, this is what writing is all about.

I’ve made many interesting friends along the way. People that I probably will never meet, but I’ve become a part of their lives, and they have become a part of mine. It’s a very interesting world out there if you take the time to open your eyes.

I thought a few weeks ago that I was  getting very near to a landmark 50,000 views, but I thought I had a long way to go. When I looked yesterday at my stats, I found that I had already passed that magic number. Amazing!!! I am proud and honored and humbled and excited, all rolled into one bundle of ecstatic achievement. Thank you for reading., looking at all the goofy pictures, and not laughing too hard at me.Thank you for being a part of my life and my journey.

   
 Is this cool or what??????? Try and stop me from writing now! 

  

Wednesday:) Why, What’s That On Your Head?

11 Feb

“All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one’s heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.” 

― Cormac McCarthy, The Road

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Today is Ash Wednesday, the first day of lent. A day that we literally wear our hearts on our sleeves, or more like on our foreheads. A day to think about mortality, about what is really important in life. When I knelt to pray, I once again gave thanks and asked for continued strength. I prayed, “Change my heart.”  This made me think of one of my favorite hymns, “Change our hearts.” Well, guess what was the opening hymn. Yep, “Change our hearts.” This happened to me once before, over a year ago, and I sang and I cried. Today, I sang and I smiled. I smiled because my heart is changing. The pain of betrayal and anger is still there in my heart, but it’s softer now. A tiny bit softer. 

When I was at church with everyone else, it wasn’t unusual, but after Mass this morning, I needed to stop at the bank and the grocery store. At the store, I totally forgot I had ashes on my head because, well, I didn’t see myself. But, when people gave me a strange look, or a double take, then I remembered. At the bank, Independent Bank on Virginia, the girls there all know me. They just said, “Hi, Miss Toni. You just come from church?” I don’t even need to show a card or punch a code, they just type my name in on their screen, and take care of my transactions. That’s what I love about my town.

(AN EXPLANATION OF ASH WEDNEDSAY CATHOLIC TRADITION:)

St. Anthony Messenger

By Susan Hines-Brigger

Ashes to Ashes

If there ever is a day of the year when you can spot Catholics at a glance, Ash Wednesday is it. It is the one time when Catholics literally wear their faith on their foreheads. In fact, Masses on Ash Wednesday are better attended than Masses on most holy days, except Christmas.

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent for Catholics. The ashes we receive on our forehead in the shape of a cross serve as an outward sign of our sinfulness and need for penance. The ashes also symbolize our mortality, a reminder that one day we will die and our bodies will return to dust. Hence the traditional words, remember that thou art dust and unto dust thou shalt return.
The tradition of receiving ashes has its origins in the Old Testament, where sinners performed acts of public penance. It was Pope Urban II who in the 11th century recommended that all Catholics take part in the practice of receiving ashes on Ash Wednesday. In the 12th century it became customary that the ashes used on Ash Wednesday were made by burning the previous year’s palm branches.

Ash Wednesday is also a day of fasting and abstinence for Catholics. According to Church law, Catholics older than the age of 14 are supposed to abstain from meat. In addition, those between the ages of 18 and 59, not including pregnant or nursing mothers, should eat only one full meal. Smaller amounts of food�not as much as a full meal�may be eaten in the morning and either at lunchtime or dinner, depending on when you eat your full meal.