Tag Archives: family

Montage Monday:) A Week in a Peek

13 Sep

“Don’t count the days. Make the days count.”

~Muhammad Ali.


It’s Monday already. I’m not counting the days, but they sure do fly by like a sticky fingered kid in a candy store. Zoom! Flew by…

A week in a zippy-zappy Peek…

Feeling blessed.

Throwback Thursday:) Isn’t Life Grand!

27 Aug

Perfect happiness is a beautiful sunset, the giggle of a grandchild, the first snowfall. It’s the little things that make happy moments, not the grand events. Joy comes in sips, not gulps.

Sharon Draper


I love this quote. It sounds like something I would write. I guess Miss Sharon beat me to it. It’s been a nostalgic week, looking back at old photos and videos.

Mom had the greatest time visiting Station 5.
This grandma loves her babies.
Weddings are so special.
Final weeks and fond memories.
Oh, and the sunsets…

Montage Monday:). A Week in a Peek and a Flashback

24 Aug

“It happens to everyone as they grow up. You find out who you are and what you want, and then you realize that people you’ve known forever don’t see things the way you do. So you keep the wonderful memories, but find yourself moving on.”
― Nicholas Sparks


Today is the 7th anniversary of the day I moved into my new house. August 23rd, was also the day that I got married in 1975. The marriage didn’t last, even though 39 years is a long time for someone to decide, “Gee, I’m just not happy. We got married too young.” Ya think that would have come up in 39 years? But, as is my good fortune, I landed on my feet, moved into my brand new house, and started my new life. One of my miracle days. I have to say, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

Here’s a week in a peek… and a flashback….

Another great week. Also, 364 weeks in my beautiful house and my wonderful life.
On this day in 1975. A flashback memory. No regrets, just a wonderful future ahead, ( This photo memory greeted me on Facebook this morning. 🤦‍♀️)

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

9 Aug

“If bread is the first necessity of life, recreation is a close second.”
Author: Edward Bellamy


Another steamy Sunday here in Texas, and it looks like upper 90’s all week. Yikes! Thank God for air conditioning. (I do.) “Thank You for air conditioning in my home, in my car, in church, and the grocery store afterwards.” That’s a good Sunday prayer.

Today’s Gospel is the story of Jesus being questioned because He said He was the bread of life who came down from heaven, and the people only knew Him as the the son of Mary and Jospeh.

”I am the living bread which has come down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live for ever; and the bread that I shall give is my flesh, for the life of the world.”

My take on it… there’s more to life than just what you see with your eyes, or hear or taste. There is more to nourish your soul than just food for your body. Jesus gave His life for the world. The least we can do is be kind and love one another, and follow in His teachings and in His footsteps.


After Mass, I stopped for coffee and a chat with Helene and Bonita at Tom Thumb’s Starbucks. I don’t drink coffee, so I just chat. We had a nice visit. Later I picked up some groceries. Hey! Eggs were on sale with a digital coupon. 69 cents, cool! I was running low after my brownie baking last week.

It was SO HOT outside! How hot was it, Miss Toni. Well, it was SO HOT, I was hoping to get home before I had two dozen hard boiled eggs and a container of baked spinach.

The rest of my afternoon and evening was amazing, as usual. 🤗 The time flies by. Oh, my dear friend Helene was talking about making some risotto and chicken for dinner when we stopped at the store. She asked me if I’d like some, DUH! Yes! She even drove all the way over to bring me some containers, still warm from the stove.

I sure do have the bestest friends.

Then, another highlight of my Sunday, is my FaceTime call with the granddaughters before they get ready for bed. They are so adorable. I’m one lucky Grandma.

Happy Sunday, my friends.

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

2 Aug

“The question of bread for myself is a material question, but the question of bread for my neighbor is a spiritual question.”



Another hot and steamy Texas morning. A good day to get up early, go to church and thank God for air conditioning. Gosh, I remember in the old days, we didn’t have air conditioning in our houses, much less in the huge old brick churches, flanked all around with stained glass windows. Colorful heat. (Yes, I’m that old.)

A candle lit for family and friends.

Normally I post a montage of photos from Mass that I find on the Facebook video link for St. Gabriel. (I don’t take photos during Mass.) For some reason, they didn’t have the correct 9am Mass with Father Bartholomew. Oh well. They tend to all look the same, don’t they? Use your imagination.

Today’s Gospel is the story of how the people who had witnessed the miracle of the loaves and fish went searching for Jesus and the disciples. Jesus told them not to look for food for the body, but rather the food that gives eternal life sent from The Father. They wanted another sign so they could believe.

“Jesus answered them: I am the bread of life. No one who comes to me will ever hunger; no one who believes in me will ever thirst.”

My take on it… wow, first the followers were amazed at the miracle of the loaves and fish. But then, they wanted even more. Hey, we’ll follow you, but show us some more cool stuff. What? How many miracles do you need? Faith is believing in your heart and soul, not with just your eyes or with concrete proof plopped on your head every five minutes. There is more to life than just the material.


After Mass, a quick stop for coffee with Mr. Jerry, then pick up a few more things at Tom Thumb for Holy Family School. Yoplait yogurt 3/$1, limit 12. Cool!

My Sunday afternoon was awesome, as usual. ❤️ Church is a good way to start your day with joy and gratitude. Mr. Mike brought Bella over for me to doggie sit while they are out of town. I haven’t seen her in about a month. I think she missed me.

A few clouds threatened when Bella and I went for a walk in the park. No luck. Maybe later.

Then, the kids called this evening to FaceTime with Grandma. I was put in Grandma timeout long distance about 20 times and tickets were given, and I apologized to the officers. Ah, the imaginations of little ones.

Life is good. I am blessed. Happy Sunday, my friends.

Montage Monday:) A Week in a Peek

27 Jul

“I’m too lazy to look up or make up an interesting quote so…. What do you call a donkey with only 3 legs? …WONKEY.”



A week in a quick back at home Peek….

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

26 Jul

“God is our great provider!
The Lord’s blessings are our greatest wealth.”
― Lailah Gifty Akita, Think Great: Be Great!


Well, it’s heating up here in Texas, with the highs in the 90’s. The good news is that it wasn’t over 100 today, The bad news, we’re supposed to get there the rest of the week. Oh well, it’s Texas after all. What do we expect? I spent most of the day in the air conditioning, so today I’m grateful for electricity and air conditioning.

It was nice to get back to St. Gabriel for morning Mass. We were also celebrating our 25th Anniversary as a parish after all the services this weekend with donuts in the community center. We also welcomed a new priest who is replacing Father Dankasa. Father Don introduced Father Bart, who was warmly received.

Today’s Gospel was the very famous story of the 5 loaves and 2 fish that fed the multitude of hungry followers.

11Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated; so also the fish, as much as they wanted. 12And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the fragments left over, that nothing may be lost.” 13So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves, left by those who had eaten. 14When the people saw the sign which he had done, they said, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world!”

My take on it… even in our darkest hour, if we have faith and trust in the Lord, He will provide. What may seem impossible can be possible. Heck, not only did He feed the crowd of thousands, there was a lot more left over than they even started with.

I had to smile, this story reminded me of the many times that I started to bake mini cupcakes, thinking that two cake mixes wouldn’t be enough. Then, I ended up with about 144 little cupcakes, enough to feed an army and plenty left over.

After Mass, I stopped in the community center to say welcome to Father Bart. I ran into a few friends and said hello. I was good and didn’t even have a donut.

But, here’s a neat story of my own. A lady in the crowded cafeteria came up to me and said, “Hi, Toni. You probably don’t remember me, but I was in the CRHP Womens Retreat with you a few years ago, and I still remember your witness testimony that you told us. It was so moving. Thank you.”

Wow! I was so honored, and I thought, if my story of reconciliation, and how God took tragedy and pain, and turned it into celebration and joy, if I could inspire even just one person, then I feel very accomplished. I’ve had a few other ladies over the past four years say the same thing. I didn’t recognize their faces, but they remembered me and my story. Awesome! That made my day.

The rest of my afternoon was awesome. I stayed inside with air conditioning, so I had no idea how hot it got out there. I made a couple of phone calls and talked to my sisters. And of course, the highlight is when my little girls FaceTime and talk to Grandma. I think they miss me just a little.

Feeling blessed. Happy Sunday, my friends,

Saturday:) Some Silly Grandma Tips and Tricks

25 Jul

“When you are a mom, you have to be sensible, vigilant and on call 24/7. When you’re a grandma, you can be silly, decadent and goofy because you get to send the grandkids home and take a nap.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Tip #1- When the grandkids are little, they eat, drink and snack constantly. So, to make snacking healthy, make it fun.

Peanut butter bread with a runny face. Just add a few banana slices and raisins.

Tip #2-Almost any food that is messy for little hands can be put on a stick.

Strawberry on a stick and frozen banana on a stick. Plus, the frozen banana is refreshing in the summer and takes longer to eat.

Tip #3- If you want completely edible fruit on a stick for smaller items, use the small pretzel sticks, and you don’t worry about a wooden stick for small pieces of fruit like pineapple, apple, cantaloupe or vegetables, or cheese.

Apple chunks on a pretzel stick. Just make a small X incision with a knife and poke in the pretzel. Fun! This would work great for grown ups too. Imagine a fruit or veggie platter with pretzel sticks instead of toothpicks.

Tip #4- Baking with the grandkids is always fun and special. Make it even “funner “ by making a funny face with the eggs, oil, mini marshmallows for teeth, and chocolate chips for eyes in brownie mix or cake mix. For other types of cakes you can use peach or apple slices for a mouth, cherry pie filling eyes, etc, The marshmallow teeth just melt away and get yummy in the baking process.

Look at that adorable smile! Actually, both smiles. (Don’t do what I did. We were so busy making a funny face, I forgot to add the two other eggs. We used two boxes of mix and needed 4 eggs. Thank goodness I remembered before baking. I started pouring the mixture in the parchment lined pan and it seemed way too thick Duh! It was missing 2 more eggs. Scraped back into the bowl and added the other eggs. Good save!)

Tip #5- Fun baking and eating isn’t just for the little ones. I like to make chocolate covered frozen bananas and dipped strawberries for me and my friends sometimes. If the kids aren’t allowed chocolate, consume all the evidence while they are asleep.

Put bananas on a stick on waxed paper, freeze, melt semi-sweet chocolate chips with a few drops of vegetable oil in the microwave 30 sec. at a time, dip or spread on frozen bananas. Keep frozen until eating.
Use the rest of the melted chocolate on the strawberries. Yum!

Top #6- Last but not least… after all that baking, eating sugar, and horsing around, Grandma needs to take a nap. 😴

Thursday:) This Is Me Trying To Get Back To Normal

23 Jul

“It’s funny, but it doesn’t matter if it’s two weeks or two months or two years away from home, it takes a long time to get back to normal.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


I can’t believe I was only gone two weeks visiting family and friends in Chicago. When I got home, I felt like had I run ten consecutive marathons with a full army pack, with no food or drink, then run over by a Sherman tank. Basically, I was fried. I took a long nap, and didn’t unpack or look at the mail. I just vegged.

This morning, I didn’t open my eyes until 11 am, then rolled over for a while. I did muster up the energy to go to the bathroom, brush my teeth and check my emails and Facebook on my recently rescued iPad. But, I was still under the covers. My friend Helene called about 1:30 and asked if I’d eaten lunch. Heck, I hadn’t eaten since yesterday afternoon. No energy, no food. So, we met for lunch and caught up on all the latest gossip and world events.

Since my refrigerator was almost totally empty, (quite the miracle) I stopped at the store on the way home. I walked up and down each aisle, deciding what delicacies would grace my cart. Seeing as tomorrow is Friday, I definitely needed ice cream and chocolate almond milk, and some fresh fruit and veggies to counteract the decadence.

I unpacked the groceries on top of the counter, already cluttered with two weeks worth of bills, newspapers and junk mail.

Before I left two weeks ago, Miss Kathy across the street offered to bring in my mail, check the house, and water my plants. I only had one planter in front that she helped me carry to her house, so she could water them when she watered hers. She has so many beautiful plants and flowers. I have one lonely planter box with four little plants still alive and two that were at deaths door. When I walked over to retrieve my garden in a box this evening, my little feline friend ran across the street to greet me.

He said, “Miss Toni, where have you been? I’ve been coming over every day, and you weren’t here! See, I’ve been taking care of your flowers.”
“I missed you so much!”
He tried to follow me in the house. “Sorry, Sammi! I missed you too, but you can’t come in.”

Well, the mail is still on the counter, the suitcase isn’t put away, the clothes not washed, the dishwasher not emptied, but the ice cream and perishables got put away in the fridge. That’s something, right? After all, “Tomorrow is another day.”

That’s right, Scarlet.

Wednesday:) Where In the World Is Miss Toni?

22 Jul

“She felt a little bit worse – and a little bit better – than she had when she got here. Maybe that was the true meaning of going home.”
― Sonali Dev


Yes, my two weeks visiting family and friends in Chicago is over. Back to Texas.

But, first for my harrowing experience at the airport. My son dropped me off at O’Hare bright and early. I never sleep well before a trip, checking my phone every hour on the hour, in fear of over sleeping. Off to the airport before 7am.

The lines in security weren’t too bad. I almost forgot to put on my mask until I noticed all the masked people. Yikes! I got to security, took off my shoes, sweater, put all my belongings in the bin, and had my iPad on the side. The security person said, “Get another bin for your tablet.” There was a nun in front of me in line, and they had the toughest time with her big rosary and crucifix around her neck. She held up the line going through the metal detector. They had to wand her and pat her down. After I finally got through, I grabbed my shoes, luggage and purse, and just scooted further down to redress.

With plenty of time, almost 2 hours before boarding, I took my time going to gate K19, which was the absolute furthest gate in the terminal. It was quite a jaunt. I stopped at the gift shop, looking at all the Chicago souvenirs. By the time I shuffled to the gate, I was exhausted. My right knee and ankle have been bothering me for a couple of days, so it was good to sit down after that long long walk.

They started boarding at 9am. I knew it would be a little while since I was in group 6 on my boarding pass. I double checked my purse and realized… OH NO… 🤦‍♀️. My iPad was not in my purse. “PANIC!” I forgot to pick it up at security because it was in a separate bin. “SH…….! #*@#¥€£.” Now what? I’d never see it again if I didn’t go back and look for it. Did I have time? It was probably a mile back to security. Decision? I decided to go back and look for it even if I missed my flight.

I ran back through the airport like O.J. Simpson in that old Hertz commercial, for those of you who are old enough to remember.


The only exception was, I ran like O.J. with two casts on, a broken leg, and his arm in a sling. Basically, I hobbled at a turtle’s pace, my heavy Tumi luggage slung over my shoulder, huffing and puffing Through my double mask. I got back to security, pleaded with a gentleman behind a big plexiglass desk. “My iPad, I left my iPad! It was left in the bin. Do you have a lost and found?” I’m sure my red face, obvious limp, and desperation persuaded him to help me. He walked me over to a tiny enclosed office and asked if anyone turned in an iPad, YES! There it was! I thanked him profusely, but I had to prove it was mine. So, I opened it up, and typed in the code. I started to scramble off, but I had to sign a release and signature a line. All I could think of was, do I have time to get back?

I didn’t care, even if I missed my flight, I had my iPad. Now, to limp and hobble at a high speed all the way back to K19 on the other side of the world. I shuffled and scooted and pranced like an old wounded mare. I envisioned me pounding on the closed door, pleading for the plane to wait for me.

Yes! They were still boarding. When I finally got on the plane, I collapsed. Instead of being upset at my negligence, I was impressed with my countenance and good fortune. Life is good! It’s so good to be home!

When I got home, I changed my clothes, took two Tylenol and had a very long, well deserved nap.