Tag Archives: smiles

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

8 Aug

“The best way to make new friends is just smile. The rest just falls into place.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Yikes, another hot day. Crazy! No end in sight. It was SO hot today… How hot was it, Miss Toni? It was SO hot that when the deacon mentioned the intentions to pray for, one was for rain and relief from the heat. “Lord, hear our prayer.” 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼

I arrived at church nice and early and chatted with friends before greeting at the door. I ran down the hall and caught the ladies getting off the Chateau bus. I asked Miss Marilyn if she would save me a seat, as both Helene and Jerry are on vacation, and I don’t get in until after Mass starts.

Today, the parishioners were especially cheerful, with big smiles and a few hugs. I greeted Miss Barbara with a hug, and the lady behind her, who I didn’t know asked, “Oh, are we giving out hugs today?” I replied with a smile and a hug. I hold open the huge heavy metal door for folks, keeping the door closed when there is a brief lull. We don’t want to waste all that air conditioning. I even received a sweet compliment this morning. One lady said, “You have such a beautiful smile!” Aw! Made my day.

Today’s Gospel was the story Jesus told the disciples about the master returning from a wedding, and if the servants were prepared and vigilant, they would be rewarded by being served by the master at his own table…

“Gird your loins and light your lamps
and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding,
ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks.
Blessed are those servants
whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.
Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself,
have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them.
And should he come in the second or third watch
and find them prepared in this way,
blessed are those servants.
Be sure of this:
if the master of the house had known the hour
when the thief was coming,
he would not have let his house be broken into.
You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect,
the Son of Man will come.”


My take on it…. I guess we always have to be prepared for our last day or judgment day. No one knows the exact day or time that will be our last, do we? If you live a good life, you will always be prepared.

Then, we had another baptism and welcomed Callahan John to our Catholic community.

After Mass, a few friends stopped for coffee at McD. Barbara, Joyce, me, Rich and Judy. Oh my goodness! We shared stories and laughed and giggled so loud. At one point I thought the management might come out and reprimand the old folks at table one.

I walked over to Tom Thumb to get a few sale items. I always look to see if Miss Suzy is working and I go to her check out line. I was in a silly mood, so I asked her to pose for a photo op. She was feeling silly too.

The adorable Miss Suzy. Cute!

On my way out, I saw Mr. Alex, who works in the floral department. He and his wife are artist friends. So, he had to show me a couple hundred pictures of his new grand baby.

Very proud grandpa Alex. I was tempted to show him a few hundred of my granddaughters’ photos, but then I’d never get out of there and he’d get in trouble.

Also, when I was getting ready to leave, I received a smile and a wave from a young man that I didn’t recognize. He said, “I know you from St. Gabriel. I see you every Sunday greeting at the door, even years ago at the old church.” He introduced himself, and we shook hands. We chatted a few minutes about how much we both love St. Gabriel. He said that he taught vacation Bible school and CCD for many years, but as his kids got older, he stopped. He missed it.

This is Gilbert. Another new friend, another smile. So many smiles today.

The rest of my Sunday was lazy, lazy, lazy. A nice FaceTime call with the granddaughters after dinner. Now, if my California boy calls me tonight, my day will be just perfect.

Happy Sunday, my friends. I hope you are smiling. And, oh yes, join me in praying for some much needed rain here in Texas. 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼 Every little bit helps. Thank you.

Saturday:) Some Sidewalk Chalk Art to Make You Smile

3 May

“A smile is happiness you’ll find right under your nose. “

– Tom Wilson


On these quiet sequestered quarantined days, it’s always a pleasure to walk around the neighborhood and see how families are sharing their artistic talent and words of inspiration.

Happy Saturday!!! Cheers, my friends… just grape juice… but the pretty glass makes me smile.

Wednesday:) What Makes You Smile?

21 Nov

“Use your smile to change the world; don’t let the world change your smile.”

~ Chinese Proverb


What makes you smile? There are so many things that make me smile, and it’s usually the little things. I was thinking about that today. I find myself smiling all the time, and the best part is, a smile is contagious. Hey, instead of sharing a cold or the flu, how about sharing your smile.

What makes me smile….

The faces of my family, and those little grandchildren, friends and hugs, laughter and music, dancing and singing, and how the sky glows with brilliant color, and when I create a piece of art with my God given talent.

And here is our friend Bob singing an impromptu song to his adorable wife Joni at Karaoke.

Are you smiling?

Ash Wednesday, Walmart, and a Wonderful Friend

7 Mar

“Sharing a smile is kind of like the flu. The more you are around people, they can’t help but catch it too.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Part of the journey in life is slipping and falling along the way; in these times true friends are the ones who pick you up and dust you off.”

― Ken Poirot


I went to Mass this morning for Ash Wednesday. I was pleasantly surprised that the church was nearly full at 8:30 in the morning on a work and school day. I’m sure the evening Mass will be crowded too.

Not everyone knows the reason that we have ashes placed on our foreheads. When I was a little girl, I had no idea what the symbolism meant, but I knew it was a sacred right, and every time I looked in a mirror, I felt special.

Ash Wednesday is a Christian holy day of prayer, fasting and repentance. … Ash Wednesday derives its name from the placing of repentance ashes on the foreheads of participants to either the words “Repent, and believe in the Gospel” or the dictum “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.

When Father Don gave his homily, he basically told us that as we begin this Lenten season, it wasn’t so much about giving up candy or cookies or alcohol, but more about focusing on being more aware of our duties as Christians. We should speak kinder, be more generous, help one another, be kind to strangers, reflect and pray more often, and just be aware of how blessed we are and share those blessings. As I sat there, I wondered what more I could do during Lent to be a better Catholic, a better version of myself. That’s pretty tough… she giggles in silence, as I’m already pretty amazing. (Little inside joke)

After Mass, I waited a while until the church was nearly empty. I wanted to take a picture of the crown of thorns near the altar with the backdrop of the beautiful new sanctuary. A picture is worth a thousand words…

I decided to stop at the bank and Walmart on the way home. I needed to have the auto service department check my tires. I keep getting a low tire symbol light up on my dashboard every few weeks. The man looked at the offending tire a bit, filled it with air and the light went away. He said to come back if it continued.

Since I was already there, I decided to go in and shop a while and get a few things. Time to stock up on more chocolate chips and marshmallows for brownies. I was running low, plus I was going to bake some brownies for my firemen when I got home.

As I wandered aimlessly through the aisles, I needed to go check the craft and art supply section. I absolutely didn’t need a thing, but sometimes I just need to look at paint and brushes and markers and fabric, just to get my “artist fix.” If you are a crafter or artist, you know what I’m talking about. While I was looking at the tubes of paint, my cell phone rang. I was so thrilled and delighted when I saw the name. I answered with a giggling, “Miss Della! How are you?”

My dear sweet friend Miss Della moved to Tennessee a few years ago. We keep in touch on Facebook, but we haven’t spoken in ages. She said she was looking at her Facebook page and saw my picture and something I posted and she was compelled to call just to say hello because she missed me and the ladies at Towne Creek. Then, she proceeded to tell me how much joy I’ve brought into her life and how much she loves me and thinks about me all the time. Well, we were both crying on the phone. That was one of the sweetest and kindest things I’ve heard in a very long time. It made my heart burst with joy. What perfect timing. That brightened my entire day and I’m still glowing. Love you Miss Della.

After we hung up, I continued strolling along the aisles and grinning from ear to ear. When I was checking out, Miss Debra the checker smiled and said, “How was the service?” I wasn’t sure why she would ask that. I didn’t have any special service at Walmart. Then, she pointed to the ashes on my forehead, OH! I forgot about the big ol’ cross of ashes on my head. I told her it was a very nice service and started telling her about our new church. She said several employees and friends also go to St. Gabriel’s and told her how beautiful it was. As we chatted, the lady behind me with a cart overflowing with groceries asked, “Where did you go to get ashes?” She explained that she was new to McKinney and recently moved here.

Well of course, the three of us ladies were laughing and chatting, and discussing the new church and the community. I dug into my purse and took out a business card with my name and phone number, and told the new lady, Diana, that she should call me sometime and I’d be happy to answer any questions about the area or show her around town. Miss Debra just smiled a big smile and said, “I just love what’s happening here. This is so nice.”

Well, you know me. I had to get out my phone and take some selfies of my new friends.

Miss Debra is such a sweet happy lady.

Hopefully Diana will call me soon just to say hi and keep in touch.

I’m still not sure why I seem to be so lucky and blessed, but I do know that a smile and a kind word is contagious. It’s kind of like the flu, the more you’re around people, they can’t help but catch it too.

Sunday Sermon, Smiles, and Some Other Stuff

25 Jun

“More smiling, less worrying. More compassion, less judgment. More blessed, less stressed. More love, less hate.” ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart


A gorgeous Texas morning, not too hot, not too cold. It was great to be back at St. Gabriel’s again and greeting at the door with Ms. Mary. We hugged, talked in between our, “Good morning” salutations, and of course, I showed her some new grandbaby pictures. Actually, I showed a bunch of people. Mary has the sweetest smile and the sweetest heart to match. Selfie time.

Today’s sermon was about Jesus telling the apostles that God sees everything, knows everything, and watches over us all…

Jesus said to the Twelve: “Fear no one. Nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known.

My take on it, it’s kinda like Santa Clause, “He knows when you are sleeping. He knows when you’re awake. He knows if you been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake.” Or something like that.

After Mass, a quick trip to Sprouts. Not again! A great sale on fruit and vegetables and nuts that I couldn’t pass up. I’ll share some with Miss Eleanor at Towne Creek and maybe others. Tomatoes 48 cents a pound! That’s crazy cheap! Can you O.D. On tomatoes? Peaches and nectarines and grapes 88 cents. Crazy!

Then, home to walk my little furry friend, Bella. Getting warmer outside. Well, it is Texas after all. Now, all I have to do on this beautiful Sunday is decide what to have for dinner. Maybe a fruit and tomato salad.

I’d rather have friends than wrinkles!

Saturday:) Some Special Smiles Across the Miles

9 Apr

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ― Thich Nhat Hanh


My dear friend Debbie came to visit Mom and me today. ( Debbie is my English teacher friend and we’ve been friends since the 70’s. She taught me proper use of grammar, including that it’s “Mom and me,” not “Mom and I.” It’s a long trek from her house in the city out to Elgin, but she always makes the journey. 

A nice visit with Mom, then we were off to a craft show, a wonderful lunch with deep dish pizza, and best of all… a visit to see my new granddaughter. Oh yes, and their parents, my handsome son and lovely daughter-in-law. 

Look at that smile! Isn’t she just the cutest!

Thanks Debbie. You’re a wonderful friend.

Saturday:) Scary Upsidedown Smiley Faces and Some Monkeys

25 Jun

“A smile is contagious and nothing to sneeze at. Share a smile, not a cold.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Everyone loves smiley faces and monkeys, don’t they? But, Mom had some mylar balloons in her guest room, left over from her birthday, and every morning when I woke up, I saw these saggy upsidedown yellow smiles that looked rather sad. The monkeys looked rather ominous, too. My eyes opened to this sight…

Yikes! I wasn’t really scared. Actually it was rather amusing. I sometimes feel deflated with an upsidedown smile, so I could relate. But for now, I just thought it was a funny picture. Had to share.

Sunday Sermon, Sunshine and Smiles

22 Nov

“Some people are so much sunshine to the square inch.” ― Walt Whitman


A beautiful sunny day here in McKinney. I had the loveliest surprise on my way to church this morning. I was driving down Stonebridge Dr., when who did I see walking down the street but my two dear friends Sherri and Michael. Of course, I just slammed on my brakes and stopped to chat. Only a few cars had to buzz around me. Then, you know me. I had to get a photo op in. “Hi Murphy’s!”

Great way to start my morning. Then, I did my greeting thing before Mass, holding the door open, smiling, shaking a few hands, and greeting all who entered. I’m getting pretty good at it. I still take a little Match Box car every Sunday for my young friend Landon. He always has a big smile. Isn’t he cute!

Today, we celebrated the Feast of Christ the King. Father Charles related the Gospel to a king who so loves his people that he doesn’t ask his army to go out and do the fighting for him, but goes out and sacrifices his own life for his people. 

My take on it…don’t ask anyone to do anything that you are not willing to do yourself. Lead by example, love by example. That’s what Jesus did. 


Gospel, John 18:33-37

33 So Pilate went back into the Praetorium and called Jesus to him and asked him, ‘Are you the king of the Jews?’

34 Jesus replied, ‘Do you ask this of your own accord, or have others said it to you about me?’
35 Pilate answered, ‘Am I a Jew? It is your own people and the chief priests who have handed you over to me: what have you done?’
36 Jesus replied, ‘Mine is not a kingdom of this world; if my kingdom were of this world, my men would have fought to prevent my being surrendered to the Jews. As it is, my kingdom does not belong here.’
37 Pilate said, ‘So, then you are a king?’ Jesus answered, ‘It is you who say that I am a king. I was born for this, I came into the world for this, to bear witness to the truth; and all who are on the side of truth listen to my voice.’


After Mass, the Knights of Columbus were hosting a pancake breakfast, so Miss Virginia and I walked over and had breakfast and met a nice couple from Frisco. Afterwards, I walked over to my car, ready to leave, and realized that the 11 o’clock Mass was starting in 15 minutes. I turned off my car and thought…I should go over and greet for the next Mass for a few minutes while I’m here, as they are having trouble getting  anyone to sign up for greeters. I never get to see the 11 o’clock Catholics. I saw a lot of new faces and smiles, then left after Mass started.

Yes, it was a nice Sunday morning with sunshine and smiles.

I always bring my own sunshine!

Saturday Smiles and Funny Faces

12 Sep

“I enjoy it when the world smiles; the more smiles, the warmer I am.” ― Dejan Stojanovic, The Shape


I love it when people smile, but I see smiles in just about everything. Some of you are already familiar with my brownie mix smiles. 

In honor of 9/11.

Then I see faces in my breakfast. 

Lately, when I’m out walking or running, I see smiling faces in the oil spots on the street.  

Just weird, right? It’s a gift, it’s a curse. 

Keep smiling!!!!