Tag Archives: sunsets

Tuesday:) Toni’s Talking Power Cleaning

30 May

“The good thing about my obsessive compulsive cleaning disorder is that it only hits me during months that start with M. Thank goodness it’s almost June.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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They always say if you want to keep your house clean, you should invite guests over or have a party. In May, I had a Cinco de Mayo party, and last Friday, I had some friends over for Black Russian Friday. Thus, I was inspired to tidy up the house, but not serious cleaning. I justified it by telling myself that the floors and kitchen were just going to get dirty with company, so don’t get carried away.

This morning, I went to Zumba class at 8:30, then rode the bike for 5 miles. I came home and went for a walk… very hot at 11. I was energized. Mr. Bob, the handy man, was coming over this afternoon to install a new light fixture where an old broken one was removed, loose wires precariously dangling from the ceiling. While I was stranded at home waiting for him this afternoon, I decided to vacuum and wash the floors. It’s been weeks, maybe months. First I swept all the floors with the broom, then vacuumed same floors, then all the carpets and area rugs. Oh, while I’m here, I should get out the duster and dust all the baseboards, above the doors and sills, and those pesky dusty blinds. Pledge the table and chairs. You know how that goes. One thing leads to another.

Mr. Bob arrived precisely at 2:30. He’s always prompt. While he was sawing and wiring and climbing up and down the ladder, I continued my power cleaning frenzy in the family room and in the kitchen.

I moved out all of the chairs and mopped the floor, wiped down the counters, oh while I’m here, look at the smudges on these cabinets, oh, the stove has spills…and it went on and on.

Mr. Bob installed the light fixture in less than half an hour. He’s fast, and NO, I’m not sharing his number because then he’ll be too busy when I need him.

Before and after…

After Mr. Bob left, I continued on into the bathrooms, mopping floors, cleaning toilets and mirrors. Oh, the master bath has a tub that I never use, so I got the nozzle from the vacuum and vacuumed the tub. Yep, the tub.

Finally, the entire lower level is spotless. I’m exhausted. The upstairs will have to wait till March, the next cleaning month that starts with an M.

After I got my second wind, I made some brownie bites that will be frozen, then dipped in chocolate Friday.

Around 7:45 pm, there was just enough time to squeeze in a long evening walk, cooler with the sun setting, and always a stunning sight to see.

Tuesday:) Takin’ It To The Streets

25 Apr

“An invitation of a beautiful street is an invitation to walk within a dream!”

Mehmet Murat ildan

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I never get tired of walking in my neighborhood and takin’ it to the streets. From the early morning sunrise…

To the luscious late evening sunset…

I never get tired of walking down each street, chatting with neighbors, chasing down a sunset, or just standing still with my eyes closed, with my face absorbing the warm sun.

It was so gorgeous out today, I took three walks. The wonderful weather was so invigorating. I walked the dog at 7:30 am, went to the YMCA for my 8:30 Zumba class, rode the exercise bike for five miles…

Then, I met Mary for coffee at McDonald’s at 10, home to walk the dog again, took her home, then walked another couple of miles. I was sure that was enough, but around 7pm, I thought it was just too nice out to sit inside all night. I had to go out and chase the sunset.

Saturday:) Signs On the Street and the Sun in the Sky

4 Mar

“I look for a sign. Where to go next. you never know when you’ll get one. Even the most faithless among us are waiting to be proven wrong.”

Jillian Lauren

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A lazy sunny beautiful Saturday here. So nice to have no agenda, no commitments, no nothin’.

I went for a long walk this evening. The sun felt wonderful on my face. It was a good time to think.

About a half hour into my walk, the sun was shading the side of the sidewalk where I was walking, so I crossed the street. There, in the middle of the street was a lucky penny. I wouldn’t have been walking in the street, but there I was. There was my penny.

Then, on my way home, God painted the sky with beautiful colors to remind me that I only have to open my eyes, look up in the sky or down on the street to see the signs, to see my blessings, each and every day.

Wednesday:) Where Ya Been Miss Toni

23 Nov

“You know you’re having a great adventure when you can’t get WIFI or cell phone reception.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Well, yesterday I wrote about my adventures at the Rio Grande, thinking of my ancestors and the people on the other side of the river.

Today, I want to share just a few photos from Big Bend National Park. I have a few hundred, so I’ll spare you the ordeal of sifting through them all.

I’m back in McKinney, with WIFI and cell phone reception. Yay!

The highlights. These are probably the ones I’d like to paint in watercolor… next chance I get. I took my paints with me, but didn’t get around to painting. My New Year’s resolution.

Some gorgeous scenery, glorious sunsets, and desert beauty.

Saturday at St. Gabriel’s Holiday Boutique and a Sunset

5 Nov

“We fellowship with God when we fellowship with people” ― Sunday Adelaja

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Today was St. Gabriel’s Holiday Boutique. It’s always a wonderful combination of fabulous crafters and devoted volunteers. The Women’s Club and Knights of Columbus organized, set up, cooked and prepared for this annual event. I ran into a lot of good friends and found many treasures for my holiday gift giving. 


The first encounter was my friend Mary and her lovely daughter and family. Mary and I greet at the door before 9 o’clock Mass pretty much every Sunday. We had lunch together, and the Knights of Columbus started preparing food and arranging tables around 5 am. 


I hadn’t seen my good friend Bonita in quite a while. She was volunteering with the crafting women’s group. Always a big smile and a hug.


Gosh, I haven’t seen Paula since last year’s Boutique. We used to play tennis together. I haven’t played in years. She is an amazing player. I’m an old has been. She makes lovely jewelry with sports teams and local scool logos and mascots. 

Another fun friend, Krys, sews, knits, crochets and creates beautiful craft items. I picked up a little treasure for my Baby Belle. Krys was another friend who used to come and volunteer with me at Towne Creek. She taught the ladies origami and jewelry making and many other crafts that I have no talent for or ability. 



I came home with a big bag of treasures, not to mention a dozen tamales that the Knights were selling on the way out. 

It was a beautiful afternoon and evening. I made sure to stop inside the sanctuary and light a candle before I drove home, with a special intention and a heart filled with gratitude.


On my evening walk, I stopped at my neighbors open garage and joined Mr. Larry and Miss Sandy for a beer and conversation. The sunset blazed orange and gold in the western sky, reminding me of my blessings and the glorious scenery that God paints for us every day. 

This is my sunset….

Friday:) From Sunrise to Sunset

14 Oct

“A sunset will color your dreams.And a sunrise will color your smile.

It’s all God asks.” 

― Anthony T. Hincks

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(A picture’s worth a thousand words. Two pictures tell an entire story.)

To color my smile.


To color my dreams.


Happy Friday…

Sunday Sermon and a Sunset

17 Sep

“Throughout life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, cause hate in your heart will consume you too.” 

― Will Smith

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Another beautiful Sunday morning greeting parishioners at St. Gabriel’s. I actually remembered to wear my name tag today, and more and more people are saying, “Good morning, Toni.” I’ve been learning more names and giving out more hugs and handshakes,too. The new church building is coming along.


Today’s Gospel was another story about forgiveness. ( Is somebody up there trying to tell me something?) Peter asked Jesus about forgiveness. 

Gospel MT 18:21-35

“Peter approached Jesus and asked him, “Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive? As many as seven times?”  Jesus answered, “I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times. That is why the kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who decided to settle accounts with his servants.”

When the servant who owed a huge amount of money to the king begged for mercy and not to be sold, along with his wife, family and possessions, he begged… “Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.” The king forgave him his debt. Later, that same man came across a fellow servant who owed him a small amount of money, and instead of forgiving the other man’s debt, he had him imprisoned. When the king heard this, he summoned the man and said, “You wicked servant!” And he asked why he couldn’t forgive his fellow servant a small debt after being begged, when he had forgiven his huge debt. The king was angry and had the man tortured.

My take on it…well, first of all, these Gospels lately have been hitting home. I’ve been working on this forgiveness chapter in my life, and I’ll admit, I’m not totally there yet. Here’s my dilemma. In all these verses and Gospel readings, someone is begging for forgiveness. And yes, we are told that God will forgive us anything if we ask Him. But, they ASK! I keep reading quotes and have people telling me that I need forgive,  even when someone doesn’t ask for forgiveness. You do it for yourself. I STILL DON’T GET IT! 

I had this discussion with friends just a few days ago. My philosophy is actions speak louder than words. I don’t have to say the words, “I forgive you,” and I still can go on with my life, without hate or anger, be the best person I can be, and have a good heart. But, unless I am asked to forgive someone or some offense, there’s no point saying the words. If they don’t even think they’ve done anything wrong or have harmed you in any way, there’s no point. It means nothing to them, so it means nothing to me.

If you ask God to forgive you, He will. That’s why He’s God and we’re just human. He knows what’s in your heart. I have asked God for forgiveness and strength, and I believe that has been granted. But, He also will NOT forgive an evil person with an evil heart. They will be punished.  Do you see the point now? You have to sincerely ask? You have to change your ways and change your heart. It’s not a free pass to do what you please.

Okay, now on a brighter note.🎼 After Mass, the Knights of Columbus had free donuts outside at a couple of tables. There was a small donation jar. I walked over, slightly tempted, as I hadn’t eaten since lunch yesterday. But, I’m not a huge donut fan, even chocolate. So, I just put a dollar in the jar and said, “I’m saving the calories. Thanks for all you do.” Then, off I went to Sprouts.

Did I mention I was hungry? Uh oh! Sprouts had dark chocolate covered almonds on sale for ONLY $2.99 a pound. My downfall! That’s insane! I’m insane! I bought many pounds. I’m too embarrassed to tell you how many. I’m glad I passed on the donuts.


But, before you judge me too harshly, I did buy some apples, peaches, green peppers, tomatoes, and blackberries. It looks like a lot, but I like to share with my friend, Miss Eleanor. She can’t get out to the store much.

It’s been a good Sunday. I’m going to post this and go out for a nice long walk. It’s still kinda hot out there, so I may have to stop for a beer if Mr. Larry’s garage is open. 

Here’s my sunset from last night…