Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Day Pictures

Our Christmas day started with some clouds as the cold front moves through the area. They soon cleared off and we had a very nice day with clear skies

It was chilly and I turned on the fireplace to warm me up. Jim was still sleeping.
Santa left Boo a stocking full of toys and when he joined me down stairs I helped him open the stocking

the Christmas tree was first out, it's a plush toy and he likes it!


a tennis ball and football were worthy of barks. Not sure why he likes to bark at balls! but it roused Jim enough for him to ask why Boo was barking












Sunset was pretty








Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Day

I sure hope y'all had a wonderful day!

Late afternoon yesterday the mail list was finally posted and our package from Sonsearae arrived! I headed down to guest services to get it and while there I picked up a small package for Anne and Scotty. They were heading out for Christmas Eve services. Sonsearae got each of us a New Orleans Saints Champions Super Bowl T-shirts! Mine is Grey and Jim has a black one. She also sent each of cookies that she baked and they are gooooood!

Jim has been battling a head cold the past few days and yesterday I was feeling the symptoms. You know, sore throat, stuffed nose. So dinner was simple. We both had a salad and I had a cup of soup while Jim had some leftover macaroni and cheese.

Christmas Eve was spent quietly inside. We watched tv, played on the computers and watched a dvd of Cadfael. During the evening we heard the carolers stroll by as the wind picked up and the temperature fell.

It was still nice when we went to bed but during the night the wind howled on occasion and the temperature was 53 when I got up this morning. I’m sure Santa had a rough time with his sleigh! By 0800 the clouds had blown away and we were left with clear blue skies.

When I got up I turned on the fireplace even though it was 64 degrees in the house. It’s pretty to look at on this Christmas morning. As you can see Santa left Boo a stocking with new toys!

After Jim got up I got dressed, made the bed and did the breakfast dishes. Also too Boo outside and over to the Scott’s to visit.

Anne, Scotty, Amy, Dan, Jim and I went to Hayashi Hibachi for our Christmas Dinner. As usual we had a good time with our friends, the food was great and we all loved the dinner ‘show’. We arrived back at the resort in time to have dessert with Karen, Dave, Diana, John and Pat and Vern. Made some coffee to take with me as did Jim and Anne. It was getting chilly outside so we all grabbed a jacket.

Dessert consisted of pecan pie, pumpkin pie, carrot cake and a tin full of cookies! Not sure but I think Jim sampled a couple of them. I had a few bites of the carrot cake. Amy, Anne and I shared a slice!

We didn’t stay long because the temperature was dropping fast as the sun was going down. It’s supposed to get into the 40’s tonight with freezing temperatures in some parts of south Texas. We were home before it got dark. Boo was happy to see us.

We’ve spent the evening just relaxing in our pj’s and watching tv. I've been trying to upload pictures but apparently there is a problem. I hope this blog will post.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Gifts

This time of year we exchange gifts.....sometimes we wonder at the thoughts that go into these gifts. I love food gifts. It can be a card for a restaurant or homemade gift of fudge, snacks or cookies. Or it can be a basket of goodies like the one Sonsearae sent Jim and I.

this basket from Eden Foods has several meal ideas. Three boxes of pasta, pizza sauce, olive oil, spaghetti sauce, diced tomatoes and beans. I'm sure Jim doesn't care that it's organic, but I do.

Did you see the lunar eclipse? Alas I slept through it but it was a gift also. First time in 400 years since the last eclipse that occurred on the winter solstice. I'm sure untold millions saw it and rejoiced in it. I took some pictures of the moon rising and it was huge as it climbed up the eastern sky





I did get up in the night, 0248 to be exact. When I woke up it was dark and I thought it odd since we had a full moon so I thought I might see some part of the eclipse. I went outside but all I saw was a small yellowish, gauzy looking moon. I didn't have my glasses on so maybe I wasn't seeing exactly what was up there!
This past year we've had the good fortune of living next door to and traveling with the Scott's. Anne and Scotty are dear friends and that is a gift. As we get older having friends is important. Our families are scattered and we don't see them often. The gift of friendship is a great one and one I cherish.

As we celebrate this Christmas take time to remember our military men and women who are far from home.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Spaghetti Dinner with Friends

DROID....that's what my new phone says when I get a new text message.....DROID! :)

Jim and I both got new phones this week. The Droid X by Motorola. You see Anne wanted a new phone so the four of us went to the Verizon store to check out what's available. Jim and I wanted to price the various phones, options and check out internet options. Well the three of us ended up with the Droid X, poor Scotty has to wait until February before he can get one. for the past two days we've been learning how to use our phones. Jim now has texting. Having a 3g phone is fun!

Tonight we went to dinner down the road at Diana and Johns' place. Karen started inviting everyone to a spaghetti dinner and while I didn't count all of them there sure were a lot of people and the gathering! Spaghetti and meat balls along with various breads, salads and desserts. I took an apple salad that had cranberries and walnuts. It was tasty enough to be a dessert.

When I got home from the dinner there was a big box on the patio! A Christmas present from Sonsearae and Chris, A gift basket from Eden Foods. Packed in the lovely basket are the ingredients for Italian pasta dishes......Yum!

Today was cool and cloudy and during our dinner the clouds cleared out and we even had some sunshine for awhile. Tonight the temperature will dip into the low 50's/upper 40's. Great for sleeping with the comforter!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Catching Up

Well, my birthday has come and gone. On Wednesday I turned 63 and I'm happy to celebrate another year! Also on Wednesday Anne and I went to Spago Spa and Salon and got our hair cut and we both got pedicures. It's a sad fact but the older we get the more difficult it is to see your toes! Keeping the nails trimmed is doable but putting polish on them is next to impossible. And I must admit it's a pleasure having someone else pamper you.

We rushed home, changed clothes, grabbed Scotty and Jim then drove back the way we came to Outback Steak House to partake of the special they have running now. We all ordered steak and lobster tails. We all enjoyed the meal!

Jim gave me a beautiful card and some chocolate. Sonsearae sent me the Johnny Depp Pirate movies and Anne carved me a bird that I admired in her home. It was a very good day.

Friday we had happy hour at the Scott's with the whole gang. Karen and Dave, Pat and Vern, Linda and Dan, Amy and Dan, Jim and I, Anne and Scotty. Terry stopped by as did Jeni and Don. A lot of good food, drinks flowed and we all had a good time.

It may be me but I think it's cooler this December. And I don't care for it! Wearing shoes and long pants is cumbersome. And we've even had to wear jackets! :) For the most part the days are nice and the nights are cool enough to sleep well.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Gang's All Here!

If possible, today was worse than yesterday in the weather department. Cloudy skies and colder temperatures. But no rain....and we could use some.

We didn't do anything exciting over the weekend. Just stayed close to home and inside mostly because of the cool temperatures. Saturday we had a gathering down at Diana and John's. I guess about 20 people with food and drinks. It was gorgeous weather and we didn't come home until it started cooling off around 1900.

That night the front started coming through and Sunday was gloomy with no sun at all. We watched football with a break at Barnes and Nobles before we went to the Clubhouse for the burger bash. I did not partake but instead had a salad while Jim had a burger, potato salad and beans with chips and cookies. We sat with Anne and Scotty and then Terry and Mark joined us and once everyone was there the managers Jeni and Don joined us. As usual we had a good time.

When I got up this morning it was gloomy outside and chilly inside. I turned on the fireplace and for breakfast I fixed blueberry muffins. After breakfast I made the bed and cleaned up the kitchen so I could mess it up again. Overnight I soaked some Navy beans so I could make a pot of soup. So I chopped and diced and mashed and for lunch we had soup!

After that was eaten and cleaned up we went to the Movies and saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I enjoyed it and I can't wait to see part two next year.

We learned this morning that our friends Karen and Dave would be arriving this afternoon and sure enough when we arrived back at the resort they were here and almost all set up. Linda and Dan were traveling with them and it was good to see them too. So, the whole gang is here, let the fun begin!

Not that we haven't had fun up to now but it can only get better now!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Beautiful Days

I love it when the weather cooperates! We've warmed up to the 70-80's during the day and the nights are in the 60's. I'm sure it won't last long, another cold front is bound to come along

Other than sitting around and reading or computing we haven't done much. Yesterday I took a bike ride around the area and took some pictures of our blooming and interesting plants. I hope you like them!

Not sure what this bush/tree is but the berries are pretty, it's about as autumnal as we get around here


these cactus are everywhere and used in the resort as natural plantings.


I like the palm growing in the middle of this one!



the butterflies like this plant





this color combination caught my eye




these yellow flowers are everywhere!






Wednesday, December 1, 2010

BRRRRR

December sure started cold! I was up at 0430, I’ve no idea why I couldn’t go back to sleep. It was 39 degrees outside and about 59 inside. Brrr! After I made my coffee I was a bit warmer. Of course the fireplace and being wrapped in a small quilt helped also. Before the sunrise it had dropped to 37

Our sunrise was pretty

After a breakfast of sausage and pancakes I looked forward to doing the dishes because my hands were so cold…

Jim headed off to work and I made the bed and got dressed. We didn't really do much this morning. Scotty came over and visited for a bit, Anne was at Zumba class.

Jim and I went out for a bit of shopping and lunch. Our first stop was Walmart, which didn't take long. Then we had lunch at Wendy's, can't remember the last time we ate there but chili sounded good and it was!

Our next stop was the Social Security office to give them copies of my DD214's. Its official, I'm old....and applying for my benefits.... :)

Our last stop was Academy Sports to pick up a few supplies for gun cleaning and target practice. We stopped and picked up our mail thanks to Anne letting us know we needed to stop. We have online notification that makes it nice. Once home we put everything away and then joined the Scott's for some coffee, beer and conversation.

It was a beautiful afternoon but once the sun started slipping down it got cooler so we ended our visit and headed home. We skipped the weekly happy hour. I showered and then Jim showered.

Dinner was tomato soup and Jim had a grilled cheese sandwich. I had some stuffing, much better than grilled cheese!

It's just now 2115 and it's 56 degrees outside. Another night sleeping under the comforter....

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

First it's Hot, then it's Cold

I love south Texas! The weather is always changing. Just when you get used to wearing shorts it gets cold (relatively speaking) and we have to wear long pants and shoes! A couple days of cool weather then the heat comes back......I will state that I like cold temperatures for sleeping. Our comforter is cozy and warm.

We've been alternating between leftovers from Thanksgiving and other choice meals. Today we had turkey, dressing and gravy but I fixed Roasted Brussels Sprouts from the Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health cookbook. It was a hit and I include the recipe here in case you like sprouts

1 lb Brussels sprouts
1 1/2 T olive oil
1/4 t salt

Clean and cut sprouts in half toss in oil and place on lightly oiled pan cut side down. Place in preheated 375 degree oven 12 - 18 minutes or until tender and lightly browned.

while cooking make the dressing

2 T minced red onion or shallots
1 t Dijon mustard
1 T lemon juice
1 1/2 T olive oil

stir into the sprouts and toss with 1/2 cup toasted walnuts or pecans. I used walnuts and it tasted just great! you can also use salt and pepper to taste.

Last night was very windy and it kept waking me up so I expect to sleep better tonight. The front is here and it's getting cooler.

Jim had a kayaking trip today but cancelled it due to the wind. Not good taking novices out on the Rio Grande River with a lot of wind.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Day

First a wee bit of catching up. Last Sunday we had a date for lunch at BJ's Brewhouse with Marilyn and Ed Dray. When we pulled in they were standing there waiting for us and I must say it was nice to see our friends again. We've spent time with them in Colorado Springs the past three summers.

We each ordered flatbread pizzas and had a tall cold beer to wash it down. Mostly we enjoyed the conversation and just being together. They're staying at Llano Grande for the winter season so we should see them again.

Jim worked Monday and Tuesday getting the kayaks ready for paddling trips. Yesterday he just chilled most of the day reading or using the computer. I made a cherry apple pie and the cranberry sauce for our Thanksgiving dinner.

This morning when I got up we had wind and cloudy skies. Soon the clouds cleared, the sun came out and it sure warmed up quickly. I had the turducken in the oven shortly after 0900. Then I got to work chopping and slicing the ingredients for the mushroom stuffing. Once I got the veggies sauteed I put everything into the slow cooker. Jim and I had to sample it for lunch around noon!

Because it was HOT and windy we had our dinner indoors. Anne recently purchased some new dishes and the clear glass looks lovely on my new tablecloth!

there were six of us, Anne and Scotty, Amy and Dan plus Jim and I.
Jim and I sat at the 'kids' table. :)

We ladies worked on our menu and each of us supplied several dishes and everything was tasty! Of course we had to much food but that's what Thanksgiving is for! Turducken, ham, mashed potatoes and two gravies, two cranberry dishes, carrots, brussel sprouts, butternut squash, some olives and artichoke hearts.



Three desserts! Anne made a mincemeat pie, Amy made a lemon bundt cake and I made a cherry apple pie.


Some of us had wine and most of us had seconds! It was a good dinner with good friends!


Boo didn't get to join us and I'm sure the wonderful cooking smells frustrated him. He didn't get to sample much of it!

Jim and I came home around 1600, fed Boo and I did the clean up and dishes. The Saints were playing Dallas and we watched the game and it came down to nail biting win for the Saints! Jim spent some time with other work campers decorating outside the office. I passed and apparently missed out on the eggnog
The day ended with a pretty sunset so I'll leave you with these pictures. I hope however you celebrated this day you enjoyed it. Jim and I have much we are thankful for, each other, our friends and our health. Not much more could we ask for!














Sunday, November 21, 2010

Lazy Weekend

Our weather has been bouncing around from crisp mornings to sultry days. I mention this because we have to check the overnight forecast to decide what coverings we need on the bed. Last night it was the quilt and in my case quilts.

Jim has had the past three days off from work and we've enjoyed out time together. Friday we dropped Boo off at the groomer and then we headed to Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen that just opened up here in the Valley. We've enjoyed their food before so we splurged. Worth every penny but I'm glad it's a drive to get there as we don't need to go often! We both had appetizers, Jim had the Boudin and I had a cup of seafood gumbo. Of course we had beer and they brought French bread and butter. We probably could have left then instead of waiting for our lunch.

Jim ordered a shrimp po-boy which came with a half plate of fries. I opted for the grilled catfish on a bed of dirty rice and a side of rice with a seafood tomato based sauce. All of it was verrrry good! I brought home most of my lunch and Jim brought home part of his appetizer. Which we enjoyed last night for dinner.

After lunch we went to the Outlet Mall so Jim could find some sandals and we did! We hit several shoes stores and he found a pair in Skechers. Of course they were having a sale, buy one get half off another pair, so I found a pair. Even at that price we stilled paid a lot for two pair of shoes.

On the way home we got the call to pick up Boo so we didn't make any other stops. We arrived home, changed clothes and I had some coffee. The managers, Jeni and Don stopped by to tell Jim his shirts had arrived so he pedaled down to pick them up and found out he had a meeting at 1700. We had a good laugh because it was his idea to have happy hour with our friends and he missed out on some of the fun!

Amy and Dan, Pat and Vern, Jim and I (Boo too) joined Anne and Scotty for some good eats and drinks. Dan brought the Vita-Mix and fixins for the Margarita's, Vern always brings his beer in a cooler and Amy and Anne had moscato wine. Let's see, for food we had grilled hot dogs, pico de gallo and chips, I think there were two cheesy dips, fresh veggies and M&M's. Pat always supplies the guys with those chocolate tid bits.

Taps can be heard from the Veterans Cemetery and Friday night was especially clear, the wind was blowing just right. I had just taken down the flags when we heard Taps and coyotes! Day is done. But the party was in full swing. Jim arrived a short time later and we all sat around having a good time when Jim finally got chilled enough (he was wearing shorts) to head home. The rest of us were dressed more warmly! I picked up our stuff and joined him. It was almost 2000 so it was time to break up the party.

He showered using all the hot water and when I could I showered and then did the dishes. I made popcorn and we ended the day watching TV.

Saturday was another lazy day. I always have the daily chores of dishes and bed making, maybe some laundry. Anne and I went shopping. We stopped at TJ Maxx and then HEB for milk and bread, etc. Jim had gone out to Academy Sports and arrived home just after me.

We had coffee on the patio enjoying the breeze and chatting. As I said earlier we had leftovers for dinner and the dishes were just as good the second time around.

The moon was brilliant rising in the east and I spent a lot of time taking pictures of it
Sunset was pretty but no clouds

this was my last shot of the day and if I do say so myself, it turned out spectacular!
Today we're having lunch with the Drays! We haven't seen them since Colorado Springs and it will be fun catching up with them.
Jim goes back to work tomorrow, I will miss our time together. I sure have enjoyed this weekend with him!


Friday, November 19, 2010

Time flies when you're having fun!

Sometimes I wonder where the time goes and I wonder how we fit so much into our days! Each passing day brings more folks to the resort and we still have some spaces to fill. By years end it should be filled to capacity.

Wednesday we had our first Margarita hour and even though it was noisy the crowd wasn't that big. These get togethers are interesting. It's for meeting and greeting but most everyone sits with their friends. We're supposed to bring a dish to share and depending on what's on sale at HEB we get repeat dishes, not many new items. This week we didn't have many sweets.

Yesterday we finalized the menu for Thanksgiving. There will be six of us sharing the meal. The resort does meal but we like the quieter gathering with our friends. Of course I may have a problem because the Saints will be playing Dallas and you know how I like the Saints!

the first squash blossom!
this little Admiral posed for this picture, he even hung around while I went inside to get my camera

Sunrise on this chilly morning, it was 46 degrees outside when I took this picture. Only 56 inside and yes, I do have the fireplace on.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

the day in pictures

Once again we had a chilly, cloudy start to the day. Doesn't happen often so I can handle it.
The only plans we had for today was a gathering of the work campers for a luncheon at the clubhouse. There are 20-25 of them and the managers Don and Jeni catered it. Rudy's BBQ and the food was tasty! Beef, sausage and pork along with slaw, potato salad, beans with onions, jalapenos and pickles. They also supplied drinks, beer,margaritas, soda and tea.

The winter season has started!



the front is moving through and we had a pretty sunset tonight






I love my flowers, don't know their name but they sure are pretty



looking northeast the palms are pretty against the darkening sky. Soon all those sites will be filled with winter Texans


Just heard Taps from the RGV Veterans Cemetery so I'll say good night






Saturday, November 13, 2010

Fall day




It was quite breezy and cool when I got up this morning. Even the flamingos were cuddling!

My guess is a front is passing through which is making it nice and cool for me. By 0820 the temperature had dropped 3 degrees from 62 to 59. Still 70 in the house and the blueberry muffins that I baked made the house warm and toasty and it sure smelled good too.



Last night we had attended a gathering next door that included the Anne and Scotty, Pat and Vern and Amy and Dan. First time this season that all four couples had happy hour together and we had a lot of fun!



Since it was an impromptu get together the food wasn't elaborate but the wine and beer flowed freely and by 1930 when we started towards home no one was ‘unhappy’ if you catch my drift!

Jim and I went out to lunch today enjoying soup, salad and mussels at Olive Garden. Since it was a cool day soup sounded real good to me. This is one of our favorite meals. I must say I stuffed myself but everything was so good!

We stopped in at Barnes and Nobles on the way home but we didn't stay long. Once home we just stayed in and spent quiet time together.

Dinner was BLT's and now that the sun has gone down we're sitting in front of our computers while watching TV.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran's Day

I'm proud to be a Veteran! Although my time in the Navy wasn't all that long I enjoyed the experience. I hope it made me a better person. My paternal grandfather was in the Navy during WWI. My father served with the Army in Italy during WWII. Two of my cousins were in the Navy and two were in the Army. David served in Viet Nam.

My father in law was in the Army Air Corp during WWII and was shot down while flying a mission and crash landed in England.

Our daughter Sonsearae was also in the Navy and Jim's son William is a Navy Veteran who recently retired from active duty after serving 20 years.

My beloved husband retired from the Navy and proudly served two tours in Viet Nam.

We fly the flag today in Honor of those who have served our country!

We've had some pretty decent weather the past few days and last night we had a gorgeous sunset



Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Exercise

We've settled in and we're beginning to get into a routine. As each day passes more and more of the Resort is filled with returning friends and new folks. Soon we'll have the weekly Margarita hour and it will be a noisy happening. For now it's nice and laid back.

A few days ago I noticed I had a backache that would not go away. It's been with me for several days and I've come to the conclusion that I haven't been exercising...nada, zip, nuttin...

So I wondered how many of you exercise on a regular basis and what do you do? I used to do some repetitive exercises every morning and several times a week some yoga. Walking is something I used to do also.

As I age I'm getting lazier! All the experts agree that daily exercise is good for you, should help you live longer....I'm doomed!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

party party party

Sometimes I think we party to much. I actually drank to much and blanked out a few nights ago at happy hour with friends. We skipped the Halloween Party which was the next night. Last night we went to dinner at Cheddars with 5 other couples and celebrated Carol Reeves birthday. The main reason for going there are the Pina Colada's. Served in a huge glass rimmed with honey and toasted coconut and slice of pineapple. Most everyone had this drink, to sweet for me.

The prices for food at this restaurant are very reasonable! As usual the servings are way to much and we brought food home. My biggest complaint about the restaurant was the air conditioning, it was way to cold.

We had a good time visiting with our table mates, Anne and Scotty, Diana and John, Carol and Fred. At another table sat Carol and Gordon with Pat and Vern. Not sure why they seated us this way.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

My Garden

Another front has come through and today was a little nicer. We've been having days with temperatures in the mid nineties. I think they're setting records for high temps!

Each day we see more and more winter Texans arriving. Of course that means more of our friends are showing up!

Jim and I had a couple errands to run then we stopped in at Chili's for lunch. As usual the food was good. Even better was the gift card we had for $10 off!

I did something new today. Went to a shooting range and learned how to hold and shoot 5 different hand guns. Two revolvers and 3 semi automatics. I've never handled a gun before so this was a learning experience.

A couple days ago I took some pictures of my garden. This year I'm focusing on potted plants! Last year not much luck in the plot I had and after the freeze I don't want to try again.

this little dude was on Anne's patio.....pretty good sized walking stick!
this planter was on sale at Walmart for five bucks so I snapped it up. I have planted cilantro and parsley plants and planted seeds of summer squash, zucchini and cucumbers. Hanging from the bottom are two tomato plants

someone left this planter and I also planted it up with seeds of cucumber, yellow squash and zucchini


on the left is a hybrid tomato plant that's doing real well, I keep having to cut it back! On the right is a bell pepper



this is the orchid Sonsearae gave me for mothers day, it has put another leaf on since I got it




my pony tail palm likes it here! If the wind doesn't blow it over it should do fine here





the pot on the left contains chives and marjoram, the window box has lettuce, basil and cilantro. the small pot in the center is a Christmas cactus that I keep nursing along and the pot on the right is thyme and oregano


right before we arrived the gardener trimmed back our bushes....the rose loved it!