Summer Loving

I’ve finally taken a few days totally away from work this week, and the Wee One and I got away from San Antonio for a change of scenery. We spent last weekend in Humble, a suburb of Houston, with friends from my hometown in Canada (fun fact – the friend that we visited was my childhood babysitter!)…and we had the best time! We spent a lot of time swimming in the pool (I started teaching the Wee One how to dive, which was terrific…I was SO proud of my tiny baby friend!! :-) We went to Discovery Green, a park in downtown Houston (near Minute Maid park, home of the Astros) on Saturday to see a Mad Scientist show for kids (good in theory, but the execution was pretty rough….the scientist wasn’t great), and had a nice walkabout in the beautiful park. We also went to a pool party, ate lots of good food, and had a really lovely, relaxing time. After a productive and wonderful trip to Ikea (I love Ikea with all my heart and will until I take my last breath….love!!! :-) ), we headed back to San Antonio. :-)

After two days at home, we hit the road again and spent a couple of nights at the YO Ranch Resort in Kerrville, Texas. It was nice, despite the fact that it rained a fair bit while we were there (odd for summer in South Texas, but we need it, so….it’s all good). We spent a lot of time swimming in the pool (sad bloody trombone, though….the swim up bar isn’t open during the week – noooooo!! I loooooove swim up bars!), cuddling, playing games in our room….all good stuff. We did a lot of reading, took a trip to Ingram, Texas to see a replica of Stonehenge – pretty random and awesome! We took a bunch of pictures this week, and had a good time just being together. She and I have been discussing our next Fancy Girl Trip – and while I’m certain that it’ll be incredible, these little close-to-home jaunts are pretty great, too. :-) I’m such a lucky mama. :-)

At Discovery Green in Houston! :-)

At Discovery Green in Houston! :-)

 

The flowers at Discovery Green were stunning! :-)

The flowers at Discovery Green were stunning! :-)

I LOVE water lilies! :-)

I LOVE water lilies! :-)

My friends have this sign at their house...it's a philosophy of mine. ;-)

My friends have this sign at their house…it’s a philosophy of mine. ;-)

This is Maggie, and she might be the cutest, sweetest little pup I've ever met! :-)

This is Maggie, and she might be the cutest, sweetest little pup I’ve ever met! :-)

Living the life :-)

Living the life :-)

Even Merry the Mouse had a great time! :-)

Even Merry the Mouse had a great time! :-)

In Ingram, Texas....crazy, eh? :-)

In Ingram, Texas….crazy, eh? :-)

Stonehenge! :-)

Stonehenge! :-)

Isn't this awesome? :-)

Isn’t this awesome? :-)

Pretty :-)

Pretty :-)

Cuddling in the pool! :-)

Cuddling in the pool! :-)

Happiness :-)

Happiness :-)

 

So. Much. Happiness. :-)

xxx

Tattoo

What do you think of tattoos? I generally like them a lot, as you will know if you know even a bit about me…I admire them on others, I have some, and I’ve always been really, really happy with mine. I got my first one when I was 18 – it’s a dolphin (named Alice, thanks to one of my childhood friends and a night in the hometown bar), a Van Gogh sunflower, a smiley face, and a Canadian maple leaf. Each of these tattoos was deliberately chosen to represent some important things to me – the dolphin is representative of my lifelong love and passion for water, for dolphins, and for the fact that I grew up feeling awkward every moment of the day…except when I was in water. When I swam, or dived, I was like the dolphins, and all of my awkwardness and self-loathing disappeared. The Van Gogh sunflower symbolizes beauty and passion to me, a commitment to art and self like no other. The life story of Vincent is one of he most tragic of all times, yet out of great hardship and difficulty rose beauty and passion like a phoenix from the ashes. Vincent sought success in Paris, my favorite city, and lived his life like an outcast….not unlike good ol’ me. The smiley face represented a new beginning, one where I committed myself to my own happiness. I have faltered a bit here and there, but most days since I got that one added in 2000 have been spent pursuing those things which will make me happy and leave me feeling enriched and fulfilled. :-) The maple leaf is obviously an homage to my beloved homeland, the true north strong and free. I don’t live in Canada anymore, but Canada sure lives in me. I got that one at the base of my neck/top of my back…to remind myself of where I’m from, and that my solid Canadian upbringing will always be behind me to guide me onwards. :-)

This week, I added two more to the collection! The first one is a small, cute Eiffel Tower, to commemorate my beautiful trip to Paris with the Wee One, our tremendous love of all things French, and the gorgeous memories that she and I share. This one is on my right shoulder blade, and I love it!! :-) The second new addition is a honeybee on the top of my foot. This little bee is to remind me of the importance of working hard, of buzzing along, of trying your best….so that someday sweet rewards will be yours. I had them done by a local artist that I’d met about four years ago, when I went to him to have Alice and the gang touched up. At the time, we spoke a lot about schools and education, as he had a daughter getting ready to head to high school, and he had a lot of questions for me about secondary education. He has changed shops since I last saw him, but he remembered me at once when I went in this week (partially because he was obsessed with how easy and awesome it is to tattoo my lily-white skin!). Turns out that his daughter is a student at my school now (small world or what, eh?),and he did another brilliant job on me. :-) Here’s the proof:

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Cute, eh? My mother will be unimpressed, but…c’est la vie. The ship of trying to impress her set sail a very, very long time ago. They make me happy, which is all that really matters to me…and the Wee One thinks they are fab. :-) The pursuit of happiness is something we should all aspire to, don’t you think? :-)

Xxx

Lucky Star

I visited new San Antonio eatery Starfish last Wednesday night, and I can’t wait to tell you all about  my visit! I ended up there accidentally, as my friends and I had a different dining destination in mind. However, one of the hostesses came out and spoke with us outside when she saw us stop to take a look, and as the door opened, the most gorgeous smells wafted out behind her…and I was sold!! While the service was odd (too much crossover between servers on our table, unusual timing on food delivery, and a never-ending friggin wait for bread), the experience was pretty much incredible…and since this was their fourth night of dinner service since they’d opened, I know that their lovely manager Logan will rectify the front of the house hiccups very quickly. Here are the highlights of our meal:

 

I started with Bread Salad - I've never had Bread Salad before, but this very simple dish is one of the most delicious things I've ever eaten. The ingredients were simple, but the depth of flavor was incredible. Love!!! :-)

I started with Bread Salad – I’ve never had Bread Salad before, but this very simple dish is one of the most delicious things I’ve ever eaten. The ingredients were simple, but the depth of flavor was incredible. Love!!! :-)

Grilled Calamari - my dindin. Mighty tasty, friends....the sauce was divine!! :-)

Grilled Calamari – my dindin. Mighty tasty, friends….the sauce was divine!! :-)

One of my friends ate shrimp and grits - this bowl had a chorizo vinaigrette in it that pushed the dish to a whole other universe. A-ma-zing!!! :-)

One of my friends ate shrimp and grits – this bowl had a chorizo vinaigrette in it that pushed the dish to a whole other universe. A-ma-zing!!! :-)

Their bouillabaisse was extraordinary...just look at it! It was served in a very cool angled bowl (I'm a sucker for good presentation),and the broth....oh,friends, the broth....insane. The very delicious bread they served was unreal dipped in that broth. Yum. :-)

Their bouillabaisse was extraordinary…just look at it! It was served in a very cool angled bowl (I’m a sucker for good presentation),and the broth….oh,friends, the broth….insane. The very delicious bread they served was unreal dipped in that broth. Yum. :-)

This pork chop was one of the most beautifully-presented dishes I've ever seen....and it reportedly tasted incredible!! Juicy and flavorful, bursts of yummy in every bite! :-)

This pork chop was one of the most beautifully-presented dishes I’ve ever seen….and it reportedly tasted incredible!! Juicy and flavorful, bursts of yummy in every bite! :-)

The kitchen action - check out the jellyfish lights!! :-)

The kitchen action – check out the jellyfish lights!! :-)

 

Dessert #1 - fruit, peanut butter, some tasty cream stuff. Good,but not worth the moolah.

Dessert #1 – fruit, peanut butter, some tasty cream stuff. Good,but not worth the moolah.

Dessert #2 - Key Lime Pie. I know,I thought this thing - pretty though it is - was unlike any key lime pie I'd ever eaten,either. But guess what? It's earth-shatteringly delicious!!!!! Woohoo!!! Plus, anything that throws a macaron on top is cool with me. :-)

Dessert #2 – Key Lime Pie. I know, I thought this thing – pretty though it is – was unlike any key lime pie I’d ever eaten, either. But guess what? It’s earth-shatteringly delicious!!!!! Woohoo!!! Plus, anything that throws a macaron on top is cool with me. :-)

Dessert #3 - the menu calls this Banana Story, which I hope they change because that's a dumb name. What's not dumb, though, is this dessert: banana bread, chocolate mousse, brûléed banana....it was freaking amazing!!! :-) Don't let the name out you off! (Perhaps they'll rename it Leanna Banana in my honor??! ;-) )

Dessert #3 – the menu calls this Banana Story, which I hope they change because that’s a dumb name. What’s not dumb, though, is this dessert: banana bread, chocolate mousse, brûléed banana….it was freaking amazing!!! :-) Don’t let the name out you off! (Perhaps they’ll rename it Leanna Banana in my honor??! ;-) )

Dessert #4 - Basil sorbet, with a mint macaron. It comforts me to think that there might be a heaven...and they might serve this there. Otherworldly, my friends....for realz. :-)

Dessert #4 – Basil sorbet, with a mint macaron. It comforts me to think that there might be a heaven…and that they might serve this there. Otherworldly, my friends….for realz. :-)

 

Starfish is located on South Alamo, my favorite neighborhood in San Antonio. Here are a few pictures of the things I saw in their neighborhood:

The Friendly Spot - my favorite watering hole :-)

The Friendly Spot – my favorite watering hole :-)

I want a letter box like this on my house SO much...and I don't even have mail delivery to my house.

I want a letter box like this on my house SO much…and I don’t even have mail delivery to my door.

Few things are more beautiful than a secret garden! :-)

Few things are more beautiful than a secret garden! :-)

 

 

I hope that things go well for Starfish, and that they are super successful. Everyone there seemed to be really great, and there is a heap of talent in that kitchen…I was humbled by the artistry that went into this meal. I hope you’ll check them out…let me know if you need a date!! ;-)

xxx

 

Brooklyn Baby

I spent Saturday evening at home with the Wee One, sprawled on my bed, reading the newest Jennifer Weiner, listening to Lana Del Rey and playing Words With Friends. It had been a day – the dog got scared by fireworks on Friday night and did a runner…and I walked the neighborhood streets from midnight to 4:15am before giving up. Thankfully he reappeared at home at around 5:30am, but by then the night was pretty much toast. I spent the day painting my front door red (see below), and watching the entire first season of the AMAZING series The Fall, from BBC Northern Ireland…if you’ve not seen this one yet, rundon’twalk to Netflix and stream it now. There’s only 5 episodes, an hour each…and it is bloody riveting. SO good. Anyway, I watched that while coats of paint were drying, I started reading the Jennifer Weiner book, and then moved on and listened to Lana’s album. Her music left me wanting to lounge around outside of some impossibly hip pub, drink in hand, contemplating life, the stars, and destiny with a hipster in horn-rimmed glasses, skinny jeans, and a cardigan. The album sounds like summer, yet had me wanting to buy shoes for school in the fall. The more I listened, the more I felt as if I was in on her secrets, that together she and I were on the outside looking in on the popular kids. Listening to that album had me feeling all the feels, which is rather odd, as I haven’t had that happen in bloody ages. Strange! What music moves you, my friends? :-)

The old door :-(

The old door :-(

Midway through the process

Midway through the process

The door!!!

The door!!!

Ta-dah!!!! :-)

Ta-dah!!!! :-)

 

Last Saturday night, the Wee One and I drove up to Austin to a graduation party for my dear friend. It had been a hellaciously long day, and I was afraid of falling asleep, so I started singing with the radio. I found out that I was kind of loud and preventing the kid from sleeping due to my volume, so I was happy when she joined in. For me, the easiest way to ensure there’s no falling asleep at the wheel is by singing – and, because I’m an equal opportunity pain in the arse, I will also sing to someone else who is driving to make sure they stay awake! I have a good friend who I know probably still has nightmares about driving home with me from Austin at 4:00am, singing along with the old country tunes on the AM band on his radio *which he’d purposely picked thinking I wouldn’t know the words to those songs – fooled him!!!* I was jet-powered by a lot of beer that night, so my singing game was really on. The things I do for those I care for!!! ;-)

I’ve heard three great albums recently – the Lana one, Sia’s album is friggin DIVINE (Google her singing Chandelier on Howard Stern…you’ll weep, I guarantee), and Sam Smith’s In The Lonely Hour is CRAZY good!!! His voice is fabulous – LOVE!!! :-) I’m so excited for great new music – it’s been awhile since I’ve been excited about something like that. Yaa!! :-)

What excites you, my pretties? :-)

Xxx

PS: If Sam Smith’s Stay With Me doesn’t rip your bloody heart out and make you want to touch someone you love as you cry into their shoulder, then you had best make your way to the nearest ER, because you’re dead or about to be. Sorry about that. :-( That song is a heartbreaker…wowza!

Shine Bright Like A Diamond

I treated myself to a new piece of jewelry recently – a diamond in the rough ring. I’ve wanted one for ages, so I decided to just go for it and have one made for me a few weeks ago. It arrived this morning, and I could not be happier!!!! Loooove!!!! If you’ve ever tried to photograph jewelry, it’s really hard, but….I tried:

Pretty, right? :-)

Pretty, right? :-)

 

Ta-dah!!!! :-)

Ta-dah!!!! :-)

Here’s a description of the ring: This ring features a beautiful white/ silvery uncut, raw conflict free diamond set in a solid handmade recycled 14k yellow gold setting. The diamond sits atop a solid recycled sterling silver ring band which measures 2mm in width. This is a high quality, natural earth-mined certified conflict free diamond. This diamond ring is made to be incredibly durable and suitable for everyday wear.

* The exact diamond in these pictures has been sold. Another diamond of the same shape and carats will be used to make this ring. The diamond used to make this ring is .75 carats.


This diamond as well as the other diamonds I use are certified by the international standard for certifying conflict free diamonds, which is known as the Kimberly process. You can receive a copy of the Kimberly process certificate if you would like with your purchase.

The Kimberley Process Certification process was established to prevent “conflict diamonds” from entering the mainstream rough diamond market. The KPCS was introduced and established by the United Nations General Assembly Resolution. The process was set up “to ensure that diamond purchases were not financing violence by rebel movements and their allies seeking to undermine legitimate governments.”

Eco Friendly and Sustainable: This ring is eco friendly and made from sustainable sources. Because the gold and silver used is recycled and from non-mined sources.

 

I love it so much!!! :-) It’s so different looking, and so sweetly and beautifully made…I’m thrilled with it!! :-) It was made by PointNoPoint Studio – check them out on Etsy!! :-) I kind of like to think of the rough diamond as a bit of a metaphor for me and my existence – I’m rough around the edges, kind of awkward, not the best or the brightest, but…inside I’m still a diamond. :-) And it’s what’s inside that counts the most, right? :-)

 

xxx

 

 

Baby Girl

Yaa!!! :-)

Yaa!!! :-)

My baby girl turned 8 yesterday!!! I can’t believe it!! It seems like just last week that she was a wee three-pounder wearing teddy bear clothes (for realz, the poor little tiny baby friend!!)…but look at her now! She’s so sweet, kind, smart, funny, beautiful…I could not be more proud of the girl that she’s become. :-) We spent the day together for her birthday – the weather here in San Antonio was rainy and rather miserable, so we ended up heading downtown to take in a Matisse exhibit at the San Antonio Museum of Art – it was GREAT!!! :-) Here are some pictures:

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Beautiful! :-)

Beautiful! :-)

Another Tony Danza!! :-)

Another Tony Danza!! :-)

:-)

:-)

image

 

After the Matisse exhibit, we checked out some other collections in the museum – here are some of our favorite pieces:

 

Love these fishies!! :-)

Love these fishies!! :-)

This is a neon pink chair, and I can't even tell you how much I want it!! :-)

This is a neon pink chair, and I can’t even tell you how much I want it!! :-)

The colors in this are mesmerizing!!! :-)

The colors in this are mesmerizing!!! :-)

The birthday girl and her new baby Merry! :-)

The birthday girl and her new baby Merry! :-)

Pretty :-)

Pretty :-)

:-)

:-)

Isn't this just the best? Love! :-)

Isn’t this just the best? Love! :-)

 

The rest of our day was lovely – drink at Starbucks, playing together at home, a piano lesson, dinner with the grandparents at Kona Grill…movie night snuggled up on the couch at home, and a camp out sleepover in the living room. :-) I had the greatest day just hanging with my tiny baby friend…and I’m looking forward to more time like this with her this summer. :-)

Happy Birthday Baby Girl! :-)

xxx

 

 

Marigold

I have all sorts of troubles with makeup. First, I’m mighty pale, meaning that I have a tough time with colors that look good (and not whorish) on me. Second, my skin is über-sensitive, so I have to tread carefully lest I use something that I’m allergic to -I found out the hard way that I was allergic to makeup from Estée Lauder: I tried some eyeshadow and mascara, wore it to work, and then frightened the bejeezus out of my students when I began bleeding from my eyelids (no joke)…it was gross!!! It also took ages for all of my eyelashes to grow back (the Estée Lauder mascara caused them to fall out, too, no doubt in solidarity with the bleeding eyelids). I’m always on the lookout for new makeup that will work for me – and not cost a fortune. I might have found it in the Flower line, by Drew Barrymore. I’ve always loved her – I dig her movies, but more importantly I appreciate the unapologetic way she’s lived her life. I admire people with the nuts to do as they please in a very public way…I think that’s fabulous! :-) As she’s grown up, Drew has diversified – she has a winery now (that makes DAMN good wine, no joke!), and a line of low cost-high quality cosmetics. I ordered a bunch of things online, and so far I’m right pleased with what I’ve received. Here’s what I got:

I am completely in love with this lip color - it's rich, moist, and is true to the color in the tube...even on my odd lips. It looks very berry-ish!!! :-) Love!!! :-) Bonus - it lasts!!! :-)

I am completely in love with this lip color – it’s rich, moist, and is true to the color in the tube…even on my odd lips. It looks very berry-ish!!! :-) Love!!! :-) Bonus – it lasts!!! :-)

This one - Tender Tuberose - is positively stunning!! I love the richness of the color, and the lasting power. Yaa!!! :-)

This one – Tender Tuberose – is positively stunning!! I love the richness of the color, and the lasting power. Yaa!!! :-)

I ought to be better at wearing blush - I need it because I'm so pale! However, I fret that I go from rosy glow to street walking whore far too quickly, so....I get nervous. As well, I've always feared using bronzer for contouring purposes, even though I need it badly. I tried this duo out this morning, and good news: I resemble neither whore nor pumpkin! Woohoo!! :-)

I ought to be better at wearing blush – I need it because I’m so pale! However, I fret that I go from rosy glow to street walking whore far too quickly, so….I get nervous. As well, I’ve always feared using bronzer for contouring purposes, even though I need it badly. I tried this duo out this morning, and good news: I resemble neither whore nor pumpkin! Woohoo!! :-)

This palette is on my eyes today....and it's pretty great! I think my eyes are probably my best feature, so I try to play them up as much as possible. I also ordered a really good black eyeliner from Flower, and it used in combination with this palette has really upped my eye game today!! That plummy color in the corner? Dy-no-mite, friends! :-)

This palette is on my eyes today….and it’s pretty great! I think my eyes are probably my best feature, so I try to play them up as much as possible. I also ordered a really good black eyeliner from Flower, and it used in combination with this palette has really upped my eye game today!! That plummy color in the corner? Dy-no-mite, friends! :-)

Haven't tried this yet, but I will give 'er a go tomorrow. I love the sandy colors, they remind me of a palette that Revlon used to do that I looooved!! I'm planning to use the darkest color to really smoke things up on my eyes. What do you think? :-)

Haven’t tried this yet, but I will give ‘er a go tomorrow. I love the sandy colors, they remind me of a palette that Revlon used to do that I looooved!! I’m planning to use the darkest color to really smoke things up on my eyes. What do you think? :-)

 

All in all, I think that some of these Flower products are going to be fun to use, and a nice, inexpensive change to mix things up this summer. I won’t give up on my staples (I’m talking to you, Chanel foundation and lipstick #45), but I’m excited to experiment with fun colors for summer. Thanks Drew!!! :-)

xxx

 

Simple Stuff

My boss’s daughter got married this past weekend, and I played the piano for her wedding. Fifteen years ago this would have been a minor situation, as I played the piano all the time and was accustomed to playing for people. However, I don’t get to practice nearly as often as I’d like, and my poor left wrist has deteriorated so much that I never know from day to day what feeling – if any – I will have in my fingers. FYI – playing with numb fingers is much harder and less fun than it sounds. Anyway, I’ve been practicing, and I played for the ceremony on Saturday. Clearly, this was not an engagement I wanted to bomb (boss’s daughter and all that) – and I’m happy to report that I didn’t screw it up. Was it my best performance? Nope…but it was okay. :-) I survived….and hopefully nobody noticed my wee mess-ups. :-)

I want to talk about the wedding itself for a minute….I do think it might have been the most lovely wedding I’ve ever been to! :-) There was nothing over-the-top about it – everything was simple, tasteful, and sweet. From my spot at the piano, I could see  the groom’s face as he said his vows, and I’ve never seen such sincerity or raw emotion in my life. It was really emotional, and I ended up weepy myself. It was awesome! :-) The ceremony was performed by a pair of older gentlemen who bore more than a passing resemblance to Waldorf and Statler from The Muppets – they had the witty banter, the sweet way about them….we all giggled throughout the beautiful ceremony.

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I was really struck by the romantic simplicity of this wedding – every detail had a beautiful, sweet, homemade vibe to it, and I felt like I was being embraced by love the whole time. I know that this sounds all mighty hippie-ish, but…there was something very different about this wedding. I felt the love…and that’s not something that happens often. Here’s some pictures:

This is so cute! :-)

This is so cute! :-)

The bride and groom are artistic, creative people :-)

The bride and groom are artistic, creative people :-)

They had wedding-themed Mad Libs on the tables...Wed Libs!!! Loooooved this!!! :-)

They had wedding-themed Mad Libs on the tables…Wed Libs!!! Loooooved this!!! :-)

Pretty :-)

Pretty :-)

The piano :-)

The piano :-)

Where I played my part :-)

Where I played my part :-)

All I need is love :-)

All I need is love :-)

:-)

:-)

The father of the bride made this cake - awesome or what??! :-)

The father of the bride made this cake – awesome or what??! :-)

One of my thank you gifts for taking part in the wedding - cute, eh? :-)

One of my thank you gifts for taking part in the wedding – cute, eh? :-)

My other thank you gift - yum yum yummy!!!! :-)

My other thank you gift – yum yum yummy!!!! :-)

 

 

I loved this wedding, and I wish the happy couple so much love and happiness….may he always look at her the way he did on Saturday – and may we all be lucky enough to be loved like that.  :-)

xxx

Summertime

…and the living is easy! Well, it will be once I go on vacation time and am away from work for a bit! :-) I’m really loving our summer schedule, though, as it offers more time for a real life, and there’s not many evening events. Woohoo!!! :-) Last Friday, I took the Wee One and met some dear friends for a picnic at Boerne City Lake. I had never been there before, but I had such a gorgeous time, I can’t wait to go back!!! :-)  These sweet friends of mine were kind enough to take care of all of the details – and what glorious details they were!!! They barbecued chicken on skewers, hot dogs, had wine/beer/wine cocktails/soda/water, chips, snacks, veggies…it was AMAZING!!!! :-) They also invited another friend of ours who has a little girl close in age to the Wee One – they played in the water and had a whale of a time! :-) The girls got taken out in the boat to do a wee spot of fishing, while I lounged around on shore enjoying the day and the beautiful breeze. It really was one of the very best days I can recall having in AGES, and I love and appreciate my friends so much for planning something so lovely for all of us. :-) I am so lucky! :-)  Here are some pictures:

Paradise :-)

Paradise :-)

Adorable :-)

Adorable :-)

The best hot dog EVER!!! :-)

The best hot dog EVER!!! :-)

:-)

:-)

 

This gorgeous day reminded me so much of my childhood, and the very best times I had then. My family had a tiny little cabin on the lake near our hometown in Canada, and that place, to me, was heaven. It was by no means fancy (as evidenced by the outhouse in the yard and the lack of running water and telephone inside), but truly – those things were a big part of what made it so awesome! :-)We used to go out there and stay for weekends, or a week at a time…and I loved it so much! I would spend most of the day swimming and playing in the lake, reading in the sand, wandering around and hanging out with whichever other kids happened to be down there at the time, and playing board games. My lifelong love and obsession with Clue came out of time spent at the cabin. In the evenings, we’d have a bonfire and sit around outside with whoever…and it was awesome. I never slept so well in my life as I did there…the combination of the sun, the fresh air, all of the swimming and playing, and the magic mattress on my bottom bunk were all I needed for a great sleep. :-) My memories of the cabin are so vivid – I remember everything that I did there, especially the time I put my brother’s underpants on my head and danced around in front of him and some company that he had…which resulted in him hitting me, me falling over, smashing my head into a magazine rack, and pushing my letter L earring 3/4 of the way through my ear. The doctor was down the road at his cabin, so he came to help my parents remove it. It wasn’t pretty. :-(

As I got older, my family quit going to the cabin – once I could drive, though, I went all the time. My friends and I used to love going out there, lounging around with no one to call us or bug us for anything…it was so peaceful. :-) I was heartbroken when my parents sold the cabin when I was in university, but I was is in no position in my life to maintain it, so….I understood their decision. It has since been torn down, with a new property built on that lot – I drove by a few years ago on my way to see one of my girlfriends at her family’s place. (Fun Fact: That same sweet friend of mine was there the night of the underwear and the letter L earring – I’m sure she’s still traumatized by me, my stupidity, and my howling) While driving by, I pulled off the road for a minute, stepped out of the car, and put my feet on the ground that had been such a big part of my life for so long. I marveled at all of the beautiful changes around me, and heard the sound of children laughing and playing down by the water…it sounded like the echo of me in the distance, and I swear I could smell the wieners cooking over the bonfire, and the can of Heinz pork and beans heating on the little stove. :-)

 

xxx

 

Strawberry Wine

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I visited a cool place the other night – Wine101 – in Helotes…it was GREAT!! :-) A coworker of mine is a member there (which is cool – you pay a monthly fee, get a few bottles of wine, your own glass, discounts on additional purchases, and invitations to tasting events. Sweet, eh? :-) ), and we met for some good wine and a visit. Here’s what the place looks like:

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I’m a lover of white wine in the summer, especially Sauvignon Blanc. Some of my current favorites are the Franciscan Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc and the Lake Chalice Marlborough SB. Yummy!! I’m still a Pinot Grigio girl, and have had a few great ones lately – the Altanuta Pinot Grigio, Danzante, and the other worldly Santa Margherita PG!! Divine!!! :-)

If you happen to be in Helotes, check out Wine101…it’s a cool way to spend an evening. If you fancy company, give me a shout – I’m in!!! :-)

Xxx