Showing posts from 2009

Kill the Chimunks, quick

The holidays are upon us and the thing I hate the most are the carolling chipmunks that radio show producers feel we have to be subjected to. I immediately turn off the radio when the rodents come on. (hear that? Mr. Producer... I am not hearing your advertising anymore).

Well it's good to get the rant out of the way. What I love most about Christmas are the lights. Unfortunately there isn't any snow here to play off the twinkling displays. But there are sure some excellent home light displays around. I will cruise around tonight, after a fine dinner with friends, and check them all out. Thank you everyone who puts up lights.

I'd like to wish everyone a most Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year. Cheers!

December Fourth Snow

Phew! I survived the monster snow that hit us hard on December fourth! In talking with the locals I found out it has snowed a total of seven times in the last 35 years. So I am very glad to have been here to witness time Number Seven. What you see here is the maximum snow level that was attained. About half an hour later it had all melted away. The Old Sage next door predicts there will be one ice storm later in the winter, probably January, with little icicles dripping from the trees. It's a little hard to imagine at this time. I was out bicycling again today in shorts and a T shirt. Apparently Christmas is upon us too. Freaky.

Earth and Sky Scarf

The Texas landscape is all earth and sky. The rich tan and grey earth colours at this time of year look fabulous with the clear blues of the sunny skies. It inspired me to create a wooly scarf pattern and then to share this with you all in as a little Christmas present. In the example above I am working with Ashford "Tekapo" a lovely New Zealand wool. It is a worsted weight and works up normally around 18 to 22 stitches gauge. And I have chosen two colours, the grey and the variegated blue to brown. Texas Earth and Sky Scarf Cast on multiple of 4 sts plus 1 (in my example 37 sts) USe two colours of yarn. Colour A: Row 1 - Knit 1 row. Colour A: Row 2 - P1, *(P3tog, K3tog, P3tog all in the same 3 sts), P1*. Colour B: Row 3 - Knit 1 row. Colour B: Row 4 - P3, *(P3tog, K3tog, P3tog all in the same three sts), P1*, P3. Repeat these four rows to create a scarf as long as you'd like. Fringe would be a nice touch too. Enjoy the pattern. It is very simple and a lovely pattern, wouldn&…

Granite Things

These are random shots from around the region. I am situated in the Llano Uplift and granite abounds. Repeated cycles of freeze and thaw have worked their magic to create works of art. Exploring the backroads is one of my biggest pleasures.

A gentleness settles

A gentleness settles over my spirit when I think of the new man in my life. Yes, the most amazing thing has happened and I've fallen in love with a beautiful guy from far, far away.

New love is so powerful and transforming and comforting and FUN! We should all stop each day and recall those heady days stepping into a new romance. What a pill!

Today's Quiz

Alright. In all her glory. Here's a quiz for you. My neighbour has a few fruit trees, most of which I can't see through the jungle around his house. I am told he has mostly apple and pear trees. This one particular small tree right at the road is dropping these "apples" right now. To me they are highly unusual and I would love to know what they are. The gentleman is pretty much housebound and deaf and so my dilema. If you can help me out I'd love to hear from you and learn more.

Sorry for the out of focus closeup, but honestly I can't find my camera manual. Methinks I need another coffee to still my hand.


Look at all the speckles! This is my first speckled trout or sea trout. I bet this is going to taste great. I just returned from a wonderful saltwater fishing trip at Port Mansfield. I wish I could've taken you all.
This is a general view of the rental appartments close by where we launched our boat. A sign indicated it was a no wake zone due to manatees. But we didn't see one.

These handsome dudes are the flounder. They start out life with eyes on opposite sides of the head but one eye gradually migrates to the other side. It does make for an interesting "Hallowe'en spooky" kind of fish. Flounder I have eaten plenty so I know how tasty it is. Spearing them as we waded in the dark was really fun. And yes, the sleep quotient suffered a bit.

Our bunch rented a large house right on the coast with our own private pier. A Blue Norther (nasty storm with 80 mile per hour winds) came through on the Monday, driving us back to the house. But honestly, it was time to eat …

the back forty

These two photos are of my "back forty" as I call it. And they were taken in early April when many things were still grey. Certainly today the image is very different. I have mowed half of the field now and just about died from the volume of sweat exiting my body. So now I'm waiting for a cooler day to complete the work. I use a push mower and the sunflowers are about 3-4 feet high so it's a duel to the death for sure. Round one goes to me!! In the top photo the tree in the centre is a lovely pear tree that is now bearing ripe, delicious fruit. I am so lucky to have this tree. I love pears. I have dehydrated a bunch, all that I could reach from the ground, and soon will get in there with a ladder and grab some more. If my skin goes green soon Folks, you'll know why. The other trees are pecans and in these "before" photos look pretty scrawny. But just as all the other vegetation over the hot and then wet season, they have thrived and I'm told will pr…


This is a nickname I've picked up and I think it suits me quite well. Thanks M. I am all over the place all the time. So now I am back to Home South. It is incredible the feeling I had as I levitated over the empty highways through the north part of Texas. As I got closer and closer to home it struck me how strongly I felt for a place that I was just getting to know. It has to be the people. I've collected up some incredible people, true gems, into my life. Here's a toast to them.

Home North

Well it's been awhile for sure but no one said that retirement was going to be a time to slow down. I have made my way north to Home North and am happily settling in at camp. The movers have brought the rest of my belongings to camp and if one more box of stuff shows up I will have to throw a tarp over it outside! All the buildings are full. Guess what I am doing for the next few months? Lots of people say they will come and visit and so I look forward to the laughter and stories that come with good friends. I may even have some Texans braving the long journey to try their hand at some real fishing. Come on up! PS. Now the Texas flag flies beside the Canadian flag on the main cabin.

Golden times

It was a lovely day for a drive through the country and to practice my gold panning techniques. My expert teacher didn't laugh at my slow progress and eventually I think I was doing a fine job. Unfortunately no gold was to be had today. But get a load of the nice places we splashed in. Yeah, I am in heaven.

Outdoor Bed Phase Two

So this is the next phase of building an outdoor bed. The mattress is installed and a weatherproof cover as well. It wasn't the fabric I chose or wanted, but there were issues with the colour wearing off with just the slightest handling and wear. So over the phone I had to make a snap decision and couldn't see what I was agreeing to. The toss cushions are lovely oilskin creations I found locally. And the final phase will probably have to wait until fall. Because the mattress is a little smaller than the base, I will build up some wooden rails along two sides. Also I'd like to make a headboard so that the pillows don't go shooting off the end of the bed. Already a few chapters of a good book were enjoyed in the new lounge, along with a little beer and some fritos.

blowing in the wind

no, it's not a catwalk, but Tika could be modelling the latest Milan creation. The Texas adventure continues. I got it into my head that I should have an outdoor bed. So here is a glimpse at the start of it. Mattress and a weatherproof cover are on their way.

Sign on the Wall

this little gem comes to you from the hill country...

little stunners

wildflowers abound and these are just a few that are profuse around the house! Little stunners in my estimation. You can find a flower in every colour. what's your favourite colour?

Old chick yesterday, new chick today

The Great Horned Owl mama is ever vigilant at the front of the nest. In behind her you can just make out the fluffy very large baby. These photos would've benefitted immensely from the use of a tripod, as I had to zoom from a great distance to get these. But as happens when you are moving and your stuff is all in limbo, you have nothing that you need and what you are carting aroubnd seems to be all wrong. I'm still camping in Texas and waiting on the closing for the house I've bought. How is it that I can jump out of planes, cook meals for 400 guests at a banquet, write a book, find a new mineral deposit, yet I can't sit on my hands. This is driving me crazy. I suppose I should be like mama and just chill out.

Happy New Texan

Hey Folks
Here I am just catching the last of the rays of sunlight. Camping out and waiting to close on the purchase of my new house. Yup I bought a rock house! It feels fine. Super fine.

Holy Day

On Easter Sunday I am cruising the highways and biways looking for my new winter nest. This image was captured on the Blackberry while driving. Honest folks. If the highway wasn't empty or if there was a black Angus on the road, I wouldn't. But a white heifer standing there. Wow, that would be some shot!