Monday, January 24, 2011

Jump Starting The Morning

I was just wondering why the last cup of coffee in the morning always tastes the richest?  I limit myself to 2 1/2 cups each morning...a full three and you wouldn't be able to make sense out of anything I say.  (Heck...I barely make sense half the time now!)  The first cup is always gulped down to get the ol' peepers cracked open...the second half cup is to get the cobwebs out, but that last cup...AHHH...that's the one to enjoy while visiting y'all.  Hmmm...I guess things always taste better when shared with friends.  (Now watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat!)

I've got a couple of things to share with y'all this morning...(cool segue huh?).  First...a huge congratulations to two of my favorite reads.  The Domestic Fringe and A Day in the Life both just made the Best 50 Evangelical Blogs.  To be recognized by one's peers as the best of anything is always wonderful, whether it's for writing, photography, or junking, but being selected as inspirational is a remarkable achievement.  Having the gift of compassion, love and speaking from the heart are unparalleled God given talents.  Could I express myself a tenth as well as these two lovely ladies...I would consider myself fortunate indeed.  I'm extremely proud for them and if you've never visited their blogs would be the perfect time.  There's a reason they were selected and you owe it to yourself to find out why. Debra and Trish always make me think and even though I'm not too terribly fond of their case I always make an exception.  Invariably...I always leave feeling blessed.  (These two have made little or no mention of this honor on their blogs which speaks volumes of their humility.  I, on the other hand, have no such compunction and don't mind blowing Gabriel's horn for them!) Thank you ladies for always knowing what to say and saying it perfectly.

Second thing...need a little help.  I'm working on February's window at Winnie and Tulula's and I need some input from all you creative people out there!  Cat Daddy built a kissing booth for me and I need ideas on how to jazz it up.  I'm open to any and all clever ideas...short of putting C.D. in the window!  (No one would be able to afford his prices...he's such a davo!)  Just remember one thing when making suggestions...I AM keep it simple for this simpleton!

Just so you know...I'm still working on my idea for commenter categories.  Update soon!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Jumping Outta Bed

 Edit and Edify

These were the two words that were bouncing around in my head when I awoke this morning!

Edit and Edify

Do y'all think maybe God is telling me to sit down and shut up just long enough for Him to get a word in edgewise?
'Cause I sure do!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Jumping From The Frying Pan

The temperature has been dropping all day here at the North Texas Pole and y'all know what that means doncha? It's time for the great Texas classic...Frito Chili Pie. I don't mean to brag...but...everything that goes into a chili pie is home grown and by that I mean born in Texas including the idea. For the unenlightened, I am here to be your guide into the back story of this culinary masterpiece!

There isn't a Texas cook worth their salt who doesn't have a secret chili ingredient...legends are made of 'em at cook-offs, but for true chili gotta get your hands on a can of Wolf Brand Chili. (Time for a little history lesson kiddos, so don't go to sleep...there might be a test later. Just kidding...I just like to hear myself talk!)

Wolf Brand was the brain child of one Mr. Lyman Davis who in 1895 was serving his concoction on the trail to hungry cowboys. Word spread and he began selling it from a cart in 1924 on the downtown streets of Corsicana. It was so popular, he had to relocate production to an ice rink to keep up with demand. His pet wolf, Kaiser Bill, was the inspiration for the name...and the rest, as they say, is Texas history. One more little tidbit...when oil was found on his property, he sold the recipe and business to two local gentlemen. Some folks just have a knack for steppin' in it...don't they?

~Neighbor, how long has it been since you had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili? Well that's too long!"

We can thank Daisy Doolin for Frito pie. Who is she you might ask? Well she just happened to be the mother of Elmer Davis of San Antonio who just happened to buy a recipe for fritos (Spanish for fried things) for...are you ready for this...$100! Armed with a ricer, he tweaked the recipe and voila...Fritos was born and a fortune was made! can bet that other family wasn't too happy with their ancestor. Let's all give a standing O to Mr. Davis for giving us the first snack food. While we're at it, let's hear it for Daisy for hocking her wedding ring to loan her son the money to buy the recipe and for coming up with the idea for Frito Chili Pie in her kitchen to help sell the chips! (Lessons over...let's get down to eating!)

Like I could use home made chili, but if you want to be an authentic it my way! It's easier and downright man pleasin'! I ain't woofin' ya. Why do you think it's served at so many sporting events...hello? Did I happen to mention this is Cat Daddy's ultimate catnip? One bagful and he's putty in your hands...two and you're on your own sister!

First you get one of those little individual bags of Fritos (you know...the ones that say "serves 2" on the side...just who are they feeding....mice?), open it from the "serves 2" side, dump in the chili, add shredded cheese (while I would love to say the cheese is from Texas too...I won't, but I can't help but wonder why it's called Longhorn! Maybe I need to check to see if a longhorn cow can be milked!) and top it all off with onions. You could add sliced peppers for a little heat and maybe just a dab of sour cream, but please don't spoil it by adding exotic touches or even lettuce! It is what it is...just plain eating fun and best of dirty bowls! The only thing that might enhance the flavor would be washing it down with an icy cold Dr Pepper and maybe cooling down your full tummy with a bowl of Blue Bell ice cream afterwards (another couple of Texas originals)!

Speaking of Texas originals, The Sweet Pea Bistro was just selected as 2010's "Best Salad" for their spinach salad AND Chef Jeff as "Best Looking...oops...I mean Best Chef" of the Upper East Side of Texas by County Line Magazine. How cool is this? I'm running with celebs! Right now Chef Jeff is cooking a unique take on hamburgers as an homage to Uncle Fletch, who came up with the idea for this sandwich back in the 1880's in...wait for it...Athens Texas. People...I cannot make this stuff up. Don't believe me...look it up at the McDonald's Hamburger University. You didn't think the Hamburgler came up with it did you?

All this bragging...I mean talk of food has made me hungry. Think I'll go and muncha, muncha, buncha Fritos!

Until later...Bon Appetit!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Jump and Shout

So it's like this y'all...I'm relaxing in the tub last night having a little late night conversation with moi and it went something like this.

Me: I wish I could come up with a killer post to write.

Myself: Aaaa...just throw something up...who'll notice or even care?

Me: I beg your pardon? I've got readers and they care! They know when I do a cra-A-ppy post.

Myself: Well, who appointed you The Grand Poobah of knowing what they think or like?

Me: Easy...when it's a throw-a-way post...they just don't leave me a comment. I think their mamas must've taught 'em...if you can't say something nice...don't say anything! I was saying, my peeps are so great. I just want to give back to them something that.....


Just like that boys and girls...I got the great American idea! (It's a good thing it wasn't a real light bulb moment or I might be typing this with singed hair!)
Seeing as how this is awards season and all...what with the Golden Globes, Oscars, and The suddenly came to me that the ones who should be getting awards and bouquets are y'all the readers and commenters. Let's face it...except for a handful, no one would blog if there wasn't somebody out there reading and encouraging us...besides our families and half the time mine don't even do it! Y'all are the ones who take your valuable time to leave a little love letter and make me/us feel special and I think it's high time you got your due.

So here's my idea folks, (and I must say...I think it's Fab U Lous...if I say so Myself) I'm going to hold a contest for commenters. I don't have all the details ironed out yet and I'm open to suggestions...just don't suggest I forget about it 'cause that ain't gonna happen. I'm a woman on a mission!
~photo found at Place for Bloggers~

The simple outline at this time ('cause trust me...this could change with the wind) is y'all who have blogs leave a comment nominating your favorite commenter and in the comment just tell me why. Maybe they have been with you from the very first (I have some dear friends that I made from that first one), maybe they make coffee stains on your screen, perhaps it's just their sweet words that touch you. Whatever the reason...tell me. After I've had a coke or two or three (that's when I'm most jazzed), I'll then try to come up with 3 or 4 categories and based on what you've told me, I'll place their names in that category. I'll also place a Honor Roll on my sidebar listing each and every one of the names submitted. Once the nominations close, I'll draw a name out of every category, announce the recipients ('cause y'all are all winners) and send out little gifts. Don't ask me what the gifts are...I've yet to work that out, but I promise up and down...they will be worthy!

I'm also thinking that once I write the post opening up the nominations, if any of y'all that have blogs do a companion post on your nominee/nominees, I'll have a little surprise for you as well. I think we bloggers are way overdue on giving back to those who give so generously to us. I had a sweet lady say in a comment, that she doesn't always leave one because of the amount of comments already left. Are you woofing me? Doll Baby...there ain't no such thing as too many...too little, yes...too many, no! It's what I need, heck, it's what we all need. Knowing you are reading makes it all worthwhile and makes me work (did I just say!) harder to keep it fresh. Otherwise...I'm just talking to myself...and you see how well that went in the first paragraph. Myself is not a brilliant conversationalist!
So tell you like? If so...give me a shout!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Jump On In Polar Bears of America---The Water's Frigid!


A slightly frazzled woman in her late 50's was found wandering in a Dallas supermarket this evening clad only in faded Nick & Nora Christmas pajamas and ratty UGGs while clutching a mug inscribed "I'm a Pepper". The employees of Wal-Mart failed to notice anything out of the ordinary until she was overheard mumbling "Hot Dr Pepper...wouldn't you like to be a pepper too...I need hot Dr Pepper!" More at eleven.

In other related news, the overnight forecast calls for a low of 19-24 degrees in the greater North Texas Pole region.

This is I.P. Icycles reporting for Channel BRR News.
(Don't say I didn't warn ya!)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Claim Jumping

Thank you all so much for your comments, e-mails and phone calls. Each and every one of them is dear to me because of the love and concern that prompted them. While it may be hard to understand...just knowing that y'all are in my corner is helping me to heal...that and my faith. Knowing my savior sees to all my needs is humbling.

Silly as it sounds, one thing that has helped is going back and reading comments on old posts. Rereading the words and seeing the names of those who have had my back from the get-go was comforting. It was also wonderful seeing new names pop up who became old friends. I'm hoping 2011 provides even more.
I wish I had more to post on, but this past Saturday was the first time I've really ventured out...then the snow came! So unless y'all want to hear about my cleaning secrets...I got nothin'. I guess y'all know what that means...doncha?'s SQUIRREL TIME.

I spent time each night secretly visiting y'all. I'm sorry I wasn't leaving comments, but sadly the words just weren't gushing out. I did take notice of what seemed to be THE main gift this cameras and lenses. Seems photography is the new thing in blogland, but people I gotta tell ain't my bag. I can play around on Picnik with the best of them, but I'm just too old to learn any new tricks. Wait...let me rephrase that...I'm too old to want to! That my friends is the beauty of aging gracefully. One is expected to be a tad dotty, outspoken and outrageous...traits I intend to totally embrace in 2011. That goes!

I had fully intended to do a post on my lofty ambitions for twenty-eleven, complete with the word "change" to represent what I hoped to accomplish. Jakie's passing New Year's Day changed all that...and me.
While visiting blogs and seeing the changes that were occurring on them, I came very close to closing mine down. I thought to how on earth can I compete with all these beautiful photos and wonderful layouts. Who is gonna want to come and read some crazy lady's rants when she can't even take an in focus shot? Is this one of the changes I'd have to make to entice new followers? Was I going to have to rethink (and y'all know how much I hate thinking) and change my whole style of blogging to get to be one of the cool kids or at least get to sit at their table as a tag-along? Then it hit me...or rather I hit myself. Deb (I asked myself), when you started blogging what were your reasons? Easy question to answer. I started blogging for simple reasons. To create an identity for myself that didn't begin with Debbieanddanny (always said as one word), to promote our business, journal memories for my family, and finally, to have fun...lots of it. Along the way I found a voice and a love for words...not just in reading them, but in writing them. It certainly wasn't to create work for myself and trying to change my blog would require a lot of work that I'm not ready to put in (have I mentioned I'm a little lazy?).

I'll be 60 (gasp!) this coming May. Hard to believe I know...don't look a day past 55...right? Point being, at this stage of life...I don't want to change to fit in. I like me...maybe a little too much and I enjoy living the life I've been given. In the words of the great Popeye...I y'am what I y'am. I refuse to offer up anything less than the real me and I pray when we get to meet face to face, you find I'm the same person you've read.

To repeat myself, therein lies the real beauty of fear of offending. At my age, I can say what I want and do what I want and I double dog dare you to try and stop me. I'm going to continue to write as I darn well please, with my tongue fully ensconced within my cheek (or as a dear reader said, with it sticking out at the world) and I may or may not improve my photo skills (never isn't in my vocabulary), but if I'll be 'cause I want to...not 'cause I have to! One thing for sure I will be doing is not posting as often. I found by not being on the computer as much these past days...a lot more got done around the Casita de Trash...a lot more!
My epiphany really came while staring out the window of my office last week. I watched the squirrels jumping from tree limb to tree limb...never stopping to wonder if the limbs would hold them or if they'd even make it. It reminded me of how Jakie would jump when my oldest melonhead would pat his chest. Jake never stopped to question whether Joey would catch him or even doubted OM would...he just jumped and ran straight up Joey's legs to a pair of waiting arms and a hug.

This is the word I've chosen for the new year...JUMP!

In 2011 I intend to jump start my life, jump on it whenever possible, to jump and jive without breaking a hip, to high jump life hurdles, jump outta a cake, but never off a ledge, and to jump for joy. I don't intend to jump the shark, jump the gun, jump to conclusions, jump ship just 'cause the going gets rough, jump off a cliff...just 'cause everyone else is doing it, or jump on the bandwagon. Heck...I'm gonna try and be the bandwagon!

I may jump off track from time to time...but that won't be a surprise to anyone...including me! I promise up and down to jump right back!
Y'all are the jumper cables of this part of my life and if you care to join me...when I say say how high!

The sky's the limit!
I'll close with a little of one of my favorite songs and a quote.

~I could hurt someone like me, out of spite and jealousy

I don't steal and I don't lie, but I can feel and I can cry

A fact I'll bet you never knew, but to cry in front of you

That's the worst thing I could do."~Rizzo-Grease

~I have just met you, and I love you~Dug-UP (I know this is what Jake was saying to me the first day we met and he chose me.)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Requiem For A Lightweight

This is an extremely difficult post to write. Some of y'all may have noticed, I've been absent from posting and leaving comments. My little man of 13 years was not feeling well this past week. Knowing what was coming, I was spending every minute with him. I couldn't leave him alone even for one second.

Danny bought him for my birthday gift in '98. He was the cutest thing I had ever seen in my life....little did I know that along with all that cuteness, came the dearest friend I would ever be privileged to have. He was with me when I lost my mother, Danny's mother, the birth of my grandchildren and every time I needed someone to just be there for me...he was. Silently laying his head on my feet to reassure me I was not alone, never asking more from me than to be loved in return and to have his ears rubbed. That's it. No taking me to task when I screwed raising an eyebrow or judging me...always just loving me.
Mini-schnauzers are, in my opinion, the perfect dog. They don't shed, have very little health problems, joyful, easily trained and are loyal little guys. They live for a long time and in fact, show very little signs of aging until the end. This was my little boy in a fur suit....all 14 pounds of him. He developed SARD overnight and began acting differently. I told myself he was just depressed and it would pass, but I knew when I took him to the vet the news was not going to be good. I also knew that this week I was going to be asked to make a difficult decision. I turned him over to God and asked for His mercy for my baby dog. God listened and answered my prayer. Friday he was acting like his old self and I thought we had maybe turned a corner. That night, shortly after midnight, when I came to bed, I bent down to love him as he lay in his little dog bed and he just gave me a long look. As I climbed into bed and lay there listening to him breathe, I knew it was his last breaths. Somehow you just know.

Danny and I both know that he waited for us to go to sleep...and then he did...quietly and peacefully.

Danny checked on him at 1:30am and our little man was gone...his wonderful, huge heart just stopped. My dear sweet husband had to wait until 4:45 when I awoke to tell me. I know he hadn't slept worrying about me while grieving himself. We both loved this little dog more than words can ever tell. If you have a pet that is like a family member, you know what I'm talking about...if not...I'll offer no excuses of why my heart is hurting right now. You would never understand.

I'll be taking some time to allow myself to grieve and this I do hope you understand. I offer no apologies, only that I loved my dog and am missing him too much to think of little else right now.
We had several names for him and he answered to all of them....Boo, Mister Dog, Little Man, Jakie Dog and an occasional Dammit Dog. Danny had a certain way of whistling when he wanted Jake to come or if he wasn't sitting by the window waiting for the sound of the truck and Danny's footsteps. When Jakie heard that whistle, his little rear would sometimes get ahead of his feet to get to the door. He shared road trips, cookies, french fries and his never ending love with us and I was blessed to have owned (or maybe he owned me) such a beautiful little dog. He taught me patience, how to chase squirrels and what unconditional love truly is. It was the best money we ever spent and the return on our investment was a thousandfold. Good bye my precious Little Man. I know you're waiting by the window to Heaven and I'll see you there someday...I promise.