Skip to content

Posts from the ‘Home and Children’ Category

A cup of tea


There is just something about a cup of tea made properly from loose tea in a preheated teapot and steeped just right.

I didn’t grow up drinking tea of any sort–my mother would drink it when her stomach felt upset- but otherwise the parents drank coffee and the children drank milk–raw milk from the cows Dad milked twice daily by hand for many years and then with a milking machine.

When I married, I married into a family of tea drinkers–hot tea. The girls would sit in the formal living room drinking tea from the special cups–we each got to choose our cup for the day–and we would chat about this and that while the guys retired to the play room or garage to discuss–or fix–or admire–.

Then I spent a wonderful three months in Kenya with my brother-in-law and his wife–and quickly–after just one session became accustomed to morning and afternoon tea–there it was made with hot milk and lots of sugar. Tea was purchased at the market–with sieving s and twigs bought separately and then mixed.

We do not have a similar market here–but I discovered great loose tea at the local India food store.

There is just something about a proper cup of tea

A quilt for a little boy

boys haven quilt

Quilted earlier this week and awaiting binding, this flannel quilt was sewn by my dear friend Sherry from donated scraps. I used a simple loopy-do meander and then did the borders in a continuous fashion requiring rolling and re-rolling–not so hard with a simple loopy-dee-doo.

I always like to include a nice label with a wish/prayer for a better future. This quilt will go to a Boys Haven boy sometime in the near future. These are boys who are from troubled homes and who frequently have not had anyone voluntarily do something nice for them. This is an ongoing project for the local quilt guild–and I am happy to have contributed several quilts.

Next Door

When we moved from Georgia to Texas we were welcomed by neighbors across the street with coffee, orange juice, and doughnuts. We learned they had four children, two of who matched two of our boys ages–and we had parties together and worked on our houses together. We all celebrated news of functioning bathrooms and repairs of roofs and new paint.

But next door lived a woman in what was once a lovely house. It had French doors leading to the front room, a carport and a wide front porch. Unfortunately she did not have the resources to maintain it and after three successive hurricanes with a large tree falling on the back area, it was deemed uninhabitable by the city. After many long months it was demolished this past week.

While it is sad to see the home gone, perhaps we will now have fewer raccoons and homeless people sleeping next door.


Pink Snow

pink20snow-mSnow in this part of Texas doesn’t last long—thank goodness for this Yankee who admires it greatly in photographs and for maybe a week or two—but shoveling sidewalks before going to work/school each morning, stocking up for blizzards–this was okay as long as we had electricity and heat–but not so much fun when you had to go to school on Saturday to make up the lost days–and then the mud in the spring.

Snow here means treacherous driving as people here do not understand a light foot on the gas pedal is essential. And it seems that every time we have had snow we have had a significant hurricane.

But Pink Snow—it lasts just a couple of days and presents no driving hazards–just a bit of sadness as the season of the azalea flowers is coming to an end.






This time of year always seems to surprise us–it seems much too early for our yards to be in full bloom. I have three colors of azaleas, white, salmon, and pink.

Satsuma and lemon trees promise a lot of fruit—but my poor peach tree did not survive last summer.


Sylvia Weir Scissors

This week’s assignment was Scissors—a natural sequence to rock paper scissors. I thought about getting out all of my scissors and putting them in a pile–or perhaps taking a photo of a pair and then doing something weird with them in Photoshop–twist them or make them odd colors or in watercolor. Instead I opted for a closeup of my pinking shears–a birthday present from my parents when I was 17. So they are quite old–and I’ve used them a lot—back in the days when nearly all fabric was cotton and my dresses and blouses and pants were all cotton. Although I became quite adept at flat-fell seams and mock flat fell seams, these shears made my fashion wardrobe a much easier process.

Now they reside in a hand-made scissors sheath in a drawer next to the other scissors and rotary cutters.

A day in the garage

f1155779-mDown the street a few blocks over is a garage. Not just any garage for parking cars or lawnmowers and bicycles or Christmas lights but a garage set up to work on CARS or MOTORCYCLES. Built to specifications as outlined in our historic district.

One lovely sunny morning in recent months we spent an hour or so there, my husband consulting and investigating various aspects of the project on hand–while I took photos of things that intrigued me. Mechanical parts, bits and pieces, work processes and their detritus—and a bit of whimsy.

Here they all are:


Spring is here

My mother always used to ask what we were doing on Sunday afternoons when I would call. She was in Wisconsin and I was either in balmy Augusta Georgia (read frequently sweaty) or in upper coastal Texas where we have a few more ocean breezes (read hurricanes and tornadoes on a too frequent basis).

In January the daffodils and the snowdrops would start poking their heads out of the ground. Sometimes there would be blossoms in early January–those blossoms were surprisingly hardy as one year we had freezing rain–the blossoms were coated with ice and I thought I would have just brown withery things–but the ice melted and the blossoms still smiled and waved gently in the breezes.

This year has been an odd year–I have one azalea already blooming next to the camellia (which did not bloom for either Thanksgiving OR Christmas)

But now the snowdrops are blooming-=-they are usually first and pretty much gone by the time the daffodils burst into bloom–but I now have both daffodils and snowdrops in bloom–with more of them blooming in the next few weeks.

I”m posting this for all of my friends who are still dealing with snow and ice and dreading the mud and flood season.



No, not the edible variety or even the trees—but ROSES

Today the rose garden at Mcfadden Ward house is being thoroughly pruned–and the cuttings are given away to neighbors and others interested in roses. It is not warm outside–not even 50 degrees. Here is the pruner:


and here is the older gentleman who is cutting off pieces of brown kraft paper for us to wrap up our goody bundles to take home:


And here is what I brought home:


I pruned and clipped and stuck them all in a bucket, filled it with water and put it near the dining room window where most of my orchids seem to flourish. Hopefully I will have one or two rosebushes but if not–it was fun chatting with the garden workers and the other hopeful rose gardeners.

Tomorrow will be some photos of the spring bulbs in my yard–

Lazy Mornings


There are nights in which I do not sleep well. Some of that reflects my twenty plus years as an ER physician with lots of late night doings–and the necessity for getting up at 3AM for the drive to work. And then there is the back pain that persists despite several surgeries (although vastly improved). And so I steal downstairs to read my email, process photos, let the dogs out, and press the button to start the coffee pot.

After a bit, the dogs want back inside–treats await them. But after that treat Toby usually goes back to sleep but Dora makes her way up the stairs, nudges open the bedroom door and finds Glen still attempting to sleep. She pushes his arm repeatedly–she needs belly rubs–see her smile at her success.

What would we do without these dogs to enliven our days?