Monday, April 29, 2013

Compliment who?

I had a graduated student call me today with some questions. She thought "Who could I get to help me with this? My teacher, Ms H!". We talked and I answered the questions the best I could about online high school diplomas and what not. We then talked about what she is doing and I asked about her bothers (who graduated with me) and her two beautiful children. She ended the conversation thanking me for all I have done for her while she was my student and how no other teacher at the other high school encouraged her or motivated her. (I find this shocking) She stated that if it wasn't for me she would not have finished school. Heck I remember telling her she would not drop out and she would not get her GED. These were non-negotiable. And she finished and graduated!

Of course I thanked her, because that is what you do, and poo-pooed it off in my mind. But why do I have a hard time accepting compliments? I feel I need the validation from people but I do not know how to accept it when I get it. You see, when I hear a compliment I think no I should have done this, I could have done that. I am a my own worst critic I tell you.

This is one of the things I am focusing my commitment (remember that word from here?). I think one of my issues that causes me to have a harder time accepting is being vulnerable. I really don't like it. But you have to be a little vulnerable to take and receive compliments, don't you think? One journey, adventure, struggle if you will, is to work on being vulnerable which will allow me to accept compliments more easily. This will be a beast of a battle, but I will be victorious.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Friday 5

Linking up with Joy over at the Sowell Life

What has been happening this week in the life of Laura? Unfortunately not a whole lot.

1. This week was all about state testing. I swear I was more worn out and stressed than the students were! Now we are all waiting for the results that won't come until the end of May. 

2. Wednesday, D and I went to see Boz Skaggs in concert. It was an outside venue, at night, in the middle of downtown...surreal. I am still a small town girl at heart and always amazed at what I do or have down. Big Dan drove us. We dined at Iron Cactus and I had shrimp tacos with broccoli instead of rice. Yum-o-licious! Then off to the concert. I loved having a driver. Took the stress completely away. Sorry no pictures of Boz. Women walked around making sure no photos were taken.

3. Got the email from Momma stating Daddy had a clean bill of health from his cat scan. See, this time last year Daddy was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. He is the patriarch of the family. I am a daddy's girl and it hit me hard. D and I would fly up and drive momma and daddy to appointments two hours away from where they lived. To hear there are no new cancer cells is a relief! Now we are waiting for the 5 year mark to be called cancer free! All of the thanks goes to God for making this miracle happen.
4. Getting the hair did is a major thing. Am I right, ladies? The best part, other than seeing my boys and listening to stories and getting the roots did, is the TO. DIE. FOR. scalp massage I get. I just don't want to get out of the chair afterwards! Thankfully I am getting a massage Saturday.

5. Took Gavin on a walk last night. We walked his little legs off! Fat little Joe (one of his many nicknames) walked about a mile. He was leaving "pee-mail" everywhere! The best thing is that he slept through the whole night. Worst part is he took up my side of the bed including the pillow! How does this happen? 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Happiness is...

Today's devotion on my iPhone app is so apropos. 

So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. (NLT) ( Ecclesiastes 3:12 ) 

Do you acknowledge your happiness? Often times, we don't recognize our happiness in the moment but instead look back years later saying it was the happiest time of our lives. Take joy in your current happiness, even if it is circumstantial. Let's do a better job of realizing our happiness and not be a person who walks around happy and not even knowing it. What makes you happy today?
Download this app to get your daily devotions:

I have been doing some reading and watching videos on Youtube about finding happiness, being joyful and being the true you. One thing that resonated in me was:

We can not selectively numb emotions. 
We would love to numb the negative emotions: fear, hate, inferiority. 
When we numb the negative emotions, we actually end up numbing all emotions which leaves us without joy and gratitude.  -Brene Brown Ph.D.

Find joy and happiness in everything, even the negative little pet peeve inconsequential thing in your life. 

Today I am happy...
  • state testing is over and my class can get back to normal with more productivity
  • about the support I receive from Lt gives me even when I am struggling with myself (and him!)
  • I am committing (remember that is the word for the year!) to improving myself emotionally, vulnerably
  • I had the best time with my sister D last night going to a Boz Skaggs concert last night at an Arts Center downtown. 
  • I am making plans with my sister K to try to get together while she is in Texas.
  • tomorrow is Friday and I am getting an awesome massage Saturday
  • I am getting my hair "did" by my boys. I just love them! Meow!

What made you happy today? 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Evening of Moi

Lt is whisking his way on the interstate towards Austin to see his ultimate, favorite, to die for band Rush play in concert tonight. I am glad he has a friend to share his enthusiasm for Rush. I am not into them as much as Lt and Steve. So I sent them off with a wave, and off they went. Ok, I really was at work when they left, but I would have done that if I could have.

So with Lt busy tonight, I get to have quality time with me. I think we should all do this more often, really. Isn't that what everyone wants? To have an evening all to yourself to do what you want, watch whatever on TV (not just news or Pawn Stars), eat at your favorite place or food, or heck, just do absolutely nothing. Just to take one night to pamper yourself, focus on yourself, and enjoy yourself. Don't get me wrong. This can all be achieved with family and loved ones around, but sometimes being alone allows you to recharge in ways you can't with others around. If you are like me, you focus on other people and their needs instead of my needs.

Tonight is going to look like what tonight is going to look like....whatever happens will happen. I am not making plans (a miracle because I am a control freak and a planner) and just letting the night unfold. I don't know what the night will hold. I am sure I will be reading on my Kindle Paperwhite because has a hold on me!

What would your evening of you be like? What would you do if you could have a night to pamper/focus on yourself?


Monday, April 22, 2013

Food Wagon Bump

Frustration is at an all time high here. I know we are on the back stretch of the school year. We are one of the last schools to get out and that is June 6! Oh, mylanta, I don't know if I can make it.

Why is it when I am frustrated, upset, or even bored, food is my go to "friend"? Take today. Did the Devil plan this? I mean, come on! So my day started out fine. I was testing a student until 1:30. I had lunch, doing great on my eating. Then after 1:45, boom! World turned slightly off it's axis because it all came unglued. Not going in to detail, but frustration just shot up. So I go to the office just to get away and what do I run in to...a platter of cookies and brownies! Devil get thee behind me!

Now I am usually strong because I have a gluten intolerance. I stay away from breads and anything made with wheat. So walking away from cookies would have been easy, except today. So yes, I broke down and inhaled ate ONE chocolate chip cookie. Hey, I left the sugar cookies and brownies alone.

You know what, I didn't get that satisfaction I was looking for in that cookie. Plus I will pay the price for having gluten (sometimes it is so worth it...Red Velvet Cake from Collins Street Bakery). Why do I do this to my self. I need to find a new outlet.

This was just a minor bump. I didn't fall off the wagon, I just tipped to the side. I am back in and in control. I will not let this one hiccup make me give up for the day. I got this!

So I am send out the call. What do you all do to keep that chocolate/bad but oh so delicious food monkey off your back?



Friday, April 19, 2013

Day Trippin'

The weekend is looking nice: 70ish degrees with clear skies. Lt and I love to do some day trippin' and explore our state. We don't go every weekend because of his job, but one must always be prepared.

Here is a list of 10 things I would like to do/visit in Texas.

1. Chandor Gardens in Weatherford

2. Bluebonnet in Ennis: April is bluebonnets and Ennis has a festival. I am seeing bluebonnets all on the sides of the road popping with color. I am itching to take a drive through country and be amazed!

3. Zoos: Either Dallas, Fort Worth or Tyler: I have been to all three, but who wouldn't want to go back to the zoos. Lt and I went on our 2nd date to the zoo. He says when he takes me to the zoo it is so I can see my monkey family. I mean, does this look like I'm a monkey?

4. Bats in Austin: They all come flying out from under Congress Avenue Bridge. It is like the biggest urban population of bats. I hear it is awesome and I want to experience it. Even though this is how I feel about bats.

5. San Antonio Fiesta

6. Houston, Galveston and The Magic Carpet Putt Putt on the Seawall: This is an annual pilgrimage and I am chomping at the bit to get down there!

7. Floating down Camal or Guadelupe River: I have floated down the Camal with Arthur, Loretta and Heather. Let's just say this is a story that will go to my grave.

8. Big Bend and McDonald Observatory

9. Pick somehting out of History Here app and go there: This is a cool app which tells of historical places in your area. You can even select how many miles out from your area you want to travel.

10. Glen Rose and the Dinosaurs! We already did this but it was awesome! It is wild to image dinosaurs not only roamed Earth, but were in Texas! Check it out!

With nice weather happening, more day trips will be enjoyed. I would love to hear where you would travel to for the day. I am always looking for places to go.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

It All Connects

So last night I was at book club (I totally forgot and was almost late!) in which we are studying 1000 Gifts by Ann Voskamp. Last night we were discussing ugly-beautiful. You know, the negative in life. The struggles we go through. When I think of ugly-beautiful, I first think of my self-image. But that is for another post. What I learned, though, is it is the struggles we go through. Even if it is your children arguing with each other. Yeah, I do not have children, but I do have students and I interact with their drama lives and I consider them my "children".  How does this work, you ask? Well, it is basically, but not easy, to find the beauty, the grace, the gift God gives you in that moment: Be thankful for health, life, the curl of the hair, the color of the eye. Help turn from the negative to the positive.

The group discussed how this is hard. We are not "wired" this way and we need to rewire our brains. What about a phrase to repeat in those hard times? Could this help us rewire? Maybe. I find myself telling God "It's in your hands. I trust you." But what about times of catastorphes? You know like what happened at the Boston Marathon or even what is going on in West, Texas.

As you know, I live in Texas. If you are following the news you have heard of what happened in West, Texas. To us, West is an institution. We always stop there to get their home made German bakery goods. If you haven't heard, there was an explosion from a fertilizer plant in West which could be felt 85 miles away and register on the Richter Scale. What the what? How easy is it to question God and rail against Him. But even in the catastrophe, we need to be thankful and look for the grace.

Even though I am not personally effected by the events going on in the world, I can only trust in the Lord and His plans. I am thankful my loved ones are safe, the fire fighters and first responders for their ability and dedication, and for a community/nation pulling together.

I have a devotional app on my iPhone.

This was Monday's devotional but applies today.

Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. (NLT) ( Psalm 143:8 ) 

Sometimes circumstances happen in life that are outside of our control. We can't always be in control of test results, promotions, or computer crashes. It is in these times that we should lean on God to show us the way. This is the time to earnestly seek His will and being open to fulfilling it. Trust in Him. Download this app to get your daily devotions:

 Does it just not bring home the message we received in book club. While our thoughts and prayers are with the latest catastrophe in West, Texas, we need to remember everyday struggles and Trust in Him.

What do you do to get through the tough times? To think positive?

I am also linking up for the first time with Peacoats and Plaid's Bloglovin' Collective Hop.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


The definition of change is to make or become different. It doesn't say anything about the feelings change brings. There are some people who love change, thrive on change. Then there are other people in which change is not exciting. If anything it makes your stomach churn, acid burn, heart pound. This is all before change takes place. I fall into this category.

There is something in the air today, oh Lord. Sorry, Phil Collins was singing in my head because change is in the air here at work. As I am hearing about the changes, I am excited about the possibilities, but let's face's not here yet. But I am still a bundle of nerves. Waiting is not a virtue I have. I am not into deferred gratification either. Why can't things be quick and easy, kind of like a band aid.

I know change is needed. Change, whether positive or negative, has the ability to make things better, challenge us, improve us. There are two changes occurring and I am torn between the two. I am getting this change whether I want it or not. So decision time, and I pulled up those big girl panties, made my choice and am waiting the results of my labor. I honestly feel like I am hyperventilating and need to be talked off a ledge. Once I get the word, I will be okay. Until then, Tums shall be my friend.

And just so you know, I have given all of this up to God. It is all in His hands and I can't do more than what I have done. Don't think I won't think about it or give it back to God multiple times a day, because that is how I roll.

I guess what I am getting at, and need to keep in mind, is change is going to happen whether I want it to or not, whether I am prepared or not. Yes, when things change it can be scary, very scary. But I need to find a way to deal with it. Keep my focus. Breath. Pray. Believe in myself. And say...I got this! (a little finger snap at the end is good too).

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Cuppa Joe and Chitchat

In my travels of blogland and reading posts, I have come across Kayln at Love, Laughter and Happily Ever After's link up for coffee and conversation. What a great way to get to know other bloggers! So I am linking up and shedding a little light into who I am.

This weeks question: What are your two greatest strengths? What about the areas you would like to improve?

Coffee & Conversation 
Oh Mylanta! This link up comes at a great time in my life. I am working on some areas in my life I want to change. It is easy for us to hone in on what we perceive to be negative, needs improvement and focus on it. I also feel we were taught not to "toot our own horn" if you will, at least in my family. We do not focus on our positives or successes. Because of this, I have a harder time picking out my strengths, but boy do I know my weaknesses! The trouble will be just picking one!
If I asked my sisters, parents, LT, friends or co-workers, they would rattle off multiple strengths. As for me I don't quite see them. So here are the two that I see (at least strengths for me) and if you will allow me...toot toot toot!

STRENGTH #1: MY FAITH IN GOD. I know I do not mention my relationship with God in my posts, only because I feel when I am talking about Him, it'll come across preachy and I am so not that gal. But my faith is what has gotten me through so much in life. I married young (age 19) for 6 years before we divorced. Heck, I have been divorced longer than I was married. After my divorce God knew what I needed and what I needed to work on. He waited until Lt and I were at the exact time and place to meet (which was longer than my time schedule, but it is not up to me now is it?). Let me be a testament to giving your problems/issues/pain to God because it works. As you will read in my improvement needed, I tend to be a wee bit controlling (if you believe that I have ocean front property in Kansas to sell you!) but I do give it up to God and He has taken it. You just can't imagine the weight lifted off of me. God and I, we tight! (my attempt at gansta...don't judge, just laugh)

STRENGTH #2:  INDEPENDENCE. My daddy taught me long ago no one is going to stand up for you, but yourself. So I do not depend on others to get things accomplished, to fix my problems, or to take care of me. Oh, I like to have my hand held and have someone with me for support, but I got this. One of the things I am proud of is that I am my own person and I tell it like it is. I am not the type of person to let someone walk over me. If there is something to be done, or said, I am your girl. Don't get me wrong. I do not do it maliciously or snarky. Let me give you an example: At work, I am the one my co-workers ask to tell the office of an issue going on/not working, or heck just to ask if we can wear jeans on a specific day. I don't shy away. I am just the girl to pull up her big girl panties and deal with the situation.

AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT: I think the biggest area I need to improve on is letting go of control. I am a control freak-a-zoid. I do not know what it is about control that I have but it is a monkey on my back! Since my oldest sister D has the same issue, I think it comes from our father and how we were raised. Daddy always thought his way was not only the best way but it really was the only way. Growing up in that, is it any wonder I didn't pick it up and carry the family torch of control? I have a hard time stopping and smelling the roses. What? There were roses? Oh well, moving forward...let's go. Lt is has been doing a good job getting me to see different things. He is spontaneous. He sees a road and says let's go down it. I swear to you, inside I am hyperventilating. Stay on schedule! Don't deviate! Here is an example: We took a trip to New Hampshire to do some leaf peeping and saw a sign for a waterfall, 30 minute hike. He pulled in and off we went. I was excited to see this but nervous because of height issue, but onward and upward. We hiked through colorful fall leaves and once we reached this cascading waterfall it started to snow!

Now if I didn't let go of my control, I would have missed this experience. So this is my go to when that monkey climbs on my back I think back on that waterfall. Honestly, sometimes it works and sometimes it does not. That is the point of improvement, right? Continually doing the dance of two step forward and one step back.

 But it's all good people, I got this!

Friday, April 12, 2013

April Means...

April weather is cray-cray, huh? I have friends way up north in South Dakota who just had a snow storm and lost their power. Spring has sprung Mother Nature. Break out the flowers and warm weather!

So this got me to thinking about the month of April and what should be going on and decided to list what April means to me.

April reminds me of...

1. Out like a lion, in like a lamb or is it out like a lamb, in like a lion?

2. Easter, Palm Sunday and palm leaves. My mom would always make things with the palm leaves

Braided palm fronds.

Little Miss Alli and her Momma

3. My oldest nephew's birthday. OMG he is 12 years younger than me so I always saw him as a bro.

Little Miss Alli's Daddy

4. Festivals!! Arts and craft festivals in Texas abound in April and May. We had the Azalea Trail, next is the Bluebonnet Festival. I am going to try the Peanut Festival this year. We travel all over Texas for festivals. You can search your area for them. Best places to go for free! They always have things for the kiddies too.

5. Donate a Life Month. This is near and dear to my heart. I have two different family members who have had a kidney transplant and are doing awesome! One transplant is only a year old and the other transplant is going be celebrating year 7 in June!

6. April showers bring May flowers. And boy does the state of Texas need the rain!!

7. Flowers blooming. oooohhhh aaaaahhhhh

8. Tornados! It is tornado season and we need to be prepared. Watch means keep an eye out and Warning means take cover!! Don't confuse the two (most people do!) FYI: I love to chase me some tornados!

Aunty Em! Aunty Em!

So, tell me what do you think of when you think of April? I would love to hear from you!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

It's OK Thursday

Yup it is that time again to link up with Neely.

Its Ok Thursdays
Its ok...
...I called my mom twice this week for no reason at all
...that I am super psyched to get to go see Wicked Friday with Lt and D
...that I drank an frosty ice tea yesterday but today I need hot chocolate to keep warm turn your electric blanket on high in April sit and watch the time click away the last 30 minutes of work be totally frustrated and bathe in the negative vibes for a few minutes to survive
...that everyday does not go according to my plan take a breath, give your problems to God and let it go pull up your big girl panties, deal with it, and put a smile on your face to keep 'em guessing!
...because between God and I, we got this!

Thanks for stopping by today! I am really glad you are here. Link up with Neely, or you can share with my, because it's ok, we really got this!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Is There a Thunder-Shirt for Kids?

So we got a nice little storm blowing through town. The Lord gave us quite a musical concert with thunder. Don't you just love that sound?

Well, my students did not! And they are in HIGH SCHOOL! Each time it would thunder they would have a comment. Then they began relaying what their parents told them as children whenever it would thunder. Most said they were told God was bowling. A few students quoted the movie Ted and said it was God's toots (I really dislike this one) and others said they snuggled with their parents who told them the truth about thunder, lightening and storms. I even had some comforted in the fact we have flashlights (even though there is no chance of electricity going off).


They now make a Thunder Shirt for animals to wear during a thunderstorm. Wouldn't that be funny if they made one for kids and it worked? LOL. Since that is not an option, how were you comforted as a child during storms? How do you comfort your own child?

Small Town Living

I linked up with Heather at From Here to There for Home Town Hop #2 yesterday and it got me thinking about growing up in a small town, the good and the bad. Which of course led me to society today. My mother told me of a stabbing at Lone Star College. I had been at work and do not know what was going on, so I check the news when I got home. According to, a man stabbed 14 people at the college. This comes on the heels of Sandy Hook Elementary and Aurora, Colorado Theater all within the last year. I think back on my childhood and wondered did this amount of violence and at this scale ever happen way back when?

I grew up in the 70s and 80s in a very small town in Kansas. You can read a little about the town here. What I didn't write is what it was like to live in a small town. You know what they say about small towns, "everyone knows everyone's business", and, well it's true. I knew everyone and they knew me, or at least my parents because I looked like my dad. It was my cross to bear. It was hard to get away with stuff because it was always "You are Johnny's daughter." Crap. Busted.

Grain elevators in Spearville, KS

That is the disadvantages. Everyone knew what was what. Some examples are when I cruised Main Street with my boyfriend and missed curfew. Everyone in the cars would be yelling at me that my dad was looking for me. See this was pre-cell phones. I made sure I got my be-hind home ASAP! Another time was when we ditched religion class on Wednesday night to go to Dodge City and cruise Earp. By the time I was home (same time I would have been home from class), my parents already knew I skipped, where I went, what I did and who I was with. Busted again!

But there was great things too. Growing up, I could venture out of the yard to play as long as I could hear mom's whistle when it was time to come home, I was good. Ok, it only allowed me to go a couple houses down to Marsha's house, but that was huge! As I got older, my curfew was to be home for dinner when the church bells rang. How many can say they hear church bells every night at 6:00? Oh and FYI when I was in high school I got to stay out later than the church bells!

St. John's Church provided my
church bell curfew.

You could ride your bike anywhere in town. Heck I remember riding it out to my friends house who lived in the country about 5 miles! Of course her dad had to bring us back, but that is beside the point. I rode to mom and dad's work, the swimming pool, or just around the town because I could. Oh and don't forget to go by that boy's house that you were crushing on (mine was David). The traffic in Spearville was barely there compared to cities. It was so small you could walk anywhere you wanted to go. There was more freedom in a smaller town, but with that freedom came expectations and respect. Good grades, home at curfew, meet the boyfriend, join clubs, participate at functions both school and community and just help in the community when needed. I guess because it was so small and everyone knew you, you couldn't get into too much trouble. Don't think I was a good girl. I was grounded a great number of times and had the car taken away. I also got the privilege of weeding the garden at 6 am when I broke curfew.

Does this make how I grew up better than kids today or even make me better? Heck no! All I know is when and where I grew up, I not only had that sense of freedom but also a sense of security. I never was scared about someone abducting me or drugs/shootings or school violence. My parents worried enough about all of that I am sure. Maybe I was naive or sheltered, but I feel that gave me a great foundation to who I am today. Trust me, I am no longer the naive little girl I was, but it has helped me appreciate what I have, given me high expectations for my at-risk students, and never felt denied growing up.

I do not remember any major crimes that affected society then like it does today. I remember some cult incidences like the one in Waco, or the start of Desert Storm, but I don't remember any violence in America during my childhood. So what has happened to society? Why are people turning to violence as an answer? What was the turning point?

I don't have the answer. All I know is I am glad I am from a small town and had the childhood I did. I would not change that for anything. I am also glad that I moved out of the small town to better and more opportunities in the bigger city.

Sorry for the heavy, long post. It was just on my mind and had to get it out.

What are your thoughts? I would love hear about your hometown or a childhood memory.

These are all true!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Home Town Hop #2

You have learned a little about my hometown of Spearville, Kansas here. Since my town is so small, we shall travel 25 miles west to the nearest town. Take your self back to the old wild west of Dodge City.

Iron statues of cowboys welcoming you to Dodge City
Dodge City is about 27, 000 people, definitely bigger than Spearville. It is the county seat of Ford County and was named after Fort Dodge. Dodge City was know as Cowboy Capitol and lawlessness which allowed Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson to "clean up" the town. Dodge City is also know from the TV show Gunsmoke, with Matt Dillion and Miss Kitty. 

Did you know it was first a movie with Errol Flynn and Olivia De Havilland? Did you also know the premier of the movie was in Dodge City, Kansas at the Dodge Theater in 1939? There was over      
20, 000 people there, including the cast, for the premier. I mean, look at that crowd! I used to work at the Dodge Theater when I was in my 20s going to college. I am a big history nut (some would say just a nut) so I thought is was so fitting that I worked there!

Wyatt Earp and the boys patrolled the mean streets of Dodge City during the rough and tumble days of the old west, where cattle drives from all over headed to Dodge to sell their cattle. Front Street would have been Main Street back in the day. Unfortunately, where it is currently at is not the original location. Plus the buildings are reproductions. They still have shoot outs, stage coach rides and you can go to the saloon for entertainment with "Miss Kitty" and the saloon girls. 

Front Street
The last week of July through the first week of August is when the town celebrates Dodge City Days. During this time you can enjoy the week long rodeo. Also there are arts and crafts fair, a parade, a concert to kick the celebration off, street dances, and a medallion hunt (daily clues to help you find the medallion. If you find it and turn it in, you win $500). I drove up there every year to help my dad look for the medallion. Last year he was battling Hodgkins Lymphoma cancer (and won!) and was unable to go and look, but Daddy was able to decipher the clues. Alas, we did not find the medallion. Got the bejesus scared out of us with a snake though, but no medallion.

Dodge City Days would not be complete with out the Bull Bash! We always have to have a plate during DC Days. Oh man, I am getting hungry just thinking of those Calf Fries! You may know them as Mountain Oysters. Still wondering what they are? LT was a trooper and tried one but he won't eat them. That's ok...more for me!!

Outside of Dodge City you can still find Sante Fe Trail ruts. There is a sense of awe and even an eeriness to be out in the country standing in the spot where the Sante Fe Trail ran through. I still can't believe they have survived this long. Erosion is starting to take a toll though. I am glad I got to see them before they are completely gone.

Santa Fe Trail ruts
This is just a small portion of what Dodge City has to offer. Basically, I was whetting your imagination and travel bug about Dodge City. Thanks for stopping by and reading about my hometown. I also consider Dodge to be my hometown because if you weren't in Spearville, you were in Dodge. Ahhh the memories of cruising Earp. I'll have to save that for next time!

Oh and if you want to know what Calf Fries or Mountain Oysters are, just ask! I would love to share!

Monday, April 8, 2013

What I learned planting azaleas


Let me tell you how to do this so you can decide if azaleas are right for you. First your plants must be in semi shade. No full sun. That is hard to do in Texas, but I do have one spot that will work, luckily.

Lt and I cleared out the bed (we had to transplant 3 buckets of monkey grass in the backyard). Lt dug the hole and I mixed our soil with acidic soil for the azaleas. They love that soil. I hope I did it right! Then we planted our first plant. We repeated the process with the second plant. We want them to mix together as they grow. Afterwards we watered them with root stimulator. This is to help any plant establish their roots quicker. 

I have also learned about mulch. You need this to maintain moisture. But did you know that there is specific mulch to use? You need to use a pine mulch for azaleas (or camellias and hydrangeas) because it is acidic, which is what the plants desire. You also need to use a pH strip to know how your soil is doing and adjust the soil accordingly. 

This sounds like a lot of work, but I am willing to try because azaleas are so beautiful. Plus the plants we chose will bloom 3 different times a year! Bonus!

Has anyone else planted or try to plant azaleas? I want to gain as much knowledge about the good and bad as I can. I am planing to plant more so I need the help. What do I need to know?

Friday, April 5, 2013

Friday 5 Link Up

Ahhhh, Friday. You were my life line this week! So glad you have arrived and bringing 70 degree weather with you! I am linking up with Joy at The Sowell Life for Friday 5.

Drum roll please......

1. Went to see the Azalea Trails on Saturday with Lt and D. Lt took us all over the town, eating at Don Jose's (awesome Mexican food, well worth the drive!), getting homemade tamales (a dozen spinach and cheese, and a dozen pork, yum), and of course AZALEAS!!  I couldn't leave without buying two different azalea bushes to plant and I have plans for more! Get your shovel ready Lt.!

2. Keeping up with my work outs with Jillian Michaels (she's a beast!) and walking in the neighborhood. Sorry we didn't walk last night Lt. It was just too cold for this little girl! But it is on for tonight!

3. My spidey senses get all tingly when I see students getting success in school. At my school, we can have a graduate at any time. This week, a student graduated and there is a possibility of another one or two next week. They get so excited and a sense of accomplishment. We are pretty much the last stop for a diploma and every day is rewarding! I love being their cheerleader and task master!

4. The weather has turned cold this week, so there was lots of snuggle time on the couch with my Westie, Gavin. He is like a furnace!! I did not even need to get out the electric blanket to stay toasty and I love my electric blanket! Although we needed the rain, I am so glad this cold front has passed on by because we have big plans Sunday!

5. Water, water, everywhere and I am chugging you down like a fiend! Lt. got a 52 oz Big Red the other day from Race Trac convenience store. I took one look at that tall cup and said, "Bring It!" So during the day at work, I fill up my 52 oz cup twice. This way I am drinking 104 oz a day! Now to bring it home on the weekend!

Check out that mustache pen!!

So what does next week hold for me?
1. Saturday some girl time with LoLo
2. Sunday planting azaleas and maybe getting the yard ready to plant sod
3. Friday we are heading to the theater (said in my best snooty voice) to see Wicked. Lt bought a new blazer and he is H.O.T. Hot!! Now I need to shop to keep up with him!
4. Still trying to get our Putt Putt challenge on. This may be the weekend with almost 80 degree weather. 

I got this! So, an inquiring mind wants to know....what has been going on with you?