Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Last day in Texas!


It's been such a relaxing and restful trip, we've gotten to enjoy seeing family again, laughing and reminiscing, sitting around the table talking about good times, but we also have gotten to enjoy some of the most stunning scenery you could ever come across.

It's true, Texas has never been one of my favorite States but I think this last visit is kinda sorta maybe swaying me in the "I could learn to like Texas" way.

So we're spending the last night here, tomorrow morning we begin our road trip back home to Arizona and though we will miss the family, we are also eager to return to our own home. I'm sure you remember my post about being such a homebody, there's something about that wonderful feeling of returning to your own home, seeing the familiar surroundings and being in your own bed.

We'll be taking our time getting back, there is no rush and we do hope to enjoy some of the beautiful scenery of New Mexico and stop here and there, of course there will be tons of photos to share.

So I leave you with the last few visual memories of Texas and the promise that by Friday morning I will be back to blogging full time and telling you all about our vacation, or whatever I didn't get to share the past two weeks. Please remind me to tell you about how much I hate Chiggers. UGH....UGH....UGH! I'm sure if you're from Texas you know exactly what I'm talking about.

By the way, there will be no Slow Cooking Thursday this week, I'll be on the road and not sure if I'll get another chance to log in until we arrive in Arizona, even if I do get some Wifi at the hotel, I doubt I'll have the time to compile a post for you all. Slow Cooking Thursday will be back next week though :)

Have a blessed day and keep us in your thoughts as we make our way home.


If you look closely in the middle of this photo you can see two fireflies. There's one in the middle and one right by the tree.
It's been one of the kids favorite things to do at night, chase fireflies.


Living in Arizona means that everything I'm used to seeing is brown and dry so I can't get enough of the luscious greenery I'm finding here in Texas.


This next set of pictures I think pretty much depicts what we've been doing a lot of here, watching, admiring, observing.

These photos have become one of my favorites and I'm planning to have them enlarged and framed.






Have you ever heard of Bodark Apples or Hedge Apples? I hadn't until I got here, my in laws have quite a few trees of these around their land. I find them absolutely stunning to look at and apparently, according to them, the local horses around here love eating these apples.


My kids are fascinated by these frogs at the neighbor's pond. We spend many hours just watching them.


Monday, June 29, 2009

Happy Homemaker Monday - June 29


The weather in my neck of the woods:
Still pretty hot here, nothing compared to Arizona though but enough to make you enjoy being inside instead of outdoors.

One of my simple pleasures:
Reading a book on vacation, knowing that I don't have to stop for anything, I can read as long as I like without interruptions and enjoying beautiful scenery around me.

On my bedside table:
Nothing back home but here I have my cellphone and a book

On my TV:
Been watching some great Christian movies like The Climb and Facing the Giants.

On the menu for tonight:
Whatever my mother in law fixes? LOL

On my To Do List:
Begin packing to head back home on Wednesday
Another load of laundry, I can't just leave the dirty clothes until we get back home LOL
Plan our trip back, we want to take our time and stop at interesting sights etc.

New Recipe I tried last week:
No recipes while on vacation

In the craft basket:
I have my crochet bag with me and work on it when I get a chance

Looking forward to:
Returning back home to see my pugs, I miss them SO much.

Homemaking Tip for this week:
Take your camera everywhere, you never know what you will see and you may just miss the perfect pictures

Favorite Blog Post of the week (mine or other):
Will have to leave this one blank, I haven't even opened my Google Reader since being here, but I'm sure you all understand :)

Favorite photo from last week:

Crocheting on the front porch with nothing but the birds chirping around me.



Lesson learned the past few days:
That I need to find a church like the one my in laws go to. It's a small town church, everyone knows each other and there is a real sense of family. Wish we could find one like this back home, because if there is one thing I've learned while being here, is that I need that time every Sunday, I need that time with the Lord.

On my Prayer List:
Our road trip back home this week

Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses:

I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.
Revelation 3:8

Friday, June 26, 2009

The beauty of nature!


Every single day I am reminded of what a beautiful world we live in, all it takes is for you to step outside and enjoy it.

I'm blessed that my in laws live in a country home surrounded by vast land, ponds and all sorts of amazing sights to see, so I thought I would take you on a virtual tour of what I'm surrounded by daily.


I'm fascinated by the huge spiderwebs I'm finding all over the land, it's almost like a white blanket spread out over the banks of the pond.


I am not fond of weeds but even I have to admit that this Creeping Thistle is beautiful.


Wooded area behind the house....ok well it's not exactly a forest, but just a bunch of trees at the end of the yard.


I love dragonflies and I've been enjoying my share of these beauties around here. I didn't even know there were so many different colors.


Yet another spiderweb


Right behind the house is this white rock, it seems that it used to be a river or some sort of creek or something. But we even found fossils in that rock, of course the kids were ecstatic.



When we first arrived there were tons of tadpoles in the pond, the other afternoon we went for a walk and had to literally watch every step we took, these little ones had turned into the cutest frogs.



I'm off to enjoy the sunset, hope you all like the photos :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Slow Cooking Thursday

Mr Linky's usual linkies are not working, so we have to use Image Linkies, all you do is click on the green "Mr Linky" and it will open up the list for you to add your name to.


Don't forget to add your name to Mr Linky and a link back to your SCT post so others can come by and see your recipe too.

As always, share your slow cooking recipes but if you REALLY REALLY don't have one and still want to participate, then you can share any kind of recipe.


Slow Cooker Potatoes With Country Ham

Cook Time: 5 hours

* 2 1/2 to 3 pounds potatoes, red skinned, peeled or left unpeeled
* 4 to 6 small sprigs fresh rosemary
* 6 to 8 ounces country ham, rinsed, or diced smoked ham
* 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1/4 teaspoon pepper
* 1 bay leaf
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 3 cups chicken broth

Cut potatoes into 2-inch chunks. Dice ham.

Layer potatoes with ham, rosemary leaves, and sliced garlic, sprinkling each layer with a little salt and pepper. Tuck a bay leaf among the potatoes, then pour chicken broth over all. Dot with butter and cook on HIGH for 5 to 6 hours, until potatoes are tender.

Discard bay leaf and spoon into a serving bowl.
Serves 6.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Grayson County Frontier Village


Guess what I got to do today? Well maybe don't guess because I'm sure by the pic above you can see.

Let's just say that I was totally in my environment this afternoon. It's not the first and I'm sure it won't be the last time that I talk about my love for Pioneer days so when I found out that just a few minutes from where we are stood the Grayson County Frontier Village, there was no way I was going to let this vacation end without visiting.

Take a walk back in time to the days when pioneer Grayson County residents used hand tools to shape logs notched together at the corners to form one-room cabins, some with lofts for added space to house families of six or more.

I have a lot of photos on my flickr album, so I won't post them all here but I still wanted to share some on the blog and also tell you a little about each house we visited.


Thompson House

Judge James George Thompson came to Grayson County in 1830 and was the first county judge. He built this home at the tip of Preston Penninsula and it was moved to the Frontier Village in 1990.




Hendricks House

Jessie Elvis Hendricks migrated to Texas in 1845 and built the log cabin section of this house on land northeast of Sherman near the old Shannon Church.




Bradley/Bodkin Cabin

Thomas Bradley built this cabin around 1842 after coming to Sherman with his parents in 1838. He married twice and reared 14 children in this one-room cabin.


Evans Carpenter Cabin

Built around 1857 by R.J. Evans in the Cherry Mound Community. J.C. Carpenter bought the cabin about 1900 and added three additional rooms.



Country Store

A replica of a typical pioneer Texas business, it contains original equipment and other artifacts of the late 1800s.




Weaver Wagon

In 1934 two young Sherman women and their mother traveled to Colorado in this tin-covered wageon, enduring hardships similar to that of pioneers who came to Grayson County. Winnie their cow made all three trips for a total of about 4000 miles.


Fitzgerald House

Constructed by George S. Fitzgerald in 1866 on his 800 acre farm on Red River. All of the framing is hand-hewn logs fastened together with wooden pegs in the absence of nails.




Bullock/Bass House

Randolph Bullock built this house in 1850 and is said to have the first glass windows in Grayson County. It was later sold to Col. T.C. Bass. His daughter, Miss Nettie Bass, was born in the house, lived there 97 years and died in the house.




Cold Springs School

The Holder family emigrated to Texas in the mid 1840s and built this school house. Miss Maud Mangum, the first teacher, slept in the loft and ate with the families of the pupils.



Sophia's Cabin

When Sophia Augenbaugh Coffee Butt Porter came to Grayson County in the late 1830s with her second husband Holland Coffee, they lived in a one-room clapboard cabin.


Barber Shop/Dentist Office

An early day barber shop and dentist office with a display of furniture and instruments used in their profession in the late 1800s.



Newspaper Office and Saddle Shop

A replica of a newspaper office on one side and tack room on the other.



Lankford Home

William T. Lankford, one of the first five Commissioners of Grayson County, built this house in 1847 on his 1800 acre land grant east of Denison. He hauled the lumber by ox-freight from Jefferson, TX.
The ceiling was removed to make coffins during the cholera epidemic in the 1870s. The home was in the Lankford family for 124 years.




Country Church

This replica of an early Texas church is fully equipped with pews, organs, kneeling bench and pulpit.



Price/Shaw Cabin

This Texas Dogtrot cabin was built about 1860 by Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Price.




Davis/Ansley Cabin

This cabin was built about 1838 by Micajah C. Davis, one of the original founders of Grayson County. Rev. Sumner Bacon formed the Pilot Knob Presbyterian Church in the cabin in 1842, Davis served as the first elder.



Early day tools and other equipment are stored in this replica of an early Texas smokehouse where meat, usually pork, was smoked or packed in salt for preservation.




I had such a blast and I can't wait to sit down and learn a bit more about the families that lived in these homes and what their lives were like in the 1800s. Hope you enjoyed it too.

I'll have more fun stuff for you, I'm so glad I'm able to take you on this trip with me.