July 16, 2011


Isn't he cute?

So often when I come into our neighborhood these days, 
the ducks are parading across the street from the lake.  
Sometimes in pairs, but mostly in groups. 

I like to think they are little waddling families out on a big adventure.

So it came as a surprise when we discovered that this little duckling 
had taken a liking to our backyard last summer.
Sophie StinkerBelle hadn't run him off and he didn't seem afraid at all.  
I don't know about you, but I've had a couple of run ins with Mama Ducks 
and I'm no fan of being maimed by a nut job duck that thinks I've run off with her baby.
We have enough problems with the lunatic mockingbirds and the dive bombing scissortails.   
Magoo and I had to be extremely cautious.  Especially me.  
Magoo has a tendency to get a little weirded out by things that fly and peck at him.  
This causes him to flail his arms frantically and run off like George Costanza. 
I could be seriously injured.  Mowed down in the prime of my life. 
Must. Be.Very.Careful.

But this cute little thing was all by his lonesome.   
No family to be found.

We have a salt water pool, so we didn't think he'd be harmed if he swam around for a bit.  
He seemed to be having a fine time without a worry in the world.  
But where were his people?  
Magoo checked him out for injuries and all seemed well...and he was so calm being held!  
We couldn't believe it.

As cute as he was, we needed to help him find his way home.  
We took him down to the lake and searched until we found what we deemed a suitable duck family.  
Into the lake he went.  
We said our goodbyes to little Duckie and worried when he didn't seem to be accepted.  
Every day for about a week, we circled the lake looking for our little visitor.  
He was so tame that he didn't seem to have the proper skill set for being out on his own.  
We knew this because we are duck experts.

Okay, so we aren't exactly experts. 
But our oldest son keeps a lot of random data in his brain that comes in very handy
from time to time.  
If he read it when he was 6, it's still there.  
Like a walking reference book, that one.  
We didn't want the little guy to have separation anxiety or something.  
We wanted to keep Duckie for our very own pool accessory...but he pooped in the hot tub.  
Color coordinated or not, he had to go.

I hope that's you and your people waddling across the street, Duckie.  
Happy trails.
And watch out for the woman in the white Infinity...she always runs that stop sign. 

Where's a nut job Mama Duck when you need one?

July 6, 2011

Sighs, signs and swaps

I had a million things to do this week and little time to get them completed before I pick up our 3 nieces and 1 nephew tomorrow.   Do you ever wonder how you seem to be busy every single minute of the day- but not very much is showing for your efforts?  I'm having a week like that.  I'm having a year like that!

I did manage to get a sign made for the backyard, but with the wind blowing so hard it will not be getting hung tonite.  After photographing it, I realize that it could use a little more distressing.  Five minutes out in the heat and wind should take care of that!   I'd also like to find some sort of iron embellishments to jazz it up.  I'm going to stop in at a few shops on the way to Brenham tomorrow and maybe I'll find something fun to add to the sign.  I'm meeting my Mom and Aunties so we can do the "kid swap".  We like to meet at Must Be Heaven for lunch and then I generally browse the shops.  I will not be dragging 4 munchkins through the shops, so you ladies up in Brenham can relax.  You are safe.  This time.  ;  )

I think the sign will be fun by the pool.  And a good reminder that we are free to be happy.  It's up to us to decide how we get there.

 I finally finished one of the ottomans I've been meaning to paint for the last 4 years...I found them at TJ's for $40 each.  As I was attempting to get them out the NON automatic door, one of them fell off my cart and crashed onto the pavement.  Wasn't pretty!  The hinges broke (the top lifts) and the wood cracked.   I was not looking forward to stripping, sanding, priming, painting and poly coating these suckers.  Which is the reason they had never been painted.  I originally covered the seat cushion in animal print with a large monogram.  They were pretty, but I wanted to move them from where they were.  I'm thinking I should have put some embroidery on these, too.  A big cream monogram or icon of some sort.  Plenty of time for that later....I have four children coming.  I have bigger fish to fry.  ;  )

 I used Annie Sloan Old Ochre as the base and then added Old White.  These were maple so I really had to spend quite a bit of time filling in around the carving on the legs.  Tedious, but worth it.  I didn't want the maple to show through.  I waxed with clear, sanded and then waxed with a mixture of clear and dark. 

 I am always amazed at the beautiful finish!

The fabric came from Interiors in Houston.  Not likely that I can find more since I bought it a few years ago.   Maybe I'll get lucky and find a yard or two at their summer clearance.  Keeping my fingers crossed.  I love the texture.  You can't tell from the photos, but it's a beautiful herringbone pattern in the most perfect shade of soft turquoise.  I have this fabric in three other shades...it's such a classic and I never tire of looking at it.

So what do you think...leave the top as is or give it some embroidery?  I'm taking a vote.  Of course, I will actually have to risk my life to get into my sewing room.   I don't see that project completed until September.  I think it might be quicker to blow it up and start over!  LOL

Once I decide what to do, I'll post a before and after for the big reveal.  It's just too fun to see the hideous fabric you find on these things!

Also...I have not forgotten the giveaway.  My model ran off to Hawaii.  When she returns, I'll be posting something fun for a couple of you to win!

I'll be out until next week...after the return "kid swap" takes place.  :  )

Have a great weekend!


July 2, 2011

Thrills and Chills

 Oh, the excitement of their first trip to California!  
Magoo and I took our nieces to Coronado.

  The plane, the plane...the girls were nervous on the way there, 
but were total pros on the way back.

We went to the San Diego Zoo, cruised the bay, spent an afternoon in La Jolla and stayed on Coronado.  

We went to Oceanside, Carlsbad, Cardiff By The Sea, and Encinitas.  

We saw sea gulls with one foot. We watched Mr. Panda munch on his bamboo and the polar bears chomping carrots.

We opted for milkshakes, hot cocoa, cupcakes, churros, and Ben&Jerry's.  We are now big fans of  Burger Lounge and the turkey basil burger.

We bought lotto tickets and dreamed of buying beach homes. 
I had to promise to give them each a million dollars and 
buy their mom a beach house so we could be together all year.  
We didn't win, but we'll keep dreaming.

Did I mention that we ate a lot???

We watched as a miracle occurred before our very eyes.  
Anni finished her entire burger!!!  
And for the first time in her life, according to Lexi.  
This was a big happening, because Anni eats like a bird and never finishes anything unless it's a pack of gum.  ;  ) 

We went to In-n-Out.  Walked in and pigged out! 

The Drizzzzzler
The girls loved the sky tram at the zoo and one of them (see above!) giggled and giggled asking permission to drizzle someone from above.   She's a prankster.  
Grace Kelly meets Amy Poehler.

I hope the girls always remember our nutty adventures.

I know I will.

Like, let's see...

1. I need an eye patch!

2. Ewww, the seals stink!

3. My foot is broken, I need an eye patch, call a waaaaambulance!

4. The Cecily Emergahopp language, which I do not speak or understand, but Uncle Magoo and Lexi do.

5. Picking out cookies at Girard Gourmet.

6. Playing with and selecting our puppets from Geppetto's Toy Shop.

7. The candy store on Coronado and  blinging out with our grillz.

8. The escalator thru the trees.

9. Late nights snuggling with tired little monkeys and chattering until we fell asleep.  I need an eye patch!

10. Pancakes for dinner with a side order of Uncle Magoo's hair on fire at Clayton's!

11. De-nied!!!

 Cookies or Calamari?  I think the pictures tell the story.  ;  )

 The Drizzler tormenting her little sister with crunchy tentacles.

Lexi hearts Roberto!
And then there was Roberto...

For all of you Ali and Roberto fans out there, you'll love this.  The girls were dying to see someone famous.  We didn't want to drive to LA and get stuck in traffic for hours.  So, as luck would have it there was a San Diego magazine with an article about Ali.  We were thrilled to discover that she had named the area of town where Roberto's office was.   We hopped right over there.  Or as Anni said, "To 11th Street, Magoo!"  They were so excited and seriously...who doesn't want to see Roberto?  They wanted to meet Ali, too.  They hoped she'd be there.

Magoo dropped us off close to the address and circled around 
while we went to stalk Roberto.

Unfortunately, we stalkers were left bitterly disappointed.  
He wasn't in the office that day.  Boo!  
The girls were sad, but the sweet people in his office gave me 
his business cards and we took these photos. 
 (The girls abandoned their posts and ran off like big chickens instead of coming into the office!)

I hope you aren't planning on doing that with Justin Beiber or the Twilight cuties, girls.  
There can't be a wedding if you don't actually meet.  ;  )

 One day I shall come back for you, Roberto!

    See you next time, Coronado!