Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Relative Size and What's Happenin'

My friend, Dianne...the one I've talked about before. My mother used to say we've known each other since before we were born. Well, Di sent me this and I found it totally interesting.

Most of us have an idea of the relative size of the planets and sun, but it's rather dazzling to see it presented this way:

Wow, what did you think of that? Just goes to show how small we are when compared to God's universe.

Today was an interesting day. I started an a third blood pressure pill because the doctor didn't think the low 140's/high 130's was low enough. It's a diuretic so I must take potassium because of that little seizure I had about 12 years ago. So, anyway, we got up and went to get my hair cut and then to Sewing World in Fort Worth so that my Brother Innovis 4000D could be cleaned before it's first year ran out (this Saturday).
Then we went to Kites Cleaners to get Father Phelps vestments and to Kincaids for a hamburger.
Then we went to Barnes and Noble for a bag-full of books and on to Central Market for WONDERFUL food.
And what I didn't tell yet is that we booked a Cruise to Alaska for next August. It's through the Dallas Classical music station WRR (listen online). We've traveled around the USA a lot, as some of you know, but this will be our first cruise...and, oh, first we go to Vancouver, so Violette, watch out, we are coming two days early so we can meet you!!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Secret Challenge Meme

Lisa at Joyful Noise Christian School challenged us to the following quiz, which is known as the Farkleberry Five. It was sent to Farkleberry by Yen. The challenge is to list 5 little known things about yourself. Here are mine.

  1. I have a scar on the palm of my right hand where I fell on the floor furnace as a child...while running away from my daddy because I had misbehaved. I could add the next to as two more, but they are the same thing, sort of. I have a scar on my right eyebrow where I ran into the edge of the door. Why? Because I had misbehaved, and I was running from my father. AND. I have a scar on my back where I cut it on the pick up while trying to get out of the bed of the truck...WHY...well, you know the reason. BTW, if any of you remember the song, Daddy's Hands, it is very much about my daddy. He loved me when I was good, and he paddled me when I wasn't. He was a wonderful daddy! I, however, misbehaved A LOT!
  2. Once I was standing in the kitchen of an old house I lived in in the country when a mouse ran across my feet. I thought I would probably get rabies!
  3. I was a barrel racer as a child and youth. My daddy was a cowboy, and we rodeoed all the time. My best friend, Dianne, and I played cowboys and Indians on horseback a lot. We had fun!!!!!!
  4. My boyfriend in 3rd grade, Jerry Beason...yep, Lisa, I remember his name, too, skipped school to go smoke grape vines at the river. He came back into the school after it was over. My mother and I were visiting with my teacher, and I turned around and punched him in the nose...knocked him down. I don't remember the consequences of this action.
  5. In 8th grade my girlfriend, Pat's, father was our history teacher. She and I were office aides, and she had not done her homework. She asked to copy mine, and I let her, and he caught us. I was so embarrassed...she wasn't, as I recall.
So, now you know some deep, dark secrets. BTW, Dianne and are still very close friends!!!!

Monday, January 29, 2007

How Much Have I Changed??

As you can see from the above photo, Raf and I have both changed in 30 years!! But taking this survey from Susan's DesertSky Quilting blog, it seems in the last 10 years I've only changed 16%! WooHoo!! However I NEVER looked like the photo below!

You've Changed 16% in 10 Years

You've hardly changed in ten years, from your lifestyle to those very retro clothes.

And unless you were really ahead of your time, you probably need to acquaint yourself with the modern world!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Tom Basham Came to Visit

What a nice day we had. Tom Basham from San Diego met us at church this morning. He's one of Raf's rmmga ( friends. Poor man had to sit through our annual parish meeting (Raf was elected delegate to the Diocesan Convention, and I was elected alternate; I was also elected to the Vestry).

After church (there was a finger-food dinner), we came back home, and Raf and Tom got out the guitars and played and sang while I typed up the minutes of the parish meeting.

Tom has wonderful memories of going to Possum Kingdom Lake with his grandfather and uncles when he was a child, so we drove out to PK so that he could see it again. It was a beautiful day, and we ate an early supper at Possum Hollow on the west side of the lake.
After supper Raf took a photo of Tom in front of the lake. We had a lovely drive home, the sky was blue and orange and the hills were misty, and then Tom headed back to Dallas where he is attending a convention.
Got back in time to watch The Royal Academy on PBS, about a 74-year-old artist who was fighting for acceptance by the Royal Academy of Art in England.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

I Didn't Blog Yesterday

Nope, I didn't blog yesterday, and I can't even tell you why. I did draw...just haven't scanned. And today I finished embroidering on the I will hopefully pin it Monday and begin quilting. I did make 3 ATC's for Glitter Sisters today, too. AND .....

I used the treadmill for the first time 3 weeks, or since the blood pressure when through the roof.

Tonight we are going to Louise and Jim's for supper...and Barney and Margaret are coming, too, so I guess I'd better get ready.

Tomorrow is our parish meeting...Tom Basham is coming to visit...and we're going to Graham as Kathi and kids are to be

That's all for now, folks.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul

Today is the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul

Paul’s entire life can be explained in terms of one experience—his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus. In an instant, he saw that all the zeal of his dynamic personality was being wasted, like the strength of a boxer swinging wildly. Perhaps he had never seen Jesus, who was only a few years older. But he had acquired a zealot’s hatred of all Jesus stood for, as he began to harass the Church: “...entering house after house and dragging out men and women, he handed them over for imprisonment” (Acts 8:3b). Now he himself was “entered,” possessed, all his energy harnessed to one goal—being a slave of Christ in the ministry of reconciliation, an instrument to help others experience the one Savior.

One sentence determined his theology: “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting” (Acts 9:5b). Jesus was mysteriously identified with people—the loving group of people Saul had been running down like criminals. Jesus, he saw, was the mysterious fulfillment of all he had been blindly pursuing.

From then on, his only work was to “present everyone perfect in Christ. For this I labor and struggle, in accord with the exercise of his power working within me” (Colossians 1:28b-29). “For our gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and [with] much conviction” (1 Thessalonians 1:5a).

Paul’s life became a tireless proclaiming and living out of the message of the cross: Christians die baptismally to sin and are buried with Christ; they are dead to all that is sinful and unredeemed in the world. They are made into a new creation, already sharing Christ’s victory and someday to rise from the dead like him. Through this risen Christ the Father pours out the Spirit on them, making them completely new.

So Paul’s great message to the world was: You are saved entirely by God, not by anything you can do. Saving faith is the gift of total, free, personal and loving commitment to Christ, a commitment that then bears fruit in more “works” than the Law could ever contemplate.


Paul is undoubtedly hard to understand. His style often reflects the rabbinical style of argument of his day, and often his thought skips on mountaintops while we plod below. But perhaps our problems are accentuated by the fact that so many beautiful jewels have become part of the everyday coin in our Christian language (see quote, below).


“Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, [love] is not pompous, it is not inflated, it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7).

Bless you all this day.

Help me Lord to be more conscious of your presence.

Teach me to recognise your presence in others.
Fill my heart with gratitude for the times Your love
has been shown to me through the care of others.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Turtle and Green Bean and New Potato Salad

Well, no, of course I'm not going to put Turtle in the salad, but I drew a quick sketch of her sitting by Raf. Then I took the photo of her upside-down on the futon. You can see a little of her shaved belly. Salad below photo! Tammy asked me for it some time ago, and when I served it at church, my bp went up, so I waited until now. BTW, everyone loved this salad, and I made 1 1/2 the recipe. It was eaten right up...the Bishop liked it, too.
Green Bean and New Potato Salad

This may be prepared the night before and stored in the refrigerator. Makes 8 servings.

lb. new red potatoes, quartered
1 tsp. salt
2 qt. water
2 Tbsp. salt
2 lb. thin fresh green beans, trimmed
Rosemary Vinaigrette

1. Bring new potatoes, 1 tsp. sale, and water to cover to boil in a Dutch oven; cook 18-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain and let cool.
2. Bring 2 qt. water and 2 Tbsp. salt to boil in a Dutch oven; add beans. Cook 6 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain. Plunge beans into ice water to stop the cooking process; drain.
3. Combine green beans and potatoes in a large bowl. Pour Rosemary Vinaigrette over green bean mixture, tossing to coat. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Rosemary Vinaigrette

Store dressing in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days.

1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup honey
2 garlic cloves
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1/4 medium-size red onion
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1. Process balsamic vinegar and next 7 ingredients in a blender or food processor 15 to 20 seconds, stopping to scrape down sides. With blender or processor running, gradually add oilve oil in a slow, steady stream; process until smooth.

Sue's Silly Statements

Found this on Pamela's Just the Two of Us Page.

Rules: Use the 1st letter of your name to answer each of the following…They must be REAL places, names, things…NOTHING made up! If you can’t think of anything, skip it. Try to use different answers if the person in front of you had the same 1st initial. You CAN’T use your name for the boy/girl name question.


1. Famous Athlete: Sam Sneed
2. 4 letter word: sort, sore, sock, stir
3. Street name: Spring Street
4. Color: scarlet
5. Gifts/presents: sewing machine
6. Vehicles: SUV
7. Tropical Locations: Singapore
8. College Majors: Science
9. Dairy Products: schmaltz
10. Things in a Souvenir Shop: spoons
11. Boy Name: Samuel, Solomon
12. Girl Name: Sandra, Sophie
13. Movie Titles: Sleepless in Seattle
14. Alcohol: Scotch
15. Occupations: secretary, salesman
16. Flowers: snowdrop, sunflower
17. Celebrities: Susan Hayward, Sam Elliott
18. Magazines: Saturday Evening Post
19. U.S. Cities: Santo, Texas
20. Pro Sports Teams: Seattle Sea Hawks
21. Something Found in a kitchen: spatula
22. Reason for Being Late: slept in
23. Something You Throw Away: sacks
24 Things You Shout: Slow down
25. Cartoon Character: Sylvester

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Crazy Quilting and other things

I machine embroidered a lot more of the quilt today. I have about 3 small ones to do. So far I done 3 faeries, 1 wizard, 1 wand, and one bunch of violets. It's looking wonderful so far. Then tonight Raf took me to the Crazy Quilt group (named after the Crazy Water of our town), and Louise brought me home. We have fun just talking...a few worked, but mainly we visited. Margaret had just come back from England, so she told us all about it. She and her husband are from UK.

Blood pressure is going down slowly...due to prayer and petting cats, I'm sure. Went to hospital today to get blood work done, as we are seeing a new doctor...our doctor since 1977 moved to Weatherford to practice...hummmmmmmmm

It's been cold, and we could still have some terrbile weather.

Oh, Carolyn is doing better. Thanks all of you for caring.

That's about all there is to tell.

There are very few people
who realise what God would make of them
if they abandoned themselves into his hands,
and let themselves be formed by his grace.
(St Ignatius)
I ask for the grace to trust myself totally to God's love.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Busy Day

Today was a busy day. Last night Carolyn fell and twisted her ankle very badly. I insisted Joey take her to the emergency room, which he did. And they told her to stay off it today, which she did. However, we had to take her to the bank because her new checking account had not sent her checks or her bank card. She should be getting the card very soon. They said between MLK Day and the snow and ice of the past week, everything was slow. We then went to the Post Office to get her change of address cards.

Then Raf took his piano lesson with Donna Perkins. He is really enjoying his lessons. Donna and her husband, Rual, are planning on attending a music retreat in Maine this summer...luck them!!

Then we took Turtle back to the vet as she had taken her stitches out and needed booster shots. Everything was well with her. Interestingly, my friend Jane Hayes, who lives three block away, also found a torti during the same time we found Turtle. As her torti has had the "operation", too, from the same vet, and I asked if they could be litter mates. The vet, Jacqueline Talley, thinks not.

Then we went to H2JO for a coffee (Raf) and a strawberry Italian cream soda (me).

Today I also embroidered two more faeries from Carolyn's {secret} quilt. I would like to get it quilted next week. I have a wizard to embroider and some other small things before I begin quilting.

The blod pressure is manageable, but I would like it lowers, still.

Here is the latest iteration of the "the flower". I like it best...and I am going to stop doing white for a while. This is colored pencil with various white inks and paints. It's still not good.
Feast of


Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304

Almighty God, your deacon Vincent, upheld by you, was not terrified by threats nor overcome by torments: Strengthen us to endure all adversity with invincible and steadfast faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

This is the Day that the Lord Hath Made

Today the sun was was cold because the Texas wind can be cold! We got to church in time to put up the vestments, put up the correct calendars, and make fliers for Daughters of the King and a Quilting/Craft Ministry. We also had 45 people in church...this is up from the low 30's two months ago. Next Sunday is our annual meeting, and we were planning that, too.

I drew and watercolored the flower again, and I DO NOT like it either. So I will just keep on keeping on...perhaps white flowers were not good subjects.

But, again this was a good day! I think I'm getting a handle on the blood pressure and begin using the treadmill again.

God bless you all...and have a wonderful week.

This was our Gospel reading for today:

Luke 4:14-21

Jesus, filled with the power of the Spirit, returned to Galilee, and a report about him spread through all the surrounding country. He began to teach in their synagogues and was praised by everyone.

When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:

'The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."
And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he began to say to them, "Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Saturday--good day!!

Dear Lord help me to be open to You
for this time as I put aside the cares of this world.
Fill my thoughts with Your peace, Your Love.
from Scared Spaces from the Irish Jesuits

Today was a great day. We drove in to Fort Worth and picked up Fr. Phelps' vestments, went to the Sunflower Store to get vitamins and salt substitute and to the back store.

On the way back we stopped at the Weatherford Downtown Cafe in downtown Weatherford, Texas. These shots are from the inside of the cafe.

Click here to see the wonderful photos.

I tried to draw the above flowers with ink and painted with watercolor. Tomorrow I will do it with pencil and/or watercolor. I think I can do much better.

My blood pressure has been down. The drive to Fort Worth was an experiment, and I guess the meds are working. Tomorrow is Sunday, and I am so glad we got the vestments back...the white and green. Now we need to take the purple and red and the other green vestments.

So, my dear friends, again I thank you for your love, prayers, hugs, and just being there. I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Love to you all.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Goals, Today, Art Challenges

"There is nothing in the world more futile than the attempt to find out how a task should be done when one has not yet decided what the task is." Philosopher Alexander Meiklejohn said that, and now I'm relaying his advice to you. Please ignore it if you're having no trouble at all figuring out what you should do next. But if you are the least bit fuzzy about your future direction, spend some time in the coming days defining the precise nature of your short-term goals.

Lisa has this on her blog: Heart of the Nest.

Now, I think my goals on Jan. 1 were probably unrealistic. Here they are again, and I'm going to check the ones I think I can and have been doing:

1. Draw one thing each day...either a challenge, or from lessons, or on my own...√
2. Create one mixed media collage/ATC each week...or more...√
3. Work on a quilt each week...sometimes, but not weekly...did go to quilting club once
4. Plan what to make for Christmas gifts and begin...and finish...√
5. Participate in at least one swap per month...√
6. Participate more with my Glitter Sisters...√
7. Keep my studio clean and straight...straighten it NOW...√
8. Read at least 60 books in 2007...I've only read 2, am on my third...that's not enough to reach 60
9. Be nicer and kinder...realistic, but I am not near there yet
10. Slow down...well, the blood pressure has made this happen
11. Pray daily and read the Bible daily...I have tried, so far not every day
12. Become more involved in the church...√, even being ill I have been able to do this
13. Blog daily...√
14. Write something daily other than blog...start on that book again?? far I've only written my 3 columns and one haiku...that's not enough
15. Walk every day, at least on the treadmill...I was doing this until the blood pressure acted up, and doctor said to wait until it's back down
16. Keep the house straight...ho much for that!!

So, I'll be working on all that! One way or another.

Today, the blood pressure was down...we took it every three hours, and I didn't have to take rescue meds today.

John came by as he's home from college. He wanted his photo taken with Sadie (age 13+). He was a little boy, age 7, when we got her at the rescue place in Graham, Texas. We had such a good visit, and he stayed until his Papa came home from the store, and we watched Jeapordy together. I am soooooo proud of him...3.8 and is a college junior...gee, I'm sure I haven't mentioned that before! HA!!
This first drawing is of SadCat...the way I felt yesterday when the BP was UP. I was really depressed, and as Terry can tell, I tend to burn all the candles at all the ends and feel really helpless when I have to sit!
Well, so much for SadCat...I hope he is behind me!! I read the second chapter in The Artist's Muse, and I tried the 1st challenge there. The first was an experiment with watercolor and flowers...interesting, especially the one when I drew flowers with water and the dropped paint (the first two).Then I set off on my own to paint the way I enjoy, this time with pencil and watercolor pencils on moleskine (the other one was moleskine, too) watercolor paper.
Well, it's almosst 11:30 pm, and I hear the sleet falling outside. Think we are in for another bout of freezing rain and, strange for Texas!

And as Gail reminded me: Isaiah ch. 26 v. 3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusteth in thee.


See you guys tomorrow...have a good night and a wonderful weekend.

Friday Feast #127

BP was back up yesterday, so I'm back sitting today...Lord, help me to be thankful and not resentful!

Which television shows do you just refuse to miss?

As the World Turns and Survivor

Who did you last speak to on the telephone?

Barney McCasland when he called to say he and Margaret were stopping by.

How many pillows do you keep on the bed?

5, but we only sleep on one each...I have to have one at my side since the hip surgery.

Main Course
Name one addition to your computer (software, hardware, etc.) that you'd love to have.

There's a book publishing, binder, but I don't know the name.

What is your favorite foreign food?

Italian, Central American, Asian...anything with seafood

A little more of the Appetizer...
What did you do last night when your computer was slow and you could not visit all the blogs you wanted to??

Read a little...I'm reading Alexander McCall Smith's 44 Scotland Street and watching Men in Trees and Global Travel

Thursday, January 18, 2007

"Chasing Our Tales" around North Central Texas

Here's my January 2007 column:

As many of you know, I grew up in Stephenville, Erath County, Texas, and recently I became the county coordinator for the Erath County TXGenWeb page, As such I receive email queries regarding ancestors who passed through that county.

Most recently I received the following email from Janet Riley,

"Hello. I am looking for the birth parents of Arthur Owens, born in Erath County in 1922. His father was G.L. (Gilly) Owens. I also need to know if there are marriage records for Gilbert Owens from 1920 to 1924 to Maggie Lula Hurley or Jones and also marriage Maggie Lula Hurley or Jones Or Ownes to a Mr. Rhodes."

Well, I began looking for Arthur, Gilly, and Maggie, and the first thing I found was Gilbert L. Owens as an 18-year-old son of Frank and Sarah Owens in Limestone County, Texas, on the 1900 Federal Census.

I kept on checking census information on until I came across Lula Rhodes with son Arthur Owens in Red River County, Texas, on the 1930 census with two Rhodes sons, Maron H. age 15 and Emual R. age 12. There was no husband listed, so it's hard to tell whether these older boys were sons of hers or Mr. Rhodes or when she married Mr. Rhodes, as Lula is listed as head of house.

Lula had been born Alabama, as had her father. Her mother had been born in Georgia.

In the 1920 Census in Red River County, I discovered a Maggie Rhodes, age 53, married to Richard Rhodes. She was born in Texas, but her father was born in Missouri and her mother was born in Tennessee. She had a son, Robert, 33, and grandchildren Albert age 7 and Lula age 1 3/12 living with them. This cannot be the same Maggie Lula, but is it quite a coincidence that they were in Red River County only ten years before the other Lula Rhodes.

I then found a Lula Rhodes in Thurber, Erath County, but she was too old to be the Lula we were looking for. At this point, though, I am wondering. Isn't Lula Rhodes a fairly uncommon name? And, yet, I'm finding them all over the place!

In death records, I found a Lula Victoria Rhodes who died in Red River County on 7 September 1918 certainly couldn't have been our Lula, as she was on a 1930 census nor could it have been either of the others I'd found. But they were in the same county. Were they related?

Then I found a Lula Mae Rhodes who was born in Erath County on 2 February 1907.

Lula Hurley did not show as an obvious choice, but interestingly I found a Lula Hurley who was a matron...what was a matron, you ask. Well, in this case she was one of the ones in charge of the Texas Baptist Orphanage in Ellis County, Texas, in 1920. Also, the girls under her care were called "inmates" at the time. I thought I'd found a prison, at first!

OK, I needed to move on, so I looked for Lula Jones born about 1890 in Alabama, who might have married a Rhodes or an Owens, but, lo, there were hundreds in this category. So, since her name was Maggie Lula, I started all over with that.

There were no Maggie Lula Jonses, so I proceeded to Hurley. And again, so luck. So I tried Maggie Lula Owens, and again I got nowhere!

Oh, but wait, Arthur Owens' father was born in Alabama, as well. And his name was Gilbert, right? So this brought me right back to the 1900 census. Here's what it tells us about who Gilbert was living with and what their names were:

Frank A Owens 40
Sarah J Owens 37
Gilbert L Owens 18
Mary E Owens 14
Richard C Owens 11
Pearl E Owens 9
Ozie L Owens 7
Oletha Owens 4
Daisy I Owens 2

And lo and behold, this Gilbert, who Janet tells us is the right Gilbert, was born in Texas, as was his father, while his mother, Sarah, was born in Mississippi. So, is the Arthur who was living with Lula Rhodes in Red River County the son of this Gilbert L. Owens? Well, it's possible, as perhaps neither Arthur nor Lula knew where Arthur's father and mother were born.

And for right now, that seems to be a dead end! In corresponding with Janet, I discovered something that I have come upon many times. The older generations do not want to share the information with the younger generations, and so it goes to their graves, and the younger generations are left with a puzzle.

I would like to encourage you, one and all, to tell your children and grandchildren about their ancestors. Write it down, tape record it, video tape it, but tell them! If there was a black sheep in the fold, that's ok, it happened, and it's over now.

And, if you have information on any of this, please email me and Janet and let us know. Let's solve this mystery!

OK, you Garlands, listen up. Here is a query about your wonderfully interesting family!

"Greetings from Ireland. I would very much appreciate it if you could help me to get in touch with a local historian or local historical society in Garland. I have been engaged for many years researching the history of the surname Garland and have built a fairly detailed picture of the history of the name in Ireland going back to 1170 when the French form Gemon (Gerngn or Guerngn) was used and comes from a Norman family which arrived in England in 1066.

"I noticed some time ago that you have a city or town near Dallas named Garland, and I would very much like to find out more about its origins. I would also be happy to corresponded with anyone with the surname garland. a considerable number of Irish people with this surname emigrated to the USA especially last century.

"I am a teacher of Sociology and Religion and am a member of the County Londonderry Archeological and Historical Society and a founder member of the North of Ireland family History society.

"With every good wish, Yours Sincerely,

"Roy Garland
22 Hambleden Park
SDunmurry, Belfast
N. Ireland, BT 17 9 NA"

And here is some further Garland information from Noel Garland:

"Have just started reading this Gary Hanks, a distant cousin descending from a Bennett who lives in Gainesville, Texas. It is a genealogy book and am most interested in his biography of Abraham Lincoln. It appears that Gary's Hanks may be related to Nancy Hanks Lincoln, Abe's mother. Just barely got thru the first paragraph, there is a rather large section on Lincoln, so I don't know what all is in there. Am going to copy out all or most of Gary's lineage pages, for future reference. Probably like me, you know nothing about Nancy Hanks Lincoln, who didn't live long after Abe's birth, where he was raised by his fathers second wife.

"Sure was strange finding another possible distant relation to my step-grandmother across the street from this Bennett kin practically. Will have to follow up to see how he is related. Am sending him more on the Easley family of the 1800's, plus some more about Julia which I found I may not have given him in my haste to get ready to leave Waco. This 100 year autobiography of Julia contains so many references to what she and the rest of the family did there in Mineral Wells, I can't count. I did go to the Palo Pinto Court House last year and copied out all the courthouse and land deed records on my immediate family, but there are many more there about the Garland Bend, and Jesse Garland families from Palo Pinto County and Mineral Wells. Jesse was my father's brother whom I never met, but did meet Don Garland, the Barber once, and either Jesse's son or grandson, Charles Garland, a couple of times briefly, who still lives there. Art Weaver sent me the obituary on Don Garland last year"

Here is a query for information in Archer County:

"I would like to request a lookup for a death that happened in Megargle in 1928. JOSPEH FRANKLIN TUCKER, supposed have to died at his daughters house, her name was Mary "May" King, her husbands name was Claude King and they lived there at the time of his death, and I am needing information on a marriage license that was got in Archer County back in 11-1926, for a Clarence Ray Tucker and V.D. Simpson, just wanted to be sure this is where they got the license. It would be greatly appreciated. This is my Grandparents.
Donna Foley"

Well, guys, guess that's the end of this segment of Chasing Our Tales. If you have information or questions you would like published, please email me at (this is a NEW email address) or send me a letter at P. O. Box 61, Mineral Wells TX 76068-0061.

And until next time, stay warm and dry, and write down that genealogical information.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Snow in Texas, Blood Pressure, Art--Good Day

After 5 days of ice with temperatures not over 30˚F, today we woke up to over 2" of snow. Beautiful. Our schools and all the schools around were closed. Tarleton was closed, and John drove up to pick up his business law text which had come in the mail...and to play in the snow with Aris! He said it was terribly slick , and it was the first time he had driven on icy highways with his Camaro. I'll be glad when I hear he's back safely in Stephenville.You can see our deck, shed, and workshops, and all the bird feeders. Raf got out yesterday and filled all the feeders, and our dripper dripped most of the time. We had about 8 cardinals, juncos, goldfinches, white winged doves, Eurasian collared doves, kinglets, wrens, and tons of sparrows. I didn't see the hawk today...he would have had a snack if he had showed up.

Also, Raf got up early and took Turtle to the vet...she was fixed today, and she didn't even know she was broken! We'll pick her up tomorrow.

My blood pressure stayed in the 140's most of the day, and I felt so much better. No head pain and bulging eyes. Oh, my, the Lotrel and Toprol are working, I think. Thank God and all of you for your prayers!

I drew this mandala today as the first challenge in the Stroud book I spoke of yesterday, The Artist's Muse. I think it going to be a great book, but it's a little dated, in the sense it is speaking of 9-11 and was written right after that. I titled this "I am the Light of the World". See the empty cross representing Christ Risen, the lightening for light, triangles for the Trinity, circles to represent world without end, and red drops of blood representing Christ's passion and death. Pen and ink, Twinkling H2O's, gel pens.

This maze was done January 15. Pen and ink and colored pencils.
This Monster Cat was drawn yesterday...I think I was feeling like this cat looks...pen and ink on lined papers (what I had by me at the time).
So, there is my day, my friends. God bless you all and keep you safe until the morrow.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Today the blood pressure is down some has been running between 160 and 140. Right now Raf just took it, and it's 152/85. I'll wait and take my regular Toprol at 8:30, and tomorrow I'll take my second Lotrel. I have taken 3 Clonidine today.

Here is some information our new doctor, who has been an emergency room doctor for several years, told us. When you take your blood pressure, either at home or in a store, do it three times. Throw out the first one and average the second two. The first one is nearly always wrong.

So, today I tried to chill...I am not good at that! Also, I am not patient, at all. I'm driving Raf up the wall, and he is being so good to me. I did go with him down toward Stephenville to meet John half way to take him one of his last two textbooks. The other should be here tomorrow, so we will either meet him again, or, if I am feeling better than today, we will go all the way down...42 miles...and take him out to eat. Even as a college junior, I think he doesn't eat as well as he might. He still has a 3.8 grade point...we are sooooo proud of him. He is an office of his high power rifle team...they shoot against the military and are the only such collegiate team in the country.

I am still drawing, just not scanning. I'll scan them all at once.

In a few minutes we are going to watch The Devil Wears Prada on pay per view. Many something funny will help.

Oh, Teri Casper of Tucson recommended The Artist's Muse by Betsy Dillard Stroud. It came today and looks wonderful. I'll tell you more later!!

I want to thank all of you for your prayers, love, hugs, good thoughts. You, my friends, are so good to me. Thank you...and ((((HUGS)))) and XOXOXO to you all.

Monday, January 15, 2007


Well, the old blood pressure when up, up, up again, and I went to the doctor. He said we must get it down, so I took the rescue drug, and I am to begin my old meds tomorrow morning. I do feel some better, and I'm just chillin' and watching an old version of Charmed. I have drawn, but I haven't scanned...will do it later. See ya then!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Cat Noses

And here are the cat noses!!

Good Evening...Wonderful Service

Considering we had icy roads, H2Jo had about 30 people in attendance last night for Raf's performance. This building is way over 100 years old, and Amy and Ninfa provide a really nice venue for their patrons.

Raf sang original compositions, folk, country, and standards.

Between sets, our grandson, Joey, played some of his original music.Today we were honored with the presence of The Right Reverend Jack Iker, Bishop of the Fort Wort Diocese. This man is a great leader of faithful Christians of the Anglican faith. With Bishop Iker is our rector, Father John Phelps.
We are having a tiny bit of snow, ice pellets, sleet, and a change of thunder! Roads aren't really slick here, but all around us it's a mess.

God bless you all on the holy Sunday.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Cat Ears

In my effort to learn to draw cats, I have decided to draw bits of cats, to see if it will help...we shall see, I suppose.

Mrs. Goodneedle's Challenge Quiz

You Are An ENFP

The Inspirer

You love being around people, and you are deeply committed to your friends.
You are also unconventional, irreverant, and unimpressed by authority and rules.
Incredibly perceptive, you can usually sense if someone has hidden motives.
You use lots of colorful language and expressions. You're quite the storyteller!

You would make an excellent entrepreneur, politician, or journalist.
What's Your Personality Type?

Thanks to Mrs. Goodneedle for putting me on to this personality test. Interestingly, I have been and am a part-time journalist.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Two Meme Challenges

Susie challenged me…here it is:

1. As a child, what did you always say you wanted to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a cowboy or at least a wildlife ranger…but back in the day women/girls were not allowed in any of the wildlife schools. All my aptitude tests came back saying I should work with wildlife!

2. If you had to choose one thing that you've always dreamed of doing, what would it be? What is stopping you?

I know God wanted me to be a Christian Educator, and for a time I was. I even worked on a master’s degree in Christian Education. Then, against my will, he called me to be a teacher. I never really liked it, but I was very good at it, and I did it for over 20 years.

3. Who is your biggest fan? Who is always encouraging you to be all that you can be?

As a child, my daddy, John Ficke, was. As an adult my husband, Raf, is.

4. What bible study or book (besides the obvious-the Bible) has most impacted your life to date?

I took Old Testament for Dr. Benitez at Texas Wesleyan College my freshman year.

Book most impacted my life, after the Bible, as C. S. Lewis’ books.

5. When are you the happiest?

I happiest in Mass on Sunday morning and when everyone is on an even keel in my family and when Raf and I are traveling.

Here’s a meme from Tammy…Kentucky Gal

What comes to mind when you see the color orange?

Fire and a sunrise or sunset.

Did you ever get in trouble while you were in school? If so, what was it for?

Talking in first grade…and my parents (an ex-teacher and school board member) knew before I got home. And in 8th grade the coach’s daughter had not done her homework and talked me into sharing mine…for her dad’s class. And he caught us…I was humiliated!

Which topping(s) make up your perfect pizza?

Right now pepperoni, mushroom, and onion…or everything they have!

Main Course
Do you believe in UFOs/aliens/etc? Why or why not?

No, I don’t. I think stuff like that is complete un-Biblical and un-Christian.

What color is your bedspread/comforter/quilt?

Brown, with orange and cream and light blue.

Today's art

This study in cats' eyes was interesting. I have lots to learn. Raf likes the top the most...I like the bottom best.This is an ATC called Star Brand. I'm sending it to someone.

It's going down

Well, today the blood pressure is about 150/ it's coming down. I have taken only one Clonidine today.

I drew these cats last night, and I will draw something more today, as I am feeling better. I think the first cat looks more like a fox...I drew it without looking at either a cat or a picture of a cat. The second has funny eyes. Eyes are hard!

I am trying to visit blogs...and I REALLY appreciate everyone's encouragement. Your thought and prayers are so appreciated.

I am hoping to go listen to Raf sing tomorrow night and go to church Sunday as the Bishop, Jack Iker, the bravest bishop in the Episcopal Church, will be celebrating Mass. I did make a new potato and green bean salad that is setting up in the fridge awaiting Sunday morning.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

And Another

This has been a week! Yesterday I told you my blood pressure was up. Today it was up over 212. Went immediately to my doctor who saw me immediately and gave me Clonidine...a rescue med. I took two, and an hour later I took another. It's down, but not where it should be. I am taking two other regular meds. We can't figure what happened, but he will monitor me, and if I have to be taking Clonidine by Monday, we will just readjust regular meds.

I did draw a cat today, but I'm not going to scan it until tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

One More Day

Today was the day we planned my first shopping trip to Fort Worth since October. Yesterday I went to the doctor...and he upped my blood pressure meds. Today during the trip the blood pressure shot up to 184/91. Talked to the doctor, and he upped the old meds. He says it will take about 5 days to stabilize. So I am just going to chill for a day or so. Raf still have to move some more of Carolyn's stuff. Carolyn, btw, is the happiest I have seen her in years. Her friend, with whom they are living, is a God-send!

Anyway, here's my cat of the day, a study, especially of the lone eye.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Off to Quilting

Well, I'm almost off to quilting with Louise. I drew this little Sleepy Time Kat just a few minutes ago. It's my favorite, so far. I am going to be able to draw cats by the end of this year...and more botanical things, too.

Great getting out with Louise and attending quilting!!

Monday, January 08, 2007

Second Monday post

Well, I tried more turned out ok...the others, well, you can see!

This was last week's mixed media piece. It is a 4"X4" piece.

Not a good day

I haven't drawn today, but I will. This has been a foul day today...daughter/grandchildren problems. Some of you know about it, but I just am not going to go on about it here.

Love and ((((HUGS)))) to you all.

Sunday, January 07, 2007


Today was a beautiful day the 50's. We went to church, and there was a wonderful congregation...I believe our congregation is growing.

I am endeavoring to draw every day, so I drew this goofy cat just to keep up with drawing daily. I am really trying to draw cats...they're hard, and I messed up the eyes, but I DREW!!
Yesterday I drew this Faces of Woman.
Last night we had the annual Altar Guild party. This is the group who attended: Connie, Meredith, Doris, Elizabeth, Allie, Mary, Shari, and I. I took the photo, and Gayle, Frana, and Barbara were not there. Father and Kate came after I took the photo.
I'm now sitting in my recliner with my laptop and Turtle in my lap, watching Sleepers...a very sad movie.


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