Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Rescheduled Again

We drove downtown to Baylor Clinic (70 miles round trip plus tolls on the Hardy Toll Road) to be told there was a water main break and the procedure had been cancelled. They called our house at 8:45 am but we have to leave before that to arrive by 10. So now we are going back on Friday, arriving at 1:00 pm. That will put us in rush hour traffic on the way home. I guess it never occurred to the girl at the Endoscopy Center to call Dr. Ertan's office to ask if they had a cell phone number. Like Ted said, they don't pay those people to think.

I did talk to Raynor in Dr. Ertan's office about the follow-up endoscopies. He said this one on Friday will be a follow-up with the 90 degree ablator to hit anything the 360 degree one may have missed. In July there will be a normal endoscopy with mapping protocol. After that, they will only be necessary once a year to start instead of every 3 months like we thought. Raynor said they have had only one patient who needed to return more frequently. That relieved some of the aggravation of the wasted trip for me. We both had been dreading quarterly trips downtown not to mention the anxiety that comes with waiting for results that frequently.

So until Friday "That's All Folks."

Pictures from Brenham

I've plagiarized these pictures from LeAnne's blog. I just wanted to share a couple bluebonnet and longhorn pictures with you folks!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Change in Next Endoscopy Appointment

I forgot to mention that Ted's next endoscopy that will be done at Baylor Clinic downtown has been moved from 4/29 to 4/30. Terry has his own doctor appt. that day so he won't be able to go with us. We expect a routine endoscopy with visual inspection, biopsies and a "touch up" with the ablator if any BE is seen. I'm just hoping he doesn't cough, wake up, pull out the hose or aspirate any liquids! Knowing he has to have this done every 3 months is making me a little apprehensive because he always seems to have a problem with something. If it was done on Tuesday we were hoping to have results by Friday. With it moved to Wednesday, I'm sure it will be May 5 before we hear. It will be a heavy prayer weekend for us both.

We went to our second anniversary dinner at Taverna in Conroe compliments of Terry and Carol. We had champagne in Waterford flutes at their lovely home before heading out. They always make everything so special. The restaurant is very nice and has some interesting items ... like kangaroo loin! We did share an appetizer of venison sausage, venison loin and buffalo sausage. It was pretty good but I had to not think about what I was eating. I chose steak (beef) for my entree. They invited us back to watch a movie but I was very tired because of not sleeping too well. I went right to sleep when I got home and slept until 8 the next morning. Finally, I felt refreshed.

Ted shot on Saturday and we went to 5 o'clock Mass. I had ribs in the oven and we came home for dinner. We rented the George Clooney movie Michael Clayton. I'm not much on movies anymore and this one wasn't even too thrilling for being a thriller. But what do we want for a buck and a half?

Sunday was just a lazy day and I did laundry. We have been on the go so much that just hanging out at home for a weekend felt great.

This morning our cleaning lady called to say her stepson died on Friday and she wouldn't be here today to clean. I told her how sorry I was for her loss. However, that meant that I had to clean the house. So we both got started. Ted is the designated vacuumer. The two guest rooms, guest bath, dining room and sitting room seldom get used so they are easy to clean. I just kept at it until it was done. I have another load or two of laundry and dinner to think about.

We are voting tomorrow. In Texas you "vote early, vote often." I have never lived anywhere that you can vote early and I've never had to vote so much. We must have a half dozen elections a year. Most of the time I don't have a clue about anything on the ballot. This time is election of 5 representatives to the Woodlands Township, our new designation on our way to becoming a city. There are also two bond issues, one for the community college and one for the school district. The actual election day is May 10 ... a Saturday! Whatever!

Say a prayer on Wednesday that all goes well for Ted and that we get good results from the biopsies.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Busy Week and A Visit to Brenham/Chappell Hill

Eileen and I played bunco on Monday. She was a sub but didn't win! However, another sub did. I told you they always win!!! I came home empty handed. Michele had a wonderful spread for us to enjoy. Then we took a tour of her garden - beautiful flowers, fruit trees, vegetable garden. I told her my three hanging baskets were jealous!

We had a gift card to Aqua Wash that Terry & Carol had given us after using our car at Christmas and we just got around to using it. It was for a complete inside and out detail so it took several hours. That kept Eileen and me close to home since I really don't like driving our big truck unless it's absolutely necessary.

I fixed tortillas for dinner and we watched Dancing with the Stars and The Bachelor. Eileen doesn't follow these but we watched Big Brother for her so turnabout is fair play. We all had fun explaining what was going on and our thoughts on the different people.

Tuesday we were up and out early so Eileen could make her 10:30 a.m. flight. She called when she landed and had made it home to Orlando in under two hours. Her husband was picking her up and they were traveling on to West Palm Beach.

Wednesday we took off from here heading for Hempstead and the Legendary Oaks Country Club. We met our friends LeAnne and Jim there. The guys went golfing and I drove us to the new Houston Premium Outlet Mall. I knew it was on 290 but didn't know exactly where. I think I've figured out a back way from The Woodlands to get there. It was about 20 miles from Hempstead.

We shopped at Liz Claiborne, Coldwater Creek and Hanes for me. I know LeAnne bought things at Coldwater Creek. We had a light lunch at the food court because we were going out for dinner. I got two chicken strips that were terribly expensive but they were good. One would have been enough.

The guys came home, cleaned up and we went to Volare's Italian Restaurant. We tried to eat there last time but they were closed on the day we came. It was a great restaurant and Jim and LeAnne arranged for an "anniversary dessert" for us and then announced dinner was on them. We didn't expect that but it was so nice to have such good friends to share the day with and to be treated so kindly.

The next day the guys went golfing again and LeAnne took me all around Chappell Hill and Brenham. We stopped in the downtown shopping district. It is such a delightful small town and everyone talks to you. We ended up visiting with each shop owner. Tres Chic even offered us anything we wanted to drink from their coffee bar but we just took ice water. Renee also explained what went into a latte so if I ever order one, I know what I need to tell them.

We went back to the house about 2 p.m. and arrived 5 minutes before the guys. We left for home around 3 p.m. and stopped at Miss Kitty's in Magnolia for one of the best hamburgers and fries you can find. There really is a Miss Kitty and she was there in her cowgirl hat. Both she and the young waitress came over to make sure everything was to our liking. They got our condiments exactly right!

Tonight Terry & Carol are taking us to a new restaurant out on 105 in Conroe. It sits in front of the Creekwood Gun Club and used to be part of the club. It has been leased out and apparently is an upscale eatery now. They have been there and really wanted to take us. We are going to their house before 6 p.m. to pick them up. We'll probably have to fight the I-45 traffic but hopefully it won't be too bad.

Monday, April 21, 2008

It's Crawfish Season

Saturday's show at the Magolia Opry was exceptionally good. They had lots of performers and everything from Tracy Chapman to the Beatles was thrown in with the country and gospel music. The pot roast was excellent and is always our entree choice when we eat in the cafe. Andra, Mike and Eileen thought it was terrific. She and I had taken an hour long walk around the walking trail that afternoon so we were all ready for bed soon after we got home. Ted had gone shooting and brought back his First Place trophy from his league at the Gun Emporium.

Since we had gone to Mass at St. Matthias in Magnolia on Saturday night, I cooked a leisurely breakfast on Sunday morning before heading to the Crawfish Festival in Old Towne Spring. Eileen had never seen 2 lbs. of crawfish piled high on a plate. Ted says they look like red roaches on steroids. We had fun just watching people tear into their pile. I had a couple Louisiana gals teach me how to eat them when I first moved here but I just don't think they're worth all the work it takes to enjoy them! They say 80,000 lbs. of crawfish are consumed during the festival.

There were three entertainment stages and we spent time at the Zydeco music stage and the country/western one. It was a delightful day to be outside. We strolled through the town but spent most of our time listening to the music. I had put baking potatoes in the oven to start automatically while we were gone. Ted started the grill when we got home and fixed filets. I threw together a salad and it was a quick dinner. We watched the Hallmark Hall of Fame show about the deaf child. Since no decision was made for him, we were all disappointed at the end of the movie.

Today is my Third Monday Bunco Group and Eileen is going to play as a sub. We'll have to do any last minute thing she wants this afternoon because her plane is at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow. The time has passed very quickly.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Eileen Is Here

Tuesday I took my eggs and brownies to church for yet another funeral. The parking lot was so full I had a hard time finding a place to park. This was the third young (40ish) lady to die in the past month. It is so sad. The ladies were setting the food tables in the hallway so they could put up the maxium round tables for eating in the gathering room. I had a doctor's appt. and couldn't stay to help. Rose said it all went well and there was plenty of help.

Wednesday was Happy Hour at the country club. I arrived about 5 and when I was ready to leave, Terry & Carol were having dinner so I stopped to chat with them. Carol had arrived home from Chicago the day before. Then I drove to Rayford to meet Jay and Stella for dinner. It was almost 10 before I arrived home.

Thursday was another funeral and more eggs! I hope I don't have to make anymore. We can go long periods without a funeral at our church and then all of a sudden you have several right in a row. I dropped the eggs off on my way to the Newcomers April luncheon. They had a vintage clothes fashion show and it was done so well by the Junior Forum. The food was excellent and they had quite a crowd, almost 100.

I was just changing my clothes when Eileen arrived. We met her friend Andra who didn't stay but a few minutes. We visited and watched Survivor together. Thursday night is a good TV night. I also took time to make my meatballs for Friday night.

On Friday I had some running to do - drug store, get gas, bank, drop off clothes at the Purple Heart truck, etc. Then we drove to Market Street and walked around for a bit. We went to Maggie's to buy some votive candles sold only there. They smell so wonderful. I keep them in my drawers and it permeates the wood. I take them out to burn one at a time and the drawers still smell good. We decided to eat at The Cheesecake Factory because we wanted to sit outside. Afterwards we took a ride on the Waterway Trolley. They have done such a wonderful job with the Town Center of The Woodlands and it's fun to show it off.

We went to Newcomers' Wind Down (cocktail party) which was being held at Terry & Carol's this month. There were almost 50 people there. My meatballs were all gone; they usually are. There was shrimp, ham, brisket and all sorts of party foods and of course many kinds of wines. Eileen has met some of my friends and knows Terry & Carol so she had a good time visiting too.

Tonight we are going to St. Matthias Church in Magnolia for Mass and then to the Texas Opry Jamboree for dinner and the show. Eileen's friend Andra and her husband Mike are joining us. We took Eileen there the first time she visited and she wants to go back.

We're playing Sunday by ear and Eileen is subbing in my bunco group on Monday. More later.

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Masters Weekend

We stayed close to the TV to watch a lot of The Masters Golf Tournament this weekend. On Friday, Ted golfed with Terry & Greg and had lunch at the East Course. Terry also invited us for dinner but we declined. Sometimes it's just nice to stay home. I took the opportunity to visit my friend Elmira in the hospital. She is making good progress.

Ted went shooting Saturday morning. When he came home we went to the Art Festival along The Woodlands Waterway. We ran into so many people that we know that just the visiting was enjoyable. But the weather was gorgeous and the vendors had such beautiful wares that it was a perfect afternoon.

We met Terry & Greg at church for 5 p.m. Mass and then they came here for dinner. I had set the table but Ted took it all outside to the table on the deck because it was such a delightful evening. By 9:30 Terry was falling asleep. I think he had played golf everyday since Wednesday and still had two more to go.

On Sunday Ted shot in the Jalapeno Open and I think he said he came in second place in his class. He was in a league at the Gun Emporium and came in first in that. Shooting this much keeps him in his hobby room reloading shotgun shells lots of afternoons and evenings. Keeps him out of trouble.

I watched The Masters and finished up a three-book series I had been reading. It was late afternoon before Ted got home. He left for Denver today and won't be back until Thursday.

There is a funeral at church tomorrow so I have spent the morning making deviled eggs and brownies to take over. I have a doctor appt. so I won't be able to help with the serving. This is called the St. Martha Ministry at our church. I help whenever they ask me and I'm able. So many times we're not in town.

Thursday is the Newcomers Annual Fashion Show and Luncheon. My friend Eileen is arriving here that day. She has another friend that lives in the area and was picked up today at the airport to visit with her. Then she'll come here on Thursday. I invited them both to be my guest at the luncheon but they are going to San Antonio for a few days. Eileen will stay with us until next Tuesday. We have some plans made but you'll have to come back next week to see what they are.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Nothing Much Going On

It's been a quiet week. Monday I used the ham bone from Easter to make a pot of bean soup and it was very good.

I had taken one of the two vanity lights down in our bathroom in preparation for hanging up new ones. There were two small screw holes to be spackled and the area painted which I did on the first one. But the receptacle was put in wrong and I couldn't see a way to hang the new fixture without doing something to the receptacle. I can connect wires properly and mount something with screws but I wasn't willing to tackle that. So we had to call an electrician. He said whoever put the lights up originally should be shot. Typical builder garbage he called it. He had to remove both receptacles and mount them properly. Then the lights went up easily. However, the second light had a huge hole in the drywall that was hidden behind the fixture. That had to be spackled. He showed me how to stuff it with newspaper first, then spackle without too much pressure. That's done and I'm going to paint today. These new lights hang down in front of the mirror and reflect so it's a lot brighter in the master bath now and they look a lot better. That was our last "update" project but we didn't get it done in time for Wine Tasting!

Bev F. called and asked me to sub for her at bunco Tuesday night and I agreed. It's been awhile since I've seen some of those ladies and it gave me a chance to catch up. Our friend Elmira is back in the hospital with an intestinal obstruction. I plan to visit her today if she wants/can have visitors. She is battling cancer and is having a rough time. Last time she needed a rod put in her thigh bone because it was so brittle they thought it would break. Cancer and chemo aren't enough to deal with. She keeps getting these other ailments too. She is near the top of my prayer list each day. Her outlook is always positive and she has managed to just keep doing her routine things. She is amazing.

Two ladies spent four hours cleaning our windows, screens and sills on Tuesday. They were so thorough and I'd have them back in a minute. So now the house, windows and yard are all in good order. But as we all know, that never lasts long.

Wednesday was Terry's birthday. Carol had flown to Chicago to watch the grandkids so two other couples and we took him out to dinner. We went to Mel's Cafe in Tomball. This is a place you would never stop to eat if you didn't know about it. Barbara Walters interviewed Sharon Watson (Enron whistleblower) here. It's just such a fitting Texas place for that. Wednesday is chicken and dumplings night and that's Terry's favorite. I had grilled catfish and they gave me two whole fishes. I barely managed to eat one. The food is good and plentiful.

Then we went back to one of the other couples' house for cake and coffee. It was a nice evening and Terry wasn't alone for his birthday. We gave him a Border's Gift Card and some silly Over The Hill gag gifts. He turned 65.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

I Survived!!

When we came home from Fredericksburg on Wednesday my head was swimming with all the stuff I had to get done by Saturday when we were hosting Wine Tasting. That afternoon we brought home all the stuff that needed to come out of the RV - refrigerator food, perishable food, dirty clothes, clean clothes (they just go along for the ride!).

I was up at 6 a.m. on Thursday and worked for 3 hours in my office. I had piled mail up while the kids were here and the postman had delivered last week's mail Wednesday afternoon. Taking care of running a household, keeping up with family and events and managing finances can take up a lot of time. I got dressed and was at the dentist at 11 a.m. From there I went next door for a hair cut at 12:15. Next stop was the bank but first I slipped into Sonic for a banana/strawberry fruit smoothie as my lunch. After the bank it was the post office to mail the book I bought Sam and Morgan.

Last stop was the nail salon. I needed both a manicure and a pedicure. It was going on 6 when I finally made it home. I'm not used to running full tilt for 12 hours and was pretty tired.

Friday was a lot easier day because the cleaning ladies were coming. Nice way to plan for a party, huh? Once they were finished we had to extend tables, fish out proper sized tablecloths, move chairs, set up card tables, get down the large coffee pot and just figure out the logistics of having 30 people in for wine tasting that includes a buffet dinner. Ted also spent time cleaning the deck and outdoor furniture.

We met Terry & Carol at the new NY Pizzeria for dinner. This place has a 28" pizza that will cover the top of a card table! We saw a couple being carried out the door. The Sullivans and Lanthorns were there having dinner too and stopped by to say hello. The Woodlands lady who was killed falling from a zipline in Honduras while on vacation was a neighbor to Gerre. She was telling me that the family lived behind her and the lady was in her bunco group. I always thought that would be fun but I don't think OSHA is real big in the islands so I think I'll pass.

Saturday dawned overcast and cool. Where was the 77 and sunny they promised me? I needed to use the deck for my crowd but it didn't look too promising. As if on cue, at noon the sun came out and it turned into a beautiful day. Thank you, God.

I had asked the lawn guys to trim the bushes as well as cut the grass and they had the whole yard spiffed up hours before the company was to arrive. I bought begonias and petunias in hanging baskets as well as a Boston fern for my wheelbarrow so we were looking good inside and out.

The Wine Guy and the leader of Wine Tasting arrived before six to set up. Then everyone else started arriving. I was worried about having enough room but everything went just great. The wines were excellent, the food delicious and we were thanked time and again for being such great hosts.

It takes a lot of time and trouble to entertain a crowd but I enjoy having people over and that in turn generates invitations for us to socialize at other events. The old adage "for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction" holds true even in entertaining.

I have a light week this week. The window washers are coming on Tuesday. I wash them occasionally but right now they need the screens taken out, the sills scrubbed as well as the windows being done inside and out. Sounds like a job for someone else! We are taking Terry to Mel's Diner for his 65th birthday. It's chicken and dumplings night and he likes them. I think there will be 7 of us. Carol will be in Chicago with Rhonda while her husband Greg comes to Texas for a long weekend of golf. The next week my friend Eileen flies in from Florida and the fun will begin again.