Category Archives: Mondays are for Memories

Mondays are for Memories – Trinity, TX 2014

Since we just finished our first day of work here at Trinity Pines (and I have “comfort gray” paint on my fingers to prove it), I looked back to the first time we worked here in 2014. Here is a post about the town itself – really pretty typical I think for a country Texas Town. But it does have a pretty interesting town sculpture!

March 28, 2014 – Trinity

We’ve been in Trinity, Texas, for the last three weeks as we’ve served here at Trinity Pines Conference Center.
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Trinity is, I believe, a pretty typical small Texas town.
It has a Home Town Hero,
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and while the main drag is probably a bit quieter than they would like
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the town does have the essentials.
A place to buy your groceries
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and if you look the other way, there’s required DQ (aka Texas Stop Sign), pizza joint, and fast food options.
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There are churches (both in town and outside of town)
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and even spots to enjoy a bit of local fare!
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While it is a quiet little town, it is also has other essentials – like a new medical center and a sweet little quilt shop!(Ok, so that might not be on everyone’s “essential list”, but it sure perked me up!)
I have to confess,though, that this guy is what first caught our eye as we headed into our March project –
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The big spikey guy on the corner!
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Yikes!
But as is so often the case, there’s more to that story, too! When we noticed the whimsical birdhouse tucked behind Spikey Guy
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we decided further investigation was in order! One day as we drove by (after a great lunch at the Trinity Cafe) we noticed a guy getting out of a truck parked at the building that seemed to go with the corner lot. Gary pulled over and hopped out to get the story. (If my kids are reading this they’re saying, “Wait – DAD hopped out to talk to a stranger?” Honest, it’s true!). And we are so glad he did!
We got to meet Jim Robertson, the artist in residence at “Overdrive Studio“.
And what fun to get a quick tour of his working studio-
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This baby is actually road-worthy and has been used in many local (and not so local) parades!
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But the fact that he takes stuff from piles like these –
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and designs and makes stuff like this
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is amazing!
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Of course it’s not all railroad spikes and futuristic vehicles –
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some of it is quite whimsical!
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Just goes to show you, it never hurts to stop and ask! We also were able to get the rest of the story on Spikey Guy. That sculpture is actually based on this 19th century Siberian bear hunting armor –
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Doesn’t that look comfy for a long day on the hunt!
I must confess, however, that even though we now know the whole story behind that piece of art, he’s still kinda creepy when you drive by at night!
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Gotta love Small Town, USA!

Monday’s are for Memories – February 20, 2008

Looking back nine years from today – we were in the Florida Panhandle, working at Teen Challenge Boys Ranch in Bonifay. This was our second winter there, and it seems like we were pretty anxious for some spring weather.

Spring is coming, right? Feb 20, 2008
Ok, even though we’re here in Florida if you’ve been reading along this winter, you know we’ve had some pretty darn cold weather. So I am happy to report that there are definate signs of spring appearing. I noticed leaf buds on some of the shrubs this morning, and just outside the rig I saw these lovely spring flowers….
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And if it’s starting here, I’m sure it will be coming to a neighborhood near you soon! 🙂

Tammy 2And now a Happy Birthday shout out to our daughter-in-law Tammy She’s been part of our family for the last 7 (or so) years, and we have been blessed to call her our daughter. She loves the Lord, she loves our son, and she’s a wonderful mother to our three granddaughters. We love you, Tammy – Happy, Happy Birthday!

Real time update – It’s Tammy’s birthday again (of course!), but some of her ‘stat’s have changed. She’s been part of our family for the last 15+ years and we continue to be blessed to call her daughter! She still loves the Lord, she love our son, and she’s a wonderful mother to FIVE of our beautiful grandchildren! We love you to the moon and back, Tammy – Happy, Happy Birthday Again!
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Mondays are for Memories – February 2007

Ten years ago we were working at Teen Challenge Boys Ranch in Bonifay, FL (in the panhandle). Here’s a little memory from our Florida winter!

February 15, 2007 – Happy Trails to you…..

So, just what have we been up to the last couple of weeks?

Life here in Bonifay has developed into a peaceful routine. We’ve made some good friends, both among the volunteers and also among the staff. The fellow in charge of maintenance is Joe Hardy, and he’s a real cowboy at heart. He invited Gary and I to join he and his wife Diane for a trail ride this last weekend. Sure – sounds like fun! Saturday dawned bright and clear – just a little chilly. But not to worry, we loaded up the horses and headed to Pine Log State Forest to join several others in their riding club. Gary & I were definitely the beginners in the bunch! I should have worried when no one seemed to know just how long the ride was going to be. The ride was lots of fun – only it was about 2 hours too long! I was riding Dakota, who would walk along slowly (bounce, bounce, bounce) and then break into a trot to catch up with his buddies (bbbooouuunnce, bbbbbouuunnce, bbbbbouuucnnnce…). Over and over again. This horse needed a cruise control! The fellowship was great – but yikes, did I hurt by the time we finished the ride. Sunday it hurt to sit, and then after that it just hurt to walk.
Here’s a shot of Gary on the trail (just before we trotted up to join him!)…..
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And here we are at the end of the ride. Phew, we made it!
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One of the fun little parts of this adventure is our quest for interesting quilt shops (OK, so it’s not the most interesting part to everyone on this adventure, but then again there are all those trips to Home Depot!). We’ve been to great big stores, like Keepsake Quilting in NH, and Mary Jo’s in Gastonia, NC and we’ve been to little shops like the “Fabric by the Pound” (no web link here!) shop we stumbled upon in Maine. Trust me, I have the “fat quarters” to prove each and every stop! I’ve even found a little fabric store in the town just down the road in Graceville, FL. It’s called Crafty Cats Quilt Shop and Tanning Salon. Honest.

But here’s a little shop (Quilts N More) that we drive by each time we head to Dothan, AL –
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I’m just a little concerned about the “more”…………

Mondays are for Memories – Canyon Lake and the Hill Country of TX

A good friend left a comment on my post about our New Neighborhood asking whether or not Austin was pretty. Well, truth be told, I haven’t actually formed any “pretty” opinions about Austin since what I mostly see in Austin is TRAFFIC. Perhaps we’ll get a bit more into town later in the month and can form a more accurate opinion (especially since I’ve heard that it really IS a lovely city!), but in the meanwhile I did want to report that the Austin Area is in one of the prettiest parts of Texas. Austin is located in the Hill Country, filled with lakes and winding roads and, yes, hills! Several years ago we stopped for a couple of days at Canyon Lake in the Hill Country, and I thought I’d share that post today. As you can see – it IS a beautiful part of Texas!

October 5, 2013 – Canyon Lake

Oooo-la-la!

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What a beautiful couple of days we had at Canyon Lake. It’s just outside (north) of San Antonio and in the beautiful Hill Country area of Texas. Our good friends Jo and Roy had raved in the past about the beautiful Corp. of Engr. parks on the lake, so we thought it would be a great stopping over place before we completed our final leg of our journey to the Rio Grande Valley. And the fact that Jo and Roy were actually going to be there = well, we couldn’t not stop!
Unfortunately, due to the partial shutdown of our dear Federal government, the COE campgrounds were closed, but J&R found nearby private campground (still on the lake) and soon we were settled in nicely!
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And look, nice quiet neighbors!
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Our buddies had some in-town errands to run on Thursday, so we were left to our own devices. It seemed like a good morning to check out Canyon Lake.
The morning walk at Canyon Lake. All good!.
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It’s always a treasure to find tiny pockets of color appearing in the pot marked surface along the water’s edge.

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Given the heat (it was in the 90’s) and the fact that we were on our own, I confess that we spent the rest of the day in the cool (relatively) of the RV. (I had a couple of deadlines to meet, so it was really a good thing!) But Friday was a play day for sure!
With Jo and Roy as our guides we set out to Gruene, TX (pronounced Green). It’s a quaint Texas town located along the Guadalupe River, just outside of New Braunfels.
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Along with interesting architecture and touristy shops and places to eat, it is also home to Gruene Hall – one of the oldest (if not THE oldest, depending on who you ask 🙂 )dance halls in Texas.
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Apparently, on this very stage, George Strait got his start!
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Oh, the historical significance of it all! But Country & Western legacy beside, it really was a fun little town!

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It’s all about tourism these days in Gruene, but they do it pretty well and Jo and I even found a bargain or two! After a lovely late lunch in Gruene (check out the Gristmill River Restaurant for great riverside dining if you ever get to town), we took a little drive to nearby New Braunfels but found we were too late to get into some of the historic buildings there. Besides, we had one more important stop to make –
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As you can see, Mrs. Bush also sells Texas sized cookies!
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But that Key Lime Pie – My.Oh.My.
Mrs. Bush's Key Lime pie. Oh yeah, baby!
We showed great restraint in not eating the whole thing!
So it was a wonderful couple of days. We shared meals when we could, got in a couple of games, and just hung around and caught up with each other. We love that we have such dear SOWER friends that we can go for years between visits, and still pick up right where we left off.
But – like many good things, it came to a prayerful end on Saturday morning. We hugged and prayed and promised to keep in touch (thank-you, Facebook, for making that easier than it used to be!).
And then we hit the road!
Final leg of our fall journey. The long road to the Rio Grande Valley!
300 miles later, we were parked and getting settled in the Flame of Truth Campground in Alamo, Texas.
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And here we will be for the next little while. Gary’s been asked to head up the A/C installation at the new school building for Macedonia Christian School. There is one small glitch, though. The actual building isn’t up yet. Soooo….we’ll see what the weeks ahead will bring. Right now we’re thankful for our safe arrival and are looking forward for tomorrow’s cold front. Right now, it’s 93 and the A/C is a humming away, trying to catch up from the hot drive. And I think it might just be time for a nap…….
…………….and I might just be dreaming about that pie……………..

Mondays are for Memories – More LBJ

Since we had such an interesting visit at the LBJ Ranch on Friday, I thought I’d go back and find the post about another piece of the LBJ puzzle. So here is post from almost five years ago, when we once again (or would that be once before) checked out a bit of Presidential history –

About those places and things…. 02/02/2012

We’re parked tonight at the Walmart in Port Lavaca, TX.  Tomorrow we’ll head into our February project at Texas Baptist Encampment in Palacios, TX (right along the coast between Houston and Corpus Christi). Before we get started on February Goodness, I figured I’d better finish up the “Places and Things” part of my post a couple of days ago.
So, the places…..
JoRoyButler We didn’t do a great deal of sightseeing while we were in Giddings, but we did make one trip into Austin to meet up with our good buddies, Jo and Roy.
And of course, not wanting to waste a 60 mile drive on just sightseeing, we met up at Costco. 🙂 We both did a little shopping and we got our tires rotated and THEN we decided to check out the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library and Museum.
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Now, I confess that I’ve never particularly enamored with LBJ. But I did find this museum full of memories of my teenage years, so all in all it was pretty interesting. And, it was Free. I love Free.
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There were many interesting displays and places to explore
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but we couldn’t actually check out the Library –
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since it isn’t open on Saturday. It sure did look impressive (though I think I’d have had trouble finding any “light reading”)!
Here’s a view of Austin –
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and a view of the guys waiting for Jo and I…..
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🙂 We finished up the day with a late (great) lunch at Eastside Cafe (as much as I get frustrated with my “smart phone” I LOVE that I can find these fun places to eat when we’re out and about!).
So that was Austin. To say we scratched the surface is an understatement – but at least we can say we were there.
Now let’s see….what else did we do…?
Well, we met up with 3 SOWER couples in San Marcos for lunch one day.
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Can’t say we saw a lot of San Marcos, but it was fun to get together with friends at another fun spot (thank-you Yelp!)
And that, with the exception of a wonderful final (for this year anyway) trip to Waco to see Lara and friends and collect hugs(where Gary did not do ANY major projects and we enjoyed a lovely evening sitting around that firepit!) was about the extent of our “places” this month. All good. All very good.
Which brings me to the “things” –
And it’s really only one thing.
Every time we drove into Giddings we saw this sign-
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Really?

OK – enough rambling for tonight. Tomorrow we’ll be getting settled by the bay :), but even tonight, here in the Walmart parking lot, we were blessed with a beautiful reminder of our creative God.
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Sweet Dreams!