Well summer continues to be busy, fun and full of family.  We went to Kansas City to enjoy the 4th of July.  We got to see quite a few of Randy’s family and his friends from high school.  James came up the day before the 4th and we took him and his friend, Randi, out to dinner.  James went with us to Kansas City and we had a wonderful time!

Here are the very few pictures I took over the 4th as the lake is not conducive to carrying a camera!

And the "girls" from high school

And the “girls” from high school

Randy's high school friends

Randy’s high school “guy” friends

Back to the trip to Table Rock lake, we went to Dogwood Canyon to ride bikes.  It is such a gorgeous place and I always enjoy visiting there.  Okay, take a look:

Dogwood Canyon

Dogwood Canyon

Gorgeous

Gorgeous

Dogwood Canyon waterfall

Dogwood Canyon waterfall

Creek at Dogwood Canyon

Creek at Dogwood Canyon

And since we saw all the above on bikes, here are the dynamic trio:

Emily

Emily

Randy

Randy

Patrick

Patrick

And the trio’s selfie:

The Bikers' selfie

The Bikers

We wrapped up the day with s’mores and a bonfire.  It just doesn’t get any better!

Fire

Fire

S'mores!

S’mores!

Pretty sure there are going to be more adventures this summer.  Stay tuned.  Let me know what you have been up to.

 

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We went to Table Rock Lake last week for a well earned vacation.  Okay, I jest about the hard earned part but we had fun.  Emily and Patrick were able to go with us but alas, James had a test and could not make it. One of the highlights of the trip was the long anticipated opening of the “Top of the Rock”.  Top of the Rock consists of several restaurants, a few bars, a wine cellar and a chapel.  This fabulous place also has a gorgeous golf course, driving range and putting greens.  It was all so gorgeous I wished I was a golfer.  About 10 years ago, the original Top of the Rock burned.  Johnny Morris of Bass Pro fame bought the property and spent 8.5 years redoing the whole place.  After all those years of seeing signs saying “coming soon” it finally arrived and it is beyond amazing. The two things that still were not finished were the cave and the Natural History exhibit, but those are scheduled to open this week.   If you are ever south of Branson, you must stop for a look.  Below are some of the photos we took the first night we went for dinner and drinks.  We were there 4.5 hours on the longest day of the year.  The sunset was brilliant.

Emily!

Emily!

 

Emily and the lake

Emily and the lake

Gorgeous art, everywhere I looked:

Reflecting pool

Reflecting pool

 

Gorgeous art

Gorgeous art

Reflecting pool

Reflecting pool

another great piece of art

another great piece of art

More great art

More great art

Beautiful

Beautiful

Fabulous

Fabulous

Oh, we ate at both restaurants on different nights.  Most of the art above was in the side of the building that houses the “Osage Restaurant” and the wine cellar.  We also got drinks on the patio.

family time?

family time?

The boys

The boys

Three of us

Three of us

The Patio crowd

The Patio crowd

Check out that chapel!

The Chapel

The Chapel

Close up

Close up

Patrick and I danced.

Patrick doing son duties

Patrick doing son duties

Well, that rounds up the first part of our vacation.  What have you been up to?  Where should we go next? I will try to post the rest of the pictures later this week.   4 Comments

Today I am going to cover planes, trains and the rest of my very mundane life!  First though, I want to say Happy Father’s Day to Randy.  None of the kids were able to get home, but they all phoned their dad.  Luckily, we get to see all of them in the next few weeks.

Randy's first year as a DAD.

Randy’s first year as a DAD.

Now that we are retired, sometimes we need to get away from each other.  That happened this week.  Randy got in my car and headed south while I took his car and headed north.  Luckily he was only going to a friend’s house and I went for a massage.  On his way home, Randy stopped at the Arkansas Air & Military Museum at Drake Field.  I think he enjoyed it and he did snap some pictures.  So without further ado:

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Moving on we will fast forward to yesterday.  Randy went to beer school at the Fayetteville Library.  He ran into friends and they all had a great time.  I stayed home and did laundry, mainly because I do not like beer!  Here are the shots he took.

Beer School 1

Beer School 1

Beer School 2

Beer School 2

Today after brunch, we headed to Springdale to see the Amtrak exhibit.  My favorite things were the “fake” people having lunch and the posters.  Here, take a look:

Lunch on the train

Lunch on the train (food must be bad, look at her face)

Amtrak Train Posters

Amtrak Train Posters

And here are the pics of the train:

Train 1

Train 1

Train 2

Train 2

I have more train pics, but figure that would be overkill.  Since I saved you from death by Amtrak, I will try to bore you with pictures from our yard!  “Yee Haw”, said no one ever.

Our weather has been as weird this spring as it was this past winter!  We actually lost some plants, trees and bushes from the cold, but what did make it has been gorgeous.  I guess the wet and cool spring has been a good thing.

The Lillies!

The Lilies!

These lilies have been in a pot for about 10 years and have made three house moves.  They are gorgeous.

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Our very small garden seems to be happy also.  We live three blocks from the Farmers’ Market but sometimes you just want some herbs and peppers in your own yard.

"Our Garden"

“Our Garden”

Randy finished his latest ceramics class and I am impressed at what he has learned.  Check out these pots!

Randy's ceramic pots

Randy’s ceramic pots

Well, that almost covers it all.  Hope everyone had a great weekend.  Let me know what you are up too!

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Okay, May was pretty awesome.  The U of A spring semester finished, class of 2014 graduated and the U-haul parade has slowed down.  This is a sweet time in Fayetteville.  Just like everywhere else, the farmers’ market is back, street festivals abound and life takes on a more laid back approach.  The difference here, for us, is we live smack dab in the middle of it all!  Randy has been busy with “Scotch” liquor class and “Craft Beer” class.  Let’s just say it has been tipsy around here!  We also had a lovely, though way too short, visit from Charlotte.  We enjoyed showing her the slower side of life.

To kick off summer, there were two signature events that happened.  The first one is The Block Party on, you guessed it, Block Avenue.  The day turned off beautiful and we enjoyed all the people, food and bands.  This party stretches for several blocks heading south from Dickson to the square.  Here are the pictures:

Looking south on Block Avenue

Looking south on Block Avenue

Looking north on Block Avenue

Looking north on Block Avenue

It was certainly a mecca for people watching!

My Fayetteville sister and I made a quick trip to Rogers for some shopping and then headed north to see our Bella Vista sister for a night.  Her family showed us a wonderful time that included dinner, drinking, boating and a fire in the fire pit.  We also got some hot tub time, which was so relaxing.  The next morning we headed down to Bentonville for lunch before heading back to Fayetteville.  The Bentonville square was busy and gorgeous.

Benton County Courthouse

Benton County Courthouse

Long and winding path thru the Bentonville Square

Long and winding path thru the Bentonville Square

The second signature event was the annual Artosphere Trail Mix Concert Tour, which features live music spread out on the Frisco Trail.  Guys, the weather was beyond perfect and the music was wonderful.  Randy and I hit most of the 10 musical groups.  Candy Lee and the Sweets, one of my favorites, played and I really enjoyed listening to the Martha Redbone Trio.  Check out their links and also this link to all the other great bands.

The Street Drum Corps performed on the new Maser’s art installation, called Under the Stars.  You can read all about it at this link.  Here is a picture:

Street Drum Corps on Maser's Under the Stars.

Street Drum Corps performing on Maser’s Under the Stars.

Here are some more pictures of the event:

Map of performers

Map of performers

Martha Redbone Trio

Martha Redbone Trio

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Candy Lee and The Sweets

Candy Lee and The Sweets

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And to round it all off, we have a new neighbor!  Emily, she wants me to tell you hello.

Our new neighbor has different eye colors.

Our new neighbor has different eye colors.

Well, I want to know what you have been up to!  Please elaborate below.

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My mother, Patsy, did not like having her picture taken.  I went back in the archives to find this beauty!  You might recognize her as “Mabel” in my header picture!

Happy Mother’s Day mom, we miss you.

Mom

Mom

And Happy Mother’s day to all the wonderful moms out there.

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Well, moving to Arkansas has taught me some things that I previously didn’t know.  Did you know that trees leaf out from the top down?  Me either!  Front porch sitting is good for that kind of info.  I didn’t know that moving 2 hours due east would send me to the deep south.  My new name is Ma’am and my whole pattern of speech has changed.  Take this example:

Ma’am, I am so sorry but we ran out of the kale and onion quiche earlier today.  Oh bless your heart, it is my fault for not getting here earlier! Oh no ma’am, it is our fault that we didn’t anticipate you coming in today.  Oh sugar,  you couldn’t have known that so please do not apologize.

Yep, that almost really happened!

Moving on, I have noticed that we have gray squirrels here.  In northeast Oklahoma we had brown squirrels.  What is up with that?  Do the brown squirrels get to the state line and say “whoa, we are headed into gray squirrel country, we best turn back”?  How do the gray squirrels know to live here and not 2 hours west?

Another thing I didn’t know was there is a fabulous dessert here called Possum Pie!  It is chopped pecans for the crust topped with chocolate pudding and whipped cream.  Oh sugar, it is to die for!

Well moving on again, it is officially spring and the farmers’ market is open for business.  This early in the year about all you can find there is kale, chard (whatever that is) and spinach.  That is the bad news.  The good news is all the groups playing great music on every corner and in between.  I managed to get a few pictures to share with you:

Band 1

Band 1

Band 2

Band 2

Band 3

Band 3

Band 4

Band 4

Amazing once you realize that this is 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning.

And the square was packed with people and dogs milling around.

General crowd photo

General crowd photo

So now you know so much more about our lives! Oh sugar, don’t you feel so special? I can’t wait to find out what other things I didn’t know about life in the south!

Thanks for hanging out with me.

 

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Well, if you have been reading this blog since we retired, you know that life consists of concerts and more concerts!  We live about a block from the Walton Arts Center, Randy can get student tickets and we go every chance we can.  The latest show was actually a fund raiser for the local hospital foundation.  I went as a +1 date with my sister.  We ate, we drank and we listened to Backroad Anthem and Joe Nichols play some great music.  It was a lovely evening!

Another day, another concert!

Another day, another concert!

Backroad Anthem

Backroad Anthem

Joe Nichols

Joe Nichols

Luckily, tequila did NOT make our clothes fall off!

James and Randy finished up their beginning pottery class.  I was so impressed with their work.  The glazes were outstanding and I loved them all!

Gorgeous!

Gorgeous!

More fabulous bowls

More fabulous bowls

Bowls from above

Bowls from above

Randy is taking another 6 week class and I can’t wait to see his next work!

James and I almost finished our boots and shoes.  We did manage to break my sewing machine and the sander was pre-broken from the manufacturer!  As soon as the new sander comes, I will be able to finish the edges and wear them!

My new boots are almost done.

My new boots are almost done.

My almost finished green shoes!

My almost finished green shoes!

We went to Springfest over the weekend and watched the bed races on Dickson Street.  The weather was gorgeous and the crowd was happy.

Springfest

Springfest

Springfest bed races!

Springfest bed races!

There was a Pup Crawl during the day and I was amazed at all the dogs that showed up in puppy strollers!  It was pretty funny.

To round things out, we went to my sister’s house, on the lake, for Easter dinner.  The food was great, the company was awesome and we all “had” to participate in the Easter egg hunt in the back yard.  Mind you, the youngest in attendance is a sophomore in college!  It was pretty hilarious.

"The Kids"

“The Kids”

Well, that is how we are handling life around here.  Spring has sprung, the grass is green and the dogwoods are blooming!  Life doesn’t get much better than that!  Hope all is well in your world!

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Spring break week was cold, rainy and incredibly windy but we made the most of it.  Randy, James and I made a quick weekend trip to Big Cedar Lodge.  While we were there, I made a trip to Springfield Leather.  For me, this is kind of like how other women feel when they are shopping for shoes or handbags!  I was like a kid in the proverbial candy store!  I won’t go into how much the candy cost.  We also got a wonderful dinner at the Worman House, which is one of our favorite places to dine.  The view is to die for.  Sorry, no pictures for that trip.

After coming home to do laundry and repack, I headed out with my sisters for a quick trip to Oklahoma.  Our first stop was the restaurant 28 Springs, in Siloam Springs.  Wow, what a delightful place to enjoy a great meal.  Since we are only  a short drive from there, I know we will be back to eat there again.  On the road again for about 5 minutes, we stopped for the night at the casino.  Liz had a free room, so what is not to like?  We managed to gamble until about 3 in the morning and Liz won enough to make it worth our while.  Mj and I did not win but slept well!

The real purpose of this trip was to visit Pawhuska.  It is famous for many reasons but the two most important ones are it is our hometown and home to the Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond.  We got there in time to eat lunch at Bad Brad’s and it was as delicious as always.  The rains came as we were eating but that did not stop us from sightseeing.  We headed west to Bluestem Lake for a look around.  We were not disappointed.  Everything looked wonderful, even in the rain.  Here are some pictures:

Cattle in the rain

Horses in the rain

The lake from afar

The lake from afar

Not sure about this photo

Not sure about this photo

The ever present pump jack

The ever present pump jack

Donkey in the rain

Donkey in the rain

Abandoned Bird Creek School

Abandoned Bird Creek School

We took the back road over Bird Creek in order for Liz to tell the “green eyes” legendary tale once more.  All told, our first foray down memory lane was great.  We ended the day with an overnight visit with Mj’s friend Cathy.  She is just about the most accomadating host that I know.  We talked, we ate, we talked some more and then grabbed some sleep.  Her home is so welcoming and her art collection is beyond compare.  I do think the visit with her was the highlight of the trip, even though we stayed awake until 2 am.  While we were there, the wind was blowing like crazy and the weather was a bit weird.  I did manage to grab one picture from her back porch of the Osage hills.

Looking east

Looking east

We went for a drive through the cemetary.  I had not been since we buried my dad 2.5 years ago.  Everything looked lovely and we spent a fair amount of time there browsing around.  We also checked out my parents’ headstones.  Yes, my parents died 25 years to the day apart.  Well, here are some pictures of the cemetery as we wandered around.  My sister Liz said we were doing our version of “OUR TOWN” the play!

My parents' graves

My parents’ graves

Just beautiful!

Just beautiful!

Gorgeous Angel

Gorgeous Angel

Another pretty angel

Another pretty angel

Very sweet

Very sweet

After the cemetery, we grabbed lunch and went to the Osage Tribal Museum.  They currently have a great display of photographs that document the original allottees.  The faces, the names and the manner of dress made for a fascinating tour.  We wrapped up the day by doing a bit of shopping at Clifton’s.  MJ and Liz managed to each buy something and I came away with more memories.  All in all, a fabulous trip down memory lane.  Osage County just seems to live in my heart.  My mom always felt that way about Waco, Texas.  I remember how she loved the Brazos river, the chalk bluffs and the bluebonnets.  Now I understand.

Our son, Patrick, also paid a visit to Fayetteville for a week.  It was great to spend some time with him.  Thanks Patrick!

Well, let me know what you did for spring break.  Back to car pooling the college crowd!

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We went to two concerts, had some great company and went to the St. Patrick’s day parade.  The first concert was Willie Nelson.  That was a good concert but there were some drunk people there so that detracted from the pleasure!  Originally, that concert was scheduled for November, but Willie’s band was in a car wreck, so March was the new date.

We then went to the Rosanne Cash concert and let me tell you, it was fabulous.  By far one of my favorite concerts in recent years.  Her new album is called The River and The Thread.  If you get a chance, take a listen to it.  That is my kind of music!  Rosanne’s cousin, Jackie, and her husband were in town visiting my sister and brother in law, which was great for many reasons.  We enjoyed their visit, complete with good food and great conversations.   Of course, since they went with us to the concert, we got to meet Rosanne!  Oh my, she is such a nice person and so friendly.  We grabbed a photo op:

MJ and I with Rosanne Cash

MJ and I with Rosanne Cash

Rosanne and her band were headed to Louisiana for two shows and bless my heart, I wanted to go!  She puts on such a great concert, so check it out next time she is in your neck of the woods.

Randy’s sister came to spend a few days with us.  There is not anyone we would rather have visit.  Good conversation, good food and lots of laughing are the hallmark of a Charlotte visit!  Yes, that pun was intended.  We also got to spend some time with our friends Jodie and Nancy.  Let me just tell you, it was a wonderful week all around.

We live one half block from Dickson Street.  All the parades in town go right down that street.  Of course, being good citizens, we like to watch the parades.  So, this weekend we went to the St. Patrick’s parade.  The weather was gorgeous, the crowd was thin and the parade was short.  Here are some pictures:

St. Patrick's Parade 1

St. Patrick’s Parade 1

Parade 2

Parade 2

Parade 3

Parade 3

 

Parade 4

Parade 4

  • The best of the parade

    The best of the parade

    The band that was playing on the “float” were really good.  Wish I knew who they were.

So, in a nutshell, that is what we have been doing.  Today we got 3 inches of rain and then it snowed!  Luckily, the weather is supposed to improve tomorrow.  Remind me in August that I whined about this winter.  Everyone have a great week and I will talk soon.

If you have anything interesting (or dull) to say, please do!

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Today we had sleet, ice, snow, rain and dark of night!  Schools are closed, restaurants are closed and everyone is so done with winter.  I had plans to go to Rogers for lunch and a play with my sisters.  As it turned out, we could not get there.  I can’t decide if I was sorrier to miss the play or the mexican food!

On the bright side, yesterday’s weather was fabulously warm with a bit of cloud cover.  Fayetteville celebrated Mardi Gras with a parade around the square and down Dickson Street.  It was colorful.  Here are the pictures, courtesy of James:

Required Fire Truck

Required Fire Truck

This one might show up for the Saint Pat's parade also.

This one might show up for the Saint Pat’s parade also.

Important people

Important people

Loved these guys!

Loved these guys!

Classic cars 1

Classic cars 1

Classic car 2

Classic car 2

Classic car 3

Classic car 3

Classic car 4th and final

Classic car 4th and final

Great ones

Great ones

Lovely

Lovely

Purple Dragon

Purple Dragon

Hopefully, the weather will be looking up later in the week!  We are going to see Willie Nelson and Roseanne Cash.  Looking forward to both concerts.

Hope it is warm and sunny in your world.

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