Thursday, August 30, 2018


We love when the kids in the neighborhood go back to (brick and mortar) school since we get this place all to ourselves!


Saturday, August 25, 2018

End of Summer Daybook Post

Outside my window ~

Gosh! That Texas heat can be brutal.  Today we went to Lowe's.

Our backyard is looking a little worn out so we hope to freshen it up a bit longer.

I am thankful for ~

* the sacrifice and discipline of my husband.  Last month, we paid off our mortgage.  Praise be to God!  I'm so thankful for his discipline and God's blessings.

* Our camper!!!  Without it, we would never have been able to afford all the adventures we took this summer.   (girls' weekend, swimming holes and Texas Hill Country, and Jamaica Beach and Galveston coast line)

From the school room ~

Back at the end of July and for the third year in a row, our home school group gathered together for a pool party.

There was a  home school field trip to a local pottery/painting venue.

The group of kids REALLY enjoyed this experience :)

And just this past week, we attended a field trip to the children's garden at the Dallas Arboretum.  (So amazing!)

From the kitchen ~

Last Saturday was Miss Mabel's feast day, (St. Helen of the Cross - her Confirmation saint), and we didn't think about it until the day after.    We were a little late celebrating, but we did none-the-less :) Miss Mabel made some chocolate crosses from candy molds we have.

What I am reading ~

Exercising the brain is so important.  I've been doing a lot reading this year after giving myself a 25 book challenge for the year.  I just completed these 3.

This one hit home since my dad was a pharmacist!  Did you know that a pharmacist was not considered an officer in the Army during WWII?  They were only enlisted men.  Many times, their profession was looked down upon as being an interference to doctors or snake oil sellers.  Can you imagine?!  It took the Pharmacy Corp enactment before Pharmacists received the respect and status they earned.

I found this book on a bookshelf  in our house.  After dusting it off (excuse the pun),  reread it.  Based on the dust bowl, Stan the man has to read this novel for his Texas state history class this fall.  It is AMAZING!  Your middle school student and up would love this.  Be aware, there are a few parts that may be scary for little ones, but there is no candy-coating the harsh realities of the dust bowl.

"Without Mama, life in the log house at the forest's edge can be lonely for a young girl. But there's Papa for company, and the two mules, Bartholomew and Thaddeus Frisco, and the big old dog that mysteriously showed up at the end of winter. The girl longs for her mother, but other than that, everything about her little homestead seems right and in its place--that is, until a powerful storm settles over the valley and threatens to take it all away. As the flood waters rise and separate the girl from her papa, will there be anything that can save her?" "The Angel Knew Papa And The Dog" is a lyrically-told tale of a little girl's faith, personal courage, and amazing survival in the wilderness.

Around our house ~

The Feast of the Assumption with a tea party :)  It was just the three girls and I, Miss Clementine decorated the table with things she found around the house,  and we only had blue Powerade for tea, but that's alright.

We Catholics are so blessed to have the tools at our fingertips to bring our faith alive and pass it down to our children.  As technology advances, there's more and better ways to share the faith with one another.

I pulled out these old Glory Stories for Miss Clementine.  (My big kids use to listen to these all the time.)  On the way to the Dallas Arboretum, Clementine listened to the story of St. Rose of Lima.  St. Rose of Lima's feast day was that same day, August 23.

Even though it is near triple digits, some fall decor went up.

Y'all!  This is early for me down here in Texas, but looking at the calendar, this was going to be the only chance we had until the end of September.

I am praying for ~

* my mom!  In your charity, please keep her in your prayers.  She's having some issues from her lung surgery and will be seeing a specialist at the Mayo Clinic next Thursday and Friday.  She has a very rare condition and we pray God delivers answers next week.

Coming down the pike ~

We still have a bit of quiet around here.  No sports yet, but that'll soon change.

Labor Day weekend we have a house project that needs to be checked off the list.

A last photo to share ~

We had some friends over to swim this week and decided to call it home school PE :)

As my daughter Miss Ester read somewhere, "August is like the Sunday in Summer."  Enjoy what's left of it and have a wonderful weekend!


Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Jamaica Beach, TX Vacation (Part 2)

Tuesday  was all about the pier : pier fishing and Pleasure Pier (and one little kiddo who woke up with bad allergies / cold).

David and another dad took four of the kids fishing from one of the piers in Galveston.

Later in the day, a mom and I took the two oldest teens to Pleasure Pier.  At the end of the pier there was a row of wooden rocking chairs where she and I sat and rocked while sipping on some libations, looking out over the ocean.

(Instagram photo credit, Miss Mabel)

Good night, Tuesday.  You did not disappoint.

(Sunset on one side of our camper)

Buenos dias, Wednesday! 
Your glorious sunrise was a clue for us about how amazing the day would be!  :)

(Sunrise on the other side of our camper.)

Some of the younger ones headed to the on-site pond for some catch and release fishing before having a group pancake breakfast.  

Our family and another decided to head to Surf Side Beach (about a 25 minute drive south of our resort) for a day of swimming, sun, fishing, and picnicking.   Oh my gosh!  We had a BLAST!  

This girl!  She definitely has a saltwater soul :)

Some of my husband's favorite moments were catching (2) Black Tip Sharks and (1) Spanish Mackerel. 

Then we cleaned up and headed out for a dinner.   I LOVE these people!

The restaurant was delicious, it had views of the ocean across the street, and we had a mariachi band serenade us.

A little bit of souvenir shopping afterward topped the night off.

What a wonderful day we had!

Thursday!  I'm so glad we extended our stay to enjoy another day by the coast.

Miss Mabel and I went into town to take a tour of the historic Bishop's Palace.

Built in 1892, for the Walter and Josephine Gresham family (9 children), this incredibly gorgeous, Victorian mansion survived every major hurricane since 1900.

From the website::
The house is listed in the National Register of Historic Places at the national level of significance in the area of architecture. Architectural historians list the Bishop’s Palace (Gresham House) as one of the most significant of Victorian residences in the country.

As Mabel and I stood in awe inside the foyer, we were imagining how magnificent it would have been to attend one of the many balls!

How I love history!!

The house was built from 1887 to 1892 for Colonel Walter Gresham and his wife Josephine, with whom he had nine children. An attorney and entrepreneur, Gresham came to Galveston from Virginia following his service in the Civil War. He was a founder of the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railroad, eventually working to bring about the merger of the Santa Fe with the Atchison and Topeka Railroad. He also served in the Texas Legislature.

 (Everything is original - except the phone which was added later.)

In 1923, the Diocese of Galveston purchased the house where it then served as the residence for Bishop Christopher Byrne.  After the diocesan office was moved to Houston, the diocese opened the house to the public in 1963 for donation.  The funds operated the Newman Center (from the basement) for Catholic students attending college nearby.

We stopped for some delicious custard on our way back to the resort.  Yum-my!

Friday was time to say good-bye to our cherished vacation.  

We really hated to leave and since then, we have dreamed of being back on the island.  The good news is the other families are part of our church family so we get to see them each week at Mass.

David and the guys are heading back over Christmas vacation for a fishing trip, and we all agreed to go back to that resort next summer for another joint vacation with friends.  We can hardly wait.  

I'm so grateful for this time especially since we agreed it was our best vacation ever.

Until next then...


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Jamaica Beach, TX Vacation 2018 (Part 1)

This trip! It was amazing.  One of our best ever.

My husband is so over trips by day 4 or 5.  But on this trip, when I suggested extending our stay, he was all over it.  And when it was time to leave, none of us wanted to leave.

We were in company of great friends (2 other families met us down there), enjoyed great views, ate fresh fish out of the ocean, experienced great fishing, and had loads fun!

The resort :

Jamaica Beach RV Resort survived Hurricane Harvey last September and is quite a booming resort with plenty of amenities for everyone.

It is located right across the street from the beach and ocean.

It has two swimming pools and a splash pad.

There's the lazy river.

A cute miniature golf course is on the premises (the only thing we had to pay extra for).

The outdoor movie screen was a big hit!  (They played only family-friendly movies.)

And that luscious greenery though!

We explored the entire resort, playing on or in anything we could.  And there were some naps (since traveling can wear a girl out)! 

The fishing :

Monday, our first real day there, had us taking early morning walks in our jammies and then heading to the beach to watch the guys fish.

Surf fishing is not easy.  At all. These boys made it look easy.

It was fun to sit back and watch them reel in one after another!

They ended catching 50 fish (whiting)!!

A rinse in the pool was a must followed by a late breakfast and then onto some fun in the lazy river.  Afterward, we prepared for a group, fish fry dinner :)

I just love these families and I just loved this moment :)

After dinner, a couple of the families decided to drive down the coastline to another beach where we caught more fish and the prettiest sunset.

Y'all!  This was just a little more then 24 hours into our trip.  It truly set the tone for what the rest of the week would bring.  On the drive back to the RV resort, we kept repeating how this was the best day ever!  



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