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We’ve moved! September 10, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in blog, Blogging, blogs, Domains, Feelings, Internet, random, thoughts, Websites.
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movedYou know how about a month ago that I was saying Manders and I were gonna have our own .com? Well, because of a few things, we couldn’t. But thanks to Manders winning a Visa gift card, we finally were able to! What happened was that we had our hosting site, just not our own domains. What can I say, we’ve never done this before.

Now, I have one current giveaway here and will have another one here as well. I had originally signed up for that specific giveaway with THIS blog (the other one didn’t exist yet) and since most of my readers know where to go for reviews/giveaways, I thought that it would seem a lot easier for them to enter than to have to switch blogs. Speaking of which, if you have signed up via e-mail through THIS specific blog, you will have to subscribe to the other one and unsubscribe from this one. After these 2 giveaways, I will no longer be posting on this one. You don’t need to subscribe to the other one right now as I don’t have everything where it should be.

If you’re interested in seeing the new Texas Banter, head over to TexasBanter.com!

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Dancing September 5, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Dancing, Feelings, learning, life, random, thoughts.
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2 comments

Earlier as I was watching “Meet Me In St. Louis” and it was at the part of the Winter Ball and everyone dancing. It got me to thinking that I don’t know how to dance! All I pretty much know how to do is head bang (that’s a metal head for ya) and sway. That’s all. Pretty sad, once ya think about it. At 24, I should at least know how to slow dance but I’ve never had the opportunity so I don’t even know how to do that. Well, I do know how to do the Electric Side but doesn’t everyone?

I would love to learn how to dance. I don’t mean the kind of stuff you see in the clubs because I would die if I ever had to grind on someone just to get them to notice me. I got a personality for that. But I would love to learn how to slow dance, like you see in movies because I think it’s so graceful how they move like their on air. I really don’t want to learn the ChaCha or Tango because while I have rhythm, it’s mostly sitting down and there is little chance of my feet getting tied up and falling. Line dancing probably wouldn’t be a good idea either because even sober, I look crazy dancing. I know it’s not hard to learn how to slow dance, but I’ve never had someone ask me. I sometimes have dreams that I’m slow dancing with someone and I’m so good at it, but I realize that I stink at it.

Maybe one of these years I will eventually learn the simple task of even just learning to dance without looking like an idiot because I know that’s what I must look like while dancing. I can’t head bang the rest of my life!

Late Night Thoughts September 2, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in dating, Feelings, learning, life, love, relationships, thoughts.
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1 comment so far

Once I get in a mindset that I’m gonna do something, unless nothing else major is going on, its usually the last thing I think of as I drift off to sleep.

As I was laying in bed to fall asleep last night, my thoughts once again turned to relationships. More specifically, where my past ones went wrong. I know its not good to dwell on the past, but this wasn’t reminiscing- it was taking notes. As I thought through every past relationship, I realized it wasn’t my fault they ended. It was their’s.

Why do I say that? Because even with my first relationship at 21, I was more mature. He was a tall blond 30-something that played video games constantly. We never talked seriously. The next relationship came a year later and only lasted 5 months because he thought he was better than my family and I. Same thing with the next one. This past relationship ended because we were just too different. He was a thug that used to steal while I had my head on straight.

I’ve realized that I have to be picky about beaus. While I’d love to still consider “Cyber Guy” (the one I had the HUGE crush on), he just lives too far. I’d never see him and phone cards cost too much to talk on the phone every day. Not to mention we hardly talk. But I still think he’s sexy. Hehe

I’m usually not picky about looks because I would hate someone to judge me because of the way I look. As far as personalities, as long as they were nice to me and my family, I didn’t mind. Maybe that’s where I went wrong. Sure, they were good-looking (as far as I thought) and they had nice personalities, but a nice personality can get you so far. As I get older, I’m starting to realize that maybe I can start being a little pickier on who I choose. I want someone with an amazing personality and a smile that makes my heart skip a beat. And maybe a goatee.

Purrfect Play Cat Toy Giveaway- ENDED September 1, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, Blog Giveaways, cats, Giveaways, Pets, Product Reviews, Reviews, thoughts.
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As you know, my house has 2 kittens that are bundles of energy- constantly trying to run, scamper, playing with each other (sometimes having needed to be pulled apart because they play too rough), playing with us humans, and playing with Mommy cat. They are at that stage where they also want to play with other things like catalogs, books, and sometimes the TV remote.

Our friends at Purrfect Play sent our kitties some toys to play with. The kittens got the Dust Bunnies (which are wool wrapped into pompoms). Even Mommy cat got a couple of Wool Balls and a Brown Organic Fleece Mouse (crafted from naturally brown organic cotton fleece) for those “needing a break” times. All of Purrfect Play’s items are organic and dye-free to keep your pet healthy without all the icky chemicals that can sometimes be found in our pet toys. They not only offer toys for kitties, they also have doggie toys and gifts for people!

tbkit1So what was the verdict of the Dust Bunnies? The kittens weren’t too sure at first but when they realized they were tbkit2toys, they loved them. They even sat up with it in their mouths. Mommy cat loved the Brown Organic Fleece Mouse (maybe because it had catnip in it) and it gave her tons of energy that she was able to play with her kittens. She also loved the Wool Balls, pawing them to where they would roll off the bed. I hadn’t seen her had that much fun in a long time! I snapped pictures of kittens Brother and Sister playing but didn’t get a chance because once Mommy cat knows she’s getting her picture taken, she stops playing.

Visit their blog to lots of fun and don’t forget to sign up for their newsletter because it’s chock full of pet toys and info!

Because our fur babies loved them, we want you to try them out too! Purrfect Play is giving a Texas Banter reader the opportunity to win 6 Wooly Dust Bunnies.

Neither kitten was given any catnip.

WIN IT

One (1) reader of Texas Banter will win 6 Wooly Dust Bunnies.

To enter, visit Purrfect Play. Come back and tell me what other item you or your dog/cat would enjoy!

THIS IS MANDATORY! “Enter me” or “Nice giveaway” does not constitute as an entry and will be removed. YOU MUST LEAVE A VALID E-MAIL TO ENTER! OPEN TO U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY.

Extra Entries (8): Leave a separate comment for each entry and/or link.

*Follow me on Twitter (Username- texasheartland.)
*Subscribe to Texas Banter Mailing List (via E-Mail, Google Reader, etc.)
*Tweet about this giveaway (profile link or status link- Enter the Purrfect Play Cat Toy Giveaway on TB! http://tinyurl.com/kkt8kq @texasheartland)
*Follow Manders on Twitter (Username- confettidreams.)
*Add my Texas Banter Button
*Blog about this giveaway
*Leave a comment on their blog.
*Subscribe to their newsletter.

The giveaway starts on Tuesday, September 1st upon going “live” and will end on Tuesday, September 15th at 11:59PM CST. Entries submitted after that time are voided and are not counted.

Winners have 48 hours to respond to the winning notification. If the winner(s) have not responded within the 48 hours, a new winner(s) will be chosen.

All winners chosen via Random.org.

Fall is coming! Fall is coming! August 31, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in fall, Feelings, fun, life, random, Seasons, summer, thoughts, winter.
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3 comments

Sometime last week (I think it was Thursday), a “cool” front came through Central Texas. While it isn’t exactly “cool” by any means, except a night, it certainly has made it less hot! We have taken a break from those continuous triple digit highs and are now in the lower to mid 90’s. While most people tend to think that it is still hot while in the 90’s, it is like a sigh of relief for us Texans. After 60+ days with temperatures over 100*, 90’s are a pretty exciting thing!

Last night, around 7 pm, we took Zeus outside to play in his pool. As I stepped outside, it felt like Spring! It wasn’t humid or muggy. It wasn’t unbearably hot. It was so nice and had a little cool breeze blowing through! I didn’t want to go inside. But since Zeus got too excited and wanted to bite, we had to bring him inside. Another exciting factor is that somewhere in Indiana yesterday at like 1PM, they were at 64*! And leaves are starting to fall in other parts of the country. Yippie!

That means Fall is coming sooner (since we had such an early Summer) and that gets me excited! Goodbye flip flops, hello hoodies! While I could live in flip flops, I patiently wait for the day I can get rid of shorts and wear pants, sweaters, and my lovable hoodie. I love the feel of a chilly Fall as it sends a chill up and down my spine. I love the cool wind blowing my long black hair across my face, making my face cool. I love seeing all the trees change color. I love seeing all the little woodland (okay, city woodland) creatures come out and gather their food for the winter. And early Fall also means one thing- an early Winter! That would mean that by the time our birthday rolls around in December, it should be frigid- just like when I was younger!

I cannot tell you how excited I am that Fall is finally coming! Summer was too hot. We had little to no rain. We couldn’t take Zeus out very often (except in the evening) because of the heat so he had a lot of pent up energy in the house. All the cats did was sleep. Maybe now we can take Zeus out a couple of times a day and the cats will start running around like they used to. Yippie! Fall is coming! Fall is coming!

I think I’m Ready August 29, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in dating, Feelings, learning, life, love, random, relationships, thoughts.
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2 comments

You know what is so weird? That after everything my family has been through this year, I think I am ready to fall in love once again. I have matured ever since my last relationship considerably and have set my priorities straight.

My last relationship started off great- had a lot in common, enjoyed each others company, and just fell head over hills in love. I thought he was the one but as our relationship went on, I started to realize that maybe he wasn’t the one. I should have known that when we broke up, I didn’t cry much. I maybe cried one day and one night, but it wasn’t like many relationships before where I was an emotional wreck.

So why would I want a relationship after everything my family has been through? I’m much stronger than I’ve ever been, and can hold my own side of the relationship instead of doing what they want to do. Sure there will be times when I wouldn’t mind going bowling (as long as no one is behind me) or the movies. But if I just wanna hang around the house with the family, he can come, but he has to realize that most of it will be spent WITH the family and not in another room. Plus the living room has a bigger TV. With football season in season (well atleast pre-season), that’s the spot to watch the games!

I know my time will come when I find a boyfriend but as most of you have probably come to realize, I’m not a very patient person. But I don’t want to rush love- bad idea. Been there, done that, and got the t-shirt. Maybe if I stop looking or expecting something to happen, I’ll let it happen naturally. Kinda like waiting for Fall- you wait, they will come. Or something like that.

We Say Goodbye to Patches August 20, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, cats, family, Feelings, life, thoughts.
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4 comments

I regret to inform all of you that Patches, Mom’s 4-year-old and Smokie’s cat, passed away unexpectedly this evening. She didn’t show any signs, and we’re all shocked beyond belief.

She was from Smokie’s 2nd litter and for some reason when we decided that Smokie’s kittens needed good homes, nobody wanted Patches. I couldn’t figure out why- hell, she entertained herself. But, we decided to keep her. Patches and Mom grew close and because best friends. Patches was quirky and really weird sometimes. She wasn’t always healthy and often had skin irritations, but she always bounced back. Her and Smokie, during the Fall and Winter months, would always race back and forth from room to room early in the morning while we were all asleep. How do I know that?  They didn’t give it a second thought to jump on the bed. Like Smokie when she was little, she too would scale curtains. Patches was a jumpy cat, but that’s what made it so funny- she would be sleeping, someone would pet her, and she would jump a mile high. One time, she jumped from the shelf to on top of the television and skated right off. It was like the videos you would see on America’s Funniest Videos.

After everything we’re going through, this put me, Manders, and especially Mom over the edge. We don’t know if we can truly handle everything. Patches was only about a month away from turning 5 years old. We will forever miss her for she was a special kitty.

Smokie Talking to Patches

Smokie Talking to Patches

Guest Spots August 20, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Blogging, blogs, Ideas, thoughts.
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3 comments

blogging

I have started thinking outside the box- Texas Banter can only go so far with just 1 person. So I have decided that I will be accepting only 2 guest spots for Texas Banter posts. The criteria is as follows:

*You must have a WordPress.com membership or sign up. You don’t have to use your blog, just sign up.

*You MUST own a blog or have a blog writing experience.

*If you are a “Mommy Blogger”, I ask that you don’t post your children’s information on Texas Banter. While this isn’t a “kid-free” zone, it may  confuse some readers as I don’t have children.

* Send your information -name, blog URL, recent posts, e-mail, and WordPress username- to texasbanter@ymail.com with the subject “TB Guest Blogger”.

With that being said, if you are also interested in having Texas Banter as guest blogger, feel free to e-mail me at the aforementioned e-mail with the subject “Guest Blogger” with your blog name, theme, link, and what you expect from me. I do have a Blogger/Blogspot username.

Back To School: Extraordinary Teens August 19, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Book Reviews, Books, Feelings, learning, life, School, School Supplies, thoughts.
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1 comment so far

With everyone going back to school, it’s so much easier to remember the clothes, school supplies, and even money set out for lunch. But one thing that parents tend to forget: motivation. Since teens are often boggled down with school and extra-curricular activities, it’s quite normal to think “What am I doing this for?”. Believe me- I’ve been there.

But thanks to Chicken Soup for the Soul, your teens can have the motivation they need to go out into the world and do something- if even not everyone agrees with it. If your teen wants to start a business helping people decorate for the Holidays, then this book is for this. Chicken Soup for the Extraordinary Teen is chock full of stories from teens that had no idea what they were doing but succeeded in doing it anyways. There are even stories from some of the most famous teen celebs- Ryan Cabrera, Julie Marie Carrier, and even Mythbuster Kari Byron. All of the stories are heartfelt (which Chicken Soup for the Soul is known for) and so inspirational that no teen will close the book untouched by the stories from these amazing teenagers.

chicken-soup-for-the-soulWhat I loved is that I could remember what it was like at that stage- awkward, uninspired, and just tired of school and nothing to go along with that. I wish I was as creative as the teens in this book. Each story is unique and each story has several sentences bold- true words of wisdom. This guarantees that each and every person that reads it will leave with a little something in their heart that says “I may not be a teen. But I still have plenty of time to do what I want- even if that means starting a business to help people decorate for the Holidays!”. I will warn you about something though. These kids achievements by themselves are staggering so if there are any teens or Moms who are sensitive about their academics, this may not be the book for you. While it it amazing some of the achievements mentioned, sometimes it can get a little overbearing.  But also with that, you can just skip over that box if you wish to read it.

Did I learn anything from it? I may be turning 25 this Winter, but I still learned a lot. I’m not too old to do this or accomplish that. If I can dream it, it can happen. Same goes for everyone who reads this- You’re not too old to do this or accomplish that. If you can dream it, it can happen.

Bye-bye eBay- Hello Amazon! August 19, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Amazon, eBay, Feelings, life, random, shopping, thoughts.
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2 comments

Through a stroke of good luck, I won a $50 gift card to Amazon. At first I had trouble figuring out what to buy because I wanted to buy this and I wanted to buy that but luckily, I thought of a movie that my family loves and decided to buy it. It was Will Vinton’s Claymation Christmas Celebration. When I first saw it when I was a tot, I absolutely loved it and didn’t get it on VHS until a few years ago but that tape has since been lost and we’ve been without our Claymation Christmas!

Claymation Christmas Part 1

So thanks to this gift card, I was able to buy it. The thing on Amazon said it should be here by September 8th, but I was expecting it to ARRIVE ON September 8th. I purchased it on the 16th and it arrived today! Talk about some fast shipping! That’s even better than eBay and I used the standard shipping! I love Amazon a lot better than eBay because while Amazon has its fair share of crooks, you can search for something better and eventually find it. Not to mention that 85% of companies/users fulfill their requirements as to eBay, where you have to sometimes wonder if they’ll actually send the darned thing. With Amazon’s universal wishlist, I am able to add things to my Amazon wishlists from different websites instead of bookmarking each page. With eBay, you have to “watch” the item and grow in disappointment as you watch the bids get higher and knowing you can’t bid on it. With Amazon, you just add it to a wishlist, wait until you can buy it, and away your order goes! I have a couple of more things coming (even 1/2 of Mom’s Christmas gifts). I should get another tomorrow (Mom’s gift)- yippie!

I know it’s 5 months early, but I know what I’ll be watching later!

Summer Memories August 10, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Feelings, life, memories, music, summer, thoughts.
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2 comments

summer_clipart_sunbathing

I’m gonna take you back to about 2003 or 2005. It was July 4th and we were out at the Waco 4th of July event. Besides the fireworks as the main event, country singer/songwriter Anthony Smith was performing. He has written hits for many country artists including George Straight and Trisha Yearwood.

Anyways, I was first in line after his performance at his bus to meet him. I watched the fireworks from there and not even 5 minutes after the fireworks ended, Anthony and his band members walked out of the bus. One member said “I can’t believe we missed them!”. Anthony walks up to me and asks my name. I told him my name and handed him a picture to sign. I ask him if I could take a picture with him (since I had already taken pictures with Blake Shelton, Cory Morrow, and Pat Green years before). He was so nice, he gave me another hug after the picture!

The next day, Monday, I received a check from Country Music Weekly for a survey I sent in. I cashed it and ended up buying his CD. I thought it was really weird that I received the check the day after I met him! Unfortunately, the picture of him and I are in a photo album that’s stashed somewhere so I can’t show you.

That was one of the coolest Summers I remember! Do you have a cool favorite Summer memory?

BTS: Back To Studying August 10, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in back to school, College, Feelings, learning, life, Mathematics, random, thoughts.
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4 comments

Study Skills

Since everyone else got a Summer break from school, I thought I would get a Summer break from studying. And honestly, who can study when the temperature outside can easily reach 100* by Noon and the inside of the bedroom feels like a sauna? Not me!

I understand that it will take me longer to return where I was as I have to go back to a few things and re-study Algebra because I pretty much forgot some of the stuff I learned this past Spring. I know there are some things I will never learn in Algebra. I hate Math and Algebra. I will never use it in my career, so why do I have to learn it? But because it is required for me to know it in order to go college, I will learn it. I won’t like it but I’ll learn it.

I’m actually excited to start studying again. I an only read so much, watch TV so much, and sleep so much before it just becomes boring. Well, sleeping is NEVER boring. In fact, I’d love to sleep in if I could. But now, I am waking up anywhere between 7:30 and 8:30. I’m not happy about it, but my body just won’t let me sleep late. Plus, I felt a sense of accomplishment when I studied. Like I was working on something great. Maybe I was actually learning and didn’t know it.

But as I cracked open the book last night when I started to study again, I found 5 different sections folded down (kind of as my bookmark) and almost started writing in each section because I had forgotten where I was. Eventually I found my notes and the right section. I didn’t do much because it was late at night (almost 10 PM) and I was kinda tired. Am I happy to be studying again? Yes and no. Yes because I might finally be able to take the diagnostic test they have in book without freaking out and no because I suck at Algebra and Geometry. I understand that it’s part of college education, but in my career, I HIGHLY doubt that I’ll be using equations and area in my career.

Moving… August 1, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in blogs, Domains, Ideas, thoughts, Websites.
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3 comments

30_10_2008_9_15_4510_moving_clipart

Now before you think that my family and I are moving, take a deep relaxing breath. Texas Banter is moving! Very soon, I will have my very own .com. This shouldn’t happen for a couple of days/weeks so don’t worry. I decided to make it easier for my readers to find me instead of a big long URL to type in. It will be texasbanter.com. Kinda cool, huh?

You will still be able to find all my posts once I get the website up. Any giveaways going on when we go .com will still be held via THIS website. I don’t want to take away people’s chances of winning some cool prizes. If anyone has any questions, don’t hesitate to e-mail me, Twitter, or leave a message.

CIJ: Retro Christmas July 27, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Christmas, Christmas decor, Christmas in July, family, Feelings, hilarious, life, memories, thoughts.
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4 comments

I was watching the Christmas in July special they had on QVC yesterday and the day before. Yesterday, they had a special segment called “Christmas Memories” where they brought out all sorts of retro Christmas ornaments and decorations. While I don’t remember having any retro Christmas decorations, I thought it would be neat to have a retro Christmas this year!

Instead of putting up a big artificial green Christmas tree, I love the idea of putting up an aluminum Christmas tree with the color wheel! Mom told us about them and ever since that story, I wanted one! I thought it would be so cool to go retro for Christmas, but that also includes the tree! Every year, it frustrates us because we can’t get the lights to go the way we want. They’ll blink when we don’t want them to or they won’t blink when we would prefer they do. So to counterbalance all of that, I want an aluminum tree!

When I was little, Mom used to have this HUGE collection of Santas. I mean, there were a lot. They were given to her as gifts or she would see it, and say “I have to have it!”, thus ended up buying it. But a house fire in 2001 destroyed it all, including everything we had. So one year, Manders and I bought her this beautiful and colorful ceramic Santa that stood a little over 12 inches. Mom loved it. So she put it on a shelf. But one of the cats we had at the moment (I hope it wasn’t Smokie!) jumped on top of the shelf, where we thought they couldn’t reach, and knocked it over. It was broken into a million pieces. So one day, Manders and I decided to start re-collecting Santas for Mom. But this time, I would love to give her a retro Santa! It just brings back that magic that Christmas held close as children.

I don’t know if anyone remembers these, but way back when, they started making plastic Santas that you could put out in your yard and there was a light so Santa could shine. I believe they also had Frosty and Toy Soldiers. As I was watching QVC’s “Christmas in July” event, they had a Toy Soldier ornament. It brought back the image of those plastic Toy Soldier’s outdoor decorations and I thought it would be so neat, if I can ever find them, to snag 2 and place them outside. I know as older people drive by, they will be reminded of Christmases that features these outside their home. It would bring back a lot of memories.

I would love to buy all the retro Christmas decorations I can and just make on Christmas completely retro- down to even the tiniest decoration! I think it’s because it was a simpler time when Christmas didn’t mean the hottest iPhones or the coolest toys. It was about family and being together. I think most of society has lost that idea and I would like to see it come back!

“V” Shape July 26, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, Autumn, dogs, fall, Feelings, life, random, Seasons, Texas, thoughts.
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4 comments

It’s been a few days since Zeus has been outside due to the fact that Mom and and I haven’t been feeling our best the past few days. We both suffer from ulcers (which is normal for some who have had their gallbladders removed), and on top of that, I was having issues with my sinuses. Of course, for us sinus sufferers, this isn’t something new. Summer always brings out the worst of allergens and I am always sniffling or stocking up on tissue. I hate Summer. LOL Have I mentioned that before?

geesev_bigSo last night, Manders and I decided to take Zeus out to play in his kiddie pool we had bought for him. As he splashed around, getting us wet, I looked up at the sky and saw birds flying in a “V” formation. A chill ran down my spine. Seeing that, for me, means cooler weather will soon be here. It has also been getting darker sooner. That’s another great sign! Texas has had such a brutal Summer that any sign of cooler weather just sends our hears aflutter. Most Texans enjoy the Summer, though I’m sure they changed their minds this time as temperatures easily hit 108* by the time it’s 3PM. As I look to see what the temperatures are for the rest of the week, I can’t help but smile. It seems as if the triple digit heat will leave us alone atleast until Friday.

I love Texas in the Fall. It’s absolutely gorgeous. As the setting Sun hits the oak tree in the back in November, its as if the tree were on fire. Seeing the kitten that lives outside play as the leaves fall around him, not sure which leaf to play with since there are so many. Watching a squirrel forage for food before Winter arrives as he brushes past huge bundles of fallen leaves. Watching the trees change from Summer green to burnt orange right before your very eyes.

Texas is beautiful in the Fall. I love Texas.