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Friday Night Flights of Fancy

1 Aug

“Flying starts from the ground. The more grounded you are, the higher you fly.”

― J.R. Rim

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My days are filled with friendship, family and gratitude, and my Friday night always ends with a yummy chocolate ice cream Black Russian. This isolation and pandemic nightmare keeps us apart, but we have technology to keep us connected.

The early afternoon was a little cooler today, after a refreshing late night rain, so I went for a lovely walk around the pond. This beautiful bird was floating around the edge, I think it’s a crane? It made me think how lucky he is to fly and have that freedom.

LET YOUR HEART TAKE WING

A bird in flight, both day and night

What freedom that must bring.

To soar above, to fall in love

And let your heart take wing.

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis ( I just made this up on the spot. Pretty cool, huh?) I love impromptu poetry. How about you? I could write about a shoe. (Rhyme time- and I haven’t even started drinking yet. I’m just silly)

My day was so exciting that I took a nap in the early evening. Not that I was tired, I was just bored and it was hot and muggy. (Now, I’ll be up all night.)

But, it’s Friday night and time for my traditional Black Russian Friday.

Cheers, my friends.

Quarantined Karaoke In The Kitchen Thursday:) “My Guy”

31 Jul

” The best place for singing and dancing is in the kitchen. That’s my happy place.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Wow! I hope I don’t run out of songs to sing for Quarantined Karaoke Thursday. The road is long, with many a winding turn…. oops. Better save that for another day. Today, singing in the kitchen with my cool karaoke microphone that I got for my birthday. Thanks Jerry.

And of course, our good friend Bob is singing his Quarantined song in his fancy dancy karaoke room in his home. “Maybe Baby.”Thanks for sharing Joni.

🎤 Life is Good when you’re singing, even if you’re quarantined.

Wednesday:) What’s With These Dumb Digital Store Coupons?

30 Jul

“The digital innovation that set out to connect people, has slowly started to tear those people apart both from within and without.”

― Abhijit Naskar

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OK, time for my frustrated rant of the day. Is it just me, or does anyone else have trouble with these so called great grocery store digital coupons? If you download the individual store app and you click on the digital coupon for each item, and you sync up the items in some vast dark corner of your phone, and after they scan your personal secret account bar code or type in your phone number, by some miracle, your total savings will miraculously appear at the end of your receipt when you check out… or maybe NOT. Most likely NOT.

I pride my self on savvy shopping, but when my instrument of technology has conspired with the grocery store to deceive and confuse me, that’s where I draw the line. I did all the right things, and clicked how many items I had and put them in my virtual cart, and I even scanned the bar code on each item.

I purchased a bunch of cereal, juice, snacks, and things to donate to Holy Family School, and I even showed the cashier the sale add and receipt and said, “This rang up at $2.29 and it’s supposed to be $1.29 if you buy five items. I bought five items.” He said, “Yes, I know. Your savings will be listed at the bottom of your receipt.” There were several people behind me in line, so I said OK.

I got home and guess what? Yep, there was NO SAVINGS at the end of my receipt. I purchased 33 items, and the only thing that rang up correctly were the 5 pizzas that I picked up for my neighbor, Mr. Mike, that were on regular sale, not digital coupon sale. WHY CAN’T THEY JUST HAVE A DAMN REGULAR SALE FOR EVERYONE? I have older friends who don’t do store apps on their phones, so they don’t get to take advantage of digital coupons. Well, I guess it doesn’t matter because I don’t either. Do they do that on purpose, hoping you won’t notice?

I’m sick and tired of having to check every item and every sale and every coupon EVERY TIME I go to the grocery store. Can’t they just have a regular sale like the olden days? So guess what? Tomorrow, I’m going back to Kroger and return EVERY SINGLE ITEM, except for Mr. Mike’s pizzas that are already in his freezer, if not eaten already, and get my money back.

Yesterday, I went to Aldi’s. I usually don’t go there because it’s not that close to home. But, I had to run to the bank and it was right next door. I filled up my shopping cart with snacks, juice, cereal, etc., and guess what? Every item was priced comparable to the so called great sale prices at the other store, and there were NO secret super-duper digital coupons for tech savvy only patrons. I may have to change my shopping habits and locations.

OK! I’m done ranting. I need a glass of wine. Oh, I feel better now. OK, here’s another beautiful sunset from my evening walk tonight. Thank goodness for the amazingly awesome things in life.

Toni’s Tuesday Time-Lapse Video:) Bluebonnets on Wine Glasses

29 Jul

“We are now living in a fast paced technological era where every skill that we teach our children becomes obsolete in the 10 to 15 years due to exponentially growing technological advances.”

~Naveen Jain

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Well, its Tuesday and time for another time-lapse painting video. Today, I’m painting Bluebonnets on some really cute large blue tinted wine glasses. Now, if I could really paint this fast… that would be cool.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjuU9JTzj_g

If you ever have any questions on materials, technique, or ideas, just drop me a line.

👩🏻‍🎨

Montage Monday:) A Week In A Peek

28 Jul

“Patience is not the ability to wait. Patience is to be calm no matter what happens, constantly take action to turn it to positive growth opportunities, and have faith to believe that it will all work out in the end while you are waiting.”

― Roy T. Bennett

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The days are long and the weeks even longer. Patience is the only way to survive. That, and keeping really busy with projects and on-line workshops and challenges.

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff

27 Jul

“There is magic in the old and magic in the new; the trick is to successfully combine the two.”

― A.D. Posey

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Another Sunday watching Mass on TV in my pajamas. Quite a few more people are attending services in church, but I’m not quite ready for that yet. Or, maybe they aren’t ready for me to show up to church in my pajamas. Either way, I’m still playing it safe at home.

Today’s Gospel was the three parables about life on earth and heaven…

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. 45″Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it. 47″Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net which was thrown into the sea and gathered fish of every kind; 48when it was full, men drew it ashore and sat down and sorted the good into vessels but threw away the bad. 49So it will be at the close of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous, 50and throw them into the furnace of fire; there men will weep and gnash their teeth. 51″Have you understood all this?” They said to him, “Yes.” 52And he said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.”

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My take on it… Our time here on earth is limited, and although we may have earthly possessions and riches, we should be able to give up everything for what really is of value. Heaven is compared to the net thrown out to sea that gathers all fish, and the good will be sorted from the bad. The true treasure is a combination of the old and the new.

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Now, for a beautiful sunset.

On The Square and Elsewhere ❤️ McKinney

26 Jul

“I always say that I bloom where I’m planted, but I sure have been blessed to be planted in McKinney, TX.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Blessings are to be shared, that’s for sure. It seems like the more you care and the more you share, your blessings multiply tenfold. If you’re anything like me, when you see a great sale at the grocery store, you stock up. OK! Maybe you don’t, but I do. My favorite items to stock up on are items to take over to Holy Family School, over by the Square, to share with the adorable pre-schoolers.

Helene, my partner in crime, and I stock up for a few weeks on snacks, drinks, cereals, baby supplies, or whatever we think they could use. Then, we stop by for a quick drop off about once a month. Miss Sondra and the staff are always so appreciative. Lately, with the distancing thing, we generally just ring the bell and pop the items inside the door and scurry on our way. That’s what we did yesterday.

Since we were so close to The Pantry Restaurant on Louisiana, and it was after lunch time, we stopped by to get a to-go order of their famous chicken fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, and crispy fried okra. It’s enough for two meals. (But, we each got one. Yum!)

Right across the street from The Pantry is the awesome wall mural on the side of Fair and Square Imports, painted by our amazing artist friend, Andrea Holmes, so I had to get a photo op. (I do have my mask on. Safety first.)

McKinney is a great town. Now, saving the best for last, here is just one of the amazing sunsets that blesses the end of my day. Just awesome.

Friday:) Honoring a Friend, Traditions, and My Firemen

25 Jul

“Those we love don’t go away, they walk beside us every day.

Unseen, unheard, but always near; still loved, still missed and very dear.”

~Anonymous

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My cousin Janet is a fine dedicated police officer. She lost a good friend and fellow police officer eight years ago, killed in the line of duty. I haven’t seen my cousin in many years, but we’re family, and I feel her pain. She posted a tribute on Facebook today, so I told her I’d raise a glass tonight in honor of her friend Matt Tyner. It’s National Tequila Day, so “Here’s to you, Matt Tyner.”

Here’s another way to honor those who serve. My friend Jerry mentioned yesterday that he tried to take a big tray of sandwiches that he purchased at the store deli to his local fire station. He drove over there but couldn’t figure out how to contact them to answer the door. He tried the non-emergency number, but no one answered. So, he went home. When I heard that, I said that they probably were on a call. I said that I’d take them over later, as I’d been to Station 5 a zillion times. They were thrilled to receive Jerry Horton’s generous gift. Thanks Jerry!

Originally, I was torn between my Hispanic heritage in honoring National Tequila Day and my traditional Black Russian Friday. So, guess which I chose? You’re right… BOTH. A tequila toast to Officer Matt Tyner and my Black Russian Friday.

Cheers, my friends.

Quarantined Karaoke Thursday:) “Call Me Irresponsible “

24 Jul

“Call me irresponsible, call me unpredictable, call me, really, just call me. I’m going stir Covid Crazy.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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Another crazy Quarantined Karaoke Thursday. I’m starting to feel “irresponsible.” So, I’ll sing a duet with my old friend Michael Bublé.

Of course, our good friend Bob, singing Roy Orbison’s “Crying.” Sing it Bobbo!

Wednesday:) What Wonders I See On My Walk

23 Jul

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”

― W.B. Yeats

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Every day is filled with wonders. I like how Yeats said the world is full of magic things. It certainly is, and we need only open our eyes.

I generally walk the same well worn path pretty much every day, and have for nearly six years, and I never get tired of the sights and sounds. I don’t wear headphones or listen to music. I just appreciate the beauty of each new day, especially the sunsets.

Today, there were a LOT of bold bunnies hopping around in my front yard. They gave me one of those, “What are you looking at?” glances. Yes, very bold, and they didn’t mind posing for a photo op.

When I was over by the pond, there was a baby bird huddled by a curb. I leaned over to see if it was dead or alive or had a broken wing, as it didn’t move. I had a newspaper, so I tried to scoot the little thing onto the paper so I could place him in a safer location. He wriggled and hopped a little, so it was still alive. Good news. THEN, Mamma bird came swooping down at me out of nowhere, squawking and dive bombing me at a frantic pace. Basically, she said, “Get away from Junior or I’ll peck your eyes out, lady!”

I took the hint and backed away, while she flew over to watch me from a nearby mailbox. Junior hopped and fluttered across the street, then back and forth. Obviously, he couldn’t fly yet, but was out for an adventure, so Mamma was on high alert.

There are always great skies and sunsets and birds chirping and kids laughing. I appreciate the sights and sounds of my wondrous walks.