Tag Archives: everyday life

Saturday With My Sisters~ My CRHP Sisters

26 Jan

“A sister is God’s way of proving He doesn’t want us to walk alone.”

~ Unknown

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This afternoon, I spent a few hours with my CRHP 28 sisters. (CRHP stands for Christ Renews His Parish) These are the ladies from St. Gabriel the Archangel Church that I met at our women’s retreat a couple of years ago. It was a beautiful, powerful, and spiritual weekend with total strangers who became sisters. After our two day retreat, we spent the next six months meeting once a week to plan the retreat for the next group of ladies of CRHP 29. Another wonderful enlightening weekend.

Our group was asked to prepare and provide lunch for the CRHP 33 ladies today. Other groups volunteer to come to provide other meals for the weekend. It was so nice to visit with some of these “sisters” that I don’t get to see too often, maybe a hello or a hug before Sunday Mass, or sometimes just when serving these meals.

Even Father Don stopped by for lunch and a visit.

Here’s a couple of photos of my sweet sisters from other gatherings. We are truly blessed.

Like our biological sisters, we may not see each other often, but we are still true sisters in our hearts.

This is a perfect quote.

Friday:) This is Texas~ Go Big or Go Home

25 Jan

“This is America. We’re entitled to our opinions.”

“Wrong. This is Texas. And my opinion is the only one that counts.”

― Susan Elizabeth Phillips

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I wasn’t born in Texas, but I got here as quick as I could. I’m sure you’ve heard that before, but it’s true. Everything is bigger in Texas, so they say. I like that. It seems pretty appropriate today. When I cook, I cook big, when I bake, I bake big. Then, there’s Black Russian Friday.

Another day of counting my blessings. Mr. Mike came over this morning to finish installing my Ring Doorbell. I have the greatest friends and neighbors. I like the concept that sometimes God sends you angels and sometimes YOU are asked to be an angel for someone else.

While Mr. Mike was busy with the tedious installation, with several frustrating problems with wifi and settings, I received a text from my neighbor Allison. She said that she ended up in the emergency room yesterday with pneumonia and severe flu symptoms, and was feeling horrible. I asked her if there was anything I could do for her or pick up from the store. She was so thankful and gave me a short list of needed items from the store like soup, jello, ginger ale, orange juice, etc. I went to the store and dropped them off at her house.

We are all here to help each other. Good neighbors, good friends.

When I got home, I had a lot of cooking to do. I was a member of St. Gabriel’s women’s CRHP retreat a couple of years ago, and previous members are asked to provide meals for the new retreat members. They meet this weekend. Of course, I signed up for brownies. That’s my specialty.

Then, I felt guilty just making brownies. Too easy. So, I said I’d make pasta salad. Not just a bowl of pasta salad, but two huge bowls of pasta salad, starting with five bags of penne pasta. No recipe, just a lot of chopping, dicing, and love. “Go big or go home.” Very yummy.

To end my Go Big day, it’s Friday, so I decided to Go Big on my Black Russian Friday. A taller, bigger glass just means fewer refills along the way.

Happy Friday, my friends.

Theme Song Thursday:) LEAN ON ME

24 Jan

” There’s nothing we can’t accomplish if we just lean on each other.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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What a wonderful day of sharing, caring, friendship, peaceful prayer, and silly singing. I am so blessed.

When it comes to blessings, I have more than my fair share. I started out my morning running errands, bank, post office, and grocery store. One of my stops was at St. Gabriel for Adoration. A few prayers for those in need, light a candle, but most of all, just to say THANK YOU FOR MY BLESSINGS, my constant prayer.

When I got home, I gathered up several bags of food donations that I had for Holy Family School and a couple of bags for Community Lifeline. When the store has a great sale, I stock up to share with others, and every couple of weeks, I drive over with my donations.

Last week, I took some cereal and granola bars for the adorable preschoolers over at Holy Family School. This week, I took some oranges, gold fish crackers, peanut butter and apple juice.

My visits and donations are always appreciated by Miss Sondra and the staff. My thought is if everyone helps just a little bit, so much would get accomplished.

My next stop was Community Lifeline with some canned goods and pasta for the food pantry.

It seems like the more I give, the more I get back. When I got home, my neighbor and good friend, Mr. Mike, came over to replace my broken Ring Doorbell security system, and to install a security camera in my back yard. Needless to say, Mr. Mike is in security, and he takes very good care of me. I have the best neighbors. We look out for each other. While he worked on the installation, I made a huge pot of mostaccioli for his dinner. More like enough for a few days. I love to cook.

Now, for the rest of my fun evening. Tonight was karaoke at Delaney’s with the regular suspects, more great friends. We tend to lean on each other and share good times and bad. Just like the song says, “Lean on me..” We have the greatest time. How lucky am I!

https://youtu.be/82BmY4VhQUU

Life is good. Thanks Miss Loretta.

Tuesday:) Toni’s Tip of the Day

22 Jan

“I found the best way to be productive is to balance a little fun with a little work.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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As you may already know, I am a master of procrastination. I swore that I would start out the new year with trying to get organized and be more productive. Instead, I’ve been running around going to dances, parties, lunches, movies, and having way too much fun.

So, after all my birthday celebrations, which lasted about three weeks, I decided to balance a little fun with a little organizing. This week, I took all the hundreds of teeny tiny plastic containers and dozens of large Tupperware type containers out of the cabinet and get those organized. It was an all day event. I didn’t really toss too many things, but just getting them organized saved a lot of space.

The next day, I was able to have fun and go and have a craft day with the girls. Balance.

Today, I organized the junk drawer with all those pesky rubber bands, pens, scissors, notepads, etc. Then, worked upstairs in my “crap room” for about an hour.

Then, I stopped over at Fire Station 9 and took them some of my homemade three bean/corn salsa and chips. Afterwards, I went and picked up Jerry on our way to Loretta’s place for dinner with the gang. A little work, a little fun.

So, I’m starting to be more productive now. A couple of hours of chores and organizing, balanced with four or five hours of fun with friends. Now, that’s how it should be done. “All work and no play….”

Montage Monday and Memorable Moments

21 Jan

“Your memories are a reflection of your heart and soul, so guard your heart and feed your soul.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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That’s what life is for: warm friendships, memorable moments, and beautiful words.”

― Avijeet Das

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A wonderful week with more birthday celebrations, lunches, gifts, movies, and time with good friends. A week of counting my blessings.

A week in a peek…

Then, to add more blessings to my day, I received a text from my friend Lynne. She was inviting a few friends over for an impromptu artsy/craftsy afternoon. She said, to just bring something fun to work on and she would provide refreshments. What a great idea. No time to think or plan. Just grab a few paints, brushes, and unfinished projects. Perfect.

Lynne, Sherri, Sherry, and yours truly. I have he sweetest, most talented friends.

Sunday Sermon, a Sunset, and Some Other Stuff

20 Jan

“Every day is a good day. There is something to learn, care and celebrate.”

― Amit Ray

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A glorious Sunday morning, a little cool, 34 degrees, but I was happy because it was sock monkey hat weather. A lot of hugs and handshakes greeting before Mass. I always look forward to Sunday morning.

Today’s Gospel was the story of John the Baptist seeing Jesus walking towards him and proclaiming Him the Son of God.

John testified further, saying,

“I saw the Spirit come down like a dove from heaven

and remain upon him.

I did not know him,

but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me,

‘On whomever you see the Spirit come down and remain,

he is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’

Now I have seen and testified that he is the Son of God.”

My take on it… John the Baptist believed that a savior was coming, and that a spirit like a dove who came down upon Him was the sign and was proof to John that Jesus was the Son of God. Faith is a very powerful thing. We aren’t always given a sign or miracle to substantiate our beliefs, but some of us have. I truly believe that if you believe, you will receive. I’ve experienced a few miracles in my life.

After Mass, Jerry, Helene and I stopped for coffee and conversation, then a quick stop at the store.

Another birthday celebration planned for the afternoon with my friend Zelda. Nom Nom was my lunch choice. Normally we go to Olive Garden, but we were thinking something different. Can’t beat Nom Nom for great Mexican food that you pick and choose every item in your meal.

The next stop was a movie. There aren’t too many good movies out there that one of us hasn’t seen already. Zelda suggested “Just Mercy.” At first I poo-pooed the suggestion because it sounded sad, but I thought I’d give it a chance, seeing the alternatives were slim to nothing. I was so glad we decided to go see it.

We were both pleasantly and positively surprised. It was kind of sad in the respect that such tragedies and travesties of justice have, and still take place in our country. But, this was based on a true story, and it gives us hope that there are still some good honest caring people in the world. I give it 4 stars **** out of 5. It was a little long in some stretches, but on a whole, very entertaining.

When I was at the movies, there were no less than 10 or 15 buzzing texts on my phone. Only one was from my son Joe, seeing if I wanted to FaceTime with the girls. Missed it. Oops! When we walked out of he theatre, the flaming sunset was blazing in the sky. Look at these colors! The actual colors! Picture perfect.

When I got home, I was able to FaceTime with Belle, but the baby was already asleep. We had a nice conversation, always ending with “Bye, bye. Love you.” Perfect ending to another perfect day. Feeling blessed.

Happy Sunday, my friends. 🙋

Saturday:) Sitting Around Just Counting My Blessings

19 Jan

“Don’t count your dollars to see how rich you are. Count your memories. Count your friends. Count the hugs you get every day. Count what really matters.”

― Toni Sorenson

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When people are asked how much they are worth, I’m sure they usually have a dollar amount in mind. How sad. It’ not how much money you have in the bank, or what kind of house you live in, or what kind of car you drive, it should be how many blessings you have and how much love you feel and receive and share. You can’t put a dollar value on any of that.

Today, I FINALLY got around to reading the little slips of paper in my “GOOD JAR.” I’ve been doing this for a few years. Starting in the beginning of the year, I write down blessings, fun memories, special phone calls or visits with family and friends. I’ve even asked friends to jot something down when they come for a visit. I was still in Chicago January 1st, so I didn’t start recording until I got home. I took the slips of papers, coins, etc., and put them in a bag until I had a chance to sit down and savor each notation. Today was the day.

Some notes were about my sons calling on a Sunday, FaceTime with the grandkids, fun lunches with friends, holidays with my family, Thanksgiving with the Murphy’s, my oldest dearest friend calling to say her lab results were good and the tumor benign, and friends saying how much I mean to them. There were many more blessings in the GOOD JAR.

Also, in the jar were the lucky pennies and coins I would find along my walks or travels. Here’s the run down… A dollar bill, 36 pennies, 8 dimes, 2 nickels, 2 quarters, a 10 centavos coin from España, 1 shiny plastic Texas Lottery coin, a rusty washer, and 3 tiny sea shells from my visit with Matt in CA.

So, if you ask me how much I’m worth today, there’s my breakdown, a couple of dollars in lucky coins to signify my endless luck, and a jar full of memories reminding me of my countless blessings, fabulous friends, and loving family.

After relaxing all day in my warm comfortable house, with nothing to do and nowhere I had to be, counting my blessings and feeling so blessed, I did slip on my shoes and drove over to Fire Station 9 to take them the cute cupcakes Miss Pat sent home with me last night to share with our friends in blue. The guys said, “Thank you, and the peanut butter and jelly cake you sent earlier in the week was fantastic.”

You see, my life is so blessed. And, I’ll keep counting my blessings and put them in a jar for safe keeping. ❤️