Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Easter Decorating 2018 and a Chat

I didn't buy many new Easter decorations this year.  We are not having
any guests for dinner because we don't have any family here.  We will
be staying at home.  One year we went to our Club for Easter brunch, 
but that turned out to be depressing.  Everyone was there with their 
families, and David and I were sitting at a table alone.  We felt so out
of place and couldn't wait to get back home.  So this year, we will
stay home.  I don't know what I will make for dinner.  Have not thought
that far ahead.  I think the Masters Golf Tournament is this 
weekend, so I will definitely be making pimento cheese sandwiches.
If the weather is nice, I will probably work out in the yard.

Anyway, I hope that y'all enjoy some of the decorations I put 
together this year.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, March 26, 2018

Political Pillow Talk

Last night's interview on 60 Minutes with Stormy Daniels was a 
big audience grabber for the show.  They had their highest ratings in
10 years!  

Of course they did ~ because sex sells! 

Did I watch the show???  No I did not.  Am I surprised by the
allegations?  No, I am not.  Am I upset by these allegations?
Once again, the answer is emphatically no!

Sex outside of marriage is in not a new story in the world of
politics, power, or by the resident of the White House.  So,
why would I allow this current accusation disturb me???
It sounds like business as usual to me.

I stopped being naive a long, long, time ago.  While I live
in my own little bubble of puppies, cottage decorating and my
love for "G" rated old movies, I am not unaware of the tawdry
world that lives just outside my doorstep.  In fact, I purposely
maintain a "Leave It To Beaver" world to keep my sanity intact.

History and particularly the history of our country's leaders shows us
that extramarital sexual affairs have taken place numerous times by
presidents of both political parties.  Some of our most beloved leaders
have carried on torrid affairs, yet that didn't stop them from leading
the country in whatever fashion they chose.  

The list of dalliances is a long one, and I will only touch upon the
ones within say the last 100 years.  I will also say that primarily, the
other woman was not of the current "me too" mindset, but was a
willing participant in the affair.

FDR carried on a very long term affair with Lucy Mercer.  Lucy
was originally hired to be Eleanor Roosevelt's social secretary.   Let's 
just say that Lucy expanded upon her social networking duties.  
This was a very painful situation for poor Eleanor.  A real slap in 
the face for the woman who was the President's trusting and 
faithful wife.  I can only imagine the humiliation she must have

President Eisenhower had his Kay Summersby.  Let's not 
assume that only the Democrats have game ;-)

Then there is the Kennedy family.  JFK and his brothers,
Bobby and Teddy were no strangers to extra marital affairs.
That should not be too surprising because their father,
Joseph Kennedy Sr, had a long term affair with the old
movie star, Gloria Swanson.  You might not know much about
Gloria, but I am sure many of you have seen this famous
film clip of an aging film star trying to capture an audience
when she is well past her prime ...  

Apparently George HW Bush cheated on Barbara.  Most 
everyone seemed to love Barbara, but maybe she was a bit too
matronly for old George.  

And of course there is Bill Clinton who had a string of women
who accused him of extramarital affairs.  I can't even remember
all of their names, or how many of them there were.  What I do
remember was that back when all the stories about Bill and 
Monica came out, the Democrats were saying ...

"It's just sex"

No one can accuse Jimmy Carter of cheating in the physical 
sense, but he did admit to lusting after women in his mind.

I am including an article from The New Yorker, written
several years ago on this subject.  You can learn more from it
should you care to read it.  The link is at the end of this post.

Do I wish our leaders were faithful to their wives?
Of course I do.  I know that there is a very good chance
that they won't be faithful.  I also know that when one enters
the arena of power, marriages are often not love stories, but
rather are unions of strategic planning.  

I had a relative who was very successful and made a great 
deal of money.  His wife often found women flirting with
him and doing what they could to get his attention.   When
his wife got a bit jealous he told her "don't worry honey, they
only want me for my brick and mortar".  When a man is 
powerful and or wealthy, there will always be another woman
who will want part of his world.  Sadly, men are often weak
to the wiles of the other woman, and there are those women
who are only too anxious to fill the need.

I won't change the way the world operates.  Sex sells and
affairs will always be part of the political world.  As long
as the leader defends our nation and protects our rights,
I am not going to be dissuaded from their service to our

Here is the link to the article in the The New Yorker.
Thanks for reading.  I will return y'all to my world of
puppies and cottages in my next post.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Wake Up to a Bunny Breakfast Tray

The weather has been so lovely lately here in South Texas.  We have warm breezes
and sunshine.  The azaleas have been in full bloom all over town.  It's that time of
year when the white flowers of the Ligustrum fill the air with their perfume.  When
I open the door to my back porch, their fragrance is the first thing I notice.

The hummingbirds have returned.   I am late getting the feeders ready because
we were out of town.  Today they will all be washed and filled with nectar.
This is just the sweetest time.  The ginger that froze and was cut back down to
the ground is suddenly growing by inches overnight.  This is nature's time for
rebirth and there is a sense of joy and peace everywhere.

At the start of each new season, I think, ah .... this is my favorite.
Summer means flip flops and a sense of freedom.  Fall is when we get
back to business and get cozy and warm while we do it.  Winter is
a glowing fireplace and the Christmas season.  It's a time for deep
sleep.  But Spring, glorious spring, wraps us in warm breezes, sweet
fragrance and the belief that all is new and fresh once again.

Happy Spring Y'All!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

At Long Last Spring!

The breezes are warmer, the days are longer and the world seems
to be awash in pastels.  

Spring is here at last!

Happy Spring everyone!  I am headed back outside to get my planter
boxes ready for some more caladium bulbs.  So happy to be digging in
the soil once again.  In just a few short weeks my patio and my
back porch will be ready for it's 2018 Spring reveal!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Thursday, March 15, 2018

My Azaleas

Despite the battering of Hurricane Harvey last August, my azaleas 
are back in full force.  This is the north side of our house where they
get bright light, but not as much sun.  This long bed of azaleas stretches
from a window in the living room (that's the window with the shutters)
to below the large window in the dining room to under the window
in the kitchen, to the doorway to the breezeway.

See that shuttered door next to the coach lamp?  It's the doorway
that leads to the breezeway between the house and the garage.  
This gives you an idea of how tall these azaleas are!  As you can
see in the photo ~ there are still lots of buds left to open on the
branches in the right corner.  

When I walk out the breezeway headed to the driveway, this is what
greets me.  So pretty!  I wish they would last forever.  

Thanks for stopping by.  Lot's of yard work to do.  The live oaks are
still dropping leaves in preparation for Spring, and I am busy doing 
lots of leaf raking.  A real calorie burner for sure!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, March 12, 2018

A Mini Floor Lamp Makeover

I found a miniature floor lamp for the little girl's room in the dollhouse.
I decided to paint it to fit the decor.  It also came with three shades, and
I choose the plain white one and added a bit of trim.

Here it is fully tweaked.  Now the cozy reading corner is complete.
Dollhouse decor needs to be tweaked just like full size decor does ;-)

Bunnies and Easter decor is appearing too.

Y'all are welcome to visit, but sorry, no boys allowed!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Friday, March 9, 2018

Thoughts About Springing Forward and Other Things

Good morning and happy Friday from my studio.  Actually, it's going
on noon already, but time does fly by when I am busy.  Bentley and
I have been in the studio for several hours this morning.  I have been
busy curating my English cozy cottage kitchen for the new dollhouse
I am working on.   I have found some wonderful things for this new
project and will be so excited to share with you when I am farther
along.  However, this morning I would like to chat with you and 
share my thoughts about daylight savings time.

I love the longer light filled evenings of the spring and summer.  My
problem with springing forward is that I don't seem to adapt very 
quickly to the change.  Every time we switch, I try my best to stay
positive and go with the flow, but I end up dragging my heels a bit.
Jumping an hour forward is the hardest for me.  My internal clock is
shouting life goes by fast enough as it is, why force to me to lose an

Of course I realize that I will get that hour back in the Fall, but 
that is months away, and I want it now.  I might need it for sleep
or something, and I do value my sleep.

Which brings me to another topic ....  thankfully I have been 
sleeping much better lately.  I attribute this happy gift to the fact
that I have been very diligent about working out and also
walking at least 10,000 steps each day.  I have been doing
aerobics, pilates, and Ballet Beautiful ~ which is a killer
by the way, but gives great results.  I have also been avoiding
sugar and have been focusing on a healthy diet.  I started this 
program in January, and the results are really kicking in now.

I think I probably told y'all this, but I have been plagued 
 with painful Fibromyalgia.  I was diagnosed with Chronic
Fatigue Syndrome some years ago and suffer from flare ups when I
am under too much stress.  When I have flare ups, my joints hurt
here, there and everywhere.  It's as though the pain travels all over
my body yet doesn't stay in one place for too long.  It is exhausting
and in the past I was inclined to just want to curl up and nap all

This cycle of pain really increased following Hurricane Harvey.
I tried to ignore it at first, but eventually I knew I had to learn to
control it.  Now, after two months of this new regime, I am pain
free and more relaxed too.  The other bonus is improved sleep.
I wear a FitBit on my wrist and it tracks my sleep at night.  
I used to suffer through multiple periods of restlessness during the
night.  Now, I close my eyes, fall asleep and have no restlessness
at all.  Amazing!!!

If y'all want me to go into more detail about this new exercise and diet
program, let me know.  I am hoping that I will just breeze through the
loss of an hour during the wee hours of Sunday.  I feel so good right
now that I think it will be a snap.

I have probably rambled on long enough and should get back to work.
I have the dollhouse project, as well as some others.  Oh, and I am
putting some pork ribs in the oven to slow bake.  I will be sharing that 
recipe with you too.  Let's not forget the pics of azaleas starting to 
bloom in my yard and all over town.

Have a great weekend!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Have Breakfast With a Bunny

I have a large bag full of cupcake decorating picks, and though to myself,
hmm ... why not use them for other things too???

So I stuck a bunny pick in my bowl of bran flakes and it made me smile.

We are never too old for a little breakfast cheer :-)

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Fabulous Antique Dog Finds

Last weekend we were in Houston to attend a wedding, but I also found
the time to visit one of my favorite antique malls.  This particular mall
has some fabulous vendors.  There were a number of pieces that caught
my eye, especially those with dog themes.

The fabric on this French arm chair is stunning!  I can envision this
chair in a man's study or library.  Beautiful warm colors and such
handsome hunting dogs.  

I would love to find this fabric, and I will be on the hunt.

I also found this wonderful floor cloth.  I have never seen one like this
before.  I sure would love to have this in our master bedroom sitting

Look at the adorable face on this framed needlepoint of a 
Wire Hair Terrier.  Beautiful frame too.  I really should start
some needlepoint projects again.  I used to love it.

Cute Pug on a waste bin.  

Vintage Scottie complete with monogrammed brushes.  

And finally, this adorable vintage tin covered with Wire Fox Terriers.

The antiques at this mall are fabulous, but pricey.  I did purchase a Toby
Jug lamp here a couple of years ago.  I am glad that I did because I do love
it so.  This time I walked away empty handed because I am saving my
antiquing money for Antique Week in Round Top that starts in a couple
of weeks.  It sure was fun browsing, and I will certainly come back again.
Hope y'all enjoyed a brief tour.  Have a great Wednesday!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Monday, March 5, 2018

Hopping By To Chat From The Heart

We just returned from a long weekend in Houston.  It was an
eventful couple of days, but I am very happy to be back home.

Have you ever had the feeling that your guardian angel is
tugging your sleeve?  Little signs that you chose to ignore are
suddenly catching up to you and demanding your attention?

For a long period of time I have struggled with a particular
relationship.  I gave in and tried to forget the past to
protect the heart of someone I love.  This was not an easy
thing for me to do, and I wrestled with the past to move on to
the future.  When we lived in Idaho, I never believed that
I would have to confront that tumultuous past again, but 
when we returned to Texas, I realized that there was not
much I could do to avoid it. 

So here I am, in the midst of it once again.  It's not my
battle, but I seem to be collateral damage.  I realize that
what I am saying is terribly vague, and I am not giving you
any details you can cling to for understanding of this
situation.  I apologize for that, but do so because while
the details of this predicament are explosive, I won't exploit
them to protect those who are innocent. 

What I can tell you is this ~ there are two types of people
who respond to drama, those who create it, and those who
feed on it.  I don't want to be in either group.  When a
situation becomes uncomfortable, and my guardian angel
starts tugging on my sleeve, I pay attention.  I put on God's
armor and I retreat to the safety of His love.

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley 

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Welcome March 2018!

Happy 1st day of March y'all!

What a lovely morning!  The sun is shining!!  I was beginning to 
believe that we would never see it again, but here it is in all it's glory,
and I am so thankful.  I feel as though I just had an injection of
pure joy, and that joy is running through my veins.

As I am sitting here in my studio, the sun is streaming through 
the windows and it makes everything look so sweet and happy.
I plan to carry this sunny happiness with me throughout the day.

We are one day closer to the first official day of spring.  It's been a long,
hard winter, but we have survived.  I think we all deserve some sun,
and warmer breezes and flowers.  Lots of flowers for our future.
Wishing y'all a bless day!

Big Texas Hugs,
Susan and Bentley


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