Monday, February 17, 2014

Although I have been to Bandera numerous times, I had never visited the local museum.  I'm glad I finally did.
It was built to showcase the western collection of Marvin Hunter, noted historian, journalist and author, who moved to Bandera in 1921.

A Martin Luther Bible, an original German translation, printed in the 1800s.

Mrs. Gordon was married to a Commander of Royal British Navy and traveled extensively throughout her life before settling in San Antonio as a widow.  She collected bells and after meeting Marvin Hunter, left her collection of over 400 bells to his museum.

There are two cabinets full of her bells. 

One of the first electrical curling irons.

I really am glad they have improved since this model.

More of Mrs. Gordon's collection of items from around the world.

I had never seen what raw oil looked like before.

An old hand-made baby incubator.

The museum, of course, had a collection of saddles and gear from the many cowboys which made Bandera the "Cowboy Capitol of the World".

To celebrate the town's heritage as cowboy town of cattle drives, there is a gunfight held in the town square on weekends.

Just down the road 13 miles is the town of Medina and it's famous Apple Store.  We caught them preparing one of their famous apple pies.  You can indulge in a piece of apple pie or an entire pie, apple cookies, apple struedel or apple turnovers as well as apple ice cream or apple butter.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Volunteering with the NOMADS

When I thought I was going to be working for Amazon in Coffeyville, KS (before my medical problems), I signed up for some disaster relief work in Bastrop, TX.  NOMADs, a Methodist associated volunteer group, was doing home rebuilding work in Bastrop, where a fire several years ago destroyed over 1400 homes and businesses.
The first project I spent the week painting.

This home had been entirely built by volunteers.  By the time I arrived the only thing left to do was the painting inside and some final trim work.

The next week's project I spent laying two rooms of laminate flooring.  It was actually fun.  My two weeks volunteer work was over before I realized.

My last evening the group went out to dinner.

There were some frigid days while I was there.  This man had a fountain in his front yard which created some really wild ice sculptures.

I also enjoyed the crazy wire sculptures in the area.  How would you like Big Bird to hold your mailbox?

This wire scarecrow was located in the garden.

Using an old plow, it looked like some alien from outer space was holding this group of mailboxes.

So all too soon it was time to move on.

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Holidays

Risen Savior Lutheran Church had a woman's Christmas luncheon.  We were entertained with these ladies and their skit about proper etiquette.

I got to visit my grandkids in Oklahoma City.

On the way to Tahlequah, OK, I stopped at this historical marker in Dexter, KS.  I guess the drillers were quite surprised when their well didn't burn the way most oil and natural gas wells do.  But evidently, this well was instrumental in providing helium for Navy dirigibles in the late 1920s, and then again in the 1950s when the demand became necessary for nuclear reactors and missisles.  Sadly, today, this town is not much more than a ghost town.

One of my favorite restaurants in Oklahoma was Del Rancho.  They had the best chicken fried steak sandwiches.  I thought they were out of business, but here they were in Tahlequah.

Of course, I had to have one.  They were still as great as I remembered.  And yes, the steak really was that much larger than the bun.

I spent a few days before Christmas with my son, Aaron, his wife, Holly, and the grandkids, Adrion and Gavin.

This quilt came from my grandmother, who passed away before I was born.  I found the quilt top in a box when I was cleaning out my mothers house.  A friend in Mississippi still hand quilts and I sent it to her to finish.  The quilt top was all hand pieced and over 60 years old.  I wanted it to be hand quilted as it was finished.

After I headed to Oklahoma City, Aaron took the boys to a local ice skating rink.  Adrion seems a natural.

Gavin is just now getting his legs underneath him, but he does better than I probably would.
I wanted to spend Christmas also with the grandkids in Oklahoma City, so about mid day on Christmas, I took the RV and headed to Oklahoma City.

I arrived in time to be with the grandkids on Christmas evening.  Here is (L-R) Cale, Colin, Carter and Caitlin.

I actually got Amy to pose in front of the tree too.

Although I didn't get any pictures, my church in Edmond has put in a couple of electrical plugs and I stayed in their parking lot while in Oklahoma City.  It's a great idea for members family and friends or even traveling members like myself, to be able to park in the church parking lot.  In fact, I wasn't the only one there, someone else was taking advantage of the opportunity.

I returned to Amy's house the next day to help the grandkids experiment with the mentos project (which was one of the presents I had brought them).  We tried it with various sodas and it did seem to work better with sprite (which is what the instructions called for).  But sadly, it didn't spray as high as some of the you tube videos I've been.  Needless to say, we still had a fun time.  

This was one of my favorite presents, a coffee cup with the grandkids pictures.