Big Country


Last Saturday we said goodbye to my beloved Granddaddy in Abilene, “Big Country”, Texas. It was so nice to see family, some of which we hadn’t seen in many years, although we wish it could have been under happier circumstances. It feels so strange – filled with sadness and happy memories all at the same time – the business of packing up someone’s life; as we went through my Granddaddy’s home, putting things away and boxing things up, I had so many wonderful memories of years past spent in that house – Christmases and summers and happy times…the smell of him lingering in his closet and in his shirts. We cut some pink garden roses from my Granddaddy’s front yard and brought them in a vase to the funeral home; they were so beautiful and I think he would have liked to have his own roses, that he spent so much time growing and caring for, there.

Roses from my Granddaddy's garden

Before we left Abilene on Sunday, we made it a point to take some photos on my Granddaddy’s front porch in the white porch swing we spent time on even as kids. I will miss his pretty little white house on Kirkwood, but most of all I will miss him. I’ll always have wonderful memories though and he will forever be in my heart.

This was one of my favorites: a photo of my brother, my cousin Trina, and I on that white porch swing… Then…


And now…


More photos from our visit to Abilene here.

by Valerie | 05.04.15 | For Funsies | 4 Comments »

Deep in the heart of Texas


We took a long 4th of July holiday and enjoyed a wonderful vacation/road trip to Texas to visit family and friends – had lots of fun, great food, and even better company during our trip! About 20 hours from our home to our final destination and then we turned around and drove back after about a week and a half – yes, that is a LONG time in the car, but we were able to bring Melody along with us which made it all worthwhile. I sometimes forget how much I miss it until I’m back there – the sky, the land, and most importantly the people we love. You can check out more photos from our trip here.

State line

Approaching storm

Fun on the 4th

Gatesville, TX

Gatesville, TX Courthouse

by Valerie | 07.09.14 | For Funsies, Travel | No Comments »

Smile for the camera!

B'nai Mitzvah

As I mentioned in my post here, it was so nice to visit with family in El Paso a couple weeks ago and I enjoyed snapping some photos while we were all together too. Here are some of my favorites… You can find more online here.

B'nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah

And thanks to Debbie for getting this one!

B'nai Mitzvah

by Valerie | 06.10.14 | For Funsies, Photography, Travel | No Comments »

marvelous mitzvah

El Paso - early summer 2014

The photo above is a view of the Franklin Mountains from Temple Mount Sinai, in El Paso, TX, where we enjoyed a wonderful long weekend with family, celebrating my mother-in-law’s and Ryan’s Aunt’s (and 4 others in their group) b’nai mitzvah. It was great to get back to Texas too, but I didn’t miss that blazing hot summer heat – the high in El Paso yesterday was listed at 108! After a very long, very cold winter here though, I must admit that the warmth of the sun and that blue Texas sky were a sight for sore eyes. Even some of the plants look like they’re on fire; we saw lots of cactus, lantana, and this plant in the photo below (anyone know what this is?) all over the place there.

El Paso - early summer 2014

And a trip to Texas is never complete without some Texas BBQ and cold, Texas beer to wash it down with – thank you Rudy’s BBQ! You can browse more photos from our trip here.

Rudy's BBQ

Rudy's BBQ

by Valerie | 06.04.14 | For Funsies, Travel | 1 Comment »

Out in the West Texas Town of El Paso

We flew to El Paso, TX for our Christmas holiday to spend time with family. It was nice to get some sunshine and some warm weather for a change! Unfortunately, all of us were sick for some portion of the Christmas vacation, but we are all finally feeling better and on the mend. Despite our under-the-weatherness, we were able to visit some of our favorite spots and do some of our favorite things while visiting – including eating some delicious Mexican food, a visit to Old Mesilla, Whooppee Bowl antique mall, and seeing some dear friends. Tomorrow, we head back to A2 – where the forecast calls for a high of 21 and snow. I haven’t had to wear my coat, hat, or gloves since we arrived in El Paso 10 days ago, but I’ll have them ready for when we land tomorrow. Happy New Year’s Eve eve!

by Valerie | 12.30.13 | For Funsies, Holidaze, Travel | No Comments »

Small town and countryside

by Valerie | 06.30.13 | Photography, Travel | No Comments »

Beautiful Bat Mitvah

We had the pleasure of traveling back home to Texas in June to visit family and for Abby’s Bat Mitvah. It was really wonderful to visit with family and enjoy all the festivities. And Tina did an amazing job with the desserts and display for the reception! Thank you to Abby, Debbie, and Steve for letting us be a part of Abby’s Bat Mitvah; we love you all and are thrilled to see Abby growing into the beautiful, young woman that she has become.

by Valerie | 06.30.13 | Photography, Travel | No Comments »

TX style

I’m going to take this moment to admit that I have a special place in my heart for Big Red and Rudy’s “Bar-B-Q Sause”.

by Valerie | 06.18.13 | For Funsies, Travel | No Comments »


We were able to get back home to Texas to visit family last week, which was wonderful! We stopped at some delicious restaurants and fun attractions along our way (Chuy’s, Rudy’s BBQ, Dr. Pepper Museum, etc.) and we had some fun with taking these photos

by Valerie | 06.17.13 | For Funsies, Photography, Travel | No Comments »

2012: Week 9

2012: Week 9
Salvage yard

by Valerie | 03.09.12 | Photography | No Comments »

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