Y’all, almost nine years ago, I blogged one of my rambling, nostalgic posts about plastic cars. Go ahead; you know you want to relive those halcyon days when I had the time to write about nothing in some Seinfeldian way and also when there was a Hump Day Happy. I’ll wait.


Guess what I found on eBay? Work is crazy busy so I can’t play with them, but they are little and cheap and just as I remembered them and wanted them to be. I know an eBay seller who’s going to get ALL the stars for all the cars.

One week later…

It’s been a week since my birthday, but I thought I’d post a few happy photos so I can remember it.

First off, I received an email from Charles The Boss that Monday morning telling me I needed to come to a mandatory meeting at the clinic. I was all, No! On my birthday? But the topic was one of my ongoing concerns so I dragged myself there. Charles’s door was closed, and he wasn’t back from an off-site meeting yet, so Morgan, our Rescue Team Lead, said we could start the meeting in his office without him. I AM SO CLUELESS.

There was no meeting. It was a set-up from the foster, rescue, and medical teams who were at work that day and even some people who came in on their days off with cake and birthday love for me. I WORK WITH THE BEST PEOPLE. But as I later told Charles, now I know that he and everyone else WILL LIE TO ME.

I forgot to take a photo of the cake before we all fell on it like starving lunatics, but it was SO GOOD.

Also a few little goodies from people who know me too well.

That night, Tom and I met Debby, Tim, Lynne, Rhonda, and Lindsey out for (at least in my case) a steak dinner at one of my favorite casual restaurants. After dinner, we split a couple of pieces of decadent chocolate cake (I was good and only took a small bite of my second cake of the day!), while I opened a few of my presents.

This is a super cool organizer Lindsey’s been giving her friends who like to color. It’s for those times you want to take your coloring book and colors out with you, but you don’t want to be burdened with your 5,023 pencils, pens, and markers (wait, maybe that’s just the number in my collection?). The ones in here now mysteriously showed up with my coloring supplies long after the flood, and I think they may have been some Lynne purged when she was moving. She’s very sneaky. (And no, Lynne, I have NOT put that one particular set of pencils back in that coloring book set in an OCD frenzy–unless it was Debby who forbade me to do that, but I think it was you).

Those cards for coloring came in a letter I received from Marika some time back. I LOVE MARIKA’S snail mail. Her letters are like getting creative little gifts full of thoughts and humor, tales of Mighty Monte and adventures in writing and St. Pete, and reminders of inside jokes that leave me cackling. They never make it home from the post office unread. As soon as I get to my car, I have to open and devour them.

Speaking of Lynne being sneaky, these dachshund sheets she gave me are a cool addition to Houndstooth Hall.

Unfortunately, they came with a price tucked among the folds.

Yep, the coasters are home. FORTUNATELY, Timothy cancelled them out with these he picked up while on a trip to Maine.

Thank you, Tim, and you’re welcome, world, for your daily cow.

This was one of the things I had wanted, and a little bird told Lynne, who delivered it.

Yes, we all know I’ve never been a big fan of Bush, but I admire his second act. He has devoted himself to learning a new creative passion and to honoring people whose Commander in Chief he was. I think often of those who serve. People who thrive on creating discord on the Internet love to “speak” for our service members and how they feel about the White House. But searching photos will show you many, many occasions under all administrations of our leaders surrounded by smiling members of the military. I can’t envision a world without the Internet anymore, but I can sure envision an Internet without comments.

On the matter of former presidents, one of my favorite things during Obama’s eight years in office was the Flickr White House account that featured Pete Souza’s photos. Thanks to Lindsey and Rhonda, I now have this book that I failed to get before it sold out before Christmas. So grateful for its success and its second printing, and for the trusting relationship between a president and his official photographer that provided unprecedented access to the executive branch and families.

Related to the executive branch families, I’m delighted to add these to my collection. I always follow the children of presidents with interest and hope they find fulfilling lives beyond the White House years. So many parents and teachers are using these books to encourage the aspirations of young girls.

In the Department of Shiny, here’s a brooch from Lynne.

And what do you see in my new crystal ball from Debby?

I’m hoping it’s more good things for all of you reading.

Thanks to all for many fantastic birthday wishes!


I believe you all remember that Margot was the Queen of I DO NOT WANT CHANGE DO NOT LIKE.

Margot on the chair that became known as The Throne.

Guinness was a lot more easygoing.

You can not imagine how much I miss these girls. I love all three of our dogs and their unique personalities, but I always feel a little wistful for the ones who shared so many wonderful years with us. I’m glad that Anime got to know both Margot and Guinness, and glad Delta shared some time with Guinness.

The chair and settee they are pictured on took a lot of beating during the flooding. Water on the legs, of course, and being piled against wet or damp furniture. They just seemed dark and sad to us.

We decided to have them cleaned, repadded, and reupholstered. Tom and I had a lot of fun one day looking at fabrics at the upholsterer. It was one of the first things we did for our house after the apartments were nearing completion, and it felt so optimistic and forward moving.

We just got them back this week and love the way they turned out. We are 100 percent sure Queen Margot would not have given her blessing, though.

If you need furniture reupholstered or repaired in Houston: Jack Johnson Upholstery

Crazy laughter in another room…

More Drowned Albums:

I feature these because I recently took a couple of late nights to watch the 2013 documentary History of the Eagles on Netflix. (My nephew Daniel is right; even if there weren’t other things for me to binge watch on Netflix, it’s worth it for the documentaries, and it’s enabled me to enjoy a lot of them I wouldn’t otherwise have been able to see.)

I remember in years past, I couldn’t figure out how I didn’t know the Eagles broke up after The Long Run tour. That’s when I saw them in Birmingham, Alabama (they were good, and Joe Walsh was a sensation), and it just felt like the Eagles were always there. The documentary gave me some insight. They didn’t really break up. They just stopped. But nobody ever stopped playing the music for the next 14 years, so when they reunited, it was as if they never left.

What I really appreciate is this is a documentary about band dynamics–not gossip, girls, groupies, gratuitous glamorization of drug excesses. It’s about the creative ebb and flow, the alliances, the arguments, the inner circle and the satellites, all the things it takes to create a successful band. Whether you love or hate the Eagles, they are for sure a band who, a few years from their 50th anniversary, still gets played, still makes people sing along, and can still pack a venue.

And oh, Don Felder, Randy Meisner, Bernie Leadon, Timothy B. Schmit, I loved you all, as you came and went. I went through phases of Eagles rejection, but I was always lured back, even if it was hearing a song from Don Henley or Glenn Frey in their solo years. In every version of the band, there were always songs and voices and instruments that provided the soundtrack to lives being lived. (In fact, at one point, Glenn Frey says–I’m paraphrasing badly, I’m sure–that the Eagles were who people played when they were doing things: taking a road trip, breaking up, falling in love, blowing a career.)

I have a ton of stories related to Eagles songs, some funny, some sad. But for sure their music provides me another of my “I know exactly where I was the first time I heard it” moments. A few of us youngsters were at one of those places we weren’t supposed to be (this almost always means we were high school girls hanging out with college boys–it was a college town! What do you expect??). We were sitting in one room, there was an album on the turntable in another room. And like magic, I was suddenly on my feet and drifting toward that other room as I asked, “What is this? WHO is this?” It was the first Eagles song I’d ever heard and I made them play it over and over, then I went and found the 45 at our local record shop as soon as I had some money to spend.

From that teenage girl to now, “Witchy Woman” still casts a spell on me, exactly as it should.

Transport Thursday!

As you know, I don’t usually post photos of our volunteers and fosters, just the rescued animals, on Thursdays. I believe I have featured Angelita (also known as Angel) on my blog before, but I was so excited to see her today that I really wanted to feature her again. Here she is with her fosters Whitney, Winky, and Wynne.

These pups had a few health issues to deal with, so it was wonderful to see them on their way today. However, the reason I’m sharing them and Angelita is because not only did I get the chance to thank her in person for something, but I get to let you know what a difference she made to our family after Harvey’s floods.

Before the rains came, Angelita had recently married and moved into her new home with her husband. She delayed putting her previous home up for sale and offered it for our use, free and clear, when she saw on Facebook how we’d been impacted by the flooding. Angelita is the reason Timothy and his dogs Pixie, Penny, and Pollock had a wonderful roof over their heads for a couple of months until they could return to a restored Fox Den. It gave us all some space, enabled Tim’s dogs to be with him–and if you have companion animals, you know how necessary they are to your morale in difficult times–and kept Tim and Jack apart (necessary for a peaceful home for us all!).

We have long known that Angelita really is an angel because of the level of care and commitment she gives to animals in need. We will always be grateful to her for being our personal angel, as well.