Saturday, June 28, 2014

A visit with an old friend

Menchie's yogurt …  it's what's for lunch.
There's a knock on the door this morning and there stands our friend who used to live down the street. Great neighbors Viki and John Hennessy moved to Seattle a number of years ago. Before they moved, we would always see John walking their two dogs in the afternoon.  During his walks he would meet and talk to so many people. He was always a hub of information! He comes to town about once a year to visit his family here. Ms. Viki stayed in Seattle this time. She is a crafter like me so I had to find out what she is doing before running out and leaving John to catch up with Mr. B.

It's a good think that we canceled the garage sale that was supposed to take place this morning. (It's raining in Houston again.) I think it has been rescheduled for mid-July when I'll be gone. Mr. B enjoys the interaction that occurs during garage sales, but to me they are akin to sticking sharp objects under my fingernails.

Today I'm creating a search for background photos. Too many choices to pick just one.

Friday, June 27, 2014

A fun afternoon

Mitzie and Dr. Mc loading up on
snacks before the movie.
Mitzie, Dr. Mc and I had lunch today and then went to see Chef. In the movie, the chef losses his job at an Los Angeles restaurant, but finds what's really important in his life (family, friends, passion for cooking). The movie was filled with delicious looking food and great music. I want to find the soundtrack before for the drive to Santa Fe next week.

I was amazed at the price for a matinee ticket, which was $9. What happened to $4 matinee prices? I got bottled water out of a vending machine for $4.75. Amazing! I guess the theater has to make its money from the concessions when only a dozen people are watching the movie.

Today I'm creating revisions to an ad and then going on a date to an art opening this evening with Mr. B. Fun day!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A creature of habit

I never know what I'll see in the Heights. Here's
a tub of body parts for sale outside a shop.
I'm noticing certain patterns developing in my daily routine as I try to chill more and stress less. For example, on Tuesdays I like to review the Southwest Airlines email I get to check the flight prices to ABQ. On Wednesdays I like to look at the upcoming Houston-area estate sales that are posted on On Thursdays I look at the same website to see if more photos and/or addresses are added, and then I make a list of the sales that I might attend of Friday. Then on Friday I like to completely ignore the list I have made the day before and sleep late. Granted, every once in a while there is an estate sale that has something I really want (usually old fabrics) so I'll make an effort to go to check out the item(s). That's never at 9 a.m. when the doors open to many estate sales. If it's meant that I should own whatever I've seen, it will still be at the there  when I get organized to leave the house in the afternoon.

Now that I'm going to be a grandma (but don't call me that) I've gotten into the habit of looking at Etsy and Zulily to see if there is anything new that the McZam baby will need. Thinking about babies reminds me that my lovely niece Patricia and her husband Tom will be welcoming baby girl #2 today. Their daughter Catherine just turned one about two months ago. I can't imagine having babies that are 14 months apart, but they are so happy!

Today I'm creating revisions to a letter and attending an advertising meeting this afternoon. Good thing my meeting is casual. It's going to rain (again) this afternoon so I plan on wearing my rain boots.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Schedule changes

How does this work?
I didn't post Saturday or Sunday because I wasn't feeling well. For many years I've suffered from bouts of pleurisy. I've learned that taking Aleve and resting in bed (sitting up) is just as effective as going to the doctor, getting a prescription, and then resting in bed (sitting up). On Saturday morning around 5 a.m. I woke up Mr. B up because I was having great chest pain. He knew my symptoms so he got dressed and went to the drugstore for Aleve. Within an hour I was resting.

While reading about pleurisy today, which I haven't done in several years, I saw no mention of stress as the cause of the inflammation that makes it difficult to breathe. What happened? I'm thinking I should have a visit with the doctor before I head of to the high desert where I don't trust the medical system. Hopefully I can get into the doctor's office on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday of this week to see if my chest pain is pleurisy or something more significant. Either way, it's probably time that I stopped treating the symptoms (chest pain and difficulty breathing) and started treating the cause.

Today I'm creating a press release. I was supposed to have a meeting about a new advertising campaign today, but it was postponed from Friday to today to tomorrow. Whenever. I'm ready.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Will work for compliments!

Colorful new iPhone case. Thanks, McZams!
I was beyond exhausted by the time I got home from the client event I coordinated last night. Being outside in the heat for four hours will do that to me! Yet it's so rewarding when I received a text message this morning from the "boss" that read: A big shout out to Julie for last night … a perfect event … and lots of hard work … I appreciate it. Oh, yeah!

When I got home last night, the back of the linen dress had on was soaking wet, as was the back of my hair. This morning my feet and legs weren't tired from standing, but my upper arms were crazy sore. For my birthday, Sweetness and Raff gave me a gift certificate for a spa mani/pedi. I plan on putting it to good use this weekend!

Today I'm creating the final text for my ad concepts, as well as a list of items I want to order from the Sundance catalog. If only everything I like in the catalog wasn't so expensive.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

A lazy, rainy birthday

While straightening up I found a box of bracelets I created,
several made from mainly vintage beads.
I couldn't sleep last night. It was a combination of being excited about the future and the McZam peanut along with thinking about my last calendar year (June 18, 2013-June 17, 2014). Like most years, last year was filled with highs and lows, but no regrets. All I hope is that along my journey I learned some new lessons and reaffirmed others that will help me in my coming years.

So far it has been a rainy birthday. How hard is it raining? Rose, who isn't normally bothered by rain and thunder, is under the couch (panting) with her toys and bone. 

Today I'm creating an afternoon of multi-tasking: house straightening, clothes washing, and concept development. I'm looking forward to tonight when Mr. B is treating me and the lovely McCarley sisters and their significant others to dinner at La Griglia. While awake last night I had time to decide what I'm going to eat tonight.  

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Doing lots today

So excited for these two!
I spent way more time today working on projects for my Tuesday client. Fortunately, most of it was accomplished while I was at home in a pair of shorts. I still have three more projects to complete before the end of the week, plus take care of everything for an event on Thursday night.

The big news in the house today was from Dr. Mc and #1 son-in-law Nick. They learned the sex of the baby. I was given permission to call a couple of important friends with the announcement, but am not going to disclose the sex on my blog. I did spend several hours on the computer looking at baby stuff and placing some orders. Learning the sex somehow made the peanut more real and exciting to me. I spent all afternoon smiling.

Today I'm creating orders for the Thursday evening event. I'm also concepting several ads, but haven't been overcome with brilliance yet. The ads are difficult to concept because I'm just not sure about the directive given to me. We'll see if I can make it work.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Birthday hugs to #1 son-in-law Nick!

Living in a 100-plus-year-old house is always challenging during the summer months. When Mr. B leaves for work in the mornings, he cranks up the A/C so that Rose and I sweat, even when we're under a ceiling fan. I need to buy room fans or spend more time out of the house!

Besides being hot, Rose is having other issues. Even if I walk outside for a few minutes without her she'll pee. Because of this we are once again crating her when we leave, but that will stop after today. She got so upset today that she cut her lip trying to chew through the metal. That must have made her more anxious and upset because then she pooped and peed in the craft … and laid in it. When I get room fans I'm also going to buy a baby gate so she can be left in the bathroom with the door open (if we close the door she scratches on the door and door frame).

Today I'm creating jewelry. I need to have items ready for Thursday to take to one of the places that sells my pieces. I'm thinking bright and sunny colors for summer. And I'm send hugs and best wishes to Nick for his birthday. A mom couldn't ask for a better son-in-law!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day Fun

We spent the afternoon by #1 son-in-law Nick's aunt Rosie's pool. There were about 20 of us and the weather was perfect. Everybody brought a side dish to go with hamburgers and hot dogs that Art (Nick's dad) grilled. The hamburgers looked so great, but huge. I ate a "dog" instead with three salad sides. The perfect topping was the brownie and vanilla ice for dessert. Yum!

There was lots of conversation about the "baby on board." It was split fairly down the middle with men thinking it will be a girl and women thinking it will be a boy. Two holdouts were Alex and Raff who are siding with the ladies that it will be a boy. There's still lots of conversation about what the six grandparents will be called. I haven't decided what I want to be called, but I figure I have at least a year to decide.

Today I'm creating a delicious green salad with orange slices, pecans and champagne dressing to take to the Father's Day celebration. This was a request from Mr. B. Of course I thought about my dad all day. He would have enjoyed spending time outdoors with our extended family and good food. I still miss him!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Art walk and shopping

A refreshing cocktail and fun company.
This is the life!
Mr. B and I started the weekend off with a bang! We went to the Houston Contemporary Craft Center for an exhibit of jewelry. There was tons of lovely work! I also like the revamp of Archer Gallery, the museum shop.

Next we were off to dinner at Lexington Grill for a double date with Alle and Marcus. We started off with a refreshing cosmo. Years ago we were at a wonderful restaurant outside of Bath, England. Guests were greeted at the door and lead into a bright and cheery "living room" where your cocktail order was taken. After a relaxing cocktail it was into the dining room for one of the best meals we've ever had. Americans should take a lesson from the Brits on how to unwind before dinner!

Today I'm creating an afternoon of looking at art with my handsome husbby before we do a little shopping for him.

Friday, June 13, 2014


I saw this wagon today while I was running around.
If I bought it, it would be cute yard art.
It has been more than a week since I blogged. It's not that I didn't have anything to write about, but I didn't have any new photos to post with my blogs.

I've been thinking about my summer vaca in Santa Fe. The past several years I've been going just before Independence Day and stayed through Labor Day. It's so wonderful to eat outside on July 4 in Santa Fe. The weather is cool. We can see the firecrackers from the casita. Plus there aren't mosquitos. Then, the week after the 4th is the wonderful Folk Art Festival. But this year I have to be in Houston on July 17 and Aug. 7 for events I'm coordinating. My best option would be to fly home for July 17 and Aug. 7, except flying between ABQ and HOU has gotten to be so expensive. Considering that I don't want to drive back and forth, flying still may be my best option.

Today I'm creating time to run some errands. There have been a couple of things I've been putting off (including blogging). I even found time to visit an estate sale. I love casual Friday!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

A grammar lesson

Huge bunch of poppies growing in Santa Fe. 
Well, shucks! I'm set to have lunch with Mitzie today and try a new restaurant (Funky Chicken). I'm up. I've "prettied up" as Bobby likes to say. I grab my purse to head out the door, and there's a message from Mitzie canceling lunch. Bummer. What now? I can't be in France but I can watch the French Open.

Oh, look how cute Halep is in her coordinated outfit of orange and purple. Love the bright and bold color combination. Maybe I'll eat my lunch while watching the tennis tournament instead of General Hospital. (I'm still very upset that the preemie died yesterday.)

Today I'm creating communications for a non-profit. And I'm seriously thinking about changing the name of my blog to "Today I'm _____." There are days when I just need to chill instead of creating anything, and the pressure becomes too much to create something every day. If I change the blog name can fill in the blank by using the suffix -ing to form verbal nouns from all sorts of verbs. Washing. Chilling. Communicating. Napping. Traveling. Cooking. Gardening. Contemplating. And the list goes on!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Publicity for non-profit event

More pretty flowers.
In college I started watching the daytime soap opera All My Children. Until it was taken off the air I watched Erica Kane marry 10 times, die and come back to life several times, kill people yet never go to prison, go to prison for tax evasion, go to rehab so she would be off the show during her real life pregnancies, become the CEO of incredibly successful businesses although she rarely worked, and so much more. I also watched One Life to Live from time to time until it went off the air about the same time as All My Children. After both of those "soaps" left the air I'm left with only General Hospital, which started out 50 years ago with most of the characters associated with the hospital (hence the title). Today only about a third of the characters work for the hospital. Another third are associated with "the mob"and the final third are law and order (police and attorneys) fighting the mob.

At the end of today's General Hospital a woman who was assumed dead reappeared (the character was in a coma for 20 years and recently woke up just as her husband found another love), another woman is pregnant (she doesn't know if the father is a mob boss or his son), and a pre-mature baby died. Please. No dying babies. My afternoon is ruined. The writers need to stick with the ridiculous and far fetched plots they do best.

Today I'm creating publicity for a non-profit event. I'm not sure how creative my announcements will be, considering that my afternoon is ruined <insert big sigh here>. Going back to General Hospital for a moment, the husband of the woman who was presumed dead and reappeared today is a doctor and the brother of an evil twin who was a vampire. That's a "soap" plot, not dying babies.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014


A colorful vine growing in the garden next to
the Texas Quilt Museum
I really appreciate all the people who commented on my post yesterday! So many encouraged me to stay strong and true to myself, which is great advice at any time and especially when I'm feeling beat up. I remembered what everyone had to say when I went to my first meeting today. I'm happy to report that all went well. In fact, I got a compliment for a job well done and an apology from someone for being non-supportive. I totally put on a happy face and left the meeting with a pep in my step!

When I went into my third meeting of the day I received another apology for being blamed for something that was out of my control. Believe me, no one is harder is me than me. So if I'm at fault I'll be the first one to admit it. During my third meeting I was also told what a valuable team member I am, which delighted me to no end!

Today I'm creating advertising and marketing themes, plus an e-blast and Facebook postings for a non-profit association. Dinner with good friends tonight will be the topping to a perfectly terrific day!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Time to grow a pair

The most unusual colored flower (purple) in
the Butterfly Garden in LaGrange. 
As a child, I was physically abused by my mother. For example, when I was five I wet the bed. The next morning, my mother beat me with a belt and then tied my hands and feet with a rope and made me lay in my urine-soaked bed all day. Can there be another term for this than abuse? There are many more examples I could write about, yet as I matured I forgave my mother, realizing that she did the best she could with the parenting skills she had. Even though I've forgiven her I can't forget what she did to me. As a result, I've always suffered from what is termed a "people pleasing personality." To this day, before I do anything I worry how other people will judge what I do or say.

The first paragraph is a prelude to what will happen tomorrow. I'm fairly sure I'm going to speak my mind (regardless of how I'll be judged) and then I'm going to resign from my final Board of Directors position. I literally have no support and am blamed for everything that goes wrong. It rains during the entirety of an event, yet publicity is blamed for the lack of attendance. Not once, but twice. I have 30+ years of experience in the field of marketing communications, yet the opinion of a non-degreed know-it-all is valued more than what I say? I keep quiet because I wonder how other people will judge what I do or say. This is crazy!

Today I'm creating a plan for tomorrow's discussion. A man much wiser than I am told me more than 20 years ago, "If it's not fun, don't do it." Walter's words are going to be foremost in my mind tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. as I stand up for myself.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Time for catch up

Rose after swimming in the pool.
Susan and I left Santa Fe, NM around noon on Friday and made it to Fredericksburg, TX by bedtime. As usual, Rose was the perfect traveller; she slept in the backseat most of the time.

On Saturday morning we toured Fredericksburg. I hadn't been there in about five years and was amazed at how Main Street has been redeveloped. Then it was on to LaGrange to the Texas Quilt Museum, which was a beautifully restored old building. There were three rooms of quilts, most of which featured butterflies. They were for a competition celebrating the competition of the butterfly garden next door. On the other side of the museum was a terrific little shop filled with knitting and quilting supplies. I could have spent hours in there. Next it was on to Katy to drop off Susan at her daughter's home. Rose went in the backyard and almost immediately jumped in the pool. Not once, but twice. Each time she jumped in she went completely under water and came up paddling. Susan jumped in after Rose twice. Rose came out of the pool just as happy as she could be, wagging her little nubby tail. Susan came out of the pool looking like she was a participant in a wet t-shirt contest.

Today I'm creating a day of rest. I literally slept most of the day. Thanks to Mr. B for keeping the house quiet.