Friday, August 19, 2016

Somebody help me.....

 
.....I wanna know where this is!
 

 
I stole  borrowed this from the Junk Gypsy blog because I MUST drive this road.
My life abso-stinkin-lutely will NOT be complete until I have driven this road.
 
Anybody know?
I'm pretty sure it's in Texas, so all my Texas friends and family - I expect you to help me find out.

Oh yes, the adventures I'm going to have drivin' Charlotte.


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Meet Charlotte

This day started like any other.
 Except that it was raining.
It hardly ever rains here in Texas.
So other than the rain, it started like any other ordinary day.
When my feet hit the floor this mornin', I had absolutely no clue that a life-long dream was finally - finally - going to come true!
 
Two days earlier I took an 'off the beaten path' to run some errands and I spotted THIS beauty.
 
 
1972 Chevrolet pickup


I could not get her out of my head.
I decided this mornin' to go back and take another look.
 


I took a peek inside. Beautiful!
Strictly out of curiosity, I called the number on the 'for sale' sign and lo and behold the price was right!

 
 


Mr. T met me at the owners home and I fully expected to see a man our age.
Instead, the owner was a sweet 18 year old boy. He was incredibly polite and pleasant. While Mr. T went over what I hoped would be my new truck with a fine-tooth comb, this young man - Connor - gave me all the details I needed and answered all of my questions.
 
Then he handed us the keys and we took her for a spin.
If I wasn't already head over heels in love with her before, I sure enough was after that ride.
Next thing you know I became the proud new owner.
 
I was emotional and near tears because my dream of having my very own vintage truck had come to fruition. Oh - if I had a nickel for every time I pictured myself driving this very truck I'd be a rich woman. Y'all know that, though!! If you've followed me any length of time, then you KNOW how bad I've wanted a vintage truck.
 
Connor, on the other hand, was emotional because this was his very first vehicle. Not only that, but he and his dad had spent countless hours together fixing her up - quality father and son time.
 And tomorrow, he begins a new chapter in his life as a freshman at the University of Texas.
 
While I was signing the title and giving him the money, I reminisced about my old Suburban 'Dixie' and all the Dixie Road Trips I'd taken and the same adventures I have for his truck.


 How many of y'all remember the year Southern Living sent me a gift because I'd mapped out places they named as best of the south and I drove Dixie to all of them?
 
At that story, Connor's eyes lit up and he said, "You know, I did have a name for her - if you want to keep it. It's up to you. I called her Charlotte.'
 
So, in honor of the sweet boy who loved her and took such good care of her, we are going to carry on the tradition.
Charlotte she shall remain.
 
Below is the video of when he handed me her keys:
 
 
Now, Charlotte sits in my driveway.


 
I parked it to where I can look out at stare at her when I do the dishes.
 
I also love the name 'Charlotte' because when I was a little girl (and yes I'm going to show my age here), I made my mama sing the song 'Hush, Hush Sweet Charlotte' to me before bedtime.
(When I got older I actually watched the movie that song was a theme to. Yee-Gads!! Cuh-reepy!)
 
Anyway, Charlotte is not quite road-trip ready, so I'll be staying pretty close to Rowlett (Texas) with her for now.
And of course you know I will share all the updates with you.

Aaannnd....one last thing. See that profile picture up there?
The one of me in front of US Capital?
Well, I've been gone for 2 years now and I've tried to rack my brain to come up with another idea for a picture.
By golly, I think I've got an idea now - and it involves Charlotte!
 
Til Next Time....
Kathie

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

'Making Do With What I Got'

 
....and my sincerest apologies to my favorite Grammar Nazi for that title.
(Ahem, Deidre Foley Sexton. I swear I am going to have her edit my next book).
 
Anyway. Downstairs construction is complete (for another post) and while we are taking a hiatus from more construction (have another 2 bathrooms to pull apart), I thought this would be a perfect time to finally decorate my bedroom.
 
First order of business? Buy a new bed. Not just any bed, mind you, but a white, chippy paint, rustic bed. And it must be King Size.
 
As you know, I never buy anything new. I love a good flea market, thrift shop or antique store.
But not for my bed.
Nope.
 
So, off I go last week - Tuesday to be exact - and I hit every furniture store between Dallas and Fort Worth and every little nook and cranny in between.
 
Wouldn't you know? I finally found the one I wanted at Rooms to Go. I loved this bed. Exactly what I was looking for. I'm tellin' you - this was the bed of my dreams. Creamy white, brand new, but still looked old. I fell in love on the spot.
 
Along comes a very handsome fella,
 "Hey there! I'm Reggie. Just so you know, our Memorial Day sale is still goin' on".
 
When he told me the price I almost jumped up and down with glee.
But.....when it came time to get my money out, I froze.
 Folks, we got down to signing on the dotted line.
We were even scheduling the delivery date.
 
"Oh Reggie. I am sooo sorry. But I just can not do this."
 
I felt AWFUL, because as a realtor I know what it's like to work on a commission-only basis. I knew what this sale meant to him, but I just could not part with that money.
Without an explanation - but an humble apology - I ran out of that store like a runaway bride realizing she was making the worst mistake of her life. (Okay, maybe a tad bit dramatic)
 
 Who needs a king size bed anyway??? We are empty nesters. We don't have little ones crawling in bed with us anymore! And we darn sure shouldn't be sleeping soooo far apart from each other. Heck, no! We are back in the honeymoon stage and should be snuggling tight (sorry, too much info there). Nope - that Queen size bed still has a lot of life in her. I know I can make do with what I have and be just fine!
 
So, all the way home my creative juices were flowing and by the time
I hit the President George Bush Turnpike I already have the vision of my new bedroom in my head.
 
 

 

My first stop was Wal-Mart (I hate that place) and bought a basic white comforter set. Then I dug around for some pictures and other odds and ends around the house. It's amazing what you'll find tucked away in the dark corner of your closet.
 
My niece Mel made the "All of Me Loves All of You" picture.
(Mine and Mr. T's song).
 
Voila!
 
 
I really don't think this room turned out too bad at all.
 

 
Here is the finished product.
Well, wait...I need a black/white toile duvet or throw for the bottom half of the bed, don't I?
Who am I kidding? I am NEVER finished with a room.
 
See that basket under the white lamp? That holds 30 years worth of my Grandma Drexie's diaries.
And the chest at the end of the bed? Her college grade card, her Victorian baby shoes, my great, great grandparents marriage certificate and so many other family treasures.
 
And the money I saved on the bed? Well, I hope to get started on those upstairs bathroom renovations before fall.
 
As they say, 'no rest for the wicked'. Or is that 'weary'?
'No rest for the weary'?
Well, either one works for/describes me.
 
Oh - and by the way, I really wanna give a shout-out to Reggie Williams at Rooms to Go in
The Colony, Texas. Nicest guy ever - please see him if you need new furniture. But don't tell him Kathie sent you - he's probably still not very happy with me.
 
Til next time,
 
Kathie

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Rowlett, On Purpose

Why Rowlett?
If I had a dime for every time I've heard that question the past 17 months I'd be rich.
I like to say I moved to Rowlett 'on purpose'.
 
You see, when I knew that I was leaving D.C. once and for all and moving to Texas, I knew I wanted to start my new life in Rowlett, a small city (population 57,000), 20 miles away from downtown Dallas.
 
Yes, I'd read in Forbes magazine where it was named the #1 best small city in the nation to live. I was also aware that the same year it was also voted the #1 most boring city in Texas, which after 13 years of the most hideous traffic in the nation and the fast-paced existence of the nations capitol, boring sounded so appealing.
 
But neither one of these was why my heart longed for Rowlett.
 
No, my crush on Rowlett started way before the magazine articles touted it's 'small-town' vibe and it's affordability.
 It probably started because Mr. T's cousin (and childhood best friend) Sherrye lived here. I'd met her at our wedding years ago and just fell in love with her and started a fast friendship that has spanned the decades. Mr. T promised me that if I'd stick with him as he moved me around the world that we would settle down and live out our days in Texas - within spittin' distance of Sherrye if that's what I wanted.
 
Enter Facebook. Sherrye and another cousin Melanie were among my first friends. Their facebook posts of happenings and daily pictures of the town opened my eyes even more to the dream life that awaited me here.
 
If THAT wasn't enough, much to my delight one of my other social media friends - from DC, no less - had gone to school with the current Rowlett Mayor, Todd Gottel.
 
I messaged him and introduced myself, explained my interest in Rowlett and asked if we could be 'friends'. His posts and updates allowed me the opportunity to really keep up close and personal with my 'dream community'.
 
Five years later, when my dream of moving back to Texas became a reality I knew it had to be Rowlett. But, just to make sure the 'love affair' was real , and to my humor my husband who really wanted me to be absolutely, positively sure, I did look in other surrounding areas - Dallas, Keller, Trophy Club, the Fort Worth area and other 'hot spots', but no.
The heart wants what the heart wants.
 
Now, if Rowlett, Texas sounds familiar to you, it should. We've made the national news every day this week.
 
Our community was hit hard by a tornado the day after Christmas.
The Hillbilly Hacienda escaped unscathed. Barely.
 
Within walking distance of my house, whole communities have been wiped out. It's devastating. My emotions run the gamut. Relief. Depression. Grateful. Guilt. I feel these on a daily basis and generally all at once.
 
The mayor - Todd Gottel -is no longer just someone on facebook - but an actual real-life friend, as well as Mayor Pro-Tem Michael Gallops.
I was on the library task force with City Council Robbert van Bloemendaal and City Manager Brian Funderburk. Council Member Carl Pankratz I met through the theater community.
These men care deeply about the people of Rowlett.
 
I would bet my firstborn and everything else I own that as the Mayor  was hunkered down under the stairs (we don't have basements here in Texas), that his first concern was not about his own safety, but that of the people he serves.
 
I have never, ever lived in a place where the mayor, vice-mayor, and council members cared so much about the people of their community.
 
I've never experienced a community that cares so much about
each other.
 
This week, as if I didn't already know - proved once and for all - that this is home.
 
I have found the place I hate to leave and can never wait to get back to.
Rowlett, Texas. My home - on purpose.
 


Thursday, December 3, 2015