Monthly Archives: September 2016

Sniff, Sniff – Wake Up! It’s National Coffee Day

"Once you wake up and smell the coffee, it's hard to go back to sleep."  - Fran Drescher Isn't that the truth?  Does anything wake you up better than the smell of coffee brewing in the morning?  Coffee smells cozy.  It smells inviting.  It smells homey.  It whispers from the aroma-cloud hovering over your pillow, "Wake, oh gorgeous thing.  The day has dawned."  (or something like that)  Mmmmm.  I love coffee. When we moved to Austin, our son became a coffee snob.   Granted, he was a part-time barista after school and on the

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The Violet Crown is Worth the Drive Downtown

Movies are just so much fun.  One of my friends started going to a Tuesday afternoon movie when her kids were in Mother's Day Out and has never stopped.  My parents love to watch movies at home, but occasionally, if there's a great action film on the big screen, they make plans and go.  Every year on the Friday after Thanksgiving, my sister-in-law's whole turkey-stuffed family has seen a movie together. Movies are great fun - and the theaters are a big part of the experience. Lots of people in Texas live in small towns and

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Is This Your Love Language?

"...it is more blessed to give than to receive." - Acts 20:35 I have to work so hard at gift giving.  My love language is words of affirmation, and I can typically cross over into three of the other four - quality time, physical touch and acts of service.  Gifts?  Not so much.  In fact, not so much at all.  And I really get put out about that. I love to receive a thoughtful gift, but when it's my turn to give, I way over-think it. When someone's birthday is coming up, I see it on the calendar and get a teeny panic attack.  I

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All “Fixe”-d Up – A Review of Austin’s Southern House

I don't know for sure why, but I was once a magazine hoarder. For years, I subscribed to the monthly manual no self-respecting lover of banana pudding could live without - Southern Living.  The recipes and articles were the topic of long cordless-telephone conversations with girlfriends, and all the best baby shower recipes were straight out of Southern Living.  Absolutely no coffee table sat in any living room without a small stack of them, perfectly fanned out, as if to be easily picked up and read while sitting in your

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Walk This Way

Have you ever stopped to ponder for a second just how much work goes into maintaining the beautiful outdoor spaces we enjoy in our communities? Somebody is picking up the trash, mowing the grass and maintaining the plants just about anywhere we could possibly go. Until a recent walk around one of Austin's most beautiful places, I had hardly given that a thought.   In fact, as I was mulling this over, our September issue of Austin Monthly arrived, and I discovered that the publisher and I are both on the same page, so to speak.

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Generals in a Different Kind of Army

Enlisting in our nation's great armed services is a choice made by the few and the proud. Those who join up are strong souls, possessing a mammoth desire to serve their country and an unwavering willingness to complete whatever mission is set before them - no matter the personal sacrifice. Anchors aweigh - to the shores of Tripoli - over hill over dale - and off into the wild blue yonder they go. They may not ever know what's next, but they're trained, prepared, expectant - and they have the support of their buddies. There's

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Let’s Go to Luckenbach, Texas

If people ask what's my best idea for a day trip, I'll tell them to go to Luckenbach, Texas.  This is the best one-day excursion we've done since moving to Austin. Since we went to Luckenbach, I've raved a little and mentioned it to lots of people.  I've mentioned it to people who've lived in Austin way longer than we have.  People who graduated from the University of Texas and never left.  And guess what? Many of them have never been to Luckenbach, Texas.  Not with Waylon.  Not with Willie.  Not with the boys. Take it from

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You Go, Rick Perry!

Last season, I vowed that I was done with Dancing with the Stars.  But tonight I can't remember why. The very kind man who married me would not want the world to know that he's watched the previous 22 seasons of DWTS with me, so don't tell him I told you.  Sometimes he gets into it even a little more than I do, and he critiques the dancers and the judges all over the place! Like he knows a diddly squat thing about dancing? We both made C's in our college western dance class! I think I could've pulled a B if I could have danced

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Royal Blue Grocery and a Tribute to My Favorite Grocery Man

My Granddaddy was a grocery man.  He wore a big smile and a white butcher's apron every day for years and years.  He was never rich, but he was always happy.  He worked six days a week, smoked a pipe, ate two Oreos every night, and watched As the World Turns on his lunch hour with my Grandmommy.  He was the same man in church on Sunday and at work on Thursday.  Oh, what a fine man he was. It's Grandparents Day, and I'm thinking about my Granddaddy. If my grocery man granddad were alive and could visit me in Austin today, Royal

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Live Music for Dummies – We Need a Manual

"Dummy," in my opinion, and my mom's, is an all-out curse word.   Utterly unspeakable.   Could even be punishable by swats (in the 70's) or grounding (in the 90's).  Nobody, but nobody, deserves to be called a dummy, especially a sibling.  And never, ever, ever in your long-legged life should you call yourself one. But if I were going to refer to myself that way, I might have done it recently when I bought tickets to a great concert on the wrong night. Among the many appeals of Austin is the music.  No other city can call itself

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