Deer Hunt in Culberson County

This group of men were showing off their trophy mule deer from a successful hunt on the ranch in Culberson County. The picture was taken  in 1946  by H. H. Wells of the San Angelo Standard Times.

pictured: “Goodbye” (the cook), Grady Madison, Willie Whitten, Jack Whitten, Sam Calhoun, Morris Whitten, and Dick Nasworth. There was probably one more deer which was used for camp meat~

This ranch up in the Delaware Mountains has been in the family for almost a hundred years and enjoyed by family and friends for all that time. It is one of the prettiest places in Texas and has a rim with a grand view of Guadeloupe Peak and another of the valley where you can see for a hundred miles. I like this picture, the men were all dressed nicely, back in that time if they went to town, they dressed up. They were truly Texas gentlemen. You notice the neat shoes and the high-heeled boots. (Good hats and good boots). I remember Uncle Will always wore a tie, even when he and Aunt Lummie were just dropping in for a visit. My nephew Earl Calhoun sent me this picture and I am thankful for this little bit of history to add to my blog.

Apricot Cake

Burst of flavor, big surprise

Years ago a good  friend introduced me to this delightful cake  She was a great cook and  had many old recipes. She said this recipe made “one to eat, one to share, and one to keep for later”.  Dan and I spent great times with the Mann’s, they were an older couple who liked to ride more than drive. We made lots of day trips to the Hill Country.  Mr. Bart and Dan both smoked a  pipe and were happy to sit on the benches outside while Mrs. Mann and I shopped in the antique stores. She liked water tumblers and I liked everything. If you try this recipe, you will be surprised. It is wonderful!

APRICOT LOAF CAKE

11 oz.package of dried apricots (cut up and soak in warm water for 30 minutes,drain)

2 cups sugar
4 T. Shortening
2 eggs
½ cup water
1 cup orange juice
4 cups  flour, sift before measuring
4 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
½ cup chopped pecans

Cream shortening and sugar, then beat in eggs. Mix dry ingredients together and add to the batter alternately with the water/orange juice, ending with flour. Blend in nuts and apricots.

Line bottoms of 3 loaf pans with wax paper, spray with Pam, and pour in cake batter. Bake 55 minutes at 350 degrees or until done. Cool slightly, remove wax paper and put cakes back in pans. Dribble a mixture of  3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup of orange juice over tops of warm cakes.

 

 

Downton Abby

this series has many actors, many stories, everything all tied in together, it is truly a masterpiece

A nice Christmas surprise this year was the DVD new PBS season of Downton Abby. This is season 7 and the finale of the long running series. My kids know how much I like British Masterpiece Classics and this one is the best of all. It has been a thrill from the first minute. I was going to just watch one episode a day so they would last for a while but that is hard, today I watched the same one twice to try to get control of myself. Not only is the setting beautiful, the Abby is a huge mansion with grand furnishings that I could only dream about, and here I am invited inside and to get to know the people who live and work there. The story is rich with twists, turns and surprises. The great thing about the English, they take time to let each character develop. They keep you spellbound, they are the best of all actors. Pride and Prejudice was my favorite but this one tops it. Another favorite was the Doc Martin series. it is also in its last season( Also the old Fawlty Towers). I know I can go back and enjoy it again and again. I have watched the first four series several times, it is like a favorite song, you never get tired of  it~

I have always loved the British Masterpiece Classics, they know how to tell a story, you never want them to end~

Tres Vaqueros Mexicanos

Three Mexican Cowboys

even in the most remote places of Mexico, we would see vaqueros riding their caballos, the ranches were huge, they had a long ride each day

The year was 1965 on a trip to Mexico. Tres vaqueros mexicanos. They were proud men. It is hard to believe anyone could carve out a living on land like this, not much growing here except scrub brush and cactus. A little further down into the interior of Mexico, the lush beauty begins. Back in the years when we traveled there, we found the people to be genuinely fine in every way. They were hard workers and they took care of their families. On Sundays, everyone brought their children to town and it was like a celebration,  there were parks everywhere, lots of fountains that were built to honor  someone. It only cost a few centavos to have a day of fun. There was the  music of Mariachi bands or maybe just one man with his homemade harp, ready to entertain. Even riding on a city bus, there was usually someone with a guitar singing his heart out. I am thankful that my family got to know Mexico back when it was such a wonderful country. It was like another world, and right in our own back door~

Texas Ranch Life

boots last a long time~when they wear out they get new soles and  and keep on going

A few pictures from the Lively ranch in Schleicher County. (thank you Frankie for the great pictures).

many horses have been replaced with four wheelers for ranch work, still people love their horses~

Almost anything that has to do with ‘ranch’ ends with ‘ing’. The list is long but here goes; lambing, kidding, calving, marking, drenching, dipping, tagging, shoeing, shearing, feeding, penning, improving, moving, counting, doctoring, hauling, worrying, banking, celebrating, fixing (water gaps, fences, roads, flat tires), control burning, checking the rain gage, sometimes this is the best of all~

feeding dogies~ lambs, calves or goats~ there are always some that need to be hand fed

goats are smart, this one found the feed sack~”Oh my stars,I’ve died and gone to heaven”.

Ranchers are most highly regarded for their hard work, dedication to improving and preserving the land, and holding onto it for generations. (I learned so many interesting things about ranching from my friend Pat who fell into the business when she married a rancher 59 years ago). Country life is the best life in Texas~

the end of another wonderful day, God Bless Our Country

Texas Longhorn

This longhorn was named after Bob Oglesby,  a Schleicher County rancher back in the 1960’s

Meet Bob, he is big, he is gentle, he is beautiful, he is a Texas Longhorn Steer. Their horns can extend up to seven feet. They were highly prized in the old days for their ability to survive on the open range with little care. Many people who keep them now days do so for their historical value and just the pride of ownership. Longhorns are important to Texans just as the bluebonnets are. They deocrate the pastures but especially the state parks and  the Hill Country. People are fascinated by them. Schools name their teams for them,  the University of Texas has always had one  (Bevo) as their mascot. They are a great subject for Texas artists. Longhorns are our connection to the Old American West. If you ever have the chance to stand beside one, you will be overwhelmed by it’s size, they are enormous. If you want to own one, you will need a good fence!

Goodbye to Kenya

This was the Nissan seven passenger van that came to pick us up. WHAT!  No Way!

When it was time to come home, a driver was recommended who owned a new Nissan Pathfinder with seating for seven. Since it would be an 8 hour trip on a terrible road to Nairobi and the airport, we wanted to be comfortable. Perfect, “come pick us up at 8:00 sharp”. When they said  our ride was there, I saw the ‘ride’ and thought maybe it was a taxi to take us to the real ride. This was just a little bitty blue car, nice and new but little bitty! Since Stephen came and picked two of us up from Elizabeth’s house first, I got the best seat. He loaded our two big bags and two carry-on’s. He had to lay the extra back seat down to make room but he got ours in, then we went to pick up Benton, Lisa and Abbie.

these three  were enjoying their breakfast at Karibuni, their last meal before we left.

 

They were waiting with their three large suitcases, three carry-on’s and various purses and sacks of snacks. I just sat in my chosen seat and let them worry about how all that stuff was going to fit.

At this point the car was full of luggage, we still had three large suitcases and one carry-on bag to go~plus the five of us and the driver~I did worry about those little tires~

It took a while, our bags came out and went onto the roof carrier, their bags went in and then out again and added to the roof carrier. Those on top were covered with a tarp and tied with lots of rope, and then the other bags were loaded into the back of the car and into that folded down 7th seat. But wait a minute, it wouldn’t fit! It was in and out, re-arranged and the hatch back still wouldn’t quite close so more attempts  that didn’t work. Off came the tarp on top after untying  all the knots in the rope, and some more luggage was piled up there. It was a tight fit and I worried that my little honey pot or zebra might get damaged. Finally everything got loaded and now for the people and the driver. We had over a thousand pounds of humans, I thought some more about those small sized tires on that car. They looked more like lawn mower tires~

we had a short break here to take pictures and look in the curio shop, even though this is on the equator, it was nice and cool because the elevation was 9,000 ft.

We made it to Nairobi after only three stops, one at the equator for a few pictures, a stop at the look-out at Rift Valley, and Stephen was nice to stop so I could get a pictures of a herd of zebras.

We saw several herds of them. Those tails never stop switching~they are fat little buggers~

It turned out to be a good day but it was hard leaving Elizabeth. Goodbye’s always hurt~ I was also leaving part of heart in this beautiful country.  

here is Elizabeth at Karibuni the night before we left. Wonderful time with her but it hurt to say goodbye. She will be coming home for a couple of months during the elections in Kenya so we can look forward to some nice times ahead.

God’s Richest Blessings on all of those beautiful people who touched our lives and made us realize what is most important, God Bless this unbelievable country~

Let the Games Begin

here are the kids dancing with their bustles. They were naturals when it came to rhythm and the beat of the drums. They chanted and that is all the music they needed.  Elizabeth and Lisa were sort of following along.

A few more pictures from my album, it is hard not to show every single one, they were all so special to me. These are the fun pictures.

here are Benton and Lisa, doing their own rendition of African dancing. They were not bad, they really entertained the real dancers with their moves.

One of the things I loved about the trip was getting to be a child again and play the games I played when I was a growing up.

this was a tag game, you chased your certain kid and if you tagged him, he had to come over to your side. I never ever once caught mine~

We didn’t have toys back then, no multi-color playground equipment, no fancy play houses with kitchens, easy-bake ovens, or have a pink Barbie convertible parked out front. We played the same old timey games these children at the orphanage were playing. They don’t have fancy toys either and I hope they never will. I can’t imagine any of them ever saying, ‘I’m bored’. Their only toy was a soccer ball and a jump rope.

they were good at jumping rope, sometimes two ropes at a time. The girls wore dresses and that could make it harder to do. They were good! Since this was our first day there, they were all dressed in their best for us.

two or three could jump at once, even the girl in the peach colored dress kicked her shoes off and jumped along with the rest of them.

There was a lot of dancing, singing, running races, chasing, and laughing, and at the same time, they were sweet to each other.  I can’t ever remember so much energy,  I think all of our group played harder than we had in a long time. 

here were the happy kids with Elizabeth on the play ground. They didn’t need a coach, they just played their games. Naomi was a referee though, she stood over in the shade to watch the little kids and be sure no one got hurt. The older girls were always looking out for the little ones too.

Children in Mali Saba

These kids were excited to see the picture I had just taken. When they saw their friends faces in the pictures, they were laughing at them, I doubt if they had ever seen themselves before.

There is a little village close to the Children’s Rescue Centre called Mali Saba, that has a few shops, churches, and houses. It is more like a big circle of open space with all the business around the outside. There were big trucks filled with corn that was being dried and cleaned.

There were huge tarps laid out on the ground and the truck was loaded with corn that was thrown out on the tarps to dry. They would keep scraping it up in large buckets and throw it in the air to wind it. Corn (maize) flour is what most of the diet consists of.

There were a lot of children there and here are some of their pictures.

This was one of the little boys, all of the children look older in the pictures than they really were. This one was probably three years old.

All I said was ‘wave’ and they all waved at me for this picture. I was always surprised at how many people there were everywhere we went and there were so many children. These had just come from Sunday School Class.

If we stopped to visit with them, they were shy at first because we were those strange looking people, but soon there would be a bunch of them crowding around. After we took one picture and they saw themselves on the camera screen, they all wanted to be in the pictures.

one of the children took this picture, not a great idea, then everyone wanted to try their hand at it~

This boy was wearing Crocks. There were a lot of Crocks everywhere we went, the company must have sent thousands of the shoes to them. They worked great~

here are four friends walking together.

Lisa, Elizabeth and Pastor Martin’s wife after church service at Eagle Vision Ministry           Jesus Praise Centre in Mailisaba-Kitale

Lisa in front of the church. Pastor Martin Manside held a wonderful and inspiring service. The music was exciting and loud.

Martin Manside’s church was located here so we spent some time in this place. 

Pictures from Kenya

this was the Bible verse for the day, there was a new one each morning and the children read it out loud to start their Bible lessons~

These are just some pictures for you to look at today. I hope you enjoy them.

two beautiful children listening to the lesson

they were singing ‘I Have Decided to Follow Jesus’

Benton, Paul, Rita, Martin, Lisa, Abbie, and Charles

just another beautiful child, saved from the streets and having a future~

this is Sharon, she is the baby

this pretty child is Charles’ little daughter, she comes to the orphanage every day with him to be with all the kids

 

these two were posing for me

this is a three year old, he was precious and was just warming up to everyone

Everyone loved Abbie

Lucy was the 13 year old and helped lead the games and dancing, she was almost always holding one of the little ones~

they all loved to have their pictures taken~

 

Roads in Kenya

The drivers use their horns, not to blare at someone but just a little beep beep to warn them. They are courteous and thoughtful of other drivers. This was a terrifying part of the trip, especially after dark.

This was a picture in the car going  from Nairobi to Kitale, the traffic was heavy, the road narrow and full of pot holes, no center stripe, and from my spot in the back seat, it looked like every car or truck was going to hit us. Here we were behind a big truck and there was a Mercedes truck coming toward us and a long line of bumper to bumper cars behind us. Add to this was the people walking beside the road, the motor scooters and bicycles, even donkey carts. It was hard to get used to the steering wheel on the right, every time the one in the front passengers’ seat turned around to talk to me, I kept thinking he was the driver and almost yelled at him to watch the road! The good thing is that drivers are polite to each other, they see someone getting squeezed in and they slow down or even stop. Even in all that traffic, the patrolmen stop cars every 40 miles or so to check that everyone is buckled in, they have bars with spikes they lay across  the two lanes so you have to stop. Sometimes they put them at an angle so you can just drive around them. At every tiny town, there are speed bumps, they mean to slow traffic to a crawl, you slow down or scrape bottom. There are no speed limits posted, everyone just goes around 40 miles an hour or slower. Where there isn’t a  huge pot hole, the road looks smooth but it is like a wash board. It  jars your teeth and pops your neck. This is on an 8 hour ride from Nairobi to Kitale, part of the way was after dark, it was a little scary, and I am not ever scared about anything. Elizabeth told me the Lord was with us and I didn’t need to worry~she was right, we made it fine~ 

Shopping in Kenya

As you can see, there are a few chickens in the cages. I saw several people carrying chickens in town, they just held their legs and they stayed calm.

There are shops all over Kitale, if you want  produce you will need to find a different store for each item. The egg place sells eggs, it is usually right beside several other egg places. The eggs we bought were always fresh and the shells were hard, no cracked eggs~then the meat market might be by the tattoo parlor, barber shop, or even beside the choo (public toilet).

The men’s toilet was  more simple than the lady’s. Two things that desperately  need fixing in Kenya are lack of sewer systems and the roads. I feel for them~

 

I

here is a typical ladies toilet. The blocks are  to stand on, not  sit, you figure it out. Only once did I need to use such a facility and that was a disaster.

Since there are few if any refrigerators, ice boxes,  or even ice, everything needs to be bought daily and in small quantities. There was a place that sold dry beans, seeds and maize. They had big sacks with the tops rolled open to scoop the grain out and weigh it. That day there was a roaming street chicken in one of the sacks, scratching and eating, she had found the meal of a lifetime. The store owner didn’t even shoo her away, he just kept sweeping the sidewalk. I shivered and kept walking.

This next little shop was on the street near Mili Mani, the man carried a variety of things  from eggs, to batteries, phone minutes, sugar cane, jars of nuts and soda pops. (I wondered about tobacco, I never saw anyone smoking the whole time we were there).

This man’s little shed was a going business. He always had customers. I noticed people adding minutes to their cell phone. Nearly every store in town sold phone minutes.

 

these girls were all fixed up. I saw a woman in the clothing market sitting on the floor behind a bench and she was not happy at all. I passed by later in the afternoon and she was still there, and still very upset. Then I noticed that she was having her hair braided in tiny dreadlocks and I am sure it was very painful.

Here is a beauty parlor, there were a lot of these. In the slums, most people have their head shaved, it is hard to tell if the children are boys or girls, except the girls wear dresses. The more affluent women have longer beautiful hair or wear a wig, whether or not they have hair they are all pretty, tall and slender, and have beautiful smiles. A surprise was the car dealerships, mostly Toyota and Nissan, their lots were filled with a big inventory of vehicles. There were a lot of motor bikes for sale. I liked them, they were whisper quite.  I thought the people were quiet too, they spoke softly and were friendly and pleasant. I am just about to the end of my adventure in Kenya , thank you for staying with me. I will have to find something else to write about now.