Wednesday, October 7, 2015

A New Backporch For The Snooty Household.... After 35 Years

I was the first one to admit that the wrought iron patio furniture we'd inherited was many years past its beauty and functionality. For years I'd watched longingly as friends updated their outdoor furniture, dreaming of the day I'd be able to replace our own. Over the years I had spray painted the old furniture countless times but by the next year it would all look shabby again. Also, the squirrels had completely eaten my outside linens so much that they were in shreds.

I did everything I could to make it look less shabby, all to no avail. I'd buy new pillows, new tablecloths, more plants, new chair cushions, outdoor candles, you name it. Nothing really helped hide the fact it was all slowly falling apart, wired together in many places. I didn't really want any one to see it. I didn't even want to look at it. The picture right below was taken in 2009 when things still looked pretty good.

Finally I found a deal that we just couldn't pass up. I was browsing at Sam's Club online and found a deal for a square dining table w/ 4 chairs along with a living area set that included a sofa, 2 matching chairs, 2 side tables, and a cocktail/coffee table. The side tables can be slipped under the coffee table for storage and all sitting pieces had nice, thick pads that tie on. All this for a mere $1099.00 and yes, FREE DELIVERY. It also came with lumbar pillows, which I did not like at all so I gave them to a friend who did. Honestly, I couldn't find a better deal anywhere. Below is the picture I took after all the new goodies arrived and were assembled by Mr. Snooty. I already had the chaise lounge which matches nicely with the entire set of outdoor furniture.

Next, I went to and searched for the pillows I knew I wanted. Found them. I got 4 square Sunbrella pillows, plus 4 matching seat cushions I wanted to use as backs for the dining chairs. They were a bit uncomfortable without something soft to lean back on, so these were just the ticket. I spent a total of $82.00 (including shipping). They are really well made and just what I had been looking for. This is a picture of everything BEFORE adding the pillows.

Before it all arrived I also went to and ordered the outdoor rug I'd had in mind. It's reversible and you clean it by hosing it off with water. Sweet. $129.00 on sale with FREE SHIPPING.

Don't the pillows add just the right touch? Mr. Snoots had to, of course, put almost all of the pieces together but we are thrilled with how our new patio looks. I can foresee spending many long hours out there with friends and family. The cushions are soooo comfy! As soon as the 90 degree heat goes away it will get us outside more often, which is a good thing, right? And, no sore feet or aching backs from going everywhere to look.

Next, I'm off to shop online for outdoor furniture covers that will be delivered FREE...We have brutal winters here and this year is predicted to be the worst yet. Really? It can get worse? Heaven help us...

Friday, September 25, 2015

Meet Our Two New Family Members....Trouble and Pepper

Our 20 year old black & white tuxedo cat was diagnosed with kidney failure after the first of the year so skiing in New Mexico was the only trip we took until August. After all the good years she gave us we felt it was important to stay close to her until she got close to the end. No, we didn't spend thousands of dollars to put her on cat dialysis. I don't believe in that for an elderly cat. There is no cure for elderly cat kidney failure so we were not going that direction no matter what. The vet did give us some powders to mix in her food which helped for a while. Yet, it was quite painful to watch her go steadily downhill over 3 months time. Eventually, she wouldn't eat or drink and stayed in the same spot 24/7. R.I.P. Miss Trouble. We loved you well and we'll meet up with you someday.

At first, we weren't going to get another pet. Really. Then I found myself thinking I'd see her in all the old familiar places, heard her meow. You get the picture. I knew then that I needed a new baby to love on. My life just wasn't as good without a furry baby. So the search began.

After looking at all of the animal rescues and PetSmart (also rescues) I became exasperated that I couldn't find *the one* that I was looking for. There has to be an immediate bond for me and the kitten, which I wasn't finding. A friend told me to check Craig's List but every time I'd call they had already found forever homes.

Finally, in late June, I found one that needed a new home. A lady had been driving down the street, saw a bag making wild moves, stopped her car and discovered that it was a little kitten. I almost died over the story so I felt that I was lucky to fetch her & bring her home. The lady was afraid to take her to the pound for fear of her getting put to sleep. I immediately bought a cat carrier, some kitty food, and new toys on my way to pick her up. Meet Trouble (#3) when we first brought her home....
Yes, we ended up calling her the same name as our previous cat because we're getting old & couldn't remember any of the names we came up with. Our daughter thinks we're idiots.

And this is what Trouble #3 looks like at 4 months old....

The more comfortable she became with us, the more I became her *toy* and major teething source. My hands, arms, and feet were totally scratched and bitten. I was miserable and she had decided Mr. Snoots was her favorite. Tired of the condition of my hands, I went on a new quest to find her a little friend. She just looks like a little stinker trouble, doesn't she?

Oddly enough, it was Craig's List once again. I found the most adorable Manx *Rumpy*, which is a Manx with absolutely no tail. A total opposite of the Black Beast - Trouble, little Pepper was sweet and at first so very shy. She spent the first 5 days under my bed so I put out food , water and a litter box for her, and she was obviously eating, drinking, and using the box. So, I gave her time to adjust at her own level of comfort. Less than a week later I had to ban the two new best friends from my bedroom just so we could get some sleep. Their romping up & down the halls was keeping us awake. This was Pepper when she first came to us....

This is my little cupcake Pepper now. She's quite the social butterfly and the perfect addition to our family. She is a total angel and Trouble finally quit biting and scratching me....

I guess she really just needed a little buddy. They romp and play together constantly and you don't ever really see them apart. At first I felt sorry for Pepper but quickly noticed she could hold her own with The Black Beast. They have so much fun together as well as provide us with countless hours of sheer entertainment. It's actually been difficult to get decent pictures of them because they are always tearing through the house at warp speed.

I think we'll keep these two characters. Only love can break a heart and only love can mend it again....

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Ruidoso, New Mexico In the Summer... Absolutely Divine

We've always gone to Ruidoso, New Mexico in the winter to ski, so it was a truly wonderful experience staying at the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino during August. We've been having triple digit heat here in Texas, so 80 degree weather was like Heaven.

Ruidoso has had a blessed summer of much needed rain which has made everything look like something out of a brochure. The above picture was taken from our balcony, of the tenth hole. The rest of the 18 hole championship golf course is even more beautiful than this picture. Every single day you could see the course crew out grooming from sun-up to sundown. It was breathtaking. It was quite challenging playing with at least half the holes being uphill and we were told no carts on the course until 10:00AM... We teed off at 9:00 AM. So, for an hour we played aerobic golf since it was mostly uphill. Needless to say, we were thankful when 10:00 rolled around. Luckily, we had a fast five-some playing ahead of us and a slow five-some playing behind us. It was like we had the course to ourselves.

This was taken at twilight.

This was the 9th hole looking down at the Inn of the Mountain Gods.

One day we had lunch at the golf course grill which was nothing special, but it was good and the drinks had ice so we were happy. We also had drinks at the Buffalo Bill Bar and enjoyed the lovely views from the patio as we enjoyed them.

We were also able to do the Apache Eagle Zip Rider which was a blast! The zip line is accessed by ATV and you can go two at a time. Thankfully, hubby stayed at the bottom to record my ride. The man going at the same time as me was heavier so he went across much faster than I. Still, it was a total rush of adrenaline and such a frightening joy, if that makes any sense. You go all the way across the lake in less than 3 minutes. Video will not show here because it's too big by 34 MB. Sigh. So, here's a picture of where you launch from. I never have received my one and only picture I paid for. 

The ATV ride up to the launch was another adventure unto itself, I kid you not. There is another Zip up at the Ski Apache Ski Area called the Apache Zip Tour that is one of the 10 longest in the U.S.A. Unfortunately, it rained the day we were scheduled to go, so we cancelled. Might be more fun in the winter anyway.

Apache Indian Teepee across the lake.

All of their rooms have been updated this year and the room was lovely, the restaurants were better than ever and the room service is still outstanding. We never even saw the need to leave the hotel. We didn't gamble but we did walk through the casino to have lunch at the casino restaurant one day and it seemed pretty dead.

I think I'm back to blogging since it is the best way to recall what I've been up to and when I did it. Yes, I'm old and it's a huge help....

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Ruidoso, New Mexico... A Deceptive Mystery of Sorts

We just returned from several days of skiing at our closest ski area, Ski Apache, owned and operated
by the oh-so-often deceptive Apache Indian Tribe. Let me explain by number.

1. After 25 years the website for Inn of the Mountain Gods STILL DOESN'T WORK properly. After making online reservations, one must still contact reservations at the hotel to secure a room. They add new pictures, new menu items, remodel the entire hotel, adding more rooms, and still the website can't seem to deliver even the smallest improvement, or just retain the info for that matter.

2. The hotel still boasts fine dining at their upper end restaurant "Wendell's". Although we had an amazing Caesar Salad made by our waiter at the table, dinner still took more than two hours to deliver. There were only 9 tables of people (2 tables of which were 4) and 3 waiters. Unacceptable. I could have handled at least half the tables even though I haven't done so in more than 40 years. (Shut. Up.)

3. The web cam at the ski area website boasted great and plentiful snow. The reality was that there wasn't much snow and what there was, was *made* snow. It was slush in the sun and like black ice in the shade. I have certainly skied better snow, even in Ruidoso. It's not a new concept. Had I known how truly dangerous the skiing was, I'd have gone shopping in town instead of wasting a whopping $115.00 for less than 30 minutes of skiing. Enough said there.

4. When I first checked the Ski Apache web cam (on the Ski Apache website), the gondola was running. When I arrived at the ski area 45 minutes later, no gondolas were running and there was no wind nor extreme conditions preventing it from operating it during normal hours. Hmm. Color me confused. So, if I wanted to get to the top of the mountain I had to ride 3 exposed (to the elements) lifts. Did. Not. Happen. The huge parking lot was nearly empty upon my arrival, which shocked me, although I'm not sure why. I've been there many times before when the ski area was void of skiers.

5. Following our last excursion to stay at the IOMG, I refused to even enter the casino during this trip. The Apache Indians may shun us if we wear anything made of snake (or reptile), but I in turn, refuse to lose my money to their obviously shoddy gaming establishment. They do not deserve any of my money, thank you very much. If I'm going to gamble away my money it will be to people (like the best hotels in Las Vegas) who treat me well and kiss my fine derriere while I'm losing my hard earned money. IOMG is not that place. Furthermore, they allow smoking at the tables but do not allow drinking at the tables. What kind of crazy ridiculousness is that? Get me drunk for free and I'm all about losing money. What part of this seems confusing? Oh. Dear. It must be that devil firewater they all seem to find so addicting. Since I'm 1/16th Cherokee I do not understand this craziness. I can handle it. Why can't they? C'mon. Really?

6. Inn of the Mountain Gods also offers NO PAY PER VIEW movies in the rooms nor spa services. In my opinion this is sheer idiocy. We would have watched multiple movies (at whatever price), and I would have totally accessed the spa and all its services, and they would have made money. (Can we spell revenue lost through laziness?) I simply do not understand this absurd oversight. Stupid non-marketing, really. Even in Las Vegas I can get BOTH AMENITIES. Uh-Huh.

7. Our last night there we ordered room service filet mignons and all the sides for dinner (only one side was offered for your effort of showing up in the dining room) and it was more prompt and much more delicious than our first night in the restaurant. Seriously? What's that all about?

8. I did ski one day but the conditions were horrendous and I didn't ski very well. Being a fair weather skier I'm convinced that had the conditions been better I'd have been Hell On Wheels Skis. The sun was out and it was seasonably warm, but the snow itself sucked. It was scary and it was dangerous and I didn't like it.

9. I so wanted to do the Apache Zip Tour until I discovered that it can reach speeds up to 70 MPH. during your *tour*. WHAT? Umm... No. Not I. I'm brave if I reach that speed with my car. I'm no longer a speed freak in any way, shape, or form. Besides, the PRACTICE ZIP LINE is located at the bottom of the mountain, something like 30 to 45 minutes away. Honestly, I just feel that they don't have all the kinks worked out yet (yes - excuses, excuses), so I'll wait until I'm sure they are good to go.

10. Yes, I've become a wimp. I can live with that. Also, I can't stand the Apache Indians and their mistreatment of their clients bread and butter, the tourists. I'm now looking for whiter slopes with friendlier folks, still within reasonable driving time... I'm a tree. I can bend. I can also pray.

In addition to all I've stated above, Ruidoso and the surrounding area have been devastated every year for the past five years (maybe it's been 10 years). Fire. Flooding. Drought. Fire. Drought. Very, very sad indeed. Lost businesses, lost homes, lost valuable employees, lost friends, lost forest, lost wildlife, lost ski area terrain. The list goes on, as must I. Ski Apache will, I'm sure, continue to to let what they've built deteriorate as well as discourage future tourists by continuing their deceptive ways. Not much has changed in the last five years, nor the last 30 years. The Apaches still run the only game in town and I'm Cherokee. Perhaps that is my problem and I am at the end game with Ski Apache, as well as being done with the entire tribe....

Now, it's time to get back to golfing... Just as soon as the weather warms up.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Must Be Time For Another Road Trip... 2015 Edition

Lately I find that I just don't have the patience for much of anything aside from keeping my nose to the grind, as it were. I don't know if anyone else goes through phases like this, but I certainly do. I feel restless and the things I normally derive joy from doing on a day to day basis, are either boring me to the verge of tears or causing me a great deal of frustration. It's the same feeling that you would educe from taking one step forward and three steps back in a walking race. Uh-Huh.

I have no patience with long stoplights or people who seem to be asleep for the first few seconds after the light changes to green, because they are talking on their freaking cell phones. I have no patience with people who ring my doorbell unannounced. I have no patience for neighbor's dogs who bark for hours on end, nor do I have the patience to suffer through visits from Jehovah's Witnesses or anyone selling anything. The people who block grocery store aisles are now on my hit list. I'm beginning to scare even myself. And today, a neighbor child is blowing an industrial size whistle, seemingly non-stop and I'm envisioning ripping it from her mouth and tossing it to Kingdom Come. You know. Right after I ask the parents if they are deaf or something (like stupid).

I used to refer to this strange emotional phenomenon as PMS and later, I thus blamed menopause. I no longer have either *condition* among my repertoire of excuses for foul moods, so I'm fairly perplexed as to what I can blame this on. Am I really just a total bitch after all is said and done? Possibly, but hopefully not that uncomplicated. Perhaps it's just *crotchety old age syndrome*. Whatever. I think I'll go with Early Spring Fever.

Mr. Snoots, the poor dear, doesn't really understand but in an effort to prove his allegiance he feigns sympathy and understanding. I cannot say that I blame him for that ploy. Were I in his predicament I'd probably resort to the use of a sledge hammer, so I must praise him for his acumen.

Oh patience, where art thou?

Sensing this, Mr. Snoots, in his infinite wisdom, has suggested a road trip. I'm always game for a road trip! So, we're headed to our favorite little ski town. Ruidoso, New Mexico. We'll only be gone for 4 days but usually that's all I need to set me right with the world again. As I've said before, all work and no play makes Snooty a very cranky entity indeed. Very. Cranky.

Mr. Snooty plans to stay at the hotel and take care of business on the computer, which will keep him busy. Then, we can go to dinner in the evenings. Normally, when I go skiing alone, I have room service, watch a movie and go to sleep. So, this should be tons more fun! However, when the hotel removed my person from the casino for taking pictures, they completely squashed my pension for gambling. I wouldn't give them my money even if they begged me and rolled out the red carpet.

Of course, Mr. Snoots doesn't ski anymore but I don't care. I'm just thrilled to not be going alone. I went alone for so many years once the kids were gone and after a while, it just wasn't fun anymore. We humans need contact with other humans and he's my #1 choice, so it will be nice to have him along.

Did I mention that I'm now considered a senior and can ski for a discount price? When I turn 70, I can ski for free! That's my goal. So, I'll finally be getting a *deal* after skiing HERE all these years.

Anyway, I'm out of here as soon as I can gather all my ski things but that might take a while. I promise to try take lots of pictures but I'm more forgetful these days. Two full half days of skiing is probably more than I can handle in my out-of-shape condition. It might well kill me, but I doubt it. Only the good die young.... Most likely I'll be as sore as a two bit floosie on payday. Besides, I ski like an old lady now. You know. Because I'm an old lady now. I can only dream about how I used to ski but, I'm perfectly good with that. As always, I'll take my bottle of champagne, a jar of Icelandic caviar, cream cheese, chopped red onion and toast points to have for my afternoon snack. It became a ritual for me about 20 years ago and I'm not one to break tradition. Well, not this one anyway.

See you soon!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Is Almost Here... Are You Ready?

For me, the holiday season has already been full of parties and good cheer, decorating, and making Christmas gifts for friends and family. We threw away our old fake tree at the end of the last Christmas season because I was tired of trying to make all the lights work at once. Not that much to ask for, is it? Silly me. So, we ordered a new tree from an online outfit that is well known. Ten days later the tree arrived with the box seemingly intact and we I trusted that the tree was fine as well. I will admit that Mr. Snooty asked me if I'd checked the lights and I simply pooh-poohed him. The tree was brand new and retail price.

Fast forward a few weeks and I finally had Mr. Snooty bring in the tree for assembly time. Once the three pieces were out of the box and on the floor I realized that the last time we'd bought a tree was the DISPLAY tree at Lowe's, which was already assembled AND fluffed. Uh-Oh. Okay, so fine, it will be some work but it'll be fine.

Many hours and scratches to my arms & hands later, it seemed I'd barely made a dent. Only then did I deem it necessary to watch the instructional video. Yup. That's right. Another *faux pas* by Moi. So, I plodded on along and did the best I could, promising myself to do it right next year. (Uh-Huh. Like next year I'll be younger.) But, I'm actually pleased with the outcome.

Then came time to turn on the lights. All lights were working except one small section of the middle part. Swell.

I ended up taking it apart and fluffing from the bottom section up. It really does make sense to watch the tree tutorial. Who knew? After that process, this was my final product. Not bad, really.

I had to make a decision to either get the tree decorated or send it back while waiting another 10 days to receive a new tree. I opted to keep and decorate the tree so we could enjoy it for the holidays, and I added an additional strand of 100 lights to that section. The cycle of adding lights begins again. I must be crazy or old. Oh wait. I'm old.

Anyway, I've been trying to gather the energy to put up the outside garland/lights. So far, I have the front porch done, so enjoy. This might be all you get.

Last picture is of what little I've done on the outside. Maybe I'll put up the dining room and living room lighted garlands outside and maybe I won't, but it will still be festive. And at least I finished the front porch and the tree, if not much else.

Merry Christmas and Cheers to All! Here's our Christmas picture from 2013. Might as well add it, right?

Friday, July 11, 2014

So, I Guess I'm Not Done With Golf Just Yet...

Well, color me happy! I survived 36 holes of golf within two days and didn't do too badly for barely having even played last year at all. Predictably, I won the most dubious award called Ladies Shortest Tee Shot. Yup. I saved my big shot partner from receiving the male version of the same award, with my less than perfect tee shot.

Always a fun tournament, they seem to have weeded out all of the drama couples, making for a really enjoyable weekend. Everyone involved actually cares more about having fun than winning, which makes for very little drama, if any. We play a *SHAMBLE* format meaning each pair takes the best drive and you play your own ball to the hole. We also don't do sandtraps.

I also made my first eagle, with the expertise of my fine Scottish partner (actually he's a golf pro in Hawaii who was visiting) on the second day. On a 4 par he hit his tee shot 4 inches from the hole. I sank that sucker with fervor! I'm thinking I still love golf... for the moment. Best of all, I think that perhaps I'm not done yet.

There is a point at which you finally *get it* with golf... at least for some people. I do believe I think I'm there. Or not. It might be a sucker punch waiting in disguise, to knock me off of my high horse again. However, for now, I'm feeling quite full of myself and my golf game.

Since we returned home we've played once at the club and I shot a miraculous 100, which leaves me wondering... Who am I? I can hardly wait for Sunday, when we play again.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Perhaps My Last Golf Tournament... So I'm Going To Have Fun!

This coming weekend we're participating in the same golf tournament we've played in for the last five years (except last year when I was just out of the hospital from having bacterial meningitis). It's always held at a golf course close to Abilene, so it's only a 2 hour drive.

I'm still trying to get myself back to normal physically, so this tournament is going to be a major challenge for me. I've only played a handful of times in the last year but that was due more to bad weather than my physical condition, although I'm still incredibly weak. We went out to the club to hit balls last week and I was sore for the following 4 days. Gah.

I'm tired of being weak and exhausted all the time but because of my blasted inflamed ankle, I am extremely limited as to what and how much I can do physically. So, I've been doing what exercises I can from the comfort of my desk chair. Mostly upper body exercises and leg lifts, which will never get me back to where I was once upon a time, but will hopefully get me to where I can eventually up my routine.

At first, we weren't even going to play in the tournament this year because we felt that it wouldn't be fair to whoever my partner might be. However, after speaking with the organizers of the tourney, we were encouraged to still come play. My high handicap appears quite enticing to the guys who are big hitters and my putting continues to be something short of miraculous. Since the tournament is a *shamble* this works quite well for me since I just don't have the strength to hit amazing tee shots. Well, I've never hit amazing tee shots, to tell the truth, but because of my handicap no one seems to hold it against me. That handicap actually makes me the popular girl for tournaments.

So, I am going into this tourney with the belief that I can still play golf because I'm pretty good at believing my own lies at times. Who knows? Perhaps I'll pull off another golf miracle and win something. It has happened before. Still, I'd appreciate as many good thoughts as people are willing to send my way. I think I'm gonna need it....

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Happy Father's Day?

My husband never really wants anything for birthdays or Father's Day. When he does want something he just goes out and buys it, which makes it difficult to buy him anything. Ever.

So, last year I decided I would wash the exterior and detail the inside of his car. You know, because he washes his car maybe five times per year... and never gets it detailed. Great idea, right? Obviously, it's something very important to him (or not).

The day before Father's Day I told him I needed his Lexus to go to a luncheon and that he needed to drive our old Suburban for the day. He couldn't take my Sequoia because (I told him) it was almost out of gas. Okay, white lies in place, he left for the office and I got started on my project.

I spent the entire day sweating like Miss Piggy as I vacuumed, scrubbed, polished and shined his lovely little Lexus. He has been known to call it his little *cream puff*. Once my job was done, I inspected my fine work and was satisfied that I had done as good a job as any professional could have. I was happily exhausted.

Then I remembered that I had a 3:00 PM appointment with the doctor and if I didn't hurry, I was going to miss that appointment. I quickly ran inside, changed clothes, grabbed my purse and raced back outside to my car (the Sequoia). I started my engine and backed out of the carport with time clearly the only thing on my mind as I swiftly backed into the driver's side of his Lexus. Oops!

After my doctor's appointment, I had the dubious honor of spending a great deal of time on the phone with the insurance company. As polite as they were, it wasn't in the least bit fun.

Needless to say, he wasn't thrilled with the final outcome. Gee honey, look what I did to your car! Oh. Well. Happy Father's Day anyway! I guess it will be the year he remembers most vividly... Argh.

I think that this year I shall give him the gift that keeps on giving (no, not another dent in his car)... A subscription to the Dollar Shave Club. He's going to love it! It's a new web site that offers men a monthly new razor at rock bottom prices, often saving the consumer up to $100.00 a year. What man doesn't love to save money? I just loved their promotional video. Funny, funny.


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