Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Day 23 and Day 24: Visiting Grandma (Jeannie's Mom) in Levelland

Day 23 begins in Dallas. We are headed for Levelland for a couple of days to see Jeannie's mom Emma Jean and Jeannie's brother Bobby and his wife Ann.

We will go through Vernon to put some fresh flowers at the grave of Jeannie's father, Leonard.

However, on the way to Vernon we drive through Wichita Falls, and three years ago, I told my friend Debbie, who is the grants administrator for The Priddy Foundation, that the next time I was in Wichita Falls, that I would surprise them and stop in.

Today was that day, and here we are, and they were surprised.

That is David on the left, the President of The Priddy Foundation, then Pat the administrator, and Debbie, the grants administrator.
You could drive 1000 miles in any direction and not find any nicer more genuine people, and the grants that they (The Priddy Foundation) have awarded to school districts in the area have helped and trained teachers to assist hundreds of students to pass College Board Advanced Placement exams. Wichita Falls ISD and Burkburnett ISD are districts among the best in Texas in that area.

For me, it was one of the highlights of the grandslamtrip to see them again.

After Wichita Falls, we drove to Vernon.

Jeannie's father Leonard, was a great man. He helped raise his brothers and sisters as his father died when Leonard was still in his teens. Leonard fought in the Pacific during World War II, and then he met and married Emma Jean, and worked at the Waggoner Ranch for 48 years. He was a kind man who provided for his family.

Although it is a tough segue, after visiting Leonard's gravesite, we went into Vernon to eat lunch.
Bevo's Drive-in, a Vernon institution since 1972.

Not much has changed since it opened. Great hamburgers, fries, onion rings, etc. and a tribute to the Texas Longhorns football team.

From Vernon to Levelland is miles and miles of miles and miles.

My mother in law, Emma Jean, the best mother in law I could ever imagine.

One of the greatest moms in the world.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Day 22: Rest and Reminisce

On Tuesday, we head to Levelland, which is just west of Lubbock to see Jeannie's mom, Emma Jean.

We will stop on the way in Vernon to place some flowers on Jeannie's Dad's (Leonard) grave.

Today, we are home in Dallas
and reminiscing.

Souvenir cups -- the best deal was in Milwaukee.

Here is a mascot recap.

Rangers Captain (Texas Rangers)

Mr. Red (Cincinnati Reds)

Bernie (Milwaukee Brewers)

Fake Tiger mascot at Tiger--White Sox game in Chicago

PAWS, the real Detroit Tiger mascot in Detroit

Slider (Cleveland Indians)

Pirate Parrot (Pittsburgh Pirates)

Steven--Mr. Philly Cheese Steak (New York Yankees) our adopted mascot for giving us two great tickets

SCREECH (Washington Nationals)

Rally (Atlanta Braves)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Day 21: Back in Dallas and Cindy brought us dinner

We drove from the wedding in Austin back to Dallas (actually Lewisville), and our friend Cindy brought us dinner. Yea Cindy -- real food after 20 days of hot dogs, barbecue, pizza, hamburgers, ice cream and chile (except for Mary Mahoney's and my niece's delicious homemade dinner at Seaside, Florida).

On Tuesday, we head west.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Day 20-- June 26: Whitney and Tim's Wedding, Jeannie's Birthday and Debi's Birthday

Day 20:

Happy Birthday





Whitney and Tim had a beautiful wedding, open air at sunset overlooking Lake Travis.
Whitney's proud parents, Bobby and Ann, along with Whitney and Tim
Josie and Stewart at the reception
The first dance
How about this for a groom's cake -- the perfect treat to start a great marriage.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Day 19: Niece Whitney's (marrying Tim) rehearsal dinner

Today, we are in northwest Austin at niece Whitney's rehearsal dinner.

Jeannie and two fine sons, Stewart and Michael.

Stewart, his friend Josie, and Michael

The cousins, Stewart and bride Whitney, who is a kindergarten teacher in Tyler, Texas.

Cousin James, Whitney's brother, who had his wedding last October.

Walter with his two fine sons, Michael and Stewart.
Whitney's parents, Bobby and Ann
Sister and brother
Ann and Jeannie

Walter and nephew James with a hippo
Jeannie either --
A) Lost a bet
B) Had two glasses of wine
C) Agreed to add some pizzazz to the family pictures
D) All of the above

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Day 18: San Francisco Giants vs Houston Astros

Going back to Houston.

This is the view from our seats. The Houston Astro ball park, Minute Maid Field has a retractable roof, and fortunately it was closed today as the temperature and humidity outside were both in the 90s.

On the screen are the Chilton sisters who are singing the Star-Spangled Banner.

Here are the Chilton sisters with their parents. They are kind of like modern day Lennon Sisters.

I was there.

Everything is big in Texas.

Seventh inning stretch

Even though the roof is closed, these huge windows behind left field make it look somewhat open air.

On last look at Minute Maid field which has this quirky rise in centerfield along with one flagpole that is on the field

The mighty Astros are victorious by a score of 7 to 5.

Later, at dinner...
This is my mom, Lillian, 90 and going strong -- still telling me to pull up my pants and comb my hair.

Besides seeing my mom in Houston, I had a special reunion.

This is Cyndy who I have not seen for over forty years. We were friends at SMU and reconnected through the miracle of facebook. When we get to California, I will see another friend of mine and Cyndy's, Gail, who I also have not seen for over forty years.

Cyndy and I had a great time today remembering and reminiscing the 60s.

Tomorrow, we go to Austin for my niece Whitney's wedding.