I thank my parents for raising me as a horse loving Texas Hill Country girl. Nine Thanksgiving ago my sisters and I lost my mother. We lost our father nineteen years ago. They loved family and every holiday, plus some we were making the rounds to visit loved ones. We were shown through example that family matters.
A few years ago my sisters and I started a new tradition for Thanksgiving. We rented a cabin by the Frio River in Leakey, Texas. (our parents married in Leakey) A cousin from my family and a cousin from my brother-in-law’s joined in and we stay for four days.
The rest of my mother’s family, including her mother, join us. We bounce between 30 to 50 people on Thursday. In a world that moves fast and people spend more time looking down at a screen than into the face of real people, personal connections with extended family gives us roots and a healthier life. As humans, the need for relationships with others and nature is built into our DNA. To me Thanksgiving is not about the food…it’s the people and getting away from the rush of daily life.
These old trees make me think of how time moves and the world changes, but God is constant. We come and go but the world keeps turning. I love to take time and enjoy the peace these trees give me.
Play some games! How to have fun at a Texas Hill Country Thanksgiving.
My Grandmother and seven (of ten)of her great-grandchildren from her oldest child, my mother, Cindy French Guinther. She has a total of thirty great-grandchildren.
Since we are on a Texas Hill Country ranch we have to include a Longhorn.
Even thought we had rain we had fun. You have to set your mind to it sometimes but it can always be found. Play in the Rain!
Play in the Rain! Life is too short to wait around for the right time. Give thanks for the rain and the sun, the wind and the opportunity to experience it all.
There’s a rumor about Texas that we only have one season.
Some say we have two seasons..hot and hotter than hell.
I’m here to tell you it’s not true, not for the Hill Country anyway. We have football season
Then we have baseball season…
And the favorite in the Navarro household…Basketball season!
What? You weren’t talking about sport seasons? Well, than we do have hunting season….
Oh, you mean the seasons of weather? We do have more than HOT…let’s look at the evidence.
One of my Favorite seasons is fall or as some might call it autumn. A great deal of our trees and plants stay green but we do have some beautiful reds and yellows along the river.
Our winters are pretty mild. Ice is our worst enemy, but it never last past noon! LOL We have been known to get a few flurries of snow. Now remember, I’m central Texas, in the southern tip of the Hill Country. So West Texas and North Texas they have their own set of weather patterns. The hills must break up all that cold stuff that blows down from Canada. Poor Dallas. We do get all grey and cold looking but if it last more than a week we think something has gone wrong.
Aww..Springtime. Everyone loves spring , right? And it would not be a post about Texas If I didn’t include the Texas State Flower.
And then we have one of our most famous seasons and our longest…Summer. In Texas summer is best if you are on are by water.
Generations of my family have been born and raised in the Texas Hill Country and now I write about fictional characters that live in the same beautiful county.
Some people have an image of Texas as a giant state of flat lands with tumble weeds and golden grass. There are parts of Texas that would resemble that stereotype there are more places that bust it.
In my books the sun is often raising or setting over the hills of Texas. I love the area of Frio Canyon, where the head waters of the Frio River can be found. Garner State park is nestled in this area between Kerrville Texas and Uvalde, north of San Antonio and south of Austin. It’s my favorite piece of earth.
This Thanksgiving some extended family along with my husband and kids with be renting a cabin in in the woods by the river to celebrate our blessings. We won’t be the only ones.
You can’t talk Texas Hill Country without at least one picture of cowboys. Not everyone owns a hat or rides a horse, but the ones that do are fun to watch.
Do you have a favorite place on earth and do you have the pleasure of living there or just dream about living there?
The Texas Hill Country is full for fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables. You can also find homemade products made from this produce here in Boerne Texas at the Farmer’s Market at the Cibolo Nature Park.
I think we get so removed from our food, hows it’s grown and with so many perspectives and chemicals we forget what real food taste like.
Join me for a walk through the booths. The textures and aromas are inspiring and I know one of my characters has to grow their own foods and sell at market.
If you don’t live in the San Antonio area I know you can find a local market close to you. If you visit your local Farmers Market you are supporting your local growers that provided fresh, local, and seasonal products that they themselves planted, raised, and harvested. You can’t beat the flavor.
I love buying the locally grown flowers from the market – I know they’re from my area and ready for the flowerbeds around my house.
Don’t forget to give your helper a treat!
You can find more than food – crafts and home products
Vegetable & fruits picked right from the garden, products handmade from organic produce, bread, jams and creams are just a few of the items you can find in the early morning of the Farmer’s Market. Boerne’s Cibolo Farmer’s Market is young, only in its second year, but it is a true treasure. If you are in the area they need your support. There is also games, music and a beautiful community garden.
Schedule and Location:
Every Saturday, 8:30a-12:30p
33 Herff Road, Boerne, TX 78006
Do you have a local market you visit? Do you have a favorite recipe using fresh produce from your market?
It’s spring time, so here in the Texas Hill Country the wildflowers are blooming. Our most famous flower is the beautiful Bluebonnet.
Texas wildflowers are hardy, strong and independent, while maintaining their natural beauty. The people of Texas share many of the traits.
Another of my favorites ways to spend time is watching football. Yes my husband coaches it and my boys play it. My daughters truly enjoyed their time playing power-puff football.
This year was my oldest son’s last year to play, my youngest has at least two more years. So I still have a bit of drama, conflict and excitement for a few future Friday nights.
Just for fun I’ll throw in a bit of NFL action.
So are you more of a flower fairy or a football fan?
I am taking on the Blogging A to Z April challenge. http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com. My theme is thing that bring me joy and happiness. One of my favorite heroes to write about is cowboys. Salt of the earth, a little rough around the edges, hard working, kind and a throw in a bit of crazy.
In the sky I see my smallness and my greatness. The knowledge that the world spins, seasons come and go and each day will have a new beginning and an end comforts me in it routine. Great things will happen and I will celebrate; bad things will happen and I will survive. The mysteries of life are in God’s hands and I’m just to do the best I can.
My father loved and savored the daily events of a sunrise and sunset. I’ve been known to make my family stop so I can take a picture and for a moment think of the permanent change that is our life. Add your favorite sky picture you have taken.
Here are a few of my pictures along with a poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
THE HOUSE OF CLOUDS. 1841
I would build a cloudy house
For my thoughts to live in,
When for earth too fancy-loose,
And too low for heaven.
I sleep, and talk my dream aloud,
I build it fair to see—
I build it on the moonlit cloud,
To which I looked with thee.
Cloud-walls of the morning’s grey,
Faced with amber column,
Crowned with crimson cupola
From a sunset solemn—
For casements, from the valley fetch
With a sunbeam hid in each,
And a smell of spring.
Build the entrance high and proud,
Darkening and eke brightening,
Of a riven thunder-cloud
Veinëd with the lightning.
Use one with an iris-stain
For the door within,
Turning to a sound like rain
As we enter in.
For the fair hall reached thereby
Walled with cloudy whiteness, Take the blue place in the sky,
Wind-worked into brightness—
Whence corridores and long degrees
Of cloud-stairs wind away—
Till children wish upon their knees,
They walkëd where they pray.
Be my chamber tapestried
With the showers of summer,
Close and silent, glorified
When the sunbeams come there—
Sudden harpers, harping on
Every drop as such,—
Drawing colours like a tune,
Measured to the touch.
Bring a shadow green and still
From the chesnut forest—
Bring a purple from the hill
When the heat is sorest,—
Spread them out from wall to wall,
Carpet-wove around; And thereupon the foot shall fall
In light instead of sound.
Bring a grey cloud from the east
Where the lark was singing—
Something of the song at least
Lost not in the bringing,—
And that shall be a morning chair
For poet-dreams,—when with them
No verse constraint—the floating air
Their only, lovely rhythm.
Bring the red cloud from the sun—
While he sinketh, catch it,—
Bring it for a couch, with one
Side-long star to watch it—
Fit for a poet’s finest thought,
At curfew time, to lean;
When things invisible are brought
More near him than the seen. Poet’s thought, not poet’s sigh!—
Alas! they come together!
Cloudy walls divide and fly
As if in April weather.
Hall, corridore, and column proud—
My chamber fair to see—
All pass—except that moonlit cloud
To which I looked with thee.
Let them!– Wipe such visionings
From the fancy’s cartel;
Love secures some frailest things,
Dowered with his immortal.
Suns, moons may darken—heaven be bowed,—
But here unchanged shall be,
Here in my soul—that moonlit cloud,
To which I looked with thee.