Star Hill


According to the source of all knowledge ;), Wikipedia, Kismet is a word, possibly derived from Turkish, Urdu or Persian, meaning fate or destiny, a predetermined course of events. The word likely evolved from Arabic قسمة qisma, meaning lot, from قسم qasama, to divide, allot. The word kismet is also used in Hindi, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Albanian, and in some dialects of Serbian as luck. Now let me state up front that I am a Christian and I believe that nothing that happens is a surprise to Christ, but today I had one of those Kismet moments.
I had a meeting with a very important person today. While waiting to speak to this person I started talking to his secretary. She is a lovely lady who always looks put together and on top of her game professionally. I found out that she is a closet dumpster diva! She can sew and does very creative decorative work but she also drags home roadside finds and goes to garage sales. We started talking about her passion, decorating Habitat for Humanities homes. Yeah! This is an organization near and dear to me. There have been so many times over the years that I have found items that I would love to do something with, if only I had a home for the item. It was as if the doors of heaven opened and angels started singing while we talked. Due to my work schedule I could never volunteer to work on homes on my own but now, through her, I have a way to contribute as I have time and hopefully I will be able to get my kids involved too. I saw pictures of what she is currently doing for two little kids in our city and already have some ideas. If you are one of my friends, start thinking about furniture you have that needs a new home. I will make sure it gets one. I am so excited to start helping her out. The first thing will be a blackboard for the little girl’s room. Hot pink frame.

Star Hill

Molly Rae

When Hubby and I head out for Star Hill, we are not alone. For the past 13 years I have had to compete for Hubby’s attention because another girl is in love with him. She is a chubby, petite redhead. Her name is Molly Rae. She is officially our daughter’s registered pomeranian, but believe me when I tell you her heart belongs to my husband. At 13 (81 in human years) she has cataracts, she is hard of hearing, some days her joints don’t work too well, she snores, and she has to get up in the night to go to the potty. We have more than a few things in common. Molly LOVES to go to Star Hill almost as much as she loves  Hubby. She smiles all the way there in the back seat of the truck. I think it is because she has figured out that she is going to spend the weekend with her man.  The old lady has a lot more freedom up in the country.  She loves to lay on the front porch hoping to catch a glimpse of movement so she can bark at it.  She is a true Weekend Country Girl. 

I took the red out of her eyes and she looks creepy. 


In the summer we have to cut her hair to keep the stickers, fleas, and ticks of her.  Hubby calls her going into the woods mud grubbin.  I just think she is looking for something to eat.  She thinks she looks great with her hair cut off.  Silly dog.

Coldspring, Country living, Country Style, Gates, Texas

Gates in the Country

Before we knew there would be two weddings and a foundation, I was thinking hard that we need a gate at Star Hill. Not just a gate mind you, because gates in the country say something about you. A gate is a social status out in the woods. I love to drive by a great gate and wonder about the people who live there. I do not have a picture of my favorite gate because it is out in the country and we were too busy to drive out there this past weekend.  It says The Double Nickle and has a big 55 on it.  I wonder… was someone 55 when they built the place, is it 55 acres, has it been in the family since 1855? I wonder about things like that.

Here are some of my favorite gates near Star Hill.  I wonder about these folks too.

 I always feel like we are there when we get to this gate.  It is so wooded that I wonder what is behind the gate.
Is there a mansion or a shack back in those woods?
The West Mansion  Solar powered key less entry.  Fancy.
A beautiful old homestead in Point Blank, four miles from Star Hill.
This is a real deal gate.  I love the longhorns eating on the driveway.  Family Established 1845.
Hubby honked to make the longhorn look at me but I was too nervous to get closer.

This horse ranch is on a hill near Cape Royale.  Gorgeous.  No lazy people live here.

See the tree man behind this artistic gate?

I love the landscaping around the gate. 
This gate is not used often. I hope the gate at Star Hill never looks like this.

This is probably what our gate will look like, just plain old metal, because that is who we are, but I can dream… right?

Chair, rescuing damaged furniture

Beware the Two Dollar Chair

This past weekend, on the way home from the Coldspring parade, we stopped at a yard sale. There was an old chair sitting out in the yard that I thought would work in the bedroom I am giving a makeover. It is solid wood with an upholstered chair seat. The lady at the sale told me the chair was $2.00 because it was “wobbly”. It did seem to be a little shaky, but chairs are generally pretty easy to tighten up. I bought the chair and headed home with visions of a dark gray chair with some of the fabric I used on the lamp shade.

This is the only photo I have of the chair before the carnage began.

When I took the seat off it was obvious that some former owner who did not know how to repair furniture had attempted to fix the wobble with nails and wood glue. Lots of little nails. The sizes varied and they were at every joint, connection, and rung. FYI don’t use nails to fix furniture. Screws can tighten furniture joints but nails cannot.
The glue had been literally poured into every joint. FYI more glue is not better with wood glue.
It was obvious that this easy tighten up was going to turn into a total deconstruction and rebuild.
Just look at how happy Hubby looks working on the chair.

 He went from this expression…
to this one pretty quickly.

Hubby asked me several times how much I paid for the chair as he took it apart, nail by nail.

It looks like he is going to have to drill out a few of the dowels then rebuild it. I have a feeling that this project could take a while.
Note to self, turn the wobbly chair over to inspect even if it is $2.00.

Blogging, mid-life

Blogging Milestones

I have been blogging for two months now.  I have reached a few milestones that I set for myself and I wanted to thank you and answer a few questions that may be out there.


Are you retired?

  • No, I have not retired.   I still work full time and so does Hubby.  You are just seeing what we do at Star Hill now.  It is not a new phenomenon. 

How does your husband know how to do everything you need him to do?

  • My husband grew up on a farm.  He learned early to do just about anything. He took wood shop in Troy, Texas and was in FFA. What he did not learn on the farm, he has learned through the school of hard knocks (A.K.A. being married to me!)  He also looks things up on the Internet and subscribes to the Handyman magazine.

Where do you find the stuff you redo?

  • Most of the stuff comes from resale shops and garage sales.  I am not afraid to stop and pick up junk on the side of the road.  I don’t know what I am looking for until I see it.

    I have tried to post on your blog but I can’t.  Why not?

    • You can now!  Because I have a very public job, I did not want just anyone to put things on my blog that I may or may not agree with.  I had it locked down to just a few folks, but now anyone can post.  I will get an email and will read the post then publish it.  Tell me what you think! 

    My favorite question:

    Are you going to quit work and blog full time? 

    • The most hilarious question I get.  I have started to allow advertising on my blog but as of today I have earned a total of $2.78.  I do this because I wanted to encourage other mid-lifers to get out and do something that you love.  We love our weekend home and making it special for us grew into the craft projects. 


    I am learning more and more how to blog effectively.  As of today I have had almost 3000 page views. 

    I have been re-pinned on Pinterest!  This gave me joy.

    I had someone use what I did to make their own craft project. (It was WAAAY swankier than mine but I was still the inspiration!  Woo Hoo!  Here are pictures of her wreath!  Way to go SB.

    Coldspring, parade, rodeo

    Rodeo Parade in Coldspring

    Being a city girl, I am fascinated with small town events.  I love to attend anything to do with the town of Coldspring.  I love the fact that everyone can participate, and that the whole town shuts down for the event.
    Here are some pictures from this past weekend’s San Jacinto Livestock Show and Rodeo Parade.  It was a beautiful day and lots of fun.

     Marching in for the Battle of the Bands.  Two bands- Coldspring Oakhurst ISD and Shepard ISD

     The cowboys lining up for the parade.

     There were beauty queens.

     And politicians.  I love that this guy is named Sam Houston.

     The youth football team

     Cowboy Church


     Cutest little girl at the parade.  She loved the cheerleaders and the band.


    Rodeo Clown

    Coldspring, Star Hill

    Cutting Down Trees at Star Hill

    My Hubby loves a chainsaw.  I mean he is all smiles when he gets out the big ugly chainsaw and cranks it up.  The problem with his love of chainsawing is that I am TERRIFIED of it.  I have good reasons for my fear.  A neighbor borrowed the saw years ago.  I saw him cut his leg to the bone then had the joy of driving him to the emergency room.  My Star Hill neighbor also had a nice hole punched into their garage thanks to Hubby and his sawing.  Last year we had the worst drought on record in our area.  Trees died in droves around us. We lost two water oaks that I loved, we also lost 4 huge pines on the ridge behind the house and Garagemahal.

     Hubby has been “hankerin” to take them down.  I told him that the only way he could take down the trees was for me to be gone, another man to be there and he had to have our health and homeowners insurance papers in the front seat of the truck.  I did not want to be called until he was in recovery or the adjuster had left.  Thankfully he paid someone to take out the trees this past weekend.  Yeah!  Hubby took pictures for you to enjoy.  I did not see any of this.

     The biggest dead tree.  Note the house in the picture below.  It could have done some major damage.

     The rest of the trees were behind the Garagemahal.

     Here is a close up of one of the dead trees.


    All that is left is a bunch of stumps. 

    Chair, DIY Furniture, Map, Mod Podge

    Using a Map to Redo a Chair

    I believe in eating dessert first so I am going to show you my favorite project of the weekend.  I have had an old chair in my garage at the city house and then in the Garagemahal for years.  A family friend, Homer, who I loved, gave this to me years ago so that I had an old chair to put a potted plant into.  Homer was a crafter like nobody’s business.  He turned barrels into tables, had cowboy boot table legs, used tractor seats for bar stools.  I loved going to Homer and Juanita’s house.  I miss them both.

    I never did get around to cutting a hole in the chair to put a plant into the seat and I am really glad.  I have seen a ton of stuff recently on Pinterest where a map was Mod Podged onto something.  I thought that this would be the perfect project for the chair.  Of course I had to use a Texas map we got at the visitor center for the map and I made sure that Coldspring was prominently displayed.  Here is the project:

    The first step was easy.  Remove the worn out seat from the chair.  Screws were in the bottom.  I did it by myself.

    The next step started out easy.  Remove the veneer from the seat.  A lot of it was already loose or gone.
    It got too hard for me at the end so Hubby had to chisel it off.
    Next sanded it all then I painted everything with one coat of paint  I used paint left over from the Lovebirds’ furniture.  Valspar- Rapids
    I painted the chair frame with two coats of paint.
    I loved the color.

    Next, I laid the seat on top of the map and moved it around until I had a good location.  I wanted to put all places we have lived on the seat, but no luck.  I could not get Dimmit and Beeville to play nice so they both had to go.  That was it for the day.

    This morning I got up early and got busy.

    I cut out the map and then I Mod Podged the map to the seat.  It brought back a lot of memories for me and my Social Planner who was a weekend guest.  Did you guys Mod Podge when you were kids too?  I used a plastic putty knife to smooth it out as I went along.  It was easier than I remembered.  My Social Planner thought I should call this post Crafting with Coffee.

    After I  finished the seat.  I decided to rough up the chair.  I took some sand paper and removed paint where it stuck out or where normal wear and tear would occur.

    Here she is all put together!  Love it. This is going to make a great craft chair.

    At the craft corner.
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    Star Hill

    Outside at Star Hill

     I love, love, love the berries that get ripe in the fall.  None are edible, but they are pretty.
     I love the moss that grows on the trees,
     The birds!

     I took this one morning from the boat.

     The pond at the bottom of Star Hill

    I love being outside in the fall.  I love just about everything about fall.  I love the colors- red, yellows, browns, and greens.  I love the weather.  In Texas fall is cool, but not cold. The hummingbirds come through in droves. The sunsets and sunrises are even more beautiful for some reason at this time of year.  The only thing I really don’t love is ragweed.  I am super allergic.  I live on allergy medication during the fall, but it is worth it just to spend so much time outside.