Riding the Sisters

We made plans a few weeks ago to make the trek out to the Hill Country of Texas to ride the motorcycle extravaganza of the Sisters. FM 335, 336, 337 out of Leakey, Tx is an amazing twisting, turning, rocky, breathtaking, wonderful view of a side of Texas most don’t see.
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On the way in we had to make a stop in the famous Luckenbach, TX. There was live music, and a guy riding on a longhorn steer looking for photo opportunities. Where else can you stop where Waylon, Willie, and the boys are so famous? It was a grand time.

Post office in Luckenbach, Tx

Post office in Luckenbach, Tx

Leakey (pronounced lake-y) has a population of 427 people and is the Mecca of motor enthusiasts in Texas for many reasons, namely the Sisters. Down the road in Vanderpool is the Motorcycle Museum.

We saw a corvette club, a classic car club, Yamaha motorcycles, Honda motorcycles, and Harley out the wa-zoo!

What we also saw in this beautiful setting was Turkey, Elk, White tail deer, Fallow Deer, Other exotics, hawks, Ferrel hogs, a Peacock, and 2 giraffe! There were compounds tucked between the hills with massive stucco walls with broken glass topping, it made me wonder what they had to hide? There were friendly shopkeepers wanting to promote business. There were buzzards feasting on the unfortunate that didn’t make it across the road. Of course, there were plenty of cattle, and calves that frolicked in the late spring mornings.

Not to mention the hills…..wowsa! I mean WOWSA! It was like being in a whole new world. I’ve traveled most of the state. Amarillo, Texarkana, Dallas, Del Rio, McAllen, Brownsville, South Padre, Corpus Christi, Houston, Beaumont, San Antonio, Austin, Uvalde, Castroville,( everywhere in central Texas) this area is another world. It’s more than the hill country in Boerne, Canyon, Wimberly, or Kerrville. It’s not Ski County hills by any means. In context, it’s just the best place in Texas for Hills, high county desert-like settings, but with big Oaks, rivers, and real people hospitality.

Vanderpool, TX on 337

Vanderpool, TX on 337

There is nothing like going down an unfamiliar road and seeing signs like “roaming livestock”, “falling rocks” “flooding next 23 miles”, “sharp turns, steep grades next 8 miles”. I have to tell you, they weren’t kidding. There were literally roaming livestock, and 6 cattle guards we had to cross on FM 336…..the cows and cow poop were in the road. The calves were hilarious running from the motorcycle bleating for “mom”, and “mom” running to the rescue. We motored away quickly, “mom” meant business.

The Turkey were hilarious! They would run down the road in front of us like drunken miscreants as if shouting “oh crap, they found us!” Until they got enough speed up to achieve flight, some of it was really sad flight…just enough to get them into the closest cedar.

The place we stayed was a little Jewel called St. Claire’s Cabin. We found it on VRBO. It’s not easy to find, unless you have directions, it’s not impressive to view from outside…..but what it is, is a peaceful relaxing, wonderful small town cabin on lovely acreage. Quiet, quaint, comfortable, with little hints of over-the-top hospitality like fluffy soft towels, ice cream recipes with an ice cream maker on site, and my favorite….the outdoor shower. I have to say that was one of the most relaxing, homey, comfy, lovely places I’ve ever had an opportunity to stay. I’m a very conventional gal…..but the outdoor shower captured me completely. It was what I looked forward to most after coming off of 8 hours riding on the back of my husband’s bike. It was truly a refreshing, freeing, and relaxing experience. Yep. Big thumbs up on the outdoor shower!

Pink Floyd…what?

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One of my co workers had her Pink Floyd cup at a meeting a few weeks ago. When asked, she only replied “I like them!” I hope she likes this rendition.

Like what you like, and laugh when you can!

This one’s for you Dana.

Looking for the good!

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Yesterday was a good day. Beautiful weather, good rental car to drive, excellent prospect meetings, and a clean hotel to stay.

I’m ready for an even better day today! I was able to get in my 3.1 I made reasonable time. I’m still slightly suspicious of hotel fitness equipment, and their calorie and distance calibrations, but I based my time after what I’m used to at home, and if I burned 385 calories in 42 minutes, that’s just a little icing on the cake.

I see good things coming my way, and I’m looking for ways to be good to someone.

It’s Thursday! Go be nice to someone!

Not my Circus

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This quote made me laugh. There are days that it seems like I’m in a circus, and the monkeys have run amok.

I have to sit back in those moments of chaos, and asses what I’m responsible for. What is my part in this circus? If I didn’t cause the chaos, why do I feel the need to fix it?

I’m getting better at keeping my own monkeys in line, and letting everyone else deal with theirs.

So if it isn’t my monkey, it’s not my circus. I’m ok with that. Someone call the Ring Master, he left his top hat in my car, and he needs to come get it. The show is about to start.

Laugh like you mean it!

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I’m a snorter. In times past I would try so hard not to snort. It made me self conscious, and embarrassed to laugh. I wanted a cute little laugh, something musical, lyrical, and feminine. Nope….I got the snort.

Can you imagine being afraid to laugh, because you’re afraid of people making fun of how you laugh? That is robbery! Don’t let anyone steal your laugh.

If you are a snorter like me, let it out! It will make the laughter last longer, because it usually shocks the snot out of people, and they laugh more!

Keep the laughter rolling today! Laugh like you mean it.

5 steps?

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I’ve never been a big fan of step programs, be they a 5 step, 7 step, 12 step, or ‘give me three steps mister’. I will say that there is a lot to making things simple, and having an outline, or definition.

The chase for happiness is everywhere. We check how we ‘feel’ about things, we measure words, actions, and perceptions. Advertising bombards us with messages on how the product will change our dreary lives and make us happy. Travel, buy, go, do, run, walk, eat, drink, it’s exhausting!

In the decision making process to buy a motorcycle, one thing keeps popping up in my thoughts….it won’t make me any happier than I am right now. There might be a few weeks of wow, and focus on my skill building, but in the end it will be a motorcycle, and I will still be at the same level of happiness that I’ve always been in.

In a sermon I heard last year from Keith Moore in Branson, MO he said “Expect Nothing from people, be thankful for everything”.

It got me thinking. Placing too much expectation on people causes a good deal of unhappiness. People are just people. Most of them can’t read minds, most have their own needs, desires, and agendas, and most (all, really) are not destined to be the source of anyone else’s happiness.

Placing too much emphasis on things for happiness can go downhill just as fast, if not faster.

Step 1. Free your heart from hatred. Let the people off the hook for disappointing you, doing you wrong, hurting you. Hating someone is like you drinking poison and wanting them to die. Your hate won’t change their life, it will just hurt yours.

Step 2. Free your mind from worry. That’s a tough one, sure, but it’s YOUR mind, take control of those worries, and focus on something else. Sing a song, write down things you are grateful for. Focus outside yourself.

Step 3. Live Simply. No, you don’t have to move to a 10×10 room and chant all day long. Just keep things simple. If you find things getting complicated and too involved, take a step back and try another way.

Step 4. Give. I like this one, because I have experienced how much fun it is to give, especially something unexpected. It doesn’t have to be anything big. Smile at someone. Open a door for someone. Pay a compliment to the person ringing up your groceries.

Step 5. Expect less. I pondered this one, truthfully. My take on this step is Don’t expect people and things to make you happy. Let the people you have been mad at for letting you down off the hook, and be happy anyway. Don’t expect a new car, a trip, a meal, or anything else to make you happy. Enjoy those things yes, they are meant to enjoy. Remember, it’s just stuff.

Be grateful and the happiness and contentment we all need will grow.

Go be nice to someone today!

On the road in Central Texas

What a day to be driving! Flowers everywhere, sunshine, and happy people on a Monday, did I wake up in a different dimension? Mondays aren’t supposed to flow this well.

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I stopped for lunch at a spot next to the Colorado River, the Brewhouse in Bastrop, and had a sample of their Honey White beer that they brew on site. Lovely fish tacos for lunch along with a fabulous view of the river and the prettiest golden flowers on the tree next to me with bees buzzing happily. I have to find out what that tree was.

It would have been awesome to walk down the stone path all the way to the river and enjoy the sound of the water, but time has not been my own today.

Still, what a sweet lunch time diversion to sit on a balcony overlooking a peaceful river, watching bees buzz, and sampling a small home brewed libation. Yummy on all counts.

Go smell some flowers ya’ll! Happy Monday!

Inner Sparkle=Outward Shine

Inner Sparkle=Outward Shine

Before we can shine outwardly, we have to sparkle inside too. Find something you like about yourself, and start sparkling!

Yesterday we were out with our riding buddies enjoying a blue-bird day in South Texas on the motorcycles. One of the ladies in our group is a year older than me, and a stunningly beautiful woman, and I’m secure enough to say that. She is a true beauty. What made me a little sad was that she was talking about losing 20 pounds, and bemoaning that she ‘wished she was as fat as she used to think she was’. That sparked another comment from a younger lady in our group who can absolutely light up a room with her smile, that she was taking a pill to lose weight.

That about knocked me over. I know I need to lose 20 pounds, well maybe 30, but it took me 20 years to gain this weight. I’m not going to lose it over night. It’s coming off as I exercise, eat right, and utilize portion control. The running is helping, and the elliptical and I will go for our 3.1 miles later this afternoon.

What I realized yesterday, as I heard these rare beauties bemoan their current state, is that it really all starts with our thoughts. I can think they are stunning, but they have a vision that they want to see again.

I applaud their vision for themselves, and their desire to change their outward appearance. I want to remind them that they are beautiful right now, they sparkle with their own unique fire, and to not let their inner sparkle go out because their current reflection doesn’t match what they think they need to look like.

It reminded me to be kind to myself too. I can understand and relate where these women are coming from. I may not have the physical attributes of these beauties, but I can sparkle. The loveliest women shine with happiness. I can’t be happy if my thoughts only see the flaws in the mirror.

So today I’m practicing to find something I like about myself, and letting my sparkle come to life.