Monthly Archives: August 2015

Monday, August 31, 2015 – New Vocabulary Words Needed for the Fall

Monday, August 31, 2015 – New Vocabulary Words Needed for the Fall

Good morning, class. It is the second week of school so time to start our assessment practice. Today we will learn five new vocabulary words. These new words will be on the state assessment and are important as we kick of the first week of college football. So pay attention and read on.

Last week the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) announced new words added to the vocabulary of the English speaking world.

Back Story: The OED is the giant tome that sat on a pedestal in your high school library. It is the definitive book on the English language. Here are the new words that will be on your assessment.

Beer o’clock and wine o’clock – both are nouns noting “the appropriate time of day to start drinking.”

There is no whiskey o’clock? What is considered the “appropriate time” For my Uncle Ralph beer o’clock started about 7:30 each morning. For my Uncle Horn, every hour of the day or night was considered appropriate. For football season, the appropriate time to start drinking is dependent on the time of the game and who is playing.

Fatberg – also a noun meaning “a very large mass of solid waste in a sewer system consisting of especially congealed fat and personal hygiene products that have been flushed down the toilet.” GROSS.

Butt Dial – a verb meaning “one accidently calls another while their cell phone is their back pocket.”

It is a butt dial if the phone just rings and there is no one on the other end. If there is a voice message that says “Alabama Sucks!” or “Aggies play like fatbergs” those are not butt dials; those are obscene phone calls. Those phone calls are usually correlated with beer, wine or whiskey o’clock.

Cat café – a noun meaning “a café or similar establish where people pay to interact with cats housed on the premises.”

OK, I love cats, but if I wanted to pay to interact with one, I would go to the shelter and get one, bring it home and interact with it in the confines of my home – while I drink and watch football games.

And so this week begins football season so get ready for Here’s What I’m Thinking about it. It is time to get your college football geek ready to go. See you in the end zone!

Charlie (800x598)

On a sad note: I learned yesterday that the beautiful Charlie Horse pictured on Friday’s post passed away earlier this summer. RIP Charlie.

Friday, August 28, 2015 – Snarky Friday – Friday Night Lights and BVCHEA Mustangs Update

Friday, August 28, 2015 – Snarky Friday – Friday Night Lights and BVCHEA Mustangs Update

For many high schools tonight is THE night. The Friday night lights hit the fields for the first football game of 2015. Let the pompoms shake, strike up the bands and high step the drill teams on to the field.

Go Mustangs!

“Give me a B. Give me a V. Give me a C. Give me an H.”… and so on and so forth.

Charlie (800x598)

I know it is not a Mustang, but a “horse is horse. Of course. Of course and no one can talk to a horse of course…” This is Charlie who belongs to one of my AXO sorority sisters.

I am pleased to update the Brazos Valley Christian Home School Education Association Homeschool High School. It appears a team for homecoming has been scheduled. The Mustangs will play the Conroe Lifestyle.

Even though I claim roots in Conroe and Montgomery County, I am not familiar with this organization. I am not sure if by Conroe Lifestyle it is a home school or something happening at Johnny B. Dalton’s. Nevertheless, there is a homecoming opponent.

In yesterday’s Bryan Eagle all of the football teams in the Brazos Valley were highlighted. Here’s a quote by the second year BVCHEA coach:

“We’re a young team, “BVCHEA coach Skipper Harris said. “We have three seniors and everybody else are juniors and sophomores. We’re going to have 19 players this year. This is the biggest turnout we’ve ever had.”

Just a thought, Coach Skipper. You might want to consider taking that administrative class about Community and Public Relations. That reporter will quote you exactly as you said it.

The article continues that the 19 players could correct a problem the plagued the homeschool organization’s team last year, when teams with more players had an advantage late in games. Yes, but it is still six-man football.

The BVCHEA were 4-7 in 2014 but went to the playoffs winning in bi-district and then losing to Allen Academy in the semi-finals. That sentence is not a typo. I guess 4-7 in a Homeschool league is good enough for the playoffs.

It appears that homeschool athletics are governed by the Texas Christian Athletic League (TCAL) I am not familiar with this organization. It appears the TCAL governs four divisions across the state with various home schools assigned to four regions. I would provide the website, but aside from the already given information, there is no additional content and most of the links are not operating.

I have no further comment about homeschooling. Yes, I do. Here’s what I’m thinking. There are several governance issues at play here. (Sorry for the pun.) It appears to me homeschoolers are creating some of the very organizational issues and constructs that they disagreed with in the public school system.

Oh well. Go Mustangs!

Thursday, August 27, 2015 – Throw Back Thursday – Hi Ho Silver Away!

Thursday, August 27, 2015 – Throw Back Thursday – Hi Ho Silver Away!

Lone Ranger

Trivia – Who played The Lone Ranger on TV? Extra credit if you can name who played Tonto.

I bet my Silver, or that wooden rocking horse is worth about $300 bucks now. Wish I still had it.

Answer: The Lone Ranger is an American western drama television series that aired on the ABC Television network from 1949 to 1957, with Clayton Moore in the starring role. Jay Silverheels, a member of the Mohawk tribe in Canada, played The Lone Ranger’s American Indian companion Tonto.

Got it Kemosabi?

Wednesday, August 26, 2015 – The Book Report or What Did You Read This Summer?

Wednesday, August 26, 2015 – The Book Report or What Did You Read This Summer?

Carnegie Library

Bryan Carnegie History Center, Bryan, Texas Scottish immigrant Andrew Carnegie firmly believed in self-education for everyone and that libraries helped those who helped themselves. He would provide funds for the construction of libraries if a city would provide a suitable site and agree to provide money equal to at least one tenth of the construction grant annually in order to maintain the library and purchase books. Bryan, Texas was among the early cities that took advantage of his offer in 1901.

I see where a Duke freshman does not want to read a book on the Duke University recommended reading list because it is against his moral stance. The name of the book is Fun Home by Alison Bechdel.

From the article – “This is the latest case of college students rejecting literature that deals with sexuality, violence, racism, and other themes that might make them uncomfortable. What we’re seeing here is a phenomena in which students are seeking not freedom of speech but freedom from speech they dislike.”–fun-home–part-of-larger-movement-against-uncomfortable-education-224428685.html

Here’s What I’m Thinking – Number one – the book is on the recommended list. That means there are other books you can read. Number two – a reason to go to college is to expand your viewpoints and learn about other cultures and viewpoints. It is does not mean you have to change yours. What are your plans for the rest of your life? To live in an intellectual and socially isolated bubble that contains only those who share your belief structure? Good luck.

I was offended (and it does take a lot to offend me) that the population of the United States went apedookey crazy over Fifty-Shades of Gray. Yes, I read all three. The entire series was offensive in terms of content, plot, characters and writing style and it should be offensive to every great writer that has ever come along. However, offensive I found the book, it did not make me want to run out and buy whips, chains and tickling things.

This summer I read the following books. I provided a short word or phrase that offends my moral stance on issues. I would recommend them all. What did you read?

  1. Texas Rising – Stephen L. Moore         (war; overthrow of government)
  2. The Sound and The Fury – William Faulkner (poverty, ignorance, incest)
  3. The Zookeeper’s Wife – Diane Ackerman     (Nazis, WWII, Holocaust)
  4. Go Set a Watchman – Harper Lee        (racism)
  5. Dead Wake – Erik Larson   (World War I; killing of innocent people; )
  6. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller – 2nd time and actually understand it this time (World War II)
  7. All the Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr – Pulitzer Prize Winner (Nazis, Holocaust, WWII)
  8. The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins   (murder, adultery,)
  9. Diamond Willow (read twice) – Helen Frost (teenage runaway)
  10. Cat’s Cradle – Kurt Vonnegut -second time to read; funnier this time (WWII and the atomic bomb, a satire)

Anybody offended?

Tuesday, August 25, 2015 – Merry Christmas and Day Two of the New School Year

Tuesday, August 25, 2015 – Merry Christmas and Day Two of the New School Year

We wish you a Merry Christmas – just four months from today. But today is the second day of the new school year and our attention turns to the high school counselor. So let’s get in the Way Back Machine and go to McCullough High School around 1978 and a line outside the counselor’s office.

Ship wreck 2 (800x537)

Student: Hi, Miss Duffey

M: Hey Nat. Why are you in line?

Mrs. P. has my vocational classes and academic classes all mixed up. See, first and second period are vocational, then third and fourth are academic and fifth and sixth are vocational. The vocational classes are at Conroe High School and the academic ones are at McC. How am I supposed to get back and forth?

M: I see.

And now a dialog in the counselor’s office.

Mrs. P. – Hello, Miss Duffey

Me: Blanche, there are 38 students in my fourth period American History class and six students in my fifth period class – one of whom says she has already taken American history at her previous school.

B: (shuffling papers) Well, now, let me see. The computer says… I see. Hmm.

Me: The computer does not talk. It is based on the numbers you put into it. So, please, you must level out the classes. Also, if I recall, I asked you to put Tommy Bittner in my first period American History class. I really want him with those others from my last year’s 8th Grade class. And he is not even in any of my classes.

B: Well, I will work on it and get it all straightened out.


Blanche Pressler – May you rest in incompetent and blissful peace.

Monday, August 24, 2015 – School Days, School Days, I’m So Glad I’m Not With You Days or Ellis’ First Day Back to School

Monday, August 24, 2015 – School Days, School Days, I’m So Glad I’m Not With You Days or Ellis’ First Day Back to School

The start of a new school year. I sincerely wish all of you a great start to a new year and continuing for the next 180 days. Or however many legislatively defined days of school there are at this time. May you have more days of instruction than assessment.

The Wall Cousins (800x599)

A treat in summers past was the family vacation. I vacationed with The Cousins and Niece#2 and her husband. I was the only other adult allowed to go. Of course, I did make all of them sign papers stating that if I died while on vacation, I would not be strapped to the roof top of the suburban on the return trip home. If I died while on the trip, I saw no reason for them to cancel the vacation and return as a result. I wasn’t going anywhere. I just did not want to be strapped to the roof. Besides it might look bad for business with those DEALER’S license plates.

After a lovely vaca in Galveston one summer, everyone was packing and loading vehicles for the returns to various homes. Our rooms were on the fourth floor and the one elevator was slow. The one elevator with no air conditioning was very slow.

The older cousins were loading cars downstairs. I arrived downstairs with my load of stuff just in time to overhear one of The Cousins say “He’s a little shit!” He immediately apologized for his language and when I asked who he was talking about, he said “Blaine.” Background: Blaine – GNephew#3 who was about 10 years old at the time – In the photo he is far right in the yellow shades

I agreed, left them loading cars and returned to the fourth floor to retrieve more gear, including the ice chest piled high with more stuff. I finally return to where The Cousins stood impatiently waiting. “What took you so long? And “Why are you sweating so much?”

I angrily replied “It was Ellis’ fault!”

“Ellis?” they asked.

“L. S. – Little Shit! Blaine jumped in the elevator, pressed all of the buttons and then jumped out. It took almost 5 minutes to reach the first floor.”

And now, as Paul Harvey would say, “The rest of the story.”

First day of school that year. Teacher calls roll.

“Blaine A?

“Here, but please call me Ellis.”

Later that afternoon the cell phone of “Ellis’” mother rings. This is Niece #2.

Blaine’s Teacher (laughing) “Niece #2, am I supposed to call Blaine, Ellis? He said he changed his name.”

Niece # 2 (mortified) “Oh no. I am so sorry, Blaine’s Teacher. We’ll talk to him. It might be a long year.”

Update: Today Ellis begins his junior year at Conroe High School taking all AP classes.

Sunday, August 23, 2015 – Butterflies

Sunday, August 23, 2015

In my back yard, shooting through a window.

Landing (800x529)


Butterfly 1 (681x800)

I am so pretty.

Open wings (766x800)

Just look how beautiful.

Underwings 1 (800x773)

From beneath my wings.

Saturday, August 22, 2015 – Vacation Bible School, The Magnolia Methodist Church and Singing

Saturday, August 22, 2015 – Vacation Bible School, The Magnolia Methodist Church and Singing

It’s a Saturday morning and I feel like writing something.

The biggest thing that would happen in the summers in Magnolia at the Methodist Church was when the Morgenroth brothers, Marvin, Cecil and Russell, visited their grandmother, Nina and all of their cousins in downtown Pinehurst. We would all attend Vacation Bible School at The Magnolia Methodist Church in downtown Magnolia.

Me & Cecil (656x672)

Delia Duffey & Cecil Morgenroth – 14 years old ??

We would be in the oldest group or “tweens” as they are called today – somewhere between 10- 14 year old. There were usually about 10 – 12 of us – more if the Bodkins were there. Their attendance was usually dependent on if our VCB conflicted with another that had better snacks.

The tweens would be the last to descend the stairs, past Doy and Joyce serving snacks, and turning right into the sanctuary to practice for the end of VBC program. This was my favorite part of VBC because it meant it was almost over. You know VBC was not my thing.

I vividly recall the first summer the Morgenroth brothers attended VBC and the tweens were to practice their song. I remember coming down the stairs from Sunday School rooms, turning right and through the door into the sanctuary. We would be aligned standing in two rows, one in front of the other on the two steps between the two pulpits. I feel certain Grace Moore was playing the piano and I cannot remember the song. All I remember was “Those Morgenroth brothers could sing!” I had never heard guys my age sing like that. I have vivid memories of jerking my head and thinking “Who is that singing?” Suddenly we were all trying to sing like them. Loud and joyous. And mostly on key like they were.

Suddenly there were two things I liked about VBC – it was almost over and hearing the Morgenroth brothers make a joyful noise unto the Lord.

Rickett Reunion 2009 017 (800x600) - Copy

Delia & Cecil @ Rickettt Reunion – 2009

They were better than the windmill cookies and red punch from Groves & Son. Still are today. Happy Saturday.


August 21, 2015 – Snarky Friday – Scheduling Issues, Weekend Trips and High School Football.

August 21, 2015 – Snarky Friday – Scheduling Issues, Weekend Trips and High School Football.

I am still trying to pull together the first month of my college football television schedule. Right now it looks like this.


At this point, Karen M., it appears my first weekend available to travel to a county in Texas that is still “dry” and has limited TV viewing opportunities (read: no bars), my first available weekend to attend an antique weekend in East Texas is February 2016.

The television sports in the Brazos Valley consists of two topics – those about Aggies – 8.0 minutes of the 10 minute sports allocation and those not about Aggies – anytime left over. In the “any time left over” slot, especially as high school football begins, a local sports team is highlighted. The other day I heard the sports announcer stumble trying to say “the BVCHEA Mustangs” football team. Research (read: Google) revealed the name of the school as Brazos Valley Christian Home Educators Home School High School.

The sports announcer continued his reporting by saying the “BVCHEA Mustangs would scrimmage this weekend against the East Home School. (No mascot identified).

Then I researched the BVCHEA (which actually stands for Brazos Valley Christian Home School Educators ASSOCIATION and does not really match the name of the high school) and looked at the football schedule. FYI-it is six-man football.

Since my schedule is difficult to read, I am going to share the BVCHEA Mustangs schedule.

Disclaimer: I am just sharing information and have no comments that I am making aloud or in writing. I believe the snark speaks for itself today. You may draw your own conclusions. However, I am interested in the Tribe of Bastrop and just wonder about the make-up of the Tribe with whom it is consolidated.,tx)/football/schedule.htm

BVCHEA Mustangs 2015 Football Schedule

August 8 @ 9:30 AM – FEAST HomeSchool (sic) (San Antonio) (Rivalry Game)

September 4 @ 7:30 PM         – @ Faith Academy (Bellville, TX)

September 11 @ 7:30 PM @ – Fort Bend Chargers HomeSchool (sic) (Rosenberg, TX)

September 18, @ 7:30 PM – TBA

September 25 @ 7:30 PM TBA – Homecoming

October 2 @ 7:30 PM @ – Texas Christian (Houston, Texas)

October 9 @ 7:00 PM – Victory & Praise Christian Academy (Crosby, TX)

October 17 @ 1:00 PM – King’s Academy (Tyler, Texas)

October 23 @ 7:00 PM – Allen Academy (Bryan, Texas)

October 30 @ 7:30 PM – @ Gospel Lighthouse Christian (Lockhart, TX)

November 6 @ 7:30 PM – @ Bastrop Tribe Consolidated (Bastrop, TX)

Thursday August, 20, 2015 – The Preacher Comes for Sunday Dinner or Why I Believe God Has a Sense of Humor.

Thursday August, 20, 2015 – The Preacher Comes for Sunday Dinner or Why I Believe God Has a Sense of Humor.

I know there are people who know me and those who read what I write on Here’s What I’m Thinking that question whether I had a church bringing up at all. Especially given some of the topics I write about like yesterday’s post about bikini suit football. I did though.

I grew up in the Magnolia Methodist Church in Magnolia, Texas. I do not have many memories prior to about age three. I do have some memories of stories I have heard about me growing up in the Magnolia Methodist Church prior to age three. For example, Mama, yanking me out of the aisle and “whispering” “STOP dancing to the church hymns!” Or stories of me playing with and then putting Mama’s jewelry in the collection plate. And my favorite – Mama carried me, a book, some crackers and a switch to church. If I did not read the book and talked, she popped me with the switch and shoved the cracker in my mouth.

But one year when I was about six years old “The Conference” and if you grew up a Methodist, you know what that means, sent the church a new preacher. His name was David Williamson.

By this time I knew that having the preacher to Sunday dinner was a big deal. It was dinner – right after church. If it were supper, it would have been right before church.

I am not sure which order these should be in, but there were three things that suddenly made Sunday dinners very special.

  • Mama fixed my all time Sunday (still today my favorite meal) of roast, gravy, mashed potatoes, carrots and hot rolls. And of course gallons of ice tea. And you know there was a Nanny Cake (formerly known as a Doy Cake.)
  • The new preacher was about the coolest person I had ever seen and once per month he would come to our house for Sunday dinner.
  • And before we sat down for dinner, I could take off my dress and put on my blue jeans or shorts, depending on the season. I am sure this was a prearranged compromise with Mama to get me into the dress in the first place.

After dinner I was always sent to play. But I would slip back into the living room and sit behind the three-quarter partition and listen to the conversations. Mama, Honeyboy and David would tell stories and laugh. It was the laughter of this man that I remember every time I hear his name – even today. His laugh was as though it came from deep within and it filled the room with joy.

It was booming, rich and hearty. Sometimes he made a whooping kinda sound that became infectious and made you start to laugh too. It just gave you a feel good feeling all over.

So in the logic of the mind of a six year old, I concluded this. If God talks through the preacher, then God must laugh through the preacher too. So that must be the way God sounds when He laughs. And to this day because of David Williamson’s laugh, I believe that God has a sense of humor with a big booming laugh.

Granted it is sometimes difficult to believe given the content I post that there is a Divine inspiration and spiritual purpose in Here’s What I’m Thinking. But remember my daily goal – to make at least one person smile or laugh each day.

Methodist Church 1 (582x800)

Magnolia Methodist Church, Magnolia, Texas circa 1955