Sights to See in the Big D- SOLC #27/31

As a long-time resident of Dallas, Texas, I thought it would be fun to share a few places you might like to visit if you are in the neighborhood.

If you are a sports fan, the obvious choice would be to visit AT&T Stadium, home of the national favorite ūüôā Dallas Cowboys. ¬†You can either take the group, self-guided tour, where you can not only hear fun facts about the team but also toss a football across the field. ¬†The VIP tour takes you deeper into the facility, guiding you through the behind-the-scenes secrets of the stadium. ¬†This is definitely worth the time for the football fanatic.

Across town is the unique¬†Dallas Arboretum, a garden that can take your breath away. ¬†From the multiple reflection ponds that make you feel like you’re walking into White Rock Lake to the whimsical floral topiaries that dot the garden, there is something interesting for everyone. ¬†Brides can be seen posing for their portraits, and children enjoy activities planned just for them. ¬†In the summer, Thursday nights bring live music patrons enjoy while nibbling on snacks or sipping choice beverages. ¬† For the flower lover, the variety is breathtaking; for those who just want to get away from the busyness of life, nothing beats it.

For shopping fans, there is a mall with you name on it!  The famous Galleria, known for its upper-end shops and impressive decor is the place most people start with.  North Park Mall has grown in stature, complete with a movie theater, interesting statues, and exclusive boutiques.  Even their food court offers a more sophisticated menu.  For those on a budget, Sam Moon would be the place for you.  If it is an accessory, you can find it there.  Purses, necklaces, tiaras, headbands, and suitcase are only a few of the items for sale at extremely discounted prices.  Plan to spend a couple hours there to give you plenty of time for exploring your options.

The artists should visit the Dallas Museum; the musician shouldn’t miss Deep Ellum. ¬†The Ross Perot Museum offers the perfect place for the kids to explore all things science, including what it feels like to be in an earthquake and if they can run faster than a cheetah. ¬†Again, set aside lots of time, so that the family can explore all three floors of fun. ¬†More for the older set, the George Bush Museum on the SMU campus reminds us of the days our former president led our nation, with details that allow us to see things through his eyes. ¬†It’s a fascinating look at our recent history.

If I were to try to talk about food, there is no way I could begin to touch the multitude of  choices you have here.  But know that if you crave it, you can find it.

So there you have brief teaser of things you might find interesting as you visit big D, little a, double l, a, s!


Slice of Wood Challenge- SOLC #26/31

Today my husband attempted to trim the trees. ¬†This doesn’t sound like that big of deal, but our backyard has degenerated into a jungle, complete with hanging vines and twinkle lights. ¬†I know some gardens go for the rustic, naturey look, but we have gone too far with this concept. ¬†As I look out our wall of windows, I see shades of green juxtaposed with the browns of dead branches, crumbling fence, and newly-repaired wooden deck. ¬†The lonely fire pit relaxes in the corner, dormant since the warm winter robbed it of its stage. ¬†Dead branches, the only remains of a row of shrubs, outline the wooden seating. ¬†I try to ignore the red solo cups that escaped the clean-up process.

Back to the trimming. ¬†Thanks to a chain replacement on a retired saw, hubby was able to begin with the smaller branches overhanging the deck and end with miniature trunk-like chunks. ¬†Safely removing these sections¬†of tree extensions required analysis of the highest order. ¬†Success would mean sky revealed and trees released of their extra pounds. ¬†Failure could mean anything from partially cut branches, evidence of hacking not quite completed. ¬†Or it could mean a fall, or worse. ¬†Whether successful or not,¬†his muscles will no doubt punish him for today’s exertion. ¬†Bye-bye dead wood.

Saturday Night with Columbo- SOLC #25/31

It was a thrilling Saturday night at the McBroom home. ¬†Hubby and I snuggled up to watch yet another episode of Columbo. ¬†Why is that that we continue to return to this nostalgic favorite? ¬†In response to that question, I present to you…

Five Lessons I’ve Learned from Columbo

  1. Looks are deceiving.  Columbo comes off as a bumbling mess. He acts forgetful, seems to never understand what is being told to him, and his clothes are a mess.  Yet underneath that unassuming facade is a detective with a brilliant mind.  Similarly, Columbo was deceptive.  I wager that he planned every detail of his investigations for the greatest effect.
  2. Details are important. ¬†There’s always that small detail, revealed in the last 10 minutes, that brings all the pieces of the puzzle together. ¬†Something is out of place; someone does something out of character; events seem too coincidental. ¬†No detail is minor in his eyes.
  3. Persistence pays off. ¬†Even when there seems to be no possible way that the suspect can be guilty or when Columbo knows he’s guilty but can’t find just the right evidence to prove it, he keeps on pressing, confident in his conclusion.
  4. Pride goeth before the fall- Columbo plays the foil to the always-arrogant villians with his humble presence.  Almost self-deprecating, he displays respect for everyone, even when he is sure of their guilt.
  5. Success means taking it slowly.- ¬†The pace of the show reflects the idea that it’s all about the story, not dependent on fast-paced action scenes or bombs exploding. ¬†His deliberate questioning and processing of information leads the audience to solve the crime with him. ¬†But, of course, he gets it just a bit before we do.

These observations are not earth-shaking; maybe¬†that’s partly why ¬†Columbo has remained popular for so long. ¬†The things we learn are simple and predictable, and yet somehow we come back for more. ¬†Especially on a Saturday night.

just tired- SOLC #24/31

Sometimes, I’m just tired. ¬†The days are long and full. ¬†The nights are restless with not much sleep. ¬†The week¬†is filled with meetings, errands, mind work, communicating. ¬†And sometimes, I’m just tired. ¬†I don’t care about exercising or cooking or reading, or even music. I don’t care about movies or Bible study or visiting with friends. ¬†Sometimes, I’m just tired. ¬†Today.

Sights of Spring in Texas

Yellow-topped cars covered in pollen from the waving tree branches

White-tipped bluebonnets poking through the emerald green sheaths of grass

Well-used handkerchiefs stuffed into pockets of hay fever victims

Orange-tinged sunrises a greeting me a bit later than last week

Badly-timed crossings made by unlucky squirrels

Scantily clad runners bobbing down the dusty path

Weary-eyed teachers nodding resolutely as test time approaches

Curious-minded seniors counting down the days until graduation

Bright-colored pedicures flashing emerging toes

Frost-coated cups of beverages refreshing thirsty patrons

Mindfully-displayed crosses announcing the death and life of a Savior



I Ate Twins for Breakfast- SOLC #22/31

I ate twins for breakfast.

This isn’t a play on words. ¬†I really ate twins for breakfast.

Every morning I enjoy a breakfast sandwich,

Complete with Canadian bacon, cheddar cheese, sourdough bread, and today…


I was quite taken aback when I cracked my egg into the tiny pan.

Two yolks instead of one.

I was eating two embryos instead of one.

For some reason, I had a hard time completing my routine,

Picturing two identical baby sister chicks pecking around for seed.

Had I not been running late, I probably would’ve scrapped it and eaten

Something else.

When I told my husband, he grimaced too.

Why did eating twins bother us, when eating a single yolk not warrant a second thought?

I ate it anyway.

And it was delicious.


Kids as Inspiration- SOLC- #21/31

I am so loving this challenge.

I mentioned in an earlier post that as¬†an Instructional Coach, I don’t have my own class, so I borrowed a class to share the challenge with me. ¬†They are a veritable mixture of intellect, nationalities, personalities, and commitment to the daily writing. ¬†Reading their ¬†blogs not only entertains me, but it serves as inspiration for things that I can write about too. ¬†I often don’t understand what games they refer to or movies they review. ¬†Despite my “old person ignorance”, I CAN relate to many of their experiences and responses to these challenges or celebrations.

Commenting and receiving comments is my favorite part. ¬†I love being able to mention encounters or feelings that we share; I always comment with my similar story if possible. ¬†And they do the same! ¬†Yesterday, I vented about political stuff. ¬†One sweet girl’s response was, “Sometimes it’s good to let it all out.” ¬†Indeed! ¬†The cool thing is, she was the inspiration for this particular post, because she had written a venting piece the day before. ¬†She gave me permission to do the same. ¬†Similarly, one student listed his 5 favorite area restaurants, complete with a tantalizing description of what fares they offered. ¬†Don’t be surprised if you see a post of my favorites soon.

And some posts are just delightfully written, fraught with soft detail, as well as bold descriptions.  These young writers love tinkering with their word choice.  Liked any writer, sometimes it works; sometimes it will work next time.  But seeing them playing with their language, making sure it reflects their thoughts precisely, brings joy to this teacher heart.  Their teacher (remember, not me) does such a wonderful job of giving them plenty of student choice on their posts, allowing them to explore sometimes the most mundane life moments and bring them to life through words.  Her daily commitment to reading them and commenting highlights her willingness to give of herself, so they can get this writing experience.

Of course, to be honest, some of the students are not enjoying this challenge. ¬†To them, this is something to check off; they would rather not write about a slice of their lives. ¬†And that’s OK too. ¬†Hopefully by the end of the month, these teens will look back and find at least one post they produced that they are proud of, or read several that they enjoyed, or got to know a person in the class or across the country a little better.

We can inspire each other, and do so daily.