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Friday, March 05, 2010

It's Rodeo Time in Houston!

One of the things I missed most while we were in Singapore was the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. I've been a show member and committee volunteer for about 17 years. I have always enjoyed volunteering and being a volunteer for the Houston Rodeo is very rewarding. The Rodeo gives away scholarships to Texas High School students. Their website says that since they started in 1957, more than $250 million dollars has been committed to Texas students for their education. Not only does the Rodeo help students it also has a big economical impact for the city of Houston. Being a committee member has it's perks too. We get gold badges that allow us entrance for ourselves and one guest into the rodeo grounds and inside Reliant stadium to watch the rodeo and the entertainers, plus we get a parking pass. The parking pass doesn't promise there will be a place to park though. Some days parking can be really scarce. As a committee member, I put in a lot of hours during the rodeo. And some nights when it's cold and raining and I have to walk 10-15 minutes to Reliant Center from my car, it can be a quite miserable. But, once you get inside and experience all the sights, sounds and smells that are all part of Rodeo you forget the crappy weather outside. And to see all the great kids who have worked so hard on their animal projects make it all worth it! So, if you are in Houston the first three weeks of March you should make plans to attend the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. You will be amazed and leave with some great memories.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Not like I need another thing to do...but

I truly miss updating this blog and miss reading everyone else's posts even more. Family is all back in Texas now - well except for daughter no. 1 who is now in Arkansas. I'm going to have to change the banner title though as that one doesn't work any more. We've been back for about a year and a half now and are getting settled into a routine I guess. Daughter no. 2 is in high school at the same school I graduated from years not that long ago. She made varsity cheerleader and knowing how big high school football is in Texas, she's loving it. That's one thing she missed when we were in Singapore. Hubbie and I carpool to work everyday. Most people can't believe we make the commute that we do, but to be able to live in the country and not be all bunched up in a subdivision - it's worth it.

I tell people that we are "homeless" right now. That's because we sold our house in Katy, TX before we moved to Singapore. So, right now we are renting a small house and are in the beginning stages of building a house on two acres we bought a while back. I hope the shape of the economy and the banking industry doesn't screw things up for us. We actually met the builder at our lot over the weekend and put stakes out for the four corners of the house and where the driveway will be!
I think the new house will at least be an inspiration for some frequent posts. The people in Singapore were definitely a source of amazement and amusement. I truly always had something that surprised me to write about. Not quite the same here in SE Texas!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Back in TeXaS!

Hey Ya'll!!!

Sorry...Long time no post. I'm sure I've missed reading y'alls posts more than you've missed mine. So much has happened since I last posted. We went home for daughter no. 1's graduation and while I was there I had a follow up interview for a job at another company. After a lot of careful thought and discussion with hubbie I took the job. Bid decision for me. I've been at the same company for 14 years. The new job offers me advancement possibilities and a great salary and benefits. Bigger part of the decision was the fact that hubbie is still in Singapore. It's tough but hopefully time will go by fast. The plan is to build a house. We bought two acres of land in a beautiful acreage-type subdivision. The land is already cleared with huge oak trees. It will be beautiful. Once we decide on a floor plan we will get started.

While Singapore definately supplied me with endless topics for posts here, I REALLY missed Texas and am SO glad to be home (all except the hubbie not being here part). Now I will have to find other ways to keep y'all entertained. Hubbie volunteered to keep posting about Singapore but I just don't know if he will have time. We'll see how it goes.

My next objective is going to be finding a car that gets better gas mileage than my little Tacoma. It only gets about 16 mpg so now that I have to pay for gas I don't think 16mpg is going to cut it. However I am so glad to be able to park at a store without having to pay to park and drive around a parking garage for 15minutes looking for a parking spot. Then having to go to several malls / stores to find everything you are looking for. I know there are people out there that hate Wal-Mart, but try living in a place where you have to go to one store for your groceries, a D.I.Y. store for any type of hardware items, a stationary store or the post office for a notepad or spiral note book, a larger market (Target or Wal-Mart wanna-be) for simple housewares, etc. You would start to pray for a Wal-Mart!

Although there are some things Singapore definitely does right: ZERO tolerance for drugs (death penalty), tough on other crimes as well, and the yellow stripes on the roads that allow for an opening in traffic for cars to enter the roadway, I can tell you for certain - There is no place like the USA ~ we have it made! Just like Dorothy says, "There's no place like home."

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Car Toys

Well, I haven't posted any new Car Toy photos in a while so here's a couple of new ones. If there are any Singaporean readers out there can you please explain why this is such a big deal here? I think I will try to make this a regular weekly post

And then there was this one below. See all the Hello Kitty stuff....it was a guy's car:

Monday, June 02, 2008

It's been crazy!

Sorry for the lack of posting this month. After going home for daughther no. 1's graduation and coming back nothing has been the same. I am now on a new project in a different shipyard so hubbie and I can't eat lunch together everyday, and what sucks even worse is that there isn't a Subway anywhere near here! The project that we are sharing office space with brings in luch three days a week but it's all local food and not the least bit healthy. Just about all of it is fried. Being at this other yard does have one advantages: the traffic is MUCH lighter both ways.

We started having AC problems before we went home to Texas for a week. So when we got back first thing we called and had the AC service people come out. They said the unit needed to be replaced. The AC here is different then back home. Each room has it's own unit mounted on the wall and the compressor is outside. Some rooms share a compressor. I really don't know the least bit about how an air conditioning system works and the ones here are even more confusing than our central air back home. The owner of our unit wanted to get the guys he uses to come out and look and they told him the same thing. Keep in mind that each time someone comes out we have to be there too and they don't come in the evening after we get off work. So, Saturday the AC guys come out to replace the AC in the dining and living areas. We have to move all the furniture and roll up all the carpets so they are not in the way. Needless to say, here it is Monday and there is work that still needs to be done and it all needs to be completed before Thursday when hubbies youngest sister arrives to visit us for two weeks. I spent all weekend looking for information that the tax preparer needs to do our income tax returns. In doing so I realized that I am not as organized as I thought I was. I went through every file folder looking for tax receipts for our house we sold back in Texas, stock information, travel information so we know when we were out of the US, etc. I found most of it. If it weren't for having to do all that fun tax stuff I would have been blogging and reading all your great posts. I hope I don't become like my mom with this tax crap. I remember year after year she had to put off doing stuff she wanted to do because it seems she was continuously getting stuff together for their taxes.

In our spare time we are also out looking at other condos. Our lease comes up in August and the owners wanted to know by the end of May if we were staying or not. He wants to raise our rent from SGD$5200 to SGD$8200 a month. We think he's crazy. There has been a definite rise in rent around here but most units in our complex are in the $5000's. We really like where we are and would like to stay but if we can find something new, without all these issues, then perhaps we will consider moving. Luckily with all that has been going on he gave us some more time to decide.

Other updates: daughter no. 1 is now in her new apartment in Arkansas thanks to my parents, brother, and her friend that helped her pack and move all her stuff up there. She starts her new job on the 9th. Daughter no. 2 is taking her last finals and her last day of school is on Thursday.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Good Engrish

Hubbie sent me all these sign pictures. Being here we can really relate. Can only imagine what kind of signs people will see when they go to Beijing for the Olympics in August.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

We're Baaaack!

Well we just made it back from our quick trip back to Texas for no. 1 daughter's graduation. We got there on a Thursday and left the following Thursday. We were definitely on the BNE as my brother calls it: "The Butt Numb Express". It is such a LONG flight, especially when you fly economy class. But it was all worth it to see our daughter graduate from Texas A&M! Whoop! There were no flight delays or trouble of that nature so you missed seeing me in the news: "Crazy Mother goes postal in airport". The day after her graduatiuon we had a typical Texas Backyard BBQ with all our close friends and family. The weather was great and so was the BBQ. We had it catered by a place in Huntsville called McKinzie's. It was really good so I recommend them if you are in the area. I really wanted to post to my blog while we were gone however we stayed with my in-laws in Midway, TX and they are on a dial-up connection so I didn't mess with it. We were too busy visiting and having a great time anyway. More than anything I wanted to catch up on all the other bl*gs out there I like to read. (see my list to the left)

Here is some Texas humor for you to enjoy:
After having dug to a depth of 10 yards last year, New York scientists found traces of copper wire dating back100 years and came to the conclusion, that their ancestors already had a telephone network more than100 years ago.
Not to be outdone by the New Yorkers, in the weeks that followed, California scientists dug to a depth of 20 yards, and shortly after, headlines in the LA Times newspaper read: 'California archaeologists have found traces of 200 year old copper wire and have concluded that their ancestors already had an advanced high-tech communications network a hundred years earlier than the New Yorkers.'
One week later, The El Campo Times, a local newspaper just outside of Houston, Texas, reported the following: After digging as deep as 30 yards in cotton fields near Hillje in Wharton County, Texas, Bubba Johnson, a self-taught archaeologist, reported that he found absolutely nothing. Bubba has therefore concluded that 300 years ago, Texas had already gone wireless.' (Too bad that wasn't in Midway, TX - LOL!)