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Gulf Coast Ladies Retreat–Part 5

Elegant Servers, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

Scrumptious, nourishing spiritual food was dished up by the speakers of the retreat, including Nita Hodges, Ann Jackson and Brenda Groce. The music led by DeDe Cooley was superb, and the worship was sincere and beautiful.

There was other food also, including Saturday’s lunch when the men barbecued brisket, sausage and chicken, then served in the excellent way you see here…then… did all the clean-up! It was fabulous.

On Friday, Jerry joined 7 or 8 (edit: Jerry corrected me telling me there were 16) other men who went to a restaurant that specializes in serving crawfish, and where 100 pounds of the critters had been ordered for those men to eat. Unbelievable. The red creatures were served in pans that held 10 pounds each, along with boiled corn and potatoes. Jerry took my camera, but his pictures were blurred, so I can’t show you.

I can show you these. Left over from the 100 pounds, a few pounds were taken back to the house where Nita Hodges and Sister Marshall attacked them with gusto. Take a look.

Let me remind you that lovely women who just a while before the moment that I snapped these pictures, were beautifully dressed, and leading in worship at the retreat, are now digging into these mounds of red creatures, and that these crawfish are sprawled out on a dining table of the elegant house I have showed you.
Yep, that’s newspaper you see. That’s how they do it in this part of the country. They spread their beautiful tables with newspaper, sit before these mounds of boiled, clawed creatures, reach in their carefully manicured hands, pull off legs or something, squeeze out the tasty meat, put the refuge aside, and reach for another. In between the biting of the meaty morsels, they gnaw on yellow cobs of corn and wash it down with sweet tea.
Now, believe me, I’m not trying to sound superior or anything like that, but some of you may recall that I had a frightening reaction to eating crab a few months ago, and while crawfish is quite different, I was afraid to chance it. Otherwise, I would have been in there with the best of them, tearing apart those claws, and squeezing out the delectable meat.
My devotional blog is here.
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Gulfcoast Ladies Retreat–Part 2

Southwest in clouds, originally uploaded by Shirley Buxton.

After a rather bumpy, three-hour flight from Houston, a short time ago Jerry and I landed in Phoenix and are waiting for a few minutes to pass which will bring us to the last leg of this great trip. At 11:15 we board another plane for a short hop to Las Vegas, where we will pick up our car and drive the 2 and 1/2 hours to Lake Havasu.

Success! Our book suitcase is empty…well, it’s empty of books…well, it’s empty of my books…but loaded with gifts, including other books. I’ll write more of those later, for I want to show you pictures of one particular item. Our books sales were tremendous at the conference–we sold all we took, and I have orders from ten other people, whose books I will try to ship tomorrow.

The highlight of this conference for me was meeting this delightful couple, Pastor and Mrs. Tom Jackson. She hosted the ladies conference that was sponsored by their church, and Jerry and I stayed in their home. Jerry mentioned as he spoke at the service last night that he feels cheated. Why? Because for all these years, we have not known these exceptional people. Our few days with them was perfect in every way, and I truly believe we have begun a friendship that will last and be a close one for the rest of our lives. Isn’t that the neatest thing…that throughout our lifetimes, at different stages of our lives, we can develop new and enduring relationships. Such is the case, I believe, with Tom and Ann Jackson and Jerry and Shirley Buxton.

Their church seats nearly 500 people and this beautiful stained glass window forms the rear wall of the platform area.


My devotional blog is here.

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Gallopping Gratuities

Hey, are any of my friends from Texas reading this?

We’re leaving Lake Havasu before 5:00 tomorrow morning, driving to Las Vegas, then boarding a plane, changing in Albuquerque and winding up in Houston Hobby at 4:30 in the afternoon. Today, I’ve been straightening things around this cluttered motor home, repacking my luggage, watching Jerry deal with his and tucking my speaking notes safely into my computer case. A few minutes ago I sat down to take a short break, and one of the first news items I saw was this startling story: A waitress in TEXAS receives a horse for a tip!

A horse?


“Galloping gratuities,” someone said.

Are they all over the place in Texas handing out horses? Will Jerry and I come home mounted on beautiful steeds, instead of flapping our wings on Southwest? Rather doubt it! Anyway, I thought you needed to hear this delightful story.

By Allan Turner of the Houston Chronicle:

Maybe it was his eyes — deep liquid pools of the inkiest black. Maybe it was his size — towering over his Lilliputian handlers with benign majesty. Maybe it was his breath — voluminous clouds of exhalation sweetly redolent of hay.

Whatever it was, Mailman Express had plenty of it. He was one hunk of horse, and A.D. Carrol loved him for it.

“He’s gorgeous,” Carrol, a diminutive 71-year-old Sugar Land woman, crooned into Mailman’s perked-up ear. Then, turning to her human companions, she added in an undertone, “I told him how beautiful he is. I think he remembers me.”

That was the touching scene Tuesday at the Houston Polo Club as Carrol, on her way to her waitress job at Ouisie’s Table, stopped by to say hello to the thoroughbred bay gelding she received as an eye-popping tip.

“All this started about a week and a half ago when I was waiting tables,” Carrol said. “There were two men drinking coffee and I had to ask them to move to make way for a larger group. One of the men just asked me if I wanted a horse. I said, ‘sure.’ Two days later he came back with the trainer’s phone number and Mailman was mine.”

A short video of the horse and the remainder of the article is here.


My devotional blog is here.