Spring in Texas Hill Country
Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful; beauty is
God's handwriting -- a wayside sacrament.  -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
~ ~ ~
Pay no attention to what the critics say; no statue
has ever been erected to a critic.  -- Jean Sibelius
I'll paint you a rainbow to hang on the wall
To brighten your heart when the gray shadows fall.
On a canvas of joy outlasting the years,
With a soft brush of sweetness to dry all your tears.
I'll paint you a rainbow so deep and so wide
Your sighs and your sorrows will vanish inside.
On a palette of words, I will tenderly blend
Tones into treasures of sunlight and wind.
-- Grace Easley
Indian Blankets (pictured above) were my dad's favorite Texas
wildflower.  Every time he visited his native Texas, he'd come back to
New Orleans with boxes of seeds and young plants plucked from the
hillsides.  He gave them to so many people over the years - friends,
neighbors, co-workers, I wouldn't be surprised if some of my dad's
Indian Blankets survive to this day in gardens throughout the city.
Many people believe that the name "bluebonnet" came into being because
the shape of the petals resembled the bonnets worn by pioneer women, but
the name is probably Scottish in origin, from the term "bluebonnet" which
was used for the traditional blue version of the Tam O'Shanter hat.
The alternative to despair is courage and life can be viewed as a
continuous struggle between the two.  Courage is the capacity to affirm
one's life in spite of the elements which threaten it.  The fact that
courage usually predominates over despair in itself tells us that the
forces that affirm life are stronger than those that negate it.  -- Paul
~ ~ ~
Don't wish me happiness.  Wish me what I really need...courage
and strength and a sense of humor.  -- Anne Morrow Lindbergh
In 1982, former first lady Lady
Bird Johnson founded the National
Wildflower Research Center, an
environmental organization
dedicated to the preservation of
native plants in natural
landscapes. In 1997, in honor of
Mrs. Johnson's 85th birthday,
the center was renamed the Lady
Bird Johnson Research Center.
Mrs. Johnson was chairman of
the center's board of directors
until her death in 2007.
Pres. Gerald Ford awarded Lady
Bird Johnson the Presidential
Medal of Freedom, the citation
read:  "One of America's great
First Ladies, she claimed her own
place in the hearts and history of
the American people.  In councils
of power or in the homes of the
poor, she made government human
with her compassion, grace,
warmth and wisdom. She
transformed the American
landscape and preserved its
natural beauty as a national
Mrs. Johnson in Texas hill
country, surrounded by
her beloved wildflowers.
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Friday's Journal
A Texas longhorn grazes in a field of bluebonnets.
A calf grazes in a field of Texas wildflowers.