The Anniversary Survived

Summer before we did everything we could to try to prevent from flooding again, raising our home paid off.


Hello my friends and thank you for all your concerns. Dale and I are doing good. So much has happen since my last post. The good news is our home did not flood. When I posted my last blog about my flower arrangements, I knew Harvey was coming and did not want to think how it would affect us! I was in denial!

Last summer after our home flooded we spent most of our time and money preparing for the foundation for our new home. Cutting down shrubs and trees. In edition we did everything by the book, inspections upon inspections, building permit and hauling dirt. Most importantly installing a concrete foundation.

Clayton homes installers made sure to raise our home as high as they could possibly go, which was 2 1/2 feet higher then our last home. Now all this would be put to the test! Unbelievable!

When I first heard about the tropical storm on Tuesday August 22, I decided that day to stock up on water, can goods and non perishables. While at the store I notice plenty of water and no one at the time seemed to be concerned. I think by Wednesday it sunk in that Harvey could be serious. For a while we did not know where Harvey was going to land. ?? The news forecast that Harvey would bring 20 to 30 inches of rain! Dale knew we needed to be concerned about the River.

To be prepared we both packed our bags, incase we had to evacuate. Sunday August 27, 5:30 in the morning we received a phone call from a neighbor that our creek was filling up with water, which is the day we evacuated. Before we left our home Dale moved both of our lawn mowers up onto the back deck. We turned our main power off and emptied our refrigerator. Earlier, Dale made a high shelf in his workshop to put all his tools up.

Dale made sure when we had the deck installed the ramp was wide enough to drive the riding lawnmower up the deck.

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All I can say is the rain that was pouring down was constant for days. We stayed with some friends and we were all glued to the news. Seeing many having to evacuate their homes. So many hero’s coming out! People helping people. By the time it was over according to our friends rain gauge, we received 32 inches of rain.

Between Sunday and Monday the Brazos River went over it’s banks and flooded our neighborhood. The river rose 36 feet. Five feet of water surrounded our home. We did not know if our home had flooded at the time until my husband received a picture from one of our neighbors, he was able to go into the subdivision with his Jet Ski and he took pictures of everyone’s homes.

We received this picture from a friend who was able to go in with his jet ski. He took pictures of all the homes in our neighborhood.

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We returned home on Saturday, Sept. 2nd. Most of our neighbor’s homes flooded. It made me sick to see this again. When we finally made it home we immediately notice the water line, we knew our home did not flood. At first we were concerned that maybe the underbelly might have gotten wet, but with further inspection it did not. Summer before we did everything we could to try to prevent from flooding again and raising our home paid off.

Picture taken before the storm.


I am so thankful that I was able to enjoy my garden for the most part of the summer.

Elizabeth’s garden after the flood.

Our week has been busy. We’ve been treating our well water, cleaning my garden shed and pressure washing everything we can little at a time. As much as I hate cleaning river mud off of everything! We got this! So grateful our home did not flood.

Some of our family members did not escape this. My brother who lives near the Brazos River, his home flooded, my uncle’s home flooded. Friend’s and co worker’s homes have flooded. So many affected by Hurricane Harvey! Please continue to pray for Texas.

Pray for Texas

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So thankful for the Red Cross, they have been here daily handing out water and a hot meal.

I personally thanked them and told them I don’t want this to be a yearly thing!

Ha-ha! You just gotta laugh once in a while!

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May 28, 2016 Flood


Our hearts go out to the islands that have been hit by Hurricane Irma and we are praying for Florida.


Flower Arrangements

I purposely planted Zinnias in my garden for cut flowers.

Hello everyone! I hope your ready to see lots of pictures! I wanted to post something fun to show you, I’m not all work and no play! Ha-ha! I LOVE FLOWERS! Who doesn’t! I was going through my picture gallery and realize! Wow! I have made lots of flower arrangements since we moved into our new home! I love both real, dried and faux flowers. Flowers to me can become a focal point, they can brighten up a room and set a mood your trying to create. So enjoy!

Winter Carnations

Dale found these pine branches and ask if I wanted them? I said yes! No cost and from nature.


Carnations are the most inexpensive flowers you can purchase.


Natural Pine Branches


February Valentine’s Day Carnations


Better Homes and Garden Faux Flowers

Flowers from our wedding for table arrangements. Kitchen Island.


Same faux flowers, which adds a nice touch to our vintage dresser and the picture on the wall.


Easter Flower Arrangement


Same Easter arrangement, changed the décor pieces.


Easter Arrangement


Coffee Bar

Cotton Stems


Faux Tulips

Easter Spring Table Arrangements


Faux Blue Hydrangeas

Found these flowers at a thrift store.


April Flower Arrangement


Mother’s Day Flowers

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From my dresser to the kitchen island. I tend to move my flower arrangements around.

Evening shot of our home.

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Dried Pepper Stems

I love these delicate dried pepper stems, displayed in the guest bedroom shelf.


More dried pepper stems in a small crock.

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Summer Flowers

I purposely planted Zinnias in my garden for cut flowers.


Fourth of July Flower Arrangement


Crepe Myrtles

The greenery you see is from a small tree we trimmed. I just could not throw away, so in they went with the crepe myrtles.


Shelf in the guest bedroom. The cake topper you see was a gift from our wedding. It represents summer weddings. The jewelry box was mine when I was a child. Thank you mom so much for holding on to this! The mini lantern belongs to Dale’s grandmother. The vintage recipe box was given to me from my mother. I remember looking inside this box when I was young at the recipes. I was really being nosy!

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Tiny Flowers

This vase is one of my smallest 3 1/2 inches. Good for my tiny zinnias.


Flowers and herbs from my garden.


I always have some kind of flower arrangements displayed somewhere in my home. Cotton stems are now displayed on my gallery wall.

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One morning while in my garden I thought I am going to collect the pink zinnias today! I then displayed them in my tea pot.

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I hope you had fun looking through the pictures of my flower arrangements. I don’t fret to much when making the arrangements. I put the flowers in a vase and move them around a bit and let them be. Sometimes I put a book or a décor piece near, to compliment the arrangement. I believe in keeping it simple.

“Just living is not enough….one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.” – Hans Christian Anderson

Thank you so much for stopping by, till next time!






Front Yard

It’s take-in some time to get the yard to look like this. We started in the Spring and did what we could, little by little, to prep and prepare, now it’s done!

Wow! I can’t believe August is already here! We’ve had some fun times this summer and I hope yours has been fun as well. It’s been really HOT here in Texas and I’m kind of looking forward to some fall weather, so we can hang out on the porch.

Today I am blogging about our front yard. The yard was in pretty bad shape, due to moving our old mobile home out and moving the new home in; plus work vehicles driving through the yard, which made a few ruts. Top of all that! The yard had a lot of weeds and dead spots. Good news! Our Crepe Myrtle’s are having an abundance of blooms this year, like never before.

Dale fix the ruts in the yard by filling them with topsoil. He also added more soil near the sidewalk, driveway and low spots in the yard to level and smooth out. In addition, Dale added crushed concrete to the entry of the driveway to level it out with the cemented driveway.

Another step we did was apply weed and feed to the yard.

Now for the fun part! Yes, there is always the fun part! Ha-ha! It’s the prepping that’s not fun! But must be done! Sod was next! Dale and I put sod down along the front of the house, sidewalk and driveway. We even placed some sod in front of my red fence. The front yard looks absolutely beautiful!

It’s take-in some time to get the yard to look like this. We started in the Spring and did what we could, little by little, to prep and prepare, now it’s done! Yay!

Moving the Bonnell, last summer.


Our new home.

Fall 2016.


 Dale put plastic down to prevent the dirt from run off, during the Fall and Winter months.


Early Spring

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Topsoil has already been applied along the sidewalk.


Topsoil applied along the driveway.

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Getting ready to put down sod.

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Must water for at least 14 days after planting sod.

Crushed concrete installed to the entry of driveway.

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Grass planted along the front sidewalk.

Grass planted along the driveway.

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Grass planted in front of the red fence.

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Front yard.

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Side view.

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View from the left side of property and so happy we are done with the front yard.

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We just recently celebrated our 6th Anniversary and we always make a point to take a portrait every anniversary.

Posing in front of our Texas patio.

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Thank you so much for stopping by the Phillips Place.



Front Porch

Dale uses his utility trailer to carry his tools and supplies for his convenience.

Hello everyone! I hope you are enjoying your summer! Dale and I are having a much better summer this year! Last summer we were recovering from the flood. Not fun at all.

 Summer 2016. Through it all we kept our spirits up.


Well let me tell you about our front porch! Early spring we were ready to give the front porch a finish look by adding lattice to the bottom. But before we could do that Dale needed to address the dirt that was washing out from underneath the porch. He installed 2 x 10’s around the bottom to hold the gravel. Dale used a type of gravel call washout; it is some kind of crushed concrete and fairly inexpensive. He put about a yard of gravel within the border he made and compacted as much as possible. Now for the fun stuff! We choose the smallest square lattice we could find, which I think looks elegant. Once Dale finish applying the lattice, he covered the rough edges using 1 x 4’s. At that point the porch was looking much better, but we noticed when walking up the stairs you could see between the steps and it kind of looked dark and scary underneath. Ha-ha! I believe because our steps are high, it’s very noticeable. To solve the issue Dale installed 2 x 8’s between the steps. No more dark and scary! The benefit to adding the 2 x 8’s gave the steps more support and should keep critters out from underneath the porch. Wow! The porch looks wonderful!

Before Picture

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2 x 10 Frame



Hauling the gravel.

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Washout gravel.


Preparing frame for under the steps.

Frame complete.


Gravel complete.

Dale uses his utility trailer to carry his tools and supplies for his convenience. The trailer is easily moved with the garden tractor to the location where he is working. Can you see his miter saw?

Getting ready to install the lattice.


Lattice installed.

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Front steps completed.

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Right side view from the street.

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Steps 2 x 8’s installed.

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The man of the hour, Mr. Dale Phillips! My husband does wonderful work, as you can see the porch looks awesome!


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Future Plans For The Porch

Paint, stain and add lights to the steps. All in due time. 🙂

Summer Vacation 2017

Bald River Falls in Tennessee

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Cherohala Skyway


Biltmore Estate

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Biltmore Estate rose garden.

Taking the time to smell the roses.

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Enjoying the shade.

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Sunflower Field in Stecoah, NC


We both wish you a happy sunny summer!

The Phillips


Happy Independence Day

Hello and happy fourth of July! I hope you are enjoying your holiday! Dale and I are enjoying some time off from work and projects. Saturday we celebrated at our place with friends and family; we had a Forth of July Concert Jam! We have family members that are musicians and they were excited to come jam together! Wow! What a great way to celebrate! Dale and I love listening to live music and has been a dream for us, having a live band play here at the Phillips Place. We can check that off our bucket list! Ha-ha! Next on our bucket list, movie night! I think that would be great! Will see!

Fourth of July Concert Jam at the Phillips Place

This picture was taken by my daughter Mary Hatton. She took some awesome pictures of our jam! I think she gets her photography from me. Ha-ha! Actually she has exceeded me with her photography! Mary is a blogger too! Check her out! The Cake Chica Thank you Mary!

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Phillips Place Home

This is my dining room wall. I purchased this clock at Hobby Lobby, it was on sale for 50% off. Wonderful! The wall sconces I purchased at an antique shop for under $20.00. My mother gave me the vintage coffee pot and the tea kettle I found at another antique store and scored a great deal on sale! The green pitcher was a gift and the books were purchased at a thrift store. Cotton stems I bought at Magnolia Silos. Of course it took some time to gather all these items. I always look for great deals and through patience’s can somehow put things together.

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 For summer I wanted to change this part of my kitchen, so I placed my small collection of these beautiful crocks. I always put a picture above my stove but did not have anything that went well with my décor. I took care of that by painting an abstract art piece, using similar colors of my crocks. My abstract art I’ve named, “Sand & Water.” This was my small DIY project and had fun painting it!

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Fourth of July Home decor.

This is my fourth of July home decorating. I cut some fresh flowers from my garden and put them in a small vase and placed them on top of a red white and blue runner. That’s it! I really don’t go all out, I think a little goes a long way.

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Outdoor, Red, White and Blue

I kept it simple even outdoors. I found this star garland at Target, in the dollar section and placed it on my vintage window on my porch.

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My garden shed vintage window I purchased the red, white and blue flower bouquet at Wal-Mart for under $10.00 and the garland at Target in the dollar section.

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Have a Happy Fourth of July and wishing you all a wonderful summer!

Dale & Elizabeth Phillips


Queen E’s Garden

Last December on a warm day, I took advantage and cleaned up the garden area. I pressure wash the garden shed and the raised beds, finally getting the last of the dirt left from the flood. I also cleaned all my potting pots, tilled the raised beds and filled the beds with compost.


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Early Spring

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This is actually my second year gardening, so definitely a novice. I have three 4 x 8’s raised beds and kept it simple by planting what we like in salads. Cucumbers and tomatoes! Dale added a trellis for the cucumber vines using PVC pipe, which has been a nice addition to the garden. I use pots for my tomato plants and herbs. Sweet mint for ice tea! Basil for pizza! Yum! I planted green beans for the first time and also planted some dill from seed, experimenting!

Before Trellis

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PVC Pipe Trellis

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Pickling Cucumbers


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Cherry Tomatoes Early Spring




Fresh From The Garden

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This year I devoted one of the raised beds for flowers. I planted from seed, Zinnia’s and they are starting to fill the garden with beautiful colors! I love plants and flowers and have placed them in potted pots all around the area.

Flower Bed

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Cut Flowers From The Garden

Zinnia’s & Basil

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I am enjoying my garden very much! We have had enough cucumbers for salads and extra to give to our neighbors. I planted two types of cherry tomatoes and they are delicious! Next year I would like to try to add more vegetables to the garden but for now keeping it small.


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Basil & Marigolds

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Fresh Basil



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Porch Plants

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My garden shed I like to decorate along with the seasons. For spring I hung up a painted floral picture, added some spring flowers to the window box and a wreath for the door. Dale and I agree that the garden area is our special feature here at the Phillips Place. The last family gathering here, everyone loved the garden shed! It gave me a big smile seeing them pose in front of the shed for their pictures.


Garden Shed

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Spring Wreath



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Queen E’s Garden

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How I came up with the title “Queen E’s Garden,” one of my neighbors gave me the nick name “Queen E,” he has since moved because of the flood, but when we do talk or see each other, he always addressees me with Queen E!  I dedicate this blog to Mark McKinney, we miss you! We will never forget the good conversations we’ve had on the porch and really miss your cooking!

You will forever and always be our friend, Dale & Elizabeth Phillips



Texas Patio

Dale and I have been busy as bees here at the Phillips Place spending our spring time getting our yard ready for summer!

I’m excited about our new red fence next to the stone patio! But let me tell you about the patio first. The area next to the garden shed had a low spot that collected rain water. I came up with the idea to build the area up by installing a stone patio. Last fall we had sand brought in, to spread in the backyard and ended up with more than we needed. So we used some of the sand to build up the area for the stone patio. We didn’t get technical about it. Dale made a frame using some landscape timbers we had on hand. He shoveled the extra sand to the area and we pounded the sand using our body weight by stepping and jumping on the sand. Yeah! I know we must’ve looked a little crazy, plus we don’t have a lot of body weight, so if the patio falls apart later you know why! Ha-ha! We finished the patio all in a days work. Not bad huh! Dale later installed a stone sidewalk next to the garden an unexpected surprise!

Before Picture

We removed shrubs for the fence.


To make the frame square we had to cut part of this tree. We plan to cut this tree down in the fall. Landscape timbers for the frame.


Filling with sand.


The first and the last stone laid

After we squared the patio we were left with a small odd shape area by the patio. Dale concrete that spot.


Made sure to put our initials and date.

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 Dale used treated 1 x 4’s to make the form for the stone sidewalk.

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After picture of sidewalk.

Fresh dirt under the shrubs.

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Red Fence

I’ve always wanted a picket fence next to the garden shed and trying to come up with an idea on how to make that happen. We previously had a fence in our backyard hiding our propane tank. After the flood we had the propane tank removed and Dale suggested we should reuse the fence for the patio area. A good idea because all we needed was to purchase concrete and a couple of 2 x 4’s for the project. Dale shorten the fence by cutting a foot off the height so that we would have a view of the front yard. It’s not exactly a picket fence but it is a fence and it works for me.

Setting the post for the fence.

Cutting the fence for the desired height.

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One side installed.

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Painted the fence to match the red gate.

Color is Red Geranium by Glidden Wal-Mart.

After Picture

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I love our patio! It’s a nice peaceful spot to sit and have a glass of iced tea or a cup of coffee. I also appreciate our new stone sidewalk a much stable walkway and makes it easier to get to and from the garden shed. The cherry on top! Is the red fence! It really stands out! I can imagine some good times will be spent here in this beautiful Texas patio.

Our Texas Patio

After Pictures.

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The Hearts of Texas.

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I hope you enjoyed reading about our Texas Patio as much as I’ve enjoyed telling you about our outdoor project.

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