October 30, 2012

Possible humor in North Texas street signs?

I know it's a bit blurry, I was blowing through the intersection at 6:40 one morning, but is it just me or is there like this crazy hilariousness in the names of these two road signs in small town, North Texas, USA?

I mean, it's a small college town and well, at college we all know what happens... uhhh, well, I'll just be quiet and let all ya'll talk this over.

Click on the pic and let me know what you see that's funny, if anything at all!!

The Impulsive Texan...keep it Texas, Ya'll...

"I may not get much done, but I sure am slow"...

October 24, 2012

Texas (Cattle) Royalty

Each year, my hunting partner, best friend and wife, Terri and I head to Decatur, Texas to the LBJ National Grasslands to see if we can get a rare glimpse of and even more rare, a shot off at the mysterious and sneaky Whitetail Deer. While we're not in the stand, we make our way into town to grab a bite to eat, fill up with gas or donate our hard-earned money to the local Walmart.

This past weekend, we were in downtown Decatur running around with errands to complete when up on a hill, behind the Baymont Hotel we were staying in was a building that resembled a castle. I pointed it out to Terri and she excitedly said "Let's go see it!". So we head out toward the structure, not knowing how to get there, but we weaved our way in and out of streets north of town until we were at the intersection where the building stood stately above the Decatur skyline.

We drove up to the property and surprisingly it was in fairly good shape. The grounds were freshly mowed, fresh cut tree limbs were in front of the property and a lone worker was trying to get a piece of equipment running in close proximity to the entry gate stately marked "El Castile". We got out and shot a few pictures of the property from the angles we could get to while adhering to the signs that said "Private Property, keep out" every 15' feet on the fence that surrounded the property.

We spent about 10 - 15 minutes there taking pictures and admiring details of the structure that are rarely seen in Texas, much less the United States. After our weekend in Decatur was over and we returned back to Cleburne, I spent a little time researching the building and came across some very interesting information.

"El Castile" or "The Castle" was built in 1883 by cattle baron Dan Waggoner and was once headquarters to the vast Waggoner ranching empire in North Texas. The house boasts 16 rooms and a full basement with 8 wood-burning fireplaces. It is constructed of fossibiferous limestone decorated with hand hewn wrought iron on the roof and balconies. The entrance hall has a grand staircase winding to the second floor with Texas star motifs decorating the walnut & oak stairway and other woodwork throughout the house. Massive interior doors stand 16 feet tall, 3 have stained glass. The Victorian library that displays wrought iron is in glass fixtures from Denver.

The house has a large dining room, 8 bedrooms, 5 marble baths and a huge kitchen with a copper sink and fixtures. The house was the model for the home in the movie "Giant". The home Thistle Hill in Fort Worth was a wedding present to Dan's Daughter Electra in 1902. El Castile was purchased by Phil Luker Sr. in 1944 and remains in the Luker family to this day. It is privately owned and not available for public viewing.

But, if you want to see a building that was built for "Texas Royalty", albeit from the outside only, take a trip up to Decatur, locate the square and drive straight north on East Main about five or six blocks and take the time to look at this timeless structure. I'm glad we did, because honestly, I didn't know anything about El Castile until this past weekend.

There are outstanding architectural structures all over Texas and El Castile is only one. I hope you get the time to visit this place. I don't think you'll be sorry.

Forever Texas...

The Impulsive Texan

"I may not get much done, but I sure am slow"...

October 19, 2012

Pecan Pie and yard sales...as Texas as it gets...

My wife absolutely loves yard sales as a lot of women do. Yesterday, our neighbor directly across the street was holding a very large yard sale. So my wife, not ever one to pass up a bargain OR a yard sale, mosied on over for a visit.
Of course, she stayed there for hours and had to to make three or four trips back and forth across the street to our house to bring home all of the "bargains" that she found.
Well, one of the bargains was marked $.25. It was an old, weathered grass-green pocket folder, you know the type the kids use in school? It has the wire brads in the center flaps to hold papers and of course a pocket on each side.
In this folder are several dozen, hand-typed recipes from the early 1960's as far as I can tell. In one of the pockets was an old newspaper clipping from Cleburne, Texas, where we happen to live and it was dated November 7th 1979. I immediately took an interest to the old, weathered clipping. In it was a story about a "bumper crop" of pecans in Texas that fall season, way back in 1979.
And in a portion of the article the recipe "Texas Pecan Pie" caught my eye. Well, all of you know that I'm a die-hard, Lone Star Lovin', fifth-generation Texan. So immediately my chest swelled up like an overblown balloon at a 10 year olds birthday party. I read it, admired it and carefully folded the article back up and put it back in the pocket.
Then I started perusin' the hand-typed recipe's in the middle of the folder. I began noticing that the ladies submitting the recipes were from all over the nation and a few from out of the United States Mainland. In the middle was a story about the history of the "Non-Commissioned Officer Wives Club" of Ramey Air Force Base In Puerto Rico. As a twenty-three year retired Navy veteran, I was now very interested. It seems this club was organized in 1946. And from Ramey Air Force Base, that answered the question as to why the peoples locations were so diverse. They were all together in Puerto Rico stationed with their husbands at Ramey A.F.B.
I kept reading and it seems this wives club held events each year to raise money. And each one of the wives submitted recipe's for the book and they sold copies of the recipe book one year to raise money for the wives club. They must've sold a LOT of books. They raised $1,700 that year!
I think my wife stumbled across a treasure of recipes, memories and history at that local yard sale yesterday. I thought I'd share the recipe in the book for that "Texas Pecan Pie" with all of my readers here at the Impulsive Texan. This post is to all of my friends and acquaintances and especially for all of those displaced Texans yearning for a piece of home or those Texans in spirit that want to share in the mystique that is Texas. And what's more Texan, that a good ole' Pecan Pie?
I've attached the recipe below along with some pics of that old recipe book. I hope you enjoy this as much as I have.
God bless you all and God Bless Texas!!!! Yee-haw!!!

"I may not get much done, but I sure am slow"...

October 17, 2012

"What I like about Texas"...

I'm not sure what happened this morning, but I woke up and a whole truckload of Texas was about to get all over me. It was a normal morning, get up, shower, drink coffee with my wife, watch a little news and then head out to work.

But as I drove to work, something came alive in me that shows up every once in a while. I'm a fifth-generation Texan and I know what you're thinking. "Shouldn't you wake up ever day with a truckload of Texas on your mind?" Good question and each day I do. But this morning was extra special for some reason. Maybe it was the wonderful, cool, fall breeze that had kicked up. I'm not sure, but what I am sure of is I was overloaded with Texas pride.

So, I want to share one of my favorite videos/songs with you that sums a lot of my pride up in about 4:30.

Gary P Nunn sings it well in this video and my heart swells with pride every time I hear it. To all of my friends and blog followers all over this world, this is what Texas is really about. The land, the people, the history...all of it.

There's a reason why folks from all over the world can show you exactly where Texas is on a worldwide atlas. It's the the friendly people, the wide open spaces, the Alamo, the Texas Rangers, the Dallas Cowboys, big oil, big ranches, big pride, big smiles, pretty girls and handsome men, the mystique of the loyal following of all Texans, whether they're here in the Lone Star State or living somewhere else in the world. It's all of the above and so much more. It's Texas...

There's a joke that goes around about Texans. "You can always tell when a man is from Texas, because when he enters the room he will tell you. And if he doesn't, why embarrass him by asking?"

I hope each and every one of you has a prosperous and wonderful week. God bless you all!

The Impulsive Texan

"I may not get much done, but I sure am slow"...

October 10, 2012

Good to be back...

It's been a while since my last post, but it wasn't because I didn't want to, I've been trying to update my site with new "stuff" and "thangs" and it's going a lot slower than I expected.

So for now, we'll just keep this old blog the same until I get the new updates completed.

As I drove to work this morning, it was clear, cool and bright heading out of Cleburne. My route to work takes me down US Hwy 67 from Cleburne all the way into Midlothian. Roughly 30 miles one way.

As I neared Alvarado, I noticed my surroundings beginning to change. It was getting a bit dimmer outside and suddenly, I ran right into a wall of fog. Strange happening since I had just left the clear blue skies with nary a cloud anywhere.

When I emerged on the other side, a sight awaited me that made me smile. I snapped a quick picture of the gorgeous sunrise, somewhere between Alvarado and Venus.

It made for a nice drive into work. I hope all of you enjoy this picture on this wonderful October 10th! If you want to get a sense of how it really looked, click on the pic and enlarge it.

Have an awesome Texas day!!!

The Impulsive Texan

"I may not get much done, but I sure am slow"...