Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Duncan! or Guess Who's Coming To Dinner!

Today has been great. This morning around 8:59, Melissa a very nice woman, from a nearby ranch, called me to see if we had rescued her dog, in the last two days. "His name is Duncan and he is a black Lacey, very sweet and he has a little white hair on his chest. He slipped out of his collar...."

Sadly, my answer was no, but I told her if he shows up here we will call you...."

Early this afternoon, Tony and I went to Kerrville, for me to grab a few groceries, while Tony purchased five, heavy sacks of Pedigree dog food.

When I was pushing my cart up to Buttermilk, Tony got out and started helping me load our groceries into the back seat, when we heard some guy drive up behind us, and say, "What are y'all doing here?" And then he laughed.

We both turned around and to our surprise it was Kinky. So we started laughing, too. Then Kinky pulled Mr. Green Jeans into the parking space right next to Buttermilk and then we had short, but fun visit with him.

When Tony and I got back home, Carlton was flashing, on top of the breakfast bar, so I pushed the play button, and heard, "Hello, this is Mary. We're your neighbors just past the rescue ranch. I was calling to find out if you lost a dog a few days ago, because we have one here. Please call me."

So I immediately called Mary, but got Oscar instead. "Hello, this is Nancy, at the rescue ranch and we just got back from Kerrville. We haven't lost any dogs, but our neighbor just past your ranch, called me this morning about their sweet, black Lacey running off a few days ago...." And sure enough it was Duncan and it had a happy ending.

Then I quickly cleaned The Cabin, because our dear friend, Jim Keaveny, a fabulous singer/songwriter/ musician, from Terlingua, had contacted Tony to let us know that he would be arriving here around 7:00 tonight.

Around 3:00, Tony walked into the big room and he told me, "Nancy, I just chatted with Chet, on Facebook, and you need to turn your cell phone on right now, because he wants to do FaceTime with us."

Five seconds later my iPhone rang and sure enough it was Chet O'Keefe, so I put him on Speaker phone, so Tony and I could both talk to him.

Chet was FaceTimeing us from England, and he sounded great. We visited for over forty minutes and didn't worry about the cost, because Apple's FaceTime app is just like Skyping, but it only works on iPhone to iPhone and it's free.

Chet told us that his tour of Great Britain was fabulous and much more than he had ever expected it to be. He also told us that he will be back in the States, on Friday and that he cannot wait to  talk to Bett Fields, so he can thank her for donating her Martin guitar to him and to thank all of the generous people that have opened up their hearts to help him get back on his feet, etc.

And before we adios-ed each other, I said, "Guess who is coming to dinner tonight, around 7:00?"

"I'll bet it is Jim Keaveny."


"I would love to talk to Jim and I will try to FaceTime y'all tonight, but I might be asleep, because it will be past 1:00, in the morning here." Then we made a plan for tonight and a backup plan for tomorrow, so he will definitely get to talk to his good friend Jim.

And that's about it for tonight, because I need to let Hazel, out of the closet, so she can suck up our dog's latest fur donations.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Monday, June 27, 2016


Today and the past few days have been fine with not much happening here and that is why I haven't posted anything. Because all that we've basically been doing is keeping up with paperwork, returning phone calls and e-mails and mowing and weed-eating—over and over again.

The only exciting news that I have to share is that it appears that our sweet Hazel is going to be adopted soon by my dear friend Cindy and she'll have a fabulous, forever home, on Cindy's beautiful ranch, in Northern New Mexico.

Once again, we are going to use Breeders Select Pet Transport, located in Center Point, because in the past, Julie Griffith has done such a fabulous job safely transporting Blake Shelton and then Henry Standing Bear's twin sister, Miss Moneypenny, up to Fay and Ian, in Toronto.

So we are thrilled about Hazel's great upcoming adoption and we plan to tell Hazel, as soon as we know the date that Julie is going to transport her. And that's about it for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!    

Thursday, June 23, 2016

My Newest Recipe!

Today has been great. This morning around 10:00, our dear friend Garnet arrived and she could not wait to go get her beloved dog, Lola and take home. And to say the least, she was more excited than us, but Lola was the one most anxious to get out of here and go back to the home she loved. So I took this short video of Garnet and Lola being reunited. Lola Gets To Go Back Home.

This afternoon I tried cooking Kris' Fruit Pancakes recipe for our lunch and I had fun doing it. Here's Kris' Fruit Pancakes recipe, which I have now officially stolen and renamed Cousin Nancy's Delicious Fruity Pancakes recipe. (Sorry about that, Kris, even though I am sure you knew that I would steal it from you.) Here's her/my recipe that she sent to me a few days ago.

And Here Are A Few Pictures of My Delicious Recipe that I took while making it.

Tony and I love my new recipe and it was totally delicious. As the first picture above shows, I used sliced banana and peaches.

Later this afternoon as planned, our dear friend Leisa is coming to see us, because we had invited her to come and spend the night, in my pink, writing cabin, so we could get a good visit and catch up on each other latest news.

Even though it is only 12:30, I wrote this early, because Tony I need to go to Kerrville to run a few errands before Leisa arrives.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Life Is Good!

Today has been great. Late this morning Tony and I took off, for Kerrville, to a few errands. Our first stop was the Save Inn, because we had not eaten breakfast.

So, when we got there, just before noon, we beat the restaurant's rush hour traffic and found a vacant table. And as fate would have it Tony and I ordered the exact same thing—Sinker Omelet, because it is our all time favorite. And needless to say, it was absolutely delicious as always.

Our next stop was at the big H-E-B, because I needed to pick up some ingredients that I didn't have to make Kris' famous, delicious Fruit Pancakes recipe, so I can cook some up tomorrow, because Jim raved about it when we met them for lunch, on Monday.

Our last stop was at one of our favorite stores, in Kerrville—Wild Birds Unlimited, so Tony could pick up some more of their choice birdseed blends.

When we walked inside this amazing store, with great vibes, Linda and Marguerite, behind the counter, greeted us. While Tony checked out the birdseed selections, etc. I started talking to Marguerite about her dogs, especially Scout, who Henry Standing Bear has a huge crush on.

While Marguerite was giving us updates on her four legged family, that she had adopted from us, she chuckled, and said, "When our great customers come in here, a lot of them know me and they want to talk to me about their dogs and pets. And I am always telling them about y'all's rescue ranch, too. So the other day I decided to make this, so I can show it to them." Then she went to the back of the store and returned with the pictures of the four dogs that she has adopted from us, over the years.

Tony and I loved her pictures, because we love seeing our dogs, in their forever homes, after being adopted from us. On this side of her card stock was Mini-Marguerite and sweet Enzo.

As we looked at these dogs Marguerite chuckled, and said, "I tell them I adopted Mini Marguerite, because Nancy had named her after me, in hopes of getting me to adopt her. And I adopted Enzo, because when I went into Hoegemeyer's to pick something up, Susan knew that I could not resist German Shepherds and in front of everybody, in their lobby, suggested that I go meet Enzo."

On the backside of the sheet were adorable pictures of Scout and Odi.

Then Marguerite continued on, and said, "I tell them I adopted Scout, when once again, I walked into Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic and there stood you and Tony holding that adorable puppy in your arms, and you told me she had been deserted, in a park, that some kids had found her. And then Nancy tells me, "This pup is part German Shepherd and she is so sweet...." Then we all started laughing, because it was so obvious that there is absolutely no German Shepherd in her.

"And then I tell them sweet Odi's story, that you had blogged about. So after reading your blog about the one-eyed pup, I went to check him out, at the clinic and I immediately fell in love with him."

So, I asked Marguerite if I could take pictures of her dogs, so I could blog about it tonight. So you can guess what her answer was.

When Tony and I got back home, Carlton was flashing, on top of the breakfast bar, again. So after we put up the groceries, we listened to several new messages. 

Two of the messages were from our dear friend Garnet and Tony and I were thrilled with what we heard, because she and her husband Sandy wanted to come and take sweet Lola back home! 

I called Garnet immediately to tell her that we would love for her and Sandy to come get their lovable Lola. 

So tomorrow morning, Garnet and Sandy are coming out to get their sweet Lola!  So once again, life is good. (Knock-on-wood.)

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Roy's Meds! or Note To Chet! or Bett Fields Is An Angel!

Today has been fantastic! This morning after Tony did the chores outside we went to Kerrville for three reasons:

     1. Pick up Roy Rogers' meds at Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic
     2. Fill up Buttermilk at the big H.E.B.
     3. And buying a few groceries at the big H.E.B.

Of course, Roy's meds were the main reason for the trip and on our way, to Kerrville, Tony told me that he was hungry and he asked me if we were going to eat in town. And in less than a minute and one phone call, we were going to meet our good friends Kris & Jim for lunch, at Billy Gene's Restaurant, because all of us love their Monday Special that they serve with Squash Casserole.

During our fun, delicious lunch we talked about how much we love the Longmire series, Grace & Frankie and The Ranch, all on Netflix. We also laughed and joked about a lot of other things, but I got nervous when Tony said, "We are running on fumes and I hope that we can make it to H.E.B. without running out of gas...."

So later on, after we had adios-ed each other, we headed down Junction Highway, with our fingers crossed, in hopes that we didn't run out of gas.

Well, luckily we made it there fine and while Tony was filling up Buttermilk's nearly empty gas tank, I quickly rushed up and down the isles getting the few groceries that we needed.

And I guess, because of the adrenaline rush of possibly running out of gas—we drove straight home. And it wasn't until we came inside, The Cabin, with the groceries, that we realized that both of us had completely forgotten to pick up Roy's meds, at Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic.
(And please note that I blaming the temporary "adrenaline rush" for this, instead of admitting that we are simply old and that we often are forgetful.)

So, around 3:00, Tony and I once again, jumped back into Buttermilk and took off for Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic.

When we arrived at the clinic, all of the parking spaces were taken, so Tony took a left and dropped me off, so I could skip inside to pick up Roy's monthly supply of pills.

When I walked inside, their lobby was full of all kinds of people, with their lovable pets anxiously awaiting to see the doctors. Sweet Susan saw me and smiled, and then said, "I bet that you're here to pick up a guitar and Roy's pills!"

"Omg!" I said. "The guitar is here! That's fantastic news!" Then Susan walked away and quickly returned with Chet O'Keefe's brand new Martin guitar, inside a case, with a pink note taped to the case.

It was the awesome Martin "Good Time Eddie" that Bett Fields had generously donated to Chet,  after reading Donna Gable Hatch's story about Chet's van burning up, in the Kerrville Daily Times.

So now I can disclose that the secret drop-off point that Bett and I had agreed on was, at Hoegemeyer Animal Clinic.

With Roy's meds in one hand and Chet's guitar in my other hand, I said, "Susan, please thank Cathy and all of y'all for letting Bett drop the guitar off here. I can't wait to let Chet know!"

When Tony drove up to pick me up, he saw the guitar and he was smiling from ear-to-ear. I then quickly loaded Chet's guitar, on the back seat, jumped  into the front seat and we headed home.

As soon as we got home, Tony put Chet O'Keefe's new cut-away Martin on the coffee table, while I read the pink note.

Because Chet had asked me earlier to please check out the Martin and play it, so I could let him know  about it. I opened the case. And it looked brand new!

Then I looked at the paperwork and read Bett's note:

After I read her sweet note, that nearly made me tear up, I agreed with Tony that Bett Fields has a heart of gold which definitely confirms that she is an Angel amongst us. 

Then I put the note down and played this beautiful awesome guitar for only a couple of minutes, because I already knew when I plucked the first string that it was one super, fine Martin guitar. And it also has a Roland preamp installed on it that I am sure Chet will love. 

And there is just one more thing I want to say, before posting this tonight. "Chet, I know that your blue, handmade, Telecaster is totally irreplaceable, but to help you get back on your feet I want to give you my Telecaster guitar that I named B.B. But you can't have my strap!"

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!  

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Not For Sale!

Yesterday afternoon Tony and I had a very pleasant surprise. Doug, a friend/volunteer of ours who, in the past, has helped drive our dear friend Paul, out here, to deliver free dog food to us, showed up with his visiting daughter Lisa and her friend Annie.

Doug wanted Lisa and Annie, from Connecticut, to see our rescue ranch, while they were down here visiting him.

When they arrived, Tony was busy giving two nice women a tour, so I went to greet Doug, Lisa and Annie. And because we think so highly of Doug, because he volunteered  to drive Paul out here, because Paul was no long permitted to drive, I knew from the git-go that I was going to enjoy giving a tour of our rescue ranch and visiting with Doug, his sweet daughter, Lisa and her sweet friend, Annie.

I had already introduced them to all of our dogs, on Lois Lane's side and while I was introducing them to Donny and Marie Osmond, we saw the women leaving in their car, as Tony drove up, on Kermit. "Did they want to adopt any of our dogs," I asked, as Tony climbed out of Kermit.

"Well, yes," Tony replied," and no." Then he chuckled. "They wanted to buy Henry Standing Bear."

"No way," I said, as he walked up and joined us. "Are you serious? They wanted to buy Henry?"

"Yes. I'm serious," Tony stated. "When I told them that he was a part of our family, the woman told me to just give her an amount, because money was no object to her. I mean she really did want to buy Henry. So I told her that we loved Henry and he was not for sale." Then he laughed and said, "They were real nice women and she may have been teasing me, but she sure seemed serious about it."

Then the five of us took off. Tony and Kermit came up to The Cabin, while I finished walking around, introducing the rest of our sweet dogs to our friendly visitors.

While I was just about finished giving them a tour, Lisa and Annie told me that they were involved with animal rescue, in Connecticut, and that they are always pulling dogs from a local kill shelter and then fostering them until they could find them good homes. And they told me that they were big-time animal lovers and how much they love dogs. So, I invited everyone to come up, to The Cabin, so we could visit some more and drink some water, inside our air-conditioned trailer.

Tony and I had a blast visiting with Doug and getting to know Lisa and Annie. And at one point, Doug told us, "I know that coming out here is going to be the highlight of Lisa's and Annie's trip." And the women told us that Doug was right about that, because they were very impressed with our rescue ranch and then they thanked us for what we do out here.

Before our friends had to go Tony asked them to please watch our Longmire—Texas Style video and watch Chet O'Keefe sing his song, that he wrote for me, Ode to Cousin Nancy, when we had a house/dining hall concert, out here for him, two years ago.

They thought our Longmire—Texas Style spoof was absolutely hilarious and all three of them teared up, when they watched Chet sing, Ode To Cousin Nancy, even though Tony had pre-warned them that it would make them cry.

And as we were hugging and adios-ing each other, I joked, "I'm sorry that Tony made y'all cry. I always hate it when visitors leave here crying and wiping away tears." Then all of us burst out laughing. Life Is Good!

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Good Time Eddie!

Today has been great! Late this afternoon, Tony walked into the big room, and said, "I just talked to Chet, on Facebook and he wants to know if we can help him find that woman, in Kerrville, who is wanting to give her Martin Guitar to him. Would you do it?"

"Omg yes!" I said. "I would love to get into contact with her." Then I got busy searching for this woman, on the Internet. I Googled this and then I Googled that and then I tried and tried, again.

Fifteen minutes later, I got lucky! So I skipped back to Tony's office and told him, "I think I've found her and I'm fixin' to call her right now."

After I punched in her phone number I took a deep breath to calm myself. "Hello," she said.

"Hi $@#^&, this is Nancy Parker-Simons and you don't know me, but I am a good friend of Chet O'Keefe. I run the Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch and Chet is, in England, touring right now. And just a few minutes ago, he talked to my husband Tony and was asking him if we could help find you, because he is very interested in the guitar." Then I am thinking to myself that she might think that I was trying to scam her or something.

"Oh, I'm afraid that you found the wrong $@#^&." Then there was an uncomfortable pause.

"Well, I am so sorry for bothering you. I guess I'll just keep on trying."

"Wait," she said. "Now who did you say he was?"

"Chet O'Keefe. A few weeks ago his van burned up and he lost his guitars and just about everything and Donna Gable Hatch wrote about it, in the Kerrville Daily Times last week...."

"Yes! Yes, that's me! You have found the right $@#^&!"

"Thank goodness!" I said.

"I'm so glad that you found me..." Then we talked about Chet for a few minutes.

"Okay, now let me tell you about the guitar. I bought it about seven years ago and I only played it a few times. It's like brand new. Awhile back, I was thinking about selling it and then I read the story about Chet, in the Kerrville Daily Times and I immediately knew that I wanted to give it to Chet. Its a DC16GTE Martin guitar and GTE stands for Good Time Eddie....."

After we had talked a few more minutes she and I made plans on how she could get the guitar to me, so we could get it to Chet. So I suggested that she drop it off at ^%$% and ask them to please call us, so we could come and pick it up for Chet.

Then she asked me if I would mind asking Chet to give her a call when he gets back over the pond.

"I most certainly will, because I know that he would love to thank you in person...."

After we adios-ed each other. I skipped back down the hallway and told Tony the great news. Then I called our friends, at ^%$% to tell them what was going on. And they were thrilled to help out Chet.
(I'll reveal who they are when we pick up the guitar.)

And while Tony was once again talking to Chet and telling him the good news. I went Online and found a picture of the model number of that awesome Martin guitar. Then Tony walked back into the big room and I said, "It's an awesome guitar and it's a cutaway! And that's perfect for Chet! He's going to love it!" Then I showed Tony this picture of the guitar.

Then Tony went back into his office and went back on Facebook to contact Chet and give him the model number, etc.

And a few minutes later, Tony came back and told me that Chet said, "WOW!...." and he is so happy about getting that Martin guitar.

Then I started writing this and about halfway through, the phone rang—it was Kinky. "Nance, do you want to go for a walk with me tonight?"

"Yes, I do, but I am right, in the middle, of writing something. Could we do it a little later?"

"That's fine. It's too hot right now, anyway. How about around 7:00?"

"That'll work...." And that's about it for tonight. Life Is Good!

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

We've Been Pretty Busy!

Today and the last few days have been a lot of fun, because we've been pretty busy working and also having so much fun and that is the main reason that I haven't posted anything new, on my blog.

This past Friday, after having a fun time eating lunch with our fabulous volunteers, at the China Town restaurant, Chris and Suzanne, who don't live in Kerrville, followed us over to Wolfmueller's Books and Bad Girlz of Texas, because all of us had told them what great places they were.

When we first arrived Tony and Chris went inside Sandy & Jon's fabulous bookstore, while Suzanne and I went next door to do some serious shopping, at Bad Girlz of Texas.

While Suzanne and I were shopping, we listened to the great music from the 60's and 70's and we could not quit laughing at the hilarious cards for all occasions, the very funny magnets, the really cool clothes and purses, etc.

While Suzanne was busy picking out some laugh-out-loud cards to buy, I went up to the checkout counter and paid Sadie for two refrigerator magnets and a little guitar mint container. Then I adios-ed Suzanne and Sadie, because Suzanne was still shopping, so I could go over and say hi to Sandy & Jon and show them the cute things that I had just purchased.

And when we got ready to leave, Suzanne was still shopping over, at Bad Girlz of Texas and Chris told us how much he loved Wolfmueller's Books awesome bookstore and that he was planning on coming back soon to it, so he could spend several hours checking out there huge collection of new & used books and their rare books.

Saturday we had quite a few people come out to take tours and we've got our fingers crossed for one of our dogs that they might come back to adopt.

Sunday evening was a fabulous blast from the past, because we went to the awesome Kerrville Folk Festival's 45th annual festival, to listen to Harpeth Rising, Ari Hest, Judy Collins and the festival's incredibly great Memorial Concert that included the awesome Symphony of the Hills Orchestra performing with Judy Collins, Harpeth Rising and Matt Nakoa. 

We arrived early, in hopes of getting good bench seats with backs. But just in case they were already taken, Tony brought his famous "Blue Chair," that last year, after I watched David Crosby's awesome performance, at the Kerrville Folk Festival, I had casually given away to one of Donna's & Ryan's friends. You know, his blue fishing chair, that two months later, sweet Donna Gable Hatch retrieved from her friend and returned it to Tony. 

And as it turned out—we did not have to use our folding chairs after all, because we found really great bench seats. This is a picture I took, before the place filled up.

And to say the least, "We had a wonderful time that night, at the Kerrville Folk Festival's concert and Judy Collins was incredibly great and she has not lost her beautiful voice. 

Today was fun, because this afternoon we met our great friends Kris & Jim for lunch, in Kerrville. It was their turn to pick a place, so we ate lunch, at Bella Sera. And once again, Tony and I did not order the exact same thing. He had Lasagna and I ate Linguine with Olive Oil, Garlic & Mushrooms and they were totally delicious. 

Of course, we had a blast getting together with our friends and we did a lot of laughing as we took turns confessing some of the hilarious things we had done in high school and college. And that's about it for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Friday, June 10, 2016

Good Grief!

Today has been great. This afternoon we ate lunch with our great volunteers, at the China Town Restaurant, in Kerrville and of course, it was a lot of fun.

Tony and I did not order the same thing on their menu like we usually always do, but we both ordered the Hot & Sour Soup.

When it was near the end of our lunch, June was talking to us about something she planned on doing, as I stood up, and said, "Excuse me, but I need to go to the bathroom."

Then June continued, and said, "So we'll see you in three months.."

I turned around and interrupted June, and joked, "Good grief! It's not going to take me that long." Everyone, at our table, burst out laughing, as I turned around and swiftly skipped away. And truth be known, I was sitting back at our table, in under three minutes.

When Tony and I got back home I checked my e-mail. Our good friend Donna Gable Hatch had sent me the story that she wrote about Chet & Willie's van burning. I know that I promised to post it, so here it is:

"Local musician loses everything in blaze

 By Donna Gable Hatch
 Special to The Times

A GoFundMe campaign is underway to help local singer-songwriter Chet OKeefe to recoup and regroup after a raging inferno gutted his van on June 1 and destroyed everything he owns.

OKeefe and his 6-year-old border collie-mix, Willie, were traveling in the van as part of a six-month concert tour of Canada and Washington State, when he noticed the vehicle losing power as it climbed a steep incline.

“It always smoked a bit, but this was different, something electrical. Acrid smoke began filling the van,” OKeefe said by phone from Washington.

He pulled over, got Willie out of the van and began pulling his belongings from the van.

“I tossed them about 15 feet from the van, but Id packed everything I own, so there was a lot of stuff. The smoke was getting really thick, and it was so hot, so I grabbed Willie and we got away from the van. I kept waiting for the gas tank to explode like in the movies.”

A fire sparked, and much to OKeefes horror, the fire spread “downhill like a lava flow and burned up the belongings I had set outside the van. I thought, ‘Theres no stopping it now. I just watched it burn.”

Lost in the blaze was OKeefes Martin acoustic guitar, which hed won in a songwriting competition; a mandolin; a handmade Telecaster; a Fishman Solo PA; a Bose stereo; recording gear; a MacBook; an iPad; a solar setup — panels, AGM solar batteries, charge controller and inverter — and effects pedals; as well as his clothes, wallet and passport.

“When I think about the things lost, I think about the things people had given me the most, the handmade stuff, the stuff given with meaning and loving intent: the shirt given by my good friend, Shannon, that her deceased husband, Mark Kneeskern, had made; the white oak walking stick with burned-in lotus flower designs and faces that my stepfather had made; the beaded eagle necklace given to me by my friend Mick at a crucial time in my life; the handmade leather vest made by Mark Ingram, who died a few years back; and the handmade blue Telecaster that Ive been playing for 25 years, made by my buddy, Frank Padellaro.”

A friend on Sunday started a GoFundMe campaign on behalf of OKeefe. To date, the site — www.gofundme.com/27zbb78 — has raised more than $3,500.

Paying it forward
OKeefe is known for his giving nature and has participated in numerous fundraisers for local nonprofits, including Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch, a no-kill animal sanctuary in Medina, co-founded by Kinky Friedman and Nancy Parker-Simons.

“Chet called me to tell me the horrible news about his van burning up. It broke my heart, and I was fighting back tears. He lost nearly everything that he owned,” Parker-Simons said. “We hope that everyone will reach into their pockets and pay it forward by making a donation to help Chet get back on his feet — and it certainly wouldnt hurt for you to say a little prayer for him and Willie while youre at it.”

OKeefe got his start at the Kerrville Folk Festival, where he was twice a finalist in the festivals Grassy Hill Kerrville New Folk competition, 2010 and 2011.

Festival producer Dalis Allen said she would let performers and festival attendees know about the fundraising campaign for OKeefe. The festival continues through Sunday at Quiet Valley Ranch, 9 miles south of Kerrville on Texas 16.

“Chet is a great songwriter,” Allen said. “The safety of Chet and his dog is certainly the good news, but these kinds of losses are devastating to a touring artist that makes his living from the instruments that were lost. We hope he is able to get the van and instruments replaced soon and is back playing his songs for appreciative audiences around the country.”

OKeefe, who was awarded the International Bluegrass Music Associations Song of the Year Award in 2010, spent nine years in Nashville, followed by a short stint in Dallas and Northern Washington State before making his way to the Hill Country.

He performed with blues master and rock ‘nroll pioneer Bo Diddley, and is known for his unique storytelling sound, which combines a mix acoustic folk, western and jazzy-bluesy tunes. He recently released his long-awaited 10-track album, “Because of You,” which is available on iTunes, Amazon.com and OKeefes website, among other sites.

OKeefe is scheduled to leave Sunday for a two-week concert tour in Great Britain, and on Monday, he applied for — and was granted — an emergency passport. He said he plans to borrow a guitar and necessary equipment to play his upcoming gigs.

“Losing these things is pale in contrast to imagining loss of life: There is a great feeling of thankfulness and appreciation that has emerged from this that I carry with me everywhere I go, and people seem to recognize and tune in to it,” OKeefe said.

“However, that spirit of helping someone out in times of need is a human quality that transcends place and social status. The amount of love that has come my way in the last few days has been warmly encouraging, has given me hope.”

In true singer-songwriter fashion, OKeefe said theres a bright side to this sad saga: a new song. The working title is “Cleansing By Fire.”

“The things people gave me were the most important because each one carried an imprint of the intention and energy involved between each person and me,” OKeefe said. “They had deeper meanings attached — hope, love, trust, family — but none of those attached gifts can be taken away by fire.”

How to help

What: A GoFundMe campaign to aid local signer-songwriter Chet OKeefe

Details: OKeefe his musical instruments and equipment, as well as a solar setup, clothing, wallet and passport, in a June 1 fire that engulfed his van

How: To make a donation, visit www.gofundme.com/27zbb78

Info: For more information about Chet OKeefe, visithttp://chetokeefe.com"

So once again, I want to thank the Kerrville Daily Times and Donna Gable Hatch and everyone for helping get the word out about our good friend, Chet O'Keefe and for making donations. Let's keep paying it forward and please share this in your social media! And that's about it for tonight.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Thank Y'all!

Today has been great, because this morning when we opened up the Spotlight section, in the Kerrville Daily Times newspaper, we saw on the front page's top right-hand corner, Donna Gable Hatch's "Local musician loses everything in blaze" story about Chet O'Keefe's van and a picture of it engulfed in flames.

Donna and her husband Ryan are good friends with Chet, too and a few days ago, right after I had sent her an e-mail about what had happened to Chet and Willie, she called me seconds later, because she and Ryan were unaware of it and they were very concerned. And before she and I adios-ed each other, I had verified Chet's e-mail address and phone number with her.

Several minutes later the phone rang, again and it was Chet. He thanked me for letting Donna and Ryan know and we had a very brief conversation, because Chet had just picked up his passport and he and his mother were heading back home and trying to get out of the heavy Seattle traffic.

Then a few minutes later the phone rang again, but this time it was Donna. She told me that she had just talked to the Kerrville Daily News and  that she was going to write a story to help Chet and Willie get back on their feet. And then she briefly interviewed me for the story, before we adios-ed each other, again.

In Donna's great story, she included the address for "Let's help Chet: https://www.gofundme.com/27zbb78 to make donations and I loved reading what the great Dalis Allen, the producer for the famous, Kerrville Folk Festival, kind words about Chet and his music and that she wanted to help out Chet too, by getting the word out about Chet's fundraising campaign, "Let's help Chet" to the performers and the good folks, attending the fun music festival. And tomorrow when Donna's column is posted on the Internet, I will be sure to share it.

After lunch when Tony went, to the highway, to pick up our mail, I had another great surprise when I read the Bandera County Courier newspaper, because our good friend, Judith Pannebaker, had written a fantastic story, "L-o-L-A, Lola La-la-la-la Lola, about our dog Lola" to help us get Lola get adopted. 

Before I post this tonight, I want to thank all of these great folks: Kerrville Daily Times, Donna Gable Hatch, Judith Pannebaker, Bandera County Courier, Dalis Allen and Kerrville Folk Festival and everyone who have or is or are planning to donate to help out Chet O'Keefe and Willie get back on their feet and I also want to thank these same people and newspapers for helping our rescue ranch! Life is Good. (Knock-On-Wood)

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!

Monday, June 6, 2016

One Of The Good Guys!

This morning when I got up nothing hurt, so I thought chances are I passed away in my sleep, so as a test, I pinched myself real hard and it hurt. The next thing that I did, after telling all of our 4-legged family that I loved them so much, I made a cup of coffee and went to my computer to look at Chet's Facebook page, because we have been so worried about what has happened to our dear friend, who is like a brother to us.

I was glad to see that Chet had posted about his van burning up and losing just about all of his earthly possessions and with the help from his good friend, Chris Seaton, had created a gofundme campaign for him, so I immediately grabbed my credit card and made a donation so Tony and I could help him. And you can click on this link: https://www.gofundme.com/27zbb78 to help out Chet, too.

This is what Chris wrote and then Chet wrote about on his https://www.gofundme.com/27zbb78 page:

"This campaign is to help Chet O'Keefe, who lost his van and many of his belongings to a fire on June 1st.  Chet lost his Martin acoustic, mandolin, the "Blue Guitar" (a handmade Telecaster), Fishman Solo PA, Bose stereo, recording gear, MacBook, iPad, solar setup (panels, AGM solar batteries, charge controller, inverter, etc...), effects pedals, clothes, wallet, money, and passport to the fire.  Most importantly, however, Chet and Wiilie were unharmed.

Chet was close to trading the van for a small RV, which he still has the opportunity to purchase if the money is raised quickly enough.  I would like us all to at least get him enough funds to buy that RV.  Of course Chet will decide how best to use the money and hopefully we'll do well enough to get him most of his stuff replaced (unfortunately some of it, like the "Blue Guitar" is irreplaceable).  Below is Chet's description and pictures of the fire.  Let's help Chet get back on his feet and back on the road again."
Chet's words on this:

"On the night of June 1st my van caught fire pretty good. It always smoked a bit from oil dripping on the exhaust, but it soon became apparent that this was something different, something electrical, and acrid smoke began filling the van.

I started dragging things out and set them on the ground about 15 feet in back of it, the van being pretty full, as I had packed for about six months on the road. Thinking 15 feet would be far enough, not imagining the impending extent of the deal, I continued to throw stuff out the door. It began to get hot, I was breathing smoke, and the 100's of car explosions I've seen in movies started running through my head where the gas tank catches and the explosion lifts the whole deal about 6 feet off the ground.

So I backed away and flagged down the first passer by, a delightful woman named Bryn, who put 'freaking out Willy' in her car and gave me water and drove up the hill to call the fire department, as there was no cell signal at the scene. She stayed with me for a while and invited me to dinner with her and her husband, and I wonder if I will see them again. I probably will.

So instead of the gas tank exploding there were small other explosions, first, the tires popped off, then the shotgun slugs I had on the floor fired off: I had loaded Jim's 12 gauge with 3 of the 5 slugs from the box and two remained in the van.

But somehow the gas tank just leaked and didn't explode and the gas meandered lazily downhill to my guitars and stuff, and then on to the neighbors car, lighting all that up as you can see in the pictures; they actually show the progression of events quite well.

So, this happened, and I start to think, you know, what's next? And here's the bright idea I had, which I will preface with a poem written by Jim Dorr on the night of the fire:

An unexpected fire: all is lost

Dog and I are alright

No: not all is lost



Gamebird still flies



About 100 Gamebird CDs burned but there is about 3/4 of each one left, so I thought, I could put each one in a thrift store frame and send them out to people, for donations, so I can put things back together again.

Along with my wallet and money burning, my passport burnt too, so it is off to Seattle today to the passport office to get a new one: I am supposed to be getting on a plane June 12th to fly to London England for a two week musical tour; please send positive vibes that this will go smoothly!

Thank you all in advance!  ...  Much Love, Chet" 

These are just a couple of pictures that I grabbed from his https://www.gofundme.com/27zbb78 page.

I am asking all of you that read my blog to please share this on all of your social media and to please help Chet, because he truly is one of the good guys and we need them now more than ever. And I thank you in advance for helping Chet O'Keefe and paying it forward, because it is the right thing to do! https://www.gofundme.com/27zbb78

Sincerely With Love,
Cousin Nancy

Sunday, June 5, 2016

When Bad Things Happen!

For the past few days all that we've done is mow and weed-eat, mow and weed-eat and that is the reason that I've not posted anything. Because mowing and weed-eating just isn't all that interesting to write or read about. For example I could have written something like this:

"Well, I mowed over a tennis ball, in Lois Lane's pen, because the grass was so tall that I couldn't see it." or "Gosh! I mowed over a couple of big rocks, in Rockette's and Rocky's pen, because I've never seen grass and weeds that tall." So enough said about that boring topic.

Today has been great, even though Kinky, Tony and I are very concerned about what has happened to a very dear friend of ours. He called me last Friday and told me what had happened to him and it really upset me, because I hate it when bad things happen to good people. And he's most definitely good people.

Tomorrow, after he writes about it on his Facebook page and has officially launched his gofundme.com campaign to help him raise money, I plan to write more about this and I will include links on how all of us can reach into our pockets to help him out. And that's about it for today.

P.S. Tony just came inside and said, "I just finished mowing the two big pens, up front." And that's some exciting, good news.

Y'all have a great evening and keep on laughing!