My cupcakes ended up getting second place! I thought they were pretty dry though. I made them again for Victoria's little family birthday party and used more berry purée in the second batch. I still think they could be better.

Victoria liked them just fine, especially the icing
Poor Victoria was stung by a red wasp on her bicep Sunday night, but thankfully doesn't seem to be having any kind of reaction. It was so strange - a group of half a dozen kids had been playing on this thing for at least and hour, and I was standing right there. I can't believe it waited so long and of all people went for the sweet baby.

Last fall when we moved into the barndominium there was a hawk hanging around with an injured wing. I went as far as to contact a raptor rescue group in Austin to find out what, if anything, he (I don't know the gender but I just refer to the hawk as he and decided to call it Steve ... I don't really agree with the man but naming a hawk brought Steven Hawking to mind) might need. He wasn't injured enough for me to try catching him and I'd seen him catch or scavenge something so I decided to just let nature take its course.

Fast forward to Memorial Day. Steven is healthy and we see him hunting in the pasture in front of the house or out on the county road almost daily. I'm not actually quite sure what type of hawk Steve is ... Just that he's not a red tailed hawk. I'm not sure what kind of peace will work out with Steve when we get chickens and/or ducks ... But I'm hoping we can find a way to all get along. He's really not a big hawk so I'm foolishly hoping he will stick to rodents and snakes.

So Memorial Day. If you didn't know we've been having a lot of rain. And rain. And flooding. And storms. After the drought I'm thankful for all the precitpitation and mud. But it proved to be too much for our two front trees - very old post oaks that I loved to look out at. That filtered the brazen sunlight in the front part of our house.

Just a few days before, you can see them outside

And now they're gone. Well, technically they are still in the yard. Cause they're huge. But they're dead.

I'm anxious to see how old they were
My parents had stopped by to drop of some of my boxes. Dear friends. Especially those of you in  your 20s. If you are ever faced with the "do I want to get rid of this, or store it?" question and the answer isn't immediately obvious (like a full jewelry box) ... give it away. Don't make your poor parents keep it in their garage only so you can open it a decade later and say "What was I thinking?"

They were getting ready to leave when we got several texts from friends in Austin about a tornado near Cameron. What? Tim and my dad went outside to investigate (because that's what you do when a tornado might be coming - run outside!) and us girls were in the classroom. I looked down the county road and watched a wall of wind and rain come slamming toward us.

It hit the house and the trees and I watched the west tree bow under the force, then ease back up ... and up ... and over. In horror I came closer to the window only to see it had taken out the other tree as well.

They don't look big but this is a panoramic picture just to fit them in ...

Which brings us back to Steve. I don't think he lives in either tree, but I didn't see him for several days and feared for the worst. But I finally saw him, happily hunting from our prostrate post oaks.