Leave a note



Sitting on a porch invites a chat and trading stories. For 68 years,  the Alpine rockhouse’s front door has been guarded by a Leave-a-Note box.  Neighbors and strangers do just that,  metaphorically, right here.

29 thoughts on “Leave a note

  1. Newton

    Love this blog. It is almost as great as the one my main squeeze created. Look forward to reading great things from the porch.

  2. Terri Taylor

    Spent tonight pouring over every post. This is a beautiful site, Vivian, with very cool photos—both the old and new ones— and really informative, thoughtful, thought-provoking writing. Nice historical stuff too. VERY impressive!!!

  3. Doni M. Wilson

    Wonderful blog! I can’t stop looking at the pictures too…I subscribed! What wonderful posts, Vivian. I loved your piece in Ten Spurs, and now I can read more! So excited.

    1. Vivian Post author

      Thank you Doni! I am enjoying your blog too. I love the idea of all the contributors from your faculty. Will miss you at the Mayborn.

  4. Warthog

    Hey Viv! Good to see such great accomplishments from a favorite former student. I’ll bet you did not know that I left the math classes and taught journalism for many years after I left RCHS, and had several students qualify for the state UIL meet in Austin with one state winner in Editorial Writing. I appreciate your writing skills and your style.

    I’ve always been fascinated with the Davis mountains, the observatory, Alpine, Marfa, Giant, the Marfa lights, and Big Bend. I’ve traveled that area multiple times and never hesitate to go back. That’s beautiful country—but isn’t all of Texas?

    Keep up the good work. Looking forward to more.

  5. Diana Winkelmann

    Thanks for sharing your blog with me. I just read all the post and enjoyed each one. I would still love to make it to Alpine one of these days.

  6. Danielle Furr

    I have a strong appreciation for your blog. I lived in Barnhart (graduated from Big Lake), then went to Sul Ross in Alpine for 4 years to get my Bachelor’s degree, and I now live in Arlington. Its always great to remember the good times back in West Texas, and it is rarely understood by our fellow “Texans” in the metroplex. Thanks again!

    1. Vivian Post author

      You are right, Danielle, this blog is for you! Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Yes, I always tell these people in the metroplex, that they just think they live in Texas. Ha!

  7. Gale Brown Hethcoat

    Vivian – How delightful to find this blog. I graduated in 1965, left for other places all over the world – and have lost contact with so many of those friends who shared our years growing up in Big Lake. Living with small town values, lack of fear for safety, knowing and participating with church, school and events – one reflects and understands in today’s world what we no longer have. Thank you for a reminder of those things that made us the people we are – and I hope to keep in touch with others through your blog.
    Gale Brown Hethcoat

    1. Vivian Post author

      Wow Gail. I don’t think I’ve heard from you since 1965. Hope all is well. Thank you so much for reading and commenting.

  8. Donna

    Wow, I’m impressed with your blog — you are so “with it” to create a blog.Did you take the photos? I also checked out Reba’s blog that you shared with me.

  9. Christi Arms Greenlee

    Vivian, how marvelous to spend time with you..reflecting! Thanks to Pete (aka Clyde)for posting on Facebook! Loved every moment of each well written blog! My heart and mind are flooded with memories after reading. …some bitter, some sweet! Your mama taught 5 of the Arms children to read! How we all adored her! Reading about her, brought tears to my eyes. Thank you!

  10. Susan

    Wonderful writing! I am determined to make it to out that way sometime in the next year, and I definitely need you to be my tour guide. Congratulations for creating such a great blog.


  11. karen walker

    Love hearing again about the beauty of West Texas and especially Big Lake. Even though my small town
    was in North East Texas it has some of the same type of people. We knew who lived in every house on every
    street. When we sold my mother’s house a part of me went with it but I will always have the memories.
    And they are abundant and beyond. Thank you for sharing a part of small town USA with all of us.
    You are dearly loved !

  12. Pam Stone


    You have the beginnings of several essays on your blog. Take Indian Emily. It would be a great idea for Cowboys and Indians magazine. I think it is published locally. It is slick and colorful. You can get it on the stands.

    Have you thought about writing a book based on the Davis Mountains and towns nearby? Maybe a mystery or creative nonfiction focusing on the life of your mother? From other responses, it is obvious she touched many lives. Is there someone famous she taught to read?

    If a magazine highlights a strong sense of place, one of your stories would be an excellent match. Did you know that the Triple A magazine searches for southwestern stories? I’ve heard from other writers that t is an honor to be published in this magazine. They also appreciate good photography. Think about it.

    Guess what? The only agents in Dallas concentrate on historical biographies. We need one written about a female character! There is no need for Texas history to be male dominated!

    Pam Stone

  13. Leslie Beatty

    Not knowing anything about West Texas (but so enjoying your company, your writing, and your wonderful accent), I love reading about your experiences and memories of that area. And thanks for including the photos; they give your thoughts just the right measure of treasured memories.
    I’ll look forward to many more stories!
    Leslie Beatty

  14. Pamela Stone

    Your photos are soothing in the middle of the night. What talent you have! They add much to your blog. Before I visited Alpine, I never visited your part of West Texas. Unfortunately, Midland is surrounded by concrete and few trees. However, the desert on the edge of Midland gives you a different impression. It is wild with a cool breeze in the evenings.

    Keep up the excellent work. You create a wonderful sense of place with your photos, adding depth to your stories.

  15. Liz

    Super interesting and thoughtful stuff on here. I’m so glad you are sharing your photos, thoughts, and experiences with the world.

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