Monthly Archives: December 2013

End of Year Frivolities

Well, it’s the end of 2013 except for the celebrating.  My idea of celebrating this year will be to go out to the chicken coop at midnight and throw the girls some chicken scratch like confetti and yell, “Happy New Year!” which will cause them all to lay an egg because they will have all been asleep.

I will also give Belle and Bonnie some bones and give David a great big kiss and go upstairs and snuggle down into my bed and read a good book.

I’m done with all the partying and trying to pretend to have fun on New Year’s Eve when really, I would rather be home with the one I love or if any of my other loved ones wanted to join us that would be okay, but don’t expect me to be the life of the party.

I use to think we needed to be out doing something on New Year’s Eve and every year I never felt like it was all it was cracked up to be.  David and I dressed up one year and went to a big party at a hotel in Indianapolis.  There were bands and lots of food and even a casino.  I don’t gamble but this was not gambling for money.  We were the oldest ones there and everyone treated us so nicely and we had a good time. At the end of the evening there was a balloon drop and it was amazing there were so many balloons.  We had masks and hats and noise makers.  It really was fun.  We stayed all night at the hotel and the next morning they served a huge breakfast buffet with everything you could think of, even sushi, which I tried and decided I didn’t like it much, but everything else was so good.  We planned to do it again the next year, but David had back surgery right after Christmas that year, so we couldn’t go and for some reason, we have never done it again

We have several birthdays in December.  Our youngest grandson was born three days after Christmas and this year he had his very own party instead of sharing a party with his older brother who was born in November.   It was like Christmas all over again for him.



He was one happy kid.



He licked his fork clean of all the icing.



He opened lots of presents.  He does that tongue thing that seems to run in our family.  My mother use to stick out her tongue when she was concentrating.

We had a nice evening visiting with my son-in-law’s family and enjoying the children.  When we were driving home we passed this amazing, Christmas lighted house.  We pulled off the road to take pictures.



A beautiful Nativity.



Polar bears around a tree.


This house had everything lit.  It was beautiful.


Santa and his sleigh.

It was a lovely ending to a very nice day.

Now that 2013 is being put to sleep and a brand spanking new year is upon us, I want to wish you all a very blessed new year.  May your year be one of health, joy and love.   I’ll be writing about my plans for the new year next time.  Happy New Year!  Bye.

I Got This New Camera, so……..

Last fall I dropped my little camera that I have been using ever since I started my blog.  It wasn’t an expensive camera, but it did the job I wanted it to do.  When I dropped it, I couldn’t zoom in for pictures any longer.  So, David got me a new camera for Christmas.

Since we got to spend some time with our grandchildren this week, I got to practice taking pictures and my grandchildren were happy to oblige.








Photo bomb.


My granddaughter wasn’t here at the time.  She was busy getting her first book published.  Yes, my fourteen year old  granddaughter has written a book.  One of a trilogy and she will soon be a published author.  That will be a blog in itself when the book gets published.  Therefore, I didn’t get many pictures of her.

I wanted to get a picture of all the cousins together.  Getting kids to all smile at the same time can be hard as you will see by the next few pictures.







Finally got a decent picture, but, as you can see, I got the other adults’ pictures, who were trying to take photos too, in the mirror behind the children.


This boy was a chubby little baby just a blink of the eye ago.  Now he can bench press his six year old cousin.


We gave the  children some Christmas gifts.  These are games David and I built and painted.  We gave them an assortment of balls and they spent a good part of the evening rolling the balls down the ramps.  There was a third one, but I didn’t get a picture of it.


I tried getting creative and took a picture of my daughter’s Christmas tree’s reflection in the window.  I think it looks awesome.  They live out in the woods up a big hill.  The view in itself is awesome.

I’m really looking forward to taking pictures in the coming year with my new camera.  Who knows where it will take me or I will take it.  What adventures we will have.  Maybe something spectacular will be photographed.  Who knows.  The new year lies before us with all its joys, sorrows, fun, and living to experience.  I want to photograph it all.  Bye.


Signs of the Season





Just a couple of days ago the headless scarecrow and the woodpile were shrouded in layers of snow and ice.  I slipped and slid back to the chicken coop to gather the eggs and feed and water the chickens.

After two days of rain, the snow is completely gone, but not to worry.  The weathermen are forecasting more snow and ice and cold weather coming our way.  Such is life in Indiana.

We are ready for Christmas.



The tree is decorated with all the ornaments and children’s creations we have collected over the years.



Most of the presents are wrapped and under the tree.



Stockings are hung by the, er, window with care.   My mother made the red stockings with the rickrack on them many years ago when I was a girl.   She made them for her Sunday school classes and filled them with homemade candy and cookies.  She always made gingerbread men and I would help her decorate them.


Old electric candles are glowing.



I got these cute loaf bowls from a friend today.   Tomorrow I am going to bake little loaves of bread in them and make garlic and butter bread sticks for a family get together we are having.



I made candy today and realized why I hate to make candy.  I don’t have the patience.  These were supposed to be neat little squares of peanut butter fudge dipped in chocolate, but they quickly became globs of peanut butter and chocolate with no shape whatsoever.  They are still good, though, and about five hundred calories a bite.



David has been doing his part being the hunter and gatherer.  He went and got us Kentucky fried chicken one day when I just could not cook another thing.


Lights glowing, hearts waiting for Christmas Day.  It will come whether we are ready or not.



Merry Christmas to you all and Happy Birthday, Jesus.   I will see you on the other side.  Bye.


I Can’t Believe, But I Do

I can’t believe it’s less than a week until Christmas.  I have lived through many Christmases and each one has been different, but still the spirit of Christmas lives on.

I believe we celebrate Jesus Christ’s birthday at Christmas time.  Jesus was very probably born in warmer weather since the shepherds were watching their sheep out in the hills around Bethlehem when He was born.  December 25th was picked long ago as the date Christians would celebrate his birth.  Christ Mass is how the word originated.

Anyway, I believe Christmas is special because there is a spirit that surrounds the whole holiday.  The spirit of love, joy, peace and giving of gifts like the magi gave gifts to the Christ child.  I love the gift giving part.  As I grow older, getting gifts just doesn’t seem as important to me as giving them.  I wish I could give more.


David and I have put on our Santa hats and gotten to work building, painting and sewing Christmas gifts.  This weekend I will be baking and making candy.  Some of the grandkids will be here so they can help me.



Years ago when David and I had a quilt shop we sold this quilting book.  It has so many wonderful projects in it and I have made a few.



I made this quilt and gave it to someone who is a teacher.  I would like to make another because I really love it.


I made this quilt and it is put out every Christmas.  There are a few more projects in the book I plan to make for next Christmas.  Wish I had more time to get them done this year, but time is running out.



These are some of the things I am working on or will be working on this week.  I forgot I had the Betty Crocker Christmas cookbook and am finding several recipes in it I want to try.  I also am going to make gingerbread cookies.  Something I haven’t done in years, but it just sounded like fun this year. I would like to make peanut brittle.  I love peanut brittle.  One time I was riding my exercise bicycle while eating peanut brittle at the same time.  David came into the room and laughed and said “You’re defeating the purpose of riding the bike, aren’t you?”  I just laughed and ate another piece of peanut brittle.

I told you I would show you my Jim Shore nativity set so here it is.


I found this in a Hallmark store one year and fell in love with it.  Each figure has a quilt pattern on it.


Look at the beautiful quilt covering Jesus.  He didn’t have something so lovely covering Him there in the stable with all the animals.  All Mary had were a few rags with which to wrap Him.  The Savior of the world wrapped in rags lying in an animal’s feeding trough.  How lowly was the birth of the King of the universe.  God’s son come to earth to save us all.  The best Christmas gift anyone could receive.


This little lamb is so sweet.  Another quilted covering.  Jim Shore knew this added touch would make his figurines special.



The Wise men.  Where did they come from?  So far away, Jesus was about two years old when they finally found him. They brought gifts of gold, frankincense and Myrrh which is why people always think there were just three. It doesn’t say three wise men in the Bible.  There could have been more or maybe only two with several gifts.  Still, they knew this was an important enough birth to make the long journey to see the Christ child and bring him expensive gifts.  Mary and Joseph probably used these gifts to help support their little family when they had to flee to Egypt because the evil King Herod was looking for this special baby who would be king.

To think, God’s son was threatened to be killed before He would have ever had a chance to die for us all on the cross.  But God had a plan for His son and for all of us.



Mary probably rode a donkey on her and Joseph’s trip to Bethlehem to pay taxes,  Yes, taxes have been around ever since there has been governments. How would you like to have to travel eighty miles sitting on a donkey when you were nine months pregnant?   But Mary did it.  It was foretold thousands of years before that a virgin would give birth in the town of Bethlehem so she was destined to go there by whatever mode of travel.

I love this little donkey.  One year little hands dropped this donkey and then hid him under our couch where I found him with an ear off.  David glued it back on and you can barely tell it was ever broken.  Now I put this nativity up high where little hands cannot touch.


These cats did not come with the nativity, but I know from experience there are always cats in a barn where there are cows.  My daddy use to spray milk right into our barn cats’ mouths straight from the cows’ udders.  I always thought that was so funny.

I hope you are looking forward to Christmas as much as I am.  Christmas will come whether there is a tree or gifts under the tree or a big dinner.  It’s all about the spirit.  I plan to spend a little time with Jesus this season enjoying His goodness and light and I hope you know Him and if you don’t, I hope you meet Him one day.  He loves you and cared enough for you to die for you.

Peace, joy, and love to you all.  Bye.




‘Twas days before Christmas

And all through the house,

Not a creature was stirring,


Not even my spouse.


The chickens were nestled


All snug in their beds,

While visions of juicy worms

Danced in their heads.


Balloons were hung on the ceiling with care,

In the hopes that our grandchildren

Soon would be there.


And I in my Santa hat,

And Dave in his socks,

Were roaming the house,

And checking the locks.

When out on the lawn

There arose a great noise.

“What is it?” I wondered.

It’s our grandboys!



With balloons on their heads,



And balloons on their ears,

They made me laugh so,

It brought me to tears.



Our granddaughter, too, got into the act.



And looked just as funny,

It’s a matter of fact.


Little boys wrestling.



Little boys giggling.



Little boys laughing,

And little boys wiggling.

They were silly and fun.

Quite funny I’d say.

I love them so much,

I could watch them all day.



But then in a twinkling,

They had to go home.

Which gave me the idea,

To write this new poem.

But I heard them exclaim,

As they drove out of sight.

“We’ll be back soon, Grandma.  We love you.  Good Night!”



Predator Alert!

I love my chickens.  Anyone who knows me knows I love my chickens.  I have nursed one chicken back from death’s door and seen her go from a crippled, barely able to feed herself chicken, to a fully recovered, scratching, pecking, running, happy chicken.

Each of my chickens has a name and her own personality.  I can’t imagine anything happening to any of them.

Today I saw a striped cat on our front porch.  The dogs have been having fits the past few days and I thought it was just the squirrels that were driving them crazy.  One night last week I was outside at night and saw something slink away by our driveway.  I wasn’t sure what it was at the time, but now I know.

I heard Freedom throwing a fuss in the garden this evening.  Yes, I know it was Freedom.  I recognize each chicken’s clucking.   I thought maybe she had laid an egg, but when I went out to look, Freedom was gathering all the hens in one place chuttering up a storm. Freedom has designated herself as the watch chicken.  I know that because she does a walk about the chicken yard each night to be sure everyone is in the coop. She had all the chickens gathered together and was squawking.  Then I saw it.  The cat. Sitting on the fence overlooking the garden.  Watching my hens.  Tail switching.  I ran over and yelled at it and banged on the fence.  I have a feeling it will be back.

Later, I took a flashlight out and scoured the area.  The girls were already shut up tight and safely in their coop.  They have no idea what is out there waiting to tear them limb from limb.  I will have to keep vigilant.  I am telling the dogs to “sic” the bad cat.  All you cat lovers, I love cats too, but not when they are stalking my chickens.  Bonnie and Belle have been put on cat watch.  I will have to check the chooks more often now.

Maybe I will have to fit the chickens with vests and helmets to protect them from predators.  This will not end well for the cat should it kill one of my girls.  I’m thinking a trap set up to catch it might be on my list of things to buy.

If you have any suggestions about how to keep cats away from chickens, I would love to hear them.  Bye.

What happened to Thanksgiving?

I love Thanksgiving.  I love my family gathering around the table to eat a feast that I have spent days preparing.  After gorging ourselves we then gather around the table to play games. Right now Dizzios is the game of choice.

I don’t like stores being open on Thanksgiving.  We Americans need at least one day when we are not out shopping.  A time to reflect on our lives and thank God for all our blessings and we surely have a lot of blessings in this country.  Do stores really need those extra dollars they make on Thanksgiving?  Do people really need to be shopping every single day of the year?

Maybe some just love shopping so much they cannot go one day without doing so.  When I see the crowds pushing and shoving on television, I wonder what is so important that you would push other people aside to get it?  I cannot think of a single thing that is that important to me.  People are what is important to me. If I have to fight for something to get it, then I don’t want it.    Someone else can have it.

Now I will step gingerly off my soapbox and tell you what we did this Thanksgiving.

First, I prepared for the day.


I hung up my Thanksgiving towel I had embroidered.


I made good homemade noodles from my eggs from my beautiful, free range, healthy chooks.



I set the table with my Americana Pfaltzgraf dinnerwear.  Did I spell Pfaltzgraf properly?    They don’t make the Americana line any longer.  The plates sell for thirty-five dollars a piece now.  I can tell you I bought them for a lot less when they came out.  I also used my mother’s hobnail glassware which is not in this picture.  We used it on special occasions when I was a girl.


I love holiday napkins.  I have quite a collection of them from several years buying them.  Why don’t I use them up?  They are too pretty for every day use, that’s why.



My Jim Shore Thanksgiving angel was the centerpiece.  I love her.  I love all of Jim Shore’s things.  They all have a quilt pattern on them.


I got to hug these two boys a lot and play games with them.  Wish my other grandchildren could have been with us.



We prayed.  We ate.  The chickens ate potato peelings so they were thankful, too!

By the way.  A friend saw something that reminded her of me.  What was it???



Gummy chicken feet.



And gummy chicken eggs.  If a friend is reminded of me when she sees gummy chicken feet and gummy chicken eggs, then all’s right with the world with me.

Then the day after Thanksgiving we jumped feet first into the Christmas season.  I know, the stores have been trying to get us into the Christmas season earlier every year, but at our house Christmas season does not start until after Thanksgiving.



I got out our Christmas pillows.





I have way more pillows than I have room to put them.  I love making pillows. I made that big I believe Santa pillow from a t-shirt I bought at Target.  That curve at the top fits your neck very nicely and it is so comfortable.


I have a small collection of snowmen and put them on the dining table.



A collection of Santas on the pie safe in our entryway.

I have a nativity scene by Jim Shore I will have to blog about separately.



Love the rustic look of this Santa.



This is one of my favorites.


Haven’t got our real tree up yet, but put this ceramic tree in the living room.  When I babysat years ago, one of the mothers gave me this for Christmas.  I still love it and put it out every year.


And of course, quilts on the back of all the chairs.  This is my chair with my blankets and a quilt I am working on right now.  I can settle in for the night here and be very comfortable and happy.  Then we decorated my shop, but that will be for another day.  Bye.