Thursday, December 29, 2016

Rockin' and Rollin'.........

This will be short as I was up at 3:00 this morning and I'm still going!  But not for long I'm afraid.....I was so grateful though because I got up and got going and pressed Bob Ross who I had washed yesterday and he was dry this morning.  Then I found a frame that I had bought for something else, cut a piece of cardboard the size of the insert in the frame and mitered and sewed the corners around the cardboard.  I amazed myself but I think my angels were helping me!  I got it in the frame (just barely) wrapped it in bubble wrap found a box and wrapped the box and then loaded up 2 more boxes with the 2016 Collectible Ornaments, Chex Mix, Christmas cookies which are spritz cookie press cookies that used cream cheese, cinnamon and orange zest.............yes, I cannot tell a lie....they are delicious!  Recipe is here
Taped up the boxes including a container of that great Palmetto Cheese Spread I told you about, labeled and addressed the 3 boxes and drove to the next town and had them in the mail by 10:00 a.m.!  Woo Hoo !  Then I stopped by the market for a couple things came home and had breakfast and then got going doing some cleaning !  It's been a great day but I am fading fast now! LOL!
So glad to get those off in the mail!  Now I just have the garbage guy and the postman when they come next Tuesday. I might get up to a lot of mischief now that most of my Christmas is taken care of....oh, but I have cards yet and some more cookies to fav's Russian Tea Cakes...they go by a million different names but they have crushed almonds and they're rolled in powdered sugar....some call them snowballs.
Here's Bob in all his glory....I think my son will be very surprised when he opens his gift.  I hope he likes it!
Happy Trails!

Another book, sales, Christmas cookies and gift making

There was one more book I forgot to tell you about...........
This is the first book in a series of books about a young boy who survives in the wilderness.  It is for middle school age or even 8 or 9 and up maybe. I got it on Thrift Books  I read the second book, Brian's Winter and loved it.  Children's books with awards are usually books with awards not so much.  I love books on survival and self-sufficiency and relying on your own wits to survive.  It sounds like real life to me! LOL!  I haven't read it yet but if it's anything like the second book it will be good.
I got a little done on my Jingle's sock but not much.......I have finished the cuff and it's 6 inches of straight garter (knit) stitch now which is nice and relaxing and t.v. worthy.
  I had to put it aside (per usual) as I have 2 birthday presents to make for my son and SIL in January.  I decided to make them house slippers; a free pattern on Ravelry that Jaclyn of the Brooklyn Knitfolk podcast has been making and gifting for Christmas presents.  The only thing I would like to do different is get some kind of non-slip something for the bottoms.  If you know of anything or have used something like that for slippers please let me know.  I would appreciate it.  You knit these on circulars but back and forth for the back of the slipper and then join in the round for the front and then seam up the back with a mattress stitch.  She said it was easy and fun and she made 3 pair so she  must have liked making them.  They're also very popular on Ravelry.
I finally got some Christmas cookies made last night.....I know, I am slow like a slug and I have yet to adjust for my "slowing down" but I'm getting there, I hope.   I also washed Bob Ross and today I will press and frame and get more packages off in the mail.  This Christmas has been in 2 stages....first the goods and then the goodies!
Are you enjoying the aftermath of Christmas?  I got in on one sale; Craftsy had all their classes on sale and I got the Home Yarn Dyeing course but have yet to even look at it.  It was half-price and I had been eyeing it for awhile.  If you sign up for their newsletter they will notify you when they have sales.  They have lots of free patterns and classes in just about anything you might be interested in such as cooking, baking, photography, and jewelry not counting supplies for it all.  Right now they have 70% off of kits, fabric and supplies until the end of the year....which is getting mighty close!
 Do you have plans for the New Year or New Years Eve?  I am missing the football and sports....dang it! But I will persevere and not renew my satellite until maybe after I move....I am determined to move sometime before it's too late, I hope! LOL!  Downsizing does not come naturally to me.
  BTW, Jingles, the Christmas cat is really lonely and cries when I go over there.  I feel so bad for her and she's hardly eating at all.  It even looks like she's lost weight....not good but she is eating the treats I bring her and she's drinking as I can see by cleaning out her litter box.  Her Mom won't be back until the 5th of January so I pray she will be alright....poor thing.  She needs a cat buddy!
Happy Trails!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

More gifts............

I am not one for perfumes but there is one that I do love and it's because it smells fresh and clean like soap and water freshness.  It is by Philosophy and is called Amazing Grace and it is...........
I have been without it for several years now and I missed it.  So, I bought myself some and I am so glad I did.  I love it and it makes me SO happy!

I  have been searching for a long time for some books that were out of print....and I finally found them at a reasonable price.  They are big "cocktail table" books and those are usually pretty pricey.  
These 2 books were written and photographed by Archie Lieberman and I wasn't even aware they existed until a few years ago.  They are a photographic journey through the life of a farm family that farmed in the same area where I grew up.  In fact, he started photographing the Hammer family about the time I was 5 years old and the Hammer son was 13.....he would be 86 this year.  I wonder if he's still alive?  How I would love to sit down and talk to he and his wife if they are still living. 
The book is called Farm Boy.......
Here are just a few of the photos but there is also text throughout with a history of Jo Daviess County and also a brief description of how the glaciers formed this beautiful part of Illinois.  For me, this book was like visiting my childhood all over again.  The activities, the farm, the animals and most of all the people.  I was beginning to think that I had maybe romanticized my childhood and maybe it wasn't really as great as I remembered it.  But this book confirmed my memories and these people really were that kind and gracious.  It was the greatest Christmas present I could have given myself.....a trip home.

I was 5 years old when he started photographing this family and the book was published in 1974, I think.  He went back several times a year and took pictures for a span of 40 some years.  He went there at first on an assignment to photograph the daughter who had won a Singer Sewing contest but ended up being entranced by the simplicity and genuine lifestyle that these people lived.  Their hard work and yet their joy in it amazed he asked if he could come back and he did.....again and again trying to capture with his camera what these people emanated from their souls.....a hard work ethic, unshakeable faith in God and love for what they did!  Did they have problems....sure....but they were always able to rise above anything that tried to bring them down.  These people were the role models I had growing up.  I am so thankful for having been led to these books....and now I have proof that my childhood was not just a fairy tale!
He wrote 2 books about the area where I grew up and I haven't started reading the second one yet but here it is..............another big book.............I'm pretty sure the man in this photo is the boy in the one above.........
I am so grateful I found these books and I will cherish them forever and hand them down when the time comes.......but for now I will keep them close so whenever I get homesick I can open those pages and go back home.
Happy Trails!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas dinner a day late........

It's fine though as I was on the phone quite a bit  yesterday and so I just postponed it until today.  Don't worry....I feasted on lots of other snacks and goodies! LOL!
So,  today I made a scalloped corn casserole......

sweet potato casserole...........
 I know there's a lot of marshmallows there but they were going stale so I thought I would just use them up........
and a little boneless turkey roast...........pitiful looking isn't it? But it was all yummy!
 I finally finished Bob Ross!  Now, I  need to wash, press and frame.....
 I cast on my Christmas socks on Christmas Eve........
I'm calling them my "Jingle" socks in honor of Jingles, the Christmas cat (who is doing fine by the way but misses her Mom, I feel so bad leaving her all alone there for days on end) you can see I have done very little but I did cast them on on Christmas Eve!  I'm loving how they're looking so far...really traditional Christmas colors.
 I got some awesome presents from my daughter.....she should be a professional shopper!
 She knows I love lights and she got me some mini lights and mini ornaments for my mini tree!
 organic hard this darling little purse cute.......
 A card making kit!  I have always wanted  to try making my own cards....I hope it came with instructions! LOL!
 Sam and Grayson got me hot cocoa...caramel cream and French vanilla....yum!  I knew the one with the bear was from Grayson as he and Grandma have a fondness for bears....
But the very best present of all was this.........
Pictures!!!!  What Grandma doesn't love pictures?  This is the first time they've had a family picture taken and I love it! The other pictures are from school and are more recent.
  Sam is looking so much older than his 9 years. They're growing up fast and like their Mother I wish they would stay little for longer!
I hope you all had a wonderful day yesterday and I hope it lasts the whole year through!
Happy Trails!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas!!!!!!! Happy whatever you celebrate at this time of year!!!!!

That's me on the porch with a grandson and one of my horses.......I wish!  Christmas is a time to remember those we love and those we and beyond and also to celebrate our savior's birth.  I hope you had a wonderful day and I wish I could have welcomed all of you to my door!
Love to all of you!
P.S.  If you get too sentimental or nostalgic just listen to "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer" of my favorite songs! LOL!  That will snap you out of it!
Happy Trails!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas Eve 2016

 This is what it looked like outside this morning.  I think Santa will need to definitely have Rudolph in the lead this Christmas least over Arkansas!  It cleared off later but tonight there will be more fog as it is warm and wet here.  It was 57 today and tomorrow 65...can't even have a fire in the fireplace when it's this warm.
It was really pretty with the raindrops hanging off the trees...........I wouldn't have wanted to be out on the road though!
I spent the day making Chex Mix.....3 batches of without nuts for the allergic Grayson.....and we're talking a serious life-threatening allergy to peanuts.   The Chex Mix below was made after I made the nut free and had it all packaged up.  I wouldn't even get the nuts out of the cupboard before that!

I cross stitched in between............almost done......still late but hey......I'm old!  I'm lucky I can see to do it! LOL!  The quote is not referring to my cross stitch either.
I took some cat treats over to "Jingles"'s Christmas after all!  My girls are addicted to those Friskies Party Crunch treats......they're like addicts......all I have to do is shake the container and they come running.  So now I'm a cat treat dealer.....getting the neighbors cat hooked on them! LOL!  Wait  until she comes home and Jingles goes through withdrawals....oh, I'm so bad.
Tonight is the Little Bobbin's Christmas Eve Sock cast on!  I am ready!  I got my yarn a while ago....West Yorkshire Spinners 4 ply Signature yarn, 75% wool, 25% nylon and 35% Bluefaced Leicester.  I can't wait to use this yarn.  It is fingering weight and 437 yards so there should be plenty even with my big feet!  They don't have a color name just a number 06 -886-2249.  I will call them my Jingle socks in honor of Jingles, the Christmas cat.  I am using my 2.75 mm Karbonz DPN's which I love.
I never got the Christmas cookies done but there's tomorrow, hopefully, or the next day!  Christmas is a season after all.   Tonight is cheese, summer sausage, crackers, Chex Mix and a little of this..........
eggnog,  rum, stir, put it in the microwave and when it comes out grate some fresh nutmeg on it.  I always use spiced rum for this drink.  I think Ill get my jammies on and watch some Christmas movies and of course, follow Santa on his trip on the Norad Santa Tracker.  I have to ensure I am asleep before he gets to Arkansas!
Happy Christmas Eve!  And don't think for one minute that I am not eternally grateful for the true meaning and reason that we celebrate this holiday.  Blessings to all of you and peace on earth.
Happy Trails!

Friday, December 23, 2016

2016 Collectible Ornaments!

Okay, so maybe they're only collectible by my grandchildren but I try! 
The Mary Engelbreit tags are cuter than the ornament but I'm just not as talented as she is.
I also worked on Bob Ross today and hopefully that will be finished over the holiday.
In the evening I am too tired to concentrate on anything but mindless projects of which I need more! LOL!  I did not get the Chex Mix done today or the cookies but I did do laundry and took care of the neighbor's cat whose name is Angel but I am calling her Jingles, the Christmas Cat! LOL!  I feel bad because she misses her Mom so I stayed and spent some time with her and petted her and talked to her.  My neighbor uses a diaper pail lined with a plastic grocery bag to clean out her litter box daily so I am doing that now too.  Great idea!  I used to clean it out but I would double bag a plastic grocery bag and hold it while I cleaned out the litter box (I have 2 of them).  A pail with a lid is much easier and then just take the bag out when it gets full.  Brilliant!  And it is much easier than trying to get it into a bag you are holding.  The pail keeps the bag wide open.  Why didn't I think of that?
Anyway, I did start defrosting the bird........
and the butter is softened for cookies...........
but the Chex Mix and cookies will have to wait until tomorrow as I am tired!
This was the sky this morning when I got up and sure enough it is raining's snowing in Iowa.  My son just called and he's driving through it on his way home and my daughter has strep throat!  It was her first day of vacation as a teacher and she had to go to the doctor yesterday.  She's got all the presents for the kids so that's good....teachers are good organizers!  Hopefully she will be better by Christmas Day.  It's times like this that I wish I was there to lend a hand and of course see the grands faces on Christmas when they open their presents but then there's Skype so that really helps!
I don't think there is a single person on my street that is home!  They're all gone for Christmas.  I can tell when it's garbage day and my can is the only one out there! LOL!  I hope you are enjoying this last day before Christmas Eve and Christmas.  I hope you got everything done that you wanted to and can sit back and relax! 
Happy Trails!

Thursday, December 22, 2016

I got a present from Miss Peeps!

Yes, that's a mouse and it is not a play one either....although Miss Peeps considers it one.  It is dead and I'm not sure if she killed it or Terminix.  I tried to get it away but she just wanted me to look at but not touch.  I have no idea where it is now.  I hope she took it back in the basement but where ever it is...we will find it when it begins to decompose and smell!  She was so proud of herself but the last mouse she caught I took away from her and threw it outside and I think she remembered.
 Grace looked at me after praising Miss Peeps as if to say..."remember before Miss Peeps came?  I got a mouse for you and it was a live one and I gave it to you on your bed and dropped it and it ran around and you screamed with joy!  Remember? "  And that my friends, is why my cats sleep in the basement at night!
 A bit more decorating is going on........
more lights on the tree and "a little Hope"......
 My retirement shack in the woods..........sort of, but the lights don't light up so it must be "off the grid"!
 Some repro vintage candles.............

 cards from Christmas's past.............
 candle light.......a must............this one is mulled cider....
 and some Christmas "supplies" in case I get around to sending out some cards etc.  I have such good intentions...........
 Now this really is a vintage card holder.......
Today I went and got my prescriptions filled to last through the New Year, at least, and I took the girl's (Nitty and Annie) bedding to the laundromat and washed and dried them.  My dryer is broke and I hang my clothes to dry either outside or in the basement but they need their beds so I took them to the laundromat for faster turnaround.  I also washed a load of my things and hung them in the basement.  We're supposed to get rain from now until forever from what the extended forecast says.
I also blocked the "star" ornaments and sprayed them with stiffener...they're still drying. I checked to ensure I have all the ingredients for cookies and Chex Mix for making tomorrow and I got my cookie press out with attachments.  I'll take butter out tonight to soften and that will be enough for today.
I'll get my pj's on and curl up with some crochet or knitting and watch some podcasts or Christmas movies.  What are you doing leading up to the big day?
Happy Trails!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Brrrrrrrrrr.......Winter is really here but I forged through it and went to Walmart!

It was 6 degrees F when I got up this bedroom was 63 degrees F. It is almost 40 degrees colder than normal for this time of year!  I turn the heat down to 67 at night but my bedroom is over a crawl space and is always cooler which I love for sleeping but not for all day.  I made my list this morning and went to Walmart for the last time this year, I hope.
I had to get a few extras too.....Grace and Miss Peeps got beds (which they didn't have) for Christmas.  It used to be Grace slept with me but now they're both in the basement at night and there are 2 chairs down there and I was going to make them beds but per usual....that did not get done.   Nitty and Annie each got some peanut butter treats that were not made in China from unknown or diseased animals!  I really had to look as most of that @#$% comes from China.
   These treats are in the shape of little dinosaurs!  Too cute!
I love this cheese spread.  It is made down on Pawley's Island down South somewhere in "the low country"?  I am sending some to the kids and grands with some Chex Mix and Christmas cookies and it will be in time for New Year's, hopefully. One of them is for MOI!  I think this is the only "gourmet"  item Walmart carries but it is really good!  It's got a tiny bit of heat which adds to the flavor!
This is the woman who developed it and sells it........she says "it has soul" and I believe her!  Yummo!
You might be wondering what these are.......well.they're tension rods............
and one is really long........the little one goes from 28" to 48" and the big one goes from 42" to 72"
Why you ask?  Well, when we had/have our ice storm(s) here, I thought if I could close off the family room with the fireplace I would be nice and warm so I had one tension rod for one doorway but I have a 60" doorway to the living room and another doorway into the hall.  So, I will put them up and if it happens again I will drape blankets over them and try and keep the heat in the family room.  With all the girls and I in one room and a nice fire going it should stay warm.  Also, I have candles to put under upside down clay pots to keep the pipes from freezing, hopefully.  I have a plan!
These candles and melties are just for holiday scents and coziness..........
The mulled cider is a winner and the others I am checking out.  I am comparing BH&G's melties to American Home which is by Yankee candles and their Walmart pricing which is cheaper and the product probably is too but I will test it out.  They're still more expensive than BH&G but sometimes it's worth it if the scent lasts longer.  We shall see.
Some summer sausage for Christmas Eve along with cheese and crackers and some eggnog laced with rum! 
So glad I had my cholesterol tested last month before the holidays! LOL!
I stopped buying coffee for my Keurig but I miss this coffee SO much so I am going to bring the Keurig back for the holidays and enjoy my favorite brew!
I got these cute little critters for $1.46 again.....salt and pepper shakers but they're going in my cheapskate Christmas village that is mostly from the Thrift Store with quilt batting for snow! LOL!
Some holiday movies that I have wanted to watch......The Holiday has an English or Irish...I haven't watched it so I really don't know, cottage in it that I saw the interiors for and it is my dream cottage!  I have no idea what the movie is about or if it's any good but I got Christmas with the Kranks in a 2 for 1 for $5.00 and I got the first 2 Harry Potter movies which are the ones I've read for $10.00.  It pays to be behind in things because by the time I get around to them they are lots cheaper! LOL!
So that's my Christmas entertainment this year.
I have all my ingredients from Thanksgiving dinner that I never made as I went to the neighbors so I am set for food too.  I do have to go get some wine and rum for the eggnog and canned cat food and dog treats which I don't buy at Walmart but after that and one last trip to the post office some day next week, I will be good through New Years and my birthday too!  Yay!  I do love staying home with my girls!  Let it snow! Or rain or whatever..........
I got a few cute cards in the mail too..............I still need to send mine out!
What are your plans this holiday season?
Happy Trails!