Idyll #495 - Good Tidings!

saucydog(z5MA)December 15, 2010

An alternate tydll? Baby It's Cold Out!

Carry on, friends!


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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,
Jack Frost nipping on your nose,
Yuletide carols being sung by a choir,
And folks dressed up like Eskimos....

Even though I'm not the greatest photographer in the world, I wanted to share our beautiful hoar (boy, I hope I spelled that!) frost morning with you...

Well even though I don't seem to get here very often, I often think of all of you too...with a big smile on my face.

I may have to dig out a picture of last year's elves Kathy, as I haven't gotten to the tree yet...

But with careful supervision from Scout... finally put the finishing touches on the outdoors...

I hope the pictures can tide me over until tonight...I'm working this afternoon and have to finish readying the crock pot pot roast for dinner tonight. Sis is coming and it's her favorite. She is, I'm afraid, fighting another battle...but hanging in there...would want to tell you more, but I have to rush. Oh and Scouty is 11 years old now and doing just fine. I count every day a blessing...especially considering how he came into this world...but more later. I hope all is well with all of you too...I'll have to catch up on some reading...


    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 2:14PM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

Kathy, I'm asking. How do you use Picasa? And may I visit your blog? What is a blog precisely, anyway? Lol you did say feel free to ask. Even if you just meant about Picasa.
Nice pics. I was curious about Chelone's place.

Lol isn't that where a stain alway happens. To women anyway. I read on the inet once that if you soak a stained garment in lemon juice and let it dry in the hot sun it will get a stain out. I don't know about an oil stain though. I haven't tried it as here in Vancouver there is only hot sun for a few months out of the year, and I'm outside in it, not inside soaking stained shirts.

Saucy I haven't kept up on all the conversation enough to know about your leaves, but if it includes creativity I'm happy for you. I'm so glad you can take the time to figure out what really works for you.

GB what did you suggest to the book club? A time limit on each subject of discussion? A written discourse on the objections to the choices? Or maybe a better voting system for what to read? Or maybe people take turns deciding on what to read so nobody is left out? I love guessing, as you can no doubt tell, but I hope you'll tell us of your suggestion. I'm sure it's just the ticket!

I would love a day with Debbie. Always nice to have a clean home.

Sorry about DD's family's being sick. Ginger tea always settles my stomach. And it's soothing to drink something warm. Maybe you could bribe Skyler's Mom with a year's supply of cookies?

Michelle I'd be there in a heartbeat. Could I bring my DH and DS and DS-inlaw. They love cookies. There'd be none left for anyone else of course, lol.

Sorry you lost your post Julie. A lot of us compose our posts on Microsoft word or the equivelent. I use Excel because I seem to get fewer errors. BTW, nice to meet you.

Kathy, I got question marks for my punctuation the other day. So I copied the posting before submitting it and pasted it on Excel. Then I pressed ctrl a and then pressed ctrl f to get find/replace. Then chose replace, copied the funny blackened question marks into the Find what: and put an apostrophe into the Replace with: slot, and clicked on Replace All. Anyway it was a quick fix. From now on I'm going back to using Excel.

Ei that's some beautiful hoar, lol. Ah love the english language.

Pretty decorations. I might have to just hang pics of other people's decorations this year to get the Christmasy spirit.

Today's challenge: Dreaming vs facing reality.

I struggle with the practical side of life. We're having a very difficult time right now. We're working, but people are slow to pay, and the jobs aren't one right after another. We have been working very sporadically for about a year, now. The world economy problems affected everything, even construction here in Canada, and our company, which was growing, took a deep dive. So I should be out trying to get a standard job. But I am so drawn to writing, necklace making, and crafting in general, that I struggle to do the less dreamer type things. I'm trying to sell my necklaces and hope to sell my writing some time soon. I'm hoping to piecemeal enough self employed things together so that it looks like I'm working in the real world, lol.

There is a place for dreamers, I'm sure of it. But where I don't know yet. So far I haven't really made any money off of my dreaming. Although I've gotten the basis for a book I'm writing, from a dream I had.

I didn't get much sleep last night, so I'm going to do all of my exercises and writing this afternoon so I can get to bed early tonight. I have to do everything on my schedule or that will mess up my 21 day plan.

Happy Days All,


    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 3:40PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

So nice to have Scout back visiting us. Oh yes, you too Ei!!!! The Christmas view of your home is fabulous.

Yeona, here's what I wrote to my book club friends: "If a book has questions at the back for discussion, why not talk about 2-3 of them before getting into what we did or didn't like about the book? I find that if people dislike a book, that squelches discussion. If there are no questions at the back, I'm sure the leader of the discussion can think of one or two ideas we could debate. Just my opinion....take it or leave it."

No amount of cookies will ever sweeten Skyler's Mom's outlook. Sadly, she is determined to be miserable and wouldn't recognize JOY if it landed in her lap.

I too enjoy ginger tea!

I'm not sure what dinner will be tonight...or even where it will be. We have an activity at 7pm, so I'll let DH decide.


    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 4:12PM
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Ei,your hoar frost is quite a contrast to Kathy's Stonewall garden pics and both are pretty. Wish I could have such a pretty veggie garden.

Also Ei your outdoor decorations are just right for your place. You are very creative. Sorry to hear your sis is having a difficult time again. I do want to hear about Scouts beginning.

Posting from the comfort of my new recliner tonight. They were delivered yesterday. I think we wound up making a good choice. Funny though that the two identical chairs are different in that one is softer and one is firmer. Not a huge difference but noticeable.

I still couldn't bring myself to walk today, just to dang cold. So I finished my book.
V, it was ok for a quick pick, but not really my kind of book. I prefer something with a plot or mystery if it's not a biography.

I made the trip into town today to pick up the nessecaries, mainly because the cats were almost out of kibble, and guess what I forgot. Drat! they have canned but they expect to have both.

My coleus cuttings on the window sill are not looking to happy. I've got my doubts about them making it this year.

Michelle, will you have a few days off after christmas or will Rick be on his own with the grandkids? I wish I could motivate Bob to finishing trimming out the windows in the basement. I think he is oblivious to it.

Time to go rustle up something to eat. No yummy cookies or snacks here. Norma

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 6:29PM
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The clock is ticking..tree moved from the RV to the garage (a step closer to installation) today being our only non-rain day til mid-next week. I fear my BILs will have a nasty drive down. Cleaning continues .

Ei , your decorations look mighty fabu-fabu ! I love the grasses still standing tall , the mailbox , and just the right amount of sparkle along you porch. Stay awhile !

Yeona: Download Picasa if you have not, it's free. The program is very user friendly and intuitive. I create folders for my photos in windows ..i.e. I have folders for Garden, Travel, Events, and General. By the way I have an external hard drive, all my photo files are there, I have over 12,000 photos, so the ext HD was essential. The folders and file are created and organized in windows, Picasa sucks those files in and gives you a nice graphical interface to work with them, including editing and creating web-albums. I use the web album to post here on the Idylls. In a nutshell, I upload the photos from my camera using windows, then I open Picasa to view, edit, upload to the web album , etc. It's basically a poor mans Photoshop. .. of course you can visit my blog ! see the link below. There is a very active garden-blog community out there, and I encourage you to visit those that are linked on mine. �I am a novice relative to many of the old-timer bloggers out there, but what better outlet for taking photos and writing about them.

Norma, I was so taken by the gardens at Stonewall- it wasn't a big garden at all , but the design was just splendid. I have coleus cuttings on the windowsill too ! They really need to be put in pots ; every one of them has a mass of roots. Lol, your cat-food debacle..I always keep one extra bag precisely because I can't be trusted to remember to when I buy, I always buy 2. When I empty one, I buy 2 more. One to show and one to go !

Time for dinner ..

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 10:06PM
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Made a boo-boo and forgot the link..

Here is a link that might be useful: Blog

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 10:52PM
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Yeona, I would love to see some pictures of your jewelry. I work with a very young gal who makes jewelry that is just so lovely. She works part-time in our office and spends the rest of her time with her baby and being oh so creative.

Kathy, I loved the Stonewall Garden photos. I strive to have a beautiful veggie garden - I enjoy it much more that way. I think I'm missing something with Picasa. I have the web albums but didn't realize there was something you could download. I'll have to check it out.

Norma, my coleus aren't doing well either. I have some in pots and some in water. I don't think they like my neglect. I don't think I'll be home when the g'kids are here except in the evenings. Taking time off during the winter doesn't thrill me much unless its to go to a warmer spot.

Ei, what a fabulous bunch of pictures. The hoar frost is always so lovely. Your house is decorated so pretty. I especially like the colors of the ornaments and the urn arrangement. I'm pleased to hear that Scout is doing well. It seems like he was having some issues earlier if I remember correctly.

I spent a bit more time on the farm books and have it mostly wrapped up except for these last days of the year. It's a good feeling.

I really should hit the treadmill yet this evening.


    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 11:07PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Good Morning Girls! Or are there any guys here anymore? I still remember that sweet man (unfortunately I don't remember his name -I'm terrible with names) who had the adopted son from Russia(?). He loved the blues...anyway, I remeber he visited for awhile....nice man.

Boy do I ramble...sorry. Anyway, just in for a quick pop before leaving for work. I need to discuss that with you guys (girls I mean) too... Could use some insight (advice) but that will have to wait until I can really write.

Norma...I had to go back to look at Kathy's pics to see what you, well if truth be told I probably would prefer that sunny view to mine. :-) Oh well, I'm a midwesterner and have learned to cope. I *do* love a little winter at Christmas time, but I could live without Feb & March for sure. Good score on the on the recliners. I smiled when I read how pleased you are...I can really understand because my hubby loves his recliner more than just about anything in the! I would enjoy a recliner too, I bet, except that I am so short that I have never found one that fits me right. My head is always jutted forward because the cushions hit me by the neck instead of at the back. So I'm relegated to be a couch girl I guess.

What are the "farm books" Michelle? Are you writing something? I bet you could write quite a neat book...hasn't your family always been into farming in some way? I find farm life fascinating and comforting (if you know what I mean)? I love the whole tradition of it. These days I've been getting more and more into "local" and natural and free range/pasture animals and of course, I've been growing my own this year too. First time with a decent sized veggie garden and I can't believe how rewarding it is. I wish I would have started years ago.

Speaking of which, I need to tell you all about what has happend to my backyard and all the downsizing (changes) in our lives. I wish I had more seems to be so crazy for me anymore.

Which reminds me...does anybody have a good appetizer and/or dessert they can recommend for me? We are going to a party this Saturday and I am suppose to bring both. Of course, time has completely slipped past and I have no ideas. Does anybody have something they would be willing to share...a family favorite that's fairly easy to make? I will have to go to the grocery store tomorrow and make it on Saturday, so it can't be too complicated.

Scout still has all his health issues, but they seem fairly controlled and he is happy and doing the best he can. He had lots of difficulties as a puppy. Born with a knee malformantion, low level Cushing's disease, low thyroid and now arthritis. A couple years ago I started making all his food (a turkey, brown rice & mixed vegetable concoction i came up with) and I honestly do believe that it has made a real difference in the quality of his life. If you had asked me a few years ago, I would have said he wouldn't make eight years I'm shooting for 25! :-)

Yeonna...I *love* dreamers. To me, having a dream is what keeps us going every day. I think that's neat that you are writing a book...*never* give up your dreams. Even if they don't come to is the journey that matters. :-)

Lol Bug...I don't mind playing 2nd fiddle...especially when it comes to Scout.

Well, I hate to cut this off, but I really have to go. I will be back though...

Have a wonderful day!


    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 8:37AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Ei, this is the world's easiest dessert. I'm making it for company tomorrow. I buy up cranberries now because I need to make this dessert now and can't find them after the holidays.

Crustless Cranberry Pie
350 degree oven

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups fresh cranberries, NOT the entire bag
1/2 - 3/4 cups nuts (walnuts or pecans)
1/2 cup melted butter
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Combine flour, sugar and salt. Toss the cranberries and nuts in this mixture to coat them a bit. Stir in melted butter, eggs and almond extract. Spoon batter into greased 9 inch pie pan. Bake 40 minutes. Test with toothpick.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 11:41AM
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Well hello Idyllers, looks like the old days here. I spy posts by Mary, Yeona and Eileen. How great is that? I'm considering this my pre-Christmas check in. It's going to get busy here for the next week and I wanted to wish you all a wonderful holiday. Decorations are up, gifts are bought but still lots of wrapping to do as well as baking. My dad and his new wife will be up from Georgia to spend next week and having four grandchildren is keeping me busier than just the two I had last Christmas. Bella and I have been having fun doing Christmas crafts and will decorate cookies tomorrow. She most always spends Friday nights these days and there'll be a Christmas movie and the reading of lots of Christmas storybooks too.

Yeona, I enjoyed looking at your link to all the Christmas decorations. The decorating is one of my favorite holiday things. Since I've had more time to myself this year I've been on sort of a theme of making decorations out of old music and book pages. So far I've made a couple different wreaths, woven stars, origami stars, old fashioned paper snowflakes, a couple of little Christmas trees and am now working on a paper garland of the 9 ladies dancing and 10 lords a leaping that I saw in a Martha Stewart craft book. It's been a fun crafting theme. Bella and I have been working on a (purchased) cardboard house (big enough for her to play in)and doing it up with lots of Christmas decor too.

I have to say you all keep your houses cold, lol. One of the advantages of having a tiny house I think is that I keep it warm enough that I don't have to do the turtleneck thing. Short sleeved tees and jeans for me most days.

We're part of the recliner group here too. We have two. Brad loves his and I put up with mine, lol. I'd rather have something prettier.

I'm drawing a blank on what else I've read so I'll leave Ei with a couple of cute and easy "recipes". I made these penguins a couple of years ago. They're easy and cute appetizers. I put a pimento strip around their neck for a scarf too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Olive Penguins

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 2:29PM
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Here's the dessert recipe. I'm going to make this one for our Christmas sweets table. I think these cookies are just the cutest thing and they look so easy.

Ei, your decorations are so nice! Glad to hear Scout's doing great and I'm so sorry to hear your sister is having a hard time again. I remember your Christmas elves with fondness too!

Marie, throwing up??? Not a good thing to walk into. Hope that's all over before Nana gets there!

I'll try to get back and see what you're all up to during this busy and fun week leading up to Christmas. But in case I don't have a Holly Jolly Christmas my friends!


Here is a link that might be useful: Melted Snowman Cookies

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 2:40PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Two milestones have been accomplished this week. DH installed the replacement light fixture that we purchased back in August (!) and I put an end to the chirping noise that was coming from our utility room. The globe on the light fixture fell and shattered earlier this summer, and of course the mega-box-store no longer carried that type of fixture. The new fixture wasn't outrageously expensive; it was just the amount of time it took to get DH to do the job!

The mystery chirp was slowly driving me crazy. The source of the chirp was a smoke detector that had malfunctioned and been replaced. DH did not know where he had left the bad smoke detector, but he also swore that couldn't be the source of the noise because he had taken out the battery. I had tried looking several times but never could find it. Tuesday evening my son stopped over and happened to move a box in the utility room. Lo and behold, there was the chirping smoke detector - with its battery still in it! You wouldn't have believed how quickly I pulled that battery. Blessed silence has reigned ever since!

Yeona, I appreciated your comments about dream vs. reality. I could easily be talked into quitting my traditional job, but of course the alternatives don't pay as well or as steady. Hm, how a big a herd of chickens do I need to make a living selling eggs? Hah!

I think I'll go to bed and dream of chickens. . .

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 10:23PM
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Ei, the "farm books" are nothing interesting just the accounting for the year. Actually, I'm a relatively new farm girl, only moving to the farm when I married Rick 14 years ago.

Eden, the snowmen and penguins are absolutely adorable! You always find the coolest websites.

Rick is gone tonight so I dined alone and then made some owl's eyes. One of the easiest candies to make but they sure are yummy.

Not much else going on here.


    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 10:35PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL) guys have to click on Eden's links (even if you are not looking for some recipes)...they are the cutest things! I agree with Michelle, really do always find the coolest sites. :-) I still have one of your craft site links from years ago, still in my favorites...The Artistic Garden I think it was called? I'm in awe of all that you have been working all sounds so neat. I hope you can share some pics of what you've been up to...when you have the time (no pressure) sounds like you are really busy.

And Bug...the cranberry desert sounds yummy and simple as pie (pardon the pun) ;-)

What a relief...I now have my appetizer and dessert all set. I'll be making those adorable penguins and the crustless cranberry pie for dessert. Thanks guys...I knew I could count on you!

Oh...sorry Michelle. I don't know why but for whatever reason I thought your dad had done some farming too. But in any case, 14 years of farming makes you a true farm girl in my eyes...I'm impressed!

Speaking of Christmas...Yeonna I haven't yet, but definitely want to check out your Christmas decorations link that Eden mentioned...I just have to find it now. It must have been in a previous Idyll? I need to go back and read.

Need to get to bed, early day tomorrow and my company's Christmas party too. Then off to do the grocery shopping and prepare for Saturday's party. I'm actually looking forward to that I have something to make! :-) Thanks again...

Good Night All!


    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 11:26PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Thought of you and your chicks V and Saucy and her bees as I studied the page below with Haiti in mind...

I think things are coming together here at last... Just need to bake and pack now... then enjoy our company for the next few days. Got a bit more knitting done too.

DD's family is slowly getting rid of their flu and struggling with strep throat now. Poor babies....

Thinking of all the Facebook friends and wishing them a delightful holiday too. (Deanne, Sue, Monique.....many more too.) Heard from Kaveh the other day too! He's in the midst of a move.

Here is a link that might be useful: animal page

    Bookmark   December 17, 2010 at 12:04AM
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The Christmas Tree is in the house at last ! Decorating will commence shortly. The rain has come in and will continue for the next several days. I expect some standing water issues this year- always bad for the lily and Dahlia bulbs- of course I don't know if they've rotted til they fail to appear in spring. I think I may have to assume the worst.

My Swan Island Dahlia catalog was in my mailbox last night; I made a list when I visited there last summer and look forward to the fun of making up my order.

Yeona, as I am off work for a week, I may try your Excel solution. This issue appeared quite suddenly maybe a month or two ago, and I wonder if the readers see the funky punctuation or is it just the posters ? I don't see the stuff on anyones posts but mine.

Eden, I can't imagine being in at-shirt right now- cold and damp . I turned the thermostat up to 64 and the heat has been running for an hour. Of course we had doors propped open when DS and I carried the tree in. I dislike having the house closed up, so I contribute to my own indoor climate issues. I have a door that I keep ajar most of the winter for Ted and Doobie to come and go. If I had half a brain I'd call a handyman and have a pet door installed.

Ei, so glad you are here !

See you guys tomorrow

Kathy in Napa From Portland 2010 From Portland 2010 From Portland 2010 From Portland 2010 From Portland 2010

    Bookmark   December 17, 2010 at 10:28PM
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A field full of Dalhias must be awesome in real life. Your pics are pretty great too, Kathy.

Well I finally got out for a walk yesterday. Just had to be careful to walk in the snow where it was slick. Today things seemed to have melted off a bit.

I just dumped the coleus cuttings that gave it up. Now I need to go down and water the plants under the lights in the basement. I'm in a lazy mood today though. Not good.

I bet most of you are hustleing and bustleing. (Bustleing or busseling?) maybe neither. Looks weird

I know I have things to do, but I'm trying to forget about them. Number one procrastinator thats me.

As you can see I really have nothing to say, so I'm outta here with a friendly wave to all. ~~~~~~~~ N

    Bookmark   December 18, 2010 at 3:08PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

If I were not a procrastinator like you, Norma, I would be bustling today.

Me, I am waiting for DD to arrive home. Should be at least another hour before she gets here. But that doesn't stop me form checking the driveway every 5 minutes.

We are going to a dinner party tonight and I am bringing an appetizer. I stumbled on the recipe below for cheddar pepper palmiers and am thrilled with the results. They're made with puff pastry dough, so I prepped and rolled the dough last night and put it in the fridge. This morning I just sliced and baked. I made one small change on the recipe because DH had just purchased 1 1/2 lbs (yes, really, one and one-half pounds!) of ground red pepper that was quite fresh and fragrant, so I threw in a little of that. The palmiers are beautiful and tasty and all ready to go.

We still haven't cut our tree, since we are waiting for DD to do that. But the rest of the decorating is done. And I think the Christmas plans are falling into place. It's been a tricky year, with a newly-engaged niece and other small complications, but it will all work out and be fun. Or else.

She's here! Bye

Here is a link that might be useful: Cheddar Pepper Palmiers

    Bookmark   December 18, 2010 at 3:48PM
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A quick hello from idle Idyll-land. Here's how it is: I'm not thrilled with work these days but have be pouring a lot of energy (money, too) into the Salon. Not much time for Idylling, but suffice it to say that I've been having a great time here. I alternate between fits of outright panic (what the -uck am I thinking?) and a most pleasant sense of contentment that everything will be just fine, thank-you very much! I figure it will be somewhere in between. :) Mostly, though, I'm doing a lot of grunt work.

1.) I've sorted through all the fabric that was folded and "stored" on the workbench in "my" garage bay. I measured the width of goods and the yardage of every piece. I rolled it neatly and stored it in clear, lock top storage boxes that now reside under my cutting tables (4, so far, may need 1 more to complete the "mission"). I culled the stuff I'll never use for donation. I gave a ton of stuff away to friends who like to sew. I haven't touched the stuff in the house, but I'm "good with that" for now.
2.) The track system that carries the gravity feed iron (and extension cords) the length of the two 96"Lx72"W cutting tables is in place. As are the 3 equally spaced ceiling mounted electrical outlets (courtesy of my ever supportive brother).
3.) Pads and canvas covers for the 2 cutting tables are made and all snaps and studs have been installed. The covers may be easily removed for regular laundering (a design coup, I believe); the 1/2" homosote base and 1/4" polyester bonded "pad" can be removed and stowed "below decks" when I want a slick, smooth cutting surface.
4.) Christmas decorations are up, after a marathon weekend of "Christmas cheer" last week. Our tree is up and looks beautiful, even though there is no "topper" or an attractive skirt (yet). Ei., your house looks sensational! I am really enjoying the addition of one Advent candle with every passing Sunday. Does anyone add a blue one for Christmas?

The Compound is warm, and so is the Salon. I'm with you, Eden, being cold is a real drag, so is the electric/oil/gas bill to keep it comfortably cozy. That's why we have woodstoves here on the Compound (they work when the power goes out, too). We touch them off whenever we're going to be around and want something warmer than 55-58 degrees. When I left the Salon at 12:30 today it was 72F. I used the oil-fired furnace to bring it up to 58F and lit the stove at 6:15AM, then turned the thermostat back to 40F; if I feed the stove a little later the heat won't come on overnight. I just lit the stove in the living room and we'll enjoy 72-74F until we retire for the evening. We burn about 3 cord/yr.. Indeed it does require planning and work, but we enjoy preparing for the cold season and what we don't have to pay out in fuel costs every year we're able to save/invest for the years when "doing the wood" will not be so easy/enjoyable.

No snow yet. I'm actually looking forward to some, but also like the freedom of movement no snow permits. There is nothing like good, vigorous exercise in pursuit of that fool dog to maximize exposure to waning UV! Nothing like a good walkie or some "ball" to take your mind off the cold.

That's all...

(except to add that it really pisses me off that the damned pop ups don't go away immediately. Jeez, I miss Spike!)

    Bookmark   December 18, 2010 at 4:06PM
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Christmas tree is decorated , mantle display is completed. Check two more things off the list. I'm missing a box .. I have two paper-maiche-ish reindeer that I bought at a craft store maybe 10 or 15 years ago. I covered them with moss and put a bow around their where are they ? Clearly I have another box somewhere, though I am pretty consistent when it comes to stowing the Christmas d�cor-part goes in the garage and part goes in my closet. Search and rescue mission tomorrow.

Chelone, I am smiling here as I ponder your industry. I hope when you get a moment you will share some photos of the workspaces in the Salon. When my BIL's lived out on the Mendocino coast , they used their woodstove almost exclusively for heat. While the temps there in winter can't compare with yours , it was foggy , damp and rainy all winter long. How nice that stove was - they had a ceiling fan to circulate the warm air .

Oooh V, I will definitely do this recipe ! thanks for sharing it with us.

All from here tonight..needing some dinner.

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 18, 2010 at 10:05PM
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Are the rest of you still having to view all the iVillage advertisements after you log in, too? How are you sidestepping this obnoxious BS? because I'm just about to vacate this site forever.

Has Spike resurfaced and started something new? (we can only hope).

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 9:32AM
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Chelone ,I am not having a problem with adss right now. Hope I don't jinx myself.
Please don't go away!

spelling yes , but not ads. Lol

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 10:08AM
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I'm logged in properly and still the ads. Is there something I'm missing or need to do?

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 10:13AM
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Chelone, do you have a pop up blocker (go to Tools on your browser)? I have a feeling that's why I don't see anything. It's an easy remedy that makes surfing the web more fun :)


    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 10:24AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Ask your BIL for advice Chelone. I don't have a problem with pop-ups (much) either.

Our company has just left. Now for laundry, packing etc... I am actually looking forward to Christmas this year! So far we have had several events including an evening with Stuart Maclean and a very very nice dinner out. We also stopped by to check out the Trans Canada Trail to "visit" Reed.

The snow is quite lovely! Today is Phoebe's third birthday and she has had several great romps in the fluffy white stuff. Crazy girl!

Perhaps I'll return later... For sure there will be photos to share upon our return. ;)

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 12:01PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

A quick response for Chelone. I use Mozilla Firefox for my browser; this is a free download and I'm a firm believer that it is more secure and less buggy than Internet Explorer. Then I have an add-on, also free, called Adblock Plus. I see no ads on my laptop. I don't have the Adblock Plus at work, and I do see the ads and they are quite obnoxious.

I'm putting the link for Firefox below and will put the link for Adblock in the next post. It's very easy to install these!

Here is a link that might be useful: Firefox

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 12:41PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Second link

Here is a link that might be useful: Adblock Plus

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 12:42PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I too use Mozilla, Firefox and Thunderbird. I receive their updates regularly and often...and this helps prevent many problems with spam, pop-ups etc.

Back to laundry.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 1:53PM
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Wow thanks V ! I use Firefox and have a pop-up blocker , but didn't know about adblock...very very cool ! I just installed and the annoying banner across the top of GW went bye-bye ...

Hooray !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 2:27PM
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Thank you very much! I will fart around with that later on.

I finished a pair of "jammies" for the helpmeet this morning. And I unearthed a couple of nice lengths of fabric for some Christmas shirts, too. I may start the layout before heading to work tomorrow morning.

I've just lit the stove in the living room, the tree is on, and this grey afternoon is looking decidedly more cheerful already. :)

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 2:54PM
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I think the menu plan is a done deal, though DS made the mistake of looking in the cookie cookbook-he wants to try making shortbread cookies again . Then there were some cream cheese brownies..sigh. I think we may need some of those too. My dreams of black truffles were dashed, 200 bucks for ONE truffle at Dean and DeLuca . Truffle oil will be subbed . I�m on the fence about the veggies, I think I�ll search Epicurious to find a nice broccoli/cauliflower recipe .

Raining all day- with about a 1 hour break late this afternoon, just enough time to clean out and refill the finch feeder .Guest room bedding is being laundered as we speak, missing reindeers were found , most presents are wrapped. Tomorrow the heavy duty house cleaning begins. DS and I are splitting up the grocery shopping (3 stores involved, lol) which will commence on Tuesday I think.

V, I do believe your adblocker has been a life changing experience. When I went on to FB this afternoon the sidebar ads were gone there too..No more suggestions for facelifts , wrinkle crap, �free� samples ad nauseum. You are my hero !

Happy Birthday Phoebe !

Waves to all ..

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 8:32PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

    Bookmark   December 19, 2010 at 9:36PM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

GB good suggestion to the book club. So simple, too. When I'm in a hurry it's broiled open faced cheese tomato and onion toast. I love the onions, but you could hold them if you're going to out for the evening.

Oh no, not strep throat. I used to get bronchitis and strep throat as a kid all the time. It was no fun. My home remedy for a sore throat is gargling Sage tea, and eating lots of garlic. No good for a kid, but works for me. I'm trying your cranberry pie. I love cranberries.

I perused the animal page, and love the idea. Did you see the preview for the movie Where is my Goat? They did a documentry on finding out where the goat went after donating it in their client's name. Cool idea.

Norma my cats are not spoiled enough. I feed them mostly dry with an occasional treat of tuna. I have always done it that way, so my poor deprived cats don't know better. It's because years ago I read that good quality dry was better for them, but I wondered about that, even then. I'll have to research that again.

Sorry about the coleus cuttings. I tried Brugmansia cuttings once and watered them too much, and that was that. I haven't really tried any other cuttings since.
I know what you mean about you DH being oblivious to repairs needing doing. The dripping tap in the main floor washroom comes to mind. I know many women would be able to replace the necessary part, but my DH says that it needs a new tap. I'm clueless.

Kathy, thanks for the Picasa info. I have fiddling with how to post pics on my schedule for this weekend. Thanks for the blog link. Very sad about Copia. Maybe no one understood what they were displaying, or selling? It took me a while to figure out that comments can be posted at the end of each group of pictures. I really enjoyed the pictures by the way.

I hope you find your missing decorations. Every year something seems to be 'missing around here. I have so much stuff. I'm a collector of Christmas Ornaments and Decorations.

Michelle I will post some pics with my necklaces hopefully after this weekend. My DD has an elyptical trainer, and uses it every other day. She says it keeps her on track exercise wise. I don't do any running or walking fast, but find I am losing weight with my yoga tai chi dog walking combo. Recently I've added belly dancing to the mix. I find a belly dancing clip and follow the steps. It's a lot of fun, no one can see me dancing like a fool and doesn't cost anything.

Ei I missed about your DSis. Sorry she's struggling again.

Hope we can help with your job dilemma. We're very good 'listeners' so when you're ready.

Great to hear about Scout's better health after his rocky start! The home made dog food sounds wonderful. I hear that all the time. People tell me that when they change the dog's food or add a vitamin the dog or cat immediately improves. I am fortunate that Leah, Romeo and Juliette, (the cats) are healthy, though Leah does struggle a little with hip difficulties. Someone told me that their dog was helped with fish and flax oil. It oiled the joints. It does help me with my joints, so maybe I'll try giving some to Leah. I use food for medicine on myself, so why not on the pets. It shows that if you give a pet the right foods, their bodies can work to heal themselves. I read once that scientists believe that if we give the body what it needs, it can heal itself from anything. I don't know if that's true, but I like to think it is.

Thanks for the comments about it's being okay to be a dreamer. It is tough to dream in the face of life's difficulties, but I'll try. This is my second whole book. I wrote one in my early 30's and still haven't written down the end, though it's been clearly written in my head for all these years. I think it's unusual to love SF as a woman, but I do. I love magic, adventure, romance, mystery, and science fiction in one story, which is even more unusual I think. But that's what I write about. I know there's a market out there for all of those, but together, at once, I'm not sure about.

Eden, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you too. Congrats to your father on his marriage. Great you get to spend so much time with Bella.

I do keep the heat down to 65, and bundle up, most of the time, but when DH comes home the heat goes up. As soon as he goes to sleep, hours before me, I turn the heat right back down. My son has an electric heater in his room. He wears t shirts and jeans.

Love those penguins, and the melted snowmen. So cute. I don't think I can make the snowmen out of dates, though. ;)

V glad to see procrastination about household repairs doesn't last forever, lol. I was worried. I know the feeling when a malfunctioning smoke detector, is 'missing' and chirping. That happened here, only it was under a pile of papers. That reminds me I need a new smoke detector. Mine never last very long.

V that's the dilemma about being a dreamer. I love being self employed, but hate being broke,but hate working in a traditional job. Reality check. I don't have much debt and our construction business is picking up. I'm getting dog walking and dog daycare jobs. I was hoping for boarding jobs, but none have panned out so far. My writing is coming along fine and I have about 14 necklaces made and ready for sale. More reality check. Although I have no idea where I'm going to sell the necklaces or my writing. :( Ah well I remain dreamerly undaunted.

I'm a selective procrastinator. Paperwork is my major procrastination. I'm going to try my 21 days technique on it. I don't know if it works, but if it does I'll be doing paperwork without feeling tormented it from now on.

Michelle I ate alone tonight, as Richea was working late. I don't mind it once in a while, but all the time would bother me, since it hasn't been that way for all these years. I suppose you get used to it. I have heard it's hard to adjust when people retire, and they're home together all the time.

Kathy, thanks for the pics. That's just what I needed, on these dark rainy Vancouver day. I wish my garden were more colourful. Dahlias are jewels of the garden. And I love jewels.

Chelone, sorry work is too much like work. Glad you have the Salon to build into your get away world, even if the price is steep and the work is hard. I'm sure it will be worth it in the end.

I hope you get rid of the pop ups. Maybe I don't because I too have firefox and another popup blocker. Although I still see the iVillage garden web banner, but no other banner.

I love jammies. But my fave nightwear I ever had was a his and hers night shirts my sisinlaw sewed for us. I wore DH's and mine until I wore them out. I wish I could sew. I don't think sewing is in the 'genes'. My oldest sister sewed for years and while her DH smartly wore what she sewed, it was not very well sewn. I got a c- in sewing in school.

One thing I've thought of trying to sew is a Christmas Tree skirt. I want a couple, or three, or four of two sided ones so I can have a different pattern every year. I think I will try to find the material for at least one of them this year. I think I want them quilted.

Glad you can save money on the house heating. We save money by not having the heat up most days. I read a whole bunch about wood heating when considering it during one of the many migrainy SAD years, which left us without much money for the finer things, like power. I worried a bit about reports that the smoke from the stove is particularly hard on women and children, due to smaller lungs and more frequent exposure. I then read that wood on a higher grate gave off more heat and less smoke. DH wasn't interested so it never happened. For all these years I've been dreaming of being off the power grid, by buying solar panels, having my own personal wind mills for wind power, and underground thermal power. Here's a bunch of websites about wood fires, and stuff.

Safer use of Wood stove

A quote from a website
"Another benefit of a hot fire is less smoke. Less smoke means a more complete burn causing less creosote build up in the chimney, reducing the risk of a chimney fire."

How to Build an Upside-Down Fire: The Only Fireplace Method You'll Ever Need

Grate heater

Cord of Wood

Ei here's the christmas tree and Decorations sites that I linked before.

Here's a site with cardboard and bamboo Xmax trees. The bamboo tree is my favourite so far.

26 Christmas Decorating Ideas for Your Home

Happy Birthday, Phoebe,


Here is a link that might be useful: Red flannel nightshirt

    Bookmark   December 20, 2010 at 2:23AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Good Morning Idylls!
A big Happy Birthday hug to Phoebe. What an adorable birthday card from Misty! :-) Bug the crust less cranberry pie was a big hit...everybody raved about it and it went *fast*! I didn't make the penguins because after reading the recipe further, I realized that it would take more time than I had. Instead I made my old standby artichoke and spinach dip. I was afraid that other people would be making the same..but luckily it was the only one there. :-) I'm saving the penguins for when we go to my son�s house on Christmas day. This will be my DIL's first time hosting a family dinner. I was just tickled when she invited us...hoping everything goes smoothly for her. I know how nerve wrecking it can be. It's going to be a real treat for me, as I'm usually the one who does all the holidays for my family. Anyway, she *loves* penguins (collects them) and I thought that would be the perfect appetizer to bring. I'm sure she will just love them.

We had a nice time at the party on Saturday, with a lot of new (to us) people and lots of good food too. I met a really sweet young couple. They reminded me of hubby and me when we were young. They are expecting their first baby and just bought a new home about 10 minutes away from me. They lived in the city and weren't sure how they would adjust to the move, but they love it. The conversation naturally led to my two favorite subjects; gardening and pets! They asked me about composting...a wonderful dinner how to keep their puppy from eating the compost. They adopted a Great Dane mix and apparently he thinks he's a horse and the compost is his feeding trough. Anyway, they want to come here in the summer and check out the big changes I talked about re my garden, as they just started their first garden this summer. I also met a very interesting gal about my age, who is an artist that is just getting back to her dream (after years of raising kids and doing the 9 to 5). She does oils and especially loves to do still life and landscapes and asked if she could come this summer to maybe do some studies here. With all the changes though, I didn't know that I would have anything for her to, but told her about Trudi and how Trudi use to have artists in her garden all the time. I'm going to give Trudi a call and see if she wouldn't mind - I *know* Cindy would be totally inspired! Anyway, I have a plan for my family room of painting a wall with a forest scene and I told Cindy about it. I'm supposed to email her a picture of what I have in mind and if she thinks she can tackle it I am going to hire her to do the work. I'm *so* excited!

We had an estate sale a few weeks ago and sold all our living room, family room, and guest bedroom furniture,along with tons of other stuff. We are seriously downsizing and looking towards our future dream of selling our home and buying that small bungalow I've always wanted. It will probably be a few years before we can move (until the market gets better) so we decided to do what we could do now to work towards our dream and started the purge of things we won't need, don't use. I was inspired after hearing a man talk about how he only owns 100 possessions at a time and that includes *everything*...right down to his toothbrush and toothpaste! Well, that's a little extreme for us, but I was *still*! I feel lighter already! :-) Anyway, Sunday we waited around all day for a man to come pick up the furniture he bought from the sale, but he didn't make it. Oh well, it gave me a chance to catch up on some reading and just be lazy.

Thanks for adding the link again for me Yeonna. I love when people share links of things they enjoyed. I actually would *love* the red flannel pj's. In fact, your link inspired me in the Christmas giving department. My friend Dotty would really like the nightgown with the lace (she is definitely a nightgown girl). She says pj's are too hot. I am definitely a pj girl. I've tried nightgowns before because I know they are more flattering, but I can't stand when I wake up in the morning and find the nightgown has ridden up to my!

Kathy...your pictures are gorgeous and help make me feel! Oh well, only 4 more months to go...

Thanks everyone for the well wishes for my sis. She is doing everything in her power to have a positive outcome. There have been set backs and treatment is being extended for longer than she had hoped. She was hoping to be finished before Christmas, but looks like we are shooting for early February now. Her strength amazes me and humbles me whenever I start feeling that my own life is challenging. I'm in total awe of her and what else can I say...she's the best big sister anyway could wish for...I am blessed.

Thanks too for all the compliments on my Christmas decorations...I *do* love cheery! :-) I keep thinking that what would make it perfect would be if I could paint life sized figures of the Grinch and Sally and the dog and some Seuss Christmas trees to stand out in the front yard...wouldn't they go perfect with the colors?! Yea, maybe I'll squeeze that in somewhere before next!

Speaking of projects...Chelone...*you* are amazing...what energy! I'm glad that (hopefully) your pop up problem will be resolved. This place would never be the same without you.

Thanks too V for the links. I definitely plan on investigating. I'm not having Chelone's problems, but I do *hear* the pop ups trying to pop up (if you know what I mean).

Norma...I'm doing the same...have tons of coleus and other things down in the basement under lights. I was able to take cuttings of some really neat coleus(es)? (how do you say coleus in plural?) from work this summer and I'm very excited about spring possibilities! :-) It is extra work taking care of all the cuttings, but I *do* love seeing something green growing in winter...especially since I am hopeless when it comes to caring for regular houseplants.

Well this is longer than I intended and I need to get moving. Guess I'll have to share the job dilemma another time....
Have a lovely day all! Ei

    Bookmark   December 20, 2010 at 9:46AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Mostly packed here. Still working on emptying the fridge. Off we go in the late afternoon only to arrive there at 2am their time. Oh well...

I may not have much time to visit with Idylls until early January. In the meantime I will be thinking of each and every one of you...even the missing. Happy Holidays to you all!

Love and Hugs!

    Bookmark   December 20, 2010 at 11:52AM
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House cleaning continues, while gazing out at the incessant rain. Lots of standing water , mud, moss. I was thinking today what a week off from work would mean if Christmas weren�t pending-can�t do anything outside and would be forced to address some of the lingering areas of concern inside. There are at least 3 rooms that need to be painted-two of them I can do myself, but others involve cathedral ceilings. The New Year weekend will involve another 3 days off , but Christmas will need to be stowed away. Time is hard to come by !

Bon Voyage �bug, we�ll miss you and hope you can check in upon occasion. And it will be fun to think of Saucy just a few hours down the interstate.

Yeona, I buy those little fancy-schmancy cans of cat food for Ted and Doobie, �Tuna Primavera with Garden Greens� etc. Cleary I am a chump. One of my co-workers pointed out that it would probably be cheaper to buy �human� tuna, and I expect shes right, but I�m not sure I am reading for the yowling that would accompany opening a tuna can at 5:30am. They only get a spoonful of the cat food, I make those little cans last two days.
When I had my little dog, I fed her rice, chicken thighs and peas, all of which I cooked myself once a week. Diabetes is becoming more and more common in dogs, and If I ever have another . very close attention will be paid to the menu. The expense of needles and insulin would more than offset the cost of buying better �real� food. My parents raised show dogs back in the very early 60�s and those dogs were fed raw meat mixed with a little kibble and cottage cheese.

Ei, the purge thing has really been on my mind, and I hope to work on some of the problem areas this winter. The garage is by far the most dreadful mess, and every morning when I go out and get in my car to go to the awfice I�m faced with the disarray. I think I�m going to have to do the dumpster-rental thing again this spring. A trip to the electronics recycling facility is a must too.

Ok , going to kick back for a bit and then head to bed..nite all !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 20, 2010 at 11:59PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Yeonna...have you considered selling your necklaces on Etsy or Ebay? I have a few creative artsy friends who do pretty well with Etsy. I love perusing's wonderful to see the talents of so many creative people. I've avtually purchased a few things there and have always been happy with the type of people who sell there...very personable and low pressure (and in that way better than Ebay). Otherwise there is always the art/craft shows or consignment at a bead shop in your area or do you have an art league in your area? Just some thoughts...

    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 1:14AM
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I still haven't tamed the pop-ups (naturally, it's only on this site), but will recruit BIL and sit down with him for a careful once over and a switch to Firefox. The helpmeet uses it in the "hit factory", works best with his music set up.

Actually, Yeona, smoke from a wood fire is an important factor in how "clean" a burn you derive from your stove and how much heat you derive from each fire. New, EPA stoves actually burn the smoke generated by the fire. Our stoves are catalytic stoves; smoke is forced through the catalyst where it is ignited at a lower temperature than is generally attainable inside the limited confines of the stove's firebox. Typically, the temperature for smoke ignition is only obtained in the flue, thus the heat it generates is lost to the atmosphere (along with particulate pollution). In the great palaces of northern Europe, Russia, and Scandinavia the enormous thermal mass stoves attained their efficiency with interior baffled flues that were basically serpentine and delayed the exhaust of smoke adequately for it to attain ignition and release its heat to the thermal mass of the stove. Secondary burn tubes accomplish the same thing in other other newer models, where an influx of fresh air feeds the fire and superheats the exhaust gases. Both methods require clean, dry firewood for maximum efficiency. "Green wood" does the new stove technologies no favors, and is, frankly, simply a waste of time and resources; most of the energy stored in the wood is lost in the effort to burn off the residual water in the wood. Green wood is the number one contributor to creosote build up in flues, and chimney fires. We burn a lot of red oak and red maple, woods that retain moisture a long time. In our rather humid climate we typically have to "season" it for about 2 yrs. to reduce the moisture content sufficiently for good, clean burns.

I am counting the hours until my release this afternoon, whereupon I will pick up a few items for the helpmeet and beat feet home again. (jiggedy-jig).

    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 5:35AM
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Good morning! Nice to see Chelone's name above mine (in order, as things should be, lol).

Things have been busy busy here. We had our family holiday party on Sunday, and then the other side of the family will be Christmas Eve dinner (with lobster in the red sauce!). Nick is working double time to be ready when we're on vacation next week, and the kids have gotten their shopping done. I'm crazy from playing a supportive role in all of those endeavors :)

I got a new camera bag - a sling style backpack. I need to see if I can actually fit my camera in it and use it for our upcoming trip. I am hoping I can use it as my bag of choice (you know, throw a wallet and some chapstick and call it a purse).

I like browsing etsy, too. Yeona, local markets are getting big now, too. It's a spill over from the local food shopping :)

Hello Ei! Nice to see you. Your decorations are beautiful. It is nice to see Scout. I spend big bucks on gluten free food for Zeus and I've often wondered about just making something myself. It might work better if he required smaller amounts, as a smaller dog would.

I am so happy for GB and family. How fun to fly over and see all the babies and arrive just as the illness has lifted from their home (let's hope!).

I am having fun with the new twins in our family. They're technically Nick's 2nd cousins, I think (daughters of his first cousin). I enjoy rocking them to sleep while they're still little enough for all of that. They celebrate their first birthday in January.

After Christmas I'm hoping to play in the concrete again. I've got some ideas for little bowls that I want to try and small projects will be about all I can do without a heated space.

I'm off to get ready to face the mobs at the grocery. I'm hoping early will be best.


    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 7:47AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Time to represent the Midwest with a lunchtime post.

I started to feel run down and achy Sunday afternoon, and by Sunday evening I knew I had caught DH'S cold. I made it through half of the day at work yesterday and finally felt far too crappy and threw in the towel at lunch time. The good news is that it started to snow in the afternoon, and by the time the storm hit I was napping on the couch with the dog and not trying to drive home. After an evening of feeling crummy but a very decent night's sleep, I am blowing my nose like mad but not feeling too bad.

DS was sick with a stomach bug last weekend, and now we think it was part of the latest salmonella outbreak. He had lunch from Jimmy John's a day and a half before he got sick. Fortunately he is otherwise healthy and now feels fine.

We cut our Christmas tree on Saturday afternoon and last night got it adjusted and the lights strung. The tree is another monster and it broke the tree stand. The stand seems to be holding for now (and the tree is securely tied in two different places at the top) but I think it's the end of the road for the tree stand. It was a little hard to take all the antics with the tree when I was not feeling good. We still need to hang the ornaments. How many more weeks till Christmas? ;)

Yeona, I'm another fan of Etsy. I love the way that the site is laid out and I have had excellent experiences with my purchases there. I definitely would check it out for your necklaces.

By the way, the Cheddar Pepper Palmiers were quite a success at the party. I shall make them again for Christmas Day.


    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 1:34PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

I'm adding a link to some Elsy Blog postings to inspire Yeona.

Here is a link that might be useful: Quit Your Day Job

    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 1:40PM
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Pull pastry thawing on the counter in prep for V�s palmiers..I predict appositive response; this family devours anything having to do with cheese !

More later�2 more bathrooms to clean

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 1:44PM
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Good evening everyone.

The fields of dahlias are even prettier in December with snow on the ground. The colors are amazing!

I hope that all are well when grandma 'bug arrives. Enjoy your trip 'bug.

V, I hope you are feeling better before the weekend. I at the tail end of a cold but still have tickle which is rather annoying.

The gifts are wrapped and I've done what baking I'm going to do. The house is relatively clean. Its a good feeling. I do need to stop at the grocery store tomorrow. Snow is predicted all day Thursday and maybe Friday a.m. My mom is already worried about a repeat of last year's Christmas blizzard.

Kenzie was over on Sunday for awhile. She put decorations on the tree and decorated cut out cookies also.
Things have been a bit nuts at work and I'm looking to a 3 day weekend.


    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 11:38PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Dog-cookie Santa was delivering this morning to Misty's friends in the neighbourhood:

Blue went home on Monday but will be back tomorrow morning for a few days. Liam is visiting for today.

Cleaning-lady morning this morning, then Randy is doing some painting in the front hall.

It's definitely going to be a green Christmas here this year.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2010 at 10:47AM
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Woody, I can see the wagging tails at the sight of those bags of cookies.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2010 at 5:00AM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

Wow, it's amazing how much you get done when your t.v., telephone, and internet are down for an extended period! Christmas is almost ready and I can relax. Oh wait, I have dentist appointment in 20 minutes.....



    Bookmark   December 23, 2010 at 9:10AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)


This morning Skyler got to open 3-4 gifts which was fun., especially the HUGE one with a heavy brick inside with a note that said "Go to the garage and find the present. It was too big to fit in the box!" There he found a trampoline (small) and was thrilled. (DD did a great job spending very little and shopping on Kajiji.) We will open more gifts while he is at his Mom's, then more again at New Year's when he returns.

Tonight is DH's turn to prepare dinner, which means we eat out at DSIL's favorite Chinese place. I am sooooooo full of food!

Time to go help out some more!

Joy to the world!
'bug (with a mild sore throat)

    Bookmark   December 23, 2010 at 6:30PM
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Hi Julie, I'm happy you are back up and running or are you visiting from another locale?

Bug, so you got there safe and sound. Enjoy! Hope the throat doesn't get worse.

It will probably be pretty quite here the next few days with Idylls not being idle and those traveling ones. Enjoy your time everyone. Norma

    Bookmark   December 23, 2010 at 6:52PM
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Busy here too ..Dungeness crab picking, beef tenderloin tonight, presents etc !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 23, 2010 at 6:56PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Merry Christmas, Idyllers!

I just wanted to pop in before the big festivites and of course I started to get engrossed in the posts (to Stella's great impatience who's now sitting on my lap and licking the keyboard)....

So great to see folks back in - and I got stopped by many cool links and info just from this one thread - hope to catch up during the next week while I'm in official vacation slug mode.

I had those ad problems and logging in here today so I'm certainly hoping to avail myself of that ad blocker (since I definitely am getting the ads, Chelone - must be our punishment for not being faithful posters perhaps?)

Life is okay here - just busy and swamped w/ modern life and work and growing older by the minute that seems to impede my energy and stamina with coping. Enuf of that, LOL.

Stella is now officially in toddler mode having successfully (Finally) come up stairs all on her own - whew - now to teach her about going down them! She's enjoying the new toy standing in the living room -its' large, smells good and is green and she finds it a great tug toy and chase circle... it seems to have odd dangly shiny (very shiny) objects that must be new toys and treats on it too. And even a bowl of water under it -- wasnt that convenient for someone to think of putting some water for a dog to try to drink under there?

Looking forward to the first grandbaby Xmas -- piles of shopping await this elf's hands today - along w/ Stella's capable help I'm sure.

I am so excited to get the time to be back here -- so much to catch up on -- but for today

Merry Christmas to all and Hopes for a wonderful, peaceful holiday season with friends, family and enjoying Life!!


    Bookmark   December 24, 2010 at 10:44AM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

So nice to have time to catch up and read everyone's news. I, too, am on vacation all next week. I plan to luxuriate in all those days off.

Cimdy, we need pictures of both the toddler and the human wee one!

Michelle, Kenzie is such a pretty girl and she looks beautiful in her Christmas dress.

V, hope you are feeling better. No fun having the whole household feeling rotten.

Ei, love that picture of the tree with the hoar frost on it and the sun shining through the branches. Wonderful.

Woody, I am so impressed with the doggie cookies! Such a sweet thing to do.

Sounds as if you will be having a wonderful and jolly Christmas, 'bug.

Kathy, hope the rain has passed and Christmas dawns bright out there. We were supposed to get some snow, but now they think the storm has moved out and the most we can expect are flurries. Quite different from last year when we were snowed in! I am always a little surprised to see those pictures when everything here is dead! :)

Lots of returning Idyllers lately. New to me, so it will be fun to get to know you all.

Wishing everyone a warm and cozy Christmas and a new year with renewed health, fewer worries and cares, and lots of joy and laughter.

    Bookmark   December 24, 2010 at 4:09PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Have a Merry Christmas everyone!

We're just about to head over to Randy's brother's for reveillon supper.

Here is a link that might be useful: Reveillon

    Bookmark   December 24, 2010 at 5:28PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Michelle...Kenzie is growing up so fast. She looks just beautiful in her Christmas right out of the Nutcracker...

I gotta get to bed now...Merry Christmas! Ei

    Bookmark   December 25, 2010 at 1:29AM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

Merry Christmas everyone.

I want to Revilion. I'd have to do it on December 23, as we have Christmas Dinner on the 24th a la Danish style.

Thanks for the photos. Sweet girl, in a cute dress. Love the Christmas song and card.

I'm actually headed for bed, so I'll just say Merry Christmas to Idyllers and to Idyllers a good night!

Holiday Hugs,

Love to all,


    Bookmark   December 25, 2010 at 3:40AM
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I'm checking my computer one last time before I close the laptop and head toward the airport. We're heading to California as a family for Christmas this year and we've got a jam-packed itinerary.

I just wanted to wish all of my Idyll friends a very Merry Christmas. I hope to be good and update with plenty of fun photos. It seems a few gardens snuck in on the list of things to do :)

I'll see you in the New Year, if not before!


    Bookmark   December 25, 2010 at 1:56PM
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Happy Christmas everyone!!

Much fun here with Mum visiting from England. Presents included a box of Twinkies for David who has always wanted to eat one, and a Creme Brulee torch and dishes. We feasted on turkey with all the trimmings and will have snacks of leftovers throughout the evening followed by Creme Brulee - yum! We just finished a Scrabble game and are lighting a fire to sit beside while we watch Fiddler on the Roof. A slighly off-beat tradition that reflects DH's heritage and everyone loves.

The very best wishes to all!


    Bookmark   December 25, 2010 at 6:36PM
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I have done virtually no reading. Still dealing with pop ups but have not addressed the browser issue, either, so I have no one to blame but myself.

Snowstorm on the way, I believe... bay window awning came down this AM, I've stuffed the woodbox in the Salon, and stowed several items that were clogging the bahn.

Christmas was delightful here. Very relaxed and my decision to eschew "dinner" in favor of a day long buffet was embraced heartily after great initial skepticism. No pictures, but the sideboard did look pretty.
1.) under the antique cheese dome (my maternal grandfather's family): Blue Cheese and a lovely pate. Nearby, a genteel cracker and condiment assortment.
2.) in my maternal great-grandmother's covered serving dish a delightful fruit salad, with whole milk yoghurt nearby.
3.) Candy's delightful Crustless Cranberry Pie cut into dainty portions. (whatever happened to her, anyway?!)
4.) Devilled Eggs artfully presented on great-grandmother's china, too.
5.) Mimosas (coffee was earlier in the morning)

Later that same day:
1.) Cocktail shrimp
2.) Barbequed ribs
3.) home grown Brussel Sprouts
4.) an assortment of very posh holiday chocolates
5.) a reprise of the cheese, pate, and remaining devilled eggs.

I have received a TracFone. I have activated it, but am still fumbling with its usage. Pretty funny, actually. I also received a new hand mixer (yay! the old one died making frosting months ago). Also received, a battery-powered, illuminated pepper mill, and a book. Helpmeet received new slippers, wool socks, a music stand lamp, and handmade pyjama trousers and a "dress up" shirt. He opened those boxes and looked at me, "did you make these?". Uhuh. "They're the best gifts I could ever hope to receive".

Catnip bombs in tissue paper for the pride, rumba bones for Wrecks, and a large hunk of stew beef that has been judiciously dispensed.

Time now to provision the house for the coming snow... hmmm, what might we need before Tuesday afternoon?

Snuggle up, friends.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 11:03AM
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I'm so glad you all had and are having such nice holidays! Beautiful trees, decorations all round! The kids came over yesterday and today is a catch up day. I am so lucky to have you all in my life, I would like to thank you each for sharing yours with me!

Looking forward to more idyll adventures as the New Year approaches.

Stay warm!


    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 11:53AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Happy today dear friends!

I sit here with hot tea and honey and the tissue box. :( But all is quite wonderful with chirpy children's voices and squeals and giggles, family and food and good ole Indy dog. Skyler is with his Mom and will go skiing for 3 days in Jasper.
I think the plan is to begin the annual Christmas puzzle, once the kitchen island is cleared off.
Chelone, by "hand mixer", do you mean what I call an egg beater? I've searched for one for 3 years now...

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 12:02PM
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NO, 'bug! to me a "hand mixer" is an electrically powered device that is capable of creaming butter or whipping egg whites in a small, steep sided bowl.

I have at least one of the hand held, manually generated beaters. If you need one, I can supply one!

I have to say that the shot of Ivy asleep on the sofa in front the tree still lingers. And I am blown away by how grown up Kenzie is these days (where do the years go, Michelle?). I hate kids (and dogs) but I have to say that for kids, they're OK. (don't push your luck, Cindy... :))

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 1:03PM
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Good morning Idylls ! Nice to read of all the merriment both here and on FB. And I see both Scout and Ei�s elves came to see us. Good show !

Chelone, we always have a buffet ; it�s been our tradition for many years, typically on Christmas eve. This year we had to swap things around a bit to accommodate everyones schedule but it included V�s cheddar pepper Palmiers which were received with accolades �thanks V ! Oh, and re: Candy, I recall there were some family issues there and she had to 'be away' for awhile.

And it has stopped raining today, so we will venture out to a couple of the local antique stores , and a bit of a walk-about downtown , Mexican food for dinner and maybe a movie. ..and then it�s back to the awfice tomorrow.

All for now !

Kathy in Napa

PS . From what I hear re: weather , sounds like Saucy bailed out of NE just in the nick of time�.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 1:10PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

I sounds like everyone (except for the sniffling, 'bug) had wonderful Christmases. Love the musical (in my mind, anyway)card, Ei!

Chelone, I am going to steal your Christmas day buffet idea for next year. Sounds perfect! Hope you are all battened down and cozy-ready for what sounds to be a blizzard coming your way.

It is snowing here, but we are only supposed to get about 6 inches. The fire is crackling and I am quite content. Annabelle is up on the loveseat that needs to be recovered and Clouseau is in and out and in and out-he loves the cold, especially when there is snow.

Our Christmas was lovely, too. Quiet and fun-well except for the time the dogs (all three-grandpup, too)got through the fence to the neighbor's yard because they are dog sitting a couple of little yappy things-lots of excitement as DH tried to mend their rotten fence which has allowed ours to get over there. I suspect they will use this as another excuse to try to get us to share in the cost of a new fence. Ain't gonna happen. DS and sweetie showed up around 2:00 after spending some time with her parents. We had them until late into the night. When I can find the connecting thingamajig, I will post a pic of my favorite gift. I hope you all will get a kick out of it. I think my new year resolution had better be to organize all the accessories for the camera, computer, iPhones (loving it, but still trying to learn about it). Rather pathetic-if I can find the camera, I can't find the cable needed to download the pics and vice-versa.

DH wants to go see "The King's Speech" today when he gets back from his meeting. Guess I need to let the fire die down. :(

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 1:24PM
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We're expecting "our daughter the lawyer" later this evening. A friend of many years, she's now fully fledged, and the mother of the Wrecking Crew. One of our great delights is having our many, "far flung" friends "come home to roost" periodically.

Only in the past few years have I begun to contemplate the "temporary" nature of "family". On the Compound all parents are now dead and gone. And we're, "on deck". A sobering thought if ever there was one! esp. because kids are not part of the scene.

My appreciation for the bittersweet aspect of Christmas is heightened and, I believe, deepened as a result. I'm "good with it". At least for now... who knows what ensuing years will bring to my perspective.

Kathy, convey my warmest wishes and appropriate felicitations to my FB friends, willya? I miss them and just don't have it together enough to deal with it right now.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 1:43PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Oh, Chelone. It is a little discomforting for us to "be on deck" as you so aptly phrased it, isn't it? DH was so funny the other day when we were talking about something age-related-forget now what it was ;) - and he had this instant of complete shock when I said something about being so close to 60 (59 in April). His expression of utter confusion made me laugh. he said he never thinks of me that way (old, I guess) and he thinks of us as in our 40s still.

There are so many bittersweet moments these days. I wish you more of the 'sweet' side.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 2:00PM
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The esteemed helpmeet could begin collecting SS come spring. Interestingly, I am shocked because I think of "collecting" in terms of MY age... fully 10 yrs. younger than his! As has been historically evident, I'm aware of our age difference but on a more personal aspect; the age difference is rather shocking when viewed through the prism of tax planning. Isn't that funny?

Still, though, the difference in our ages presents some very real difficulties. Not the least of which is the "gap" with respect to health insurance. I see that we will "lose" coverage as costs increase due to our "cost" in the eyes of our insurer and our ability to earn decreases.

I never thought worry would increase with age. I now see plainly that we will have to make a calculated choice between paying for health "insurance" or saving for our retirement.

I am very afraid and am very offended!

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 2:40PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Chelone, I'm not sure the worries I have now are increased or just different. I do think they have taken on a greater urgency in that health issues can so quickly become so very serious. We just don't bounce back quite the same way as we did even 10 years ago. I am feeling better now that DH is "on the wagon", although when I recently asked him if he is starting to feel better now, he said that he just feels the aches and pains more.

We weren't expecting him to have to retire yet, so that is an issue to which we haven't adjusted since my salary has been frozen for two years now and my stipend for being a National Board certified teacher has become a casualty of the economy.

Still, we plod on just as you seem to be doing and with luck will continue to do so for many years. Can't let the bast@#*s get you down.

Oh, we did go to see "The King's Speech" and there is nothing not to like (except perhaps that Churchill is too jowly). I highly recommend it as a wonderful diversion and a bit of history (the speech therapy) that I didn't know. Any time I think of that period, I am so struck by the luck we had with our leaders then, both in the US and the UK.

Alas, now there is no cozy fire. I will wait until morning to start another. I envy those of you with wood stoves. Off to put on my jammies, and settle in for the evening. Yes, I know it is early, but I am desirous of total comfort at the moment. #@&* wish I had a bottle of B&B hidden around here to add to the eggnog! ;)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 6:57PM
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Hopefully everyone had a fabulous Christmas. Christmas eve and Christmas dinner were quiet for us with just my parents. We spent the night there since the roads weren't the best. My sister from Wisconson was supposed to come but the weather kept them home. Christmas night we had Rick's kids and families over. Things were far from quiet. Of course there was lots of good food consumed over the two days.

Things are quite lovely here with snow on all the evergreens and hoar frost covering everything.

'bug, you have company as I caught another cold when I was just about finished with the last one. Poor timing and its getting mighty old.

Cindy, did you act appropriately for a grandma and spoil that little granddaughter? It sounds like Stella is pretty entertaining.

Cyn, I'm jealous of your week off. What a great way to recouperate from the holidays. I keep the cord for the camera permanently plugged into the desktop computer. Although, I can now just plug my SD card right into my new laptop and download that way.

Ei, what fun so see your delightful elves again and the picture of Scout on the proch is perfect.

Mary, enjoy your time with your mum.

Chelone, your day long buffet sounds like something we like to do. I like a buffet, although a bit more challenging to keep things at the appropriate temps. I received a dip chiller earlier this month from a friend that will be a nice addition to the buffetware. My DH could have started the SS last year but has chosen to wait a bit.

Christmas and family...most of mine were absent this year with both kids and Kenzie all out of state for the holiday. It hit me a bit hard since last year was the same because of our Christmas blizzard. DH's children are all pretty much in this area and so all 4 and all the grandkids were present on Christmas night. I felt just a bit sorry for myself. It probably didn't help that I wasn't feeling 100% either. I was very thankful to spend the time with my parents though. DH's are gone. My mom was a bit down that my sister couldn't come, but was thrilled when we accepted the invite to stay over.

Drema, I echo your sentiment. I have made such precious friendships here. Each of you hold a special place in my heart.


    Bookmark   December 26, 2010 at 7:07PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

How great to see so many faces here...Hi Drema!...Happy to hear that Bug & Mary are having fun with family and sounds like Saucy is having a wonderful trip. And congratulation on the new puppy Cindy...she sounds like a sweetheart!

I have to agree with Michelle & Drema...even though I'm not here often, I think fondly of you all and very often. I too miss so many of the girls that have gone to FB. Family and friends have been trying to get me there for a couple of years now, but I can barely keep up with this forum, don't think I could fit FB in..even though so many old childhood friends, family and present friends are there now too. Heck seems like everyone is on FB these days...I guess I'm a throw back.

Chelone..I think I understand how you are feeling, my girlfriend Dotty has been voicing those concerns (her hubby is 13 years older than she). But I always like to remind her of my bestfriend Anita, whose husband is 18 years her senior (they married when she was in her 30's). Anyway, he just turned 80 and is still playing sax professionally in a jazz band nearly every week-end (he also writes music for other bands on the side) you just never know what the future holds. :-) Without getting morose I have to admit I worry about my son after hubby & I are gone, he won't have any close family left and I don't know if he & the DDIL will ever have kids (I'm okay with long as they are happy together - that's all that matters to me and they *are* two peas in a pod. I love how much they love each other :-) Anyway my parents are gone and my brothers and sister (who is pretty ill) are quite a bit older than me, so I *do* sometimes worry that there will be little family for our son when we are gone. Christmas sometimes brings those thoughts on, but I think of Dr. Phil's wise words..."Keep your expectations low for the holiday and then you won't be disappointed"! I know it's kind of silly and oversimplified, but I kind of "get it" too...another way of just saying live in the moment and enjoy. I really try to make an effort to live in the moment as much as possible, though of course I don't always succeed. Sounds like you did just that with your perfect Christmas buffet...I *love* of my favorite drinks...right up there with peach bellinis and cosmos! :-) I have to make a shameful confession...Champagne is the only "wine" I truly enjoy. I get ribbed for it too since hubby is a wine afficianado (sp.?...another sign of getting older...I can't seem to spell anymore...sigh). Anyway, one of my closest friend's hubby is a wine distributor. He is always bringing new wines to our house to try and I am totally embarassed that I can't appreciate it. I feel bad too because I know that a true wine lover would really find it all such a treat. Most of the time I just fake it and nurse my one glass all night and hope that he doesn't notice. ;-)

Well girls, I need to get to bed, but just wanted to drop in and say "Hi" and try to be *here* living in the moment as much as I can! :-) BTW, I'm taking my pics off PT. My subscription ends soon and I'm not sure if I will sign up again or not, so I want to get my personal information off asap.

Good Night All! Ei

    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 12:43AM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

I hope all of you had a lovely Christmas! It was a busy time, and my cold won a few of the rounds early on, but we had a nice time with family and plenty of wonderful food. My favorite gift is my new clock radio that lets me preset stations and has a dock for my ipod. A close second is the book Life by Keith Richards.

Spent some time yesterday at a party talking with one of my older cousins, Loretta. She's in her late 70's, widowed now but with 10 children she's far from lonely. She was reading the newspaper not long ago and saw a long obit for a name she never heard of. In her words, she decided to read it to "see what he'd done to make his life worth so many words." She learned from the obit that the man, who was 95 when he died, had been a doctor in Chicago and he and another doctor had perfected the technique for transfusing blood in newborns that had incompatible Rh factors. Loretta sat down and wrote a letter to the man's family, saying that she had never met their father, but his work was responsible for the healthy births of 9 of her 10 children. The man's son called her after receiving the note to say that it had touched the whole family. They had a nice conversation and found out that they knew some people in common. I thought it was such a sweet story.

Gotta run now. I'm off work for the week but lots of plans will keep my computer time scarce. Hope you all enjoy the week!


    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 9:24AM
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Greetings from California. Yesterday is a blur - I haven't slept in a couple of days (not a good sleep, you know?) and I had to use the photos to see what I did yesterday :)

We went to the beach and that was fun. Only tourists and diehards go to the beach this time of year, but it's something Nick and I always did when we lived here.

Today we're going to the USS Midway - an aircraft carrier turned museum. We're also scheduled for whale watching.

I used my Idyllunion planning skills to plan this trip and I think my family is impressed, so far ;) From Beach&OldTown


    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 9:29AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

EI - I just had to pop in to say you're not alone re wine... I'm not a wine fan at all! To me, wine smells - and tastes - like my grandmothers's 'preserves' gone bad! :-) So I just don't drink wine at all. Randy is fairly knowledgeable/adventerous with wine and just chalks up my attitude to wine as another weird 'Susanism'!

    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 10:56AM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Saucy, great shot. Glad the vacation is such a success. Can't wait to hear about the tour of the Midway-very cool.

Ei, you are so right. I worry about our DS, too, as he is an only and we are somewhat estranged from my sister's family. Lots of wisdom in your post. Also, just an observation-there is NEVER a bad time for champagne! :) Alas, none for me these days, but well worth it to have DH getting back to his old self. On that note, here is my favorite gift from him. I may keep it lit year-round (well, probably not, but it is fun!). From 2010-12-25

Blustery and cold here. Just a dusting of snow. Hope all the northern east coast folks are with power and cozy inside.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 12:37PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Fun to catch up with everyone! Sarah and kids are off grocery shopping with DH now, while DSIL is working on the hot tub. They all seem to be pretty much on the mend from their flu & strep...but I have been out of it for three days so far. UGH.

Skyler is skiing for 3 days with his Mom in Jasper and the house is fairly quiet! Ivy has learned to scream for the fun of it and it is ear piercing. I haven't been up to taking many photos yet but I hope that will change.

Once again, one of my favorite gifts was DSIL's chicken soup with his home made noodles.

I do wonder if Ivy is a true (noisy) angel. She is just so amazing... Have I forgotten my own babes? She's not yet 20 months old and has figured out which way books are read (right side up and front to back), how to put together several puzzles, how to dress herself, and also how to charm us all. Christmas morning was wonderful as she savored each gift before opening the next, sometimes even refusing to open another. She adores books and I do hope that lasts!


    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 5:19PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Hi time to chat, as I have my sister here. She came for dinner and we are visiting, but we just saw on the news about the terrible flooding of icy waters and the snow in the east. Chelone...could you just check and say you're "okay". Or if someone has heard from her, would you post and let us know. I'll be back to check later. Thanks!


    Bookmark   December 27, 2010 at 9:07PM
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jak1(4 Ontario Can)

I'm with you, Ei; worried about several Idyll friends - Chelone, Deanne, Sue, Monique.....Saucy is o.k. in sunny (?) California for a vacation, I think.

We, on the other hand, would love a bit of snow. No sledding, skiing, snowboarding, snowman building etc. for our youngsters who have a full ten days from school now. Weather seems to be absolutely terrible everywhere but here, where it is just very very cold.

Our Christmas was just great this year, although quiet. Funny thing, Bug, TCS also got a mini trampoline for Christmas. We are doing a lot to get this non athletic child more active: a snowboard and lessons, swim fins, a hockey stick, and the trampoline are some of his gifts this year.

He also received a radio controlled helicopter that is just amazing. It is an indoor toy and works really well. On the down side, we have the white popcorn ceilings in our entire house (why builders still do that I don't know....well I suspect its to hide a poor drywall job on the ceiling) and so after several days of "flying" we have those white chunks everywhere. To make matters worse, DS and DH love it to and so are off to the January sales to buy one for each of them.. *sigh*

I am so glad to see that so many of you enjoyed the season this year. You are my friends and I wish the best for you!

If I get the chance, I'll check in later!


P.S. this year's new Idyll invention, to join the Juliejob and the EAT program, WALAT and SALAT, is the DebbieDay!

    Bookmark   December 28, 2010 at 9:31AM
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Good morning friends. I haven't heard from Chelone, but most of the East Coast Idylls are on FB and I haven't seen any major complaints, so I guess all is well. One of Cynthia's Grays had to have stitches after walking into a downed metal arbor, but she was headed to the vet.

We took a tour of the harbor and all the ships we could board. Yesterday we did the world famous zoo (I have to confess that zoos are not my favorite, but I know the kids like it). Today we're touring the naval base where Nick and I were stationed and married. It's raining but we're going to enjoy the day anyway as it will be pretty again tomorrow. We've been with old friends and that has been nice.

Today's photo? A giant mosaic flower along the harbor!

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 10:27AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Thanks soooo much Saucy...I was really getting concerned, especially since no one seemed to be posting. Now if we could just hear from Chelone... I *love* the Seussish!'s so nice to have someone who understands! :-)

Cyn...I love the reindeer...he just makes you smile...I think you should keep him lit! :-)

Saucy's harbor picture is so serene and got me longing for summer...decided I needed a reminder of summer's miracles and thought you guys would enjoy the link below. My goal in life is to visit every National Park in the U.S. This summer we hope to visit Bryce Canyon. Though not a U.S. National Park this is a place that's on my "to do" list.

Here is a link that might be useful: Summer's Miracle

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 2:37PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Still with a box of tissues at my side, and squealing squirming Ivy all about. She's such great entertainment. Today's new word: shark.

I'm so glad that Saucy mentioned Cynthia in her news. It has been years now since I heard word of her. I hope someone sends her and the grays my very best wishes! I miss her postings and garden & pet photos. I'm with you Saucy on the zoo thing...So glad the trip is going well!

DS is busy with a conference and so no news from him yet. :(

Off to rest.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 2:44PM
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The sun came out today ! But it's appreciably colder (zone 9 wimpy cold) and we expect freezing temps tonight. Looks like we might get a couple of days to dry out a little , and then more rain for the New Year. I plan to work a half day on Fri (maybe)and come home and start de-constructing Christmas. I had 3 seed catalogs in my mailbox today, so I believe it's time to think about my garage seed starting set-up. I try to have that up and running by Feb. Also in the mailbox was the advanced ticket info for the SF Flower Show ..yippee! End of March , something I always look forward to. I was considering the Seattle show too this year, but I have too much going on around that time , so will have to wait another year.

My guests have all departed and I am back at the awfice - this holiday week is always really slow and I like to use it to get a couple of projects done; this year I am feverishly working on readiness for spring in our garden center-early buys, pricing etc. Today I went to the store and set up the seed-germination supplies, which we have expanded appreciably.

�bug , I sent your greetings to Cynthia..I miss her postings here too, but do get to see her over on FB. I hope that sniffling clears up for you soon ! What a PIA to have that going on over a holiday vacation.

Cyn, that reindeer is really cool.. and unique too ! Come to IU next summer and we'll give you a Mimosa !

LOL Julie, what I wouldn't give for a DebbieDay ! I had actually considered having the house professionally cleaned before Christmas , but ended up doing it myself. I had enough time off so it worked out ok.

Waving at Saucy !

Chelone, looking for a check-in after your stormy weather up yonder there..just a howdy and all is well will do !

All for now my friends�

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 9:21PM
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Yesterday was a perfect winter day, low 30's, sunny and no wind or precip. Today is overcast and drippy. Another system is moving in. My son and girlfriend are supposed to drive up from Texas on Friday. I'm already worrying about the weather. They will be here the following weekend after spending some time in South Dakota visiting friends and her family. So we will be celebrating Christmas then. My parents and Kenzie will come too. I'm leaving my decorations and tree up until then.

For some reason our internet is extremely slow tonight. It's really annoying Rick.

Ei, I enjoyed the monarch video. We encourage the monarch's in our garden. Kenzie gets quite a kick out of counting the caterpillars. We missed Bryce Canyon a couple of years ago when we hit Arches, Grand Canyon and Zion National Parks. Its a really unique and lovely part of the country. I'd like to go back some day.

I really should make a post of pictures from Glacier National Park like I promised. This cold seems to really suck the life out of me by the time I get home from work.

'bug, you may be suffering from your cold but you certainly have some lively entertainment to take your mind off it.

Saucy, your trip looks quite enjoyable. You are certainly getting some awesome pictures. That flower is pretty cool.

Julie, you may end up with your bit of snow if you get too many of those helicopters flying around.

That's all for now

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 10:40PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Kathy, at the moment the temperature here is minus 4F. That's COLD!

Julie, if those helicopters are the same as Skyler's, they are not only amazing but beautiful! Skyler the impatient klutz even learned (under pressure) to raise and lower it without making it crash into ceiling and floor. Next, he mastered operating it in a circular pattern! (YEAH Sarah!)

Thinking of Marian as I return to a difficult puzzle!
Sympathies to you Michelle! This cold/virus/strep has taken a lot out of me.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2010 at 11:31PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Good morning! Here's what Wednesday morning's sunrise looked like:

Today, it's just dense fog with no hoar frost.

Sadly, the Christmas tree comes down today. We're off to see friends for NYE and then DH goes out of town for almost two weeks straight, so if we don't do it today I would have to wrestle the beast by myself, and that won't work.

Lots to get done this morning, so I'll wish you all a Happy New Year and see you next year!


    Bookmark   December 30, 2010 at 8:35AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Wow V...beautiful shot...looks like an tonalist painting!

Hope Michelle and Bug will be feelings like their old selves soon...


    Bookmark   December 30, 2010 at 8:48AM
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I've had a cold, too. No fun to travel with a head cold. I hope you guys feel better soon...I seem to be on the mend.

I'm doing laundry this morning - just one load - while the kids take a dip in the hot tub. We're headed to the Wild Animal Park and then to a botanical garden (woo hoo!)

Today's photo is from our trip to our old base in Point Loma. We actually lucked out and found someone to sponsor us on an active submarine, so it was a real treat. I can still climb in and out just like it was yesterday. Nick and I were really tickled to let the kids get a glimpse of what we used to do on a daily basis. Here's a picture of us waiting for our escort and checking out the monument on the base:

    Bookmark   December 30, 2010 at 11:03AM
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We are supposed to be heading into a blizzard and we have 5 of the grandkids here. Are we crazy? Their ages range from 7 - 13.

It was warm and rained some today. A lot of the snow disappeared. The bare ground won't last long from the sound of things.

I stopped at the grocery store after work to make sure we had enough food in the house for all of us if we get snowed in. Apparently everyone else had the same idea.

Saucy, what a great vacation you guys are having! I'm sure its a treat to revisit your base and the submarine was probably a real hit with the kids.

V, what a lovely sunrise. Its been misty, foggy and frosty here lately.

The seed and plant catalogs are piling up. Several more arrive each day. I'm looking at vegetables a little more closely this year for their ornamental value. I'm thinking that I will add some in the garden thats along the front sidewalk. Since that leads up to our kitchen. I'm thinking that I'll move the chives up there and add a few herbs. Amongst the perennials and shrubs I'm curious if people will even notice.

What new things are you thinking of for your gardens this year?


    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 12:12AM
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I don't know about you but I need some color this a.m. Enjoy your day!

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 9:23AM
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Good morning Idylls..nice to see a posy welcoming me this morning--outside my window the world is covered with a heavy blanket of frost. I'm fixing to assemble the boxes in the living room to start de-constructing the Christmas's 2 week run in the Kathy house is over.

Hope all our friends are bundled up warm for the new Year ...

back later

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 11:53AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Amazing to see the pretty photos this morning V and Michelle. All is black & white and cold here..even the magpies.(which make me think of Deanne!)

DD and I have been working on a quilt for Ivy's bed and it is the first for both of lots to consider!

DSIL at last received his gift from DD, a beautiful pottery soup tureen. Last night he made a batch of pumpkin soup with pumpkin bread and a lovely salad. DD made a tart apple crisp that hit the spot too!

Skyler returns today and there is much to do before that including banking for education funds for the little ones. This is the last day to register them. We hope to take Skyler out for sushi which he loves. DSIL does NOT care for sushi, so this will be a special outing. (I love the vegetarian kind!)

DH is full of cold and I hope his health improves by tomorrow when we have an event to attend as well as preparations for our return to complete.

Ivy began the day with a tantrum. LOUD. Then she was full of kisses for everyone. OY!!!

Happy end of year!

(I am seeing odd characters in the headings where our garden zones appear. Anyone else?)

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 12:58PM
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Michelle I think that is a great idea to add some kitchen garden things to the walk area. 7 to 13 year age rage? I bet that is a lively bunch. And I know they can eat a lot.

6o degree weather and new seed catalogs. What a tease. We just had a thunderstorm with hail roll through here with more on the way.

Jake and Wyatt are supposed to come over sometime today and spend the night. Jake was messing around with something in the garage right after Christmas and got a piece of rusty metal in his eye. It was embedded deep and took two dr's to get it out. He has had to go back every day since to have it checked and and taken care off. They said he was very lucky it wasn't any deeper. They are trying to keep it from getting infected.
He is always trying to invent something and his granpa is always on his case about doing dangerous things. I am going to try to have a serious conversation with him without to much nagging about precautions he should take. I hate to stifle his creativeness but would hate to see him disabled from it.

Michelle I enjoy your poppy picture. I have a begonia blooming in the bay window and was thinking how nice it is to see blooms.

Kathy we are warmer here today than you are but it is getting ready to switch back. I didn't put out many decorations so I don't have many to take down.

Saucy have been enjoying your vacation with you. How great that modern devices let us do that.

Back to my book for now. I see that many of you got kindles for christmas. Let me know how you like them.

Waving to all. I think we need to put this idyll to bed and start a new one for the new year. I know we have all slowed down but I sure don't want Idyll to go away.

Cheers! Norma

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 1:02PM
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Hi Bug, Glad you are feeling better and doing fun things with the family. Hope DH can recover quickly. Miss seeing all the cute pictures of the kids. Enjoy every minute even the loud ones, LOL.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 1:09PM
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No wierd characters here.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 1:13PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Here's what I see:

Posted by michelle_zone4 zone%204%20%20NW%20I (My Page) on
Fri, Dec 31, 10 at 0:12

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 3:59PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Wishing each and everyone of my imaginary friends a non-imaginary happy, healthy, prosperous 2011.

Yes, 'bug, I am seeing those odd zones in some of our posts, but not all. I cut them out of mine, but doubt that will actually fix it. We'll see.

I have started putting away some of the decorations, but will leave the lights inside and out up a while longer. It is just so pretty all lit up!

Tonight is crabcakes, swordfish (I know, not an environmentally sound choice, but DH loves it), broccoli, and potatoes. Hoping I can stay up to watch the ball drop on Times Square, but it is hard to stay up when I don't know any of the acts they show leading up to it. No champagne this year :(, but worth it to have a fully-present DH here!

Finally, from T.S. Eliot:

For last year's words belong to last year's language And next year's words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.

Happy, happy new year dear friends.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 5:28PM
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I see the gobble-de-gook on certain folk and not others �bug, Norma is clean as a whistle, Michelle and you both have all sorts of numbers and punctuation..

Tree is un-decorated, and I just need DS to help me carry it outside when he gets out of the shower. Tomorrow I�ll schlep all the boxes up into their off season positions in the garage. Tomorrow I�m going to make soup , and it�s going to rain (again!) so the rose pruning will have to wait at least another week. What a mess the back garden is right now.

Lots of seed catalogs here too Norma, but I have so many seeds left from last year I expect they will just be used for reading material..and picture-viewing of course. Thompson Morgan came today.

Lol Cyn, It�s been a mighty long time since I stayed up to watch the ball drop ! Being an LA girl, I like to watch the rose parade on New Years morning. I�ll celebrate at 9pm with my east coast friends

Ok friends, wishing you all a Happy New Year ..on to Buffalo !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 6:22PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Happy New Year to all...!

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 8:03PM
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Happy New Year to all!

I hope the New Year will be filled with good things for all.


    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 8:18PM
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Happy new year to all.

I hadn't actually noticed the odd characters. Odd that they only show up for a few of us. I deleted them this time.

We have gained 1 more kid. We now have 5 boys and 1 girl. They sure do eat alot. Not exactly the restful weekend I had planned on, but we have been having fun. The blizzard fizzled here and seemed to stay to the north. We all went outside for awhile today but it topped out at 16 degrees but there was no wind.

'bug, how nice to make Ivy's quilt together. Is this for a big girl bed? What colors or kind of pattern are you using? My mom made beautiful quilts for my children's beds when they were little.

The kids want to stay up until midnight. I don't think they all will make it. I doubt I will.

Happy New Years friends!


    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 8:48PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Just got home from dinner with sis, hubby & a few friends. Well I know hubby won't be around for the ball drop...he went straight to! Doubt that I'll make either, but you never know.

Michelle...did you get your big snowstorm? I don't think I could handle all those then again, I'm older than you! :-) Still...I bet it's lots of are always so exciting and full of life! The poppy/larkspur picture sure is comforting right now...did you have a little meadow garden going? Thanks about the butterflies. I enjoyed that video too, thought it was very imformative and amazing really. I definitely plan to go there some day (when the butterflies are there, of course)! :-) Speaking of changes in the garden, this fall I removed nearly all (but just a few of my favorite) perennials from the backyard. I've kept the front yard the same as it was, but plan to make the backyard a sort of woodland (read "lower maintenance" vision. Well, we'll see how I do with it, but I'm excited and drawing up all kinds of plans. Am very hopeful that I can succeed with my dreams about a path that will lead to a courtyard surrounded by conifers/evergreens. Inside of it I plan to make "a statement"...not sure with what; a big statue (if I can afford it) and a couple of simple cement benches. If I can't get the statue I was thinking maybe using my old urn on a pedestal and put something special in it. I had my was red mandevilla vine with golden sweet potato vine in it and it looked very pretty though very small :-) this summer. I brought it in the house for winter and it's actually maybe it will be that something special for the secret courtyard. Anyway, the backyard change is mostly instigated by the fact that we want to eventually sell the house and would like it to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible. When we had the house up before we got a lot of "how hard is this to maintain?" "How many hours do you spend working in the garden" (I wanted to say "Every possible moment I can!"..How much would it cost to hire someone to maintain it", etc. It kind of made me feel bad because I *love* my garden, but I guess I get it, if your not a garden nut like everyone here! :-) So, I adopted out most of my plants to new mothers who will love them as much as I did.

I love T.S. Elliot too Cyn.

Not sure about the gobbledy gook Kathy, but you know some times when I read your posts there are extra letters and symbols in your you ever see that?

Thanks so much Saucy for sharing your vacation with us, it's really been a highlight for me to come here and see pics of the lovely weather you've been enjoying. So glad you're having such a good time.

Norma, I've been enjoying all the new catalogs too. I love that summer dreaming...

Your post reminded me of two of my favorite quotes about winter:

As I write, snow is falling outside my Maine window,
and indoors all around me
half a hundred garden catalogues are in bloom.
- Katharine S. White

From December to March, there are for many of us three gardens -
the garden outdoors,
the garden of pots and bowls in the house,
and the garden of the mind's eye.
- Katherine S. White

Well, that's it for me tonight. When I get more organized, I'd love to share with you ( read "get some ideas from you" my backyard plans. My hubby has no opinions...unless of course, I'm not looking for one that!

Here's to a Healthy, Wealthy and Wise new year filled with Peace...


    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 11:27PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

We are having Harry Potter read to us now..but there's a break for putting the littlest two to bed.

Next I believe is our annual shrimp & champagne in the hot tub event. Hmmm. It is -20C!

The quilt is a rainbow fabric on one side and flannel camping scenes in blocks on the reverse. I'll try for photos! It is our first, so may not be perfection itself, but it will be well used and loved. I bought fabric today for summer dresses for Ivy.

Tonight Skyler opened his book from us that included currencies from foreign lands. He passed the tests too: He knew which continents each denomination came from.

Now the big question: How will I stay awake until midnight???? It is only 10:10 here now.

See you all next year!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 12:10AM
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From RoadTrip

Happy New Year! Today's picture is a scene from the Mission at San Juan Capistrano. Hats off to Kathy and Denise for giving me some excellent destinations for our travel to Orange County.


    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 12:24AM
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yeonasky(z8b VancouverBC)

Happy New Year, everyone.

I hope all your colds are done quickly. Does anyone have an interest in herbs and other alternative medicine or should I just bite my health nut tongue? I hate to see anyone suffer and am always looking for a way to help shorten their agony.

I see the same weird number and symbols as you GB, on only you and Michelle. I read about this before, and people had to go in and correct their information. The was some glitch in the GW programming.

Correction from my last post: Oops Make that Reveillon.

My plan for the garden this year is to add more evergreen shrubs out front and more vegetable gardens out back. I can't expand out back as much as I wanted, as I need room for the dogs I board, for exercise. So I might have to join you Michelle and plant among the flowers. I do like the look enough so the idea appeals.

It's cold and clear here. -1c. Not as bad as GB but it feels cold. Whenever it clears up in winter the temp drops and my skin goes nuts. It dries right up, and I get a huge painful coldsore or 10. Yuk. I'm allergic to the stuff in moisturizers, but have recently discovered that if I apply a mixture vitamin e and vitamin a oils, my skin stays uncracked and coldsore free, hurrah.

Hope those struggling with weather are okay, too. I too miss the absent Idyllers. And their pet stories and gardens. I hope Cynthia's dog is okay, and will recover quickly. I too miss Deanne's bird pics, as well.

Saucy sounds like you're having a good time in California. That's where the owners of Sophie, the dog I boarded till the 28th, went. Sophie was a sweet girl. She had the energy of a border collie on our walks, and is making Leah pick up her pace. Thanks for the photos. My oldest sister has a sailboat. She and her DH live in Texas, so don't sail as much as they'd like. They finally bought property on Orcas Island so they'll be able to sail lots when they retire.

My daughter can plan circles around me. I always get lost and confused by maps. I really need to get out more and learn some basic navigation skills.

Mary glad you're having fun with your Mum. It's great that she can visit from such a long way away. Scrabble is my favourite game, but nobody wants to play with me here anymore. :(

Chelone, thank you for the info on how fire for heat works nowadays. I love when your explain stuff. It is so great that you have answered my many questions about fire as a working alternative to other heat sources. I love that the smoke from the fire is actually burned, as well. So cool. Or so hot. Well both to me. I have two questions now. Can the wood be dried out by the fire to be more quickly cured? Do you and is it adviseable to cook on the fire stove?

I sympathise with you, being 'on deck', now. It really is the 'middle class' burden to bear of life. We are without 'elders' as well, and are helping the youngens achieve their schooling goals. I too have great fears about being without the many things money buys. Including money for medical emergencies. I have struggled with this for years. Now that I have found a way to manage my migraines I at least can entertain the thought that I might be able to write and bead necklaces to sell and walk dogs and ? to keep a roof overhead and food in the belly, on top of the other expenses. Medical expenses seems to be the biggest challenge. I hope to work on renting rooms here for people traveling with pets, perhaps, and to continue earning money outside of the traditional ways, even if I do have to get a real job, as I won't ever retire me. Maybe it will work and maybe it won't. Too bad I can't invent the next suduko or other great invention. Of course you never know. I'll keep trying to find one. I wonder if everyone has one great invention in them, like everyone might have at least one book in them.

Women Inventors

V hope you won the fight with the cold finally. Cool photo. Love the misty sun.

Love the story about your cousin. It goes to show that it pays to write to people still, and it pays to say thank you.

Cyn, sometimes I feel 29 and sometimes I feel 79. I'm actually 53. I read a report where they studied Harvard men, High IQ women and Low income men to see who lived longest and felt the best. I'm always looking outside myself to feel better and sometimes that works. But according to the study, a good attitude and being adaptable are more important. Those are internally driven traits. I don't know if I can ever call myself adaptable. That takes practice.

Cute reindeer. Glad your DH is getting back to himself. At least he's on the right track.

Harvard Medical School Study: Aging Well

Vaillant found six predictors of who at age 80 would be among the "happy-well" as opposed to the "sad-sick": a stable marriage, a mature adaptive style, no smoking, little use of alcohol, regular exercise, and maintenance of normal weight. To age well physically, the single most important choice was to avoid heavy smoking before age 50, or to quit at a young age... A simple lesson from the Grant Study is to worry less about cholesterol and more about gratitude and forgiveness."'

Let's see I have a fairly 'stable marriage', sort of 'a mature' but not I think a very 'adaptive style,. I'll have to work on not being thrown into a tailspin when things go wrong. I don't smoke, can't drink alcohol, even though I have a sip every so often. I have fairly regular exercise, and am overweight. What's my score?

Michelle thanks for the pretty poppy pic. I love it with the green purple and lavender backdrop. I'm sorry you didn't have all your family there for Christmas, especially Kenzie, who is so grown since I was last here regularly. My DS and DD and DSIL were here this year, but all three nephews who have lived with us for 6 years on and off were not. We had more leftovers than I knew what to do with, and too many empty spots at the table. Six kids, that's almost a baseball team. I hope they stayed somewhat in control, and everyone had fun. I've had a houseful of screaming girls and it can be quite ear piercing.

Ei I have to think before spelling many things. I like to think it is a sign of the amount of info we store. The less used things get shoved off the shelf to make room for the new and 'shiny' info.

I love the evergreen gardens. I found this pic and would love the look. I love my perennials but hate having nothing in the winter.

I'm hoping there's a solution to your work dilemma. I feel badly that you have to go to an 'awfice', at all. I'm hoping some day you can graduate to an office.

Drema, au contraire, mon amie, I'm the lucky one. I disappear and when I reappear am welcomed back, with open arms. You at least know what side your Idylls are buttered on. I am trying to stay warm, but without the heat on it's a bit of a challenge. It's by choice, though. I'm trying to cut way down on expenses. I'm bundling up well. I need a houseful of boarding dogs.

I have recently semi reunited with my sisters. I am emailing with the sister whom I have not spoken to for years. I don't know where it will go, but I'm hoping there will be some connection, especially for my son's sake, who lives at home still and has had debilitating, life crippling migraines since he was 12. There was no help for him before, but just as with me, we've finally found the right combo. What I'm trying to say is that my estrangement from my side of the family and the lack of closeness from Richea's side of the family has left my son without close family, or, due to illness and crippling shyness, no friends. I think he could handle therapy now. Hopefully we will be able to afford it soon.

Kathy I love 'antiquing'. Did you find anything? I really want to see the new Harry Potter movie, but I guess it will have to be on the little screen.

It was wonderful to read all about the different food and the different traditions. We eat turkey for the Canadian side of the family, pickled herring and pickled red cabbage for the Danish side of the family, and cabbage rolls, for the Ukrainian side of the family. Too bad I can't drink or I'd add Irish coffee for the Irish side of the family. My mixed heritage side of the family doesn't look even Danish. We're small and dark haired, for the most part. The Danish comes out every so often, but the dark hair and small stature is more common. We do not look like vikings. Except for my son, who is 6' tall and blonde. Go figure. Genetics are wonderful things.

Manual Egg Beater

GB I hope your DH feeling better today. I've linked a manual egg beater. Of course Chelone's offer is the best kind.

Jak sorry to say I tried everything with my own non athletic son, and nothing took. I hope you have better luck. I often wished that there was an interactive video game, where he had to stand and move to play, so that at least he would be moving around. Not ideal but it would have been some activity. Now they do have that, but he's not interested at all. :(

I'm looking to make a new dog bed for Leah. Sophie my boarding border collie came with her own bed and Leah kept trying to sneak onto it. Leah has the round kind, and Sophie has the rectangular kind. I can see that Sophie's bed has a better fill and it is slightly bigger, and Leah needs a slightly bigger bed. I've linked a page of the ones that I might copy. I have cotton and foam, so I just need to decide which style to use. I love the one that envelopes the dog. I want that for myself. Like sleeping in a cloud, lol.

Dog Bed Design Selection Guide

Dog beds

Ten Kinds of Dog Beds

More stuff about being as hydro and gas free as possible.

Totally Solar-Heated House - Version 1

The linked one is my fantasy. Now all I have to do is buy some land and dig down 18'and build a house on top, if I want this.

Hope everyone has a wonderful doy tomorrow. I'm headed out for dim sum, at 10:30. A little early after a late night.


Here is a link that might be useful: Heat and Cool a House without a Furnace or Air Conditioner!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 2:32AM
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