One more day and they start to get longer !
Carry on friends..
Kathy in Napa
Yippee! My dad always loved "Midwinter" for just that reason. He never failed to comment on the days beginning to lengthen. Nice to hear it again, Kathy!
2pm beer break time. Mattress delivered, more bows made, greenhouse window(and contents thereof) in the kitchen cleaned , grocery shopping #2 done, living room carpet shampooed, bird feeders filled, 2 loads of laundry..jeesh, it sounds pretty impressive when I spell it out !
The Sunday newspaper is still wrapped in plastic-I may get to it later . Rain has started now, so the patio sweeping will be done another day.
Lovely poem you posted for Marian bug. And when is your departure for the wild west ? One hates to think of the hairdresser putting flammable products on ones head- I remember the good old days of Âaqua netÂ and other aerosol propelled hairsprays that created the Âcrash helmetÂ look of the very early 60Âs. I can only imagine the result if those particular coiffures got close to wood stove fire.
Saucy, itÂs easy to tell Cyn and Candy apart if you remember that all of our Cindys and Cynthias are in the same geographic area- I Âm thinkinÂ itÂs easier to keep the house clean for a week that it is to do the initial clean-up..IÂm waiting till the last minute to do 2 of the bathrooms .
Hi Chelone, glad to see you, even briefly. I was glad to hear of staplers and greenery-I infer that the pediments are moving forward.
Alright, back to work ..waves to all ..
PS Pardon the repeat post-I started a new Idyll and then posted this on the old one ! Too many cleaning product fumes I bet
All of the decorations are finished. The first floor windows have the triangular pediments over them and there are side swags of balsam roping, embellished with some of my "simulated fruit". There is a larger triangular pediment over the door. Those decorations are up. The second floor windows will have an over window treatment of white pine and juniper with the balsam swags, as well. And I'll put those up tomorrow.
I have debated rigging up some little white lights, but not sure I care enough to engineer it. It would require extentsion cords and they're a pain. :)
I'm very sorry to learn of Tommy's entry to the Happy Hunting Ground, Marian. It's always sad when our old, furry friends take their leave of us. (((Marian)))
We have about 6" of snow here. No big deal. I wonder how Cindy is faring with the shovelling. OK, time to go out and stock the wood for tomorrow's fire.
((Marian and Nolon))
So sorry Marian, the loss of a dearly loved furry family member is so heartbreaking. Thinking of you and hugging my kitties tonight.
Sorry to hear of Tommy's passing, Marian. ((Marian))
I need to go back and read of Marie's hair raising incident...somehow posts appeared here today that were not here this morning! Is that possible? It seems unlikely, yet it is exactly what I think I'm experiencing. I did not see Chelone's post earlier, but saw what Cindy had posted afterward. Odd.
Thinking of you tonight, Marian.
Greetings everyone. I've read here for awhile with interest, hope you don't mind my dropping in. I love the winter solstice, my favorite after the vernal equinox. I think I'll celebrate it on the east coast tomorrow at 12:47 with something bubbly, here's to longer days, even if just a minute or two at first.
Marian and Nolan, Sorry to hear about Tommys passing. I know it hurts.
Greetings, Busy days but I wanted to tell Marian how sorry I am to hear about Tommy. I know you'll miss him so much.
Also wanted to tell Marie, be careful with those flameable hair products:) Seriously, could have turned out to not be funny... Sorry to hear that Phoebe lost her friend too.
Christmas is in full swing at our house. Grandchildren can keep you busy with Christmassy "stuff" for weeks before the actual holiday it seems. A few pictures of what we've been up to...
Bella and Kate in Santa's chair
Bella at her school Christmas party
Bella making ornaments for her gifts to hand out to family on Christmas. We've been working on these all week and just finished them tonight.
Yes, she's turning out to be quite crafty and I'm loving that:)
In case I don't get back again before the holiday, wishing you all the merriest of Christmases!
I guess everything will get done on time, but right now I can't imagine how. We leave on Christmas Eve. Today Phoebe was introduced to Sparkles, a labradoodle who oddly enough looks like a mini version of a Bouvier! All went well.
I typed out pages with vet information and pet food quantities and times for feeding etc. Also typed out a schedule for the three people caring for the cats with their phone numbers so they can support each other.
I worked on the crochet edge of the blanket I made, but there's more to be done, perhaps AFTER Christmas.
DH is working on next term's courses. His exam is tomorrow and he will submit grades on Tuesday.
I am glad to see Eileen (shade tolerant) appear here to join us. She is not to be confused with our talented and musical Ei who only shows up rarely these days. How we miss her and her family, dog and garden tales. Tell us a bit about yourself so that we don't confuse you with Ei, OK?
I would of course love a photo of the exterior of Chelone's home, even without little white lights. Rex at a sit stay by the door would be fine too...
V, your photo must still be in the camera...?
Kathy, your list of accomplishments is impressive! I only managed one load of laundry today. I wish I had cranberry cake to munch right this minute, maybe tomorrow...
'bug (whose hair is just fine after combing away the burned edges!~)
Marian, so sorry to hear about Tommy. I know you'll miss him!
Still lots to do here, not the least of which is trying to keep all the factions happy! Tree is not decorated because I won't get on the ladder and reach out to hang ornaments and DD won't let me have DH do it. And neither of us have been at home at the same time for a long enough stretch. It will get done, folks!
V. the unadorned.
Well Hi there Eileen ! New friends here are always welcome.. I believe NJ has never been represented . As 'bug mentioned, we hope you will share a bit about yourself .Once I stuck my toe in the water here there was no turning back. I'm with you-sunrise 2 minutes earlier is a happy event !
V, I did some tripod stuff tonight, none that I want to post yet, but I feel really good about the potential. Getting the lighting right is key-no flash of course.
Eden, I don't know how you manage to keep Ms Bella on task ..but it looks like things are coming along..
And wonder of wonders, DS cleaned his bathroom tonight-I have not inspected but he was up there for an extended time. One less bathroom to clean is very welcome .
The Salon is a disaster right now but it sure smells nice after the full force decoration marathon. I will "sanitize it for my protection" this afternoon. Then, like Saucy, I'll have to work to keep it clean.
Eileen, another fan of the Solstice here, too! I love watching the sun march steadily south over the coarse of the year and then begin it's trip north. There was some idle banter about an outdoor fire to light the longest night of the year, but I suspect we will trim the tree tonight, instead. We will definitely need to know something about you! I see the freshman class of 2009 is adding to its ranks. What good fun!
With the Solstice in mind, my friends, I'm looking for a set of antlers... not the full stuffed head and neck, just the antlers. I have kept my eyes peeled at junk stores and yard sales but have yet to find any... V., do you or husband have any suggestions of other places to look for that sort of thing?
I imagine all youngsters are about ready to come unglued at the prospect of Christmas looming so close. All as it should be; what time will they be up and prowling about on Christmas morning? "Can we get up now? Santa's been here!" was the rallying cry in our home, and my sleepy parents would troop downstairs and plug in the tree at about 5 AM, shortly thereafter other lights came on in the neighborhood... .
Good morning, What I'm doing up so early I don't know? Chelone, glad to hear the pediments are in place for another Christmas season. Big job, but they look so nice on your home.
Welcome Eileen. I've seen your name around on GW. Over on Hostas mostly I believe.
Kathy, actually we did have NJ represented long, long ago here on Idylls. Those of you who are old timers will remember Rara Avis, Julie? Boy, that was a long time ago when she posted here. Back in the very beginning. It took me a while to remember her screen name.
Off to do grocery shopping. Then a bit of baking. I'm not doing alot of that this year but it wouldn't be Christmas without doing a few traditional things. At least that's what my kids would say.
V, keep workin' on that tree. You know we're all waiting to see it all trimmed out:)
How nice to hear from Chelone and Eden first thing in the morn!!!
Be back later...
Lol Eden, we are Celone-like today , its a little after 7 and Ive already none a load of laundry and cleaned my closet-which was in decorating dissaray . Going to clean 1 bathroom and then head over to Target, which should be ok at 8:30 Monday morning. I need to replace my shower curtain.
Happy Solstice to all !
I was up at 3 this morning, so it has been a long day already. Eden and Kathy, I'm back from the pharmacy and Zeller's where I bought 8 pair of socks for my trip. Then I wrapped 3 small gifts. Next on the agenda, packing a suitcase or two.
DH has scheduled the dentist for an emergency visit tomorrow afternoon. Thank goodness he's doing this before our holiday trip.
Off to see what I can accomplish.
I was thrust into the frantic scramble mode last night when both kids called to say they plan to come a day early. Weather conditions are iffy on Wednesday so theyre arriving home tomorrow, yippee! Stepping up plans for today but wanted to make a quick post and leave a trail of cookie crumbs so I can find my way back after the holidays.
Thanks for the feedback on the Crustless Cranberry Pie; happy so many found this quick dessert to their liking and isnt it the easiest thing? Saucy, thank you! I was pleased to hear you converted it to gluten free with success as I have a friend newly diagnosed with celiac disease.
And Saucy.Cyn and I would be easy to confuse since we arrived so close together. In fact, we could probably become known as the imaginary twins LOL! About the health tips, Cynjust sharing the pix received via email and they already had captions. I only tweak them when I forget the original wording :-) Were I really a clever person, Id have moved to a more moderate climate years ago! Im a southern girl at heart.
Hey Chelone, good to see you back. Figured you were just busy and getting that woodstove under control. The greenery description sounds very picturesque and with the pediments and simulated fruit the compound must look quite stately! I really need to see a photo of this simulated fruit, though.
LabradoodleI love it! Now how could you say that word without smiling?! Have a safe trip Bug and wonderful time with your family. Dont forget your camera!
Denise, just hoping you and your family can manage a peaceful holiday so soon after your fathers passing. I know it wont be easy as the good memories are still shadowed with grief but youll get through it together.
Thinking about you, too, Michelle. I remember you saying it might be a rough time for your family, especially with DD and Kenzie in FL. Seems a few days since you posted the pillar and entryway photos; I hope youre doing OK and just busy like so many of us right now.
Eden, love the little girl photos; Bella is well on the way to becoming a dark haired beauty and Kate is the perfect doll baby. I can tell they keep you busy year round and not just during the holidays.
Eileen, nice to read your post. Ive been waitinga new voice, now Cyn and I (the imaginary twins) can pass the fledgling torch and say welcome.
Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas or Happy Holiday, quick wave to all Ive missed and
Health tip of the day: Plan a vacation!
Sounds like holiday frenzy mode for many. All the baking I did has been given away and/or eaten, so more oven time ahead. Shopping is woefully unattended to, but I need to finish one more transcript before hitting the local stores. These last two transcripts bring my closest brush with celebrity yet, one of the parties being a step-sibling of a Beatle. I had no idea at the time, and during breaks in the depo we chatted about mundane things like how to keep the blood moving when sitting for long periods of time, trading astronaut isometric exercises. Exciting stuff! No rain since the one storm a few weeks ago and had to water some pots yesterday. Lots of wonderful pix of dogs in snow on FB, and on the idylls too.
Yes, it all will get done, V! (from someone who always skids into the holidays...) An impromptu wreath for the mantle, made on a wreath base from last year's grapevine and anything else in reach, turned out rather festive, but as has been noted, indoor photos can be challenging, and I completely agree!
Marty finished the rebuilding and now most of the painting on the windows in the small sun room off the kitchen. I guess that's what this room is, being mostly windows, but it's the cave where Duncan has been living for some years. Do all boys turn perfectly nice rooms into caves? I'm trying to bring the little room back into the light, kind of a library/sun room with a desk and daybed where he can sleep. And that's it, not a stick more. He'll have to share a closet with Mitch for clothes -- Mitch who's seldom here anyway (up in SF at the moment). The old wood floor in this room is in the worst shape, though the rest of the house is not much better, so flooring and repairing the subfloor are a looming priority. Duncan's been flopping in the office during repairs, sleeping behind me on the futon as I type. Cozy!
And Marty, the lucky dog, is being early-retired by the City of LA due to the big budget crunch, last day sometime between now and June. A crushing five-hour seminar on Saturday spelling out the bureaucratic details nearly wiped out my holiday spirit but it's beginning to bubble back up, thanks to Idyll photos and holiday plans.
Warm welcome to Eileen!
Movie tip - loved A Christmas Tale, with Catherine Deneuve. Lucky 'bug doesn't need the English subtitles.
Marian, deep condolences to you and Nolon for the loss of your beloved Tommy.
Candy, thank you for such thoughtfulness. Glad to hear your kids made the travel plan changes. Nothing like last-minute scheduling changes to keep the holidays exciting. Leaving a trail of molasses crinkle crumbs...
Thanks to all for all the kind thoughts. The entire ordeal has left me with the doldrums, and with a very painful right shoulder. I got so little sleep early in the night, then overslept this morning. Laying down for a nap was a rather useless endeavor. I am ready for another of those extremely painful cortisone shots, for my shoulder. :-(
Well, I never did get to the grocery store today. I'm really good at putting off that job. I do have a list though and must go first thing tomorrow morning. I did get quite a bit done around the house today. No kiddos, so I could zip through things without interruption. Laundry, dishes, vacuuming...yep, all the fun stuff.
Sounds like most of you all are just as busy getting ready for family and celebrating.
Kathy, as for keeping Bella on task, that's easiest when it's something that she enjoys. And she loves cutting, painting and glueing. Messy but important stuff when you're 4 so I let her have at it.
So you're moving into the retirement years Denise. I bet Marty's looking forward to that. I"m not ready for that at our house yet, though I think Brad would be OK with it. I'm not sure my mom ever got completely used to my dad being home all the time when he retired. Wonder if it's like that for most women?
Marie, bet you can't wait to get on that plane and get off on the other end to Ivy's smiling face. She seems like quite the little character from her pictures and is such a cute and smiley little girl. I'll be waiting to hear all the great stories from you visit.
So Kathy, did you get in and out of Target with just a shower curtain? I find it very easy to spend $$$ there.
Candy, how old are your kids? Boys or girls? I have to confess I have the same problem as Saucy. I think I have you and Cyn melded into one in my mind. I'm going to have to work on that. I have the ingredients for you c.c.pie here and may try whipping one up later. Then I'll have it for breakfast. Pie's one of my fav breakfast foods, lol.
I've been wondering how Michelle's doing too. Not usual for her to be so quiet. Wish we could whisk Kenzie to her for Christmas.
Break time's over. Time to get back to the housework and see how much I can get done tonight since both girls will be here for a few hours tomorrow and I've got to squeeze in that grocerty trip.
Oh and Denise, my son could and still can make any room into a cave and he's 23.
I remember Rara Avis (Julie), Eden! She had a little girl, didn't she? I remember her telling us about their walks. That was awhile ago!
Decorations are officially up, and there are no lights this year (couldn't face the cords). But I'm pleased with them. I'll try to snap a couple of pictures tomorrow, no guarantee they'll be posted in a timely manner, though. I am pleased with the roping, I like the framed effect on the windows.
Candy, the helpmeet maintains that I have the single largest collection of "simulated fruit" on the eastern seaboard. He may very well be right. I used barely half of it to decorate this year.
Cortisone shots suck, Marian. My friend has gotten a couple in her hip and says they are no fun. I think of you as I bring in firewood and refine my stove skills. I have to empty ashes about once a week. And I make every trip count when it comes to bringing in wood during daylight hours. I made one very cold and dark trip to the woodpile and mastered that lesson. :) The Salon is cozy at 72-74 degrees.
The cur in the valise looks like a Cavalier King Charles spaniel to me. And any one of our cats would move right into a suitcase, so it made me smile. Even though I hate dogs.
I think about Christmas differently than I used to and I'm reminded of it when I hear Christmas carols. The first sight of the empty chair or a poignant moment gives good pause for reflection and an occasional tear. I add an ornament to the tree when someone I love dies. This year I will add a small bluebird with a black bow on it. Next year the bow will come off and my friend will always "be home for Christmas". We have some real dandies now and seeing them every year is a nice way to remember people.
Neo-Victorian that I am, I believe we need to place more importance on mourning than we, as a society, do. It's an important thing and losing a parent, sibling, or dear friend is a big deal!
'bug, at first glance, I thought your note said "ignite all" LOL-I had visions of a group hair singe party! Hope you have a wonderful and safe trip.
Love the idea of being one of the imaginary twins, candy! I can see us starting all kinds of trouble...glad the kids are coming early. Makes everything much more festive to have everyone home.
Eden, love the pics of Kate and Bella, who is definitely a creative little girl-her trees are terrific.
Welcome, Eileen. You will find this to be the most marvelous group of imaginary friends anywhere!
Denise, will definitely try to see the movie. We are big fans of Deneuve and it will give me a chance to brush up on my French.
Marian, still sending good thought your way. I am so sorry your shoulder has added to your woes.
Cindy, are you dug out yet? We are in pretty good shape, but didn't quite clear enough to get the car out of the garage without hitting the now 3' wall of snow along the drive. I'll dig out a little more tomorrow from that one spot. I wonder how long it will be before our piles melt!
So nice to have school closed for the week!
Well, all of you are so much more productive than I. Maybe I'll bake some cookies tonight. Problem is, DH doesn't eat them-there really is something wrong with someone who never eats sweets-so I end up eating them all. I always ask DS to come by and get something when I bake (a VERY rare occasion, mind you), but it takes him days to drop by and by then....oh well.
Hugs to all. Off to get the butter out to soften.
Well Geesh, you gals are flying arround getting stuff done.
I cleaned the house today but it took all I had to get it done. I'm dealing with a pretty rough round of what I think is arthritis in my back so every step is a painful one. Me and my vibrating chair pad are best friends this week.
Like Eden I have been putting off the grocery and last minute shopping. Hope to get to it tommorow. No tree yet. Will there be one? That is the question. I'm thinking buffet table decorations could cover it.
Welcome to Eilean. Hope you stick around.
Going to go look at Woodys pictures. Enjoy the evening all. Norma
This year I am giving tree ornaments to each family member for opening on Christmas Eve. There is one for Reed of course. I psychologist friend suggested this for Skyler's benefit, but it is for everyone's benefit me thinks. Chelone is right on the mark with her beribboned bird.
Today I received photos from DS. He was hiking in Deanne country, in new Hampshire with friends. Thought I'd share a few:
Time to prepare dinner. Enjoying the activity on this thread!!!
I confess that I bought 2 items at Target Eden, a new throw rug for the downstairs bathroom. I also looked for any sort of baby toy that was Mickey Mouse in nature ..I have only bought 2 gifts for Mr Baby (BILS have more than made up for my shortfall) and DD say he loves Mickey Mouse. Mickey however was nowhere to be found I guess you have to go to a Disney Store for that these days ? Since I abhor shopping at malls the chance of my visiting a D Store is slim to none. Could have done the internet route if Id thought about it sooner. Theres always next year !
Denise, I hope my hometown treats Marty right as he enters into the retirement gig- do you think hell be the retirement job type ? I think my first step will be to cut back to 4 days Which will probably put me at a 40 hour week after all these years, lol.
Back to the trenches, later all..
I haven't specifically bought ornaments for the tree in remembrance but I have many. The first that come to mind are a little bell that always hung on my grandma's tree, many ornaments that my mom gave or made me over the years, a beautiful crochet covered glass ball, a quilted candy cane, a little gold carousel, among others and I have a collection of little birdhouses that were hers that I now tucking in amongst the branches of my tree. Christmas ornaments are all about memories to me. I think of the story behind each one as I place it on the tree. Some gifts, some made by my children or Bella, some bought on trips or just out shopping with a certain person or at a certain time. This year for the first time Bella was old enough to listen to the stories as we unwrapped the ornaments and put them on the tree. One of my most special Christmas moments this year. Oh and she brought me a beautiful butterfly ornament she picked out herself and said reminded her of the butterflies in the garden last summer.
I don't know Kathy. The only Disney Store around here closed a year or so ago. I think I'd do an online search. I got Bella a couple of Christmas books that were from Mickey's Clubhouse. She likes to watch that once in awhile.
Chelone, Julie did have a little girl and I don't think she drove, mostly walked or rode a bike from what I remember. I could be wrong. And wasn't she an artist of some sort? Maybe someone else remembers?
Marian and Norma, so sorry to hear of your pain. Not a good time of year for that. Not that anytime is. Norma, a decorated buffet sounds perfect.
The crustless cranberry is in the oven. Smells good!
Oh, I'm linking the cutest thing. I ran across this idea this morning and if I had the time I'd try some of these. Maybe I'll have time next year. So cute!
Spending too much time here with you all and my housework is suffering. Oh well :)
"The crustless cranberry is in the oven. Smells good! "
Oops! Somehow when I refreshed the page it reposted. Oh well.
What I was going to say is...
I think the pie's cooled enough so I'm going to cut a piece. Join me Marie?
Really good! Yum! I wish I had some whipped cream or ice cream to go with it. That would be really good with the warm pie! Thanks for the recipe, Candy.
Ive been strategizing my grocery shopping- so far Ive done Whole Foods , regular grocery , and tomorrow is Trader Joes .Trader Joes was last because its easier to get in and out on a weekday, and a couple of their cheap-o flower bouquets will be de-constructed for the flower arrangements, which are to be done tomorrow. Im heading down the home stretch a good thing since all the guests arrive tomorrow ! BILS will not be here till very late afternoon, and DD could arrive anytime. Shell be pressed into cooking service the second she gets here.
Tonight I need to re-load all the magazines on my CD player with various musical selections..laundry is still going.
Eden there is a box of childrens books in my closet and Im hoping Mickey might be found there. Aiden will have a birthday in Feb so Ill try the internet for that .
Beautiful pics of DSs hike bug !
All for now..
Yes Eden, it was great with ice cream DH says. Mine I enjoyed plain but warm.
Yes Kathy, I enjoyed the photos too. I like snow pictures better than actually trudging through the stuff. I think you have the right idea with an old family book that has already been treasured.
I was just wondering if my flower arrangements would make it to next Sunday, Kathy. I did one with little blushed pears and red roses. The one on the table is evergreens with roses.
I loved the crustless cranberry pie, Candy. It came out good even gluten free, and my friend said she thought it was her favorite new dessert.
I have whipping cream in the fridge, Eden...want me to whip up some cream for you and GB?
We loved the picture of your son in NH, GB. He does seem to know how to enjoy mother nature. We looked at the forum while he was here and he seemed surprised to find you sharing pictures here, and enjoyed them. At the time you were sharing the Halloween creatures in your town.
I am sorry that my friends are grieving this Christmas. You are all so wise to face it and move through it. Chelone, your bird sounds perfect. What did you find for Reed, GB?
Denise, what tough news for you and Marty. I wonder if there is something he has wanted to do but hasn't because work has gotten in the way? He has such an exciting job, but I know how tiring it can be, too.
Someone put an idea in my head today and I can not rid my mind of it. I hope it won't sound silly to you. I wonder if I would be a good fit for the peace corps? Beekeeping is a big idea around the world, now. I have mechanical skills, too, as well as small business. It's something to think about as I get Sarah through her years of school.
I finished The Help by Kathryn Sockett...I cried. Loved it and was bummed when I finished it. I am on to Half the Sky which is an account of the "gendercide" that goes on in so many parts of the world. While it is hard to read, it is not too gritty...which is good. I don't need to be shocked, just educated :)
Hello to all I've missed! I hope as the days get longer that the aches and pains of the group will lift! No fun, Marian and Norma. Time for me to see what Woody's been up to...
Marie, your comment reminded me that I have an old Mickey Mouse book that I think belonged to my mom's cousin. It's dated 1943 on the inside cover with the inscription "Pleasant Reading" from and aunt and uncle I think as a Christmas gift.
I snapped a couple of pictures...
My mom used to read it to my sisters and me when we were small. I read it to my children and now Bella a time or two but it's not in the best of shape these days so I have to be careful.
Oh and the pictures of Adam in the snow are beautiful but I'm glad it's him there and not me:)
Saucy, whenever I read a post by you I'm struck by what a kind and thoughtful person you are.
I wasn't sure where to jump in but thank you so much for the warm welcome!
A little bit about myself? I'm going to keep this short so I don't interrupt the flow of the conversation here. Married, two grown up kids, my husband and I have the house to ourselves. I love gardening with perennials passionately but go crazy over hostas, coleus, Japanese Maples. Also love art, music, books, movies and plays. Animals are very special to me, especially shelter animals that need homes. That's it in a nutshell.
I'm really enjoying reading and looking forward to spending time here.
Saucy, we'll have to chat Peace Corps some day! I did my stint when I was fresh out of university, but having real skills and life experience is a really smart approach to this.
On the other hand, it is about timing in your life. I no longer have the energy for it I think. But one can "do good" absolutely anywhere (and be paid little). I think spending at least two years in a country teaches you so much more than visiting a place for 2 weeks.
For Reed, a tiny snowman. Cute but not too too sentimental or we'd all dissolve...
The Help is on our Book Club list for later in the year. We have some very heavy reading before that.
Now Eden, aren't those old hardbound books THE BEST!?!
Hoping Julie's household is buzzing and happy.
Eileen, just jump in and take over any time. Today is unusually active here. How nice! Wouldn't it be nice if friends like Sue, Ei, Michelle and Cynthia dropped in for a hello!
Marian, I am so sorry to hear about Tommy. My thoughts go to you and Nolon, on losing your little buddy. Hope your shoulder feels better.
Welcome to Eileen! Glad to meet you!
I will write more tommorrow. Right now I am dozing off at the computer. i don't know if it is because I have done so much I am whipped, or if it is my mind wearing me out thinking of all I still have to do. Probablyt the latter:)
Marie, Cynthia has surfaced on FB and posted wonderful photos of the greys romping in the snow. I hope Michelle will stop by soon.
I went up and looked at the box in my closet and there are only 3 books in it-I think I must have already given most of them to DD. Eden that MM book is fabu ! What a priceless keepsake.
Saucy, what Eden said. I know that you touch peoples lives , whatever you do. Its a pleasure to know you !
Back to the pile of CDs, looking for the missing copy of Mozarts violin concerto #3 . Where the h*#l did it go ?
Hi Eileen ! You are definitely in our demographic
Kathy in Napa , red wine tonight
Oh good grief...I just wanted to pop in this morning and tell you all that Half the Sky is terribly gritty and hard to read - like I said, it's not for pleasure, but for education :)
All I could think of this morning was that I had said it "wasn't gritty"...as I read over the most horrific parts....
I don't think I've ever thought of myself as thoughtful or kind! I miss being in new and exciting places...and like GB expressed, two weeks is never enough. Who knows...maybe its just a dream.
Gotta get moving - meeting with the accountant this morning!
Kathy maybe Mozarts violin concerto #3 has disapeared into the black hole my John Denver cd has.
Lol Norma, my Pink Martini CD is missing too, but I got a confession from DS , and all is well there. Maybe Mozart is in my car ?
In my frenzy of cleaning yesterday I vacuumed right through my haircut appt, so have rescheduled for this AM , and then from there it's directly to Trader Joes. The punch list is getting shorter !
Last transcript in the can, only delivery of exhibits remaining. I want to make really good Parisian chocolate before the day ends. And find my mom a chicken timer to replace the one she lost in the move. Something trendy for my niece who arrives today from cold, cold Cody, Wyoming. And I want to bake a Finnish braid bread this year from my old Farm Journal bread book. Do you guys replace spices every year? My mom says she buys in new spices every year at Christmas. I think this may have been one of the issues at our cookie exchange...busy people who never bake and then bake at the holidays with stale spices. No zip or zest to their cookies (don't tell 'em I said so!)
Sorry, but you are thoughtful and kind, Saucy. I always think of Samantha Powers' book, A Problem from Hell, where genocide reporting is concerned.
LA Times profiled Marty and the Port Pilot station today, linked below. He was afraid he'd come off like a doofus, but one of his comments made me lol, so very much like the stories he tells us at home. He just called to say the wind is howling, blowing hard in the harbor. Here too. The cockerel spins madly overhead, west/northwest and a couple 360s too.
To those traveling, be safe and warm.
I loved reading about the "salty pair"! I think the article painted a rather nice picture of the two - no doofuses :)
And Kathy vacuumed through her hair appointment, how funny. Can't say that's ever happened.
Okay, time for lunch. I'm going to go home for lunch - the accountant gave the books a clean bill of health! Looks like I'm first on her list for tax season...
Great article Kathy - but what will he be doing in retirement to get his adrenaline rush?! :-)
Very much enjoyed the read Denise. I feel like I just read a good book about a foreign (to me) topic for my book club.
I've done lots of small jobs this morning including writing up DSIL's special gift, a first load of laundry for the day, locating my hiking boots, dividing up 2 weeks worth of meds in those granny containers with the AM and PM boxes, locating my passport for ID, copying recipes to prepare while away, steaming a knit scarf to remain flat, answering phone calls, watering indoor plants, and so on.
Many more of these tasks to accomplish once DH returns from the dentist. His grades have been submitted.
Denise, mother always made a braid bread for Christmas breakfast. She was not a "crafty" person, but as a kid, this always seemed like magic to me. Now working with yeast alone seems like magic! As to spices, I have small containers that I refill often. Of course some of them I seldom use but I also like buying fresh ones in the market. I prefer fresh ginger for example, garlic, parsley, coriander too. When it comes to vanilla and almond extract, I splurge on the real thing and not the imitation stuff. And yes, I do buy saffron once in a while.
The sun is shining but it is COLD. (about 15F)
Back to work.
AARRGGHH-my computer is doing odd things-or maybe it's just me. This is the third start at posting today. Oh well.
Denise, great article on Marty-he came off wonderfully... and funny, too! I do replace my spices every year. I don't cook much any more, but I do want fresh spices when I do. My mother had some that were probably 20 years old! I always took my own when I went-she could never understand why when she had them already-lol.
saucy, dreams are always the beginning of marvelous adventures. If you decide you want to follow the Peace Corps dream, you will be amazing at it.
'bug, hope DH had a relatively easy time at the dentist-no fun. Planned visits aren't all that great-emergencies make it even worse. With luck, he is relaxed now and you are having a lovely evening. Your ornament idea is a good one. Isn't it strange to find oneself needing such accoutrements as those pill boxes? My instructional assistant and I were commiserating about how difficult is is to remember whether we had taken our pills and how we really did need to get those "granny" boxes.
chelone, buying a new ornament as a remembrance is such a nice way to honor your friends. I think it is so difficult in this hectic and demanding world for us to allow ourselves time to grieve and we do need that time. For me, I think I just feel so darn sorry for myself when I lose someone and sometimes we just get overwhelmed by the largeness of it all. No words of wisdom to make it better, just know that you, 'bug, woody and randy, and everyone are being sent warm, non-imaginary hugs.
Tomorrow, I hope to get into Old Town Alexandria for some shopping. That makes it sound like an excursion, doesn't it? Actually, it is a seven minute drive! There are some nice shops with unusual things, so maybe I can find one special little something for everyone.
I feel as if it is Saturday. Not used to being off during the week. These three snow days are delightful.
Time for supper. Tuck in with a good book tonight and remember that tomorrow night will be shorter.
Hi Idylls! You are all often on my mind and have been wanting to come by and sit and chat. I hope to come back later on tonight for a visit...it's been too long! But just in case my best laid plans go awry (did I spell that right? lol!)I wanted to make sure I was able to send my Christmas wishes to you all...
On a sadder note, Marian I am so sorry to hear about the loss of dear Tommy. He was a very special cat and I always thought of him as Scout's soul mate (in a cat version). :-) I know he will be greatly missed by you and I can't help but think of Nolon too...I'm sure he is going to miss his "walking to the mailbox" companion. I still remember some of those pictures that you shared...Hugs to you!
AAAAW, there's Scout!!! Thanks so much for dropping by!
I couldn't resist adding pictures too.
Here's Miss Ivy enjoying Thai food with Daddy:
Hi Ei! Wow, it's great to hear from you. I hope you do get back later and catch up with us a bit. Great card, I love the ornaments hanging over your porch and the matching urns and wreath. It's all very "you", happy and bubbly:)
A picture that I took today of Kate since you haven't seen much of her...
and Bella ballerina feet
I've been busy all day, just like the rest of you, preparing. I'm feeling good about what I accomplished today and now only have some baking and cooking to do. I'm beginning to think I just may get it all done in time.
Going back to read Denise's link...
OMIGOSH Bug! She is *too* cute! I can't get over how big Ivy has become. Love the expression on her face in the 2nd pic...I think she is going to be a woman of great substance and confidence...a force to be reckoned with..but in a good way. Love the hat too! Did you make that? I've taken to wearing hats a lot these days...great for bad hair days! :-)
Hi Eden...Great to see you too! Those little ballerina feet...to precious. How great Bella is taking ballet...I loved it as a child and always regret giving it up, although at 5' tall don't think I would have ever made a prima ballerina...lol! :-) So is Kate the newest grandchild? She's beautiful! I love her coloring and those rosey cheeks.
Okay, back to my work...hope to finish it tonight so that I can come back her and catch up.
Marie, I just refreshed and saw the Ivy pictures. Great minds think alike:) We'll make em look at baby pictures whether they want to or not, lol. Just wanted to say how cute Ivy is. Kate's just started eating people food too. We're going to have to get those two girls together one day. With Skyler and Bella to supervise of course:)
Christmas Tree, Fabulous Mantle Display
From Christmas 2009
Mr Baby From Christmas 2009
You asked for it.
Kathy in Napa
Ei, I love your entry decorations. So good to see Scout. I was really thinking about you since Our new Eileen has been posting. Do come back.
Ivy eating with dad is too cute. They look rather french.
Eden that is a precious picture of Kate. Love Bellas ballerina feet too.
We saw ten deer on the way home tonight. One with antlers Chelone. LOL I thought about you. Another spot we saw five running in a circle. Maybe they were waiting for Rudolph to show them the way? It gave us a chuckle.
I should be in bed, but I had two cups of coffee this evening.O^O
Denise I enjoyed the article about Marty and his job. I hope he will enjoy retirement.
Well and there
is Mr Baby, looking like a little man. Can't let those girls have all the fun.
Kathy your room is right out of a fashion magazine. Lovely
I certainly never asked for baby pictures of any sort! it's about time for Drema to put up some puppy pictures now, right? Swell.
As one of my friend's realized in the hospital after having her son... now she had to take it home and keep it alive since a lot of people knew she had one... . The newest crop of taxpayers looks well fed even if a trifle sticky.
Great article on Marty, Denise. I know a couple of the local pilots and they are the nicest guys. The only way I can describle them is that they have an aura of quiet confidence about them. They truly love the water and take their work very, very seriously. Several are volunteers on the local fire departments and no matter what the weather or the conditions they get the job done with humor and strict attention to the details of safety. I have the same feeling about several of the fishermen I know. And they tell some really funny stories about all the stupid stuff they see the "recreational" boaters doing, lol. It will be interesting to see what looms next on the Marty's horizon.
Time to go put some wood in the Salon stove. As soon as the helpmeet vacates the Compound I will be free to do the last minute things I have in mind. Crustless Cranberry Pie sounds intriguing, Candy. Saucy, if you think of it, how did you convert it to gluten-free?
Fabulous to see Ei drop in and good to know you're well. Scout really does make a perfect Yuletide accessory for your doorway.
Oops! Had to delete my photo...but didn't want to delete my Christmas wishes...so here we go again:
I'll be back in a little bit to chat!
Good Morning Idylls!
So good to see all of you....
Kathy that little Mr. Baby is adorable. No matter how you joke...I know he has to be the apple of your eye. Unlike Chelone (lol...Chelone you *always* make me laugh) I *love* seeing baby pictures, the more the better. How can you look into those precious faces and not smile? I recommend at least one baby face a day to keep the spirits up! :-)
BTW Kathy love the Christmas shot...it looks like such a warm and inviting place to relax. I'd like to be sitting in that chair right now...staring at the tree and drinking some hot cocoa with marshmallows and a shot of Bailey's in it! ;-) Ahhh...do I hear Mel Torme singing "The Christmas Song" or perhaps if your in a pensive mood it may be Joni Mitchell singing "River"?
Thanks Norma...I am enjoying the porch too...The best part is it was so easy and quick to put up and will only take me minutes to take down in cold blustery January. As I'm getting older my mantra is "keep it simple". How exciting to see deer on your own property! Though I remember T and her deer/elk woes and I know they can cause havoc...your property must be pretty as a picture with the deer running through...do you get snow?
So on my own homefront not a lot of new things going on...no grandbabies yet, but son has gone back to school and wants to get an engineering degree. I'm very proud of him as I know it's not easy to go back to school, support a home and work full time. He leaves for school at 05:00 a.m. and then works from 11:00 to 08:00 p.m. I feel badly that it has to be such a challenge. You always want life to be easier for your kids than it was for you. Still he is on the fast track there and will get both his bachelor's and his masters in 3 years. What *really* tickles me is that he wants to specialize in alternative energy...and I thought he was bored silly as a teenager when I babbled on about how special nature is to me and how important it is to do our part to keep the planet beautiful. :-)
Anyway, there *is* a new baby in my life...he's a great- nephew. He's just adorable and always brings a smile to my face. When I get a chance I'll have to post a few pics.
Sis is doing well, which is the best news. She has even started Weight Watchers and working very hard. I am both proud of and very tickled for her.
I haven't worked since mom passed. But, considering how many bread winners have lost their jobs, I'm am grateful that hubby has been able to hold onto his. I feel for all those families...but I also believe that things *will* get better. They are certainly all in my prayers.
Okay, besides babies, dear Scout never fails to bring a smile to my face. :-) He is ten years old now and struggling a bit. His liver enzymes are elevated, most likely due to the Rimadyl he takes for his arthritis. But he's happy and relatively pain free and still "enjoying life". I could take him off the Rimadyl, but as I see it, better that he lives a happy relatively pain free life to the end instead of *possibly* giving him a few more years but all in pain. We are both enjoying our time together.
Well, done with the all about me post. I'll talk to you later and do intend to post more often. The problem with not coming here regularly though is that you get "lost" in what is happening with everyone and then feel badly when you've failed to mention (because you haven't been here regularly) an important event that has gone on with another's life. Wow...what a run on sentence, but I hope you know what I mean? :-)
Oh and here is a link I hope you guys will enjoy...This lady cracks me up...I love her humor and the "bungey jumping" one is my favorite, although the "mother vs. daugher" and the "grocery shopping" one are pretty cute too. I don't know why, but for some reason she reminds me of Brenda (or at least how I imagine Brenda to be). :-)
Oh, and I remember Julie too...she was a sweetheart. I think she was into collage and paper making? If I remember correctly and had given me some good advice. I hope she and her little family are all doing well.
Chelone, I cheated and used Bob's Red Mill Gluten free All Purpose Flour, instead of regular old wheat flour :) It's a mix with potato and rice flours among other things....I've only used it in recipes where there is not too much flour in ratio to other things.
Sarah's getting a ride to school this morning - she's got a tin of pizzelis to carry and thought the bus might bust them up. Each kid is to bring a food special to their family to share with everyone.
Eileen, it's nice to meet you...please come in and stay a while :)
I'm sure I'll mix you up with Ei, who I'm happy to see and can't wait to hear all that has been going on in her life.
Kathy, Mr. Baby sure does have a lot under the tree :) It's beautiful and more fabulous than I had guessed! Frame that one for Christmases to come.
I am thinking that I might take some time today to covertly wrap presents and prepare for Santa's arrival. My plans this year seem too hectic to me. I had wanted to eat Chinese on Christmas Day and then go to see Avatar. My MIL has decided to roast a beast and make us attend :) That after the feast of seven fishes the night before...and my Christmas party the Sunday after! I'm gonna be full and full of Nick's family, for sure.
I'm gonna need a vacation next week!
Sarah's bugging me, "time to go!"
Mr. Baby! Look at those big baby blue eyes! Oh Kathy, he's a doll. And that's just how a Christmas tree should look, with piles and piles of gifts underneath for children to wonder about. Your room looks beautiful! Hope you and your family are enjoying a wonderful Christmas in it!
Ei, it's great to hear things are going so well with you and your family. Great news about your sister's health and your son's return to school. And thanks for helping me remember what it was Julie did. That's it!
Norma, we'll need some Christmas pictures of Wyatt, you know, to round it out here.
I'm baking today. Enjoy whatever it is you're all doing to prepare for the holiday. Have a great day friends!
How great to see Ei! It has been a looong time. Yes, I agree, Tommy was our Scout. He was more doglike than catlike. A forum that I occasionally visit had a thread on his breed(Manx),and how doglike they are.
I am enjoying all the baby pics. They are all three lovely babies.
My memory of Rara Avis was her love of wild flowers.
It is good seeing new names here. Although I welcome all, I can't be depended on to respond to all.....
Marie, I love your pics of your son in New Hampshire.
I guess I am about the only one here that has not tried the crustless cranberry pie. I keep forgetting to even get any cranberries! If it is not on my list, I forget, and even some of what is on my list gets missed!
It is thundering not far from here. I may have to shut down soon....Real winter weather is to arrive in a few days, and last for several days, with highs in the 20s and lows in the teens. I think I am prepared....I hope so. I have ashes to spread on the way to the woodshed. That is one of the more important things....getting in the firewood.
BTW, my arm and shoulder is better.
I'm loving the baby pictures and wouldn't even mind some photos of the older ones. Mind you, pet photos would be a FINE addition to the celebrating around here! The mantle, living room and Mr Baby are picture perfect!
Today we are packing the final items, and farming out the pet duties. I think I'll have time to be excited after that! Tomorrow, waaaay too early, we're headed out to Alberta.
(By the way, it was Vietnamese food, not Thai, that Ivy enjoyed. My mistake!)
Great to see Ei and the beautiful Scout !
Just dropping in before the guests all wake and general mayhem begins..One more grocery trip is on the agenda and today is hors d'ovres day at the Kathy house. I'll try to stop in later for a visit..
Waving to all !
I have just returned from a provisioning expedition. I can attest to the rising fever of festive madness out in the real world. There were a few squalling children; can't imagine how tough it must be to quiet them when all they see is, "buy, buy, buy!" and they lack the ability to be more discriminating. But, they're in fine company since too many adults are in the very same boat. ;) Beatings for all, I say.
I have 2 bags of cranberries, Marian. I was pleased to note that they freeze well and I think the crustless cranberry pie may just become a staple item around here, as it seems to have all the characteristics of a truly versatile food item, as well as the blessing of several very trusted friends. Quick and easy are the cornerstones of "staples" here... chocolate almond tapioca is another.
We seem to turn spices around pretty regularly, too. I don't have a particularly discriminating palette, though, so I probably wouldn't notice if the sage in the stuffing was vintage 1987...
I wonder what kind of cake Charlie had for his birthday?
Kathy, you've outdone yourself in the Christmas department... a truly Fabulous Mantel Display. I am duly impressed. I have to wrap some gift items now and don't really want to, if the truth be told. Maybe I'll blow it off until later or tomorrow.
Marian, that's good news that you're arm is better! Hope you're having a good day too.
Kathy, I think I could live on appetizers. I like nibbling. And they're all full of such yummy stuff!
On the spice front, I write the date of purchase on mine and toss them if I don't use them up within a year or so. I'm also one of those people who keep my spices all in alphabetical order so I know what I've got.
Pretty relaxed day here baking and listen to Christmas music in the background. Brad, armed with my list, has gone to pick up the last of the grocery items we'll need. I do plan on making an early morning run to Whole Foods tomorrow. I too greatly dislike being out in the frenzy of last minute shoppers, Chelone.
Oh Eden, I didn't dare admit too that I am among those who alphabetize my spices....
Rushing around here, but wanted to send some Canadiana your way. There are many versions, but this is a nice one.
Happy Holidays to ALL!
Let the baby photos roll! That Mr. B. is a handsome rogue, no two ways about it. I agree with Ei, Ms. Ivy already looks like she's ready to pound her fist at the U.N. What a little beauty Kate is. Love Bella's ballet shoe-clad feet. Enjoyed very much the photos of 'bug's DS in New Hampshire.
It might have dipped below 40 here last night, so we're creeping into the 30s. Who knows, we may get a freakish freeze this year like a few years back.
Ei, life is so hard. You couldn't be a 5-foot ballerina, and I couldn't be a late-in-life ballerina, starting lessons at age 21 a couple hours after work ;) Scout is so regal on your festive porch.
Kathy, that tree just needed a good knock down to sort its branches out. Gorgeous. (I hope nothing truly special was broken.) All your hard work deserves some serious celebrating.
Funny how music creeps back into the discussion at Christmas -- well, it always does when Ei drops in! Yesterday was caramel corn making day, hours and hours of it. I needed to hear something to keep me going, as each sheet bakes a full hour. Tango seemed perfect, or the neo tango, (tango electronica?) of Otros Aires. The boys took a bag of caramel corn with them last night to see Avatar -- which I did see, Saucy, opening day, movie geek that I am. Maybe you can take a movie break over the holiday. Tell your relatives movie tickets are a Christmas present to your kids. Or take them with you -- I took my mom, and she politely said, "It held my interest."
Thanks for the nice words on Marty's article. I emailed it all over the U.S. What he will do next is a very absorbing topic, to say the least!
Movie viewing last night was Summer Hours, another French film, this one with Juliette Binoche. Very absorbing for me, about dealing with possessions after a death in the family. Not took dark, just an interesting take. And the house and garden are beautiful. Garden mostly green, but old and lush. Our house was strangely emptied out, for a change, just me, Ein, and as many cats as can find a spot on me on the couch. They do get creative, with Newt going under the blanket to keep fights to a minimum. I ate fresh enchiladas and caramel corn ;)
'bug, I agree, bread-making is pure magic. Before marriage/kids I loved making bread, which my family finds hard to believe.
Thank you, Eden. Write date on spices. So simple.
The Huron Carol is so haunting, very beautiful.
Today is shopping day. Yikes!@ Looking forward to more holiday reports and photos.
Quick hello-love the Ian and Sylvia and Otros Aires links. That Huron Carol is really quite lovely. I need music playing most of the time, especially this time of year. Will be adding those you posted to my iPod if I can find them and get the process right-sort of like posting prints-don't do it often enough and need to relearn it every time-hmmm, not unlike my LD kiddoes!
Keep the pics of kids and pups/cats coming.
Uhoh, I alphabetize my spices, too, but DH can't be bothered, so we tend to work against one another on that, alas.
I'll catch up tomorrow!
I am capable of tremendous anal retentivity, but anyone who writes the dates on spice jars has WAY too much time on their hands and should be givin' Martha Stewart a run for her money. JMO
Huron Carol and the comments made me think about a things I haven't considered since reading "The Last of the Mohicans". It was disease that enabled the Europeans to subdue the native peoples of our hemisphere.
I have never successfully made bread. Can you say, "paving bricks"?. Lol. I am particularly fond of braids and sweet breads. A friend used to bring over a cardomom bread that was out of this world. I love caraway rye and cardomom and anything not overly spiced with anise. The "not too sweet" aspect of breads attracts me. Dickin' around with yeast does not, although admittedly I have never experienced great success in tha arena.
We will be having a roast of beast here on Christmas. I am toying with the idea of a day long buffet for us. Nothing formal just a leisurely day long feed. Toss in a couple of togas and it's downright decandent. No need to feed the pets, either. Christmas for everyone!
I'd be in for chinese food but I'd skip "Avatar", Saucy. The last movie I saw was the one about Julia Child and Julie the blogger (loved it). If that seems more fun than dinner with the in-laws I think you should do whatever pleases you. And schedule something with them in the next week. Our home is open to anyone on Christmas, but we don't plan on going anywhere. Goin' nowhere fast, that's what we are!
Greetings for the holidays - how wonderful to see /hear old new faces -- Ei and Eileen -- welcome and welcome back...
Kathy - your tree is incredibly beautiful - so laden down Im truly impressed.
Good luck, Denise, on the newly retired half n half -- sounds like you're in the spirit despite the sad first occasion of loss; those first milestones are poignantly memorable.
I seem to be suffering acute ADD - I make lists and flit and hop away from the things that really need doing - like vaccuming, cleaning... Have started the vacation until the 5th - yippee; getting into the mood w/ decorations and food planning. Survived the heaps of snow altho I still have one parking spot totally blocked -- guess I'll be scrambing for a guest spot for my guests - hopin to only get rain and not freezing stuff as they're waffling here - would like to see all the snow magically wash away, LOL, in time for guests to arrive.
Love the kiddie pics - such energy and wonder at all things they view - amazing the resemblances of relatives I see in their little faces.
I've had trouble posting and getting threads to load too here - dont know what's the deal lately - my computer or GW... very frustrating!
I confess to alphabetizing my spices - otherwise too many to find; but I dont buy new every year -- my Mom had so many exotic things she accumulated over the years in all the types of cooking she did and it never seemed to suffer - so on this one food item, I tend to hold on longer than other things.
The holiday slate here is a bit different - I decided on a Ham with a Honey/Cidar glaze and poached with Pears & Cranberries; mac & cheese for the vegetarian DD, asparagus, spinach salad w/ curry dressing, and 2 neat appetizers I've had elsewhere -- a fig/olive tapenade on goat cheese and a bacon/swiss dip that's heated -- usually go the prime rib route but decided to go a bit easier and less stressful route - LOL, we'll see about that!
Gotta go check out those links I missed in breezing thru here. Hope to check back in more routinely but I seem to be afflicted with lazi-lazi...
Well you see, Chelone, I had these things called children and they're expected to show up for these Christmas-y things...even though Chinese and a movie was our original family plan. My MIL changed it about a week ago.
Someday it will be my turn to decide what we (I) do for Christmas :)
I guess I'd better go wrap some more...I'm trying to pace myself. Sarah keeps asking if I have more to wrap. She's the one who can't wait until Christmas morning this year! She's quite persistent...sugarplums in her head and all...
What can I say, Chelone. I think I'm just naturally organized. I find it faster and easier to keep things straight from the get go than to have to hunt around or guess about something. I'm one of those everything in it's place kind of people. I have friends though, that are like you, and that kind of stuff drives them crazy. I can't relax in a disorganized mess, and they can't relax unless things are "comfortable" as they call it. I'd probably drive you crazy:)
I bake bread, but use the easy method from the book Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I have to watch myself though. Homemade bread can pack on the pounds if it's always around. Or maybe it's the butter that I feel I have to slather on.
The Huron Carol was beautiful Marie.
Cindy, your menu sounds perfect and very special. Glad to hear you have some time off to unwind.
Saucy, it's hard juggling all the family obligations at the holidays when you have kids I agree. That's why Jen and Randy decided right off to have everyone to their home at Christmas so they could stay home.
I've been baking all afternoon. Graham chewies, shortbread, raspberry bars and I also made two batches of fudge, chocolate and peanutbutter, which is my favorite. The shortbread is in the oven now and then I'll call it done. I can't believe that tomorrow's Christmas Eve already.
Eden, you would feel right at home in the Salon. I take good care of my tools. Spices are not my tools, but they are your's! when does your TV show premier, kid?? you and Bellatheball could blow Martha outta the water. ;)
Family dysfunction is a beautiful thing, Saucy. Ask me how I know! Lol. I say the sooner you take control of the holiday in question the better off you will be in the long run.
Cindy, your menus appeals to me. Yummy! I'm off until about the same time. And I have lots to get done in the interim.
I CAN believe it Eden! Just 7 hours and we're OFF! Phoebe is away with Sparkles the Labradoodle and the house feels empty as can be. I watered all the plants, defrosted the basement freezer, etc.
DD is having an afternoon open house tomorrow, so it will all start as soon as we land. Christmas dinner at DSIL's sister's place and all the family drama to watch. ;) Then Skyler goes to his Mom's. On the 26th, yet another Christmas dinner at DSIL's brother's acreage. Other festivities and invitations after that. If pressed into service, I can always make no crust cranberry pie! We'll be overweight zombies by the time we return.
Now to survive the airport nonsense.
Can't wait for the Christmas photo thread in the New Year.
Enjoy it all my friends, whether peaceful at home or busy, noisy and child (and pet!) centered!
I skimmed along and wanted to add my favorites for Christmas Carols. Eric Tingstad- The Gift, and Kurt Bestor, can't remember the name of the CD. They are both instrumental, and peaceful. You can google and listen to them at Amazon.
kathy, love your mantle, Christmas tree and Mr. Baby! He grew up. They change quickly don't they?
Denise, I hope your husband enjoys his retirement. I liked the article. It was well written, and your husband sounds like a nice guy. Some of the things they put in print in our local paper make no sense at all, because of the way it is written and I can't believe they are paying these reporters.
Chelone, Charlie is dinosaur crazy. he had a triceratops and T Rex on his cake, baked by his mom, and decorated by his dad. I will ask them for a pic. I saw Julie and Julia and enjoyed it too. Skip and I hit the jackpot last night. The local video store was selling DVD's 3 for $5.00, and VHS 10 for $2.00. they had a lot of never used Disney movies on VHS and Charlie has a VHS DVD combo. We cleaned up on both kinds, and now I have a bunch of new chick flicks, Skip has boy stuff.
Ei! Nice to see you. Love the porch pic. Glad your sis is doing well.
I am going to bed. My knees ache, and I am in a lot of pain. I think I need new ones, but am definitely scared. I am going to give my Son in law a vermicomposter for Christmas.
Bug, here's wishing you safe travel, and much fun with the fam:)
Hi to everyone I didn't mention! I will try to post more tommorrow after knee recovery.
Need about an hour to compose a sensible post. It's way past my bedtime,but here is some action from today.
Starting out on the river trail From Christmas 2009
Aiden views the view From Christmas 2009
The Napa River From Christmas 2009
Time for appetizers ! From Christmas 2009
All my very best wishes to all my Idyll friends for a fantastic and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Even Chelone can't hate this dog! ;-) I've added a link below.
Deanne your card is gorgeous. You have such a talent and an eye!
Marian glad to hear your shoulder is better. I hope you have a warm and peace filled holiday.
I admit I alphabetize my herbs and spices too! I didn't know there were so many of you out there...thought it was my dirty secret...lol!
Great to see you too Drema, but sorry to hear about your knees...I hope you feel better soon.
I agree Bug...I'd love to see all the babies and in my mind anyone under 21 applies. :-) I love the look on Aiden's face in pic 2...what a cutey patootey.
Well...I'm in a rush so I gotta go...but plan to enjoy Drema's & Woody's separate posts today.
Did a quick check here and Ei, I completely dissolved with that video. Glad everyone's old friend is now a new friend for me!
Kathy, your pics are great as always-Aidan is a handsome boy! I love your tree and mantel. Made me realize how little I have done inside to decorate this year. Maybe tonight I will go crazy and put everything out and about.
Thanks for the card, Deanne-perfect!
Marian, glad your shoulder is better. Drema, sorry your knees aren't. I am inclined to want to smack whoever first called these the 'golden years'-wish medicine would come up with an easy fix!
'bug sounds as though it will be a lively, laugh-filled holiday for you. I am so glad.
Hope everyone is enjoying their hustle-bustle or serenity as the case may be.
Tonight's pork roast is in the pot and now it's off to Whole Foods. I love the idea of an all-day buffet, chelone. I may just go for that since it is just the three of us this year.
I'm reading along but just can't seem to be able to get a post together - an incredible sadness has descended over our lives. There is lots of nasty business going on and because of it DD won't spend Christmas with Kenzie and even though she's here in Iowa we might not get to see her either. There are so many terrible things that have happened its almost unbelievable. Just when we think things can't get worse something happens - its almost daily. Our minds are flooded with things we've never had to deal with before. Christmas has basically been canceled because of a mega snowstorm, which is predicted as the worst in 25 years. It sounds like Rick and I will spend the next 3 or 4 days here alone.
Sorry to be such a bummer, but just thought you might wonder where I've been.
I am really enjoying all the wonderful pictures especially the little ones - hold them tight and enjoy your Christmas with them.
Oh Michelle, I am so sorry to hear it. I wish your daughter were with you now. Take care of yourself.
This news just breaks my heart, Michelle.
Michelle, I have been waiting for you to pop in. Some years the holidays just can't be salvaged, or are a pale version of holidays past, and I'm so sorry this may be one of those years for you, but it'll come around again. Thinking of you and your family.
Warm holiday wishes to all the idylls.
(((Michelle))). I'm sorry it can't be a real hug, but consider the sisterhood fully rallied around you. It must be terrible to watch things deteriorate and be unable to make it right for your child and your granddaughter. Particularly sage advice from Denise, too. Sometimes the holiday can't be salvaged, through no fault of our own.
Deanne, a lovely shot of a beautiful cardinal brought a smile to my face this morning.
Ei, you don't seriously think I'll weaken in my prejudice toward canids, do you?
Here're some shots from a day/so ago:
Michelle, I'm so terribly sorry to hear of your sadness and troubles. It makes it especially difficult when these things happen over the holidays. Hugs and positive thoughts are being sent your way. I'll be thinking of you and family.
Chelone, your decorations a beautiful!!!!! Love it!
Love the decorations this year, Chelone. So nicely done!
Bella's here with Brad and I now. We let her open some gifts and now she's busy as she can be playing with them. I'm content to just sit and enjoy her.
(((Michelle))) I am so sorry to hear of your sadness and I am so very sad for Kenzie. I hope it turns out that you and Rick do get to see her after all. Our wee ones need as many people as possible to love them no matter what is going on with the adults in their lives. Life just stinks sometimes, doesn't it? I am sorry it is now for you.
Chelone, your bedecked windows and door look splendid. I am most impressed by the addition of the fruit.
I am filling my head with visions of all of you with your little ones and full, festive houses tonight (and memories of our past years like that). Sugarplums?---they're filling my belly!
I hope for peace and fond memories for all my idyll friends.
Im glad you checked in, Michelle - I was worrying about you. We all feel for you and Im sorry that such troubles have descended upon your near and dear -- I hope that charity will open in certain hearts and realize that all children need as much love and family as the world allows -- Im sure Kenzie is thinking of you and her Mom no matter what. I hope you find solace with Rick and thoughts of other holidays fondly remembered. I am certain this one will pass and a bigger, better memory will take its place in the future. It still sucks in the meantime, tho.
Love your decorations as always, Chelone - yeck, you've got less snow than I do!! What's wrong with that concept, LOL?
Still got lots on my to-do list but I think at least the vacuum and dustcloth can be put away; I keep thinking I'll pull more Xmas decorations out, but seems silly when it's so close at hand.
Thinking special thoughts to all our idyllers and lurkers alike -- Merry Christmas and hopes for a peaceful, pleasant one in every way possible.
Michelle, I am so sorry. I have pretty much 'been there, done that', as you know. I hope it all works out well for your DD and Kenzie.
It is hard to miss out on so much of your grandchildren's lives.
Michelle, I wanted to write a note and tell you how sorry I am that you are having to deal with this difficult situation, and hope it soon starts heading in a good direction for all of you. My thoughts are with you and your family.
The Crustless Cranberry pie is fabulous!
And yeah, we have 4-5" of snow and that should be pretty much gone if the warm temperatures and forecasted rain materialize.
Wrecks managed to down a box of truffles that the helpmeet did not secure adequately. We all know chocolate is toxic to dogs... we can always hope. Nothing major so far, but he's been extremely interested in dashing off to the woods whenever the door is opened. I fear it will be a long night for the boy and his dog. Lol.
We had a late lunch out today and were surprised to see Santa sitting at the end of the bar. There was a little boy in the restaurant (about Bella and Kenzie's age) and he was beside himself to see Santa in there. Bless the guy's heart, he was Santa all the way, hoisting the little guy onto his lap and speaking with him very earnestly. :)
About the simulated fruit; I stumbled on a book in the library several years ago now that was all about Christmas decorations in the Colonial Williamsburg tradition. I was instantly besotted. And have been buying "falsies" ever since. I really, really want to add some antlers to the mix... it's that pagan blood in me, I think.
Chelone, I love your home decorations! Hope Wrecks is okay.
Saucy, my son saw Avatar the other day, and he liked the 4D effects. Hadn't heard wht he thought of the plot.
Deanne, that is a fine Cardinal. Tonght I saw a Robin in my back yard. I guess I didn't know that they hung around up here in the snow?
Tommorrow I will be thinking of all of you!
Michelle, nothing I could say will ease your distress, but know that I am thinking of you and your family especially Kenzie. From one mother to another I know how it can hurt.
Deanne thanks for the wonderful card and wishes.
Chelone, Your decked out house is just right. I hope Rex is better by morning. We used to have a bassethound that loved chocolate and would snatch a cake right off the counter and always ate chocolate at easter. That was before I knew it was dangerous for dogs. She never had any problems from it.
Dreama great score on the DVDs and VHS tapes.
We have been having rain instead of snow. Cold weather coming in tonight but probably not much snow. Our christmas won't be until tomorrow eve.
I've missed many of you but am wishing you all Merry Christmas and good cheer.
Thinking of you, and Kenzie.
I meant to get back here earlier today and then things got hectic...
Michelle, I'm so sorry to read what you are going through. I can hear the distress in your voice and it makes me hurt for you. Not diminishing the pain, fear and hurt I imagine you are going through right now, but things will get better. I know that they will because you are a strong, positive, upbeat woman with a levelhead. I have faith that you will figure out whatever you can to make the best of the situation. Hang in there and know that we are all sending our good thoughts and prayers your way. And *you* are *never* a bummer...
Glad to meet you to Cindy and all the new people I look forward to getting to know.
And Chelone...your decorations are *awesome*. Everything is so perfectly placed...I can see the seamstress (sorry "seamstress" doesn't even seem to be a good enough word for what you do) in you.
Merry Christmas, friends. It came quite early this year: 5:02 a.m. to be exact. That after a late night of wrapping for me :)
I'm headed back to bed for a bit but wanted to say Merry Christmas to you all.
I've been up since about 5. Both stoves are fed, the wood boxes are restocked, the dog has been out (none the worse for wear for his chocolate bender), the catbox mined, and 2 cups of coffee consumed, and the tree is "on". The helpmeet has just wandered out of the boudoir.
I'm certain there a lot of excited youngsters in Idyll land. My fondest wishes for my virtual friends on this holiday, esp. those with heavy hearts.
Merry Christmas to you all!
Merry, merry Christmas my friends.
Misty is an enthusiastic present-opener - but a messy one! Christmas morning aftermath:
MERRY CHRISTMAS IDYLLS!
My first post on our new computer - Yay!! We had a lovely day here with Mum and hope Christmas brought joy to all your houses.
I've not had a chance to catch up but I did read this might be a sad one for Michelle. Hugs to you (((Michelle)))
The family await my presence for our second round of turkey and trimmings and Floating Islands for dessert made with this morning's eggs. I'll be back tomorrow.
I have much to read on this idyll, but I'll jump in here before we march on to #466. First of all, Michelle, I'm so sorry to hear of your troubles. I hope that things improve in the future. This weather has just added a layer of complexity to things that we all could have done without. Hugs to you, Rick, your daughter and Kenzie.
I finally got some photos taken of the decorations and the tree. Our internet connection has been poky the last day or so; I'm wondering if the ice storm that we had late on the 23rd has something to do with it. But here goes!
Here's the Great Insane Christmas tree with decorations.
I pulled out all of my mom's old Shiny Brite ornaments that date back to the 50's.
Meanwhile, over on the hall table there was a gathering of Santas.
They were beat hands down by the snow men on the mantle.
Last but not least, I have my mom's favorite Nativity set that I think she got in 1962 or 63. She added the lights a year or two later, and they still work!
The weather has been the fly in the ointment here. Nothing disastrous, but just enough of a factor to make things more complicated. We woke up on Christmas Eve to find that our river birch had split in two in rather dramatic fashion. It looked like a giant had come by with an axe had cleaved it in half. Then there were a series of frantic phone calls as the 78 and 80 year old in laws were supposed to deliver meals on wheels that day. We figured folks who were getting the meals were not likely to be out early clearing the sidewalks, so there was a last-minute substitution of DH and his sister. All went well, but we had to scramble a bit to get everything else done in time.
Chelone, have I ever told you that I love your falsies?
I'm going to try and read all that I missed. I hope all my idyll friends are safe and warm and enjoying some time with those they love.
It's really hard to follow up on the adoration for Chelone's falsies, V..., LOL... Your decorations are totally in sync w/ your abode and I love the old decorations!!
Im going Whew... it's all over and Im tucked into my nightie - we had a small but lovely gathering but I confess I must be out of habit of making holiday dinners (altho I've done in the last several years) - I did a lot of talking to myself (out loud) for the merriment of guests but it seemed to go well. We've been blessed with nasty rain - but considering the other possibilities, Im quite happy with that - I hope Michelle is not getting pounding -- no one else needs to achieve 25 yr old record breaking... (havent checked the weather reports)
Merry Christmas and I hope for peace and ease for all my idyll friends.
Thanks everyone for the kind thoughts. You all are so great! I did talk to Kenzie yesterday and will get to see her when the weather lets up. The snowplow hasn't been past in 3 days. We are still hoping to have our Christmas gathering tonight with Rick's kids but we'll have to see. If the plow doesn't come by he plans to blow snow all the way to the highway. I'm doubtful as there is an 80% chance of more snow for today. Tomorrow looks promising. So I hope to go to Walmart and buy more gifts for Kenzie before we pick her up. Since SIL didn't tell anyone that he was going to bring Kenzie to IA, I had sent all her gifts to FL.
The crustless cranberry pie and real whip cream was our dessert yesterday. I also made it earlier with the blueberries and it was fabulous too.
Chelone, the decorations are wonderful and suit your house so well.
V, the insane tree made me smile. Your nativity looks like the same figures that I have from my grandma. My mom has them too. She bought her's one at a time at the dime store. I have a few that say 29 cents on the bottom.
What fun it must be to watch Misty unwrap presents.
Kathy, Mr. Baby is just as cute as can be. I'm sure you have a fabulous Christmas with him around. Christmas is just so much fun through the eyes of a child.
Eden, love all the Bella and Kate pictures both here and FB. I also enjoyed Brad's song.
So lovely to have Ei stop in for the holidays. I love the way you decorated your porch and Scout sitting in the middle is perfect.
Deanne, gorgeous card - the picture is fabulous and the border perfect.
Our electricity has blinked on and off for the last 2 days so computer time is brief. My computer is old and takes so long to come back on. I did get a little time to print 3 8 x 10 garden pictures yesterday that I intend to frame and hang above my sofa.
I had the local news on in the background and just heard a report from Jeremy's girlfriend about the weather where they are. She was calling in reporting. I guess I don't need to call and ask him when his GF is a reporter. She mentioned that they spent part of the day yesterday helping people who were stuck.
Well, I guess I'd better get the house in order in case things do happen today. The food is all last minute stuff so I will wait to see what the weather does.
Oh, yippee, Michelle-your own little Christmas miracle. I am so happy for you!
No time for anything, haven't even skimmed here very well. Too much eating, loads of family, etc. The gifts with Skyler...just crazy!More about that another time.
Michelle, warm hugs to you. I just want to add that it really and truly does get better at some point! Let me be the first to wish your family a most happy new year!
I think I am being subjected to Future Shop boxing day sales as a new (Oh honestly!) TV set is what DSIL desperately needs. ;)
Ivy is...what can I say? PERFECT.
Lovely Deanne....beautiful card!
Chelone, your fruitiness, magnificent decors! Indy dog somehow swallowed a whole box of chocolates and their foil wrappers last week it seems. No damage.
Drema, Phoebe sympathizes with your knee issues. Do have them checked out!
Marian, glad your shoulder has improved. We are supposed to make a Christmas puzzle today, so will be thinking of you for sure.
V, lovely lovely warm interior decorating!
To Woody, Mary, Cindy, Candy, Cyn, Kathy, Denise....EVERYONE, enjoy it ALL!