Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Where have I been? My body has been right here where it always is, my mind, somewhere else. I have no projects, no fun pictures to post so not much blogging from me. I have read my favorite blogs but made no comments, just a weird, funky, into myself mood going on. I promise this too will pass. Please know that I have enjoyed reading and will be back in the groove soon.

Mostly I have been busy trying to put life back into the order it was before we started the Christmas count down. It amazes me the work, enjoyable as it is, and effort, we as humans put into one day, just to have it over in a flash of wrapping paper. Then,there is the undo of all we have done. The inside decorations are down, just need packed up again for storage along with the wrapping paper, etc.

It has been a great holiday season for our family. I am sad to see it end but yet, ready for the every day hum drum life again.

Julia and Colin are coming to spend the night..........their Dad got a overnight babysitting session on New Year's Eve coupon in his stocking! His parents aren't as available to stay with the kids as they were, so nights out are a big treat for him and DD. The great white hunter and I stay in on New Year's anyway, so figured we might as well just enjoy the kids and let them enjoy a night out.

Promise a visit to all my favorite blogs and a nice long post coming soon. Thank you for your great Christmas wishes. Keep safe on this last night of 2008!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


I know the outside world is not at peace, there are folks out there whose holiday was far from peaceful. In my little corner of the world, peace is the only word I can find to express the feeling.

As a child, Christmas was rarely peaceful. My Dad and his brother's usually marked the occasion with large amounts of alcoholic beverages, and the chaos that followed was never remembered as peaceful. The great white hunter and I vowed as young parents not to have those kind of memories for our kids.

So my little family gathered today and we had a wonderful time together. Our oldest, disabled son was here for the day so the nest was full. A trip home is a real effort for him and his wheel chair. Functioning in a social situation like this is also hard for him but he did fine and enjoyed himself a lot.

When we all sat around the table, and I saw my loved ones with their cheap plastic glasses, I knew that I had been given the greatest gift of all, my family with me on this day. The food was good, the gifts wonderful and the memories and good feelings were all anyone could ever hope for. Long distance family was reached by phone. Again, I am truly blessed, again I need to count those blessings and give thanks. I am among the lucky ones because I know the true meaning of peace at the end of this day.

I hope peace was a part of your celebration and if not, I hope you find the strength to find that peace in the new year.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

And That Is The Way It Is

Tomorrow morning, the great white hunter and I will welcome our grown children plus spouses and two grandchildren to our house for Christmas breakfast. We will have home fried potatoes, eggs, bacon, sausage, biscuits and gravy and toast made from homemade bread that I just took out of the oven.DD is bringing a new dish for us to try. It is an annual affair.

I bought a new table cloth along with matching napkins and nice napkin rings. I ironed the napkins and the table cloth. I dug out the crystal candle sticks and the good dishes. (not china but not my everyday dishes).

So, when the kids reach in the cupboard to get a glass for their orange juice or whatever drink for breakfast, they will all grab one of the plastic glasses that I got at WalMart for 4 for $1. Never fails..........the only thing that has changed is it used to be the big plastic cups from one of the hamburger places that had Star Wars pictures. I threw those away when they moved out! Is there real glassware in said cupboard, YEP!

Hope everyone is enjoying time with their loved ones no matter what kind of container they are drinking out of! HOHOHO!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas!

I really have not fallen off the earth! We have just been busy with Christmas things, crafting, baking, buying, wrapping, decorating, all know the drill! It is a fun time of year at my house when I try my best to keep up with the great white hunter and his giving, believe me, it is a full time job! DD is as bad, these two get into Christmas with full hearts and I am support staff!

My wish for all of you, is that this Christmas, you find the true meaning for YOU. That might be something different for each and everyone. So, be it simple or more complex, I hope whatever makes this Christmas season special comes your way.

See you after Santa does his thing!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Flashback, Microwave Peanut Brittle

I have pictures in the camera for a nice post with pictures. Maybe tomorrow, or did I say that last time? It is coming, I am getting there........

Meanwhile, if you are in the middle of your holiday baking or making plans, you might want to check out this post from last year for my super easy peanut brittle made in the microwave. I make this for the folks at my great white hunter's work and they think I am just so talented and work so hard. So I just smile and nod and go spend another 15 minutes making another batch. (had to allow time for the cleaning the dish).

Microwave Peanut Brittle

Saturday, December 13, 2008

My great white hunter

Yes, I went to school and yes, I did my homework, hey I even took four years of Latin. (why, who knows, I think it was to keep out of PE!)

I do not capitalize the letters on "great white hunter". Because if I capitalize the letters, it could be ANY Great White Hunter. No caps on the name makes a very special great white hunter............MINE!

I do not post pictures of my family either. There is something about putting pictures of my family on the Internet that makes me very uncomfortable. So, you have to imagine what a lady, who would not put capitals in the name she calls her husband, would look like. Did I mention that I am a little odd in my thinking too????

Thank you all for going along with my "quirks" and coming back to visit now and then.

Speaking of my great white hunter, we got a lovely card from Amelia that was also addressed to the great white hunter. He asked me why it was addressed like that? He had no interest in the blog except that it seems to make me happy. I told him because that was what I called him. He just answered, "Oh". Poor man knows me well enough to just let it go at that.

Stars in My Eyes!

This time of year, it is not supposed to take much to put stars in your eyes and make you happy. I am a simple girl and it does not take much any time of the year to make those twinkles!

Eleanor Burns is my all time quilting diva, I would be thrilled to meet her or even catch a glimpse. I just missed her at the Road to California quilt show last year and was so sad. Another of my all time favorites is Patrick Lose. I watched him on Simply Quilts a few years ago and have so admired his work. Enter Ebay.......and I have a couple of his books right there along with Eleanor on the shelf. Never made one of their quilts but I have longingly looked at the quilts in those books and read every article I could find about them. I do so admire their talent and the way they handle their success.

So, I found Patrick Lose's website the other day........and discovered he lives in Phoenix. I commented an AZ type comment and HE ANSWERED. I had a email from PATRICK LOSE! WOOHOO! Made my day for sure. He suggested that I take one of his classes.......would that make the old eyes sparkle.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Starting the Decorating

One by one, I am digging things out of the bins in the garage. If I keep it up at this rate, it will be time to take them down before I get them all up!

I made this guy (and five others) a couple of years ago. The pattern was in a Christmas craft magazine long gone and forgotten so I can't give credit. Note the blanket stitch........I think if it has blanket stitch, it follows me home.

You can see the edges of my Jim Shore Christmas figures.......more on them tomorrow.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Check out the post under the Spritz post........Ellie is HOME!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Start Your Ovens.........

Spritz are another cookie that I have made forever, but I only do them once a year at Christmas. I do MAJOR cookie and candy making at Christmas and this year will be no different. The great white hunter just changed to day shift but wants to take cookies to the folks on night shift too, so I will be playing in the flour and sugar!

These are great because they are really better after they sit for a few days, so I make them early in the month and freeze them, then dig them out when the time comes. I pack them in plastic freezer bags, then put those bags in a container with a lid to keep them from getting crushed in the freezer.

If you have never made them and want to try, you need one of these. I used a coupon and got mine at Joann's a few years ago but Micheal's or any store that carries Wilton cake supplies should have them. I saw them at Target last year. Before I got this, I had a copper colored one from MIRRO. Let's say it didn't always work so well. Your dough had to be just the right consistency or it was a pain so this was a great investment. (might be why I only made them once a year too!).


Cream together;

2 cups butter (I use margarine)

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 teaspoons almond extract

Beat in;
2 eggs plus enough water to make a half cup.

Stir in after mixed;

4 to 4 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

Push through cookie press on to ungreased cookie sheet. Sprinkle with colored sugar, bake 10 to 12 minutes at 375 degrees or until lightly brown around the edges.


For years I baked a fruit cake at Christmas for my father in law. It started when I decided I wanted to try a fruit cake (why I will never know) and he was the only one I knew who liked fruit cake. He used to like a slice with a bowl of canned peaches in the evening. So, every year I would make the cake and mail it, and the kids would say, "Mom made the fruit cake, now it's Christmas." When he died nine years ago, I could no longer make the fruit cake, the very thought of it still brings tears to my eyes. It was a very special part of a relationship he and I had.

So, we needed something that meant the start of Christmas. That something had to be different than the decorations, the cards or the gifts and wrapping. It had to be something that was the "spirit" of Christmas for our family. I never found just that one thing, but every year starting in December, I wait for the thing to happen that means the Christmas spirit is alive and well in our hearts. Something past all the other $$$$ spending crazy, hype stuff that has taken over what I think should be a simple holiday.

One year, it was the gift of a pair of hand crocheted slippers from a lady who lived at my disabled son's apartment complex. I had cleaned out my yarn stash and given it to her in the early fall. She sent me the slippers and a note saying that thanks to my several bags of yarn, she was able to make gifts for her family for Christmas. I shed a few tears over that one. Another time it was a package that my uncle and his wife sent me that held my beloved grandmother's hand written cookbook and several pieces of household linen that she had embroidered. Again, lots of tears at the mailbox. It was a complete surprise and worth it's weight in gold.

Do these things happen because it is Christmas or do they happen because this time of year I am open to finding the joy in something? I am not sure but my family waits for me to find the special thing that says, "It's Christmas." Then we can get on with the crazy stuff.

I am done waiting this year........It is officially CHRISTMAS at our house. Wednesday night DD called and said that they thought they had found Ellie! After a week of daily trips to the pound, constant emails and searching everywhere they knew to search, along with posting a reward and many flyer's in their neighborhood, it turns out that Miss Ellie took a trip to TUCSON! They received a call from a student at the U of A in Tucson who said she had been home in Gilbert for the Thanksgiving weekend. When she was loading her car to go home, Ellie happened along. The girl wanted to find her owners, but her mother said she was NOT going off to Tucson and sticking her with that big old dog. (much as I love Ellie, I understand! LOL) So, in the car went Ellie and off to Tucson with the girl. The mother saw one of the flyer's and called the girl, who then called my DD. She brought her home last night and she was loved and well cared for during her adventure.

It is Christmas officially at our house. The very idea of a young college student loading a big old yellow dog with skin problems in her car and driving off to school is proof that there really is goodness in people's hearts. The mother seeing one of DD's lost dog flyer's......well, that is up to you to interrupt how that happened. Thank you all for your prayer's in that direction.

Ellie is home with her loving family! Oh, darn, here comes those tears AGAIN!!!

What makes it Christmas at your house? Where do you find your Christmas spirit?

Monday, December 1, 2008

No Word on Ellie

Here we are Monday morning and there has been no word on the missing Ellie. Thank you all for your prayers........please keep on praying for her safe return. She was wearing a tag with their address and phone number and a rabies tag from the county. She did have to wear her collar loose because of skin allergy so we are hoping she did not lose it along the way.

I will post if they hear any news.

Nana with her fingers and toes crossed and counting on the goodness of someone out there to see that she gets home to her family.