Monday, December 31, 2012

Farewell Red December

 Good bye 2012!  Do you have a 2013 calendar yet?  I don't.  I must hop over to Amazon to find the new Susan Branch calendar right away! Her calendars (and everything else she produces!) are perfect.  Really.
 The tree is back in the big raggedy box, but I kept the yards of tree bunting out and I am hanging it all around our bunting-draped abode.  I use scrapbooking stacks and bias tape.  EASY!

 The pom poms are staying, too.
 The fairies are staying in the living room, too.  I have twenty four fairies and they are hanging about, promising gardens and spring time and new plans for flowers in the midst of snowy ground.

 Some of my handed down doilies have surfaced.  My mother-in-law and my grannies crocheted beautifully, didn't they?

 2012 was The Year of the Toadstool here.  While I still love and hunt for toadstools, they have had their year.  I have had substantial toadstool shrinkage.  I'm clumsy.  I broke a big red one while vacuuming yesterday.  My next post will feature my Christmas books (the light this morning isn't bright enough for a book photo shoot).  I'll tell you that this year is the year of the ___________ .  Stay tuned.
My sweet friend Reve gave me the most glorious basket.  It's an African market basket, round and soft.  I'll continue my brightly colored knitting and crocheting.  
I also have plans to create Mr. Badger, so he can welcome home the Willows from their Grand Tour.  They might be home within a few weeks.  They are still in New Zealand with Angel Catherine.  They are enjoying the sun while they can!  
I received a beautiful copy of TWITW from Bill and I'll show it to you soon.

Happy New Year to you!  I pray your year is full of peace.  Peace is there for the having.  Tuck Him into your heart and trust.
I'll be back soon!  (LOVE!)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Home Song

 Well, are YOU puttering around your house now that the festivities have died down a bit?  I am!  Before the big day, I had fun at Kelli's house.  I put a bandana on Millie's head.  Doesn't she look cute?
 Sweet Lizzy received a Jelly Cat duck on Christmas eve.  Her little hat was a gift from her Auntie Kelli.  Is three months old the BEST age, or what?  She's so lovely!
 Something I found in the Barbie piles at Kelli's house, the fairy godmother!  I need one.  I am heading to the Disney Store soon!
 I bought myself a bird poem book before Christmas.  Isn't it pretty?  Poems and birds = great combo!

 Jenny suggested we decorate cookies after Christmas eve supper.  Great idea!  Miss Bug is looking like a Christmas girl, isn't she?

 Ugh.  Limited sugar for this granny from this point on.  Apples, oranges, and grapefruit are just the ticket!
I was waiting for my iPod to charge before getting on the treadmill (SO MUCH WORK, that treadmill!) so I had a small ironing fest!  I pulled out all the "fun to iron" things from my overflowing basket.  Don't you love my peach face?  It was a gift from my amazing friend Jody!  The other linens were embroidered by my grannies.  The crochet came from my mother-in-law's stash years ago.
My mother-in-law also had a lovely collection of hankies!  Isn't this one pretty?  It's big.  Well, anyway . . . now a dent has been made in the ironing and I DID get on the treadmill (thud, thud, thud).  I took a long deep nap and watched a movie.
Oh by the way, the fruit cake was a HUGE flop.  It tasted weird and I remembered that I don't like fruit cake.  Hmmmmm.  I made a chocolate cake that I like a little TOO much and I did not make the pie because the sweets kept piling up and we just can't manage all of it.  We used to be able to, but not any more. We have leftovers galore in the refrigerator.
I wanted to check in and say hello.  I have a lot of photos to take.  My gift books are glorious.  I now have a bread machine! Woo hoo!  I have never had one before, so I have a lot of reading to do (and thinking) before I pull it out of the box.
Did I mention that I LOVE being home?  
Thanks for popping by!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Cheer Pause

 Pause, last pause, in Advent is definitely an opportunity to stop for a minute and become self-aware.  Not in a mean way, but in a realistic way, right?  Do you know that I did not even open the Christmas boxes this year?  I rarely say this but,  the season rushed by because I was at school until Friday, and I didn't have TIME to do all the fussing and fixing that I have done in the past.  So, this morning I shall go to the grocery store like a very EARLY bird and buy a lot of food for the EVE and the DAY.  
 I will continue to ponder my dear Light of the World.

 Bill gave me two Christmas books early.  This is a lovely tale of beautiful coincidence by Patricia Polacco. The pictures have so much bright red.  Bright red brings cheer, doesn't it?

This book contains gorgeous photographs of Nordic scenes.  Aren't the balls cute?

 Even though I haven't sent out holiday cards in years, some nice people still send cards to us.  I love this puppy-Santa.
It's all so close and it will be happy and food-laden.  I like to keep Christmas in my heart every day, so when it's all over I shall surely have that happy "let's get back to normal" feeling.  I'll start thinking about the garden and I might feel like scrubbing and dusting.  There are so many sweet things to do, aren't there?  Knitting.  Ironing.  Reading.  Writing poems.  Writing letters.  Drinking tea.  Napping. 
Yes, I pause to say that I'm okay with simply going slow and feeding my sweet family.  I shall bake a  pie, a fruit cake, and I shall take my spot on the sofa so I can watch the girlies run around and around the main floor. I'm blissfully content. Blissfully thankful.
God be with you, friends.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Waiting for the Blizzard

 It's cold outside but still no snow.  Blizzard warnings are flashing on my phone, but still no snow.  

We have three more days of school and then we'll all be hunkering down.  Sweeping and mopping, dusting and arranging, and making fruit cake.  I found Mrs. Walker's Fruit Cake on  It calls for a lemon cake mix, lemon pudding mix, candied cherries and pineapple, pecans, and dried cranberries.  No weird ingredients.  I usually don't like fruit cake, but I've decided I don't need to LOVE every food that I eat and it's tradition (just as Mr. Banks says in Mary Poppins when he is singing about fox hunting).  Mags and Gretchen Joanna are making mince pies.  Do you have a good mince pie recipe to share with them?  If so, hop over to Mag's blog.

If it DOES indeed snow, Bill can use his birthday snow blower.  I could make a snow woman.  Hot chocolate would taste extra festive.  We might have a fire in the fireplace.  
Are you still feeling the Christmas jazz?  Are you tired?  Do you still have lists that are demanding your check marks?
We've been reading A Christmas Carol in reading class.  It's hard reading for my struggling students, but we take breaks and watch it, too.  We're all pretty interested in Ebenezer Scrooge.  
I hope you have a bright day today.  May your tea taste extra rich and leafy and may a cookie plate be within your reach.
JOY to the world!

Sunday, December 16, 2012


 Hello readers and pausers on this December Sunday!  My days have been very full of people, tasks, outings, and my nights have held good concentrated sleep.  Finally, there are pockets of time for some seasonal decorating.  The tree is fun and very Pom Pom-ish, too!  Yay!
 I happily found inexpensive stacks of tree fairies at the W store!  Mags sent me pom poms, twice!  So with Susan Branch's idea of cut up drinking straws as spacers, I made some funny garland!  Do you like my bunting?  I sewed!
 Here are some fuzzy nutcrackers because Christmas music MUST contain The Nutcracker, right?
 Oh!  Before I forget, the Willows are in New Zealand.  Angel Catherine is entertaining them in her lovely and elegant picnic style!  This is the envelope they left in, all those months ago.  Soon they'll come back to me.  They'll greet Badger and ponder their next adventure.  Speaking of adventure, we saw The Hobbit last night.  I liked it and I'm going to read the book again.
 Not a creature was stirring?  Here's my little mouse.  Have you tried the Alan Dart patterns?  I think I've found my knitting venue!  MICE!
 When we went away last weekend (that's the reason that I'm a bit behind, but in a good way!) we met up with these three beauties and other good souls.  Long ago, Bill and I moved to a little southwestern Washington town for the purpose of reaching young people with Christ's good news.  We were a bit clunky in our ways, but HIS grace abounded.  We met some precious people and walked with them.  All these years later, they are still the most wonderful lovers of people, the kindness and soundest of souls.  We found GREAT encouragement there as they generously shared their memories of us, with us.  I am humbled by it all and inspired by what my KING does in spite of my often silly ways.
 Well, Lizzy would like to say hello to you.  She's a little pink flower and she is now singing little baby songs and giggling.  Thank you, Jesus.  YOU are the great provider, the healer, the GOOD.  
This is OUR baby, having a short little nap on our sofa.  Oh, how I love this face.  
I am enjoying Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.  One of those pretty ladies' above husband told me about this devotional.  I find it true, good, soothing, and real.  
For my pause today, I quote:
"The hope of heaven is meant to strengthen and encourage you, filling you with wondrous JOY."

We are all feeling a great sense of sorrow for the recent tragedy in our land.  Schools, where our young Americans gather, where teachers take their calling seriously, where community is born, please keep praying for schoolhouses in America.  I know you are tenderly praying for the families that are grieving.  

On Friday, I had the students write about their holiday season and what it means to them.  Many shared that it isn't about the presents, it's about Jesus.  They said they love hot chocolate and  family movie nights.  Do you see why I love them so?  They are good souls, real live-ers, soft hearted beings.  Children KNOW things and they will lead us and teach us, won't they?
Oh, how I love the BABY in that manger.  

You'll be blessed if you click over to Floss's spot, where the pausers gather.  Thank you for stopping by to visit me today.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Early Pause

Hello Christmas Carolers!
I'm doing my Pause in Advent early this week.  I'll be back to check with all the other pausers on Sunday.
I want to direct your attention to a sweet Christmas town.  My friend Ann has set up a lovely little place for us to ponder the meaning of Christmas.  Please click on over, won't you?
I am listening to a James Taylor Christmas album just now, this very early morning.  The tree (clad only in lights today) is reflecting in the window.  The weather will turn colder on Sunday.  Oh, I am delighted that I belong to the KING!
Join Floss's troop of Advent thinkers, won't you?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Starting Sunday

 When we were at Brad and April's church Sunday, I admired the decorations.  I bet you feel like I do, you'd like to play with this creche.  Isn't it majestic?
 I love listening to my boy teach and preach.  He's always had a heart for holy truths and he's been a good book worm since he could recognize a bookcase.  
 Of course he got all teary listening to HIS firstborn sing, "This is the Day!"  I added her song at the end of my last post.  
 Millie turned two years old!  This party game is called Ella Fun.  Butterflies shoot out of the elephants trunk and the butterfly nets are handy to catch them.  It was a noisy ruckus.
 We had pizza and cake. 
 This little pinkie loved her crown, her gifts, her cake.
 Cake.  I'm not sure why I think cake is so romantic, so symbolic of good things.  I think we'll have cake instead of pie at Christmas.  I think I'll try my best to make a super duper cake to celebrate Jesus and His birth.  
Meanwhile, I'm still mindful of slowing down.  This has been a rather speedy week, but it's not over yet.  Have you been slowing down at all?  However do you do it?
I hope this day brings you a string of quiet moments, good pilgrim.